Thursday, August 31, 2006
Monday, August 28, 2006
- Taught 8:00 a.m. class at CC
- Returned phone calls, responded to emails, comforted students, encouraged students, chastised a student... you know the drill for office hours.
- Drove to the University, planning to attend a meeting; alas, no parking spaces to be found; circled and circled, praying for somebody to leave; finally maneuvered into just-vacated parking space; whoever was there before me, I beg your forgiveness -- I was really, really late.
- Taught a class. What a great group of kids! We actually created blogs today! Yeah, for blogging!
- Sat through one of my own classes -- ah, those chairs are hard, especially when you had a long day and the class is dry, dry statistics.
- Ah, long day... better get some rest... another 8:00 a.m. class tomorrow...
Saturday, August 26, 2006
- Slept late -- oh, getting enough sleep can do wonders...
- Did not get ANY complaints or stupid requests from students -- we are finally settling down, yeah! :)
- Cautiously optimistic about one e-harmony match -- no real dates yet but have really enjoyed email exchanges so far; we seem to share many interests while adding nice differences to a mix; and he responds quickly -- in my "book," it means "truly cares."
- Look forward to spending next weekend with my family -- IF Ernesto blows through before and doesn't affect our plans! Go away, Ernesto!
- Well, work never ends; did accomplish quite a bit and feeling energized enough to work late tonight.
Friday, August 25, 2006
Thursday, August 24, 2006
- Spent over $1,000 on a new computer for my brother. His old laptop is OK but really not fast enough for aeronautical programs required for his courses. So we went shopping for an early Christmas present... and found a great laptop online... and bought it... and picked it up... and it came with a nice all-in-one machine and wireless router... and I got smothered by hugs... and now I will pay for 15 months -- interest free, at least! But my "twin" brother is happy because he will be able to do everything from his room instead of sitting in the lab.
- Well, he is not really my "twin" -- he is actually 12 years younger. Nevertheless, we could have been twins, easily; we look (well, he is much slimmer) and act alike; have similar interests; fight a lot and make up a lot. So Mom and Dad call us twins! :)
- I am not feeling well (yeah, being a girl has its ups and downs)
- Did not get much sleep (was working on something and did not want to stop, then had to pack for today's trip)
- My muscles are tense (did not work out for about a week)
- My students are settling down and doing reasonably well; many of them are doing exceptionally well, in fact!
- There are only three voice mail messages on my machine -- probably from a Chatty Student who starts calling at 6:00 a.m., calls every 30 minutes, and leaves a message every time. Hey, I only have to respond once! :)
- My Inbox does not have any new messages -- cleared all of them this morning.
- I am driving to the Flying University to see my brother and make sure he has everything for the next week when classes start there; also, we will attend a reception tonight and meet some of his professors.
- My new gadgets and books arrived yesterday!
- If I have time tonight, I will walk on the beach...
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Ms Alice, I noticed that I had receive zeros own some of my assignment that was due own the 21.The reason why I could not finish my assignmnt because my computer was struck by lightning that night and sleepy town college is the only way I can do my assignments.The reason I could not email you yesterday beacuse I work five days a week and I don't get home until the afternoon the.Several hours I dedicate to this class is on monday an tuesday those or my two off days. I am really trying to exits out this course this term and I am really trying to make good grades and maintain myself so will you please give me another chance to complete my assignments only this one chance please.
Monday, August 21, 2006
Sunday, August 20, 2006
Hello Ms. Alice,
How are you doing tonight?I'm pondering over what to write about,my mind seems like mush right now because i've been writing essays sinceFriday.That makes me tired and a little restless.I will need a good vacationafter first semester.Well can't write to long time to put kids to bed forschool tomorrow.Have a good night and we will chat again tomorrow.
And who said I want to chat with you??? Yeah, sounds mean, but I really don't want to be "friends" with my undergrads... Which raises another issue... Why is it OK to be friends at the graduate level? Because students are wiser, smarter, less likely to to do something stupid???
Anyway, here is another "gem."
Timna had a very interesting post about missing the interaction with "live" students when teaching online. I don't necessarily miss students but I find it very difficult to reach my students and usually schedule a midterm meeting on-campus (disguised as a "party" to get their attention). That's why I sent out an invitation last week, asking if they could attend a meeting so they could meet each other, talk to me about their concerns, discuss midterm grades, etc. I also mentioned providing "light refreshments."
Here is one response:
I've got the grill and the charcoal. All we need now is some meat, chips, fixin's, and something to wash it all down with. Non-alcoholic of course.
Sorry, barbecue does not qualify as "light refreshments."
