Friday, May 8, 2009

tip the maid

Today was a day that some nights I truly believed would never come. A day that I've dreamt about numerous times after drifting off while studying for a midterm. Today I put on a cap and gown, went to commencement exercises, and received my diploma from the University of Utah. Ah bliss...

Wait, no. I'm in Ecuador having a normal day at work while the rest of my graduating class walks. It's okay. I'll still get my diploma and everything. I thought I would care less about graduation day and walking and the cap and gown, but I'm actually a little sad not to be involved with the festivities. Plus I won't have pictures of myself in a cap and gown to prove to my children that I really did make it through college. Oh yeah. The diploma. Okay, I'm good.

So now what? That's the big question, right? I have a B.A. in Political Science and Spanish and a minor in Latin American Studies. Someone please tell me what I'm supposed to do now! I've heard the "go to law school" suggestion a billion times. No, thank you. Three years of memorizing stuff out of big books and writing long papers does not sound worth the reward. Practicing law. blugh. No offense to all you law school grads. I admire your knowledge and skills. I just don't envy them.

Getting a Master's Degree has always appealed to me. I kind of always thought in the back of my mind that I would like to get a Master's Degree in something. A few months ago I was seriously considering what I would like to study on a higher level. Education? Immigration Studies?Language Interpretation?

Well let me tell you a little secret. What I'd really like to study right now I would be much better off learning from family, friends. and the internet than from a professor. Here are some things I really want to learn at this point in life. I don't know where it all came from, but here you have it.

-I want to learn to sew so badly. I made a quilt for Jonathan for his birthday in January (with a bunch of help from my mom). He loves it. I thought it was fun. My mom, my mother-in-law, and both grandmothers are all talented seamstresses. One of my great-grandmothers made quilts to sell. Another great-grandma made all kinds of clothes for herself and her children. It's just in my blood and I'm itching to learn.

-I'd love to be a great photographer. I think photos can be so inspiring and I'd like to learn how to take better ones.

-I'm also feeling strong desires to learn web design, coding, etc. I'd love to be able to create a website from scratch. Jonathan would be a big help to me learning this and then maybe we can actually make some money from it.

-When I was single, I didn't feel the need to cook too much. Cereal, bread, and leftover Jasmine food are fine with me, thanks. Now that I'm married, I love cooking for Jonathan. I get so much satisfaction enjoying a meal with him that I made. He's always so happy and appreciative when I cook something for him. This has motivated me to want to learn to be a better cook. Maybe even a really good cook. I know plenty of great cooks, so tips and recipes shouldn't be hard to come by.

-Sort of in the cooking realm... I want to learn how to can fruits, veggies, and jams. Canning?! Seriously? It just seems so practical. I must be turning into an old lady.

- Another random thing I want to learn. Furniture restoration. I know, it sounds weird, but I am so fascinated and inspired by some "before and after" projects I've seen on crappy old chairs, coffee tables, headboards, etc. It seems like it would be so satisfying to bring some beauty into an old, ugly piece of furniture. I tried to reupholster my dad's old wing back chair in the weeks leading up to my wedding. I succeeded in ripping off most of the fabric... and nothing more. Sorry dad. I'll finish it when I get home!

Now that I'm done with my Bachelor's Degrees I can finally focus on what I really want to learn. Is that sad? Anyone know if any Universities offer a Master's Degree in Canning/Re-upholstery/Web Design/homemaking? ...didn't think so.

I have to ask. Mom and Dad, I know you haven't heard all of this from me. Are you surprised? Do people normally wish for a sewing machine, a better oven, and a good camera after graduating from college?

Realistically speaking, I do need to have something in mind for when Jonathan and I get back to the real world in August. He'll go back to his school that charges an arm and a leg. Thus I hope to find a good job where I can be happy doing whatever I'm doing. My dream job would be to work with a humanitarian NGO like the one we're interning for right now. However, I would consider almost anything else... as long as it doesn't involve filing papers and making copies all day. I need something that makes me think.

As for my opinions about what I learned in college (because I know everyone's dying to know), I will just say that I'm glad I speak Spanish. I love Latin America, it's history, culture, and it's people. I'm grateful for the knowledge I have in the political arena but I will never (ever ever ever) attempt to hold a public office. Maybe I'll expound on that at a later date.

Anyway, the many, many all-nighters, papers, note-taking, flashcards, parking tickets, power-point presentations, puking during finals, and study groups have finally (FINALLY) come to an end. I made it. I'm so glad.

I'm going to end this rambling post and leave you with the profound last sentence of the commencement remarks made by David McCullough at my graduation today (which I read online).

"And wherever you go in your travels to come, and I'm sure you will go far, before checking out of a hotel or motel, be sure to tip the maid."


Lori Ann said...

CONGRATULATIONS!! Welcome to the 15.5 % of Americans who have their bachelors degree:) I am sorry that you couldnt go to your graduation. I didn't want to go to my undergrad either, but I did and I was happy I did. It gave me a sense of accomplishment and clo

I love all of the things you want to learn! Sounds like you will be a kick-a homemaker, Mom one day.

I would get an advanced degree. Its so much fun to throw into random conversation. "Yeah, when I was in grad school" or "So, after I got my masters"

Anyway, you have a very mature persective and I am sure you will be brilliantly successful in whatever you do.

¡Y la cosa más importante a hacer es hacer vida una aventura, que es parece usted está haciendo ya!

Michemily said...

May I just share my list of what I want to do when I'm done so you can see how similar we are?

-apply to work in a German bakery for a while so I can learn to bake German goodies and eat lots of food.
-take organ lessons
-read a book in the library every day
-learn how to make Quitten jam
-paint pictures

And I didn't go to my bachelor's graduation either.

David and Brooke Gallagher said...

Congrats!!! It's to bad you had to miss your graduation, but like you said you have the paper to prove it! It sounds you are going to be an awesome home maker and the best mom! There is so much you taught me already! Can't to see all the new things you will be making and creating. What's the next project on your list of things?

Lori Ann said...

p.s.- In some other countries "tipping" is a slang term for sleeping with someone..lets hope he didnt mean that.

cathy said...

Oh, I'm so excited for all of your potential hobbies! I agree, there is so much to do. I don't get people that say they're bored. I'd love to go to culinary school, open a bakery, write a book, take piano lessons, and learn more about gardening and canning. Everyone is doing big gardens this year - I'm thinking of investing in a presser canner. By the time you get home we'll be canning away! Funny, you remind me of Grandma Clark in so many ways.

P. Chamberlain said...

So proud of you on your graduation!!! Glad to see you finally coming around on learning what is "most important" (Ha, Ha). I have always admired your drive to learn something new (except your desire to learn how to drive and own a motorcycle).

Love you and miss you!