29 May 2014

A Shelf Fell Down

One of my only complaints about this house is that the shelving in closets are weak.  Each of the them have fallen now.  This last one was in Monica's Closet.  I ignored it for a few weeks because I knew it would be a much bigger job than I wanted to undertake. The shelf conveniently rested on stacks of totes so there was no emergency.

We had our annual birthday gathering for Kevin and the littles this past weekend so I knew I had to work on it, want to or not.  I had sorted and stacked what was on the actual shelf and left it outside the closet door, which the OCD hated but I told it to pipe down.  It did make me give a bunch of stuff to the eldest Niece, who was THRILLED to have it.  Some of it is still in the back of the 4Runner, waiting to go to Goodwill. 

The closet is the one space that I allow to be a bit messy yet it is quite organized. (my definition of messy, Kevin says) On the left are four totes of Christmas decorations and two faux Christmas trees.  Half of these are the in-laws so put down your plans for an intervention.

The center stack is stuff I use intermittently like a tote of gift bags and ribbons, a tall tote of wrapping paper, a tote of picture frames and pictures, and the bedding for the racecar trailer. This stack often gets random stuff piled on top of it; ignored filing, empty boxes, toys for the kids, etc.

Next row is decorations left over from when I worked at the school.  I used to decorate the office (and my house, actually) for each holiday.  I've pared this down quite a bit but it still exists.
This leaves the final row.  This row of totes are keepsakes.  Books, toys, and stuffies from my childhood, stuff from Kevin's childhood, and just random and I mean RANDOM keepsakes. Greeting cards, stickers, funny cartoons, correspondence, stuff you would probably find in any high school locker.

My intention is to someday put these items into scrapbook albums.  But someday keeps getting further away.  Some of it has lost it's meaning so I'm all "Why did I keep this" and some of it is stuff I can look up on the interwebs or scan into the laptop and be done with it.  I like how some "problems" are solved just by the passage of time.

The biggest challenge is greeting cards. If I could figure out how to remove signatures from greeting cards, I would have an entire Hallmark store inventory.  I just feel badly about tossing them into the trash.  I've kept a small collection of milestones but over time, all of the cards from all of the things have been thrown together.

Maybe I'm over-thinking this (don't say Hoarder) but I have difficulty choosing which cards to keep because people die and then seeing that signature is comforting.  But that doesn't mean keep them forever because people might die.  So, we're back to the milestones only.

Kevin thinks keeping our childhood stuff is a little silly at this point because we don't have kids.  We have grand nephews and nieces but I think they have very little interest in old stuffies and Hot Wheels. Some of the toys have value on the ebay but who wants to deal with that? Clearly not me.

So, in three totes in a far corner of a closet, sit memories of our existence.  Kevin said "Or you can leave them and the Nephew and Niece will have to deal with them." Nice, Kevin, you and your black heart.

For now, it's all reassembled and a little less crowded.  Some day I'll decide about those greeting cards and buy scrapbooks.  Someday.  But we all know that when I buy those scrapbooks, they're just going to sit in Monica's closet until the shelf falls down again.

25 May 2014

I Won Survivor

I really wanted to title this "Oh for Eff Sake" but I decided not to.  For once, I'm choosing to be a grown-up. This One Time!  The other option is The Cheese Stands Alone, which will make sense in a few paragraphs.

My work has been absolutely crazy cakes. (thank you, Swistle, for that word)   In October, we merged with another agency.  One that happened to be bigger than ours but had management issues.  We crammed four additional people into our offices and endured copious amounts of drama.

Momentarily, the dust settled.   And then.

The case manager decided that this merger somehow translated into "I don't have to do my job anymore" and she was eventually invited to work elsewhere.  Okay, now that leaves me as the person that has been employed by my agency the longest.  Okay.

Then, after a series of meetings and emails, the executive director was invited to leave.  Well, was going to be invited but she decided to leave ahead of said invitation.

I am now the only person who worked for the original agency.  I have won Survivor.  The Cheese Stands Alone. 

All of these changes brought a new co-worker who wasn't so new because she just came over from one building (same agency) to another.  Then it also brought an interim executive director who was  the board president just prior to my starting there. Then because this isn't confusing enough, it also brought an interim board president because the current board president had recent surgery and is taking leave.

Now you see why I wanted to title this "Oh For Eff Sakes"

So, if you're doing the math, we've added two more folks into our building which was already super overcrowded.

