Friday, February 28, 2014

Community of Two

Last week, we tried out our first themed pub quiz. And the theme was Community!

[Sidenote: whoever chose to hold a Community quiz on a Thursday is a moron. All of the Thursday regulars are at trivia when it airs on TV so we don't watch the show. Pick a different day so your regulars would at least stand a chance of doing okay.]

If you can't gather from my little side note, spoiler alert, it was not a good night to be on my team. Most of my trivia team didn't even want to try (because it's a pay to play quiz with the winner taking the pot), but Dan and I had never been to a themed quiz so we thought we would try it out.

Let me just say this: I do like Community a lot, but I haven't really watched the last couple of seasons since pub quiz interferes. So, after I got home from work on the day of the quiz, I studied the Community wikipedia page for half an hour and attempted to watch one episode. I say 'attempt' because I only got ten minutes in before Hulu froze. Fortunately, literally seconds before it froze, it told me an answer to one of the quizzes questions.

Even with that answer, though, we only scored 34 points, less than half of an average night of quiz. And the only reason we didn't come in dead last was because one team left before the final rounds of questions.

But you'd never know that from our excited faces, right?

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Monday, February 24, 2014

Project House Update: Such a Fan of Your Work

I've never really had a problem with the fan in our living room, but for some reason, it always really annoyed Dan. Maybe because it was a little too small for the space or because it was four bladed or because it looked a little cheap or because the browns of the fan didn't really match the brown of the surrounding wood.

You know, lots of little things quickly stacked up in his brain.

So, a couple of months ago, Home Depot had the ceiling fan we have in our bedroom on sale for only $50 and Dan could not refuse.

It sat in our laundry room until this past weekend when it finally got cracked open. Turned out the mounting between the old fan and the ceiling wasn't as strong as it should have been. This complicated things because it meant it couldn't be as easy as pulling the old one down and putting the new one up.

This required pulling the angled piece of wood down from the ceiling, which Dan accidentally broke in the process. After gluing it back together, he routed it out so the new, stronger mounting would fit within it.

And a last minute trip to Home Depot for the last 18 inch stainless steel down rod. 

I do have to admit, this new fan looks so much better than the old one.

I hate having to admit when Dan is right.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Fan of Friday: Week of 2/21/2014

Hi, my name is Carolyn, and I'm a youtube addict.

My new show of choice? TableTop on Geek and Sundry. Basically, it's just Wil Wheaton and three of his friends playing boardgames you've mostly likely never heard of, unless you're into that sort of thing, but if you are, then you clearly already know about this show.

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And, spoiler alert, Wil Wheaton almost never wins.

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It's actually a great way to learn about new group games. My husband and I don't play a lot of games together because I get insanely competitive, but it's much easier to put that aside when it's a game that is new to both of us.

And it's nice to learn about group games that aren't just based on playing cards or Apples to Apples.

Most of the games are competitive strategy based games where you have a set of skills and try to be the first to complete some sort of goal, but they do play some team games and even cooperative games where the goal is to just survive the scenario together.

I inadvertly got Dan hooked on the channel, too, and we then went out and bought Settlers of Catan to play with my mom and my sister.

So, if you've got 30 minutes to kill, I highly recommend watching the video where they play the Star Trek version.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Executive Office

I've had an office for a couple of months now and it has been this unexpected boost to my career. It's been absolutely great.

Just as a bit of a recap, back in October, my coworkers and I were moved from our bull pen of cubicles to individual offices so that a lab could take over our space. With the lay-offs last summer, there were plenty of offices, so we all occupied our own hallway.

I was worried about offices at first because it would mean less overflow traffic for me. You see, when we were in cubicles, everyone had to walk past me to get to the mechanical lead engineer, so if he wasn't in, they would ask me. In the offices, though, this would change.

However, this worked out well. People stopped treating me like the lead's secretary, asking me where he was when he wasn't in.

Also, having an office has given me an air of authority. Especially given how I've laid it out.

I've created a command center. Two desks with computers that I can swivel between and my back is never to the door so people can't sneak up on me. Eliminating being jumpy apparently works for me.

Oh and speaker phone! I love speaker phone. No longer pressing the phone to my head for several hours a day just as to not annoy my coworkers.

With my own home base, I feel much less lost. I no longer feel like the scared little fish in the big pond. It's given me a little cave to retreat to when things get tense.

And keeping with the pond theme, it'll be real high class once I hang up the large duck print behind my desk that I bought at a garage sale. You know, once I bring it in one weekend. I'd still like to upgrade the guest chair, but I've been advised to not invest too much in your office. I'm not sure why, though. Maybe to not be seen as sucking up? I don't know why, but I'd still love a cozy vintage arm chair.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Fan of Friday: Week of 2/14/2014

Seriously, if you haven't seen 'Frozen' yet, are you living under a rock? Go! Go now! Go see it!

