Monday, December 28, 2015

The ever so talented Mallory MacDonald took a fun shoot of my family over Thanksgiving holiday.  We recently received the files and I'm in love with nearly every one of them. I'm also pretty in love with my ridiculous family that make it impossible to get a "frame-worthy" shot. 

In love my friends. 

I now run my company's recruiting efforts and I find myself regularly looking through the modern day wanted adds - known as LinkedIn and the Careers pages of different firms.  As I'm drafting role descriptions, I cringe at the overused catch phrases I essentially must use.  I see a lot of "highly motivated, creative and collaborative people" sought after, all to join a "fast-paced, friendly environment."  

I think if I were to write my own job posting, without concern for CEOs, Principals or... legal concerns, I'd throw in a few more signifiers, words like thoughtful, kind, patient, dedicated, honest and committed to the conversation, interested, big-picture thinker, little-details checker, tinkerer.

A tinkerer is so much more valuable than a problem-solver.  Problem solvers throw solutions at problems without first understanding why there's a problem, what caused the problem, and perhaps offering a couple solutions to the problem.  I want problem-thinkers before problem-solvers. Problem solvers use the equivalent of zip locks and duct tape and you get to fix a bigger problem right after. 

I'd tell the potential hire the truth, because they already know "fast-paced" is a paid synonym for "stressful" and "always behind a deadline." And friendly?  Friendly doesn't mean a thing in a job listing. Just start hiring kind, patient, thoughtful people and you'll end up with a friendly environment.  If what you mean to tell them is you drink beer together on Thursdays or go to movies together on Monday nights, tell them. But if you're just filling up words on a page that someone is going to skip over to read the responsibilities and minimal qualifications - stop. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

If you're coming to my house for dinner, it's not going to be perfect.  This is something I have come to grips with - and I wish I could put it as a disclaimer on the bottom of every dinner invite I hand out.  You know, how some people tack on a little note to please forgive the spelling of all messages sent from this iPhone? Well, "Please understand this invitation is not to a perfect 'event' - it's to sit in my home. And you might have to sit on the bed, or floor, because we only have 4 bar stools and 2 folder chairs. Hope to see you there."

When our wedding was over, I crumbled under the idea of inviting anyone over.  I hadn't expected everyone else's expectations for my wedding ceremony - the day I'd make vows with my husband - the day I'd be his bride. I had no idea it required me be a perfect party planner, event coordinator, etc, etc.  I was prepared for things to go wrong.  I was prepared to not do it perfect.  But I wasn't prepared for everyone else to be disappointed in me when it didn't.  So dinner invites weren't extended.  Because if I couldn't host a wedding, how could I host a dinner that didn't somehow fail my guests' expectations?

I still feel this pressure - we have meltdowns before dinners - neither John or I expected that.  I've always loved creating a place for people to be together.  I want to introduce new friends.  I want to show them commonality.  I want to offer comfort and a safe place.  And I love cooking.

But I live in 450 square feet.  We have minimal cabinets and storage.  And our first year of marriage has seen us toss away items week after week - what we once would have fought to keep, we pile into bags and boxes in the kitchen and drive to our local goodwill.

I don't miss those things - until we decide to host.  I have one pretty big plate.  It's a platter, I think.  One. It fits on top of our fridge, and it is just so pretty, so I keep it. And one tiny little wooden bowl that looks cool out on a party table.  We have some really awesome little forks and knives for serving up little scoops of melty cheese or olives too. And a gorgeous marble cheese cutting board. You'll see all of these things out at any given party we host.

Someday it will be nice to have the appropriate party-hosting dishware, but for now, I don't have the room.  And I kind of like that.  I'm okay being the newly-wed gal who doesn't have the matching set just yet... of whatever the thing is. I'm okay with having friends sit on the floor, or lay on my bed.

But I'm not okay with feeling other's disappointment - with having people arrive and silently say, 'oh.'

