Sunday, January 28, 2007

Yet to come

Well, the worst may be yet to come. I declined the supervisor position. The one I have ranted about for weeks, or has it been months now? As I stated on the 19th of December, I didn't know if I could work for the people applying for the job... turns out I was right.

The partial offer I received from the new Ops person was pretty insulting and otherwise unacceptable (and we hadn't even talked salary.) Which leaves me in the role of "just a dispatcher" and I still need to work hard at many things. First - my job. Second - being professional about this whole thing. Third - how much to say and to whom. And fourth - respecting the new supervisors. They have a tough road ahead.

All-in-all I handled myself very well Friday and I hope I treated those hosers with more respect and dignity than they did me. I hope to be able to say just a few politically correct statements ("their offer was unacceptable" and/or "the process didn't strike me as above board, even though I could have benefited from it.") when the announcement comes out to answer questions. Plus, I still have a job I enjoy just no extra headaches. So far I come out ahead.

On a funnier note:
Bubba as upstairs watching TV... first a disclaimer: when I worked nights this was the ritual; My Honey would send Bubba upstairs to watch TV as a quiet activity before bed time, usually 7 or 7:30. The only kid-friendly channel (if you want to call it that) is Nickelodeon. Definitely not my first choice, but I wasn't home and I wasn't the one needing a break (you do what you gotta do). Alright, that said back to the story:

Bubba is upstairs watching TV tonight, I hear him saying something like "the week is finally over for Naked Brothers Band" over and over as he comes down the stairs. He comes to where I am sitting and tells me "the week is finally over for Naked Brothers Band." Now, I have seen enough of Nick to know that its some kind of new show, not really naked people in a band, but I still wonder what he is saying. So he explains it to me: "The WAIT is over. Not like how heavy it is, but like, well, you know, wait-ing" (emphasis on the -ing). Okay then, the WAIT is finally over. My little homonym-boy. Do you know any 5 year-olds that know the difference between weight and wait? Even scarier, he was quoting a commercial. Word for word.

Friday, January 26, 2007

What the ...

We are opening presents on Saturday night at the chalet. I hear my son say "What the what?" Its his new catch phrase. "What the what?" I think I brought it home from work with me.

So he is opening presents saying this phrase and then once he says "What the hell?" OOPS! Whose kid is that? My brother-in-law D and I laugh but don't say anything to him (maybe it will go away). A few minutes later I hear it again (and so does everyone else) "WHAT THE HELL?" as he opens another gift. This time the whole room laughs, including me. I pull him to the side, get down to his level and tell him that "it's not okay to say that, I know I am laughing at you, but that's not okay. "

I catch myself saying "what the hell?" several times in the next few days. I really need to watch my language!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Smart kid

Driving to the chalet on Friday we hear this from the back seat: "Yodel-odel -ay-hee-who" over and over again. When I finally asked Bubba what he was doing he tells me that he is "Saying 'hi' to the mountains." Clever. Even funny because we are entering Leavenworth, "The Bavarian Village" literally the whole town is a Bavarian theme with festivals all year round. How did he know that yodeling was the appropriate way to say "hi" to the mountains there, I have no idea. Funny kid.

Monday, January 22, 2007

The End

Finally we had our last Christmas celebration! Yes, one month late, but its finally over. The End. This was my family Christmas with my sisters, their families, mom and aunt. We all holed up together in a chalet in the mountains and had Christmas. It was nice, I just worry too much. Worry that my kids are brats, worry that my kids are keeping everyone else up, worry that my kids are going to get everyone else sick. Worry worry worry. So I had a difficult time enjoying myself. Bubba got a stuffy nose a couple days before we were supposed to go then Punkin Head came down with a cough and runny nose, plus she has trouble sleeping... we fared alright, but it did cause me too much stress.

