Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Then we drove. And drove. And drove. We've stopped for the night here in Blackwell, Oklahoma. We ate lunch at a McDonald's in Kansas. For dinner, we ate a diner next to the hotel we are staying in now.
Tomorrow will be a long day. Thankfully, the weather has been cooperating. It's been cold but not icy. That's a good thing.
Good night all.....I'll let you know when I get back in Stark Vegas. It'll be good to get home and sleep in my bed.
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Let's see....where did I leave off? I woke up early again (yes, thanks to Raelynn again) and got up. My parents and Raelynn were already up. In a few minutes, David came downstairs and joined us. My mom made fried egg, cheese, and ham sandwiches. Yummy!
My mom, sister-in-law Melissa, Raelynn and I went shopping. Before that was possible, we made a Starbucks stop. I got a caramel frappicino and Raelynn got a vanilla flavored milk. Melissa got something like a Dirty Chi without water and foam with an extra shot of something. Mom got a cold coffee drink.
After the much needed coffee run, we went to Barnes and Noble. I was looking for some things to pick up for Raelynn's birthday which will be in a few weeks. I found her several books that I know she'll love.
After the book store, we went to Hobby Lobby. I spent some money on discounted ribbon that I can't get at home. (Thanks to Walmart for getting rid of the crafts department!) I make teacher signs for their classrooms and decorative clipboards. I expanded my color palette so I should be good for awhile.
For lunch, we stopped at a place called Mimi's Cafe. Simply wonderful. I had the French onion soup and a turkey sandwich on some fancy bread with even fancier flavored mayo. It was delish.
After lunch, we came home and I've been on the computer ever since. I'm listening to clothes in the dryer, so I can fold when they are done. There are currently many butts in the kitchen. I think Melissa is making fajitas for dinner and it requires lots of support in the preparation department.
Tomorrow we leave to go home. There is supposed to be a really bad storm coming our way. I'm praying that we'll have a boring trip home.
Monday, December 28, 2009
Okay, so on to today's activities. I woke up early YET AGAIN (yes, due to Raelynn) but this time I managed to go back to sleep for a couple of hours. Eventually I got up and came downstairs. My mother, Raelynn, and my brother were up. My brother made cafe con leche for everyone and then my mother cooked egg, cheese, and bacon sandwiches. Yum-O!
Sunday, December 27, 2009
We went to my brother's church this morning for worship time. His church is really nice and for the most part, people here dress up for church. Now keep in mind that I'm the queen of comfort. Also, I don't own (or want to own) winter type clothes. Somehow the regular summer type clothes I wear to church would stand out around here. So, in preparation for that, I went and bought a dress in Starkville before coming here. I wore it today but it wasn't nearly as comfortable as I had hoped it would be. Part of the problem may also have been that I was wearing hose and high heels. These are two things that I really stay away from. Back in the day, I'd wear high heels because I thought it made my legs look good, and it did. (My legs and feet are probably my best physical features.) But when you get older, it just doesn't become practical. And I don't really care if anyone thinks my legs look nice now (but know that they do.) As for the hose, I find it very uncomfortable. I rarely wear them. I think I wore them at my wedding 14 years ago and since then have worn them about 3 times. Today I wore them because I didn't want to freeze. I wore the heels because I couldn't find a decent pair of winter type church shoes in Starkville. Also, I'm not fond of closed in shoes. My winter shoes that I wear to work are slides. I do have enough sense to know that slides (with a closed toe) don't look good with a dress. So, instead of buying new shoes that I hate, I thought I'd just use shoes that I hate that I already have. I saved a few bucks the way I see it.
When I got dressed this morning, I put on the hose and really quickly made a huge hole in one foot. Great. And wouldn't you know that I didn't pack the clear nail polish.. The good news here is that I got the extra large size so the hole never went anywhere. However, the down side is that the hose slowly started to congregate around my ankles. At one point, my niece was looking at my shoes and said it looked like my heels had straps. What? How did I manage to look like a retard? I thought I had planned for this.....I guess not. The church service was good and no one was pointing and laughing at me (this IS church after all) so I made it through. Know this though, I threw the hose away the moment I walked in the house and buried the shoes in my suitcase. Oh, and did I mention that I slipped and slid on the ice getting in and out of the car at church? Nice. At least I didn't fall. That would have been bad.
After church, my brother suggested we go to a restaurant called Spicy Thai. I've never had Thai food before, but surprise surprise it's basically Chinese food. I ordered something called Moon Harbor. I know, it sounds like a song, right? Basically it was ground chicken cooked with onions, peppers and you eat it with some rice on lettuce leaves like you were making a taco. It was pretty good. I like Chinese food, but given a choice, I'd chose something else.
After that, I came home and organized my stuff and Raelynn's stuff. My sister-in-law keeps a very tidy house and I'm sure that having all these people over here messing stuff up is killing her. I'm trying very hard to keep my area neat. After cleaning up, I took a short nap. Raelynn woke me again (but this time because David asked her to) and we went for a walk in the snow. It was pretty but cold. We walked to an area that in the summer has lots of prairie dogs living in it. I wonder where they are now. Do they hibernate? Do they go somewhere else? Who is enjoying watching them poke out of their holes now? At any rate, it wasn't me. Raelynn walked with us (me, David, and my sister-in-law Susan) and complained the whole way. One minute she's asking to play in the snow and the next she's complaining she wants to go back in the house. We did turn around when she said she was tired. I'm going to certainly get my money's worth out of the pink fuzzy snow boots that I bought for her.
