Parenting, twins, life, work and worries.

Posts Tagged ‘Work’

Celebrity customers make my day slightly less dull!

Posted by shinymac on April 24, 2008

Oh how I’ve neglected this place of late!
It’s been forever since I wrote here, or at least, that’s what it feels like.

Things haven’t been particularly hectic, or busy, or stressful, I just didn’t feel the need to write as much over the last few weeks, and for that, I am sorry.

To top it all, nothing of any great excitement has actually happened in my mundane life. I get up, I do bits of housework and washing, look after two hilarious 4 year old daughters, eat a few things, and then get ready for work.

Then I go to work, get incredibly bored, and then get the same bus home with the same driver and the same people. The same old thing each and every day, and now it’s actually only 4 months to go until I can leave. I am hoping that as it will be summer, and I love summer, it will just whizz by and I won’t even realise where the time went. I kind of doubt this will happen though, because when you’re not particularly enjoying the moment, the moment drags.

I can’t complain in terms of meeting people, as most of the people I work with are great, and furthermore; we get to meet and serve the occasional celebrity!
In the last 2 months or so, I have met and advised Sherrie Hewson (ex-Coronation Street actress, now a regular feature on Loose Women for all you daytime TV addicts in the UK!), Kieran Cunningham who is a rugby league player for St Helens, and only last night we were graced with the custom of the one and only Ray Quinn, who came second in the X Factor (beaten by Leona Lewis a year or 2 ago). So it can be exciting at times, I guess.

My eyes are letting me down now, so it’s time to switch off, forget about work and get some well deserved rest. After all, I need to look fresh incase the next celebrity who pops in for some Euros turns out to be someone like Russell Brand!


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Trains, buses and trams = stress

Posted by shinymac on March 3, 2008

I have returned from a lovely weekend away. I decided some time ago that I would whisk the kids up to Scotland for a break whilst I’ve got time off from work, so we booked bargain fares on the train, and went on Thursday.

I took my little notebook/diary type thing, thinking that a 2 hour train journey would allow me plenty of time to scribble away and take notes, and instead, I ended up with earache from two 4 year olds who couldn’t stop showing me their drawings of trains, sheep and people. It was a good journey though, and we all had plenty of food to munch on that we’d made and packed earlier in the day.

Once we got to Carlisle, we had a wait of around 15 minutes for my aunty to come and collect us, and as we drove over the border, we encouraged the kids to cheer and wave their arms about. They sat there stony-faced and silent, and would not even smile. (They were being incredibly shy!)

We chilled out at her house, and waited for Stevie to come home from school. She walked in all grown up and tall, and totally changed from the last time I saw her, all contributing to my feeling old. From then on, I never saw my kids! They followed poor Stevie and her friend Shannon all over the place, and I started to feel as though I’d lost some limbs! I have to admit however, that I did enjoy it, it felt like a bit of a break, and I relaxed knowing that they were safe in Stevie’s hands.

We had a chinese, we had drinks, we had visits to shops where I found some plain cheap plimsols I’d wanted for ages, and I even managed to squeeze a night out in, where I discovered the most gorgeous garlic mayonnaise, which lingered the next day regrettably. All in all, we had a great time, and I can’t wait to go back again, or for them to come and visit us in Manchester.

Unfortunately, the end of a relaxing break tends to lead to stress, and this was no truer than the events of yesterday and today.
We got to Carlisle to discover there were no trains running whatsoever, due to high winds causing a freight train to blow all over the tracks on our route. So, we were faced with a coach journey to Preston. As the coach filled up, the driver came out to tell me that there were 2 seats left, but they were separate. Now, anyone who knows my children would know that there is no way in the world they would sit away from me, next to a stranger on a huge bus that they’ve never been on before, and I explained this to him, using “they’ll cry their eyes out” as the clincher. Thankfully, he asked some kind man if he would move, and the 3 of us squeezed into two seats together. As we drove past countless grazing sheep and the beauty of the Lake District, Evie had a little snooze on my knee, as Marley sprawled out in the seat she had all to herself. We ate chocolates and drank Ribena, and finally we reached Preston, where we had to get a train.
When this train pulled into Manchester Victoria, we went to the tram stop for our tram home. We waited, and we waited, and we waited, for what felt like hours, and no Altrincham trams came by. Eventually, we decided to just get on a Piccadilly one (ticketless!), and change there to get home (with ticket!).

