The new semester has begun … this is number 8 … but it was difficult to tell. This is the first semester of my PhD journey in which I have no classwork commitments – my focus is solely on my dissertation proposal defense. I’ve been meeting with my chair every month and January was no different. I’m still pushing to have my proposal defense completed by the end of the semester. Tomorrow is the first day I’ll be using the spiffy new dissertation room in the Arlington library – woohoo! (That’s as close to “shiny and new” this semester is bound to bring!) Onward and upward!