Saturday, March 9, 2013

Hello, 2013! (Part I)

[Insert joke about how long it's been since I've posted.]

[Insert sincere apology for my absence and heartfelt promise to write more.]

It's 2013! Time for a fresh start! It's certainly a time for big changes here at the Holtz household! Here's a run down of the last 3 months (over this two part series). Hang on to your hat, it's been a wild ride!

I told you I traded in the Runner, but we also traded in Mike's truck for a 2013 Prius 4, straight off the boat from Japan!
The Prius!!
It sort of looks like a spaceship inside and I think it can fly, I just haven't found the button yet....
It's been a really great car and it's already very clear we're saving a lot on gas! It's our only car, but there were only a couple weeks where we had to share it before Mike left for training in New Jersey, but we'll get to that later...

So our first road trip with the Prius was to Louisiana for Christmas! It did really well and we enjoyed having Sirius radio and Pandora on the way! In Louisiana, we got to spend time with Mike's mom and sister as well as our nephew and niece, Landyn and CJ.
Now kids, Uncle Mike is not a jungle gym!
While we were there, a line of storms rolled through Christmas day. To be safe, we brought Mike's mom to our hotel room where we all hung out, took naps and watched TV. When the storms got there, we went outside to watch (of course). Nothing terrible where we were, but I do believe there were some tornadoes further east that day.
Took a picture of this classic SLC (scary-looking cloud) from our hotel parking lot.
After a few days in Louisiana, we drove back home, did some laundry, pet the cat and then boarded a plane to Wichita early the next morning. While in Wichita, we caught up with friends and relatives and in between socializing, we worked on a puzzle that Mike and I got my dad for Christmas.
I think these two were more in to the puzzle than I was, but we all worked on it!
For New Year's Eve, we had some friends over. Sadly, due to widespread illness, our party was a bit smaller than we'd planned for, but it was still and enjoyable evening with Ryan Seacrest, Apples to Apples and some bubbly!

Steve shows off his winnings from Apples to Apples. 
On Saturday, January 5th, Mike left for Fort Dix in New Jersey where he would attend a month-long Army training course before his deployment to Afghanistan. I dropped him off at the airport with a tearful goodbye and hopes that it would work out for me to go visit him on the East Coast before he left.

The next day, Sunday, I was the volunteer coordinator for the American Meteorological Society's Weatherfest, associated with their annual meeting in Austin. I was worried that we wouldn't have enough help, but everything went very smoothly and I had a great time. I got to meet several new weather friends as well as meet up with old friends! I also handed off my work computer to a now-former co-worker. My employer had run out of grant money to pay for my position, so they had to let me go. I knew it was time to move on, but I certainly enjoyed my two years working from home. So....

On Monday I started my brand new job with Rackspace, the Open Cloud Company! I've known about Rackspace ever since we found out we were moving to San Antonio. If you Google "Best places to work, San Antonio" Rackspace is one of the first companies you'll see! I was so excited to get hired on as a Content Strategist. Basically, I'm a technical writer as well as an admin for a Knowledge Management System. It seems like a strange jump, but I was doing a lot of technical writing with the National Weather Service, so this is a very natural move for me.

So Rackspace is known for it's company culture, much like Google. There are vendors or food trucks for breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon-Fri. You do have to purchase your own food (we're not that much like Google), but you can choose from things like Freebirds and Rudy's as well as other local restaurants that bring in food! Also, when other Rackers (Rackspace employees) ask where my desk is, I tell them I'm near the slide. Yes, that's right, the slide.

They're also really big on t-shirts. I'm averaging about 1 t-shirt per week!
My first Rackspace t-shirt!
So Rackspace is more than just food trucks, t-shirts and slides. As you can see from their Core Values, they're a great company both for customers and employees. I have a one-on-one meeting with my supervisor every week and I'm on the cycling team and the running team. I'm even looking into joining RaxFit (free CrossFit for Rackers!).

Stay tuned for Part II....

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