I live!!!!

Feb. 24th, 2015 06:36 pm
sailorzeo: (huh?)
Wow, haven't posted here in over 2 years.  I just...haven't felt the need.  I kind of wandered over to Tumblr and just fell in.

So, a quick update: lost my job in July.  Haven't found a new one yet, but I have an Etsy shop, Zeo's Soaps and Sundries, where I sell handmade soaps, lip balms, bath salts, and soon, cuticle oil.  I'm also running a GoFundMe campaign, trying to get a little extra money to help bridge the gap on weeks where sales are slow.
This has been dubbed "Soaphenge."  All of those soaps have since sold.

This week is full of soapmaking.  I have 13 more 2-pound batches I want to make, and I keep running out of ingredients.  Today, I ran out of lye, which is somewhat essential to making soap.  I have enough mango butter for one more, maybe two more batches.  I have some money coming in, so I'll be able to restock those ingredients, but dang, it's a fine balancing act I'm walking.  Once I get those soaps made and listed, I can breathe a little.

So, that's what I've been up to of late.  Anyone miss me?
sailorzeo: (Default)
I'm still using LoseIt.  I actually earned a badge on the site for logging every day for two weeks.  Plus, I'm down 10 pounds from when I started.  I haven't been keeping up the WiiFit; in fact, I think I've only used it three times.  Timing seems to be the main issue.  I'm out of the house ten to eleven hours a day, Monday through Friday.  When I get home in the evening, I make dinner (most nights), which takes another hour, then eating and cleaning up, and all I want to do is escape into a galaxy far far away for a few hours, or go through my social media links, catch up on the DVR, or collapse in bed and read for a few hours before falling asleep.  I stand a lot at work, so my legs and feet are tired when I get home.  That makes wanting to go work out, using primarily my legs, not a very attractive option.

I got new work shoes, though.  After getting and loving my Crocs sandals, I got a pair of Crocs Work shoes, the Mercy Work.  As a bonus, the Crocs outlet had a buy-one-get-one-half-off sale, so I also got another pair of the sandals.  The first pair was white with blue insoles; the new pair is navy with violet insoles.  Now I just need the black/black and the brown/brown to complete the set.  Anyway, I'm hoping the new, comfy work shoes will help my legs feel less-tired at the end of the day, so I can get a little more motivated to exercise when I get home.  Exercising in the morning is not an option; I already have a hard time getting up and out the door by seven getting up at 5:30 with my current routine.  Adding half an hour-ish of exercise plus a shower would mean getting up at 4 to get the same amount accomplished.  Plus, I hate showering before work.  I prefer to shower before bed.

Still, though, I've kept with it longer than I thought I would, and I'm actually sort of seeing results.  Another 17 pounds, and I'll be down 10% of my starting weight.  Doctors always told me that losing just 10% of the weight would mean drastic positive changes to my health.  We'll see; I think 10% increments will be good for little goals.  I like having goals and rewards--badges, stamps, gold stars, it doesn't take much, just a tangible, visible reminder of "you done good."
sailorzeo: (Default)
This morning, I was woken up by an honest-to-goodness nightmare. I don't know exactly when it happened, but it was before the alarm went off, and it felt like I tossed and turned for a lot after it, trying to shake it off, and never did manage to fall back asleep.

It wasn't the old zombie nightmares, or anything worthy of a horror movie. No, this was something a lot more personal and a lot closer to home.

In the nightmare, I'd agreed to work the retail section of the print shop for a day, to help out. In the agreement, I wasn't supposed to work the counter or the register, just run the machines, which was why I'd agreed to help. That, and in my dream, my dad was the supervisor, and I was helping him out.

So. I walked into the main area, and this woman at the counter immediately spotted me and hailed me. "Excuse me," she said, in a snotty-haughty-I'm-better-than-you-because-you're-behind-the-counter-and-I'm-not tone of voice, "Correct me if I'm wrong, but MY business keeps YOU employed."

No one else was moving to help this woman, so I gritted my teeth, pasted on my best fake retail smile, and brightly answered, "That's not exactly how I'd phrase it, but how may I help you?"

