Girls with Goals

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“Career Move Mondays” – Today is Tuesday

Well, I’ve already fallen off of the blogging wagon! Yesterday was my day to discuss the triumphs and troubles in my working life. Since yesterday was President’s Day, I was super busy doing a lot of things that have nothing to do with my career. Very fitting, I know.

Anyway, I really have been busy. I’ve been applying for jobs, going to interviews, and shortly after getting turned down. The constant rejection got me thinking about what I’m really trying to accomplish in life. Why do I want a new job? Why do I dislike my current job? Why should I even care about a job?

Sadly, it all boils down to money. I need a new job because I’m not making enough money where I am now. So why would I want to go get a new job that would probably turn out to be only slightly less awful than the job I have now? To make more money.

“But money can’t buy you happiness!” you say? I agree. Money can’t buy you family, friends, love, sunshine, laughter, or an unlimited supply of red wine.

Okay, maybe the wine.

Call me materialistic if you wish, but there are a lot of things that make me happy that I can buy. Would I survive without them if I had to? Of course. Would I be unhappy without them? Maybe for a little while.

The fact of the matter is that I don’t need a career to so I can establish my self-worth by climbing a ladder the rest of my life. Some people find this intriguing, and others find it disgusting. Maybe I was meant to be a 1950’s housewife, where ideas like this are accepted and praised!

We’ll see how this all pans out. I’ll keep you updated on my hunt for a well-paying, careerless job, if such a thing even exists. Until then, I will continue to sit here at my desk with an uncomfortable smile on my face and an uncomfortable number in my bank account.

Ciao!

Florence

 

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“Career Move Mondays” – Workin’ for a livin’

“So, what do you do?”

This question is easily the most frequently asked in introductory conversations, and I hate it. From the moment you meet someone, you’re immediately judged based on what you do for a living. Which, I guess, for most people is fine. But those people probably like what they do for work.

I think a more relevant question, which would be so much better for the whole getting-to know-you phase of a conversation, is, “So, what do you wish you could do for a living?”. Because in all honesty, how many people are actually doing what they truly love to support themselves?

Off the top of my head, I can name one person that I know, and I wouldn’t exactly call him “financially fit”. Doing what you love comes with a hefty price tag. But what could be greater than getting paid (however much or little) to do something you would easily do for free?

A couple of years ago, fresh out of college, when I was stressed and depressed about figuring out what I wanted to do with my life, my boyfriend brought up a great point. He said to me, “Some people do what they love for work. You work so you can do the things you love.”

This was the best little piece of insight I’ve gotten in a long time. I shouldn’t base my self-worth on what I do at work every day. There are so many other important aspects to life.

I love travel and adventure. I love seeing new places (even if its around the corner from my house). I love trying new restaurants. I love cooking. I love hosting parties. I love DIY projects and decorating my house. I love my pets. I love spending time with my family.

Why can’t my life be summed up based on all of these things I love, rather than where I work?

I’d love to find a job where I’m happy every day and like the work I do (which isn’t the case right now). I’d like to find a job where I make enough money to support all of the things I love, my true passions (which definitely isn’t the case right now).

Throughout the “Career Move Mondays” series, I’ll share my successes and failures in the hunt for the perfect job.  And if any of you come across an opening for a traveling cook who is inspired by trying new restaurants and dishes, who hosts parties for friends, pets and family in her beautifully decorated DIY house, please send it my way!

Ciao,

Florence


This Locavore’s Dilemma(s)

Michael Pollan’s book, “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” outlines how something as simple as what we eat for dinner can have serious implications for all of us politically, economically, psychologically, and even morally. The book has inspired people all over America to change the way they eat; not just for their own health, but for the health of the earth and everyone who lives on it. And in my opinion, one of the simplest and most effective ways to change your eating habits is to become more aware of where your food is coming from: how its made, where its made, when its made, who makes it, and how all of these factors affect people, animals and the earth.

But enough about that. This blog isn’t some hippy-dippy space for me to rant about my causes. One of my biggest goals, though, is to eat fewer processed foods and really gain an understanding of where the food I eat comes from.

Eating locally is one of the easiest ways to do this. My boyfriend and I have started shopping at our local farmer’s markets. It’s amazing, really. Just this past Sunday, we bought most of our groceries for the week (fruits and veggies, meat, bread, spices, pasta, even soap!) directly from the farmer that grew them, the ranchers that raised them or the artisans that made them.  We talked to all of these people and were able to ask questions about the food, what’s in it, and where it’s from.  Try doing that at your neighborhood grocery store!

