Tuesday, January 31, 2006

My "fashion" blog

Why make this a fashion blog? Well, I studied fashion merchandising at BYU and got my degree in it from the school of family home and social sciences in clothing and textiles. This is also not my only blog. My xanga one is my fitness one--and it tends to cover my day-to-day life experiences too, since I get so sidetracked.

The degree I got at BYU doesn't exist anymore, in the same sense that my mom's degree (radio & tv) doesn't exist anymore. I feel maybe hers merely evolved through the years into communications. Mine may have evolved into more psychology-geared stuff. If I were a student now, that may have been what I went into--who knows.

I enjoy science--scientific stuff. It was always exciting to work with beakers and bunson burners in jr. high, wasn't it? My degree was a bachelor of science. Who knows.

I also love looking at sewing patterns, evaluationg how certain ones work for me. Today I went to Hancock fabric and didn't spend very long there, but it brought back memories of fabric shopping. I was really into sewing for a while before I got married, and after, still, too. So, anyways, fashion/sewing. They are kind of one and the same in many ways.

I like art and music, also--most stuff everyone else likes, I guess. I like spending time with my family. I like to spend time reading, gardening. I guess if I'd know off the bat I wanted to study fashion I would have had more direction. My aunts in Paris modeled, one for a real career; my mom had me take a "charm school" class when I was in 2nd grade at Montgomery Ward, and we modeled in a fashion show at the end of the course. I guess I thought it would be a fun thing to do, and like my brother said, work should be something you love so it's like play.

The tricky part, then, was to combine all the elements I loved into something that I would fall naturally into as a result of my life experiences with my family for a career choice. I had started out school thinking of studying for a very high-paying career like being an attorney, but when I went to Washington, D.C. on an internship I came to realize I should study something more up my alley, that a person could do at the same time they were a mother and a wife and all that.

Law seemed like a male-dominated business, in a way. I didn't think I'd have it in me to work a long day like that and then come home and be a mom and all that. I also wanted to get out of school and get out of debt.

I didn't declare a major till I'd been at school four years, or officially, anyways. I had trouble with my grades at one time. I was working part-time and I don't remember which courses I had*, but my grades had me on probation to where if I didn't pull them up I would be on suspension. I pulled through ok--moving in with Sister Nixon helped me focus more on my classwork by not getting so sidetracked socially. I had wanted to at least graduate, and I was able to get the degree--the piece of paper.

So where do I stand now with my major? Near graduatiun I remember hearing about a job interview I could have gone on at Motherhood Maternity Boutique from one of the bosses at the Cougareat, but I said I wasn't interested in staying in Provo/Orem at the time. Maybe I should have at least gone to the interview. If I stayed another summer I could have completed an auto mechanics class and a fourth year grammer or conversation class in French to get a minor in French. I don't regret that I went home before the cap and gown ceremony because I wanted to see my sister's wedding reception in Florida.

I had decided I wanted to work at the mall, but either at Burdines or Penneys. Penneys had a managerial training program, but didn't get back to me about it, and I must admit Burdines looked like a nicer place to work. I felt some satisfaction in the fact that I was working with fashion, not for a huge salary or anything, but it was with ladies' ready-to-wear clothing. The clothing I sold was reasonably modest and I was usually able to find stuff I liked, enough to the point where it was not easy to save money in my bank account once I started charging stuff.

I enjoyed working on the sales floor. It was an enjoyable and comfortable working environment. I was ambitious part of the time, although I didn't know what exactly all my career goals were. I enjoyed taking breaks and walking around the entire mall visiting boutiques.

I did really feel bad those times I had to work Sundays. I knew some people who refused to accept a job that had Sunday work. I needed work, though, so I took the job. I was told I'd have to work one Sunday a month, 11:45-6:15, which was a shorter day than the rest of the week shifts. The Sabbath is to be a day of rest. I used to drive to work thinking, well, you're supposed to visit the sick on Sunday, and I am driving to my job because there are some sick people there.

I made more money after college by working temp office jobs, though. In high school I had studied Business Office Education (B.O.E.) and knew shorthand, so I was able to use some of my skills during the day like that, and managed to work part-time at Burdines in the evenings from 5-9:15 pm. Holidays at a department store require the employees work, so it was kind of not always something I felt like doing, but when I look back now, I don't regret having put in that time. I worked for six years in retail, but only 1 1/2 of that was full-time. I had benefits there--dental, that I used (it covered cleaning and fluoride). The benefits were there, and they offered stock options later on, and retirement options, some of which were forfeited after not working there a certain period.

In 1988, I believe, I got a phone call from Barbizon saying that someone gave them my name who had heard I was interested in going there. They did not say who, but I remembered a lady who walked through Burdines one evening when I was at work and someone said she was a "scouting" for students. So, I went and got my diploma in 1990, which was fun, although I was very nervous and scared at the graduation.

A soon-to-be-fellow contestant who worked upstairs from me at Burdines urged me to be in a "Mary Kay Woman of the 90's" contest, but I forgot my dress shoes that evening for the dressy dress segment, and a girl lent me hers, which were unfortunately a size 9 & I sort of tripped on them going up the steps because I wear 7 1/2. The girl who won was really cute--I would have had no chance, anyways.

And, fortunately, here in Texas I qualify to be a substitute teacher since I have 60 credit hours from a university, even though I didn't major in education or anything. Well someone once said if you had to educate someone, educate a girl because she can teach her children someday.

I do not regret time spent getting an education. I was learning who I was. I hope I can educate my girls to, maybe not wait as long as I did to find a husband, and make that a priority. Money is good and important, but it's not everything.

Working for my brother in his chiropractic office was an education in itself. My brother has worked very hard in his life to be a chiropractor, and a good one. I learned more about health issues working there. The hours working there were among the best. I was off Sunday--every Sunday. I also attended some seminars which included travel and expenses--Atlanta, GA, and Orlando, FL.

I needed chiropractic care, besides, from a reverse curve (I thought it was whiplash) I believed myself to have from a car accident right before my sister's wedding.

All during my early career years, what about the most important choice in my life, not career choice, but choice of marriage partner? Well, I was looking, at times not as hard as other times. I was worried about the fact that Mom was footing the bill for my education, for the most part. I mean, I tried to keep my expenses low, but let's face it, they probably would have been lower had I skipped stuff like Hawaii.

Hawaii was not a planned for thing--Beth & Suzi from high school, also BYU roomies, were both planning to go. They convinced me that it was a practical great once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and their parents were surely going to let them go. Well, come to find out neither of them went, but I did. I don't regret having gone.

School in Hawaii was a definite eye-opening cultural experience for me where I learned a great deal and had some wonderful experiences. My good friend from Tahiti, Monique Chin Foo, was baptized in the ocean.

I remember lamenting to my brother and mom one evening that I was really ready to settle down, and when was I going to finally meet my future husband. They both very supportively assured me that they would do all they could to help me get married off. Maybe up till then I wasn't really anxious to marry; it was in my patriarchial blessing, but I wasn't in a terrible hurry, I guess.

My husband was worth the wait, definitely. I couldn't have asked for a better husband. He's thoughtful, charming, handsome. He's a wonderful father. He is really wonderful. I'm so grateful to my husband for giving me three beautiful children and for taking me to the temple, that our family can be a forever family. We had an ideal courtship--he was a wonderful fiance and always treated me very well, and continues to. I feel very blessed to have the wonderful family I have also.

I have definitely rambled today. This post is needing a lot of editing because the topics jump around a lot.

*edit: Actually, I believe I was taking political science courses such as comparative government, morality and the law, american history, public opinion and voting behavior. It would be on my transcript somewhere.


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