Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Every once in a while a thought crosses my head saying, "what would it be like if I just dropped out?" Sometimes it sticks on, "and run away". Today, the thought didn't have the ending. Now don't worry, I am not going to drop out of school any more than I am going to drive off a cliff when I wonder what it would be like to do that. But these thoughts are there. We all have such thoughts from time to time.

But these thoughts still make me stop and wonder. Is there something wrong with the flow of my life? Is it good to just look at everything that you have to do and sit there like a 6-year-old screaming, "But I don't wanna!!!!" Granted my version is a bit more pg-13 rated today. Can I just blame that on hormones? I'd like to think so.

But there is a serious thought wading in the back of my mind. Not about dropping out, but about living. I spend hours every day on productivity. Searching for that best system. Always trying something new. See what works an what does not. When am I productive and when am I not. Despite that, I still haven't implemented any version of GTD. And the list does nothing but build.

I think there is a lot of anger in me. Granted, again, it may just be hormones. What else could I be mad at? but there are moments when I just break down and snap at people. Or fight the world. I usually regret it. Like that time that I snapped at Hank when Hank wasn't really the person I was mad at, but I couldn't snap at them and they were making me even more angry just by being there. Hank was the next person to interact and I just let him have it. After that I just broke down completely, apologizing profusely.

I had a study abroad appointment yesterday. I went in and asked for the easiest program they had. The lady just stared at me. That isn't the attitude she was looking for, but it is my attitude. I no longer want to push myself in school. I no long want to go to grad school. I may go back. But not right now. I have 4 really easy semesters in front of me. I say easy because I am going to make them easy. All I need is 3 classes a semester, plus one elective. That makes 12 hours, which is what I need to be full time. No longer am I going to be taking 15 hours. No longer am I even going to try to. I just want to do my work and learn my programming and be joyful.

To be honest, Swing is falling lower and lower on my enjoying list. I enjoy helping with the ScSwing dance (I feel needed), and I enjoy doing outreach like Ryan and I did at that middle school. And I hope that I will enjoy teaching intermediate swing next semester, but beyond that, I haven't been enjoying it. Granted, there are always fun moments. Moments when I do things grand and I know it. But for every one of those, there are 2 painful ones; 2 flubs, trips, bad thoughts. And add that with all the crappy social issues the compound on top of all the good social issues and It leaves me feeling drained and upset. I won't me able to take it much longer. Sorry everyone. I won't even be coming to the Monday lessons at taft next semester, sadly, unless of course I am needed to fill in. Although that just has to do with bad scheduling (a class) more then distaste. That is the only place I truly feel comfortable dancing at. That is, as long as none of the students ask me questions.

As I sit here writing this, I have a lot to do, and absolutely no will to do any of it. All I really want to do is curl in a ball and go to sleep.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

iWrite 2007

I found this wonderfully interesting event on Facebook. Since a lot of you don't have facebook accounts, here is the description given:

On January 3rd 2007, I will be arriving to a local 24 hours restaurant. At 5pm I will begin writing, and continue writing for 72 hours with the goal of creating "200" pages of a one-of-a-kind, individual, irreplaceable work, before 5pm of January 6th 2007. This is not just something for writers, but for anyone who has any emotions, ideas, or concerns for themselves, their friends, or their family. It is what ever you can write about, no one will grade it, criticize it, or even look at it if you don't want them to, no matter what you write you can prove to yourself that you have done something unbelievable and have something to show for it. This is an opportunity to push your body, mentally, physically, and find out how far your imagination will run when you let it. Wherever you are, I recommend you, I insist you, I suggest you, I advise you, I urge you, I direct you, I beg you, To be a part of something never before done. Invite as many people as you can, these friends are your muses, the more people, the more ideas floating, the more influence, the more connected the world can be. I will be trying to video tape the entire experience in my area. What will you do? Are you up to it? Do you have what it takes?
This idea intrigues me. Although, I really don't think that i'd like to do this in a 24-hour cafe (too many distractions), I will be partaking in my own version over the christmas break. I will pick 3 days and write 200 pages within those 3 days. It will be extra hard to stay focused because i will have my mother there to try to get me to do chores (joys of going home of the holidays, right?), but I can do it.

There is some stuff that I have been meaning to write about lately, and this will give me the opportunity to do that.

So, will you join iWrite 2007? Pick 3 days and over those 3 days try to write 200 pages. It doesn't matter what is on those 200 pages. They won't be graded. They won't even be read by others if you don't want them to be. Freewrite to your heart's content. I plan to post some highlights here in my blog.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

Low Price Electronics

This is a cool way to search for things on Amazon that are really Marked Down. The link to search for Electronics that are 85% off is

(via Life Hack)

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Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Finding Your Calling

A man who becomes conscious of the responsibility he bears toward a human being who affectionately waits for him, or to an unfinished work, will never be able to throw away his life. He knows the "why" for his existence, and will be able to bear almost any "how." - Victor Frankl

I just got out of a presentation about Acton MBA. Acton is an entrepreneurship MBA program in Austin that is very different from other MBA programs. For one thing, it is just a year, which means they work you like crazy for that year. An Acton student works more then 100 hours per week on Acton work. (To compare, I am at Rice and I work about 20 - 25 hours a week on school, 10 in the class and about 10 - 15 on homework and studies.) You are not allowed to miss class, and class starts at 6 AM every day of the week. But they are good at what they do: teaching people to run businesses and find their calling.

An idea from the Acton presentation is that there are three things that you can do in your life:
  1. Get a Job - A job is something that you do to get money in order to go do what you want to do. It is sad that so many people spend their whole lives in jobs always watching the clock for time to go out and actually live their lives. A job is summarize in a song that I love to hate, Get Drunk and Be Somebody by Toby Keith:
    Well all week long I'm a real nobody, But I just punched out and its paycheck Friday, Weekends here, good God almighty, I'm going to get drunk and be somebody.
  2. Get a Career - It's a tiny bit better then a job. At least you are working towards something, right? Well, if you are climbing that ladder, working towards that big house and corner office, struggling up and up that Caterpillar pile, will you be happy when you get there? When is there? Jeff mentioned that a lot of the people who get to the top just want to go higher. And the people who almost make it, but can't quite get there usually get fired and have to go back to the bottom again. Now, who wants a career?
  3. Lastly, you can find a calling. And this is the Acton way.

The "Find Your Calling" thing intrigued me. Someone asked the presenter, who was Jeff Sandefer, one of the founders of Acton, about how someone would go about doing this. He gave a easy sounding 3 step process:
  1. Find what you are good at. - Ask everyone you know what they think that you are good at. You will have to probe, because people like to give superficial answers to this question, but if you probe enough people, you will begin to see a trend. And you will be surprised because it will probably be something that you find so easy that you think there must be plenty of other people that are good at it.
  2. Find what you love doing. - For this, he brought up the concept of flow. Think about things that you have done in the past year that you have completely lost track of time while doing. Things that you love doing just for the sake of doing. Doing those activities should bring you so much joy that it is no longer about competing with others or any other outside motivator that matters.
  3. Find a way that you can impact the world. - How can you take what you are good at and love doing and do something with them that impacts the world.
One of the projects that they make Acton students do is go out and interview 9 people, 3 from each age group 20-45, 45-60, beyond 60. He said that students find that people that are older then 60 will look back on their lives and say that only 2 things really matter:
  • Did I live a good and ethical life?
  • Did I impact the world in a meaningful way?
I had heard this before, but it really hits home, especially compared with my own personal philosophy about life. I must make a meaningful impact. I, as I always am, will be working towards answering these questions. That is really what life is all about. As the Dalai Lama puts it:
What is the meaning of life? To be happy and useful.


