Out Sick

OutSick

This past week has been a rough one. I caught the cold and it knocked me around a bit. I’m happy to report that I finally feel better I guess there’s nothing a bottle of Mucinex and a box of tissues can’t fix!

Here is an update of my weekend:

Volunteer Event

Woo hoo! I finally began volunteering again! I found this really cool organization called Bakersfield Pet Food Pantry, which serves people in Bakersfield who need emergency pet food assistance. Basically, if a Bakersfield resident is having a tough month, they can fill out an application to receive some free pet food.

During this event, I was stationed at the dog treat booth. I opened new bags of dog treats and split their contents into two Ziploc bags so that we could give to more families. I would then take those treat baggies to the front desk to be distributed to the people and pets in need. Once I finished that task, I was sent to the cat food station, where I prepared bags of dry cat food and wet cat food for distribution.

I really liked volunteering with the Bakersfield Pet Food Pantry. They are a group of people who really care and put judgement aside to serve their cause. I hope to volunteer with them again in the future.

Puppy Problems

Bakersfield has been pretty warm these past few weeks and along with warm weather comes litters of unwanted puppies and kittens. That’s exactly what I saw this weekend. My mom and I were out for a stroll and came upon a neighbor who had a litter of puppies. With a bit of hard work and determination, we were able to find one of the puppies a good home. We called her Zinc and she is now living with a dispatcher in a really good side of town with a big backyard and a happy little girl to grow up with.

Baby Shower

I went to a baby shower this weekend and it was adorable! It was a baseball themed shower, including a baseball themed cake! I didn’t win any of the games, but I tried my best. I also went with a few of my coworkers and got to know them a little better outside of work.

Charlie’s Hair Clippers

I got Charlie a new set of hair clippers from PetsMart. My last pair died after a few years of use, so I needed another pretty badly. Charlie’s hair is getting  a little crazy and overgrown. I’ll be posting some before and after pictures of Charlie’s new hair cut shortly.

Well, I hope everyone’s week goes well!

Talk to ya later!

 

-Paige

 

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Paige’s Confessions: My Bad Habits

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I have a few bad habits that I would like to point out in the hopes that by identifying these habits, I will be able to stop them.

  1. Nervous Tics-I have never been good at hiding my emotions, especially when I’m nervous. Over the years I have developed many nervous ticks, such as excessively opening and closing my hands, biting my nails, pacing, and scratching my head (I mean, like literally raking my fingers through my hair until little bits of my skin come off-yuck I know, but it’s true). I have slowly been able to wean myself off of some of these habits, but I usually just end up developing a new tic. One day I’ll be normal haha.
  2. Eating Fast Food/Over-eating-Some of my family members work at a local fast-food restaurant and they frequently bring home fast food. I don’t know how many burgers and french fries I’ve eaten in the past month, but it’s way too many to count. I definitely need to cut back on the fast food and overeating in general.
  3. Procrastinating-I have a bad habit of making to-do lists and not checking every single task off. Some tasks that I often procrastinate on include: washing dishes, folding my laundry and putting it away, cooking (the microwave is just sooo much easier!), waking up, going to sleep…
  4. Avoidance-when things get tough, many times I find myself avoiding the person or situation that brought about the negative emotion I experience. In order to better myself, I must learn to face the music and deal with whatever problem I am facing once and for all. This is the only way I will be able to move forward confidently.Curse
  5. Cursing-I mean sometimes a four-letter word is just perfect for the situation. It could also be offensive to others. Sometimes I get so used to cursing that I curse during inappropriate situations or around people who may not know that I curse or are not used to hearing me curse. I’m working on this, mainly by replacing curse words with weird phrases. For example, instead of saying “Holy s**t!” I say “Holy french fry!” Surprisingly, it works.
  6. Being a Worry Wart-I have always worried excessively. It’s actually this worrying and anxiety that has brought about the nervous ticks and avoidance. I feel that I’ve become less of a worry-wart, but every now and then I’ll have  a panic attack where I’ll feel like the world is caving in on me, that I’ll never pay off my student loans or save for my own place. I just have to keep reminding myself to breathe and that change comes slowly.
  7. Being a Chatter Box-I’m a very shy person…until I start talking and talking and talking. My own family have learned to ignore me while I ramble. I’m not really sure of how to stop talking excessively, but I’ll look into it.
  8. Talking to myself-(mainly because I run out of other people to talk to).doctor
  9. Skipping Doctor Visits-This is a big deal. I mean, we only get one body, and I’m doing a pretty terrible job of maintaining the health of mine! I overeat, don’t really exercise, and, to top it all off, I rarely go to the doctor. I have recently applied for medical insurance, so maybe I’ll go for a visit sometime.
  10. Staying Out of Touch with People-this may be a part of the avoidance behavior I exhibit, but I feel it is slightly different. There are a lot of people who have helped me over the years that I no longer talk to anymore. It’s not that I don’t want to, it’s that I just haven’t put any effort into reconnecting with anyone. I definitely need to start messaging people more often and going on outings with friends again.

