Friday, July 24, 2009

Just Realized....

Remember my post about gettting a second interview? Well the woman was supposed to call me Monday or Tuesday and it's now Friday afternoon and I've heard nothing. I don't even have her contact information because she a deparment head from a different office.


Bargain Hunter

I'm becoming a bargain hunter and I LOVE it. I'm clipping coupons, and browsing flyers and searching for deals online. I never used to be that way, but we're really (REALLY) tight on money right now and they say necessitiy is the mother of invention (or a change of intention).

Bub and I love going to see musicals and plays. We love to get a little dressed up, go down to Toronto for a nice dinner and a show. We've yet to see the Sound Of Music and it's run is over at the end of October so I'm anxious to get tickets and go. Our 3rd anniversary is coming up at the end of August, so I thought I'd see what it cost us to go on that date. I searched Sound of Music promo codes online and came up with 4 on Then I went to Ticket King, tried the codes ... and they worked! I'm getting the best seats in the house for cheaper than the 2nd worst seats. We're saving $40 per ticket! YAY! I text Bub and he said it was a good idea, so I'm going to book them. Now I just have to decide where we will go for dinner. That's almost impossible to decide in Toronto.

Can't wait!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Wizards, A Hit and Run and a Picnic

What a weekend! Another awesome couple of days that make coming back to work a really big pain in my a$$.

Friday night Bub and I were going to go to the drive-in to see Harry Potter 6. We're both huge HP fans so we had been looking forward to it for weeks. Well, when I left work at 4:30 on Friday afternoon, it was pouring rain. I got soaked running from the office to my car. So, we scrapped the drive-in idea and decided to go to the theatre instead. Our show started at 10:30... so it made for a late night, but it was worth it. The movie was very good. It's totally different from the first 5, but that's just staying true to the books. There's not a whole lot that happens, but it's a good (and necessary) build up for the next movie.

Saturday morning, I was super lazy so I stayed in bed watching Gilmore Girls while Bub went to visit with his Mom for a bit. We went to the library, then Giant Tiger and then went home to grab the dogs and took them for a huge walk in the bush. We watched a couple of trains and then headed home for steak and salad for dinner and a nap. We watched the original Guys and Dolls (w/ Marlon Brando and Frank Sinatra) and I LOVE it! I knew the story and have seen a live version, but never the original movie. I think I'm in love with Marlon Brando now, and also the name "Adelaide" for my future little girl.

My sister called at about 10:30 and we talked for 1/2 an hour until she said "I was going to call you tonight to see if you wanted to go out. "C" (my nephew's Dad) is DJ'ing at The Tux and I felt like dancing". I was bored already, so in a sper of the moment decision I told her I would meet her at her place (about 25 minutes away) ASAP and we could go out. I quickly got ready, put my confused little puppies at ease and in bed with their Dad and drove up to Orillia, arriving at my sisters house at about midnight. She jumped in the car and down we went.
I only had 2 drinks over the rest of the 3 hours because I was driving home, but my sister had fun! We danced and talked with C and his buddies who clearly LOVE what they do. DJ'ing is not C's full-time job (he has a suit and tie deal through the week) but he has been doing it for years and is really good. It's actually how him and my sister met about 16 years ago. My sister is kinda crazy on the dance floor but we still had a good time.

We're standing outside the club at the end of the night waiting for C to pack his stuff up so I could drive them home and I hear this huge THUD. It was the strangest, hollow sounding noise and I couldn't quite place it. I turn to my right to see a black SUV driving down the street and a guy rolling on the ground behind it. It takes a second, but then it all clicks together that this guy has just been hit by the SUV (an Escalade... so it's no small truck). The truck kept driving until the friends of the guy who got hit, chased it down screaming and started pounding on the windows. A girl gets out of the drivers seat and is clearly upset while all the friends of the guy are screaming at her that she just hit someone. All these people flood into the street to make sure the guy is ok. He's half sitting up but holding his head in his hands. I was totally freaked out and couldn't keep from thinking that I really hope this guy is okay because if he's not, I'm going to hear that sound in my head for the rest of my life. Three cruisers, 1 fire truck and an ambulance show up. I have no idea what happened to the girl who was driving the truck, but she was freaking out at the side of the road. By the end of it though the guy was up on his feet and everyone was cheering for him. I wish I knew what, if anything, the girl got charged with. Maybe she wasn't at fault... maybe the guy jumped out in front of her. You never know, but somehow I doubt it since she tried to drive away at first. She was probably drunk.

