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This last weekend I took a continuing education course in Excel through my local community college.  It was surprisingly good, and I’m really glad I did it.  This is something I can put on my resume, and it gives me more confidence in the one program in the Microsoft Office Suite that I felt very unsure about.  Now all I have to do is secure a job, and I’ll be set.

Or, you know, go back to school for a useful certificate/degree.

I also went to church this Sunday.  A new one.  It was also surprisingly good.  I think I will go back for sure.  And I’m looking forward to going back.  It was time.

That’s all.  Life is just one big jumble of trying to find motivation to find a job, in the midst of doing all the little things I want to get done.


Did you know you can buy toy mice for cats that are almost as large as they are?  For example, check this out.  You can get one very similar at Freddy’s for $17.  But… really?  $17 for a toy?

Today I decided to make my own.  I spent a total of $5 on fabric and made two.  Granted, they don’t have eyes or funny noses, but I left off anything that I knew the cats would simply tear off (and then try to eat).  I even put a bell in the middle of each so that they would rattle a bit.  The bottoms and sides are corduroy, the top is red burlap, the ears are some fuzzy material, and the tail is rick rack.  I also lined the burlap with plain cotton material to give it stability.  I think they turned out pretty cute:

Please don’t remind me that I probably should have used my time to look for jobs.

“…we kiss.  And it feels like we have just shrugged off the world.”
~Jim Shahin

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day, and although I am not celebrating it like all of you couples might, I thought I would acknowledge the day.

I’m going to make some Atkins approved treats for my family: Raspberry Meringue Heart Shaped Cookies, and Peanut Butter Cookies with the bottoms dipped in dark chocolate.  Each cookie should have less than 5g Net Carbs when they’re done.

The peanut butter cookies are an easy recipe: 1 cup peanut butter, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 egg.  Form into 24 small cookies.  Bake at 325 for 13-15 minutes.

I’ve also been using the most delightful sugar mix: C&H Light.  It’s half sugar, half Stevia.  You use half the amount the recipe calls for (Stevia is very sweet), and it works well for baking, unlike using just Stevia (which also has a distinct flavor by itself).  So, for the above recipe, I only used 1/4 cup C&H Light.  What I like about this is that there are no artificial sugars in it, which I do not like in principal or in practice.  Real is always better.

Anyway, I hope you all have a great Valentine’s, regardless of your relationship status.  Because, let’s remember, single people are people, too.  [Shameless plug.]

I’ve decided to not go to Korea after all.  I know.  I know, I know, I know.

But if you know me at all, or if you’ve read this blog long enough, you should not be too surprised.  It’s what I do.  (Make tons of big decisions in small amounts of time, changing my mind quickly.)

Here’s the thing.  There was absolutely no peace about the decision, just anxiety.  And I couldn’t eat and felt sick to my stomach, both the same tells that I have gotten whenever I’ve made a decision (or been about to make a decision) that I knew was a bad idea.  This one was just a little harder to decipher.

I wanted it to work.  And maybe if I didn’t have the kittens, I could have made it work or made it into a not-bad decision.  And I know throwing the kittens under the bus sounds ridiculous, but I’m certainly not saying they were the only influence.

So that makes 3 jobs I’ve turned down in less than a month.  My next goal is to find a job and say yes.

1. No matter how much of a good thing Korea might be, I still feel like any change is bad.  So I’m spending too much time worrying about everything: about getting there, getting the kittens there, doing well at the job, finding friends, not missing home, not missing friends, not missing family.

What is it about me that desires and longs for adventure, but shuns the very thought of it the moment it appears?  I have no amount of bravery in me.  It is good that I have signed a contract, that I am putting things in motion, that I am getting ready.  But I am so afraid that it might turn out to be a bad idea, or that I’ll miss everyone/everything too much, or that I’ll just plain suck at teaching English.

