Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I dislike Nevada Teacher Licensing.

Okay, so this is another mini rant that happens to be largely connected to this one that I posted about in MARCH.  Meaning, I tried to get this figured out and cleared up 5 months ago and I still don't have my license renewed.  After I called a few more times and left at least one more phone message, I waited for a reply about how to get my fingerprint provision cleared. (If you have an answering machine, but don't return calls, the least you can do is state that in your voice mail greeting.)  Finally, in July I picked the whole thing back up and decided that I really needed to talk to someone about renewing my license that was to expire on 8/28/2011.  I called, but the NV licensing dept. no longer accepts phone calls.  D-u-m-b.  (Again, why have a phone number if the message on it says, "Email us.")  So, I email them, but after 2 weeks and no response, I decide I need to go into the licensing office.  I go in with my question and wouldn't ya know: the "system is down" so they can't view my license or tell me anything about getting my fingerprints cleared.  I can, however, pay my $80, turn in my form, and wait for an email.  Great, because I already have total faith in their ability to email.  Not.  No emails come and I get a request from a teacher (friend of ours) to sub for his class tomorrow.  I log on to the find-sub-jobs system, but my "personal record contains an expiration date that prevents me from being assigned to any jobs."  I immediately sent an email to the licensing dept. and received an auto response saying that because my license had expired, I now need to submit 6 university/college credits to reapply.  WHAT?!  Shortly thereafter, I packed Ty in the car and we drove to the office to get this figured out.  The good news: because I have my receipt from my $80 fee and application dated before my license expired I'm not required to reapply and submit credits.  (Phew!) The questionable news: they'd look for my fingerprint record because the provision should have been removed 3 years ago.  I received a phone call about 2 hours after leaving the office that they'd found my record and the provision was removed.  The BAD news: the office is still processing the July renewals/applications and I won't have mine for about a month.  Meaning I won't be able to work for a month because of a mistake that was made by THEM and wasn't cleared up by THEM despite my attempts figure it out!  If you can't tell, this makes me a bit angry.  When the office employee called to tell me they found my fingerprint record I asked if they would please expedite my renewal so I could work.  She told me that she can't and I said, "So you're telling me that because of a mistake made, I can't work for a month?"  Her retort, "Well, I thought you'd be happy because we removed the provision."  Yeah, 3 years late doesn't exactly make me "happy."  Anyway, obviously this is a vent and writing helps me to be over it.  I may even delete this later.

On a lighter note, Ty is pushing through 3 molar right now and has been a little cranky/tantrum-y today.  Oh, I guess that's not much of a "lighter note."  Uh...butterflies, rainbows, raindrops on roses, ice cream, frosting and pretzels...there, that's better.  I suppose I can be happy that I'm not working and get to spend more time with my family.  :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

And one last thing: The Heat.

It's hot in Las Vegas.  Duh.  You knew that when you decided to move here, so there's really no sense in complaining about it.  I, personally, would probably rather have extreme heat (with AC, of course) rather than extreme cold.  When we got back from our 2-month summer excursions up north, our AC had been off, so I turned it on knowing that it would take a while to cool our apartment down.  36 hours later, we were wondering why it was still 95 degrees indoors!  (Yuck.)  We had a bit of a rough night sleeping--you better know I cuddled up with a squirt bottle--and finding motivation to get up and unpack since moving would create more heat.  Turns out something just needed to be reset in our system and now the air is blowing nicely...and probably expensively.

We had a "heat warning" on Wednesday and Thursday of last week with temperatures reaching around 114.  I understand that it's important to point out any oddities in the weather, but once it gets to above 100 degrees, it might as well be 114.  Really, though.  It's not like I'm planning on being in the sun all day, anyway.  The worst part about the heat here is its inability to chill out (hehe).  The "lows" reach the mid-80s at night.  And by night I mean 2 a.m. because when we checked at 9 p.m. a few days ago, it was still over 100.  Anyway, the good news is we're not melting.  The bad?  The AC in our car sounds like it's dying.  :( 

Happy Summer, everyone.

