Jun. 12th, 2017 06:15 pm
silailo: (belldandy blue)
Suddenly I started hearing people in the apartment above me. Since I moved in, I haven't heard anything upstairs at all, making me wonder if the unit was empty. Once I thought I heard something, but I never heard anything again. It's summer, so a lot of students aren't here, and some units are empty right now. It pleased me to think it was empty because I am ridiculously sensitive to sound. If there's too much noise at night, I cannot sleep. Yet, strangely, I can have a fan on at night.

They sounded like young men. They were running and yelling and stomping around. It was really loud. I couldn't understand why they would be creating so much noise. Parties aren't allowed in these apartments, and it's Monday evening.

I thought I kept hearing people outside, too, so I went to look out the front living room window, and a bunch of sports-looking guys came down the stairs dressed in sports clothes and carrying duffle bags. Oh my gods. Please no. Are these people our new upstairs neighbors?! But there are only six rooms to a unit, and there were way more than six guys. Maybe the rest are in the unit next to it? That they'd be here might mean they're staying longer than what they can afford at a hotel, if they are in indeed staying here. I hope they have an adult figure to keep them in check (they looked like teenagers/early twenty-somethings to me).

I notified maintenance about a problem I believe might be electrical. I use a fan at night and noticed the airflow would weaken, and then grow strong again. It sort of annoyed me because of how quickly the flow and sound would drop, even keeping me awake (did I mention I was ridiculously sensitive to sound?). I've never seen this happen before, but I thought maybe something was wrong with my fan. I bought a new one, but the same thing happened. It didn't matter which outlet I used. I also noticed my desk lamp would grow brighter and then dim, almost like it was flickering. Everyone I told this story to said I should tell maintenance because it would be a serious issue. I bought a surge protector to be on the safe side.

Maintenance called in an electrician to see about it. Today I came back from work and noticed bits of what looked like dry wall on my floor, against the wall and right by my door. I looked around and couldn't figure out where it could've come from. The best clue is I have is the light switch just above the debris, but it doesn't look like it was removed and replaced.

hen I got an email saying the electrician checked the circuit panel but found nothing wrong. He said it may be normal usage since there are other rooms who use that same panel. Um, then how come I've never had it happen in hotels or even when I was at Bible school in a dorm?? What in the heck would make that happen? I mean, I guess there are a lot of refrigerators and dishwashers in this building, but really? Is it the A/C? Is this normal for apartments? I wouldn't know because this is my first time living in one!

I still don't know how the bits of drywall happened. I don't recall it being there when I moved in.

The grad school application is up.o_o I don't know if I'm ready for this.


May. 29th, 2017 05:10 pm
silailo: (adios)
I've worked on rewriting my statement of purpose for about three or four hours and all I've been able to churn out is 350 words. This is down from 1200 on my old one. That's after cutting out all the stuff about what I did in the past. I'm not sure what more I can do to increase the word count. I don't even know how long the statement needs to be. I won't know until I open the application, once it goes up.

And seriously, one of the examples I found online is provided by an actual university, so the person who wrote it was doing something right at least. Then there's a second one that's longer and they talk a lot about their past experiences, so why can't I? >:(

I don't want to walk away from this until I feel more satisfied about my progress. But I probably should. Ugh.
silailo: (adios)
Heard back from my second prof about my statement of purpose.

He said I shouldn't change anything.

OMG I want to scream.

I do agree with my first prof that I need to state more clearly my research ideas, goals, and be more "forward looking." I spent a lot of time talking about what I did for my past job(s) and volunteer work, because I saw this in a lot of other examples of statements I found. But apparently you're not supposed to do that. Maybe I'll cut back on the past stuff. I'll incorporate both profs' suggestions, how's that?

Also, I finally got my tentative selection notice for work. Once I fill the info they need, I should get my letter, though I don't know when. I'm not sure I'll be able to start work next week like I'd hoped, but oh well.
silailo: (she monster)
Okay, I was griping earlier because I heard back from one of my profs about my statement of purpose. Basically I spent too much time talking about my background rather than what I want to do in the future. I already knew a little that I wasn't supposed to do that, but I did it anyway. Also he wants me to know what sort of project I'd like to do and what skills I want to learn and whatnot. Ummmmm..... Well, I do have some slight ideas, buuuuuut it's not super clear. (Thankfully I may not have to do a thesis. A site report is an option)

I guess this is why some people take a break after undergrad and read whatever interests them in the field so they have a better idea of what they want to do and what research has already been done. But I didn't do any of that, sooooo........**

It's a good thing I'm talking to him about this because the other two profs haven't asked me these questions at all. They indicated that I didn't need to worry too much about my SOP because of the extremely high chance of me getting accepted anyway. But I do want to create a good SOP. I hold myself to a high standard, or at least a decent one.

