Saturday, November 16, 2013

Can I Please Slow Down Time for a Month?

I'm beginning to feel like I'm spreading myself a little too thin... 

In September, Eric and I decided that I was going to work toward getting an MBA. So, I signed up for a GMAT prep class (since I haven't touched a math book since 2003) and it has been going great. I've even found a study buddy in the class and she and I get together 1-2 times a week now.

Classes in Provo are Wednesday from 6-9pm and Saturday from 9-12am. But then I got an offer to be part of a bell choir - which I love, and hadn't been a part of since 2004 - but they rehearse on Wednesday from 7-9pm. So, now I go to the Tuesday GMAT class in SLC, and bell choir on Wednesday night...also in SLC. I typically study with my friend on Thursday evenings, leaving only Mondays and Fridays available (Eric works Tues/Thurs/Sat evenings anyway), and something somehow manages to come up every week to fill those nights. 

This week I worked a full regular week and then spent 12 hours on a set today for a commercial... and while I was there, an opportunity opened up for me to work another Saturday day-gig... So I thought, "Well, if I work next Saturday, I can just go to the SLC Thursday version of Saturday's class," but then I realized "wait a minute..." I'll still be in San Francisco. Oh yeah, I leave tomorrow morning at 5am for a business trip in San Francisco and won't be back until Thursday night...already missing one GMAT class, one bell choir rehearsal, and a pre-screening of Hunger Games that my company is hosting. Even though I have a friend who'd gladly share her notes, should I really miss another Saturday class? But, broken down into hourly, that Saturday gig is almost 3 times what I make at my regular day job, so it's very, very, tempting. But now that I think about it, I don't think I'd have enough time once I got back from SF to go prep the equipment (I'd have to borrow some from a friend) and be ready by the morning. 

This past week, Eric and I also found out when our company parties are and they are both on days that I have bell choir performances, so I'm going to have to miss both of the work parties. I take the GMAT on December 14th, and I have bell choir performances the 10th, 13th, and 15th. But even if I didn't have those, my company part is on the 13th, so either way, I'd have something the day before I took the test. Also, the last day of the GMAT prep class is the morning of the 14th... or I could go to the Thursday night SLC one again that week... but I have to take it on the 14th because I leave for D.C. on the 16th!

Ugh!! Are you feeling stressed yet? Because I sure am!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Countdown: Plans

The countdown has begun. Eric leaves in 12 days. 

As silly as it sounds, it seemed like the day would never actually come. And part of me feels silly because he’s only going to be gone for four months – not a year like your average deployment length. It’s just Basic and AIT. But still, the longest we have ever been away from each other has been a few days! It’s going to be an adjustment for sure. Practice for the future, right? *sigh*

Luckily, the first 6 weeks I will be extremely busy. I will be traveling 2 separate times, and working many long days, so that time will hopefully go by quickly. But that crazy schedule ends on June 30th. Then there is all of July, August, and most of September. I did get a roommate for the summer though, so that’s nice. And I have my cat to keep me company. :P 

Everything that I have read about "family separation" says to keep as busy as possible. Don't let yourself ever end up just sitting, etc. So, I plan to keep myself as busy as possible!

One thing that I have always wanted to do, but never actually been able to solidify is volunteer at a children’s ward in a hospital. I don’t know why, but I just feel like it's something I need to do. I got really close to being able to do that when I lived in California, but the hospital required an iron clad agreement to specific days and specific hours that I unfortunately couldn’t commit to with a film/freelance lifestyle. 
There are currently two hospitals within a 5-mile radius of my house right now and perhaps by putting it on here, I will be more likely to actually follow through with it when I get back in July. 

I also really want to volunteer at the Bishop’s storehouse and/or the cannery. I don’t know a thing about how I go about doing that, but I think I would really enjoy volunteering at either place from time to time. I’ll have to look more into that this summer.

It has been a long time since I have written music…a long time since I’ve even had my keyboard out in the open. I think I may try to get back into that again this summer as well. Ooh! Maybe I’ll actually find time to try all those crazy things I’ve found on Pinterest! Haha. Okay, I haven’t actually been on that site in probably a month and a half, but I’ve already acquired plenty of “I want to try this” stuff to keep me busy for quite some time.

Oh and something else I plan to do as well… Our food bill will be cut in half or more this summer! Eric is a bottomless pit and we go through so much food! But with him gone this summer, we will most likely save a ton on regular groceries, but since that amount is in our budget and we have almost zero food storage (we went through most of it last year), I plan to take the excess each month and put it into food storage/emergency preparedness stuff. I’m actually quite excited about that.

