Monday, October 06, 2014
I recently blogged that I got a new job!! It came so fast--I got the offer on 9/25 and I needed to fill in my forms by Monday 9/29. Well, I did, and even though the HR guy hasn't been the most responsive, he sent me an email--BEFORE I even received my final offer letter, that he wanted me onboard by 10/20. Ummm I haven't even told my employers because I was waiting for the final offer. And, my salary is actually still tentative (before you say anything, I work for the government which has a standardized system, so I will either be staying the same or going up, obviously I'd prefer to go up, but worst case I stay the same). but uh, yeah, still would like to know. I also was expecting for it to take some time they had to run several background and other checks on me--guess they can still move forward before those are done (not that they'll find anything, but still). Soooo yeah, my current employer knows and I'm hopefully starting in TWO weeks. I am so so glad with my decision. They are not even backfilling my current position with the same type of job so had I stayed I a) probably wouldnt have gotten my promotion and b) been asked to do different types of work that I don't really want to do. I have a niche-area degree. I WANT to be doing work in said niche-area. Hence, my new job--yay!
As for my "other job," I had one sale on my Etsy shop!! one day after I opened!! super exciting! I'm still struggling with my "online presence" on social media and getting exposure, but hopefully I'll get there (and just to put one more plug in, please check it out, favorite it, etc: www.etsy.com/shop/designsbystacylee) I added a few more pieces over the weekend!
On the food/fitness front, I've been terrible. I'm inconsistent and avoiding the scale. Over the weekend I only exercised on Saturday but it was totally negated. I had pizza. We went to a fall festival and got a giant bag of kettle corn then visited a winery. Yesterday I was craving carbs like crazy (probably due to the slight overindulgence in wine, ugh my own fault). But, I forced myself to meal prep and I have breakfasts and lunches planned for this week and I went grocery shopping stocking up on produce and healthy things.
It's been stressful--and it will continue to be, transitioning to my new job. And I've been spending a lot of time jewelry making and promoting my shop. I cannot let other things slip. My goals for are Oct are pretty simple--be more consistent with food and fitness and less (ahem) wine.
Monday, September 29, 2014
Pardon me while I shamelessly promote the opening of my Etsy shop!!!!
can also "like" my page at www.facebook.com/designsbystacylee
Pinterest: sdlee514 and I have a board you can follow that's just my jewelry.
So happy!!! This has been a labor of love for a long time. I know it's not health/fitness related but I just had to share. Again, excuse my excessive self-promotion!
Friday, September 26, 2014
I got a new job offer!!!! I'm still processing. I can't believe my life (because let's face it, work is a big part of your life) will be changing so quickly. For those of you who read my blogs regularly I've been complaining about my work for a while. I like my work itself but my management has been HORRIBLE. Back several months ago after I was told I wouldn't get my next promotion (without even a review of my performance) I was so frustrated that I sent my resume off to a couple jobs and kind of forgot about it. Well, literally this is what went down, 2 days ago I got an email to set up a phone interview for the following day, so YESTERDAY. Pretty sure I didn't even get an email that my application had moved forward or that I was referred. I wasn't even sure I should go through with the interview, but I thought might as well see if I'm qualified and see what its about. Well, I was pretty much offered the job on the spot and got a tentative offer letter by the end of that same day--so YESTERDAY. I now have until MONDAY (4 days including the weekend) to accept and fill out all the forms or I may not be considered. Like I said, whirlwind. Still processing.
Everything she said in the "interview" (I say that loosely because she barely asked me about my qualifications she already thought I was an excellent candidate and basically talked about the team and the work I would be doing) was exactly what I don't have in my current position that I'm most frustrated about. Supervisors who can't manage. No teamwork. Competitive environment. Unfair/unethical treatment. Now I can't guarantee this new position won't have issues, but at least it sounds like a team environment, the woman sounded like she actually knows how to manage, and I would be working directly with others in my field and getting more experience in a variety of work that I would not get in my current position. So yeah, my promotion would have been a big pay raise, and there is still a little part of me that is questioning whether I should have waited it out (would I actually be denied my promotion like I was told?). I'm transferring federal agencies so I retain my current pay (if not a slight promotion) and all my leave, benefits, everything. But money isn't everything and I think this is a better opportunity for my career in the long run so yeah, pretty excited! and relieved not to have to deal with my current managers for much longer! so yeah. big changes coming.
