Tuesday, December 30, 2014

End of the Year

So I, for one, will be very happy to see the end of 2014. I feel like there will be a whole new beginning for 2015 for me. For more than half of 2014, I was unemployed. Which sometimes, was nice. But most of the time it was stressful, depressing and not a whole lot of fun. I'm ready for a fresh start.

Last week I received an email from one of the owners of the small design company that I worked at that one day and hated... Well, she wanted to me come in for an additional day. My first thought was "No way!" But then I figured, what the heck. I'm not doing anything, they would pay me, and maybe it won't be as bad on the second day. Well, I was wrong. It was equally as horrible. Probably even more so, because they wanted me for the whole day, instead of just 5 hours. 8 hours is a very long time when you're somewhere you don't want to be! The woman is just nasty. I honestly think she has a dual personality. She's nice when you're chatting about life and family, but once the work face comes on, look out! There is just no way I would work for anyone like that. But I'm glad I gave it another try. Just to make 100% certain that my first impression was correct. I almost look forward to her offering me a job next week and getting to turn her down. I did not mention I had a job lined up already.

And in other news, I have one last interview tomorrow. My friend, the Executive Director of the Mansion, found out about a job opening at a company downtown. (FOCUS Greater Syracuse), and they need a marketing coordinator. It's not even posted yet. I sent my resume, 2 hours later I got a response and an interview lined up for tomorrow. Hey, why not. And sadly, I'm still waiting for some sort of response from the Housing place... they sure are taking their own sweet time! But it is the holidays, and I'm sure the ones that have to make the big decisions are all on vacation.

Meanwhile, I need to go pee in a cup today and pass a drug test so I can start my new job at Channel 3 next week...

Friday, December 26, 2014

Post-Christmas Post

Christmas 2014 is over. I think it was my favorite Christmas in years. Mostly because I didn't have to work. I enjoyed the tree every day. I listened to Christmas music, wrapped gifts, made dozens of cookies and other treats. And I had no stress to go with it. It was lovely. I also didn't have the stress of not having a job anymore, since I have one now. And I still have another week off before I have to go back to work!

This is the calm before the storm. 

We all ate breakfast before we tore into the presents. 

It didn't take long. Big things come in small packages these days. 

Eric was pleased with all his gifts.

Then we headed up to Fulton. We brought Sheila a shiny new grill for Christmas. And then Eric and Gary cooked up some amazing steak and turkey tips.

Oh, it was so good.

Some of the kids were on their various devices most of the evening.

Then dinner was ready. It was awesome. As usual.

Eric was all tuckered out.

The girls and Paula.

I think I need to get this recipe. Pistachio cool whip cake... OMG. It was so good.

Sheila gave Eric his old stocking. Isn't it adorable!? 

Friday, December 19, 2014


Just wanted to do a quick update. No official or final news on any front. I've managed to hold off making a final decision with Ch. 3 until Monday. Have not heard from the Housing place, But wasn't expecting to until next week. No other news to report. Just looking forward to a fun holiday-filled weekend. I'm helping at the Breakfast with Santa event at the Mansion tomorrow. Then coming home to bake and wrap, stare at the pretty tree, listen to Christmas music and maybe watch some fun Christmas movies. We still haven't watched Christmas Vacation yet. So that will probably happen this weekend. 

I took Alex up to the Mansion today for a tour and a quick history lesson. He's going to be doing an internship there over break. They're putting together a museum room with a lot of the old artifacts, photographs, articles, etc. He's going to be working with a guy who is in town for the next month who is a graduate student/employee at the National Archives in Washington, DC. I think Alex will enjoy learning about the Mansion and meeting someone who shares his love for history.

Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Job Offer #1.

Well, I got one! I got an official offer from Channel 3. The money was as expected, not so good. But it would be a job. I asked if I could consult with my husband and get back to them, so I have until close of business today to respond.

I have interview #3 today with Housing Visions. I am going to be giving a presentation to the VP of my portfolio of design work and PR/Marketing work. I'm kind of excited about it. After my last interview, I feel a lot more comfortable with that position. It's very graphic/social media/marketing intensive. All the things I love to do. There's some PR, but not a ton. And I can write press releases, so that's about all I'd need for that end of it. Yesterday they contacted my references, so I'm hoping that's good news. This job would pay $20k more (yeah, that's a lot) than the job at Channel 3. So that's really a no-brainer. And it would be a step up for my career and open future doors for me. It would be an amazing opportunity. I've just got to have a great interview today and secure the job. No pressure!!

Alex returns today. He's taking the train home and will be here around 3:30. The house will be full. The fridge and pantry are already full in anticipation of more mouths to feed. Jenny won't know what to do with herself with all these people in her house again.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

One down.

