There has been quite a bit going on at the ARPSmith household and I decided to set the blogging aside for a little while, my mind just wasn't in it. If you have any interest at all with some of what is going on, read the next few paragraphs, if not skip ahead to the killer cards Zippy Zappy from Torren' Up Cards sent my way a little ways back.
One of the distractions that pulled me away was getting a new puppy. We got Thunder from a rescue center about 5-6 weeks ago and he has already tripled in size from 5.5 pounds to 17 pounds. He is starting to calm down a bit and the potty training is taking hold. For the first couple weeks he was waking up 2-3 times/night so I was hitting the sack early taking away from my hobby time. For the last couple weeks he is staying quiet in his crate throughout the night which is nice from the sleeping and time perspective. He is turning out to be a great dog and good with the kids - I am pretty excited about the new addition to the family.
Another fun distraction was a nice 4-night vacation to Cambria. Cambria is a small town on the central coast of California. We rented a beach house right across the street from the ocean and it was amazing and so relaxing. We took our 2nd tour of Hearst Castle, saw some resting sea lions on the beach, saw some whales off the coast and sat on the patio watching the sunset each night with the tide crashing in. The kids has a blast playing in the ocean even though the water was cold and it was pretty windy. It was just what we (and especially me) needed - 5 days and 4 nights of relaxation and just getting away from it all.
On the job front, things have been stressful. My boss "retired early" in February under duress. We moved about 2 years ago for me to move into this job and it really hasn't been easy. The boss was difficult to work for - she was in over her head and struggling medically as well. The combination caused inappropriate behavior and inconsistency to be the norm. Her departure was the right thing for the business and pleased me personally, the work environment has dramatically improved. One of my peers and I were put in place as co-leaders and really made some nice progress. In everyone in the office's mind (including me) I was the obvious choice to succeed the boss but the process to name a successor has drawn on for over 5 months.
I found out on Monday that I didn't get the job, they recruited someone from outside our area of the business. On paper I am much more qualified but the leadership team decided they wanted a fresh look and a new leadership team. I got feedback that my interview went as well as possible and that the work I have done in co-leadership was very strong - they just wanted a new perspective. From a business perspective, I get it - from a personal perspective it sucks. However it appears the work I have done the last few months could/should pay off - my boss is creating a new position and strongly encouraged me to apply (which I did). From an HR perspective they have to post and interview for the job but the description was written in a way that not many people outside of me would be qualified. I am hoping they make a quick decision but think good thoughts for me if you can.
Strangely I am more in limbo now than I was a week ago but my stress level is much lower and I feel more at peace than I have in months. I think Tom Petty was onto something when he sang "The Waiting is the Hardest Part."
My mind just wasn't in writing, even about cards, with my mood being what it was but I have had some time over the last 2-3 weeks to do some organization of my cards and card room. I have gotten all my Giants and Player Collection cards into their respective binders, organized some supplies, got some cards into top loaders and started a couple longer term projects. I am finally updating my USC Trojan football player checklist (up to Polamalu alphabetically) and I am sorting and inventorying all my relic and auto cards that don't fit into my various collections. My plan is to send some out in trade packages and list the rest on Sports Card Forum to see if I can get a few bucks for them. I have only done the Baseball Relics to this point and have 240 that I would like to move. I am hoping to finish a few organization and cosmetic things in my room then share some photos of my collection on this blog.
All right, so you are caught up on the major events in my life, time for some cards. I got an amazing Zippy Zapping a little ways back and when I was inventorying the cards and putting them into the binders I quickly came to the realization that this amazing trade package had to be featured in my reentry post. Here are the goods: