Category Archives: School is the pits

I’m still here.

I was going for an abandoned theme here, but realized it also fits that I feel like I'm in prison, heh.

I haven’t given up on this blog I swear. I’ll be done with school in a mere 42 days (yikes!) and I have comps (huge final exam for the program) in 11 days (eeeep!) so all of  my exciting posts (maybe only exciting to me) will have to wait until at least after comps.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Halloween!

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Sleepy Panda

Today I really miss college when I didn’t have a full-time job to deal with too. Even after college I used to be able to stay up late and it didn’t faze me. I think I’m realizing that I’m not the Energizer Bunny I once used to be…

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Reality Check

I was doing a little bit of math on my rainy walk to work this morning. My last assignment for the semester and forever (barring an insane decision to get my PhD) is due on December 13th. That is in 70 days. 7-0 days. For some reason 70 days seems a lot sooner than December…and that scares the crap out of me. I have soooo much to do before then. So I just want to warn you what I might look like come December:

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September Showers Bring…Fall?

Happy October everyone!! Finally, my favorite month is here! It has rained all most all week here. Ugh. I really don’t mind the rain that much. I do mind walking to work in it though. That’s not so fun. I’m looking outside now though and it is sunny and we finally have Fall temperatures. My October is jam-packed this year; between school and social events, I know it’s going to fly by (which means Halloween will be here any day right??).

Some things to look forward to in October:

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1. JMU Homecoming!! Last year was less than thrilling. Evan and I went down to Harrisonburg and sat in the rain watching a miserable football game. We ended up being the last two people sitting in our section. I have high hopes for this year though!

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2. Road trip!! No I’m not going to Edmonton, I just thought this cartoon was cute. Mike and I are headed out to The Magnolia State (Mississippi) later this month. Random, no? One of my best friends, Alpa is getting married next summer, hooray!! Her engagement party is out in Mississippi where her fiancé lives. Timeout. I just took the time to open a word document and add in the accent mark (it’s probably called something else, whatever, I never took French) and Firefox is mad, red squiggly mad. Booooo. Ok, time in! We decided to save some money and drive out to Mississippi instead of flying and make an adventure out of it! It’s going to be a pretty quick trip, but we picked out a few places to stop each way (we’re taking different routes coming and going). I don’t want to tell you everywhere we’re going, but I’ll give you a hint about one:

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Sorry that picture is so gigantic, but what is going on with his face?? By the way, I just looked at Elvis pictures for a solid half hour. Too fun. I will definitely be blogging about that trip though, so I want to leave some mystery. I can’t wait to see some parts of the country that I’ve never driven through and to celebrate Alpa and Nirav’s engagement!! SO happy for you two!

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3. Everything Halloween! I’m trying to find a few Halloween related things to go to. I’m sure a group of us will go to Markoff’s Haunted Forest again. Then there’s always trying to squeeze in a few good scary movies and AYAOTD with the roomie. Plus my good friend, Gretch, is throwing a Halloween party this year which should be tons of fun. Guess I better figure out my costume.

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4. Candy corn, pumpkin picking, apple picking, apple cider drinking, wine tasting, baking lots of fall goodies. I could go on and on.

So, you know, if anyone wants to come write a few papers, or read a few books, or study for comps for me…I wouldn’t complain!!

Happy October everyone!!


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Grades don’t matter…except when they’re MIA

After weeks of wondering how I did in my dreadful summer class (History of Consumerism in Early America…fun, no?), our grades were finally posted today, and I got…a B. I couldn’t be more excited. In grad school, I’ve honestly tried so hard to get As in all of my classes and I’ve been pretty successful, but in this class I just hoped to get the hell out of there with a B and my sanity. The jury is still out on that last part. Grades don’t really matter anyway, not like they did in undergrad, which I told my friend Hannah, who shared the torture with me this summer (yay, we’re done!). A summer class is supposed to be a nice (fairly simple?) six-week course. Someone forgot to tell our professor.

Last summer was amazing. I was in Archaeology Field School. Two weeks away from work. Two weeks out in the sun, digging around in the dirt for old “stuff” and I. loved. it. It was the best 3 credits of my Master’s (aside from Script Writing) and it was just an easy, care-free summer course. Then I took a summer class on how to “read” objects. Again, it was an easy class with a really fun, eccentric professor who seemed to know what it meant to teach summer classes. I was hoping for the same thing this summer, but it just didn’t work out. Instead I spent the summer feeling like this:

To be honest, I was really excited about the class going into it. It sounded like it could be really interesting, which made it hurt that much more when it was a major suckfest. Our professor was very vague about our assignments (which were plentiful) and early into the course I was already struggling to keep up with the reading (300-400 page books each week? No thanks.). Now two weeks into the class is when my dad passed away, so I was understandably a bit sidetracked. When I got back into town I had a really hard time focusing on the readings and the papers, but I got through it the best that I could. Apparently it wasn’t just me struggling with the class and the professor’s teaching methods, so at least it helped to have people to commiserate with.

