Thursday, January 21, 2021

Thank You for the Help

 Thank you to everyone who used the "Buy me a coffee" button to help me pay for my website domain. I was able to get Weebly to stop charging me for a premium account, and they even refunded the recent annual charge for that. I was left with only a $40 annual fee for the domain, and you all have very generously stepped up and helped me with that. I'm good now until the end of 2021! Yay!

I'm adjusting to life in Arkansas and am learning to live my life in Mom's spare bedroom with kitchen privileges, my own bathroom, and my sewing machine set up at one end of her art room. She's getting used to my sometimes obsessive tidiness, and I'm learning to live with her ... um ... opposite of that.

I got a rather rude awakening when I first started job hunting here. Ageism is definitely a factor. Also, I can't teach without a state teaching certificate or a master's degree. They just don't have any equivalent of our Canadian LINC program, and I did not have luck breaking into teaching the G.E.D. When I applied for city and state clerical jobs, I somehow did not make it past the clerical battery tests even though I'm pretty darned good with Excel and Word, remember basic high school algebra, and surely knocked the English section out of the park.

Oh, well. I took the rejections as a sign that I should just focus on taking good care of mom and of my brother since he currently depends on me to visit him and dress his wounds five mornings per week. I put the job search on hold.

Returning to my old Quaker Meeting, I found that they were right in the middle of a discussion re what to do about a new logo since nobody could find the original of a sketch I had made in the 90s of the Craftsman style meetinghouse. The digital version was degraded. I volunteered to develop a new image, and I've been working on that ever since. Someone told me about Inkscape, a free and open-source graphics software that is super powerful. But the menu system made me feel like I was trying to learn to fly a commercial jetliner, so I paid $17 for a masterclass with Nick (Logos by Nick), which I completed this morning after devoting hours and hours and hours to watching the videos and practicing with each and every tool over the past two months.

Two weeks ago a job posting came into my inbox since I'm subscribed to several job alerts, and I ended up putting in four applications, all with the city. Three are part-time and barely pay over minimum wage, but the benefits are good. I would be over the moon to get my foot in the door at one particular organization, so my fingers are crossed. I'm told that having to start over at the bottom when moving between countries is a common experience. Good thing I'm not materialistic, eh? Now I can more than relate to those newcomers whose degrees went to waste as they drove taxis and learned to spin pizza dough in the air. Sigh.

What are you doing of late? Have you adjusted to online teaching? 

Oh, speaking of that, don't miss my list of African Canadian history links on the links page. You may also be able to use the abridged story of the life of Josiah Henson that I put together, carefully grading the language for use with CLB 3 or 3/4 and above. You will note that it was to be part of a series of profiles; that plan was taking shape before I made the decision to move.

Take good care!