" /> Wandering Aimlessly: December 2002 Archives

« November 2002 | Main | January 2003 »

December 31, 2002

Happy New Year!

I have to take down my Christmas JC. I don't have time now, though. Plus, I really like that picture. So he'll stay a bit longer. <.g>

2002 was a good year. Let's start at the beginning with the highlights.

Finished up the cruise. Had a wonderful time in the Caribbean. Went back to school...

Bought tickets to the NSYNC concert. Probably ushered a bunch of basketball games as well as a few other this-or-thats at Assembly Hall.

March is disappearing from my memory. More school, more ushering, probably some Sims. Should look back in archives to find out what I was doing in March.

Went to two NSYNC concerts in Chicago. Accidentally found their afterparty at White Star. More school, more ushering, etc.

Finished up the semester at school. Moved down to Florida for the summer. Began working at Disney-MGM Studios at Toy Story Pizza Planet. Met some great new friends, Heather, Karen, Jessica and Amy. Was reunited with great old friends in Carolyn, Tonya, Gina, and my other Orlando friends.

The height of Orlando life. Started working at the Orlando Science Center. Continued working, settled into a nightlife routine.

More wonderfulness of Orlando. Attended CFTC.

My family came to visit for a few days and help me move out. Got first speeding ticket. Left Orlando, much to my sadness and tears. Mom and I took a mini-roadtrip, stopping in Daytona, Atlanta (to see Carolyn), and Chattanooga. Started my last semester of school ever.

Settled into the routine of school. Started ushering at Assembly Hall again. Started looking for jobs: career fair, e-recruiting, etc. Took graduation pictures.

Went on a few job interviews.

More job interviews. Turned twenty-two. Had a wonderful Thanksgiving; saw my cousins and ate under the Christmas tree in the Walnut Room.

Was offered three jobs. Two in the span of two days. Had an agonizing decision to make, but I finally accepted one and turned down the other. Had a wonderful Christmas, and am on my way to Orlando to see Carolyn, Heather, Amy, Gina, Jessica, Karen, and everyone else, with Aarti in tow. Should be a BLAST.

2002 was a great year. Lots of new things will be beginning in 2003, and if all goes well, it will be even better.

Much love to all of my friends! Happy New Year!

December 29, 2002

Another job

Did I mention that I got offered another job? The one with the HR firm that I interviewed with, oh, a month ago. Yeesh. So that's three for three. Too bad I didn't interview for any jobs I really wanted. I should feel all good that I had three offers in an economy where many people have none. I should feel good that I have a job at all. But none of the places I interviewed with, and, by extension, the offers, were dream jobs for me. As much as Disney was, the future outlook for it was not. As much as the future outlook for the bank looks good, the current excites me not one ounce. Same for the HR firm, with less pay. lol. So instead of being grateful, I'm bitching and moaning. What is wrong with me? <.sigh>

December 28, 2002

Baby-makin' machines

I set up Sims on my new computer. I have been addicted for the last two days now. I, of course, downloaded JC (and the rest of the guys) again, with plans to build houses for them all, two at a time, including some of my friends. Ya know? A happy little neighborhood. Sim!Kate and Sim!JC fell in love before I had time to do anything else, and they had a baby. Jocelyn is her name. Raising her was painful, I tell ya. Their social and their fun was so low by the time she became a child. So, to help with that, Sim!JC and Sim!Kate played in bed. Um... so they're horny little sims. It's a good thing they don't have jobs, because they're about to raise their second child. And I choked on a name, not having had time to plan and pick one out, and in heading off the poor thing being named Sim Baby Chasez... ugh. Lol. He's got a dopey name. But that's okay. At least I don't have to call him Simmy. <.g>

December 27, 2002

Busy couple of days

I feel like the week has FLOWN by. Wow. Yesterday we went to see Stomp in Chicago, as part of our Christmas present from my parents. It was so cool!! I totally want to learn to play the drums now. Right after I finish teaching myself the piano. <.giggle> Afterwards, we went to Gene and Georgetti's, a really good Italian restaurant right over in the neighborhood of the White Star. <.g>

Today, my mom and I got out super early to be at the mall when it opened. I hate shopping, I really do. Blah. But it was productive. I got a new coat, a nice long black wool one (for wearing over suits). Then I went to Casual Corner to purchase some work clothes. I almost started crying right there in the store because I want so badly not to have to wear suits to work. I don't know WHAT I was thinking accepting a job that has a business professional dress code. I hate it. Hate it more than anything. Ugh. But now I better stay in this job a year, because I spent more than $600. AHHHHH!!! Suits are EXPENSIVE. But. My aunt and uncle gave me a $200 gift certificate for my birthday/graduation/Christmas, which was SO nice of them, and my mom bought this Cure Card for breast cancer research, and it ended up getting us $120 off, and THEN by using her Casual Corner charge, we got another $20 off. So in reality, it cost less than $300 and I got a blue jacket, blue pants, black pants, a grey jacket, a black dress, a black suit with purple lining (jacket, pants and shirt), a pair of black pinstripe pants, a blue, white and black striped shell sweater, a black and white striped shirt, a turtleneck sweater (not for work, just thought it was cute) and six pairs of nylons. I *think* that is it. But I did pretty well for $300, no? <.g>

Then, tonight we went to the Bulls game. We had good seats, yo. Fourth row behind the Bulls' bench, kind of near the basket. They lost, but it was fun anyway. =)

Tomorrow, I am going back down to Champaign to move out. Sadness!

And guess what? Aarti is coming to Florida!! I am SO excited. I'm sad she can't go to India, but I'm looking forward to Florida muchly. Whee!!! Plans are coming together and I leave in..... what day is it? I think I leave in five days! Whooooo!!!

December 25, 2002

Merry Christmas!

Hope everyone had a wonderful day. I sure did. It SNOWED! We had a White Christmas, which I wanted so badly. Heehee. Very exciting.

Last night was wonderful. Christmas Eve is our big celebration. We don't do presents or anything, but it's my mom's big dinner, we do a little treasure hunt, read The Night Before Christmas, do the Christmas play, sing carols... it's a lot of fun. We had a larger crowd than usual, but everyone enjoyed it. Then we went to the candlelight church service, which was very nice. I love "Silent Night," which we sang with candles for the second time that evening. <.g>

Today was nice as well. I got a digital camera! So I can take lots and lots of pictures in Florida. ;) I got many gift certificates to clothes stores to buy professional outfits for work. Blah. Not that I don't like the gifts, I just don't want to wear professional outfits at work. Lol. I'm not a "suit and tie" (even though no tie for me) kind of person. I'll survive. Then my parents bought us tickets to see Stomp tomorrow at the Shubert. Yippee! I'm very excited. That'll be a lot of fun.

One of the best things this holiday was getting to know my aunt's new husband. She was married to him when I was very young, and just got remarried to him on Thanksgiving. I'm sad that I missed out on almost twenty years of knowing him, because he's a great guy. He kept pictures of my sister and me from when we were teeny-tiny. My mom said he really adored us when we were young... he must have, because he divorced my aunt and lost contact completely with our family, and yet held onto pictures. And then he gave my sister and me a great compliment on our singing of Christmas carols last night (I know descants and harmonies to most of the songs from choir, and have taught Jess over the years). *giggle* So sweet.

Such a great couple days, though. I'm sad that it's over! I'm watching Fiddler on the Roof, which I love, and then Jess, my mom and I are going to watch Lilo and Stitch, which I got for Christmas.

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!

December 24, 2002

Christmas Eve Eve

December twenty-fourth, 9pm Eastern Standard Time, from here on in I shoot without a script...

That's what I always think of when I hear December 24th. Rent.

