Starts and Stops

Once again, I’m feeling the drag of J’s advisor halting progress.  What do you do when you can only get your advisor’s attention for 15 minutes a week and they won’t write your rec letters or even let you know they haven’t done them yet? J’s feeling pretty sheepish, as his (now) top choice asked for letters probably two weeks ago, and we’re still not sure she’s got them all.  He had to send her an email making sure she got them, because his letter writers won’t respond to his emails about whether or not they will/have written them.  Grrr.  But– it was the end of finals week last week, so I should have patience.  I just hate to see him get down about it.  Things got exciting for a few days and then shut down.

In other exciting news, our landlord has dropped another bomb on us.  In September, we had actual contact with him when our A/C went out and he casually told us he was thinking about using our home as leverage in a custody battle.  “I figured I’d let my wife live here rent-free, and her lease is up in June.”  Yeah, only slightly horrifying.  Renters’ Rights in Arkansas are pretty grim, so we had a huge garage sale and sold off maybe 1/3-1/2 of our belongings just in case he got even flakier and we got the boot.  The idea of moving and then having to move again in 6ish months was horrifying.  We decided to get lighter.

Before that  there was talk of him selling the house, which was OK since our neighbors were interested (and intent on keeping us as tenants).  That fell through when the divorce started and he never returned their calls (after they had already paid for home inspections).  J. says we’re probably good because nothing moves fast and the landlord is flaky, but I don’t want to count on someone being flaky in a way that is beneficial to me.

Talk is back on about him selling off his properties, and luckily the neighbors are thinking about trying to buy the house again.  I got mad at J. last week for seeming to be cavalier about our possible eviction, but he was just way too stressed/depressed by the rec letter quagmire.  Can we just get out really soon?

The current plan is finish the thesis in March, defend in April, all done by May.  And somewhere in there find a job.  I don’t know what I can do at this point but be optimistic.  This blog has helped that last bit dramatically.

In happy-go-lucky news, I had a kick-ass birthday party on Friday that made me forget about my birthday blues earlier in the week.  Here are some pictures, taken by my photographer friend:

My amazing sis-in-law

I love how I look like a tarty cherub in this shot.
Our bathroom has really good light, so eventually everyone came in for some group shots.

Detail of decorations

We forgot birthday candles, so Jonathan obliged with his lighter.

My sis and her new boyfriend. It was hard to find the cutest picture, because they are disgustingly wonderful together.

All in all, it was the best party I’ve ever had.  My sis-in-law and best friend helped me deck the house out in pink streamers and aqua Christmas balls and decorate a corner just for photos (seen above).   There was a glitch in the karaoke system (namely a microphone and amplification) but we remedied it with a hairbrush and really enthusiastic singing.   The rest of the night was taken up with Framboise floats and photo shoots and chocolate tort.  No one got sick. No one got sad. Everyone got hugs. Then everyone went home.

2 Comments on “Starts and Stops”

  1. Eileen says:

    Glad the birthday party was fun! Your pics are so cute. (And I've been loving all the crafty pics too). And since this is the internets, here's some unsolicited advice. 1. re: the landloard–does the lease say anything about termination by either party? Ours has a lot of detail on that, but we're in NY and renters' rights are pretty good here. 2. Does your husband's university have a letter dossier service? It would require having all the letter writers write another, general letter, which isn't great, but then he (and you) could be certain that the letters went out because the advisor would no longer be involved.

  2. a. b. says:

    Unsolicited advice? Heck, that's why I started my blog. Coincidentally, my top two Facebook status keywords are "anyone" and "know". We don't have a lease. We've been there for 5 years and are just month to month, which was great until things weren't. Arkansas renters' rights give 30 days, and that's it.As for the dossier service (spelled it soddier first) I'll ask him. He's so much more patient than I am, but this is the most stressed I've seen him in a long time.

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