Thursday, February 20, 2014

Fitting in...

Ever since I was a kid, I have never felt like I fit in with any particular group of people. Growing up I had a few friends and all, and as I got older, I had fewer and fewer to the point where I don't really have any. Facebook tells me I have 101, but with the exception of a very select few, they are mostly just acquaintances. Only a handful of those do I interact with online on a regular basis. I never go out with any friends... Some of that is just me as I don't drink, I don't like being out at night, and I'm just plain cheap; but the other part is that I don't know anyone to go out with as just a friend.

I am really struggling to fit in at work. I'm not looking to make lasting friendships at work, I just want to go, do my job, and leave. In the past I have gotten caught up in the drama and I do not ever want to do that again. However, it would be nice to feel like I belong, that I am at least liked. At my school bus job, I am not even really an employee, I am a temp. I am not one of the drivers; I want to be, so badly, but I am not. I get asked to leave the driver's meeting as I don't actually count and "outsiders" aren't allowed. That hurt. I am right there driving the bus many days out of the week, but yet I am not included as a driver so I don't get to know about what is going on. Damn unions.

I have never fit in at my city bus job, I felt like that ever since I started there. I am not sure why. I mean people are generally nice to me and all, but still. I only ever really got along with the night mechanic.

I am not sure what is wrong with me that makes me so unlikeable to the general population of places I work. I know I shouldn't take it personally, but I really wonder what I could do to improve my social interactions. I am not sure how I come off to other people, but obviously unless you only know me for a few minutes, it's not a very positive way. :-\

Sunday, January 12, 2014

For the first time

I have never been one of those girls who has thought highly of herself. I have always struggled with my self esteem, well lack thereof. But suddenly, for the first time in my life I actually feel smart and attractive. Odd, as I'm going through a separation, my work schedule is non existent, his family and friends hate me due to their butting into a situation they don't understand...but I suddenly have confidence. It's a very weird feeling.

Speaking of weird feelings, I also have found some happiness, so much happiness that my face was actually hurting from smiling so much! (Before those of you who know my situation go off the deep end, you don't know the whole thing and what arrangements/agreements have been worked out, I am not doing anything in "secret" or that is not allowed!) Things are going in a good direction where happiness could be a very real possibility :-) it's been a very long time since I have felt such joy.

My Rainbow Looming is going well, I was contacted by a publisher who was interested  in my design. So far they really like one of my designs and have contacted me to make 2 more! It's pretty exciting, plus it gives me something to do as  I don't have much for real work. Best part is they pay me for the designs!!

I learned an important new skill today, how to use a sight on a gun! So it was a silly electronic gun for a game, but the concept is the same. For the first time ever I got a perfect score in a shooting game! Maybe one of these days I will learn to shoot the real thing!

So yeah, all of these positive things, are really helping me to stay happy and positive through what could be a very difficult time. I'm just hoping the work life will follow suite!




Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Hindsight is 20/20

Some of you may have figured out that I am having some marriage trouble. I don't know if trouble is the word, as we aren't fighting, or not getting along....it's complicated, but basically comes down to my lack of romantic feelings. It's not fair to him. It's not fair to me. It's just not fair. I always thought marriage was supposed to be forever, till death do you part. Not this time unfortunately. Back when we got married, I had doubts, and wish I had listened to them rather than hurting him. We are better off as just friends. Right now we are living as roommates. It's working ok for the most part. I am so thankful that he is probably one of the nicest guys I know, where as I should be living in my car during this polar vortex for being such a terrible wife, he is still kind to me. I don't deserve it, but he deserves so much better. I hope he can find someone who will treat him with the same love and respect and kindness that he possesses. Any girl would be very lucky to have him as a husband.

So yeah, that kinda sucks, but needs to be done as my goal this year is to find happiness. As I have been, I am continuing to work to get myself in a better financial position. I have FINALLY seriously cut back on impulsive spending to almost nothing. You have no idea what a huge step that is for me. Money no longer burns a hole in my pocket, and I think about my purchases, often carrying them around the store until I convince myself that I do not need it. I guess the impending separation helps as I don't want to have any more stuff to move when the time comes! Bad reason, but hey, it gets the job done and breaks the habit.

I thought I had enough to deal with with this whole situation. But no, things pile on. I knew there was a new pick at work (drivers choose the schedules they want based on pre determined schedules set by management). New picks are always stressful. Things get swapped around. But this time it seems they are trying to force out the part timers. I am in the middle of the seniority for part time, I've only been there for 2 years. There are only a few open shifts left for part timers. It sucks as the more senior drivers will get those. I am still just a temp employee at the school bus company, so I have no guarantee of work. Of course, they email and as me to come in to direct traffic. Those of you from my past job know just how much I love working the corner and wearing a fluorescent yellow vest....but I have to say yes, and do the work with a smile because I really really really want to get full time there and want to prove I am an excellent employee that is flexible.
Brrrrrrr, the Polar Vortex is here

I'm so desperate to get my finances in order, I have even applied to another school bus company in hopes they can hire me on a temporary basis. I'm not sure it will work out as it's in another state plus I already technically have 2 jobs, but I figure it's worth a shot.

