Monday, October 31, 2011

This clueless PC lover meets Siri, Apple's new robot

So, I have heard enough about this "Siri" feature on the new iPhone 4S. I had to YouTube it to see what all the fuss was about, and this is what I found:

I think we are officially one step closer to Sonny from I, Robot.

It's kinda freaky, kinda cool.

I think this is somewhat a waste of time. I find I spend much more time in my life waiting to responses from texts when I could have originally just called someone to ask them a question, but honestly, sometimes I just don't want to bother talking to people. That's really sad, but sometimes I'm really tired! Haha....OR there's a good song on the radio! I mean, I don't text while I drive.

This feature IS however a FABULOUS idea for the visually impaired!!! I'm going to bring the idea up to my brother and see what he thinks. He uses his Blackberry right now but, I honestly think it's a huge waste of an unlimited data plan if you ask me because he still calls 411 all the time- which ain't free, Pat!

I keep seeing things on "upgrading your Apple operating system" & stuff of the sort. Anyone wanna fill me in on what the heck that means? I have an iPhone 4 but does that mean I can upgrade my operating system on my phone?? Is it free?? What's it do for me if I upgrade?? I am so Apple clueless. Give me my Windows PC all day long but I LOVE my iPhone.  {I realize I can Google these questions but it's my bed time!}

My one suggestion for the iPhone is: BUTTONS! I miss my buttons on my Blackberry. I have not mastered the touch screen. My fat fingertips just keep typing the wrong letters all day long! It's pretty frustrating.

Honestly, SOMEtimes I wish I could downgrade to an old flip phone and not have the worry or obligation to constantly check emails, Facebook, etc. But come to find out, that would be a bad idea now that Verizon no longer has an unlimited data plan. I'm grandfathered in, which basically means I need to keep it for life. I am finding myself becoming more technologically challenged and wanting to make life simpler instead of high-tech.

But what do I know? I'm a loser who goes to bed at 10pm on Halloween night. :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

What would you do if...?

So, without going into detail as to why I am asking this, I am wondering...

If you were diagnosed with cancer, what about your life would change?

Would you eat better?
Work out more?
Right your wrongs?
Cross things off your bucket list?
Give up?
Search for God?
Get angry?
Get your affairs in order?
Go buck wild?

No really, what would you do?

{It's something to think about.}

Becoming an LPCA....

Can I just tell you how anxious I am to become an LPCA? I am so over the licensing board & their stupid timelines and requirements. Since July, they've made all applicants complete a Jurisprudence Exam. It's basically an online test of laws & statutes that relate to the counseling field. Let me just tell you- that was a $45 waste of time. You have no way to prepare for this exam, as the link to the board's webpage doesn't work. So you're basically best guessing your answer to these 55 questions, and after you're done, you have to "re-take" the questions you missed the first go-round. You basically keep answering the questions until you've got them all right and can print a Certificate of Completion. Are you kidding me? Seriously, this is a requirement for LPCA licensure!! That is so annoying and inconvenient and seriously a waste of $45.  Since I'm not licensed yet, I don't have $45 to waste on money-making requirements for a board that won't answer their telephone!

Can you tell I'm frustrated?

I am not nearly as frustrated about it as I seem, but is that not stupid?! I would be more frustrated if I wasn't approximately four weeks away from becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor- {Associate.} Provisional or not, I'll be able to have clients, do therapy, do clinical evaluations, and sign "LPCA" beside my work-related signatures. :) I am pretty excited about it!

Until then, I had Alex basically kill all my hopes & dreams of ever shopping again and work out a hardcore budget to last me until I get a raise for the rest of my life.  It's going to be hard but going to be SO worth it. It's so discouraging to have a personal conversation with homegirl at CFNC and extend your 10-year student loan(s) to 25 years just so it'll be under $800 A MONTH!!! Seriously, I don't know if my education is worth all that. All I know is I better love counseling and do it for a long, long time.

I think I might. :)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Sweet Surprises

Seriously, this is so unlike my life- but I have felt the love lately!! I have felt so blessed, surrounded by such positive, uplifting, encouraging people in my life. I recently talked about my girlfriends, but today I want to give a shout out to my fabulous co-workers.

As you probably know, I passed my NCE (National Counselors Examination). That was a Friday & I took the day off of work to take my test in the morning and to head to the mountains for one of my best friend's weddings.

