Life Update 50

I’m so behind on posting what’s going on here, I’ve been having trouble knowing where to start. So, I thought I’d just start with the biggest thing and see what I have time for after that.


As some of you are aware, I moved to Washington, DC (ok, technically Gaithersburg, MD) a little over a year ago for work. Well, we’re moving again, this time to Orlando, FL. I’ll be starting this fall as an Assistant Professor of Digital Media at the University of Central Florida.

The academic job search is pretty unique and as it’s been where the majority of my free time has gone this last year, I thought I’d explain it for those who aren’t familiar. Most everyone wants their professors to start around the new school year, so most of the jobs get posted between September and December the year before (so yes, I was applying for a new job 2 months after starting this one!) Each job generally requires a cv (which is a 10+ page resume but which fortunately you only have to write once), a 1-2 page statement of teaching, a 1-2 page statement of research, and a 1-2 page cover letter explaining why you’re a good fit for that particular institution. Each of these is personalized for the position you’re applying for. A lot of it is reusable, but it’s a 4-8 hour process for each job you apply to (and those first few are much, much longer). I finished my last application at the end of January.


These guys are at one of the mini-golf courses near where I’m moving.

Then there are the phone interviews. Those start in December, and run until as late as April depending on the school. From there, if you make it to the next step, they will fly you to a 2-3 day on-site interview where you give one or two talks and meet approximately a bajillion people. These run from February to May/June. Offers go out sometime after that.

I tell you all this mostly because holy CRAP that was a lot of work and basically the most drawn out process ever. I applied to 22 places, had phone interviews at 7, got invited to 3 on-site interviews, and accepted the first offer I got because I thought it was a great fit and didn’t feel the need to wait to see if anyone else would give me an offer.

We are moving in the middle of next month, and I flew down a few weeks ago to find a rental. I was able to find something the last day (phew!) and it’s less than 5 miles from work. I am in huge, huge denial about having a grown-up job and also that I’m moving to a new state that is even hotter than my current one. And also that I have to do that whole packing and moving thing. Again. At least we barely unpacked from our last move.


I’ve been playing a lot of “I won’t miss this, but I will miss this.” Current high scores for “I really, really, really won’t miss my 1.5 hour commute (each way),” but “I will really, really, really miss the beautiful land our rental is on.” (Check it out, this fox came to visit us yesterday!)

This post is incredibly babble-y, but I’m feeling a bit lost at the moment. So much in flux, and a lot of exciting and scary things are looming in front of me. One step at a time, and I will get there.


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50 thoughts on “Life Update

  • piecefulwendy

    Congratulations on your new job, and your anticipated move! I’m somewhat dazed and amazed just reading your post 🙂 it’s alot of really good things but also alot of overwhelming things. Just do the next thing, and then the next, and soon you’ll be there!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you! I have made lists upon lists to try to keep it all “out there” so nothing falls through the cracks. I tend to do things without really thinking about the consequences too much [to a point – I’m a law abiding citizen who is afraid of physical harm.] That helps me get through scary stuff but also leads me into situations where I’m like “whoooaaa wait a secondddd. How did I end up here??!” hahaha

  • Whiskers

    Remember to B R E A T H E!

    Love the pix and looking forward to the details. Keep your cool (she said where it was 95+ today, but not the same for humidity).

    • anne Post author

      I’m going to add “breathe” to my to do list, one second! (I’m only half-joking!)
      I think I’m going to have to come to terms with wearing sleeveless things and shorts/skirts given the heat!

  • Andie D

    Congrats on the move! I moved from Germantown (used to work at the Rio Center in Gaithersburg!) to Orlando. We lived a couple miles from UCF. We’ve since moved from Orlando and I miss it. Orlando is a great town.

    • anne Post author

      Oh wow! I go to Germantown from time to time. 😀 I actually live in Laytonsville but I know no one outside the area knows where that is. Did you live in Oviedo when you were in Orlando? We’re going to be living about halfway between UCF and Full Sail off of University. I keep hearing great things about Orlando, so I have high hopes!

  • handwroughtquilts

    Have fun when you can during the move process and remember you’re moving for better things. I hear Orlando is pretty awesome; it is also home to an online-friend, Jen of Cakewrecks and Epbot fame. Check her out, maybe you can be friends in real life!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you! I will attempt to find fun during the move process, but I do not hold high hopes for it. lol I will totally check out Jen! I’m familiar with Cakewrecks, but not Epbot. Thank you for the heads up!

