Friday, December 28, 2012

What Chapter is this?

I am not any more weak than any of you for expressing my FEELINGS. I don't claim to understand myself, nor my peers, or anyone else on this planet but I try pretty hard.

I'm stressed in the weirdest way I have ever been. I think I'm having reactions of post-school disorder (totally made up by me by the way). I have always ALWAYS ALWAYS thrived on relationships, connections, interactions, and FRIENDS. My social life is very important to me and I think the end of continual school has put a huge wrench in my relationships. I'm not seeing people my age every day.

I get very high anxiety when I'm alone. Therefore I mostly cope by sleeping. My productivity outside of work has tanked.

My social life mostly involved going out and spending money. Well, now that I have a professional career I have a different schedule than many of my friends still in school and my friends with jobs like me are equally as busy and matching schedules is harder than pulling teeth. Going out during the week would be pretty stupid seeing as I get up before 6am every day. So what am I supposed to do after work? Cook dinner, watch TV, blog? I spend 9 hours a day on a computer, so when I get home I really don't want to keep looking at one.

I wish I had a hobby that I was already invested in. Painting is a hobby but getting everything ready to paint for MAYBE an hour seems like such a waste. I need to get healthy and work out but once again I can make every excuse in the book for that not to work. Starting new things is hard and I'm afraid the longer I wait, the harder it will be. We shall see.

Pray I get out of this funk soon!

Thanks!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

December 2012

I always do this to you. I always apologize. I still haven't changed. I'm sure every time I go on streaks of not blogging I lose followers.

It's not that I don't have time. I lack motivation most of the time.

I just passed the one month mark of being out of school. It flew by. I have THOROUGHLY enjoyed having NO commitments past 4pm and sleeping by 9pm. I've enjoyed being lazy and catching up on TV shows. I've enjoyed throwing my PJs on by 5pm and cooking dinner. I've enjoyed watching Packers' games on Sunday with no worries of finishing homework or studying. No worries of homework or studying ANY day of the week for that matter. I've been learning skills of human interaction and responses. I have more time to think about my actions.

I continue to car shop with the threat of my car dying any day it seems.

My job is great. As I said in my family's' Christmas letter, the sky is the limit for me. You better believe it!

Got 99% of my Christmas shopping done in Chicago last weekend. Can't wait to be with my family. It's the best time of the year. <3 p="p">
I'm taking a pre-Christmas vacation with my brother this weekend. I wouldn't be surprised if we end up in Africa or something (jk). ;)

Lastly, I'm waiting for this big "snow storm" we're supposed to get. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Gracias!

Thanksgiving. I could write a long note of cliche memories and expectations of this day, but I'm not going to this year. I'm thankful every day.

This year, this time, I was planning on being on the east coast. Today in fact. I spent countless hours researching relief groups, talking to contacts, and ready to lay down money for a flight. I asked two things in return; a ride to/from the airport and a 2' x 6' area to sleep for 4 days. I like helping. I helped after Katrina and it was life changing. It was such an eye opener and it felt reallly good. So in wake of hurricane Sandy I was ready to go help. With the horror stories still circulating about the event and the work that needs to be done, I wanted my help to count.

I'm sitting in Sheboygan Falls with my family today. I couldn't be more thankful to what I have come home to, but I still wish I could have had the opportunity to help out East. I talked to about 6 different people/organizations personally about me coming to help and I got 6 answers. We can't help you or you can't help us, we don't need you, or we already have enough help. After 6 tries I gave up.

I continued to watch the news and segments about the disaster relief. I laughed at the TV when they asked for help. No one wanted my help. A mid-westerner willing to give up my Thanksgiving celebrations and money to help those in need was denied on every attempt. My pity is gone. It is sad that I now think of all of New York as selfish, stubborn people. I can only help to think if I was in need, they'd book the next trip to Europe.

I have mixed feelings today. I have the best family a girl could ask for and I'm going to indulge in more food today than I should consume all week, yet my help was denied. It hurts.

Sometimes, you should accept help.

My professor told me on the day of my graduation; "Promise me one thing Berea. You won't be afraid to ask for help. Promise?"

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:11-13

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

When God Closes One Door, He Opens Another

In four short days my life changes. I'm not turning a year older or leaving the country for good, I'm growing up, I'm graduating college. It won't be an instant change, but it will be a mark of adulthood. I apologize now if my attitude comes off as bragging, it is still sinking in for me. Only 30% of Americans have a bachelors degree. That's a minority! Anyways, I've worked hard to get where I am whether my personality shows it or not. I had plenty of sleepless nights, tears after tests, and doubts of finishing school altogether. I am proud of myself.

I have met many people that have influenced my life and the decisions I will choose to make in the coming years. I dove head first off the high dive and I'm just coming up for air now. My professional life has grown like a wildflower and I've learned SO MANY THINGS. Not only have I learned textbook material but real life lessons I will take with me forever. Probably more personal lessons than course material!

I was fortunate to be blessed with jobs throughout college that gave me more than a paycheck. They were all continual learning experiences I will likely never forget. 

The biggest blessing is that I'm walking off that stage Saturday with more than just a piece of paper. My coworkers asked me today what I want for graduation and I said I already have what I want, my job. It's surreal. It embarrasses me to no end talking about my job to those affected by the situation of our economy (jobless). I'm saying that here, hoping this is a safe environment that even if you hate me, you can yell at your computer screen and call me bad names but hopefully find a piece of happiness in your heart for me. 

I want to be a role model for those like me. I was an average student in high school raised in a lower-middle class family. Not to mention I am a female engineer. This is what I wanted and I was not going to let anyone tell me no, including myself. If you want something, go get it!

On that note, I have lots of thanks to give this Thanksgiving. I thank the US government for making it possible for me to take out loans to go to college. I thank my parents for everything really, but mostly for raising me to believe college was the only option. I thank them for keeping their doubts mostly hidden and supporting my adolescent decisions. I thank my dad x 10^100 for helping me find my career path and figuring out what I truly love. I thank my friends who supported me and tell me all too often how proud of their little nerd they are. I thank my classmates who pushed me to do better. I thank my adviser and role model who counseled me and watched me choke down tears in her office year after year, talk about an influential person. I thank my work study bosses who put a smile on my face every day, gave me confidence, treated me like their daughter, brought me good food, and listened to me complain about stress. I thank the people who doubted me, because you made me one of the most determined young woman at MSOE. Last, certainly not forgotten, I thank God. I thank him for keeping me company until those 2 and 3am mornings studying. I thank him for giving me perseverance to do what I want and the knowledge to somehow make it through.  

xoxo

Trust in the Lord with all your hearts, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6

