Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Ah! The freakin holidays!

For those who find themselves wondering...I'm a little too excited about my first New England holiday season. I was bummed I missed the Black Friday party in 3-8. I can remember Matt and I talking after last year's one and figuring I'd be around for this one to enjoy. Now, I'm struggling to keep the Christmas decorations at a respectable minimum, revise (and reduce) the names on the list for Christmas card recipients, and try not to go overboard with the holiday crafts I'm dreaming of. (Homemade, environmentally friendly cranberry & ice candle holders and gingerbread house) It's sad enough I'm not getting to spend my actual Christmas up here, but I'm warm- cozy-pschyched..wozyched, if you will to know I get to spend Xmas with the old familia. So, if I send my Christmas cards at the earliest possible time (or don't depending on time and stamp availability) burn more cookies than most people are making, or flash a pair of my super-fine Christmas socks, just roll your eyes and remember how excited I am about the freak holidays that are upon us!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Starting off on the right foot (cause the left is stomped flat!)

First- A very big thanks to Kirsten for following my blog. The rest of you- FOR SHAME! (all 2 of you)

Last week was decent. I got a thank you note in recognition of good work isolating candy for self-injurious behavior on one of the students.

This past weekend was fun-filled. Saturday, Matt and I went went to Abbey's 4th birthday party. Lots and lots of family there. Finally met Dennis's parents and siblings, and many many children...many! Sunday was spent doing laundry in Hubbardston while Dennis and Matt went nuts trying to change my oil. First time my oil wasn't changed at a mechanics. So far so good. And the price was more than right! I had more fun playing with the play dough set Matt and I gave her Saturday than either of the kids, I'm sure.

Today we had a new kid at school and I was thoroughly schooled in an autistic tantrum. I thought I'd seen them before- how wrong i was... This wasn't a meltdown. This kid could stop pretty easily during the flops and screams if he was motivated/distracted by the right toy. He responded to directions during his fits as if he weren't desperately trying to bite, hit, kick,stomp, scratch, rip, punch, and anything else he could do to fight. I have never heard a child scream at full force for over an hour straight per tantrum. Just when you thought he'd stop because only a demon child could manage that volume and not get hoarse, he'd start making this very creepy pant and moan (I almost preferred the screaming) and start screaming again. After an hour of just letting him tire himself out on me and trying not to get bitten for a 5th time, I took a breather in the staff bathroom and realized 5 minutes later I had been shaking since I left the room. So I feel justified to just shoving kielbasa in a crock pot and climbing into bed. Don't get me wrong. I don't mind bites and I'm not discouraged. But i was impressed, scared, and drained to an achey blob by his nonstop energy to scream like we were slowly torturing him and he thought if he screamed loudly enough, his mother would hear him 5 towns over! Beet red, wet eyes, foot a-stampin, he won the Brat of the Year award his first day at school. Oh well, quittin' time came and went and now everything is peaceful. ....Oh dear God, he's coming back tomorrow...hide me.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Narragansett Wedding

Last Saturday Matt and I went to Rhode Island for Ricky's sister's wedding. After all the stories about Ricky's colorful family I was..um..expecting the worst so I could be pleasantly surprised. I mean, when it comes to talk of Deb, all I ever hear are her complainscapades or crazy tirades in the snow while Matt and Nick drop Ricky off and keep driving. Scary. But things were a lot different than what I expected. The weather was miserable on the way up- which bummed me out since, other than living through the ordeal, my goal was to bring back some good oceany pictures for the bathroom wall. Sunday was lovely, if freezing, and we got some good shots before I fell asleep in the truck. The actual wedding was in the same room as the reception in the Narragansett Towers. The Deb was nice and after a few drinks, very welcoming and the life of the party (I'm merciful so I won't include pictures of said life of party, but um WOW) Newport was awesome but freezing so we saw it from the comfort of our car.

Uh Oh!!!! Personal Rant coming! Consider yourself warned!!!!

