April 29, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Pink, lovely and apparently delish

Please click to enlarge.

My lovely pink flowers that grow in my barrel. The puppy keeps snipping off their heads and eating them....so they usually just look like perky little stems. *sigh*

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

April 28, 2008

Old business

I am currently in the process of moving the entries from my old blog to here, so if you saw that I had a bazillion new posts today on bloglines and came here to see no new posts...except for this one....it's because they are all from Jan/Feb of 2005. You can find those months in my sidebar where it says 'archives' if you want to read them.

Have a great day!

April 24, 2008

Friday Feast #188

Name something you would categorize as weird.

The fashion trend of sagging. Today at our second grade field day games, one of the little boys in our class lost a relay race because his pants were falling down. We were screaming his name as a chant, as we did for the other kids in our class when they were in an event. But as soon as I saw that, my chant became, "Wear a belt, wear a belt, wear a belt!"

It is a pretty strictly enforced rule at our school not to wear sagging pants, but if the child has a huge shirt on over the pants, it can be hidden. *rolling my eyes at the very thought again*

What color was the last piece of food you ate?

Deep berry-ish pink. (raspberry sherbet....very delish)

On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how much do you enjoy being alone?

4 I really do not like being all alone. However I do enjoy being in a crowd or at a place like a mall or park and not knowing anyone. This way I'm not technically alone, but really I am. No one is talking to me and I do not have to be thinking of conversation or entertaining anyone. It would be really nice to be able to do this at my own home. I would be able to be at home with family members there, but they would not talk to me or ask me anything...and they would even prepare their own meals....just for one day. I think it would be SO relaxing and I would be able to really concentrate on things instead of my train of thought or activities being constantly interrupted and redirected.

Main Course
Fill in the blank: I will _________ vote for ___________ in _______.

I will resolutely vote for Pedro in 2008.

Describe your sleeping habits.

It is now 10:04pm and I am lying in my bed, on my side and my laptop is on my night stand. I'm typing away at a lame blog post so that people will come here. (see, it worked....*points at you*) Later, about 10:20, I will start playing Web Sudoku, thinking I will slip in a quick game before turning out the light. At approximately 11:40, I will realize how late it is, berate myself about cutting my sleep hours short again and close the computer. I will fall soundly asleep within about half an hour and awaken 2-3 times to plod my way to the bathroom, waking for the last time at 5am, at which time I will be mad because I only have an hour left to sleep and it will be hard then to get into a good sleep. (mostly because I'm mad) My wicked, wicked alarm will go off at 6:11am, I will sigh a big mourning morning sigh and plod to the bathroom to take a shower and begin my day.

***Go to Friday's Feast to learn more or to do your own spread.***

April 22, 2008


I got two letters in the mail today on my way to pick up Emma from school. They have been waiting to hear if they were chosen as missionaries for a local missions program for the summer. So when I picked up Emma, I handed her the envelope *the envelope, PLEASE.....drumroll* She is such a wimp. She didn't want to open it, saying she didn't think she got chosen. But after I forced her to do it, she started bouncing in her seat and saying, "I got it! I got it! I'm in!" Bethany got in too, but she did this last summer, so she was a shoe in.

Congrats to them!

I just wish that it didn't mean I will only have one child all summer. We'll miss them!

In other news, Hannah is doing very well with her new job, supervising visits with separated parents and children. She has gotten to like it after the initial shell-shock wore off. It is a very stressful job. She has to drive long distances with total strangers, keeping an eye on them at all times, she has to confront them and talk to them about things if they take advantage of the situation or are being sneaky, and she's has to take them wherever they want to go and walk around with them as they visit with their child in public places.

This is proving to be one of the hardest things about the job. The towns where she is working are small towns and she runs into people she knows or has known all the time, yet cannot tell them what she is doing. She says hi or a few words and then has to excuse herself and tell them she is working. That is a strange situation to be in. It is also *dreadfully* part of the job to not eat with the clients or leave their sides at any time. So that makes it hard on long visits......if you think about it. One of her visits is 5-6 hours without leaving their sides......for any reason....I think you know what I mean. That would disqualify me right away!

We are so proud of our girls....I just had to brag a bit.