Bits and Pieces

In no particular order, here are things I deem of note:
-Today is the first day of school for many across the state of Nevada including Russell.  He wasn't particularly excited about going back to class, but summer can only last so long.
-Today also marks the day of my "new leaf" program, which actually isn't quite formed yet.  I have some goals that I plan to accomplish starting today.  They include:
   ~following a budget (to be created during Family Home Evening tonight)
   ~exercising at least 3 times a week.  My secret is out: I am poo at exercising and don't do it.  Sure, I walk around plenty of stores pushing a stroller, but it's definitely not for the purpose of exercising.  I have to start somewhere, so 3x sounds doable to me.   
   ~waking up at/before 7:30 a.m., which really isn't that early, but I need a definite "wake up" time.  (Exceptions apply to nights that are rough for Ty: I'm the helper-parent-at-night due to the fact that I don't have school.)
-I may or may not have used the excuse of Ty's rough night last night (he took a nap from 5-10:20 p.m., but I didn't want to wake him up and was awake from 10:20-12 a.m. and finally went to sleep!) to not have to wake up "early" so I stayed up even later and read The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  I read about 200 pages yesterday, which is more than I probably read last year.  (Okay, that's an exaggeration, but the book is really good--sucks you in!)
-Last night Ty--for the first time ever--peed on me.  I was changing his diaper and was a bit slow, but he fired and got me on my leg (among other things).  It scared me, which scared him and he started bawling.  Big baby.  Uhh...I mean, poor little guy.
-I want to buy school supplies.  I have no need for them at the moment; we're still pretty stocked up from previous years, but they're just so cheap right now.  Buying school supplies is like celebrating a holiday.
-Before my good dream about my 10-year high school reunion, I had a dream that I had a Middle Eastern stalker who came to our front door and Russell said, "Oh, yeah, go on back to our room and see her.  She's still asleep."  Seriously, Russell?!  How could you betray me?  I'm pretty sure I'm over it because it was only a dream...  Interpret that, please someone.
-Ty is fun.  SUH-WEET!  I was just about to type, "I would put recent pictures up, but I've misplaced my camera...again," but I looked up from the computer screen and saw our camera sitting on a little shelf.  I don't know why I didn't see it there before.  Russell will be so proud of me for actually finding something.  To celebrate this victory, here's a picture from a few weeks ago.  We were playing at the park and Ty kinda face-planted in the sand giving a lovely 2/3 sand beard.  (Ignore my goofy look)

That is all for now.  I have to get back to reading my book!

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Beefstick

Russell and I have adopted the title of "Beefstick" to mean "the bigger man, the one who does good stuff despite circumstance/actions taken against them."  It came about a few months back when we were having a conversation and I told Russell I would like to be called Beefstick.  He then informed me that it was a man's nickname and not for me.  Later that evening, I did something nice (like the dishes, made dinner, got him a treat...stuff I usually do, I guess) for him even though he was poking a bit of fun at me (easy to do) and I then, rightfully could claim the title of beefstick because, at the time, I was the bigger man.  There you go: the origin of the Beefstick.

That said, I just had an opportunity to be the Beefstick and I'm indulging myself for a moment and basking in my beefsticky-ness and it makes me happy.  That is all.  :)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ty-Ty's Tie Party!

Since the Ty guy is only 1 and so far the only word he says for sure is "more" (as in, give me more food), he didn't really have much of a say in the theme for the celebration of his 1st birthday.  I took the liberty of going campy and filled some of my empty brain space with some "tie-riffic" ideas for his tie-themed party!  I kinda do have fun doing corny stuff like this, so watch out world for the annual cheese-filled birthday parties of the future!  Since most of my fam was going to be together the 1st week of August, we decided to celebrate with them.  Ty was lucky to have his cousins and lots of aunts, uncles, and even great-grandparents there!

