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kcaleece

KCAleece Gets Fabulous!

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Okay, so all like three of you who check in on me regularly (I love you!! No, really, I do!) will be shocked and heartbroken...but...I'm picking a not-LotR theme this time around.

 

Well, kinda.

 

I never do a good job of keeping up with my own themes anyway, but I've been getting super into Queer Eye lately, so I thought that would make a fun challenge theme. Unfortunately, there's not a fitness/physical activity expert on the show and I already have a bunch of quests under the sorta catch-all "culture" topic, so I'm combining. You never knew Legolas was the secret sixth member of the Fab Five, did you? :highly_amused:  

 

So! With no further ado...

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Bobby Berk - Home/Interior Design

The most underrated member of the Fab Five, at least partly because he doesn't usually get quite as much airtime as the rest of the guys. 

 

Quest 1: Combine shelving in 2nd bedroom
We're going to need to move my son into the second bedroom probably around the end of this year/beginning of next, so we need to clear out the extra stuff we have in there right now! There are currently 4 bookshelves in there and my goal is to be down to at least 3 by the end of this challenge.

 

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean
This will not only help my husband's stress levels - he's very much a "gets freaked out when things aren't super clean" kinda guy - but also help keep random items out of the toddler's mouth/hands. Plus it does legit look nicer, of course!

 

Quest 3: Decide on next big project
We're getting a healthy tax refund this year and we're going to end up setting part of it aside to do the next home improvement project...if only we could decide which one to prioritize! It's a careful balance between what we'll get the most enjoyment/function out of, what we can afford even with that boost, and what we have time to actually make happen.

 

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Antoni Porowski - Food

My second favorite member of the Fab Five, mostly due to a quiet mutual love of cheese, corgis, and multilingualism. Probably the cast member who is the most like me currently.

 

Quest 4: Defeat the sugar demon!
Antoni and I share a weakness too - emotional eating and food/sugar addiction. I'm going to keep my dessert timeframes the same (only allowed between 1:30pm and 9:30pm) but bump myself up to a goal of 7 days this challenge with no dessert at all. I made it last challenge, but was somewhat unfairly helped along by a stomach bug, so now it's my turn to do it for reals.

 

Quest 5: Cook at least 3x this challenge

I haven't cooked for my family in quite some time (my husband has been doing most of the cooking). But with my grad school semester winding down early, I definitely want to start picking this back up. 2 more weeks of class and then my time is mine again! (mostly. kinda.)

 

Quest 6: Cook at least one vegetarian dish

Really this is more like a sub-quest, but...work with me here, okay?

 

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Jonathan Van Ness - Grooming

I get why everyone loves Jonathan, really I do. But the man is so energetic it makes me tired just watching him! I'm going to take on some Jonathan energy, but like...only a little bit in case I explode.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task
So I have a particular self-care task I'm really, really embarrassingly bad about not bothering to do. But I'm going to make it a focus and get it done! At least more often than I was.

 

Quest 8: Do my 5 manicures

I like my manicure quests! My correction this time is to not count interview manicures more than once, because I feel like that's cheating the purpose honestly, and also I'll set a specific kind of manicure to try for but I haven't decided what yet. Maybe a smoosh manicure?

 

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Tan France - Fashion

My personal very favorite member of the Fab Five and one of two people I've ever looked at and said I genuinely wish I could be that person when I grow up!

 

Quest 9: Clear out box in the master bedroom

So I have a giant box of clothing that's been sitting in our master bedroom just randomly since we moved here...very nearly a full year ago. That's my next target for the try-on-and-donate-the-cull push!

 

Quest 10: (Find and) dye the Portugal dress
So I have this white lace dress that I bought in Portugal over our honeymoon when I needed something cooler to wear that would fit over my first baby bloat, and unfortunately it got really badly stained from the belt I wore over it (short version: waist seams never hit me right so I cover them up with belts, and my most trusted black belt must not have liked something in the air because it has never stained a dress before or since). But I really don't want to just write it off, so I'm going to find it (honestly not sure where it is right now, might be in that box actually...) and I'm going to try to dye it a dark forest green. I love the way green looks on me and the way I look in green, and hopefully that'll cover the stains in time for me to wear it in Mexico this summer!

 

Quest 11: Summer shoes

I am in bad need of new shoes, especially for the trip. I'm going to find and buy at least one pair of good shoes to wear this summer!

 

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Karamo Brown - Culture

Okay, so culture seems to be kind of the "catch all" of personal growth stuff on the show, so that's kinda what I'm doing here. Sorry Karamo!

