Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Dear Christmas



Dear Christmas,
Why is it as we get older you come on quicker and are over with way too soon? What happened to that childlike wonder of feeling like the big day would never get here and the excitement that keeps you going throughout the holiday season? Where you find yourself checking the local stations to see when Charlie Brown is going to be on so that you can make sure not to miss it. Or the original Grinch and it's roast beast feast. That excitement that came along with the arrival of the Sears or JCPenney Christmas catalog and continued to build, with momentum, until the BIG DAY. I miss that feeling - of wonder and excitement. The urgency to load everyone into the van and drive around oohing and awing at all of the Christmas lights people use to decorate their houses. Going to a local tree lighting and drinking hot chocolate and humming carols. Baking sugar cookies in the shape of a gingerbread man only to turn it into a reindeer instead. Sending and receiving Christmas cards....when did people stop doing this?

The excitement in wrapping presents and adorning them with homemade bows... how many years has it been since I made a bow that did not consist of curling ribbon? Dressing up in my Christmas sweaters and enjoying the season. A season of shopping and music and entertaining and fun and laughter? Why is it as we grow older Christmas changes? We stand and marvel over the fact that Walmart, Target and Hobby Lobby bring out the decorations in time for Halloween and yet, with a blink of the eye, the holiday is finished and we are instead talking about taking down the tree and setting new year's resolutions? I wish there was a magical way to experience those feelings again.

So until next year, I will hope and wish that the feeling of excitement will return. I will prepare for the best holiday season ever - in hopes to feel that 'spirit' again and that I will remember the reason for the season and that it's also okay to enjoy the season with that childlike wonder...

Merry Christmas,
The Momster

In a Word

There's a lot of buzz around the Internet about choosing a word for the new year. Alli Edwards has a post about it HERE and there's another post HERE at Just a Minute... It makes me think, should I participate? Should I sit down and really think about one word that I want to encompass my upcoming year?

This next year - well, I will graduate with my Bachelor of Science Degree in Special Education (Grades K-12). My daughter will begin high school.But is there a way to sum up what I want the year to be in just one word? I've really got to think on this one. Why bother? Because we spend so much time looking for motivation - I will put Bible verses on the refrigerator. I have famous quotes sprinkled around the house to help me stay inspired. I tuck notes into my textbooks and my Bible. I send little encouraging notes in The Bug's lunch box when I know she needs some extra encouragement. So what if I were to decide to focus my energy in one word, what would it be?

I'm going to think on this for a few days. It can be my fodder while I work on cleaning out the house. I have twelve days until my classes start back. In that time, I am going through every nook and cranny and cleaning and vacuuming and dusting. Maybe my word should be clean. or sparkle. or organize. or prepared. That might be a better option for me.

What about you? If you had to sum it up in one word, what would it be?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

It's Snowing!

We are having a White Christmas afterall! We haven't had snow here on Christmas Day since 1882 or something like that. But as I type, the blow ups in my front yard are covered with snow. There are four deer grazing in my front yard, eating the berries from my trees. As crazy as it sounds, I was wondering where they bed down when it snows, so it's nice to see that their evening ritual is still in effect.

Merry Christmas!

Just a quick note at 1:06 am EST to wish you and yours a Merry Christmas! We spent the night at church, Outback Steakhouse and driving around looking at Christmas lights.

Time to get some sleep before the fun begins!

Regards and Best Wishes!
The Momster

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Silent Night

This should be a post about the holidays and how much fun we are having since school has gotten out. It's not been fun. Monday was fun - fantastic even. The Bug got her braces off and looks gorgeous! I made her an appointment to have her teeth cleaned for Tuesday afternoon. That did not go so well. She has to see an oral surgeon about a suspicious spot that showed up on her jaw in the panoramic x-ray. We have a friend who was able to make some calls and get her in to see one tomorrow morning. We are all nervous and dealing with it in our own way. In the midst of this, I have realized that I lost a day this week. I kept saying that today was Tuesday, until she reminded me that Glee was on last night and that today was, in fact, Wednesday. I am sure it's the shock.

We are praying that it's nothing and have given it to God. But it's so hard not to take it back and worry about my precious little baby who is worried herself right now. She hasn't told any of her friends what is going on. In fact, she's turned off her cell phone completely and has not checked her facebook except to update her picture to a braceless image of her laughing with her friends at the local Chickfila Monday afternoon.

I can do all things through Christ, who give me strength. Sometimes I wonder why some of us are tested more than others?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Wrapping Around the Christmas Tree

So I've taken some liberty with the title of today's "Song" post because tonight I have finally broken down and started wrapping the gifts that will go under our tree. Mostly gifts that will belong to The Bug. She picked out this cute pink penguin paper one day when we were at Joann's so of course I bought it and now it's her paper this year. I would put them under the tree but the cat is napping there...peacefully.

Today was the last day of school for her for 2010. Where does the time go? Last night she asked me to make the candy bar snowmen that I've made in the past. She needed eight. Found out this afternoon she gave them to her teachers at school. She is working on a special project for her friends. They are each getting a scrapbook of the pictures we have of them all over the years. Of course she's got to get busy and finish these. Tomorrow night there's a party with a white elephant gift exchange... so we've got to go out and get a gift for that tomorrow, too.

Busy weekend ahead...decking the halls. Parties. Baking. If it's the most wonderful time of the year, why do I feel so much stress?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

(S)he's Making a List...

Part of my mind tells me if I make a list, and someone sees it, I have to accomplish the things on my list. Otherwise, I'll look bad. So I am up at 1:16 in the morning, freezing my toes off waiting for the dryer to go off so that I'll know Hubs coat is dry before I go to bed. Thinking about what I need to do here at home since school gets out for Christmas break after Thursday. There is too much to do and I am so far behind. One thing that I want to remember next year - put my trees up early - that means at least start decorating before I throw all of my effort into doing the trees at my parents' house. Six trees later, one seems to lose their enthusiasm for all things to be decorated.

I did manage to dig the rest of the tree decorations out today. Not only is the living room tree decorated, but there's garland on the mantel! So seeing how I made some progress today, I have decided to make a list of tomorrow's goals in hopes that I'll achieve them.

1. Wash the dishes - this should be an easy thing to do considering the dish washer washes the dishes for me. All I have to do is load and unload.
2. Rehang the kitchen curtains. They've been folded in the laundry room for over a week now. They really need to be up. My windows look naked without them.
3. Clean up the dining room. It looks like a personal shopper had a melt down in there. Too much stuff! Too much stuff! This also means that I'll have to wrap presents. (Killing two birds with one stone as they say.)
4. Purchase a new terra cotta pot. Because my husband bumped the one I had just painted to make my toy soldier's face..and it cracked. Let's just say... I am not happy about purchasing a new pot. But I said nothing and walked away.
5. Clean out my desk
6. Vacuum upstairs. I am saddened that I even need to write this on my list...

Okay, so in my mind, my list is much longer than this one. But I think this much is manageable. Anything above it - well that's just a bonus, right?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Don't Be Late....

That's the title of the song by The Chipmunks. It was just playing on the On Demand Christmas channel that I have playing on the television right now. It's a funny choice for today, because I am behind in my Christmas preparations! Seriously behind! I am just putting the finishing touches on the living room tree this morning. I had to crawl around in the attic to find the rest of my decorations.... which was strange because they were not with the usual Christmas stuff. But mission accomplished and the tree is looking more festive with my collection of ornaments... and I discovered that I have too many ornaments. How can someone have TOO MANY ornaments? Must be left over from the tree at our first house. We had cathedral ceilings in our living room and a tree that went nearly to the top. Several years ago we decided to purchase the pre-lit tree that we still use today. It is smaller...and fits inside our house!

I am having trouble deciding what to get my parents for Christmas this year. I have thought about a few things but I am just not sure. It is driving me crazy! I am hoping if I take a few days just to think about it - and try not to shop for them - something will come to me. Any ideas and/or suggestions would be greatly appreciated before I have no hair left on my head!

Why is it the people we love the most are usually the hardest to shop for?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Mele Kalikimaka

We're having a heat wave...of sorts. Today was a warmer day with the sun shining that somehow found me outside working in the yard after I went to drop off our recyclables. I cleaned up some stuff that Hubs had left behind the garage as well as at the side yard when he cleaned out the bed of his truck last week. I unhooked the water hoses, which should have been done weeks ago. I cleaned up the leaves in the front yard. Took some stuff out to the shed. Painted the pots for my toy soldier. Hopefully I'll be able to put him together tomorrow and he'll keep guard over the front porch before the weekend is over.

Tonight we had the middle school chorus concert. The girls did a great job. The choirs are much smaller this year - which concerns me because I am a big supporter of the arts in school. We will have only two more concerts at the middle school... and then we'll have a high schooler on our hands.

Tomorrow I plan on working in the yard a little bit more before the rain gets here. If I were brave, I would get the ladder and hang some icicle lights, at least off the first floor... Or I'll just wait and see if Hubs can do it this weekend.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Angels We Have Heard On High

My daughter is awesome! I mean, really... I know parents say that all the time. But if you could have seen her tonight in the play at school... you would be calling agents NOW. But instead, she's going to build a space station and find a cure for cancer and space station disease. Hollywood's loss is the rest of the world's gain.

All joking aside... it was an incredible night. First, the club's sponsor, who wrote the script, did an amazing job. The Bug did an awesome job of delivering her 197 lines. She improvised when others in the scenes could not remember their lines. She showed emotion. She was funny. And a little scary... I don't think people will ever MESS with her after seeing how she threw two parents, a couple of social workers, some students and an ungrateful art teacher out of HER school.

