Sunday, January 30, 2011

Many More Changes

Lately, I have only been offering my services to the restaurant once a week. I usually go in a few hours early on days when we call Bingo and do some work for Rene. The problem I've been having, is that for the last almost year that I've been helping out and doing all this marketing for them, they have not made any very essential changes on their end. They think that if they just get people in, all will be good. We have spent many many hours talking about so many changes that could be made to save money, increase profit, make far better home made food, and get the employees working for her instead of against her. However, not one thing has been done on her part. Can I tell you how discouraging it is to be the only one trying to build someone else's business?

When I come in, she always starts with "Laura, I need more people in here. Can you do more marketing?" My answer is always the same. It doesn't matter how many people I get to come in here, you need to make better quality food and exceptional customer service to keep them here. You are never going to make money if employees are stealing food or money from you. Advertising is not what is going to save your business. It's your reputation that is going to save your business. I can go on and on, but nothing changes. I have been very honest with her about that also. I told her I can only give her as much as she gives to her business.

After many many problems in the restaurant, things finally came to a head this week. One of Rene's best friends, who she trusts immensely, came in to help her with some organizing (organizing that me and four other people have helped her with previously). While she was there she really saw the laziness that goes on there with the owners and employees. It's so evident that the owners are not managers. Rene is passive aggressive and Bob just wants to be everyone's best friend. Neither are running that place. Rene's friend, Marie, really got a good look at what could be and what should be going on there. And after many hours of some hard core honest talking, Marie told Rene that she needs to hire a manager and I should be that manager. Um...great. 

So, somehow I have been suggested for this role. I agreed to it only under certain conditions. That I have power to make changes and she backs those changes. I will absolutely run every thing past her and Bob, but that if we choose to do it, I need back up in them. I don't mind being the hard ass at all. But the only way this business is going to make it through the year, is if they make serious changes. 

They've even been taking advantage of Mario's culinary schooling. Mario has taught the cooks how to make an amazing fresh marinara and also a meat sauce, instead of canned sauce. He also taught them how to cook fish this week. They don't cook a nice fish. The over-cook am unseasoned hockey puck. It was great to see some of the cooks interested in the cooking and learning. One of the cooks even said that he enjoys cooking, but finds it discouraging when no one else there gives a crap. We'll be using Mario more this week. He's been assessing the kitchen and it needs a complete reorganization and cleaning, plus we need to do a full inventory of food. It's going to be one long week, but it has to be done. Bob will probably be the biggest problem with the kitchen. He built that kitchen and thinks it's the only thing running well in that restaurant. 

So, I have a long road ahead of me. I am only going to work part time. My business will still absolutely come first. I really don't want to do this for more than a year. I feel like these changes can all happen in a year. If no changes happen, I really don't see how they can stay open for more than that. Wish me luck! I am very positive, but feel like I have a big fight ahead of me. 

Friday, January 28, 2011

Joining a Book Club

I have been so excited about the book club I joined! The first meeting is this Sunday and I can't wait to meet all these new people! I have been reading the book and really liking it. I almost don't want it to end. I also can't wait to find out what the next book will be. Can you see I'm excited!

Well, until the last week or so. The problem that the club is running into is the amount of people that have signed up for it. I think I was the third person to sign up. A week later, there was hundred people signed up! That's cool. I love that there are so many people interested. However, where and how are we all going to meet? That seems to be the main problem.

I think the club coordinator only expected a few people to sign up. Surely she didn't expect 100 people signing up so fast, but everyone's excited and jumped on it! She initially set up the first meeting for 10 to meet at her house. With so many people on the list still, I offered to maybe set us up at the restaurant, so more people can meet. Maybe we can have 20-30 people meet up instead of just ten. She must have thought it over, because a week later, she found a restaurant to have it at instead. Yay, more people!

The only problem is that a lot of people still really want to meet up. There are tons of messages from the people who didn't make it into the initial meeting wanting to meet up. That's the whole reason we all joined the club. It's getting to meet up and discuss the books we love. It's the whole point right? Well, these people are putting up little messages about meeting up another time. So, I again suggested that I have a spot that has room for quite a bit of people. If they are interested I can set it up. A lot of people really liked the idea.

