Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Group Step

I wish I had a picture or a video of my workout yesterday to share.  I'm extremely positive that it would leave you in stiches.

I went to the gym yesterday, I had the best intentions when I walked into that Group Step class.  Little did I know that there are complicated instructions to stepping up and down and around and to the side and behind and kicking and lifting your arms.  Whew.  I was THAT girl in the class who looked like maybe something just hit her in the head and couldn't quite grasp how everyone else was doing the moves SO PERFECTLY!?  Was I in a class of professionals?  I must have been. 

Of course, my eyes were primarily following the girl up front who had to be some sort of dancer doing little extra spins and twirls where it didn't seem quite necessary.  That threw me off my game. 

Step up, down, over, other side, squats!

It was seriously the most out of place experience I've had at the gym to date.

That being said, I can't wait to give it a go again next week. 

I'm going to weight watchers tonight for my first official weigh in.  I missed last week because, hmmm what was it again?  Oh yes, I got offered my dream job and instead of going to a meeting I decided to jump up and down and scream a lot.  Last week was a roller coaster for sure as I indicated in my previous post.  However, that was no excuse for not hitting the gym even once.  So I'm back on gym track.  Luckily, I can say that even with Thanksgiving with the fam in Omaha I didn't go incredibly out of control eating every sweet I saw.  I weighed myself this morning to get a preview of what's to come, and I anticipate a decent loss.  One day at a time, no?

I start my new job on Monday.  The new job comes with new hours - 8-5 I believe, and that means I'm not going to get to go to the same gym classes I have been getting used to.  However, since I'm starting later, that opens up the early morning classes!  This includes: Group Step, Group Power, Group Centergy (haven't tried this one yet), Cardio Drill Express (whatever this one is), and many others.  I'm actually particularly excited about starting to do a Group Ride class which is essentially a spinning class, but all these "Group" classes are some kind of brand where the instructors get their plans from the "Group" people (corporation?). 

This week has also been quite a blur so far.  My last day at my current job is tomorrow.  I'm excited to blow this popscicle stand.  Honestly the work has been less than fulfilling.  Plus the pay has been rather low compared to what I'm used to getting.  Now with my new job, I'm going to be getting insanely awesome benefits and vacation time.  I can't wait to write more about working at (what I hope is) my dream job!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Promiscuous Job Seeker

The title of this blog might be a little bit misleading.  I am only promiscuous in the sense that starting November 28th I will be holding the 4th job I've had since the end of August.  Now-now, don't judge.  If you've read my previous entries about my job search, being dumped by a notoriously evil bank, starting work as a soybean dispatcher (paging Dr. Cliche Iowa Job), and now working at what can only be described as a dream job... well it's been a roller coaster.  Especially this week.  Come along with me, let me tell you the story of how I became an Iowa State University employee.

September 2011:
This Easley was checking out area businesses that are hiring, obviously checking out the ISU website for open positions.  I see a job that sounds like I could be qualified for, I take time to write a very customized cover letter, pull together 8 references from former bosses and colleagues, submit my application, all online.

October 2011:
On the first day starting as a soybean dispatcher, I get a phone call from someone wanting to do a phone interview.  Like right then, on the spot.  No time to prepare!  What do I do?  I DAZZLE her with my skills, while nervously hoping I don't say "um" or "like" more often than sounds natural in a mature woman's voice.

I ace the interview, the woman said she wanted to schedule me to meet with someone face to face for an interview.  I gladly agree to this.  I send her a thank you email with a letter of recommendation from my old boss TK attached.

Weeks pass...



November 11, 2011:  (11/11/11, how perfect?!)
I miss a call while at work from the person that I was going to have a face to face interview with.  The conversation went something like this.

Them: Sorry about not getting around to scheduling that interview we talked about.  You're clearly the best candidate in the world and we are sooooo super duper sorry for making you wait this long.
Me: Oh please, I figured you'd call - it's only natural you'd want to hire me eventually.  I'm sure you're just waiting until a new position opened up that would be even more awesome than the original one I applied for.
Them: That's exactly what happened.  So we really want to have you meet with 4 phD's, 3 secretaries, 3 other members of staff and a partridge in a pear tree.
Me: Of course, that doesn't sound intimidating at all. 
Them: Excellent, see you Monday!

Before the interview, I was really anxious - but eagerly looking for support from friends and family.

Freaking out is an understatement.

The interview started at 1:00, I was there 30 minutes early.