Anyway. Today was a long day. I woke up with a headache, as seems to happen here. My bed is not as comfortable as I would like it to be. =/ But it's all good now. I spent a couple hours trying to get my computer all set up. I found a Christmas background (just in time for the holidays <.g>) and got some pictures to create a screen saver. I also figured out Outlook. Whew. Thanks, Shelley! I now have all of my email addresses being pulled into Outlook, set up folders, and am DETERMINED to organize better than I did on my old computer. <.giggle> My Deleted folder will not be the catch-all. Lol.

I started tackling the organization of my room. Ack. What a project! I took EVERYTHING out of my closet and cleaned it out completely. Never meant to make you cry but tonight, I'm cleanin' out my closet. Ha ha. That was an all day project. I ended up with two bags of garbage and three bags of clothes to donate to Am Vets. Amazing. It's SO organized now, it kills me. Ha! I somehow managed to create the illusion that I have both a clean room and a clean desk. Really, truly amazing. <.g>

It's very odd to think I'm moving in here. For, like, a very long time. When I was putting things away, I fell into my usual "stash it here for the short amount of time I'll be here" mode. Then I realized that I'm HERE. I'm here and I'm staying, and I need to put things away in a location that they can claim as their own for a good long time. It's a strange feeling.

Then tonight, I went to dinner with Emily, Frank, Kim, John, Meghan, Tammy, Jamie, Craig, Dorothy, Erik and Gen. It was SO GOOD to see everyone again!! Congratulations, also, to Tammy and Dorothy, who both also graduated this December. And much-belated congrats to Em, Frank, Kim, John, Jamie and Gen, who all graduated last May.

It's awfully late. Tomorrow is another big day. I should sleep. Hope everyone has a WONDERFUL Christmas!

December 23, 2002

I'm a graduate

Well, it's over. College is over.

The ceremony was nice. Small. I was second. Thank goodness I wasn't first. I hate being first. The girl behind me almost fell down the stairs, and almost took me with her. Oops. She also about took my shoe off. But once we got past that, everything went smoothly. <.g> I only knew about a dozen people, but three of them graduated high school with me, and I hadn't seen them in forever. That was cool. One girl was a really good friend of mine in junior high and high school, and I kind of lost touch with her in college.

So after the ceremony, I moved out about half my stuff. I brought my computer home, because I thought I wouldn't be getting my new computer until January 2nd. Surprise, surprise, it's here! I'm using it! A flat-panel screen, some snazzy-looking speakers, all black and sleek and fast and new and I LOVE it! Of course it is scary as all heck, because I don't know how to use most of it. I have some programs I need to install and a LOT to figure out. But Wheeee!! Excitement! Of course, I didn't have time to get anything off of my old computer. And it's not hooked up. One of these days (maybe when my sister goes back to school and I can borrow her desk and internet connection) I will hook it up and email myself all the *good* stuff. Ha ha.

I got lots of wonderful gifts. I got a bracelet from my mom's brother and his family. It's a dream bracelet, and each stone means something. My cousins spent an hour picking it out. So sweet. I also got one share of stock in Disney! SO COOL! It's going to come framed to me, soon. They were backed up, what with Christmas and all. <.g> But I can't wait! I got some charms for my bracelet and a Dr. Seuss book (Oh, The Places You'll Go) from my sister, so sweet. And, of course, my computer, which I LOVE. Ahhh! Love it. Came with a printer/scanner, too, with a hook-up for a digital camera memory card, which my dad made sure to point out. So I think they ARE doing the split-the-cost-of-a-digital-camera with me for Christmas. <.g> My grandma also gave me this really nice Disney poster, which she apparently had to argue her way into, as it was a display somewhere. <.giggle> It's framed, now, SO cool. It's an MGM poster, with a quote from Walt and pictures and, yeah, really nice. I love my family, and I am so thankful for everything!

Today I need to clean, clean, clean my room. Eeep. Such a mess, what with all my stuff from school sitting in boxes and piles. =/ Time to get started on that.

December 22, 2002

Last night in Urbana

Well, folks, this is it. My last night here. It's kind of sad, really. I've slept well in this little town. Had a lot of good memories. Met a lot of great friends. Had some really awesome classes, some less so. It's been good.

Four and a half years ago, my plan was to attend the U of I for two years, and then transfer to UCLA. It was (and still is) my dream to live in California, even if only for a year or two. Plans change, though, and I did a little thing called the Disney College Program. I guess I believe that things are "meant to be," because the WDWCP set me slightly back, hours-wise, and I wouldn't have been able to transfer until midway through my junior year. By that point, I was comfortable here. So I stayed.

If I'd left, I would have missed out on a lot. Some wonderful roommates, mostly. I probably wouldn't have gone back to Orlando this summer if I'd been living in California, and I wouldn't have given up those month for anything.

So. I hadn't wanted to go to U of I in the first place. I was Michigan all the way, baby. But in the end, I got more education for my money here. I don't regret that decision. I hadn't wanted to stay at Illinois. But in the end, I don't regret that decision, either. I hope I never regret any of the big decisions I make in life.

Today, Aarti and I took pictures in our caps and gowns. We did goofy things, like climb up on the Alma Mater. We took nice, serious ones in front of the Gateway. Our fingers froze and the wind sent our tassles flying into our eyes and mouths. But it was good. Those are school landmarks, and I'm going to miss walking past them every day. I'm going to miss the Quad and the Union and the 70s glory that is the Psychology Building. I'll miss the unairconditioned, falling-apartness of Lincoln Hall, the peeling paint of Greg Hall, the too-freezing basement of the library. I'll miss being cooped up in 609 psych, listening to observations and struggling to transcribe them onto Macs. I'll miss stopping by Lance's basement office on Quad Day or just to chat, I'll miss his framed Jude Law picture that Meg and I gave him. I'll miss having Meghan and Aarti just a phone call and five-minute car ride away, I'll miss having Shelley in the next room over. I'll miss working at Assembly Hall, I'll miss mens basketball games and concerts and Sesame Street Live.

I'll miss the freedom of living on my own. I'm sure there are a ton more things I'm going to miss, like, say, my daily schedule of only having places to be an average of five or so hours of the day and thinking 7 am is early to wake up. But I'm glad to be done. There are a lot of things I won't miss, but I'd prefer not to think about them, because it's those missable things that made college wonderful.

Tonight, my parents, sister, grandparents, Amie and I went out to dinner. Then Jessica and I went with Sarah and Aarti and some of their friends to see a movie. It was the last time I'll do that kind of thing with them, because now everyone's scattering this way and that. I don't know when I'll see Amie again.

But tomorrow's the Big Day. We have lunch reservations at Silvercreek and the ceremony is at 4. And then I'll have graduated. Mission accomplished. Wow. Does it feel different to be a college graduate? I guess tomorrow, I'll let you know.

December 18, 2002

It's in the cards

Aarti is evil. Just thought I would state that for the record.

For Christmas, she got me a tarot card reading. Heehee! I was all scared, but this is what I learned:

  • There are a lot of changes for me. I will have a change of address soon, as well as a change in jobs. I will be making more money than I currently am (no crap... ha ha... right now I make $5 for about 3 hours a week...).
  • I travel soon (Florida, maybe? <.g>), and I will meet someone there. I will travel often in my life, as well.
  • I am a people-person. I do not like being by myself, so I surround myself with friends. There is jealousy around me now, and I need to turn my back on negativity and be friendly as to not lose the friends I do have.
  • I will be in my job for a long time (hmmm... not sure I like THAT prediction), and I will be happy in my job. I will be successful. I will invest wisely, but I should invest only small amounts at first, and then larger later. (Funny that I know NOTHING about investment, but I WILL be working for a bank, so I will learn.)

Now the fun stuff. Bwahaha
  • I will meet my soulmate by the end of 2003.
  • I will meet him in a big city.
  • He will be 2-4 years older than me, attractive (physically as well as personality-wise... she said many people like him).
  • He is not someone I have met before in this life.
  • He is intelligent and hard-working.
  • I knew him in past lives, at least twice before. In my past, I have been weak, though. I'm still somewhat weak now, but I am getting stronger in spirit, and because of my strength, this time it will work out between us.
  • I will be dating someone else when I meet him. He, too, will be dating someone else. We will become good friends, and then romance will blossom.
  • I will have children, eventually.
  • Love and money is important to me, and I will be lucky in both.

So, that was that. Not too shabby, eh? Heehee. Meghan also got her cards read. She will meet her soul mate in six years, and he will be 5-8 years older than her. He will love her unconditionally, but he will be afraid of committment, because he is currently in a messy relationship. She will get pregnant before she is married, and her pregnancy will be what causes him to commit. I think I like my reading better. <.g>

Potatoes are done...

... *I* am FINISHED.

Wooo!! I'm finshed with EVERYTHING. Took my final final today. Yes. It wasn't bad at all. Probably woulda gotten an A+ on it if I'd done any of the reading, and read through my notes more than once. I was at the not-really-caring point by this final. So, I took it without too much preparation, and I'm thinking I'll still pull off an A in the class. I also got my results paper back for my research methods class, and I got an A on that, as well. She also said, "You want to know your total? 96. Congratulations." I'm not sure if that was on the paper, the exam, or the class as a whole. I'd take a 96% on any one of those things, really, but for the class overall, that would make me really happy. That was a hard-ass class. But I got A's on all four parts of the paper and on the midterm, so... I'm not too worried.

And the other major thing I finished? Christmas shopping!! I'm done-done-done. I think. <.g> Gifts have been purchased and wrapped. Except for the two that are at home... a small part of my dad's gift, and my grandma's gift. They still need to be wrapped. But everything else is all pretty on the chair by our tree. =) I'm still finishing up making CD's as part of Amie's gift, but I'm seeing her Saturday, and that's something I can do here, without leaving my house and facing the wrath of the mall.

But, yes, feeling all accomplished. <.g>

December 16, 2002

New BMU video

Yes, ANOTHER blog from me. Goodness gracious. I need to stop. This is out of hand. Really, it is.


You've gotta see this. The word on the street is that JC didn't like the version of "Blowin' Me Up" that got premiered on TRL, so he re-edited it and "leaked" this one to the web. Which I think is adorable. Our boy really knows how to "work" the internet to his advantage! Anyway, this version is SO much better. Small changes, but it comes together much more nicely, gets rid of the goofy "uh-uh-uh" part, and has an adorable ending. *wink, wink*

If it's looking like a freeze-frame show instead of a nice, smooth video, try changing the bandwidth to 128 or 56.

Oo, real quick

Oh, for crying out loud, FOUR. I'm spamming my own blog. This is getting ridiculous. But I JUST remembered. <.giggle>

I finally, finally got a call back from the woman at MGM Scheduling. Whew. BIG sigh of relief. I was starting to worry. She was actually quite pleasant, which surprised me after what I have heard about her. I'm on the schedule to work the 2nd from 11-9. ::blink:: That's ten hours. Yeesh! I wanted a piddly little 8- or even 6-hour shift. Lol. Because Kate is a lazy butt who wanted to work simply so that she could get her ID back and get into the parks for free. <.g> Nah, it'll be good to be back. Although the only manager left is Laura, and she pretty much keeps to Mama Melrose's, and there are very few regular cast members I still know. Jessica was giving me the rundown today. So, sadness. And double sadness, Brandi's last day is the 31st. She's cutting her program short a couple days. So really, I'm just working with Jessica. Which will be fun, so I won't complain. =)

Woman at scheduling said she wasn't making up the schedule for the 6th yet, so to call her when I got in to Florida and she'd put me on at TSPP. Except, I'm not sure I'll call. I think I'll just look when I go in to work, and if I AM on the schedule for the 6th, I'll work, and if not, I'll help C move in to wherever she's moving in to. <.g> If my working one day's fine with them, it's fine with me.

So. Hotel has been reserved. Plane tickets have been purchased. Work has been notified, and thusly, ID will be obtained. I'm golden, yo. I'M GOING TO FLORIDA!! Whooooo!!

I got shot

Three! In one day! Making up for this weekend, yo.

I was all responsible 'n stuff and I went and got my chicken pox vaccination. The rest of it. I'd gotten half of it junior year when I was working at the daycare center, and Maddison came down with what we THOUGHT was the chicken pox. I freaked out, got the first half of the vaccination right before Christmas break. Turns out it wasn't the chicken pox. I had to wait a month to get the second shot, and then I had to not be around babies for thirty days. Um... I worked in a daycare center. No way I could NOT be around babies for thirty days. So I put it off.

And put it off.

And put it off.

And now, with a week left as a student, I decided it was cheaper and easier to finish the darn thing now, even though I'd waited two years from the last one. Yeah, I'm a smart one. So I did it.

You know, things piercing my skin? Not so much loving that. Anything: paper cut, shot, huge major surgical procedure... it's all the same. The skin is a protective layer. It is not meant to be punctured, pierced, or otherwise invaded. I really don't like things going into my skin. I don't actually like watching things go into other people's skin, either. There was a guy across from me getting a flu shot. Couldn't watch. When she came at me with the needle, I had to squeeze my eyes shut and dig my nail into my thumb to distract myself. It's not the pain of the shot I detest, because, yes, it feels like just a pinch. My nail was more painful. It's the knowledge that something is going INTO my skin that gives me the willies. ::shudder::

But it's over. And I should be fully vaccinated against chicken pox now.

I'm rich!

Book buyback is the greatest system ever. I mean, yes, keeping my books could be a good thing. Most of them are interesting, and someday in my life I may want to reference something I learned in college. But for the most part, at this point, the money I get back for them is more important. I have finished with three books. I spent $65.08, $65.39 and $61.15 on them respectively. I have gotten $42.75, $43.25 and $44.75 back, respectively. Dude. Usually if you get 50% buyback, you done good. Woohoo! I'm excited. I can buy Christmas presents now. Always a good thing. <.g> Sell one more book back and I think I'll be able to afford all the presents I have left on my list to buy. If not, I'll have to wait until I deposit my paycheck, but yes. Christmas shopping WILL get done.

My plans for the rest of the week:
Tonight: Call Amie, pay rent. RELAX.
Tomorrow: CHRISTMAS SHOPPING! And meeting with Amie?
Wednesday: Spend the morning studying for final, take final. Then RELAX and maybe pack some.
Thursday: To Eastern to visit Tammy
Friday: Continue packing
Saturday: Amie again? And the fam is coming down in preparation for graduation. Dinner 'n all.
Sunday: I walk. Wow. Four and a half years and my college experience will be OVER.

studying like a mad fool

I'm. So. Tired. Really, I can't even remember what I've spent the last couple of days doing, but I'm exhausted and just want to sleep. <.sigh>

Friday. Friday, Friday, Friday. I can't remember Friday. Ohhh, yes. I went to my review for perception (waste of time) and then to Meghan's to play Trivial Pursuit. <.g> That was fun. I love that game, even though I'm not teriffic at it. And we watched How The Grinch Stole Christmas (the cartoon), Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and then a NEWER Charlie Brown Christmas special. 'Twas fun. THEN I watched a special on Madame Tussaud, which was very cool. Amazing how they make those wax figures. They were doing the Michelle Kwan one, and yeah, amazing.

On Saturday, I got up early and read, read, read. I really think I must have done something on Saturday, but I don't think I did. I had Chinese food and didn't take a shower until 6:30. <.giggle> Amy was supposed to come and we were supposed to go out with Dustin and Meghan and Amy's friend Jonathan, but the fog was really bad on the country roads so she couldn't come. =( It was sad, but I understand.

So instead, Meghan, Aarti and I went to see Drumline. Woohoo!! I LOVED it. The kid was perfect for the role. I wanted to smack him. Lol. But it was great. It was a midnight show and the theatre was packed, and the audience was SO into it. So much fun. <.g> Meg and I were the only white girls in there, though. Heehee. But I enjoyed it greatly and, if Tammy still wants to see it, I'll gladly see it again. =)

So Saturday night, didn't end up falling asleep until almost 4. Oops. So yesterday I got up about 11 and studied some more. Studied all the way up until 3, when I thought I was supposed to meet a girl from my class at the union. Turns out we were meeting at 4, so I just studied some more by myself there until she came. We were there until 7, and then I went out to dinner with Meg and Greg. John was SUPPOSED to come, but he totally overbooked his night (typical John), so we stopped in and chatted with him (and I saw my RA from freshman year.... WEIRD), and then went on our merry way out to dinner.

Came home, studied some more, went to bed... got up at 6 freaking o'clock.... TOO early, to study some more for my final at 8. Whew. That's DONE. I don't think I did all that well on it... totally BSed a couple of questions, but as long as I passed, I'll get a B in the class. Not too bad.

Came home from that, dumped ALL the info from that exam, and started (yes, started) studying for my 1:30 final. That also could have gone better (and probably would have if I'd started studying more than two hours before the exam). I think I got a B on the exam, which, if all pans out, will get be somewhere between a B+ and an A in the class. Not too terrible. As long as I get a B, I'm happy.

Okay, marathon post. That's what I get for going three days without posting. ONE more final, and then graduation Sunday, and I am NO LONGER A STUDENT. Eeek!

December 13, 2002

Nine Days

Eeep. I have nine more days in Urbana. I've lived here for four and a half years (minus summers and one teeny-tiny semester in 2000 <.g>). It's a-gonna be strange not to be back here come January. But think about it. It've spent about 1/5 of my life here!

Had my Research Methods final today. So that's two classes down, three more to go. Two exams Monday, one Wednesday, and graduation next Sunday. It doesn't feel like a huge thing. Is it a huge thing, to graduate college? People are very "Oh, CONGRATULATIONS! That's EXCELLENT!" and I'm all "Yeah? Well, it had to end eventually... now's as good a time as any." Ya know? I don't say that. I smile and say "Thanks. I'm excited." Whatever. I dunno. I know I've stressed out over school and there have been times when I've worked my tail off, but really, it hasn't been that hard. I've kind of sailed through, I feel, and I almost wish I'd had to put more effort into it. I'm not saying I'm this genius who never has to study or anything, because goodness knows I'm not, but I just don't feel like I've put enough blood sweat and tears into it to be really, truly giddy over getting my degree.

Maybe it comes from not being overly giddy about my job. I kind of feel like "Eh, it's a job. I'll get good experience and move on to what I really want to do." I think Disney kind of tainted it for me, because I feel like I'd have been a lot more excited if I hadn't had to make this awful decision. And now I'm missing out on this internship, which makes me so, so sad. But I will get good experience, and I will make money, which I can save, and I will move on to my dream job in a few year's time. I will.

But right now, I have to go to a review session for Perception. Woohoo. Watch me get a parking ticket my last week here, because the school lots are available to park in starting at 5, and my review session starts at 5, so I'm going to park there about five minutes early. Would be just my luck. Ah well. Maybe i'll sell back a book and get a couple dollars so that I can go out with Amy and Dustin and Meghan and Amy's friend tomorrow night. Yes, that would be good.

BMU Premiere

I have a final in, yes, seven hours and forty-two minutes, folks. WHAT am I doing up?

Just got home from studying at the coffee shop. For five and a half hours. And I'm getting up early to study some more. UGH. Why do I CARE? Why? I'm graduating in a week. I have a job. These grades count for nothing, and yet, I can't give up. I can't not put in 110%.

Went to lunch with Amy today. Yay Amy! Heehee. 'Twas fun.

The (She's) Blowin' Me Up video premiered today. I had a lot of thoughts. They're in More, if you care. ;) Step this way... --->

First off, I'm going to start with what I didn't like. Then there's going to be a huge BUT, and then I'll say what I DID like. *g* Just so y'all don't get halfway through and go "well, jeez, she hated it." I didn't. Here's what I did think.

I'm not sure that, if I didn't already love the song, the video would make me a fan of it. There are certain parts I loved, but as a whole, I'm not sure it came together.

Everything was a bit random. The song is all over the place and wild, so it kind of fit with the mood, but I think there could have been an overarching theme to tie it together. We had clips from the movie, the diner, the demolition derby, and dancing around in the junkyard (at the demolition derby?). Each by itself could have been a really cool setting. Together, I didn't see the connection.

I could have either done without the movie clips, or tied the video into it more. *shrug* Not sure how, exactly, but that's why I'm a Speech Com/psych major and not a flim major. ;)

I have held off on stating any opinions of Tara, and I'm really not going to start now, since I don't know a thing about her. Opinions of her character aside, I don't think she's a tremendous actress. I could play hard-to-get better than she could, and I. can't. act. Everyone beforehand talked about this wonderful chemistry between JC and Tara, and on his side, it was there. I was feelin' him. But from her, I was getting nothing. I can't really put my finger on it, but I think that her character was pivitol to bringing the video together smoothly. If we'd had a really dazzling spark between JC and the female lead, all the rest would have been commentary. The craziness would have happened around them, which I think was the point.

BUT (told you it was coming)

I really, really love dance sequences. A lot. I thought his choreography (whether he did actually do it himself or not) was very cool, and just off-the-wall enough to match the "vibe" (word of the day, apparently) of the song. I didn't even mind the randomness of drumsticks in a junkyard.

There was a good mixture of things that made me shake my head, smile and say "oh, JC..." and things that made me pick my jaw off the floor, wipe up the drool, and say "God, is that hot." I especially liked him revving up to put the pedal to the metal. *g* And his vocals are strong enough to carry off whatever randomness is going on around him. I'm glad he actually got to sing a bit in there, instead of the whole focus being on the "plot" of the video.

Overall, I liked it. I think I liked the second half more than the first. I probably liked it more because it's JC, and because I love the song to begin with, but I'll get giddy over seeing it come on MTV, and I'll vote my little heart out to keep it on TRL. Though, I really, really can't wait for him to come out with another song that's his, and not influenced by a movie, and see what he does with that. What kind of video might come out of him.

And, as if I haven't babbled on enough (you still reading? *g*), I can't WAIT to see Drumline. It looks like a really fun movie. I'm such a sucker for that kind of movie. Wheee!

December 12, 2002

Wax Museum

NSYNC's opening at the Wax Museum in NY was last night. There are pictures! Whee! There are 84 of them here. I hope they don't mind I'm linking to them. Eeep. You have to manually change the numbers, though. I might have saved 25 out of the 84 to my little no-memory computer. <.giggle>

Ooo, smart!Presidential!JC is SO sexy

The group with...the group

The rest I'm linking to, so again, hope the owner of this site doesn't get cranky... I figured I don't get a whole lot of traffic here, so they shouldn't be getting TOO many hits from me, right?
JC checking out Joey's shirt
Joey, JC and JC
Chris kissing, well, Chris

December 11, 2002

Brian! On West Wing!

Watching West Wing, and there are carolers, because it's a Christmas episode. Yes. So... I KNOW one of them! I may have jumped out of my chair and screamed "Oh my GOD that's BRIAN!" really, really loudly. I may have scared Shelley. But Gen! Brian! Did you know he was going to be on??

I went to high school with Brian. We were in Madrigals together, and choir and worked on the plays. And I went to school with him when I was really little, too. Wow. He ended up going to Yale, I think, and I haven't talked to him in probably two years (since I ran into him outside of Panera one Christmas break), but I see his mom a lot when I go back home. That's just really cool. To me, anyway. <.g> A friend of mine, on West Wing. Wow.