**Okay, in some ways I have. I have read a bit about some work done on historic mining sites/communities, but not much.

silailo: (urd)
Second draft of my statement of purpose has been sent to two profs for critique. I'm still really uncertain about it. I'm afraid my focus might not be very clear in some places, or that I shouldn't have started off talking about my experiences growing up (I limited it to one short paragraph, because I've read admissions committees don't care to read "I've loved this ever since I was a child."). I tried to focus more on work and what I do/did there. I'm super worried my profs will come back and tell me how much more work it needs. I want to be done already.

Never did hear back from the apartments. I guess they just didn't have anyone in the office yesterday for some reason. I'm going to try to not worry about things because my start date is flexible, so if I need to push it back a day or two, I can.

Today should be nice enough for me to go on a walk instead of using the elliptical, but it's Saturday and I don't want to see all the other people walking around today, too. Ew, gross, human contact. :P

Baby steps

May. 15th, 2017 04:21 pm
silailo: (cacti)
I'm annoyed I paid and took the GRE, only to not need it for the program I want to get into (and will likely get into). In some ways I do wish I could apply to other grad schools, but I wouldn't hear from them until next year. I just hate that my two really good scores are going to waste.

I had to run up to the university again so I could catch one of my instructors during his office hours. He answered some of my desperate questions and assured me everything would be fine. Unfortunately, next year will be his last year teaching, and since he's the only fully-fledged archaeologist left in the department, he's the only one who can be my advisor. But this means the next archaeologist they're bringing in to replace him will have to take over whatever he'd been advising. Although I'm uneasy about this unknown factor (and it's something one of my other profs warned me about, saying it might not be a good idea to switch advisors like that halfway through a grad program), he assured me I'd be really pleased with new person. He didn't want to name names, though, and didn't say it was anyone I knew.

So now I have two letters of recommendation secured. Now I just need one more. I know who I want it from, but he hasn't answered my email yet, and I'm wondering if I should just make an appointment with him through the main office, which is what people have to do now because he's so busy juggling three different responsibilities. It's the same person I sat down with to discuss all the details of this program, and I didn't think at the time to ask him for a letter. I said in my email that we could meet again in person if that's more appropriate.

There's a lot I need to get done before I leave for the summer, and I'm running out of time. x_x
silailo: (belldandy blue)
*researches grad school statement of purpose examples*

Statement example: *eloquent, fascinating, intelligent, outlines entire research plan, trying to get into Harvard*

silailo: (adios)
Well, my planned workout didn't happen tonight due to reasons. I skipped yesterday because I'm lazy and plus we had dinner late last night. I usually like to exercise around 7pm if I use the elliptical. It's been too cold and rainy to go on walks. In fact, it's rainy like crazy right now and there's thunder and lightning.

I'm starting to wonder if this grad school thing won't happen this year. The application still isn't up. And yet they want to start classes this fall? Hmm. Still, I emailed one of my profs that I haven't spoken to in a long time to see if we could meet up. I'd like him to write a letter of recommendation for me. The other two profs I'd been speaking to could be the other two letters I need, one of whom I know already would write one. I'd have to ask the other. I want to be ready as soon as the application goes up.

I don't think I'd be too terribly disappointed if they didn't start classes this fall. That would give me more time on the job and a better chance to find a place that would take a six month lease. But the prof I spoke to about the program--I'll call him RS, was absolutely certain it would start in the fall. He had no doubts about it. The only issue would be that they would be taking applications "well into June." But it's almost May, so...

I started a little fic last night, but I kind of lost direction and it fizzled out. I tend to do that when I don't have an ending in mind. Plus it's mostly dialogue and that can cause things to stretch out when I don't know where a conversation is supposed to go. I'll finish it, though.


