Monday, November 30, 2009

Hansel and Gretel

As my first semester in Graduate School winds down I find myself eagerly awaiting the end. Sure, I've always looked forward to vacations and such, but somehow I feel like I've been in the wringer more than usual--and I've actually had a pretty light course load.

I suspect my anxiety and anticipation for the end of the semester is closely linked to the two English 101 class I teach ending as well. I figure I've ready around 10 papers from each of my 52 students (5 rough drafts and 5 final drafts), at roughly 4 pages each paper. That comes out to over 2,000 pages of student work graded, edited, feedback given, complimented, etc. Sheesh! No wonder I don't seem to have time for my own school work. Needless to say my anticipation is building--only 3 more class periods and counting.

Although I moan and complain, I actually do enjoy my students--for the most part. I get exasperated and frustrated when I see a paper that has weaknesses, faults, etc., that I know I talked to the student about and suggested they correct/revise, but they didn't. Lazy! I have to constantly remind myself that they're only freshman, away from home for the first time (for the most part), and they're just beginning their college careers. But seriously, can't they take a little time for accountability. I can't count the number of times I've had excuse after excuse for why a paper wasn't turned in on time or why the student didn't come to class. Do they seriously think I'm that gullible? Enough with the rant.

On to the reason for the picture. As I walked to my first class this morning (one that I teach) I was enjoying the crisp fall weather and blue sky above. I'll admit I'm a morning person and I don't mind waking up early for class. So on this first day back from Thanksgiving Break I noticed there was a trail of green beads underfoot on the walkway. They weren't blazing emerald in color or subtle jade, they were glistening green synthetic beads. But only the best plastic! As I followed this adorned path I felt a bit like Gretel, of Hansel and Gretel fame, as it seemed to lead me directly to the door of the building I begin my day in. Maybe it's a sign that teaching, and school in general, is an adventure and I should enjoy the journey. Then again, maybe it's not, but that's how I'm going to take it!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star...

As I've embarked on my "teaching career" I've found that you have to take the good with the bad. Play good cop one day and bad cop the next. Encourage a student while ripping them a new one. And hold yourself to the same standards as you do your students. That being said, some of my students took great delight in catching me and "punishing" me with my own rules.

Just like every first day of class, I went over my expectations, the class syllabus, how to access Blackboard, yada, yada, yada. One thing I mentioned was that they weren't to text or have their cell phone ringers turned on or else I would make them get up in front of the class and sing. What's a little public humiliation between friends? To prove how serious I was about the rule, within the first week of school my phone "rang" in each of my classes (I set an alarm, but they don't know that) and the students took glee in making me sing. I was forced to sing "I'm a Little Teapot," with the motions, in both classes. Throughout this whole semester only one student has been forced to sing...and that was the last problem I had from him in this regard.

Don't worry, I'm getting to the point of my story. Unfortunately, just this morning my cell phone went off again. The ONE day I forget to put my ringtone on silence and I happen to get a call during my 8:30 AM class. Whod've guessed? Oh the squeals of glee from my students (hey, this is my posting, so if I said they squealed, they squealed). I tried to nonchalantly pass it off, but they called me out. What was their punishment this time? They told me to sing "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" while standing on a chair and patting my head while I rubbed my stomach. (What evil students!) Of course I have my pride so I said the chair part.

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Wanna go Half-sies on a Baby?

Did the blog title hook your attention? I hope so because today, in class, I talked about opening and closing paragraphs of a paper and I hit the intro aspect pretty hard. The main thing I talked about was getting the reader's attention. For my example I used personal ads from a newspaper. I put two side-by-side and had the students pick which one got their interest the most. Was it the one whose first line was "SWM, 56, 6'9", 159lbs, w/mustache..." or was it the one that said "IF SHALLOW LUST IS WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING FOR ANSWER THE AD ABOVE,..." They, of course, picked the "lust" one and then I had them pretend everyone in the world is single so they could write the ad for anyone. Obama got an ad written about him, as did Will Smith, some cougar-ish 68 year old woman looking for an 18-35  year old to help her spend her money, and some guy who's "hook" is the title of this blog. I can honestly say when the student shared his hook I gaffawed a huge laugh.

It was a good day in class. 