Ugh, it's not even a Monday morning and I am already cranky.
Anyway, as we were talking, I suddenly sat up straight -- Alex is coming on Monday! Yeah, tomorrow! My refrigerator does not contain anything suitable for an 18-year-old. My house is a mess -- not like he cares but older sisters must set an example to younger brothers, especially those who will have to clean their dorm room. Right? Oh well, I will dust and vacuum tonight; then do some quick shopping after work tomorrow.
And my mini-crisis is nothing to Mom's neurosis! :) She is really losing it! Cries and laughs intermittently, checks and re-checks his "college stuff," worrying that she will forget something. Mom, he has a car and there is a huge mall within driving distance from the university! To passify her, I will go there on Friday and make sure he is all set (I live much closer than my parents so it's no big deal to me).
And why is Alex coming to my house on Monday? Who knows, maybe to escape Mom's tears and live one more day in peace before before being dunked into the murky waters of college life? Anyway, he will spend one day with me, drive to Daytona Beach on Tuesday afternoon, spend a night in the hotel, and be up bright and early for 8:00 a.m. freshman orientation. Classes don't start until the following Monday so next week will be a lot of boring but important stuff for him.
Well, my baby brother, good luck to you! And remember, your Big Sister is watching you (oh, yes -- he gave me all passwords), so don't you DARE to slack up on coursework and lose your scholarships! :) Yeah, I am as bad as Mom -- I just keep it cool! ;)
Saturday, August 19, 2006
All of these are legitimate companies that didn't spend quite enough
time considering how their online names might appear and be misread.
1. Who Represents is where you can find the name of
the agent that represents any celebrity. Their web site
2. Experts Exchange is a knowledge base where
programmers can exchange advice and views at:
3. Looking for a pen? Look no further than Pen
Island at: http://www.penisland.net
4. Need a therapist? Try Therapist Finder at:
5. There's the Italian Power Generator company:
6. And don't forget the Mole Station Native Nursery
in New South Wales: http://www.molestationnursery.com
7. If you're looking for IP computer software,
there's always: http://www.ipanywhere.com
8. The First Cumming Methodist Church web site is:
9. And the designers at Speed of Art await you at
their wacky web site: http://www.speedofart.com
Well, the trick worked -- I was asleep almost immediately. Alas, my cats (well, one of them belongs to me) woke me up at 6:00 a.m. -- I am not kidding, the clock said 6:00 a.m.!!! I was in a deep slumber when I heard this very strange noise and could not figure what it was, like crying or moaning or growling or something!!! Once the fog cleared, I saw my male cat standing next to the bedroom balcony door, growling at a stray cat on the other side. How did that thing climb to the second-floor balcony? Probably used the tree branches. Anyway, Robin was protecting his territory -- dare I say his owner? :)
After shooing both cats away, I went back to bed. It took awhile to fall asleep but I finally did, only to wake up crying. I was dreaming of being in a faculty meeting. My dept chair was chewing me out for not checking some kind of account and ridiculing me for not doing a good job. Ugh, what a stupid dream; have no idea what triggered it. My dept chair is a wonderful person who truly cares about us and wholeheartedly supports me in everything I do. And I am very secure about my job -- although I would love to do more research and teach less classes, I enjoy teaching and there is not doubt in my mind that I am doing a good job; they know I plan to leave once I finish my Ph.D. and always try to persuade me to stay. So this nightmare, like many I guess, is totally weird.
Anyway, I wiped the tears, laughed at myself, and went back to sleep. Did not wake up until 10:30 a.m., actually; probably would have slept longer if Mom did not call. That's another story. Mom, how many times did I tell you NOT to call me on Saturday mornings since it's the only day I can indulge in sleeping in???
Oh, well -- I am up, I am dressed, I am wide awake, and actually I am ready to accomplish some things today. Just a weird start, I guess.
Friday, August 18, 2006
- Met with one of my students this morning -- she missed online course orientation and needed instructions.
- Waited (in vain) for another student. Bye-bye, girl! Don't waltz into my office on Monday and expect to stay in this course. We submit first week attendance and students are dropped from our classes if they haven't attended even once (or logged in, in this case). She already rescheduled twice so my patience is over.
- Rushed to University City for a meeting (oooh, wouldn't have to rush if not for a student mentioned above).
- Had a great meeting -- interesting people, wonderful ideas... Look forward to the first day of classes!
- After a totally insane week, treated myself to a brief session of retail therapy. Tried on some shirts but didn't like them. Then found a great wool skirt. It's a little tight now but, hey, I am determined to lose all these ridiculous "extras." So it now hangs on my bedroom door as an incentive to watch my diet and exercise on a regular basis.
