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Archive for June, 2007

More vacation!

June 22nd, 2007 at 03:27 pm

We went out to a japanese steakhouse for dinner... it was my friend's birthday. We also spent some time in the mall and BF bought a fun hat... enjoy!


Hot Pocket wasn't actually angry, he was in the middle of a yawn... but still cuddling with my mouse.


hehe.


hahahahahaha. BF is so silly.


All of us at the Japanese Steakhouse


Awww.

Today we have a pool party, and then on to Branson for Malts... woo!

Day 1 of my vacation

June 21st, 2007 at 06:58 pm

So we took on the journey, and made it to Springfield, Missouri. Our travels went without a hitch. We managed to pick up a tree on our way (a bonsai tree) that we're now carting to California and back... haha. We couldn't resist, he was just the happiest, giggliest little Japanese man in all of Springfield, Ohio... Smile Here are a few pics, including the pretty Missouri sky...


Ki-Chan, our Bonsai tree.


hehe.


No free candy? heh.






Our friend's cat, Hot Pocket, playing with my yarn.


I crocheted this mouse for Hot Pocket.


...and he LIKES it!!

hehehe.

One last post before my Vacation!!!

June 20th, 2007 at 04:12 am

This will be my last post until I'm on vacation. We leave tomorrow, bright and early! I'm so excited! By this time tomorrow, I'll be in Springfield Missouri visiting friends! The first stop of our roadtrip!!! yay! I ended up saving $617 to get me through vacation. I mailed my bills today and I'm finishing up the packing as we speak. Have to pack lunch and dinner for tomorrow, then hit the road after a good night's sleep. I'm going to be doing my best as far as keeping track of my expenses goes. I'm sure I'll make many posts (most likely with pictures!) throughout the next 2 weeks. Later everyone!!!

Re-sorting my work schedule.

June 19th, 2007 at 01:07 pm

Last night at work we were expecting a rather large party of 25 people. Usually on mondays we only have 2 servers in and one of my coworkers takes the hosting position so my boss can have the day off. Because of this party, my boss came in and all 3 of us worked as servers. They called in and said they wouldn't be coming (I think it was more of a misunderstanding than a calling-off, but that's a different story). Thus, we were over-staffed.

My boss said he would go home, and we could resume our usual posts, but then my coworker that was going to host took another table! This kind of sucks for me and my other coworker (read: his girlfriend), considering we were supposed to take all the other tables (the host gets paid more than the usual $2.85 or whatever it is us servers get paid hourly). As you can imagine, my other coworker, this guy's girlfriend (a really great girl, I love her to death) was a bit upset. It seems her BF is kind of a jerk when it comes to money-making and the like and gets angry with her anytime she makes more money than him. I'd kick the guy to the curb, but thier relationship is really none of my business, though I know the interest points in the relationship and they're pretty dim (ladies, if you stay with a guy 'cause you think he's gonna get you a green card, you need to re-evaluate the situation).

At any rate, my boss wanted me to work this morning, anticipating a busy lunch shift, so I told him I'd come in if I could go home early last night. It was very slow in the restaurant, and I needed to pack and clean and whatnot. Besides, it worked out better for my coworkers because the one wouldn't be a sly cheat (my boss would stay and they would both remain servers for tne night).

It really bothers me how dishonest our one server is. He has a bad habit of taking tables he knows tip good because they are "his regular customers." Dont get me wrong, this kid has worked at the restaurant for 5 or so years, he's gonna have people requesting him. He does, however, take tables when people dont even ask, which is not cool on his part. It messes the schedule up and he does it for his own monetary gain. He's also withheld cash in our tip-out, which goes to the bus people and chefs. There are times I've thought about it (particularly when the bus boys stand around and do nothing), but I never once have. I just dont find it morally right to break the restaurant's rules and cheat other people out of money. Ugh. They would never fire this guy though, because he's been at the restaurant for so long and does his job so well.

I guess the man at the table is a bit better than the man behind the scenes.

On a happy note, however, I'm leeeeeeaving!!! Tomorrow!!! hehehe.

I got everything on my to-do list done yesterday, save getting stamps. I'll be getting a couple from my boss today, though, and mailing my bills. Oh, and I had wonderful luck at Macy's returning my gifts. The jewelry Gram bought for me ended up being much pricier than I had thought, so I exchanged it for another necklace I liked a bit better, earrings that had a little more pizzaz, and a really cute wallet that holds checkbook and all.

I looked at shoes for nearly an hour and they either had nothing in my size, or I didn't like it. My sandals are about to bite the dust, and I'm looking for something a bit more casual, but still cute. No luck whatsoever. We went to KMart to find me a duffle bag, and it seemed the shoe-fairy was shining down on me. I found 2 pairs there that were very cute and comfy. Slight heel to both, but comfy enough to where I think I can live with it. Oh, and they were buy one get one half off! woo!

Aaaaallllmost reeeaaaaady!!!! One more day of work! Wish me luck!

To Do List... Vacation's almost here!!!

June 18th, 2007 at 02:15 pm

1. Go to Macy's and exchange the gifts Gram bought me (She gave me very serious permission in case I dont care for the jewelry she bought).

2. Make up a shopping list for vacation (about done).

3. Pick up perscription.

4. Buy stamps and mail bills.

5. Go to the bank (this is a biggie!)

6. Go to KMart/Walmart for a duffle bag and/or picnic basket.

7. Go to the grocery store.

8. Clean out fridge.

9. Clean the apartment.

I'm going to save taking the trash out for tomorrow, in case something sneaks its way in. So much to do!!! I cant believe we're leaving on wednesday! Well, better get crackin!

Hefty electric bill... :(

June 18th, 2007 at 03:32 am

So with all of this talk of lowering my electric bill... it came out even higher this month. Of course this pro-active behavior came about pretty late in the billing month, but still. It was $97.81 Frown

I was surprised, to say the least. Granted, it's been hotter than it was last month, and the AC was on for a good portion of the month. It will NOT, however, be on for the majority of this month. Of course, we'll be gone for 2 weeks as well, and that should help it a bit.

Regardless, I'm limiting my computer time, trying to shut all lights off when possible, and leaving that AC off!

It was another slow night at work, despite it being Father's day. I'm trying to finish all things on my to-do list before we leave on wednesday. It seems being gone for 2 weeks takes a lot of preparation! Tomorrow brings a run to the bank, the paying of all bills, a bit of grocery shopping and picking up my perscription. Also a trip to KMart to look for a duffle bag. BF wants to buy a fan in lieu of our not using the air conditioning. I'm not sure if it's entirely necessary, though. I'll decide when I see the pricetag...

At any rate, I should get going. I need to turn this computer off! hehe. So much electricity... If only I could turn the fridge off when I wasn't looking through it... hehe.

Testament of willpower, anyone?

June 17th, 2007 at 02:17 am

So for the second night in a row BF is not in town, which means I get a ride home from a coworker. Also, for the second night in a row I've had an hour or two to kill waiting for my coworker to get finished up. I'm not complaining about my coworker, I've just been flat out bored. Not only that, but very tempted to go get drinks/food at nearby restaurants in the mean time. Quite a testament of willpower, if I say so myself. I've even refrained from buying drinks at my own restaurant.

Tonight's plan? Saving Advice. hehe. Still waiting, deciding what I want to do when I get home. Unlike yesterday, I am not dog-tired. I dont, however, want to go out. I spent $1.75 for the bus, and $2.69 for subway before work (though honestly, that's the cheapest subway I've ever gotten. Thank goodness for grand openings!). I would have just eaten at home, but my bus left at 2:30 and I had to be at work at 4:00. I have to eat before I work, or my blood sugar gets low, but 2:30 is just too early for me to eat anything resembling dinner. I went to Subway, and they had a special: if I bought the largest drink, I get my 6-in. sub for $0.99. Not bad, and I even got them to switch the drink for a cookie (I get pop free at work). Woo!

I think perhaps I'll go home and play videogames. I've been avoiding anything that uses electricity lately, trying to shrink my bill, but I can budge for the night Smile Besides, there's no daylight to keep me outside. Have a good night, everyone!

Looooong day and future vacation plans (?)

June 16th, 2007 at 05:19 am

I doubled today, though it seems it was scarcely worth it. We had 2 servers in today for lunch, and we both made about $10. I guess money is money, however. We were slow for dinner as well. I made about $65 for the day. erg.

The up-side of this equation is that it was a no-spend day. My boss also bought my coworker and I Starbucks and yummy tiramisu from the Italian restaurant nearby. Mmm. I spent most of the day learning more japanese from my coworkers.

Which brings me to my next topic... vacation NEXT year. I know it's silly to think about, with this year's coming up on wednesday (eek!). However, a trip overseas is nothing to do last-minute, so I think a year in advance is just fine to start planning. So here it is:

Japan.

It makes me excited just thinking about it, but I'm more than certain that we can do a fairly decent priced 2 week vacation in Japan next summer. I have quite a few connections, just working where I work. We wouldn't have to pay any money for lodging, as everyone I work with has family there, and they all assured me that thier relatives would be delighted to let me stay. One of my coworkers has even talked of going with us, which would be great. I wont get into TOO much detail now, however. Dont want to steal any thunder from my up-coming roadtrip Big Grin

As for frugal acts of the day... 1. I finished off my leftover soup for breakfast. 2. I had a no-spend day. 3. I didn't buy a beer after work, tempted as I was. That saved me $4 in itself.

My boss said it wouldn't be necessary to work lunch tomorrow, so I get to sleep in. Woo! I go in at 4:00. I hope it gets busier! I'd like to make at least another $100 before I leave for vacation (if not more!).

At any rate, tsukareta desu. Atsukare sama deshita! (I'm tired, until tomorrow!)

Bah! I did it again!

June 15th, 2007 at 02:19 pm

I'm going to at least partially blame BF for it though. Yesterday he had his car in the detail shop to get the windows tinted (something about making the airconditioner work less while we're driving across the country). He had nothing to do, so asked me to meet him downtown. I figured, okay, I needed to get my hair cut anyway. We ate subway, I got my hair cut, took the trolley to the area where he was getting his car done, went to Bed, Bath, and Beyond to pick up a bottle opener (ours vanished sometime during the move). I ended up getting loaf pan and somehow we managed to NOT buy trash bags, though we can only buy them there and have been out for about a week. Ugh.

Regardless, I spent $17 on food I shouldn't have. I should have just stayed at home all day and eaten here. We certainly have enough food. On top of it all we ate out the night before. I spent enough at restaurants/food courts in two days to get me groceries for two weeks! BF tells me not to beat myself up over it, but if I dont, who will? I didn't mind going out for our anniversary, but spending that much on mall food and subway seems silly when I have all that food at home. Perhaps this beating up of myself will keep me from doing it again anytime soon.

Erg, well, I have a double to day. Wish me luck!

Day off over, now back to work

June 14th, 2007 at 02:31 pm

Last night BF and I ended up going out to dinner after all. We went to a nice small Japanese place (similar to where I work). First we stopped at the Exchange, and sold a couple of things. We also picked up a copy of "Spanglish." Very cute, I would recommend it to anyone.

Dinner was good and I was left with a TON of leftovers, so I consider it a good deal. Besides, it was our anniversary, we wanted to go out to celebrate. Lucky for us, this place doesn't have a liquor license, so no booze to tempt us. I drank water with lemon SmileThe cash we got selling the couple things we had covered about $20 of dinner. That was nice.

After dinner we stopped at the beer distributor. BF is going back to Ohio this weekend and wanted to stock up. We ended up drinking a 4th of what we bought last night though (and we bought 48 bottles! Sheesh!). At any rate, that was another $15.

Now that the anniversary is over, however, it's back to minimal spending and max-saving. I've got enough leftovers to eat for weeks. hehe. I work tonight and double tomorrow and saturday. Let's hope I make some money!

With all this talk about electric bills lately, I've been thinking about mine quite a bit. Our bill was $74 last month. I live in a 1-bedroom apartment, this seems a bit much to me. So recently I've been shutting off the AC, opening the windows, and shutting off all the lights. It's been 2 days like this, and I have to say I enjoy it. BF is a tough nut to crack, but he hasn't tried to turn the AC on once. I'm so proud Smile He's even been turning lights off when I tell him to instead of arguing. On top of all that, I've been shutting my computer off when I'm not using it. Cant say the same for BF, but when I'm done here, I'll shut it off for him (he's got my laptop out and about today).

My electric company has some really nice tips on how to save on my electricity, so I'm hoping some of them work. It just seems silly to pay so much for such a small place (though it is 800 sq.ft.). Wish me luck!

p.s. it's a no-spend day. Woo!

Not-so-busy-day

June 13th, 2007 at 04:15 pm

So I'm making dinner tonight, and otherwise just making myself pretty. BF and I were thinking of doing something tonight in celebration, but we're at a loss of things to do. There really are no movies out that we want to see enough to pay for. Perhaps we'll go buy a movie from the exchange or something. That would be nice, and much more cost efficient than going to the movies. More cozy as well... at any rate, I'll figure SOMETHING out. He gets home at about 5:00. I want to have dinner ready about then.

Other than that, here are some pics. Enjoy!


The card I bought BF at the Tokyo store.


A close up of the Sumo wrestlers.


The table he put it on. Next to our bamboo, asian playing card set, a picture of us from Christmas, and the box I decorated for him for our 1 month anniversary Smile


The yarn I'm using to make my friend's scarf... a surprise I've been recently working on.


The granny squares I've constructed thus far (for the scarf)... they're coming along!

Anniversary and the Tokyo Store

June 13th, 2007 at 03:14 am

I doubled today, and in between shifts, a coworker of mine and myself went to the Tokyo Store (i.e. Japanese grocery store). I had never been there, and it's probably good I dont go back for a long time. haha. I ended up spending $34 total. $13 of it was spent on a greeting card for BF. Read: Beautiful. I didn't even write on it, I wrote my message on a scrap peice of paper and taped it to the plastic the card was in. haha. BF and I love Japanese decoration of all kinds, dishes, etc. He liked it quite a bit. It was set with a fan that had sumo wrestlers painted on it. I'll have to post a pic here soon. I also picked him up some Pockey (a favorite japanese snack) and some other little odds and ends. For me, I picked up an Ogura Mocchi cake (a small rice cake filled with sweet beans, for those who are unfamiliar) and a kid's magazine. I'm trying to learn a bit more Japanese, and not only was it adorable, but it was educational as well. And imported, so it was $10. Totally worth it, though, in my opinion.

So I spent $34, but part of it was gift-purchases. I've been doing good, I'm not going to beat myself up over it. As for tomorrow, I'll be making dinner and perhaps surprising BF with oatmeal cookies. I haven't decided on that one, as I got him sweets already and he's trying to lose some weight Smile Nonetheless, I plan on celebrating in some way! I'll figure it out between now and tomorrow evening. He goes to school for a bit tomorrow, I'll have time to plan!

At any rate, I can hardly believe it's been 2 years already! It seems so much shorter and so much longer than that all at the same time. I guess that's a good thing? hehe. Nonetheless, I think he's sticking around! Not that he has any choice in the matter... Wink Have a good night, everyone!

p.s. Vacation savings up to $442 already! Not bad...

A surprise birthday check from Grandma!

June 12th, 2007 at 04:19 am

I got a birthday card in the mail from my Grandma (complete with insurance cards... mom must have mailed it for her! She's been meaning to get those to me). And in it was a $15 check. Every little bit helps! Actually, it just about covered the parking money I gave to BF ($5) and my get-together with classmate. I spent $8 total- $2.39 for fries (Mmm), $2.50 for beer (Penn Pilsner. Mmm again), and a couple dollars for tip. By no means a no-spend day, but it was entirely worth it.