Friday, November 6, 2009

New outlook, New purpose

So I've decided I've kind of been missing the point of this blogging thing. Sure I use it as a tool to let my family and friends know what's going on with me, but what about what's making my laugh, roll my eyes, cringe, gnash my teeth, and generally pique my interest? So instead of seeing my blog as a "chore" I'm trying to view it as an opportunity. I'm an english major, so why does the idea of writing make me sigh? Hmmmm....

In that light, I've been constantly reaffirmed this week. I've gotten positive feedback both from my advisor and students I teach that I'm not completely sucking at this "teaching" thing. This week I've had students asking me what time I'm teaching next semester and what class I'm teaching because they want to, if possible, take another class from me. Yeah! I'm not horrible! Unfortunately for them (insert cackle here) I'm actually teaching the exact same class next semester as I am now--so if I get repeat, can I trade them with another teacher for a different one (kinda fantasy football league-ish)? Because obviously they/I didn't do something right the first time.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

It's Autumn and my Housemate is Driving me Crazy!!!

It's officially fall. The leaves have turned colors and committed suicide on sidewalks, roadways, and yards. I can see my breath puff out in front of me when I walk around campus (which always makes me think I should be in better shape), and I can pull on my favorite hoodie or warm clothing and not worry about sweating up a storm in class.

I love sweater weather!

With that being said, my housemate, a guy by the name of Chris, is driving me crazy!!! "Now Patty," you're probably saying. "He's a guy and you have to make allowances for how dirty guys are." Um, I know this. I shared a house with two guys and a was one of three girls among 14 kayaking/climbing guides who shared the main living quarters when I lived in Valdez, AK. Guys can be dirty, thoughtless, tactless, and rude (and to set the record straight, I had no problem living with the guys in Alaska)...but that's not my problem here.

There are a lot of small things Chris does/doesn't do that annoy me to no end. Along with that are a number of little things I can't quantify to reasonably justify my exasperation with him. Let's just say I won't be sad to see him go, but he's signed a year lease...just like me. I'll learn to ignore, adjust, or stop being passive-aggressive, but so help me!

There's my praise for autumn and my venting for my housemate. Two ends of the happiness spectrum.

Monday, October 12, 2009

No Worries!

Hopefully this won't become a habit -- only blogging once a month. Needless to say my life has been a bit hectic. I have a newfound respect for teachers. I never realized how difficult it is to constantly be "on your game" as you're teaching classes while staying current with homework assignment, papers, and readings. Sheesh!

Although I feel overwhelmed quite a bit, I also feel blessed. I live with people who I enjoy...for the most part...and teach students I look forward to seeing every other day...for the most part. I can't have everything the way I want it!

Sage (my chocolate lab) has settled in nicely. My roommate Chris brought his dog, Keaton, to live at the house too and generally speaking Sage ignores Keaton. Heaven forbit Keaton gets too close to me or Sage's toys because then she starts growling. Sage is very possessive. Just a few nights ago Christiana (my housemate) and I were upstairs in the hall just sitting on the floor talking about our days and Sage was chillin next to me. The moment Keaton walked to the top of the stairs and Sage saw her, Sage immediately put a paw across my legs as if to say, "MY human." It was the funniest thing. Christiana and I laughed about it for quite awhile. What was even more funny was that after Sage made her move, Keaton turned around and walked back down the stairs. I guess Sage's point was made.

Class-wise things are going good. I'm still struggling in my Grad-level class, but things are starting to click into place in my mind. Now if I can just find a topic for my paper... German is going well also. I tend to stress about the tests and worry I won't remember everything, but when I get into the classroom & look at the test I just want to kick myself because it's never as hard as I think it's going to be. Must be the overachiever in me.

I have to say the highlight is teaching Freshman English 101. The students have loosened up enough now that they enjoy razzing me when I misspell a word on the board (little snots!) and don't get offended when I tell them to stop complaining and suck it up. They honestly make me smile on a daily basis...because I don't smile enough!

Another long post, but hopefully I'll become a more active blogger. I hope this gets you up-to-date on what's going on with me. Feel free to ask questions in the comment section and I'll try to answer them.

No worries!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

What happened to August?

Alright, so I became a little lax for the month of August...but it was busy!!!

I was busy nailing down a place to live in Moscow, ID that allows me to take a dog (the beautiful Chocolate Lab Sage), finalizing moving plans for the drive from Idaho Falls to Moscow, taking classes about teaching classes, and getting all geared up with lesson plans for the Freshman English classes I'm teaching as well as getting ready for the classes I'm taking. Sheesh!

