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Graduation – to celebrate or not?

May 2nd, 2012

I just finished taking my last final.

I’m still digesting this sentence.

No more night classes. No more Salt Lake Community College. No more staying home to do homework while all of my friends are at the pool, or skiing, or doing absolutely nothing. No more eating dinner out of a vending machine. No more sleepless nights worrying about how I am going to juggle work and school. No more tuition. No more expensive college books.

I’m done.

But, for some reason I am reluctant to celebrate. It’s strange, but now that I’m done, having an associates degree just seems like not that big of a deal. Or at least I’m worried that is what other people will think.

Woo. Hoo. You now have the same degree that every other 21 year old has, only ten years later than them. Congratu-friggin-lation.

But, on the other hand, I do feel proud. It has been a long, long process and I have stayed diligent through it all. In fact, I have been writing about my college journey for almost FOUR YEARS!

Yes, taking night classes part-time results in four years to get an associates degree. It’s embarrassing. Do I really have the right to gloat about my silly little degree that took me so long?

Yes. I think I do.

Blogfully yours,

Summer

PS – continuing education? Yes, I intend to get a BA degree. I’ve come this far after all. However, I’m taking the next seven months off to focus on my career. If everything goes well, in 2013 I’ll start another four year process to get an undergraduate degree.

Back to School

I’ve been a busy little mouse

February 22nd, 2012

Things have been quite here on Blogfully Yours.

I mean, it’s like a ghost town up in here.

It’s not that my life has suddenly become so stale and borring that I can’t find anything to write about, quite the opposite actually. I have SO much going on that I can’t even wrap my head around it all, yet alone share it in a way that is anything less than word vomit all over my pretty little pink blog.

But, here I go anyway.

(You may want to keep a rag handy to wipe off any macaroni chunks I leave on your face.)

Life ~ Love ~ And the Pursuit of Higher Education, right?

Let’s start with the last one, m’kay?

In May I will graduate with my associates degree (AS) in communications. I have three classes left this semester and then I am DONE!

Of course by done I mean with community college education. Then I will have to go to the big scary university, which, let’s be honest, intimidates the hell out of me. But I’ve come this far, why stop with just an associates?

College is not the only pursuit of higher education I’ve been after lately. Not by a long shot!

(Insert semi-forced segue into LIFE.)

After getting laid-off from what I originally thought was my dream job last October, I found myself NOT wanting to go back to another advertising position. I started questioning everything, including my worth. I hated the feeling of being let go and I decided to never, ever, let a company make me feel worthless again.

But how do you guarantee to never be let go?

You become your own boss.

As chance would have it, a Farmer’s Insurance Group district manager came across my resume and called me in for an interview. I went, I listened, I researched, I interviewed other agents, and eventually I decided this was the opportunity I had been waiting for.

This was obviously a HUGE decision to make! There is not a whole lot that advertising and insurance have in common if you know what I mean.

There were three things that stood out to me and helped seal the deal:

1. I have had Farmer’s Insurance for years and have had nothing but positive experiences. They have a great reputation that I am proud to have my name associated with.

2. They are the leaders in industry training. If I am to make a career move, I needed to know that the training and support would be in place to back me up. You know the commercials with the University of Farmers? Yeah, that’s a real place and I get to go there!

3. You get to be your own boss. It’s like buying a franchise without the out of pocket expense. Eventually, after I’ve built up my client base, I will have my own storefront location and employees.

But just like any worthwhile profession, there is a learning curve. In order to become an insurance agent you need to get licensed.

Ugh!

I passed my first exam (with flying colors, I might add) and have one more to go (this Friday!). After that I will officially be able to sell the full range of insurance products offered by Farmer’s to the fine citizens of Utah.

For the past month my days have been spent doing nothing but studying: Homework. Utah State license work. Farmer’s agent training. Rinse and repeat.

Busy, busy, busy!

If everything goes as planned, which by damn it will, I’ll be up and running by the first week of March! Words cannot explain just how excited I am!

So, yeah.

Life is good.

I guess that just leaves LOVE to talk about.

Cute is about the most supportive and wonderful boyfriend I could ever ask for. He has been patient and encouraging through all of this. Taking a life-changing leap like I am doing would be so much harder without him by my side.

