Trying to fit in having a life when I can (#workingretailduringtheholidays).

Hey Everyone!

Have I mentioned that life is crazy at the moment? I feel like basically all I do is eat, sleep, work, shower and do laundry. It’s pretty much all I am doing at the moment.

That being said, I am trying to squeeze in having a life. While it isn’t much, just doing something for myself, for my sanity and mental health. Whether it is going on a date, or going to my favorite bakery and picking up a couple cupcakes after work on a friday followed by walking along the street taking pictures of the murals on the sides of the buildings.

I used to work up in this area, several years ago, which is how I knew about all these murals. The area this is in is a designated “Arts District”.

I honestly love the urban artwork, and it makes me want to go explore other places with these murals on buildings.

This is the time of year when you have your people who believe that retail should be closed on Thanksgiving, and then those who don’t care and / or think it should. While the company I work for is closed on Thanksgiving, I am in the camp where I argue that retail stores can do whatever they want to do. When someone chooses to go into Retail / Food Service and Other Customer Service based jobs (among other industries), getting holidays off is not always going to happen. Giving up holidays is something one must be willing to accept if you go into these industries. For many, working holidays means much needed pay to try to make ends meet, and keep food on the table. For others it’s just the nature of the industry and where you are on the seniority ladder and the staffing needs for the day. If you don’t want to shop on Thanksgiving then don’t shop, If you don’t want to work on Thanksgiving then don’t get a job in an industry where you may have to, I respect others choices not to shop or work in an industry where the employees have to work on holidays. I also don’t want them forcing their choice on me, whether I (or others) want to work or shop on Thanksgiving (or any holiday for that matter). Is it nice to have a day off? Yes, it is. If I had to choose between a day off (aka losing a day’s pay) or working extra / normally scheduled hours and have a better paycheck, at this point in my life the paycheck is the choice I would make. There are other factors that go into why some people want to work on holidays, and they are well within their right to do so.

For Me, having time with family doesn’t and shouldn’t be dictated to me at the cost of losing pay, when I can make time for family on my regularly scheduled days off and other times of the year when work is not in the peak season. I don’t a specific date on the calendar to show my friends and family I care about them. Sometimes the random, spur of the moment, spontaneous acts of kindness are the best.

This Season, I have really learned how to be able to laugh off certain situations and get on with it, since stressing out or letting it get to you, only hurts you and has a more negative effect on your mental and physical health. I am not saying you should laugh everything off, since there are more serious issues that need to be dealt with head on. It’s more of the minor stuff, like a mess was made or you forgot to do something that didn’t have serious consequences that you could correct easily or do better the next time, or something happened and it is what it is, and being able to find the humor in the situation.


The Holiday Rush is Starting.

Hey Everyone!

The last few weeks have been crazy busy.

This week, I have been sick for most of the week. So I have been pushing through being sick and working as many hours as I am offered.

I picked up an extra shift at a different store last night, since they needed extra help. This was the third store I have worked a shift at this season. I still love my home store, yet I also enjoy working shifts at different stores, and working with their crews.

While I am not a morning person, my normal shifts at work are ideal, I start early, and got off as the store opens.

This time of year is the craziest time of year when you work retail. It seems like my life is basically all eating, sleeping, and working. Trying to have a life as well can be a challenge, but I am trying. I managed to fit in a date yesterday before having to go to work. We had met up for coffee.

We had met up at a coffee shop I am familiar with, from when I worked in the area. It has kind of a old hunting lodge type theme to its decor, which is one of the things I liked about it. It is also very Portland.

The tea I had ordered, showed up while I was at work yesterday. Stash Tea, is my standby for tea. Even though Stash is local, one of the things I like about ordering it online is that there are 10 more tea bags per box. The more you buy of a particular kind (like English Breakfast Tea), the price per teabag goes down.

Halloween Update

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I have been enjoying my second day off of work today.

I am not at all surprised that I am this tired. Early mornings and hard work.

This job has been helping me learn a lot about myself. It has reminded me how much I prefer jobs where I work with my hands and am not stuck in an office all day. Technology is great, I just like not being glued to a computer screen all day. I like to be out doing things, or in the kitchen making things, as well as the human interaction aspect of things.

