First Week Back: Changes

This week has been so many things: nerve wracking, scary, hopeful, challenging, somber, tiring, physically demanding…. and yet, here we are at the end like all things the first week back does not last forever.

I knew Monday 10 minutes into work that there were going to be such huge changes this week. I decided after a new staff member introduced themselves at the first meeting and then said, “and it was nice meeting you all but I just got word that I’ve been transferred again,” that I had to capture my feelings each day.

(I had some issues with my website, so this post was finally able to be uploaded a week late! It’s no one’s fault per say, just a very odd glitch!)

There were so many changes on Monday. We had a new Assistant Principal, 7 “new” teachers (transfers), “new” YDS teacher, “new” ESL teachers, we lost a Gym teacher to the Science teachers (he was a science teacher first, then was PE teacher for a year, and now a Science teacher again), “new” Librarian, (our old Librarian was a classroom teacher that was learning to be a librarian and is back in the classroom) and some teachers have changed grade levels and subjects to boot!

On a personal level, I was informed that I would be a Music teacher solely. This is… it was disappointing to hear because I transferred to my current school because the Bands here/there were so large. The teacher needed help because 70 kids at once can be a lot. We were just starting to understand how to co-teach Band and really seeing the fruits of our labors. So it was a little bittersweet to know it’s done for now.

Financially, teaching music is a pay cut. This is frightening because of that Disney downpayment we made back in June. It became more frightening when Ryan called to tell me he was not longer a Band Director as well, cutting his salary down by a nice chunk as well. Again I am thinking of this huge trip that I have already sunk $1000 into and now I’m like “…. what will we do?” It was A LOT all at once.

But. As I sat there, processing as a person does when they receive such news, many things went through my mind:

One, I am a kick butt teacher. Hands down I know music. I may not be a savant or anything, but I can teach music to kids. So changing to teaching Music full time and not Band full time will not be bad for my students. They won’t get a subpar, blah education. (Though I need an upgrade on my Music materials, technology has changed a little in 4 years!)

Two, WE HAVE JOBS. I have NO IDEA if I will be able to say that by day 20. I don’t. People made some comments to me today about “showing them we need you,” and “we have to give them no reason not to question,” and “I’m trying to leave no doubt.” Which made me feel a little doubtful about my lasting 20 days even though they REALLY need me to teach Music or the other resource classes will be at 30 to 35 kids each for each resource teacher. So they need me so far and thank the Lord that I have a job!

Three, we can be more economical. Ry and I should really practice portion control when eating anyway… so this makes that and little things like watching our pennies a real thing. We HAVE to. I’m not losing the Disney money we put as a downpayment, I’m not going to worry about what CDubs may need for school, because we can do this and be better with our money. Because thank the Lord we both are still employed.

So, instead of crying like I would have done in the past, I sat there and problem solved…. because y’all I am an emotional crier. Very Happy? I cry. Very Sad? I cry. Very excited? I cry. I. CRY. So I’m kind of impressed with my brain/face/tear ducts because I handled this sudden change for us both really well. I didn’t jump to outlandish conclusions or anything.

While I was having this period of growth my co-teacher, a veteran teacher of 20 years decided to go up front and explain what making me a Music teacher really means for my salary. They didn’t know up in the front office. They are just trying to make things work and keep as many of us as possible and I completely respect that. I also really respect and adore my co-teacher for fighting so I could teach one Band class this year, thus making me a BAND TEACHER again. That’s right, I am still a Band teachers as long as I teach one class. They picked the smallest grade level where me teaching Band as well would not effect the numbers in the other rooms (Art, computers, and PE). If just my co-teacher had 50 kids in Band everyone else, including me, would teach 10 people per class. So we are shooting for 35 to 40 kids for this Band class. Thank you co-teacher for going to bat for me!

I called my husband with the news, (if this works out which it sounds like it will) then we are only out a chunk of one salary not two! I also remembered we have after school clubs via the 21st Century Grant and I get paid for that, and we don’t have to pay for daycare anymore (duh).

Okay, so I can do this and I STILL HAVE A JOB. (Do you detect a theme in my gratefulness?)