 

Quest 12: Spanish

So this one won't start until after my interview tomorrow, but...yeah. Spanish fell apart last challenge, and I majorly need to get back on that particular horse if I want to have a better interview season next year. My particular subgoals for that:
3000 words reading
1000 words writing
90 minutes speaking
5 podcasts or videos for listening
 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

Job postings are starting to slow down, so I'm not going to put a number on this, but I need to be able to say at the end of this challenge that regardless of if I get another offer or not, given my best professional judgement, I did the best job that I could to find a better option for me and my family.

 

Quest 14: Family trip prep
I have a TON to do on my son's busy book if I want it to be a fun and useful tool on our trip. For the sake of my sanity though, I'm going to set a goal of 2 pages done during this challenge. I also need to keep getting the pictures backed up/off my phone so they're safe and there's space to take more! So let's go with...three more months of photos backed up seems fair, August through October for a start.

 

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And my unofficial addition because I can (and also I didn't feel like this quest fit into Karamo's section acceptably decently) :) Don't worry Legolas, I'll always love you the most.

 

Quest 15: Get myself going
I started doing much better last challenge! This one, I'm kinda taking that idea of Arwen (my mental Elvish self) and tweaking the format a little with set category goals instead of overall frequency:
Primary challenge will be walking/running with a first goal of 15 miles covered
Then strength/bodyweight work with a first goal of 15 workouts (even if that workout is just one activity)
Last is the flexibility/agility/body control goal combined into one with a first goal of 10 workouts

 

Whew! Okay, that's a lot of quests, but they're all pretty focused and specific, so I'm not too worried about that aspect. Let's get it started! (I promise I'm doing a Jonathan shimmy dance right now, you just can't see it hahaha.)

Official countdowns:
28 school days left
57 days left until we go to Mexico

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You have quite a lot going on! 

 

What ideas do you have for the next big project? I LOVE a good home improvement project :D

 

I'm super picky about shoes, but have found Born sandals, while spendy, are totally worth it.

Where in Mexico are you going? And what are you going to school for?

 

 

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Official countdowns:
26 school days left
55 days left until we go to Mexico

 

1 hour ago, Tova the Vibrant said:

You have quite a lot going on! 

 

What ideas do you have for the next big project? I LOVE a good home improvement project :D

 

I'm super picky about shoes, but have found Born sandals, while spendy, are totally worth it.

Where in Mexico are you going? And what are you going to school for?

This is true! I'm often pretty busy but this semester has been much worse than normal.

So our top list of possible home improvement projects so far include tearing down the walls between our living room/dining room and replacing them with banisters (there's a staircase in-between); adding onto our patio in the backyard because the previous owner built a tiny add-on that moved the back door and now our patio and door don't match up anymore, which admittedly looks pretty weird; replacing the living room and hallway carpet with hardwood so it matches the kitchen/dining room/other hallway; replacing the kitchen backsplash, which makes me sad because I actually like it better than the counters (they clash pretty badly), but tile is cheaper than granite counters; replacing the carpet in the basement; and retiling our showers because they're currently done with suuuuper cheap, textured "tiles" that grab at my hair and make it impossible for the baby's suction cup toys to stay attached. Probably several of those are still too expensive, but those are our biggest wants right now! 

 

Thanks for the tip on the sandals!
We'll be in Mexico for about 3 weeks and we know so far we're definitely going to Mexico City and Puebla. I also want to go to Oaxaca but we're trying to figure out how to get there from Puebla before we commit. It's a combination of visiting family (my husband's family is from Puebla), introducing my son to that part of his heritage/culture, and getting some immersion time with Spanish for me. I'm a world languages teacher, currently only certified for French but trying to add Spanish as quickly as possible - I'm currently working on my MA in Foreign Language Teaching and am getting ready to start another MA in Romance Languages possible as early as this upcoming fall semester.

 

For my challenge updates, I started tracking things yesterday for a total length of 34 days. But for the sake of post length, I'm only going to update on quests I made progress on:

 

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (0/1 days)
Whoops, I already failed at this...I started cleaning it off, didn't finish, and then put more stuff on it after working on the busy book last night.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (1/1 days)
Completed!

 

Quest 8: Do my 5 manicures (1 done)

I did a new manicure yesterday. It was technically supposed to be my interview manicure, since I have/had 4 interviews this week (3 done already), but I was just so discouraged and upset and wanted to do something different and damnit all, if my slightly sparkly lavender nail polish was what kept me from getting a job, they'd not be worth the trouble anyway. It's still not "in your face", just not quite as standardly subtle as my normal interview choice. So that's what I did, and it's soooo pretty y'all. Like, for real. Cadillaquer (the brand of this polish) can be a bit hit or miss for me, but this one is a total hit!

