Monday, February 23, 2015

Ramblings, Realizations & Being Stood Up

You know what sucks? Being stood up. Maybe I shouldn't admit this but…I finally got up the courage to go to therapy, no reason in particular because I have come a LONG way fixing myself. There were a few things that I've had been having trouble with - mainly with insecurities and having trouble opening up and connecting beyond the acquaintance level(due to experiences in the past.) Even those I've come a long way with handling myself and I've been opening up a ton lately, which has been a bit overwhelming but it hasn't been as bad as I thought. Anyway…

Well, I've been toying with the idea that maybe I should talk with someone, kind of get another perspective and mainly just encouragement and validation that I am heading in the right direction. I sorted through a bunch via emails and phone and finally found what I thought was the perfect one…most of the others that I spoke with one the phone and via email specialized in addiction, and all these things that I didn't have a problem with. Then I found one. One that deal with personal issues stemming from past experiences. It almost sounded too perfect. I made an appointment, took the morning off from work..

Well, I was stood up. The person never showed. I arrived at the office, slightly nervous, not really knowing what to expect, but I was positive. I checked in and was told "have a and so isn't here yet" So I waited. And waited. Finally after a half hour of waiting, I went back to the desk to ask for an update. Needing to get to work, I left my number at the desk and went to work. I was a little peeved to be honest. And my first few hours at work, I was a little flustered and screwed up a few thing, but it was nothing major... But it confirmed a few things for me. By the end of the day, I was feeling great.

I realized that I didn't need validation & I also realized that I know the answers. I know how I am. I know I'm different than most. I actually like the way I am. I'm unique in the sense that I don't feel the need to fit in or follow the crowd(tried that. Miserable!).. For so long I've been told being the way that I am is wrong. Recently though, I've just been being myself and have gotten positive feedback. Certain people have lost contact with because I've stopped living to please them. It feels wrong sometimes, but  finally I realize that it's okay to not please everyone. I KNOW I am headed in the right direction and KNOW exactly what I need to do. I don't need anyone to tell me.

 I realized I am not the same person I was before. Not even close I was more irritated than feeling sorry for myself, which had this happened a few years ago, I probably would have sunk into a deep depression and thought of every possible thing I could have done wrong to make this person hate me enough that they couldn't keep the appointment. I was more irritated because I like routine, and going in late for nothing kind of screwed up my whole mindset. Lol

I also realized that I can't rely on anyone else to make me happy. And I realized that for the first time in a long time that I am actually happy. AND THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT! Honestly, I've been feel bad, because I feel happy. You'd think when divorce or separation or the words "alone" are brought into the picture I'd be miserable, sad and depressed… -I get sad at times. But Im in a good place. A place I should have been at before I got married. But I was young, insecure and afraid of being alone. I'm not anymore. The only thing I am afraid of is not being happy.

When I got out of work that day,I texted my sister what happened. She couldn't believe I had been stood up by a therapist. Oh well. She told me her experiences  with therapy, and told me when she saw me in October, she could tell I was in the right frame of mind. I just emitted a different energy than I had before. I seemed a lot happier. I seemed more confident. Still myself, but a better version.  She suggested rather than get down in the dumps, go do something that I like.

She suggested, getting my nails done, get a hair cut, dye it a different color. Well, I cut my own hair,  I don't dye my hair, do my nails, or any of that other girly girl stuff. But I am very much a girly girl.  I do however love clothes, but I am a cheap son of a gun and hate spending money and don't care about brand - as long as they look good. That's all that matters.  I love dressing up so I was in search of a cute dress to wear to work. I headed to my Go to place, for cheap but nice clothes and found this awesome dress - ON SALE!!!

Around 9 that night, my iPhone chimed indicating I had an email. I checked it and laughed. It was from the person that stood me up. They assumed because of the snow two days ago that I couldn't have made the appointment, so they ran an errand. I just laughed and deleted the email.

