Summer 2012

Summer 2012
BibeauArt of Santa Rosa

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Working on Friday...first day...

...the details of my employment haven't been settled on yet, but by Monday, they will be. So, for now I'll be working under the 'temp' label - just to get me in there before the HR folks can officially do my background check and paperwork. It was the brainchild of my recruiter in HR and I really wanted to start, so that's what happened.

I had today off to get things together, clean up and FINALLY purchase my clothing steamer that FINALLY went on sale. Oh, and I got a Swiffer Carpet Flicker - stop what you're doing and go get one NOW. They rock! It will be Justin's job to 'clean the carpets' (all three of them) with this new thing. It's that easy to use and NO, I'm not being paid by Swiffer to put this in here. Clearly, they rock. Especially if you have kids and rugs.

Anyhow, back to the job. Can't wait, it begins tomorrow, I've never worked in a medical office before (the Urgent Care Center) so I'll let you know what it's like. Then, Issac and I can trade notes on working in the medical realm.

I'm happy that the nurse manager, who will be my boss, wanted me to work for her so badly - and she'll be my first real female boss. I always work for men managers so this will be a new thing for me.

In the meantime, I'm knitting Justin's Batman cape and cowl - can't wait to finish so he can wear it to school on Monday. Hey, he'll be the warmest Batman on the block! LOL!

Also, my hubby gave me my official REAL Icon of St. Nino today. It's just beautiful! I'll make sure to take a photo of it and post it the next time I can get on a computer with a really strong connection.

Thank you Honey!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Gotta love a company that constantly shows photos of the Virgin Mary...

...yes, folks, that is the Virgin Mary (albeit a statue, but let's not be picky). I was raised as a 'old school' RC, and darn it - THIS is how I know the Virgin Mary. From this exact form of statue. It's from a medallion/miracle in France that all good RC boys and especially girls were told to wear around their necks each day for protection and for Her prayers.

Not many kids did it, but I'm telling you, I did whatever those nuns told me to do and believed in it 1000%! Seeing this statue of her just reminds me of all the wonderful memories I had at my church and private RC schools growing up. Any life changing service we had at church or school was remembered with a photo of me in front of this statue. I used to hug it when nobody was looking. LOL! I know, I'm silly.

Not very Orthodox of me, that's for sure! But my heart was - and still is - in the right place when it comes to Virgin Mary things here on Earth. I don't care if it's a statue, it's means a lot to me.

Maybe I'll have my photo taken in front of Her again, just for old times sake and to commemorate another happy time in my life. And, of course, there's the eternal connection for me of the Virgin Mary and my Grandmother, Marie. I know they are both praying for me, then and now.

Thank you, Blessed Theotokos for always being there for me!

I may be truly employed by the end of business today...or tomorrow!

Okay, Issac, time to finally exhale with me...the first interview that I had with this healthcare system two weeks ago may be the ticket I was looking for into this organization! The nurse manager came back from her tropical vacation and called me with three different numbers to get a hold of her. I called her this morning on her pager and she all but offered me the position.


More to come soon....

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Still plugging away...

All is not lost, all hope is not lost...well, that's the rule in Corporate America. OR it's just God teaching me, yet again, the virtue of patience.

Patience and I, well, we just don't work well together. I'm too much of a control freak for it to ever work out.

So, the handful of jobs at this place that I would LOVE to work at is kinda on hold until the Reqs get into HR - and then there's a few other things that have to happen before I get called in for another interview.

More patience needed I guess. Well, who said that good things come to those who wait? LOL!

In the meantime, I'll be temping at another company - another HUGE health care company in the HR/Corporate offices (I know, I'm laughing too), what are the odds???

It's a better paying gig and it's a month long, so I'll feel productive enough for a while - or at least until I land the job that I want.

Good news for my fellow smarty-pants Excel know it alls - I'm working with Excel and actually am growing quite fond of it. It's fun when I understand what the heck is going on.

Friday, October 21, 2005

I've found my alter-ego...the Crabby Office Lady!!!

