Sunday, December 28, 2008

Weekend Update

Well, it seems now that my schedule is becoming more free by the minute. The Eagles and whipping up on my Cowboys, so I won't really need to watch the playoffs. I would like to go out on a limb and suggest that one the quarterbacks for the upcoming Super Bowl will be Eli Manning. Why you ask would I make this particular prediction? Because my all-knowing son has for the past three years had the uncanny ability to ask for the jersey of a super bowl quarterback for a Christmas gift. This year he wanted Eli Manning. He was correct when he picked Big Ben (sorry I don't know how to spell his last name) from the Steelers, Peyton from the Colts, and last year Tom Brady. Maybe I should take the kid to Vegas!

Anyway I have been cleaning stuff up like a madwoman. Today Jonathon and I tackled the toy room in the basement and his room. Earlier this week I did the storage room in the basement and put up all the Christmas stuff I dug out to decorate. I need to clean out my pots and pans and the Rubbermaid cabinet so I can get my new pots and pans out. I try every year on my school vacations to clean out some drawers cabinets, etc just to keep up with the clutter and get rid of it. I keep a hand me down Rubbermaid in a little hidden from view place in the dining room. When I do laundry and I know something is too little I throw it in that Rubbermaid and when it is full I give the to the kid across the street aka BATMAN! (that's a whole other story). I also don't let Jonathon open any of the toys he gets in Happy Meals etc, I put them straight in a bag and take them to our neighbor who is a kindergarten teacher for her treasure chest.

And you will not believe it, but I actually stitched last night and only had to rip out one little bitty space. My goal is the have the Prairie Schooler Thanksgiving sampler finished before I go back to work next Friday. I look at all of these other stitching blogs and can not believe how much everyone else accomplishes and here I am like the snail coming along behind.

Have a wonderful week.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Fun and Merriment From Our House

Our yearly family photo taken before Christmas Eve Mass.

Jonathon and Santa talking over things.

Grandma giving Santa last minute orders at the parish covered dish dinner.

Decorating cookies for Christmas Eve.

Christmas Eve at Grandma's

Christmas morning at home.

My Husband....

gave me a Christmas gift that really surprised me and lifted my spirits this year! Here a picture of it, yes, my very own Mrs. Beasley doll!!!

I was always a big fan of the show Family Affair, I watched it religiously when I was a little girl. Once when Buffy and Jody got lost from Mr. French on a family vacation in Mexico and the show was continued until next week, I bawled and bawled!
One year my cousin Angie got a Mrs. Beasley doll for Christmas and I was so mad! Even though I was well past the age to play with dolls, she got this one and she didn't even watch the show! BTW she was the first person I called yesterday morning after I opened it. You know what she said??? "I don't even know what happened to my Mrs. Beasley doll." See she did not even appreciate what she had.

Anyway, last month in the Soap Opera Digest there was an ad for this doll on the back cover. Dan saw the magazine and knew I had loved Family Affair as a little girl and got it for me. My SIL's were really impressed that he paid that much attention to know I even wanted one. He also got me a heart necklace with a diamond in the middle and it was encrusted with little diamond chips around the outside, but I like the doll the best.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It Is Almost Here

Well, it won't be long now until Christmas has come and gone for another year. I do have 95% of the gifts I bought wrapped. I didn't do a lot of shopping this year. I just finally came to the conclusion that one I didn't have a lot of money to spend, and two my kid always gets so much half of the time he doesn't even comprehend who it came from, so I made a few calls to family and friends and said, "We love you, but we aren't giving you anything for Christmas, please reciprocate." Most of them were very happy to do so.

We always get something from our neighbors across the street, and I always bake up some Christmas type things and take to them. This year, however, she is in nursing school. This coming Sunday I am taking them dinner so that she won't have to worry about anything, but studying for finals. I called Mark last Saturday and told him--cleared the menu, made sure it was something they would actually eat. So when I come home from church on Sunday I will be making them lasagna, garlic bread, salad, and an ooey, gooey cake. That will be their Christmas present from us, and you know what?? That is one present I am actually excited to give, because I know they will enjoy it. It is simple and from the heart.

I did, however, fret all last Sunday that he thought I meant I would bring dinner over that day. By eight o'clock that evening I figured that he knew I meant this coming Sunday, either that or, they were over there starving and wondering what in the heck was taking me so long.

School is about to wind down for both Jonathon and I. I am a little miffed that I don't get off until 3 on the 23rd, but I guess that is the way the old cookie crumbles. Jonathon finally got his AR goal today, and we have a nine point book almost read for after Christmas. I have finished the Kansas State Writing Assessment with my kids. It went very smoothly this year. We spent two days in the computer lab typing and three days in class actually writing. I usually don't let this state testing get me all excited, they will either do well or they won't. Having a hysterical teacher won't change the end results, but from those I have glanced over they seemed to have really done well. They had four choices one of which was pick the "theme song of your life". Not many picked that prompt, but we had some funny class discussions matching songs to personalities. I must say they were quite surprised at the "cool" songs I knew, and the fact that I have an i-pod and those songs are on that i-pod.

I do have some special activities scheduled for them on Monday the 22nd. By the time I get to my sixth hour class they already know the assignment complete with page numbers through the grapevine. This year I have a different activity for each hour. I tried to gear the activity to the class taking into consideration things like can they get out of their seats without going bonkers etc. One class is doing a Christmas Carol Joust. I will throw out a word like say, "Santa" and they, as teams, must burst into song first with a carol containing that word. They don't know what we are doing yet. I did tell them they had to sing. One of them said they didn't sing very well. I told him that was okay. I said he had to sing, not sing well. Hopefully things will go okay that day.

Have a great Thursday.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Here are some pics of my house decorated for Christmas. Below are the Shepherd's Bush stockings I made for several people. I think I made approximately 20 in all. Now I really should be stitching some more because a lot of the youngers that I stitched them for are married and are starting families of their own. The Santas displayed on the table are from kits I bought from the Silver Needle a dew years ago. They were finished by a worker there, Mona. Each Santa is stitched using several speciality threads

This is one of the three trees I put up each year. This tree is Jonathon's. He has all of the ornaments that he has collected. We started with my buying him the Hallmark sports figures, then other people started giving him ornaments, so none the less it has turned into a hodge podge of dectorations. The tree topper for this tree is an angel he made in preschool with his hands for the wings and a toilet paper tube for the body.

This tree is my red and gold tree. It has assorted red ornaments and some gold ornamments that my mom got me from Danbury Mint, along with some ecru angels.

This is the big tree and it is decorated with snowmen. Every year my mom gets us all some little snowman ornament with our names on it. This tree has our bigger snowmen ornaments on it. I am thinking about getting a smaller tree to put all of the little ones on.

In addition to the decorating I did at my house Jonathon and I ran across the yard and put my mom's tree up and decorated it for her. Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are now playing elves for S. Claus to make your Christmas merry and bright.

Thanksgiving Day

Below are some Thanksgiving pictures. We had Dan's brother and his famiy over as well as my mom. The first photo is Dan filling his plate with all of the delicious calorie-laden food we had to eat. The second is Dan's brother, and the third is a photo of the rousing game of Apples to Apples that was played after lunch.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Turkey Trot and Other

This weekend our community had their annual Turkey Trot 5k run and 1 mile fun run. Jonathon and his friend Nicholas participated in the 1 mile fun run. Jonathon was second place in his age division and Nicholas was third. We had previously done another one of these in October of last year. Jonathon received second overall in his age division also.

