I'm in the final stretch of my grad program. Summer is just so close that I can actually see the light of the tunnel! Now that I'm student teaching full time as well as have a full load of classes though, life has pretty hectic and just crazy. From now until graduation day, it will be non-stop working and so a weekend away to San Diego to celebrate a friend's upcoming 24th birthday was just what I needed. We first grabbed lunch at an Ethiopian place and did a bit of thrifting before checking into the hotel. Once we got there, we glammed up for dinner, and a night of clubbing and bar hopping in the Gaslamp Quarter. We danced the night away until our feet hurt and I was eventually walking barefoot along the street. Just before this trip, I finally found a basic little black dress that I can dress up or down depending on the occasion. For that night, I wore it with a statement necklace, a mint belt, and a pair of black wedges. I forgot to ask my friends to take pictures of my evening outfit, but better pictures of my day outfit will be in the upcoming post! In any case, I'm sure I'll wear this LBD out a lot in the future and I'll be sure to get pictures of it then. For now though, you have pictorial evidence that I wear more than just jeans everyday!
Over the weekend, I kickstarted my mini-spring break by having a picnic with quite possibly my oldest friend, Tina. We've known each other since first grade, and I'm so glad we reconnected at a Christmas party in December. While nibbling on cheese, crackers, and pepperoni, and sipping on tea, we reminisced of simpler times when I was apparently fearless and would ask boys if they liked me via notes with checkboxes. Now our lives consist of figuring out who we are, what we want to do, and where we want to go. It just seems like a lot of people my age, myself included, are experiencing the quarter-life crisis right now. At 23, we're just in this weird, awkward transition where we're not financially able to be independent but we want to be; or we're getting restless of where we are and want to move onto bigger and better things. And somehow between now and 30, we should have a career in the making, be married, and maybe have a kid on the way. Some friends are closer to reaching these expectations than others. While I'm anxious to start my non-student life, I also want time to slow down a bit so I can enjoy being young and having the sky as my limit. Now that I'm approaching my graduation day, the golden question lately has been where I'm going to apply for jobs--am I going to stay in Southern California, or am I willing to uproot and experience a new place? Realistically, I have to go wherever the jobs are, but also, I want to enjoy the feeling that I can go wherever with nothing really tying me down. I'm going to apply for jobs all over California and will just have to see where life wants to take me.
I wore this outfit on Easter Sunday, and even though it wasn't the most festive outfit, I still liked it. A comfy tee, skinny jeans, minimal jewelry, and sandals were perfect for a sunny stroll at the lake with my friend, Andrea. I was supposed to post this sometime last week, but I never got around to it because it was the hardest and longest week of this program so far! It was the first week of my new placement in a first grade classroom. I didn't think moving down two grade levels would make much of a difference, but let me tell you, it's a whole different world! These first graders are so energetic that I was just so drained physically and emotionally my first week. I miss my third graders. They were my first class and I will never, ever forget them, but I am really trying to make the most out of this experience. I can already see a difference in my abilities and confidence from my first day of my first student teaching placement to my first day at this placement. This week is my students' spring break so I can rest up a bit before resuming student teaching full time. I still have classes though so I'm not completely free, but I'm going to make the most of it. I am determined to purge my closet and to get to the gym at least three times. Summer's quickly approaching and for once, I would like to enjoy going to the beach and pool without feeling self conscious about my body. My friends and I are also planning to go on a trip shortly after my graduation so that's going to be another motivation to get more active and to finish the final stretch of my program.
The marathon of all paper writing is finally over. I turned in my monstrous 100-paged, single-spaced paper and 15-minute video on Thursday, and enjoyed what was left of my spring break with (a little too much) retail therapy, movies, and Netflix. I updated my closet with some Spring things like this breezy, bright coral top. My patience paid off and I got these polka dot printed jeans for $25 at Gap! Even though I spent more than I had wanted to, I love everything I hauled recently and I know that I'm going to get a lot of use out of them. I've also been pretty good about cycling through my old clothes. If you had told me a year ago that I would be wearing polka dot jeans, I would have laughed in your face. The next type of denim on my list? Floral printed jeans! My style has changed quite a bit since last year so I'm going to clean out my closet pretty soon. I also bought a top for upcoming job interviews. I can't believe it's that time already where I'm practically done with my graduate program and I'm going to be job hunting.
I wore this outfit to brunch with friends on Saturday, and I'm most likely going to wear it again for fieldwork this week. During brunch, I picked up my old habit of comparing myself to others and what they have. It's hard still being in school and being in a different phase of life than your friends who all have full time jobs. It's weird though, because when I'm not thinking of other people, I'm not bothered by my employment status, rather I'm happy and even proud of where I'm at. The grass always seems greener on the other side, but when I really think about it, I like my side just fine. I just have to keep reminding myself that I truly love what I do and my life right now, and that this poor grad student lifestyle won't last for much longer. Today, I'm starting my new placement with my first grade class. As excited as I am, I can't help but continue to miss my third graders, but at least I can still visit them from time to time.
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