As my first little tiny, teeny 'party' since our wedding is coming closer - I keep fighting this huge anxiety.  I left the invite as a draft for nearly a week before hitting 'send.' I need to figure out how to auto-add that note.  "Proper serving ware not included" might do.  Or, "Don't expect too much please." Really, I just want to say, "Please don't be disappointed in me.  I just wanted to have you over for a glass of wine."

One of my best friends built me up last week, reminding me the handful of qualities I have to give - hopefully others can see the value.  So, you're invited to my home - please come be my friend - and enjoy the creative, strange use of what I had around to turn into ornaments.  I'll be sincere.  I'll be loyal.  I'll see things a bit differently - and I'll probably serve dinner a little late. I believe in value.  And I'll always try to show you how much I value you, whenever you're in my home.

I can't promise the rest.

When it really comes to the heart of the issue, I suppose really I could.  I just don't want to. I spend every day managing, coordinating, meeting deadlines, triple checking, impressing, proving my value - and I don't want to do that with the people I love. Let's just drink wine and eat good food and not stress about time lines, table charts and proper cutlery. I'm not here to impress you. I've already changed out of my business dress...Here, have a glass of wine.

I just want to feel a little closer friends by the time you leave.

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

While it hurts to not be there with them celebrating right now, I couldn't be prouder of my recent firm for winning the 2016 AIA National Firm of the Year Award.  I've been convinced all along this was the year!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Re: Credit

I've taken to putting most things on credit.  Some of you shriek, others not so much.  But the points! So long as you don't get lazy and wild and you fight off the interest by paying it off immediately, it's a wonderland. Or so it seems.  Most likely, we're paying far more even still than we're gaining, but that's for another day.  Today's thoughts center around the visuals for those credit card balances. Have you ever noticed that your current spending on your credit card is listed as a positive number?  Positive line item:  You've spent $505.00 so far on your card - greeeeeat job! 

But what happens when you return the $600 machine you bought last month, and had immediately paid off on your card?  Oh, I'll tell you - they give you a NEGATIVE number. Your balance is now -$95.00. They, the powerful unknown credit card they are not pleased with you. And to ensure you don't try this whole actually having money IN your credit card thing again, they'll ensure every time you look at your account, you feel terrible.  -$95.00. Negative. Just like you've overdrawn your account!  Doesn't it seem backwards people?  You have actual money in your credit card that you've paid over and above, and you get a negative.  You spend money you don't have, and you get a positive.  

Every time I open my account, it annoys me. Bad. And it makes me realize just how smart the whole set-up is.  Because seeing a negative sign in front of my account makes me feel so terrible, that if they actually did that with my credit card every time I spent money, I'd no doubt hardly ever use it! So they give you happy feelings - they flip things completely backwards, so you never have to think of using "credit" as spending money you don't have! 


Thursday, October 15, 2015

Here's what I'm thinking today: If this is the end of a season, I better choose to love it now, before it's too late.

I'm always looking back on 'what was' with fond eyes.  Years with LBL drove me mad, but also thrilled me.  So much was demanded of us from the first moments of each morning and to survive, Kristin and I locked arms and ran! It was far from "corporate success" and yet it had all the sexiness of it in many ways. We accomplished so much each day and we kept that firm running week after week. We praised ourselves for accomplishing what so many had failed to before us - and what the sane would have walked away from immediately.

And now, a third industry shift and three firms later, I'm a manager, approaching 30, and once again walking around in mandated pencil skirts and leather shoes. And I'm still day dreaming about the rigor and stress of college, my first job, even high school.  I alternate this with a constant desire for the next thing. And a sometimes borderline obsessive mental agony of not being able to wrap my mind about what that next thing is or how to bring it about.  Is it growing into a director in the design industry? Is it creating the consultant company I dream of?  Is it raising babies and writing out my sleepless fancies while they nap?  Whatever it is, it feels like it must be close... after all I'm just a year from 30.  Where will John and I be at 30?  Where do I want to be?