Sunday morning we had to go to my Nana's to move something for her, and then Bub took me on a picnic! :) He had packed it all the night before while I was out and he couldn't sleep. He had sandwiches, yogurt, pickles, olives, cheese and crackers and apple slices along with sparkling water with our funky plastic picnic plates and cups. He even had blanket to lay out and sit on and treats for the dogs. It was so sweet and fun. We went to a local park and sat under thehuge trees. The girls just wandered around and chased squirrels while we ate. We had dinner at my Mom's and then came home and I read, had a bath and then went to bed. I loved this weekend.
We're on holidays next week so I just need to get through 5 days (and hopefully 1 job interview) and then we're heading up to a cottage my Mum rents once a year. I'm soooo excited, and really REALLY hope that we actually get some summer weather for the trip.

Happy Shock

*Originally posted on The Nest on Friday July 17th*
I had a job interview this past Tuesday. It's for a position that's almost identical to what I do now (or what I DID before they centralized all of my duties in the US offices), but it's at a management level. I would have a small team of staff in the office reporting to me. It's 5K a year more and about 3 minutes from my house. I was excited to go to the interview, but not getting my hopes up too much since it's only a 1 year mat-leave contract, so I wasn't sure I would take it, even if it was offered to me.

The interview ended up being a group sesssion, where there were 3 interviewers and roughly 12 candidates. It went fine, but I didn't think that I really stood out in the (much older) crowd. I walked out at the end and forgot all about it... literally! I saw my Mum later that night and she asked me "how'd it go" and I said "how'd what go?". I really did not expect to get a call back.
Bub called me today when he got home to tell me that there was a message from "O" my contact at the new location, requesting that I come back for a 2nd interview. I was shocked! I had completely let it go and wasn't expecting a call at all.

So, sometime next week I'll be meeting with the head of the deparment for a second interview and then they will make their decision from there! I'm actually excited about it. The one year contract thing is not so great.... but I have to do something about this job and soon because I can't take the boredom anymore. I used to be so busy I didn't know what to do with myself and I now I'm busy doing nothing but trying to look busy. It's awful and makes for really long days.
So... I'm crossing all fingers and toes that the 2nd interview goes well. I'm comfortable in 1-on-1 interviews and usually make a good impression, so I'm hoping this is no different.

Yay! and Happy Friday!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Weekend "Scare"

This weekend was my favorite kind of weekend.

Friday I had to head down to York for my enrollment appointment in the morning. It was an absolutely gorgeous day so I took the opportunity to wander around the HUGE campus and take it all in. I’m 100% sure that I will be getting lost several times as I get to know my way around. It’s so big…. but really nice. I love it there already.

My appointment went well. I got enrolled in my courses, got my email setup and got my student card. I have this weird obsession with looking at my student card where it says “undergraduate student”. I’ve wanted to be an undergraduate student for so long, so there’s something very satisfying about it.

Starting in September I’m taking “Microeconomics” at the campus, “Introduction to Administrative Studies” online and my gen-ed (humanities) course “One World: Historical and Cultural Perspectives of Globalization” at the campus. Then in January my gen-ed continues and I start “Macroeconomics” at the school and “Introduction to Organizational Behavior” online. So by April I’ll have 18 credits on top of the 30 that they granted me as transfer credit. So, it’s not so bad. It’s the exact number of classes that I wanted to have (9 credits) per term. I’m so excited to start and am actually considering changing my major to get my BAS (Bachelor of Administrative Studies). I know that everyone thinks I’m crazy to think about switching already, but I did actually apply to this ahead of what I am taking, but didn’t have a pre-req math course I needed. So, I want to try to switch after my first year is completed. My plan is to take classes that are concurrent between the two majors first so I can make my decision later. All of my classes this year are like that.

Unfortunately I had to head back to work afterwards in cottage traffic, but I made it back to work a couple of hours in the afternoon. Bub and I went and got subs for dinner on Friday and watched some Gilmore Girls.

Saturday we cleaned, did laundry, ran some errands, went to the library and grocery store and went to Rib Fest for an amazing pulled pork sandwich. It was to die for. We also went to a new store for groceries and spent about $20 less than normal, so we’re going to shop there again next time and see if we can continue to save like that (that's $40/month)! We made my fave dinner, I had a bath, some lovin' and read for a bit.

Sunday Bub brought me breakfast in bed, then my step-dad came over to look at our lawnmower and he was able to fix it! YAY! I don’t have to pay to have it repaired or replaced! J So Bub was finally able to cut the lawn! The jungle in my backyard has been removed and the girls don't have to trudge through the long grass anymore! My father-in-law stopped by and we went back down to rib-fest to have a couple beers and try another sandwich. We napped with the dogs, made dinner and watched some more Gilmore Girls. It was so much more relaxed than the last 4 weekends have been and I missed just hanging out at home.