In other news...I haven't been as good with food and working out as I'd like. I'm avoiding the scale but I had a doctor's appt recently where I couldn't avoid it and according to that scale I lost 2 lbs. That was a surprise. My doctor also told me I have mild anemia and put me on iron supplements, which if any of you are on iron or have experienced it, it kind of messes with your stomach so I've been having some issues in that arena, not pleasant. Any suggestions on counteracting that? guess I need to research.
Finally in the news department, and please excuse me while I self-promote, I am SUPER close to opening my Etsy jewelry shop. I have been spending a lot of time ordering supplies (so I can look professional and ship them out once I open) taking pictures of my pieces, and listing them on my shop--I just have a couple more pieces to add and I can officially open! I will have a facebook page and instagram account associated with just my "business." Coming soon! whoohoo!! my family and friends have been pestering me to pursue this for a while and I'm very exciting I'm finally realizing one of my dreams.
Monday, September 15, 2014
This blog is going to get quite ranty so if you're not into that, consider yourself warned.
I haven't been keeping up with my September plan. I've missed several planned workouts and/or they changed to walking rather than a specific hard-core cardio session as planned. Walking is not exactly the same as a full-blown heart pumping cardio session, so yeah, haven't been up to par in that department. I've been better about planning my breakfasts/lunches for the week but still have had several slip ups and forget the weekend. Last weekend was my bf's birthday and that was a full night of badness (food and alcohol) the day after he wanted to go to our favorite sushi place and since we didnt really go out to eat for his birthday, we did that as well. It is nearly impossible not to overindulge at this place, for us anyway. Then during the week I had one day in particular that I was incredibly tired so I had too much coffee (which I can't drink without sugar so...yeah) and I was so worked up from stress at work that I had a (couple) glasses of wine after work. I never do that. ugh. then this past weekend we ate dinner out and ordered delivery the next day. Not healthy in the slightest. Really not doing a good job of that no-binging on weekend thing.
I don't know why it's so hard for me. Just be healthy! Just choose the carrots over ordering wings! just make yourself work out when you're stressed, its better for you than wine for sure! I'm always feeling like I'm taking 2 steps forward and 5 steps back. But its my own doing and fault.
Work has been awful. I think I mentioned a while back that my supervisor told me I probably wouldn't get my promotion, which I'm due for in january (but the fiscal year/performance reviews happen end of september) so I've been working incredibly hard to prove I deserve it. Still my coworker, who technically is more senior than me, is always getting work referred to her and is clearly favored--so how am I supposed to prove myself if I'm not given the same opportunities? I've been trying to create my own work and prove I'm just as valuable.
