Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Yeah, well.....

So I didn't keep up.  Life happened.  Need I say more?  We are so busy, particularly me.  What's new with us?
  • Jake has a new job.  He is the assistant store manager and lab manager at LensCrafters in Bozeman.  After losing his job in December, he considered joining the military, going back to college, moving AGAIN to stay in prosthetics and orthotics, and then this job fell into his lap.  He is most excited about the positive work environment and "atta-boys" he receives.  His last place of employment was so negative all the time.  He works mall hours, which isn't great for the family.  We miss the 9-5 thing, but overall, things are better so we will take it!  Jake is scheduled for Gamma Knife surgery at Mayo Clinic in late July.  Thanks to his pursuing the military, a detailed medical exam was needed.  This resulted in finding out that he AVM that we thought was eliminated from his brain in 1999 is not completely gone.  We will make a vacation out of this trip and Jake will recover in Michigan.  He cannot join the military because of this problem. 
  • I have 3 jobs!  I am subbing a couple of days a week now.  I changed my availability from all grades to just 7-12.  My goal with subbing was to get my foot in the door so I can get a full time job.  Subbing at the elementary level doesn't really give me the exposure I want.  I recently started working for Sylvan Learning Center.  I am teaching math and reading and I love it.  Like Jake, I am pleased with the atmosphere and positive work environment of this new job.  Everything is positive and motivating at Sylvan.  Finally, I recenlty became a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant.  I have used the products off and on for years and just fell in love with them all over again.  My goal to "try a little harder to be a little cuter" has blossomed into a little part-time venture that gets me makeup and skin care products for 1/2 price.  In addition to my work, I am still the chauffer, cook, laundress, maid, tutor, piano and guitar instructor, preschool teacher, nurse, etc.....
  • Gabe is thriving.  He has often struggled to stay organized and motivated when it comes to school.  After all, "Mom, school is just one little thing!"  but with the help of his principal, teachers, tutors, and a little stint with a therapist, he is doing much better.  His confidence is growing and his smile is more frequent.  He has loads of friends in the neighborhood and is so excited that the weather is nice enough for him to ride to their houses, around the neighborhood, around the little pond, to the store, etc.  He is very conscious of returning home on time now that he has a new watch!  He is anxiously awaiting a time when the pond is warm enough to allow him to take out his 2 man inflatable boat!  Gabe's recent band concert was a success!  He is an excellent drummer.  He is also learning the guitar at home and is just about to finish his first lesson book.  He is beginning to play songs that really sound like music that we can sing along to!
  • Poor Layne has had a fairly sickly winter.  She had strep and ear infections several times in a row which finallly culminated in a tonsillectomy last week.  As the doctor warned us, she felt great on days 1-3.  Then she felt awful on day 4.  Great on day 5, and awful on day 6.  She is on a regimen of overlapping Tylenol and Ibuprofen and she knows, to the second, when it is time for her next dose.  Poor baby.  On a brighter note, she is doing fine in school.  Her report card reads, "Student is a pleasure to have in class.  Attitude and effort are commendable."  That makes a momma proud.     However, it also reads, "socializing interferes with studies."  Well, the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  Layne recently finished up a season of dance classes with a recital where she was the star (in my opinion).  She was also fantastic in her recent choir concert and shines when she sings to Disney Sing It at home.  Layne is in a little piano playing slump right now, since her sicknesses have kept her down, or working on makeup work from school.  Sometimes it is just too hard to do it all!!
  • Isaac is addicted to the Wii.  Sad but true.  We are all so busy that he just makes his own fun in his games.  He loves all things Mario (cart, galaxy, mario vs donkey kong, super mario, blah blah).  He also plays Indiana Jones quite a bit.  Luckily, he goes to preschool when I sub, and he plays with friends and toys there!  He also plays with his neighbor-buddy Teagan quite a bit.  Right this second, they are acting out that one is Yoshi and the other is Luigi.  Isaac is learning to read using the online version of the "Explode the Code" program that I used with Gabe and Layne.  It is more fun for this little techno-boy to play his way to reading than it is to use the old fashioned workbooks.  He is doing great.  He can read any 3 letter word with a vowel in between, along with a handful of sight words.  He also can identifly and duplicate all his colors, numbers, shapes, etc.  He's pretty smart.