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Productivity and a low-tech To-Do List

The guys over at LifeHack posted a really good article about Granularity for Students which got me thinking about past ways that I have kept a To-Do list. When I was in High school, my task list was kept in a little spiral bound notebook much like this one except fatter: The system was simple. When I got a new task, say, to take LifeHack's example, writing a research paper, I would draw a line under my previous tasks (this was the signal that a new task was being written) and I would write down every little step that I had to complete that task. For our example, I would write:

  • pre-write on topic
  • narrow down topic using topic tree
  • write a preliminary thesis statement from topic (although, I'd prob actually write "prelim thesis")
  • do library catalog search
  • go to library and search those book's index for my topic
  • read what I found
  • Make a prelim outline with pg #s
  • gather quotes for each part of outline
  • write a rough draft of each part of the outline.
  • Reread each section for clarity.
  • Combine and work on transitions.
  • Sleep (I'll explain this one below)
  • read paper for clarity.
  • proofread for agreement
  • proofread for voice
  • proofread for punctuation errors.
  • Have friend read paper.
  • make final corrections
There are some steps that are vague because of lack of information. I can't very well write down that I need to read specific books sections when I don't yet have my topic. When I do get this information, I'd cross off the vague entry with a sort of zigzag line like /\/\/\/\/\ (straight meant completed, zigzag meant moved), go to the bottom of the whole list, draw a line and list out the detailed info.
Note about "Sleep":
I believe that it is a whole lot easier to proofread a paper, if you haven't seen the paper for 24 hours. I call this my sleep on it period.
This system led itself to easy daily use. In the morning (or the night before), I'd decide what I'd get done that day and I'd highlight those things. I'd work through the highlighted items through out the day and I'd cross them off as I completed them. At the end of the day, I'd look at highlighted items that I didn't complete and I'd make one of two decisions:
  1. Do them tomorrow - I'd just leave them highlighted.
  2. Postpone them for a later time (not tomorrow)- I'd zigzag cross them out and move them, unhighlighted, to the end of the list.
  3. Decide not to do them ever - just cross them off.
I'd also review the whole list every couple of days for stragglers that are left on old pages that had almost all tasks completed. I'd either decide not to do them, or move them to the end of the list. The pages that had only completed items got paper clipped together so they would be easy to bypass. The review process was much like the GTD review process.

All in all it was a great system and the only reason that I stopped using it is because I bought my first Mac and decided to try iCal and it's To-do list. But now that I am not taking my computer around so much, I may switch back to that old system. Good ol' Pen and Paper (and highlighter). Plus, there is probably a way to do something like this electronically too. :-D

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Kitlers - Cats that look like Hitler

This added a smile to my face:

Kitlers - Cats the Look like Hitler.

This is a whole website dedicated to cats that look like Hitler. You can post pictures of your Kitler and go through the posted ones and rate them. This cat is named Claude and is rated as the #2 most Hitler-like.

I just had to share this little smile bringer.

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What do I actually have to offer?

So, this weekend I joined, the social bookmarking site (add me if you would like ;-) ). I also posted my link feed in this blog (if you are reading this on my blogspot blog, look to the right --> ). This also got me motivated to get my google reader shared page feed on here as well. Doesn't those two additions make my blog look nice? I feel like a real blogger.

Anywho, this got me thinking about blogging in general. I like having a blog and having people read my blog, but I really don't have that much content to offer readers beyond my close friends. The rest of the world probably doesn't want to hear me rant about my problems. I do post some useful things (click the "useful" tag to the right --> ). But most of those things actually are not that unique in content.

They say post about things you like. Well that would make for a very varied tag list. I like such things as swing dancing, blogging, web design, life hacking, and a wide variety of other stuff. I also like collecting cool quotes and inspirational stuff (like my last note). But I am not an expert at any of that. I am a junior in college majoring in religion and cognitive science, so I could write about some of what I am learning, but who really wants to hear about Disjunctive Syllogisms and other random academic things (if I am wrong, please let me know).

I like non-profits and am working with a non-profit, but I don't really think I'd enjoy posting about things like that all of the time. Plus a lot of that info will be posted in the Marion's Ledge blog anyway.

I'd love to write about lifehacking ideas, but I am not really sure what I can personally offer beyond with 43 folders, LifeHacker, LifeHack, and LifeClever are offering. I'd also love to offer something like Life2.0, but I'd have to improve my writing ability. In the end, that is probably the best example of what I am looking to do.

Truthfully, the best thing that I have to offer is my worldview. I believe in a very optimistic, magical (in the happy sense and not the abracadabra sense), and wonderful world that we are all a connected part of. I believe that we are all on a creative creation of our lives, not stuck in something we can't control. I believe that it is okay to be sad as long as you never let yourself be unhappy. It's all alright.

I can get down and flustered at times, but in the end, as I am learning, it is all going to be okay. If I share my journey in this, maybe I can have something of value to give. As long as people don't mind an occational computer or dance post. Heck, that is part of me. That is part of my worldview.

Let the journey begin...

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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Learners, Doers, Teachers

Here is a short an sweet thought provoker that I picked up over at Life2.0:

"Why, for example, should a group of simple, stable compounds of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen struggle for billions of years to organise themselves into a professor of chemistry? What's the motive?"
- originally from a Robert Pirsig article.

As well as one of my favorite poems of all times from the book Illusions by Richard Bach:

Learning is finding out what you already know.
Doing is demonstrating that you know it.
Teaching is reminding others that they know just as well as you.
You are all learners, doers, teachers.

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Sunday, November 26, 2006

The Aggies Beat UT. OH DISASTER!! ;-)

Disclaimer: If you are a UT football fan and will be upset if I say bad things about your beloved sport. Please don't read this entry.


I was in Austin this weekend, which happened to be the same weekend as the UT vs. A&M football game. Just in case you didn't see it, A&M won. UT lost.

I don't watch football, so I didn't actually see this game. But I did watch the news that night. The news in Austin had this football game as their top story. Top of the Hour. Not in the sports time. And what was the air of this broadcast? Disaster!! The news stations and people being interviewed were treating this as if it is the end of the world. Earth to people!!! It's a football game. It is a game!!! A GAME!!!! It is not the end of the world! The earth will keep rotating. There is next year. This is nothing to cry about. (ok, if you are one of the players, then maybe... but the fans?)

Football fans... How exactly does this impact you? Did you bet a huge sum of money on the game? No? Well then, stop crying. Period. It is just a game.

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Monday, November 20, 2006

Thoughts on the break

So I just realized that I have 3 weeks until this semester is over. That is not that far away. This got me thinking about this break and some of the things that I want to do over the break. So I decided that I was going to create a list of a whole bunch of stuff that i want to get done.

