Monday, August 23, 2010

1st Day, Perfected Soda, Bed Set

First day of school was long, long, long! My room was terribly stuffy and hot. It was only 77 degrees outside today. It was glorious when I came outside after being in my classroom! I should've opened my windows. It was bad. Anyway, three 83-minute long classes... One class, on the first day, is the devil. On the first day! That's a terrible sign. I need to figure out how to manage this situation. I kept them for a minute and a half after the bell rang. Yikes.

We discussed a quote on the bulletin board that says, "How little do they see what really is, who frame their hasty judgment upon that which seems." - Daniel Webster. We broke it down, and I tried to help them understand it. 

After three long classes, a crazy lunch duty, a hot classroom, and a devil class, it completely made my day when one of my students came back after school and knocked on my door. He came in and asked if he could please take a picture of the quote on my bulletin board.

How freaking awesome is that? My choice of quote touched this kid in some way. I love it. Makes my job worth it.

In other news, I have perfected my Tiger's Blood Italian Soda art.

I'm eyeballing it, and it's coming out amazingly. I'm wondering how much I'm averaging a drink, since I paid like $3.25 at Cocoa Bean.

1.5 oz strawberry - $.43
1.5 oz coconut - $.43
1.5 oz half and half - $.45
1/2 bottle sparkling water - $.50

Total - $1.81 (plus whipped cream, which doesn't count).

Yep, I win. Except that I can now have one of these every day and am gonna stay fat. hahaaaa.

They called about my bedroom set today. It's coming on Thursday between 3 and 7 (I preferenced later). Hallelujah.

P.S. I'm loving the Harry Potter extravaganza that's on HBO and the Family channel. I think this is the third time I've watched the Half-blood Prince in like 5 days. Not joking.

I went bowling with Sydnie on Saturday. And watched Lars and the Real Girl. And yesterday morning I watched Secret Life of Bees and LOVED it.

And I tried a new ward. It was too small. We'll see.

And tonight I'm gonna watch Best in Show. Never seen it. :) Time to go.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tiger's Blood and Sara Lee

So for five or six months a little while I've had an addiction to the Tiger's Blood Italian Soda at the Cocoa Bean Cupcake Cafe. It's strawberry coconut, for those of you who don't know. It is delicious. I may or may not have earned a few free drinks on their drink cards. They use half and half, strawberry and coconut Torani syrups, and sparkling water... Plus a little whipped cream on top. It's glorious. One of the saddest things about my move away from Provo (one of the maybe 3 things...) is that I can't have these sodas when I feel like it. Not to mention the cupcakes.

Some of you might remember my chocolate chip thing that I did when I had a Red Mango addiction. I am a bargain shopper and will do what I can to save a buck in a craving.

So, naturally, what do I do when I don't have this soda available at my leisure? Price the Torani's of course.

K-Mart had a deal of three 750 ml for $28 or so. I found a better deal on worldpantry.com where I got the same amount for $22. So I got three 750 ml of coconut, 3 bottles of strawberry, and 1 bottle of vanilla (for fun).


(actual photo taken on my beautiful table, only half of my syrups)

I received my package today, so of course I had to try my hand at my Italian concoction (with a little recipe help from Torani's website).

It wasn't perfect, but it was dang good. It'll take a few more practices. Don't worry though, I'm willing to drink it "only OK" several more times... hahaaaa! I think it'll take a little less water, or a little more syrup. Either way, I'll get it right very quickly.

Oh, and don't worry that I got blueberry bagels, a loaf of honey wheat bread, and honey nut Special K bars for $3. There is a Sara Lee outlet right by my apartment. I shall no longer pay $3 per loaf at the grocery store. They shall not get the better of me!

Since I live alone, I have to make my life fun. So I cooked hot dogs over my fireplace in my living room. I was going to do s'mores also (I have the stuff), but am full after that Italian soda. Maybe tomorrow night with Sydnie or Raytch. 

I also watched The Runaways tonight. Excellent performance on the part of Dakota Fanning, and, I'll admit it, even on Kristen Stewart's part. I think her facial expression never changes, but it was one of her better performances. Lots of language, and lez action, if you're into that. I'm not, but the movie was alright. 

My coffee table should get here tomorrow! Pray that Knight's calls about the arrival of my bedroom set as well! Please!