Apr. 11th, 2017 02:34 pm
silailo: (wah)
Went to the dentist today. Since I have Medicaid, I can only go once a year, but they wouldn't reschedule my next year's appointment because they can't schedule that far out right now due to the dumpster fire that is Congress, so they didn't know if they'd be accepting Medicaid this same time next year. I want to say something that is way out of character for me, so I'll just say darn all Republicans straight to heck and I hope someone steals their wallets and cars.

At least my checkup went well and there were no problems.Glad for that because I really didn't want any more fillings. The last ones I had done were awful.

I finished my Information Security Awareness training exams for work, so that's finally out of the way.

The only other thing I've been trying to get myself to do and can't because of random episodes of depression is fixing my personal statement, sending it to my prof for critique, and rounding up professors willing to write letters of recommendation for me. I want to be ready when the application is posted.

Also I've got some stuff on eBay again. Hopefully it'll all sell for at least the cost of the packing supplies. I'm sort of pissed my last auction sold for a measly 55 cents, so I almost decided to put the others away and wait another ten years. Having a fixed price on them would take too long to sell. I only have until May 1 to sell things.
silailo: (compass)
Today I went in and spoke with my professor. I won't go into all the details, but it looks like there's a high chance I'll be starting graduate school this fall.

The program sounds great, and I might even be able to arrange to get credit for doing my summer job. There's one class in the program I already took during my undergrad, so I won't need to do that one, and I've already done a field school. Still, I'll need to do something in place of a field school (can't do anything in the summer because I'm working). The program is very much focused on giving people career knowledge and skills, rather than all theory.

I happened to run into another one of my old teachers who will be retiring soon. I swear, I embarrass myself in front of her every time I speak with her, it's terrible.

I noticed my more elderly teachers looked great, but the female teacher I mentioned above is using a walker again. The last time she used it, it was because she had had some surgery. Then she got better and started walking on her own again. Hmm.

Best part of all this is I may very well be able to pay for all of it myself. So I might be in the bunkhouse again this year at work so I can save more money.

Life's...moving kind of fast all of a sudden.
silailo: (perfume)
I haven't been spending much time on here due to reasons.

Finally, finally got ahold of that professor I'd been trying to reach since last month. But I had to call the main office to get on his schedule. He's been doing something like three different jobs at the university, so he's crazy busy.

I sent an email on Sunday to the person who had asked me a few weeks ago if I was still interested in a GS-07 in Nevada. I asked if they had selected their candidate yet, and he replied today saying they were still deliberating, but he would look at my application again. I haven't done this for the people in New Mexico since it's been so long and I figured they had already hired, but I really should ask, if only for closure.

Family crap )
silailo: (bottle rose)
I called about an apartment yesterday, even though it's way too early to be moving into anywhere. It was just that it was the perfect price and in the perfect area (right behind where I'll be working!). It even has a washer and dryer. Unfortunately, someone had already put in an application for it. The apartment had been listed on Craiglist since last weekend and the owner got several calls about it. I had considered that if it was still available, I would move in early. I have the funds to pay the rent until work starts. But it appears I'm too late. I could elaborate more on what happened, but I just don't have the mental energy. The good news is that the landlord can be flexible with the lease, even though it's a one-year lease, so now I know that if I want to call them again in the future.

Today I finally got to visit my professor. After some discussion, he told me the university was going to begin its long-awaited anthropology master's program. It had been delayed due to some issues, but the program will begin this year. He encouraged me to apply. This would be a smart decision financially, because not only would I be an in-state applicant, but my university is one of the cheapest in the state. And with the amount of money I have saved right now, I could easily pay for a year, and maybe a second (I don't quite have enough to pay for out-of-state tuition at another university yet). Also, my professor mentioned there will be assistantships, and they are going to revive the field school on campus. He said he would love for me to be the first person to apply. The program I'd go into would focus on cultural resource management, which is the career field I've chosen.

So within the coming weeks I will be meeting with him again, and trying to set up a meeting with the department chair (who is also the dean or something or other now), the guy I'd been trying to contact for weeks with no reply, to further discuss the program.

What surprised me, though, was when my professor said I could probably even get in this year. If that's true (and I don't know how that would work. Wouldn't the application deadline be passed at this point?), then it wouldn't make sense for me to get an apartment for work this summer, because I wouldn't be able to stay a full six months. But I'll just have to play things by ear and see what happens.