  • Clean my apartment. And by this, I mean totally clean. It is so messy right now I don't really like it that much. I need to get rid of a whole bunch of stuff. I also need to set up a system so that it does not get messy again. This system needs to include a cloths rack and a papers bin. I have been toying with the idea of getting a bunk bed, which will clear up some room and will make my bed harder to get to.
  • Finish my new website design. I am really loving this idea that I have and I can't wait to share it with you. But this will take some time and effort to do.
  • Write my new years resolutions. I normally hate these, but I am going to do it a tad bit differently this year.
  • Write letters to a bunch of people. I have a bunch of these to write (see earlier post).
  • Get my computer organized. Actually, this should not take too much trouble, my system from summer is still pretty strong. But I do need to organize my mail and update my address book.
  • Work on Marion's Ledge stuff. This one is a given, but there is a bunch that I have been wanting to do but have been putting off because of school.
Ok, there is my list for now. I am sure that I will be adding some things to it.

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School Work Slump

I am at that point in the semester that i just want to cut my losses and slack. I have complete and uder faith in my ability to pass tests. That is something I am pretty good at. But I do need to study, and I really don't want to. But i am almost done.

I am getting over being sick. And that means that I still don't feel very well. I am thinking about just not going to school this week at all. ok, I am going to go today to a meeting and then to a tutorial. And I really need to force myself to go to Accounting tomorrow, but beyond that. I don't want to.

I have a test that i must do at some point soon. I have an extention on it, but don't quite understand the info. :-/ That is what this tutorial is about today. I really must make that.

But the end is near:

I have 2 more problem sets and then a final exam.
2 more tests. One of which is to be done ASAP, the other done like 2 weeks after thanksgiving.
The Final Test and the paper. As well as a bunch of problem sets (7).
Leadership Rice
Finish the Coffeehouse project and maybe put a powerpoint together for our presentations.
I have two more books to read. I better get reading. Plus a paper.

In conclusion:
Problem Sets: 9 official ones plus some ungraded logic ones.
Papers: 2
Exams: 4
Projects: 1

Actually, that doesn't sound that bad. I should try to do as much as I can over the break. Although I don't really want to do anything over the break.

I have an idea for a really cool website that is just making me go crazy wanting to work on it. My goal is to have it done and up by christmas. It is gonna be cool. :-)

I really need to get feeling better and start wanting to work again. This is crazy. Although I am really enjoying the taking it easy part. :-D

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Friday, November 17, 2006

Facing myself

I sometime don't like talking to people. No, not in the normal nice social sense, but in the "I have something hard to ask you or tell you" sense. I have never been very good at it. I have an idea as to why I am this way, but I wish I weren't this way. I can't say anything hard to anyone. I have managed it a couple times this year, but only to one person and after they pinned me down and let me cry for an hour until I finally spit it out. These things are really bothering me and I will feel better if I talk about them, but I am afraid to. What if things don't go as well as I would hope? What if the conversation changes things between us? So I just hold it all in.

I recently had an idea that may help with this. I am going to write a letter to everyone in my life that I have something hard to say to. There will be a bunch of letters. Ironically, the longest letters will be to the people in my life that I am closest to. I probably won't get around to this till around christmas, but if you are close to me, be on the lookout for a letter of complete honesty. And if these letters change things, well, I can only hope for the better.

And I may write some completely positive ones too.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Zune and Header

So, Have you heard of the newest laughing matter that just proves that Microsoft is an idiot? Yeah, that thing is Zune, their version of the ipod. The greatest thing that I have heard about it from a non-microsoft source is that is has potential.

Some of the Top reasons why Zune is funny:

  • You can't play any music on it bought from iTunes or any other legal digital music store. You can only play music from the Zune music store and music ripped off of CDs. So if you are a big digital music buyer, you will have to start your collection over.
  • It has the capability to play movies... but they are not selling movies to play on it. And you can't watch iTunes movies on it.
  • It's quite big. Although I guess so were the original iPods.
  • You can share music... but only for 3 plays or 3 days. Then you have to buy the song from the zune store.
  • And the funniest reason of all: It is incompatable with Vista, Microsofts newest operating system... um, they are working on that. (Tee HEE)
Anywho, We shall see what happens, but they have a long way to go in order to compete with iPod.
--- --- --- ---
In other news, I created this in Photoshop:

Cool isn't it?

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Friday, November 10, 2006

Egos are King

I got this story sent to be through an Ishmael readers Listserv. Thought I'd share:

The following conversation was overheard by an Abductee while on an Unrevealed Airborne Entity – a UAE, hovering over a large metropolitan area on a planet named Earth, in a solar system in a spiral galaxy, the Milky Way. From the conversation it was later deduced that the aliens were from the star system Xenon, it was their first visit to the planet Earth, and their first abduction.

The Advanced beings named Adamus and Evon were apparently speculating on what they observed, which was a rush hour over a city on the planet, and traffic conditions that were transpiring.

Evon – I see creatures whose exterior appears to be an exoskeleton (automobiles), moving in an orderly fashion on what seems to be path ways. There are thousands of them – they are moving in packs and waves that are synchronized in some manner.

Adamus – The exoskeletons are all different, brightly colored, various sizes, some conformity in shape, but still different. I wonder what it means.

Evon –I’m sure the exoskeletons are necessary; the internal beings seem to use them for moving longer distances only, and then shed them when they remain stationary, or move for short distances - how strange.

Adamus – Remember when we visited the star system Habitatus Inferior? The ego was regarded as the most important aspects of the psyche of those beings, and the beings there were given status based on their outward appearance.

Evon – Excitedly - I believe you’re right! An also on Habitatus Inferior, the larger, more brightly colored, and fancily bedecked were given a higher status in their society. We are seeing a similar situation here. Ego is king, and the exoskeletons (cars) are the outwardly manifestation of the ego. A large brightly colored exoskeleton would, under your theory, place the whole individual ensemble higher in the social order of this planetary system.

Adamus - Especially moving on those pathways, larger and more prominent vehicle beings (SUVs) would certainly have an advantage over lessor bedecked inhabitants. Earth is a truly amazing planet!

Written by a transplant from the star system “Xenon”

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Thursday, November 02, 2006

For the Love of Money

So... I have an accounting test tomorrow, so I have been spending the whole week learning about money. Currently, the business world baffels me. People work long hours just to make a little bit more money. Do you really need that 4 bedroom house for just one or two people. I guess you do if you have kids, but still.

Anywho, I like the idea of making money without working for it. This is what savings does. Yay interest!! I am currently making a nice $45 a year from my $1000 that is just sitting in my savings. And once I get my $5000 CD out of the grasps of my mother's selfish bank, I will be making $300 a year!! That is $25 a month! For doing nothing!! And I am not even risking anything like I would be if I invested in stocks or bonds or such things. And like a normal savings account, I can withdraw from it when I wish (although the # of withdraws are limited).

So, what is your bank giving you on your savings account??? (Yeah, that's what I thought.) :-p

My old bank was giving my 1.3% APY on my savings. That isn't worth anything. I now get 4.5% APY. The choice is clear. Switch to ING Direct.

Why is ING so giving? They save money by not having bank branchs on every street corner. You get money in your account by transfering it directly from your current checking account.

Want a peice of the dough AND AN EXTRA $25?
Send me an email (awhiteraven124 [at]] aim [[dot] com) and I will send you the referral link. Use that link to open an account with an initail deposit of at least $250, and ING will give you a $25 sign-up bonus. Now you can't beat that!!!

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Tuesday, October 31, 2006


"We reach moments in our lives when a truth appears. A truth that..."

