Saturday, January 12, 2008

It's been awhile

I have now received a few notes from people asking why the blog hasn't been updated lately, so now that I have slowed down for a moment, here we go with some categorized updates with apologies to those who have not had the blog as a means of procrastination at work lately:

Family Visit
The Stein family has come and gone from Israel on their first ever visit to the Holy Land and I am pleased to report that we had a fantastic time. They got here at the end of December and stayed for 10 days that were jam-packed of sites, history, quality time, and, of course, lots of food. We basically ate our way through Israel and loved every moment of it. We had a fantastic tour guide named Hannan who provided on-going entertainment while driving us through the winding mountain roads in his Volkswagon stick-shift 10-seater van, and by the end of the 10 days, he was like another family member. The family had such a great time that they are already planning their next trip for June!

The business has really taken off in the past month. As things have evolved, the business has now split into two branches- political and non-profit. The political side is still called DLS Consulting and I am now managing two members of Knesset and am in discussions to work for a few mayors and one more member. The non-profit side evolved through a meeting with a group here that represents some Dutch foundations that give to Israeli philanthropies. They decided that they want to open a fundraising branch of their company called Quantam and have asked me to be a partner in their efforts and act as the Vice President of Resource Development. In this position, I will manage their 10 current clients and will likely merge my non-profit clients that I originally agreed to work with under the umbrella of Quantam. So, needless to say, things have gotten a bit busy over here, but I love the challenge and all of the new people I am having the opportunity to work with. Also, thanks to work, it looks like I will be in the states in mid-March in DC, NYC, and Chicago (and then, of course, a few days in MN) which will be a lot of fun.

The apartment renovations are going strong. The walls are going up and after Monday, all decisions and choices will be complete. We are hoping to be moving mid-February... fingers crossed!

Random story
A few weeks ago, I received a phone call from our interior designer, Shimirt, around 9pm. Assuming it was about the apartment, I answered. She told me that she had a strange request- her fiance was helping one of his clients create an advertisement for a new product that was made in the style of a cartoon that was to be shown to prospective investors in the USA. They had given it to professionals to do the voiceovers, but the woman who had done the voice for the "Mother" in the cartoon was apparently a heavy smoker and her voice sounded more like an old man than a sweet mother. The realized this that evening and had to submit the advertisement the next day, and they needed someone with an American accent to do the voice of the "Mother" and asked if I could do it. I said, sure, why not, and they told me they could be here to pick me up and take me to the recording studio in 15 minutes. So, 30 minutes later, I was in the recording room with the headset on and microphone in hand doing the voice of "Mother." Apparently, they were thrilled with the final product, so if all else fails, I guess I can always try a career in voiceovers...?

Yesterday was reported to be the coldest day of the winter here... it was 50 degrees and sunny! Not too shabby, eh?

Hope all is well!