That said, I still had a lot to get ready but at least I’m in the same room! I decided to totally redo the layout now that I have more time to set up as well.

My co-teacher’s husband came by and helped us move all the large cumbersome stuff and my co-teacher got her room almost completely together! (I guess I’ll have to think of another name for her since we won’t truly be co-teaching all day like we used to)

I’ve still got a lot to do… but it will be worth it. The theme this year is bright colors and rainbow like.

So I felt like it was a very emotional day… then my husband called and it’s been decided that he WILL be a Band teacher after all too! At least they hope the schedule is set in such a way that he can. They got him some help so there will still be Music at his school and Band. Now I know for a fact many people pulled that together and I will be praying for them and are truly in a state of thankfulness for that miracle!

Whew! That’s just day one! I’m hoping the other days feel smaller… and less emotional!

Thank the Lord I am still employed! Thank you! God is so Good!

Tuesday was nothing compared to Monday. Monday felt like a whole week and Tuesday was like a long morning!

We had a meeting about our individual teacher websites and mine is pretty awesome. I’m proud of it and I only had to adjust the welcome image, the schedule changed (oh shoot I need to edit the footer on the page I forgot!), and hide the Spring Band Trip page (since it is not even Fall yet!). Then we could go to our rooms.

I moved a lot of large plastic containers full of books and decorations. I set out new things and old. I vetoed some fun items in lieu of some more practical things and locked up some instruments for Music. (They are just to fun and tempting to leave out!)

My teacher friend helped me hang a dry erase board in the back of the room. I am rubbish at anything using your depth perception. Stairs? Bah! Driving! Nope! Hanging or drawing anything straight? Yeah right. Also she is like the strongest woman I know, so she strong armed my cheap IKEA drill into that temporary wall (it’s solid and we have permission to do these things but it’s not original to the building and can be removed easier that a true wall) and made those screws do right! I am excited it’s now up!!

My teacher friend is all done with her room, and it looks great. My room looks like the plate of food a kid doesn’t really want to eat. You know how they move stuff around and it just looks like they are eating, but they aren’t? Well my room looks like it’s coming together but it’s not. There is still stuff everywhere. It’s crazy.

At least I have applied pink grapefruit wipes to all dusty surfaces, hung a impossibly large calendar, and found the highlighters!

I also found out at tonight’s board meeting that since July 30th forty five more people noped out of the county or retired. So that means 145 people left. So now just 45 more jobs are left to be cut. I am still praying just in case… extra prayer never hurt anybody as far as I know.

I have to ask myself, why do I move all my stuff? It’s so much work. Never mind the layout might actually be better this year, it’s a lot of moving things. My co-teacher K is done with her room. I’m still wondering if I should add more color.

I learned about some policies today that we need to implement and had a large brainstorming session with multiple teachers and so veteran teachers online. I appreciate their insights so much. It really takes a team to solve a puzzle sometimes.

Thursday was a lot like Wednesday in that I moved a lot of things around, melted some skin off my hands (high temp glue guns are no joke), swept, hung more decorations, covered up an obsolete heater with music paper making it look like a weirdly placed shelf, and just tried to make a beige classroom look like a colorful, energetic, fabulous classroom! I may have actually sought out other teachers on purpose and spoke with them. *shock*

Friday we had an Arts Department meeting at one of the large high schools. It was again, a lot of changes. Our department overall was tasked with cutting, individuals/positions. You could hear a pin drop when this was announced. However, 15 jobs were eliminated because a great deal of folks did not come back, another classroom, or retired. Five of those positions were open and simply closed for the time being. While it’s sad to know that people left, and worse there are schools missing an important element of the Arts or maybe a reduction in the Arts, people’s hands were tied here. It’s not like we had a choice and we are lucky we are valued as apart of the educational team. Thankfully PSRC is looking to educate the whole child, and sees the wonderful things we do.

