Tuesday, September 28, 2010

One Step At A Time

As you know, last Monday I had a phone interview for a Career Services Coordinator position at MIAD. After I got off the phone, I was really uncertain about how it went. I felt like I was out of practice, so of course, I kept thinking to myself, "Yep, I definitely *bleeped* that up." The guy who interviewed me told me they would notify finalists either by the end of last week or early this week. The negativity in me creeped out and based on my uncertainty after the phone interview, I thought I'd probably be out of the running. Flash forward to last Friday. I went to La Crosse for Oktoberfest (an entry on that crazy weekend to be posted soon), and because I adore my co-workers from UW-L, I made a point to stop in and visit people. Get this. While I was IN the Career Services office talking about all my job-related frustrations, my cell phone rang. I looked down and saw a Milwaukee number calling, so inside I was freaking out, but on the outside, I just casually muted the call. I got an encouraging pep talk from everyone reminding me that I'm far from out of the running in terms of getting a job, so it was kind of ironic to get a call about a job while I was there. Turns out, the call was for an on-campus interview, wahoo!! It's happening next Wednesday (Oct. 6), and I'm really excited. Based on the interview details I received, it'll be quite a bit different than the other interviews I've had. First, I meet with the director of Career Services and get a tour of the building and what not. Then I meet with the interview committee which consists of these people: Director of Career Services; Director of Human Resources; Director of Academic Operations; Assistant Director of Library Services; and Dean of Students. For those of you who are unfamiliar with position titles in higher education, what you need to know is that I will be meeting with some very important people. Holy moly, I'm nervous! They're just people, Renee, they're just people. :) Anyway, the whole process will only take 2 hours, which seems like a cake walk considering my other interviews were anywhere from 4-7 hours long. Kind of funny, I have to drive 7-8 hours round trip for a 2-hour interview, but hey, if it gets me a job, then so be it. This whole driving to Milwaukee thing is becoming quite familiar (this is my 3rd on-campus in the city), so hopefully this one's the one. I'll keep you posted!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Fall Festival

A couple weeks ago, I took the three oldest kiddies to the St. Mary's Fall Festival. Initially, I was under the impression that Dave and Court and all the kids would be going, but that wasn't the case. Right after church, I got a couple semi-frantic phone calls from Peyton saying, "Nae Nae, I asked alllllll the aunts, and no one will take us. Can you please take us?!?! You don't even have to take Nash!" Because I love them too much and because I'm not good at resisting the begging, I cleaned out the car and went to pick up Peyton, Lia, and Austyn. On the way to the festival, I gave them the talk about how I fully expected them to tell me where they were going because they have a terrible tendency to run off without saying anything. About 5 minutes in, I was already missing Lia. Awesome. That's about how the entire 2 hours went. Thank goodness Austyn is little enough to still listen to me. Not to mention, out of the three kids, she was probably the best at the games. She quickly adorned herself with all things princess (go figure) and multiple other *cough cough* worthless toys. All in all, it was a good time, but yet again, I was reminded of how chaotic it can be trying to keep track of multiple kids at once. Dave, Court, I give you lots of credit! :)

The Princess

In the process of being transformed into a tiger.

Leave it to Lia to come up with the COOLEST face paint idea that day.
After much hesitation, Austyn went with the classic butterfly.
Also, the girl in the background begged to be a tiger too after seeing Lia.

Peyton with the baby pigs. So cute!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Enough is Enough!

