office expressions.

musings from my experience at the home/office.

Monday, November 26, 2012

10 years

Aside from Thanksgiving and getting the house ready for Christmas, a significant event happened this past 10 year high school reunion. During this event on Saturday night, I was a very comfortable 1,700+ miles away...although Facebook still kept me uncomfortable and curiously close to the event.

I dated my best friend from about 9th grade through 11th grade, then I dumped him the summer before senior year because I didn't want to go off to college in a serious relationship. Ever the planner, I gave myself the entire senior year to get over him.

Which, in turn, resulted in me checking out of everything at school except the 5 studio art classes I had carefully planned into my schedule, and a handful of good friendships. Although, those friendships were often more isolating than healthy, as my friends still wanted to do normal high school things like go to parties, prom, and the sr. class trip...which I had absolutely no interest in. It was a pretty lonely year, pining for my future to begin in St. Paul, MN as a freshman at Bethel.

I had given up field hockey, slowly started to gain a little weight, and rushed home every day to sleep a few hours before dinner. Looking back, I'm pretty sure I was mildly depressed. Graduation day was the happiest/saddest of days, as I finally felt released into my future but lamented the loss of people who had 'known' me since I was in kindergarten. That community of close to 1,000 people would never be together again, and there's something kind of sad about that.

Fast forward 10 years= 4 incredibly awesome years of college, life-long friends, world travel, marrying my best friend, two crappy jobs that led to one incredible job and life in CO, and don't forget the dog and our sweet babe! Sitting in my home.werking.chair this morning next to the Christmas tree, still in my PJ's, I have a lot I am so happy about and incredibly thankful for.

But it's the vain things like the weight I have gained since high school, wondering if anyone would want to talk to the intense girl they remember from senior year, and the fact that I have literally stayed in contact with 2...maybe 3 people since graduating...that makes 1,700 miles of distance kind of a weird thing. I honestly doubt I will ever make it to a high school reunion, I always rejected the pressure of having to prove myself in high school, and I'm pretty sure that's how I'd feel at a class of 2002 reunion...mixed with spanx shapewear, nervously applied makeup, and adult beverages.

There are some people it would be fun to reconnect with, but I'm thinking high school reunions, much like prom, are not my scene. College reunions, on the other hand, couldn't come soon enough!

Give me a few hours in the end zone at Bethel's homecoming game, and I'm pretty sure I'd lose my voice from chatting with everyone. And if that's how some people feel about high school all means, enjoy it for me! :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


As the holiday season descends upon our house, I want to take time to reflect on this past year and the many 'gifts' we have been given...
-The healthy pregnancy, delivery, and new life of our sweet girl. Words often used to describe her are 'bright eyed', 'happy', and 'content'. What more could a mother ask for? I am filled with such true joy when I realize that her happiness is contagious. I have had so many strangers come up to me in a park or at a store and tell me that her smile 'made their day'. What a blessing to be around someone who has the ability to brighten someone's day with a look or a smile...that's my girl!
-My werk remain employed with a part-time-werk-from-home arrangement is something I never would have dreamed possible a few years ago. I am so grateful for my employer and their desire to keep me on board while I step back a little to care for our family. I try not to take a single day of this opportunity for granted.
-My husband...a sensitive and adventurous friend, a silly and nurturing dad, a hardworking and diligent nurse. He cares for our family with such depth, intention, and love...I feel so fortunate to be sharing life with him.
-Our physical and financial health. These are two areas which make our day to day life less stressful and give us the ability to focus on other things. When I hear of some of Jake's patients and what they are going through, it helps me stop and remember how grateful I am for the physical health of my family. The fact that Jake and I are able to werk in jobs that have purpose, but also provide well is a rare blessing in this difficult economy.
-Last but not least...Lexi! she has transitioned into life as a 'big sister' pretty well, and is learning how to share our affections a little better every day. She turned 4 last week, and it's so hard to remember life before we had her...her antics, unconditional love, and aggressive snuggles are daily gifts to our family.

Well...the babe is sleeping so I better keep decorating...I've been sneaking in Christmas decorations here and there while she naps this week!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Christmas Preview

I am working on our family Christmas card, and while they said our photo was too low res for great printing, I went ahead and ordered 1 as a sample before spending more money on a complete order...Here's a sneak peak:

Stationery card
View the entire collection of cards.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Remote Office

There are many words you can use to describe my werk situation, some are 'HR' terms and others are just easier to use when talking to family or friends: remote office, regional employee, home office, telecommuter, werk from home.

