Friday, April 28, 2017

grad school | the next year

i am DONE with my second semester! that semester was so intense that it doesn't even seem real that i survived it! it was like January 3 came & i started the semester full force and it was like treading water the whole time and hardly coming up for air. i kinda look back and think "where did that second semester go?"

now, i only have one year left before i graduate... with my masters! that is so crazy! i am taking summer classes so it will be a full year, but i am excited about everything to come! i wanted to process through all of the changes that will be coming this next year, so what better place to process than through blogging!

summer job
i accepted a summer job at the organization i did my internship at this first year of school. i'm super excited about it & glad to be there for another three months because i wasn't ready to say goodbye yet! i work at a small non-profit and i just love the staff! this job will only be 18 hours a week which is perfect because i will be taking 2 classes this summer. so i will be working 3 days a week (plus a few hours each week for my other job), but shorter days at only 6 hours a day. so it will be somewhat of a break from my 8-9 hour days all semester. it will also be nice to make a little extra money to help pay for summer school (why does it have to be so expensive?!) i am taking next week off completely to decompress, and then starting this job on May 8!

summer classes
i am taking two classes over the summer which will allow me to have a little bit of a lighter load this next year. i will be taking 4 classes in the fall, but thanks to me taking summer classes i will only have 2 classes next spring which is my last semester! i am so glad for that because i will have my capstone course (that incorporates the whole program into a project) and i will be studying for & taking my licensure exam hopefully in April. so that way i will graduate and be licensed at the same time!

one of the classes i am taking starts May 20th and goes through August 5th... and it is on saturday mornings - for 3.5 hours. yuck! but it was the only time the class was offered over the summer & i wanted to take it... so i am taking it. this class is literally all summer long, so i wish there was a little bit more of a break between this semester and starting summer... but i love the professor who is teaching the class, so i am excited to take it! my second class is a 6-week course that starts at the end of June and goes through August 10th. (the fall semester starts August 14th so not much of a break on the back end either!) those 6 weeks will be crazy because i will be in both classes at the same time (and working 2 jobs!) but i have the same teacher for both and i just love her!

saturday classes
my classes next school year will be all day on saturdays because the satellite campus is set up for part time students. so i was hoping to at least have my saturdays over the summer, but at least it is only one full year (from this May to next May) that i will have to sacrifice my saturdays. it really wouldn't be a big deal, but since Thomas is only off on saturdays & sundays that only allows us to have 1 full day together each week. (and on the days i'm at my internship i don't get off until 11pm, so some weekdays we will not even see each other.) it will be a hard year, but sacrifices have to be made when you're chasing your dreams. ;)

the one benefit to having saturday classes is that on weekdays when i am not at my internship, i can do my schoolwork while Thomas is at work. these past 2 semesters, i was in class or at my internship while Thomas was working, so the only time i could do schoolwork was on nights and weekends while Thomas was home. so at least there is one benefit to the saturday classes. and at least they aren't saturday night classes! i will go in at 8:30 and get out at 2:30 so i will still have somewhat of a day left (if i'm not super exhausted from being in 2 classes!)

i am so excited for my internship! i really wanted to be at the hospital & i will be in the ER so it should be great experience! i love my supervisors that i have met and am looking forward to working with them! i am not too crazy about the 12 hour shifts (especially because it is from 11am - 11pm) but it will be nice to only have to work 1 day a week every few weeks. (generally you work 8 hours shifts so it's 2 days a week, but i will have a more crazy schedule since i'm in the ER!)

i think my placement is one of the best though, and i will gladly work 12 hour shifts to work with my supervisor and get the variety of experience that i will get! the hospital i am at is a medium paced one... so i will get ER experience and floor experience. it will be nice to get to see how things work in the different units outside of the ER also. my supervisor also said she likes to take trips to other places that are connected to the hospital or that we refer to... so it will be cool to kinda see how the other side of the process works as well!

the other thing about 12 hours shifts is, that the schedule varies from week to week. so like, one week my supervisor will work Mon & Tues, then the next week she will be off Mon & Tues and work Wed & Thurs... and i have to work when my supervisor works. so my schedule will not be consistent from week to week, which may make it hard to plan things... but it is all part of the experience.

the original plan was to be here for 2 years, since i thought i had to take all of my classes at the main campus. but when i got my internship back home & found out i could finish my last year of classes back home... that changed things! so we will be moving back at the beginning of August, living with our parents while we look for a house, and then eventually buying a house and being settled for a while! so it is back to nomad-ish life for us!

i know i will still be pretty overloaded with my fall schedule, but we plan to start looking for a house over the winter... but we will still have to figure out how everything will work out. since i will not be working yet, we will only have one income... i am not sure how much that will hurt us with interest rates for a home loan. so we have a lot to figure out, but things are still moving along! honestly, school is so intense that i don't even want to think about looking for a house until the Fall semester is over, and then spring will be crazy with licensure and capstone... so it stresses me out to think about having to do anything on top of that! we will see how it all works out - thankfully we have gracious parents that will allow us to stay with them while we are figuring it all out.