Speaking of finding happiness....I am lucky though, just as things were falling apart a friend of mine became closer. He keeps me laughing and smiling and takes my mind off of everything else. I can talk to him about anything and everything. It's a nice bright part of my day. I am hoping that things will work out. (Just for the record, this friendship has nothing at all to do with the decline of the marriage, that was happening before this friendship progressed!)


I need to just be patient and not rush into any major decisions. I need to just take each day as it comes and let things fall into place as they were meant to be. It's so much easier to sit here and type that than it is to actually follow it in real life, but I have to try! I really hope to find happiness this year and get on living my life as a better, happier person.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013

It has been an interesting year. Started out normal. Nothing special, just another year, month, week, day. I was struggling with medication changes. Kalikat was still alive and pooping everywhere, but giving lots of love. I miss her, even though I hated the mess I was constantly cleaning up.

It was winter, then it was spring. I was very happy to be back on my Vespa which was all fixed up from the fall over and the transmission. My poor Geo Metro was neglected. I was working a decent schedule at COAST.

Summer came and with that I got to go on an amazing trip to England with my mom. It was awesome. I got to see my aunt, uncle, other uncle, Grandpa, plus all the beautiful scenery. My mom showed me where she grew up. It was amazing.

I got hired with the one company I really wanted to work for on the Seacoast. Unfortunately, it is only a temporary position, but it means I am in the door, so I will just wait and do my best until I can get a "full time" job there with amazing benefits. It also means I am behind the wheel of school buses again,, which is where I am happiest!

I had to say goodbye to Kali, but hello to sweet Oliver. Oliver has been an awesome addition to Hobo and I's life. He is a great companion and a great playmate.

This last month has been crazy and weird. Things changed rapidly. The marriage kind of fell apart. There is just not enough romantic feelings to make it work. Nothing is official yet, it's complicated. But either way, we are better off as friends than a couple.

With the upcoming year my goal is to find happiness. I have spent too much time being miserable. Life is short. I am looking forward to what may come in the next year.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Not so Merry Christmas This Year

The Christmas season  is supposed to be filled with happiness and joy. Not really sure why other than its complicated and personal, but this year all I know is I am no longer happy. It's just no good. But, such is life. We make decisions, we move on, continually searching for what it is that truly makes us happy, hoping one day to find it.

I saw a bumper sticker once that kind of sums up how I feel about life: Do What you Like, Like what you do. I know I have that feeling when I am behind the wheel of a school bus, but I would like to have all aspects of my life be like that.

Life is short, you don't know when you will leave . It is so important to find what makes you happy, and avoid unhappiness as much as possible. I know there will always be some disappointment and sadness, that's all just part of the a normal life cycle, but I try to minimize that.

I hate that I live with so many regrets, although I guess if I didn't make the decisions I did, then I wouldn't be where I am today with the potential to get the job I really want, and have met the people I have met. It's hard to see that sometimes when you are just going through the motions of day to day life.

Right now, I am wishing that my perfectly realistic fantasy would come true. Lets hope the upcoming year will bring me more happiness and what I am looking for.

Stocking was stuffed!!!
I do have to say, the presents were very nice this year. :-) Those were a bright patch of light to an otherwise boring day. I also had a nice Christmas Eve breakfast with a friend that was nice. I don't get to go out all that often other than to work or the store, so that was a welcome change. :-)

I was especially excited about the Greys Season 9 DVD, the trunk pull for my Fiat, the sewing machine (now, to find out how to use it!), and the Jurassic Park Trilogy on BluRay.

I got my 4th Rainbow loom as well which is pretty cool. Came in handy when I made a lanyard for my work ID!


Under the Tree!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Black Friday Recap

I love Black Friday. I love getting stuff cheap. I love having saved up money to be able to go on a shopping spree. It is one of my most favorite days of the year!

I got up Thursday morning while my husband was voluntarily working (triple pay...yay!) and headed to the Tedeschis convenience store near my apartment to pick up a coffee and the newspaper.  This is my new tradition as of last year. I love the fresh newspaper with the humongous amount of ads! I actually saw something online that said the Portsmouth Herald had the largest selection of Black Friday ads, so the Herald it was! Of course, I didn't even open the regular paper part, going straight for the most important part, the ads!