To be honest, I was worried going into tonight. That's a lot of lines to learn in a short amount of time. She was in every scene and had something to say. When I had gone over the script with her once or twice, she just basically 'recalled' her part. No emotion. But tonight...this little girl.... she was incredible! My sister made the comment that she seemed SO GROWN UP. Parents were coming up to her after the show telling her what a great job she did. We were just proud of her. Whenever she puts her mind to doing something, she gives it all she's got.

The next production is a musical. Before tonight I thought she might not be interested in having a part. Now I'm not so sure. She's already sang in front of large audiences with solos at school and at church.

Doodlebug, if you read this...you make me SO PROUD! Go Wildcat, go!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

You're A Mean One...

Principal Scrooge is tonight. If you were to ask The Bug if she is nervous...her answer would be yes. Not because she's afraid she won't remember the 197 lines that she has in the play. She's nervous what people will think as in her peers. So she told me this morning she'll be glad when this is over with even though she loves the sleep pajama pants she gets to wear through most of the play! We will buy our tickets at the door and I have two dozen gorgeous roses for the star of the show...even though she doesn't like it when I point that part out.... Go Doodlebug, go! Now I just need to find my camera to preserve the moment.

So the play is tonight. She gets fitted for her retainer tomorrow. Has to recite a poem in her English class as well. Chorus concert is Thursday. Then, perhaps if I'm lucky, our family life can return to something that resembles normality by the weekend. The cat and I miss her being home most evenings. I see a night of Christmas cookies, movies and hot chocolate in our very near future!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Steve


Today we deviate from the Christmas carols titles to remember someone who was (and still is) so important to my life. Today would have been my brother Steve's 48th birthday. To me, he's always this little boy. Well, not little, but still that 13 year old boy who loved to follow Momma around the house and always went fishing and hunting with Daddy. I wonder so many times how different our lives would be if he were here with us now? I love you Bubba...

Sunday, December 5, 2010

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen

Last night my daughter went to a spend the night party for one of her friend's 14th birthdays. The girls had fun...and only got 2 hours of sleep! Yeah... so that being said, guess who was in bed asleep at 8 o'clock tonight? She has a busy week ahead. Play dress rehearsal, the play, a chorus concert, a fitting for her retainer, poetry recital and an assembly where the choir will also be singing. All this week. Not to mention homework and studying for finals. I don't know how she does it! I have the greatest admiration for her determination to be the best that she can possibly be! Keep up the good work...but take a break, too!

I discovered today two things: 1....she has grown and most of her slacks no longer fit. So we had to buy a new pair for a scene in the play. 2. I have a final that is due Tuesday. I thought it was due Friday...nope! Guess who will be studying all day tomorrow?

Still haven't finished the tree. Or wrapped the first gift. Maybe tomorrow....

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Put One Foot in Front of the Other...

Today's title is paying homage to that song from Santa Claus is Coming to Town. I love that cartoon! Absolutely one of my favorites.

Tonight I will be home by myself for a while. Hubs is out and The Bug is going to a birthday party. What will I do? Well hopefully the title will give me some inspiration and I'll finally put up the Christmas tree! I had hoped to get it up this morning, but got side tracked with some errands we had to run. Then the weather isn't exactly cooperating either. I know this will sound crazy, but I want to take the tree piece by piece and blow it with the blower. Why? Because a few weeks ago I discovered a black widow spider in the garage. I killed it. Then I discovered that they like to hide out in closed storage containers. This includes Christmas tree boxes. I stored our tree this past year on the shelf in the garage. I will not do that again! I now have a bad case of spiderfobia. Simple explanation for a crazy situation I know...

I also hope to get some wrapping done tonight. I have presents hidden in way too many places and I need to get everything corralled together and under the tree. I'm thinking it's the perfect night to pull out the Christmas DVDs and watch White Christmas and a few of my other favorites while I get the house in shape for the holidays. I think my problem has been all of the trees I decorated at my parents a few weeks ago did me in. Next year I'll remember to at least put up our tree in the living room/family room first.

Hopefully tomorrow I'll have pictures to share. That should help to motivate me to decorate!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Twelve Gifts of Christmas

Ever heard that song? FUNNY! So it's the topic song for tonight. Google it if you have time.

So today I met with my advisor. I am on course to graduate a year from now. When I told Hubs he said it's always a year from now...which is true. But this time next year, I will be graduating with my Bachelor Degree of Science in Special Education. I will actually be qualified, by state standards, to educate students, heaven help us!

But after that, I stopped at a Bealls Outlet. Because of Fridays if you are under 49, you get 15% off. Know what I found? A case for my daughter's iPod that smells like jelly beans. A cute little bank for her room in pink, black and white. And... a thigh master! Remember those from the 80s when Suzanne Somers would sell them? Yes... I bought one! It is hidden in my van right now... I'm not sure I want the Hubs and the Bug to see it just yet.

After The Bug's drama rehearsal she and I headed out to dinner and some shopping. We found some great deals at Aeropostale, Belk and Kohls. I think that I can say I am finished shopping for everyone but my parents. I have NO CLUE what to get them this year!!! Why is it that our parents are the hardest people to buy for? At least I hope I don't have to go back to the mall anytime soon!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas

My husband has been asking me for a Christmas List. My Mother asked me if I wanted a surprise this year...or if I wanted the money to buy my own gift. My daughter keeps asking me what I want for Christmas and if there are any hints she needs to give to Daddy about what I want. Problem is: I have no idea what I want this year for Christmas.

What I want... and what I need... are two separate things. I would love something frivolous like a Cricut but that is not practical. I'm all about the practical. I do not want clothes. I am trying to lose weight. While I have bought myself a few things recently, that does not mean that I want more to add to my wardrobe. I like boots. That's the one item I keep waffling on whether or not I want a new pair of boots. I would sort of like an iPad, but again, that's being frivolous. What I want is my family to happy and healthy and content. Easily said and hopefully easily delivered. I love Reece's cups...not a practical gift, but always fun to find in my stocking on Christmas morning!

I went to the mall today. The Bug needed some more Proactiv so away I went. While I was there, I decided to get my fill of mall shopping. I ate a snickers bar and had a coke zero from the Dollar Tree for lunch. How nutritious is that? I've like I'm on the Elf Diet! I did pick up a few things but not nearly what I had envisioned on the way home.

Speaking of diets... you need to check out theses Cupcakes in a Jarover at Today's Creative Blog. What a neat idea! A few years ago The Bug gave her teacher's Cake in a Coffee Mug. They were awesome and tasted great. We made up the cake mix and the icing mix and packaged them for the teachers with the directions. Much better than that microwave brownie that seems to be so popular by Betty Crocker!

Anyway, I think I should get back to work on my Christmas list.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!

No, we don't have snow here in the great south...but a girl can hope. Actually today's title fits 2 purposes... 1. It is a Christmas song and 2. My Dad said the weather guy said we could have SNOW for Christmas this year. This contradicts the report that I have heard that it will be a tropical 73 instead. I like Daddy's forecast much better than my own...so I am going with it!

Today was to be the day of accomplishments. I started out doing well. I had errands to run. Then Momma called and I found myself sidetracked at their house. I love spending time with the parents though so it was not a bad thing. The bad part is that I failed to get back out and accomplish everything that I needed to do. Now Hubs is on his way to the house. I have to pick The Bug up from drama club in 2 hours. Not much time to do all of the things I had hoped to accomplish. But as Scarlett says, "Tomorrow is another day" and surely as the sun rises, I will live to shop again! Okay, poetic license, but you get the drift?


The funny thing about raising a teenager is when you reach that point where they really don't know what they want for Christmas. Like the idea of making a list is unbearable. Clothes...that's usually a given. Electronics...another popular choice. It's just filling in all the gaps to come up with something that will wow their socks off come Christmas morning. That's the stage I am at in my shopping. When I was her age I think I got my first personal stereo. You know, one with a record player and BIG speakers and a CD deck and it would play the radio. I loved that thing and would sit and listen to my albums over and over again. We had a funny conversation the other night about albums because kids today really have no idea what they are unless they've seen them in their parents' stash of keepsakes. I was explaining how you'd buy an album or if you only wanted the song, you could get a 45 of the new release. I was explaining how records had an A side (the hit) and a B side (usually NOT the hit). This concept seemed foreign...like I was speaking French in a Japanese movie.

What about you? What was the big 'gotta have' when you were 13?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Today's Holiday Challenge

Today's challenge (to myself) has nothing to do with the holidays in reality... Instead it has to do with cleaning out the kitchen. I started this mission on Saturday (did I already tell you this???) and today I am cleaning out the other side of the kitchen, aka the breakfast nook and my pantry. So far I have several things to drop off at the donation center. I am thinking about throwing my never been used toaster oven in for good measure, too. It takes up too much space!

So this morning, The Bug had to go back to school (much against her will!) and I came home to start tackling the shelves in my pantry. I have thrown away and thrown stuff into the recycling bin like you would not believe! I started in the pantry and then somehow ended back up in the frig. Anyway, just a holiday reminder...check the expiration dates on your bottles of salad dressing, boxes of cake mix, and those little pudding mix packages, too. I will not tell you the oldest item found...in case you ever decide to eat at my house...really...it was June of 2010... don't call child services on me!

I am about to load up the Momstermobile to go and drop off the kitchen stuff to the donation center. Then I'll probably come back home and load up the van for the recycling center as well. One thing that I know for sure...there will be no 'kitchen items' on my wish list this year!

Maybe I'll eventually get around to putting up the tree!