We have now been living together for four months and have settled into a happy routine. Some times it’s hard to believe we have only been dating for 10 months — things just feel so comfortable. Other times it feels like our relationship is brand new and we are still figuring each other out. I can’t say for certain, but I like to believe that’s a really good thing.

Since this post is getting to be ridiculously long, I will sign off with a picture of Cute and I on New Years Eve in San Diego.

Isn’t he just about as handsome as they come?

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Agent SummerFred, Back to School, Cute

And just like that, it was all totally worth it

May 10th, 2010

The past five months have accumulated to what will forever be known as the hardest semester EVER.

Last December, because business was a little slow, I approached my then boss with a proposition to cut my hours back so I could invest them in furthering my education. He agreed, and I enrolled in 13 credit hours (four classes).

I still worked 32 hours per week so not only was I eligible for  benefits, I was finally able to take some classes that were not offered at night.

Everything went smooth in the beginning. That is, until I got offered and accepted a position at a company I have wanted to work for for years. I explained to my new employer my situation with school. Even though the position was not a 32 hrs per week position, they agreed to work with me.

I don’t think I left the office before 7 p.m. for the first two months I was there.

I put my social life on hold, stopped blogging as regularly as I like to and committed myself to not dropping any of my classes and not losing my new job. Every day I would tell myself, “It’s only until May. I can do anything for that long. It’s only until May.”

I gave up the expectation of keeping my straight A average two weeks into my balancing act – survival was the new standard.

I also gave up rights to a full nights sleep – five hours became the new eight.

It was hell.

But guess what?

I’m so happy I could cry because IT’S MAY! Halle-freakin-lujah! The semester is over and I survived!

Technically the semester ended last week but I haven’t let myself get overly excited because most of my grades have not been posted. I’ve been stressed as to what the final outcome of all my sleepless nights would amount to be.

Then I got an email from my journalism and reporting class professor:

Your blog reads well — keep w/it –
Course GRADE: A

As part of the final for this class, I had to turn in a portfolio of published works. Since I only had a few of my articles published by the student paper, I included a post from Blogfully Yours that I was particularly fond of. I even went so far as to chose Blogfully Yours as my signature work in an analysis of my portfolio. I honestly wasn’t sure how well that would go over. But, now I know. My professor thinks my blog “reads well” and because of my cumulative writing over the semester I got an A!

Do you have any idea how cool that is?

His simple words let me know that I am not a hack and that I should continue to write. This comes at a time where I teeter on the edge of giving up and often wonder if it’s all worth it. And THANK GOD he did, because I’m not ready to quit yet. I enjoy writing, so as long as the Internet remains a place where I can put my random thoughts, stories, fears and heart ache completely out there to be read, judged and often shit upon – I’m going to do so!

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School, Circus life

The Balancing Act

March 3rd, 2010

Now that I have landed my dream job and have been working there for just over a week, I’ve gotta tell you, being a circus performer is hard effing work!

Not that I can’t handle it, because I totally can.

It’s just that I am also in college full time too. I know, what was I thinking, right? But the good news, which I keep reminding myself of, is that it’s only until May. After May (this semester), I am dropping the number of credit hours I take. This will likely mean that I’ll finish my degree about the same time as my six year old niece will, but hey,  the price of sanity is filled with four year degrees that take twenty to complete.

Now if you’ll excuse me, the clown car just rolled up and it’s my turn to drive.

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School

My Best

February 17th, 2010

I believe you should always try to do your best. However, what that best is changes from time to time.

Right now I have so many pots in the fire that my best is to juggle work, school, homework and eating twice a day, sometimes more. My best has not included finding time to blog, yet alone finding time to see my boyfriend.

Be patient with me.

Right now, I’m doing my best.

Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz

Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School, blogging

I Need to Learn to Read More Gooder

January 19th, 2010

You know those products where you do some sort of “eye exercises” or Voo Doo trances everyday and you end up being able to read faster or control peoples minds?

Do you think they work?

This semester I am taking pretty much all communication classes and surprise, surprise, they all come with giant text books. Well, not giant as in ED’s Organic Chemistry book, but still 400-500 pages each.

And of course, each teacher wants you to read one or two chapters per week. Each chapter is roughly 30 pages long, which equates to exactly way to much freaking reading.

