Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Mission: Break All Comfortable Boundaries

In a month, I'll be heading out to Pisgah National Forest for a hiking trip that promises to obliterate all of my senses in a barrage of arboreal splendor. And don't forget knocking me out of my comfort zone!

The hike is 31 miles, mostly very steep, primitive, and I'll be packing everything in and out. To complete the hike, I have to make 10 miles per day, which would be no great concern if it wasn't for the altitude and terrain.

Thankfully, I've been getting in a lot of strength training so I feel better than I have all year.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Hellooo there. Remember me?

This past week was really great and challenging...

- At the last minute before school started back up, I rearranged my bedroom, hung a white paper globe lantern, put together a bookshelf from Ikea (Yep, Justin, I ended up getting something particle board after all. Sheesh). Carried a sofa downstairs BY MYSELF and got everything 100% nice and tidy up there. If you know me, you know what a feat of heroic proportions this must have been.

- I prepared lots of Clean food, packed them in little containers (some frozen, some just refrigerated) before the week started so I could go back to school with a fully automated morning routine. Grab and go. Delicious.

- Monday morning Archaeology class was cool, and my prof looks JUST LIKE JOHNNY DEPP. It's a full class (50 students?), and lots of anthro majors in there. Many of them seem to be getting into archaeology too. Awesome to have the chance to spend time with people who share my passions.

- Parking at USF is an all out nightmare, even though I paid nearly $200 for the privilege.

- The drive there from here seems to take about an hour or so in the mornings. Parking there takes about 40 minutes. Coming home takes 40-45 minutes.

- Tuesday I had tea with B.W. in Tampa. We're going to meet up for Scrabble sometime in the next couple of weeks. He's studying for the GRE and promised to give me a run for my money.

- After that, was Methods in Cultural Research, BioAnt, and Anthro Linguistics (all Tues/Thurs classes). All of them completely magical in their own ways. Going to be a lot of reading though, upwards of 12 hours per week outside of class.

- Wednesday: Archaeology, then BioAnt Lab

- I hit up the yoga class on campus after Linguistics yesterday (Thurs) and it was awesome. Very challenging and just what I needed after being cooped up in the driver's seat all week. Then Charles, Amy, and Aves came over to my house and we drank wine, celebrated Charles' new United Nations job, and just enjoyed being together!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

that sheepish feeling

Whatever I denote as a problem always has a way of seeming really minor and unimportant after a few days.

I do feel lucky that I have the wellbeing to cook and clean. I am thankful for the chores.

See my muscles popping as I'm turning over this leaf? Gratitude, folks.

Friday, August 21, 2009

a few days away from all out insanity? nahhhh

"Everything will be ok, everything will be fine..." I chanted to myself as I lay huddled on the floor between the kitchen and living room.

My kids were playing upstairs, I could hear them, so I let myself just wallow for a bit, not wanting them to see me upset and knowing they would make plenty of noise coming down the stairs. At least the "everything will be ok" motivational speech was an improvement. Minutes before I was crying out that I just couldn't take it anymore.

"It" being the constant cooking and cleaning (and scrubbing, on hands and knees), over and over, with no appreciation.

First, I was making lunch. Fresh fish. My mom's recipe for red snapper; a tomato, onion, and garlic sauce. The kids had just informed me that they weren't going to eat fish (even though at the grocery store, 24 hours earlier, I asked them if they wanted some fish this week and they said YES) and then they ran upstairs to play, when I splattered red sauce all over my brand new white wrap style blouse. And then, I took to the floor, fetal-style.

Once I got up there was a blur of activity. Helen and I nearly ripped the shirt off of me as I poured ginger ale on it, and then I got out some of the spray-on stuff she has around that is miraculously formulated.

White blouse was saved.

But what about my mental health? Seriously. I'm in a bind here.

This is the situation- I have been eating mostly clean un-processed foods with the exception of some beer and a tortilla at Brian's house a few weeks ago, and a little Greek dressing on a salad I had at Ikea yesterday (origin of the dressing unknown). And this kind of eating takes more work than eating just whatever. And I honestly need to eat every 3 hours.

Planning, shopping, washing prep stuff, etc. Now, with school starting again, I have to really be on the ball, but time will be a big factor.

Now, I love my roommate, you know that. She is as important to me as my own family. And I want what's best for her, and I'd love it if she cut out fast and highly processed foods... but she's not capable of doing it for herself and I just can't do it all! I can't do all the shopping and cooking and cleaning for both of us to eat clean, and I feel terribly guilty to do it just for myself... that seems so selfish.

So I don't know what to do. Can I just lay on the floor and moan a bit more? Can I have a snack? I'm starving already.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Layin' Low

I've been getting things in order here, waiting for the (inevitable?) maelstrom that comes with a full time and then some course load.

