office expressions.

musings from my experience at the home/office.

Friday, December 16, 2011


Because I werk from home and don't have to run from the first floor south tower to the fourth floor north tower in between meetings (squeezing in a bathroom break if I'm lucky)...I am VERY on time for meetings. Which is something a lot of people strive for,  but two times in the last day I have been waiting on conference line, for a least ten minutes, before hanging up. I literally cannot stand the 'hold music' our conference line uses, and ten minutes of that would probably drive anyone crazy.

I just wonder:
1-Are people forgetting that I am waiting on the line, because everyone else is in the room?
2-Are people starting meetings and dialing in to their end of the conference line once everyone is in the room? If that's the case, should I start dialing in 5-10 minutes late to avoid that horrible music?
3-Why can't I just sit on the line in silence? Who ever said I wanted to listen to music anyway?

I am slightly annoyed, and wondering how to discuss this with my co.werkers in the office. Lately, if I'm the only one dialing into a meeting, I have been asking the meeting organizer to just call my office line directly whenever they are ready to actually start the meeting. That has helped immensely, but obviously not completely since there are often others joining via conference line.

On another note...what makes a webinar a webinar? I sat in on a webinar yesterday, and there were literally two slides shown on the screen the entire time, an intro slide and a closing slide with more details about the webinar. Why not just have it be a conference call or podcast, if no one is interacting with the chat feature or slides?

Getting my annoyances out of the way for the week, as I look into a light week of werk and celebrating the holidays with family in the coming days!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Christmas is Coming

I know that Christmas is coming, aside from the commercials, decorations, and extra holiday parties...I know it is coming because my werk has that Christmas break 'buzz' around it. Mantra: Get it done now, or wait til the New Year.

So, in this week before the week before Christmas, we cram a lot of werk into 5 days and hope it sticks until 2012. After all, who wants to get LOTS done when no one else is in the office? It's not super motivating when you know your emails won't get answered, you meetings won't be attended, and in general, people are just passing time and glad that the company lightened the dress code to 'casual' for a few extra days around the holiday.

From my experience in, next week is a GREAT time to:
  • clean up your desk (start 2012 with a clean werk space!)
  • chat with co.werkers who are also stuck in the office, see what they're up to. 
  • polish off those vendor treats that have been accumulating on your assistant's desk. 
  • clean out your email account...seriously, if you haven't touched it in 4-5 weeks, are you ever going to?
  • come in a little late and leave a little early. make up for all of those 10-12 hour days you put in through out the year.
Oh, and one more way I know Christmas is calendar says it's December 14. :)
Add to the decorations in your cube by making this your screen saver for the next week!

Monday, December 12, 2011

baby baby

Jake and I headed to the hospital this morning for one of the best Mondays yet. We got to meet our baby on the ultrasound, and so far, everything is going great! We have lots to be thankful for with this pregnancy, healthy baby, healthy mom, supportive dad, medical insurance, a great hospital close to our house...the list goes on. It was quite a fun chunk of time to spend imagining all that will happen between now and May when we get to meet each other face to face.

Thankfully, I had some meetings scheduled for this afternoon, otherwise I fear the day might have been completely shot by me watching the DVD of the ultrasound over and over and over again. I can't wait to count all the little fingers and toes, know if baby's a a boy or a girl (we're waiting!), and get to stare into that sweet little face.

In the mean time, Happy Monday!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Shut the door!

I talk loud on the phone, mostly when the people on the other end are I feel like I need to speak up so that they can hear me. Not sure how logical that is, but it makes sense to me sometimes.

Unfortunately, when Jake is home studying during the day, he often shuts my office door, and his office door, because for some reason he doesn't want to hear my loud mouth yapping during my meetings. Go figure! :)

I'm thankful I've GOT an office door to close, and a husband who is brave enough to close it when I forget. I just hope I'm not too loud on the other end of the phone...but they've got volume buttons to adjust for that, right?
Some cheesy 'shut the door' humor for you. Hehe.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


a constant struggle and debate that i have with myself is to remember that i bring all of who i am into all that i do. while i have a professional life, a personal life, a spiritual life, a family life, etc...all of these things impact and play off of one another constantly, no matter how hard I strive to keep them in their neat little compartments. I am who I am who I matter the circumstance. My thoughts and beliefs about art, God, politics, love, and everything else, come with me into every situation, regardless of whether I'm in a business meeting or in a worship service...or just walking the dog.