Edit: If any of you taped it and care at all, about halfway through, the carolers are back, and he's on the left side of the screen, and then when they bring sandwiches, he jumps up kind of excited for one. <.g>

Edit #2: News from home (okay, we're from suburban Chicago. We get excited about these things. <.g>): the director of WW is a HUGE fan of the a cappella group Brian sings in at Yale. Invited them to be in an episode. Cool.

Language lesson!

I have a new friend. *g* She's from Finland, and she's teaching me how to say things in FINNISH! See:

Hei, minun nimeni on Kate = Hi, my name is Kate.

JCllä on jyrisevä ääni. = JC has a rumbly voice (Shelley had on an interview and all I could her was rumble, rumble, rumble.)

Aivan = Exactly

saari = island

Haluan joutua autiolle saarelle JCn kanssa = I want to be stranded on a deserted island with JC.


Jag heter Kate och jag kommer från Chicago. = My name is Kate and I'm from Chicago

Jag älskar glittriga danspojkar. = I love sparkly danceboys (If I want to change that to like, it's "Jag tycker om glittriga danspojkar.")

Verkligen = really (or truly)

Ö = island (really, it does!)

Jag vill bli strandat på en odebodd ö med JC = I want to be stranded on a deserted island with JC.

December 10, 2002

Sometimes, teachers suck.

Today was my last day of work at Assembly Hall. =( Sadness. I'm going to miss it. I took my nametag. At least they WON. It was against Eastern Illinois, which is not a Big Ten school, but you know, in-state rivalries and stuff. So it was fun to watch them win.

Ugh. So today, had to pick up my portfolio from narrative writing. First, let me lay out the class requirements. We had to write three original stories to be workshopped by the class, and then either a fourth story or a substantial revision of one of the three (worth 70%). We also had our Daybooks (worth 10%), which contained story ideas, drafts of our stories, and eighteen Daybook Entries, which ranged from describing a room in detail to researching a town and writing a story based on that town's history. Those are the things we turned in... the other 20% was class participation. Which consisted of having read and substantially commented on 3 student stories each class meeting, as well as having read stories in our course packet.

There is one daybook entry I didn't do (the town one). I DID read everyone's story and comment constructively (and a hell of a lot more than most people commented on mine, I'll tell ya that), and I put in a substantial amount of effort into my stories. I never wrote them last-minute (as I know a lot of people did) and I even agonized over most of them, because I didn't want to turn in a crap story for everyone to read. I wrote four, and THEN revised two of them to re-turn in with my portfolio. So I'm thinking that, while I may not get an A on my daybook portion of the class, the meat of the class is where I put in the most effort.

So he gives me it all back and tells me my grade. B on the daybook. Okay, I thought I'd done about 90% of the work (A-), but whatever. Fair enough. A- on participation (also fair enough). BIG FREAKING C on my stories. A C! The freak?? He said "Well, you didn't turn in a revision." No, but I turned in a FOURTH story, which he has in the syllabus as well as had said MULTPILE times was okay, and THEN I went ahead and revised two of my other stories ANYWAY. He looked at them. One of them he agreed was a substantial revision that had greatly improved the story. The other he said made the story worse. That it had been a cop-out revision and didn't work. So he scratched out the C and gave me a B- on my stories. I'm so pissed.

He said from the beginning that narrative writing is very subjective, which is why one of our daybook entries was to assign ourselves a grade and back it up. I'd said I thought I deserved an A/A-, because of all the reasons I've stated above. I put in more effort into this class than most of my others. But a B, an A- and a B- add up to pretty much a straight B. Which is NOT the end of the world, I know, and it's a 100-level class not in my major, so it really won't effect anything, but how could he give me a B-/C on stories I obviously put a lot of effort into? I don't CARE if he didn't like them, that shouldn't have been the point. There's a lot of "classic" literature I think is crap, personally. HATED The Scarlet Letter. But I recognize its worth as literature. And even if he thought my stories were crap, that's HIS opinion. He should be grading on effort and improvement, not on how much he enjoyed what he read. Grrr.

Okay, end bitch session. Just aggrevates me. Blah.

It's OFFICIALLY official, now. *g* Because even though I may have been saying that it was official, it wasn't. I finally got ahold of Disney this afternoon and told them I wasn't coming down. Oh, how it pained me to do that. She was very understanding and assured me the position WOULD be offered to someone else, which made me feel better. I'd feel awful if someone didn't get a chance at the internship because of me.

BMU may or may not premiere today. I may or may not catch it on tape if it does, since I didn't want the whole of TRL and therefore just set it from 3-3:30.

I have to work tonight. LAST night at Assembly Hall. Sadness. It's a basketball game, so I don't even get to go out on something super-cool. Ah well, it's my second men's game this year, and the first that isn't an exhibition. So, yay. And I may see Charles, since he said he was thinking of coming.

Okay, off to class. Only three more days of this!

December 09, 2002

Billboard Awards

I have just been reminded that my dear friend Gen has a blog. How this slipped my mind, I do not know. I'm so sorry, Gen!! And she's been posting regularly this December, so WHOO! Check out her Corner of the Sky. *hugs*

Watching the Billboard Awards. Can I just say that I'm so happy to see JC? I've missed him. He's popped up here and there, but still. Yay for JC! Of course, they didn't let him talk much... he just stood there and looked pretty, but you know what? That's fine. I can't be picky. He laughed, and when he looks happy, I'm happy. Heee.

Justin sounded good. Poor guy with a gimp foot. But he really can sing, and live. Always nice when people are able to sound good live (unlike, *ahem* certain other people who performed tonight). And the thing that made me grin like a dork? Someone's mom got to play violin behind Justin Timberlake. How fun would that be? She was cute, whoever she was *g*. The whole thing was very tasteful.

Now I'm looking forward to the supposed premiere of Blowin' Me Up tomorrow on TRL, then I'm REALLY looking forward to JC's appearance on Thursday, and a little Justin on Friday's TRL will just top off the week, now, won't it?

But I forgot to watch Bubblegum Babylon. Again. Ah well. Was it any good?

*big yawn*

I am completely and utterly exhausted. Maybe I'll take a nap. The Billboard Awards are on tonight, so I have to get up in time for 7:00 if I do go to sleep.

Aarti and I went to Dos Reales again. I need to get my fill in before the end of the semester. <.g> But my "friend" was working again. We started out with one waiter, but after that one took our orders, my Friend was our waiter. He's kinda creepy and he ALWAYS wiggles his way into taking my table whenever I go in and he's working. At least I've learned to make it worth my while... today we got free stuff. It cracks me up when we've ordered things (such as appetizers) and the bill comes with ONLY our dinner orders on them. <.giggle>

Okay, so trying to figure out what to do over New Years. I have SO MUCH that I've been thinking about, between school and graduating and getting job offers and deciding WHICH job offers ot accept (I got another call today... d'oh! But this one I'm just calling back to tell him no <.g>).... my brain is on overload!!

Good Video Morning

I remember last year, there were a bunch of videos I really liked, and I used to see a good lot of them in the mornings. I always thought that if I saw all my favorite videos, it was going to be a good day. I haven't thought about that in a long time. Ha ha. But if I go by that, today will be a good day. I just saw Christina's video for "Beautiful," which I hadn't seen before. I love that song. Now I love that video, too. Gosh, it almost made me cry. I also saw "Cry Me a River," which I've still got mixed feelings on. I love that song, too, though, so I was happy to see the video. And now I'm watching Avril's "I'm With You," which I don't like as much as far as the video goes, but I do like the song.

Have a great day, everyone!

December 08, 2002

Christmas is coming!

