A Re-boot

Sometimes it feels as though you're lost in a forest.  But if you stay positive and look up, you can make it through to the other side.

Sometimes it feels as though you’re lost in a forest. But if you stay positive and look up, you can make it through to the other side.

Hey.  How are things?

It’s been a while. Almost 8 months to be exact.  I guess it was time to take a break from my completely sporadic, non-grueling, when-I-felt-like-it blogging schedule.  Perhaps it’s because the last 8 months have been a time of real transition for me.  My life was turned on its head, in what turned out to be a good way.

Those of you that know me will know that I worked at my last job for 17 years.  I worked in the office, primarily in Purchasing and Materials, of a factory that painted parts for the automotive industry.  Sounds thrilling, doesn’t it?  It was a love/hate thing sometimes, but it was kind of in my blood.  This factory was owned by my parents since I was a little girl, and I started working there full time when I was about 19.  Then it changed hands about 9 years ago, and I stayed on, as did the majority of the staff.  It’s pretty safe to say that after all those years, this was in my blood, it was what I knew, and going into work every day was just like breathing.  It was natural for me.  I guess I never really envisioned myself working anywhere else or doing anything else, although I wasn’t dim enough to believe that it wasn’t a possibility.

I guess though, that nothing lasts forever.  It started to become obvious that the days that the factory would remain open were numbered.  Another new, state of the art factory was opening by the same owners, two hours away.  Though it originally seemed like there may be a chance to keep it open, eventually, the writing was on the wall.

This was pretty scary for me.  It’s scary enough when it looks like you’re going to lose your job, but it’s really scary when your job is all you know, and it’s woven into the fabric of your life so tightly that it is truly a part of who you are.  It’s also scary to think about the process of looking for another job, when I had never really done up a resume before, never been on an interview.  It was very nerve-wracking.

I started to think about where I would want to work, and what I would want in my next job.  I sent out a couple of resumes on to some online postings.  I also sent a resume to the long term care facility in our town.  They had no jobs posted, but I thought it couldn’t hurt to send in a resume and ask them to please consider me if a position in Administration became available.  To be perfectly honest, I didn’t really expect to hear from any of them.  You can imagine my surprise when I received a phone call from the LTC Home.  They had a part time, three day a week position available they wanted to see me about.  It was to cover for someone else that was on leave.  It was a temp position, but there was no end date for it.  I decided to go for it, hoping that I would be able to eventually stay on permanently. I hoped that if I got it, they would let me go down to two days a week at the factory.

I ended up getting the job.  My boss allowed me to go down to two days.  He was actually really great with me, and flexible, working with me around my new hours.  This was an extremely busy time, as although I was only there for two days a week, I still was responsible for most of the same duties I had been, I only now had to do it in two days instead of five.  This meant sometimes coming in early, staying later, and working on the weekends now and then.  That was okay though, I was extremely grateful for being able to continue on there while starting a new chapter of my life at the same time.

The inevitable ended up happening.  In August, we received notice that the company would be closing on October 3rd.  This was tough.  This was actually happening.  I had spent the better part of my life at this place.  From running around pestering everyone when I was a kid, to riding my bike up the laneway, exploring in the ravine below, to working there every day, I was finally going to have to say goodbye for good.  It was tough.  The place was a part of me.  The people were a part of me.  I was so fortunate to have somewhere to go, something to do.

And so it went.  The company closed in October, I stayed on for a couple days a week until the end, and beyond until the end of the year, doing a bit here and there for them.  I still get the odd email every now and then asking me to help out, which I don’t mind doing.  Just before Christmas, I got offered permanent full time at the nursing home (4 days Monday to Thursday) starting January 5th.  I was ecstatic.  I really love it there.  The people are wonderful, they have all been so welcoming, and I have learned so much.  It is a very different atmosphere, going from industry to healthcare, but I’m learning as I go.  I am looking forward to staying on there and heading into the future with this wonderful organization.

So 2014 was a bit of a topsy turvy year.  Beginnings, endings, uncertainty, joy, tears, a broad spectrum.   I learned a lot about myself, what I’m capable of, and what I hope to achieve in life.  I have tried to remain positive, although at times it has been tough, particularly at the beginning and middle of the year when most of the craziness was going on.  It may have been a good (and interesting) time to blog, and perhaps get everything out.  There were lots of other awesome stuff that happened, my kid started Grade One, we had another trip to Great Wolf Lodge.  We had a really great Christmas and New Year.  My parents sold their house, my childhood home, and moved into an apartment in town.  But I think it was good for me to take a step back and let things play out.  I thought I would take the time to update my readership (all three of them – you know who you are! 😉 ) on my current situation, to get that out of the way.  I would say that now, I’m likely to go back to posting about food, and books, and makeup, with the odd little update and opinion piece thrown in.  I can’t say that I’ll post with any regularity, but who knows…stranger things have happened.

