Mindy Memories

Friday, March 31, 2006

Should be a beautiful weekend

Well, we're going to have rain for part of tomorrow, but the temperature is going to be in the 60s and 70s this weekend -- rain or not, I like that. I can sit in my livingroom and stitch with the windows open. I love doing that when it's raining. I'll be doing this after I get groceries and do some cleaning around here, and after getting some exercise in. That won't take all day, though. I should be able to finish Guardian Angel this weekend, as I'm only filling in the white on the wings now and that's it, and I've already finished more than half of that.

I'm going to see if I can use the graphic designer's scanner at work while she's at lunch so I can scan my recent finishes and WIPs. I miss updating my online album and my blog. It's always nice to see things change. I plan on getting a digital camera sometime soon, but it won't be THAT soon.

We may see V for Vendetta this weekend, I'm not sure. I've heard a lot of good things about it and I think it looks pretty interesting. Since I now have my April SEPTA pass, I may take some time and go down into the city Sunday and go to the art museum. It's been a while, and I know they used to let you in free before a certain time on Sundays. I've already paid for my train pass, so I could do the whole thing for free.

Speaking of going downtown, I discovered a great little Civil War museum downtown, only a few blocks from where I work. I'm going to see if they need any volunteers to help with data entry, website changes, or anything. I don't know enough to give "the talk" to people when they come in. I was happy to find that the guide was impressed about how much I did know about the Civil War. I've always been big on it, especially the Battle of Gettysburg, and I guess a lot of people don't know who Meade was. I also think I'm going to join one or two of the local Civil War organizations that meet at the museum. This has been another good thing that came from getting this job -- it gets me into the city more and I'm discovering things I probably wouldn't have otherwise, as I avoid driving there when I can and often just didn't feel like spending the money on transportation to go down there.

Speaking of work, it's going very well. I feel like I'm a good fit. A woman two doors down from me does needlepoint and absolutely loves my Mirabilia Christmas Elegance that I have hanging in my office. I gave her the Mirabilia website if she wanted to look at others, warning that the pictures don't do them justice. I think I'll send her the link for the Mirabilia/L&L Gallery, as those pictures come out better. She's thinking about converting to needlepoint.

My weight loss has pretty much been put on hold for March, but I didn't gain anything. I'm walking between 1 and 2 miles a day between the train station and work, but haven't been doing a lot of other exercising and my eating hasn't exactly been stellar. Getting groceries tomorrow will help.

Monday, March 27, 2006

OK, this is a bit much

I have nothing against pregnant women or mothers -- heck my mom was a "mom" and most of my closest friends are moms. However, I really think this is taking things over the edge.

If I'm not mistaken, the whole idea of the carpool lane is to "reward" people who carpool and therefore release a little less crap into the environment. This does not include a pregnant women. As somebody on one of my boards has already mentioned, if we use this logic of a pregnant woman's "right to count her unborn child as a passenger," shouldn't that also mean that she should pay for two at a buffet table, or pay for two when she goes to a movie? I don't think that will fly, will you?

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Got through week 1

I got through week one of the new job and am very glad I made the decision. I've been handed over control of one on of the programs and next week will probably get another one or two. There's one that's huge that I'll probably get in pieces and with some hand-holding, which is perfectly OK with me. The one that is in my hands now is Career Solutions 55+, which helps people over the age of 55 find work -- people who are unemployed or underemployed, coming out of retirement for whatever reason, etc.

It's a good thing I got this job. For the second time in less than six months, I can't get into my Monster account. I know I had the right username/email and password, but checked the "forgot password" link anyway. I was told there was no account under that email account, which is complete BS. This happened to me a few months back and I had to start over again. I contacted customer service at Monster, which was laughable and useless. Luckily, this time I don't need to keep it up so I'll just let it be. I think perhaps they are running out of storage space and if you have a free account it gets "glitched" every so often and goes bye-bye. I had updated the resume maybe two months ago, so it wasn't out of date. Maybe I need to reread their rules and see if they make you update it more often before they delete it, but I think that's what's happening. It's like when we had AOL way back when and it would boot you off every so often and say the connection was lost for an "unknown reason." I really think it was that they were getting overloaded so if you had been on for a while, you got disconnected. I'm normally not a conspiracy theory type, but some of this stuff makes me wonder...

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

It's all about me

Stolen from Tinkerty Tonk

What time did you get up this morning? 5:00AM

Diamonds or pearls? Diamonds.