So here’s the weird part. AF was due on Friday morning and I am like clockwork. I mean that in the most literal way. I get AF every fourth Friday somewhere between 10 and 11am. So when it didn’t show up all day Friday, I started to get a little nervous. Then Saturday came and went and still no AF. I also couldn’t help but noticed that there was a definite lack of cramping too, which normally start for me about 2 days before AF actually arrives. I told Bub that I was late (although only a day at this point) and he was pretty calm about it (before I decided to go back to school, we were going to start trying for a baby this winter, so it’s not a huge shocker to him). The problem would be school. There’s no way that I could go back and have a baby that would be due right in the middle of winter term. We didn’t talk much about it because I knew it was too early to be nervous, but I thought about it all weekend. The more I thought about it the more excited I got and started thinking “okay, I can take my classes in fall-term, I’ll just have to switch the gen-ed for something that doesn’t run all year” then I’ll take next term off and then play it by ear when to go back after the baby is born.” I was getting really excited but was still nervous.

Sunday morning came and still no AF or cramps. I was now getting really excited even though I tried to remain calm and “hopeful” when Bub asked me if I had got it and then assured me that it would come. However, sitting outside in the backyard Sunday afternoon I got a sudden rush of intense cramps, so I went inside to check and sure enough AF had arrived. I couldn’t believe how disappointed I was. As much as it would have messed up my school plans, I would have loved to be pregnant and start a family now. When I told Bub, he high fived me and said “sweet…. no babies yet!” I smiled and agreed, but I was really upset. At least now I know how I’ll feel if I was to get pregnant by accident. It’s strange to be at a place in my life where a pregnancy “scare” is a good thing to a certain extent. I’ve never been there before.

So, I’m not pregnant and starting school as planned in September. I’m still super excited about it, but there’s still a little part of me that’s disappointed that my belly won’t be growing any time soon.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

My girls are always good for 2 things: a laugh and a mess.

I'm in the process of transitioning our dogs to a new, MUCH better food. I didn't realize that the food I was giving them was one of the lowest rated kibbles available (Pedigree Healthy Vitality). To add to that, Jenny has no interest in puppy food and only wants to eat her sisters food so I wanted to find something good for all ages. So, after a lot of research, on the way home from work last night I stopped at the pet food store and bought a little bag of the new food that I had decided on (Canidae All Life Stages- Chicken, Turkey Lamb & Fish Meal). It's all natural, meat rich and rated 5 stars (Pedigree was 1). It's a little expensive, but it's totally worth it. I don't feed myself junk, so I don't want to feed my dogs junk. Plus, apparently with high quality foods they eat less (because there's less fillers and crap so they don't need as much) and poop less (because they're using more of what they're eating) so it's really a win-win.

But, I digress.... I will not get preachy in this post. So I get home, I mix some of the new food with some of the old food to help their little belly's with the transition and put their bowls down on the kitchen floor. Now, I'm a "free-feeder" which means there is always food available to them and they just sort of "graze" (for lack of a better word) when they are hungry. So I knew the must like the new food when the both came right over and immediately started eating. I turned around and started making my own dinner. When I realized I couldn't hear Lola eating I turned around to praise her for eating a whole bowl at once (she usually just picks through the day).... and what did I find??

Lola had picked out ALL of the old kibble and eaten only the new stuff! There was Pedigree all over my kitchen floor! She was sitting beside the empty bowl with her head cocked to the side staring at me as if to say "Um Mum.... screw the old food, the new food is awesome and I'm gonna have to get you to give me some more of that". Jenny on the other hand, was sitting quietly daintily eating one kibble at a time, not making any mess.

I burst into laughter before kneeling on the floor to clean it up. My girls are always good for a laugh and a mess, pretty much regardless what they do.

So... so much for slowly transitioning Lola to the new food. Apparently the taste of it has ruined her pallet for anything less. I'm happy that she likes it though and I would rather that then to have a problem switching.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I think money could buy me happiness, or at least a little peace of mind.

I’m broke…. and I mean BROKE. Don’t get me wrong, all the bills are always paid and we always have groceries etc but there’s basically nothing left when we’re done. I’m trying to get my credits cards paid off right now so a big chunk of my disposable income (and there isn’t much of it to begin with) is going towards my credits cards every pay. This isn’t going to stop anytime soon because the way I have it figured out, my credits cards won’t be paid off for 8 months or more. Not to mention that my car needs some work ASAP that will have to go on my credit cards because I can’t afford to pay for it outright so that means that the 8 months will be extended even longer, depending on how much it all costs (breaks, oil change, belt replacement).
To top that off, I’m about to go into more debt for school. I thought I was going to be able to use some of my RSP’s to pay for school, but because I am only going part time, I don’t quality for that particular program, so I’m going to have to get a line of credit.

