painting generations past

1 08 2012

painting generations past

my new painting focus is based on the idea of preserving a family member’s memory in portraiture- and especially rejuvenating ancestors long gone through portrait painting!


Today the worst thing to be is green.

6 12 2011

I am not a capitalist.
I am not a businessperson.
I am not the up-and-coming whiz kid who will remodel and revamp your financial infrastructure to increase profits.

I am green. (Not that kind of green!)
I have had only one person tell me, out of many interviews, that the experience listed on my resume was good. One.

I went to a four-year college, finished my degree, and took a job right after graduation that was more of an adjustment in my career outlook than I anticipated. Then, about a year later, I changed gears completely, and took another job that was a total adjustment.

After I graduated, these two full-time jobs have been a great learning experience, but I made one huge mistake. I let my job become a defining factor of my self-worth.
Dr. Melanie Greenberg, clinical psychologist, wrote an article I read today. In the opening, she makes it clear that our culture puts heavy emphasis on wealth and work role as a means to define the value of a person. We are so status heavy, that I didn’t even realize why I was feeling so unfulfilled and low in these entry-level, basically dead-end jobs. Had the idea ever occurred to me that I can evaluate my own self-worth, and not allow my job, my career to define me? I don’t think so. In fact, I’ve grown up with that mindset all along, and to do otherwise would require months, maybe even years, of conscious effort.


The reason I read the article at all is because I have recently relocated and have begun to look for a job in the collegiate or university setting. This is where I felt most accomplished, it only stands to reason that if I should become employed there, I would get the same satisfaction again. But there’s the task of “breaking in” and getting the proverbial “foot in the door”.

To those institutions, I’m nobody. I don’t have a Master’s Degree, I have little applicable experience, and I’m probably more suited to something else entirely. I have spoken with several personnel of these institutions, even at the community college level, and it’s hard to be taken seriously if you haven’t acquired a Master’s Degree. I’m not saying for a full-time faculty position (that’s obvious) I mean for jobs in admissions, assistant clerical positions, things like that to get yourself a good start, feel the place out.
But, so far, I’ve met with a lot of rejection.
If you’re like me, this is probably one of the hardest things to hear. You’re just not qualified, you don’t have the experience. You are not enough.

Okay, I’m green. I got it. I don’t have business experience so I don’t know all the protocols, the niceities, the do’s and the don’ts. I don’t know the strategies or the agendas. I’m not a wizard at networking and self-promotion. I don’t have a Master’s Degree.
Not to say that I don’t want one, I do,  but I don’t want to pursue something that I’m not 100% sure about, and this is one thing I’ve never been 100% sure about. What is going to make me want to jump out of bed in the morning? What is going to fulfill my curiosity and challenge my intelligence in a healthy way? What can I do or provide that other people will want or think is worthwhile in which to invest their time or money? How do I find out?

In the meantime, I don’t know what to do with myself. I have to admit, it’s causing me to look at myself differently, and my self-esteem has taken a few blows in the face. Anytime that happens, it’s difficult to reach out to others, get into a new group of people, and take the risk that they might see you the way you are seeing yourself. Even if you know that somewhere over the rainbow there is a better you, right now you don’t feel so good about you, so what on earth will make someone else feel differently?

This is a challenge. It is happening for a reason. It’s like someone handing you lemons, so what do you do? “Let’s see if she can figure out how to make lemonade, or if she just goes sour.”

Another important strategy for me is not to get overwhelmed by the possibilities that are open while I’m searching.
For example, I like photography. I just got Lightroom for a nice Black Friday price. If I really thought about it and planned it right, I could pursue that. Wedding photos, senior photos. It would take a lot to invest, I’m sure. Lenses alone are very expensive. But that is still a possibility.
Or what of the possibility of going back to school? That’s an entire can of worms with a multitude of forks in the road.

I have no answers right now, but I know that there are lots of other people who have felt the same way, or are feeling this way right now. I’m not alone, although it feels like it. If I would say that I’m alone, it would be selfishness, and that really is not the way to deal with the lemons. If anything, I can at least say I’m smart enough to know that being selfish will make things worse. So it’s one step at a time for me. Other people believe in me, almost to the point where it’s putting external pressure on. But, I can just take that with a grain of salt for now.

So, this is the word of the day. Here a reader will either be in agreement, passively open-minded, or completely turned off. That’s okay, I’m not shoving anything down anyone’s throat.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have driven you, declares the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I sent you into exile.