next school year
this past year we had to take a field seminar class each semester, which is a seminar class for the internship. it was on fridays and there were a lot of papers for it... so that class on top of my other 4 was like having 5 full classes. our second year in the program we do not have to take the seminar class, so i am happy to have one less class and my fridays free! i am taking 4 classes in the fall so that i will only have to take 2 in the spring! woohoo!

i am taking 2 electives in the fall semester and luckily they are offered online, so i don't have to drive to the main campus for any of my electives. (the other 2 i am doing during the summer at the main campus because i will be down here until August) i am just hoping that i do okay in online classes. i took a few in undergrad (but those were for an accounting degree, so a completely different set up) so hopefully they won't be too difficult or confusing! one of my online classes has 3 "live" sessions where we all have to be signed on during the class time (Wed night from 6-9pm) and have live class sessions. so those 3 nights should be interesting! ;)


so, my second semester ended yesterday... and summer school starts in 3 weeks... and it is full steam ahead from here on out (no break between summer and fall)! i am glad that i have 3 weeks off from school in May though, because our anniversary is in May so we are taking a short trip to celebrate! we haven't really taken any overnight trips by ourselves in a while... so it will be nice to get out of dodge! and rest up for this crazy year ahead!

Monday, April 10, 2017

writing | doors

when your favorite door closes
it can be easy to despair
but don't stare at that door so long
you can't see the new one over there

sometimes we have to change our path
though it's not easy, nor is it quick
sometimes we must build a new way
piece by piece, brick by brick

yet it is not the destination
but rather the journey that we need
to challenge us and grow us
and help us to succeed

so gather all your courage
and don't you fret about before
because i will be right beside you
as you open this new door

Monday, April 03, 2017

project 12 | March

i love having my years captured month by month and plan to keep up with project 12 this year as i can. it's fun to look back on the details of our year at the end of it, as well as seeing how we change through the photos each month. :)


it was so nice to have a week off this month for spring break! we took advantage of having a free weekend and took a few day trips to the coast which was fun! we got to see a lot of dolphins at sunset jumping out of the water which was really neat! we also visited an interactive zoo where we got to feed monkeys and lemurs! Thomas also had a work trip Tues-Thurs of my spring break week, so i tagged along with him! it was in our hometown but his company put him up in a hotel so it was like a mini-vacation! i got to meet some friends for lunch and visit family, but i also had a lot of focused time to work on papers for school. it was nice to have slow mornings and complimentary breakfast during the week though! ;)

i got offered an internship for next year also which is super exciting! it's at a hospital and was my top pick for an internship! it is also really nice to have the stress of preparing for the interview over with now! ;) the internship is in our hometown, and i will be able to finish my last year of classes at the satellite campus there as well, so we are able to move back home a year earlier than planned - which we are excited about! it will also be sad to leave our new city though because it has been a fun year here. but at the same time the plan was always to move back, so it is probably easier to move back after a year than after two years!

all of the work has exploded this month & the explosion is carrying over into April. i actually worked on 3 of my papers during spring break to get ahead, yet somehow still felt behind the entire month. the past few weeks i've had 2-3 papers due each week, and it's the same the next few weeks. but the week after Easter i have 4 papers and a presentation. what is this semester?! sooooo many papers!

my maternal grandmother had a stroke towards the end of the month, and is doing a little bit better now. she is currently in rehab & has gained movement back in her right arm, regained speech and swallowing. (back story: my paternal grandmother had a stroke over 2 years ago and never regained movement in the left side of her body, so she is in a nursing home full time.) health is such a crazy thing because you don't think about it when it's good, and it only takes one bad health event to drastically change someone's life. she is in rehab and improving each day though.

on top of everything else, we had our a/c go out... and we had termite issues in our apartment! i noticed a hole in the wall on the inside of our apartment & there were termites eating through the plaster. so gross! thankfully the apartment complex wanted to get both issues fixed quickly too so they have been dealt with - but it has just been added stress this month!

March 3 - i did a demonstration at school for a substance abuse training program for one of my classes (& passed!)
March 4 - we got to feed monkeys, lemurs, and birds at the interactive zoo!
March 5 - we moved our queen bed to storage because we set up my grandma's kind bed in the apartment! (it is so nice to have some extra sleeping space!)
March 6 - day trip to Charleston and Sullivan's Island
March 7 - traveled to the upstate for Thomas's work training
March 8 - i had lunch with friends, dinner with my parents, and visited my grandma
March 9 - we traveled back from our mini-vacation
March 11 - we took one last day trip down to the coast to finish off spring break ;)
March 19 - fed giraffes at the zoo and saw Beauty & the Beast!
March 25 - visited my grandma in rehab
March 26 - focus group for one of my group projects

what have you been up to this month?