Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Grad school

It's time to start getting serious about grad school, I think! I'm not getting any younger, and would love to graduate in time for the degree to help my professional future!

I'm thinking about a masters in library science from either North Carolina Central or the University of North Carolina. UNC has the better reputation, but NC Central's program caters more to working folks, offering many classes at night or on the weekend. Both programs are accredited, and that's really important!

I need to get back to studying for the GRE, and quick like! I have a study guide at home, perhaps a project to begin this weekend.

House cleaning

It's amazing what getting ready for a trip reveals to me about my apartment! George and I are heading to Atlanta this weekend for the Bar Mitzvah of one of his cousins. Last night I got my suitcase out and started going through my closets and drawers, planning what to wear and seeing what I need to take to the cleaners or wash myself, that sort of thing. I really need to clean out my closets! And my drawers! Wow! There's so much I can give or throw away now! I hope my place will be transformed in the next couple of weeks.

I'm getting myself psyched up for the trip, food-wise. I'll be taking my Rice Diet food with me. And I need to remember that at all the social functions, food does not equal fun!

Monday, February 26, 2007

Weekend update

Saturday afternoon, George and I went on a walk around the cross country trail, led by a lady at our church. It was part of a fundraising auction at our church, and this was something George bid on for the both of us. It was a beautiful afternoon for the three-mile walk, and it was a treat to get outside and meet some fellow church members.

Saturday night we went to the Starlite Drive-in to see "Ghost Rider." The movie was okay, normally not my kind of movie, but kinda fun to see at the drive-in!

Yesterday I took it easy, and watched a portion of two Duke basketball games on TV, which was relaxing and fun (especially since Duke won both of them!). The women's team is undefeated, which is quite an accomplishment.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Sense of Community

I've been thinking a lot lately about community, and how I fit into different communities. It's more about just fitting in here in Durham, but in different areas of my life as well.

Some things, like my church, Eno River Unitarian-Universalist Fellowship, have been pretty easy to become a part of. There are many opportunities to get involved, and the people there are open and friendly. Other things, like my Junior League group, have been a little harder for me to break into. I have some acquaintances, but no one I talk to outside of meetings. Every meeting or event I go to, I try to meet someone new, or talk with someone I've met a little more.

I'm still a Mary Kay consultant, though I haven't done much with it lately. I love the makeup and skin care, so I plan to keep up with it so when I'm ready to become more involved with it, it will be there. I do miss going to the weekly meetings, but the adopted director's meeting I attend is a good 20 minute drive each way, in addition to the two-hour meeting on a weeknight, so that's something to consider.

I'm also the moderator for a Yahoo Group called Triangle Friends, which is a "job" I inherited about 4.5 years ago, when the previous moderator bowed out and appointed me. It become a group of one (me!) and is now 600+ members strong. The activity on the group board has dwindled, and it's been close to a year since I've had time to organize any events. Attendance had been a little spotty, but I have met some interesting people along the way through this group. I've been trying to decide how much time and energy I want to spend on it. It would be nice to get it going again, I think.

Of course, there's my work at Duke, which I enjoy, and I'm feeling more and more a part of the community there. Our department will be moving next year, and I was glad to be put on the worklife committee for that move, since I am concerned about things like community.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

What's newsworthy?

It dawned on me this morning, as I listened to the morning news on the TV while walking around the apartment getting ready for work, that I'm kinda sucked into the whole Anna Nicole Smith story, sensational as it is. Oddly enough, I didn't follow her in life, and would often roll my eyes when her name came up in conversation around me. Now I find her life and death both sad and intriguing.

I think that part of my fascination with this story as it's played out on the news lately is that it's a change of pace from the war in Iraq.

Not the only news story to pique my interest, though, I've also been following the Presidential race as it's playing out early on. The fact that a woman (Hillary Clinton) and an African-American (Barack Obama) are in the running for the Democratic ticket fascinates me, and I'm looking forward to seeing how it plays out!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Weekend update

George and I had a busy weekend at church, going to the annual fundraiser auction on Saturday night (which was a lot of fun!), then going to the Sunday morning service followed by a congregational meeting. I got my lunch to go from the Rice House, and George and I ate together in between the service and the meeting. I chose puffed wheat instead of my usual rice concoction, and found it to be pretty tasty, especially mixed with the fruit. (I had manadarin orange slices and tropical fruit salad, also from the Rice House.)

Afterward, we went to check out another apartment complex. We were a little worn out from the previous week and weekend activities, so we weren't particularly impressed with this particular apartment. Part of it for me was that it hadn't been cleaned, so there was still mildew in the bathroom, stuff on the carpet, and a general dinginess in the kitchen. Perhaps we'll give it another try later on.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Preparing for another 5K

I signed up for another 5K road race yesterday, the Run for the Oaks, on March 17 in Raleigh. I'm excited about having this (running a 5K) as a goal again. I hope to improve my own time over the last 5K in December. Maybe I'll break 50 minutes this time!

Valentine's Day

George and I had a nice Valentine's Day last night. He took me out to eat at Rockfish Seafood Grill. I had salmon, veggies, and rice, and it was yummy. :-) Although I'm still on the Rice Diet, it was nice to have a change of scenery and pace, to get away from the Rice House for a night. George and I rarely get to eat together these days, with my eating at the Rice House, so it was a treat to get to sit and talk over dinner.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Books Beside My Bed at the Moment

I've recently started reading two new (for me) books, The New Psycho-Cybernetics, by Maxwell Maltz & Dan Kennedy (editor), and Lost in a Good Book, by Jasper Fford.

The first, The New Psycho-Cybernetics, is a self-help book that I first heard about over 20 years ago, before it was newly revised. The tennis coach at my high school had her team read it, and they were quite good. I looked up to her, to boot. Since I'm on this not-so-new-anymore diet and exercise program, I thought this would be a great time to finally read it, so I had it on my Amazon Wishlist and received it for Christmas. I've just read what Wikipedia has to say about Psycho-Cybernetics. Here's the website for Psycho-Cybernetics, too.

The fiction book, Lost in a Good Book, is a mystery/fantasy type book that's the second in the series. I finished the first book of the series, The Eyre Affair, last week, and enjoyed it alot, so I decided I wanted to read more by Jasper Fforde.

Successful diet weekend

George and I had fun at our social engagements over the weekend, and I survived the munchie temptations with a weight loss for the weekend! For a further reward, Dr. Neelon stopped by my breakfast table yesterday and told me to stop taking the metformin and see how my numbers are. They've been really good lately, so the hope is that they'll continue to stay stable. Need to stick with the diet and exercise routine.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Party Weekend (while dieting)

George and I have been invited to 3 parties this weekend, one on each of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. This is a little unusual for us, but it makes for a fun and interesting weekend. Last night we went to a gathering of ERUUF folks. Tonight a friend of ours is hosting a games party, and tomorrow she's invited a group over to watch the Super Bowl.

It's fun to visit with old friends and acquaintances and meet new people, but partying has taken a new turn for me since I started the Rice Diet. It gotten me to try to think less about the food and more about the people. Last night was the first party I can think of where I didn't have a thing to eat! Everything looked and smelled wonderful, but when George and I left the party, I was glad I didn't have anything. I would've regretted eating afterward, though I would've have enjoyed it at the moment. I think I did more talking than I would have otherwise, though it was interesting not being able to talk about the food last night. One guest did ask if I was going to eat anything, and I just said, "No, I'm fine!" She shrugged and left it at that.

I feel a stronger resolve for tonight and tomorrow, after surviving last night's party. Plus, I'm sooo close to my next big weight loss goal!