Tag Archive | freelance

The Past 13 Days…

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I hate to sound like a Debbie Downer, but things have been a bit rough around our house the past few weeks. It all started on June 6, when my husband’s bike lock was cut on our front porch and the seatless ride was stolen (he kept the seat and helmet in the house). Two days later our water heater stopped working in the middle of my shower and yes, I had conditioner in my hair when everything went ice cold. Needless to say, that was less than awesome. Now, 10 days later, despite three visits from the plumber last week which included 5 minutes of hot water when it was “fixed” Friday morning, we are still without a functioning unit. Maybe today will finally be the day when a new switch gets installed and, dear God, if that doesn’t solve the problem there will be a seriously cranky pregnant lady over here!

On top of that excitement I managed to break — and when I say break I really mean shatter — a large, seriously heavy duty duralex drinking glass INTO the dishwasher. Ah, the joys of home ownership…

Since I am well into a rant, let me add that I’m 29 weeks pregnant and it’s approximately a million degrees outside (again) so needless to say I am a little on the uncomfortable side.

With all those negative things floating around, I’m trying my best not to focus on the bad stuff (although it sure doesn’t sound like it in the previous paragraphs, does it?). There are many things I am grateful for this week:

• We can afford to fix our hot water heater (if anyone ever figures out exactly what is wrong with it…), that we have no shortage of water here in DC and that my brother-in-law and sister-in-law live just down the block so we have somewhere to take warm showers (thanks guys!)
• Our garden is growing in leaps and bounds thanks to the numerous downpours last week. Also the flowers I planted around the outer borders of each bed are finally starting to bloom and add color to our backyard.
• Speaking of the garden, my hubby was able to pick an entire bowl of delicious, tart blueberries from one of our plots on Saturday morning. Yum.
• And speaking of my hubby, he finished re-painting our bedroom Saturday, taking us from red to a really lovely blue/gray. And with the help of my brother-in-law our furniture is no longer all in the middle of the room, which is a definite plus when it comes to navigating my many middle of the night trips to the bathroom.
• Work is busy, busy, busy which is always something to be pleased about.
• After living in DC for about 5 years, we finally have air conditioning in the house, which has been a huge relief.
• And our baby hippo is roughly the size of a butternut squash this week. Or an acorn squash, depending on what baby app I’m looking at. Also I am feeling lots of kicks and jabs and who knows what from the baby, which always makes me smile.

Speaking of hippos, look what came in the mail from our financial planner’s office the other day:

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Here’s to keeping the bright side in focus, even on rough days!

Mini Monday: Smiling

It has definitely been a Monday. Instead of letting this hectic day get me down, I thought I’d take a moment away from the grindstone to reflect on some of the things that have made me smile the past few days:

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*If you click on the picture, the caption text becomes much larger.

Happy Administrative Assistant Day — To Me!

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Being self-employed means I am responsible for everything involved in my business life. Not only do I need to make sure I complete my actual projects in a timely fashion (which is pretty important), but I am also my own IT department and responsible for taking care of all the mundane tasks involved in keeping a business afloat like invoicing, tracking expenses, filing my taxes, etc. You know, the really fun stuff.

So when I was reminded that today is administrative assistant day, I thought I’d better let myself know I am appreciated! I’m enjoying working from our new breakfast room this morning with my sweet treat thanks to my awesome boss — a peanut butter chocolate cupcake (totally good for the baby, think of all the iron and protein in the peanut butter!) and a (decaf) iced mocha. Also, I managed to get “I Am My Own Best Friend” from Chicago stuck in my head this morning. Of course, I am belting out “I am my own administrative assistant!” to myself which doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

Happy administrative assistant day!

Thankful Thursday

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Yes, it’s Thankful Thursday on Friday! I swear I started this post yesterday but things just got away from me, so without further ado:

I can’t believe it is only a week until Thanksgiving —  where did 2013 go? As the year winds down and the holiday season swiftly approaches, it seems as good a time as any to reflect on some of the many things I am grateful this year.

The opportunity to sing. On Sunday I will be able to share my voice with others during the Capitol Hill Group Ministries Interfaith Thanksgiving Service. This is just one of the unique chances I have had this year to get back to singing. During the summer I connected with a violinist and pianist to perform “To Love You More” at a house concert. It was so much fun to sing was the two of them, as well as a drummer and a cellist.