I fight with myself on this, because sometimes it seems so much easier to have neat little compartments for everything. Between the hours of 8-5, I am the.home.werker, all other hours, I can be everything else I am. However, werking for a christian non-profit often reminds me that I bring my spiritual life to werk (good or bad!), my family life, and pretty much everything else. It's not always good to share everything of 'who I am' with everyone, I know that...boundaries are great. But to allow the inspirational parts of my day to to impact not just werk, but everything else I do, is a great privilege.

Yesterday, I listened to a chapel message from our President about a new book he's releasing, and it's a book about life changing moments. Whether good or bad, most of us have a moment in our lives that changed everything for us. The question he posed to us was, what can we do to create good moments in the lives of others? To change the trajectory of someone else's life? I was inspired. And I am thankful that werk isn't just tasks, a lot of times, it includes inspiration along with the perspiration!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Calorie Counter

You know how it goes, the holidays roll around and usually leading the way with them are all of the sweet treats you could ever want (starting with the halloween candy!). Right at your finger tips. Right as you are about the explode from the stress of getting all of your werk done before the holidays. And, BAM! You've gotten a gift of 5 more pounds to carry around as you swagger around

Oh, this doesn't happen to you? Those chocolate covered treats, homemade caramels, and random assortment of christmas cookies never call your name in the middle of a particularly stressful meeting? Then you get to stop reading. :)

For the rest of us, we all have different nicknames for it in our respective offices. For me, at my last job, it was the calorie counter. The waist high counter which served as a half-wall for our naturally slender assistant's cubicle. All of the sugar, butter, and goodness usually landed on her desk, and slowly migrated to mine...and by mine, I mean my behind. Of course, the years I had given up sugar were just glorious, the calorie counter held no sway over me and I continued on past those delicious seasonal treats, imagining they were rat poison.

As I gradually got back on the sugar wagon, I realized how often the opportunity to indulge in mindless treats at presented itself. Whether it's having punch at a baby shower, cake from a birthday left in the breakroom, or vendor gifts that suddenly appear in the form of caramel corn and was everywhere.

Now that I am in my second trimester of pregnancy and absolutely ravenous most of the time, I sometimes wish I had a calorie counter to swing by, you know, to get in the Christmas spirit? ;) I am honestly and rationally very thankful I don't have that temptation in front of me this year as my baby bump continues to grow, we don't need the rest of me to balloon up as well!My life as the.home.werker has hopefully removed some mindless-werkplace-snacking-temptations from my life. :)

Now I just have to work on keeping healthy snacks in the home office, but the occasional batch of Christmas cookies a week or two before Christmas couldn't hurt too's all about self control, right? In that case, chocolate covered peanut butter balls might be in my near future...I'm not sure I can wait until our time in Minnesota before enjoying one of my favorite Christmas cookies!
That's what I'm talkin' about!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Wrap it Up

It's Friday afternoon, and pay day Friday at that! Back in my time at, I usually would grab a girlfriend or two and head down the road for a nice lunch. No leftovers for me on pay day Friday! Heck, I might even order more than just ice water with my meal. Splurge.

Now, in the land of the.home.werker, it's Friday at 12:30, I'm ravenous, and I've got a fridge of leftovers to forage through like a hungry bear.

I'd rather be at Panera, Biaggi's or P.F. Chang's if I'm really honest. I love cooking, but sometimes I really miss living at home where my mom cooked for us all of the time. I never had to worry about getting groceries, meal planning, or what was for dinner, ever. And now that we try to do most of our own cooking and rarely go out to eat, I thoroughly enjoy any meal that I did NOT have to hunt, gather, or cook for myself. Even if it costs a little extra in a restaurant, or means I am on clean up duty...that's ok. Every once in a while, it's just a treat.

Now, to feed the hungry bear...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Jesus and Birthday Cake

You know you werk at a christian organization when... the departmental email for folks with birthdays in December includes Jesus on December 25th. Funny, it didn't say what department he werked in.
You know you're a pastor's kid when...every Christmas you have a red velvet cake, light candles, and sing Happy Birthday to Jesus. We could definitely have an office birthday party for Jesus and eat this cake...if only his birthday wasn't a corporate holiday!