I have gotten about half my Christmas shopping done. Go me! I have to wait for the other half until my parents pay me back for the orthodontist I keep paying for. Eeep. I can't wait to have a "real" paycheck. Seriously. But enough about that! After Christmas shopping was the OTHER GUYS! My last OG concert. Sadness. They were very, very good. As usual. And my favorite Guy is still in the group. I really thought he'd graduated. I'll have to ask Meghan, because I SWEAR he said at the concert last year that it was his last. But maybe not. Ha. But I love Kyle's voice. He really has the greatest voice. They did a Motown medley, which was just great. I wonder if they'll have this year's CDs on sale at all before I graduate. Otherwise I'll just have to come back and visit and get me one later.

After the concert, Aarti and I had a slumber party. heehee! It was so fun. We made pesto and cream cheese dip and hot chocolate and got into our PJ's and watched movies. Heehee. Then, in the morning, I made chocolate chip pancakes, which we used to do ALL the time last year. I missed that!

Last night was Martina McBride: The Joy of Christmas. It was really good! It was much more than a concert. There were street scenes set up and her stage was beautiful. She brought people from te audience up in the second half to be in her Christmas Caroling scene, and the whole audience was supposed to sing along. They did... I wanted to, too, but being in that uniform makes me feel like I can't do that stuff. Ah well. She also had all these kids come on stage to read Twas The Night Before Christmas, and then they sang kiddie Christmas songs. SO cute. She has a GORGEOUS voice. She sang O Holy Night (which is my FAVORITE Christmas song) for her finale, just HER. No instruments, no back-up singers, nothing. Just her voice, and it was AWESOME. People were crying. It's amazing how her voice could fill up that entire arena. Wow. I was very impressed. Maybe I'll buy her CD. ;)

Then after the concert, Shelley's friends Jon and Dave were here. We went to their friend Billy's frat, and then to CO's. I was not a fan of Billy. Jon and Dave were really nice, though. But Billy was kind of a jerk. The stereotypical frat guy who gets drunk ALL the time. He was shouting MEAN things at people on the street. =( I did NOT like him. And CO's is not my favorite bar. It's dirty and loud and hoochies go there. We just sat and watched people and listened to the music, which I could have done at Legends WITHOUT paying cover. Grrr. I can't say I had an awful time, I just wish Billy hadn't been there (and hadn't been FORCING the guys to drink... that just seemed... yuck) and I wish we'd been at a different bar. It would have been fun just to go out and hang for a while.

Then Billy took them to Tonic, which is NOT a bar I want to go to. I have never been there, but back a few years ago when it was Orchid, my friends went and they were scared. It's 100% techno, Ecstasy is passed around like candy and it's just not the kind of environment I want to be in. I am much more laid back, and I like music I can sing and dance to and just hang out with my friends. And it had another cover, which Iw asn't too keen on paying. So we arranged to meet them outside when the bar closed, and Shelley and I went to the coffee house and I had a mocha. Since I was driving, I hadn't had anything to drink at all, so I thought I deserved a treat. ;) When we went back to Tonic at our prearranged time... no guys. We waited until 10 minutes after they were supposed to meet us, and still nothing, and it was FREEZING outside, so we left. We haven't heard from them yet. Ah well. I just feel bad because Shelley had been planning this for a looooong time, and they just disappeared on her. Maybe they'll come back when they pick up their car, wihch is parked across the street. *g*

And now, I should probably write up my results paper for my shyness/self esteem stuff. I have it written already, but I have changes and stuff I need to make. Therefore, not much motivation, since it shouldn't take that long.

December 06, 2002

Turning in my mouse ears

Well, I did it. I decided which job to take. It was probably the hardest decision of my life, so far. Especially since whichever I chose would potentially lead me on such divergent paths. I think the thing that tipped the scale was that, if I took Disney, I would have six months of an awesome job and I'd get to spend it with a good friend, but after that, I'd be struggling. I can't see supporting myself on part-time Disney pay, and I'd probably end up killing myself with multiple jobs while I tried desperately to work my way up into a "better" job. I'm not sure I'm passionate enough about working there to do that.

If I take the bank job, I see it as a continuation of my education. I will spend a year or two being trained in sales, marketing and management. When that two years is over, I will have experience in all of those things, which I can apply to any number of careers. At that point, I can go back to Disney and apply for that "better" job, without having had to bust my butt on multiple low-paying jobs to get there. I think, for me, this is the best route to take. And Carolyn, perhaps we will work together yet. =) I don't think I've congratulated you officially in my blog, either, so CONGRATULATIONS, C!

It kills me to turn down the Guest Relations, though, because it's really a compliment to have gotten it. They interview all over the United States, and Epcot gets second go at their interns (after MK, which I wouldn't really want to work at, anyway). Therefore, not only was it a compliment to be picked, but it was a compliment to be picked by Epcot. It's really hard to turn down something like that. But Carolyn, you'll have to let me live vicariously through you. Good luck, my friend, and I'll state for the record that, even though I chose to turn down Disney, I'm very, very jealous that you get to have this experience. *g* Enjoy it for all it's worth!!

For two days, the only offer I'd gotten was with the bank. So for two days, I didn't have a choice, and I'd have just gone and done that. And if I hadn't had this other offer with the bank, I'd have taken Disney in an INSTANT. There would be no question about it. So maybe being given this decision to make, being given the choice, was meant to make me seriously evaluate my life and the direction I want it to take. So I've done that. Now I just have to take a deep breath and hope that I made the right decision.


I would rather watch commercials than the video for "Hey Baby."

I'm not feeling so good this morning. My tummy's all not-so-good. But I'm hungry. It's one of those great contradictions in life.

I don't want to go outside in the awful cold. Walking to class just gets painful.

I'm FULL of complaints this morning. Blah. Sorry.

In happier news, OTHER GUYS tonight! Wheee! I'll have to buy tickets sometime today. My Big Fat Greek Wedding is also playing at Greg Hall for $2, but it's at something like 7 and 9:30, and OGs are at 8, so... not sure I'm gonna make MBFGW. Sadness. Been planning on that one for weeks. =( Ah well. I've seen it, what, five times now? Lol. Maybe I'll walk next door (OGs are at Lincoln hall) after the concert and watch whatever's left of the movie. *g* I've seen it enough times that I won't be missing much by missing the first half. Lol.

Also have to call the woman from the bank back. To accept the job or not to accept the job? That is the question. Eeep!

And... Aarti got a new blog! Another one. Heehee. But this one, she's blogging on pretty regularly. So, Yay Aarti!

December 05, 2002

It's SAD when they stop carding you at 22.

Aarti and I went wine tasting. A jolly good time was had by all. Both. There were two of us.

I think I've decided that I definitely like red wine a little bit better than white. Although it probably would have been a good idea to eat something since my bowl of cereal at breakfast and my granola bar at lunch time... I'm feeling the wine. I'm not a big drinker, normally, so it really hit me, I think. The woman liked us, so she was giving us nearly full glasses instead of the 1/3 or 1/2 she was supposed to. So, five glasses in an hour and a half? I'm feeling all warm and snuggly and smiley right now.

Anyway. I can see the college student in me, in that the cheapest bottle (Dubeouf Syrah) was one of my favorites. On the other hand, it was very un-college-student-like me for my other favorite to be the most expensive bottle (Marques De Caceres Reserva, doesn't that just sound expensive?). We also had Endna Valley Chardonnay, which was okay, Chappellet Dry Chenin Blane, which I really liked, and Echelon Cab. Sauv. (it's abbreviated on the sheet... don't know enough about wine to know what those words are in full), which I didn't like all that much. But it was a lot of fun.

And oh! They're playing "Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays" on the radio! At home, there's a station that's playing All Christmas Music, All Season Long. I listened all week when I was at home for some NSYNC and nada. Here, we don't have a Christmasy station, but the regular station's playing the boys! Wheeee!! And perhaps the wine is making this more exciting than it actually is.

