Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I'm gonna miss this place

I have to say that 2010 has been a little difficult so far, and I'm really struggling in school this semester. The full time schedule and the classes have been hard to deal with. I'm making lower than expected grades in two of my academic classes, and it is very disheartening. I'm also still not well most mornings, so I'm barely making it through Design without being sick. It is hard to pretend that I'm not miserable. I want so much to be a good student and make everyone proud, but right now I'm not doing that. The exhaustion and frustration nearly brings me to tears, and at the present time I feel that I'm not cut out for this college thing at all. I'm tired, in terrible pain, and unusually depressed. I don't want be this way.

But I count my blessings daily. I know I'm lucky to be in college at all. My God, this is my third or fourth attempt for crying out loud. And I'm here, in school, learning the elements of design like I always wanted. Sometimes I stand in that room and look around, and all I can do is shake my head, hold back the tears, and say thank you. It is surreal. I'm finally here. And when it's time to go, I'm gonna miss this place.

There are days when I love being at school and being around everyone. There are days when I want to adopt half the people in the art department because they just flat out make my heart smile. Being involved in the club gives me a reason to get out of bed, and I pray that I can somehow make a positive impact. I don't take a minute for granted, because I know that someday soon, I'm gonna miss this place.

There are days when I get aggravated, upset, and stressed out. There are days when I can't stand the thought of getting out of bed to go. There are days when I feel like I don't belong and I'm not worthy of anyone's time. I get so frustrated with myself and sometimes others. But in the midst of all of these feelings, I remind myself of where I've been and where I am now, and I know how much I'm gonna miss this place.

I may crawl away with lowsy grades, but I'm gonna keep trying. God bless my teachers for bearing with me. I love them for it. So I will continue to hang in there as best as I know how. I'm here and I'm thankful. I care too much and I've worked too hard to give up now.

And on top of that...I'm really, really gonna miss this place.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

50 Facts About Me

If you got to know me, you would find...



When I laugh, I do it loudly. When I cry, nobody can stop me. When I pray, I mean it with all my heart.

I take life seriously, even when I’m acting like a complete goofball.

I grew up poor, unpopular, and misunderstood. It taught me well.

I am grateful and do my best to never take things, people, places, or experiences for granted.

I’m very empathetic and find myself greatly affected by people’s moods and circumstances. I’ve cried myself sick countless times over the suffering of complete strangers. I wish I could fix everything for everybody, but it’s not possible. That’s why I decided not to become a social worker (although I still consider it at times).

I’m owner and operator of ugottafriend.com, a website that I started years ago as a way to share my life, my various efforts, and my stories with the world. I am very open and honest on my blogs, and I don’t regret it one bit. I’ll talk about almost anything, including “TMI”…the only exception being intimate relationships, because I feel that crosses the invisible line of respect. I have had very few negative experiences online…the good far outweighs the bad and I consider myself very blessed. I have made wonderful friends that I love dearly and many of them have become “in real life” friends (I hate the term “in real life”, for the record…it’s ALL real life! So I prefer to call them “locals” instead). :)

I strive to be well-rounded. I like babies, flowers, puppies, sappy love songs, and nice guys. I also like cars, sports, tattoos, Harley-Davidson motorcycles, and martial arts…especially ninjas. :)

I am very, very, very happily divorced.

I am content being alone 95% of the time. The other 5% usually involves being miserably awake at night with no one to snuggle with (aka harass). :)

I love road trips and dream of traveling.

I’m an old soul.

I’m chronically ill, tired, and in pain. Some days are better than others, but it never goes away.

Humor keeps me sane. Laughing is absolutely necessary to my survival.

I love goofy people.

I almost never watch television, and I don’t think I’m missing much.

If I did watch television, it would involve sports, food, discovery, nostalgia…something along those lines.

I like cartoons. I do character impressions regularly. Sometimes, they’re actually good.

I couldn’t catch a tune if it fell right smack into my hands. Cajuns can’t sing. Trust me on this.

I sing in the car at the top of my lungs anyway, because I can.

I also break into song at random. I pity the fool that witnesses such moments.

I love babies more than ANYTHING. There is nothing more precious and wonderful on this earth.

I can’t have children.

I choose not to date so I don’t suppose it matters anyway.

I have had a wide variety of occupations…printshop operator, paralegal, executive secretary, office admin, nanny…too many to list!

I occasionally rant about bras. I feel I’m entitled since I’m forced to wear the ungodly things every day of my life.

