Tag: Work

Weekend Links

“Oh, it’s delightful to have ambitions. I’m so glad I have such a lot. And there never seems to be any end to them– that’s the best of it. Just as soon as you attain to one ambition you see another one glittering higher up still. It does make life so interesting.”
― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Hi kittens! It’s been a hectic couple of weeks and I have much to catch you up on, besides (hopefully) continuing the new and improved posting schedule.

To sum up, just before my holiday I got a very interesting and compelling new job offer as a marketing consultant…and I decided to take it. I handed in my month’s notice, which was very graciously accepted, and right now my major work priorities are to get as many projects successfully wrapped as I can to make my handover as smooth a transition as I can. It’s taking a lot of energy and frankly much of the good and relaxation of my break has gone straight out the window, but I’m nervously excited for this new opportunity. Full post about that coming up soon, I’m sure!

In the meantime, share any big news worth spreading of your own in the comments and enjoy your links. Monday ho!

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This week’s Not a Drill!

Mormon feminist humor warning but if that’s your thing, I died laughing because they picked the “argument” that literally makes me tear my hair out! I’ll share mine if you share yours.

And speaking of dying, what doesn’t David Attenborough make better?

Headline of the week.

In case you didn’t hear First Lady Michelle Obama’s thematically powerful, rhetorically excellent, and resounding speech this week, now is the time.

Gripping viewing.

Here. If this doesn’t make you hope for the human race, nothing will.

Anyone else tired of hearing how various women sound criticized or critiqued constantly? Not what they are saying, but the actual way all 3.5 billion of our voices sound, apparently? Me too. Though I now long for someone to label me an improbissima fema.

Big announcement from SDS fave brand Bite Beauty!

I have unintentionally started a system similar to the “bullet journal,” which I am suddenly seeing absolutely everywhere. But after reading this summary piece on Buzzfeed, my To Do system could clearly do with an upgrade!

And finally, my stress has had an uptick since I got back from holiday (obviously) and so my poor nails–long victims of nibbling or picking in times of bad stress management–have taken a beating. I’ve slapped on my first coat of polish in weeks to help repair damages (I’m more likely to notice if I’m messing up something pretty) and am trying to gather some inspiration to stay strong.

 

Weekend Links

“A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.”
― Francis Bacon

Another massive week at work, a bunch of freelance pitches sent off, another couple of potential media opportunities on the horizon I want to explore…capped off with a somewhat lazy weekend. Jeff is getting over a bad cold he’s been dealing with for two weeks and I’m battling not to catch it from him. Consequently, not nearly enough housework gets done.

In the meantime, more SDS writing is heading your way soon, just working out some new editorial calendars and topics, aren’t you lucky! Here are your links, tell me what you got up to this week.

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Save the banana!

Not enough counseling in the world, I fear.

When I marvel that medieval or ancient things are rediscovered after being lost…I sometimes have to remember the alternative. (h/t Xarissa)

Slay, queen.

Almost too darn pretty to be real.

Who really drives the luxury market?

Thoughts on the future of Twitter.

Wow…oops?

Take that, stereotypes. I do morbidly like the idea, though, that more wars may have been fought because non-reigning royal spouses needed something to do, bless them.

I have learned this week that there is an entire subsection of architecture built around rage and revenge. How on earth did I not know this?! This is, if you’ll forgive the pun, right up my alley!

You know what they say about big hair

As an owner of a RBF, this appealed.

Pal and Friend of the Blog Andrea from This New View suddenly moved to China a couple of months ago. Luckily for all and sundry, she’s writing about it!

Saturday Links

Only Robinson Crusoe had everything done by Friday. 
~Author Unknown

Let’s face it, this regular feature might move permanently to Saturday if recent trends are anything to go. Anyway, excuse the delay. Another long week at work has resulted in a tiny bit of brain fry and a weekend is required to clear out some of the cobwebs. Here are your links, add your own internet finds for the week in the comments, and let me know what you’re getting up to!

Writing tips from one who knows.

I snort laughed.

Keep and eye on what’s green.

I knew multiple people who ran the London Marathon this year, alas none that dressed up.

