Tuesday, March 18, 2014

What's been goin on

I know it's horrible but I just haven't been able to keep up with my blog as much as I'd like to. Second child syndrome? Totally. Poor Jack doesn't get 15 blogs a month about what he is doing these days, like Alana did. But hey, I am trying!!
The last month has been filled with fun stuff, keeping busy, getting out in the sun on these beautiful winter days! It's not even Spring yet and we have been up in the 80's. It's madness! But we are soaking up the sun! This last weekend we bought a yearly family pass to the Aquarium of the Pacific. I am excited to spend our time off during the summer! There is a lot of fun things for Alana to learn about there!

A visit to Aquarium of the Pacific
Feeding the birds
Jack's bath time!

Just kickin it - such a handsome boy

Helping mommy unload the dishwasher

Alana and mommy craft time! She made these for the family and
we bought little candies to act as pots of gold to put inside them.

Believe it or not, the sun was hot enough for a pool day! Too bad the pool was FREEZING!
We will see how Jack does this summer. He was not at all interested in the pool.
He seriously is beautiful. I could look at this picture for hours.

My handsome little guy

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Stash Bash

My little man turned 1 years old! Where has the time gone? It's been a great year and I love the hell out of my little guy. He loves some snugglin time with mommy. He calls out mommy when he is sad or scared. He loves to give kisses. He loves to snuggle with dad under the covers in the morning. Jack has such a love for Alana it's amazing to see. He will just walk into a room and hug her. And of course Alana eats it all up. She loves her baby brother! 

The week leading up to his birthday party he was teething like crazy. Even maybe sick, it's hard to tell the difference with this guy. Runny nose, fever, just not feeling well. I really debated even having a party for him because he was just walking around the house crying, sad and I didn't want to just shove him into a party while feeling so horrible. The party was at the park right by our house so I just figured he would be fine and everyone else could play anyway in case he wasn't. 

My decor for the party came together at last minute. As always with me these days. But it came out great and I loved all the pictures of him with his stash! 

How many times do you think I had to explain this one? One too many.

Grandma provided this awesome pinata full of yummy mexican candy! My favorite. 

 Almost every single person that I invited to the party came. It was a full park with tons of friends and family. The kids had such a fun time! Meanwhile, Jack was in someone's arms either crying or trying to sleep. 

 Jack did ok with opening presents, but we are always so lucky to have such a willing little Alana to help out! Presents are her favorite part! Jack got lots of nice gifts and I am so very grateful for everyone and how generous everyone is!

Family picture! Happy Birthday little buddy. I am sorry you didn't feel well!

 It was finally SMASH CAKE TIME!! This poor little guy hadn't eaten much in the entire week leading up to his birthday party, so I didn't think he would want to really eat the cake either. Boy was I WRONG.

I had to get this picture because we took one with Alana the same way! Mom and dad lovin!! 

I got Alana with some cake as well. Made her giggle. Love my girl.

Jack really got into the cake and just keep eating away. I thought for sure he was going to get sick from all the sugar. He just kept eating.

And eating, and smashing between his hands and then sticking it in his mouth!

His non-smash cake that we got to eat. Designed by me!

Time to beat this bad boy up! He did take a few whacks, but all the kids that came really kicked it's butt and made all of the candy come out!

One of the only pictures of Jack smiling from the entire day, heck, that entire week. But Grandma does that to him. He is such a Grandma's boy! 

I love this picture of him and Aunt Jacquie! Her smile makes this picture!

This pretty much sums up the day! Poor little birthday guy pretty much was grumpy and not feeling well the entire party. Grandpa thought it was a good idea to make the same face. Cracks me up!

The weather was perfect for a January day, everyone we loved was there, it was a perfect day, even if this little man of mine wasn't feeling so well. Happy Birthday to our little buddy! Our first year with you has been trying! You are not as easy as your big sister was, but I love you for being so different! You are full of joy but are so SERIOUS most of the time! Alana can make you laugh like no other. You have a smile when you see me after a long day that just melts my heart. Love you my little man!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Change is good!

That's right, I said it, change is good! Embrace it. Take those lemons and squeeze them all over your wounds! It’s gonna hurt a little but suck it up and move on!

Leaving EPL was a hard decision for me. I was safe there, could have worked there for another 10 years. My boss loved me, thought I could do no wrong, let me have time off when I needed to, let me work from home some days just because. It was an easy job just because I was good at it. The amount of love I got when I left was the best part. People in HR telling me if I ever wanted to come back to just call, my boss tell me that my desk is empty if I want to come back. The people were awesome (well most of them), I’ve made some lifelong friends there! Leaving there was scary, but I had to take the leap! I took a position over at M’s that looked to be full of excitement! They were going to be on the upswing soon, and I was going to help be part of it! It was a great opportunity for me to get out of IT and try something different to “be in the mix” of things.