It's Microsoft's way of being funny and informative, but I like her. She's a crab, she knows her stuff and well, I think I'll be her for Halloween this year. LOL!

Gotta love the gray hair and the yellow 'do rag' going on there.

I think that when I finally land a job, I will become the 'Crabby Lady of the Office' due to everyone always coming up to me and asking me for assistance with their software and computer issues. Not sure if I'm totally up to the task these days, but I can certainly try to get the old brain going again.

Think I'll take an Excel course too. Or if not a course, then a tutorial of some sort on line. This is because I just can't seem to skim around life in an office without using it (or being forced to use it). So, OKAY! I'll learn it.

I'm a master of all Windows stuff - but Excel. Hate it. Too many numbers and formulas. Bosses love it, so there you have it.

Oh, and I totally forgot to say on line "HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY SISTER MEL" who, is of course, 21 plus tax (like ALL my sisters, friends, godfamily, etc., are). Maybe it's that we don't like math or something.

Crabby Lady out!

Monday, October 17, 2005

Good Trade...

This is from the cartoon strip called 'Baby Blues" by Jerry Scott and Rick Kirkman from today's paper. There's a mother watching her baby play with blocks in front of her and she's thinking "I've witnessed every burp, smile, hiccup and whimper this baby has ever made at the expense of my personal interests, career and social life." The next box has the mother hugging her hiccup-ing baby with a bubble over her head that reads "Good trade!"

That cartoon will be framed and will be on my desk at my next job.

Then there's the Classic Peanuts cartoon on the same page that shows Snoopy on his doghouse, looking skyward thinking "If the trees are bare...if the skies are gray..." the second panel shows Snoopy lying stomach down on his doghouse looking down at Woodstock driving a Zamboni and thinking "If the Zamboni is running, can winter be far behind?" --That's for CP.

As for the update on the weekend and events - we had a wonderful anniversary party - small, with very close friends all inter-related somehow - I'm happy because Fr. Sergious allowed me the honour of using my Wedding Crowns (Greek tied together with ribbons) that I made last week - and my hubby is happy that all he had to do was take a shower, drive there and walk in the church (he planned, directed, schemed, begged and pleaded for our first and only Wedding service 10 years ago to be such the success that it was. I was the one who kinda showed up and walked down the aisle!).

The weather held out after we had the first rain of Fall the night prior to the event (which the reception was mostly outside) - but when we arrived in Calistoga - it was warm, sunny, and beautiful in the garden. As soon as we get the photos that my cousin took, I'll post a few for y'all!

This week I have an assignment at the hospital for one week - in the same building that HR was in - and they've invited me up for lunch during the week (and so I can get more info on the jobs!!!). I should have a real job by the end of the month.

Hope your Fall is as bright, warm and crisp as ours is! I love this time of year!

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Time to start thinking about the this regard...

If you can access this page, you'll see that the Christmas Stocking project of the OCA is now reaching out to those children in Georgia (not OUR Georgia, but the Republic of Georgia) this year. The stocking project has children from each parish in the OCA find a way to collect funds by the end of October (this year's deadline) to ensure that children in Russia (Beslan) and Georgia get SOMETHING for Christmas this year. Normally, it's what fits into a shoebox - fun stuff, possibly a religious icon or something or other and a gift and candy.

When JP gets home tonight, I'm letting him in on this project. $5 per 'stocking' - per kid. Not a bad deal, and you can help someone out. Too bad they don't have something more local - hmmm. Perhaps they will at the local Pregnancy/women's shelter?

Preparing for the Wedding Blessing...and when do we change the clocks???

...which is this weekend! It reminds me of preparing for our original wedding only this time it's much smaller (only family and true friends in the area - everyone else we're close to MOVED out of state!) and much, MUCH more casual. By far.

CP will have to wear the second part of a Greek Wedding Crown that I made out of flowers and ribbons, but other than that, I think it will go off without a hitch. It's not really a 'wedding blessing' either. More of a thanksgiving service with some improvising from our dear Fr. Sergius for the crowns and a kiss at the end. He's a fun priest-monk and loves a good party!

