Next Tuesday will be the first class of the spring semester. Yes, folks, I am wandering down the path of lifetime learning again. Some may remember my frustrations with my first semester of school. I felt that there was not enough time in my life for the many things I enjoy, nor was there enough time to commit to my little income stream. At that time, my intention was to take a course or two from then out.
Sometimes we need a step back in order to rethink strategy. In this particular case, that's what happened to me. I really wanted to continue in school. At the same time though, I wanted more time than I have had this last semester. Finally, I was not sure in which direction said education was taking me. I really did want to have it all. What to do, what to do............
I think I've come up with both a future plan and a workable retirement schedule in the process. In terms of timing and schedule, I've planned two at home (on my own time) type of classes and two traditional classroom forays. I like being in a school environment and neither art nor German classes take well to a web format, I expect. My two on campus classes are on the same day, with a reasonable time in between. This gives me five fully free days (at least free to choose my own path), and only one half day, twice a week with an actual physical commitment. this is much more workable for me.
On the goals front, after a month or so of thinking and planning (and lots of brainstorming with friends and family), I've come to a conclusion. I need to blend reality with my desires and interests. To that end, my new goal is first an associates and then a bachelor's degree in art. I know, in theory the employment outlook in this area is probably not stellar. In my case, though, I currently make (a little) money working in fabric and paper (quilting, sewing and card making). My goal is to expand those areas both for personal enrichment and in a business sense. Courses such as drawing, painting and printing will allow me to expand into the areas of fabric design and the like-not only that but I will be studying something I love. At this point in life, that's equally important. I'll keep a minor in German. Again, I love the language. While no one may hire me to go to Germany and be a translator at this late stage, it allows me to offer tutoring and translation locally.
I did have to think long and hard about this, but I believe it will work out. I have a few weeks to evaluate, and if I need to lower my "load" I can do so. I've enjoyed the break from school, but really need and enjoy the brain food. I just need said stimulation in lower amounts with more time to myself. I think I've managed that. In addition to school, I'm looking forward to a spring that includes many things. Landscaping the yard and spring planting, arts and craft fairs (and their preparation), lots of reading, and travel. These are but a few of the things I plan to enjoy this spring-all while learning about German syntax, line and perspective, ad how to cut a linoleum print.
Life as an adventure, after all.