Tuesday, December 30, 2008

December 30, 2008 - Happy Holidays

Hey there, hi there and hello there everyone. I hope everyone had an absolutely amazing Christmas and that this New Year brings you everything you hope for:) It's been a little while since my last post and a lot has happened, but instead of writing a thousand words, I thought I would post a picture collage of the past weeks with captions ... I hope you enjoy!

What a good lookin' crew ... the ol' MMC SIFE gang, best team I've ever been on hands down!
Grandma Naber gets a surprise visit from the grandkids ... great seeing you Grandma:)

Christmas Eve celebration with Dan's parents in Shueyville. This was my first chance to start Kindling:)

Packers game at Lambeau with the fam ... need I say more?
70 degrees in Columbus, GA had nothin' on 10 degrees and snow in Iowa. So, Blake and I decided to make a snowman with a red mohawk and blue eyes while battling our dog Doc for our gloves 'Marley and Me' style!

Klein Christmas up at Grandpa's house with all of the aunts, uncles and crazy cousins ... it doesn't get any better than a Manchester celebration!

Roomate bonding time at the Irish Democrat. Hormy and I dominated Gump in pool ... I will have to say, we three roomies did pretty darn good with our ladies:)

Jenny made me the most amazing Packers blanket (to the left)! Thank you so much for everything, it was a great week of wondermousness hangin' with you:)

Can't forget Poc, MarJoan and Grandma Park for Nicolasa's birthday party on Sunday morning ... you're all awesome!

This was Christmas number one at Dad and Barb's house witht the sisters, guys and nieces. Addison and Lindsay even said hi an played with me without crying:)

Thank you so much to everyone at Aflac and in Columbus, GA for a fantacular 2008 and to all of my family and friends back home. It was probably the best Christmas yet and I have all of you to thank for it! I appreciate not only the gifts you gave me, but the time that we shared together and the memories that will last forever.
I can't wait for 2009 to begin and experience the great things that are in store. I wish you all a happy New Year and hope that all your dreams come true:)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

December 14, 2008 - It's beginning to look a lot like Chirstmas!

Hey there, hi there and hello there ... one more week and I will be saying hello from Iowa:) A special happy birthday to my pal Ashley "Kabash" Hartman and my sister Nicolasa as well as a happy anniversary to Chad and Kristal.

Someone once told me that work around the holidays was slow ... ha! It was another wonderfully busy week at Aflac, catching up on projects and gearing up for 2009 planning. The team is becoming very close-knit and we're having a great time getting work done. I'd like to see us be able to seek out more cost-saving opportunities but it appears that around every corner there is a mess that we identify or are helping to clean-up ... hopefully 2009 will allow us to do some more innovation in the department.

I had a few meetings for the ol' YP organization this week as we are preparing for 2009 as well. I decided to get a bit more involved with our signature event we're planning for the summer, our YP Gala. I think we're going to have a Young Hollywood theme, hopefully at the Civic Center. We also had our Aflac Christmas is for Kids gift handout on Saturday. It was pretty fulfilling to walk around with these families and help them pick out what most likely were the only gifts they'll have for the season ... always leaves a smile on my face:)

This past week I also had my second Dirty Santa party, this time with my old lady friends ... yes, the average age was around 60 and I was the youngest by at least 10-15 years:) They were a rowdy bunch and very fun; not to mention they had some amazing food! This week we have our PIC team Christmas party as well which is going to be a great time indeed.

Well, hopefully by now you have all received your Christmas card and poem, if not, please enjoy:

It's the most wonderful time, of the year
And now it is time to spread to you some holiday cheer.

Another year has passed in the blink of an eye
So here is a brief glance at the time gone by.

It seems so long ago that I hit a stroke of luck
But this August was my one year anniversary with the duck.

I'm now with some great folks on the Process Innovation & Control team
As the Team Leader, I'm still trying to figure out what that means;)

I continue to volunteer in the community and try new thins
By giving back to those in need, it's wonderful the joy it brings.

