One Down – One To Go

Just finished my last science test, I’m done with one class.  Next I need to finish my paper – have all the data; now I just need to write.  I can take my school books back to the book rental.  I am half done and will work on the other one tomorrow night.
The end of this semester hasn’t been as bad as last semester when I was laid up.  It has in many ways been stressful and variable.  I sure didn’t expect to have to move Vicki just before the end of the semester.  I also didn’t expect to have to prep for the department to move either. 
Next I just have to write – this is never a hardship.  I already know at least two to four differences I want to talk about for my final project.  It is just a matter of sitting down and writing.  This will happen tomorrow night when Ken has gone to bed.  I can spend time writing about the sliding scale and so on.  I have a good section of it in my head – it is just a matter of getting it on paper.
Funny how it is a ten page paper that is due Thursday and I’ve not written a word about it.  I have it all in my head and I think once I start writing it will go quickly.  I’d love more time to develop more of my comparison, include more examples, research different genres, and so on but that isn’t going to happen.  I’m just going to have to be happy with what I have and get it done. 

Then I can take a week off and just do fun stuff like reading and crocheting.  After that a brief slacking period, I have to start my to-do list.  Although I will try to keep my to-do list in a more manageable size, unlike I’ve done in the past


One of the things I struggle with most is finding a balance in my life.  I’m either too focused on work, school, or whatever and forget to take time for me. 
This week I had a long to-do list for homework I wanted to get through.  It involved three chapters, videos, and labs for science, three books, excerpts and comments, paper, and final project for Prose Stylistics.  In addition to that I had a long list of crocheting I wanted to get done including three graduation gifts which are time consuming. 
For a change, I think I’ve found a balance (temporarily I’m sure).  Yesterday is a perfect example.  I spent four hours working on homework.  I finished (well all except a final read through) of my paper, read the last nine excerpts and wrote comments, and I worked on some comments for science.  This four-hour session was spent at my computer and by the time I was done my legs were bothering me. 
After I was done at the computer I took my science book with the intention of sitting in the recliner and reading.  Instead I watched some TV with Vicki and then took a nap.  After the nap I worked on crocheting a grad gift.  The rest of my day was spent either crocheting or enjoying my down time. 
This morning I am working on homework until Vicki comes back with our friend.  Then I will work on crocheting because they will be playing on the Wii and it is too distracting for me to do homework.  However, I can enjoy their company while I work on grad gifts.  I won’t have to feel guilty for the down time because I will be putting in some study time before they get here.  I may finish another chapter of science or just make progress on it.  I don’t know how far I’ll get but I know I will feel like I balanced out my day by working this way. 
Without a doubt, I will struggle with having balance, but for this past week, I can at least feel like I found some semblance of it during my vacation time.  My to-do list didn’t get done – either one of them – but I did make progress on both.  Maybe that is the point, especially for someone like me who always has too long of a to-do list, I got something done on both lists and made progress.

Not Quite Done

Today is going to be a busy day.  I have homework to finish and need to help Vicki prep for Super Bowl food as we have Kelly and Dominic coming over to watch.  I also want to finish off my grant, work on crocheting, and a few other things. 

Yesterday was a bust.  I was in the middle of working on my grant when Ken said the tv channel he was watching went out.  This led to an all day affair with the cable / internet provider.  It eventually got fixed but it literally took until about 8:00 pm last night before we have tv services back.  I get glitches but I don’t get when they totally screw up.  I got the run around to begin with but had all the information and finally got someone who was willing to listen and work with me.  Now the service is correct – next I’ll just have to watch the billing to make sure they get that straight.  I’m sure my frustration and annoyance level will go through the roof as I try to get that fixed.

I did get some of the editing done on the grant but now I’m second guessing myself on what writing sample I should send in.  This is what my grant will be judged on for the most part so it is extremely important.  I want them to see my writing style and understand the story I’m trying to tell.  I also want it to be a well edited piece of writing.  Here is where the dilemma comes in – I have 25 pages which are well edited and start the story but aren’t the meat of the story (prologue and back story).  I have the beginning of the story which hasn’t been edited at all.  The prologue and back story has been edited by several people and I’ve had input from a variety of sources.  This means my edits have been thoughtful and constructive.  I’m not sure if I jump ahead if I have as good a quality of writing as the other part.  However, the beginning of the story is more action filled and jumps right in to the main characters and their quest but it isn’t edited.  I’ve had little feedback on it at all.  I’ve done little work on it myself as I’ve been working on editing the first part and writing at the tail end of the story.  I need to make the choice today especially if I’m going to start with the beginning because I will have to get the 25 pages I’m going to submit edited. 