I hope everyone is doing wonderfully, and that life is treating you good, and you’re all staying positive and counting your blessings every day.

Love you all to bits and you’ll be hearing from me soon.

I’m almost positive of it.

When the Tough Times Teach You a Lesson

The silver lining is there. Can you see it?

I went to a funeral yesterday.  My sister in law lost her Dad.  He was in his 86th year, and the last year or so had been a rough one for their family.  They have gone through a lot.  Hopefully they are at peace now knowing that he is now at peace, and they can move on remembering the best of times with him and keeping him alive in their hearts.

I also received news last week that a man that I have known since I was a little girl whom I have respected and admired for the better part of my life, has died.  I knew him through work, and didn’t see him very often anymore, but he was a wonderful man, and upon hearing that he passed away, I was quite saddened.  He was a younger man, in his 60’s I believe, with a wife, children and grandchildren.  He was probably on the brink of what would have been one of the best times of his life.  He and his wife likely would have travelled quite a bit, and I imagine his retirement years would have been very full and very blessed, had he not been taken so early.

Neither of these passings effected me directly.  There are a lot of other people who are suffering due to these losses, and though they have impacted me somewhat, my prayers are with the people that are truly grieving their father, husband, grandfather, etc.

Everything in life holds a lesson though, and I like to try to take something away from every experience.  Therefore, when things like this happen, they get me thinking.  These are two different situations, yet the ultimate outcome is the same:  there are two families out there that are grieving a loss right now.

I don’t think about death very much, though I will admit that since I had my son I have definitely considered it a lot more.  I think it’s natural when you have children to think about dying – hoping you stick around as long as possible so you don’t miss anything, making plans in case tragedy strikes and your child needs to be provided for, etc.

But it is in times like this, where you encounter loss that strikes a little closer to home, that you really realize that what they say: “you can be here one moment and gone the next” is totally true.  Some day, we’re not going to be here anymore.  When I look at it this way, it makes every minute precious.  It makes wasting time a horrible thing.  It makes me want to grab on to the people I love and squeeze them tight, so that there will never be a question of how much I love them.

I try to find the good and the positive in every situation.  Maybe a month from now, when I’m stressing about something that I can’t change, that I shouldn’t be stressing over, I’ll look back on this time and remember that I shouldn’t sweat the small stuff.  Maybe 3 months from now when it’s summer and my kid is driving me crazy because it’s summer and he is bored, I’ll remember this and instead of pulling my hair out, I’ll take a deep breath and remember he’s a kid, and he’s bored, and he just wants my attention.  Maybe when my Dad cooks something in my kitchen and leaves the stove a mess because he boiled something over, I’ll remember that I’m just lucky that a) someone is cooking me a meal and I don’t have to do it, and b) someday he won’t be here to cook for me and I’ll remember this wishing he was messing up my stove again.

Life is full of tough times.  Some times are worse than others.  Some people seem to have it worse than others.  I think the important thing to remember is when tough times happen, the best way we can deal with them is to look for the positive things.  I believe every cloud has a silver lining, and there is a lesson to be learned from everything life sends our way.

Until next time.

Grateful – #blessedin2013

What a wonderful outlook to have.

What a wonderful outlook to have.

Way too often, we let all the crap that happens in life bring us down.  Sometimes life is hard.  Sometimes it’s really, really hard.  There is no doubt that everyone today has something or other to deal with.  Something that keeps us from saying “life is perfect.”

Yes, sometimes life sucks.  And sometimes we look around us and we feel like we are alone in our misery and that no one understands.  Trust me when I say that is not true.  We all have times of despair, and if you feel bad, all you have to do is look around to find someone that has it as bad or worse, who has been there before, or will go there someday.  No one is immune.

In the meantime, it certainly helps to look around you and count your blessings.  Remember all the good things you have in life to be thankful for.  I made a New Years resolution this year, to post on Twitter every single day of 2013 something in my life that I’m grateful for.  I’m going to use the hashtag #blessedin2013.  I’m sure that some will be profound, but others may be as simple as someone thinking about me or doing something for me in a tiny little way that made my day better.

Life is hard sometimes.  As human beings I truly believe it’s in our nature to care.  To care about what happens to us, and to other people.  It affects us.  But if you stop and add up all the good things in your life it helps.  It may not take away all the bad stuff, but it may help make that bad stuff just a bit more bearable.

I wish you all the best in 2013.  I hope it is an amazing year, filled with wonderful things.  I hope you’ll join me over on Twitter and remember for yourself all the great things you have to be grateful for.

#blessedin2013

 

All that Thanksgiving crap…

Booze? Yeah, I'm thankful for booze. But I'm more thankful for what this bottle represents.

