wingedorange: Mr. Muggles! (Default)

My weekend, in a nutshell:

Good Weekend

Translation: Michael Jackson’s This Is It, two full bobbins of alpaca all spun up and ready to be plied, my stuffed llama buddy, and six pages of notes for the Personal Statement of DOOM.

I spent probably ten hours of my weekend – six yesterday and four today – hard at work on that damn statement. Man, this is hard. The last time I applied to grad school, during my senior year in college, I didn’t find it this difficult to write a statement about myself. I had one basic draft that I futzed with a little, but nothing like this. This go-round, I really struggled. I tried writing a coherent draft from the get-go and that just exploded in my face. I tried bulleting points to get me started, as Jacey suggested, but it wasn’t getting me anywhere. I tried walking away and leaving it alone, like Katie said. I read through Krissy’s personal statement from her applications about a gazillion times. I even looked at the other prompts for my other three schools. I think that was what ended it for me – there WERE no prompts for the other schools! Just “tell us about your professional interests and career goals”. Well, balls. What the hell was I going to do with THAT?

At some point, it dawned on me that I could, with minor adjustments, use the same statement for all four schools, since the other three had no concrete prompt for me to write from. I finally just stared at the prompt I posted the other day and broke it down into what they wanted to know. I made each one a heading in a Word file and wrote something coherent for each category: Personal & Work Experience, Research Experience & Interests, Coursework, and the Damn Diversity Crap (yes, that was my heading. I was a little bitter). I wound up with six pages of reasonably coherent thoughts, in no particular order, and with no transitions or connections to anything else in the statement. But it’s something! The max length for Lehigh (the school with the prompt) is two pages, so there’s a lot of editing that needs to be done. That’s where I stopped, because I couldn’t figure out what to cut and what to leave in. I’m going to let it be for a day or so and then come back to it to see if it makes more sense later.

I still kind of wish I could submit the version I ran past Katie: “I love my students with autism. I want to be a psychologist, so please accept me and give me funding, and I’ll knit you a sweater. I’ll even poop rainbows for you. The end.”

Yeah, that’s the state my brain was in when I was finished. So rather than do anything that required any of my neurons to actually fire, I pulled out my spinning so I could finally finish the alpaca for the Rhinebeck One-Row scarf. Halloween cake challenges on Food Network plus nice, mindless spinning helped my brain re-solidify a little. So in that picture, there’s eight ounces of alpaca – four of the brown and four of the gray – that will get plied together tomorrow after the singles have rested a bit. I’m hoping I’ll be able to start knitting by Thursday, because I have two days off work this week for NJ Teacher’s Convention. Hello, four day weekend. I’ve missed you.

Despite this year being the lamest Halloween ever, what with five trick-or-treaters, the rain, and absolutely no good movies on TV, this was still a decent weekend. I was very productive; besides the spinning and the statement-ing, I also made sugar skull dough for my Spanish lesson tomorrow on Dia de los Muertos. I went Friday and saw This Is It, which was as awesome as it could possibly have been, given the circumstances. I don’t think it’s possible for me to have any MORE love for “Smooth Criminal,” and I will probably giggle each and every time I see a cherry picker for the rest of my life. I’m going again on Thursday night with a friend, which makes me happy. Scott went to New York today and bought me a present, and that makes me happy.

It was a good weekend. :)

Mirrored from winged orange.

wingedorange: Mr. Muggles! (Default)

Or, alternately: “Lloyd Says, ‘Don’t Trust a Ho’.”

It’s Monday and I miss Rhinebeck already. I was missing Rhinebeck once I got back to the Garden State Parkway yesterday, because people don’t drive like jackasses in upstate New York. Honestly, I was on the Parkway about thirty seconds before I was honked at twice, passed, and cut off on a lane switch. Sometimes I am so not proud to be from New Jersey.

Anyway. Rhinebeck was, as usual, awesome. Amanda and I had a really good time, even though it was gray and cold and kind of rainy. We knew we had to get a bad year weather-wise eventually, but I was kind of hoping it would be some other year far in the future at a time when I maybe couldn’t go to Rhinebeck (i.e. a time that does not exist). The drive was really pleasant, and fast this year! We also tried an alternate way of getting into the fairgrounds, which was amazing, because we waited maybe two minutes to park instead of the 45 minutes we waited last year. I was better prepared for the cold this year, and did not freeze. And on the way up, Amanda played me a song called “Don’t Trust a Ho”. I died when I heard the lyrics. “Did they just say, ‘Don’t trust a ho’?!” “Yep.” “*cracks up* That is sound advice!”

(Also good advice? Following the cut so your blog reader doesn’t die when the pictures load.)

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from winged orange.

wingedorange: Mr. Muggles! (Default)

So after I spent all that time spinning, beading, and crying about my Aeolian yarn…I think it’s going to be okay.

I sat down yesterday to unply the beaded thread from the rest of the singles, and it was apparent in the first thirty seconds that if I kept it up, I was going to have a hell of a mess. Fortunately, yesterday was a rational day for me, so I stopped trying to unply and decided just to wind the hank into a ball. As I was winding (by hand, because my ballwinder kept trying to eat the beads), it became apparent that when under a little tension, the goofy plying issue with the thread evened out. It still looks pretty nutty in the ball, but I have faith that if I choose to knit with it, it’ll be more or less okay.

I’m spinning up the other half of the singles now, and once I see what kind of yardage I get, I can see how to proceed. I know that I will not be beading the second half of the yarn, just doing a standard two-ply. My thought so far is to use the non-beaded yarn to knit the main body of the shawl and then use the beaded part for the border. However, since the border takes 45% of the yarn, it’s really going to depend on what the yardage is on the second half of the spinning. If I’m short, I can always substitute a commercial yarn or spin something else.

It’s to the point where I don’t even know where I could possibly wear this shawl, but I’m so far invested in it that I. Will. Have. A. Handspun. Aeolian.

In other news – no, I still haven’t heard about my job. I’m hoping tomorrow will be the day, because I’m tired of literally ducking my principal to avoid being asked about my contract. Seriously, on Friday, I saw him coming down the hall and I dashed into the ladies’ room and stayed there until the hallway was quiet.  Scott’s making out a little better; he has a second interview for his job prospect on Wednesday, which is encouraging.

Let’s see. For those who care (i.e., Katie), I’m still going to the gym. I went Wednesday/Thursday/Friday last week, which may have been a mistake, because I am so sore. I’m used to doing every other day, but things came up last Monday & Tuesday, so I rearranged. Also, I completely stand by the claim I made on Plurk that Michael Jackson’s “Morphine” is the shit for workouts – I ran 8.5 mph on Friday while listening to it, which honestly is crazy, considering that when I started going to the gym (sans-”Morphine,” mind you) I could only do about 3 mph. It’s at the top of my workout playlist now, so we’ll see if it continues to motivate. :)

Mirrored from winged orange.

January 2010

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