Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Morning You Sure Look Fine...


And like every other morning these days. But still I have traveling on my mind.
enough of fleetwood mac for the day! unless i put them on my itunes. right now.

I was a printmaking storm this weekend. Made 3.5 blocks and printed 6 different patterns. A is for Acron, B is for Bike. i need to finish C is for Cat. I'm moving on the the holiday propaganda today. Right after I finish, breaky, dishes and start the laundry. printmaking is awesome, using my hands to make art. I'm a sort of a factory worker at heart. It's like collecting things, sort of. but i am a collector. My current collecting obsession is countries and seas. how many oceans and seas can i stick my toes in??? So far? hmmmm, i need to keep a running total like i do my countries!

And now to the list and chores. with a few kitty cat breaks!

Monday (day one) week 3.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Flail this...

Sat. week 2.

I'm flailing. like an octopus on a bike holding an umbrella. Which happens to be my newest print that needed a title. now it has one. I have projects to finish, projects to start, lists half written and this damn computer constantly staring at me with social media, self marketing and personal communications. all. day. long.

and occasionally I think about this blog and how i was going to chronicle my unemploymentness. like that hasn't been done already. and who do i think i am to blog?! my writing skills are weak sauce. and it's sort of like when i'm drunk *I* know i'm a great dancer. well, sometimes *I* think i'm really entertaining. and if i'm that effen entertaining then my readers (the one anonymous one i have) will look past the poor grammar and spelling to the underlying entertainment factor that is my awesome personality. well, we all have our delusions.

my newest full fledged delusion is that i will actually be selected for the American Academy in Rome. http://www.aarome.org/ I can keep this delusion until they announce the winners in mid march. In the mean time, i'm hoping to be accepted into this show again. http://www.aunaturelastoria.com/
It's a good show to get into. even if it is in astoria. Although last year i almost had a break down because my piece was in the worst possible location in the gallery. all the way in the back corner of a hallway. i was offend and hurt. butt-hurt to be exact. and embarrassed. But i did have many people talk about my piece and talk to me about it. it was really well received. and that made up for the placement.

So, starting monday i'm putting myself on a diet. a time diet. a schedule if you will. some structure some focus. i really need some focus. i also need to start to writing that schedule, and make prints, and plates and lino cuts and cards and clean and cook that roast that's been in the fridge all week and clean out the chicken coop and the litter boxes and put my clothes away. side tracked. again.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Time sure does fly!

Week two, Thursday November 18 2010

I've been having a bit of a focusing problem. and not sticking to my lists. Tomorrows goal will be to be more focused. or maybe i'll start right now! i recently read that some people go as far as putting times on their to do list. Might be a good idea. Seem really regimented but I'm finding that I am wasting a lot of time doing nothing really. And I actually have things I need to do!

2 holiday art sales coming up and I need plenty of new stock is the top priority right now. I also worked on the resume a little yesterday, which was really frustrating. I can't even begin to think of my portfolio right now.

I'm also feeling unrealistic pressure to and guilt about this blog. not writing and not writing anything of interest. pity, as rosa would say.

And now back to this list making!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Week 2 day 1

http://serena-van-vranken.artistwebsites.com/index.html

that's about all i can say for today. I have books to sell and happy hours to attend!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

and on the 7th day

Today I've spent quite a bit of time on craigslist looking at jobs. I gotta say, it's pretty depressing. After making sure there where no design jobs, or art related jobs I qualify for, then I always start looking at customer service/call center jobs. The most appealing one is Netflixs. But Hillsboro? That's 2 hours on the MAX or 30 mins in the car each way.

I did discover a pretty cool website that reviews companies today! www.glassdoor.com seems like it might be pretty useful!

In other news I'm looking at a couple of artist sites and am getting some new business cards!
Ah, self promotion as an artist!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Rain Rain Go Away I want to go Outside Today!

Saturdays have always been my favorite day of the week. You get to stay up late friday night, sleep in if you want, do fun stuff all day, and stay up late again! But today I'm cold. and it's drizzly outside. Also, don't feel that great.

