Sunday, February 2, 2014

Taking advantage

Almost a year ago, I changed jobs. I know. Shocker. I'm well aware I have a tendency to job hop. I get bored easily, what can I say? However, being chewed out by my boss for being introverted was the catalyst that made me change this time. And it just so happened that the physical therapy place I was working for before I quit working to finish school was hiring again for the same position I worked before. I was able to leave the ambulance service and start at the PT place with no break in pay checks. I got back in the swing of things fairly well. 


Now, the PT clinic is corporately owned. And they have some stupid policies, as most corporations do. Most places have a probation period before employees can get on health insurance. I understand why. It's to protect against employees like me, job hoppers. So I do get why places have 30 day probation periods. I even understand the 90 day probation periods. 

The PT clinic has a probation period of one year. I do not understand why. Also, it does not apply to licensed people like the PT's and PTA's. They are able to get on the insurance immediately. So only the receptionists and techs get this ridiculous probationary period. 

Which leads me to the purpose of this post. Why do companies treat the people on the front lines the worst? I used to work retail before getting into healthcare, and I worked as cashier, stock person, and shift manager. And over and over I noticed that the front line people, cashiers, routinely get paid the least, receive the least amount of benefits, and don't get as many raises as the 'behind the scenes' people. It makes no sense. A cashier is usually the first person a customer sees and the last person a customer deals with. And cashiers do see the injustice. Almost all I've ever worked with were unhappy with being treated as the lowest person in the system. That's why some companies have such a high turnover of cashiers.  

Now, in the PT clinic, obviously things are different. I know that the physical therapist is what makes the clinic good. Ultimately, she will make or break the place. But, again, my face is the first and last one a patient sees. And if I'm unhappy, the patient notices. And when the patient notices, for some reason they just don't try as hard in therapy. It's like unhappiness is contagious. And it's not just me. A receptionist at another of our clinics has worked here for 8 years. I mentioned that it must be a good company to work for. Her response: her coworkers were nice, but the company sucks. She feels it doesn't care for its employees. It doesn't even care about helping patients. It just cares about money.

I know some companies are trying to change this. Some have discovered the secret to making more money: happy employees. And I just really wish my PT clinic could understand that.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

30 Day Blog - Day 23

Things have happened in my life recently, but I don't want to get into it all right now. I'm just going to jump right in with 30 Day Blog.

Day 23- What makes you different from everyone else.

While I believe everyone is unique, I also believe that the vast majority of us are a lot alike. Many of us have the same hopes and dreams in life, and most people are just generally good people. So this thing, it took some serious thought to figure out.

I guess what makes me different is the placement of my scars and my little body imperfections. You see, I have moles. Quite a lot of them. One day I will have the money for plastic surgery so I can at least get them off my face (because no amount of makeup will cover them), but right now, they are what makes me different. I'm not saying that I analyze every face I see, but I don't really think I have ever seen anyone with the amount of moles on their face as I do. I am horribly insecure about them, but only when I think about them. Which isn't very often. I shouldn't be insecure, though, because they really do give my face more character and definition than most other people. I also get complimented on being pretty sometimes, so either people don't notice them or they don't care.

And that's all I got for today. As I said, things have happened, and I am just so mentally drained right now that just writing that short amount was difficult. Maybe when I get around to Day 24 I'll have more to say.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Homemade Lenovo Tablet or Kindle Fire Case

For my birthday last year, I got a Lenovo Tablet A1. Its a cute little tablet that fits my needs perfectly. Its fast, has plenty of memory, and is great for browsing the internet. My mother has a Kindle Fire, and they look almost exactly the same.

I've been wanting to get a case for it, but most of the cases I like are usually $30+. And I'm not willing to pay that much unless it is the perfect case. I got the idea in my head last night to just make a case, though.

I've had a journal for a long time that I picked up at a thrift store awhile back. The outside looks like an actual book, but the pages are edged in gold. I've never really had a use for journals; I bought it on a whim, because it was like $5. I decided to use that for a cover.

