Tag Archives: work

Our Good News

I vaguegrammed recently about celebrating some exciting news, and now that everything is officially in place I can tell you what happened: last Thursday, in the span of about two hours, Dave received a big promotion and I was offered an awesome new job. Fists were pumped, celebratory cupcakes were eaten, and there was much AC Slater-style rejoicing.

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You may be wondering why I’m starting a new job when I just changed jobs less than a year ago. Last November, I applied for a job as a social marketer for a behavioral health program out on a local Indian reservation. It turned out that they already had somebody in mind for the marketing role, and so they asked me to become the program director instead. I decided to take a healthy risk and accept the position, and I’ve spent the last eight months learning about program outcomes and evidence-based practices and reducing mental health disparities. All awesome things if the mental health field is your passion. And I discovered that for me, it’s not.

That’s not to say I hated my job. I really enjoyed the youth and families I was working with. I loved my boss. I had lots of fun with my coworkers. I learned so much about Native American communities and the injustice that tribes have suffered at the hands of many generations of Americans. But I didn’t wake up in the morning excited to go to work. The days would go by so slowly, except on the rare occasion that I’d get to design a brochure or build a newspaper ad. Those days would fly by, and then I’d spend the drive home berating myself for taking my career in a different direction and wondering why I was such a giant idiot.

Overreacting. It’s what I do.

But then! A friend dropped my name in a conversation, which set off a sequence of events that culminated in a crazy awesome job offer. I won’t give too many specifics (Internet Boundaries!) but I will say this: I’ll get to design and write and be creative every day.  My 35-40 minute daily commute will be reduced to barely five minutes. I’ll be making more money. I know and like the people I’ll be working with. I’m even hoping I’ll have more time to blog!

I made myself a to-do list since it's been so long since I've blogged.

I made myself a to-do list since it’s been so long since I’ve blogged.

And as for Dave: He’s been named managing editor of the paper where he’s been a reporter the last several years. I think he’s as excited as I am, except instead of going on a celebratory shopping spree and writing a sappy blog post, he bought himself a bottle of 14-year Knappogue Castle Irish whiskey.

So that’s our awesome news. 2015 is shaping up to be kind of great so far.

NaBloPoMo Day 9: Flannel and Parades

I’ve been kind of obsessed with plaid lately, so I ordered this shirt while playing around online during a lunch break last week. It arrived last night, so I wore it to my city’s annual Veterans Day parade this morning. It was freezing (below freezing, actually), so I threw on my new flannel puffer vest over it (and added a sparkly necklace because duh). I like it so much that I might get it in other colors.

Flannel and Puffer VestALSO, it turns out I’m not going to get a three day weekend after all, due to a stupid website problem that developed at work on Friday. Long story short, a very important video on our website won’t play and I was informed by our web designer that it’s “probably an .htaccess problem.” I spent about three hours trying to understand what the hell .htaccess is, but all the explanations I found just made it worse. Example: “An .htaccess file is a directory-level configuration file supported by several web servers, that allows for decentralized management of web server configuration.”

And just like that, my relaxing weekend of watching Netflix in my pajamas has been replaced with trolling WordPress help forums and reading the free sample pages of Web Servers for Dummies on Amazon.

NaBloPoMo November 2013

I’m Back! (This is a Lazy Trip Photo Post)

Turns out, posting during my trip to Phoenix was more nonexistent than sporadic, but in my defense it was a crazy five days of booth time, conference sessions, and business dinners. Of course, I did manage to find a little time to relax by the pool (and even go on a few early morning runs):

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We stayed at the Arizona Biltmore, a beautiful resort whose design was inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright. Apparently it was really popular with old celebrities, and there were pictures in the lobby of Clark Gable, JFK and Jackie, and several Rockefellers vacationing on the grounds.

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The resort’s history is cool and all, but I was most impressed with the free jalapeno cheddar bread at the hotel’s restaurant. What can I say, the road to my heart is paved with carbs.

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This picture is to show you my favorite dress ever from Modcloth. I get so many compliments on it every time I wear it, although it definitely requires shapewear if you have curves. I swear by this slip from Kohl’s – it’s comfortable and magically sucks in the hip/thigh area, where all my fat cells like to congregate. (Shoes are from Target last year; these are super similar.)

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And finally, the beautiful California coast from the air. I loved being in the desert for a bit, but I was so glad to come home to mountains, pine trees, ocean, and seasons.

Hello From the Desert!

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I’m in Phoenix for work this week, so my posting will be a bit sporadic. (I can’t use that word without picturing Tai.) Pictured above is the awesome pool outside my room that I will not have time to swim in. Unless I fake being sick and get out of booth duty. Don’t think that thought hasn’t crossed my mind.

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The resort we’re at is beautiful, and so far my favorite thing to do during breaks is sip iced coffee while taking in the views.

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And as a bonus, here is what I wore to dinner with my boss last night:

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The attire was listed as “business casual,” so I took it literally and threw on a plain white tee with my pencil skirt. Travel wrecks my brain.

Have you ever been to Phoenix? Are there any great restaurants I need to try? Let me know in the comments!

Shopping for Conference Wear

I travel to several work-related conferences and trade shows every year, and turns out it’s really challenging to put together trip outfits that meet my desired aesthetic.

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Seriously though, it’s tough to find outfits that are professional without being boring. And can go from booth time to meetings to cocktails to dinner. And are comfortable enough to wear for 12+ hours straight. And don’t get too wrinkly in my suitcase. AND AND AND.

