Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Getting a Job III

I have given up hope as far as getting a job goes. It's way too late for anyone to hire me for holiday help (Christmas is in a day!!! how exciting is that?!?!?!?!?) and I sure am not going to work on Christmas or the day after. Then I'm leaving for New Years and then I'm going back to school.
It's probably for the best because I have been able to do a lot of helpful stuff around the house in the time that I would have been doing useless work for some store in the mall or whatever... also I'm very glad to have the chance to hang out with people I don't see very often such as high school friends and my sisters who now live in different states.
This is kind of really bad though, because now I've made no money for my China trip. I can not just let the school pay for me to go. I can't. I'll feel like such a good-for-nothing mooch that I would probably just feel guilty for the entire trip.

I know what this means:
I'm going to have to get a job in Oakland and work evenings and weekends this semester.

I mean, yes, I already work in the costume shop, but they are only open from 9-4 every day, and most of that time I am in classes! And yes, I will be working more hours there next semester due to a couple night classes, but most of that extra money will go to my voice lessons (which are ridiculously expensive by the way!!)
So... that leaves me the option of working another job at a store or a restaurant or something to earn some money, since no one here in Bethel wants me.
But I will deal with this once I get back to school...
right now I'm a bit busy enjoying my holiday. :)

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Getting A Job II

Still no job. I went into American Eagle to ask about my application and the response was, "We're still processing them; we get about 30 applications a day."
... soooo... I guess that means I'm not getting a job there anytime soon.
Yesterday, though, I was shopping at Borders and an old friend of mine happened to mention that they're hiring. It has been a dream of mine to work in a bookstore for years now, so I filled out an online application and sent it in. I'm still waiting for a reply from them, too. I almost cannot dare to hope.
I have yet to call the babysitting job... I've been on a rather strange schedule lately... Actually, I don't have a great excuse for not calling. I'm really just afraid that she'll say, "No, we don't need you" like every other stinkin' place I've applied this break. Christmas is now only 5 days away and I have made exactly $0. This sucks.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Getting a Job

Because I am a poor college student, I am not in possession of the $2,000 or so that I need for a trip to China this spring with the Heinz Chapel Choir. My solution to this problem was to apply for work in the mall as soon as I got home from college and hopefully start working two jobs so as to make enough money in time.
Silly me, I should have known that the mall is no place to get a job the week before Christmas! Not only is the mall, at this point, full of people shopping, thus making it hard to navigate at a speed faster than a saunter, but in addition, most of the shops have already hired for the holidays. Boo.
I have thus far been turned down at Bath and Body Works and aerie, which only yesterday gave me applications to fill out, which I unsuspectingly completed last night in hopes of, oh, I don't know, maybe at least getting an interview? Now, a mere 24 hours later, they are no longer hiring. Well then take the "hiring" sign down and stop handing out applications!!!
Thankfully, I still may be subbing at Just Dogs Gourmet, where I worked this past summer, and I might have a babysitting job or two lined up.
Also, I hopefully have an interview forthcoming at American Eagle. Hopefully. I will keep you posted on this.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Home Again, Home Again

This is bizarre, but I really really don't want to go home. It's bizarre because I've spent the past few weeks counting the days until I could call Dad and say "Come pick me up! I'm packed and ready to go!" and then sit back to enjoy a whole month of no school. I've been melancholy and mopey after having to come back here after all those weekend visits in November, and I was hit by a wave of homesickness when I saw my family for the Christmas Concert and couldn't go home with them. I just assumed that the cure for all this would be, well, I dunno, going home, but apparently not, because right now I'm feeling like exactly the opposite may be true. Now that classes are over and I have nothing to worry about, I wish I could just stay here and veg, but I can't. I have to go home and get a job for the holidays and help get the house ready for Christmas.
I am missing my little room quite a bit already, and I haven't even left yet! I'm just trying to clean up a bit and I keep noticing things that I am going to miss so much once I'm back in Bethel Park. I miss the lamp by my bed that I don't have to cross the room to turn off. I miss my pencil cup that always has a fresh pencil in it for my anal little self to enjoy. I miss my beautiful computer that is all mine, with no siblings bugging me to get online so they can play games or shop for who knows what. I miss Pandora, which fills my whole room with music and plays only the stuff that I like. I miss the sink and mirror that are all mine in the morning, with my makeup box and my whole wardrobe close by for optimal primping. I miss my bed with my favorite blanket and those two pillows that make sleep so delightful. This is my space and I am very, very reluctant to give it up. That is, of course, why I am blogging instead of cleaning and packing right now.

Now, that being said, there are some perks to being home.
For example, the shower is about 3 times as large, the food is free here and always available plus I am allowed to make it myself, there are cars here that I am sometimes allowed to drive, etc.
Possibly the greatest thing about being home, though, is the people here. I got to wrap my arms around some people that I love very much for the first time in a loooong time. You really can't beat that feeling. Plus it's hard to miss my dorm when I'm at home; I don't know why.

All said, I'm happy in both places and significantly less lonely here at home, so I guess both places have their perks.

Now, since I'm home and there are lots more people using the computer here and I'm not constantly logged on, it's much more incovenient for me to blog and much more convenient for me to journal. Also I have people to talk to here. So, don't be surprised if my blogs are few until I return to school from Christmas break.