Except for one person...the club coordinator. She apparently thought that I was trying to take people away from her club. Um, nope. I am willing to set up a place for people to meet, but I won't be there. I am going to the main book meeting with her. So, I sent her another message just letting her know that wasn't my intention at all. I just wanted to make sure the people who still wanted to meet, could. It's the whole point.

I got a private message back from her explaining that she works really hard to coordinate all of this and the money to post the club on the site came out of her pocket (it's $6 a month). So she didn't want the club to split in two because it was her club and she wanted it to be one group. Not everyone could meet but that's how it would have to be. Then she said it was ok for people to meet up but that she didn't want them to be their own group cause it was her group. It felt a little weird. And maybe a little bit "They are all mine! Stay away!" I'm a little confused by the whole thing and a little bummed. If it's about the money, just charge everyone 50 cents and you're whole subscription is covered.

I know that I joined this group to be able to meet people. I lucked out when I signed up. I was able to rsvp for the meeting before most of the other people. But next month when the meeting is set up, I might not sign in on time and there might not be space in the meeting. I would be bummed if a little side group couldn't meet and chat. So, I don't understand why she's having a problem with other little groups meeting up. It is the whole point!

I'm also uncomfortable because she's now deleted all my messages off the message board. I'm not sure where this all went wrong but I'm bummed! I swear I just mentioned that I knew a spot if people wanted a place to meet. They certainly can meet any where they want and most likely will. Maybe I should have just kept quiet. I don't know. I haven't responded to her last message, because I wanted to wait and see if I felt different today. I'll probably just leave it be and let the other people deal with it. I'm sure I'm not the only one she's talking to about this...I hope not at least.

Mario thinks I should just start up my own book club. I don't know. Anyone want to join my little book club?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

I loves a good mystery!

Last night as Mario and I pulled into the garage, Mario reached down into the console for the something and pulled up a hotel key card. We both stared at each other completely dumbfounded.

Mario immediately said, "What the hell is this?"
My response was, "Look if you are going to cheat, you're gonna have to be a little more careful where you leave the evidence babe."
Mario "Where did this even come from."
Me "You should tell your girlfriend to be more careful too then"

But then we really started wondering where this hotel key came from.

Me "The Hampton Inns. We have never stayed at the Hampton Inns".
Mario " Was the timeshare we stayed in San Diego last summer a Hampton Inn?"
Me "Oh, maybe. Well no, the timeshare was Wyndham and we didn't even drive this car down there."
Mario "hmm"
Me " Well, maybe it was your mom. You did run her on some errands last week."
Mario "When was the last time my mom was actually in a hotel room?"
Me "Who knows what she does when we are all working. Maybe she has some sordid sex life?"
Mario stared at me in silence.

As we walked inside I could see Mario was already moving on. "Do you think it was from Aurthur? You two were running around a few weeks ago. Maybe he dropped it"
Mario "No, I would have noticed it. I cleaned out my car last week. No one else has been in my car"
Me "Hmm"

I was a bit obsessed though. I fancy myself a bit of a spy. Ok, not at all, but I totally want to be one when I grow up. I just don't have a damn logical bone in my body. However, this was my chance! I would solve the mystery of the magically appearing hotel key!.

So, I obsessed on this stinking key while I wrote yesterday's bloggy. Which meant that it took much longer to write up than was really necessary. And also meant that it took me 15 paragraphs just to say "yay, we lost weight!" While I typed, it ran around my mind a bit. Did Mario drive someone home from the party at work on Friday? No, he walked. Maybe it's been in the car for months and we didn't notice it? No, Mario is the super car cleaner...a little on the OCD side when it comes to his car. He'd notice.

So, I pulled up a map to see where the closest one was to us. Hmm, close to the airport. Oh! We picked up Katie's parents at the airport. We lent them Mario's car for a week after the baby was born! But they stayed at Katie's house. They weren't even in the area for two hours. Maybe they stayed at a Hampton Inn in Minnesota before then came? Nope.


Mario was obviously way over it and had totally moved on, "oh yeah, that's probably it"
Me "Well, it's good to know we didn't cheat on each other. That was kind of a sloppy move leaving the key card in the car"
Mario "you're weird"

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


We didn't have a scale in our house. Maybe that's part of our problem around here. No scale and the weight is easy to ignore, right? Well, today, we finally finally received the scale we ordered online.

