Go Vote

When we were in Belize last year, our last day there was completely a day off for everyone. It was Belize’s voting day for prime minister. Stores, offices, buses were shut down. The entire country was focused on getting people from their homes to the polling places.

Do your civic duty and vote tomorrow. There are so many places where people don’t get to say. Don’t let people tell you America isn’t great. It is. Most people are very blessed in this country. We just forget to pay it forward. We have to remember to be humans and to treat others with respect.

I texted my brother this morning to remind him to vote. He had already early voted. I’m glad at 19, he is being a responsible citizen!

This will be an election I will remember for years.

Burnout at 26?

I have avoided writing this post for a long time. Why? Well, for many reasons. I feel incredibly lucky and grateful to be where I am today at 26. I did not come from a well off family. My childhood was difficult and honestly my life today is what I imagined it to be when I was young. I wanted to be a career woman and happy. I am happy. My husband is my best friend and companion, and I have found an incredible set of friends. Even though currently they are still in Texas. My relationship with my parents has been improving…slowly, very slowly. But I can’t fight off this feeling and I want to put it all out there.

I feel the burn out. I read posts from a couple years ago and there is a stark difference in overall excitement and motivation. Even thinking about going on vacation is met with thoughts about how much planning I have to do, traveling, etc. It would be just so easy to stay at home and relax.

I think the burnout really started to creep in last year. And this year with all the new changes and job, I just try to do my best to keep myself going. We haven’t taken a vacation this year, so I’m missing out on the rejuvenation from vacation. But see paragraph 2 again. And now that we have moved away further from family, we have to do crazy traveling. There are many times where I just wish we could stay at home and enjoy the downtime. But we would be labeled selfish by both sets of the family. Most people enjoy being with family. Me? It’s fun, but also a lot of work. I don’t know how the people in Friends got away with not spending holidays with family.

I, also, think my perception of my closest family is changing. You know when a couple starts having kids, and their nuclear family is their kids and themselves? I know for sure my parents see us this way. When my mom thinks of her family being together it means having her kids (my brother and I) with her. It doesn’t necessarily mean being with her family (her parents), although that would be a plus. I remember talking to my mom on this last mother’s day. She was very sad because she wasn’t going to spend mother’s day with my brother or I. But then I mentioned to her, she was actually going to spend mother’s day with my grandmother (her mom), and that my grandmother would be happy to be with her. It wasn’t the same thing, she said.

As you read this, it might not seem like a big deal. But in Mexican culture, family is very big. And so by deviating from the nuclear concept of family, I’m not only deviating from my culture, but I’m also in turn being very selfish (catholic guilt).

My husband is tackling this as well. His parents seem very liberal in their concept of spending time with family, but really are not. His mom also has a very strong concept of family.

But we all grow up. I’m growing up and my nuclear family has become my companion, my spouse. How do you translate this to your family? How do your parents begin to understand their needs are not necessarily your needs? And how do you communicate the deviation? It’s not an easy answer, especially when you care about your family and when your family is very strongly opinionated (nicest way to put it here).

Don’t get me wrong. Family is family. I still feel very strong towards them, but when you are so tired…sometimes it’s hard to balance everything.

Now to the job aspect. My last job was stressful. Tons of work, very demanding stakeholders, etc. This new job is stressful in different ways. I’m drinking from a fire hydrant and learning the politics around here. The competition is very fierce. It’s a very competitive team environment. In in front of my desk by 7 am. I often don’t leave till 6 or later. Now some might say, well just quit your job or find a way to retire early and not have a job. I don’t know if either one is the solution. Plus, it’s not the solution any time soon.

There is a reason I stepped away from monetizing and growing this blog a while ago. I need a creative outlet where I didn’t have KPIs or deadlines or have to think about others’ perception of me. I, also, don’t want to be pressured to write about how my life is very rosy and beige. It’s not black, but it’s not peachy either. I’m tackling challenges left and right. I’m battling burnout and somehow trying to figure out how to stay motivated. I’m exhausted. So exhausted. I probably wrote about this through my latest blog posts, but I never really addressed the issue as a case of burnout.

