Wednesday, October 28, 2009

When it rains, it pours

When I originally started this blog, I had intended to work through the difficulties of being laid off.  I think I'll expand on it now, especially seeing as there's not much to talk about regarding "living in the world of the formerly employed."  But I AM struggling with some parenting issues.  So I might as well write about those, and perhaps doing so will help me.  If I get some great advice along the way... even better!

I'm sure every being in the northern hemisphere is familiar with the term.  It's a term often used to describe just about any misbehavior on the part of a boy.  It's also a real disorder.  I had thought we were living in the gray; our son can be so difficult and challenging.  Now the school is recommending he get tested.  I guess to be perfectly honest, I've been expecting we get this request since preschool.

I'm terrified to give him meds.  I don't say this to minimize or belittle anyone who does give their child ADHD meds, but I am terrified to alter my son's brain chemistry.  He's a brilliant child.  Objectively speaking, he's brilliant.  Would meds open up his brain or dull it?  Will they make him more susceptible to addiction in the future, or will they unlock more potential?  Are meds "the easy way out" or is my pride preventing me from helping him?  I suppose all these questions are normal for most parents as they approach this diagnosis.  (For the record, I'll drop dead of a heart attack from surprise if he is NOT diagnosed as ADHD).

Mostly... today I feel like a failure.  I got my first COBRA insurance bill, parents in the neighborhood have spoken to us about our son's behavior, and I'm just generally feeling like a lump.  I failed enough professionally to be seen as expendible, it seems as if everyone hates my kid, and I'm not really rocking the housewife thing.

Dietary options
I've been researching the ADHD thing quite a bit the past month and came across Dr. Bob today.  I'm sure there are other like minded practitioners out there, but Dr Bob is the guy I found.  At any rate, he proffers a higher protein, sugar free diet with flaxseed oil.  His book was not available from my nearby Borders, so I'll oder it.  In the meantime, I've purchased the flaxseed oil and a couple other supplements he's talked about.  Can't hurt, right?  Another element of the diet/lifestyle is the elimination of trans-fats.

Prayers are appreciated
I know God is in control, and that things will work out just fine, but I'm having a hard time with the now.  Any prayers are very appreciated.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Life is back to normal!

The happy hunter is back from his trip.  Life is more normal.  Now I can have a little more time to devote to studying for the GRE, which admittedly, I've not been doing as I'd planned.  I have a lot of vocabulary cards that I haven't reviewed, and I need to review more strategy.  I have just a few items to complete in order to fully complete my application.

It's really easy to get sucked into this apathetic vortex.  Time flies by.  Game ON, Amy... Game ON.

I've found that I spend too much time on the computer.  I'm used to spending a lot of time at the computer.  But now no one is paying me to do it.  It's mostly wasted time.  The earth will still continue to spin if my latest thought isn't posted on facebook.  I developed a great schedule, but it would seem as if it hasn't been effectively implemented.  Define, measure, analyze, improve, control.  Well, I have been lazy about the last step there!


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Another day, another... unemployment claim??

It is not easy to find three jobs to apply for in a week.  Not here anyway.  Even if I branch out from my previous role... unless I want to be an apartment manager or try to sell some great new product for "an exciting startup venture" there's not much out there.  In fact, there are quite a few scams out there.  One particular job I applied for netted me four spam emails prompting me to sign up for some service in order to make it to the "next step" in the process.  Yeah, I don't have to pay $14.95 per month to sign up for your credit report scam in order to apply for a job.  You can take my social and do it yourself if it's something that needs to be done.  It's also really strange for one position to get so many emails from completely different domains.  Huh.  Yeah, I'm not stupid.

So, I qualify for the TAA benefits!  Because I was laid off once before (when I was pregnant with my first) because my job went overseas, I have an opportunity to receive education!  I'm a bit of a tricky case for them, though, as my "claim" is old (though it doesn't expire), but I'm rolling.  My current homework is to find two schools for what "I want to be when I grow up" and they'll pick the cheaper of the two.  There are only two schools offering MBAs in Healthcare here, and the program I've been looking at is the cheapest, so SCORE!  I also have to call employers and ask them a series of questions, and essentially make a case for why the government should pay for my schooling... why I'll be a more productive citizen or something.  Mostly I think they want people to REALLY want the schooling, to weed out the ones just wanting a free check.

Anyway, all's going well on the schooling front.  I'm quite excited!

Thanks to my friend, Dez!
She was going through her closet and found a bunch of shirts that will suit my needs (as stated in the previous post).  What a life saver!!!  I really am a fortunate chick!

Sick and "Single"
The hubs has been hunting and I caught a bug.  Woe is me.  Yesterday found me in bed.  My oldest went to school, and the youngest watched "The Sandlot" no less than 4 times yesterday.  Poor kid.  Today is a better day.  It will be nice for my wayward hunter to come home so I can get a bit more rest.  At least I have the energy to be a couch potato today.  Times like these make me wonder how on earth the single moms do it!  Being "single" for a week is hard enough!

