School-life tension? :P

All right, I’m set to go out tomorrow and blow $30 on some paints. 😛 (I feel silly going all the way out to the art store and spending $5. Even though that may be the sensible thing to do.)

I’ve checked: I have more weeks in the semester than I expected! So now I for real have three weeks left of classes! And I should get started on my peer grading.

I think Database Management will be…manageable, given that the work I’m doing for the last group assignment seems easy enough. Then there is the Final, which…I’m not really sure I’ll do well on, but I think it will be OK (as a co-worker of mine is fond of saying). I have a tutoring session scheduled for tomorrow morning; I’m hoping that this will make the Final easier.

And then there is improving on my Instructional Design proposal, and dealing with the Research Guide for my Reference course. Not really liking that last class, right now (perceived interpersonal friction because I was stressed, and now the Prof thinks I don’t care; and I’m wondering if I care enough to explain to her what was going on, which isn’t her business), but I might be able to do something with the last project which will make it worth my time.

The other day…I did get out my colored pencils. Like the archive of colored pencils going back to 1994 or whatever…

They work well, still; they just aren’t suitable for reproduction work (which is why I started in with the watercolors in the first place)! I have found, though, that some of these pencils are actually using pigments which appear very similar to what’s in my paints (like Cobalt Turquoise).

The major issue I have and have had with these is that it’s difficult to cover the paper 100%. The workaround I found for this is to paint the paper first, then color it with the pencils, so that what shows through is not white, but something else that adds some kind of depth or contrast.

I mean, that’s old news, but if you haven’t been following this blog for years, you might not have found the information. (I need to work on my organization of past posts.)

I also have too many colored pencils. I need to choose one or two of my repeat colors and then give away (or at least put away) the rest. It’s just annoying when I’m trying to match a color and I have more than one that look very similar…

…and I should aim to get rid of the older Prismacolors, first (some of which may be older than some of my readers).

Hmm. Well, aside from that, work was…tiring. And I still have yet to decide on my topic for the Reference Guide.

I’m thinking that color dynamics aren’t an “academic” enough topic, and that I would be better off going with something like an Art History angle where it comes to Japanese woodblock printing. I mean, it’s niche enough that I probably wouldn’t have to worry too much about narrowing my search…whereas color dynamics would have me sorting through masses of shallow books.

They’re not all shallow, just most of them don’t touch on what I want to know. At all. Like, I don’t care about interior design…or picture books…I’ve tried researching this before, but maybe my mistake is trying to use my home library system instead of one that has an effective OPAC (Online Public Access Catalog).

On the other hand, I’ve been reading handprint today…and that site has a wealth of information on watercolors. I’ve mentioned it before, but I haven’t until now just read it for kicks. But if I did want to do some work on pigments and watercolors as regards a Research Guide, I think there is a page there somewhere with an annotated bibliography, from which I could start.

Actually, that sounds a bit too hard to risk an assignment on it.

I’ll think about it.

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Tired again.

Right now I’m having a bit of a time with wanting to post and not wanting to sit at my computer. Apparently, my old tablet was able to be fixed, but I’m also not working on that, either.

I have a lot to do over the next week, and I’m not really happy about it. I only have four weeks to go in the semester, however. It just feels like I’m wasting my life by planning for the rest of it…but that’s about how I felt through all of high school. It’s also apparent that what I am doing is likely the most valuable thing I can be doing right now.

I just really hate group projects. Not to mention that I’m not comfortable in Database Management and feel like I’m slacking because I’m a week behind (largely due to a month full of family visitations — which can be nice, but they take up resources of time and energy).

And…politics are a bit scary. But the only way I’m involved is by existing and living a normal life, so…

(said every commoner under a tyrant ever)

I also did get curious/fatigued enough to look at my watercolor lightfastness chart. I REALLY REALLY should not use Alizarin Crimson! It’s been about four months since I put that thing in the sun. (Aureolin is still going strong.) The Crimson has just…noticeably faded. I checked that one (as a known fugitive pigment) to see if anything had faded at all. It’s kind of shocking.

After the next week is over, I can try and post some images. I was looking over my backposts and I realized I really, really miss working with color.

Maybe I’ll start looking at tutorials online like I’ve seen others doing, to help me with subject matter and looseness.

Otherwise…I’ve got to go to work tomorrow, and am not sure if it is an additional stressor, or a relief from stress. (Is it procrastination to go to work when you have unfinished assignments?)

