What happened to the fall?

Well, it’s been far too long since I’ve posted. If there’s anyone out there still following me, I salute you, dear friend. I simply don’t have the time to update regularly, and while I’m in school, my life doesn’t seem interesting enough to post about.

What have I been up to for the past two months? I’ll make this as brief as I can.

I’ve fallen out of love. And into love again. I’m in a new relationship, and I’m happier than I could have imagined. My boyfriend’s name is Brandon, and we are very compatible together in terms of interests, personality, humor, etc. We were coworkers this past spring/summer, which is how we met.

12105926_10201084642355002_5866372919649966916_n

Brandon and I, October 2015

I am halfway through my last semester of college. My grades have been excellent thus far, so I am rather pleased. Classes consume much of my time, but they’re fairly enjoyable overall. Shakespeare online is my least favorite class, simply because I find old English to be a bit dull and difficult to understand. I’m also Vice-President of the World Student Association, and we’re in the process of planning Cultural Night, the largest event on campus, which is coming up in two weeks time.

I am having some car troubles. I have to replace my front brake pads very soon. The oxygen sensor is also not working, but I will wait on repairing that for a while yet (it’s not a dire fix, while brakes on the other hand are very important).

I am beginning to think about life after graduation now. To be quite honest, I’m a bit afraid for life after graduation. Student loans will be looming over my head in the near future; I have mountains of debt to pay. I will likely be living with my parents as free room and board can’t be beat. However, job prospects in my hometown are slim as I am from a town of 2000 people. I will likely move back to the Twin Ports area after a few months, or perhaps head somewhere like Minneapolis for a job, next summer or fall at the soonest I’d imagine.

I want to teach abroad next fall, but the deadlines for applications are coming up too quickly, and focusing on school now takes up too much of my time. I wanted to apply for the JET program for 2016, but the deadline is so soon, and I didn’t have the time to collect all the needed forms and to complete the paperwork. Perhaps next time. I’m still thinking South Korea could be a viable option for next fall.

To be continued, friends.

Let’s try and finish out the semester strong.

The semester is finished! Let summer begin!

I completed my second to last semester today. It was a tough one I will admit; there was one class in particular that was very stressful. I am happy to be done for the semester and to have the summer ahead of me. Question is, when will we have summer weather? Wisconsin has been rainy/cloudy and 40-45 degrees for the past few weeks.

While it would be easy enough to waste summer away being lazy, I do have a number of tasks I would like to accomplish this summer. Here are two lists- a “fun list” and a “practical list.”

Fun list:

1. Read any fiction novel by Haruki Murakami that I can get my hands on

2. Create a summer reading list and follow through with it

3. Learn how to use some kind of music mixer program to seamlessly blend one song into the next for a dance playlist

4. Go salsa dancing in the Twin Cities this summer

5. Celebrate Homecoming and spend time with my brother, who is visiting at the end of July

Practical list:

1. Work as much as I possibly can (at Barnes & Noble, and doing online writing consultations for my on-campus job)

a. Squirrel away money to pay my student debt

b. Start setting up a budget and figuring out how much to pay towards loans each month after graduation

2. Apply for the Peace Corps and similar programs

3. Put serious research and thought into what I will do after graduating this December

4. Find a month-to-month rental for the fall – this will need to be done ASAP

5. If my boyfriend goes to grad school right away: learn how to make a long-distance relationship work

What are your plans for the summer?

Senior capstone presentation

Today has been a good day.

To start off with, I was awarded two English scholarships for the fall semester, which is my last semester here. Despite only being here for one more semester, I will still receive the full amount that would ordinarily be given for the full school year!

Then this evening, the English majors who are graduating this year (either this semester or next) gave a brief presentation on our senior capstone posters, which is the product of several papers we have written to create this final project. I analyzed Haruki Murakami’s novel After Dark from a gender studies perspective. The English faculty, along with a few writing and language professors, were in attendance. I am very glad that my parents made the hour and a half drive to watch the presentation, and I introduced them to my English professors and Spanish teacher. My parents also met a few of my classmates. Also, my mother, outgoing as she is, enjoyed meeting with everyone.

Four years of hard work has boiled down to this moment. I’m glad the presentation went well.

I should also mention– I started working as a barista at Barnes & Noble. I will be working weekends, so come visit me in Duluth at the mall!

11133795_10152824067567727_162084257518570671_n11204873_10152824069022727_5279908917569878477_n

February updates

Well, hello there. It’s been awhile, hasn’t it?

The semester is picking up. I’m working steadily on research for two papers that will be compiled into one final paper for my English class at the end of the semester. It’s a literary criticism class, and it’s not easy material to slog through. To be honest, some days I only understand about half of what people like Althusser or Lacan are trying to express. However, I’m slowly getting the hang of it. Other presentations are coming up soon as well.

The most exciting event of the past few weeks was buying my first car, an 03′ Subaru Forester. It only has about 33,000 miles on it, and it runs really well for the most part. I’m taking it in to a Subaru dealership this weekend to get the oil changed and to have someone inspect my vehicle to make sure it doesn’t have any issues.

When I get the chance, I hope to share some of writing from a creative non-fiction class I am taking this semester here. It’s one of my favorite classes this semester, and I often don’t find the opportunity to write, so this class is a great excuse to do so. With my major, I’m usually nose-in-a-book-studying-the-classics 24/7. Being able to create my own works is always a nice switch up from the daily quotidian of typical English classes.

Art exhibit

Tomorrow at my university, I will be discussing my trip to Oaxaca. Our travel group set up an art exhibit of the works we created while abroad. There is a mix of 2-D and 3-D works, along with clay sculptures and a collaborative looming piece made by us in Oaxaca. We all took classes while abroad, technically, so we are getting credit for the classes we signed up for. I’m getting 6 art credits just by having spent two weeks living and breathing art in Oaxaca. Pretty neat!

10957345_10152631158677727_8104077427613980329_n

Our trip leader, Kathy, is currently sick, so I will be the one speaking in her place, welcoming everyone to the show,  leading the Q&A, and so forth. I think this will be a nice opportunity to let people here in Wisconsin know about our trip to Mexico. I invited a few of my professors to attend as well.

For my friends: the exhibit is taking place in the 3rd floor gallery of Holden at UWS from noon-1pm.

Until next time,

Sarah