Saturday, January 31, 2009

Southern Accents

Hubby is from the South. Oklahoma. Born in Texas.

He can't talk right.

I say that with tons of love. Honestly, I fell in love with him partly because of his accent. It was so cute and sweet and country.

As far as communication goes, we are fine when he is speaking in complete sentences. I am a teacher. I teach others about context clues. It goes a great way when you understand 90% of the words in a sentence. You can fill in the rest, usually.

But sometimes I still have to pretend I know what he is saying and to avoid argument I just say, Uh huh or Uhmm.

But let me take you back to the moment I realized it was even a problem.

I was working on my masters thesis. It was about spelling. (yes I know, a terrible topic and someday I might do a post on that whole topic)

I needed to retype this list of 300 frequently used words by 3rd graders. I am a quick typer. I can type while people talk pretty well. I knew if someone would read it to me, I would get done twice as fast. I asked him if he would and he, feeling sorry for me, agreed to help.

First off, the homonyms tripped me up, such as when/win (which I prounounce totally different but he doesn't)

But then there were words that just threw me for a loop and I knew they absolutely were NOT on the list of 3rd graders most frequently used words.

Off the top of my head right now I can't think of them. But I do remember it ended in a big fight and I did the remainder of the list myself. One might have been he said steal for still.

Then there are the phrases he says. They are really off the wall. And he has these phrases for EVERYTHING.

When it is raining hard - "Like a cow pissin on a flat rock."

When something is good - "Make you wanna stand up and slap your memaw"

Most of these have been passed down from his grandpa, who is long gone. But MY dad just can't even understand him half the time. He just gets this funny look on his face like hubby is speaking a different language. And really, he is.

But back to the accent.

Unfortunately after being married this long, I don't hear it so much now. Other people I know still can hear it, like my family. When he gets around his family it is more pronounced, but still not anything like I remember falling in love with. I just can't hear it and it makes me sad.

This past summer when we celebrated our anniversary, he surprised me by calling in to the radio station and requesting our wedding song to be played. They taped him. He was broadcast on the radio making the request. It was so sweet. But the most beautiful thing about it was that I HEARD his accent! Of course, I fell in love all over again!

But the fact remains, he still can't talk right. When I tell him this, he just calls me a Yankee.

Friday, January 30, 2009


(This is my pet tarantula, Annie)

My poor sister. She is such a mess. And it is all my fault (and when she reads this she will say it is all true.) Weena, this cannot be used in a court of law as admission to any guilt whatsoever :) (hehe)

She is afraid. Of a lot. And that is all my fault.

It started when we were little. We had bunk beds. I made my hand look as spider/tarantula like as possible and walked it down the wall our beds were pushed up to. I was sure to scare her.

But she bit me!

I screamed and something like the following conversation ensued.

"What's going on in there? You two better get to bed." (mom from the living room)

"AHHHHH" (me still screaming and crying)

The light flips on. "Well what's wrong?"(uh oh, mom's come in)

"Weena bit me." (me)

"Why?" (mom)

"Well, I was trying to scare her. And pretended I was a spider." (me)

"Well good for her." (mom)

"But why would you bite a humongous spider???" (me) I just KNEW my hand looked exactly like a spider coming down the wall

In the ensueing years, there were many more times I scared her. But the best/worst was just INSANE.

We were home alone (I was probably like 14 and she was 10). I had been downstairs/basement family room watching TV and she was up in mom and dad's room watching TV. It was night and mom and dad had to leave for a meeting. But she didn't know I had stayed home.

But I didn't know she didn't know I had stayed home. (which is important later in the story as I try to redeem myself)

So, as this was normal for us, I snuck upstairs. I waited and waited in the kitchen for her to come in for a snack. I probably waited a good 20 minutes just inside the kitchen from the hallway. (I didn't have anything else to do!)

Finally, here she comes. I knew it was going to be good.

Before she flipped the kitchen switch, I jumped out and yelled really loud "AHHHHHHHHH"

The poor thing collapsed!

So then I KNEW I was gonna get it cause I had just killed my sister.

Then she started screaming. (oh good, she was alive)

I had to let her know it was me so I just hugged her and said, "It's just me" over and over as she rocked and cried.

So there it is. I have ruined all scary movies and books for her. She hears noises in her house. And it is all my fault.

Maybe I could sneak over there one night outside . . . hehehe :) Nah, she might bite me.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Map Quest and other Driving Directions

- going in circles!

I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have gotten driving directions on line and they are sooooo wrong. But I probably don't have to tell you, because you already know.

Today I had to have bloodwork done. The place that I went to before (about 2 minutes from the house) is no longer there. So I had to search for the next closest place. Not too bad, only about 4 miles away.

We looked on the map. We had an idea where it was but neither remembered ever seeing it.

We studied and memorized the directions (both of us).

No lie, the directions they gave were so hilarious! We could have made a left turn into the strip mall. But no. At that point, they had us make a RIGHT turn, then a left, then another left till we were back on the same street going the other way!!!!! And then make a right into the strip mall. Are you kidding????

But not being exactly sure where it was, WE FOLLOWED THOSE STUPID DIRECTIONS!

And to make matters worse, when we pulled in, we didn't see it anywhere!

But we found it. Tucked into the corner.

I have my blood taken. (Thank goodness they didn't want to check my blood pressure. I am sure they didn't even need that little elastic tie around my arm.) Then the lady says something about a urine sample. I am quite surprised. What on earth are they gonna do with that? My cholesterol does not show up in my pee does it??? If so, does that mean I can pee it out???

Anyway, we took the short route home. We knew where we were going.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Favorite Books

Sorry, not a funny post this time. Although it does have its moments.

I have been thinking about doing a book post. The idea started when the librarian at school sent out an all school email asking for everyone's favorite book so she could make it into a list for the kids and summer reading suggestions. I thought I would make my own list of books in different categories. Unfortunately, I am not so good with remembering authors.

Keep in mind, I own all my favorites. Especially when you get to the end of the list.

Picture Books - "Happy Birthday to You" and "Oh, The Places You Will Go" both by Dr. Seuss, "The Mysteries of Harris Burdick" and "The Story of May" (The 2 Dr. Seuss books hold very special places in my heart. The both have written letters to me in them from my mom. The first one was when I was 5. The second is from when I graduated and was 30. No, not from high school)

Children's Books - "The Giver", "Charlotte's Web", "The Lightning Thief"

Favorite Young Adult series - "Among the Hidden" et all

Long Books for the summer that you read till the last 100 pages and then put down a bit because you don't ever want them to end - "Pillars of the Earth", "Scarlett"

Books that made me cry like a baby - "The Education of Little Tree", "Stone Fox" (don't even bother to put mascara on)

Best Series - The Gunslinger series by Stephen King, The Xanth series by Piers Anthony, and the Hobbit/Rings Series by Tolkein (The Xanth series is most amazing because of all the puns and plays on words.)

Most Informative Book I ever read - "My Backyard" by Douglas Waitley

Best Teaching Book - "The First Days of School" by Wong and "Educating Esme" (I read parts of the first days of school every year before I go back)

Most Inspiring Book - "Writing Toward Home" and all the Ralph Fletcher writing series

Best Love books - all the ones by Leo Buscaglia

Most Used Books - "The PDR Family Guide", "Home Remedies for Dogs and Cats", "Reef Fish Identification Guide"

Best Scuba Adventures - all the "Dirk Pitt" novels by Clive Cussler

Book Guaranteed to make me fall asleep every time - "The Wonders of Algae" and any book I currently have to read for a class

Yes, I have a book about algae. What on earth does that say about me???

So you have to share your guaranteed "sleeper" book. I am starting to get close to the end of the algae book.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Making You Smile! (for 40 years)

this is insane. check out the link above if you want a smile

HA HA HA talk about torture

sorry, doing this post on the mac and there is no button to make a link. you have to cut and paste

Winter Wackiness

I'm back to my normal self.