April 21, 2008

A quilt and green enchiladas

It's feast or famine around here, I know. I get in the mood to write and post a bunch of things, then it's a week before I write again. Either life is quiet and uneventful or I am flying by the seat of my pants with busyness and don't have a minute to think for myself.

I'll just let you imagine which one it is now.

This afternoon I headed to Curves and then dropped by Bed, Bath and Beyond to see if their quilts were on sale. I have a gift card for that store and have been bedspread shopping around. I ended up finding one that was so cute, just right for Bethany's room (click to see it). So I got it and with my $25 gift card, I ended up only paying $18 for it after a significant discounted price! Yay bargain!

And Bethany loves it!

Green chili enchiladas

I only had a few minutes to whip up some green enchiladas, so I made up a short cut that worked fabuously!

The turkey meat was all ready in the fridge, so I caramelized some onions, added green chilies, the turkey and some Las Palmas green enchilada sauce and warmed it up.

*shortcut The thing I really despise about making enchiladas is putting the corn tortillas in hot oil, then having to fill it and roll it up while burning the skin off my fingertips! So I put my dozen corn tortillas in a bowl, slathered them with canola oil on both sides, then drained off excess oil. I warmed them up in the microwave for less than a minute. They were just the right temperature....not scalding, but warm and soft. (It sure beat dipping them one at a time into a pan of oil)

So keeping them in the bowl, I put a little cheese on the top tortilla then turkey mixture, then rolled them up (easily and not burning!) and put them in a baking dish. It went quickly!

Top them with more green sauce, then cheese and popped them in the microwave until they were bubbling and the cheese melted. They were quite delicious too.

April 15, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Hearts of stone

We found these in the creek during a recent visit to my sister's cabin, so we made them part of the rock border around the future garden.

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

April 14, 2008

Elementary my dear

I saw this on someone else's blog and was too curious....so I entered my blog address in the little window and clicked "send".

For about 3 seconds, it 'computed' my blog, then it gave me this result:

blog readability test

TV Reviews

I don't know if I'm okay with it.

But then I do mention second graders a lot.

Hey, stop laughing....you're the one reading it!

April 10, 2008

Haiku for you

It's time for
Mid-month Every Month at PENSIEVE
Want this button?

The challenge this month is to write a Haiku. Here is my effort.

Dark sky rains down white
Blanket of delicate flakes
Stills the earth....and me

Chariot of Change
Blow wind, do your work
Take the ice and chill with you
Usher in the Spring

Spring's End
Children skip home, free
Summer has released them...Whee!
Now mom's free days end


I've been a little concerned about a little boy in one of the classes I work in at school. He loves to draw, but his notebooks and journal were filled (FILLED) with drawings of vampires and demon-types of creatures, all with red and yellow eyes. I figured he played a lot of video games or watched weird cartoons. (remember this is a second grader) Then one day I was looking in his journal to find out if he had done his entry and I happened upon a list:

1. Go k*ll yourself
2. Go k*ss god
3. (can't remember what this was because I was in shock)

Yikes Mike! I told the teacher and I have no idea if she ever mentioned it to the mother, but we did tell him those were not appropriate and he was not allowed to draw or write things like that at school. I also prayed for him....and I think the teacher probably did too.

Fast forward two months. Suddenly he has drawings of the Bible with a cross on the front on his notebook. That was curious. I looked closely at it to make sure it didn't have a fire under it or a dagger sticking into it. It did not. It was just a sweet picture. Today in the cafeteria, he called me over. He asked me, "Do you know what this means?" He pointed to himself, then crossed his arms across his chest and then pointed to the ceiling. As I said this, all of the kids around him said it with me, "I love God!" He smiled with a huge grin.

I have to say it was the highlight of my year there.

I'm so glad he told me!

*The letter i deleted so no one finds me on a weird search.

April 9, 2008

Go ahead....make my day

As a discipline/reward method at our school, children begin each day with a certain number of points. Whenever they misbehave or mistreat, they lose points. If they lose more than 7 points in a day, they do not 'make their day'. The next morning, they will NOT have a Make Your Day slip on their desk (and a note is sent to parents telling them their child did not make their day). Then they can trade in these slips for little toys when they collect a few.

