Right now I manage a small group of people making product improvements on existing aircraft. It's my first time being in charge of other people and boy is it a challenge sometimes. Last week it really hit me hard as I was dealing with two very difficult situations. I had one designer that didn't double check his design and when they built up the plane it had major interferences with other nearby parts and caused us to have to rip out the parts and issue a TON of difficult rework instructions to the shop. To make matters worse, the rest of the airplane was ready to move to the next area of the factory and they were just waiting on us. So in our status meetings, when the President and CEO asks why the plane hasn't gone out the door yet...oh ya...that was our fault :(
Then at the same time I also had a significant amount of work due that was assigned to another designer. That designer does good work and is very thorough...but so thorough that everything ends up taking WAY longer than it should and is very difficult to get anything done on time. So I had one project that was causing the entire manufacturing plant to come to a halt and another project that gets high management visibility but wasn't getting done on time. It was certainly a learning experience figuring out how to work with these people effectively and get positive results without becoming a real witch.
Fortunately, the work week finally ended and I got to head to Orlando for a girls weekend, YAYY!! My mom flew in to Orlando for the weekend for my bridal shower and bachelorette so I went to her hotel and we got dinner and drinks together. We went to Landry's for dinner and it was pretty darn tasty, yum! After dinner, mom and I hung out at her hotel for a little while and then I headed over to Rachel's house to hang out with the bridesmaids. When I got there, Ashley and Gwen were hard at work making Cake Pop truffles and Rachel was supervising and opening some wine. I would say we helped Ashley make them but we really didn't...really we watched while she made a ton of beautiful purple and white cake pops. Hopefully someone was taking pics of them because I didn't even bring my camera. Once we were done with cake pops, Ashley, Gwen and I went to Beth's place to stay for Friday and Saturday night.
Saturday morning, we slept in and then Gwen and Beth went to get breakfast foods and Ashley went to start shopping for and getting ready for the shower - leaving me to lounge around, paint my nails, watch tv and relax. It was pretty sweet - they even made me biscuits and scrambled eggs for breakfast :) Once it was time for the shower to start, we headed back over to Rachel's where she and Ashley had already gotten everything ready and were waiting for us. Gradually the rest of the guests all came too - my mom, Mary, Corine, Liz, Kayla, Doreen, and the bridesmaids (Rachel, Gwen, Beth & Ashley). We ate and drank, told stories and chit-chatted, played a couple of little games and opened up presents. Everyone was so generous - I wasn't expecting to get so many presents at a shower! I thought it would be just a few little things for me or from the registry but a few people who really like to shop sent several things.
We had so much fun at the shower that we didn't realize it was already time to head out to our dinner reservations! A couple people who weren't going out with us left and the rest of us went to Beth's to change into cute little dresses and then we headed to dinner. We went to Fratelli's in Orlando - it's a little pizza and pasta place that is near some of the bars.
Dinner was tasty! And a few more people joined us for the evening. We added Renee M, Renee G, Jessica, Maggie and Mary. We were able to walk to the comedy club which was nice and they let us in for priority seating. I almost forgot to mention - the girls got me a little sash and veil to wear out for the night, heehee. We went to a show at SAK Comedy Lab in Orlando to see "Duel of Fools" which is an improv show. They had 5 main performers who would take suggestions from the audience (things like: name something you can buy at walmart, or name your favorite hobby, etc) and then turn them into comedic scenes. I was shocked how inexpensive the show was; if I lived in Orlando I think I would go there all the time. The entrance was $12 ($10 for us because we had a large group) and they had beer and wine for $4-$5 which isn't bad at all! At the end of the show, the performers even made up a little song about Ryan and I for our wedding and it was hilarious. I think Mary and Doreen video taped it so if I can get the video from them I'll put it up on here. Here's the place we went to:
Liz had to drive home that night because she had to work Sunday - what a trooper coming out with us and staying out so late! When we were getting ready to call a cab, Renee M hadn't been drinking and I realized that there were only 6 of us left besides Liz so we all crammed into Renee's car and headed back to Beth's to pass out. We had plenty of beds, pillows and blankets and finally made it to bed around 3:30am ish. Then...I slept until almost noon, LOL! I felt so bad because Renee and Jessica had already driven back to Melbourne and Gwen had already gone to the airport to head back to Texas. It was down to just Ashley H, Beth and I so we lounged on the couch and watched some TV and then eventually went and got some Chipotle before I headed home.
Overall, it was an awesome girls weekend and I'm so glad that everyone was able to come out! I feel so blessed to have so many supportive friends. Over half of the people who came were my sisters in Alpha Phi - other alumnae who I went to school with. I've always known that Alpha Phi is for a lifetime but it's so great to be able to maintain these relationships and watch them grow! Which leads me to my next topic....
As most of you know I've been helping to advise the Alpha Phi chapter - I am the VPPD Advisor so I help oversee the Vice President of Programming & Development. The VPPD is in charge of scholarship, risk management, sisterhood, rituals and ceremonies and member education. So I help her make sure the chapter's goals and activities align with the goals and procedures of Alpha Phi Inernational and I advise her when working through difficult situations. I work with other advisors who help Vice Presidents of specific areas as well as with the overall Chapter Advisor who works directly with the chapter president.
This is my first time advising and it happens to run concurrently with my first time managing people at work, and guess what? There are some striking similarities! I've worked with a few people who do a fantastic job at everything they do, and I've worked with some that are very difficult to get positive results from. We have communication breakdowns, people not performing their duties in a timely manner or not following the rules and people who don't show up or pay attention. One critical difference I see is that at work, I work with all men so with them I need to be firm and just tell them what to do sometimes in order to get the job done. But obviously with Alpha Phi it's all women so there can be some crazy hormones going on. You have to be just as tactful (if not more so) when dealing with any personnel issues and use a little more excitement and positive reinforcement when trying to get positive results from a job.
A sequence of events was compounding over the last few months that led to a decision being made that not everyone was happy with (or maybe caused a tiny panic/revolt). As a result, I have had a meeting of some sort to go to every night this week which is really trying. I don't have quite that much time to commit to Alpha Phi and still get all of my other responsibilities done. Fortunately, at our meeting this evening an agreeable outcome was reached by all parties and we can move forward (but I still have two more unrelated meetings this week). I'm hoping to get this department a little more self sufficient so that I can drop back my involvement to about once per week during normal times and maybe twice per week during extremely busy times.
You're still reading??
I can't believe you're still reading after all this! Anyways, you can see that I have had quite the hectic last 7 days so I haven't been able to post anything. I'll probably have another update soon though! On a side note, my newest nephew Greyson has been in the hospital since Friday night and just now got to go home - feel better Greyson! (moorecraziness.blogspot.com) Here's what's coming up this month:
- Halloween outfits for nieces and nephews
- Burp cloths for Greyson
- Alpha Phi tshirt quilt for the chapter to auction off at Red Dress Gala
- Alpha Phi Red Dress Gala, Alumnae Weekend and Founder's Day
- 5th Annual Spooktacular Halloween party!!