Tuesday, December 30, 2008
1) The evil Wal-Mart and its cashiers....I know people gotta work, but I really hate it when the cashier doesn't interact with me and then doesn't make sure that I leave with all my bags! I usually remember to do this myself, but occasionally I'll have Raelynn with me and I'm distracted. How awful it is to come home with hot dog buns but no actual hot dogs!
2) The parking lot near Lowe's and Kroger. Ever since Kroger put up their gas station, there's no rhyme or reason about how traffic is supposed to flow. My friend Ashley has an interesting name for this mess but I shouldn't repeat it 'cause I'm sure it's offensive to some folks. I hate that parking lot.
3) My daughter's pediatrician and my bank both moved locations this week. Apparently, I'm one of the last people to know. I hate driving up to a place and then having to get out of the car and walk up to the door to decipher the little handwritten note on the door.
4) Another evil Wal-Mart rant...I had to wait for Raelynn's prescriptions for an hour and forty minutes and they still didn't have one of them. Raelynn has bronchitis and has a horrible cough. Guess which medicine we don't have???? You betcha....cough medicine. We gotta go back tomorrow because they say it'll be in then. Yeah, right.
5) Commercials on TV for medication. Really people, I don't want to have to explain what Male Erectile Dysfunction is or explain what birth control is to Raelynn. Also for the record, I hate when medicine commercials start listing all the side effects...I think that if "death" is a possible side effect, you shouldn't take the medication.
6) DVD's that don't have the "English for the Hearing Impaired" subtitles. I'm going to post about this topic at a later time. FYI-I'm hearing impaired.
7) I'm in work denial. I refuse to think about or believe that I'll have to go back to work next week. Perhaps if I don't think about it, work will go away.
8) My STUPID DIAL-UP at home. That's all I'm going to say about that.
9) Art supplies that find their way into the wrong places at my house: Play-Doh in the carpet, markers in the bedroom with no caps, scissors used to cut doll hair....one guess as to who the culprit is (and no this isn't me.)
10) There is only one place to eat in this town that carries Diet 7-Up. I can't have sugar or caffeine. And I can only go to Sonic so much. Water isn't even an option.
11) The water in this town tastes horrible.
12) Losing my ring tones on my phone. I broke my phone a couple of weeks ago and all the cool ring tones were saved to the phone. I don't have the art of the "bluetooth" transfer mastered yet, so I'm looking for people that can hook me up.
13) Paper cuts.
14) I need a sink in my classroom. Stuff is never dusted there and every time I work in the room, I feel like my hands get really dirty. My progress is hindered when I have to go to the restroom to wash my hands.
15) In general, going to public restrooms that have no soap, paper towels, or toilet paper. There is no excuse for this.
16) The evil Wal-Mart shopping bags. They are everywhere. When I'm trying to tell David where something is, I usually say, "It's in the Wal-Mart bag." Sitting at my computer right now, I can count 7 bags that are holding various things. And yes, I already checked them to see if they had the missing items from my shopping trip today--They don't.
17) Mud--all this rain has caused everything to be muddy. When you live in the country like I do, mud gets tracked in the house and gets on everything.
18) Driving in my car without my sunglasses. I have to drive to work in the sun and it's in my windshield again on the way home. There's a point when the sun is in the sky and it's right in your line of vision. I hate that.
19) Weather that can't make up its mind--come on...either be hot or cold..not both within the same week. I can't keep pulling out both wardrobes.
20) Sensitive teeth. Apparently if you brush too hard, you wear away the gums right at the tooth level. This makes for difficultly when getting your teeth cleaned.
21) Getting my teeth cleaned.
22) Raelynn getting her teeth cleaned.
24) Those small paper clips and paper clips that get rusty. I use these all the time and I hate the small ones. The rusted ones make my hands dirty and I already talked about that issue.
25) Missing the coming attractions when I go to the movies. To me, that's missing part of the movie. However, I fast forward through them when I'm viewing a DVD.
26) I just saw a commercial for the movie, "Jumanji." I hate this movie. I like Bonnie Hunt, Robin Williams, and Kirsten Dunst. I just don't like this movie.
