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    Sunday
    Jun092013

    Basic math

    I don’t care if you’re liberal or conservative or a Democrat or Republican – we’ve all been talking about the Sequestration of 2013 and how it affects us.  People are worried.  And they should be.  Spending cuts are here.

    You see, most everyone I know wants the Federal government to cut back on spending and decrease the national debt.  I understand more than most – I work for the agency that borrows the money to operate the federal government and accounts for the debt.

    No matter what happens – this is the truth:  We’ve gotten ourselves in over our heads. You can moan about how we got in this situation, but it doesn’t do any good.  No need to lay the blame at the feet of either political party.  Change doesn’t happen when we’re looking backwards to figure out who’s fault it is.  For years we’ve been spending too much money.  Sequestration cut the budgets of all federal agencies.  It’s basic math - if the amount of money coming in is X, and the amount going out is X + 3, in order to make it even one of two things must happen. 

    1.       More money needs to be raised (increase in taxes), or

    2.       Programs will be underfunded (decrease in services). 

    In either case – you will be affected.  "I want them to stop spending money on the stuff they shouldn’t be spending money on."  And you see, that’s where we will all have a difference of opinion.  People want spending cuts, just not on anything that affects them.  "Surely there are enough of those other things that we shouldn’t be paying for anyway to solve this problem??…"  It’s just that each of us will have a different list of what those things are. We can’t expect the spending cuts to be made only in the things that don’t affect us personally.  Should Public Broadcasting have their funding cut or programs for Veterans?  Should Planned Parenthood be funded or Infrastructure improvements?  What about this one – airport security or counterterrorism?

    So we’ve started seeing cuts in services because of sequestration, and we’ll need to get used to it.  If we are really going to make a drastic change in the deficit there will be more cuts in services.  Waiting to offer your support until you’re sure it will happen the way you want it to?  You’ll be waiting til hell freezes over.  And anyway – when did you get that doctorate in economics?  Sorry, I’m getting snarky.  Know that we won’t always agree with which things get funded and which ones don’t.  But from my perspective – spending cuts are happening, and it’s a good thing.  We live in a country where sacrifices have been made during times of war and hardship to make our country stronger.  I love that about the United States. It was built by people who weren't afraid to get involved and make big changes.

    Want to have a say in what happens? Get involved. In the political process or just in your local community.  Spending cuts to your local schools or clinics? Find out what’s being affected in your area and ask what can be done to help. Speak your mind, and then follow it up with involvement.  Educate yourself about the issues before you speak, and not just by talking to those that agree with you.  And understand that you will be disappointed and things may not go as you want them to – and that it’s important to stay involved anyway.

    Lower the deficit?  There is a price that will be paid by all of us.  It’s time for us to stop talking about how we got here. At this point – who cares? We can’t go back and change any of it. We can only move forward.

    Change never happens when a bunch of people complain about something.   

    Change happens when a bunch of people – or sometimes just one – try to find solutions.

    God Bless America.  I never want to live anywhere else.

     

    Quilt above not made by me - but I love it, and the pattern can be found here.     

    Wednesday
    May012013

    all in your head

    We don’t get to choose what we are intrinsically passionate about.  We don’t get to choose if we are musical people or artistic people or athletic people.  Those kinds of things are in our DNA & our brain chemistry.  I’m a creative person.  I like to make things.  I knit, sew, quilt, draw, and cook.  (Yes – cooking is included in the ‘making things’ category).   It’s why I’m in the design business.  I’m creating something.  Some people - if they are lucky - are more than one of these kinds of categories.  (And obviously there are many more categories than the ones I’ve listed.) I’m mostly passionate about making things, books, & entertaining.  Oh and I love to sit around with interesting people and have deep conversations about anything but politics. What category is that?

    I really like music, but I’m not musical, and I’m not passionate about it.  I never wanted to learn an instrument or sing.  And trust me.  You don’t want me to.

    I really like sports, but I don’t like to play them or work out.  I’m not athletic in any way.  I didn’t get the physically coordinated DNA.  I can’t play sports where they throw anything because if a ball were to come my way I’d close my eyes and duck.  Oh how I wish I was one of those people who loves to go to the gym, but I never will be. 