The interview went really well.  I built rapport with everyone - even the phD's who, admitedly, I was super intimidated by because I thought I'd sound like a real dummy compared to the intellectuals.  My favorite discussion was when they brought up my study abroad experience.

phD1: So do you still practice spanish?
Me: Not as much as I would like to, but I really enjoy languages.  In fact I'm learning German using Rosetta Stone.
phD2: No kidding!  What version do you have?  I'm learning Spanish using Rosetta Stone.
Me: I have the older version, but I understand the newer ones have even more interaction using smart phones and other devices.
phD3: You should really be learning Mandarin
(All 3 phD's laugh as if it's impossible to learn)
Me: Well I do know one phrase in Mandarin that means "How are you?"
(In case this ever comes up in an interview it's: 你 好 吗)
phD3: (who at this point I should mention he's from China) That's right.

End Scene

I really think I proved that I show intellectual curiousity by learning other languages, and given that ISU's students are from around the world, I think this really helped.

Oh, did I mention at the end of all the interviews - I met the Dean of the College of Business?  Talk about intimidating.  This man is a legend.  He's set to step down as Dean this summer - but he's done a lot of good for the College of Business, and I know everyone is going to be really sad to see him go.

After the rest of the interviews, I drove to the MU where I sat in the cafeteria exhaustedly writing thank you notes.  11 of them in total.... which you wouldn't think is a whole lot until you realize you're racing the clock to finish writing and get them to the post office before they close so the recipients should receive them the next day.

Bringing back the art of hand written Thank-You Letters.
For the record, I didn't forget to stamp the letter to the Dean.  I was very prepared at the start of this interview that I had already addressed and stamped the other envelopes so I'd have one less thing to do when I needed to send them on the actual day of the interview.  The Dean interview was a surprise so I had to buy a stamp from the post office.  This is the one they slapped on it:

So professional.

After waiting in line at the post office to buy the aforementioned stamp and to drop off my letters, I got back into my car to find a text from a former Bernstein coworker, and a GLA coworker.  Both saying they just got a call regarding ISU calling them for a reference.  Both said they gave glowing recommendations.  I LOVE THEM.  I couldn't be happier that they called to let me know this because it prepared me for what was about to come.


Oh yes, I danced in the car whilst listening to "Sexy and I Know It" which henceforth will be a song of luck and excitement.

Ok, but really, one of my friends said that as part of the glowing recommendation, they relayed that ISU was really impressed by me and leaning towards hiring me.  And that prepared me for the tentative offer I received on Monday.  Tentative - because I needed to pass a background check.

On Tuesday I received an email that required I submit my information to an outsourced background check system.  I was told in advance that it would be 24-48 hours after I submitted that they'd hear back and give me a formal offer.


I don't have anything in my past to really be worried about.  I've got good credit, I didn't lie on my resume, I haven't committed any felonies (unless I'm criminally good looking) but still I was waiting on pins and needles all damn day.  Thursday was the worst.  I had this gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach that something was wrong.  It was really agonizing - especially when it was 48 hours since my submission for my background test.  I kept checking my phone, hoping I missed a call, or an email. 

Finally at 3:00 Thursday, I was offered a formal job at ISU.  And I definitely accepted.

So after work yesterday I went in and signed my letter of intent.  My new boss had some time and decided to give me a quick tour.  Including showing me my very own OFFICE.  I have 4 walls, a window and a DOOR.  All to myself.  Pardon me for not being able to concentrate on anything else after I found out that I was going to have an office. 

Yesterday pretty much ruled. 

Today, I had to quit my contract job.  That's a story I'll tell once I'm actually done working here (next week).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I'm going to do a marathon!  Not a race marathon, but a motivational "keep fit throughout the winter" program that my gym has going on. 

Basically, the premise is - go to a workout class, get "2 miles".  Finish 13 classes and you've finished a marathon.  Finish a marathon, get your name into a chance to win an iPad! 

As if I needed more motivation to want to hit up workout classes!  My goal will be to complete 3 marathons before the promotion is over.  That's 36 classes in 2 months. 

Totally doable. - That's what she said.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Work Temptations

As I promised last week, I wanted to show you a picture of what my crazy all fruit/veggie salad looks like.  Here's what I had on Friday, minus the grapes because Husband ate them the day before.

