Friday, December 3, 2010


So December is here already... and I feel like I should get into the festive spirit...but that's hard to do when you have no source of income.

Let's face it, this holiday is ALL ABOUT SPENDING MONEY. How do you celebrate it without spending money? I mean, I'm trying, but some spending is inevitable. I am making most Christmas presents this year and maybe even some home decorations, but we didn't really decorate for Christmas last we have nothing. The fact that we want to get a tree this year means we need all sorts of paraphernalia for that. At least we have stockings. At least.

So what have I been doing with myself since NaNoWriMo finished and I have been out of work? Well, I usually make at least one visit to where CJ, Ariana and everyone else I know works. Yeah, I'm that obnoxious person who drives down productivity. My bad. I have also knit one scarf, studies for the GREs, applied for several jobs, continued the process of applying to grad school by asking old professors to write recommendations (got one yes, another I know is a yes), started working on my group gifts and watched copious amounts of TV on my computer. Yep, it's been a productive week.

Today, I have an interview at Panera. I am excited simply because this is the first interview I've gotten and it gives me hope that I won't be jobless for too much longer. On the other hand, I can't help but feel that it's ridiculous to get excited about a job interview at Panera. I mean, I like their food and all, but it is in the food service industry. Like, seriously? I have a freaking degree! Come on, I have to be able to do better than food service! And I am, going to the interview.

What choice do I have? No one else has called for an interview yet. The problem is that I really enjoy working outdoors. I've done it several times now, and while it's exhausting, it's far less likely to bore me. The problem is that this is not the season for outdoor work. What else do I have the experience for? Retail. Ugh.

It doesn't help that all, ALL of my friends have decent jobs now. None of them are in retail. They all make $12+ an hour in potential career jobs. Most of them don't even have degrees. So by comparison, I feel pretty damn lame. I know that I can't hold myself to others as comparison, but I always have....and until now I've felt pretty ok with it all.

Time to get back to studying for the GREs so that I can go to grad school and get a Masters degree and then get a REAL job! Woo!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

NaNoWriMo Completed!

I did it! I wrote 50,000 words in 30 days! Actually, I wrote a whole lot more than 50,000 words during the month considering how much crap I post on facebook and the like...but I wrote a novel that is just barely over 50,000 words. So now I am an author. Not a published one, but who cares? I did it! Considering that just three days ago, I still had 12,00o words to write, I am pretty damn impressed with myself. I mean, I wrote about 7000 words today...and all before 2:15pm.

It helps that I no longer have a job. Yes, I am currently unemployed and have been for a whole week, as of tomorrow. What am I doing with myself? Well...spending entirely too much money and having a great time.

The last part of the season on the boat was pretty rough, so I am glad to be taking some time off....though, unless I find the perfect job, I will probably be going back to work on the boat next season. I mean, it's about as close to perfect as I can get right now.

So now that NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, come on, keep up with me here) is over, I've got the GRE's to study for and Christmas presents to make. I am in the process of applying for Graduate School at the University of Maryland and hoping to enroll this fall in their Marine Estuarine Environmental Science program. It sounds like a great program and I think that it's exactly what I need. Plus, it involved research in the Chesapeake Bay, which is one of the reasons I let myself be convinced to move here. As an environmental/marine scientist with an interest in ecology, the interaction of mankind and the largest estuary in North America holds great interest for me. So I might as well study it while I'm here.

Anyway, work is over and I am enjoying my leisure time...which I am going to get back to because I am more than a little burned out on writing at the moment...

Time to start a knitting project and watch some tv on my computer! Woo Firefly!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


And so November begins. Here, I should be writing my novel, but instead, I am updating you. That's love. Or maybe narcissism, to think that you actually care. Either way, here I am!

I am participating in NaNoWriMo this year. For those of you not in the know, it stands for National Novel Writing Month. Yes, that's right, I'm writing a novel. 50,000 words must be written in the month of November, in order to be a successful NaNoWriMo-er.

I am excited, as I have already written just over 4000 words in two whole days. Granted, I've been off work during the entirety of NaNoWriMo thus far, so maybe I'm a little too optimistic.