December 04, 2002

Life decisions... *sigh*

I feel like Ross on Friends. Disney (Rachel) vs. The Bank (Julie). Pros and cons. Ready, steady, GO!

Cut to More because there's a really lot of stuff here to supposedly help me decide what to do with my life, and it probably only interests me.

PROS - If I Work for the Bank:
+ I'll get paid a living wage. Very important.
+ Benefits are good.
+ I'll get experience in sales.
+ I'll get experience in management.
+ I'll get experience in marketing.
+ Not to mention, I'll get experience working in a financial institution.
+ I can live at home and save almost every penny I make.
+ A lot of my friends are in the Chicago area.
+ I kind of stumbled into this job. And they offered it to me.
+ Almost a hundred people interviewed for these positions. I have no finance/business background. And they offered it to ME.

PROS - If I Work for Disney:
+ It's a damn cool job, and one I only really fantasized about when I first started working at Disney in 2000.
+ I know Orlando. I've lived there twice, I know my way around. I had places I went about five nights out of every week, like Tuesdays: Jellyrolls or, once or twice the Roxy; Wednesdays: hang out with people from work; Thursdays: Comedy Warehouse or something else at PI (what else did we do on Thursdays? I feel like we did something, but can't think of it.); Fridays: Bowling and karaoke in Kissimmee; Saturdays: Blue Stone Circle at Margaritaville. Occasionally House of Blues on Sundays, but techno's not as much my thing. I had a routine down, and I loved my routine.
+ I have really good friends there.
+ Hundreds of people interviewed for this internship. I got it.
+ I'd be working in the same job, at the same park, as Carolyn. I'd live with her, too.
+ I love Florida. This summer, I swore I was moving back for good. We'll say it's sort of a dream of mine, to live there.
+ Weather's nice.
+ I really, really wanted this job.
+ It's DISNEY.

CONS - If I Work for the Bank
- It's not Disney.
- I have no finance/business background. I don't know if I'll be good at this job.
- I don't know if I'll be good at the sales aspect of it.
- I might get tied in to Chicago, to working in a bank, etc.
- I might not go after my "dreams" because I might get comfortable. I NEVER want that to happen.

CONS - If I Work for Disney:
- Pays very little.
- No benefits, unless I get hired full-time, which wouldn't happen until at the earliest, June.
- No guarantee for future full-time employment.
- Would have to completely support myself. On very little pay.
- Won't build seniority with Disney until hired as full-time.
- Skills may or may not be transferable to other careers. Or the transferable skills are probably ones I already possess.
- Already worked for Disney twice; will potential future employers look down on a third time?
- Would not be insured for a Very Long Time. Or would have to buy probably very expensive independent insurance.

*sigh* I know what the Practical Thing to Do is (why am I capitalizing random words?). I also know that, if I didn't have the bank offer, I would be in Florida faster than you could say "Pixie Dust." There would be no question. This summer, I was sure I'd move back. I have a couple dozen apartments around the Orlando area bookmarked on my computer. I guess Disney would fall under a "follow your heart" advice category. But the rest of me wonders if there aren't things more important than that. Surviving off my income being one of them. I could work a few years, get some real experience, and then look into moving down to Florida or out to California or somewhere. The question is, will I?

what to do, what to do?

I knew it would happen. If I hadn't had any job offers, I wouldn't have gotten the advanced internship with Disney. Now, I have to choose. Guest relations in Orlando or bank management in Chicago? One pays nothing, has no benefits, and is not guaranteed to result in any sort of full-time position; the other IS full-time, has pretty good benefits, and will allow me to live at home and save my pennies. Why am I having difficulty deciding which to take? <.sigh>

Half of me is bouncing around over having been offered the GR position; the other half is pretty much frozen in shock a bit stressed over having to decide. Makes sitting here mighty interesting, let me tell you.

Anyway. Decisions, decisions. I'll keep y'all updated. <.sigh>

December 03, 2002


Look, I dressed Wandering Aimlessly up for the holidays! Heehee. Color scheme doesn't really match, but that's okay. *g*

I did a Christmas survey. I love these. *g* Christmas is SO my favorite time of the year. It's long, though, so. You know the drill. (click on "More")

But. A la Carolyn, some highlights:

What movie or tv special do you have to watch in order to feel like it's officially Christmas? It's a Wonderful Life. Miracle on 34th Street doesn't hurt, either.

Favorite family tradition:
Christmas Eve. All of it. It's just my family, my mom's parents, and my dad's brother, his wife and their two little girls. We have the big meal, we always have a little scavanger hunt, we act out the Christmas play, and we sing carols. Then my uncle's family goes home and my family and my grandparents go to the 11:00 candelight service. And when we come home, it's Christmas!

Christmas music you associate with your childhood (artists/albums)
Mannheim Steamroller, George Winston "December," "Sesame Street Christmas" ('Gift of the Magi,' Bert and Ernie style!), "Cabbage Patch Christmas" (Cabbage Patch Kids, hangin' up their stockings, Cabbage Patch Kids, see them trimming the tree, it's the best time of year for the Cabbage Patch Kids, as they celebrate Christmas just like you and me!)

Current favorite Christmas CD
I love Christmas music. My Jazz and Blues Christmas mix CD, *NSYNC Home for Christmas, and Mannheim Steamroller are currently in my CD player. It's likely that those are the three that'll stay there for most of December.

Favorite traditional Christmas songs
"O Holy Night" is my very favorite. I used to be in a community choir all through school, and every year we got to sing it with a "professional" singer. That was always the most exciting part of our Christmas concert. *g* We also always sang "Carol of the Bells" and "Hallelujah Chorus" every year in choir, so those are favorites. I really like "The Holly and the Ivy," but the instrumental version.

Favorite non-traditional Christmas songs
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays - *NSYNC
Santa Baby - Eartha Kitt
Blue Christmas - Elvis
'Zat You, Santa Clause? - Louis Armstrong
Jingle Bells - Duke Ellington

What is your most vivid Christmas memory?
The year I was seven, my sister was five, and my cousin was four. We were doing the Christmas play; I was Mary, my cousin was Joseph, and my sister was the angel. My cousin refused to take off the She-Ra costume he'd found in our dress-up box, my sister was over-zealous and kept saying her lines early, and I decided that my stuffed Pink Panther made a better baby Jesus than the red-headed, pigtailed doll I was supposed to use (at least PP was a boy). My aunt was horrified, but it all worked out. *g*

Again, you can find this survey in full in the "More" section.

What movie or tv special do you have to watch in order to feel like it's officially Christmas? It's a Wonderful Life. Miracle on 34th Street doesn't hurt, either.

Presents opened Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
We get pajamas to open (and wear) on Christmas Eve, but the rest gets opened on Christmas morning.

How old were you the last time you had your picture made with Santa?
Not a clue. The only time I really REMEMBER getting my picture taken was when I was four and Santa came to our house. And my sister cried and cried because she was so scared. I've had my picture taken since then, but I don't remember.

How early (or late) are usually up on Christmas morning?
Whenever my sister and I wake up. We have to be at my aunt's by about 12:30, so we have to have enough time to do the whole Christmas morning thing, eat breakfast, all get ready, and drive 45 minutes. I'd say we usually get up no later than 8.

Are you able to sleep well on Christmas Eve?
I suppose so. I remember when I was little, never being able to fall asleep, but I think it's all been good lately. *g*

Favorite family tradition:
Christmas Eve. All of it. It's just my family, my mom's parents, and my dad's brother, his wife and their two little girls. We have the big meal, we always have a little scavanger hunt, we act out the Christmas play, and we sing carols. Then my uncle's family goes home and my family and my grandparents go to the 11:00 candelight service. And when we come home, it's Christmas!

Did you ever try to catch Santa?
No. I was pretty young when I stopped believing in Santa and, instead, got to do the Santa duties for my sister, so...

