Spring Break commencing!

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There’s something nostalgic and endearing about moving back to the area you grew up in. I may have also stated it before, but if you’d told me I’d move back here in four years after graduating college, I would have argued with you. Yet, here I am and I’m enjoying the reprieve for the most part. Relocating takes some adjustment and I’m happy to see myself getting accustomed to the commute (an hour both ways) and having extra money (no utilities or rent!) I changed over my last account yesterday to my new address and I’m excited to be getting renters insurance refund AND money back from my car insurance. Since this town has more cows than people, it means costs in general are lower.

ffv (official artwork)

I’m also starting to pick up my hobbies again, after a bit of a hiatus due to the move and beginning a new life routine of sorts. I’m still playing Doctor Who Legacy (finally making more progress thanks to daily bonus’ on specific items) and last weekend I bought Final Fantasy V for my Ipad. I haven’t made a lot of progress on Final Fantasy V, but Doctor Who has been more of a go to since it’s a puzzler I can play while watching Torchwood or a movie. I haven’t picked up FTL: Faster Than Light in a while, but I think continuously playing it on break while packing burned me out on it a bit.

 

The nice thing about the coming week is that I’m off most of the week! This week is our spring break (though we have school tomorrow and Tuesday). I’m looking forward to relaxing, catching up with friends and getting a couple things knocked off my to do list. Maybe it’ll even warm up so I can wash and vacuum my car.

 

::Fun finds this week::

A friend mentioned the below video to me last night. A Whovian asked Christopher Eccleston to assist in his proposal to his girlfriend and he agreed. The video quality is low, but what an amazing way to ask!

 

Emerging into Spring

It was two weeks ago yesterday that I officially moved back to my hometown. I’m still getting into the grove of being back home and in ways, I’ve forgotten about my life in my old city (not the friends of course, whom I talk to almost daily). My hometown has a very different atmosphere being that there are more cows & chickens that people (compared to never seeing them unless you drove miles out of town), not having many stores and the highlight of social engagement requiring a drive into a nearby city 30 minutes or more away. I work in the city, but I often find myself meeting up with friends there or making solo trips to stores and venues. If someone told me 4 years ago when I graduated college I’d be happy to be back in the boonies, I wouldn’t believe them. Yet, here I am and I’m happy to be here for a while.

(photo taken last year)

Spring (despite us getting snow Friday) is starting and the weather couldn’t feel more invigorating. There are Crocus’ coming up in yards and I’ve seen a few marigolds on my daily walk on my grandmother’s road. This is my favorite time of year and for once, I feel that having a slower paced life is offering me the opportunity to appreciate it a bit more! What I’m really looking forward to is the Cherry Blossom Festival in D.C. in 3 weekends. I go there with a group of four other friends every year to the Matsuri festival and to view the trees. It’s one of the things I look forward to the most every year!

Goong

Yesterday was gorgeous and I pulled out a book to read. Way back when, I used to read Manga and Manwha, a hobby that I recently wanted to get back into. I picked up Goong using store credit from a bookstore Friday and plan on trading in and out manga for the time being. When I applied for my library card in the city I work in, I discovered I need to live in the area to use it. Alas, all those books are just out of my reach!

 

I terms of gaming, I’ve been playing Final Fantasy V and Doctor Who Legacy. Final Fantasy V is a game I picked up in high school, but didn’t get through, but since it’s on my Ipad (meaning I can play it while watching Netflix), I’ll get through it pretty quick. I got my aunt into Sherlock and recently started watching Torchwood. I really like Russell T. Davies writing/creative direction, science fiction and Captain Jack Harkness is one of my favorite Doctor Who companions, so Torchwood is right up my alley.

068 (more Cherry Trees from last year)

My temporary relocation stuff is almost complete and I have a graduate school meeting tomorrow. I’ll be starting my Masters in Special Education in Spring 2016, so all I need to finish up is the paperwork and save up the money. I still have my undergraduate debt to deal with, but my Masters will only run my around $14,000. By living with family, I’m able to pay off huge chunks of my student loans and save up for my masters degree. I am still waiting on getting my rent deposit and first paycheck from my new job, but those will come at the end of the month. Moving and getting a new job was a big decision, but as time goes on, I know I made the right move and couldn’t be happier!

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Have you had any big changes in your life lately?

Relocating: A week later

It’s hard to believe how much has transpired in the last week and a half. I moved away from the city I was living in for almost three years and left my job to move back home after getting a job offer. My new job is amazing and I’m excited for my future there.  A lot has happened and it’s amazing how less stressed I feel, how much more I can do and simply the fact I feel I can dream again.

 

Travel

This past weekend I took a trip to North Carolina to Wizard World Raleigh and met the wonderful David Tennant. He’s an amazing man and it was an honor to meet him!  I love to travel and having the money, energy and time to do so is amazing!

Displaying photo.JPG (not posting my actual photo, but it happened!)

My stress level

Before moving, my stress level (even before relocation stresses) was insanely high. I felt miserable and cranky pretty often, wanting nothing more than to usher everyone away. Now, my life’s pace has changed and I have hardly any stress. My anxiety is even low for once (I overthink and worry about everything).

 

Happiness

Winnie the Pooh

I can’t think of a time (other than vacations and outings with friends) where I’ve felt so on top of the world. I feel that I’m able to realize my dreams, be my true self and enjoy everyday to the fullest. It’s overwhelming actually! Oh and I have a TON of energy everyday. I never feel drained or feel I need to be alone all evening.

