Hello! I know I’ve been away for awhile. What can I say, the first half of the year just seems so hectic that blogging takes a step to the side. I recently logged into WP and saw that my blog still shows signs of life, so I thought I should take a few minutes to post something and get up to date with my fellow bloggers.
Below are some of the items that have occupied my attention and I’d like to share with all of you.
1. 2014 Birding
As you may know, I recently became a birdwatcher and my last update had to do with the Great Backyard Birdcount. It was definitely a fun event to partake, and I counted 22 different bird species living in my backyard. After the bird count, I started hanging up socks full of thistle seed for the house finches, and within a few weeks I discovered that there are lesser goldfinches in my area. About mid-April, while running late for work one day, I also discovered that my pool sometimes doubles as a duck pond.
The Mallard and Cinnamon Teal shown above flew into my pool for a few minutes, then jumped out, dried off their feathers and flew away. After I took the photos, I noticed a blue and white tag on both ducks, so these two are being tracked.
2. Continuing Education
About this time last year, I discovered my local county library system offers FREE online self-interest courses delivered by a nationwide provider (currently Gale Education). For the past year, I’ve been taking various classes through this system. I started with guitar and music classes. In January, I decided to update my technical skills and took an intro SQL class as well as intro HTML. I then moved on to an advanced HTML class. It’s been fun learning how to design websites. At some point, I should use my new found skills to give this blog a small makeover. I’m kicking around an idea for a website, but am not sure if I want to commit to launching a website yet. Stay tuned.
3. Job Stuff
I’m a senior level business/financial analyst during the day. My job is comfortable, but this month will mark 6 years at my current organization. It’s made me really sit and examine where I want my career to go because I don’t see growth opportunities for my role at my current company. On the other hand, the location, perks and salary are satisfactory. I’m in no hurry, but it never hurts to keep an eye out for other opportunities. In the meantime, I’ve been taking time to do some career planning and set a few goals.
Over the past 3 months, I’ve made myself commit to a normal writing routine to get some of my half-finished stories and poems finished. I had a list of 10 pieces that needed work. So far, I’ve finished 3… 2 poems and 1 personal essay. I submitted the 2 poems for publication and they were recently accepted into a magazine published by the AZ Consortium for the Arts. I’ll post a link to the issue when it launches. I now need to submit the personal essay… then get back to the remaining 7 items.
I’ve also used the first six months to do some home improvements, go on vacation, continue with my guitar playing, spend more time catching up with friends, etc…
There is just never enough time for everything, is there?
Well, that is what I’ve been up to. How about you? Feel free to leave me a message below to let me know how you’ve been. I’ll slowly but surely make it over to everyone else’s blog, but feel leave to leave me the highlights of your 2014 so far in the comments below.