Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Light at the end of the Tunnel

I feel like I'm perhaps on the upswing here. Had some good work outs this week. On top of grading and stuff thus far (a set of drafts come in today, and I will crank those out before afternoon). I got about 900 crappy words written yesterday, for the article due Monday (yeah, up pressure cooker anyone?? ha! and it only needs to be 2000-3000 words), so that did make me feel a little bit better.

I have a feeling though that some students have just fizzled out and I do wonder if I'll get a complete set of drafts or not this morning. We shall see what happens.

Today I really need to try to clean this place up, or start cleaning this place up. It's gross. Seriously. I'm embarrassed. But with the pace of this course, the exhaustion, a week of being sick, two dogs who are majorly shedding because of the heat, shit. It's more than a body can bear. But I will make a valiant effort this afternoon when I'm done grading. I will open a bottle of wine, prep the food for tonight, and drink and clean because cleaning is always better and doable with wine.

Totally unrelated--but does anyone out there watch Hell's Kitchen by chance? First of all, I LURVE Gordan Ramsay (say what you will--I get taken to task on this all of the freaking time, so whatever. I love him). But I hate this season. This is the first season I'm pulling for the men, and I find more of the women this season to be complete irredeemable human beings. They are so so gross. And I can accept that it's done for ratings and for entertainment, but as I was catching up on the show yesterday afternoon, I had to stop watching. They are seriously so disgusting that I can't even enjoy the spectacle of the show anymore. Like really? That's how you want to present yourself to a national audience and to people to are already your clients or patrons? Or am I seriously just getting old? Or is it a combination of both? I can't tell.

Anyway, four more days of actually showing up to campus left. Three more days of class time, one of which is peer review, the other two of which are in class writing for the entire class so they can work on their essays and ask questions as they're writing. And then I'm done! Except for grading, but I'm done! Yippee! That leaves me two months to write my monster (literally and figuratively) article and start developing the other one and prep for the fall class and work on a course proposal. And while the husband is in class and doing homework, I will do my own work. I certainly have to make a schedule for that, but I'll worry about that when this is done. But I'm so close to being finished with this quarter I can hardly contain myself!!

P.S. I also love the new Dallas. I DVR'd last night's episode so I'm not up to date yet, but I hope it sticks around. I'm giddy with nostalgic delight.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Grading Blues

Honestly, I'm glad I didn't bust my ass Friday to get these drafts done. Out of 21 papers, I had 9 Fs (that's including the one student who's never shown up but is still enrolled for whatever reason). The Bs outnumbered the Cs for the remaining half of students and there was one A and one D. Many of the students with Bs improved their grades from essay 1.

Part of me feels like if half the class has failed, then it's my fault. That there was something wrong with the assignment or the way I taught this. But in the interest of trying make myself not feel like a loser bad summer teacher, here's what I noticed about these Fs:

All but 2 of the students who earned Fs do not participate in class. A couple are usually on their phones texting the entire class period, and I don't usually see their books. Nor have they indicated that they are even keeping up with the reading. And the videos we watched for their essays--well, they were not the students taking notes (which is clear by the fact that these students got a lot of information wrong. I guess if you're sleeping, it's hard to get the correct information). Another thing that I noticed, too, was that for the most part, their final drafts were almost exactly the same as their rough drafts, only they just added a page. So despite my providing very specific comments on the draft, the students who earned Fs did nothing to the first halves of their essays and just added more plot summary, more speculation about what might happen if things were different than what we talked about. A couple had no conclusion. One had an introductory paragraph that was one sentence. Not a single one of these students came to see me either about the comments or their drafts. Also, we had a thesis workshop day. We spent the entire day on thesis statements. We worked in groups with their actual thesis statements, and we workshopped as an entire class. We went over different strategies for writing a thesis statement, and I sent them home with a handout that they had to do to get them to keep working on the thesis statement and basically have them outline what examples they were going to use to support said thesis statement. Not a single one of these F papers changed their thesis statements from the rough draft. And not a single one of them has gone to the writing center either for help.

