Wednesday, July 31, 2013

What's Happening Lately

I swear, this isn't why I haven't been posting as often.
 Sorry for the relative silence up on this here blog. Lots of reasons why, listed below:
  • It is currently what I refer to as "hunting season"; teaching jobs are only really available from April-August for the following school year, and if you don't get a job before the end of "hunting season" it's unlikely you will be getting a full-time job for the school year. (It can happen, but it's rare; one year I was still getting interviews for jobs in December!) If you do get a job once the school year has started, you hit the ground running which is even MORE stressful. Ugh. I had at least one interview/week for most of May and June, then it dried up, and now it's picking up again... but I still don't have a job. One more opportunity this week; fingers crossed! It's a stomach-turning situation. In my "career" thus far, I have had a total of 3 jobs in 5 years, in a distinct on-and-off pattern (1 year on, 1 year off), and I'm terrified that the pattern will continue. If I don't get a job this year, I'm strongly considering just dropping the profession for a while (maybe forever). Frankly, I'm tired of having my summer's ruined and the constant job/financial uncertainty. I love what I do and really felt I was meant to do it, but the circumstances surrounding it are less than desirable and it's been incredibly emotionally wearing over the years.
  • We've also been out of town! We took a lovely weekend jaunt to Ashland, Oregon for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. The Hubs was kind enough to suffer through copious amounts of window shopping in chichi boutique stores, two plays, and some lovely food (well, that part was less insufferable ;D). It was relaxing, gorgeous, and just what we needed! If you live on the west coast (or are willing to travel), here's what I recommend doing:
    • Go to the festival. Duh-doy. It's high-quality theater - great acting, great production values, great play selection. 
    • If you're the outdoorsy type, check out some of the nature options - the Rogue Valley and Mt. Ashland offer lots of hiking, whitewater rafting, and fishing options. There are several companies that offer a range of guided tours - if we'd done one, I'd have a recommendation, but we're not that outdoorsy (although The Hubs went rafting once and LOVED it, so we think next time we come up here we'll plan to do a 1/2 day tour and not see a show that night so we can recover). 
    • If you're the wine type, there are at least a half-dozen wineries offering tastings in a 20-mile radius. I am not able to drink a ton of wine anymore (stupid blood sugar issues!), so I passed up this opportunity. But if you like wine, take advantage!
    • Save your pennies and treat yo' self to a meal at Larks restaurant. It's not a cheap dinner, but it's SO WORTH IT. We've eaten there twice now, and it's some of the best freakin' food we've ever had. We've yet to try dessert there because we're always STUFFED by the time we are done! Which kind of sucks, because oh my GOSH they look scrumptious. The only downside is that they change the menu every so often, so what we had last year wasn't available anymore (but what we had this year was YUM, so no biggie). 
  • Still eating fairly healthy, but it's been tricky (esp. with vacation indulging, but I still managed to eat veggies with most meals). If I'm needing to indulge in something naughty-ish, I try to make up for it with huge vegetable servings. They knock each other out, right? ;D *sigh* I know they don't, but at least I'm getting in some vegetables with my horrific entree. Plus I can really feel the difference when I haven't eaten something good-for-me; I just feel BETTER with fruits, veggies, and whole foods in my system. Now I'm getting ready to add in the exercise element; my friend V and I are talking about being accountabilibuddies! I think it'll really help me, plus while she doesn't live SUPER-close by, she lives close enough that we could meet up 1-2 times a week for a workout "in the middle" of our two cities!
  • While I'm still unemployed (hopefully not for too terribly long), I'm trying to declutter our home. You know, finally get rid of stuff that I keep around for no particular reason because "I'll use it someday!" I'm a classic rat-packer, a.k.a. a hoarder who's self-aware. I'm tired of having too much stuff, so I'm in the process of being brutally honest with myself and tossing some of it. Well, tossing what's worthless and donating what's decent. I'm going to make our local St. Vincent De Paul very happy when I'm done, esp. for the plus-size shoppers! ;D
Let's end this with a gorgeous shot of downtown Ashland to lure you to check it out! I'm hoping to lure my BFF N there for a girl's trip next year - we're both theater/art nerds and I think she'd REALLY like it, plus we've NEVER taken a trip together! Friends for 14 years and it's never happened! A problem that must be remedied immediately. ;D Happy Wednesday!

Downtown, just past the OSF campus, majestic mountains in the background - just a typical view while walking around!

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