We had an item exchange (I was so excited about this) and we were able to share things we may not use as often and get things we needed! I was blessed to get some new art supplies! I like to use visual art, in my limited way, to enhance what I teach in music/band. You can draw what the music sounds like to you, you can sketch what emotions the piece causes you to have, you can share your feelings and thoughts in artful ways! Writing is so important but sometimes our kids need another way to express themselves. (Especially 5th graders bridging that gap between elementary and middle school. Drawing and writing prepares them for writing more detailed works later!) so I was happy to walk away with 500 sheets of recycled newsprint paper!!

Then we spoke with our new teacher leader for middle and the leader for high school. We solidified dates, gave opinions for what clinicians should be hired for student learning events, opportunities for field trips came up and! My co-teacher and I will be the clinicians for the Middle School Honors Band group! How cool! We will pick out the songs they will be playing, teaching them for 8 hours and we will be conducting at the big concert at the RCC Auditorium. It may not seem like the most amazing thing to other people but this is stepping out into the spotlight for me. I love working with kids, but the stage still give me pre-concert jitters… not to mention my peers shall be all over the place watching me conduct, observing my teaching style, judging my every move… possibly… *shudders* It will be good for me, it will. It helps instead of one person, we will trade off and have two!

Co-teachers once again!

I would be lying if I said my thoughts were calm and assured. I hope that the county continues to see the value of my position and of course me as a teacher. I think I do very good things, dare I say, wonderful things with my students. My classroom is starting to really come together and I am really feeling more settled this year. I hope that feeling is an indication of how the school year will go for me! Any thoughts, prayers, well wishes, and good vibes are appreciated! Now I have to look forward to open house!!!

Sunny Summer Fun!

Sorry I haven’t been around or posting in the past week. I have been and currently are on vacation. I know you aren’t really supposed to tell people when you’re gone, it’s not safe. However, we will be on our way back sooner than later, and I have a moment of peace to sit and collect my thoughts.

It’s been a good week and some, we’ve gone to the beach a lot.

So much so that I’ve developed a sun burn on my legs (I haven’t sunburned my legs since I was a little girl). It itches! I have a rash on both hands and feet, it’s torturous. I’m trying not to itch but man! It’s hard to not sneak in a scratch here or there.

CDubs has been the king of many sandcastles and we even took a trip to Medieval Times. We all agreed we that the horses were beautiful but Pirates at the beach was much better!

CDubs is afraid of large bodies of water. It’s called Thalassophobia. He has an absolute meltdown freak out if you walk him to a lake, or a pond. The ocean is the ultimate evil and he cannot imagine even letting one little wave splash the side of his foot in passing.

So this is why it was so huge when we got him in the pool this week. He has learned to propel himself around without latching into us like a suffocating vine! Look at my boy go:

I am very proud! He can’t wait to wake up and go to the pool every day. So that is super cool, I think!

We’ve been able to sleep in a bit too, and enjoy the company of family, for the most part. We’ve done a lot of fun stuff for the little guy. He loves puzzles!

It’s the lighting. My husband is not wearing sunglasses inside!

And like I said the pool, the beach, and we’ve eaten all sorts of kid friendly foods. While I am sure my cholesterol is all over the place… and I’ve had so much dairy I think I may fall out… it’s been nice to see everyone eating so well.

Truly it has been a low key sort of vacation. Today we will be going shopping for school clothes for CDubs. Then, back to the pool. I’ve begged off so I can do laundry and clean up the room. Just because it’s not my house doesn’t mean we trash the place!

Here’s to vacations and enjoying just being!

Have you all been out and about adventuring over these last few months? Feel free to drop a link to a post or video of your adventures! I’d love to see what you are up to that I may have missed! I’ll go comment too, honest!

If We were Having Drinks: I’d Ask for a Rain Check

I feel like gum on the underside of a desk. I feel all sticky and gross and no one should ever want to touch me. I feel like someone tried to scrape me off the underside of the desk as well, but I’m still clinging on.

