Thursday, May 31, 2012


Funny thing turns out to be, when you start blogging for money, you stop blogging for yourself.

I've spent most of the last year blogging about Recruiting, Public Relations, Bed Bugs, Asbestos, Indoor Air Quality and Lead Poisoning and not at all about knitting!  Who would have thunk it!?

Nor about spirituality (much--every once in a while it creeps into job search but not often), but that is a post in itself.  I will have to sit down and write it.

I'm extremely proud and happy to be paid to be a writer these days, but do find that I have nowhere to write anything personal.  Ahem.

Kids have successfully moved on in school, scouts (Boy), winning awards (Girl) and I am happy to announce that it is--


For them, anyway.  I am trying to wrangle the days so that I can stop working at 4 or so and maybe not work on Sundays every single week.  Give me a couple of weeks. Oh, yeah.  Or a couple more 'cause next week I teach at Vacation Bible School in the mornings and work 1-8.  Yikes!

This is my 9th year, 2 as an actual staff member and last year in a greatly reduced capacity, but I AM BACK, BABY!

The only real difficulty being my struggle these days with the whole idea of "God."  Yeah, well.  I love the kids, I love the games, I love the process, they'll do it all without me if I don't go and if my subconscious is yelling at me about it, I'll tell it to shut up.

A few years ago, the director (now gone) and the Pastor (also now gone) were watching the kids eat snack and the director turned to the Pastor and said, "We are brainwashing them."

So my subconscious isn't the only one.

Knitting wise, it was a big year for baby knits--not for me, though!!  The twins (that's another story, too, probably for spirituality day) and my lovely boss and my sister-in-law and now there are more coming as my nephew's lovely girl is due in September.  Good thing I memorized that pattern!

I'm trying to get through a Chickami before the end of the summer--why do summer knits take FOREVER? The two cotton tops I did last year were like 3 years old by then!  Almost to the straps on this one, though.  A week at the pool and I'll be wearing it. Unless it's too big.

Oh, man, I've got a weight loss post to do, too!

Anyway, if you're reading this, you are stoic and have waited a long time.  I'll make Thursday Personal Blog Day, how about that, and then maybe I'll get here before next year.


Saturday, December 31, 2011

So long, 2011! Welcome, 2012!

2011 has been a super eventful year!

I started out newly jobless and decided to take a chance on a career development training program that changed my outlook and my work life completely. I met some amazing new forever-friends and figured out what I want to do going forward. Those are gifts enough. But, wait, there's more!

With the support and encouragement of many, not least my lovely family, I landed a part-time role in Public Relations, an entirely new field for me, but which really started me off well in April.

In early August, I came across a (paid) internship in Recruiting and it turned out to be a great gig with great people. Not so much an internship after all, but I've learned so much, it definitely counts as an educational experience as well as a job! Extra nice, I get to write about the topics we covered in my training program and get some of that information out to a broader audience and, I hope, help some more people land great jobs!

In late August, a friend put me in touch with her employer because she needed someone to take over for her in the blogging/social media side of his business as she had landed a full-time job. Going to a business meeting feeling like a "vendor" was a new experience, much less nerve-wracking than a "job interview" and finally put me in the black.

For the last three months of 2011, I've worked 45 hour weeks, mostly at home, and have enjoyed myself tremendously being a writer and Social Media Consultant. Thanks to the openness and generosity of my managers and colleagues, I have learned a tremendous amount and will continue to do so in 2012.

It turns out the most important thing I learned working at the church was to be fearless. I spent a lot of time writing and thinking about what fear does to our thought processes and our decision making in those two years and, by the end, when I had to make a snap decision and take a very risky path, I did it without fear and with joy and gratitude.

I am indeed grateful for all I have learned, for the support and friendship of my colleagues, teachers and friends, for the gifts of love from the 'verse and for the opportunities I have received to grow and be happy.

I wish you peace.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Working Like a Fiend!

And enjoying (almost) every minute of it!