Today on the playground I turned to see two of my second graders holding on to a Kindergarten window ledge, jumping up and down to see into the window. I called them over and rebuked them for disturbing a class. I told them to each take off 2 points for interfering with a class. Here is the rest of the discussion:

Me: So each of you take 2 points off when you go back to class. Why were you looking into that class?

Boy 1: We wanted to see if they heard the rocks we threw up onto the roof!

Me: You were throwing ROCKS on the roof??

Boy 2: Yes, but not AT anyone. No one got hurt.

Me: Boys, rocks are not to be picked up at school....at ALL. If you throw them on the roof, they might break a window (their eyes bugged out). And if you throw them on the ground or at a tree, you might hit a person. (they looked at each other)

Boy 1: Well I"m going to take 5 points.

Boy 2: I'm taking 4.

Me: Well I'm telling you to each take 3 points or whatever your teacher tells you to take when you explain this to her.

Boy 1: I'll take 5.

Boy 2: OK, I'll take 4.

Then they ran off, happily discussing the points they were going to take.

April 6, 2008

....of sandwiches and men

We came home from church today with no kids. None. The teens stayed at church for pizza and game day. Maggie went to her cousin's house for the day. So after Charles and I took my mom home, we came home to an almost empty house....although here was a small, smiling dog waiting for us.

I had nothing ready to cook, so Charles suggested grilled cheese on the new bread we got yesterday at the Farm. There was a man selling fresh artisan breads on the walk into the restaurant area. He had such a soothing, gentle, eloquent way about him while selling the bread (he had actually made some of the loaves in we were admiring) that we talked about him and tried to describe him on the way home for a while. His appearance was that of a bread baker, but when he spoke, you could tell there was much more to him than baking bread. He was not necessarily highly educated (although that is quite possible nor was he putting on an act). He was very sincere....you could tell it was just his personality. It was more an attitude of relishing life and language. He said several phrases that I found unique at the time, but now I can't remember the words. He had a truly artistic way of thinking and speaking that showed his enjoyment in the people around him and the simple act of creating rustic, artisan loaves and selling them. I could have watched him interact with people for a long time.

We bought two rustic, wonderful looking loaves. One was cranberry/walnut, with huge chunks of fresh cranberries, not dried, and crunchy walnuts. The other loaf was a 9-grain rustic bread. We split the loaves with our friends who took us when we got to our house and sampled it a bit. Then I should have HID it! Some of the teens who were here yesterday ate some of it. I am not very generous or forgiving when I have certain things I think are special and being saved for a special time. Grrrrrr.

Oh yes, back to lunch. I cut slices of the loaves. Charles is unadventurous and had the 9-grain with regular American cheese (someone had eaten his Pepper Jack cheese he was looking forward to but he is way more forgiving than I am) and I had the cranberry/walnut bread with shredded cheddar cheese and a thin slice of cream cheese. Then I put them in the George Foreman grill and let it do it's George Foremanish magic! The only thing missing on my grilled cheese was a slice of bacon. It was delicious, but that would have put it over the top. Or another idea was to put a little more cream cheese and a slathering of strawberry or raspberry jam on it, then grill it. Maybe I'll have that for breakfast if there's time.

And now it's shaping up into a lazy, restful Sunday afternoon.

April 5, 2008

Periwinkle day

We had a busy day.

1. First we went to breakfast out at The Farm at South Mountain. It is a farm where they grown flowers, vegetables and fruits and they bake artisan breads and sell other goodies at a stand there. I wish I had taken some pictures. It was the cutest place....so green and rustic and quaint. If you click the link, you'll see some of the wonderful feasts for the eyes that we saw this morning. We ate at the Morning Glory Cafe. Thanks Ed and Cheryl for taking us.

2. The bathroom is painted! The pictures are below. It's all nice and periwinkle now. It looks a bit more purple in true light. The camera flash made it look more blue.

3. I talked to Hannah today. She had driven down to Sedona all by herself (half hour drive, but it's down a canyon on switchbacks) and she is doing lots better. She feels more prepared for what she'll see and not be so shell shocked in her new social work type of job. She comes tomorrow night and will be here til Thursday morning taking classes for her job and shadowing workers in the Phx area. (should be INteresting) So she was sitting at an outside table at a coffee place, sipping coffee, reading her current book (forgot to ask what it was) and probably getting a sunburn.