I don't really know what to say at the moment except that we should all look around us once in a while and really appreciate the world for the wondrous thing that it is. I heard an argument for God once that said that this wonder could not be random, therefore God made it. I like that. My form of God is different though.

It is a popular new age teaching that we create our own reality. I create my problems and make them as big and as hated as I want. What is to say we can't change that? I know that fear seems to be my biggest de-motivator. I sat there tonight, phone in hand, just too afraid to dial the number. I am too afraid of what will be on the other end. But if I wait too long, I may lose my chance forever.

I have done some things in the past year that I am not too proud of. Especially tonight. I can see just how trivial pride can really be. Ironic isn't it. Although fear and pride together are the worst.

ESFP - was it that hard to make the phone call? was it really that hard to say?

Pain is an odd emotion. But I never was un-happy. Does that make all the difference? I met a guy down at taft who asked me to type up a book for him. He has been telling me about the sacredness of truth. It hits home. I know. So much for "Little White Lies"

Time is a funny thing. WE never know what will happen tomorrow. That scares me. But remember: No fear, No regrets. Time has a lot to do with perseption. Time flies when you are having fun. I can't believe it has almost been a year now. And 2 and a half years. wow.

So go out and breathe. Trust me. It is the little things in life that matter.

Sorry for the incoherentness of this post. My mind is not together right now. Sorry.

I wish I could do more....

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Monday, October 30, 2006

The Mark List

This is a list of things to live by that I wrote based on my time hanging out with Mark. If you don't know who Mark is ask me later. We were friends before I came to Rice.

• Be nice to Everyone.
Mark was the kind of person that would do something nice for anyone, even if that person wasn't nice to him.

• Money is great, but be willing to give some to someone in need.
There was one time when I was riding with Mark over to the new house when he saw a car on the side of the road that seemed to be out of gas. He pulled over and asked the driver what was wrong. The driver told him that he was on his way to work and didn't have any money and ran out of gas. Mark immediately pulled out $5 and gave it to him. What I nice thing to do, I thought. We climbed back into Mark's truck and he noticed that he needed gas as well so we drove over to the gas station. When we got there, Mark pulled out $2 and was about to jump out of the truck. I asked him if that was all he was putting in. His response was "That's all I have". I offered to loan him $10. He looked down. "No, this is ALL I have" meaning that there wasn't any more money anywhere else. He had gaved almost all of the money that he had to help the man who was out of gas. Even if it put him in a similar situation. I payed for the gas.

• Be Spontaneous, You'll get where you are going eventually.
This is the one that I actively quote. You may have heard me say it before. Going anywhere with Mark was an adventure because we would spontaneously stop at about 4 different places before hand. We never got anywhere very fast. And it was great!

• Don't be scaried to say "I Love You"
Mark said "I love you" to everyone he considered a real friend. Me, Steve, my mom, My grandmother, the list goes on and on. He believed that people are way to reserved about saying it. (It always made Steve uncomfortable).

• These is no such thing as "Luck"
This is the only one that I may seem to not do for. I am always saying that I am lucky. But I think that Mark's definition of Luck is a tad bit different then mine. I believe that luck is the magic of life. It is the things in our lives that make us happy. Mark used the term to mean that if you had it everything was easy and you didn't have to work for anything. I do believe this. I do have to work at get things. And when I do, I am creating my own luck.

• Have Faith and Read you Bible
Mark and I used to go to church together, which was always an adventure because of the people that Mark knew at the church. We were always the last to leave. But Mark had tremendous faith. One day, I will post thr story of the fisherman and the coin. Truely inspiring.

• Laugh, even when you have no good reason to do so.
I have a funky laugh and Mark used to try to make me laugh to hear it. He would also make himself laugh so hard that most of the time he could not finish the jokes that he started without calming down first.

• Candles are your friend
I remember the mornings waking up and coming into the kitchen and there being 20 candles burning around the living room. It was gorgeous and smelled wonderful. Mark would sneek in before we got up and cleaned up and lit candles. What a great way to wake up.

• Don't be afraid to have fun
This is Mark's way of saying don't grow up. Alway keep that child's perspective on things. Children view the world with magic. Most adult lose that. But despite it all, Mark still had it.

• Salvage
This one was the theme of the year. My parents had an architectural salvage store that I worked at in Highschool. But I have always been a salvager. Mark reminded me just how fun reusing junk is.

• Remember that guys suck
You know the sex talk that you are suppose to get from your parents? Well, I didn't get it from my parents. I got it from Mark. He warned me that all guys my age just want sex and that you can't trust any of them. He was just worried about me.

• You can do it.
He wrote this on every letter he sent me. I would always tell me that I could do anything that I set my mind to. (This is coming from a guy who thought I was a genious because I knew what 3 X 3 was.) :-)

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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Kenny says it better then I can.

Every now and then I get a little lost
My strings all get tangled, my wires all get crossed
Every now and then I'm right up on the edge
Dangling my toes out over the ledge

I have been known to get frazzled from time to time, usually by being extra stressed about something. Whether it be social strain or too much work, I can't seem to stop myself from getting frazzled. I keep being told about how little the things that I am crying about really are, and I think I know that, but I get into this generalities mode and therefore generalize things to bigger then just the specific activity. That, or I the real thing that is bothering is completely different from what set me off. When I am like this, I am like a trigger ready to be set off. Crying is like therpy, I feel better afterwards - I can focus better afterwards (once I stop crying) - things get better.

I know that I should look on the positive side of things, but I am addicted to this and I don't know how to stop. Call it a current charater flaw. I am not sure of any practical steps to take to lean the correct direction. Just stopping is definitely not working. It seems to just cause me to stress out even more. I just need to lean that direction.

I know that one day, something will happen that I really cry about. And that scares me more than anything. I don't think about that and instead focus on the present, for that is all that we really can do.

I know that I will look back and see that I have now more then I think that I do. And maybe I will look back and think that I can actually talk better then I think that I can. Verbally write better then I think that I can.

I think I can, I think I can. And he could. As can I. But why do I keep thinking about just letting it slip? I am not a quiter.

I've been looking for something
Something I've never seen
We're all looking for something
Something to be

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Friday, October 27, 2006

Hartman Middle School

Ryan S and I went to Hartman middle school yesterday to do a swing demo/ swing history lesson. It was fun although it didn't turn out as well as we had hoped. I think 6 graders are a bit too young for partner dancing. (AHH! I have to touch a BOY!!) But we are going back again today to show some of the kids that didn't get to see us yesterday. We shall see how this day goes.

But more shocking then the fact that 6th graders can't sit still is the school itself. I went to use the restroom and realized that none of the stalls had toilet paper! I asked one of the little girls about the lack of toilet paper and she told me that they have to bring their own. Now, I know that the toilet paper could be stolen, but I would at least like to see a sign of toilet paper. Also, the girls stalls don't have trash cans so there were used things just sitting around and stuffed behind the toilet and such. It was gross. And there was no soap or soap dispenser or hand dryers. I am hoping that the new building that they are building have these things, but it makes me wonder about all of the schools that aren't getting a new building.

I knew that some of these schools are bad. I have heard Terry talk about his schools, but it is different seeing it myself. It is just sad. It almost makes me want to support the Robin-hood Program. It makes me thank my lucky stars that I went to the school that I did. It was public but it was an awesome highly ranked school.

