Wednesday, September 28, 2005

where i'm at

so much is happening in my life right now. much of it very good.

my new "apprentice" started last week and seems to be working out well. she isn't the cutting-edge-on-top-of-current-trends person i was hoping for. however, she is close in age to me. she doesn't talk incessantly. she isn't too quiet. she does well with the little dude. she is VERY on time. she cleans up after herself. she has been very responsible thus far. she seems dedicated to the job. she learns quickly. she doesn't complain. and most importantly, she's just plain nice. i am happy.

we got an offer on our house last week. it was quite low, so we countered their offer. since then, we have had counter offer after counter offer from them. it seems they want to squeeze every last penny out of us. it's been frustrating. today however, we signed what should hopefully be the last of them. yeah! now we just need to focus on finding a home for ourselves. it's not been easy. we've easily seen over 40 homes. none of them (except 1) have been close to what we want or need. the one that fit what we wanted already had an offer and was very high in our price range, so we have let that one go by. i am going tomorrow to see two more. our problem is finding something we like that also has enough room for my business. it seems to be either one or the other. never both in the same house. luckily the buyers for our house are flexible on their closing date so if it takes us a little while, they're willing to wait a bit.

the little dude has been pretty good lately. he's been getting his front two teeth for awhile now and that seems to be bothering him, but i think the worst part is behind us. he's been fighting his naps lately and we're lucky if we get one good one each day. he's really moving around now. you can't turn your back for a second. he's into everything! i really need a bigger office so that i can get everything up and off the floor. it's probably the least child-proof room in our home and the one he spends the most time in.

i sent the samples off to martha stewart living that they requested. i'm assuming that the decision making process will take some time. i'm going to try my best to be patient, but in the meantime, i'm going to have all my fingers and toes crossed! i will of course post as soon as i hear anything.

so i think that's about it for now. as if it isn't enough!

Friday, September 23, 2005

oh's my birthday!

hey, hey, it's my birthday!

i'm the big two-nine! my last year as a twenty-something!

Thursday, September 22, 2005

update on "a little bit of everything"

the office assistant: after the interview on monday i decided to hire the new girl. she seems like she's going to be a good worker and that's what matters most. she came in today for a couple hours just to get a feel for what we do. she did well, and didn't drive me crazy in the process, which is a bonus! i think the extra help is going to be great! maybe we'll even get caught up on our orders by the end of the year!

the house hunt: we just got a call from our realtor tonight that we have an offer on our house. yippee!!! we have NO, let me stress NO LEADS on a house for ourselves! man, what have we gotten ourselves into? i guess we're going to be looking at pretty much every new house that comes onto the market. usually selling your house is the stressful part. i never thought i'd be stressed out about finding one!

the good news: i got a phone call from martha stewart living magazine on friday! yes....THEY called ME!! it seems that someone in their office picked up my media kit at the national stationery show this year! the person i spoke with was looking for specific products for an upcoming editorial she was working on.....and she wanted to know if i had anything that fit! i didn't really have exactly what she was looking for, so i busted my butt this weekend to whip up some new designs to send off to her. she should have received them by today. i'm keeping every set of fingers and toes crossed that she liked something, anything, i sent. it would be such a huge opportunity for me to be featured in that magazine! let's hope!

Sunday, September 18, 2005

a little bit of everything

well, it looks like our little sleepy town is slowly but surely getting back to normal. there are still the sorry remains of the fallen trees and branches on the curbs, but it seems that everyone has power back which is a good thing!

the little dude is one unhappy little boy. he's finally getting his front two teeth (so no more snaggletooth!). he is cranky, cranky, cranky. he has all the unfortunate symptoms of teething. appetite....major diaper rash....runny nose. you name it....he's got it! poor little dude. hopefully it will all pass quickly. for both of our sake.

the house hunt is really sucking! we go to open houses every weekend and we find nothing but garbage. it seems that everything is either really cheap and crappy or really expensive and nice. there's nothing in the middle. even the really nice ones aren't that great because none of them are really our style and would still need some updates. so frustrating. i really hope we can find something soon. i don't especially want to move around christmas again. been there....done that.

on the work front. i am SO INCREDIBLY SWAMPED i can't even believe it. it's a good thing....a very good thing, but our orders are sitting around way longer than they should before they get out. i finally broke down and put an ad in the paper for an office assistant. i have a girl coming for an interview tomorrow. god, i hope she's cool. i could really use the help but i don't want to hire someone that i'm not crazy about especially since they will be working directly with me in my office. all my other employees work out of their own homes so it doesn't really matter if they're cool or not. she sounded really nice on the phone and is about the same age, so keep your fingers crossed. i really hope it works out.

i think that pretty much sums up my life right now. more than enough for me!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

it's no katrina but….

we had a massive thunder storm here last night (tuesday).

we just happened to have some friends of our over for dinner whom we hadn’t seen in forever. they drove quite a way to see us and ended up spending some time with us down in the basement!

it rained like i have never seen it rain before. the wind was unbelievable. they say it was between 60 and 70 miles per hour which is comparable to the wind of a mild hurricane. it looked just like those winds that they send those poor news anchors out into. we saw an electrical box explode right outside of our front window. then live wires were swinging all over throwing sparks into the air. i picked up the little dude and told everyone to head for the basement. we weren’t sure exactly what was happening since we had no power and it was already dark outside. so we spent about 15-20 minutes down there after the explosion. then it started to ease up.

