Thursday, December 27, 2007

No more secrets

Remember a few weeks ago when I alluded to a friend that was "moving forward" in her relationship? Well, she's moved alright.


Congratulations Diane & Jim on your engagement!!!


She's asked me to be a bridesmaid too so it looks like I'll be making a trip to Michigan in 2009. I can't wait! Bring on the wedding planning!

Christmas 2007

Well, Santa didn't come through on any of my last minute wishes but that's okay. I still had a good Christmas.

Christmas Eve I stayed at work until the bitter end. 4:30. Brutal. I broke the day up by doing a Starbucks run at 9 in the morning and eating LOTS of chocolate during the day :) After work I went basically straight over to my parents and then we, along with my youngest brother and his girlfriend went for dinner at Old Spaghetti Factory. It was my Dad's birthday so we wanted to do something different considering we had had a family dinner on Sunday.

After dinner we drove around looking at lights. I stopped at my friends house to feed her dog and then we drove past almost every single house my family has ever lived in in this town (6 of them!) The lights weren't really that exciting but it was fun to drive around and reminisce.

When we got back to my parents we had birthday cake (the traditional angel food with chocolate icing) and then Mom, Dad and I watched a movie.

I went home and slept in my own bed and was back at my parents by about 11am Christmas Day. Mom had the turkey going and we helped with some of the side dishes. Around 2pm we loaded it all up and went over to the church. Our church just finished major renovations downstairs. My mom's cousin and her family and another couple joined us for lunch. None of us have enough space to seat that many people so the church was a great central place to meet up. Plus it has three ovens and a dishwasher! After dinner we played games. Mad Gab, Ziggity, Uno Attack and a really long game of Monopoly.

Boxing Day I slept in and then checked out some boxing day sales. I came home empty handed which was perfectly fine. I worked at the store from 2-6:30. It was busier that day then the three days before Christmas put together. Crazy! I love it that way. It makes the time fly.

So that was my Christmas. Today I was back at work and I'll be there tomorrow too. I'm taking Monday off and aside from doing a layout at the store on Saturday evening I get a full four day weekend. Of course that's already full of holiday parties too but that's my life. Eat, work, sleep, party!

To all my loyal blog readers, I hope you each had a fantastic Christmas and I wish you all the best for the new year.

~Heidi

Monday, December 24, 2007

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,

I know I haven't really been in the Christmas spirit this year and it is already Christmas Eve and they're already tracking you on via NORAD (I heard this morning you were in Thailand already) but I figured I'd take a moment to write you a quick letter anyways. I'm not really in a position to ask for anything because I haven't been giving anything this year but that's not what you're about is it?

So, without further ado, my Christmas list including the big uncontrollable things and the little material things.
  1. To get off work early on December 24th. You must know how it is. Working many, many hours in a week, I'm reaching burn out and being able to leave the office early would be fantastic.
  2. To have all my brothers home for Christmas. I know it's not going to happen but I believe you generally fly East to West. If you pick up the boys while you're in Alberta and bring them home to me in BC that would be awesome.
  3. Health for everyone. Is this your department? I'm realizing more and more each day that my parents and other loved ones are getting older and I ask for good health for them.
  4. No debt. I'm in control of this one and I'm working on it. A cheque to help with my journey would be much appreciated it.
  5. A computer of my own (with Microsoft programs) and an iPod. Not on the list of possibilities but something I really want and would use.
  6. A couple of Christmas cd's. I talked myself out of them at the beginning of the season and now I'm wishing I had them.

There's a few other things I would like too but these would suffice. Merry Christmas Santa. Fly safe.

~Heidi

Thursday, December 20, 2007

"Dude I don't USE raisins!"

Tuesday we had a goodie day at work. Everyone brought an appetizer and dessert (or both). I had Monday night off so I made some butterscotch brownies and buffalo chicken dip. As I was doing dishes I realized I still had time to make more so I whipped up a loaf of banana bread and I threw in chocolate chips like I always do.

There were lots of leftovers and my co-worker was eating a piece of banana bread yesterday. He said "There's chocolate chips in this! You're supposed to use raisins". Uh, no. No thank you. Raisins are the one thing that I DON'T like. My mom used to make bran muffins and she'd make half the batch with raisins for my dad.

When we went trick-or-treating at Halloween we'd come home and go through our candy. The first thing we'd do was remove all the boxes of raisins and give them to my dad. Of course he'd still try and get chocolate and candy from us but he knew the raisins were definitely his.

So, no raisins. Especially in my banana bread!!!

But craisins? Bring them on! Not in my bread though. Just on a salad or straight.

~Heidi...not a raisin fan...

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Christmas is Cancelled

After much discussion, debate, justifying and soul searching, Christmas has been cancelled for my family. Cancelled in the sense that we won't all be getting together and we won't be exchanging gifts this year. We've all started new jobs (me at the store, Dad and Seth & Robert) and no one can get enough time off to travel. To get time off I would have to quit my job at the store. Something I'm not really wanting to do. Seth & Robert aren't able, or willing to come home simply because it's too expensive.

We (Mom and I first and then everyone else) talked about it and we decided:
  1. Christmas is for the kids. We don't have any kids around. Aaron will be 17 in January and frankly, he's much more excited about buying gifts for his friends than his family
  2. None of us really *need* anything and there is NOTHING worse than buying out of obligation. Plus the boys (Seth & Robert) don't even have a place of their own. Giving them more "stuff" is silly. And exchanging gift cards is just ridiculous.
  3. We had a fantastic Thanksgiving. Christmas is about togetherness and since that's not possible this year, we'll just be glad that we had a really nice time at Thanksgiving and we'll try and get together sometime in the new year. Maybe for Robert's birthday (in February), maybe not till Easter. Either works.
  4. Christmas 2008 will be here in 53 weeks. The countdown is on! LOL I'm taking charge and for next year we're going away. Probably to Sun Peaks or somewhere were skiing is an option, or we can just be together. The gift question is up for debate for next year but we should all be settled in to our jobs enough to make plans. Plus next year Christmas is on a Thursday so we should have Thursday/Friday/Saturday/Sunday to go away for.
  5. Lastly I made myself sick last year with worrying about making Christmas the way it was "supposed" to be. It turned out really good but the self imposed stress was stupid. This year I've let go and realized that it's not really that bid a deal.

So there. Christmas, the way it "usually" is, won't be this year. I'm totally okay with that though. It's a huge load of my mind, especially since I'll be logging well over 60 hours of work this week and I'm working both Christmas Eve and Boxing Day. I'm not even worried about not getting or giving gifts. Between all my commitments I've attended 5 Christmas parties so far this year and I've got some really nice things there and that's more than sufficient. I do need to try and find something for my Dad's birthday (Christmas Eve) but one is easier than five.

Merry un-Christmas to you!

~Heidi

PS I will get together with my parents for dinner on Christmas day but I eat with them all the time so it's not that unique. We may be including my mom's cousin for the first time. I'll report if anything interesting happens :)

Monday, December 17, 2007

Tis the season to be busy!

This is copy and paste from my email to Deb this morning:

I had a good weekend. Super, super busy but hey, my name wouldn't be "Heidi" if it wasn't right? LOL Friday I went *straight* from my day job to the store. Didn't even have time to eat dinner. Not something I'd recommend but it worked. Afterwards I went over to a friends. I know, I know. I should have just gone to bed. The thing is we've been trying to hook up for months and I knew if I didn't go then I wouldn't get there till after Christmas.

Saturday it was up and back to work from 11-3. After that I went out to Langley and had coffee with Diane and Shannon. I came back in to town after coffee and I was supposed to go to bible study but I decided to skip out. Good decision. I finished writing my Christmas cards and was in bed, asleep by 9pm.

Sunday I got up and went to church. Afterwards I worked at the store from 2-6:30 and then went over to my friends for a big Christmas party. They had a full turkey dinner, a tacky gift exchange and other fun games. We had a great time. Most of the people who were there are my "Hemlock Crew" and I haven't seen them in a few months so it was nice.

Tonight I actually have a night off!!! I have to go grocery shopping though and I'm planning on doing some baking. Tomorrow I work until about 1:30 and then I'm off to a board meeting with my old job and their Christmas party. And then I work at the store Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Yipee! LOL

Friday, December 14, 2007

Basics for Babies 2007

Happy Blogversary! Two years ago tomorrow I joined the wonderful world of blogging. Through that time I've created over 600 posts, shared pictures and life. I've also gotten to know my fellow bloggers that much better.

Two years ago the first major event that I posted about was the JRfm Basics for Babies Breakfast. Today I took the morning off work to attend again. Traffic was heavy at 6:30 in the morning so I arrived just as the first act, newcomer Jessie Farrell from Vancouver was wrapping up. That was okay though because I was really there to see Doc Walker!!!

My loyal blog readers will probably recognize the name and remember that they opened for Dierks in January. They're also the first concert I ever went to. It was super exciting to be able to hear them do some acoustic songs and get a chance to chat with them briefly, get autographs and pictures.

I was especially excited to talk to Dave (first picture) because I wanted to thank him for being so accessible to his fans. He makes a point of posting on the message board on their website and responding to messages on Facebook. It's very cool.

