Wednesday, March 30, 2011

just what i needed to read

Earlier tonight I was feeling rather grumpy and grouchy, mostly because we have been invited to a kid's event, and thus far, the save-the-date and invitations alone have likely surpassed in budget what our entire wedding cost. Now, normally things such as this don't get to me (I was quite proud that my wedding cost about a 5th of what most weddings cost), but I think I mostly felt embarrassed that they had been to our wedding, and wondered what they could possibly have thought?! There was nothing particularly fancy, and while I had a wonderful, wonderful night with friends and family, I was questioning our decision to have such a low-key, low-cost event.

And then, in my nightly quest for reading all about other people's lives on blogger, I found this passage by C. Jane:
"If our weddings are the best day then what is there to look forward to?
The more you are married, the more you love your spouse (hopefully) so your wedding should actually be the LEAST best day of your life. It is a wonderful day because you make serious covenants with your spouse and the Lord and that is just the beginning right?
To expect the culminating experience of your relationship on your wedding day is a very nonsensical thing anyway. Or anything for that matter. What if you never do marry? Never have children? (And if you do have children, is the birth of child number 1 better than child number 2?) Never have the house with the wrap around porch?
So, I guess I am sad at weddings because I think, they should be quiet things. Small beginnings.
Maybe starting with a bang isn't always the best idea.
I'd rather celebrate in twenty years when they survive their first home remodeling.
Or in thirty-five years when they are empty nesters.
Or in one month when they survive their first marital spat.
Or the morning, when they roll over, and look at their sleeping spouse, and realize how very lucky they are.
Those are the best days of all."

And I remembered. That my wedding was only one day with the person I love, and far from the best one ever. (Though it certainly made my top ten!) And we didn't have to spend the celebration worried about money. We both felt strongly about not starting our "official" life together by going into unnecessary debt.

More than that, the day of our wedding, I was struck by how many people helped us and supported us. My family acted in a civil manner, people seemed happy that we were getting married, and our friends rallied with us in the biggest way possible. Looking back, I feel blessed that we got a chance to spend so much time with the people we love (and who love us) both before and at the wedding. 

So no. I will not feel badly about how much money we (didn't) spend on our wedding. We had a wonderful night, and we able to enjoy the thing that mattered the most... having friends and family celebrate our love with us. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

half marathons

So I'm looking for (a) half marathon (or two) to sign up for. We're currently signed up for a quarter marathon at the end of May (6.6 mi), but I want to have the next race set up so that we don't lose momentum.

Here are my current thoughts:
-the Old Man River in New Orleans in December
-the Golden Leaf in Aspen in September (maybe as a one-year anniversary celebration?)
-the American Discovery Trail in Colorado Springs in early September (obviously wouldn't do this and the Golden Leaf in the same year)
-the Heels and Hills and Him in Irving (Texas) in September (okay, maybe I got stuck on September haha)

Since they're all half marathons, I'll take a look at the registration costs...

It would also help to know where we're living at that point! :)

making friends...?

Just one more night of sleeping by my lonesome...

J's been gone since Tuesday morning, and I've had a hard time sleeping (again). What gives?! (Why yes, I did mean to sound like an 80's sitcom.)

I think I just get nervous because we live in a weird neighborhood. There's a creepy guy who once walked up to me after I parked the car and told me he could see into our apartment. Not to mention that we live around the corner of a soup kitchen, and there are quite a few regulars who hang out around here. Normally, it's not a big deal, but when J's gone, I always a little more on edge and extra aware of my surroundings.

[Justine, I don't know how you live in Chicago. I don't think I could handle myself there. You're brave and I admire that!]

Speaking of strange-ish neighborhoods... I've been thinking a lot lately about the kind of city and neighborhood I want to move to next. When J and I visited San Antonio, Austin, and Dallas, I honestly loved San Antonio and Dallas (Austin was too much of a college town), but I felt like I couldn't quite go live in either yet. They both seem like great places to settle down in once you have kids. Since that's not in the cards for another couple of years, I don't really want to stick myself in a place where people have very different priorities. Which, come to think of it, may be why I want to move out of Madison.

Madison is a great town. If I live anywhere in the Midwest, it'll be Madison. But, in my mind, it has always been a) J's town, and b) a college town. Since J started school here a year before I graduated high school, I first experienced it through him, and therefore saw a lot of it through his eyes only. And sad as it sounds, I don't think I ever got away from that. It was always his party that I crashed... I never made it my own. And I think I'm finally able to admit that I want more. I want a place that we're both new to, so we can make our own memories, and experience it individually.