Okay....I'm starting to feel better. I think sometimes you just have to let all the crud out. Thanks for taking the time to listen. Reading about what people are thankful for is nice (it's always friends, family, health) but I really like reading what ticks people off (as long as it isn't me.)
Okay..now it's your turn.....what's on YOUR mind?
Sunday, December 28, 2008
I really long to be organized like this in all areas. I've taken many personality and learning styles tests and they have all shown me that I'm in the structured/organized category. I do agree with that to a point. I like things to be orderly and neat, I just don't always succeed at putting stuff back. My mother fussed at me a lot growing up about that same thing. However, knowing my personality like I do and my tendency to go overboard with stuff, I'm afraid that if I try to get too organized, I'll take it too far and become unpleasant to be around. You know those sort of people, right? They're too busy straightening things up to have a good time. Scientists have said that it takes 21 times or about 3 weeks to make something a habit. I'm hoping that's true and I can spend the next few weeks getting everything around me to make more sense.
And when I get depressed that my progress isn't as speedy as it should be, I'll just look at my neatly organized storage bowls and tell myself "I think I can, I think I can."
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
I've decided that this vacation, I'm out to perfect the fine art of doing nothing. That's right people, I'm quitting my work addiction cold turkey. So far, I'm doing well with no withdrawal symptoms.
During Christmas, my two main jobs are to eat and to be with family. My mother is the best cook in the world. Eating is something I don't have a problem doing. Family...well, that's another story. My family tree is intertwined. My brother is married to my husband's sister. A brother/sister married a brother/sister. Other families have to split their Christmas celebrations up, but in our family, we just have one big get together that lasts several days. I sometimes get anxious in large groups of people, so I have to pace myself to get through the holiday. So far, I'm doing well. No one has thrown anything at me, so we'll consider that a good thing.
Here are some of the people that I have encountered over the holiday so far...
1) My husband David--I encounter him all the time so this isn't a surprise
2) My daughter Raelynn--see explanation for number 1
3) My mother Beverly--she keeps us fed, overfed, and then nauseated from eating too much good food.
4) My dad Omis--he never sits still. He just had knee surgery, so he's been sitting more still than normal. He watches the Fox News Channel 24 hours a day.
5)My older brother Hugh--he lives in Denver and is married to my husband's sister Melissa. He hurt his back again so he's been to the doctor twice and spends time icing down his back. He thinks he has now burned his back from the ice and is on his way to frostbite.
6) My sister-in-law Melissa--she is married to Hugh (see #5) and is missing her grandson, Jayden. He's six months old and very cute. They've been married for over 22 years. She's as close to a sister as I've ever had.
7) My nephew Christian--he is Hugh and Melissa's son and is moving here to live with my parents for awhile. He's 20.
8) My father-in-law Leland--he is David's best friend. We see him at least once a week. He lives over an hour away.
9) My father-in-law's wife Mary Ellen: David's mother died right before we got married. Mary Ellen loves Christmas and gets along with Raelynn real well.
10) My sister-in-law Beth: David and Melissa's youngest sister. She lives an hour away. We've seen her at a family dinner and we met her family for bowling the other day.
11) My sister-in-law's husband Roy: I don't know if I would call him my brother-in-law yet. You'd have to meet him to understand what I mean. He works on an oil rig on the coast.
12) My niece Allison: Beth's oldest daughter. Allison's father is John. I haven't seen him yet this trip. Allison is in the ninth grade.
13) My niece Caitlyn: Beth's middle daughter. She is in the seventh grade.
14) My nephew Conner: Beth's youngest child. He is in the fifth grade. I got to be in the delivery room when he was born. That was an amazing experience.
15) Jason: Jason is my niece Allison's boyfriend. I don't know much about him. I only shook his hand when I met him.
16) Miranda: She is my nephew Christian's girlfriend that lives in Oklahoma. She came to visit and spent the night at my parents' house.
17) My sister-in-law Jo: She is the oldest child in David's family. She lives in Texas.
