Top ten: things happening to me lately

7:03 AM Edit This 1 Comment »
These are in no particular order of importance. I wrote this update as a list to make it quicker, and when I started to rank the items I realized that I would spend so much time agonizing over it that it would defeat the purpose.

1. I graduated for the third time in my life. In exchange for $55,000 in student loans and a few of my less vital internal organs, Northeastern University deigned to award me a diploma. I am now considered a Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis--my ego has inflated almost to the breaking point. After three years of full-time coursework on top of 60+ hour work-weeks (that culminated in a successful thesis and a lot of paperwork) I'm finally free.

2. Having the Master's degree in hand, I took the scariest test of my life: the Behavior Analyst Certification Board exam. First of all, the stupid thing cost me almost $500 in fees. Second of all, the pass rate last year was only 40%. Third of all, if I don't pass, I might not be able to get a job. There are a lot of things riding on the results, which I don't get until after a thorough psychometric analysis. It still keeps me up at night, and I took it a week ago. It's going to be a long month.

3. With all this free time, I'm reading a book for pleasure for the first time in a YEAR. Now, I love to read. But with all of the researching and thesis-writing and staring-at-a-computer-screen that I've been doing, I could probably count the books I've read for pleasure on one hand. Actually, I definitely could. It's a great feeling. I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning reading "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett. Yes, yes, I know I'm way behind on that one. And no, I've never seen the movie. But wow, what a great book! Not to mention, last summer I made my first big-girl purchase of an Ellen Granter painting, who did the cover art for the book. So I basically had to read it. I'll be done with it today, I'm practically salivating thinking about all of the books I can read next!

4. The next logical step after finishing school, aside from tearing through paperbacks, is to look for a new job. Newton Public Schools has served me well over the past three years, and I'm sad to leave, but it's time for me to move upward and onward. There are no jobs for me in-district, so off I go into the wild blue yonder to have more responsibility, a better wardrobe, an office of my own, and more money. I'll miss wearing yoga pants and hoodies to work every day, but I'm excited about trading them in for dressed and suits and business cards. Imagine, business cards! I'm applying for Behavior Analyst positions all over Boston, both in public and private schools, as well as in collaboratives and private consulting companies. So far, the most promising interview I had was at a private school in Waltham. In fact, they asked me back for a second interview on the spot and when I went in for said second interview, they were all smiles, asked me when I could start, and gave me a comprehensive lecture about benefits. I have a feeling I'll be getting a job offer some time early next week. I think I would take it. Today, I'm interviewing at a highly controversial private institution that still uses contingent shock for highly dangerous behaviors. I find it fascinating and I'm absolutely curious to see the place, but I think the commute would be prohibitively long.

5. I'm continuing on my streak of compulsive hair-dying. This time, I traded in the chocolate brown for vampire red. Literally, the jar of hair color says "Vampire Red" on it. Why not?

6. Little sis is getting married! The wedding is here in Boston on August 11th. I'm very excited for her.

7. Big bro is adding another chicklet to his coop. The new baby is due in mid-July, the same week as the old baby's third birthday. I'm very excited to meet my niece. I can't imagine having enough room in my heart to love her the way I love Quentin, but mom says it's amazing how elastic a person's heart can be.

8. My health has been generally quite good. I went to see my rheumatologist (the flamboyant Dr. Diaz) yesterday morning, and he was tickled at my progress. Picture this: a small, graying Mexican man with a thick accent and a penchant for flair in snug clothes, decked out from head to toe in Faconnable. The first time I met him, I was sitting in an exam room feeling gloomy and sorry for myself, and he swung open the door with one hand, strutted in like he was accepting an Oscar, and exclaimed, "this is Doctor Diaz." Well Dr. Diaz held my hands and examined my knuckles and gasped, "there is no swelling! How lovely." The old loon doesn't need to see me for four months, unless there's a problem. I'm hoping for an uneventful summer, as far as that goes.

9. One of my nearest and dearest got married last week. We took her to San Francisco for a bachelorette party weekend, which was obviously a whole lot of fun. Then I flew back to the Great American West a week later for the ceremony near Tucson, Arizona. The weather was perfect, the groom was handsome, and I've never seen the bride look as beautiful as she did that day. I think she may have actually been glowing. I am so happy for her, I actually did cry. During pictures with the photographer. Because I like to ruin pictures.

10. I've become unabashedly obsessed with food. Recipes, cooking, food blogs, etc. A few of my friends and I bought a CSA farm share from Red Fire Farm in Granby, Massachusetts (out by Amherst) and we got our first load of veggies last night! We got cilantro, green garlic, hakurei turnips, purple kohlrabi, kale, spinach, red leaf lettuce, braised greens, and spring mix. That list includes more than one thing I hadn't the faintest idea about, so we had a very fun adventure last night divvying everything up and cooking a colorful, flavorful feast. In fact, we decided to keep a log of what we were cooking and eating and obsessing over here. Last night's menu was: kale chips with green garlic and white bean dip, kohlrabi curry, and mini apple crisps. Can't wait to see what next week brings!


luke&whit said...

Congrats on the Master's! I'm so happy you are blogging again!!