Saturday, April 28, 2012

Party Party!!

Hello everyone!!

There have been some major changes that have happened in my life in the past week, so let's catch you up on them!

Last weekend, was definitely busy! Saturday morning, I worked the javelin at the WSU track meet and remembered to put sunscreen on my face, but that was it. This means that I got burnt on my neck where my polo shirt opened up and on my arms. I also got stung by a wasp twice that somehow worked his way up my pants!! What a creeper!

After the track meet, I worked on getting ready b/c the Chemistry Dept. banquet was that night as well. I got all dolled up and Erin picked me up in the concert-mobile. We had a bit of a detour b/c I had to pick up my bib and tshirt for the 100k relay in the morning. Then we went to the banquet.

The food was pretty good but the program was pretty short overall. I ended up getting an award because I'm graduating this year and I won the TA of the Year Award!! Makes me feel like having to teach for 3 years was worth it now b/c I've finally been recognized. Here are some pictures of the banquet...

The graduates

TA of the Year

Erin, John and me

Sunday morning, I participated in the WSU 100k relay. I had leg #3 which was about a mile uphill and then almost 7 miles downhill!! I have now learned that running downhill is harder on your muscles than running uphill any day! The race was Sunday and I was sore until Thursday. This is what I get for not wearing my compression shorts! Doh!

This was my leg...


Yikes!! I had planned on doing it in an 1:40 and ended up 11 minutes slower, but it turned out that it was almost 80 that day and the hottest day of the year in the area so far this year! Needless to say, I had not trained for that kind of heat and ended up rationing the 16 oz of fluids I had in my water belt as it was. I was also a dork and forgot to bring any kind of fuel with me. I could have used it after about mile 6. Oh well. Here are some pictures.

My handoff. See guy in yellow? He totally barfed after this pic!

I'm off!

Adam running!!

Adam and Sarah exchange

Sadly, I only have 2 races left in the PNW. I have Bloomsday, which is next weekend and then I have the 2nd Annual Jog for the Jugs in Lewiston, ID which is a 5 miler for breast cancer research.

Thursday, we went to Steak Night b/c it was John's birthday on Friday!! So he got to drive the Stang!

I have other pictures from the night which include party hats but they are on my phone and I forgot my cord to transfer them. It was a good night even if the service was amazingly slow. We all got a round of free birthday shots with the owner and John took a second round with him during the wait. But we did get 3 rounds with the cookies!!

Friday morning, I got a phone call at 8:12, while I was eating my breakfast from the Company in Columbus that I had interviewed with a few weeks ago.


I of course accepted on the spot b/c there was nothing to think about!! I was on cloud 9 all day after that!! Telling anyone and everyone that I have a real big girl job!!

Lots of things are going to change in the next few months. I'm working on selling my lovely trailer. I need to finish writing, working in the lab and get some edits from my boss. I need to pack up all of my crap and move across the country!! But this time I'll be going in the right direction!!

I have loved my time in the PNW but have realized that it's just too hard being this far away from family to be able to spend any kind of holidays or anything with them. I will defeinitely miss the people, but not really the place.

I was told that some wise grad student of the past had said, "Happiness is seeing Pullman in your rear view mirror." I have to agree with that statement! I'm looking forward to bigger and better things!

I would like to buy a house, so I'm getting that ball rolling. I would like a new car and a new puppy! I have decided that Heif needs a little brother and if I get a house, then I will have plenty of room for one more!!

I have lots of work to do in the next few months, that is for sure!! I have a tentative start date of July 2! :)

Anyone out there live in the Columbus area? Any suggestions on where to live? Races to find? Stuff to do?

I'm all overly excited at this point!! :)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Finished Ch. #3 and a Relay

Hello All!!

It turns out that this whole trying to get out of grad school and moving on to the next step in life is a lot of work and is very tiring. Let me try and catch you up with things since I've been away...

Holy crap! I just looked and it's been over 2 weeks since I've blogged! I'm very sorry!! I have more catching up to do than I had thought. Put your seat belts on b/c this is gonna be a long one!!

Let's back up to last week...

