Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I pick up things in strange places

I network. Infrequently, but I do it (or try to do it) I'm terrible at it.

Many of my networking situations are in events and venues where everyone has an end goal - make a sale, find a job, get that next big contact or contract, meet a guy/girl. I typically don't have the same end goal(s).

I work from home. My socialization these days involves mom + kid dates. I love them, but need more. My attendance at networking events is strictly to keep my toe in the water. Plus it always was and always will be WHO you know, rather than WHAT you know so I'd better know some people, just in case...

So anyway, my networking attendance if becoming forced. Awkward.

I had business cards made up (on a recommendation). They have my name, my Twitter account a few ways to reach me, mostly electronic. People desperately grasp for a title, my job, a role when they meet me.

What do you do?
Why are you here?

I struggle with answers. I'm not there to promote a product or my company. I'm not really there to promote me. I have no agenda. It's odd to most people.

Add to that my 'job' is a catch all. Literally. I don't have a career or even a job, per se. Every day is different than the one before. I could be an office clerk or a purchasing agent and tomorrow I'm managing a portion of a client's technology implementation. My spectrum is large and diverse.

And I don't know what I want to be when I grow up. I'm not even sure yet that I want to grow up.

And I'm not really looking for a new job, but I'm not closed off to one either. But it needs the flexibility that I have now.   Work from home, six weeks vacation, ability to use my lunch hours to volunteer at the school or for the Cub Scouts. ...

And I'd really rather work for myself or with a small group starting a business for my next gig. I'm kind of tired of toiling for "the man."

So it's a challenge.

I guess that's why when I read this article from BNET today (, it really struck a nerve (in a good way). I'm going to have to keep this in mind next week when I go to my next networking event.

Monday, July 18, 2011

on the road to tomorrow ...

On the road to tomorrow I am working on saving more money. It's amazing to me how many things are so simple (and cheap) to make yet we don't anymore. We opt to purchase 'ready made' at ten times the price. Ready made full of sugar and chemicals and additives.

Today I made yogurt for the first time. After months of putting off buying a yogurt maker ($50) I found a recipe using the crock pot. Ten hours later, I have yogurt. It's runny, more like kefir. But I like kefir so I'm fine with that. It's in the fridge now, we'll see how it sets up. And I have some of the batch in a strainer with paper towel to see if that helps thicken.

No colorings. No sugar. Just yummy goodness

on the hunt for more ways to save cash. ...

Sunday, July 17, 2011


As I prepare for a major life change, which will include a move and less available finances, I'm spending inordinate amounts of time searching the web for information - DIY, recipes, etc. Anything that will allow me to spend less money as well as provide teaching opportunities to my young son. 

Just this week we've found two bread recipes we like (my son previously would eat only one type of bread - the price of which went from $2.50 a loaf to $4.69 a loaf in the past month). 

Today I'm going to purchase supplies for homemade yogurt in a crock pot. (organic milk and yogurt starter) I've been researching this choice for awhile now, but after paying $10 yesterday for yogurt that will last us four days, I've finally decided to move forward with the plan. 

My goals? spend less money (and time) shopping. Spend more time with my son. Be as local and sustainable as possible. I'm joining the game a little late compared to many of my friends, but that allows me the opportunity to learn from them (and skip potentially costly mistakes they made).

The irony? As I search the web for DIY tips, I find NUMEROUS books. Volumes - written by other frugal people. And I have to wonder, how many people have BOUGHT these books (rather than trade or borrow from the library). Each of the people whose books I found truly interesting have sold enough books that they have left their former employers (mostly corporate curmudgeons). 

I find it interesting that people buy these books whose lesson is to inform people how to not waste money - essentially saying 'here's a book to tell you that you were stupid to waste your money buying this book.' 

Of course, the books do provide many many tips that will save enough money to 'repay' yourself for buying the book, but a small amount of research would also show that most of the good authors also have free blogs - that contain all of the information contained in their books. 


Saturday, July 9, 2011

Summer Breezes

Summer is a bundle of contradictions...

we love the sun, but hate the sun burn (or worse) that comes with it. We love the warmth, but not the heat. I could go on, but my train of thought tonight was to revel in how delightful summer breezes feel when they blow like a kiss across sunburned skin. The fiery tingling is both painful and pleasant at the same time. A feeling you wish for in the winter when the snow is nipping at your heels. Despite the irritation and the thick balm, I'm enjoying the sensation.

(But I'll wear sunscreen tomorrow)