Barista by day…

Super awkward anxiety driven individual every other part of my life. 

It’s so interesting that the counter, the apron, and the tied up hair can let me express myself a different way. Interacting with every customer and getting to know them, them getting to know me is no problem what so ever. But! The hair comes down, the apron comes off and I leave the store where I become a super shy, quiet individual. It doesn’t help that nobody recognizes who I am without the green apron or with my hair down. I have, I kid you not, had a full on half hour conversation with a customer and the very next day said hello to them in the cafe before I had gotten my uniform on for my shift and he gave me a look that said “please, somebody help, keep this crazy person away from me”. He had headphones on and I waved and he pointed to his headphones trying to indicate that he couldn’t hear me. Yeup. I kind of liken baristas to superheroes (I think I may have done that already once before), but this just furthers the point. It’s like a Clark Kent syndrome — put glasses on and he turns into a completely different person that doesn’t look like Superman at all (sarcasm isn’t as apparent through text…). Cue cute puppy picture that somewhat relates but doesn’t really but who doesn’t love a puppy picture!

superpuppy by day

Same with us baristas though, take our hair down and put on colourful clothing and we are completely unrecognizable. It infuriates me and amuses me at the same time, I wonder if I’ve seen any other baristas walking around that I know so well when they’re behind the counter but if they would walk by me on the street I wouldn’t give them a second glance.

Although, 4 years ago I would not be able to even speak to a customer as easily as I do now. Sarah in front of the bar and Sarah behind the bar were the exact same person. I would be so timid and quiet but now, no one can shut me up. I can honestly say that Starbucks has had a pretty positive impact on my life and I’m hoping that Starbucks Sarah will be able to exist without hiding behind a bar.

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Wild Rose Herbal D-Tox: Day 3

Day 3

11038391_10152883595973246_5460040942826707799_oYou may have noticed that I skipped Day 1 and 2. Those 2 days were slightly a hangry blur but I will update once I remember what I ate those days. I finally got to grocery shop properly and was able to get some quick and easy ingredients to make detox friendly food.

The first thing in that picture is guacamole. To be honest I never actually looked up a recipe so I made it to what I thought guacamole would have. It turned out quite delicious actually, and I could eat it with the chicken meatballs that I made.

The chicken meatballs were awesome. I made them meatballs because I couldn’t find my meatloaf pan. This actually turned out better than I thought because it was easier to transport. Super tasty! A tad dry but the guacamole acted as a sauce. I ate the two things with brown rice as a side 🙂

April Fools Day: Barista Style

So, I’m not actually sure of the history about April Fool’s day but here is a Wikipedia link for those who’d like to know http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/April_Fools%27_Day. What I take it as however is a day of pranking and hilarity. SO as a perma-closer (one who closes all the time) I decided that I would act in the spirit of April Fools day and prank our opener. I love him to death so this prank was purely out of love. I made absolutely sure that this wouldn’t impede on any of his opening tasks and wouldn’t slow down any of the coffee making business.

First off. My closer wanted to contribute to the prank so he printed out 8″x11″ pictures of scary faces from the exorcist etc. We taped those pictures in the fridges and I placed one on one of the tills that my opener would have to use.

Next we have timers that can be set to go off so I took 4 of them and hid them in the most obscure places. I set them to go off 5 minutes from each other before the store opened so that it would be dead silent and there would not be any customers.

My favourite prank was something that I wish I could have video taped. I placed clear tape strips across the door that he would need to burst through in order to deactivate the alarm. The store is dark when they get here and also it is 5:30am so I was pretty sure he wouldn’t see the tape. I put 2 or 3 strips loosely taped across the door so that when he burst through it would fly off and attach to him.

I was coming in today at 9:00am so I would be able to see him while it was still fresh in his mind. I was excited to see the results of my prank. Apparently the tape prank was gold. The other barista opener couldn’t contain his laughter as he described my friend running for the door and running straight into the tape, flailing his arms in the air as the tape stuck to his hair and clothes and arms. I really wish I could have been there to see it.

I’m pretty terrified for any type of retaliation.

Wild Rose Herbal D-Tox

Yes I have decided to go on a detox.

wildrose dtox

Yes I realize these things are ‘crazes’ and ‘fads’. But. I need to do something. Why? Because of Starbucks. Starbucks and their stupidly tasty new pastry line ‘La Boulange’. They launched it about a month ago now and ever since then I’ve been concerned that diabetes is just around the corner for me. Seriously though, their new food is great, it’s dangerous working on the other side of the counter. I’m pretty sure 90% of my thoughts are ‘I wonder what I’m going to eat on break’. Anyways, I need a restart. I’ve done this detox before and it was pretty successful. I’m not doing it to lose weight but if it happen in the process, yay! I’m doing it because like I said, I need a restart and push in the right direction.

Now, the way that I work is that I need to be challenged. In order for me to accomplish something I need to have it in the form of a competition, myself being my greatest enemy. For example I didn’t eat meat for a year just because I wanted to see how long I could go.

