Friday, November 22, 2013

Be Nice

Seriously, just be nice.

I did not feel like working last night. It was one of those "I'll be here but I'm not going to try hard" type of days. Immediately after I got to Pier, a woman needed some input on gifts for her sisters. In my head "I don't know them so what do you want from me? [insert scowl here]"; out of my mouth, "sure let's look at the candles! [insert big smile here]" Twenty minutes later, we had put together a tray of candle holders, votives and ornaments for each of them. The excitement was so apparent on this woman's face, it made my mood turn a little better.

The next customers were just browsing but with one specific item in mind. Of course it's the one thing we no longer carry in the store, which I realized after spending 30 minutes searching for it in between helping other customers. Mood slightly dampened. Mood even more dampened when, another half hour later and after they had left, I find what they were looking for on the clearance rack. Soooo annoying.

Until I turned the corner and there they were!!!! They hadn't left yet!!! It ended up not being what they had remembered and they didn't want it, but I was just happy that I had found the darn thing. I actually thanked them for helping me learn and find something new.

One of the women looked at me kind of stunned and told me I was a great salesperson. Let me just note that I am NOT a great salesperson. I can help and teach and advise, but sell? Nossomuch. But it was her next comment that got me: "You're so nice". She didn't appreciate me because I helped her find a product; she appreciated me simply because I was nice to her.

So lesson to me, lesson to you. It's the holidays. I know it can be stressful. But seriously, just be nice. It may make their day better but it will definitely make your day better.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Wearing Pants

What is a girl to do when her absolute favorite thing to wear is also her husband's most hated item in her closet? What could possibly be so bad that I would suggest he hates them? My sweatpants.

Because when I say "my sweatpants", I mean the one and only pair I own. The 3-sizes-too-big/paint-stained/too-short sweatpants. I LOVE THESE PANTS. All day, I pay attention to my posture and suck in to pretend I still have my perfectly flat 20-something stomach. When I get home, it feels so amazing to put on a pair of pants that have no suction to my body. They really are horrendous though and I have begun to feel bad that I'm subjecting my husband to such a complete potato sack of at home fashion so early in our marriage.

But what are my other options?

I, like most women my age, have a nice selection of yoga pants - a couple full length, a couple cropped pants, all black with one or two of them having a touch of color. They are awesome options on Saturday errand days when putting on a waistband just ain't happening; on overnight visits to others homes when it would just be inappropriate to put regular pj's on prior to 5pm; and on that day or two during the month where I pretend it's the start of my new exercise routine (until I start again next month). However, yoga pants aren't my fave. They are made out of stretchy material and often conform to my body (as they are supposed to) rather than giving me the soft, flowy, breathable feeling I'm looking for when I'm just chilling.

Other than yoga pants though, I've been unsuccessful in finding another pair of casual pants that are both comfortable and would fit me well enough to get a thumbs up from Ped. Women in general have a hard time buying pants. Even the smallest of us have bumps and curves in unexpected places that may not fit into our "normal" size or make the crotch of a pant sit at your knees or leave a gap the size of the Atlantic at the waist. A lot of us have big (enough) booties and small (enough) waists that standard sizes just don't fit right.  My biggest issue has always been having pants fit my thighs while still sitting okay on my waist. This is a HUGE problem with sweatpants because most are snug at the thighs then have enough material at the crotch where I could incubate a baby kangaroo. Until now.

I just received a pair of sweatpants from Old Navy that had been given a 4% chance of working, but earned a 100% upon arrival. The waistband is loose enough where it feels secure but doesn't feel tight at all; there's plenty of room in the thigh area; they are uber soft; and bonus! they're long! If you have pant problems like me, here's the link:

Women's Fleece Sweatpants

I bought the Blue Corsica ones which are really cute in person. I typically don't wear bright pants given the general size of my bottom half, so I'm not sure what drove me to this color, but even that is awesome. It is Old Navy so each pant may be cut a little differently, and some larges may be more snug than other larges. Either way, I highly recommend for us fat-bottomed girls and will probably be indulging in another pair at some point in the future. Old Navy has a million coupon codes and sales throughout the holidays so don't pay full price. I got mine with a 35% off coupon and ended up paying $12.35.

Ped hasn't seen them yet but I'm pretty sure he'll be wanting to burn my old pair in lieu of these ones!

(This isn't some sponsored post - mostly because I have no idea how that would work. I'm just trying to look out for my girls. However, Old Navy, if you're reading this (which you're not) and you want to hook a girl up with some free pants, I have no shame in taking them.)

Monday, November 4, 2013

How I Know

How do you know your significant other loves you? What do they do that means more than most people outside your relationship would understand? What is that thing? That special thing?

Ped is a great guy. He's funny and outgoing, dependable and loyal. He's opinionated and outspoken, headstrong and confident. He also screws up alot but that's not what this post is about.