As it is right now, the weather should be FABOO which means we are blessed once again with lovely weather for a wedding event in October (ten years ago in Bodega and Bodega Bay we lucked out with the same awesome weather and had the reception outside - like we're doing this time, only in Calistoga).

My cousin is taking photos since she's a good photographer (she took a great photo of JP at school for their school's ad) and knows my 'best side' to take photos on! LOL! Well, we all have a 'side' that we favor, right?

CP and I were noticing the photos that I collected from our many events through the past 10 years or so of us - and how YOUNG we were in our twenties getting married! Yikes! We looked like a couple of KIDS! No wonder the people at my office were always saying 'gosh, you're kinda young to be getting married" - I was all of 24! And, if you know what I look like (and what I act like sometimes!!!) you know that I can and have been mistaken for a high schooler. Or a '12 year old' according to my husband and my best friend, Jenn.

With my new 'do' and colouring in my hair, I tend to lean more towards my age although people still mistake me for being in my 'late twenties!' -- I always laugh and tell them that although I loved the compliment, I'm a solid 34. Biologically anyways. Mentally, well, the jury is still out. I'm a kid at heart, always.

My beloved hubby looked like a young, dark and handsome college boy with his baseball hat on, short hair and Bono-esque smile of confidence with me on his arm. Ah! Now he's turning into a dapper grey haired MAN - and is still pretty darn cute if you ask me.

It makes me think of JP when he gets to that age (twenties? thirties?) - and announces his intentions to marry. I wonder if I will be shocked thinking "he's just a KID" or will I be better than that? I know that CP's parents were shocked, so shocked when they heard the 'news' on the telephone that CP's dad didn't say anything and passed the phone to his wife. I still laugh when I remember that one. It's their first son - their baby! Hmmm. Wonder what will happen? Well, he's only four, but in a blink of an eye, he'll be old enough I'm told.

Anyhow, we're doing a thanksgiving service to thank God for his love and blessings and lessons (hard and even harder) that we've been through during the past 10 years or so. JP says he has to be involved in the event because he's still not happy that he wasn't there when we first were married! I thought that was cute of him. He also expected photos of HIM on our wedding picture board that I've created for the event - to see how we've changed over the years. There's pregnancy photos of just us, a new baby with family photo and of course, a recent photo of JP being, well, a happy JP. He's happy.

As for the job front - all is looking good for me. The first hospital interview went very well and I've got more coming in the next couple of weeks. It's nice to feel needed again by an office. The temp agency that got me the first hospital gig has landed me another one - same building - different level - same people - for the next week. The kicker is this - the two people that are looking for Exec Admins are IN THIS NEW OFFICE I'll be working in as the receptionist!!!

God works in mysterious ways, that's for sure. One thing I can count on is this: God has always had his hand 'on me' - so to speak. Either in comforting me, pushing me through something (or a door), dragging me away from toxic situations or people, or His hand is open, giving me abundant blessings always. Truly I am a blessed woman, even when things aren't going well - they are in some way.

Oh, and when, praytell, do we 'fall back' - or are they trying to abolish that? I think they should keep the 'fall back' and eliminate the 'spring forward'!!! Yeah, I know, it wouldn't work! Does anyone know when the time changes???

Monday, October 10, 2005

Today's the first interview with the hospital!

Yay! I'm so happy! I know it will be a good interview - it's not the job I'm taking, but HR said to go ahead and interview for it anyways until they can get me the big gig! Who knows, maybe I'll like this one? The only drawback is that I need to be in two offices during the week - and they don't have a set schedule for the travel yet. We only have one car, so that could be a problem. Or not. Daddy said that if I needed a second car that I can get him to help me out (I want a Ford Explorer or something like that - and he's #1 with Ford Credit). The company pays for gas for my trouble, but we'll see what other offers come in.

In the meantime, as I'm getting ready for the job interview, I'm hearing a 'punch punch' outside the front of our house. It continues in a pattern followed by a male voice. I finally check it out through my sliding glass window door and the new neighbors (with the pet pit bull) have a boxing gym of sorts in their garage - the guy trains others apparently. They've got the punching bags up, the gear on and they're really working out. All I can say is that we've got one busy neighborhood around here. They're nice young people, so I'm not complaining. I'm not too happy about the dog, but we never see it, so I guess that's OKAY.