Right now, my mother is sitting at the kitchen table reading a book. My dad, brother, and niece's husband,Tim are watching a football game. My sister-in-law Melissa is upstairs with Jayden, who I hope is taking a nap. David and Susan are sitting at the dining room table with me and playing Upwords. I haven't seen my nephew Christian in a little while so he's either not here or is hiding ( just found him....he's sleeping on the couch.) Raelynn moves from room to room and visits with everyone. My niece Sable is laying on the couch and taking a nap. She's currently 32 weeks pregnant and has been experiencing contractions at night. She's not feeling well. On a side note, Raelynn has named the new baby "Jim." She said this was a good name. Sable and Tim are leaning toward Paxton or Nathan right now. I think Raelynn is still going to call him Baby Jim.
It's a lazy evening. I think we may go out later to celebrate David and my completion of graduate school. Even if we don't you can bet that I'm going to blog about the food later. After all, isn't that what it's all about?
Saturday, December 26, 2009
What you are looking at here people, is one mighty fine mall. Since I don't live near a mall, I take advantage of one (especially this one) when I come to visit my brother and his family. The day started early (again, thank you Raelynn). My mother made biscuits and we had them bright and early. While I ate, I watched it snow. Again. It was pretty. We've now gotten over 8 inches in the past 3 days. After a few hours, the rest of my retail therapy crew got up and we set off to the mall.
Friday, December 25, 2009
I blogged last night and afterwards had quite the good time. David and Susan were sitting at the dining room table playing their 80th game of Scrabble and I was surfing YouTube with my sister-in-law Melissa. My brother Hugh is a computer genius and has wireless high speed Internet. I'm enjoying it to the fullest. Thus, my more regular posting. Well, that and the fact that I don't have any school work to do and I'm in a situation where I can't drive anywhere. Either way, we all benefit, but I digress. I stumbled upon Bud Light's Real Men of Genius ads on YouTube and I swear I haven't laughed so hard in my life. If you really want a good laugh, search for this on YouTube next time you're on. I think we were a little loud and disturbed David and Susan's Scrabble game.
As I mentioned earlier, my family did the name drawing thing this year. My brother drew my name. I was SO HAPPY with my gift. He got me a large Vera Bradley bag that I'll use for toting my school stuff back and forth. I've looked at this stuff before but haven't bought any myself. A week or two ago, I got a Vera Bradley lanyard at a Bunco game where we swapped gifts. Now, I'm the proud owner of two designer pieces. My brother picked out the pattern. It's called Purple Punch. It's purty!! Thank you Hugh! So my rundown is out of order, but here's the events of today:
I went to bed late and work up early last night. I had a horrible dream. I dreamed that Raelynn had been abducted. Usually when I have a bad dream, I can roll over and tell myself that it was a bad dream and that I should dream of something else. That didn't happen last night. I came downstairs in the dark to the living room to read a book or something, and in the process, woke up my mother's dog. Choo Choo started barking and I was afraid that he'd wake up Christian that was sleeping on the couch. So, I wandered back upstairs and went back to a dreamless sleep. I probably woke David up. I think he came to bed around 3:30 AM so he was tired either way.
A little while later, I got up and of course, my mother and Raelynn were already up. My mom made her delicious breakfast casserole and we all enjoyed that.
For Christmas dinner we had a Smithville ham, brussel sprout casserole (I know it sounds horrible, but it really wasn't bad for brussel sprouts), wild rice, green beans, congealed salad (I call this old lady salad) green salad, and rolls. For dessert, my sister-in-law made my grandmother's recipe for peanut butter pie and my mom made a pecan pie for my niece's husband, Tim. All the while, my brother Hugh was smoking a turkey and it turned out great.
After dinner, David and Raelynn went out to the nearest hill to the house and went sledding. It was cold so they didn't stay long. That and the fact that David said that he broke the sled. Afterwards, they walked home. I'm almost ashamed to say that I was sitting at the table playing "Makeup Artist" on Raelynn's DS. I mean, someone has to teach her how to play, right?
So now.....I'm watching my brother, my niece and her husband, and my sister-in-law play a game called "Huggermugger." I'm not quite sure how to play it but I think that Scrabble is getting old. Maybe I'll join in someday. I enjoy watching other people play board games as opposed to playing them myself.
Tomorrow, my mother, my niece, two of my sisters-in-law, and I will go to the Park Meadows Mall to take advantage of the after Christmas sales. I'm not really concerned with acquiring next year's Christmas decorations or wrapping paper at bargain basement prices. I'm more concerned with going to several stores and getting items I need but can't get at home except for online. Either way, this mall is wonderful. While there, I will get a gyro. They have a Greek place in the food court and since I can't get a gyro in Starkville, I take advantage of eating one whenever I can.
Overall, the day has been okay. I tend to get a little overwhelmed while around my extended family. And pretty much everybody else's extended family too. So far, there have been no meltdowns or freak outs. Let's be thankful for that!
