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30 May 2009

My genius plan

As you may have heard, I'm moving on the 10th. I've decided that I'm going to take the five days after the move to really settle into my new house. After that, I'm going to hit the library and take out a ton of materials for my prospectus. On the 20th, I'm attending a wedding shower, and, at 3am on the 21st, I am driving home to NY to surprise my dad for Father's Day. And when I get there, I am going to stay in NY for TWO FULL WEEKS!! I haven't been home in over a year, and I need to get back there and recharge my batteries and get in touch with where I come from. I'll take a suitcase full of prospectus work and do a bit each day, but I figure that, if I'm not working a paying job, I can just as easily work on the project from NY as I can from here.

Yeah for the month of June!!

29 May 2009

June 10th it is!

I officially move in 10 days. Wow. I've done a lot to prepare. I've hired packers and movers, arranged for my utilities to be cut off (although I haven't arranged for the electric to be turned on at my new place!), and have set up a time to meet with my subleter. I'm pretty excited!!


28 May 2009

Memorial Day in Our Nation's Capital

I spent Memorial Day in DC with The Boy, moving him into his new place. We did a bit of sightseeing. He had never been to Arlington or the Vietnam War Memorial, so I took him. The Wall was closed for a ceremony, so we didn't get there, but we had a great time doing everything else. 

The Marine Corps Memorial

A close-up showing the years that my brother was over there serving in the Gulf.

Old Abe, looking stately as ever.

The outside of the memorial. Not a bad pic.

Arlington National Cemetery. 
An appropriate place to spend a day of remembrance.

Always moving and humbling.

So, who knew that the FDR memorial was so awesome? We'd never been because it's buried out on the Tidal Basin, but it is totally awesome! It has a ton of statues and waterfall and quotations from his various terms. Pretty cool.

Here we have poor farmer and his wife. Most likely victims of the Dust Bowl.

Some men waiting for the dole.

A sad and beaten man listening to the radio, hoping for good news from FDR.

The man himself, wheelchair and all.

Up close and personal.
A pretty waterfall with an inspiring quotation.
These were on a big roll that was used to make a relief mural. It's pretty cool.

Words to live by.

Cute scotty dog!!! (It reminds me of Bentley!!)
The Jefferson from across the basin.
Me and The Boy, chillin' with George Mason. He was a big guy.
Jefferson Memorial
And no trip to DC is complete without some Washington Monument pics.
We had a really good time. Of course, I'll be spending quite a few weekends up there, so there will be more pictures to come!

Life update

I write this in the midst of a torrential downpour. Seriously, my apartment almost flooded. It was bad. I had to go out and "sweep" the rain buildup off of my patio. But, resourceful me saved the day! And my plants all got a free watering, so I'm pretty stoked about that!

Some exciting things have happened today! Last night I showed my apartment to potential subleters, and the first girl said she wanted it. I was happy, until she told me that she wanted to move in earlier than June 20th. I told her that I would see what I could do and let her know. Packing and moving my entire place in ten days is pretty daunting, so my stomach immediately wound up into a knot. I called the new complex today and, as it turns out, the apartment that I want (the BIG one with 2 bedrooms, 1.5 bath, 1100 square feet, and a BIG screened-in porch) was currently on special as long as I moved in by the 10th! I'll be getting $100 off my rent every month for the next year!!! So I'm getting the bigger apartment for the smaller apartment's price. I'm pretty happy about this. I'm taking it as a sign that I'm supposed to be doing this. Now I need to find movers ...

The great thing is that Cary Academy pays for relocation expenses. I'm hiring people to pack this place up and then move it. Yeah!!!! Excited about that!! I hate packing, especially if I only have 10 days to do so. I LOVE unpacking because it is like opening presents. I love setting up a new house because I kinda like to nest. But the packing and moving is what kills me. I'm ever-so-thankful that I can hire people to pack it all up and move it out (and, eventually, in). I've got two different moving companies coming by tomorrow morning to give me a quote on the whole process. I'm pretty excited.

I told AT that the 9th was my last official day as a member of management. I'm REALLY excited about that. I love the discount, but that place is wearing me down. I hope to stay on as a casual employee, but we'll see how that works. 

I also signed my Cary Academy contract today! I'm SUPER excited about that.

(P.S. I'll be posting my DC pics soon!)