She proceeded to go through this overly long and needlessly complex list of instructions that I summarized as, "So, you need three sets of this, in color?" I remembered my retail training, upselling, offering her binding or stapling. She went for the stapling, and I was feeling semi-okay at that point. Then she handed me the payment...a large handful of coins, mostly pennies. I knew she was waiting for me to have to count them all out to make sure it was right. I was shaking. Luckily, since I wasn't supposed to work the register, I just handed all the coins to Dad, who apparently had a change counter installed on the register just for smart-ass customers like that. I took the thick sheaf of papers and looked for the color copier.

And that's when I realized the color copier was a tabletop version. Flatbed. No feeder. No stacker. No stapler. I was going to have to hand-scan, then hand-collate, that job. I turned slowly to look at the self-serve area. The self-serve color copier was what I'd expected to find: feeder, stacker, stapler. But that woman was still at the counter, and I knew, I just knew, that if I took her copies to the self-serve area, she'd throw a fit.

That must have been the straw that broke me, because that's where I woke up, that woman's voice and words still in my head. I haven't had to work retail/customer service in three years now. But the six years I did work it have left me scarred. I've had people fling handfuls of change, mostly pennies, at me as payment, sneering, "You count it," while their children look at them, horrified by the manners their parents aren't displaying. I've had people point me out to their kids, "See, this is why you go to school, so you don't end up like her." Little do they know, I have a B.A. Fat lot of good it did me. People looked at me, saw the polo shirt and name tag, and treated me like something scraped off the bottom of their shoe. Treated me like a disposable person, like someone not worthy of respect or civility. And all I was allowed to do in return was paste on that fake smile and pretend like it didn't bother me.

Going by last night's mental blockbuster, I still have a ways to go.


Jul. 24th, 2009 06:33 am
sailorzeo: (huh?)
I really should be making my lunch. I just don't feel like it. What I really want to do is go back to bed for an hour or five. Not happening, though. Got work today, and a LOT of it. I'm even going in early.

Matt starts his real schedule next week, sort of. Monday and Friday are on his actual schedule times, 6-2:30. Tuesday is 8-5 for orientation, and Wednesday and Thursday are 9-5 for more training.

Six am he has to be there. I don't start work until 9. We carpool. It looks like it's going to be back to napping in the car in the morning.

Blah. It's already 90 degrees that early in the morning. Although, once October or November hits, it should start cooling off, making those mornings easier.

Also, I started researching Sedona hotels last night, half-heartedly planning an anniversary trip. When $119 is listed as a "low nightly rate," I know I'm in for trouble.

ETA: I got paid Tuesday, and we do have coffee in the house again...that will make it all better.


Mar. 2nd, 2009 07:45 am
sailorzeo: (billy)
I am amazed. Okay, to start, my hours got cut starting last week. I now work 9=4:30 instead of 8-4:30. Everyone's hours are getting cut, so only losing one hour a day is acceptable, given that it could be a heck of a lot more.

But, I'm still making myself get up at 6, like I did when I worked at 8. That means I have an extra hour around the house. Last week, it still seemed like things were being cut close. Today, however, I got up, took a shower, got dressed, browned the pierogies in butter for my lunch, packed the rest of it (grapes, string cheese, yogurt and an apple), warmed up breakfast (leftover pancakes with butter and honey), ate breakfast, and still had forty-five minutes of computer time. I'm just stunned that I managed that.
sailorzeo: (Default)
..and apparently, I want to type ; for l. I had to retype that subject line three times to get all the right letters in the right places.

So anyway. I had to take 2 sick days this week, even though I can't afford them. At first, I thought it was just something I ate Wednesday night ripping me up on Thursday, but it was still doing it today, so I'm blaming a stomach bug. No use going to the doctor, he'll just say it's a virus, drink plenty of water, that'll be $20.