I meet my few 7th graders tomorrow. Wish me luck. We'll see how quickly I fall back into my teacher game, eh?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Move: Pwned

Just to start, does this scream irony at anyone besides me?


OK. Now that we have that out of the way.

This is my bedroom set. I only got the headboard, mirror, dresser, and night stand. But, it was a four piece set for $500. And mine is black, however brown this picture may look.


In addition to the fact that it's totally gorgeous... I also figured out that it will all fit in my room easily!

My table at I.M. Home didn't work out, and I'm SO glad because then I could get the one I really wanted.

It was only $200 ($20 cheaper than the first table, and $20 cheaper than Big Logs had it for)! It looks beautiful and fits perfectly in my apartment.

I went to Ikea to see my options for a coffee table. My mother thought that a black table would be too dark for my couch set ($600, RC Willey), which is this one:

My cushions are reddish brown by the way. 

The table I wanted at Ikea was only $100 and black, but they had no more. And thank heaven for that because...

I checked my mailbox here at Stillwater and got a coupon for 10% off my entire order at Overstock.com. I decided to see if they had any coffee tables. Guess what I found?

It matches my kitchen table! And, with 10% off, it was only $108! Plus tax and $3 shipping. A beautiful matching coffee table for $119! That's what I'm talking about.

Also, don't worry that Big Lots has a matching end table with a lamp on it. It had no price tag on it, so I'm going to go back later and check if it's available to buy.

I'm kind of amazed at how everything is coming together though, seriously? Like when I think I missed out on one boat, a better opportunity arises. Like when we went back to look at my TV to show my mom and grandma, they had knocked it down 20 more bucks. So since it was within a week, they took $20 off my invoice. Yeah!

I also tried Qwest internet. It was activated the day they said it would be. My modem and wireless router work perfectly (I am in the living room, and the internet stuff is in my bedroom). It has yet to fail me. Their customer service was pretty fantastic as well, super easy to call and set up my internet.

At Ikea, I did find a desk! And put it together all by myself, in two hours. It took a long time; it was hard trying to hold everything together myself with no help.

I love it. It fits perfectly in my living room. So until today I was using my  kitchen stool to sit at my desk. But I found this beauty at Big Lots for $50:


I put that together myself about an hour ago and am now sitting comfortably in my luxurious leather chair. 

Don't worry also that my moving day had a totally rough start (having to get to the apt. at 7:30 AM for the delivery of my stuff, when I couldn't move in to the apt. till 9 AM, had to sit and wait with my couches and table and TV, went to get my keys, couldn't pay 1st month's rent with a card, tried to get a money order, couldn't do it till 10 AM, waited till 10 AM, they said I had to do it with cash--freaking wow, finally saw the Chase that was right across the street that whole time, could've gone at 9 AM, went and got a cashier's check, and finally got into the apartment). My brother, cousin Tyler, and I basically did EVERYTHING! It was pretty impressive and amazing. Those boys were incredibly helpful. We three had to get the couch and chaise through my little door. We were rejoicing, giving high fives, etc.

So now I'll have a matching kitchen and coffee table, possibly an end table, if it's for sale...

My DirecTV didn't work out because they couldn't mount the satellite in a place that they could direct it appropriately. I'm not allowed to mount a satellite anywhere except the balcony bars--not on the roof. So I got all the channels Comcast offers, plus HBO, for 6 months for $30. I just have to figure out a DVR situation because I really want DVR. So we'll see.

I'm waiting on my bedroom set, hopefully by the end of the week. I'm sleeping on an air mattress till then. Thanks Raytch! And anxiously awaiting that coffee table.

Also I got a microwave for $59, and a vacuum for $50. They're both really good and were a super good deal. Thanks mom! 

I had to get my safety and emissions done because I need to register my car. I got a deal with my teachers' union thing through Larry H. Miller, free emissions with inspection. I paid $27.50! I saved $17.50, because other places were charging $45 and $47. With a $10 coupon I got for the $45 place, I could have paid $35, but I only paid $27.50 at Miller! How awesome is that?

Also I had to get some more stuff at Big Lots and earned my 20% off purchase! So I saved $20 by doing that. Figure out how much I spent at Big Lots, why don't you? ;)

I've spent a lot of money but have done a good job distributing it and finding the best deals possible before committing to what I've purchased. I'm pretty proud of all of this and am feeling super grown up right now.

