Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A "Comblogeration" of Things!

I feel like I haven't blogged in ages......but, in reality, a week and a half isn't ages. [Unless you consider that I'm already past the halfway point of my severance.......then it seems like ages!]

I have so many things to share and not enough time to devote a blog to each topic, so I'm throwing them all together.....thus: a comblogeration of things!

First, an update on the job situation!
I'm still unemployed and the pickings out there are slim for the type of job I'm looking for. I'm willing to consider jobs outside of my immediate expertise, but I will not take another sales job as long as I live. The very least of the reasons being this: I really don't care for sales people. Very few of them are genuine and it's so draining to have to plow through all the BS that so naturally falls out of their mouths, let alone deal with an office full of them. [I realize this is a horrible generalization, but one day I will write of the first-hand horrors I've been witness to and you will understand my feelings.]

So, I've been proceeding with my plans to go back to self-employment and I am working on a line of cute, functional and trendy hats and bags! I'm in the process of making the spec samples to photograph for my soon-to-be website......if all else fails and I don't find a job in the next 2 weeks, I will make the best of it! I'm also working on a line of casual wear that I think is going to be incredible if I can just get it all from my brain, to paper, to cloth and then to the website!

I had a job interview Tuesday. The job I applied for was filled, but they interviewed me anyway. While I was there, I got a lead for a copy editor job at a local paper........AND their offices are in the building next to the one in which I used to work! I really would love to work many of my friends work there as well and I miss eating lunch with them!

Second, an update on my car situation:
My parents delivered my car to me last Saturday!!! When my dad found out I had the interview on Tuesday, he rushed to get it to me! There are a few minor things he still wants to have done, but for the first time in 3 months, I can go anywhere I want, anytime I want and on my own terms! No more mooching rides for me! BUT......if any of you ever find yourself in need of a ride, hit me up! Ive got to start "paying it forward"!

Third, links to sites I really enjoy:
Stumble Upon - this site is incredible....and also a lot of fun. To use it, you have to add a tool bar to your browser (I normally hate to add things like that) but it's soooooooooo worth it. After you download the tool bar, you select interests from different groups of categories. Once you've done that, you're ready to start! You just click the "stumble" button on your tool bar and it will take you to a random website based on your preferences....then you can select a thumbs up or a thumbs down for the site it takes you to. I have found some of the coolest and most interesting sites since adding it to my tool bar. [a special thanks to Sugar D for letting me in on the secret!]

Site Meter - If you're a blogger and you're interested in tracking visit stats for your blog, I recommend this free tracking site! Not only does it track how many visits your blog gets, but you can tell where the person is located (just city and state) and if they linked to your site from another site. The thing I love the most is the strange google searches that lead people to my blog............the world is full of some strange people looking for some strange things!

Disc Drop - Remember "Plinko" from The Price is Right? Well, this is the web version of that game! I could play this for hours, which comes in handy since I'm unemployed. Check it'll love it [btw.....this was discovered through Stumble Upon!]

Netflix - Okay....I know one would have to have been living under a rock to not have heard about Netflix, BUT have you heard about their Instant Viewing option?!?! I pay $10 a month and can have discs mailed to me (which I do from time to time) but what I use on a daily basis is their instant viewing option. There are thousands of movies and TV series (whole seasons) available at the click of a button to view on your PC! That's how I view 98% percent of all movies I see nowadays. Quit wasting your time with Blockbuster.......even if you just have discs mailed to you, it's a much better deal all the way around.

Make-a-Flake: Snowflake Maker - Another great site I discovered from Stumble Upon! It's also fun to do this with the kiddos if you have any......I just like to make snowflakes!

Oh Joy! - A blog that I find so visually appealing I could just look at it for hours! It really appeals to me at my very core.....I hope you enjoy it, too!

Scentsy - For those of you would like things that make your home and workspace smell good, check this out!!!! These are the most decorative, flameless "smell goods" I have ever seen.

Fourth, update on Breaking the Rules:
It's not so much for me.
I tried was "ok", but following my tried and true rules seems to be best for me at this point in my life.

