gothams3rdrobin: (me)
[personal profile] gothams3rdrobin
Mixed bag of a year, but then aren't they always?

Christmas was as Christmas always is, so I'm not going to dwell on that. I did have some fun performing with my choirs though, in a few different places. And choir nights out have to be my favourite :-)

Some changes this year: we finally got to move out of our dingy basement flat, thanks to yet another flood; Rowan moved up to the high school; we both began singing lessons, and I'm sure there's other little bits and bobs that I'll remember once I hit post! ;-)

The move was a challenge, both personally and professionally; The salvage crew absolutely hated dealing with me, as I had so much stuff! lol! They don't fill the boxes to capacity when they clear houses, for safety reasons, and when you take into account my cds, dvds, books.... yeah. Lots of boxes. I still have a dozen or so to empty, but those are the random bits and bobs - a lot of it would have probably been tossed away if I'd been packing the house up myself for a normal move, but the emergency conditions meant it all just got thrown in for me to deal with when I get around to it.
I had to go back to the office while we crashed at Mam's - since I couldn't set my system up on her dining table! - and once we got settled in our new place I was no longer permitted to work in my own living room (despite having done so for a year and a half) and have since been working out of my bedroom :-( Giving very strong consideration to going back to the office permanently in the spring, as well as increasing my hours now that Rowan's that little bit more independant. Still not in a position to go back to full time, at least while I'm still working towards my degree, but getting there.

High school has been a challenge for Rowan, as he struggled with doing his homework and getting there on time. He's had multiple friday afternoon detentions, which are specifically for students with attendance issues, as well as a proper detention for still not getting his act together. I think some of the issues with his homework is confidence, and not quite grasping the point of it all - he likes to have a reason, rather than be told 'get on with it, because that's what's expected of you!', and sometimes he doesn't quite grasp what he's being taught without a different explanation. But then again, that's true for most of us, right? I try and help, but he doesn't always let me know he needs the help till it's too late. He's also walking there and back now, which is saving me heaps on bus fare! He just needs to get better at getting out of bed and ready for school early enough to get there on time - a major part of why he was almost always late last term is because he kept stopping to pre-order his lunch on the canteen's automated system, which got him to his registration room late! *sigh* He really needs to stop eating ham and mushroom pizza for lunch every day.... lol!

I don't think I'm ever going to regret finally biting the bullet and approaching a vocal coach for singing lessons. It's frustrating at times, but I expected that going in. Listening back to the audio file of the lesson is hard, because of all the stammering I do unconciously, but I'm happier month on month with how the songs sound. I'm waiting back to hear about an appointment with the speech therapist; I frightened myself with just how down I was getting about it, and even my GP was a bit concerned about my mental health as I blubbered my way through my request. I don't think my vocal coach thinks I need to go back into therapy - particularly since I hated it so much the first time around - and is musing over things we can do in her sessions, but perhaps time and a different perspective will make me less resistant.
Rowan seems to enjoy his lessons too; he had all the issues that were spotted in my voice, but I lack the training to deal with them in him without giving him a complex! lol! He doesn't always concentrate well, but she's brilliant with him. I make a point of keeping almost completely silent during his lessons - partially because it's being recorded for home study, and partially because I can be a major 'helicopter-mother' which stresses him out and makes him act up even more. So I stay quiet, smile encouragingly and try to keep the 'pay attention!!' glares to a minimum. I also love how it's always Rowan who decides when his next lesson is going to be, since I make a point to never force him into anything like this. I don't expect him to do anything with these lessons, ultimately, but he loves to sing just as much as I do, and if I can help make it more enjoyable then I will.

The resumbission of my final assignment for the OU music course is due next week. I don't honestly know how that'll pan out, but ultimately it'll be okay. I simply may have to do another level two course somewhere down the line, but for now I'm getting excited for my level three course in English grammar, starting in February. It's been cemented in my mind that I don't learn practical things well in a distance-learning environment, but never once did I dislike the music course - I'm even contemplating signing up for the evening classes in music theory at Cardiff Uni's Lifelong Learning Centre! Big difference from how I'm usually pulling my hair out in frustration halfway through my OU courses, huh? :-)

Fun things about 2013: getting to see Pentatonix live in Birmingham was such a blast! I really hope I can see them again on their 2014 tour. Also seeing 'Singing In The Rain' was fun - I didn't get a programmme this time, so I had no idea that Lina Lamont was Faye from Steps!? It takes a hell of a lot of talent to sing that badly, so kudos to her. We couldn't help laughing at the poor souls who sat at the front, cheerfully enduring multiple soakings! Looking forward to seeing 'Wicked' in April, as a birthday present to myself! :-)

So, 2014.... I'm not sure what the year will bring. I know things need to change at work, and I need to help Rowan cope with school better next term. I'd like to be less of a Debbie Downer next year, though I think some of that comes with having no-one to vent to when things frustrate me - which means you poor sods have to put up with my whinging! lol! I don't need to earn buckets of cash, but I would like to be less worried about money; I almost have my head around the bills for this place, now we've been here a while, so it's all the other odds and sods I need to get a grip on.

I want to sing more, write more, spend more time with my friends - do more of the things that make me happy. I also hope to be a better parent to Rowan, and a better friend to all of you.
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December 2013

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