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The Creative Challenge.

I have always fancied myself a creative person but ever since I went back to work I have struggled to find that part of myself.  I sat down with my daughter to paint the other day and I was blank.  I couldn’t find a single stroke to put on the canvas.  Madison looked at me and asked why I wasn’t painting.  “I have nothing” I told her.  “As much as I want to paint I simple can’t find any inspiration to put onto the canvas.”

“That is because you have forgotten how to dream” she responded.

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“Well ever since you went back to work you have your head filled with work stuff.  All you think about is work and bills, and the house.  When you fill your head with that there isn’t any room for dreaming.  If you can’t dream, you can’t create.”

You know I really don’t remember the last time I had a dream.  Such wisdom from a young mind.

So now it is time for me to find my creativity again.  It is a part of me that I love and don’t wish to lose.  I am challenging myself to do something creative everyday for the next 365 days!  It doesn’t have to be something phenomenal it just has to be something.

So today is the first day of my challenge.  Do you think coloring my hair would be considered creative? Okay I may be stretching it a little.  So instead I have baked today.  A coffee cake and brownies…creativity in the kitchen.  It isn’t much but it’s a start.

As for tomorrow let’s see what I can come up with.

I challenge you to join me in the creative challenge.  Get in touch with your creative side and share your accomplishment with me.  Don’t let the best part of you get lost.  You know the famous saying….use it or lose it!

Who knows….maybe I can even start dreaming again!

 

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Always Time for More.

Well it has certainly been a long time since I have visited my blog.  All I can say is WOW!!!! Life sure can change in six months.  I have managed to go from being a stay at home mom for eighteen years to a full-time employee in a thriving company.

So now I should be able to answer the ever-present question … is it harder to be a stay at home mom or a working mom?  The answer is simple…neither one is very easy.  I can’t say one is harder than other just different.  As a working mom I sure have had to learn to let a lot of things slide such as housework and cooking.  Neither of which I can say makes me very upset.  Working prevents me from having some time just to myself which I do miss.  However, working certainly gives me a great deal more self-satisfaction than I ever had as a stay at home mom.  Being a stay at home mom is probably one of the loneliest jobs in the world and the pay back is next to nothing.  I can’t tell you how good it feels to have someone tell you are doing a good job and that your efforts are appreciated.

I like the way I have tackled my life.  I wouldn’t give up my years at home with my kids for anything.  Did I ever expect that at this time in my life there would be a chance for me to still have a career?  Absolutely not, but what an incredible surprise to find out that there is still so much left for me to do.  I don’t really have to give up on my dreams of having a career or advancing in the workplace.  Only time will tell.  All I know is that as long as I am willing to work hard and dream big I can have almost anything I want.  A lesson I hope my kids will learn from watching me embrace life’s opportunities.

So whether you are a working parent getting ready to stay home or a stay at home parent getting ready to work it really doesn’t matter.  We are all just people tackling life as it comes to us, doing the best we can and trying to make each day the best it can be.  We are never too old to dream and it is never too late to try something new.  Our kids are watching us and our actions will always speak louder than our words.  So instead of telling them that they can be or do whatever than want show them.

Live your life in a way that you would want your kids to live theirs.  Be the person that you want your kids to be.  Don’t be afraid to fail, just be willing to try.  You don’t have to be perfect you just have to be your best.  You can’t always have everything you want but you can always have everything you need.  Sometimes we have to sacrifice and other times we can indulge.  These are the lessons your child is learning by watching you live.

This is just me learning to be the new me!

 

Give Me A Chance!

 

Day after day I filled out job applications, wrote new resumes, and cover letters.  I tried desperately to think of new and creative ways to put a spin on the fact that I am a forty-five year old mother of three who hasn’t had a “real job” in almost eighteen years. Day after day I checked my phone and emails to see if I sparked the slightest interest in any prospective employer, but alas the little green light was not flashing on my phone and the only emails where the usual requests for payments or notifications from the schools.  BUT I DON’T GIVE UP!

I know I have a lot to offer and I would be an asset to any company if given the chance.  A chance that is all I need but do I want to wait around for someone else to believe in me.  I believe in myself and I can give myself the chance?

