november? really?

it’s hard to believe we are careening toward thanksgiving already.

things continue to be busy but good. for the last couple of weeks, the boy has worked less and slipped back to his earlier state of houseboy, which (of course) makes me giddy. i wouldn’t cry if this was the trend for the future.

the good:

we just ordered this for the greatroom. 360 degree swivel will mean this baby can play nicely with both the living room and the kitchen side. i’m very excited πŸ™‚

i thought my gerber daisy discover card was very me, but now my capital one card has a photo of jack and ponce as kittens asleep together. it’s a good thing i am no longer a compulsive spender, or these adorable credit cards would be problematic!

we are slowly making headway on prepping the garden for winter and next spring. today we got 3 bins of chicken poop from dave & rebecca so we can get fertilizer in to enrich the soil all winter.

next weekend is early friends-thanksgiving with dave & rebecca’s closest friends and then we have thanksgiving proper in seattle with our beloveds there. i am starting to feel like the karma angels are purposefully creating loving, friend-filled thanksgiving events to help wash away my original distaste for the holiday πŸ™‚

the bad:

apparently we missed one of the cats presents to us, and downstairs has the distinct smell of death in the air. we have torn apart the zen room and bedroom and found no culprit. the search continues.

credit card update

man, that felt good.

i finally got a new personal and business card lined out, and then called citibank today to cancel my two cards.

they, of course, passed me over to the Account Specialist (aka – the hard sell to keep the card). he pointed out to me that i pay my balance in full, and i am a 8 year member in good standing – does it really matter to me what the interest rate is when it doesn’t effect me?

and i had the pleasure of saying to him that i understood that the rate did not impact me because of how i choose to manage my finances, but that their practice of forcing such high interest rates on their existing customers – EVEN THE GREAT ONES – was a business practice I could not support and that I no longer wanted to do business with them.

he asked if there was anything they could do to keep my business, and i told him if i saw citibank make substantial changes to their interest rate and other customer-facing policies to be fair to their customers, i would consider coming back, but not until then.

eat that, fuckers. (not that i really matter, but still πŸ™‚

you know you are a northwest gardener when….

it’s 50 degrees with intermittent drizzle on a sunday morning, and you think to yourself, "i can move those plants and get the garden prepped so it can hit the ground running in the spring!"

i swear that this weekend, i earned my first points toward being a true northwesterner. in previous years, the southern girl in me recoiled at the idea of mucking about when the weather was already so far gone into "winter". this year, i put on silk thermal underwear, heavy cargo pants, 3 layers of torso covering (thermal, fleece and rain coat), a hat, rain boots and garden gloves and worked in the garden for 5 hours.

i am stoked πŸ™‚

also, i was thoroughly charmed by being in the garden out front and hearing the boy jeering or cheering the dallas cowboys as they played. even after all of these years, it blows my mind a little!

the principle

i think i have to fire my citibank credit cards.

even though i pay my balance in full every month, and this will never in theory affect me, i received a letter today informing me that their new interest rate will be 29.99% going forward.

that is the most obnoxious thing i have ever heard, and i don’t think i can do business with a company who would do that.

if only all mondays were like this!

radio silence for lj has continued as work has monopolized my time. but it remains ridiculously rewarding.

today, for instance, the company had it’s 50-person-all-hands-on-deck monthly business update meeting. my boss was so happy about all that my team is doing and our offsite workshop results from when i was in PA 2 weeks ago, that they asked my team to present those results at this meeting.

how you you get 5 geek boys to stand up at a full company meeting and present?

well, you make the presentation super-hero themed πŸ˜‰

it was SO MUCH FUN to present it as each team member being a superhero identity and each topic had a super villain that we were trying to defeat. i’ll spare you the geektastic details, but it was over the top, and the company loved it – so much, in fact, that these are just two of the emails that our team got once the presentation was over:

Hey Guys:
Just wanted to let you all know that I thought today’s presentation was incredible – maybe the single most important step anyone’s ever taken to change the culture of this company.
[sales guy]
I just wanted to tell all of you how much I enjoyed our business update mtg today–you ended it with a bang. Things I liked:

Just hearing from every person on the team! I’ve chatted with each of you at some point, but I loved hearing the entire team do a presentation, each person having 1-2 minutes–wonderful approach, but not too long.

Giving us a look into your creativity and insight–a lot of which applies across many groups. It was so clear you guys spent time in thoughtful brainstorming.

Giving us a sense of hope and positive forward thinking. I was sure energized after your preso.
I want to work with you guys now! You’re all awesome. πŸ™‚ I’m working on some serious SSG marketing/sales needs, and I can’t wait for you guys to bring the message to life–doing what you do best.

[sr. dir. of outsourced staffing (not her real title)]

and my boss wrapped up our presentation by acknowledging how awesome a job the team was doing and that they were leading the way he wanted the whole company to operate. it was such a huge compliment to them, and it was amazing to see them get such well-deserved recognition. yay! πŸ˜€

and perhaps the best part of today is that i successfully forced myself to step away from work for 1/2 hr to step onto my yoga mat for the first time since i started this job – 3 months ago. let’s hope i can continue to do that…my squishy belly and my aching ass (from 10-hr days of sitting) need it desperately!

a nice example of my team

i sent that pic to my team so they could see the revised belen.

my art director’s reply included the following question:

You didn’t lose any of your goddess/jedi/nerd/goth powers did you?!!!!

the best part about that question is that each of those is the highest of compliments in isolation, much less strung together πŸ™‚

and on a similar note, this amuses the hell out of me.


i feel like a million bucks.

we just had a 4 hour offsite workshop with my team.

i created an outline, and we treated each topic as something to brainstorm together, rather than me lecturing on it. i asked questions and the team collaboratively explored the answers and spinoff questions.

i wrote those topics on a flip chart – one on each page, and everyone had markers that they wrote down their contributions on each topic. those are our meeting notes.

i am so blown away by the session, how much came out of it, how their collective knowledge plays out and spins off each other. its humbling to see how smart, creative, and open these guys can be when asked to contribute, show initiative, and be part of the solution.

today, i feel like a rockstar who manages rockstars πŸ™‚ better yet, rockstars who are becoming self-aware of what they are great at and what their challenges are – and they are excited about solving those challenges.

man. how awesome is that?

i am eating THE BEST…

room service breakfast. Everything is cooked to perfection and it is a lovely start to the morning.

it’s an odd thing…being on a business trip with spending allowance.

i mean, i’m a simple girl. and i don’t eat much in the way of quantity. so it’s really bizarre to me to have $50 a day for meals, especially when many lunches and dinners are social situations where people won’t let me pay. and then i have leftovers and i might as well eat those for breakfast.

so this morning, i am trying to just enjoy the decadence of a $20 breakfast brought to my room so i can sit around in my robe and chirp to you πŸ™‚