31 December 2008

I did it!

Met my goal of indexing 10,000 names this year! Actually, I exceeded it by 32, making 15,032 names total. I kinda want to make next year's goal 12,000, which would be 1,000/month, but I think I'd better just stick with 10,000 again because I don't have a nursing baby to keep me at the computer for hours at a time.

27 December 2008

Where's my crystal ball?

I want to know when the RIF will happen. I want to know how long we'll have once they announce it. I want to know for absolutely sure whether or not James will lose his job (pretty sure on this one). I want to know what (if any) position they will offer him within TYC. I want to know where that position will be.

I want to know if a Youth Counselor position will open up in Concord within the next few weeks. I want to know if James will get an interview for that Court Counselor position in Charlotte that he applied to. I want to know if it would be worth it for him to fly out there just for an interview.

I want to know if we're moving to North Carolina, or possibly some other place in Texas just until the end of the summer and then to McAllen if he got the South Texas College teaching job. I want to know for sure when/if we'd lose the Axia thing if he took that job.

I want some idea of what the future holds. It's been 3.5 weeks of nothing but questions, questions and more questions. The closer we get to getting some answers, the more nervous I get.

Sigh. At least tomorrow is Sunday. Sounds like I need it, right?

Christmas Eve

Elizabeth had been so enamored of stacking/restacking and distributing/redistributing the Christmas presents that we had to take them from under the tree and lock them up in the library for a while.
On Christmas Eve we let her put them back under the tree.

As you can see, they didn't stay under the tree for long. Both girls got tons of enjoyment from all their gifts while they were still (mostly) wrapped.

As bedtime approached we let them open their matching Princess PJs and Daddy read The Christmas Story (I can't wait until they're old enough to start acting it out!).

Elizabeth was determined NOT to go to bed. She was not leaving her treasure hoarde! We let her sleep like this for a couple of hours before Daddy carried her to bed, protesting loudly even half-asleep!

But of course she had to go to bed so Santa could work his magic. (Pretty gender-balanced for a house of 2 little girls, don't you think?)

19 December 2008

I just indexed Edward Cullen

Ok, this is too cool! Working on a batch of Massachusetts death records from 1915 tonight I just indexed an Edward Cullen. Cause of death? "Cerebral Hemorrhage"

Yeah, not making this up!

16 December 2008

"You can't stop the signal"

Mr. Universe isn't the only one hooked into everything anymore.....

I have my new toy up and running. I'm on "exploding appendix" duty at the hospital with a youth, so here is my chance to hack into the hospital servers and discover what really happened to the Reavers....

....err, I mean, I can use the hospital's free wi-fi link to go only and find things to do for the next 12+ hours. Yes, I just barely got home from work when I got the call, but hey, it's overtime that has to get paid, and I get to work on my Axia College stuff, watch movies, and take a nap all on the clock!

11 December 2008

Amelia dressed herself

Well, she brought me each item of clothing piece by piece after her bath this morning and insisted that I put it on. Too cute!

Oh, and my 16.5 month old is wearing 3-6 month pants in this picture and the length is perfect.

09 December 2008

Educate me

It's been a not-s0-fun week of sickies around here, so I've spent most of my time letting Amelia nap on me while I poke around looking for jobs and houses. (Being stuck at the computer because Amelia won't sleep away from me brings on flashbacks to last year at this time!)

One thing I've realized in doing this is that I don't know how much to budget for utilities. Of course this is something that varies and I understand that, but I really don't have much of a clue, which is crazy since I've lived out on my own for 15 years now! But I've always lived somewhere with (mostly) paid utilities.

In Denton I paid electric and that was it. So I know how much electric costs for a small one bedroom apartment with the only occupant gone all day (and how much it is when the apartment sits empty for a couple of months at a time while you jaunt across the country). I also know that Mom and Dad's electric bill can be higher than their mortgage payment. But that's a HUGE range! So, say James gets that job in Concord, NC and we are living in a 3 bedroom house. Probably an older one, so not the best weatherproofing. What am I looking at for electric? And some of the houses have gas heating...would that make a big difference in price?

Then, what else is there? Water? What does that run? (Katie and Chad need not reply!)
Trash? The only time we've "paid" for trash was to get a sticker in Madisonville so that one of our cars (wisely chose James' car) could drive into the dump and drop off our trash.

Anything else? Phones and internet I know about (sure hope we get good cheap high speed wherever we end up). TV we probably won't end up paying for (just buying a converter box).

Just trying to work out hypothetical budgets in order to know how much we can afford for rent, but that really depends on how much we are paying for other utilities. Of course James has to get a job first (and technically he hasn't even lost his here, yet) but I'm trying to do what I can now to figure out the possibilities (no use getting a job we can't live off of). And, yes, I'm largely obsessing over gaining some kind of illusion of control. Humor me.

05 December 2008

Here ya go, Olivia

Here's our Routan Baby. Have to say, I think ours is cuter than yours. But I guess I'm biased.

03 December 2008

I was afraid of this

Central Office in Austin just went through a round of RIF. E-mail came out today extending it to the facilities. They want Case Manager loads to be 16. After working with an overloaded caseload and a CM shortage most of the 3+ years we've been here, loads are currently at an all-time low and number of CMs is at an all-time high. Looks like at least half of the CM positions will be cut...and there is still a very real possibility of the facility, if not the entire agency, being shut down.
James has a phone interview today with Axia College, to be a part-time online instructor for the University of Phoenix. All of their instructors are full-time professionals, working in the field they teach. We were looking at this as a way to really escalate our debt snowball, but now we really may need it just to help make up for the housing benefit here. When we have job-hunted in the past we've found that James could get a similar salary elsewhere (about 40,000/year) but having to add rent/utilities into our budget is obviously a huge hit.
So please pray for us at this time, and if you know of any good jobs (hopefully without losing any semblance of family life/church attendence, i.e. not dependent on crazy schedules/massive overtime) for someone with a Masters in Criminal Justice and 3 years experience in Juvenile Justice...let us know!

02 December 2008

Elder Wirthlin passed away

From the LDS Newsroom

SALT LAKE CITY 2 December 2008 Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin, the oldest living apostle of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,died last night, age 91.
Elder Wirthlin had gone to bed at his Salt Lake City home, and died peacefully at about 11:30 pm of causes incident to age. His oldest daughter, Jane Wirthlin Parker, was present. A member of the family had been staying and caring for Elder Wirthlin, whose wife, Elisa Young Rogers Wirthlin, died in 2006.
He had continued to work at his office right up until the Thanksgiving holiday.
Funeral arrangements will be announced.