18) My brother-in-law Jack: He is married to Jo. My brother introduced him to Jo.
19) My nephew Richie: He's Jo and Jack's only child. He works at a rubber making plant and lives in Texas.
20) Nikki: She is Richie's wife. I've only met her twice and haven't spoken to her much so it feels funny calling her my niece.
21) Kennedi and Dylan: These are Richie and Nikki's kids. They are 5 and 4.
22)Lacey: She is a friend of Richie and Nikki's and lives with them. I didn't get a chance to speak to her.
23) My uncle Robert: He lives next door to my parents. He is my dad's older brother. He likes to come over and play cards.
24) My aunt Mary: She's married to my Uncle Robert. I can't describe her. You'd have to meet her to get the full experience.
25) My uncle Tommy: He is the brother closest in age to my dad. He dropped by for just a few minutes. He lives outside of town but I don't see him very much.
26) My aunt Dicie: She's married to my Uncle Tommy. I see her even less than Uncle Tommy.
27) Shirley: She lives next door to my parents too. She comes to all of our family functions.
28) Michelle: Some random renter of a house my parents' own. She asked to talk to my dad outside so I didn't get a chance to wish her a Merry Christmas.
29) Assorted family members: We had a catfish dinner the other night for family from David's mother's side of the family. There were assorted aunts, uncles, and cousins there. A lot of the people I've already mentioned were there too.
I'm sure there are some folks that I've forgotten. I've sat around and done a whole lot of nothing so my mind has turned to mush. I think another week of this and I may have the nasty work-a-holic addiction broken.
Let's hope so....cause breaking it is the only thing that I'm working hard at.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Some of you out there are cheering with me and are glad someone else said it. I've gotten lots of amens on the Frosty issue..of which if you did not know...I detest him. But that was an earlier post. Mint is used in lots of things that I just consider wrong. Like mint chocolate chip. To me, that kind of ice cream tastes like someone just couldn't decide what flavor they wanted so they randomly started putting things together. And no, I do not like York Peppermint Patties. Again, why go and ruin perfectly good chocolate by adding mint? I don't like mint in my ice tea and I've never had a mint julep, but I'm positive I wouldn't like it if I did. Another annoying place I see peppermint is in the ever popular round peppermint candies that they give you each time you go to Sonic. You know the ones...they are basically cylinder shaped candy canes. I can't stand these. If I need a breath freshener, I'll pop in a Tic Tac. It has fewer calories, doesn't leave that nasty sugary aftertaste, and takes less time to consume. Also, if you carry a pack of Tic Tacs in your purse, they won't melt and leave a mess. And they sound so cool when you shake the box. Try shaking a candy cane or a round peppermint. They make no sound at all. That's no fun.
People know that I'm right, yet they keep coming up with new and random peppermint pairings. Hershey Kisses has a version called Candy Cane Kisses. Basically, it's white chocolate with little bits of candy cane mixed in. This isn't the best candy they make by a long run. Another ridiculous pairing is with Oreo cookies. Come on, people! What's the matter with the regular Oreo cookies? Why are you messing with perfection? I just don't understand it. There is a reason that peppermint is seasonal....it's just not good enough to have around all the time.
Another mint that I'm not fond of is wintergreen. Luckily, they haven't tried to pair this with anything food related. You'll see this mostly in gum and mints. Where it belongs. A similar issue I have is these toothpastes that are flavored with things like vanilla. But that's a different post for a different time. I just had some wonderful dinner at my mom's and since I don't want to offend...I'm off to get a Tic Tac from my purse. Notice I didn't say a York Peppermint Patty or mint chocolate chip ice cream. They'd just melt and make a big ole mess. Power to the Tic Tac!
Sunday, December 21, 2008
As I have posted before, I really like Christmas...and tacky. And I really love anything that is Christmas and tacky together. On top of the annoying (to everyone else but not me) jingle bells that I have tied to my sneakers, I also decorate my nails for the holiday. Over the years, I've been in and out of "nail rehab." Before I had a child, I considered my bi-monthly appointments a part of my therapy. Now when I have to choose between getting my nails done or buying groceries, I tend to lean towards the groceries, so I guess I found the rehab that works. But I digress.