Holiday Blessings to all!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

The Our Father

Everyone knows the Our Father, or at least some of it, I'm sure. Alright... in case you don't:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our tresspasses as we forgive those who tresspass against us, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

There you have it. Short and sweet. Yet this one prayer that so many people pray so often is absolutely rich with meaning! I myself was unaware of this until recently, so bear with me if you already knew this stuff.
Of course Jesus Himself gave us this prayer to pray, so one would expect the very best, but the fact of the matter is that every phrase, every little segment of this prayer is positively chock full of meaning! In fact, the Our Father is pretty much a guide to how we should pray all the time.
Allow me to point out right now that I got many of these ideas out of a book that I just read, Taming the Restless Heart by Gerald Vann. I have added some of my own thoughts, but the real frame of this blog comes from the book, so thank you, Gerald Vinn, I take no credit for your work.

Our Father, who art in heaven...
Christ states right off the bat what our relationship with him is. He is the Father and we are the children. Yes, God wants us to be childlike in our prayer. Humility and respect are important here. But love is also a huge factor. We go to our dear Heavenly Papa for help because we know that He loves us and wants to help us.

hallowed be thy name...
God wants us to praise him before we go ahead listing all the things that we want from him. In fact, praise is God's favorite kind of prayer. I have a whole theory about praise, actually. (sorry if you've read the article about this already. I inserted an abbreviated version here.)
Praise is, ultimately, admitting that God is an all-powerful, all-wonderful being who is way better at running our lives than we will ever be. This leads to trust which in turn leads to peace.
Praise is also saying how much we love Him and how good He has been to us. I don't know about you, but whenever I say "I love you," even if I don't feel like I love you, it helps me to feel that love again. So praise leads to love as well.
Because praise is a favorite prayer of God's, we know that He is pleased when we praise Him, and it always makes me so joyful to know that something I've done is actually pleasing to Him. Remembering all the wonders He has worked in my life and in the world and praising him for them add to the joy, too.
Thus, lots of good fruits of praise! It's not a bad idea, really. Don't just talk to God when you need something; take some time to tell Him how awesome He is, too.

thy kingdom come...
We need to put our wants and needs in perspective sometimes. In asking for His kingdom to come, we are asking to be a part of the work that needs to be done for that kingdom. That is, ultimately, our purpose on this earth, after all: to save as many souls as possible as we do the work that He has set out for us to do. By bringing the Kingdom into this prayer, Jesus was telling us to keep in mind the work that He is doing on earth and our part in it. Our petitions must be in line with that work.

thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven...
Here we say, as Jesus did in the Garden of Gethsemane, "Not my will but yours be done." We ask that ultimately God's will be done because He knows best. He knows how to handle the dilemmas we face much better than we could ever hope to. Prayer must not thrust forward our wants without taking into consideration the will of God; we must always wish for our will to be bound to our Lord's so that we want the same things.

give us this day our daily bread...
Now we finally express our needs and our wants. We ask for the graces that we need to get through the struggles in our lives and for the things we need to do His work.
There is no need to list all of the things that we want and need, though; "our daily bread" is a symbol for all of that, everything we could possibly need. In His wisdom He already knows what we need, without us having to say every little thing.
It is right and good to ask Him for things; it shows our proper dependence on Him, the creation's dependence on it's Creator for sustenance. We should never be afraid to ask.

and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us...
Basically, we should treat others as we want God to treat us. We must live in the Spirit of Christ if we pray in the name of Christ. Thus our prayers commit us to a whole way of life. With this line we make our sin a condition for the granting of our requests, so we sure better strive for sinlessness! Also, in treating others in a Christ-like manner, we make our prayers into actions so that others may see the goodness of the Lord.

and lead us not unto temptation, but deliver us from evil.
Once again, we admit our dependence on our God in stating that He is the only thing that can protect us from evil and temptation. He is our Rock, our salvation, and our only hope. By fixing our eyes on Him we can perhaps further adopt His will as our own.

I hope you have enjoyed my little coverage of the Our Father. Hopefully it opened your eyes to the prayer, and prayer in general, as Mr. Vann opened mine. :)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Baking Soda Mornings

I'm sure you all know the common uses for baking soda: cooking, cleaning, and banishing yucky smells from refrigerators and shoes. Lately, however, I've come across several interesting new uses for this lovely household favorite. So of course I decided to try them this morning. Enjoy.

Use #1: Brush your teeth with a baking soda paste to whiten teeth.
Trial Run: Yes, this morning I brushed my teeth with baking soda. It hurt. Not only did it leave my gums with a slightly burning, tingling sensation, but it also tasted horrible. I'm talking seriously horrible. On the bright side, it did seem to whiten my teeth about a shade... if that. I'm not sure if the prolonged usage necessary to see real results would be worth the burning and disgusting flavor.

Use #2: Rub a paste of baking soda into skin for exfoliating benefits.
Trial Run: This worked surprisingly well. I rubbed the paste in and let it dry a bit, like a mask, then rinsed it off. It wasn't the initial application of the paste that exfoliated so much as the rinsing off. Afterwards my face felt tingly fresh and smooth, and there was a blushy pink to my cheeks that hadn't been there before. Perhaps it also helps circulation, too? Sweet!

I swear that I did not make these up, though how reputable my sources are is a mystery that shall remain unsolved for now. You may try these tips, as they are not copyrighted, but I refuse to claim any responsibility for mishaps connected to this blog. Yes, my tips come with disclaimers. What of it?