I’ve been sick for about a week and a half. The last time we spoke I told you I was experiencing breast pain. Well it’s better but they still hurt. I used to feel nothing and now I am aware they are there. The pain is anywhere from a 4 to a 2. Compression helps, I don’t need the heat anymore and the Bactrium has run its course. The infection is gone but something is up. The doctor has decided it’s hormones and I’ve decided he’s a quack. The man never read my chart guys. He asked me stupid questions that were in the chart. I answered one wrong on accident and he didn’t even notice until I realized he had no idea to correct me. Then suddenly he knew what it was, and it may very well be hormones. I just don’t like how… uninformed he is. How he has no idea what he told me last time, does read the notes so I have to repeat myself and how patronizing he is when I do. I don’t like how he tells me to go pick out my next appointment and they put me in a room and decide without consulting me what day and time. So I’m not going back unless I need an emergency mammogram again. I am not a medical professional but you should I don’t know, read my blessed chart.

In other news I am in the slump on the continuum. It says first year teachers but that’s utter bollocks. It’s every year. They just don’t want to scare the newbies:

Mines is a little different, usually I just hit Disillusionment around February and hold on until April then rise up towards May and June. In June I reflect and July and anticipation hits in August.

I think I had a earlier drop thanks to being sick and the breast cancer/something bigger issue in December. I mean we were talking Lupus at one point. Blessed depressing that all was.

By the by “blessed” replaces all curse words and makes me sound even more Southern than I am. However blessing everything is much better than having my son inform me the raspberries are “Assberries,” because you know mommy has the mouth of a blessed sailor. You also have to say it southern, it’s not “blessed” it’s “bless-ed.” Give it a try, people will still look at you like you’re nuts it just won’t be while covering the ears of their children.

It just sounds better.

On another note I’ve lost 12 lbs on my diet officially, and I am blessed starving.

To say I am irritable and in need of chips, cheese products, ice cream and the like is an understatement. I never eat sweets and junk a lot before the diet but I miss my daily bag of chips. If we don’t buy another tin of mixed nuts soon, someone may die.

I don’t mind the salads (my phone is so shook by the diet changes that it auto corrected salad to sales. Poor dear). I don’t mind more veg in my diet. I care that the salty goodness is gone.

Sigh. Blessed diet.

But Ry’s blood pressure is down to 150/100 and that’s like a big deal (guys he was constantly in stroking out levels. No one understands how he is alive). He celebrated with a salad and a snickers bar. Then I told him no more snickers bars for the next 3 months. Such is life.

I am excited that at the end of the month I will be paid for the first time since before Christmas. The next 5 or 6 months are going to suck money wise. We have to do something stupid with our money for daycare. We will be getting less for our dependent care and having to scrape together more then we will be “reimbursed” in the fall when he is in school. It’s dumb. I don’t get why we can’t keep getting what we had but for 6 more months and then stop. It’s dummmmmb. Ah well. It is what it is.

Well I am off to bed. Got school tomorrow and a concert coming up and I’m sure there is a benchmark in there someplace. Enjoy your week!

If We Were Having Drinks: Back to School Edition 2019

Well hello! Can I tell you things have been off the chain? Let’s have a coca (I made it for everyone this year as a present!) and chat!

If we were having drinks I’d have to invite you over to my place. Being out in public is taxing right now because I feel my best in a sports bra. I also happen to look crazy uniboobed in a sport bra and my clothes don’t fit as well. My right breast is still hurting it’s been 3 weeks. I am not so sure if this course if antibiotics is really working. The binding/compressing my chest is the only way I sleep comfortably at night. I live for the times I put a heating pad on my chest. All of these seem to point to infection (compressions and heat) but the pills no longer make me feel better when I take a new dose and the Aleve is a joke. The pain is more near the surface and all I want to do is come home, make dinner and lay down with a heating pad. It’s…. discouraging. Next Thursday I have a follow up at the breast imaging center and I’ll be telling them all about this. Could it be a nerve condition? It doesn’t sound like Lupus, or breast cancer, or anything diagnosable that I’ve heard of… I would just like to not ruin my liver, or kidneys, and also not hurt.

I’ve also been feeling very low energy, which also points towards something infection like or sickness related. My house was truly looking good and then the medicines stopped working and now, like I said I just lay around after dinner falling asleep. I’m trying to use my energy this weekend for catching up a little and of course, progress reports are due Monday so I’m getting those updated!