The only good thing that came out of today's working interview at the small design company was a paycheck. Well, that and the knowledge that I absolutely, positively do not want to work there. The woman was a nut job. A psycho, mean, nasty nut job. I am so glad I had the opportunity to see it first hand before I had committed to working there. I liked her during the initial interview. In a working environment with her as my boss? Not so much. So I'm taking that place off my list.

I have an interview on Thursday with the Housing Visions place. I'm nervous, but I am interested to see what transpires. Channel 3 has not called. Hoping they wait another couple of days before contacting me.

In the meantime, I have absolutely no commitments tomorrow. Not one. I can't wait. I do plan on baking some cookies and wrapping some presents. And eating some cookies. And listening to Christmas music. And eating some more cookies.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Multiple Offers??

So I feel like I am almost certain to have a job offer by the end of this week. But from where? And will it be more than 1 job? Might it even be 3 jobs? Perhaps! I might just have to pick one. What a quandary that would be after all this!

Well, so far I know that Channel 3 called of my references today. That must mean they're getting close to offering me a job. One would think anyway. Tomorrow I am working at the Type Partners place from 10-3. I hope we all work well together and that it goes really well. I also hope that if it does go well, they offer me something soon. Also, the 2nd interview at Housing Visions went so well, she wants me to come back this week for a 3rd interview, with the President of the company. (No pressure.) So yeah, things are moving quickly.

My hope is to start a new job at the first of the year. Wouldn't that be a great way to start 2015? It would be especially nice since my benefits run out the first week of January. It would be perfect timing.

Oh, and on the mouse front, we're at #4 on the captured list. There can't possibly be that many more, can there??

Friday, December 12, 2014

Job Update

I feel like things might finally be coming together for me. Yesterday I had a fantastic interview at a small graphic design company. By small, I mean 3 people work there. They've been in business for 20 years. The 2 partners have been anyway. Next Tuesday I'm going to go in for a "trial run" and work for a day with them. And get paid too! I think that's a neat idea. I'm pretty excited about it. I think it would be a nice fit for me. I passed the resume test, only 2 of us are left in the running for the job. Odd are good. Fingers crossed!!

Today at 1 pm, I have a second interview at the Housing Visions place for the Marketing Manager position. I'm actually surprised by this. My marketing background isn't that impressive. But maybe they're looking to expand the role into a more graphic intensive position. Which I'm kind of hoping. She said she wanted to discuss the position and my experience a little more. So that's interesting.

Other than that, I'm still waiting to hear from Ch. 3. Which I admit, I've been avoiding, I don't want to work there. The pay is miserable. And I've got these other opportunities that I'd rather do. It is my fall-back though. I wouldn't say no if I had nothing else. But I'd like to see how these other positions pan out first. I still haven't heard from Merry-Go-Round either...

Oh, and I almost forgot about this. I qualified to take a Civil Service exam. The test is tomorrow morning. That's almost a guaranteed job if I do well, but it takes about a year to work down the list of applicants. So while it might be a guarantee, it's wouldn't be for awhile. But it's something. And it will be interesting to take the test. And if I were to get a job, I'd have a pension and in essence be working for the government. In a secretarial sort of way. It would be job security and a no-brainer job.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Another one bites the dust.

The third mouse has been caught, detained and released into the weekly garbage can. It's garbage day today, so they will be enjoying their new home at the dump. Or should I say, enjoying their forever resting place. RIP mouse family. If there are others, they will join you next week. I bought more traps and I'm setting them out tonight.

We got a little snow today. It was the windy, blowing, sticky kind of snow that stuck to the sides of the deck railings. It's kind of pretty. I think we got around 10" so far. It's still snowing. I'm happy I'm home where it's warm and dry. I ventured out earlier. I dropped Novak off at Wegmans for a long shift of work. Wegmans was and always will be busy. Snow doesn't keep these hardy Central New Yorkers at home. Hope anyone who had to be out in mess today stays safe. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Odd and Ends.

First off. about that mouse. He has a family. We're knocking them off one by one though. But we're going to need more traps. We had a BIG one this morning waiting for us. It was huge. Must have been the dad mouse. The other one was tiny and cute. This one scared me. Eric had to get rid of it. It freaked me out. I about jumped out of my jammies when I opened the cabinet door this morning.

I haven't updated anything on the job front in a week or so. I have another interview this week, with a new place. It's called Type Partners. I'm intrigued. I know very little about the place, but they've been in business for 20 years. Run by 2 local women, it's over in East Syracuse, down the street from Channel 9. I passed the resume test. They were very up front about being extremely critical of the resume, spelling, formatting, design, etc., and apparently I passed, I got an interview! This one is Thursday at 2 pm. Still waiting to hear from any of the other 3 places...