Another thing that made me sad yesterday was the fact that language is such a barrier. there were class ruled that said "No language besides English is to be spoken in this classroom." And when I looked at the posters on the wall. Almost all of them had incomplete sentences and horrid grammar. In 6th Grade!!!


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Monday, October 16, 2006

This is Amazing...

Ok, I know this is 2 guys, but i totally want to be able to dance like that. They look amazing!

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Sunday, October 15, 2006

A Repost from LJ

I wrote this on June 12, 2006 on my LJ. I had forgotten about it and just re-found it so I decided to repost it on blogger.


why is it that I totally hate the most dominate philosophy/belief in society today? (think economics, not religion) There are 3 types of people in this world. those who work, those who don't, and those who live. Go ahead and chalk this up to youth, but maybe that is exactly what it is. I mean, youth has nothing to do with age. One of the youngest people I know is 50 and one of the oldest I know is 20. the number means nothing. And I swear to you that I will never lose that. I want that vitality, that view to last. It is who I am. I am not advanced, but in a why more advanced.

I am sick and tired of seeing things your way. Why don't you try to see them my way for once. you may be surprised at what you find. Your way almost ruined me.

Does anyone have any idea about what I am talking about? Does anyone know what I mean when I say that I believe in Magic? You see, God is what happens when you take Magic and conform it to societal philosophy. Adults lose magic. I don't even want to grow up. There is a subtle aspect to all this. I am not saying exactly what I mean. There is magic in the music. Sometimes more obvious then other times. Still no idea? Listen. That is it. That is me.

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New Mexico Balloon Festival

Yesterday, we went to the New Mexico Balloon Festival to see the balloons take off. It was a really cool experience to see all those balloons in the air at one time.

I was using my dad's digital camera, which doesn't zoom that well, so I couldn't take up close pictures. Then I realised that I could take pictures through the binoculars. :-)

This is a picture of a smilie face balloon. Isn't it cute!!

Just so you can get an idea about the number of balloons that there were in the sky, here is a video:

I highly suggest coming to see this event if you ever get a chance to.

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Saturday, October 14, 2006


So I have this belief in synchronisity. When there is a coincidence in my life, it is suppose to mean something. It means that I am heading down the right path.
Well, On thursday, I went to a Mindfulness talk at Rice sponsored by the Wellness center as an effort to reduce stress. I enjoyed it and decided that I would look into it a bit more. It reminded me a lot of the Buddhist meditation class that I went to at the Houston Buddhist temple out in Bellaire.
Anywho, I marked that on my list of things to do, but when I opened my daily read blogs this morning, one of the articles was about mindfulness. It also linked to another 43 Folders story on mindfulness.

I think that life is trying to tell me something...

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Thursday, October 12, 2006

BackPack + Treo Smartphone = Hot Stuff

So, I was thinking over my mind dump list from yesterday, pondering how I can organise it and I ran across these articles:
Mac Organization 1
Mac Organization 2

I have been toying with this GTD idea for a bit and wanted to see what they had to say. One of things that they mentioned as an inbox is Backpack. I had signed up for Backpack this summer and didn't use it, but I did remember that they had a mobile component. I could send emails to special emails to post things on my backpack page.

I had posted the mind dump entry from my phone, so I was looking for something that could do this. I was thinking of just creating a smart inbox and email these to-dos to myself, but that would be tedious because I would have to send an email for each item in order to be able to delete them as I did them. But Backpack solves this. I can send one email and it will seperate them into seperate check-off-able items.

Also, Backpack lets me have seperate pages so if I have a list of school to-dos, I will send them to my school page. That way, I can stay organised.

And where does the treo come in? I can store the emails in my Treo's Address book and then in the email program just type "Ba" and the list of Backpack emails comes up ready for me to send to. Now I can add to-dos to my list without actually syncing my phone!!!! W00t!

Let the to-do listing begin.

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Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Mind Dump

Ok, I was reading a blog yesterday. And the author was discussing the art of journalling and using your blog as a mind dump. I like this idea so I am going to create a list of all of the things on my mind that I need to do or think about. Here goes:
- clean out my email program. (set up gtd in mail and tag old email.)
- set up the inbox program.
- clean off desktop
- write hatbt outline.
- finish my lrc entry form (due friday)
- finish lrc powerpoint and outline.
- research in jones school library.
- clean my car
- find my ipod and trio cable (they are in the same baggie and probably in my car)
- turn in my perscriptions to cvs (it has a drive thru, so it ain't hard. I just keep putting it off)
- begin the stratagies part of the master plan for ML.
- talk to hank about scswing accounting.
- get swing list up to date
- get the swing videos downloaded and burned.
- send out info from elizabeth meeting.
- send email to tricia
- play with photoshop
- create a zulu pad for ML
- wash my dishes.
- clean my room.
- organise drawers in room.
- pack for NM
- read for logic
- do the ungraded hw
- read for accounting
- do my ling hw
- print the ling hw
- read the selling the dream book
- finish the new age book.
- compile booklist
- look for partridge book on amazon
- read the fung swea (sp) books
- read monisorri book.
- refind keychain pages and send them
- contact some ad ppl about samples.
- find health card
- bring ppl to ice hut
- rsds website
- call photo ppl
- write about ideal self.
- pay back a drink debt.
- remind hank about nail paint
- go ice skating.
- go to the zoo
- find blog example
- email katherine
- practice breakdance basic
- create ml ppl reference sheet. (maybe use the np mana program)
- dr. list
- get slips and candy for suitcase.
- divide daily button into 2.
- look up mice
- print tix tomorrow at 4.
- email rosie
- email patrick
- download si vids from youtube
- look up german study program.
- find someone to pick me up on tuesday. (ash? Aramis?)
- laura's dishs and my money
- address book update
- download sting cd
- wash hub cap that is in my shower.
- cancel vistaprint scam.
- set dashboard screens
- give back books that I borrowed.
- ask grandpa about gift.
- get dad b-day present.
- lunch with jenny
- baking with jenny
- knitting with jenny
- houston binder
- make strudels
- make pancakes
- steph's gift
- get quilt cleaned.
- german
- chinese calligraphy
- horse class
- bowling
- orange show
- get sarah rsds info.
- check our room booking for spr. (get paul to)
- find place for jazz soiree
- book js band
- rsds tango
- account hank's rent/ money

ok. That is good for now. I need to read as much as I can today in prep for tomorrow. (reli meeting). I will probably do this again soon.

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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Somethings got to give...

So I discovered something (although I think I already knew it and it just never affected me). Day Light Savings Time is sweet!
As we move more to winter, the sun rises later and later. I didn't realise this until I started getting up with the sun. And have been getting up later and later. Now it is dark when I get up and that is a little ichy. I don't like waking up before the sun rises. Anywho, Day Light Savings time allows the sun to once again rise earlier. This will help me a lot when it comes to getting up. They should do this more then twice a year.

Now I just have to make it til then...

I am trying to get Organised. My newest project is my Mail. It is a disaster and I want to clean it although I lack time. I am always busy between School and Marion's Ledge. No time to clean. I am going to set aside 30 min every other day or so to clean. Both my house and my computer. I have to do something! This is crasy!

Somethings got to give....

And speaking of somethings got to give, I am reaching that mid-semester slump. My great classes are beginning to get boring because of the repetition of my schedule. Walking to school is no longer that fun, mainly because there is nothing new to see. I need a bike and a really good chain. Because I don't want to drive.

