Monday, October 27, 2008


Homecoming at Purdue was a blast. I got to see all my favorite people. I drank Corona with my parents at my favorite bar, only to return a few hours later with my friends. I visited my college job where I recognized about 4 people. I ate, I drank, I was merry.

One of my favorite traditions last year was Breakfast Club. Anyone unfamiliar with Purdue who reads this (which I would imagine is not many): Breakfast Club means the students and sometimes alumni dress up in a costume and line up at 6am waiting for the bars to open at 7am on all home-game-Saturdays. Cheap screwdrivers are the way to drink and it's always super busy. My friends and I were dedicated Breakfast Club members last year and thought we could pull it off this year. After many a round bought and drank the night before though, 6am came too soon. I'm pretty sure we were still feeling some spirited beverages when I was awakened by a phone call asking where we were. I went around the house I was staying at, asking who wanted to get up and go. It turned out we all thought someone else had set an alarm, so we all figured someone would wake us up. Once this was realized, I said, ok, back to bed it is! I woke up again around 10:30, just in time to not feel sick for sitting through the game with my parents.

As far as the game goes: I froze in the stands to watch Purdue basically do nothing the whole time. It was a little depressing, but the marching band is always fun. I know, it sounds lame, but seriously. Sometimes between the band and watching Purdue Pete, they are more entertaining than the actual game.

After going out Friday night and Saturday night, I'm proud to say I didn't feel any consequences from beer. I think it's safe to say I've learned a thing or two since college. :)

It was wonderful seeing the loves of my life, including both family and friends. My sister and I got to spend some quality couch-time, which we loved to do in our old apartment. The only good-weather day was Sunday, and it was the most perfect fall day. Sweatshirt needed, but plenty of warm sunshine. However, I was happy to be able to return to my now-real-life to get cracking at work in the Sunshine State where it was 80-degrees when I got off the plane.

Well, I was happy for about 5 minutes until I found out I absolutely have to get my Florida driver's license first thing tomorrow and I won't be getting paid until mid-November. Then I got home to find my first Sprint bill (of course, due before I actually get paid). I guess real life doesn't take a break when you do, huh?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Mommy, wow! I'm a big kid now...

I did it.

I got up this morning, got ready, made my lunch, ate breakfast, and went to work. I felt like a grown-up the whole time.

JA (Junior Achievement) is great. The people at the Orlando office were wonderful and I hope they are patient with me as I learn the whole JA system. My boss is awesome. She has a spark and energy that keeps everyone going. She and I get along very well and appreciate sassyness from time to time.

Today was mostly a paperwork day. Benefits, taxes, boring adult stuff that's actually really important. I have my 30-day goals: meet people, recruit people, organize an office, things like that. I'll be going with my boss a few times to meet people in the schools. I also tried preparing for the board meeting tomorrow morning. My first official board meeting as an employee, not an intern. I'm a little nervous, but am excited to meet people who are also excited about JA.

This past weekend was just what I needed. My Tampa friend and I hung out on the beach all day on Saturday. The weather was perfect: the sun was warm, the breeze was cool, the water was comfortable. We ate, we sun-bathed, we watched Knocked Up (which just gets funnier every time I watch it). The weekend was rejuvenating, just in time for me to put on my big-girl pants and go to work today.

I have much to do this week to get things organized at my office. I have a couple of yoga classes to attend, which are my new favorite thing. I'll be trying to prepare for my trip home on Friday! I can hardly wait to see my sister, my mom, and go to Harry's for a Corona with Dad. If I can find/purchase a new camera cord, I'll post non-incriminating pictures when I get back. :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A case of the Mondays.

It's official! Monday is my start date at Junior Achievement and I. Can't. Wait.

I'm so excited to meet everyone and learn all I need to learn to do my job. I'm also looking forward to wearing my business attire again. This girl gets excited about a wardrobe change. :)

This weekend was good. One of my favorite Chicagoans was here. We went to Lake Ridge Winery on Saturday. The tour and tasting are complimentary, so we took full advantage. They have a lot of sweeter wines, which I tend to shy away from. They had a nice Cuvee Noir, a dryer red, which I purchased. Their wine is fairly inexpensive, so it was worth it for us to walk out of there with 5 bottles. No worries, we did not drink them all this weekend. We also went to the pumpkin patch set up in Celebration. It was a cute set up. I learned that pumpkin carving in Florida is a little different from pumpkin carving in the Midwest. Between the heat and humidity, I think our masterpieces may need to be thrown away already. Oh well, we still had fun!

I also went to the Food & Wine Festival with some Purdue girls. Purdue's October break was this weekend, so it was great to see them! We tried wine, had margaritas and beer. Then I took my Purdue drinking buddy to The Pub. That made for a good time, especially because the Elvis impersonater was there. We had so much fun and it was great to see everyone!

I'm going to Tampa this weekend, so I'm looking forward to my real last weekend before I'm officially working full-time. As much as I've wanted a job, it's kind of sad to feel like your youthful freedom will be slipping away within days. I'm obviously excited about the job, but let's be honest: college and these last 5 months after college haven't been anything difficult. I've been able to do pretty much whatever I wanted because of the lack-of-schedule I've kept. I'll be glad to have a routine again, but I'll always appreciate the free-time I've had.

