Monday, April 29, 2013

Workin' With Wells

I have good news!  It's a week late, but it's still good :)  I was officially hired on at Wells Fargo Home Mortgage.  After 18 months of contract work, my persistence, and some good timing, they brought me on as a team member.  It was quite a battle, but based on my enormous raise, decent benefits, and new manager, I'm happy!  My transition was rough and not well planned by any means, but after a week and a half, I'm settling in to my routine, my team is getting used to me, and my manager is figuring me out.  Fun fact:  My new manager reminds me of Dave Simonett. Sweeeeeeeet!

My new job is similar to my old one, but much more intense.  I support my own region of Arizona and Utah.  I have underwriters and closers that I work with.  They are a great team and taking well to my organization.  The person before me (who got let go) was a mess in many ways and I'm basically getting my team back on the right track, which feels great for everyone.

Being in the mortgage industry is never what I expected, but right now, it's working out pretty great.  It's stable, and working for Wells Fargo corporate never looks bad on your resume.  Mike and I can still carpool, helping us to save a couple hundred bucks a month extra.

I wanted to put this out there to let everyone know where I landed.  Thanks to everyone who supported me and listened to me whine through the last few months.  For now, I'm calling Wells home!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Friend Files

I just had great prolonged weekend of seeing and spending time with some of my favorite people!

I missed a Happy Hour that I planned on Wednesday for my sorority sisters :(  I randomly got stuffy, coughing, and my sinuses were killing me on Tuesday, and I couldn't drag myself out to a public place after my Nyquil hangover.  It sounds like it was an eventful time!

Thursday, I felt a bit more pulled together, and after work Mike and I walked on the StoneArch Bridge to kill some time before a birthday dinner.  It was a beautiful day and we took our time admiring all the dogs, tree, clouds and water.  Then we headed to Mackenzie Pub.  It's the Scottish pub right next to the Orpheum, and had me reminiscing about my time in Scotland, boy do I miss it there!  We snagged a table until the birthday girl, Missy showed up to down 4 EJ/Sours in about 2 hours!  It was a small group of 5 and was so nice to catch up, chat about work, tell stories, and eat some great bar food.  We had hot dogs with chili and coleslaw, a soft pretzel with beer cheese, and "totchos".  Let me explain...AWESOME!  It's like nachos, but with tater tots!  Crispy, fried, delicious tater tots.  Nom.

Anna, Missy, and me
Friday was a day I'd been waiting for for a while.  Work was pretty dead, making the day go slow, and of course, it was GORGEOUS out.  Mike dropped me off at my friend's sister's house, and 8 of us headed to Target Field for a Twins game on the cheap.  Again, we all had delicious food, my choice: some chicken strips and seasoned fries, finished with a 9$ Goose Island I.P.A.  Fun fact:  There is no section 141 in Target Field.  We also could not find beer-garitas :(  The Twins lost, but the weather was great, we had a super fun group, and we're always good at making memories.  I'm not saying names or telling stories, but the rest of my night was spent in the E.R. with one of my best friends.  She is fine, thank god.  It gives us a good story, and a prodding to remember that time with friends is precious.  I keep reiterating the fact that now is the time to be making memories to tell our kids some day.  Be grateful for all the time we have together!

View from Peter's seats, we snuck down to see & surprise him!
Saturday brought more sunshine, which Mike and I took to get out the patio furniture and the motorcycle.  I shook and sunned our rugs, and broke out my birthday present: my Hoover steam mop.  Our main floor is hardwood, which I sweep on a weekly basis at the least, but as previously stated (in another blog), my Swiffer sucks.  With the rugs out sunning, I steam mopped the floor and it is now super clean!  Nerd.  

That night, Mike endeavored into homemade black bean burgers.  He wasn't happy with the texture, but they tasted delicious.  Plus, they're super cheap and healthy!  After dinner, we drove over to Savage to have some treats and drinks at our friend's parent's house.  We got to meet some of their high school friends and get to know everyone a little bit better.  It was nice to spend some time with another married couple!  

Today was filled with relaxing.  My favorite Sunday event.  Time to wind down and appreciate all of the amazing people in my life.  I LOVE spending time with my friends, and I hope to only see people more often during this hopefully fantastic summer coming up!  Cheers to another great week!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Birthday Girl!

My birthday was on the 8th.  Normally, I'm not too into it.  But for some reason this year, I was really excited.  Not for any specific reason.  I was just excited.

I was most excited about my birthday party I planned the weekend after.  It was far enough ahead of time that a lot of people were planning on coming, and there's nothing I love more than spending time with lots of my friends.  I subconsciously thought to myself things like, "I could never have a surprise birthday party, because I'm such a planner." Honestly, that went through my head.  Poor Mike, I'm so hard to surprise.

Little did we know...BRET (of all people) was going to surprise me.  Little sneak!!    We knew he was coming into town to stay, and we were both really excited to see him.  He was coming down "for work" and was going to come over early in the afternoon before the party.  It was just what we wanted so we could spend some time with him before everyone showed up.