And here I was out buying kitchen stuff yesterday with the expectation that I might get an apartment, and none too happily because I don't like doing this in the face of uncertainty. As a Christian, I pray for something and sometimes I'll prepare for it. I did it when I prayed for my first archaeology job. I went out and bought a bunch of tools, and the following summer I started my job. Though I didn't use the tools for work, I did volunteer for some work with an archaeologist and brought my own tools (even though she had some to use). In this case, however, even though I might not get my own place, I am preparing for the future. Call me crazy, but I also bought a vacuum cleaner. :P

silailo: (mingchao colors)
I still have nightmares about being back in college and not knowing where any of my classes are, and/or I've missed a certain class several times already and I start freaking out and trying to get my schedule up on my phone. This dream has been more frequent as of late.

Never did hear back from that professor. Time for Plan B. My therapist is going to be out of town for about a month, and she would like to see that I've written a statement of purpose by the time she gets back. I like having that accountability, and I've actually been brainstorming for a long time and have a lot written up in a Word document.

I'm visiting my sister on Tuesday and won't be back until Thursday. It's supposed to rain like crazy over there.
silailo: (Mingchao gun)
Good grief, I need to give my old university a call. I need to find out if that professor I've been trying to get ahold of is even in his office, or if he's been on vacation or something. I haven't heard back from him, even though I've sent him a few emails since our last convo. I saw on LinkedIn that he got a new position at the university, so maybe he's in transition or just really busy and hasn't been able to answer anything that isn't urgent.

Seriously, I need to get things rolling here. If for whatever reason I still can't get ahold of him, I'll email my other instructor.

OMG it needs to stop snowing. They just plowed our street today and it's snowing again. Good thing I got out today while the weather was decent.
silailo: (mingchao colors)
Oh my goodness, oh my goodness. I just sent off an email to an instructor at the college I graduated from asking for help applying to grad school. I did already do the GRE, so that was a step I got out of the way, but actually going through the process of applying... This has to be the year it happens. I don't want to wait any longer. I found out one of my instructors is retiring from his side job working with a local tribe, but I'm not sure this means he'll be retiring from teaching, but if he is then that would mean I'd have to track him down somehow if I want a letter of recommendation from  him (and he said he would do one for me if I needed one). I know of at least two others who would also be happy to write me one, but I haven't talked to them in a long time. It makes me feel guilty because I feel like I'm using them, but I do know they love helping students, so I have to keep that in mind.

Part of me doesn't understand why I waited so long to do this one simple thing. I let fear hold me back from doing a lot of things.

I don't know what to expect. I hope he'll get back to me.
silailo: (benkate)
Looking at the cost of graduate school makes me want to throw up. It doesn't help that I have to look at out of state schools because there's nothing in Washington for what I want to do. I'm saving money, but I'm a little over halfway for just one year at one of the schools I've been looking at. At least I'm in a privileged position that lets me save as much I have so far.

I know there's funding and whatnot (like heck I'm gonna be a teaching assistant--the mere idea makes my blood turn to ice), but I'd rather have at least most of the money before even applying anywhere.

Anyway, work goes. I have a week off the second week in October, and I'm going to the coast next weekend. I also have an interview with the Post Office for seasonal work next Thursday, which also happens to be a day I'm taking off anyway, so that worked out well.
silailo: (Default)
Still on light duty at work. I had my second round of physical therapy on Friday and have been doing a lot of stretches in the necessary places. Next Friday I have at least one more session, and then that same day I'm seeing the doctor for an update. I'm really, really hoping she'll clear me for the field. I can still sometimes feel a little something in my hip where I strained it, but it's not really painful. My physical therapist found the spot where I may have strained the muscle and used ultrasound to make it a little better and help it heal faster.

I really want to get back to the field. Well, I also need to since one from my crew is leaving for school in a few weeks, cutting us down to three people, but only two can go out in the field since I can't.

I've been thinking about grad school again. I sort of put it out of my mind for a while since it stressed me out to think about it. There's been a lot of uncertainty and the idea of going back to college sort of made me ill, especially when grad school is supposed to be a lot harder and more intense. I'm not sure I'm ready for that, and I'm not 100% sure what exactly I want to study. So I've had to reexamine my interests again, like I did before I decided on my Bachelor's degree, and I may be getting closer to a conclusion. I've taken an interest in a professor in Montana and the work they've done, so I ordered a book they wrote and printed off some of their academic articles to read. Their interests seem to be similar to mine.