And wondering what to write about.

I told hubby that later around 5:15 to 5:30 we would pull up chairs to the big window out front and watch people try to make it up our street hill (with all the snow and ice out there)as they head home or head out to work. It just might prove to be the highlight of the day!

I went around an tromped about in the snow in the backyard. With my wedding dress. Taking pictures of it in the snow on the ground. I have a few that might work out okay (see above) but the sky was SO overcast today.

Here is the conversation I imagine took place as my neighbors watched out their back windows.

"Honey, come see this. You aren't going to believe it. What is she doing?"

"What IS she doing?"

"What's that she's got? Is that a dress? Is that a WEDDING dress?"

"Well, it looks like it. Kinda hard to tell with all the snow."

"It looks like she is taking pictures of it. Do you think she is taking pictures to sell it on ebay?"

"I don't know. That's the strangest thing. Why wouldn't she just do it inside? Like lay it out on the bed?"

"Look, she just threw it into the bushes. It's gonna get all snagged. I don't think she is trying to sell it."

"Well then what on earth is she doing?"

"Well, she was off today. Maybe she is doing drugs or drinking."

"Maybe she is mad, like angry. Or maybe mad, like crazy."

"She sure is weird. Now she threw it on the ground. I wonder if she will walk on it."

"No, doesn't look like it. She just keeps taking pictures."

"Maybe we should move."

"But they seem so harmless when we talk with them."

Monday, January 26, 2009

I'm Soo Happy (Ha)

There are quite a few things I would like to blog about tonight and I can't seem to pick just one. They all seem so equally important.

1. It's snowing tonight and it looks like it might be a doozy of a storm! Which means a possible snow day. But wait! Someone is scheduled to go to a technology conference tomorrow, already had a sub lined up, had to write lesson plans, and guess what? The conference IS NOT going to be cancelled. I just can't even believe my luck. But they did send an email stating to only go if we could go safely. It really might not be safe for any one to come in contact with me on a snow day that I have to work, so does that count????

On the brighter side of the storm, when I came into my neighborhood subdivision tonight (which was about 6pm 'cause I was at a class), it looked so clean and nice and beautiful. The main entrance road is a snow route. All cars were lined up neat and orderly in their driveways. And they all fit. Now why can't we have this neatness every day folks??? (yes, that was the bright side - I am pretty cranky tonight, which leads to other things, or stems from other things).

2. So I call my hubby today from work to make sure about when I have to go to the doctor. Of course he can't find the information/giant size paper. I tell him "Look in the bill bin." I know that it is there. He says he can't find it. I know it is there but I say, "Well, look NEXT to the bin. Maybe it got pushed out." I have been know to be wrong on occassion. "No, it's not there."

I said, "Well look on all the shelves where the bin is (six little ones, one for bread, one for a landline phone, one for the address book, 1 for the bill bin, 2 for decorations)." "Nope." (and these replies are coming as fast as I can explain where to look, so it REALLY doesn't seem like he is even looking. So I grit my teeth and say, "Did you look in the bill bin?" "Yes, " (very adamantly). "Well is it on the fridge under a magnet?" "NO" "Okay fine."

How hard is it to find a paper??? I figured I would find it when I got home and went ahead and scheduled the day off for when I suspected it was. (which will be number 3 in this list of grievances)

So, I call him as I leave work/school on my way to class. Of course he found it. It was da da da dah - in the bill bin. I guarantee if it would have had boobs, he would have seen it!

So he asks me how I'm doing. And I go in to rant #3 (see below). I finish and he is just silent. I said, "Well, you asked."

3. The process for getting a day off is quite odd. My contract has an unlimited number of sick days, with being out 5 days in a row requiring a doctor note of some kind. I have 3 personal days for what I choose to use them for. Honestly, I have never used all my personal days. Well, maybe one year. The most I have been off while sick has been 2 and that was a few years ago. I had 1 1/2 sick days so far this year (doctor appointments are considered sick days).

What I am trying to say is, I always go to work. Even when I really shouldn't because believe it or not, it is easier to come to school sick than to be sick and have to make sub plans from home and deal with the aftermath after you get back. Now that you have the background . . .

I grab this blue form and say to the secretary, "I don't really get the whole procedure of what to do first, but I put it in workforce (the official computer way they keep track) and I'm gonna fill out this sub request." Well, it just so happens that the "boss" was right there. He pipes up, "Well, you have to ask, then do workforce, then get the sub request." (Now realize, I had just gotten off the phone with hubby the first time when he couldn't find the paper, so I am not too keen on men at this moment.)

I said, "Ask??? I'm not asking. YOU have to work around the doctor." (I think he knew I was a little, well, hmm, upset?) Honestly, I am 40 years old, I work my ass off, and he's saying I gotta ASK to be off to go to the doctor?????? When I would much rather not even go???????? I just turned the form in. I had to get out before I exploded.

So this is where I am right now. I think I might have gotten you there so you know what's up. So, do YOU think it is safe for me to come in contact with others tomorrow? :) Maybe I should just wear a shirt that says BACK OFF or something of the sort. Lovely attire for a conference. Make a real good impression.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Calling Names

Hubby seems to think that names given at birth are just a suggestion of what to call the person. He has nicknames for everyone. Some people are lucky enough to have several. And in any given situation, you just might earn a new one.

Dad - Mark o

Mom - Pat o, two toes

Tina - sock lady

Brooke - yemon yegs, rotten

Ryan - pillsbury

Leroy - Banshee warrior pup, Leloy, HMFIC, Baby Leroy, Babytunda, Bug, Buddy, Ole Man, Chief of the Banshee warrior tribe, Old Booger, Mean Ole Codger

Me - Shorty, Princess, Baby Angel, Ballerina, Short, Short Megurt, Shorts, Morticia, Little Miss Incorrigible Shorty - there are countless more that I can't even think of.

So really, it is no wonder that I changed my name. At this point, I just might answer to anything.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Guitar Hero World Tour Here I Come!

Just got back from my sister's house. They have GHWT. How fun is this????!!!!

Playing the drums will get you in a sweat. The guitar is fun. And singing is just a blast.

So while all the adults were playing, I let my 3 1/2 year old niece take pictures! She is so funny. It's funny to see the world from her perspective! And while she hasn't got the whole thing down yet, she was able to get some good pictures of us playing instruments, which I won't put on here.

She also took other pics of her dad and baby bro, which really, with a smidge of cropping, are quite sweet.
Make sure to check out the expert drums Guitar Hero Everlong on Youtube. Watch the one with the split screen of the guy playing real drums and GH. Neat to watch. And the only way I will ever see the "expert" music to the end! lol

This has to be the all time most fun game ever. Music. Air instruments. It's like a party in a box!

Can't wait for that income tax return! And yes, my niece took both pictures :)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Having Gas

Sorry, there is no appropriate picture for this.

I am a teacher. I teach 4th grade. They are giggly at fourth grade. Sometimes they need to be reminded to be nice in fourth grade.

Today I had gas. E gad. No lie. Now, having gas is one thing. But for a teacher to have gas is quite another.

Imagine giving a presentation and having gas.
Now imagine giving a presentation while you are turned around with your bottom facing the audience.
Now imagine giving a presentation while you are turned around with your bottom facing the audience, who are a bunch of short people in short chairs.

See how bad it is?