My Tupperware business is going well… I appreciate that I can help people solve their problems in their kitchens! I am not like the people you see at the end of the Tupperware magazines with legions of Consultants following me, selling $5,000 or more a month…. no l, I doing a very modest job and I am enjoying it too. I think if I were one of those consultants (I mentioned) it might take the fun out of it. All of those responsibilities on top of being an educator would be very hard for me. I am lucky, and blessed I do all the business that I do, even if I had no sales in December! If I could ask for one thing, it would be to have a Tupperware party or two in Jan or Feb. that would be fun! I might do one myself just because, maybe another mystery host party! We will see!

CDubs is doing pretty well, the dinosaur craze is continuing. I convinced him to clean up in the living room tonight like an oviraptor would, it was funny and we actually got thing clean.

My son has watched the movie My Neighbour Totoro every night this past week. I think I am tasing a Miyazaki fan! He plans to leave the kernels from the popcorn we ate outside to see if Totoro will leave him some acorns. I have to find me some acorns in the pitch dark night tonight or all is lost!

That’s about it, we had a very short drink break this week!

I hope everyone has a good week, we will have to talk soon, I have to go put my little Totoro to bed!!

Hurricane Florence Clean Up Weekend 2 and now Tropical Storm Michael…

Well it has been another week, no school still (though I came in for two mornings to make copies and do inventory some more… meet with a music rep etc.). We are on day…22 of no school (generally without the weekends there are 20 days, give or take, in a month for school teachers and children). Usually the first nine weeks ends at the end of October. We joked we would be returning to school in November, now I wonder.

So far, they are not cutting our pay and we’ve been forgiven 20 days. We will still be required to make up days as teachers I am sure. No one works for free and last time during Hurricane Matthew we added 3 weeks to the end of the year I believe. (A couple for kids but most for teachers)

I am lucky though they are paying me. If they decide to garnish our wages for the rest of the year I don’t know what I will do. They can do that, it is not above their power.

It last weekend we did a lot of wood! I have decided that mucking our homes is smelly and sad work but cutting down trees is hard work.

So is taking stumps of 100 year old trees to the road for pick up! I managed to bruise myself:

Which is stupid because I was plain useless. I dragged all I could and picked up what I could but I am weak. I am just no built for hauling things. For about 20 minutes I was afraid it was not a bruise and something more sinister (our mosquitoes are huge right now, legs and all the size of a quarter). Luckily the medical professionals in my life told me to calm down, lol.

CDubs had soccer practice this past week and did a wonderful job. Generally, he was very passive and would cry when the ball was stolen (last year). This year he is really in that ball and understands he himself doesn’t have to score for his team to win. He is interacting with the kids more too. Makes my heart happy to see my little introvert go out there and have fun! The video you watched was just a snippet of his awesomeness this season!

I am having my first Tupperware part tonight! My good friend K is hosting it at her lovely home and I hope to remember the names of all the items I am showing tonight… like the choppy-chop is really:

Power Chef…. yes…

I might be in over my head. I love Tupperware but I don’t get to talk about it a lot. So the names… they float away and become the choppy-chop, the mixer thing, the eggs maker, and the 3 in one thing. Not really professional.

Le sigh.

Would you buy a choppy-chip from me even though I make up crazy names? Maybe? Lol

This weekend we are supposed to clean up/cut down more but CDubs has a game. Not sure about that. Not to mention right now we are being pummeled by rain thanks to tropical storm Michael. We also will be having church for the first time in 3 weeks?

But still no school. Maybe Monday? Who knows. More damage to access I am sure. Be safe my dears and I’ll talk to you soon!

Weekday Beverage Share: Spring Break 2018

The idea of a weekly/weekend coffee share/beverage share post was invented by the blogger Parttimemonster. I have recently lost her blogging url and cannot find it. If you know where she is now, I’d love to give her credit/link to her blog!

I would have Lemonade by the pitcher full on my back slab-o-concrete with chocolate croissants waiting for you for this week’s catch up; it’s been awhile and I’ve got the time to actually put something out.