I flew from Spokane, WA to Columbus,OH on April 10 which was a whole day adventure and 2 flights. I got into town a bit early and took a cab to my hotel. I met up with a friend from high school and his wife and we went to an Italian place called Bravo! It was pretty good. I had a penne dish with some lobster bisque. They get me every time with that lobster goodness!! After dinner, I went back to my room and fought to go to sleep due to the 3 hour time change. I was essentially forcing myself to go to bed at 8pm which is a sin in my eyes!! It was hard but I was finally able to nod off.

After waking up a few times in the night in a panic that I had slept in, I was up by 6am to get ready for my big day. I wore my fancy big girl pants and shoes, but sadly I forgot to take a picture. I had a lovely free waffle breakfast at my hotel and was sad to find that they didn't have any fake scrambled eggs so my protein quotient went down for the morning. I hailed a cab to the place, which was just up the road and sat for a half an hour b/c my OCD of being late got the best of me.

I met with the HR lady, the lady I interviewed with in SD and then did an exercise called a 'work sample' for them to get an idea of my knowledge. I went to lunch in the on-site cafeteria with 3 current employees and had an awesome salmon burger and seasoned fries for less than $5!! That's amazing for lunch!! I had a Mtny Dew b/c I knew I was going to need a boost for the afternoon.

After lunch, I met with another Dept. Manager b/c I was apparently interviewing with 2 Departments. I also met with the head hauncho lady manager of the whole division and then more Dept. Managers from the other department. I got my things and hopped in the taxi that was waiting for me to go back to the airport.

I changed into normal clothes in the airport bathroom. Very classy, I know!! Went through security, secured a giant tea from Starbucks and then sat and waited for my flight, that was not for another 2 hours. Better early than sorry.

We finally boarded the plane and the pilot came on that there was a hydrolic issue and we needed to wait for a mechanic to come over to fix it before we could take off. This took over an hour! Luckily, I had over an hour layover in Phoenix and should make my connection to Spokane on time. I sat next to a very lovely lady and we chatted most of the 4 hour flight. We finally landed and I bolted off the plane b/c I had a connection and ran to my gate. They were just finishing up boarding, so I had made it!!

I got on the plane to Spokane and got to sit behind a hoard of high school girls that were coming back from a school trip to Mexico somewhere. Let me tell you! I don't miss the days of being in high school and for all of the teachers out there that put up with these kids every day... you need some kind of medal of honor! I was close to hauling off and verbally assaulting the twits in front of me. After about a half hour, they finally went to sleep b/c it was after their bed time and I was able to enjoy the 2 hour plane ride in peace.

The rest of the trip was smooth sailing.

This past Monday, I received a call from the HR lady, asking me if I was still interested in the position. I tried not to squeal with excitement at her and said I was of course interested and she said she would get the background check paperwork going and to expect to hear from her in a week.

This news started a flurry in my mind and I started some serious looking for places to live in Columbus. I have found about 20 houses that Heif and I could live in and possibly a little brother for Heif. With this advancement, I contacted a Mortgage Lender in Columbus to get the ball rolling for pre-approval of a home loan. I've exchanged many emails and signatures this week and am all ready to go.

All I need now is my official OFFER LETTER!!!

Keep your fingers crossed!!!!

In running news, I will be participating in the WSU 100K Relay on Sunday and am doing Leg #3 instead of #8 that I did last year. I have 7.9 miles all downhill. I'm thinking it will be pretty easy but I'm not looking forward to recovering from that many miles downhill.

Super good luck to the SoCal Relayers this weekend!! I'm totally not ready for anything as hardcore as that but it seems like lots of fun!!

Sorry for boring you with all this jibberish... but I didn't have any pictures to show you from the past few weeks.

OH! I also submitted Chapter #3 to my boss for corrections. Only 2.5 chapters left to go! I'm considering the Conclusions chapter only a half b/c I'm not the extremely verbose type!!

Have a great weekend everyone!!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

San Diego Recap - Part 2

Wednesday morning, I woke up early to a beautifully sunny day and a new Cruise ship was outside my window. It's amazing at how big those suckers can be!!

I was at the trolley station by 7:45 for the 8am trip in towards the Old Town Depot. After the second stop, there was actually a transit authority check where they check to make sure that you purchased a ride on the trolley. This was the first and only time I ever saw anyone checking and of course they caught someone who hadn't paid.

