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Archive for February, 2007

Life IS ironic!

February 28th, 2007 at 02:34 pm

...because of my performance during the workshop, the Director of logistics has requested my resume and asked my boss (VP) whether he had ever thought of recommending me for a higher position in the company...

Oh, well, it is nice to be wanted!

So many b-day parties...and all boys!

February 28th, 2007 at 02:33 pm

I like to keep a stock of toys for b-days Ale might get invited to....but, lately she's had lots...and all boys!...so, I have about 4-6 toys for girls which I CAN'T use!...so I need to buy some toys for boys...(I ran out of the "unisex" ones a long time ago!...mostly puzzles, building blocks, coloring books...)

((sigh)) time to go downtown again!

The workshop

February 24th, 2007 at 11:29 am

The workshop was very interesting...for one thing, I realized just how much effort is put into the procure to payment process at the company....and I also learned just how badly I mess things up for other people when I try to speed up things for my unit...oops!....

At the very beginning of the workshop my boss (VP) told the whole group that hierarchies (sp?) had to be put aside for this workshop and not to dismiss anyone´s input...(this was directed to our Logistics Director, who, naturally, is the designated leader of this project, because she tends to do that...she´ll only listen to people with titles of Director or above!)...anyway...we went through the workshop and, when we finally agreed on what the new process would be, we were supposed to present our case to a senior panel (CFO, VP of contrallory and VP of strategic development)...Most of us volunteered to present, and I ended up in charge of explaining our Current Si tuation map....as I was taught at school: forget the fancy language, keep it flowing, make occasional eye-contact and try to read body language to see if you should explain or if your audience is "buying"....it went pretty well...my bosses (Director and Manager) even congratulated me...that was nice!...I also presented the Expected Benefit on the final day of the workshop and, again, they said very impressed...now, for some strange reason, the part I DIDN´t like was when A (manager) said to me that they were amazed at the value that i had added to the workshop and the clarity of thought that I exhibited....so, I´ve been working with them for the past 3 years and they never noticed that before???...I´m trying to think it´s only that our day to day doesn´t really showcase it as well as a structured workshop might!...

Oh, well, in the end, I got praised and, even if I end up leaving the company, I can see the results of this workshop and its implementation as my "legacy" to the company! (they asked me to run a pilot test in our area, starting March 1st!)

$100 for the $20 challenge in Feb

February 24th, 2007 at 11:17 am

just jotting it down so I don´t forget!

I'm The One!

February 21st, 2007 at 07:05 pm

the good news is: I'm the chosen candidate for the open position!!! yay!....


the bad news is: they take my current salary, without the $120/month bonus, as the basis for their salary negotioation!!... me no like!

Oh, well, I guess I have to wait until I hear from them again - if I ever make it out of the Ac celerated Improve ment W orkshop...we seem to be working from 8 through 6:30 every day...and, just to give you an idea, our morning break today was at 11:50am....and lunch was served at 1:00pm!)...more on that tomorrow, as it has been a very interesting experience and definetely worth blogging about!

dream job!

February 17th, 2007 at 04:49 pm

Ale told me yesterday that she wants her first job to be at a pupuseria...nanny has taught her how to make pupusas and, today Ale taught ME! (no, I had never done it before!)...she then asked me if the people that make pupusas make good money...I told her not the employees, but, maybe the restaurant owners...there´s a lady here that´s famous because she started selling on the side of the road and now has 3 or large restaurants, and they´re ALWAYS packed!

checking references!!

February 16th, 2007 at 01:07 pm

my boss got a phone call, as did one of my good friends (with whom I've also worked!)...YAY!!

"free" lunch all next week!

