Sunday, August 10, 2008

A little bit of honesty...

It's funny. I just read MC's last post, and I have to say, it wasn't very fair. Considering she started this blog without my knowledge, I can't help but be at a disadvantage when it comes to posting. It was only by me being bored and looking through her links that I was reminded that she started this at all. That being said, Mary Catherine is probably right. I never have been much of a writer, although if you force me to, I can occasionally put pen to paper so to speak. Since my wife recently posted with her jobs, I think I will follow suit:

Random stuff guy at Inspirations:

There was this tiny Christian book store across the street from the Jr. high school I went to in Stevens Point Wisconsin call Inspirations. It's where a lot of the college students that went to my church worked, and quite a few of them also helped with the youth group. There was a short period of time when our school hosted an after hours computer club. The problem was transportation though. I lived quite a bit away from the school, and the club didn't have school provided transportation afterward. In order for me to be a part of it, I would go to the club, hang out for 45 minutes or so, and then walk over to inspirations. There, Bonnie would put me to work doing various odd and end tasks. Nothing dangerous, and nothing on the books either. Basically, I could come and hang out in the back, go out front and do some facing of product, go in back and dismantle cardboard boxes for recycling, and one time I got to call an order in for her while she was handling some emergency. All in all fun times, and she gave me some concert tickets now and again to make up for the lack in pay. Eventually my mom would come and pick me up after she got done with work, and that would be that. After the fall semester, Computer club was shut down due to budget constraints, but I always appreciated her giving me a place to stay.

Cashier at Copps Food Store

Copps is like Kroger in Wisconsin. I started out doing bagging, but quickly moved up to cashier. Eventually I found myself in the liquor department and then the gas station. I was almost to the service desk position when I graduated 2 years later. I really appreciate some of the lessons that I learned there, including never try to get romantically involved with your co-workers :-p
Lots of hot sweaty work pushing carts. If you ever see someone leave their cart out in the middle of the parking lot, be kind and push it to one of the corals... You'll be doing them a big favor.

Blockbuster Employee

This is probably the one job that I don't think fondly of, and it's a shame that's the case. The people were friendly, the movies were fun, and I've never worked at another spot where you could watch a full Packers game without getting in trouble. The biggest reason I didn't like it was because of the corporate policies. Now, I understand why rules exist. I understand that they have to put pressure on you to get sales. But honestly, the store that I worked at was one of the few stores making money, and the majority of the time it was because we broke the rules on selling product. I'm sure if you ever go into a store like best buy, for example, you're going to expect to get hounded by at least one sales person trying to make their numbers. But if I'm going to go rent a movie, I don't want someone recommending something unless I ask for a suggestion. And the beautiful thing about blockbuster employees is that chances are they've already seen any movie your interested in. Now, if you leave it at that, great. But 9 times out of 10, on a Friday night I had to put on a red apron and walk around the store suggesting movies and the "programs" that blockbuster offered to "save you money". I got fed up with the corporate pressure, and left.


This one came out of left field, and has caused me to grow the most of any job I have worked. My cousin-in-law, Chris Kenney, started a business trying to meet the IT needs of small to medium sized businesses. Now originally, he had me doing some home repair jobs for him, but I eventually moved up to wiring some new construction he had gotten wind of. This job forced me to really come out of my shell. It's too bad I wasn't who am I now back then, because I think we could have really made something come together if I had been more... prepared. However, I am incredibly thankful for how this job prepared me to think and work in my current job, which is:

System Administrator for Print Fulfillment Services.

I have had the distinct pleasure for working for two very good bosses for the positions I have been in. Chris taught me to be extroverted when it came to my work, and has improved my customer relations skills incredibly. Ed Engelking, My current boss, has taught me how to lead a group of talented people to accomplish a very challenging group of projects, both through example, and by letting me take the reigns at certain points in time. He has told me in times past that he sees me in his type of position at some other location, and I have to say, after the week I've just had in his shoes, I'm not sure right now whether I want it or not. That's not to say I won't eventually want that type of position, or maybe at a company a little more... stable. Then again, I have a few more weeks to try and see what he does on a daily basis, and run with that info for future goals.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Sneaking suspicion

I have this strange feeling that this blog will very quickly transition from being "ours" to "mine." Marshall has never been much of a writer, and I have been publishing online in some form or another since I was 16. That being said, so much of our life is shared that I am sure he will feature prominently in much of what I have to say.