And once you've seen it, go see it again in the Sing-a-Long version! It's group kareoke, y'all!

Don't worry if you don't like singing in public. Just do what we did and go see the late show on a weeknight. It was almost completely empty, minus a group of college kids who sat in the very front. We sat in the very back and each group happily ignored each other.

Also, if you're looking for something a little less princess-y (I was going to say 'girly', but 'Frozen' really isn't that girly, it's just Disney-y and princess-y), try out the 'Lego' movie. I don't what the writers of that movie were on, but it's a trip in such a weird way, but it all ties up so beautifully in the last 20 minutes.

And lastly, I love that movies have gotten smart and started making interactive movie posters. I mean, how awesome do I look as Captain America. Nailed it.

Yeah, movies, awesome...

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine's Day Dressing

While Dan and I don't have any plans officially set in stone yet, Valentine's Day is quickly heading our way. I have let him off the hook, presents wise, but he will be forced to spend time with me. Since it falls on a Friday, and more importantly, a Friday that Dan is working, we'll probably car pool into work together and come up with a plan on the fly after work. A betting man would put money on a simple dinner and movie kind of night.

However, I do have a trick up my sleeve: an outfit change at work. The great thing about having my own office now [link] is that I no longer have to awkwardly change in the ladies' room. I've been looking for an excuse to break out my $8 Target sale dress and this'll 1) make it kind of a surprise for Dan since I won't be wearing it in the morning and 2) let me wear more comfortable, functional clothes all day before changing right before leaving.

It's not a pink and red cutesy Valentine's Day outfit, but it's a little more subtle, a little more adult and sexy. And it will inherently include a back-up saner version of shoes from the day outfit in case this unplanned evening ends up including any walking. It's not worth the torture of trying to walk in heels.

Monday, February 10, 2014

State of the Baby Boys

Rather than sit on the top of the couch like a normal cat, with the direction of the couch, this is how Rusty sits.

It's adorable, but this is why we can't have nice things.

Also, with my new camera, I finally have some good pictures of Sam. He's no longer a twitchy blur. Photographic evidence of his cuteness.

Yep, officially a crazy cat lady.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

A Good Start to a Weird Year

Welp, my birthday has officially come and gone. And it was kind of a weird one. Not in a bad way, at all, but just odd.

Usually, I get very emotional around my birthday. I always get my hopes up too high and end up disappointed, but this year was different.

For the past two years, I've taken the day of birthday off from work and done random things to celebrate. However, this year, things are so absolutely insane at work, I couldn't escape. Being trapped at work forced me to keep my expectations low and it turned out to be a much nicer day than I would have thought.

On the day of, Dan took me out for lunch. I hadn't been to Chuy's in over 15 years, but there's one near where I work and they apparently have an unlimited chips and salsa bar, so it was a great lunch.

That night, before trivia, my family gathered at my parent's house and I opened presents. Then the whole crazy lot of us went to trivia, my parent's first time.

It was really great. It kind of turned into a little birthday part for me. My friends gave me great little trinkets, like a Han Solo chocolate bar from Sean and Emily, a stuffed giraffe from Mitch, some dinosaur gummies from David, and a manicure set from Mary.

The official day of celebrating with me and Dan was done on Saturday. In a lovely twist of fate, it rained. Of course it rained on the day we had all sorts of stuff planned outside. Dan's plan went out the window and we kind of made it up as we went. It started with a coffee run to Starbucks, a trip to Target for supplies for a picnic lunch, and driving the eight mile loop at Saguaro National Park with a picnic under the ramadas at the end of the loop. However, everything under the ramadas were wet, too, so we ate a bit of a snack, standing around, I threw a bit of a fit about the rain ruining everything, and we went for small hike in the rain, out of pure stubbornness. We then headed back to the house, ate our lunch inside, and I proceeded to pass out. Girl was soooo tired. Ended up taking like a three hour nap on the couch with the baby cats. We had a dinner of take-out Chinese food, for the new year, and watched "Escape From New York". I still may make Dan take me out for a nice dinner this weekend. but no place is really coming to mind.

Now on to the important part, the presents! From my in-laws, I got this adorable bird sweater. They actually gave it to me at Christmas so I've worn it a couple of times.

From my sister, I got a dinosaur sweatshirt, a berry candle, some strawberry socks, and a leaf necklace. From my parent's, I got a map shirt, some bird earrings, and a teal dress. My mom also made a giant batch of chocolate strawberries that I've been trying to eat as fast as possible before they go bad. Dan got me a striped dress, a dinosaur t-shirt, the complete set of Terminator movies, and some new fancy SD card for my new camera. And oddly enough, a Mara Jade action figure from my boss. 

It was a great little birthday.