I know it is just a year, just another age.

Coming home from our grand trip, I didn't have all the clear answers and plans I had hoped to return with, but we did come back with a commitment to give my all, right where I am, for the next 6 months. And then to take an honest evaluation of life.  Six months suddenly seems very short - especially if I'm giving myself the opportunity to honestly consider a huge life change at that time.

So what if that is the end? What if in 6 months, I walk away from the career I have been building for nearly 10 years now?  What then?  I don't want to look back on it and suddenly wish I was still there - had chosen to love it while I could - had thrown myself into it with deeper commitment and energy.

I came home having reset my priorities - God and John at the top - we're building a marriage and family from the ground up here, and it needs time and commitments. But with that clearly stowed in my heart, it makes me feel more committed and free to give myself to here - now - 6 months. And that means work, this career, the one I have today.

So today is about smiles, spreadsheets, meetings, editing profiles, pencil skirts. It's about learning to bring out the best in others, encourage their abilities, draw hard lines, keep confidences, be kind in the most stressful of moments, and give my all. I'll drink too much coffee, work a few too many hours, hit the gym and keep a pair of tennis shoes at my desk.

So that whatever is the next now, I can live in the present.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Interviewing is a lot like dating.  A lot like dating. You must be charming, sincere, honest - but again, charming.  Be yourself so you know you and they can both be happy together.  But be your best self, so they want to take a chance on you. All the while you're looking for signs of closets, secrets, troubles.  Why did your last relationship end?  How did it end?  How many me's have there been? Talk to me about it - I want to hear you talk about it as much as I want to hear what happened.  Direct, but kind, we don't have much time. It's dating. 

And starting a new job, well, that's building a new friendship.  Dozens and dozens of unique and complex relationships all at once. It can be a hay-day for an analytical-creative thinker. This morning I was rehearsing with myself while brushing my teeth -  who do I want to be known as?  A Class-Act - Intelligent - Kind. There's too many new faces, too many new roles, but I can focus on these three things.  Class - Intelligent - Kind, be that, and that is enough. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

In exactly 3 weeks - 21 days - John and I take off for Europe. We'll have 5 weeks - or 34 days - of wandering the streets of Paris, Bilbao, Barcelona, Dublin, London, Monte Carlo, Nice and so much else and anywhere else we feel so inclined.

Disconnected - far away - together.

I think waiting to take our honeymoon may have been the smartest thing we've ever done.  We're ready to adventure, relax, focus, and just get lost together. Goodbye house, jobs, cars, pets and all other good and distracting things. Goodbye stress, pressure and a world of expectations.

Hello just you and me and Paris.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

I know I still haven't posted our wedding photos really.  And I know some of you are pretty upset about it.  Someday, I will do it.  In the meantime, this photo often pops up as my wallpaper on my screen at work.  It's one of my favorite photos.  That could sound pretty selfish - it's a photo of me looking all dolled up.  But that's not what this photo is of at all.

This is a photo of my mother's wedding dress and my new mother-in-law's pearls - the pearls she wore on her wedding day, and her mother wore on her wedding day - on me. It's a photo of a little boy who lived in the apartment downstairs of our first home.  A boy John and I visited in the hospital when he was first born, and we were first growing closer as a couple.  It's of a hen the boy's mom and I talked our men into letting us bring home as a baby chick one spring. His mom has done up my hair in curls and gentle twists for the occasion. Our friend, who once made my sister the loveliest for her wedding day, now dressed my lashes, lips and all the rest to make me look beautiful in this photo. And the photo, one of my best friends created with her camera. The presence unseen but felt; a dear friend close by. You can see a little gold nose ring, the one I'd wanted since I was 13 - the ring that inspired me into a new version of myself at 25 - someone who took risks, was confident, friendly, adventurous, conversational. Who did the things she dreamed. Who decided she should learn to play the violin and talk to boys. Who went to house parties, but showed up in sweaters. The 25 year old girl who met my husband, John Turner one night on a soccer field.