- Went out to eat with some friends -- salad for me, thank you very much. The skirt is watching me! :)
- Am I crazy to work on a Friday night? Shouldn't I be out, having fun? Alas, there is nothing to do in our Sleepy Town... and I have tons of things that really need my attention.
- Really miss having a boyfriend (and, no, at this point I don't miss my ex-boyfriend -- glad to be rid of that guy); it would be nice to hang out on Friday nights with somebody closer than "just friends." Oh, well, maybe one day...
- I will work tonight so I am tired enough to have a good night's sleep and sleep in tomorrow...
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Go here and look through random quotes until you find 5 that you think reflect who you are or what you believe.
The guy who takes a chance, who walks the line between the known and unknown, who is unafraid of failure, will succeed.
Be courteous, be obliging, but don't give yourself over to be melted down for the benefit of the tallow trade.
When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable. It is designed to make its own people comfortable.
It really doesn't matter if the person who hurt you deserves to be forgiven. Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself. You have things to do and you want to move on.
Real Live Preacher
Use what talents you possess: the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.
Henry Van Dyke
And, as a bonus, I could not resist including these two:
This one is very personal:
Sometimes it seems like God is difficult to find and impossibly far away. We get so caught up in our small daily duties and irritations that they become the only things that we can focus on. What we forget is that God's love and beauty are all around us, every day, if only we would take the time to look up and see them.
And this one I dedicate to you, my dear students:
Home computers are being called upon to perform many new functions, including the consumption of homework formerly eaten by the dog.
I have seen the movie before but look forward to "reliving" it since I just visited that part of Cameroon last month. The movie was filmed near Mount Cameroon, several hours from Douala, and we traveled the same roads.
It's a sad movie and raises so many questions...
Orangutan online dating service?
Woman suing college over wild boar attack? Hey, I am suing for gnat attack!
Men rob bank in biohazard suits?
- Emailed several agencies, requesting the quote.
- One agent replied and quoted $95 per person, roundtrip. OK, sounds reasonable -- even though definitely overpriced. Called this morning to confirm and was told that $95 is actually one-way, not roundtrip (as clearly stated on their yesterday's email -- aaaah, people, I am not stupid; I can read; you lied to me!!!)
- Called a friend whose mother still lives in that country... Huh, foreign nationals cannot buy tickets through a third party... I wonder why (not!)... US = $$$$$$
- Heard from two other agencies. One wanted $190 per person -- no way! That's a "train robbery"! :) Another wanted $65 per person, one way; OK -- let's do it! What a ripoff what can you do???
- Having learned my lesson yesterday (how rates can quickly "change"), called the girl immediately and said I will take those tickets. I have to give her credit -- she responded in about 10 minutes and provided a link for a credit card payment.
- But... and it's a HUGE but... Reservations are not valid until approved by the railroad people! So now we wait with our fingers crossed and hope they are gracious enough to sell us tickets.
- Oh, we are so spoiled here in the USA...
- Look forward to the trip!!! :)
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
- Taught another 8:00 a.m. class
- Returned to my office to find nine voice mail messages and, a few minutes, our secretary walked in with a message slip. Guess what, five of those messages were from the same student. First call: 7:30 a.m.!!! Last call -- taken by our secretary -- 9:30 a.m. She was outraged I wasn't answering my phone! Some common sense, please...
- Cruise tickets arrived -- yeah, we are leaving on Sept. 1 and coming back on Sept. 4!!!
- Finally found out when my colleague and I are presenting our paper at the international conference we are attending later this year -- now I can plan some activities! We would like to take an overnight train to another city so I think we will be able to get tickets now -- can you tell I am a business education instructor? Planning is very important! :) This conference will be so much fun -- there are lots of cool things to see and do. Of course, it's all about academic matters! ;)
- My air conditioner filters finally arrived. What a hassle! Because my system is very old (honestly, have no idea how old), it's almost impossible to find the correct size, so I had to order filters online.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Of course, they always have an excuse -- don't you dare to tell me I could actually make arrangements the week before! I have kids, I work, I attend church, I have other obligations! And I just sit there and think: "How about me? I don't live in my office, really! Or maybe I do?"
Sighing... sorry, guys... it's just frustrating to go over the same thing again, and again, and again... and making arrangements to see these students like 24/7...
Anyway, the hall is semi-quiet now, I responded to all messages, the phone does not ring as often, my desk is messy but I will deal with that later... For now, I am happily munching a tomato sandwich -- one of my friends brought some goodies from a local fresh food market and that reminded me to eat healthy. My refrigerator happened to contain tomatoes so that explains my lunch menu for today. I will need to stop by that market more often and get fresh produce -- they do offer the freshest things in town but I don't get to "visit" in-between semesters.
