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Hi Blog, How Are You?

December 15, 2010

I have neglected my blog for the past couple of months mainly because of this. But also, almost at the same time the store opened, I started going back to school for graphic design. And even now it sounds crazy but I knew that I couldn’t put it off any longer. Probably since my junior year of college, I have thought about going back to get an A.S. in Graphic Design. When deciding what my major would be in college, I settled on advertising because I figured that it was a good mix of business and creativity (and I had to pick a degree). I thought that an advertising track would encompass some design, but it didn’t, and by then there were too many prerequisites that I hadn’t taken for design to be my minor. After graduating and becoming an account executive at an ad agency, it hit me in an even more concrete way that, although I enjoyed coming up with ideas for advertising campaigns, what I really wanted to do was design them.

It was a little scary at first,  going back to school while staying debt-free and balancing my marriage, a full-time job and a social life, but I knew that the nagging in my heart wasn’t going to go away. I didn’t want to look back on my life and wish I would have taken a shot at a career I really loved. It has always been difficult for me to pinpoint where my passions lie. I was never a girl who wanted to be ____ when I grew up. In the past, I recall saying to friends who were struggling with education/job decisions, “At least you know what gets you excited. When you have that focus you’ll always figure a way to do what you love. I have no idea what job would make me feel fulfilled.” And realistically, I guess  I still don’t totally have the answer to what will fulfill me in a career, but I do have hope that the I am headed in the right direction.

The longings of your heart are not incidental; they are critical messages. The desires of your heart are not to be ignored, they are to be consulted. As the wind turns the weather vane, so God uses your passions to turn your life.

-Max Lucado

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Little Bird Handmade, Consignment and More

September 15, 2010

This is what has been making me happy and taking up most of my time lately. It’s been amazing to see a concept go from an idea in the heads of me, my mom and my sister to an actual open store with real customers. It’s been challenging, rewarding, beautiful, fulfilling and exhausting all at the same time. But in the end, I think it’s come out better than what I could have ever imagined. Now to just keep it going for another few decades.

Our website:

www.TheLittleBirdStore.com

On Facebook:

http://bit.ly/d9FQ99

On Twitter:

www.twitter.com/LittleBirdStore

Sarah Beth Boldman

August 6, 2010

My beautiful niece Sarah Beth Boldman was born July 29th at 11:30 p.m. She was 7 pounds and 19.7 inches long.

Sarah Beth will be the 5th niece/nephew that has become a part of my immediate family. Her birth has been very emotional for me, not only because of the five years it took for my sister-in-law to get pregnant but also because I’m about at the age where I am ready to have a kiddo of my own. Seeing how happy my brother and sister-in-law are makes me think that I can’t wait to have the same experience with my husband. Just contemplating Gary being a father, the father that he never had, turns my heart to mush. We are in a really amazing, happy, secure place right now and we’re more ready for a baby than ever. But there are still some financial goals we want to accomplish first, like having a sizable nest egg and buying a house. So until we get to that place, I’ll have Sarah Beth and my niece Sofia, who will be born on August 11th (scheduled c-section), to hold off the baby itch. And that brings me unimaginable joy.

Do You Play The Game?

August 3, 2010

This post from Donald Miller’s blog hit me hard today. Particularly this part:

When I lose my temper, it’s usually because I don’t want to get taken advantage of, I don’t want to be disrespected. I’ve stepped into a game in which people are keeping score, and I’m determined not to lose. But the truth is, there is no game, it’s just a hoax, and the only way to show others there is no game is to lose and show how much it didn’t matter.

It’s easy to look at life as a game that you’re either winning or losing, that you have to get the upper hand and that you have to be right. A lot of times, I think that I must get my point across and stand up for what’s right because I don’t want other people to think their inaccurate information or bad behavior is okay. But in the long run, who is really going to care if you’ve got more check marks in the “right” category? The game is only there if you play it and no matter how frustrating it may be, it’s your choice to walk away. Happiness is understanding that you don’t always have to win.

Cool Dog

July 27, 2010

My husband sent me a link to the internet sensation known as Cool Dog last week and I just can’t stop looking at his nonchalant arm position and head tilt. I am so obsessed that the picture below is now the desktop wallpaper on my laptop at work. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have. I aspire to one day be as cool as Cool Dog.

Picture via KnowYourMeme.com

Grandpa

July 17, 2010

My dad’s dad passed away last night from colon cancer. He was a funny, intelligent, caring man and a wonderful role model. We’ll miss you Grandpa.

The Giving Pledge

July 14, 2010

TheGivingPledge.org is a site created by Warren Buffett explaining his commitment to give away 99% of his fortune to philanthropy and a call for other wealthy people to do the same. This is an excerpt from the about section:

Some material things make my life more enjoyable; many, however, would not. I like having an expensive private plane, but owning a half-dozen homes would be a burden. Too often, a vast collection of possessions ends up possessing its owner. The asset I most value, aside from health, is interesting, diverse, and long-standing friends.

My wealth has come from a combination of living in America, some lucky genes, and compound interest. Both my children and I won what I call the ovarian lottery. (For starters, the odds against my 1930 birth taking place in the U.S. were at least 30 to 1. My being male and white also removed huge obstacles that a majority of Americans then faced.)

My luck was accentuated by my living in a market system that sometimes produces distorted results, though overall it serves our country well. I’ve worked in an economy that rewards someone who saves the lives of others on a battlefield with a medal, rewards a great teacher with thank-you notes from parents, but rewards those who can detect the mispricing of securities with sums reaching into the billions. In short, fate’s distribution of long straws is wildly capricious.

The reaction of my family and me to our extraordinary good fortune is not guilt, but rather gratitude. Were we to use more than 1% of my claim checks on ourselves, neither our happiness nor our well-being would be enhanced. In contrast, that remaining 99% can have a huge effect on the health and welfare of others. That reality sets an obvious course for me and my family: Keep all we can conceivably need and distribute the rest to society, for its needs. My pledge starts us down that course.

It fills my heart with  joy to know that there are people in the world, especially one of Mr. Buffett’s stature, who see past the facade of wealth and realize that there are much more gratifying things in life. I also agree with his statements about how much of his good fortune was gained by sheer luck of genetics and geography and that it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense that he is rich while soldiers and teachers are rewarded modestly. Hopefully, The Giving Pledge will start a positive trend of America’s collective focus shifting from the value in someone’s bank account to the value of their heart, mind and hands.