Now a summer class is supposed to be short, six weeks and then you’re done. Not this one. Six weeks of torture and then you have a month to write a 15-page paper that you don’t truly understand even after asking. Then another 3 weeks to wonder if you did okay. I really don’t like to complain (that’s a lie, sometimes I really do), but this class just put me in a complete funk this summer…but today I can say: it’s over!

Side note: when I was looking for an image to use Google images came up with this (I searched for something about grad school):

I don't even want to eat it.

Pretty random, but gahhh, how lovely is that?? I don’t want to eat it at all, I don’t like chocolate. I want to put it on display. I mean I would probably eat that pink frosting. It is just too cute. I have strong feelings about the cupcake craze that seems to be going on, but that might be better saved for another post… besides it’s time to go home!

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Finally back in the kitchen

Seriously, if I could trade writing papers for cooking, you’d find me in the kitchen 7 days a week. I spent the last month stressing out over a paper that I only spent the last week writing. I’m not sure how that works out, but at least it’s over with. That awful, awful class is over and behind me and I finally have some free time.

I had the apartment to myself last night and decided to do a bit of cooking (in between episodes of Veronica Mars…my new addiction). First I made about 2 pounds of spaghetti. It was way too much, but I know what I’m eating for the rest of the week. My stepmom sweetens her spaghetti sauce and after eating her spaghetti, I can’t eat regular sauce. It’s so good. So I browned some beef, added some spices, the sauce, and some sugar. It was delicious! 🙂
Next on my list were blueberry muffins. Mmm. I had some blueberries that I needed to use and I really wanted a healthy breakfast food that I could stick in my bag on the way to the metro. I found a recipe online and tweaked it a bit. The original recipe is here. I wanted something a little bit healthier than that though. I had read about using applesauce in place of vegetable oil, so I decided to try that. I also used whole wheat flour. Super-healthy!

Here are the ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup (or more!) fresh blueberries

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and grease the muffin cups or use paper liners. I ran out of regular liners and had to use some of our stockpile of Halloween cups.

Combine flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Then in a separate dish, combine the applesauce, egg, and milk. Mix the wet and dry mixtures.

Now it’s time to add the blueberries. Now I was actually using blueberries that I had previously frozen. I would’ve preferred to use fresh ones, but I wanted to use up what I had. It would’ve made for a better picture too.

I love blueberries. They’re one of my favorite fruits. My grandma used to pick blueberries and freeze them and I would eat tons of them when we visited. As soon as I opened the bag that I thawed, I was right there in her kitchen eating blueberries. It’s funny where the sense of smell takes us. I digress…

Fold the blueberries into the mixture. I definitely used more than a cup…I think. I didn’t measure, I just threw them in. Once they’re mixed, fill the muffin cups to the top!

The recipe also included a crumb topping. It’s delicious, but took away from healthy muffin plan. I would maybe change that a bit next time (maybe walnuts instead?), but it sounded too good not to try. Now, the recipe says it makes 8 muffins. I ended up with 10. I also liberally applied the crumb topping and still had at least half of it left over, so that was a huge waste. Here are the ingredients, halved:

  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/6 cup whole wheat flour (now where did I put my 1/6 measuring cup?)
  • 1/8 cup butter, cubed
  • 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

Mix together the ingredients with a fork until it is crumbly. The butter can be annoying, but eventually it just turns out like it’s supposed to. Sprinkle on top of the muffins.

Bake for 20-25 minutes. Don’t pull an “Amanda” and burn your finger taking them out of the oven either. Oops.

I took two to work this morning and I can report that they are delicious! My boss tried part of one and he approved too, and I think he would honestly tell me if it tasted like crap. I’ll probably force Evan and Mike to at least each eat one too, but the rest are mine. All Mine!

It was so nice to do some cooking last night. Hopefully I’ll try out some other new recipes before classes start up again. Last semester! Thank goodness. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep up with blog better too.  =)

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Grad School is slowly killing me…or maybe it’s the weather.

I’ve been feeling an extreme lack of motivation lately…and when I say lately I mean the last 3 months or so. Maybe that’s what happens when you’ve been in grad school for two years and you’ve already taken all of the “fun” classes. Maybe that happens when you’re juggling school, work, internships, and what little bit of life you can squeeze in after all of that. Maybe it also has something to do with this:

Seriously D.C.? You are not helping me here. When I make it home from the metro, dripping with sweat, the last thing I feel is motivated. I hoped moving to a new apartment and having a new space would give me some new motivation. It didn’t. I got a new desk a few weeks ago…so far that hasn’t helped. I really just need to get through these two papers I need to write and then I’ll be okay. I’m loving my internship, so at least there’s that. I really don’t like to be a downer, I just really need to make it through the next 6 months. Does anyone have any motivational words of wisdom?

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