It was about 20 degrees when the race started and it didn't warm up much past that by the time they were finally done. Although we haven't done these too often, Jonathon really wants to do a 5k next year, so we will probably let him try that to see how he likes it. This particular race was not very organized at all. It took them over an hour to tabulate the results, then most of them were wrong. They would call out a name as winner of their division and they would say "I didn't win, that person beat me." Hopefully next year that can work some of this out and things will go smoother. Although it would not have been nearly as bad if you didn't have to stand in the cold that long.

Next week Dan's brother and his family are coming over for Thanksgiving. I really don't look forward to the holidays in the having a big family dinner aspect of the holidays. The cooking isn't a problem. I just like to have extra people around because my mom eats with us on a daily basis, so it doesn't seem like a holiday dinner really unless we have some other company. Neither Dan nor I come from a family that tend to get together for the holidays.

I am most definitely ready for the days off of work, though. This year has really got me down. I don't know--it just seems that the morale of everyone there is low and getting lower. It also seems that a few bad apples are always ruining it for everyone else.

I have been doing a little bit of stitching here and there. Not much though. Mostly I have been reading in my spare time.

Hope you all have a great holiday and relaxing weekend.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I Can't Believe It is Almost....

Thanksgiving! My friend Alyson and I were talking about that this afternoon. It is so close to Thanksgiving that Tanner, our four-year-old all-knowing neighbor, talked to the Big Guy last night. That is right I went over to get change for a twenty this afternoon and got the full report. Santa Claus was in the Joplin, MO area checking for the good and bad kiddos. Tanner asked him for a Batmobile and a Batcave. Well, maybe I didn't get a full report as I could have, he was busy doing a dot to dot (with a paint brush). I told him the shirt he had on made his eyes look pretty, maybe some girl would want to be his girlfriend tonight at church. That idea didn't go over very well.

We had our end of season soccer tournament this past week. Jonathon was pumped his team got second place and a trophy! Usually at the end of each season they get a medal for playing, but this year in addition to the medal they got a trophy also. It is proudly displayed in his room right now.

Not only is time whipping by quickly these past two months, but in Jonathon's life as well. I can't believe that he is half-way through the fourth grade. I always take a day off work to do his parties at school. Another teacher was asking me about the latest party and we got to talking there are only five more school parties before he starts middle school! I know that sounds stupid, but I really don't want him to grow up.

I have the Christmas shopping started. I haven't really been happy about doing it this year though, I guess it is because the things Jonathon wants I find boring, and I don't really know what to get anyone else on my Christmas list. That kind of irritates me, because I always know what to get people on my list.

I went over to my mom's today and mowed/mulched all of her leaves. I am sort of to the point with her that she will never be satisfied. I took care of the leaves today, but tomorrow it will be something else. I can still taste the leaf dust, and I feel gritty after a shower.

Well, it is back upstairs to finish the laundry and get things underway for the next week. Since I started this entry by talking about Thanksgiving--I will add that I do have a lot to be thankful for and I should stop and realize that from time to time. Have a great week.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween Pictures

The first photo we have here is Young Indiana Jones cracking his whip.

These are our pumpkins that we carved. Jonathon has carved enough pumpkins in his day that he really only needs help to get the inside cleaned out and then he can go to town. He was pretty proud of these two. We got them from our friend JoAnne, who grew them in her garden this year, so that makes them even better. We were at her house one night when she and Mike were working in the garden, so Jonathon not only got to carve the pumpkins he got to help pick them.

Now that Halloween is over I officially started my Christmas shopping today. I got my big purchase made and started on a couple of the smaller ones. It won't be that long until Thanksgiving now. I have been picking up baking supplies here and there along for the holiday season.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

At Last A Day Off

Jonathon and I finally got our well-deserved Friday off from school this week. We took some time to venture to Tulsa for the day. Jonathon had a friend spend the night and so we headed out yesterday morning. We met some other people at Incredible Pizza, then did some shopping. We went to the normal places and before leaving town stopped by the Silver Needle. I didn't buy any stitchy stuff, but I did get myself a new Vera Bradley handbag. I don't know what style the bag is, but the pattern is Kensington. I got the color because I had matching accessories for it. Anyway, the three of us had a fun day together. I really like this little fellow that spent the night with us. He and Jonathon get along so well.

This past week has been the annual Neewollah week in the town where I teach. It is kind of a wild and crazy week for that small town. This year the kids were kind of wild and crazy at school. The kids got out of school at 2:25 Wednesday and the teachers had Friday off.

The weather here has been very fall like, in fact we are expecting a hard freeze tomorrow and Monday. I guess then it will be time for me to clean out the flower beds for this year and get the yard semi cleaned up before winter. Last week when it got so cool out, I kept thinking that it was certainly cool for the time of year, then it dawned on me that it was already the end of October. It seems when the school year begins September goes on and on, but once you get to October the year just starts to fly by, and that is what is happening this year.

Have a great weekend and week. We are heading off here in a little bit to go play soccer. Luckily this season we only had one early game. Since the weather has been pretty cool this week, we were lucky and got the noon game.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Stitching Pictures

This picture is my progress on the Prairie Schooler Thanksgiving Comes Again.
I am enjoying doing this as it is simple and goes by quickly. You can also see your progress as you stitch. I still have several more WIP's to finish and I am sure I will be getting back to them soon.

The above picture is the finished WWII plane that Jonathon wanted in his room. We picked it up a week or so ago at Hobby Lobby. As most of you stitchers can tell this is a Stoney Creek pattern. It used some tweeding, but not as much as their other patterns. It also had minimal backstitching, which was nice.

Have a great week, I hope most of you are enjoying the beautiful weather like we are having in Kansas.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Another One?

I was literally shocked tonight when I opened my e-mail. I got the latest prayer line request and found out that another former student has died. I have had about four of them in the last 20 years, but never this close together really. Zach was 22 and died from cancer of the liver. He was one of my fifth graders, actually in the last class I had at the Catholic school. I was pregnant with Jonathon the year I had him. We spent countless hours sitting side by side at my table doing math.
Please remember him and his family in your prayers.

As bad as things sometime seem for me I guess I need to take a look around and see all the things I have to be grateful for in my life.

Have a good week.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Another Day in the Life

Well, not much is happening here. I twisted my ankle pretty good and did quite a bit of stitching yesterday. I couldn't walk, therefore, I could not clean. I started the Prairie Schooler Thanksgiving design. Last weekend I worked on Lady Liberty, actually I took her to craft night at the church. Needless to say, cross-stitch is not a very good item to take to something like that. It is too hard to concentrate.

Work is going fine, if you could get over all drama. We have a testing schedule and one person decided that it interfered with another teacher's library schedule and sent a corrected copy to the test director. Not a good thing. Then when I asked if I could just know when to have my kids in the computer lab to test... she (the interfering teacher) sent out an e-mail to everyone preaching about getting along and working together. It was all I could do not to reply to all and tell her that we were all getting along and working together until she stuck her nose in it.

