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Hello there

Oh dearest blog! I’d forgotten about you! I am ever so sorry. Look a pretty picture to distract you!

Pretty Sunflower

Isn’t that picture pretty? I knew you’d like it. So here’s what’s been going on: I’ve been working! Mostly full time (at least this month). Soon after that last post (April! Again my apologies!) I landed a job working at one of the hospitals here in town as a clerk in the lab. Being a clerk means I get to do all the fun stuff: file, order tests, yell at nurses for being dumb, talk to doctor’s offices to give test results, look at all the cool specimens before histology comes to pick them up – stuff like toes and gallbladders, administer drug screens (not yet but soon), and all kinds of other cool stuff! I don’t have to do stuff like run tests on gross stuff like poop, pee, sputum and pleural fluid. I’m learning a lot, so much that I can yell at medical dramas when they order unnecessary tests for people. Like, do you really need a type and screen for someone who has the flu? I doubt they will be receiving blood products unless they have the Ebola. I am also convinced I’m going to get Swine flu. I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it.

So I’m working about 20 hours a week there. Which is keeping me busy. I was walking Buttons the Dog until the end of July when nice neighbor lady decided she was fully recovered from her hip replacement surgery and could walk him herself. That right there was a source of income that was nothing to sneeze at. But soon after, I got a call from the company I interned for last summer/fall. I’m a contract worker now (I prefer freelancer), taking pictures of products sales and marketing (ha! S&M) wants updated for the 2010 catalogue. I am of course happy to oblige as I loved working there. Maybe because a bunch of dudes are easier to work with then a bunch of moody women. (That’s not to say I don’t love my coworkers at the hospital. I love…most of them.)

So before this blog turns into a blog about the economic downturn and how this has affected me personally, I shall keep the work antedotes to a minimum. See you soon.

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Hey! Most of the letters in the title of this post begin with T. Awesome!

I feel really bad that I left things so long from my last post. It’s like my brain wants to do all sorts of creative things in all freetime but my brain can’t make my body go over to the computer and open up WordPress. I’m really working hard to change that. Really! I went almost a month ago to the sheep farm to see the lambs and take a buncha pictures and I haven’t finished editing them yet. When I graduated last last spring, I’d done nothing but school school school for four years. (Some readers may not know this but I went to RIT which has a reputation for a rigorous academic climate. That doesn’t help things when you also edit a 32 pg magazine among other fun activities.) I was so tired and I was so uninterested in doing anything. I had to detox. I kind of feel like I’m detoxing still or maybe I’ve fallen into a kind of slump since I’ve been laid off. All I seem to have the energy for is to read, voraciously. That’s another post for another day.

To be perfectly honest, the best part of my day is going over to the elementary school to volunteer before I do my recess duty. In other words, all the time I spend at the elementary school is awesome. Since signing on as playground supervisor, I also do some volunteering around the school. (Which I think I failed to explain in post #2) Side note – if you having a shitty time of it, are bored out of your face-hole at work or just need a self esteem boost: volunteer with kids. Seriously. Every morning when I walk into that 2nd grade classroom to run a guided reading group, I’m greeted with choruses of ,”HIIII MARY!!!” It is the best feeling. Kids love when “young people” come in and volunteer. Most of the time its old ladies or stay at home moms. You will be cool. You will be loved. You will get many hugs from adorable kindergartners. So that’s what I do. I work on reading and comprehension with 2nd graders and then I pop down to kindergarten to work with a few kids one on one on reading, recognizing the letters of the alphabet and identifying what sounds they make.

After all that do-gooding, I go outside for the work I get paid for: watching the playground. The other supervisor and myself have a good cop/bad cop dynamic. She doesn’t take any crap. I try to reason with the kids. She will speak very strongly. I squat down so I can look the kids in the eyes and speak sweetly. Since winter has released its icy grip on Wisconsin, things have been pretty stable. I don’t have to monitor behavior so much and there is a decrease in fighting. So that leaves me time to make a giant train of kindergartners or to swing with 1st graders. Kids constantly come up to tell me stuff or yell for me to watch them on the monkey bars. I LOVE ALL OF IT.

Am I rethinking my career path? Maybe a little bit. I wish there was some way I could combine what I got a degree in with working with kids. Hmmmmm. Something to think about.