Saturday, November 10, 2012

My Company


In the recent years, innovation and “green” practices have become two of the key phrases for companies wanting to capture the attention of consumers and imply their products and services are helping to improve the world we live in. A key factor in determining the future of our environment is analyzing the companies that use resources to provide power and automation. One of the world leaders in production and services of power and automation is ABB (Asea Brown Boveri) Incorporated. Not only do ABB’s marketing strategies illustrate success, but their financial statements, industry comparisons, and market growth.
About ABB
For a company that has been around for over 100 years, ABB has many accomplishments that set them apart from competitors. They have made it to the global list of Fortune 500 companies, operate in over 100 countries, and employ over 145,000 people. ABB was the first company to transmit high-voltage power, build the first three-phase transmission system, the first steam turbine, the world’s largest self-cooling transformer, combustion gas turbine, high-speed circuit breaker, and the list goes on. In other words, ABB has provided many of the technologies and core concepts that are underlying factors of society as we know it. 
Since ABB is such a large and encompassing company, their products and services are divided into five divisions; power products, power systems, discrete automation and motion, low voltage products, and process automation. Each division seeks to entice different markets and consumers with the most cost effective, innovative, and reliable products. A main reason of ABB’s success is the interaction between divisions that support their entity as a whole.
Industry
Power and automation is a broad term that although describes ABB well, does not provide a clear understanding of what ABB has to offer. In very basic terms, the power aspect of ABB includes using resources to generate electricity for residential to commercial consumers. After harnessing resources such as fossil fuels, natural gas, and energy, products are needed to convert these raw resources into usable energy, which ABB also provides. The automation side of the industry deals more with motors and generators and equipment that needs these things. An example of a product from the automation industry is the charging stations for electric vehicles which have made an increasing presence in today’s economy.
ABB makes the robots that paint luxury cars (such as Aston Martins), the transformers that supplied the 2012 Olympics with power, the generators that supply residential neighborhoods across the world, and much more. Since the headquarters are in Zurich, Switzerland, they are not as well-known across America yet pose large competition to companies more known in the states such as General Electric (GE) and provide many Americans jobs.
Measuring Success
For the purposes of investors and customers, companies usually do not publicize their failure to success or poor financial situation unless the media exploits it first. Therefore, most businesses like to convey the image of growth and financial well-being whether it is completely true or not. A good way to analyze a company is to do a financial analysis and look at their annual report history and compare data against competitors.
Competition
Innovation means creating products newer, better, and faster than competitors, but to do this, each company must know and understand who they are up against. Compared to industries such as retail or car manufacturing, power and automation is relatively new and consequently does not have as many businesses competing. In America, two of ABB’s biggest competitors are Siemens and General Electric. All three companies have overlapping products in power and automation.
Current Environment
A comparison of the net incomes of ABB, Siemens, and General Electric over the past 5 years can be seen in Figure 1. To understand why net income is used as a comparison, see equation (1).
Figure 1-Net Income Comparison
According to the 2009 annual report published by General Electric, 2008 was a horrendous year for the company. The rebound they experienced in 2009 was remarkable considering their prior year losses, but still shows extreme volatility. ABB showed little effect from the economic crisis in 2008-2009 maintaining a very firm net income position. Lastly, Siemens showed a slight offset in 2009 but was able to recover and continue increasing profits.
Another indicator of how a company is doing is to look at the finances from an investing point of view and the stock prices. Figure 2 shows the comparative stock prices of ABB (blue), Siemens (yellow), and GE (red) since 2008. Through research of news articles and company history, it can be inferred that the American companies are largely affected by economic activity and government involvement whereas for ABB, stock prices are largely influenced by product introductions, current events, and market share.
Figure 2- Comparative Stock Prices
The competition that Siemens imposes on ABB creates the perfect environment for innovation subjecting both sides to continuous improvement.
 Conclusion
Success in an industry is determined by many factors that come together to produce the overall best outcome for suppliers, consumers, investors, and employees. The continuous improvement and innovation occurring in the power and automation industry make competition fierce. ABB’s ability to keep steady financial numbers prove that key players are not willing to take risk that would cause decreased profits. As much as this can be a good thing in economic downturn, it also shows the lack of risk invested in increasing income as well. The financial future of ABB looks to be positive in the short term. Long term, financial hedging or complex options should be introduced with a larger presence to gain even better monetary outcomes.

Sources
"Financial Reporting : Investor Relations : GE." GE Annual Reports. N.p., 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

"Google Finance: Stock Market Quotes, News, Currency Conversions & More." Google Finance: Stock Market Quotes, News, Currency Conversions & More. Google, 05 Nov. 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

"Siemens - Annual Report 2009." Siemens - Annual Report 2009. Siemens, 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

"The ABB Group - Automation and Power Technologies." The ABB Group - Automation and Power Technologies. Asea Brown Boveri, 2012. Web. 05 Nov. 2012. .

Monday, November 5, 2012

In the Moment

I am tired of figuring out who I am. I'm defined for being undefined. I can't tell you I'm a certain way when I most often fall in the middle. I started thinking about this because of my impatience. I seem to always have a countdown until the next big event in my life to motivate me. Does that mean I wouldn't be happy if I had nothing to look forward to? Does that mean I just get done with my daily activities to pass time? What happens when I'm not counting down to the next major event? If I knew myself so well, all my actions would be predictable and quite frankly, that would be boring.

I was startled awake this morning at 4:30 am by the most horrendous beeping, buzzing, screaming alarm ever. The fire alarm. I was confused, I thought I was dreaming. My roommate and I looked like zombies frantically roaming the house in chaos. You have a choice to make; hope it's a false alarm and wait it out, or evacuate. My instinct was to evacuate. I've heard one to many people say "it would never happen to me". I pulled my cat out from under my bed, shoved her in her kennel, and screamed at my roommate to leave with me. Clearly all these actions were over-dramatic in hindsight. I also grabbed my coat and purse. Looking back, I had all that I needed. After getting laughed at by my fellow neighbors for bringing my cat, sitting 1 step above sleeping, and about 20 minutes, we were given the okay to return to our apartments. The next 30 minutes of sleep I got before my real alarm waking me was not the last half hour of rest I wanted before starting my Monday. Needless to say our apartment was swamped with police when leaving for work.

November 5th marks the one year anniversary of my grandmothers death. A full year of holidays without her. It has certainly been weird at times. She was the closest person I have ever lost, I'm terrified of when it hits closer. I bought flowers tonight in hopes of making it to her grave, but when the sun set at 5 and the idea of sitting through rush hour set in, my heated blanket sounded better than wandering through a dark, cold, and wet graveyard. I'll make it out before the end of the week, it's the least I can do.

One week, four days until I walk the stage in celebration of my undergrad degree. It's such a big milestone, I can't wait for it to be official!

Tomorrow marks election day. November 6th, 2012. All I have to say is that at the end of the day we are "one nation under God".

Monday, October 29, 2012

Patience is Virtue

I've heard this saying for years, I wanted to understand it. There are really only two parts to understand; patience and virtue. Since patience is the core of this conversation, I'll begin talking about virtue so we can work our way into the meat of this post.

It is interesting the concepts I found about what virtue is. A virtue is good morality when it comes down to it. Okay, this is a good thing to follow, but as a Christian I can tell you that just being "good" in this world isn't going to get you through the pearly gates, but that's a topic for another time. Aristotle defined a virtue as the "golden mean" between two extremes, not necessarily just the middle. I like that definition. There are many virtues, patience just happens to be one.

Someone can teach you how to play baseball, but chances are if you've never bat before, you won't hit a home run your first try. You need to practice in order to learn this skill. Knowing the pitcher, the wind, your reaction time, velocity, weight of the bat, force needed to swing, a comfortable stance are variables in your ability to hit a home run. Most are unique to each individual and come as habit after practice. Now, think of hitting a home run as patience. Same concept.

You can be told over and over to be patient, but even someone yelling at me to hit a home run wouldn't make it happen.

"Patience is the level of endurance one can handle before negativity." How long you can become increasingly more irritated before a breaking point? I don't know if I like that so much because often being patient leads to a reward, not something negative. The longer someone remains patient that harder it is I believe, at least for me it is.

Clearly I struggle with patience, hence these feelings and research into this topic. I can only imagine it comes with practice and life is practice. I must learn the feelings and signs of patience to gain the trait. Knowing when to be patient is also important. Acting impulsively can be good in the right situation which is all part of learning the virtue. Acting hasty is the one extreme and inert would be a good descriptive opposite.

I've never been patient. I want answers and results NOW. I'm a prime example of the typical human reaction of wanting short term results even knowing waiting long term could yield better results. I don't want to believe burying an electronic in sand will ruin it, I want to find out for myself when I get that electronic in my hand. I don't want to wait for my money to accrue $5 this year, I want to use that money to gain pleasure now. Of course that's not how I see it, but it's easy to act that way. How many times do I need to experience the gratification of patience before I can have self-control to have it when I need it?

Surely my lack of ability to stay focused has a role in this. It is interesting. Time to grow up! 18 days until graduation.

"The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." 2 Peter 3:9

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Surly (Sir-lee)

The weather screams, I thunder, he cries, it shakes. I can't explain the past 4 weeks of my life. I just know that I want the next 7 done. Spoiler alert: this could end up to be a poignant post.