It’s spring break and for the first time in years I do not have the pleasure of having a guest this week. Usually my little sister comes by with her big ideas on how to get my house in hand. Its become pretty clear that the problem is we have too much stuff for our little apartment townhouse. Since I’ve donated copious bags of stuff every year for the last 4 years I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s time… for real estate. For us to own a house of our own, with property.

We are currently tossing $615 to the wind every month. Our place isn’t great, it’s not the right size, and the last windy day blew off some siding and our attic is exposed a bit to the elements…. and it’s been weeks. No fix.

So that and a laundry list of other things and the rent hike makes me think, it’s time for the lack of repairs to me my and my husband’s fault. There is just no space and no where in town to rent that is better. There is a lot of government housing here, and it’s needed (don’t get me wrong). We don’t qualify and there are people leaving town more so than renting out spaces. So after looking to rent a home, you know taking a step up from an apartment, we realized we would rather start paying on a home.

We’re heading to the big times folks.

Now I’ve been talking to folks in town, sussing out realtors, looking for rentals, looking at Trulia and Realtor dot com for a couple of months. We’ve been talking about moving seriously for less than a year. We’ve been talking about leaving this area for 5 years.

Why buy a house then?

Well, we’ve been trying to leave this place. Last year I even got two jobs 2 hours away, one for Ry and me. We just couldn’t find a place to live. It seemed like, every time we tried to leave we were being blocked from doing so in some way. I know some people don’t believe in fate or portents and the like, but I do. Now it seems like my husband does as well.

Well he always has, I just think he’s believing more in fate now.

So I sucked it up and called a realtor (I hate calling strangers) and he listened to, briefly, what we were looking for. Out of the five choices the realtor gave us, we picked four to tour. Out of the four we are looking at, three we are interested in.

Do you want to see?

One is crazy. It’s huge. This house is a little more than 3,000 square feet. Why? Well it wasn’t a house at first…

You see, I’m looking at the size of the rooms, I’m looking at the fans on the front porch, the drive through shed in the back and the sturdy tile in the living area and I realize this isn’t a house. Well it is now but it was something, like a meeting house, a small town meeting center, a something. Maybe even a church:

This is all one room. One. Room. (Do you see the air pipe back there?!)

I could put a whole Boy Scout troop in here for a sleepover. My church could host a lock-in. How would one decorate such a mammoth place?!

That’s not all, look at the kitchen:

Look at the sink:

I mean holy Lord, that’s an industrial sink (look at the granite countertops!!).

So I look at the bedrooms which look nice and I am supremely glad that the bathrooms do NOT have stalls:

I really cannot take it. What was this place?! Was it a compound?! Will the South rise again?! (I sincerely hope not)

Nah, it turns out it was a Shriner’s Club. The local club moved into a building on Main Street. The big old barn/shed is where they kept those little cars and did drive through plate sales! I suppose the bedrooms were offices and the like! One other family has lived there since they moved the club.

So it’s highly unlikely to be inhabited by le dead people (that was on my list. Seriously. I asked for homes where no one has died violent deaths: murders, suicides, etc.) . There is a huge wooded area outback as well that can be explored and CDubs does want a tree house… but how much would it cost to heat this place? To cool? These are questions for such large rooms and high ceilings!

Maybe I just also want to see the place, cause wow. Imagine!

The other two are less strange, to be sure, and have always been houses.

This one has been updated quite a bit and I do like the deck:

There is also a covered porch (I believe they mean screened in), and the kitchen is large but I hate the countertops:

Chickens are always an interesting styling choice.

And then there is this strangeness:

Why a rail? Is there a staircase there? Why?

I’m not too keen on this one…

And the last place is better than the previous (based on photos and my preferences of course):

The bathrooms really stood out to me:

Hello-o-o tile!

And the bedrooms look pretty good:

Where we live there are not many choices of schools, so it wouldn’t matter where we lived, CDubs would still go to the same schools. I mean these places are all over in and out side of town. He would still go to the same elementary even if we stayed where we live now.

All properties have varying acreage and space in between neighbors. All are edge of town towards the country side so the crime is less prevalent. Our payments on all 3 of the places would be about the same give or take $15.