Usually I leave my outfit planning to the last minute, but this time I have given myself three  weeks to put together my wardrobe for an upcoming trip to Phoenix. I don’t even know who I am anymore.

I do have a few dresses that I tend to fall back on when I leave my packing for the last minute (so basically every single trip). This black peplum dress (with black patterned tights underneath) has become a staple for the inevitable opening cocktail reception, and looks great on its own or with a bright cardigan or blazer thrown over the top. I also usually bring along this little number from Modcloth for days I’ll be manning the booth for 8+ hours (it’s super comfortable and flattering, but Spanx are definitely recommended). I’ll need two more outfits for this trip, and I really want to purchase some ankle-length pants to bring along. Specifically, these:

The Limited Pencil Pants

Finding pants that fit me is tough (short waist + bigger hips = I often cry in fitting rooms), but these pants have gotten really good reviews from bloggers of all shapes and sizes. For some reason I never wear pants at conferences, and I think it’ll be nice not having to worry about flashing anyone the goods when I bend over in the booth.

A pencil skirt in a fun pattern is a good way to show personality without going overboard, and I’m currently eyeing this leaf patterned “curvy fit” pencil skirt on the LOFT website:

Loft Pencil Skirt

This one is also really pretty. GIVE ME ALL THE SKIRTS.

And because I’m always looking for an excuse to buy new shoes, I probably need to buy these, right?

Just tell me I’m right.

What I Wore to Work

Every month my city’s Chamber of Commerce sponsors a local business mixer, and every month I promise myself that I won’t undo all my hard work at the gym with the free wine and hors d’oeuvre. I have yet to keep that promise.

JCP Sheath Dress

I don’t always dress up for work (I wear a lot of dark-wash skinny jeans and blouses), but I always try to make an extra effort on days I know I’ll be interacting with people outside my core office staff. Tonight I’ll be attending this month’s mixer, and I chose to wear this dress because it’s both conservative enough to be business-appropriate and stretchy enough to accommodate the wine-and-cheese baby I’ll accumulate over the evening. Also because I was running late, and a simple sheath dress is pretty much the easiest thing to throw on before sprinting out the door.

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JCP Dress (on sale for $21.99!) | Black Pumps | Necklace (similar) | Watch (similar)

Is this look groundbreaking? Nope. But it took about 10 seconds to throw together, which left me plenty of time to gulp down two cups of coffee before heading to the office. I call that a success.

MIX MATCH

Odds and Ends

Busy workweeks are both a blessing and a curse. I do appreciate that my days fly by when I’m rushing to write copy before deadline and brainstorming new campaign ideas. On the flipside, when I get home at the end of the day I rarely have the energy to exercise AND make dinner AND write for my blog. And since I really love eating and being able to fit into my clothes, blogging is often what gets scratched off my after-work to-do list. Or, it would, if my to-do lists weren’t always lost in the bottom of my purse along with 70 pieces of gum and enough spare change that I could probably just quit my job and retire tomorrow.

Anyway, here are some odds and ends I keep thinking I should write about, but then don’t. Because of the busy.

Gone Girl

1. Gone Girl. I got a kindle for my birthday, and this was the first book I downloaded when I took it out of the box on Sunday. I’m about 78% through the book (thanks for keeping tabs on my progress, kindle!) and it seriously kills me to put it down at night. However. Everybody who has found out I’m reading it has been like, “I CAN’T WAIT TO HEAR YOUR REACTION WHEN YOU’RE DONE” and it’s kind of making me nervous that this book is going to go to shit at the end. I’ve been wanting to start writing book reviews on here, so maybe this will be a good one to start with.

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2. Peaches! I belong to a local grub club, and this afternoon I’ll be picking up a ton of juicy, organic, locally grown peaches. (Along with a bunch of other goodies from area farms including fresh garlic, summer squash, heirloom tomatoes, kale, and Walla Walla onions!) I’m not sure we’ll be able to go through all the peaches before they go bad, so I plan to use them up in some sort of crisp or crumble. Only I’ve never made peach crisp before, so now I’m on the hunt for the perfect recipe. So far this one from Joy the Baker is the leader, but if you have a favorite recipe please help me out and leave a link in the comments!

3. Striped top. Sometimes I get really excited over mundane articles of clothing. Like this striped top I got at Target over the weekend. It looks simple enough in the photo, but the fit is just right and the material is so flowy that I can barely feel it (a necessity when it’s 100 degrees outside). Basically it’s perfect and I want to wear it with everything. So far I have paired it with the jeans pictured above, white shorts, and tucked into a gray pencil skirt. I might have to go back and buy the yellow version.

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4. Exercise. I am in a serious exercise rut. My IT band has been giving me a lot of trouble on my longer runs, so I am under doctor’s orders to reduce my mileage and focus on stretching and strength training for a while. My plan was to run 3-4 miles twice per week as well as lift weights 2-3 times per week, but it’s been really difficult to keep up with the strength training. The heat is part of the problem – the last thing I want to do after work is complete 10,000 mountain climbers in my un-air-conditioned living room while Jillian Michaels screams that she knows 400-lb. people who can do them better than me. The alternative is going to the weight room at my gym, and while it is indeed cooler in there, the guys there grunt REALLY LOUDLY and it’s  hard to focus on proper form when you’re fiddling with the volume on your iPod to drown out the sex noises coming from the sweaty guy in the Jethro Tull shirt on the machine next to you.

In conclusion: I hope “Gone Girl” doesn’t wind up sucking, I may wear only one shirt for the rest of my life, and I need you to give me your favorite peach crisp recipes.