The joys of job interviews, cooking, and keeping busy after college!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Still Alive

I have realized that blogging is much easier when you are not employed full time, or maybe it is just because I am new to this job that I don't have much time, and when I do get home, I am usually so tired that I would rather just hang out with my sister and read other people's blogs. But either way, I do still enjoy blogging myself, so here is my most recent update and cooking/baking adventure.

After week two as a Greater Columbus Convention Center Event Coordinator, I am starting to enjoy it a bit more. I am getting slightly more comfortable and starting to talk with some of my clients for my own events. I am still in training mode, but I am starting to become self sufficient and solve problems and start tasks on my own. Of course I still have a lot of questions, but most people I work with are super helpful and more than happy to answer them, sometimes in wayyy more detail than I ever really wanted, but hey, I will take it.

The next three weeks I work pretty much all nights, sometimes until 12 or 1am. That will definitely be a challenge for me since I am much more of a morning person, but that is how the schedule worked out. Everyone tells me that in the beginning there will be a lot of nights because I do not have many events of my own, so I will mostly be covering other people's. I am still kind of in training, but the person training me those days is apparently not very good and never really does anything, so I guess I will learn quickly on my own. I have always thought it is one of the best ways to learn though, just throw me in and sink or swim.

Last night was really the first night I have been able to go out, so Beth set up a little welcome Katie to Columbus night with some of her friends. We had planned on going to this cute authentic German Haus called Schmidt's Sausage Haus for some real German sausage, it has even been featured on Man vs. Food! Well, they don't take reservations, so we got there around 7:30 and tried to put our name on the list for a party of 8. To my surprise, she told me the wait would be at least 2 hours. There was no way we were waiting that long, so we ended up at a place down the road called the Mowhawk. It was decent, still about a 30 min wait,but someday I will have to make it to that German place. After, we went to an Irish sort of pub with live music. Also, fun, but I was exhausted.

Now, for the latest in the Suty cooking/baking adventures. The other night for dinner, Beth and I made some homemade spaghetti and meatballs (well the meatballs were homemade at least). After dinner we made some yummy oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. It made a ton so I think we will be eating cookies for weeks, but they were good.
I have not had homemade meatballs in sooo long, but these were really flavorful. It made a lot, so we are getting creative on how we use all the leftover meatballs now.



Homemade Garlic and Onion Meatballs
Yields: 20 meatballs

Ingredients:
1 lb Ground Beef
1 c Bread Crumbs
1 tbls Italian Seasoning
1 tbls Italian mix Cheese
1/4 tsp pepper
1 egg
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
2 tbls Diced onion

For the Spaghetti:
1/2 box whole wheat pasta noodles (your choice of shape)
1 jar Prepared pasta sauce



Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2. Mix all the ingredients for the meatballs in a medium bowl until well combined.

3. Roll meat mixture into 1 inch balls, and place in oven safe baking dish.

4. Bake in oven for about 12-15 minutes or until cooked all the way through.
5. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to instructions on box. Drain pasta, add sauce to noodles and mix together.
6. Serve with desired number of meatballs and enjoy!

Pretty simple, but the meatballs really were quite flavorful, and we have loved eating them for leftovers, even just plain right from the fridge!

As for dessert, between dinner, and these delicious cookies, we had a great sister bonding evening. Beth was in the mood for brownies, but I am not a big brownie person, so she found a recipe that was given to her by a girl at work and we thought it would be a nice compromise. The recipe should follow in days to come, but I seem to have misplaced it, so we will see!Here is a picture though, and this is not even including the last batch, i'm telling you, there were a lot, but I guess in this apartment, you can never have too many cookies!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Rocky Start...

Don't fret, the job is going alright, besides being on information overload. I started contacting some of my clients for my events today. There is so much to take in, but I think I will really like it once I get the hang of everything. The people are all super nice and very helpful, but I do look forward to the day when I will be able to do more on my own. This weekend, we have a huge event. The Arnold Sports Show is coming to the Columbus Convention Center, yup that's right, Arnold Schwarzenegger will be hanging out all weekend!

From what I hear, it will be very busy but it is the best place to people watch, and since I absolutely love people watching, I am really looking forward to it. There will be over 100,000 people come through the convention center this weekend to watch sports like gymnastics, strong man competition, boxing, and even events like fencing, table tennis, and jump roping. This will be interesting for sure.