Well, more updates after my first interview this morning!

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Fall is here and musings on cranky, rude old ladies

Fall is certainly in the air over here in California. The sun is shining brightly with a beautiful golden yellow hue against a blue-grey sky with those wonderful patches of clouds here and there. The wind is blowing just in time to cool you off when the sun becomes too much, and I've got the cough of all coughs.

Fall is here!

I sound like a frog, but knowing it's Fall already makes me happy. I love this season. Not too cold, not too hot. Full of anticipation, full of wonder. Fall has always been my favorite season (if you can call it a season here in California).

Tomorrow I've got my first job interview with the hospital - one of five apparently. I feel confident that I'll land one of them - and can't wait to start. Gotta wait at least two to three weeks, and in the meantime I'm taking care of loose ends around town and possibly working part time for JP's godmother's company as a temp. Just a part time thing - with another great group of people, but I'm holding out for the hospital positions.

Didn't go to church today due to the lovely cough and the coughing attacks I have. Relying on my inhaler and cough syrup with codeine today to help me breathe. I'll be fine in a few days, I'm sure. Doesn't feel like an infection, which it normally turns into. It feels like my immune system is kicking back into gear after the surgery. Maybe the appendix was a big part of my health problems.

Speaking of health problems, my poor honey went to church today with JP and got an earful from a cranky Greek old lady regarding us only having one kid out of ten years of being married. The health problems come in when my husband let the lady know that we have one kid because, well, he's kind of a miracle child since the wifey has some major health problems. The lady was just rude and went back to chewing on her food. This all happened right in front of the priest too. Where are the manners with some people??? I've had people (normally at church) who remark about how you should have children (right after you've just miscarried for the 10th time) and how it's such a shame how we only have one kid.

I'm not as nice as my husband and let the people know that it's not their business, but if it was they would know better not to bring that subject up. I just feel it's not just rude, but it shows a lack of Christian compassion.

Would YOU, dear reader, EVER say something like that to someone after they announced they were celebrating their 5th, 10th or 15th wedding anniversary? NO! You'd be nice and say "Congratulations!" - especially to a stranger at church.

Maybe it's just an ethnic thing. The older women who have had say, 24 kids, are upset that you're not as tired, overweight and cranky as they are? Hey, this is America, deal with it. AND it's none of your business why I can't provide you with more kids, lady. How about the next time we have sex I call you up and let you in on it too?

Yeah, it's that personal. Stay out of my bedroom Greek Grandma!

Okay, rant over for today! Hope everyone has a pleasant week - and I appreciate everyone's prayers for a new job this month!

Friday, October 07, 2005

Happy Wedding Anniversary to us! Ten years!

I'm a bit under the weather today, but feeling great finishing up two weeks of working and still in love with my hubby.

We thank God for his love and guidance during the past ten months. Here's to the next ten...

Thursday, October 06, 2005

"...the representative from California has the floor..."

...some Green Day for you this evening...I'm still trying to figure out what they're saying after that line in the song, but it's something liberal and political, no doubt. Oh well, I still like the song!

Anyhow, I'm happy to report that I'm now up for 5 jobs at the lovely hospital group that I currently temp for (well, until tomorrow), with my first interview on Monday AM! Not bad for being there for two weeks!!!

I really wish I could work in the HR department - I really like the women I've been working with. They're so professional, fun and so smart. I've learned so much in the past two weeks - not to mention gaining my self-confidence again.

And I needed that back. I really did. Thank God for these gifts and for the timing of it.

We're at home tonight watching the Montreal Canadiens hopefully toast the NY Rangers. They're tied right now in the 3rd period, so anything can happen - that's hockey. I must say that I like the new rules that the NHL has given us this year. Faster, frantic hockey. Like old time hockey. Ah, Fall is here.