This “go local” craze seems like a walk in the park. Literally, the farmer’s market is at a park! In reality, though, it will take some serious effort to keep up this lifestyle. We went to the farmer’s market. We went to Whole Foods. We went to another local health food store. We went to our neighborhood grocery store. Then, after we got home, we went BACK to the grocery store in a mad dash, racing the countdown until dinner, to get items we had forgotten during our marathon grocery-shop! We’ll definitely need to work on our planning and organization skills to stick with this goal, because I can’t spend 3 hours grocery shopping every weekend.

Another obstacle is money. This stuff is NOT cheap. $7/lb for ground beef? But I can get it $2/lb at the grocery store! We’ve decided that we are definitely going to have to decrease the amount of meat we eat each week, which might pose a teeeeeny little problem for me: I am ALWAYS hungry. Protein is the thing that keeps me going between meals and snacks. I know there are alternative sources of protein. What are your favorites? Right now all I have are beans. Lots of beans. (And if you’re curious about why local/organic/natural foods are so much more expensive, I encourage you to watch the documentary Food, Inc.)

Now that I’ve bought all of my yummy local groceries to prepare delicious homemade meals, the HUGE question I’m asking myself is, “BUT WHAT ABOUT WHEN I WANT TO GO OUT TO EAT?!?!”. I have no delusions about my goal. I know I wont be able to eat 100% local right from the start, or even years down the road. There are restaurants around that have a focus on local foods on their menus, but what about the ones that don’t? Should I feel like a hypocrite for eating at these places? Should I feel like I’m taking a step backwards from my eating-local lifestyle?

All you locavores out there: How do you do it (while keeping yourself sane)? I’ll keep you posted on my progress (which includes a soon-to-be-built square foot garden – keep an eye out for my next post!).

Ciao,

Florence


Fortune Cookie Goals

I’m not a writer. I’m certainly not a blogger. And I’m definitely not one to share my every life moment, especially with the entirety of cyberspace! I can’t deny that I love being a part of The Life Anonymous Girls, though, and it would be rude to make Freckles maintain this blog’s awesomeness all on her own. So, here I am! Trying to add a tiny bit of awesomeness, and probably a whole lot of babbling.

There isn’t a more perfect time than New Year’s Eve to set goals. So what do I want to accomplish in 2011?

First and foremost, I want to figure out if the norm will be to say “twenty-eleven” or “two-thousand-eleven”. For the past year I’ve said “two-thousand-ten”, but I feel like part of a minority. We all need to come to a consensus here.

The rest of my goals, like most people’s, can be outlined using fortune cookie messages. I save ALL of my fortunes, mostly because they all seem to suit my life perfectly! Yes, I know they are made to suite everyone’s lives perfectly, but whatever. At least I don’t read a daily horoscope.

Here are my top three fortunes from this year:

1. “Your many hidden talents will become obvious to those around you.”
Great! If any of you are aware of any hidden talents I have, please let me know. I’m at a point in my life, like most any other girl my age, where I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing. I’m just floating through life hoping my true calling will magically present itself to me. I’m not delusional; I know this wont come easily. But in two-thousand-eleven, I want to poke and prod myself (metaphorically!) and really try to figure out what my talents are and how to apply them to a career, hobby, charity, etc… How does one release secret, hidden talents?

2. “You will make a change for the better before the end of the year.”
Not gonna lie, I was banking on this one before the end of 2010. In my head, this fortune applied to getting a new job. Now, I don’t HATE my job, but I certainly don’t love it. It’s been great for the past (almost) two years. I’ve learned a lot and had a ton of fun. But, I’ve outgrown my training wheels and need to take them off before I get stuck riding with them forever. If I don’t have a new job by this time next year, it better be because I won the Millionaire Raffle, invested my winnings wisely and am retired.

3. “You will always be surrounded by true friends.”
This is always a toughie. My whole life, I’ve made an effort to only surround myself with genuine people who make a positive difference in my life. I really don’t even bother with people who don’t live up to a pretty high standard I’ve created over the years. For the most part, this has worked for me. After all, quality is more important than quantity! I love my friends and there isn’t a single one I would ever want to lose or replace. Throughout the coming year, I will make a solid effort to nurture these friendships to keep them going strong. And just maybe, hopefully, I’ll meet someone new who fits my stringent friendship requirements!

Happy New Year, everyone! Here’s to a great 2011 (twenty-eleven,
or two-thousand-eleven… gahh!)!

Ciao,
Florence