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Easter

April 2nd, 2018 No comments

Joe invited the kids over for Easter. We didn’t hear back from his son at all, but his daughter replied Saturday morning that she and her boyfriend would be coming (although at the time we didn’t know that meant just them since she wrote “we’ll be there” and they often drive up with E). Of course, we had just finished our Costco trip an hour before her text so we didn’t have a rotisserie chicken (she doesn’t care for ham). I ended up pulling out a chicken breast from the freezer when we got home, and we stopped at Aldi for potatoes. I also picked up some hyacinth since they were only $4. I forgot how overwhelmingly fragrant they are, so we’ll see how long they last in the house before I grow tired of them.

I didn’t put together Easter baskets for the kids this year which worked out since E didn’t show and K has been working on getting in shape and has eliminated all junk food from her home. I did throw one together for Wookie, and taught her a new game called “find it” which surprisingly she learned quickly. I put treats in the bunny eggs and would have her sniff one, then tell her to stay while I hid it in another room. Then I’d come back to where I left her and say “find it” and she’d run around the house looking for the bunny egg. It was so cute watching her excitedly trying to locate her treats. We played the new game a few times throughout the day since she loved it so much. She loves smelling everything so the game suits her well. I think we’ll play it often.

K and ES arrived just before 4 and we ate shortly thereafter, then just chatted and played with Wookie the rest of the evening. We also had my once a year homemade carrot cake for dessert. As much as I love it, I really hate how long it takes to make so I might cheat next year and buy a boxed cake and just make the frosting from scratch. If it ends up being noticeably worse I’ll go back to the homemade cake the following year. K & ES left around 9 pm which is the time Joe and I typically go upstairs anyway, so it should have been perfect but I had trouble falling asleep. It takes me awhile to wind down after socializing.

Even though I slept until 8 am today I’m still feeling really tired and kinda grumpy. I made the mistake of going to Savers in this mood (I haven’t been there recently). I tried on a few things but nothing spoke to me, and the crowded nature of the store was getting under my skin. I managed to get my cleaning done and now I’m lying in bed listening to podcasts. I call this my post-socializing hangover.

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Locked Out & Wookie’s Haircut

May 8th, 2017 Comments off

Thursday morning I locked myself out of the house for the first time ever. It happened just as I shut the door between the laundry room and garage, quickly realizing the keys were still on the other side. Luckily I had my phone and was able to call Joe who had just arrived at work and had to come back home to let me in. I also emailed and left a voicemail for my boss letting him know I’d be late to work. Since traffic was pretty good in the direction Joe had to travel he was home in about 40 minutes. I just played on my phone in the garage until then. Boy was I happy I decided to grab my winter jacket at the last minute since I was still pretty cold by the time he got home! I managed to get into work only an hour late and since Joe decided to work from home I only took a half hour lunch to make up some of the time. I didn’t stay a half hour later, however, because Wookie was scheduled to be groomed at 4:30.

I went over, in detail, what I was thinking regarding her haircut, but she still came out way shorter than I expected. Even the groomer admitted she had given me the wrong measurement when she showed me what her overall length would be. I really didn’t want her to look as if she had been shaved and yet to me that’s exactly what she looks like. It’s taken me days to adjust to it and I miss my fluffy hot mess puppy. I hope it grows back quickly.

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2016: A Year In Review

December 31st, 2016 Comments off

I have mixed feelings about 2016 because while Joe losing his job at the end of February cost us valuable retirement savings time, and we couldn’t enjoy his time off to its fullest since we didn’t want to dip into our savings account too often, it was nice having four day weekends together. I’m hoping 2017 will be a little more fun for us overall since we won’t have financial worries hanging over our heads.

January

I turned the dreaded 40
Our first meetup

February

Chocolate Expo
Chicago Auto Show
Post Secret event in Milwaukee
Joe lost his job

March

We spent the month just adjusting to Joe being home all the time and he took over the cooking and cleaning.

April

Private roller skating party
Marshmallow passed away
Went to a Cubs game

May

Brookfield Zoo

June

Got rid of our DVR and cut our cable package to the bare minimum
Went to The Cure concert (which was the highlight of the year for yours truly)
Had a garage sale which was mostly a complete waste of time

July

Joe and his daughter reconciled

August

Indiana Beach
Milwaukee Zoo
Fixed the refrigerator water dispenser

September

Nothing terribly exciting.

October

I had a health scare
Steve passed away

November

Gizmo passed away (Nov 11th) but I didn’t write about it because it was very painful.

We visited Joe’s family in Arizona
Day 1 – Flight & Food
Day 2 – Chicken & Waffles
Day 3 – Botanic garden
Day 4 – Met my great niece for the first time
Day 5 – Wildlife World Zoo
Day 6 – BINGO
Day 7 – Lights of the World Festival
Day 8 & 9 – We adopted a dog and went home

December

Joe got a job
Visited my uncle
Doug passed away
Finally named our puppy

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Great News

December 10th, 2016 Comments off

I’ll just come right out and say it – Joe got a job! We are both so happy and relieved. 

The past nine months have been stressful, probably more so for me than him since I’m the worrier. Luckily with the help of unemployment, cutting back on our expenses, and the marketplace insurance, we didn’t end up having to withdraw too much from our savings to cover expenses and I’m very thankful for that. 

I did our finances the other day and even without contributing much to retirement this year the balance has still increased, just not as much as it would have had Joe not lost his job. The new place has a 401k but no match since it’s a newer company, but it’s still better than nothing so we’ll take it. There’s a lot of potential for him to rise through the ranks if he so chooses so we’re focusing on the positive.

Since he starts on Monday we’re going to try and enjoy our last extended weekend together. Also starting Tuesday I will be taking a full hour lunch at work (as opposed to the half hour I’ve been taking) so I can run home to feed and walk the puppy. I’m not exactly thrilled with the gas that will waste, plus the rushing around, but short of me quitting there’s not many options. Maybe it will be a welcome break in the day. We shall see.
Oh, and in true Nicole fashion, take a guess what I decided to splurge on at Target after receiving the good news? Cuddl Duds and leg warmers. LOL! I probably would have gotten them regardless since I live in them in the winter but now I won’t feel guilty about spending the money (plus they were on sale).

Categories: Life, Work Tags:

Sunday Alone Time

October 9th, 2016 Comments off

Today was the first day in a looooong time where I had the house to myself for more than an hour. Joe left around 9 am to go to the shooting range with his buddies. What did I do? Dishes, finances, (partially) catch up on my YouTube watch later list, catch up on some blog reading, look for freelance jobs to supplement our income, and back up photos which included finally clearing out my Microsoft One Drive account so I have space to do regular iPhone photos backups again.

What didn’t I do? Decorate for Halloween like I had planned (maybe tomorrow) or take a shower. Hell, I didn’t even put my contacts in! I’m still in my PJ’s which include a pair of ridiculously cozy soft pants I got at Savers for $3 recently. They are gray with polar bears on them and I just love them! I hope they don’t shrink like my fleece Star Wars pajama pants did. They are still comfortable, but they are too short now and my legs get cold.

I’ve also been listening to The Cure play in Europe thanks to someone who has been Periscoping the entire show. The picture is sucky on the computer but the sound is fantastic. The set list has been all over the place which I like. They played The Baby Screams and Disintegration which were awesome! Right now they are two songs into their 1st encore. They started around 1:30 pm so I estimate it will end around 4 or 4:15 and I think Joe will be home soon thereafter. I’ve enjoyed my day but man did the time fly! I don’t feel like I did much yet it’s been 6 and a half hours. Where does the time go?

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