Saturday, August 30, 2008

You're not your job. You're not how much money you have in the bank. You're not the car you drive. You're not the contents of your wallet.

Why is it that when we meet people, the first (or close to the first) thing they ask is "what do you do for a living?" or, on occasion, "What do your parents do for a living?" When we introduce ourselves to people and they ask the horrid question of "tell me a little about yourself" why is the answer always "I'm a (fill in the blank with job title here)"?

This societal ritual makes me very uncomfortable, especially because I have what people perceive to be a 'boring' job. There are disinterested nods and glazed-over expressions. The image that pops into their head is inevitably this or something very much like it:


The thing is, I love my job and I get very tired of defending it. I'm even abused for my job by OTHER ACCOUNTANTS because I chose tax as my specialty. I considered not even putting my actual job in the profile of this blog for fear of losing readers.

Should I stop introducing myself as an accountant so I don't have to deal with this problem?

"Hi, I'm Jen. I enjoy photography in all forms, decoupage, science fiction and drama shows, cult movies, indie and punk music, museums, and my newest passion, blogging. Also, I work at a Big 4 CPA firm." and then segue into a discussion of how I made my coffee table, brilliant!

... that sounds infinitely better than "I'm Jen, a tax accountant...(blank stares)... but I really love my job! It's so interesting! Really!! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, YOU JUST DON'T UNDERSTAND!!!"

Does anyone else have this or a similar problem? What do you do when faced with job judgmentalists?

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Thumbtack press

Thumbtack Press has such beautiful prints. They are so affordable too! They even do custom matting and framing for you. Budding artists can submit their own work and, if it is deemed worthy, Thumbtack Press will print and sell it for you.

I'm really liking these so far in my browsing:

Goldilocks & the Three Chairs Part I - The Intro

When I was 16, my Mom and I went to Denver to visit my cousin. We spent an entire day at the Denver Art Museum, affectionately known as the DAM (side note: that place is huge and we didn’t check to see that the impressionists [our favorites] were on the top floor and were therefore exhausted by the time we got up there). But, I digress. During our visit, we saw an exhibit of chairs. Now, I cannot find anything on what the actual exhibit was and the DAM archives don’t go all the way back to 1999 (which is incredibly irritating). So, picture this: a room full of all different types of chairs (I know, descriptive right?). Nowadays, I would think this was incredibly cool but, at 16, of course, I just made fun of it. How are chairs art? Hurhur

Mom and I were so snarky about it that it became a running joke. Chairs provided for tired patrons elsewhere in the museum became installation pieces for us to mock. “Oh, look… it’s more “art”!” hahaha. We even kept doing it for months after we returned to Prescott. “Hey, our living room is full of “art”!”

I have since discovered that chairs can, in fact, be considered art, and not in a ridiculous manner. Furniture can actually be some of the best kind of art because it is functional, affordable (in many cases), and can be displayed in one’s own home.

This concept is especially interesting for me now as I search for new chairs for my house. We are finally getting rid of our ancient faded orange lazyboy that was my grandpa’s and currently sits in my office at home. This thing is totally falling apart and has to have one of those plastic office chair mats underneath it to keep it from damaging the carpet with all its grease and its broken parts sticking out of the bottom. Mike is doing a happy dance because he has been ready to get rid of this chair for a long time. I think he would have preferred to get rid of it before moving into our house. It took me a while to do this because my grandpa’s death still seems so recent even though it has been 3 years. I am comforted in thinking that the furniture and other things that my grandpa actually made are much more important to keep than his old chair and I plan on keeping those things forever.

I also want at least one place to sit in our living room that isn’t part of our gargantuan couch. I think we would need 2 chairs – one on each side of the couch – to maximize seating with out having too much furniture in there. They would need to be small, but I think I can work with that.

And here begins my search for the perfect chair(s). Stay tuned!

**Jeez, my posts are getting needlessly verbose lately, especially for someone who loves pictures so much. I wish I was actually able to venture outside the office during the daylight hours to take some :(**

Monday, August 25, 2008

"Judy Garland is trendy?" ... "She's neo-addict retro chic!"