Tune in tomorrow for more mindless dribble about nothing in particular. That's the best part of vacation!!!!
Thursday, December 24, 2009
Today is Christmas Eve. Traditionally, this is the evening where we open gifts so the tree can be emptied for Santa's visit the next morning. Not this year. My niece, Sable, is married and is spending Christmas Eve with her in-laws. We'll be doing the present thing tomorrow morning. Santa will have to shove his presents around all the other ones already there. Should be fun, as it always is. I wouldn't be completely honest if I didn't say there was a certain amount of sadness that goes with Christmas. There's all this hype prior to the season and then when it gets here, it's like a big letdown because it's over so quickly and you have to wait another year to have another one. For some reason, as tacky as I am, I don't tolerate Christmas stuff outside of the season. Go figure.
Well, if you've been following, I left yesterday's blog with the pondering of when I'd go to sleep last night. I really thought that I'd go to bed like at 8:30 but I managed to stay up until 11. Not much different than a regular night except there were no papers to grade, no lesson plans to write, and no other school related work! Yay for me!
I woke up early (Thanks Raelynn) and then came downstairs. My parents and Raelynn were already here. My mom made fried egg sandwiches for everyone and slowly people started getting up. Jayden spent the night last night. His crib is in the same room as the one that Raelynn is sleeping in. I know she didn't get to sleep until after 11, so I was quite surprised that she got up so early. I don't get this.....her body clock doesn't seem to work during the school week. I literally have to drag her out of bed. On the weekends or during vacations, she's up with the first light. I think she was lonely and tried to wake up Jayden, but was quickly instructed on the evils of waking up sleeping babies.
I spent some time hanging around the house watching Raelynn hover around and play with Jayden. I think she is really enjoying having a smaller person around that she can interact with. She's there for each moment of his day: eating, diaper changes, bathing, playing....you name it. She makes a lot of noise in the process so about mid-morning I was looking for some Motrin. I didn't end up taking it because I went to Target!
Melissa (my sister-in-law), my mom, and I went to Target for some necessities. I bought some stuff to make some appetizers with and found Raelynn some pink fur lined snow boats. I enjoyed pushing the cart around Target. The only thing I bought for myself was a bracelet. After the Target trip, we went to Chipotle to eat. This place is amazing. I really look forward to it when I visit Denver. I did manage to find one closer to home this summer when I went on a shopping trip with some friends to Birmingham. The only way I can describe it is sort of like a Subway for burritos and tacos. The burrito you end up getting looks and feels like a brick. It's delicious.
When I came home, I ate my burrito and get Raelynn all dolled up to go outside and play in the snow. She had a good time tromping around the yard. The snow came up to the top of her snow boots. She made some snowballs and played until she got cold.
At some point, I got really sleepy so I went to lay down for a nap. That's one thing that I enjoy about vacations. If you stay up late and wake up early, you can always take a nap. David, Melissa, and Susan left to go shopping while I napped. David was going to buy a GPS, but the MicroCenter didn't have one in stock. He did come home with some snow boots. I didn't buy myself any at Target. There was no way I could afford boots for both Raelynn and myself. I've been using my mom's boots that she got for $7 at Hudson's Dirt Cheap at home. I've never been to that store, but that's another post for another day.
For dinner, Melissa cooked jambalaya, salad, and garlic bread. It was good and I don't even like seafood. After dinner, David, Susan (David's sister), Christian (my nephew), Raelynn, and I went walking around the neighborhood looking at Christmas lights. We usually take an evening at home and drive around and look at them, but things were so crazy trying to get ready to leave that we didn't get a chance. Tonight was fun. I don't know what I liked better: the lights or watching Raelynn tromp through the snow. Everyone else walked in the street where the snow was packed down but Raelynn managed to find each snow bank and plow her way through them. The lights were pretty cool too. The only "Denver-y" thing I found was that if you have snow on top of blinking Christmas lights, it looks very cool. I'm a big fan of Christmas lights. (This is one thing that I can tolerate year round.)
After the light watching, I gave Raelynn a bath and washed her hair. She's sitting in the living room with my parents right now watching something on TV. She didn't pick it out, so I can't imagine what she'll get from whatever crime show my parents picked out. I really should have put her in bed by now, but I'm hoping that if she stays up late, she'll sleep late too. I can dream, right?
David and Susan are playing their third game of Scrabble tonight. David amazes me in Scrabble. He really has problems with spelling at times, but manages to whip everyone in Scrabble. Hugh is in the kitchen making cafe con leche (Cuban lattes) and I'm not sure where Melissa is. Christian is wandering around the house. Me.....I'm sitting here typing away on the computer and loving every minute of the high speed wireless service that my brother has. How about you? What are you doing tonight?
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
So the rundown:
We went to the free "continental" breakfast this morning at 6 AM. I'm not sure which continent this breakfast was referring to....I mean, usually there has to be food in order for it to be called "breakfast." We drove next door to McDonald's where we had dinner the previous evening. I had a Big Breakfast. That was a first for me. I'm more of a breakfast burrito person, but since Raelynn wanted a biscuit, I ordered that and shared with her. It will probably be the last time I order a Big Breakfast.
