Monday, February 28, 2011

And Life Goes On

Things have been busy over the last two months. Travel in February and changes as well.

Valentines weekend we headed to Arizona for Tek's blessing. When Sharon got of work on Thursday afternoon we drove to Great Falls. As soon as we hit town we hit Sonic for Sharon's "Five Days of Sonic". We spent the night there and did some shopping both for the trip and for home. Friday evening we boarded the plane for Phoenix/Mesa. Everything was prebooked and confirmed. Or so we thought. When we arrived, we went looking for our rental car. After 15 or 20 minutes I finally found it. At the other airport in downtown Phoenix. I phoned to ask how I was expected to get my car. I was told to take a taxi. I asked if I was going to be reimbursed because I had requested the car for this airport. I was told I would have to arrange that with customer service and was given the phone number and promptly told that they were open 7 to 7 Monday to Friday. I told them that I no longer wanted the car if I was to pay $60+ dollars for a 45+ minute cab ride and pay a similar pick up fee if I did not return it to the airport downtown. I went to the first rental kiosk that was empty and rented one.

Two hours later, just after midnight, we were in Thatcher and at Dian's and David's. We crashed there until the morning when we went to check in to the hotel. Tek came to wake us up way too early. It has been a while since I was woken by a little squirmy bundle of love. But it is still enjoyable. We got up and got ready for the day. We met with Jacob, Chrissy, and family and then checked in the hotel. The weekend was spent with family and friends. We missed Kimmie, Scott, and the girls. Sunday was Tek's blessing. Monday we headed home. And me to a new old job.

The week before I got a phone call from a previous employer, Bob Moors with the Commissionaires. He wanted to know if I would consider coming back to work for him as front desk at the police station. More money and hours that are a better fit into our life style. I told him that I would like to think about it for the weekend. I went in on Monday morning to talk to him. As I walked into his office, he told me he had most of the package filled out and that I needed to sign it. He wanted me to start the next day but realized that my current employer would need some time. He asked if I could start the following Tuesday or Wednesday for training. I asked the few questions I had and agreed. I went for retraining on the following Wednesday and Thursday and was on my own Friday, Saturday. I started into my schedule on Tuesday. I work four 12's: two days, two nights, and four off.

It was like going home. I was welcomed back the older staff I had worked with before and greeted by the newer ones. I only had to learn the few new things on the computer and re-familiarize myself with the rest.

Now to work hard at getting my woodworking up and running on the web and the house renovations finished. Getting ready for gypsyhood.

That is the update. More as it develops.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 in Retrospect

2010 was an interesting year. It was a year of setbacks and blessings, which usually followed the setbacks.

It started with a change in the compensation package at the company I was working for that was not positive. It was followed 1 March with a restructuring of the leasing department. They did away with it completely and tried to hire us back as independent contractors. The contract they offered was so vague and unfavourable that it was not even worth the paper it was printed on. The severance package on the other hand was not too bad. When I finally heard from The Employment Insurance people they were willing to give me a year to find something that would give me a similar income.

In the mean time I retired to my wood working shop. After about 3 months Sharon calmly told me to get out of the house and find a job or she would kill me. I guess I was bring all kinds of sawdust into the house. About the same time as we were shopping at Costco the young fellow that was managing the cellular booth stopped me. He said he heard I was looking for a job and offered me one. I started early July at the new booth in Park Place Mall. The first of September I was transfered to Costco. I am having a good time and making some money too. I think Sharon intuitively realized I needed to be in front of people.

In May, Mom passed away. Except for the china cabinet that she left to Sharon, everything else was left to my uncle and her cat Boxer. It hurt to be left out of the will but what really bothered me was that there was not even a mention of any of the grand children and great grand children that she said she was so proud of. Over the last 6 months, we were not allowed to take anything out of the house, were expected to look after Boxer. Kimmie paid for the food and I paid for the litter. When a tenant was found in late November that would look after Boxer, we given 2 weeks to go through 60 years of clutter. A new carpet was being put in and we were also told that we had to take the old carpet out. The instructions were: "I don't want anything out of the house except the 2 pictures the Al brought back from Holland. Throw out, donate, or sell everything else." I know we threw out papers and other documents that were of historical and personal value because we didn't have the time to go through everything properly. The blessing was that we were able to save a lot of the things that meant something to us and Boxer now has a couple of roommates that are taking care of him. He was so lonely before.

The end of November I came down with a nasty body flew just as we were finishing taking out the carpet. I also developed a rash on my stomach that I thought was an allergic reaction to the under lay and I also thought that the body pain and head ache might be too. The doc said that I was wrong on both accounts. I did have the flu and I also has a dandy case of shingles. He figured that the 2 viruses were feed off each other so he put me on a mega dose of anti-viral drugs. I was also "quarantined" for 10 days. I got 2 weeks of rest and relaxation that were sorely needed. I didn't lose any wages either. I found out that I qualified for sick days.

The year has ended in great form. I have had the best month at work yet, even considering I did not work the first week. On the 23rd, I became a grandfather for the 7th time. Dian and David had a little boy: Voitek Konrad Kalani Stewart.

A year of ups and downs. Heartache and happiness and it ended with Sharon's Christmas cactus blooming most of December with a display of blossoms that was truly amazing.

Happy New Year one and all. May it be a time of growth and happiness.