Don’t get me wrong, I find a lot of the content interesting (Yay! I’m actually on the right education path!), it’s just that it takes so GD long to get through it all.

Lord help me. I’m only one week into this semester…

I’ve gotta figure out a way to be more efficient. Your ideas may be are welcome. My sleep depends on it.  And frankly, that’s just not something I want to part with.

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School, Bag full of complaints

A (scary) Step Forward

January 12th, 2010

Spring Semester 2010 starts today for me. This semester I am trying something a little bit on the scary side for me. My work has graciously agreed to let me cut my hours back and I will now be taking classes back to back on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.

Cutting my hours obviously means taking a cut in my pay. This is incredibly scary because I am also upping my credit hours and therefore my tuition.

Yikes!

But you know what? I’m not stressing about it. Well, a little. But I am applying for scholarships and I’m in the system to get financial aide (although it looks like I won’t qualify). Things are definitely going to be tight, but I will find a way to make it work!

To be honest I am really excited about this semester. It is all classes that go towards my communications degree and will also carry over into my daily life.  So while additional hours and less income is scary, I am more excited than anything.

I feel like I have momentum.

I feel like there could actually be an end in sight.

The end being years away, but still, I see it and that’s the point.

Right?

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School

I’d say I’m almost done, but that would be a dirty, dirty, dirty lie

December 9th, 2009

school nerd The last two essays for my writing class are finally complete.

I gave my last speech for a grade. From now on any nervous mutterings I give in front of a group will only be silently judged, but no letter will be attached.

My backpack is packed with my final portfolio assignment for the semester. Once I turn that in tomorrow, I am FREE!

That is, until January 12th, when spring semester starts up again.

Remind me again why I didn’t go to college right out of high school?

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School

I Think I’m Forgetting How to Use My Big Girl Words

October 20th, 2009

My days are spent not talking.

Let’s examine this a little bit, shall we? I work full time. At work I sit alone in my office and write things for clients like news letters, press releases and marketing plans, I research the latest marketing trends, responding to emails and attend meetings. I then go to school where I listen to teachers lecture and take notes. In the evenings I am reading my text books, studying and doing homework.

Oh the exciting life I lead. It’s an rare night in deed if I can find the time to work out or watch TV.

I spend so much time reading and listening that when I finally do get placed in a situation where I have to use my audible communication skills my words fail me. They just flat out disappear. I have no backspace, cut and paste or delete keys to rely on and I can’t just “Google” what I am looking for. I find myself simply listening to whatever conversation I am in and not really speaking up too much because when I try to contribute or tell a story I simply can not get through it without help. “You know that one thing with the four wheels and you drive it? Yeah, a car! So I was in the car and I was listening to, oh crap, what’s the name of that one band that sings that one song? Remember? We saw them in concert that one time?”

You get the picture. And heaven forbid you ask me my opinion! Because that answer will leave you so lost you will think you have just been talking to mentally challenged person. I swear, it’s still me! I am just out of practice at… talking?

Maybe I just need to get more sleep or take some ginkgo biloba or whatever vitamin makes your brain work more better. I’ve seriously  got to do something though because all this learnin’  and edumacation is making me unsmart.

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School, Bag full of complaints, Random

My Online (Fantasy) Teacher

September 11th, 2009

If you have ever taken an online class you know there is a lot of reading and writing involved. The class instructor writes out mini lectures for you to read, he/she responds to your papers as well as the rest of the classes papers and so on.

For those of you who haven’t ever taken an online class, stay with me because you know how when you read a book and in your head each character has a voice that you hear when you read them?

Still with me?

Okay.

So my online teacher writes exactly like Doug Fabrizio talks! And let me tell you, I think Doug Fabrizio has a super sexy, take me to bed with your intellectual commentary bad-ass voice!

For those of you who do not know who I am talking about, Mr. Fabrizio is a local (award-winning) radio host on Utah’s NPR station, KUER 90.1.

In other words, I am being taught by someone who not only talks like McDreamy from Greys Anatomy – he looks like him too.

doug-fabrizio

McFabrizio

Pretty close to every college girls fantasy teacher… at least mine anyway.

Blogfully yours,

Summer

Back to School