4. Softball.....all evening. We're beat..goodnight.

You get a little glimpse of Maggie in this on for free in the mirror.

April 4, 2008

Movie Review: Nim's Island

After a dry spell with very few desirable movies to choose from in theaters, I was excited to take Maggie, 10 and Charles, 48 (heehee) to see it. I had seen one commercial preview and heard only a couple of comments about it, but I knew we would like it.

We were not disappointed! Nim's Island is delightful....it is funny, sweet, innocent and a tear jerker in a few places. I think I had to pat Maggie three times.....so it's a three patter movie. But it is mostly full of laugh out loud moments. Some of the main characters are animals. The computer generated lizard will have you considering one as a pet. It's adorable! (just be reasonable...please remember it's just a CG lizard) And if, after that warning, you still want to get a lizard buddy, see my friend Michelle and her son Micah. They are raising some.

I won't do any spoiling. Just watch the preview. Then I suggest you go see it.

April 3, 2008

Second graders, dogs and daughters

Today was a normalish day. After the mad dash for showers and making lunches, we were off. It was picture day at school, so all the second graders came to school in their best clothes and hairdo's. They were spiffy....except for the children of forgetful mothers, who will be very sorry come picture previews when they see their children in stained t-shirts and floppy, askew hair. I did the best I could to primp some of them, but wow, some of them were pretty askew.

I was not one of the forgetful mothers, may I add! Maggie was very pretty with a side part and blown dry hair and a cute outfit!

Yay me!

There was also a pile up on the playground. Three girls came limping and holding their heads (all in very cute outfits, but hair askew) to ask me if they could go to the nurse. None of them were crying, so it was pretty funny and they were laughing too by the time they headed off to get ice packs. I wrote "We had a pile up out here." on the nurse's pass.

Ice packs are a miracle cure. And if you bite a little hole in the corner of it, they are also quite refreshing.

Then I went home. Someone had left my bedroom door open when they left for work (Bethany), so Maisy was sleeping in the middle of the pillows on my bed. I surprised her, so she was extra 'smiley'. She gets a lunatic grin on her face when she is anxious or overcome with joy. If people don't know her, they think she is snarling. But it really is a grin.

I was reminded of when we first got her and she was smiling at us. My daughter reminded me that I had once said that I wanted a dog who smiled at me. It was after seeing Because of Winn Dixie because that dog smiled too.

I think God arranges little things like that in our lives to see if we're paying attention....or maybe just to bless us.

And it is a blessing to come home to a dog who is crazy about you. It makes me laugh every day to see her smiling like a lunatic when I get home.

I also called my college daughter, Hannah, who had her first day on the new job yesterday. She 'shadowed' another worker there all day, a 12 hour day. She came home from work and went right to bed. Poor girl. It is a high turn-over type of job. She will be taking children to have supervised visits with parents they have been taken away from by CPS. She has to supervise the visit, take notes and then turn the notes in to the judge, who monitors the case. Highly stressful job, especially for a compassionate young woman. She loved working with the children, but the parents were stressing her out with their manipulation, emotional neediness and dysfunctional ways. Today she just had to go to a parenting class for an hour, so she is readying herself for another day of shadowing. Please pray for her. She really wants to do this.

I'm off to make the dinner now. Thanks for stopping by. =)

April 1, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Family portrait in shadows

Click photo to enlarge.

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

An internal crisis indeed

Working at an elementary school each day has given me a new, close up look at how our society is changing. It actually gives me the willies to think of the up and coming generation running our country in a few years. I know God will get a hold of people in this generation, but things like this scare the crud out of me.

We had to fill out a survey recently at work. Two of the questions were:

1. Do you feel your school is prepared for an external crisis? I imagine this means someone from off campus coming on to campus and making a ruckus. This almost happened once this year. A man the police were chasing through our neighborhood had jumped out of his crashed car and was just about to top the chain link fence (actually right by my 10 year old's classroom) when the policeman snagged him right off the fence. We were in lock down wondering what was going on for less than a half hour.

2. Do you feel your school is prepared in case of an internal crisis.

The only thought that will run through my mind now is 3rd graders plotting to torture and kill a teacher.