So. Friday we are going to go tour all four places (one of the places I really didn’t like but Ry does want to see it, hidden gems and all that.). A friend is tagging along for the Shriner’s club visit, because she just cannot believe the size of this place! I also appreciate her coming to the most… strange property. She has owned a large home for 15+ years, renovated the place (built in the 1800’s, horsehair plaster walls, saw a flipping ghost yesterday from the chest up, not even kidding.), and knows much about owning a home. She knows questions to ask that I just wouldn’t. Could be a good template/script for the other 3 viewings. (What to say and ask about etc.) I will be researching today and tomorrow questions to ask the realtor, but if you have any suggestions, sage advice, government programs I should know about…. please share them with me!

I’m pretty darn sure there is going to HAVE to be a government loan involved. However, my parents did it, my friends did it, old neighbors, church members… it’s not like it’s a risky thing, well more so than a bank loan. I also understand overall a 30 year fixed rate mortgage would be the best for us. I also know it’s in the realtor’s best interest for us to buy a home so they will help us out with their extensive knowledge as much a possible. I also know no matter how many recent upgrades, new wiring, whatever it MUST be inspected first by a licensed home inspector.

So I’m not completely ignorant it’s just this is big folks. Big.

Let me tell you CDubs is excited. He wants a bigger room, more places to play, a tree house, a puppy, I mean his little wishes are exploding out his body! He’s like hmmmm what can I do with more room…

I personally just want to have a proper guest room. I mean yes, one for me and Ry, one for CDubs, but then another for guests. We live so far away from folks that it would be so nice to have the ability to say, “no, instead of us putting you up at a hotel (or you driving home), you can stay with us.” Maybe we won’t have to drive as much to visit family with guest rooms, because we will have one for them!

In other news, I would share this:

It seems that one should always listen to one’s doctors but keep in mind that doctors do employ technicians trained to read certain films and labs for a reason.

So my tumor has compacted smaller than it was BEFORE I had CDubs. Can’t have an MRI when your pregnant or breastfeeding after all. (Okay maybe you can when breastfeeding, not sure about that.) He was born a year after the last MRI (that they are comparing this recent one to). This could mean that it is safe to have more children. If that’s something we want to do. I am still not so sure myself. I don’t feel like it’s time to have another, if that makes sense. We may not decide on a house any time soon. It’s not just that large change that’s putting me off. It just feels like a no right now, and I’m going to respect that.

It’s not like I don’t have, thanks to modern medicine, 10 years at least maybe 15, to have another baby. Then there is adoption etc.

We will just have to see, one thing at a time. A smaller tumor is good news though.

I think on that note, we’d probably go into the kitchen and do some dishes and talk about you! Do you have anything to share? A link to a personal update or good news, bad news, inspiring news you want to share? Please comment below and enjoy your week!

Weekend Beverage Share: The Busy Month of March!

(A coffee share/beverage share is not my original idea but the original idea of parttimemonster… whose website I cannot find. If you know where her blog moved to, I’d love to link her!!)

Hey-o my friends! How are you all doing! The air still has a wintry chill, so today I think I’ll be sipping some hot coca.

I would have you join me outside on our “patio” and view our spring set up:

The little white swing is actually a bird feeder. We tried filling it with a wild bird birdseed mix. We were very disappointed at first, it seemed like nothing was eating our seeds! It took some time but we noticed only the sunflower seeds were being picked at.

We took a trip to our local tractor supply and discovered that sunflower earring birds are Song Birds. After buying a big bag I devised a plan. I threw a couple handfuls outside our back gate and filled up the swing with the new mix. Now we have birds everywhere in the morning:

We have a cardinal couple that visit, a male and female, a couple blackbirds, and lots of feisty robins.

Our cats are also getting into the habit of walks on the patio:

One is more adventurous than the other…

CDubs is also enjoying the outdoors, but for different reasons. He is turning 4 this month and to celebrate we planned a part on the only Saturday we have off this month:

He had a great time! Unfortunately, none of his daycare friends came, but luckily a lot of church friends came and so did my coworker’s kids. CDubs did not even mention that his best friend wasn’t there- which I am eternally grateful for. (He had asked me everyday if his friend was coming.) The kids from church did a great job of keeping him busy!

