Decisions, Decisions

May 29, 2011 § 5 Comments

My indecision is something that haunts me daily: What do I want to be when I grow up?


I like to think I’m whimsical and free-spirited, but I think I’m just non-committal. I’m coming to a point in my life when I need to decide what I am going to do with it – I just can’t decide what that might be.

I’ve eliminated some options: I don’t want to be a custodian, security guard, elementary school teacher, waitress, salesperson, prostitute, landscaper, garbage person, police person, insurance agent, or librarian. Those careers are out. Other careers I might like for a while, but I’d get tired of it quickly: nutritionist, interior designer, secretary, grant-writer, politician, college professor, stunt person, candle maker, fashion designer, museum curator, indie artist of handmade items, milliner, test driver, secret shopper, Pampered Chef consultant, baker, events planner, and manager.

Here are some things I really think I’d like to make a career out of: actor, film historian. Oh. That’s it.

Take an online career test, you say? Oh, please. Been there. Done that. I can make those say whatever I want. Phony bologna.

I was chatting with my mother this weekend and learned that my father didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life until well after he graduated from college; he travelled the world after graduation and only settled down to a job when it became absolutely necessary. My mother just graduated from nursing school in 2009, so she was over 50 before she started doing what she wanted to do. I take heart.

Maybe I’ll just go back to school to get my Master’s in film or acting or something-or-other. Maybe I’ll travel the world until I run out of money and have to get a job I hate… or be a barista (again). Maybe I’ll pray Josh becomes really rich so I can just sit around at home and putz. I’d love to become one of those ladies who lunch.

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Let the Day Begin!

May 26, 2011 § 2 Comments

I enjoy days that I can spend with Josh because he’s a pretty cool kid.

My favorite way to start any day:

1. Walk to uptown Normal with Josh

2. Get breakfast at Coffee House

3. Stop by Babbit’s Books and relieve them of a good biography

4. Walk home with coffee in hand

5. Do something creative (which may include thrifting, crafting, writing, music, or reading)

This step-by-step beginning to my day ensures a Clever Day. Are you with me? How do you like to spend your mornings?

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My Library: 10 Years from Today

May 26, 2011 § Leave a comment

The Library Board asked the Department Managers to write a paper about what we think our department (within the library) will look like in 10 years. As the Department Manager of Support Services here’s what I wrote:

The parking lot at the library is always full. Full - as in, immediately after I took this picture that spot was taken.

Support Services encompasses many aspects: building maintenance and operations, security, custodial services, and Library Board communications. Here is how I see the Library in 10 years:

Building Maintenance & Operations:

Since the library will always have a building (as a meeting place, an internet hotspot, and an educational haven) we will always need someone to maintain the building. I do believe maintenance will look different in 10 years – as the world becomes greener, I hope the library becomes a more economical building. I also hope the community looks to the library as an example of an efficient and green building.

Assuming gas prices continue to escalate, people will switch to different modes of transportation; perhaps our lack of parking will no longer be an issue as cars may be smaller. Who knows?


Since the library building of the future has technology and people in it, the library building will need security guards. Distrust will be heightened in 10 years, and the majority of the population is not going to want to just hang out in a public place with people they don’t know. Individuals and families increasingly want a good sense of security – this includes patrons and staff. The presence of a security guard may deter attempts of theft and vandalism in the future library. I do not foresee the number of security guards changing in 10 years.

Custodial Services:

With our potentially greener building, the custodians will be cleaning differently. They will use all biodegradable products and the library will become an example of recycling. The library will no doubt receive a myriad of donation books which the custodians will have to process. (This will remain a significant duty for the custodians as people de-clutter their homes of physical books.) As long as a building is in place, someone must clean it. I do not foresee the number of custodians changing in 10 years.

Library Board Communications:

The Board Packet will still exist, but all documents will be digital. The Library Boards will receive a file that reads like a book which they will download to their iPads (or what have you). Meetings will be recorded digitally and minutes will be recorded automatically. Board meetings may happen at the library – or, Board members will communicate remotely using a video call.

As long as there is innovation, there will be change. So much has changed in the past 10 years, and change will soar over the next 10. Music, movie, and game sharing will be revolutionized. Communication across the world will be instantaneous and second nature. Keyboards will be obsolete. We will no longer need to say “eBooks;” we will just say “books.”

Ultimately, people will always come to the library building whether it be to view its art collection, attend a meeting, or participate in an educational program. Books and media may all be digital and available from home, but the library is more than just books. If the library disappears from our world, it will be a conscious decision. As long as people care about their community, the library will exist.

What else do you think will be different about libraries in 10 years?

Social Media Pet Peeve

May 24, 2011 § 3 Comments

Arnold Nash: Complaints, complaints, nothing but complaints! I could do some complaining, too, you know. You ever cut your toenails? – Send Me No Flowers (1964)


I struggle with Facebook & Twitter posts which are complaints – unless they happen to be clever, in which case: thank you for turning your dire situation into a smile of wit.

Thumper: [clears throat] If you can’t say something nice… don’t say nothing at all. – Bambi (1942)

Some examples of my Social Media Pet Peeve:

I haven’t had time to get a shower today. The kids are screaming and I have a headache. I can’t wait until my husband gets home so I can have some time to myself.