My New Favorite....

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cleaning the Cupboard

Late this afternoon I decided to venture into the kitchen to clean out the cabinets (aka cupboards). Imagine my surprise when I realized we had a folding griddle... because we had FORGOTTEN all about having it. How convenient that would have been on those mornings after spend the night parties...

In cleaning out the recesses of the cabinets, I realized I have A LOT of baking stuff. I counted four different kinds of bundt pans. Not to mention the miniature bundt pans. And a lot of those little 'one bite' baking pans. Wilton cake pans - I wonder if I thought at one time I'd bake a wedding cake I have so many of them! But never fear, we don't only eat sweets here. I rediscovered my bread maker. My steamer. Electric knife. Food processor. Hand held chopper. All of those things that I had forgotten that I had because they were 'way back' in the cabinets where I never bother to look.

This prompted more cleaning. I moved my coffee cups. I took out all of the water bottles, except for two to keep. I went through my utensils drawer. Decided to get rid of my rotisserie that has never really worked for me. I'm still 'thinking' about keeping my blender. When is the last time I used it? Or my mini chopper? Maybe I should do something so that if I don't use them in the next month, they're going to a better home? I've gotten rid of salad 'tossers'. Wooden spoons. Extra coffee mugs. Those little measuring cups that come with liquid medicines. All sorts of stuff is on its way out of our house and either to the recycling center or a better home in one way or another. Next is the cabinet where my casserole dishes live. I do use them regularly - even though I live in a house with people who do NOT like casseroles.

Tomorrow maybe I'll get to the other side of the kitchen and take care of the pantry. I need to wash the windows, not to mention the curtain valances that I have up in the room. Don't even ask about the ceiling fan or the blinds! I have copper molds along one wall (at the ceiling) that I am sure need to come down and get some TLC as well. I want to turn on the self-cleaning feature of the oven and clean behind the refrigerator, too. At this rate, I'll have a lovely and CLEAN kitchen... but when am I going to put up the Christmas tree?

Friday, November 26, 2010

Black Friday....

We went to Walmart at midnight. I know...crazy! And the insane part is went to two...2....TWO Walmarts. Stood in line for about an hour...talked to some crazy funny people...and had a good time. Then we came home and Hubs had to get some shut eye for work...while I headed back out to Target, Belk, and a few other places. It was fun. I am tired. Driving home was not so much fun... and I came in, took some cold medicine and fell asleep for about 3 hours until the phone woke me up.

As much "fun" as it was, I think next year I'm going to sleep in, shop online and spend the day decorating my house. With all of the tree decorating I did at my parents, I still do not have a tree up here at home. Maybe Monday when everyone goes back to school and work...

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

With Visions of Sugar Plums...

The Bug's clay ornaments turned out to be GORGEOUS! So much that I have asked her to make me a charm bracelet with the gum drops that she designed in all sorts of colors and I hope she'll get busy on it in the next few days! I promise to upload some pictures, especially of her cocoa mug necklace that she made!

We have managed to get everything decorated at my parents house except for the front porch. Garland and icicle lights and we should finally be finished. I had hoped to have my decorations out by now but no such luck. That's okay... I have been enjoying my time off with The Bug. Today we went in search of the perfect bracelets and jump rings for her projects and five large clay pots for the nutcracker soldier that I am planning on creating for the front porch. I hope to get started on that one tomorrow or Wednesday at the latest.

On Wednesday I am taking her and a friend to see the new movie "Tangled". It should be fun. We are going to see it in 3-D so I am excited about that part. The girls seem to be glad that they're going to get together and do something. We originally planned on having her spend the night but then I realized that Hubs would be home ... ah! a night off!... so we changed their plans slightly so that we could have some family time together.

I cannot believe that Thanksgiving is this Thursday?!?! Where does the time go?

Monday, November 22, 2010

It's Just Like Candy...With No Calories!

Tonight The Bug and I sat at the kitchen table and she created candy out of clay. I have a collection of clay from years ago when we went to Michael's every Saturday morning for their craft club. And a clay 'pasta' machine. So this year I really want to go all out with my gingerbread themed kitchen for Christmas. So I asked Miss Artsy to create me some 'candy' for a tree. She's made me kisses and hugs, gum drops, a candied apple, twizzlers, candy canes, and a few other things. I, on the other hand, have no success with the clay so I decided to cut out the ice skates that go on her tree while she worked. She also created a few 'pieces' for herself...including a cocoa mug and marshmallow charms that she saw in a book.

It's so nice to sit with her and chat while we create. She's so artistic - I wish I had 1/10th of her ability... she can just visualize things and get them done. She told me tonight that she would secretly love to grow up and go work at Carlos Bakery in Jersey with Buddy... she loves that show and would love to be one of the decorators who creates all of the interesting things that he puts on his cakes. She could do it, too! I hope her love for creating never ends...

So her masterpieces are baking in the oven as I type. She is upstairs in bed, as is Hubs. I am sitting here, watching the timer so that she can see the fruits of her labor in the morning. Hopefully I'll be able to convince her to make me a few more things. And I'd really like a sugar plum or gum drop charm bracelet...if she has time.

What about you? When's the last time you sat down and created something from the heart? Hopefully pictures to follow...

Saturday, November 20, 2010

It's a Jungle Out There!

I am taking a class on collaboration. One of our assignments was to complete this test and to see where we rank. I thought I'd post it in case anybody's interested...if you do take it, post a message and let me know what your results are and I'll share "page 2".

Until then... I'm still decorating!

PERSONALITY CHECKLIST

Read the following personality descriptions. Pick the ones you are most like. Circle each description that is a consistent character of you. Then total the circled answers for each personality. The larger numbers indicate basic personality traits.

Lion
1. Is daring and unafraid in new situations
2. Likes to be a leader. Often tells others how to do things.
3. Ready to take on any kind of challenge.
4. Is firm and serious about what is expected.
5. Makes decisions quickly.

Golden Retriever
1. Always loyal and faithful to friends.
2. Listens carefully to others.
3. Likes to help others. Feels sad when others are hurt.
4. Is a peacemaker. Doesn't like it when others argue.
5. Patient and willing to wait for something.

Otter
1. Talks a lot and tells wild stories.
2. Likes to do all kinds of fun things.
3. Enjoys being in groups. Likes to perform.
4. Full of energy and always eager to play.
" Always happy and sees the good part of everything.

Beaver
1. Is neat and tidy and notices little details.
2. Sticks with something until it's done. Doesn't like to quit in the middle of a game.
3. Asks lots of questions.
4. Likes things done the same way.
5. Tells things just the way they are.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Santa's Diet Clause

Do you ever wonder if there are Weight Watchers at the North Pole? You know, those people who monitor Santa's weight...? (Drum roll please...) I thought that was a funny way to start today's post.

The tree fluffing is coming along well at my parents' house. All of the bedroom trees are up, fluffed and decorated. Hopefully by the time this posts, I will have the tree in the dining room lit and ready for the collection of ornaments that go in there and the tree up in the foyer. Then it's garland all around and wreaths on the door.

As I have worked in each room, I have cleaned for Momma since she's having some issues with her heart. It has been fun. But I am exhausted! I came home to cook dinner for Hubs before he heads off to work and then I have to pick The Bug up from drama club rehearsal and we are going to get dinner and head back to my parents' house to eat. And then I'll be fluffing trees and humming Christmas carols. Until I get back home and realize that the magical kitchen elves did NOT show up for duty again tonight. But never fear...tomorrow is another day.

Speaking of, I think tomorrow we're going to do some crafting. We don't get to spend too much time doing all of that lately and I miss it! It used to be that every Saturday morning we went to Michael's to get our craft on. Not so much any more. So tomorrow I am dragging out the gingerbread house kit, the felt for making skates and mittens and the clay along with the pasta machine (for the clay only....).

On another note... I hate taking back returns. I did that (FINALLY) at Kohl's today. It is sad when you realize the money that you 'loaned' the store because you didn't like something when you got it home but didn't want to return it. But that's a story for another day....

Toodles!

Fluffing the Trees

Today I have a date. With decorating. I am going to my parents' house to fluff their trees. It used to be that I was summoned home to put the lights on the trees too, but thanks to my convincing Momma to buy prelit trees a few years ago, I go home to fluff and decorate instead. Tomorrow I am doing the four trees that she has upstairs. Should be a fun day. Oh wait... I think there are five.

I actually look forward to this every year. My parents have a beautiful tree in the foyer of their home that all of the guests see when they enter the house. The tree we used was HUGE but last year the lights gave me fits so we decided to buy another tree. It's skinnier... but just as tall. She also has a white tree in the formal dining room where she displays her glass ornaments and one in the breakfast nook of the kitchen that is covered in fruit and flowers.

Once the trees are decorated, we'll put the garland on the stair cases and hang the wreaths and place the garland on the front porch rails. I'll have to see when Hubs can go and hang their icicle lights. He's super busy... hope he can get it done! My parents like to entertain at Christmas so I am sure Momma is planning their party.

What about you? Do you go and help anybody do their decorating each year?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Purge...then the splurge!

Do you do that? Clean everything out in anticipation of the holidays? My Mom, aka Momma, cleans EVERYTHING...right down to the drawers in her house when the holidays are coming and she's expecting company.

Today I am focusing on cleaning out the guest room. I love(d) my guest room. In that room I have my grandmother's twin iron bed, which was always my favorite bed to sleep in when I was little and would go visit. I also have the rocking chair that I used when The Bug was a baby in that room. And my exercise machine...but let's not go there...because I haven't used it for two weeks (sssshhh!)