You can see all this in one little photo that wasn't ever on a shot list - in one little moment that hardly anyone saw on my wedding day.  This is what the photo is of, and it is one of my favorites. The details of the day rushed by and hardly anyone seemed to notice the little things that meant everything to us as we said I do.  But I see them here.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Grass and Other Things

We planted grass on Fathers day.  My mom prepped the lawn with truck loads of top soil while John and I were in Boston and when we returned, she came over on Sunday to help me spread the seed and peat moss. Now there are little green sprouts popping up all over the yard, making our home more like a little green paradise - at least to us.

When we bought the house, it had deep green lawns all over. We didn't realize of course that, that was because the contractor had just rolled out sod on top of crummy dirt.  Once we realized our danger, we did our best to make it stay - fertilizer, root booster, water.  And for a while, it worked.  But by this spring, nearly no grass remained... and much of what did, I removed through efforts to landscape and level our tumultuous little yard. The girls didn't help.  Craving their greens, they moved up what remained of the lawn each day, killing it further and further. So after many, many months of brown and dust - the girls are in their new coop and our dirt ground is transforming all at once into soft green threads.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

"I once read that adopting a religion does not mean you have learned the answers, or that you have discovered God. It simply means that you are committed to wrestling with it all. You are committed to returning to the thin pages when you don’t feel as if there are any words for you inside. You are committed to speaking to a God you cannot hear, and you are committed to looking for a God you cannot see."

-Design for Mankind

Prodigal Hen Returns

Oh hey guys - Mo is home. FYI.  She just came back one day like nothing ever happened.  After weeks of being gone, with one appearance somewhere in the middle, she suddenly was standing at the watering hole chattering with the other ladies. We locked her in her coop and gave her food and water. We weren't risking her running off again for another week.  The next morning, when we let her out with the other girls - all was as it had always been. She's back to just being our girl Mo, laying light brown eggs in the nesting box, slipping out of the yard to visit the neighbors while we're away, and returning each night to fly on top of the coop and fall asleep, waiting for John and I to pick her up and tuck her into her safe coop for the night.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

A Very Serious Chicken Post

Guys, check out the new coop John built me!  Okay, he built it for the four littler ladies in his life, but essentially, he made it this pretty just for me.  I love it so stinking much and while it will be bitter sweet to lock our liberated ladies inside for a couple months, it's going to be so fantastic to grow our grass back (hopefully), spray my roses and actually watch all my dahlias bloom rather than become expensive chicken lettuce. 

We decided to build a bigger coop for a few reasons.  The first is that the original one we bought, marketed as a coop for 2-6 hens, really shouldn't be used for more than 3 (MAX).  The hen house had one perch and only three of those fluffy bums could fit across it.  One girl was always the odd one out and had to sleep in a nesting box. We weren't just worried about her feelings, sleeping on the ground makes the hens more susceptible to pests and illness. Lately, they've begun picking at one another's feathers too, most likely due to the cramped quarters at night.  The size of the run is far too small as well, which is what led us to let them free-range every day. 

It's one of the sweetest things to watch them run around the yard, or be greeted by them at the front gate, but they take a lot of liberties.  Namely, all of our neighbors know them.  That's because every day while we are at work, they slip through the hedge (around all the chicken wire attempting to keep them in), or they jump our 5 foot fence, and they make their rounds through several neighbors lawns. They typically return before we do (but not always) and eventually they fly onto the top of their hen house where they prefer to perch for the night.  This means John or I have to pick each of them up one by one and place them inside their hen house before locking it up safely for the night.  Yes, each night we have to put our girls to bed. 

We don't mind too much.  But it is a bit limiting on vacation and travel.  Finding a person willing to let them out each morning and put them away each night can be asking a lot!  Thus the bigger coop.  We're hoping to take our grand honeymoon this fall and we're hoping to have the girls so well situated that all we have to ask is for a little check in once a week. Refill the water and food, perhaps give them a fun treat and que, sera sera. 

