I should really post my entertaining happenings soon before I start to forget the details--things like offending the caterer and driving through 5feet visibility storms. or the anti-abortion pictures on the side of the road.
But anyways, until then here's a link to some pictures I took.
Some former fellow teachers and I were talking at lunch today about the different things we've noticed ourselves doing because we still have "the teacher mentality"
For example--we find ourselves trying to save the scraps of paper and every last paper clip instead of remember the supply cabinet is just a few feet away and almost always stocked with new supplies. Or acutally being able to ask for unique supplies--like a ruler or scissors, kleenex, (in my case a protractor and graph paper) and the pop-up post-it note dispenser--not having to supply one's own.
Or having trouble getting used to being able to leave work, at work. Ya know--we don't have to take it home! (Now granted, there will probably come times when weather/or upcoming deadline may result in work going home...) I still haven't gotten used to be able to come home without anything pressing to do and actually feeling like cooking!
I find myself in the mornings and afternoons as I leave for work/leave work having to stop and remind myself, that no, I'm not forgetting a back of grading or something like that. My shoulder is still confused that it ONLY carries a purse back and forth to work and the occasional small lunch.
And the fact that we don't have to be quite AS concerned about what we are doing in public and how it may or may not offend parents who could be nearby.
It's also hard, but pleasurable, to get used to the quiet...but yet also sort of missing the teacher camaraderie that would happen throughout the day. Or not getting used to be not being tied to a bell schedule. and the though that it is OKAY to take vacation time right before a holiday break! And being free to schedule dr appts whenever during the day rather than worry about getting things done during a conference period or after school or on a "free day" and really, none of us misses ALL the required inservice, committee meetings, and training days. or, even better DUTY! (a job where I'm not required to monitor the bathrooms or lunchroom or some other inane thing like that)
It's rather nice. I do miss interacting with students--but I'll look into working some kind of tutoring program on evenings/weekends once we get settled into our new home.
WE HAVE A HOUSE!!!! Closing is August 15th which is much sooner than we expected.
You can see details here: our new home
While some might think answer checking a bunch of math questions is boring, or proofreading/answer checking an entire test prep guide for 5th grade math, I actually have enjoyed my assignments the last few days. and a little before I left today, I was assigned my next project: put together two practice tests for a certain state's high school math test. (This is where I grab items, revise items as necessary, and write a few new items as needed!)
It's kind of fun because I get the mathematician/teacher/student persons in me analyzing many things. I also get to see the different standards for different states at different grade levels. For example, the NJ 5th grade math standards look like they'd give a set of beginning TX 9th graders some challenge.
Plus, I'm getting some new things to learn with the computer and publishing software. I guess those journalism classes I took for fun in high school are going to serve me well now....because there are many things within layout and what not that I'm familiar with. It's really strange (and aweing) to think of God's hand in my life that has led me to be fairly well prepared for this job, including the little things like working as a teacher aide for two years with K-2--which helped me practice communicating at a younger level--and the previously mentioned journalism/yearbook/newspaper things I did in high school.
I also think that the stint I pulled in college working as the data entry/filing grunt for 5 different accountants may also help me stay organized and proficient at working with a team of 3 project editors and then our senior editor.
While I generally feel okay about some of my grammar basics, I'm glad that I have many ELA people right around me to answer questions about the more subtle grammar and structure issues that could come up in my proofreading.
Plus, there are some fun people where I work, and while Josh is apparently going to miss my 2 months of summer vacation, I rather enjoy the freedom that comes with not being tied to a school schedule--and the ability to take off around holidays. (Teachers were not allowed to take the day off or the day after a major holiday without having exceptional cause) Work hours are a little flexible too.
here's hoping the house stuff works out soon so that I can find all my fun books and posters to decorate my cubicle with. and so that I can accomplish real cooking and baking again...
being that I started my first day of work today....sick. and am still so. I'm not sure what exactly it is....might be a bad sinus infection resulting from allergies and the fact that I've been super busy since Thursday. This last weekend will be resulting in a post in the near future.