What I don't like about my guest room - it becomes the hiding place of everything we don't want to deal with around the house. Well that, and the curtains, but that's another story for another day. So today I started out cleaning off the bed and under the bed and now, just like my Momma, I am moving on to the drawers. I've found a ton of things to drop off for the charity we usually donate clothes to each year. I found The Bug's school pictures from last year. Sandals. Clothes that still have the price tags on them...those are going back!

What's the worst thing that's happened in that room? Well, I found a bottle of Murphy's Oil Mop n' Go or something like that. I thought I'd sit it on the little 'shelf' at the top of my stairs...Instead it slid on the banister like Ralphie after his visit with Santa and hit the wall. So I had to take a break to find enough old towels to try to dry up the mess that I had made. I'm hoping it doesn't stain the wall...otherwise I'll be painting before Hubs figures out what I've done.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It's Better Than Black Friday....

I have been Christmas shopping the past few days. I need something to distract my mind since my student teaching has ended and I am procrastinating on finishing up my IEP writing for my fictional student "Tommy". I've found some incredible deals out there the past few days and I'd gladly mention them, except that a certain teenager reads my blog sometimes. She likes surprises. Which means she gets a wee bit upset if she figures out the surprise before the big day.

I did buy something for myself. A roasting pan at Macys! Isn't that exciting? I've spent a good part of the afternoon thinking about getting a GPS... probably a Garmin... but am not sure. It is not for myself although I do plan on getting to use it quite a bit. HE doesn't read my blog so I think that is safe to say. So if you have any opinions, please share.

The Bug has informed me that she wants to go shopping the day after Thanksgiving. This is the first time that I can recall that she actually wants to go...without being bribed....!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Christmas Lights and Candy Canes

I asked my husband this morning when he thought he'd have time to put the icicle lights up on the house. Because he never found the time to do this last year and the house looked so sad to me. Because in all of the years we've been married, we've always put up lights. He said maybe this weekend. Which is fine...but let's not turn them on just yet.

Then he mentioned that maybe we could get the Christmas tree out. Now what do you think about that? Putting the tree up NOW rather than the week of Thanksgiving vacation? I don't know why...but that just seems WRONG to me. So I told him no... we'd do that when The Bug and I are both at home for the break. That we had too much other stuff to do.

Which started him on this conversation about building this huge Christmas tree out of lights that we've seen in someone's yard before. It is beautiful ... but to be honest, he's not home enough lately to be able to accomplish something like that. And it means I'd have to buy a zillion lights. But if he's determined to do it, I am sure he'll find the time.

I am going to get out the clay and the pasta machine and ask The Bug to make me some 'candy' ornaments for a small tree I want to put up in my kitchen this year. I've always loved those ornaments at Cracker Barrel and I believe she could do them with no problem. I will post pictures if we get around to it.

I want to make this Christmas special here at home. Mostly because I have no idea what to get The Bug this year ... and because it's the last Christmas that I won't be 'working' or 'student teaching' and I want to enjoy every minute and make lots of memories.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Christmas Is Coming...Christmas Is Coming!

Can you believe it? Don't you just feel like you just put away the decorations and the wreaths and the outdoor lights? Well let's hope nobody's still got their outdoor lights up... !

The stores are all bustling with Christmas merchandise. Christmas movies are stocked on the shelves. Christmas CDs have been coming out for about a month. Wrapping paper on aisle 12. I bought a three pack of Scotch tape yesterday...just for the fun of it!The "Sounds of the Season" channel on our cable system is playing the tunes that I adore and today.... the local radio station....played WHITE CHRISTMAS. I demanded NO TALKING while I sang along with Bing and Danny and Rosemary and the other voice that was not the woman from the movie. I bought Elf last weekend... even though we are still eating Halloween candy... and yes, I just took the big glowing pumpkin off the front porch yesterday... Christmas is going to be here before you know it!

Can you tell that I'm excited? Like a kid in the candy store....

Saturday, November 6, 2010

What's Going On?

Wow - busy week here. I have decided, after my last post, to get down to business and knock the rest of my classes out. So far I only have a few assignments and 2 finals to take...and I will be DONE! yeah ME!

With all of the school work going on, I also have some GOOD news! The Bug passed her 1st round of All-State Auditions. In fact, she received the highest score at her school. We are VERY proud of her! But then again,this girl can S*I*N*G!

She is also in the drama club this year. And just got the starring role in the Christmas play that they're putting on next month. Principal Scrooge. The drama club sponsor really encouraged her to audition for this role and while I think maybe she's nervous about memorizing all of her lines since she's the only person in each and every scene, she's also very excited!

She's testing for her purple belt in Goju so hopefully we'll still have time to go to classes with all of the dramatic rehearsals going on around here. I think it would look good on her college applications to have her black belt and her Senai is encouraging her to stay with it. He's offered to advance her into the adult class (remember she's only 13!) but she's not sure. It's later and lasts longer. So I told her to think about it and just let us know. I am fine with her staying where she's at...she'd just learn more in the next class.

And the big big big news? December 20...no more braces! I think that I was more excited about this tidbit of information than she was... I'm so excited to see her teeth when the braces come off! I told her we'd have to do something BIG to celebrate...like have ice cream! LOL She hasn't had ice cream in forever!

That's it for us.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Feel the Burn....Out

Something is going on around here. We've had dreary, wet weather for the past few days. It's also been warmer than normal. Water plus warmth equals misery. Especially after Mother Nature tempted us to think that fall was just around the corner a few weeks ago when the temperatures where turning colder. Ha...the joke was on us!

Bowling has finally ended. I am happy to report I scored a 144 on one of my final games! It seems strange to have my Tuesdays and Thursdays to myself again. Needless to say, I passed the class. In a way I miss my little crew of bowlers. There were only 7 of us enrolled in the class with our instructor. On the positive side, I am finally regaining the ability to bend my ring finger and can actually grasp things with my left hand again.

My other classes are coming together. A few weeks left this semester - I think our classes actually end the first week of December. I will be so grateful when it ends. The past two semesters I have pushed myself too hard and taken too many classes. I have really started to feel the effects of all of the studying and work this past week. I'm also worried that I will start to experience burn out when it comes to teaching...and this has me concerned since I've gone to school for so long to teach and now I feel this way. Next semester I'm taking three classes so far - and one of those is my field experience so I'll be placed at another school for 15 hours a week for something like 16 weeks. Then in the fall I will student teach at a local school for at least 12 weeks. I'll take and hopefully pass the GACE and then I'll be eligible for my certification to teach Special Education in grades K-12. Then I'll go from being "Slacker Mom" to "Mrs. R"- that's what my students call me. My last name is NOT fun to pronounce and seldom if ever do they get it right.

I cannot believe that this weekend is Halloween! Where has the time gone? For the first time that I can remember I bought The Bug's Halloween costume rather than making it myself. She's going as a goddess... She wants to be Artemis, goddess of moonlight and hunting. Which reminds me... I still need to run out and pick up her accessories! Our church is having its annual Harvest celebration for the community. You would not believe all of the activities and food they'll have available for our neighbors and it's all free. What an awesome outreach program! The Bug and one of her friend's will be doing face painting for an hour and then working for an hour in the booth that our class is responsible for supervising that night. Then they'll have just enough time to enough all of the treats and games before it's time to leave.

The house has not been decorated. There is still a part of a tree blocking the sidewalk to the front door. Because Hubs is always at work. I think I'm going to ask him to park the landscape trailer in the front of the house tomorrow so that I can at least get all of the branches up. Maybe I'll find the Great Pumpkin that lights up and put him in the front yard at least. There will be no haunted cemetery to spook the kids. Maybe next year. I hope anyway....

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Clinton Kelly

I know, I know. I don't talk about celebrities here.... But what's your take on Clinton Kelly? You know, the guy from "What Not To Wear"? I think he's hilarious! So while I was over on the Macys.com website, I looked at a few of the "Clinton Kelly" videos where, ordinary women (including one who has lost 92 pounds) ask him fashion questions and he helps with their make overs. It's worth a looksee if you have time.

I have bowling tonight...wonder what he'd think of the bowling league shirts so many wear? My scores are pretty good considering I probably have a fracture to my ring finger. I've been borrowing my sister's bowling ball since they lived in Germany but Tuesday night I bowled half of the time with her 10 pound ball and then I went back to my 12 pound bowling alley ball. It's got that "ump" that I need to get those strikes and increase my scores. Speaking of... last Thursday I got a 104, 108 and 124. Tuesday, with my hand taped up because of my finger (again!) I got a 98 and a 116. Not bad considering I have to be able to bowl at least a 90 to pass the course.

After I leave the bowling alley I'm heading to the middle school for The Bug's chorus concert. She has a solo in Halo . Made famous by Beyonce...and even more popular thanks to Glee. I can't wait to hear her sing... she's got such a fantastic voice. She'll sing the first verse of the song by herself. Hopefully I'll be able to get a good video of her singing...and since her group doesn't sing until the end of the concert I should make it in enough time.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Where Does the Time Go?

Tomorrow is the last day of September. Where does the time go? A part of me feels like we were just celebrating the fourth of July. Now the stores are busy pulling out all of their Christmas, Thanksgiving and Halloween merchandise. I drove by a house today that has already decorated their front porch for Halloween. We're still running around in shorts and t-shirts and Hobby Lobby is probably playing Christmas music as I type.

