Friday, January 30, 2009


We went to Disneyland last weekend to celebrate Heather's birthday. She counted the number of people who wished her a happy birthday since she was wearing her official birthday pin. She counted 37. I think she lost count along the way because I'm certain it was more. Every cast member who saw her wished her a happy birthday.

I took a bunch of pictures. Greg took 38 million pictures. So over the next months weeks little while, I'll torture you share pictures and stories of our fantastic weekend.

I think this was, hands down, one of the best Disneyland trips we've taken. The girls got along so well. They held hands as we walked. They danced outside the shops (above). They picked each other for ride partners. Our sneakers were filled with rain and our hearts were filled with joy the entire time. 

one of these days

...this child will probably be furious with me...

because I've posted her silliness all over the internet.

It will likely happen as she enters those dreaded teen years. 

But, who can resist?

Besides ~ for now she thinks her parents are swell.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

goofing off

I haven't been around for a while because we've been hanging out with Goofy and his pals. 

More pictures and stories to come....

Monday, January 19, 2009

like a box of chocolates

Of all the crafting I do, Greg likes the painting projects the best. He says he gets the most satisfaction from looking at them. He says he likes seeing them displayed around the house.

It seems I will land on a craft area for a while and forsake the others. Painting has been forsaken for quite some time as I was rediscovering my love of sewing. Paper crafts usually sneak in there from time to time. 

It's time for me to spend some time with my paintbrushes for a little while.

Greg says this looks like a box of chocolates.

If you need it, it's in The Barn Door shop to the right.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

a new goal

Normally, I don't like to share the goals I set. I don't have a good track record of meeting my goals, so I don't like to advertise the disappointment. That's probably why people share goals ~ the whole idea of accountability.

In November I told you I had achieved my reading goal of 24 books for the year. By the end of the year, I reached 27 books. Now you know my goal for this year has to be higher, right? So I started thinking about what it should be. Three books a month seemed a little more than I could accomplish. I don't get to sit home and read books while eating ice cream all day.

While pondering my goal, it occurred to me that I should share this goal with my students. I'm always looking for a new way to pimp encourage reading. If they know that I have a goal, maybe they'll be receptive to a goal themselves. I took it to the kids and told them that I was deciding between two goals for 2009 ~ 30 books or 32 books. I let them pick. You know what happened. My book reading goal for 2009 is 32 books. That's ok, small people, I'll remember your lofty expectations of me while I'm helping you set your reading goals!

Now ~ if you'll excuse me ~ I've got to go read.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

waiting for the turn around

It's been a week since I've posted. My family might be ready to disown me ~~ no snide comments, craft pictures, rants about teaching, or pictures of our adorable kids from me in an entire week! Can you believe the audacity? 

This might be the reason ~~ remember these? 

No? Check out the story of them here. I'll wait. 

Remember now? Um, yeah, I haven't put those shoes on since that day.

There's a group of gals at work who go walking after school Monday through Thursday. I can go Tuesday through Thursdays, so decided to join them two weeks ago. I knew the route they followed. I had walked a shorter version of that route before (three or four times). The route is not a piece of cake ~ but is achievable for me. I didn't know what sort of shock I was about to experience.

On my first day with the group I found out that another lady, Laura, was a rookie too. She was excited that she was not the only rookie. I still didn't get it. As the group sets off from the school Laura and I are immediately left in the dust of our principal and the rest of the group. Holy crap they walk fast! There was no keeping up unless we wanted to bust out into a brisk jog. I told Laura I was glad she came and she echoed my gratefulness. We settled for being slower and kept an eye on those in front of us. 

The first part of the walk is uphill, toward a mountain. As we watched the speed walkers I realized they didn't turn where I thought they were going to. They kept going ~ straight. up. hill! Laura said she thought they were going all the way to the mountain base. I told her no way, they'd turn soon. We kept following.

When we got to the street where I originally (and foolishly) thought they were turning, we kept going straight too. And going. Huffing. Puffing. UP HILL! At some point the make up of the air must have changed because I am certain I was breathing fire straight into my lungs. Must have been the altitude. Did I mention we were rookies? At this point if someone asked us if they jumped off a bridge would we follow? Well, apparently the answer to that would have been yes, because we followed them up that dang hill. Although by this time they had turned a corner and we could no longer actually see them.

Finally, we reached the turn. Guess where it was! Right! At the base of the mountain. I don't know why we didn't just climb the barrier and start climbing the mountain!

On legs of spaghetti, we turned the corner. As we turned the corner I looked at the handy dandy sport band and saw that we walked a solid mile up hill. The rest of the way is basically down hill.

At this point, our friends are no where in sight. The walk is basically a rectangle from the school. Laura and I kept walking. Now we could actually talk as we made our way back to school. We had a nice chat. Halfway through the last leg of the walk we see a group of people in front of us. For a brief, and silly, moment we think we have caught up with them. We then realize they are coming toward us. They had returned to school, got a drink, and come back out to find us. 

When I downloaded my sport band information I found out we walked 3 miles. We averaged a 22 minute mile. Not bad for the first time, I think. 

Laura and I have not walked the three miles since then. We turn the corner where I had originally thought they turned. It's still almost 2 miles. It's still hard to go up the hill. This week we even increased our route by going a little further up the hill before we cut over. We are still slower, but our times are getting better. We have accepted this. One day we might be able to keep up. We are very close to walking the whole 3-mile route again. Maybe next week.

You know how people say that exercise gives you more energy? But you have to have the energy to put forth the effort to exercise? Vicious circle. Well, this whole story is meant to say that I'm still waiting for the turn around of the energy. On the days I walk I just want to crawl in bed at about 6:30. I am mush. 

