Friday, August 31, 2012

I'll be.

So, I just found out my mother is going to the Democratic National Convention to hear President Obama speak. Her friend won tickets and gave her one.

I could not be more excited for her.

As a present, I ordered her these:

This is exactly what you need on your feet when faced with the awesome task of meeting the President.



Amazingly, for an extra $20, I got them so they'll arrive tomorrow.  Pretty cool.

I hope she likes them.

Today, I spent a little money on myself, as well.

I got my hair did.

Who is that gorgeous stack of pancakes?


SO much better.  New lease on life.

I also took my sweet husband to lunch, took a nap and did some laundry.

These are all good things.

ae

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Bless this Mess


One of my favorite colleagues and I were talking about our desks yesterday.  He said he keeps his clear of possessions so that he can be “in the moment”.  I applaud his approach, but I can’t make it mine.  His desk is really nice.  I’ve seen it.  It’s nice blond wood, and you can actually see the top of it in places.  It’s minimalist.  It’s perfectly “him”.  He’s a Zen Buddhist, and one of the most focused people I know.

This is my desk.
The large bottle of Tums in the right side of the photo make my desk a highly visited locale.



This is my desk from a different angle.

A place for everything, and everything everyplace.


 I have been working here for five years, and in that time, I’ve come into a lot of “stuff”.   Much of it I’ve brought to the table, but some of it was gifted to me.  I’ve joked that the reason I keep my desk like this is so that when they fire me it’ll take me awhile to pack up, and that gives me time to spew obscenities and defame character and carry on.

I love my desk.  It’s perfectly me.  It’s controlled chaos.  I’m not as focused as my friend, but I think you can probably tell that I am pretty creative.

I do need to clean out some detritus, but I basically love everything about my desk.    

This tableau is probably the best part.

Hard to remember what inspired this, but you get the general idea.


Well, no, the very best part is the person sitting here, and the work she does, and the passion she brings to the company, and the joy she brings to her co-workers.   Yes, I think I’m all that…and so much more. 

But the monsters in the cubicle are pretty freaking great, too.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Endgame

So, when you have a dog in her teens, you start to wonder..."How much longer do we have?"

Recently, Lola has been falling over.  I don't know if she loses her balance, or gets winded, or has a tumor pressing on her brain, or what.  But she falls down.  And sometimes, she then pees.

You can Google that, and basically, my online veterinarians seem to think it's a seizure.  It's not.  I know that much.  I think she just loses her breath and falls out.

So, today, we had the old "fall down go pee" again, and I started to wonder, will I know?  What I mean is - will I know when the time comes and the most merciful thing I can do is have Lola euthanized.

I don't think we're there yet - the fall 'n' pees are spread weeks apart, and they are the only real indication of problems.  She still eats, drinks and plays like a much younger dog.  So.. sure, she has congestive heart disease which makes her wheeze and cough a little, she is covered in lumps (benign, fatty lipomas), and her hair is gray - but she still enjoys dog treats, she loves to roughhouse with Matt, and she seems to be able to do everything she always has, only slower, and for shorter bursts.

I hope I'll know. 

Am I in denial?  She seems happy and fine...

ae

Monday, August 27, 2012

Calico Allie Cat

So, several people have asked to see a photo of the hair disaster.  We'll refer to it hence as the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Here's the stealth cellphone photo I took at my desk:

Dark.  And Lovely.

The general consensus is it's fine. I think I may wait on professional intervention.  Find someone good a few weeks from now who can right this ship.  As it were.

Now, in looking at this, you may notice something a little different.  A little blingy.  In the proboscular region.

How could I possibly forgotten to tell you?  I got my nose pierced!

I did it while I was in Maine, and I love it.  Love.  LOVE.

In fact, I may order myself a little nose bling today.  something bigger than what's currently in there - and maybe a pretty color...

That's all I have.

ae


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Oops.

So, most of the time, I'm level-headed and pragmatic.  Except for the times that I'm neurotic and impulsive.

We were heading down to see my family this Friday, and since I've been traveling so much, I opted to take a day off to get ready.  I made jelly, I got a pedicure, and then in a last minute rush I decided to color my hair.

Well, that was a mistake.  My light brown dye turned my medium brown hair synthetic black.  Except in the spots where it was copper.  Basically, I was calico.

Fuck.

Well, I went down to Atlanta and attempted to pull it off - but I ended up having a meltdown this morning.  I don't like it when my vanity gets the better of me.

So, when we got back to Nashville today, I did a little research.  I found that washing my hair for about an hour would tone it down considerably.

Then I went to the drugstore and ended up getting this:

Call me the Rick Perry of home hair color.



I used it, and it looks better.  Less synthetic raven, more all over coppery.  It's still wet, but I think it'll pass for normal tomorrow - and then I need to find a salon where I can get some professional intervention.

So, what I've learned is this:

Vanity + Impulsiveness = Disaster.

ae

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Recalculating. Make a legal U-Turn.


So, when I was in high school, I was in a competitive problem solving organization called Odyssey of the Mind.  Our sponsor, a teacher who I still consider a friend and mentor twenty years later, used to urge us out of dead ends by saying, “Let’s see if we can try it another way…”

Which is the thought that I had upon stepping on the scale this afternoon after a month’s hiatus.  A month in which I ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted.  In quantities that even charitably, we could call obscene.

