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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in red_sput's LiveJournal:

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Saturday, June 13th, 2009
9:33 pm
So, I'm fully employed once again. I started last Monday. It's nice to be employed, though now I'm back to thinking about vacation time and how it works.

I want to travel places. I guess work should always be one's primary focus and I'm totally ok with that as I like to work hard and contribute to society, I just wonder how you can pursue a hobby like traveling to broaden your horizons while being held to 10 days of travel(vacation) a year. I'm not quite sure how to make this work yet.

I believe I knew by choosing to live in Seattle, that I was giving up opportunities to travel. Vacation is spent almost entirely on family, which isn't a bad thing and I really wish I could visit them more, but it decreases the option to do other things and life becomes overly routine.

I dunno, I just want to at least have the option to visit Europe or be able to visit friends and family as much as I want too if the opportunities present themselves. Maybe I'll have the opportunity to talk to people who have had more travel opportunities and see what their thoughts are.

It is something I'll have to figure out. It just seems to be one of two things I really want that I'm missing right now. I'll have to think about this for awhile.

I guess I should feel fortunate I don't have children, as that would certainly limit travel opportunities more than anything else, though than I might get visited more too. :-p

I'll be home July 3-14 on what I believe will be unpaid, pre-approved time off.

Current Mood: blank
Wednesday, May 27th, 2009
9:24 pm
Getting ready for summer
Time for another thrilling post in the exciting red_sput livejournal series. As usual, I end up on livejournal, but not usual I actually add a blog post.

Last week was pretty crazy. Had a first car accident. It took about 11 years before I got one so at least that's good. My brakes had been speaking to me for awhile, and I was just a few weeks from getting them replaced too. Either way, certainly not an expense I wanted right now. Now I've got a rental car while a body shop is fixing the front corners of the Camry.

I had a huge false start with the job search last week, a company pretty much told me they were going to hire me and then backed out at the last second due to a quick change in their hiring ability. I just keep taking it all one day at a time. My temporary job has been low stress, but I'm really eager to get started somewhere full time.

It's amazing how time flies by. It will be the fourth anniversary of my arrival in Seattle in a couple weeks. The wonderful Seattle summer has arrived again and I feel I need to take advantage of it more. I guess that is what significant others are for, though I don't see myself moving in that direction yet and still not sure if I will ever end up in that direction.

I'll be flying into Chicago July 3rd and coming back to Seattle the 14th. That should be an interesting trip, I'm looking forward to it though.

I've been craving social attention a little too much lately, I feel like the 21st century equivalent of "watched pots don't boil" would be "watched facebook/twitter/gmail don't produce status updates".........

Current Mood: hopeful
Saturday, May 9th, 2009
8:58 pm
May and June are my slow months. I need to apply myself somehow, but end up in a rut. I'm excited for later this summer though.

Hmm, what to post about. The job search is pretty grinding, but I'm exceedingly resilent. I doubt further rejections will get me down. There's contract possibilities that are popping up which could present good learning experiences, and there is definitely some solid hope in some other opportunities. I've certainly been busy, but the weekends are exceedingly slow right now.

I've got a very kinetic personality. I always like doing something productive or active, though I'm not always successful at getting things started or initiating action until it reaches a breaking point. A conference I attended Friday had an hour segment about dealing with conflict. It was interesting. It's not easy, but obviously important that everyone in a group states their opinions in order for a group to be successful. I've seen so many strained relationships in so many circumstances lately among people in groups that it just doesn't make any sense to me. I just don't see the point in fighting when there are broader goals to accomplish.

Well, I'm looking forward to July, but I don't want to waste any time. I've got amazing friends and incredible relationships and I'm very thankful all the wonderful people in my life and those who support me. It gives me a lot of confidence that would otherwise be hard for me to gather.

Current Mood: complacent
Saturday, February 7th, 2009
9:56 am
Time for a post
Well, we've made it to 2009. It seems like time continues to roll on. There's probably a lot to discuss from the past 9 months. Perhaps, the trips to Canada in July and November or the trip to Kansas in December but these now show up in the photo album on facebook which reaches a much greater audience.

I have nothing planned for this weekend. I'll probably work on organizing a few things.