I think my major failing will be finding the subject matter for 50,000 words. I've got a story, with characters and plot and a general idea of where I want them to end up...but can I make it 50,000 words long? That's the million dollar question. What is the longest I have ever written?? Around 20 pages, and that was a research paper, that took a whole lot longer than a single month to write. But fiction is far easier to write about than the atom bomb, so whatever.

On Sunday, Ariana, CJ, Mike, Chris and I went out for our pretentious author photo session. We got some gems, all of which are viewable on Facebook. The photo here, is the one I have chosen. For now.

Anyway, don't expect much from me this month, unless I am really struggling with my novel and feel the need to get my word on with blogspot instead. I hope that doesn't happen...

Wish me luck!

Thursday, October 7, 2010


My days at Living Classrooms are coming to a close and all I can think about is how nice it will be to have a break.

Basically, since I have been promoted, I have been doing all the extra stuff that goes along with my new position, as well as all the stuff that went along with my old position. This is because, when you spend all day on a boat, teaching kids, your primary concern for the new hires, is getting comfortable with the sailing and the teaching. There's all kinds of other stuff that goes on behind the scenes, and I have been the only one taking care of all that for over a month now. It's frustrating because the first person to take my old position quit unexpectedly and now we are training someone new, so I continue to do all the behind the scenes work. Let's just say, I'm over it.

On Tuesday, some kid decided to smash the passenger side window of my car. Nothing was stolen, thankfully, but trying to get it fixed has turned into a nightmare. I haven't had any free time to deal with it, and the people I had scheduled to come fix it today, didn't show up on time, so no one was actually here when they did finally show up. I'm sorry, but I have a job and so does my fiance. We don't get time off to deal with this crap. Show up on time, if you want to get paid.

So now I have to wait until Saturday to get the window fixed, because all the auto glass places are only open 8-5 weekdays, which, HEY, big surprise, is when I work. I will also be paying more, because it turns out, the jerks who can't show up on time, are also the cheapest. And I won't be using THEIR services, since it's clear they don't want my money.

It would be nice if I had the kind of job where I could take a day off to deal with personal stuff, like getting this window fixed and figuring out what the heck I am going to do about parking now, since I will no longer park on Eden Street. Some kid in a blue sweatshirt, is riding around on his bike, waiting to smash more of my windows there. When I filed the police report, a man who worked across the street came over to tell me that he saw the kid and called the police and they didn't do anything about it. The police officer, who was quite kind to me, wasn't too pleased about this guy, but whatever.

It's clear the Baltimore City police department have bigger fish to fry than some kid who smashes windows. I mean, with one of the highest murder rates in the country, window smashing isn't a top priority. But it sucks that this guy works in the neighborhood, tries to do the right thing and calls the police, and gets the brush off. Apparently this kid smashes windows on a regular basis.

I'm almost tempted to spend one of my coveted days off, having a stake-out and waiting for the little bastard. I'd beat the crap out of him and steal his bike and sell it to pay for my window.

But it's also possible, that I'd get knifed and the Baltimore City murder rate would increase and I'd be one of the few 'white' murders in the city. But you know, thoughts of revenge at least make me feel better...

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Oregon Trip

The leftovers from an art project that occurred at Rachael's bachelorette party. Our Oregon trip was crazy and fun, but I wish I could have spent more time there. I miss everyone, though few people that I care about are left in Corvallis. It's sad to have moved on....though I expect to move back to Oregon in a few years. Maybe Newport, maybe Portland, I'm not really sure. I suppose it's wherever I can find work.

The last few weeks have been pretty crazy. I got promoted at work because Tanja quit to go work for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. It was an awesome opportunity for her, and I got a raise, so I had no problem with her leaving. The girl who replaced her just quit and now we've got another person we're training, so it's been a little stressful. I'm sure me taking a week off to spend in Oregon wasn't super awesome for my co-workers, but I had that trip planned months before all the new staff problems went down, so oh well.

Going to Oregon really made me want to get my shit together. Being bored makes me far less unproductive than when I am crazy busy. That's why I stayed so busy in high school and college. It meant I got stuff done. Now that I have too much free time, I hardly do anything, other than work. Sometimes I forget to pay bills, I'm not making any art, etc. It's super lame and it needs to change.

