Long Time No See!

Hi there!  I know, it’s been forever since I last posted.  I’ve had a very crazy few months work-wise.  Basically, I’ve just started a new full time position.  For the first time in years, I have an actual routine!  I’m hoping to be able to work on this blog more, as well as get back to the things that inspired me to begin with. 

Hello August!

Wow, July went by fast.

Here are some things I’m looking forward to in August:

  • August 1-4: My uncle & his wife & their new baby are coming to visit! They live near Washington DC & we usually only see them once a year or so (usually around the holidays).  I haven’t met my new cousin yet, so its super exciting!
  • Their visit also coincides with one of the biggest festivals in our area, the Speidie Fest & Balloon Rally.  The Speidie Fest celebrates our local specialty, the speidie.  Speidies are cubed marinated meat eaten as subs or sandwiches.  We have concerts every day (B+ usually).  This year Night Ranger & LeAnn Rimes are coming.  Also, Tobey from Pretty Little Liars.  I’m excited to be running in the festival 5k this too.  It’s going to be a family affair, as my mom, brother, uncle, & aunt are all running it too.
  • August 11 will be a busy day.  I’m running another 5k.  That race will benefit my coach’s daughter who has cancer.  After the race, my brother & I will be going to see Blake Shelton.
  • The rest of the month will be crazy busy with work.  My entire company does the corporate catering at a big golf tournament.  Tim McGraw is playing a show on the first night.  Right after the golf tournament (I’m talking the day after!), my unit heads an hour north to do the backstage catering & riders for all of our state fair grandstand performers.  Its all very fun but also tiring.

I think its all going to pass in a whirlwind!  & then it will be September!

July Check In

So far July has been an interesting & positive month. Things are happening! I’ve been busy, which I prefer! Here are some of highlights (& maybe a couple low points):

  • July 1st marked what could have been one of the low points. My family went out to celebrate my brother’s birthday & had one of the most terrible meals ever. 8 of us had to cram around a tiny little table because the restaurant only had small tables & wouldn’t let us combine any. The music was super loud. & we found hairs in 2 meals (mine & my boyfriend’s). & to top it all off, the restaurant didn’t discount or take anything off the bill. It could have been a really terrible experience but I think it actually goes down as a funny anecdote. My grandma & I kept looking at each other across the table & laughing. Afterwards, we went to my grandparents’ house (as usual) for cake & presents & in keeping with the theme of the night, the power went out due to a bad storm. Memories were made & it is one of those dinners that will go down in history.
  • On July 3rd, I attended a picnic with my Toastmasters club. Normally Toastmasters is a pretty formal club & we don’t necessarily socialize very much, so I always enjoy when we do. Its not Toastmasters without speeches, though, & we heard a particularly great speech from member Kristy.
  • July 4th is not just America’s birthday, but also my brother’s! Most years we have his celebration on that day, but this year we had it later in the week. Instead, my boyfriend & I attended a picnic at his aunt’s house. We had a great time!
  • On July 6th, (I promise I’m not telling about every day this month!) I helped cater a retirement party clam bake. It was really hot & kindof uncomfortable, honestly. The clients had an ice cream truck come though, which was neat!
  • July 10th & 11th marked some great beginnings & getting back to some of my roots. I attended a volunteer orientation for the local hospital. I’m very excited to start there (tomorrow actually!), but more on that in a little bit. The 11th was a busy day for me. I went on my first shopping trip as part of the Red Cross shoppers program. As part of the shoppers program, I grocery shop for house bound clients. It felt good to help & my client was so appreciative! After shopping, I was off to help run the finish line for the runner’s club. I had missed the running community. It was a great way to spend the day.
  • The next day was just as busy! My brother was lucky enough to win season passes to a concert venue about 2 hours away from us. One of the shows that was included was Victoria Justice & Big Time Rush. He decided to take my 8 year old sister & I tagged along. We had a lot of fun. She slept over at my house after too, which she hadn’t done before. In the morning, we all went to a festival downtown for a little bit, until I had to go into work to cater a wedding. All in all I had a great time with my siblings.
  • On July 15th, I went to a local minor league baseball game with some fellow employees & my boyfriend. It was the first one we had been to of the summer & sweltering. We did get some nice breezes sometimes though, & it was good to spend some time outside doing something a little different.
  • I had an appointment with what I like to think of as the hospital volunteer guidance counselor on the 16th. I felt like I got a lot of out the appointment, besides just my placement. I am going to be volunteering in the retail pharmacy (using my pharmacy background) one day and on a patient care floor the other day. Part of me is excited to go back to my pharmacy roots. I’m most excited to get new experiences on the patient floor, however. Honestly, I would love to work at this hospital, if the whole food service & catering thing doesn’t work out. Well, actually the food service is what’s supposed to be the fall back.
  • The last few days have been busy with work. I worked for 3 different accounts, doing 3 different kinds of things with varying hours. I like the variety though.