I am no longer going to wait for someone else to give me an opportunity, I am going to make my own!  So what shall I do?  Why not hit the internet and see what is out there.  This is the thought process that went through my head last week as I set about searching the internet to find something I could sink my teeth into and create my own opportunity.

I came across an online jewelry boutique.  For no cost I could set up an online jewelry store!  This had me written all over it.  Many years ago I did those annoying house parties and sold a very nice line of jewelry and was quite successful at it, but honestly I have never been a fan of the “parties.”  So this sounded perfect.  So here I am the proud owner of an online jewelry boutique called “Simply Perfect.”

As fate would have it the moment I decided to take matters into my own hands the magic green light began to flash on my phone.  Yes, believe it or not, I was finally able to catch a break and someone appreciated the skills I have developed over the years and in more particular the last year and called me for an interview.  By the end of the day I had a job offer.  Two days later I was starting my new job!

Isn’t it funny how things work.  I think God was waiting to see if I was willing to step up and take control myself.  Waiting to see if I was just going to sit around and wait for someone else to give me an opportunity or was I going to make my own opportunities.

So now I both employed and the owner of an on-line jewelry boutique!  I’ve always been good a multitasking and eighteen years of being a stay at home mom has taught me to nurture and develop my creations, so I am not giving up on the jewelry.  I will give my spare time (haha) to it and make it what I can and it will always remind me that I believed in myself!

Don’t sit around and wait for opportunities, make your own!  Life can be an exciting adventure if you chose to go out and explore it!

 

Call Me…Please! Call Me…Maybe?

Daily Prompt:  Call Me Maybe:  Describe your relationship with your phone. Is it your lifeline, a buzzing nuisance, or something in between?

waiting_for_phone_to_ring

 

I sit and stare at it willing it to ring.  Come on phone ring…ring…ring!  Then like magic the I hear the beautiful voice of Alicia Keys singing “This Girl Is On Fire.”  (Okay so my choice in ring tones is a little off but it is supposed to be inspiring)  Quickly I pick up the phone and with bated breath I wait to hear the voice on the other end. 

Is this the decision maker of the house?”

I’m quickly deflated and before spewing my disappointment and frustration on the poor sole just trying to make a living, I hang up the phone.

My phone and I have developed a love/hate relationship as of late.  You see being a forty-five year old woman who hasn’t held a real job in almost 18 years, waiting to hear from the millions of job applications she has sent out, can wreak havoc on your relationship with your phone.

So you see I am trying to stay positive, surrounding myself with the words of Alicia Keys…”This Girl is On Fire”, but I am nearing desperation and may soon use the words of Carle Rae Jepsen… “Call Me Maybe. 

Here is to all my fellow stay at home moms trying to find their way back into the work force.  Keep your head up, your spirit high and your phone close by because one of these days it’s just gotta ring and until then… create your own destiny!

CMDestiny

 

 

Mamma Needs a New Pair of Shoes

MP9004049221That’s right, this Mamma needs a new pair of shoes.  Time to throw away the old comfortable loafers and grab a new pair of fashionable, professional shoes.

For eighteen years I have been wearing the practical mom shoes.  You know how it is, the first few years you spend running after the kids then you spend the next fifteen years running them around, play group, little league, school parties, doctor’s appointments, workouts, work, it just keeps going and going.  Well this middle age mom is ready to trade those practical shoes in for a pair of shoes that might not be quite so comfortable but are definitely more exciting.

I have spent the last year re-educating myself to enter back into the work force.  Once upon a time a long, long time ago I was more than just a wife and mother.  I was actually a professional making a good salary and participating in the world of people over twenty years old.  As a matter of fact I was pretty darn good at what I did.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret my decision to stay at home with my kids, it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  My kids have thrived from having me at home, but my job with them is pretty much done, so now it is time to revisit me.

So here I sit on the edge of a new beginning.  The schooling is done the resume is written and the applications are filled out.  Now I just have to sit and wait.  The resume writing was a challenge and a half.  How is it that you can turn raising three kids, one husband and managing a home look impressive work experience?  I guess that is where my creative writing comes in handy.  Let’s be real, running a household isn’t that much different from running a business.  I can balance a budget, multitask, I’m organized, work well under pressure, deal well with conflict, a great team builder.  Yup being a mom, or domestic engineer as I prefer to call it, gives you most of the skills you need for any job.