Okay, rain. Seriously. Go away. I feel like summer didn't exist this year because of all the rain, and now we're sitting here listening to all the flood warnings because we're going on 5+ inches. Bla. I do have to say, though, it does bring back my old childhood thought process. When I was a kid, I used to envision what we would do if it ever flooded here. It was quite simple. I thought we would sit on the livingroom floor and play Monopoly. That's it. Back then, I thought houses were invincible, so I pictured water going up passed our windows while we were engaged in an intense round of passing "Go" and buying hotels. Now that I've entered reality, I realize it's not quite that simple! The funny thing is, I don't even like Monopoly. It seriously never ends. Perhaps I envisioned that particular game knowing it'd be awhile before we could do anything else. Anyway, no board games today, but there is certainly enough rain for a flood (see the pictures below). It's quite annoying, actually. For instance, right now there's a road closed sign sitting directly in front of our driveway because the road we live on is flooded. Looks like I won't be going too far. It's not like I really have anything to do, but knowing that I'm "stuck" makes me feel very restless. And not gonna lie, I have a big fear that it's going to interfere with my plans to get to La Crosse tomorrow. Since there's virtually no good way to get to there from here, I have to take a lot of back roads. And since I have to go South into one of the most flooded counties (Wood) to get there, I'm fairly certain the drive will either be extremely unpleasant or entirely nonexistent. If I can't get to La Crosse for Oktoberfest, I will be PISSED. I live for this weekend, so rain, like I said. Go away. You will NOT ruin my weekend.

Part of our backyard.

More backyard. It's flooded across the road too!

The crick is overflowing!

The neighbor's yard.

Monday, September 20, 2010


I'm back! Sorry for the delay. The past week has been crazy, and I've been a little cranky, so the blog wasn't exactly on the forefront. Anyway, I had my phone interview with the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design today! As I mentioned in the previous entry, today marked exactly 2 months since my last interview. I'm not sure how to say this one went. I was really nervous in the beginning, but I definitely warmed up as the conversation continued. Honestly, it didn't even feel like a "real" interview. He explained some things about the position (i.e. the salary, what the position would entail, etc.), and then just asked me a few basic questions like:

1. Why are you interested in Higher Education?
2. Why are you interested in Career Services?
3. Are you comfortable working with such a targeted student population?
4. Are you willing to perform a variety of administrative functions?
5. How soon could you start working here?

Given some of the past phone interviews I've had, this one seemed way too general to be for real! I guess I won't complain though! He said they would be contacting finalists for on-campus interviews early next week, so it sounds like the process will continue to move along quickly. After my interview today, I also applied for an academic advising position at UW-Madison. This one wouldn't start until mid-December, and honestly I'd almost prefer that. My biggest fear out of all this stuff is that I'll get an offer from one school while I'm only in the middle of the proccess for another job. There's no way I can turn down one job for the chance that I'll get another one, you know? Ugh, this whole process is hard. I just want to be interviewed for a job that I really want and actually get it. Novel idea, huh?! I'm not going stress about the whole "I have an offer before I'm ready to say yes" idea though, because it hasn't even happened yet. Whatever goes down, I'm just happy that I've had some solid interview experiences and that I have such a good support system behind me. I'll keep you posted as the process continues!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Living the Unemployed Dream

Just the other day, I saw some family friends who I hadn't seen in awhile. They are aware of my current job status, so when they asked what I've been up to lately, I coyly responded with an, "Oh, you know, just living the unemployed dream!" Obviously got a chuckle or two out of that one... Anyway, it did get me thinking about a lot of things, primarily about the fact that it's been almost 2 months since I've had an interview of any kind. Yes, TWO months! Talk about discouraging. And it's not like I haven't been applying. I have been! I don't know if the competition is even stiffer now or what, but I literally have barely heard a peep from any school I've applied to lately (unless, of course, it was to tell me that I was no longer being considered for the position). Fortunately for me, my luck changed a little today! Yesterday, I submitted an application to the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design for a Career Services Coordinator position. Talk about a quick turn around, but I woke up this morning already to an email requesting a phone interview for the position. Wahoo! So, after comparing schedules, I have a phone interview on Monday, 9/20 at 2:00 p.m. Kind of freaky, but that day marks exactly two months since my last interview. That could be good or bad, we will see. :) I have a ridiculous amount of support from the people I worked with in Career Services, and all my family and friends are really excited too. I do have to confess, I'm kind of freaked out. In the position announcement, it said the anticipated start date for the position is late September or early October. In case you haven't noticed, today is already September 14th. That means my life would be uprooted almost immediately if I were to get the position. A job is long overdue, but now that I've been home for a month and a half, I'm worried that I almost got too comfortable! On the bright side, if I get it, at least it's only Milwaukee. It's not like I'd be moving to Germany or something. Anyway, cross your fingers for me. I'll let you know how it goes!