Lots are still struggling with the concept of the thesis statement still, and they have a chance to revise before the end of the quarter next week. We'll see what happens. But of the remainder, I can at least see the change in drafts to get to more of an argument. And we'll work on thesis statements again tomorrow and prewriting strategies some more so they can formulate an argument for essay 3.

So am I supposed to feel bad about those students who are clearly not putting in the effort? Yes, I know there are all kinds of reasons why students don't do the work and freak out about writing (I'm freaking out about my own writing right now), but if the students are ignoring the comments, not taking advantage of my office hours, not participating, and not even changing the rough draft for the final draft, what in the world else can I do besides write the paper for them (which I feel I practically do when I say things in class like "For your paper, you need to do x, y, and z. And here's exactly how you do it."). Nothing causes me more pain in my teaching than comp. Or is all of this just my lame ass attempt in trying to make myself not feel like a total failure of a professor when I actually am. I will admit, I do wish that I had more energy to give to them, and I do feel like exhaustion has affected my teaching in the classroom somewhat, but it hasn't affected my feedback or my availability. But again, is that just my lame ass attempt to hide the fact that I might suck these last two comp quarters?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Light at the end of the tunnel.

I have decided that today will not be a marathon grading session.

I will get through as many drafts as I can during my office hours. And then I will finish them tomorrow. I'm hoping to get through at least 10.

I have a marathon draft commenting day on Thursday. I'll save my energies for that.

Today we look at an essay. Tomorrow we finish the movie and talk about it in context of today's essay. Wednesday is a short essay we read. Then from here on out, all I do is look at drafts. No more prep.

The end is in sight.

While I didn't get hardly any sleep last night, I feel okay this morning. Okay enough to go for a run before class since it's like 100 in the afternoons now, there's no way I'm running after class.

Also, I think there may have been something going around over here, contributing to my exhaustion and its accompanying depression. One of my friends has been sick all week and battling a 101 degree fever! And the husband said there were a couple of cases of strep throat at drill. And a few of my students have been sick enough to end up in the doctor's office--a couple twice already! So maybe I had a bug. I'm glad it wasn't worse than it was! Although I did feel like the world was ending.

All right. I'm going to enjoy my coffee, contemplate my day, and then run, teach, grade, and then consider cleaning and putting things away when I get home, since I'm not going to kill myself grading this afternoon. I feel like I need the house clean so that I can focus on writing that little article that's due in a week.

Sunday, June 24, 2012


Taking Friday off and going to the movies after class was a great idea. Sure, I was exhausted Friday, and probably less than enthusiastic about going to the movies than I normally am (considering I had been waiting for months for this!--it was great, btw. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Really well done I thought). But, I came home, caught up on some DVRd shows, had some leftovers, lounged, and went to bed early. Glorious. I woke up yesterday feeling well rested for the first time in a looooooooong time. I worked out for the first time since Tuesday and was not wiped out by it. Helped a friend with his moving (barely. I'm a loser. Since I hadn't been feeling well all week, I gave myself permission to take my time getting going yesterday. And I really wanted to run. By the time I got there, there was little left for me to help with). Anyway, picked up a few things at the grocery, came home, vegged some more, and then opened a bottle of wine, straightened up the kitchen then started working on dinner and prepping tonight's meal. And I got a pretty good night's sleep last night, too. I'll work out here in a little bit, go the g'parents', hope that the husband gets home at a decent hour this afternoon, and I'll read what I'm teaching tomorrow before bed. I've taught it twice already, so it's not anything major. And tomorrow I'll start working on those essays.

What a difference two nights of sleep make. Friday night, because I had pain in my neck, I thought for sure, with the exhaustion and all that I must have mono. When I woke up feeling rested yesterday morning, I figured that's probably not the case.

I hope I'm on the upswing here. Only 1.5 weeks of class left to go and an article due next Monday. I can do this.

Friday, June 22, 2012


I feel like I may indeed be close to the point of exhaustion. Clearly I think if I had full on actual like clinical exhaustion, I wouldn't be able to get out of bed. But I'm not there yet. Even though I had been diligent about grading essays the day they came in, that is like finishing them within hours of collecting them, I am going to take a break today. What this means then is that I'll end up, the last week of classes then probably collecting essays on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, but I'm willing to put that off for the sake of my sanity and health right now.