I made decent money today with the big party that came in. We're expecting the rest of the week to be busy as well. I hope we're right.

Oh! Other news: My anniversary is tomorrow (or I guess today, it is after midnight...)! 2 years BF and I have been together. Woo! And still going strong (a snag here and there, but hey, I love the kid. What can I say?). We're not really doing anything, as I have to work a double. I'll be gone all day. I guess that's cheaper anyway. I've got wednesday off, and I'm planning on making a nice dinner. We'll have to celebrate then. Perhaps I'll do something nice for him while he's at class. I could make him oatmeal cookies. He likes those quite a bit... Smile We'll see... at any rate, everyone have a good night!

Cooking, cooking, cooking :)

June 11th, 2007 at 02:48 pm

So I'm still attempting to eat all in my fridge without wasting or throwing anything out. I'm eating my stirfry for breakfast (yes, as BF would agree with you, anything very not-breakfasty for breakfast may not be orthodox, and to some slightly gross. It's all food to me, though, so I'll do it anyways. hehe). I still have enough for one meal, though.

I got a call yesterday from a classmate of mine I havent seen, well, since the semester ended. I was so excited to have heard from someone from school (once summer came about, it seems we all lose touch), and I'll be doing an early dinner with her pre-work at Primanti's (bar and grill, fantastic sandwiches). I'm alotting $15 including tip, for a sandwich and a beer. On second thought, I might just get a basket of fries. That'll knock the price down a couple bucks, I'll just eat something small before I go. I know I said I wasn't going to go out to eat until vacation, but I consider this more of an entertainment expense than a restaurant expense because I'm spending time with a friend.

Sooo. I'll be making White Bean and Sausage Soup with Peppers for lunch and saving the leftovers. This is another silver palate recipe, though I'll be doing some substitutes. I have a bag of mixed beans that I've had since before we moved. For some reason, I haven't found a recipe to try with them, so I figured to substitute the mixed beans for the white beans. It wont be the prettiest of colors, I'm sure (you puree the soup before adding the sausage and peppers), but I'm sure it will taste just fine.

Well, that's about it for today. I'll cook, I'll go to the bank downtown, and get dinner with my friend before work. Then work. We have a party of 35 coming in tonight, so it's going to be a busy night. Yay US open. Cross your fingers I earn some moo-lah!

It's gonna be a long week...

June 10th, 2007 at 03:37 pm

Work last night was busy and a bit of a letdown. Sometimes just being a waitress is enough. It's not even the money, but the drop in morale one gets when they work thier butt off, and still end up with the bare minimum in tips. Why does anyone ever tip 10% if they are completely satisfied with the service?? Especially if it's a table of 7 very demanding people who see to it to interrupt one another every chance they get while a poor girl is trying to write down who wants what sushi and hey that guy over there changed his mind six times! Frown I usually dont complain about my tips, ever, but there are just times that you wonder if you did something wrong. At any rate, enough of that rant.

I expect the rest of the week to be just as crazy, if not more so.

I went to the asian grocery store and trader joe's yesterday, to pick up the last few things needed for recipes I have planned for the week. Ended up spending $45 (I'm so bad at keeping on grocery budget, but at least I'm not eating at restaurants this week). I shouldn't have to shop again before vacation, however.

I did make a frugal choice or two last night. I took snacks to work to avoid a trip to the vending machine. I also decided against going to the bar after work (something I seemed to desparately want to do), and opted for a beer at home, in front of my laptop. I made a menu list for the rest of the week, and if I stick to it, I dont think anything will go bad in my fridge before I leave for vacation on the 20th.

Today I'll be cooking stir-fry, as I have bean sprouts and snap peas that will go bad if I dont cook them soon. I figure it'll leave me leftovers at least for one meal, if not two. That's lunch, as I have work at 4:00. Here's hoping I dont lose my mind! Or my feet dont fall off...