Stress is the basis for so much anger, detestation, and sentiment in this universe, it's not okay. If we were un-stressed humans, life would be way happier, obviously?

The cooling weather is cause enough to have me going stir crazy. The thought of snow covered roads, ruining new boots, and bitter cold have me disgusted.

52 days left of school. Even though the numbers seem to be decreasing, the it's still to many. I just want to be done. I'm tired of taking tests that distract me from work deadlines. I'm tired of homework that slashes my creativity. My art is on indefinite hold. I wake up the sun every morning and sing it lullaby's for bed. Me time seems non-existent when even my dreams threaten and challenge me.

 I'm stressed.

I want school to be done so I can look forward to bigger and better things. Right now I just roll my eyes to the uneducated underclassmen. I already spend 22 hours a week teaching. It's quite the lesson in management.

I got the new iPhone 5. It's quite the beauty. I guess after 5 years and 3 iPhones, I'm not as stunned as I was upgrading from a flip-phone to the iPhone. This is me being a product of the 21st century and living in a "first-world". I'm grateful.

I could talk more and vent more but I can't.


Monday, September 10, 2012

56-67-22

56 PEOPLE OPENED UP MY BLOG YESTERDAY! That's a high at least within MONTHS for a single day. Thanks for being interested in me, or at least bored enough to click over here.

67 days to graduation.

I'm 22 years old.

I keep playing over and over in my head all the things I have, all the opportunities I've had, and all the things I've learned.

I fear what may become of me. The point I am at could be the beginning of great change in my life. I can't stop thinking about my career. I've worked to be where I am. It didn't come easy. Now that I'm here I want more. You get educated to make money and be happy. Money doesn't create happiness and I'm on the deep end of persuading myself to stick to those principles. I'm being completely vague right now. I'm trying to say it's becoming way too easy to be sucked into having money be a motivator. I have been a poor college student with no money, a negative bank account, no savings, and bills to pay. Being in that situation, you look to the things you need and what makes you happy more than the fluffy stuff. Granted every second is spent worrying about how you'll pay everything off before money digs a deeper hole. I finally realize why my brother still drives a 200k+ mile 1990's Toyota Previa that, to me, seems like it's falling apart in every way possible. Why he lives in a duplex  on an air mattress (up until recently), doesn't have a dishwasher, cable, or a flat screen TV. Did I mention he is an aerospace engineer, with a Spanish concentration, masters in material science, and some other credentials I don't even know. It makes sense, even though I hardly see myself following in those footsteps.

I guess I'm glad to have people in my life that remind me of what's important when society suggests differently.

Luke 16:13 "No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money."

Sunday, September 9, 2012

CONGRATS

I've had my share of happy news since last winter and it all came together this week. I can finally talk about it. My first internship as an Industrial Engineer was last summer at ABB as I'm sure most of you are familiar. It was a great growing experience and I fell in love with the company and my job. This past February, I reconnected with my boss and coworkers and was invited back to work there. My internship was through a contract agency as well as when I went back to work this year. I got a couple dollar raise when I started back which I was more than thrilled about. After a couple months and some internal changes, I got the news that I was no longer an intern and I would get yet another large raise. As the summer progressed, and I've been counting the days til I graduate, my future career became more of a worry. I love my job, yet being contracted was not how I envisioned my future, so when other companies began to reach out to me asking for interviews, it was a tough decision whether I was going to pursue a job with a different company or keep my fingers crossed ABB would offer me something. Early August I received another piece of news that they were opening up an Industrial Engineering position through ABB. (In other words, my job.) I applied right away and in all fairness, my boss went through the interview process with other candidates. Although I was very sure the position was mine, nothing is ever certain until all is said and done. Well, this past Friday I was offered the job. Not only did they offer me the job but at the salary I asked for. :-O There was no thinking, I've thought about this enough that I accepted the job immediately. I was shaking so much on the way back to my desk, I'm surprised I made it. Months of questioning, hoping, and praying was answered. I HAVE A JOB! I graduate in 68 days. It's all working out so perfect and who am I to deserve it? Thank God! WOOHOOO

I am past my ears in debt from a private school that has given me a great education. I am blessed enough to have a better than average job before graduation to pay off my nice loans.


    Psalm 107:1
    "Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever."

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Routine

My alarm sounds at 5:30, bringing my restless dreams back to life. I manage to talk myself into not moving for the next half hour to which I smell the coffee brewing around 6 and throw my legs over to the side of the bed. Still asleep, I make it to the bathroom and turn on the light. The light feels like I'm looking directly into the sun. My 15 minute shower is all the time I have allotted to waking up and relaxing before the day truly begins. I go through my 20 minute routine of getting ready and professional, pour my thermos full of Medium Pike Place Roast Starbucks Coffee, feed my cat, and dart out the door. On the way to my car I'm collecting myself, making sure I have my work badge on, my work cell turned on, my shoes tied, and my hair in some sort of order. The 30 minute car ride  is filled with whatever music best describes the day. No morning talk shows. I hate hearing people in the morning. I feel as if the fellow commuters are my friends because I sit in traffic with them every day. The roads have ceased with vacationers. I get to work and say hi to everyone, the same as every day. Start my computer, and pray for no urgent emails.
The day is over and I can't wait to get home. To see my cat that is begging for my attention or to make dinner and relax. Sleep usually comes at 10-11pm depending on my exhaustion for the day. I certainly fill my day as to make up for all the years I slept until noon-1pm. My crazy dreams are back pretending they get a part of my day. Creating an imaginary world for a few short hours. As fast as I fell asleep, my buzzer is hounding me to get out of bed. And I think, where did yesterday go?

Routine is all too easy. It's a trap. As a continuous improvement engineer, routine is not my favorite. I'm always changing things and making them better. So how does it seem I fall into a routine? It's only when I think of it like this that I actually question my true fulfillment of the day. Oh well, I'm happy. Or too busy caught in my routine to not be happy.

On another note, my second day of school still sucked. A 3 hour physics lab with all sophomores really makes me question my sanity. When the prof. talks about needing this for your career, I laugh to myself. Being able to find the specific heat of water is a farce. Until every electronic equipment fails and I stop working for a global fortune 500 company, I don't care about specific heat of water. I'll have bigger issues if technology stops. HA.

Well, I have some nightly things to do before bed including some homework. UGH.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Hebrews 13:8

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

I Got My Lunch Packed up and my Shoes Tied Tight

I started school today. I've actually only sat through 50 minutes of class so far. I'm sick of it. I have super-senioritis, let me explain. I've been working all summer with people older than me, not younger, so the freshman and underclassmen in general seem obscenely young and immature. I've learned lessons being in the "real world" professors seem to have failed to teach me. Yet I've learned so much in school I may never work with. I am spending my day PAYING for school instead of getting PAID to work. =Losing money, not making money. Tough situation. So when I sit through an hour class of learning what my classmates did this summer and that if there's a fire, leave the room, I know I could be doing more productive things with my time. If I hear "didn't you graduate?" one more time, I might lose it more than I already have. No, I did not graduate. That's why I'm here taking a required undergrad class with you, moron. I can't take class seriously when all I picture is walking the stage in my cap and gown. The next 11 weeks CAN NOT GO FAST ENOUGH. ugh.

To get my mind off things, I should talk about another topic. I am pretty frustrated today. Not to mention a deadline I was just given at work that severely complicates getting things done. Working half days cuts my time in half. A two week project just got pushed back to 4 weeks because I'm only working half the time. Theoretically, I could do work from home but when a GOOD portion of my time is spent in the factory, that just isn't possible.