Part of the problem is that I'm not sleeping well at all. And that's just exacerbating the problem. My body is reacting to the stress right now in very weird ways. No cause for alarm, really. Everything that might be classified as out of the ordinary has one common explanation--exhaustion. Plus add this bout of anxiety and depression, and voila! There you go. And honestly, even though I've been blowing off academic and teaching work in the afternoons when I get home, when I get home, I end up spending an hour cleaning the kitchen or grocery shopping or cooking or something, so when I come home, I don't always rest like I should. What I need to do is just take a long nap. But since I haven't been sleeping well, I haven't been letting myself take naps during the afternoon because I don't want it to further disrupt sleep. But for the remainder of the quarter, I'm not going to be so stingy. And I'm just taking this weekend off.

If I get a good night's sleep tonight and feel good and rested in the morning (which may or may not be possible) then I'd like to get up, work out in the morning (I haven't been able to work out, even slightly since Tuesday), like maybe just a slow 30 minute run to do something, and then grade for an hour--just so I'm not so totally overwhelmed on Monday. Then I'd like to repeat on Sunday before getting to the g'parents' house. While I should just take the whole weekend off to rest/not grade, I know if I have the entire stack waiting on Monday, then I'm going to feel overwhelmed coming into the week, and the drafts I pick up Thursday *have* to be done by Thursday afternoon because they need to be able to start working on the final drafts in class on Friday morning.

Sheesh. This exhaustion is partly my fault. I set a crazy ass pace for this course. No wonder I'm feeling like death on a cracker my friends. But, what am I supposed to do? four essays in six weeks with revision opportunities is a lot.

And I can tell you, what will probably happen is that I will grade some this afternoon because I don't want the drafts hanging over my head. But I really want to go to the movies first this afternoon, like right after class is over. And I will. I'm dying to see Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter as you may or may not know that I'm a HUGE fan of the book and of Seth Grahame-Smith. I waited to see Prometheus for when the husband had about 36 hours of leave time, but I told him I was going to AL:VH without him because I can't wait another week or so to see it. I *MUST* see it today friends. And while I should come home from class and nap rather than going to the movies, I'm going to go to the movies.

And probably what's going to happen, because the thought of those essays being around all weekend, is that as soon as I take the dogs out, I'm going to start working on them. I think what I needed to do was give myself permission not to do them to make myself feel better, and in doing so, I'm probably going to just bust right though them. I just don't want to have to think about them all weekend. And if I'm up and not able to work out, then I should see how many drafts I can get through before class starts. I don't really want to, but I may as well.

ETA: You know what? Now that I'm showered and have had breakfast, I feel like I'm thinking more clearly. I am going to take the day off. I thought I'd sit and grade for 70 minutes or so, teach, go to the movies, come home and grade maybe for an hour and then call it a night. But no. I'm helping a friend move tomorrow and I should clean the house tomorrow too since I didn't the last time the husband had a brief amount of time off. So no. Aside from teaching, I'm taking the day off. So I'm going to read for fun!! right now and enjoy my coffee before it's time to go teach. I have to say, I already feel a little bit better. And we're watching a movie in class today, too, so it's low impact all around. I am going to relax.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Summer Blues

Argh! I am so incredibly freaking depressed right now! And it's frustrating and a giant pain in the ass folks. It is seriously like a constant freaking struggle every single damn day. It's exhausting and annoying. I'm doing everything I should be doing. I am going to bed at a decent hour. I'm getting 7-9 hours of sleep a night. I'm cooking super healthy meals at least 5 times a week (triple that to include breakfast and lunch), and while my workouts have been slipping because I'm so freaking ass depressed, I'm still getting at least four workouts in a week even though some mornings I wake up and I want to cry. AND I'm taking my meds again! I'm keeping up very admirably I might say with the class--like I grade drafts or comment on drafts the moment I pick them up so there is same day delivery because they need to get them back so they have time to revise if they want and so I don't have a gazillion drafts to grade the last week of classes. I'm doing everything right! And yet, I've been watching Scrubs and Friends for the last two weeks weeping during every.single.episode. That's just like sadness wrapped in shame right there friends.