Today's post was sparked by my first (and so far only) loyal reader. On her blog, Chelsey posted a list of jobs that she has had. What follows is my list of occupations.

  • Babysitter - Babysitting has been a constant in my life since around age 12. I started out staying with some family friends (the oldest of which was only a couple years younger then myself) while their mother did some grocery shopping. By the time I was in 8th grade, I had a regular two-day-a-week job babysitting for a church family while the mom taught piano lessons and the father was at work. I kept this job during the school years until I graduated high school. I still "baby-sit" for friends in our Bible Study, though Marshall usually helps me and we call it "training" now.
  • Counter girl at Raphael's - This was first "real" job. I started working at this little Italian restaurant in the Wal-Mart shopping center the summer after I got my car. I applied on a whim one night when my family went in to eat, and a week later I was working there. It was a fairly easy job, but I came home feeling so greasy and sweaty every night. I was definitely happy to be done when the summer came to an end.
  • Office assistant in the Telecom office - By my senior year of high school, my mom was working at the University of the South. They offer a variety of summertime positions with priority given to staff relatives. The summer after I graduated high school, I worked in the Telecommunications office at the University. This was one of my favorite part time jobs. I was given many projects to complete and was allowed to direct myself most of the time. I learned how to repair and clean dorm telephones. I also drove around to the various dorms before summer programs began to check all the phones and lines to make sure everything was working properly. Probably my favorite part of the job was when I got to act as operator for the campus telephone system. Answering questions and directing calls was such fun, and I had plenty of time to read when I wasn't answering the phone.
  • Boone Tavern employee - Berea College (where I went directly after high school) has a student work program. Upon enrollment, each student is assigned an on-campus job. I was placed at the Boone Tavern (the hotel/restaurant on campus) and was introduced to waiting tables for the first time. I began as a server's assistant (refilling drinks, bussing tables, and serving spoonbread) and eventually became a server and occasional hostess. The best part about this job was its lucrative salary. Because I had a full scholarship, none of my money went towards paying of my bills (and I was paid much higher than normal server wages) and we were also allowed to keep all of our tips. During my first year of college, I actually made money instead of losing it.
  • Admission's Office Assistant - After my freshman year, I returned home and returned to Sewanee for summer work. This time I was placed in the Admission's Office (the telecom position had been turned into an internship). This was a basic office job: lots of filing and copying and errand running. My favorite part about this job was when I organized student files - I loved reading essays and resumes and counselor comments for all the incoming students.
  • Pearl's SA/server/bartender - When I decided to take a semester off before heading to Boyce, I knew I had to find a job that would bring in lots of cash. I applied at Pearl's with my minimal experience at Boone Tavern and ended up working at a great restaurant. I spent so many hours in that hot kitchen making pretty desserts and running random errands for Michael and learning how to form friendships with people with completely different perspectives on life. This job taught me how to work hard, but also how to relax and relate realistically with all sorts of people.
  • California Pizza Kitchen "everything" - Last, but not least, my current job. I have been at CPK for over three years now (the longest amount of time at a job besides babysitting). I have gone from being the shy takeout girl that never talked to anybody to being a lead server and trainer. There are times I get frustrated with management or policies or circumstances, but it's a great place to work. I love the people I work with, love the food, and love the steady income it provides.
There are my seven official jobs. I must not forget to mention my favorite occupation, however - wife and homemaker. It is a true blessing to serve God and my husband by taking care of the details of our home and finances. I also look forward to the day when I can add "mother" to my resume. And now, speaking of work, I must get ready for CPK tonight.