What was the last film you saw at the cinema? The Matador

What is your favorite TV show? Still Seinfeld

What did you have for breakfast? Zone Perfect Bar

What is your middle name? Jane

What is your favorite cuisine?, Whatever I can cook and not burn

What food do you dislike? lima beans.

What is your favorite potato chip? Baked Lays

What is your favorite CD at the moment? So many... I'll go with Queensryche's Operation Mindcrime, now that I have it on CD years after wearing out the tape

What kind of car do you drive? 1995 Buicke Regal GranSport

Favorite sandwich? BLT

What characteristics do you despise? Lying for attention (and I'm talking BIG lies!)

What are your favorite clothes? my jeans and "dressy" t-shirts

If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? St. Petersburg, Russia

What color is your bathroom? That 70s blue and pink tile (blech)

Favorite brand of clothing? Don't really have one, but I do like Levi's jeans, and Sag Harbor work clothes

Where would you want to retire to? San Francisco (yeah, like THAT's going to happen)

Favorite time of day? late night

Where were you born? Upstate NY

Favorite sport to watch? Swimming

Coke or Pepsi? Coke

Are you a morning person or night owl? I prefer to be a night owl, but since I'm working have to be a morning person

Any new and exciting news you'd like to share with everyone? Same stuff I've been sharing -- got a new job, lost about 15 pounds.

What did you want to be when you were little? Teacher

What is a favorite childhood memory? I actually have quite a few. Most revolve around family vacations -- Mystic, CT and Gettysburg, PA. Funny, I remember more about Gettysburg than I do about going to Disney.

What are the different jobs you have had in your life? farm worker, babysitter, fast food worker and manager, video store clerk, graphic designer, marketing assistant

Nicknames? Lots, but I'll only put one here: bogoo

Any piercings? One in each ear.

Eye color? Brown

Ever been to Africa? No.

Ever been toilet papering? Yes

Been in a car accident? Yes.

Favorite day of the week? Sunday

Favorite restaurant? Used to be Luigi's, but it's now a pizza place :(

Favorite flower? Morning Glory

Favorite ice cream? Chocolate Chip Mint

Favorite fast food restaurant? McDonald's

Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? Talbot's or a huge cross stitch store

Bedtime? Depends, between 9 and 12

Last person(s) you went to dinner with? Tim

What are you listening to right now? Watching "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

What is your favorite color? Blue

How many tattoos do you have? None


Been a few days, and I started my job on Monday. I think I'm really going to like it. I work with five women who are very intelligent, friendly and funny. I'm trying not to feel intimidated -- not by them, per se, but because they know so much about all these programs and I have a lot to learn. I know it's to be expected, and I've learned quite a bit in just the past few days, but it will be a while.

Today I found out the programs I'll be working with and am very happy. I'll be doing the marketing and PR for our Welfare to Work programs, Career Strategies (fee-based career counseling), Career Solutions 55+ (helps un- and under-employed seniors find work, for free), and a program that helps refugees and asylees gain employment, learn English, gain interview skills and learn the differences between cultures. I'm really excited about this, as I think it's important to help give people the skills they need in order to better themselves. So many people out there want to do better, but don't know where to start. Yes, we all know there are people out there who want to take advantage of some of the systems out there, but I think most people truly want what's best for them and their families, if they have one. They just don't know how.

My exercising and diet have been a bit off for the past week, but I'm holding my own. I'm trying to get a schedule that works around Tim's shift work. I'm finding that planning to workout in the morning just doesn't work for me most of the time. I don't really wake up until I get a nice shower, and I'm not going to shower twice in the morning.

I'm watching "O Brother, Where Art Thou" on TNT right now, and wondering why I haven't bought in on DVD yet. I just love this movie, and the music. I have the soundtrack around here somewhere.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Good Saturday

After finishing Christmas Flourishes last month, I've been in a bit of a stitching slump. As of this week, it looks like I'm back :) I've been working on Deepest Love and started Mermaid of the Pearls. I wasn't planning on starting MOTP, but I bought some beautiful fabric from Brandy on the 123 board and it is perfect for this design. Since we at the Mirabilia board have decided that March is mermaid month, I felt *forced* (lol) to work on more than one mermaid. I love Nora's mermaids and just can't get enough of them.