Last weekend, my dad got this bright idea to make homemade apple pies. I've been told all my life that he makes a wicked homemade pie crust, but this was the first time I'd ever witnessed him in all his baking glory. Little did we know, the whole ordeal would end up taking much longer than we thought it would (primarily due to a severe lack of preparation). I did enjoy being able to help a little, and here's a rundown of the day:

Step one: Take Peyton along to pick out good apples.
Step two: Peel the apples.
Step three: Frantically search for all the necessary ingredients.
Step four: Mix the pie crust ingredients.
Step five: Bitch because we don't have the proper utensils.
Step six: Roll out the dough.
Step seven: Put all ingredients in the pie dish.
Step eight: Put top crust on the pie.
Step nine: Bitch because we don't have enough crust to cover the pie.
Step ten: Bake pie for an hour.
Step eleven: Repeat.
Step twelve: Actually remember to put sugar in the next pie. :)
Step thirteen: Devour the pie along with ice cream.

Okay, so there were a few minor glitches along the way (i.e. the apples took forever to peel; we had like zero of the necessary ingredients to start out with; the rolling pin handle wouldn't turn; the dough often fell apart; there wasn't enough dough; and we forgot to add sugar in two of the three pies). All in all, it was a long day, but the pies tasted damn good and it was quite the test of patience for everyone involved!

Enjoying the fruits of our labor.

Monday, September 13, 2010


“It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, and more faith to abide by thought-out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind.” (Love this quote.)

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Last weekend for Labor Day, I went golfing with my parents and some of their friends. Keep in mind, I've only gone golfing once in my life, and that was in high school. The only reason I was convinced is because we played best ball, which is much more appealing to the sucky golfer than regular golf. If you're unfamiliar, here's the jist: You split into teams, and each person hits their ball. After everyone goes, each team has their next hit from wherever the best person on the team's ball landed. Since we had an odd number of people, we just split into two teams. Me, Al, and Tina were on a team, and my mom, dad, Bill, and Nancy were on the other team. My team won by one stroke. Yeah, we're awesome. :) I took several pictures that day, but have been instructed that I can only post certain ones. One thing I didn't catch on camera was Nancy flinging my mom out of the golf cart, but it's fine. They can tell you alllll about it.

Partners (The Winners)

Partners (The Losers)

Excitement over my first good shot! :)

Golf in action. :)

Saturday, September 11, 2010

September 11, 2001

“Forgiving does not erase the bitter past. Instead, forgiving what we cannot forget creates a new way to remember. We change the memory of our past into a hope for our future.”

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


If you're anything like me, then you also have an unhealthy obsession with Tarjé (aka: Target). Somehow, it is totally possible to walk in that store for one thing and come out with $100 worth of stuff you didn't know you needed until you heard it calling your name from the shelf! The worst part for me is that I can usually fit anywhere between $100-$200 worth of stuff in one bag. ONE BAG! How is that possible?! Anyway, my love affair with the store has not ceased, so I was curious when I woke up and saw this article on Yahoo. It's about things you should and shouldn't buy at Target. Take a look if you're as avid of a Target shopper as me! :)