Mary Catherine

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Extreme Frustration

So I have been trying for the past hour or so to make a very nicely formatted post displaying pictures of our apartment. However, either I am very bad at formatting or blogger is not user friendly. Whatever the cause, this post will not be extremely aesthetically pleasing, but it will display what I want to display. Enjoy this glimpse into our little home.

Here is our living room, complete with our handmade coffee table from Marshall's brother, Scott, and our brand new couch. We got a great deal on it from Value City Furniture.

We were very blessed to get such a great apartment. God truly provided in the search for a place to live - I had only 4 days to secure a location before Marshall drove down from Wisconsin with all of his things to start his new job. We got a great deal in a great location. This curio shelf was one of my favorite little quirks about the apartment when I first visited.

Here is our kitchen. This is probably my favorite room in the apartment. It always feels so warm and welcoming and "home" like, even when there are piles of dirty dishes to wash. I love having my own kitchen and having the opportunity to hone my cooking and baking skills. Marshall appreciates the fruits of my labor as well.

These two are our bedroom. I really love the colors we chose. They are simple and peaceful, and I know we will be able to coordinate them into a larger house when we move.

I also love the colors that we ended up using in our bathroom. The greenish blue tile on the walls makes for an interesting color combination, but if you ignore that, it's quite nice.

Finally, here is our office/guest bedroom. The top picture is Marshall's desk full of his little trinkets and random tools and the bottom one displays my little corner of the room. We've been to the zoo a couple times in the past year, and I absolutely love the giraffes, hence the giraffe decorations.

I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into our life. If I keep this up, I may have an actual, real live blog before too long!

Friday, May 30, 2008

And a year later...

Well, fortunately I never let anyone know about this blog, so no one has been eagerly waiting for nearly 12 months for an update. Let's try this again, shall we?

Things are going pretty much the same here in our part of the world. Both Marshall and I have received promotions at work. He is now a system administrator at Print Fulfillment Services and I am a certified service trainer at California Pizza Kitchen.

We are still loving our church family at Highview and enjoying serving in the pre-school ministry. In addition to teaching the three year old Sunday School class together, I serve as the coordinator for the infant rooms. Basically, I make sure there are people there every Sunday to hold crying babies and change dirty diapers. I am also really looking forward to VBS in a week; it's always been one of my favorite things about summer.

Speaking of school, I am now a senior! It is very exciting indeed to realize that I will be done with college in less than a year. As for my plans after that, I know that I will not be advancing my degree immediately. Other than that, I'm open to staying at CPK for a little while longer or maybe finding a more full-time job. We'll just see what God planned when we get there.

Well, I certainly have every intention of keeping up to date with this whole blog thing. We'll see how it goes. But for now, it's time for dinner and a nice evening at home with the husband.


Monday, July 9, 2007

First Post!!!11!

Ok, well, here I go...

Most of you probably know what's going on with us recently, but if you don't, here's the abridged version.

Marshall and I were married on November 18, 2006. We honeymooned in Chicago, and then returned to Louisville, KY, where I am currently enrolled at Boyce College of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. I have been here since January 2005, and I am working towards my Bachelor of Arts in Biblical and Theological Studies. After we got engaged, Marshall found a job with Print Fulfillment Services as an IT technician and moved to Louisville in February 2006. I continue to work part-time as a server at California Pizza Kitchen.

In December, after many months of searching, we joined Highview Baptist Church (East Campus). We are involved in an Adult Bible Fellowship Class with other couples in their 20s and early 30s. We are the "babies" of the class, but it is such a blessing to have fellowship with others who are a little bit further ahead in their marriages and careers. I am also an assistant teacher in the three year old Sunday School class, and Marshall helps me out quite a bit (and maybe more than he really wants...though I have a feeling they are growing on him :-D).

Other than that, we lead a fairly simple life. Most evenings are spent at home relaxing - reading, watching T.V., playing games, or going for walks.

It is about time for me to tear myself away from the computer; I have spent my entire morning online (mostly paying bills and whatnot...but with an occasional peek at Facebook here and there) and there are groceries to purchase, dishes to wash, and clothes to fold. Goodbye for now!

Mary Catherine