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Just now using LJ's new posting interface whatchamawhoosit. Looks less blocky, I guess. 

So! I hope everyone's been well since Thanksgiving. I've been okay, in a sense. Both MicroMascots and Jackalope Hollow's sales are slowly overcoming the inertia I mistakingly set them in, but I'm fixing that and becoming consistent in my pursuits. I'm also becoming less scatterbrained and more schedule-oriented and self-driven. These things are important for success (in my own mind anyway).

The real problem I'm facing right now is burnout. I work at my day job and work on my own creative job and am happy with the results I'm producing! But I often forget to take actual days off from both and I'm afraid it's wearing me down fast. I know I have the capability to finish everything I set out to do, but I still manage to get stressed and freak myself out. This isn't healthy in the least.

In the near future I plan on accquiring one of those whiteboard calendars to hang above my desk, and will clearly mark which days are designated as "off" on them. My creative work is the love of my life, but I really do need to take a clear break at least once a week. I think I'll be doing a lot better after that. My planned vacation-from-everything in a few weeks should do me some good as well.

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Thanksgiving 2012

I told myself I'd document the things I'm thankful for this year and here I am doing it. This year I'm thankful for:

My Family: as always. My whole family came over to our apartment for dinner, which we cleaned up and decorated real nice. It was the first time my dad has seen the place since Sam and I moved here, and he told us it was nice. Too bad he forgot his inhaler and was getting itchy from the bunny. D= I'm also thankful for:

Sam: He's a really sweet guy and I love him to pieces. I'm so happy to have him in my life! He keeps me up when I'm feeling down, he appreciates everything I do for him, and without him I wouldn't have this opportunity to live on my own. I'm very thankful to have such a good friend and lover, and I hope we stay together for a long time.

The Book: Y'know, the children's book I just finished? It wasn't a super-high paying gig, but the income from it is allowing me to venture into new business projects and purchase a more fuel-efficient vehicle. As an added bonus I can now say I'm a published illustrator, which will help lead to even more gigs! I'm very thankful to have had this opportunity, it's been a great experience in hard work and perseverance. And Photoshop.

A Job that isn't Terrible: My new job at Domino's is pretty boss. I get just enough hours without it being too many, my co-workers are nice, my managers aren't dicks and the work is super easy. I'm planning on staying here until I either move or make enough from self-employment to not need the job anymore.

General Well-Being: Some days I feel a bit down, and that's okay. But then I stop and think about all the good things about my life. I have a supportive family, a loving boyfriend, a roof over our heads that we support, a job, a business that's gradually expanding, and a good head on my shoulders. I'm in good health, and have health insurance for when I'm not. I'm not exactly where I want to be in life, but I'm moving in the right direction and know I'll be there soon.

I hope all of you had a happy Thanksgiving. Or Thursday if you're outside of the US. Be well.

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Storm Journal

Well, Hurricane (excuse me post-tropical storm) Sandy is over, and I'm happy to say that Sam and I and my family back at their home are very much safe. We never lost power (save for a few flickers) or experienced any dangerously high winds. There were some gusts here and there but nothing too serious. I really feel for those in NYC and along the NJ coast. Ocean City, MD and the Delaware beaches as well. Seeing photos of places underwater is terrifying, especially when they're places I've been before. I hope anyone stuck there stays safe.

Now that the storm scare is over it's back to life as usual for me. For those still feeling the effects, be well.

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I'm a freelance illustrator. I'm a small business owner that's looking to expand quickly. I'm responsible for paying all my own bills now. And I'm starting to understand what real stress is.

It's new territory, but I'm learning to manage it. Like anything else I just practice different techniques and try new things to find out what works for me. Sometimes it's scary, but most of the time it's not. Fear makes the wolf bigger than it actually is, so it's best to not let yourself get scared. I won't let anything stand between myself and greatness. There are too many people who need me.

With that being said, I have a children's book to finish illustrating. Very much looking forward to holding my printed copies very soon.

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On the up and up

So a lot of things have gone well lately!

rapidtrabbit, Sam, my brother Brent and my friend non timbo mala and I successfully completed a short entertainment gig at the NKF Wilmington Kidney walk last Sunday. Here's a photo! It was a lot of fun, and I look forward to doing more events like this very soon! Business is fun <3

I'm very much enjoying my new job at Domino's. I'm not there very often (which is the way I want it), the job is easy, my coworkers are great and my manager works just as hard as everyone else does. And that's the way it should be! I get less hours than I did at BJ's but I'm okay with that. More time to get my ass in gear business-wise. The Etsy holiday season is almost upon us and Sam and I are looking forward to it!