What are you bad habits and how are you working on overcoming them? Feel free to post in the comments section below!

 

Ta Ta For Now!

-Paige

Thumbtacks at a Dog Park?!

TacksDogs

According to ABC News, some crazy person (and obvious dog hater) has been planting thumbtacks at a dog park in Hercules, California. Who the hell does this sort of thing?!

Holy moly, am I angry! How could someone do such a thing to such harmless creatures? Not to mention the risk it brings to children in the area!

I realize that some people do not like animals for some reason or another, but that does not justify a person intentionally harming those animals. Especially in such a way that could be harmful to both humans and animals.

For what it’s worth, I hope the cops find this person and put them away for a VERY long time.

What do you think of this kind of behavior?

Source:

http://abcnews.go.com/US/hundreds-thumbtacks-found-california-dog-park/story?id=36907445

-Paige

My Student Tab

StudentTab.jpg

Oops.. I did it again…it’s been a month since my last post. I swear I have a good reason! Well, it’s no secret that I graduated college last year. Throughout my education I had to pull out three student loans (nicknamed: My Student Tab) to pay for rent, food, and school supplies. In fact, by the end of my two years at UC Davis, my student tab was at $11,000. Gasp! That’s a lot of dinero!

But today, I am glad to announce that I paid off one of my loans! Yipee! I’m so happy! I’ve been working my butt off the last month to be frugal in all aspects of my life and to focus on working and making money for these student loan payments.

All the hard work paid off and resulted in me paying off a $800 loan. Now I can focus my efforts on the two loans I have left.

One down, two to go!

Talk to ya later,

Paige

 

No more CAHSEE?

I graduated in 2010, so it’s been about 5 years since I’ve been in high school, but I saw something in the news that reminded me of those distant days.

Apparently, the high school exit exam is being suspended in California! Crazy, how things change. I mean, I never worried about passing the CAHSEE because the high school curriculum came fairly easily to me. I knew of plenty of students who didn’t pass it though.

Do you think suspending the CAHSEE is a good thing? I guess it cuts down on the number of tests that teens have to worry about. I don’t know. More to come. Plus, the teens that graduated in 2003-2004 who didn’t pass the exit exam, but met all the other criteria for graduation, will now receive their high school diplomas. I wonder how this will impact those students’ lives?

I wonder why Governor Brown decided to pass this law. I can’t say that I support or denounce it. I guess I just don’t have much of an opinion on it, but I’m still curious. After all, who came up with the idea of school and testing in the first place? Hmmm…I literally don’t know. I think I just found out what I’m going to spend my free time looking into!

 

-Paige

Sonora’s Story

You may have noticed a new addition to my ever-growing family. Yes, she is soooo adorable and chunky! Introducing the one, the only, Sonora Furiosa!

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Look at that smile!

Sonora’s story is an interesting one and I’m glad to share it with anyone who will listen.

When my family moved near the downtown area of Bakersfield, I caught a glimpse of a panda! “Whoa!” you may say, “Holy French Fry!” you may think, but yes, it is true, I saw a panda. At least that’s what I called the neighbor’s dog. You see, he had eye patches that made him look like a big, fat, panda. Once I saw him I was in love, I mean look at him! Just look at him!

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He’s so adorable and fat!

Panda is Sonora’s dad.

Sonora’s mom, from what I gather, is a chocolate lab mix. She’s very protective of her yard and I try to stay away from her whenever possible. Her owners let her roam the streets though, so sometimes it’s more difficult to steer clear of her.

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Here is a picture of Panda and Sonora’s mom and their puppies. The puppies are  laying in the street between Panda and the red truck.

