Wearing Grandma's Love おばあちゃんの愛を身にまとって

Loren's Grandma has sewn this white shirt and white skirt for me.
She is 84 years old and has been living with the Parkinson's disease for a long time. She cannot help to shake, and her fingers and hands changed their shapes due to arthritis. Yet, she made these for me.

Almost every day until they were done, she told me, "Come here." Thinking in my head, "Oh no, again..." but I was actually happy and appreciative. We repeated majoring parts of my body again and again. Towards the bottom of the skirt, it has a pink trim, and it's so cute. When I wear it, it makes me feel pure and feathery. She calls me, "That's my dolly."

A long time ago, Grandma wanted to be a seamstress, but she could not go to a school for that because her parents did not agree. So she self taught. She told me that she used to sew every night when her husband was working (he was a police officer, and he had to do a patrol at night).

Loren took this picture when I was being excited to wear it for the first time in Grandma's room.

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Praxis Tests プラクシステスト

I am living a life that has been far away from my blog.
How are you doing?
The year of 2008 has entered its third month.
Spring is approaching.
I hope you will have a wonderful season in which you can feel new breeze and overwhelming joy that cannot be held inside of you.

There are several reasons why my blog has been "abandoned" for awhile. But as I try to write all of them or some of them, I don't quite feel "right" yet. So I am just waiting until these things will tell me, "Now, you can write about us." Actually, the reality is that there is not really a moment to think, "All right, I am going to write a blog today."

Meanwhile, today, I felt a slight urge to write, so I am going along with that, though there is nothing special to write about.

Well, I am studying for Praxis tests that I am going to take this coming Saturday. The test will be held from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm (long day!) I hope I will wake up and won't be late.

This Praxis tests are required to take in order to get a teaching license. Even if you attain a four-year degree in education, you won't be hired at public schools without passing them. They are important. Interestingly, the testing date overlapped with this intense period of time. I barely made myself ready for the testing. At this point, there is not much I can do, so I would suggest myself to relax and enjoy. I will just do my best, and all the rest will find their way around. According to my dad, he used to play a day before his test instead of studying. In this way, he could relax his mind, body, and feelings, so that he could do well on the test. And he always passed tests doing this way. I am not as daring as he could be, so I will be probably going over my notes, making sure I got pencils and an erase a couple of times and checking my alarm clocks a couple of times a day before my test. Maybe, I hope that I could jump in the ocean for even five minutes... (I have not been to the ocean for a month and half. Does this tell you how busy I am? :)

Oh well, life is too short to be overwhelmed. I better enjoy it. Good luck to myself and all the people who are taking the tests.

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What was the Previous Post about? 一つ前のブログの記事は一体何だ?

I imagine that a lot of you thought, "What is she talking about?" when you read my previous posting titled, "“How do you plan to use the Microsoft products to enhance your productivity?”

About three months ago, my computer started to act strangely, and after countless trials to fix the problem, a customer service center at DELL and I had to give up. We came to a conclusion to reset my computer to a day-one status which meant to bring my computer's setting to the way it was when I purchased.

This mean that I had to let go all the softwares I had downloaded in the past two years, such as Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Office. I could easily let go of Adobe Photoshop since I did not use it so often as well as other "free" softwares such as Google Earth, Skype, Adobe Reader, printer drivers, Mozilla Firefox, and iTunes because I could download and install them again. The saddest part of all was to give up on Microsoft Office. Without it, I cannot use Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Publisher, and other useful features that I often use for my work and college assignments.

However, quickly, I found Microsoft Office 2007 Trial. I downloaded it and installed it, and I had about 60 days to use it for free. I loved using Microsoft Office 2007 Professional. It is the most recent version of the Microsoft Office system, and many features were improved, and it was easy to work with.

About a week ago, the trial expired. Since I have been very busy, I totally forgot that it was going to expire, so the day when it expired, I desperately looked for an alternative. I tried to download OpenOffice.org which is an office application suite available for a number of different computer operating systems. It supports the OpenDocument standard for data interchange as its default file format, as well as Microsoft Office '97-2003 formats, among many others. But for some reason, it did not work out. Then, as I researched on the Internet, I found out about CostCaptain.com which provides Microsoft Office softwares at student-friendly prices. For example, you can buy Microsoft Office 2007 Professional at $179.99 with shipping at CostCapitan.com whereas you will have to pay $499.95 at Microsoft's Official website.

I decided to go with CostCaptain.com, and I ordered one, and it lets you install on two computers or on one computer twice (in case your computer crashes). I thought that it was a pretty good price although anything more than $100 is a lot to me at this point of my life as a student. Well, necessity knows no law, right?