The reason for my excitement on something like that is because Eric and I both have this impending feeling that we need to become as self-sufficient as possible as quickly as possible. Do any of you feel that way?? That is a big reason I have gotten so into essential oils and herbal remedies the last year or so. We are constantly told to be prepared, and if I’m around when that day comes that everything hits the fan, I’d like to be rather well-versed in alternative medicinal treatments that I can take care of my family without the assistance of doctors.  

Here I go again with my novels. Maybe that’s why I don’t write very often – they always turn into far more than a little blurb. But I am trying to get back into the habit of frequent entries, so bear with me. Too much info is better than no info at all, right?? :)

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Army, Jobs, Felines, and Houses

Wow… it has been almost four months since I’ve written. I don’t have any real reason, but I guess it just seems like nothing too terribly noteworthy has happened. Well, I got a job (in January), which is definitely noteworthy, but it’s not filled with crazy stories of adventure.
Oh, and we got a cat. YAY! And Eric officially joined the Army Reserves. Okay fine, so a lot of noteworthy stuff has happened and I’ve just been a lazy bum and haven’t written about it. I think I will become better at writing this summer, since Eric will be gone for Basic and AIT from May 21st to September 18th. L Our first long-term separation.

 Let’s see… Eric was officially sworn on January 27th I believe. I was SO bummed because due to some miscommunication, I wasn’t able to make it to that. I had had a fantastic job interview the day prior and they wanted me to come in that same day. I scheduled it for an earlier time, knowing Eric’s Army stuff would be later, but turns out, it was earlier… and I was in my interview. Dangit! But as bummed as I was, Eric said “don’t worry about it – go to your interview. What if this is the job you’ll actually get?” Good thing I did, too – that was the job that I got!

My first day was on the 30th of January and it has been great. It’s a company called MoneyDesktop and if any of you have heard of, it’s kind of like that… but a million times better. It’s not one that you can just go sign up for like Mint, though... it has to be offered through your financial institution. But it is fantastic. Job aside, their program alone saved our lives! I can FINALLY budget accurately now! I know exactly how much money is going into what category and how much is left, etc. There is also a debt program that uses the snowball effect to help you get out of debt as quickly as possible. The software is absolutely amazing.

The job itself is pretty easygoing. I think some people would get stressed out by it at times, but I MUCH prefer to be overloaded with stuff than sitting on my rump twiddling my thumbs. Those are actually the days I hate – when I am trying desperately to fill the time with something to do. The first month I was there I was absolutely swamped! They had been without an Office Manager for almost 2 months and were behind on a lot of things. The office was also incredibly unorganized, so I spent a LOT of time putting everything in order with my mad organizational skills. I even labeled all of the drawers and cupboards in their supply room and break room!

Turns out, not only am I the Office Manager, but I am also their travel agent, HR assistant, Payroll assistant, and in the beginning I had to take out the trash as well! Luckily, they have since established an official janitorial service. (Phew!) I have become VERY familiar with airport acronyms, the best and worst hotels, etc. I also get handed the very oddball projects that others in the office give me. Oh, and I run errands whenever necessary.

I think he's loving his new home!
Now, about our cat… basically, I love him. He is wonderful. We rescued him from a shelter and he is the sweetest (and weirdest) cat. I’m pretty sure he is convinced that he is part dog. He was so desperate for a friend that even when my sister-in-law brought her toy poodle (Chloe) over, Jasper immediately tried to play with Chloe. No hissing whatsoever – just immediate “play?!” mentality. It actually took Chloe longer to warm up to the idea than Jasper! …weird. He also greets me at the door every day when I come home. And he is my shoulder cat. If anyone picks him up, he will immediately climb to your LEFT (not right) shoulder… and if you try to put him on your right shoulder, 9 times out of 10, he will make sure he gets back to the left one. Haha.

Now, Eric is allergic to cats, so we knew that getting the cat in the first place would be risky. However, Eric really wanted me to have a friend while he was gone this summer, so he let me get a cat. :D Oh, by the way, his name is Jasper. Eric got bronchitis around the same time we got Jasper, so we still aren’t sure if it was because of the cat or not, but I’m happy to say that Eric is almost completely over his bout of bronchitis and now seems to be doing alright with the cat.  (We also bathe him once a week and I brush him several times a week).