Plus, it sucks to acknowledge burn out when you have so many bloggers that are early retired. But they are just at a different point in life. I’m 26. This is what it’s like to be 26. I feel both old and young at the same time. Maybe this is why you see so many people take off and do an MBA around this age? Quitting for two years is not an option for me. One, I already have an MBA. Two, I don’t feel like being stressed out over money because I don’t have a job will help my mental state.

There is no clear answer, so I will just keep chipping away at the mountain. Tomorrow will be another day!

**Again, not depressed. Just tired. I need an entire two weeks of just sleeping, going to a spa, etc.

*** I feel for the parents that have kids. I don’t know how people fit everything in a day.Feel so much respect for parents.

The Itch To Own Again

It’s weird a feeling. The itch to own a structure, to have a mortgage. To say to people, this is is my house!

There are a lot of opinions on the rent versus buy. Financial practicality aside, owning your home is very emotionally charged.

While we are not ready to buy another home in this new city, a part of me is getting the itch to own again. Sigh…such an irrational itch!

Darn HGTV and your house hunters collection!

Owning the last home (oh wait we still own it) was both satisfying and exhausting. It’s really changed our perspective in terms of what we would want in our next home.

We are enjoying being renters for now. Our apartment is very cute.

Need to remind myself about the downsides of owning a home – the maintenance, the down payment and costs, the permanence. It would limit our ability to move due to a job. Although switching to another company is not an option right now. I need to stay with the company for 3 years to vest my 401K match!

ahh..irrational feelings. Maybe it’s because I’m an immigrant. My immigrant parents are also very attached to their real estate. My mom’s dream is to own a nice little home.

Doctor’s Appointments

I hate going to the doctor. You always have to wait. Then doctors see you for five minutes. Then you wait more. Then you leave.

Time, so much time wasted.

Well, I’m new to the city, it makes it worse.

I made an appointment for today, Friday at 3 PM. I planned to leave work between 215 and 230 because it’s a 30 minute drive to the doctor’s office.

I have a meeting with a VP at 130. VP doesn’t show up till 150. Meeting runs over. Leave at 235 in a rush. Get stuck in traffic. Call to say I’m going to be a few minutes late, get told I only get a 10 minute grace period.

Get there at 314ish. Get told I need to reschedule because I was suppose to actually be there at 230. New patients must get there 30 minutes beforehand. OMG!!!

I was so MAD. UPSET! ANGRY! I took off work to go to my annual appointment.

So now, I have a middle of the day appointment next week. It’s at 11 AM. But I need to be there at 1030.

So I need to leave at 10 AM. Get there at 1030. Be check in at 11. The appointment will take at least an hour because I will wait for the nurse, doctor, etc. Then head back to work. So at least 2 hours shot next week. Wonderful. NOT.

AND you see why I hate doctors’ appointments and only go when I have to.

  • Dermatologist once a year appointment to get acne prescriptions
  • Annual
  • Physical (which can happen at the same time as my annual)
  • Dentist 2x a year
  • Urologist 1 a year to check on my kidneys (medical condition)

And that’s a lot of appointments. Growing up, I didn’t have insurance, so would only go to the doctor once a year (urologist – medical condition since 7 years).

Now that I have insurance through work, I only go 6 times. Even when i get sick, I don’t go.

Because it’s an inconvenience. The only reason I go get an annual is because I need birth control.

Pardon, not pardon, the incorrect grammar, punctuation, etc. At this point, I’ve decided this blog is to express my thoughts. So yeah, those are my thoughts. 

 

New Job

I mentioned before my life has been quite hectic due to a relocation and new job over the summer. I was not actively looking for a new position, but I was open to starting a new role in the next year. When I say active, I mean spending time applying to open positions on the web. Several companies had contacted me through LinkedIn about varying types of roles throughout the country. For the past year, I had been honing my interview skills by replying and going through the companies’ hiring process. At the time I had acquired 4 years in the technology industry. I interviewed with many tech companies, as well as oil, retail, and CPG. I knew relocation was possible, but it was also possible I could land a new role in Dallas, TX. Staying in TX would be ideal because my husband would not need to find a new job.

