Monday, December 29, 2008

2009 Resolutions

So I'm back at work after a 5 day break and I'm not very happy about it. Although I was getting bored sitting at home, it was nice to be away from the bulls**t and stress for a while. Everyone else is working for 3 days and then gets another 4 off (New Years Day + a "company wide holiday" on the 2nd and then the regular weekend). However, I have to work on the second and THIRD due to the month/quarter close mandatory working days for the finance team. They tell us that the good news is, we will get 2 days off in lieu some other time... but seriously? IT'S THE HOLIDAYS! It will be USLESS for me to be here, but I'll do it anyway to save myself the drama and fight with my boss... I'm really not happy about it though.

This leads me to my next topic.....I've decided what my New Year resolutions for 2009 are (which is pretty big considering I don't usually make them):

1- Get credit cards paid off (if this means getting a second, part-time, job... that's what I'll do... I'm done with credit card debt)- ASAP, the sooner the better.

2- Lose the remainder of my excess weight (I'm thinking this is about 20- 30 pounds max, but I haven't weighed myself in a long time so I don't know)- by July 2009

3- Quit smoking- by the end of 2009

4- Get a new roof on the house- by the end of the summar/ early fall


Now I just need to convince Bub that his reolutions should be the same. The smoking, credit card and roof thing are definate MUST COMPLETE'S before we start TTC. The weight thing would just be nice so that I am the healthiest that I can be before getting pregnant. The job's- well this goes two ways. I can make my current job work, I'm just ridiculously unhappy. Bub, on the other hand, needs to have a better job before we have children because he doens't make enough to get us through my maternity leave (during which I would go down to 55% of my pay for 12 months). It would also be nice to have him making more $$ so we're not struggling to pay for daycare etc even after I go back to work.

It's going to be a tight year $$ wise. We would really like to take a vacation as well, but we'll just have to see how it goes. We may be able to pull it off in the fall when the prices are cheap. I have lots of planning and budgeting to do in the next couple of weeks. I always feel better once I have plan of action. It's reassuring to have some sort of hard copy, tangible budget/plan to follow. I'm sure this will mean picking up a part-time job for a while, but I'm willing to do it. I need to have less $$ stress before we even start thinking about babies. As it stands right now, we couldn't do it.

So... here's to 2009, getting things done.... and to starting a family!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Well... I made it.

After what was definatley one of the most stressful months of my life, the move is complete, my other project is almost completely done (at least the hard part is over) and I had the talk with my new boss about the work overload (in terms of my finance duties) so my hope is that the upcoming close will be a lot easier than the previous. The conversation went well. I think he (yes- I have new boss now due to corporate resturcturing) was actually listening to me this time. He had me send him my job description and "resume" so he knows what my experience is and what my capabilities are. He's based out of our US office and fully admited that he didn't really know what my responsibilites were and agreed that all my concerns were fair. He was glad that I brought it all up to him for discussion. We're going to talk more next week. Hopefully this is the first step in the right direction. I think I am still going to look for a new job in the new year, but this one is definately more tolerable for the time being.

The move went really well. We were only down (network and phones) for Friday afernoon and Monday morning for a couple of hours. This was much less downtime than we expected and I got an email sent around to all the staff in our office, by my GM (the co-founder of the company) thanking me for all my hard work. This was really gratifying... and to top it all off, she cc'd the CEO of our parent company in and he replied to everyone thanking me for all my hard work too. It's nice to be noticed, especially when, for the last month and a half, I've felt like no one really gave a shit about me or what I did.

The GM told me that I need to take some paid time off, in addition to my vacation, for all the overtime I worked on the move. Since I'm on salary, it was really nice of her to offer this. I think, as long as I can work it out with the big wigs in the US, I'm going to take it ASAP.

I'm now off for the next 5 days and couldn't be happier about it. I really need this down time after the stress of the past little while. I love Christmas and can't wait for Wednesday. I'm so pumped to see Bub's reaction to his gift. :) He's going to be psyched. Since he's sitting right here, I better not risk posting what I got him (just in case he peeks at my screen) but it's pretty cool and it's something that he's wanted for a while.

Bub has to work tomorrow, but afterwards, we are heading to my Mum's for dinner. Christmas morning is always just the two of us, brunch at his Dads and then it's his mom's year to host dinner, so we'll be heading over there. I would love to get some boxing day shopping in, but I just don't have the money. We'll see. Maybe my credit card can take a little beating. Probably not so smart when I'm not 100% sure about my job security... but why not take the risk??? :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Fabulous Fifties!