We will have been married for 3 months on November 16 and together for 6 years in December. We have had our rough patches and still go through them every once in a while. Shockingly, life isn't perfect just because you get married. Who knew???

I am pretty proud of how good I have become at keeping up our house and learning to cook. Ped has learned to be very vocal in his appreciation of my housekeeping (sometimes too vocal. Dudes, if the word maid is ever used in a compliment, it will not be taken as a compliment. Just some advance warning.) This was not an aspect of our relationship early on, but over the past year or two, he has noticed how I feel better about myself when I know he is happy with me, and has adapted to my need for verbal affirmation. While I am a superlative example for a housewife and he is a superlative example of a husband*, these roles are something we work on every day and what we vowed to each other during our wedding ceremony - to love and serve each other. (*Note my sarcasm)

So how do I know Ped loves me?

You know how guys have one or two things in their lives that make them giggle like a little girl? The show, Arrow, is one of those things for Ped. He talks about the last episode for 3 days after the show then tries to predict the next episode for the next 3 days. He follows the actors on Twitter and is constantly researching obscure information about the characters. The lead's name is Oliver and we may or may not name our son that one day if we have one.

Arrow is on at 8:00pm on Wednesday evening which is about 10 minutes before I typically get home from work. Every week I burst through the door hoping I didn't miss anything good, and every week the TV is on a different channel as Ped waits to watch it with me. That's how I know. It's not something he's supposed to do or something he has to do. It's not the nice thing to do or the most convenient thing to do. Ped waits to watch his favorite show until I get home from work because he loves me and enjoys it more when I'm next to him. It may be a small gesture and seem insignificant to some, but it's my thing not yours.

A few people have told me they read this blog and I really do appreciate my words being read by others. I would like to hear from you though. What is your thing? How do you know that your significant other loves you? Something small, something big, something others may feel is stupid, it doesn't matter. What makes you understand that you are loved by the person you love?

Comment on the post within the blog (rather than Facebook) if you would like to share. Hope to hear from a couple of you. Seriously, hearing lovey dovey things is like getting a big ol' technological bear hug.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

I Have a Job!!

It's been a difficult few months for me in the job area. Before moving from Delaware, I was working as an Investment Advisor with a team of people whom I called family for eight years. I felt I was on a good career path that could have resulted in a pretty high salary. When it was time for me to move, I had to decide whether this would be my career for the long haul or if there was something else out there for me. After a lot of discussions with the hubs, and a lot of prayer, we decided that my current job would give us financial freedom, but the stress and ill feelings I had for the career in general was not worth it.

Thus my enrollment in school and my search for a part-time job began. Fast forward through September and still unemployed. I was doing my best to maintain our household and submerge myself in schoolwork, but I was having a hard time finding complete happiness with that lifestyle alone. After 8 years of earning a salary and being financially dependent, how does one just stop and rely on someone else so completely? Ped did his best to keep my spirits up and never pressured me but I needed to find something else to do.

Soooo....I have a job!!! Well, actually I have two but wanted to wait until I was secure in both before posting anything.

First, I'm working as a math instructor about 6 hours a week. I'm going to school to become a teacher and this has been my first experience actually teaching/tutoring students. The kids are between 2nd and 12th grade and complete a curriculum based on their individual assessments. We also assist with homework and studying for upcoming exams if needed.

The first day was uber intimidating. A lot of the students are working on fractions and percents (along with multiplication and division). The very first question I got though was "would I use the Pythagoream Theorem for this?". What? Where's the "I don't understand 1/2 times 1/2" question??? I'm on week 4 now and appreciate the refresher of basic math skills so much. I really do love being here and seeing the look on the kids' faces when the finally understand a concept that's been eluding them.

Second, meet your newest Pier1 Sales Associate! I'm back to my retail roots and am enjoying it immensely. Mostly because the products we're selling are AMAZE BALLS! Seriously, think about how you feel when walking around a Pier1 store. Now imagine being there multiple hours a week and knowing you get an employee discount. (It doesn't help that Ped's first reaction to my hiring was "when can we start shopping?") I have been good though and haven't bought anything after my first three days.

I feel great about getting out of the house and contributing at least a little to the household income.  There may even be opportunities to do more at these places once the new year starts but I'm not thinking too much about that right now.

(FYI if we buy you a present at any point during the year, you can just assume it will be from Pier 1. Just a head's up.)

Friday, November 1, 2013

Household Duties: Ironing

Review:    Thumbs down.

Ped has a conference next week. I took this as an opportunity to buy an ironing board, bust out the iron, and go to town on all of his button down shirts.

Ironing sucks. That thing that retailers do where they sell wrinkled men's shirts and call it the "worn" look is just an excuse so no one in their company has to iron or steam anything before putting them on the racks. Because they know how much ironing sucks.