Being so large though, in such a tiny yard, we had to be sure to make the new coop pretty.  And easy to use, access and clean. John designed it in such a way that we can build a little chicken door/tunnel to a second optional run behind the shed later if we like. He also assures me he's figured out how he's going to use the rainwater off the roof to refill the girls water.  In his words, "easy".  We'll see. ;) 

We still need to attach the hardware cloth and door to the run, a chicken ladder, and other final finishes before we can backfill and landscape.  THEN, it's grass time!  The idealist in me is saying we'll get to seed the lawn this weekend. It might be a stretch.

Thursday, April 02, 2015

This has been an unusual week with almost no evening commitments for John and me.  Tuesday, my soccer game was even cancelled and the closest to being social we have come is John smoking pipes with the guys next door. So Monday I went for a run and made dinner.  Tuesday, I was in sweats within minutes of arriving home and sat and read for probably an hour before John got home and we decided to check out the Italian place up the street (egh).  Wednesday, we had a couple by to look at our MIL apartment, we cleaned up our own place, ordered pizza, finished 30 Rock and stared at our big European map that arrived. Tonight, we're seeing the Seattle Symphony perform Chopin's Piano Concerty No. 2 (courtesy of my firm). Tomorrow we spring into a full-fledge social weekend, with dinners every night and then into busy, busy work weeks for the next couple weeks. So tonight, I'm relishing.  Just plain ol' relishing. :) Weeks like these are rare and perfect.  

I hope you're finding the unusual and perfect parts of your week too right now. If not, look for it. ;) 

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

A coworker lent me a magazine - and it sent me into an online rabbit trail of researching the great curator Hans Ulrich Obrist. It wasn't until several websites and interviews later that I realized - I can put that on my list.  I can actually go visit the Serpentine museum this fall.

I  "almost" went to Europe twice in the years directly before John. I begged to go another two times during college (thanks Dad, grr). We day dreamed about getting married in Ireland.  Then we planned to go for our Honeymoon - then decided spring would be best - then pushed it back to fall due to work schedules. And here we are, committed and convinced we are going this fall on our much awaited European - Over - the - (honey)Moon Trip.  We still haven't bought airfare, and I know that's the only thing holding any of my excitement in check, but until we finalize our itinerary, at least our arrival and departure points, we can't! But I've already made my packing list - after much research on how to pack for 5 weeks in a carry on and still look newly-married chic. ;) I've also been collecting all the spots I know I want to go - trying to remember each of the cathedrals, museums or quiet streets that made me long for each of those cities over the past 10 years. We decided to save Italy & Greece for a future trip, so we've narrowed it down to the following: Ireland, Scotland, England (briefly), France and Spain. But when it comes to which cities and which neighborhoods.... good Lord that's a lot of decisions.  And how exactly to tackle them, seeing as my parents will be joining us in Ireland and can't head over until about 3 weeks after we'd ideally be leaving ourselves.

So decisions, decisions, and dreaming and dreaming!!  Our large map will arrive tomorrow or Wednesday and my Pinterest Board is overflowing. :)

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Baby Fever Side Effects

There are babies EVERYWHERE. So naturally, they're on the brain. I spent an hour this morning reading the biography of a historical figure John and I have talked about naming a boy after someday. Then this afternoon, I read this article on 10 words every young girl should be taught.  We aren't planning on having kids in the next couple years.  So naturally I feel the need to do a lot of research and thinking about it in my free time right now.  Or even my non-free time.  Naturally. But there really are a lot of things to figure out, and the more I think about them the less I know.  For instance, the article above. It's a major topic in business, the whole why is it that men cut women off or repeat their ideas and receive acclaim that wasn't given the first time it was voiced?  Why are CEO's and Partners primarily male?  Why do men get promoted up within a company faster? 

