Oh, Sweetland.

I won’t even lie, I’m not sure what to write about here.

I could write about taking English 225 as a senior and being bored out of my mind.

I could write about how I’m terrified to graduate because I have no idea where I will be in 8 months.

I could write about some of the cool classes I’m enrolled in this semester and the ridiculous sleeping habits they’re causing me.

However, I instead will write about Sweetland. This post is long over due and I feel that I should talk about how great Sweetland really is.

This summer, I had the privilege working with Naomi Silver, Christine Modey, Jennifer Metsker and Shelley Manis on the rubric for our final eportfolio for the Writing Minor. *Before I continue, please do not hate me if you score poorly on your eportfolio next semester.* This opportunity gave me the chance to not only work with 4 smart and funny women but I also had the chance to see other aspects of writing in academia.

First off, I spent time getting to know the faculty. It was fun to spend time with professors who have accomplished so much and to not be seen as a student. Technically I still was but they weren’t grading or evaluating me and really appreciated the opinions I had to offer, especially about language and style used for the rubric.

It was also awesome to get to see some of the behind-the-scenes activities at Sweetland, or the University in general. Learning more about what is required from my professors gave me a whole new appreciation for them.

However I will say the coolest part was spending time working on a project related to writing without having to do much writing at all. I did put together and edit an annotated bibliography for our research, but other than that most of the work we did was reading and putting ideas together. I love writing and I hope at some point I can just write for a living- but this gave me a new perspective on other jobs and needs in the writing field.

Please do not come after me if you hate the requirements for the eportfolio. I tried to have the Sweetland staff see things from a student’s perspective. I think they took my opinion into consideration several times, which was actually a really cool feeling. I’m sure there’s a better word I could use than “cool” but that’s really how it made me feel.

I guess the point of this post is just to say that when we’re all taking the capstone course and more focused on important life decisions in regards to graduating and finding jobs or going to graduate school, we should all realize what awesome company we are in. Take advantage of the peer tutors if you need too. Go talk to your writing professor about new writing opportunities coming up in the workplace. Actually do that reading and participate in a discussion about writing, which we all know won’t be happening for most of us after school. Use Sweetland and these amazing professors we have working here for us. They have a lot to offer that I think we often tend to forget.

Plus, I think they’re pretty cool, too! 🙂

Independent Study

Seeing as all of you in some way enjoy writing, I would like to share my news:

I finally have a confirmed sponsor for an independent study project in the History department next year! I found this out yesterday and I have been trying to find my outlet to share the news, and it came to me that I should put it out here. I will be working with professor Anne Berg, an amazing woman from Germany who specializes in the study of Nazism, especially through film. I will be taking her class and creating an IS research project that goes along with it in some way.

I think I might also be excited because I’m going to receive 4 credits for this without having to go to class. I realize I will have to meet with Professor Berg on a regular basis and have a large amount of reading to do, but it will be something that I am very interested in and much better than just going to lecture and sitting down for 4 hours a week.

I am mostly excited though to get the chance to once again research on and write about a topic that I have been passionate about since I was young girl and inspired by my American Girl Doll, Molly.

No Writing…?

I’m procrastinating at the ugli right now and it wasn’t until this moment that I realized I didn’t have that much to do. With midterms coming up, one would think that I would be swamped, but right now I’m at the “calm before the storm” part of the semester. Which is really nice, but I do feel like I should be doing something.  I was thinking about  my assignments for classes and what not and I do not have to turn in anything this week- no research paper, no reading response, no academic essay, discussion questions- NOTHING. I still have to do a lot of reading and whatnot, but I have nothing to actually turn in. This calls for a celebration, also known as I’m leaving the library at 4 on a Sunday! 🙂

Writing Under Pressure

Yesterday I had to write an 8 page paper.  I had cleared my schedule and had the whole evening free to do so from 6:30 onward. I assumed it would take me all night.  Yet, I found myself done in less than two hours. Part of this was due to the fact that I know we get to rewrite the paper and get a better score after we see the professor’s comments. Part of this was because I really just didn’t care. However, most of it was because I realized that I write so much faster under pressure.

I know that procrastination is the way of life for college students… there always seems to be something better going on then what you need to be doing.  Some people then get stressed; I luckily don’t stress much. When I know I only have a certain amount of time to write the paper, I shut off the outside world and crank out the paper. Granted, I usually have some prewriting done first, but this is usually how I write my papers- one sitting. BOOM. It’s done.  Maybe this isn’t the best way to do something like this, but I feel it’s pretty common.

Almost done!

