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Charlie's Strange and Happy World
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Really Crazy HARD Day at the Festival Office 
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I'm NOT the only person that found today ridiculously HARD and totally crazy. I think pretty much the entire Staff would agree with that, actually...

And along with that assessment, it was BITTERLY COLD -- plus if you had to be out, it was pouring down rain latter in the day, as well. If it must rain, could it PLEASE be warmer??? I thought poor Marilyn was going to die on the way home from work.

But I'm getting away from myself here!

The day was slated to start with coffee at Starbucks -- which is our tradition for all new staff. I gave Jeff something of a hard time that he had already taken Sheila there before I could do that (as everybody knows the routine). But when he finally finished with her, she was quite willing to go to Starbucks again. She'd had tea with Jeff, but then had hot chocolate with us. (smile)

Marilyn, Rich, Steven, Sheila and I proceeded to go to Starbucks, chatting all the way there and back. I was supposed to get her after that until time for staff meeting, but that's not how it worked out. That was okay, as I had lots of OTHER work to do! She met with Kathy (our former president who is a financial consultant -- along the lines of Donn). And I had Donn there, so I talked to him.

I had received 'permission' for Donn to attend the beginning of staff meeting from Jeff, so he could be there when my birthday was celebrated (and because I wanted to call him out in front of everyone for his excellent work in 2015).

Oh!!! Before I forget, Marissa had the most wonderful new hair cut -- plus she'd changed the color, too! She looked wonderful! I couldn't stop praising the change. It really suits her!

First Jeff had each of us discuss our jobs with Sheila, going around the table. Considering most of us have multiple roles on our small staff, that takes some time! Then Sheila told us about herself (very impressive, by the way!). And our tradition -- should there be a birthday -- is that the new person has to sing 'Happy Birthday' at that point! She got us started and everyone chimed in to sing to me. Very nice! Christine had arranged for a treat that everybody shared. (I'd sent Donn on his way early on, not wanting to upset Jeff.)

Then we discussed current special events (there were lots because of the holiday weekend -- and heightened tensions around the world due to Paris) and moved on to our usual updates. I, again, mentioned that we'd be doing one-on-one training during December and January -- something I've been trying to do for years, by the way. The regular staff never gets 're-trained' -- but they need it. After all, as I pointed out, I'm NOT the one who trained many of them in the first place!

Marilyn promised this training would take an hour (!!!). I said that wasn't possible. We'll see how it all goes. I have a two and a half page 'check list' that needs to be reviewed -- and frankly I don't think it can be covered properly in an hour. From experience, it's the person being trained who has questions about the material that need answers. But we shall see!

After that I had Sheila briefly -- then Kathy took her, because she was slated to only be there for a certain part of the day (and I would be there the entire day). I moved over to the large list of work that was NOT IT-related that I need to work on.

I got my #TuesdayGiving News item up -- asking the public to donate to our foundation. We're a 501(c)3 non-profit -- a charity -- but most people don't realize that. Hopefully we ended up with some donations. I think I did a pretty good job writing up the News item, anyway. Marissa worked the topic for social media today, as well.

I actually read my 'article' out loud to Donn, who offered suggestions. Then Carol, Marissa and Christine all vetted it.

I did take time to phone and speak to my friend June. She'd sent me an email, but I hadn't seen it until late last night! That's the thing with vacation: I often don't even read my emails. We had a nice chat. She's been sick -- and was going to the doctor today. I need to check in with her tomorrow and find out what happened at that appointment...

June also told me about current weather concerns. Marilyn and Rich had a meeting in Troutdale, so I was concerned about them driving out in light of reports about the weather.

Jeff had told me in the morning that he and Marilyn were taking Sheila to lunch, so that happened around this time.

At one point during the day Christine and I chatted about the bid for the website changes. I think the cost is way too high! We're both thinking we should try some work-arounds, rather than pay for everything. We brought Carol into the discussion, and I said I wanted Fish to break things down for me. And then we'd buy it piecemeal. So we'll see what happens... (sigh)

Oh! And Carol recently got a new car that I finally saw today! Very nice.

In between everything going on, Donn and I were dealing with Tanya's computer issues (she was NOT in today). And Donn was there to work on WiFi (yes, again).

I eventually walked out (!!!) to get something to eat for lunch. I went to the Turkey Place. Donn sent me a text about getting him something to eat, which I did. (He doesn't eat meat, so that's harder than it sounds.)

I sat in Marilyn's office long enough to eat half my sandwich. It was warm in there, and I was pretty chilled after my walk outside! At that point it was VERY BLUSTERY and VERY COLD. I was glad I'd worn a long-sleeve top, my leather jacket AND my heavy coat with hood.

Then I went directly back to work at my space upstairs, where it was COLD.

Eventually Sheila was available to meet with me -- so the changes I wanted to make to the News item had to wait. (They never DID get done! I just didn't have TIME.)

I was training Sheila using Shelley's login, as I'd never had the chance to create a Profile for her on the Server. In between all of this, there were numerous issues with Quickbooks, so Donn was in the mix quite a bit, trying to get her up and running with the software we use for finance. At times it was pretty crowded in our small finance office, with Sheila, Kathy, Donn, Jeff and me (not all of us at once -- there wouldn't be ROOM for that -- but you can probably follow what a mess that was!