Fifth, update on my mood:
I'm in a very good spot emotionally, all things considered. It took a few weeks to hit an even keel, but I haven't had any really bad days in over a week. I think that's a sign that the worst is over. It's nice to be back and blogging!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Blah Blog?

I've been meaning to post for a few days, but just haven't been able to make myself. I don't want to write a post that is negative or sounds as if I'm wallowing but some of that can't be avoided. I'm trying so hard to maintain my optimism, but the simple truth is this: I feel really lousy....and I hate it, but please bear with this post because it won't be entirely depressing (I hope).

Three weeks ago I would have given my right arm for 2 weeks without having to go to work....the big difference is I don't have a job to return to and that, I'm finding, is very tough to handle. I never really thought that my self-worth and identity were so wrapped up in my job. I'm finding insecurities I never knew were there and I'm trying my best to learn to deal with those. For the most part, I do okay but there are times when it sneaks up, without any warning, and I find myself scraping bottom. Certainly not a place I'm used to being and not where I want to stay for any length of time.

My parents came yesterday and hauled my car back to their house for some major repairs. It was no easy thing for me to ask my parents for help, but at this point in my life, in these circumstances, I had no other options really and I'm so thankful that I have the kind of parents that will always be there for me. Unconditional love is an amazing thing.

As far as day-to-day life goes, the only thing that has remained constant from before losing my job is my rambling, 8-hour IM conversations with a friend. Without that, I may have really plunged into the depths and not returned to the surface because it's that 8-hour stretch, when everyone I know is working that really does a number on my head sometimes. But, this friend...he puts up with my moody ups and downs and remains a calming force in my life when everything else seems so unstable......and he does it just because we're friends, not because he knows I need that kind of an "anchor" at this particular moment in my life. I'm not sure if I'll ever be able to repay him for the extreme kindness he has unintentionally shown me, but hopefully, one day, I'll have a chance to return the favor.

Well, I guess this could have been far more depressing, but I'm hoping it's my optimism and some of the kindest friends in the world keeping it to a minimum. I just have to hold on to my belief that nothing happens by accident........and maybe one day I'll understand this chapter in my life.

For now, I press on.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Virtual Mix Tape for You- Volume One

As a child of the 80's, I can't even begin to tell you how many mix tapes I've made over the years. There is an artform to the mix tape....picking just the right songs to set the mood you desire or to convey a message to that special person. Sometimes the mix tape is used to introduce people to songs you love and think the whole world should know!

This is my virtual mix tape for all of my readers! I've been listening to a lot of music that makes me happy and I wanted to share some of them with you. Click on the title to link to the song on YouTube or

"I Don't Feel Like Dancing" -Scissor Sisters...This song makes me smile and I love the retro disco sound!

"A Case of You" - Joni Mitchell...hands down, this is my favorite Joni Mitchell song. "I could drink a case of you and still I'd be on my feet, oh I would still be on my feet."

"Superhero Lover" - Daze...this takes me back to my days of going out and dancing with Jeff when I lived in Tulsa. Nothing but good memories wrapped up in this song.

"Where's the Playground Suzie?" - Glen all-time favorite Glen Campbell/Jimmy Webb collaboration! I can remember singing this song with the radio when I was 4 or 5 years old.

"Need a New Sunrising Every Morning" - Ronee Blakley....from Bob Dylan's 1975 Rolling Thunder Review show, this song should have become a classic and I'm doing my best to spread the word!

"Like a Bad Girl Should" - the Cramps [warning.....the words and video to this song are for adults only!] This song brings a smile to my face because it reminds me of a very special guy who rocks.

"All Consuming Love" - Alice Peacock..I love Alice! Every song on her self titled album speaks to's like she got inside my head a wrote every song for me! I love them all but this is the one I've chosen to share.

"Smells Like Teen Spirit" - Tori Amos...this is the best cover of a song I've ever heard. The sadness of the song really comes through because of the slow acoustic spin she puts on this seemingly non-sensical song. Haunting......truly.

"Where the Streets Have No Name" - U2.....classic 80's of the best videos ever!

"Dancing Barefoot" - U2......a cover of a Patti Smith song and somewhat obscure which is why I love it so much!