I love this time of year though. Although I am sad to see all of the flowers die back and the grass begins to turn an unattractive shade of brownish-green, I still love fall. I like seeing the pumpkins in the grocery stores and the bales of hay along the roads. I enjoy walking up and down the costume aisle at the store and seeing what neat and different costumes and decorations are available this year. I find myself trying to avoid the candy aisle...those Reece's call me by name! My mind turns to thoughts of soups and stews for dinner and decorating the front lawn for Halloween and Christmas. Finally being able to turn off the air conditioner!

For Halloween this year, The Bug wants to be Artemis - Goddess of the moon and nature or something like that. She carries a small bow and arrow. And wears a really cute dress. So a few weeks ago Hobby Lobby had their patterns on sale for 99 cents. I bought the pattern for her costume. I need to buy the fabric. Find the little bow and arrow. Find the time to actually make the costume too. When I was a kid, our costumes came in a box...complete with a plastic mask. Remember those? I think the only store bought costume she's ever had was Winnie the Pooh when she was maybe 2 or 3. I should find the pictures!

Our church has a harvest festival for the community each year. We dress up. Last year, she went as a bubble bee. I was a deer. Hubs was a hunter. LOL That simply means it was so cold he wore his camouflage overalls and I wore a brown hoodie and reindeer ears that I have from Christmas. I should point out that we were greeters at the festival! It was cute. I don't know if we'll dress up this year or not. I've always wanted to go as Charlie Brown and Peppermint Patty but the weather doesn't seem to cooperate.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Hot Spots

Last night I found myself reading over at Fly Lady's website. I have known about her cleaning system for years but last night I had a link regarding the site in an email and clicked over and read some more. I read a little bit about "HOT SPOTS"....you know, those places in your house where "STUFF" seems to accumulate. In some houses, there are apparently a couple of hot spots. In mine...there are several.

First, the kitchen table. It's directly in your path if you come in through our garage or if you come in from the back porch. This is a place where The Bug seems to place anything related to school, we have a tendency to sit mail here. Or small shopping bags. Right now there are two hats hanging on the back of the chair nearest the door.

Next, the dining room table. This one is worse for me. It's where all of my school books, notebooks, notes,and projects accumulate. This is the place where things that need to be returned (library books, that skirt that looked so cute at the store and not so cute when we got it home...things like that) gather.

At the top of the stairs there is a short wall - just the right size for "things". Right now there's a small selection of t-shirts that need to be returned to my parents' house from inpromtu spend the nights that The Bug has had. The battery pack to the camcorder - which is ancient and should be replaced! - as well as a sheer curtain that needs to find its way back downstairs and on the living room window.

Lastly, my dresser has become another 'hot spot' in the house. Clothes that missed the call to be packed up at the end of the season. A collection of DVDs and VHS movies that need to be returned to the movie closet from the last time someone was sick and watched tv in bed between naps. A shoe box full of pictures that needs to be sorted through and scrapbooked...one day.

Hot Spots. So this week my goal is to work my way through the hot spots in the house to try to get everything back under control.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Last Day of Freedom

I am trying to type this with a finger in a splint. Apparently I am a dangerous bowler. Apparently I have a sprained finger. Go ahead and laugh - it's been quite entertaining around here as well. Thank you bowling class! But I bowled a 97 with it last night - so that's okay with me.

Today is my last day before starting back in the classroom. Monday morning I'll report to a local school and meet the teacher that I'm with for the first time. I have no idea what her students are like - I only know that she has 15 of them. My plan is to complete my 12 hours with her on Mondays and Tuesdays. For nine weeks total. That's the week before Thanksgiving. Why am I not more excited?

I know... because with my last venture into the classroom, I was asked to file papers. Make copies. Oh and staple some papers...that was a fun one! I was in another classroom one day and the teacher asked me to be a scribe for one of her students (it was in his accommodations). The teacher that I worked with came in, asked that teacher what was going and told me to move. How do you like that? I did not like it much at all.

I am hopeful that this semester will be a better experience. I have to teach at least 3 lessons and record them to submit for a grade to my professor. So far my other four classes are going well and I am working ahead on them as much as possible.

I am supposed to bake some sort of treat that The Bug can take to one of the local fire stations tomorrow to thank those who bravely put their lives on the line for our safety. I am driving 6 of the girls from church to at least five stations and then we are all going to lunch. I still don't know what type of cookie or snack I am going to make at this point. Tomorrow night is Decades Night for the youth at church. She did the '90s this summer (I'll have to post her picture!) - I am not sure what she'll do this time. I hope it's something easy!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Winds of Change

The seasons are changing....you can see it in the longer shadows during the day. There is a crispness in the air. It's like the Earth is coming in from a hot day of playing out in the sun and is ready for a nap. I love when the seasons change, especially from summer to fall...and then on to winter - my favorite season of the all!

I found myself out working in the yard one day this week - something that I haven't done in ages. I pulled some weeds. Sprayed some others. Cut the grass. Washed the lawn mower because it was coated in grass at one point. Enjoyed the day - even without my ipod handy. I thought about all of the work I had put into our yard last summer and how I had neglected it this time around. Once the deer consumed most of my hostas I gave up. I didn't keep the islands and raised beds weeded like I should. Some of the new shrubs have given up as well and need to be replanted. The worst was the bradford pear tree that decided to split in the middle of a storm and tried to eat the truck. Luckily the truck was okay but all of the lumber and debris was stacked off to the side yard and is still there today. It needs to be hauled out to the garden beds and burned this fall once the burn ban is lifted. I need to fertilize the flower beds and decide what to do with the mess around our back deck.

Fall makes me feel invigorated... I want to get outside and get things done. I look around at the inside and see the possibilities of things to accomplish as well. Maybe I'm a dreamer - a list maker who is constantly dreaming up things to do - until the list gets too busy or long and I get lost somewhere in the process. Because of that reason, I want to take it one room - one closet - one corner at a time and get things done the way that I want them to be done around here. Life is short - it's time to stop waiting for the tomorrows to all add up and it's time to start taking advantage of all of the todays that are in front of me.

The same thing goes for me. It's time to stop thinking "one day" and make that day TODAY. Okay, well tomorrow since it's 11:12 p.m. But it's time to stop waiting for a miracle to happen and instead to go out and make that miracle happen myself. No more thinking that I'll deal with it tomorrow. Because eventually all of those tomorrows are going to go away and all I will have are the wishful thoughts of how I wasted my yesterdays.

The winds of change are upon us. I can feel them blowing, lifting the hair from the back of my neck. Whispering to me "today".... "today".... "today"....

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Learning As I Go

The earlier post was an eye-opening epiphany for me. I think I needed to get down on paper where I am at THIS place in my life. I needed a place to put it all until I was able to go back and reflect. The past few days have been a few days of reflection for me.

You that expression about how, to eat an elephant, you have to tackle it one bite at a time. That's got to be my approach to life. The house: Well, it has to be handled one piece at a time. That means if it's one floor, one room, one closet or the tiniest corner, it's all about taking it one thing at a time. I have a tendency to get overwhelmed because I feel like I have to do everything and do it all at the same time. So yesterday, while The Bug was home sick from school, I tackled part of the kitchen. I did some deep cleaning but did not allow myself to feel like I failed when I didn't cover it from top to bottom. I'll finish up in there in a couple of days. Instead in the afternoon I did my dusting and vacuuming and fluffing in the living room.

I am working on getting a handle on my school work. Just like with the elephant, I decided to make a master list of all my classes and when my assignments are due and I am working my way through them. In whatever spare time I have, I need to read 10 middle school books. I've managed to take care of six of them this week. I want to get this part of my assignment over and done so that I can focus on other things....like reading something because I want to ... not because I have to for a grade. Bowling is turning out to be fun and believe it or not, this non-bowler is one of the better ones in my class. That means the rest of my class is really BAD or practicing on the Wii was a good idea. I vote for the Wii. It has allowed me to focus on the 4-step approach, which was driving me crazy the first time we bowled in class.

In all of this I have realized that I need to find some time for me. I spend most of my time worrying about working or going to school or being a good mom and wife. I have read before about people who lose themselves in the process of trying to please everyone else. Maybe that's what has happened to me. I spend too much time trying to please everyone else. So I need to make time to take care of myself because if I spread myself too thin there won't be any of me left for the people who are important in my life. I need to make time to get healthy, too. One step at a time. And a setback is not a failure. That's a hard idea to process because I think once I slip up and eat something I shouldn't, I feel like I have failed and fall back into my bad habits rather than realizing it was a bump in the road and that tomorrow is another day.

These past six months have held a lot of change for us. I am hopeful in the next six months things will have changed for me. One day at a time. One idea at a time....learning as I go. I'm going to have remind myself down this path that you should never postpone the joy of life.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Some Things I've Learned

I have been doing some soul searching lately. Trying to figure some things out as I venture down the road called "Life". Here are some things that bother me about myself...

1. I hate cleaning. Or rather, this is something new. I would rather just not do it. No Nike slogan will work here (Just Do It) because I would rather not. And this is a horrible thing to admit. I used to like to clean. I loved doing laundry. Truth be known, I have never been fond of mopping though. But lately I have not been a very good keeper of the home. I don't know what's happened to me ... but I need to snap out of this and pronto!

2. I have a new hair cut...that I hate. Not strongly dislike. We are talking H A T E. It is too short. I can't do anything with it. It feels like a mess most of the time because I can't do anything with it!

3. I think I am in para menopause. You know, the state before the state of menopause? Because the hot flashes have started. I don't think it's just because I live in the south either. This might explain why I don't like my hair...because I can straighten it... and low and behold a hot flash comes on the scene and I am curly all over again! It's like Mother Nature with a wicked sense of humor!