At the same time, I was also pursuing roles within my company. I made it to the final round for two jobs (I know this either through discussions with the recruiter or people close to the hiring manager). One was in sales and the other was a similar role to what I was in but in another business unit. I was also in discussion with another manager to try to get on his team (again similar role but different discipline). Ultimately the leads fell through but I learned so much from it. It’s tough facing rejection, but it gets easier the more you face it. Plus, every interview round taught me many things about myself. I just kept trying on both fronts. 

I just knew it was time for a change. I communicated this to my manager and he was actually giving me more. I truly miss working for him. The new work was actually exciting, but it was hard because I couldn’t let go of my then current responsibilities. In essence, in order to pick up new and exciting work, I had to expand my workload.   

So guess, my desires where answered and out of nowhere I landed a role with a company that wasn’t even on my radar. We picked up and moved.

I’m not going to lie. It’s scary. Even though I was getting tired of my previous job, I was comfortable and confident. I knew who to go to, I knew what to do. I could say no because I was an owner, and people trusted my opinion and decisions. It took four long years to build relationships and knowledge. And I know to some four years is nothing, compared to ten years, etc., but the point is it took time.

Now, I’m starting from scratch. I miss my friends, I miss my home, I miss my favorite places to eat. I’m scared I will fail at this new role. I’m considered a newbie (once again), and even though I have more experience in the function than some people I’m working with, I don’t have experience with the company. And I know it’s extremely important to get the internal company knowledge. 

But in order to grow, you have to jump into uncomfortable situations and embrace change. This is what I’m doing. 

Credit Card Hacked and Other Updates

Hubby and I were sitting down on the couch Saturday morning. I was procrastinating starting the day and reviewing our finances on mint, when I received a Discover text alert about a mysterious transaction. Since I was checking our accounts, this was a very recent charge. I immediately texted back a “no” and called Discover. Our credit card was shut down by Discover and we will be receiving a new one. While it’s going to suck to update the bills that are automatically charged, I’m glad Discover caught the purchase so quickly. This is our 3rd credit card hack this year. The first two was with our chase credit cards (my hubby’s first, and mine later). Since we don’t really use our chase credit cards, I knew it wasn’t us when it happened. Thankfully, we will not be responsible for the fraudulent charges. One of the benefits of a credit card. We are using our backup credit card until we get out replacement cards.

The weather was beautiful on Saturday. So I decided to get out of the house, get some exercise, and go antiquing. It was awesome. I found a lovely antique store in St. Louis (The Heirloom). Check it out if you have a chance. I checked the entire antique row and the store was my favorite. The owner was so lovely and friendly. I splurged when I fell in love with a set of breakfast trays. I have wanted a breakfast tray since we got married but never found one that was worth the money or unique enough for my tastes. Also, I was glad to support a small business and such a wonderful owner. Customer service does win.

I did much better on the exercise front this week. My hubby made this amazing pulled pork in the croc pot. I feel like it should become a weekly meal :)

I still have to go donate a bunch of stuff. My car has been packed for months and I just haven’t made it to goodwill or a church. My goal next weekend is to go drop it off and finally free up space in my car!!!

Payday is next Saturday!!!! So close!

 

 

Active Lifestyle Battle

The constant battle with staying healthy and living an active lifestyle. This concept is in direct contradiction to work lifestyle which encompasses me sitting down in front of a monitor and rarely getting up. I do believe exercise is truly necessary for your daily life. I feel better, more energized, and happier when I am active throughout the day. Squeezing in time for exercise must be part of a daily routine and ever since I moved to a new city and state, my routine has bene nonexistent. The pounds have followed, not a lot but just enough. When you notice you are having trouble zipping up your jeans, it’s time to get up and move. The concept is of course a lot easier in my mind than in practice. My goal is to work out five times a week. These workouts initially are going to be easy. Light jogging combined with walking. But it will start the progression to harder workouts, which I know I physically can do, but have no motivation.

So far this week, I went running/walking on Monday and Tuesday. I want to go running/walking (probably mostly walking) on Wednesday. But as I write this, I already want to just go lay down after work and take a nap.