It would be every minute, but the last two nights, my brain was going around so fast I couldn't sleep, which is very strange and has led to exhaustion today.

Writing, writing, writing. Writing about compression stockings, about air quality, about lead regulations, about translation, about bed bugs, about fall, about choir, about whatever I think of, writing, writing, writing.

It's lovely!

Of course, I'm so done with writing by the end of the day that I don't write over here, but I will try not to do that for too long.

I'm going to go dish up the chili I made at lunchtime, but would like to take this opportunity to thank the LA Fellows, all of my colleagues and instructors there, my friends and family, my former employers, my current employers and my incredible church family for helping me get to this place. We cannot see the path until it's past. You have all helped me stay on it, even when I didn't know what it was.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Not for a year, but ever and a day...

Okay, not for six months, though. For an entire year. Since access existed. Unbelievable.



Tuesday, June 21, 2011

This is weird.

I've lost my best friend. Only she really wasn't, she was just pretending.

So I guess I didn't really lose anything.

That makes me feel better, actually.


Sunday, June 19, 2011


Wow, that sounds dramatic!

Of course, it is.

Did you ever...well, yeah, haven't we all.

Why am I shocked, shocked to find someone who is absolutely capable of deception and manipulation finally deceiving and (attempting at any rate) manipulating me?

I should have known.

I find myself wondering if a "lack of judgment" in the sense of not judging others is really a "lack of judgment" in the sense of having none.

Why would anyone who has betrayed me expect respect, expect the relationship to continue, expect trust?

What can she expect from me? Prayers, yes. Even yesterday, even today, even tomorrow. Forgiveness, yes. Maybe even already. Good wishes for peace and reconciliation with her friends and family, yes. Health and happiness for her and her children, always.

What not to expect? Me to ever believe a word again. Ever to let her near my kids. Ever to engage with her, ever, ever, ever.

And yet, even today, even knowing all that I know and why and how and to whom, she tries to make me feel guilty, to see her as the victim, to tell me I am the inadequate friend. Again.

Of course, I have been the inadequate friend before and we almost fell out then as well. During a crisis of mine, she confronted me about how badly I was treating her. What she did not realize was that I had already withdrawn from her because of doing this to me before. I had already put her in a box called "low expectations." I let her out of it again, mostly. It was never the same, but I reached out, I tried to forget the two years of wondering what she was calling for since it was always for something or other. And that's the kind of relationship you have with some people. They need and you help. They ask and you give. You even try to anticipate and you give. But you never expect. I never expected after the first time.

But even today she expects and expects and expects from me. For me to say, oh, well, it's all right, I love you, I will rescue you again, I will help you again, I will give what little I have to save you again.

Unfortunately, this time she put me in danger, put my children in danger, put my life in danger and that is simply too much to expect.

I love you, my friend. I wish nothing but good for you. You need help that I cannot give you. I pray that you find it, that you find reality and maturity and health. That someday you really feel sorry for your transgressions against the people who have trusted you. I know you're sorry you got caught and I know you're angry that people are upset with you. I know you're ashamed and embarrassed that anyone knows what you have done. I also know that you are still asking people to keep it a secret, to minimize the consequences of your actions. To somehow escape unscathed.

I suppose you might in some ways. But there is one thing you will never regain: me.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

LA Fellows Graduation Speech

My colleagues at the LA Fellows elected me (along with Fellow Jay Bernard) to speak at our Graduation Ceremony on March 11, 2011.

Here is the text of my speech:

Thank you to the Job Training staff, the Faculty and Administration of LA Valley College, Program Partners, our guests and representatives from our nonprofits for being here with us today.

I feel like I’ve been writing this speech for seven weeks. And I guess I have. On Facebook, on Twitter, on LinkedIn, on the LA Fellows Blog and my own and in my journal, I have tried throughout to think about what has really been going on and what the impact of the LA Fellows program has been on far. I say “so far” because the journey isn’t finished yet. And even when we all have fabulous new jobs, the journey will continue.

