It’s official!

After a six month trial period, I am now a permanent employee of the State of Oregon in a job I absolutely love. I am a Pre-Employment Transition Coordinator for Clatsop, Columbia and Washington Counties and as such, I teach transition age students (typically 16 to 21) things like interview skills, what accommodations they need to be successful at their chosen job, how to write resumes, etc. My manager is positive, forward thinking and committed to supporting her team. My co-workers are compassionate, creative and empathetic. Have I mentioned that I love my job?

In other news, my agent offered me an interesting publishing opportunity so I am working on a proposal that is set in a time period I have never written in before. It feels good to write again on a more regular basis. My critique buddy and best friend, Keri Blaisdell and I are holding one another accountable and I am making real progress–even if it’s a completely new time period.  It’s funny, I started writing in the 20’s, then I went back to the Edwardian era now I am writing in the Georgian era. If I keep going back I’ll end up in the middle ages… which wouldn’t hurt my feelings!

On the home front, I have almost finished turning my office into a place I can be in for almost twenty-four hours a day. For an 8×12 room, it has a lot of functions! First,, I have grandchildren that sleepover so it has to have a bed because the other two bedrooms are occupied. My day job is exclusively in that room until things open back up and I’m allowed back into schools… and even then, half my time will be in the office as I’m on permanent remote work. Also, I write and need a space away from my family… and coffee shops are not an option. And yes, I said almost 24-hours a day because I am still sleeping with Wyatt until he is completely potty trained. Luckily, he is doing fairly well in that regard, so I am hoping to be  back in my own bed within the next month or so. I got rid of the double bed that was in there and bought a day bed with a trundle to stack the grandchildren. I also bought a longish worktable to hold my printer and all the stuff that was on my desk. Because of my job, I have to have a docking station for my laptop, another large monitor, a keyboard and a mouse all on a desk my father made for me when I was fifteen… a desk that was built for pen and paper. I’m not getting rid of it, so adjustments had to be made. The first thing my husband said when he unpacked the daybed was, “Teri? How much do you love me? Because you need to love me a lot.” It took him three hours to put it together and the trundle bed is still in pieces under the day bed!

I told him he was the best husband ever but inside I was like, dude, you’re retired now. Just put the bed together! That’s another big change in my life. My husband retired after 30 years at the same company. Now he’s home all the time. At first, I was all worried, thinking he was going to leave and move permanently to the little retirement home in North Powder that we bought last year. Now, after almost a week of being at home with him, my eighty-four-year old mother and a three month old puppy, I’m wondering when he’s going. HA!

Oh, and I finally bought a new running bra! Mine was way too old and, after a couple years (i.e. 5) of not running regularly, a bit, snug, shall we say? I’m still avoiding stores, so I had to find one online that would fit and last. I asked my friends and my daughter what they wore and finally settle on a Natori Yogi sports bra. What a relief when it came AND IT ACTUALLY FIT. I bought new running shoes last fall, so after dithering for four months, I’m finally ready to run again. You don’t want to rush these things!

Scheduling is still an issue. I get up early enough to get my writing done, but Wyatt and the cats all want to eat. And then Wyatt wants to play. Then Wyatt needs to potty. Then Wyatt wants to lay in my lap and chew on a chewie until he falls asleep. Then we do it all over again. Then I have to get ready for work. By the time work is done, I have to make dinner and and then I’m wiped out. Sometimes it works in the morning and sometimes, if I short my lunch and breaks, I can knock off early and write before dinner. But seriously, that’s a lot of sitting! I’ll figure it out because I didn’t know how much I missed it until I started writing regularly again. Creativity just helps with the anxiety and after last year, I need all the help I can get! Have a great week, people!