Okay, so the topic of my deceased grandmother. I picked some items I wanted from her house and now that the entire family has gotten their chances to look, my mom is bringing some stuff home for me. I'll tell you about the rest at another time, but I want to talk about a ring I got. I like jewelry, that's why I choose some of her jewelry. This particular ring is black Alaskan diamond, with a silver band. I've now worn it all weekend and have received compliments from many people. It's not just a ring. It has a story. I wish I could hear the story from my grandma about the ring, but the reminder is enough. Whether it was a gift she received and didn't even like, or something she wore on special occasions, I like it. I have a feeling it may be worth about $50. The sentimental value is something that will last much longer than $50 in my pocket.


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

First Day

6 days until the last first day of school for me. I mean it feels great to say that, but in reality I'll be going to more school in the future. Prospectively for an MBA. But this is the end of the road of continuous school. 19 years of wanting a new outfit for the first day and new notebooks and pencils. A fresh start, a clean slate. 79 days until I don't have to worry about professors and assignments. My Sunday nights won't be consumed by craming for homework/tests I put on hold to enjoy the weekend. No more disconnecting my internet and TV to study. 79 days....

Maybe one day I'll be able to talk about my job. I'm still not comfortable, in fear I'll say something I'm not supposed to tell the world. If you want to hear, ask. I could talk for days.

Well I'm going to bed.

Tell your parents you love them today. Thanks :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Spotlight

I've got enough canvases to fill an entire wall. Okay, not quite, but I'm getting there. I've been painting like crazy this summer. My first one was the best. Next one was nice but nothing great or note-worthy. Third was the worst. I gave up on the fourth before I even started painting, which isn't a good sign. It's hard for me to finish things I'm not totally invested in. I haven't quite figured out why I'm NOT like that at work....Anyways, my fifth painting is looking REALLY good and it's my biggest yet. I bought a print of my favorite painting ever. My painting of it hangs in my parents living room and I don't want to take it from them until I have something better to give them. :) It's Van Gogh Starry Night if you are curious. Stay posted, I may start selling my paintings and taking requests within my style.

I like attention. I did everything imaginable to be the center of attention when I was younger. I enjoy all eyes on me. It's funny I think like that yet seem to be so self conscious. Someone please explain that.

85 days til graduation! I'm trying to decide where I want to go for dinner after graduation with my fam/close friends. I want something like Carnevor except not $40 a plate. I don't want someplace I could go any weekend. Hmmmm guess I gotta keep thinking.

I'm going to start saying one thing I like about my job at a time instead of job liking overload.
I like that I stay busy and always have work to do!

"May the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 4:7

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I'm Holding on by a Limb

Holding on to SUMMER that is! This is SOOOO hard!! I love summer. The breeze that has been making an appearance around the wanna-be sky-scrapers of downtown Milwaukee is already making me want to cry. The season is changing and for the first time in almost 8 years I'm slightly excited. As temperatures drop, so does my college countdown. I'm holding on by a limb because my job search is also an interesting topic right now. It's not really a search. I'm being searched. But I'm starting to get the itch to know my future post the next 12.5 weeks. I'll let you know more when I can.

Shopping is the worst right now. When all the stores have BACK TO SCHOOL imprinted on everything around you and all you want is NO school. I guess I still dread school even when I'm this close.

The past week has been great not worrying about school. It's almost like a mini vaca. I can handle it. Now to figure out my sleep schedule so that getting out of bed before my alarm is screaming at me to move.

So maybe getting a head start at that bed time? Night!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Guess Who's Backkk?

So I missed the August 10th date I promised. Some other things came up and I haven't fully adjusted to having internet and cable back at my house! But needless to say, I have no lack of words, thoughts, or emotions to spill to the world.

Can you believe I've been writing regularly since I was 6?! That's 16 years of emotion put on paper. Does it apply to everything that the more you do it, the better you become? Practice makes perfect? If I had chosen to do anything else this consistently for 16 years I'm assuming I could  be pretty good at it. In that case, it still discourages me when I get less than perfect scores on school papers. Writing is fairly subjective. You don't enjoy every book you read and everyone has their own philosophy on correct grammar. I guess because I understand that, is why I can accept less than perfect scores on papers and not completely want to yell at someone for not understanding things the way I do. That's why I blog and journal. My feelings, thoughts, opinions, and grammar aren't graded. They're mine. Thank you for appreciating that if you do.

My birthday was already 2 weeks ago. August is flying by. This summer is flying by. 2012 is flying by. Why haven't I graduated already?! (91 days) Last summer I went through a phase of sadness watching others my age party their summers away. This summer I've been more selfish. When I see those people now, I feel a sense of accomplishment that I'm growing up and going places. That's not to say I'm not still slightly jealous. If time was going slow I'd be more worried and probably pretty bored or upset with my life.

If I haven't said this before, I definitely lack something in my body. Apart from having a super short attention span, I get crazy crabby when I get hungry. It's not like I turn into beast mode or the hulk or anything, but snappy, short-tempered, etc. How amazing is it that a simple fix like food cures it and that I am blessed to not have to worry about obtaining food at any time of the day? I learned about many cultures in my world societies class this summer that are not as fortunate.

Speaking of (wasn't that a good transition sentence?), summer classes are now over and I have a nice little 2 week break that I can dedicate solely to work! Something I can get used to in 13 weeks! :-D I still love my job and thank God every day for how blessed I truly am. I finally have a savings account that I'm putting more into than I am taking out! I'm going to savor that before I have to start making student loan payments. :'(

I'm going to Iowa tomorrow to visit my brother. I really like Dubuque, it's a nice place to go for a weekend every couple months. I don't mind the few hour drive either. Since my brother is one of the most knowledgeable, wise people I know in my age group, it's nice to have intelligent conversations with him. We can't thank our parents enough for how they raised us. :-D

Thanks for reading! Hopefully I will be able to keep you guys more up to date now!

Just for kicks, here's a picture of the cute face I get to wake up to every morning! :-D



Tuesday, July 31, 2012

108 DAYs

I'm alive. I have no internet or cable at my house. I can't blog at work. I can't blog at school. I've tried blogging in my sleep. August 10th I will be back. Thanks everyone!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

GREEN

Apple's Drama

If you haven't heard about the most recent Apple controversy, I highly recommend reading the article posted above. Let's discuss.

So, I'll highlight the article for those of you who did not read it. Apple resigned from the current certification they have with EPEAT due to new product designs. As the article explains, the new design that contrasts with EPEAT's standards is the retina display that requires batteries to be glued to aluminum. Honestly, we should have all see this coming with the uprising of higher pixel density for electronics.

Reduce, reuse, recycle. Who hasn't heard that before? Well, with the 'green' craze that swept our nation in the past decade, we went hard fast. We wasted no time eliminating what we believed to be harmful to the environment.

I digressed slightly, but back to Apple. In comparison to other electronic companies, they don't rank the best in sustainability. Is this the cost of having such advanced technology? This might be the first time I have seen a problem with one of my favorite companies. As an Industrial Engineer, I look at systems daily. My brain has been wired from childhood to find errors in systems and fix them. With this being said, I find it very hard to believe the work being done by Apple is the only way to do it and that no other way exists. You could ask a million why questions, but I'm assuming people from Apple have looked into those options.

What does this mean for Apple? With their desktop and laptop products no longer having this certification, will they lose sales because U.S. law regulates how many purchases can be made that aren't EPEAT certified? Or will they make up those sales with iPhone 5 sales? :-D ;) ;)

I think with a little continuous improvement, Apple will have this slip-up fixed in no time.

I still love you Apple.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Hott Hott Heat

I desire this time of the year more than most other things. I can complain about the heat and humidity as much as a dog panting after a long walk, but I truly love it. I think you know enough of my emotions on how I feel about weather so I might as well discuss other things frantically bouncing through my head.

Work is huge for me. I'm career oriented. I'm determined. I'm a "busy-body". These are all words I've spent hours determining (haha) I am. I can say over and over I love my job but I always ask myself why. In large, I convince myself of that. If you tell yourself you like/love your job, it's way easier convincing yourself you really do even if every day is hectic. My job makes me happy because people depend on me. To me, the things I do are simple, but many others can't/wouldn't do it. It is stable enough to be consistent but every day has new obstacles. I also believe this subject is like beating a dead bush because I can only discuss my work happiness so much. I'm already craving the next step. I'm ahead of where I even thought I would be at this point in my life and I find my selfishness wanting more.