 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

Okay, so I technically didn't progress on this yesterday (had 2 interviews instead), but UGH. I'm really getting super discouraged on this whole thing. I've been to a bunch of interviews - well over a dozen - in the last two months and even the ones that went super well won't answer my follow-up phone calls or e-mails. It's super not helping that this is a *terrible* year for French teachers. We get these swings where some years there are lots of postings and some years there are none at all, and, well, this year is definitely the latter. Only 3 postings in the entire city; 2 of those are half-time and 1 was closed without being filled due to low enrollment numbers. The good news is that I got interview calls for all 3, so when the jobs exist I'm clearly marketable. But they don't exist this year, and while I have 6 other certifications, it's clear that it's a stretch to fit me into those positions. Why should they hire a language teacher when they can easily find people specialized in (social studies, biology, whatever)? 

 

Quest 14: Family trip prep (1 busy book page started, 1 month photo backup done)
I started on busy book page #1 last night (it's a cute dump truck page that actually can dump "dirt" out of the dump truck!) and got the first three pieces put together to make the cab of the truck. I also got the August pictures backed up fully (on my laptop and external hard drive) and deleted all but the top favorites off my phone to start making space for new ones. And hey, I finally got the "out of storage" error message off my phone too hahaha.

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On 4/15/2019 at 5:27 PM, kcaleece said:

Legolas was the secret sixth member of the Fab Five,

 

I had my suspicions. That perfect hair!

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So cool that you are going to dye your dress. I never even thought of doing that. Of course, I've had very few white clothing items, as I am sort of like a stain magnet.

 

Having to decide which home remodel to do is always a big decision.We've sort of prioritized, but then due to money, or just changing interests we've swapped. Doing our deck was one of the biggest payoffs. Having a nice deck feels like it gibes me a whole new room in the nicer weather

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6 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

So cool that you are going to dye your dress. I never even thought of doing that. Of course, I've had very few white clothing items, as I am sort of like a stain magnet.

 

Having to decide which home remodel to do is always a big decision.We've sort of prioritized, but then due to money, or just changing interests we've swapped. Doing our deck was one of the biggest payoffs. Having a nice deck feels like it gibes me a whole new room in the nicer weather

Thanks! That's still assuming I can find it...I had a bit of a moment earlier today when I realized I might have used it as free packing material to protect some of our more breakable items during the move, which could mean it's stuck in a box in the basement too (we're like 98% unpacked, but there's definitely a couple down there I don't really want to have to go through just to find the dress). Crossing my fingers I shoved it in the back of the closet or something and forgot!

And I agree, the home remodel decision is a tough one! But when I came home from work today, it might have been decided for us and not in a super fun way...we've had this drain in the basement that's been backing up about once every three months (the previous owners DEFINITELY knew about the problem and didn't disclose it, the jackasses) that we thought we had fixed, but the carpet right next to that wall is feeling just slightly damp again and the air smells just a tiny bit musty...ugh! 

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44 minutes ago, kcaleece said:

Thanks! That's still assuming I can find it...I had a bit of a moment earlier today when I realized I might have used it as free packing material to protect some of our more breakable items during the move, which could mean it's stuck in a box in the basement too (we're like 98% unpacked, but there's definitely a couple down there I don't really want to have to go through just to find the dress). Crossing my fingers I shoved it in the back of the closet or something and forgot!

And I agree, the home remodel decision is a tough one! But when I came home from work today, it might have been decided for us and not in a super fun way...we've had this drain in the basement that's been backing up about once every three months (the previous owners DEFINITELY knew about the problem and didn't disclose it, the jackasses) that we thought we had fixed, but the carpet right next to that wall is feeling just slightly damp again and the air smells just a tiny bit musty...ugh! 

Ugh, the emergency have to do that now  decision. That seems to actually make up the bulk of our home remodel decision. 

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16 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Ugh, the emergency have to do that now  decision. That seems to actually make up the bulk of our home remodel decision. 

We might have dodged a bullet there...my husband took a look at it and found a spot where a connection leading to the drain just wasn't very tight, so he tightened it and set out the dehumidifier to help dry the small puddle that was starting to show up. Hopefully that'll be it! We really need to replace the carpet there thanks to all the water (it's not very far away from what's supposed to be a playroom, but I'm worried about mold growing underneath where we can't see it), but my husband doesn't want to spend the money to do so before we're 200% sure the drain will quit backing up so much.