I don’t like to think of myself as trendy; if I see something that I like and that looks good on me or in my house, then I buy it (budget withstanding). I try not to buy things I know I’ll be throwing/giving away at the end of the season but rather go for something classic. I also remain aware of things that may be trendy but won’t look good on me. I also won’t hold back from buying things that may be trendy now but that I will love forever. For example, when the whole “skulls” thing was very Hollywood trendy after the final pirates movie came out, I totally took advantage. I love skull stuff and I loved it before it was cool, when it was actually sort of shunned; skull-wear was for only for the hard-core punk and the antisocial misfits.

The few purchases I’ve made just because they were trendy, I’ve regretted. So I started my new philosophy – buy what you like, not what everyone else likes - but if you love the trend, go with it!

That being said, I’m so lucky to be redecorating my house while blogs like decor8, decorno, and design sponge are around to help me out and find cool things I wouldn’t have found that vary widely in design and aesthetic. They also show that cookie-cutter trendy “stylish” isn’t really a desirable goal in decorating. I had never really found a pre-set design style that I clicked with – hence our house full of dark stained wood and beige without much variety or sense of cohesiveness (other than the fact that it’s cohesively boring). Now, I’ve slowly been adding modern and vintage touches and a lot more color while keeping most of our existing furniture (at least the large pieces), especially the tables my grandfather made. The vintage/modern mix lends itself to my eclectic interests and style and I’m having much more fun redecorating than I thought I could. I’m trying to keep myself from falling back into the trap of “let’s just buy this chair because it’s functional and convenient” and patiently trying to buy things that are beautiful and that we will enjoy looking at for years to come.

When it comes to wardrobe, I’m trying to pick things that will last and be classically stylish and comfortable. The fact that I basically need 2 wardrobes – 1 casual, 1 work – makes it easy to overspend on clothes. I’m also trying to buy more things that do double duty without feeling like I’m playing dress-up on the weekends. I’m thinking for fall I’ll go with some great sweaters with basic dress pants/skirts for work and the same sweaters with jeans (not skinny jeans – I am perfectly aware that my body type is NOT compatible with that trend) or over layering dresses with tights and boots for my casual look. I would just like to feel better in my clothes overall. My goal is to think “would I be totally embarrassed to post a picture of me in this outfit to wardrobe remix?” each day.

Anyone else out there have thoughts on trendiness or personal style they’d like to share?

Poster Perfection

I stumbled upon this via this today and wow, I must have some of these posters. I have always loved posters but I have struggled recently with how to use them without my house looking college dorm-ish.

I figure I mix in a few of these babies and that'll do the trick. It helps that I LOVE pop art, rock, and vintage items.

Happy Birthday Babe!

Friday night I finalized my time sheet for the week and dragged myself home, feeling like finally this incredibly long week punctuated by severe lack of sleep was over. Let's pretend that the fact that I worked all day Saturday is completely irrelevant. All I can say is thank goodness for amazon or else these never would have arrived in time for my husband's birthday, which was Friday.

We lost the format war, people, and we have finally resigned ourselves to it. Our HDDVD player has gone the way of betamax. Oh well.

Sunday was fun with much Salt Rivering and drinking (maybe too much drinking - I think it's my turn to be DD next time). Hopefully my pictures turned out well. I'm always terrified I'll lose my digital camera and dive housing on those trips but I just keep it strapped around my wrist at all times!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

I got favorited

Originally uploaded by prideofazchick

This picture was marked as a favorite today and, sadly, it is my first one to ever be favorited. I'm even more flattered that it was favorited by someone I don't know in person nor are they a "blogfriend." In regard to full disclosure, there is a 50/50 chance that Mike actually took this picture... but the picniking is all me.

So, I'm a flickr neophyte. I've had an account for a while and I've always thought "hey, it's pretty cool that I can store some of my photos on here." Lately, however, I've discovered that it's so much more than that.

You can go on scavenger hunts, compete in contests, upload photos to a specifically-themed group pool, explore specific photographic interests - macro, film, polaroid, lomography, etc.... I can go on and on.