My need for more is quite simple. I've seen and done so much already in my life that I want to continue that upward progression**:). Having feelings and adrenaline doing such extreme things makes daily life quite boring at times. That's why I'm always searching for the next exciting adventure to do.    I will be forever chasing that feeling. I'm glad adventures give it to me rather than other things of this world.

Relationships never fail to befuddle me. I can solve a complex math equation but can't figure out relationships. If only I could turn it into an equation. At least I know I'm not alone. Haha. But its a struggling battle for me.

I was recently asked if I see emotions as colors and that totally hit the spot for me. I do! My paintings completely reflect that. It's an easy way to express my feelings. A simple color. It just makes sense.

Onto my next battle. This week has tremendously added stress to my life. Why? Summer in Milwaukee. I love people. I hate stupid people. This is such a mean thing to say. I'm stupid sometimes. I live within spitting distance of Summerfest, the largest music festival IN THE WORLD. Something I should be so happy to have at my disposal, yet these 11 days make me cringe. Roads I travel every day are blocked by gobs and gobs of tourists. Traffic is ridiculous. Drunk people are everywhere. It really is not appealing to me. Milwaukee should pay me to deal with this crap.  Then you have the fourth of July and all the other fests and rush hour. It's just really annoying and probably even more so this year because I have responsibilities and can't be out enjoying myself every day/night. I will be happy when it's over except the weather changes as the people do.

Well this has been a nice rant. Thanks for your attention.
xoxo

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Into Everything

My diploma can't come soon enough (155days). I am no longer titled an intern at work. I've proven my knowledge well enough to be seen as an engineer and I can't even say I officially am. In one week I will be the sole IE at work (not including my boss). I will now be craming 80-100 hours of work done by two resources into less than 50 hours a week. It's weird to think I will have seniority if/when we hire another IE at 21 years of age and 5 months short of getting my degree. It's awesome that I have been recognized as capable. It obviously means something and I look forward to the future.
=)
Thanks for your prayers, I am ecstatic.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

No Title

I wish I had more answers.

I hate not being able to answer questions. I hate feeling awkward in a conversation I don't know much about. Thankfully, my smartphone has dramatically helped improve my up-to-date knowledge. I rely on the thing for just about everything. However, I think the most valuable information is the stuff that isn't as simple to find as a google search. That's why I'm over my head in debt from a private school hopefully teaching me more than anything you could find on the internet.

There's not a single day that I go to work and don't think to myself "I love my job". Other people I work with don't like it as much and try to find ways out, but I'm happy. I love responsibility, familiarity, and continuous improvement. I love being able to accomplish so much in 8 simple hours. I'm learning so much, it feels great. This could be a blog post in itself..I'll stop so that you don't vomit over my joy.

Back to the whole knowledge/information topic. I like sharing knowledge I have. But if you think for a second I'm going to post it all over the internet, well probably not. It would just become another searched topic with no credibility. So ask me sometime why batching is better than single piece flow, or how to set up your office so you can say you're as "ergonomically friendly" as possible, or how to calculate the material amounts for a kanban system. Guaranteed I could give you better answers than the internet.

I had my best semester (grade wise) ever at MSOE this past term. It's crazy. It took me 4 years to figure college out. Better late than never. I didn't have an easy semester. I had tough classes. So what does it boil down to? The most significant change this semester was going back to my internship. Working part-time in the mornings must have really had something to do with it. Whatever the case, I like the trend. I'm graduating in 169 days. Yes, I'm counting every day. I can't believe how far I've made it. My college graduation will be the biggest accomplishment of my life. It's been hard. It's been SO hard. I've really been able to prove determination to myself. You should look forward to reading my graduation post. I think it'll be a good one.

So, I encourage you to share knowledge with me. I love learning. (Crazy huh?)

xoxo

Stay posted




Monday, May 21, 2012

Crazy

As I grow up, things seem to get more complicated. I've known this for years, but who wants to acknowledge this fact?

My emotions are through the roof. I have tons of emotions all of which I show in various ways. Something I've also known for years. I can be a drama queen and exploit those emotions. I've been trying to figure out for a while if having so many emotions is a good thing. My parents tell me yes, some friends tell me no. I think it's both. I'm proud I have/show emotions. That's great! Not everyone posses this talent. Problem is, my emotions often get the best of me. My calmness can turn into raging emotions within seconds I swear. It makes me question if this means I'm bipolar. I don't think so, because my feelings don't seem to be that rapid or diverse in the short term. So then what? What are these ticks that set me off and prevent me from keeping a level head?

So we know I have lots of emotions. Where does this concept get me? It's a big step being able to admit and get to this point, but there's so much further to go. I need to understand control. Controlling the anger, sadness, and anxiety. I must sound like I have so many problems to you at this point. (Stick with me, I'm writing to help myself with the hopes you may learn something too.)

I haven't been able to get something out of my head recently. I hope you don't think I'm crazy for telling the world this, but it was recently suggested that I might have ADHD. I can't stop thinking about what this means. I'm scared to find out if I really do or if I even should, but it makes a lot of sense. The problem with knowing is then dealing with it, and every doctor today would just prescribe meds which I struggle with accepting that solution as right or wrong.
It would explain my struggles in school. My brain is different than most peoples which seems to agree with attention deficit hyperactive disorder. It would explain why the normal way of teaching doesn't work for me. It would explain why my attention span has been like 10 minutes for my whole life. I focus on things I set my mind to, but you know how draining that would be if I made myself focus on EVERYTHING? Apparently harder for me than most people. This would explain my emotional outbursts.Why when I let my guard down, I let emotions fly.

Okay, I'm still at square one. Congrats, I potentially have a problem. Now what? I want to change these problems. Obviously drugs are a fix. But there are so many complications of drugs. How long would I be on them? Would I get addicted? Would it affect my long term health? Do I really need a drug to change me? I want an intangible answer. I want to work on it mentally. I'm a strong enough person, I believe I could do it. I just don't know how. Professional help suggests the obvious answer=medication. I want psychological help. If the answer was easy, I'm sure this would have been taken care of years ago. Thankfully I'm almost done with school. I just wonder if it's something I'll grow out of. Hmmmm

"Turn your burdens over to the LORD, and he will take care of you. He will never let the righteous person stumble" Psalm 55:22

Monday, May 7, 2012

$$$

Keep your life free from the love of money and be content with what you have for God said "Never will I leave you, Never will I forsake you."             Hebrews 13:5

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Pursuit of Happiness

One of three famous rights in the Declaration of Independence, a good song by Kid Cudi, a great movie done by Will Smith, a phrase I can't stop thinking about.

Happiness comes from within. YOU need to learn what your happiness's are and GO WITH THEM. My goal is happiness. I like having an intangible life goal, there's always room for improvement yet it's possible to find what makes you happy on a daily basis.

Life isn't peaches and cream but I fully believe it is what you make of it. You can sit at work and say you're bored and unhappy or be at out and about and tell your friends you want to leave because someone is there that you had a feud with 5 years ago. OR, you can embrace the situations and make yourself happy.


Everyone needs a happy place. Whether that is an actual location or a state of mind. A happy place escapes the dreadful reality of chaos. If only for a second it gives you peace and comfort. I have a few happy places. I'll never forget the feeling of being atop a mountain in the Rockies. I've had this experience a few times. It's literally the happiest in a single location I've ever been. Seeing God's beauty. Being so far away from materialistic society. The scenery is unimaginable unless you've been there. The mountains rolling as far as your eye can see. The hard work to get to that spot. It's truly amazing and makes me soooo happy. 
Another happy place includes good music with a strong beat and meaningful lyrics. Listening to good music distances you from the noise of life. It puts a beat to your feelings. It's said in a way that you can't express. 
Happy places relax my anxiety, if only for a short time, it's still meaningful. 


