Guest Post at Abandoning Pretense

Guest Post at Abandoning Pretense

I am so excited to see my guest post up on Kristen’s Blog: Abandoning Pretense. I took three questions from her readers and gave them the full Magnolia. Check it out: Advice with Snark – Magnolia Ripkin With all the self-help books available, it is a wonder that we aren’t all perfect humans already. But we aren’t, and we do still wonder about stuff in our lives. This creates a perfect opportunity for an industry of advisers and life coaches. Personally, I find a lot of bleached teeth life coaches tiresome, because they often gently tell a body what they might want to hear. Sometimes, however, the right advice kind of feels like a cold glass of water in the face. That is the kind of advice you can trust. Question number 1: I have a husband and two children, and feel like I’m always coming in last in the family – I do everything for everyone else but no one is taking care of me. How can I move up a place or two? You are the Mom — promote your damn self by a few notches! I think we create the environment for people to disregard our needs, and then we wonder why we are living in the bottom of the well while people throw food scraps at us. No Mama, you need to implement a few things that will set the tone that you matter dammit… Bathrooms come with locks. Use them. It is actually not mandatory to allow children to impinge on your privacy. There has to be “no go” zones, like the nightstand by your bed where you keep your naughty things. If your kid comes out of the bedroom sporting a vibrator in his belt like a sword, it might be great entertainment for your dinner party, but the bigger question is, Why did he think it was okay to go in your drawers? Like dogs and other pack animals, alpha eats first. Try it… even husbands learn if they approach your kill that they will be on the receiving end of a snarl and a snap. And never share your chocolate. Try some of these, and see how fast everybody learns to stand down when Mama needs her time and space. — — — Question number 2 My husband doesn’t want more kids; I do. I’m not holding it against him, but I seriously have zero interest in the sex. What if I never want to do the horizontal mambo (or vertical, ’cause that’s cool, too…) again? What if I only want the sex for the baby? OHMYGOD AM I CATHOLIC? Wait, I am… You are totally holding it against him, get real with that. This...
Stepping back into the workforce

Stepping back into the workforce

Over a number of years I have interviewed a wagon load of people for positions, mainly for office jobs. You meet all kinds of interesting characters when you are trying to find your new favourite employee. The specific subgroup of applicants that I am thinking about today is one needing some advice methinks. Let’s call them the “Time Travellers” group of workforce re-entries. They last worked some time ago, and are trying to hop back on to the working world. I often find myself across from a jittering hopeful applying for their first job after a parental leave. Some had been off for years, and others for shorter periods, but generally they have been dealing in laundry, diapers and making shopping lists in crayon for a measurable gap in their career timeline. The sink hole of work skills glares up like a beacon of warning from their resumes. They all share the same worry about having lost their skills or being too behind to be worth hiring. It is always interesting to hire somebody who feels insecure about their skill set and value. They are convinced they are behind the times, and are often right about that. If you are a stay at home parent with some lag in your work place knowledge, you can still make your way up the ladder pretty quickly. Here are the top pieces of advice for your personal and professional approach when you want to get back on the work force merry go round. To be clear, these things come from what I have seen, and have actually happened, I couldn’t make this shit up. For your personal presentation: Yoga pants are okay at home and at yoga. Do not wear them to job interviews. Get a new hair do, and pay more than $7 for the cut if you can. Polish shoes and nails, people notice that stuff if you want to work in an office. A balconette bra hoisting the girls up around your chin will not help, not with me anyway. Do not go on and on about your kids. Good to know how great a parent you are, once you get the job. However in the interview you are wasting my time. Do not chew gum and do not wear silly hair pretties – ever. Do not show up late for the interview without having a valid reason that is explained the moment you know you will be a minute late. Guys, get a new damned tie. Oh and check the one you are wearing for spit-up. No visible piercings or those horrific ear wheels unless you are from the specific African tribe who started them, in which case they...
Setting My Words Free

Setting My Words Free

I have always been known for saying things that other people mince about. I know this about myself and don’t do well around thin skinned people. Maybe it is because I have too many words, and I just have to get them out. Sometimes they are funny, often times they are doctrinaire, and as my blog tag line says “everybody is entitled to my opinion.” I have always had so many words, and they were perpetually fighting for emancipation, they needed to be set free. I just didn’t know where to let them fly. I have also had to remain cautious with them. Some of the sharper ones might have been upsetting to the people around me… so I just kind of moved my words around and shunted them aside. I would wrestle them back into the shadows and wait for the need to speak to dissipate. The words didn’t like it their banishment, and would pout and grumble.  At one point I briefly considered a career in politics, but realized that I was unlikely to be capable of thinking one thing, and saying another. So you can see my dilemma. My tsunami of words was a career limiting situation. So I made my way through the pile of scattered words in my head and heart, and poured them out in safe places. I sent letters to my friends, then emails, and wherever I would write, I put out as much of the funny as I could. But the channels were limited. Like running a flood down short sealed tunnels, there were restrictions like walls on either side. I learned about blogging, from a great friend who showed me it could happen in a way that didn’t require a book deal or a job at a local paper. I immediately knew what to do. I would set up a blog, and take on the role of  life coach and be kind of like Ann Landers, in the voice of Erma Bombeck, with martinis. So it has been just over a year and I am finding opportunities and friendships  I never thought possible. I enjoy my readers, I very much love the fellow bloggers at Blunt Moms who let me edit them, and push them for higher and better all the time. For my friends who trusted me and supported me, and told me I should, I believed you because you said I could do it….. you love my words because they are edgy and funny. The blogger world is noisy and busy, but I went looking for my pod people. I discovered a blogger anthology called “I Just Want to Pee Alone” which made me laugh. For two reasons actually,...