Howdy!

Welcome…I’m so glad you stopped by.  As the title of the blog states, I am an omnivore (because meat and carbs are good), a culinarian (because I am happiest cooking and baking) and a sports devotee (because I am second happiest watching sports).

I also knit (scarves only), color (it’s all the rage) and spend far too much time on Pinterest (don’t we all).

Thanks for checking me out and don’t forget to follow me across social media.

 

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My Love of the Ellipses…

I can’t believe it’s already been six weeks since I posted…time sure does fly…sorta…

Before I go any further, I need to make a confession…I love ellipses…I mean, seriously love them.  I use them when I text, tweet and clearly when I blog.  I am not sure why I love them but I feel like they capture an element of my speech pattern like no other piece of punctuation.

I started thinking about this a few weeks ago.  I started a temporary job at a call center for a newspaper publishing company.  The company publishes 46 papers in 22 states and the call center has about 65 employees that handle all of customer calls.  These calls include missed newspapers, newspapers in the wrong location, billing issues, cancelling accounts or just general complaints.  It has been a particularly busy time, with long wait times for customers (like coming in the office at 9 am and seeing 75 calls waiting in the que).  This is due to the fact that a rate increase that was supposed to be staggered over several months was levied across the board to all 3 million subscribers…with invoices being mailed out to ALL of them.  This caused some VERY angry people and lots of calls.  So during my week of training, I would listen to how other Customer Service Representatives (CSRs) would speak.  Some were really good at placating a customer and working hard to resolve their issues.  Others…not so much.  There is one guy who ends every sentence with an uptick inflection, causing every sentence to sound like a question.  There is another woman whose voice is very high pitched.  She seems to have a large number of callers who are yelling at her, which has made me wonder if there is something about the pitch of her voice that is creating a level of disharmony from the start (maybe some aspiring student can conduct some research and let me know).

Anyway, this all led me to think about how I speak, my pitch and tone, and my use of punctuation.  I use emojis when I text and tweet but anyone who has received a text from me will notice the use of ellipses.  I told a friend that if she received a text from me and there were no ellipses, it might be an impostor (a long story, which I will talk about another time).

So why am I rambling about punctuation and my ever-so-exciting job?  It’s because I want to…and I can.  This blog started in one direction…I wanted to blog about food and recipes and maybe some sports thrown in.  However, I have decided to let it organically evolve.  There are so many things that I want to talk about and for now, this is my forum.   It may not always make sense, but then, neither do I!

A Bit of Honesty

About a six weeks ago, I decided that I wanted to start a blog.  I made a post or two and then I waited…and waited…and waited.  I waited for everything to be perfect…the right subject, the right photos, the right…everything.  I followed other bloggers, content creators, and organizations on Twitter and started thinking about honing my brand, deciding on what topics to blog about, monetizing the blog, working with sponsors, and the list goes on and on…

But I came across two things that spoke to my core.  The first was a comment by Mayim Bialik (@missmayim) from the BlogHer Conference (check out the full text here) in Los Angeles where she said, “Don’t be afraid to tell the truth.” The second was a post on Skirtingtherules.com by Robyn Moreno.  She’s quoted as saying, “I believe the most powerful feminine strength that helps women get ahead is our ability to build communities.  To succeed, you need to find your tribe: a group of women or a board of advisors.”

So I decided it’s time for some honesty.  I have been living in a bit of a fog for the last several months and while there is still a bit of a haze, I am making decisions on moving my life forward.  Several years ago, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder.  It is a chronic condition that I treat with medication and therapy.  Most of the time, I am able to function.  However, four months ago, I was so severely depressed and anxious that I attempted suicide.  Fortunately, I was able to get treatment and am now focusing on my mental health and well-being.

This is a complete 180° from the way I have functioned almost my entire life.  For the first time, I am making decisions based on what is best for me.  I never realized how many decisions I made based on what other people wanted (family, friends, bosses, co-workers, Facebook).  I am still coming to terms with what this means for my relationships with all the people in my life.  I had become accustomed to ignoring the signs that I was taking on too much…ignoring the flashing red light when I was reaching my limits, physically, emotionally and mentally.

Now, I listen to my body more.  I pay attention to when I’m tired.  I say no…and mean it.  I am taking the time to decide what I really want to do with the rest of my life…what it means for me to be happy, satisfied and successful…on my terms.

Which leads me to the second comment.  Robyn Moreno used the words “tribe”, “board of advisors”, and “dream team” to describe people who can help someone achieve their dream.  Before simply assuming I was clear on the definitions of each word, I took the time to gather the appropriate definitions.  A tribe is a group of people with strong common interests.   A board of advisors is a group of people who provide strategic business counsel.  A dream team is a group of people of the highest ability working together towards one goal.  So what does all of this mean?  Well, Robyn Moreno suggests these five individuals could be a mentor, a friend, a connector, an idol, and a caretaker.

I spent some time thinking about who these people are in my life.  Do I have them?  If I don’t, how would I get them?  Are they available when I need them?  Do we have quarterly meetings? Okay, perhaps too much time.  But I came up with a roadmap to help create my dream team.  I need a mentor who I respect, a friend who gives sage advice, a connector (or two) to put me in touch with the right people and a caretaker for when I get overwhelmed.   My dream team may not look like your dream team…and that’s okay!  For me, an idol and a mentor are very similar so I’m combining that person and plan to add an additional connector because I have two different groups that I want to reach.  Remember, nothing is one-size-fits-all.  (Trust me, I have thrown away many undergarments labeled such that DO NOT fit!).  Instead, tailor this idea to what works for you.  Maybe your dream team is three or four.  Maybe it’s eight or nine.  Maybe you have a mentor, an idol and a guru.  Maybe your friend is also your caretaker.  It’s up to you.

So tell me…Who is on your #SkirtedDreamTeam?

The Olympics

Can I tell you how excited I am about the Olympics?  SUPER-EXCITED!!!  I love the Olympics for a variety of reasons but mostly because they feature several of my favorite sports, including gymnastics and diving.  And leading up to the Olympics are the U.S. Olympic Trials.  During a period of time the primary sports on television are baseball (and don’t get me wrong, I LOVE baseball) and soccer (U-S-A! U-S-A!), it’s nice to have a bit of variety.  Oh, and by the way…watching the men’s diving provides some nice eye candy.

I keep reading about whether Rio is ready to host the Olympics and concerns regarding unsanitary water, serious money issues, and the Zika virus.  And I have included links to places where you can read more about it (or just do a simple internet search and you’ll find lots of information).

This is not meant to be a gloom and doom post.  As most of the articles I’ve read seem to point out, each city that hosts the Olympics has had its share of problems (although perhaps not to this extent).  And I tend to be a bit of a Pollyanna in that I prefer to focus on the positives…like the divers…and those abs…

But I digress…what was the point of this? Oh, yes…the U.S. Olympic trials.  An afternoon where it’s too warm to be in the kitchen is best spent watching some of the best athletes the U.S. has to offer compete for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team.  It’s amazing to see their years of hard work and sacrifice culminate in a dream.  I love watching the joy in the eyes of the families who have sacrificed over the years to make this dream happen.  And yes, I’m the one tearing up at all the commercials (sniff…sniff) with the athletes and parents.

So I’m comfortably ensconced on my couch watching to see who are the next U.S. Olympians.