Mario and I have been on our little diet/calorie watch for about three weeks or so. We've been good and bad and we have learned. We have one cheat day a week, but we don't go crazy. Most of all we just try to keep in check. It's so interesting so see how many calories are in the food we eat every day. Mario was amazed to learn that one glass of lingonberry juice at Ikea, that he loves so much, is actually 300 calories. That was a real eye opener. Otherwise, we've really not been too bad. We've made sure we have our shit load of veggie soup and salad in the fridge to munch on when we are hungry. So, far we haven't starved or deprived.

So, anyway, with the arrival on our new scale, we were excited. I had an estimate of what I weighed in my head. I know what I was weighing in at the gym at the beginning of last summer. Although, I am sure I gained some weight since then. Thank you holidays.

Mario wasn't home when the scale arrived, so I tore open the box and hopped on. All of a sudden I heard a  "Hello". I jumped. This scale talks. This scale has a lady voice. I'll be pissed if this bitch makes fun of me. But then apparently she prepared herself for the impending doom of me stepping on and very pleasantly said "I'm ready". Uh, ok. I stepped on and she was quiet. I killed her. Then she told me my magical number. Ten pounds down from the number in my head!!! I've probably lost a little more though because, I know I had gained some weight over the summer. Still! I'll take ten pounds!

Now here's the question. If I didn't actually weigh myself when we started this fun adventure, do I still get credit for the supposed ten pound weight loss? Can I really claim it? It could be more. It could be less(although I highly doubt it. I had totally chubbed up more). I would love to claim more but since I was set on this number, I'm sticking to it. What do ya think?

Mario on the other hand was about 20 pounds less than what I thought he'd be. He swears that when he stepped on the scale she said "Oh - My - God!"...I didn't hear it. I do think he's totally loosing weight though. His face is a bit thinner, his legs are thinner, and his belly is getting jiggly. Yes like Santa. His tummy used to be pretty firm. Most of the time, one would want a firm tummy. However, I read that this is totally normal. When you loose weight, your body starts burning stored fat. But it goes after the intramuscular fat first. That's the fat marbled inside the muscles. That intramuscular fat is like the anchor to the outside fat. So without the anchor, the rest of the fat gets jigglier and wigglier and loosens up. So it's a good thing. Next the body will start burning that outer stored fat. Make sense? I hate to say it but I hope I'm getting jigglier too.

Anyway, the scale came at the perfect time. I think we really needed to see a number and not just feel like we're loosing weight. Now we really have a number to start from. It gave us a nice little boost. And I think I officially just decided that I'm totally claiming the ten pounds! Yes. I have lost ten pounds this month! There I said it!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The Competition in Our House

Sometimes I wonder how Mario and I end up in some conversations. Today we went from loving to weird in one minute flat. 

Me: Honey you are the cutest boy I know
Mario: Thank you babes
Me (looking at the cat): Well he's pretty cute too
Mario (apparently feeling competitive): But I don't throw up on the floor
Me: True, but his ass doesn't rumble the house like yours does
Me: Now I don't know who's cuter

Between those two, they're lucky they're both cute or they'd be out of the house. 

Bob says "You can't be this kind of cute!"

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The googles

In the last two weeks, two of my friends have discovered the google web talk. It's kinda fun and feels a bit like we're actually hanging out. However, it's very quickly become a love/hate thing for me.

The first time we tried it was a few weeks ago. My friend had just had her third baby and was in seclusion because her most of her family was infected with the flu. She was stuck in a hotel with the baby and was loving being able to heal in quiet with new baby Silas. however, she was missing her family. Her mother and father live in Minnesota and were out visiting. Unfortunately, they weren't able to visit with Silas and Katie. They were all bummed. They don't get to visit often and they live for being with the grandbabies. So, Katie thought maybe google web talk might be an option for the grandparents to see the babies more often.

So, we both got on the web chat. It was actually pretty fun. I got to see Silas and his cute little baby butt. She was able to talk hands free and have full control of the baby. I liked it and I thought that her parents would love it! It actually has a more personal feel than just being on the phone. I almost felt like I was hanging out with them...well, with the exception of not being able to hold and kiss on that squishy baby. We figured we'd used this every so often, so I can talk to the boys and visit a little. I think the boys will absolutely love being able to talk to people on the computer. Sounds like a fun little thing to do every once in a while. I think her parents will absolutely love it. They'll get to see the boys playing and talking. I think it will work out well for them.