Work's slowing down. Starting Monday, I work starting at 9, instead of 8, and probably still out at 4:30 or 4, depending on the day. I didn't think to ask that when I called in today. My paycheck was about $100 less than I thought it would be; possibly because of being short a few hours when I took the time off for Ellen's visit. I had enough PTO to cover MOST of it, but apparently not all of it. And I probably didn't bank enough in the time since I've been back to cover my sick days this week.

Matt's still job-hunting. Two of the companies from the job fair had promised to call him back about an interview, but nothing yet. So it's now been over 2 months with just my paycheck, and a lot of help from family and friends. I still have some doll stuff to try to sell, fabric and other craft things, but that won't bring in a lot. I just wish he could get a job, any job at this point. We've proved that we only need $500 more a month to survive. But without that....

Now's the time I'd be overjoyed for Publisher's Clearinghouse to come knocking on the door with the giant cardboard check.


Dec. 6th, 2007 12:23 pm
sailorzeo: (Default)
After living in Arizona for almost a year now, I can empathize with my great uncle who lived in Tucson. He called my grandmother (who lived in PA) one winter, complaining of the cold. She asked him how cold it was. He replied, "It's only seventy!!"

She hung up on him. :)

Right now, it's "only" 66. I still have a few windows open here, because I'm cleaning and I overheat, but yeah. I've had a few days of "Wow, it's cold!" and it's still been "summer" temperatures for what I grew up in.

Also, I quit my job at 2Wire Tuesday. I start as a key operator (production only) at AlphaGraphics on Monday.
sailorzeo: (Default)
Just eight hours to get through and it will be the weekend.

I need a nap.


Nov. 23rd, 2007 06:27 am
sailorzeo: (weird)
I'm tired. I have heartburn. I feel like I don't know what I'm doing, and that the customers can sense that I don't really know how to help them.

I've been told that last feeling goes away, that after a month or so, there's an inner epiphany, that everthing makes sense, that we see the patterns and get into a groove.

But when does a groove become a rut?

There are two modes of thought about this place. For those that have moved up, moved off the phones, it's a wonderful place. For those who haven't, it's a torture pit.

I'm hoping the second feeling doesn't sink me before I get the opportunity to hit that first feeling.
sailorzeo: (Default)
It's ten am, and I just had lunch. My day is half over...I have 2 hours, then a 15 minute break, then an hour and a half til I leave.

It's rather odd, getting used to 4am as a wakeup time, to having a break at 8, lunch at 9:30 or 10 am, and being done with my work day by 2 pm. Of course, that means in bed by 8:30 pm, asleep by 9.

I haven't taken many calls today; this side of the call center is pretty dead. They're begging for people to take early release (er), but I took it Tuesday (when we were sick) and yesterday (to fix my tire), so if I want any sort of paycheck, I kinda need to not-take er the rest of the week. That, and even if I did take it and get it, I couldn't go home yet, because Matt's not taking it. :-P

It feels like it should be closer to two. I'm used to taking lunch between noon and two, and since I just had lunch (leftover chili), it should be afternoon. Right?

What was funny was the battle cry that rang around the floor at 9 am: "Jack In The Box is open!!!" I had to laugh at that.


Nov. 22nd, 2007 05:31 am
sailorzeo: (thinking)
Well, I'm at work today. No rest for tech support. And that's all I'll say for that.

People are going to start requesting early release very soon. Unfortunately, I needed it the past two days (sick on Tuesday, flat tire yesterday), so I can't today if I want a decent paycheck next week.

We took Dante's bandage off yesterday; the toe still looks a little swollen, but a lot better than it did Monday. He still has maybe two doses of antibiotic to take, and a checkup on Monday to make sure it's healing correctly.

The tire turned out to have a razor blade in it. However, since I took it back to where we bought it, they fixed it for free. Discount Tire rocks.

On a completely unrelated note....we saw an ad for those detoxification foot patches the other day. Matt's skeptical. I'm curious. If it stays slow today, I might do a little more research into them. Just because.

Last Day

Nov. 3rd, 2007 09:06 am
sailorzeo: (thinking)
This is my last day at OfficeMax, and it's gonna be a doozy. Yes, my last shift here is another 10-hour, all by myself shift. Just like almost every other Saturday here.