  • Iris Penwarden

    I would miss that fox big time! but such an accomplishment for you to get to this next phase of your professional career. Congratulations, and may angels (or helpful friends) speed your packing and moving and goodbyes and ….

    • anne Post author

      We have a groundhog and deer and bunnies and birds and basically I am so sad I’m going to have to leave this yard behind. Hopefully our new home will have some animals that come visit as well. 🙂 I’ve never felt like I was on a career path before, so it’s weird to be taking steps towards one finally. Here’s hoping I don’t get bored and end up changing focus…again. Haha!

    • anne Post author

      Thanks, Leanne! I feel fortunate that I was able to find a position! I know some people who went through all that and didn’t get a position due to various reasons. Here’s hoping I don’t melt in Florida. 🙂

    • anne Post author

      The thought that I’m going to be close enough to go home for lunch or go grab something I forgot is kind of blowing my mind a little. I am SO ready to leave this commute behind!!

  • Karen Elizabeth

    congratulations on your new position. I spent a year in Orlando (1997). I was amazed how every afternoon at about 3:30 the sky would open up for 45 min to an hour for a deluge. Then it would vanish as quickly as it came. Lush and beautiful foliage everywhere you turn. A great place for launching grand adventures.

    • anne Post author

      Thank you! The rain thing happened when I was visiting, too! I hear it’s more common during the summer, but I guess I’ll find out. 🙂 I’m a big fan of rain, so I’m hoping that will carry me through the super hot summer!

  • Rebecca Weise

    Congratulations on your new job! All the hard work paid off! You are so talented and amazing! Your students will gain the biggest gift by gaining you as their professor! You kick ass, Anne! All my love and energy to you, sister!!!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you so much! <3 <3 I appreciate the vote of confidence. 😀 I fear the hard work has only begun, but I'm excited where this journey will end up taking me. ^_^

  • Stephanie

    Many many congratulations on your new job. It does sound rather fantastic. Meanwhile, having just moved myself and literally have had cable/internet installed and going through about 600 emails I can totally relate to your “flux”. Yes indeed one step at a time. Both you and I will get there. Sending hugs.

    • anne Post author

      Just the thought of dealing with all the moving logistics makes me exhausted! Good luck with YOUR move and getting everything set up at your new home. 🙂 *HUG*

  • Elaine Theriault

    Anne – Congratulations on your new job! What a process to go through! That’s almost tougher than the job or so it appears. Having a real grown up job isn’t so bad especially if it’s in the field of your choice! Look forward to seeing you at QuiltCon – at least you won’t have to travel as far!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you, Elaine! I have heard horror stories of junior faculty work-life balance, so I’m hoping I have chosen wisely and have found a place that won’t destroy me. ^_^ I am super excited that this year’s QuiltCon I’ll be able to drive to! It’s only 4 hours away!

  • nan

    Congrats on your new job. That is a long process and I can barely bring myself to write my own 2 page resume while yours required so many pages. Since you are moving to Florida, does that mean you are making your way back toward California?

    • anne Post author

      Hahah well fortunately you end up having to work on your cv every couple of years, so there’s only 1-2 years of stuff to add. But blaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhh. Man I don’t want to do that process again any time soon!
      I would love to head back to CA eventually, but I’m not sure we’d ever be able to afford it. Maybe somewhere in the pacific northwest, though?

  • Lori

    Congratulations, it sounds like you took on a part time job on top of your DC job to find a job! All that work and dedication shows your more than ready to take on whatever your new position throws at you, bet you’ll be great. Good luck with the move!

    • anne Post author

      Hahaha it was kind of like taking on an extra job, although it ended up bleeding into quite a bit of my job time. Oops. Thank you so much for the well wishes!

  • jules sontag

    A good life is just a series of ‘one step’ and then ‘one more step’ and you will *definitely* get there 🙂 I’m excited to see what new challenges, inspiration, and adventures will bring! Congrats on making it through what sounds like a grueling process leading to your new academic appointment. You rock 🙂 xo — Julie

    • anne Post author

      Thank you, Julie!! It’s already been a huge journey and I got through it by focusing on the steps instead of the destination. And now I’m here and I’m like “oh crap, what did I do?!?!????” HAhahahaah It’s in an art department though, so continuing my art practice is now part of my job. I just need to find out how much of what I do currently “counts” for tenure, and what new things I’ll “have” to do. 🙂

    • anne Post author

      Hahaha if you ever come visit me, we’ll make sure to drive the 30 minutes to the beach. 😀 Then we can say we’ve walked on beaches together on BOTH sides of the country!