4. The only person I can blame for my bad habits is me. How many times am I going to start a diet and exercise plan only to fail? I am so sick of this! What is WRONG with me that I cannot do this and get it over with...? Sort of like taking off a band aid... Why can't I just rip that sucker off and be done with it?

5. Attending a big university is NOT all that it's cracked up to be. To be honest, I am miserable academically right now. I feel like I am in this tiny little boat trying to make my way across the world's largest body of water...with two pencils to use as oars.

I think I also have a habit of spreading myself too thin (no weight pun intended...but oh! if it were that easy!). I have a tendency to take on things that I would be better off just not doing. Because when there is too much to do, I find myself not doing anything. Or rushing at the last minute to try to get everything done and really not feeling happy with myself.

Anybody else ever feel this way? Or am I the only little boat with two pencils as oars?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Hello Eighth Grade

The school year has started. Eighth grade. Busy schedule of Math, Science, Social Studies, Gifted English - which I think I just figured out is a 20 minute class?, Spanish, Treble Chorus and Health & Fitness. Got that? Okay, now it's time for my comments....

Spanish. Should be fun. She's reminded me the past few days of the phrases I had forgotten. Like "What is your name?" or "How are you?" or even "What?". This will be an educational lesson not only for her - but for her Momma as well.

Social Studies - she loves this teacher so far. Yes, I know it's the 3rd day of school. But she also has her for home room. She seemed nice at meet the teacher.

Science - this is the year that science becomes fun again and we are both ready! Last year was WAY TOO MUCH copying notes and summarizing chapters. This time it's hands on...just the sort of class my daughter enjoys.

Math - could be challenging but with her I'm really not worried. You know how you hear students are either English/Artistic or Math/Science orientated? I think we are a cross between them both. I started having problems with math when I was in middle school and hated it. She thinks it's pretty cool.... no complaints here.

English - she likes this teacher - and the teacher talks FAST. So does my daughter.

Chorus - same teacher, all the same girls except for three who were promoted. This class is an audition only class and it's apparently becoming extinct. There are hardly any new recruits for the 6th grade class and there is no 7th grade treble chorus anymore. Hoping that she enjoys it a little more this year than last. All of her friends are in the other 8th grade class... we'll see.

Health & Fitness - She seems excited about this one. They talk about the health stuff the first few weeks and then go to the weight lifting room for the fitness part. No running the mile in 100 degrees weather. Let's just hope this isn't the beginning of her getting stuck in gym for the rest of the year. We spent so much time in PE last year that we didn't get to have any of the fun connection classes that were available.

She came in and told me that although her test scores were high enough to exclude her from reading class this year, she is still required to read the 25 books that are mandated. Good thing she likes to read but a bummer of sorts because reading is supposed to be for fun!

She has a friend who is in all of her classes again this year. I am beginning to suspect that this friend's mother has something to do with this. It all goes back to something that happened in 6th grade between two of The Bug's friends. The mother called the school and now it is odd...they have every class together except for connections - because Bug is in one chorus and the friend is in another. I am not sure how I feel about all of this but I just keep my thoughts to myself. When she was in elementary school we found out that a student's mother always requested that her son be in class with The Bug because she was kind to him (he had some emotional behavioral issues) ... I know that the school's will usually permit these requests if the parents call and make the request. I'm just not sure how I feel about it involving my daughter.

Finally, we are spending our last few days of Tweenerhood around here. She'll turn 13 on Monday. Where does the time go?

Sunday, August 1, 2010

One Week of Summer To Go...

Summer is coming to a close here. A week from tonight we will be double-checking to make sure everything has been packed and that the first day's outfit is ready to go. The Bug will start here last year in middle school. We will go to a "meet the teacher" event on Thursday to find out what team she is on ... and hopefully find out that some of her friends are on the same team. In the meantime though we'll spend our days shopping for the perfect outfit and our evenings attending Youth Week - a youth department version of VBS - at our church. In between all of that, we've got to get hair cuts as well.

Her birthday is in two weeks time. She'll finally turn 13! I can remember I always looked forward to turning 13 - like it was a right of passage for me! She's really not said much about it. We are deciding what to do to celebrate and she's mentioned a few things that she'd like for her birthday. There are times when I look at her and wonder where did my little girl go?

Friday, July 30, 2010

From the Beach

I am typing this sitting in my room in the fantastic condo we rented in Gulf Shores. It is gorgeous. Right on the beach with the view of the Mobile Bay from two of the bedrooms. So while we have been here we swam in the gorgeous pool and walked the beach collecting shells. Still a little unsure about swimming in the Gulf but we have had a lot of fun playing in the beach. Yesterday we drove to Florida to play around at the beach as well. We talked about getting on the ferry boat and going to Mississippi just for fun - so that we could say we visited 3 states ... but my Mom, who is here with the Bug and I, isn't fond of the idea of being in the van over a big body of water for that long of a period of time so we decided against it.

I have enjoyed this vacation. It has given me a chance to have some downtown so that I can clear my head. I finished all of my projects and actually got the grade for the hardest one just last night - 100/100. I am excited and psyched about that one because it consumed so much of my time. I have enjoyed my time with my Mom and the Bug. We have laughed and giggled and then laughed more. Eaten Doritos and lasagna. Talked. Talked. and then we talked some more! I think we all needed this time away to just relax. Sad that my Dad didn't make the trip. That Hubs had to work. But it has worked out wonderfully all the same.

School starts back for the Bug a week from Monday. I start back the following week. Time flies when you're having fun... So goodnight from the Gulf of Mexico.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Steel Magnolias

The semester is coming to an end this week. I know I posted previously how I'd never take more than 13 hours. Guess what? I am going to have to take 18 hours this upcoming semester. I know - what am I thinking? Quick, I'll turn the other cheek to give you a better aim. But my advisor says that I may not have another chance to get these courses before I student teach in a year. I have two more 'normal' semesters. I'm taking off next summer and I'll student teach for 12 weeks in the fall. Then I will be done. I don't plan on going back immediately to get my masters. I think my family and I will both need to take a break from my being a student. Plus by then hopefully I'll be a teacher rather than the student. But I have learned A LOT this summer believe it or not. Mostly my own self-reading. And I've written a lot of papers. I'll be analyzing people for months to come!

The Bug has a friend who is moving away this week. She was new to the school this year, but the girls became friends and I was glad. She's the kind of girl who always makes the new kids feel welcome - that makes me very proud of her. It would be easy to wait and let them flounder about but not my Bug. She invites them to sit with her and her friends at lunch. She's just a good kid. A little mouthy sometimes but she has a heart of gold. Anyway, we have been trying to plan a get together so that the girls could all say goodbye....we as in the girls who live here moms....we changed our plans to go out of town because they're coming back into town tonight so that the girls could get together tomorrow before they move. I wanted to take them some place nice so that they could feel a little grown up and have dinner and converse. Because we haven't heard back, two of the other moms decided we could just go over to one of the other girls houses and they could swim. I am not happy. Because I wanted to do something special. I would never say anything to them about how it makes me feel - I wouldn't dare even mention this on facebook! - but I'm not pleased.

But being the southern gal that I am... I called them back and said oh that just sounds great....what can we bring...blah blah blah. Am I overreacting? My daughter was a little disappointed. We were thinking about even going to karaoke and having some fun. Now they'll swim and the adults will get to sit around and sweat. I know, I need to be a big girl about it, right? I could have been at the beach.... I could have spoken up... but there's something about the way my Momma raised me here. You are always polite. Have you ever seen Steel Magnolias? Something to Talk About? In all of those movies, about southern women, we just take what comes our way - in stride. So I'll smile and be polite and all that jazz ... but I don't have to pretend like I like it here on my blog do I?

I feel like I'm being petty. I called my Mom from Macys - standing in the middle of the juniors department - so that I could get it all off of my chest. Sweet Momma always makes me feel better. I don't know what I'd do without her.

And that has been my day - right in the middle of shopping for bras and bathing suits and writing papers. Aren't you glad you stopped by?

Monday, July 12, 2010

If I Ever

If I ever
Decide to take
Thirteen Hours
Again...

Someone climb through
the computer screen
and
SLAP
me!

I'm just saying...

Friday, July 2, 2010

I've Been MIA

I've gone missing again, but don't worry. I've found myself. Actually I have been pretty busy with school and being sick this past month but I am happy to report that I am on the mend.

I attended my final class on the psychology of prejudice today and took my final. I don't know when we'll find out our grades but I feel pretty good about my performance in there. I am glad that it's over and done though because to sit in a lecture hall for almost 4 hours a day for four days a week was a lot to deal with on top of being sick.

I'm actively looking for a job. Preferably a paraprofessional job with the local school system for this upcoming year. I can do that and still do all of my course work and field experience so while it's probably a long shot, I've been putting in for the parapro jobs as they become available. Plus it would give us great benefits for the year!

My daughter has gotten me hooked on Glee. Yes, we are a household of Gleeks. Today she decided to take her allowance for the month and by the DVD at Target so we watched several of the episodes tonight. I have also found that I enjoy Drop Dead Diva - which surprised me but it's cute. I usually end up watching it On Demand as I can never find time on Sunday nights and this way I can avoid the commercials. Saw Toy Story 3 recently. Warning: If you see it, take some tissues! We are going tomorrow with a friend to watch Eclipse. Not sure if I am excited about that one or not.

Hard to believe that school has been out for a month. Where does the time go? Before you know it, with the way time flies, my daughter will be graduating and heading off to college. I am not ready for that!