In the last few weeks, we have ripped up our carpet and replaced it with the fake wood flooring. No, we don’t own our own house, but our landlord is awesome and has been wanting to update our place for quite some time, so when we bring up suggestions, he usually agrees to them (thanks to Eric’s parents, their history with house renovations, and the fact that they used to live in the ward and thus our landlord knows and trusts us Smiths!). Earlier this year, we ripped out the bottom half of the walls in the living room (it was nasty pale lavender wallpaper that wouldn’t come off), Eric and his dad put in new drywall, mudded it, textured it, and then Eric and I painted it. Once our landlord saw how much better just that looked, he got really excited about putting in the flooring (we had a baby blue carpet from the 70s) to make it look even better.

While they were finishing putting the floor in (we didn’t have to do that part, thankfully!), Eric and I found a sweet looking rug on KSL for $25 and we promptly picked that sucker up. It looks fantastic! I am actually excited to come home now! I actually want to be in the living room! It makes me smile every time I walk in.(I promise to take/post pictures of it next time!!)

Goodness, I really should get back into the habit of more frequent updating – otherwise, my posts turn into miniature novels! I have more to say, but I will leave it at this for now, since it is already novel-length. But in a nutshell, Eric joined the Army, he let me get a cat, I finally found a job, and our house looks a million times better now. Downside: Eric leaves in less than 2 weeks. :(

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Keys, Keys, We Have the Keys!

You know, I really hate nowadays that pretty much ALL cars have the stupid car key requiring the special chip in it in order to operate. When Eric and I first bought this car (2001 Honda Civic) last summer, one of the first things we went to do was make a copy of the key. The last car we had, it cost all of 1, maybe 2 dollars to do.

Much to our surprise, the cost to copy this key was going to be about $45. Yikes! Well, seeing as how we didn't have $45 to spare, we just shared it. And it had been working just fine for months until... that key, our precious only key vanished on Monday. The crazy thing is that Eric even puts the keys around his neck because I attached a lanyard to it (much easier to find with a lanyard attached). One minute they were there, and the next...poof! He still doesn't know how they managed to pull an abracadabra.

Well, that put us into quite the predicament. First of all, that is our only car. Second, with no spare key, we had no way of accessing it. Third, to get a replacement key for one requiring the security chip would cost about $150. Fourth, Eric's most recent paycheck was in there because he was planning on depositing it after class. So, not that we had money to spare anyway, the only money that we had was INSIDE the car.

He went to Lost and Found, but to no avail. UVU (and I'm willing to bet pretty much every college campus) doesn't allow cars to stay parked in the lot overnight and if a car is there, it will be towed. So we were able to get a one-night 'free pass' to let the car stay there. Surely someone would turn the keys in by tomorrow, right?

Guess again! So Tuesday evening rolls around and we have plans to tow the car to our driveway. There is a guy in our ward who owns a tow dolly (is that what it's called?) and Eric's dad has a big truck, and there are always plenty of willing hands to help out. But when Eric calls about the dolly, apparently one of his employees had borrowed it and wasn't sure when he'd be back. So, we're up a creek again.

Eric then calls UVU Police, explains the situation, and they tell us not to worry about it and that they will send out some sort of notice to those checking the lots to leave our car be. Sweet.

Now comes Wednesday. At this point, Eric is sure that the keys vanished while he was IN class, so he is hoping that one of his classmates has them and is waiting to return them during class. Last class of the day aaaand..... nothing. Gah!

Thursday. At this point, we have decided that it is a lost cause. If they keys were going to be found (and turned in), it would have happened by now. We plan to bite the bullet and call the locksmith when Eric gets out of class. His last class ends at 4 and we make one last effort to call and see if they have the keys. Say what? Someone just turned them in?! Amazing!

I text Eric (it's about 3 and he's still in class) and tell him the good news. But of course, there is a catch. For whatever reason, the Lost and Found closes AT 4 o'clock on the dot. NO! Eric's last class ends AT 4 and is off-campus. I call the Lost and Found lady again, explain to her the situation and she tells me that she'll wait for him. THANK YOU! Thank you Lost and Found lady, thank you! Luckily, Eric's class got out a few minutes early anyway, so he got there right at 4.

So, we now have our keys back and don't have to fork out an unnecessary $150. Hurray!

THANK YOU to the kind, dear person who took our keys to the UVU Lost and Found. I don't know you, but I love you. =D

Friday, January 6, 2012

Wishing, Waiting, Wanting

Well, through a series of very odd events, I have found the most perfect and absolute DREAM JOB of mine. Sadly, I don't actually have it... yet. :)

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to work for the Forensic Audio, Video, and Image Analysis Unit. Yeah, say that 5 times fast. Most people have never even heard of the unit, and I have a difficult time ever even finding information about it. I have wanted to work for the FBI since I was probably 14 and officially found out about this specific unit about 5 years ago.
About a year ago, a friend of mine knew I wanted to know more about the unit and what it specifically does, so since his dad is some major head honcho at FBI headquarters, he gave me his dad's information. His dad was extremely nice and accommodating, told me he would connect me with the right person and that was that. A few days later I get a call from him giving me the name and number of the *head* of the unit at FAVIAU (who knows if they actually use that acronym, but I'm gonna go with it). He told me that he had contacted her, gave her my information and I guess as a personal favor or something, asked her to call me. I was stoked.

