Monday, July 12, 2010

Café? or Kaffee?

I got the job at the coffee shop! I start the 23rd of this month, at least filling out paperwork. I'm not sure what my schedule will look like yet. I'm hoping to get mostly opening shifts so that my nights and most of my afternoons will still be free, but we'll see how it ends up working, exactly.

I think in the meantime, I'm going to start working on freelance. I'm not entirely sure what I would be getting myself into yet, and so I'm sort of just researching what's possible and what's out there. I never thought I'd be an independent creative (freelancing designer) until after I'd had at least 5 years of experience under my belt somewhere else.

Oh, btw, two new things you should check out.

One, I finally broke down and got a Twitter account, if for no other reason that it gives me more exposure.

Two, I have a LinkedIn account. I'm not really sure who all is on LinkedIn that I know, but I'd love to have more connections.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Doomed to be a Barista with a Failing Art Career

I still haven't heard back about the job at Koch, and considering it's Saturday, I'm beginning to wonder if indeed this is bad news. I'm really not qualified for the position, and I think they know that, but I'm hoping I'm spunky enough and nice enough to get the job.

Otherwise, I guess I'll just work as a barista. Really, I guess it wouldn't be so bad. I could just open my own freelancing graphic design firm. I'm not sure that I know enough about business, though. It seems like there are two kinds of freelancers. 

Freelancer 1:

Jumps into freelancing without learning about any business practice, accounting practice, or billing practice first. They buy a computer and software after quitting their first graphic design job in a bitter rage and jump straight into freelancing. They hand out business cards to every privately owned store in town and hope to have someone that needs some posters designed. They learn about getting things printed and bidding jobs as they need to. Clients are generally happy, unless they aren't. Most of these types can't afford to turn down even the crappiest projects.

Freelancer 2:

The kind of person that works for ten years, building an amazing portfolio, and then decides to jump ship. However, he has enough experience under his belt now that he not only knows enough about business, but he's seen how it's done. He is his own art director, creative director, and branding agent. He finds his own cllients. Oh wait, he doesn't have to, because he's worked for ten years.

I always sort of saw myself as the second option. It seemed like I'd work at a small firm or a huge agency for ten years, chipping away, doing the mundane tasks while I waited for prime opportunity to jump ship. However, that does not seem to be the case, and I'm not sure exactly how to proceed. I was the top of my graduating class in the art department pursuing a graphic design degree. 

Maybe I should find some clients before I start on this adventure.

Or maybe not.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Married Life and The Job Hunt

We've been married just under a month now, and things are going great! Ben had two days off for July 4th, so we spent the four day weekend together. Thursday night we went to a Future of Forestry concert here in Wichita. Sam drove down for it. It was a good time. Definitely worth seeing in concert if they are coming to a city near you.

We've been watching a lot of Zombie movies lately, including 28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later, as well as the Resident Evil trilogy (soon to be quadrilogy? really? is that necessary?), and the Night of the Living Dead through Dawn of the Dead.

I put in my two weeks at the Icing finally. The paychecks I'm getting aren't worth putting up with the drama at the store. It seems like no matter what, the schedules are always changing, or one of the employees is causing lots of problems. For example, you don't hit other employees. You also don't walk into the store, full of customers, and start yelling at the other associate working about not getting paid. You also shouldn't walk over to the manager working and start yelling at her about it in front of a customer she's helping. Or snap at people on the phone... or just be rude in general. Hum, yeah.

I had a phone interview at Koch Ind. for a Production Manager position. I would basically keep all of the designers on task and make sure projects are getting completed on time. I'm not very hopeful, simply because I don't have enough experience to get the job. But the phone interview did go really well. So we'll see. Otherwise, I've been applying for tons of jobs. I had an offer at a coffee shop just after starting at the Icing, so I'm planning to call back about it if I don't get a second interview for the Production Manager position.

I basically have to have some sort of full-time job by the end of October, which is when my student loans kick in. Blech. I keep hoping and praying that something will open up somewhere!

Friday, June 04, 2010

The Last (stubborn) Two Inches

Sometime between spring break and about three weeks ago, I gained four inches around my waist. Well, spring break was when I had my dress measured and fitted. So you can see what the problem is. I went from 29" to about 33" in 10 weeks. Not cool, body, not cool.

I'm not exactly sure how this happened. I don't have a problem fitting into any of my clothes. None of my pants are too tight. My shirts are fine. However, I did notice slightly more pudge around the mid-section. Not attractive. Not sexy. I liked my mid-section the way it was....but now, not so much.

And yes, there are people out there right now who are saying "Anna, you're already thin for your height." Which is true. I won't argue that. I don't look bad. But in order to fit into my dress without having it re-altered a week before the wedding, I've got to lose 2 more inches around my waist.

Thanks to my super thin fiancé, I've got quite a bit of motivation. He must have the metabolism of a long-distance runner, because, even though he's gained 10 lbs. in the last three weeks (yay!) it looks like it's all muscle. I honestly can't see where he's put the 10 lbs. AND his suit still fits him perfectly, if not better than the day we bought it.

