It’s all about the look.

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Sometimes I have to be in front of the camera. A flannel, t-shirt, jeans and work boots keep this girl happy and grounded. They also remind me how important hard work is.

What a month! After too many sleepless nights of doubting the pull that brought me home, finally some success. I have ran from Carmi for 20+ years, but now I’m glad to be back. I have made some great new friends, reconnected with old ones and have just been having a great time professionally and personally the past few weeks.

Thanks to some great new clients, I have been reintroduced to my old hometown. I have always had a lot of hometown pride, but it seems to be overflowing lately. I am an official, card-carrying member of the Carmi Chamber of Commerce. This might not sounds like much to you, but to me it is electric.

SeitzLife has been a dream for many years. Sure, I have been a semi-successful freelancer for years, but I  never had the guts to turn my back completely on a 9 to 5 job until recently. I feel liberated, ultra creative, and for the first time in a long time, I feel grounded.

I have started successfully marketing myself, instead of just my clients. Getting in front of the camera instead of behind it was terrifying, but worth it. My friend Jan took great pics of me and some of my employees. My media kit is fantabulous and prospective new clients have been eating them up.

I’m still looking for a permanent place to live, but when the time and place is right, one will be presented to me. I still stand by my old mantra that nothing can be forced, either professionally or personally. And I couldn’t agree more, now more than ever.

I still fight paralyzing self-doubt at times, but then I take a look at my resume, my accomplishments, my granddaughter and my great sons and realize I have nothing to worry about…EVER. Let all the worry go and just keep working toward success.
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Amazing.

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Me and my high school mascot, Corn Day 2015.

I have been saying, “always believe something amazing is about to happen,” for quite some time now. The last few weeks have proven the truth of these words. I am working on an AMAZING website for some great clients. I had an AMAZING time at Corn Day 2015 in my hometown of Carmi, Illinois this past weekend. I think I have found an AMAZING place to live. And SeitzLife Art & Design has hired it’s first AMAZING employee since I have moved home.

To say I am feeling blessed is an understatement. In the thick of all this professional excitement, I also become Lizzy’s YaYa (that’s Greek for grandma) on August 21, 2015. She is absolutely beautiful and perfect in every way.

2015 has been a hard year, both professionally and personally. I have had to learn some hard lessons. I have had to let go of some anger and distrust I have been carrying around. It was hard to let some of them go. I have stepped back and looked at the big picture and realized what was/is important and let the rest go. I still consider myself a work in progress, but I am progressing quite well right now.

I have always been awesome at my job. When I decided to quit worrying about the personal stuff and concentrate on building my business, I found a calm and happiness that had been missing as of late. I also remembered not to take the happiness I do have for granted. Everything can change in the blink of an eye, and I never want to leave loose ends again. I still have a few I am trying to tie up.

Always believe something amazing is about to happen, because it is.
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Freebie Jeebie #009

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Recently I have gone crazy over chevron and monograms. I may be a little late to the game, but I’m here. I had trouble finding just the right background for my iPhone, so I decided to just make my own. Then I decided to give them to you.

These are all fully customizable it you know how to use Photoshop. The files in the downloads are .psd files with the ability to change the letters of the monogram (or anything else, if you choose). There are no fonts, everything is rasterized. I just gave you all the letters and then rasterized them. All you have to do is turn on the layers you need and possibly reposition here and there. Enjoy!








Today.

So today I am watching reruns of No Reservations, trying to figure out how to get Anthony Bourdain to share a meal with me, eating pistachios, nosing around on Facebook and Twitter, when I see what The Bloggess has tweeted. Go read and watch this right now. [Click here.]

Jenny never fails to make me laugh almost daily with her clever humor and banter on Twitter. And then I see these lovely people helping her promote her new book and I sob. They are all so beautiful, so brave and so unafraid of their own truth.

Say what you will about progress, but mental illness is still a taboo subject no one in my world wants to talk about. Sometimes I am paralyzed with self-doubt and depression, other days I am on top of the world. Depression is a dirty bitch that rears her ugly head way too often. Sometimes I can slap her down and sometimes she wins.

I have wrote a lot about not being unhappy, and it’s true. I think numb describes me more often than not. But even though I sobbed today, I was happy. And anytime there is even a little bit of happy, it’s a good day. Thanks Jenny!
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Locked up tight.

LockedHeartI’m single. Yep, I’m a 44-year-old single woman. I have been single for a long, long time. And I probably will be for a long, long time to come. I didn’t consciously make the decision to be single, it’s more like I have just became accustomed to it.