Dave and Chris both confirmed that new music should hit the air in January. They performed the song that they will probably release as a single, a new one called "Beautiful Life". I love it already and I think it might be my theme song for 2008 :D

They also performed their first single, "Rocket Girl" and a fantastic Christmas song called "Remember December". It was awesome. Definitely worth the drive to Surrey :)

I asked Dave about a tour and he said "Commodore in April". OMFSM that would be AMAZING. I really, really hope that happens and I can't wait!!! Three songs really wasn't enough. If you haven't heard these guys yet, check them out here

~Heidi

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Hello poor neglected blog :(

I appologize for not blogging lately. I was doing so well there! Then I just got busy and blogging fell down the list as a priority. Work has been nuts. It seems to take forever to get anything done lately and I'm not even procrastinating by blogging like normal LOL

I've been pulling quite a few hours at the store too and that is only increasing. I knew it would as we got closer to Christmas but looking at the schedule is kind of scary. I have started the tranining as key holder as well. That means that I'm learning the paperwork to be able to close which means (after Christmas) I could work alone in the store).

The big thing that's been taking my time lately is Christmas parties! I've been to three already and I have more coming. They've all been great. The first one was an industry luncheon for office support staff on Friday afternoon. After lunch we got to go home which was great. Sunday night all the NR staff went to a local Greek restaurant. We laughed and ate and drank and exchanged gifts and, I even got $40 in NR "bucks" to put towards clothes!!!

Tuesday was my day job staff Christmas dinner. Last year we went to a dinner theatre production. It was okay but some people weren't comfortable with joining in so it make it kind of akward. This year we just went to a nice quiet Italian restaurant. My boss picked me up because it's on the way and there's not very much parking at the restaurant. There were only about a dozen of us there and she was down at the other end of the table. I was across from our chairman and his girlfriend and beside some other co-workers. On the way home she turned to me and said "I just want to tell you that you are a very good networker. I've seen you in a few situations now and you do a great job of carrying conversation without being pushy." She used some other very flattering adjectives as well. It was really nice to hear. I thanked her and told her that I am my dad's daughter, because I get a lot of that confidence from him and I had good training at my last job. When I got home I called my mom and told her "Well done Mom and Dad, you done good" :D

So that's my life right now. Work, eat, sleep, party, repeat :) It's good.

~Heidi

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Snow day!

Sunday morning I got up and puttered around before getting ready for church. Just before I hopped in the shower my dad called. Church had been cancelled due to the snow. (I still showered ;)) I spent the day doing dishes, baking, watching tv, surfing online and making cards.

I was scheduled to work at the store that evening. I had actually been scheduled from 12-4 but on Saturday I switched shifts with one of my co-workers so I could go to church. Around 3 I called the store just to see how they were doing and my boss said they were basically finished doing the layout so if I didn't want to brave the weather (it snowed steadily ALL day) I didn't have to bother coming in. I took her up on that.

I also talked to my boss from my day job. The snow was even heavier north of the river so the office was closed on Monday. She and I still had a conference call to attend though. I didn't want to run the call off my cell phone since we had a lengthy agenda. Instead I packed up Sunday night and went over to my parents house. Mom and I started a round of Scrabble and I pulled out all the old Christmas tapes. "Six White Boomers" by Uncle Tony was the first one out of the box. He recorded that in his basement and the date on the tape is 1991. You can tell it's getting old too...or we just played it a LOT. It sounded pretty good though. Next out was John Denver. Mom got that tape probably around 1996 or so. Not too long ago but I totally fell in love with it. About halfway through the tape and our game, Dad called us downstairs to the tv room because there was a John Denver movie on! I hadn't seen that one before so we watched it through. (Mom also beat me in Scrabble because she spelled "INJURED".

I spent the night at their house. I think that's the first time since I moved out 1.5 years ago. Even last Christmas I slept in my own bed. Monday morning I got up and joined the conference call (which ended up lasting for an hour and forty five minutes) and then started working on the minutes right away.

Monday afternoon I had actually booked off. I'll put that adventure in a separate post.

~Heidi

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Snow White Boomers

I got a package yesterday. Of course I had to wait until after my 6 hour shift before I could go go the post office but it was there waiting. I opened it right away anticipating what it might be. I was right. Chirstmas ornaments from Veronica! An adorable clear penguin in a top hat and a kangaroo in a Santa suit.

The kangaroo is especially meaningful to me. It was actually the first one I unwrapped and my first thought was "It's my very own snow white boomer!!!" Okay, so it's not "snow white" but seeing it took me right back to my childhood. I've mentioned before that my paternal grandfather was a champion fiddle player. My uncle (my Dad's oldest sister's husband) was/is an avid accordian player. Grandpa and Uncle Tony used to get together all the time to play. They even recorded a few cassetes including a Christmas one. My favourite song off that cassette was about Joey and the Snow White Boomers that came to take him back to his mama. Here's a YouTube video with the original singer . It's the same version they used to do except HEAVY on the fiddle and accordian obviously.

I haven't heard from or about Uncle Tony in many years but I have many fond memories. His hair has always been thin and he used to tease me saying that I had lots and should share with him LOL
I'm going to have to dig that tape out next time I'm at Mom & Dad's.
Not today though. It's snowing like crazy again. Church even got cancelled because it's out on an unplowed country road. I'm enjoying my "snow day" today along with happy memories.
Thanks Veronica!!!
~Heidi

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Quitting My Day Job?

A few days ago, in response to this post Veronica asked:
Looks like a new career is looming for you :) Do you like this job more than
your day job? Could you see yourself giving up your day job to become an assistant manager (or a manager)?

I wrote the following response right away but I've waited to post it until I had worked another shift. My original response:
Actually no. Well, maybe it will be different with the assistant manager gone. I can honestly say that I have had FUN for the past two days. That said, this job REALLY makes me appreciate my day job. It's not just the fact that I make half the amount of money at the store, but there's a certain sense of futility with chasing the almighty dollar. Also, and again, this could just be my ex-assistant manager, there's desparation in retail that I don't feel in the corporate world. A desparation to get hours and hit sales goals and always, always making sure you are staying on track because head office could drop by any day.

I don't think I could do retail full time. I'd either go nuts or get caught up in that rat race. Honestly, part of what is keeping me sane with that job is

1. knowing that it ISN'T what pays my rent and if I don't get as many hours next week, I won't starve.

2. knowing that I CAN quit at any time (for the reasons in #1) and that I am in control of the situation. I am working there by CHOICE. It's a really nice position to be in. One I wouldn't have if I quit my day job.

We'll see how it goes with the new staff set up. Maybe I'll change my mind. I kind of doubt it though. Oh, and I've been thinking about the offer, of becoming a key holder? I'm going to tell her that I'm willing to learn how to open and close but I'm not interested in full day shifts, especially on Sunday's. That's kind of what she's looking for. Someone who can do the 10-5:30 (9:30-6) shift. That's not me. I already work five full days a week thankyouverymuch. Four hour shifts here and there are more than enough.

It's been interesting though and I am glad that I'm trying it out...on my terms.

I had my first six hour shift today and even though we had fun, my observations from above still stand. I have been doing really well with sales lately. Today there were snow flurries so there weren't all that many people in and my sales sucked. Big time. I was at about half of what my goal was, and only after I processed two transactions AFTER I was supposed to be off.

I'm enjoying myself but I'm not ready to give up my day job just yet. I'll keep you posted.

~Heidi



PS I did tell her that I'm willing to train as a key holder but not for full Sunday's she seemed happy with that.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Mint Cookies!

Lately I've had a craving for chocolate mint cookies. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's the Girl Guide cookies I polished off? Anyways it took me three shopping trips to find mint extract (my grocery store was out but I found it at another one) and I even bought green food colouring. Actually I bought a whole box of food colouring. It's Christmas. You never know when you need food colouring.

So I had the food colouring and the extract. Next I needed a recipe. I checked all my cookbooks. Nothing. I searched online. Nothing inspiring. I mentioned it to my mom. She didn't know of any off the top of her head but she said she'd keep her eyes opened.

Re-wind a few weeks to when I had a craving for cherry chip almond muffins. Mom is a subscriber to Taste of Home's "Cooking for 2". I had flipped through one of her issues and saw this recipe. I didn't write it down and then when I wanted to make it, I couldn't find it online. Within our conversation I ended up signing up for the Taste of Home "Light Desserts" email blast. I've gotten a handful of recipes so far and none of them have been appealing. On Wednesday I was actually considering unsubscribing because it was just email clutter.

Yesterday I got the email from ToH and it was a recipe for "Chocolate Mint Whoopie Pies" I admit I'm not totally sure what a Whoopie Pie is but they looked good so, on the way home I stopped by the grocery store and picked up cocoa powder. When I got home I checked my email and Mom had forwarded me the recipe!

Long story short? Last night I finally made choclate mint cookies :) They're really good too. The second batch is bigger than the first batch because I wasn't sure how much they'd spread so I didn't flatten them very much. I have a bunch of icing left over too so I may make another batch of cookies today. Aren't they pretty though?

