Almost a Month Into the New Job – And I’m Feeling Fine

Next week will mark Week 4 at the new job, and I can honestly say that I’m doing well. I haven’t royally messed up anything, and everyone seems to like me. Truth be told, the more I learn about the folks they historically had in place in the Executive Admin roles, the more I think that I could have walked in with HALF of my work ethic and be considered successful in their eyes. They had some pretty terrible admins. Shockingly terrible. It’s no surprise they got rid of them all and decided to start from scratch.

The job itself is not hard at all. There are many things that I now have “down pat” and don’t need to seek help on. There are others … continue on, dear reader!

MoviePass Pays Off

Back in September I posted about how I joined MoviePass for $10 a month. Well, it’s now almost four months later and I’m updating to say that I LOVE MoviePass so much that I recently opted to sign up for their annual pass, which reduces the cost to ~$7/month.

I know others have complained that their customer service is lacking, but so far I have no complaints. When I changed my membership to annual, I was accidentally charged twice, but I submitted a ticket and within 24 hours they refunded the duplicate charge. I’ve not had any issues checking into movies or not having the money on the MoviePass debit card to pay for my ticket. The app works seamlessly and is easy to understand. … continue on, dear reader!

A Week of Confidence and Panic Attacks

This week I started my new job with a brand new company and WOW was it a week of ups and downs. Tomorrow is Monday and I don’t know if I’m looking forward to it, or dreading it. I think both.

Tuesday, my first day, went well. It was basically an orientation day, meeting everyone, and learning the very basics of how they operate from an administrative perspective. We ended the day by diving a bit into the actual work I’ll be doing, but it was a shallow dive into lukewarm water at best.

Wednesday was my day to panic. We did a deep dive into cold water and WOW was it a long, hard day. There is SO much to learn in this new … continue on, dear reader!

My Books of 2017 List

It’s the end of 2017, and that means it’s time for my annual posting of the books I’ve read over the past year. This year I was smart – I vastly reduced the number of awful free Kindle books I read this year (compared to last year, which I consider to be “the year I read awful free Kindle books, which I shall never do again.”

On to the list!

TitlePrimary AuthorRatingDate Finished
Ready Player One: A NovelCline, Ernest52017-10-07
The NightingaleHannah, Kristin52017-01-10
A Man Called Ove: A NovelBackman, Fredrik52017-02-05
A Gentleman in Moscow: A NovelTowles, Amor52017-08-23
Before We Were Yours: A NovelWingate, Lisa52017-12-11
Britt-Marie Was Here: A
continue on, dear reader!

White Elephant 2017

This past weekend was our 19th annual White Elephant party – what a fun, fun time we had! As always, I’m posting to provide a list of the menu we served, so that we can refer back to it as needed in the future. We had a couple duplicates from last year, as well as our standard bruschetta, but we also made a lot of new stuff:

1) Shrimp & chorizo – GLUTEN FREE. This one is really easy and will definitely be back next year. Found on Pinterest, you literally just marinate some shrimp for a while, then wrap one around a slice of chorizo, use a toothpick to hold them together, and bake them until the shrimp is pink and cooked through. Easily … continue on, dear reader!

When The Time For Change Arises

Just over eight years ago I begrudgingly accepted a job offer after being laid off and subsequently slogging through 11 months of unemployment. It was tough accepting that job offer because of the drastic pay cut I would endure, but I remember still being a teeny bit excited since I had really felt an immediate sense of kinship with MH, the person to whom I would be reporting.

Little did I know that the kinship I felt with MH during the interview process would bloom into a wonderful friendship along with the working relationship, and that I would be inspired and challenged more in my new job than ever before in my career. MH never let me settle for being "just" an admin, and the … continue on, dear reader!

MoviePass Review

You probably read the headlines a couple months ago that Moviepass was reducing their passes to $9.95. I had heard of MoviePass a couple years ago, but figured it was a fad that wouldn’t last, so I did not pursue it. It wouldn’t have made sense at the time ($30 a month) considering the fact that Denis typically doesn’t go to the movies, and the kids were a bit young to see most movies that were in wide release at any given time.

Cut to 2017: CootieGirl is 14 years old and able to see a LOT of movies in wide release. The bonus? She loves going to the movies almost as much as I do. After reading a bit of the latest news … continue on, dear reader!

When You Want a Menagerie Again, You Get a Cat

A few weeks ago CootieGirl mentioned that she wanted a cat. We still have Mini the Cat and Dobby the Dog, but she said she specifically wanted a cat that cuddles and will be hers. None of our cats were ever cuddly "do whatever you want with me" cats.

"’Yours’ means you clean out the kitty litter, and feed the cat, and fill the water bowl."

"Okay," she said.

"You need to ask your father – he’s the one that has said no more pets."

A few days later she casually brought up the idea of getting another cat for the house – one that would be hers (as in, when she moves out, if the cat is still alive, she will take it with … continue on, dear reader!