Okay enough for today. I only have 18 more days until a Friday off, then the next Friday is Halloween. Since I am the homeroom chairperson for Jon's class I will be home that Friday too. I have an "out of town appointment" that day-- Which really is the truth. I teach in one town and he goes to school in another, therefore, when I am homeroom parenting I am keeping an appointment in another town separate from the one in which I am employed. I am saving those two personal days I must use or lose for a time when I really feel the need to not be at work. Like the second week of May.
Have a wonderful week, even if you are testing with a messed up schedule.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

A Boy's Dream Come True Part II

Last Saturday as we sat through the soccer game (that ended after overtime) with a 0-0 tie we noticed all of these small planes flying around. Someone remarked that they were having their annual fly in at the airport. Jonathon and I buzzed out to the local small airport after the game to check out the planes they had participating. There were several little two seater planes. We went inside and they said that "Bill" was giving buddy rides. He was in a red plane. We were told to go out by the runway and when he came in for a landing to wave our arms and point to ourselves. He would stop and take Jon up for awhile. I know that sounds rather odd, but it worked. Bill came in for the landing and we flagged him down. He stopped and let the current passenger off and picked up Jonathon. They buckled in and I was told they would be back in 15 minutes. They flew over our little town. Jonathon got to see the third soccer game in progress from the air. The most exciting part though was Bill let him take over the controls. He has now been bitten by the flying bug big time. He wanted to know how old you had to be for flying lessons.

I am always catching grief for being too overprotective, nervous, or whatever else you could call it. It didn't hit me until I was sitting on a bench under a shade tree waiting for my only child to return what I had just done. I sent my kid off in an airplane with a stranger!!! But I must say in my defense I didn't panic at all or worry--- well, until minute 16 came and they weren't back yet. It was, however, a terrific thing for a nine year old to experience.

Last weekend we had the custom hot ride, this week we had a plane ride. What in the world will we do next weekend??? My friend Sara suggested Bungy Jumping.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A Boy's Dream Come True

Who would ever think they would get the chance to ride in a real, live, maybe, someday Hot Wheel? That is just what Jonathon and two of his buddies got to do on Sunday.
My friend Sara's BIL Ryan was one of the creators of this awesome car. When she told me about the car and the possibility that it could someday be made into a Hot Wheel I immediately thought of Jonathon's friend C, who collects Hot Wheels. I told her he would die to see the car, and Sara graciously promised that if Ryan ever brought the car this way she would snag them a ride. This past weekend was the time! You can tell by the pictures that they were enjoying the ride and notoriety of being one of the few in our area to get a ride. When they returned from their spin around town they said, "People just kept looking at us!" I thought it was pretty great of Ryan to just agree to pick up three kids he didn't even know and head off with them.

On the stitching front I did finish the airplane and will have a picture soon. When it has been properly ironed. The other picture is my stash from Tracy at Stitches 'n Stones. I have to say I was really honored to received so many nice things from her. I did start another project, it is the Prairie Schooler Thanksgiving design I bought several months ago.

Work is moving along. This week I am kind of excited, we took a test over our first grammar chapter and the kids did a super duper job. Even though grammar is probably the most boring thing in the world to learn.
Hope everyone has a great week!

Monday, September 8, 2008

I Could Go On and On...

about things that bug me, but for the sake of those who read I won't. I'll just go on a minor rampage.
1. The neighbor kid who won't go home. He was here about six hours yesterday. Finally I told him Jonathon had homework, so he went home for awhile. I used to think he was pretty neat until yesterday. He's here again today.

2. Adults who are tattletales. Why is it some people always thinks they have to be everyone else's moral compass? I hope you are as perfect as you want the rest of us to be. As one co-worker at my place said to another once... "You had better have hotpads on your feet because the bridges you burn today might need to be crossed tomorrow."

3. People who send political forwards in e-mails. Did it ever occur to you that my political views might not be the same as yours? Not only that, but did you verify all the facts in the emails you forward? Do you know what the word propaganda means? If not maybe you could sit in on my English class someday when I teach persuasive text and writing. Then maybe you can evaluate the source of these so called truthful emails.

Okay, so now I got that off my chest I can say that I read two books this weekend, but young adult literature. I am currently rereading Snow Falling On Cedars mainly because I enrolled myself as an AR student and challenged my students to try and beat me. It is worth 23 points and a pretty good book. I also am almost to the point of back stitching the airplane, and I received some cool stash stuff from Tracy at Stitches and Stones for a contest on her blog. I will add pictures sometime this week of that and hopefully a finished cross-stitch project.

Until then have a great week.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Happy Labor Day

Hello? Anyone out there? Blogging can sometimes certainly make you feel like you are talking to yourself. I hope all of you who labor outside the home are having a great, productive day off. And for those of you who labor within your home I hope that you are taking this day off. I know when you stay at home lots of people don't think you work, but in actuality you never get away from your job. I am having a relaxing day off, but I certainly wouldn't call it productive.

On the stitching front I am not getting a lot accomplished. I think it is because I am stitching things like cows and WWII planes, which I don't really enjoy. I thought of starting a new project, but then the thought of having all of this unfinished stuff around bothers and makes me nervous.

We actually have had a fairly busy weekend. My youngest BIL had his twentieth class reunion this weekend, so they stayed at our house Friday night, and we babysat for cousin Max. What a sharp little fellow that kid is, he talks in complete sentences with a huge vocabulary, counts from 10 - 0 nonstop and yells blast off! We certainly get a kick out of him visiting.

Saturday night we had to work bingo at our church. 119 people showed up to play bingo that night, which is a huge crowd for us. Bingo players have hollow legs I have decided. I work in the kitchen and we were so busy it was not even funny. We had two teenagers from the youth group helping out. Sometimes this is a double edged sword as their idea of working and our idea of working are two different things. The two we had there Saturday night worked their tails off.

Sunday and Monday we haven't done a lot just hung around done laundry, should be cleaning, but that dust has been there for awhile it can stay at little longer.
I have spent a lot of time today watching the Hurricane Gustav coverage keeping my fingers cross for all of those in his path.

Take care and have a wonderful week.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Not Much Going On

Well, not a lot is happening here in Kansas. Work is going well, just a one or two that can't seem to do what they are supposed to. Jonathon got started this week, so we are back to our weekly reading for AR and we are also hitting the flash cards pretty good. We have been doing that for some time now, and he is really starting to pick things up in the mulitplication facts department.

Today he had a friend and the neighbor kid playing with him. It wasn't too bad as they basically ran between our house and the neighbor's house for most of afternoon. I made them cupcakes, so the couple of passes they made through here consisted of wolfing down a dozen cupcakes between the three of them and several bottles of Gatorade.

Still not a lot on the stitching front. I tend to let other people dictate what I do and when I do it. Some day I am just going to put my foot down and say I am not doing anything but stitch. I did manage to read a novel during DEAR time this week. I finished it this morning on our ride home from Mass. I really never thought I would like the book as the movie previews didn't interest me, but "The Memory Keeper's Daughter" was a fairly good book. I think what made me think I wouldn't like is that I have a cousin who is Down's. I know when he was born we all got a crash course in Down's Syndrome. It was a total family effort and now he is a very high functioning adult. I guess living that part of the story was kind of a turn off for me. Most people don't realize the challenges that adults with Downs have, I mean my cousin is smart enough to know the things he is missing out on and thinks he can do everything anyone else his age can.. (like getting married and having a family), so I could relate all too well to that part of the book.
Anyway, I guess the real message that people could take away from the book, and I could certainly attest to is that people like my cousin and the girl in the book really add to your life and enrich it rather than being a burden.

