snapdragon76: (Tamaki and Haruhi)
I PASSED MY PRAXIS EXAMS!!!!! I did better on my PLT one than my SLM one, interestingly enough. That one was the one I was worried about the most. I had the results sent to my university, the Tennessee Board of Education and the North Carolina Board of Education. Virginia, interestingly enough, doesn’t require the Praxis for their teachers. Hmmm…

Classes start next week on the 24th. That’s also when I report for duty at my first school library. I have to start going to bed early and getting up early this coming week to train myself to do it for the rest of the semester. Not easy for a natural night owl like myself. Although, I had to get up at 6:30 for six years when I was working in an office, and I didn’t like it then either. But I’ve been spoiled for the past two and a half years of sleeping in whenever I wanted. Plus, I also have to keep on top of my other classes. Oy! I have to tell myself not to get ahead of myself and worry about things before they happen, but Anxiety doesn’t like to listen to reason…

The meeting I had with the second librarian I was assigned to went very well. This was definitely not her first rodeo with a grad student. She did say she had a hard time pinning down a schedule with the last student she had, because I think there were conflicts, but that’s not going to be an issue with me. I don’t have a job to go to that takes up the day, so I can come in all day, every day. Hell, I’ll probably be finished with my 100 hours with her before it’s time for me to go back to my other school when they return from their fall break. I might even be finished before the semester is over.

She even had a lesson plan idea for me to do for my video evaluation. I guess the school has an International Baccalaureate program and some of the students have had difficulty with proper citation of papers. So I need to come up with a lesson plan about a works cited page and plagiarism. I just hope I don’t puke my guts out beforehand.

I tried pleading with the Financial Aid office to see if, by chance, I could get my loan money early. No go. They said I can’t get it before the 19th, which is Wednesday. HOPEFULLY I’ll actually get it then instead of a few days after, so I can have time to get some things I need before the 24th.

I’m thinking of switching from my bank to a Credit Union. I’ve done a little research and it sounds like a CU would be better suited to me. I know there are pretty much only regional branches, but many are connected by networks so that you can use them without being charged a fee. Plus, they don’t have a lot of other fees that national bank chains charge since CU’s are not-for-profit. I’m done with being screwed over by my bank and its ridiculous fees and I think my mom is too.

I have my next Remicade treatment on the 19th, so I have to go tomorrow and get my bloodwork done. Hopefully I won’t run a red light this time. I wonder if I should get my allergy shot while I’m out as well since I usually get them done on Wednesdays.

Since Verizon is charging me a crapton of money in order to reinstate my cell phone, I think I’m going to go with one of those StraightTalk deals from Walmart. I can use my old iPhone 5 as just a phone for going back and forth to school and such in case I need to use it for emergencies or letting people know when I’m leaving and the like. Mostly for mom’s peace of mind since she tends to worry about me a lot. But, being she’s my mom, she’s gonna do that… 😉
snapdragon76: (Tamaki and Haruhi)
So yesterday was my birthday. I turned 39. I don’t feel 39. Well, not emotionally. Physically things have started to go a little downhill, mostly my back. I had a low-key birthday, which was fine. Mom fixed my favorite meal for dinner, which was excellent. I had a lot of people write birthday greetings on my wall on Facebook and I got some cards in the mail. Maybe once we get a little more income coming in, we can celebrate. I still owe mom for her birthday last month. I hope to do something special next year for my 40th birthday. Maybe I’ll be on the cusp of employment by then…

I ordered a few things from Amazon with a gift card I got from my dad and step-mom, which arrived today. I got a BluRay of the last Hobbit film and a few graphic novels. I tried not to go overboard, since I couldn’t pay for shipping on my own, so I had to make sure the gift amount covered both the purchases and shipping. I’m still glad with what I got.

I left a message with my bank saying they can stop calling my house and leaving notes in my mailbox informing me of how little I have in my bank account. I have access to online banking as well as a mobile app. I can keep track of how little I have that way, thank you very much. Save a tree and stop calling me!

I haven’t received my Praxis scores yet. It’s kind of frustrating. I need to have more patience in the matter. If only…

I also looked up to see when I’d be receiving my student loan, and it said sometime around the 19th of August. Classes start on the 24th and I hope it’ll be enough time to buy my books and whatever else I’ll need before classes start. I have a meeting with one of the librarians I’ll be working with on Friday in order to set up a schedule for my Practicum. I haven’t heard from the other one yet, but I emailed her work and I don’t know when classes start at the school, so I don’t know when she’ll read it.

