Sorry for the mess

I apologize for the mess! We just returned from a camping trip with friends in the Eastern Sierra Nevadas. We camped out in Tinnemaha Creek Campground. It was a short but sweet trip. I’ve never been out in the Eastern Sierra Nevadas. The landscape here is quite interesting — desert life in the foreground and high icy mountains in the background. I would love to explore other parts of the Eastern Sierras such as Mono Lake, Manzanar, and the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.

Continue reading Sorry for the mess

Maybe I’m just cynical…

Wrapping up

I’m wrapping up the final two weeks at work. I was able to move my jury duty another 6 months which was so much better. At the time my supervisor was anticipating my last day of work would be yesterday. From Monday to Wednesday, I was working on overdrive and cleaning up my area. I was also visiting daycares before work just in case I got called in and she needed a daycare. The days felt really long. When I finally registered for jury duty on Wednesday night, there was an option to postpone so I pushed it back as far as I could. That being said, my last day at my job will be on April 15th.

Continue reading Maybe I’m just cynical…

On to the next thing

** Warning: Long post **

I put in my two-week notice and decided to go with Employer #1.

Where did I leave off? Well, I withheld the news last that Employer #1 gave me an offer last Thursday. I received the offer letter 20 minutes before my scheduled interview with Employer C (Current Employer) for the assistant hospital administrator position. At the time I was very confident with the outcome with Employer C. I had support from my supervisor and the person who held the previous position who were confident I would do well if I got the job. It would have been a leapfrog of a promotion, I would have gone from a position that is a step below a director to someone who is a step above a director. If you called me back to Earth, you’d shake me and say “It’s a major reach! You’re disturbing the pecking order — that’s not how it works!”

Continue reading On to the next thing

Door number 1, 2, and 3

** Warning: Long Post **

I just see a person

On Saturday my husband is off to a robotics competition. He’s a coach/mentor for a local high school. BIL #1 and BIL #2 are going to see their mom since it is her birthday. They offered to bring Lana because it would be nice for her to see her grandmother and it would free me up, but I told them she had dance classes and we had other plans. Honestly, I am less enthused about Lana going to MIL’s birthday because I am still bitter about that one spontaneous visit where she compared her with her cousins. But that was only part of it.

Continue reading Door number 1, 2, and 3

Play hard

The Comparison game

I think one of the worst things a parent, a grandparent, or a relative could do to a child is to compare them with other children. I am thankful my parents never did that. I am also thankful my parents advised me to never compare myself to other people. I am sure I started this self-flagellation of comparing myself to others as early as elementary school…maybe even sooner? I think into my 20s it was pretty bad because I was concerned about career and life satisfaction. Now in my 30s, I am actively fighting against it.

Continue reading Play hard

Let’s have vaccine clinics in the lobby!

Happy Friday everyone! This week flew by — thank goodness! A lot has developed over the past week especially at work. Visitors seeing patients staying at the in-patient floors must have COVID vaccine or COVID negative test in the last 72 hours. The lines to the information desk are getting long. I think maybe while we are at it, we should have a vaccine clinic at all our lobby areas so if they get turned away, they can get vaccinated and not leave feeling empty-handed.

Also at work, all employees (including volunteers and contractors) at my work must have the COVID vaccine by September 30th. If they don’t get vaccinated, they can’t go to work. I’m not sure what the ultimate decision will be for those who won’t vaccinate. Is this an experiment to get more employees vaccinated? In the meantime, unions are negotiating for those who continue to not vaccinate to do weekly COVID tests in order for them to continue working but my employer will remain rigid with their decision. There is an exemption but that applies if the person is reported to get an anaphylactic shock from the vaccine. Honestly I don’t mind that my work won’t budge. As someone working for a public employer, is it financially responsible for tax payer dollars to continue to pay for employee COVID tests? Have my coworkers seen how much COVID tests cost? Also, I’m tired of holding the secondary title of contact tracer at work — it eats up a lot of time from my regular duties.

Continue reading Let’s have vaccine clinics in the lobby!

DIY vs. Delegate

This is the weekend I finally catch up on sleep. My husband came back from training — which was a relief. But of course he’s catching up on sleep this weekend because he’s going back to work to his regular job on Monday. I’ll admit the last two weeks were difficult — especially when Lana was sick and then I was sick. When my husband is away, I like to use that time to work on a bunch of projects — it could be an art project to display in the dining room, plant something in the front yard, etc. But lately I’ve been too tired to do basic things.

Continue reading DIY vs. Delegate

Working on my daily three

Happy weekend coffee share! So I wanted to do a recap of how my three tasks a day experiment has been going so far. The practice is pretty simple: I write no more than three tasks per day on my work planner for work-related tasks and I do the same on my day planner for my non-work related items. If you see my work planner before, you would find a ridiculously long tasks lists containing mix of high- and low-priority items. On my day planner, my task lists were starting to look more like wish lists of things I wanted to do.

Here is what I learned so far:

It’s not about doing less and being lazy, it’s about setting boundaries — especially at work.