23 May 2009

Anxieties eased

I've found a place to live!!!!!!! It's a pretty decent place as well. Of course, rent out there is much more expensive than I am used to, but that is what you get when you move to a bigger city. That and the fact that Cary has been on the Top 10 Places to Live in America for five years in a row. I can afford more, but I've been pretty spoiled in the last year. My current rent is super low for a rather big space. I'll be renting the same space, but my rent is going up by about $200. Boo!!! But I do get a teachers' discount, so that is cool!!!

DC bound!! ... Almost

The Boy left first thing this morning to head up to DC for his summer internship. I have to work all day today and plan to head to DC in the morning. I'll be staying up there with him until Tuesday morning when I return to the 'boro and have to go to work.

I'm excited about heading up there. I haven't been to DC since the spring of '05 when I was a chaperone for the 8th grade trip in the school where I was working. I've always loved DC. It's so much fun. I've been there more time than I can count. I don't think I want to live there, but I love how you can do so much for FREE! My favorite price!! I really enjoy watching other people experience "history" for the first time and watching their reactions. It's like experiencing everything all over again for the first time. The Boy has never been to Arlington, so we'll probably head out there on Monday for Memorial Day (along with half of the rest of America!). We're also going to be doing some fine dining in either Georgetown (where he is staying) or somewhere else in the city. It'll be a nice break!

I'll be sure to post some pictures in the coming days!

21 May 2009

When can I buy a house?

I've moved 8 times in the last 9 years. This will make it 9 in the last 10. BOOOOOOOO!

My life = Happy chaos

I'm trying desperately to find a place to live in Raleigh/Cary. I'm planning on moving near the end of June (one short month away!!!) and have yet to find a place to call my own. I'm not stressed about that. Of course, give me a few more weeks with no luck, and I'll be in a dead panic. Aside from finding a place, I need to pack. Ugh. I hate that part. Luckily, the school pays moving expenses! Yeah for that. MB is hiring a truck AND movers to move her shit. (You're off the hook, MealyMel!)

I'm also in the midst of finding a subleter for my place. I think I may have found a guy and his wife, but he can't see it until this weekend. We'll see how that works out.

I haven't got my contract from Cary Academy yet, but I have a really good idea of what to expect. If the salary is what I am expecting (which is nothing to sneeze at!), I'll be attempting to negotiate for additional years of teaching credit. They are most likely going to give me 3 years of full-time teaching credit, and I want at least 4. To my knowledge, they aren't considering my college teaching. I'd like them to consider at least some of it. It makes a big difference in my salary. Each year of teaching credit equals about $2500 in salary credit. I'd like all of the money I can get, right? Not to be greedy, of course!! I'm taking the job whether my negotiations work or not!!!

So, that's where my life is right now. It's pretty exciting to have all this going on!!

18 May 2009

And the blessings pour down!

I don't know what happened, but I must have done something good. God is certainly smiling down on me for some reason. Whatever the reason, I am truly happy and truly blessed. Why, you ask?

Because Cary Academy called today to offer me the job!! And the baseline pay (which I'll negotiate a bit) is VERY liveable!!! I am so excited for this opportunity. I'll get to be back in the classroom again and working with middle school students. I'll be working in a school environment that fosters intellectual and emotional growth and development and doesn't rely solely on "teaching to the test" to "achieve" success. I'll have freedom to be creative and innovative, and I'll have an amazing opportunity to incorporate technology into my classroom and instruction. This is such an amazing Godsend. I couldn't ask to be more blessed.

Now Iget to apartment hunt in the Triangle! And I'll live close to some of my favorite people!!! Of course, that means leaving some of my other favorite people behind, but I'm sure they'll understand!

16 May 2009

I itch, therefore I am

Whatever it is that is making me itch -- poison oak, poison ivy, poison sumac, or something else poison -- is driving me insane! My entire shoulder is red and blistery, and it has moved onto the left side of my chin. I've got it on the webbing between the fingers on my left hand. I think it's spreading to the tender area behind my right ear. Needless to say, I'm miserable.

Pictures of my misery to come.

