November 27, 2012

The changes FOUR years can bring....

For the literally ones of people who read this tripe I type up on a regular basis (or to put it in Fry and Laurie terms, "the viewing several"), I decided not to disappoint this year. Since 2009 I have been doing an annual review of what has changed in my life since the previous year. Some of the changes this year are interesting, and some of them some of you might not actually know about yet, so this should be fun and informative. In keeping with past years, I've decided to copy/paste the previous year's entry so you can go back with me all the way to 2008. (The original post in 2009 compared 2009 with 2008.)

Here we go... TIME TRAVEL!!!

2008: We lived in a falling-apart house with no heat.
2009: We live in a pretty nice apartment with gas heat.
2010: We live in the same apartment as last year. Have somehow managed to keep paying the rent. Praise God!
2011: We still live in the same apartment. I have an eye toward moving before the end of the year, though, because I'm close to being able to afford to at this rate.
2012: We have moved twice in 2012. The first time was to Gresham (in April) for a new job, the second time was to Milwaukie (in October) for the same company.

2008: I was unemployed. All year.
2009: I sometimes wish I worked less, but I am blessed to have a job surrounded by good, godly poeple who are passionate about what they do and make working with them so much fun.
2010: Same job situation except it has dawned on me that I really don't like teaching. Okay, so I knew that all along, but now I'm really starting to get the urge to move along... still like the people I work with, though!
2011: I now work FULL TIME for the first time since 2001. I adore the people I work with, but I like teaching less and less. Looking to move on (and when I do that apartment change thing will probably shortly follow).
2012: I am now a full time, salaried property manager. Which sort of explains how I have moved twice this year, no? And look up there and see how psychic I was in 2011! I knew something was coming, just didn't know what... lol. Anyway, not only do I get free rent on a 1,200 square foot apartment, but also I am salaried for more money than I've ever made before in my life. I've had years where my total yearly income was barely $8,000. This is not one of those years.

2008: I did nearly all my Christmas shopping at the Dollar Tree, because it was what I could afford.
2009: I did most of my Christmas shopping at Wal-Mart... moving on up!
2010: Primarily Wal-Mart again. No huge change in this department.
2011: Again, no change! What can I say? I like Wal-Mart.
2012: Haven't done any shopping yet. Could I shop somewhere else? Yes, probably. Will I shop somewhere else? Eh... maybe. But it's hard to beat Wal-Mart!

2008: We got food boxes from a couple of different local organizations.
2009: An organization called to offer us a food box and I told them they could probably find someone who needed it worse than we do. After I hung up I realized what I'd just been able to say and I almost cried.
2010: Nobody even offered us a food box this year.
2011: I don't even get food stamps anymore. (Well, $16 a month, but that hardly counts, now does it?)
2012: Virtually no change from 2011 here. I do technically still qualify for the minimum amount of food stamps, but I often forget to use them. The only reason I'm still signed up is because I do it at the same time as the Chamaco's medical insurance (which I'm keeping, since I don't have health insurance myself to add him to). 

2008: I carried my son upstairs to his bed when he fell asleep on the couch.
2009: I can barely pick up my son, much less carry him upstairs. This only happened in the last month or two. I realized today that soon I won't be able to pick him up at all... my baby is gone. I almost cried.
2010: I can still pick up my nine-year-old boy for brief periods of time
2011: My kid turned 10 this year. I can still pick him up, but I can't carry him much of anywhere. I realize that the only reason I can pick him up is because I routinely lift up to sixty pounds of child at work. He clocks in at about 74, last I knew.
2012: The boy will be 11 next week. And I can still pick him up, but only barely.

2008: My son was the sort of co-dependent that being the only child of a single mom will get you.
2009: I have an increasingly independent eight-year-old who more and more often wants to do things by himself. I told him that I was going to get Nancy's recipe for play-doh because the stuff we make at work is better than the store-bought stuff. I said this because I thought it would be something fun we could do together. He asked if he could do it by himself.
2010: My son cooked dinner a few weeks ago. I supervised him, but the only thing I actually did for him was turn the knobs on the stove, because he can't reach them yet. He's older but still short... lol.
2011: My kid can stay home by himself for increasingly long periods of time (I haven't yet pushed it past an hour and a half). He has a cell phone. As long as there is a microwave and a stocked freezer, he can feed himself indefinitely. This works out well for me going to Zumba classes on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
2012: All this moving and new job stuff has created the necessity for the Chamaco to stay home alone for up to eight hours a day if he's not in school. Somehow, against all odds, I have raised the sort of responsible, independent kid that can handle this just fine so long as he has a microwave and internet access.

2008: I had a couple of friends, but mostly felt very lonely and isolated.
2009: I have some very good friends, some less-close-but-still-good friends, some casual acquaintances that  always make me smile (hello CTG!), a pretty full social calendar, and sometimes wish desperately to just be home by myself for a few hours.
2010: All of the above, plus a couple of new friends... :-)
2011: Loads of new people in my life this year. Some of them are even male... lol.
2012: With the new job comes a new social circle. I must say I like working with a mixed group of men and women again... lol. The estrogen levels in my life were approaching critical.

2008: I was single.
2009: Still single... no change there. : )
2010: Despite some rumors you may have heard, still single. But I guess there were at least rumors this year. Maybe next year there will be something to them! ;-)
2011: Still single! But I did actually go on ONE date in 2011. Which is one more than in the previous eight years combined, so I guess that's progress... ha ha ha!
2012: I am... not single*. Haven't been since September-ish. (Don't ask me exactly when, because I don't know!) Here's the funny part: Internally, I have always said two things... that I wanted to date someone I didn't date in high school (because all previous boyfriends and my ex-husband I dated in high school), and that I wanted to date someone who was my best friend (obviously, this required finding a male best friend). To which, I presume, God said, "Okay then... how about your best friend from elementary school? That's not high school!" You will never convince me that God doesn't have a sense of humor (as well as a keen sense of irony), but I am still very grateful to have Andrew back in my life after 19 years of absence.

(*Edit: Seemingly some have taken this statement to mean I am now married. I assure you that is not the case. I'm just in a reasonably serious relationship, is all.)
Well, that wraps it up for this year, kids!

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