In the picture above the nail polish on the left looks exactly like my "Jingle Belle" polish by Sally Hansen. You know Sally...she's "hard as nails." I think I found this polish at a Walgreens, because Walgreens is the place where I find great stuff and then when I return to find it again, it's gone. I always keep my eyes open for this polish, but I haven't lucky enough to locate another bottle. This polish encapsulates everything I love about Christmas...it has all the Christmas colors: red, green, silver, and gold and it's GLITTER!!!! Yay for sparkle!!!
Before finding Sally Hansen's Jingle Belle polish, I would paint my finger and toenails a bright red and then cover that with either a red glitter or green glitter topcoat. On top of that, I would add a silver glitter topcoat. At this point my nails were pretty thick with many layers of lacquer. And let me just tell you, it was ugly. I lied to myself that it looked "festive." I noticed that no one else commented on it. I'm guessing since they couldn't find anything nice to say, they chose to say nothing at all.
Before I became "clean" of my nail habit, I took my Jingle Belle polish to my nail tech and asked her to incorporate it into the Christmas nails she was about to give me. She really thought that the polish was tacky and added as little of it to my nails as possible. She didn't want people asking who did her nails if they looked bad. I guess what's important here is that I liked it and I didn't buckle to the opinions of others. I'm getting better at this all the time.
So tonight Raelynn asked for her yearly Christmas nails. I got out my Jingle Belle polish and painted one of my fingernails so she could see it. She immediately told me that she didn't like it. I was afraid at this point that she was going to ask for some Christmas nail art....which I can't do. Imagine my surprise when she asked for red nail polish with a red and green glitter topcoat. She couldn't decide which one she wanted to she asked for both: one finger red, one finger green.
She also wanted this same pattern repeated on her toenails. When I was doing painting, she asked me if I liked the way they looked. And I of course told her, "They are just beautiful, sweetie!" Which I swear is totally true...and thus the tradition is carried on to the next generation.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
It looks so pretty.....I wonder if there is a way to get one and attach it to my dashboard so I can enjoy it as I drive. I've tried decorating the car by putting up a tree, but found that David wasn't as up for it as I was. So whenever I feel a little nostalgic, I go sit in the dark in my daughter's room and remember simplier times at my grandmother's house. Merry Christmas Mana.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
So here's the background. I've been dealing with significant hearing loss since July. I've now gotten the diagnosis: Meniere's Disease. Sounds scary, eh? Basically, it's like how glacoma in the eyes work...I have an excess of fluid built up in my inner ear, which causes pressure on my nerve endings and causes hearing loss and a continual sense of dizziness. Hence, the hearing loss and accompanying ringing associated with it. What fun. There is no known cause and no cure. However, I'm taking medication to help. Another thing I have to do is cut out caffeine and salt. Doesn't sound bad but....no caffeine means no coffee, no diet Coke, no iced tea, no chocolate. And did you know that salt is added to just about everything? So basically I'm down to eating dirt and drinking air. I guess I was looking for a weight loss program and now I have it.
Now here's the other part of this story. As you may or may not know, I have an older brother. He's over 5 years older than me and by the time I got cool enough to carry on a conversation, he was grown and moved out. My brother ended up marrying my husband's sister (brother/sister married a brother/sister) and they are here visiting for Christmas. They live in Denver. They also brought their son, my nephew Christian with them. He'll be living with my parents as he goes to school.
My brother and I share a love for coffee. In Denver, Starbucks are on every corner. Here, not so much. But I must say that Strangebrew Coffeehouse does a pretty good job. This is a habit that can be quite expensive. When I was growing up in Key West, we didn't have any Starbucks. There were coffee shops, but there was nothing but window service. You walk up to the window, the old Cuban men hanging around outside would move out of your way, and you order the most wonderful drink ever: cafe con leche. Basically, this is Cuban expresso with steamed milk. If you ever get a chance to try it, you should. It's great.