Insert kitty cat loving interruption here -my fluffy lovable naughty Siamese 5 year old kitten, Thai, just informed me that it was time for some mid morning holding and petting. He insists on being held like a baby being burped on my shoulder. Making it almost impossible to do anything else during that time. Good thing he's cute, I always say!

So, Saturday. Today isn't panning out to be the best one. I've had a headache since yesterday afternoon when I woke up from my nap. I was napping to prepare to go out with some lovely friends, mostly he 80's *Ranch crew. I also don't have any good tea in the house that I feel is worthy of drinking. Not the mention this newly erupted nose herp.

Nose herp you ask? Well, let me tell you. Many people get "cold sores" on their mouths or in or around their noses. I happen to get one just inside and a little outside my lower right nostril, usually during times of stress. Apparently I am under stress. It's painful and embarrassing. Looks like a scab from having a bad cold and blowing your nose too much. Most people also aquire said virus during their childhood. Dirty filthy children! But I had my first outbreak as an adult in the 90's. I thought it was impetigo Gah!!!

So, Saturday. Today I wanted my fun Saturday to include yard work! I love working in my yard! But instead I think I will finish reading Eat, Pray, Love. And start a plate for drypoint!

*The Ranch is a Roseburg/Glide icon if you lived there in the late 80's. At least in my circle of friends, but that's an entirely different story.

Friday, November 12, 2010

TGIF?

Thank god (aka the kitties) it's Friday? Friday's aren't as exciting when you haven't worked all week. Oh, excuse me, worked outside of the home all week. jet lag is getting slightly better, only awake for few mins at 2 am and then woke up for good at 5. I do have to wonder if I would have slept longer if it wasn't for a certain Siamese's cat fit that ensued at 5am. It's hard to say.

My poor friend Jen made the mistake of telling me I wasn't and didn't seem stressed. hahaha I think i verbally punched her in the gut. I guess maybe I'm stressed about strange things revolving unemployment. Maybe it's just money and insurance, or lack of both. Maybe I think I should be stressed so I'm trying to be? I have some anxiety about things, but I'm not worried. If that makes sense. I hate having to say "sorry I can't go there, i'm broke" or just not going places because I shouldn't/can't spend money on frivolous things like dinner out, shows, and booze. Though I really like them all. I need to pay my mortgage.

I often talk about living in the van. But I'm not sure I'm ready. and it's cold. We have the heat set between 57 and 60 because natural gas is actually quite expensive. The kitchen is warmer, it's cordoned off and we have a little oil filled electric heater in here. It does a great job and is fairly inexpensive to operate.

So back to Jen. I tried to describe the feelings on inadequacy, embarrassment etc. and told her and CR that I know understood why I've heard other laid off people say they can't be around the people they were working with.

It's interesting to see yourself react to something in a way you'd never had suspected. I'm shocked that I care what other people at that firm think of me. I didn't like nor have respect for most of them. I'm relieved I never have to step foot there again. But somehow I hate thinking that they think they are better then me. Do I think they are better then me? No, but they were a better fit there. They belong there, I don't.

I am thankful for what I have, I've worked hard to get it. But it's just stuff and things. I can be happy in a van if I'm doing what I want to do. I've lived too much of my life doing what I didn't want to do. 11 years of a hell marriage, many years working at places I've hated. It's time I did what I want to do. What's best for me. And to end on a corny cliche note! I'm looking forward to a new chapter in this book of my life!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fore!

Today is a chore day. a list making chore day. i dont make enough lists. some people make lists daily. and have multiple lists going at once, work, home, yard, grocery, etc. i'll be doing good to have one weekly list. that seems reasonable. I sure do like to put a line through the completed items. this is some how more satisfying then actually having the item taken care of. and typing a list isn't the same as hand writing it, being able to hold it in your hand, add to it, and alter it without having to reprint.

Today is also a focus on my art day. I need to inventory my printmaking supplies in preparation for the printmaking workshop at the end of the month, and also for a couple of upcoming "craft sales" that I am participating in. I think I will need to have a couple of print making days soon!