So as for the rocky start, I was driving to work yesterday and the car in front of me stopped very suddenly. I slammed on my breaks, and they locked then released and I kind of skidded to an almost stop as I swerved off to the shoulder. I was able to stop before I hit the cop car on the shoulder that apparently was causing the sudden stops, and I avoided hitting the car in front of me, so thank the Lord for that. Unfortunately, my brakes were just not the same after that. In order to stop I had to press my brakes all the way down to the floor of the car. I was able to find a place to take it, and they informed me that my brake lines were rusted and now leaking all the way from the front to the back. He gave me an estimate that was far more than something like that should cost, but it was unsafe to drive my car since it wasn't holding break fluid, so I had no choice. Great, I have not even gotten a week of earning money, and I am spending probably an entire week's pay (luckily dad said he would help, I love him). Beth had to come pick me up, and I had to drive her car to work today because I couldn't get a hold of my boss. Luck was not on my side yesterday.

On top of that, my throat was starting to hurt yesterday, and today it was even worse. I went to work and tried to suffer through it. My boss eventually sent me home around 3:30 to get some rest. I figured I would go to the store and get some meds then my car should for sure be done, I mean they had it all day and said it would only take a few hours. I called them at Walmart and he told me it would be another hour. I did not end up getting my car back until 6pm, so by the time I made it home, I was not home early at all, and did not get a chance to relax or nap to feel better. Hopefully it will all go away tomorrow because this is a big weekend, and how crappy is it to be sick your first week of your first real job...just my luck. But my family has been so helpful, and I am so grateful for my sister being around and being so helpful. I am definitely learning to look for the positives in situations.

Hopefully things will start looking up, I am pretty excited for the event this weekend, it should be fun! I was planning on making a new type of stuffed chicken for Beth and I to thank her, but we both got home at very different times and both later than usual, and my chicken was not thaw, so look for that coming soon!

Monday, February 28, 2011

First Day!

Today was my official first day of work as an event coordinator at the Greater Columbus Convention Center! There was definitely a lot of information thrown at me, but it was good. This job is really ligit, I got there, and my boss, Amy, showed me to my office. Yes, that's right, I have my own office, with my name and a lock on the door. It's a good size too, and I am allowed to make it my own and decorate and put whatever I want on the walls. They are also going to give me a new cell phone with internet and e-mail...watch out, I am breaking into this decade!

There are some other cool perks too, and the people seem so great. The department eats lunch together everyday and just hangs out. I am so excited to get more comfortable and start to really become a part of the team. Pretty much everyone there is kind of older, like married and many have kids, but the few I have met so far still seem really great.

She has already given me a handful of events that will be mine to coordinate, but she is not throwing me into it. There are many more days of training, starting tomorrow when I will be meeting more people and finishing my tour of the convention center. I'll keep you updated!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Settling in Columbus

I am a big blog follower, and I hate when others go over a week without updating their blogs, so I apologize for not updating mine in so long. It has been a busy week, with my last day of team trivia, making sure to see my friends and spend time with my parents, packing, and, of course, moving.

Well I am officially moved to Columbus. My wonderful sister was even able to clear enough room in her apartment for all the junk I brought and probably didn't need to. I really did try to only bring the essentials, but it is just so hard to do! I am here and settling well though. My boss sent me my schedule, and it doesn't look like there will be as much time for cooking and baking as there was before, but no worries, I will do my best!

Last night, my first night here, Beth and I went out to a restaurant in New Albany called the Rusty Bucket. I had a fabulous veggie burger, perfect blend of beans with an extra little kick! Tonight I made homemade pizza because Beth hasn't been feeling well, so I wanted to make her a nice simple but delicious dinner that we could each make with our own chosen toppings.

So tomorrow if my first day and I will be working 7 days in a row, talk about breaking me in! Fortunately, they are all day shifts. I am nervous, but very excited so I will keep you updated!

While unpacking I have realized with all the stuff that I brought, I still managed to forget some of the most important things. You know like my dressy winter coat that I will need to wear to work everyday and my social security card that is necessary to start orientation, but hey, nothing too important.

p.s. It was 55 degrees here today and sunny with a slight wind, I was so excited that I took the outer lining off my winter jacket and walked to the store! Beautiful! Maybe I won't need that winter coat after all...no worries, I won't get my hopes up for that.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Feeling a Little Crafty

In about a week and a half, I will not have nearly as much time on my hands as I do now, since I will finally be starting my first real-world job! So when I stumbled upon this idea on "She's Become Doughmestic" I thought I should give it a try now, while I have the time. It's a scarf made out of old T-Shirts. I am all about cheap, simple, and cute, and I have a very hard time throwing anything away, so this was perfect.

First you need to choose three old T-Shirts. They have to be regular old T's, no girly stretch ones, they don't work as well. If they have writing on them just turn them inside out, no one will ever know. I chose all different colors, and the ones I cared the least about just happened to be red, white, and blue, so call me patriotic! They don't have to be all different colors if you don't want though.