There's a whole bunch I could write about now, but I'm not sure it would do much good, in the meantime I can feel another Saturday slipping away.

Current Mood: listless
Saturday, May 10th, 2008
8:41 pm
Life is good
So it has been awhile. What have I been up to since the day I was stranded in the Denver airport in December? Well, 1st Quarter was definitely geared towards work. It was pretty crazy and a lot was going on, but it was also a good learning experience. I've definitely been fairly busy with all kinds of stuff which has allowed things to roll along rather smoothly & quickly.

I'll be back to the Denver airport next week and then after a couple days of hiking, alpine slides and perhaps other activities I'll be catching a ride back to Chicago and spend a couple days with the parents for Memorial Day before flying back.

Definitely looking forward to the next few months. No place is better to be than Seattle in the summer.

Current Mood: content
Saturday, December 22nd, 2007
2:55 pm
What better thing to do than post when you are stranded in Denver
So I arrived in Denver about 3 hours ago and it's a beautiful sunny day here. My flight got in from Seattle 20 minutes early and now the flight to KC from here is being continually delayed as they are having a major storm event so I'm using my new computer to surf the net on the airport Wifi.

I haven't posted since August. It has been a very busy fall as I had expected. Las Vegas was a blast, hiking Mt. Rainier with my brother was awesome, and alumni band at Purdue was really cool as usual in a 'band geek' kind of way.

Work has gotten increasingly busy but I'm getting more higher level things to do as well. I'm currently trying hard to get to Kansas for Christmas, but the weather is no cooperative. I am enjoying my stay in Colorado though :-p

I'm also now an officially licensed CPA in the state of Washington. I have the cool little certificate & license material and you can look me up on the Washington Board of Accountancy's website under licensee search.

Life is good.

Current Mood: content
Friday, August 24th, 2007
8:01 pm
Vegas Baby
I'll be in Vegas the next three days. Never been so I'm looking forward to it.

Work is really great right now. I feel very fortunate.

I had yet to mention this here, but the AICPA sent me a letter a few weeks ago saying on the first part of the CPA exam that they told me I had failed, there was a scoring error on it and I really passed. So I passed all four parts on the first try and passed one part twice. They'll reimburse me for the retake, but I don't get the study time back, boo. I can pay the emergency room fees for my broken nose now I guess. I met with my controller and she agreed to sign off on my experience so I should be licensed in the next few months.

I'll be moving to Kirkland at the end of September. Not too much closer to work than I am right now(still close enough to save 15-20 minutes on the commute each way though), but I really like the location, it is also a lot cheaper then my current place(smaller though too).

Looking forward to football season. Ohio State is visiting out here in a couple weeks so I'll watch them, and I've got a couple Oregon State trips to sit in the coach's box there planned as well again. We can't forget alumni band either. Talk about a packed fall, but it'll be great.

Current Mood: chipper
Wednesday, July 11th, 2007
9:01 pm
Seattle heat?
So today was the "hot" day in Seattle. We broke a record high and recorded a 98 degree reading at the airport. While it may have been that warm temperature-wise. It felt quite pleasant. There's no such thing as "hot & humid" here. A 98 degree reading feels more like 92-94 since the air is so dry. The heat usually lasts one to two days before we cool back into the typical low 70s and we record maybe five 90 degree days all summer long.

People don't have air conditioning here, and there is definitely no need for it. We have that one day where we hit 90 and all the news people run around trying to figure out how people are surviving, what their plan for being cool is, and how dangerous heat can be. It is quite comical because the duration is so short. You can't have two straight weeks over 90 like in Chicago or pretty much everywhere else back east. It just doesn't happen. It's amazingly pleasant, but anytime you see people try to deal with stuff that is extreme to them or pushes them out of their limited comfort zone it is interesting to watch.

So I continue enjoy the pleasant summers out here. I'll be trekking to a wedding near Chicago next weekend, and my parents will be out here the following weekend for a trip to the Pacific Coast & the Olympic Peninsula. Two weekends later I'll be at a wedding in Oregon and two weekends after that I'm planning a trip to Vegas. Then it will be football season and all the travel related to that.

All right, that's enough for now. The stitches are out of my nose and it looks a lot better despite the break. I'm still enjoying the summer.