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Can you see the pile of sleeping puppies?

Here is another picture I was able to take of Sonora’s parents.

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Mama & Papa

Sorry about the picture quality-Sonora’s mom was barking at me for hovering around trying to take pictures. (Now I must say, I do not agree with the way these dogs’  owners kept their dogs and the puppies. These neighbors are known for having unwanted puppies roaming the streets until the pound drives by and picks them up. I must also say, that I am forever grateful of the owner giving me one of the puppies (Sonora). She will forever be in my heart and in my pack of fur babies.)

One day, my mom and I were passing by and decided to take a risk and ask the neighbor if we could get a puppy. Problem: We had never spoken to these neighbors, nor seen them (At this point, I kinda regarded them as ghosts that only came out at night). After a few minutes of yelling at the house, we were about to give up when the front door opened and a man came out. He didn’t speak English & we didn’t speak Spanish, but he got the hint and said that we could take the puppy. He handed the puppy over the fence before the mama dog had a chance to come after us.

I walked home proudly and put Sonora in the bathroom.

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My lil munchkin had fleas galore!
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I fell in love with her the moment I laid eyes on her

Sonora was really dirty and full of fleas and ticks. Do you see that dark patch on her head between her eyes? That’s a patch of fleas. She had the worst case of fleas I’ve ever seen in a puppy (and keep in mind I’ve worked and volunteered at tons of vet clinics).  Needless to say, she got a bath and flea treatment right away.

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This is Sonora’s bath time a few weeks after I got her

When I first introduced Sonora to the rest of the family, she was shy. After a few days, though, Sonora felt right at home with us. Now, she’s part of the gang!

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Sonora’s favorite place is under my bed. Do you see the patches of bare skin on Sonora’s ear? That’s where the fleas were clustered. So sad.

Here is Sonora lounging:

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At this point, we had taken control of the fleas and Sonora was feeling much better!
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So adorable!

I got Sonora a bed and a bunch of toys and she fell in love with them!

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I’ve been working with Sonora to train her and teach her good manners. Sonora and I are definitely a work in progress, but we’re getting there! Meanwhile Sonora keeps getting bigger and bigger (and I love it-I hope she stays chunky forever!).

Ta Ta For Now!

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-Paige

Human Waste

A few weeks ago I was taking Charlie and Sonora out for a walk and noticed that the city had drained the Millcreek canal. I couldn’t believe all the trash I saw piled up in the canal! How terrible that people would throw trash in there, especially when there are so many trash cans around nowadays. What a shame.

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See the crane down there?
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Trash! Trash! Trash!

It’s kinda crazy though, because a few days after I visited the canal, I went back with the pups and there were a bunch of cops EVERYWHERE! It was pretty crazy! Turns out there were human remains found in the canal. Eww!

Human Remains Found

The past few weeks have been weird at best. The Bakersfield Police Department found human remains in the Mill Creek Canal. This canal happens to be the one that I walk my dogs to just about every week. Crazy how this stuff happens. I mean, Bakersfield just seems to be getting worse and worse as the years go by.

I did a quick google search of “Bakersfield, CA crime rate” and got a bunch of hits. I clicked on a few links and got some depressing news.

According to usa.com, which provides information about cities and neighborhoods in the U.S.,  Bakersfield has higher crime rates than the average crime rate of California and the United States. I have attached the image below for those of you who are visual learners:

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Please note that this image is from http://www.usa.com

I also visited cityrating.com, which reflected similar findings:

 

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This image is from http://www.cityrating.com

I don’t know what to say other than to express hope that one day Bakersfield will be a better place to live. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels this way. I’m sure there are groups out there who are looking for ways to make Bakersfield a proud city again. Maybe I’ll look into it further and join the effort.

Talk to ya later!

 

-Paige

A Bully Story

AbullyStory

Bullying has impacted my life and the lives of my family members and so I am very intolerant of it. As I was going through some writing prompts, I saw one that asked writers to write about an experience with bullying. So here goes:

When I was in high school, I saw students showing livestock at the fair and knew I wanted to be a part of that. So first chance I got, I enrolled in the Agriculture program at my school and was soon a member of the Future Farmers of America (FFA). I raised a lamb and two pigs at the Kern County Fair and was involved in some contests.

