Sunday, June 22

Being Quiet

I'm a mumbler. (Yes, Sister Jones, you brought this to my attention multiple times.)

Well, not totally a mumbler.

But I am quiet. Like...

There are many Beths in the world, shy and quiet, sitting in corners till needed, and living for others so cheerfully that no one sees the sacrifices till the little cricket on the hearth stops chirping, and the sweet, sunshiny presence vanishes, leaving silence and shadow behind.

Not to say I live for others so cheerfully as Beth from Little Women. But when I was little I found this quote and decided that I wanted to be like this. To be quiet and helpful and not to draw attention to myself. I don't know if this weird connection has anything to do with how quiet I am now, but it's all I can think of.

The problems with being quiet include having to repeat yourself multiple times, being reminded by your mission president remind you every time you meet with him that you must pray loudly enough for him to hear, and not being recorded properly when you are in movies.

There are others. ;)

Are any of you quiet? Or are any of you loud and would like to tell about the problems with being loud? Life is ridiculously difficult.

I'm just plugging along with school. Now that I want to go to graduate school, I need to take the dreaded GRE. According to Ian, successful GRE-takers study for 5 hours or so every day leading up to their test (and, yes, this is his goal.) The idea of studying ANYTHING for 5 hours a day makes me gag, and I guess I might not but up for grad school at all if that's the case. ;) So I'm going to give it 1-2 hours a day depending on my mood and see how far that gets me.

Wednesday, June 18

Grad School Woes

Aw shucks, I didn't get this done in time for Wednesday. I can be flexible, though. ;)


Ian is a scholarly fellow. He is excited to get his PhD and be a professor. This summer is he preparing to take the GRE and then to apply to grad schools in the fall. He's narrowed down his choices, including the following:

UNC-Chapel Hill
John Hopkins

This list terrifies me for a few reasons. One, if we indeed get married next summer, his acceptance to one of these colleges will determine where I go to live, what kind of living conditions we'll be in, etc. As we discuss these potential outcomes, Ian keeps prodding me to apply to graduate school myself.

Now, I'm all for grad school. I really want to get a PhD myself and do research with students. It's sort of a new dream of mine. But even as he kept suggesting I apply, I felt myself getting very defensive and resentful of the whole idea.


I dunno.

Maybe it's the fact that no matter where I get accepted (or even IF I get accepted), I want to put his needs and acceptance first. So it feels like a waste.

Maybe it's the fact that I am terrified of the GRE and the monstrous load of molecular, microbiology, genetics, and chem I need to take in the next year to be barely qualified.

Maybe I'm afraid of failing.

Maybe I'm afraid of starting a program and then having to stop halfway through because of starting a family or needing to have a job, or whatever.

There are so many unknowns.

I started looking at other options. Just waiting until I knew for sure where he was going. Trying to apply next year instead. Or maybe going in a completely different direction. Teaching science in high school or working in a pathology department for a landscaping division.

I feel really lost. All I know is that I really love what I'm doing now. The research I get to do each week is really fulfilling! I've never felt this way about any job or any activity I've been involved in. I want to keep doing it. I'm excited for each new prospective project.

Should I take the plunge?

Sunday, June 15

A New Beginning

I've decided that since my mission my journal-keeping skills have fallen into disrepair. Example of the past year:

July 20
July 21
July 22
July 23
Aug 17
Aug 18
Aug 26
Sept 30
Oct 22
Dec 25
Jan 4
Feb 3

etc.  Embarrassing, right?

And they will contain things like (warning, actual content ahead:)

"Full speed ahead with work and helping Moroni with his costume.  Boring life."

"Oh yeah, I am dating Ian Peacock.  That happened... what, 2 months ago?  Sorry!"

"Oh dear.  Blaaah.  It's been too long."

"What a sad, sorry person I am."

"Shame, Beth, shame.  Funny how a lack of routine eliminates one's capacity to journal."

"I plead only 4 hours of sleep."

"Boo.  I was doing so good."

"Alright, catch up time!"

"Augh, no good!  I'm horrible."

"Okay, to fill in some gaps..."

Now that I read back through, my journal is a mess of apologies and brief summaries of my life. No good! I've always had trouble with journals because I don't like reporting on routine things, and I really dislike reading what I've written. It seems so boring and repetitive.

So I've decided to quit. No more daily reports. No more guilty feelings. I am, however, concerned for my posterity so I've additionally decided to set a new goal. Rather than writing in my journal every night (or, as it ends up, 3 consecutive times a month), I'm going to blog twice a week.  Sunday and Wednesday. Think I can do it?

I'm also trying to only put one space in between my sentences. I hope you noticed. I am conforming.

Well, thoughts? Anyone have trouble with journals? Or do you absolutely love them? I want to hear. :)

Here are some bug eye photos.


I can't get over how creepy Libby looks in this one.

Libbers, daddy, and Teag.  Beautiful.

Luke (Ian's bro) pulls it off like no one else.