Generally, I'd be freaking out. Especially since I have oh a little article due on July 1st. The one I had been struggling with. Yeah, I haven't touched it since classes started. I guess that needs to be a priority this weekend and next week. It needs to be priority at this moment, but I don't have the energy.

I am one hundred million percent just burned out. Just totally and completely burned the fuck out right now. I mean, I am totally and completely fried. I never ever ever want to *have* to or *need* to teach over the summer again. I think it might be different if this were like gravy, like extra, like we were going to use the money for vacation or to pay off a credit card or something. But that fact that we need this to pay our regular bills aggravates and depresses me. Yes, I'm thankful that I get summer teaching. But no, I don't want to do it.

The thing that's the most frustrating is that there are things that I want to do right now, things I feel like working on, but I'm actually pretty much incapacitated. Like it feels like a physical barrier actively pushing me down that I can't quite overcome to get done what needs to get done. Like yesterday I finally went to the grocery. I was so overwhelmed with grocery shopping that I nearly broke down in the store.

I need this quarter to be over. Pronto. I'm glad I had enough foresight to make the end of the quarter as easy for me as possible while still making sure that the students learn what they need to. And that's the thing--they're a good class. Better than I expected for the summer quarter. And I feel bad that I don't have more energy to give to them. I feel like I should reprepping all the stuff I just taught a few weeks ago in the Spring (which is ridiculous, and I chose a lot of the stuff I did in the spring to make it easier on me). I haven't felt this way in a while. Yeah, I was totally frustrated with last quarter's 101 class, like totally resentful of their attitude because it really was just a shitty class and I know that now because I'm doing all the same things that I did last quarter, I'm actually depressed this quarter, and I have better student engagement, better productivity during group work, and an overall better attitude about the class. What's changed? Not my teaching style, but the students. Anyway, I don't think that they think they deserve more at least. But I haven't felt like this in a while. This is more like the dissertation writing funk I was in. It's different than how I felt in Fancy Town--there I was just miserable on top of depressed and I didn't give a shit about being productive or really cared toward the end of the year last year about anything really (except my friends). But during the dissertation you know, I just felt incapacitated. I wanted to work but physically couldn't. And that's how I feel now.

Sure, just like then if I had spend the time working that I have on this blog post then I might have accomplished something this morning, but that's different. I am trying to accomplish something with this post--psyching myself up to face the day.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


Holy stormy weather Batman! It's rough out there!

Well, not too much to report on this home front but storms. Yesterday I was laid up for all the day with some back problems, so I called in sick. I felt immediately guilty for doing so, which made my back hurt even more, and I've narrowed the problem down to my having been slumped over the computer at the kitchen table. So I finally got off my keester yesterday and straightened up the office enough so that I can work in here now, which will be important for Friday and for Monday because I have drafts of papers coming in on both of those days. My better chair is in here with a bigger screen for the computer; it's higher up. It's just a more sound working environment all together.

But here's some craziness that's been going on in my neck of the woods: there have been a string of escalating home invasions in the last week! Three in one week is a whole helluva lot around here. People are freaked out. Apparently it started way far north, like an hour from here, and seems to be moving progressively south. What seems to have been the first was just a break in in broad daylight, the friend of a friend, sort of in my neck of the woods, while the person was at work at least. Then it moved south about 5 miles to a break-in and rape. Then it escalated another mile south to break-in and murder! I am completely freaked the fuck out, especially since the husband is gone for this two week AT ( annual training) and then he has a school that he's going to after that. I wasn't even this scared when I lived in Fancy Town!

Here's the only comfort I have--the places that have been robbed appear to be homes that are not in neighborhoods. It gets rural pretty quick around here, so I think these places have been places that have lots of tree cover and are off the street a little bit. And they're not tweekers, because they are taking the valuables not just things for quick cash (like some other break-ins in an older neighborhood last year--but those guys were caught). And the robberies seem to be moving south because there is more development on this side of the highway.