Monday, August 14, 2006
- 8:00 a.m. class (oh, I am so not a morning person; but this is the only way to get things done when you are both a grad student and full-time college instructor)
- office hours -- lots of last-minute advising, questions from zealous online students (yeah for that -- I hope their energy does not vanish soon), acting as a tour guide to the lost students (my office opens right into the busy hall and so I am fair game to anybody looking for a room, or professor, or knows what), phone calls, etc.
- drove to University City for a meeting with my major professor; we had a very, very productive meeting; I am so lucky to work with this person, especially given my limited (really, non-existent) research background
- drove back to Sleepy Town (an hour one way gets sooooooo boring)
- cleared my Inbox
- prepared for tomorrow's class (another 8:00 a.m. -- teaching 8:00 a.m. M-R; crazy, I know; home by 4:00 p.m. on most days, though)
- made a hotel reservation for a travel buddy (I am so mad at the faculty development seminar organizers -- they did not inform me of an upcoming mandatory meeting until today; and we were supposed to drive to the Capital City together; now I have to get there early and pretty much abandon her at the last moment, when making flight reservations may not be so easy; ugh, some advance planning would really help, people!!! at least I had enough reward points for a hotel so she can stay there while waiting for the return flight)
- now some tweaking for another course -- we are adding some cool things and removing bad stuff; I am so, so excited; have been waiting for these changes for two semesters now
- aaaaaah, a cup of coffee to stay awake and back to work...
- oh, I also washed my car (the neighbor's cat climbed with his dirty paws -- again!!!) and walked (fast) for 30 minutes on the treadmill (too tired to run tonight); these pounds accumulated so fast but getting rid of them seems like a losing battle... I will win, sooner or later!
Please tell me I am just cranky! Or is it a common problem???
Sunday, August 13, 2006
1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the next 4 sentences on your blog along with these instructions.
5. Don’t you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it! Just pick up whatever is closest.
6. Just do it, already!
OK, the first book is actually a textbook -- Business Mathematics by Brechner (I am grading homework). There is nothing interesting on page 123 -- just a list of formulas.
There is also a stack of journals and printouts I am perusing for a lit review -- none of them have 123 pages. Nothing else that qualifies as a book on my desk...
Let's try somewhere else... The first thing on my bookshelf is -- oh, I can't believe it! Charlotte Bronte's Villette!!! Oh, well, let's flip to page 123... find the fifth sentence... and here it is... Enjoy!
"However," I said to myself, "it is no affair of yours;" and turning from the face on which I had been unconsciously dwelling with a questioning gaze, I looked through the window which commanded the garden below. Dr. John, meantime, standing by the bed-side, was slowly drawing on his gloves and watching his little patient, as her eyes closed and her rosy lips parted in coming sleep. I waited till he should depart as usual, with a quick bow and scarce articulate "good night." Just as he took his hat, my eyes, fixed on the tall houses bounding the garden, saw the one lattice, already commemorated, cautiously open; forth from the aperture projected a hand and a white handkerchief; both waved.
Friday, August 11, 2006
Results of "The Test"
How neurotic are you?
Your score = 10
What does your score mean?
Congratulations, you've got a grip! According to your test score, you have no (or very few) obsessions and paranoid tendencies. You appear to be pretty chilled out and don't have many major hang-ups. In fact, you probably just don't understand people who fixate on odd things that you don't even notice, and may even want to tell them to stop being so darn paranoid! Actually, having a few small hang-ups is pretty normal; so don't judge others too harshly. Just thank your lucky stars that you're not stuck with any of these little obsessions, as they can be a real pain in the behind. Way to go!
Thursday, August 10, 2006
And it was actually an interesting and productive meeting. Our state leaders, in all their wisdom -- NOT, decided that all schools, including small community colleges, have to entice a certain percentage of students to participate in study abroad programs. I certainly agree that international experience is a huge plus to any program and usually has an amazing effect on that student's life. Alas, two things need to happen: (1) student's mentality has to change -- and it will take years and years of persistent efforts; and (2) funding has to increase.
Any ideas, suggestions?
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
Apparently, she was re-admitted (yeah, tuition money "rules") AND decided she will take my online course AGAIN. Unfortunately, I am not making this up -- weird students' radars somehow pick up my classes. And I thought that section was closed... it was closed, really, for the past three weeks... and somebody decides to drop today... and the idiot immediately signs up for it! Grrrrrrrrr!!! And, surprise -- NOT, she could not even remember her username and password. Why oh why do we allow students like this to pursue higher education?!?!
