down day

Today we’ve got a bit of a “down” day – something that doesn’t happen too very often anymore.  We were supposed to start K’s speech therapy back up early this morning but there’s some confusion with the contract from the people who awarded us the grant for therapy so the provider needs to iron that out first.  Basically, they named the woman that was giving her therapy at the beginning of the summer as being the only one that can render services but that woman is no longer there, she just worked the summer.  So, of course, the provider wants to follow the contract as they should, so it’s got to be revised.  They would like to be listed as an entity rather than a single specific therapist in case a therapist is sick or goes on vacation, etc., then K won’t have to miss therapy that week.  I know that it’s best to work with the same person on a regular basis when you can, but I agree with that, too.  Sometimes new faces can come in and get different things out of her as well.

Her teacher told me yesterday morning when I dropped her off that she’s been doing really well this week and that the day before, Wednesday, she had said quite a few words.  I wish she would say them more at home.  Trying to be patient!

She will start Cubbies in AWANA this coming week for the first time.  I held her back a year last year for a few reasons.  But I am going to be doing my best to work hard with her to say her verses using her iPad.  This will be interesting.  This will be my fourth year working in Cubbies and thinking amongst the whole group, I don’t think we’ve had a kid yet in there that was unable to participate like K.  We had one little girl one time with Downs who would have had difficulty but she only came a few times and I wasn’t in her group so I’m not sure what they did for book time.  K will not be in my group either, at least to start, so I will have to show her teachers how to use the iPad and her signs and what not and hopefully they can coax her to do the verse.  Even if she does not, the leader tells me she will progress with the rest of the class, but I really would like her to participate the best she can.  It will be good for her.  She’s not going to be able to just slide by in life.  I don’t want her using her disability as a crutch, I want to teach her to work through it, to still do everything to the best of her ability.

So anyway, down day today.  A day where I really don’t have to go anywhere… except the post office, ugh.  I’ve been selling tons (for me anyway) of books we don’t use on Amazon.  They are all homeschool or college curriculum.  Most of them were basically pushed on me a few years ago.  I didn’t really want them in the first place, I already had what I was doing.  But I took them anyway and they’ve been sitting around gathering dust.  This house is too small to have things sitting around gathering dust.  So they are moving on out in an attempt to fix up the school/office/Lego room and organize it more.  I see this is apparently a yearly process.  Some of these books I gave away at the meeting the other night, determining they weren’t worth selling.  In hindsight, some probably were but I just want them out and helping someone else who can and will use them.  I accidentally marked one as shipped yesterday that wasn’t shipped yet – hadn’t realized a new order had come in while I was out.  So I gotta make sure I get that in the mail today.  I wonder if I can print postage at home, I do have a postal scale, if I’d just use it.  Of course, I probably already missed the mail lady, quite taking our time today, we are.  After that, I will be down to three books in my “for sale” pile.  I also have a ton on paperbackswap and some have been there a while – mass market paperback just doesn’t move all that fast unless the book is brand new.  If those are still here in a couple of months, off to Goodwill they go.  Maybe they can make a little money on them, none are bad or unreadable books.

In other news, I had to order a new backdrop today.  Both good and bad – bad because I hate spending money right now lol and good because I’m looking forward to the big project I have coming up for it.  I do have several backdrops already and a few of them would have been more than appropriate, but I needed something bigger than 5’x5′ or 5’x7′ so I got me a 9’x10′.  Going to be a big and probably stressful project – bigger than any like this I’ve done before – but it will be worth it!

first day of school

For Kayleigh anyway.  Elijah won’t start until September.

First day of her second year of ECE K has been SO excited to go back to school this year, and it’s not even “real” school.  She’s still in the early childhood program and getting speech therapy and occupational therapy.  She’s basically taken all of July and half of August off though she’s also going to start back with her private speech therapy this week.

She’s also so very excited to be riding the bus home.  During summer school, on at least two occasions, she actually literally ran after the bus in the school parking lot and cried and what not that she wanted to go, too.  So this time I am dropping her off and she’s riding home.  Her first two days she’s gotten off the bus and just gabbered about it – of course, I can’t understand a word, but it’s adorable.  She waves good bye and says gaga (bye bye) which is just something else because usually she refuses to give people the pleasure of her attention.