We threw a big surprise 50th for my MIL on December 12th. It was a 50's/ Grease Theme party and it was a lot of fun. We rented a hall, had a DJ, had 50-70 guests, awesome food that everyone pitched in and cool decorations.

Being 50's themed there was lots of pink and black.We had pink table cloths with records that we bought from goodwill and candles as centerpieces. We had music note shaped confetti, Elvis posters, pink and black balloons, pink and black plates/napkins, an awesome pink cake with black polka-dots... it was really cool. Then we had decalls that said "At the hop" and "Rock and Roll" etc.
I danced my face off and had a GREAT time... it cost us a lot of $$, but it was totally worth it. MIL was so happy and very surprised.
We dressed up in the theme too... here's some pics.
Me and my goodwill costume!

Bub- waiting for his Mom to arrive! He looked really good in his costume!

Auntie Cherrianne- she just happened to own this costume already!

Tom and Bonnie- you can always count on these two to go all out.... they looked awesome!

My job will be the death of me...

Here's the update on my god-awful, gut-wrenching, make me want to break my own legs (and maybe arms) so I don't have to go to work, situation.

It has been a rough few weeks. I went from having nothing to do most of the time and going out of my head.... to being totally and completely overwhelmed.

With the departure of Tess (see previous post of details) a lot of her responsibilites have fallen on my shoulders while my duties have been centralized at HQ. The only problem with that is, I am not an accountant!!! Most of the things that she did for close were things that I wouldn't even know how to start or even pretend to do. Closing November was a nightmare. I was working ridiculous hours and was on the verge of tears most days. I like to be really busy at work, but I HATE being busy with stuff that I don't know how to do. Could you figure out how to amortize intangibiles for a publicly traded company on your own when you've never even seen it before??? NO.... I didn't think so. I felt like a fool because I was constantly saying "I don't know" or "I need help" or "I'm totally lost". I was stressed to the max. This better improve because I can't handle that every month for a week. Every couple of minutes another email came in with another task for me... it was so frustrating.

We're also moving offices and that lovely project was assigned to me (and I was give basically 3.5 weeks to get it all done). I had no idea it would become such a logistical nightmare. I thought it would be time consuming, but fairly simple. um....WRONG! What a complicated mess it became and still is. I can't wait until this is all done.

I was/am responsible for everything from booking movers to working with Network specialists and electricians to wire the new location. What's with me getting assigned to tasks that I don't have a clue about? It makes it really stressful to know that it's ALL riding on you and you don't have a clue what your talking about. Where was our internal IT department through all of this you might ask? Oh... our office location doesn't have any official IT team. The closest team is in EMERYVILLE CALIFORNIA! Not only is that about an 6.5 hour plane ride away, but they are 3 hours behind us!!!! This makes life really interesting. When I asked if they would be coming up to assist with the move they said "we don't have the budget". So, they left me... who's on the Finance and HR team, to take care of it all. I keep getting calls like "When we move the BCM and the Megalink, what's the projected down time and who will be responsible to syncing the cisco with the network".... WHAT???? I HAVE NO FRIGGIN' CLUE! YOUR THE IT TEAM... FIGURE IT OUT!

Then I was basically volunteered by our Director of Engineering to work over the weekend to babysit the movers/ installers etc. So, Merry Christmas Ashley... your working the whole weekend before Christmas while the management and IT team sit on their asses at Christmas parties getting drunk. SWEET! Well- I actually don't have a clue what their doing, but I didn't see them volunteering to come in. It will be interesting because I will need to be in two places at once (new location and current location) so we'll see how that goes!

I was back and forth between the sites meeting security guys, landlords, electricians, phone installers, network installers blah blah blah. I've been over once today and have to go back TWICE more before I go home. I have to go at least twice tomorrow and who knows how many times on Friday. At least they're paying my mileage.