In other news, I had a change in medication. I changed my insurance to a better plan and my pharmacy changed pill suppliers. Last month’s pills were cheaper and the formula was different. I feel much better now than I did with the other pills. I don’t get knocked on my butt when I take them and I’m not loopy at all. The next day I’m not motion sick or anything. They are amazing and I am so glad I have them.

I also had a big appointment yesterday. Even though we left on time, and I was on time for my MRI, my MRI took longer than the person who scheduled my appointments thought. I was 40 minutes late to my second appointment. My doctor was late that morning so, when they asked if I could still be seen, she said she couldn’t punish me for being late when she had been late as well. I tried to assure her it wasn’t on purpose, but I feel like I just made her feel like I was making excuses. Ah well, I knew when they made this appointment that it was too close to the MRI. I’ll insist next time, that the appointments are further apart.

I was going to upload some pictures from my imaging cd… but my husband does have a CD drive!

I suppose it will be a mystery for another day, lol.

As I mentioned my doctor has some theories. She of course wants the films (?) analyzed by the professionals but she gave me her opinion.

So I took Ryan out to lunch and told him what she told me. It seems that my tumor has grown. When it’s a macro adenoma you’re safe, less headaches, can have babies that sort of thing. I might not be in macro adenoma land anymore. This means headaches and definitely staying on my medicine. Definitely. It also means, not only is it finically not a good idea to have children, it’s not a healthy choice for me either. Obviously if I became pregnant accidentally we would talk to my doctors like last time, but as last time, we are being careful. (My medication is for tumor compaction, it’s not a cure)

Of course, we will look forward towards official updates, measurements, test results, etc. when the time comes.

A rare occurrence allowed me to purchase another pair of Tieks:

And I am carefully, in dry weather, breaking them in. I can’t say they are stretched comfortably yet (they are leather after all), but they are on their way. I look forward to wearing these to pieces as well.

I have a cool lesson for tomorrow at church. I don’t think my PP is keen on it, but that’s the good thing about being the music leader, I can made my own decisions about music time. Still not one hundred percent on if I’m allowed to make Song choices for the program but I’ll ask my stake music leader tomorrow.

We are supposed to work on our third verse tomorrow for “If the Savior Stood beside me,” which is a song about making choices as if Jesus were right there. A very talented woman made me a prop with her handy dandy vinyl machine:

As a musician we are asked often to look at a mirror to notice things we often wouldn’t when we perform. I didn’t use to open my mouth enough when I was singing for instance. I want to talk about that briefly then have each child come up one by one and notice how they look when they sing. They aren’t allowed to share what they notice with others but take note of how they look, are their mouths open, is there space all the way back, that sort of thing. My hope is at first they notice that then focus in and see Jesus.

The idea is, though we don’t always see him there, he is there. When we go about our lives or even sing at the Primary Program Jesus is there with us. Does that change who we want to be? How we sing?

I’m hoping this makes them think and invites the spirit. I could be reading too far into this, but I think she thinks I’m being too complex. It can’t just be word all the time. We need to understand what we are singing. We aren’t little puppets. Not that she thinks that, but sometime I feel like one. I tried to call her earlier this week, yesterday, and today to talk about that and feelings I’ve had but she didn’t have time. So I’m just going to have to ambush her tomorrow. I tried man. I tried to do this over the phone in the privacy of our homes. Eh. I like her a lot but I’m not just rolling over. At the same time, I won’t cry if suddenly I’m released. I love the kids. I just feel like I’m not allowed to teach and that my music education degree is seen as a detriment instead of an asset. It’s apart of me. I have to use that knowledge. It is what it is. So drama at the meeting house tomorrow I guess…

I’m just saying, if you are to be an instrument of God’s will there is no way you can make a sound if others are clamping down your strings in order to keep you silent, or worse yet, to only allow you to play the parts that they, as humans, want to hear.

That got a little too serious for coca, sorry about that. I hope your March is going well and that many blessings go your way! Until later my friends!