Wednesday, February 18, 2015

A year later . . .

After a year away from writing on here, lots of news!

We moved our business just about one year ago to 5601 W Clearwater Ave. We have offices downstairs and our production room, along with a kitchen and two large bathrooms. Upstairs, half of the space had become a small concert venue that holds around 50 people. The other half is becoming a music/antique store with lesson cubicles. The far end of the upstairs will also house storage for Artmil, along with another kitchen area and two more large bathrooms,  plus another nice office with a large window and room for three work stations. The floors are connected by two stairwells and an elevator!

Arthur is going to high school full-time now, from 7:40 to 2:20 officially. He rides a bus down to Columbia Industries four days a week to work for them for 2 hours each day. It is a school placement for training but he gets paid $3.08 per hour. He also goes to Zumba most Tuesday afternoons from 4:30 to 5:15. He likes following the teacher who leads the class of special needs young people in a different moves for each song she plays from her iPod. I go along and learn the moves too! He is much better than me at learning dancing but I am improving.

For most of the last year, Arthur and I would visit Ms Katie at Sun River Speech Therapy on Mondays over in Richland. Arthur made great strides in his cognitive awareness and grew in independence as a result. He is also able to read at a k-first grade level. His speech never grew clearer though he uses more words so he is not any easier to understand. I had originally taken him to Ms. Katie to get his speech clearer. When I realized last month that no speech therapist I know even believes he can get better because they feel his speech patterns are unchangeable, too ingrained, I decided the time has come go a new way. We are now exploring how to craft a communication tool that will permit him to communicate more and better when his words don't do the job for the long range years ahead.

The remodel of our home made a little more progress with the master bedroom window, floor, trim and paint done. However most of our remodel time and energy has been devoted to the workplace remodel. Walls were taken out, floors repaired, painting is still going on, etc.

The business has boomed so we've had to hire two new people! Lots more websites are being built. Dennis stays busy also with BNI which has brought in lots of business too. He also has been involved with the MCTAMA bluegrass group again this year as president. He promoted the three concerts we've held upstairs in the Hidden Scene for MCTAMA.

We got to see all our children and grandchildren at Christmas time down in Phoenix and other times in the year when we traveled to Michigan and Colorado plus several came here for the summer bluegrass festival. We also got reacquainted with Dennis' large extended family in Minnesota at the Sauter reunion in August, saw Dennis' hometown of Jamestown North Dakota through his eyes, visited my cousin Roberta and her husband in in their Montana home and enjoyed my sister Mimi and her family in Arizona at Christmas time.

Our church group doubled in size, plus Dennis began leading a men's Bible study early on Tuesday morning. Both these meetings take place around the large table upstairs at work in the sunny large room. The year has seen a lot!