Can’t stand this anymore! People just need to get things right. I hate when they won’t listen to me!

I am so offended at everyone’s political/religious opinions. They need to keep to themselves and stop posting stuff.

My child just colored all over my white wall and now I have to clean it up. I hate my life.

I’m fat and I’m ugly and everyone else I know is skinny and pretty.

No one loves me. I’m so lonely. I have nothing to do tonight.

I hate being sick. I have this and this and this wrong with me and I can’t get in to see the doctor until next August and I don’t have money to buy toothpaste. Going to play Kinect all day to try to get my mind off things.

(And, just for the record, your social media offense is even worse if your use of grammar and/or spelling reveals that you might be ignorant. Ugh. The Worst.)

Some examples of Social Media Perfections:

I just made lemon lavendar scones and my life is better because of it. Here’s the link to the recipe: [insert link]

I’m celebrating Bob Dylan’s birthday today. He’s 70! Wow!

My tights are no longer falling down, I made a dentist appointment, and I’m brewing myself some ginger tea. What a good day.

I just got the iPhone 4 and it’s amazing!

I just got the iPhone 4 and it’s kicking my tail!

Surgery went well. Pretty pumped about starting life with one hand!  If this were golf, I’d be winning – not Charlie Sheen style, either.

Food. I need food. Sustinance is the name of the game.

I’m a mess. Not in the “beautiful mess” way. In the “you dropped an omelette all over the floor then stepped in it” way. (real tweet from @baileygenine)

My children walked out the door this morning with no coat, no lunch, and no thought for their appearance. It’s OK, though, because each remembered his/her cell phone.

See? Social media perfections are attainable even if you tend to be a complainer – you just have to clean up your act a little. Take yourself less seriously. Be clever.

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Summer Clothes: To Work, To Play

May 19, 2011 § Leave a comment

Summer is upon us! Let’s create some new outfits for summer working and playing. Here are my picks:



Even summer mornings can be chilly. Don't forget your jacket!


The LBD never fails.


Make a statement. With your neck.


This straw tote will get you to work, to the market, and home again!


These espadrilles are just too comfortable not to own!



A pretty floral top is always a good idea.


We're for shorts! But, not too short, please.


This hat is my favorite thing in this post. I think I need it.


Protect those pretty peepers!


This crossbody bag is great for holding the essentials withouth being cumbersome. (Hello, Farmer's Market!)


Did you know Keds makes an organic shoes? Awesome.

Clearly, I’m pumped for summer! My inspiration board is filled with shorts, swimsuits, and sandals. My freezer is stocked with Magnum bars. My straw fedora is handy every morning.

Like what you see here but can’t afford it? No worries! Check out your local thrift stores and online auctions for items similar to these! Now, go create some clever outfits. Happy Summer!

Local Public Library. Local, I Say.

May 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

Are public libraries quickly on their way to being obsolete?


I sure hope not; that would put a lot of people (and professionals) out of a job.

One of the coolest things about a public library – correct me if I’m wrong – is that you can check stuff out for free. As technology improves and our world becomes more connected with itself, many people consider the library a waste of time. Or, worse yet, they consider it a waste of tax dollars.

Consider this: as libraries grow and change to try to meet the needs of the community, you are going to need to stay connected with your library to find out what improvements it is making for you. Continually. Check in with your library as you would check in with Facebook. What new programs do they have? What new resources do they have? What eBooks do they have? Can you download free [cool] music? Can you stream free movies? Probably. Check it out.

My favorite thing about my library is that it is local. Your local tax dollars go to your local public library to employ local people to serve you – locally. How green is that?

One of my coworkers pointed out to me yesterday that the public library is so local it can potentially become the expert on its community. A public library used to specialize in telling its community about the world; today (where global information is readily available via the internet – on my cell phone) a public library may be able to tell the world about its community.

As a hub for community events and programs the library brings in people from all walks of life: a millionaire might use the same library as someone who lives at the Salvation Army; my grandmother enjoys her library just as much as the Spanish-speaking kid next door. The library promotes integration of class, ethnicity, and generations. The diversity is a bit overwhelming!

Check out your local library. Use the resources at your fingertips! (Music, language programs, and pop culture magazines are just a few of the free online resources my library has.) You will consider yourself so clever once you rediscover its awesomeness.

How I Remember Names

May 5, 2011 § Leave a comment

If I've met you, and I remember your face, I can usually remember your name. Unless it's Spanish – which is probably a subconcious issue I need to deal with.

Thinking RFID

I really have to make an effort to remember someone's name. I most often use this trick when I'm talking with a vendor or customer service representative over the phone: I correlate their name with someone I already know.

Your name is Phoebe, just like the girl on Friends. Georgia, just like my boss. Ryan, not Bryan. Darrin, like on Bewitched. Esther, like my great-grandma. Rupert, the actor. Lennon, the singer. Ike, the president. Ima, for real? Ramses, seriously? Iona, I can only imagine what your last name is. Banjo, I'm so sorry for you. Helga, bwahaha! (I'll never forget it!)

Some parents think their so clever when they name their kids; the rest of the world has to deal with their cleverness.

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