Hello blog friends!
Wow! What a whopper of a year this has been! I have loads to share with you...
The Beast is nearly conquered and it has taught me a lot:
1. Radiohead is wicked awesome to write to
2. Squirrels are an effective distraction to thesis writing. Just be sure not to leave peanuts on the outdoor table with your laptop still open as they do not understand that it’s rude to walk on a computer.
3. I still haven’t gotten over my math phobia although I’m good at pretending I know what I’m doing.
4. Cocktails have an astonishing way of making the words flow, although increases my dyslexia.
5. The excuse of writing a thesis can get you out of all sorts of things you would normally be obligated to do such as attending boring functions and chaperoning the 8th grade school dance.
6. When left to my own devices to get food, I will just resort to eating cheese.
Mudflap girl from the Grilled Cheese Truck, which I have been stalking
7. I apparently have a very complex obsession with superlatives.
8. The Beast makes an effective door stopper (email from one of my committee members: I have to tell you that I actually could not open my door this morning due to The Beast. I got it open a crack, had to put down my bag and squeeze in sideways because The Beast did not allow for further opening of the door. Impressive!)
9. Always listen to your advisor, especially when she tells you to say no to something.
10. You know who your friends are through this process - anyone that can put up with me right now is a saint!
Now, since The Beast was so big, I thought it was worthy of its own soundtrack:
The good news is, from where I sit today, I can actually see the light! I defended The Beast on Wednesday, and it went great. Several people that mean a whole bunch to me were able to attend - that was very cool. Following my presentation, I had a big meeting with my committee, and it couldn't have gone better. I even got a star from one of my committee members, who was very sweet and said that everyone deserves to get a star on their thesis, LOL
I have been so lucky to have the most marvelous people on my committee (2 biology faculty and 2 science education faculty) that care a lot about the study I did (I looked at the learning that takes place in the first biology class that biology students take). I am humbled that these professors are open to taking a close look at how the instruction that happens in the class impacts the learning of students.
The good news is, I should be done with all of my edits this weekend and will have my thesis ready to send off to the library. What a relief! To say I am completely *giddy* is an understatement! :)
I wanted to share with you the gift I gave to my committee. I wracked my brain for months on what to give them - I wanted it to be something really special. One day, quite by accident, I found this amazing silversmith in the UK on Etsy, Clockwork Lemur. He made the most beautiful interpretation, in the form of a silver necklace, of Darwin's original sketch of the Tree of Life.
I was smitten when I first saw it. This ended up being a perfect gift given the nature of my study. I actually ordered the necklaces back in March and I absolutely couldn't wait to give them to my committee on Wednesday. I decided to make a special card to match:
It was a nice creative outlet - I can't remember the last time I had a chance to dig into my stamps and be creative. I found a picture of Darwin's sketch on the internet, printed it and distressed it. I used some fun stamps by A Muse Studio (and I'll admit I chopped off the beak of the hummingbird so it would look more, well, finch-like)
So with that I'd like to give a huge shout out to everyone who has been a part of my support system. I want to say thank you to all of my fabulous friends who were so generous and stepped in for me as guest bloggers these past several weeks: Novell, Krystie, Dawn, Tracy, Nora, Sherry,Rachel, Donna, Elena, Mom and the Chiquitas, Cheiron, Jenn, Glenda, Martha, and Michelle. There was simply no way I would have been able to do any posts without these awesome ladies! If you have a chance to visit their blogs and spread some love, that would be wonderful!
I grateful to be at this point in my journey and feel so very fortunate for all of the amazing people in my life that have lifted me up throughout. Needless to say, I can't wait to turn off my brain for a little while and relax! Any recommendations? :)