I also turned in the paperwork I needed for my Intent to Graduate at the Graduate Services Office a few weeks ago. I got an email saying they received it and that the procedures will be started for graduation. So there’s that taken care of.

And I think this is the most I’ve posted in quite a while…
snapdragon76: <3 Kenshin! (Kenshin)
I took my first Praxis exam yesterday afternoon. I think I did okay. None of the questions that were on the exam were on any of the study guides. Most of it was common sense as well as stuff I had studied from my classes. Hopefully I did well enough to get passing marks per state qualifications.

I have my final one next Friday, and I can only hope I do well on it as well. I’ll be more than happy to be over and done with all of this soon.

I set up an impromptu meeting with one of the librarians I’ll be working with for my Practicum so that we can set up a schedule for next semester. I haven’t heard from the other one yet, but I think that’s because I sent an email to her work address (the only one I have) and classes haven’t resumed yet. One school is on a year-round schedule and the other is on a regular one.

Mom is kind of champing at the bit for my loan money to come in. I mean, I know there are some things that need taken care of, like catching up on bills and getting the cars fixed, but I’d like to have some of it for me to use. There’s a few things on Amazon I’d like to get as well as a few other things. I need to get new clothes for my Practicum (as well as future employment) that are more akin to working in a school library. I have a feeling my regular jeans and T-shirts won’t cut it, lest I be mistaken for a student. Plus, I owe mom a birthday gift and a birthday dinner, in addition to shopping for Christmas early since I doubt I can during the actual holidays.

Hopefully it won’t cost too much to get the cars taken care of and I can have enough left over for an Apple MacBook Air for me to take back and forth to the library once I finish with my Practicum for the day so I can catch up with my own schoolwork. I can get a refurbished one with a student discount for about $740.00 or so. It’s lighter weight and slimmer so it’ll be easier to haul back and forth, in addition to not having a lot of other stuff on it to slow it down any…

Summer here is pretty sluggish. We can’t really go anywhere and I have no money to see any of the movies I want to see, so I’ve mostly been hanging around at home trying to do some casual reading and catching up on some TV shows here and there. I only go out once or twice a week to either get my allergy shots or get a bite to eat when I’m able.

I’m going to go now since there are a few things I want to do yet today before I get too sleepy to do any of it.
snapdragon76: this is made of win and awesome (Groverfield)
Life apparently likes to take a dump on me at the most inconvenient times…

Yesterday my car decided to throw a belt while we were running errands. Luckily we were able to get back home ok, but it can’t be driven until the problem is fixed lest we risk damaging the engine. Naturally this happens before I get my student loan in order to be able to fix it.

A friend of ours said he’d take a look at it tomorrow, so hopefully we can get it fixed enough that it can be driven again so that I can go take my first exam on campus on the 17th. I know at some point I’ll have to get a newer car, but I can’t right now. Hopefully I can get a few more years out of it…

I filled out the form I need to file for my Intent to Graduate. I just have to turn it in to the Graduate Studies Office when I’m on campus next week. It’s pretty basic, really. I just needed to fill out my name as I want it on my diploma, the size of graduation robes I’d need and my major information.

I did hear from my advisor and she told me the schools I’ve been assigned to for my Practicum and they’re the ones I wanted. Mostly because I had already interviewed the librarians there for another class of mine, so I have a familiarity with them as well as the libraries themselves. I’m a little excited and yet nervous at the same time. I think I’ll be OK though…
snapdragon76: from the New Moon trailer.  (Fursplode!)
I’m disgusted with my bank and banks in general right now. Specifically their “insufficient funds” charges. I understand if one is continuously using their checking account and it doesn’t have money in it, but if you’re like me and stopped using it altogether because I didn’t have money in it, and yet I STILL get charged $36.00… it’s a bit ridiculous.

Maybe I need to contact them and say, “Hey, I only get paid once a month. I shouldn’t be punished for not using my account BECAUSE I don’t have money in it, rather than using it with the full knowledge that I don’t have money in it, and still get charged.”

Naturally, I can’t just keep money in there to have in there, because I have to be the one to pay the rent, which is the vast majority of my monthly income (from an annuity I was awarded years ago), not to mention the monthly amount I pay to keep my health insurance. Everything else gets sucked into overcharges and it’s no wonder I never have any money for damn well anything! My fucking bank keeps sucking me dry!

