Friday, March 30, 2012

Photo dump

I was updating my iPhone and downloaded photos, so I thought I'd just do a picture post with all the random photos.

These popped up a few weeks ago, but I was so excited to see life in my yard. Of course now the weeds have taken over and the grass will start growing like crazy, but it's still nice.

I've probably said this before, but part of the reason I got to come to Missouri was because of the wienermobile. It sat outside the journalism school for a week and a half a few weeks ago, so of course I kept taking pictures of it.

I found this mistake while doing GRE homework, and yes, I take pictures of these things.

But I caught this mistake before it went in print. This was a very common mistake at my Georgia paper. But maybe I taught some students not to make it.

The farmer's market opened on Saturday. There's not a lot of stuff yet, but I'm still looking forward to having fresh vegetables again!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Spring break

It's still weird to me that things like spring break are back in my life. Unfortunately, spring break doesn't actually mean I get the week off work. It actually makes my work schedule crazier. But I don't have to teach class, and I have a few days off.

I decided I wanted to get out of town (without actually spending the night out) and do something fun. So I spent Monday in St. Louis. I think I've mentioned before that friends of mine from Georgia live there. I took their two older kids to a museum. It was really fun, and the kids were great.

 A butterfly and Iron Man with the "pretend" fire truck.

I loved that in a room with huge blocks, a ball pit, a slide and more, he found a book and sat down to read.

The most interesting part of the museum is the huge structure outside. It's hard to tell from this picture, but it is all really high. I think it would be frightening for me if I was by myself.

After the museum and catching up with the grown-ups, I did some shopping and met up with a college roommate for dinner and drove back home.

It was a fun day and a nice day away from everything. I went more than 12 hours without checking work email, which is some kind of record for me. And I was off Twitter all day, another rare thing.

The rest of the week I'll be working odd hours and using off time to catch up on stuff for class.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

And some news...

The other day I got a notice that a job I had applied for over a year ago was open again. (Well, they never filled it the first time but …) At the time I had convinced myself it was a dream job for me, but when I got the alert, I had no interest in applying for it.

There has been a lingering question about what's next for me, and as August started sneaking up, I had to pay more attention to that. But over the last couple of months, a few things have come up that I was interested in, and I had a vague plan for some combination of working and going to school for my masters.

And while I was feeling very blessed that things seemed to be dropping into my lap, I still didn't want to give up my dream job that I currently have. The past seven months have been the most fun and challenging of my professional life. I love all the different roles I have, and I really love this newsroom and the students I work with. I know for a fact there is no place like it.

For a few weeks, there has been chatter about me getting to stay for another year. It is absolutely what I hoped for, but I was trying not to get my hopes up.

On Monday morning, I got the official word that I do get to stay. (My boss and I sealed it with a high five.) I am thrilled and feel very blessed that this is how it worked out. 

I'm also relieved I don't have to move again this summer. I had been hoarding boxes just in case, but they went out with the recycling this morning. And I'm accepting visitors through August 2013!

Friday, March 16, 2012

A lesson in cynicism

Apologies for the lack of posting. There's a ton of stuff going on, and the blog just falls to the bottom of the list. Sadly, cooking has too, so I don't have any fun recipes to share. And as most of my life is right now, this post is about work, but there's more to it than just work.

One of the things I love about this job is all the different things I get to do. When I get bored of doing one thing, I have something entirely different I can do. Of course, during a week like this when I have deadlines on all of these things, it's overwhelming.

But one of my responsibilities is opinion editor. It's a very interesting role anytime because I try hard to balance viewpoints. But there's a local election coming up, and I have been flooded with letters to the editor. I've been dealing with a lot of comments and criticisms about the fact all the letters support one candidate. I know it's not personal, and I don't take offense. But on Thursday I realized it had really been building on me.

I had a long to do list and kept getting interrupted with questions about the opinion page and was quickly losing patience with the whole thing. I got another comment about the letters I had to respond to, and I had pretty much had it. Fortunately, my co-worker saved me from being too blunt in my response. But I walked out of work in quite a mood that I couldn't even describe.

I'm in a Beth Moore study on Thursday nights, and I was in such a bad mood I was talking myself out of going. But I went (about 30 minutes late), and I'm so glad I did. Beth's message was on cynicism, and that's exactly the point I had reached in all of this work stuff. Her message was exactly what I needed to hear. It's hard not to become cynical about some stuff at work, but it's a real problem when it spreads into the rest of my life. She gave five reasons not to get cynical:

1. Jesus is still flagrantly changing lives.
2. Real people are doing the real thing all over the real world.
3. The appetite to study Scripture is increasingly ravenous.
4. Some long-standing barriers are breaking down.
5. God will kick your tail.

I'm thinking this list needs to be up on the wall in my office.

And with the letters, I should be proud to live in a community where people are civic-minded and involved in the democratic process. It's a privilege to work in a job where I play a small role in allowing people to share their voice, but some days I need God to kick my tail to remind me of it.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


I have never been a basketball fan, but Mizzou is having a very strong season and suddenly it matters. And I've gotten sucked in. I ruined a pot of soup because I got wrapped up into listening to a very disappointing game against our biggest rival on Saturday.

I've gotten to play with a cool new tool for posting to social media and tracking it. I love playing with something new and figuring it out. I also got to train people to use it this week, which is one of my favorite things to do.

I broke down and bought Girl Scout cookies. I resisted for a while, but finally bought three boxes when I was at the grocery store.

I'm doing Beth Moore's James study, and I've started a GRE prep class. I'm starting to feel like I'm drowning in workbooks.

The notecards have also returned. I was the notecard queen in high school and college, and now I have a fresh pack of cards and a box and they are starting to fill up with GRE vocabulary words. And they are scattered all around my house.

I've switched back to my NIV study Bible for my Beth Moore study. This is the Bible I got in high school and used up until a few years ago when I got a new, smaller ESV version. My Bible study in high school went through James, so I am enjoying seeing my notes and underlines from back then.

Things are starting to become clearer about what happens after this job ends, but God is continuing to surprise me and I'm learning to trust Him in this.