I googled some, and came across a few tutorials. I gathered hot glue, a cereal box, some fabric, and some elastic. I cut out the pages of the journal and put them with the rest of my craft supplies; maybe one day I will find a use for them. I cut apart a cereal box until I had a shape that was slightly smaller than the journal, then covered it in my fabric by hot gluing the fabric down. I then cut four elastic pieces and hot glued them to my fabric covered cereal box. Finally, I hot glued the whole thing down onto the inside of my journal. Here's the finished product.




The cover doesn't want to stay flat that much right now, and we had that gold elastic ribbon laying around, so I figured it would work for keeping it closed. Turned out pretty good, I think. The elastic isn't as tight as I want it to be, but its keeping the tablet in pretty tight, and I figure by the time the elastic wears out, I'll be ready to spend some money on another case.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Dinner Tonight: Pecan Pie Muffins

Tonight, I made Pecan Pie Muffins. So I guess this is really a Dessert Tonight, rather than Dinner Tonight. The recipe is at the bottom. I didn't have enough pecans on hand, so I halved the recipe.

First, gather your ingredients. Pecans, flour, butter, eggs, and brown sugar.


Next preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare your muffin pan. The recipe I used said to grease your muffin pan a lot, but I don't like a lot of clean up, and I'm lazy. So I just used paper muffin cups.


Now, combine your brown sugar, flour, and pecans.


In a separate bowl, blend the eggs and butter.


Then, combine the dry ingredients with the butter/egg mixture.


Fill your muffin cups 2/3 of the way. I didn't fill them up that much, so I ended up getting 9 muffins out of this recipe.


Then put them in the oven for 15-17 minutes.


Once you take the pan out, if you didn't use paper muffin cups, use a knife to pop them out of the pan.

Now, enjoy.


Yum yum. These taste great. They didn't really have a muffin type texture, but it was still delicious. And they came out of the paper muffin cups just fine, as you can see.

Pecan Pie Muffins
makes 12

Ingredients

1 cup packed light brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 cups chopped pecans
2/3 cup butter, softened
2 eggs, beaten

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease mini or regular muffin cups generously, or line with paper muffin cups. Grease them well or they will stick. In medium bowl, stir together brown sugar, flour, and pecans. In a separate bowl, beat the butter and eggs together. Stir in dry ingredients just until combined.Spoon batter into muffin cups about 2/3 full. Bake for 12-13 minutes for mini muffins or 15-17 minutes for regular size muffins. Run a knife around the edge of each muffin and pop it out.

30 Day Blog - Day 22

Remember how I was complaining about my job and whatnot in my last post? Well, I quit. I put in my two weeks notice, and my last day was Friday. Almost immediately after putting in my two weeks notice, my anxiety level went way, way down. I could suddenly sleep again! Color and beauty returned to the world. I started reading and doing my favorite activities again. And my awful headaches that radiated into my teeth? The tooth pain that made me think I must need to have my wisdom teeth removed, finally? Went away completely.

Yes, I am still stressed. I have no job. My husband makes just enough for us to pay our essential bills (rent, utilities, food). But my anxiety level now is nothing, nothing compared to the anxiety I was feeling while still working there. And its also nothing like my anxiety and depression I had last year when I couldn't find a job after graduating. Its like this time, I just know things are going to work out. Maybe now I have more faith in God's plan, or more faith in myself. Or maybe I just don't give a damn about doing things the 'right way' now. You know, doing what society says. Having a big paying job, buying a big house, driving a new car. I also found an article about a couple in Maine who live off of $17000 a year, renting a house for the same amount that we rent ours. Joe makes more than that, so I know that it can be done. The plan at the moment is for me to find a job, even if its part time, so we can continue to pay off my student loans and our credit cards. We hope to be credit card free by the time I'm 30, 35 at the absolute latest. Joe is looking into changing his major and going back to school for Electrical Engineering.