I did apply for a GA position at the university’s lab school in their library, so hopefully that will happen so that I can 1. get my final semester of school paid for and 2. I can get a monthly salary to help with day to day expenses, since it seems I’m the major support around here. Well, I can’t say that since mom pays for utilities out of her meager Social Security payments. All I can say is, that I hope I can get a job where I can actually fully support myself rather than have the banks screw me over enabling me to not have any money whatsoever for any other expenses.

I do have my Praxis exams scheduled for next month. I’ve been making some study cards and hopefully I can do well on these stupid things so that I can get licensed and one more step towards employability.
snapdragon76: *slurrrrp* (Tea!)
Well, here we are in the middle of November already. Everything seems to be going by so fast. We’ve already had some snow, the day after Halloween. Mom and I went to do some errands and it seems everyone was out that day too! So crowded! Most of the leaves of the maple tree in front of the house have already fallen. There are still quite a few trees full of color out there, however.

School is a little rough at present. We’re getting toward the end of the semester (last day of classes are December 4th). Right now, I’m struggling with trying to write a Literature Review for the Research Proposal we have to write, neither one I’ve ever done before. I’m trying to not go into full anxiety mode right now. It wouldn’t be a big deal except the Research Proposal is worth a full 50% of our total grade!! Yikes!
But, I’m trying to be Zen about the whole thing. It didn’t help matters any that I have three assignments due all on the same day. I don’t know how people who go to school full time and also work full time manage to do it. I applaud them.

I’m going to be writing up my Christmas/Holiday/Winter Season letter soon. If anyone on here would like me to send you one, please email me and let me know where to send it. My email address is danielle.bates32@gmail.com. Also if you’d like my address for cards as well.

Things are kinda tight money wise since neither one of us has a job. Mom is hoping to get her car fixed so that she can make a more serious effort to look for work. I’ll believe it when I see it. I did say I’d help her update her resume, and hopefully I can finish my classwork in order to help her out.

Peace out!
snapdragon76: My Chinese Zodiac sign (Japanese dragon)
I hope everyone had a nice Christmas, those of you who celebrate that is.

Ours was very low key, but still pretty special.

Mom and I slept out in the living room Christmas Eve since we keep the lights on all night. I like doing it because it's kinda neat in a way. Sleeping under the Christmas tree with all the lights on. It's kinda magical.

I was the only one who got gifts since mom and I will be having our own Christmas celebration in late January due to having more of an income flow by then. Mine were from my dad, and I was very pleased.

I got the 25th Anniversary set of Mystery Science Theater 3000, the Hyperbole and a Half book by Allie Brosh (huge fan of her blog), the How To Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting To Kill You book by The Oatmeal and a Cat Lady 'action' figure, which is a testament to my dad's weird sense of humor.

We didn't go to church services this year. It was a little strange not going, but I think we're still on the search for a full time church home. The one we've been going to a few times before was pretty nice, but I don't really know the reasoning for us not going back. Who can say...

We had a meal of ham, mashed potatoes and corn. It was minimalist, but since it was just the two of us, it served our purposes just fine. I'd have liked some rolls or pie for after, but our money is very tight right now and we couldn't afford it. We do have plenty of ham left over though.

Our microwave quit on us again. And it's the same problem as our last one had, strangely enough. The power works and everything, it just won't heat anything. We let the landlord know about it, but he hasn't contacted us about it yet. Hopefully it can get replaced soon since even though we can reheat things on the stove top, microwaving is so much easier.

This time of year is also a difficult one for mom especially. My older sister died the day after Christmas in 1979 and even though it's been 34 years, it's still rather melancholy. I try to cheer mom up a little, but I don't know if I help or not. I know that there are things that can't be helped, but I still like to try anyway.

I have no plans for New Year's other than what I usually do, which is stay home and watch the ball drop on TV and maybe have some sparkling cider. Mom and I did make plans to go to the movies on New Year's Day, so hopefully that's still on the agenda. I'd like to go and see Frozen and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug if possible. I'm not looking forward to the party our neighbors are more than likely gonna throw on New Year's Eve which will undoubtedly be loud and obnoxious. -_-

My classes start in another couple of weeks or so, and I'm hoping I'll be able to get the things I need before then. I don't know when the GA position starts officially and I'm assuming I'll be contacted with more information once everyone at the school returns from Winter break. I did find out what books I'll be needing, and one of them costs almost $200.00!! Yikes! I think I can find a used on for cheaper, and if not, there is the option of renting if need be. My GA job will pay for my tuition, but not my books or any other expenses.