I'm happy to say the move went without a hitch. I live in a three story house which has a basement apartment, so I live in the ground floor and second story. It's completely furnished, so I didn't have to worry about bringing furniture or anything (heaven knows I brought a lot anyway! A whole U-Haul trailer full). For nearly the entire month of August I lived alone because the landlady was having problems finding people to rent the other rooms to, but Sage and I didn't care because, in addition to having the main house to ourselves, Sage really loves hanging out with the two girls living in the basement. She's taken on the role of protector dog and if she hears something out of the ordinary she tends to make her way downstairs to make sure the girls (Grace and Amanda) are alright. It's kinda cute. Actually, I think Sage is trolling for treats because she knows they have some down there for her (I gave them a bag of the "good" treats to help win Sage over).

For about a week I had a roommate (Mohammed) from Saudi Arabia who's working on his PhD in Engineering, but Sage didn't seem to trust him too much. She always barked when he came into the house and he never petted her. He wound up moving out because "the house is too far away from campus" and he was afraid Sage was waking me up. Whatever! I just think he didn't like Sage and that's fine with me. I think he was a little fishy and Sage picked up on that. Good riddance.

Now it's September 1st and I have two new housemates moving in. One is a girl who isn't going to the University of Idaho, but is working at Starbucks. She's signed a year contract with them and will start moving in today. I haven't met her yet, but I hope all goes well. My other housemate actually moved in yesterday and his name is Chris. He's working on his PhD in Mathematics or something and has his office one floor up from mine in the same building. Sage seems to be taking to him pretty well. She barked at him initially when he came into the house, but how effective is her bark when she's wagging her tail? Apparently Chris has a dog as well that may come to live with us so Sage may have a playmate sometime soon. I really think Sage is going to be fine with Chris because she didn't bark at all when Chris came home last night. Yeah!

Man, this is a long posting!

Classes are going well. So far my German class is pretty easy, but right now we're reviewing a lot of stuff I covered in high school, and luckily I retained most of that. I'm not looking forward to congegations and such! My one grad level class is about Rhetorics in New Media and I'm struggling to keep my head above water right now. The readings are a little crazy as the books are aimed at professors and such so they talk a bit above my normal reading level. My brain hurts when I read them and I struggle to make sense of it...but that's what I signed up for. I'm learning. There are only about 11 students in my class, two of which are working on their PhD's in Philosophy, so sometimes the round-table discussions get a little overwhelming, but I'm learning!

Teaching is going great! At least I think so. I'm really enjoying the experience and I hope my students don't dread coming to class. I try to make it light and fun, but sometimes it's like pulling teeth to get a response from the class. It is getting better as the semester goes on because they're getting more comfortable with me and each other. I think I have found my calling because I'm enjoying it so much. Now I just have to decided (sometime in the next two years) if I want to go on and get my PhD so I can teach college or consider teaching at the high school level. Hmmm....

That's about all for now except for the weather...WHEN WILL IT GET COOLER! I'm definitely a fall kinda gall and love sweater weather. I can't wait for that! Till then I'll just keep sweating away as I walk up and down hills on this beautiful campus!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Do Student Drivers Really Have THAT Much Power?

So....I woke up late for work yesterday and was rushing (not excessively speeding, mind you) across town in a futile effort to get to work on time. As I'm driving 45-ish in a 45 MPH zone I suddenly came to a clog of cars on the road. No one was going over 40 one. I switched lanes in hopes that my new lane would be going just a little bit faster so I could inch my way closer to work. I assummed, naturally, that there was a law enforcement vehicle (city, county, state police, etc.) in the lane so everyone was meticulously checking their speedometers and avoiding a traffic ticket.

However, since I worked for a police department for 8+ years and realize that cops are people too, I understand that going a few miles over the speed limit AND PASSING A COP ON THE ROAD will not automatically make you the proud recipient of a speeding ticket.

Back to my the lane I was in was going a little faster than the other lane and when I was able to see who was actually going the speed limit and slowing down all of the traffic I saw, not a police vehicle, but a student driver. WHAT?!?!?!? Since when are student drivers on par with police officers?

After thinking about this I've come to the conclusion that, in an effort to be a good example to the student driver, all the other drivers actually followed the rules of the road (aka: mirror check, head check, signal, etc.). Maybe there was a sudden and inexplicable outpouring of empathy from everyone as they mentally reverted back to their days as a newbie driver in a car.

