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I'm happy, married, and looking forward to sharing my world with you! If you're interested, that is!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014


I've LEARNed that I will be doing the job of two people, and assisting a third.

While I'm flattered that my manager seems to think I'm capable of doing so much more work (he wants to utilize my talents and strengths), I'm not real keen about that "assisting a third" person.  It's clerical work.  And if he wants to pay me my salary to be a clerk, that's fine, but then make me a clerk.  Don't say I'm the team lead, a team specialist, that my responsibilities are expanding because of my capabilities...  Just say I'm a clerk making a boatload of money for being a clerk.

The woman whose work I'm picking up quit after working here for I know know how long, maybe 15 years?  This new job, in its current incarnation, wasn't "what [she] signed up for."  Yea, well, is it ever?  We went through a reorg, which by definition means we're all going to be doing more, for less.  We're going to have to LEARN more on our own. We've had to go through some official sales training (the only previous training I had was being a buyer, and once I became a sales person, I decided not to do what other sales people had done that annoyed me as a buyer).  We have videos we have to watch, webinars we have to participate in, training we have to do, additional data entry we're required to fit into our daily workflow...  All in the same 7 hours a day, 5 days a week. 

Which means my 35-hour work week is now a 45-50-hour work week, with no additional compensation because I am, of course, salaried.  I don't take a lunch; I eat at my desk.  I used to do personal email and pay bills and things when I got in the office at 7:30am but now I'm right to work.  I forget to stop working when it's the end of the day and I'm almost always late going outside to catch my ride.

One of the points the training made is that you have to LEARN when your most productive times are AND when your customers' most available times are.  And they suggested that in many cases between 7am and 8am or between 4pm and 6pm are the best times to reach people at their desks.

I see long hours ahead of me - I guess I AM psychic...

I've taken it upon myself to order a book that ties in with the sales training they provided.  I'm going to read it and then suggest, if it's applicable, that everyone read it, or read from it, or that perhaps the author would be a great speaker at our next conference...  I'm LEARNing how to play the game...

30 Days of Lists 6

Celebrity Crushes

There is only one:  Clint Eastwood.

My SIL gets upset when I say that if Clint called, I would leave my husband for him.

I would come back for sure, but I would definitely go.

Friday, February 21, 2014


This week's post is late because I have not yet LEARNed to be better with my time management...

This week's post is also about someone else's LEARNing experience...

All together now, let's welcome Mom to 2014 - she got an iPhone, thanks to Middle Sis!!!

It arrived on Wednesday, and while I'm as excited as can be for both of them and their new phones, the big LEARNing moment for me this week is (drumroll, please), I've discovered that I LEARN well and easily, but I don't TEACH others as well.

I am apparently incapable of breaking it down to the basics.

I keep forgetting that I have to teach her from step one, something as basic as how to double-click that home button.  I continually explain it as if she has basic smartphone knowledge, which she does not...  There's a good amount of basic skills that she has to LEARN and it's so innate to my use of the phone that I'm struggling to remember it's all new to her.

I'm so excited for her to be able to have access to it all - just FaceTime blew her away the other day!

I've had those conversations, the ones that flood the internet:  "Yes, nephew, Cioci had to go to the computer lab in college, put her name on a piece of paper on the door, to reserve 30 minutes on the computer."  "Yes, nephew, Cioci used a manual typewriter in high school - in fact, 1/2 the class did have electric typewriters but if you arrived on time, it was too late to get one of them and you were stuck with a manual one."  "Yes, nephew, both of your aunts remember the day we got our first word processor."  [Side comment:  Remember Crazy Eddie?  That's where Mom got it!]

I'm old enough to have been in that generation that LEARNed computers.  I didn't grow up with them.  I have a visual in my head - my 2-year-old nephew sitting on his grandfather's lap in Mr. U's office, playing with the computer, moving the mouse where Grandpa told him to, pressing the buttons as instructed...  And I remember being amazed that at 2, he was already so fluent with a computer!