I have definitely found that I love “work clothes”, over dressy clothes, and I prefer the kinds of work where the more rugged and sturdy work clothes are normal. Beings that I prefer to be outdoors, and working hard.

Earlier this month, we had a couple of weeks of unseasonably sunny and warm weather, which happens occasionally. Now we are back to our usual cold, wet autumnal weather.

It is catching up with me

Hey Everyone!

This week has been pretty busy. I worked some extra hours this week. The week before last was the craziest.

With the exception of the 40 hour week I worked a couple weeks ago, this week was wore me out. I took an hour long nap yesterday and took a two hour nap today, which is crazy. I was just thinking back to last year when I had worked the same number of hours / days, and yeah, I was this tired. I can handle two days in a row of my job just fine. Three or more in a row is what gets me.

I also feel like I have been constantly hungry too, and that all I really want all day is to be eating food.

Part of why I have been trying to take naps, as well as drink more water is because I don’t want to get sick. Not getting enough sleep, and letting yourself get so run down is a recipe for getting sick. Getting up between 3:15 and 4:15 am each day has been a bit touch since I am not a morning person. At the same time it has been nice to be off of work before noon.

Today has been rainy, cool and grey. It made taking a nap so much easier and better. It is easier to sleep during the day when it’s like it has been today. When it is sunny, it is harder to sleep because it is bright. There is something about the darker days that tricks your brain to make falling asleep easier.

Family Beach Day

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Last week flew by, this weekend was good, and other than an early start to my morning today went good.

Yesterday, my family and I went to the beach. We headed out to the north coast, Cannon Beach and Rockaway Beach (and the small towns in between). Cannon Beach and Seaside are my least favorite coastal towns, as they have lost their small coastal town vibes that I like, and that many beach towns here in Oregon still have. There is this bakery in Cannon Beach that has been around since the 1930’s. We stopped in, and I was surprised that they had a raisin spice muffin that was dairy free. A lot of bakeries like that don’t have dairy free options. It was nice that I could get a treat too. While I am an adult, and have been dairy free for the better part of 7 years, it does suck sometimes when everyone else can enjoy a treat and I have to abstain. In between wandering around Cannon Beach for a bit and coming back to Cannon Beach for dinner, we went down to Rockaway to go for a walk on the beach.

While it was nice in Cannon Beach, it was foggy in Rockaway.

We had walked to the jetty before turning around.

We had gone back to Cannon Beach for dinner, and tried someplace new. They had several items that could be made vegan, which is a go to for me, to make sure it is dairy free. Normally I do eat meat.

We got back to town in enough time for me to shower and go to bed since I had to be up early (3:15 am kind of early) for work.

After we got home, I realized I had gotten a little sunburned, which was crazy, since it is autumn, where we were actually walking on the beach was foggy, and I had applied SPF 70 sunblock before leaving home.

My morning at work went well. I am not a morning person, but once I am up and going (granted I get enough sleep), I actually like the schedule I have. I still sleep at night when it is day, and awake during the day. I also still have my late morning and afternoons free. That is a plus.

Getting a chuckle out of it

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Friday afternoon I had finally heard back from one of the interviews I went on back in August (seven and a half weeks after my interview), that they had gone with someone else. I still haven’t heard back from the first cost plus world market I think interviewed at for the season (9 weeks since my interview).

I knew I hadn’t gotten either of them the day I had interviewed for them. I have done enough retail job interviews to know that it’s rare to get the job if you walk out of the interview without at least a tentative job offer.

I found the whole email to let me know they went with someone else 7.5 weeks after the interview, and 3 weeks after I started my current job (and 5 weeks post interview for said job that I walked out of with a tentative job offer) to be down right hilarious. There is no reason to get angry and bent out of shape about it, especially now that I am working somewhere else. I have great coworkers, a great supervisor and great GM. I have the privilege to be working with some amazing people. If I were working at either of the other two places I interviewed for prior to where I work now, I doubt I would be having the same experience I am now.

I might also be finding that email hilarious because of how hard I have been working this past week.

The Day Everyone Was Zombies

Hey Everyone!

This work week is finally over (at least for me anyway).