I'm updating my Yuletide letter with the anticipation I'll be doing it again. This year I'm sticking to my guns and not caving by requesting/offering fandoms that are already getting requests and offers just so I can be easily matched with someone. My request will likely be a pinch hit.
silailo: (mingchao colors)
I've been keeping a paper journal lately, so sometimes I forget to post here. I won't stop, though!

I got an email today from the Forest Service about a job I applied for in Wyoming, but obviously I had to let them know I was already offered a position. But it's good to know my applications are at least getting noticed!

Then I got another email from the other people about housing for my job. There will be rent, which doesn't surprise me and it's something I've wondered about. Here is--very sadly--the first time in my life I've had to pay rent. But I had to email this guy about it. I'm really curious about what this place looks like. Over the email she said "rooms", but when someone says "bunkhouse" I think more of an open plan. But I would think there would need to be some kind of privacy afforded the boarders because what if there are men and women in the same building? Even when I was at field school, the building we stayed in had two separate sections for men and women.

I also wonder if there will be other people there besides the others who were hired alongside me, people who do different jobs. That would be interesting.

I've been really getting down to business with studying for the GRE. I finished reviewing geometry today and feel a bit...overwhelmed. Algebra was fine because I took it not too long ago in community college, and did fine with it. But I haven't had geometry since probably my  junior year of high school. And I only did one semester of it, when I could've done two, but I found out I didn't need any more math to graduate so I said goodbye to math. Or so I thought. @$%^&* college. So quite a bit of the information I had to review was new to me.

But reviewing basic skills does little for me in the face of GRE-styled questions. The fact is, I'm too slow. If I don't know right away how I can solve a problem, I might as well just guess to keep up with the timer. I'm not even sure it's worth it to pay for a subscription to Magoosh, but then every time I go there to view the available videos I'm allowed to watch on my trial period I feel like they might be able to help me out. I just don't want to bomb the math, but then I can't ignore the verbal and especially the writing because those are more important for my chosen career field. I think I'm dreading the writing portion more than anything. You can't expect quality out of me in thirty minutes.

Well, if I do really crappy, I guess I can just retake it. And fork over the $200 to take it again.

silailo: (urd)
Yes, I do have a job this summer. Funny how of all the locations for the jobs I applied for, I ended up at the location closest to home. I wonder if that had any play in them choosing me.

Now I've been debating with myself over whether I should take the GRE before I go. I leave in five weeks, but my math studying has been awful. Nothing helps. I stare at the practice problems and have no clue how to approach most of them. I always have to look up the answers. I signed up for a free 7-day trail with Magoosh since I've heard so many good things about them. I'll see if they can be any help...though I have my doubts. They do have a 30-day subscription, but it costs the same as their 6-month subscriptions for either quant or verbal. Plus I'll need help for more than 30 days. I just want to do decently on the math, not ace it.

......Well, before I even finished this post I scheduled the exam. I scheduled it a few days before I have to leave for the job, on a Friday which means I won't be babysitting my niece that day. Kinda feel sick about it... Mostly because of the cost, but I can afford it. I just hate spending that much money on something as dumb as a test I might not even do that well on. And I hate to make myself stress out right before I start my job. I think the reason I've put all this graduate school stuff off for so long is because I stressed out for so long during my undergrad years that I've been doing everything I can to avoid it. I got used to being stress-free. ...Maybe that's a sign I shouldn't attend graduate school yet, if that's how I feel. In fact, I was thinking about it tonight, how maybe I should get some work experience and explore more of my interests in the field before making any attempts to apply.

Geez, I meant to edit a chapter of The Long Dark tonight so I could get ready to post it this weekend. I didn't realize it's almost been three weeks since I posted a chapter.

Wait WHAT?

Feb. 10th, 2015 06:16 pm
silailo: (pencils)
Oh my gosh, I was looking at one of the schools my instructor recommended I check out when I found a professor who not only does archaeology, but she does archaeology of the Old West. *heavy breathing* I don't know what I love more, Columbia Plateau archaeology or historical archaeology of the Old West. I find ancient stuff exciting, but nothing gets my heart going like the Old West. I'll have to see if I can get my hands on any of her publications. Heck, maybe I'll be more interested in historical archaeology? I DON'T KNOW.

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