Tomorrow, my hubby and I are 'ten years old' as we like to say. October 10th, 1995 (opening day of hockey that year - we even had a couple leave our reception early to go see a game) my hubby and I tied the knot in the quaint town of Bodega. We've had it all pretty much in the past 10+ years as y'all know, but it's all about the LOVE! Basically, he's stuck and he knows it. Can't return me to the Catholics (they won't have me) and the warranty expired YEARS ago. LOL!

We'll be celebrating next Saturday at our church in Calistoga - gives me time to plan this 'wedding' for Chris since he pretty much did the last one for me. It was "MY wedding' after all. Well, I'm was a princess, what DO you expect?

Now I'm the Queen in waiting (under CP's mom) and Queen of all Parties, Celebrations and Things of FUN. My turn! Hope he likes the party! This time he gets to wear a Greek wedding crown with flowers! Photos to come!

To CP - as I knew when we first met, you were the one for me, you are the one for me and you always will be my true love. Happy tenth to my tall, dark and handsome honey! May God grant us many more happy years together! xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Sunday, October 02, 2005

To answer a good question brought up by Issac...

This is in reply to Issac's last question about the 'funk' I mentioned in my last post (or perhaps you got the feeling I had something funky going on like depression all along!). I meant to write about it sooner than later - and it has been an interesting journey - looking back anyways.

I suspect that I've always battled some type of 'light depression' although I could usually turn it around after secluding myself in my room that I rented out for a whole weekend. Of course, not having the world's most normal childhood (or most positive) one could say that I'm not 'normally' depressed - just through my environment growing up. In any case I've always had a remarkably strong faith in God and the Virgin Mary thanks to my Grandmother Marie. That alone helped me through life and kept me going.

Forward to 2000. All is well, I'm married, just moved here to be with grandparents before they pass on (they both died), make new friends, work at HP, find the Orthodox faith, find out I have Endo. A lot of stuff in one year - most of this stuff counts as 'major stressors' that tip depression for anyone. God prevails and shows us through.

Then we get pregnant thanks to the Theotokos and the holy oil that Abbess Suzanna gave me. A miracle. An awful pregnancy, a new job (IPO and more money), a colic-y screaming unhappy kid - things start looking a bit bleak. Our faith in God sustains us, again.

After that point things got a bit messy - having a kid will do that sometimes. Forward to present year. I'm sick again with another surgery on the horizon, feeling terrible, with my dream of homeschooling dashed (the good part of that is that JP loves his school) and my depression getting worse with the increasing pain (from endo and my sciatica) and being at home, alone, for most of the day. I decide to wait for after the surgery to get my life together and try to pray when I can.

The surgery results were mixed - it took me forever to get it together again but the trade off was that I'm healthier than I've ever been thanks to my Rock Star Doctor at Stanford. He warned me about being depressed during the recovery, but I thought I had already dealt with that sort of thing before and could handle it the same way this time.

Uh, no.

This time was different. The depression was overwhelming at times and would hit me all of the sudden. I was at home a lot, sleeping a lot, feeling like whatever I did it just wasn't good enough, clean enough, nice enough, whatever lie I held on to at the moment became real for me.

The good thing was that I knew somewhere back in my brain that the 'real' me was still there. I could feel her and knew that she was waiting for me to get to her. During all this stuff I was on a light form of Prozac (Serafem) for PMDD (a lot of women have this) - and instead of taking it one week per month, I was on the stuff 2-4-7. I think it helped me out in a lot of ways, but I tried to get out from under the funk by getting outside in the sun, walking to the store, blogging, reading the paper each morning, keeping up my knitting projects, talking to friends on the phone (most of them moved away) and keeping in touch with my Russian Grandfather.

Waiting all day for Justin to come home with Chris was unbearable at times. There were days when I had the car (we have always had one car that we share for most of our 10+ years together) that I wanted to pick up Justin early from school - just to have something to do. Then there were the nights when Chris came home and I literally would jump in his face and being talking about ANYTHING - it was so nice to see an adult!

I'm not a TV watcher, so watching junk on TV was silly - but sometimes a comedy show would help me smile a bit and laugh. Once I could do that I knew I was OKAY. Laughing is medicine, truly.

