an unusual case

After more than seven years of teaching, it’s quite difficult to be surprised with anything student related. One has developed a rather realistic perspective of things as well as expectations.

Every semester, I find myself working with students who I have accepted are too busy projecting a meaningful life in their respective online accounts to appreciate the effort and time teachers put into designing class activities and exercises. This I have accepted is the norm.

At around four in the afternoon, one of the newly hired student assistants approached me and handed me a ribboned brown package. A Valentine’s Day present for the supervisor she said. The student requested that I open the package after she has timed out for the day and has left the room. I could sense her embarrassment for the crumpled wrapping and the value of the gift. She said mumbled an apology for the gift. It’s what we could afford, she said. She and the other student assigned to me shared the expenses for the gift. They haven’t even received their first late pay yet. And I haven’t given even them anything for Valentine’s Day.

A pleasant surprise :)
A pleasant surprise 🙂

Minutes after she left the room, I found myself still staring at the gift. I sent them my thanks. The gift was a nice gesture. I need not unwrap the package. I just stared at it and realized how a nice gesture can be such a pleasant surprise.

When the years have trained you to expect a high sense of entitlement and self-centeredness by default from all the students you encounter, you forget how to respond to a few exceptions. I can finally add one positive entry about work.

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mako’s night out

2015-02-12 20.24.47
Took Mako to his first February Fair earlier this evening. He spent most of the time eating grass and rubbing his back against the grass. He did enjoy seeing lots of people and meeting other dogs! I gave him some glow sticks more for safety than aesthetic purposes. Some sections of the fair grounds can be quite dark and crowded.

 

It’s a go!

Got the call. It’s confirmed. We’re set for a release of a new product hopefully this Friday. I’m so excited!

The contact from the printing press has been silent for a week, uncertain whether they could pull off the job specifications. A few seconds ago, they confirmed that they can do it – and that they deliver (hopefully on Friday) before the start of classes.

Took a loan to help fund this new project. Worst case would be me being stuck at my job for the next two years as I settle the loan.

The good part of taking the risk would be managing to profit a little and have something to look forward to in the next two years. The dread would still be there but at least I have something to look forward to.

On a more serious note, I finally accepted that I’ll never have the enough money to buy a house if I rely on this job alone. While transferring to another job is an option, I have to make the most of what is existing. And if I am to stay, at least I’ll have something to take my mind of the negativities from the workplace.

So far, it’s been very effective. This past week, I felt so guilty thinking about the side job while at work that I didn’t utter one complaint. Still, it does feel odd having shifted the focus from work – the only focus I had before – to the side job.

This is what the side job looks like.20150109_233658

I was lucky that the mother was out of town for a week. That’s one week’s worth of working in peace! – in an air-conditioned space! -for free!

Okay, I was finishing up on the latest draft of the (supposedly) monthly publication we were to release next week. I wanted to finish the revisions so I could send the files to the press and I can make notebooks free of guilt.

I just wish there was a 7Eleven nearby so I could gulp on coffee while working on the notebooks.

Here’s to a weekend of (working in) peace!

gone notebook crazy

Finished my first set of notebooks, notepads, and planners for the year! I say first  because I plan to practice some more and hopefully come up with a batch that would be good enough to profit from.

Sometime last year, I realized that the only way I could stop spending for notebooks would be if I made them and (again) hopefully profit from that.

80 pages white book paper (blank) Made use of old jeans that used to take half of the closet. The denim was too thick for the binding machine so I had to manually make those holes.
Notebooks
Covers: denim
Pages: 80 sheets white bookpaper, 70 gsm, blanks
Made use of old jeans that used to take half of the closet. The denim was too thick for the binding machine so I had to manually make those holes.
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Notebooks
Covers: cloth (denim, canvas, prints, old cotton shirts with silkscreened prints)
Pages: 60 sheets, tricolor sheets, 70 gsm, blanks)
Planners Covers: cloth (prints)  Pages: 65 cream colored paper, 70 gsm
Planners
Covers: cloth (prints)
Pages: 65 cream colored paper, 70 gsm

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Covers: denim, canvas, and prints cloth  Pages: 50 sheets, white bookpaper, 70 gsm, blanks  Made use of the remaining portion of the double/twin loop wires to make these notepads.
Notepads
Covers: Cloth (denim, canvas, and prints)
Pages: 50 sheets, white bookpaper, 70 gsm, blanks
Made use of the remaining portion of the double/twin loop wires to make these notepads.

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All in all, I finished ten planners, eight notebooks with tricolor sheets, four denim covered notebooks, and eight notepads during the break. I’m quite pleased with that. If only I was as productive in the other entries in my Christmas Break To-do.