I hope everyone has a great Monday. If you do I promise you can all have a three day weekend next week.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Two Days Down, 170 Some To Go

Well, the kids in our district came to school on Thursday. The first day wasn't too bad, the second day kinda of rolled along fine until sixth hour. My sixth hours are always a mess, I don't know why. Anyway, I think I will survive this year, after all only two weeks and then I have a vacation.

I haven't accomplished much in the stitching department here of late, but I have been busy. Monday night we went to the country music show at the Inter-State Fair and Rodeo. Miranda Lambert put on quite a show! We took Abby who boogied the night away. She tried to get my mom to give her a cigarette lighter to hold up. Grandma Patty definitely balked at that request. Then she begged Dan for his cell phone. The girl is definitely 8 going on something way too old. I also saw a former student's parent there. Sometimes getting a gander at the parents out in public always explains a lot, if you get my drift. Then Wednesday we went back for the first night of the rodeo. My opinion, you've seen one rodeo you've seen them all.

Yesterday was Friday. Last year after the double blood clot debacle Jonathon's birthday party was looming. He wanted to have a big sleepover, I wasn't really game for that at the time, but I promised a mini sleepover before school starts. Since it starts on Monday I guess I had run out of time and last night was the big night. Three friends came over after "Meet the Teacher" and we had a sleepover. I got up at 2 am to use the bathroom and two were awake and two were asleep. Dan was up at 3:30 and he said only one was awake. By nine all of them were awake and hungry again. They have really had fun and got along very well. They have also ate quite a little bit. Last night they ate two loaves of pepperoni bread, 1 pan of brownies, and drank lots of Gatorade. Once I went to bed from the looks of the trash can the real party started-- pudding cups galore, jello cups galore, a box of Little Debbie's. Little did they know, the jello and pudding were sugar free. Sometimes I have to remind myself of everything I have to be grateful and today it that I don't have three growing boys to feed all the time.

Anyway we are heading to Sonic here in a bit to eat (again) and then we are off to work bingo at our church. Sunday I plan to stitch.

Have a great Saturday.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Hi, Ho! Hi, Ho! It's Off To Work I Go

Well, tomorrow is the big day, the before school meetings start, and quite frankly I am ready to go back. Not exactly ready to face this new bunch I have heard so many not very nice things about, but ready for a schedule and something to do all day long. I am totally positive though that my new bunch will be like my last bunch and they will have grown up somewhat over the summer. Which leads me to my big pet peeve. When the teachers from last year all run up to you and say "oh you have such and such let me tell you about them!" Exspecially when the one doing it is juvenile and acts just like the kids and then can't figure out why they don't get along with them. Anyway, enough of that rant, last year I finally just said after the second time that no I didn't want to know it was a new year , and I had done this for 20 some years and thought I could handle it myself. At the time I didn't mean it to sound so grouchy and mean, but it certainly stopped the problem right away.

We finally solved the mysytery of the air conditioner quitting. The sump pump on the sewer lift station in our basement burnt out, that is what was causing the breaker to trip continually. Fortunately, hardly anyone uses the basement facilities so until it is fixed it shouldn't be a problem. At least that is what dear Dan is telling me and he better be right! So this week we have an electrician and a plumber coming. Thank goodness I am going back to work and he will have to deal with the whole mess.

Tonight begins the second official night of the local Inter-State Fair and Rodeo. This is the extreme sports night with motocross, Dan and Jonathon are going, me I don't know. I might go just to get out and see some people other than those in my living room, but I might stay home and laminate my thirty new copies of My Brother Sam Is Dead. I will definitely go tomorrow night when Miranda Lambert is there. That is followed by four nights of rodeo. I will probably go on Thursday as that is Tough Enough To Wear Pink night, and they raise money for breast cancer awareness. Lots of the cowboys wear pink and they look mighty nice in it. The life of a stitchin schoolmarm is action packed.

Have a wonderful Monday, I am sure I will, maybe, possibly!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Flat Folds

Here are some pics of the flat folds I did last weekend. I can definitely find something wrong with each and every one of them, but since they will probably be displayed around my house I guess that is okay. Perfection is highly overrated.

Hope everyone enjoys a lazy fun-filled Saturday. I know we are going to, we were going to go swimming, but since it is raining I am thinking we will probably invite a friend over to play.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Nineteen Years Ago Today....

at this time I was on my way to the airport heading for New Orleans. I was going to spend the first week of married life on a honeymoon there with my new husband of 2 and 1/2 hours. Today I really can't believe we have been married that long. Maybe it is because the flood last year continues to change our lives dramatically, and has made me stop to realize that I don't give us enough credit as a couple to go through what we have and will contine to face in the coming months.

We went back New Orleans three years later at Christmas time for another visit. It was much cooler temperature wise and just as much fun. About 5 years later we once again went back in December with another couple. We drove this time and had tons of fun. All four of us love to eat (and it is evident to the naked eye), so we ate bread pudding every day for five days where ever we ate we ordered bread pudding and compared them all. The winner was Elvis Presley's restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee the first place we ate on the trip down.

It was about six months after that I found out I was pregnant. After ten years of trying to get pregnant and 5 or 6 of those years spent going to the doctor 1,2, or 3 times a month. The first thing I did when I found out was grab my phone and call a little lace shop in the French Quarter and order a beautiful handmade christening gown. My friend Shelly knew we were going to ramp up the drugs and such in hopes of getting pregnant the next year tried in vain to talk me into to buying one that December, but I was scared to, afraid I might jinx the whole process. Luckily for me on the way out the door she stopped at the cash register and grabbed a business card and told me to put this away in case I needed it.

So when Hurricane Katrina hit I was so relieved that New Orleans wasn't affected. I spent my World Geography class time explaining to the kids about sea level, what the city was like and all. Then I came home and saw what had happened while I was at work. I cried every time I watched the news. Lately, I have been having the urge to go back and see the place again. Maybe year twenty will be the time to do that.

Have a great Tuesday.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

The Fun Never Ends...

Just when I thought things couldn't be more hectic or our luck couldn't be worse..... the air quit yesterday. We finally got it working again last night and the house was comfortable for sleeping, but we're still not sure what exactly the problem is. So, guess what Dan is doing this weekend?

Yesterday we made a trip to Hobby Lobby and I got some stuff to try and make some flat fold stand ups. I made two, the first I was totally unhappy with as it didn't look all that "neat" and perfecto. The second one was much better. I counted and I had approximately 13 different things I needed to do something with and framing is way too expensive and out of the question. I am using the directions from The Twisted Stitcher's tutorials and they work like a charm. Very easy to follow and these make up quickly.

On the other hand I did manage to get some cleaning done, I moved all the furniture in the living room and vaccummed underneath and behind it as well as the normal things you have to do everyday.