We all came into the LA Fellows missing something. What, you ask? A job, I would have said. That’s what’s missing in my life. But what were we really missing? A lot...and then again not so much.

So I will say thank you to our instructors both for showing us what we brought with us and for what they gave us that we needed.

We came here with our spirits. Thank you to Jim Marteney for showing us that the spirits we have and bring to our work are important and valuable and then how to tap into those spirits and put them to good use.

We came here with our brains and our bodies. Thank you to Larry Braman, a special reconnection for me from long ago and far away, for showing us the skills and energy we have and bring to our work are amazing resources for ourselves and our employers. And for showing us that any way we connect with one another and the world is significant.

We came here with dreams. Thank you to Dr. Virginia Green who taught us to only accept the best from ourselves, from our team, from our lives, from our time. Some of us didn’t know what our dreams were, some of us even found that our dreams were different from what we thought. Wherever we are in our journey today, all of us have gained clarity and if we don’t yet know what we want, we do know what we need.

We came here with an idea of what job search was. Thank you to Tony Jaramillo for giving us concrete skills to deal with what we have to go through to reach our goals.

We came here thinking we knew about group dynamics and communications. Thank you to Michael Tompkins for reminding us that listening can always be improved and that openness to others is a huge asset in any situation. And thank you for being there for us after the program ends.

We came here feeling powerless. Great thanks to Roberto Guitierrez for giving us a safe place to find the power within us and proclaim it to the world.

And for the things we needed:

Thank you Doug Card for getting us up to speed on the computers with such good nature, humor and patience.

Thank you to Andrea Mitchel, who made “nonprofit” into a reality for us, a place where we can learn and grow and thrive. And for giving us a whole new skillset that will serve us well as we move on.

And to Lynette Ward, thank you for giving us so many things we really did not have at all through her immense knowledge and generosity: what to do, what to use, what to bring, what to say, what to ask, and what to do when we land.

And Allison, our bright shiny penny, our touchstone, our confidante, our mentor. I cannot imagine anyone doing this better than you do, working harder, being kinder.

But, sorry everyone, my biggest thank you has to be to my colleagues. Thank you for connecting with one another, for supporting one another, for becoming a family, for crisis counseling and for laughter. I don’t think any of us knew we were missing each other, but we were and now we’re not. And thank goodness, we never will be.

I will finish with an Irish blessing:

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
Until we meet again.

Thank you.

Great thanks to all of my friends at LA Fellows Cohort 2 for trusting me to speak. I am humbled by your confidence.


I have a dream (yes, I do)!

I have a dream. That dream is to take my hyper-local journalism and webmaster experience and turn it into a career.

And so I present to you my new daily feature:

If I Were the Editor of the Burbank Patch!

The Burbank Patch doesn't exist yet...but when it does, watch out!

On this beautiful Saturday in Burbank, California, I would remind parents that there is a Bird Walk tomorrow morning in Wildwood Canyon, as there is every Second Sunday of the month. It's the perfect time of year to hike up there, as it's not too hot and the plants are in their spring burgeoning time. Great day to take some pictures!

It's also a wonderful day to go to the Burbank Farmer's Market, where each week I would feature a different vendor and try their wares: good blog-fodder and also lovely photos.

[I wish I had time to do this NOW!]

Okay, get this one: Professional Cars International is going to attempt to break the World Record (Guiness Book and all) for the WORLD'S LONGEST HEARSE PARADE starting at the top of the parking structure at the Burbank Holiday Inn at 9am! I can hardly stand not to be there!

Photo via FlickrCreativeCommons by Mr Littlehand

The Burbank Animal Shelter is having a Pet Adoption day today at 11am. I could easily go over and take heart wrenching pictures of the kittens and puppies! Come on, dogs is wonderful!

Photo via FlickrCreativeCommons by Kiwi NZ

Sounds like I would have a busy--and FUN!--day ahead...

...If I Were the Editor of the Burbank Patch!

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