Friday, August 2, 2013

Cover letters and stuff

I am conflicted. About the future. About the present. Shoot, even about the past. It always feels like time is just passing me by, like I have to wait for something to happen before I can start living. Not to say I'm not living my life cause i'm still getting on with it. I just don't know where I'm headed or what I want to do. I'm always scared I'm making the wrong move. 

So after a year of working part time at my job, they made me full time. And it's a decent job, the pay is...ok. It's better than unacceptable but nothing to swing from the chandeliers about when you live in a high cost of living place like metro dc. I mean literally for the past year I have been gunning for them to make me full time. I'd bug my supervisor that this job was too much work to be just part time. I'd work tons of extra hours whenever they needed me. I am efficient and organized, whereas my boss is the creative type. She loves me cause I came in and made her life so much easier. This job previously was just a bunch of tasks divided up among several full timers and part time employees. I arrived and took all those things on and made it clear, "wouldn't it be great if I was here full time!" And so now I'm full time. I can't stop thinking about what I'm going to do next. 

Seriously, I just "got" here and I already feel like this is not the job for me for the rest of my life. I mean sure it's fine for a couple years. I wouldn't say that I can't learn more here cause I know I can indirectly. Not in this specific job but from the organization as a whole and from the people in other positions I work with. But since those things aren't quantifiable in dollars, it's hard to think about that as a benefit when your job just barely pays you enough to just cover your living expenses. 

And then I think, well when will I ever earn "enough". I mean technically, if I can cover my bills than it's enough right? I mean I could even manage to save some money if I ate beans and rice and eggs everyday and didn't drive all over the place. 

I have been wanting to go to grad school basically since I graduated but there has always been something holding me back. And now, I can't decide if it's really worth the investment. I suppose that really depends on what you study and what type of job you plan to get when you finish but we've been interviewing for another position at my job recently and it's really made me question some things. First off, people barely look at your resume. I had to go through 50 some applicants for my boss and weed out all the bad ones. I don't have time to read through your work history and it's boring. I glance at it to see if anything interesting pops off the page but mainly I go for the cover letter. This is your chance to truly sell yourself. So many people use a generic cover letter and don't tailor it to the job and don't really talk about their experience. 

(As a side note, this was funny to me. Years ago on best of craigslist I read a post from rants and raves about cover letters and the poster talked about crappy cover letters and then posted a great cover letter. I modified that cover letter for every job I applied for after that and always got called for interviews. So as I was reading the cover letters, what should appear but my go to cover letter! Practically word for word the same as the one I read on craigslist.) 

Then I give my boss the top 8-10 and we went through them with the other person interviewing with us and we chose the ones we were going to interview basically from the ones I had already picked. So most of the top ten have masters degrees. and experience of course. But it makes me think two things. One, you practically need a masters degree to even be considered for jobs these days because everyone you're competing with has masters degrees. And two, people with masters degrees are going for a job that is basically comparable to the job I'm doing now! It might be one pay grade higher than where I'm at but I actually never looked up the job when it was posted so I'm not sure exactly what the pay range is. Do I really want to go back to school just so I can get a job that is slightly better than the job I have now? And if I study something different, I have the problem that I don't have any experience. Practically all my experience in the last 7 years is ESL. I'm interested in so many things but I feel like once you're in education you are practically STUCK in education. And if I'm being honest what I really want to do is open up my own little boutique hotel in a beach town in Mexico. 

Ok, so i don't actually think I'm stuck. I truly believe it's never too late to do whatever it is you want to do. i just haven't really decided what that is right now. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

"Without new experiences, something inside of us sleeps. The sleeper must awaken." – Frank Herbert 


been sleeping, but feeling motivated today =)

Friday, March 15, 2013

In like a lion...can you believe it's March already?