Then a few days ago, I was online and I kept hearing this dinging sound. I couldn't for the life of me figure out where this noise was coming from. I hadn't heard this noise before and it was making me a little crazy. Finally I figured out it was my chat "ringing" to alert me to an incoming call. I clicked over and there was my friend Tracy staring at me from Arkansas. She saw my google chat saying that I have a camera available and took advantage of it. I haven't seen her for at least four of five months, so this seemed fun. This was a good way to hang out with her without being in the same state!

We started talking and it was nice to see her face, talk to her husband, and see my niece (her dog) pop up and say hi. Because we are both photographers, it was great to be able to work and show each other marketing and photos. It worked really well.

Around the half hour mark is when I noticed I wasn't as in love with the chat as much as I had been. I'll be honest, I was getting a little tired of having to pay full attention to the screen. I have a bit of the A.D.D. So on our normal long phone calls, I sit here, move over there, sometimes I flip through a magazine, sometimes I go outside. Basically, on a regular phone, I can do anything. Being tethered to the computer was a little bit more work than just sitting with my phone.

As our phone call went on, the real problem came to light. The whole point of talking on the computer, is being able to see the other person. So it's kinda imperative to be seen my the camera and that's where the hate part comes in. I found that for the last half of our conversation, three quarters of my attention was spent on making sure I didn't have a double chin! My vanity totally popped up and I spent more time making sure I was in a flattering angle on the screen, than I really should have. This means that I spent more time staring at myself than paying attention to my friend. We ended up talking for like an hour and a half. This is far more time than I should be spending thinking about how cute I look for a friend. What a conceited asshole right?

This also brings up a third problem for me. You never know when some jerk friend of mine is going to pop up and say hi. This means that I need to make sure I'm looking cute all the time! This google chat seems like far more work than it's worth.

Friday, January 21, 2011

My life flashed before my eyes

I drove Colleen on an errand today and she was kind enough to reward me with Chipotle. Yes I am all for food rewards. I only request that you use this knowledge for good.

After our tasty lunch, we walked back to the car. As, we headed for the elevator and down to the garage, Colleen suggested we take the stairs down and just walk through the garage to the car. It's this suggestion that would lead to me almost being killed not once, but twice. Thank you Colleen!

We headed down the steeps stairs safely enough, only to hear the little old lady injure herself mid way down the stairs. After a few pauses, we realized she was ok and headed down through the labyrinth of this underground garage. This should have been our first warning.

We started through the first of the rooms and into the second. We were mid way through the connecting tunnel, giggling and weaving slighting from our happy food coma. When out of no where came a speeding car! Straight at us! Apparently he was very unconcerned with the garage speed limit. Luckily though, he spotted us as he zoomed around the corner! Of course, Colleen and I ran for opposite sides of the tunnel, totally running into each other, and then finally headed for the left side of the road. At least Colleen ended up on the left side of the road. I, of course, did what I did best and waited for sweet death to take me...I froze. I swear I would be the first to die if I were in a horror movie situation. Luckily, there was the tiniest bit of self preservation deep down in me and I finally moved over towards Colleen.

We continued on a little more cautiously, hugging the wall a little closer, and  laughing at our dorkiness. As we stepped into the adjoining room, we looked back at the machine that could have finished us or maybe just bumped us a little. Then just as we cleared the corner of the tunnel, a black mass stepped into me! I screamed "Oh my god!" My life flashed before my eyes and luckily this time I  jumped back a step...and then finally recognized this mass as safe. I grabbed on to this poor guy's arm and held on, to keep me standing upright as much as him. We had scared the shit out of each other! Butts had puckered and we were both grabbing our hearts hoping to keep them in our chests.

I finally let go of the poor guy and we all started laughing. This poor guy was propped up against the wall and wasn't saying a thing! We really didn't know if he was ok yet, except that he was laughing. Colleen had to ask him no less than three times if he was ok. He finally nodded a bit and peeled himself off the wall. Colleen and I finally headed back to our car laughing and with slightly raised heart rate...but we made it alive.

I hope you can learn from our adventure. Especially not to take Colleens little suggestions to take the will pay the price! I just hope that poor kid made it to where ever he was going. I wonder if he'll be mute for the remainder of his life.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Lets discuss a few things...