A day or two later, I got a call from her. I was so mad because I knew it was from her but I was at work and we were currently filming something and I had a mixer around my waist and a boom pool above my head and there was NO way I was going to be able to answer it right then. BAH! Luckily, we were almost done and 10-15 minutes later, our crew was on our way to lunch. I called back immediately, but only got a busy signal. I listened to her voicemail and she said whom she got my info from and that she was leaving town in about an hour (from when she called) and would be gone for about a week so if I missed her that day, to try again in a week. I tried probably 4 or 5 more times within that hour but each time it was a busy signal and I was SO frustrated that I could not have answered when she initially called.

I tried calling the number several times in the next month, but each time I got that same wretched busy signal. FINALLY, after about a month and a half, the call *finally* went through... to her voicemail. ::sigh:: Well, at least it wasn't a busy signal! I left a message explaining why she hadn't heard from me earlier and told her that I was still extremely interested in talking with her and learning more about the unit, told her I would love and greatly appreciate it if she called me back, gave her my info, and hoped for the best. I never heard back from her. I think I tried again one more time, but eventually gave up. Plus, at that point, Eric was pretty certain on the military route and I knew that if he did military, I couldn't do FAVIAU. As much as I wanted to do it, it went on the back burner and I convinced myself that it was something I was no longer interested in.
But who was I kidding? Of COURSE I am still interested in it! I know it's not by any means a true portrayal of reality, but *all* of my favorite shows are government related shows. The job that Penelope Garcia has in Criminal Minds looks amazing to me. Analyzing audio and video is so much fun to me! Putting puzzles together and finally solving them is exhilarating! (but not jigsaw puzzles - sorry mom). NCIS, Numb3rs, Bones, etc. Those are all by far my favorite shows. Only, I wish I were actually doing that for real... for a living!


OKAY... Now to the reason I started this entry in the first place. So, as many of you may know, as much as I love freelance, I have been trying desperately to get out of it. I want a STEADY job that pays the same amount every 2 weeks so I can actually budget right! I want one with benefits so if I even *do* have to make a trip to the hospital or doctor, I won't have to worry about it costing me my first born. I have been looking for a while now and through a VERY strange order of events, I found this job... with FAVIAU... in Quantico...

I have to add that I was searching for government jobs in UTAH, and it came up with FBI jobs in VIRGINIA. And not just Virginia - Quantico!! And not just FBI - Forensic Audio, Video, and Image Analysis. The exact unit I have always wanted to work. Oh, *and* - the start date was that day (the 4th), and the closing day was in 6 days. Don't ask how... I have no idea. My mom jokingly said that it was divine intervention. She also said wouldn't mind one bit if I "had" to move back to Quantico. haha.

I had seen a posting about a year ago for that unit, but they were looking for a photography guru and at that time, I hadn't purchased my camera or any equipment yet and had no idea about any of it. As much as I wanted to apply, I knew I didn't stand a chance. Had it been audio and/or video, I know I could have at least made a dent in the application process, but photography was a lost cause.

ANYWAY... I quickly began putting together the application. I revamped my resume to cater toward video and spent several hours perfecting my cover letter. I sent it to my mom for revising (she's been my personal editor since I was 12!), and then to Eric's dad (he's a recruiter and reviews resumes and cover letters for a living) who gave me a few good pointers as well.

Next up: references. Originally, I just had local references. People I had worked with in the film arena of things and a couple of personal references (5 are required). But then Eric's dad brought up a great point - work your Virginia contacts. Duh! I can't believe I hadn't thought of that!

Immediately, Bishop MacKay's name came to mind. That man has been in more branches of government than I can count (and has more lives than a cat!). I know for a fact that he has either been officially employed by or worked with all three NSA, CIA, and FBI. Currently he's with DIA (Defense Intelligence Agency) at Quantico (I think it's Quantico - it's with USMC so I'm assuming). Anyway, I knew he would be a fantastic reference to have, so I called him up to ask and before I could even finish my request, he interrupted and said "Absolutely!" He gave me all of the information the application required for references, and wished me the best of luck. I'm pretty sure he is one of the best possible people to have as a top reference. Hopefully it'll work to my advantage.