 

Challenge updates from yesterday!

Quest 1: Combine shelving in 2nd bedroom
I started on this...and yes, I'm "cheating" and cleaning off the bookshelf that already had one shelf basically empty (there were like 8 books and that was it). So that shelf and the one underneath it is now clear! 3 more shelves to go, but these are actually full hahaha.

 

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (1/2 days)
Cleaned yesterday and still clean this morning!

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (2/2 days)
Done yesterday too!

 

Quest 11: Summer shoes

I found a pair of super cute sandals and another pair of wedges on Zappos and had them sent to the house. I love Zappos because they ship free both ways and allow a full year for returns, so it doesn't have to feel like a gamble to try something on even though you're shopping online. And free 1 day shipping means they should show up on my doorstep today!!
 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

3 applications filled out yesterday, 1 of which I have actual hopes for and the other 2 were honestly just because I could (that district hates me and has been refusing to call me for years - guess I made a really bad impression at the one interview they gave me forever ago). But!!! BIG change here - my husband and I decided last night that I'll cool my heels on the applications and only apply to "top prospects" from now on for two reasons: 1, my district has decided to move me for next year, so even though I'll still be in a crappy district, I'll be in a slightly better school. And I do mean *slightly* - my current school is in the bottom 2% of schools in the state and this new one is in the bottom 6%. But hey, new school, new coworkers, new grade level (dropping from high school to elementary!), new chances to impress people and get better letters of rec, more time to pass the Spanish Praxis, etc. etc. etc. And 2, the really important one here - we decided to take advantage of this to hit the 12-month minimum for FMLA eligibility and try for baby #2 a bit early! We weren't going to try until October at the earliest because we thought I was going to be elsewhere, but if I'm maybe staying here...well, that means we can try right now!! This month we'll be lazy about it to kinda give the applications I already have out a chance to decide if I'm really 100% staying or not, but if I am, we'll start properly trying in May. Yay!! I've been wanting another baby for like 6 months now if I'm being honest :D I'm a little sad to lose the total focus I have right now with my son, but we definitely want a couple more kids so he'll have to face not being an only child sometime...

 

Quest 14: Family trip prep (1 busy book page started, 2 months photo backup done)
I got September photos backed up yesterday, which I thought was pretty encouraging. I should be able to stretch this goal maybe all the way through the end of 2018! I also worked a tiny bit more on the busy book getting the grass done for the dump truck to be driving on...
okay, cute story time. So I brought my son to the store to find a new piece of felt for the background of the dump truck page. I showed him all the colors, picked out a few I wanted/needed, and then told him to pick out his favorite color of felt. He's young enough (just shy of 18 months) that what he really understands is always a little bit questionable, but I pointed out all the options, showed him ones I knew he liked (he's shown a preference for red in the past), etc. etc. to try to get him to point or grab one. He just looked at me, looked at the felt, looked at me, looked at the felt...and finally toddled down the aisle a little bit more to pull out a sheet of adhesive sparkly "gemstones" and gave that one to me! I tried to get him interested in the felt colors, but he just kept on handing me the gemstones. Alright buddy, I get it! So we bought the gemstones...hey, maybe the dump truck is working in a mine or something? I'll figure it out. I just hope my sweet boy doesn't lose his sparkle as he grows up :) 

 

ETA: Whoops, almost forgot!
Official countdowns:
25 school days left
54 days left until we go to Mexico

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Good to know about Zappos. I've never bought shoes online because how they fit can vary so much.  Woohoo, can't wait for the bay announcement!

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I love Zappos! If you ever buy something, and realized it's gone on sale a bit later, they will also comp you the discount if you ask nicely. Their customer service is fantastic!

How exciting for baby #2! Mr. and I are contemplating baby #1 late this summer. There are so many things about having kids that totally freak me out, but I do want a family!

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On 4/18/2019 at 10:58 AM, Elastigirl said:

Good to know about Zappos. I've never bought shoes online because how they fit can vary so much.  Woohoo, can't wait for the bay announcement!

 

On 4/18/2019 at 11:44 AM, Tova the Vibrant said:

I love Zappos! If you ever buy something, and realized it's gone on sale a bit later, they will also comp you the discount if you ask nicely. Their customer service is fantastic!

How exciting for baby #2! Mr. and I are contemplating baby #1 late this summer. There are so many things about having kids that totally freak me out, but I do want a family!