Thursday, November 29, 2007

I hate keeping secrets

I'm no good at it. Especially when it's good news. Bad news I can keep in. I just let it sit and I can ache for someone. Good news though? I want to tell the world!

I was going to post this a few hours ago. I was talking to a friend who is, shall we say "moving forward in a relationship" and just sounds so HAPPY. On Sunday I found out that another friend is pregnant and just now, I found out about ANOTHER one!!! That's five babies for certain in the next year. SO exciting.

My life is boring on this front so I am stoked when I hear about others who have happy news :)

How cool is that?!

I just called the doctor's office because I need to renew my prescription. The receptionist informed me that I DON'T have to come in and see the doctor (yahoo!). All I have to do is call the pharmacy and they can call the doctor for a renewal. Sweet! That makes my life MUCH easier. Now to figure out when I can get down to the pharmacy...

Duh

I was commenting to my boss yesterday about how cold my bedroom is. On my bed I currently have my sheets, two comforters, a fleece blanket and another fleecy blanket. Plus I've taken to wearing socks and sweat pants to bed to keep me warm. She was making all sorts of helpful suggestions like getting an electric blanket or thicker blinds for my window that actually keep the heat in. The second suggestion was because I told her that I knew the reason I was cold is because my bed is right under the window which is really thin.

Last night I figured out a better way to stay warm. Better than extra clothes or blankets. JUST TURN THE HEAT UP! Duh! Sometimes I think my brain is frozen. I have electric heat. The heater was ON but not UP. It wasn't even in the "comfort zone". Last night I turned it up and I was toasty warm. It's rather sad that I had to actually freeze before I decided to turn the heat up. I mean there was snow on the ground. You need heat inside when it's zero outside.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Rain, rain go away

Actually, you can stay as long as you promise to not turn in to snow. Yesterday was pretty nice. It's almost like nature was appologizing for being so crappy on Monday. There was some sunlight breaking through the clouds yesterday and a pretty pink sunset (which I saw through my office window. The sun get's off before I do. It's not fair LOL) Today it's back to being grey and miserable but at least it's not snowing!!!

Anyways, I'm not actually here to talk about the weather. I have a much more insightful bit of info to share with you. It started with my Stampin' Up class that I held last night. We did a "Stamp-a-Stack". 10 cards for $15 (two each of ten designs). I placed an order too and I'm getting the SU slot punch. You have NO idea how excited I am. I've been coveting that one for years!!! :D

As a thank you for holding the class my demonstrator gave me a personalized day planner. It's really cute and EXACTLY the kind I like. A month at a glance with nice big spaces for writing in. I had actually bought one from Walmart but this one is nicer. This one starts in September 2007 and goes right through to December 2009. My current one started in August 2005 and goes through to December 2007. I've been meaning to switch over since I bought the calendar from Walmart but I hadn't gotten around to it. Last night I wrote my name in the new planner and looked at the nice clean pages and tried to decide what I should transfer over. It's bitter sweet though. I realized I'm not ready to say good by to my old planner yet. It represents over two years of my life.
  • The first entry on August 1, 2005 was the last day that we saw Seth & Tamara together.
  • It also has the retreat I went on in September 2005 which ended up being my last even as a Creative Memories Consultant.
  • It has four Dierks Bentley concerts
  • Both of my trips to Pennsylvania
  • Veronica's Visit
  • Over a dozen SSWA/Darrcie events
  • Countless coffee and dinner dates

and so much more. It's my life! In time it will all get translated to my scrapbook albums. Even if I don't have pictures I copy the details of my daily life into calendar pages so none of it will get lost. Still, that's a lot of living that's happend in two + years.

My new day planner goes to December 2009. I wonder what I'll be looking back on by then!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Snow-more snow

Well, in true SW BC fashion, the snow is mostly melted. Good thing! I was getting nervous :)

I have to share this email. As previously mentioned Dad in in Alberta for work for two weeks. He doesn't want to run up his long distance bill on his cell phone so he's taken to emailing Mom from the library on his way home from work. He's cc'd me now too. This is yesterday's message:
Hi Hon, I have forgotten how cold this place can get, I left for work this morn, after a shower and breakfast, and just about froze my wet hair to my skull. We have a high of about -15. Whooppee!! You can have it. Everybody was teasing me about how wet B.C. is, well it is dry here, I'll grant them that, but no-one told me about being it being freeze-dried!! The wind is COLD. Oh well, 3 more sleeps and I'm outtahere. Mind you, I hear home is +3 with possible snow, maybe we should consider Arizona. Anyway, doing allright, talk to you soon...Love Ted.
It just makes me giggle every time I read it!

Hee hee


In case the small print doesn't show up, it says "I'll find a picture for it later."

Monday, November 26, 2007

Snow ja vu?

I guess it's good that I keep a blog. One year and one day ago I posted this It's Snowing!

I could basically write that word for word again tonight (minus the bit about my dad). It's snowing again. What's with the end of November anyways?!?! They predicted it this morning. It was a cold grey the-street-lights-never-turned-off kind of day. It was POURING when I drove home. Now it's SNOWING. SNOW!

I shouldn't be so surprised but, contrary to what you read, we don't actually get that much snow here. Or we never used to at least. I don't expect this to stick around very long but it IS sticking right now.

Yes I've seen an LP before

My boss is nine years older than me. A bonna fide child of the eighties. It bothers her to no end that I don't recognize certain artists who she loved. And that I've never actually seen any episode of "Miami Vice". Don Johnson is was...and still is...her teen idol.

She's moving right now and while she was unpacking boxes she found a stack of records and brought them in to the office to show me.

- Platinum Blonde (her all time favourite, that was a 45)
- George Michael
- U2 - Joshua Tree
- Brian Adams - Reckless
- Paula Abdul
- Whitney Houston

and a few more. Now, contrary to popular belief, aside from Platinum Blonde, I've heard of all of those artists. I could probably even name a song by each of them (except George Michael) There are other groups that I couldn't say the same thing about though. Glass Tiger anyone?!?!

Anyways, I have seen and played LP's. We even used to have a record player. The only record I actually remember was the Golden Book "The Happy Man and His Dump Truck" Seth especially would listen to that record over and over and over.

It was cool to see the LP's though. A little slice of history ;) What was your favourite? Do you still have it?

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Well, those guys did that but the other guys didn't like it...

I generally watch two football games a year. The CFL Grey Cup and the NFL Superbowl. Today was the Grey Cup. Traditionally the Grey Cup is when I start making my Christmas cards. I'm having a Stampin' Up class on Tuesday though so instead of making a mess, I cleaned mine up.

I talked to Robert during the third period...no, they're called quarters. Sorry. Anyways, I told him I missed him. He usually watches the games with me and explains everything. I told him I needed him there to explain the difference between turn overs and pop tarts :)

He and Seth had driven up to Edmonton to see Dad and watch the game at my Uncle Doug's house. They left early so Robert asked me to keep him up to date on the score. I told him "well, the guys in green scored because the other guys tried to knock him down but they didn't get to him soon enough" That made him laugh and say "I like your commentary" :)

Now I'm watching hockey. A sport I actually care about!

~Heidi

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Reason #2

When I don't blog for a few days it's usually for one of two reasons.
1. Nothing has happened
2. Something has happend
It's rarely the first one because if nothing is happening I can usually find something inane to blog about [[i'll wait while my loyal readers nod in agreement]] If something has happened and I haven't blogged it's usually because I don't know how to word it or I'm waiting for a resolution of some sort. This time something happened on Wednesday and I got my resolution tonight so I'm ready to blog.

I worked at the store on Wednesday. I had read on the schedule that I was supposed to do "calls". We have a big sale coming up this weekend (30% off on everything in the store Friday and Saturday) I knew I was down for "calls" but I didn't know what that entailed or what I'd be doing. I got to work on Wednesday and our assistant manager was in. I asked her what I should do and mentioned the call thing. She didn't know what that meant, what script I should use or where the phone numbers were. We placed a quick call to our manager, no answer. Fine. I kept busy doing regular stuff. Helping customers. Straightening the store, etc.

Our manager called at about 8:30 (the mall closes at 9). When she found out I hadn't been doing the calls she was LIVID. I passed the call to my assistant manager though because I take direction from her. After the call we managed to find the phone number list but we still didn't have the script so we didn't bother.

This whole thing made me really nervous. Through no fault of my own (other than I suppose I COULD have looked harder for the info I needed) I hadn't done my job. Tonight (Friday) I was "on call" during this sale. I actually took the day off from my day job (that's another story all together). I got up at my regular time and went and got my brakes done (another story). Then I went to Mom's and had breakfast and then Christmas shopping with Jenna. I did stop in at the store to check my schedule for next week. I work tomorrow (Saturday) as scheduled and then NOTHING until next Saturday.

That was weird and made me even more nervous. "No hours? Did I screw up that bad? Is this punishment?" And on and on. The manager wasn't in so I couldn't talk to her. Around 2pm I got a call from the manager saying "yes I need you tonight" (I had been instructed to call closer to 3:30 to find out.) So tonight I went in, nervous but knowing that it really wasn't my fault that I hadn't done my job.