Somehow I lost another pound last week, even with the mall trip. I guess I did OK most of the week so that one day didn't kill me. I'm still getting used to the idea that eating sensibly with a treat here and there is not cheating, just normal eating. I think that's the toughest thing about losing weight -- many of us lose weight but we are in "diet" mode when we do it and are thinking that when we're done dieting we can do what we want, and that's how the weight (and then some) creeps back on. I'm thinking of this as a change in lifestyle, which is why I'm happy with losing a pound a week, or even averaging less. I figure if I lose it a little slowly it should be easier to keep it off. That's my theory, anyway.

I originally set a goal of losing 16 more pounds by Easter. So far I've only lost 5, but that's OK, keeping with my theory above. I can still lose a few more by Easter. I told Mo that I wanted to work walking and some exercise into some of the things we do while I'm visiting, if possible, so I should be getting good exercise. I think one of the days I'm there she's going to be working, so I'll be free to roam around the area where she works, which I believe is in a very hilly area and near Lombard. Walking those hills will definitely be good exercise!

Dana came over this afternoon and watched Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire with me. She hadn't seen it yet and really liked it. One of these days I need to read those books, but I have so many other books ahead of them. Yes, I know I keep saying that.

Well, Friday was my last day at work. It didn't really hit me until I was driving home and I teared up a little. It's so frustrating to feel that the only way I can excel is by leaving a place where I like working, for the most part. Oh well, I'm not going to second guess myself -- I KNOW this is the right thing. Doing the right thing for myself isn't always easy. I mean, my quest to get healthy isn't easy, but I know it's something I need to do.

I'm starting the new job on Monday, so I'm really looking forward to that vacation at Easter since I didn't take any time off between jobs. They've already been very nice to me and I know I'm going to like it there. In fact, I got an email yesterday that today there was a wellness walk if I was interested, although she knew it was late notice. If I hadn't already made plans with Dana, I would have gone as it fits in perfectly for what I'm doing. I did say that I'd love to get involved with the next one they do. It would be great if they do these a lot, and they may have a wellness program I'm not aware of or forgot about -- cool!

Thursday, March 16, 2006


Well, I didn't do too bad yesterday. The staff at work was rewarded with a limo ride to the King of Prussia Mall (huge place) where they gave us lunch at the Cheesecake Factory and money for shopping. I ordered the grilled salmon with broccoli and substituted carrots for the fries. These were the biggest servings I've ever seen! I ate some for lunch and had the rest for dinner, but it was probably more than two servings. It was darn good though.

Of course, you can't go to the Cheesecake Factory and not get cheesecake! I was full so didn't have any at lunch but brought home two pieces of the chocolate coconut cream cheesecake, one for me and one for Tim. I ate that whole piece last night after dinner and don't regret it one bit LOL! I rarely eat cheesecake or anything that decadent, and it was fantastic!

I had $150 to spend and bought some stuff at Victoria's Secret because some of my current unmentionables are too big after losing a little weight. I also bought a huge Honeydew Yankee Candle -- love Yankee Candle. I then bought two pairs of pants, two dressy t-shirts and a tourqouise blouse at Coldwater Creek. The mall had a $25 off certificate if I spent more than $100 there, and then the store gave me a really nice big tote for spending over $100 -- $100 that wasn't even my money! Works for me :) I spent more on clothes than I normally would for what I got, but they are high quality and it was free money and meant for that. I got clothes I can wear to work this summer -- the pants are a linen blend so nice and light, got them in bone and in black. I bought a black v-neck and a fuschia v-neck, and a pretty tourquoise button-up blouse.

Now I'm looking forward to starting the new job on Monday and going away for Easter. I'm so glad I was able to keep that trip, especially since I'm not taking a break between jobs.

So, today one of the agents is buying me lunch and I'm going to go with a chicken salad from Chili's. I'm also exercising in about 10 minutes after I get off the computer and before work. That will help me stay in control a little.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Don't have a lot of time to write this morning before I need to get ready for work, but wanted to post some stuff.

1. Still working on my weight. I'm down a total of 13 pounds but I think I look like I've lost more than that. I need to get a new picture up. I technically only weight 3 pounds less than the last picture, but I look a lot thinner and I'm wearing clothes I haven't worn in years. The last few days my exercising and food haven't been perfect, but I'm doing OK. As long as my general trend is downward, I'm happy.

2. Only a few more days until I start my new job. I'm excited, sad and nervous at the same time. I already have three meetings set up, two during my first week LOL. I think I'm really going to like this place and hope that I can catch on as quickly as I should.