Put On Your Not Fake Eclipse Glasses!

This past Monday was the solar eclipse in this country, and it swept across our very state, which was fun for the kids to experience.

In February 1979 there was a solar eclipse that came through Washington State, where I happened to live at the time. To be honest, I don’t remember much about that day – I was just shy of 10 years old and didn’t give a hoot about an eclipse.

But for 2017 I decided to try and make it memorable for CootieGirl and CootieBoy. A few months ago I reserved a parking spot at the SC State Fairgrounds in Columbia, SC. In early June I bought 5 pairs of eclipse glasses for $10 on Amazon. I told my boss I was … continue on, dear reader!

On Poomses and Perserverance

Eighteen months ago CootieBoy began taking taekwondo lessons. This week he tested for his red belt, which was momentous for several reasons.

First, it represented a commitment to TKD that has lasted much longer than I thought it would. Truly, when we first signed up, I figured he would keep his interest for a few months and then he’d want to quit. Then a year ago when his favorite instructor moved to Texas I thought he’d want to quit. But here we are, eighteen months later, and he is now just three belts away from reaching Black Belt. I’m so proud of him, and the hard work he puts into achieving each belt. No, he isn’t excited about going to every class (there are times … continue on, dear reader!

The 2017 Best Picture Movie Marathon

This year I bought a pass to attend a movie marathon with Regal Cinemas to see all the Best Picture nominees. Thus far I’ve seen 4 of the 9 nominees, with plans to see at least two more. The other three were either movies I had no interest in, or the show times just didn’t fit with my scheduler.
I talked a few women from my neighborhood book club into doing it with me, and we have all really enjoyed it. CootieGirl has also enjoyed it, as I got her a festival pass as well.

The first movie we saw was "La La Land," which I thoroughly enjoyed due to my love of old musicals. I also adore Emma Stone and would watch her read … continue on, dear reader!

Doctor Who, You Say? I’ll Say!

Back in 2013, before Peter Capaldi was announced as the 12th doctor, I took a stab and making my own potential picks for the role of the Doctor. Capaldi ended up doing a great job, but recently announced that he is leaving the role after the 2017 season.

So the hunt begins for a new Doctor. I stand by much of my original list, but I’ll make some minor changes now that we are four years on.

First, I’ll remove Joseph Morgan from my list. I also need to remove Charles Dance since he’s on “Game of Thrones,” unless the elder Lannister gets killed off in order to allow him to take on the role of the Doctor. I would still leave Ben Barnes … continue on, dear reader!

My Books of 2016 List

I posted the books I read on another site and completely forgot to post them over here for posterity!!

Without further ado, here is the 2016 list (which does not reflect the various AWFUL free Kindle books I downloaded that ended up being complete and utter nonsense that should never have been self-published in the first place and for shame on those “authors” for thinking people wanted to read their poorly conceived creative writing project):

1. As You Wish by Cary Elwes
2. The Martian by Andy Weir
3. Last Light by Terri Blackstock
4. The Green Ember by S.D. Smith
5. The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
6. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
7. 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in continue on, dear reader!

With a Lot of Hard Work, Dobby Became An Awesome Dog

When we adopted Dobby the Dog two years ago, we realized quickly that he does not like strangers coming in the house. This was a good thing from a home protection point of view, but not so good when we were having guests come over to hang out. We’d have to put him in another room and wait for everyone to arrive so he wouldn’t charge the door and growl/bark at our guests. Once everyone arrived we’d take him out and he’d be fine because he was only aggressive with people actually coming in the door, not those who were already inside. Wacky dog.

Two weekends ago we had people over for our neighborhood’s dinner club. I opted not to put Dobby in a separate … continue on, dear reader!

The 2016 White Elephant Menu

For the past several years I’ve been posting our menu for the annual White Elephant party that we host at Christmastime. I didn’t post a recipe list in 2016, but here is the 2016 blog post! This year most of the things we served we brand new, with only a few repeats.

Each year we do two kinds of meatballs. This year we made two Asian inspired recipes. We had an “orange chicken” meatball – meaning it had the flavors that orange chicken from a Chinese restaurant would have, but made with meatballs instead of chicken. We also had Spicy Korean-style Gochujang meatballs – which were a huge hit. That crockpot was empty by the end of the night. I had made those meatballs two … continue on, dear reader!

An Overdue, and Sad Post

Chilly the Dog
In October I didn’t get a chance to post about this, but we had to put down one of our dogs, Chilly. He was a sweet, senior Australian Shepherd that we adopted just three short years ago. I knew the minute I saw Chilly’s picture on the rescue group’s website that I had to have him. We had adopted him as an older dog in 2013 and gave him to the kids as a Christmas present. Initially told he was about five years old, within a year we knew he was very much older – probably 9-10 years old, maybe even older. In 2015 he began aging rapidly – eyes turning milky, difficulty taking the stairs. But he was just as sweet … continue on, dear reader!