Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Super Magnet Man to the Rescue!

There's no time like the present. I don't know who said it, but it's good advice. I got home earlier today from work, so I thought I would blog for a bit and catch you up on my life. I've been extremely busy the past three weeks or so.

I started my new job March 9th. I literally hit the ground running and really haven't stopped since. Having no real knowledge of what I'd actually be doing, I wasn't sure what to expect. But thankfully, I really enjoy it. Every single day is different. Sure, there are similarities each day, such as getting orders packed and out, but then things just come up. Calls come in. So and so wants to design something from scratch. We have to get the dimensions and sketches to our manufacturers in China. Even after everything is approved, it still takes an additional three to four weeks to get shipped. It's crazy, I tell you. But honestly, it's one of the most interesting jobs I've ever had. I learn new things every day.

The applications for magnets are endless!

I just wrote a whole paragraph about all the different applications but then I thought... hmm, maybe that's not the best idea. For copyright issues and security reasons. So, let me just tell you that's it's really neat! We have contracts with people literally all over the world. They can be used for things as simple as refrigerator magnets, to as complex things as helping windmills generate a sustainable amount of power.

Check out our website for more information: www.SUPERMAGNETMAN.net

I really do love my new job! In many ways, I feel like George (he's the Super Magnet Man) swooped down and rescued me from my other job. I'm able to use my skills and abilities here that I never could before. There's a freedom to be who God created me to be without all the red tape. Plus, we often have a lot of fun. I mean, don't get me wrong, it can be quite stressful and frantic (especially on Monday's!), but George always says, "If you're not having fun at work, then you must be doing something wrong."

I'd say the only draw back, is he doesn't offer health insurance. Which is obviously huge. Me being me, having health insurance is not an option. I went through the process of applying for individual coverage through Blue Cross Blue Shield, but I found out that they have a maximum weight requirement... and alas, I'm twenty pounds over it. This bit of news sent me into a mini-tailspin, but both my mom and sister turned things around for me. My mom issued a challenge: first to lose twenty pounds would win $200 towards a new clothing budget.

Last week, my sister and I starting our own Biggest Loser challenge! We're keeping a food journal to keep track of not only what we eat, but also our calorie, fat, protein, and sodium intake. So far she's lost 2.5 lbs and I've lost 2lbs. I'm hoping once my "diet" is more under control the weight will start falling off. I already work out at the Y 4-5 times a week.

Twenty pounds is my short term goal, but ultimately I'd like to lose 100!! Crazy, isn't it? I know I can do it though. Once I set my mind to something, I'm not easily persuaded to do anything else. I'm hard-headed and strong-willed that way; both a detriment and benefit to me.

Today my insurance expires and of course today I'm sick. The last time my insurance expired, I got food poisoning. Thankfully, it's nothing like that. I debated about going to the DR. I didn't want to waste money if all they were going to say is it's allergies or a cold. But I also didn't want this to turn into something else and then not be able to go to the DR. So, I wrestled both sides of the coin today and finally decided not to go to the DR. I didn't think I was that sick, just feeling kinda crummy. Apparently there's something floating around. Please pray I get over it quickly. I need to be functioning at full capacity so I can be affective at both work and the Y.

Well, I guess that about covers what's going on with me these last few weeks. Happy trails, my friends!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Kitchen Remodel: Phase One

To think, it all started with a sea of granite. We carried my kitchen drawer around to match the color to all the different varieties. We finally agreed on one, which we later found out was going to be WAYYY too expensive. Back to the warehouse mom and I went.

I tried to have an open mind, but I was fixated on the one I wanted; though it wasn't meant to be. Fortunately, God knew what was going to happen all along. There were some slabs in Atlanta that our Rep thought would be perfect for my kitchen. Honestly, I hated it. But my mom loved it. She has vision like no one I've ever met before, so although I didn't like it, I knew it would turn out OK in the end. I wish I had vision like that.

They guys came and installed everything this past Friday. I got home from work and walked into a whole new kitchen. I couldn't believe it! I actually liked it. And in fact, the more I look at it, the more I like it. It's very unique and the following pictures really don't do it justice.

I tried to capture some of the unique coloring. There's bits of silver, black, brown, taupe, cream as well as other colors.

It's one of a kind. Very unique and different. If you look closely (which you obviously can't do in this picture) but there are actual rocks cut in half. It's the coolest thing!

I LOVE my new sink!!!

Here's the view of the kitchen from the front door.

View from the den.

I'm calling that Phase One. Now, mom and I need to learn how to do back splash and repaint the walls. More pictures to follow. So, whatcha think?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Carpe Diem

I haven't updated in a week and a TON has happened!!! So hang on, grab a cup of your favorite beverage and settle in.

My boss hired my replacement and I was training her to take over. She's very smart and caught on to everything very quickly. By Wednesday, Steve asked me if I thought she'd be OK the rest of the week; I said yes. So, he graciously gave me the rest of the week "off" and I was to be "on call". Yeah!! I immediately called Stephanie and said, "What are you guys doing tomorrow? Can we go to The McWayne Center??"

During my mini-vacation between my old job and my new job, I had the chance to do a lot of the things I've been meaning to do. I had an opportunity to go to the McWayne Center. I've heard many good things about it and couldn't wait for the chance to go there myself. I haven't been in a few years and a ton has changed. Of course, when I was there last, our group wasn't really allowed to play, we were just seeing a movie at the IMAX. So having a two year old basically gave us an all access pass. (Thanks, Grant!)

