Saturday, May 30, 2009

Time for a diet...

I decided to start the South Beach Diet again starting today. It is the only diet that has ever worked for me. It starts out with no carbs allowed for the first 2 weeks, which I actually think is beneficial to me for digestive reasons. This may sound weird, but the only time of my life that I have had a regular digestive system was when I was eating zero carbs. I suspect that I have a gluten sensitivity. It is hard to avoid my favorite things like potatoes and bread, but it is worth it. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Wish List

Ok, so it's not Christmas time or even really near my Birthday, but since I've been a student, there are things that I dream about being able to afford one day when we are both working.

1. A House (with an Art room)- of course this is the biggest one. We renewed our apartment lease for 6 months (from July) so we are hoping to save a bit of $$$ for a down payment on a house in that time. Unfortunately I won't start getting a paycheck until August, so it may not be possible to save enough money as soon as we would like. We would like to capitalize on the $8,000 tax rebate! My Artwork and supplies are eating our apartment, so I can't wait til I have my own room/studio!

2. A new Mac Laptop- I am using the same laptop that I've had since my freshman year of college. Yes, the laptop that stopped working about a month after my college classes started that year. It has had so many problems and had to be reformatted more times than I can remember. I really would like a Mac.

3. A New Digital Camera- I really like my mom's new Canon digital camera. It takes really good pictures and sells for a very reasonable price. Lately I've been using the camera on my phone or the still shots on my video camera (that aren't as high quality as a regular camera).

3. A Kitchen Table- We don't have room in our apt for a kitchen table, so we eat at our coffee table on the sofa. I can't wait til we have a real place to eat!

Job Offer!

I got a verbal job offer from the principal of an elementary school in Cy-Fair ISD to be their Art teacher! HR is slow, so they still need to call me to set up a time to sign the actual written offer, but that should happen soon.

I am soo relieved to know where I'm going to be early. This way I can plan and see what supplies are in my room before the school year starts.


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Pet Peeve

Today, Glenn and I were supposed to go up to Austin to visit his Grandpa in the hospital. We had just been on the road for about 20 minutes when Glenn got a call saying not to come. Apparently Grandpa didn't want any visitors. So Glenn went back to work, and I went to the grocery store since I wasn't subbing today.

I had just parked at Wal-Mart and was walking toward the entrance when a car with two men in it stopped and yelled, "MA'AM!!!" to get my attention. They then proceeded to ask "In God's glory, can you please spare some money for us?"

This really made me angry for several reasons.

1. They were two able-bodied men who could be working. If they spent the energy that they were using scouting out people in the parking lot and asking for money, they could be inquiring about employment!

2. They were driving a fairly nice looking pick-up truck, not brand-new, but not beat-up either.

3. They were using gas to circle around the Wal-Mart parking lot asking for money. If they REALLY needed money that bad, they would park the car and save gas by traveling on foot!

4. Anybody at Wal-Mart ( a discount retailer) on Tuesday in the middle of the day is either unemployed, a part-time worker, elderly or retired, disabled, or a stay at home parent, all of which probably don't have too much extra money to donate to you!

5. If you want to beg people for their hard-earned money, please don't bring God into it!

I told them, "I'm sorry I'm unemployed right now," which is true. I do work for $90/day as a substitute, but I don't get work every day. I'm also a student, so I'm paying much more money to tuition, books, my certification class, and art supplies than I am bringing in. It is a sacrifice for a goal that will pay off very soon. Yes, Glenn has a good engineering job, but we need every penny. If we do have extra money ever, we will start saving for a down-payment on a house, or pay off student loans! We have to be really careful with our money, and he has worked too hard to be throwing it away to some loser who could be working themselves! I just think that they have a lot of nerve!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The semester comes to an end and other stories

My last 2 papers for this semester are due tomorrow night. I had every intention of finishing them today, and could have except that I learned that I have to come back to campus tomorrow anyway to drop off something to another teacher for my summer class. When I found that out, I just decided to take a break and finish up tomorrow. I needed a break anyway. But I'm sooo close to being done!