Arguments began for the Supreme Court regarding the legality of same sex marriage this week and I’m going to be following the story closely. Living in a country where gay marriage is very much legal (with nary a hint of the apocalypse, I note), it’s interesting to watch this debate playing out from somewhat afar, as strongly as I feel on the subject.

Postmodern Jukebox has done it again.

Not okay, guys! A bridge way too far!

Woof, there’s a lot to unpack here.

Another place to visit!

A helpful guide for the confused.

The general election is next week here in Britain (America, let’s get on this, k? Two year campaigns are ridiculous) and we are preparing with the proper seriousness of thought.

Terribly amused by this site, currently taking over my Facebook feed. I might not always cooperate in photos, but it’s only a year off!

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Saturday Links

“There is no time for cut-and-dried monotony. There is time for work. And time for love. That leaves no other time.”
― Coco Chanel

Kittens, this was the week my new manager came onboard. And she’s lovely! She’s also wonderfully experienced and highly knowledgeable, and I know I’m going to like working with and for her tremendously. There’s a lot of structure she can put in place to support the projects we work on and I’m really looking forward to helping and learning.

Enough gushing! It was also a massively busy week since two of our directors were out of the country and one worked a partial week, so a lot of the onboarding orientation fell to me. There were also the usual schedule changes (construction is a fickle business, and luxury construction doubly so) and a lot of late hours. All for a good cause, though. There are a lot of new projects coming up that are partially daunting since I’m having to do work that I’ve never done before, but pretty exhilarating for the same reason.

Here are your links, tell me what you’re getting up to this weekend in the comments!

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Journalism is getting weird, guys.

All joking aside…debt. Definitely debt.

Mad Men is winding down, so let’s look at some beautiful vintage ads and dream of far of destinations, shall we?

Supporting dance opportunities for girls of color, hell yes!

Just in case (h/t Katarina)

Now that Game of Thrones is back, in defense of Sansa Stark.

Derelict pubs throughout London, some with amazing historical backgrounds.

The kids, they are alright.

Pakistan Fashion Week is giving me life and I think we could all use some more embroidery.

When I get some free time (she laughed darkly to herself).

Saturday Links

“If you’ve done 6 impossible things this morning, why not round it off with breakfast at Milliways, the Restaurant at the End of the Universe?”
― Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

A day late but hopefully not a dollar/pound short. My week consisted of a series of increasingly difficult tasks that at one point veered far out of realm of probability before I managed to drag them back. And I was not alone, the whole of the office team was well and truly snowed under and tempers were high, eyes suspiciously bright, and everyone was ready to burst. In short, a weekend was needed. Desperately. Here are your links and tell me what you’re getting up to!

At least London has decided it's spring!
At least London has decided it’s spring!

On my never ending quest to build a work wardrobe that is functional, easy to wear, well edited, and doesn’t break the bank…I’ve thought about this question more than once.

Give the woman a standing slow clap.

I’m a fan of the declutter and “less is more” movement, but this piece had me rolling with laughter. Let’s face it, we all know someone who takes it stuff like this too far. Heck, Gwenyth Paltrow has built a brand on it!

Lovely.

I want to go to all of there.

What a find!

I shan’t trouble you with the story of how this came into my presence, but I thought all and sundry needed to know it existed.

A long history of courtesan culture in Japan featuring beautiful kimonos, the male gaze, the rise of the shogunate, and more.

Childhood restored!

If you build it…someone somewhere will want to keep on building it.

Sometimes I don’t think we comprehend how incomprehensible it was, not that long ago, that practically everyone in the developed world (and a surprising number of the undeveloped world) would have personal phones. That we carry around with us. In our pockets.

Bring these back, I want to brunch in one of them.

Of Kids and Dogs

“Grown ups are complicated creatures, full of quirks and secrets.”
― Roald Dahl

Inspired by a comment chat with the lovely and thoughtful Grace from Culture Life, on one of the weekend links.

I’m turning 29 this year, Jeff is turning 30. In four months we’ll celebrate our 6th wedding anniversary. Depending on who you ask we should have between 0 and 3 children by now. Some people are amazed we married as young as we did, some feel the need to caution us about our dwindling fertility.