2013 promises to be an exciting new year.  This old dog is ready to try some new tricks.  I better reorganize my closet so I can make room for those new shoes.

To my fellow stay-at-home moms and/or middle age women I hope you wear whatever shoes you want to.  Don’t be afraid to try on a new pair if they keep calling your name.  No they may not be as comfortable as your old ones but with a little time you can break them in.  If you are satisfied with the shoes you are currently wearing be proud of yourself for what you are doing.  We are all contributing to society in one way or another and we need to be proud of that.  Don’t short change yourself you still have the skills to compete in the work force if you so chose.  If you have another dream hold on tight to it, your time will come, don’t give up and believe in yourself.  Before you know it the kids won’t need you as much any more and you take a little time for yourself.

Wish me luck…it’s been a long time since I’ve had to knock on doors and sell myself as an asset to your company!

Finishing is Merely Beginning Again

I’m so close I can taste it.  The finish line is within site and I am sprinting toward it, looking for that last kick, the rush of adrenaline to propel me forward and declare victory!  Is that the crowd I hear cheering me on, raising their voices, clapping their hands, pushing me to reach the finish line in a blare of glory.  Nope, it’s just my kids whining about super not being on the table and the laundry stacking up, but wait I do hear a cheer in the background, it’s my husband, excited about the prospect of me finally finishing my schooling so I can get out and earn some money.

I am almost there, another two weeks and this year of educating myself at the ripe old age of forty-five will be complete.  I can’t believe I did it (almost).  It has been a challenge balancing family, home and school. There were many a day when I wish I hadn’t started this journey, but the stubborn side of me was not going to start something without finishing.  I was not about to show my kids that failing or quitting was an option.

So here I am facing the finish line in this most challenging journey. Believe it or not I think I might miss it when I’m done.  It has been a constant companion and has allowed me the opportunity to realize that I am still an intelligent person with the ability to learn new things.  Being a stay at home mom made me feel like my mind was turning into a bowl full of jelly  but now I realize I didn’t lose anything.  Instead, I see that the years I dedicated myself to my family taught me to be patient, determined, organized and creative, all traits that allowed me to be successful in my studies.

With the finish line in site I am racing forward, propelled by the pride in my accomplishment.  My arms stretched in front of me reaching for the ribbon, preparing myself to throw up my hands in victory, I catch something out of the corner of my eye.  Far in the distance I see yet another black and white banner stretched across the path.  In celebrating my victory for this grand accomplishment I realize that the finish line of this journey is merely the starting line to my next great challenge!

Much like a runner, I look forward to my next race.  Instead of fearing it, my year of training has given me the tools and confidence I need to take my place in the starting blocks with the expectation of running a personal best. I look to the stands and see my husband and children.  In their faces I see the reflections of the past year and I realize that when I was tired or discouraged it was their support that lifted me back to my feet.  It was their hands that put the laundry into the machine or the dinner on the table when I was unable to.  This next race I will run for them as well as for myself.

Thank you for the support and I can only hope in return I have made you proud and taught you a few things.  From my example I hope you see that you are never too old to start something new, with hard work and determination you can accomplish anything and most importantly, never give up!

Doin’ The Happy Dance

Oh ya, I’m doing a happy dance!  Not a pretty sight but I don’t really care.

Just finished My Anatomy and Physiology class.  Medical Terminology.. done, Anatomy and Physiology.. done…Medical Coding here I come!

Okay so it wasn’t a super hard challenge considering I already have a degree in Nursing Science and taught Anatomy and Physiology for a couple semesters, but still, it is a lot different being on the other side of the exams.  Not to mention the pressure from the kids.  Oh ya, they just love to get back at me.  You know the saying “What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.”  Apparently I am the gander.  “Why did you get one wrong?  Didn’t you study?  An A is only good if you put your full effort into it”.  I have never spent more time eating my own words!

As a reward for my accomplishments I think a little shopping is in order as well as a slight detour from the diet.  What better way to celebrate than a new pair of shoes, an iced latte (with whipping cream), and a giant brownie.

Dance on Mamma, dance on!