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Job Search and Happiness

Many of we “single women over forty” have had to get back into the workforce at a time when millions of people are looking for a job.  But we cannot get discouraged – in fact, we need to do just the opposite!    We have a right to get the job we want and to be happy doing it!  A recent Gallup poll found that the “happiness” factor of Americans could be linked to two important criteria: living in medium-sized cities, and working in the industries that are “alive and well.”

It may take a little “out of the box” thinking, but many opportunities are created by this method. This may be the first step toward  (re)creating  yourself , and remember, you are not alone!  

Di Chapman, founder of Words to Your Advantage Speaking and Writing Service, has written an article on this topic for   With a focus on success strategies, she posts, specializing in career management and workplace issues.  Please click on the link below for more info.  

Career Need a Boost?

I would like to take this opportunity to share a great article with you.

Brandy A. Lee, Human Resources and Operations Leader at Kieckhafer, Schiffer & Company, LLP, has written; “Nowhere to Go: Advancing Your Career at a Small Company” which is featured on
Writing from personal experience, Brandy discusses issues on career advancement which are relevant in today’s workplace. With many of us concerned about the future of our present jobs and furthering our careers, Brandy’s advice will not only help us survive the current job market, but plan for future advancement as well. Take a moment to click on the link below and benefit from the knowledge of a fellow “survivor”

Happy Valentine's Day!

At the risk of “cheating”, I’m going to re-post my Valentine’s Day blog from last year – as it is still relevant and expresses my sentiments this year as well. Have a wonderful Valentine's Day!
“I hope everyone has a lovely Valentine’s Day. Unfortunately, I know many people say “It’s too commercial;” “I don’t want to be told when to buy flowers;” “Valentine’s Day Sucks!” (A recent quote from a dear friend in Iowa), or, “It’s too much pressure to be romantic on demand!” Blah, blah, blah. Well, come on now – if you don’t want to participate in the spirit of Love, which includes giving, receiving, being a part of . . . . on one specific day of the year -  then don’t. But please, don’t ruin it for the rest of us.  Thank you.
Now we all know there are many kinds of “love” and one of the nicest, with the potential to last a lifetime, is the love between good friends. I had the privilege of hosting a party Sunday for several good S.S.O.F.F* friends!  It was our first official get together since the release of my book “How to Survive in the 21 Century as a S.S.O.F.F.*.  And, of course, my friends are the ladies who contributed their personal experiences and observations to the “S.S.O.F.F* Vignettes.” 
It was such fun to see the camaraderie between them, even though many hadn’t seen each other in years! Granted, they all have being “suddenly single and over forty” in common, however, each differs in background, careers, and lifestyles, to create a unique, diverse, fascinating group of friends. I am so grateful and honored to be a part of this circle, and truly hope we all keep the connection “alive and well” for a long time to come.
So. . . .  to the Valentine Scrooges out there: “You need to take a minute to really think about those you love and how often you acknowledge this without the help of a specific day to remind you. And if it’s not often, or maybe never, then for goodness sake, let Valentine’s Day give you the nudge you need to ensure your love lasts a lifetime!”


Weather Much?

Yes folks, Southern California does have “weather”! (Did anyone notice the hail and thunderstorm last Saturday morning?) Yes it does have rain, lightening, thunder and a tornado or two, and perhaps to tourists and transplants from the mid-west and east coast – that’s barely a “blip” on the weather radar!  But to a native Californian, it’s real Weather
Okay, compared to states east of the Rockies, it doesn’t last long – but remember, Southern California is not geared for stormy weather!  We don’t have storm cellars or storm windows.  Our freeways are meant to handle nutty drivers and earthquakes – not flood waters that could make Noah proud!  Hail that stays on the ground long enough for kids to make “ice balls” is rare and actually a treat. (My kids are keeping theirs in the freezer)  But it’s good enough for us to call weather!
Now I will admit –a few days, or even a week of unstable weather seems like a long time to Southern Californians.  And many locals really don’t know how to deal with it.  For example. . . . . .
There are those that suffer from the “how do I dress for this?” syndrome.   It seems there are only two choices – the “bundle from nose to toes” style or the “shorts and T-shirt no matter what” style.  I find it hard to believe that the “I live in SoCal and I can wear shorts all the time” types, seem to think an air temperature of 50 degrees or less, plus the wind chill factor, with rain blowing sideways, isn’t cold!
Then there are the “rainy day” drivers who have no clue how to drive in the rain.  I won’t even go into speed and wet roads or the myriad of common sense rules that no one observes, because, as everyone knows “It never rains in Southern California. . .”
Also, I’ve noticed that less than one-third of all local drivers use their headlights when driving on a rainy day. California Vehicle Code 24400, the headlight law, has been in effect since July 1, 2005, so. . . .   “Windshield wipers on. . . .Headlights on” Please!  Okay – off my “soap box” . . . . for now.
So, to those of you who live in places with sleet, snow, and below freezing temperatures, “I salute you!”  At times I even envy you the “holiday card” perfection of marshmallow snowdrifts and icicle trimmed trees.  But, no matter how Southern California’s weather may pale in comparison to other states, I humbly ask you to acknowledge that we do have it! And if you must, stay and enjoy it with us.

It's All Relative!

It’s All Relative!
Did you know that May 18 was National Visit Your Relatives Day?  Honest! Of course, we have all heard the phrase, “You can pick your friends but you can’t pick your relatives!”  As a result, we’re all related at some point to some one we would not choose as a friend - and vice versa.  God does have a sense of humor! 
But what about picking “in-laws?”  Unless you are from a culture where a child’s future spouse is chosen at birth –no one has a say in that, either! And mothers, don’t ever kid yourselves into thinking you can influence your sons’ or daughters’ choices of partners.  No matter how close you are to your children, their choices will often surprise and bewilder you.  And of course – rarely does anyone marry only a spouse – they marry a family! (Kate Middleton, anyone?) Parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, and even pets come into the mix.  And with any luck at all, you may be compatible with a few of these family members.  I personally have had the most luck with pets.
I’m not sure where the dynamic of opposites attracting comes from, but being a romantic at heart, I would like to believe “love conquers all.”  And, it may for some fortunate couples.  However, being “opposites” as in-laws does not attract love or any other favorable emotion.  At best, we can hope for tolerance, and at worst – “Meet the Fockers!” 
And by “opposite” I don’t mean the obvious such as race, religion, politics, etc.  (Although, avoiding discussions about religion and politics is always a good call.)  I’m referring to the basic perceptions all families have about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness.  It has been my observation that most of us don’t adapt easily to change in our routines, especially where family gatherings are concerned.  One-on-one we can be amiable, flexible and even enjoy each others company.  But, put us in a group and . . . . not so much!
Having been an in-law several times, whether through my own marriages, my children’s or my sibling’s, I am certain that the one thing we all have in common is the best interests of our loved ones. Unfortunately, that can, and does, get in the way of familial harmony. 
So, back to the beginning, since we have no choice as to whom we become related to by law, since we love our own family (most of the time), and since we want to be involved in our loved ones’ lives (again, most of the time), what choice do we have?  Take the high road!  Do our best to be tolerant and respectful of our differences.  Be a little more flexible with our routines, and we may find some of their customs actually enjoyable.

Remember, we do love the same family member(s) that made us in-laws,  and the best choice we can make is to be a likable in-law.  We may be surprised to find, without picking one, we’ve made a friend.  Happily, I did!  Now, go for a visit!
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