We need to put a roof on the house, so that will have to be financed too. Our lawn-mower broke, so I’m crossing my fingers that whatever is wrong with it is covered under warranty (it’s not even a year old) because I can’t afford to buy a new one and our vacuum broke and needs to be replaced! GOD! The list just keeps piling up and up. I’m freaking out! This is not to mention all the stuff that we want to do (to the house, this summer etc). Just the “must-do” list is overwhelming never mind the “We want to love our house and life” list. I didn’t ever finish getting plants for my garden, the paint in our bedroom still needs to be fixed…. and so on.

I’ve decided to go through our finances with a fine tooth comb and see where I can make some cuts.
Here’s what I’ve been thinking about so far.

-We both take a lunch to work every day (and have been doing that for years)
-We hardly ever go out for dinner (maybe once per month, if at all, and it’s always somewhere reasonably priced) because DH is an awesome cook and loves to do it
-I have recently stopped going to Tim Horton’s for breakfast and my afternoon tea (this alone saves about $20/week).
-We currently have mortgage insurance and I think we could get life insurance for less $$ per month, so I’m going to look in to that
-I’m going to see if it would be cheaper to move our car, home and life insurance to one place (perhaps the same bank or institution that I get my student line of credit from). Right now we’re getting a good deal on car insurance at the current place, but maybe it would be better if we rolled it all into one?
-Our phone, satellite and internet are on one bill…. But I need to review to see if we can make any cuts anywhere (this is one of our largest bills)

I need some money saving tips (good websites for coupons and deals etc etc etc. Any words of wisdom, advice, thoughts?

I have a job interview tomorrow afternoon. It’s for basically exactly what I do now except on a management level, it’s more $$ and less hours (about 5k more a year with 37.5 hours /week as opposed to 40) and the location is awesome because it’s not even 5 minutes from our house which means I could start taking public transit or walking again (this means our car doesn’t get used on weekdays as Bub walks or bikes to work. The only problem is that it’s only a 1 year mat-leave contract. I’m torn because I really don’t think my current job will exist for much longer but I don’t know that for sure. I’m bored to tears here too so it would be really nice to have something challenging again. I guess I just feel strange giving up something that supposedly “permanent” (so they say) for something temporary. I don’t know what to do. I’m just going to go to the interview and see what happens I guess. No point in worrying about it now.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Stellar Weekend- BIG MUSIC FEST

*Originally posted June 29 2009*

Saturday we attended Big Music Fest Wiarton at the Wiarton airfield, with headliners- THE TRAGICALLY HIP! Being that they're my favorite band, I could not pass up the opportunity to see them outdoors during a great Canadian summer! They played in a remote little town at an airfield, and the all day event was a blast. This was my third Hip show, of many more to come I hope! We went with our 4 other friends and Bub actually met up with some other friends once we arrived and he got seperated from us!

Also performing:
The Spades
Arkells (who I'm now a big fan of)
Sam Roberts Band

It was an awesome day. The weather was perfect, the beer was cold, the friends were good and the music was, as always, fantastic. We drove out early, listening to some great music on the way up, and after stopping for lunch, arrived at 2ish for a pre-festival tailgate party in the venue parking lot (which was a huge field). We drank some beers, at some muchies, blew-up our Canada beach balls, drank more beer (well, I didn't because I was driving home), listened to some great music and had a good time with the people around us and then headed in the actual festival at about 4.

Bubba asked me on the way there what my "must hear" songs were. My choices (and faves) were: Courage, Wheat Kings & Bobcaygeon (Bobcaygeon and Wheat Kings are two of my favorite songs EVER). We thought I was pretty much out of luck since Bubba has seen them 6 times and has never heard them perform Bobcaygeon (apparently they never perform it live) and only heard Wheat Kings once... although your pretty safe with Courage. Well, I screamed when I realized that they were about to play "Wheat Kings" about a third of the way in and the WHOLE crowd sang along (awesome), they played an awesome acoustic version of "Courage" and then coming to the end of the show, Gord, the lead singer who talks totoally randomly between songs says "It was in a little town, not unlike this one, on a night not unlike this one, although with a little less cloud cover...." and I turned to my BIL (because I had lost Bubba at this point) and said "oh my god, they're going to play it!!!"... and sure enough he continues "I saw the constellations reveal themselves one star at the time" which is a line from the chorus of "Bobcaygeon". Then the first chords of the song started and the crowd went CRAZY! I clapped my hands together and said to BIL "I'm soooo happy... I can't believe they're actually playing it!". We all sang along at the top of our lungs and swayed to the music, it was awesome.

The best line Gord said through the whole concert was "all winter, we stay inside and dream of nights like this. Perfect summer nights outside with friends and music"... and it's so true. The Hip music is the Canadian summer. You'd be hard pressed to drive around in cottage country (Muskoka) on a Saturday in the summer and not hear someone blasting the Hip.
The whole day was awesome ending with a bang when the Hip played the best set I've heard them play yet. If it's possible, I love the Hip even more now.