Within a few minutes of my shift starting I found out that the assistant manager had been let go. No comment on Wednesday whatsoever other than "we did get all the calls made".

Phew. I'm safe.

This isn't a huge surprise. I liked our assistant manager well enough but she didn't like working at the store and she had an incredibly negative attitude. The Wednesday thing wasn't want got her fired but it probably was "the straw that broke the camels back" so to speak. My boss's exact words were "we're moving forward". Works for me!

She then told me that she might be looking to train me as a closer and a key holder. We discussed this in my initial interview and it looks like it may be time. She wants me to think about it.

We also had a stellar night tonight. Again, we're not commission but our sales are tracked to encourage performance. We have some contests going on right now. I forget the details but I won BOTH of todays!!! That means I get two $10 gift certificates for product. Sweet!!! Now to decide what to buy :)

So there you go. That's what's been going on in my life. When I took this job I said I wanted to experience retail and by golly I am!!!!

~Heidi

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Finally this information in my head is useful!

I love maps. Always have. I find geography fascinating. My mom has a puzzle of the USA. Each piece is shaped like a state and they all lock together (except for New England. There are a few states on each piece up there) I can put that map together pretty fast. Basic knowledge of where which states are in relation to others is good to have. Today it was very useful.

My co-worker and I had to compare two lists. Her's was organized by name, mine was organized by ZIP CODE. Not state. Not city. Zip Code. Luckily I know that zip codes start in the North East and run down the coast and then across the country. It took most of the afternoon and gave us a lot of laughs but man, my basic knowledge of geography, and state abbreviations for that matter, definitely came in handy.

Too much like my dad

I figured out what my biggest problem is. I'm way too much like my dad. That's why I don't do well with Aaron around. I worry too much.

The day we took Meredith to the airport I was updating her parents on my brothers and their big move. Her mom kept asking "Well, what does your mom think? Is she okay with them moving so far away? Doesn't she worry?" During the course of our conversation I realized that in their family, the roles are reversed. Mrs. K is the worrier. In my family, my dad is the worrier. He gets it from his mom. She was the queen of worrying. Down to the end. She didn't want to die because she was worried about her family. (I think she'd be pretty happy with how we turned out but I know she'd prefer to be her to worry about us herself)

I get that from my dad. If I stop and just breathe I can be like my mom who does worry but doesn't show it or let it affect her mood. My inclination is to get all worked up about stuff though. To the point that it can keep me from sleeping at night. Just like Dad.

The good news is that I did get some great traits from my dad too. Things that have served me well in business and in life. Not the worrying part though. That's never good.

~Heidi

Monday, November 19, 2007

How do they do it?

I was tired last night. We did another mini layout in the store which means we only switched half of it around. It was a lot of climbing ladders and lifting and hanging product though. By the time I got off around eight I was exausted.

Because Mom and Dad are both gone, Aaron is supposed to be staying with me. I talked to him after church and he said he'd either stop by the store in the afternoon (since he hangs out at the mall anyways) or call me. I got off at eight and I hadn't heard from him. HE doesn't have a cell phone so I couldn't call him. I stopped at my place just in case he was there. He wasn't. Then I drove over to Mom and Dad's. He wasn't there.

I called Grandpa's (gotta use their phone. They have cheap long distance LOL) Aaron arrived while I was on the phone with Mom. He's lucky. I would NOT have been happy if I had to chase him all over creation. Especially since I was tired.

I don't know how my parents do it. I'm half their age and he exhausts me. Remind me again why I think I want children???

~Heidi

PS Once I found him, I brought him back to my place and everything was good. I made cookies and hot chocolate, he played on the computer, read and then we both went to bed. He got up without a fight this morning too. Mom's back tomorrow. She can have him!

That scared me

Okay, I'm all super freaky ready for Christmas and stuff but I am SO not ready for the cold weather that accompanies it. This morning the weather man said it was minus one. MINUS?!?! Nooooo. Made getting dressed easy though. Warm fuzzy sweater? Check. Nice tall fuzzy boots? Check. Cute not so fuzzy skirt? Check...hey, I've still got to look good LOL

Hey V, I just realized that my store sells fleece lined jeans for you. I'd like you to know that I use you as an example on a regular basis "When my friend from Australia was here, she wore those the whole time!" LOL Not that Canadians don't wear fleece lined jeans. It's more that those of us in the lower mainland don't usually bother.

Unless it's minus one.

~Heidi

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I feel left out

As I mentioned, Mom is in Alberta this weekend for my cousins wedding. I talked to the boys yesterday and they were on their way up to Grandpa's to join the family. They didn't go to the wedding but they will get to see everyone.

As an aside they've made it a personal mission to rid the world of all excess VHS. They found a video store that was going out of business and was selling their VHS for a buck a piece. Between the two boys they walked out of there with ONE HUNDRED videos!!! Psychos. Seth has at least 50 here already. Crazy.

Anyways, so Mom is in Alberta, the boys are joining her and this morning I took Dad to the airport. Turns out he's going there for a business trip too. He called this afternoon and he had arrived safely. He was at Grandpa's with Mom, the boys and at least three of my aunts, uncles and their families.

I feel left out.

I'm here and technically responsible for Aaron but I work today from 3:30-7:30 and I have dance tomorrow night so I won't see him very much anyways...aside from the fact that he's apparently sleeping here.

I want to see family though!

Next year. That's the plan. I'm going next summer no matter what.

~Heidi

Friday, November 16, 2007

Well, that was interesting

Tonight I bailed out my boss by accompanying her to a political fundraising dinner. She didn't have anyone to go with and she was dreading going alone so I agreed to go with her. It was interesting. As a general rule I avoid politics. I know it would be good to pay more attention but I just don't care. This event was a lot of pandering and rah-rah stuff from and for an elected official that we haven't had much success working with but it was interesting to see what people get excited about. It was a decent sized crowd too. And hey, I got free dinner out of it :)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I'm trying to complete my collection

My company was started in 1915. The current Bylaws were written in 1963. Why then can I not find copies from before 2000??? That's 37 years of missing Bylaws. I realize they don't apply any more but for historical "the way we were" purposes, they're good to have.

I really want to read the ones from 1997. It's been driving me NUTS that I can't find these stupid papers. I've looked all over my office (the logical place for this kind of information to be stored) in the storage room, down in the cold scary storage bin and hassled accounting for them.

I finally broke down and emailed our lawyer. He only has Bylaws from 1993 and some undated ones. ARRGH!

I gave up on ever finding them after putting out the broadcast to all my co-workers so it could drive them nuts too.

BINGO! Accounting found the 1997 ones. Sweet! Is it sad that I was so excited to read them? They contained exactly what I was looking for too.

Now I want to complete my collection though. 1963 and up. Think ebay would have them? LOL

I feel naked!

My mom went to my cousin's wedding this weekend. I let her borrow my camera. I feel naked without it. It's not that I use it all that often but I carry it with me e.v.e.r.y.w.h.e.r.e. My purse is lighter than normal and it's just weird. I don't like this feeling!
~Heidi

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Santa has got the coolest new house!

Okay, I'll admit. My Christmas cheer is a direct result from working in the mall. You can't escape it. The excitement is tangible! You know what? I'm totally okay with that :) I was in the store yesterday because we have a head office visit today and we had to make it all pretty. The elves were running around like mad outside setting up Santa's awesome new "Whoville" inspired house. On Saturday it was all in crates. Yesterday about half of it was set up and things were starting to whir and spin. Santa himself arrives on Saturday. I can't wait! I'll get pictures as soon as it's all ready to go. Who knows. I may even get a picture with Santa myself this year!
~Heidi

Monday, November 12, 2007

O Tannenbaum

Last year I had a really hard time with Christmas. I never did get "in to the Christmas spirit". In fact I was pretty much the opposite of that for the whole season. This year, for some reason, I am very excited for Christmas. Maybe it's because I'm working retail. Maybe it's because I didn't get "in to" it last year so I'm ready for it. Whatever is causing it though, I'm not arguing. Even if it is only mid November!!! I bought a tree on Sunday and set it up with lights and what ornaments I have today. BTW, ornament donations are gladly accepted. My tree is only 4 feet tall but it's still kind of bare.

I'm drinking egg nog, baking cookies, listening to all my Christmas cd's and generally just feeling good about the season.
Only 43 days left!
~Heidi


Wow, wind!!!

There is a MAJOR windstorm going on right now. In fact it's been blowing all night and woke me up a lot. Everytime the wind blows like this it reminds me of one of my favourite movies "Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day" When Piglet gets blown away and his shirt unravels. I loved that movie.

Winnie the Pooh: Happy "Winds-day", Piglet.
Piglet: [being blown away] Well... it isn't... very happy... f-for me.
Winnie the Pooh: Where are you going, Piglet?
Piglet: That's what I'm asking myself, where? W-Whoops! P-P-P-Pooh!
Winnie the Pooh: And what do you think you will answer yourself?