-First of all I apologize about not checking in...I have no excuse really. It's more of a memory problem. Something happens to blog about, then I get to the computer and completely forget what the hell I was going to write about. However, the minute I get in the shower, a whole long list comes to mind. Exit the shower...gone again. I really need to have a recorder in there. Maybe I should be moving to video blogs. Although, the only way I'd remember is in the shower and you all don't deserve to see that.

- Karma has reared her ugly head. I was lotioning up my legs the other day. I had finished lefty and had moved onto righty, and when I went to get a bit more lotion, I totally squirted a shitload of soap into my hand instead of lotion! It wasn't even the lotiony soap! It was the regular old gel soap! It didn't even look remotely the same. What's worse...I now had to wash my hands and leg again! I had just gotten out of the shower! What a pain in the ass!

- Can we talk about Mario and I dieting? I have been making a huge pot of veggie soup and a huge salad each week to keep in the fridge. It makes for easy options. Easy option always wins out over a more difficult meal for us. So, these have totally been life savers for us. It has also been a real stinker too. The gas problem that I like to call Mario is killing me! He has been such a trooper. He's totally tracking his calories and all that stuff. So I can't complain too much, but seriously come on!

-Can we also talk about Mario and his Wii. More specifically the sports game he plays. Most nights he turns on the game and does the boxing, softball, tennis, bowling and golf for a bit of excersize. Some of these games are more docile, like the bowling, tennis, and golf. On the other hand, the softball, and boxing become full body participation. Most of you will recall how small our apartment is.

Notice how close he is to the television. This is not because he's like a kid and likes to sit way up on the screen. This is because if he steps forward, he's on the screen. If he steps back, he's on the couch. So he kinda swivels around and tries not to destroy the place.

Most of the time, it's not a problem. However, tonight he was at the dollar store. He happened to find some of the accessories to the sports game. The tennis racket, the golf club, and the baseball bat. So, now we've added more length to this game being held in a room that has no more length to give. 

I stayed out of the room while he played baseball. For Mario, this is a full game of swinging and pitching. Full body swinging and full body pitching with the whole wind up thing. At least he's getting a work out. But the rest of the house is getting beat up in the process. I finally came back into the room when he started playing tennis. I figured it was a mellower game. Wrong. Yes, it was more mellow, but he still was beating the shit out of everything. I was sitting behind him working on my computer. Luckily for him he didn't hit me. However, he did hit my computer a few times. He also hit the entertainment unit a number of times. At which point I decided to turn on the video camera on my phone. I apologize for the very poor video quality but I think you get the point.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Back in the Saddle Again!

Can you say exhausted. When I go down the list of things I did today, it really wasn't that long. Sushi lunch with a friend....awesome. Mario's union holiday party at the Gene Autry museum...awesome. Three hours at a restaurant supply store...awesome, totally exhausting and overwhelming.

After a three week hiatus from sushi, Colleen and I hit our favorite sushi place today. We invited a certain blog reader...who rejected us yet again. But after the first few bites, we realized that we were better off eating this particular meal without anyone else. After three weeks there was more moaning and groaning than was probably appropriate from this fantastic sushi. We decided it was probably better to have her come with next week, so she doesn't have to listen to our food orgasms. Really. We should really still be embarrassed. We were a little ridiculous. But if you love sushi like we understand.

Instead of having a good half hour or forty-five minutes to site and have our therapy session afterwards, we had to race back for me to drop Colleen off. Then pick up Rene from the restaurant. Then pick Mario up from at home and drive us to this restaurant supply store. Supplies are fun. However, this place was food and supplies. While Rene got the paper work going, Mario and I took a preliminary look around...and were in awe. Huge bags of apples for $3. Fifty pound bag of potatoes for $10. Then there's the walk in. I showed up in a short sleeve sweater and a dress for this adventure. Mario was in shorts and flip-flops. We paid for this clothing choice in the walk-in. But that bitch was cold! I imagine this is what winter feels like in other parts of the country.  It was an awesome site though. Whole sides of beef hanging in there. Huge bags of cheese, dressings, fresh herbs, veggies. You name it, it was in there. It was so interesting to look through all the stuff. However, it was a huge relief to get out of that fridge and into the regular part of the store. We are so lucky that we brought Mario along. Originally it was only me and Rene going. I knew he'd want to see this place. Turns out there were so many boxes of heavy supplies we were schlepping that we needed him to move this stuff. I'm not sure how we would have done it ourselves. It took us two and a half hours to collect all the food and supplies, collect prices for comparing suppliers, paid and packed up the truck. We were exhausted. The good news is name is on the card. When we have our next BBQ...we's paying a lot less for our meat!