Quite a shock...

June 9th, 2007 at 04:10 pm

I've been posting so frequently in the last few days! Hope you all arent getting sick of me!

So I sat down and did a breakdown of my numbers currently, something I've been meaning to do for a while. I added up all the student debt I have right now. $14,964.81. AHHHHH!!!! Looking at that number makes me queasy, especially considering that's not where it ends! I still have more schooling! My measley EF right now is at $225, which is a dangerous low. My vacation savings, after you take away the rent check I'll have to pay and expenses that will be due either while I'm away or when I get back is at $95. hahaha. I'm sure this isn't funny, but the upside is that I still think I'll be okay. I've got this next week ahead of me, and I'm more than sure I'll have the alotted $500 or so I was planning on spending for the trip.

Now, some more number crunching. My estimated income for every month is around $1390. This is assuming I average $60 every night and $20 every lunch shift. Obviously, these averages are not always on the dot. Usually, I make more than this average. I added up my expenses: rent, electric, gas, cell, perscription, transportation, internet, life insurance, and groceries. That was $617 altogether. I added an extry $83 to round it off to $700 and account for things like eating at restaurants, entertainment, and clothes.

This $700 in expenses should make up approx. 50% of what I make in a month, leaving me with an extra $700 to distribute. So why is it that I dont have $700 in my checking account at the end of every month? Well, I spend it. Erg. The goal? To live on that $700 a month. I'll dip into $50 more if necessary (our utilities aren't always on the dot either), but I think that should be more than enough.

I figure the remaining $700 can be alotted to both my EF and my debt, which though I am still in school and not REQUIRED to pay off now, scares the living something out of me, and needs to be taken care of while the interest is still piling high.

So, here are my financial goals:

1. Get my EF up to $1000 by the first of the new year. I dont think this should be difficult. Eventually I want it to reach $2100 (that's 3 months' expenses).

2. Keep track CONTINUALLY of my finances, to the penny, for the next year. I have a bad habit of trailing off every once in a while... that seems to be the periods when my spending gets a little out of hand.

3. Live on $750 a month. This of course means that my "pleasure spending" needs to be capped pretty tightly. It needs to remain in that $83 range.

4. Take all money that is not spent on my expenses (within the $750) or put into the EF and send it all to my debt.

Some shorter-term goals:

1. No eating at restaurants until I go on vacation (the 20th of this month).

2. No Starbucks for the rest of this month.

3. No buying clothes for the rest of this month.

4. Save up $500 by vacation.

Summertime Picnic and work today...

June 9th, 2007 at 04:47 am

I completely forgot to mention my [super] frugal picnic last night! BF and I decided to do dinner IN, rather than out. Well, we were certainly OUTside, but eating yummy things bought from Aldi about a week ago... We grilled brats and these chile lime chicken burgers from Trader Joes, and I boiled the corn with chives and it was quite good! And certainly cheaper than going to a restaurant! In light of my new camera (which was the best gift, EVER), I hope to be posting more pictures. Here are a few from our picnic last night:


A view of the pool outside my apartment building, the picnic area is right next to it.


A picnic table, and our cooler :P


Our bounty.


A dog done right.


The sun was setting on our lovely meal. So pretty!

Aside from the picnic, work was long (yet profitable). As it turns out, my schedule will be awfully hectic next week, what with the US open. I work 6 days, 3 of them doubles. :P This, while good for my wallet, will be incredibly tiresome. It'll be a long week. At any rate, I'm hoping the weather's nice tomorrow. I'm going to try and relax before work.

I need to continue working on my friend's surprise-- a scarf I'm crocheting for her! I'll have to post pictures! Yay! Night, all!

Work work work.

June 8th, 2007 at 02:02 pm

I've got my double ahead today, and I'm about to leave for work. Yesterday ended up being a no-spend day. I'm hoping today will be the same. I'm also hoping to make a decent amount of money, making up for the shortage early in the week. I finished the 6th Harry Potter book yesterday, and it almost left me in tears! I wont give away endings or anything, but for who anyone who has already read it, I want to convene and shout, "why?? whyyyyy???" Such a good man, afterall...