Speaking of new jobs and Sam, Sam just got a new job! He accepted the offer letter today for a warehousing position at Harbor Freight Tools (the one we live right behind). I'm so happy for him <3 This month the VA has been giving him problems in getting his usual housing payment, but luckily his bank was able to work with him so he could pay his bills. The new job will provide him with even more financial security. We're going to Denny's to celebrate soon!

I'll be finished with the book next week, so looking forward to having that done. I'll be able to be swamped by something else instead! Hahaha. Very happy with where my life is right now. =]

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Bullet Blog #6: Summing it UP

  • I started my new job at Domino's last Wednesday
  • I'm catching on fast and the girls there are nice
  • My last day at BJ's was Saturday because they cut me short one week
  • (not that I wanted to go back that week anyway)
  • They can all suck it
  • I feel like things are calming down now
  • My sister Jenna turned 18 on Saturday
  • My dad's kind of a dick
  • Going grocery shopping today
  • Looking forward to the holiday selling season on Etsy
  • It's all coming together

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Further Life Documentation

Last night I went to a Domino's Pizza for a job interview and they liked me and hired me right there without a drug test or anything for some reason (not that I would've failed it). So yeah. New job. Which means I can quit my old one. Put in my two-week's notice today.

I could go into detail about why I've grown to despise this job, but instead of wasting a bunch of time doing that I'll leave you with one example:

There's this guy in our department who was transferred from the deli because management was too cheap to hire a new person. He doesn't want to be in bakery so that was a dick move on management's part, but he's there. This guy sort of half-asses a lot of work, and he's talks to much and doesn't get stuff done as quickly as he should. And he has shown up to work anywhere from 1/2 hour to 2 hours late on at least eight separate occassions. And He's no-call-no-showed twice.

And he still has a job.

Even though according to the company handbook he should have been fired weeks ago, he's still there because management likes him. I know there are greasy managers out there, but if I don't have to work for them I won't. That's why I got a new job.

More documentation later. One day, when I have time, I'm going to peruse through this journal to reflect or whatever.

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Gold and Splints

Yesterday my grandparents (on my mom's side) celebrated their golden 50th wedding anniversary. We surprised them with lovely decorations, a nice dinner and a photo slideshow that my uncle put together for them. It was wonderful. Not many people stay married even half that long these days, it seems! I'm glad they're still together and in good health. Everyone took turns thanking them for all they've done for us. My dad's mother doesn't recognize our existence as grandkids, and his dad died ten yeras ago (he did do some stuff for us, but he was 9hrs away, so...). My grandparents are the best grandparents.


In alternate news, my job is giving me health problems. I've been the only one decorating a boatload of cakes on Saturdays for the past three weeks. The continual squeezing of icing piping bags has been causing me pain that shoots from my wrist to my forearm and back. I called in sick and went to a doctor today and they gave me a wrist splint, prescription for a painkiller, and a light duty note instrucing my employer to lighten my workload for a week. I need to give it directly to my manager tomorrow because I feel like they'll be assholes and "magically" lose it if I leave it in the manager mailbox. Hopefully they regard it. I can't have carpal tunnel. I need to be able to draw.

Still looking for a new job. No luck yet, but I'm trying.

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Nose, I am dissapoint

Yesterday I went to my ENT doctor for the final follow-up of the septoplasty I had done in May. Since then, my septum has shifted back to where it was, restricting my comfortable breathing again. When I told the doc she took a look and did confirm this. While it is possible for her to go back in and remove more cartilage, this could run the rist of weakening the cartilage too much. If that were to happen, my nose could pull a MJ and collapse in on itself under the weight of my skin. So we agreed that I'll just try my best to deal with it as is.

Oh well. I tried. =/

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(insert relevant journal title here)

To begin, I have an interview for a new job on Thursday, which I'm extremely happy about! Now, I know what you're thinking. "Jessss, didn't you just start a new job at BJ's a few months ago?" Well, now I know why my brother ditched that place so fast. The management is absolutely awful. If you want me to elaborate I can, but it'd be a novel for me to type it right now. So... not gonna bother.

I'm doing a decent job of getting my schedule under control. I go to my mom's three days a week to work on costume stuff, and work on illustrating at home. When I finish illustrating the book I'm working on (three weeks from now) I'll probably put an extra day in the shop. Sam and a friend have both been helping me manage both MicroMascots and Jackalope Hollow items, which does me an insane amount of good. Delagation of tasks is really the only way to get a lot done in the business world, and I need to step up my game.

In general I feel things are working out for me. I share an apartment with the guy I love. I have enough money to pay the bills and still occasionaly go out to do things. Business prospects look good. I'm wrapping up my first professional illustrating gig. Stress and anxiety levels are kept to a minimum. I'm healthy. I'm happy!

I'll be even happier if I get to leave BJ's in two weeks, though. Jesus Christ.

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