We walked home from the tram stop, laden down with suitcases and bags galore, looking like a trio of pack-horses trudging through the town, and poor Marley gave in and fell over sending her little tartan suitcase and a Tweenies bag flying over the concrete.

Finally, we got home, and bursting for wees and so hungry, we discovered my Mothers Day presents. 2 books I’d wanted for a while, which is better than chocolates when you’re trying to lose weight!
Alex came home soon after us, with a pizza in hand, and smiles and cuddles for the kids. Oh, how they had missed him, and this was so evident when they saw his car pull up and ran to the door shouting “WOO-HOOOOO!”.

Today has provided me with further stress. I’ve found out I can’t have the time off I wanted incase we manage to get tickets for Glastonbury, or manage to find work at Glastonbury, and my work have such ridiculous rules regarding it, that I feel like telling them to shove the job up their bums. It’s complicated to explain, but they have holiday “ceilings” which means only so many people within the store from certain departments can have time off at the same time, but our department are grouped together regardless of whether you work days or nights, and also with the office, who have nothing to do with our staffing. It’s not like we cover their work or they cover ours! So I am not happy, and I’ve told my boss this. I don’t know if this will help, I think the only thing that will help will be to leave. Yes, that would help my sanity, but may not help my purse.

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A possibility

Posted by shinymac on February 19, 2008

Today has been Monday, incase you were wondering, and it’s been awful. First of all, I slept in a little this morning, only to be woken up by my mobile phone ringing. I ignored it as I didn’t recognise the number.
Then when I came round, I found I had no energy, and aching limbs. For goodness sake, I’ve only just got over the worst cold in the world, and now I feel achy and lethargic and constantly tired.
So, I toiled with the idea of ringing work and declaring myself sick, for all of 5 minutes, then remembered that my colleague Michaela has recently been given a written warning for time off sick, and has lost out on her bonus and is not allowed to transfer or apply for other jobs. Scrap that, I’d rather go in on my death bed than have to miss out on my bonus or any opportunity to transfer my butt out of there!
So, I went into work, after forcing myself to bath the kids, wash up the dishes and tidy a bit, and arrived to find that there were 3 of us in our section, meaning one of us has to go off somewhere else, as it only has to be dual control, and there are only 2 serving windows.
I ended up on Menswear for half an hour, half an hour I can handle, but this was the longest half an hour I’ve ever had to endure, and I was bored and kept thinking “so this is what I’ve been reduced to? Shop-work”.

Lately, I am all over the place in terms of what I want to do. I have no direction, yet I have brains. I don’t have relevant qualifications, due to being forced into quitting University, and I just don’t seem to be able to get anywhere.
From time to time, I scour the internet in the hope that some amazing job in a publishers proofreading, or editing, or just simply reading for a living, with 8 weeks holiday and a salary of 30k a year will jump out and scream “YOU CAN DO ME!” but this never happens.
A few days ago, I found a job online with a company called Meltwater News, and the title is Trainee International Manager. Sounds good, but I am always wary of these Trainee Manager positions after I went for a Trainee Sales and Marketing Manager position after quitting Uni, and ended up traipsing around Sale centre with some poor student guy, carrying extremely large sports bags brimming with goods and selling them business to business. I lasted a couple of hours, and would have stuck it out for the whole day had my shoes not been killing me.
However, this Meltwater one sounds genuine, their website looks professional, and they have offices worldwide. It does state that the training will involve a high volume of sales, which I am not 100% sure about, as I am not naturally a pushy person. I am not sure what the salary would be, or if it will be some kind of OTE salary, which may put me off a bit.

I did apply though, and they called me this morning and left me a voicemail….. the number I did not recognise as I awoke. That was them. And now I am too scared to ring them back incase I end up traipsing around Sale with some poor student guy and two huge big sports bags brimming with goods. I’ll have to ensure I wear flat shoes to the interview if I’m invited for one.

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If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.