I went over to Mom's again last night.  She was already being negative about having forgotten about closing out her apps so they don't run in the background.  I went over and over simple phone stuff - no internet, no games, only the briefest mention of texting (although she did text my sister to say hi!).  It's such an eye-opening experience - I find LEARNing new things on the computer fun and easy although I really never grew up with them.  I have to keep remembering that Mom LEARNing the iPhone is like me LEARNing to knit - I can do it, but it doesn't come easy.  It's just going to be a LEARN-as-you-go sort of thing for us both!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Blog Your Heart

image from http://aviary.blob.core.windows.net/k-mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp-14012813/e17fa2bd-57c8-4d99-8e66-b933aa7ce5c4.png
It's that time again, time for Stephanie Howell to post her Blog Your Heart post.  Here's how it works:
1. Blog whatever is authentic. Whatever is truly on your mind and in your heart.
2. It can be serious, silly, short, long. NOTE:No one said it has to be serious. But it should be authentic.
3. No judging allowed no snarky comments, no making fun, no passive agressive digs.If you are going to read the blogs linked below [on Stephanie's blog], don't be mean. Nothing here is whining, though I she can't help it if you perceive it that way. It's me honestly sharing my feelings. if you feel that it's whining, then you don't have to read. :)
4. If you BYH, link back here to Stephanie's post. I'll She'll add an Inlinkz tool at the end of the post. I She always reads and comments on every single post.
5. Feel free to use the graphic above. Just make sure to link back to me her.

Thanks to Stephanie for the instructions.  And here we go..
  1. My One Little Word this year is LEARN (you can look back to early January to see an explanation).  I'm happy and proud to say that while I'm not earning a doctorate, I think I AM LEARNing.  And I'm LEARNing lots.  And it's not all academic.  There is a lot of soul-searching going on, a lot of realizing, a lot of deciding, a lot of resolving...  It's not all happy - I've come to LEARN that I have a lot of flaws, many more than my innate Catholic guilt has laid on me all these years, and I've decided to practice some self-improvement.  Baby steps, yes, but improvement nonetheless.
  2. I am feeling swamped. Overwhelmed. Unable to do it all. Work is HARD, y'all.  I need someone to figure out how to double the hours in a day so I can get it all done.  (I have obviously NOT yet LEARNed that you CAN'T do it all...)
  3. I have 6 (ish) more PT sessions to go before I'm on my own.  Yes, I plan on continuing to go to the gym, and to walk at home, and to keep up with maintaining my knee's health, and BONUS:  the rest of me will be healthier, too!  We're going to Florida (Harry Potter World, here we come!) this summer and I have to be able to do some heavy duty walking.  We're starting the treadmill next Tuesday and unless this weather improves tremendously, I might have to become one of those old-lady-mall-walkers -- we gave our treadmill to M since we weren't using it...  Gotta keep on walkin'...
  4. I have a funny feeling we're going to be snowed in tonight.  Mr./Ms. I'm-a-Weatherman-So-I-Don't-Have-to-Be-Right-All-the-Time has said we're in for somewhere between 3-4 inches and 6-10 inches of snow tonight, into tomorrow, on TOP of the 8-10 inches already on the ground.  Of course, if you're north and/or west of the city, you could be getting up to 16 inches.  16.  Inches.  Global warming, my a$$.  (Do NOT respond with a political rant.) - [UPDATE:  Yes, we were snowed in.]
  5. The older I get the more impatient I get.  (This is NOT a surprise - I've been noticing this for years now.)  I find I have to bite back comments such as, "Really?" "No $hit!" and "You're kidding!" 
  6. I am getting more and more frustrated with the Zoning Board - they have almost $400 of my money in an escrow account and I can't get the secretary to call me back.  Now I realize they're the ones earning interest on my measly $392 but it's MY MONEY.  Now that we've done everything we have to do to get it released, she won't return my call.  Might be time for a visit to City Hall... [UPDATE:  I called and was rather harsh and less than friendly on the message - still no response.  So I called and asked for the Zoning Officer's office.  Guess what?  She has TWO desks and they put me right through to her!  And she emailed me the form and I mailed it today and hopefully we'll get our $392 sooner rather than later!]
  7. I'm so happy my sister and my mom are getting smart phones. I'm so excited to be able to share a bit more with them, a bit more easily...
  8. I'm confident that some day I'll be involved in a road rage incident, and I'll be the instigator!  I am SO frustrated with the crazy drivers who apparently think it doesn't matter that there is ice and snow on the ground and that the roads are 1/3 as wide as usual - it's still only them on the road!
  9. I have very strong opinions about things and as I get older, I care less and less about being discreet and find it more and more satisfying to just put myself out there.  I still don't feel the need to defend my opinions, but I certainly feel no qualms about stating them publicly when I feel strongly enough.
  10. I mentioned in a previous post that I'm learning/teaching myself to knit.  Yet another example of how frustrated I get when I can't learn something immediately, 100%.  I'm struggling with knitting and purling.  It's just not feeling natural in my hands yet...  Grrrr...