We got on the road early because we had watched the news and it looked like we'd be driving right thorough a really bad snow storm. I don't have issues with snow, I have issues with ice on the roads. We had plenty of that. Literally for 600 miles today, we drove on icy and snow packed roads. David did an excellent job and I am now recovering from the white knuckles that I sported for several hours during the worst of the storm.
We stopped in Oakley, Kansas for lunch at a truck stop. I had breakfast and I think everyone else did too. It was okay, but Huddle House at home was better.
We made several other stops, each with me holding my breath as we got on and off the freeway. Those ramps weren't as cleared as the main road. We counted at least 9 accidents on the way. All of them major. Thankfully, the Lord kept His hand on us and we made it okay.
Since arriving at Hugh and Melissa's house, I have toted all the luggage upstairs, taken a shower, eaten dinner (Melissa cooked chili), and now I'm blogging. I'm not sure how long I'll be up since the guys all tend to be card players and I don't. My niece Sable and her son Jayden are here and I think her husband Tim will show up soon. I don't know how Melissa handles the stress of having all these people in her house. She keeps her house neat and tends to her guests with a smile. I have to say that they are very giving and generous people.
So, my understanding is that all the snow they've had here in Denver over the last 24 hours will turn to ice tomorrow since the temperature will drop to the teens. I'm really wishing I had bought some boots. I always think I'll get some when it rains at home. Maybe now is the time to get them. After all, I did have to buy a new coat today at Walmart. It was in Kansas somewhere, I don't know the name of the "community." (It didn't look like a town but since it had a Walmart, I figure there must be some civilization somewhere.
Anyway, not sure what's in store tomorrow. Whatever we end up doing will be done at home. I don't think I'm ready to drive in the snow and ice just yet. If nothing exciting happens here, I may just go to bed early.
So the question to ponder for tomorrow is what time will I go to bed tonight? How many people will I bore with my texts tomorrow?
For the answers to these questions and more, you'll have to check back in tomorrow to find out.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Welcome to Christmas vacation! Woo Hoo!!! I'm hoping that being done with my master's courses (yay me!) will allow more time for more regular updating of my blog. Let's hope so!
So...let me get everyone up to speed on the background of my Christmas excursion this year. My husband's sister is married to my brother...brother/sister married brother/sister. It makes holidays very easy. We don't have to split up Thanksgivings or Christmases....we just have one large one together....except.....
My brother and his family live in Denver, and we live in Starkville. That's about 1,000 miles. Not an easy trip. A few years ago, we started alternating who went where for Christmas. For the last time or two, we've not gone to Denver. Stuff has gotten in the way. Mostly our classes and lack of money because of said classes. Now that we're both done, that is no longer an issue. So.....my parents, my nephew (my brother's son), David, Raelynn, and I are traveling cross country to spend time with the Denver fam.
We don't all fit in the same car due to all of the stuff that has to be moved. My nephew has been living at my parents' house for the last year and now we are moving him back to Denver. So we are caravanning. My parents and Christian went ahead of us yesterday and drove from Starkville to Fort Smith, Arkansas. We didn't go that far. We stopped in Helena, Arkansas and spent the night with David's Aunt James Helen. (Yes, that's her name....we've decided to call her "Aunt Sissy" for Raelynn. Aunt James Helen doesn't roll easily off the tongue.) We had a nice visit with her and then left her house on our way to Wichita, Kansas. My parents and Christian got here in the early afternoon. We had further to drive so we didn't get in until 6 or so. It didn't help that we spent 45 minutes driving in circles around Tulsa. Apparently, someone is having a grand time spending money on construction in Tulsa. The GPS system we borrowed from my dad (fondly dubbed "Dummy") didn't account for the detours. Neither did we. We kept trying to get on to the correct road but each ramp on to the freeway was blocked. David and his keen sense of direction got us out of Tulsa and we didn't have to stop for directions.
So, for other random stuff:
Yesterday, we ate at Aunt Sissy's house. She made homemade soup and bread. She doesn't have a TV, so David and Aunt Sissy played two games of Scrabble. I went to bed at 8:30. For breakfast, she made homemade biscuits and sausage patties. Yum.
For lunch, we stopped at a Cracker Barrel. I love this place. Whoever thought of this place was a genius. Shopping AND dinner? You gotta love it! I had a meatloaf sandwich and a salad. It was good.
For dinner, my parents, David, Raelynn, and I went to the McDonald's next to the hotel. (Christian didn't feel well so he didn't go.) Raelynn got to play in the large play area with some girls. I think this made up for the fact that the hotel's "indoor" pool is actually outdoors and we didn't get to swim. We made it back to the hotel where I watched The Biggest Loser-Where Are They Now? episode. Fun. I'm also taking advantage of the high speed wireless service at the hotel. Have I mentioned how much I hate STUPID dial up at home?
So tomorrow we're expected to drive right through a winter snow storm all the way to Denver. The high tomorrow in Denver is expected to be 23 degrees. But don't worry, it's a dry cold. That's what my brother always says in defense of living in Denver. He also says that everything is 15 minutes away in Denver. What he doesn't say is that Denver is full of crazy drivers that go very fast. Not something I enjoy.