That's about it for now. Just wanted to do a general 'catching up' post.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Feel the burn...

Feel the burn...as in the burnout. Classes have started and I am already overwhelmed. First day on campus was today and we find out there is another class that deals with the psychology of diversity that we need. So we start the frantic "what do we do?" (that is my friend K and I do - because 3 others knew about the class). I could not stay for it this afternoon - I had to take The Bug to the orthodontist and was almost running late. K stayed - and talked to the professor teaching the class. She said it should be relatively easy - but there are a few projects that have to be submitted and a few tests. We will meet 4 days a week from 1:15 till 4. That makes for a long afternoon - but we will be finished up at the end of the month. So now I am registered for the class (but not without having to jump through a bunch of hoops) and will be there tomorrow. Funny how I started out this semester thinking I only had class 6 days on campus isn't it? But this meets a diversity requirement and counts as an elective so hopefully I won't be required to go to school next summer. I am a little worried about the work load of this class in addition to my other 3 classes that are online. There is a part of me that is frustrated and just wants to quit going to school and go out and get a normal job and then there's this part of me that knows this is a good thing to do. I just wish that "keep going" voice was a little bit louder these days.

But who knows, maybe all of this 'busy' will help me focus on losing some weight. Because I won't have time to eat - much less anything else - for the next few weeks.

Aren't you glad you stopped by my pity party today?

I promise, more positive from here on out. I just need to get motivated to knock out all of the assignments that I can right now otherwise this is not going to be such a fun summer.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

You Gotta Have Friends....

This morning at church, the girls and I had an interesting conversation. Okay, admittedly, most days we have interesting conversations but today's class was really interesting. We are a few weeks behind in where we should be in our lessons, so today we tried to tie up the loose ends on the subject of what makes a good friend. The girls, my co-teacher and I have a tendency to get off subject in class and that happened again today, although the subject matter was very relevant.

How do you go about choosing a good friend? There are a lot of elements that are needed in building the perfect friendship. You want someone who is supportive, encouraging, someone who believes in you. They want you to stay out of trouble. They want you to be the best YOU that you can be. They like you - for you. Not for some personification that you PUT OUT THERE for the world to see. This is the friend who has your back at all times. You laughs when you laugh. Cries when you cry. Loves you unconditionally...and for a room of 12-14ish year old girls it is awesome to hear what they think and how they feel.

It made me start to think... would I encourage my daughter to be friends with someone that I thought was not "good"? Would I encourage her to be friends with someone who didn't have her best interests at heart if I liked that child's parent(s)? Would I want her to be friends with someone who made her feel disposable? How about someone who encouraged her to do 'wrong' over 'right'? And if it all started to go wrong, would I sit down and map out a plan to try to make everything right? Or would I just give in, give up and allow her to do whatever she wanted because it was her life and I was too busy in mine to want to try?

In our class, we have a great diversity of students. We have students who have been removed from their homes and are in family services homes. We have girls who have been adopted. Girls who, for one reason or another, only come to church with one parent while the other comes nowhere near the church. We have girls who struggle with self confidence, grades, boys, parents, peer pressure. friends. We hear stories about girls at school who are having sex with guys. There are students who are lying to their parents about EVERYTHING. Their parents have problems. They, themselves, worry about money, grades, weight, friends...everything. We talk about EVERYTHING. We jokingly call our class "The Vault"....because we talk freely and it stays within the vault unless it could be harmful to them or someone else.

The girls really make me think. What do you value in friendships? Do you find yourself trying to gauge your children in their quest for their friends? Do you try to stress to them the type of people who will make good friends or do you just sit back and let the chips fall wherever they may?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Feeling sorta blah...

I haven't felt well the past two days. Some phantom pain in my left side that has me feeling miserable. It started Friday morning around 2 and continued until around 5 that morning. I felt groggy and miserable yesterday but the pain went away. And returned this morning sometime around Noon. I don't know what it is - but I am miserably unhappy at this point.

I promised The Bug that we were going off right before it started. I am hoping that it passes quickly so that we can head out the door soon. In the meantime, we are watching Flip This House on A&E. What I don't like about these reality shows? They give a poor representation of the state in which we live. Like our local "Real Housewives"...which I hate because I don't know any women like them. Now I love to watch the "New York" version of the show... but I seriously hope there aren't many Bethany Frankel's or Ramona's out in the real world. Or Alex. And I cannot for the life of my figure out Sonja... the newest "housewife"....that word is a joke with that show.

Okay, wish me luck - we are about to head out the door. I must be crazy....

Friday, May 28, 2010

Accentuate the Positive....

Last night after having a conversation with my Mom about life in general, I realized one thing. I don't like to dwell on negative stuff. The bad things that happen in your life - or the people who do them to you. I would rather just go with the good and try to forget the bad things that come along.

We can't all be happy all of the time. Bad things happen to good people. Sometimes good things happen to bad people. We have to live and learn. Sometimes it's a life lesson that we need to be exposed to and other times I believe things happen to mold us and make us into the person that we are suppose to be.

In my life, plenty of 'bad things' have happened. My brother died. My grandparents were all sick before dying. My husband had a brain trauma just 2 months before we were suppose to be married. I lost a job that I loved after the attacks on 9/11. I've found out that people who I thought were my friends maybe were just a friend for a season or a reason and not for the long term. I had the baby blues. My parents have both had cancer. But through it all, I have tried to remain positive. Looking for the good in the bad. It's something that last night I learned should be commended because I have a tendency to be true to myself and those around me.

I hope it's a trait that I can pass along to my daughter. When things happen in her life that would be 'tragic' to a 12 year old going on 13 - I always ask her, is it going to matter 6 months from now? 6 years from now? when you're sixty? I try to show her that even though things don't always go our way, we have to evaluate the situation and move forward. Not being bogged down by whatever is negative. Look for the silver lining. Rainstorms don't mean something bad is coming - they're just helping to prepare the blessings that are going to follow.

I found this on a card in our room when I was cleaning the other night. I might have shared it before - but it's worth repeating. What you're willing to walk away from determines what God will bring to you. That's my deep thought for the day. I would much rather reap God's blessings that sit and stew in whatever it is that is or has made me miserable. What about you?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Thursday - 1 day to go....

Tomorrow is our last day of school. And I am glad. 7th grade, and being 12, has been a lot to deal with. Nothing tragic - just not the fun year that we are use to having around here. But academically things have been incredible. This summer we are looking for fun times to abound and to enjoy the next two months till it's time to trudge back to the school house.

My classes start back next week. Something that I'm not all that excited about...but at least we only meet for one class six days. Do I sound like a broken record? I'm taking three courses this summer - and will hopefully be finishing up in the fall of next year. That's a depressing thought but I will be so very glad when I am done! If you are thinking about going back to school - do it soon so that you won't find yourself wishing the time away until you are finished!

I have decided that Monday is a new beginning for me. I'm going to start riding my bike and walking again. So I figure I have two good days to figure out what the plan is and time to shop before implementing it on Monday morning. And it's a family-wide plan. If it's not healthy, we aren't having it. I feel the strong urge to make a change.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Oops...

Looks like I missed a day in my goal to blog. Sorry about that.

I have spent the entire morning glued to the computer. Looking at Facebook. My email. Everything that is not essential to my needing to get up and get some housework done! But I have an excuse...the cat is beside me on her 'kitty condo' asleep and I would hate to wake her up! Actually her purring is making me sleepy as well.

And since 2 people have called and asked if they've woken me up... would it be such a bad thing to go and take a little cat nap?

Actually I have found an interesting website. Interesting to me because with all of the job changes going on around here, we were wondering how much we spend commuting to various places. This website calculates the commute for you. Some of the information startled me - like spending well over eleven hundred a week in gas and auto expenses - and this does not include parking! If you check it out, let me know what you think.
The Cost of Your Commute

Monday, May 24, 2010

A Little Less Talk...

And a lot more action. That's what I need. I need to do less talking (and thinking) and just react. Because nothing has gotten done around here today. Well, I did go off with my dear friend and had a good time. Then I came home and voila! NOTHING

Tonight we had karate. It's funny - there are nights when my presence is welcomed in the Doju and other nights that I know I need to run to the store or go for a walk on the golf cart paths. Tonight was a 'go to the store' night. That's okay - we had a need to purchase band aids. LOL

My post about weight really has me thinking. That and my conversation with my friend today at lunch. What is the better option to try with dieting? Carb-free? Carb-eater? Calorie Counter? What? Because it is time to act - Last year when I lost some weight, I gave away all of my 'too biggies' so I really am not allowing myself to go out and purchase anything new. I have enough sizes ranging in my spare closet that I could open a boutique! Today the idea crossed my mind that I should organize them by size and as I lose weight, I could just go and shop in my own closet. Shamefully - some of the items still have price tags attached! So maybe I'll make that my project for later this week. It would be helpful because it would force me to really deal with the issue at hand.

I'm also considering getting my hair chopped off again. To know me is to know that I go from short to long to short to long. Right now I think my hair is too long. And my roots are really showing because I cannot decide what to do. A part of me wants to go back to some sort of bob... until one of the girls in my church class begged me not to get my hair cut and to not get "one of those horrible bobs!". Obviously she has never seen me with a bob! So I don't know what to do. So I go around with my hair pulled up with a clip most days because I just don't want to deal with it lately.

So that's the latest. Tonight's going to be an early night for me because I stayed up to watch LOST last night... and feel more confused about that show than ever!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Oh, lonesome blogginess

Dear blog:

I am sorry. Sorry for ignoring you. Sorry for not making you feel worthy of my daily diatribes. Sorry for neglecting you. Sorry for not checking in and updating on the events of our life. As school comes to an end this week for The Bug, I hope to do better. I promise not to be a neglectful owner.