 

Okay, so I might have been a little too excited about the possibilities of Baby #2, because now suddenly the possibility of changing jobs has suddenly become a lot more likely. Long story short, I applied to a job that's technically a demotion (it's like a combination of a building substitute and classroom assistant, with a similar 50% cut in pay...ouch!) but it's at what is very arguably the best school in the entire city. Submitted my paperwork at 8am, got a call at 11:30am that same day asking to set up an interview with them. Wow! There's a lot of disadvantages, but also some possible major advantages (getting to put their name on my resume/reference letters, possible teacher benefits to get my son into their school when he's old enough if I'm still there, super close to both my husband's work and the physical campus where I'm taking all my Spanish classes). We're sticking to the original plan of "begin trying casually this month and make an official decision in May" but...come on, they don't call people within 4 hours unless they're really interested/intrigued. I freely admit I laid it on pretty thick in my application and highlighted every halfway cool thing I've ever done to get their attention...apparently it worked? Hahaha but if I get the job, we'll probably put Baby #2 plans back on hold until September so the due date would be post-becoming FMLA eligible (it's only a few extra months to wait, I know, but it feels like forever...)

 

Official countdowns:
24 school days left
52 days left until we go to Mexico...I think. I'll need to check my calendar to be sure...

 

Okay, so it's been a few days but let's see if I can catch up on my challenge...

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (3/4 days)
It's starting to get a little messy again, but it's not too bad to clear off again as long as I keep up with it every day.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (3/4 days)
Missed one day (and haven't done it today yet), but I'm trying to remember it more often than I was last challenge!

 

Quest 10: (Find and) dye the Portugal dress
Found it!! So it was actually in the baby bassinet that's still in our room currently holding a massive pile of laundry. Oops? Oh well, at least I found it! The stains are a little worse than I remembered, but I still think it's worth a try. The dye will at least make them a lot less obtrusive (hopefully) and I can still cover it up with another belt or ribbon to help hide them even more. 

 

Quest 11: Summer shoes

So I bought two pairs of shoes from Zappos and I might have already worked this one out! I wore the wedges out around downtown last night for our very long overdue date night (we hadn't been on a date since January...) and despite being straight out of the box brand new, I only had one toe that hurt a little tiny bit after 5 hours. It looked a little red last night but is totally fine today; it might have been a little different if we were walking all day - we did a good bit of walking but also a lot of sitting - but that's pretty impressive for wear #1 out of the box! I'm trying the sandals today...they've been working out well so far but I've done even more sitting today since I've been working on graduate school stuff at the coffee shop most of the day so far.

 

Quest 12: Spanish

1,600 words of reading done in 2 articles!
 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

See above for interview and applications commentary!

 

Quest 15: Get myself going
We went on two walks - 3.3 miles on Friday and 3.1 miles on Saturday - for a current total of 6.4 miles completed. 

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23 hours ago, Tova the Vibrant said:

That's super awesome news about the interview!! I agree - they don't move that fast on calling if they are hesitant! ::excited noises::

Thanks! So my interview was yesterday and I got both good and bad news:


The good news is that the principal seemed super on board with me! I got several "that was a good answer" comments, we had some side conversation at the end of the interview, he made a comment about how he was definitely going to be calling my principal for reference this week, etc. etc. Assuming my principal doesn't decide to talk some shit (which...seems slightly unlikely but not impossible, especially considering how many other schools have ghosted me after good interviews), I think I'm at least halfway in! And they're every inch as wonderful as I remember from being a student there - I haven't felt that relaxed and supported in years, and this was an interview! Interviews are stressful and judgmental! God, even if I don't get this spot for some reason, I have got to figure out a way to get a job here, no question about it.


Bad news...it's not a "real" position yet. Or rather, it is, but they don't know how many openings they have or when they'll be available. They have 21 assistants and their contracts for next school year aren't due yet. He's assuming some of them will certainly leave, but can't say exactly how many or when - they technically have until July 15th to make their decision. To compare, my district requires me to give notice by May 30th. (It would cost me $2500 to break contract after that, but no worries, the principal at the awesome school has already assured me they keep a separate budget to buy people out of their contracts in those kinds of cases.) So I'm facing down a wait of up to 3 months instead of the standard 1-3 weeks. Ugh!