So find your happy place, happy smell, happy thought, or whatever. The more you smile, the longer you'll live. 


My next challenge for you is to make someone else smile. It'll mean a lot. 


Ecclesiastes 3:12
I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live.


It's All in Your Head

I believe 110% that actions and feelings are all in your head. (At least for me) Famously, I'll ask, what does that mean? The second I tell myself something, my mind believes it and exploits that thought. If for a second I feel a stomach pain and tell myself I don't feel good, I make the decision to go with it or get over it. From that point, it's all in my head. I think that train of thought confuses me when I'm actually injured. I've broken numerous bones and had several injuries yet every time it comes down to differentiating actual pain from thoughts.
Am I confusing you yet?
What else is "all in my head"? I often assume things that people think about me. Hence my self consciousness. If I see someone look at my forehead I start thinking they noticed my large forehead.
My insecurities are my biggest flaw. I wish I could not care what people think for a second. It's all in my head for making myself think I'm not pretty, skinny, smart enough for whoever I'm trying to impress. Usually just myself.
I wonder sometimes how my thoughts became me. Why do I think how do instead of how I want. Why am I the person I am and not always the person I want to be? Why do people say things they don't mean? Is there really truth to every lie?

I need to go to church more. Then I'd find answers.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

High Risk, High Reward

I'm busy, I'm tired, I'm worn out. I pack my life with events because that's how I like it. I think I have high anxiety. Waiting is going to make me have a heart attack someday. I have a harder time waiting than I would making a speech to a million people.

I love my job. Going to work every day is refreshing. I don't mind the commute and sitting in rush hour traffic. It's my time to think even thought I'm still DOING. I like accomplishing things, being productive, making a difference.

School is hard. I have ultimate senioritis. I feel like I've passed the peak of my education. Who knows what will be useful in the future is what keeps me interested. I have 7 months until I'm done with school. The sad thing is I'll probably go on for higher education. HA! ugh.

I want warm weather. This high of 50 crap is not helping my stress. I tan for the pure pleasure of warmth, although I know the horrible effects. I bask in my car when it has been in the sun and super hot inside. Although that hasn't really happened yet this year. I still sleep with my heated blanket on not because it's THAT cold, but I just want to be that much warmer.

I've been on a big art kick lately. Drawing/painting, being crafty, whatever. Not sure why, but I'll go with it.

I want a new car. I got into my first..."accident". Kind of not really. Some guy didn't use his blinker or check his blind spot and cut me off. My drivers side blinker cover was destroyed and the fender was bent a bit. Annoying.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

GET ANGRY PEOPLE!

Your anger motivates me. It encourages me and invokes thoughtful conversations and intelligent research. It opens my eyes. Okay, I don't REALLY like anger, so what am I talking about?! I read a VERY interesting article and I, as a writer, want to share my thoughts. I'd advise you read How to Disagree before continuing so you can somewhat similarly share my train of thought.

Three years ago my brother and I wrote a book, What Gen Y Wants You to Know, in which we addressed many aspects about our generation. One heavily visited topic was the internet. I quote from the mouth of my brother, "...it's easy to say things online that you would never say to someone face to face." I thought was interesting because the article I just read literally said this same thing. If you haven't/don't want to read the article, the author addressed that we have transitioned into the age of online thinking in which writers no longer just write, and people read, but writers write and readers become involved in the topic. Asking questions, posing arguments, sharing deeper thoughts, and aspects. First, I completely agree. Each time I post a blog article, I share it on Facebook and within days/hours my friends "like" my link or share their comments. I wasn't writing to get feedback, but what did I expect? Anything less? Probably not.

The author of "How to Disagree" then goes into sorting and classifying types of disagreement. They are somewhat funny connections, but I'm not all that into it. I think that there is a large part of the population that makes snide, unintellectual responses to many topics, but many people can make good arguments as well.

I guess I just always find it interesting learning how society and the world changes with time. In a way that makes me interested in history. I hope you find this post interesting as well and are encouraged to leave your opinions :)

I'll talk more later.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Europe

Can someone tell me why the number of page views on my blog post, specifically Californication sky rocketed in the past week with viewers from Europe? I had over 60 people view this post within a couple days mainly from Europe. It was a post written almost a year ago and was not one of my finer posts....I'm confused!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Gone but Not Forgotten

WORLD!!! You haven't heard from me in over a month!! I'm so sorry. Let me just say, I'M BACK!
I always do this to you. When my life gets crazy, when so many personal things are going on that I can't confess to you, I hide. I keep those emotions and gossip hidden. I'm bad at lying and keeping secrets so for me I just don't talk. I have so much creativity built up inside of me from not blogging in the past month as to be ridiculous I feel. Life is completely a roller coaster and to catch you up on all that's happen since we last chatted could be a day long discussion. Of course, I wouldn't want to bore you with all of that so maybe I'll stick to the highlights and make some life discoveries along the way. Shall we begin?

I've learned and confirmed a few things in the past month. First, I love my family. It's unbelievable how awesome they are (even though you might think we are weird or crazy). Secondly, I have life really easy and absolutely should not complain about some of the things I do.

My personal/romantic life has done a lot of changing in the past couple months as well. I'll leave it at that. I am not comfortable telling the world about those issues quite yet. I will say it has caused me a great deal of stress and has been a large, time-consuming shin dig in my life. None the less, I've learned countless lessons and continue to smile regardless.

I started a new semester 4 weeks ago. I can't believe how fast it is going. I'm on the fast track to graduation. Yet in my mind, I'm trying to hold on to my young adulthood-ness as long as I can. (That is a recent realization, by the way.) It completely freaks me out to think that this will be my last spring break EVER and from here on out I'll be yearning for a mere day off or week that I might possibly get a break from the real world. I wish more than anything I had money to travel somewhere while I have a week of nothing planned. ANYWAYS, classes are going very well this semester. I haven't scored lower than an 80% on any homework, quizzes, or tests. I pray that God continues to help me do well.

I feel uneasy about talking about my professional life on my blog because this is mostly a personal blog so I don't want to tangle the two distinct parts of my life or say something that could be upsetting to an employer/future employer/coworkers. So, I'm going to say that my profession life is going good in my eyes. I'm thankful (SO VERY thankful) for the opportunities I've been given and that are yet to come. I could not feel more at ease for the major I am almost finished with at this point in our economic crisis. It makes me even more happy that companies recognize the importance of Industrial Engineers and that I like what I do. I am proud to say I have plans for the future. Okay, I can tell you more later ;)

I saw the Hunger Games this past weekend. I really don't want to be a movie critic. You can look up reviews if you want to know how it was. I think it was interesting, and I of course like knowing about all the hype and that's what I got.

Two major events have also happened in Milwaukee in the past month. I'm writing about these not only to hopefully help put the thoughts to rest in my own head but so I can look back and reference of when this stuff happened. My condolences go out to the family and friends of two young gentlemen, Thomas Hecht (age 28) and Jacob Winkler (age 21). Thomas Hecht went missing after the Water St pubcrawl, "Shamrock Shindig", on March 10th (which I attended). His body was recovered from the Milwaukee river nearly 2 weeks later. Jacob Winkler, a student at UWM, was on spring break in Panama City, FL when he fell from a balcony, ending his life on earth. Both of these instances bring tears to my eyes as they both hit close to home, especially at such young ages. My thoughts and prayers are with all those affected.

With that being said, enjoy the rest of your week.

Thanks for all your support and reading my blog!!!

Ecclesiastes 3:1-22
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; ...