My brother figured out pretty quick that if he bought his own Expresso maker, he'd save lots of money making con leche instead of frequenting the local Starbucks for a $5 cup of coffee. So he ended up buying a $300 expresso machine and now he brings it with him when he comes to visit. When we visit him, I certainly get my fill. He'll make it every day. Needless to say, I'm totally wired out of my system. This trip is no different. As I walked up to my parents' house for dinner, I noticed that my brother's shiny red, expresso maker was sitting on the table on the porch. Will I be enjoying any coffee this holiday? The answer sadly, is no. This was a part of Christmas that I looked forward to....drinking cafe con leche, staying up late, and waking up late. Guess that won't be happening to me this year.
So--I'm hoping that Ben and Jerry create some ice cream that is cafe con lech flavored, because I think that'll be the only way I'll get to experience the taste again. Maybe if I had my brother make me a teacup sized cafe con leche with more milk than coffee, I'd be okay. If you see my bug-eyed and deaf during the Christmas break, you'll know the coffee is what did me in.
Saturday, December 13, 2008
I will readily admit that I'm a total sucker for love stories. This is one love story that is so different. Not just the fact that Edward is a vampire, but because of the excitement and intensity of first love. And who doesn't remember that and how it felt, right?
It's really a good movie. I have a couple of weeks coming up with no work. Perhaps I'll reread the series. The depression of having nothing to read hasn't sunk in because I keep rereading the books. I can't say that I've ever done that before. Everytime I reread it, I notice something new. I've been told that the next book will be made into a movie and will released next November. That would be so great. Because by then, I'll have the first movie memorized and totally engrained in my head.
If you want to see the movie, give me shout out. There's nothing more satisfying than bringing someone over the dark side.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Thursday, December 11, 2008
Today is a day of mourning. First, let me say that I'm straying from my Christmas themed posts because I had a small emergency today. Basically, I broke my cell phone. This is major for me. I've never lost it, never had a reason to get a new one. But I guess today was my lucky day...I dropped it on the ground just right and it came apart at the hinge. I felt as if I was missing part of my body--not having a phone hurt that bad.
I went after school and got a shiny new purple phone. It's purty. BUT......I had saved a lot of numbers to the phone instead of the SIM card because I had assigned them a special ring tone or had attached a picture to their entry. All those numbers are gone. And those are the ones that I call.
So....if I talk to you on the phone and/or you want to talk to me....send me your numbers. Until then, I'll just be waiting for you to call me sometime...and of course then, I won't know who you are. I'm not looking forward to that. Send your numbers!!!
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
As I have mentioned before, I love Christmas lights. Given my affinity for Christmas trees, this should come as no surprise. I'm not sure how it started but I've found that just putting lights on my tree at Christmas just wasn't enough. This must have been a grown-up thought because as a kid we never put lights on our house or trees in the yard at Christmas. The only lights you could find would be one little strand on the Christmas tree. At some point when I was grown and making my own money, I realized that I could buy as many lights as I wanted and put them wherever I wanted. This must have been a liberating moment. I only wish I could remember it.
In college, I used blue Christmas lights as a night light. I'm not afraid of the dark or anything (not that I like it too much) but I found that the glow of the lights was very soothing. This is an important thing when you're pretending to be a grown-up and you think you have such a hard life. My stresses then were nothing compared to the ones I have now. After I graduated college, I moved into an apartment. Since I rented, I couldn't put holes in the walls to hang my lights, so I settled for stringing them around the balcony railing. The condo association had a Christmas balcony lighting contest. It would be safe to say that they didn't even stop as they went by my balcony. One puny strand wouldn't win it.
Since that time, I have used Christmas lights in my classroom. Year round. I think it started by stringing one innocent strand around the board with the intent of "drawing attention to the board." Yeah, right. I liked the look so much that I expanded my light collection and looped them from my drop tile ceiling frame. I found other things in the room that also looked good wrapped in lights. I think that I had a total of seven strands, all connected end-to-end. One easy plug turned my room from standard to tacky in just a second. I put them up at Christmas and liked them so much, I kept them up year round. It was very calming to my students during our read alouds. I'm sorry to say that my twinkle fairyland was shut down because I was breaking something they called "fire codes." I think this was a conspiracy by The Man to squelch my festiveness. I mean really....me? Burn down a building with Christmas lights? Not possible!