The job is starting to weigh on me. I tried to get down to business yesterday and should find it much easier to focus tomorrow as I will be there all day trying to plan for my reading class and my English classes. :) Back to Big Lots for that end table. I now have cable TV--those guys only took 20 minutes while I was writing my blog to set up my TV! Awesome. Uncle Dave is coming to mount my TV and shelf. Oh it's going to be so beautiful when it's finished. And it won't be finished anytime soon, since bathroom towels/decor and whatnot is yet to come.

Lots to do, lots to be thankful for. But pray that I'll be safe in this apartment alone. :)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

New Kicks

Did I mention that while I was packing my desk drawers up the other day, I came across a package from my old babysitter? I fumbled through it and found $6 in cash. Score.

Today I had to try to get my phone fixed. My friend works for Sprint and is amazing and helps me every time I go in. I love her. Thanks Rheanna! She fixed it and it hasn't shut down yet. It got wet at Six Flags. Awesome, I know.

I went to Best Buy to check on the problem with my computer not charging... I was hoping it was the cord and NOT my computer. My positive energy has been answered! The problem was with the adapter portion of the cord. Best Buy is stupid and he didn't suggest replacing it for me. HP was stupid and said Best Buy would have to replace it. So I'm just going a different route and paying $20 for a new cord with NO silly adapter, from a different company. $20 versus the $80 I paid is kind of miraculous. And I'm SO glad it was my cord and not the hardware of my computer. That makes me so, so happy.

Also, I got a deal on satellite and internet for $67 per month. I'm pretty stoked about it. I get a DVR, and a $50 prepaid VISA card also. Yep.

I saw while I was going to Best Buy that Shoe Carnival was having a sale, buy one get one 1/2 off. I wanted some Chucks so I could be comfortable teaching all day, and thought I'd find another pair too. Oh, did I!

Your basic Converse. Haven't had them since 2nd grade. I no longer have to worry about stupid labels attached to such things and can rock them with dressy clothes. Woot. Did I also mention that dude Converse were $5 cheaper than women's? So of course I got the dude ones. Duh.



Check those out! I know, right? I walked by them on display and said, "Man, those are hot!" Then I checked the sizes, and they didn't have mine. I walked away, head hanging low in disappointment. After looking around some more, I thought I'd give them another shot. I tried on the size 6 pair (usually I'm 5 or 5.5), and they FIT! I was ecstatic. Got those puppies for $20. That's right. I'm in love.

$6 in a drawer. Non-broken computer. Non-broken phone. Cheap satellite and internet. $20 hot shoes. 

/end of positive post. I win!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Time for Some Good Stuff

These are the pros in my life:

I have a place to slowly store boxes at to make my move easier, smoother, less stressful... Thanks grandma.

Gas is 7 cents cheaper where I'm moving.

There is a 24 Hour Fitness around the corner from where I'm moving to.

I have packed up six boxes of stuff tonight (my desk, bookshelf, closet shelf, corner of room).

I will be a couple miles closer to my grandma's house in my new place.

My new place can fit the beautiful couch I wanted (only $600!), so I am the proud owner of this beauty:


It's only 10.5 feet long. And so comfy. And beautiful.

I am also the proud owner of a new Coby LCD 32" High def TV.

Delicious, I know.

I get the TV and couch delivered straight to my apartment on my move in day, for $60. This delivery fee lasts for a whole year on anything I want delivered in the next year.

RC Willey offers free accounts for financing. I was approved for a year to pay off the $1000 ($600 couch, $320 TV, $60 delivery fee, tax) with NO interest. I'm pretty excited.

All I have left in furniture is: coffee table, tv mount/shelf, bedroom set (headboard, frame, mattress, dresser, nightstand). I guess that's a lot. Still. It's awesome.

I saw a beautiful set at Knights Furniture and Mattress. $400 for the headboard, dresser, and mirror. Another $100 for the night stand. I'm wondering if I can fit the dresser and mirror (separated) into my huge closet, since I don't think it'll fit in my room. 



Lastly, I worked out hard on Thursday. Then I worked out hard on Friday in a kickboxing class. It was super hard, and I was discouraged at how much my martial arts skills have diminished. Saturday all the muscles in my back hurt, as well as the neck muscles (traps?). Then my rotated pelvic bone was bothering me, so I was walking with a limp. But this is supposed to be a good post! I worked out and it was fun. I'm doing it again tomorrow. Pilates, maybe? If I can get up in time. I haven't been sleeping well lately, so it's probable.