As for the college town aspect... I don't really want to live downtown forever, since it's overrun with college kids most of the year. Yet I really don't want to live in the suburbs. (That would really make me feel old!)
I don't know... it seems like we're in limbo, and there's not really a good way of going about the search for something new. All sorts of reports come out each year about the best places for singles, or the best places for families. What about the pre-kids, post-marriage crowd? I want to live in a place where no-one's badgering us about when we're gonna have kids, but don't avoid us because we're a married couple. We like to have fun!!

Maybe I'm looking at this wrong. Maybe there's such a crowd in any city... we just have to find them. But how? Post an ad on craigslist? "Fun couple looking to double-date"?! That invokes images of a forty-something couple looking to play bridge. Ha! Maybe I should stay away from craigslist for the time being...

Also not helping this: I'm socially awkward. I have a hard time putting myself out there. (Once I'm your friend, I'm there for you, thick and thin... but the starting process is not my strength.) How do people make friends when they're not in school? Work would make sense... except for the fact that I work with kids. Don't think that double-date's gonna come from here. Where else? Surely work and school are not the only places to meet people...


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

things that annoy me

Things that annoy me:

-women who refer to themselves as "mommy to ___"... especially if that is the first thing they identify themselves as. I completely understand that motherhood is a lifechanging experience, but I think the reason so many parents end up unhappy with parenting is because they forget that they (as individuals and as a couple) mattered before they gave birth. It's great that you want to give your child a good life, but it shouldn't come at the expense of your entire identity.

-the sanctimonious attitude that sometimes accompanies a woman's decision to have a natural or home birth. I think what makes it great to be a woman today is that we have choices, meaning that one woman's decision to have an epidural is just as valid as another's to avoid any medication. (For the record, I have never given birth, and my current desire for an epidural may change.) BUT, I think we should respect one another's ability to make the best decisions for ourselves and individual children. What works for one woman doesn't necessarily work for another... and to pretend otherwise is foolish.

(which leads me to another point)
-the "mommy wars" (refering to the real or imagined rift between mothers who work and mothers who stay at home) may be the reason women today are still not taken as seriously as they claim they should be. Simply put, it would be naive to imagine that someday all women would stand together on any issue, but to pit ourselves against one another won't do anyone a bit of good. If you want to go to work after having children, by all means-- I myself can imagine that I would go nuts being at home with kids all day, and would require some time away from them. (I am currently a nanny who works with two families for <20 hours a week. I love the kids I work with, but I come home exhausted.) If you want to stay home, have at it. (I envy your patience.)

My mom stayed home with my sisters and I until I was in high school, and I personally don't think she was fulfilled by it-- I think it simply made more financial sense. She didn't have a college degree at the time, and finding work in the U.S. after coming here in 1998 would not likely have produced a great income, whereas childcare for three kids can get expensive very quickly.
However, there are plenty of women who love being home with their kids, and cannot imagine leaving them with someone else for 5-9 hours a day.

What I don't understand (and therefore it annoys me) is when women act as though another woman's decision to stay at home or go to work somehow affects what is available to the first group. If another woman wants to stay home and you want to go to work (or vice versa), why does it matter to you what someone else is doing? Another woman's ability or desire to do one over the other doesn't affect your ability to make that decision for yourself. What does influence your ability to do one or the other is often finances... which requires you to work out this decision with your partner (or whoever is helping you raise your child), not focus on what other women are doing.

-my last grievance is related to all of the above... the "mommy drive-by". Why are we spending so much time and energy cutting down the decisions of parents (particularly moms) around us? Have we really lost the ability to do anything constructive? My theory is this: since parents (specifically moms) spend so much more of their time and energy on their kids today, they want to make sure it's worth it. And since that won't be seen until said kids graduate college (or get married, or have kids, or whatever), the most they can do right now is to compare themselves with the parents around them. And since nothing makes you feel more superior (or at least less crappy about the job you're doing as a mom) as finding someone who is doing a worse job, we spend all of our free time and energy focusing on those who make us feel like we're not complete muckups as parents.

The solution? Love your kids, but don't let them be your world. If you're working on something other than parenting, you'll have a lot more to be proud of... and you'll feel less pressure to be the perfect parent.

and breathe...

Today hasn't been the best. After a week away from school, it was tough to get back into the swing of things. I got my critical theory exam back, and I got a C on it. :(

Worse than that, I don't even think I deserved a C... the professor read out some answers that deserve A's, and mine wasn't even close. As far as I'm concerned, I deserved the F I thought I was going to get.