At the beginning of the year, I have the fart talk with my kids. It's fun, it breaks the ice, and lets them know I am human. This is how the fart talk goes (I've done it for 10 years)-

"Okay folks. We need to talk about something. Raise your hand if you have never in your entire life had gas or burped. (no one does but they are all shocked and surprised and on the verge of giggling). See, everyone has done it. It is a natural part of life. We can't get around it. And sometimes it just comes out. And sometimes it comes out at a really bad time. Am I right? (I get lots of giggles and yeahs and nods)

Now I want you to remember one time when one came out and it was a really bad time. How did that make you feel? (sometimes someone will raise a hand and say embarrassed but sometimes not) You were embarrassed and maybe other people laughed at you, which made you feel worse, right? But could you help it? You didn't do it on purpose.

The thing is, it is a natural part of life. We all do it. And while we would hope no one would hear it, sometimes it just comes out and we can't help it.

Now in this class, we don't want anyone to feel bad. Especially for something that was an accident. SO, the rule in the class is this. If you have gas or burp, the most polite thing to do is say excuse me as loud as the fart or burp was. (This really gets them laughing because I said fart.) And the most polite thing for people around you to do is not laugh, because you couldn't help it."

Honestly, this has worked wonders in my class. I have to say it is one of my most favorite "discussions" at the beginning of the school year. Farts fly and burps are let out at really odd times, and we just keep going. No one dies of embarrassment.

Well, except for the teacher. :)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

I've Lost It

Having your husband bring the milk jug in to fill your glass while you blog, priceless.

Watching the glass slip out of his hand and bounce off your knee, pretty good laugh.

Yelling to him, "Catch it!" while he holds the milk jug and races down the stairs after it, way more than a giggle.

Hearing that tinkling "Crash I've Broken into Tiny Shards" sound, I'm rolling on the floor.

Losing that glass was so worth it.

wow I need to paint that post!

When Morning Meets Not Morning

Oh man. He whistles, all happy like, as he makes the coffee. He smiles. He says nice things. He comments on the weather. All within the first five minutes of opening his eyes.

In the meantime, I have pulled the blanket over my head and rolled over, hoping to get another 3 minutes of sleep. I smile at him with my eyes closed. When he says nice things, I grunt. (I try to make them sound nice). When he comments on the weather, I "uhm." I stumble to the shower with my eyes closed and no lights, hoping to down a drink of coffee before I get in.

Then there are the weekends. Blissful. I can sleep as long as I want. Unless he decides it is time for me to get up. Or he loads the dishwasher. Or he unloads the dishwasher. (Yes, I am very thankful he will even do these things, but that isn't the point right now.)

So I lay in bed waking up. If I smell coffee, I know I am okay to get up. I just might make it.

We meet at the kitchen table, to look outside, watch the birds, drink coffee. And then it starts.

Usually it starts with his ring on the coffee cup. Sometimes it's his fingers on the table. Sometimes it is the countertop. Sometimes it's his hand on the windowsill.

I have dubbed him, "The Morning Tapper." Tap tap tap tap tapttap tap tap." It used to drive me nuts. Till one morning I exploded, nicely. "Could you please stop doing that?"

We can joke about it now, but it still continues. Now all I have to say is, "Hey, morning tapper," thankfully, cause that is about all I can manage to get out.

Around 6pm, the whole scenario changes. I wake up, come alive, and am raring to go. He, on the other hand, is starting to wane. I guess I should start tapping then. But I won't because he IS the coffee maker! :)

My Secret

Okay. I guess it's time to tell. Yes, I can teleport myself.

See, the thing is, I have a 50 minute plan time every day. I can get the kids down to their special class (gym, music, art) and get back to my room immediately to have my entire 50 minutes. And then when time is up, I miraculously appear at the door without wasting any of my plan time walking.

My 30 minute lunch? Easy. I just teleport myself from dropping the kids off at their lunch straight to my lunch in the teacher lounge. Then when the 30 minutes are up, I teleport myself to the playground at the exact moment my 30 minutes are up, because the recess duty monitors are ready to come in.

All right. I guess you aren't buying it (well, at least I hope you aren't). It isn't true. I still have to walk like normal people. We have a sprawling building. Quite large, with not a lot of direct routes.

Herein lies the problem. I am supposed to have 30 minutes for lunch. But by the time all the kids get dropped off and I get to the teacher lunch room, 4 minutes have passed (that's if no one stops me to tell me anything). Then I have to wait in a line in the lunchroom to warm my food in the microwave. (yes, really) So, you figure another 4 minutes.

So MY lunch is supposed to start at exactly 11:55. So does the students' lunch. Mine really starts at 12:03 (if I don't go to the bathroom). At the end of the 30 minutes I have to be on the playground to take over (12:25).

This means that in order to arrive on time, I have to go drop off my lunch box in the room and pick up my coat (no, I cannot take my lunchbox to the playground - I would look like a dork standing there with it out on the playground). This process takes AT LEAST 5 minutes (or more when it is really cold out and I have to bundle up).

So cut another 5 minutes off my lunch time. That means that my "time to eat" is a MAXIMUM of 17 minutes. (If no one needs me to stop and talk about a student, I don't need to go to the bathroom, etc., which is really rare if it all goes as laid out in the above scenario.)

17 minutes is not long enough. That's insane!

Tomorrow try cutting your lunch time down to exactly 30 minutes. Just to give it a try.

If the upside to this was loosing weight, I probably wouldn't be so crazy about this. But from where I am, I don't see any upside at all.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Most Embarrassing

Well, I guess I am on a roll. Me being my silly normal self. And now, lucky you, are getting to hear all the gory and outrageous details.

I loved the idea of being a ballerina when I was little. I had all the dress up clothes that were my mom's real costumes from when SHE was little. We (my sister and I) had the white tunic/leotard with the rainbow tulle and the rainbow sequin trim on the end of it. We had the dark green tunic with the thin straps and green tulle with dark green sequins all over the front. We even had little ballet shoes.

I was prepared to grow up to be a ballerina. Except . . . 1, I never took classes and 2, I am clumsy.

Now this doesn't mean I didn't dance my heart out down in Mamaw's basement with the costumes on.

Fastforward many years. College. I can do anything I want. I can take anything I want. So I did. I was 19 years old when I took my very first ballet class. I had the required tights, shoes, and leotards and boy did I look cute in them (I never weighed over 95 pounds till I went to college). I went to the first class, and the second. It was just basic ballet and I actually did okay and was able to keep up. I went to the third and fourth class. Still okay.

But somewhere around the fifth class, I started to realize something. It wasn't that I didn't enjoy the class and the learning and it hadn't progressed to anything too difficult. What I realized was that it was EXTREMELY hard to get up at 7 am and put on tights and a leotard.

Yep, honestly, that deterred me. It was just too early to be doing things like that for me. Had the class been more like 10 or 2, I think I would have been fine. But it wasn't. And I stopped going to class. Well, except for the day of the final. I really did show up at the end of the semester. I don't know what I expected.

But the teacher, well, she did this routine, maybe three times, and we were supposed to do it in pairs. I watched from the sidelines and I am sure all the girls were hoping I wasn't going to be their partner. But they should have wanted me cause anything they would have done would have looked like a miracle compared to me out there stumbling around.

So I left. I really just walked out. Despite all this, it has never quelled my desire to dance around the house as a ballerina.

Fast forward a few more years. I somehow get ahold of my mom's old toe shoes. I like them and hang them on the wall. They travel with me from house to house.

Marriage. Divorce. Marriage. I still see them every day on the wall. Which all leads up to the most embarrassing title.

It was a beautiful day out in the yard a few years ago. And I love to dance ballet to Aerosmith (well, what I call it). It was summer. I was having fun (once again) and adding another cork to the collection. I ran in and grabbed the toe shoes.

I laced them up great and went out to the grassy area of the yard. I had plenty of room, great music and perfect weather. I danced and danced (or at least I am trying as much as a 35 year old can). And then I fell. Twisted my ankle. That would be me, Miss Grace!