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Saturday, February 21, 2015

Project Life: I caved

Yeah. I did it. I caved. I bought an actual Project Life kit. For a while I've been going back and fourth about project life. Some days I'd see so much inspiration and feel inspired. Then some days I'd think my life is too uninteresting and boring to be able to fill a page, much less an album. Then I thought I wanted to do it digitally. Then I thought I'd just do my own version. Well…

Clearly I think way too stinking much. But you guys already knew that. ;).  Scrapbooking is supposed to be fun. So I thought some more. I have a corner of my bedroom chock full of supplies, unused, collecting dust. Why were they not being used? Can you guess? I think too much. I love scrapbooking. I truly do. But I focus too much on finding the perfect way of scrapbooking that I end up not scrapbooking at all.

Since I've been wanting to do some version of Project life for some time, I decided to just cave and buy a kit. There is no need to reinvent the wheel or trying to find the prefect way. What I really want is to document my memories which wasn't happening because I was focusing on the wrong thing.

Don't laugh, but it was torture standing there in Michaels trying to pick which kit I wanted to start with…I chose one. Then looked at another one. And another. I listened to my gut and picked one. I walked around the store to pick up a few more things then circled my way back to look at the kits again.

I think I spent another 15 minutes cursing silently wishing I had the income to buy all of them so I didn't have to choose. Eventually I ended up choosing the 5th and Frolic core kit because the color scheme matched my style - the color scheme that I actually like, not the one I try to convince myself I like to try to be trendy and match everyone else's style.

 I need to stop thinking so much...but that's a story for another post!

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Monday, February 16, 2015

Beer & Cheddar Soup

I don't know about you guys but I am soooo ready for spring! Here in frigid Massachusetts, we've had a snow storm pretty much every week. And it's been so cold. I keep joking with my sister that lives out in California that I'm going to be moving out there soon…at the rate of snow we're getting…I don't know if I'm going to be joking anymore. I am seriously considering it. I say this every winter though…one day it will happen.

Maybe. Lol.

In the meantime, I'll just keep making comforting foods to warm my insides until the sun decides to show it's face again to melt the mountains of snow we have out here now. One of those warm and comforting dishes I made the other day was Beer and Cheddar Soup. 

Soup and Beer. How can you go wrong!? Both are comforting and both warm the insides. :-) And when combined you get this delicious warm and comforting food.

Beer and Cheddar Soup

  • 1 1/2 cups diced carrots
  • 1 1/2 cups diced onion
  • 1 1/2 cups diced celery
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups beer
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 4 cups milk
  • 6 cups shredded  Cheddar cheese
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

In a large saucepan melt butter and sauté carrots, onions, and celery until tender. Stir in flour. Gradually whisk in chicken broth and beer; add salt, pepper, mustard, hot sauce, and Worcestershire. Bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer for 10 minutes. Add milk - DO NOT BOIL - stir in cheese until melted. Serve warm.

Serve this soup with a simple Cesar salad and you will be warmed up in no time.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Wednesday rambling: superwoman I am not

That's hard to forget sometimes. I want to finish my degree so I took on classes full time, I want to blog, I want to scrapbook, I want to bake everything from scratch, I want to spent ample time with everyone I care about, I want to have fun. I have to keep reminding myself that I can't do everything- which is hard but when I try to do everything I just get burnt out and overwhelmed.

still love my job. It's getting more involved and I am feeling fulfilled and satisfied in that aspect. Sometimes I worry though that I'm not doing a good enough job or that I will screw something up..that's not where my overwhelmed feelings are. They are from:

School...yeah. I took on too much. Taking classes full time, while working full time being a mom, etc is just way too much. I'm burning out fast. Also the school I go to while they offer night/online classes they are not very conducive to adult learners. Before I go any further I will say I get that in real life there are deadlines and  work needs to be put into obtaining a degree but I also think people who are balancing work/life/family/school shouldn't be held to standards as day students fresh out of high school and just from my experiences this school doesn't get that. It's not just even me. I've spoken with a lot of students that have run in to the same problem.

