Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘fire’

This was originally posted on my friend Lynn Hidy’s website Up Your TeleSales on May 31, 2010.

Who Will You Be When The Pilgrimage Is Over?

Rose Niekrewicz-Winters is a friend of mine, I met when we were both on a bus trip with a band in Ireland…. ‘nuf said. Instead of telling you, I’ve asked Rose to share her pilgrimage and thoughts about it:

It’s been quite a long pilgrimage.  I’ve traveled through the past year and a half searching for a job.  Not just any job, but “the” job.  I know, I know – in this economy many would say I’m a fool to NOT just take any job.  What those people don’t realize is that if I just take any old job and then if it doesn’t work out and they lay me off, it could jeopardize my future unemployment status.  The bottom line is that I’m picky.

Who

Some may say it’s all about who you know.  I’ve found that sometimes that just doesn’t matter.  I have over 600 friends on Facebook, over 200 members in the motorcycle club, I’m in, thousands of hits to my blog, piles of former clients….  The list goes on and on.  Nobody seems to know anyone who is hiring.  I keep my ear to the ground because all it takes is 1 “right person” to drop your name at the right time.

Who I will be at the end of the journey is hopefully someone gainfully employed and happy at my job.  Push that angle aside and I’ll also be a person who took the time to get to know hundreds of people in the process and did good things for others along the way.

What

What did I do to keep my sanity?  I helped others.  I spent time working on a charity poker run for a girl with optic nerve cancer.  I helped some friends whose house burned down rebuild their lives.  I volunteered to help do work to open up the Double H “Hole in the Woods” Ranch in Lake Luzerne, NY.  I helped out a friend who was in a motorcycle accident. I supported a friend whose daughter has leukemia and tried to help her spread the word about a fundraiser for her.  I tell friends that I may have an empty bank account and can’t financially contribute to everything I’d like, but I do have time and a bank full of good karma!

When

When did I find the time?  Being out of work many people assume you’ve got all the time in the world to run around and help them with their errands.  There is nothing further from the truth.  I look at my schedule lately and wonder “when will I find the time to work when I get that new job?”  When you get extra time in your life, life decides to throw things at you to fill the time!

Where

Where do you meet the people?  Anywhere and Everywhere!  I talk to people every chance I get.  I make friends at a local coffee shop, on vacation, at concerts, at networking events, online, through other friends….  I keep saying it only takes talking to the one right person to land that perfect job….

How

How I’ve dealt with being out of work so long is a common question.  The answer is by keeping a positive attitude.  I always keep in mind that nobody wants to hire a complainer who’s crying in their beer all the time.  So I’ve been careful not to be that person. At the end of the How Far Are You Willing to Travel article in the A Chip Off the Block newsletter some questions were asked.

How would you like it to be instead?

Obviously I’d like to be employed.  I’d love it to be with a solid company that’s willing to recognize and pay for a quality employee.  Those $10/hour job calls just frustrate me to the point of asking “Did you even read my resume??”

How open to new, sometimes crazy sounding ideas are you?

I started my job search very focused on a sales job.  Later I reflected on my career and realized I was selling myself short.  True I’ve held many sales positions as of late, but I also have done marketing, data processing, management, etc.  So pigeon holing myself was a horrible thing to do!  I later realized that opening myself up to other markets and other professions was a great idea and now I tell people that I’m keeping my options open and I’d love to hear their ideas, no matter how crazy they may sound.

Just last night a good friend told me that another mutual friend counts on me for my ideas.  Apparently I’m her “think tank” and I never knew it.  I’m analytical and try to think three steps ahead and my friend doesn’t normally think past the first step.  She let’s things unfold as they happen.  I’ve learned in life to think about the future because your actions today can make or break things.

How much effort will you put in?

I work hard so I can play hard.  Everyone likes to make money.  They’d be lying if they said otherwise.  I like to do a job in the most efficient way and get it out of the way.  I put in the effort to get a job done right the first time so it doesn’t have to be revised 4 times therefore wasting valuable “play time.”

How does this fit into your goals?

This all fits into my goals.  My goals are to work hard so I can afford to play hard.  I love to travel (in fact that’s how Lynn of Up Your Telesales and I met and became friends), ride motorcycles, attend concerts, etc.  All of that is tough to do when you’re unemployed.  So I’m hoping my positive attitude and outgoing personality I’m putting out there will pay off with the job of my dreams!

How will you keep going when it gets tough?

That’s a loaded question if I ever saw one!  Things have gotten tough.  Life is tough.  The question is will you choose to have a “Whoa is me” attitude or a positive attitude?  Attitude is half the battle!  Times get tough and somehow it motivates me to work harder and put in even more effort than I had prior.

In closing the How Far Are You Willing To Travel article said:  “It’s your pilgrimage so there are no right or wrong answers – plus if you’re happy with the path you’re on, continue!”

I may not always be happy with the path I’m on, but I’m always aware of the next crossroad and am very aware that my life can be very different based on the choices I make.  All events shape the outcome of future events.  Just like Marty and Doc discussed in Back to the Future It’s all about the “Space Time Continuum”. Make every moment count.

