Surviving Thanksgiving

Surviving Thanksgiving

I hate Thanksgiving.

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Whenever you feel down on Thanksgiving, just remember that Jake Peralta feels the same way.

Instead of dwelling, as I am wont to do, I am going to break the holiday down into a series of problems and solutions in an effort to think POSITIVELY about the most annoying of all the holidays.

Problem: No one loves you

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Solution: Check your email. Chances are, your dentist and your mobile parking app love you:


Problem
: Mashed potatoes are delicious but making them involves many different tools and efforts

Solution:

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Just like grandma used to microwave

Problem: Parkmobile didn’t email you, even though you have the app

Solution: Fuck parkmobile. Download Parking Panda.

Problem: Your wine doesn’t understand your complex emotions about the holidays

Solution: Get a nice pinot that also laughs and cries at the same time

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Apparently this was only $7.99 at Whole Foods! It’s a Thanksgiving Miracle!!!!

Problem: Feeling bad about how fucked up the history of this holiday is

Solution: There is no solution to this, thanksgiving is fucked up. Most (all) American holidays are fucked up. However, doing something feels better than just feeling shitty so here’s some stuff:

– Donate to Standing Rock’s medical fund: https://www.holisticlivingschool.org/standing-rock-medic-healer-council/

– Donate an item off of Standing Rock’s amazon wishlist

-More info here: http://sacredstonecamp.org

Again, donating doesn’t make it go away, but showing your support against the dakota access pipeline is important!

Problem: now that you mention it, everything sucks

Solution: it does. If you can donate to some pro-women, pro-immigrant, pro-queer and anti-nazi organizations through this link https://www.jezebel.com/a-list-of-pro-women-pro-immigrant-pro-earth-anti-big-1788752078/amp

Problem: your father is in town

Solution: spend as much of the day drinking with your friend AS POSSIBLE

“She’s ALL ALONE on thanksgiving, dad!”

Problem: god has forsaken you, probably because you’re avoiding your deadbeat dad

Solution: worship Ke$ha as your Lord and Savior


Problem: thanksgiving isn’t gay enough

Solution: Stick It


Problem: your family voted for Trump

Solution: Keep calm and think about Captain America


Alright well hopefully that covers everything. Happy Holidays my friends! Stay strong! Stay queer!

TEACHER TALK

TEACHER TALK
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Except, you know, not evil

This post brought to you by Teacher Supreme, another co-worker of mine who has a real teaching blog  where she talks about teaching and not whatever harebrained thing crosses her mind (nice burn on myself, myself!). She tagged me to answer these questions, and I know this is supposed to be a blog about my budget but maybe I’m on a budget because I’m a teacher hmm and also THIS IS MY BLOG AND I DO WHAT I WANT:

 

 

1) What has been your one biggest struggle this year?

Several things come to mind but, as I’ll mention in question #4, I don’t know that “struggle” is the word I would use because after years and years of really crazy, awful jobs I wake up every morning feeling like 50% “ugh, waking up” and 50% “oh my god, I have a real career I like and it hasn’t proven to be a dream for yet another day wow”.

So anyway, ummm, my struggles include, loosing my full-size classroom that I was already sharing and getting a non-classroom room with no windows (this implies that my old classroom had windows, that isn’t true though) that used to be a break room and I now share with another self-contained teacher instead of a resource teacher. There is LITERALLY just enough room for our two desks and enough chairs table/desk space for our biggest class. It’s nuts. BUT ACTUALLY: even this struggle is okay because the self-contained teacher I share with is one of my best friends (so is Teacher 3, the resource teacher I used to share with! Sharing a classroom with me = INSTANT BESTFRIENDSHIP) AND it has a sink in it, which was my greatest wish.

2) Share two accomplishments that you are proud of this school year.

  1. Getting a sink. I’m proud of this because I asked for a sink and even though I got stuffed into a break room that is so small that I literally can’t get to my desk when students are sitting in their chairs I still GOT what I asked for. Proving that I’m, at the very least, sometimes listened to. Do you know how much easier it is to care for my classroom turtle with a sink? When I do water changes I can just siphon the old water straight into the drain IT’S INCREDIBLE.
  2. Becoming the Science Department Lead Teacher. This is less impressive when you realize I wasn’t voted in or anything, I saw there was an opening and I wanted to do it and administration said yes, that’s literally the story. But I’m still proud of it because I got snacks to be an institution at the science department meetings. EVIDENCE: When I had another teacher lead the meeting because I had another meeting he brought snacks and later he told me that it was because he thought the teachers would be expecting it. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

3) What are three things you want to accomplish this year?