I’m also questioning whether I should have stayed in Cataloging despite almost bombing my Beginning Cataloging class (which is the only grade I’ve got at this point which is not some version of A). The thing is, I can’t use Cataloging outside of a library system, whereas I can use Digital Services skills in Web Development and Web Design (which is where I think I want to be…it just may be much more lucrative to be a Librarian).

I am just really hoping that not all Web Development is as math-based as my Database Management class…I work well with languages, but logic problems are a different thing. I should be able to find out whether I picked the wrong path in Intro to Programming, though…and I only have one month left of this semester.

And come Fall, if all goes well, it should be my last semester.

I have a feeling I would be good in Collection Development, too…

Not wanting to get back to studying.

As I look over my bookcase…it is evident where my thoughts lie (and it’s not with what I need to do). I have major sections on learning Japanese language, Graphic Design, Web Design, Art, Writing. There is a Religion section mostly covering Buddhism, Daoism, Hindu beliefs. There is a section on Native American history (stuff I bought in American Indian Studies classes before I had to drop them out of psychological pain), Metaphysics, Psychology, and a small bit of fiction.

Then there are the textbooks for my Library & Information Science program, which are just crammed onto the shelves after the bookends (though these overlap with the Graphic Design books). In another bookcase I have a lot of Gender Studies books, and craft books (Jewelry, macrame, knotting, beading, wirework), along with old textbooks from my time in community college.

On a different shelf are sewing, knitting, and crochet books, along with one on bookbinding (! where did that come from?), career guidance, more Writing; and then there is the overflow shelf behind me where I’ve moved everything that I’ve taken off of my main bookcase (or which wouldn’t fit).

Right now, it’s obvious that I want to work with Writing, Art, Graphic Design, Web Design, and Japanese. But…that’s not what I have to do, right now. Right now I need to be working on my Instructional Design class, my Reference & Information Services class, and my Database Management class.

None of these are things I would have taken unless I thought I might need them. In particular, Database Management is difficult, and probably not something I would like to do for a living (or at all), but I’m dealing with trying to do the best I can, for my Vocational program (I didn’t realize it would be so difficult when I signed up for it — though at least now I know that I kind of don’t want to work with abstract mathematical thought, or to be a Full-Stack Web Developer).

Instructional Design prepares me to be an Academic Librarian instead of a Public Librarian, but this is hard as well, especially as I didn’t take Information Literacy, beforehand. Reference & Information Services is not hard, but it takes a lot of time and work, and the projects are intimidating for someone like me who is shy in dealing with people.

On top of this, I still have to complete Phase 2 of my Title IX training, in addition to dealing with graduation paperwork. Not to mention, my ePortfolio…and dealing with the Honors Society. Yes, it is a good thing that I’m only working 11 hours a week, right now. Especially as I haven’t been able to get much done on the studying front, for about a week, and am now actually behind (even though I was learning a lot by being with family).

I just don’t think I was up for getting heavily back into classwork, today. I have been awake for fewer hours than I would have liked, but then I kind of knew that would happen when I took medication around 2 AM this morning (after having written what I did last night, after the gender group: which was important).

The issue, I believe, is motivation…and intimidation. Whenever I get behind, I get intimidated away from dealing with it, and that in turn gets me farther behind — until about a week passes, and then somehow I get a second wind and blow through everything in one kind of frenetic, obsessive, somewhat-manic, pass.

Coming up, we’re going to need to go food shopping: and I am not sure if I should be helping, just to keep myself active and engaged; or working on my homework (the latter of which, seems to be the more responsible plan). However…we’re almost out of fruit, and I can’t trust people to buy anything more than apples, unless I tell them to. I actually may be more productive if I go out and move around, then come back to study; than if I stay unclean and in my pajamas all day and just try and plow through the reading.

I should remember though, that if I do go food shopping, I won’t have as much time as I’d like to do anything like painting or writing or sewing…but it may help get me out of bed, in a way that the lure of reading about Reference Management will not (and in fact, the latter may help drive me back to bed).

Which brings to mind, the awesome little (freakin’ expensive) Japanese stationery store that I went to while on Break. But…I think I can wait to expound upon that, another time.

Right now I’m writing because I’m trying to remember who I am, as versus what I have to do. They don’t totally line up. And I need to remember that although I am a bit unhappy at this point, wanting to do something for myself rather than someone else; I think I only have three or four weeks of this semester left to go, and then I’ll be released.

In about a week, I should be able to sign up for Summer classes. I’ve decided to keep Cybersecurity and Intro to Programming, mostly because I can’t think of anything better, I keep coming back to these, and together, they’re only two units. This should give me plenty of time to deal with my ePortfolio.