The chalet was nice, 3 huge bedrooms, a main living room, downstairs game room and large kitchen/dining area. There was plenty of room for the 8 adults and 4 kids (under 5). Our family cohabitated in one of the king-bed rooms. We had Punkin Head's playpen in the closet (door open) to keep it out of the way, we borrowed a twin bed from the other room, put it on the floor for Bubba to sleep on and we lived the life of luxury in a king bed. That was nice! I had to roll twice to even touch My Honey, it was the teeniest bit lonely, but mostly great!

The other rooms were great too. The room we stole the twin mattress from was called a bunk room, it had twin beds built in like captains beds at one end of the room, not quite bunk beds, they were the same height (not on top of each other) and a queen bed, a huge closet (Punkin head would have fit in there too). And the third room the Master Suite had a king bed, and plenty of room for the almost-2-year olds playpen.

If we return here, eventually the kids could take over the basement. The extra mattresses could be moved down there, they could have their own area and just come up for food! But they're a little young for that. So this year Auntie-Aunt slept down there and Grandma slept in the living room the first night and then in the second bedroom because one of my sisters had to leave yesterday.

On Saturday night we opened the last of our Christmas presents - which was the whole point of going in the first place. And I'll be dammed if I didn't do the same thing as my mother and create chaos while the kids were opening presents. The ones that got wrapped anyway, I forgot to wrap my presents.

So that was the last Christmas.

And the job. I heard on Friday who the new supervisors will be. First let me say the new Ops. person came in Friday to talk with the director about the supervisor interviews. I saw her walk by and look kind of saddish in my direction like she had bad news for me. I was so totally prepared for it. She asked to see me in the office, so I went. Then came the news. I WAS IN THE TOP THREE. That means I have a supervisor position as of Feb. 1. But, she warned me, its probationary for the first year. Great, just what I need. More pressure. So looking good must have paid off. So that's The End of that saga (and the beginning of the next one.) But that's why we blog right?

Thursday, January 18, 2007

To be continued

Doesn't look like I am going to get anymore sleep tonight, I don't know what the deal is, but Puinkin Head is having trouble sleeping again. Interesting, it happens to be right when my schedule changed. I think there might just be something to that. She was awake for a couple hours after I went to work yesterday morning. Last night (just a couple hours ago) she had the same problem. She woke around 10 and didn't get back to sleep until midnight.

THEN Bubba woke up with messy pants. Honestly, this has only happened one other time since he was out of diapers. He never has accidents. NEVER. He was the easiest potty training story ever. He just started to wake up with dry diapers when he was around 2, so we put him on the potty and it took. Just like that. He visited the chiropractor yesterday, so I am sure that had something to do with it, he had been having a little trouble. So anyway, I just got him back to bed, and I am going to work at 2:30 am so whats the point? I have functioned on 3 hours of sleep for the past year, why change now? Unfortunately I have a couple meetings with big-wigs this afternoon, so I hope I can still function at 3 this afternoon. Oh yeah then a dinner thing. Sheesh, I have a long day ahead.

So I may as well jot down how the interview went: Fine. Yep, that's it *fine*. We won't hear until around the 1st of February who gets the job(s). And my feeling is this: either way I still have a job so I am prepared for what ever lies ahead.

The format: At check in, we received information for a 3-5 minute presentation for which we had 15 minutes to prepare. This was probably my strongest point. I was able to think of the solution, jot down the points I wanted to make, mull it over for a few minutes and then make the presentation. No problem. THEN its question time. It was an oral board format, so there were 6 people, each had 2 questions assigned and they just ask them one at a time. I think I did alright. I thought of some much better answers the next day, but who wouldn't? And that was it. I was in the conference room for nearly an hour. Then I was done.

So if the scoring was based in equal parts on the presentation, my paperwork (resume, evaluation etc.) and the oral board, I probably did best in the presentation area, my paperwork wasn't great and my oral board was okay. I didn't even think of the paperwork being part of the score so I didn't work that hard on preparing a resume. OOPS. But my cover letter was great. AND I didn't think of referring to the paperwork as part of the answers to my questions. Double OOPS. But, have I mentioned that I LOOKED GREAT? Yes. I. did. I clean up pretty nice. Normally we wear jeans and sweaters or t-shirts to work, so a skirt and jacket is a huge improvement. If that was part of the score, that is where I got the highest marks!