On the other hand, I am excited for the day when I reach my 100th mile. Thanks to the sport band, I'll know when that happens. And because I know you'll be on the edge of your seat until that time comes, I'll let you know as soon as it does.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

talk to me like that some more

This week I had a parent conference. This was a make up conference for one that was missed during conference week because of the snow day. This boy is a very sweet boy who can sometimes get in more than normal trouble for talking and such. This week he's not being very kind to his friends. He hit someone on Monday so I gave him lunch detention for the rest of the week. I'm not putting up with it. 

For some reason I got it in my head that the parents were a little upset when they asked on Wednesday if we could meet the very next day. Oh crap!

Turns out they just wanted their make up conference. They were very supportive. The subject of my strictness came up and they thanked me for that! The dad said I was leaving a legacy! A legacy? Wow. I was befuddled and speechless.

I certainly do not hear comments like that from parents very often. 

Friday, January 9, 2009

i might be lazy ... or maybe in a hurry

For Greg's work Christmas party I wore some cute, new peep toe shoes. I have had bare toe nails for a couple of months, so I slapped on some polish that afternoon. Not a professional pedicure quality job, but not sloppy either. 

Then this week I wore some boots that must have rubbed my big toes all the wrong ways because it rubbed half of the polish off.

In a rush to leave for work yesterday, I put on a pair of flats with a little more peep toe action goin' on. I look down and see two disgusting big toes peeping through with half the polish on. I considered putting knee-high nylons on and switching to a closed toe, but I didn't want to wear those shoes. 

So, I just pulled out the polish and painted those nasty big toenails with my shoes still on and gave them a shot of the blow dryer to speed up the drying. Then I ran out of the door.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

a new project

I have been asked to be part of a monthly card exchange. How fun is that! Each month we will make multiple copies of two styles of cards for the exchange. One is themed, the other is free choice.

This month's theme is Valentine's/love. So here's what I came up with. 

I put a white piece on the inside since the red is so dark. I thought it might be hard to write on such a dark color. Plus its another chance to stamp something and incorporate some additional interest.

This is my free choice card. I put the face of it on a blank white card, so I didn't have to add anything to the inside.

The exchange is tonight. I'm hoping the ladies like these cards. I'm excited to see what they have for the exchange as well. 

Monday, January 5, 2009

we now return to our regularly scheduled programming

Back to work today. Back to school. Back to the routine.

No more sleeping in. No more jammie days. Well ~ until the next track break!

I have roused the kids out of bed and sent them to my bed for the transitional wake up period. I can tell already this day is going to be tough for them. When we are on a break their schedule tends to fall to the wayside. I let them stay up late & sleep late. I can almost count on them falling asleep on the way to dance tonight!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

where were you dave?

Last night Greg and I went to his company holiday party. For the people running around like headless chickens before Christmas delivering boxes of joy and good tidings, January seems like a better time to have a holiday party. This is the first party we've been to. In previous years, one thing or another has happened and we haven't gone. 

Now, I really only know one of Greg's colleagues. I was kinda counting on that one person to be there. I'd feel a little more at ease walking into a room full of strangers if I knew two people ~ Greg plus the one person. 

That person was a no show. 

To bad that person missed an evening of my witty banter.

I did meet some new people. The food was delicious. The company was charming. There was even dancing by the Robinsons. A rather nice evening, indeed.

Where were you Dave?

Friday, January 2, 2009


I already have a book (it was kinda short) in my 2009 list. That's because we spent yesterday doing nothing but watching tons of movies (me alternately reading and watching), lounging on the couch, and generally being lazy. Greg had the day off and that's how he wanted to spend the day. Okay by me. 

Today ~ I have to do lesson plans and laundry. Monday we go back to school. My break is coming to a quick close here. 

another fabulous thing

Danny and Paulette got me this Smart Shopper list thingy (technical ~ I know) for Christmas.

It keeps track of your grocery list. To add items to the list, you just press the record button and speak clearly. You can change the quantity of items. If an item you purchase regularly is not already in the list, you can add it to the list bank. When you are ready to go to the store, just print your list and go. The list is separated into categories. Oh, and you can keep two lists at once. So I can have a grocery list and a Target list.

It has super strong magnets & hangs on the refrigerator. The display lights up while in use. It looks, from the display, that we eat lots of junk. That's not necessarily true. Dr. Pepper came already in the list of store items. Ahhh.

Greg and I have been looking for things to put on the list, elbowing each other out of the way for a chance to add something.

I used both lists while shopping this week. It was great!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

we're hard to keep up with

Happy New Year!

How did you spend your New Year's Eve? In a Christmas letter, a friend of mine said her family was going to brave Times Square. Wow!

That can hardly hold a candle to the rockin' time we had last night, though. I know you will be envious of our life of glamour and intrigue. Try to keep the jealousy to a minimum, please. 

We started off the evening with take out Chinese food. Although the food was fine, nobody thought it was as good as our Chinese food place. But that place is across town. We didn't want to be out driving on New Year's.

After dinner Greg snuggled in the bed with the kids for a little bit at about 8ish. AND. FELL. ASLEEP!

The kids and I watched our planned movie. We had popcorn with M & Ms. After the movie I let the kids watch their shows while I read. 

Heather fell asleep on the couch at 11:00.

At 11:30, I laid in Stephanie's lap and fell asleep a little bit.

At 11:50, Stephanie woke me up to count down the New Year's. Actually, I don't think she realized I was asleep.

Her loud countdown and the neighbor's fire crackers woke Greg up from his nap. 

We stayed up until about 1:30, watching t.v., reading, and goofing off. Heather never woke up.

Now, I dare you. Keep up with that. Don't hurt yourself trying!