Fun Facts and Realizations

So here I am… Busily doing my homework… and suddenly I realize that I’m graduating soon.  Which at first is like, “Yeah Buddy!” and going back to work.  But we have reached a point where the nearness of graduation has induced thoughtfulness.  I think about things like: How I need to edit my resume. What I’m going to be doing this summer. And (more importantly) What I’m going to wear to graduation.

So I stopped by and got my cap and gown this week. Now it’s hanging on a nail on the side of my closet.  I don’t know why there was a nail on the side of my closet.  But it has turned out to be a great place to hang my gown.

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Fun Fact: Did you know that Columbia was originally named “Kings College.”  It was founded BEFORE the revolutionary war.  And the 3 crosses inside the crown are symbolic of the Trinity.  And our motto is “In lumine tuo videbimus lumen.”  Yup. That means “in thy light we shall see light.” Taken from Psalms 36:9 of course.  And our seal includes so many biblical parallels that I will leave google.com to provide you with that information.  Though I can state the most obvious one is: the lady on the seal is holding a.. bible.  It says, “LOGIA ZONTA” (or roughly- the Living Word).  If you want to make a comment about the foundational history of university beginnings. or the changes in academia since the implementation of the separation of church and state. or even make a statement about light symbolizing truth and how at one time our founding fathers understood that to see truth- and really get any kind of ‘education’- we must have the light- which is Christ. Really. If you have any questions, comments, or snide remarks on the topic- I’d love to hear it.  Please comment below. 🙂

Also. Scanning through national geographic this week I came upon this photo:

Which had 2 effects on me.

1. It reminded me that my commute is bliss by comparison.

2. It reminded me that I just got a new camera.  Which I should practice using if I want to create any kind of phenomenal memory from my upcoming summer travels.  But since I wasn’t really willing to leave my house I decided to capture the dreary rainy weather on Saturday from my living room window. Here it is in all it’s splendor:

{The view straight out my window}

(The house kind of steals the scene. Although I think the pattern of dripping rain off the siding is kind of cool, so I forgive it.  I obviously didn’t move to East New York for the view anyways.)

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{Looking down to the left}

(Some of my neighbors make a better use of their yard than others.)
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{The view to the right}

(some very trendy gang tagging spots right there)

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{Ispy the train view}

(Yup. That two inch view of the train is the visual that connects me to the commuting world … and helps me know when to leave the house.)

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{Ispy on miniature setting on my camera}

(Which really is one of my favorite settings.  Even if it is the easy way out.)

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I know. It’s been an impressive week. I can only hope the same for you.

Springish Breakish

Yup. This “week” I had spring break. Which was really only 4 days because I had internship all week. and plenty o’ homework.  But. I did manage to leave my house.  I had coffee (let’s be honest. a mocha.) with friends.  I had a game night, complete with catch phrase and deviled eggs.

Tell you more? okay.

Story 1: Coffee (Mocha)

A few weeks ago I met (as mentioned) with my cousin and his gf for lunch.  They told me they spent one of their days in “Alphabet City.” My thought- “no such place exists”  She told me where is was. I thought, “um. hm. sure. okay.”

Then… 2 weeks later… I went to alphabet city for coffee. Hilarious. I know.

But on the train home I ran into someone from church.  I told her I was in Alphabet City.  She told me- that someone had just told her about Alphabet City that day and she thought to herself. “um. hm. sure. okay.” She grew up here.  She’s been riding the L train for 10 years. And she never knew about Alphabet City.

But to be fair- Alphabet City is LARGELY overlapped by East Village.  So maybe it’s redundant to have 2 names for it? Regardless. Alphabet City is the place in Manhattan where all the streets have letter names instead of numbers (i.e. Avenue B).

Yup. Fun fact. That’s all.

Oh. And Avenue B is the home of a nice little Cafe called.. B Cup Cafe. OR East Village Cafe (a bit redundant. did i mention that yet?) Nonetheless. It is a great location to sit for hours talking my way to sanity and learning how to play bananagrams.  Which I decided that I love.  (or maybe I should say like. It might be too soon to tell if I love it.)  But. I think that’s a lot to say since I hate (and am terrible at) spelling. So.. yeah…

look. Here’s the cafe:

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Look. These are my friends (and me).

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Look. It’s so cute inside- right?

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Plus. I spelled “jealous” on my first game!

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Story 2: A Culture Potluck

My game night this weekend was part of a ‘culture potluck.’ We had crab cakes.  And ginger chicken.  And pizza. And deviled eggs. And cake.  We played Catch Phrase and Quelf. Sounds like the midwest if you ask me. 🙂

Story 3: Little known fact

I found a new route home that includes 10 more minutes of walking and 15 LESS minutes commuting.  On the plus side- my walking takes me right through…. SOHO? BOWERY? IDK the neighborhood.  But I did pass the Bowery Mission.  And I also passed this church.  Preeetty cool.

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Also. If you were wondering how I feel about school: (only 42 more days!)

Apparently I say this way too much! But I'm over it.

But no. I’m NOT done.

Here’s to finishing the things you’ve started.

On Falling Off the Grid and Climbing Back

As of late my main complaint has been that I may be going insane.  Also.  I unwillingly cry nearly everyday.  Now my friends, that is just plain too many tears.  And is probably a sign that I am not entirely stable.

Which means it’s about time I get some perspective.  I mean.  This isn’t a lifestyle I can sustain.  In light of this revelation I have decided NOT to blog about how overwhelming school is/ will be/ has been.  Because the reality is- I am incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to be this stressed about something so silly.

word.

So. Moving on.