That's about it for today, everyone wish me luck!

Mmm Homemade Breakfast

June 7th, 2007 at 05:28 pm

So a couple of friends came over last night, we played the wii and drank a bit. Made sure to stay in. It ended up being much cheaper that way! This morning one of them was still here, so I made us breakfast to avoid heading out to get breakfast. Also a good choice. As for the rest of the day, I'm going to clean up the apartment a bit, then head outside and lay by the pool. It was a bit too chilly yesterday, unfortunately.

By the way, my artichoke came out pretty good yesterday, especially for a first-timer. I'm not sure if I'll make another anytime soon, as BF doesn't eat them, and eating an entire globe artichoke by myself constituted dinner. They're a bit of a pain to eat as well, it seems. But tasty! Tonight I think we'll grill, as BF will be home and we have brats and corn-on-the-cob.

Tomorrow it's back to work, which is both good and bad, I suppose. I enjoy my days off and tomorrow is my double, but the $$ coming in is always nice! I think it'll be a low-key night, perhaps I'll watch a movie later. At any rate, everyone have a good day!

p.s. On a final note, I canceled my world of warcraft subscription... $15 a month I'm saving. Yay! I dont think I'll miss it too much.

A nice Day!

June 6th, 2007 at 04:40 pm

Ahh... my day off. What to do? I already slept in til noon WinkThe great abundence of odd, vivid dreams tells me I [finally] caught up on all that sleep I've been missing out on since the weekend. Either that, or I'm going crazy. Those dreams certainly were. At any rate, I'm planning the course of the day.

It's sunny, and supposed to remain that way, so I might go lay out by the pool for a while and read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. I've started it, halfway through it, and love it. Cant wait til the 7th book comes out. I dont know what I'm going to do when the series ends, though. It'll be a shame. I'm always so sad when the books end.

Friends of ours may be coming over later, but we have enough alcohol leftover from the party to intoxicate an army, so there will be no need to buy more. We could easily barbecue using the food we have here. Come to think of it, we really should make that corn.

I was going to cook an artichoke, too. haha. I saw one in the store and realized that I haven't had one in YEARS. I honestly dont remember where I had one, either. It certainly wasn't with my parents. Either way, I intend on making one. Let's hope it comes out alright. We bought one at Trader joes, and it was quite big. I read in a cookbook that the medium-small size taste the best (after I bought them, of course), so I hope this one turns out okay. It's not huge by any means, but it is certainly on the larger side of medium. Cross your fingers!

After all that's been said, I think it's going to be another no-spend day. Yesterday was, save my bus fare. I finished off my pasta this afternoon as well, so I'm out of leftovers. Just the right time to get cooking again! I was thinking of baking cookies today as well. Mmm. Work last night ended up being better than expected. My focus is now on saving that money I've earned. I'm thinking of listing a couple things on amazon and taking a trip to the exchange. We'll see... Well, have a great day, everyone!

If I've said it once, I've said it a thousand times...

June 5th, 2007 at 03:55 pm

...I'm cracking down on this spending. For real. With vacation quickly approaching, I've realized that I should have MUCH more saved up than I do right now. I calculated out how much I'll need, approximately, and how much I'll make between now and then. It's a bit startling, but I also made my estimates based on lower income than usual. The restaurant's been doing very poorly for the last month. Lucky for me, the US open is coming up, and before vacation. I'm hoping this brings in quite a bit of traffic. The only downside is our big booming business is going to be majority foreign, so I cant expect booming tips (though if I do get them, I'll be VERY pleasantly surprised!).

My coworker has been teaching me some japanese here and there, I want to learn how to at least carry on a small conversation with my customers. Here's what I learned yesterday:

onomimono wa doonasai masuka?
(what would you like to drink?)