Like my English class last semester- 12 books. That was a little excessive. When we as a class mentioned that we attend school at night because we work full time and are balancing families, and other life obligations, and we don't have much free time to read 12 books, could we maybe read 6?? - not thin ones mind you - these were all 300+ pages-  he said "not my problem. Figure it out or drop the class. I teach the same class to my day students at 8am, they all manage to do the work. I'm sure you can too." I'm running into the same problem with 2 of my other classes this semester as well. One professors has things due every three days while that is fine, there are only certain days I have a chance to study and actually do the work. When I mentioned that I work full time have a family and other obligations and have certain periods during the week that allow me time to study, I got "well don't wait until last minute. You need to manage your time better. My day students manage. I'm sure you can too." and  "just because this is an online class, doesn't mean it's at your own pace. I don't get where you and so many other students think you can learn whenever it's convenient for you. This is life. If you don't like quit."

I realize I am just venting and probably making excuses but I have a brief experience with online continuing education through a larger university. Not one of those ones you see on tv, it was through one of the the university of Massachusetts campuses. Their program was tailored for adult students, and yes there were deadlines but there was flexibility to move at a pace that worked for you as long as your work was in by the deadline.  It was hard work and I didn't mind. I only withdrew from their because that was a horrible period of my life called "the spiral of confusion" But with these classes I have now, having work due every three days and in by 3:00 in the afternoon is just not realistic. I've actually spoken with a number of adult students as well that are running into the same problem - so it's not just these classes it's the program in general. One woman is a director of some local women's home, she back at school trying to earn her bachelors and was asked to be on a committee to offer perspective on the adult learning program. She graciously accepted thinking it would be a great opportunity Well it turns out every meeting for that is held in the early morning while she was at work. When she mentioned, to them if they wanted perspectives of the students that went at night it would probably be a good idea not to hold meeting in the early evening because most people who attend at night already have a full schedule and are already making accommodations to fit school in, she was shot down and told that it wasn't a realistic option since most of the committee members only taught during the day..she was baffled. 

Quitting I am not, and I think I manage my time pretty well, professor meany. Lol. but I'm seriously considering transferring back to a university that understands that adult learners are differnt than traditional students. I chose the school I'm going to now because I thought actual classes on campus was what I wanted but Im accepting that I learn better by hands on and doing my own research, rather than sitting in a classroom so online learning I think is best for me too. The school I went to before offered classes on campus as well, but it is over an hour away.  I am long out of my spiral of confusion and know what I want to major in. I just need to find a school that is a good fit.

In the meantime I just need to keep reminding myself I can't do everything....

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Saturday, February 7, 2015

Can I get another coffee over here? Please?

At this point I will take it prepared any way. Don't care :)   I just need it to stay awake. That is it. Even then sometimes it doesn't work and makes me more tired.

I don't know what I was thinking taking classes full time. Well yeah I actually do - I just want to get my degree done and over with. I love learning actually but I Am not fond of school. But I know a degree is necessary nowadays so I'm going to stick it through. I've had a few moments where I've gotten completely overwhelemed school wise. Even miss a few assignments due to pure exhaustion and falling asleep at my computer desk at home. Lol. 

(That is my desk when I'm trying to learn financial accounting)

I've even thought about dropping my hard class but decided against it because 1) it would be a hassle because I missed the deadline 2) I need to realize that I am not perfect at everything, can't be good at everything, and never will be good at everything. 

I thought I'd have more time for my blog since the purchase of my iPhone. Hahaha! I miss my blog and I miss writing and sharing recipes, rambling and such but I don't have time to update it constantly and consistently. One day I will though :). In the meantime I will get to it when I get to it - given enough coffee to stay awake that is. 

Have a great weekend! See you the next time!

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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Snowed In

So I am snowed in! I don't know the exact totals but it had to be a little over 2 feet - and it's still coming down. 

We knew about the snow before hand so schools were cancelled, work closed, businesses closed for today - pretty much the state shut down so I spent the day home.