Forgive me blog readers, I have sinned. It has been many many months since my last blog post. Believe me, there has been quite a lot going on but not much I can share right yet. Husband is still in El Salvador. Did I mention his waiver was denied? Yeah that kinda sucked. We're in the midst of refiling but it just seems hopeless. I really do try to think positively but, I don't know. I've been working a ton, trying to pay down debt. If anyone is out there, write to me in the comments! Tell me how you're doing, include a link to your blog if you have one. 

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Hola!

I've been back in Maryland for just over a month now and I feel horrible for not blogging more. I have no immigration updates for anyone who's wondering, we're just still waiting. I've been camping out in my mom's basement for the last month and I'll be moving into an apartment at the end of July. I got a new job at my old job, so I'm working at the same place with the same people but just a different, better position. I also have some huge news that I can't share on the blog but if you're interested email or facebook me!

While I was in Spain, I had started jogging doing the C25k training program. I've been trying to keep up with it here but between the 104 degree temperatures and not being able to get a routine going, I've been really slacking. Hopefully once I'm in my own place I'll be able to get a better routine established. 

Honestly it feels so good to be home. I loved Spain but it was pretty lonely. I do however miss gazpacho and olives and sidra. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

concentra-te

Ok so on the one hand, I've been doing much better the last few months, but this is comparatively speaking with fall and winter. In reality, I've just been lazing around doing nothing. It's time to focus. I have five weeks left in Spain and yesterday I just laid around being depressed about how I wanna go home NOW and what am I doing here and why can't I just go home and blah blah blah and on and on. Well, julie, STFU. Five weeks is nothing. You've made it this far, it's been seven months. Only five weeks left to go. Five weeks left and we can add it to the list of things you completely finished and didn't quit even though you were kicking and screaming the whole way through.

Spain
4 months in El Salvador
year of AmeriCorps volunteering with the boss from hell
semester abroad in Mexico
university-only changed your major five time but the important thing is to finish.

I think it might be getting longer than the list of things I have quit. The thing that made most of these experiences bearable and got me through to the end was making at least one good friend at each step. I wouldn't have had nearly the great experience I did in Mexico if I hadn't become friends with Traci. Out of AmeriCorps, I got Elizabeth, through El Salvador I met Jen and a ton of facebook friends who've been exiled throughout Latin America. And from Spain I got Ryan and Joey. I can't think of any good friends I made in university except during study abroad. It's hard when you go to a commuter school though.

SO, five weeks left to get myself ready for Maryland. Things to do:

buy a car
find an apartment
find a job
apply for grad school
study for gre

I already spend hours looking at apartments on craigslist which is pointless since they'll be gone by the time I get home. So my goal for this weekend is to apply for three jobs. Maybe it's a little early still but it doesn't hurt to practice writing a few cover letters. I know, doesn't sound like a good time to me either.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

feel better

I was cleaning out my drawer and found this "to do" list for my time here in Spain. It's from November 27, 2011 and while the only thing I can cross off the list is feel better, I can definitively say, I feel much better these days. 

feel better

Monday, April 23, 2012

Riguas

A couple months ago I picked up this package of sweet corn flour (or mezcla de maĆ­z dulce). I thought it looked interesting and maybe it would taste like Cheesecake Factory's sweet corn tamale cakes. And then I never got around to trying it. Today I stopped being lazy and mixed up the batter according to the directions on the bag. Well it doesn't taste anything like sweet corn tamale cakes at all. But as I was eating these little semi-sweet corn cakes, I knew I'd eaten something really similar before and then it dawned on me that they taste exactly like riguas. I've only had riguas in El Salvador but they're kinda like corn pancakes. A quick google search brought up a picture of the flour I was using which said it was good for making, among other things, riguas from El Salvador.


I don't know if I have it in me to make tamales while I'm out here but that is on my list of things to attempt for the first time. I have corn husk wrappers to make tamales de elote but I don't have any banana leaves to make chicken tamales. Plus they just seem like a lot of work, so we'll see.