Now that the weather has started cooling off, it's time to work out more. It's not so hot that I can't stand being outside when I don't have to be. So I am trying to make a commitment to working out more, therefore hopefully spending some of that free time that I have. The girls of my group, including myself, have expressed an interest in taking a belly dancing class. I am hoping that we can start that sometime after Fest is over. I do love Fest. The Maryland Renaissance Festival is basically a chance for me to be social. Since I've stopped playing D & D with the group, I hardly ever see everyone all together. Fest changes all of that. I see them all weekend and I LOVE it! I miss big social groups. I think that's the hardest part of not being in college anymore.

I am starting to get anxious about going back to school. I talked to Ben about getting my foot in the door for the MEES program through the University of Maryland system. It's Marine Estuarine Environmental Science and it's an interdisciplinary program for graduate studies. I'm excited about it, but the first couple steps are getting in touch with faculty who work in the program and taking my GRE's. I have started studying again and I hoping to take the test around the 29th of November.

The 29th of November will also find my unemployed, unless I find something interesting and start there right after my job at Living Classrooms ends. We'll see how that goes. sum up: I am trying to work out more, going to start taking belly dancing again, try to find another job, take the GRE's and start working on getting in to grad school.

Whew. It's kind of exhausting just to think about it all.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

External Harddrive failure.

Yes, it's true. Ariana and I set up a date for our hard drives to meet....and now they won't work anymore. Apparently they didn't get along very well...or maybe they got along too well and they spread some external diseases. I'm not really sure. Now I get to call the manufacturer and see what I can do about it.

In other news, I am getting ready to leave on my 9 day CTY trip. Basically, CTY stands for Center for Talented Youth. It's a summer program for middle and high school students who have amazing test scores, to go out and do some really cool stuff during their summer. Basically, these kids have been described as the ones who "you have to take the textbooks away from them at night so the actually go to sleep and stop studying". They are the type of kids who "talk about genetics at lunchtime, when they're not in class". I have been warned that there will be nerd-offs to determine the dominate nerd. I AM SO EXCITED!

This trip actually starts on my 25th birthday (sad day!) and goes for 9 days. Basically, I'll be out of town for a long time. I will have my phone on me, so I won't be completely MIA, but I will only be able to use it at certain times, so my accessibility will decrease greatly. It's going to be hard for me, being the iPhone-using, ever-connected person that I am. I will make it through though, with the help of 12 nerdy kids, some awesome co-workers and some yummy blue crabs which I will catch and eat.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Europe Memories!

Pamplona 01
Originally uploaded by kristen.lycett
So I bought an external hard drive around Christmas time and I finally, FINALLY took it over to Ariana's to get a bunch of stuff from her. This included tv shows, but more importantly, pictures.

I finally got my act together and had some of my Europe photos printed for the purpose of scrapbooking. After getting them printed, I realized there were certain parts of the trips that I did not have photos of. This is where Ariana comes in. Her camera was waterproof and drop-proof, while mine was not. So she has pictures from parts of the trip that I do not. Plus, she's a bit photo-happy. And she knows it. Hey, it's a good thing when it comes to keeping memories alive!

So, I got her Europe photos, and I was going through them, looking to fill in the gaps of my own photos, for scrapbooking. Checking out the photos though, I had such fond memories resurface.

Seriously, that trip made me grow so much as a person. For those 6 weeks, I was homeless, a drifter and a traveler. It was awesome and terrifying and completely bohemian. As hard as it was to be so disconnected from everything I was comfortable with, it was a fabulous trip that I will never forget. What's funny though, is that I spent a lot of time communicating with people back home. But I don't regret any of that time, or think that it was wasted. Keeping in touch with the people I love is important to me, even if it cuts in to sightseeing time.

Looking back at these pictures makes me what to travel again. I feel like I have more things holding me back now though, what with being engaged and all. I'm sure I could bring CJ with me, but traveling with Ariana was fun. It was nice to reconnect with her so much, after living on opposite sides of the country for so long....even if we did drive each other crazy after awhile.

Anywho, I thought I would share a picture with you all, so that you too could share in the memories. This is a photo of Ariana and I in Pamplona for the final night of the Running of the Bulls. We are busy getting trashed on sangria, which Ariana still refuses to drink, even after almost 2 years.