February 16th, 2007 at 06:59 am

I'm supposed to be attending a workshop for that accelerated improvement thing next week, and, they just sent an email informing that lunch will be provided...yay!..that'll save me about $1.50-$5.00!...let[s say $1.50, which is the minimum I would save, bringing my lunch from home every day but buying $0.30 beverages!)...Now, the reason I'm writing free in quotations is this:

"modo que evitemos largas interrupciones y podamos aprovechar mejor el tiempo como equipo. La hora del almuerzo y los breaks siempre será flexible dependiendo del progreso alcanzado y la opinión del grupo"

(so as to avoid long interruptions and so we can make better use of our time as a team. Lunch and break schedules will be flexible depending on our progress for the day and the group's opinion)

I think I better pack some migraine pills!

The Interview!

February 14th, 2007 at 10:45 am

I meant to post about it yesterday, but, by the time I was done with the interview and the English class at our "adopted" school it was already 1:45pm and, I was supposed to leave the office at 2:00 to go to the Decameron for the training logistics thing...

I feel the interview went rather well...we laughed a lot and I think they got a good impression...
First they asked me if we could speak in English and if I were to rate my English would I say it was good?...they asked me about my past work experience, why I wanted to leave my current position...I think the clincher was when they asked me "what about creative problem-solving?" I just told them, well, modesty aside, people come to me and they say: I want to ask this from you because I know that if you don't have it, you'll know where to get it and, if you cannot get it, you'll make something up and find a way to substitute it...(which is true!)...

And, as I said, we did laugh a lot together, so they know I'm fun to be with!...I feel that I really connected with all 4 interviewers, and that I would be a great fit for this office...it's just a matter of them deciding whether I am the right candidate for the position and, of determining whether "the price is right"....considering not only salary, but also additional benefits, of course!

they mentioned that the office will be small and that somedays there will only be boring tasks...--I just spent half a week making photocopies! Every job has "its moments"--...

We'll see...I keep trusting that G-d will know what is best for me and either keep me here or send me somewhere else, accordingly! ....

OK, I'm officially nervous now!

February 13th, 2007 at 08:18 am

it's 10:18 am and I'm supposed to leave at 10:45am for my interview!!!!!

Are you poor?

February 12th, 2007 at 01:24 pm

The question took me completely by surprise!...I was just paying Ale's school and, since it was already 3:00pm, I popped in to say "Hi!" to her...and one of her classmates just shot it: Ar you poor?...No, why?...Alejandra said you were....Oh? well, we may not have money for luxuries but we sure aren't poor...

I guess I need to have a talk with Ale about this....I mean, how did she get this distorted view? we live in a small house in the wealthiest municipality in the country (true, it's not ours, it's a rental, and we share a household, but, still!)...we have a car, we have a nanny...and, while we don't have money to splurge, Ale can't exactly complain of NOT having "stuff"...as a matter of fact, she's the one that gets the most "stuff" at home...

I don't know, maybe kids have been talking about trips and cable and ipods and Xboxes???....I know for a fact that there are 3 kids in her class that have cellphones (?!...why would one give a cell phone to a 6 year old??!!)...and I know most of them have cable...Ale has also been asking whether only parents are allowed to have TV's in their rooms or whether some children have TV's of their own...Again, even if I HAD the money, I doubt it I'd want Ale to have her own "dumb box" in her room...

old friends...and new clothes

February 11th, 2007 at 09:40 am

my sister´s best friend´s mom is here for a visit...after 26 years!...we three sat in our living room yesterday afternoon and just chatted and chatted and chatted...of love, life, death and everything in between...it´s funny because she remembers us as children, and we remember her as "a grown up" and, at this stage of our lives, we are just "women" and I guess we understand each other a lot better than we ever did!...

She brought as all presents...a nice outfit for Ale, a pencil case for her pencils, and a watch....

some outfits for sis (I still haven´t seen them) and niece and, even some for me! ...so now I have two new blouses that fit perfectly and pants, which I need to fix (not surprising, sis and I are always doing this, becuase we are short, all our pants have to be adjusted!)...they´re nice leisure clothes...which is an extra luxury for me!

$80 for the $20 challenge in February

February 11th, 2007 at 09:31 am

...still, I´m $25 short to make it to next payday (Feb 15!)....I think I can collect that from here to Tuesday!...we´ll see!

changes in ES tax forms!