On the bright side, though, if I wanted, I could be a raging bitch to customers. No one else can come in to cover today, so there's really nothing anyone can do.

I even joked last night with Matt that I could just not come back from my lunch break. It's a very tempting idea, but not one I'll do.

I'm still shocked that customers will line up and wait outside on non-ad days. I can understand it on days ads come out; people want to get the good deals before they're gone. But waiting outside the door for half an hour on a Saturday to get an ink cartridge? Go to WalMart; they're open 24 hours, and are probably cheaper! Today, there was a customer waiting outside, face pressed to the door, to get a calendar refill.

Yearg. People.

On another note, I'm planning on participating in NaNoWriMo, however, the first three days of November are jam-packed with work and meeting. Oh well; I'll start on the 4th. My months always start on Sundays, anyway. :)
sailorzeo: (greg mischief)
(repeated conversation yesterday on my lunch break)

"What are those?"
"Dried hibiscus flowers."
(silence) "You eat those?"

Only one person I offered one to accepted. She said they were different, and interesting, and not that bad. She also managed to peg the texture: fruit roll-up like. The flavor, to me, is somewhere between a dried cranberry and a dried cherry. Red. They're high in antioxidants, and a natural refrigerant. I haven't eaten enough in one sitting to notice any difference in my temperature, though. Plus, a bag at Trader Joe's is only like a buck-fifty.

Side note, for [livejournal.com profile] blogofstench. I found the site with the Sims2 machinima I mentioned. http://www.atlas-enterprises.net/ I highly recommend the three-part series "Awakening." Each part is about 30 minutes long, IIRC.
sailorzeo: (Default)
It's the Summer of SciFi Channel.

Eureka, Tuesday, 9 pm
Who Wants to Be a Superhero, Thursday, 9 pm
Doctor Who, Friday, 8 pm
Flash Gordon, Friday, 9 pm

Well, Flash just started last night, so it's a maybe. I only watched the beginning before going to bed and collapsing. It's recorded, though, so we'll probably watch it Sunday afternoon.

The only other series I'm recording right now is a "guilty pleasure" series, Scott Baio is 45...and Single. Couldn't tell you why it caught my attention, but it did.

Come fall, it'll be CSI, Robin Hood, and Torchwood added to the list. We completely missed the last half of the last Battlestar Galactica season, so that's going to be a rental.

And right now, I want nothing more than to be able to go back to bed and sleep another five hours. But I can't. I must to work. Hopefully there won't be as many crazy people as there were Thursday. Back to school, combined with monsoon season, makes EVERYBODY cranky, irritable, and snappy. Unfortunately, we the retail employees aren't allowed to lose our tempers, no matter what the customers say or do to us.

I really need a new job.
sailorzeo: (Default)
Working retail, there is no such thing as a holiday.  :)  In general, I don't mind this, as 1. I don't celebrate them anyway, and 2. it's time-and-a-half, plus a paid day.  What I usually mind about it is the fact that it's impossible to predict traffic flow, and we get about 20 calls (at least), "Hi, are you open today?"  I'm always tempted to say, "Nope, we're just hanging out answering the phone."

But something that really touched me?  One of our regular customers came in, and she felt bad that we had to work, so she brought a pair of $5 Starbucks giftcards, one for me, one for my coworker.  Awww. 
sailorzeo: (Default)
Okay, so Matt and I've gotten into Voyage Century Online, a free MMO, based in the real world, I'm guessing around the turn of the previous century.   We spent ALL DAY yesterday just running merchant missions around Alexandria, back and forth between there, Athens, Istanbul, and Beiruit.  Once we wrapped those up, I decided to go exploring outside of the Mediterranian.  Got as far as Mogadishu before stopping for the night.

Friends of ours back in NC had started playing, and sent us the link to it oh, several months ago, but we didn't start playing until recently.  When Matt asked them about it, "Oh, we stopped a while back, too much grinding."  :-P  Seeing as I played Galaxies as a crafter, I don't mind grinding.