It's actually a thing, guys.  I see it happen all the time.  We have 9 partners at our firm.  And while we have tons of women who work here, guess how many of them are partners?  1. Exactly one.  In fact, we just added three new partners to the leadership team, all of which were men. Meanwhile, I watched several of the strongest leaders in our firm leave because their ideas and creativity weren't being given any room. They weren't asking for credit even - just for their ideas to be heard. Of course I'm taking about women. 

I used to be driven mad as a junior high and high school girl by the fact that certain guys had a habit of sitting next to me, and repeating my ideas louder right after me, and receiving praise/credit without ever feeling the need to so much as say "Actually, Kati just said that." Often, they'd give me a kind nod, like "good idea - glad we could accomplish this together."  And that was okay.  Annoying, but okay. It happened in college too - less often - and they wouldn't care to nod.  But it happened often enough. And in Bible Study too, to me and others. And I don't really want that to happen to my daughters. I don't know the solution, but I don't want it to happen. 

"We socialize girls to take turns, listen more carefully, not curse and resist interrupting in ways we do not expect boys to. Put another way, we generally teach girls subservient habits and boys to exercise dominance."

I'd like to teach my girls to be kind and take turns, but I'd also like them to be heard.  To know how to speak in such a way that people recognize they care, they know, and they have something their audience better listen to. I say "better listen to" because, frankly my work experience is showing me concerning things - for instance, kind people get overlooked. And I'm not talking about myself, I'm talking about my favorite people to work with - the ones who do their job well and treat others with respect and take pride in excellence. See, I don't know.  I don't want my children to be pushy, bossy, jerks who tread on others, but I also recognize a real issue where people don't care and unless you make them care. Be it about the promotion you deserve, the cultural problems you see, or your brilliant idea for how to reach new clients. And I'm not super great at it.  But I want my kids to be.  

Daughters and Sons alike, I want them to be both kind and respectful and influencing and impacting.  I want them to take turns and know how to listen - regardless of the gender, race, religion or reputation of the person speaking. Because none of those things are truth and none of them are clear markers of the ingenuity and creativity our world desperately needs. 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I am considering starting a journal called "Dear You - Stop Bitching."

Because, I'm seeing a hundred million beautiful photos of pretty babies on Facebook, and while it's not necessarily making me want to run home and build our own tiny Turner right this very moment in time, it is creating a certain peaceful dream that I escape to in times of stress.  And there are lots of times of stress.  Sustained - days - of - stress.

My body is aching with a slightly nauseous exhaustion right now, the very kind I fear will come with a newborn, which is 90% of the reason I don't have one.  The rest of the reasons make up the other 90%. But I'm exhausted. Little sleep, sustained high stress.  I'm currently at hour 13 for my work day in the office - that puts me at 107.25 total for the past 10 days.  I'll be here for another 4 or 5 more hours likely today.  And we'll do it again tomorrow.  But then, I'll be done.  Until the next proposal.

I've been here both of the last two glorious weekends.  All week evenings until at least 9:30pm.  And so, I stare at sweet photos of babies and escape to this future dream of not working under deadlines and not being surrounded by ego and pressure and weird relational conflicts. Awww, motherhood.  It'll be grand.  I'll be home to switch my laundry before it starts to stink and I have to restart the towels for a wash load - to undo their previous wash load (hello this morning). I won't get intense stomach aches that I realize are just my bladder about to explore because I haven't gotten up from my desk for four hours.  No, I'll pee, even if there are tiny fingers peeping under my door and a tiny voice asking "whatcha doin?"  Or "how are you?" At least someone will be taking the time to ask.  That will be nice.  Right?  I'll clean up my own home and handle my own family's scheduling, deadlines and concerns... rather than someone else's while ours are frantically caught up on while pdfs load or print jobs run, or I walk across the street to grab a smoothie for lunch.

Yes, a dream, motherhood.