Less than 60 days on the new job at M’s and I find out they are closing our office in Irvine. Fuck me. I just left this great job and a great company to just be booted out like yesterday’s trash. This news could not have come at a worse time. With only a few weeks before Christmas we had a big company meeting. The week leading up to this meeting was the most stressful of all! People think they know what’s happening, everyone has their own versions of what they have heard from so and so. Stress took me over, was I being let go right after the meeting? I’ve not been here long enough to get any kind of package. I couldn’t sleep, I ate WAY too much. I couldn’t stop talking about what might be going on. My nights were filled with thoughts of having to break our lease and give up our house, sale my car, put my children in one bedroom…. All the craziness goes through my head. I could only think of worse case. Nothing would really be wrong with any of the scenarios above, but I just didn’t want to pick up and change everything because of a bad choice I made.

The morning of the meeting I am so sick to my stomach and in tears so many times. This was it, I was going to be unemployed in an hour from now, tossed out of the building, badge taken and sent on my way….

My boss somewhat helped me to feel better and tells me that it was not happening today and I would be one of the last people to leave. But what did that mean? Meeting time happens, we find out they are closing our office in Irvine. I have a job for 3 more months. Some people only had two months, but some of us had 3. My first thought; I can find a job in 3 months! Easy Peasy! BIG relief off of my shoulders. Kinda. The rest of the day was filled with drinking, and LOTS of it. I am pretty sure I consumed at least an entire bottle of top shelf vodka myself! The company was paying and I was drinking! HA.

Hubby picked me up, got home, shed lots of tears, went to bed. Got up the next day, put on my big girl panties, came into work and started the process to find a new job! I had my night of tears, my week of stress, I was ready to hit the ground running! My resume was the easy part, after all, I had just gotten this new job a few months ago, so I just had to throw on my new role and be done! Some people that had been here for longer than I took it more personal and had and is having a much harder time! I can understand and I feel bad for some of the people that have been a M’s for 20 something years. It was easier for me to be positive about it because I think I am a pretty positive person in general, but I had only been here for such a short time! The decision was already made and I knew I could do nothing about it, so just get your crap together and start putting yourself out there!

My new found love is LinkedIn! My cousin who is a recruiter had told me how powerful it was months ago, but I didn’t get it until now. Of course my job search started with Google. But as I would find a job posted I went to LinkedIn to see who I knew that worked at that company. I have heard it OVER and OVER in the last few years, and boy it’s SO true; You have to know someone to get your foot in the door to any company these days. LinkedIn has been key to my job search. Before I knew it I had 4 phone interviews lined up in one week! All with the help of different people I knew that had worked at one of those companies. All because of LinkedIn! Most people don’t mind passing your resume onto someone they know. If you don’t ask, you will never find out!

One of the things my boss told me when we found out the news about losing our jobs was, if I needed time to take calls or interview, please take it! He said he would give me a great reference, after all, he felt super bad about just hiring me and then having to turn around and let me go. This worked to my advantage. My first phone interview was with *bucks. In checking out their website, they had an entire webpage with tips on your resume and how to prepare for an interview with them. It was in fact a really great way to brush up on my interviewing skills! All four of my phone interview went really well! They all promised 2nd interviews. I was hitting the ground running for sure. It was a great feeling. I had some great experience and people wanted to talk to me. It had been less than 3 weeks since dooms day and I was kicking butt!
The next week followed with 2nd interviews and even a third. Then a job offer!!! I don’t even understand how things can move so fast sometimes, but the next thing I knew I was putting my notice into M’s! You can’t fire me, I quit!

Blowing this Popsicle stand for the Bell! They are such an awesome and LARGE company! Very hip, full of young people, energy, and they do a LOT of fun things, it’s like it was made for me! I will be supporting 3 Directors on the Restaurant Excellence team. I start there in February and am really excited for things to come! Lots of great opportunities to show my skills and a lot of chances to move around within a great company! They are really focused on personal and professional development. That’s really important to me these days. The perks I will get for working for the Bell are pretty awesome! They really thought long and hard about what will attract the best people! Between daycare on campus, a gym, a salon and restaurants, they had me at hello.

In talking to my current President at M’s this morning he told me that their CEO is one of the best out there! I really respect our President and have no hard feelings towards him for the decisions that have been made here. I don’t take it personally and I’m not one to burn bridges. It makes me sad to have no choice to leave a company where I really enjoy. I enjoy the management and our President. He is that guy that walks around and knows your name and says good morning. He is that guy that tells me that I will do great things and will be such a great asset to the Bell. It was great to hear. I am going to miss the people I have bonded with in the last four months. Sad to go, but so excited for the opportunity I have been presented! More updates on the new awesome job once I start! More to come on the awesome weight loss journey that is on it’s way. It has been shown in my past, if I am happy at my job, it reflects in my attitude, my home life and my life in general! Here’s to a new change and a new start for 2014!