Of course we had to race back to the restaurant, unload the truck, head back to home, and get ready for Mario's Animation Guild Union Party. I was excited about it this year. Last year there was no where near enough food or space. This year we got a party announcement saying the party wasn't until after New Years. Why you ask? Well, I guess they had reserved a hall for the party and made sure to order enough food. However, the hall fell through mid December. By that time there was nothing available to hold us all. They ended up getting the Gene Autry Museum across from the Los Angeles Zoo. I was excited when we heard where it would be held. We drive by the museum all the time but we have never gone in. We had the run of the whole place. There was good food every where. So there was a little eating and mingling. Then we would walk around the museum for a while. Then we'd mingle and snack. Get a drink. Then check out more of the museum. It was a beautiful museum. You walk in one room and it looks small. Next thing you know, you have been through ten more rooms and come out on the other side of the party. The displays were really great. Beautifully done with tons of interesting cowboy stuff. Cowboy music, movies, saddles, guns, bad cowboys, good cowboys, costumes, Los Angeles history, etc. It just goes on and on. Then of course there are some incredible pieces of cowboy life paintings.

Really it was a full day considering I've spent the last week and a half at home on the computer. The food orgasms where exhausting, the supply run was majorly exhausting, and walking around chatting and being cute  ...although it comes natural, is damn exhausting. I'd love love to go back and visit the museum when I have more energy and time. There was so much we didn't see and it turned out to be way cooler than you would think a cowboy museum would be. It was a good day back to real life!

There is a fun dress up area for the kids to play in. They introduce a chinese american family from way back when. They had the first chinese resaurant in Los Angeles or chinatown...don't remember. This was me being chinese american. How you ask? I have a cute chinese hat on, that's how.

Lots of beautiful saddles

More Los Angeles mexican history. 

The mister was pretty excited to see the original costume from Zorro, The Gay Blade.

A really awesome cowboy outfit that was made for Michael Jackson. The shirt was beautiful but the shoes were incredible.

A cool old truck.

This saddle setup is incredible. Just really gorgeous.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The organizing and planning continues

I really have nothing to blog about because I've barely left the house in a week. Sick twice in one month is a bit ridiculous. However, I'm finally feeling more normal and back in the game.

I have taken advantage of the down time and have figured out a business plan for this year. I figured out how many shoots I'll need to be making a my income goals. I have marketing planned out. And most importantly I've figured out a new non schedule for myself. I've figured out how many hours I want to dedicate a week to marketing, shooting, editing, accounting, the restaurant, blogging, etc. Since I'm very to-do list oriented, I'm going to create a weekly hour check off sheet. So say, I have 12 hours a week of marketing, 8 hours for the restaurant, 15 hours of shooting, 3 hours of accounting. I have a list that I created so that I can check off the  hours as I do it. I'm sure it sounds elementary. But since my schedule is different from one week to the next, at least I know I'll have my allotted hours in for each task. Then I can also choose to sit down and do all the marketing for the week in one shot or split it up without worrying that I'm not doing enough. The only problem is,  I now have this list with more hours on it than there are in a week. And it definitely makes me realize how many times I was over working and under working. Hopefully this will be a nice guideline to keep me on track. I always played it by ear before and that was fine, but this year I want more stability with my work.

I've been finally back working on my website. I've spent so much time hemming and hawing about how to do this website. Only to realize I need to just do it. Get a site up and then decide what needs to change later. I'll be very excited when that is finished. And once it is finished, I'll be able to update it way way easier. Hopefully then I'll be able to keep her on track and updated with beautiful photos (if photos of houses can be considered beautiful).

The only other thing we've been doing is more house organizing. It never ends in such a small apartment. There is no place to hide shit here. So, we've definitely been trying to work on better storage. For the most part we've been doing alright. We took down all our Christmas stuff and went through it all. Reorganized it and only got rid of one thing...a mystery wreath with chili peppers on it. I have no idea where it came from and am embarrassed that we actually have had ownership of a Christmas wreath with chili peppers on it.