I also started hanging out with my cousins who live in the area. We don't always hang out, but I figured it was mostly my fault for not reaching out to them enough. So, when they go out for dessert, dinner or coffee on a spur of the moment thing, I'll do my best to go with them (sans JP or with).

Since my best buddie from across the street moved away I couldn't just walk across the street and hang out, knit, visit, be silly, be myself. That was a big change for me. If something was wrong, walk across the street. If I was lonely, go see Jenn. If I was so mad that I didn't make any sense, walk over to Jenn's house. When I was in so much pain that I couldn't drive, I could muster enough energy to go see her. It was therapy! Poor Jenn - I know her bill is in the mail!! LOL!

Friends are key when one is going through something like this - like my 'funk' as I like to call it. Going to work again for only a week has shown amazing results for me. My hubby noticed and let me in on it this week. He says I'm a totally different person now. More positive, more energized, more of who I was prior to the baby. I don't think I could have done this two months ago or even a week earlier, to be honest with you. Something to do with the timing. God letting me know when it was time by giving me an opportunity through this temp agency to work at the hospital's HR department.

Some women go through post partum depression (I did that, but it wasn't as dark as most ladies have it) and that's their only visit to depression land. I mean that there are other types of depression that set in - some healthy, some temporary, some over quickly and some are self-inflicted of course - but I'm talking about the chemical imbalance of depression that ain't something that you can get a massage, drink a glass of wine with a friend, go shopping and VOILA! it's getting better.

Being at home with kids is the hardest unpaid job in the world, yet also the most interesting one. Where else can you be with your children all day long, watch them grow, clean the house, learn with your kids, have fun AND get depressed so quickly - without knowing it? Happened to me.

Some of my friends who had one child like me either had a second one or are pregnant now with their second or third and although it's great for them, I can't do it - can't do it physically due to the Endo and can't do it because as I get older (I'm 34), the hormones just do what they want - and I can't afford to go through that again. It's too taxing on me and my family and friends.

During all of this, I've thought of my own mother who had five of us kids due to Endo (it was seen as a cure - just get pregnant!!!) and she stayed home with all of us. She hated it and we hated it. We loved going to school because it gave us some time off from mom at home. She hung out all day at home, watched soap operas, went shopping, fixed the house like Martha Stewart in colour (a bit wild for my tastes) and drove us all NUTS.

In the morning, she was awful to deal with, in the afternoon she slept, in the evening she screamed at everyone - and in the middle of the night she would become obsessed with if the clothes in our drawers were folded properly. I'm speaking of the sock drawer. No, she wasn't nuts, but we thought she was. Being home for so long and not having to work tipped her chemical imbalance off the charts til finally, nobody could stand being around her.

Although I feel pity for my mother and her condition, I also don't understand why one would want to linger in that state for so long. I don't understand why she didn't take a class (she was good with music, math and art), join a mother's group (I did), take up reading and turn off the TV, start jogging, go to the library (they always need volunteers), join the church Sunday School program - do something, ANYTHING.

I know that when JP was a baby and things weren't going well at home for anyone, I launched into helping out at the church. I did the bookstore (totally re-did the place and turned it around), I helped with any party planning, kids' activities, church cleaning, you name it, I did it. Yeah, I was nuts - and yeah, it was too much to do for a endo/c-section lady lugging around a child, but I made solid friends through this that I still talk to til this day. I have good memories that outweigh the bad with the events that I do and as usual, God showed me that I am capable of much, much more than I think I can do for others.

Issac, I'm not sure if your wife is simply going through being pregnant (a roller coaster ride no doubt) AND being a stay at home mom, but if you'd like for me to strike up a friendship on the phone with her, I'd be happy to. There's another lady in this town that is a good friend of my best friend (Jenn in Chicago) that is pregnant (has two boys already) and she's in need of friends too. It's not much for us ladies to pick up the phone and get to know each other (if we live far away), write letters, or drive across town (in Jenn's friend's case) and encourage each other.