ASIDE from school.  I have observed that I mostly blog about 2 other topics. 1. The fact that I’m from Indiana and visit there.  2. I brag about my life in New York.  And since I haven’t been home in a while and I’m NOT talking about school b/c I’m SO over it.  I think I should talk about New York?

Well.  If you are wondering.. here are the pictures from my phone from the last 2 weeks.

1. This is a chart I made for my placement.  We learned about problem solving.  The kids tapped the strips of paper on to rank the size of problems.  I just made the chart.  And I was mostly just impressed with my personal coloring skills.  Yup.  Life at placement is a thriller.  But more on that later.

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2. I still do my laundry at a laundromat every week.  I used to do it on Mondays but my schedule changed and now I do it on the weekend sometime.  And nearly every time I do I fantasize about one day living in a place with my own washing machine!  Yup.  Some things don’t really change.

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3. Last week I met my cousin and his girlfriend here for lunch.  Well.  It was called brunch but it was 2 p.m. and we had tacos.  And they were here on spring break visiting her aunt.  And I got to pretend for about 2 hours that I was on spring break too.  It was nice.

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4. Here’s a picture of my new shoes.  Also.  I have noticed a lot more spare change hanging out on the sidewalks as of late.  Even though I never pick it up – it is my favorite kind of litter.

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5. I got to see Les Miserables on Broadway this week.  I went with a friend from school with tickets I got from school.  We sat in the very (I mean very) back row.  Which made it difficult to see the facial expressions of the performers.  Which did take away some from the experience.  But we still liked it.  As you can see from this picture- the camera on my phone does not bare well in poor lighting.  I know.  that’s really all you can see.  But it’s NOT going to keep me from posting it!

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ummm. yup.  Not a lot of photo-worthy events these past 2 weeks.

other interesting events as of late.

1. Measles are on the rise in New York.  One kid at my school was found to have it.  Makes me thankful for that MMR vaccine.

2. Our house has been battling cockroaches.  I don’t want to get ahead of myself but I haven’t seen any for 3 days.  I hope this means victory is ours!

3. I have a cold. Just, you know, the kind that makes you invest in lotioned kleenex (or tissue as they call it here).  It’s been thrilling.  And especially amusing when I attend large events- like Broadway shows.

4. Last night I went to a play production written and performed by high school students who stutter.  It was actually a series of 7 short plays.  They were good.  But I also got to nerd out on stuttering.  Which is an area of my field I know very little about.  So. Um. That was fun.  It was also fun to get $2 pizza and coldstone afterwards.  Have you ever tried eating pizza and walking? In midtown no less.  Sometimes, especially when I write in my blog, I realize that maybe some things that have become very normal to me were not so very normal not so long ago.  It’s kinda fun actually.

5. To end with a story.  The other week one of my kids said to me, “What is Taco Tuesday?””I don’t know,” I said.  “What do you think it is?”
“The day you celebrate tacos.”
“Do you have to eat tacos on Taco Tuesday?” I said.
“No.  But never eat more than 5 tacos a day!”

Hot Mess

This is how I would describe my frame of mind, especially this past week.

Let me recap.

February has been a hot mess. Rather. I have been a hot mess during the month of February.  A couple weeks ago I was talking to my roommate and said, “I think I’m on the fringes of sanity.” (meaning. I’m about to go insane.)  She responded, “I’m glad you are joining us again.” (meaning. You have been insane for a while.  Welcome back to sanity.)  From this I gathered that I have a pretty high tolerance when it comes to how much insanity I can deal with and still think I’m doing okay.

But this past week I maxed out.  I had comps on Friday.  Which is it’s own little demon that basically included 5 hours of word vomit as I relied on instant recall to answer 8 essay questions.

Wednesday I was stressed b/c of my placement and all the homework I had for next week and thinking about comps and I didn’t get home till after 8 pm, which made me NOT want to stay up and study but I felt like I had to. I knew I was at the cracking point when I became extremely annoyed with my roomies for attempting small talk- CAN’T THEY SEE I’M BUSY RIGHT NOW?!? (This is not a good place to be by friends.)  But then I read these verses in Lamentations:

22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”

And I thought.  I think everything will be okay.

And then Thursday happened.  The day before comps. Diagnostic group all morning. and I got a call from my placement which basically ended up with me needing to shell out another $130 to get fingerprints done (again) or I couldn’t come back next week.  So I was pretty stressed… The level of stressed that I don’t like to be.  (The fringes of sanity were looking pretty good right about then.)

But I prayed about it.  And did my best to take it moment by moment, responding to the information I had rather than my deepest fears.  I mean, let’s face it- it really was just another ‘first world problem.’

So I got to the fingerprinting office and the man said, “oh. this is for student teaching? no problem.” and clicked a button on his computer.  and all my problems went away.

And that’s when I decided that I really don’t know how people make it through grad school without Jesus.  I mean. I know people do.  I just don’t know how.

So Friday I took the comps. And got to hang out with my friends.  And then I hung out with other friends on Saturday.  And now I’m kind of regretting it because I do have a lot of homework for next week. But.  I’m also super loving having time.  Studying for comps took something like 10-15 hours of my week.  Not having comps is indeed a magical thing.

Also. On a totally unrelated topic.  Even in the middle of one of the most mentally taxing weeks of my life- while I was walking the streets of MY city- I decided that I liked it.  Again.  Yes.  I decided again that I still like New York.  What a surprise.  I know.

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Also.  It’s March! And this is what my kids are learning in school this week. (yes. this is from the internet. no. I didn’t make it. yes. I used it as a model for something I did make that I don’t want to bother uploading right now.)

What’s Your Problem? Teaching Problem and Solution {with a FREEBIE}

Which reminds me. On Wednesday we went on a field trip to an animal shelter and got to pet puppies for an hour.  How fun is that?!?