2. Getting the kittens there is going to be much more trouble than I realized.  Let’s start with the rabies stuff.  Korea is rabies free.  That, along with their new requirements, means I have to get the kittens a rabies titer test to make sure their levels of antibodies are high enough.  It’s not enough that they have a rabies shot, but they need this proof.  Well, here’s the awful thing.  Apparently only one lab in the entire USA does the test for exporting animals, and it costs about $300 per cat and might take up to six weeks to get back.  Um, I’m leaving in six weeks.  I kind of need it back before then because I do not want to have to put my kitties in quarantine.  (Oh by the way, I almost died/went into shock/couldn’t even speak when the gal quoted me the bill AFTER my vet appointment yesterday. Thank goodness for parents who will help with money…)

I also have to get a health certificate for both of them, and get it certified by the USDA vet in our capitol city here, which means I’ll have to drive on down for the day.  I seriously want to just spit in all their faces when I’m thinking of all the work involved.  Not to mention money.

And of course I already feel all sorts of guilty about the fact they will be in a holding tank in kennels on the flight for over 12 hours.  Without me.  In a scary, unfamiliar, uncomfortable place.

So, I’m trying to be excited, and hopefully that will happen eventually.  But I have a feeling I won’t really feel excited until all my paperwork and the kittens’ paperwork is in order.

So, I’ve spent a lot of time dithering about Korea.  And this last week, I told everyone that I wasn’t going to go.

Then I had an interview last night and got an offer today.  And it really looks like an ideal situation.  Plus it’s teaching experience.  And all of a sudden, I found myself signing the contract and emailing it off.

That’s right, folks.  Sometime in the end of March, I’ll be off to Korea for at least a year.

I almost said no.  It’s a huge decision for me, and a huge step into the unknown.  Therefore, it’s terrifying.  But if I never say yes, then I’ll never go, and I’ll always regret it.  This is one of those great opportunities to grow, to learn, to experience a new culture. 

Now all I have to do is get all my paperwork (and my kittens’ paperwork) in order.


Hey, don’t write yourself off yet
It’s only in your head you feel left out or
looked down on.
Just try your best, try everything you can.
And don’t you worry what they tell themselves when you’re away.

It just takes some time,
little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

Hey, you know they’re all the same.
You know you’re doing better on your own, so don’t buy in.
Live right now.
Yeah, just be yourself.
It doesn’t matter if it’s good enough for someone else.

It just takes some time,
little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
everything (everything) will be alright (alright).
It just takes some time,
little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

Hey, don’t write yourself off yet.
It’s only in your head you feel left out or
looked down on.
Just do your best, do everything you can.
And don’t you worry what the bitter hearts are gonna say.

It just takes some time,
little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
everything (everything) will be alright (alright).
It just takes some time,
little girl you’re in the middle of the ride.
Everything (everything) will be just fine,
everything (everything) will be alright (alright).

I think that when I’m depressed, I purge things.  For instance, I’ve just deleted another 80 or so people from my facebook, and I’ve deleted my Twitter account.  I think I start considering what matters, what is helping or hindering me, and then I act accordingly.

Not to say that people don’t matter, but honestly, I don’t need hundreds of people on facebook that I never interact with.  They just take emotional energy that I don’t have available to give.  The worst part is when I feel guilty about deleting someone, but if it’s someone that I haven’t been friends with in years, with whom there is no significant interaction, then there is no reason to keep them… Right?

I also begin distancing myself from people who I feel like I give time/emotion/energy to, but who never seem to reciprocate.  Because I’d rather have only a few good friends than many superficial friends.  My introverted self can’t handle the masses.

And in the end, I still only have one person on facebook that I’ve never met… Barry Rodriguez from World Next Door.  I can’t delete him.  I’m still hoping to meet him someday in real life.  (And then he’ll fall in love with me, naturally.)

I need a job.

I just have to share, because I am about to eat this for the 4th time in a little over a week… Soooooo good.

It’s a basic Chicken Parmesan recipe.

Per Chicken Breast:
1/4 c. grated fresh parmesan
1-2 tsp sliced green onion
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp melted butter or olive oil (the kind you use for marinades)

Mix cheese, onion, lemon juice, and butter/olive oil.  Dry chicken, sprinkle with salt & pepper.  Press cheese mixture on top.  Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes or until done.

For the side, cut up a tomato.  Simmer with a little olive oil, garlic, basil, oregano (and cilantro or other herbs if you desire), and salt to taste.  If you want it a bit thicker, add a tsp of tomato paste.  OR use a can of Italian style diced tomatoes.  Your choice.

Eat the tomatoes with the chicken, and give your mouth a taste of chicken heaven.