And speaking of driving...

They closed Ashby parking. It used to be allowed that you could park there after 4pm, but the rules have changed and you now can't park there till 9pm. This may mean that I will be breaking down and getting a parking permit... Something that I really don't want to do. We shall see. I will think about it.

Something with school needs to change. I am slipping back into old habits. This is not good. I wasn't feeling well on Monday so I basically skipped all my classes. (hey! I had my reasons!!) But now, I woke up this morning with the thought that I should just stay home today. Ironically though, this is also what my Ling Prof thought so that class is officially canceled. But I still have logic.

But even beyond that, I going to class and not paying attention, which is effecting things. I wish I didn't get distracted so easily. Anywho, The thought is that I should try to take note on paper and not on my computer. The computer is distracting. I think paper notes will help me focus.

I am losing a lot of time to the internet this week. And I give Hank disapproving looks (not harsh, just rolling eye looks, because I know that he enjoys those mac blogs) for spending so much time blog reading, but now I am getting sucked into the trap. This is not good. The worse one of all is Facebook. Especially with that stupid home page that tells you everything about everyone. I lost reading time yesterday by looking up friends from Highschool. ::shakes head::

I think the internet can be used correctly, and the computer with it, I just have to figure out how... Any ideas?
Maybe not allowing computer use until after I get to school.

I am not sure how to make my classes, or my walk to school, less boring and more willing to keep my attention. I have been really enjoying that walk. hum... Maybe I should listen to music on the way to school. That would keep my attention... maybe? And it is not that the classes are actually boring... They are interesting. I just have a very short attention span. Maybe sitting in the front of the class will help in Logic. I will try that.

ok, speaking of school. I better run off to it. Laters...

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Monday, October 09, 2006


It has been an interesting day. For one, I didn't go to any classes. Well, I kinda did. I showed up to Logic, but I didn't feel very good so about 20 minutes of not really paying attention, I left and sat on the swing until class was over. I just was not in the mood to think. After that, I went and got a new set of braces without managing to get yelled at for waiting so long to make the appointment. But by that was over, I wasn't feeling well at all, so I went straight home and fell asleep. That was about 1:00. I finally woke up for good a little after 4, but was still so tired that I could barely walk straight. I managed to drag myself to Taft to watch the Swing lessons, but never did regain my full strength.

So, What is wrong with me?

You could say, duh Hail, you have cramps, but I think that there is something more to this. I did this a couple weeks ago as well and it was coupled with something similar to this one: forcing myself to stay awake. I didn't go to bed when I felt like it, I forced myself to stay up. (Hey, I had a good reason to!!!) But I wonder if that has something to do with how I feel.

Or I may just be thinking too much into this and it is just
that I have cramps and am low Iron or something.

I mean, last time, there was a lot of stress that accompanied my feeling bad. This time that emotional stress is not present. Sunday was great and relaxing and fun and I want a good repeat of it. There was relaxing, good food, excercise, fun and more. I am caught up on my homework except that I have a rather long book to read by thursday. And the only thing looming over my head is this leadership presentation coming up at the beginning of Nov. Nothing is really that stressful that I know about. The last stress was last Thursday about my swing, but Hank and I talked about that.

So maybe it is the cramps...
(PS. The Odwalla Super Protien Original is gross. It is orange juice based.)

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Thursday, October 05, 2006


I dream of myself being able to actaully work towards something. Really work towards something. Something hard. Really hard. I never have before. I don't have the will to. I am not really sure why I do this. I loved swing because I picked it up quickly. I got good pretty fast. And when the improving stopped. I wanted to stop. I got frusterated. I wanted to quit. Luckily I started getting better again. So I started likeing it again.

But now once again, I am not improving. I dance like me. But that seems to be settleing and I am getting to where I once again want to quit. And this time I am closer then last time. I have stopped going to Melody. And when I do, I haven't seemed to be enjoying it. And at Taft, I faked having too much to do so I didn't have to dance.

Now, don't get me wrong. I don't go to Taft because I feel I have to. I really enjoy the taft dance. I work the door. I set up the sound and lights. I feel in the know and partically in charge and I love that feeling. I wouldn't stop doing it for the world. But lately, I haven't enjoy the actual dancing part. It is like I am bored with it. I am not improving and the "work to improve" to "improvement satisfaction" ratio is not high enough. I don't want to put the work in that will allow me to get better. Therefore... I feel like quitting.

I don't think that I will quit because then I will have to face the shame of quitting. And I do enjoy it at times. Like when I was learning that routine that Ryan made up. That was awesome. I picked it up fast and it was extremely fun.

It is when I am having trouble learning something is when I have the problem. When trouble hits, Hailey wants to quit. :-( This is what is holding me back from learning to lead. I could not stand the shame of not being good. Everytime that Hank works with me on Leading, I get snappy and then I always end up regreting something. :,-( I snap when I get pressured and "I hate that!"

I don't know what to do about this. If I even think the words RSDS, I just want to scream. I wish that was not the case. But How do you change your emotions? How do I even lean that way? I don't know how to control my stress level over this?

One good example of this is the classes that I am teaching with Hank at RSDS. I am honored to get the opportunity to teach with Hank and I don't want to stop teaching with Hank, but It is just so darn frustrating. I feel that every comment I make is just dead air. I seem to say the same 3 or 4 things over and over in an attempt to say something. I want to say something. I really want to say something. If I don't say anything, I feel like I am not really one of the teachers. He could use any of the follows to fill my spot. I am expendable. I hate being expendable.

But I don't have anything to say. I understand it, but not in words. What words I do know are just things Hank says all the time that I am regurgitating. When I do have a unique idea, I can't say it. This must be how it feels to not really know english that well and always struggling for the next word. BUT ENGLISH IS MY ONLY LANGUAGE!!!

This doesn't happen only with the swing classes. I just notice it more then. No, I do this all of the time. Like the other day when I went to talk to Natalia about my leadership presentation. I didn't answer one question well. I stumbled through everything. It is like I don't actually know what I know. I store things away in a high cupboard in my mind where I can only get them down if someone pushs the cupboard over and helps me to open it.

What can I do? What can I try that will help make this better? I want to be able to talk like a normal person. I want to be able to teach like Jen does. But I just don't know how.

I have more to write about this. But I am going to save that for another day. Right now, It is my bed time and I said that i would post this before crashing. I hope that you can sleep better that that you looked into my brain a little. God Bless Blogs.

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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

My weekend to Today

Yesterday was quite a day! This whole weekend was quite a weekend. Some highlights (and a few lowpoints):

• My phone tryed to commit suiside on friday by jumping into a cup of water when I had to brake quickly while exiting the freeway. Luckily it failed. It took 2 days to turn back on and 5 to completely dry off under the screen.

• Conversation on Friday. Good and Needed.

• My cactus now has a new home. I hope that it gets happy and stops turning yellow. :-)

• I presented Marion's Ledge to my Leadership Rice class yesterday and got a ton of feedback. We did an excercise where I presented for 5 min and then they asked me questions and I was not allowed to answer. It was great! I also had a meeting with a friend that is an architecture student and she gave me advise about the building and lots to research and think about.

• I learned that 200,000 bricks that are 1.5 X 3 inchs will take over 600 ft of 15 ft wallspace to display. That is a lot. This is what I did during my ling class.