Please comment and subscribe.

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

While brainstorming about what to write blogs about, I wanted to find a way for my readers to get to know some of the awesome people who I know.  The best way I could come up with was an interview series.

Meet my friend KristineKristine is a great gal who I met through our motorcycle club No Destination.  Since we’ve met she’s proven to be a great friend who is one of the most generous people I know, who can give un-biased advice when it’s needed.  (I know, I know run-on sentence….)  So… without further ado – here is Kristine.

Kristine

Name: Kristine Choma

Age: MYOB 🙂

Location: Upstate NY

Hails from: Queens NY

Relationship Status: In one

Children: 1 daughter Alicia & My Pom Bubba

Blog Link: http://shouldabeenablonde.wordpress.com

Occupation: Senior litigation specialist

What is the most challenging part of your job? Wishing I had my old job back with the special investigations unit.

You’ve been through quite a few tragedies in your life.  What’s gotten you through them?
Cases & cases of Michelob Ultra 🙂   Seriously, I credit my fighting spirit, I’m a scrapper & I can be stubborn as hell. When I went through  the Mold House chaos I was determined not be victimized; to raise public awareness about Toxic Black Mold; the fact there are no penalties for sellers of real property when they lie on disclosure statements; that Home Inspectors have no accountability for the info or lack thereof contained in their reports; lastly to have laws & some kind of standards enacted by the Dept of Health to protect the public. I was also determined not to perpetrate the same fraud I was a victim of on other people.  I lost everything I owned including a house I had only owned for 11 months before realizing it was slowly killing me & my daughter. This is a really long story as my battles were many w/multiple different agencies from the real estate agent who was related to & helped the sellers disguise the true condition of this home to the I.R.S. & lasted almost 2 years.

This is the Mold House after I "decorated" it for Halloween (in August) to vent my frustration. The tape says "Caution Do Not Enter & DANGER!"

For the house fire once again my fighting spirit, stubbornness & refusal to be victimized got me through. However, my knowledge of insurance probably contributed to saving the day in spite of All State’s attempted concealment of benefits we were entitled too & their claims handling philosophy of delay, deny, defend & then delay some more.  The beautiful thing about the fire was that so many friends came forward to help me out, especially an old elementary school friend (Big Shout out to Kim to whom I am eternally grateful); who gave us furniture, clothing, kitchen stuff etc etc to help get back to normal during the first couple of months while All State attempted to not pay our claim. The beauty of my many friends generous spirits was that it enabled me once we did start getting our claim paid is that I was able to Pay It Forward w/3 different families. I helped a man & his daughter starting over after a divorce. I helped a young woman & her daughter re-establish themselves after an abusive relationship; & a very young couple w/an infant & 3-year-old son re-establish themselves after they were exposed to Toxic Mold.

What was left of my '06 Road Guide after the house fire.

How do you manage being the mother of a rebellious teenager?
I don’t know.  Am I managing?  I just keep praying the day she snaps out of it is tomorrow.  But truly things have gotten better with her; she is slowly growing up.

What’s your favorite color? Don’t have just one; but Teal, (not aqua – teal like a peacock’s feathers) Crimson, & a paint color called Cougar are among my fave’s

What got you interesting in motorcycle riding? It’s all my Granddaddy, Charlie’s (pronounced Chahhlie) fault.  When I was a little girl I couldn’t wait to visit him in North Carolina. He would make me ‘beg him’ to take me for rides on his fully dressed Road King & I loved it. I knew he wanted to give me the ride as much as I did despite his teasing & pretending to be too busy.  I loved hanging out with him in ‘the Motorcycle House’. (Yes, his Harley had its very own house) & watch him wash, polish, change the oil etc. etc. while sneaking me sips of his beer when the ‘adults’ weren’t looking.  I loved watching his friends ride up to ask his help & opinion on how to fix what was ailing their bikes & the camaraderie they shared. The best is when my Mother or Ree-Ree (my Grandmother) would catch him letting me sip on his Schlitz. It was so funny watching him play innocent when he knew he was busted, but trying to get away with it anyway. Granddaddy was the best & I miss him terribly.

Chahhlie!

I know you have your own motorcycle license, so why don’t you ride your own bike?Actually getting my license taught me the huge responsibility & risk one takes when operating a motorcycle. Anyone who does not have a license doesn’t realize that the smallest thing like a pebble or twig in the road can cause you to drop your bike. After surviving a motorcycle accident while I was a passenger shortly after getting my license, I had to admit to myself I don’t have enough hours behind the handle bars to ride my own.  We went down because the transmission seized & the rear wheel locked. If I had been operating that bike when it happened, I would not have been able to control ‘the down’ & I’d probably be dead.

What’s your favorite destination to ride to? No destination – anywhere. So long as I’m riding.

What’s your favorite vacation destination? Don’t have one of those either.  I usually va-kay w/my family in Pennsylvania or North Carolina.  I do enjoy going to Laconia every year though & Puerto Rico was great!