I'm not loving the wind so much...although it is playing nicely into my Christmas spirit. More on that later :)

~Heidi

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Lest We Forget

One of the biggest honours I had in highschool was in grade twelve when I was chosen to read "Flanders Fields" at the Remembrance Day assembly. I always loved the Remembrance Day. The assemblies were always very formal and somber. I was in choir for grade 11 and 12. I forget the songs we sung but I know one year whe had an awesome arrangement of "Amazing Grace" and I think another year we may have sung "Bring Him Home" from Les Miserables. We had twin girls in our school that were bagpipe players too. In grade 10 the princpal cried after their performance. Very touching.

Here's the poem. It still gives me chills to read it.

In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD Doctor and Teacher (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Word of the day #27: meme

Ashley tagged me to do a "book meme". I think I've done it before but I don't even know what a "meme" is. So, I looked it up:

meme /mim/ –noun
a cultural item that is transmitted by repetition in a manner analogous to the biological transmission of genes.

So, I still can't say that I really get it but I'll do the exercise anyways.

Here is what you have to do:
You have to open the book you’re currently reading on page 161 and read the fifth sentence on the page, then think of 5 bloggers to tag with.


I am currently reading the oh so edifying "Cordina's Royal Family: Bennet & Camilla" by Nora Roberts. The fifth sentence of page 161 reads: "We can't always choose what we feel, but there are other choices."

There. Now, I tag anyone who knows what "meme" is and can properly explain it to me LOL

~Heidi

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Hey, I know him!!!

One of our local tv stations likes to profile different programs and "local heros". I tend to listen to them but not watch them. Tonight they were profiling an employment service. The speaker was one of my ex-coworkers!!! That was cool. Now I know where he went when our contract ended :)

CMA 2007 Outcomes

Today, I'm glad I live in the Pacific Time Zone. I was able to start watching the live broadcast at 5pm (8pm Eastern) like everyone else. I went out at seven, came back just past nine and didn't miss a thing because the show is now being broadcast in the Pacific Time Zone. Sweet!

So, how did I do with my predictions? (and I know I was a bit loose with exactly who would win but work with me here)

Entertainer of the Year
Kenny Chesney
Correct, mostly. I'm happy :)

Male Vocalist of the Year
Brad Paisley
Wrong on the "Think Will Win" but right on the "Want" Sweet!!! WTG Brad. You totally deserve it. Great speech too. Very heartfelt.

Female Vocalist of the Year
Carrie Underwood
Correct. And wasn't Dierks a wonderful presenter? Even if he couldn't say "CMA Female Vocalist of the Year" LOL I loved the bit about having a crush on Alison Kraus :)

Vocal Group of the Year
Rascal Flatts
Correct. Surprise. Boring.

Vocal Duo of the Year
Sugarland
Okay, that previous surprise was sarcastic. This one really WAS a surprise. A good one, even if I'm not a fan of Jennifer Nettles' voice. They do have good songs. Note that they were my second choice so I'm saying I got it right :D

Horizon Award
Taylor Swift
Wrong. Cool. I like Taylor. I didn't think she could pull it off though. Loved her comment "this is the best thing about my senior year" LOL

Musical Event
"Find Out Who Your Friends Are" -- Tracy Lawrence Featuring Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney
Wrong. Definitely didn't see that coming. Especially since it's Tracy's first CMA, Tim McGraw wasn't even there (I don't think), and the label fought having the collaboration version released. I'd say this song was an underdog from the get go. It's nice to see it triumph. It makes me sad that I didn't go see Tracy at Billy Bob's in April though. Oh well.

Song of the Year
"Give It Away" -- Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson
Wrong on the Think, right on the Want.
I still remember the first time I heard this song. I was fighting traffic on my way in to Vancouver for the writing course I took in June of 2006. I had grabbed Burger King for dinner and I tuned in to KMPS out of Seattle for "Tony Thomas' 5 o'clock Test Track". This was the song they played. I loved it from the opening bar and it made me smile for the rest of the evening. It's one strong song off a fantastic album and I'm glad it won.

Jamey Johnson's speech was hysterical too. Thanking his ex-wife was genius LOL

Single of the Year
"Before He Cheats" -- Carrie Underwood
Correct. Without looking it up, I'm pretty sure this song totally embodies what a "single" of year is supposed to be.

Album of the Year
It Just Comes Natural -- George Strait
Correct. I called it. As much as I wanted Dierks to win (and I admit, I was nervous because I think he had a chance) George really did put out an exceptional album.

Video of the Year
"Online" -- Brad Paisley
Second choice again. Close enough. This is his third win in this category. Well done. His wife (Kimberly Williams-Paisley) was a brilliant presenter too. Definitely the highlight of the evening.

So 7 out of 11. I didn't post about Musician of the Year but it's no surprise that Jerry Douglas took it again.

Final comments?
The last Eagles album was released before I was born!!! Loved their performance tonight though. Very well done.

Rascal Flatts? Painful. Especially with Jamie Foxx. Wrong on so many levels.

Reba and LeAnn? Very nice. Not sure about the first outfit LeAnn had on though. You're fit. We get it. :P

Ummm Brad, absolutely brilliant. The marching band, Kellie and Taylor were awesome.

Kenny, not too sure about the pants.

Taylor and Carrie both looked very uncomfortable on stage. Rodney was the exact opposite.

Interesting show though. It's over for another year and now we can update the titled "Three time winner and current reigning CMA Entertainer of the Year, KENNY CHESNEY" LOL

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

A new meaning for "layout"

Monday we did a "layout" at the store. For me "layout" is a scrapbooking term. At the store, layout means changing every. single. piece. of product on the floor!!! Changing how all the wall fixtures are arranged, changing what pieces are hung where, changing the position of floor fixtures. E.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. It's a huge job and it's like a brand new store now! We had all but one staff member in and even with all the prep work we had done on the weekend, it still took over four hours. LOTS of folding, lots of hanging, and my first introduction to the steamer machine! It was fun for about .25 seconds. Seriously. When you steam one shirt three times and it's still not "right", the novelty wears off.

I also got to play with snow!!! Cool fake plastic stuff. I steamed all the clothes for the window display and my boss dressed the manequins. Then I got to do all the decorating. Placing the boxes and the teddy bear *exactly* as shown in the picture and then sprinkling snow all over everything. I happen to think it looks pretty darn good :D It had better, it's going to be like that for the next three months!!!

CMA Predictions

Last year I got eight out of eleven right. I think it's a closer race this year so it will be interesting to see the results.

Entertainer of the Year
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
Rascal Flatts
George Strait
Keith Urban
Who I think will win: I think Kenny, Keith and Brad are front runners. Kenny scooped it from Keith last year but Keith has been on a successful tour this year. Any of them could take it.
Who I want to win: Anyone but Rascal Flatts LOL I'd love to see Brad walk away with it.

Male Vocalist of the Year
Kenny Chesney
Brad Paisley
George Strait
Josh Turner
Keith Urban
Who I think will win: Keith Urban
Who I want to win: I'd love to see Brad or Josh take it but Josh is too new and I don't know if Brad can trump Keith

Female Vocalist of the Year
Alison Krauss
Miranda Lambert
Martina McBride
Reba McEntire
Carrie Underwood
Who I think will win: Carrie Underwood
Who I want to win:
I wouldn't be heartbroken if she took it. Anyone notice that Faith Hill isn't even nominated this year?

Vocal Group of the Year
Alison Krauss & Union Station Featuring Jerry Douglas
Dixie Chicks
Emerson Drive
Little Big Town
Rascal Flatts
Who I think will win: Rascal Flats
Who I want to win: Emerson Drive. Gotta stay loyal to the Canadian boys :)

Vocal Duo of the Year
Big & Rich
Brooks & Dunn
Montgomery Gentry
Sugarland
The Wreckers
Who I think will win: Either Brooks & Dunn like normal, or Sugarland who are HOT this year
Who I want to win: Weird as they are, I'd like to see Big & Rich take it. Or The Wreckers but I don't think the later have a chance considering they've announced that they're splitting up following this tour.

Horizon Award
Jason Aldean
Rodney Atkins
Little Big Town
Kellie Pickler
Taylor Swift
Who I think will win: Jason Aldean although Rodney Atkins could scoop it on the strength of his singles.
Who I want to win: Jason Aldean

Musical Event
"Because of You" -- Reba McEntire With Kelly Clarkson
"Find Out Who Your Friends Are" -- Tracy Lawrence Featuring Tim McGraw and Kenny Chesney
"Hey Good Lookin'" -- Jimmy Buffett With George Strait and Alan Jackson
"Missing You" -- Alison Krauss and John Waite
"The Reason Why" -- Vince Gill With Guest Vocalist Alison Krauss
Who I think will win: Because of You
Who I want to win: Because of You

Song of the Year
"Anyway" -- Martina McBride, Brad Warren and Brett Warren
"Before He Cheats" -- Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins
"Give It Away" -- Bill Anderson, Buddy Cannon and Jamey Johnson
"Lost in This Moment" -- John Rich, Keith Anderson and Rodney Clawson
"Stupid Boy" -- Dave Berg, Deanna Bryant and Sarah Buxton
Who I think will win: These are all strong songs. I'm going to say Stupid Boy or Anyway but I'm really not sure
Who I want to win: I'd like to see Anyway or Give it Away win

Single of the Year
"Anyway" -- Martina McBride
"Before He Cheats" -- Carrie Underwood
"Lost in This Moment" -- Big & Rich
"Ticks" -- Brad Paisley
"Wrapped" -- George Strait
Who I think will win: Before He Cheats
Who I want to win: Before He Cheats. The cross over appeal of this song has been good for country music in general.