Garbonzo beans, carrots, cucumber, tomato, hard boiled egg white, apple, olive oil and red wine vinegar. 
I was full!
This is going to be my staple for a while, not only because it's healthy, but it's tasty and very filling.  Plus, my jaw is tired and and some point I'm like, when am I gonna stop eating?  It's really simple to make too.  I like to do it the night before so my lunch is ready to go and it's one less thing I need to think about in the morning. 

I usually bring a banana or two to keep at my desk if I'm getting hungry before lunch, or I'll bring an apple. 

But you know what's the worst?  OFFICE TEMPTATIONS.

Ok, seriously, how does one say no to someone that's bringing around treats that look like this:


This one looks sad that I don't want to eat it!  Just like all turkeys in real life. 
 So, how does one say no to such delicious treats.  A lot of willpower, of course... or if you're weak willed like me, you agree to take one [so as not to insult the maker] and keep it on your desk as a reminder of how you're going to throw it away later, or give it to your coworker. 

THROW IT AWAY!?  The dillema persists.  How do I throw away food?  There are hungry people in Africa.  There are hungry people in IOWA for crying out loud.  And I'm certain that there's someone hungry in a nearby cubicle.  But still the desire to not offend the creative party is there.

What if I keep it as a decoration to celebrate the holiday of thanks that is this month - or this last weekend if you're among my new inlaw! 

Gosh darnit. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tomorrow - It's gonna be the same

Sometimes I go a little crazy and update my blog 2 times in one day.  Some of you should be happy because I had quite the dry spell there for a while. 

I just wanted to share with you what I ate for lunch because it was insane.

1 cucumber
1 apple
1 tomato
a handful of grapes
1/2 cup(ish) of garbanzo beans
3 hard boiled egg whites
almond slices
1/4 cup of quinoa
a little bit of olive oil
red wine vinaigrette


I am full. 

Take that food pyramid.  I got my fruits and veggies all in - in one meal no less!

Oh crap, I still have a bag of carrots to eat in the fridge.  Maybe they'll have to wait until tomorrow.  But I'm eating the same lunch again.

I rule.

Tomorrow, I promise posting a picture of this.

Safari - So Good-i

Yo - Yo - Yo!

So it's not snowy anymore in paradise Iowa.  But I'm sure we're going to get hit with it hard any day now!  I'm a little excited for snow, but mostly I hate it!  I like snow when it's falling from the sky, but when it's on the ground it's gross.  Also, it hides where dogs do their business when owners don't clean up after them.  So I'm fine with the snow all a'melted today.

This weekend we're going to celebrate Thanksgiving with the Husband's side of the fam.  Should be fun because, well - this girl loves turkey!  But of course I've gotta remember that I have my first official weigh in (the one with the results from the week before, starting weigh in is just depressing) on Monday.  So I have that going through my brain. 

I know you're not supposed to do this, but I tend to weigh myself just about every morning.  And I definitely FEEL different and I can say with confidence that my weigh in on Monday should be a successful one.  I know I can get down to my wedding weight, probably before my birthday even.  The problem is I've just gotta keep myself in check.  Weight loss is sexy.  Weird right?  It's even fun to write about.  But maintenance is about the most effing lame, boring thing to write about.  Anyone want to hear the same story on the news daily?  Who cares if the DOW remains stagnant - although in these times that might be a good thing.  But what I'm trying to say is that I know I can get back to my old/new self in a matter of weeks.  But how do I keep motivated once I'm there?
Anyone have any ideas?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

First Snowfall

I woke up this morning to a cold surprise.  It was the first snowfall of the year... and it stuck - so far.  I feel like going outside with my hair dryer and just letting it run.  That'll make a difference, no? 

The bitter cold snow was covering my car.  I had to brush it off this morning.  While wearing ballet flats.  The snow touched my feet.  I got colder.

I get into my office and it's like they've never ever heard of heat.  Honestly, pretty much everyone in my office has a space heater, but we can't have one back where we sit because it will "blow a fuse".  So me and my fellow dispatchers sit in the back of the office.  Freezing.  All damn day.

I wrote this blog a long time ago

I have a post scheduled to be released today.  That's probably the problem with me just spewing my thoughts randomly whilst at work.  That means I can't tell you that this morning I set the alarm to ring 5 times with 10 minute intervals. 

Husband didn't appreciate it.

Also, dispite my trying to quit coffee, I wanted a bit today.  Turns out that the coffee machine at work is leaking or something.  So they slapped a big ol "do not use" sign on it.