THEN, I requested my holiday leave on august 5th. I'm only asking for the 2 days before both thanksgiving and christmas because I fly home. My supervisor literally refused to approve them. They have been sitting in our leave system and I brought it to her attention and she's not approving them. She has told me repeatedly that when I request it in the system has no bearing on whether its granted or not (poll, if leave is NOT granted on a first come first serve basis, what IS a fair way to approve or disprove it?). my supervisor told me she needed to wait until she knew what my coworker (the more senior one) was doing for leave. Why her plans were contingent on mine made my head spin. Why do i have to wait for her? What if she wants the same days? How are you going to decide who get its? Are you going do deny my leave b/c she wants it too? How is that fair?? My supervisor told me that her boss, my second level supervisor, wanted one of us (me or my coworker) to be in the office. Now let me preface this with the fact that i was clear I was willing to work half days or be flexible, I just needed to know if I was needed in the office--it wasn't about having to work or not I just NEEDED TO KNOW if my supervisor WOULD approve my leave or not so I could book my flights around times I was needed or not. I thought that was common courtesy. But no. Anyways, I approached my second level supervisor saying I was concerned about my supervisor not approving my leave, flights are getting expensive, and I don't know why she has to wait to hear from my coworker (who was on leave by the way) to approve my leave. She didn't understand why my supervisor had to wait either or what my coworker's plans had to do with it. I didn't WANT to undermine my supervisor by going to my second level supervisor but she was lying to me. My second level supervisor never said one of us needed to be in the office, only that the team needed coverage, and there are others on my team besides myself and my coworker (not to mention, as a supervisor, shouldn't you be willing to make sacrifices and work? that's part of the responsibility of the title). My supervisor is asking for a full 2 weeks off, christmas week through new years week and she cannot approve my one day. Having both me and my coworker be off might jeopardize her ability to take her leave so she needed to make sure or demand one of us work so she could take her leave. So not only is she being immature she also lied to me. I ended up confronting her, I told her that I had talked to my second level supervisor and she never said one of us needed to be in the office, so I didn't understand why my supervisor was telling me that; she was pretty much caught red-handed. she said when did you talk to (my second level supervisor?) I said recently shes like oh, um i guess I'll go confirm with her, so she ended up having to approve my thanksgiving leave, although she's still refusing to approve my christmas leave. To make matters worse, she does this to me every year! And someone always ends up being able to cover the office. But by the time she approves my leave, which is the case now, flights are ridiculously expensive, so now, I may not even go home for thanksgiving until wed night or first thing that morning when flights are cheaper and I may end up working that day anyway. Phew. It has been unbelievably aggravating feeling like she was prioritizing my coworkers needs over mine, lying to me, and having no qualm about taking 2 weeks off herself. OH and the second level supervisor sent out an email saying if you've taken the weeks off for both holidays in the past, be sure to allow your staff to take it off, and asking that they only take off one holiday, not both. So my supervisor comes over crying to me about how UNFAIR that is, and can you believe it?! LADY, you won't even approve my one day and you think not being able to take both weeks off is unfair?
Moral is, even though she verbally approved my thanksgiving leave its not approved in the system and my flights are still not booked. ugh. She claims she's retiring in june and if I can just make it until then I might be okay. If I am denied my promotion come january I will need to consider my options. But that promotion would be a big one :( Sometimes I fantasize about quitting my job and doing the things I love...finally opening my etsy jewelry shop and running a franchise of my favorite barre studio. I even went so far as to request more information about starting a franchise. Imagine the freedom of being your own boss for two businesses! Being creative and staying fit would be part of the job!
So beyond that...some of you may or may not know that I have a history of anxiety; I've gone to therapy for it and it went so far as anti-anxiety/depression medication was prescribed for me but I just didn't have the guts to go through with it. I know you can't live your life in fear but with everything going on in today's world has just been really stressful for me. I live in dc metro and literally work across from the White House. With ISIS and terrorism on high, that's not exactly a comfort. There was an African leadership summit at the white house at the beginning peak of the ebola outbreak--which by the way is no where near under control. Living in such an international area it's really a plane flight away. I really need to just take a break from the news for my mental health sake, but its hard because I do like to be informed.
And then there's my food and weight struggles. I've stopped weighing myself because nothings changed, and if i do lose I succumb to the mindset, I don't really need to lose, so I give in. But at the end of the day, I don't really like how I look and I can't fit into some of my pants so that's what needs to be my motivating factor. I worry about all the events (being in my best friends wedding, etc) I have coming up and my worst fear (I guess I let what others think weigh too heavily) is that people who I haven't seen in a while think I've let myself go. I love my best friend but she does come from a judgmental family (shes the one who was in a pageant, looked anorexic, and her mom was like wow doesnt she look amazing?!) her cousin, the other maid of honor, put on a couple pounds recently (literally a couple) and her mom described her as "so heavy you wouldn't recognize her anymore" and these are the people I have to be presentable for to be in the wedding. not to mention the cousin, the other maid of honor, is already being immature about planning. its like just because she's not the only maid of honor she's refusing to cooperate with me. Case in point, the bride recently emailed us options for save the dates, the cousin responded to her immediately. I emailed the cousin saying hey I think it would be useful to have a place we can bounce ideas and keep each other posted for planning. I knew she's started thinking/planning for the shower so I asked her what shes done and what I can do. I have some ideas for the bachelorette so I shared those and asked for her thoughts. I have received no response from her. This unresponsiveness has happened a couple times already. I mean, she has to acknowledge I too am a maid of honor and that we need to work together to plan, which means communicating--right?