Album of the Year
5th Gear -- Brad Paisley
It Just Comes Natural -- George Strait
Long Trip Alone -- Dierks Bentley
Love, Pain & the Whole Crazy Thing -- Keith Urban
These Days -- Vince Gill
Who I think will win: Keith or George
Who I want to win: DIERKS!

Video of the Year
"Anyway" -- Martina McBride
"Before He Cheats" -- Carrie Underwood
"Moments" -- Emerson Drive
"Online" -- Brad Paisley
"You Save Me" -- Kenny Chesney
Who I think will win: Before He Cheats...or Online
Who I want to win: You Save Me :)

Monday, November 05, 2007

When you're perpetually late...

change the clocks!

I'm a punctual person. Baring difficulties in traffic or other issues, I will always be right on time. Not early, but on time. The digital clock on the phones in our office is about three minutes fast. Fast according to my cell phone and car radio clock, the latter which is synced to the radio. Other staff here agree. So this morning, when we had to change the clock on the phone to compensate for daylight savings anyways, we also took the opportunity to fix the minutes. Now I won't be late...or if I am I can't blame it on the clock LOL

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Where have I been?

I'm stealing this blog format from Menjiness.

10/29 Back at dance after basically a month. We don't dance on holidays (Thanksgiving) and if we have a Friday dance there isn't one the following Monday. Because I had to miss 10/15 due to training I haven't been at dance since 10/1! It was nice to be back.

10/30 Dinner with Mom & Dad. I've been craving Mom's lasanga for WEEKS. I brought most of the ingredients and had her walk me through the process of making it so I can try it on my own. I also took most of the leftovers to stock my freezer :D

10/31 Halloween but I got called in to work. Our mall hosts trick-or-treating. My store was out of candy by the time I got there but I still saw lots of little princesses, ninja's and spiderman's (men's?)

11/1 Board meeting in Vancouver. Pretty intense but it went well. We went out for dinner afterwards as one of our members is retiring. Late night but really nice.

11/2 Finished the board meeting. Left the hotel around 1:30. Got back to the office, unloaded and went and got my brakes checked. Dad says he can probably do a lot of the work. God bless Dad.

Took a nap and then went to a "fall party" with friends.

11/3 Worked from 10-2:30. Wednesday I had exactly $0 for sales. Today I hit my goal (whatever it was) by halfway through my shift. Yeah me! My boss was pretty impressed :)

I went grocery shopping after work and then came home for another quick nap before going to bible study.

Tomorrow we have a potluck after church to break in the new kitchen (hopefully we don't actually break it!) Then I have a mandatory, potluck, staff meeting for work. Food, food, food! Tis the season :)

~Heidi

Monday, October 29, 2007

What's on your playlist?

Okay, so I'm kind of beind the times and still working with CD's but you get the idea. So, what's in my player lately? Brace yourself. It's NOT what you'd expect.

Nickleback: All the Right Reasons
Aaron was mighty confused when I asked to borrow this cd. I admit some of the lyrics are a bit out there for me (actually a lot of them) but I really, really like Photograph and Rockstar. If you haven't seen the video for Rockstar, go to YouTube and look it up. It's AWESOME. Of course the fact that lead singer Chad Kroeger is a local boy doesn't hurt either. Gotta support local talent :D

Bon Jovi: Have a Nice Day
Now that "Who Says You Can't Go Home" isn't being played every second song on country radio, I can actually stand to listen to this cd. I really like "Have a Nice Day" and I'm loving the sound of "Last Cigarette" for some reason. I can see why this is such a popular album.
I'm not sold on their new "Lost Highway" album yet but maybe a few years down the road I'll like it too.
Newsboys: Shine: The Hits
Somehow I never connected the song "Shine" with Newsboys but when I did, I decided I wanted to hear the whole cd. I love that song and while the lyrics are kind of twisted "make a vegetarian barbque hamster?" the sentiment is good and the beat rocks.

All of these cd's have been out for awhile and are outside my usual little country box but I'm just discovering them and enjoying them.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

And now I don't

...have a roommate that is. In my last roommate update I wondered if I should post the crazy ups and downs of this ride. Dawn said yes so here's another one.

Amanda's not ready to move out. Fair enough. I didn't leave until three days before my twenty-fifth birthday. There's no point in rushing it. She was worried about telling me but *I* am not worried and I told her so. Who knows, she may change her mind by January. Or, the boys may get really good paying jobs and be willing to pay me storage. Or I may find another roommate. Something will work out. For now, the ride continues.

My new job is going well. I worked yesterday from 2-6 and today from 12:30-5:30. My feet are SORE but I'm getting the hang of things and even starting to remember where certain things are in the store. Today it was just my boss and I and I had really high sales that way over shot the goal she set for me. Yeah!!!

Yesterday was quiet and it's MUCH harder to work when it's quiet. Today it was busier and I learned how to do mark-downs. I got to use the little pricer gun and everything. Small things for small minds LOL It's good though. My boss is super supportive and makes sure to give me feedback on what I'm doing right or wrong. I'm looking forward to the Christmas season although I'm pretty sure all our customers will have their shopping done by Remembrance Day :P

~Heidi

Friday, October 26, 2007

just the facts, ma'am

The rules:
A. Each player lists 6 facts/habits about themselves.
B. The rules of the game are posted at the beginning before those facts/habits are listed.
C. At the end of the post, the player then tags 6 people and posts their names

I saw this on Nesa's blog but Stacy actually tagged me (and first to I might add) so I guess I have to do it ;)

Six facts about me:
  1. I only wash my hair every four or five days. I keep it up in a braid and it doesn’t require more washing then that.
  2. I have an irrational fear of running out of food. I like having a very full cupboard and freezer.
  3. I prefer traveling alone. Both on a plane and in a car.
  4. I miss my commute.
  5. I like Starbucks but I have yet to order just plain coffee there. It’s always a latte or chai or something else equally as satisfying.
  6. If it weren't for commercial breaks I wouldn't get anything done. I swear they're the best invention yet.
I'm tagging the following six people:
1. Dawn
2. Miriam
3. Sherilyn
4. Nancy
5. Patti
6. Diane

Thursday, October 25, 2007

I talked to Seth tonight

Robert has a job at a manufacturing plant. Seth's holding out to get in with the company he originally applied for. It may be a few weeks until they're ready to hire him though so we brainstormed on what he can do in the meantime. They sound like they're happy though which is good.

I'm enjoying having the apartment all to myself. I clean it and it STAYS that way! Any mess is all mine and I'm okay with that. Also without all the suitcases and bedding all over the living room it feels bigger.

I've had the opportunity to meet up with some friends this week which has made saying good bye a lot easier. Sunday I hung out with Jenna and Will briefly, Monday Jackie came over and today Tracy and I went out for lunch. I love having friends :)

Seven Deadly Sins Survey

I borrowed this from tosin

Wrath
Who did you last get angry with? Myself. See the sloth section. Oh, and the cop who gave me a ticket.
What is your weapon of choice? Sarcasm
Would you hit a member of the opposite sex? I can see myself slapping someone but I would feel SICK immediately afterwards
How about the same sex? If provoked. I have three brothers. I can get physical fast although I haven't in a long time.
Who was the last person who got really angry at you? The guy I cut off.
What is your pet peeve? Only one? People who can't park between the lines
Do you keep grudges, or can you let them go easily? I do but I'm getting better at letting go and realizing that it really doesn't matter.

Sloth
What is one thing you're suppose to do daily that you haven't? Dishes
What is the latest you've ever woken up? 11:30...on Christmas. I nap a lot too though.
Name a person you've been meaning to contact, but haven't? Melissa, Steve
What is the last lame excuse that you made? I don't feeeeeeel like it
Have you ever watched an infomercial all the way through? No. I hate infomercials. Interesting that this is the second time they've come up in as many days though.
How many times did you hit the snooze button on your alarm clock this morning? My alarm went off at 6:35. My cell phone alarm went off at 7:05, and again at 7:15. Something has to change!

Gluttony
What is your overpriced yuppie beverage of choice? Grande, no-water, no-foam, extra-hot, soy tazo chai
Are you a meat eater? Oh yeah! And I always say I'm glad I'm not Jewish because I love pork :D Although I never buy it. I always have it at Mom's.
What is the greatest amount of alcohol you've had in one sitting/outing/event? Can anyone say "Phil-a-del-phia?!?!" I can remember every drink I had that night though.
Are you comfortable with your drinking and eating habits? Drinking yes because it's rare. Eating no because I'm addicted.
Do you enjoy candy and sweets? Sweets as in baking? Definitely. More than food.
Which do you prefer: sweets, salty foods or spicy foods? Salty please :)
Have you ever looked at a small house pet or child and thought, "lunch!"? That is disgusting.

