Last night was the due date for my final project and when it was submitted by a team member yesterday afternoon, my semester was over. I'm a free woman for six weeks.
Back in August, this semester looked a little more than terrifying - I was registered for twelve credits (nine is the usual full-time load), starting a new internship that would need about 25 hours a week and TAing 10 hours a week for a topic I felt unbelievably unqualified for ("hi, let me grade your XHTML, but do not ask me what XHTML actually is").
But then it turned out to be a lovely semester - I really enjoyed three of my classes and didn't hate the fourth one.
I read dozens of great YA books and looked at hundreds of picture books. We held a mock Caldecott Committee (after four rounds of voting, we chose "We Are the Ship" as the winner, with "The Little Yellow Leaf" as an honor book, both books which I'm desperate to own because they are so beautiful).
I fell in love with David Wiesner and wordless picture books. I finally read something by S. E. Hinton. I was mesmerized by The Chocolate War.
I gave a 45 minute presentation on how to help Science Fiction readers find books that they'll enjoy. I wrote a mock grant application for a day-care story time sponsored by the local public library.
I had friends this semester. I walked into classes knowing people and I walked out knowing more. I knew the professors and the TAs.
I now have 28 credits of graduate work (or I will when they post my grades next week).
Next semester I'll be doing a practicum in a public school library somewhere in Austin. I'll be taking School Library Management. I'll be doing the Notable Book project again.
I'll also be keeping both of my jobs . . . and adding another 10 hour a week TA job (because I am one of those people who cannot say no to money and jobs).
And hopefully in May, I'll be writing again saying how much I loved the semester and that I wouldn't change a thing even if I could.
Goodbye, Fall 2008. Thanks for being so good to me.