I will be the first to admit I am hard to love. I am too much for most men to handle. I am fiercely independent, but want a boy to hold my hand. I have plenty of my own money, but my heart will melt when presented with a heartfelt gift—no matter what the cost. Sometimes I get wrapped up in a project and will forget about everything and everybody. I forget my cell phone, but go into a panic if I can’t get the boy on the phone. I am over confident, but sometimes I am paralyzed by self-doubt. I’m cool with a bologna sandwich, sweatpants and no shoes, but other times I want black tie and linen napkins. I am a barrel of contradictions.

I have recently spent a lot of time getting to know myself again. I had forgotten who I was. I have been spending time trying to figure out the balance of fun and work. I have been cooking more, spending time not being a hermit and trying not to do anything stupid. I have sat on my hands to keep myself in check.

But even tho I am strong—really strong, I still get lonely. It’s the little things I miss. I miss having someone to eat supper with. I miss simple conversation. I miss his melodies to my harmonies. I miss hearing the alarm, waking up and realizing I am not alone in a big bed. It’s been a long time since I shared a bed, or anything else with a boy, but now I might be ready to try again.

I guess I have had my heart locked up for too long and now it wants out. No one is more surprised than me. I have kept it too guarded and never revealed all of myself to anyone. Maybe that’s my major life mistake. I have never trusted enough to show myself entirely to someone. Maybe I never will. But at least now I’m ready to try.
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Open for business.

In my quest to move home, I am taking new clients. Need a website? Someone to manage your Social Media Accounts (all of them)? Custom graphics or a logo? Marketing? PR? I’m your girl. Below are a few documents explaining just some of the services SeitzLife Art & Design has to offer.



We will work hard for you! My company has more than 20 years experience and great people to build a custom package to fit you or your business needs and to stay on budget! [CLICK HERE] to contact us today.
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Buck up.

I have been whiney, unmotivated, making excuses and generally just feeling sorry for my damn self. I recently told a good friend that sometimes self-doubt paralyzes me, and right now that couldn’t be more true. I am questioning everything about me. I can’t even remember who I am. I can’t remember how I like my eggs. I can’t remember what “normal” is.

Too many different assignments have left me questioning everything good in the world right now. And to top it off, I evidently have started caring what people think about me. What? I know, right.

I have trusted people who didn’t deserve my trust. And people have judged me too harshly for things I had no control over. I have distanced myself from almost everyone. I have taken back my solitude. But this time I don’t like it.

I feel like I am not being heard. Wait, I don’t feel like people aren’t hearing me, I just don’t think they are listening. It’s not that I have a lot to say, but what I do have to say is important.

I have been listening to too much h 90’s County music and that is affecting my mood too. As much I couldn’t live well without music, this stuff is messing with my mojo. And I want to smoke. I want to smoke 458 cigarettes. But, I won’t.

I’m dwelling on the past too much and failing to look to the future. I can’t find a job in Southern Illinois. Since I spent 16 months in St Louis at a 9 to 5 job, I let a lot of my freelance clients move on to other design houses. I have quite a bit in the bank, but I haven’t added to it in a few months and that is making me very nervous and unsettled. I have said “it’s only money, I’ll make more,” a lot to my friends in the past few years, but now I need to make more for my own peace of mind.

I’m stressed and I don’t like it. Who wants to go on vacation?
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Hire me.

Yep. I need a J-O-B. I quit my dream job in the big city and went home to Southern Illinois. My heart told me to go home and now my bank account is telling me to find a job. I haven’t lived here in a LONG time, but Carmi called, and I answered. If you need a graphic artist slash web designer slash creative director, then I’m your girl.

Tomorrow.

Tomorrow is just another day.
What does it mean any way?
Tomorrow, it will be today.
Tomorrow, today will be yesterday.
What to prove, what is my point you say?
Tomorrow is a thought that will not go away.
We yearn for it on a shitty day,
When we get there, nothing is different any way.
The sun is up, soak in its rays,
But yet, those were there yesterday.
So see, tomorrow is always a day away.
You will never get there, yet you try any way.
So if you are looking for wisdom, today is a prison.
The sentence is life, so broaden your vision.
You sell the idea like you are getting commission.
You have nothing to profit, so why don’t you drop it.
Though I know you won’t listen and it’s rough around the edges,
So take life and crop it.
No reason to keep the blurred pieces there.
I don’t mean to upset you, I just want you to be aware.
BrandonSIG

 

 


Brandon-Brandon Fromm is my eldest son. He is a talented wordsmith, lyricist and story teller. After years of begging him to write something for me, he finally relented. He hosts the Facebook group “Pencil to Paper” where he and his like-minded friends share some of their writing. Brandon and I disagree daily, but we both respect each others’ intelligence and we have our best conversations after 2 a.m. 