To top that off, I still have no idea what the professor wants when he asks questions in class. I always feel dumb when I try to answer and he swats away my answers. Bah!

Ok. Regroup. 

J talked it through with me, and I have a better idea of how to study for the next exam. So, I will try to a) read through the assignments and get a better idea of what's going on before class, and b) try to map the ideas out on some poster-board, so that I can have a clearer idea of how things interconnect. 

On a more positive note, I am grateful that I have a husband who would do anything to work through things with me, even if he doesn't understand what's going on. I'm also grateful that I have the capacity to see that my current methods are not working for me, and the drive to try and find something better. 

Highlights of today:
-I went grocery shopping and bought lots of fresh things! Spinach, asparagus, avocado, mango, romaine, green onions, cauliflower, mushrooms, greek yogurt, feta, and dry beans. (They are much cheaper than canned, but I've never used them before, so we'll see how it goes.) And the trip was relatively cheap. :) [Woodman's is noticeably less expensive than Copp's.]
-It's been raining on and off all day... and I just heard thunder. Perfect weather for a Friday Night Lights marathon and a glass of red wine.
-I bought some salt and vinegar chips. AND I DIDN'T EAT THE WHOLE BAG. :)
-I made roasted asparagus tonight... it was easier to make and better tasting than I expected. 
-I bought "Everything" bagel-thins. Loving the bagel- and sandwich-thins.
-I started the day with a mushroom, spinach and feta omelette... perfect!

Now, I have to get my butt in gear with this paper. Despite my reservations, I do want to graduate this May.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

setting goals more mindfully

After a weekend of fun, it's time to get back to working and school. While reading through some news articles, I found an article detailing nine things that successful people do differently than unsuccessful people. I won't address each thing, but the following stood out to me:

-Focus On Getting Better Rather Than Being Good: This stuck out to me because it echoed what I had in mind when starting this blog. For so long, I've tried holding myself to impossible standards (working out every day, eating healthy foods all the time), which invariably ended up in frustration and feeling like a failure. Thus, I wanted to change my mindset... instead of focusing on never doing something wrong again, I'm focusing on doing a little bit better each time. And this works for me! For instance, when I go out to eat, I don't force myself to only look at the "healthy" options, since I know that will make me feel like I'm depriving myself. Instead, I focus on making some part of my meal healthier. (Thus, a cheeseburger with a side of fresh veggies, or half a wrap with a salad.) Slowly but surely, I'm eating better, and I'm not worried about "falling off the wagon" because I'm not focused on avoiding everything that's not strictly "healthy." 

[Side-note: something that has really helped change how I eat out is something I read on Julie's blog-- Julie often splits an entree with her husband, in favor of then also splitting some appetizers and/or dessert. Over the weekend, J and I split a couple different meals, and were both surprised to find that when we do this, we eat a lot less (and don't end up leaving the restaurant feeling so stuffed) and we get to try all sorts of cool things together! At one restaurant, we shared bruschetta, caprese salad and french onion soup, and at another, we had green beans, peanut noodles, potstickers, and salmon rolls-- all appetizers-- and left feeling happily satisfied!]

Back to the article! 
-Focus On What You Will Do, Not What You Won't Do... this goes hand in hand with the idea of focusing on doing better. I have often prevented progress by focusing solely on what I can't do. If I "banned" cheese, I seemed to only be able to think about all the cheese I couldn't have. If I told myself that I shouldn't spend any money, I would feel a compulsive need to go buy things... and find a way to "justify" every penny. However, when my goals have been to include something, like eating more vegetables, drinking more water, or reading more, I have found it to be much easier to stick to what I want to do. 
(And yes, I realize that my earlier post about cutting TV contradicts this notion... I have been trying to focus on including things that I want to do instead of watching TV. Like reading. And running. And catching up with some friends.)

Long story short: My goals become attainable when a) they are positive (inclusive) rather than negative, and b) when the focus is on doing better, not doing anything perfectly. 

this week I want to eat more vegetables, drink more water, and get more exercise. :)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

new watch... coming soon!

I just ordered a new watch online-- J and I have been running with our phones and using the stop watches on there... not too convenient when your screen goes black and your keys lock every 30 seconds! Therefore, I did some research online tonight, and decided to suck it up and buy the Timex (see below) I kept going back to.
And since Timex offers 20% off your order after you register on their website, I got the $25 watch (with shipping) for $24.50... nice!