So that's that. The saga continues. And there's my alarm. Good morning.

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Have you ever rented a bunch of movies and found some kind of common thread in them even though you didn't plan it that way? Some actor/actress that is in each movie, or a similar theme or place where it takes place? Well that just happened to me, only it was books I read. I just finished for one more day by Mitch Albom and then read A Child Called "It" by Dave Pelzer. (I must finish the other two by Pelzer). The similarities were striking. Each dealt with a man's relationship with his mother. How her opinion of him affected his life. How her acceptance, or lack of it molded these men into what they were.

I find it interesting that the one who always had his mothers love and support, turned out to be the drunk loser. The one that was beat within an inch of his life, starved for love, affection and food turned out to be the one who made a huge impact on the world.

So where does that put us mothers? Should we beat our children within an inch of their lives or love them? I don't mean that for real. But looking at those two examples of mothers and children ... its just an interesting study of sociology. How their environments molded them to be who they are. How does one find that balance. The balance of too much love, too much discipline and too much freedom? Ahh, the question of every parent around.

Speaking of parents. My mom called today, she wanted to get together tomorrow night. I told her I have a Bible study I am going to, we can get together afterward. Or she could go with me. She agreed to go with me. Kind of an unusual situation I find myself in. My mom who used to send me on the van to church Sunday mornings going with me to Bible study. Interesting.

And still speaking of parents, my Dad and his family were supposed to come into town this weekend. They didn't make it. It was too cold to leave the horses. They needed fresh water every so many hours and that's a lot to ask of someone else. So my Dad say to me "I hope you didn't do any deep cleaning or anything like that." Which I actually thought was funny coming from him. If it had been said by my Mom, all hell would have broken loose. Interesting our relationships with our parents isn't it?

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Your Turn

1. The phone rings. Who do you want it to be? Anyone but a telemarketer.

2. When shopping at the grocery store, do you return your cart? When I shop with kids, rarely unless I happened to get a spot by the cart return (or the nice person helps me out) When without kids – yes.

3. In a social setting, are you more of a talker or a listener? Depends on the setting. Usually an observer.

4. If abandoned alone in the wilderness, would you survive? For a few days maybe. I can make fire and I could probably kill something, I would worry about shelter.

5. Do you like to ride horses? When I have had the chance yes. Always hate the soreness the next day(s).

6. Did you ever go to camp as a kid? Yes, counseled a couple times too.

7. What was your favorite board game as a kid? The Game of Life.

8. If a sexy person was pursuing you, but you knew he/she was taken what would you do? Well since I am taken, I would have to ward off any advances. But I would certainly entertain a fantasy or two.

9. Are you judgemental? Unfortunately it goes with the territory of my job and I have a hard time shaking it in real life.

10. Would you date someone with different religious beliefs? Yes, if they didn't include sacrifice of a child ...

11. Are you continuing your education? Formally, no. But there is always something to learn.

12. Do you know how to shoot a gun? Yes, and I have been told I have a good eye.

13. If your house was on fire, what's the first thing you'd grab? I have thought about this for a day now, definitely my kids and My Honey. Other than that? I dunno

14. How often do you read books? As often as possible. Not as much as I would like

15. Do you think more about the past, present or future? Mostly the past, sometimes the future, not enough about the present (look a the balance of my checkbook.)

16. What is your favorite children's book? Right now, The Belly Button Book by Sandra Boynton. All her books are great.

17. How tall are you? 5' 8

18. Where is your ideal house located? Of places I know, Chelan, WA. Of places I have seen pictures of; one of those huts about 50 yards out on the ocean.

19. Last person you talked to? My son. He wanted to know if we had any band aids

20. When was the last time you were at Olive Garden? Too many years 3 I think

21. What are the keys on your key chain for? One key chain for the kid-car (just the car key) one for the Jeep (just the car key) and one for everything else.