Did I tell you that GPAs start anew when you transfer in to USF? I know!!!

I can have a 4.0 :D

I applied for a pretty decent sounding job today, but if I get it, I'll have to drop down to full time status, instead of full time plus. Which is fine. Whatever. If I get it, cool. If not, hopefully the person who does needs it more than I do.

But I'm just at home alone today, listening to music, cleaning, menu planning (healthy eating doesn't just HAPPEN. you have to make it work), and still more cleaning. No gym today. Bike ride, instead...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

making it work :)

So, my school schedule has morphed! Remember how I said I had a decent enough thing worked out, but that I had barely any of the courses I actually need?

I've been patrolling the OASIS site for registration non stop, and I mean constantly. All hours of the day and it's paid off.

New Class Schedule!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Did I mention that I'm teaching a historical fiber arts course? to kids?

I'm going to have to make a dozen lap looms, drag my my spinning wheel out of Harry's attic, and give it a tune up. Also need to purchase some rovings, some yarn, tapestry needles, and needle threaders. If I'm really adventurous I'll make an extra drop spindle or buy some. Oh, and I need to put together an expense list for my employer.

Then I have to make my power point presentations (one on the history of fiber usage, one that is a pictorial dictionary of technical terms, and one on modern fiber arts), quizzes, and take home handouts.

I keep wanting to get in the zone for this work, but when I start to get going it's unfailingly when I'm obligated/expected to be doing something else. And when I have plenty of unstructured time, there's not too much drive on my part to work on THIS.

OK, later, tonight. It's going to happen. Unless I get side tracked or sleepy or something.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

38 minutes

Not too bad of an evening drive, from north Tampa to my neighborhood.

Anyways, I got there bright and early (8 am). The campus is huge (I'm used to little SPC campuses), and signs for the orientation were, at best, sporadically existent.

The tone for the day was set by sorority hopefuls armed with high end accessories. I had a tall black coffee with me. We walked and walked (a mile??) to the Marshall Student Center where in a packed theater, seating several hundred, awkward presenters told us about this great new "transition" we were about to experience.

At this point, I still thought this was all kind of lame and unnecessary. Some people had brought their moms with them.

The presenters had us all stand and they sang the alma mater, which honestly gave me goosebumps. Maybe that's because the speaker told us he didn't want the first time we heard it to be at our commencement ceremony, and that just got me. I started to feel really excited.

Anyways, there were several mandatory seminars, several optional a-la-carte type presentations (I heard one all about parking info, one about the business end of school, and one about study abroad programs), then back to the big theater.

Eventually we were sorted, little by little, by college and major so that advisors could speak to us.

I was sent to see Dr. Edgar Amador, my advisor, in the anthro dept (funny how anthro depts SMELL the same all over the place), and hello! He is about 30, with wavy dark hair and eyes, and a pleasant smile. There's a road bike propped behind his desk, too.

Anyways, I was then sent across campus to the library to use a computer and pick classes. Ran into Matt Vassallo on the way, haha. Had a pain in the ass of a time picking classes because EVERYTHING IS ALREADY TAKEN. Argh! So I now have a weird patchy schedule. It's pretty much equivalent to a psoriatic dog, which is a slap in the face as far as schedules go, since I'm practically a senior.

After the first day of classes, if some kids drop, I can try to squeeze into the classes I originally wanted. "Want" is sort of the wrong word though. I only need certain classes to graduate (essentially just the upper level ANT classes), and I can't just waste time left and right with nonsense classes.

So, until further notice, I've got:

-Biological Anthropology

-Bio ANT Lab

-Spanish IV

-Geology- "From the Big Bang to the Ice Age"

-Ancient History I

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

what does one read after Infinite Jest???

Anne of the Island, of course. It's like comfort food for when life and literature has given you the howling fantods.

That's what I took with me to Pensacola and I was happy that I did.

I also started reading a Chris Moore novel, Fluke and it's really funny.

Anyways, things are chill here. I'm still eating super healthy (if you don't count the half dozen peach margaritas w/ whipped cream and maraschino cherry toppings I had in P'cola) and feeling really really good about everything; school, family stuff, and my personal life.

Monday, August 3, 2009

getting ready for 'back to school's

The kids got some shots today, in preparation for the coming school year, and I got my paperwork saying I have, indeed, once-upon-a-time been immunized too.

I've got an full day at USF planned for Thursday- mandatory orientation, advising, etc, but I already figured out my schedule myself.

And now, I'm sitting here listening to a painful reading about frogs and tadpoles. EXCRUCIATING. I should probably go and deal with this.