Current Mood: calm
Saturday, June 30th, 2007
7:46 pm
An eventful week
So all is still going ok out here in Seattle. I passed the ethics exam a week and a half ago so now I just have to sit down with a CPA and have my experience verified and then I'll send out the CPA license application.

Our company had our annual Mariner's Suite day last Wednesday where we got out early and got to spend the afternoon in a suite with coworkers in Safeco. It's nice to have a few events like that.

On Thursday I was playing softball with coworkers and got hit dead on in the nose with a throw I wasn't able to catch. I bled a whole lot and had to go to the ER and get stitches. The nose did break so I will have to follow up with that. I've been sort of sick for the last couple of weeks so this complicates that a bit too. Oh well, I'll make it through. It just doesn't look very pretty right now.

July is finally almost here, the back half the month will be quite a bit busier than the opening half.

Life sort of has me bummed out again, it's just one of those nights....

Current Mood: drained
Sunday, May 20th, 2007
6:01 pm
Sunday evening
So I haven't posted in awhile, but it's a little wet today. We're getting close to our continuous summer dry season soon, so I figured I'd get a post in.

So what have I been doing since late February? Well, the CPA exam is over, but for some reason it doesn't feel like I have any more time. I still haven't filled out the application for the license, taken the ethics exam, or have my experience signed off on. All of those are relatively simple tasks though, and I expect to be completed with them in the next month or so. I guess I sort of made time for the studying and now that I can go home and go to sleep early so I can be fully alert the following day I sort of do that.

I went to my first wedding of the year in April in Chicago, another wedding is coming up in Indianapolis in June. It also looks like I may have one in August and one in November out here as well. It is definitely the year of the weddings.

The parents are coming out in late July so I'll be using that to visit the Olympic Penninsula & National Park. I'm definitely looking forward to that since I have yet to go to the Pacific Coast since I've been here.

I don't have much planned for Memorial Day, but I'm sure things will arise. My company has been doing some fun events. We finished up our Volleyball league a couple weeks ago and the softball league is just getting under way. We'll be renting out a Mariner's suite in late June on a weekday afternoon. That should be a really good time.

Life continues to move along. Definitely looking forward to the summer weather ahead.

Current Mood: tired
Wednesday, February 28th, 2007
9:30 pm
It's over
The CPA test is over for me. I found out yesterday morning I received a 79 on the one test I didn't pass the first try. I'm so relieved. What was almost all of the past year of my life is finally complete. The controller took the entire accounting department out to lunch to celebrate.

It's really unbelievable that it is finally over. I kept checking the score to make sure it was true. I read the congratulatory notice from the Board of Accountancy over and over. Everyone knows what this is. I don't think I even really knew that. The whole company congratulated me. The receptionist came up and said. "Wow, I didn't know you were working on that, you're really smart"

I can take this anywhere and people know what it is. It is known in virtually every industry and everyone needs accountants. My GPA is now completely irrelevant.

Well, I got that sense of accomplishment, credibility, confidence, and verification of intelligence I'm always looking for. Now to continue to expand on to even bigger things. I've almost got the feeling anything is possible sometimes, the realization that I can be incredibly confident and capable despite everything that has come at me before.

I'll take a bit of a break for now and look to focus on some fun, rewarding activities this summer, maybe I'll even have more time to write here, but no guarantees. All I have left to get the CPA license is to purchase the ethics package, send that in and get my experience signed off. The tests are now done forever. I will never have to take them again. I will always have that credibility of passing those four tests.

I still can't believe it. It's finally over.

Current Mood: relieved
Tuesday, February 6th, 2007
7:03 pm
I'm here
So it has been awhile. My life feels busy, but it probably isn't as much as it really feels so. I work all day and I get home and there usually isn't that much time in the evening especially if I have something else going on that evening. Since I start work around 7 to try to give me an evening it does sort of require me to get to sleep before 9 some nights to make up for that. The world just seems to be flying by.

So what's new? My new job is actually pretty cool. It is in downtown Seattle so that makes the commute a little long even by bus, but overall it is a big improvement over my previous job. The company is sponsoring an employee skiing trip in early March and I'm really excited about that since I've never been skiing. What better way to learn skiing than for your company to pay for it. It's nice when you have mountains just a 90 minute ride from downtown Seattle:-)

So I took my last CPA part in mid-January. I should get that score back in a few weeks. The test was harder so I am concerned, but I know harder questions are worth more and since 15 of the 90 questions don't count it is impossible to know how well you did. I really hope I am done studying, but if not I will go at it again.

