Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Thoughts for this evening...

1) I forgot my glasses at home. This is upsetting for two reasons

  1. I am squinting at my computer screen and it's difficult to read
  2. I'm squinting at my computer screen!!!
2) I missed class a couple of weeks ago due to jury duty and wasn't there when the professor explained an assignment. I did, however, get a copy of the rubric and we have examples in a class manual. The professor offered to meet with me if I felt I needed further explanation. The assignment was fairly straight forward so I figured, why waist my time and hers? I turned it in last week and she seemed skeptical that I would have been able to do the assignment. She made a comment saying, "well, if you can do it without further explanation, I'll be very surprised." Got back the assignment today...full credit. In your face, snarky mc-snarkison!

3) I'm trying to figure out how I will be able to afford to student teach next semester. I won't be able to all...and due to recent events in my life have very little extra money. I am gladly taking donations...just kidding....sorta.

4) The trip to Paris has been postponed to a yet to be determined date. See previous thought... Sadness.

5) In the past five months I have dated more than ever before. I guess you could say I am making up for lost time. HOWEVER, no one ever told me how much havoc a man/boy/guy/man-child can wreak on one's life. Up, down, sleep deprivation, drama... I'm telling you, it's nuts!

6) I love Downton Abbey. Maggie Smith is amazingly hilarious. If you haven't seen/heard of this fantastic tv show on PBS...go watch it. You'll thank me, I promise.


Friday, September 16, 2011

Holy Hannah!

I've been on the two year plan for my graduate program. I have been working on a dual masters in Secondary Education (Master of Arts in Teaching - MAT) and Special Education (Master of Education - M.Ed.). I started this all last summer (2010) and I planned to student teach and graduate fall 2012 with both degrees. I met with my advisor this morning on something completely unrelated to graduation. The result of that meeting was me turning in my application for graduation in MAT for this upcoming spring (2012)!

Apparently the Utah Department of Ed changed some regulations and it is more beneficial for me, long term, if I don't do concurrent licensing in both Secondary and Special Ed. I finish up my methods placement this semester (Cypress High in Magna...quite the commute, I know) and I'll do my student teaching in the spring. I'm still trying to wrap my brain around the fact that I'll graduate in the spring. It's crazy!

I'm still going to finish up the special education requirements but will be able to do that while I teach. It will take me a little longer but I'll be teaching! In my own classroom! At a real school! I will have an actual profession!

I'm just a little excited, if you didn't notice...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Who knew?

Who knew that actually having a social life and friends would make school so difficult? Well, I'm sure most of you already knew that but this is news to me. Thus far in my graduate career it has not been a problem. In fact, I often used my "studying" and "homework" as a way to get out of spending time with people that I didn't want to see. Granted, I did actually have homework and studying to do. Yet, I probably could have worked something out if I had really wanted to. It also helped that my last bedroom was a deep, dark hole that did not inspire one to get out and spend time with the world.

I need a kick in the pants! I have a group presentation coming up and I have yet to do any real work on my part. Yes...I have become that obnoxious person. I don't like group projects because you have to do things in advance on a time table other than your own. It's annoying.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Civic Duty

A couple of weeks ago I got a jury summons. I dutifully completed the questionnaire and waited for my notice to appear or whatever it's called. It came last weekend and I was told to come to the Matheson Courthouse for jury selection on Tuesday morning. I had no idea if I would be chosen and I wasn't sure if I cared one way or the other. Some are really excited to be called in for jury duty and others absolutely dread it. I thought it could be interesting to see the justice system at work and to participate in a very real way but if I wasn't biggie.

Once called to participate in a specific jury selection you are ushered into a courtroom with the prosecution, defense and the judge. We were told it was a criminal case...the butterflies started going in my stomach. The judge read the laws that the defendant had allegedly broken. My heart sank. Sexual battery and sexual assault of a child. The questions they asked after that narrowed the jury pool down further. With each question the feeling of dread became like a brick in my stomach. My heart dropped into my stomach when they read my name for the final jury.

Numerous people over the past several days have told me how jealous they are that I had been selected. People thought it would "cool" and "fun" and "entertaining". It was undoubtedly interesting to see the justice system at work and to see the process from beginning to end. I am grateful for our system of government.

Yet, I wish with all my heart that I had never had to go. I wish with all my heart that such circumstances never came to be. I sat and listened to two days of child testimonies. I listened to two young teenage girls with autism describe the abuse. I saw a man break down into tears as the jury instructions were read and he realized just what could possibly happen to him.

The verdict was guilty. I am very glad that a threat has been taken off the streets and more children will not be in danger. However, that is not a decision to be taken lightly. It was a huge responsibility. Today I irrevocably changed a man's life. The responsibility of that will never truly leave me. I believe we made the right choice and I don't regret it. I only wish it had never been necessary.

Some of my fellow jurors were almost flippant about the verdict and the accused. The children did not have the best home life and comments were made about people like "them" and "us". Maybe it was a way of dealing with the horror of the situation...a way of separating themselves from the tragedy.

I didn't expect I would react this way. I didn't think I would be so affected. I went to my parents and cried to my dad. It still upsets me to think about it. To know that there is such evil in the world. To know there is such danger and uncertainty in the world. It breaks my heart.

I am grateful we have the opportunity to be tried by a jury of our peers, I truly am. I wish with all my heart and soul that it was never necessary. What I participated in these past several days was nothing short of tragic.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

To blog or not to blog...

...that is the question. I've had some pretty great things happen in the past month or so. I've debated blogging about it but I'm just not sure I want to send it out into the interwebs just yet.

I will say this, my new ward is pretty fun. I've met some really fun and exciting new people and made some great friends. I've been to Bear Lake, attending movies in the park, had BBQs and pool dates with the girls.

As far as what else is going on...I guess time will tell if I share it with you all. But I do want to just say - I am happy. I am far happier than I have been in a very long time.