The other two people who were robbed lived alone, no pets, off the beaten path somewhat. The murdered woman was 63 and not in good health. And the police do believe it was murder, not that she died and then someone robbed her.

I'm hoping that since our dogs sound much bigger than they are (you can hear them in the street when they are barking inside), and by keeping the blinds somewhat closed, you can't tell how big or small they actually are, I'm hoping the dogs and exterior lights will be enough of a deterrent. Also I'm hoping that I'm in a neighborhood with occasion police patrol helps, too. To be safe though, at night, I have all the doors barricaded with chairs: the front door with a heavy armchair, the side door has a kitchen table chair wedged underneath it, and fortunately, the back porch has so much crap on it that it's like an obstacle course back there anyway, so if someone tried that door, there'd be a ruckus (and that light is off for that reason--so no one can see the crap on the porch), but there's also a chair in front of that door, too. If the robberies and other horrible things move back up north and start taking place in neighborhoods, I'm going to talk to the landlord about putting in a security system. I'm hoping, too, that the robbers are assuming that a neighborhood filled with college students isn't going to offer a lot of bounty either. Not if they're stealing jewelry and valuables. It seems like they are moderate risk takers looking to make more of a score than a debit card and a playstation or so. Or that's my assessment based on my t.v. watching that I'm telling myself in order to be able to get some sleep and not live in a state of panic.

I keep my bedroom door locked and the land line charged and by my bed. At this point, I'm not sure what else I can do to be safe.

So yeah. Nice, huh? I guess I'll have the husband show me how to use the shotgun when he comes back for his day of leave this weekend.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Folks! This summer teaching is wearing me the eff out! And it's only been one week! Egads y'all! The pace I set for this class is ridiculous, and I have no one to blame but myself, but $hit, what can one do when you've got to get them to write a certain number of pages and cover a certain amount of material in six weeks?? I have a couple of "breaks" written into the schedule where we'll be watching a tv show or a movie (all of which are related to the readings and their paper topics--it's only really a partially free day for me--we still have to talk about all of this stuff, but it's better than standing up there for an hour talking). Plus, I'm plagued by fantasies of what life would be like if the husband gets one of the jobs he applied for (actually, it would secure his Army career which has some cons but lots of pros actually, but really, the quickest way to make sure he doesn't get the job is to fantasize about life if he did. Stupid Murphy and his stupid laws. So now I am trying really hard to envision then how much life is going to suck until he graduates four years from now).

I'm also avoiding this pedagogy piece that I have to write by the first. It'll get done, but damn, yo, I don't know how or what to do with it. I have no sense of the article, and it's going to require more energy than I had originally thought (which is why I agreed to write it), but it's good for me anyway to write it because that will get me closer to my tenure requirements.

But here's the real problem. I'm obsessed now with this. Like seriously. As soon as I finish one book, I immediately buy another. Mostly it's because I feel freaking great (and really have for the last two months). I'm letting this be my avoidance for the thing I don't want to really write, but I cannot, I mean, I absolutely cannot start on the other two articles until this one is done. And therein lies the other problem. The two things I'm really focused on (one is the whole food thing; the other my pop culture obsession and desire to immerse myself immediately into my "new" field) is hindering the thought process for the pedagogy piece, which is important and deals with teaching in the "new" field, but I'm blocked by it. So the food obsession is my way of sort of avoiding the work for that.

I'm just a total mess right now. And the state of the house reflects that hot mess as well. Maybe rather than working on things for an hour around here, maybe I do need just a marathon day or two of getting things straightened. Part of the problem is that the office is a holy mess. I can't even get to my desk. So maybe that's what I do when I come home from class tomorrow. I eat and then tackle that office for once and for all. The husband is gone for the time being so having things spill into the hallway tomorrow afternoon isn't going to bother him. He's not working in the office currently since he's gone, so really, if I'm going to tackle the office, now's the time to do it (and I'm feeling all motivated right now, but I'm going to the g'parents' soon). Although that doesn't mean I can't start with the office now. I may go ahead and do that for the next hour.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Summer Work

Monday was a total bust of a day. The husband and I were both totally exhausted. I laid around and read basically all day after I came home from work. And we ate dinner ridiculously early and watched Alien on blu-ray. Yesterday I met a friend for lunch that turned into an all afternoon affair, which was quite lovely, but not good for work. So I went home and read. So much so far this week for my "schedule" of writing and cleaning.