I had previewed most of the stores I was interested in through either the store site or an iPad app called Black Friday from FatWallet. Nothing compared to actually going through each circular in it's paper form, being able to slowly peruse each item and it's price. The digital world just can't replace it. It's just not the same online.

This year I had a fairly limited budget as my work hours have been cut so drastically and I need to keep something in savings just in case. I had to really plan my shopping and keep a list.

I went through each flyer looking at the deals and writing down the ones I was interested in and the Out of Pocket cost. I focused on the pharmacies (Rite Aid, Walgreens, and CVS) as they had a lot of household and candy deals that paired very nicely with coupons and their rewards back programs. I planned on two transactions per store, one that gave me the rewards certificates and the next that used those rewards certificates. This plan worked perfectly at CVS and Walgreens, but unfortunately I was unaware that Rite Aid did not give instant rewards on your receipt. Luckily, they were a small portion of my overall plan.

I was able to get two of my larger purchases online so I didn't even have to deal with the stores! One was an amazing deal on a present my husband has been wanting badly, and the other one was a $15 Craftsman Multimeter at Sears, which was something I have been wanting as my Geo Metro Convertible has been cranky with some electrical things.

I also went through the lists for Target, Walmart, and a couple other stores. There were several DVDs I wanted both for myself and as a gift. I wanted to go to Kohl's as I had a $10 off $10 purchase coupon and an additional 15% off everything. I also love crafts, so Michaels and JoAnns were two more stops I had toward the end of my trip as I didn't actually need anything, but would like to find a couple things as they had nice % off entire transaction including sale items.

Household Stuff
I packed myself a tote bag with the ads of the stores I planned on going to, a list of the items and their prices/coupons/rewards totals paper clipped with the necessary coupons, and a paperclip of the other coupons for the various stores. As I struggle with low blood sugar I packed a lunchbox with snacks and drinks to keep me going throughout the day.

I have to say all the planning I did Thursday paid off big time Friday!! I saved 56% on my entire purchase overall. Best part is I didn't leave my house until 6:30AM Friday!

Obviously all my deals can't be shown as quite a few were gifts, and he reads this blog!

I got some great deals on Laundry detergent as the pharmacies had buy 1 get 2 free that I combined with coupons. I got Buy 1 get 1 free batteries (Duracell and Energizer) also combined with coupons and rewards. It was great being able to stock up on name brand products at less than the generic prices! I was very happy that the pharmacies had plenty of stock, as I was worried they would have sold out on Thanksgiving.

Fun stuff for me
My all time favorite deal, and the one I had to work the hardest for was the Cat's Meow toy and the GoGo Pillow. Walgreens had an awesome promotion where it was Buy 1 get 1 free on select As Seen on TV products, the other pharmacies had a similar deal, but not on products I actually wanted. My husband and I decided the cats were getting the Cats Meow toy as their present this year, so regardless of sales, we were going to purchase it. When I saw it was included in the Walgreens sale, I knew I had to try and get one. I almost caved and went out on Thanksgiving to buy one, but didn't. Unfortunately, when I got to my local Walgreens, they were sold out. The associate was very nice and checked in the back and even called the other store semi-nearby. As it turns out, they other store had a truck come in that morning that hadn't been unloaded yet, so I was asked to call later to see if they had them in stock. I did, and was able to go up to the other store and get the toy and got a GoGo Pillow for free (which I totally love!!! It's perfect to support my iPad!).

My luckiest find was the off brand loom bands....the peachy color is usually only sold at one store, which is not in my area and regularly cost $3 or more; they were only $0.99!  I need this color as I plan on making the nativity scene. I purchased extras to list online and they sold within a day! Awesome!

Of all my lists and stores, there was only one thing I did not find....a DVD copy of the Vow for around $4. Oh well. I would say this Black Friday was a resounding success, and I didn't even have to wake up stupid early or shop on Thanksgiving to do it! :-D

I can't wait for next year!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

Hobo
Every year it seems I struggle to find what I am truly thankful for. I mean, I am lucky I am able to work, have a job, I can walk, I can breathe, I have a roof over my head, etc;

This year, I am most thankful for my cats. My Hobo cat is a wonderful, fun, adorable ball of fluff. He makes me smile. We were lucky enough to adopt a wonderful cat we named Oliver last week from Cocheco Valley Humane Society. He is 5, which is perfect as Hobo is 4. They are getting along fabulously! It is so nice to have two cats who seem to enjoy each other's company. They definitely brighten my day. It is impossible to be miserable while interacting with these two handsome boys!

I am also very happy to be back employed by a school district driving school buses again! Although I am technically a temp, I have my foot in the door for the one local bus company I really really want to work for. I am hoping by next year there is a full time position open.

Lets hope next Thanksgiving will bring about a happier entry.