I also got my first official freelance gig! It's just creating a logo for a car dealership, but it's a start. It's for an agency in town. I've done work for them in the past, I'm happy she gave me some work again. It's been awhile. They have an in-house designer, but sometimes he's swamped or gets a 'designers-block', so they call me. Eric does all their video productions and they love him. Hopefully I can get some more work from them soon.

Also this past week, as many of you know already, probably all of you, Liverpool XC got to go to Nationals again in Oregon. This time they made a much better showing. They came in 4th overall. And were SO close to the podium. But what a great couple of years for that team. They're losing most of the kids this year to graduation, so it might be awhile before Liverpool gets to go again. It's nice to see such good kids excel and be rewarded for their hard work. We're thinking one of the boys will be joining Alex in Albany next year. At least Alex is certainly hoping so! That would be awesome for Albany.

We're getting a big storm tomorrow and Wednesday. I am happy to report that I do not have to leave the house until Thursday. I cannot tell you how happy that makes me. Although I do have amazing new snow tires if I need to. I think Eric will be taking my car anyway, so it's just as well that I stay inside where it's warm and safe. The Subaru is in the garage, safely out of the elements if I need it. The Mini is still in the shop... sigh...

In other news, the Christmas tree is up. and in other bigger news, we changed up the location this year! We're throwing everyone for a loop. One child was already vocal about disliking the new location. We'll see what the other one says next week when he returns from school. I like the fact that we didn't have to move any furniture this time. and you can see the tree from every seat in the room now. It would be nicer if we could move the piano and just have the tree in the corner, but there would be nowhere for the piano to go. But the tree fits nicely there. And it's good to mix things up every now and then! To see where the tree used to live, check out a past Christmas post

Sunday, December 7, 2014

One down.

I declared war on the mouse yesterday. I opened my utensil drawer to use my plastic spatula, and someone had chewed it to pieces. I was mad. So I set out 3 new glue traps, complete with cheese.

I had a customer overnight. He put up a valiant struggle. And sadly, never got the cheese. We're not sure if he has any relatives, but the other traps are still out. Just in case.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Mouse Update

Here's Jenny "alerting" us to some activity in the cabinet. I put down some Glue Traps last night. I figured it would be easier. I will rethink that next time and go for the old fashioned trap. The mouse got stuck on the glue trap. There was an obvious struggle and evidence of loss of fur/limbs/poop/etc. Eric saw the mouse hanging upside down inside the edge of the cabinet and dishwasher opening. He went to get a container for the mouse, went back and it was gone. So now we wait for an odor. Anyone wanna come fish it out for us?? Kelly? Are you available?? I'll make you some Jell-O!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

2 Interviews. 1 Day.

Today was interesting. I had an interview in the morning and an interview in the afternoon. In between, I went to the Mansion to hang out. It was better than driving all the way home for 2 hours. It worked out very nicely.

One interview was at the NBC affiliate in Syracuse. It's not a great job, but it's a job. And it's stable and I'd have benefits. The pay is not great. But it's a job. And I could still keep looking, although I honestly think that once I get a job, I will be taking some time off from the job search. I'm burnt out. Some normalcy would be nice. And hey, if I get the job there, I will complete the circle and will have worked at every single TV station in Syracuse. Well, except the Fox affiliate. But I don't think they have much of a station to even work at. So that doesn't count.

The other job interview today was at Housing Visions for a Marketing Manager. I was hesitant about this job, but after talking with them, it really peeked my interest. I have about 95% of the skills they're looking for. And I guarantee nobody has 100% of all they want. There aren't many graphic designers who also have experience with social media, web design, event planning, marketing, and public relations. Plus all the other little things they wanted. There was a sales aspect to the job, which I know nothing about and am not interested in at all. But it really seemed like all the other things were much more important. So who knows. I had a nice rapport with the woman I interviewed with, so that was nice.

So at the moment, I have 3 good prospects. Just waiting on the next interview, or job offer, or rejection. I also have at least a half-dozen more resumes out there. And will keep putting out more as I find interesting jobs to apply for.

Monday, December 1, 2014

A Mouse in the House

We have a mouse in the house! Or an entire mouse family. They made themselves at home in the oven mitt drawer. (If anyone needs Christmas gift ideas -- some new oven mitts would be nice!)

I cleaned out the entire drawer and dumped all but one oven mitt. 

Then I looked at the cabinet under the drawer. And yeah, that needed cleaning out too. We think the mice have made their residence under the dishwasher. We're going to need some traps...