Sunday, February 25, 2007


Apparently I now only write once a month. But this is good because I have nothing new to say. School continues to consume my life. My assignments are not incredibly difficult but time consuming. I am starting my research for my competency paper, basically a needs assessment for domestic violence services in Western Crawford County. The women's shelter event has gotten completely ridiculous. Since I am trying to coordinate 3 social work groups, including undergrad and grad students, it has become ridiculous. No one can meet at the same time and the undergrad president isn't willing to do "email meetings". And she told me if our president gives her attitude one more time, she's going to knock her out. There is more to that story but it's not really worth telling. I am sure this girl has a stellar future in social work. The major insanity is that we found out we have to take our clinical licensing exam by May 7th. After that the rules change, blah blah, the point is we have to take it and pass it. Now I will not presume to say that this 4 hour exam is the most difficult licensing exam ever...BUT...honestly I know there is a good chance I will not pass it. I went to a prep class this Saturday and most of the material I have not heard of since undergrad and some I have never even heard of. I have to say all of us are pretty pissed that we covered virtually zero of this material in grad school. Not kidding. I think if I could have a month to just study I would be fine but with everything else going on it's going to be 50/50. Why couldn't the cutoff be in June?
In other news, Ava started a new preschool..a "learn through play" school with all the fancy accrediations, etc. We were so excited about it but now we are unsure. The curriculum is great and the teachers are great. Staff turnover is low but they don't do NAPS. I think it may be too much for her. They have nothing but positive reports about her behavior but when we get her home she is so over tired it is ridiculous. We just realized that the majority of the kids go half days only and spend the rest of the time at home. We feel a bit like outcasts because I am not a stay at home Mom and Steven is not a doctor. We'll see.
In fun news, we went to State College last weekend for a roommate reunion. It was way fun. So funny how you can pick up right where you left off. Ava had to come with us because my parents battling horrible weather, etc. Anyway when we walked into the "fabulous" Ramada Inn she said in an amazed voice "Mommy this is such a beautiful room. I love it!" Believe me it was no more than average, I think she was into the Bermuda bedspreads.
That's it people, nothing exciting. Talk to you in March.

Monday, January 22, 2007

School is slow going. This is my second week of classes and I feel like I have been at it forever. Two of my classes seem like they might be interesting and worthwhile this semester so that is exciting. The year has started off fairly well. I have decided to have a positive outlook and stress as little as possible. No more freak outs...or at least keeping the freak outs to a minimum. Steven actually sat me down and gave me a pep talk last week. I must be a real nut when school is in session.
Anyway, Steven has also started his crazy class for his crazy 8 hour engineer exam. And Ava has started tumbling class. It is really cute and she loves it. Who knew you could get so excited about the crab walk and frog pops?
Our community service project for the the Graduate Social Work Association (I'm VP) is to solicit donations from local businesses and private citizens for The Greenhouse, which is the Meadville women's shelter. I am pretty excited about the project eventhough it will entail more work than last semster's kettle ringing and angel tree. Since my thesis is on rural domestic violence, I have more insight into the people we will be helping which makes me want to work harder. I don't hold out any unrealistic hopes about what we will get donated because in this small town as in many small towns gender based abuse is not always considered a problem. My supervisor at United Way is actually told she is not allowed to discuss women's services when she does presentations at some of the local factories. Crazy. Anyway, let's hope we have some good luck with this project.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A New Year

Yeah! A new year! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all of you out there. We had a good holiday with limited excitement. Ava enjoyed all of her presents this year and was a bit of a maniac. It was really cool though. My cousin dressed up as Santa on Christmas day at my Grandmother's house. Ava and her cousin Angelina went wild. We did nothing exciting for New Year's because Steven was sick. We had a movie night with the most random movies: Scoop, Invincible, My Super Ex-Girlfriend and The Black Dahlia. Dahlia was my fave, Scoop and Invicible were entertaining but not great and Super Ex-Girlfriend was horrible (although we expected it to be horrible).

Plans for the New Year are basically to drive ourselves to the edge with added stress, work and least for the semester. This last semester should be insane and my thesis may kill me. On top of the usual insanity, Steven has decided to take the EIT exam which he really should have taken as soon as he graduated. Anyway he is now taking a refresher cousre every Friday after work in Erie until he takes the exam in May. Therefore, leaving only Monday an d Wednesday evenings open for child free study time and everything else we have to do. It should be interesting. I keep telling myself that it is less that 5 months of our lives and it helps keeps things in perspective.