On top of all of this, we had a financial audit last week. For my office (and therefore the whole of one of the child companies) I am now the only one in Finance/HR. Therefore, while the whole Finance team in our US offices got to split up the duties for the audit for their companies, I had to do it all for mine. It's really crazy when 10 people are contacting you and everything they need you to do is priority# 1. Um... not possible people. I felt like screaming... "I AM ONLY ONE PERSON AND FINANCE IS NOT MY ONLY JOB. You all have clear cut jobs like-come to work, sit at desk, do AP all day long- and the next person is -come to work, sit at desk, do bank recs all day long. My list of tasks, roles, responsibilites is sooooo long and soooooo diverse I have-come to work, do AP, AR, deferred revenue, bank recs, professional services, collections, account management, project management, office management, supply ordering, HR dutes (RSP's, vacations, time off, new hires etc. etc.), special projects, baby-sit staff, plan staff functions, etc. etc. etc. "

Between coordinating the move on my own, closing the month, one other special project that's on a tight time frame, the audit and then doing THE REST OF MY REGULAR JOB, I am totally maxed out.

To top it all off, I was so looking forward to next week. I took Christmas Eve as a personal day so I was going to be off from the 24th through the 28th, work 3 days and then be off from the 1st through the 4th. Well... I get an email from our assistant controller that because it's quarter end, the finance team has MANDATORY WORKING DAYS on January 2nd and January 3rd while the rest of the company gets to enjoy a paid holiday. OH! and, the hours? 9-5 PST... I'm EST which means it's 12-8 my time. I'll be in the office, all alone (the rest of the finance team is in California) until 8 o'clock. My Dad (who I see 2ish times a year) generally visits during this time, so I'll be missing spending time with him to sit at work alone. I don't even know why they need me because they realized last month that I can't do any of the stuff that they need me to. So it will be just like closing November... I'll be sitting here alone, totally overwhelmed, getting 100's of emails asking me to do things that I don't know how to do and I'm sure I'll be crying. At least no one will be around to see it this time around (although no one saw it last time).

I'm sinking... soon I will just drown. I can't WAIT to start looking for a new job! I guess I should just be happy that I have a job at all right now.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I'm not a very good person

I came to the realization recently that I am not a very good person. Oh I come across to those I meet as sweet and funny and positive... but deep down, that's just not me and I think people who've known me for a while know it, but just don't say anything.

I'm judgemental- although not out loud, I have some not so nice thoughts about a lot of people. I wish I didn't have them, but I do. And then when I decide for sure that I don't like someone... I have nothing nice to say. Take my SIL for example. She drives me CRAZY and I have said awful things about her in the past, many, many times. How does that make me any better than her? Who am I to judge people when I'm a pretty crappy person myself. I have a tendancy to talk like I'm superior to some people... and although I know it's just not true, I continue to do it.

I'm a Liar- this is something that I've tried to stop doing, and have done pretty well, but in my teenage years and even early in my relationship with my husband I lied.. A LOT. It got me into a lot of trouble because I couldn't keep the lies straight even though they were about ridiculous things that didn't effect anyone but me(such as "I'm a competative dancer"). When I felt I was lacking somewhere I would make something up and then it just became habit. I lost a lot of friends because of this. In my mid-teens I lied and said that I had done some pretty hard core drugs with a non-existent group of friends, just so that I could be included in a conversation. From then on I just stuck with the story because I liked the shock value. WTF!!!!! WHO LIES ABOUT DOING DRUGS???? I've never done anything more than smoked a joint and even that I've only done maybe half a dozen times my whole life and not in YEARS! I HATE drugs!

I'm Mean: I get really easily frustrated, stressed and angry and then take it out on the wrong people... usually my husband. He'll ask me the simplest question like "what do you want for dinner" and I'll respond with something like "why do you always ask me that? Learn to make decisions for yourself". I can be a HUGE *** a lot of the time and no matter how hard I try to change it, that's just what ends up happening.
I can't take criticism or admit to mistakes: at work, if anything happens that looks like it may be my fault, my first instinct is to try to find a way to say that it wasn't actually my fault and place the blame elsewhere. The sad thing is, it usually works, at least in part, and I get off the hook. I don't deserve to, but I do.

I thrive on drama: this is one of the things that I just noticed about myself. I enjoy drama.... family drama, friend drama... whatever it may be. I HATE THAT! I wish I could just deal with things as they come, like my Mom does, calmly and maturley. Instead, I have the tendancy to freak out! I get mad, or cry or blow things out of proportion and it's sooooo stupid. It makes my life miserable along with the people around me.

What is my problem? Why can't I just be normal? I really don't like myself lately.