In the mix of all this, I moved my office.  Instead of being on the main floor, I moved downstairs.  It's very quiet and out of the way and I actually enjoy it.  I can open the windows, I can turn the music up, I can surf the internet freely. (joking, not joking) I can talk to myself and make noise without worrying about disturbing my co-worker. 

My office is also the bookkeeper's office BUT she is supposed to work in the afternoon while I'm not there. (there are two workstations)  Well, she has been appearing early and she is NOT AMUSED.  Not about the changes, not about me being in the office. NOT AMUSED.  (fast forward: she ended up quitting so there's that)

Example #2 of wanting that title for this post.

In about one month, I will most likely be moving offices again.  I KNOW.  Part of the reason is that my office is so detached and part of the reason is convoluted and complicated and would require charts, graphs, and a laser pointer.  Mostly is because my job title and duties have changed again.

My current office is a remodeled storage room and has piping for the sprinkler system.  It's kind of steam-punk but it's nice though. The walls are yellow and there are windows that let the natural light in without being glaring. We've decorated it nicely so the pipes just become part of the ambiance.

It was the office of the former executive director.  She left said office about two months ago, not because of her impending invitation to leave but because she decided that she didn't want to work down there anymore.

Instead of having a meeting and requesting for us to restructure our offices (again) she created a reason: it had mold and was making her sick.  It wasn't and there wasn't.  A) it was a brand new space and 2) we had multiple tests that told us that it didn't.  Yes, she imagined mold and illness.  But wait, there's more.  She squatted in everyone ELSES office until the social worker left us and then she immediately took that office hostage.

Now you see why she no longer works here and the optional title of this post.

In a few weeks this will most likely be all different again.  It's a good thing I pack light and that I enjoy my coworkers. 

Outwit, outlast, outplay: the reality reality show.

20 May 2014

I Can't Choose Soda

So, my next post will explain where in the world of Carmen San Diego I have been.  Let me tell you that everything is okay but my work. OHMYGAH my work.

This scenario sums up everything perfectly:

Kevin worked up here today so we met for lunch. We went to the ever so glamorous Taco Time (which I realize might mean nothing to some of you. Think, um, Chipotle)

I arrived first (I know! That never happens!) so I ordered our lunches.  Then I stood at the soda machine and waited for some high school aged girls to fill their sodas.  Standing there, I was annoyed. Not at the high school girls, although really one of them was dressed like a stripper and the other was dressed like Avril Lavigne so it made me wonder if I missed Halloween.

Finally, they finished and walked away.  I found myself just staring at the soda machine.  It is one of those machines with a touch-screen and approximately eleventy hundred options.  My brain was so full and busy that I just chose what remained on the screen after the last girl chose her drink.

I can't even choose my own doggone soda, my brain is so full.

Kevin looked at my drink a while later and asked "What in the Sam Hell is that?" (isn't he cute?)

"I know. I know. It's sad and pathetic actually."  

"What are you talking about?"

"I couldn't even consider what kind of soda I wanted so I just chose what the girl ahead of me chose."

"That *is* sad and pathetic."

My current life, as defined by a soda choice.

07 May 2014

Worry Just Enough

Work has been rough lately.  Seriously stressful (and I feel like that word is way overused so if I'M using it, some sh*t has gone down)

I often make the joke "I need to start drinking again" while at work.  It is intended as a joke but man, lately, I've felt like I'm not joking. At all.

And this, dearies, is why I don't drink. 

While I'm not an alcoholic and I don't feel like I've been in the neighborhood even, I keep a very close eye on it.  Having been raised by alcoholics and have grandparents who were also alcoholics, why would I even try to trigger whichever gene it resides in?

I've been "sober" I put that in quotes because it feels like me using that phrase diminishes someone elses struggle & I don't like that nor intend it.  Let's try again: I haven't drank in probably more than three years.  The last time I had double shot of Jack Daniels while we were in Vegas. It didn't do much for me and I felt like it was a waste of time, This Time.  However, the time before that I did get stupid drunk and I'm not even sure how it happened. (New Years Eve and I wasn't pouring but that's no reason)

The fact that the joke "I should start" has recently held some want to it is a bad sign.  If I think about it, I can picture it, I can taste it and I can want it.  So I try to avoid that.  I redirect myself, I acknowledge that it is a scary little street to travel down, and/or I go get an iced mocha which is a much "better" choice.

Kevin thinks I may over-worry about this.  He also tells me that I will know when I would be drinking too much because "You would come home to all your sh*t in the yard." But I think I worry just enough.  Just enough to keep me from buying a travel size bottle of Jack and relieving tension in not the best way. 

See? I readily came to that example above. That shows me that drinking is not a good idea for me.