Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Traditions and Superstitions

New Year

 Here are a few 
New Year Traditions and Superstitions. 
Can you think of some more?

* Firecrackers and making noise scares away evil spirits.
* If you don’t clean your home by midnight, your home will be dirty all year. 
* Before midnight, make sure you have money in your pockets or purse.
* At midnight, open the doors and windows to let out the Old Year and to bring in the New Year.
* Pay bills before New Year’s Day.
* The first person to come into your home should be a good-looking dark-haired man bringing gifts of bread, salt, wine, and fresh fruit.
* For good luck, eat 12 grapes, pork, black eyed peas, lentils, greens or cabbage.
* Using scissors or knives will cut off any fortune coming your way.
* Washing dishes, washing your hair, washing clothes will wash away luck and can cause death in the family in the coming year.
* To keep your money, on New Year’s Day, nothing of value should leave the house, do not pay for anything, do not lend money, do not give away precious gems.
*Wear red underwear for love and yellow underwear for prosperity.
* For love, health, and prosperity, dance around a tree.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

-=-Happy Bunny-=-

Happy Bunny

I know it is not the end of the year yet, but I am so ready for 2009 to walk out the door... Looking for work this time around is no different than last time: My biggest weakness is that I do not have a social work license and my degree is in Criminal Justice instead of Social Work. 

I cannot believe that I have already been unemployed for two weeks. I turned in my first job search report to the employment office, and I received a phone call from somebody who will be checking my progress every two weeks, but I still do not know if I will receive unemployment benefits. Plans for today are to go to the employment office to refresh my Resume and to apply for some leads I found on the Web, pick up the little pamphlet of weekly classified ads at the Library, and run some errands.

According to the free Tarot readings on the web, I'm spinning my wheels, because at the moment, there is no hope for me to find a job. Wonder if my ex-employer is already talking bad about me.


Thursday, December 24, 2009

More Xmas Tags & Christmas Trivia



Christmas Holiday Trivia

The word Christmas is Old English, a contraction of Christ's Mass.

The first president to decorate the white house Christmas tree in the United States was Franklin Pierce.

Germany made the first artificial Christmas trees. They were made of goose feathers and dyed green.

Electric lights for trees were first used in 1895.

The first Christmas cards were vintage and invented in 1843, the Victorian Era.

"It's a Wonderful Life" appears on TV more often than any other holiday movie.

Rudolph" was actually created by Montgomery Ward in the late 1930's for a holiday promotion. The rest is history.

The Nutcracker" is the most famous Christmas ballet.

Jingle Bells" was first written for Thanksgiving and then became one of the most popular Christmas songs.

If you received all of the gifts in the song "The Twelve Days of Christmas," you would receive 364 gifts.

The poinsettia plant was brought into the United States from Mexico by Joel Poinsett in the early 1800's.

Holly berries are poisonous.

Contrary to common belief, poinsettia plants are non-toxic.

Mistletoe was chosen as Oklahoma's state flower in 1893 and later changed to the state floral emblem.

In 1843, "A Christmas Carol" was written by Charles Dickens in just six weeks.

The first state to recognize the Christmas holiday officially was Alabama.

Christmas became a national holiday in America on June, 26, 1870.

An angel told Mary she was going to have a baby.

Clearing up a common misconception, in Greek, X means Christ. That is where the word "X-Mas" comes from. Not because someone took the "Christ" out of Christmas.

Traditionally, Christmas trees are taken down after Epiphany.

More diamonds are sold around Christmas than any other time of the year.

In Mexico, wearing red underwear on New Year's Eve is said to bring new love in the upcoming year.

Christmas Eve Traditions

1. Create a Holiday Environment: Christmas music, lights, candles.
2. Worship: Midnight Mass
3. Prepare Christmas Eve Dinner
4. Deliver Christmas Presents
5. Donate Time to Charities - Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen or Homeless Shelter
6. Holiday Travel
7. Read "The Night Before Christmas" to the children and serve hot chocolate.
8. Visit people in a nursing home or at a children's hospital.
9. Perform little acts of kindness.
10. Start your own traditions.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Meme


1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? There's no excitement in opening up a present from a gift bag. Wrapping paper is the way to go! It's almost as exciting as opening up a man with lots of buttons.