More will follow! Smile It's been quite a while since my last japanese class, so the refreshment is nice. Work tonight, but it's all you can eat. erg. Not the best of nights, most of us servers dread it. Bad tips, noone really buys appetizers or desserts, and it's a total mess. More work, more I have to tip out to chefs... poo. But money is money, so I'll just have to look at things optimistically.

As for the time spent before work, I haven't decided. I bought the 6th Harry Potter book the other day (got 30% off because I'm friends with the guy at the bookstore). I believe I'll be reading that for the better part of the day. Now, where is the real question. BF has class at 2:45, and I usually ride with him downtown at that point. HOWEVER, I usually end up spending $10-15 when I do that because I'm sitting around downtown for 3 hours and the evil forces of Starbucks, etc draw me in. The other option is to take the bus. This would cost me $1.75, but that's a bit less than $10. Not to mention, I'd be able to eat dinner at home. I suppose I could pack my dinner to take with me, but I was going to eat leftovers.

I got the Silver Palate cookbook for my birthday (thanks Gram and Gramps!) and I tried a recipe yesterday: Pasta Primavera Gregory. I cut it in half and still ended up with tons of leftovers. Not that I'm complaining Smile I love leftovers. I did, though, have to buy bags of things (produce), so I'm going to be scouring my cookbooks for recipes to use the excess before it goes bad. I hate wasting, afterall...

Speaking of wasting, it's been bothering me quite badly lately. I'm trying to be much more eco-friendly and conservationistic. I bought 2 canvas bags at trader joe's for my groceries and started trying to recycle my paper products and such. But I keep noticing all the foodwaste that goes on here in the US. I work at a restaurant, and we put veggies and potatoes and such on the plate with our eentres. 70% of the time, those veggies go untouched and get thrown away. Same with rice. Same with fruit on the plate with icecream. I went to Chipotle when I was in Ohio. I told the boy I wanted a veggie burrito, so he heated up my tortilla and slid it to the next boy down, who put beef on it. When the first boy told the second that I wanted only veggies, he threw it in the trash! A bit heap of rice, beans, and chicken! I would have told him I would still eat it, but he threw it away before I had the chance. It kills me all the wasting that is done in restaurants when there are so many starving all over the world. There are days that I want to load up syrofoam containers with the untouched food that my restaurant is throwing out, and hand it out to the homeless! Or take it home... haha. Our veggies are pretty good, you know Smile

Either way, sorry for the superlong post. Everyone have a great day!

My birthday and adventures since.

June 5th, 2007 at 03:36 am

So it's been a little while since my last entry. I have quite a bit of updating. My birthday was last week. I'm now 21 and a bit poorer because of it. I went out with friends on tuesday night, then had a party saturday night. Both were ridiculously fun. I got to celebrate both in Pittsburgh and Akron, so the tour de 21st was complete. I got to see a friend of mine that has been away for the last 3 years, about 30 people came to my party in Ohio, and me and my best friend from highschool talked about the wedding thing and all is well. I'll be making a speech at the reception Smile

Other than that, the only exciting news is that I went to trader joes for the first time today. I dont think I'll ever shop anywhere else. I bought an array of things, all very decently priced, and far healthier than the crap I've been eating lately. We did buy quite a bit, though, so BF and I have decided that we will not go out to eat for at least the next two weeks. We need to keep saving for vacation anyways. It's so soon!

As for my birthday, I made out quite well for gifts. I was entirely unsuspecting, but I was a delightful surprise for sure! Included were: subway cookies, a homemade apple pie, sparklers, fun noodles, a videogame, earrings from italy, wine, vodka, the Silver Palate cookbook (fantastic), a dress, a shirt, a necklace, and BF got me a new camera (eep!) so I took PLENTY of pictures... here are a few! Enjoy!


BF and moi. We're quite the silly pair...


And again...


With a friend of mine at the bar...


My best friend is in the middle (Wesley) and my other good friend on the left (Melissa)


These are all my gals.


Drunken sparklers were a great idea...hehe.