My sister and her three boys were here this week!  It was exhausting and awesome!  My family only makes boys, or so it would seem.  We went to the pumpkin patch, got crayon melted all over the laundry, all sorts of fun!  Oh, I should mention that we discovered a cure for the crayon by the miracle of google:
one cup each of: borax, vinegar, laundry detergent (we used Ecos), and shout.  It was a miracle.

At any rate, things are moving along.  My domestic tasks have been neglected due to visitors and illness, but they'll be caught up here in no time!  Now to complete my school application tasks and my TAA homework!  Cheerio!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My wardrobe isn't suitable

Now that the season has made it's final descent into the cooler trend, I've realized that my wardrobe isn't all that suitable for stay-at-home mommyhood.  Slacks and button down shirts are  GREAT for the office, but not so much to make PB&J and clean the floors.  The pity of it is that I have less disposable income to go out and remedy the situation.  I don't want to wear sweatpants all day, everyday, but I do need to dress down into more of the "sporty" realm.  Jeans and cotton tops.  Or something.  Another element of my identity to change...

The days are getting shorter.  I can't help but think back to how I used to go in to work while it was dark, and it would be dark when it was time to go home.  But NOW, I get to see daylight.  Real daylight.  I have the ultimate window office.  With a nice front and back patio.  :)  Plus, my coffee is far superior (all hail the keurig).

More good news!  My parents recently installed an Ooma.  It's a voip device that you pay $250 for the hardware, and there are no monthly fees.  We'll see how their phone number porting works, and if it's easy enough, we'll do it.  That will be another bill down!  And I'm thinking it would justify the expense of an iPhone???  would be cheaper than a landline and cell bill overall...will have to wait and see.

Friday, October 9, 2009

I think I'm IN!

I had my TAA orientation this week, and I think I'm going to have my schooling paid for!  YAY!!  My job went overseas 8 years ago, and because of that, I received two years worth of education benefits that can never expire.  I still need to meet with a counsellor to determine if I have a solid plan, and that the program I'm about to enter is a good one, etc.  I'm pretty hopeful.  The program is at a State University and has a 98% placement rate within 90 days in a high demand/ high growth industry!  Healtcare!  Wish me luck!  I'm still leaving the possibility that I don't acutally qualify open in my head.  I really don't want to be disappointed with this!

In the meantime, I'm still plugging along with the old job search. 

The holidays are coming
A friend recently wrote about holiday baking.  Now I'm all excited about the idea of baking.  I'll actually have TIME to bake this year!  I won't be battling the snow packed roads and traffic for an hour and a half every evening to pick up the boys from the sitter and school.  (Several inches of packed snow and ice on the roads really impacts the intersections)!  My weekends won't be consumed with getting chores done.  I can make fudge, gingersnaps, sugar cookies... MORE!  I can give treats away to people who have a love/hate relationship with receiving such goodies.  I can go out in the snow with my little guy and come inside to a yummy smelling house!  I won't have to rely on candles to accomplish the yummy smelling house!  Oh, to enjoy the coffee while watching a Pixar DVD with my favorite cuddle bug and a cup of coffee (and/or cocoa).

Life is good. 

Monday, October 5, 2009

Wait, it's October??

News flash!  We are well into October.  You have got to be kidding me!  I was thinking about this earlier today.  The change in seasons came way way too quickly.  It feels off.  I'm thinking that's because time passes differently when one is not employed.  Well, I suppose it passes exactly the same, but it feels different.  So October is surprising.  Though I'm loving the cooler weather.

I got the boys cozied up witn a couple new hats and gloves.  This stuff must be procured early in the season. I've learned this lesson.  Do not wait for the sale.  Don't do it.  There will be nothing to choose from.  Not one item in the right size, all the good colors will be gone in your size, etc.  Just not worth the $4.86 you'd save.  Trust me.  I've been there.

I also did the math and realized that I spent 20% of my life with my former employer.  No wonder it was difficult to fully process that I was no longer necessary there.  So much of my identity was wrapped up in that place.  Though they gave my my degree and my six sigma education as well as various and sundry experiences, and none of that stayed within the card-keyed doors. 

Chasing the dream... School
Tomorrow is the day I go to see if the Government will apologize to me via education benefits for making it easy for my job to be deported 8 years ago.  Wish me luck!  I'm still chasing down the education trail.  Full on!

Refer news
In other good news, I am now the proud owner of a pretty LG refrigerator.  Seven year warranty on the compressor.  This is a good thing.  Though I suppose it means the thing will go out in eight years.  Perhaps we should start saving for the replacement now???  I'll tell you, though, it's so nice to have shelves and drawers, and not have to sift through a cooler to find the mustard.  We are so spoiled by technology!

I've been taking the Aleve for my gout.  Gout is a sexy word for "gooey arthritis."  It's hot.  You should see me walk in the mornings.  Sight to behold.  Someting you can't un-see.  At any rate, I now have heartburn.  From the Aleve.  The only other times I've had heartburn have been during my pregnancies.  I know what you are thinking, and that's not funny.  Nor is it creative.  It's the Aleve.  Need to get better at the whole "take this with food" deal.