22. What did you do last night? Nothing. spent some time with the family, went to bed, read a book. for one more day Interesting read

23. Where is your current pain at? Always low back.

24. Do you like mustard? On a sandwich or cooked with ham. Plain, not spicy crap

25. Do you like your Mom and Dad? (this sounds bad) they both have their good qualities.

26. How long does it take you in the shower? As long as I can

27. What movie do you want to see right now? Austin Powers – a friend of mine did a recent impression of Fat Bastard and I need to see the rest of the movie “GET IN MAH BELLY!!”

28. Do you put lotion on your dog or cats? Lotion? Never heard of such a thing.

29. What will you do for New Year's? Nothing.

30. Do you think The Grudge was scary? Didn't see it, probably not going to find out.

31. Do you own a camera phone? Yes.

32. What's the first letter of your middle name? K

33. Who did you vote for on American Idol? Wouldn't have voted if I had watched it.

34. How many hours of sleep do you get at night? Lately? 4 if I am lucky. What I need is at least 9 or more but that is about 10 years away.

35. Do you like Care Bears? Not really

36. Do you know how to play poker? Yep. Used to partake in a poker night (on Sundays) “dime me dime one more time me” (In memory of Papa Ray)

37. Do you wear your seat belt? Always

38. What do you sleep in? Shirt (long sleeved this time of year) and some kind of pants

39. Anything big ever happen in your hometown? Yeah, but only the sex crimes about 10 years ago got national attention.

40. Is your tongue pierced? Never.

41. Who is the funniest person you know? Today, the Fat Bastard impersonator(#27)

42. Do you like funny or serious people better? Depends.

43. Did you eat a cookie today? Does a double chocolate Pirouette by Pepperidge Farms count? I had 4 today.

44. Do you use cuss words in other languages? Nope I swear in English only, wish I knew some foreign language cuss words sometimes.

45. Do you steal or pay for your music downloads? Don’t even know how. I would probably pay tho.

46. When was the last time you said "I love you" and meant it? Today to my kids and Honey.

47. Is your cell phone usually on Vibrate or ring? Lately on ring. Surprising how many less calls I miss!

48. Do you need a boyfriend/girlfriend? Not really.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Energizer bunny

This thing just keeps going and going. The supervisor job is back up for grabs. I completed my testing as I had planned and then the position was re-posted. "We want to take advantage of a group of interviewers since they will be here and we have so many openings." Sounds politically correct doesn't it? this is probably where I walk a fine line so I had better quit while I am ahead.

Suffice it to say I am back in the running, so I have been researching interview questions to be prepared. I have the hardest time with it. I also sat and talked with someone I have worked with for years that has tested for several positions recently and he had great advice.

Kids: Bubba just hasn't quite recovered from the wind storm yet. The power went out and he has been stressed about it ever since. He was a total cling-on the next two days. He would not leave my side. Literally he was within a couple INCHES for 2 days. I was so ready to go back to work.

How is work? There is NO traffic at 2:30 in the morning. But it is dark. And cold. And slow. I am so loaded on caffeine by 9 it is scary. I need to cut back already. I bought decaf coffee to take into work so I can make a pot of 50/50 next week instead of the strong stuff. Ease off it. Don't think I would ever give it up again. I really need something to be addicted to and alcohol is such a bad idea. Tasty and effective, but a bad idea.


You Are An ISFJ

The Nurturer

You have a strong need to belong, and you are very loyal.

A good listener, you excell at helping others in practical ways.

In your spare time, you enjoy engaging your senses through art, cooking, and music.

You find it easy to be devoted to one person, who you do special things for.

You would make a good interior designer, chef, or child psychologist.

Chef, not on my life. I have scars where I burn myself when I cook. The rest, yeah, maybe.

