Archive | February, 2009

My bag is packed

25 Feb

my passport is in my purse and my spanish-english dictionary is ready to get some good use out of it.  Tomorrow we take the chance of the airplane gods and hope we get on our flights to Santiago, Chile. Getting to DFW looks good. It is the flight to Chile that looks tight. So we shall see. 

I am ready to get out of here for a bit….

Our next adventure

18 Feb

 

chileshow.gif (33106 bytes)

 

On February 25th Eli and I are heading to Chile. We’ve been searching for an ideal time for us to make the trip and after much thought and consideration, we decided there is no time like the present. Especially since we can take advantage of our flight benefits, a free place to stay and well, I am not pregnant. The reason for choosing to visit Chile is because Eli spent  a year living abroad in Chile and traveling South America. Our plan is to day trip to Santiago, Valparaiso and Vina Del Mar. We will only be there for a handful of days since we lose a couple of days due to travel. This will certainly be the farthest I’ve ever traveled.  

Now, I am going through my summer clothes to figure out what to pack and working on my spanish! 

Can’t wait to tell you all about this adventure!

Seattle

10 Feb

The trip to Seattle was successful. I had my all company meeting on Friday and then dinner and drinks afterwards. The meeting was very positive. I am proud of upper management not dwelling on the “tough economic” times that we are in. Instead there were messages of positiveness and for us to go and kick butt. Passion and hustle were the two themes that resonated the most for me.  I figure if I made it through the dot.com bust while I was in advertising, I can make it through this as a recruiter.

The best part of the weekend was hanging my sister in law. I only saw my brother for 3 hours on Saturday night. This was due to him “playing army” as my SIL likes to call it. What it is really, is that he had reserve duty. Luckily he can come home while he is on his “one weekend a month” drill.

We spent some great QT together. Learned about each other and I got to learn a heck of a lot about my brother. Boy do I give this girl props! I did not realize what a complex man my brother has become.  My hope is that through her I can start to develop the relationship that he and I were meant to have. Amy fully knows my intentions and she supports them a 100%.  What I really admire about her, is that she did not sugar coat the up hill climb I have in order to earn my brother’s trust.  She spoke the truth and for only being in the family such a short time, I think that kicks ass!

For the meeting we stay at a great remote resort called Suncadia. I will sum it up in one word, BEAUTIFUL!  Here is a picture I took from inside the main lobby.

hpim2845

I went to jail today

1 Feb

Not because I did anything wrong.  Although, if you read the post below, number 8 might suggest otherwise.  It was quite the opposite, I went to volunteer my time and I did something very rewarding.

Last month I was cruising the Internet looking for opportunities to volunteer my time in working with kids.  Unfortunately, with my work schedule  coupled  with a commute time, it left very little opportunities to do anything during the week. Until I found this opportunity.  It is “Start with a Story”.  It is put on by the Alameda County Library.  It is a program designed for kids from the ages 1-16 to help them get excited about reading. It is held at two of the county detention centers here in the bay area. The detention center I went to today was in Oakland. Not too far from where we live. The object is to provide story time, family literacy and free books for these kids while they are waiting to visit  a family member (s) in the county jail. Most of the kids are neglected during the wait time to visit a family member(s).

I will admit, at first I felt like a fish out of water. I was way early in my arrival so nothing was set up nor were any of the other volunteers there.  I walked in and just felt so weird. About 15 minutes later, the other girl that was a volunteer showed up and I was quickly given the run down on how things work. It wasn’t more then 5 minutes later when kids came right over to our table. Bright eyed and excited about all the books we had to offer. My first encounter was a cute little girl named Michelle. We picked out a book about Benjamin Button and she was so eager to have me read to her. My heart instantly melted.  After that, I instantly felt at ease. 

Another cute little girl came up to the table. She was a doll. So expressive and just smiling. I started talking to her and asked her how old she was. She told me 5. I found a book about the ABC’s . I asked her if she would like me to read to her and she said yes.  When we sat down and I showed her the cover of the book and asked her to tell me what the letters were (A,B, C).  While I was listening to her, the thought crossed my mind that she spoke Spanish.  So I asked her in Spanish, Que es eso? ( what is this?) As I pointed to a cat. She answered, GATO! which is cat in Spanish. Right then it changed the dynamic for me. Not only was I reading with a child but I was using another language to communicate with her. I’ve been trying to beef up my Spanish for awhile now. I was racking my brain trying to pull out Spanish phrases and words to communicate with this little girl. It was mind blowing and so darn cute at the same time.  I think at one point she was correcting me in how I phrased something.  As one my friends put it today when I was telling her about my experience, I got to do something good while getting a Spanish lesson at the same time. The three hours I was there this morning went so fast. I even had the chance to have a child read to me.

If you are looking to volunteer. I highly suggest checking out voluneer.org That is how I found this opportunity. I also suggest if you are not hearing back to continue to call and email the contact person at the non-profit. These folks are spread so thin and funding is so low, more so now with the tough economic times we are currently experiencing.  I am so  happy that I continued to be persistent because I wouldn’t have given my time today.  I know the kids and the program were very appreciative.  I am definitely looking forward to giving more of my time in helping these kids get excited about reading.