Mom seems to be settling into her new job fairly well. She still has more training to do, and she needs to be trained on the company wide computer system, but that won't be until January 8th since they only do them on Wednesdays and they have two Wednesdays off in a row. I hope she'll take a picture or two of her work area since I don't think I'll be able to see it in person.

That's all for now. I still plan on sending out letters, but it may not be until after the New Year since I have to get ink for my printer as well as stamps. So rather than a Christmas letter, it'll be more like a New Year's letter.

Take care, and stay warm all of you in the colder climates!!
snapdragon76: from the New Moon trailer.  (Fursplode!)
There are times where I love technology and other times, not so much. This is one of those times.

My laptop decided to take a dump on me for some reason unknown to me. It was doing perfectly fine all of yesterday morning, when it shut itself off. I tried turning it back on only for the exact same thing happen. So I decided to let it sit for a bit to see if that would do anything.

Nope!!

I’d like to do a recovery or a diagnostic or something, but since it can’t stay on long enough for me to do it, I can’t figure out the problem. It’s only three years old and should not be doing this. It’s incredibly frustrating.

To make matters worse, since mom’s laptop upchucked on her, she’d been using mine in order for her to check her emails and stuff for when she applied for jobs. Now, she can’t do that either! My desktop is working fine for the time being, so hopefully that can hold out. I’d like to be able to figure out what the issue is and get it fixed since a lot of my stuff is on there and I’d still like to be able to use it. I have recovery disks somewhere, I just gotta find ‘em.

Right now I’m typing on my Surface that I got with some money I got from the State of Florida (which I’m not gonna mention to anyone on Facebook since I did whinge a bit about lack of funds, which is still true). I got it mostly to use for school so I could have something small and lightweight for when or if I needed to go onto campus for anything. But, it’s very limiting with what it can do as a regular laptop.

I also got a few items from Amazon that I had my eye on, like some rings and a new optical wireless mouse since my other one was being spastic. I also got some winter stuff, like a scarf, hat and gloves as well as a pair of boots and a coat.

I’d like to go and see Catching Fire if possible and I’ve been hearing lots of good things about it. I still have some money left over, so we’ll see. Movies here are so expensive for some reason. Much more so than in Florida, oddly enough.

Mom hasn’t heard anything back from the place she had the interview with. She talked to a friend of ours who works for the same company and she told mom that it sometimes takes a little bit of time. I do hope she gets this job, not only for the money but for mom’s self-confidence. She feels very discouraged about it.

Our washing machine broke down, so we had to go to the Laundromat and do laundry. We dried them at home though since the dryer works fine. We think it may be a thrown belt, since the agitator won’t work, but then it stopped draining water, so we have no idea what it might be. If it’s not one thing, it’s something else…

Here’s hoping things can get on the right track fairly soon.
snapdragon76: Did I mention that I like reading? (books)
I broke my Facebook and Twitter hiatus today officially. I'm gonna ease my way back in and try not to be on quite as long or check in as often as I did. That way I can still have more time to do other things also.

I had a meeting with the Dean of graduate studies, the Assistant Dean and the head of the department of the program I wish to apply to yesterday afternoon. I think things went pretty well. I didn't freeze up or stumble over my words like I tend to do when talking to people of authority. I said my main concern was that my GRE Quantitative scores would probably not be all that high due to my learning disability and that I didn't want it to hinder my acceptance. They eased my concerns and said that the scores were only a fraction of what they take into consideration when admitting students and that based on my other information it probably wouldn't be difficult for me to get in the program. The head of the program also said that the only math-based course I'd be taking was more of a Statistics type course and that if I register with the students with disabilities office, I could get the additional help I needed (which I had planned to do anyway). They do have a copy of my testing that I had done when I was in Community College, so that will help also.

I made an appointment to take the GRE for next Thursday for 1:30 in the afternoon. It's in Bristol since there were no openings on the campus for anytime in November. It's about 45 or so minutes away, and we need to be there a half an hour beforehand so I can register. So, hopefully my mind won't go blank when it comes to actually take the test. And it takes a total of four hours to take it, with a ten minute break halfway through. It'll be a loooong afternoon.

The weather is gonna take a dip for a few days next week. Enough that we may even get frost and even snow. I do need to see about getting some winter clothes in the near future. Mostly thermal undies and some boots and coats. It will be kind of nice to have a Christmas that actually feels Christmasy though.

We're trying to conserve gas, so we haven't been going very many places, and it can get kind of boring after awhile to be stuck inside the house all day. Hopefully mom will be able to find a job soon so that we can have some income coming in and actually afford to do more things around here. Here's hoping for the best!!

June 2017

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