  1. Helping form the Gay-Straight Alliance. This is already in the works thanks to a better organized teacher than me who had a meeting after school today to plan that was already rescheduled once because of me and then I up and got sick and missed this one, ugh. I’m the worst co-worker, sorry all the people I work with ;_;
  2. Increase the pass rate for the 8th grade Science SOL for our gap groups. Ugh, I actually really want this. But before you’re like, wow, leadership has CHANGED you man, I want this for the kids because I have a group that I taught science to last year and they’ve passed a handful of SOLs among them and I KNOW THEY CAN DO IT, HO YEAH.
  3. More projects that my students are actually excited to do. Class is more fun when students aren’t constantly whining “ARGH, WHY DO WE HAVE TO DO THE SCIENCE FAIR” and are instead like “OH MY GOD, CAN I USE THESE PIPE CLEANERS FOR THE ENDOPLASMIC RETICULUM??” which really happened once!!!!!

4) Give four reasons why you remain in education despite today’s rough culture.

  1. Because I spent so many years in retail. And I know that other jobs are shit. Teaching may be stressful, but it is not even a little bit as shitty as the various jobs I have had. (This includes the literally shitty jobs, like working at a Doggie Day Care)
  2. The looks on my students’ faces when they accomplish something after working hard. You know what was the most amazing this year? When we had to have a mini science fair because of Snowzilla, when I told my four top students that they were invited to participate in the fair their faces just LIT UP they were so proud.
  3. I LOVE the people I work with. I mean, like, love. I work with amazing people at an amazing school.
  4. Sharing awesome knowledge with students. I love teaching science! I’m like, did you guys know that you started as one cell? You were first a zygote and look at you now IT’S AMAZINGGGGGG

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5) Which five people do you hope will  challenge themselves with answering these questions?

Michael, Ginz, Teacher 3, Goddess, and Teacher 2

Only one of these people has a blog BUT THAT’S OKAY

The Check Engine Light Adventure

Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Ask For Help at Advance Auto Parts.

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hello… it’s me…

I love my car. He is a 2005 Honda Accord and his name is Smithers. He has given me years of faithful service however, ever since he turned 10 he has been having many …issues. (Did you know a brake caliper could lock up and destroy every brake pad it touches?! Did you know that brake pads are attached to wheels with calipers???) There are so many belts in my car and they’re ALL cranky. Power steeling fluid? It’s possible for your car to not BE READY for an emissions test. Like, they’re the lead in a play and it’s the last day before your registration expires and Virginia requires emissions tests every two years and it’s showtime and your car won’t leave the dressing room. Every time I go to the mechanic it’s something new that can’t possibly be a thing. Every time I think I know how cars work, Smithers makes a horrifying new sound and I learn about a part of my car I didn’t even know existed that costs $900 to fix

Budgeting is hard as it is, but when your car is over 125,000 miles it becomes even harder. I have found only one real tip to saving money when it comes to cars and here it is.

How to Diagnose Your Car’s Malfunction Code (Reason for the Check Engine Light) for Free

Before I get into this I have to mention that my co-worker (codename Goddess) has been telling me how to do this for LITERALLY YEARS and I have been too lazy/stupid/nervous to try it.

Step 1) You notice your check engine light is on.

Step 2) Denial. (There’s nothing wrong with my car! It just passed inspection!)

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Capped by Kamp Krusty. Copyright to Fox Entity Matt Groening, Glory to Fox in the Highest

 

Step 3) Acceptance. (Huh, it’s still on and it’s been weeks, maybe I need to check this out)

Step 4) Go to your nearest Advance Auto Parts (according to the internet other places do this too, but I can’t vouch for that shit)

Step 5) Give yourself a pep talk in the parking lot (You can do this! You know about cars! You’re an independent human being who can take matters into your own hands! I bet after you get the code you can fix the car yourself!!!)

Step 6) Panic when you see the people in the Advance Auto Parts. THEY look like they know about cars. You don’t know about cars, what were you thinking?!

Step 7) Run back to your car

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Good luck finding the manual you horrible slob

Step 8) Find your owner’s manual. The manual is fancy and does not call this problem “Check Engine Light”, it calls it “Malfunction Indicator Lamp”. The manual says if the malfunction indicator lamp is turn on, then you should turn your car off and on again. It really says that!

Step 9) Begin to doubt the authority of your owner’s manual. The manual states that if the malfunction indicator lamp is still on after you turn your car back on you should immediately go to your dealership for service.

Step 10) Throw out your owner’s manual

Step 11) Put your game face on and get back to that Advance Auto Parts!