 

Money

For the first time in my life, I actually have money. Really, I feel ok with spending $3 on an iced coffee after work once or twice a week and it’s amazing. Since I’m not paying rent or utilities, I can concentrate on paying off student loans and by the end of next month another one will be gone. I do want to move by August, but until then I’ll be saving money and I’ll be getting closer to being debt free!

 

People

Zelda tissue box I made for a friend

While I miss my friends in my old city a lot, many of my friends are in this area. In fact, one of my closest friends lives down the road from me now! It’s beyond wonderful to stop by to visit friends and family during the week and weekend. Previously I would see some friends only 3 times a year and family every month or two. That’s not easy when you’re someone who needs to see people they care about.

 

Graduate School

Searching for my sole mate sign

For a while now I’ve been thinking about graduate school, but the local university wasn’t one I wanted to attend.  Now, I’m working near a university with a Masters program I really want.  With my Masters in Special Education, the world would really open up for me (for a reasonable cost of $14,000).  I still have my undergraduate loans, but with my new job I can save up and pay for classes out of pocket (with some grant help).  I have a meeting next week to enroll next spring and I can’t wait!

Snow can put a wrench in things or be a blessing in disguise

snow

It’s hard to not look at the snow falling heavily outside without feeling a little frustrated.  Teachers love snow, but every teacher I’ve talked to as had the same sentiments about it-“enough”.  Sadly, this storm is set to bring up to a foot in places, which puts a damper on plans anyone has.

 

This Saturday I’m due to move and on Monday I’m starting my new job.  Both of which are huge stressers and having window to contend with too is making matters a little trickier.  I still need to get my fingerpritning done, change my address at the Post Office and DMV, plus get more boxes to finish packing.  With the snow, it’s become an impossible feat, which adds to the accumulating stress.  It’ll get done, but it does mean the next three days will be a little more intensive.

Picture 019

Despite the big negatives to being stuck inside because of snow, there are positives.  I got to sit down and play more FTL: Faster Than Light (died at the last boss), I’ve made a lot of progress on packing what I can and with giving my townhouse a good, deep clean.  It’s amazing how much stuff you can accumulate and I’m happy to say that I’ve gotten rid of over 200 things!  I’m due to make a trip to the used book store and drop off around 50 books, so it’s nice to know there’s a lot of stuff I’ll no longer be lugging around.  Once I move again in a few months, I hope to get rid of even more stuff.

 

Tomorrow (provided the snow melts as expected), I have a few errands to run.  To motivate me, I’m hoping to stop by my new favorite cafe, make my list and then head out to tackle it all.  I’ll also need to return my router to comcast (good riddance) in addition to getting my address changed and my fingerprints done.  I was originally going to get together with a couple of friends and play board games, but due to the weather, we’ve had to cancel.  I was looking forward to getting together with close friends one last time before leaving, but it happens.  I know I’ll be back quite a bit to visit, so it’s just a ‘see you soon’ deal instead.

 

I’ll still in the weird limbo of leaving my job.  I miss my coworkers and students a lot already.  I couldn’t imagine a more wonderful group of people to work with and there are a lot of elements about my life here I’ll miss.  However, due to family reasons and being called elsewhere, it’s time to start the next chapter of my life.  Since I’ll be without internet for an undetermined amount of time, it’ll probably be a week before I post again.  At least I have FTL: Faster Than Light to keep me occupied without internet!

FTL - A Star Trek-like Roguelike that's, like, awesome!

A long overdue endorsement

stuff

It’s hard to believe that in less than a week I’ll be moved out and getting settled in my hometown.  It’s a strange feeling to move back to an area you spent most of your life looking forward to getting out of.  It’s only a temporary stay and it’ll probably wane on me that I’m in the middle of nowhere, but it’ll be wonderful to be around close friends and family for several months without having to drive 2+ hours to see them! Even once I move (May or June), I’ll be less than an hour away and living in an area that I’d consider getting a house in someday.

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Amidst packing and general moving duties, I’ve been spending extra time with friends in the area. One of my best friends, also a teacher, has been taking courses through the local university to get her Special Education license/endorsement.  The classes are very affordable and it’s online with no in person meetings.  It’s designed for teachers who have an endorsement in another area.  In our cases, we both work as Special Education teachers, but don’t have the endorsement–just the Prek-6 license.  After hearing her positive words about it and getting the same from other teachers, I’ve decided to sign up for the first of three classes I’ll need.  I’m in the process of giving them my transcripts and come May I’ll be in!

Give each student a designated space (accountability). ~ What a great way for students to reflect on the day and share what they've learned with each other. (Source: theteachertreasurey.com)

Teaching licenses in  the United States vary state to state and can get confusing.  I teach in a private school, so I don’t need an endorsement in Special Ed to teach it.  However, in public schools you need a provisional (temporary) license or license in the specialty to teach in.  The school I’ll be going to is like my current school, but they know I’m getting my endorsement in Special Education.  Thankfully, once you get your license, adding endorsements is much easier.  I had to take FIVE tests to get my Elementary Prek-6 license (around $120 a pop too).  This go around, I won’t need to take any.  Plus, a Special Education endorsement opens a lot of doors and gives me a pay boost.

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The next chapter in my life is starting and I’m excited for what the future holds.  I feel happier than I have been in years!  Friends and family nearby, a city that I love, things to do, classes to take, new opportunities to make a difference…it’s a lot to take in and it still doesn’t feel real!  This week will be an emotional one, but the direction I’m going in feels right.  Even though this chapter is closing, I’ll never forget it or the wonderful people who have journeyed with me and will continue to in the next chapter.  Perhaps Winnie the Pooh says it best;

 

Winnie the Pooh