Listing three high priority work items sets intention for my work day. But there are days when something happens that calls my attention (per my supervisor) and all of the sudden there’s about an hour left in the work day. From there, I want to take a brief moment to breathe…. and then a volunteer stands by my door asking if I’m busy. I take another breath and I look at my list shocked by how I did not make any effort to do anything on my daily three. I look at the volunteer profusely apologizing for not being able to help her right now but she could send me an e-mail. Thankfully, she was very understanding because there have been some who would NOT take that as an acceptable answer.

It’s ok to have recurring tasks even if they’ve been there daily for the last several weeks because they’re clearly very important

Everyday for the past several weeks on my work planner I listed “write letter of recommendation.” This will continue up until the beginning of November because I have MANY volunteers who are applying to medical school, P.A. school, nursing school, graduate school, undergraduate, etc. It’s in my daily three because I would HATE to miss a deadline for something so important to them.

Other recurring tasks were around events and projects I managed. For example, this past Thursday, I had this large event. A month leading up to this event, I wrote on my work planner the name of that event everyday up to the day of. I wanted to make sure I still had it on my mind to finalize the details, confirm RVSPs, etc. I knew this event would have gotten lost in the shuffle of other things and suddenly re-emerge itself the week of if I did not write it down on my daily three everyday this month.

For home, I write exercise on my daily three everyday because I know I forget to exercise on most days. It’s clearly important to me since I spend a lot of my time sitting on a desk. Other recurring tasks I’ve had at some point was watering my newly installed plants daily for the first several weeks until established.

Spreads my to-dos throughout the week.

Maybe this is more beneficial for my home life. Why do I let myself believe I can do a million tasks in a day when I can just spread it throughout the week in groups of three? The daily three makes each day more digestible.

It looks like my daily three for work and for home will be here to stay!

Photo by MART PRODUCTION on Pexels.com

How do you manage your tasks at work and at home? Comment below!

Happy late weekend coffee share post!

Happy late weekend coffee share post — it’s been a busy weekend for me. I started my Saturday morning going to the gym — nowadays it’s the only time I go to the gym. Sure I exercise from home, but I enjoy going to the gym to socialize and chat with my fellow gym buddies. After the gym, I finally did my exam for the internship position. The deadline is this Monday at 5PM and I knew Saturday was going to be my only free day and I needed a clear head to complete the exam. There were a few difficult parts that required me to take a few mental health breaks in between (thank god). After I completed my exam, I expected to get a score. It is an online exam after all… But we shall see…

Today is our first Father’s Day. My family came over to visit and we did our potluck lunch. I made a matcha cake with white chocolate whipped cream. It’s my first attempt making a cake not from a box mix. We have leftovers, so grab some yourself! I will do a post about this matcha cake this week. I do want to mention that I messed up on the frosting — I whipped it for too long and it started turning into buttercream.

Matcha cake with white chocolate frosting green tea

What a week!

Happy weekend everyone! And I have to say, I could not wait until this week was over. This week was incredibly unpredictable life-wise. So how did this week go for me?

Sunday: After much discussion, we decided to buy a new (used) car. One of my husband’s brothers was interested in getting our car so my husband was putting in new parts to prepare the car to only come across something that was beyond his skillset. So I called a mechanic to come over to take a look. We did not want to go through the trouble of getting a tow if there was a mobile mechanic in our neighborhood. Unfortunately he was unavailable to stop by that day so we waited until Monday morning.

Monday: I told my supervisor that I was going to be late and would likely take a Lyft ride to work after the mechanic comes by to check out the car and possibly fix it. The mechanic arrived later than scheduled (he informed me in advance). He does not have the part and said he’d return either later that evening or the following day. My husband kindly bought the part on the way home thinking it would make the mechanic’s life much easier so it can be fixed later that evening. That never happened. In terms of getting the work, I ended up not going after speaking with my supervisor. I would pay anywhere between $70-$80 roundtrip to do less than 4 hours of work in the office. If there buses and trains ran more frequently, I would have taken that to work. Also my supervisor reminded me that all next week she’ll be on vacation so it was best I took the day off which I did, but I did not go anywhere.

Tuesday: My husband works from home so he could wait for the mechanic to arrive and I can go to work. I took a Lyft ride to work. My husband told me the mechanic came by and he thought the mechanic told us the car needed a new bolt yesterday, not a new bolt and nut. My husband went through the trouble to buying a new bolt for the mechanic thinking he would have likely completed the job earlier. Anyways my husband decided if the car needed a new bolt and nut he could have done it himself. It was good we consulted with a mechanic to only learn the repair was not beyond my husband’s skillset. Also, we saved a lot of money since we are buying a new car. The cost of the repair was just as much as a car payment. Cost of a Lyft ride from home to work: $92 for a roundtrip. That does not include the tip.

Wednesday: We bought a new car! No Lyft rides for now…also significantly less gas trips for a while because we bought a plug-in hybrid! Total cost of Lyft ride: $94. The trip was from home to work, then from work to car dealership. These Lyft receipts are so painful to look at.