I made it to Old Town and then waited for the #8 bus to go to Mission Beach for my whale watching expedition of the day!! I needed to be there by 9:15 to check in and was about a half hour early. I gave them my Groupon for the trip and wandered around the water for a bit. More people began showing up and it wasn't until about 9:45 that we boarded the boat for our 3 hour cruise.

The Privateer

My new love!

Previous sightings for the week

Some weird stork-like bird

When we were just leaving the dock, there was a floating dock that some sea lions were sunning on. Apparently this is where the fishing boats load up with their bait. Not a bad place to hang out for a free meal! There is even some kind of cool bird in the bottom left corner. 
Do you know what it is?

And then the dolphins came! We saw 2 types, the Common Dolphin and the Bottle Nosed Dolphin.

And then the real fun started b/c we came across 2 juvenile Fin Whales!!

Thar she blows!!

Anyone think of Moby Dick with this one?

The change in water color is the whale going under the boat.

They got pretty close. We were just floating in one spot and they were swimming around us and feeding. The law states that boats can't come within 100 yards of whale but they can approach you. I guess they are very inquizitive creatures b/c they were checking out the boat for about a half hour. We finally had to call it quits and head back to land.

These guys didn't get far...

Pelican love!


Winner Winner Fish Dinner!!

Adult Pelican

After my fun on the water, I went back to the conference and watched John and the Boss give their talks. Then, I met up with an old friend of a friend for drinks at an Irish pub called The Field where they had Strongbow cider on tap and Happy Hour prices of $5/ 20oz. pint!! Sadly, I only had 2. But I also snagged the Fish & Chips special for dinner. 

Afterwards, I met up with John and his 'Oak Ridge Boys'. No these are not the singers but guys that are friends with Mel at Oak Ridge. We went about the Gaslamp District drinking and landed at a gelato place!

My first gelato! Dark Chocolate/ Strawberry!!

I called it a night about 11:30 and walked back to the room and crashed.

Thursday, I woke up and got ready but my talk wasn't until the afternoon, so I walked along the water to Seaport Village and bought some souvenirs from the Sea Shell Shop. I stopped at the Greek place and got a Spanikopita platter for lunch.

When the time came, I was dressed in my best and took a taxi to the Convention Center. I gave my talk and was outta there! I came back to the room and changed into some travel clothes and then took the hotel shuttle to the airport. This would be the beginning of a long trip home!!

I was through security by 5pm and got some dinner and a cup of tea. My flight wasn't until 7:15, so I hung around and read some more of 'Mockingjay' the Hunger Games book #3. The time came and we boarded the plane. Everything was going as planned until we rolled away from the gate. The pilot came on telling us there was an 'Air Traffic Jam' and we would have an hour wait. I was fine with this b/c I had enough wiggle room with my connection in Seattle.

We finally took off and were in the air for about 1.5 hours when the pilot came on again that there was something wrong with the pressurization of the plane and we would be making a landing in LA to check it out. I've never been to LA but this wasn't exactly what I had in mind. We landed and ended up changing planes. After everything was transferred, we took off and there was a smooth flight to Seattle.

We got into Seattlle only about 4 hours later than scheduled, so they put me up in a hotel about 5 miles away from the airport. Their shuttle stopped at 1am, so I took a $25 taxi ride there to spend 5 hours sleeping. I got free breakfast out of it though. My next flight didn't fly out of Seattle to Spokane til noon, but I could start waiting on standby starting at 7am. I tried for the 10 and 11am flights with no luck and then went to my gate to wait.

It turns out that my new seat was in First Class!! I've never been in First Class before but it wasn't as fun since this was only an hour flight. :( I read a little bit and then took a nap. We got into Spokane and my bag was waiting for me. I finally pulled into my driveway at 4pm!

I was so glad to be home!!

Have you ever had a disaster flight pan out? What happened? I don't think I'm going to fly with that airline again, but I didn't pay for it in the first place.

Next up, fly to Columbus, OH on Tuesday, April 10 for a second interview!! I'm only going to be there for about 24 hours though, so I can't really fit in a whole lot of fun stuff!!

Suggestions on places to eat in Columbus?