Today, while my students were writing, I decided to write, too. This shorter article that I need to write? It became very clear to me today as I was writing with my students why I've not yet tackled it even though it's only a 2000-3000 word article. I'm not sure if I can write even 2000 words on this issue! Sigh. It has to be done though. I just have to go back through the journal and see how others have addressed the topic and consider that I may need to work on this more than 15 minutes a day if I'm going to get this done in any kind of time. Sigh. It's discouraging, really. But I *need* to write this article first and finish it by July 1 at the latest. My goal of June 15th I don't think is going to happen. But perhaps when my students have in class writing time, I too can be writing with them. Sheesh. This is seriously one of the hardest things I've had to write! I have total writer's block and I am completely stumped. Perhaps with just some consistent butt in seat writing I can pull something out.

So there we go. I got my 15 minutes of writing in at least today. And at some point I will clean the kitchen and kitchen table and let that be my cleaning for the day. Since I already worked out, I will have met my daily goals then once I clean. I think. I should be reading toward something, but I'm going to rec read instead.

I'm also trying to use my office hours for prep work and as much as possible (obviously not right now as I'm blogging, but I've got things under control for the rest of the week). Since it's only one class, and I don't have students coming to see me yet or needing to see me yet, I can make use of the office hours. Because even though I like this class so far, it's summer and I have a $hit ton of stuff that I *need* to get done this summer. This is a crucial summer in making sure that I stay on track for what needs to be done for tenure. I am very unwilling to be one of those last minute scramblers to get everything together full of anxiety in about 3-4 years. I'm rocking a good pace here. I'd like to keep that up. I don't want to lose my momentum. There will be time to breathe later. Since no one who has gone up for tenure here in the last two years in this department has actually gotten tenure, I'd like to make sure that I have more than the minimum required and that I am not coming down to the wire. I think next summer we're going to be thinking about buying a house and I'd like to have stuff in the pipeline so that way if summer is blown house hunting and moving I'm not in dire straights with regards to my scholarship. And right now people have some interest in what I'm doing, so I need to not let those opportunities pass me by.

It's weird though isn't it that I feel I need to justify publicly on my blog being protective of my time. That it somehow sounds like I'm shafting my students if I'm trying to get as much prep work in during my office hours when students aren't here to minimize my work outside of my office. Why does that sound awful? I think it makes me sounds like I'm only trying to do the bare minimum to get through this summer class, but I don't think that's fair. I'd like to think that what I'm doing is trying to get through the next six weeks in the most efficient way that benefits both me and my students and keeps me healthy and productive.

So that's where I am. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

I know I posted the other day about how I was feeling energized by this new crop of student for the summer quarter, but today is Monday, I need to spend the morning prepping, I have a belly ache, and the reality has set in that this is my life for the next six weeks.

I feel less than motivated. I'll be fine later, but I just realized at this moment (even though I taught Friday) that I'm teaching every day for the next six weeks.


I wish I were already on my summer vacation.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Oh Sunday...

Oy. Even though I posted yesterday about how I was actually jazzed up about the summer quarter and the fresh new crop of froshes for this particular class, it's Sunday, and I don't wanna do any work. I will later, but not right now.

Last night we went to a birthday party for a three year old. I have no idea if she like the gift we gave her. I'm not good at picking out birthday presents for kids. Anyway, we were not expecting there to be food beyond hors d'oevres (sp?) and the like so we got stuff for dinner. Holy Moly! The most enormous beef kabobs I'd ever seen were served! Wow! And this amazing wine punch! And curry that was out of this world! So we were like "sweet! tonight's dinner will become tomorrow's and we just pushed the food budget a little further here!" And then.... we got invited to a friend's for a little early Sunday evening grilling for tonight! Oh happy day! Food budget gets stretched even further! So now it looks like I won't have to go back to the grocery until maybe next Sunday or Monday! Yay! Because in spite of the fact that I just ordered some shorts, we are trying to be frugal so we can survive the summer. To be fair, they were shorts that I had my eye on, I need another pair of good shorts, and they were 50% off! And I did put back all the other things I had in my cart and bought only the shorts. And got the cheapest shipping possible.