Well, Monday morning when I got to work, this was on my desk:
That in itself was so nice of them to do! I felt so happy seeing that. Everyone congratulated me and we went out to lunch to celebrate me passing the NCE and a co-worker's birthday! It's not often most of us get to take off work for an hour, together, so that was nice! Then at the end of the day I got a surprise!
Some nice-smelling goodies from Bath & Body Works & a card signed from everyone in the office!!

Seriously, how sweet is that?! I am so blessed to work with such great people.

I often whine & gripe about things that annoy I thought I would take this time to remind people that there are nice people left in thsi world...and I am lucky enough to get to work with them!! :) Thank you, Lord!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

My test is OVER!

Update on my test:
I PASSED!!!!!!

Seriously that was one of the most stressful things. I hadn't had some of these classes in over two years. I had eight sections of counseling material to study, and no time to do it in. I think in the week I had to study (super long time) I actually spent maybe four hours studying total. I know, I know. I suck at studying! It was just all super boring material that doesn't all even necessarily relate to actual counseling, which is not encouraging! Plus I knew I was taking Friday off work & had to flex my time at work that week, so by the time I got home, worked out (one day), tanned (wedding weekend was coming- can't be pale!), ate dinner, took a shower & got ready to study I was flat out tired!! {You see I have my priorities in line.}

But I woke up at 6AM Friday, showered, and headed to Charlotte in hopes of having enough time to get where I was going {if you know me, you know I got lost} and last minute study/cram before my 9AM test. I have Rosenthal's The Encyclopedia of Counseling to thank for educating me on all things counseling. The "Boot Camp" Study Guide in the back of the book is what I read in the H&R Block parking lot, and thank God I did!! I didn't have time to finish the book (in the times I have spent studying for both the CPCE and the NCE) and that study guide informed me of things that most definitely helped me with a number of questions on the exam! 

The exam was 200 questions and lasted me about 2 hours & 15 minutes. It was brutal! The kicker was only 160 questions counted and 40 questions were "trial questions" for the test-makers to see how well test-takers do on them & possibly use them on future NCEs. But anyone taking the NCE has no idea which questions count & which ones don't! So, the point is to do your best on all of them. Please just imagine me eenie-meanie-miney-mo'ing some of those questions, then praying it's one of the 40 that doesn't count. It was so stressful!

I was also super thankful that the test was electronic. The CPCE (the practice NCE) was paper-based and it took like 6 weeks to get our results back. That was stupid. So, when I finished taking my test Friday, I got to see my results immediately! 

Basically, if I didn't pass this test, it would take me so much longer to get licensed (and get a much needed pay raise) and I would have to pay another $200 to re-take the test. I could NOT fail this test!

I had so much support from family and friends. I could not be more thankful for that either! Everyone kept telling me that they had faith in me, that I would do great, etc. but the best thing I heard was, "All you have to do is PASS!"

That is so true. I don't need a good grade. Nobody needs to know how well I scored. Nobody cares about my score. I just have to pass the test!! That was such a relief in itself. 

Just so you know... you have to get 91 of the 160 correct. Depending on how you look like it, that's only 56% correct. On the other hand, you have to get NINETY-ONE QUESTIONS CORRECT. Bluh! 

But I did it.
It's over!
I don't have to stress out about it anymore.
And in four weeks I am going to have my scores sent to the LPC board and they will license me and I will be an LPCA and get to start doing what I actually went to school to do!!

I am still so thankful for all the support, love, & prayers!! Love you all!!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Saturday I am thankful for: Girlfriends

I've really enjoyed my day. I slept in this morning, had some yummy leftovers to eat, caught up on Grey's Anatomy, and I think after that is when the cleaning fairy possessed my body. I basically took the entire refrigerator apart, washing every piece, and organized everything. A feeling of accomplishment set in after that was I headed to the bathroom to clean my shower & toilet (weird) and then put all my clothes away & did laundry. On my "day off!!" I don't know what overcame me....but it was a definite possession. A nice hot shower snapped me back into reality & my laziness kicked in while I painted my nails & watched a Lifetime movie with Mom. There are some seriously hardcore Lifetime movies coming out lately...and I must say that I don't think all the profanity is necessary, Lifetime.

Luckily, my friend Erika was free for dinner & spent probably two hours in that Mexican restaurant, just chit chatting about all things life. I sure am thankful that girl is in my life! Now here I am, with the Encyclopedia of Counseling in my bed with me, just having consumed the yummiest Reese's Blizzard from Dairy Queen, and about to start studying for my test Friday.