    Oh& big news! My boyfriend’s baby nephew was born on Thursday July 18. Still waiting excitedly to meet him!
     

Toastmasters Thursday!

Image

Usually I write about my Toastmasters meeting right when I get home, but this week I’m a day late.  Also, I normally just talk about the word of the day but this week I’m going to talk about table topics, too.  So without any further delay:

  • The word of the day is ubiquitous, meaning existing or being everywhere at the same time, constantly.  This was not a new word to me, as I studied Latin in high school, but it was good to be reminded of it.

Yesterday’s meeting also marked my first time as Table Topics master.  Table topics is one of my favorite parts of Toastmasters meetings.  Participants give short 1-2 minute impromptu speeches on the topics given by the Table Topics master.

I had a great time coming up with topics for the meeting. We had a historic 3 ice breaker meeting, so I kept with the theme of firsts.  I asked, “what was a memorable first job you had (or talk about your first day at your current job).”   Our member gave a great, speech about working as a pianist at a Korean church & having trouble knowing which verse they were on because of the language barrier.  He ended up winning the table topic speech ribbon of the night.  I posed the next question to a veteran whose actual icebreaker I had missed.  I asked her to recall some of her icebreaker speech & to give it in a shorter version.  The last question I posed was not on the topic of firsts, but rather about “on this day in history.”  July 17 was the day the Romanovs were murdered.  I’ve always had a fascination about them.  It could just be because I watched Anastasia a few too many times growing up but I think its more than that (I’m also fascinated by her younger brother & all the precautions they had to take because of his hemophilia, by Rasputin, about Anastasia herself, and just all the glitz of being members of a royal family).  The question actually asked was, “Is there a historical era that particularly fascinates you & why.”

So dear readers, I encourage you to use the word ubiquitous more often & perhaps urge you to leave a comment answering the table topics of the day.

Find Your Voice Summer Workshop!

Find Your Voice

 

The last few months & this summer are all about me trying new, fun things.  I’m trying to take on different challenges, & just be more active in general.  I’m particularly excited about the Find Your Voice workshop at rukristin.com.  It is a free eight week class that is all about embracing, finding and practicing with your storytelling voice.  I’m excited to increase some writing skills, start scrapbooking, & see everything else the community is going to be doing.  I will be sharing on mainly  on twitter (using my main account @helenleeeee), instagram (helenleeeee).  You can follow along using the hashtag, #findyourvoice and in the comments at rukristin.com.  If you’re interested in joining in, you can also join the facebook group.  Don’t forget to share the excitement with all your friends!

Word of the Day Wednesday!

It really behooves me to tell you about today’s word of the day.  As you may have guessed, it is behoove.  According to Merriam-Webster.com, behoove means,  to be necessary, proper, or advantageous for. 

At Toastmasters, one of the objectives of the word of the day (besides expanding our vocabulary) is to use it throughout the meeting.  I always find it a major triumph when I can work it in!  Often enough, I get excited to use it when the word is first introduced, but then when its my turn to speak, I forget it.  Anyway, I did manage to use behoove today (twice even!).  My role today was that of evaluator & I said that, “as an evaluator, it behooves me to critique your speech. ”  I found some other good uses of behoove in the comments on the dictionary site.  Here’s one from a user called Advanced course English Words, Slang and expressions: “under the bad circumstances it behooves all of us to stay calm.”  (that was one of my favorites because it reminds me of the “keep calm & carry on” posters).  Another user, Shane Bales, said that, “it behooved me to look it up,” which gave me a little chuckle.

I’m glad I was reminded about the word behoove this week & hope to use it more often.

Word of the Day Wednesday!

toastmasters

The word of the day at Toastmasters today was copious, meaning abundant in supply or quantity.  Synonyms are abundant, plentiful, profuse, ample, rich, & generous.  It was really great that this word was chosen today because I gave my third speech.  I talked about letters & happy mail for just over seven minutes.  It was a fun speech to give & a really easy topic to talk about.  I should have been able to use “copious” several times in my speech, but I got nervous & forgot.  Something to keep in mind for next time.