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Learn This

When I figure it out I'll be a millionaire, but until then, I just don't agree with american education. Tests are LIES and I completely disagree with the method of testing. Testing as in paper and pencil and no resources and time constrained. My memory is fairly bad for a 21 year old and compared to many of my classmates, but that does not make me dumb or any less smart than my classmates. Because of having bad short term memory, I have learned to use my resources, each and every one. It has made me very organized. I write down a lot of stuff and am very clean. Anyways, back to tests. Having a time constrained test is very nerve racking for me. My mind focuses on the time and less on the material at hand. I hate the feeling on a test when I'm missing a piece of information that I could find in one second if I just had my notes or the book but the lack of remembering it means points being taken away. Tests are also hard for me because I often feel like I'm trying to be tricked. Some professors don't mean to trick you and others purposely do. I do best on exams that require writing or speaking. I love writing papers. The trick is using the writing style the professor wants, but most of the time it's easy for me to explain myself and I usually don't have a problem making papers long enough. It could be that I've been writing for 15 years, in fact I know it is.
I was also never taught how to study at a young age. Some people have the talent but many do not.
My point is, I'm sure there are other people out there, like me, suffering because of the education system. Smart people whose talent is being drained because of the education system while others have it easy.
My high motivation is what has gotten me this far. Being told I can't and shouldn't do something is my motivation to do it. (School wise, not legal wise.)
So my advice to others that struggle through the dumb American education system, stick in there. If you want it, go get it. If all else fails turn on the song Tubthumping by Chumbawumba.

"For the Lord gives wisdom; From His mouth comes knowledge and understanding"
Proverbs 2:6

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Amurrrica

This past weekend driving through miles of country terrain really got me thinking. I'm relatively young yet have lived in a number of very different locations. Everywhere from downtown St.Louis to a tiny town of 1,200 people in Oklahoma to downtown Milwaukee and places in between. Needless to say, I've lived in the country and I've lived in the city yet still asked myself this weekend which I prefer?
I've lived in Milwaukee for the past 4 years of my life. Every store a girl needs (wants) within close driving range (10 miles max). I've taken the bus with bums and been within blocks of violence. I am ever so used to cars, fire engines, police sirens, and yelling people outside my bedroom window. It puts me to sleep. Yet NOTHING beats seeing the stars on a clear night when you're in the country. Nothing beats the smell of a cow farm.
I am used to getting dressed up in dresses and 5" heels every weekend to go out and fit in with the other city girls. I drive like a Milwaukee resident. I know the roads to take during rush hour to avoid as much traffic as possible. I could tell you the top 5 restaurants of any style food I would recommend. I haven't used my GPS in months because I know how to get everywhere in Milwaukee, and I honestly rarely leave the city. Except this weekend.
Okay growing up in the country. Wearing torn up jeans to dinner on the weekend = totally acceptable. Following the speed limit is 10x easier because there's a less sense of rush. I drove a combine before I could drive a car.
I said this weekend that if I'm ever rich I want a house in the city and the country. But still don't know which I would like more. We'll just have to wait and see.

It's just extremely nice to get away from what you're used to and take a second to just think. Or not think.

This week is my 2nd semesters finals week. I have 2 exams and the biggest presentation of my undergrad career this week. (Woa that feels weird to say.) After this week I will have 9 classes left in college and will be graduating this November. My senioritis is as worse as ever I can't imagine what it will be like in the fall.

As always, keep me in your thoughts and prayers :) <3

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

FRAZZLED

I'm sitting in class, my body is anyways. The professor is talking a million words a minute but I might as well be listening to Chinese because nothing is being retained. My stomach is in my throat. I sit emotionless because everything is combined and confused. I want to throw up or cry or punch something, but I almost can't even move.

I'm overwhelmed. I'm nervous. I'm scared. I'm angry. I imagine this is the closest I've felt to a panic attack yet I sit motionless. What happened to my peace of mind and relaxation that I had just a short time ago?

I feel like if I let all my feelings out right now I could talk for hours.

Do I have a lot to say or nothing to say?

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Roller-coaster

This past week has been a complete roller-coaster ride for me. Extreme highs and lows within hours time frame. I feel like my life is being bipolar right now, not me. I'm usually fairly good with dealing with stressful situations especially because college has brought it's fair share in the past 4 years.
Job interviews and offers and uncertainty and answers. Love and fights.

I don't know how to go about this post because most of the roller-coaster from this week is fairly confidential.

I've had to prioritize. Simple things and complicated. Prioritize my homework, friends, life. I've had some thoughtful and deep conversations.

I first want to say how important God is in my life. It's hard for me to talk about this much and it's sometimes awkward because many people are scared away by overly enthusiastic Christians. But with my dad being a pastor, I've been raised around religion and know quite a bit about the bible I'd like to think. You don't have to have my beliefs, but respect them. I would like for my close friends to at least be Christian because it's a shared understanding.

After God comes my family. My parents and brother are the most important people on this earth to me. They come before anyone. I can't explain it if you don't understand.

The following things get cloudy. Right now school is third most important. Education is the future. It might become obsolete, but it's the experience and basis.

Just to be clear, I'm young and learning every day. Expect big things from this girl. xoxo

"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path" Psalm 119:105

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tips to Splitting the Bill

I've gone out with my friends NUMEROUS times in my life, honestly waaaayy more than I can count. Almost every time it gets to that awkward point when the bill comes and everyone needs a different way of paying especially with plastic so common. People with cash often get the short stick because hardly ever do you whip out change at a restaurant. I've been at a dinner that we were over $30 short on the bill after a couple of people gave even more than their portion.
SOOOOooo, I was thinking about bill paying etiquette and hopefully this will be useful to someone.

1. Pay attention to TAX AND TIP! When you order something on the menu that says $5, don't plan on paying $5 for your meal. There is food tax and tipping is a must, it's not fast food. So when you split a bill, split the tax and tip!

2. Before anything is ordered ask the waitress to split the bill. These days, most restaurants can do that fairly easy. If you tell the waitress first, she won't have to remember at the end who had what, and it will solve the problem right away so there's NO confusion with money.

3. Don't pretend like you're all mathematicians and can figure out how to split the bill. This inevitably takes countless minutes adding, subtracting, dividing, and double checking. Some people round 20 cents up to the next dollar, some people round 50 cents down, you can't divide the tax evenly because each persons meal costed different, it's a mess. Not to mention everyone at the table starts to get restless when their meals and drinks are gone and the bill is not paid for.

4. Don't leave before the waitress has processed the check. Only exception is if you are close friends. I've had where people will leave behind cash they owe towards the bill and when the bill comes find out they owe more. The people that leave dinner early are usually short on cash and are scared to see the bill. If you plan to go to dinner with multiple people, why would you plan something else shortly after? Rude.

5. TIP! If you can afford to go out to eat, you can afford the tip. 20% is quickly becoming the appropriate amount. There are exceptions if you had poor service but this is considering the service was good. Don't make excuses about the waitress so you can skimp on the tip. When you do it every time you go out to eat, we notice. If you've never been a waiter/waitress, you especially don't know what it's like to be in her shoes.

Money is an awkward topic, but it can ruin friendships if not handled properly. Take these simple tips and avoid problems with going out to eat with friends!

If Life Were Perfect this Would be Heaven

Decisions and changes and 50 degree weather in January in Wisconsin. What is going on?

I took an exit survey that all seniors take before graduating. My stomach is in knots. I'm THAT close to the end, there's no turning back.

I feel SO much pressure, like I'm being pushed through a tube and I don't know when it ends and what's going to happen to me when I come out.

I'm making millions of decisions daily. The least of my worries is deciding what to wear for the day. Can you believe that?! Haha.

Things are changing in my life and around me with each passing second. I feel like I'm holding on and my hands are slipping.

My friends and family are so supportive of me and I couldn't be thankful enough. So many people have reached out to me that I would never expect them to care. I feel like the dumb ignorant one that's been ignoring everyone/thing.

This post is depressing. Sorry.

What job do I want, where do I want to live, who do I want to see? And then I think back to moment and realize I have decisions to make before I can think about those.

What kind of person are you? Do you think positive or negative? Do you over think or under think? I TRY to think in the middle. I like to think positive and make it happen, but prepare myself for failure. I over think about every possible outcome of a situation, it's horrible. Sometimes I don't think enough and make dumb decisions, who doesn't?