    When people think it's amazing that I can make beautiful things, I don't think it's a big deal because it's what I was given.  On the other hand, those of you who excel at all those other things I can't do at all? Wow I'm completely in awe of your talent.

    You know that question from “Inside the Actor’s Studio”?  What profession other than yours would you like to attempt? Sheesh.  I love what I do, and I can’t think of something else that I’d like to attempt.  Except to own a bookshop/café/paper & fabric store with workshop space.  Where I could make things, and cook things for people.  I'd be surrounded by books & paper & fabric, and have smart, funny, fascinating people join me.  You're all invited.  And I’d live upstairs so I’d never have to leave.  And then I’d invite the musical people to come and play for us. 

    That sounds perfect for me. 

     

    photo above: the latest thing I've made - the Union Jack quilt that I made for my oldest who will be graduating in June from Goldsmiths College in London. 

    Monday
    Apr222013

    my imagination

    See that card in the photo? It was given to me by a coworker quite a while ago after I received an honor at work.  It was & is true about me, and I was flattered that this particular coworker could see that in me.

    “Imagine yourself doing what you love and loving what you do, Being happy from the inside out, experiencing your dreams wide awake, being creative, being unique, being you – changing things to the way you know they can be – living the life you always imagined. “

    The life you always imagined.  What is it that 10 years from now you would really regret?

    Fill in the blank“I wish I had been brave enough to____________” 

    For me it’s finding a new job and moving somewhere new.

    By my own admission I am very happy and have a wonderful life, amazing family, and a job that I love.  Is it selfish of me to want more than this? 

    But I don’t think it’s enough.  Right now it’s not enough to just be comfortable in the life I have – as wonderful and satisfying as it is.  I am feeling that 10 years from now there will be regret if I don’t at least think about what I want to do differently and take a few chances.  So much of our lives are decided for us, and I’ve been happy with that until now. But since it’s really the first time in almost 30 years that I can do or be something else I really need to figure out what I want.

    And there it is.  The truth that we’re often not ready to say out loud.  If we’re lucky enough to be happy with the life we have – then why would we even contemplate something that might change that happy place? Because we’d regret it if we didn’t.  Am I tempting fate by even thinking about doing something else?  Foolish, selfish woman.  Why do you think you need more than the completely wonderful and satisfying life you have now? Because I think I would regret it if I didn’t try to experience something else.

    And I’m scared.  I’ve written before about finding another job and moving to a different place.  That I graduated from college on Saturday and moved to Marietta for a job 2 days later.  That I’ve lived here every day of my adult life.  It’s scary to think about getting a new job and moving someplace else. Of course some of it’s not within my control.  I have to actually find a new job in order to begin a different life somewhere else.  That small detail withstanding, it will take a lot of courage to get another job and start another life, leaving behind this wonderful place I’m in now. 

    Over the weekend I was with my ex-husband’s family at my nephew’s first communion, and I was talking to my sister-in-law about how it’s scary to think about moving somewhere else.  I said “I will have to be brave, and I’ll have to work to make new friends”  And she mentioned something that her brother told her about me when we first started dating – that he was impressed I had moved to Marietta right out of college without knowing anyone and made a new life for myself. That I was strong and independent and could take care of myself.  I never knew that.  And until she said it I didn’t even consider that I’ve actually done it before - taken a new job, moved somewhere and made a new life for myself.   

    So now it’s time to take some risks.  Change is big and it’s scary and sometimes it’s like jumping off a cliff.  But I think I’m one of those people than can be happy wherever and however I am.  And if I’m not – then maybe I will just choose to be. 

     

    in case you're wondering - I've made it no secret that I'm contemplating moving & changing jobs.  I have the complete support of my boss & coworkers.... 

    And...  as I've mentioned before, most times this journal is more of an exercise for me to work through what I'm thinking than it is a place for me to share.  This post is one of those times that it was all about me figuring something out.  And consequently - I've disabled the comment feature, as this feels too private to solicit comments.

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