I don't know, but I was gobsmacked. C'mon people! I'm late for work! Needless to say I eventually passed the student driver and continued on my merry, law breaking way.

NOTE: Just to reassure you, Mom and Dad, I really wasn't a speed demon...just a handful of miles over the speed limit...and I was only 15 minutes late. Not bad considering I woke up 15 minutes before I was supposed to be at work!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Beware: It's a jungle out there

I'll admit that as I'm writing this I'm supposed to be working at my office (temp) job...but I need a break from folding 500+ monthly statements and stuffing envelopes.

So as I've been "working", I've been people watching out the window. In my voyeuristic pursuits I was watching the mailman (mailperson if you want to be politically correct) getting the office mail from the mailbox. At that moment I realized the mailman (because he is actually a man) was wearing a pith helmet.

Someone answer me this, since when has a pith helmet been needed to pick up and deliver mail? Are so many cats chasing you down the street in their desire to thwart the delivery of the mail so numerous that head protection is needed? Is it so dangerous to open and shut mailbox doors and lower flags? Is the threat of papercuts so prevalent that head protection is needed? I think not.

What's next, office cleaning crews wearing Haz-Mat suits? Okay...that one I can see, especially if they're headed into the bathrooms.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Um, I think my water broke...

So those were the words I heard at my temporary office job right after lunch. The girl I'm covering for has been having contractions for over a week (not steady and not for extended periods of time) and then she calmly informed me her water broke. Okay, so as an E-911 operator I have given instructions over the phone to assist childbirth, give CPR, call in a SWAT team, etc., but I was not prepared for those words, "Um, I think my water broke."

Needless to say a bunch of phone calls were made (doctor, husband, father, mother, in-laws, etc.) and the expectant Amanda was headed to the hospital. A scant 3.5 hours later her little girl, Taya, was born. Welcome to the world!

So the calendar is counting down and Grad school is fast approaching. In addition to still figuring out where to live (anyone have a friend of a friend of a cousin thrice removed that's looking to rent to someone at a reasonable price?) I got my reading list for my "Rhetorics of New Media" English class. Um, who ever thought that a book entitled Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy would be an interesting read? Or how about The Economics of Attention: Style and Substance in the Age of Information. I don't recall that on the New York Times Bestseller list. What happened to great books by authors like Poe, Hawthorne, Tan, Sinclair, Pound, Morrison, etc?

Oh well, my lot isn't to complain, but to acquire more knowledge...and torture the college Freshman English classes I teach in the fall. -insert evil cackle here- Let the fun begin!

Friday, June 12, 2009


I am a wuss. I fully admit it and don't understand how people do it. I am sooooooo tired right now I'm having problems keeping my eyes open and typing this blog. I have now acquired two jobs and am working 60+ hours a week. While that's good for the pocket, it's bad for the relaxation as I literally work every day of the week. A slow day is only 5 hours of work, while a busy day requires me to be up between 6 & 6:30 am to get dressed and make it to my job at 8am where I work until 5pm and then rush (not agressive driving rush, but constantly looking at the clock in the car rush) to my next job where I work until 11pm, all to wake up and do it over again the next day.


what? Oh, sorry. I fell asleep there.

What was I saying? Who cares...I'm headed to bed.

Peace out!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Are there really that many one-legged people in the world?

Already a busy morning. I was woken up, not by my alarm, but by my sister asking if I could take one of her dogs into the vet to get a leg looked at and re-stitched. This will be the third time in a week this dog, a black lab named Ash, has visited the vet. Being the nice person I am I woke up and turned of my alarm--we all know I didn't need it anymore this morning--got dressed and took the little poop to the vet. Ash did need to be stitched up again (I guess when the vet tells you not to let the dog lick/scratch their stitches they mean it). In order to combat the damage I headed right over to Petco--where the pets go--and got a lovely halo-collar-thingy. The dog accessory that makes people think your dog is either 1) mentally handicapped 2) a rabid beast or 3) pathetic and/or miserable. Ash is definitely #3. We then returned home and have been cuddling on the couch. Ash really does look miserable. When she walks she just hangs her head down like the collar weighs six thousand pounds! Who knew dogs could be so dramatic.