2. Real tree or Artificial? The aroma of a real tree is awesome, but an artificial tree saves the forests and it is more economical because you can spend your money on presents instead.

3. When do you put up the tree? After Thanksgiving and hopefully before Christmas. LOL

4. When do you take the tree down? Christmas is not over until after the Three Kings come in January.

5. Do you like eggnog? Not really... We prefer Abuelita Hot Chocolate. It's a Christmas must.

6. Favorite gift received as a child? This doesn't specify if it was a Christmas present or not. We were too poor to receive Christmas presents when I was a child, but one time when I was sick an elderly woman from school came to our house and gave me a ceramic figurine of a little girl with a flowing dress and a bonnet. I don't remember who the woman was but her kind gesture is something I will always remember.

7. Hardest person to buy for? Mother. She will regift or come straight out and tell you she doesn't like it.

8. Easiest person to buy for? The children because they always tell you what they want. LOL

9. How do you decorate your tree--matchy-matchy or hodgepodge? Most of my ornaments are from the same designer. They are of fat mermaids, fat fish, seahorses, a frog prince. The others are not designer but they continue the sea theme. My brother bought me a starfish to put on the top of the tree, but Mother lost it and never gave it to me. I keep telling myself that I am going to go buy one, but I haven't taken myself to the Island in a long time.

10. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? I get lucky if I get to unwrap tamales. Should I buy my own gifts and act surprised?!

11. Favorite Christmas song? Santa Baby

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? While You Were Sleeping

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? In January. I like to shop throughout the year to make sure I don't get caught in that Christmas shopping mess.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No. I hang on to presents I don't like. LOL

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? tamales = food and unwrapping in one! LOL

16. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Doesn't matter as long as it is spent with Family.

17. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer? Was one of them named Chuy? LOL

18. What do you want to do for Christmas this year? It would be nice to stick to my original plans to visit with my daughter and her family in San Antonio, but if I don't get a job before Christmas, it will be more economical to stay here and continue to look for work.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

::Snow Princess::


It's funny that I have 90 followers but there's only a small handful who will  actually leave comments. I often wonder if they take the time to read what I write or if they just snag the graphics I make... 

Today, I met with the other candidates who are applying for jobs with the Census Bureau. As I filled out the application, I reconsidered applying for this job, because they ask you if you have ever been fired and if you owe the government any money (student loan) and did I mention that they say: READ THIS BEFORE YOU SIGN: If you don't tell the truth, we'll fire you if we hire you and you may be prosecuted if you are committing perjury for false information. Grrr... On the positive side, I am alive, I am available for work, and I do not have any criminal charges. 

I was a bit disappointed to miss some of the questions, but I scored a 90, which the woman said was very good.


Monday, December 21, 2009

::Meet Me Under The Mistletoe::


Christmas is on Friday, so I am going to try to add more Christmas tags this week. I couldn't resist this picture of Bridget and Mr. Darcy. I hope I did it justice. I love it when she says good boys don't kiss like that! Way to go, Mr. Darcy! LOL

The lady who interviewed me on Friday said I would hear something today, but I would like to think they are still deciding because I didn't get a call. 

I was a bit nervous about going to the employment office,  because I used to work for them, so there is always a chance that I will run into people who are going to ask: What are you doing now? Thank God all the people in front were people who don't know me... The pickings onsite were minimal... very minimal... Still, I applied for a couple of jobs today, and tomorrow, I have an employment test for a different job... 

The employment office is close to the St. Jude shrine, but there is construction closing off the street to the shrine, so I had to go all the way around. It is usually very quiet and peaceful at the shrine, but today, there was a child that was very, very loud... Whenever I hear children acting like that, I am grateful that I do not have litle kids... The child's loud screams was a definite sign that I was not going to be able to pray, so I went into the shop to look around. I was surprised that there was hardly anything for sale in the shop.. What happened?!# I bought a green candle and walked back to the shrine. Fortunately, the child was gone and so were his screams. Yay! I put a little bit of holy water all over my body , asking God to bless me so that I can continue to bless others and I blessed the candle, too, before I lit it and knelt down to pray, hoping to find a little bit of peace within myself.