And then I moved to Mississippi. I'm sure we have things like "fire codes" here but so far, I've not been told to take my lights down. I currently have 5 multicolored strands looped from my classroom ceiling, one purple strand around my homework board, and multicolored lights around my front and back white boards. This is offset by white lights around the door so that I can place different plastic holiday covers on them. I have plastic light covers for just about every holiday. My room definitely looks interesting. There are parts of me that is screaming, "It just looks so tacky!" but honestly, the kids totally love it. And I do too. I'm keeping them up until The Man tells me to take them down.
I've also found that battery powered Christmas lights can be used for more than a wreath. As you may know, I often dress in costume at school. During the last week before our Christmas break, I give each day a theme. On Christmas Tree day, I dress in a green dress with little ornaments pinned to my dress. There are pockets on this dress where I store the battery pack for my lights, which are also pinned to my dress. The outfit is completed with gold garland as a boa and a headband with an angel perched on my head. I get lots of stares when I wear this to school. I wonder why. I don't keep the joy to myself though, I also let the kids in on the fun...they're welcome to dress up too.
This week, my sweet friend Carrie gave me a Christmas necklace and matching earrings that have lights. Any yes, they not only are shaped like lights, they actually light up! They are so great!!!! They will go nicely with the rest of my extensive Christmas accessories. Some may view my lights as a little "too much" but I figure hey... most people are pretty easily distracted. Why not give them something interesting to look at? After all, a walking Christmas tree that teaches math may not be enough to capture the attention of 25 fourth graders.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Saturday, December 6, 2008
So I said earlier that I would try to blog this Christmas season about Christmas stuff. So I'm not going to disappoint. My house has a Christmas tree in every room in our house. Mind you, they are not all big, but you definitely get the festive spirit when you walk through my house...(and keep your eyes averted from all the clutter lying around.) It should come as no surprise to you all that at one time, I also had a Christmas tree in my car. Notice I said had--as in-past tense of currently having such tree. Let me 'splain.
One time I went shopping at Walgreens looking at their Christmas stuff. I like to give the evil Wal-Mart a run for their money and you can usually find some neat stuff at Walgreens. This occasion did not leave me wanting. On the decoration aisle, I found a Christmas tree that had suction cups so you could attach it to the window of your car (on the inside of course.) It also had Christmas lights that were attached to a cigarette lighter adapter. So of course I was real proud of myself for being so festive. On the down side, I was sad that I didn't do more night driving so everyone could see my cool car Christmas tree. As it was, I had to put the tree up on the window in the back seat so I could see out both windows for stupid stuff like on-coming traffic.
So I don't remember where we were going or why we were taking the car that I usually drive, but for some reason David and I were driving (at night) down the highway and I plugged in the Christmas tree. David is a good driver. Always has been. I've even posted about all the things he drives well. So you'll understand why he got very freaked out at the sudden bright lights that appeared out of his peripheral vision. Once I explained what it was, he asked me to remove the tree and not put it up anymore in the car. He said it could cause an accident. As if. Like I couldn't see out the windows and be festive. (Actually I think he was right but I'll never tell him that.)
It was a long time ago when this happened and for whatever reason, I no longer have the car Christmas tree. I keep hoping that I'll find another one so I can continue being festive everywhere I go. I often browse the local Walgreens in hope that they'll have it again. I'm sure you can buy one over the Internet, but after I was the victim of identity theft (now there's a long post in the making) I'm a little leery of buying anything from a "company" that sounds like it's run out of someone's basement. I'll just have to settle for looking at the trees in my house to keep my spirits up.
But please...if you find one of these trees for sale....let me know. I'd like to see if I can make that tree stick to something else--something that won't cause me to wreck.