  • dbcfla

    We in central Florida feel very blessed to have you close. The summers are longer by far but not as hot as it gets where you are. If you can get through the summer, it is heavenly the rest of the year. Did I mention, there will be NO snow shoveling? Look forward to having you near us. The Villages is about an hour from Orlando, and there are at least a thousand quilters here, many looking forward to having you near. You know who we are:) One thing at a time. Look at today’s list before you tackle tomorrow’s. It’s awful to move, but once it is over, the fun begins.
    BTW don’t bother packing wool sweaters.

    • anne Post author

      Thank you for the welcome Diane! So far I’ve really loved living here! I had a chance to hang out with Linda today who is also from the villages (and I’m guessing you know!) I am hoping to come visit during one of the quilt guild meetings out there, maybe in December when school is done. 🙂

    • anne Post author

      Hah! Look at your comment, totally pre-cognitioning the beesewcial theme before I even knew what it was. 🙂 The move was definitely incredibly stressful, but it was nice to have a little time off after the move!

    • anne Post author

      Thanks Yvonne! 😀 So far there’s a lot to love about being here, not the least being the short commute. Definitely a big departure from where and what I was doing before!

  • Susan hilsenbeck

    Congratulations! First faculty position is very exciting. Central Florida has some attractions and I don’t mean the whole Disney, universal thing. Archbold biological station is a biological gem.

    • anne Post author

      Thanks Susan! I’m definitely going to check out the Archbold Biological Station! I know there’s an Audubon Birds of Prey facility near me as well. I will definitely never run out of things to do here! 😀

    • anne Post author

      Thank you Rachel! It turns out that process was to make sure you could live through the process of being a new professor! lol I’ve never been so exhausted in my life!!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you! The move was fairly smooth (other than typical move stress) but there’s definitely been a few hiccups along the way. 🙂 Fortunately, we really love it so far!

  • MARY D

    Congratulations on your new job. Phew what a process! I love DC but also hated the 1+ hour commute when I contracted there last year. I hope you enjoy Orlando. Good luck with your move also. Find your best de-stressing activity and use it often. I like aromatherapy and world music.

    • anne Post author

      Thank you Mary! And thank you for the wonderful advice. 🙂 So far I really love Orlando and definitely do NOT miss the commute from DC! I think I need to start meditating again before my stress levels get back up to the unhealthy levels. 🙂

    • anne Post author

      Thank you Mary! The move went fairly smoothly (as smoothly as a multi-state move can go, anyway!) and I’ve started my new job! It already feels weird that I was scared of it in the abstract before, as of course now I have specific things about my job I can worry/be scared about. 😉

  • Jenn @ A Quarter Inch from the Edge

    How exciting to be taking on a new position in a new city! And that extra 3 hours you’re going to claw back in your day will be awesome. Though I am a little disappointed that you didn’t end up at one of the Nova Scotian universities that I pitched to you. 🙂 I feel like I’d be a membership rock star if I recruited you to our MQG!

    • anne Post author

      It turns out the 3 extra hours a day go to work. LOL So rude! Although I’m hoping once I’m past that initial “omgwtfamidoing” stage, I’ll be able to tone down the work and tone up the life a bit.
      I’m ALSO disappointed I didn’t end up in Nova Scotia!! It sounded amazing there! But they didn’t want to hire me, those big jerks! (OK, they didn’t have a job that I was a good fit for, not their faults. 😉 )

  • Cheryl

    Wow! Having gone through something similar (packing and moving) several times in the past two years, I know how stressful it all can be … add in the job process and well, you deserve a medal. I’m sure your students will love having such a creative influence thrust upon them! I love Florida (it’s my second home) – even during the summer months – but you may need a couple of those sweaters for the winter — your blood is going to ‘thin’ over time and temperatures less than 70F will send you running for one of those staples! Good luck with everything!

    • anne Post author

      Thank you Cheryl! Moving sucks, I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with it so much! And you’re right, I do love Florida! I will never be bored here. 🙂 AND I’ve already used a sweater a couple of times when I am sitting at home at night and the A/C feels just a tad too cold. At 74 degrees. LOL