Thursday, January 31, 2008

Done with this hellish day, y'all.
The Meeting from Hell was as long as expected, but all of my prep paid off and it went relatively well. Two of the people who attended commented afterward that my presentation was solid, and I felt that way too. By the end of the third meeting today, thought, I could barely sit up straight.

But, after school I managed to get a hair cut, drive home (and find a good parking place!) in the deepening snow, drop off a rent check, do early voting two minutes before the end of the last day, and get my book for book club. It's funny how one becomes more productive when one's plate suddenly cleans up.

On another note, I have a new favorite kid I work with. He's three and has a head of bright red hair and has the Irish-est of Irish names. I love holding his hand and walking in the hall to my speech room because he moves like a mile an hour: it's almost like we move backward, we're so slow. He's mellow and I think naturally quiet, although his language is getting pretty awesome at this point. Anyway, his absolute favorite activity is to play animal sounds bingo, where we spread out all of these animal pictures and then listen to a CD of animal sounds. We've done it enough now, that he beats me to my over the top loud animal imitations (you haven't lived till you've heard this kid say "gobblegobbleGOBBLE"). Last week he melted my cold dead heart when he pointed to the picture of a chick and said: "So soft?" It killed. This week he expanded it to: "Baby chick so soft?" Talk about a Cute Overload living experience.

Also: I'm watching "Muriel's Wedding" again, and what an odd, strange movie, but it draws me in every time.

Lastly: it's supposed to snow between 7-12 inches tonight. Jealous?

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

When it rains...
I'm halfway through my week o' crap. For some reason, everything has culminated into this week. I have several large meetings at work (which all require lots of paperwork) including the Meeting From Hell (which is tomorrow), report cards were due, and I had to do this massive training for Early Intervention. EI is my side job that is fun but the credentialing process is a gargantuan pain in the ass.

Let's talk about the EI training first: it's usually three days in person, but they did start online modules (this year!) so you can do those and then attend a one-day mandatory meeting. The one-day mandatory meeting? Doesn't occur for another few months, so it had to be today. I'm grateful since going for ONE day is waaaay better than going for three, but I'll complain still. See, I was initially told that the online training would be like an hour and a half or two. Wrong. It ended up being 26 different modules that ranged from 15 minutes to 45 minutes each. It took me about a week to get done. Oy. The in-person training today was definitely relatively painless, though, and it was nice to get some questions answered and to meet some other providers.

[Another observation: Early Intervention people tend to have little terms for the kids, which I love. Usually it's stuff like: "little guy," or "kiddo," or "little one." Today I heard a new one that I adore the most. The trainer referred to the kids she sees as "cookies."]

The training today was at a far-away suburb, and because of the terrible weather last night, the roads were covered with fresh salt. I drove on three different highways and by the time I was nearing my destination, my windshield was absolutely frosted with salt and I was helpless since my windshield wiper fluid was frozen solid. Every time I tried it, my wipers would spread the salt around, kind of like frosting a cake. It was getting kind of scary, so much so that I ended up pulling into a little side street so I could wipe stuff down (yay for Clorox wipes!). But, as I pulled into the side street my tires lost traction on the accumulated snow and my civic did a complete 180. It was extremely frightening, but luckily, no one was behind me and no one was coming. I just took a deep breath, righted the car, and got the car into some random parking lot.

My level of bitterness at that point for having to haul ass to the way out suburbs and risk life and limb for a training I didn't want to attend? High.

So, yeah, the training ended up being okay and I got home safely (although I did get a random scattershot pebble/rock hit my car causing the tiniest of cracks).

Now I have to prep for Meeting from Hell tomorrow. The good news is that I am slated to present first, and I will get it over with. In fact, I feel almost ecstatic that it will soon be done with and I no longer have to dread this damn thing! And after that, two more meetings, and lots of kids to make up.

I foresee being dead to the world tomorrow evening.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Sick as a dog
I've been sick all weekend, and--MAN--does it annoy me that I never get sick during the weekdays and I'm taken out for the count on my weekends. It was weird: I was feeling great Friday evening, but as the evening wore on my throat got raw and my body temperature went up. I spent the entire weekend sleeping and napping, and am spending this holiday (Happy MLK Day!) in my pajamas and sleeping off the rest of this sickness. Today I can finally swallow without immense pain, so I think I'll be back in the saddle tomorrow (just in time to get back to work: hooray!).

This has been the sickest I've been in a long time, so it's definitely a little strange. I've actually had to cancel plans and appointments because of it, which rarely happens.

Back to the couch.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Did I tell you about last weekend?
Hillary was visiting from Australia and we had a NU-reunion-ilicious weekend and hit up lots of spots. It was super fun to see her and all of the NU ladeeeez so much.

I also watched two very good movies:
1. The Lives of Others: Todd and I watched the DVD, and it was grrreat.

2. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly: I went with the NU girls since the book was a book club selection (one of the books I skipped, though), and the movie features speech therapy. It was beautifully filmed and I bawled at the end. Luckily Lauren came prepared with Kleenex.

I heartily recommend both movies.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Holy Crap.
I am one lazy bastard. It's been over a month since I've last posted. I don't really have a good excuse, except that I was on break from work (which was like the two fastest weeks in the history of time), and visited home and got to catch up with the entire family. I slept, ate lots of delicious food, watched an entire bus load of movies, shopped, and caught up with friends when I could. Todd joined me in DC before New Years, and we rang in the big event at Matt's place again in the company of Anne and Nate, Suzi and Tom, and Annie and Ben and all of the other guests.

This was the first week back at work, and it's been slowly, slowly getting my act together. Right now I'm knee-deep in lists: I need to submit my certification forms for being a SLP (which involved a wild goose chase of signatures), resubmit a form to get my official IL license, take some free online course to re-up my Early Intervention temporary credential and plan a wedding. Dude.

Interestingly enough, I was filling out one of the above mentioned forms today and as I was filling in dates, I realized that this marks my one year anniversary at my job: one year exactly. Time sure does fly, people.

Oh yes: and I'm also attempting to get into fighting shape and am back on South Beach Diet. I finished the first of the initial hard two weeks. I erred a couple of times, but for the most part I'm pretty proud of myself, and even within these past two weeks, I can feel my general appetite shrinking. What do I love most about SBD? The amount of avocado one gets to eat. And that it doesn't keep me from drinking coffee. And sugar-free fudgsicles. I'm down three pounds after this first week, which even though is 99% water weight, is motivating like crazy. Last night at book club, which is like my most favoritest snacking time of the month, I managed to stay away from BOTH the red wine and the delicious dips and basil rolls that Sarah made. Trick of the trade: sit far away from the snacks and eat a big dinner beforehand.