Psalm 37:3
Trust in the LORD and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

PICK ME PICK ME!

As part of undergraduate education, it is stressed over and over that you need to be able to market yourself to potential employers. At the beginning of college I thought this was awesome. Finally a time I got to talk about me and why I was the best. After seriously thinking about why I was the best for the job and all that hubbub, I began to realize the difficulty in doing that. You are bragging, yet you can't sound like you're bragging, you have to be enthusiastic, but not psychotic, you can't leave out important deal breakers, but too much detail is overwhelming. It is seriously an intricate art to perfect being able to "sell yourself".

Here I am, in my fourth year of college, and soon enough all these skills I've been taught will be more important than ever before. I've been able to open my eyes to numerous settings with all sorts of different kinds of people, it's crazy to think sometimes I'm still so young and there's so much I DON'T know...

I'm still trying to figure myself out, but part of me thinks that's one of my best attributes. The fact that I am constantly trying to learn more about me and my emotions. How do I react and why? How do I want to act given my morals and ethics? I think writing the past 15 years of my life has helped me IMMENSELY to be able to express myself appropriately.

Okay, so I've spent a considerable amount of time during the past four years deciding and figuring out what makes me the best person for the job and why an employer should hire me above my colleagues. Of course there are the cookie cutter answers that anyone could say to pretend and make it seem like they are, which is why I have tried finding words and descriptions above and beyond the norm.

I learn fast. New situations and new processes, I believe I pick up pretty quickly. For example, we are getting a new computer system at the bookstore which is going to require printing new labels for a lot of merchandise in the campus bookstore. My boss had to show me how to print the labels, which was on the upwards of 20 steps to complete from start to finish. These steps include clicking the right button/option, inputting the correct data, choosing from options, etc. He showed me once and then let me try with the expectation he would be standing over my shoulder with me asking questions every step or two. Well, he was called out of the office and I was left alone. By the time he returned a few short minutes later I had about 5 items with 30-50 tickets each printed and ready. He was stunned that I needed no help and had picked up the process after one example. This has been happening throughout my life, I've noticed. This doesn't mean by any stretch of the imagination I'm perfect and everything comes easy for me, because it certainly doesn't. I ask questions when I need to.

Okay, moving on. I am personable. I haven't figured out what it is about me, but I often feel like people just come to me. All sorts of people. Picking up a conversation with a stranger has never been that hard for me and people like talking to me. I listen, I don't give advice, I give my experiences. To me, experience is more powerful than advice. What good is advice if it is not backed with anything? People often say I'm nice to talk to because of my smile. Thanks to my parents spending thousands of dollars on my teeth and me suffering through years of braces and retainers, maybe that has something to do with it? Hahaha. My smile is genuine. I don't see myself when I'm smiling but maybe it's an inviting signal? A sign that I'm relatively laid back and passionate at whatever I might be smiling about. It's my way of expressing accomplishment and excitement.

I haven't figured out how to appropriately tell this next attribute to employers (which is why I usually leave it out), but I think it's important in why I'm a good employee. I know how to have fun. I think that it is SO important to enjoy your work. If you're not happy, forget any sort of production. I haven't loved every job I've ever done, but I've learned how to make it enjoyable. I also know how to have fun outside of work which is important to have a balanced life. Thinking too much about work is stressful. I'm not saying work should be limited to 40 hours a week, but 168 hours is excessive. Anyways, having fun, laughing, and being happy is very important to me.

Okay, I've had enough of talking about me for one day considering I just applied to a bunch of jobs, edited my resume a thousand times, and updated a few of my online career profiles. Needless to say, I am Berea'd out for today. =)


DO YOU REALIZE WHAT THIS MEANS?!

Many websites are protesting the SOPA/PIPA bills congress is currently trying to pass. It's 2am and I'm trying to work on a report while being stopped from doing so because of the protests occurring. Yes, it's 2am and I might be a tad delusional, but could you imagine running into this problem every time you attempted writing a report? Sure, a short while ago the internet was not considered a reliable source for kids to use on reports, but recently it has become the ONLY source to use for educational purposes. Why have we been so strictly taught to site our sources if this is what it's coming down to??

The very content you are reading now could vanish if the piracy act is passed. I'm not a politician or knowledgeable enough to understand the detailed consequences of the passing of such bill, but it would hurt a lot of people, companies, and certainly jobs. Is that what America needs right now? We have bigger issues to be focused on most certainly.
Should I really be worried that the content I post on my blog is a copyright infringement?

Okay. This is an inside job. SOMEONE is benefiting from this torture...

Can you honestly say that it is a crime to produce free information?! When you hear that nothing is free, honestly America, nothing is free?!?!

As a generation Y baby, I am completely offended that my point of view will not be understood by congressmen. Generations preceding ours do not understand technology or the internet quite like we do. Most were not raised with it, we were. I'm sorry if this offends you, it's not meant to. We were just raised in a different time and place.

Copyrights are a fine line. Why make it more fine?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Success for Berea

This weather and school end coming to a near has me thinking about what I ultimately want. Along with my brother talking about "making it". So how do I define success? What do I want/wish for? What's my dream?

I think it's good to aim high. Know what your dreams are. These dreams might change in the next 40 years so it's not something that will disappoint me in the next year.

First of all, I think happiness is the root of success. Being happy is key. Bad news; money is evil.

Success to me wouldn't come until I could share it with my family. I want to spoil my parents and give them things they've never had. I would want my brother to be happy. (Realistically he will probably reach this point before me.)

I want my pilots license. Bad news; it's expensive and it's time consuming. I've known numerous acquaintances who have begun pilot's training/schooling and not been able to finish for various reasons. I hate failing and giving up so I probably won't attempt it until I have money and time. You can laugh a little because those are both sought after quite a bit, but for the sake of me dreaming, it's my dream.

I want the best of both worlds. I want to live in a warm climate and maybe play in the snow once a year. Hence, I would want more than one house that I could vacate to whenever.

I want a nice car. This isn't at the top of my list, but I like cars. If it gets you from point A to point B, that's all you really need a car for, the rest is extra. Okay, I want a European stock Nissan GTR. I can only wait to see what will be around if I ever have enough money to buy one.

I want to travel. I wish I could safely see and experience every nook of this world. Traveling costs money. You can travel cheaply, etc etc, but the places I want to go and things I want to do wouldn't be very cheap. I am extremely interested in different cultures. I LOVE learning about people and things that are so different than myself. Our lives are so routine sometimes we don't realize there are ways of life so different than our own. I want to know things that are common sense to other people and cultures that I don't know. It fascinates me and I love when people talk to me about it.

I could go on about things I want. I could get super detailed, but I'll keep it to that list. Those things might change by next week, month, or year, but I will have had to have "made it" to have those.

On to my studying....

(One of my favorite bible verses-->)

Matthew 19:26 “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Monday, January 16, 2012

Visceral

Hello.

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

It is the end of the first day of our 6th week. We've passed the mid point of this semester. I feel the stress beginning to descend. 5 weeks left to finish senior design. I feel like we are at a good place, but the thought of the end coming so fast is pretty scary. It's no secret us seniors are getting senioritis. Some more than me, me more than others. It's crazy to even think of my life post-school. I'm sure most adults reading this know my feeling. I can only try to relax. I try not to think about it too much and leave it in Gods hands. Realistically, I can't just sit back and pretend like everything will just fall in place. I have applications to do, resume to update, people to talk to. Deep breath.

So, my personal life you may ask..I don't have much alone time. I don't get hours alone to think about deep issues like I maybe used to. Aside from school, work, and homework, my free hours are consumed with my boyfriend. It's great to have a friend that's virtually always there for you. I suppose I value my time with people more than my alone time. I've never been good/happy at being alone. That's Berea.

Thanks for checking in. Stay posted. 2012 is gonna get busy!!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6