Step 12) After obsessing over what to call the thingie you need, ask the salesperson for a “code reader” they will know what you mean. If you ask for the “malfunction indicator lamp diagnostic tool” they will NOT (I know this from experience)

Step 13) Get the code reader, feel so jazzed that you weren’t immediately thrown from the store for being a car impostor that you decline help using the reader

Step 14) Realize that you have NO EARTHLY IDEA how to use this box with what looks like a fire wire input cable. Your car doesn’t have a port that looks anything like this?!?

Step 15) Ask the salesperson for help.

Step 16) Apologize to the salesperson for how messy your car is and for the loud ass music that you didn’t think to turn down.

Step 17) Watch CLOSELY as the salesperson plugs the reader in so that maybe, just maybe, you can someday do this on your own

Step 18) Write down every single number/word that the code reader comes up with. Your mechanic will want to know all of it, not just the code

Step 19) Thank the Advance Auto Parts person profusely. They have just saved you like 80 bucks in labor costs

Step 20) Strut into your mechanic’s with the code. “No, I don’t need you to read my code, I have it RIGHT HERE!!!!”

Step 21) Bask in the admiration of everyone in the mechanic’s waiting room, oh did you pay these people to diagnose your problem AND fix the problem? Ho ho ho, you must not be a car expert like I clearly am (this step is a lie)

Now get out there and drive with confidence, you sexy car connoisseur!!

NEXT TIME: How to apply for a line of credit at your mechanic because you’re gonna funking need it

Oatmeal Jars: A Transcript

This post brought to you by the student who keeps forgetting to bring in the ONE material they need to do their science fair experiment.

Me: Okay, I am asking my friend about making oatmeal in jars for breakfast because everyone says its cheap and easy

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From Morgue File’s Scarletina (in case you don’t know what a mason jar looks like)

Teacher 2: Not everybody says that. No I wanted a funny name! Stop it!

Goddess: She’s the Hoe. I’m Goddess. No, I mean DHOH Da Hoh because she’s the Deaf and Hard of Hearing teacher.

Teacher 2: I don’t consent to being Da Hoh. I don’t want to be on your blog anymore, it’s not fun.

Teacher 4: I thought we were gonna hear about oatmeal

Teacher 3 (Oatmeal Expert): So in the morning, I wake up. And I go to the kitchen and boil water. It’s easier if you have an electric kettle.

Me: Sounds fake but okay

Teacher 3: Then I get the mason jars out, I do two, because of Patrick. I put half a cup of “old fashioned oats” in each mason jar

Me: What the hell is old fashioned oats mean

Goddess: Not instant

Teacher 4: I actually knew that

Goddess: I have some that I have, that someone gave me, and I don’t eat oatmeal and you can have it

Me: Why are you in this oatmeal seminar if you don’t like oatmeal, Goddess?

Goddess: *shrugging* I’ve eaten it.

Teacher 4: Kaila, are you gonna have time to eat your lunch today?

Teacher 3: Then I put a cup of the hot water on top of the oats, this is old fashioned, regular oats, not fancy

Teacher 2: She said “quick-cooking” NOT “fancy”

Me: Argh

Teacher 3: Then I put the lid on the jar and then I’m ready for the day. This is at 6:20, I’m doing the oats then. I making my coffee, I’m making lunch. I make more coffee. So at 6:50, it’s been half an hour, I take a banana. Well, I open the jar, I shake in cinnamon, I put in some banana. Okay this is where it gets fancy. (NOTE: She actually said fancy this time), I put the jar on a scale and I add 32 grams of peanut butter AT MOST. Today, it was 12 grams because I ran out.

Teacher 2: Macros

Teacher 5: I want to add something to this

Teacher 3: Now here’s the trick: I close it up, I bring it to work. At work, I take the lid off and I microwave it for one minute.

Me: You can microwave glass? Wait, that was stupid. I just microwaved glass like ten minutes ago.

Teacher 3: That’s where these ~*~**~cloth sandwich bags~*~*~ (NOTE: emphasis added) come in handy. Use a towel, Kaila! I stir it in TA and eat it in TA. BOOM breakfast.

Me: Are you claiming, that this is cheaper than eggo’s?????

Student: (from the doorway) I’m done with my test

Me: ….????

Teacher 3: Yes, it’s definitely cheaper than eggo’s. Think about it, a huge thing of oatmeal costs about $3.00 and it’s 19 servings, so if you’re making it for Michael it’s 19/2. Times 5? You know, math! There are five days in a week. And then bananas, not that expensive! And you’re only using one banana a day if you’re making it for both of you. And then, I don’t know, a big thing of cinnamon! The banana IS the sugar-

Me: Whoaaaa, wait. Okay, um, sure. Let’s say that.