It's a great way to see some really cool photos, "meet" other photographers, and share your work with others.

And maybe, just maybe, you can be favorited too.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

If you work in a job with no busy season... treasure it

There is very little that's worse than hunching over a computer in a rapidly warming and half-deserted office after hours on very little sleep. Especially when all you want is to go home and see your family...

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

No thanks...


I'd rather not pay $7,000+ for a box of metal that I beat with a sledgehammer into a chair-like shape.

Friday, August 15, 2008

this blog is so incredibly hilarious

check it out

Do they also have a skinny kid with glasses locked in a cupboard under their stairs?

Little fat boy: Moooom?
Very fat mom: Yes, sweetie?
Little fat boy: I can't wait until grandma dies so I can have a cat.
Outrageously fat dad: He's so creative, isn't he? (pats fat boy on the head)

--7 Train

Overheard by:
via Overheard in New York, Aug 14, 2008

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Women who make TV worth watching: Rachel Griffiths

edit: Note that I have corrected my GLARING grammatical error in the title and its related acronym. OOPS!

Ok the title of this post is incredibly long and, since I think I want to make this a regular segment I'll shorten it to 'wwmTVww' from now on. Kinda trips off the tongue, dontcha think? Maybe more like trips, falls, attempts to get up while everyone is staring, blushes, trips again, eventually gets up and runs away crying.


Anyway, Rachel Griffiths. She is splendid. She managed to portray such an amazing character in Six Feet Under that remained relevant and captivating without even being a part of the Fisher immediate family. She is also a shining star in the overdramatic Brothers and Sisters. In truth, she is the only reason why I even watch that show. She has the incredible ability avoid being typecast in her roll as Brenda on 6FU. Her transition to Sarah is so fluid, it seems that it could not possible be the same actress. How could she so realistically portray a messed up sex addict in love with the most unavailable guy on earth one minute and then a CEO and mother of two the next? Plus, she is beautiful in a not incredibly obvious and generic sort of way. That's the best kind of beautiful in my book!

She is so incredible, it is making me want to watch Six Feet Under all over again. I suggest you do the same.

Well, you should've called. I wouldn't have answered, but you coulda left a message, which I would've quickly erased.

So far, I give this show a "highly entertaining" rating. It is just crass enough to make it interesting but not so crass as to be annoying.

I'm thoroughly enjoying it so far and I can't wait until the second half of the first season comes via Netflix. Hopefully I will have time to watch it. Though for TV, I always make time.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Marching Band is a sickness

It gets into your bloodstream and stays there FOREVER.

I was listening to music earlier and Psycho Killer by the Talking Heads was playing and "1, 2, step and close" went through my head right before the "Ai yi yi yi" part.



Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address

Shopping for school supplies was always one of my favorite things to do in August, even in college. There was nothing like brand new pens, pencils, and notebooks to assure me that this year I was going to be more organized, more driven, and get really, really good grades. Of course, all that never really happened, but the hope and potential was still there. Mostly, school supply shopping was a prelude to seeing all my friends on a regular basis and getting back to band, orchestra, youth & government, and all of my other extracurriculars.
There's just something about this time of year that makes me want to go shopping for them. Maybe I can talk my brother into letting me go with him this weekend when I help him move into his apartment.
Anyone else get nostalgic this time of year?

Monday, August 11, 2008

when in doubt, yellow

Wait, where was this guy when I did my original post on kitchen light fixtures? I even remember looking at it before and disregarding it for some unknown, godforsaken reason. Regardless, I think we have a winner.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

how do I explain...

... how I love a series of books so much that the just the preview for the adapted movie makes me (almost) cry?

The answer is probably that I don't have to; you either get it or you don't.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The list is life

I've been thinking about that checklist of milestones that's in the back of my mind that I call up every once in a while to check things off. Do other people have that list? I am a total listmaker - I tend to make lots of lists for work, chores, etc. because basically I've learned that I will completely forget to do things when they're not on a list. It's pretty much the only way I can function in the real world. On the other hand, sometimes I completely ignore these lists after I make them. I also have a strange habit of adding things to my lists just so I can cross them off; it gives me a weird sense of accomplishment. I think this applies to my life list too.