Time with the Literacy Alliance and coaching soccer I have lent,
But don't ask how I got involved with the Miss Georgia Pageant!

With my speaking skills that I learned back at the Mount,
I am now also a contracted speaker for Making it Count.

I even did something this year many thought I could not achieve
I am now dating a girl named Jenny, I know it's hard to believe.

We met at a wedding back in Iowa and have had a blast hanging out,
We've been skiing, to the beach, hang gliding and gone fishing for trout.
(ok, that last one is a lie, but it rhymed quite well:)

Life has been good and I'm thankful for the opportunities it lends
Much of the happiness I owe to good times with some fantacular friends.

Been back to Iowa for weddings, help with the flood and I'll be back soon
Time spent with family has been cherished this year in Vegas and Cancun.

Thank you to all of my family and friends that have visited me down here,
You are always welcome and continue to bring me tidings and good cheer:)

Being with friends anf amily back home very soon will be quite pleasin'
Thank you all and I hope you have a wondermous holiday season!

Don't know the next time I will be blogging, but until then ... have wonderful holiday cheer! See you in a week Iowa:)



Sunday, December 7, 2008

December 7, 2008 - My Favorite Word is Fantacular

Hey there, hi there and hello there to you all. I hope the holiday season is continuing to be wonderful for you and that your December started off spectacularly! Thank you again Jenny for the visit and I hope you enjoyed the Fuji and fun:) A big congrats to my dad and sister for their new gigs at Van Meter and Teach for America (LA, CA) respectfully ... you both made my week:)

This past week was, in a word, productive. Only had about 15 meetings this week, so that left me quite a bit of time to catch up on projects and start up on some new ones. We implemented a training this week to introduce some new automation that our team helped put together to save the company over $100k per year in addition to a project we finished up this week saving the company >$20k. Looking at the savings alone, our team had a pretty darn good week. Our PIC team was the first PIC team to be featured in the Employee Matters company book for our innovative Customer Experience walk-a-round Brown Paper Fair ... very exciting! This coming week will be full of planning for the 2009 business year which should be exhilarating:)

This week was full of volunteer action from start to finish. On Monday, we had our YP board meeting to try and narrow down our 2009 activity list. Then on Tuesday, we had our YP FUNdraising Dirty Santa party and planning which was a blast. Then on Saturday we got together for some early morning flap-jack-flipping for Easter Seals with their semi-annual Pancake Breakfast. Much of this week was spent in preparation of the big Favorite Word Gala. Saturday we had set-up most of the afternoon and today was the big event. As you can see, I turned into the mascot with a two-canvas outfit. One of which is my favorite word, Fantacular (a mix between Fantastic and Spectacular that will one day be in Websters:), painted by my good pal Mary Johnson from the Chamber. It was an absolutely wondermous event in partnership with the local TV station WRBL. We had around 200 people come in and bid on 101 various canvases from elementary school kids to local artists and influential community members to national celebrities like Rachel Ray, Vanna White and Chipper Jones. We helped to raise more than $2,200 for the Literacy Alliance and some of it probably had to do with the superb choice of music for the event ... the Rat Pack:)

Peter Pan at the Springer was a fun new experience on Thursday as Aflac rented out the entire theater. We also had our first planning meeting for our Hurricane Relief Trip in January with the SIFEr group of 10. Then, last night we had our Aflac Christmas party with Shaka Kahn ... wow, that was an experience. No doubt I was out there cuttin' a rug with the classic lawn-mower and shopping-cart moves! (Yup, that's a picture of my team - Haleigh).

Overall, it was a great week and I'm sure this one will go by just as fast with just as much fun! I will leave you with a fun quote from one of the canvases today:

"Smiling is infectious,

You catch it like the flu,

When someone smiled at me today,

I started smiling too!"

No matter where you are smiling in the world, people will know that you are having a good time. So, surprise someone with a smile tomorrow and see how good it can feel:)

Until next week, have good times!


ps, keep your eyes peeled for a Christmas card and Nate special poem:)