The other references are people I have worked with in film along with my best friend Mary because she told me a few months ago that I should use her as a reference because she'd talk me up in every which way. haha. Plus, I've known her for close to 15 years now (wow!) and they always like references of people you have known for a long time.

Once I actually submitted all the pieces of my application, I was taken to this massively long questionnaire. I was pleasantly surprised that I could answer "yes" to almost every bit of experience they were asking about. THEN... this was even better. The last section asked for any letters of praise I had received from any former government positions. This is was one of those one-in-a-million advantages to being a pack rat.

In 2003 and 2004 I worked for the Department of Defense in Alexandria, VA. I was just a summer intern straight out of high school, but I impressed the heck out of them. At the end of each year, I was given this fancy schmancy letter talking up all of my achievements while in that position, presented to me in this nice folder thing, signed by the head of the department. I thought they were cool, so I saved them and filed them away. BUT since I am a very *organized* pack rat, I knew exactly where these certificates/letters were, so I ran downstairs, pulled them out of my file, grabbed my camera, took a picture of each of them, realigned them in Photoshop, and uploaded them to my application. Every little bit helps, right?

So I am hoping - and praying, and crossing every finger and toe - that I will actually have a shot at this job. The application is 100% completed and submitted and now comes the painstakingly awful period of waiting...and waiting...

Wish me luck!!!!

(By the way, in case you were wondering, Eric knows that I like - and prefer - working and told me that if I were to get this job and wanted to do it forever, he would have no problem not doing military and being a stay-at-home dad instead. Isn't he the best?!!)

Friday, December 30, 2011

I'll Be Home for Christmas

Well, through the determination of my mother, Eric and I managed to make it home for Christmas!!! And by home, I mean Virginia. :) We got there on Christmas Eve (plane tickets were $100 cheaper to fly on Christmas Eve!!) around 2pm and a few hours after we got home, my mom and I did our traditional shopping while Eric was held hostage by my youngest 2 siblings. We got back from the store and left almost immediately after for my grandma's house for our traditional Christmas Eve stuff. Jasion and Tashia and their kids were there -- and so was Tashia's chicken salad. :D I cannot tell you how much I missed not having that last Christmas Eve! We visited, read different Christmas stories, the original story in Luke, and then sang a bunch of songs. Eric had everyone in earshot laughing when he sang his Elvis impersonation of Blue Christmas, accompanied by Jason. My mom said "he sounds exactly like him!" all the younger cousins were giggling the entire time.

Since Christmas was on Sunday this year, we had church before any stocking opening or present opening. My parents normally have church at 8am (yuck!) but because it's Christmas and there is only Sacrament Meeting on Christmas, they pushed it to 9 (thank you!). Quantico ward had an absolutely fantastic Christmas program! But then again, anything with Gerald Fowkes' cello playing is bound to be fantastic. Haha jk there was more to it than that.... but I am most definitely a sucker for any good cello playing. Rachel also sang a solo and it sounded great! I think it may have even been the first time I heard her sing a solo since she was maybe 12! Unfortunately, all of her high school choir concerts were while I was in Utah - even the Christmas concerts were well before I went home for Christmas. So it was fun to finally see her perform!

The next week consisted of lots of quality time with the family. We spent a good majority of the time playing games and stuff. I had fully intended on donating my hair again (it was plenty long enough), but the first thing my mom and sister said as I got off the plane was "Your hair is so long!!! and so pretty!! You CAN'T cut it!" So Rachel convinced me to try a new look/cut instead. She cut off about 4 inches and added a lot of layers. I still have no idea what to do with it though, and it usually just ends up in a ponytail. (I am a retard when it comes to hair - all the way down, or all the way up is about the extent of my abilities).

The fateful day came and we had to go home. Thursday evening my mother, littlest sister, Logan, Eric, and I piled into the car and headed to Reagan. We said our goodbyes, Eric and I went in to check in and as we do, the guy helping us says, "Oh... it looks like your flight has been overbooked and we are looking for volunteers to give up their seats. We will put you on the next available flight and you each will get a $400 voucher toward flying with us at a later date. Are you guys interested?" DUH! We snagged those vouchers, called my mom (who had stopped with the kids to watch the planes land and take off) and she hurriedly came and picked us back up!

Our initial flight was to leave at 6pm Thursday, and we were rescheduled for 6am the next morning... and for that 12 hour difference, we got $800 worth of plane tickets!! Why can't that happen every time!? :P So we enjoyed one more evening of fun and games - and Rachel's amazing sesame chicken. Mmm.