Monday, January 08, 2007

This is what happens

So I spend too many weeks agonizing about this promotional opportunity and it turns out I am missing a couple of required tests and that disqualifies me. Oops. I really didn't know what to say when the boss pulled me in to go over it with me. I had a plan for getting the tests done but I mis-read the job posting and didn't realize that they had to be done prior to Dec. 31. I finished the testing yesterday. Oh well, I am really okay with the whole thing. I was pretty close to not applying anyway so I an really not that disappointed.

In other news, we had one hellacious windstorm yesterday. Took down trees and wires all over town, blew roofs off houses, blew outbuildings around, not to mention the power outages. It was amazing. In 35 years of living here I do not remember EVER having wind like that. Ever. We get a night of wind in late February or March that pretty much brings spring with it, but this was a different beast all together.

We were slammed in dispatch. Slammed. I didn't leave my seat, quit answering phones or the radio for 5 solid hours. And that wasn't the end of it. I went in at 4am (my new shift) and didn't leave until after 6 last night. My last hour I spent scheduling to make sure that the folks that worked all night got to go home after 12 hours. At least 4 people came in early for their shift (some by 4 hours) and there were 5 of us who worked over. Additionally we had actual fire chiefs in dispatch handling calls in their areas. And a representative from one of the local ambulance companies handling their calls because of radio problems caused by the storm. It was a full house!! We logged over 780 calls. That's over 3 times our average number of calls.

Amazing. There were wind gusts up to 40 mph in town. That's crazy, we don't usually get gusts over 10 or 15 mph. Wow. The CC PUD reports that there are still people without power and it may last for a few days. Unheard of! The can usually restore power in 24 hours. Incredible.

All in all everyone pulled together pretty well to make it work. Dispatch, PUD's, law enforcement, fire departments. Everyone. The boss even came in and made sure everyone got fed. So its time for a little R & R (yes, probably the drink) and a couple days off from work. Maybe I will get a cute kid story or two.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New year, same issues

It seems appropriate to do a 2006 in review. I am just not interested. It could be the mild irritation I feel for my daughter today. She was up from 11 pm until 2 am. I am not impressed or humored at all. This must end. I tried to handle it a little different from the last 100 times, I just checked on her every 30-45 minutes (when her crying was loud enough to bother me) checked her diaper, and offered her a bottle and that was it. We (I) had been actually getting her up - well that ended last night. Didn't seem to make a difference though. She was still awake for 3 hours. Mostly quiet, but still .... I am sick of it. And my schedule changes on Sunday, yes in 4 days. I will actually go to work at 3 am so this being awake from 11-2 is a huge problem. (Unless I go to bed at 6 pm.) So it must end. Ideas?? The garage sounds good right now. Just kidding. But the spare room in the basement is having some appeal to me today. Anyway, working out my cranks.

On the bright side ... Funny Bubba story ...
My Honey hurt his back pretty bad over the weekend. He asked Bubba to bring him an ice pack out of the freezer. So Bubba is carrying the ice pack across his chest saying "I have heart burn" on his way to his dad. It was pretty funny. I tried to get a picture, but it didn't work out.

Funny Punkin Head story ...
Clothing. The child is getting pickier and pickier about clothing. I put overalls on her for the millionth time a few days ago, for some reason she thought it was the day to protest. She grabbed the straps and pretty much told me in no-uncertain-terms to get them off her. Funny, funny child.

I need some ideas for good reading material or a mindless project that will help pass time without distracting from the task at hand... something that I can put down when the radio or phone beckons. Ideas??

One last thing. Resolutions. I don't make resolutions like "I am going to exercise 3 days a week" (although I could use it) or "I am going to eat healthy this year", or even "I will be nicer to my kids." But I do try to make one major mental attitude adjustment. For example one year I just wanted to be more content. So I worked hard at being content. That kind of thing. So this year, and this is hard for me to say, I need to work on obedience/respect. I have a mild issue with authority. My parents, bosses, husband. I would rather not listen to what they are telling me to do (although I want someone to tell me what to do) and do it my way (or not at all). So, that's my new year mental attitude adjustment, to be more obedient and respectful of everyone. Yikes, now its in writing. (Maybe I will just save this as a draft).