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Sunday, September 28, 2014

2014 Fall Bucket List

Fall is my absolute favorite season. It's the introduction to my three favorite months.
I love feeling the cooler weather and having the windows opened throughout the house. Seeing the leaves change from greens to yellows and oranges and reds is one of the highlights of the season. I wish the leaves were always different shades of colors. This season makes me wish I knew how to use the manual settings on my camera.
 
Once Fall is upon us, here comes Halloween, Thanksgiving, mine and Matt's dating anniversary (9 this year), my birthday and then Christmas. What's not to like about Fall? Even when I was younger I used to be excited about going back to school and getting those shiny new school supplies and new clothes.
Good times I tell you... good times.
 
Every Fall I always have a list of things I want to see and do. And every year, I barely make a dent in those items.
Not this year. This year I am going to make a list and cross them all off. Or at least as many as I can. I'm going to think of it as a Fall Bucket List. I might add a few things if I find some other fun activities.
 
Jessica's 2014 Fall Bucket List
Go to a pumpkin patch
Carve a pumpkin
Get lost in a corn maze
Be terrified by a haunted house
Decorate the house for Fall
Make a Halloween wreath (Fall one is already hung on door)
Drink apple cider
Build a fire (in my fire pit)
Roast marshmallows over fire pit
Take pictures of Fall
Photograph old barn
Make and eat a pumpkin pie
Eat a cranberry and walnut bagel from Panaera
Experience a hay ride
 
Do you have a Fall Bucket List?
 

Friday, September 26, 2014

TGIF

If I could have typed that in GIANT letters and screamed it from the top of my lungs, I would have done it. I have never been so glad for a work week to be over. Okay, okay.... maybe I am exaggerating a bit. It has just been a bit of an adjustment for me though. Meaning, it has been a long week and I am thankful it is over and now I have 2 days of no plans where I can stay up as late as I desire and sleep in as long as I want (or as Wyatt wants if Matt doesn’t wake with him).
 
Overall, please know I'm not complaining... I am VERY happy and thankfully to have gotten a new job with a little higher pay. This perk has me over the moon. Honestly.
 
On the other hand, here's how my work week went down:
Monday I arrived with a small bundle of nerves in my belly and hope in my heart(?). I went to my new supervisor who gave me Clorox wipes to clean my desk, moved my stuff from my old desk down to my new desk and then went to start my processing into my new department. I started filling out a form to get it done, but when I told the guy doing my paperwok that I didn’t save all the files from my computer to disks, he told me to wait and have IT do this first before my old account was deleted and my new account was created. Evidently you lose all your files. Annoying problem/issue #1. 
 
Side note - Why do they need to delete and then re-add me? I literally just moved downstairs in my same building with the same main employer. The only thing that changed was my division. Talk about a waste of money and resources. Of course, that's a whole other issue you don't want to get me started on. 
 
Even though I called IT Monday morning, they didn’t show up till Tuesday morning. No big deal...I was able to work all day Monday like normal.
After IT saved all my stuff, I went back to process in - meaning, I had to stop in 3 different offices for 3 different signatures. Annoying, but easy enough. I then turned in my paperwork and sat there with the guy while he typed all my information into the computer. I was told I would not have access to a computer until my old account was deleted and the new one was activated (we all have accounts/codes to log into the computer to do anything).
Annoying problem/issue #2.

Back to my new office I go. I tell my new bosses. They cannot believe this either, but not much they can do about it. In the meantime, my new department is telling me I didn't fully out process my old department so all day Monday and Tuesday I was forced to go back and forth between a few different offices to get it all straightened out. Long story short - the lady who should have out processed me from my old department is either lazy or an idiot. The department over my whole building ended up fixing my issue after that guy's boss got involved. They both seemed to think that lady was lazy and and an idiot just as I had thought.
Annoying problem/issue #3.

Back to#2... since I couldn't even log onto my computer to surf the web, I decided to read my book. Hardly read 10 pages when one of my new bosses called me to him and had someone print off rules and regulations for me to read since 'I had nothing else to do' - his words, not mine. Message received. No reading in my new office. Major bummer since I enjoy reading at my desk when I have a break. Guess I won't be doing that anymore. *Sigh*
Annoying problem/issue #4.

Long story short for #2 and #4, I wasn’t able to access my computer until lunch time on Wednesday. I was SO bored! I read those rules and regulations, then went back and highlighted the important information and then even started writing some of it out on notebook paper. Can you tell how bored I was just sitting there starring at stupid rules and regulations I already know? Again - I just moved departments to (for now) do the same job I was already doing until I am trained on additional duties.
I got to work for about an hour before the system went down.
Annoying problem/issue #5.
 
Yep, now I couldn't work because the program we use to research wasn’t working. Great. Back to pretending to read rules and regulations and surfing the web. At least I had access to the web. Too bad one of my new bosses seems to walk around a lot.
And guess what? That program stayed down until around 9AM this morning.
Keep in mind, my new office is smaller then my old office and I only sit near 2 other people who are both very quiet. Time passes too slowly when you have nothing worthwhile to read and no one to talk to.
 