Her second day when I dropped her off, she gave one other little girl two hugs and then took the hand of another girl to walk inside the building.  I have to get her to school when the bus is there or we have to take the long way for security reasons, so she was waiting for them to get off the bus.  She’s not usually like that with people, she’s usually got a “don’t touch me under any circumstances” attitude.  So this is good.

that time we got ready for school again

That time of year again, though the weather certainly does not reflect it.  Not today, anyway.  It was so gorgeous.  Slightly on the warm side but devoid of humidity, unlike yesterday. Yesterday was so humid.  I did a photo shoot in the evening and we all just condensated.  It was pretty miserable though the photos don’t reflect it!  I’ve shot in worse, though!  Worse by far.  But anyway, all that moved through and today was more like September than early August.

Kayleigh and I went down to her school for her open house and she’s actually really excited to go back.  She thought she was going to school tonight.  We got inside and she started to push me away, “Go, Mama.”  It’s good, though.  With her being out of school after summer school and having to stop the private therapy (unless we can get a grant, still waiting), I’ve completely laid off her.  When she’s been receptive or trying to say words on her own, I’ve certainly encouraged it, but aside from a few times I’ve just let her be and not tried to push her with any “techniques” or anything.  I think she’s appreciated it.  She seemed to have been getting quite burned out by the time summer school was over and I just decided to let her be a 4 year old as best I can.  She has started saying a few things.  Moon, though she leaves off the “n” sound.  Banana, without the “b.”  And what not.  But the weirdest one is “guck” which we have determined means “car.”  Steve thought she was maybe saying “truck” and I guess that’s possible but we don’t have a truck, we refer to our vehicles as the car and the Jeep.  So it seems unlikely, at least to me, that she would choose to apply “truck” to his car.  It’s usually, “Dada guck.”  She was excited to ride in his car to her open house tonight.

As for Elijah’s school… I honestly very seriously considered putting him in school.  He’s just so obstinate and has a melt down if he gets a problem wrong or has to do any kind of work at all.  Not that I thought he would miraculously behave but I thought maybe if it was someone other than me telling him what to do, he’d do it with less grumbling and maybe school would actually be fun for him.  But he fought me on every angle with that and I really didn’t want to put him in school anyway.  I considered a private school here but just cannot afford it.  So this year, we’re going to do something new instead.  I bought him the 5th grade suite of Switched on Schoolhouse and am getting him a laptop to run it on because I don’t want him using the “hub” laptop that I consider to be Steve’s, anyway.  Elijah’s gonna get a used one though, running XP because it is only to be used for school.  So we will see how this goes.  Hopefully this will help make school more fun and flexible for him.  He could bring it up to the living room rather than having to stay at his desk or easily take it to Grandma’s, etc.  It’s expensive, but if this takes the stress out of school for us, I’m all for it.  Plus, it’s the 2013 version so I’m sure I can sell it next year when he’s finished with it.

Me, I’ve been having a weird pain in the side of my head/neck.  I’m not sure what it is, and, of course, I’m too stubborn to just run off to the doctor.  We’ll see how it goes.

And, phrase of the week as heard earlier this evening: “Kayleigh, let’s play jousting tournament!”  This, while they were sitting on bikes in the back yard each holding a long two inch diameter stick.  Yeah, put a stop to that one real quick!  Oh, the things this boy comes up with…

Why so hard to cancel, AT&T???

This is absolutely getting ridiculous.

When I got my first cell phone in 1999, the only thing available in this area was AT&T and largely, it’s still the same.  I did try to switch my service to something else recently only to find out I could not get a signal at all and had to go right back – I almost lost my number over that, it was a mess, but not the point of this post.  Other carriers are showing I have service but not 4G.  We will see.

No, the problem here is getting rid of the danged DSL and land line.  This has just been one of the most time consuming and stress inducing things ever.  We first got DSL in December 2004 and we’d had a phone line here since we got married, June 2000.  We had bundled billing for those two items and our wireless service (5 cell phones).

It started on July 11 when I called to cancel the DSL and home phone line after getting our cable internet installed.  It was the same day, a Thursday.  I was told this was complete.  I logged in a few days later to see that they had canceled the phone line, I had also had checked for a dial tone and had gotten none, however, I was unsure if the DSL still worked or not.  Oh, did I mention that in the store a few weeks prior, I’d been told I could not cancel my home phone line and keep the DSL?  Even though many people nationwide have DSL without home phone line, I was told I couldn’t because mine was “already set up that way” and that to do so, I would be forced to go to U-Verse, for the same cost.  I was looking to save money, not stay the same.  So, anyway, in my online account, it did not show me any kind of credit for DSL being canceled.  So I got on chat and sure enough, it had not been canceled.  The guy said he canceled it.