On the not housework front I finally got my mom and Jon some new music downloaded for their ipod shuffles. They both always want a song added and when you ask what the song is you get great answers like-- the one they played at the swimming pool the other day. Let's see, oh I know that song! We were only there three hours and heard about thirty songs, but I am sure I know the one you are talking about. My mom wanted the song they played on that commercial about the Olympics. Hello? How many Olympic ads are there on television right now? She did start writing down some of the lyrics when it came on, so that helped us figure out it was "Imagine" by John Lennon.

If you are ever looking for a gift for your mother, who has everything, I highly recommend something like an i-pod or shuffle. If your mother is like mine she is technologically challenged. We got her one for Mother's Day and I downloaded fifty some odd old songs that I knew she would like and gave it to her. She loves it. I got her the shuffle instead of a nano because I figured the shuffle would be easier to operate. Neither she nor Jonathon troubleshoot very well, one week they each came running panicked because "they wouldn't work!" They needed charged, problem solved. I only wish all of life's problems were that easy to solve, I would plug my life and my family's into a battery charger.

Maybe before the weekend is over I will have a problem free air system and some pictures of my latest creations to show.

Until then have a great Saturday, if you live in my neck of the woods we are under a heat advisory, so stay cool. Actual temp right now 95 with a heat index of 105 and 44% humidity. It is hot and muggy.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Stitchin Progress

Okay here is a picture of my progress on the airplane I am stitching. Actually this is super simple pattern to stitch. I just have the backstitching, tail, and the landing gear left to go and this will be one for the books.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

It is HOT! HOT! HOT!

Well, I guess one could say that we are in the dog days of summer here in Kansas. We have had scorching weather here for about the last five days. It did cool down last night and we were treated to a great lightening show. I don't know that we got any sizable rainfall amounts out of the whole deal, but I sat outside and watched the wind and lightening until about midnight. Actually, it was perfect weather to do just that. The mosquitoes weren't out and about, it was cool, and there was a good breeze!

Thursday night we went through all the shoes Jonathon owns and decided which ones did't fit, which ones did etc. We have shoes to start the school year with and I think the soccer shoes will last one more season. The box of hand me downs that is destined for Texas is getting full. I still need to go through his drawers and shirts. I had been sending his clothes to the little boy next door, who is four, but holy cow the kid is already in a size five (and growing like a weed on fertilizer)and Jonathon is still stuck in an eight. Really the only reason we wear a size eight is because the sevens were too short. Thankfully they make jeans with the elastic tabs, because we swim in the waist of a size eight. I figure it won't be that long before the neighbors will be sending us their hand-me downs.

We are unoffically ready for school here. We have Jonathon's school supplies bought. We also took a day trip down to Tulsa on Friday to get him some other things he needed. We are ready for school in the clothes and shoe department. We are also ready for soccer season, as we bought some soccer shorts and new shin guards. I actually got some really good buys on his clothes and shoes. I am a big clearance rack shopper, so that helps out.

I got some new clothes also, but I have a hard time shopping for clothes for myself. Of course when you have your mother and nine year old following you around that doesn't help. Plus factor in the 100 degree weather, it just doesn't make shopping for fat girl clothes that fun. Probably the sensible thing to do would be to just go on a diet and lose the weight, but that is easier said than done. Not that I have really tried in this endeavor very well lately.

I have been cross-stitching on Jonathon's airplane lately and tomorrow should have a progress picture to show. I do believe that everyone, including Abigail, would have to say that it now looks more like an airplane. I am starting to see blue in my sleep, since that is about the only color DMC I have used here of late.

I spent yesterday afternoon putting together vocabulary folders for my students. I had all the papers ran off last spring and punched the holes in them. Earlier this summer I collated them. Yesterday I put the folders together. There is now one less box lying around my dining room.

I suppose I should clean house today, but that may or may not happen.

Have a great Monday (if there is such a thing as a great Monday.)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I had three comments this time! Can you believe that? I feel like I have hit the big time! Not a lot going on here just really hot and now dry. First, too much rain, now needing rain. Can't Mother Nature ever get it right?

We went swimming today with an old friend and her two girls. Jonathon and Abby had fun with them both. We did stay at the pool long enough that they were all asking if they could please leave. I didn't think there was ever a length of time that would cause that to happen.

I am cross-stitching on Jonathon's airplane. Right now I am working on the propeller, so next time maybe Abby will think it looks like an airplane. I told her if she keeps commenting on my "art" she will lose favorite niece status. Since I only have three nieces and rarely see two of them, who are adults, I don't think she is worried.

My cousin Kathy commented that cross-stitch takes a lot of patience. It does, but literally it is a hobby that has saved my sanity many a times. This summer it is the one calming thing I have to look forward to every day. When I get it out I forget all the looming problems I have and go to my happy cross-stitch place. A double bonus is this--I have now given away so much of my cross-stitch that all my family and friends get this look on their face like, OMG! She is going to give something else she made! So now I am doing things for my house. I still have Dan's cows in a snowstorm to do, I guess that I will consider that project a penance for any immediate and future sins I may commit.

Have a great Wednesday, and be happy.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

My Life? One Word at a Time

I took this meme from Debbie's blog and since she put my name as her answer to #35, I felt I the challenge was given and I couldn't disappoint.

Anyway, here goes! You are suppose to answer the questions with one word answers.

1. Where is your cell phone? purse
2. Your significant other? upstairs
3. Your hair? messy
4. Your mother? gentle
5. Your father? happy
6. Your favorite thing? stitching
7. Your dream last night? strange
8. Your favorite drink? diet pepsi
9. Your dream/goal? happiness
10. The room you’re in? computer room
11. Your church? surviving, (we are a small parish so we have to work really hard to keep the diocese from closing us down. We are closer as a parish and growing stronger because of the challenges we have had to keep our little church.) Hey, the rules didn't say you couldn't explain your answer.
12. Your fear? heights
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? here
14. Where were you last night? home
15. What you’re not? nervous
16. Muffins? blueberry
17. One of your wish list items? STASH!
18. Where you grew up? Cherryvale
19. The last thing you did? visiting
20. What are you wearing? clothes
21. Your TV? on
22. Your pets? none
23. Your computer? helpful
24. Your life? challenging
25. Your mood? relaxed
26. Missing someone? dad
27. Your car? gas guzzler
28. Something you’re not wearing? makeup
29. Favorite store? Silver Needle
30. Your summer? busy
31. Like (love) someone? tremendously
32. Your favorite color? blue
33. Last time you laughed? today (Abby was here, she is always giggling and when she is here it is contagious.)
34. Last time you cried? today
35. Who will re post this? Eileen (If she could remember her blogging password!)

Okay, I'm not sure if this is a tag thing or not, but if you would like to do it, consider yourself tagged.

Stitching WIPS

Here are some photos of my stitching WIP's
1st off we have Lady Liberty, which is really not the name of the pattern, by Mirabella. I have had this pattern for a long time and then when Mindy of Mindy's Memories started posting her progress photos I was really inspired to start this one for myself. This piece is being completed on a piece of over dyed fabric from Silkweaver's.