The bullying incident occurred while I was on the Cotton Judging team. I had befriended a girl, we’ll call her Lilly. She was a freshman and was new to the FFA, but she was a godsend to our cotton judging team. Our agriculture teacher saw potential in her. She did really well during practices, made stellar reasons for her arguments, and was a joy to hang out with. I remember she always wore her long, dirty blonde hair styled in an edgy, rocker do. Her thick eyeliner and low socioeconomic status made her an easy target for the rich preppy girls on our team.

I was also from a low-income family and found it easy to relate to her. Most of our team was composed of rich girls who had nice houses and less than a care in the world. So I guess there was bound to be some bullying taking place.

One morning we were all crowded in our agriculture classroom getting ready to head out to another city for a contest later that day. FFA members have a certain uniform that they wear. For girls it was a black skirt, pantyhose, a white collared shirt, an FFA tie thing, and an FFA jacket. There might have been other parts of the uniform, but I can’t remember right now. What I do remember is that on this particular day, Lilly had forgotten her tie. She hadn’t realized she had forgotten it until we were already at the site of the competition.

She was understandably nervous about informing our Ag teacher, because he had specifically asked if everyone had their uniform ready before we left the school grounds. We had all replied in the affirmative. Lilly didn’t want to disappoint him. She came to me with tears in her eyes and explained the situation.

I had a lot of faith in the resourcefulness and kindness of our Ag teacher, and so I told him. He shocked me, by replying with very stern remarks and an angry, red-faced expression. I don’t know if he was stressed that day or what, but Lilly did not take it well.

Keep in mind that the entire morning, the preppy girls on our team had been poking fun at Lilly, and so Lilly was not in the best state for dealing with an angry teacher. I told Lilly it would be ok and that we could share ties if at all possible.

Now anyone who has ever participated in FFA contests knows that before the contest begins, the girl’s bathroom is always full of teen girls checking themselves in the mirror, ensuring that every part of their outfit and hairstyle is in its proper place. This day was no different. As my friend, Ivy, and I ventured into the bathroom, we saw a very upsetting sight.

The preppy girls were bunched in front of a bathroom stall. I could hear their words spilling out like venom and knew immediately who was hiding in the stall. Poor Lilly was upset and crying over her tie and our teammates’ harsh words. Ivy and I immediately set to action and got those little brats away from the stall. It took a while to reassure Lilly that those girls didn’t matter and to get her focus back on the contest.

Karma got them though. If I remember correctly (and I do), Lilly walked away with an award that day, while those rich girls just watched.

The thing is that the bullying didn’t stop there. A few weeks later we had another contest to attend. This time, one of the rich girl’s parents was going to be driving our van to the contest. You can imagine how that went.

It was early in the morning and we were all supposed to meet in the school parking lot. My friend Ivy & I were running late. Our teacher always said that if we were ever late, that the driver was to leave anyways, even if some of the team members were left behind. So that’s what I expected to happen. Instead, Rich Mama waited for us. As soon as Ivy and I got to the school van we were greeted by a very unhappy Rich Mama and her daughter.

Rich Mama scolded Ivy and I for being late while her daughter was in the van making fun of Lilly. This was way too much for my teenage mind to handle. I told Rich mama that she could have left like the teacher had told her to, and it was her decision to wait for us and make the rest of the team late. I also told her that it wasn’t like her daughter was winning any prizes anyways and that Ivy and I had been winning prizes (This was true as Ivy and I had been winning ribbons at other contests prior to this encounter). Rich mama looked upset, but we all loaded up into the van and set out for the contest.

Of course, I was scolded the next day at school by my Ag teacher. He said that I was lacking humility by talking to Rich Mama like that. I told him my side of the story, but it didn’t matter.

Sometimes it never does I guess. After all, Rich mama was part of the Alumni Association for our school’s FFA chapter and she contributed money to the chapter. Why tell her anything and risk losing sponsorship? I guess money clouds many people’s minds, no matter how well-intentioned.

I walked away that day angry for what was happening to Lilly and why the adults wouldn’t do anything to stop it. I was also angry at how Rich Mama felt she could treat my friends and I. Why does money separate people? Who made a rule that people from different socioeconomic classes couldn’t get along?

By the time I graduated high school, Lilly was doing much better. Of course she didn’t hang out with those preppy girls, but she had found her own niche and was prospering there. I don’t know what happened to her after high school. Maybe I’ll try and get in touch. Food for thought.

Til next time,

Paige