And it’s back to work I go
Today is my last day off. Not quite a day off either, more of a day to get ready. While classes haven’t officially started for me, it’s time to get some work done. So in the spirit of chronicling my life as a PhD candidate, I figure today we can take a look at my todo list and you’ll see why today isn’t a day off. Hint, there’s a lot of prep going into this next week.
Today I’m dragging, not going to lie I slept in and still feel like I could sleep the day away. All that woodworking is catching up to me I guess. Unfortunately I need to get things together for this week so I have to just push through it a bit. The week will be slower than a normal week for me so I’ll have chances to rest sprinkled inbetween.
Tomorrow for example, I need to take the car into the mechanic to get it fixed. Normally I try to do all the repairs myself for lack of funds, but this is beyond my abilities to fix (namely I don’t have the tools to do the repair or diagnostic). I’m anxious to see how much it will cost and how long they will need the car because I’m broke and I’ve already had several bills coming, one really big bill to replace a leaking door in my home.
The problem is I already committed the money to replace the door before the car decided to break on me. It’s bad… yet, but I want to get it fixed since it’s my only way to get around. Since the amount to fix the car is could be anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand I’m anxious to get a quote on the repair. Worst case I guess would be they determine the problem and if it’s something I can do myself I’ll do the fix. The last big issue with the car was a transmission issue and that was something the dealer had to get involved to fix, so not looking forward to this one.
I have another meeting tomorrow with my Co-PI to discuss the R21 grant I’m writing. We want to collect some more data using my “super secret” technique from several different people (3-4) before we submit it. Since this is super exploratory we need to have a lot of the boxes ticked to show this works so we’re meeting tomorrow to discuss the experimental design and start scheduling the experiments. We’re also going to attempt to meet with my main-PI to discuss my other grant and to formally propose this other grant to him. It will be an interesting meeting and I hope that it will go well, but it could definitely be akward.
I’ve also been asked to modify some solidworks parts this week. It’s a quick job, but I’ve put it off for a week so I’ll probably just do it today and get it over with. I was just trying to get the most out of my time off, so it’s not a huge issue. The parts are complex and I didn’t get the full file so it will require a bit of wrangling to get the parts to display properly so I can do the work.
Then there’s my writing projects. Besides the daily blogging, I have the R21 grant, two journal papers, and a personal project (the uncharted book chapter) that I need to get done. The R21 has a set date so I need to really get that done. The personal project I’ve committed to get my revisions done by the end of the month, so that’s a whole other blog post and I really need to hammer out a few hours a couple of days to get that done too. One journal paper my former PI was kind enough to offer reorganizing for resubmission and doing the first round of edits. I’m appreciative of that and I think he realizes how busy I am so that’s nice of him.
The second journal paper is what I need to have done before I can do my PhD proposal defense. I don’t need to do my defense anytime soon, I only need to do it the term prior to my PhD defense per the schools terms. So I could theoretically do it in a few years and still be on schedule to graduate, I just want to do it in the traditional order and timing so I’m trying to do it soon. That means I really need to get this paper together and dive back into the data processing of the data that we collected last year. It’s not the thing that makes me excited, so I’ve been hesitant to do it, it will get done, it’s just not something I’m excited to do.
Lastly, I have my second dose of COVID vaccine! That will be nice to get done and one less thing I need to worry about. I’ll have to make a whole other post talking about that and the after effects, but the first dose went smoothly and aside from a bit of soreness I had no side effects that I noticed. Hopefully everyone will be able to be vaccinated soon, so fingers crossed. I’m thankful to be getting mine, but it won’t change my behaviors. I’ll still wear my mask everywhere, avoid crowds, wash my hands, not touch my face, etc. It just means I won’t have to worry about spreading the virus and that keeps the volunteers for our experiments safe since they are in an at risk population already.
So yeah, busy day to get things together for the next week. I should probably get started!