Monday, November 29, 2010

I don't know how this happened, but I am going with it.

So, I have been holding steady at 275lbs since stopping all form of healthy anything and though not happy about that was at least relieved that the scale never went up. So imagine my shock and elation when I stepped on the scale this Monday morning (on a whim), after Thanksgiving weekend no less, and the numbers read 271.5!


I have no idea how that went down, but OK!

I have not had any soda since the 21st, so that could have something to do with it. YAY WATER!

so, that is all... happy me!

a sneaky peek at our 2010 3-Day Thank You card to our donors!

Classic Black Christmas
Get custom photo Christmas cards online at
View the entire collection of cards.

Disclaimer: I will receive a $25 gift certificate from for posting this preview of my card on my blog.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Mylynka - The Doctoral Student

So along with my ongoing quest to be fit y 40 I am in the middle of the process of getting my PhD in Transatlantic History. So far I have completed 2yrs of a Masters degree complete with a thesis on Marie Antoinette and her Image. I have just finished 2 yrs of doctoral classes and am now preparing for my Comprehensive Exams where I will be in a room for 3 days answering huge questions with nothing more than what ever happens to stick into my brain. It is daunting to say the least. The good thing is that recently I have set my committee of professors (3 who give me questions and 2 who are additional readers), set my topics/questions, and set the date.

So, beginning Monday Feb. 14, 2011 at 8am I will start day 1 of 3 of the written portion of the exams. I will choose one of my 3 exam fields (Cartography, Intercultural Transfer, Atlantic Revolutions) and will have 8hrs to answer the question given. The next two days I will do the other two fields. Thursday will be a day of rest before Friday. Friday is the oral exam! At 11am I will go into the conference room and all 5 professors ask me to defend my answers and answer more questions (usually there are 2 to choose from on the written and whichever you DON'T choose they ask you in orals.).

Yea, I am freaking out a little bit. I have about 12 weeks to get my readings together, get organized, and get to reading. I have really slacked off all semester and am glad my advisor made me set a date. It was the fire I needed lit under my booty!

So, Feb 14-18 I will be tackling the following:

Atlantic Revolutions:
1. What is the field of "Atlantic History" and how is it useful to historians of the 17th, 18th, and early-19th Centuries? What are the criticisms/objections to this new field of history?
2. How did the Haitian Revolution impact the Atlantic World?
3. What is the "Age of Atlantic Revolutions"? How is it defined and what is its importance to Atlantic History?

Intercultural Transfer:
1. What is the difference between Atlantic and Transatlantic History? How does the field of Transatlantic History challenge the idea of traditional national history. What are examples of Intercultural Transfers in Transatlantic History?
2. How was travel and travel writing important to intercultural transfers? Are there gender differences in travel writing?

And for my Cartography exam I need to know all about the following:
1. The Cartography of Early Modern France, 1500-1800
2. The Nineteenth-Century exploration of the Upper Nile
3. The Dutch East India Company at the Cape (South Africa), 1642-1800

SO... If I drop off the Earth for a week at a time you know why!! :)

Next blog: The Dissertation

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Wow! What is THIS? A blog post.... from me?

Well, I have decided to keep on trucking. I fell off the Get-Fit-By-40 wagon, but realized it can be caught again. I fell into my usual routine of being REALLY gung-ho and all about it, for about 2 whole weeks.. ok maybe a few more. I made a some really great breakthroughs and got over my fear of being in a swimsuit. I got over my fear of being the only fattie in aerobics class. Then, I don't know what happened (well, I kinda do), but




I stopped eating healthy.

I stopped exercising.

I stopped believing I could do it.

About the same time as I stopped exercising, I began to freeze up about my doctoral exams. I was so worried that I would fail my exams and that fear paralyzed me. I was so afraid of failing my exams that I couldn't even open my books and notes and get started studying. I pretty much stopped doing everything. I should have just kept blogging - it IS cathartic and therapeutic (for me) and I do get a boost from your comments, advice, and cheers!

SO, Now what?

My original plan was to be in a really good place for the 2010 Holidays. By that I mean that I thought by now I would be "used" to eating healthy and in an exercise routine so I could better resist the holiday temptations and over-indulgences. But hey, there is no time like the present and who says I HAVE to overeat? So, I am heading into the "holiday season" with an open mind and the word "moderation" on my lips.

And about those exams, I am back on track... but that will be the next post.