My critique went well despite the fact that my teacher doesn't like the frames that 3 of my works are in. Oh well... I like them so that's what matters to me.

I've been thinking about my options for what level to teach. I always thought I would go straight into teaching high school. The students are more advanced, know how to use scissors and walk to the restroom by themselves, etc. I am starting to wonder if there will be any high school openings for me to fill though!

I have recently gotten used to the idea of teaching Middle School. Sure they all hit growth spurts at different times which leads to a comical looking group of kids, (looking at a middle school class reminds me of hobbits vs Gandalf in Lord of the rings, or the star wars bar- a tiny kid sitting next to a giant haha) and they seem to be the age group that nobody wants to teach because they have the sass of the high schoolers with the immaturity of the elementary kids, but I think they are pretty amusing.

I never thought I would teach elementary, but I am warming up to the idea. My mom started out teaching elementary and loved it. In fact the only reason she started teaching high school was because BISD doesn't have elementary art. The kids get really excited about art and suck up anything you teach them like sponges. On the down side, I've heard they stick over 50 kids in a classroom at a time- which sounds a little bit overwhelming. Surely there would be aides in a class of that size to help though. I wouldn't have as much extra after hours work like matting for contests, etc. like for high school though which leaves more time to do my own artwork and grad school. I think it could be kind of fun. I'm truly a kid at heart anyway.

I've had to remind myself to keep an open mind and that it will all work out in the end. It could be a blessing in disguise if I end up teaching a level that I hadn't anticipated. The only reason I've been set on high school is that it is familiar to me, but I know that I can do a great job on any level.

Hopefully I will find out soon though :-P

Monday, May 4, 2009

In- Between

One of the feelings that I dislike most in life is the feeling of being in-between. What I mean by this is that I don't feel like any of my work has paid off at this point. I have been working hard toward my immediate goal of being an art teacher and my long-term goal of being a professional artist, yet I still have no idea where I will be working next year.

Sometimes I feel like I've been pedaling 100 miles per hour with no destination in sight. Right now, I am at the point where I have applied to all of the school districts in feasible driving distance from where I live (some being as much as 45 minutes away), but most high schools have not started interviewing outside candidates yet, so I am waiting...

I can only take one grad school class this summer because it is the only one offered that I need, so I feel like it is time wasted that I could be working toward my degree. I should be able to take a full load while I'm not working, but no. There are 3 classes that I want/need to take for the fall, but there is no way I can take that big of a load while (hopefully) working full time and living more than an hour from my college. grrrrrr

I have done all I can do when it comes to trying to get hired! I've applied to schools, met and stayed in close contact with the arts coordinator at the district where I would prefer to work, subbed at this district, volunteered for VASE, and even presented a workshop at State VASE where all of the coordinators and art teachers from all over the state of Texas were together in one place.

I interviewed at a middle school more than a month ago and they are "still in the interview process" and was told that a decision would be made soon. Now, it is the end of the year and I understand how busy they are. I would never fault any principal for taking their time to make the right decision for their school. In fact that may be a good sign about the school that they take their art program seriously. However, I'm not sure my stomach can't take this suspense for too much longer!

I unofficially visited a high school that was supposed to have an opening with the understanding that I would be called in for an official interview once the internal hiring period ended. Come to find out the teacher who was supposed to be leaving is not leaving anymore. Great...

I have an upcoming interview for an elementary position, which is awesome, but when are the high schools going to start calling me!?! I hate that it is all totally out of my control at this point. Then- I wonder if I do get an offer from the middle or elementary school, what will I do? I really like the middle school a lot, and am open to the elementary school, but I haven't even had the opportunity to interview at a high school yet. I would have a really hard time turning down a job at that middle school, but it makes me wonder if I should be more patient and wait to see if a high school job opens up or if I should block it out of my mind and just be grateful if I get an offer from a great school like the middle school!

I will be SO HAPPY when I have been hired and will know where I am going to be next year!I really hope it happens sooner rather than later so I can actually enjoy my summer somewhat instead of "having no plans and too much time and "feeling too restless to unwind"- (Bright Eyes)