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Friday, June 11, 2010

An Abundant Weekend


I am so excited about the weekend! Tonight, the Polar Bear and I are headed to see Coba (Collective of Black Artists), a dance troupe from Toronto. We get tickets at 50% because of the connetion with The Cultural Arts Studio School Of Afro-Caribbean Dance (I've still got to post some pics from our recital - it was AWESOME!)

Then I'll probably turn it in early (late night with the girls last evening. We had such a great potluck....but we ordered pizza instead:)

On Saturday, the girls and I are having a meeting to continue planning for the What to Wear Ottawa! Fashion Showcase (details are coming......along with a blog!). It's such fun to catch up with those ladies. They're such a hoot!


Then later in the evening I'm running my first 10K. From sofa to street. Hope I don't get to comfy strolling:)

Got a brunch on the agenda for Sunday, and lots of relaxing....and balancing!

Why are you still in front of a computer?!!?!!?!! An awesome weekend awaits!

Hotel service - Caution when booking!


Part of my job is making arrangments for guest rooms and meeting space for small gatherings that our program organizes. We're working on one in Milwaukee, WI for June, and we're pulling together a meeting in Charlotte, NC for September of later this year (yay!). I'm overexcited because it's so close to home....YIPPEE!!!

Usually we need 20 guest rooms and a meeting space (with a window!), and lately, I've become astonished at how carelessly some of these hotel folks treat my customer service.
  • With one hotel, I was quoted a fantastic rate! I was ready to get the contract going, till I got a phone call telling me that the sales mananger was looking at the wrong year when she gave me the estimates!!!!
  • In some cases, attendees of our meeting like to stay a day or two later. With a hotel that we had booked an event in (and paid a heavy deposit for), I asked if our contracted rate could be extended to the extra nights that an attendee would be staying. AFTER A WEEK, I called the sales manager back, and after stalling again, she gets back to me with a solid NO. Nice, huh?
  • In the exact same case as above, I've been asking for a total cost for our contract. I've been in touch with these folks for 4 months. REALLY?

I just wonder why, in cases where money is being handled, professionals don't act...well, professionally! What are folks focusing on if it's not DETAILS? Booking rooms is not an added part of these people's jobs. IT IS THEIR JOB! Why do I find myself following up with them, correcting their numbers, confirming their space for my needs? Can I get a part of their paycheck, please (or at least a discount on some room service!)?

ciao y'all!

a

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Balancing Acts - A Haiku!


Just got a haiku from the lovely and talented Kerry Chan (hope you're balancing things well in Toronto, girl!)
balancing is hard.
working, playing, sleeping. wow!
all are important
ciao y'all!
a

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

51 Gigs.... #1 An Author



I'm in Canada on a 2 year work visa at Community Foundations of Canada, and while I absolutely am in love with my work, I'm a year into the contract, which means that at this point in 2011, I just may find myself in another country, job, health plan, and retirement account (and I just got it set up here...ah well, at least it's one little egg getting bigger :>)

So I'm putting together some inspirational ideas for jobs/careers/gigs that could give me the lifestyle, paycheck, and amenities that I really want in the next big thing. More important that those, though, I want a day, not of working, but of doing what I love and enjoying the blessing of making a living off of it.

The first to come to mind is an author, perhaps of self-help books. One of my faves is Sark. I love the way that she has cultivated a lucrative business of writing, speaking, and sharing from her life's experiences. While I hope to collect a lot more experiences to write about in the coming years, compiling life's learnings in a way that's helpful to others...that could be a delightful gig!
Some ideas to get me going:
  • Continue journaling, but with more detail, content, and exploration of my experiences (and what they mean to me)
  • Park ideas right here at the Wonderland
  • Become familiar with how to aggrandize the book into an actual business
  • Research publishers
  • Share my idea with family, friends, and loved ones (and put the energy of believing in it behind it!)

ciao y'all!

a

Balancing Acts - Planning Relaxation


In building on June's theme of balance, I want to explore how folks relax. I've always battled with a relaxed state of mind....it takes too much to achieve!

When I go to yoga, I get stressed because the poses take too long, the other sounds of the gym are too imposing, and the mats that we use are probably germ ridden and disgusting.

When I try to mediate at home, the contruction outside is sooooo noisy and there are a ton of other things on my TODO list that I have to cross off.

When I try to relax after work, I rush through other things (workouts, making dinner, doing laundry) just to relax, and I get myself all worked up because I don't think I'll have enough time to relax!

I feel like I have to go somewhere (the nearby Canal for a walk is an example), buy something (candles or a eucalyptus plant maybe?), or go to a class (who wants to pay $10 for an hour of Tai Chi!?!?!?!?).

So my thinking is to build relaxation into moments, not activities. I'm not quite sure how to accomplish this, so your thoughts and practices are more than welcome! I have a few ideas, and I'm hoping to keep this list growing!!!

  • At some appointed time (here I go planning again! But this could be an exception), stop whatever I'm doing, and do a breathing and meditation exercise for a few minutes.
  • I'm situated at a desk for the day job, and I've discovered that taking breaks throughout the day gives me a much needed mental break. I usually just walk up and down a few flights of stairs, which gets my body working and heart beat pumping. It's not relaxing as much as it is rejuvenating, but it's all part of the cycle:)
  • Drinking water - but not ice cold water....it's soothing somehow.
  • Hearing water, too....I'm just not sure a fountain would work so well in my office, but somebody brilliant at Youtube has solved that problem! Check it out - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDEn9P9_S-s. Love this!
  • Hug someone. Just the exchange of friendly, warm, and soothing energy with another person is so relaxing. This is a pose I can hold on to for a while!

Any other ideas? Please do share!

ciao y'all!

a

Monday, June 7, 2010

What do you wear, Ottawa?



I've built like an hour into my morning routine just to deal with the disappointment of not having anything to wear.


The closet is packed - so are the drawers and corners where I stuff unwanted (but at some point, loved and highly regarded) clothes, belts, socks, necklaces, sweaters, scarves, etc.

Really, I have no excuse...except that some mornings, I just can't pull it together.


Soooooooo..........
my girls and I are putting together a style showcase in September. Ideas and structure are still coming together, but keep an ear to the ground.....will be sending more info soon.

ciao for now!
a

June topic - bAlanCe

I've put a lot of thought into it, and while the themes of love, dance, family, and fathers were on my radar as topics for June, the theme of BALANCE has resonated heavily with me lately, and I think it could be worth exploring this month.

Topics will range diversely...this is what I'm mapping out so far...
  • Balancing spiritual energy - how much we invite God into the mix
  • Balancing time - what we spend our time doing
  • Balancing attention - who we spend our time with
  • Balancing efforts - what we direct our actions towards
  • Balancing wellness - how we stabalize a healthy body (diet, exercise, spa treatments, doctor's visits)
  • Balancing family - how we encourage, strengthen, energize, and worry about our family
  • Balance in the bank account - how we balance our money (I'll pull from learnings collected from the May focus on Money for that :)
  • Balancing talents - what we want to improve, should improve, and what we can cross off our lists

I'm excited to build on what I've been learning over the past and what I'm working to become...it'll take time, but sharing is part of the journey!

Ciao y'all!

a

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