So anyway, David is torn about the snow storm. On one hand, he bought snow chains for the truck in anticipation of a snow storm. Part of him doesn't want to drive in it, and the other part wants to try out the chains. Which part of him will prevail?
Tune in tomorrow to find out the answer and to learn more useless and random information about my Christmas Adventure.
Sunday, December 13, 2009
First, I just found out last night that I made an A on my last course of my master's degree. This is huge for me. I've maintained a 4.0 GPA....of this, I'm very proud. I'm hoping that this will relieve some of the stress that I've been feeling, but the reality is that I'll just find something else to stress about. I'm not sure what that is right now, but I'm sure it'll be here before I know it. I just hope that I can continue to blog. Not that this is an excuse or anything, but having dial-up at home doesn't make it any easier to check email, blog, or surf the Web.
So....I've finished my master's degree. There's a few days until we get out of school for Christmas break and I'm really pretty glad about that. It's been a long year (and it's only half over.) The week I had off for Thanksgiving was much needed and so will the upcoming break. My family and I are traveling to Denver to visit my brother and David's sisters. (Side note...for those of you that don't know, David's sister is married to my brother. It makes for neat and tidy holiday gatherings. We don't have to share our time with anyone. We just all meet together.) Hugh and Melissa came last year, so now it's our turn. I don't really relish the idea of the very long drive and the possibility of getting snowed in. I don't mind cold weather, I just don't appreciate it when the weather cramps my style. I may not have anywhere to go, but at least I'd like the opportunity to go somewhere if I wanted to.
So today's topic......I have to moan and groan for a second. We're starting our third week without an ice maker. For those of you just joining us, I'm a total ice monger. When I was very small I remember having those little ice cube trays. First we had the metal ones that had a lever you pulled to break the ice and then we got the plastic ones. I hate ice trays. Sometime when I was growing up, we got an ice maker. That was the beginning of my ice monger ways. When David and I moved to Mississippi and we were furnishing our house, I had two requirements. One was to get a washer and dryer and the other was to get a refrigerator that had an ice maker and access to the ice through the door. I got what I wanted.
I've enjoyed having an ice maker at home. It's not often that you won't find me without a soda, water, or Crystal Light with ice in a cup near me. I'm not fond of hot drinks (I'll drink hot chocolate during the season occasionally and only a small teacup of coffee in the morning to perk myself up) and I really don't do room temperature drinks. I would never make it in Europe. I've been told that they don't really use ice over there. My ice mongering ways have even led me to have ice at school. When I taught in Florida, my school had an ice maker that teachers were allowed to access. I bought this HUGE Circle K cup that I filled with ice every day. I would then either fill it with water or transfer some ice to a cup and drink some diet soda.
When I moved to Mississippi, the school I currently work at doesn't have ice that's available to staff. I think that if I wanted some ice, they'd charge me by the small Styrofoam cup. So I do the same thing....add water to the ginormous cup or use the ice for a soda. I just get the ice from my house instead of at school. So fast forward to three weeks ago.
I woke up, got ready for the school day and then when fixing my breakfast, I reached into the ice maker to get some ice to go with my Crystal Light I was planning to drink while I ate breakfast. When I looked at the ice maker, I could see that the arm of it was not moving. It looked like it stopped moving before it made it all the way back to the bottom. In other words, it was broken. It took David a few days to look at it, since it seemed we had something going each night. He finally took it out and looked at it. Apparently he wasn't able to find anything obviously wrong with it. Not good. A few days later he took it all apart and did some diagnostic testing on it. He hypothesized that the motor wasn't working and then ordered one on the Internet. It took FOREVER to get here. (Like over a week!) David replaced it last night and it still doesn't work. He then pulled out the fridge to see if there was any blockage in the water pipes and cleaned off the filter. He also replaced the water filter too. Still doesn't work. We're about a week away from going to Denver so David won't be able to do anything until after Christmas break. He said that he would probably replace the whole thing. Let's hope that works.
So that leaves me in a quandary. I still require ice. For home, I've bought a couple of bags of ice and put them in the ice tray. This lasts me for a couple of days. For school, I stop at the gas station for a cup of ice each morning. It's a pretty large cup and it costs 59 cents. You can't beat that. I put the cup in the fridge at school that I keep cold enough to keep the ice frozen. So far, my plan is working out. All I can say is that if this was summer, I would have had a freak out/melt down by now.
So, if you have any pull with the big guy in red, please mention to him that I'd like a commercial grade ice maker. For my house. Really. I would ask him myself, but I have a phobia of store Santas (that's another post for another day.)
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I've been waiting for this day for a long, long time. I've been anxiously waiting for this movie since the first movie, Twilight, came out last November. I'm embarrassed to tell you how many times I saw it at the movie theater....Wendy knows that number (she was with me most of those times) and then of course, I've watched it a million more times since it came out on video. I have to say here, that if you were to judge the Twilight movie simply on its own merits away from the book, it wouldn't be my favorite movie at all. Knowing the series like I do, I can't help but love it. Even with all the mess ups that I caught the first time I saw the movie and didn't have to wait for Internet Movie Database to update. It is/was a classic.
So here's what's on my schedule......
-Go to school and teach.
-Hurry home and try to take a nap. I'll have Raelynn with me so I doubt that will happen.