Thursday: Daycare called to tell me I had to pull Lana out early because they saw a rash. They said that Lana could only return to daycare until she saw a doctor and we get a doctor’s note stating that her rash is not contagious. We went home early and waited for the 4:30 pm video consult. My supervisor gave me approval to work from home for the day so I did not have to use my PTO. I was exhausted but I am not going to join these groups of working mom who complain how hard it is to work from home while having small children at home. I’ll admit it is hard, but I refuse to contribute to these sentiments. For part of my job, I interview people coming from the GAIN (Greater Avenues to Independence) program for one-year paid internship positions. The candidates coming from the GAIN program are from low socioeconomic backgrounds and are young parent(s). Every time I hear someone who complains how hard it is to work from home or how hard it is to work from home with a kid, I cringe because I think about my interviews with the GAIN candidates. In the interview they would tell me how they would like an opportunity to work in an office. They want stable hours and a less physically demanding job.

Friday: I returned to work. Lana’s rash was NOT contagious.

I applied for this Administrative Internship through my work earlier this week. I heard back that my application is moving forward in the selection process and I complete Part II on Monday. It’s not an interview, just another assessment. I guess it is a nice way to end this week. The Administrative Intern program is a two-year full-time paid internship through my current employer. I would perform analyst assignments in a variety of public offices within the county like public health, health services, parks and rec, etc. I still intend to apply for the Management Fellow which is very similar where it is paid and it’s also a two year program, but the level of work is much higher and requires the candidates to have a Master’s Degree. But the Management Fellow applications won’t open up until towards the end of the year and the acceptance rate is much, much lower than the Administrative Internship.

Anyways, we can’t predict the future. If we did, then we’d all be rich and solve the world’s problems.

Turkish Coffee

This weekend’s coffee is Turkish coffee to pummel myself. I ate too many sweets yesterday :-/.

I highly encourage people to participate in this month’s “Eat Around the World” challenge to submit dishes around celebration! Cooking skills are not required. Funny thing, as someone who raves about home cooking, I have yet to post a celebration dish I’ve made. Maybe soon…

Things are about to get slower (please?)

Yesterday I worked at the community COVID vaccine clinic. Yesterday we saw more than 1000 patients (final count is still to be determined). It felt relatively less busy than the times we had served near 2000 patients on a Saturday. Maybe we’ve become more streamlined after each iteration of the Saturday vaccine clinic we can handle large crowds. Maybe as more retailers like Walmart and CVS have offered to become a COVID vaccine clinic it lessened our load.

If there were less patients coming to the clinic, it does to necessarily mean it is a failure. It could mean that we are about getting to the point where we have vaccinated all the people who have been seeking the vaccine. To date, more than 200 million people who have received the vaccine and 103 million people who are fully vaccinated in the U.S. In LA County there are 4.5 million people who have received the vaccine and about 3 million who are fully vaccinated. It does not mean our work stops here, we also need to get vaccinate those who are below 15 years old. We need to motivate the people who are vaccine hesistant.

Oh yeah speaking of which, other factors are the Johnson and Johnson pause. That did no good with the public perception to get the vaccines.

Surprisingly, in our experience a lot of young people are less likely to get the vaccine. Though there is a trend in COVID among younger people, they diminish it as the “common cold” and it will just pass through.

Then there’s the spread of misinformation about the vaccine. I don’t want to list it here because I absolutely do not endorse it.

See, we have a lot of work to do.

Even though we did not see as many patients yesterday as we did the last few Saturday community clinics, I am EXHAUSTED. But I’ve been exhausted since the beginning of the pandemic. I am hoping the fruits of our labor will pay off. We are a few steps to reaching normalcy. Nowadays, I’ve been lounging in more coffee shops people watching. I can walk outside as a vaccinated person without a mask. Please don’t take it away from us.

Black coffee from Tierra Mia in Los Angeles. I primarily drink my coffee black. If I am feeling indulgent, then I’ll make it a latte or add some flavor.

Another Weekend Coffee Share post hosted by Natalie the Explorer!

A for Appreciation (Lens-Artists Photo Challenge)

Lens-Artist Photo Challenge for the week is sharing a photo(s) featuring a subject that begins with the letter “A”.

This week’s alphabet challenge is “Appreciation.

For the past several months at the hospital, we received an outpour of donations and thank you letters from the community. I work in patient relations and employee engagement, I manage these donations making sure all hospital staff gets something and is distributed equitably. It is not just people in scrubs who are affected by the pandemic — there are janitors who clean up public areas and patient rooms, lab workers who test patient samples for COVID-19, and clerks who interface with everybody. Then you also have the staff members in outpatient clinics. Though they may not deal with COVID patients directly they’ve been short on staff because staff have either transferred to work in the COVID units, called out sick, gone on leave, or been offered an early retirement. Everyone who works in a hospital plays a part, everyone is affected.

“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and loved more than you’ll ever know.” — A.A. Milne