Bonus: the purple and black watch will match nicely with my new shoes...

Can't wait to put it to good use!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

massages! (friday)

I. am. SO. EXCITED. J and I are getting massages on Friday, down in Chicago. I actually bought a couples massage special through living social, and managed to get various meals for our mini-vaca through groupon. Meaning: less money spent= we can go to Florida for A.F.'s bat mitzvah in May. Perfect!!

Back to the massages-- I'm particularly excited because as I've been doing some running, I've noticed a spot in my lower back that seems to be 'pinched'... (what exactly is getting pinched, I don't know) but it doesn't feel good. But today when I was carrying A up for his nap, I realized that the pinching might have more to do with how I carry the kids. As a rule, I carry them on my left hip, meaning that I bend over to the right a bit. Argh. I'm not sure how to correct this...?! I've tried carrying them on my right, but that just means I bend over to my left, and I don't want to have problems on both sides. J suggested doing some yoga to stretch it out and maybe even build some strength, but I think I'll have to pair it with more running and some weight training to actually make a difference. (That being said, I'm sure yoga will help release some of the pressure building in my lower back.) As for the kids? I guess I'll have to stop carrying them... though it's often a lot easier to carry them than to wait for them to do what I'm asking them to do. Mmmm.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

positivity breeds positivity

I've been reading some interesting blogs lately... particularly by women who detail their eating and exercising. Honestly, it's been inspiring! My favorite has been Julie's blog-- she takes lots of pictures of the food she eats, and I've gotten lots of new ideas for healthier meals. (They'll have to be somewhat modified... I'm not a huge fan of mixing my fruit and cheeses.) She's very upbeat and positive, and she makes it seem easy to maintain a balance between eating well and having treats.
The best find on the blog? These sandwich thins:
J and I went to Sam's last night and bought a 2 pack (with 16 thins), and they're great. :) I like them a lot better than regular bread... especially because they get extra crispy when you toast them. My lunch of tuna salad on sandwich thins was delicious.
Speaking of tuna salad: I made it with fage yogurt and a little bit of chipotle mayo... amazing. Since I don't love regular mayo, this is a huge improvement. :)

In other news, J and I are trying to spend less money on food (hence the Sam's trip). We stocked up on cereal, bread and sandwich thins, deli meat and cheese, some veggies, canned tomatoes, soup, and 10 lbs of onions  ($5!!). J made sure we stuck to our list (I'm terrible at it!), and we spent just over $100. We're gonna try and avoid going shopping for another week and a half, and see how we do. We're stocked up on frozen broccoli and peas, so we should be okay for veggies.

Also, I know I'm about 5 years late with this, but I love Friday Night Lights. I've been watching the first season while working on stuff around the apartment (particularly when I'm doing dishes). I felt like an idiot crying over the sink as they realized that Jason is paralyzed. So sad! (Yet so addictive.)

Monday, March 14, 2011

productive weekend

The weekend was wonderful...
  • J and I went for a run! We followed the first step in the couch to 5k program, and it went well! I know he can run a lot longer (and probably faster) than I can, but he was very patient, and the run was a success. :) We have plans to run on Tuesday before Glee and Thursday before our mini-vacation in Chicago. I also signed us up for a quarter marathon (6.6 miles) at the end of May... it will serve as motivation to keep up with training!
  • We did a lot of talking and planning. We have been running into a problem of spending more than we budget, and we came up with a couple of ideas for how to prevent that in the future. Best of all, the conversation wasn't too stressful! It felt good to be working on something as a team, and even if our new plan doesn't pan out how we want it to, at least we're trying something new.
  • The sun was shining! This never fails to lift my spirits, and I hope this weather holds for the weekend... I want to be able to walk around in Chicago, so hopefully it doesn't suddenly become wintry again.
  • I slept a ton... after sleeping poorly while J was out of town, it was great to get caught up on sleep. This also meant that I was more patient and more positive during our planning-- something that definitely made a huge difference.
I'm looking forward to

  • two nights away, with some celebrating and some relaxation!
  • visiting J's aunt, uncle and cousin... we haven't seen them since the Packers/Bears game, and since they're Bears fans, they weren't too happy!
  • seeing some old friends on Saturday. It's been a while since we've gotten that group together, and it should be a blast.
  • more warm weather so that J and I can finally have our garage sale! This will free up our "library," and help to de-clutter the rest of our apartment. Plus, since there's some nice stuff to sell, I'm sure we can bring in a little bit of money... to save for another vacation down the line. :)

Friday, March 11, 2011

i am grateful

After talking to Jason about trying to plan tonight, and feeling frustrated about various things, I started thinking about everything that I was angry about. I felt myself tense up, and I realized quickly that this was not going to help. So, instead of continuing to focus on that, I decided to make a list of things I'm grateful for. (And I feel better!)