But I have a Facebook.  And so, I know that no mother thinks she has it great.  You all say you have the hardest job on earth - and it's nonstop.  So, I'm guessing it really is pretty rough. Thus the journal.  I've had enough jobs to realize you begin to forget why you left them - just how bad they were - and how great the new one would be.  So my journal, Dear You - Stop Bitching, it'll be a place for me to write down right now the reasons this job, living, today, is really, really hard.  And why I'm excited about whatever the future job might be.

Because, I'm pretty sure I'll become a mom, and I'll miss this. And then, my kids will grow up and it will be time for me to consider rejoining the work force, and then, I'll miss parenting... or something.

The grass is always greener - there's always a next goal, a next identity and dream and set of challenges to go along with it. And I'll have my journal to look back on and remember, "Oh yeah, that sucked really bad too sometimes. So, stop bitching."

So I'm repeating to myself what I read on one of my mommy friend's facebooks today:  Just Show Up.  And right now, that's a big accomplishment. Maybe I'll sharpie that on the back of the journal.

Friday, February 27, 2015

I decided I'm unhappy where I am.

I've adopted a new practice of not complaining to you all about how much I work, or how long our to-do list is after work.  Which means, I've stopped blogging.  Because that is a lot of my life.  Not complaining, but working.  Okay, and complaining.  It's all of our lives.

And I'm unhappy with that part of life - specifically, the work part. There are parts I love and parts I hate.  And I'm secretly, deeply scared that if I were to quit, I'd be even more unhappy.  I'd have worked toward something so many hours and for what?  I'd have achieved no goal or real end except maybe monetary ones.  And money is never enough.

To change that, I set up some additional goals for myself.  Some training wheels to help me transition to what might be next for me.  I enrolled in a graphic design evening course.  And I took on two companies as a volunteer (read, unpayed) consultant for the next 6 months. Smart, right?  I mean it.  I am now helping two companies I believe in develop a marketing strategy and calendar.  I'm getting to play!  And I'm designing projects for a graphics/design expert each week that fall ridiculously short but are incredibly inspiring and out of my normal 8-5 box of our firm brand.

Right about then I also started on a massive multi-million pursuit at work.

So, I'm busy.  Real, real busy.

But at the outset of a 12 hour work day, I'm looking forward to 7:30 tonight, when I pour a glass of wine and sit down with my friend to make all sorts of fun marketing and writing plans!

And in the constant teeter-totter I'm wondering why I'm unhappy here.  And if it's me.  If it's right to be so concerned with finding a job that 'fills me.'

If you ever have similar thoughts, I suggest you go read this fantastic article: 7 Steps to Developing Career Capital. A couple years old, but still incredibly timely for most of us. Step 1 alone has plenty to chew on.  Do you agree? Partially? Me too, I think.  I'm still breaking it down internally.

I'm working on verbalizing more gratitude - out loud some, but in my head a lot. I figure that is a good test to see how much of my unhappiness with my current role is just my perspective and expectations.  Am I chronically unhappy because I expect my job to be full of passion already? Or is this truly just not the right fit ultimately? I'm writing down the craftsman perspective to keep near to me at work, What can I offer?  Maybe it's not what I can offer the world, because I can't see what I'm offering the world here, but I can ask in each encounter and assignment What can I offer? It doesn't even need to be something only I can offer.  Just, what can I offer?  Because that alone is giving something unique by most standards.  It's counter-culture.  Counter-generation to offer to just give.  Give not for what it can fill in you. And not because you feel it is required, expected or taken from you.  It is offered.  The power and capability is ours, to offer.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

It has been well over a month since I posted, which is eons in my blogging habits. The pressure starts to build as to how to re-appear.  And so, I return to you with this:  A photo of Johnny Cash being classy.  Because, it's his birthday.

And with this:  A little piece of over-sharing.  John and I have determined the names of our children:


Yes, we've determined to name our children (apparently, boys) after our favorite watering holes. Hudson is also in reserves, in case we decide to procreate a lot.

Maybe if we have girl we could name her "Staple & Fancy" - we could call her Stacy for short. Or, I guess we should go with Vif.