As of now, I miss my old office. I know getting a new job is an adjustment and I also know I'll get used to this new place. Just takes a little time. Assuming I can work all next week, it should go better for me.

I am thankful I still get to eat lunch with my friend Linda. She keeps me sane at work. What am I going to do when she is gone for 10 work days while on her cruise (starting on Thursday)?


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Happy Fall Ya'll

I promise I had the best of intentions to post a picture of my new fall wreath on the first day of autumn, but obviously, that ship has sailed. You like how I added in a 'ship'? Subliminal messages people. Subliminal messages.... Just saying.
 
Without further ado, I present to you my fall burlap wreath:
I did not accomplish the exact look I was wanting, but I am settling for the year and calling this 'done'. I used 3 rolls of ribbon and you can barely see those colors. I wanted the ribbon to be bursts of pooping color. Your eye would see burlap, yes, but you would also see creams and oranges and the other colors.
The burlap didn’t do what I was wanting it to do either. I think the material is too heavy. All those YouTube videos I watched online made it look easy. They have either made a jillion of these things or they are naturally gifted. Clearly, I am neither. What do you think it is? Perhaps they used double the amount of ribbon then they claimed? That's a valid conclusion on my part.
Once fall is over I will remove all the material off my wreath form and use the form for my winter wreath. I already have some ideas brewing in my head as to the look I am wanting to achieve. I'm going to keep it my little secret for now.
 
In completely other news...
Round 1 of Clomid was an epic fail.
Sadly.
I was very hopefully... even though deep down I wasn't expecting it to work. I can't imagine many people have good luck on round 1.

With the exception of feeling bloated and constipated, I was very fortunate not to have any of the side effects I read online and on the instruction sheet from the pharmacy while taking the Clomid tablets. Those were 50mg each. After talking to the nurse who talked to the doctor, I am starting round 2 of Provera and Clomid at 100 mg this time.
I took my first Provera pill last night with dinner. Currently feeling bloated and constipated. I wanted to start the process as quickly as I could. I am going to try and eat better this cycle. Maybe that was part of my problem. Maybe not. Who knows.  Fingers crossed all goes well!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Moving On

Two Mondays ago (aka two weeks ago) I had a job interview for an internal job within my building....
Before I even got the email offering me the interview, my boss asked me if I had an upcoming interview in XXXXXX. I replied with a big fat no. This was news to me if it was true. And let me tell you, I was very doubtful. My boss then proceeded to tell me how the person over this particular department told her someone from her team had made the referral list and was getting invited for an interview. She told him she hoped it was me because I'm a hard working employee and deserve a promotion. She said she was telling me because I was the only one she could think of in our office who would have applied for it.
1.) How nice of her to speak so highly of me and 2.) I was hopeful, but not counting on it.
 
Once she walked away, I went through all my old documents to see if I had even applied for this particular job... I had.
And thankfully, the very next morning, I got an email inviting me for the interview.
Obviously I replied yes and then told my boss the exciting news. She seemed genuinely happy for me.
 
The interview was with a panel of four people - three men and a lady. It's one thing to have an interview one on one, but it’s a whole other ballgame when four people are starring you down as you answer their questions.
I felt the interview mostly went well. Although there were two questions I had to have repeated and there were a few things I was unsure of in regards to my answers.
 
After my interview, I told my boss how it went and she later went to the same guy and asked how I did. He told her I did great and I didn’t appear nervous at all. I told her he was lying because I had even told them I was nervous. LOL!
A few days passed and I just moved on. Not because I didn't think I got the job.... they usually take FOREVER to pick someone and then notify them.
Guess what though?
I got the job and I start tomorrow!
Yes, you read the above correctly!
Last Monday, my boss came up to me to see if I had heard anything. I had not. She asked if I had been checking my email. I had. She told me to keep checking my email. I KNEW SHE KNEW SOMETHING! Yet when I asked, she just told me to keep checking my email. In hindsight, could she be anymore obvious? :)
I even texted Matt while still at work and told him I think I got the job but I didn't want to get my hopes up in case I didn't.
 
Tuesday, I got the call... I got the job!!!
Wednesday, I got the official offer in writing. And duh!... I accepted.
Thursday I out-processed my current department and my current boss and I got invited to check out my new desk.
And here we are, Sunday evening before starting my new job. I'm sitting in bed typing this up while my face mask is hardening on my face. I still have a few more things to do tonight and then I am off to bed.
I'm nervous and excited. I hate making new friends and I am unsure of how my new schedule will be. I am also concerned about how easily vacation and sick time can be used. I have a dental appointment in two weeks and I might have a doctor appointment this week. Not to mention I want the day after Thanksgiving and a few days around Christmas off. Priorities right?
I am hoping tomorrow I find out I worried for nothing.
 
Wish me luck!
 