In other news when I checked my grades (all As and a B+), I realized that my fuck face, sexual harassing, mental case professor from last year had changed my grade from an A to a B for last semester. Now in the grand scheme of things a B or A will not really matter in my life. It is just the principle. I got As on all the exams and only missed the class once. Plus are you allowed to give someone an A and then change your mind? I mean he didn't just tell me I got an A, I looked it up on the "official" site. So do I waste time and energy pursuing this or just let it go? My friend Amy's grade was also changed from a B to a C. And honestly she didn't deserve a B in the first place. I think this school has been one of the worst decisions of my life. It has caused me so much stress I can't take it.

Monday, November 27, 2006

The Aftermath

So Thanksgiving went OK. The food turned out really well especially the baked pineapple and cream cheesy pumpkin pie. Steven and I went to Wal Mart @ 3AM to stand in the toy line. It was actually fun. People were crazy and ridiculous but most of them were nice. We had a good time and got Ava a VSmile, Thomas Tank Train Set and a Cabbage Patch doll. She is quite spoiled this year. Between Xmas and her birthday she is getting so much stuff. Plus she is having her big party. We also put up our Christmas tree, outside lights and other decorations. We are truly festive this year and Ava is just amazed by it all.

In other news, school sucks. I just have no motivation this year. Part of my problem is that there are 50 million group projects. I hate group projects especially when you cannot pick your group. For example, in one group two of the members cannot write well at all. I am not a perfect writer but I know when to combine a sentence and not to use "also" SEVEN times in one paragraph. Do I tell these people what I really think or do I just say it looks good and take a poor grade? I will probably do the latter because I hate to hurt people's feelings and I don't want any extra stress. I really hope this master's degree is worth all this time and effort.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Yeah Thanksgiving! My husband and I love Thanksgiving because we have claimed it as our holiday...meaning we stay home and cook. Anyone who wants to see us has to come to dinner. We spend so much time driving on the holidays to visit family. It stresses us out and makes our time off seem so much shorter. This year we are having turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, homemade rolls, baked pineapple, brown sugar carrots, baby sweet corn, mixed salad with apple dressing and creamcheese pumpkin pie. It is a bit of an undertaking but I am excited. Steven's Mom and Cousin Jane will be coming which which should be interesting.
Happy Thanksgiving to Everyone! Eat until your pants pop open!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Happy Feet and Sesame Street

Last night was the Happy Feet pre-premiere charity event for The United Way. I was unable to attend because I had class but of course I made Steven go. Ava actually did OK and didn't get fidgety until half way through. This is a miracle for her. Steven came home a bit emotional. Alot of the kids attending did not buy their own tickets and were sponsored by businesses, etc. He was upset about the state of many of the children and families that attended. He reported some as being a bit dirty and smelly while others just didn't have clothes that fit them, etc. I think it is easy to forget that there is poverty in our country. I think it is alot harder for some people to admit that poverty even exists and often people want to blame the poverty stricken for their situations. I can attest that for most people, at least the one's that I have worked with, it is rarely their fault. They are out there and they are often invisible to us. The gap between the "have"" and the have nots" is getting bigger and buying a toy off the angel tree at WalMart may make you feel good but it is not enough. When is this country going to take this seriously?

In lighter news, Ava's 3rd birthday is approaching. We are having a Sesame Street kid party for her. I have invited 7 kids from her daycare. I must say I am a bit terrified of the whole thing. Strange children and parents...and I am in charge of the fun. We have hired a clown for the entertainment, then cake, the pinata and presents. I think it is a good schedule and the party is only for 2 hours. It should be fun. I am hoping for no puking, peeing, pooping or bleeding.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Board of Directors Baffoons?

OK so this year I am realizing the crazy baffoons that serve on nonprofit boards are nonproductive. For example, I was asked to attend Ava's daycare's board meeting to talk about grant writing opportunities for them and also to review grants they write and give suggestions. It was eye opening, sad and a waste of my time. I kept wanting to scream NO! What are you thinking? They spent 47 minutes deciding who would be employee of the month and get a $20 gift card to WalMart. No discussion on fundraising, program development or staff training. Not to mention their board consisted of 5 members. Ok so there is an example of an informal amateur board. The board members for the United Way I intern at are crappy in a different way. Alright they are not completely crappy, most of them have their heart in the right place. But they are so full of themselves and their connecctions/status in the community, it is really sickening. To be fair, there have been boards I have sat in on and they have been productive and positive. I hate being reminded of how jack asses there are in this world. Soon I will be governed by jack asses in every aspect of my life. Sometimes I think I am meant to fly solo. I get so annoyed so easily and maybe I have control issues. Maybe I would be better off living in Montana living off the land and selling my knick knacks for spending money.