When I got my new bill, it showed I was still being billed $43 for DSL service, when I should have owed approximately $3 for the few days I had it after the billing cycle rolled over before I canceled it.  The lady I talked to this time…  I was very close to asking for her supervisor because she just wouldn’t “get it.”  She kept insisting that it was my final bill for service.  I just kept telling her, look at the dates.  I called on July 11 to cancel it.  I should owe for July 9, 10, and 11, and that is going into August 8, dates that have not even happened yet!  Finally, she understood and started working on crediting me.  I told her I just needed a $40 credit (hey I can do math) and she came back and said that she was having problems with her system and it would only “let” her credit me $55.  Ummmmm, okay, thanks…  I did see that amount later in the online account so I thought everything was a-okay.  When I would log in, it would still show the original balance that I owed (with $43 too much) but when I would view the actual bill, I would see a credit of $55.  That brought my total owed to $189.84, the same amount the woman on the phone told me was my new amount.  I scheduled two payments through my bank, for two Fridays, each of half that amount, so I didn’t have to pay it in the same week with other bills due, too.

Fast forward to today.  The second of the payments went today so I logged in just to check on things only to see a new bill and amount owed of over $200.  My payments are nowhere in sight.  Apparently, they un-bundled my account without telling me which made my payments go to a canceled account number that had a $0 balance and they disappeared into thin air.  No one told me I was going to have to change anything about how I make payments.  No one told me they were going to have me use a different account number in the future.

So now I am on hold again with the billing department, I have been on the phone with them for over 43 minutes now.  I got on chat first…  why do I even bother?  Chat is completely useless and they always end up telling me to call in.  I chatted with the phone service people who said I had to talk to the DSL people.  I could tell right away the DSL woman was going to try and get rid of me, she was like well your account is closed…  DUH.  Thanks.  Do not send me back to the cell people, I was just there!

I can see my payments if I go to all payments.  They  have both been posted, even today’s.  But no credit has been applied to my cell phone bill despite that the payments were going to what should have covered that as well.  The latest I’ve heard is that they cannot apply those payments to my cell service…  so what, you were just going to keep my nearly $200 and not say anything?  Um, yeah.  How nice.  I am supposed to be in a conference call with her and the cell department but was placed on hold again without a word.

This is absolutely ridiculous though.  I understand different departments but this is one company and they need to work together.  One hand doesn’t know what the other one does.

As a side note, we received a letter about our home phone service about 2 weeks or so after I canceled it saying we are sorry to see you go and if this was in error, call this number.  Way to be on the ball, guys!

I keep going back and forth on my cell phone, though.  If I leave, it’s going to be in favor of one of those no-contract places where my bill will also be cheaper.  But I get nervous because what if I don’t get a signal here like the last time I tried to leave?  I don’t know of a no-contract thing that uses AT&T towers except AT&T’s and that sort of defeats the purpose.  Plus, I’d have to buy a phone.  It’s easier to just stay where I am but when I analyze it, I am spending too much on my monthly service.  My phone is out of contract, I can leave at any time, but 3 of the other 4 phones we have are still in contract.

Well turned out that the whole time I was on hold, the two agents were talking and they thought I was there…  Now I’m told the cell agent is applying the payment to my account from the dead account  but I’m hearing both loud hold gabber (don’t text and drive, pay your bill online, yada yada yada) and my DSL agent. But I can’t understand her over the hold stuff…

good day

We’ve actually had a great week or so in terms of weather, but it’s starting to warm up again to normal summer temperatures.  However, had a good day today.  Started out kinda rough with the stupid dogs waking me up at 530 am to go out even though they’d gone out at 130 before I went to bed.  I was up late working on a photo prop for my session today.  That went into the day and by the time I could finally really get up, it was about 9 and I’d been woken up no less than 5 more times by various things and fallen back asleep.  We all got dressed and headed north to pick up Steve’s check and get a few things I needed for my prop.

Had lunch together in the car – hey it works when the adults want something the kids won’t eat so they get McDonald’s.  A few more errands then back to the house to let the dogs out and finish up my prop.  Finally got it finished as much as I could until I was on-site then we all headed out to my in-laws’ place where I had to do the final final finishing and wait for my subjects to arrive.

Photo shoot went great though I ended up quite sweaty and yucky.  Cooled off with the kids in the house and the men went to pick up some pizza and appetizers from a place we hadn’t tried yet.  Yummy and we all ate too too much.  Wasn’t much longer before we finally headed home.  Kayleigh was so wore out, she and Elijah had gotten to spray our left over silly string and she ran so hard that she actually curled up on the couch and put herself to bed.  She wasn’t happy to get up and go home!

Now I have put everyone to bed and unloaded and backed up pics and whatever else so I guess I should go to bed.  I’m sure stupid dogs will have me up early again!