I am a Christian who ditched the religious stereotype years ago. I believe it’s all about relationship. Show the world the love of God by showing love to the world. I have the most diverse circle of friends of anyone that I’ve ever met. Christians, agnostics, jews, wiccas, new agers, republicans, democrats, independents, raging liberals, radical conservatives, rich people, poor people, crazy people(ha), famous people, people who will never be famous, popular people, wallflowers, sick people, people who have more energy in their pinky than I’ve ever had in my entire life, writers, artists, musicians, executives, attorneys, doctors, teachers, cashiers, janitors, retirees, ex-cons, people who are a lot like me, and people who are absolutely nothing like me. I love them all! And I like most of them too! *wink*

I don’t like: Liars, manipulators, abusers of ANY kind, creeps, racists, judgmental people, selfish people, mean people, snotty self-righteous people, and stupid people in general. That’s all! :)

I was named after a paper doll that my mom had as a child.

I’m a lover AND a fighter!

And I’m darn snuggly too! It’s ‘cause I’m FAT (or as I like to say…FLUFFY)!

Charity work gives me a reason to get out of bed.

I’m in college for the fourth time…still in my freshman year as of Feb 2010.

I am a Bob Ross Certified Instructor. I teach people how to paint happy trees.

I want to be a real artist when I grow up.

I can eat an entire box of fruit roll-ups in one sitting.

I am a kindergarten dropout.

Ironically, this kindergarten dropout scored a 169 on the official I.Q. test. Don’t ask me how that happened. I imagine divine intervention, because it sure as heck isn’t natural talent.

Especially since I ABSOLUTELY SUCK at math. My brain just doesn’t compute it. It makes my eyes bleed. Darn you, evil math. Darn you to heck.

I have social anxiety and absolutely terrible speaking skills.

If I pick on you, it’s because I’m trying very hard to be comfortable around you.

If I’m not comfortable, it’s most likely not your fault. Unless you’re a creep, then it’s your fault.

I live with a sense of urgency, because I know I am not promised tomorrow. I’m lucky I made it this far.

I wouldn’t be here to begin with if the March of Dimes had not helped save my father’s life in 1952.

I have six siblings and two step-siblings, including two who died way, way too young.

My grandmothers are my heroes, and I miss them horribly.

I think cats are hilarious, and I post funny captioned pictures of them regularly. I’m not actually a cat person, though, and wish that all eight of the strays that hang out in my yard would GO AWAY…and take the spiders, raccoons, and armadillos with them.

I studied the cultural origins and meanings of names for years, and had my own baby name website at one time. I used to be able to give you information about almost any name off the top of my head. (But now I’m old and don’t remember any of that stuff.)

I worry too much, no matter how hard I try not to.

I desperately want to make a difference in people’s lives.

I’m really just a big nerd! :D

Monday, February 15, 2010

What's goin' on...

MERCY! This has been a wild year so far. The best that I can do right now is a summary, so here ya go...

Health: Since greatly increasing my potassium intake, I've seen a huge improvement. I still have a long way to go, but I'm half way there. I'm officially in "recovery mode", and so thankful. Once I'm back in "maintenance mode", I will be in much better shape. I can't wait. I took an hour of videos about all of this but YouTube is being a punk and giving me errors when I try to upload. Anybody have any suggestions on other upload sites? Facebook and Blogger don't cooperate with my vids, either. Guess I'll just have to keep trying YT.

Surgery: It went beautifully as I said, and I have been released by my surgeon. January was very rough on me physically, and my moods were swinging like crazy due to the sudden change of hormones post-surgery. THANK GOD, I feel like I'm almost my old self again. Driving down the road and bursting into tears for no apparent reason was so aggravating! HA! Glad that unruly mess is over and done with. God willing, I won't be blogging about my uterus ever, ever again. You don't have to thank me...you're welcome! :)

School: Finally caught up on school after missing a couple of weeks. What a relief! I received an invitation to join Phi Theta Kappa due to last semester's 4.0. I think I'm going to join as a way to support the students at this school. I've grown to love the place and people dearly, and even though I feel awkward at times, somehow I also feel like I am meant to be there. I will be sad when I have to leave soon.

Teaching: I have resumed teaching Bob Ross workshops. Although physically difficult, it's going well. My students are positively wonderful...couldn't possibly ask for more!

Art: I'm working on several new Bob Ross paintings, but also dabbling in other mediums...acrylics, ink, pencil, etc. I'll share my new portfolio soon. Also working on henna tattoos and will start advertising my services this week.

Charity: Raised $465 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through my last two Bob Ross workshops of 2009. Had to bring the beans and rice challenge for Haiti to a complete halt due to my decline in health and drastic change in diet, but I'm sending a donation to Compassion International this week. Please consider giving to Haiti in this incredible time of need. Locally, I'm involved in a charity event this Saturday via Art With Heart...more on that later.

This week: Research paper on therapeutic art, done. Deep cleaning the kitchen, almost done. :) Mardi Gras holiday tomorrow. Two tests to take Wednesday. Homework homework homework. Running business errands all over the Mississippi and Alabama coast. Gonna try to find time to paint as well. And sleep. Definitely sleep. Sleep is my friend.