30 Days of Lists 5

Vacations to Take

  1. Alaska - my dream vacation
  2. Paris - I HAVE to see Versailles and the Louvre
  3. Australia - I've always wanted to go there
  4. London - Stratford-on-Avon, Stonehenge, Buckingham Palace, St. Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, etc.
  5. Cape Cod - to see our friends (I KNOW we've promised this before, but it's HIS fault, not mine!)
  6. Chicago - for something other than a work conference
  7. New Orleans - ditto
  8. Florida - I could go every year, to Disney World, Universal (Hello, Harry Potter!), Sea World, etc.
  9. Utah
  10. Colorado
  11. Tennessee - Nashville, specifically, but elsewhere as well
  12. Oklahoma
  13. Alabama
  14. North Carolina
  15. Georgia - Savannah, specifically, but Atlanta as well (was there on business only - took the CNN tour and saw the Coke Museum)
  16. Cross country on the motorcycle - unlikely at our age, but would love to do it.  Perhaps we can change it to "cross country by car"

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

30 Days of Lists 4

On My Shopping List(s)

Shop Rite:
  • Milk
  • Orange juice
  • Hot dogs and hot dog rolls
  • Ham steaks
  • Shredded cheese
  • Bisquick - IF the box in my pantry is too old and stale...
  • Water mixes (not mango/peach)

Miscellaneous Stores:
  • Curtain rods and panels for the sliding doors and windows in the lake house living room
  • Dr. Scholl's Peppermint Foot Lotion (can't find it anywhere!)
  • Work clothes
  • Work shoes (black flats)
  • Mattress pillow top
  • Some kind of birthday gift for hubby (April - it takes a long time to think of something he might actually want/use)

Optical Center:
  • New glasses (due in March/April)

Barnes & Noble OR amazon.com:
  • Linger, Maggie Stiefvater
  • Forever, Maggie Stiefvater
  • Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, Robin Sloan
  • Eat That Frog!  Brian Tracy
  • Oath of Office, Michael Palmer
  • Death Benefit, Robin Cook
  • Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend, Matthew Dicks
  • The Last Letter from Your Lover, Jojo Moyes
  • Crazy Salad, Nora Ephron
  • Monarch Beach, Anita Hughes
  • Every Day, David Levathin
  • The Drop, Michael Connelly
  • Art Doodle Love, Dawn DeVries Sokol


This will be a very light post, more humorous than serious, but with underlying truth...

This week I LEARNed that...
  1. I don't mind cooking all day Sunday to have food in the fridge for the week (this week's menu includes fried eggplant and homemade chicken soup)
  2. it matters to me that I have a HUGE stack of books sitting by my side that I have accumulated, but not read
  3. I can forget how to knit as quickly as I LEARNed how to knit
  4. I can LEARN to loosen my stitches up a bit, almost a bit too much
  5. while I still LOVE, LOVE, LOVE snow, I'm a bit underwhelmed at the idea of another 6-10 inches on top of the ice and snow we have out there right now
  6. I enjoy planning and really wish I enjoyed the follow-through as much
  7. as I get older, I like being cold less and less
  8. I still love the oldies but goodies, songs from the 50s
  9. I'm a visual LEARNer
  10. I should be independently wealthy, or at least not have to work for a living
And those are just 10 things I LEARNed this week!  Stay tuned - we have 45 more weeks to go!!!

Friday, February 07, 2014


This LEARNing post is up late this week; I've been out of the office almost all week.  Monday was a snow day and school was closed so I worked from home.  I did come into the office on Tuesday, but prepped for sales conference, which ran from Wednesday through Friday.  It's Friday afternoon and I'm waiting in the office for J to pick me up...

I didn't LEARN too much, at least not all that much that's measurable, from last week's post, but at sales conference, it was a LEARNing par-tay!

This sales conference was totally and completely sans product.  We LEARNed sales.  We LEARNed sales methodology.  We went through official sales training from outsides sales experts.  We role-played on Thursday.

I must say I expected to h-a-t-e it all, from day 1 to day 3, but it pains me to admit that not only did I have f-u-n, I LEARNed a few things!  I was afraid, along with many others, I'm sure, that it would be a free-for-all on the part of W to basically tell us how little we know about selling, how unprofessional and untrained I/we was/were.

But, in fact, administration admitted we hadn't been trained, admitted this was a serious lack on their part, and promised to continue training with other seminars and webinars, etc., throughout the rest of our career with W.

I LEARNed that I should lead with benefits, not with features. I LEARNed that other successful sales reps had as little training as I have, and yet they took it on themselves more than I did to LEARN to sell, to LEARN their customers, to LEARN the product, to LEARN to do a great job.  I am resolving to do better, do more, LEARN more...  Be more...