In other news, we went to the drive-in Saturday night, saw Surf's Up and Spiderman 3.  I was "eh" about both of them, but enjoyed the drive-in experience.

Also, today starts my new schedule at work: M/W/F 7-5, Sat 8-6.  We'll see how this works.
sailorzeo: (Default)
It's been a rough past few days.  

Friday, I woke at quarter to seven, thinking, "Wait, was it this Friday or next Friday Kate was off...?"  I was 90% sure it was next Friday, but there was that 10% of doubt.  So, I called the store to double check.

Just a reminder: I live an hour's drive from my store.  If I'm to be there at 8 when the store opens, I need to leave right at seven, if not a little before.

No one answers the phone until 7.  The GM looks at the schedule, "Nope, Kate's not here, you're in today at 7."

Crap.  "Okay, I'm on my way."

But still...that 90%.  So I sent a message to the department e-mail to Kate, to call me on my cell if she got the e-mail.  

I was about halfway there, had just gotten through the rough section of the drive (construction for a light rail tying up most of the road, and will be tying it up for another year at least), when my cell phone rang.

Yep, it was Kate.  

So, since I was already halfway there, I went ahead and finished out the drive, got a coffee, an apple, and some gluten-free snack bars, hung out at the grocery store, and just went in to work about an hour and fifteen minutes early.  

Kevin, the department manager, said to me later that day, "And I even left Scott several large notes letting him know Kate was going to be _late_ this morning because she had to get paper from another store!"

(shakes head)

Well, I got out of work about half an hour before I was originally scheduled, so Matt and I went grocery shopping, and then went for Chinese food.

I didn't think.  I ordered General Tso's.  I love General Tso's chicken.

General Tso's is breaded.

With wheat flour.

(thunks head on desk)

Saturday was ROUGH.  I wanted to smack customers for being rude, stupid, snarky and condescending.  I was having trouble thinking, trouble with simple math and simple concepts, and I just wanted everything to go away.  However, that was my own doing, and now I know I need to find a good recipe for General Tso's sauce and make it at home with non-wheat breading.

One of my best friends is worried because she's getting married next summer, and the location she's booked only allows catered food, and she doesn't know if she can do a reception safe for me to eat.  I'm so, really, completely touched that she's worried about that.  :)  I have to remind her, though, that it's HER wedding, and HER budget, and that's what she should worry about.  I'll be happy for her, and attend and be happy for her, and throw rice balls at her head, whether I can eat or not.  :-D
sailorzeo: (Default)

I'm still slacking in the exercise dept.  I don't know why I'm finding it so hard to get motivated this month.  I like going to Curves, I like the people there, but I just can't drag myself there in the mornings before work.  I think part of it is the state of the house.  There is SO much work that needs to be done here, I find it hard to justify carving out an hour for the workout (15 minutes there, 30 minutes workout, 15 minutes home).  If I had all day to work on the housecleaning, maybe it would be easier to get out to Curves, but when I'm trying to get a boatload of work done from 6-1, before leaving for my 2-10pm shift....well, taking care of myself tends to hit the bottom of the priority list.

Throw in that I'm sick, AGAIN (throat this time, little to no voice), and I just don't have the energy and motivation to do what I need to do.  Have you ever tried to work retail when you can only speak in a whisper?  Especially when a large chunk of your clientele are retirees who can't hear you when you speak in a normal tone of voice??

My wonderful coworker is trying to get ahold of the dept. manager to see if he can cover my shift tonight, in exchange for being off Friday.  I haven't heard back from her, so I don't know if she succeeded.

GF Day 6

Apr. 20th, 2007 12:04 pm
sailorzeo: (busy)
No real problems so far. I like the GF bread (still have to make a loaf using the new yeast, though), and I really like the quinoa pasta (made with a blend of quinoa and corn flour). It tastes like, well, pasta, as opposed to the whole wheat stuff I tried back when I was going low-carb, which tasted like crap. The only problem I've had with the quinoa pasta is probably pan-related: I seem to get uncooked ends from time to time. A bigger pan with more water would fix that, though. A bonus is that it only takes 5 minutes to cook.

