Monday, January 31, 2011

2011--The Year of Finishing

And no, I don't mean this year will be all about races, faux painting my walls, or getting new flooring.

This year I've decided that it will be the year that I finish all (or most) of the unfinished things/projects I have in my life. A long time ago I told you about how I always make a list every summer of things I'll try to finish, but I never end up completing anything (or very few). Well, as I started thinking about all the things on those lists and what my new year's resolutions should be, I decided that I should combine them because clearly, I have a problem.

My problem is I get really excited about something, or I decide to try something, and I have to do it right then. But, if it ends up taking too long or I lose interest, I tend to put it away or stop, thinking I'll pick it up later when I have more time. But of course, I never seem to have enough time, other things get in the way, there are more important things to do, I forget about it, etc. I have a pile of books that I've started and haven't finished, arts and craft projects that are half complete, and various other things that I've been meaning to get to but haven't started.

So in an attempt to make myself a better person, and one that finishes what she started, I've decided that I'll make a master list of the things I've been meaning to finish, and I want to get a majority of them completed by the end of the year. Some of them I HAVE to finish, others  I'd like to finish, but I won't be too upset if I don't get to them. After all, I've got a lot of projects on this list (and if you'll notice, a few of the projects will seem familiar, since I've had them on other lists. See, I really am terrible at this).

And because I'm a big believer in making yourself accountable for your goals, I'm sharing these projects I need to finish with you, my blogger friends. Hopefully, you can bug me about getting them done, and as I complete and mark things off my list, I'll let you know. Well, here they are:


  • The 3 books I had agreed to edit for a few family friends and my grandfather. Why does this have to be done? Well... I'll be honest, all 3 authors are fairly old, and I want to get their manuscripts back to them before something terrible happens, if you know what I mean.
  • The Christmas stockings for my parents that I started in high school. It has been ridiculous how long it has been since I started these and have yet to finish. My parents ask me every year, and they've had the same stockings since they first got married. The waiting has got to end, and I have to finish them. By Christmas.
  • Finish writing one of the novels I've started. I have started about 3 novels, with ideas for a few more, and I have yet to actually sit down and finish writing them. Some require some research, which is why I've stopped, but the one I'm hoping to finish (I started it when I was a junior at BYU) is the furthest along and doesn't require any research (at least not yet).
  • My BYU graduation album/scrapbook. I have the pictures, so it's not like they are going to go anywhere, I'd just like to finish the scrapbook so I can put all the scrapbook crap away in a box.
  • The various books I've yet to finish. Again, I'm pretty good at remembering where I've left off on a book even if it's been awhile, but I'd like to be able to put away this pile of books by my nightstand. (I'm hoping and will help me in this endeavor.) Also, I'm pretty sure my little sister would like me to finish the one I've borrowed from her (An Abundance of Katherines by John Green). She keeps bugging me about where I am in the book, and every time I tell her I'm in the same place since the last time she asked me, she gives me this exacerbated sigh and walks away.
  • My New York collage/poster. I had this bright idea to make a collage poster of all the bags and postcards I got while on my trip to New York City last year. I should probably actually do that since they are all sitting in a bag in my room.
  • Print out/make a book out of my blog. I like to use my blog as a journal, if you couldn't tell, and a while back when I abandoned my Xanga (yes, I'll admit, I totally had a Xanga that I updated fairly regularly), I made a word document of every Xanga post I had with the plan that I'd print it out and bind it so it'd be my journal for future generations to read and admire (read: mock and criticize). My friend Mary did this with her Xanga posts awhile back and I thought that was a good idea. Again, the word document ain't going no where (I have it saved in like 3 different places), but I'd like to actually print it out and finish it. This one should be fairly easy for me to accomplish this year. Yay!
I could probably come up with a few more if I think about it some more, but I feel like this is a pretty good list that I can actually accomplish this year. Let's hope I can do it. I don't want to go another year with my parent's stockings looking like this: 

Dad's stocking: I realize it's hard to tell, but only the red and green and Santa's skin are done.
My mom's stocking: Haven't even started.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Life has been crazy

I have been behind on a lot of things, blog reading, blog posting, school reading, etc. You know how when people get so much stimuli they just shut down? This month has brought so many changes in my life that I pretty much don't know what to do, so I watch TV or do something very unproductive because I don't actually want to do what I should be doing. I'm starting to get over it, but I just wanted to give a report on said changes, you know in case anyone was curious.