Anyway, back to the title of this posting: Are there really that many one-legged people in the world? Seriously. While playing pet taxi driver I've already seen three random shoes in the middle of the road. At what point in your life do you not recognize you are missing a shoe? Are you that drunk? In a bout of "craziness" did you decide to reenact your late night escapades at a strip club? Did your friends tackle you in the car and strip your clothes off you, tossing them out the car window as they drove down the street (NOTE: there were no other clothes on the roadway to substantiate this hypothesis)? Or are there really that many one-legged people who, after buying a pair of shoes, decide to just toss the superfluous shoe out the window?

Maybe this is one of those questions we'll never really know the answer to. That and why are we asked to call a phone number if our total is incorrect in the Taco Bell drive-through, wouldn't we just tell the employee at the window taking our money and giving us food? Hmm....

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Where is home?

It's been said that home is where you hang your hat, or where your heart is, or a place you can never return to. If that's the case, where's this elusive "home" everyone refers to? More importantly (because this is my blog), where is MY home?

Is my home Alaska--since that is where I was born; or the Puget Sound, Washington area because that's where I lived during my "formative" years? Maybe Walla Walla, Washington is where I should call home because that's where a majority of my education occurred (junior high+high school+community college = 8 years). How about the Lewiston, ID/Clarkston,WA valley since that's the first place I forged onward and lived on my own for the first time. I currently reside in Idaho Falls, ID, so should I call here home? If so, then what about Moscow, ID, the place I'm moving to in a few weeks for graduate school? Is that just a blip on a moving map? Will I be able to call Moscow home?

If home really is where your hat hangs, then Idaho Falls is home now, but Moscow will be in the future. But if it's where my heart is then my home is splintered. My heart is comprised of family and friends that I love, but most of which live in various parts of the country. If home is a place I can never return to, then all is lost.

What do you think? What is your definition of home, and do you live at your home? Will I ever find my home? Will Batman and Robin ever be able to stop Penguin? Tune in to the next episode at the same Bat-time and on the same Bat-channel.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Where I get the REAL news

I am someone who doesn't subscribe to newspapers. Like so many other people I like to get my news now. I don't understand the need to check facts or cite sources, just give it to me now! Sure, I peruse the sites of cnn, msn, google, new york times, etc., but I've found the most reliable news source on the internet is The Onion. They take complicated and confusing stories and make them relatable to me. I've always wondered at how a child spelling bee's brain works and they help me understand with the video entitled, "Special Boy With Freakishly Large Brain Wins Spelling Bee" (link here:, or useful ideas like "How to Wax Your Floors Without Slipping and Severing Your Spine" (link:

So for those of you tired of reading boring and well-researched news articles, I suggest you click on over to and get some REAL news.

Monday, May 11, 2009

I'm Employed!

So I finally found a job (20-30hrs a week, which is really all I want), but it's definitely not one I'm hoping to pursue as a career. Are you ready to learn what it is? Wait for it...

...I work in a bowling alley. Yep, you heard right, a bowling alley. But it's not even the "cool" job of handing out smelly, used shoes and stuff, I work in the "food/bar" area. Good thing I worked at Dairy Queen in high school, because that experience comes in handy now! So I make food, give out drinks, pour pints and pitchers of beer, etc. The person training me found it funny that I had to learn how to pour a draft of beer and how to make coffee. Um, duh! So, things are going fine. Like I said, not my dream job, but it'll pay the bills and it's only for the summer until I head north for Grad School. I can do anything for a few months, even handle smelling like beer when I get off work. Pee-yew!

Luckily I work the closing shift, so I get to sleep in during the day and still get plenty of work done around the house (yardwork, painting, have dinner waiting for my sister, etc.). All-in-all, not bad, but not good either. -sigh- I can't wait for school in the fall!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

My Babies are Growing!

Okay, my title is a bit misleading, but true nonetheless. My "babies" are all of the flower seeds I planted last month. Silly me, I thought we were done getting snow so I planted, but just two days later we got more snow. -sigh- I wasn't sure my flowers would grow, but I see little green things poking out of the dirt so I'm crossing my fingers! For heaven's sake, something's got to grow--I planted enough seeds.

Unfortunately, that's my highlight. What a depressing and boring life I lead. Still dropping off resume's everywhere hoping for a job. Cross your eyes that I'll find one soon!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Shout out to the Mothers!

Just a little something for the moms and future moms (congrats Julie!)...