Teacher 3: *whispering* Sometimes I add prunes.

Me: For that fiberrrrr.

Teacher 3: Yeaaaah, keeps you regular!

Me: Okay, now we’re surrounded by students, literally. HI students!

Students: *silent*

Me: I want to say, for the record, that Teacher 3 calls this recipe The Elvis.

THE END

NOTE: I did not have time to eat my lunch.

NEXT TIME: The Check Engine Light Adventure

 

All of the Horrifying Drinks I’ve Been Making While On Budget

This afternoon, I finally spent fun money on grocery store alcohol. You might be impressed, thinking that I’ve been sober for the entirety of this budget-adventure (budventure) so far (11 days). FALSE. I have been drinking in two ways:

  1. At happy hour (where else would my fun money go)
  2. With the alcohol in our apartment liquor cabinet (by which I mean the space on the top of our refrigerator:

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(FUN FACT: That tall “Yo ❤ Panama” shot glass was a gift from a student)

So here it is, the drinks that drove me to spend $18.99 of my fun money on a box of wine:

  1. The Adult Hot Chocolate
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    This one might be misleading, it sounds like a legitimate drink. And it kind of was, tbh. Also because I misspelled cocoa. However, I really think flavored vodka is only good for shooting. Or at least, hot chocolate is not enough to mask the chemically taste really at all and instead of one pretty decent tasting shot you all left to drink many many sips of chemical chocolate.
  2. The Cherry Lemonade
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    Shout out to Ginny, I couldn’t’ve done it without that ice cube tray!!!
  3. The Fruity Toasty
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    At this point, I still had half a lemon so it wasn’t too crazy yet. Also, I made this one when I was already tipsy from happy hour and wanted to keep drinking when I got home. I was really proud of it at the time.
  4. The Blackberry Cherry Berryade
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    Pretty okay!
  5. The Blackberry Cherry Berryade with Clementine
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    At this point, I was a little panicked about being out of lemon. I figured there had to be some citrus in there.
  6. The Blackberry Cherry Berryade with Clementine and Red Food Coloring
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    At this point, I was thinking that #5 didn’t taste right because it wasn’t a good color. I WAS WRONG, IT WAS THE MIXTURE OF CLEMENTINE AND BLACKBERRIES.

At work today, I had to fake some lab results for some very earnest students who completely blotched a batch of conductive clay (they worked so hard and I learned it’s not hard to rig an Ohm meter) and I thought it was Tuesday pretty much all day and I realized that I needed something other than various mushed up things and cherry vodka (WHO LET ME BUY A HANDLE OF CHERRY FLAVORED VODKA) when I got home.

Although, if you’re out of fun money for the week and you’re already kinda maybe drunk I do recommend just smashing the crap out of whatever and calling it muddled.

NEXT TIME: Maybe I’ll talk about Tippy???

Bread Ends

Today, I was tasked with just another one of the endless problems in my life. Namely: do I have to eat the end pieces of this loaf of bread.

I am writing this post in a co-worker’s classroom.

Teacher 1: “It’s called the ‘butt’ of the bread”

Teacher 2: “I don’t like butts”

Anyway. For context: my boyfriend and I are on a budget. He got it from a book and he did all the math that was necessary because he’s amazing. Basically, it posits that 50% of your monthly salary should be spent on essentials (rent, groceries, medications, etc.), 20% should be put into savings, and 30% can be spent on non-essentials (alcohol, eating out/delivery/takeout, clothes, etc. We call this “fun money”). I just want to say that, for the record, it was not my idea to put alcohol in the “non-essentials” category over the “groceries” category.

We are already over our weekly grocery budget for the month AND I REITERATE that this is NOT INCLUDING alcohol. Not to mention, we have both been eating sandwiches for lunch and different formats of pasta at night. And various processed pastries for breakfast. How could be possibly be over our grocery budget? Where can we cut back? I refuse – REFUSE – to prepare breakfast in the morning, and (despite all the time I spend on Pinterest) I am not prepared to put steel cut oats in mason jars. I’m just not on that level.

Teacher 3: “I like big butts and I cannot lie. Hey, put that in your blog post!”

In any case, this isn’t going to be the best “lifestyle” blog. Because I’m only good at giving advice in person, that’s where I’m an EXPERT in bullshitting. Something about typing into this box and rereading it obsessively prevents me from pretending like I’m NOT stress-eating three blueberry Eggo’s every morning. Joke. It’s about four. SO HERE GOES.

Oh also, I made the sandwich with the butt of the bread. It was fine.

NEXT TIME: All the horrifying drinks I’ve been making with the alcohol that’s already in the apartment.