A trip to Rhode Island, I'm told, takes around 2 hours. OUR trip to Rhode Island took the same amount of time it took to drive back from PA a few weeks ago. We got caught behind that colossal gas spill on 95 and better part of 3 hours in the same 5 mile area. One of the reasons I waited to blog about this was the craziness of people on the road. I was so upset, disgusted, and well, freakin pissed at the shere selfishness of people that a week later I can feel myself start to go off via blog and i was really hoping to avoid that. Because of the long wait and the fact that nobody had a clue what was up ahead, people started trying to use the emergency/ break down lane to get by. Highly illegal and for a good reason. About 20 minutes later an ambulance and other emergency vehicles were pretty much parked, waiting for these (first time I've ever found the term apply-EVER) Massholes to try and finagle back into traffic. They wouldn't do so unless they were gaining ground, so I was left to wonder where the humanity was in people that could sit in their SUVs and know they were blocking help to somebody who could be lying on the asphalt dying. I was out-of-control pissed. And glared at them until they looked my way and saw. I guess I was curious as to what kind of feeling they'd show- apologetic, obnoxious, inebriated?

"Wait we're not the Dunkin' Donuts line? So that MPH sign didn't take my order..:-("

What I didn't get was how I saw a few people glance at those freaks in the emergency lane, but everybody looked away. Most people just stared in front of them. Said freaks were getting off scot free. Drove me nuts. I fumed, I seethed, I even flipped a grandma off who tried to cut back into traffic in front of Matt and didn't take no for an answer. She played chicken with Matt until Matt was forced to let the crazy somethin somethin go. Even the granddaughter was sticking her tongue out and I was fuming. Vengeful. Righteous. Honestly, I figure that if people drive with that attitude, with any luck, they won't be on the streets for long....Jail people. I mean jail.

Anyway, I waited a week to tame down some of the language and hoped by the next Sunday I'd have brand-new, peace keeping perspectives. Oh well. At least we got home safe and had a lovely week (which i will blog about next) Ahh Sunday mornings.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


It feels like I have endless good news.

Yesterday I worked with a kid I didn't have much to do with until Wednesday. For HIPPA purposes, we'll call him D. He's an enigmatic, non-verbal munchkin around 12 and he has the speed and attention span of a rabbit. Wednesday he ran away from me- out of the classroom, away from me- about 4 times. A coworker told me he is very hard to work with and she's gotten in trouble for losing control of him. YIKES! Today I went in with at least 3 ways in mind to improve my work with him and everything worked! As a result, a coworker informed my boss that I handled him very well and did an excellent job today. At the staff meeting there was a public announcement about my awesomeness. It doesn't get much better than that.

This weekend Matt and I are going to Rich's sister's wedding. I've never met Tracy, but I'm excited to go to Rhode Island. We got an excellent deal on a room in a very swanky beach resort for less than everyone else in the wedding party- by a lot. I had planned on letting Matt go crazy and take pictures of the shore for the bathroom. It looks like it's going to rain and rain hard the whole time. Still, I'm so excited. After all, our trip to Maine kicked ass and it was dark and stormy and freezing 80% of the day. Nothing like sideways rain to make you snuggle up and appreciate the atmosphere.

The only downers this weekend are that I'm missing Maddie's birthday and I don't have cumfy yet sexy shoes for Saturday. But Maddie got her presents last week, I still have a day left to shop, and there's a white merlot calling my name!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Air (And Other Nice Things)

So lately I've been feeling a little confused. Recently, I slacked off my blogging routine (yeah, I know. what routine Miss -10 -posts- in -3 -months?) because I just felt like being unemployed and doing pretty much the same thing every day was not blog worthy. See below:
1.Woke up early for no good reason other than self respect.
2. Made lists of all the stuff I was going to get to.
3. 11:30 call from Matt. Puttered around online and did a chore every hour or so. 4.Took a nap.
5. Revised list to include things I'd already done but didn't count so that it looks like I've checked off a lot.
6. Threw out list.
7. Snacked and snacked and snacked.
8. Waited eagerly for my favorite guy to come home.

