Sunday, April 12, 2009

a foretaste

We had Good Friday off of school, so this weekend has been extra long.  In celebration, I was able to take Thursday afternoon to cook a big pot of soup for my housemates, bake some cookies, and clean up around the house a bit.  The whole weekend I’ve been able to spend lots more time with friends, even while still getting all of my homework done, including a few non-school projects (e.g., my taxes).  The addition of just one extra day to the weekend opened up so much time!  I’ve laid in the sunshine, gone for long walks, baked three pies (!), eaten a meal with my family, attended a Tenebrae service on Friday and an Easter service today, made good food to have for leftover meals during the coming week, and cherished some friendships long taken for granted as I focused on school.  And I’ve still managed to finish all my homework!  What a blessing.  I’m hoping that this has been a foretaste of what the next year and a half of my life could be like: productive, useful work to keep me from being bored, but plenty of time to keep a neat house, cook healthy and delicious meals, and enjoy life with friends.

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 04/12 at 04:59 PM
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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Waiting for a Ride

On Tuesday and Thursday mornings I make a point of leaving my car at home and riding to school with one of my housemates.  It saves me gas and gives me a chance to catch up with one or more of the ladies I live with.  We all lead such busy lives that sometimes riding to school with someone is the only chance I get to see her all week!  We do have supper together on Sunday nights, and some weeks without that intentional gathering I would never see some of my housemates.  It’s sad, but I know that we’re all investing in good things - research, relationships, school, job searches, etc.  I do wish sometimes that we could live together for a week or two without the pressures and demands of school.  We have such fun together, but are often too busy to enjoy each other. 
This past weekend we were able to enjoy one another’s company a bit though.  On Saturday, instead of all going to libraries or coffee shops to do homework, most of us just stayed at home.  Granted, very little homework was accomplished, but we reveled in the sunshine, (relatively) warm weather, and friendship.  We baked muffins, talked, ate lunch outside on the deck, talked, cleaned the house together, talked, celebrated Moriah’s birthday, and talked.  It was excellent.  I have been so blessed to find such genuine and pleasurable friendships, and I will miss them next year when we’re scattered all over the country, Laura in Chicago, Patience in Boston, Jill in Minnesota, Liz in the southwest, me and Mo here in Grand Rapids, and the rest in places yet to be determined.  I think reunions will definitely be in order.

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 04/07 at 08:18 AM
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Thursday, March 12, 2009

Acquiring Gainful Employment

Most of the students with whom I will be graduating have a couple of goals, one of which is typically to “acquire gainful employment.”  At least that’s what a lot of resumes seem to be saying.  Perhaps this is more of a long-term goal for some, with some sort of post-undergrad schooling yet to complete, but for me and many others, it is a current short-term goal.  I will graduate in May with a Bachelors in Speech Pathology.  This will require me to eventually go on to graduate school to get my Masters if I want to practice Speech Pathology, but I am planning on taking a year off to regroup before doing that.  Besides, I haven’t had time to apply to graduate schools yet!  So I’ve joined the ranks of Americans seeking gainful employment.

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 03/12 at 03:41 PM
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Saturday, February 28, 2009

Increasing Opportunities

We are growing up and becoming adults.  It is more and more apparent to me every day.  Some things are simple: I do my own laundry, cook my own meals, clean my own house.  But some things are more subtle.  For instance, three of my housemates have recently had wonderful presentations of their abilities, which I have been privileged enough to attend. 

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 02/28 at 03:34 PM
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Saturday, February 07, 2009

Starting Again

The first week of the new semester has just ended, and as usual, I feel slightly overwhelmed by the amount of work required of me in the next 3 months or so, but also energized by the new class subjects and a fresh schedule.  This semester promises to afford me a bit more time at home and/or with friends.  Last semester I was taking 17 credits and working 25 hours/week, which left me very little time to do anything but work, attend class, do homework, and make three meals a day to take with me to school.  Now I will able to be home for supper three nights during the school week, and I’ve stripped my workweek down to 14 credits and 15 hours of work. 
I’m also taking some lower key classes.  I only have one 300 level class, one 200 level, and three 100 levels.  I have friends in most of my classes - my sister even in one class!  Basically, I’m excited and ready to take on a new challenge and to embrace my final semester at Calvin.

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 02/07 at 11:34 AM
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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My Apologies to the Political Science Department

Dear Political Science Department,
I apologize for being loud yesterday.  I did not realize the speakers would circumvent the headphones I had plugged into the computer.  In fact, it took me three hours to figure out that you were hearing the 8-year-old voices telling the story of “The Boy, The Dog, and The Frog” right along with me.  I am transcribing some children’s retelling of the story, and I am unused to the technological equipment I have been given, which results in embarrassing situations like the one I found myself in yesterday.  I honestly believed that when you came and closed the door to my office it was because I was typing too loudly.  It never occurred to me that the darling little voices I heard cheerfully repeating snippets of sentences at my command were not in fact coming to my ears through my headphones, but through the loudspeakers sitting next to my computer.  You must have thought me quite silly, wearing headphones while the voices came out of the two-foot tall speakers sitting on either side of me.  I did not mean to include you in my world of sentence fragments and high-pitched little voices.  I hope you at least enjoyed the lines about “the feisty little frog” and “I think [the dog’s] name is Wow-Wow.” 
My apologies,
Emily MacLeod

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 01/13 at 05:50 PM
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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Grand Rapids Model Rocket Society

I am not personally a member of the esteemed Grand Rapids Model Rocket Society, but I know quite a few such folks.  They are fun, creative, and always looking for a (legal) good time.  I got to go watch one of their rocket launches this fall - they have one every month, but I only made it to one this fall.  There were all sorts of rockets, home-made the night before the launch.  I hope to go make a rocket sometime and launch one of my own.  One of my favorites was made by my friend Brent.  He made his rocket 6 feet tall.  It was a bit too tall for the launch pad, actually, which fostered even more creativity among the Society as they tried to figure out how to launch such a rocket.  Eventually, with the aid of some supportive devices, the rocket was stabilized enough for a launch to take place.