Greed
How many credit cards do you own? Just one that I owe too much on hence the second job.
If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it? Buy a house for me, a house for my parents, a car, travel and invest the $50 that is left over.
Would you rather be rich or famous? Rich. Definitely rich. Fame is fleeting.
Would you accept a boring job if it meant that you would make megabucks? Pshewwwwww probably not. Well, maybe. It depends on what kind of boring it is.

Pride
What's one thing that you have done that you're most proud of? Travelled around Texas alone
What is one thing that you have done that your parents are most proud of? Held a secure job for a number of years
What thing would you like to accomplish late in your life? To be financially comfortable enough to be able to volunteer only and not work
Do you get annoyed by coming in second place? Yep, second place is the first loser
Have you ever entered a contest of skill, knowing you were of much higher skill than all the other competitors? Probably. A specific instance doesn't come to mind though.
Have you ever cheated to get a better score? Grade 7 French anyone?
What did you do today that you're proud of? Got my @$$ out of bed

Lust
How many people have you seen naked (not counting movies, family, strippers, locker rooms)? Like full frontal? Very, very, very few.
How many people have seen you naked (not counting physicians, doctors, family, locker rooms, or when you were a young child)? Live? Even less.
Have you ever caught yourself staring at the chest/crotch of a person of your chosen sex during a normal conversation? Women with low cut shirts are a pet peeve of mine. I just think it's skanky and if *I* can't look away then what chance does a guy have???
What is your favorite body part of a person of your gender choice? Eyes, specifically eye CONTACT. That's another pet peeve. People who can't maintain eye contact. Drives me nuts.
Have you ever had sexual encounters (including kissing/making out) with multiple persons?at the same time? Mmmmm no.
Have you ever been propositioned by a prostitute? No, thank goodness

Envy
What item of your friends would you most want to have for your own? A laptop
Who would you want to go on "Trading Spaces" with? My mom. She needs it, bad.
If you could be anyone who existed in the world, who would you be? Ah "Who Would You Be" Long term or short term? Dang that's HARD! I don't really know. I'll have to think about that and get back to you.
Have you ever been cheated on? Nope. That's one of the benefits of not having a long term relationship!
Have you ever wished you had a physical feature different from your own? Not so much. I am what and who I am.
What inborn trait do you see in others that you wish you had for yourself? What's the opposite of procrastination?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I have a roommate!

Part of me wonders if I should continue to share the ups and downs of my roommate search with my blog readers because it seems to change daily. It is real life though and I have to tell SOMEONE! So, the latest developemnt. Sunday at church I overheard my friend Amanda commenting to her mom that it seems like all she's doing any more is driving. She lives with her parents in the town where I used to work but works, goes to church and has lots of friends in the town where I live. In passing I told her "Well, if you're looking to move West, I'm looking for a roommate".

Last night she called me "Are you really looking for a roommate?"
"Yes, providing I can figure out a way to get rid of Seth's stuff"

Anyways, she came by and had a look at the place. She's crunching numbers and getting used to the idea right now but it looks like she may be ready to move in on January 1st. That gives her Christmas at home, a few months to get used to the idea of moving out for the first time and it gives the boys time to get settled in Alberta and figure out what they want to do with their stuff.

So that's the latest development. I'll keep you posted! Oh, and Amanda is one of the ones I went to Texas with. She's the one on the left in this picture.

~Heidi

Sunday, October 21, 2007

First Day Drama

I was distracted on Saturday evening do I didn’t take the time to type out the drama from my first day at the store. First off, I want to say, I am thankful that my customers are so patient!

I processed maybe two normal sales before the fun started.

I had a customer come in with three BAGS worth of stuff to return. Apparently our fitting rooms aren’t good enough for her. She just bought two or three sizes of each thing and took them all home. There were four different receipts worth of stuff. Thankfully she was really patient and had obviously done this before because she made a point of helping me out and making sure that I did it in order. It took for EVER though.

Next was a lady who came in with a pair of pants and a sweater to return. I guess she had bought them and a few days later she got an email from the store offering her 20% off her purchases. She hadn’t even taken the clothing out of the bag so she brought them back and wanted to return them and re-purchase them using her 20% off coupon and adding another sweater. I returned them and credited her credit card. Then I rang the purchase through but I forgot the 20%. So I returned it all and then when I went to put it through again, my debit machine froze. Uggh.

Needless to say cashing out that evening was interesting because of all the returns. The good news is that even though I felt like I was in a fog the whole time because I wasn’t totally comfortable with what I was doing, everything balanced out, I didn’t lose my cool and the customers went away happy…even if they spent more time with us then they originally had planned.

My next shift is scheduled for next Saturday. I’ll report in then.

~Heidi

Too Many Good-byes

Wow. What a day. I was at Meredith's this morning by 8 am to drive to the airport with her and her parents. We had a few stops on the way and nasty Saturday traffic to fight which made it interesting. She got off okay and from what I saw, Singapore Airlines is living up to their reputation. I just hope her flight goes as well as the checking in portion did. She's almost halfway there if my calculations are correct. She should arrive some time tomorrow, which is actually Monday morning.

Then I came home and did my first shift at the store. Busy Saturday's are a great way to train. I learned how to process sales AND returns (repetion really is the best way to learn) and I discovered that while I enjoy being in the store, being on my feet for an extended period of time like that is going to take getting used to. My supervisor said I did well though and I am looking forward to another shift...which right now is scheduled for next Saturday.

After work I came home. Seth and Robert were both here doing some last minute packing. It turns out, and this doesn't surprise me, that Robert's going with Seth. The boys are only 17 months apart in age and being apart for this last year has been hard on them because they are so close. Robert could probably find work down here but he'd still be separated from Seth and who knows what kind of position he'd find.

Right now I'm finding it hard to be losing my best friend and two brothers all in one day but at the same time I'm happy and excited for all three of them. I'm also overtired which is making me emotional :)

Oh, and the roommate thing? Because Seth really didn't prepare himself before leaving he'll pay for rent for November for sure because his stuff is all here. In December we'll see. It will all depend on the housing situation that the boys find. It could well be that I'll bring all Robert's stuff here (it's currently in Mom & Dad's garage) and store it and they'll pay rent as a storage fee. Or, I may try and find a new roommate. Or, move. I don't know. I'm not too worried about it right now but I will have to make some decisions in the next while. I'll keep you posted.

Meanwhile, please keep me in your thoughts as I go through all these changes. Thanks :)

~Heidi

Friday, October 19, 2007

Analyzing my speed dial

My speed dial will only be like this for this week but I'm pretty proud of it so I want to post it.

2 - Home
3 - Dad (three letters)
4 - Seth (four letters)
5 - Jenna (five letters)
6 - Robert (six letters)
7 - 107.1 (Radio Station)
8 - Meredith (eight letters)
9 - 93.7 (Radio Station)

Isn't that cool? How it all works out?

Of course after this week Seth and Meredith will both be taken off speed dial because I won't be calling them as much but for now it all fits!

~Heidi

Next up, the coffee pot!

Actually I've mastered the coffee pot now too. One of my coworkers our organization for a new job. Before she left, I had her teach me how to use the dishwasher. It's a portable one so you have to hook it up to the sink and stuff. I never had a dishwasher while growing up and I still don't so learning how to run one properly was a new skill for me. When we finished I told her "next up, the coffee pot!"

This morning I mastered the coffee pot. We have a couple of die hard coffee drinkers here. I was kind of nervous jumping in on their territory but I start a half hour before they do and I didn't want to wait this morning. So, I made coffee and when they got here, they said "Two thumbs up"! Yeah me!!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Update: Things To Do Before I Die

In April 2006 I drafted my original list of 96 (and counting) Things To Do Before I Die This came up in conversation again, so I'm giving a status report. These are the things I have accomplished or have sort of accomplished.

2. Live on my own in my own place - so far I've always had a room mate
3. Eat at Sonic - Shoot. You know I've been to Sonic twice but I've only ever gotten a drink. I suppose it mostly qualifies.

7. Go to Texas - DONE!!!

15. Get room service and have breakfast in bed at a nice hotel - I had room service for dinner at the Fairmont. Very nice. I haven't had breakfast in bed yet though.

16. Play blackjack at a casino - I've played slots now...
18. Try ten new foods - fried okra, aligator, crawfish...I need to pay more attention and track what I'm eating.

37. Tour the US Eastern seaboard - I've started this. I want to do a lot more though

41. Learn to cook - ditto. Started, want to do more

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Change is constant but all at once?

Somehow it feels like once I blog something, it becomes official. I can tell people and sign papers and stuff but until I post it here, it's like it hasn't really happened. Anyways. I've tried starting this entry a few times. Here it finally is.

I have news. Big news for me.

I have a new job.

Well, I have ANOTHER job. I'm not quitting my day job. Far from it. But, I did get another job on top. Why?

"They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting to get different results."

I've been slowly going insane for the past year. I have debt. Approximately half of it is from CM, half is just from bad choices. I have been, with the help of some wonderfully supportive friends, working to get it under control but I'm still just managing it. I have finally realized that if I want to get rid of it, I need to increase my cashflow and get serious about eliminating my debt.