What really has me bummed right now is my car. I think it is dying. It has gone for 10 years, but it just doesn't have much left. I will need to figure out how to car shop soon I think.

Well, that's really my current life in a nutshell. I'll be in Chicago from April 12-15 for a wedding. Another friend is getting married near Indy June 9 so I will probably be making that trip as well. I've got at least those two weddings I will need to attend this year. When did I get so old.

It has been very Springlike here recently, I think the groundhog was right, at least for Seattle, but spring usually goes from mid January to mid July here.

All righty, that's my exciting update from the west coast.

Current Mood: okay
Friday, December 22nd, 2006
4:29 am
I have power!
I finally got power back today a week after the windstorm that whipped our area. Now I'm trying to catch up and get better after sleeping several nights in the cold, but at least I have a 3 day weekend ahead.

I've got a post I'm going to finish from Saturday sometime maybe that included my adventure to work on Friday which involved avoiding trees and power lines on dark morning roads with no stoplights working only to find out there was just one bridge open across the lake. It was pretty wild. We'll see, that may be the next thing I work on, but for now I have a test coming up Jan. 15 and I'm way behind.

Merry Christmas!

Current Mood: tired
Thursday, November 30th, 2006
4:12 am
It has been awhile
It has been a rather crazy month. I'm pretty busy now. I guess I should still update from time to time though, we'll see how it goes though. I just got back Monday night from a road trip to my parents in Chicago for Thanksgiving. Went up the Sears Tower for the first time in 16 years, and walked Michigan Ave. and the lake a couple times. It was a crazy 4000+ mile trip with my roommate and coworker but good times were had. I got a chance to walk around Mall of America for the first time, that was pretty cool. The icestorm in Minnesota was also fun, I'd never passed someone on a rural interstate highway going 17 mph before. We stopped at Wall Drug at 1:30am while obliterating the sheets of ice that had accumulated on the car. I knocked off Montana & North Dakota on my list of states to visit. We also almost hit five Rams making themselves at home in the right lane while heading over a Montana Mountain Pass on I-90.

The craziest thing though was back in Seattle. Over the past few days the city has been pretty paralyzed. A somewhat decent snowfall actually occurred within the city with more accumulations in the suburbs. As we rolled back over the final mountain pass into the metro area Monday Night we saw abandoned cars strewn all over I-90. Buses and semis were turned on their side. People were walking out of their cars and chatting. Others gave up on their cars and walked. Some were trying to put on chains. The expressways were packed all the way through the early morning hours on Tuesday with commutes taking up to 8 hours or more. It was a rather crazy scene. The temperatures dipped into the teens yesterday evening which is a very rare occurence and barely made it to freezing this afternoon. After the final snow/freezing rain occurence occurs this evening we will break the wettest month record in the history of the city, but will finally warm back up into our typical winter rain pattern. They definitely aren't very prepared for these conditions out here. I need to learn to ski, there are way too mountains around to not be enjoying this.

So I've been at my new job for almost a month now. It's really cool to be on top of the second tallest building in the city. The mountain views are incredible. It's a lot different than the other job. I'm looking forward to learning more from this opportunity. I also finally got that comma and then some.

Still working on that final CPA test. I'll be taking it Jan. 15 over the MLK day holiday. I've still got a lot of work to do with that, but hopefully I can get it taken care of and be done with this finally. I'm not going anywhere for Christmas so hopefully that will give me more time to study a little.

Well, I guess that is all for now. Now I have to think about hardcore studying. I'll try to remember to update my journal as well instead of just going through my friends page from time to time.

Current Mood: contemplative
Friday, October 20th, 2006
1:42 am
Vacation and job offers
So the job search ended very quickly this time. I received two offers in the past week and accepted one in downtown Seattle which I will be starting on Nov. 6. Both offers were really good but I think I probably chose the right one. I guess I will see how it goes but I think I will really like working with these people. It is a substantial step up from what I have been doing and probably a heck of a lot more than I would be getting if I had followed my current company to Dallas. It'll be different working on top of one of the tallest buildings downtown and I will need to commute by bus now, but I think I'll be able to get used to it.