 

The second question is then the baby #2 question...if I stay, we're hoping I can get pregnant sometime between now and the end of September so the baby would be born next spring, before I tried to interview again and jump after my next contract. Anytime after that, I might as well give up and just resign myself to being in my current district for a third year. If I leave, we're not going to start trying until September so the baby will be born in June or later, when I would become eligible for FMLA leave. So there's only two months of overlap that's entirely "safe" (since I would know about the awesome school by the end of July, meaning we'd have August and September to try for a spring 2020 baby). And there's not exactly great odds of getting pregnant in the exact two months you want to! Right now we're leaning towards trying seriously in May still (this is the job I know I have, the other one is still only just a vague possibility, also there's a bit of a joke about how getting pregnant now basically guarantees I'll get the new job hahaha) but...we'll see. We have a good bit of time to chat about it thanks to where I am in my monthly cycle at least.

 

Official countdowns:
23 school days left
49 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge update!!

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (5/7 days)
It didn't get cleaned off yesterday...oops? 

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (5/7 days)
Missed Sunday, but got it yesterday.

 

Quest 8: Do my 5 manicures (3 done)

So I did my interview manicure for the interview (duh), and then afterwards when I was picking up my son from daycare, I broke a nail against my car door (ouch!) and just decided to change it up entirely. So even though my interview manicure was just done on Sunday night, I did a new one last night too. This one is...I'd say it's like a light olive green color with a lot of teeny tiny green and gold flakes. (Picture below is not mine, but stolen from the Internet)

 717161161_harpsinthehaze.jpg.e50bb38c32cbb39a0566e740fb8380c5.jpg 

 

Quest 11: Summer shoes (COMPLETE)

Calling this done! I wore the wedges again to work yesterday (I still taught in the morning and I didn't want to wear my interview stilettos all day) and while my pinky toe is still getting a little red, I did wear them a majority of the day and was fine. A bandaid might help protect from the red for a bit while the shoes are breaking in. Now I just need to put my sandals to a more proper test, but wedges = 1 pair of summer shoes! Check!

 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

See above for interview and applications commentary!

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Official countdowns:
22 school days left
48 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 1: Combine shelving in 2nd bedroom
3rd shelf cleared! 2 more...but these two are the most full. Thankfully, those two shelves are all children's books, so I don't have to find spots in the rest of the house for them necessarily. It might help a little if I find a good spot in the room for them? Maybe?

 

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (6/8 days)
Re-cleaned it off last night, woohoo!

 

Quest 4: Defeat the sugar demon!
I haven't actually done any dessert-less days so far, but man I'm struggling with this one lately. I'm fighting just to make it to 1:30, much less the entire day. Wednesdays are terrible days for me, just schedule-wise, and stress/emotional eating is by far my biggest issue...but I'm really super going to dig deep and try for day 1 today. Cheer me on? Please? Psychic high fives and pats on the back are always welcome :)

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (6/8 days)
Done!

 

Quest 9: Clear out box in the master bedroom

I...kinda started? I got 4 things out of the box before my husband came home with my son and he (the baby!) of course immediately needed me in the living room to watch his favorite music show with him, but that's 4 things more than I had before that. Hopefully it's not cheating if I just threw 2 of those things into the laundry to try after a wash...I'd have to wash them regardless of if I was donating or keeping them, right? One was a cardigan which wasn't exactly super stylish but I might end up keeping it because I'm always cold and maybe it can work until something better comes along. The other was just a green t-shirt but who knows, maybe it'll fit well or maybe it'll end up in the alterations pile. (Side note: I think I need to put the purple t-shirt I'm wearing today into the alterations pile actually...much like I expect that green shirt to be, it's a bit shorter than I'd like and just kinda shapeless and boring. But I like the colors of both of them, so they might be worth cutting into.)
 

Quest 13: Maintain job applications

Final decision made last night - we're officially trying for baby #2 and I will only apply to either super high-flying schools or French positions from here on out :D 

 

Quest 14: Family trip prep (1 busy book page started, 3 months photo backup done)
Whew, finally backed up October pictures last night! Yeah! That officially brings me to the 3 month goal, but I feel like getting 2018 done is soooo close, so that's what I'm going to expand my goal to - 5 months to cover all of 2018 (at minimum, hopefully that'll be fast and easy and I can start including 2019 - I know I need more space on my phone for the Mexico pictures than I currently have!)

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Just found out I got passed over for the one French position I thought I had a really good chance at. I mean, I knew that was coming - the principal has been refusing to return my phone calls for 3 weeks now - but damn, that hurts more than I really want to admit. It actually would have been easier if they'd just continued ghosting me, hahaha. But I will not turn to chocolate to ease my suffering...sugar won't help me feel better...I can do this all by myself with the help of dessert...*deep breath*

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1 hour ago, Tova the Vibrant said:

Sorry about the job.

