Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Monday, January 29, 2007
I hung up the phone and braced myself. I knew it was coming. One, two....there it was from across the room..."Sooooooper!"
I get teased at my office for my phone persona. Every day I leave the quiet of my office and go out into our dispatch center to cover the phones during lunch for 2 to 3 hours. And most of the time, I enjoy the snippets of personal conversation that occur while I am taking orders. It has been said that you can hear a smile over the phone if you actually smile while you talk and I think this is true. I try to convey that during the calls. Not to be fake, but because I really do enjoy interacting with people. There is Mike and Herman from two local news stations, Wendy from a manufacturing plant, and Joe from a prestigious law firm downtown. I recognize their voices right away. One of our customers, Todd, was pretty happy one day and when I asked him about it, it was because his birthday was coming up. I made sure he got his favorite cake on his birthday...german chocolate...from the best bakery around.
A few months back, I noticed a couple of the guys in the office saying "soooooper" a lot when I was hanging up from a call. I asked, "Are you guys making fun of me?" and their laughter answered me. Now, these are the nicest guys...two of my favorite people in the whole office....so I just went with the fun and started telling customers to have a super day before hanging up. When they leave for lunch I remind them to have a super lunch. When we leave at the end of the workday, they tell me to have a super evening or super weekend. Lots of stuff is just super now when we are talking.
Yesterday, my daughter and I were walking into the library. A couple was leaving and passed us by. They were laughing so I said, "You two are having too much fun!" We exchanged a bit of conversation and each went on our way. My daughter smiled and said something to the effect of, "You just always have to talk to people don't you?"
It's true! I chit chat with the person at the fast food drive through, the person at what ever counter I find myself at, the bagger who bags my groceries....I have even been known to roll down the window and talk to the person in the car next to me. For me, being around people is like letting a dog loose in a butcher shop---Wow! Now this is heaven!!
But when it happened again today....that "soooooper!" from across the dispatch center, it made me wonder....am I super friendly? Or super annoying? Hopefully? Just soooooooper goofy-I could live with that!
By the way......have a soooooooooooooooper day!
Friday, January 26, 2007
Thursday, January 25, 2007
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Friday, January 19, 2007
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Monday, January 15, 2007
Friday, January 12, 2007
I met Stephanie at work. She was among a group of new administrators, I was a consultant, and we were all at a team building workshop led by Wayne State University professor. The company was split into two groups for one exercise. Stephanie and I landed on the same team. The exercise included a number of negotiations between teams in which a light bulb was supposed to go on and we were supposed to discover how to develop win-win scenarios. Steph and I missed that. Both of us had highly competitive natures and we focused on WINNING, causing so much havoc with the other team. Despite admitting that we were wrong and that we had indeed learned from our mistake and indeed could see how a win-win scenario was the best outcome, some never forgave us. But our friendship had begun.
When six of us from the company decided to take group golf lessons, our friendship was framed. We bought our golf clubs together. Somehow Steph talked me into buying a pink golf bag so we could all having matching bags. I still can't believe I let her talk me into that. We golfed together at least once a week and boy, did we have some adventures. We had the "serial killer stalking incident", we had a time we were almost killed when we almost drove our golf cart off a cliff we didn't know was there, and the only picture I know for sure I have of Steph is from the time I accidentally threw her out of the golf cart when we were trying to buzz some other golfers. It was amazing because she landed prostrate on the ground but did not spill one drop of the drink she had been holding. The picture has me posing with one foot on her back, like a prize hunter standing over her kill. We were sub par golfers but golfed everything from par 3 to nationally acclaimed courses. We didn't take the game or ourselves too seriously.
I left the company to raise my daughter. Around the same time, Stephanie left to join another company. She hired me as an independent consultant which basically was the start of my own business. I worked for her for many years. Even after I decided to quit the business and become a stay-at-home mom, I kept consulting for Steph. We helped each other reach some personal business goals. I had always wanted to record older people's life stories on audio/visual for their families. She had always wanted to put a park in at a nursing home, complete with waterfall and gazebo. She hired me to write grants for both of these projects and we were awarded both grants. I remember sitting with her on a swinging bench next to the 8 foot tall slate waterfall, just sharing the moment of a dream fulfilled.
There are so many cherished memories I have of Stephanie. Like the time we went to see the late showing of Basic Instinct with another friend. There were only about 6 other people in the theater and I am sure we scared them because for some reason I cannot remember, every time Sharon Stone brought out the ice pick, we started to laugh uncontrollably. Steph was very smart and she and my husband would play partners against a whole room full of people and still win at Trivial Pursuit. Once, my husband decided to take our daughter to Disney World after she had received a perfect score at her music testing. I was telling Steph about it at work and it turned out her cousins from Israel were going to be there at the same time. She decided to come with us. We didn't tell her cousins and when they went to check in at their hotel, there we all were with Steph to welcome them. It was so much fun. When she learned that my family was vacationing on the east coast and would be in Newport, RI she made me promise to visit the Red Parrot Restaurant because they had the best food she had ever eaten. We did, it did and we went back there the next year. One of my daughter's favorite Christmas decorations is the Dickens music box from Aunt Stephanie. Yes, she was Aunt Stephanie to my daughter. Steph's middle name was Rachel and Steph always claimed that my daughter was named after her. She liked to point out how odd it was to have a Jewish first name and an Irish last name.