My major hesitation here is that I haven’t yet taken an internship, although I have plenty of experience working in Public Libraries, albeit at low levels. In particular, it could be really awesome to do an internship with the GLBT Historical Society — but I don’t know if I’ll have the time (or the transportation). Although I should remember that I can also apply to be a Librarian Trainee in my own system, which would be like an internship. The only drawback is not being able to broaden my horizons by meeting new people.

I think I feel a bit better. It’s a little before 11 PM my time (and I’m not supposed to be blogging late at night; much as I am supposed to be exercising — which I’m not, and I’m sure you can see why: too many demands on my time), so I should probably sign off and take my medication and get to bed; or get to studying, and then bed.

Sleep dysfunction?

Alright, I was up until about 2:30 AM Sunday morning…and slept almost all the way through the daylight hours, yesterday (it is now early Monday morning, here). I’ve got to remember not to do that again. The major issue, on top of staying up so late, was taking (sedating) medication so late, as well. In light of that, I’ve just taken it for tonight, which will hopefully not knock me out until 5 PM.

Yesterday’s post, I now realize, was full of relief: I had planned to stay up late Saturday night and early Sunday morning, doing the aforementioned group assignment in preparation for a meeting, later Sunday morning. I had essentially given up hope of being able to complete it on time, meaning being resigned to getting a B or C in this class. However, I wasn’t the only one having problems.

Now the deadline is Thursday night, and since I basically squandered most of my working time today (in what I believe was stress-related comfort hiding/sleeping: it’s a pattern), that means I’m going to have to do what I can online tomorrow, and then hit the library on Tuesday. Wednesday I work, Thursday is the meeting.

And this is on top of all my other assignments.

I’m kind of ticked at myself for not looking at my other group assignment, which will be due at an inopportune time: I could have started my part anytime earlier this week (after having completed my individual exercise which prepared me for it), but I didn’t. I’m still a bit upset at myself for having been as non-helpful as I was, in the last phase of the same group assignment. The issue was having been so far behind that what we were doing (and why) was almost indecipherable to me. And if I had tried to help, it likely would have been more like unintentional sabotage.

Don’t believe the Professor when he tells you that you don’t have to do the reading!

At least, though, I only have to worry about three classes, now. I went over what is coming due, but I haven’t noted it down in my Bullet Journal, yet. It’s just overwhelming.

There is some other stuff going on, as well; in fact, more than one major thing. I think what I’m going to have to do is try and just find some way to stay out of bed, tomorrow (even if it means doing something fun or necessary, instead of homework). And I’m going to have to set limits on time spent in social situations, even if they’re obligatory. I hate to look like a bookworm (or alternately, computer nerd), but right now I have obligations in a Master’s program, and I’m in an Honors society, and I would like not to get kicked out within the year.

Like I said, there’s more to this that I’m not saying. Responsibilities, family, adulting…it gets deeper, but that’s not my story to tell.

And I think now would be a good time for me to get some “rest”…or at least, stop thinking of things to do. I’ve done what I can for tonight, and it would be kinda dysfunctional for me to stay up until 5 AM working, just because I got out of bed around 7 PM and am feeling guilty. It actually might trigger relapse symptoms, as well, so…yeah, I should at least try and get some sleep…

Taking a break

I’m just taking a moment right now to unwind from work. Amazingly, things weren’t too bad — this is the first time I’ve been back in two weeks. And…oddly enough, I’m not feeling bad about it. It helped that I got an ice cream afterwards. 🙂

The major issue I’m dealing with now is switching back to a work/school schedule, as versus just a school schedule–!

Also, I’m a bit off because, outside of my Reference Shadowing opportunity, I haven’t been dealing with people outside my family, for about two weeks (and I was socially “off” while I was shadowing, as well). In particular, when signing people up for library cards, I’m having a harder time accessing my, “Welcome to the Library,” speech.

I also received a bit of ease in my assignments: my last professor has now been contacted about my Disability accommodations, so I don’t have to worry about that, anymore. I might want to go ahead and try contacting my Vocational program again…we just never met, before the beginning of this semester. Things are just now starting to look doable, for me.

I have been advised that there is a Trainee program in my County which allows me to enter what is in effect a junior-type Librarian position in my last semester, or shortly after graduation. This will likely be a good experience, if I can either drive or arrange transportation for the period (I really need to learn how to drive!).