Anyway, we're back home now and back to real life. Meh. Although, the one nice thing about being back is that we may actually get some substantial sleep tonight, since I feel like I haven't slept in a week! haha.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Appendectomy?? I Think Not!!

Day 1 (Nov 1st)

5:45am - I am awoken by the most excruciating pain in my lower right abdomen. It hurt so bad that it took almost 10 minutes just to rotate from my side to my back. I prayed that it would just go away, and managed to fall back asleep.
8:50am - I wake up once again and the pain is still there. I'm afraid to move, and really hoping it is just the worst ovarian cyst rupture I have ever had - anything but appendicitis!!
10:30am - Not quite as unbearably painful as earlier, but still hurts to move. Since I have nothing going on today, I decide to stay in bed... on my back... without moving.
1:15pm - The pain has been here for almost 8 hours and I start to freak out a little. I'm pretty certain at this point that it is, in fact, appendicitis.
1:17pm - I call my mom and express my concerns. She gives me a nurse advice number to call through insurance.
1:20pm - I call this number and they look up the policy... and inform me that it was terminated on 13 September.
1:22pm - I call my mom back and tell her what they told me and she gets mad at them and said that it was reinstated on the 14th and to call my dad.
1:25pm - I call my dad and tell him what's going on and he then realizes that he forgot to put me back on the plan and begins making the necessary calls.
1:25-2:30ish - I begin to increasingly freak out with the idea of a necessary surgery, no insurance, and $35,000+ to get my appendix removed (without insurance).
2:45 - I call Eric in tears and ask him to come home as soon as he can (he was at work).
3pm - Insanity ensues and I have 4 different people trying to call me at the same time. (my mom, my dad, Eric, and Eric's mom).
3:05pm - Eric is on his way home, and my dad calls to tell me that I am officially back on the insurance and it should be okay... but it won't show up until tomorrow... so hopefully it'll still be good for today.
3:10 - Eric calls our home teacher to come and give me a blessing.

Okay, enough with the time stamps. Our home teacher came over to help Eric give me a blessing and after the blessing he said "You know, you should talk to my wife - she's beaten appendicitis twice now!" "...Beaten it?" I asked. "Yeah, she used all sorts of crazy herbs and homeopathic stuff, but it worked!" Well this has definitely sparked my interest. He gave me his wife's phone number and as soon as he left, I called her. (Mind you, as soon as the blessing was finished, Eric and I had planned to go straight to the hospital.) I told her what was going on, she said remarks such as "Oh you poor thing!" and "That's awful!" and told me the first and more important thing is to not eat a thing. Luckily, since the thought of an impending surgery was on my mind, I had abstained from any and all foods all day anyway. Check. She also said to drink tons and tons of herbal tea - especially peppermint and the likes. Conveniently, I have a whole box of peppermint tea (herbal) in my cupboard, so I start on my journey of a tea-only diet.

About an hour later she comes over with three different combinations of herbs and a reusable tea bag to make the teas in, gives me about 10 pages worth of reading on the homeopathic solution to appendicitis and is on her way. I read the material, am fascinated by it, and then brace myself for the call to my mother where I will tell her that I am *not* going to the hospital yet. Surprisingly, she took it quite well. (yes, I know I am jumping between past and present tenses... deal with it. :) )

The next few days were awful, because I pretty much had LOTS of tea. The evening of Day 2 I finally had half an apple and it was the most glorious food I had ever tasted. The morning of Day 3 I have a very light soup, but still eat next to nothing the whole day. Day 4 I am starting to feel more like myself and actually eat a bit of solid food - some toast. By the evening of Day 4 I feel weak, but almost completely back to normal.

Eric's dad calls and invites us to the BYU basketball game that night and I am SO sick of being in the house and can finally move around again without Eric's help that I tell Eric I want to go. He is obviously concerned about this and it takes a bit of convincing that I really am up for going out, but he eventually gives in and his dad picks us up a few hours later.

The walk from the parking lot (the football parking lot across the street from the baseball stadium) to the Marriott Center was unexpected and a bit strenuous for me, but once we got to our seats, I was cautious, but fine. I even ran into a good friend and her fiance (whom I had not yet met) while we were there, so I was glad that I went.

I still ate VERY carefully the next several days to make sure I didn't aggravate it again, but I think it is officially gone!! Hurray! SO... if you ever think you have appendicitis but don't want to go to the hospital and have an appendectomy, call me and I'll walk you through it step-by-step! :D

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Getting Older...?