Now I have some place to go and interesting, often ridiculous, bizarre, or very funny stuff to do. But since I've been getting things together (frequently cooking, having people over, maintaining a decently clean bedroom and possibly kitchen) all I seem to appreciate is how lovely it feels to be in New England. The weather seems charming even when it's not. Warm drinks never tasted so good. It's probably the same temperature in PA- or close to it, but the air in the late afternoon feels so crisp it could break. It's got this satisfying bite to it. And that smell of woodsmoke a few streets over- MMMMMMMmmmmm!!
Maybe I'm focusing on how nice it feels up here to offset the homesickness that followed me back from PA. That's only natural, but I can't help feeling guilty when I don't feel homesick, because my friends and family miss me a lot AND guilty when I do feel homesick, because I have great people around me everywhere- home, work, holden, hubbardston, and across the hall if it's just me at 3-8 and I get lonely. Then I start to worry that I'm overanalyzing everything and missing out on how much fun I'm having building my life. So yeah, I think for now I'll just go with the flow and enjoy the cool, clean air. It's nice.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Help... can't feel my toes

Right now I'm so into that hard day's work feeling. After not working for 2 months, it feels great to get back into the groove. And groove I did. Today I ran a few discrete trial programs and even took some data. We worked on matching "Match book with book, please!" and numbers "Find 2 please!" and 1:1 Correspondence "Count to 6 please!" Everything is followed by a YAY! After ever 5 1 and 1/2 minute periods with no self-biting (SIBs- self-injurious behaviors) my kiddo gets to bounce on an exercise ball for 5 minutes and spent most of those fun times being bounced by me while he pushed off my toes. After his 3rd break, my toes could take no more. After my shower I noticed, upon stretching my legs, that everything hurt a bit except my toes, which are regaining feeling and protesting today's bouncing breaks.

All in all, I find my job easy to jump into, fulfilling, and more demanding than my last stint with these special kiddos. Now that I see how much work is involved in being the head teacher, I'm not nearly as disabppointed I was offered an Assistants position first. Can't wait to start Monday, where a coworker is bringing in lunch for the whole staff. A surprise fusion of African and European. See why I can't wait?

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hello. My Name is...

This is one of the several attempts to compensate for ignoring my blog for a loooong time. As I sip my sugar free cider, I am warmed. It's not just the apple cinnamony goodness- cause that's a little too hot right now. It's the knowledge that I'm once again, gainfully employed. Honestly, I did not care for the long wait for a returned phone call, but after two months of job searching, I got desperate. I admit- I was at a loss for purpose. Cleaning up after the boys- um no. I tried. I swear I did! But I need to be out and about. I'm especially good at being about.
So, here's the job situation. When I finally caught Stephanie (and i started calling every hour and then at 3 about ever 8 minutes- soooo pathetic, i know) she offered me an Instructional Assistant position. Here's what that means:
1. I work one on one with a kidlet and swap ever hour or so when needed.
2. I have a head teacher in charge of overall everythings that need done, but works along side me.
3. I have A LOT of room for advance- and advance I shall.

So I'm very excited about working tomorrow morning. WOOHOO!
Hello. My Name is Caitlin. And I'm employed!

Catching up

It occurs to me I've been VERY remiss in keeping up with my blog. That always seems to happen in my blogging history. I just felt there wasn't much to say, but since that never stops me in person, why should it silence my blog?

Just recently, however, there have been several new things I can gladly share. Big things first, I got a call back from West Boylston about the job I interviewed for over a month ago. I was really ticked after I was called back and then never heard from them for weeks, but I guess those clearances take a long time to get in from PA. Still, I'm pretty certain returning a phone call wouldn't have killed anyone- and if so, they should've called anyway! Well, after I called and said I had another offer, but would still love to work at WB because it was so close and I liked them so much (not so much anymore) they called back. Fishy. I should try that a lot from now on. This job is as an ABA aid, not as much money or as high a position as the Evergreen Center job.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Talking Bags

On the advise of Meg, I'm trying to add some Blogthings to my blog. I decided to do a quiz about the bag I carried this whole summer (and then some) as well as my brand spankin- new Vera Bradley bag. This quiz is the most convoluted quiz ever but here ya go!
What Your Handbag Says About You
Old Bag
Free with $25 purchase at Bath & Body works
Outside-denim, Inside- stripes of orange, pink, blues, and white. Bright teal straps
You wear your handbag over your shoulder.
You tend to be relaxed throughout the day. You are naturally at peace.
Your handbag is big.
You are a high maintenance person. You feel lost outside of your normal environment.
You carry items like a toothbrush or underwear in your bag. (While I haven't carried BOTH of these items on a regular basis, I did keep bandaids, tylenol, rubberbands, snacks, stress ball, bug spray, sunscreen, makeup, afterbite, camera, and deodorant in my bag most of this summer- and panties occasionally)
Your motto is : “Be prepared.” You don't like to be surprised by anything.
Your handbag has bright colors.
You are an outgoing and expressive person. You always speak your mind, and you're very approachable.

