Friday, September 26, 2008

My Little Red Scooter

This is my new transportation. A 2005 Honda Metropolitan. It gets about 90 mpg but only goes 40 mph on a good day. A good day is wind at the back and a hill going down. I'm also in my "school work uniform." I've been working every day at Les Boise Jr. High. It's a 26 mile round trip ride so I figure it costs me less than a $1 on this scooter. That's important because they don't pay enough to drive a real car. My shifts are only 2-3 hrs. long and at $8.50 it seems hardly worth it. But, I'm aiming for the Verizon phone discount, remember? Govt. discount to all employees. And, No... I don't ride dressed like this. I have a helmet, gloves, and jacket. I even like to wear a reflective vest when traveling further than the corner gym.
I have wished for a Vespa for years, and they still make them. The problem is they are expensive and I can't imagine that I would ever drive enough to make up for a $5,000 scooter. They have a new one that is a remake of a 1979 model, but it's still $3,000 as used. I've noticed people have scooters for sale, and they ask way more than Blue Book Value because they are sold out every where. I guess they are a HOT item when gas prices get so high. I've been waiting for a deal, and this one came along. The Honda dealership told me that I could probably drive this for 3 years and still sell for at least what I paid, if not more. Now that's a deal! Of course, it will get a little chilly in the winter and I'm more a fair weather type, so I'll probably have to put it away soon.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I Got my Call

But, I didn't get the job. Boo Hoo. I was left a polite message on my machine...
Thank you for coming in to interview.... Basically it was a really hard decision for them but they picked one after the last interview today. Good news is they want to keep my application to call again if there is another opening soon. Bad news is I need a job before then.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Interview Over, Now Wait

I drove straight from the Jr. High cafeteria to the Ada County Courthouse and waited for my interview. I was a little stressed over it. It's the first one in 19 years. I was also underdressed, since I wore my cafeteria uniform with a quick switch of shirt in the bathroom.

I was introduced to the elected official Treasurer, along with 2 other ladies. It was a little bigger of a deal than I was anticipating. They informed me that 80 people applied for this job! 5 of us are getting the privilege of interviewing. That boosted my confidence for a moment. Then they asked a load of questions. I felt like I did ok and when they were done they handed me a test! Yes, a 3 page test on basics (or not so basic) Word, Excel and english grammar. Ugh.
It might have been multiple choice, but I'm rusty. I guessed at 3 of the answers, and now that I look at the menu for Word, I see I missed one that I thought I had right. Oops. But, looking in my dictionary, I'm thinking the 2 words I guessed at I got right. Hmmm.... I wonder if I'll ever know??

They had one remaining interview for tomorrow and hoped to be able to get back to us afterwards or by Wed. Until then, I wait for news. Good news is that benefits start 30 days after working, and I can start in just 2-3 weeks.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

I Get the Interview!

I was so disappointed on Thursday morning when I saw that the job posting with the Treasurer's Office had been removed. The FAQ said that we would get an email if they were not interested in our application, and a call to schedule an interview if they were. I had gotten neither. I scootered all the way to work that morning praying that God would will it to happen.

I went off to work at the cafeteria and Dave called by 10 am that I had gotten a call from the Treasurer's Office! Whoo Hoo! I was just about bursting the rest of my morning.

Immediately after getting home I called them back and got an interview for Monday at 2. Pray hard for me. We could really use this job, and I think it would be a perfect reintroduction back into the work force. It's part time 25 hrs. per week with full govt. benefits. I know, only government would do that. The catch is that I work full time up to 16 weeks of the year during tax time. Since that is Dave's slowest time for work, it should work out fine with the boys. We need the benefits. Well, need is relative and since we've had none in 14 years, I don't know that we "need" them. But they sure would make life easier.

I had a full week substituting at the Jr. High this week, and they asked me back for next week. They have a permanent spot to fill and were hoping I would apply for the job. But, it is hard work, back breaking, and my hands are bleached dry and I feel like I'm volunteering for the money they pay. There are no benefits either. Sorry Les Bois. I'm starting to feel like I need to go back to what I was experienced in to make the best use of my time and get paid for it. This tax clerk job comes closest to what I think I can handle. We'll see if they think so on Monday.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Mom Visits

Happy Birthday Mom!

We had a fun filled, activity packed weekend. We only had 2 days, and beautiful weather to do everything we had planned. Saturday we got up "early" after a tiring week and the boys just wanted to sleep in.

We got to the Farmer's Market downtown and browsed and sampled and purchased a few choice items. I love my Huckleberry syrup and vinegrette dressing!

Then, we walked up 8th street while the guys dropped off the food items at the truck to keep cool and out of our hands.
We stopped at the STICKS art gallery where Steve made a purchase for himself, and Mom bought us this really cute mirror for Birthday/Christmas gifts for Dave and I for the rest of our lives. Thanks Mom! It fits the entry wall just perfect and it gets lots of fun comments too.

We continued up 8th street until we reached the Julia Davis Park where there was Art in the Park festivities. We ate, browsed the booths, made purchases and left he boys sitting on the grass waiting for us. I'm sure Steve stocked up on postcards, while Dave and I spent another $15 on a real nice key chain holder. Holds all the keys! and is so "Idaho" like.