And then there's the ever present thought in the back of my mind that gets me down is why 7.5 years with my bf and he doesn't want/can't/won't commit to me. Holidays are always an issue because we don't spend them together and I'd like to and I've expressed this, and when we don't its kind of like well I guess there's no reason to, we're not engaged or anything but that just drives the point home. So yeah, we'll see what happens this year.
Sorry for the novel rant. I warned you, if you made it this far, thanks for reading and for your support! Here's to turning around the rest of September!
Tuesday, September 02, 2014
So, I didn't get to where I wanted to be as far as weight loss/fitness goals before my vacation. Oh well, I'm over it. Vacation was wonderful, spending time with friends and family and people I don't live near was really great. Plus we had beautiful weather and it was super fun playing tourists, even if it was in our own home states (Mass for me, VT for my bf, plus NH to visit a couple friends of ours).
In all, we visited four wineries, two distilleries, a cidery, a cheese factory, an ice cream factory (Ben & Jerry's!!), and a chocolate factory...um yeah not kidding lol. Apparently being "touristy" equals being a local foodie (what is the equivalent of that for beverages??) My favorite things I ate were some Grafton garlic cheddar cheese and cider fudge (we were in Vermont after all!) Plus going out to dinner pretty much every night. We did quite a bit of walking, hiking, and some kayaking. Overall I gained a couple pounds and was in a desperate need of a cleanse upon returning home--just in time for September!
Visiting my friends was great--except when she asked my bf when he was making an honest woman out of me! I wanted to crawl under the dinner table and die. Then, my friend who I'll be a maid of honor for, dragged me to look at wedding bands (we were all out together being touristy, including my bf! why she needed to do that is beyond me...) her fiance yelled at her, why would you do that, that's putting so much pressure on [my bf]!! Umm yeah awkward. Other than that it was great seeing them lol! I know some of you reading this will relate though ;)
Anyways, between hiking and all the factory tours and watching glass blowing, I took way too many pictures to post.
But here is my favorite one I took of a paddle boarder on Lake Champlain:
We drove up Mt. Mansfield (the tallest in Vermont) and took a small hike to a summit but we were literally in the clouds and it was freezing so there wasn't much of a view and we didnt last long:
Here are a couple of me from hiking:
I'm still not thrilled with how I look. I just think my arms and face look chubby. I'm still sitting at 109lbs (up 6lbs from my low), been here for over a year now.
And, we got a lot of puppy time over our vacation, I love dogs (all animals really) so that was really exciting; this is my fav shot of my bf's parents' golden:
But, my cat, who my parents watched for the week, seemed to really miss us and she was all cuddly and snuggly with us, far more than usual, when we returned:
So for September. I've already developed a fitness plan for the whole month. I'll be focusing on my barre (I have an online subscription, and it does wonders for my hip posture, so I'm trying to keep that up) but trying to up my cardio so I'm shooting for three days a week of each with some flexibility on the weekends for hiking or rest days. As for food, I am FED UP with what I should eat or focus on. Whole30. Strict paleo. modified paleo. low carb. carb cycling. Literally my only focus right now is to stay within my calories most days (shooting for weekdays, and not totally bingeing on weekends) eating low-ish carbs, and whole good foods. If I don't have time to prepare dinner and need to throw in a trader joe's frozen healthy-ish meal (I recommend the mojito salmon!), so be it.
My bf's birthday is Friday and we are going out. I'm planning on this being a cheat meal/night. As long as I can get back on track I'll be okay. Fall is around the corner (even though today was 95+ degrees in the DC area) and its a wonderful season and great for hiking, but I need to get my weight and eating under control before the holidays roll around! ahh!
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