Resist the desserts! Make a cup of tea instead (or your non-caloric drink of choice)

 

Thanks :) Normally I would drink more coffee - which I normally doctor up with plenty of milk and sugar but will drink black when on cup #2 or more so it doesn't become a sugar/calorie bomb all the time - but I also don't want to drink it too late in the day, so I went with picking the nuts and raisins out of a trail mix on my drive home and then indulging in Chinese take-out for dinner. Which is admittedly still a lot of sugar, but it's not a dessert, so...progress? I even had to turn down clearance Easter candy while out on a shopping run and my favorite dessert ever, chocolate chip cookie dough, that my husband was going to make me as a sweet but slightly misguided attempt to make me feel better. But I MADE IT! No desserts yesterday at all, I'm so freaking proud of myself :D I might be struggling with most other things in life right now, but at least I got that one check in the "win" column.

 

Official countdowns:
21 school days left
47 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (7/9 days)
There's actually a little more on the coffee table now, but it's all stuff that can be said to belong there (like we finally bought more Kleenex), so I'm still calling it clean for now until I find a better spot for those things.

 

Quest 4: Defeat the sugar demon! (1 day complete)
See above - I managed not to eat any dessert yesterday!!! Whew!

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (7/9 days)
Done!

 

Quest 10: (Find and) dye the Portugal dress
I bought some dye last night, but the color on the bottle looks a lot lighter than I wanted, so I'm going to look up their website (the bottle says they have a lot of "recipes" there) and see if I should maybe buy a second color to mix together or something.

 

Also, I didn't make it a quest this time around but my grad school semester ends on Sunday night and I have been super productive this morning on it so far! We had three essays to turn in and I got 2 of them finished and in this morning. Now I just need to massively put my head down and work on that third one, which is supposed to be submitted for professional publication later...I can only miss 3 points on it to keep my 4.0 in the class overall, so I **really** want to do super well!!! (No, I haven't missed that many points so far. There's only 100 points in the class at all and I have to stay at or above a 94% to keep a 4.0. I've missed 3 points so far, which gives me a maximum of 3 more before I hit a 3.5 overall. Though one of those essays I turned in this morning might help, because part of it was editing a prior paper and I should hopefully get maybe a point or even two back...)

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20 minutes ago, kcaleece said:

There's only 100 points in the class at all and I have to stay at or above a 94% to keep a 4.0. I've missed 3 points so far, which gives me a maximum of 3 more before I hit a 3.5 overall.

oh no lol GIF by Late Night with Seth Meyers
Holy smokes!

Get after it! You got it!

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20 hours ago, Tova the Vibrant said:

Holy smokes!

Get after it! You got it!

Thanks :D I'm just worried about keeping all my hard work up, you know? With only 100 points in class and 22 of them coming from the final paper (it's supposed to be for professional publication, or at least submission for such a publication, but we have basically no guidance either which is a pain), I'm definitely a little worried. There are 5 sections (abstract, introduction, reading, listening, bimodal input) and I've finished the draft of the first 3...kinda. My abstract is impressively terrible, my introduction is the only one that's fully done, and the reading section needs to be a little more fleshed out but it's largely finished. And I haven't decided if I need a conclusion or not, but...maybe? We'll have to see when I get there.

 

Official countdowns:
20 school days left
46 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (8/10 days)
I had to put my son's dirty socks in my hamper last night so I didn't wake him up, hahaha, but the coffee table was cleaned up again last night!

 

Quest 4: Defeat the sugar demon! (2 days complete)
TWO DAYS in a row!!! Yeah!!! Yesterday I took a majority of the day off to work on grad school, which massively lowered my stress levels. That plus contract night (where I had to be at work until about 7pm for school events) meant it was easy to get checkmark #2 for this quest.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (8/10 days)
Done!

 

Quest 14: Family trip prep
I haven't worked on the busy book for a long time due to grad school, but after several hours of work all day my brain was fried so I got a little tiny bit of sewing done last night. Two out of three (probably, might be four) dirt patches done for the ground :)

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Official countdowns:
19 school days left
43 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (10/12 days)
It's getting a little more messy, to be honest, but my husband's happy with it so I'm happy with it!

 

Quest 4: Defeat the sugar demon! (3 days complete)
Woohoo, I got a third day yesterday! I'm kinda proud of myself, honestly - it was a super tough working weekend with my grad school semester ending yesterday. A little tiny bit of me is kicking myself that I could have pushed through on Saturday...I ended up eating like 4 bites of a dessert late that night that I easily could have skipped. But oh well, what's done is done and there's plenty of challenge left to find 4 more days :) 

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (10/12 days)
Done and done.