Y'all know I don't want to study. So I am opting to blog instead at the moment. Forgive me for being me & you can thank my talk with Erika for sparking this motivation of mine. :)

I just want to say shout from the rooftops that I am so incredibly thankful right now. I am at a point in my life where I feel like God is blessing me with amazing girlfriends. There was a time when I felt like all my girlfriends were too busy living their own life to even notice what I was going through. That's a crappy feeling, feeling like you don't have any or many girlfriends. I have "always" had my best best friends. Unfortunately my best best friends haven't lived in the same town as me since 2005. Luckily, these are relationships that have maintained and no matter how far they are, we still take time to talk, know what's going on in each others lives, and knowing we would always be there for each other if the other needed it. These are also girls that I could go months without talking to (but luckily don't) and the next time we talk, still be as close as ever. I consider these true friendships and I feel really blessed that these friendships have lasted over time, over distance, and over life circumstance!
my best best friends

Now, I have "my time in Hickory" to thank for creating some great friendships. I don't get to talk to these girls as often as I did when I lived on campus, but I still consider these girls wonderful friends and love love love catching up with them whenever I can! I also am extremely thankful to have such a lasting friendship formed with Mrs. Lindsey Jervis in the past couple years. I feel so honored to now be her children's GODMOTHER! Unfortunately I no longer live in the same city as any of my Hickory girlfriends or Lindsey. :( Stupid distance! Thank God for cell phones & Facebook!

But since I've moved home, I've got to grow friendships with some pretty awesome ladies. I really have Group 212 to thank for that mostly. I love making friends at church because you know that you are both there for a common goal and don't have to worry about those friends putting into tempting situations or surrounding you with negativity. I've really enjoyed getting to know these girls better and spending more time with them. It always seems like we have a good time, no matter if we're out doing something or if we're standing in some parking lot talking!
my girls

Now, last but certainly not least, I am feeling the love that I am surrounded with on a DAILY basis! I love my co-workers. I unfortunately don't have any pictures with them....yet! ;) They are so encouraging, positive, uplifting, helpful, and hilarious!! A great combo to have in someone you will spend most of your time during most of your days with. I am realizing more and more lately that great co-workers are hard to come by, and that just makes me feel more and more blessed!!

THANK YOU LORD for surrounding me with those who lift me higher :)
You know I need it bad
and You always give me what I need.

It's Test Time Again!!!

Hey guys! I've been completely missing from the blog world lately. I hate that because blogging is something I enjoy doing.

Can I just say that when I tell people that "I blog" or that "I have a blog" they make all kinds of fun of me. Do they now knot that blogging is in?!  I've been referring to my blog a lot lately for "things from the past" so I completely feel it's necessary to continue blogging as long as I want. :)

Now, I have some BIG news!! But here's a little background first.....

As you know, I started working for Support, Incorporated in September. I interned there this summer and LOVED it. I have really been blessed to work in such a positive place. But, until I'm licensed, I'm not really qualified to do anything there. So right now I am "Clerical Support" and basically help anyone with anything that I can. At first it was kind of slow but we are a growing company & I am a busy girl now!! :)

Well, to become licensed as soon as possible, I submitted all my necessary paperwork & money by September 9th, which was the deadline to turn everything in for the OCTOBER board meeting. Why they need it 3+ weeks early, I don't know, but I didn't question it. At this time I submitted my buttload of money to the NBCC (National Board of Certified Counselors) so that I can register to take the NCE (National Counselors Examination). They said that it'd be four weeks after they get your money before they will notify you that you are able to register to take the test. SERIOUSLY. Okay, so, four weeks to the day goes by & I get an email saying it's time for me to register to take my test! I immediately do what I need to do to register, and realize that they only offer the test during the first two weeks of every month. I found out on the 7th, which means that one week has already gone by!! Holy cow... 'kay, so I said a quick prayer & hoped that there would be availability THIS month for me to take my test....otherwise I'd have to wait until NOVEMBER, just to take the stupid thing!! Not to mention that it's 4-6 weeks after you take the test that your scores are sent to the LPC (Licensed Professional Counselors) Board.

Okay so here's the BIG news....I was blessed and was able to sign up on the ONLY day left that was still available....this coming up Friday!!!! So that means I have a week (from yesterday) to study for this darn thing! That's more than double the amount of time I had to study for the CPCE (the "practice NCE" I needed to pass to enter into my internship) so, I'm trying not to freak out. But this info is less and less on my mind now that I'm out of's been 2 years since I've had some of these classes, AND it's not like 99% of the information I'll need to know for this test will ever relate to ACTUAL counseling. Pretty frustrating!