Our mutual friend on line, Laura, from Nicholas' Board, wrote me letters - hand written - when she had some time on her hands (and we all know that she's one busy lady!!!). God knows how much it meant to me to get a letter in my mail box with her lovely handwriting on it. Of course, I still owe her a letter from last month, but just having some outside contact from another woman that CARES made all the difference for that day. (Thanks Laura! And may God bless you for your friendship!)

This is where sisterhood comes in. Us gals need each other. We've all been through different things, but there are basic things that we all share - having children, being at home, getting depressed from time to time.

I'm sure there are books and books about these subjects about women and their childbearing years, depression and how to get a life as a mom, but I truly know that friendship - in any form - works wonders for one's soul. I hope I've helped a bit, Issac - and please ask any questions you'd like - I'm pretty open about things and I type pretty fast! (almost as fast as I blab!) LOL!

We'll make sure to pray for your wife - I remember her when I do the prayers for a mother and her unborn child each night. You're a great hubby for caring for your wife so much. God bless you too!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange - the founders of the place that I'm working at now

"We live and work to bring all people into union with God and with one another, serving their spiritual and corporal needs in all works of mercy within our power." The Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange

That's one of their mottos that is a part of the mission statement of the company that I work at right now. Although I'm a temp there for only two weeks, we'll see if I become part of the larger family at this hospital soon. I certainly hope so.

It's interesting that for the past four-five years (basically ever since the baby journey began for us) that I've lost so much self esteem, confidence and well, a lot of things. Just didn't feel like myself at all. Knew it would return to normal someday, had hope, prayed and trusted in God that things would work out, but boy, that's certainly a long time for me to get out of a 'funk'.

With only a week under my belt at this full time temp job I've recovered a lot of my professionalism, poise and work ethic that I thought was only a distant memory. Really interesting how that kicked back in. Even hubby said that I'm more confident, motivated, happy - you name it, it's back.

Physically, I'm tired a bit - my back was aching a bit (nothing my chiropractor cousin can't fix!) and my dogs were barking at the end of each night - but I'm doing something that I never did before. Take care of myself. Take breaks, go outside, get some sunlight and fresh air, breathe deeply during the day and, as soon as my virus is kicked - go to the gym.

A novel idea, I know! LOL!

What makes me happy - especially happy at this latest job - is all I wrote above and the fact that I'm always looking for ways to connect and mesh my Faith with what I do at work. I don't feel like the weirdo with the Jesus Icon on my desk. I don't have to answer insulting questions every day against my Faith or my God. I haven't had to look at silly 'motivation' meaningless stuff on the walls at work that gets rather old pretty fast day after day.

What I see is this - women and men surrounded by depictions of the cross (modern and traditional RC), scripture quotes framed around the office (never tire of those), the religious art of my childhood by the RC nuns that used to decorate my churches and fellowship halls in the '70's and '80's, realistic crucifixes on personal desks, Icons. They make me feel at home - I don't feel disconnected or uneasy - instead I rejoice that I can see these things in an office.

The discussion in the office isn't laced with hate, sarcasm or office politics. It really isn't - I've looked, listened for it and haven't seen or felt it with anyone in this office. That's a first for me. I'm always on the lookout for that - and then I find out to what degree it's festering around the office and try to either fit in or dance around the outer limits of it to survive. It's a fact of office life, really. If you don't play the game, you're gone.

The discussion IS peppered with the words 'that is such a blessing' or 'we are so thankful for that blessing' or 'Thanks to God this has happened'. And no, these aren't the nuns. These are the Catholic women that I work with.

They don't just stand around and do this all day either - these ladies WORK and get things DONE with a sense of real teamwork and cause.

So refreshing. I hope that this attitude is everywhere in the organization - so far, from what I've seen (visiting employees of all types) and from being a patient at one of the facilities for my second operation, it's pretty standard if not amazingly across the board.

They get a lot of this attitude and love of their work from the Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange who wrote down what they expect of their hospitals and offices. And they get it from what I see. The standards are high here and very rewarding.

I pray that I can have a job at this place and continue their tradition. More on the Sisters tomorrow!