I think I have gotten our grocery spending down to about $100/wk which means that the husband's GI Bill for one month should last about two. And while he's at drill, I can save even more $ on the food budget.

My plans for sleeping in this morning were thwarted once again by the Divine Miss T's "I need to go pee" pacing. But oh well. I think I got a good 8 hours anyway, so it's fine.

I've got work to do today, but I refuse to do it until I've had my coffee and do some pleasure reading and work out.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Mapping out some summer work plans

I need to tinker around with the blog format a little bit more here so I can get my summer to do list up on the side bar somehow/somewhere. But I am too lazy this morning to do that. And I feel like doing a little bit of recreational reading this morning also before I work out.

I had a lot of stuff that I was hoping to accomplish this weekend, but truth be told, I am wiped out from our trip. We got back into Home City from Conference City at about 7:40 pm on Wednesday, a day that started at about 6 am for me. Then we had to pack up all our stuff from Home City. We left Home City to return to Big Little Town on Thursday, another ten hour trip. Yesterday, the husband had to get up bright and early to get to work (yay! his unit is paying him to come into the office and do stuff for them before drill!) and then I had to go teach. Ugh. I discovered yesterday morning that I'm a in computer lab. I don't much like that set up at all. On a positive note, the kids in the class seem to be a better group than what I had last quarter. Rather than feeling beat down and depressed about teaching comp, I'm actually looking forward to this summer quarter with this group. After yesterday, I'm feeling re-energized about 101. And I was exhausted. So yay for small miracles.

I had really wanted to sleep in this morning, but I could hear the Divine Miss T pacing the floor because she had to pee. No sleeping in for me.

This summer I am going to attempt to do what I've never been able to accomplish over the summer break--I am going to be productive! I am going to map out a schedule for the summer and deadlines and goals and the like. And I'm going to be smart about it. I'm going to allow for free days, days I don't want to work and want to veg, and "off days," just like a work out program sort of. Generally I pack my schedules so tight that I can't follow them because they are so strict.

The July and August schedule will look much different from the June schedule because I'm teaching now and not then.

But here's the general plan:
  • a.m. workouts--which, yes, I am still loving working out in the morning, and now I don't have to be on campus for a full 45 minutes later than what I was used to on my late day and almost 2 hours later than my early days, so this is good. Especially since it's getting to be super hot. I will be able to work out in the morning before going to campus. Yes!
  • teach.
  • lunch during office hours (I'm usually famished after teaching).
  • For the next two weeks at least, M-Th write for 15-30 minutes a day for small article due no later than July 1. (I'm actually shooting for June 15th, because I'd like to be done with it--this is the one I wanted to finish in April. >:-/)
  • Friday afternoons are devoted to grading as for the next five weeks I will be picking up drafts every Friday and I want to get them back to the students before the weekend so they have time to figure out what they need to do.
  • For the next two weeks as well, I'd like to spend one hour, M-Th, cleaning out the office and the guest room--decluttering, organizing, making donation piles, going through clothes, putting the last straggler of the winter clothes away even though it hasn't been winter here since February, etc. I think if I try to do a marathon session in these rooms, I'll get three hours in and quit for months. About an hour is my limit. I'm going to need my writing space cleared out by July so that when it comes time to work on the big articles, I have space. 
  • Use Sat/Sun morning to read and prep for the week. I'm going to save that this week for tomorrow. :)
For the next two weeks anyway, it  will give me time in the afternoons to relax, cook, keep things straightened and clean and what not. I'll only have myself and the dogs to worry about as the husband leaves for his two week annual training next weekend.

I'm going to give this a shot for two weeks and see what happens. Right now though, I'm going to have another cup of coffee and recreational read for a little while before I really need to actually start my day.