• At half price, I discovered a book called "Selling the Dream" that is about how to evangelise anything. It is a really good book and it has totally been taking me away from the Hannagraf book that I am suppose to be reading. :-> I got a great quote from it: "You may be rich. You may be famous. You may be popular. But you won't amount to much unless you change the world."

• Last night I went to the Rice Eonfire meeting. It is a new club that is about Social Entrepenourship and is associated with Leadership Rice. Through that, I am going to get consultant training. Woot. That should help with Marion's Ledge.

• I haven't downloaded any good freeware lately. :-/

This entry is probably not that interesting to anyone. But I thought that I would write it anyway. I haven't wrote in a while.

I am currently at Taft and just finished doing A LOT of accounting. I did my homework for both today and for thursday, so it took a while. And all with a very bad headache. But that gave me an excuse to buy a Dr. Pepper. I think that heart pains are better then a migrane. :-/ I now have a choice to either read an article on customers for my Leadership class or read the hanagraff book for Religion. I think that the hanagraf book sounds more appealing. It is about the New Age movement and what it concises of.

Ok... Back to Homework...

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Sunday, September 24, 2006

Odd things and Pretty Rings

Random points for today:

• I just took a water out of my fridge and it is completely frozen. Completely!!! I think that I have the fridge set toooo cold.

• I appear to be getting sick. That or my lymph nodes are rebelling. pooey.

• I think that I want to go to a break dancing class. It is cool to watch and even if I try to learn basics it will be good for my muscles.

• Despite being totally unfazed by blood and gore on TV and Movies, a swollen mole on my own body can make me extremely sick to my stomach.

• oh, and I got my backpack hung on a mole on Wednesday and now the mole is swollen about 4 times it's normal size. If it doesn't go done in a couple days, I am gonna see the doctor.

• I am reading a really good book about the New Age Movement. Aptly named, "The New Age Movement" by Paul Heelas. It is well written and easy to understand. He doesn't get lost in tangents like Alan Watts (The last book I read was Beyond Theology).

• The Museum of Natural Science only plays "Dark Side of the Moon" during the Summer. I wanted to catch it one more time, but I waited too long. :-( But I did see it once this summer already. I guess that I have something to look forward to for next summer.


• I am going to help out with Lindyfest this year! I told Larry that I would like to help and he told me that he would call or email me once he puts the list together of things to be done. :-)

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Wednesday, September 20, 2006

I'm Thinking
Just wondern' if the world is round
I am here
dancing on the ground
every little right side up
or upside down
Is this real?
Or am I dreaming?

The world is well. At least in my life!! :-) Everything is going wonderfully right now. It is like all the I have been working on throughout my life is coming together. I am waking up early! I am walking to school! I love my classes! I just got an A+ on my Logic test!

It is awesome when the world just works. Everything is in sync. Dreams lead me. I follow. I do. I don't try. I have learned that if you just go with the flow, life can be good. It can be one hell of a ride if you let it be.

Do you believe in Magic
In a young girl's heart?
The music can free her
whenever it starts.
I'd tell you bout the magic
Let it free your soul
But it's like trying to tell a stranger
about Rock 'n' Roll.

I recently read "Beyond Theology" by Alan Watts. It is a really good book and I would recommend it for anyone interested in Christianity and/or Hinduism. It takes the idea that Hinduism is true but that Christianity can fit nicely within the frame of reference of Hinduism. It gives an appealing interp to Christianity.

My Word!! The weather today is amazing!! I have my windows open and the attic fan on and it is awesome in this apartment. I actually feels like fall and it is not technically fall yet. (ok, 2 days is close enough, but still) I makes me just happy to be alive and breathing.

So Basically:
Life is GOOD!!
Enjoy it!!

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Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Best Mac Software for Students (and everyone!)