Hubby rushed to me to help me up the stairs to the deck. As he was bending over, he glanced two houses up. There on the deck were all these really young guys quietly laughing. I can't help but wonder what they have nicknamed me. Obviously, it ranks way up there as most embarrassing. But I still have the shoes.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hiring Interview

This is a funny memory. It is real. It is (blush) mine.

I got hired at the last minute my very first year of teaching. It was one of those, well we need you and you need a job kind of things. I really didn't want to work there. They really didn't want me, but they knew me and so there it was. Basically, the principal and I didn't see eye to eye. I was actually on vacation when she called the house three times, then tried my second emergency number (my mom) (my first being my hubby's cell phone, who is with me). So mom drives an hour to my house wondering where I am (she didn't know that our plane had been delayed for 5 hours) and why I am not home yet.

Anyway, it was only a one year contract. I didn't get rehired. I packed up my stuff in June (into my husband's loaded down truck) and brought it all home. And spent the rest of the summer going crazy trying to find a job.

Well, God and my grandpa (who's up there with him) intervened. But they were just about 2 hours off schedule.

It's August 2, 1999. School starts back up in 3 weeks and I still don't have a job. I'm in a super panic, but trying to keep myself occupied and upbeat. It was summer.

I used Henna and did a very elaborate design from about mid calf to my big toe. It was beautiful and it took hours. Unfortunately, when the time came to wash the stain material off, you couldn't see it. I had spent hours and it was amazing. Imagine my disappointment. But, never being one to give up (and I had a glass of wine), I came up with a great idea of using permanent marker. At that time, they only made black. So, I redid the entire design on my leg all the way down to my foot in permanent marker. It really did look good. Not 20 minutes later, around 5pm, I got a phone call.

Did I want to come and interview for a position tomorrow on the third grade team at --------? Well sure I did! I said yes, I'd be there at noon, when they wanted me.

Now, first off, the very next day (interview day) was my grandpa's birthday. He had helped me out a couple times with money for classes when I was "on my own" and trying to get through college. He was a super huge supporter! And the school I was applying at (same district as the other), had the word CLAY in it. Which was my grandpa's last name.

I could see all the signs. And on top of everything else, my first year mentor had just be cycled back into the classroom and would be one of my teammates if I got the job! It just couldn't have been more perfect.

Well, except for the giant black tattoo like design all over my leg making me look like some crazy woman (you also have to remember that tattoos were not so "in" at that time).

I really didn't know what to do. It was running about 95* every day. But I knew I had to wear pants to cover this "mess." I had a light colored turquoise pant suit that was appropriate enough that would cover my leg. But shoes?? Most dress shoes show the top of your foot. Mine was covered in black in design.

So I ended up wearing really dark panty hose.

Needless to say, I sweat profusely that day. But the interview was amazing. Perfect. Just meant to be.

I have been there for the last ten years. It's a terrific place with terrific people. And some of them now know this story. Because I was finally able to laugh at myself about it and share it.

So you might ask, "Well, did you learn anything?"

Yep. Watch for help from above. And good people won't judge you when you wear dark pantyhose in the dead of summer and look like a dork. :) Oh yeah, and don't tell your mother-in-law how goofy you are cause she will buy you funny memorabilia so you never forget! (see picture)

But honestly, unless someone else had done this before, how did they know to even make such a funny thing?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Curing Boredom

Once again, I spent a good part of the evening on youtube. I started out looking for outrageous weddings and hubby out of the blue said, "Type in Bill Dance bloopers."

WOW! We were laughing so hard we were crying. We watched some of them over and over. I couldn't even breathe from laughing so hard. I won't go in to any details here so you can see them for yourself and get the full effect.

For those of you who don't know, Bill Dance is a guy with a TV show who fishes and gets paid to fish, endorse products, etc. This poor man. Poor, poor man. It's like watching perfect timing comedy. So if you are bored, go to youtube and search for Bill Dance bloopers. They will have you laughing in no time.
I love laughing. It makes you feel alive. And your whole body knows it.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Visits From Mom

She hasn't had a chance to visit much this past year. Dad's been sick a lot.

Being close, she can just come up for the day (or as long as her dog will hold pee), so it's nice.

A while back I started a notebook of funny things. Things I just didn't ever want to forget. I don't write in it anymore because I use this blog for that. I started collecting just in case I ever wanted to change professions and become a comedienne. :)

Before I posted today, I went and dug it out. There are some really good stories you are going to love.

Today's is from the first page. It involves my mom and her visits.


1. What's this?

2. Does this use batteries?

3. These are nice solid posts.

4. Is this the dog bed or the "doghouse" for him?

All of these have happened. My heart just stops for an instant and I think, "Oh crud."

But the first one was a picture or something benign.

The second one was a ball that lights up when it bounces that was the dog's.

The third one was just the bedposts.

And the last one was the dog bed, it was just rather large.

I'm sure you all can come up with some good ones too. The worst part was that every time one of these things was said, I was digging in a closet or drawer trying to find something and didn't see what she was talking about. Kind of makes you not want to turn around.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I'm It

Well, in my last photo blog post, I was "tagged." Since I have three blogs, I figure I can tag others from any of mine and preferred to do it here.

As part of the "rules" I have to post six random things about me. Which I find totally hilarious because my entire blog is about random things! So, this is right up my alley. I also made a random stitched picture to go with the post :)

Now of course, I can't think of 6 things. But I will sit here and try.

1. I have a thing for chairs, even though I rarely sit down. I am drawn to them and can't have enough of them. (actually this will be an entire post one day)

2. Our dog died in September. I still walk around the house at night and keep thinking I might trip on him (he was dark colored and tripped me many times on accident). How long will this last?

3. I have a massive collection of wine corks in glass containers. What should I do with them? I want to be creative - or learn how to make wine.

4. Last weekend we had a treat and rented a movie and got popcorn and soda. Real Coke. I drank three glasses full and felt like I had had a case of beer the next morning. Is it just because I never drink soda?

5. I have a small collection of "Snow Day" items (snow days are one of the best things about being in education). How long should I leave it all up?

6. Every year on Valentine's Day, we plant our lettuce seeds in the garden. I heard this "Wives Tale" and thought I would try it. It is amazing. Even if the ground is covered in snow, we plant. And the lettuce is absolutely terrific. We have done a wide variety and they all do well. I have one month to get the seeds :)

So those of you who got tagged, tag 6 people and post 6 random things about yourself. Make the world a little smaller :)


Friday, January 16, 2009

Karate Control

We spent most of the evening sparring last night.

Yes, I went. I made myself go.

I got to use my pink gear, which was the topic of conversation for a bit :) It was either pink or gold and I liked the pink better. I just can't get into wearing "boring."

So my sparring partner has been doing this since right before I left, so this is maybe his 3rd session. He is very gung ho.

What does gung ho really mean? Like in a literal translation?

Anyway, I found out control is not one of his strong points. He hit me right in the face twice. We aren't supposed to do face shots. Luckily he didn't slam me. But the next time I am partnered with him, I am wearing my head gear! Although I really should just get my dog gone hands up and it shouldn't even happen.

I ended up with no black eyes, mouses, or such. I looked fine today. But boy did I have a headache last night.

I enjoy the sparring part. I don't get angry but it gets out a lot of aggression. I pull all my punches. No solid hits. And if I get in the spot I am always saying, "Sorry." I'm a dork.

On an interesting side note, I store my gear in the car. Last night when Sensei announced we were sparring I threw my coat on to run get my stuff. The temperature was super cold (10). My stuff was frozen! Boy, had some of the girls not helped me work it out, it would have been like hitting with blocks of ice! I was worried they would split and crack the minute I hit anything. :) Funny!

I gotta work on blocking more. NOW I am angry :) Well, as angry as a pink sparring gear wearer can be!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Magazines, Guilt, and Overflowing Gardens

I get quite a few magazines in the mail. I love them. If I got more, it wouldn't bother me at all. I also regularly pick up dive magazines at the dive shop, so the collection is quite rounded. Hubby gets hunting magazines too.