2nd we have a F-40 something or other airplane for my son. I bet you could tell it was an airplane by the photo. I actually started this a couple of days ago and have spent more time ripping out than stitching, so the progress is going a little slow. This particular pattern is from the Legendary Aircraft book by Stoney Creek. It is being done on some 18 count linen from Silkweaver's

3rd is a country schoolhouse that will hopefully someday hang in my kitchen. This was started a couple of years ago on a snow day from school. We were hit with a major blizzard that day. Actually we went to school and then we were sent home, so I made a little side trip to pick up the threads for this on my way home and started it that evening. This year it became my swimming lesson project. It is also a Stoney Creek pattern. It is done on evenweave fabric.

Summer continues here. We are at last getting a Kansas summer. The rains have stopped for the moment and it is hot. Dan is finally able to get into the fields to plant. We are praying that things will work out in the farming arena. It has been a struggle to recover after the flood.

Yesterday was Dan's birthday, and tomorrow is mine. My neighbor went out to a local farm and picked a bunch of peaches, so instead of a birthday cake Dan got homemade peach pie and ice cream. Jonathon picked out four DVD's for his dad, and last night when Dan got home from his meeting we watched the final episode of MASH.

Jonathon loves the show MASH and watches reruns of it all the time. It is sort of ironic because MASH was one of my dad's all time favorite shows. I told him one night when he was up late watching them that was one of his Grandpa John's favorite shows. I try to tell him things like that when they come up, since my dad died years before he was born. I think it gives him some sort of a connection.

Well, until tomorrow I hope you have a great day. I am off to work on that airplane.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Day Trip

Last spring when my MIL passed away her funeral happened to be on the same day as Jonathon's class had a field trip planned. I told him at the time not to say a word to his dad about missing it and I would take him to the same place this summer. Well, today we got up and headed off to Woolaroc. For those of you not familiar with it. I believe (I could be wrong, it rarely happens, but today could be the day!) it was a ranch owned by the Phillips family. You know the Phillips 66 Gas stations and oil company (I think maybe it is now ran by Conoco). Anyway the grounds feature a mountain man camp with reenactors on hand to tell you about the place, a museum celebrating the Indian hertiage of the era and serveral different things from the Phillips family belongings. There is also a variety of wildlife on the gounds, a petting zoo, children's playground etc.

Jonathon especially enjoyed the Mountain Man camp because they had different hides there on display, and you got to shoot a real gun from that era. He thought that was really neat.

He picked the Rib Crib for lunch and as we drove back to town we also swung by the Frank Phillps Home and had a little look. They were opened for tours, but we decided to save that for another day.

Above are some pictures from our day out.

Monday, July 7, 2008

The Inventor of Metallic Thread

should be shot, tarred and feathered or something! I have been stitching on Lady Liberty and I am doing the metallic stitching. I really hate the awful stuff, later I get to stitch with one strand of DMC and a strand of the metallic stuff. I can wait forever to do that. Actually, it was to the point today that I seriously thought of putting the old gal away and stitching something else. I would however, like to be able to say I have finished something besides that little kit this summer.

Jonathon had a buddy over to play today so I did get about four hours of peace and quiet to stitch. Besides a couple of romps through the kitchen to grab a cupcake and drink I hardly knew they were there. I told the little boy's mom she could pick up him about 5, but not to hurry because when she did that meant I had to get up and go outside and mow. You would know this woman was the most punctual person on Earth, she showed up right at five! Anyway, I am hoping that the mowing is done for at least a week and Dan is home the next time it needs to be done.

Have a great Tuesday, I plan to ... you know me, Lady Liberty, diet coke, and Reba reruns with a little Y & R and Days of Lives thrown in for good measure.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July

Hope everyone has a great fourth. We are going to our friends house. They always put on a magnificent spread and great fireworks show.

The patriotic people at the top are my husband and son, and my mother and son.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Let The Fireworks Begin

Well, today was the first day you could shoot or buy fireworks here in the city limits. We have a friend over for a sleepover, so the first thing we did was hit the fireworks stand and for a little bit of money they were entertained all afternoon and evening. It always amazes me how cheap some of the fireworks are in price. Of course our church used to run a fireworks stand as a fundraiser and it always amazed me the people who came and spent hundreds of dollars to blow and burn up and then couldn't eat the rest of the month. I bought today, but Jonathon has been stashing away some money to buy fireworks for awhile. The rest of them are on him.

We had tanks and chickens, ground bloomin flowers, day and night parachutes, Saturn missiles, mighty crackers, bees, and a host of other things that whizzed, banged, whistled and popped. Nobody got injured, and it was hours of fun!

As a kid growing up I always loved the 4th of July because everyone would get together and go to my grandparents and have a big picnic. Then when it got dark all the dads would take the night works across the street to my uncle's and shoot them off for everyone to watch. I think it is kind of sad that we don't do anything like that now, it was great family tradition. I find it sort of hard being an only child and having an only child to have big family traditions. I mean when it is just the three of us and my mom holidays seem a lot of time like any ordinary day of the week.

My cousins live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and their kids have never lived anywhere that they were actually allowed to shoot fireworks of any kind. Once when they were little they were in Kansas and one of them asked if we could go and rent some fireworks to use while they were here. Of course they weren't very old, but we still laugh about that today.

I took some pictures of the two boys blowing stuff up, but they didn't come out very good. I added a couple of them at the top, but I was in the shade and they were in the sun, and for some reason I had the worst headache all day long.

I have got some stitching done on Lady Liberty lately she now has a head even a little hair.

Tomorrow when our buddy departs I have an appointment for some diet coke, Reba, and stitching.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Remembering Tony

So today I did something I would have rather not had to do. In fact, when I got up this morning I tried to think of a reason not to, I went to the funeral of one of my former students. He was sixteen years old and was killed in a car/train accident that also took the life of his grandfather. Tony wasn't a perfect kid by any stretch of the imagination, but he was a student I was very fond of. Ornery is one way to describe him. He had little brown eyes and they would shine when he was thinking of doing something he shouldn't be doing. I saw the gleam many a time. In seventh grade he and a girl named Nancy were wildly, madly in love. In fact their relationship last for almost two months! That is how serious it was! But then the love turned sour and they would break up, get back together, etc. I just remember that every time they "broke up" he would ask out one of her best friends and that would cause major drama in my seventh hour class. Tony enjoyed every minute of the drama and having those girls fight over him. I have to laugh now thinking about it, the girls would be mad, near tears and Tony would just set back. The reason I think of this particular story was I saw all three girls at the funeral today.

I had this group of kids my first year back to teaching after a five years hiatus. I lived way out in the country 9-20 miles from the three little towns near us. I thought at least none of them will ever be able to find my house and TP it or egg it. Well, about two or three months into the school year Tony burst in the room and announced I know where you live! My grandma knows you too! I do believe his grandparents had lived down the road from us for awhile.

One thing I really enjoyed about this morning was seeing so many of the students I had in the past. After the service there were hugs, tears, and a lot of laughs. They started telling stories of things they had done with Tony. Now normally these stories wouldn't have been shared with any teachers, but I have to say my spirits were definitely uplifted to be around these young adults and talk to them. When you know them as a 13 year old they can sometimes make you doubt yourself and what you are actually accomplishing as a teacher. Sometimes they, at that age, can make you actually doubt humanity and the future. But as young adults they are uplifting, out in the world trying as best they can. Today they weren't a 13 year old who forgot to do their homework they were: a state champion soccer player, baseball players who served as a pall bear for their teammate, wrestlers, thespians, fast food workers, a tomboy turned girly girl, no longer young kids, but future adults.