P.S... One of my friends says what I have is valour. I like to think so. =.)

Valor/Valour... The quality of mind enabling one to face danger or hardship resolutely: braveness, courage, fearlessness, foritude, gallantry, heart, spirit, valiance, spunk, gutsiness... The quality or state of being heroic.

::Naughty Girl::


Looking at Christmas lights in the Valley is more like a "who done it" mystery. When I drive past the houses of people who have money, there is very little or no Christmas spirit in their yard. If there is anything at all, it will be decorated with white or clear lights around the edge of their houses and maybe a few trees or there might be some reindeer in the yard, but usually, there are no lights and no decorations at all. If I drive past the houses of the middle class, the lights are colorful and their Christmas tree is proudly displayed in the window. If I drive past the houses of the poor, the lights are colorful and the lawns are full of lighted displays of the Holy Family and/or Santa Claus and snowmen, etc.

In the homes of the people who have money, the money is probably spent to buy expensive presents instead of spending money in the yard. In the homes of the middle class, they are probably overloading their credit cards trying to have it all: tree, food, decorations, and presents. In the homes of the poor, there are probably few or no presents, because they are trying to make it seem like Christmas with what they have.

I cannot say that I believed in Santa Claus in my childhood or not.  All this talk about Naughty or Nice never made any sense to me, because no matter how nice you were all year, Santa never came to our house. For us, Christmas was about going to Midnight mass and the birth of the baby Jesus. At CCD, we would get a Christmas stocking with an orange and an apple and a handful of old-fashioned Christmas candy... but presents, we never got. We never questioned it and we never asked for presents. Perhaps that is why I never think about what I want for Christmas, because Christmas has never been about me. 

In my adulthood, I do believe in Santa. He still does not come to my house to leave presents for me, but Santa is not about presents. Santa is about the spirit of giving.  When it comes to Christmas giving, my thoughts turn to the children, because even if children live being poor everyday, they do not understand the concept of being so poor that Santa doesn't come to their house. Every Christmas, the first present we get should be a gift for a child who might not get present. It's not so much about getting the most expensive gift you can find, it is the thought that someone thought about them enough to get them something. Poor children seem to appreciate things so much more than a child who always has everything they need. I am a great believer in that children should not get everything they want. I am a great believer in teaching children how to appreciate what they have and in teaching them to be grateful, but even if you do not have money, there are always ways to make the day special for the little children.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

All I Want For Christmas


December 18 is my favorite day of the year... This year, I had my first interview after being fired in the same week! See how great that date is for me! I was very disappointed that it took half a tank of gas to get to and from the interview. I hope it will be the last time that I have to travel that far to look for work...

I went to sleep the night before, not knowing what I was going to wear (shocker)... I wore  a black tank with a cowl neckline, black pants, and a pinstripe jacket and boots. The closest jewelry within reach was a waterpearls necklace and earrings that I had worn recently, so I put that on. Basically God dressed me, because I ended up wearing whatever was clean and not wrinkled. LOL... When I sat down, there was a woman waiting to meet a child and her deaf sister. I was surprised that I was able to speak a little sign language with her. Then, a kid that I knew walked up to me. He was transferred from the shelter where I used to work. He couldn't believe that I had left the facility. Have I mentioned that the children at the shelter loved me? Kids know. Too bad adults can be such haters!

The woman who interviewed me was almost wearing the same outfit as I was. LOL... I have to say that the interview went well. I think I made a good impression, because when we talked about my reasons for not being at my job anymore, she said it really doesn't matter. Basically, I just told her that I was burned out from the driving distance everyday and that when I left the job on Tuesday, the feelings were mutual. Also, when she said that if I were to get the job, they would need my transcripts, she was impressed that I pulled them straight out of my briefcase. She was able to make copies right away and I signed papers for the background check.