Then, we needed to go back and get the truck to bring it over to the other side of the river so we wouldn't have to walk so far after our show. For Mom's birthday, we took her to the Terry Fator show at the Morrison Center. He's the one that won the America's Got Talent show last year. He had a fun show! Everyone enjoyed it, and he did a great job with his puppets and singing, and was truely funny. We didn't get home until almost 11pm. It was a full day downtown.

Sunday morning came along, and we dragged the boys out of bed again, and headed off to Idaho City. We were aiming for lunch and ice cream cones and just browse through the old mining town. Along the way we stopped at this old bridge and were amazed at how few boats were enjoying the lake on such a beautiful day. We're anxious for Patrick to get here from AZ this fall so that we can boat with him next year :)

We did make it finally to Idaho City where we immediately went to lunch at Donna's Place. We sat outside to take advantage of the perfect temperature. Then, off to the gift shops so Steve could buy more postcards. Then we wandered the streets looking at the old buildings. After about an hour of that we were ready for ice cream cones so we headed back to the diner and enjoyed yummy Blue Bunny ice cream, Dave's favorite.

We got home early enough to make some dinner at home, and then get the boys ready for school the next morning. Mom and Steve left just before 6am for the 14 hr. drive back home. The boys were off to school and I went and did my gym workout then came home and took a nap!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

My First Day of Work

Monday was Labor Day, and we simply enjoyed being home.

Tuesday morning rolls around and I just hung up the phone after the Sears repair guy told me he would be another hr. or so. Then, I got a call to sub in the lunch room. I was so relieved that I had a good excuse. They wanted me there by 9:30 and the repair man wouldn't even be here unti then. I just haven't been convinced that I want to work in the lunch room at the public school since I went to the 2nd orientation. Yes, the hours are good because they never need me when the kids have no school , but the pay isn't that great and I'm not looking forward to bleached hands. I promptly filled my day and forgot all about it.

The Sears repair man came and fixed our fridge. It was freezing up on the top half, and icing over the fridge side but keeping the temp too low. They replaced 3 parts and boy was I glad that I decided to do the extended warranty 6 months ago. At that time, they fixed the ice maker that would have cost $200. This time, the bill would have come to $442! Seems like the $60 ext. warranty was a good deal, this time.

We had the micro go out just 1 day before the warranty expired. We moved in Aug. 15. On the 14th, the micro quit displaying numbers. Only the 30 sec. button worked. The Sears repair guy came and ordered a part and came back again the next week only to find that the part ordered was white instead of stainless. However, in the process, he unplugged the micro and found out that when he plugged it back in, it rebooted, and appears all is working fine! He ordered the correct part anyway, and now if it does go back out, even though the warranty is over, we'll have the part and Dave can install it. WHew!

So, Wednesday morning comes around, and I thought I was safe from the school calls because I told them I couldn't work on Wednesdays. (I'm going to the church bible study this year and it's Wed. morning, starting next week.) Well, they were so desperate that they called me anyway. I got myself cleaned up from the gym workout I had just done, and went all the way out to East Boise to Les Bois Jr. High. Turns out it is the newest, biggest cafeteria in the Boise district. That was a relief. I was having a big problem with the space issues they warned us about. Some lunch rooms are the size of our son's bedroom but 3 people work in there and deal with all the appliances and lack of sink space. So, I cut hoggie buns, counted wheat vs. white, served Domino's pizza, cleaned lunch tables, stalked the line watching for kids without lunch cards, and washed up all the dishes when done. It wasn't so bad afterall. The people were nice, and the cafeteria was big and clean. So, now I can get that pay stub that shows I'm a "govt" employ and use that for some needed discount to get Josh a cell phone.

As much as I was pleasantly surprised with my first day, I am still not convinced that I want to work in various schools for $8.50-9.50/hr. I've been watching the job postings, looking for something that is accounting related that doesn't require full time. They are far and few between! The bookkeeping jobs are slow to find, and wouldn't amount to much at first, and would require alot of driving around. Plus, it is another self employed business subject to the pit falls of no holiday, vacation, or benefits.

I did come across this job posting with the Ada County Treasurer's office.: Tax Clerk part time with excellent full benefits! Hmmm.... the benefits of govt. work and accounting experience and benefits, with only part time! After talking to Dave about it, I applied this morning. Everything is online these days, so I have no idea how long it takes for them to route it to the right dept.
Anyway, I think this would be a perfect job for me this winter while Dave will again be struggling to keep busy. This job is 25hrs/week most of the year, and turns full time for 8 weeks when property tax bills are due. Nov-Jan and May-June. Perfect for this winter when we'll need the income, but I'm still hesitant about the summer. We'll cross that bridge when we get to it, I guess. But, I'm excited about this job because it has great potential, and sounds like something I would like.

In the mean time, we're anxiously awaiting my mom and Steve to arrive in town tomorrow. It's a short stay, only the weekend, on a stop over from Glacier National Park on their way to Northern Ca. I'm looking forward to seeing them!