Source: My iPhone camera

There must have been a flood.  Notice the styrofoam cup risers!  Something similar but unidentified under the microwave.

Quality: iPhone Camera
Of course, I'm going to consider this divine intervention.  I don't need coffee anyways.  I have my water.  And vodka.  (kidding!)

Monday, November 7, 2011

I'm angry with myself

Ok, I'm going to be blunt this morning.  I'm very VERY angry with myself.  Since the wedding I have gained 15 pounds.  I can't even believe that I'm writing that because I just felt so good about myself back then and I really can't believe a short 4 months after the wedding I let myself go like this.

So I'm confessing to everyone that I need to make a change!  I can't freaking figure myself out and it's so unbelievably frustrating to weigh myself and see such a high number compared to what I'm used to seeing. 

Bottom line is I want to get back to the point where I'm proud of myself for being healthy.  Tonight I'm going to go back to Weight Watchers because I need to make myself accountable on a weekly basis in front of a stranger and to talk to people who understand the struggle it is to maintain a healthy weight. 

The thing that frustrates me the most is that I've been working out very regularly, I haven't let that slip.  The biggest changes I can see in my routine are a) I'm not going to a trainer 3x a week anymore, and b) I don't have an event to train for.  This is one of the motivating factors behind me signing up to run the Soldier Field 10 miler in May.  I need to amp up the cardio and be more careful about the junk I let into my body.

Any you are all the first to know. 


Saturday, November 5, 2011

New Camera Needed Desperately

So you may have noticed a lack of pictures on this blog, eh? Well there is a reason for that. My primary camera as of late has been my iphone. While it provides "decent" pictures, it doesn't substitute for the actual digital camera experience. When I use my flash, for instance, you get "ghost face".

TNev in the foreground with a Pauly D wannabe in the background.

The ghostly white/orange color from the flash... this was in a well lit kitchen.

He's scary no matter what camera I use.
Another thing, with the digital camera I currently own, it can take anywhere from 3-10 seconds to take the picture after you click the, uh what's it called?  The take the picture button?  Ok, I must apologize profusely to Mr. Luker, my photography teacher and former neighbor.  For the record, I took that class because it was awesome developing your own photos!

So I need to know what to get for a new camera.  I don't know how to judge the reviews I read online.  For all I know, those people are only familiar with the old school film and photo developing centers of ye olde. 

Fast picture taking ability
High resolution
Ability to take pictures at night or in dark places like bars
Fits in my pocket
Low cost

Don't wants:
Manual film insertion
Adjustable shutter, aperature, blah.  Too much work for this girl.

Suggestions?  Whatever, I'm getting cheese fries a camera this weekend.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Library Card

Guess who's into saving money again?  This awesome chick?  Obviously! 

Ok, since moving back to Iowa (and not planning for a wedding anymore), the Hubs finances and mine are like insanely on track.  Of course we bought an awesome sectional for our living room and had to pay for a bunch of other things when we moved back but since that initial crunch, I'm pleased to announce that I'm totally loving the cheaper living in Iowa.

Here's a snippet of the list of a billion reasons why Iowa is better that Chicago-land:
-My car insurance decreased from $500ish to 250ish a month!
-Taxes are 6%
-Our apartment has an extra bedroom, bathroom and even an in home washer dryer for $300 cheaper than what we paid in the suburbs of Chicago.

Bad things:
-I don't get to see EK or SB as often :(

Before moving back to Iowa I bought a car (an AWESOME car) and now I have the ability to drive places such as the library where I can rent books instead of buying them.  Imagine that?  I haven't been this smart since I was in 4th grade. 

For the record, I've just finished Tina Fey's Bossypants, and I'm now reading Betty White's If you ask me (and of course you won't).  That's just like $40 in my pocket. 

***whistling all the way to the bar where beers cost $1***

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Food vs. Noms

I just had an entire inner monologue about what the difference between food and noms is. 

For those of you who aren't familiar with the word "noms", noms (I believe) is the LolCat vernacular for food.  Obviously diminishing vocabulary by using the sound one makes when eating something that is delish.  "Om nom nom nom!" 

Whenever I go to a restaurant, I'll typically have "noms", meaning I'll have something delicious that comes with a side of french fries.  Whereas if I eat an apple, it's just "food".  Does this make sense?  I'm just trying to help you out there who haven't quite figured out how awesome noms are, and how fun it is to say.



I suppose you could argue that all noms are food, but all food is (are?) not noms.

I'm really bored at work.