After the interview, I was debating whether to go to Red Lobster or not, because the cost of a meal is like between a third or half of a week's groceries! It was exactly like that angel vs devil on my shoulders routine... Yes, in the end I gave in... I ordered water with lemon to cut costs. As I sat there eating my meal,the food was not as good as other Red Lobster restaurants that I have experienced. I paid my bill and purposely over-tipped the waitress because it is the Christmas holidays... How crazy is that when you have no income coming in? But when I came out of the restaurant, I had to laugh at myself, because God never ceases to surprise me...

A friend whom I used to work with came out of the same restaurant a few minutes after I did! I found her with no effort. I found her with God's effort! We exchanged phone numbers and she is going to write me a letter of recommendation. Yay! So I figure if God pushes you somewhere, go! The price of a meal at a restaurant when you have no income may sound stupid but the price of a letter of recommendation from a friend who believes in you, priceless! =.)


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Dear Santa: I Can Explain


Greetings! Yes, I got fired on Tuesday. The main boss really doesn't know the paperwork involved in case management so the way the Boss from Hell wrote it up, she made me look really bad, although it was minor stuff that could have probably been completed in an hour or two. Because I was planning to take three days vacation, I was busy trying to get as much done so I could turn in my remaining cases before the end of the week so the cases could be reviewed for approval while I was out.  But at 4:30, the main boss asked me in and the Boss from Hell was there, too. I was upset that they didn't allow me to keep the kids art. I had tons of it. They are jealous that the kids love me so much. They watched me pack and they walked me out. Fortunately, the kids were no longer in the building...

They actually did me a favor letting me go, because I was burned out with  my boss' bullying... and for the first time since this job began, I actually woke up in tears on Monday. She literally sucked the life out of me and crushed my spirit. The drive back and forth took two hours out of my day everyday, not to mention waking up so early just to get there in time.

I have never been as sick as often as I was at that job, and that's mostly because I never took a vacation the whole year I was there. It is amazing that I was unbelievably sick on Monday and Tuesday, sneezing and coughing like a dog. Yesterday, I took care of myself and actually rested. I couldn't go anywhere, because God has been crying for over a week. It has been cold and raining and raining. I can only imagine how flooded out Mother is.

I keep getting wet in the rain. Yesterday was so bad that I didn't go to the employment office, but I  requested three letters of recommendation from three of my friends. I hope they can write them up soon. I found an old paycheck, so I was able to figure out how much I was paid an hour. I revised my application and resume in the Work In Texas site and applied for three jobs. Then, I went to the grocery store last night, although it was still raining, but the price of my medications went up double the price! OMG... I bought some toilet paper and came home. LOL...

This morning, I applied for unemployment by telephone. I was on the phone for over 30 minutes. OMG @ I am going to have to buy more minutes for my phone. I don't know how this is going to work, because I usually only use my minutes for emergency and I talk to my daughter for a little while on the weekends...

Well, today, I was surprised to get a phone call from one of the places where I applied. I have an interview in the morning. They are opening a new center in the town where I currently live, but the interview will be all the way to Brownsville, which is an hour and a half from here. Grrr... I hope it is not raining tomorrow. I also have a test for a different job on the 22nd.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

::Tease the Season::


It finally happened... the She-Devils finally got their way. So tomorrow is the start of a new life for me... It's kind of scary to be without income again, but I feel relieved to leave the nightmare of working there behind me. The problem, of course, will be money... I will not be able to pay for rent and my car, so I need to get serious about packing to get my things into storage and to get out of this apartment by the end of January. 


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Waiting for Santa

Last Wednesday after work, I went to find an outfit for Saturday. That was hard, because there wasn't much to pick from and/or the items were either too big or too small. Most of the red or Christmasy items had a red ticket, so I had to settle for holiday festive. That was hard, too, because all I could find was a tank top with silver sequins at the neckline. I matched it up with a black ruffled wrap sweater and a black flippy skirt and silver accessories. After trying on so many things in the dressing room, I was too exhausted to try my final choice on, so I just hoped for the best and came home.

On Friday, I read somewhere that if you are bloated, beano can shed like three to four inches off your waistline overnight! OMG! Well, there's nothing wrong with checking it out, so I bought something similar at the store with hopes that it would do it's magic. The pharmacist explained that when you get gas in your intestines, it's like a huge bubble. This medication acts like an efferdecent. It breaks up the big bubble into a lot of little bubbles so that it is easier to come out. LOL...