I have also been considering the fluidity of this "life list." For one thing "get married" was never on mine, ever. Then, I realized that I did want to get married... to Mike. Circumstances in one's life and the way one one feels about things change. We are not the same people we were in high school or college. People change and no amount of posturing and adamance about how we will always be this way will alter that. So, I've added "get married" to my mental list and then checked it off.

"Have Children" was never on my list and still is not. "Don't have children" isn't on there either, though. At this point in my life, I cannot fathom having to take care of another human being for the next 18 years and, to be completely honest, the thought stresses me out to no end. I can barely get myself out of the house in the morning with my hair done and clean clothes on and I like being able to take random weekend trips, go see movies on a whim, make impulse purchases, and let's not even get started on how much I work during the busy seasons.

"Get a good job I actually like" can be checked off as well. I, like most other CPAs, don't plan to be in public accounting for the rest of my working days, but I do like it a lot right now. I have a career that challenges me and the challenge is why I switched my major to accounting in undergrad and went for the tax masters in the first place. When I first went to college, however, accounting was not where I saw myself ending up (see that... the fluidity again!).

Other things:
Survive wedding planning...check
Pass CPA Exam...check

I used to have things like "write a book" on my list. I think that I'll leave that to Meghan, though. I'll just be that girl - "oh yeah, I used to be friends with that author and then she got famous and stopped talking to me." :-)

Things that are coming up on the list:
1) Move into/build my "dream house" - the house that I actually want to live in for the rest of my life or at least, for the foreseeable future. That is not the house we live in now, though I do like it. The things that the dream house must contain comprise an entirely separate list.

2) Travel...a lot - I have been to Mexico, Japan, and the Caribbean and that's it for travel outside of the states. I didn't even have a passport until after I graduated from college. I love to travel and I'm ready to go! Mike and I want to do a European backpacking trip, maybe with my cousins, Jackie and Liz. My cousin Beth and I plan to go to Prince Edward Island because we are total Anne of Green Gables freaks. Oh yeah, we're doing the Green Gables museum, the Anne Tea, and a tour, the whole shebang. (nerds!). There are a million other places I would love to go, fueled by all the honeymoon research we did.

3) Watch those movies I've always meant to see.

4) Read the books I've always meant to read.

5) Get a dog!

Anyone else out there have a life list? Care to share a few things that are on it?

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Fear of numbers

I think that I'm developing this as the week goes on.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

goodreads review - me & mr. darcy

I finally got around to doing a mini book review on goodreads. I chose a book I read a while ago because I had strong feelings about it... meaning I didn't really like it. I don't pretend to know more than anyone else about books and would never proclaim myself a reviewer extraordinare but it is kinda fun to do.

I also found out you can blog your reviews, which is pretty cool, so here is mine:

Me and Mr. Darcy: A Novel Me and Mr. Darcy: A Novel by Alexandra Potter

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars

Here's the thing, I like Pride and Prejudice quite a lot. I have read the book, seen the movie and watched the miniseries multiple times. I even enjoy attempts at subtly rehashing the storyline like Bridget Jones' Diary. The key word here is "subtly." Someone who is such a huge fan of Jane Austen that they would go on a themed tour while re-reading Pride & Prejudice for the dozenth time, like the main character in this book, would obviously recognize the blatant parallels to the story present in her own life. Did she not learn from the mistakes and misunderstandings of Elizabeth Bennett? The completely unrealistic inner-monologue of such an enthusiastically self-proclaimed Austen fan weakens the plot of this book. There are, however, some funny antics, resulting in a mildly entertaining novel. I think that the author has some interesting storytelling abilities but she should steer clear of those that have already been told, and told better.

My verdict:

If you love Jane Austen – do not read this book

If you have never read P&P but plan to some day – do not read this book

Anyone else – if you like chick lit, who knows, you may enjoy it

View all my reviews.

Free Blog Counter