Although in come countries women are considered second-class citizens do those men even realize how much power women/mothers wield? We can try to change the world by writing laws, rules, persuasive speaking, using force, etc., but imagine how much change would be accomplished if every mother in the world decided what values and ideals they would instill/teach their children. Now, I'm not saying the would would be a utopian society and everything would become perfect (because we all know some moms would be more successful than others), but consider the possibilities! A kinder, gentler world? Perhaps.

All I know is that when someone compliments me about some trait I have, I say "thank you," but really recognize that a large portion of who I am is because of my mom and dad.

So thanks to all the mothers and fathers out there. We love you!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Limbo, Limbo, Limbo

Don't you just love to limbo? I know I do. I love the raucous music, laughter from the crowd, and insecurity of whether or not I'll make it under the bar one more time or fall flat on my back in front of everyone. Hmmm... is limbo really all that much fun? To be honest, not really. I rue the day Chubby Checker released his song, "Limbo Rock".

Now, the limbo is fun for a little while, but it eventually gets old, and that's where I'm at. I will admit I liked the two or so weeks after graduating where I didn't really have anywhere I had to go or anything I had to do, but I'm bored!

By mutual decision between the Manager and myself, I decided not to return to Alaska this year and work because they deserve someone who can work longer than 2 1/2 months for them...among other reasons. So I went looking for another job and I interviewed for one in Moscow, ID, but I was gobsmacked when I didn't get it. -sigh- So now I'm scrambling looking for another job for the summer. I don't feel right applying for a job and only being around for 3 months or so, so I've applied to Substitute Teach as well as work for a Temp Agency. We'll see how those go...

Limbo Rock by Chubby Checker

Every limbo boy and girl
All around the limbo world
Gonna do the limbo rock
All around the limbo clock
Jack be limbo, Jack be quick
Jack go unda limbo stick
All around the limbo clock
Hey, let's do the limbo rock

Limbo lower now
Limbo lower now
How low can you go

First you spread your limbo feet
Then you move to limbo beat
Limbo ankolimboneee,
Bend back like a limbo tree
Jack be limbo, Jack be quick
Jack go unda limbo stick
All around the limbo clock
Hey, let's do the limbo rock

la la la etc (instead of instrumental break)

Get yourself a limbo girl
Give that chic a limbo whirl
There's a limbo moon above
You will fall in limbo love
Jack be limbo, Jack be quick
Jack go unda limbo stick
All around the limbo clock
Hey, let's do the limbo rock

Don't move that limbo bar
You'll be a limbo star
How low can you go

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Stay-at-home Mom with no Kids!

Soooo....I've officially signed up for my Graduate classes for the fall. -sigh- It's real! Another two years of schooling and then I'll have to decide about pursuing my PhD after Grad School or working a bit and then getting it. Decisions, decisions, but I have a couple more years until I have to make that one.

Referring back to the title of this blog, for the past week I've felt a bit like a stay-at-home mom who has no kids. Becca went to visit Susan and her new baby girl last week so I had the "opportunity" to dog-sit (oh, and pack, and clean, and sort through my stuff, and...well, you get the idea). Honestly, I don't mind the dogs and it helps that I'm definitely more a "dog person" than cat, but it did get a bit frustrating at the end of the week when the dogs were just following me around the house. Sheesh! Go outside and play, or pee, on something already!

I've decided to postpone my visit to Susan, by a week, to help acclimate another dog into Becca's wild pack (three and counting!). Now there are two labs (one chocolate and one black), and a boxer to contend with. The introduction was a little touch and go for a bit as Sage, the chocolate lab, wanted to go all dominant on Ash, the new black lab, but it all worked out in the end. The dogs spent a nice day on Sunday playing tag in the backyard sprinkler and wrestling.

Me? I'm working on my tan as I work in the yard and I live in limbo with half of my stuff packed and waiting to hear if I have a job for the summer. Hopefully I'll know soon and I can get on with my plans.

This week has really shown me how I like to be constantly on the go or doing something. I go, go, go all day and often wonder what I accomplished. Luckily I have Becca as a sounding board at the end of the day and we talk about what we did and, when I start listing things off, I surprise myself with the list of tasks completed. Hmmm...maybe that's why sometimes I like to make lists and cross things off, because then I get to have a tangible accounting of what I've done.