• Our big, crazy families. While my immediate family is pretty small on both sides, my husband’s family is quite large and this year we are getting an extra does of togetherness as his mom’s side is in the process of descending upon DC for Thanksgiving. We’ll have a week and a half of big (delicious) dinners, our favorite California wines, trips to museums and monuments, chilly winter walks and lots of time for talking (too bad we don’t have a fire place to gather around)! And in just a few weeks we will get to do it all over again (with my family included this time) in California.

The many chances to travel near and far in 2013 — from Turkey to Tampa I have seen beautiful sunsets, had incredible meals, and spent time cultivating relationships new and old. I can’t imagine what life would be like without airplanes that can get me to California in 6 hours or to Istanbul in 10.

• Work that I love. It’s been four years since I went out on a limb and began to work as a freelancer. Honestly, I couldn’t imagine my life any other way. I love the projects I get to work on, my handful of colleagues, my clients and my freedom — who else can take a mid-day wake-up shower? Each year I learn more about running my own business, meeting the needs of a wide range of clients and the blessings of being able to grocery shop on Tuesday’s at 10 am.
What are you thankful for in 2013?

Mini Monday: November?!

I cannot believe that it is already November! Where has 2013 gone? After a gorgeous fall weekend full of sunshine and bright blue skies, the weather seems to have decided it is winter today. Just in advance of the cold shift, I managed to harvest a bowl full of cherry tomatoes and seven or eight small green bell peppers from the garden yesterday. There were also a few larger tomatoes, a cucumber, a handful of green beans and some cayenne peppers. We may get a couple more cherry tomatoes in the next few days, but I think that the garden season is pretty much over here in DC.

Front and center on my radar this week is our home renovation project (guessing it will be front and center for quite some time…). We are in the fifth day of active work and our back porches are gone! It has been (mostly) neat to be home while the crew is working so I can take pictures and see the house at all stages of disrepair. Sometimes it has been loud, but so far, I’ve been able to plug away on my own projects while they are tearing the house apart. Here’s the back of our house sans porches — we certainly will not be using those doors for awhile! Also we have never had so much natural light in the dining room — it’s amazing, albeit a bit chilly. It will be wonderful when these windows and the pair in the office above get replaced. They are the final four original windows in the house and single-pane glass from 1937 isn’t exactly the most efficient…

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Mini Monday: The Shutdown

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Tonight at midnight we find out whether or not my husband, a federal employee, will be reporting for work tomorrow. At this point, it certainly doesn’t look likely. And we find ourselves in that catch 22 of flexibility versus money — we would probably have time to get out of town for a few days, but with no idea when my husband will be reporting for work again (or if he will be paid for all of the days that the government remains shutdown) it’s more likely that we will remain at home pinching pennies.

So I’m trying to embrace the positive side of this brief (I hope) unpaid vacation by thinking of all the projects around the house he can work on while this ridiculous stand off drags on. And based on what I’ve got on the list so far, it looks like I’m finally going to have the live-in maid that I’ve always dreamed of! I’m sure my husband just can’t wait to get started on painting the utility room floor, cleaning the stove, patching the porch roof, and cooking copious amounts of soup and sauces to freeze among other projects (it’s a long list). With both of us home all day I had to come up with enough tasks to keep him out of my office for at least a few hours a day so I can still get some work done!

And don’t worry, I’ve promised to pay him … in peanut butter chocolate chip cookies. He quickly agreed to the deal.

 

Shiloh: A Series of Photos

Since early August we have had three dog visitors: Bo, Shiloh and Bella. It seemed like there would be a pause in our hosting four-legged guests, but Shiloh’s mommy just got engaged and asked if we could watch her furry angel while they visited family this weekend. And really, how could we say no to this face?

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This morning Shiloh and I got up late — of course she got up early with my hubby before he went to rowing, came back to bed, got up again to go for a walk when my hubby came home, then came back to bed again — made coffee and started to work, but she was still a little bit tired.

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Despite some big yawns, Shiloh managed to pose for a few pictures. During her photo shoot she was preoccupied, wondering what this so-called “work” was that I had been doing because she certainly could have gone for a lot more petting.

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Then she just couldn’t take it anymore — it was nap time! It’s “ruff” being a doggie intern.

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