Ah, Thanksgiving. One of my favourite holidays of the year. I know, you're thinking – this is going to be one of those sappy Thanksgiving posts where she shares all the things in life she's thankful for. Alas, you are correct.

So where do I start? Because seriously, the list is long. I'm pretty sure it would exhaust any polite reading threshold you may have and have you clicking on to find that perfect pumpkin pie recipe, which I happened to make the other day. Try this, it was very good.

Obviously the list starts with family for me. Family of course is multi-faceted, with a few branches. The first provides my foundation, my parents, grandparents, and everyone else that comes with them. I have been very fortunate to come from a very loving, supportive family. Each and every one of them made me who I am today. My parents are the most amazing people I know. They have been there with me every step of the way throughout my life supporting me and being their awesome, amazing, generous selves.

Of course family for me has branched out to my amazing husband with whom I just celebrated 10 years of wedded bliss with last week. (See champagne, above). It hasn't all been roses, there have been times where mutual neck wringing has been considered. But I wouldn't change a thing. Every single moment of our marriage has brought us to where we are right now. Solid, happy, and possibly more in love with each other than we were 10 years ago. He is my other half, and I am so thankful for him, and the extended family he has brought into my life. Every day I wake up and make a conscious decision to work with him. To work on us. For us, and for the family we've built together.

Speaking of what we've built together, no list like this would be complete without the one thing I am most thankful in the world for: my son. Nicholas has brought so much joy and so much light into my life. I love that child so much that it doesn't seem like I could possibly love him any more. Then, remarkably, I wake up the next day, and I do love him more. He is an amazing kid, and it has been such a gift to watch him grow, and I can't believe how lucky I feel every single time that child calls me Mommy.

In addition to family, I am also blessed to have several good friends. If you're reading this, you know who you are. Some I've literally known forever, and some just a few years, and various amounts of time in between. However long I've known them, I have an amazing support system. I have no blood sisters, but I have several women who I could not love more if they were my sisters. I've learned a lot about friendship over the last few years, and incredibly lucky I am to have each and every one of them love me for who I am, no matter what.

I have several other things to be thankful for. My health, I realize how important that is. Employment for Joe and myself. In today's economy, we are both fortunate to have jobs that put a roof over our head and food on the table. I'm thankful for all the pleasures I enjoy in life, and that I'm physically able to enjoy them – cooking, reading, music, technology – all those little things that shape my life. I'm thankful for them all.

I hope you all are able to come up with a good long list of all the things you're thankful for. And if you've read this far, I'm thankful for you too.

Gobble Gobble.

;

Attitude – A Rant. You’ve been warned.

Just a bunch of cry babies!

Every now and then a girl just has to get things off her chest.  Some cry about it, some scream about it.  I’m gonna blog about it.

I honestly think that the biggest problem that plagues society today is people and their bad attitudes.  Some people honestly wouldn’t know a positive comment if someone came along and hit them over the head with one.  I know I wrote in one of my previous blog entries that there are some people that you just can’t please, and you just have to move on and not let them bother you.

Well heck.  Today, they are bothering me!  Some people are just so negative, so sour, so argumentative and confrontational, it makes me want to dump a bucket of ice water on their heads.  They are nasty, nasty NASTY!

PEOPLE!  Lighten up a bit!  I know that sometimes life isn’t fair.  Sometimes people mistreat you, sometimes the crap just keeps piling up.  But having a bad attitude about the whole thing, dropping f-bombs left, right and center may make you feel better about things, but trust me, it’s driving everyone else around you CRAZY!

Your negative attitude is only bringing down the people around you.  It’s not doing you any good.  You may think that it feels good to complain about things and make your beefs known.  All you are doing is feeding into your own anger and keeping it alive.  Just think.  Just think of how much better your life could be if whenever something happens that normally would send you into orbit, you just said “Nope.  I’m not going to let it get the better of me.  I’m not going to let something that is out of my control get me down in the dumps.”  I know that every now and then it does get so bad that you have to let it out.  That’s what I’m doing right now.  Normally I can turn the other cheek and ignore the negativity.  Today, it just annoyed me to the point where I have to let it out.  That happens.  But it’s almost like the boy who cried wolf.  If all people hear from you is complaining, it quickly becomes white noise and has no meaning.  If you are generally a positive person and don’t complain much, looking at life like it is a bowl of cherries and spitting the pits out and forgetting about them – then when you do have a complaint to make, and it’s made in the right way – people are much more likely to listen and do something to help you.

So buck up Buttercup!  Smile a bit.  Don’t let things get to you and worry you so much.  Your friends will thank you, your family will thank you, your co-workers will thank you.  Your doctor will thank you too – you’ll live longer!

Peace!