Okay, so I know that I am by no means old, but it's still weird when people you grew up watching suddenly grow up too. haha. The most recent example of this is Melissa Joan Hart. I grew up watching "Clarissa Explains it All" (which, to clear anything up, no my name is NOT Clarissa and please do not ever ask me again to 'explain it all' (kids on my street growing up teased me about that ALL the time)) and "Sabrina the Teenage Witch." But those ended and I haven't really seen her in anything until now and suddenly she went from 20 to 30 lickety-split!

I was browsing available shows on Netflix instant play (we don't have any TV channels) and one called "Melissa and Joey" popped up. I thought, "Hey, why not?" I mean, I loved Melissa Joan Hart as a kid, let's see how this show is. It's kind of like a weird mix between Who's the Boss and Two and a Half Men. Melissa's character ends up in charge of her niece and nephew after her sister and brother-in-law are sent to jail, but she's a busy working woman and can't juggle both and ends up hiring a "manny" (male nanny) to help out. So it's like Who's the Boss in the sense that he's pretty much the housekeeper, but Two and a Half Men in the sense that neither of them have a clue how to raise children.

I will admit, it is a pretty funny show. It does have more innuendo than I would like, but it is definitely way toned down to most shows these days. Probably comparable to Still Standing or Grounded for Life... (though I still miss ones like Family Matters, Step by Step, and Sister Sister, where innuendo wasn't necessary). I have only watched a few episodes, but I have already been literally laughing out loud with no one else home.

Joey Lawrence in "Blossom"
By the way, the male nanny is Joey Lawrence, from "Blossom" and "Brotherly Love", whom I also have a hard time seeing as essentially a 'father figure' when all I can remember him saying was "Whoa!" (a clip would make it so much better) as a goofy teenager! I love the banter between the two, though. And he does a pretty good job as the pseudo dad.

I'm curious though, if they ever save and essentially "reuse" old sets (or parts of old sets) from sitcoms, because their set is like a combination of Reba and Boy Meets World. But that thought had absolutely zero relevance to the rest of the entry...

Anyway, another short and sweet entry. I find the show rather amusing and seeing as how it is still currently on the air, I hope it actually lasts more than a couple seasons...!

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Day that Wouldn't Die

Oh my goodness days like today are never fun. However, they are fun to tell when all is said and done...

So today was my "big" interview (frankly, just excited that I finally GOT an interview). Eric took the bike (oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I let Eric get a motorcycle a few weeks ago - I'll have to blog about that one later) so I would be able to use the car to get to the interview. I spent a good portion of the morning prepping for the interview, and since I had some time to kill, I even painted my toenails. I got dressed in some business attire (yuck), and headed out. I got about 2 miles onto the freeway and the car spiked up to the red zone and had pretty much completely overheated. NOT good.

I turned on my hazard lights and practically coasted to the next exit (which was luckily quite close). There was an IHOP right off the freeway, so I parked the car there and then frantically called Eric. Frankly, I was quite surprised that Eric even answered. His last class gets out at 2:15, it was about 2:45 and I thought for sure he'd be on his bike and not be able to answer. But luckily, he did.

I frantically asked, "Where are you? The car overheated, my interview starts in 15 minutes and I have no way of getting there..." He had stopped at a shop not even 5 minutes where I was, so he was able to get there by about 2:50. However, our only other mode of transportation is the bike, and we only have one helmet... AND like I said, I was in business attire... and open-toed dress sandals... and a short-sleeved shirt, of course. But thanks to the fact that Eric practically lives in the car during school (wow, I never thought I'd actually be grateful for that), he had some pretty heavy duty slippers in the backseat (still not ideal, but better than sandals!). There was also a jacket back there. So, I took off my sandals, stuffed them in my purse, put on the slippers and jacket, and looked pretty ridiculous.

Eric got there, gave me his helmet, and found a baseball cap in the back of the car to wear. (I'm pretty sure our car is like Mary Poppins' bag...) I slung my purse around me like a side bag, and off we went. Mind you, this is my first time ever on his bike... and apparently it does NOT like having two people on it (it's an older bike, designed more for one person). It complained all the way there. And to make thing worse, the bike is mainly meant for around town - not freeway - so we had to take University Avenue... and I kid you not, I have never in my LIFE hit so many of those lights red. It was absolutely ridiculous.

Okay, so this really has nothing to do with my entry, but this describes about how I felt for a good portion of the day!
We FINALLY got to the company building and and I was getting off the bike, my phone rang and it was the lady waiting for me (I had called beforehand to let her know what was going on and that I would be a few minutes late) calling to reschedule. But before she had a second to say that, I answered and said "I'm here! I'm walking in right now. I'm so sorry!"