Now, no regrets on the month of gastro-debauchery.  I  ate amazing ice cream.  I drank coffee with actual cream.  I drank beer. I ate toast. With BUTTER.  I had my first lobster roll.  One of the nicest people I know prepared a meal (for me!) and it was incredible, and tremendous, and unforgettable (I haven't had someone plan and prepare a meal with me in mind in...a long time - I almost cried).  And we all smelled like meat and wood smoke for the rest of the day.    

Of course, I notice that I’m not as energetic as I’d like to be.  And all that travel has made my clothes shrink a little (uh…), and I’m pretty sure I caught a colleague eyeballing me today while playing that old familiar game “Pregnant or Fat?”*  I also notice that for the past week, my primary food group has been beige.  And my skin is breaking out with a vengeance usually reserved for teenagers who have an important social event.

So, let’s see if we can try another way.

One of my girlfriends and I are “in training” for a Warrior Dash at the end of next month.  She sent me the regimen today – nowhere in it does it mention eating doughnuts for breakfast (which I did at the Houston Airport at 6AM today – well technically, a doughnut and a bearclaw**).  I do need to start doing some strength work, throw on my running shoes and beat feet. 

I mean, let’s face it – I didn’t fall from the skinny branch of the family tree.  If you look at photos, you can pick out the gene pool from whence I emerged.  

But I can control my portions, eat less beige food and move more.  This I can do.



And I should.

Because if all you ever eat is lobster rolls, they cease to be special.

Right?

I don't think I could ever get jaded about lobster.



*Emphatically, not pregnant. So...fat, then?  Yes.

**And a sausage biscuit.  Dammit, leave me alone.  I'd had four hours sleep...

Saturday, August 18, 2012

N'amasse pas mousse.

I'm traveling these days.  A lot.  Now, to be fair, the Maine trip is all on me - it was a boondoggle, and self-inflicted.  It was also AWESOME.  I needed it.

Yesterday's trip to Seymour, Indiana - it was fine, but I could have done without.

Know what I really could have done without though?  A 45 hour power outage awaiting me when I got home. 

The power went out at 6PM Thursday, and they finally got it on today, Saturday, at 3PM.

Yep.

So, instead of remaking jelly today, I went out and got a massage.  Now I'm scrambling with laundry, and then in a bit, I'm taking my sweet husband to dinner to celebrate our 7th Anniversary.

Because I'll be in Seattle on our actual anniversary.

I'm thinking of taking Friday off to make jelly.

And sleep.

ae

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A few photos, in lieu of me actually writing something.

Loved this nameplate

This is where my sorority, Sigma Kappa, was founded in 1874

Eating Maine Deer Tracks Ice Cream at Giffords - Butter Fatty Good!

ae 4ever!

Home, temporarily.




Two very kind friends.  And me.

Tasty.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Too pretty for words...

I'm in Maine.  I'll write more soon, but know for now, I am happy.

It is heart-breakingly beautiful here, and everyone is so very friendly.

I will have photos and color commentary soon.

For now, here's a fun fact:

There are sixteen counties in Maine.  I've been to five of them:

Cumberland
Kennebec
Penobscot
Somerset
Waldo

There are 95 counties in Tennessee.  I doubt I've been to a quarter of them.

ae


Sunday, August 5, 2012

You'll never know dear...

I just learned that an old friend of mine is getting divorced after less than a year with her husband.  I am heartbroken for her.

I would never had guessed that she was having trouble.   And that's kind of the thing.

You never know what other people are going through.  Never.

I'm grateful to have close friends here in Nashville and cities and towns everywhere who love me and have my back.

I'm grateful that my friend has the same.

But who knows what other people are up against.  Addiction, depression, debt, eating disorders, health scares, money problems, sick parents, struggling children, aging pets, anxiety, abuse, job woes, sexuality crises, loneliness, isolation...

You never know.

And I think that's the point.

Be kind to everyone, because we all have our daily struggles.

My struggles?  They're minor.  I'm fine.

But you never know.

ae

Friday, August 3, 2012

Pitching Fits and Tents

So, recently, they sent a ton of our execs to France for a boondoggle - it was a leadership session, where they took their spouses, had a mini-vacation, did some planning, did some drinking and eating and then came back and bragged about it.

We got an email from our Business Unit's VP, where he told us all about the beauty and splendor of it.  It was a real "let them eat cake" moment.

That was early yesterday morning.  Yesterday afternoon, our company kicked off iDay.  Innovation Day.

We have been preparing for this for awhile - taking problem solving classes, learning how to write compelling presentations.

But yesterday, the festivities started.  My colleague and friend Colby and I decided to team up and present on turning manager offices into meeting spaces. We both have a way with people and a sense of humor. 

We also decided we wanted to build a fort.  Why? To prove we lacked effective meeting spaces.  Why else?  Because we could.

We annoy and amuse almost daily.



It was a psych-out move of theatrics.  And people loved it.  We had a ball.

We gave the presentation this afternoon - it went over gangbusters.  Especially the slide where we suggested creating a French Bistro themed room.  We cited a quote from our VP's email speaking about the effectiveness of a good environment.

People howled.

Now, ours may not be the winning idea.  But I think we're a lock on the prize for "Best Presentation".

I'm happy.  Really, truly happy.

ae