3. Today the staff at my current job is going to the King of Prussia Mall for half a day. Harris gave us a staff award and a limo is picking us up at the office at 10:30, taking us to the mall where we're eating at the Cheesecake Factory, then we'll go shopping in the mall until 3:00 and get back about 3:30. The lunch is paid for, and we're getting gift certificates for shopping. Very nice. That's what I mean about the people -- there are very good people working there and Harris is good about showing appreciation, I just needed more. That probably sounds very selfish, but it's the truth.

4. One thing I like about the new job is all the holidays. I'm going to get normal holidays, which you just don't get in the financial industry, plus Jewish holidays. I'm still going to visit my sister over Easter because I get Passover and Good Friday off and will only have to worry about that Monday, for which I will probably not get paid. I can do this without touching future vacation days, while where I was working I would have had to take 3 vacation days for the same trip. I think I'll also miss less work due to migraines. The headaches started creeping up on me again in the last year, and I think it's because I had less time off than I was used to. I probably sound like a wimp, but I need time off as I internalize all stress and it causes my migraines. I think eating better and exercising is helping a little and will continue to help, but sometimes I just need down time. If that means I can't get a job making major bucks because I can't handle the schedule, so be it.

I think that's everything for now. Good thing I'm a fast typist. Now I have about 30 minutes to get in the shower, get dressed, fix my face (rarely fix my hair lol) and get my butt out the door. Luckily, I can move quickly when I need to and don't put on a ton of makeup :)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

How am I going to get it all done?

Of course, the answer to that is -- I won't. LOL. Seriously, I'm going to get as much as possible done before my last day next Friday and leave as much direction behind as I can, but there's only so much time I have. I've offered to be available on a contract basis if they need me for anything, in case it takes a while to get a replacement. They may or may not take me up on it, but I thought it only fair to offer, and I could always use a little extra for my car fund.

I haven't had much to show off stitching-wise lately. I hit a bit of a slump after I finished Christmas Flourishes. I've been exercising a lot, but still not stitching afterwards when I have time. I worked on Deepest Love a little at Karri's house during the Oscars, but not much. Every so often I go through a little slump that sometimes lasts a month, but I'll get back into the swing of things soon. I know that my main focus is getting my health in line and the new job, for now.

I've been weighing myself the last few days but my official weigh-in isn't until Friday. It looks like I'm down close to a total of 15 pounds. I'll see what it says Friday morning, but I'm very happy about that. I was at that -10 point for a while, I think because I stayed at that weight for a while before. I seem to be moving pretty good now. My main problem is eating enough calories to keep my metabolism going with the exercising I'm doing, but not too many. I think I do better when I in the upper range of my calorie range (1550), or even a little higher once in a while, then when I try to stick to 1200-1300 calories. I've been having a bit of an eat-a-thon lately, but it hasn't been overly high and I've been exercising. Guess I'm doing something right, but I'll probably have to take it down a little at some point so that I continue to lose.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Oscars, exercise, and work

I spent the night at Karri's last night. We planned for me to come by in the afternoon and we watched the Oscars. Since they go late (not as late as they used to, though), and she lives 10 minutes from work, we figured it was just easier. I actually slept pretty well on their daybed downstairs - very cozy.

I didn't see a lot of the movies nominated, but wasn't overly suprised with the results, except for Crash winning best movie. I've heard it was great and still need to see it, but thought for sure that Capote or Brokeback Mountain were going to win. I wonder if the voting for both canceled each other out?

There certainly were a lot of very heavy movies nominated this year. Most of them I do plan on seeing, I just can't afford to go to the movies as much as I'd like -- who can? The industry has been complaining about how much revenues were down in 2005 in the theaters. Well, maybe the prices are getting so outrageous that it's simpler and cheaper for us to rent or buy the DVD when it comes out and we can watch it at home. I love going to the movies, but it's just too darn expensive -- especially with so many people who, while not out of work, are underemployed. This isn't the 90s and the economy is still in a bit of a slump. I also don't go by the unemployment numbers the government gives us, as that just counts people who are receiving unemployment payments, not those who can no longer get the money but are still looking for work.

Anyway, enough of that weird tanget. Don't know where that came from.

I ate crazy yesterday. Karri's oldest went back to college today, so yesterday Karri's DH was cooking cookies and brownies for her to take back with her, and there were plenty extra for them. I had three cookies and one brownie. See, this is why I don't bake much anymore, as much as I like it. If I bake it, there's only Tim and I to eat it, then I wonder why I'm round. So, I'm doing better today, exercising and eating better.