Coming this month:
The hubs goes hunting again.  And the sis comes to visit.  Fun to be had by all!  I'm excited to to the pumpkin patch with 5 boys (she has three... my family only produces the XY flavor).  I'm hoping for a lot of photo ops with the kiddos, and imbibing in the Bux for the girls.  :D  Anyone want to join us for apple pies?

Friday, October 2, 2009


The fridge is no longer buzzing. This would be because it is no longer functioning at all, so it's been unplugged. So we now have a 36" cooler on the back porch containing the important groceries. When is Monday??? Oy. I'll tell you, I'll be so thankful to have a fridge again. Seriously, am I THAT spoiled that 3 days without one is a "hardship?"

So, today was good. Movie was cute, popcorn was tasty, Cole had a friend over, and his mom seems like a great lady. The neighborhood park is really as fantastic as I'd hoped! It's a great social tool, and a nice, close, safe place for kids to play.

I'm not even all that tired. Nice. I hope to sleep tonight, though! Perhaps I'm not so tired because I haven't done much in the way of chores??? I did mop. And empty/load/empty/load the dishwasher.

Anyway, that's more than enough droll detail on my "to do" list. :)

I'm looking forward to Monday for the fridge, and Tuesday because I'll have lunch with work friends and go on to get some answers regarding education benefits. Should be a good week. I'm also hoping the weather dries up a bit this weekend so I can take some pictures of the boys in the fall colors while it lasts! Wish me luck!

Murphey lives!

It was inevitable.  A four digit purchase was so clear in the crystal ball, wasn't it?  That's how it happens.  A major job/life change equals an appliance going out.  [C sub l = n < 1000] <-- For my geek buddies. So we purchased a new refrigerator today.  Yay.  That $1200 was burning a hole in my pocket.  I didn't have any other plans for it.  Like to live off of it if we have to in the near future.

Ah, well, if that's the worst thing that happens this year, we're in good shape.

Here's how the conversation with the hubs went last night:

Me: Dear, The freezer is out.  I had to move everything to the deep freezer in the garage.  You know how we thought it didn't get shut all the way last week?  I think it's a bigger problem than that.  Hear that buzzing every minute or so?  I'm pretty sure it's the compressor.  I think we should just cut our losses, suck it up, save a hundred bucks on a service call and get a new one.
Him: Well, we won't know that FOR SURE if we don't have a tech come out.
Me: We've needed a tech annually for seven years on this thing, it's a frigidaire like the freezer we replaced a year ago, and the compressor failure was just like this one
Him: I don't want to have to spend a thousand bucks if we don't have to, let's call a tech.

Wasn't worth an argument.  He did have a very valid point.  He called a tech who told him over the phone it was the compressor and that we should save our money on a service call and go replace the thing.  (It's $100 for a service call and about $700-800 to replace the compressor).  So we were both right, I guess.

Note to self: consider appliance repair as a fall back occupation

Good news, bad news:
The good news: we have a pretty titanium LG job with a 7 year warranty on the compressor.  :)  I think I got a pretty good price on it!  One day I'll do a Product Rage Review on Fridgidaire products.  The bad news: the next open delivery date is Monday, so I have three full days (plus whatever the partial is on monday) to listen to the buzzing every minute.

Sleep is for the weak.
So I'm typing here with my iTunes playing loud enough to distract me from the buzzing but not so loud as to disturb the fam.  It's 1:21 am right now.  I took a whole benadryl.  Used to be that half of one knocked me out.  The Trazodone hasn't worked fantastically well, so I thought I'd give the OTC remedies another try.  Silly, silly me.  Interesting how Tom Petty is "Running Down a Dream." and I can't even find the map.

There was something else floating through the lazy susan of my midnight mind... it's gone away.  I am pretty sure the only way to retrieve the thought is to futile-ly attempt sleep again.

The kiddos
My guys are the best things ever.  For serious.  The youngest picked me some weeds, like three year olds do so well.  He's so proud of himself when he does this.  His round little cheeks practically hide his adorable hazel eyes.  He notices that one dandelion stem is bent and the "flower" looks unwell.  He quickly runs to the closet and retrieves a small strip of scotch tape and "fixes" it.  (I can hear my small audience's "aaaaws" over the 'net). 

My eldest is quite seriously VERY smart.  He's a brilliant kid.  I spent about an hour with him reading his "Book of knowledge" from Usborne (a super-duper publisher, by the way... check them out) about blood, the heart and lungs.  We followed the links listed in the book to see some great video clips and illustrations and descriptions.  He was so enthralled.  Then he got tired of reading.  LOL.  I had been buying him standard kids' reading fare: Henry Higgins and Ramona, the stuff I loved when I was young.  He isn't interested.  He wants facts.  I didn't know kids came in that flavor. 

Just had to brag them up a bit.  :)  Tomorrow we go to the movies!  MMmmmm, popcorn!