I am so tired -- physically and emotionally... Tomorrow I only have one meeting and then only two hours of registration. And I don't have to be on campus on Friday, meaning that I can actually prepare for the next week -- yeah, classes start next week... I can make it, I can make it, I can make it...
Monday, August 07, 2006
And my big mouth got me in trouble -- again! My colleague (who lives an hour away and so we rarely see each other) and I drove to lunch; to avoid traffic (yeah, we have traffic in a sleepy town -- believe it or not), I drove through a residential area and pointed out my house. She begged to see it one day and what did I do without thinking? Invited her and another girl to lunch tomorrow! Ah, not a good time... not enough time to cook and clean.
Oh, well... too late to change my mind... So I stopped by a store today and picked up some peppers and mushroms for a quick grilled salad. I already had some frozen stuffed salmon so I baked it tonight. Hmmm... Ended up with a gourmet lunch... :) As for cleaning... only had enough energy for a quick check... vacuuming and dusting would have been nice but I am totally exhausted.
Another looooooong day tomorrow... Meetings again 8:00 a.m. to probably 3:00 or 3:30... Seminar 4:00 to 6:00... Department get-together in a local restaurant until maybe 8:00? Last-minute touch ups on online courses and back to work bright and early on Wednesday for a full day registration and two sessions of online course orientation...
Yawning... better get some sleep... so much to do and I just can't catch up...
Sunday, August 06, 2006
My baby brother wants to be an airline pilot and so starts his first semester at the Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in a few weeks. This school is ridiculously expensive but he did get a sizable scholarship that will partially cover his tuition (if he maintains high GPA, of course). ERAU does have a stellar reputation in the flying community as well as many internship opportunities with major airlines, especially if he takes honor's courses (and the kid is smart enough, no doubt).
Until yesterday, though, he wanted to join NROTC. When he saw his schedule, he realized how insane that would be.
- Physical Training is scheduled M-F, 5:45 t0 7:45 a.m. He is NOT a morning person.
- On T and TH, he would have to attend NROTC training courses from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m.
- On TH night, there is an additional three-hour ROTC course.
- Of course, he also needs to take at least four program courses plus schedule flight hours; it all adds up to about 2o credit hours!
His days would be like 5:45 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.!!! Can you maintain a decent GPA and improve flying skills when you are THAT tired??? Of course, not!
Not to mention that physical strain is not a joke and can really mess up his career. All airline pilots must be able to secure a 1st class medical release twice a year and one torn ligament can get them in trouble.
Why NROTC? They keep promising to pay off some of his student loans. Yeah, sure!
Oh, I am soooooooooooo relieved he came to his senses and decided to concentrate on his dream!!! :) Hey, he even promised to take me for a ride soon. Now, am I crazy enough to go???
Saturday, August 05, 2006
Friday, August 04, 2006
A. bought a hammer
B. stuck her pride in a pocket and asked a male neighbor
C. used a heavy garlic press
What do you think? :)
Thursday, August 03, 2006
- 8:00 a.m. doctor's appointment
- dry cleaning
- human subjects approval form signature
- copies of all tests (we are required to file them at the end of each semester)
- Target -- picked up custom-made African postcards -- cool, envelopes included
- JC Penney -- yeah, bought a great picture and several smaller items; they look classy and I can't complain about 70%
- Staples -- ran out of printing paper and other small items; boring but necessary; hey, I did NOT wonder around looking at new gadgets! :)
It's 4:00 p.m. and I am totally exhausted; starving, too... Hmmm... What's for lunch? Shrimp Scampi! Yum! :)
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
- Final grades -- posted
- Syllabi -- two down, four to go
- Research proposal -- in progress
- Data coding -- almost done
It has been a crazy week so far -- final assignments coming in spurts, business writing seminar demanding my attention, and at least a million other things pulling me in different directions. On top of that, I developed an allergic reaction to the anti-malarial antibiotic that I have to take for four more weeks. Luckily, everything was fine in Africa; now the concentration is too high, I guess. Anyway, it's nothing dangerous but light rash covering my arms and chest is so annoying; it does not bother me but I can't wear sleeveless shirts (so people don't stare) and it's so hot. I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow and, hopefully, he will prescribe something that will make the rash go away. No way I will stop taking the medication -- malaria is not something to joke with; I would much rather deal with a mild rash.
Well, at least I don't have to be on campus; I am much more productive at my home office. Enough grumbling and feeling sorry for myself -- to the next task... :)