Things here are looking up. The job situation is improving. I have also put in for two open positions with the school system - so I am pushing myself out there and seeing what is available. With my degree program, I am able to work and go to school in certain positions and who wouldn't rather work and get paid for their field experience? So fingers crossed and hopeful that something good will happen.

A funny thing that I have noticed... every time I am doing well on my diet and something bad happens, I fall completely off of the wagon. I have got to stop this because my health is important. Being overweight isn't helping anybody with anything...especially me! I had decided recently to try a carb-free diet, which I actually enjoyed....and believe that it helped me retain things that I was learning at school. I had more energy. I was losing weight. Then the 'bottom fell out' and I started eating potatoes and bread again. Today my weight is back up. So I got up today with the decision to do something about it. I keep saying that I'm going to start walking again - which is great - however I have a bike upstairs that I've not used in months. And I don't need certain weather or even daylight to use it. So this week I am going to strive to make some changes and get myself back on the road to weight loss success. Because I refuse to buy new clothes. Then I read over on Tina's blog about her running a marathon and I'm jealous! And so proud!!!!

My classes resume next week. I'll only go to 6 classes this summer - everything else will be online which is something I am really looking forward to. The downside-the campus has an amazing gym that I should be using so maybe I'll do that a couple of days in the week. I'm still teaching 7th and 8th grade girls in Sunday School and enjoying it. We've just finished up the second week of a four week study on what makes a good friend. It really makes you stop and think about your true friends.

The Bug received the outstanding math student award for her team at school on Tuesday and also was recognized for making As all year. I am so proud of her. She is such a better student than I was at her age. I hated math with a passion... funny considering my first degree is in Accounting! This has been an emotionally tough year for her ... not sure if it's just the age and pressures of being in 7th grade or not. I loved middle school so I am a little disappointed. It could be that she's on one of the smaller teams at school. So we are both glad to see this school year come to a close ... until we realized today that in five years, she'll be graduating from high school...and preparing to start college at the age of 17! Time passes too quickly! On a side note, she has told me that she wants to start running each morning this summer which I think is great. Before I found out I was pregnant with her, I had started running and I think it's a great way to get into shape and clear the cobwebs from the brain.

So in closing, I promise to be around more. This may become more of an accountability journal than anything else. But I can do this! I have to do this!!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

P.U.S.H.

I am at a crossroads in my life right now. You might say a crisis of sorts. And since my daughter, on occasion, reads my blog, I will leave it at that. We are praying about jobs. Seriously praying about them. And expecting some news this week. All of this has me thinking about when you come to a place in your life where you don't know where to turn... what do you do?

My mother always told me to pray when I found myself in a situation where I knew it was bigger than me. Does that make sense? And this is the advice that I've always followed. Letting go... and letting God handle things. But sometimes this is easier said than done. I feel like I've been through the ringer recently. I'm not the type of person who harps on and on about life's problems (unless you're my Mom...she is the one who probably hears all of it). I am more of a 'suffer in silence' kind of gal. My husband is a 'suffer in silence' kind of guy... So when something is wrong, we are both very quiet. Reflective. Still.

In the weekly class that I teach, I challenge the girls to write down their problems and concerns on a note card, minus their names and leave them on the table for me. It's a play on leaving our problems at the foot of the cross. I take the cards and I pray over the situations for the girls all week. I take up their cause in the hopes that they don't worry as much. In doing so, it's allowed me an insight into the things that teenagers worry about most. Money. Boys. School Work. Parents. Grandparents. Economy. These girls are deep thinkers.

I find myself praying a lot. In the car. First thing in the morning when the alarm goes off. Walking to the car. Ironing. I either run through my list of people and prayers or I will pray that God will give me peace and tranquility. I have started praying as I wait to fall asleep at night... I figure it's the best way to have a good night's rest. In all of this, I feel as though I am growing in my spiritual life daily. And when I do this - I just PUSH - Pray Until Something Happens.

And while I'm in PUSH mode, I have to always remind myself of FROG (Fully Rely on God!).

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Summertime...Sweet Summertime

Summer is coming. Fast and Furious. School is out for me after my final in psychopharamacology tonight. YEAH - I spelled it without looking!!! The Bug has a few more weeks left of school. But that'll be over before we know it... and it'll be summertime.

Of course, living in the south, it already feels like summertime. Today is supposed to be a hot, humid day after the rains and wind we've had lately. There's also been this strange finch of some sort that keeps coming and tapping on the bathroom window upstairs - it has us all fascinated because it's just this little window but it comes every day and drives the cat to distraction and the rest of us listen to see if we can hear it. Thank goodness the Bug and the cat have never seen "The Birds"...otherwise, it could get pretty scary!

I am taking summer classes. 3 of them. While I'm not happy about it, at least a majority of my actual 'classes' are online so that gives me a break. I've also decided that as soon as this week is over (I'm working most of the week) I have got to do some house purging. It's amazing how housework can accumulate when you are busy trying to make good grades and spend some time with your family! Right now, I've managed to overtake our dining room with school stuff so that's the first place that I hope to return to normal. Small steps.

It's hard to believe that The Bug will be in 8th grade in the fall. Where does the time go? Before you know it, we'll be packing up and sending her off to college. Maybe by then her Mom will have finished, too!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Would you ever participate in "Wife Swap"?

On Tuesday I had the house to myself while I was getting ready to head out to my classes. I turned on the television in our bedroom and lo and behold, Wife Swap was coming on. What caught my attention was the fact that there were two families - one lived the pirate lifestyle and the other were the complete and total opposites. The second family - well the mom was an organization freak. Not that it's a bad thing. She labeled everything from the shelves in the pantry to the bins in the freezer. Talk about organized to a tee and she looked the part. The pirate mom.... she did let anybody 'swab' the decks. Their house was in total chaos. It was unreal.

It got me thinking. I've always said if Oprah's people ever called me (Or Ellen's or even heaven help us SPRINGER) that there was no way I'd be willing to go on a talk show or an episode of some reality series. Hello, did you not see Hope Floats, where poor Sandra Bullock, the former reigning Queen of Corn goes on a talk show and finds out her husband is leaving her for their neighbor... Her best friend???? Exactly my point. I figure those people who want to tell me something or show me something on national television are there to make a mockery of me or my lifestyle. Because why on Earth would they find something about my fix the breakfast/lunch/dinner and wash the dirty underwear lifestyle to be entertaining?

I didn't stick around to watch the end results of the show. Because for one thing, I knew this one was going to end badly. I saw the sneak peek where the couples sat down at the table and tried to discuss what they'd learned about each other. There was some finger pointing (by a husband) and some 'beeps' inserted over pirate momma's mouth. Just not for me. Too much reality is not such a good thing. Television for me at least, is all about the escape. Kind of like blogging. Few people in my reality know about this little thing that I do for myself. I don't advertise it.

So what about you? Ever thought about going on a reality show? And don't get me started about those real housewives! Because the ones from Atlanta ... well they're not a good representation of the housewives I've seen. I like the New York ones...but they even get on my nerves. I love Biggest Loser - and I have a great deal of admiration for their contestants being able to stand on a scale each week. Because when I weigh myself... I even make the cat leave the room. Heck, I would leave the room too if my presence were not a necessity. So what about you? Are you a reality junkie? Take them or leave them? Inquiring minds wanna know...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Things are Winding Down...

Things are slowing down here. The semester ends in just a few weeks - and I think there's about a month before the summer term begins. Of course, this means that there's a ton of things to do between now and then. Papers to write. A student learning project to complete. Two video-taped lessons and their plans and my reflections to be written. An Individual Education Plan to tend to along with a case study that's a major part of my grade. Quizzes. Assignments. Finals.

You might be surprised to learn that Psychopharmacology has turned a corner...and I am almost glad that I did not drop the course. I have learned that it is possible to drink grapefruit juice and take medications that insist that you avoid grapefruit altogether. In fact, if you drink 8 oz of the 'juice, you only need to take 1/2 of the pill...saving yourself money. Did you know that Benadryl will help you with a 'going problem' as in urinary problems? It is true. And a good laugh gives you 30 minutes of endorphins and things that help you to relax and feel happy. And cumidin, the blood thinner, is actually D-Con. As in rat poisoning. And if more than 2% of it roams freely in your body...it's not a good thing. People who take too much viagra see the world with a bluish tint and the Salem Witch Trials was all a result of people eating Ergot...

I've learned a lot about dyslexia. Okay, a lot might be an understatement. A ton might be better. I'm learning all sorts of strategies to help students succeed in learning. In fact, I'm learning that a good teacher doesn't have to know everything about History or Science...he or she just needs to know how to teach the student to apply their background knowledge and brain power to grasp the material at hand. In other words, a good teacher will TEACH the student how to learn the material. It's been really interesting.

My favorite part is working with a group of fourth graders twice a week for language arts. This happens to also be the class that I seem to get my observations from my professor during. I love these kids and am going to really miss them after my field experience ends next week. They are just a group of great kids and their parents have done a great job of raising them to be respectful...something that we really don't see too much of these days.

For my downtime, I've been trying to tackle some things around here that I've been neglecting for way too long. Like the bonus room - which for all intents and purposes has been a storage room for several months. Hopefully that will change soon. And the front hall closet - which is filled with a bunch of stuff that we don't need or use...that'll be next on my list. Hopefully I'll get these 'eye sores' taken care of soon enough so that I can focus on what's important.