As I purchased one, there was a way to save $10 from your purchase. All you had to do was to write how you are planning to enhance your productivity with Microsoft products on your blog. If you are lucky, you could even win an iPod nano or Apple iPhone. So, I did. So, you can now see why I was all of sudden talking about Microsoft products on my blog.

Ironically, the next day, I found out that University of Hawaii sells Microsoft Office 2007 Professional at a half price ($89.99). Well, their products allows you to install only once, so actually, UH and CostCaptain.com are selling it at the same price. But, I did not know if I really needed to have two opportunities. And, again, it makes a big difference financially to pay $180 or $90, so I canceled the order I placed at CostCaptain.com and went ahead and got myself UH's product. CostCaptain's services were very nice, and they answered my questions promptly and in a kind manner. So, I decided to keep the previous posting to advertise for them. If you are looking for a Microsoft products, I recommend you to buy it from CostCaptain.com, and if you are a UH student and has a student ID number, you may try UH Bookstore.

Anyhow, that's what has been going on :)

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そんな中、最近の忙しさに感けて(かまけて)いるうちにお試し期間が切れることを切れる当日まで覚えておりませんでした。有効期限が切れた日、私は必死に解決策を模索しました。まずはMicrosoft Officeと高い相互運用性を備えていつつ無料というOpenOffice.orgをダウンロードしようとしました。しかし、何故かそれは上手くいかず、その後にCostCaptain.comという会社が学生のためにマイクロソフト社の商品を安く売っていることを発見。例えば、マイクロソフトオフィス2007をマイクロソフトの会社のウェブ上で買おうとしますと$499もします(5万円弱)。しかし、CostCaptain.comでは$179(2万円くらい)で買えるのです。まぁ、何であれ一万円以上するものは学生である私には痛い出費ですが、まぁ要る物は要る物。背に腹は変えられぬと思って清水の舞台から飛び降りるつもりで(っていうのはウソですが)購入を決断。


注文している際に、自分のブログ上にどうやってどうやってマイクロソフト社の商品を使うことによって生産力をあげるかについて書くと$10割引きになるのと、ラッキーであればアップル社のiPhoneかiPod Nanoが当たるということで、それで一つ前のブログの記事は書かれたわけであります。

ところがCostCaptain.comで注文した翌日に皮肉なことに、私の通っているハワイ大学がマイクロソフトオフィス2007を$89で売っていることを発見!何とCostCaptain.comの半額ではありませんか。ハワイ大学の商品は一度しかインストール出来ないようになっているので、まぁ実際のところはCostCaptain.comとハワイ大学は同じ値段で売っていることになるのですが。しかしですね、私二回のチャンスはいらないわと思いました。一回分で十分だと。学生としてはですねこの差額の$90が大きいのですよ。なので早急にCostCaptain.comの注文をキャンセルしてもらってハワイ大学で購入しました。(購入する際に学生IDカードの提示をしなくてはいけません。)CostCaptain.comのサービスがとても良く、私の質問にも迅速に答えてくれたので好印象を受けました。なので以前の記事を消さずに置いておくことにしました。もし、学生さんでマイクロソフトオフィス2007を買いたいのでしたら、CostCaptain.comで購入するといいですよ。それからもしハワイ大学の学生さんでしたらBook Storeで買うのも一つの方法ですね。



“How do you plan to use the Microsoft products to enhance your productivity?”

I plan to use the Microsoft products to enhance my productivity by using the following Microsoft products for various purposes.
1) Microsoft Word – I will use Word to type my college papers. Also, I often use Word to type my blog entry in order to take advantage of the spell check function.
2) Microsoft Excel – I have been using Excel sheet to keep track of my expenses and income. I count up to every penny and complete a monthly summary each month. This way, I can visually see which area(s) of my expense need to be cut down.
3) Microsoft PowerPoint – Since I do my student teaching at an elementary school, I often make PowerPoint presentations to teach lessons. Children enjoy having visual aids as they learn new topics. Also, children use PowerPoint to create their own presentation on topics they are interested. PowerPoint definitely enhances children’s learning.
4) Microsoft Publisher – I use this to create my own business card, a flier to sell a car, a flier to find a roommate, and a postcard to greet them with seasonal greetings.
5) Microsoft PictureViewer – I use this to view my digital images. I compress and edit my pictures before I upload them onto my blog.

All the Microsoft products I have used have been helping me to be more productive in my personal life as well as in my professional life. I am thankful to these products and opportunities to have them. I am sure that there’re more Microsoft products that I do not know yet. I am willing to learn about them, so that my life will be even more productive.

I appreciate that CostCaptain.com has been providing Microsoft products that are student-friendly priced. This time, I’m purchasing a Microsoft Office 2007 Professional. I cannot wait to receive it!