So she had me come on in, and could immediately see how frazzled I was so she asked me if I wanted to take a moment to catch my breath and I told her that I was fine, but asked her if my hair looked okay because I had to wear the helmet and a bathroom was conveniently right there so I ran in real quick, did a double check, ran out again, took a deep breath, and tried to relax. (Yes, I meant for that to be a run-on sentence because that's how I felt)

She took me to the guy who was interviewing me and I apologized to him and he was extremely understanding of it, said "these things happen" and said "don't worry - your message got to the right place so we knew what was going on." Oh thank goodness.

The interview itself went pretty well. I thought it was interesting that about halfway through the interview, he said "You know, I'll be honest with you... when I first saw your application, I thought "well that's a definite no.... but then I looked at it again and said, 'well, maybe...hmm...' " Not exactly the most comforting thing to be told, but at the same time, I completely understand. Like I said before, most people in an office setting, can't understand how film and freelance can relate at all, so I was just relieved that he took the time to consider it for a change.

I felt like I answered pretty well though, when he asked me how my experience in freelance and film could help him/the company. I told him, "Well, I may not have gained my experience in an office setting, but it is all still there. For example, because I am freelance, I am essentially my own business. I have to track all of my expenses, keep all of my receipts, file all of my contracts, pay stubs, etc. I have to be a go-getter or else I don't work. On the films that I am a mixer, I am head of my department and go to the pre-production meetings to represent my 'unit.' I have to find people for my team and instruct them accordingly."
The application also mentioned needing the ability to be able to work with 'high profile' people, whether it is CEOs or just really important clients, so I also added, "and in film I am constantly dealing with high profile actors and directors and know how to handle myself around important people." I mentioned working with Danny Boyle on 127 Hours and how it didn't phase me at all. (Honestly, I think that's why I have done so well in the film industry is because 'famous' people to me are just any other person...just more people know who they are. I don't get star struck or tongue-tied at all). All in all, he seemed very impressed with my answer. :D

So the interview ends and Eric is downstairs waiting for me. I slip on the crazy slippers and jacket again, he hands me the helmet, and off we go. We get back to the car, and there is a gas station about 50 yards away, so we drive the car to their parking lot and go inside to get some coolant (we were pretty certain that was the issue). We buy the coolant, Eric holds it in his arm, against his jacket, and as we walk outside we realize it has a puncture wound on the side and has leaked all over Eric and his jacket. So he holds his finger over the mysterious puncture wound while I run inside and ask the clerk if he has any duct tape. Of course, no duct tape. He tries to just give us another thing of coolant, but whattya know... it was the last one. The clerk is nice enough to try and give us a refund, but of course he can only give a refund if we paid in cash, and we paid with a debit card. Lame. So we have to go back tomorrow morning when a manager is there to approve the debit card refund.

After that fiasco, we decide to go to Wal-Mart instead (it's within walking distance of this gas station). We go in, buy yet another container of coolant, and fill the car. Yeah, pretty sure there is a leak somewhere, because we just filled the coolant a month or so ago and the car took more than half of the massive container we bought. PS, we JUST bought this car end of June and it now has a leak, doesn't start half the time (we have to wait a couple minutes and try again), and for some unexplainable reason, the driver's side seat belt oftentimes needs to practically be jammed in several times before it actually locks. (and it was working in tip-top shape when we bought it). I'm telling you, I am cursed with cars and anything electronic.

Anyway, we did eventually make it home... and neither of us cared to go anywhere the rest of the evening! Hopefully it was worth it and I will get called back for a 2nd interview...!!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Don't Mind If I Do

So I have been applying for jobs left and right lately... but to no avail. The problem with my 'field of work' is that it is such a small niche, that no one else seems to even consider it experience. ...especially when it comes to any sort of office job. But I have still been applying for those types of jobs because hey, I type 120 wpm and that's got to be worth something, right?

So yesterday I found a possibility that I actually seemed to qualify for quite well... the only thing that I didn't have was a shorthand speed of 120wpm, so I just included in the cover letter that I may not have shorthand experience, but I do type 120wpm the good 'ol fashioned way. Well, I suppose shorthand is more 'old fashioned' than typing, but it is pretty much obsolete these days. Eh, semantics.
I don't know about you, but this looks a heck of a lot more like Arabic than any English wording! 

Anyway, they must have liked something in my resume if they called me for an interview less than 24 hours after sending my application! I have an interview Monday at 3pm. Wish me luck! :)