While I love them, I can't stand them. I get one that sells stuff in the mail, like Harriet Carter or some such and I CANNOT THROW IT OUT WITHOUT LOOKING THROUGH IT! (I am the same with the circulars that come in the mail.) They sit there until I read them/browse them. It is absolutely impossible to throw one out without looking through it. What is this curse??

I have several baskets to store all these "treasures." I have 10 years worth of dive magazines that I just can't get rid of. I have 6 years worth of garden how to that I just can't bear to part with. I have really old Country Living and Better Homes and Gardens magazines that I just absolutely love. And those are just MY magazines!

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is lay out on the swing with a magazine in the warm sunshine.

The magazines that sell stuff end up in a special basket - in the bathroom. I can't tell you how many of these poor things are all ear marked up. I felt so guilty the week after Christmas as I was cleaning out the house. I had vowed that this year (2008) I would buy the things I had earmarked as perfect gifts. I never did. I pitched them all in the recycle bin.

And they do have really cool stuff that you just can't find in the stores. And they have good prices too. I just don't know why I never get a round to it. And I even have one of those little joke "roundtuits!" (I find them extremely funny.)

So the new round of magazines are starting to arrive. They are garden magazines filled with wonderful plants and gorgeous flowers and great prices. I HAVE ordered in the past (which is why I still keep getting them). The thing is, my gardens are so overflowing that last year when I literally gave away a station wagon full of plants to a girl at work, you couldn't even tell I had taken anything out.

Yet tonight I found myself earmarking pages with plants that I still want in the yard and have wanted in my garden. As I look out at the barren land in my yard, I can see spots or holes where I could put a plant. It's not till August that I feel like it is overwhelming and I live in a jungle.

I just can't seem get over the magazine curse.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I chose something from my list to blog about. Hubby was reading over my shoulder and said, "My Feet? What are you gonna write about your feet?"

He doesn't think I can do it. But I know I can write an entire blog about my feet. Without even taking off my socks and looking at them. The challenge is on!

I should start off by saying how much I hate them. I'm not a Peggy Hill with a size 13. In fact, I am the opposite. I wear a 6 1/2. I have short little stub toes. I can't stand it when my toe nails aren't painted. Talk about gross.

We have measured my little stub toes by comparison. My pinky finger is the length of my hubby's baby toe. Which means his little toe is bigger than my big toe. My baby toes are almost non-existent. They are so so little. And my toe nails, well, sometimes I just paint the skin to make it look like I have a toe nail on them. And the baby toes turn. The top is actually on the outside.

There's more. All my toes except the big ones have been broken at one point or another. Some more than once. A lot more. They are crooked and ugly and weird. I have said for the last 5 years that if I ever win the lottery, I am going to have my toes fixed. Nice pretty straight toes. Which I think would help them to be longer. The problem is I love to go barefoot. I feel free. All winter I only wear socks in the house. I am also clumsy and bang into things.

Look three paragraphs and I have only talked about toes!

I had a planter's wart on the bottom of my foot. I went religiously to the foot doctor for 6 months. They were trying to freeze it out. The planter's wart was painful and caused lots of extra skin on the ball of my foot. This extra skin even grew to the bottom of my fourth toe. I was a mess. After six months when it wasn't working, I went in for "surgery." OMG - don't do it!

Did you know that the bottom of your foot has tons more nerves than just about anywhere else? They told me that and I was like, yeah, ok, whatever. I walk on hot rocks barefoot all summer long. I break toes on a weekly basis. This is NOT going to phase ME!

HA HA! They stuck that needle between my two smallest toes to numb the bottom of my foot and I about came out of the chair! And that was just the first one. The second one was straight into the ball of my foot. I jerked (not good). After a few minutes I began to get a small amount of numb. Then he grabbed this tiny little ice cream scooper thing that was razor sharp - to scoop out the wart.

It was at that moment I lost it. That poor doctor. I am not proud of myself and was quite embarrassed. I know everyone in the lobby heard me. But I cussed him out quite good and extremely loud. It came out of nowhere. I'm fairly certain I said "CS" and "F" and lesser ones such as sob and such. It was a stream.

Well, being the type of man he was/is (extremely religious) he just couldn't even finish. He left and let the other doctor (a girl who had done all my freezing) finish. But by then the worst was over.

Oh, and another thing, your foot bleeds a ton. I had bandage 4 inches thick around my foot. No exaggeration. Ahh, on to better things . . . if you are even still reading.

So the last time we went to Jamaica I took lots of pics. When I got home, for some crazy reason, there were tons of pictures that I had taken of my own feet! (They have their own special page in the scrap book.) I don't know how it happened. And don't know why.

The only thing I can rationalize (because I hate them so much) is that I just wanted to remember where I was and what I did and my feet took me there.

Then there is the two toes story. A visitor came over to lounge in the pool. Hubby started making us fun summer drinks, as we just layed on the rafts relaxing. The visitor rarely drinks, and one would have been plenty. But it was warm, sunny, relaxing, and we had nothing else to do. Just one of those perfect lazy afternoons in summer.

When it came time for the visitor to get out, she had some difficulty with the ladder. And getting shoes on was just about near impossible. She ended up with her big toe AND her second toe being on one side of the flipflop, and it should only be the big toe. She did this with both feet. And didn't even realize it till we were walking up the stairs. We all laughed so hard we had to stop.

So I cheated a little. The last part wasn't about my feet. But is was about feet! And it is just too good of a story to pass up. So this year on 4th of July, we sent the visitor the picture above to make her smile. Go back and look at it again :) Two toes!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I Missed a Day!

well, you all knew I had to do it. My homework. So that's what I did last night. Sure does feel good to get something done on that major project.

Everyone is sick.

Hubby, mom, brother-in-law, sister, (poor Dad's been sick all year), and the niece and nephew, well they are always sick too.

I feel so bad for all them. And I am really amazed I haven't gotten any of it. It's the craziest thing! I have always been the one to get colds and strep. Being around the kids at school, or the germ breeding ground, it just comes with the territory.

I'm probably doing myself in for even talking about it. Where is the wood? Knock knock.

I don't envy the coughing - keeping yourself up all night, sore throat, nothing tastes good and you can't smell anything. Although I do have to say it has one benefit. After coughing for 4 weeks your stomache muscles are in way better shape!

I don't envy the runny nose - red around the edges from using so many tissues.

I don't envy the achy soreness - feel like if you move you might break and you are so run down that even getting into the shower is a massive chore that wears you out.

I don't envy the endless search for a medicine that will make you feel better.

So I am thankful and content, but only for myself. My family has my sympathies and wishes that they all get well very soon!

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Someone recently commented that my blog rambled about anything and everything. She meant it kindly. But it got me to thinking.

Every day my blog could be about ANYTHING! You just never know. So everyday when people visit it is just like getting a surprise.

I love surprises!

So I think this is working well for me.

Sometimes I get stumped and don't know what to write about. Sometimes I start out with one thing and end with another.

I thought I would make a post about possible posts I could do in the future, to help me on those days when I don't know what to say.

Here is my list (cause you know I am so fond of them):

1. Neighbors

2. Yardwork

3. Winter

4. Snowmen

5. Chairs
6. Shoes

7. Collections by Accident

8. Collections on Purpose

9. Music (I don't know why I haven't done more posts on this - I am really into music)

10. Memories

11. FUNNY Memories

12. Funny FAMILY Memories

13. My Feet

14. Work

15. Garages

16. Games

17. Spring

18. Valentine's Day

19. St. Patrick's Day

20. Spring Break

21. Home Projects

I think that list is long enough. Of course I want to write about all of them now. But I will let that be a surprise to myself when I choose one.