I resigned from my current job effective Nov. 3 and will be on vacation starting tomorrow and going all the way through next week as I enjoy some time in Chicago with a side trip to Purdue for the Penn State game. It'll be nice to have a break before I head into my new job. I'm glad I got the job hunting over with quickly so now I have the opportunity to regain focus on that last CPA section I need to pass.

It will be an interesting few weeks as we head into the holidays. I'm looking forward to the new challenges that await.

Current Mood: mellow
Thursday, October 12th, 2006
1:32 am
Another busy week
I'm finally moved into my new place. It's really nice and the location is pretty good too. It's close but still pretty out of the way. It's pretty calm and peaceful. This makes me happy. The internet and stuff isn't up yet so I'm spending some time at Panera this week.

The weather is absolutely amazing this week. It's like summer has decided to linger on this year. Endless sunshine this week and tomorrow it should be well into the 70s. The rain will eventually get here as we go further into fall, but I'm enjoying this while I can.

I've got more interviews over the next couple of days, it's keeping me really busy, but things are looking very promising. I'm pretty excited. Work is using its holiday party fund(There will be no party due to the terminations) to buy us lunch from time to time now, that's pretty cool.

I'll be back to Chicago for a week long visit starting at the end of next week(Oct.20-29). This should be a lot of fun. I'll make at least an appearance at the Penn State-Purdue game, but not sure if I'll see anyone. It'll probably be a fairly quick trip this time and I'll be spending the vast majority of the time in Chicago. If anyone is in the vicinity that week let me know.

Well that's it for now, gotta get out and enjoy the weather, unpack some more, and prepare for these interviews.

Current Mood: bouncy
Friday, September 29th, 2006
7:53 pm
More positive news on the CPA front
I just got my Business Score back today and I passed with an 89! I was feeling pretty good about it, but wasn't sure it would be quite that high. I was closer to a perfect score (99) than a passing score (75). This will definitely help as I continue the job search.

I can't believe I got through three of the four parts on the first try. Now I still have over a year to pass the last remaining part before any of my passed parts expire. I'm tentatively thinking a Nov. 27 date for my retake of Financial. I could have this whole thing done by the end of the year. This would be very exciting. I definitely wasn't thinking I would be this far along at this point.

I'm insanely busy. Work is still very busy, we're just beginning the transfer of properties to Memphis & Dallas next week and there's still a lot of work to be done. I've also got interviews taking big chunks out of my work day that I need to make up with additional time in other days. On top of this I'll be moving to a new place next Saturday in Redmond.

I'm planning to head to Oregon tomorrow for the Oregon State-Cal game. I'll definitely be trying to follow Purdue-ND in the morning as well. It should be a fun day.

At this point the job prospects are looking pretty good in Seattle. I got called about my interest in following the company to Dallas, but I just don't think it will be necessary. It looks like I can find something a lot better here. Western Washington is amazing. Every day I'm here I like it more. It is truly a unique place that I really don't think you can match. I definitely have not had my fill of the area yet and I may never want to leave. It really is that nice. I guess it is a place you really have to see to believe and I definitely have not seen enough of it yet. As fun as it would be to follow pupiccchick to Dallas, it just doesn't seem like a place I would be very enthused about going to. Perhaps if the economy was down and there weren't very many other options here I would seriously consider it, but it really doesn't seem like that is the case. It is not completely out of the question pending how the job search continues over the next few months, but I think I like Seattle too much:-p Dallas doesn't have the same mountains, lakes, and trees that we have here. I wouldn't be nearly as proud showing people around Dallas than Seattle either:-p

Ok, that's all for now. Next week will be insane with interviews, work, class, and moving, but I think I can survive it very well. I'm pretty good at doing that.

Current Mood: optimistic
Tuesday, September 26th, 2006
9:03 pm
Back in Seattle
I've made it back to Washington. I'm still jet-lagged and trying to make it through the immense amount of work I need to complete from missing the past few days. On top of that I've got interviewing to do this week as well.