I have TONS to do... I haven't even started planning my school year yet. Yikes. I have to read some books to make decisions on what books I wanna do. I also need to figure out how the freak to plan my reading classes!

I've got to get my gas/electric/utilities in my name at my apartment, get renters' insurance, get internet/cable, read my handbooks/rules, finish setting up my classroom, etc. Yikes. Better get some sleep. Because as if I didn't have enough to do, I volunteered to help Cigi and Jas clean/prep their new house in Payson tomorrow. It's cool. I'm actually excited to help! :)

Exciting, overwhelming transition stage of my life. Wouldn't want it any other way.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Six Flags Misfortunes

We started the day off by getting up before 7 AM. I had a Six Flags season pass for like two years in high school, and I thought I recalled always leaving at the butt crack of dawn to get there early and hit up all the rides. By 7 Jared and I were at B&J's Family Restaurant with our dad for breakfast. After that, we went straight to Six Flags.

Thank heaven for the carpool lane. Yeah, baby! We got there in less than an hour, a pretty uneventful ride to say the least.

I tried to get to a gas station because I had to use the facilities. I sat at this left turn light and honestly watched EVERY side of the street get a green light through TWO cycles before we got the left arrow. I was pissed, cursing the light under my breath. I really had to pee. And then I remembered something dreadful! I forgot my AAA card, which my coupon required me to have in order to get the $27 admission. Crap. I was praying they'd take it anyway and tried not to panic.

We got in line to pay for parking, which I had done ahead of time. It saved me a whopping 75 cents, because Discover is the official credit card of Six Flags. We were second in line. Since we got there at 9 AM, and the park didn't open till 10:30, we had some waiting to do. Fortunately, they started opening parking up pretty early. We caught the tram, got in line, and they accepted the coupon without my AAA card! Thank heaven.

We were at the gate by 10 AM at the latest, and then I noticed a line to the left side with a really important red carpet for VIP people, where only a mother and son were in line. Then I noticed that it was the line for Discover card people. YEAH BABY! We ran over there and got in line.

They let us in 5 minutes before everyone else. It was pretty awesome. So we ran to X2 since that's the most ridiculous line in the park, apparently. I hadn't been to Six Flags since X was there. We had to get a $1 locker to put our stuff in. I was hurrying trying to get on the ride before they started it and closed the locker after putting my phone and water bottle in there. On the way to get on the coaster, Jared asked, "Should we put the key in the locker?" He had the car key in his deepest jeans pocket. I couldn't hear his question, and we had already closed the locker, and we were in a hurry, so I just disregarded him. We got on, and the ride was AMAZING!

After the ride, my responsible brother immediately checked his pocket. With wide eyes he said, "The key! It's gone!"

Tragedy number 1: lost key.

I tried to take deep breaths and think of what to do. So we walked back to the front and put in a lost and found request. I visualized them finding the key all day long so I wouldn't have to call my parents and tell them the news.  But they wouldn't be able to check for the key till park close at 9 PM.

Tragedy number 2: day of anxiety in waiting for the key.

Let me also tell you that when I bought my car at the Ken Garff Nissan dealership, they only gave me ONE copy of my key. I was concerned and tried to get a copy made at Wal Mart, but Mazda makes fancy keys, so they couldn't do it.

We went on a couple more rides, our third one being Roaring Rapids. This was excellent because I chose the best seat on the raft--where I got the most wet out of everyone. (insert sarcasm here). I got drenched, more than everyone else. So did my phone. And now it's turning off whenever it wants. I tried the rice trick. It didn't work. My phone's still being funny. Sweet.

Tragedy number 3: Ruined phone, mildewy clothes... Good stuff. Not to mention the chafing from the heel of my left shoe... I still have a really bad blister!

We went on lots of rides... Ninja, Batman, Terminator Salvation, Deja Vu, Colossus, Tatsu...

Tragedy number 4: Deja Vu beat us both up pretty bad. I had to hold onto my brother so I wouldn't pass out and vomit everywhere simultaneously. 

But let's move forward and get on a good ride! In line for Riddler's Revenge, however, Jared decided he wasn't feeling good after eating lunch. He went to go sit on the benches in the front of the ride. So I waited in line... And waited... and waited.

I was worried about him getting impatient. But I got off the ride, hopeful he'd be sitting around in the area. He was nowhere to be found. NOWHERE.

