I didn't realize its been over 2 years since I did an update. To be honest its mostly been because there hasn't been MUCH to update with. I'm still loving my CI, and still having new experiences. I haven't been in for a re-map for the last year and a half, but plan to get that done in the new year. The only really interesting thing has been that I've discovered radio and audiobooks.
I always have my Sandisk Sansa MP3 player with me, and its chock-full of all my favorite songs, but on a whim this summer, I switched over to 88.1 FM (CBC Radio 1) which is mostly local & national news, information & entertainment. I quickly learned that I could understand almost everything, and became hooked on several daily segments (particilarly Jian Ghomeshi's "Q" program, & The Debaters) and listening in for a few hours every day became the norm while I worked or puttered around the house.
I then found a country radio station (93.7 JRFM Vancouver) and those two stations have become my favorites. I have discovered that I can actually understand new songs that I've never heard of before, if they're played regularly enough - I understand a few more words each time, and occasionally understand the entire song! Although music is one of the most wonderful experiences I've been able to re-discover with my CI, understanding what somebody is singing often as not boils down to how loud the music is, how clearly they sing, how FAST they sing, etc. Since listening to 93.7 JRFM since June, I've become a fan of Doc Walker, Lady Antebellum, Carrie Underwood, Corb Lund, Joe Nichols, Emerson Drive, Uncke Kracker, Alan Jackson, and Steve Holy. Its so amazing to consider I wouldn't know any of their songs if I hadn't started listening to the radio!
It was around this time I started thinking about trying to listen to an audiobook, since I was understanding almost everything that was being said on CBC Radio One. So I splurged and purchased my very first one - "The Time Traveler's Wife" by Audrey Niffenegger. I absolutely LOVED IT!! And YES. I could understand Every Single Word.
Since that first book I've since listened to "King Solomon's Mines" by H. Rider Haggard, "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, "Watership Down" by Richard Adams, and "A Little Princess" and "The Secret Garden" by Frances Hodgsen Burnett. I have loved them all! With the exception of "The Time Traveler's Wife," I have gotten all my other audiobooks from Librivox. I highly recommend it.
I've also updated my cell phone from my old Razr to a LG Rumor II. I love it, and the sound is even clearer than on my Razr, which surprised me! It also has a push-out full keyboard which makes texting a dream. I couldn't be happier!
So that's this update in a nutshell. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them. Suffice to say - life is good! I'm heading to British Columbia Institute of Technology in January to partake in 2 1/2 years of study & get a degree in Medical Laboratory Technology. WITHOUT the aid of any assistants/interpereters. This will definitely be a new "CI" challenge! I'll be putting more updates about my college experiences for sure.
Wishing you a Happy Holiday Season, and all the best for 2011!!!