 

Quest 12: Spanish

I wrote 125 words of a "journal entry" on Lang-8, which is...an okay website. It's honestly not great, but sometimes it's nice just so you don't feel so much like you're writing to no one for no purpose.

 

Quest 15: Get myself going
We went on another walk (2 miles) for a current total of 8.4 miles completed. 
I have failed to do any other kind of workout yet though, sigh.

 

Grad School - semester ended yesterday!! I'm fairly content with my final paper. It's 17 pages and about 5500 words. I'm sure it could be improved upon, but I think I did a pretty good job, especially considering I honestly started it on Thursday and it was due yesterday night. Now I'm waiting on my professor to give me her notes - as long as I don't miss more than 4 points, I'll keep my 4.0 in her class (the highest grade possible in this program, basically equivalent to a 94%+) - then I'll revise it again and submit for my first potential professional publication! Woohoo! *crosses her fingers*

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Holy cow! I had given up on getting any more job interviews this season but I just got called in to a fantastic district (and actually the one we live in!) to do a screening interview on Thursday! Whew!!! Cross your fingers for me - there may be hope yet!
(This also means I'll have to be a little more careful about the manicure I was planning on doing tonight, damnit, but that's a small and temporary problem - if this job works out, it would ten thousand percent be worth everything!)

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Official countdowns:
18 school days left
42 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (10/13 days)
Yeah, I tried to clean it off last night but it was definitely still a little bit cluttered when we went to bed.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (11/13 days)
Done!

 

Quest 8: Do my 5 manicures (3 done)

Next one got started last night, but it's not quite finished. It'll probably be a slowly growing one, honestly - I did the base color last night, but it still needs top coat later today. It's a cream and I don't tend to be super into creams by themselves (they're just the one solid color, pretty but super minimal) but it'll be good for the interview. Afterwards I'm debating trying a fun topper over it or maybe stamping something pretty?

 

Quest 12: Spanish (1,600 words reading; 260 words writing)

Another 135 words of writing yesterday for 260 words total so far.

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YAY! It's May Day!!! Happy Spring everyone!!

 

spring.gif.bfe2954fc628380f1a0aaa3b0836f2fd.gif

 

Official countdowns:
17 school days left
41 days left until we go to Mexico

 

Challenge updates:

Quest 2: Keep coffee table clean (11/14 days)
I think my husband cleaned it off last night actually? It was cleaner than I thought it was, honestly.

 

Quest 3: Decide on next big project
This might end up being a two-parter: shore up the garden wall my husband just built two weekends ago and replace our kitchen door to the backyard. Both lost to yesterday's thunderstorms (which, to be fair, were pretty severe - there was a lot of flash flooding in the area). The garden wall clearly wasn't anchored deep enough - the water just pushed up under it and flopped it on its side. And the back kitchen door...well, when I came home to a "flooded" kitchen (in this case meaning a trail of water about half an inch deep, about three feet wide, and stretching to about 10 feet from the door, not super damaging but not much fun either), I managed to spot it leaking in from the deadbolt, the doorknob, and the two lowest corners of the window. To be slightly fair to the door, it clearly wasn't installed super well (it's visibly crooked in the frame) but I didn't spot any water coming in from the frame, so I'm hoping it's just a matter of replacing the door itself and trying to install it straight this time hahaha.

 

Quest 7: Personal care task (11/14 days)

Nope. Oops.

 

Quest 8: Do my 5 manicures (3 done)

I actually failed at getting my top coat on yesterday. Oops again? I swear, I've been trying to remember...I know I did a bunch of good, useful stuff last night and I genuinely can't remember what it was.

 

Quest 12: Spanish (1,600 words reading; 390 words writing)

Another 130 words of writing yesterday! I'm getting pretty decent at my tiny daily journal type things on Lang-8. 

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On 4/29/2019 at 8:10 AM, kcaleece said:

Grad School - semester ended yesterday!! I'm fairly content with my final paper. It's 17 pages and about 5500 words. I'm sure it could be improved upon, but I think I did a pretty good job, especially considering I honestly started it on Thursday and it was due yesterday night. Now I'm waiting on my professor to give me her notes - as long as I don't miss more than 4 points, I'll keep my 4.0 in her class (the highest grade possible in this program, basically equivalent to a 94%+) - then I'll revise it again and submit for my first potential professional publication! Woohoo! *crosses her fingers*

WOOOOOOOOOOO!

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