It is amazing that Stephanie and I shared a friendship that spanned almost 20 years because we couldn't be more different. She was Jewish and I a Christ follower. She couldn't stand converted Jews, yet we often talked about faith and our religions and what they meant to us. She was older than me and single. I was married. Stephanie's mom was in a concentration camp in Poland when she was pregnant with Stephanie. I had not experienced prejudice. She was a declared liberal. I was conservative. She was pro-choice. I was pro-life. We often talked about when a fetus became a "person" but we never came to an agreement on that. She was into modern decor while I preferred antiques and an eclectic range from victorian to traditional, but nothing modern. Funny that I was the one who helped her pick out furnishings for her new condo....all very very sleek and modern in style. We didn't watch the same television shows...she liked QVC and the cooking channel. I never watched those unless I was over her house. Religion, politics....things we were mostly on opposite sides of the fence on, never kept us from a friendship. We laughed our heads off. Had a few times we cried together. We helped each other and knew that the other was always there for us. Stephanie was not a warm fuzzy person. I am. I can't remember Steph and I ever telling each other that we loved each other. We may have hugged on occasion. I have no regrets with Stephanie, though. We had the kind of friendship where things could be left unsaid. And, that could pick right back up if we didn't see each other for a while. We were secure in our friendship.
I loved Stephanie. We were great friends.
Thursday, January 11, 2007
I wonder, do I know You, the real You? Or do I box You safely into the boundaries I have created in my imagination? I want to know the real Jesus. I want You.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
Someone recently reminded me of some of the crazy things I have done in the past. I wasn't a rebellious teen, I just did a lot of outlandish things. I made a 40 year old gas station attendant pump $.05 of gas in my tank while my girlfriends were making bets he wouldn't do it. He didn't want to, but I talked him into it. Ok, gas was under a dollar back then, but still! Once, one of my friends put out a challange to see who could fit a whole McDonald's pie in their mouth. I was on the last bit of pie when I started to laugh...well, you don't want to know...it wasn't pretty. I never got in trouble either because I was such a good, likable kid. I had my neighbor call Bocci, the woman who was in charge of us while my mom was at work, the day before I was supposed to start middle school and ask why I wasn't in school THAT day. I kept telling my neighbor what to say...like threaten to send a truant officer to the home and other good stuff like that. When the truth came out, my NEIGHBOR got in trouble even though I adamantly tried to take the blame because it was all my idea! Go figure!
Church is certainly not considered off limits. A group of my sister-friends and I took turns wearing the ugliest green feather covered hat to church, Sunday after Sunday. Someone swiped it during its rotation and we were never able to recover it, or find out for sure who was behind the kidnapping. (Personally, I think it was the senior pastor...he hated that hat! lol) I did have pranks going between myself and a group of Master Commission kids. Finally the church board had to step in and intervene. That was probably a good thing. Neither of us would back off and our schemes were getting grander and grander.
My only rules are that it can't be anything mean or demeaning, and noone's property can be damaged. I have known a few "Master's" in my day, and it has been an honor to be in their company.
So, now....how about you? What are some of the craziest things you have done?
Monday, January 08, 2007
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. John 20:21-23
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. John 14:26
The power went out at work today...but then, you know that don't you...lol! It never ceases to amaze me how much of my job I cannot do without electricity. We all run around trying to get the generator set up because we know that even a bit of power will help. Trying to enter jobs manually is frustrating because we don't have the information at our fingertips like we are sooo used to. And we can't see. Trying to find my way around my office or a room with no windows is uncomfortable. Sometimes I just think I should go home because I am accomplishing NOTHING....wasting time!
Today the office rejoiced when a light bulb went on. It signaled that we had power once more. Our computers, our lights...everything would work again.
Lord, I can't work right without Your power. I can accomplish nothing without Your Holy Spirit. I will just be wasting time if I "go" for You on my own power, my own skill, my own...anything. Anoint me, for Your work, for Your glory...with Your Holy Spirit. And let me never take this for granted.
Image taken from here.
Friday, January 05, 2007
Thursday, January 04, 2007
WILL YOU GO OUT WITHOUT KNOWING
"He went out, not knowing wither he went." Hebrews 11:8
Tuesday, January 02, 2007
When I was talking with God this morning, I said that I was feeling kind of empty. On my way in to work, I stopped at my 7-11 and there was Robert! I hadn't seen him in about 2 months. He came inside the store so we could talk for awhile. We chatted while he bought one lottery ticket. Sam, the new store clerk, told him she hoped he would win $100,000. I asked Robert what he would do with $100,000. He talked about wanting to buy a little house and a nice little car. We chatted about the movie, Dream Girls, that he wants to go see. It was just soooo good to see Robert!
I got an invitation to gchat from Peta, my Czech Republic adopted neice. We got to talk in real time today for the very first time ever. I am sure we overwhelmed her...because several of us were talking to her at one time. She will be in the United States soon. I was sooo excited to be able to talk to her in almost-person! I can't tell you how happy this made me!
Peta commented on how close my daughter and I are. I got to ramble on about my daughter...one of my favorite subjects....and how thankful I am to be her mom. I love that kid! We had fun this weekend going through some of the stuff I saved from when she was younger. Only Rachel would know how much I would love a green sock! One of my best presents ever!
My tank is now full! Thanks, Lord!