So basically, this test is a big deal! It's all that {I'm aware of that} is standing between me getting licensed as a counselor!! Why do I care so much?? Well, because while I love helping everyone out at the office doing anything I can, I can't wait to do what I actually went to school to do! I can't wait to have clients who come to therapy on a regular basis, and get to see progress from them, and know that I made a difference!! That and the fat pay raise I'm going to get AND WILL DESPERATELY NEED to begin paying off those beautiful school loans that will be due in just one short month will not hurt either!!

So with all that said, please please please pray for me that I am able to focus and devote my time to studying this week. It's all the time I have & need to use as much of it as possible. And y'all know I'm not good at studying! My ADHD will kick in so quick....this is no joke! A lot is riding on the results of this exam. And pray for me that I don't fREAk OUt remembering that all week. And Friday, pray for me that I am a good guesser...because I have a feeling I'm going to be doing a LOT of "eenie, meanie, miney, moe"-ing. :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Problem With "Breast Cancer Awareness"

A friend of mine recently posted this quote from Wikipedia and it sparked some interest of mine. First of all, here's the quote:

"Promotion of the pink ribbon as a symbol for breast cancer has not been credited with saving any lives. Wearing or displaying a pink ribbon has been denounced as a kind of slacktivism, because it has no practical positive effect and as hypocrisy among those who wear the pink ribbon to show good will towards women with breast cancer, but then oppose these women's practical goals, like patient rights and anti-pollution legislation. Critics say that the feel-good nature of pink ribbons and pink consumption distracts society from the lack of progress on preventing and curing breast cancer. It is also criticized for reinforcing gender stereotypes and objectifying women and their breasts. Breast Cancer Action launched the "Think Before You Pink" campaign, and charged that companies have co-opted the pink campaign to promote products that encourage breast cancer, such as high-fat Kentucky Fried Chicken and alcohol."
As time went on, I thought about the quote more and more. I didn't really investigate the sources from the site. The quote kind of made a lot of sense. I personally have family who have been diagnosed and survived breast cancer. But a friend of mine also died from breast cancer- so it is something I am well aware of. However, I'm not a pink-boa-wearing female who runs in the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer or anything of the sort. Am I a bad cancer-hater? Should I be doing more? Am I obligated to raise "breast cancer awareness?"

I think the point of this quote was to say, "Wearing pink is for 'Breast Cancer Awareness'; however, people are aware breast cancer exists. We need to be raising awareness of the lacks of funds, lack of a cure, and working with each other to help those affected by breast cancer.  The 'Save the Ta-Tas' signs aren't really helping anything, unless all the money from that sign went to help fund breast cancer research."

And I agree {for the most part} but I will say that I truly appreciate any and every company that wants to give a percentage of their sales to the Susan G. Komen Fund, etc. during the month of October.  If I have a choice between a product I always buy, and the same product in a pink bottle, I'm going to buy the pink bottle and be glad that a percentage of that sale will go to actually help someone in need who has been affected by breast cancer.  I just hope that everything "pink" this month that is supposed to "raise breast cancer awareness" has an actual donation behind it in some way to help fund the research to cure or prevent the disease, or help someone that has been affected by the disease. Otherwise, shame on them!

While on Google searching for images of "breast cancer awareness" I found this site that accurately vents saying:
If you are female, you’ve probably had at least one message on Facebook saying something along these lines:
 ”Shh, don’t tell the boys but post your shoe size in inches, the number of weeks by multiplying your birthday with your starsign, how many seconds you think it would take you to get David Tennent naked*, where you like to keep your handbag, as your Facebook status and it will magically help promote breast cancer awareness.”
Cue the sound of sighing and the rolling of eyes.
Help promote breast cancer awareness? Really? How? We are not even supposed to tell half the population of the world – the men – despite the fact that they too can contract breast cancer. And the status updates don’t mention breast cancer. There are no links to websites where people can read more, no helpful information about how often one should check oneself, no, well, anything.
Here’s an idea, if you want to help fight against breast cancer click this link to the breast cancer site. There you can click a button which will give a free mammogram to someone that needs it.
And if you want to raise breast cancer awareness, try using the words breast cancer and following them with some useful information.
 Now THAT I also agree with!! I couldn't have said it better myself.

I wonder what your thoughts on the topic are. Feel free to share! :)

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