Of course after hearing the stories I am once again reminded of the things boys that age do. Right now I am trying to figure out how to keep my kid nine forever. I took Jonathon to school with me one day when I had those kids. He took this rug he had with roads and stuff printed on it and some hot wheels to play with, some the kids there today remembered laying of the floor with him playing hot wheels.

Please remember Tony and his family and friends in your prayers. I know in the coming days, weeks , and months they will need them.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

This That and the Other

Well, it has been awhile since my last update, but we have been busy. We have had relatives here from Iowa, New Hampshire, and Illinois so that was fun. We always enjoy seeing Dan's cousins and visiting with them as they are really fun people to be around. On Wednesday evening they came to our house for pizza and hanging out. Thursday they went to Pittsburg, Kansas to visit other cousins and have a cookout. Friday we all met at noon in Liberty for lunch. Friday night there was a big family dinner at the local community building. My bunch missed that dinner because Jonathon had a ballgame. But the nice thing about having a ballgame that night was Jonathon's older cousin, whom he idolizes, got to come and watch him play.

Saturday we finished our ball season. I like Jonathon to participate in sports because I want him to be active. I have to say I was more than a little disappointed in the last game of the season because I don't think it was about the kids. It was sort of the coaches pitted against each other with one trying to outwit the other one, and one certain parent on the bleachers complaining and berating the umpires the entire game. The coach thing wasn't hostile or anything--maybe they were just trying to get the kids to play the game better mentally, but it was a very long game for the rest of us. Now we have one more week of swimming lessons to go and then we will be done.

Abby spent the weekend with us. Her mom was out of town and the guys are starting wheat harvest. Sometimes I think Abby thinks she lives with us. She is very comfortable at our house.

So Saturday afternoon we get in the car and head to Sonic for Happy Hour, we get the corner to turn onto the main drag and bad brakes. I managed to get us back home. Dan isn't sure what is wrong with the car, but I think today once wheat harvest gets underway he is going to look into that. Even though I wasn't happy about a vehicle breakdown it did give us an excuse to just stay home and hang out. I actually got a lot of stitching done on Lady Liberty even though it doesn't look like a lot. I was working on the head and face area. Lots of color changes and stuff. Of course in her inspection of the cross-stitch Abby quickly pointed out that she had no head. I told her I was aware and she would have one shortly.

Today we are going up to the Aquatic Park for awhile and hang out. I am hoping that will wear them down and when they get home they will just want to flop and do something calm.

The pictures above are from this weekend and a couple of the flowers in our front yard. Have a great Sunday.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


This week we have family here from Iowa, Illinois, and New Hampshire. The visitors are Dan's aunts and cousins. They have had this trip planned for a long time as Dan's mother was very ill and they wanted to see her one last time. Well, Dan's mom passed in April after a very prolonged battle with breast cancer. The out of state relatives decided that instead of making a mad dash here for the service they would wait until this summer when they could stay longer and everyone would be more able to visit. So, my SIL and I kept hearing all of these whispering about a big family dinner, etc. We asked the husbands and they claimed to know nothing. We asked each other's husbands they knew nothing. We asked all the important questions when? where? do I need to cook or bring anything? Neither of them had talked to their sisters since the funeral, was the one answer we kept getting. Then they switched to the standard mumbled I don't know. ETC ETC.
Well come to find out the sisters had talked to both of their brothers and dad numerous times about this, they just don't remember. Why are men like this? All they had to do was say a family dinner tomorrow at Liberty School, but did they? NO. Both of my husband's sisters were mortified that we knew nothing about it. It isn't as if tomorrow wasn't going to be busy enough with swim lessons, running here and there with the visitors etc, now we have to throw cooking into the mix.
I am just so irritated right now!
One SIL said it must just be men. Her husband went back to his hometown last week to help out with something for his parents and totally forgot that his nephew's wife had a baby the day he got there! He went to the hospital to see the baby even! He did remember they had a cookout and what he ate etc, but forgot about the newborn baby. Seriously, people!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Rainy Days and Mondays.....

always get me down. I was really hopeful that we would miss yesterday's batch of rain, but we didn't. We are supposed to receive rain for about the next four days. Tonight would have been our last baseball game of the season, and swimming lessons were supposed to start this week, but alas no we will set home today and watch it rain and rain and rain some more.

This weekend we didn't do a lot. On Saturday we went to the pool for awhile in the afternoon. As luck would have it several of our school buddies were there, so Jonathon had lots of fun. I finished painting the second coat in Jonathon's room and mowed our yard and my mom's. That is about the extent of our fun filled weekend. I am really ready to get this room thing finished. I can't stand all of the clutter in the living room.

We also have relatives coming in this weekend. I don't want the house to be a mess, even though I am not even sure that they will be at my house. Today I guess would be a great day to start cleaning in the basement, which we call "Manland". It looks like it too. A great big messy man cave.

So until tomorrow have a great day.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


I love it when the flags fly all up and down the main drag of small little places like ours. I don't think there is anything more beautiful than that. The above picture was taken at the cemetary where my dad is buried on Memorial Day. A local couple in my hometown wanted to have the flags flying at the cemetary on such holidays, so they started a campaign asking people to sponsor a flag and pole in someone one's memory. One of those flags is flying honor of my dad. He was in the army, but never fought in a war. Actually he was stationed in Germany at the same time Elvis Presley was there serving our country. He never said anything about that until Elvis died. He remembered Elvis coming to the base where he was stationed a couple of times.

God Bless America!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Room Makeover Has Begun

Yesterday we got the paint, wallpaper paste etc. Today we have the room cleaned out. I have just finished taping off the trim and stuff. As soon as Dan gets home to help me make the line (using that Black and Decker thingamagig) around the room to separate the two colors we'll be ready to paint!

We got everything off of the walls and I pulled the nails where stuff had been hanging and Jonathon did the spackling. My mom nearly fainted when I told her I let him do that, but he really did a good job. I bet in the construction world he would win an award for Most Enthusiastic Spackler for June 12, 2008.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

I Can Understand, Sort Of

I had to turn the channel several times in the last few days. I couldn't stand to watch those homes in Wisconsin being washed away, it was just a little too much. Tonight reading the news on I came across a video from the Today Show where Matt Lauer interviewed the family that lived in one of the homes. It was really sad. The older little girl stood there and bit her lip and cried.

Last July 1st several towns in our area had massive flooding. My small city was one of the worst hit. Nearly 2000 people were displaced here. Water breached the levy north of town shortly after midnight. The local refinery didn't have time to shut down properly and inadvertently and spilled about 60,000 gallons of crude oil into the flood waters making matters worse.

My in-laws lived on the family farm. Dan's dad was born there and raised his family there. Their house was located about 30 ft. from the levy and my in-laws lost their home and it obliterated all of our crops for last year. The two pictures above are of the family farm. Thankfully the equipment was all high enough it didn't get damaged, we did lose some stuff in the shops. The green stuff you see growing there is the corn crop, which was probably in excess of 6ft tall at the time of the flood. I get a little anxious and anxiety ridden when it starts to rain now, especially since we have had too much rain already this spring.