Anyway, he's been making me work out with him, and it's helped. Over the last two weeks, I've lost 2.5" inches. I'm down to 30.5" around my waist. So I've only got about two more inches to go. We've been walking/running on the treadmill for about 15-20 mins over the last two weeks, lifting weights, and I've been doing yoga intermittently throughout the week, along with pilates workouts.

Whaddya know? Burning calories seems to be the best way to, if not lose weight, at least lose inches and gain muscle, which in turn burns more calories.

To motivate myself, I've told me that unless I work out every day this weekend, I can't have any ice cream. So, until Sunday night, no ice cream. :( We'll see if it works.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

The Registry

First off, I'm not entirely sure what the point in registering was because most people have given us giftcards up to this point. I'm not bitter and it's not that I'm not thankful, but I did spend 6 hours registering for gifts at two different stores.

Secondly, today I spent about an hour or two paring down the registries at both stores. One, so that if in the next week, people purchase things off our registry, we get things that we really want or need. Two, because our registry was hugely disproportionate to the number of people that RSVPed to the wedding. We invited about 200 guests and 60 are actually coming. I didn't see a reason to have 20 pages worth of items.

Registering at Bed Bath and Beyond was a huge pain and I hope to never repeat that again. While I'm excited about some of the items on that list, every time I go into that store, someone asks if they can help you every five seconds. You can't walk around with a registry list in your hand or a scanner without someone checking in on you, asking why you didn't register for this, or that, or the other.

It's funny, because the stuff you get that you put on your registry isn't necessarily the stuff that you really need. And by need, I mean, need. Like dishes. And silverware.

But! Ben's coworkers did throw him an amazing party and bought us a very nice gift card. Which means we can now go on a shopping spree at Target after the wedding. On our top ten is silverware, a set of dishes, a set of knives, a good set of pots and pans, pizza stone, tortilla warmer, and quite possibly the softest blanket ever made.

I'm excited to be able to shop for stuff after the wedding. :)

And the key is....

....keeping it simple.

I think I might be having the most simple wedding on the face of the planet. That is, of course, until my friend Sam gets married. And hers will be even more simple.

I don't see any holes yet in our fool-proof plan for a stress free wedding day, other than it's so early in the day that I have to get up at 5AM to start getting ready to make sure I can head out the door at 8:45AM. The cake and food and flowers should all be ready by that time and at the church. The only thing we have to do is make sure that everyone gets there.

It's a weird feeling, I guess, because it seems like I should have LOTS lots more to do right now, but not really. People start getting here in the middle of next week. And then things start to get really, really busy.

Otherwise, I got the job at The Icing in the mall as a Third Key (kind of part-time manager). I can't fire or hire anyone, but I get to count the drawers and fill out paperwork and catch shoplifters. Someday I'd like to have a real job, but you do what you can. If nothing else it'll be nice not to be sitting at our apartment all day long.

I feel like I should have a big-girl job right now, especially considering I just got done with a $100,000 college career. Instead, I'm working at the mall. We need the income, though, even if it's only a pittance. Any extra cash would be better than none.

I still need to figure out what to get the fiancé as a wedding gift. I'm thinking of going to Barnes and Noble to look around for a while and try to find something fun that he'd enjoy. I'm drawing blanks as to what that would be, but there's got to be something out there.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Boredom Beyond Belief

One of my greatest fears right before graduating was that I would graduate, and then find nothing to do during the day. So, my days would be filled with things just trying to fill time.  I find it funny, because if I had a million dollars, after taxes, I'd give half to charity and spend the other half seeing the world. But it seems like even rich people get bored with that after a while. 

So, obviously, money isn't the answer.

I have been reading quite a bit, though. Due to the recommendation of my good friend Megan Birnstein, I'm reading One Hundred Years of Solitude, and so far it's going quite well. It's Don Quixote-esque style is refreshing in story telling. However, I appreciate the fact that it revolves around quite a few characters, focusing on two central. It's a good read.

Otherwise, I've re-read the Uglies trilogy and I've really enjoyed that. The writing is so much better than the Twilight series and the story is much more interesting. I wish more teenagers would read it. 

And, currently, I'm reading Fight Club. I adore the movie, if for no other reason it's a valid statement on what our culture has come to in the last few years: trying to find cheap thrills and stopping at no length to get the rush and feeling of passion that a person used to have. So far the book is better than the movie, simply because it lets you visualize how things would be. 

On the reading list for the rest of the summer:

  1. Three Cups of Tea
  2. Reading Lolita in Teheran
  3. The Poet of Baghdad 

I've watched all of the episodes of Glee that are available on Hulu. I've kept up with House, watched the ever so sad ending of the first and last season of Flash Forward, and Community. Jeff's now a jerk, which I don't understand. I can't really blame the writers for Flash Forward, simply because they probably weren't giving a lot of warning that the show was going to definitively end instead of just a season. House looks like it's got about one more season in it, and it will end. 

Meanwhile, I've been waiting for a call back about a job. It had looked like I had a job, and I've been waiting for the manager to call me back for five days. The other interview was last Tuesday and she said she wouldn't know for two weeks, but I'll probably give her a call back in the meantime.

If I don't have either of those jobs after the wedding, then I'll start applying at agencies. We'll see how that goes.