Work is going OK, but I'm trying to figure out how I can get all that I need to get done in the next two weeks. I'll do what I can, and I have also offered to do contract work if they need me. A little extra money wouldn't hurt, as long as it could be at night or on the weekend.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

I got the job!!

Friday was crazy, but in the end I took the job I was offered Thursday night. I was giving my current employer until Monday to try to counteroffer, but the person in charge of the budget is out of town Monday and Tuesday and I couldn't wait until Wednesday. So, I told them nicely not to worry about it because, from our talks in the past, I didn't think they'd be able to match it. She thanked me for my honesty and things are fine.

The new job is giving me about 20-25% more in pay, plus more holidays and Jewish holidays, paid medical and dental, and is a step up position-wise. I'll be doing similar work. I just grew too fast for my current employer and they are ready or able to promote me to where I feel I should be. At least one of the guys there is going to hire me as a marketing consultant so I can make some extra money on the side, which is very cool!

As for Friday... if I hadn't been out on Thursday for the interview I would have thrown in the towel early on Friday and not gone in, but I was trying to be responsible. It backfired a bit LOL.

We had a decent amount of ice on the ground Friday morning, but my personal problem was the water main break on City Avenue. I work off City Avenue and take the road in for most of the 45 minutes it takes me to get to work. It's very busy, so everybody would be taking the same routes to go around the closed section. So, I decided to take SEPTA. Usually I don't have many problems taking it, but in my early morning foggy brain I forgot that the bus would be stuck in all that traffic, too.

So, I walked down the street to catch the trolley, which took a little while but got there. It was pretty cold and with the wind chill it was in the low 20s. I know, it's not as bad as a lot of you have it, but for me it's cold :) Took about 15 minutes to get to the 69th Street hub where I had to catch the bus.

Waited for the bus for about half an hour when they said it would be another 25 minutes. This is a bus that is very busy and picks up people about every 10 minutes. As I'm looking around at all the people outside and inside, I realize I'm not aggressive enough and will get bowled over and STILL not get on the bus. So, I decide to take the trolley BACK home and drive in after all, figuring I'll get there by the time the bus does anyway.

I wanted to call my boss so she knew. I don't carry a cell phone but was going to use my calling card, but I didn't have the right PIN. Then I was going to get change but the change machine was broken. I try not to carry a lot of change but I scrounged out 50 cents, put it in, dialed the number, had to scrounge for another 35 cents. Told Donna what was up, and took the trolley home. While home I had some breakfast until I heard the magic words on the news: "City Avenue is clear." Then I drove to work and it was pretty easy except for the one lane they still had shut down. It was a small bottleneck, but nothing major as it was after 9:30 by the time I got there.

So, my adventure started at 7:30 and I finally got to work about 10:00. At least they knew I was trying.

Oh, then later in the day, while I was still fighting anxiety about the job and hadn't yet made my decision, the side zipper on my pants split. The funny thing was that I was going to bring a spare pare in case I slipped in ice and mud -- I do that sometimes and often have a spare. I didn't want to miss the trolley the fist time and forgot, then forgot the second time I left. Luckily, I was wearing a long enough turtleneck and cardigan that it covered it up, but jeesh!

So, a day that could have really been rough was a little better because I went home knowing that in a few weeks I'd be working at a new place with different benefits and pay. The people there are nice, but I will miss those where I work now. I just got to the point where I didn't feel I could continue working there simply because I liked the people, when I need to start going somewhere in my life and saving more, etc. I figured my budget with the new salary and it will be nice to be able to have savings for various things -- car repairs, emergencies, etc. -- and still be able to buy a little stitching and a movie once in a while :)

Oh, and I forgot to post my exercise calendar from February. Each star represents 20 minutes of exercise, except for the first day when it was for 15 minutes. I'm planning for more stars in March, but am very happy with February.

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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Should be an interesting day

I'm taking half a day off today to go into Philly for a job interview with a place I'd interviewed with late last summer. This normally wouldn't be that huge a deal, other than the fact it IS a job interview. However, we are supposed to be getting a lovely ice storm around rush hour today so I'm no sure how things will go. I was planning on taking SEPTA anyway, as it's just easier when going into the city, and this is on Rittenhouse Square. I'm taking the trolley and train, which I hope won't be as goofed up by ice as the buses. I'll just take it as it comes. Sometimes they overplay this stuff on the tv and it ends up being nothing.

I've been doing good with the exercising, but may just do some simple Pilates or an easy walk this evening. I'm not sure. I've just got a lot on my mind right now with the job stuff, but am keeping on track with my food and diet.