-Get up and take a shower and then head over to Kathy's house.
-Enjoy some great company while watching The Office at 8.
-Watch Twilight and enjoy a small New Moon party with some great friends.
-Leave Kathy's house to wait in line forever to go to the midnight showing of New Moon with hundreds of loud, crazed teenagers. I just hope I'm not sitting in the front row.
-Come home and try to sleep for the remaining 2 hours before I have to get up for school.
-Try to make it through Friday without passing out.
Sounds like quite a list, but I'm up for it.
Did I mention that I'm going again to see New Moon on Friday night with some teacher friends? I know, I've got a problem..... I've got a fever and the only prescription is more New Moon!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Did you miss me? I know I certainly missed blogging.....Good news....I passed my comps and my last graduate class is almost over. Finally, I'll be able to breathe...and blog.
So I went into work today. Doesn't sound unusual, right? Today is SATURDAY!!!!! Did I mention that I don't get paid for Saturdays? Even so....I can't work Monday through Friday if my classroom is such a mess. You'd think that I'd spend some time daily to clean, but believe it or not, I don't have time. When the kids are here, I'm all about them. Their learning, their issues, their problems, their papers.....you get the picture. So I'm here on a beautiful Saturday and cleaning up. As I'm doing so, I've reorganized my staplers. Yes, that's right...I said staplers, as in I have more than one. There is a reason for this.
Let me 'splain......
See, to teachers, there are several office supplies that one can't do without. Tape dispenser, glue, paperclips (I prefer the silver jumbo size but that's a different post for a different day), White Out, Sharpie markers, rubber bands......you get the picture, right? Of all of these supplies, I am the most protective of my staplers. Looking at my desk right now, I see that I have 6 staplers on or near my desk. Each has it's own purpose and it's own place. I have this lovely purple basket that I keep them lined up in.....so cute. Anywho...you must be wondering about my loyalty to staplers, so I thought I'd do a lineup for you so you can see just a little that goes on in my head.
I would be terribly remiss if I didn't start off by giving major homage to Milton, from the movie Office Space. Here is a guy who spends his time mumbling and basically creeping everyone out but his best line in the movie is , "Excuse me, I believe you have my stapler." It doesn't sound so great at first, but imagine a psychopath mumbling that all day. Classic. Watch this movie if you get a chance. I think the missing stapler was the straw that broke his back....I won't spoil it for you, but Milton gets back at the company for taking his beloved stapler. And the truth is....I can see his logic. Once you've had a great stapler, you can't go back.
I'll start with the stapler that I like the least. I have a Stanley Bostitch stapler in my basket that I got from some school supply catalog. It doesn't work so well. That's why this is the stapler that I let the kids use. I love my students but if something has the capacity to break, they will find a way to make that happen. Frankly, I consider this stapler disposable. I will lose no sleep if I have to throw it out.Next would be the reliable Swingline. I have two of these. They are very hearty. One of them I got from a school supply catalog and the other was given to me by one of my favorite people, Kathy S. She and her husband own Copy Cow here in town and hooked me up with some sweet school supplies last year. I use these staplers when I want to put together 3 or 4 sheets. These are also the staplers I use when putting up my bulletin boards. They open really well. They rarely jam and I don't let the kids use them.Next on my list is the ergonomically correct Bostitch upright stapler. This one feels good in your hand when using it. I'm guessing that's why it's ergonomically correct. This one I bought from K-Mart when I lived in Key West. It's been around a few years and is still trusty. In its old age, it does stick every once in awhile but all in all, it's a good stapler. This is the one that most grown-ups reach for when using a stapler in my room-kids aren't allowed to use it.Next on my list is the Paper Pro. This thing is amazing. It will staple like 20 sheets with just one finger and with very little pressure. It's a great medium weight stapler. I find that I don't use it much anymore because I'm either stapling 2 sheets of paper together or it's 60 sheets. I bought this stapler myself at Wal-Mart several years ago and used it mostly to staple students' weekly graded papers. It didn't work so well at times because I had more than 20 sheets to staple. One other drawback to this stapler is that it doesn't work so well on 2 sheets of paper. It staples with such force that often, it will lose the top sheet because the staple hole it made is big. It basically staples through the paper. I hate when the kids sneak this one off my desk because not long after they've stapled their 2 sheets together, I'm not finding the top sheet. But I still wouldn't give it up.
This is my all time favorite stapler. This is the one that if I lost it or it was broken, I'm positive that I would shed tears over it. This is the One Touch from Staples and it cost me something like $40. I didn't want to pay that much at the time, but I've not regretted getting it. This is the Mack Daddy of all my staplers. This one is advertised as being able to staple 60 sheets with one finger and minimal pressure. I'm here to tell you that it can staple more than 60 sheets. The only time I use this stapler is when I'm putting together the weekly graded papers for my students. It's so special that I don't have it in the basket on my desk. It sits in its own place on the shelf behind my desk. This is to insure that no one randomly reaches on my desk and helps themselves. I wouldn't want to be the kid that picks this stapler up from its place. There's no telling how I would react. It's truly a thing to behold.