What I really like about this detox is that you can still eat. It isn’t a juice cleanse or a cabbage soup till you bleed cabbage, type of cleanse. You just aren’t allowed to eat certain things: gluten, dairy, and sugar. I’m lactose intolerant (sorry not sure if that’s TMI…) so I shouldn’t be having dairy anyway but I like to lie to myself and say I have limits that I am very well aware of so a block of cheese is totally acceptable. Gluten – so bread, pasta etc. Whatever I can eat rice so I’m good. Now, sugar. Sugar is going to be the hardest thing. This cold-turkey quitting of sugar is really the main reason I’m doing this. The amount of sugar that I consume scares me. Just before I decided to do this thing I had an entire milk chocolate bar to myself (it was on sale). I sat in my car trying to lick a piece of chocolate that melted onto the wrapper, that was my low point. Something needed to be done. This was the remnants of my last meal.

delicious dtox unfriendly burger

So, 12 days no gluten, no dairy, no sugar. I just got my tonsils out and practically ate nothing for 14 days. This is going to be a piece of cake.

Welp that was poor word choice…wish me luck!

Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7
Day 8
Day 9
Day 10
Day 11
Day 12

Tonsil free and loving it!

It is well after my surgery. 2 months now maybe I’d say. Would I take my tonsils out if I were able to go back in time and remake this decision? Definitely.

The process was not fun. It was a mission and a half. For 2 weeks I cursed past-Sarah for making this horrible decision to take out my tonsils. Recovery was a slow, painful, hellish process. And yes, I would do it all over again.

The main reasons why I needed to get my tonsils out were the following:

1. They were huge. They weren’t obstructing my airway but it sure looked like it. Only one was perma swollen but the other would get right to the swollen level in a jiffy.

2. I would get sick at least every month. I would be on a course of antibiotics to stop the horrible sickness multiple times in a year. I was pretty sure my body stopped making its own antibodies.

3. I snored. So. So bad. To be honest I don’t know if this has changed and I’m not sure if my family is telling me I don’t just to make me feel better.

So, as a tonsil free individual I would have to say that it was worth it. Usually I would have been sick by now.(I don’t count getting sick during my recovery as a fail from getting my tonsils out because my body was fighting to heal, not protecting me from germs.) But there have been so many sick people around me and I am still standing! Also, I can still sing, which is something else I was concerned about. I don’t hear any difference however. But, there are some sounds that are still funny to say. For example ‘L’s’. Super difficult when they’re at the start or end of a word.

I can eat everything and anything I want again. Nothing hurts. I was concerned at the beginning however because food felt weird when I swallowed. I could never explain it properly to anybody. My family would just brush it off. But, it felt as if I was letting more food through because my tonsils weren’t blocking it. Either way, I could still eat and it doesn’t feel weird now.

There isn’t any stiffness, which I read about being a common problem. I just see little scars but I definitely won’t miss them.

So, if you’re struggling and you are willing to go through absolute hell during recovery time, I’d say it’s something to consider. It was worth it for me.

Recovery Days 10-14

Day 10 – 14 (The worst days I can remember)

Do everything in your power, with all your might, at any cost TO NOT GET SICK. Dear. God. I thought that I had finished the worst of it, but the most horrible possible thing happened — I got sick.

Here was the problem: with my entire body trying to heal the holes at the back of my throat, all of my energy was spent on that. There was nothing protecting me from getting sick, my immune system was off doing other things. My sister had gotten sick and so I tried every possible measure to try and not be infected by any of her germs. We isolated each other in our own rooms, we never shared anything, I hand sanitized my hands every time I touched anything in the house, I was even being careful to not breathe the same air she breathed. But, I knew that resistance was futile. And, the inevitable happened. I had to be alone with her in an enclosed space. There was a problem with one of our cars so the only way everybody would be able to get to work was if I were to pick her up. My sick sister, in all her germy glory, would have to sit in a vehicle with me. I would basically be riding in a box of germs — but, you can’t say I didn’t try.

Me in a mask
Extreme measures.

This is what I looked like when I picked her up. You can imagine the stares I received when I would reach a stoplight and the drivers of other cars would glance into my car. I’d be there, jamming to whatever song was on the radio, looking like I was an escaped quarantine patient.

But, to no avail. All my attempts were for naught. I caught the cold that she had and the next few days were, to say the least, horrible. If you can imagine uncontrollable coughing and sneezing while the back of your throat is still healing is a lot worse than it sounds. Also, during this time the dreaded scabs began to fall off. It was a really bad experience altogether. There really isn’t any other way to describe it. This was my low point. I knew that once I survived this, if I survived this, I could conquer anything. This period of sickness and coughing/sneezing while scabs are falling off made me regret having the surgery. “What in the world did I do to myself?” was a recurring thought between tears and sneezes.  I am happy that this is now a distant memory.

Keep it up! Hair, that is…

One of the biggest problems I have at work is what I’m going to do with my hair. I’m probably overreacting — I have quite a few more pressing issues to deal with but when you have long hair and you need to have it up 90% of your days you get bored very quickly. So what do I do to deal with my sTRESS? (tress? get it? hush. I’m hilarious.) I head (ha…) straight for youtube tutorials.

To be honest I just put my hair up in a “fun bun” as I like to call it. Before I head onto the floor I usually ask my fellow baristas if my bun is fun enough, again I swear I have bigger problems at work even though this seems like the be all and end all of my stress.  Word of advice. Do not touch one’s fun bun. A customer whom I had never met suddenly had the urge to do so when I was in line in front of them…the outcome was not so fun.

This is how long my hair is, it’s probably longer now since it’s been a while since I’ve taken a shameless bathroom selfie.

hair not put up yet

But! Here is a hair tutorial video that shows a bunch of easy up dos. It’s actually super helpful and I still do a bunch of these when I need a quick alternative to my fun bun. My headband is my best friend.