Tuesday, April 22, 2014

California (4/17-4/21)

I recently went to visit Stacia in California. I already miss the sounds and smell of the ocean. Oh, and Stacia too. If I hadn't been so lazy, I would have walked the beach and took pictures of the houses. The houses were amazing. I just can't imagine waking up every morning and the ocean being right outside your window. We didn't do anything real touristy.  But, it was still cool to see the names of places when you were driving on the infamous 405. I saw signs for Calabasas (Kardashians), Wilshire Blvd. (Pretty Woman), Sunset Blvd. (Pretty Woman and any movie you can think of), Olympic (Clueless), and Mulholland Drive (supposedly where some of the most famous celebrities live. We drove through Malibu and I waved at Brody Jenner. HA!
First night in California.

We went straight to dinner after I got off the plane. We ate at this great Mexican place called Yolanda's.
This just happened to be the view from our table.

Yolanda's.

Yolanda's.

After dinner, we went and laid at the pool.

On Friday, we took the train to Santa Barbara.

 We ate more Mexican here at Bay Roadhouse.

 Bay Roadhouse

 I had to go to Pinkberry. It was even better than I expected.
I got chocolate chip cookie yogurt.

 This was the view walking through Santa Barbara.
The picture does it no justice.

 Riding the train.

Believe it or not, there is NOT someone in that costume.

Palm trees in Santa Barbara.

 Saturday night, we got a hotel in Ventura that was RIGHT on the ocean.
It was pretty amazing to sleep with the balcony door open and listen to the water.
We were heading to dinner in this picture.

I thought this place looked cool and then realized it was where we were eating.  
It was called Lure Fish House.  I had swordfish!

We spent two days at the beach. It was only in the 60's, but the sun is very warm there so it was perfect beach weather. Although the Pacific water was ice cold I had to stick my feet in.

You can take all the pictures in the world of the ocean, but they just don't do it justice.

Perfect morning waking up at the hotel. Tons of suffers out that morning. Definitely one of my fav pictures.




You can't go to the beach and not take a picture of your feet in the sand.

The last day I was there, we went to the Harbor and stopped at a few shops to get souvenirs. 
There were tons of boats. 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Life

The last two and a half weeks have been mentally exhausting for me.

I started working for my current employer in December 2010.  But, before that, I worked for a large company here in Fort Wayne. I got that job through a temp agency. I only worked there for a month, but I really liked it. The girls were nice and the job wasn't too shabby.

The end of February, I got an email from one of the girls that still works at this company telling me that a position was opening up and asked if I would want to apply. I had not been looking for a job despite not having insurance with my current employer.  I was really flattered when I got that email.  So, I sent in my resume and waited. It was a good two weeks before I heard anything.  The office manager called me and we scheduled a lunch meeting.  The week after that, I went in and met with the Vice President. That same day, I got the job. It was a package deal - more money, health insurance, 401K, and bonuses.

The following day I put in my two week notice.

Last week, my current boss kept asking me to stay. He had ideas for increasing both of our incomes and offered me more money. It was not the money though. It was the insurance and added benefits. I stuck to my guns and told him no, I had to go. It wasn't easy either because I really like my boss and he's been great to me. Also, I've been a paralegal for 13 years and was about to step out of that roll and into something new. That was scary for me too.  Last week we interviewed four people and had a fifth on Monday.

Late Monday morning, I get an email from my boss with bullet points that laid out an increase in salary, a "stay here" bonus, more vacation, and ideas on how we were going to increase both of our incomes.  I texted my dad immediately and then called him. Here's what my dad said when he answered the phone:

Dad: "Hi."
Me: "Hello."
Dad: "Well you can put that cardboard box back."
Me: "What?!"
Dad: "You can put that cardboard box back that you were going to use to pack your shit up in because you're staying with [insert boss's name]."

After I got off the phone with my dad, I called my mom. My mom was literally cracking up laughing because she couldn't believe it. Having talked with both my parents, I had made my decision.

We had an interview that morning and it was only about 25 mins until the woman was supposed to show up. I took her resume into my boss's office...

Me: "Do you want to call this woman and tell her you're no longer looking for an assistant?"
Boss: look of confusion.... "Why do I not need an assistant anymore?"
Me: Silence
Boss: He finally looks up at me and says, "does that mean you're staying?"
Me: "Yes."

He gave me the biggest hug ever.  Later that afternoon, I called the office manager at the company and told her what had happened and apologized profusely.  She was very understanding and said she knew I had to do what was best for me.

What changed, is that he put his offer into an email. It wasn't just "talk." It's been two days since I decided to stay and I'm happy with my decision.  No regrets -- thank goodness. It was by far the hardest decision I think I've ever had to make; at least professionally.

It's amazing what a raise can do and knowing you're appreciated.  I feel like I'm walking around with a little extra pep in my step.