"When I'm with You" - Sheriff.....I had to have a rock ballad in the mix and this one is one of my all-time faves!

"Make Me Smile" - Duran Duran.....this is my favorite 80's band. My room was plastered with their images. This is another obscure title from well-known band.

"Is This Real?" - Lisa Hall.....just to mix it up a bit, my favorite trip-hop song.

"Starlight" - Muse.......they put on the best live show I've ever seen! Add a star in the title and I'm hooked!

My Happy List

This is an old blog I pulled from my myspace blog an effort to stay upbeat despite my unemployed status, I've been reading through the series of blogs I wrote about my life philosophy. For some it will be a repeat, and for that I apologize, but I need to keep this fresh in my mind. And, I have made a few changes to the original post, so some of it's new!

The Eternal Optimist?

I've been accused many times in my life of being silly or frivolous and maybe there have been times when it was true, but more often than not, it was unbridled optimism and enthusiasm that was mistaken for frivolity.

I don't know if I was born optimistic or if it was a trait my incredibly wise mother gradually instilled in me. Most likely it was a mixture of both....the old heredity vs. environment debate. One day I'll write a blog about my mom and her incredible wisdom, but today I'm writing about happiness and finding it when you need it most.

Despite the trouble I've had with my home over the past year and a half, my home is my place of peace and refuge for me. When I need to get away from the stress of the world, that's where I want to be. But, on those rare occasions where my mood turns dark, I pick myself up and get out of the house........I don't want to have bad feelings associated with my time at home, but in turn, I think getting out of the house and finding something to do helps improve my mood so it's a win/win situation!

Once I'm out the door, wondering where to go, this is how I determine what I'll do. I ask myself, "What makes me happy?" And then I do those things. What amazes me, is when I ask other people what makes them happy.....many don't know how to respond. How can that be? (See, even now I'm dumbfounded) Life is what you make it and you can't always wait for happiness to knock on your have to go where you (hopefully) already know it can be found. Here are some of the things that make me happy and some of the places you might find me when I need a little more happiness than usual.

My Happy List

-Glass.....something about the transparency, I think. I'm lucky to live in a city with the largest permanent collection of Dale Chihuly glass. A trip to the OKC Museum will quickly put a smile on my face.

-Roller Skating- I keep my skates in the trunk of my car because I never know when I'll need to roll!

-Books/reading- I might end up at a park with a blanket and a book or at B&N where I can read and have coffee.....either does the trick.

-Family- All of my family is special to me but specifically my nieces and nephews. Nothing cheers me up like talking to them.....and hearing them say "I love you" makes everything right with the world.

-Friends- many's the time I've spent long days hangin' with Jess and her family (which is almost like being with family). Anytime spent with a good friend is a good time and I'm blessed to have some incredible friends who always make me happy!

-Singing/Music- whether I sing at the top of my lungs to music in my car or I go for some karaoke, music always sooths my soul.

-Stars- sometimes I'll drive out, away from the city at night just to see the stars. Having grown up in a rural area, I miss the clarity of the stars away from the city lights. Also, since I collect stars, I've started a new project with my's too involved to mention here, but it makes me happy too.

-College football- in the fall, this will always do the trick!

-Baking- I love to create new recipes!

-Lips- okay, I know this one seems strange and quite possibly shallow, but I love a nice, full bottom lip on a man. Looking at a picture of Christian Bale (who has many more fine traits besides a killer bottom lip) or Ralph Finnes can always make me smile.

-Writing- whether it's a poem, a blog or just an e-mail to a friend, writing helps clear my mind and restores balance and happiness.

-Breathing- I'm not being funny. Taking time to really slow down and breathe can do wonders! I firmly believe that all the years of proper breathing I learned while singing in all manner of choirs has helped me in so many ways. Breathing calms me, helps me manage stress and pain. I think everyone would feel better if they would slow down and really breathe occasionally.