we headed upstairs. by this time the fire trucks and police vehicles were already all outside our house. there were people lining the streets. we talked to some neighbors for awhile and got the scoop on what everyone knew. we heard stories of trees through rooftops throughout out little town. by this time it was about 8:00 and very dark since there was no power to the street lights.

we decided to walk our main street (on which we live) to see the damage that was being described. we got the stroller and put the little dude in it. i can only imagine what was going through his little mind! “a walk….at night….cool!” he must have thought we were crazy treking through the soaked and branch covered sidewalks.

we only made it about ½ block before seeing the first tree victim. the house on the corner had a majority of a large old tree on top of their roof and leaning against the side of their house. luckily i think it was just cosmetic damage. i didn’t see any actual holes in the roof. then about another ½ block down there was a girl standing outside talking on her cell phone while both of her cars were buried by trees. she didn’t have a camera to take photos of the damage and we just so happened to have ours along, so we let her borrow it. i burned a cd of the images for her and took it over to her this morning. there were many other large branches broken along the way as well as tons of leaves and smaller branches to clean up. we heard that there was another large tree uprooted about a block away from our house in the other direction. we never made it that way to check it out.

so the fire trucks and crew were outside of our house until 2:00 in the morning….with their flashing red lights spinning in circles on our bedroom walls…..and their chainsaws…. just before they left, our power came on. (which was a blessing because we were in desperate need of our room air conditioner and our ceiling fan)

we still didn’t have much of an idea of the damage that had been done because our cable still wasn’t working this morning. finally at about 8:30 a.m. it came back on and i was able to tune into the local news to see what had happened. it didn’t sound like there were any tornados, just crazy, crazy damaging wind. they said this is the 2nd biggest power outage wisconsin has ever had.

it turns out the explosion of the electrical box was caused by the neighbor’s tree snapping and breaking the top of the pole off along with all the wires.

we were actually out of power again tonight for a couple hours when they were trying to fix the power for everyone else. you don’t realize how horrible it is without power until it happens. it sucks. we are so reliant on t.v. and computers these days that even a few hours without them seems like torture. we’re actually still missing cable as i write this. it went out when the power went out for those couple hours. so i’ll hopefully be posting this when it comes back up.

there are still many, many people without power. tons of schools were closed today because they had no power. it’s expected that the kids will probably have tomorrow off too. our estimated time for having power back to the entire down isn’t until tomorrow at midnight. (thursday night/friday morning). part of the delay is that our crews are very limited because many are helping with the relief efforts in the south. i really hope the power comes back sooner than that for those still without. one of our neighbors is actually borrowing power from us just to run their freezer so that all of their food doesn’t go bad.

i feel bad even mentioning our “problems” with the devastation that is the south right now. we are by no means in a comparable situation. going through the few hours of disconnection from the outside world really makes me appreciate how much they must be going through down there. my heart goes out to all that are affected.

Monday, September 12, 2005

stamping ≠ graphic design

so the hubby tells me this story the other day about a new lady (read: wench) who started at his job. i think the story is going to be about her and how annoying she is. or something of that nature.

well, it turns out the story is about me. and how i'm still a stamper in everyone's eyes.

you see, the new lady came over to my hubby's desk to chat or ask him a question (i'm not sure). she commented on the little dude's baby pictures. one thing leads to another and the hubby is showing her the baby announcements i made for the little dude. i'm thinking, great! she's going to comment on how beautiful they are and about how much time it must have taken me to do them. etc. etc. etc. oh no. the very first thing out of her mouth before she even opens it is: "oh, she's a stamper!". the hubby was like: "no, she's a graphic designer." her response was "oh".

the hubby said it was like her saying: "oh, you're a garbage man" and him saying "no, i'm a waste management officer". to her there simply was no difference.

well, i'm here to tell you lady: THERE IS A DIFFERENCE!! a big difference.*

thank you very much! have a nice day!

*i just want to add that there is nothing wrong with stamping. and i'm sure that there are people who are both graphic designers AND stampers. however, they are not one in the same.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

with bated breath

i'm still swamped in a sea of orders so i don't have a ton of time to blog these days. however, there is a newsworthy event in our household that needs mentioning!

drumroll please.....

the little dude crawled for the first time last night! yup....that's right....the same kid who couldn't even flip himself over a couple weeks ago, is now crawling all over the place! funny how quickly stuff falls into place. and if i wasn't busy enough already, this should make getting work done all the more interesting!

Monday, September 05, 2005

how much is that money in the windows?

the house is off. yup...that's right. no more new house for me.

we were actually VERY lucky to get out of it. i took my mom and dad through it yesterday and it turns out all the windows in the entire house are garbage. being that it was an old house, the windows were not only many, but also large. the replacement costs would have put us in the poor house.

i didn't sleep much last night worrying about how we were going to get out of the accepted offer we already had. would we be stuck with a house we couldn't afford to fix? the thought made me sick. so i made many calls trying to get every angle i could on what we should do.

it turns out in the end that i just decided to call the owner and tell her what i was thinking. (the house is "for sale by owner") i called her and told her how devastated we were, but that i thought we would have to back out of the offer. she was nonetheless disappointed, but very understanding. i was very thankful. we went to the house again today to sign a cancellation of the offer and to get our earnest money back. so it's finished and i am very relieved. as much as we really liked the house, we just don't have the cash-flow to replace tens of thousands of dollars worth of windows.

thank goodness for daddies!

Thursday, September 01, 2005

you can never have enough color

here's another way cool color site i came across today. amazing design. check it out!
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