It has been an interesting 2011 so far. At the end of 2010, my company was acquired by a much larger financial company. The majority of my colleagues were kept while a lot of the management was let go due to redundancies. After a few months it became apparent that most of my colleagues (myself included) were no longer happy with our new roles at the new company. I started looking at other opportunities just to see what else is out there. I was not expecting much to happen due to my minimal experience in my industry as well as my lack of coding/programming skills. To my surprise, the job market is a lot better than I expected. I received a bunch of replies.
As the company morale at the new company deteriorated drastically (many personnel changes/departures), I decided that I didn’t want to stay for the ride. I was used my LinkedIn skills and found a college classmate who had bunch of mutual contacts as me. Lucky for me, I was able to contact him even though were weren’t “friends”. It turns out I had just applied for a QA position with his company so I reached out to him just to verify if the position was even available. I believe that a lot of company career websites are not kept updated and after applying online, where exactly does my resume go? I didn’t expect this contact to reply any time soon, but within a week he did and invited me in for an interview the NEXT day with the Director of QA.
The interview went well and they had an offer letter ready for me in less than a week! It was pretty amazing just how quickly they moved. I start this new position on Monday (6/20) after having 19 days off. It’s the first time in my short career where I’ve had time in between jobs. It’s been really great. I went home to visit my parents and sister in Long Island. I reverted to my suburban life and visited my childhood mall. I even purchased a nice Coach bag as a celebratory gift to myself. I guess it could be a super early birthday gift!
I then visited my wonderful and supportive boyfriend in Tampa. We had a great time. He even took me to the batting cages so I could attempt to hit balls. He is my witness that I made contact with more than 50% of the balls. Too bad my super soft hands get blisters so easily. We dined at the Refinery after I read how they were nominated for the James Beard Award. They use local ingredients and therefore their menu changes on a weekly basis. We had a really good meal there. Jeff ordered the hanger steak as his entree and I got the pork ribs. So yummy! We shared a chocolate cupcake with bacon frosting. It was a lot better than I expected. I’m not a big fan of salty and sweet desserts so I was hesitant in ordering the dessert. However, our friendly waiter informed us that he tried it that morning (it was the first day of the new menu) and that it wasn’t too sweet and really good. I’m glad I took a chance!
When I returned from Tampa, I went straight to a NKOTBSB concert with my college friend. It was pretty fantastic. She is a huge BSB fan and I used to follow NKOTB when I was really little. I think the only reason I was a “fan” was because my older sister and cousin were huge fans. I just copied whatever they did. My first ever concert at the tender age of 8 was a NKOTB concert! I had the NKOTB sheets and outfits. It was pretty ridiculous! We even visited the members’ homes in Worcester, MA. I think my favorite NKOTB song was “Step By Step” and they performed it at the end of the set. Yay! For the rest of the week, I’ve been going to Bar Method (my latest gym obsession), FlyWheel (hit my highest total power!), doctor and dentist. I can’t believe it’s Friday already! I made pizza and cookies. Now I’m watching some trashy TV. What a great night!
Lastly, I am really excited for the last Harry Potter movie. Who wants to see it with me? My boyfriend is hoping someone is kind enough to see it with him so he doesn’t need to!
Wow, I can’t believe it’s officially 2011. I have had a great holiday with my family and boyfriend. I went back to Long Island for Christmas to spend some time with my family. When I arrived at my parents’ house, I noticed that there was a pumpkin on the counter. Immediately, I thought about my mom’s famous pumpkin muffins. I asked her if we could make these muffins as I haven’t had them in years. She told me that they require a lot of work including grating the pumpkin. On the first night of vacation, I peeled the pumpkin. Then my mom and I grated the pumpkins. The next day we pumped out 102 muffins. It took a lot of work, but it was definitely worth it. I don’t know when I’ll be making these muffins again because pumpkins are quite difficult to peel and grate.
I’ve decided with all my recent baking of cookies and muffins, I’m interested in buying a hand mixer and a mini food processor. I made some jam thumbprint cookies for work and they were a bit of a failure as the dough was way too dry even though I had used three sticks of butter. I’d like to think a hand mixer would be helpful in this kind of situation. My ultimate kitchen appliance would be a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer. I plan on getting one once I have a real place with a full-sized kitchen.
My boyfriend just visited over the weekend. He brought along many wonderful gifts. I hinted about a Coach wallet to J and of course he was listening! I was totally surprised that he also got me a North Face fleece with a hoodie. I’ve been thinking about getting this fleece by myself, but now I don’t need to! Jeff and I watched three movies during the extended weekend: Black Swan, The Fighter and True Grit. As expected, Black Swan was really intense, dark and crazy. I enjoyed it though. It was a bit graphic to see just how much ballerinas go through. The toe shots were a bit too much for me! The Fighter was really good and I believed that Christian Bale was really crazy and a crack addict like his character. Mark Wahlberg was also really good in his role as Micky Ward. I love inspirational based on a true story movies (The Blindside). It’s really heart-warming and gives me hope. True Grit, was a John Wayne remake. I have never seen a Western movie before this one. It was actually quite entertaining and exciting. I had trouble understanding Jeff Bridges’ cowboy accent, but I guess that was on purpose. Matt Damon was pretty hilarious with his character. All in all, it was a great movie weekend. I hope the next time I’m in Tampa, we’ll be able to watch The King’s Speech with Colin Firth.
I’m really going to try to update my personal blog more often. Hopefully, I’ll have things to write about. I also have been updating my food blog.
It’s the first full week of September and it already feels like Fall. It’s kind of depressing to think that just a week ago I was wearing sleeveless tops and skirts without a jacket. Today I’m wearing a half length sleeved top along with a jacket! I want my summer back. Before I know it it’ll be winter yet again and I’ll be back to my boring winter clothes where everything is gray, black or brown.
I do have something to look forward to in the midst of all this sadness. My boyfriend will be arriving in NYC in less than a week. We will go to ALL his favorite places to celebrate his birthday! There will be sushi, pizza, cupcakes, shabu shabu, falafel, etc. Of course we will watch at least one movie, specifically “The Town” starring Ben Affleck, Jon Hamm (from “Mad Men”) and Jeremy Renner (from “The Hurt Locker”). I’m really excited to see it! Ben has been picking much better movies to direct or act in. Also, in less than a month, we’ll be traveling to Taiwan together for the first time. I’ll be going on a diet before my trip so I can eat all my favorite foods without feeling too guilty. Plus, maybe this will prevent my family friends from commenting on how “fat” I am. I’ve learned to accept that I’m considered obese in Taipei. I do love coming back to America (Land of the Fatties) after a trip to Asia. I feel tiny next to these mammoth Americans. I guess it helps with my self-confidence after being told I’m a XL or even XXL in Taiwan.