The Time That Is Given To Us

Frodo Baggins: I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.

Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.

Often times when life seems a little overwhelming, I think of this quote from The Lord of the Rings (both movie and book).  It helps me to keep perspective of the entire situation and to realize that we all face hard times in our lives.

My wife will arrive here on August 2nd.  It will be 4 months and 1 day since I last saw her.  Although it’s not nearly as long as some go through, it was longer than I would have liked.  However, things do take the course they take for a reason, and I tried to keep the above quote in perspective.

One interesting thing about this time period is the heavy reliance my wife and I had on just talking.  I realized that when we were together in Japan, there would be a lot of nights where we would just do stuff together, but not really communicate often.  I thought we had a good relationship, and we did.  But now I realize that I understand my wife more after these 4 months than I did when we were living together in Japan.  Once life resumes a normal pace here, I’m really going to keep focusing on this.  I discovered my wife is far sweeter, more sensitive, and more caring than I originally knew, and I want to keep learning more about her for endless years to come.

The other thing I learned was how wonderful our friends are.  When I left Japan, my wife was just getting to know the people that would soon become incredible friends with her.  These friends opened up their homes and hearts to her and did everything they could for her.  To these incredible friends, I would say you are no longer friends, but more like family to us.  We are looking forward to the day when we can meet again, and to a lifetime of great memories.

Often times we experience things in life that we would like to sweep aside and forget.  Often times life will hand us the proverbial lemon to make lemonade with.  I say instead of making lemonade with it, taste the lemon, learn the bitterness of it and realize that life takes these turns for a reason.  Once the bitterness of the lemon subsides, there is a realization that the lemons are a small part of life that makes the whole more enjoyable.  The bitterness of being apart from my wife has been more than repaid by the knowledge I have gained about her and the bonds that have been built with our wonderful friends.

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Attack Plan #2

With just over 3 weeks remaining, I need a new attack plan for the next exam.  Here it is from where I stand right now:

June 18 & 19: Financial Management & Capital Budgeting

June 20-22: Information Technology

June 23-27: Cost Accounting & Performance Measurement

June 28-30: Planning, Control & Analysis and Risk Management

July 1-7: Review like a madman!  (Up to 3 hours/night)

Preparing for this exam will be considerably harder since I am working full time and lose 2 hours a day to travel time.  Add to that that I will be doing some private English lessons during the week and it could get crazy.

It’s only a short time and since I can’t sleep too much at night anyway, I can burn the midnight oil. The separation from my wife is really starting to weigh on me emotionally and is taking huge chunks of sleep time away from me.  Currently, I log between 5 and 7 hours of sleep, but most of it is interrupted sleep since I get up every 2 hours or so for various reasons.

Her visa interview is July 17th.  We requested a change, but we’ll see if they are able to comply with it.  Even if they are, I’m worried she won’t have time to get her health check done.

Hopefully all this will be over soon and life can get just a wee bit easier for both of us.

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Exam Result

Financial Accounting and Reporting Exam Result:






82!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YIPPEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Although I’m now busy with a kick-arse job that keeps my mind occupied and focused, I have been missing Japan quite a bit.  One of the things I really miss is the food.  This is kinda funny since when I was in Japan I would miss American food while enjoying great Japanese food.  The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, especially when the people there are serving up food you haven’t had in a while.

Anyhoo, I was out and about today getting some work clothes, some good coffee and some ginger tea for when I’m at work and I came across this:


DORAYAKI!!!  Boy, was I happy.  I immediately left the shop, opened one up, closed my eyes and enjoyed it.  After finishing one, I got up and went in and bought the last package of them.  These will make a great snack for when I’m at work.

Things seem to be coming together remarkably well here.  All I need now is for my wife to get here and we can start looking for a place to live.  We are still up in the air if we want to rent a place or go nuts and try to buy our own condo in the Middlebury area.  There’s really no way to tell until she gets here and we see how much money we have saved up and what her job prospects look like.  Above all, it will be nice just to be able to laugh and enjoy having her around no matter where and when we end up living.

The only other thing on the plate is that I’ve rescheduled my Business Environment and Concepts exam to July 7th.  I should probably start studying soon…

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

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The Curve Balls of Life

Sometimes life throws you some things you just weren’t expecting.

A while ago, I wrote that I had a job interview. Well, I went to the interview and things went well. I got an e-mail about 3 weeks later saying they were impressed with my background and the interview was great, but they didn’t have a job available. FANTASTIC.

So I sent out a new round of resumes and finally got a job. It’s about 40 minutes south of my current location in a quiet little town. The only problem with this is it will not count as the work experience I need to get my CPA license after passing all four exams.

So I did some research and as far as I can tell, once I pass I’ll have 8 years to do the work requirement. That’s not so bad. So my new plan is to pass the CPA exam and keep that in my pocket. I’m also going to go for the certified management accountant (CMA) qualification. With these two combined, I should be able to make some big gains should I switch jobs. I’m also mulling a possible run at an MBA degree, but that would require a rather large hole in my head (and will burn a large hole in my wallet).

The people who I will be working for are great people. They are very personable, very kind and very focused. I don’t know if it will be a permanent thing, but I do know it will be a great place to spend a few years at.

Overall, life ain’t so bad at this point.  Now all I need is to get my wife here and we’re expecting that to be in the near future.

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Test 1: Done

Test one is done!  Pass or fail, I’m very glad it’s out of the way.  My hunch says I couldn’t have scored more than 65%, but we’ll see.  Knowing my luck, I just got 50%.

So what does one do after taking one of the hardest professional exams in America?

Crack open one of these:


Rogue Northwestern Ale, named so after the vessel Northwestern and its crew from Deadliest Catch (one of the only TV shows I actually like).

The photo is supposed to be upright, but feckin’ wordpress doesn’t want to put it that way.  You get the idea.

If I pass, I’ll post the score.  If I don’t and you don’t hear anything within a few weeks, assume the worst!

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This Is It!

Today is the day of the test and I feel like I am NOT ready. I don’t suppose many people do. It’ll be interesting to see how it goes as I have never done anything like this.

Pass or fail, either way it’ll be a good learning experience.

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