February 9th, 2007 at 11:54 am

I just read the news this morning, ES tax forms have changed!...rats! ....just when I was starting to understand the old ones!...oh, well, I hope the changes are for the best and will make things easier!... (I already printed the explanation off the local newspaper site!)...in the meantime, I cannot even start thinking about doing my taxes because the company hasn't given us our tax retention letters... Frown

I forwarded the news to our payroll dept!...(it was during our lunch break, so it should be OK!) :P

called for interview!!!

February 9th, 2007 at 08:42 am

I just got a call from the Embas-sy...I'm excited!...the only problem is I need someone to take over my English class at the school we have adopted....need to go look at the schedule...
I'm also supposed to go to the training which is at a resort 2 hours away from the city, but, as long as I'm there before 6pm, there will be no problem!...

wish me luck!

Have to buy lunch today....

February 9th, 2007 at 06:35 am

the lasagna nanny made yesterday was such a hit, there were no leftovers!!!...and, there were only enough leftovers from day before yesterday to pack 1 lunch: Ale's... that means I have to buy my lunch today....unless there's a Work Unit lunch and somebody decides to invite me, but, I'm not counting on it!...oh, well, I'll try to keep it as close to $2 as possible!

2 sisters - how can they be so different!

February 8th, 2007 at 07:28 am

yes, I know, we are all individuals and that means we ARE all different...however, the mentalities of nanny's daughters really baffles me!...

Daughter #1 - the eldest who just graduated from high school has gotten a job at a bookstore...it pays minimum wage ($175) + commissions (so, now I will have to switch from buying at the branch in mall X to mall Y, but that's ok, they're both close to my office!)...anyway, she wants the money to pay for her university, as she wants to become an engineer....

Daughter #2 - the one that had a baby at 14...is currently going to night school to get her high school diploma...working as a maid, making $30/week...she wanted my cousin to take a credit line (in cousin's name) so that she (Daughter #2) can get a 25" or 27" TV...never mind that the family already owns a 17" TV, but has no refrigerator...

Now, nanny herself would never even think about asking me to get a credit line in my name to buy something for herself...at most, she asks me for small "loans (rather, advancements on her payment, which I discount in smaller amounts...she never asks for more than $50 and, I discount it by $5/week, for example)...

Now, I know that having gone through High school instead of quitting after 9th grade - the way she originally wanted - changed Daughter #1's outlook on life and of her own potential, but, still...you'd think having a baby would have made Daughter #2 more responsible with money...

I'm really looking forward to seeing how Daughter #3 will turn out! (she's 12!)

Valentine's present for Ale

February 7th, 2007 at 11:40 am

I want to make her something nice for Valentine's...she always makes me nice presents, just because, and I thought it would be nice to give her something, as I know she's not expecting it! ...

Wholewheat pasta

February 7th, 2007 at 11:04 am

finally! one of our local brands has started producing wholewheat pasta!...only spaghetti so far, but it's a start!...before, you could only get it imported (= EXPENSIVE!!!)...now you can get it at prices only slightly higher than normal! ...I bought a pack, and convinced the family of at least giving it a try!!...Ale liked it, sis and niece still haven't tried it!

Not from the piggy bank, right??

February 6th, 2007 at 01:22 pm

Ale is so funny!...she brought home the proofs for her school pictures...here's a collage I made:

She obviously wants the group picture, too--which I haven't seen...the package costs $15, and it includes 1- 8X10 individual, 1- 8X10 group, 2 wallet and 4 passport size pictures....we chose the picture we like best (we liked the same one!)...and I said to her: ok, right now I don't have the money, and I have to see where I'm going to get it from, but, don't worry, we'll find it...(meaning re-allocate it from somewhere else)...she looked at me very anxiously and said: but, not from my piggy bank, right??...LOL!...I love it!

The test

February 6th, 2007 at 11:16 am

it went as expected...it's not a difficult test for me and, I've done it before!...the great news is there were only 4 of us and noone from the Embas-sy, so that means there's no "inside" competition!!!....they should be calling us for interviews either by the end of this week or early next week...
we'll see how this goes!

