Lucky Number Seven!
It really has hit me now that I'm not just on vacation, that I really don't have a job. When it first happened, I had lots of nonsense to do with filing for unemployment compensation, figuring out how to get my 401K transferred, lots of unemployment housekeeping things. Then I went away for a long weekend with my mom to see my aunt on the Cape, and other aunts joined us. [The girl cousins were all too busy with school and weekend jobs. I'm officially old now!] Then it was Christmas, and after we had family visiting so I spent time with them. Now, it's the post-holiday doldrums and...*crickets*
I do think that a lot of people feel a sense of let down after the holidays, so I know I'm probably not alone. I have things to do, I just need to STEP AWAY FROM THE IPAD/COMPUTER and DO THEM.
Speaking of my 401K, the money went missing. Yes, missing. I had arranged for it to be transferred out of W*llsF**go early to mid December. I received an email in mid December stating that the money was being delivered (VIA CHECK--no, I'm not kidding) to our financial planner's office. Fine, great. Our financial planner, Ed, called me just before Christmas to say he hadn't received the money, but we agreed to wait until the next week to pursue things, since the mail system gets busy around this time of year. Nothing. Ed called me on New Years Eve day to say he still hadn't received anything. Neither had I. Finally I called WF on Monday to find out what was going on (yeah, hi, I'm a procrastinator).
WF should rename themselves WTF, because that's all I was thinking while talking to the customer service rep. He had no idea what happened, and decided to stop payment on the check, but would be happy to reissue me one for $25. I got a little upset about that, and in the end, didn't have to pay anything. Damn right--I didn't lose my money, YOU did. Why should I be penalized!?!?! And I'm still waiting for the check to show up.
Some good news: I have two clients, and possibly two more lined up. When I was first let go, I was very excited and doing a lot of outreach to potential clients, but then there was a lull, between the holidays and people's schedules. Things quieted down for me, even though I had one client almost from the start of my unemployed tenure; her things had to wait on her production schedule. I don't want to procrastinate too much...
I have one @udi0b**k n@rr@t0r and one author as clients, and one of each as potential clients. My former job was at an @udi0b**k publisher, and I got to know a lot of the n@rr@t0rs very well. I reached out to them after I left, just to let them know, especially since I was working closely with a few of them on projects and didn't want them to wonder why I wasn't replying to their emails. That turned into people saying "Have you ever considered doing what you did for Company X on your own?" and here I am now, with a tiny little potential business developing. The author I met on Twitter, if you can believe it, and we'd been "Twitter friends" for awhile. After he heard what happened to me, he asked me if I was interested in helping him.
Why the secret coding for those words? I'm a little paranoid about anyone finding my blog and figuring out who I am. Well, besides those of you who know me already :)
Life is funny sometimes. For the longest time, I'd thought about starting my own business, so that I'd have a certain amount of flexibility, especially when we have kids, but I was stuck about WHAT to do as my business. Other people had suggested it to me, too. "I have no skills," I'd say. "How do I network???" I panicked.
Sometimes things just work out when you least expect it. [Or, start to work out. This could all be a huge fail. Not being pessimistic, just realistic.] I had skills! I had a network to tap into! Duh Jen!!!
I know it won't be easy; it will take a lot of work. My grandfather started a business when my dad was little. He worked lots of long hours to provide for his family and to grow his business, which later employed my dad and one of my uncles. Grandpa has been gone for two years now, but the business is still in operation. My dad has worked hard, too; there were many late nights, heading to the yard after Mass on Sundays, meaning he pulled 6.5 day weeks. People think it's easier than it is, but I know better.
There are still a lot of nuts and bolts type things that I need to do regarding my business. Talk to our accountant to see how I should go about setting things up. Make a PayPal account. Create a website. Order business cards. Finish setting up my office area. Perhaps buy a laptop....
Oh yeah, and most importantly, I'll need a name! I think that will be the hardest part. I'm actually considering a play on my Twitter handle, but we'll see.
To completely change topics, here is our new mantel, which was installed right before Christmas. Our house didn't come with one, and I can't figure out why the previous owners (who had the house built for them) didn't put one in. It still needs to be primed and painted...oh, and some caulk needs to be added between the mantel and the wall. I should have done the caulking sooner, because I was drilling holes where those picture frames are, and put the bit down on the mantel, and it rolled into the crack. We can't get it out, but good thing bits can be purchased separately and are cheap!
We now have candle sconces on either side and the pictures have been relocated. I've only had the sconces for about a year, but I'm on a roll to get things done. I'll also need to figure out what to put on top of the mantel. It's so empty! As for paint color, I'm going with white--the same paint as the trim. Chris thinks white is a bad idea, especially with the wood stove, and that we should stain it. There is a lot of wood furniture and darker colors in the room already. We need some brightness! White will look elegant, although I'm sure I'll be wiping down the mantel frequently. I'm always sweeping or vacuuming this area; it gets so dirty so fast! The savings on heating oil is well worth it.
Conversion Diary and see what she's been up to? I hear she's a little bored since she can't do much right now...share with her your blog or a favorite of yours. She needs reading materials!
PS. Yes, I changed the blog name again. Bear with me. I'm trying to find something a little more...expressive and encompassing.