I got my first taste of working at home today too. I will say though I LOVE going in to work and don't think I would enjoy working from home frequently. That may have to do with a talkative child who wanted to know everything I was doing. Despite that I actually got a lot done and was able to put a little more time into a few things that I don't normally get to do. So it was good :) tomorrow is still up in the air so I'm just going to have to play it by ear.

School is going well. I'm ready to pull my hair out with Accounting though...I just really do not understand it...the end result will be worth it. That's what I have to keep telling myself.

Other than that that's all I've got today!

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Index Card Note Taking

Hey there! So what's going on? Too much? Just have been busy busy busy. School is now in full swing and more things are going on at work - it's just getting more involved and more exciting. Is that strange to get excited about work???  I'm finally settling into somewhat of a routine and just trying to take things one step at a time without getting too overwhelmed.

Then other night though told a different story - Exhausted of course, I still had homework to do, so I sat on the floor, with all my books open and just became super overwhelmed. I was tired so I didn't want to be sitting there reading material and studying notes. Not even that, I was struggling with finding a way to study & take notes that worked for me because doing things the "traditional" way was not working. Nothing was sticking and I was getting more confused.

I don't like admitting this but I never really knew how to study/learn/motivate myself etc. I was talking with my sister the other day and this was one of our conversation topics. Growing up education/academics weren't made to be important. Our parents never pushed us, like some of our friends parents had, so we kind of just got by doing the minimum. She and I went through different, but similar struggles so it was a relief to know that I wasn't the only sibling that struggled with this. Eventually she found a way that worked for her and advised me to do the same.

I couldn't sleep that night because I was debating internally on how I was going to do it all, how crazy I am for taking on all this stuff at once, what I was thinking. I was thinking about dropping out completely, or changing my major to something that didn't feel so involved. My thinking continued all day,  but the end of the day I came to a rational decision. I decided that it's okay to get overwhelmed and that even though I am overwhelmed I am actually happier and feel more fulfilled than I have ever felt in a long time. I decided that it's going to be rough, but eventually it will end and it will all be worth it. With the "New Vanessa" theme going on, I did not want to repeat the cycle I had gone through previously.

I did decide though, that I needed to come up with a way of studying that worked for me so I didn't feel like I was spending my entire life attached to a textbook. And I got rid of the mindset that I NEEDED to get A's. As long as I try my best and put the effort in, I will be happy with any grade. If I get A's - GREAT! If I don't - that is okay too. As long as I learn something in the end.

I was staring at my notes at work and wondered why I didn't take class the same way I took notes at work.  At work my notes are all over the place. Seriously, no one would be able to understand them but me. It's a total mess - BUT it works.  I don't use the lines, I write all over the place, create bubbles and charts and have lots of arrows connecting one thing to the next. I even doodle.... I also have little sub notebooks/sticky notes for things I need to remember but in there they are written in more detail with arrows, bubbles and asterisk. And I remember. It's a system that works for me. I like disorganized organization if that makes sense. I'm a visual person and learner so I'm assuming that is why this crazy system works.

(This is nothing compared to my work notes)

Now my school work: everything is organized neatly in three ring binders I write neatly within the lines- there is no sign of disorganization, no circles, no scribbles and no arrows connecting one thought to the next. It doesn't work. I don't remember anything I get lost, and end up getting incredibly frustrated. So I decided to take the approach I use at work. And it seems to be working really well. I don't know why I never applied this to school but I'm sure it had to do just "trying to do the normal thing" or "what everyone else was doing"

Rather than using 3 ring binders I just am using a cheap spiral notebook to write vocabulary words and important information when I am skimming the text (I also learned I don't need to read the entire text. Just the chapter recap and  just read the sections or Google the things I need more explanation on). Then rather than sub notebooks I transfer all the "mess" onto index cards so I can study each topic or important subject.

So there it is. That's what I'm gonna do. :-) On to the next thing to learn. 

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