Ale lost a tooth!

February 5th, 2007 at 03:49 pm

literally!...it fell off and she didn't even notice, so she was crying this morning because Raton Perez wasn't going to give her $$$ if she coulnd't produce a tooth!....

I told her I'd try to get a hold of Raton Perez and explain the situation...we've had this happen before and RAton Perez did leave her some money...just not as much as he does when there's a tooth in his box!

$56 from school supplies at flea market!

February 5th, 2007 at 09:02 am

we made $56, which means we have the $$$ to buy the tubs of glue we need (we had each already contributed $20 for the paper and 12 tubs of glue), cover the entrance fee ($3) and still had enough left to buy $2 cards for our cellphones...not a bad deal!...Ale bought a plush bunny and, afterwards, when we went to the supermarket, she bought a book and a set of 24 colored pencils...

$16K for Telethon

February 3rd, 2007 at 08:24 pm

...through numerous initiatives and fierce competition, the company employees were able to raise over $16K for the Telethon...the owner matched our $$$ 2X1...so total from the company will be almost $50K...of course, thanks to the PR fairies, the employees' donation was the first one of the event, so it got a special mention in the press!...

Still, it IS a good cause and, they HAVE built new centers not only in the capital city but also in some of the other major cities....

$0.02 and another financial lesson for Ale

February 3rd, 2007 at 08:19 pm

she got money from a friend of mine ($50)..she kept $10 at home ($5 for herself, $5 for charities) and we went to deposit the other $40....when we checked her bank book, we noticed her $16.40 deposited in July have since turned into $0.02...so I explained to her that this was the interest that the bank had paid her for keeping the money there...

Oh! and Raton Perez is due back for a visit tonight...she lost another tooth! (he´s leaving her $0.85)

English test!

February 2nd, 2007 at 11:01 am

at the Embassy (again!)...they throw out all candidate's files after 6 months...

this is for an admin assistant position...

Let's hope noone from the Embassy is applying for this position, as they (logically) tend to give priority to their own people!....

The test is next Tuesday....keep your fingers crossed!

We counted our colored pencils yesterday....

February 2nd, 2007 at 08:26 am

Ale counted her colored pencils yesterday night, to make sure she still has 12 and hasn't lost any...LOL!...she did this on her own, without my asking her to!!...

flea market - school supplies

February 2nd, 2007 at 07:46 am

well, we are going to take our last notebooks (about 50-75) to the flea market...they have already been stored for over a year (from past Jan 06 to this January 07) and who knows if they'll survive another year in good enough condition to be sold...we are also taking a boxful of stickers, and the returned glue...I'm going to be taking some old books to see if they sell and we are also taking some sandwiches....Ale has declared that she will NOT bring any toys this time...wish us luck!

unexpected expense!

February 1st, 2007 at 03:18 pm

UGH! the school didn't accept the generic white glue...they want X brand-name...the one we bought was $1.28/tin...the one they want is $2.75/tin....now, this is just white carpenter's glue and,it's being used for kids crafts...

anyway, we need to bring the replacements between today and tomorrow, which means there's no time to sell the ones we have first...which means WE have to shell out the money and then find a way to recover at least part of it!...rats!...plus, the profit on most of those school packages was about $10-$15....with this, it goes down by $1.47 per package (for preschool packages)...$8.53-$13.53....

I'm not a happy camper today!...

productivity

February 1st, 2007 at 01:10 pm

once again we are trying to determine how productive we all are...once again I have been asked to submit how many hours I spend doing what...for this week it seemed kind of low... and I actually wrote 2 hours for photocopying...well, guess what? Yesterday I got BOMBARDED with requests for photocopying!....I spent a total of 6 hours of my day just making copies, punching holes and putting them in folders!...there goes my monthly quota! (almost!) LOL!...you never know what's going to hit you each day when you're an admin assistant!


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