I also made gf chocolate chip cookies, using the recipe found here http://www.glutenfreebakingandmore.com/freerecipes.html near the bottom of the page, with a few slight changes: I doubled the amount of vanilla, added a teaspoon of almond extract, and used a cup of mini chocolate chips and a cup of Heath bar pieces instead of just chocolate chips. The vanilla and almond changes were based on years of making the Mrs Field's clone recipe from www.topsecretrecipes.com, and changes I'd made to that recipe as I went. They were tasty; I took some with me to meeting last night, but we got there late (hidden turn, drove past it three times) so I just offered them after meeting to the sister who recommended the GF trial and a few of the other sisters. They all liked them, and one said that if we hadn't told her they were GF, she never would have guessed. Tastewise, they taste like normal cookies; there's just a slight texture off-ness from the rice flour.

I made the quinoa pasta for lunch today, and a quickie white sauce since I was out of tomato-based sauce. Short recipe:
splash of milk
pat of butter
spoonful of Miracle Whip
parmesan cheese
garlic powder
black pepper
Mix and heat through.

If it's a quickie "let's see if this works" type deal, I don't bother measuring.

I've felt okay this week, other than a screaming headache at 2 am Thursday morning, and waking this morning so tired I just went back to bed (woke the first time at 6:30, the second at 11). I was tired Wednesday and Thursday mornings, too (Thursday because of the damn headache), but I've been tired since 1997, so a little worn-out-ness, I don't count as unusual. Sleeping from 9:30 pm to 11 am and still feeling tired, that's unusual.

I work closing tonight, and I'm prepared to work 9 am to 7 pm tomorrow, if the situation with my desktop publisher hasn't been resolved. Today's dinner will be leftover stir-fry from last night (extra-firm tofu, snow peas, edamame, broccoli, carrots, water chestnuts, and rice) and a couple of cookies. Yay, cookies!

I wanna go back to bed....

More on GF

Apr. 18th, 2007 09:24 am
sailorzeo: (busy)
The bread mix I bought worked well (Gluten-Free Pantry's Favorite Sandwich Bread, www.glutenfree.com), and the ingredients were mostly the same as in the recipe I had, so I'm thinking my yeast may be dead. I'm going to get a small jar of bread machine yeast on Thursday, and try the recipe again.

I'm supposed to go to Curves this morning, but I woke up feeling totally drained, so I may put it off til tomorrow. I think I'm going to make cookies instead. Found a GF chocolate chip recipe that looks promising, and I've been craving sweets since Sunday (psychological much? Can't have wheat, wake seriously craving donuts).

Matt and I made a resolution Sunday to not miss meetings anymore. We proved to ourselves last week that we CAN get to meetings. Now we just have to. Sure enough, though, the world is putting stumbling blocks in our way. Last night at work, my closer was sent home almost as soon as she got there (which in itself is foreboding, but I digress). Right now, my department has three people. One is a dedicated opener, because she has a second job in the evenings. One is my desktop publisher, who was sent home last night. The third is me. Now, it says in my file that I am NOT AVAILABLE Tuesday and Thursday nights. This is a non-negotiable. Remember a few weeks back when my closer called off and I couldn't find anyone to come in? Yeah. I knew this wasn't going to go well. Luckily, we had help from another store agree to stay until 8:30 or 9, as long as she left right at nine. It was 5:30 by the time I left, 6:30 by the time I got home. Meeting's at 7:30. We made it by the skin of our teeth. But we made it.

Now I just need to find a closer for next Wednesday, as the Tuesday meeting's moved to Wednesday next week because of the circuit overseer visiting another congregation in the hall. But I'm working on it. Other than that, the schedule's falling into place, and I can even give the two girls 2 days off in a row. Can't give MYSELF two days in a row yet, though. :-P Maybe when our new manager can start full-time, when he's done training his replacement at his old store.

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