Vera Bradley bag

Mod Floral Mini Hipster- in new condition
Found at Sak's Thrift Avenue in Keane, NH

Same crap about being relaxed cause I carry over my shoulder
Being outgoing cause my bag has bright colors. In addition,
Your bag is small.
You are a low maintenance person. You can adapt to a variety of situations.
You would let someone look through your handbag.
You are open and comfortable with who you are. You don't hide anything.
Your handbag has an interesting pattern


Full Update Abridged

A full update on my recent activities (abridged). I've been battling a cold and losing for about a week. Last week, I was interviewed by a woman who moved from York, PA a few years ago. I hope to hear from her today or tomorrow about the job. This past weekend was lovely. It was Girls' weekend up at swanzey. It was awesome. Beautiful weather, successful shopping (a new-ish, gorgeous Vera Bradley bag for like $15) and wonderful bonding time with Matt's family. After Kirsten and I came home, we met Matt at Overlook Farm. That was pretty neat, but I was feeling lousy with sinus pressure, so I went home and fell asleep and tried to stay that way. On Tuesday I was driving along Prospect St. and got a flat tire. Matt thinks I damaged the rim riding on the flat, but I think I bumped into an awful curb when I got the flat. Last night, Matt and I went to the movies and saw Ghost Town. It was very Heart & Soul meets the Office and Tea Leoni and that British guy from the british Office- FANTASTIC! This weekend, we're going to spend some time with Erik and Tracy.
Future plans? I'm glad you asked. I think I'm going to visit Meg, Maddie, Bob and Mom sans Matt late October or early November. We may be going to Rhode Island for a Halloween party. It's killing me that I have to miss Maddie's 2nd B-day, but it's not being held on her b-day like I thought. Matt and I are going to Rich's sisters' wedding on the 15th- also in Rhode Island.

So that's the abridged version of the life of caitlin. Enjoy.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

What are YOUR strengths and weaknesses?

Today I am thinking about the following 2 days. Tomorrow I interview at a school in Natick for a part-time position as an Applied Behavior Analysis Therapist. I want this job the most but FULL TIME if I'm driving more than 30 minutes. Friday comes and I will be on my way to Connecticut to interview at a brand new school as a Residential Counselor- Full time- full and healthy benefits. IN CONNECTICUT. Oh dear. I think maybe I should wait for a third offer and then...Sigh. I can't wait for the "what are your greater strengths and weaknesses" Oh.....Boy..

That's why, in honor of Matt's upcoming boys' weekend, I've netflixed a long list of girly movies and movies that nobody but me wants to see. Stuff I've been waiting to see forever. Penelope. Princess Diaries 2. Miss Pettigrew for a Day. I'll keep you updated, cause i'm sure you're dying to know. SNOOOOZE!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Very nice aka Wicked Good

Today was Beautiful. I've been tweeking resumes and letter of intents and calling people that don't know/like me til the cows come home. This would be fine, except they fail to butcher themselves and jump on to a grill with onions and mushrooms for me. Today i got a very very part time gig. Child-watch on Sunday mornings= free YMCA membership and a resume kicker that gets my foot in the door. I know it sounds pathetic after all the work I've put in, but HOT DIGGITY DAMN. I feel like celebrating.

On another subject, living in Gettysburg, I never felt like we were from "the South". I mean common- family vacations go to 'the South", the Hiddings are from "the South", SoCo and Sprite is from "the South" !! Not to mention Mama's Family! But living up here, I have NEVER felt more from the South than I have EVER. i even call it "the SOUTH" capitital freakin S. I just wanna set the record straight to all those lovely MA folks a'readin my blog.
1- My beautiful home in PA is ABOVE the Mason Dixon line.
2- Nobody I know is named Bubba.
3- If y'all pops out of my mouth, it's not my fault. I watch Reba.

