Friday, January 29, 2010

January "To Do" List

  • SAVE! - Done
  • Bank stuff:  open second back-up checking account, link accounts, request balance statements - Done
  • File 2009 taxes - Done
  • Apply for NZ visa - Done
  • Mirena check-up and annual exam - Done
  • Change W-2 withholdings - Done
  • Give professional notice of resignation - Done :-(
  • Inventory all stuff already in storage - Done
  • Sell bike, stereo, old backpack, old hiking shoes - DONE
  • Figure out how to lock up backpack - Done
  • Spend time with family - Done
Days until departure:  30

Friday, January 22, 2010

Blueberry Buckle

My parents' backyard in South Jersey isn't really a yard--it's a few acres of wild blueberry bushes.

This past July, I picked about 2.5 gallons of wild blueberries.  That's alotta blueberries!

After six months, I still had about a gallon of frozen blueberries left.  Blueberry cornmeal waffles and blueberry tea just wasn't going through them quickly enough.

Enter stage left:  Blueberry Buckle, the best dessert on the planet.

Click the link below for the recipe.  Yummmmm...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Goodbye, Buses

In November 2006, I began employment as the Service and Operations Analyst at Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit, Inc. (TCAT), which is the public transit agency for the Ithaca-Tompkins County area.

Tomorrow, our Human Resources Manager will announce to the administrative staff that I will resign, effective Friday, February 19.

When I was hired, I expected to spend most of my time on spreadsheets, crunching ridership and operational statistics to help TCAT make better business decisions. In reality, I spent the last three years working on an assortment of transportation planning, project management, technology, and public outreach functions, and oh yeah, a bit of statistics, too. Essentially, I was allowed to do nearly anything I felt inspired to do, whether "necessary" or just "cool," even if it wasn't in my job description (as long as I finished the work actually outlined in my job description).

What an awesome privilege and responsibility to give to a 24 year-old starting her career.

Remember that one time someone put a "For Sale" sign on the amenities truck? Who was that?

It's exhausting, though. At a systematic level, there are never enough resources to cover all needs. On a personal level, I do believe that TCAT plays a vital role in my community. At TCAT, I feel a sense of reporting not to our General Manager, nor to our Board of Directors, but to our ridership. With 3.35 million boardings a year, that's a daunting task.

It's made more daunting by the timing of my departure. Without going into too much detail, there were things I wanted to do at TCAT in 2010, namely to wrap up phase II of our farebox development and to analyze the effects of TCAT's new routing on ridership patterns.

So, in summary: I am inspired, thankful, exhausted, and not completely ready to leave.

Click the link below for the secret to loving your job!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

What a Difference

What a difference a few months makes!



Winter (Yesterday):

The ice has made its way up the inlet and now reaches past our dock. I think it's snowed at least a little every day so far this year.  It's averaged 18 F/ -8 C, with a low of 8 F/ -13 C.  It hasn't gone below 0 F/ -18 C yet, though!

Temperatures in the teens are ideal for cross-country skiing, so this weekend I made sure to bring my skis up to the trail behind the house.

Very nice!  Looks like I wasn't the first to have the idea.  I enjoyed the single track up to Glenwood Heights Road.  Too bad I'm working during pretty much all daylight hours this week--I need to enjoy the snow and cold weather while I can, before my two years of endless summer!