Also: I'm counting down to my Purdue visit! 9 days...And I can't contain my excitement to see my family, friends, Harold's, and my beloved Noodles&Co.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


Dear Background Checkers/Drug Testers:

Hi there. My name is Meredith Evans and I was ready in May to start my new job. I understand the importance of background checks and drug tests. I think it is a good thing to know as an employer if your future employee is a drug addict or a serial killer. From the documentation provided, you see that I am 22 years-old. My background consists of living in two different places and a couple of credit cards. There is also a lack of violence, I tend to be a peaceful person. My dependence on drugs or alcohol is zero, as my drug test will feature.

So why is that it's been over a week since all this information was submitted and yet, I STILL can't start my job?

When you have an answer, please respond accordingly. And hurry: I may have to start a dependence on drugs to get me through the next few days of not being able to work.

"Employed-But-Not-Working-And-Would-Like-To-Know-When-I-Can-Start" Meredith Evans

Monday, October 6, 2008

One Saturday Morning

I had to go for a drug test for my new job. No big deal, I don't do drugs, so I have nothing to worry about.

At 6:30am on Saturday, I groggily dragged myself to the drug test facility. They open at 7am, and at 7:20 when I arrived, the place was packed. Being a walk-in, you just wait until they have space for you after the appointments. So, I brought a book with me and listened while this lady complained that her elderly parents had to sit and wait for 45 minutes, even though they did NOT have an appointment. Then I get called back. They take my driver's license and my forms and I sit and watch people with bandages on their arms from blood tests. Then I get nervous. I hate needles, I can handle getting a shot, but I prefer my blood in my body. I'm thinking, maybe they'll have to do blood work AND a urine test! YIKES.

Between the fear of needles and the fact it was about 60-degrees in the room, my anxiety could not be comforted. Then the doctor came to get me. She pulled me over to a little counter and asked me if my name was Evans Anne. It is now that I see the Indiana driver's license makes no sense because your last name is printed above your first followed by your middle.

Once that confusion is over, I ask her if it's a blood and urine test. To my relief, it's just a urine test. She hands me the cup, has me rinse my hands, then closes the door. A few minutes later, she taps on the door. I open the door to say "I've got nothing." Frustrated, she orders me to drink as much water as possible and I have to wait another 30 minutes. Feeling like a failure, I hang out for awhile drinking water out of a cone cup (which is difficult to drink out of, two-year-olds were more coordinated with it than I was). About 40 minutes later, she comes back and motherly asks, "are you ready now?" I nod. This was a success.

This whole time frame was about 2 hours. It took me two hours to pee in a cup.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


1 summer, 5 months post-graduation, 10 books read, and 1,031 miles...and I have a job.

That's right, you're not seeing things, I have a JOB. Doing what I've wanted to do since I walked across the stage at graduation. Yes, I've been working at the Pub, but you know that wasn't what I wanted to do with my Purdue degree.

In previous posts, I mentioned my meetings/interviews with the folks at Junior Achievement. They decided to offer me the position of Education Manager for JA Osceola County, one of the counties I live right next to. I will basically be coordinating and keeping track of the volunteers we send into the Osceola County school system (which is HUGE, by the way) to teach kids about their community and how to be good citizens. I loved JA when I volunteered for them and I am THRILLED to be working for them! They are doing my background check now and I have to take a drug test, so once those are done, I'm good to go! When I got the call about the official offer meeting I was going to have this week, I almost started squealing with delight on the phone, but I played it cool. When I hung up the phone, I shouted with joy and jumped up and down. I was house/dog-sitting for my manager at the Pub, so the dog looked at me like I was nuts. Which may or may not be true...

I'm looking forward to meeting so many people in the community. I'll be getting involved with the Chamber of Commerce, meeting the Board of Directors, attending meetings and trainings, basically a bunch of things to say, "Hey! I'm the new girl and I'm ready to work!". I wanted to work for a non-profit after graduation because it's great work experience and you're doing something good for society. The regulars I met at the Pub were very impressed and proud last night to know someone who's actually going out in the world really trying to make a difference. And these were people I don't know that well, so that was so sweet of them to be so supportive.

The Pub has been a blast. I've met so many great people, both staff and customers. That part will be hard to leave. I plan to visit, of course, because at this point I still think the food is good. And sometimes you just need a pint with the people who helped you pick yourself up when you moved over 1,000 miles from everything you've ever known. Now that I've given my official notice, I told a couple good friends of mine at work. Boy, news sure does travel fast. But when I explain why I'm leaving, people see I'm excited about this opportunity and they are excited for me.

I feel so blessed for my life. I have so many supportive people surrounding me, whether they are happy I'm taking this job or not. I have great friends who are thrilled I'll have a job that allows free weekends and paid vacation time. And a shout out to Miss Naomi sending me roses as a congratulations for the job! It was a wonderful surprise when I got home from my meeting yesterday! Thanks to everyone for your support during this not-so-long but difficult job searching time. I think I found something I'm going to love doing and I can't wait to take on Osceola County!! I'll keep you guys posted on when I start, people I meet, events I'm doing, things like that.

In other news, my current obsessions are as follows: already researching for my job, even though I won't get paid yet; the Twilight series; car and phone shopping; and seeing some sassy ladies in about a week and a half!