The rocket shot up straight and true, and it’s self-contained parachute opened promptly at the rocket’s peak altitude.  It was so funny to watch a half dozen grown men (boys?) run haphazardly across the field, trying to determine exactly where it would fall so that they could catch it before it hit the ground.  I was surprised at how accurate their guesses turned out to be, because they caught that rocket in midair.  Here they are, triumphantly bringing it back.

Success!

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 12/27 at 11:48 AM
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Monday, December 22, 2008

Holla-Ween

At the beginning of the semester, my housemates and I decided we would have a themed party once a month.  At the time it sounded like fun, not overwhelmingly ambitious, which is what it turned out to be.  By the end of October, we had yet to have a party, so we decided to claim Halloween among our group of friends. 

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 12/22 at 04:49 PM
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Friday, December 19, 2008

End of the Semester

This past semester has been my busiest so far.  On top of working 25 hours a week and taking a full courseload, I was balancing friends, a boyfriend, and my recently relocated family.  I love having people I love nearby, but it is an added time constraint.  I am glad to see this semester end, although it does bring me closer to the ever-nearing end of college, which I am awaiting with equal parts dread and eagerness.  I have no immediate plans to continue with my education.  I will need to go to graduate school someday if I want to practice speech pathology, but for the next year at least, I plan to stay in Grand Rapids and find a job.  I want a little more time with my loved ones here, and if I can get close to paying off my school loans, that would be great!  Over Christmas break I hope to do a couple more blog posts looking back on the events of the past semester.  Many events got lost in the shuffle of my busy life.  I’d think to myself, “I have to blog about this!” and then it would be weeks later, I hadn’t blogged, and another blog-worthy happening would occur!  So I’m going to try to get things caught up here in the next week or so while I’m out of school and have a bit more time.

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 12/19 at 03:32 PM
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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Advent Conspiracy

Something to consider this holiday season:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVqqj1v-ZBU

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 11/20 at 06:34 PM
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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Standing in Line at the Polls

My dear readers, again I apologize for the long duration between my previous post and this one.  Time gets away from me.  To make it up to you I wrote three free verse poems in response to the two hours I spent waiting in line to cast my vote this morning.  Enjoy, and tell me which one is your favorite!

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 11/04 at 09:08 PM
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Wednesday, October 08, 2008

“Stroke of Genius”

Last week Thursday our stroke clinic was invited to join the participants and clinicians from Western Michigan University’s similar clinic for a special viewing of the film “Stroke of Genius.”  The film is a documentary about one stroke survivor’s battle back into society.  Dan was a hugely outgoing storytelling type who suffered an unexpected stroke in his home that left him in a coma for three weeks.  During that time the doctors urged his wife to end life support in fear that if he did wake up, he would be completely changed and uncommunicative.  When she finally gave in after 21 days, a miracle happened: he awoke.  Not only did he wake up, but he woke up speaking. 

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 10/08 at 07:08 PM
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Monday, September 29, 2008

A Beginning Clinician

I guess that since I now have a gold-colored plastic nametag that says “Emily MacLeod, Student Clinician,” that makes me one.  I have had two clinic sessions, one with each of my clients.  I have a clinic partner with whom I will be developing goals, strategies, and tasks, and a supervisor who will send us reflections on each clinical session, letting us know what strengths we exhibit and what weaknesses we can work on.

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 09/29 at 04:16 PM
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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Road trip!

I promised my Grandma MacLeod that I would update this blog tonight.  She’s right…it’s been too long.  I said I was going to write about my first clinical experience today, but that blog will have to wait.  I have another clinical evaluation on Thursday, so after that I’ll write about them both.  But just now when I got home there was an email waiting for me with photos from the road trip I went on this past weekend, and I’d rather show you those and tell you that story.  I mean, don’t you want to know what this:

is all about?

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Posted by Emily MacLeod on 09/23 at 08:36 PM
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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Flash Backs

This week has brought about a number of nostalgic memories for me as I’ve helped move my younger sister into her dorm at Calvin.  She’s just beginning her Calvin adventure, and I feel like I’m starting to wrap mine up.  I only have one year yet, and I’m almost jealous of her that she has four years at Calvin ahead of her.  All the freshmen are going through orientation right now, making new friends and new memories that I know will be precious to them for years to come.  I currently live with two girls who were in my orientation group, and we regularly see another girl from that group.  I’ve been blessed by the friendships I made at Calvin and I am excited to continue to develop them this final year at Calvin. 

Posted by Emily MacLeod on 09/04 at 09:09 PM
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