My mediation project has been done since Friday. It’s now Sunday afternoon and I have yet to turn it in. And I’m sure I won’t turn it in until tomorrow evening, probably close to 11:55 PM. Why? I really have no idea. It’s done, and I should just get it out of the way.  But part of me needs to hold onto it until as long as possible because it allows me the chance to edit it one more time, to fix one little thing, etc.  I don’t know why I feel this way. I have a really hard time turning projects in early. Even if it’s done.  I feel like I haven’t fulfilled my full potential if I turn it in early. Clearly I have issues, right?

But anyway, by tomorrow night, we will all have turned in our repurposed paper and remediated project. Which means that really, the only thing left is the website! Finally!

New Media.. no thanks.

I don’t know what to blog about as the semester is coming to a close, so I’ll just add some info about the in class essay we did today.

I hate new media/technology. I mean, sure, I use it. But that’s because society forces me too. Do I use Facebook? Twitter? Yes because I want to stay connected with my friends and social events. Do I blog? Yes, for this and other classes/clubs. Do I send emails constantly? How could I not? Do I shop online? Sometimes because it’s the only way I can find weird, obscure things.  Do I read newspapers online? Some I have too because they are no longer in print.

But I hate it. I wouldn’t use a cell phone if everyone else did. I wouldn’t use this blog if it wasn’t for a grade, and I wouldn’t constantly be on facebook if my friends weren’t trying to tell me things.  I prefer handwriting things over typing, reading things instead of skimming on a website. The internet is too distracting to me. I know it offers all these wonderful things, but honestly, I could do without it.

I realize a lot of good has come from all the technology and new media that has been established over the past ten or so years. But I’m tired of it.  And the sad thing is is that in my lifetime, it’s only going to become ever more present in my daily life.  This is why I try to hold onto things that matter to me, such as writing letters.  And what scares me is that I’m going to get so behind in new media since I dislike it so much that one day for my job I won’t be able to figure things out because I’ve been so distant from it.

Changed my mind… again.

So, perhaps Naomi noticed in class, I changed my idea for my eportfolio for maybe the bajillionth time.  I’ve always wanted to actually be able to use my portfolio for things outside of this class once WRIT 200 is done, so I wanted to put a little bit of work into to actually making it more about me and my personality instead of just focused on this class.  I had an idea about using a map and tagging my pieces to the different parts of the world that I’ve written about/in. But, seeing as I’ve never left the country, it just doesn’t quite seem like something that would  make very much sense to me.

So instead, I’ve decided to focus on the three things that have always been important to me and always will: laughing, love, and learning. I believe that with these three values, you can get through anything and live a very wholesome life. I know it might sound a little corny, but I personally think it’s true. It’s so important to love friends, family, even strangers. To help others out, and show them that other people actually care. I think that one should never stop learning, because once you stop learning, you stop living. It doesn’t have to be learning in a classroom, just learning about something, someone, some place. And, if you know me at all, you know that I laugh at everything.  Sometimes it might not be the most appropriate situation, but it’s how I handle almost everything.  Laughing makes me happy, and I hope it makes others feel more comfortable around me.  Laughing at yourself can make any situation better. And honestly, life isn’t that serious. I can start to get worked up over something, but then I just realize that I’m being ridiculous, and then out comes some sort of chuckle.

The three l’s… maybe you should give it a try. Really.

So with those three words, I’m going to classify my pieces. Laughing will be used for anything with a humorous tone, and editorial in a newspaper, a non-academic paper, etc. Love will be used for things that I am passionate about, or touching stories. And learning will be used for more serious pieces, including strictly academic papers.  I know it might seem a little unprofessional or not what most people are doing for this class, but I often consider myself to not really be like most people. And I’m not a serious person, so why make my portfolio serious?

Writing down the memories!

I have this thing about holidays- I always have to write them down. Always. I always have to write about who was there. What we ate. What we did. What we talked about.  I always take a group photo and include it. I know it might sound dumb, especially seeing as we eat the same thing on Thanksgiving every year, and my family is pretty small so it’s always the same people attending our gatherings. But there’s just something special about each holiday that passes that sets it apart from every other one.

I don’t know what it is, but there is something special about every time I get to spend a day with my family and celebrate being together.  And for as long as I’ll live, I’ll have this little booklet thing about all the holidays we spent together.  Just a way to feel close to them.  Just thought I’d share since this is a writing class, and I’m sure you all can appreciate, in some form or another, the way I choose to record my family memories.

Have a great Thanksgiving everyone!

 

In the picture directly below I am the baby to the left, being held by my mom.  While I clearly was not able to record this memory it makes me laugh to see my family in such a dated picture. I figured you would like it!

 

Also, here we are again, except with my sister and my youngest cousin, along with my one uncle and my aunt that were married after the first picture. See how our family dynamic changed? While I guess it’s not important, I like to remember these kinds of changes.

 

And one more thing- the clothes are pretty funny, aren’t they? Just think, in 20 or 30 years, we are going to look back on our family pictures now and wonder what we were thinking. 🙂