So, am I an eternal optimist because I feel nothing is so bad I can't find something to shake it off? Maybe. Probably. I'm happy with either. (See, I can't help it!)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Day Two of Unemployment

It's not even noon on my second day of unemployment and I'm already stir crazy! It's amazing how just knowing I have no job to go to makes me feel so strange. I really feel like I need to take a bit of time to get some things in order before I start to search in earnest for a new job, but given my mood today, I don't know if I'll make it to Friday without putting myself out there for a couple of things.

I've spent most of my morning looking into some places to list some of my clothing designs for sale......I just need to get some pieces made to list and that will be a way to bring in extra income that will hopefully continue even after I have found a "real" job.

A friend of mine has offered to build a website for me and my designs which will also help in the long run......but nothing is happening today and that's what's making me crazy.

I work best when I know there's a plan but at the moment, my plans are sketchy, at best. I have a vague idea of my timeline for the next six weeks, but without knowing when and where I'll be working, I feel like I'm just tumbling along.

Well......I feel like I haven't said much of anything, but I needed to get these things off my chest and out into the blogosphere.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Only Four Things.....

A week or so ago I was tagged by my friend Rebeckah over at Life with Kaishon, so here's my Four Things meme. Go check out Rebeckah's blog!

Four Places I Go Over and Over:

1. The internet (I probably spend too much time there, but it keeps me connected)
2. Jessica's House- I love to spend time there with her and her family
3. Until this week, Work....but I'll be doing that everyday again, soon enough
4. My Happy Place- it keeps me sane.

Four People Who E-mail Me Regularly

1. Jessica
2. Kelly
3. Aim-Dawg
4. various peeps from the Top 5 group

Four Places I'd Rather Be Right Now:

1. With Sugar D
2. On the beach
3. Anywhere with my nieces and nephews
4. Eating sushi

Four TV Shows I Watch
[I only watch shows once the whole season is available on DVD]
1. Gilmore Girls
2. Weeds
3. Heros
4. Ballykissangel

Four Things I Have for Breakfast

1. oatmeal
2. a tasty orange (thanks, Sugar D!)
3. COFFEE!! (and NO ONE wants to deal with Heather BC!)
4. beef jerky.....I know, not very breakfast like, but protein stays with me longer.

Four Animals I Like Best

1. Dogs
2. Monkeys
3. Horses
4. Cats

Four Beaches I've Been to

1. Clearwater Beach, FL
2. Daytona Beach, Fl
3. Foley Beach, SC
4. Carolina Beach, NC

Four People I'm Tagging to Do The Four Things Meme

1. Jessica at Overflowing Bookshelf
2. Jessican at Fustian
3. Lil Jen
4. Kelly (you can leave your in the comments on my blog!)

Thursday, October 2, 2008

A New Beginning

I didn't have a chance to post an update last night and I didn't want to leave another hastily written post since I've neglected my blog so much lately.

I did, in fact, lose my job yesterday. The feeling of panic while waiting to hear my fate was not something I enjoyed and it's also not a feeling I've had very often in my life. Over the years I've tried to hone my life philosophy into something that will inevitably see my through the toughest situations and challenges in my life. I'm happy to say, that my views on life have served me well and have made this ordeal seem much less a tragedy and totally a blessing. Although the loss of my job has nothing to do with job performance, it's still hard to separate myself from the work I put into the world. Everything I do in life is personal to me. In my opinion, there's no other way to see it.

I've had plenty of issues with the tone and atmosphere where I work, but as with almost every place I've worked, there are always a couple of people who make work a little more fun and bearable. For those reasons, I mourn the loss of this job.

When I leave my office on Friday, it will be the first time I've been unemployed since I was 16 years old. I have decided to take a week off to rest and recharge before I start my job search and I'm not sure how I will feel with free time on my hands. I've always had an irrational fear people will perceive me as being lazy so I always have tons going on in my life. But, how will I feel without the largest portion of my week devoted to working? I have no idea, but I'm not scared to face the future because, ultimately, I know what it holds for me.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Waiting Game

Short post today because I don't feel much like writing as I sit and wait to see if I'll be laid off today.....I'm numb and not sure how to feel or how to proceed.

So.....instead of talking about any of this, I'm going to post a video of my favorite performance from last week. Listening to it makes me happy and Lord knows I need that right now.