It looks like the Reference assignment that I’ve got isn’t going to be as easy as I’d hoped: our Reference section at my library has just been massively downsized, and the same is about to happen at the library at which I shadowed the Reference staff. I have a week to get all of that work done, though I think most of it, I can do online.

And I should expect next week’s work to start up shortly, meaning I should get on it.

Just typing through some stress.

I have an assignment to complete for Instructional Design, but to be honest, I am not really into it and am not sure at this point how exactly I will do it. I think that I need to work alongside Steps 1-4 (which I still have to edit and resubmit) with Step 5, rather than trying to draw things out of that flawed document. I’m writing now in order to give myself some space.

The last week has been taken up with trying to catch up on things I didn’t do, before…and I think there’s something about staying up after midnight studying for at least two days in a row that…makes one not want to get out of bed in the morning. Especially when one knows that there are multiple walls of study waiting for them.

I didn’t go to a movie last night and didn’t go to breakfast this morning, to give myself some time. The problem is, I can’t schedule everything else around my waking hours when I stay up after midnight: sometimes I actually do need to get up at 7 AM. Most of the time last night was spent hardcore studying. Most of the time this morning and early afternoon, was spent sleeping.

At this point, I’m kind of wondering how people who have multiple interests outside of their field of study, and a job, and maybe (!) are taking care of themselves, make it through a Master’s program. (Without, you know, gaining weight and losing sleep and needing to see a counselor regularly.)

I did, however, submit my Candidacy (to graduate) form, yesterday, so at least that is out of the way. I have realized that I’m actually 7 units beyond the minimum that I would need to graduate, and as I’ve been planning on taking more classes during the Summer and Fall semesters…well, yeah.

I think at the end of my degree, I’ll be 15 units above the minimum.

And then there is the entire issue of my ePortfolio. I’m thinking that I will need to start working on this in Summer at the latest, meaning that I should likely only take Cybersecurity (1 unit) and Intro to Programming (1 unit). This is as versus taking a MySQL course, which I can do at any time on the wider Web.

I suppose that’s not to mention that this will all be over in 9 months, if things go well.

AND…I did actually make the time to shower and wash my hair last night. That was a good thing. It’s also a good thing I didn’t go out to breakfast, because I wasn’t that hungry.

Okay, I think I’m about ready to start working on Step 5 of my Instructional Design thing (–! seriously, I don’t want to be doing Instructional Design, but it’s a competency I have to fulfill).

Gah.

But I guess you can see why I majored in Creative Writing the first time around: writing actually calms me down and helps me get my thoughts together, most of the time. When I was younger, I felt like that was the only constant in my life (though that wasn’t entirely true: family was the other constant).

Right now I’m looking at my bookshelf/personal library, and…there are so many books I want to read, but I don’t have time to read them now.

I should probably make some time to consolidate this stuff, so it’s all in one case (or reasonably close to it)…

Photo of last night’s fern frond:

All right,

I have three things to finish reading and then research after that, which would be easier if I were going in to work (but I’m off until the middle of next week). I just don’t think it’s going to get done: the deadline is in less than eight hours and I have dinner and family things to attend to.

I will do the readings, but all of that…is a bit much. Especially when I’m socially inhibited and have trouble even talking to people I like, let alone ask them for free help.

So below, is what I did last night:

embroidered fern frond
Not the best focus, but you get the idea. 🙂

I started out trying to use stem stitch for the main stem, but a regular backstitch worked just fine for the rest of it. Though the stem stitch looks a little better, if I can control its path (each stitch slants diagonally, and this gives the path a tendency to curve)…

I had been wanting to try this variation with petal stitch (that’s what each of the little leaves are), as versus fly stitch, which looks more like a pine frond:

fly stitch sample
Fly stitch sample, done December of last year.

Heh. Kind of nice to have a media library on WordPress. 🙂

Anyhow, I’m doing this instead of frantically reading right now because I think it’s what’s best for me in the moment. That is…I need to give myself a break. It’s possible that missing this Discussion will lower my grade to a B automatically, but I can’t be sure at this moment.

My GPA is fine, though. It’s enough to get me into an Honors society, meaning that I’m in the top 10% of my class. (Who knew.) Right now I’m just not sure exactly how long my GPA will be high enough to stay in that society…

But maybe they aren’t, you know, evil. 😉

As regards the little fern thing…I know that I could do this on a larger scale with more fronds, but I’d have to be sure of where the light and shadows are coming from. It would make more sense to put the lighter green at the top, yeah? 🙂 unless this is very dappled light, which in the natural world, it would be. (Fern under conifer?)

I will get back to studying now. 🙂 Thank you all for your support!