Some of my best surprises (that happened to me)

1. My hubby got me a car for graduation (I kinda knew but he told me the deal fell through - but it didn't)

2. I came home to a house all decorated inside for my birthday - more than once!

3. I came home to a live Christmas tree - twice!

4. I won a writing contest (yeah, me the rambler)

5. My camera

6. My sister's first baby was a girl (nobody knew til she was born, we kind of suspected with the second one)

7. My hubby dedicated a song on the radio to me on our anniversary

Feel free to comment on your best surprises!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Youtube Fun

I don't even remember how it all started. But somehow, last night, we ended up watching guitar players on youtube. Not just anyone. But the good ones.

It might have started with looking for Eddie Van Halen and his drill on Poundcake. I don't know how the subject came up but I didn't believe hubby. So he showed me. We found it and watched.

From there we went on to Jimmy Hendrix at Woodstock. Then Stevie Ray Vaughn. Then Kenny Wayne Sheppard. (comparing the different versions of Voodoo Child)

We watched a few others too. Ozzy's guy.

We also even watched one about Great Guitarists (all acoustic and they all seemed to be from other countries). It was beautiful. Completely different from the electric guitar but amazing musicians.

One of the things that was so wonderful was that we were able to find real live footage for all of them. It was nice and at this point, I want to thank all those who contribute to youtube for everyone else. Some of the footage is historic. Some of them have passed on and we will never have the opportunity to see them live in concert. What an amazing thing to think that we have that right at our fingertips for viewing whenever we want!!!

It was enjoyable and fun. And made us appreciate musical talent even more.

I would imagine that some of the stuff shot and put on youtube was done, well, without the artist permission. They shouldn't be upset though. No one is making any money off of it. It's just one more outlet to get others interested in their music. And it would be a great source for research as well.

Our own mini concert with OUR chosen artists at home. You can't beat that.

Friday, January 9, 2009


I like a good mystery. One that has clues to help you figure it out. One that has an answer at the end.

So here is my new mystery but it isn't good. There are no clues. There is no answer.

I was lucky enough to not have to venture out of the house but twice over my winter break from work. 12 days and only two outings. And one was going to my sister's for Christmas. That was the only day I wore my big long black coat.

On Wednesday I wore my big black coat to school. As I walking to recess putting my gloves on, I noticed something else in my pocket.

It was a set of keys. Lightweight. On a simple ring. 2. Exactly the same. Hexagonal top. Numbered (same number on both). Bright and shiny. New looking. (Or at least not used often.)

I had no clue what they were to. Or where they came from.

So I talked about the mystery at work on Thursday at lunch. Someone said maybe they were my sister's since that was the only place I had gone. It seemed unlikely, but she does has a mischeivious 3 year old :)

I called her on Thursday night. She said her husband was missing the lawnmower keys. But when I described them, they didn't sound right. I emailed her a picture of them. She also mentioned after that that maybe they were her shed keys. They have several sets of them around. (This still doesn't explain why they would be in MY coat pocket.)

Today she emailed her hubby the pic. He emailed me this evening and said they didn't look like anything he was looking for.

So what are they to? Where did they come from? Talk about a mystery. Of course MY hubby says that maybe someone slipped them into my pocket when I wasn't paying attention and they go to a bus station locker that is holding a chunk of money. (Too much movie watching :))

Any ideas anyone??

Thursday, January 8, 2009

13 Reasons

photo thanks to barunpatro @

I have thought of at LEASt THIRTEEN reasons not to go to karate class tonight. None of them are real. None of them are good. None of them are important.

But getting myself to go is like pure torture.

Which is silly because I know when I go I will enjoy myself. And it will make me feel good. Like I really did something.

So here are the reasons (in case anyone else is looking for an excuse :) in no particular order

1. It's cold out.

2. My feet will be cold in class.

3. My skin is really dry.

4. I need a pedicure.

5. I am super white pale.

6. I have more important things to do like homework (which I won't do anyway).

7. I shouldn't spend the money.

8. If I commit then I am obligated to go every week and I really don't want another commitment.

9. The timing of the class is all wrong and it messes with our eating habits.

10. I don't get to spend that time with hubby.

11. I am REALLY out of shape.

12. I don't remember any of the moves, katas, etc.

13. It is really gonna take a lot of energy and I think I might be getting sick.

14. I will be sore tomorrow.

15. Once a week of doing something isn't enough to get into shape.

16. There will be people I don't know there.

17. Am I going to look like a dork after taking a session off?

18. Where is my GI and is it ironed?

19. I don't have anything to wear.

20. It's THAT time of the month.

21. I could really use some rest.

22. It will be dark out.

23. Parking might be rough - the spots might be taken and I will have to walk far in the cold.

Wow. That's a lot more than 13. Look how good I did and how quickly I was able to come up with them. What does that mean??? I am lazy. I hate being lazy. I guess I will go.

Reasons to go

1. So I don't feel like I am lazy.

2. So I can wear a swimsuit this summer.

If I had a lot of money I could just go visit a lipo doctor once and be done with both reasons to go.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Did you know that fringe is what the English call bangs? I find that funny.

I am letting my bangs grow out. It isn't a pretty sight at the moment. Uncurled they come down to the tip of my nose. That's not bangs, that's nose hair. And I don't look especially cute with them pulled back in a headband. ick

So everyday I curl them up super tight with the hopes that they won't fall and blind me.

And I might also mention that they have major split ends. They look so fuzzy when I dry them it is unbelievable. They are pretty fringy.

Then there is this other area, "no man's land." It's at the side of my bangs on the edge of my face. I vaguely remember last summer deciding to make my bangs not so wide on my face and let the ends of the bangs grow out. This area is about 1/2" wide on either side of my "nose hairs." It is "ear hair." And it looks like I got something tangled in my hair and just ripped it out, it is in such bad condition.

I am only growing my bangs out for the summer (specifically scuba diving) so I can look halfway decent when I come out of the water with a ponytail. This is starting to feel like a really high price to pay to look "ok" after a dive. For the rest of the year I have to look like crap??

This is a precarious moment. I don't know if I can stick it out or if I should just forget it and cut them off. Maybe I should just trim them so they aren't so fringy? And what on earth do I do with that scraggly crap on the sides of my face?

I need hair people HELP! Advice would be great!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

White Shirts, Stains, and Tide Pens

I'm going to mesh two posts together. Well, maybe three. The first thought is the quest for the perfect white shirt. Second is food. And the third is, well, read on.

I probably have 30 white shirts. All in search of the perfect one. It needs to fit well, be comfortable, not stain under the arms, be washable and dryable, be either a scoop or v neck, cool and warm at the same time, and not patterned or mixed with other colors.

I am still looking. I am a sucker for white shirts. My newest closest to perfect white shirt is a short sleeve T by Ralph Lauren. It has lace inside the scoop neck. It fits well and is comfy.

Now why I have and want white shirts is beyond me. I can't wear white. Well, I can wear it but I can't keep it clean. Take for example today. I was wearing a white ribbed turtleneck. And carrying a stack of papers. With a lunch tray of pizza on top.

I didn't trip, fall or spill. But it still ended up all over me as it wedged up underneath my, well, you know. (Truly not the best place to get a spot while you are at work.)

This is nothing new. That is why I own 4 Tide pens. Everyone knows at work if they get a spot, come to me cause I have a pen to fix it. I keep one in my desk, one in my purse, one in my car, and then I have an extra here at home.

I like them. They work. I am messy. But they STINK! like baby puke. So it is always a real dilema. Do I want to stink or be unstained? I usually opt for the stink. If I walk fast enough, people will think it is someone else or it came from somewhere else. If I am stained, they know it is on me.