The living room is mostly in order. The kitchen is almost almost there. We've been trying things out in new spots and pretty much have it figured out. The only thing left our bedroom really. When Christmas rolled around, we needed space for the tree. So, I moved a medium size bookcase from the living room into our bedroom. Then I found the cutest rocking chair in the alley. Well, now that the tree is gone and the bookcase is in the bedroom, the chair looks so cute where the bookcase needs to move back to. So, we are trying to decide where that bookcase can go now. This tells you people how SMALL this place really is. One bookshelf and a chair is causing chaos in our house and in my head! And although the guilt is overwhelming, we are thinking of getting rid of the huge cat apartment thing we have to make room in the bedroom for the bookcase. The cats really aren't using it any more. I do feel guilty though. It's theirs. And I know that as soon as I touch it to move it, they'll be all over it like it was brand new. Then I'll feel guilty again. So, I think I'm going to slowly move it to the living room and then outside and then to the dumpster day by day. I'll probably find those little jerks hanging out on it by the dumpster.

Then the bookcase can go in the corner where the cat thing was, the chair can be all cute in the corner and we can finally be finished with our bedroom... once I go through the closet one more time. I'm sure there's more shit in there to donate. Well, I also want to find a cute little table to put next to the chair and some photos above it.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

It's a New Year!

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I love the new year! I love day one. I love January. I love the clean slate. It's when I clean out my house and my mind. It's when I reevaluate the last year and decide what I really want to change.

Mario and I spent a bit of time yesterday talking about what we had done in the last year and what we wanted for us as individuals and as a couple in the new year. It was good to get on the same page and find out what each other really wanted. It feels so good to work towards a goal together.

Most of all we want to really enjoy the next year. We were very happy in 2010. There were the normal trials and tribulations but it was a great year. I got to see lots of family. I got to spend lots of time with my mom, sister, and my friends. I've reconciled some friendships I thought were finished. I've learned a lot about myself and how I communicate with people. My marriage has grown and so has my love and friendship with my husband. We want the same for 2011. Only better. More time with friends, more time with family. More camping, more BBQs, more picnics, more laughing, more work, more of all the same. But there are a few goals for the new year that will take work.

A few of our goals are carry-overs from 2010. We have been working on them and plan to continue. First was our financial goal. After spending 2009 absolutely broke, one of our goals for 2010 was to get back on track. We really did. We paid down a lot of debts and actually were able to pay a few off. This year our goal is similar. Pay down debts. Although we definitely want to be able to really throw some money into our savings account. Our combined student loans really seem to be the biggest obstacle there. We'll make it work.

The next goal on our list was getting my business back to where it was before the economy hit. My long term clients have really started calling more consistently in the last few months. So, I feel this is the time to really make it work. I really want to sit down in the next few days and lay out dates and goals. I want to be able to check in and see where I am through out the year. It's hard to believe but I've never done that for my business before. I haven't needed to really. But I realize now I really should have been doing this every year. Next on the list is revamping my website (I at least have this started). Then marketing, marketing, marketing. It really needs to happen this year or I think I need to move on.

The next important goal is the total cliche goal. Loosing weight. I've been way too fat, for way too long. With babies on the mind, I know I need to loose weight not only to get pregnant but just to be able to keep up with  them. Mario is totally on board and wants the same for himself. There will definitely be a learning curve for us. There are a lot of bad habits to change. Luckily we love trying new good foods and things. We've been heading in the right direction with the veggies being delivered and lots of cooking at home. They are amazing and we've had the bestest meals with those veggies. Who would have known I love kale and Chard so much...not I! We just gotta keep heading in that direction. Don't worry I won't turn this blog into a weight loss blog. Although, I might see what kinds of clubs they have on or I might start up a small club of people who want to loose weight. I definitely need that session to own up to what I'm doing and not doing. I just don't have the money to put out to weight watchers or any of those fancy companies. A nice support group would be great.

I'm really looking forward to this year. As usual, the positive asshole in me comes right on out and I write blogs that feel like I'm blowing sunshine up your butt. My apologies. I just can't help it. I love this time of year!