I have no leads on the job front. Forget the “real” job search. I just need a JOB. I apply everywhere & get rejected all the time. I hypothesize that maybe I’m overqualified or maybe applying to McDonald’s when you have BS is a bad idea. I will be really upset if McDonald’s doesn’t hire me. I just want to write on each application in black Sharpie: I CAN DO THIS JOB. I HAVE COLLEGE DEGREE & MUCH EXPERIENCE. I SPEAK ENGLISH GOOD. YOU DO NOT NEED TO PAY ME ALOT. JUST NEED STEADY PAYCHECK. PLEASE. But alas, there are many other people in my boat as well who want the same job I’m applying for. This topic frustrates me.

I promise to write again really really soon. Pinky swear!

I felt pretty proud of myself when I hit publish on that first blog post that it never occured to me what I would need to do next.

Write another post at some point the near future.

I don’t know if I’ve been very successful in impressing this fact upon you dear read, but I shall state what I am trying to get at bluntly: my life is not very interesting. Inside my head I write compelling blog posts about the politics of noon recess out on the playground and discussing books about blind people with 2nd graders. But those interactions comprise about 2 hours of my day. And then I come home and take a nap. I apologize that I haven’t yet taken the time to show you what I’ve been doing or that I seem to lack the willpower to stay awake through the afternoon. I promise something better. Next week after all, is spring break. I intend on crafting my butt off.

For now I leave you with a conundrum that I have encountered. I purchased a complete set of all 7 seasons of the hit show Buffy the Vampire Slayer in November. I embarked on a mission to watch all 7 seasons, one right after another. I watched the final episode of season 7 last night and now all I want to do is start right back over with season 1, episode 1. The question is: Am I a crazy lady for desire to want to watch all 7 seasons again? I leave that up to your judgment. I certainly hope I am not batshit bananas.

I’ve Done it Again

So I’ve always kept a blog or journal in one form or another. I quite enjoy journaling in all its forms – unless it is done for academic reasons about works of literature. For the longest time (I think since my days in middle school) I kept a blogspot blog. But I have been very bad about blogging regularly over there. I feel bad about it too. I think what I needed to do was to start over to get my blogging mojo back. I never had a lot of followers or commenters or anything like that. Blogging was just something I did for myself and for my friends. Especially when I was far away at school, it was a tidy way to keep in contact (until Facebook came into the picture). Then something broke, where I just got really bored of sharing my wheelings & dealings so to speak. I felt like my life was boring – it was mostly occupied by school – and it wasn’t worth writing about and sharing with whoever took the time to read it. So I took a really really long break. Now I feel like the motivation is there again. Like I might have something to actually share. I’ve ignored my interests for so long in this general malaise I’ve been stuck in since graduating from college. I think what sparked this sudden urge to return to the world was the fact that I played video games today for the first time in a month.

See, I lost my job at the end of January. It wasn’t a particularly wonderful or challenging job. I worked in a call center for a certain retalier of children’s toys (more on why I am not going to say who later). I answered the phone and helped people figure out how to place orders on the website and solve other problems. I worked the graveyard shift – 3:30 – midnight. Towards the later hours, the calls slowed down and I got paid to do crazy things like read or knit. I kinda liked it. But I got laid off. After the rush of the holidays were over, people stopped buying a lot of toys. Because people stopped buying a lot of toys, they stopped calling with problems. Hence the need for a Mary to answer the phone was null. So I lost my job. All that fall I had been working 2 jobs (an internship besides the call center) and been so busy. Too busy to have my own life. I worked seven days a week. My Netflix went unwatched, my knitting was neglected, my sewing machine sad and dusty in the corner. Since I’ve lost my job I have no idea what to do with myself. (Besides look for another job of course.) I’ve torn through my Netflix queue, finished several knitting projects, took up cross-stitch, and entertained thoughts of starting a new quilting project (I set up my sewing machine!). But it all feels meaningless somehow. Cliche, I know. I stopped playing videogames when I lost my job. I got a Wii for Christmas that I’ve hooked up to my computer. I used to play when I finished my shift or on my days off. To blow off steam or somesuch. Today I turned the console back on. That turned everything around.

I’ve moved through the month of Febuary like a zombie lady. Tomorrow I start a new “job.” I put the word in quotation marks because I’ll be working 1 hour a day supervising kids on the playground at a nearby elementary school. I don’t even know how much it pays. What matters is that I’m getting out of the house instead of hiding in the basement. I can feel myself sinking down the familiar rabbit hole of depression and all the goodies that go with it. It’s up to me to pull myself out of it. When I come home from work tomorrow, I’m gonna start that quilt too.

I’ll let you know how it goes.