Well, that's about it. I think I have about 5 more staplers than the average teacher. But now that I think about it.....when have I EVER been average? Answer....never.....that's why I have 6 staplers and if one of them is missing, I'll be walking around the building saying, "Excuse me, I believe you have my stapler."
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Lots going on this week....gotta get caught up on all my school work and start working on my presentation for my comps. In addition, I now have another paper and project due for my current class......I'm so ready for this to be over. I don't think I'm going to bite off anything major for awhile. If I do, kick me.
Going to a couple of Halloween parties this weekend. Raelynn has been invited to a friends birthday party (always with a Halloween theme) and then on Saturday, Raelynn and I are going to Wendy's house and going trick or treating in her neighborhood and then party at her house. I really like Halloween parties....I've not been to many, but the best ones have kids at them.
Think of me this week as I try to get more work done.....I'm hoping to be sitting in the pumpkin patch waiting for the Great Pumpkin, because I know that my pumpkin patch is the most sincere.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Saturday, October 17, 2009
When I woke up, I felt pretty good...the weather outside is beautiful......I think it's currently in the low 50's and the sun is shining. That may not be entirely true since I'm sitting amongst all the "Inactive Reference Materials" nowhere near a window on the fourth floor of Mitchell Memoria Libary. I wish I could be outside. This weather is one of my favorite things about Mississippi. In Key West, all we had was summer and I'm not really a big fan on heat.
So I went to Huddle House for breakfast (alone) since David and Raelynn went to his dad's house to help David's dad haul wood. David's dad cuts and sells firewood, and this is his busy season. Raelynn is going because I can't concentrate on my studies when she's running around. (I don't think facebook and blogging helps either...) I ate some breakfast, got some soda in a "to go" cup and headed to the library. I walk in and the smell of it hits me everytime. All libraries smell the same. I'm convinced it must be because of the books.
The first draft of my stuff for comps is done...all I have left to write is the reference pages and then go back and check my stuff to see if it all matches the APA format. Fun. Today my focus is to read and summarize 7 chapters in my textbook to prepare for this upcoming test.
Things are pretty stressful. For some reason, I feel sad. Probably from being cooped up in this library for so long. In just a short time, this will all be over and I can breathe again. Anyway, I just wanted to check it with everyone and let you know that I am still here. Please continue to pray for me.......I'm having a hard time staying focused.
It might be all the books....I don't know.....I'm just sayin' is all.........
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
I liked this shirt. Only...I'm not "pretty sure" prayer works...I know it does. As I am working on my comprehensive finals for my graduate work and preparing for a midterm, please keep me in your thoughts and prayers. I want to give God the glory for the work He has done in me. I know that I cannot do this myself, that I must lean on Him for wisdom and understanding. I don't always remember that. There are many "marbles in the jar" as David would say. The daily stresses of teaching, the task of raising a responsible child, and doing a decent job in my graduate work seems like a daunting task. I know that with prayer, and God's mercy and grace, I will prevail. Please pray that I'll get through this with good scores and that I keep my wits about me. Thank you!
Monday, October 12, 2009
Please pray for my wisdom and endurance during this trying time. And when you hear me say that I want to do something that most definitely is huge and stressful, just kick me. You'll know where to find me.....sitting at this table on the third floor of the library.....buried alive under books and notes.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
This is coupled with the daily stresses of my life. Work has gotten even more demanding, if that's even possible. I'm not given any more time or money in which to make these miracles happen....I'm just supposed to make it happen. I feel pretty strung out right now. I have a huge stack of papers that are needing grading right now.....and I don't think it's going to get done today. Geesh.
So anyway, I need to get off of here and get back to studying. I'm gonna need lots of time to find my way out of the sand.........
Pray for me.
Friday, October 2, 2009
Things currently on my to-do-list:
*make southwestern salad and rueben casserole for David's family reunion tomorrow
*go to David's family reunion tomorrow
*go to the MSU/Georgia Tech football game with Kathy, my dad, and my nephew
*try not to upset Kathy by implying in any way, shape, or form that MSU may lose the game
*put clothes away
*watch the three Netflix movies that have been sitting on my coffee table for two weeks
*start studying for my mid-term exam
*start working on the impending comp questions
*did I mention grading papers?
Love you guys but I gotta go and make the food for tomorrow. I'll do it while watching "Project Runway." I love this show!
Monday, September 28, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Saturday, September 19, 2009
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
First treat of the day.....Krystal's Original Breakfast Scrambler. I'm not a paid actor for them, but I have to say that this is one of my favorite breakfast treats. If you haven't tried it, you should. Just don't go on Friday mornings around 6:30 AM. There's usually no line so I can drive right up and get my stuff quickly. The Original Breakfast Scramber is a wonderful cup of buttery grits, covered in scrambled eggs topped with melted cheese, and a sausage patty on top. All of my favorite things in a cup. Totally delicious.
Another treat is my lunch. (Do you notice a trend here?) My school has a potato and salad bar for the teachers each Friday. The potatoes are very good and the salad tastes better than the salads do throughout the week. I think it's because it's Friday. Everything is better on Fridays.
A usual Friday treat is my attire on Fridays. I wear all the glitter makeup....and usually don some type of hat or costume. Also, Friday is t-shirt and blue jeans at work, and I'm totally into that.