Tragedy number 5: lost brother.

I walked around the same area three times, more slowly every time.

Tragedy number 6: brother brought no cell phone.

Fortunately, we had set up a meeting place in the front in case we got separated or whatever. I was cursing him under my breath, saying he'd better be there or I'd kill him. After the arduous trek over there (not joking, I went the long way with a huge uphill hike, and my calves paid for it for two days), I found him. With less anger than what I felt, I gave him a stern voiced statement of my discontent. I cooled off for a few minutes, we got some fudge, and headed over to Viper.

I tried to put my stuff in a locker, but my dollar bills were wet from Roaring Rapids (thanks, Jared, for choosing that excellent ride), so it wouldn't take my dollar bill.

Tragedy number 7: And it didn't take coins. Super handy. So I tried to hide my water bottle (a refillable, good one that I've used for a year), and fudge in a planter corner. We got on the ride with no wait. I got my head jerked around harder than any other ride. My ears were sore until yesterday, actually, from the pain of hitting them over and over again. I hit my left ear so hard on the restraint thing, that it actually was suctioned to the restrainer. I was cursing something awful. I was so, so angry. After we got off that forsaken ride, I went to get my stuff. Lo and behold, it was gone.

Tragedy numbers 8 and 9: Lost water bottle/fudge, sore hearing mechanisms. 

Last, but not least, we got on Goliath. It was as amazing as I remembered, and still my favorite ride of all time. Smooth, easy, not jerky, fast, fun, amazing. I love it SO much.

We went to lost and found to wait for our key. By this time the parents had been informed, so we arranged for a tow truck. Then the race was on: will X2 employees bring found objects first, or will the tow truck guy arrive in time to suffocate any possibility of my key being found? We waited in the cold, chairless lost and found area for almost two hours--10:45.

The tow truck guy won, about 40 minutes after he should have been there.

Tragedy number 10: It turns out he was calling the wrong number the whole time he was waiting (not his fault).

This guy was lazy and wanted to go get a different kind of truck to load my car onto instead of the flat bed.

Tragedy number 11: That took 20 minutes, and it was already 11 o'clock.

When we were finally loading up the car, some other stranded kids came to ask him for help. He took a long time talking to them. I was tired, hungry, grouchy, emotional, and impatient. Plus, that whole debacle of switching vehicles made it so that he was unable to unlock my car for me to get my things out of it (including my registration for my car to get new keys made). It was finally loaded, and I was singing hallelujah in my brain, then he went over to talk to the stranded kids again--another ten minutes flew by.

We were finally off at midnight... and we stopped at a gas station to pee and get some snacks.

Tragedy number 12: there was no toilet paper in the stall I chose.

It took an hour for us to get home, and Jared slept most of the way. We got everything sorted out. Didn't get home till 1 AM.

The next day, tow guys came to unlock my car and take it over to the dealership in West Covina, because guess what?

Tragedy number 13: Mazda has a monopoly on their own keys. They are $36 each, and take $96 to program. The programming needs to happen because the car won't start without a "chip." They also won't only do just ONE key. They have to do two. So because of my carelessness in losing that key at Six Flags, I had to pay $170. Now that I'm thinking about it, I'm even MORE stressed about that money. Because I just bought a kitchen table, a couch, and a new TV, I have yet to furnish my future bedroom, and I don't get paid till September. That's $170 that could have been avoided, so easily. Grr. I also am switching my car insurance into my name instead of my mom's. I'm not too excited about these accruing costs.

While it might sound like I was focusing on the tragedies all day, I promise I wasn't. It was my brother's first time to Six Flags. I was trying to avoid sounding stressed in front of him, and tried to get him excited about rides, tried to remain positive about them finding my key. I wasn't grouchy when I had to pay so much for my keys. I wasn't mean to anyone, even the lazy annoying tow truck guy who got me home at 1 AM when he could've easily had us home by 11:30. I didn't complain about my blistered heel, and said I could buy a new water bottle. I avoided touching my sore ears so as not to be upset about it. I tried, tried, tried! And I TRIED to visualize my keys being found, but it didn't freaking work. Universe, I need you to work faster sometimes, please! It's hard to be positive when I get slow results.

There is good news to come. I just wanted this to be documented in blog history. It's also 2 AM. I won't be held accountable for typos, incongruities, or incoherence.