GIVEAWAY COMING IN MARCH! EVERYBODY DELURK AND GET READY!!! :)

<3
Kelli

Saturday, February 13, 2010

To Write Love On Her Arms



Helping those suffering from depression, self-affliction, and suicidal tendencies. Join the movement at http://www.twloha.com.


(P.S. - Henna tattoo, left arm)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NEW ORLEANS SAINTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Garrett is awesome, and Tracy Porter's BEAUTIFUL interception will go down in history!!! I jumped. I clapped. I cheered!

But my favorite moment of the Super Bowl...



...was this precious man, crying and holding his baby boy.

Kudos to Drew Brees and the Saints for a job well done. You've made the city of New Orleans and people all across the country very proud. I've never been so happy with a football season in all my life! Keep up the great work, boys, on and off the field. God bless!

~Kelli

Thursday, February 4, 2010

School and Teaching Update

I have a lot of blogging to catch up on, but I also have a lot of schoolwork to do, and that takes priority. While I have a minute, however, I figured I would ramble about this semester and my teaching gigs:

Surgery went very well on January 4th, but I returned to school this semester in horrid shape with the Periodic Paralysis...the worst I have been in years. I could barely lift my arms and legs at times and I was constantly nauseated and disoriented. I realize now that I should have gone to the ER, but hindsight is 20/20. My condition continued to decline and I had to withdraw from my Drawing class - broke my freaking heart. Also pissed me off. A lot.

Thankfully, I have had a tremendous breakthrough in my condition, and while I have a long way to go in getting it under control again, I'm half way there. Huge blog about this coming soon, I promise.

So I returned to school, and I'm trying my best to catch up. I have 13 hours (after dropping Drawing)...English Comp II, Computer Apps, Physical Science I, and Design II.

English II is nothing but writing. Writing writing writing. Somebody told me last semester that it was mostly reading and discussing literature. WRONG. It's writing, with a side order of writing, and writing for dessert. Writing. Can you feel the excitement? I'm a writer, yes, but not of topics that I care nothing about, and not on a deadline. But I am this semester. So suck it up, Kelli, and start writing.

Computer Applications is a necessary evil. I took $1200 worth of Microsoft Office classes a few years ago, only to have Office 2007 come out a month later and it be DIFFERENT from what I had just taken. Thank you, freaking Microsoft. So now I'm learning Office 2007 Professional. Evil. But necessary.

Physical Science is taught by none other than the man who taught Chemistry at my high school when I was there 16 years ago! What are the odds of that? He is a HOOT...funniest teacher ever! I absolutely LOVE him! The course is freaking me out somewhat...has a lot of math and I can't do higher math. I aced the first quiz ONLY because my dear friend Katherine tutored me prior to the test. I would have most definitely failed otherwise! WHEW...

Design II is of course my LOVE. It is extremely frustrating right now (partly due to being behind and partly due to being more sick and miserable than usual), but I am trying my best to hang in there and not drive my teacher batty. Sometimes I wonder if I am, but he has the patience of a saint and I'm grateful for that. Have I mentioned that he's wonderful? Oops, I said it again. :) Ok really, all joking aside, I'm just thankful to have great teachers in college. Junior High and some of High School was an absolute nightmare for me, and I've heard stories from folks who lived miserable college lives. That is something that I feared. Due to my health and the way stress affects it, it wouldn't take much for me to bail. I'm just so relieved that I don't feel the need to.

TEACHING! Yes, I'm going to be teaching again starting this Saturday. Thank the Lord that I'm gonna be able to do it. It is my only income (and a low one at that), so canceling classes really hurt me. I look forward to returning to Hobby Lobby in Mobile and Biloxi...I love my students!!! They are the best...truly...I am so blessed!

This is Seascape Month in Mobile. I will be teaching the wave in our first class and then we will do it again in a more detailed seascape in the second class. I have a full class in Mobile and had to stop advertising...that's a good problem!!! I'm working hard to keep it going.

If my health continues to improve, I will be well enough to make the trip to Florida for my Bob Ross Florals certification. This will open up new doors and double my class load (and income) if I can pull it off. Praying that I can make this dream a reality this summer!

I guess that's all for now. I need and appreciate your continued prayers, friends. Talk to you soon.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Not enough hours in the day

Just saying hi and I'm not dead...ha! This has been a crazy couple of weeks (months? years?) and I'm still in the midst of the craziness. I am planning a loooooooong blog and probably a video as well that will explain a LOT about my conditions and exactly what's going on right now. That being said, I'm slowly recovering from a major relapse that nearly put me in the hospital, and I'm trying my best not to fail this semester on top of that.

Not enough hours in the day, that's for sure.

I'll be back soon. Love to all.

Kelli