I am grateful...
  • For a wonderful sunny day. For the melting snow.
  • For Jason. He evens me out. (Even though he drives me nuts sometimes.)
  • For the chance to graduate in May.
  • For Josh not caring when papers are late.
  • For Bill not failing me.
  • For Justine, who showed me it’s possible to go for what you want.
  • For Cassie, who reminds me that all things are possible… with the right attitude.
  • For my jobs… for feeling like I should pay the families for the chance to learn from their kids.
  • For stupid Scott Walker, who managed to get a group of apathetic young people to care about politics.
  • For the chance, every morning, to start again.
  • For having the means to decide to be healthy.
  • For my new computer, which allowed me to sit at Starbucks this morning to work on my paper.
  • For having the option to choose: I can choose to eat healthy, to spend less money, to put stuff away, to get some exercise, to be positive instead of negative.
  • That I can read.
  • For the high school and middle school teachers who are teaching their kids to protest when someone is doing something other than what was agreed upon.
  • For having the means and time to go to school. I forget sometimes that it’s a privilege.
  • For living in a place where we can object to political activity. I cannot imagine being persecuted simply because I don’t agree with what the government is doing.
  • For all my blue things. Blue calms me and brings joy to my life. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Pretty tired tonight (went to bed at 5 and got up at 11... weird, I know) and I'm fairly sure that I'm not getting above a C on the exam I took today...

I went to Target, Walmart and Bed, Bath and Beyond tonight, and bought various items to help get this place organized. I found the most darling clear storage containers that have hearts (on one) and stripes (on the other) on them... and yes, I shop in the kids section. :)

I also found a bunch of little toys for the kids for their birthdays (end of April)-- I got little books, some painting supplies, and a keepsake box to decorate with gemstones for A. And best of all, the whole lot cost me maybe 10 bucks! I'm excited to give them their presents!!

I also finally bought some over-the-door coat-hangers... now we can hang up our coats and sweatshirts, plus my bags aren't taking over the room. 

Ooh... I also bought 6 little tin buckets (2 blue, 2 pink, 2 white). They look somewhat like this:

They'll be perfect for all the millions of pens, highlights, pencils, and random change we have laying around. Plus they're adorable. :)

Lastly, I found the cutest tiny tissue-boxes. I bought an extra one for you, Justine! I know how much you love tiny things. 

(Now I just have to find easter eggs that are big enough to fit those tiny bottles.) 

another night without sleep


I have an exam tomorrow. And since it's 25% of the overall grade, I really need to do well. Hence, no sleep tonight. I'm pretty excited to finally (someday) be done with school.

In other (more exciting) news, I bought new running shoes and sports bras tonight. The shoes are dark gray and purple, and I love them. The sports bras were expensive, but I haven't bought any since July 2007 (read: some 70 lbs ago).

WOW. That's really embarrassing. And sad. I looked at pictures of me at L's wedding in 2007, and it makes me really sad/angry that I a) thought I was really fat then and b) let myself get to here.


Okay. I cannot go back and change it, I can only change where I go from here.


Ready? Set? GO!

Start slowwwwwly.
I'm going to use this program to get started. I will start next week at the SERF-- everyone will be gone for spring break, and it will be less embarrassing to be huffing and puffing in an empty room.

For this week, I will focus on my classes and getting my papers done, as well as cleaning up this apartment. There is definitely too much stuff everywhere.

(And yes, I do know that I need to sleep better if I ever want to lose weight. I have read the studies and I get it. Sometimes, life just gets in the way. I can't imagine someday trying to balance all this with a full-time job and kids. But more on that later...)

Monday, March 7, 2011

one thing at a time

After laying in bed for over an hour, I've come to several important conclusions:

1) I need to stop going to bed so late/ sleeping in so late/ staying up so late because I'm not tired/ sleep in so late... my sleep schedule is all messed up and I have stuff to do so this needs to change.