Childhood and cookie jars.

CookieJarOver the course of the past 24 plus years I have learned thru experience that parenting is a daily struggle. It’s a welcome struggle, not a burden. Because we all chose to bring our children into this world, we can’t say they are a burden. Well, most of us can’t.

We all have our own stories, as both parents and children. I’m positive there are no perfect parents and I’m also sure no one has ever had the perfect childhood. Physical abuse, mental abuse, divorce, abandonment, deadbeat parents, and endless other situations can both define our roles as children and parents.

As a child I know I definitely didn’t have the best of times. My childhood was defined by one sound I will never forget—one big crash. The sound of a plaster-casted cookie jar hitting the wall at a very high rate of speed is one I will never forget. I can even remember what it looked like. It was a woven basket, the lid had two acorns on top for a handle. It didn’t fare too well against the wall, nor did the rest of my childhood.

My parent’s divorced in the 80’s before divorce became “fashionable.” Divorce was the exception, not the norm. I was only 7-years-old, my sister 10. My 7-year-old mind never quite understood why my parents split. As a child, it was way above my head.

As an adult, I have had many conversations with my mother. Looking back over the years I spent with my father, I’ve realized the rhymes and reasons for the dissolution of my “happy” family. Yes, I said, “years I spent with my father.” Back then (and now) it was unusual for fathers to gain custody of their kids. With that said, my mother was the best mother I could have ever asked for. She was loving, caring, tender and attentive—everything a good mother is supposed to be.

My father, however, was so much more than I ever thought he was, and not in a good way. When I was a young boy he was my world. He would do all the right things a good father should do. I know he loved my sister and me, but because he used us as pawns in a divorce, he was a horrible father. He took advantage of two very naïve and scared little kids. He used a pack of lies and half-truths to fight and take us away from our mother.

He emptied the bank accounts and left my mother with nothing. Without money she couldn’t fight him. We knew only what our father told us.

He scared the devil out of us when the judge took my sister and I into his chambers. We both told the judge we wanted to live with our father. It is a choice no child should ever have to make—ever. I have regretted this for many years.

After our father was awarded custody of us, we packed up and moved to Carmi, Illinois. We left our school, our home and most of all, our mother. I adapted rather quickly to the routine of my new life, but never really settled in. My sister, however, did not. By the time she was 12 or 13 she had moved back to be our mother. I honestly believe my father thought that if he took us away from our mother she would see things his way and come back. Of course she didn’t. And I am so glad.

My father is selfish and self-centered—a classic narcissist. It took me longer than I wish it had to figure out my father never did anything that didn’t benefit him in some way. My father used my sister and I as bait. When the bait didn’t produce any bites for him, he had no use for me. It’s too obvious to me now, and the pain still surfaces quite often.

The pain shows in the way our relationship has gone over the last 30+ years—the relationship he doesn’t have with me, my children, or even my grand children. It is astounding how unconnected he can be. We sometimes go months without communicating and when we do it is short and impersonal. It’s like I’m just another generic member of a group text.

The upside is that my mother and I are closer than we have ever been. She is my rock and my world, and her husband, my stepfather, has been more of a father than my biological one ever though of being.

I wish I could turn back time and tell the judge I wanted to live with my mother. But, I can’t. The one lesson I did learn from my father was how not to be a bad father. He showed me exactly what I didn’t want to be. Through my own divorce, my kids were the top priority. I have readily sacrificed and will continue to sacrifice to give them every ounce of happiness I can give them. I don’t know if I succeeded. And I’m sure they both have good and bad stories of their childhood. But, I know I can lay down ever night in my bed and be confident that I always put their needs first.

My kids were conceived when I was very young. I have tried from day one to give them my best because they deserve nothing less. They have never been a burden. Sure they have tested my patience to almost the breaking point and pushed every one of my buttons and they’ve taken advantage of me, but that’s OK. They have given me years and years of happiness. They have hugged me. They have spent time with me when they would have rather been with their friends. They call me—a lot. They trust me. They have put their own children’s lives in my hands without hesitation. Most of all, they have loved me unconditionally, and me them.

My children, a burden? No way.


Mike-Michael Collard is one of my life-long friends. We cruised many back roads in his vintage ‘70 Mustang “back in the day.” Professionally, he has driven a truck over-the-road for as long as I can remember. Too many long roads have given him time to overthink everything and hone his outspoken, independent, hell-bent attitude. With a little coaxing I convinced him to share some of his writing with me to publish here. When not on the road he spends a lot of weekends spoiling his six grandkids and anxiously awaiting the arrival of the seventh.