There are so many wonderful things about Fridays......what's your favorite day of the week?
Monday, August 17, 2009
Now don't get me wrong.....I like how bulletin boards brighten up the hallways at school. Most professional places lack this sort of creativity. There are two parts of bulletin boards that I don't like. The first is thinking of a decent display to do and the accompanying corny title. The other is just the sheer time it takes to put the thing up. And if you've got even the slightest bit of OCD, you can forget it...because the border won't be right and your letters won't be straight. I think that doing bulletin boards may be part of the OCD'ers intervention and recovery plan. I've been out of bulletin board rehab for quite awhile and am proud of my progress!
The aspect that most pains me is getting the idea for a bulletin board display. I have several books and of course the Internet is really good for stealing ideas too, but I find that most of my boards come from my brain after much worry and debate. I have an idea for one and then start to thinking about a decent title. This is part is my roadblock. You see, I don't think people realize that creating a bulletin board with a cheesy title is a "must have" in elementary school. More often than not, you do some title that has a play on words. What kills me about it is that most kids that young don't get it. It's wasted humor.
For example, a couple of years ago, I did a back to school bulletin board with the title, "We're a GRAPE bunch!" and took purple party plates and wrote the kids names in paint pen on them and arranged them on the board like a bunch of grapes. The kids didn't get it. They did tell me that I spelled the word "great" wrong. For that, I was grateful. At least I got them to thinking. The titles are really hard to come up with for me, so I usually "collaborate" AKA ask the teachers around me what a good title would be. The teacher across the hall from me LOVES to do bulletin boards and really gets into it when I ask her. She is very creative and has come over to help me out many times. She plans her bulletin board displays a year in advance. Obviously she's never heard of the bulletin board 12 step program.
One Christmas I was hanging students' stockings in the room on the backdrop of a butcher paper fireplace. My lovely teacher friend came right over and drew my bricks for me. She has drawn more bulletin board stuff for me than I'd like to admit. I'm not sure where the line is from "collaborator" and "creative genius" but I find it's pretty blurry. Her handwriting is really nice too....that's always a bonus when she's lettering something for me.
As you may not be aware, we've just started back to school. Outside my room I have two bulletin boards and I cover my door and use it as well. The kids did the large board at the end of last year and it looks fabulous. They made a huge sailing ship with mast and pirate flag sailing on an ocean of waves. They made the sun setting in the distance and an island of treasure just on the horizon. I added pictures of the students' faces in the boat and the title says, "We're sailing into fifth grade!" I think most kids get this since the obvious association is with a sailing ship. (Side note...I have some very artistic students. They ate this project up.) The other outside bulletin board is used to chart students' progress in Accelerated Reader. The title for that one is "A.R.e you meeting your goal?" (I stole this title from a teacher friend.) On my door I have a map of the United States that says "Mrs. Rosamond's class is going places!" and the students have little pictures of themselves attached to little cars and they're driving around the door. The border of the door is surrounded in post cards. The saving grace for me here is that a couple of my students' parents came in this summer and put it together for me. I gave them the idea and they went with it. And went they did. It turned out fabulous!
So I've already started worrying about the bulletin board displays for next month. I think that the kids doing the big one in their spare time was great....they really enjoyed it and have asked when they could do another one. (It took lots of planning and measuring to do it right! Ahhh authentic learning!) It does take some time to do so we'll have to plan it accordingly. If you have any "cheesy" ideas for a board....let me know. One can never have enough cheese in their life!
Saturday, August 8, 2009
So today's post is about Betty and Veronica. You remember them, right? I can remember my excitement in getting each comic book. Back in those days, they were larger, like the size of a magazine. There would be the Double Digest that was smaller and had more stories in them too, but I didn't like them as much. I've read lots of comics from the whole gang in Riverdale. None of them are as interesting as Betty and Veronica. I enjoyed it so much that I played Betty and Veronica with the kids from the neighborhood. Mark was Archie, Kim was Veronica, and I was Betty. I really like Veronica more (and no, it isn't because of her money-I just think that brunettes are prettier) but we all thought that since Kim was African American, she'd make a better Veronica. So I let her have it.
A couple of weeks ago, I was browsing the book and magazine section of the evil Wal-Mart with Raelynn, which is what we do because she loves to read more than I do. Now that I think about it, I loved to read a lot when I was her age too. I think it has to do with the fact that children didn't control the TV shows watched at my house growing up. Raelynn probably has the same problem.
Anyway, I saw a Betty and Veronica comic book and picked it up. Raelynn was very interested in it, probably because it had two fashionable and pretty girls on the front. I perused the issue and decided to buy it for her. (I made sure it was age appropriate.) She read that thing over and over and over. We looked through the issue to find out when the next issue was coming out and it was this past Monday. I went back to find it for her but it wasn't there. She was pretty sad.
But anyway, I'm glad I introduced her to the wonderful word of comics. There are many things I enjoyed as a kid that she's never experienced. I can remember the days of wax candy bottles, candy cigarettes, and orange sherbet push ups. I hope that in this crazy, fast-paced world, she and I can share some of life's simpler pleasures. Those are things we remember. That and the fact that Archie could never decide which girl he liked...all the while I was rooting for Veronica. Oh well, maybe next issue.....