This morning I was going to get up and work on my homework.  I’ve not touched it yet.  I’ve spent the last hour working on editing other people’s stuff and sorting through emails.  My last lab for this section is the next thing I’m going to work on and then I want to go back and review the ones where I got answers wrong.  The material is definitely getting more difficult and I need to have as many points as possible as I move forward.  Yes, I know two of my labs I only missed one and that is acceptable but I still am going to need the points.  Also, I have no idea at this point if I have homework for the other class as the professor has not posted anything and I wasn’t in class on Thursday.  This is particularly frustrating to me because I could have spent yesterday working on it but she hadn’t posted anything yet or answered my email.  I know my faculty told me to give her 48 hours (business hours) but at the same time it causes me stress because I can’t just stay home from work because she hands out a ton of homework.  Here is where I have to do what I can and let the rest go – obviously I’m working on that. 

I’m going to try to spend the next two hours very productively and then this afternoon I’ll be assistant chef to Vicki and have fun during the Super Bowl (who ever thought those words would come out of my mouth?)

My to-do lists got some attention but not enough…

Sunday Morning

My morning actually started last night but after a few hours of sleep I’m back at my desk.  I can hear the crackling of the fire Ken has going.  He brought me breakfast this morning which was wonderfully sweet of him.  I’m looking out my window and loving the colors.  Yes we have a gray sky but the trees are just popping out against the gray.  On the tree outside my window there are a few gold leaves hanging on to the branches.  On one branch there is a smattering of them but in another section there is a lone leaf dancing in the wind.  It stubbornly clings to the branch like it is on a mission.  It is that happy gold / yellow color which always puts a smile on my face. 

If I lean over a bit towards the center of my desk, I can see the other tree in our front yard.  It is still plastered with leaves.  I also see the brown leaves on the ground contrasting in color with the still green lawns.  Through the empty branches of the neighbors’ trees I can see the orange and red of the other trees on the street.  There is just something about the colors of this season that gives me such pleasure.  It is a sense of peace. 
The weather has definitely turned colder.  We are in the 30s and 40s at night and aren’t getting much higher than 60 during the day.  It is a relief for me because I’ve never liked the heat of summer and we are now in that wonderful phase of cooler and pleasant before we go to the harsh cold of winter.
Yesterday I got a LOT of stuff done.  I got about a dozen things crossed off my lists.  I worked on stuff from all of my lists from crocheting to the business, to writing, to the longest list of schoolwork.  I spent the afternoon having a wonderful discussion with a friend.  I’ve not had a chance to visit with her in a long time.  It was fabulous to see her and have the time to just gab.  We caught up and talked politics and a variety of other topics.  It was the perfect relaxation I needed in the middle of my very busy day.
Today I’m going to tackle more on my lists.  At this point I sort of know what isn’t going to get done but I’m not quite ready to give up on it.  Maybe if I work really hard and fast I will get to it all.  (Stop laughing it could happen!)  It is time to put my hair up and get busy with all my tasks for the day.   

Step Away from the Post-its

I should have my privileges for lined post-its taken away.  I have five lists of things to work on this weekend.  I spent twenty minutes with my lined post-it pad and came up with this multi-level to do list. 

On one hand it helps me prioritize and organize.  The lists allow me to see what needs to get done and figure out what needs to be done first.  It is great for keeping me on track.  I feel so accomplished when I cross off things.

On the other hand it stresses me out because I know that I will not get through the lists.  If I stayed up all weekend and worked constantly, I would still have things to do on my to-do list. 

Why do I do this to myself?  I have no idea.  Hopefully I can get a majority of the things crossed off my lists.  I may be exhausted and cranky by Sunday night but at least I’ll have accomplished things right? 

I have a midterm this next week.  I’m freaking out a bit about it.  Some of the material I know.  I understand it and have no problem bringing it to mind.  The rest of it though I don’t know.  I think we will be able to have our notes and books for the midterm which is a great bonus.  Still I’m worried. 

I think if I weren’t stressing about this midterm (and all the other homework on the list) I’d be doing better and the post-it pad might not have taken such a beating. 


Work, school, writing, family, and the beginning of a new semester means I’ve been feeling just a touch overwhelmed. Okay maybe more than a touch.  Today I was able to tackle some of the tasks that have been giggling on the corner of my desk because I just haven’t had time to get to them.  Now a number of them are done. 
My to-do list was over a page on a standard pad of paper.  I had notes in the margins and scribbled every which way.  Today I rewrote my to-do list and discovered all the things I’d crossed off meant that I was down to about 2/3 of the page.  This is a giant leap forward. 
I’m exhausted.  Partly because I’ve not gone to bed before midnight all week with all my homework and other things I need to take care of and partly because I got a lot done today.  It feels good. 
I’m trying to savor this good feeling.  I am going to breathe and enjoy it for at least thirty seconds.  Tonight I have to page through my homework to-do list and hope it isn’t too extensive.
Good news is I discovered on my Kindle that I have the Oxford Dictionary of English.  It is an amazing dictionary and quite extensive.  I am using it regularly.  I also purchased a calendar program which allows me to put in appointments and a to-do list.  This has become my closest friend right now.  I look at it multiple times a day.  It helps keep me on track which is something I definitely need right now.