15 May 2009

My DC Summer

The Boy is spending the summer in DC on a job internship. He found a cute little basement apartment in Georgetown which is considerably cheaper than the student housing that the program offered, so he is excited. I am as well. I'm planning to spend every other weekend up there, visiting. It should be fun. I love DC and always find such fun things to do. Plus everything (or, at least most things!) is free! I love all of the museums and monuments!! And then there are the restaurants and wine and all of those good things!

EX-cited!!! :D

I think I've got the herp ...

or at least a bad rash from Mother Nature. My right shoulder is COVERED with an itchy rash and it's moving up my neck. I'm pretty sure it's poison ivy. Stupid poisonous plants!!! B was rolling around in the yard at The Boy's house the other day, and I remember distinctly cuddling with her the following morning. If she got in the ivy, the oils would remain on her skin because hair doesn't absorb the oil. Booo!!!! So now I'm an itchy, scratchy mess. And I look pretty horrible as well. Stupid dog.

This... ....  NOT this ...

14 May 2009

Good things on the horizon

Elon emailed me yesterday and offered me a full-time teaching position for the fall and the spring. I'm still waiting to hear from Cary, but things look pretty good on that front as well. It would be pretty nice to actually have options -- GOOD options -- in the coming weeks!

10 May 2009

Interview Update

My interview went rather well last week. I really enjoyed my visit and would love the opportunity to work there. It's a fabulous school that really focuses on the educational and developmental needs of the students and pays no real attention to testing and No Child Left Behind. I feel that I could really grow and develop in that environment. Honestly, this could be the job, should they choose to hire me, that I work for the next twenty years. Or more.

Of course, if they don't choose me, I'm okay with that. It's a weird feeling, but I would LOVE the job, but, at the same time, I'd be okay if I didn't get it. During my interview, I was true to myself and presented myself in an authentic manner. I didn't say what they wanted to hear or what I though sounded good. I said exactly what I truly think and feel. I was honest with my beliefs and theories of pedagogy and practices and classroom management and the whole ball of wax. If, after that, they don't think that I am a good fit for their school then they are probably right. I was who I truly am, and, if they didn't like it, then I am okay with that.

If I do get this job, it means some major changes in my life. Aside from packing up and moving and starting all over again, I would be postponing my dissertation work. Not postponing it so much as prolonging it. Instead of completing it in a year and a half, I'll be looking at three or so. We'll see though. I still haven't heard from the school, so this is all hypothetical!

04 May 2009

Life Update

The last week, specifically the last four days, have FLOWN by. My life is in a happy turmoil, and I have some promising possibilities before me. Let me tell you the story.

Thursday morning, during my 10am class, I was reading a student response. She mentioned Cary Academy. I was curious as to what this was, so I did a quick internet search. I found out that it is a highly elite and prestigious prep school in Cary, NC., and, coincidentally, they are hiring a 6th grade English teacher. For quote some time I have been thinking about pursuing a career in private education. I LOVE middle school teaching and feel that I "fit" better there than I do at the university. Don't get me wrong. I love college teaching, but I don't LOVE it. So, I figured I'd apply, but I was really nervous that I was too late (all of the other positions had recently been filled.). I called the school to inquire about the closing date for application submissions, and they told me that they were already screening applications. I expressed my disappointment, and that began a brief conversation about who I am and what I am doing. Before the end of the conversation, the woman on the other end told me to send along my information anyway. So, before I went to AT, I sent off my CV. 

In the meantime, Elon notified me that they have renewed me for the fall for two sections. :)

Friday morning, after a few cocktails at the bar, I decided to sleep in. Of course, as is my luck, the phone rang at 8:15am. I was about to ignore the phone call when I noticed the number was a Raleigh area code. I decided to pick up in case it was Cary Academy. It was!!! The woman on the phone, assistant to the Head of the Middle School, wanted me to have a phone interview with the Head at 10am. Of course I said "yes!"

10am came, and I ended up speaking with the Head for over an hour and fifteen minutes!! She really liked me and asked me to come out this week for an on-campus interview. I would teach a lesson, meet some faculty and board members, and have a second interview. I am soooooo excited! I'm heading out on Thursday afternoon and staying into Friday. They offered to pay for my hotel!! OF course, I refused and told them that I would stay with friends in Durham.

I have been praying every day multiple times that this works out. This could really be the job that I spend the next ten years (or more!) at. It's kinda my dream job.  I'm so excited that I can't even sleep!!


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