Posted by shinymac on January 23, 2008

Ooh, where to begin. I’ve got so much to write about from the last few days. Yesterday, I started my volunteering at a primary school. The school is lovely, the kids are great, but I’m not sure about some of the staff. They seem to do their job well, but I am not sure about how they treat their colleagues, or should I say their volunteers, who are there for free, just to see if they like it, and just to offer a helping hand. They (I say they, I actually mean me, because as far as I know, I’m the only volunteer there.) are not getting paid, they are still not CRB checked yet, but still expected on their first day there to know exactly what to do (how to do the school prayer in sign language?), and still expected to help tiny little tots get changed for PE. All well and good, but if it was my children, and there was a stranger in the class helping, I’d quite like to know who the stranger was. I would also expect that the teacher would introduce this stranger to the children; a) to avoid them being distracted in the wondering of who I was, and b) to make them feel comfortable about my presence in the classroom. NONE OF THIS HAPPENED!
Instead, I was left sitting there, unintroduced, un-spoken-a-word-to by the teachers and some of the classroom assistants, (although one of them was nice and down to earth), and unhappy! I just can’t understand why, when I’ve given up the only free day I have in the week, without the kids and without work to go to (but I still have to go to work on the evening), that they seemed so ungrateful and so mean. One of the classroom assistants was just horrible to the children, and I just feel glad that my children will not be going to that school. Well, maybe not horrible, maybe I just haven’t hardened to naughty, cheeky little 5 and 6 year olds yet. Maybe she’s an excellent classroom assistant and very good at her job, but I just caught her on a bad day. Anyway, it made me decide that I don’t want to be a classroom or teaching assistant. I want to be the actual teacher. So, because of this, I went online and registered with the Open University to do English Language and Literature in September. God knows how I’m going to afford to pay for it, I may have to defer until the February when I’ll be back into the swing of full-time work by then, but at least it’s a step in the right direction, and it’s something I have wanted to do for such a long time, and also something I know I will enjoy despite the self-discipline and hard work.

Talking of work, my own work is driving me insane. Me and my colleague have both been discussing how draining it is working evenings, and how old we feel. I am always tired, I always want to sleep in (but can’t), and I hate hate hate having to travel home on a night time. I keep telling myself “only 7 more months, then I can go back to working normal hours”, but I’ve only been doing it for 2 months (although I am 100% sure it’s been longer than that, it’s certainly felt longer), and that has dragged, and I’ve hated every minute of it, well, every minute of the travelling, not the actual job which is okay.
I just wonder when money became more important than personal safety, when did I cross that line? We do need the money, 7 months of paying 3 days of nursery fees which was double my wages put us in this mess. If only we’d have thought it through properly and checked out all of the options thoroughly before I committed them to the nursery and committed myself to my previous job. If we’d done all of that, we’d probably be okay now, even without me working – we would’ve been okay. So yes, we do need the money, but at what cost?
Basically, I can’t wait to be working daytimes again.

Oh, wedding dress news! I knew there was something. I AM SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS! I have found a website in the US, called Dolly Couture – and I am sOOOOO happy! They are just like Candy Anthony dresses at like a 10th of the price, although I would still need to sort out shipping and customs taxes etc. to the UK, but check out this dress.

This is what I want, but with the black underskirts and the black sash a la Candy style! And a mere snip at just $299 ready to wear (so around about £160 ish). It means I may still need some kind of seamstress to sort out fitting it etc. but WOW-WEEEEEEE!

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Windy Words

Posted by shinymac on January 21, 2008

Today has been an unusually windy day. I got the kids all ready for our nightly trip to The Trafford Centre, where they get picked up by Alex on his way home from work, and I toddle off to work. They had their hats on, their big warm coats and their little handbags with a couple of sweets in to try and keep them awake. Parenting has a lot to do with bribery. Stickers don’t cut it on a bus like they do at the dinner table.

So, we got to Stretford and stood waiting for our bus to come along, when suddenly the wind picked up and almost blew us all away, well, I say “us”, I think I meant “them”, because there is no way the wind could blow me anywhere – the New Year diet is…. erm…. well let’s just say it’s not going so well.

Evie whimpered a little and said she wanted to be at home, and Marley was silent, which I thought was unusual, but when asked if she was okay, she nodded and seemed content, despite the gusts.

We played our usual game of eye spy on the bus, and then off I went to work once they were safely bundled into Alex’s car.

I got home tonight and told Alex how I felt bad that I had to drag them out in the wind, but we don’t really have a choice at the moment. He chuckled a little bit and said that Marley told him the following:

“I tried to talk to Mummy, but the wind blew my words away”. I cried!

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