Life, Picture Post

What I Have Learned After A Year of Being Single and A New Book Challenge

So, Hello! I just pulled the cat from the couch, how are you? It’s been a couple of months, but everything is very well here. I was officially hired by Plum Creek, so I got about a seven dollar raise. That and all the overtime I work helps out a lot. I have never finished out a pay period with money left over, and I was able to do that. Being financially stable is an amazing thing, it is a new thing, and it is something I have come to enjoy greatly.

It’s been a busy year. Changed jobs, moved (twice), and my car broke down. The super big things. Who knows I may move a third time before 2014 is over. I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past year (September to September, and I am aware that it is October). After the dramatic shift my life took, I wasn’t sure what to expect. Thankfully, I’ve had an amazing support team along the way. I learned that it isn’t as awkward as I thought it would be to go to the movies with myself. It’s also easier to coordinate movie dates and dinners with friends when it’s only you. But let me make a list, as I have grown to love lists. I have also grown to forget them a lot.

1) Cooking for one: Surprisingly a super hard thing to relearn. I went for a while cooking for two people, but one of those people had a two person appetite. A pound of bacon wouldn’t be enough. A block of cheese would last a day, and a box of pasta would be dinner for one. Once the Shift (I should really just call it that all the time) occurred, I found I was still buying for more than myself, and a lot of food went to waste. At the time that wasn’t cool because I wasn’t making a whole lot of money and that was just lost funds over time. I started to buy small frozen meals. Good for portion control, terrible for sodium levels. Then I went through a snacks only phase. So many pistachios were consumed over a few months, as well as candies and goldfish crackers. Oh, dear me, do not get me started on the goldfish crackers. I could have wholesaled out of my room with how many packages I had bought and subsequently consumed. Now, I eat what I want. If I want to eat a whole meal of red curry shrimp, I will. Most days I have a salad for lunch. I’ll have two corndogs for dinner if I work midnights, and I’m okay with that.

2) Making Friends: Before the Shift, I had the friends I had always had. Those that stuck with me through everything. After it, it was like a whole new world of people was opened up before me. I rarely went to bars before September of last year, because I was with someone and they never wanted to go. Last November I started to work at Target and met people that wanted me to hang out with them at bars. So, nervous the first time I went out, I don’t talk to anyone at the table. Somehow I still won them over. They kept inviting me back, I became their friend, we shared stories and hung out together. I had never had bar friends, and now I did (/do). I was an introvert among introverts, we all hated coming out of our houses and socializing. But, we had found a common place to hang out with people just like ourselves, and I don’t know if extroverts know how amazing and magical it can be.

3) Flirting: Apparently, I’m good at it. In all of my weirdness and all of my quirks, I’m apparently good at flirting. I did not know this.

4) Roommates: I have had very few good roommates experiences. Before I moved to Portland, I lived with a (now former) boyfriend and various other roommates in that same house. I loved that house. I lived with good people, and for the most part we got along. Then I moved a few times and I was tired of moving. This time last year though, my best friend Ky and her husband, offered me their spare room. Now, Ky wasn’t a new friend. She and I had met back in 2009 when I started at Teletech. Our friendship grew over time and slowly she became my best friend. When I was living in Beaverton and her and her husband told me they were going to visit Portland, I immediately offered my space to them and they offered a space to me. I trust them 100% and I know they would never let me down. We have our ups and downs, but I have learned so much from them and they have helped me grow as a human being. I tell them all the time that I don’t need to be married because I get to be around them and the happiness they share is enough for me. I wouldn’t trade their friendship for the world.

Maybe more of a list later… I already feel like this post is stretching on and on and on. But, I wanted to talk about the book challenge I’m going to start on January 1st, 2015. It’s a reading list, pulled from the front and back covers of a book called

    501 Must Read Books

Courtesy of Google Image Search

That is the book. I bought it at The Bookshelf in Kalispell. I picked it up, took it to the counter, and told the clerk (Mary is her name) that I was going to read all of them in a year. That’s 1.37 books a day and 9.63 books a week. I’m still shooting for that goal, It’s not entirely unattainable, a bit unrealistic but not unattainable. Some of them are about 800 pages long though, others are around 250-300 pages. It all comes down to time management. If I don’t finish in a year, then the challenge will be to see how long it takes me to read them all.

There is a list online if you want to see the selection of what I’m going to be reading here. I challenge you to try it out too. It’ll be a fun year expanding your reading ventures. I’ll try to update every week over the coming year what I finished, thoughts on the process, and so on. Bad Rock Books and The Bookshelf are going to get a lot of business from me, as well as the library.

Well, I’ve said a lot here, more than I’ll probably write in all of NaNoWriMo next month.

Have a good October everyone!


The Job Interview

So yesterday, I had a job interview with a large bank. I guess you could call it an interview. It was more “Let’s sit around a table and share stories of our work experience while the recruiter looks down her pointy nose at us.” There were quite a few people there but I don’t remember a single person’s name. So I gave them names. Clockwise around the table we had: Sarcastic Interview Lady, Smug Barista Girl, Sports Guy, Me, Lady Who Speaks Farsi, Over-eager Fiji Water Drinker, Troll, Naive Ohio Wife, and Scary Manager Lady.

Smug Barista Girl was my least favorite person there. She was trying really hard to make herself sound good, but was doing an awful job of it. When she was asked when she believed she provided her most amazing customer service, she replied with “Well I always do that, so I don’t have one story.” Her tone alone left me to question her honesty. During the next question about her most professional accomplishment she said that it was selling pounds of coffee at the GIANT coffee conglomerate where she works. When asked about her sales goal she said it was “20 pounds a week for the store.” When she was asked how much she contributed to that goal she mumbled a bit, stumbled a few times before getting her answer out, and blurted with “Like, 60%.” The Sarcastic Interview Lady had a small little sarcastic smile on her face and nodded.

Sports Guy sat next to me. He was from Oregon. We had the same area code in our phone numbers. We didn’t exchange words, but we bonded over that one fact. He was pretty good.

There was me. We’ll skip me.

Then the Lady Who Spoke Farsi. Now I have named a town in a short story that I wrote called Farsi. I was unaware it was a language and I am too lazy to google where they speak it. She seemed like a nice lady.

Over-eager Fiji Water Drinker. This girl was funny. She couldn’t go five minutes without taking a drink from her Fiji water. When the first one ran out, she pulled another one out of her bag. I’m not talking about the tiny Fiji bottles either, these are the giant Fiji waters, and she had a tiny purse. She was asked to list two of her best traits: “Good Listener, Good Communicator, and Very Motivated.” (That isn’t a typo.)

Troll was next. He showed up late. He didn’t know what the word “resides” meant. He didn’t know what “accomplishment” meant. Troll was a slow kind of guy.

Naive Ohio Wife moved here from Ohio. I don’t think she has ever worked a day in her life. She wore clothes that you would wear to a formal dinner to a job interview. When they asked about her work experience she said that she hadn’t ever worked and didn’t need too, that her husband was some big shot. She was getting a job to see “What it was all about.”

So those are the people that I interviewed with. I’ll know by next Friday if they are advancing me in the interview process. So fingers crossed. Well, not really. Because if I cross my fingers it’s hard to type. But you know what I mean.