I’m writing this to remind myself I need to go. At least go walking and get some steps. I will feel better in the long run. It takes a month to establish a habit. I’m at day 2, again. I have tried to start the 30 days for the past two months. I can do it. I must go walking. I must.

Update – I walked and achieved 16K steps for the day.

Tomorrow a 4 mile run!

Sept 2016 Update

I’m sitting down to write a post after a very long break. I feel like my writing hobby took a backseat as I took care of other items in my list. My job role expanded with more responsibilities, the house DIY endeavors, Toastmaster officer’s responsibilities, and a couple other volunteer endeavors diverted time from my writing hobby. Nevertheless, I did keep up with my favorite blogs.

Then, out of nowhere I got a job offer and I relocated to the mid west (this probably requires a more in-depth post). Let’s just say this past summer has been the ultimate adventure. Our finances have been tested and we are settling into a new phase in our life. I’m hoping October will be our first month with regular bills. Well, before the holidays hit!

I’m learning so much at my new company, so definitely more to come on this phase.

I honestly can’t believe it’s halfway through September. The end of the year will be here before I know it. I want to get on the wagon with the hobbies that bring me happiness including working out on a daily basis and writing on my blog.

I didn’t disappear. I was just taking a break. Living life.

Corporate Fog

Well, hello again. I can’t believe it’s April. Where does time go?

I’m stuck in the corporate fog. Day in and day out. Weeks pass. Weekends come and go. So time is flying. I’m not really sure how to stop it. It is what it is.

I joined a new team in January. Well, my team merged with another team, which in turn got gobbled up by another organization. “Corporate restructuring to improve efficiencies.” My new manager is wonderful and remote. Actually our entire team is all over the world. A few of us sit in the USA and others, sit elsewhere. It’s interesting being part of a true, global team. Our manager sits in his own location and rarely sees any one of us face to face.

There is a lot of pressure to increase profit margins. Every day, the work piles on, and it seems like not enough gets accomplished. But I suppose it’s better than not having a job. The company has been laying off left and right. But it’s all part of corporate strategy now. If margins are not high enough according to Wall Street, heads will fly.

All fun! Tis’ the life of a corporate slave!

 

 

New Couch Purchase

I have been wanting a new couch for a really long time. But as usual I have champagne taste with a beer budget. After buying a couple of couches that I ended up not liking because they were “more affordable,” I decided I was going to save up my pennies to buy something I really liked.

We spend much of our free time on the couch. We relax while watching tv, I love reading a book on the couch, etc. A couple of years ago I decided I was going to allocate all of our credit card rewards to the purchase of a couch. I saved every single penny. Many people say they don’t have the patience to save the money and they usually spend it, but I had a goal.

I really loved sectionals with down feather wrapped cushions. Looked at Pottery Barn, Mitchell Gold, Room and Board. Did I already say I have champagne tastes?

Well, then I found out about Interior Define. Interior Define has a unique business model. Custom sofas at the right price. Their process bypasses unnecessary middlemen and markups. they pride themselves in offering well-crafter, highly custom pieces at an uncommon value.

It’s important to realize:

  • They only have one showroom in Chicago. To keep costs down, they cut their retail supply chain. If you don’t live in Chicago, you don’t sit on the sofas.
  • Order online or with the help of a rep.
  • Custom choices
  • 365 day return
  • Delivery is “free.” It’s basically included in the price of the couch.

I started looking at the sofas in the fall and tried to read as many reviews as possible. I ordered fabric swatches and started talking to a designer specialist. Over the course of a few weeks, we emailed back and forth and discussed fabric, dimensions, sofa, and leg options. It was a really, easy experience. The rep was really responsive. The experience was very personal. No corporate responses with them!

Finally, I pulled the trigger. I had enough money saved up from credit card rewards and decided to purchase the Ainsley sectional. It takes 8-10 weeks for the couch to arrive because the couches are build to order and custom. It won’t arrive until the end of February or early March. I am super excited! I will share more once I get the couch.

Check out Interior Define. This is not a sponsored post by the way. Interior Define doesn’t even know I blog. The post is based on my personal opinion.

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