I also need to get a painting framed that will be hung in a wine bar over the bridge in Vancouver. Framing is a pain in the ass. Trying to decide what frame looks best, thickness, color, texture that will compliment the painting and not detract. It's really stressful, and if you ask for help from the framer then you run the risk on not agreeing with their recommendation which can end up in a awkward conversations. Once you finally find something that works, there is the hoping to the kitties you can afford it. Custom frames are expensive. Then the waiting begins. Anywhere from 2 days to 2 weeks for the frame to get to the shop and onto the painting. it's a frustrating process. and a necessary evil in some cases.

On a side note - someone needs to invent a kitty jumpsuit that they put on at night that will suck off all the loose hair and keep it off of everything else!

Side note #2 - I saw an ex coworker on the street yesterday and it seemed really awkward. It could have been me. It's so weird how being laid off can make a person embarrassed and ashamed. I understand now why when people are laid off they stay away from their working ex-coworker friends. I was secretly harboring some smugness about being able to say I made it through the Great Depression II(onward referred to as GDII) being employed. Even if a lot of it was part time and even though I really hated the place I worked and the management style and felt like a hypocrite everyday I worked there. And it made my stomach upset to walk in the place. There is something about being employed and getting a paycheck that seems to add value to a persons self-worth. It's ingrained in our society, along with a bigger better car, a large house and a flat screen TV. But I want my worth/self-worth to be about me, not things and my personal accomplishments, not the company I work for.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Day 3

day 3 of unemployment started at 2am when i awoke due to ongoing jet lag. I passed out at 8pm, i tried as hard as i could to stay up later but couldn't. so 2am came and went and i fb'ed for a bit and checked my email from bed via the iphone. frank was snoring and breathing loudly. i was frustrated and wanted to go lay on my couch. i dont have a couch. well i do, but it's in the shed and that's another story. so i got up for a second came back to bed, made frank roll over and finally fell back to sleep after 3:30. Woke up at 5, due to a kitty fit of some sort and frank got up. so i laid there crabby for a while and finally got out of bed at 6:15.
sooooo, here i am having eaten chips, guac and salsa for breaky. going to drink some tea and get ready for my morning appointment. Going to the Edith Green Wendal Wyatt Ground Breaking ceremony. or sign unveiling, not sure. the a little Team Lunch after!

Later today i will be making curry, cleaning something and doing laundry. I will also start planning some art!

I've dug up all the potatoes in the back yard and am investigating planting some winter veggies!

It's a relief to know that no one is ready this. hahaha

Post Script: I forgot to mention how difficult it is to find "affordable" health insurance. i have applied for one that is a little over $100 a month. but the deductible is $7500. Dr. visits are $35 up to 4 a year. There is a cheaper on of $58 with a $10,000 deductible. seems silly. I'm leaning toward going without. COBRA is available to me at $378.85 but when unemployment is only $332 a week. I get so little due to the previous 5 quarters of part time status. There had been a federal subsidy for COBRA but it ended on May 31st 2010.

Monday, November 8, 2010

It's Monday and I don't have a Job!

I've waited a long time for this day. Monday morning when I don't have to go to an office that makes me feel like puking. I was actually laid off Oct. 4th, about 18 hours before I flew off to Japan for a month. But this is my first Monday back unemployed.

I've actually been surprised and the gamut of emotions I've had about being laid off. Ultimately I believe my lay off was less about not having work for me (tho i dont think there was work for me) and more about not fitting in. From day two at that office I felt like I didnt' belong. But I thought it was just me. That there was something wrong with me. That i wasn't smart enough or fast enough. So I did what I could to survive there. for 5 years. 5 long years. well to be fair it was 4 years 11 months and 4 days. but who's counting.

I often felt like I was in a bad marriage. trapped by bills and social norms. I had day dreams of walking out. quitting or getting fired for asking the wrong questions. but i didn't. because i'm responsible. and didn't want the kitties to starve. I need counseling for my bad marriage and my bad job relationship.

So here i sit, still on Japan time, drinking tea. I am making a list of all those household chores I didn't have time for. Maybe a list of goals for my life and a plan to get there.

What I want for my life: To travel, paint and eat cheese. To provide for myself and my kitties. Having a little extra to do good things with. Not too much to ask for in my opinion.