 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Shakespeare and the Parthenon

This past weekend, Matt and I went to Tennessee to visit our family. Always nice to see everyone. I just hate the car ride. Blah! Not so bad going there (maybe because I am looking forward to seeing everyone???), but on the way home, that dang car ride seems very long!
The main reason we decided to visit over this particular weekend was to go see Shakespeare in the Park at Centennial Park in Nashville with my parents. Each year, for the past 27 years, they act out a different Shakespearean play during the summer. This year, they put on 'As You Like It'.
It is really good! To be honest, I wasn’t very sure if I would get into it. I'm not normally a fan of Shakespeare.
(It's wasn't my husband's 'thing'.)
The play was set in the mid 1930s. Emily Landham played the character Rosalind according to the handout we received. She was such a good actress and was part of the reason I enjoyed the show as much as I did. I imagine someone will scoop her up for something big one day. She definitely deserves it based on her acting skills. If you ever see her name within the cast for something, check it out.
 
Prior to going to the play, we didn’t really know what to expect since we had never been to this sort of event. We weren't prepared at all. We knew there would be food trucks which was our plan for dinner. I didn’t even think to bring drinks and snacks. Thankfully, my mom shared her goodies with us. If we do something like this again, I would bring a picnic of sandwiches, snacks and drinks.
I am glad my mom reminded me to pack our chairs though. I would have hated watching from the ground on a blanket.
With the 15 minute intermission, the play lasted 2 hours and 45 minutes. WOW! A very long play! And guess what? Time flew! It didn’t seem like we had been there that long. When Matt and I got back to the car, I was shocked at how late it had gotten without me knowing.
 
(No picture taking was allowed which is why I only have the one picture from the show.)
 
Because we arrived at the park early, we decided to check out the Parthenon which is a full-scale replica of the original building in Athens. Evidently this replica was built in 1897.


It was beautiful!
 
I wish we could have viewed the inside of the building, but we weren’t there by 4:30 PM when they closed. And even if we had been, a wedding was going on inside so we probably couldn’t have visited it.
Dang it!
Maybe next time!
I'll be sure to add it to my bucket list of things I want to do in the near future.

Either way, I have some impressive pictures don’t you think?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

17 on the 17th

My sweet baby boy Wyatt has turned 17 today.
Amazing, huh?
I am so thankful my little guy is still doing well after all these years.
  
In celebration of his birthday, here are some of my favorite pictures of him from the last few months.
 
 
 
 
If only he wasn't such a picky eater, I would have bought him some doggy ice cream to celebrate. Instead, he ate some chicken.
*Sigh*


Monday, September 1, 2014

Spring Mill State Park & More

In honor of Labor Day and since Matt and I were both off from work, we decided to take a day trip to Spring Mill State Park in Mitchell, Indiana.
I recently read about it online and then researched it to see if it was somewhere we would be interested in visiting for a few hours. Obviously, we went there because I felt it was worth checking out. Located approximately 80 miles and 1 1/2 hours away from our home, this was no short trip. We made the mistake of leaving the house an hour before lunch and didn't pack anything. We had stopped at Kroger on the way out of town, but had only bought drinks and chips. Due to my poor planning, we were forced to stop at a Wendy's a few miles away for chicken salads right before heading to the park.
 
For out of state guests, cost is $7 per vehicle. In state is $5 per vehicle. Not fair at all - according to my frugal self.
When you drive in, you can stop along the way at different trails, but we decided to go see the Gus Grissom memorial/museum (blah) followed by the pioneer village. These pioneers built there village around caves which have a constant water source that helped run this place back in the 1800s.
The park has about 15 different buildings all set up to be explored. Some buildings even had people dressed in the period specific clothes working on whatever there building consisted of - such as the blacksmith with pounding metal, the weaver was weaving, the doctor was selling medicine.... Very interactive.
 
The unique feature of this place is seen in this next picture.... the grist wheel. According to the internet, this is still operable today.
More beautiful cabins...
Check out these cornhusk dolls. Supposedly, the people of this time actually created ones just like these ones. Glad to hear little girls got to play with dolls even back then. Honestly, if I was a little girl today I would play with them. The only downside to them is you can't easily change the clothes on them. I would also need to draw on faces.
We hiked two very short trails. The first one passed by this neat water 'fall' on the way to two small caves viewable from where the trail ended.
As you can see, the pioneers used the cool, never frozen, water from the caves by moving it through this wood to where they needed it in there village - such as the mill.
Very innovative technology for the time frame.
Oh, look! You can see one of the village pioneers walking towards us!
 
Our next trail took us to Donaldson Cave.
This cave as beautiful!
After our short trip to Sprig Mill State Park, we stopped at Joe Hubbard's farm to pick some apples. Sadly, they didn't look so good. The sign in the store claims they taste good, but look bad from hail damage. Either way, we decided not to buy any.
I did see these sunflowers which made me think of my mom.
If I was planning on seeing her next weekend, I might have bought one. (Inside joke!)
Next stop was for ice cream in Clarksville, IN. I had bought a Groupon and we finally used it.
Had a great view of Downtown Louisville while eating.
Saw the old Colgate clock while trying to get back to the bridge to go back to KY. Stupid Indiana construction with there poorly marked detour signs.
Hello, LOUISVILLE!
Can you spot the bat?