Living in Britain means that the latter is a lot less common than when we lived in Utah when multiple people, including total strangers, would ask me about our reproductive plans every week, but it still happens simply because we’re married. It’s a natural progression in the social expectation. In Britain it’s not unusual to partner up but wait until you’re ready to have kids to marry, to have kids before marrying, or some other variation. It’s a lot more more live-and-let-live than the US is in a lot of ways, but family is a topic of conversation for a lot of people I know, particularly working women.

I’ve married a man who definitely wants kids, and who decided at the ripe old age of 23 that he definitely wants to have them with me. (Luckily for all concerned, he still does.) Which means that before we married we had a lot of frank talks on the subject and have maintained a pretty open dialog about the whole thing throughout our married life. One of the things we talk about the most lately is the financial realities of families for people like us. We also talk about about getting a dog.

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It sounds like I’m getting off topic here, but I promise I have a point.

A while back I was speaking to a whip smart agent who works at a major global sales firm. The woman is very nice and always well put together, and I enjoy working with her. She mentioned that she had a dog, a breed that I like, and I asked how she and her husband managed to look after a pet since Jeff and I were interested in having one down the line somewhere. It turned out that she has a dog sitter look after her pup. Every single work day. Her dog needed a nanny.

And lest you think I’m telling this story to make fun of her, I assure you, I’m not. It’s just a reality for a lot of pet owners. Pets take care and if you want a pet you either need to provide it yourself, or ensure someone else is on hand to do it when you can’t.

The parallel to children might seem unflattering towards the latter, but I think it’s a fair one. London is an obscenely expensive city and when I look at my colleagues and coworkers, there are only two options I see for how they manage it. They either 1) make enough money for one parent to stay–or more likely work from–home with the kid(s), meaning they make an awful lot, or 2) they have help. And to make the second option work, that usually requires plenty of money again to be able to afford said help!

Getting this job effectively doubled our income, which has already been an incredibly positive shift for us. I’m still freelancing on the side, but now if we’re smart, we can pay off our remaining student loans within two years. I can’t begin to tell you what a relief it is to say that, because debt (even obtained in a good cause) is terrifying. However, we’re still a few years away from even thinking seriously about having kids. And in that time, we estimate we’d have to double our income again to afford a child because even though we’re bringing in twice as much, it’s not even close to allow one of us to stay home past a maternity/paternity leave–much less afford a nanny five days a week.

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I know some people, in countries all around the world, who can afford to have and maintain a family on a single income. I know far, far more who can’t, and the trend is very much towards the latter from my generation. Wages have not kept up with cost of living and–in spite of what a lot of Boomers like to argue to the contrary–the evidence is that people my age are pretty frugal. Jeff and I sure as hell are! Like a lot of millennials, in spite of working hard (two jobs in my case) we’re swimming in debt which delays a lot of other financial considerations like buying property and cars (two things the American economy has depended on for half a century), investing…and having kids.

Spawning is a complicated topic for me. I’ve written several times about the fact that I’ve never felt a primal urge to have children like I know many women do. In fact, I dislike infants and babies intensely, silly or not childbirth actively frightens me, and human pregnancy looks to my eyes as if we should have tried one or two other evolutionary models before deciding on the one we’ve landed on. Add to the mix my slow and painful breakup with a religion that couches the female experience almost entirely in the language of motherhood, often (in my personal opinion) to the detriment of nearly all other possible life choices/realities for women, and you get some pretty conflicted views.

But financial issues conflict it even more. We won’t have our debt paid off until we’re in our early 30s, and I don’t want to have children in my late 30s. My mother did and even though it was the right choice for her (plus my little sister is pretty darn cute), it’s not an experience I want to repeat. Which means that our window to consider children shrinks every year. I’m personally fine with that, but I work hard to make sure Jeff and I are on the same page about it. We are. We literally cannot afford them.

And I don’t think we’re unusual. In fact, I think we’re the increasing norm.

Weigh in with your thoughts and experiences, kittens. I’m curious to hear them.