Sorry, no deep thoughts in this post, just disjointed recollections. Here's another one...I love the weather we're having this week! Sunshine and 60-degrees. Nearly perfect! Mother Nature, keep it coming.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

And there you have it folks...

...a whirling dervish with no purpose and/or direction...or does it?

Whirling Dervish (wurl-ing dur-vish) n. 1. A mystical
dancer who stands between the material and cosmic
worlds. His dance is part of a sacred ceremony
in which the dervish rotates in a precise rhythm.
He represents the earth revolving on its axis while
orbiting the sun. The purpose of the ritual whirling
is for the dervish to empty himself of all distracting
thoughts, placing him in trance; released from
his body he conquers dizziness.

I'm homeless. That's how I'd love to start this entry, but it's not true. I have a family that loves me (and luckily a number of sisters that tolerate me) and a general direction, but nothing clear-cut. Right now I'm working on moving out of Becca's house and then spending some time with Susan (and the new baby) for a few weeks. Will I be a help or a hindrance to her? Time will tell.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm putting off being an adult and indulging in a "Peter Pan" syndrome. Okay, so I worked 8 years for a police department and then decided to go back to school, but am I hiding from the decisions adults make? Hmmm...that may be a deep topic for another time.

What I do know is that I will be getting my M.A. in English at the University of Idaho (Moscow, ID) in the fall. Additionally, I'll have the pleasure of warping young freshman minds as I teach a few courses of Composition/Literature. He. He. He.

I have to admit, while I initially considered U of I as my fallback school, everything has come together to make it the right place for me. I'll be closer to my family, back near friends I miss, scenery I love (whitewater rafting anyone?), and being one step closer to my goal of teaching college English.

Because of scheduling conflicts, I won't be able to return to Alaska this summer. I'm holding out hope for next summer. I was looking forward to some more sea kayaking, trying some ice climbing (am I weird to like the thought of climbing with a pick and crampons on my feet?), and also getting some nice whitewater kayaking in. Wow! I sound a little bit like an adventurer. At least I won't be dodging grizzlies this summer!

Oh, yeah. I graduate tomorrow from BYU-I. Yeah! No more taking classes I am not interested in (anything to do with advertising, math, or science). I am looking forward to meeting my newest niece, as soon as Susan has her. Will that be number 20 or 21? Maybe it's #23. I've lost count!!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

I'm Accepted!!!

Is it sad of me to feel glad when I get accepted? Whether it's as a "friend" on Facebook or into Graduate School? I received my first acceptance letter into Graduate School and can you guess where it was? University of Idaho. Who knows? Maybe I'll be heading back to my old stomping grounds in the fall. They definitely have location going for it as well as the fact they have a PhD program as well that I can fast-track into, hopefully cutting a year off my doctorate. Man! That sounds so grown up...and so far away.

I haven't received any rejections yet, so that's a good sign. Is my ego so fragile it will break into a million pieces if I don't get in everywhere I applied? I think I'll be okay, especially since I know at least one school wants me...let's hope that's the first of many acceptances.

A girl's gotta have options!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy Saint ME Day!

You know I had to post since today's St. Patty's Day. I need to let my loyal followers and minions have words of wisdom from their leader..."Beware a green Yak. It may Yak."

You're welcome and have a good day!

Monday, March 16, 2009

New and Improved

So, I've moved my blog to I've found it's more user friendly than my old one and it enables me to have a cleaner design.

I'm sure you're wondering what's up with Patty? Well, I'm graduating April 10, 2009 from Brigham Young University--Idaho (but will not be walking). I will finally have my B.S. in English (B.S.--doesn't that seem fitting? I think so. I've definitely learned to B.S. my way through a lot of papers!). I've submitted my applications to Graduate School, but don't expect to hear back before graduation.

Let's, I've had a paper accepted to the National Undergraduate Literature Conference in April. This is my second year and it's kinda a big deal. Undergrads from all over the country (Yale, UNLV, UCLA, Harvard, BYU, BYU-Idaho, etc.) submit works they've written, hoping to present it at the conference. It's a nice break from schoolwork, unfortunately the conference comes the weekend before finals, so no one from our school is really cutting loose. We all tend to scurry back to our rooms at night to study for exams. -sigh- only 18 more days of classes!!!

Um, that's about all I have right now, but I'll work on cutting and pasting my other posts to this blog, as well as downloading some pictures.