Last week, commenter Tree of Knowledge asked if I'd do a request on the "evidence of teaching excellence" thing, so I think that'll be next on the job search series, followed by a post on prepping for conference or phone interviews. Look for us to get back to that Monday.
In the meantime, something of perhaps more general interest. We're at a point in the semester when things can get difficult, whether we're grad students, lecturers, or proffies of whatever level. The shine of the new semester has long ago worn off, and it seems like we're drowning in a sea of work, barely keeping our heads above water, and sometimes not even that. Personally, this has been a craptacular discouraging week for me: a few rough things have come my way, and once I start down that road, it's hard for me to see anything but the negative side of things, and that's an ugly spiral to be in.
So, in an attempt to turn things around, I invite commenters to chime in, here at the end of a week: What's one thing you accomplished this week that you're proud of?
Here's mine: Over the course of the week, I finished grading three stacks of essays and two of midterms. These had been hanging over my head like a dark cloud. I just had more come in, but I got the old ones out in time, and if I work at this pace over the weekend, I should get the new batch out before the next ones come in on Tuesday. My goal is to buy myself 24 hours with no grading to do.
How about you?
Workwise - I made it through the week, and now I'm going to a conference. Yay!
But the best thing of my week had to do with family. Halloween trick-or-treating was postponed due to inclimate weather. So we had a Halloween party for our kids that was awesome. It was terrible timing because I had to get up at 4:00 am today to get ready to get on a plane, but nonetheless, it was an amazing, fun time. Made me feel a tiny bit less bad that I'm going to miss trick-or-treating with them because of this conference. But only a tiny bit.
My Kitchen Aid had a melt down, quite literally: the toaster sitting next to it melted the power cord. And I replaced the power cord myself, which involves taking the whole thing apart (down to the gear box!) and then putting it back together.
That made me quite proud.
I had an excellent meeting with the director of a large collaborative project my lab is part of in which I laid out my vision for the future of the collaboration, and discovered that my vision is highly consistent with overall plan.
I read far more of *The Aeneid* (which I start teaching next week) than I'd intended to last night, just because I was enjoying it so much. I haven't taught it in 6 years, and I don't remember it being this great!
(It was, otherwise, a ridiculous week--a bad cold whapped me down on Monday and then I got to experience much of the bad side of being chair. But none of those problems need to come home with me this weekend.)
".....What's one thing you accomplished this week that you're proud of?......"
I didn't kill The Tutor. Though I did make plans to do so. So that's two accomplishments of which I am proud.
Thirty-one days of October in my sight are as an evening gone; I have alarming stacks of grading to do; as for research, ha. But this week, I have trapped two feral cats and had them neutered, and hope they will accept full-time positions (with fantastic benefits) as indoor kitties. Fingers crossed.
The first of my big fellowship deadlines is this Tuesday, and I think I will be able to sleep Monday night!
Also I ate a lot of candy this week.
I manage to submit a conference paper to my discussant on deadline, while also meeting a f*ckton of job app deadlines this week as well.
Then I slept for ten hours.
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