I finally stopped and went up to my desk to log in to the Server and create a Username for her. Plus I got her set up on her phone (doing all the back end work necessary). Then we logged Sheila in as Sheila and continued her training from there. She was only in for today -- and won't be back to actually start until next Tuesday. So I was supposed to really be doing her step-by-step training today (thankfully!!!). But we did cover quite a bit.

Normally NO ONE is supposed to TOUCH a computer until I've trained them. The goal would be to make certain they know our rules and restrictions prior to using a computer. And we got part way through the most essential stuff -- but it wasn't easy with all the tons of interruptions.

To tell you the truth, I never get through training (AGAIN, NEVER) without loads of interruptions. Part of that is simply that the second I set foot in the office there are IT demands that I need to meet. Plus in this case there was a lot of website stuff, as well!

Which reminds me of all the work I need to tackle from here at my home office tomorrow. (sigh)

I did also get Sheila set up on her iPhone, which as always was a tad tricky. During that time everybody else went upstairs for Creative Team meeting -- which I very much wanted to attend! I eventually joined them, missing the first topic we covered. But it was a lively meeting (I always enjoy the brain storming we do) when I finally got there!

Then Donn had to pull me out again in the middle to deal with another issue. I finally got back to that meeting before it finished up (but missed a major topic I'd been looking forward to). There's a lot going on right now, as difficult as that is for people outside to understand. But we don't put the festival together without a lot of advanced planning! Plus our Toy Drive event is next Wednesday (December 9).

Also, we're going to Pittock Mansion (the entire staff) next Tuesday. I'd asked Donn to come along and he'd asked if Denise could go. So I finally got to ask Marilyn about it at Creative Team. I was pleased when I was told she could attend. Denise has never been there, period, much less during the holidays when they're decorated. And I've never been there during the holidays! So we're looking forward to this trip -- it replaces staff meeting for next week.

Again, Tuesday will also officially be my day to train Sheila. That should be interesting, in light of our staff field trip! (No, my life is never easy -- that's for sure!)

I have to mention that Donn and I really get our exercise in on the days were at the office! We do so much of our work upstairs, but then also need to be downstairs. So it's up and down and up and down.

At one point Donn had the WiFi working -- then suddenly it wasn't! There are some serious issues with getting it to work in our building! And he'd had it plugged in using the cable for Marilyn's phone. So after I've let him go for the day, Marilyn discovers that her phone isn't working!!!

I had to contact Donn to come in tomorrow -- even though I won't be working inside the office on Wednesday. Poor guy! I was in pretty ill humor by that point. Marilyn wanted to LEAVE (she'd had a killer day), and there I was in my good pants crawling on the floor (as usual).

You know, I really can't wear nice pants to the office. I almost always end up crawling under desks on my hands and knees! And yes, it's dirty under the desks...

We finally did leave for the day. Marilyn and I were both heavily complaining about the nasty, rainy, COLD weather as we headed home! We didn't go the normal way because of a Blazer game that had traffic really backed up. We'd already hit terrible traffic on our way to work this morning. Traffic in Portland is now ridiculous all the time.

So we went the long way around, stopping briefly at Safeway on the way home. I'd seen Christine eating a chicken pot pie for lunch and mentioned it: So Marilyn and I got those and had them for dinner! It's been ages since we had them -- and this was a perfect day for that.

The change in the weather is just hard on both of us, for whatever reason. It was cold during vacation, but totally DRY. And we weren't dealing with these winds, either! The rain makes it much worse when the temperature is hovering around 30'...

We were watching TV during and after dinner. We had on "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (the 1964 show) and were watching that -- and we BOTH fell asleep before the end! That's how tired we were.

In fact, it's now well past midnight (yes, again!), as I type this.

I need to go take my meds. At least I got up and turned down the heat (we both hate sleeping with the furnace running) and peeled my contacts off my eyes. (sigh)

So there's a TON for me to tackle tomorrow! I'd wanted to try and get all of Thanksgiving put away -- and to start putting up Christmas. But I have a feeling I won't get to that in light of everything else I need to do.

Marilyn and I discussed something I needed to work on. Honestly, at this moment I can't remember what the hell it was!

Anyway, those were the highlights of my crazy day (I'm sure I'm skipping tons of it!). I'm exhausted right now, so I guess I'll head back to bed...

I hope it doesn't FREEZE on the roads overnight!!!!!!!!

I wonder if I'll get to see sister Sue tomorrow??? I hope so!
Comments 
December 3, 2015 (Thursday) 04:56 pm (UTC)
Boy what a day you had at work. I hope you do not need to work Friday so maybe we could go to lunch for your birthday and maybe Marilyn could join us. I know you are both so busy. Glad Marilyn has that time off in December and that you plan to go to the beach. Maybe I could get down for a night.
December 6, 2015 (Sunday) 09:39 pm (UTC)
Sorry for the tough day, and the cold!