I have a lot of flexibility in deciding where, when, and how I get my werk accomplished. Because of my regional employee status, I am trusted to use my best judgement. Well, combine Jake's elk hunt yesterday, with our sweet babe and no time to find a sitter, and a meeting from 9-10:30am...and what do you have?

A nervous home.werker pushing a stroller down the Cherry Creek Trail for an hour and a half praying for the following:
-a VERY sleepy baby who doesn't make a peep from 9-10:30.
-a VERY quiet trail with no barking dogs, loud traffic, or rushing rivers.
-a VERY clear memory of the web designs we were discussing with IT folks since I had no computer in front of me.

Aside from a little sunburn and some tired feet, I think most of my prayers were answered. I'm still not sure how much background noise from the trail made it through the phone line, but no one commented on anything so it must have been bearable.

Werking from behind my jogging stroller while on a conference call is not an ideal situation, but in a pinch yesterday, it werked well and baby slept the entire time. I'm pretty sure I would call that divine intervention...unfortunately, Jake wasn't quite as successful on the elk hunt. Maybe next year!
My 'mobile' office!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Happy Hunting

Well....the hubby is off an an elk hunting excursion today! I'm excited that he gets to go this year, last year was just way too busy with school for him to get away. There are a lot of ways that being married to Jake has completely changed me or my perspective on things, and I honestly have to say, hunting is one of them.

I didn't know any hunters growing up, guns were a concept related to gangsters in the city, and I purchased my meat (if I ate any) at the store. I couldn't even tell you where to purchase camo or blaze orange ANYTHING...

Fast forward 10 years, and I'm sitting on my couch wondering and hoping for a reason to clean out my freezer so I can make room for those lovely little packages of elk meat. All of that lean, hormone and anti-biotic free red meat...last time Jake got an elk we didn't buy red meat for a year and a half!

I am an animal lover and I did cry the first time I heard Jake shot an elk. But I also know that he is a good shot, it was a clean kill, and the majority of the animal was processed into meat to feed our family. It wasn't a cruel or senseless act, but one that served a purpose. At least I think I believe that, but I know I couldn't be around an witness the actual 'hunt', and I will still probably cry if he is able to shoot one of those big beautiful animals for us.

I guess I'm torn...because nothing tastes better than an elk burger on the grill or some elk chili in the winter! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day

I have voted in the past three presidential elections. I have survived the nasty campaigns during the past two elections...but this time, I am feeling extremely harassed.

Every day for the past two or three weeks, we have gotten a minimum of 5 disgusting postcards embedded with fear tactics, slander, and hopelessness. I could literally wallpaper my bathroom with the amount of advertisements we have received in the mail. The funny thing is, I am a registered Independent this time around, because I was so offended by the way the RNC treated me during the last election I couldn't handle being affiliated with them or any other political party. I thought that by choosing to be an independent voter the RNC would leave me alone...but they are chasing me down everywhere I turn!

The next awful tactic is the endless robo-calls from the extreme right to my land-line. Yes, I have a land-line for my home office and that's really the only purpose it serves. However, we have deleted at least 40 messages from these robo-callers off of our machine in that past few weeks. It's always from some random girl named Chloe, spewing some form of audio junk into the atmosphere of our cozy little home right around dinner time. I really don't want to even hear about Romney, Planned Parenthood, or Obamacare while I'm eating dinner with my family, thank you, robo-Chloe.

I have signed off of Facebook for the day, because people in my newsfeed are one of two things on there today:
a) excited that they 'voted' (cool, I really am glad you did).
b) extremely ugly and rude, hostile and ridiculously opinionated in a way that is neither productive nor effective in winning someone over to your point of view. It's hurtful, and in my opinion, it's just not the right platform for these discussions.

I have a wide variety of friends in my life who fall all over the political spectrum on many issues, and I really do respect those of my friends who can communicate their point of view in a sensitive and intelligent manner...but I am so weary of this campaign and all of the negativity that has accompanied it. It's just time for it to be over so we can all move on and stop being so offensive to each other.

So, as a registered independent living in a swing state who participated in early voting...bring on the Christmas ADS!