2) I have a lot of mental clutter to take care of:
-- I have to finish the 5 pager and the 10 pager. ASAP. This has been hanging over my head and I cannot be productive in the rest of my life if I'm constantly pre-occupied with them.
-- I have to get caught up on all the reading for my classes. I embark on every semester knowing that  I have to handle it differently than I handled all the previous ones, yet I never acknowledge how much stress I create for myself when I put it off. I feel like the stress paralyzes me, and I would actually like to do more with my time than think about how stressed I am for not doing the things that I need to be doing.
-- I have to get this place cleaned up and clear out all the clutter. J and I talked tonight about how much visual "noise" there is, and how we both would be exponentially more productive if there wasn't so much stuff everywhere.
-- I have to lose weight. I know it, I've known it for a while, and though I can (theoretically) pretend it doesn't matter for as long as I'd like, I do know that overweight women (not men, but let's not talk about that) get paid less than their healthy-weight counterparts, regardless of qualifications. So, for the sake of money and vanity, I want to weigh less and do more.
-- We have to send out "thank you" cards. This has been bugging me for almost 6 months, and there's no need to keep it hanging over our heads.

3) To take care of all encompassed by #2, I need to start only on one thing. I propose I deal with Tuesday's exam, then tackle the 10-pager (I only need three or four more pages). When that's done (by Tuesday night), I will tackle the rest of the 5 pager (3 more pages).
When that's done, I will work on the two 4 pagers I need for Friday. The first is more than halfway done, and the second strongly correlates with a speech had I had to give as a junior in high school (meaning that I just need to reconstruct the argument).

To reiterate: one thing at a time. I have a hard time dealing with this, but I will do my best not to have a million tabs open and have all the documents open. I will deal only with information that's pertinent to the paper at hand.

4) I also need to work somewhere other than our apartment for the time being. It's messy and cluttered, and I can't concentrate here. I have no doubt that I can wrap up everything in a fraction of the time I've spent on it thus far, simply by not being surrounded by such a mess.

5) Once all those papers are out of the way (one at a time, one at a time), I can deal with the apartment. I will probably add a number of things to our "to sell" pile, and hopefully by April we will be able to clear out the library.

6) Once the mental and physical clutter is taken care of, I have no doubt I will be able to focus on other productive things, like making it to the gym and getting out a bit more.

** Breathing deeply.

It really helps to make a list. One thing at a time, one thing at a time.

Friday, March 4, 2011

one down, one to go

One midterm down, one to go.

Now I have to get cracking on two papers... one due later today and the other due next Friday.
Not to mention the 5 pager and finishing up the 8 pager


and here I thought I would get to relax this weekend.
All is well. Once I have all this stuff done it will be spring break and I will be going on an adventure with J. I already have the hotels booked and some restaurants picked out. Plus we're going to get a massage and going for a wine and chocolate tasting. :)

I'm very excited! Even though we got a break only about two months ago, it's been a busy and trying two months, and it will be nice just to relax and enjoy each other's company.
Once our Chicago adventure is over, we get to see some wonderful friends for a St. Slappy's day celebration. What could be better?!

(I better get working on those easter eggs.)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

about that time

It's mid-term time. 

And it's really stressful this time around. I think it has something to do with graduation riding on this... while I theoretically could take a summer class in order to graduate, this seems to be it. In a few short months, I will finally join the ranks of unemployable college graduates who don't stand a chance against more experienced candidates. 

Obviously I'm a little anxious over the whole thing. 

When J was graduating, I thought it was ridiculous that he didn't have a job lined up (or at least applied for), and I was convinced that when I finally graduated, I would have a clue about what to do, and would magically know where to apply and how to get a job.

Turns out that I was not only very wrong, but looking back, it seems cruel that I was so hard on J for something I knew nothing about. Yet when I asked him for advice about jobs and how to start looking, he didn't seem to have much to offer in terms of advice. Since he's planning on going back to school, and I doubt I have that option, I'm going to have to figure something out without the option of falling back on more schooling. Besides, I've been in undergrad for going on six years... what possibly could I need more schooling for?!

I've been thinking of compiling some writing samples and possibly seeing if I could get published somewhere. But that brings about a whole host of new anxieties... what should I write about? What if I suck? Where do I send my work? How do I know what's reasonable in terms of compensation? Worst of all, what if my best writing days are behind me? 

More importantly, what do I do in the meantime? J wants to start school in the fall, and I should have something lined up for then... I don't enjoy the thought of stressing about rent, car payments, and school costs, and I'm fairly certain my current income from babysitting won't suffice. I've thought about applying to some department stores and simply doing some hourly work while I figure things out... but few things scare me as much as the thought of getting stuck folding sweaters until I'm 50. 

Yargh. This post has been much too negative for my liking. Perhaps things will look up when I'm done with these midterms.