Thursday, August 27, 2015

Mine Again in Memphis

When I left Portland I knew there were some things I was leaving behind for good.

Family, ClassPass and Trader Joe's were at the top of my list. No sales tax, gas station attendants and standing workstations were next. I'd already bid my farewells to straight hair among the humidity and goodbye to rain boots because of all the rumors I heard about scorching summers in the south.

While I don't see my family - or ClassPass and gas attendants - moving to Memphis anytime soon, here's some things that returned to my life in the past 10 days. It's really true; if you love something let it go. If it comes back it was meant to be.

+ A big beautiful if-this-is-a-prank-im-going-postal thing happened last week in the form of a news article suggesting all systems are GO on adding a Trader Joe's to the place I've been planting my Oregonian roots. This article's validity may even influence the area of town I'll invest in for the beginnings of a very-very-far-away future family. I have the customer service phone number - and will share it with you too - so that I can call and express my excitement for this location's consideration.

+ I am the world's worst sit at a desk all day kind of girl. I find myself so thankful for the many daily meetings I have that are standing room only and the fact that I'm so insignificant and don't need a seat at the table. For three weeks now I've been pushing through sore hips, tight shoulders, and an achy back while I ask co-workers how they possibly sit all day. I describe to them this magical world of Portland hippies at Nike World Headquarters who appreciate workplace ergonomics and offer alternate workstations and alignment consultations to any employee that wants it. I found exactly what I was looking for in the most unconventional and anti-social location. The cafeteria. No, I'm not forever hungry if you have to go find me there, I'm just taking care of my muscles.

+ By default I just made some new best buddies last week who love to drink, eat, trash talk my boyfriend and watch football. Considering that I'm singlehandedly the best trash talker and hater of my guy in a public setting, I fit right in. I participated in my very first Fantasy Football draft and didn't adopt any crazy-girly strategy like what player looks best in football pants, but came out with a B+ grading from Yahoo's point of view. That's one level up from the boy's grading of just a "B".

+ I've never seen so much rain in the summer. I thought I wouldn't need any rain boots in my new world, but I've had to wear jackets and sweaters just to keep warm and dry this month. Southern summers, what? No, I didn't bring Portland with me. I don't know that I've ever seen rain in August in Portland. In fact, the entire Northwest is up in flames this month from the wildfires and unusual temperatures.

+ I thought that the words 'nature' and 'outdoors' were gone from my vocabulary, but this past weekend we headed West to a gorgeous lake house in Arkansas and soaked up some water, trees, and sun rays. I learned to ride and operate a jet ski, boarded a pontoon boat in person, laid in this hammock and snuggled on this guy all weekend. We are heading back as soon as possible if you didn't already gather that I loved this weekend and everything about it.

Family? ClassPass? Who's next to join me here in Tennessee?

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Beer in a Bag

Since I don't know if confessions are still a thing, it's been a while since I've had the balls to show up on a Wednesday. I don't want to confess like it's a thing and be the lone and stinky cheese, and I don't want to post a non-confession and be duped by an unprecedented record-setting day of confessions in the blog world. That's why I'm coming to you on a Thursday, and not to confess but to say hello and share more about my new home and life since I've become employed. 

I'm also coming to you on a Thursday because the boy has had a few unfortunate evenings this week buried in his work laptop and I'm sitting close-by for a second set of eyes to look over his work now that I can have an informed opinion on what he's trying to accomplish. 

Speaking of this man, we celebrated our two-years-since-I-met-your-face-iversary last week with beer in a paper bag and a shot for each of us, the same thing we both ordered the night we met in Toronto two years ago. We've both lost a little on our tolerance, but we haven't lost any ground on the way we make each other laugh. I'm all for an easier two years than the last, but won't take any years without this silly, smart and (another s-word) handsome man by my side. 

That night we also celebrated my one month in Memphis and my third day of work in a new role at my former employer. 

Being a temporary employee at a place you used to work full-time is strange. People know your name, you know the ropes and don't need much help to on-board, you can accomplish things immediately and feel confident with mostly anything that hits your desk. It's also strange - yet heartwarming - to get messages from your former co-workers asking "You're back??". 

I immediately have to stop their minds from thinking that my move was a flop and that I've already come running home to sulk and be comfortable. I tell them where I'm at, what I'm doing, that I actually make more money now and that I actually have to be restricted to hours and a time-card and all those crazy things I haven't done for years in the corporate world. Then comes all of the envy and wow-yes and congrats, but I have to remind them that Insurance through COBRA is yucky and I have sales tax now. Plus, I'm not contributing to some of my favorite things like the stock market or my 401k. 

But, at the end of the day I now have a paycheck and can justify my purchases from our Tennessee Tax-Free weekend. Wedges on wedges since I have to wear closed-toe shoes at my new job, and Brian was gifted two new pairs of jeans because he was embarrassing me himself by walking around with holes in the crotch of his favorite pair. 

Oh and that meal prep? We ROCK the kitchen Sunday nights but somehow it just turns into a platter of leftovers every weeknight. We can't form together a proper meal even when I'm writing down on paper what exactly we will be having each night. We pace the kitchen intending to put together a plate, but instead we find ourselves with seven open tupperware containers and sometimes bacon in bed instead. 

I swear we're putting all of this together, just give us time to act like adults. It's hard sometimes. 

Monday, August 3, 2015


I've been drafting a post all about how it's been a little discouraging to apply for any and every job yet only get a real interview to a company that does the equivalent of the Vitamix and Shamwow presentations at Costco. Yes, I interviewed for that and laughed my way through the entire 45 minutes considering that I stressed over my outfit that had to be business professional. If you google "business professional female for interview" that's not exactly what you want to be wearing in Memphis in July, right?

After that I was digging as low as the 'gig' section on Craigslist just to find an extra dollar to spend on produce at Sprouts, but turned away each time I saw something that wasn't meant to be there. I even opened an Etsy shop thinking I could and should be selling my braided bead bracelets. This may eventually become a thing, ladies. 

While I hoped to share a little more time in Funemployment la-la land with Alyssa, I'm here to share that I accepted a job Friday last week and have my first day back at the corporate world today. It's not as scary nor as crazy as you think. I'm jumping into a very familiar world with the company I worked for in Portland, just on the other side of the business from where I used to be. Some things will come quick, others will be brand new ah-ha moments I could have used in the past six years of employment. Gone are the days my guy could count on a hot meal cooked and ready as he walked through the door, goodbye counting the hours for him to get home (since now all I have to do from 8-5 is look across the room to see him!) but hello to some incredible couples teamwork in our meal prep game for the week.

Last night we spent a quick 75 minutes in the kitchen as the greatest meal-prepping team I've ever seen get to work. 

: 8 Smoothie Bags (banana, strawberries, pineapple, spinach - just add milk & protein powder!)
: Italian Seasoned Chicken
: Sausage
: Taco Night Meat
: Bacon
: Sweet Potato Fries
: Zucchini noodles
: Carrot coins
: Freekeh
: Chopped Peppers
: Chopped Onion
: Peach Slices
: Chopped lettuce

What will all of this Tupperware goodness ultimately turn into?

It turns into easier evenings, more time together, healthy food, extra time for the gym, less stress, more love. Thumbs up from me and mine.

Cheers to new beginnings and incredible teamwork!