Thank you and Goodnight.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Taco Night

I'm thinking that unemployed Wednesdays will be the new Taco night. If I didn't have a million things to do today (how can somebody who doesn't work be so busy?) I could make it over to Kirsten's to hang out and go to Jack's soccer practice like last Wednesday. But the kids were so psyched to see me, I don't want to wear that out. Teehee. So after I try to get a haircut, I'm coming home to make tacos/ taco salad. If all goes well, this could be the start of a beautiful series of Wednesdays. Who knows, I might even keep it up after I get a job. Taco night, here we come! Ay Caramba!

Monday, September 15, 2008

This weekend, Matt and I went to Swanzey. Despite the few hours spent kayaking and the lovely time we had chatting with the Hillhouses, I wish we'd stayed put. Friday night should have been a good indicator of how this weekend would be. Picture me behind a GASP- big, blue pick-up truck on rainy, unfamiliar roads (driving like the bus driver from Speed and if we went faster than 50 MPH, we'd explode) and Matt sitting next to me providing 2- word directions and practically gnawing at his seat belt for a cigarette. We went from snippy to happy and back several times, but it wasn't horrendous.

All everyone seems to want to hear about is the job front- so here we go:
I spoke with a lovely lady Friday about a part time position at the Y (just what I was looking for) She was supposed to email me information shortly after, but she flaked and I am dropping by in person today. Devereaux is scheduling interviews for a position I applied for this week. I want to contact Bill Beando from Wachusett, but can I really just call the busy principal and bypass HR because he's a friend of a friend of a friend? I have to heart- to- heart that one with Mrs. M. There are several other schools in this area which have received my resume or information. This week it's all about follow-up. Wish me luck. Now quit asking me about work first thing unless you want to hire me to eat ice cream and play Wii for an annual salary and benefits!! How am I doing? Oh peachy!
But seriously, if you hear of anything....

Friday, September 12, 2008

Never a Dull Day

Daytime TV can do a funny thing to the brain. At first you're completely disgusted by the notion of loafing around a semi-messy space, wasting a single second on programming designed for the lonely and bored. After a few days, something in you changes, and the regularly scheduled programs start to seem like gems you'd been missing out on. I started planning household chores around Will & Grace. I know it's time to shower just before Desperate Housewives comes on. Today, when I was restless for Terri Hatcher (who seems so normal on that show) to appear, it ocurred to me- perhaps I'm the one that's bored and lonely. This week has been spent researching, making calls, tweeking resumes, scouring the Help Wanted sections, and doing routine household chores/maintenance. I'm used to a school schedule where people come and go during the day because of classes. Hours went by without contact. Nobody from back home would tell you that having the boob tube on during the day is foreign to me. But this past summer got me into the workforce habit and lifewithout it seems, well, empty between 7-4.

When Matt comes home, I feel like a puppy. "YAY you're home! Where were you? Pay attention to me! Did you bring me anything?" It's sweet, but-UGH and EW! So today, when I finally got more than a 5 min. talk with an HR person, I felt like something was finally clicking. Puttering hasn't eased my homesickness the way that getting out and getting some purpose to my life will. So after this weekend, I predict big things. LOVE YOU ALL!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

The Beginning

And So it Begins. This is my second official day living in Massachusetts. Yesterday, I spent a frustrating day job hunting and grocery shopping. I had planned dinner, but, mercifully, Matt's parents called us over for dinner and there I met a fantastic contact, Dianna Comer. She was enthused and very helpful. Today I called some of those contacts and did more job hunting. I love it here and any nervousness or homesickness is usually balanced out with a lot of excitement. There are times-plenty of times- when I wonder at the wisdom (and possible hoochiness) of moving in with my boyfriend, but we felt a new closeness the first time we moved my boxes in and I can't imagine wanting to be someplace he's not. I also have a suspicious feeling of maturity that will hopefully come in handy. Above all, I know that this is a positive move.

My goal is to have a few interviews set up and send my resume to at least 6 employers. So that's the work front- lots of options and some wonderful contacts. I'm going to jinx myself and say that I'll have a job I want by the end of the month.

I still miss home and loved and familiar faces. I miss my mother and my friends and my job. I'm so excited.

This is going to be GREAT!!!