In work related news: I have a cave-cubicle all to myself with a pretty computer and phone. and Lots of cubicle space to be decorated and drawers to fill. I even did some editing today....apparently the more boring kind until IT get me onto the server. I also think I will seriously enjoy the perk of having free drinks...including from the nifty little coffee machine that I will be trying out soon. There's also a nice patio area for people to eat outside if they want. and the job is nice and quiet! and I'm not blocked from my web-based email! and of course, the whole fact that I can revel in my own little world and not have to worry about paying attention to 70 teenagers and their drama. Plus, I'm going to get an awesome understanding of math at all grade levels. and there are nerds around who might make for interesting conversation every so often.
and really, the commute is an easy 30-40 minute drive....and won't be too annoying at all, unless I'm sick. But hey, within a few months my sick days will kick in.
After the hour wait at the DL office to become an official Iowa resident and driver, I find it kind of odd that the new licenses and transfers are lower priority than the license renewals (which I think can be done online in this state also). If you were renewing, you were probably in and out in 20 minutes, as they had 4-5 stations taking care of you rather than the 1-2 taking care of people like me.
Well, another weekend as flown by and I have begun my last week of unemployed freedom. Saturday with the Hoyts was just fun.
I was tired just from laughing all day. Really, some of the kids entertained me just as much as Josh entertained them. and it's a lot easier to remember all of them now that I have names to go with faces.... I'm not sure if it's good or bad that Carolyn sort of reminds me of me at that age. I really enjoyed the food....I had forgotten just how good garden fresh vegetables are! Those were the best pickled beets I've ever had--they had the perfect crunch! and the rest of the food was great too! like the cherry pie! I wish I could master the art of pie dough....I need more practice :-) (and more counter space....)
We have also placed an offer on a house--but we're keeping our options open as there is another offer that is supposed to be placed and the house is under what is called a "short sale" involving the Evil Bank that has caused much grief for other recent home-buying friends.
The plans this weekend include: getting new driver's licenses...so that police aren't confused and touchy when the driver's license state doesn't match the vehicle's plates... (I may have gotten a ticket... stupid highways with 65mph limits) Tickets are cheaper in Iowa, but, there isn't the nifty 'take defensive driving and we'll waive the ticket" option. I guess we'll see what happens to the insurance. It's a good thing I could safely say that I had only been in the state since June 13. Otherwise I might have gotten a second ticket for not changing my driver's license yet.
We also need to do a little grocery shopping and I need to go buy some more slacks and shoes for the new job. I haven't bought shoes in a few years.... Shopping for shoes and pants for someone of my height gets...frustrating. I also need to go get a wedding gift for the upcoming trip to see family and friends in Chicago area for the Moore wedding of much LeTU reunionness. We also have to talk to our mortgage people to get new numbers run, now that I have a job.
So, it's to be a busyish week.
And to celebrate the beautiful weather here, we went on a walk (seriously, we probably walked 5 miles)
To see my pictures of flowers, go here!
I'm getting better at close-ups and understanding a few things about adjusting for lighting. Next I'll work on understanding the F-stops.
After 2 trips through an hour-hour and half line at the temporary offices of the county, our cars are now officially Iowan.
After eating at the only Chik-fil-A in town, I accepted the job offer with Buckle Down Publishing company. It's going to be a whole new world for me and something very different from what I had expected and planned for the last 8 years. Apparently, God has been molding me for a different direction. The thought that crossed my mind last night, as i pondered and attempted to sleep was "remember that dream you had about writing?" and "maybe my name will appear in a long list of authors or something!!!"
So, after hoping next week will help us find a house and turn ourselves into official Iowans, and more other little stuff I'm sure....I will be starting July 14th in the world of publishing! The other thing that sealed the deal for me is that this would be a good start for my theoreticaly dream of maybe one day get involved with textbook publishing or test writing....I always thought it would be neat to work for Pearson (which happens to be based in the area also) or one of the other educational publishers.
What next, dare I ask?
I received a job offer from the publishing company today. Please be praying with me tonight as I prepare to (most likely) accept the job unless something huge comes up for me to not accept it.
The thought of closing the door on teaching is kind of sad for me...but I'm not sure that the door hasn't already closed itself. This job would also make certain things a lot easier...like transitioning into a grad program and give me something for my resume for a career outside of teaching, but still in education. (There are some big name education/publishing/testing companies in the area) I would also be able to do some tutoring in the evenings...and not have the stresses of school politics, grading, parents, .... and the other things that have caused me so much frustration the last few years. Granted, this job will come with its own frustrations.
Well, I need to break a bit....the allergies have not been friendly to me today.