On Saturday, I put on my makeup and fixed my curly hair, as best as it would allow, added a little rhinestone hairclip on the left side, and wiggled myself into a pair of pantihose. I wore my black hoodie with some jeans and my black pumps. When I got to the store, I went looking for some tops that I was considering to buy and put them on hold. Then, I went into the dressing room to change into my outfit. Well, it wasn't the best, but considering what I had to work with, it met the rules! When I came out, I noticed that all of the dressing rooms were full! One lady was wearing the red top I liked inside a pencil skirt, but they made her take it off, because it had a red tag. The bad part was that she had only minutes to find a new outfit. OMG at I am glad that wasn't me!

So, we finally lined up. I think they went by outfit, because the line went from Christmasy to holiday festive to non-holiday dressy to casual everyday wear.  There were eleven of us in all shapes and sizes. I was second in line. The first girl was wearing a red and black dress with a black shrug.  As per our directions, she walked to the right, stopped and posed while the photographers took pictures, walked to the middle, stopped and posed for more pictures, and then walked to the left to pose for the audience and for more pictures. There were a few customers in chairs watching us. Then, it was my turn. I was a bit more "top model," remembering Tyra Banks "fierce" runway suggestions, although not as extreme... After all, I AM in the Valley. LOL... I stopped and posed to the right, went to the middle, posing with the silver purse in my hands with my legs apart, and ended with a Marilyn Monroe pose on the left. Because there was no applause for the first model, I was surprised that there was applause for me, and a lady in the audience commented that I did "really good."  So then the other girls go up to model, but I didn't see them, because I was already at the end of the line. On the second round, we went in pairs. This was hard because all of this was unrehearsed and I couldn't see what the other girl was doing, but I got through it. On the third round, we just walked around the runway so the audience could see our outfits. OMG... so does this mean that I am Fashion Bug's next top model! LOL... I was really surprised at all the sales the store got from our modeling, so I guess we did really good.

In the end, I didn't buy the outfit I wore, but I got 30% off all regular-priced items that I wanted to buy. The red top had a red ticket, so I had to hunt for another red ticket item at the same price so I could get the second item at half price. 

So... I bought the red top with red roses at the neckline, the tank with silver sequins at the neckline that I modeled at the fashion show, a turquoise print top with silver embroidery and sequins at the neckline, a purple top with 3/4 sleeves and black roses on the left side, and a black velour hoodie, all for under $100 after taxes! OMG at Winivere models hard for the money! LOL @ not buying anything new all year, Winivere finally has some new things!


P.S... The drama at work continues... I have to meet with my boss every Friday so she can review my files every week. I hate it. People in the Valley have a different way of thinking. At this job, the only way to survive is to be passive, submissive, shut up, and do what you are told. As far as relationships with a man in this area, there is no difference: be passive, submissive, shut up, and do what you are told... Sometimes, or should I say: most times, I just want the ground to swallow me up.

Thank God for the modeling I did on Saturday! It was a lot of fun and a welcomed little escape from all that drama at work! =.)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Some of My BEST Friends are FLAKES


I haven't been feeling very creative lately... It could be because I am sick with a cold, but I think it is mostly because I am in a funk...

It was shocking to hear from the people I interviewed with from Corpus Christi. They wanted me to return for a second interview, but I was home sick and I really don't have time to take off.  I have missed too much time being sick already.  I've already been approved for three days off during Christmas week... so I think I missed the boat at getting on board that $12/an hour job. LOL@ I guess it's no big deal if that's all the job offers. ..At least, I know they were interested in me. =.)

I am still on probation at work, because I was unprofessional at making the company look bad by telling someone that I bought my own supplies. My current boss continues to go through my stuff with a fine-toothed comb and she plans to evaluate me soon. Grrr... I am burned out at the way I am treated at this job... But what direction can I take on this twisted fork in the road?! What else can I do that will pay me a decent salary? St. Anthony, please help me to find something better that is closer to home...