Bret walked in a little after 4:00 and we got to catching up, talking, lahdeedah.  Then someone knocked on the door.   We hadn't ordered food, and I knew there was no way anyone was showing up that early.  We assumed it was a neighbor.  Mike answered the door, and didn't say anything.  He turned around to walk back to the couch....and in walked LEXY!!  My best friend who moved out east in October that I've really been missing.  I posted a status a few days earlier saying "All I want for my birthday is Lexy by my side."  And they had planned to surprise me all along!  I jumped up, crying, and gave her a huge hug.

It had been the plan for over a month, somehow Bret managed to keep his lies tight, and Lexy managed to keep her lips sealed and her Facebook clean of hints.  WOW.  CONGRATS GUYS!  You did it! You surprised the ultimate planner.  I had no idea.  The best part was that it was also a surprise for our other friends who came to the party saying "What are you doing here?!"

It was amazing.  I will never forget it.  I'll never beat it.  Best. Thing. EVER.  

The party was great.  Lots of people thought it was weird I was having my own birthday party.  But it was fantastic to see everyone, have some drinks, play games, and have a blast.  New friends, gossip, story time.  AMAZING.  I love the people in my life.

THANK YOU everyone for coming over.  Can't wait to see a lot of you on Saturday to celebrate my Carmie's birthday :)  Happy Birthday to Carmen today, love you!!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Cleaning House

I just had a weekend full of cleaning, organizing, and feeling like a fantastic housewife.  (Let it be known that I actually have a full time job, but enjoy calling myself a housewife because of my freakish cleaning tendencies and extremely anal organization.)  I love cleaning, find laundry extremely satisfying, and usually drive Mike crazy along the way.  But hey, he doesn't have to do it, and we have a clean life!

So here are my random tips for cleaning:

1.  I use Clorox Wipes for EVERYTHING.  At lease once a day.  You can get a 4 pack at Sam's Club for around $8.  Insane.  I'm on my second 4 pack since we moved in.  (Weirdo.)

2.  CLEAN YOUR VACUUM FILTER.  I always take the vacuum apart and clean the bin/shake the filter.  Today, I took the filter into pieces and shook the crap out of it.  Disgusting.  I had to open the garage door so I didn't choke.  But it's like I have a whole new vacuum, and if you know me at all, you know that's exciting!  It's practically bring the rugs up off the floor it's running so well.  Also, we only have a tiny rabbit and I am always amazed by the amount of pet hair in the vacuum.  Make sure to clean up after pets so you and they can be healthy and happy :)

3.  Clean your bathroom floors on your hands and knees.  My mom has done this forever, and it drove me crazy.  When I moved out, all I wanted was a Swiffer Wet-Jet.  To my dismay, I got a regular Swiffer.  (This was years ago, by the way.)  Needless to say, it sucks.  And mops are just plain gross.  The only way to get your floors actually clean is to get a rag/cleaning wipe (I sometimes even use the Clorox wipes from above) and get on your knees and clean.  Trust me, you will be MUCH happier with the results.  

4.  Open your windows :)  Although it may let a little dirt and dust in, the air smells amazing, it helps to get air flowing throughout your house, and it's just altogether a great feeling.  

5.  Shake your rugs out.  I'm pretty sure everyone in our neighborhood thinks I'm a maid.  Every weekend, I'm out on our front step shaking rugs like a madwoman.  Honestly, I wish we had a clothesline so I could hang them and beat them with a stick.  No joke.  But seriously, vacuuming only does so much, and getting a little fresh air into them will be great.  

6.  Wash your trash can/bin.  They get a lot of nasty buildup on them, have TONS of germs, and are sometimes smelly.  This is another example where I use my Clorox Wipes!

7.  Remember to replace your toilet brush, mops, broom, kitchen scrubbies, etc. more often than you think you should.  Germs, germs, germs.  And I'm not even a germaphobe, but cleaning your floors with a dirty mop, or cleaning your dishes with a dirty rag...what is that accomplishing?  It's like they say to change your toothbrush every three months and no one ever does....change your cleaning products!  Do it!

8.  Clean your appliances.  All of them.  Products want to run in their ideal working conditions (just like people).  Shake your toaster tray, clean your oven, sanitize your dishwasher and clothes washer, clean your garbage disposal, clean out your coffee maker/grinder, wash out your microwave, and on and on and on.  This will help everything to work properly, saving you money and making you and your appliances happier (and help them live longer).

9.  Febreze your closets.  It gets a little extra freshness in there, and it all around good for your carpets and clothes.  I also like to Febreze our guest room and our furniture.  It makes it smell yummy and does a little cleaning in the meantime.  Score!

10.  Let your bed breathe!  Don't make your bed the second you get out every day.  Your bed needs to breathe, and your bedding, too.  If you can let the sun shine on it to help kill some germs, do it!  It makes it feel all that much more fresh.  You don't have to do it every day, if that makes you crazy...but at least leave it unmade for a few hours on the weekend :)

Well that was a nice little lesson (more like a rant).  Try them all, or ignore me and call me crazy.  I hope your life can be a little cleaner, and let me know if you  have any cleaning tips/vices, too!