(These pictures are all out of order, but I don't feel like putting them in order...sorry.)
A ball!  Ty knows just what to do with these and is always happy to have one.  The kid's got a rocket-arm already!
 This gift was definitely popular with the children...and it's still in the box!
 This is funny to me, but it's not really how I feel.  I just can't keep the boys away!
 Uncle Kai-Kai and his formal dinner with "Mr. Swift" and "Mr. Espinoza."
 Generous cousins offering to help Ty with his new books.  (Thanks, dollar store for lift-the-flap books I don't care if Ty rips!) 
 Nom-nomin' some birtday cake!
 It was always a treat to lick the candles from the cake.  (Anyone else do that?) Our genius little guy took htat one step further and ate part of the wax chunks missing.  Oops.
 "Happy Birthday, dear Ty-ty, Happy Birthday to you!"  And please don't judge me on the cake.  I did what I could with the little that we had.  It's not very easy to do full-on cake plastic surgery and design with limited vacation materials.  In case you couldn't tell, it's supposed to be a tie.
 The popular "Pin the Tie on Ty" game.  Just about everyone got in on the action!
 And the victors are: Carl and Mor-mor (my mom).  Good ol' dad didn't fare too well...his tie was practically down the hall, hence the goofy-eye glasses prize.
 Our tux-and-tie-wearing strawberries.  Again, with limited resources, it was difficult.  Julia, my mom, and I did the best we could.
 Russell hard at work placing his tie.
Uhh...Grandma?  We're over here.  As in, in this room.  To be fair to her, G-g'pa did spin her around and ended with her pointing in the wrong direction.
All the party guests (minus Curt taking the picture) posed under the tie banner.  Please note the lovely custom ties in lieu of party hats. I think Ty's the only one without one on: his lasted about 2 minutes before he pulled it off.  It was so drool-covered that it was falling apart (it is only paper), so Russell came to the rescue with his Wolf tie as a substitute.
 Dinner included bow TIE pasta salad, hot dogs/brats wearing mustard TIEs (if you chose to put your mustard on in the shape of a tie), salad (couldn't think of any more "tie" food, and we actually wanted a rounded meal, so that's what we got), and fruit (including blueberries, Ty's current fave).  Delish.
 Tina asked G-g'pa to smile big and boy, did he! (These are my mom's parents.)
 The spread.
We had such a fun time that we didn't even get to our special "Tie Walk" candy bar game (like a cake walk) or our "Tied-leg Race" (3-legged race)!  Thanks to all who came/helped! Ty (I) had a lovely time.

Next year Ty may actually have a say in what type of party he'd like.  Russell says that we should do a "Number 2"-themed party with a lot of...chocolate-looking stuff.  I dunno about that one.  Either way, be looking forward to some fun times next year!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Cheers to 3 Years.

Although this is a little late (I have some catching up to do--who blogs while on vacation?), the sentiment and importance is the same.

On our anniversary we went to a Reno Aces game (AAA team) without the munchkin.  We even paid the extra $2 for seats instead of sitting on the lawn!  Actually, we really liked where our seats were--nice view of the field and bullpen.  Not that we watched the whole thing...3.5 hours into the game, the score was 10-5 and we were only in the 7th inning.
As luck would have it, July 26th was also $.50 hot dog night!  Instead of going out to dinner, we ate at the ballpark.  In addition to hot dogs (which were less than awesome, but worth 2 quarters) we had nachos and a big drink.  Well, we had most of the nachos...some didn't quite make the walk to our seats, but the nacho cheese stain came out of Russell's shirt quite nicely--don't worry.  Here are our spoils: 6 hot dog wrappers formerly wrapping 6 hot dogs.  :)
 BIG thanks to Ty's babysitters, Travis and Melissa Neu.  Ty has a fun time playing with do we!
One of my gifts to Russell (in addition to a remote-controlled helicopter) was tickets to a taping of "The Price is Right" when we were in SoCal.  Yes, this was a present for me, too, but it was SO fun!
 No, we didn't win any new cars, but we were exhausted after hours of waiting around and a seriously high-energy show.  We'll be going back for sure and we'll bring you with us.  (Thanks for watching Ty, Mom and Tina.)  Don't forget to watch the show on November 10th!!!  We look like this:
Happy 3rd Anniversary, Russell.  You are my favorite: favorite friend, favorite cuddler, favorite bug-vacuum-upper, favorite toast-maker, and favorite husband.  We have a fun time and I'm happy to have many more fun times in the future.  Thanks for having the chutzpah to find my number and ask me out.  I'm eternally glad you did.  Love you, Rufflebumpkins.