As a Junior at Rice and an avid Mac user, I thought that I would compile a list of software that I use all of the time. Most of it is free, some isn't, and some comes with your computer.
Here is my list of indespensible software:

~~~~ Freeware ~~~~

I think that most people will agree with me when I say the best software is free. It truely is.

  • Journaler - Journaler is a blog program that can be used for much more then that. It allows you to create an entry and then drop it in a folder. It keeps your post nice and orderly and internal to the program. My use: I use this program to take notes in. I can keep all of the notes in seperate folders labeled for my classes. It gives you the option of attaching things to an entry as well, so if I have something related to a specific class day, I'll just attach it. After trying Pages, Notebook, and other note software, this one definately is the most organized.
  • Schoolhouse - ok, this program has some faults for the college student because it seems to be written for High School Students and doesn't include such things as weighted grading scales. But the simplicity of this program, the mac feel, and the compatability with iCal and iPod lets this program win out. I tried Assignment X, but it was just too complex and still didn't have the features I wanted. I also tried Due Yesterday and had loading issues. It works great on my palm, but I couldn't get it to sync for the life of me. One cool trick that Schoolhouse has is the smart folders. You can create a folder that tracks exams, assignments, etc seperately. I put my whole sylabi into Schoolhouse so now it will track my assignments all semester without me having to refer to the paper. So with a little tweaking, this program works great for the college student!
  • Smultron - Weird Name, Great Notepad. This little program is a replacement for Notepad. It can be used just to compose (it wraps text), or for programming with keyword coloring. I used to use Textwrangler, but this program works so much better. It does the same stuff and more. And oh yeah, it has Tabs like any good program should.
  • Writeroom - True Full screen writing. You can set the color, font, size, screen widgth, and more to create the writeroom that works best for you. Mine is Black with Green writing. It look Matrixy. This is a feature that I used to only be able to find in programs like MacJournal, which I had to buy. This little program is great.
  • Virtue - Because some mac users actually don't have this program... Virtual Desktops. You create desktops and have programs on seperate desktops to reduce clutter. And Virtue has an option that lets you auto jump to the desktop of the chosen app. This program is a MUST HAVE!! I can't imagine living without it.
  • MegaZoomer - This is a program that lets you full-screen any cocoa based application (which is most Mac software). I have totally fallen in love with this program. Used in connection with Virtue with the Program Spotlighter turned on, this program does wonders to my computer's desktop organization.
  • Fermata - I am not sure what the symbol means in music, but this program allows you to freeze and unfreeze programs manually so that you can keep them open but not using any CPU space. This is great if you have to run any CPU hogs like Photoshop, Matlab, or Firefox. I like to freeze my internet browser when I am not using it or if I switch to another one without closing the first.
  • Active Timer - This Programs keeps track of what programs you are using on you computer. It is a great time tracker when you are on your computer. Beat that procrastination. Yeah, I know... You were only going to surf for 5 min. Right.
  • Textpander - This program lets you type one thing and really type another. Like if I type 'RSDSi' my computer writes Rice Social Dance Society. I was able to put the logic symbols and the greek symbols and the phonetic symbols in there so that I can take notes in Logic and Ling with my laptop. This program is going to pay-ware, but it is still free here.
  • Neo-office - I am a relatively new Neo-Office user, but from what I can tell, it is a complete replacement for Microsoft Office (And who would want Microsoft Office, it's huge!!!)
  • Gimp - It is a replacement for Photoshop and works pretty well. The only trouble is that it needs X11, which is an optional install with your OS, so if you can't find your CD, you will have to find a way to get it. It has more features then Fireworks (below)
  • Freemind - although I own and use MindManager, this is a VERY good free version of it. It has a lot of features that you can't find in many mind map programs out there. It can be a bit touchy at times, but it does the job.
  • Orator - Got a webpage that you have to read for school, but would rather lie down and close your eyes, get this program. This programs takes any text and converts it to a .mp3 file so that you can listen to your webpage instead of read it. Sweet.
  • Zulupad - This is a wiki based notepad program. It works as a good note-taking program, but my favorite use for it is a web-page text designer. You can have a page for every one of your webpages and link them together like you plan to have it work. Use with Curio (below) in which you can design the graphical layout, and you got yourself a well designed webpage.
  • Todos - "all" in Spanish - this program shows you at a glance all of the programs on your computer. Works great as a launcher, and very cool to see.
  • Adium - If you are still using IChat, here is a program for you. And there is a skin that gives you a floating Buddy LIst. and your chat windows are in tabs, so they don't take over your desktop.

    ~~~~Paid (but worth it) software~~~~~
Sometimes, there is a good one that they just insist on charging for. Here is a list. I am leaving out the big expensive chunky ones like photoshop and dreamweaver (Although I do include Fireworks). We all know those are powerful if you need them. These are programs that you may have never heard of or may have and just don't use. I love all of these and believe that they are well worth the money!
  • Intaglio - This program is the best Vector based page-layout program I have ever seen. Even from when I was using Windows. I still amaze myself with what I can do in this program. You know the Second Cup Swing logo? Hank made that with Intaglio. The best feature that this program has, in my opinion, is the ease at which you can make larger then one page layouts. It just lays it right out for you.
  • Curio - this is a thought collector. It has an internal internet browser that lets you research things and drag them into your workspace. You can scrapbook with it, you can reseach with it, you can design a website with it, you can do all kinds of things with this program. And there is a pen/pencil/highlighter tool that writes on anything!!
  • Omniweb - This is the browser for researcher and students and anyone that likes to look up many different things and save everything even if the program quits on you or you have to restart. It lets you have multiple workspaces for collecting different topics of information and automatically saves everything.
  • Notebook - It is, as the name suggests, like having a spiral notebook, but the pages are as long as you want them to be
  • Pages - Most mac people will already have this program as a replacement for Word, but if you are still a word user, ditch it today. Pages has a great use of Styles and can save and read things in many formats, including .doc. Add Neo-office to this and you have an Office Free computer (yay!!!)
  • Mind Manager - if the Java aspects of Freemind are driving you crazy or you need something a bit more, try MIndManager. It is a great little mind mapping program that doubles as a project manager. Sweet.
  • Fireworks - this is my graphical program of choice for Mac. It doesn't have as many features as Gimp or Photoshop, but it does the basics really well. It works well if all you are doing is fixing up pictures for the Web.
And if you are a student, check out Academic Superstore before buying any sort of software!! I Cheaper software!!

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First Day of Classes

It is amazing how the best things for you really hurt. Pain. And that rubbery feeling that goes with intensity.

What am I talking about?

I walked to school this morning. And then walked a mile to the store at lunch. And then back to Rice. And at 5:30, I will be walking home. Yeah. That is a lot of walking. And now I am a bit tired and sticky. But, I was told, that within the week, I won't feel it anymore. I hope so.

I am going to do well this semester!!!

This is my Goal!

I ended up dropping my Religion Seminar without going to it. Now I need to return books. I also have to return my lin al book. I decided not to take that either. It occured to me today that I could easily pass/fail my accounting class. But part of me doesn't want to. If I were smart, I'd pass/fail the leadership class. They have a tendency to give lower scores then you'd think.

I am going to really struggle with getting to Accounting (it's at 8). But I am going to do it. I managed to go to work everyday this summer. That was empowering. Granted, I started being late, but I did make it. I am going to wake at 6:30 and leave home by 7:30 and walk to accounting. I will be getting up early and in shape at the same time.

Despite one hour that left me with a sour feeling the rest of the day. The first day of school was a good day.

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Thursday, August 24, 2006

My Day with Wendy

I spent my day so far with my cousin Wendy. She has MS and can't drive so I took her to the Spa to get a facial and to run errands.


I don't understand the consept.
The massage your face with cream.
Yeah. Sounds nice.
But for $80?


I was really good to see Wendy! I haven't seen her in almost 2 years. She has gotten a lot weaker since then and her vision is worse, but she can still get around pretty good.

She is in Houston and so I am. I don't know why we haven't gotten together sooner. :-/


Now I am about to work more on stuff that I was working on last night.

But First, a drink

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Mac - Hey Folders!!

Hey all you Mac users, I found this cool little free utility that is cool and uber simple. It is called Hey Folders!! and allows you to change the folder color along with highlighting the words in Tiger.

Check it out:

Cool eh? And the best part is that it's free. So download now.

Discovered through: Freeware Mac

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I have a fetish. At least, I think it is a fetish.

I like Sheet Protectors.

A lot.

I have a ton of them and use them for all kinds of paper holding projects. One of my favorites is notes from class. I make a binder with all of my notes from a class and then when I am studying them, I can write all over them with dry erase markers.

But Today....

I make....

A Presentation Binder!!!!

I am working with a Non-Profit Corporation to help it get started (more on that later), and I am putting together an info binder with Mission, A Photo tour, and Organizational documents to show key ideas of the Non-profit and how far along it is on formation.

It's Pretty!!!!!!

Everything is in SHEET PROTECTORS!!! Hot Damn!!

Ok, I am weird and I know it. So Shoot me. (please don't really...)

I still have folders to sort through. Back to work....

But I leave you with this from Savage Chickens:

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Advice Perception

Here is a little tip that I recieved from a friend. It is very useful and can make the difference between success and failure in certain cases:

When you go into a meeting of any kind, be open to what you get out of it. Don't limit yourself to one thing and then, if you don't get that one thing, give up. Instead, set a goal to get 3 things out of the meeting, even if they are not your primary targets.

For Example:
If you have a meeting with someone in order to ask them a favor for you and they decline, Ask them if they know of any one that may be able to help instead or where you can look for information about whatever you were asking them to do, or any other information that they may be able to offer.

With this perseption, you will never go away from a meeting empty handed!!!!!

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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Me Now

I have ignored this blog for a long time in favor of my Live Journal, but no longer. I am tired of LJ. It is time to return to the joy of blogger.


It is amazing what one summer can do to a life.


It is amazing what one year can do it a life.

More Change.

I am no longer the person that I was a year ago.

- I am no longer a physics major.
- I am no longer stuck in a book that I read to read and not to remember.
- I am no longer straining for something that I have found to not be real and true to my life.
- I have a new mission. A New Goal.
- I am no longer so stuck in the Academic world that I am afraid to leave it.


And though all that, I have begun to re-discover myself as I used to be.

As much as a hippie as I could be with my mother around.
+ Loving life.
+ Seeing that majic that is everywhere in the world.
+ Having a high Self-esteem.
+ On a mission. From the Universe.
= free spirit, loving her world.

How did Christianity make such a bad impression on me. I mean really? Its not that bad. The religion isn't. It is the church that I seem to keep having problems with. They just are not very open. At least most are not.

I have also learned that you don't have to be coniving to survive in life. I am still learning this one.


I am still growing and still learning, but I know my path. My path is to follow the unpath, where ever it may lead me. Putting one foot in front of the other.

Time to get to Work.....

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