Did you look for your presents around the house?
No, I actually knew exactly where they were kept. We have an extra bedroom downstairs, and starting at about Thanksgiving, it's "Off Limits" until Christmas.

Did you ever open a wrapped present and wrap it back up?
Nope. I like surprises. I could have opened that door, had I felt so inclined, but I never did.

Did you leave treats for Santa? (if so what kind)
Yep. Still do. The traditional milk and cookies (gingerbread, snowball cookies, etc), and a carrot for the reindeer. Can't forget them!

Did you leave treats for the reindeer? (if so what kind)
I need to read ahead. Ha ha. Yes, we leave a carrot. Who the heck knows if reindeer eat carrots. They always did at our house, though!

Do you bake Christmas goodies? (what kind?)
Of course. Snowball cookies are a MUST (they're my favorite at any time of the year, but it's not Christmas without them). My grandpa's Scottish shortbread is also required to be in attendance.

Do you buy presents for your pets?
Yeah, Specks has a stocking and he gets kitty treats and usually a toy (which he doesn't play with much, now that he's OLD), but I think the best presents for him are A) having the Outdoors inside for an entire month (he's thrilled with the tree that's just for him to sit under), and B) wrapping paper to crawl under and peek out of. And play with. And crinkle. He loves wrapping paper. It's unfortunate when trying to wrap presents, but too adorable once they're unwrapped. *g*

If you could spend Christmas anywhere in the world (with your family or alone) where would you spend it?
I'm pretty much in love with the way we do it. I'm a traditionalist. We once spent Christmas in Los Angeles and it just wasn't the same, being in a hotel and all.

What do you wish you could do during the holiday season that you never get to?
Hmmm. Now that I'm Old, I wish I still had the get-up-and-go to go sledding. And someday I want to Skate on State (which is now no longer on State Street, but is in the new park they built...) in downtown Chicago.

Have you ever had a white Christmas?
I can only think of a handful of times when we didn't.

Can you ice skate?
I can, but I won't claim that I can do it well. I can't do anything fancy like go backwards or do twirls or jumps or anything, but forward around the rink I can handle.

Do you own a copy of "The Night Before Christmas?"
Yep. A couple, I think. We used to do this bag-passing game, where everyone stands in a circle and there are paper bags with little gifts in them. Someone reads the story, and everytime they say the word "the," we pass the bags. At the end, you open them and find out what you got. But since we started having the rather small Christmas Eve (just ten of us), we haven't done it in a few years.

Approximately how many presents will you buy this year?
Goodness. A lot. Well, a lot considering I don't have a very big family. *g*

How many will be mailed?
A couple.

Do you enjoy wrapping gifts?
Sometimes. Sometimes my sister and I will bring all the wrapping paper and ribbons and everything into my room, close the door, and put on either a Christmas movie or music and just have a wrapping party.

Christmas music you associate with your childhood (artists/albums)
Mannheim Steamroller, George Winston "December," "Sesame Street Christmas" ('Gift of the Magi,' Bert and Ernie style!), "Cabbage Patch Christmas" (Cabbage Patch Kids, hangin' up their stockings, Cabbage Patch Kids, see them trimming the tree, it's the best time of year for the Cabbage Patch Kids, as they celebrate Christmas just like you and me!)

Current favorite Christmas CD
I love Christmas music. My Jazz and Blues Christmas mix CD, *NSYNC Home for Christmas, and Mannheim Steamroller are currently in my CD player. It's likely that those are the three that'll stay there for most of December.

Early shopping or last minute?
Last minute, but I usually get it done before I go home for Christmas break. So it's not last-minute as in Christmas is tomorrow, but last minute in that I do during finals week, so it's "last minute" before I go home. I won't go NEAR Chicago area malls at Christmas time, and would much prefer our small (but pretty darn good) mall here.

Favorite traditional Christmas songs
"O Holy Night" is my very favorite. I used to be in a community choir all through school, and every year we got to sing it with a "professional" singer. That was always the most exciting part of our Christmas concert. *g* We also always sang "Carol of the Bells" and "Hallelujah Chorus" every year in choir, so those are favorites. I really like "The Holly and the Ivy," but the instrumental version.

Favorite non-traditional Christmas songs
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays - *NSYNC
Santa Baby - Eartha Kitt
Blue Christmas - Elvis
'Zat You, Santa Clause? - Louis Armstrong
Jingle Bells - Duke Ellington

Do you wear Christmas jewelry?
I wear my cross necklace on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, usually. I'm the small, unobtrusive jewelry type, so if I do, it's probably something very subtle. Little snowflake earrings, or something.

What is your most vivid Christmas memory?
The year I was seven, my sister was five, and my cousin was four. We were doing the Christmas play; I was Mary, my cousin was Joseph, and my sister was the angel. My cousin refused to take off the She-Ra costume he'd found in our dress-up box, my sister was over-zealous and kept saying her lines early, and I decided that my stuffed Pink Panther made a better baby Jesus than the red-headed, pigtailed doll I was supposed to use (at least PP was a boy). My aunt was horrified, but it all worked out. *g*

What is your most cherished holiday memory?
Probably the same. Ha ha. You know, every Christmas Eve is just so special. It's my favorite day of the year. It's about family and Christmas and singing and being together, not Santa and presents and all that Hallmark jazz. I'll always remember our Christmas Eve traditions.

Best present you've ever given someone:
As far as Christmas presents go, I'm not sure. The one gift I gave that was the most special to both the recipient and myself was not a Christmas gift, but was given as an anniversary present to my grandparents... they went to a beach in Chicago on their first date back in the early 40's, and had taken a picture of their shoes on the beach. I painted it for them. That was definitely my favorite.


I did not want to get out of bed this morning. My bed was so warm and my apartment was so cold. Brrrr. And then I got into the shower, and halfway through the freaking hot water went out. Ahhh!! I just managed to wash the conditioner out of my hair and jump out before it turned icy cold.

And somehow, I managed to lose five pounds. After celebrating three birthdays AND Thanksgiving last week. Maybe it hasn't caught up with me yet? *shrug* Speaking of birthdays, HAPPY one-day-late BIRTHDAY TO MY MOMMY!! Even though she doesn't read this, I feel bad for not posting it yesterday. Too much excitement. To my credit, I DID call to wish her a happy birthday. And we celebrated on Saturday. So. *g*

I talked to Gina last night. I miss that girl so much. I miss ALL my Florida friends like crazy. I do wish there was a way for me to move down there... <.sigh> We'll see.

One thing I am worried about with this job is that I'm going to get comfortable and decide that my dreams weren't really important, afterall. There are some things I really want to do in my life, and I DON'T want to give up on those things. I don't want to regret not doing them just because I got too comfortable and/or lazy with my life. I've wanted to live in Los Angeles since I was nine. I hope to all that is good that I manage to do that, even if only for a year or two. I DO have a "dream job" (or at least a dream CLASS of jobs) in mind, and I hope I have the courage to at least try to do that.

And I really like the video for "Come Close." I think it's by Common and Mary J. Blige? Anyway, it's pretty cool.

December 02, 2002

I got a J-O-B

Wheee!! I'm employed! Well, I have to accept and they have to check my references, but I got a job! I'm extremely surprised they actually offered it to me... I thought my interview last Friday was AWFUL! Ah well. I won't question things. Heehee. I will probably be starting about January 20, so that gives me some TIME between graduation and starting work. WHEW! It is a HUGE relief to actually have a JOB. Wow. Okay, I'm going to stop bouncing around the room now. Heehee!

Oh! I JUST REALIZED. Shelley, your Steady Work candle WORKED! I burned it all evening last night, and then today, less than 24 hours later, I get a job offer! Lol. If anyone would like me to burn the candle for them, I'd be happy to. *giggle*