We spent most of the week with little running water to no running water. One day when the water went off completely it was just surreal. I went to Wal-Mart to get paper plates and it was just a mad house people were grabbing bottled water right and left. You could actually feel the panic. I guess it gave you a feel what others go through in a natural disaster. I can tell you for a fact I never want to go through something like that again.

My son and I went one day down to the local elementary school and handed out water and ice that was sent from FEMA. My sister in law got ready to put ice and water in the back of a jeep and the lady said be careful the tea set was the only toy her daughter had left. It really made you stop and think about being thankful for the things you had.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

He Did Win A T-Shirt

By golly my son did win a t-shirt at basketball camp this morning. He thinks it is for the Hot Shot Contest because he got 31 points, but his friend said that no it is because he was a good listener and followed directions. But here is the kicker. Because of basketball camp he doesn't think he wants to go to college. No, he isn't going straight to the NBA out of third grade! Three of the college players (this is a community college) came to the end of camp today. The coach introduced them to the kids and told a little about each of them, you know where they were from and what positions they played. Then one of the them dunked the ball, I was actually quite impressed by that as the guy wasn't that tall. Anyway on the ride home Jonathon announced that he doesn't think he wants to go to college because those guys just came from summer school and he just doesn't think he would like summer school. I didn't even try to explain that college summer school is different than elementary summer school. I merely stated he had to go to college.

So I am posting twice in one day because tomorrow I don't think I will be able to life my arms above my head. I did clean out the basement window wells, but I also cleaned up this messy place in the front yard where I have some flowers in pots and an old wheelbarrow. The previous owners of this house layered landscaping rocks covered by that black cloth to stop weeds then about 2 inches of mulch on top. It was all moldy and had toadstools growing everywhere, so I shoveled and raked all of that up, sprayed with roundup, put down more black cloth and then a minimal amount of mulch.

I have decided that we will practice the multiplication tables this summer as part of our learning. It always drove me crazy when I taught fifth grade and kids were still counting basic facts on their fingers. So we will work on that. But I am also going to get a blank map of the U.S. and he can start learning the locations of the fifty states. I don't think I will have to make him read as he generally will sit down and read on his own.

We are getting ready this week to redo his room. Right now it is clouds, moons, and stars. We are changing that to ARMY! We are crazy about anything army. Last year for AR we read several books about the World War II era. We have camouflage bed sets for the bunk beds. We got some really neat wallpaper border from a wallpaper wholesaler, so tomorrow we are going to start cleaning out the room getting ready to paint, paper, and throw stuff away (I haven't really told him about that part).

Tomorrow afternoon it might be back to REBA, Lady Liberty and diet coke.

First Finish of 2008

Okay, Ladies and Gentlmen, here is my first cross-stitch finish of 2008. I believe the name of this is Bloomin Alphabet. Sorry for the poor picture quality, but when you wake up at 4:30 am perfection is hard to obtain. This project was a little kit sent to me by my friend Eileen in Rhode Island. It was stitched on linen using Weeks overdyed thread. What am I going to do with this finished piece? I am not sure yet. I just finished it and trust me that was the only constructive thing I did yesterday, besides watching six (yes,six) reruns of REBA. Abby and I like Barbara Jean. When Abby is here she watches REBA reruns with me instead of playing with her cousin.

Now you are probably asking why I was awake at 4:30. My husband is off spending money today and it has me a little nervous. He is going to Nebraska to buy a trailer to haul his header for his combine, then going somewhere (I dont' even know if the place is in Kansas) to buy a header for the combine he just bought. He has to do this otherwise he won't be able to harvest any wheat this summer. Then there is all of this rain we are having right about the time wheat harvest should begin, high fuel prices, spending money. Can you get that this is all a little stressful for me? This isn't like me going down to the Silver Needle and enhancing my stash a little. The other reason I got up so darn early was to make sure he set the alram for 6 am, then I couldn't go back to sleep.

Yesterday was our first day of basketball camp. It was just "a little fun" and we don't know if we learned anything or not. We did score 12 points at Hot Shot, but did not win the t-shirt. I guess as a parent I have failed to teach my child it is not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game. However, today our friend Eric is going to come home with us to play after basketball, so we are going to be up and at it today.

I have kind of decided that this summer he has to do something in the line of chores everday to earn his allowance. I later decided that on some days he will have to do some sort of homework to earn his allowance. I think we will start with reviewing his multiplication facts. I am pretty sure at the end of last year he knew all the facts up to the 12's. I read on some blogs their kids have to do something in the line of school work everyday, and while I like that idea I also like the idea of forgetting we ever heard about school. As a teacher I like to get away from school once in awhile.

We do have some sort of educational things planned for this summer. I am going to take him to Woolarc. When his class went there on a field trip he had to miss school that day because his grandmother had died. I told him that we would go there one day this summer. It will only cost an arm and a leg to go to this nearby tourist attraction in my car, but we will go.

I have made a firm plan that when it is blistering hot today (and not raining buckets) I will accomplish something besides stitching on Lady Liberty and drinking too much caffeine laced Diet Coke, while watching reruns of REBA. I think today is the day I clean out the basement window wells. Wish me luck.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Another Rainy Day

Yep, it's raining again. I think we have received somewhere around 25 inches of rain since the middle of May here. When it isn't raining the wind is blowing like mad. I don't know who made Mother Nature so angry, but I wish they would either make amends or she would get over it.

Yesterday I finally got some laundry done. We went the local walking track and I walked while Jonathon went fishing. My mom sat at the dock near the pond there with him. Ofcourse we had no fishing bait, so he took some corn. Don't laugh some of his friends used it at the scouting thing, even though they didn't catch a thing. He was a little put out when we got in the car because he didn't catch anything. I was glad he didn't catch anything because 1. It is catch and release there, he couldn't have kept the fish and he would have wanted to... and 2. I don't know how to take a fish off the hook, so then what would we have done?

I am due to finish my first cross-stitch project of 2008 today. It is nothing big. I do have some projects I wanted to get finished or started this summer. The first is Lady Liberty. I think it is a Mirabella pattern, the second is a Stoney Creek old time schoolhouse. The last two projects are for my son and husband. The son wants a WWII plane stitched from a Stoney Creek book and there is this old pattern called Wintertime Feeding my husband has wanted for a very long time. (Is ten years really that long?) I started it last summer on linen, but holy moly trying to get all of those snowflakes in the right place on linen, can you say headache? I ordered some overdyed aida from Silkweaver's to start it over.

The second picture is of my neice Abby and my son, Jonathon. This was taken last summer. They are one year and two weeks apart. Most people would think being so close in age they wouldn't get along very well, but really the opposite is true. They get along really well. I think part of it is due to the fact that while Abby can be a girly, girl she is also a tomboy. The first picture is Abby the girly girl. I had just gotten my new camera and needed some practice. she is always willing to strike a pose for me, where as Jonathon doesn't pose.

Well, I still have three hours left to myself this morning as basketball camp started. We have been a little lazy and sleeping late since school got out, but this morning we have to get up and get moving. It was hard.