I've been batting around the idea of a second job for awhile. Thinking about what I might want to do and what I CAN do, without quitting my day job. I like my day job. I really do. I like what I do and I'm good at it. The thing is, I'm hitting my seven year itch (actually it's more like 8.5 but who's counting?) and I'm getting tired of sitting behind a desk. So, I started thinking about where I could work that would be totally different from what I do 9-5, Monday to Friday.

My first thought was Starbucks. I love it there. It's a great place, a great company, I have friends that work there and I'd love to join that team. The thing is they're open until 11pm most nights and then you have to clean up. Now I'm not stupid. I KNOW I need my sleep and if I worked from say, 8-4:30 and then 5-11 I would NOT be able to function the next day. I want to increase my cashflow but not at the expense of my health and sanity.

So I turned my attention to the mall. Christmas is coming so I figured they'd probably be looking for seasonal staff. That way I can get some hours and get a feel for what working two jobs is like. I logged on to their website and found a few options but in typical Heidi fashion I didn't follow up.

A few days later there was a big quarter page ad in the paper advertising a job fair at the mall. It was great. It gave me a deadline because really. If you're going to drop off a bunch of resumes, why not do it when they're expecting you and willing to look at them!

The job fair was on Thursday. Last minute I found my old resume (not the one I used for this job but one that I could tailor to retail a lot easier) and banged out a cover letter. The cover letter was kind of an after thought but I think it really made a difference. Here's my cover letter.

Thank you for taking the time to review my application. My name is Heidi and I am employed locally, full time from 8 – 4:30 Monday to Friday. I am interested in securing a part time position to supplement my income and expose me to new learning opportunities.

The retail field is new to me although I do have some sales experience through my time with Creative Memories, a direct sales organization. I have extensive experience with customer service both in person and over the phone and enjoy working with the customer to find a mutually acceptable solution. I work well in a team or alone and am a quick learner.

I look forward to meeting with you to discuss your staffing requirements further.

Not bad considering I hardly took any time on it hey?

So, Thursday, armed with about ten resumes and cover letters, I went to the mall. I had reviewed the list of stores that were hiring and I applied at about 1/3 of them. Places I would like to work and could be comfortable in. One of them had me fill out an application form. One had me fill out an availability form and said they'd be calling on Wednesday (which, you'll note is tomorrow).

Friday morning at 9am I got a call. "Can you come in for an interview tomorrow?" (Saturday at 9) Yep! Saturday I had the interview, "Can you start training tomorrow?" Yep! I had my second round of training yesterday (Monday) I'll be on the schedule for next week.

I'm working at Northern Reflections. It's a women's clothing store. They have really nice casual clothing. I am required to purchase and wear the clothing but I won't have that many shifts (at least until the Christmas season starts in earnest) so I can build up without breaking the bank.

So there. That's my big news along with my thought process for why and the story of how it happened. With all the other change that's going on (Seth moving out, Robert moving in, Meredith moving away) adding a new job on top is kind of crazy but it's working. In store retail is totally new for me but so far it hasn't been overwhelming or strange which is good.

It's kind of funny too because when I did my first practicum (at the job that I ended up staying at for 7 years) I was only supposed to be there for 50 hours and then I was going to do 50 hours either in the library or a retail location. So I've always wanted to TRY retail. Now I get that chance! And I can use it to take control of my life.

Yeah me :)

~Heidi

Sunday, October 14, 2007

This is my living room right now.

Note the TWO bodies? We (Mom, Dad and I) were talking to Robert on Friday and realized that there was no point in him hanging around in Vernon since he wasn't working anymore. Dad drove up yesterday and got him so Seth and Robert have one more weekend to spend together. Of course that means that they didn't get home until 11 this morning. I don't want to know.
So it looks like Rob will stay on our couch for the week. When Seth leaves on Sunday Robert will move in to the bedroom.
And that concludes this edition of as my world turns. Stay tuned for another BIG announcement that I don't have time to blog right now.
~Heidi

Friday, October 12, 2007

Alrighty then!

So, if you remember, one of the reasons I moved in with Seth in the first place was because Robert was moving out. Now Seth is moving out and it looks like Robert is ready to come home, which means he needs a room mate and I'm it! Robert gave notice at his job today and will tell his current room mate (who is leaving soon anyways) and he could be down here as soon as next weekend...or sooner. Hopefully not too much sooner though because Seth doesn't actually leave until next Saturday. When stuff happens it happens fast. Here's hoping Robert and I can co-exist as peacefully as Seth and I have.
~Heidi

Vancouver 2010

As you probably know, Vancouver is hosting the Olympics in 2010. I was really too young to really appreciate the '88 Olympics in Calgary (although I did know that the girl mascot was named Hidy which I thought was pretty cool). Anyways, it's been interesting watching 2010 take shape. It's something that's kind of always there in the back of my mind. The news reports on the highlights. I've been signed up as a volunteer since before we were even short listed as a host city and here and there you're starting to see more and more Olympic symbols show up.


I think the neatest thing I've seen so far would have to be this video: Celebrate the Possible I've had the opportunity to see it on full screen projection twice now. Both were at meetings highlighting the opportunities for local businesses to get involved with the games. The video really is stunning. I think my favourite part is when the cranes turn into the figure skaters. (Watch it. You'll understand). This video really makes me proud to be Canadian. Proud of my beautiful country and city. Proud of the sports, arts, heritage and culture that we foster.

I also got to hear Andrea Holmes speak. It was awesome. The enthusiasm she has is infectious. I'll be watching for her in Beijing.

Hopefully I can be a link to my readers for the 2010 games. I know it will be an experience I will never forget and I'm excited for it to come.

~Heidi

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

New Shoes!

Meredith went shopping on Saturday and said these shoes reminded me of her. She took a picture with her cell phone and sent it to me. I agreed that they were super cute so she bought them for me!!! They fit great and I LOVE them! What an awesome friend. Not everyone will buy you shoes!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Thanksgiving Weekend

This weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving. I have a reputation in my family for being a board game freak. Scabble, Monopoly, Risk, cards, you name it, I love it. I will play board games for HOURS. My family generally humours me and while they do enjoy playing, they're not over the top like I am.

Friday evening I was at Meredith's Grandma's for dinner. Her Aunt, Uncle and Cousin were visiting and after dinner we played a round of Settlers of Catan They had originally introduced me to it when we went to Harrison this summer. Since then I played it once with Melissa and Jevon. I mentioned that I wanted to get a copy of the game because I thought my family would enjoy it. Meredith's mom suggested that I borrow it for the weekend.

We had our traditional turkey (and ham this year because Seth wanted it) dinner on Sunday after church. Aaron's friend Nathan (sitting beside me) joined us. After dinner we relaxed, napped, did dishes and around 6pm started playing Settlers. Mom, Dad, Seth, Robert and I were in on the action. (Aaron was with Nathan). We played until 3:30 AM!!! CRAZY! The boys work night shift so for them to stay up late isn't a big deal. Seth did a Tim Horton's run around 10pm so I was good to stay up late. Dad just kept going though. It was amazing. I don't think he's ever stayed up that late. We laughed and ate and laughed some more. It was wonderful. With Seth moving and not having seen Robert since Easter, it's hard to say when we'll ever get to do this again. By around 2 it became a test to see how long Dad would keep going. We'd finish a game and they'd all say "let's play again!"


Around 1:30 they pulled out RISK and we played a round of that (Seth beat us rather effortlessly) and then we played another two rounds of Settlers. Seth won most of the games but Robert, Mom and Dad each had their turns as well. Seth wanted us to call him the "Emporer of Catan". Not likely LOL

It was a great way to spend Thanksgiving though.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Cranberry Festival

Mom and I have been trying to make it to the Fort Langley Cranberry Festival for years. Today, despite the misty moisty morning, we braved the weather and were able to go out and enjoy it. I didn't really take any pictures at the festival site. It was mostly booths selling all manner of items from jewelry to soap to chocolates with LOTS of cranberry themed items. We tried cranberry chutney, cranberry salsa, cranberry fudge, cranberry juice, actually we got a few bottles of cranberry juice and craisins (dried cranberries) from Ocean Spray and a bunch of other cranberry items. They crowned a "Cranberry King" and everything.
From the festival site IN Fort Langley, we went down to The Fort Winery where we tried white and red cranberry wine and a yummy raspberry dessert wine before heading down to the actual cranberry bogs to see how they are harvested. There weren't any guides but I did grill one of the nice workers and he gave me a bit of information.
The top picture shows the cranberries growing on the vines in the bogs. Those ones have actually been harvested already and the ones on the edge are just left. We never did determine if they don't harvest them or if they can't but in either case they are left there.
The second picture shows the bog once it's been filled with water and the cranberries have been loosened. They float to the top and then are raked over and sucked up a huge tube. The generator on the right moves them down the tube to the truck.
These berries are destined to become craisins. We asked what they do with the white cranberries (which are just unripened) and they said that they just dye them with the juice of the red berries!!! It was really neat to go down and see the process up close and personal. It was pretty muddy but it was worth it.