Sunday, September 5, 2010


A couple weeks ago, Erin and I went to Jill's house for dinner. On the drive over, I heard an ad on the radio that was promoting a Bucky Covington concert. For those of you who don't know, he was on the 5th season of Amercian Idol--he placed 8th overall. Anyway, I felt kind of geeky wanting to go to the concert, but when I got to Jill's, I asked Erin what she was doing on September 3. Cautiously, she asked, "Going to Bullshooters to see Bucky Covington??" We must have heard the same ad on the radio! Anyway, we decided to get tickets, so on Friday night, we went. We were playing darts in between musical acts, and all of a sudden this older guy from a radio station came up to us and said, "Are you girls the backstagers?" Obviously we weren't, but jokingly we said, "We could be." That's all it took. He said, "Fair enough," and he brought us to the line to meet Bucky Covington. To be honest, I felt kind of guilty, because there were people in line who had either paid money to meet him or had won contests for it, but Erin and I just got randomly plucked out of the crowd. Eh, well, when ya got it, ya got it, right?! :) Anyway, we waited in line, and then we got a little bit nervous. People were shuffled into a room, the door was shut, and then you never saw them come back out. We wondered if we were about to get murdered. When we got to the front of the line, they took us in the room, and people from the radio station immediately started taking our pictures. Supposedly our pictures will be posted on their website...Pretty sure I didn't look attractive in one single photo. It felt like paparazzi, so I awkwardly asked Bucky if that's what his life is like every day. He chuckled and said yes. So, we got our picture with him (see below), and then they shuffled us out a different door. We were literally led through the back beer cooler (which we asked if we could stay in-they said no), and then we came out some different door. Sneaky, I tell ya! All in all, we had a pretty good time! And on top of that, Erin just passed her 4th and final CPA exam, so it was a good night to celebrate. Wahoo!

Meeting Bucky in the infamous back room
We were really excited after meeting him. :)

Friday, September 3, 2010


After having multiple discussions with people about my recent blog post entitled "17 Again?", it has been decided that maybe I don't look quite as different as I thought I did 7 years ago. Like I said in that entry, maybe it's just wishful thinking on my part, but I really don't think I look the same. Or maybe I just don't want to admit it. I don't know why I care...most people would be thrilled to look almost identical (with the exception of a few little changes) that many years later, but I'm not sure I am. Maybe when I'm 40, I'll appreciate it. I think I'm probably just sick of it because I've heard it all my life. "No way are you that old." "You're so tiny." "Are you ever going to grow up?" "I hate you for staying so little and not having to exercise." "I bet you could fit into your 7-year-old nieces clothes." "Nae Nae, I'm almost as tall as you." [From the nieces and nephews]. "We'll need to see a second form of i.d." "Are you legally a midget?" "Your head makes the perfect armrest." "You must be kidding." [When I tell people my real age or that I am old enough to have gone through 6 years of college]. I mean, seriously people, I have heard it ALL. And notice how many of those comments are associated with my size. Just because I'm little doesn't mean I'm young. Come on now! Okay, that's probably enough of a rant. I guess I just have to start accepting the fact that I still look like an awkward teenager.

Hit Me Up On My Celly

So... I've recently been hanging out with someone who doesn't have a cell phone. I know, if you're anything like me, you're thinking, "Who the frick doesn't have a cell phone these days?!" I still struggle with the concept. I don't understand how anyone wouldn't love the ease and convenience of having such a handy litte device at their fingertips. For instance, last night I had to do research on my phone on two separate occasions. Someone needed to know how to make an unheard of alcholic drink. Let's Google it. When is daylight savings time this year? Let's Google it. I mean, come on, how awesome is it to be able to have immediate answers to all your questions?! Well anyway, after a somewhat lengthy conversation with said person, I was put in my place about why it's okay not to rely so heavily on my cell phone. One thing he said was, "People who need to find me know how to get ahold of me." True, very true. But what if you want to get ahold of someone? And how do you remember everyone's phone numbers? And what if something happens to you--how do you call someone? It's a mystery how he did it, but somehow he was able to explain away all my questions (quite easily, I might add). I tell ya, maybe I could learn a lesson from all of this. After all, there was once a time in my life when I didn't have a cell phone. And guess what? I lived. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not about to give up this phone anytime soon, but at least I can recognize that having it permantly attached to me probably isn't quite as necessary as I think it is......