1.Start by cutting the hem off the T-shirts, set them aside, but do not throw them away, you will need them.
2. Lay the T-Shirt flat, do not cut up the seams, cut across the T-shirt to create 1-inch strips. (should make about 11 per T-Shirt)
3. Repeat with other two shirts, until you have a total of about 33 1-inch strips.
4. Take each strip and stretch. Then wrap it around the thick part of your hand to make loops like this.

5. Then gather those hems that you tossed aside and cut them into strips about 4 inches long. Use the strips to ties the loops together. Make it as long as you want, then wear it and enjoy!

Super easy and adds a little something extra to your wardrobe :)

Honey Chai Bread

Since I have been home, I have learned that my dad likes to take his breakfast on the go for work every morning. We would go grocery shopping and he would stock up on those mini donuts or over priced coffee cakes that don't even look that appetizing, so I decided to start baking him things to take to work...mainly quick breads (banana is his fav), but I like to add variety. My mom and I made this bread yesterday, it was very different than any other bread I have made. We used a smaller pan than usual, so we made it into a few muffins too. I thought the bread was very good. It had a very different flavor, I think when I make it next time though, I will be sure to let the tea seep longer so it has a stronger taste.

It's pretty simple to make, and the best part is it uses whole wheat flour, no butter, and no sugar besides a little honey, so it's pretty healthy too! I found it on Baking Bites, one of the blogs I follow on Google Reader. As usual, I made some substitutions so I could use what I already had at home, but it still turned out well, so without further ado, here is the recipe.

Honey Tea Bread
Adapted from Baking Bites

3/4 c Dried Cranberries
3/4 c Raisins (you can use all raisins, cranberries, or even dried cherries)
1 1/4 c Strong Hot Tea (I used Caramel Chocolate Chai)
1/4 c Honey
2 Eggs
2 1/4 c Whole Wheat Flour
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/8 tsp Allspice (she used 1/8 tsp Cardamom too if you have some on hand)
1 tbls Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt

Instructions:
1. Pour raisins and cranberries into a large bowl. Pour STRONG warm tea over the mixture and stir in the honey. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 1/2-2 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease 9 x 5 inch loaf pan.
3. After mixture has sat, stir in two eggs.
4. In a small bowl, mix flour, cinnamon, all spice, baking powder, and salt. Add to raisin/tea mixture and stir to incorporate.
5. Pour into lightly greased loaf pan. Bake about 40-45 minutes.
6. Cool bread in pan about 15 minutes, then turn out of pan and cool on wire rack until completely cool.
7. Slice and serve!

Note: If you want to make these into muffins, they still taste great, I actually may have liked the muffins more, line muffin tin with paper liners, fill about 3/4 full and bake about 20 minutes. Cool on wire rack.
This is what they look like before you bake them

And here they are after, ready to enjoy!


Today was an unusually warm day for February in Michigan, So i decided to take the dogs for a walk. I was going to return my book to the library...bad idea. Two strong dogs on leashes and a book under my arm did not work well, especially when Chance wouldn't listen and kept running into the street, so I took him home, put him in the yard and just took Wedge with me. I guess it was a reward for being a (somewhat) obedient dog :) Here he is afterward, I must have tired him out!

Look at how cute he is with his little friends, I swear I did not place them there on purpose!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Shopping!

Today was the fun part of getting my first big girl job...shopping! My professional wardrobe is somewhat limited since I have never really needed more than a couple pairs of pants and a skirt, but now I will need some more business clothing, so we went on a little shopping spree. Of course my mom and I hardly ever buy anything that is not on sale, so we searched the mall for the best deals and actually got a lot of new stuff for less than $100. It's hard to find clothes to fit right now, so there was some frustration, but for the most part, it was enjoyable and successful.

When we got home after a few hours of shopping, we were pretty hungry, so where did we turn but to my favorite cookbook, Cook This, Not That. We had some black beans leftover from those black bean burgers, so the Margarita Chicken was perfect. I wanted to use ingredients we already had in the house, so I made a couple small substitutions, but followed the recipe cook times pretty closely. Somehow, the beans ended up drying out a bit, and our chicken was kind of thick too, so it ended up being tough When all the elements were mixed and eaten together, the flavor was still good though. There are a few changes I will make for next time, such as waiting to heat the beans and spices, and thinning the chicken either by cutting it or pounding it before cooking it. I would also add some other spices other than cumin; something to give it a little extra kick.

(Sorry the lighting was kind of bad in the kitchen for this picture)
After dinner, we watched a fabulous episode of Glee. I have never been a Justin Bieber fan until recently. He really has worked hard to get to where he is, and although I am not full of Bieber Fever yet, I really am softening up to him. The Glee episode not only featured the boys performing multiple Bieber songs, but my favorite song from the Musical, Rent too! Great end to an enjoyable day!