I am regularly doing the following: eating a hotdog with mustard and it goes all over me (wearing a white shirt), eating a sandwich of bologna and overspilling ketchup onto me (and my white shirt), eating BBQ and dripping BBQ sauce down the front (of my white shirt).

This past spring when I came home with white pants my hubby couldn't even believe it. He said, "That isn't going to last." He knows me so well.

As a side note, I refuse to eat in my gi. (white karate outfit) I also have a white bikini and a white summer suit. I love them both too. But the wearing of them also comes with major restrictions.

So I love wearing white, but can't find the perfect shirt. Maybe because they haven't made a stain-resistant one. Or an unstinky Tide pen.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Favorite Foods

We are sitting here talking about dinner. We will be having leftover fried chicken. Normally, I am not a big fan of leftovers. I rarely will eat leftover meat, unless it is turkey or chicken! But cold fried chicken??? Oh yeah!

For Thanksgiving I made a turkey with everything just for the two of us. We ate turkey for an entire week. Turkey sandwiches with pickles and mayo. Turkey pot pie. Turkey smothered in gravy. Good stuff!

Here is a list of foods I love in no particular order (made at home - eating out would be a completely different list):

deviled eggs, chocolate cake with chocolate icing and sprinkles, bologna sandwiches with ketchup, a nice TBone on the grill or filet mignon, mashed potatoes, baby new potatoes (homegrown are the best), snap peas(homegrown and eaten in the garden), rice crackers, rye bread, any bread with sesame seeds, Hawaiian rolls, fried chicken, deer tenderloin, mushrooms in butter and wine sauce, artichoke hearts, cucumbers, zuchinni bread with chocolate chips, braunschwegger (sp?) with mustard sandwich, hot dogs with bbq sauce, iced pickles, stuffed green peppers, corned beef (with cabbage), porcupine balls, King Ranch casserole, green bean casserole, macaroni salad, mac and cheese

If I had to eat any of these for the rest of my life, everyday, I would be happy (and huge!)

I have to stop. Dinner isn't for a while. :)

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Fun is Coming

I was reminded yesterday by a very dear old friend that Spring is only 8 to 10 weeks away. When you put it like that, I can make it. She is just kind of special that way and has a very positive outlook on life and is just sort of a real-life Pollyanna. Upon first meeting her my hubby thought she was a phony fake but after he got to know her, he just was amazed at how nice and sweet she genuinely is.

But anyway . . .

I have meaning to blog about this subject for awhile. I LOVE carnivals and fairs. Big time. A lot. A whole bunch. I don't know why, and I don't have anything particular.

I like the rides because I truly feel you are putting you life in peril when you ride them.

I like the food, especially the smell of popcorn and the taste of funnel cakes.

I like the sound of people screaming in the wind, loud merry go round music, and carnies barking at you to come play their game.

I like the dirt and gravel you walk on and you come home and your feet are all dusty in the shoes.

And of course, I like the weather. Spring and summer. Warm, hot. Makes you feel good when you eat a snowcone.

Spring is coming and so are the fairs :)

My favorite game is the shooting one. The one with the little bebees and the crooked barrel air gun. You have to shoot the red star out of the little paper hanging on the end of the pulley. It reminds of a real shooting range, like in Lethal Weapon. I feel like I HAVE a lethal weapon - and I feel like Mel Gibson when I am shooting - you know he was a crack shot!

So maybe 4 or 5 years ago, we went to the local fair. I was so excited. And they had my shooting game. I must have spent at least $10 at that game (hubby always limits me). But I thought I got it on the last one. I started jumping up and down. And yelling I had won. You would have thought it was the lottery.

The attendant pulled the paper up. And promptly told me, "Nope. Didn't get it." I was floored. He must have had red paint on his finger or something and wiped it on there as he was looking. I got it and took a look. It was smaller than a pin head. I couldn't even hardly see it. (I really don't think he could either.)

Well, I kept the paper anyway. It is in the mirror of my vanity. I look at it every day. And I still can't believe it.

This past summer we were joking around and giving each other "redneck" lines. But I had the best. "You might be a redneck if you decorate your room with the shot out stars from the carnival game."

Well, maybe. I prefer to think of myself as Annie Oakley though.

Just the other day I took it out to clean the mirror. Hubby saw me and said, "Just let it go." But I just put it back in the mirror when I was done.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I will do ANYTHING . . .

to get out of doing what I need to do. Sometimes.
I am so good at making up reasons not to do my homework. MY students could take lessons from me.

I have to ________________. Fill in the blank. With anything, such as enjoy the sun while it is out because we won't have many days like this. Clean the closet because I just can't stand it anymore. Sort my pictures because I just can't find what I need when I need it. Clean my computer out.

I told myself I would do homework today. I am trying to do the National Board thing. It isn't going well. I can't seem to motivate myself. Even the extra pay earned (if I get it) isn't enough incentive.

And it is one of those things I can't back out of. The state and my school district have funded me. They expect returns. Or at least an effort to try.

The questions are confusing. And tedious. And to me, they ask the same thing over and over and over, just in different ways.

The rules are ridiculous. When I video tape, I have to students in groups of 3. I prefer partners. Groups of three doesn't work for me. I don't have equal amounts. Someone always seems to be left out the conversation.

I am ranting and venting. I don't want to do homework now. I just can't get my head around it. But I don't want to procrastinate either. So I came here and blogged about it all. Not that it seems to be helping. But, as I said, I am good at coming up with other things to do.

I think I will go out and wash off the air conditioner in preparation for this coming summer. I don't want to procrastinate :)

Friday, January 2, 2009

I'm Beat

One of the more unique glass Santas in my collection. Santa snorkeling!

I just finished putting all the Christmas stuff away. There are 2 trees and 10 Rubbermaid boxes. No I am not exaggerating. And I went light this year. (We left about 6 boxes up in the garage attic.)

At the very start, before I even did anything, I noticed my back was hurting pretty bad. I don't know what I did. Moved funny somehow. So I was moving kind of slow most of the day.

I got to wandering, as my mind will do. It's funny how we cherish special ornaments. I couldn't pick one favorite. I have so many special ones. There are the ones we got on our trips to Jamaica. The one from our Spring Break trip to Florida to see the manatees. The special ones from my family. The ones I made when I was little. The ones that were my dog's (it was our first Christmas without him and it was hard - he would have been 10 yesterday - it was his birthday). The old, irreplaceable ones that were my Mamaw and Papaw's and my family when I was little. Gifts from students.

As a side note, we had Thanksgiving at my sister's this year. We volunteered to help her put up the tree and such then. It was much more fun as a group and neat because I knew where almost all HER ornaments came from. And of course, which I really couldn't even believe, she had to bring up the ornament I broke when I was 8 years old. It's funny cause every year I have true guilt and regret about that ornament. It was our favorite and it was old even then. It had a sleigh scene in winter with a horse and everything and it was bright purple. Years later, I painted one on dark blue to try and replace that ornament and gave it to my mom and dad. It never has replaced the other one.

And then on the upstairs tree are all the Santa ornaments. Glass Santas for almost every year since 1989, plus others. Some big, some little. Some others from before 1989 that were given to me as gifts when I was younger, or handmade. All Santas go on that tree.

I had to laugh at myself. I really enjoy putting up and taking down the decorations because I really get to cherish each one individually. It's probably the most special time when it comes to ornaments and decorations. No one else really notices or cares about your things the way you do.

So, where I am going with all this? Well, remember I said I was moving a bit slow today. I guess it was dragging on a while and hubby thought he might pitch in and help. I had already finished upstairs and was working on the big tree downstairs.

He said he would help.

He started yanking ornaments off the tree in any old order. He had a handful and asked where I wanted them.

I patiently explained to him that I didn't have half of those ornament boxes ready. (They all go in specific boxes. And the absolutely cannot be all mixed up, cause some won't fit and then it will be a mess.) There are all the flat ornaments, wooden and other, that go in a large box because they can't be damaged. There are the giant old ones that only fit in one box, etc, etc.