Kristine in Puerto Rico

You have the cutest Pomeranian dog.  Tell us how wonderful Bubba is….
What can I say? Bubba is Bubba-licious. J  He truly is a one –owner Pom (a trait of the breed)  he follows me everywhere I go no matter where (except in the pool – Bubba don’t play dat.) He is a marvelous watch dog that never fails to alert me when the doorbell rings; or a door opens or closes. Doors opening & closing & door bells ringing mean people are coming & since he is so very protective of me he wants me to know people are on the way. He is very well socialized; loves all people & other animals.  He’s a big snuggle bear & loves to lay w/me & be petted & give me kisses.

Bubba-Licious!

I know you love to cook.  What is your favorite meal to cook?
THANKSGIVING!!!!!!!!  I love to cook big meals & there is no bigger meal than Thanksgiving.

You’re known as the 50/50 Goddess….  What is the biggest pot you’ve ever had?
Well in excess of $1200.00

The 50/50 Goddess Hard at Work!

Who is the most interesting celebrity you’ve ever met?
That would be Sully Erna & the band Godsmack.  I won a contest w/Channel 103.1 (J.K. Rox) It was by far the most rockin’ experience of my life. I got to ride on their tour bus, hang out backstage & get autographs & then have dinner with them. It was amazing.

Godsmack! Look how skinny I was.


What 3 things could you not live without?
Makeup
My Road Glide – I may not ride my own; but I own my own.  Lol
My boots.

My Road Glide

What if anything do you collect?
Sandals & boots; peacocks; & art by James Christensen.

Which is your favorite James Christensen?
I don’t have just one favorite.  I love everything James Christensen does. ‘Poofy Guy on a String’ was the 1st Christensen I ever purchased.  When I bought Poofy Guy; I was going through the Mold House drama. When I read the description that Poofy Guy’s wardrobe represented the baggage of a life time it touched me in my soul. Next came Twilight; then The Bride;  Gettin’ it Right; Superstitions; A Place of Her Own & Fairy Tales came last. A Place of Her Own is my 2nd favorite.  I came across that one right after the fire & a lot of people thought I resembled the woman in the picture. But there was so much about the painting itself that reminded me of things I’d owned but lost in the fire, or to the Mold House, I had to have it.

A Place of Her Own ~ James Christensen

Poofy Guy on a String ~ James Christensen

What is the biggest misconception about you?
That I’m Italian.

What do you like to spend money on?
Sandals, boots, Halloween Decorations & James Christensen’s art.

The house decorated for Halloween.

What’s your favorite board game?
Nightmare. It’s actually an interactive video board game. Creepy stuff, so naturally I luv it.

What would be the title of your auto-biography?
The Luckiest of the Unlucky

You were recently injured.  What’s the diagnosis?
Three herniated discs in my Lumbar Spine w/nerve impingement, & lesions of the sciatic nerve.

Read Full Post »

Many of you know that my FAVORITE meal of all time is duck.

6.75 lbs. of deliciousness....

Yesterday was my 4 year anniversary with Michael.

Together for 4 years!!

We started a tradition the year we met.  For Valentine’s Day, our anniversary, and my birthday he makes me a duck dinner.

Michael hard at work cleaning up the bird....

We started doing this because the service in restaurants is usually pretty horrible on Valentine’s Day, and there aren’t too many restaurants I can go to and get good duck around here.

Notice there is water in the bottom of the pan.

I remember the first time Michael made us a duck.  I think it took 3 days to get all the smoke out of the house!  If you ever attempt to make a duck make sure you put water into the bottom of the pan.  Duck is a very fatty meat and the grease and fat smoke when it burns in the pan.  The water prevents this.

Flambe the plums!

Through the years Michael has made different sauces for with the duck.  Cherry, plum, blackberry….  He did the plum again because we both really liked it.  The tricky thing is that the plum recipe has him flambe the plums!  All I can picture is that Fresh Prince of Bel Air episode where Will says “I can flambe” and he sets the kitchen on fire!  (You can see it HERE)  Don’t worry, we have a fire extinguisher handy in our kitchen just-in-case….  Luckily we’ve never needed it.

The duck is out of the oven ~ Is that like the cat's out of the bag?

The duckling came out so so yummy!  The thing that’s the worst about a duck dinner is that you smell it cooking for a few hours, and it’s over so quickly.  Kind of like Thanksgiving dinner….

The end result

We didn’t care about making things fancy, the duck was getting cold and we just wanted to dig in!!!!

Bella had her own special dinner too!

Even Bella had a bowl with duck and mashed potatoes.  Potatoes stuck to the roof of a doggies mouth is right up there with peanut butter!!  She loved it!

This is what I thought of dinner

All in all it was a very very yummy dinner.
A big thank you to my Michael for taking the time to make me my favorite dinner of all time!!

Bella & I before we started cleaning up....

Do you have any special traditions with your other half?
Please comment and subscribe.

Read Full Post »