I got a new calling at church. I am now the Relief Society secretary. I'm excited and kind of overwhelmed since the previous secretary was pretty non-existant, so I'm having to basically start from scratch with everything and reorganize everything. I'm hoping things will calm down more and it won't be so much work once I get everything squared away. Let's hope I'm right.

I started my second semester of grad school. I'm still only taking two classes, but they are both going to be very intense, and I might die from the workload. One of them is Digital Textuality, which in all honesty, I'm still not sure what that even means and I'm on my 3rd week of class. It's one of those "we'll figure it out as we go along and decide as a class what we want the requirements to be" kinds of classes, and if you know me but at all you know that I DO NOT do well with those types of things. My other class is about media and democracy/government, and our professor basically told us that we'd spend half of the semester talking about Wikileaks. Again, if you know me but at all, you know I don't like talking about politics and government stuff because, well because it just does not interest me. Also, the workload for this class is a TON of reading, and the professor is one of those that if no one says anything 2 seconds after he asks a question he just calls on someone and puts them on the spot. Ugh. Lord, help me survive this semester. After this I'll just have 3 more to go. YAY!

Today they "restructured" my department at work. Because of the rumor mill, I kind of already knew it was coming and had a pretty good guess about what'd go down. But even despite knowing how it'd probably end up, it still was kind of a shock when it actually happened. It doesn't affect me too much except for the fact that I now have a new boss. We'll see how things go, but it doesn't make me any more excited or happy, I'll tell you that. I'm trying to have a positive outlook on it all (something I'm trying to work on and make a habit as one of my resolutions), but sometimes that is really tough to do.

I'm also starting to contemplate, well more than contemplate, moving out of my parent's house and into an apartment. It probably won't happen until August, but I have to start saving up money and go through things to keep, throw away, or store. I've lived with my parents for 3 and a half years now, and it's definitely time to skedaddle. But, in that 3 and half years, I've collected a lot of crap (not to mention the crap I had brought with me from school). So now I got to go through all of it. I was always planning on moving once I graduated, so I'm just moving out 6 months or so earlier.

Speaking of graduating, I should be graduating by May of 2012, if all goes according to plan (which it sure as heck better especially because of that restructuring I told you about), which means I have to start looking into what I can do with that degree and where I'd like to work/move to etc. Granted this is still aways away, but it's just one more thing I've been thinking about recently.

With all of that said, life has been crazy. Although, I'm not sure I'd like it boring, so I guess crazy is better than that. I might not have much of a social life or blog life this semester (although my school blog will have 2 posts from me every week!), but I will try my best. I hope everyone else is doing great and embracing the new year with excitement. Me? I'm already wanting it to be 2012.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

My Dichotomous First Semester

As I'm soon about to start my second semester of grad school next week, I thought I would report on how my first semester went. Let's just say I loved it and hated it. I took two classes, and one of them I absolutely despised and the other I absolutely adored.

The first class was my aesthetics of interactive art class. I know I've already told you a little about this class, but basically, by the end of the semester I was counting down the days till it was over. The teacher was unclear on what she actually wanted when it came to assignments, I only got to know a few students that seemed relatively nice and normal and the other ones either didn't talk, or if they did I didn't want to hear about them. The intellectual hipster dude really pissed me off at the end of the semester with his final presentation, and I was so glad to be done with that class. I wouldn't say that it was a hard class because it wasn't actually. It was fairly easy. Just some reading assignments, a few presentations to do and that was it. But, being in class was agonizing and a huge waste (most of the time I played angry birds on my phone or did reading for my other class). I really didn't learn much from the class, and what I did learn it was from the reading and research I did for the presentations. I came home after that class every time complaining about how I'd want it over already. I like school, but I have never hated a class so much in my life like I did this one. All I can say now is, I'm glad it's over, I'm never taking a class from that professor again (and luckily I don't have to since it was an elective class outside of my program); and if that hipster dude is in another of my classes (which I'm praying he's not), I'm slapping him. No, really, I mean it.

Then there's my other class. I absolutely LOVED it. It was the intro into my program (so that's a good sign that I liked it so much), and my professor was awesome. She was new to the University, but she did an amazing job and I learned so much in class and outside of class. There were a few classmates that bugged me, but I made so many other friends with everyone else that it was easy for me to ignore the few annoying ones. Have you ever sat in a class or been somewhere and you just felt that that was exactly where you needed to be? That's how I felt sitting in that class. After taking that class, I realized that even though I might not know what kind of job this degree will get me or where it will take me in my life, it was something I was supposed to be doing and that if I was dedicated enough to it, it would get worked out in the end.

Let's hope that this next semester is less of the former and more of the latter.