What’s the best way to cure a cold?

4 12 2011

a cold can ruin your week, but it doesn't have to

I have a friend who is suffering from a cold. He lives on the west coast in the recently wind-stricken California. I live in the Midwest. The climate and humidity levels are probably nowhere near comparable. Still, I think the best way to battle the cold is simple:

1. DRINK WATER- Your body will thank you. You’ll get all kinds of hydration for those suffering mucus membranes, your sinuses are less likely to cause you painful pressure, and you’ll get yourself flushed out clean as a whistle. I’m sure there are other sound medical reasons for drinking water to help treat a cold, but these are my reasons.

2. GET YOUR VITAMINS- This goes without saying. Think of the alphabet. Vitamins A, B, C, D, and E are all linked to possible immune boosting properties. Not to mention, Vitamin B help with water retention and energy. You can try echinacea, but be careful with dosage and duration.

3. SLEEP- Obviously. Your body can’t fight off invaders very well if you’re not getting the recommended 40 winks, or whichever amount they say is healthiest these days. If laying down is killing your head, get a little ibuprofen to keep the swelling down. But, only after you have fully hydrated. The hydration should take care of this after 15-20 minutes of reasonably steady water intake.

4. CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP- I don’t know why, but this stuff (especially the homemade kind) is so nourishing and delicious, it’s like waving a magic wand. My mom has a great recipe (memorized, not written) for homemade soup. I don’t know it, but it involves real swanson chicken broth, a whole chicken, chopped celery, chopped carrots, salt and pepper. Very simple. It is heavenly. 

5. KEEP MOVING- Don’t allow yourself to be dormant just because you have a cold. A moderate workout will do your body good. It’s like accelerating your recovery.

That’s it. Take it or leave it. But, I tell you no lie… I can’t remember the last time I had a bad cold.

The People Person’s Paper People

4 12 2011,0,5287319.story

There is now a real Dunder-Mifflin paper brand. It is part of the real failing paper business. But in spite of the apparent end for paper companies, it was just bought by for distribution. As a former fan, I would have been excited about this about three years ago.
The fictional Dunder-Mifflin was failing (as far as I’m concerned) by the end of the 5th season.

Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant started the original Office british comedy with painfully awkward situations for their painfully awkward characters, and it ended after Season Two, resolving at the reuniting of the two romantic characters Dawn and Tim. While it leaves fans wanting more, at least it doesn’t drive fans away when the show they had come to love for it’s simple plot and deadpan, sometimes quirky humor, transforms into a more commerical, watered-down version of itself, accomodating a widespread cross-section of viewers that it couldn’t reach before because it’s humor was just too “weird” for the masses. In short, the Office sold out.

Let’s go back to the days when there was no continual plot underlying a slew of episodes, only the hint of a romance between Jim, who can never catch a break, and Pam who doesn’t know how to go after what she wants. Steve Carell made a brilliant character in Michael Scott, the slightly arrogant, always ignorant, and generally out-of-line boss who could bring about a sense of sweetness and pity for his socially illiterate ways. Rainn Wilson had an original comic performance with Dwight Schrute, the beet farmer of German descent interested in all things Sci-Fi, and fiercely loyal with a side of gullibility. John Krasinski was the underachieving Jim, obsessed with the practical joke, and displayed a great misuse of time in talking to the secretary and finding ways to make Dwight the butt of any joke he could scheme.
In these episodes the humor was enough. It was easy to watch. It was easy to laugh. The cast was strong, there was no need to write a complex plot with a dash of drama. That was what killed Dunder-Mifflin for me. The drama. I don’t think that the addition of characters (like Andy and Erin) had anything to do with it. Scranton wasn’t made for the Rom-Com.
But, in some way the paper company will live on, as long as people keep doing their business on paper.
I think I’ll go buy some reems, in honor of the Dundie.

Hot Diggety BLOG!

4 12 2011

I am a new blogger. I imagine that there are bloggers out there, blogging feverishly and religiously, and that anything I post might be up for criticism or applause.

I have some questions.

  1. What is a kitchen sink? I can hide or show one on my blog, but that doesn’t mean anything to me.
  2. How do I know who is reading my blog?
  3. Do I have friends that are masquerading as bloggers, somewhere out there in Word Press land?

Well, there is a lot to learn. I have little to no idea what all these buttons and tabs are for, but this is no time to explore. Not yet. I am making spaghetti with an extra dash of minced garlic and listening to pandora radio.  I am such a hipster.