I had to find specific ornaments he could hunt for after I had gotten the box out. I don't know if I went faster or not, but it made my back not hurt so much.

So, we are done. All packed and ready to go in the garage attic, which I really couldn't tackle tonight. Too much lifting and ladder climbing.

But I sure did enjoy my ornaments.

Buying Bathroom Fixtures

Warning - this is a super long post/story! :)

Aye yi yi. Well I repainted the bathroom. It was looking old and tired and I already had the paint picked out for months. It was a calming, soothing tanzanite color. Gorgeous. Reminds me of a sunset (which is why I picked it.) But the painting the other day was the easy part.

I wanted new fixtures. The old ones are brass and outdated. And staring to look, well, old. I had new knobs left over from when I had redone the kitchen cabinets, so that was about the only thing I didn't need. Oh, and shower/tub fixtures. (We had a leak a while back and had to gut the wall in the shower and went with the silver.)

I also wanted to have two towel racks. We have plenty of wall space and I don't know how the previous family of four survived with only one towel rack. It just didn't work for us and maybe after ten years, we aren't so good at sharing some things. :)

So being the good doobie that I am, I thought I would check around some of my favorite home decorating haunts to try to find a good deal. Well forget that! It took me four hours to realize that there are NO GOOD DEALS when it comes to bathroom fixtures. They had towel racks that were $80 a piece. Are you kidding me??? Even the cheapest ugly old white plastic ones that require no screws and last about 5 minutes were like $10 a piece. Needless to say, I was shocked.

So I ended up at Home Depot. I knew the selection would be good and if I had to I would just go plain silver. Hopefully they would have a set/collection that I could get everything in one box. Well, that didn't work either. Their idea of a set is a towel rack, a robe hook (what am I gonna do with that??) a toilet roll holder and a ring. None of them had two towel racks. Are we a society where we only use ONE towel rack in the bathroom? What was going on?

I was just about to come up empty handed. The ones I liked were outrageous and I wasn't going to pay what they wanted for the crappy ones I didn't like. And then I found it. It was an entire set with all the above mentioned PLUS the faucet AND the drain for the sink!!! And it was brushed nickel! And it was, da da da duh --- $40! That meant I only had to buy one extra towel rack! I could do this!

But alas, of course, they didn't have that exact style in single towel bars of any size. So I found one that kind of matches, and only a few people I know will actually notice that it doesn't match - like my Aunt Judy, who paints her garage because there are marks on the wall. (As a side note, the only painting my garage has ever seen is a 2 foot square in bright purple on the wall that says "Happy Birthday" that I did for my husband when I was cleaning out a paint brush.)

So, I bring it all home. You would think that is the end of the story. But the craziness was only beginning.

I opened it. And then I took out the springy toilet paper roll rod because I wanted to put that up first and needed to see which posts it used. It fit in any of them so it didn't matter. Then I got to looking at the directions. They wanted me to screw through a place where there was no hole on the post. And then I realized you had to pop the end little button things off. But I have to tell you, these were very poor directions. Extremely poor directions. I guess they make them for people who don't READ directions.

I figured out I needed to drill three holes for each post. Through the HARD oak vanity wall. Well, first I had to FIND the drill which required a call to my husband up in a deer tree stand trying to explain where the drill was.

So I begin my drilling (I am pretty handy with tools, which is probably why he hides them. It's nothing for me to break out the circular saw or something similar since I grew up with a very crafty dad who had no boys.) But those darn directions didn't say if the center screw should go all the way through, and there was no nut or anything and it was a flat bottom screw. On the first set, I went all the way, and on the second, I didn't.

That turned out to be a huge mistake. I got the first post done with only slight confusion (of course having measured and such). The second set, I got the top and bottom screw in ok. The center screw, which goes on through the post, just about did me in. It got almost all the way in and I stripped the dog gone thing. (Dog gone used here is extremely mild compared to what I was saying.) So it's stuck, not on, but I can't get it off.

At this point, furious was an understatement. I tried yanking and jerking. I'm sweating. I can't return it cause I can't get it out. I drilled through the back side of the vanity to try to get to it. I was real close to taking a hammer to it. And then I put the drill bit back in and just drilled the SOBing screw where it had stripped. AND IT WENT IN!!! (Heaven knows it is never coming out, but it went in!)

Now all I have to do is put the springy rod on and I will have TOILET PAPER!! :) Ha ha

I couldn't find the springy rod. Anywhere. I searched for 30 minutes. I went to the garage. I checked the trash. I was flipping out.

Okay, so skip that. It will turn up. (Mind you this was the very first thing I pulled out of the box.)

Since that had been such a chore, I decided to try the single rod I hade purchased. It was a completely different type of installation. It was more like my old ones, where you put the bracket on the wall then screw the post on from the underside. Okay. But of course, I couldn't find a level to save my life. (Hidden again??) It ended up being a smidge off (I have a pretty good eye) and once again, only Aunt Judy (and maybe my mom since she is pretty symmetrical) will notice.

Then it was on to the ring for handtowels/wash cloth, whatever. One post. Straight in. But I had to use those stupid little plastic inserts and my drilled whole wasn't big enough. I tried hammering it in but the thing broke off. With part in the wall. So what did I do?? I am beginning to LOVE the drill bit. Finally, piece number three is up. It has only been four hours. I thought I would be completely done in like 30 minutes! I was beginning to wonder if I would be done before my hubby got home from hunting.

Finally, the last towel rack (forget that dumb robe hook - it is so not worth it). By this time, I was working like a well oiled machine that new what I was doing!! :) It went up pretty quick, and the level worked great and the plastic inserts went in easily.

For the next 3 hours I proceeded to tear the house apart looking for the toilet paper rod. Finally, having no luck, I needed a drink.

The next day as my three year old niece visited, she wondered, "Aunt Daisy, why don't you have one of those things here for the toilet paper? Does the toilet paper just hang here on the rod?" I grimaced.

It wasn't until New Year's Eve DAY that I found it. It had fallen down onto a chair on some files I had piled there. When I had checked the chair by tipping it back, the files had slid over it, wedging it against the back of the chair. I screamed, "I found it!" My hubby knew what I was talking about.

Notice I haven't mentioned the faucet. The last time we put in a new sink with a faucet it took three trips to the hardware store. We figured we better not start in on that on New Year's Eve because we have to turn the whole house water off for that particular sink and we didn't want to be stuck with no water over the holiday.

Hubby is putting the faucet now as I write this saga. I haven't heard a single cuss word. Things must be going a lot smoother for him.

Next time I redecorate the bathroom, I am going for the rustic, old-timey look. We will use big nails as towel racks and the toilet paper holder. Just like an outhouse.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year

"Happy New Year to, uh, who, Spike?" This was an actual line we heard on TV last night from one of the hosts. I am not sure which one; it might have been the one with Robbie Knievel jumping out in Vegas. Anyway, it doesn't matter which show. The fact that it was said just about had us peeing in our pants laughing. And then we rolled with it and hit it back and forth. "Yeah, that's perfect. Put a drunk host on on New Year's Eve." and "Uh, who am I again?" and "Am I on the air live? Is anyone gonna see this?"

We had a great New Year's Eve. Lots of fun. Banging of pots and pans. We lit sparklers in the yard (it was freezing out!!!)

I started the year out right by sleeping till 9 and laying in bed for another hour just enjoying it.

It's bright and sunny out. My house is clean. My laundry is done. :)

So what am I going to do today??

I think I am just going to kick back and watch TV and play cards online.

I still need to take down the Christmas decorations. I still have a LOT of homework to do. I think I even have some grading to do. But that's just gonna have to wait. Today I am going to enjoy being off and practice relaxing:)