So, now I have all this free time. And since this time I'm not horribly depressed, I have energy and can focus. I'll probably be gardening more, going out more, exercising more and just generally living more. This free time will also allow me to experiment with recipes and such. Tonight I'll be doing just that, so be looking for a cooking post.

Anyway. I've been doing all this rambling because today's 30 Day Blog post doesn't require many words.

Day 22- Share a picture from your day.






These trees are everywhere in my town, and they are all blooming right now. Earlier, I went to pay our water bill, and this tree was outside the building. I parked under this tree, and when I came back outside from paying, the wind was blowing, so all these little white blossoms where swirling around me. It was absolutely beautiful being in the middle of a sky full of them, so I took a picture of the tree to remind myself of the experience.

Monday, February 18, 2013

30 Day Blog - Day 21

Time once again for some more of the 30 day blog. Today is Day 21 in the 30 day blog challenge. Starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel, here.

Day 21- If you had 3 wishes, what would they be.

I'm going to go ahead and assume that I can't wish for more wishes, because these 3 wishes things always have messed up rules like that.

I'm going to be perfectly honest with these wishes. I could always wish for silly stuff, like a new car, a boat, a huge house, that sort of thing. But those are all just things, and lately I've been in a bit of a funk, so my wishes are probably going to be boring and about improving quality of life and blah blah blah.

Wish number 1, I don't even have to think about. I wish my husband could find a job that he enjoys, pays well, and that gives him a sort of pride when people ask him what he does. He has always had to make due with the sort of jobs that some other people consider to be "low class." But he's a fantastic worker. He works hard, does a great job, and is extremely smart. But no one will give him a chance in this messed up economy. Heck, even with my degree and insurance/medical office experience, I can't even catch a break.

Which leads me to wish number 2. I wish I could find a new job that I enjoy, pays enough to pay my bills, and is at the same time at my husband's so we can have some time together (we currently work at different times so we really don't see each other except for on the weekend). Remember the job I have? The medical coding job that I absolutely love? I don't love it anymore, and because I really don't want to get into it all again, here's why.

Wish number 3 ... is a tough one. Wishes number 1 and 2 would probably be enough for my husband and I to be reasonably happy. I guess I should use my last wish for something big that benefits a lot of people, like I should wish the economy would do better, that more jobs were around, that companies would take more chances and hire people, that the price of gas would go down and stay down.

But I'm going to be a little selfish. For wish number 3, I wish there was a way for my husband and I to be able to spend as much time with his family as we do my family. I feel guilty sometimes that I have some much time to be around my family, because we live in the same town as them, but we can't afford to go see his family even once a year for a holiday. That's part of the reason why we're looking for jobs out where his family is; I think he deserves to have some time with them, as an adult, like I've had with my family.

So, I guess that's it. I'll try to pick up with the picture challenge as well. Maybe I can keep up with my posting more this year.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Dinner Tonight: Homemade Chicken Pasta

This will probably be short.

Tonight I wanted to make something that was fast and easy for dinner. I also like making things that have very few ingredients. So, tonight I decided to make some homemade chicken pasta with a spin on it. It only involved 3 main ingredients, and it was delicious.

First, I got some water boiling for some 3 cheese ravioli. While that was cooking, I heated up two Tyson Grilled and Ready chicken breast fillets. If you haven't had these things, they are amazing and such a time saver. They are already seasoned with a bit of soy sauce, so they are great to just throw in a bag and have for lunch at work, but the taste isn't so overpowering that they can't be used with other recipes. Finally, I poured a jar of alfredo sauce into a pan, but I waited to start heating it until everything else was done. Once the chicken and the ravioli were done, I sliced the chicken up, then threw it all into the pan with the alfredo sauce. Heated it all through, then spooned the finished product into bowls.

I chose to put some mozzarella and parmesan cheese on top of it all, as well as some cajun seasoning. Joe and I love the cajun chicken pasta at places like Chili's, and the finished product was just about as close to that as possible.

Yum. 
So there you go. Quick, delicious, and if I totaled up the cost of it, probably cheap.