By yesterday morning everybody who had been working all week was done. You could tell we were all exhausted, and that the week was wearing on us. I feel bad for the two GM’s who have been putting in over 60 hours of work, and are on day 6 or 7 without a day off. You could tell everyone was tired, and that they had reached their limits.

This morning on my way to work I got caught by a speed trap as I was passing a oil truck after putzing behind him for a ways. It was smelly and slow and taking to long after a stop light, so I sped up to get around it, and bam, the flashes went off and there I was. Note to self in the future: take a different route to and from work. This is the city. There are plenty of other ways to get there without taking the freeway.

There is a bath and body works across the little side road, in the same shopping complex as where I work. I got an email while I was at work that their aroma therapy stuff was 50% off. After I got off work, I stopped there and got a bottle of the stress relief body wash and the body cream as well as the almond scented body wash and a container of pumpkin cupcake hand soap.

I stopped and got myself a large soy hazelnut latte from Dutch Bros on my way home before running my other errands.

I also stopped at Target and Fred Meyer to pick up stuff like laundry detergent, icy hot for my achy joints and muscles, my favorite lotion, shampoo, conditioner, tea, and fruit snacks.

Having enough Gas to get me through to payday has been a real stressor the past couple of weeks. Beings that I got paid, I was able to put gas in my car.

Since I have been home, I took a nice hot shower, I used my new stress relief body wash. I also applied the icy hot after my shower and a little bit of the stress relief body cream.

I had some lunch, and now I am just relaxing while I have a load of laundry going. I was so hot and sweaty when I got home, everything needed a bath.

It will be nice to do some knitting as well as being able to catch up on on vlogs and shows I have been missing.

I have been missing being out living in a small town, with wide open spaces.

The craziest schedule

Hey Everyone!

Today is Thursday, right?

This week has been crazy. My work schedule has been all over the place, which means my sleeping schedule has been all over the place.

Monday was great since I had gotten off early enough in the morning that it was still dark when I went to bed, and was a cold, grey, dark kind of day which was great for sleeping. Tuesday, I also got off early enough that I could fall asleep before the sun came up.

Yesterday, was the craziest day of them all. I had started at 1:30 am, got off at 10 am, and then went and saw my mom before I came home. By the time I got home and showered, and went to bed it was after noon. Yesterday was sunny, and even if I had gone straight home it was daylight so going to bed about 11 or after noon didn’t make much difference. I slept a few hours and then had to be at work again at 9:30 last night. That was the craziest, the quick turnaround between the two shifts.

That brings me up to right now, Thursday afternoon, about four and having just woken up for the day after going to bed this morning.

So here I am, still exhausted, ready for this week to be over, yet still having one shift to go before that happens. Fortunately I will have had roughly 20 hours between when my last shift ended and the next one actually starts when all is said and done instead of 11.5 hours and starting my next shift the same day I got off the last night one.

Tomorrow is gonna be good. It’s payday and then it is also the weekend. For now though I need to do some laundry, make some tea and get some food before getting some more sleep before I go back to work.

Good Daytime Sleeping Weather

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I am still trying to wake up. I worked last night, so I slept today. Thank goodness today has been cool, grey and rainy. That made sleeping during the day easier.

I have work again tonight. We are getting ready for Christmas, and setting up our holiday shops.

This evening I had opened my window, and could tell someone was having a fire, as I could smell it in the air. I love these rainy autumn days where it is cool enough for people to be having fires. I do love this time of year.

I have really been missing living in a small town in the middle of nowhere lately. Especially evenings like this where it is rainy, cool and there is a hint of smoke in the air. I loved the lighter traffic, and small town vibes.

Greek Fest Weekend

Hey Everyone!

It’s Greek Fest Weekend here in beautiful, rainy, Portland, Oregon!

It has become a tradition that my family and I go to Greek Fest each year.

I got a couple of gyros, a sausage and some loukoumades (honey covered doughnut hole type dessert). The food is so good.

Yesterday my brother came back from his week long vacation to Hawaii.

Saturday is also a typical errand running day.

Tonight I have work, and have work the rest of the week as well. So life is getting busier these days.

In between eating, sleeping and working I am also trying to be getting as much knitting as I can done. I am trying get as many pairs of socks done while it is cold and wet so when next summer rolls around, there will be socks to be washed and blocked.