A quick review of the weekend:

Arrived Thursday night, went to practice Friday afternoon, saw Purdue win Saturday, hung out with some other alumni people Saturday night, hung out with TBS people most of the day Sunday, flew back early Monday morning. It's all good. Just a lot going on and really tired.

It'll be a very long few weeks until I fly back to the midwest for a week on Oct. 20. I still have to continue studying during this time and stepping it up a notch in November.

Current Mood: exhausted
Tuesday, September 19th, 2006
9:28 pm
Going to Purdue
Yay, in 48 hours I'll be at Purdue. I need to pack tonight with what is left of it since tomorrow I've got work, meeting, and then class. My flight leaves Thursday afternoon and I'll make it to Indianapolis after 10pm and I'll be back here Monday morning. I'll probably be a pretty exhausted camper this weekend but I will try not to spoil the fun:) There's so many people I haven't seen in a year or longer. That's a lot of people to see in three days. I'll do my best.

Looking forward to seeing my first ever Purdue home football game as a spectator. I believe I have marched in 33 Purdue home games including last years alumni band, and have yet to watch a game in Ross Ade without my instrument. It will truly be a different experience. I guess I will have to get used to it. Of course getting back on a regular basis is a challenge when you are 2200 miles away. The game should be fun, we better find a way to win.

Thanks to those of you coming out of the woodwork to comment on that last post. I really think it will all be ok. I believe the net result of this will be a much better position quicker. I was hoping to finish the CPA before getting a new position, but with the economy chugging along out here just the fact that I have passed a couple parts may be enough to get me in a good spot. I've got a lot of interviewing to do in the next few weeks, I'm looking forward to it.

Well, there isn't much else to report at this time, but I'm looking forward to seeing a few of you at Friday's practice, maybe a few more of you at the game Saturday, and perhaps crash a TBS meeting somewhere in there if there is one this weekend. I really don't have a clue what's going on this weekend, I'm just going to show up and go with the flow and hopefully see as many people as possible. It will be strange because it has been so long, but I think it will be a good time. I listened to my Purdue band cd for the first time in several months yesterday and I'm ready to sing Hail Purdue once again:-)

Up Game Boiler Day!!

Current Mood: bouncy
Wednesday, September 13th, 2006
11:37 pm
well, that was an interesting development
So this morning we were all gathered into the front lobby at work and told we were being laid off as they are consolidating client accounting services into Dallas & Memphis. This was pretty shocking to pretty much everyone in the office. No one really saw it coming. It does make sense what they are doing, but it definitely was not expected and they really kept it tight. My Vice President & hiring manager didn't find out until this morning either and I believe only two people(The Senior VP & Senior Controller)out of about 75 in the office knew before today.

So back to the drawing board, I'm looking forward to researching some new opportunities and moving up the ladder a bit. I'm not very upset at this particular development as the economy is good and there seem to be lots of opportunities out there, but it hit a lot of the older people at the office really hard.

I'll be searching extensively in the Seattle area before my termination on Dec. 31 and if things don't go well on that front over the next few months I could follow the company to Dallas(unlikely) or perhaps head to Oregon for another potential opportunity. I'm definitely looking to stay in Seattle though, but if the offer is sweet enough elsewhere I will consider it.

I think they are doing a good job with the termination, they are eliminating nearly 70 employees and the vast majority of us will get 3 1/2 months before termination along with a pretty nice severence package. So there's lots of time, but I'm pretending there's no time and trying to come to a successful conclusion to the job searching as soon as possible so I don't have to worry about it at Christmas. I'll post any updates, but I'm still at the beginning of the process.

I will still be at Purdue next weekend mostly because the plane tickets are already bought. We didn't lose any of this year's vacation time or any other benefit we were scheduled to have before termination.

It was an interesting day to say the least. There was a very wide range of emotions and very little work got done. I was mostly in curious wonder since this is my first real job and have never seen something like this take place yet. A lot of the major players in the company had come out from the Dallas headquarters this morning for this announcement. It was a very packed lobby when the announcement was made.

Well, that's all I have for now. I'm confident all of this will go over well, still getting over how much of a surprise it was for all of us though. One day we're just moving along getting stuff done and the next morning everyone's fired. It was definitely an interesting experience.

Current Mood: curious
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