I had THE BEST time!! We were there for about three hours?! Our final stop from the mouse house, which Grant loves. He said, "Aunt Mer, come play with me!" I followed him up a few floors and tried to come down the slide. (Though, they aren't really slides, as they have 'steps' inside; obviously for climbing.) He went down first and I tried to follow him, but I quickly realized I could potentially get stuck. He looked back up at me and said, "Aunt Mer, you are too big!" I said, "I know, buddy, I'm trying to find a way out." (A nice, little girl who was playing nearby pointed the way out.)

Look what God created!!

This was really neat. You piled as much sand on the spinning table as you could, turn it on, then slowly drag the stick to create different patterns. I was mesmerized!

I'm not sure what we were supposed to be 'learning' here, but I thought it would make a fun video!

Who doesn't want to play on the piano from Big?? (It's not actually from Big!) This piano was a ton of fun. I kept trying to remember how to play Chop Sticks, but never could find the right notes.

This station was cracking us all up!

What a BEAUTIFUL day!! It's hard to believe last Sunday it was snowing and then Friday was an amazingly gorgeous 78! I spent the day doing yard work. (Actually, I met my mom to look at granite early afternoon, but that's a whole other story. So let's skip ahead.) When I got home, I decided I was going to rake up all the leaves which had blown on the curb next to my house. I was sick of constantly walking through and tracking them into my house and car. Not to mention the fact, I was ready for things to look pretty and since no one else is going to do it, why not me? Having no real tools other than a rake and kitchen gloves (and patience!), I went to work.

I stopped at 5 to meet Amy at the Y. I love exercising but my shins have been hurting more as I try to jog. So instead, I tried the elliptical. I wasn't sure what to expect since the first time I tried it really hurt my back and legs, of course that was about five months ago. I believe I'm in better shape now, even if I don't look like it. I lasted 25 minutes!!! I went forward and backwards; fast and slow and at a normal pace. I was really proud of myself! Then Amy and I did an hour in the weight room. Whew I was exhausted by the time I was done!!

It took a couple hours on Friday and Saturday to get the job done. Eleven 12-gallon trash bags later, it looks tons better! I never would have realized there were that many leaves there. Crazy! I also thoroughly cleaned out, vacuumed, and washed my car... used special protective on the interior... cleaned all the windows and used RainX on them.... used special cleaner on the wheels too. My car looks brand new! Now that I type it out, it doesn't sound like all that much, but it took HOURS to get done.

I've been trying to mow my... well our (my little neighborhood) yard now for two days, but my mower isn't charging correctly; not sure why. If I don't have full charge by tomorrow night, then I'm going to have to track down the manual.

Saturday afternoon I went to the craft fair at the BJCC with my friend Christy. I honestly wasn't sure what to expect, but had a great time. When I walked in, I said, "Holy craft, Batman!" At the end of the day, the only things I bought were food.

I was a complete slacker and didn't go to church today. The time changed messed me up! Having had a few days off, I quickly reverted back to my old ways of being a night owl; staying up to 2 and 3 in the morning and sleeping until noon. If I were ever to be a super hero, I think my strength would be sleeping. Though, I don't really think that's a "strength" per se.

I met Amy at the Y and only did weights, but it was still hard. I added the ab roller into my routine. I lost count how many I did, but whew and ouch! Once I got home, I went into cleaning and organizing mode!! My mom and the granite guy are coming over tomorrow and my house was a wreck. I'm so ADD when I clean!!

I started in the kitchen, then got something from the den and noticed my Christmas tree was still up. (I know, I know.) I got the box and put that up but wanted to lessen the confusion for next year. I labeled each section, but I accidentally got Sharpie on my shirt! Ack. Which brought me back to the kitchen. My former coworker said milk gets out ink (it doesn't). I went upstairs to change into something cooler and realized I needed to finish up the wash. I stripped my bed and loaded the washer and unloaded the dryer. I went back downstairs to get the tree and realized it was time to wash the blankets that cover my drafty doors. Back upstairs I went and got distracted by something else. Eventually I made it back to the kitchen to do what I originally wanted to do... empty the dishwasher. haha

I ended up getting everything done though, so that's all that matters. The kitchen is spic & span... down stairs has been vacuumed... All chores except mowing the lawn got done this weekend! Yeah.

Tomorrow.... Monday
I start my new job!!!! I'm both excited and anxious. One of the very cool things I learned last night, I get to wear whatever I want!! That's such a blessing!! I've always hated picking out my clothes for work. Now, I can be comfortable to work hard. I'll let you know how my first day goes!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

An Alabama Miracle... SNOW!

I awoke to a winter wonderland this morning. My first instinct was to get bundled up and go outside and play. But being sleepy won over the kid inside, so I climbed back into my still-warm bed.

When I woke up... two hours later(!), I decided it was time to go outside. I texted my neighbor, Jenna, to see if she wanted to come out and play.

I decided to make a snow family. In hindsight, I should have made the babies a little bigger, but by the time I got to that point, my fingers were mostly numb. Jenna contributed chocolate covered espresso beans for her eyes.

I made a miniture version for Jenna.

Thanks for the surprise, God. I LOVED it! What a special treat!