Thursday, May 31, 2007

Guilty As Charged!

I'll admit it. While I love '80's music, I know little about this. This was by far the most difficult Blogthings quiz I've taken so far. Good luck!
You Scored 30% Correct

You know some 80s stuff
Like that Paula Abdul was a star back then
But you're not sure who Suzie Q was
And you don't know what Samantha Fox was really famous for!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Music Videos

Call me boring, but I hate these things. Sitting around watching music videos makes me feel like I'm in Junior High, during the advent of MTV, when we would all sit around to see the "premiere" of the newest Michael Jackson video. Pointless. If I'm going to watch TV, I'm going to watch something with substance that's not just people screaming words I can't understand!!

So, here we are, watching music videos, and I keep every few minutes looking up, forgetting what we are doing, catching myself about to say, "What are we watching?" or even "What is this junk?" For the first time in a LONG, LONG time, I'm enjoying the commercials!

Blog break - watching a preview for... just a minute.... Ben Stiller movie The Heartbreak Kid. Looks funny, pointless (like watching these annoying music videos), but at least entertaining. Now I'm watching three Englishmen talking (I can't understand what they are saying) sitting at a hibachi table. What is Klaxons? Three naked guys in water. Getting wrapped in ribbon. It's hard to hear what they are saying, through the dogs barking.

When did I get so boring?

Sunday, May 27, 2007


This one is funny! Long, but hilarious. Truth be told, I had never even heard of half of them!

Your Slanguage Profile

New England Slang: 100%

Southern Slang: 50%

Aussie Slang: 25%

British Slang: 25%

Canadian Slang: 25%

Prison Slang: 25%

Is this Right?

Your Personality is Somewhat Rare (ISTP)

Your personality type is reserved, methodical, spirited, and intense.

Only about 6% of all people have your personality, including 3% of all women and 8% of all men
You are Introverted, Sensing, Thinking, and Perceiving.

I'm actually an ISTJ, but when I took this very abbreviated quiz I was different.... Hmmm..... well, interesting, still rare.

Friday, May 25, 2007

I'm no turkey...

but I guess I'm some kind of vulture?? Yuck! Why couldn't they have found another bird to fit this description??

Your Power Bird is a Vulture

You are always changing your life and the lives of those around you.
You aren't afraid to move on from what holds you back.
Energetic and powerful, you have a nearly unlimited capacity for success.
You know how to "go with the flow" and take advantage of what is given to you.
What's Your Power Bird?

This one was a given:

You Are Totally Like Your Mom

You and your mom are practically clones.
You think alike, and you even seem to read each other's minds.
You're definitely you're mother's child... and that's just fine with you.

Again, a given:

You Are a Hot Fudge Sundae

Classic, simple, and divine.
Why mess with perfection?

thanks, deana!

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Take Four

I have been so delinquent in posting. Over the past week, I've been feeling ill - stiff neck, sore throat, headache.... just allergies or some virus I've been guessing. T went yesterday to the dr. and I thought he was crazy, until the dr. called today to inform him that his strep test came back positive!! So, tonight, instead of attending Kt's very last Girl Scout Awards Ceremony, we took the girls to the doc and I went to the walk-in medical clinic.

So far, we are all safe. I probably have a virus, Em is clear, but Kt, while her rapid test came back negative she has other symptoms... may need to watch her! I did win the BP category, coming in at 177/113 - still not my record;-), but pretty close! It eventually came down slightly, but it's par for the course with a new doc, low grade temp and feeling totally lousy.

Tomorrow I have a full day ahead. T is staying home with Kt, Em and I have a field trip to attend with her school, then I run down to teach my last MDO class. Once home, I have to run up to church, deliver desserts for tomorrow night, get Sunday stuff ready then come home and pack. We're leaving at 4am Saturday to drive up to CT. We briefly thought about heading out tomorrow afternoon since we're all home, but why infect our relatives? And we still have a graduation party tomorrow night!

So this doc at the walk-in clinic told me just to take something for the pain, swollen glands, stiff neck. I told her I had been taking three Advil, then went down to two. She asked me why and I said I was feeling better. She told me to take four! I guess that's like one for each of us - hehe. I don't think my stomach will be liking this, but my head might!

Have a great Memorial Day weekend, everyone!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Wow Me!

Today was one more day that just convinced me I have to give up this Mother's Day Out job I've been doing all year. The girls didn't have school, they had nowhere to go so they came with me. Before T's new job, he always stayed home with them, but this was now my 4th Friday in 2 months where either we had a late open mess, 1/2 day, no school OR someone was sick. Crazy.

While it was kind of a drag, God used this day to teach me a couple things about my children - they are very adaptable! They Wow'd me today. Both of them were very excited to come to work with me, thankfully. Kt especially had put a lot of thought into what she wanted to do with the kids today, and I think she actually accomplished more than she had set out to do. As usual, it completely energized her. I, on the other hand, have been a lump on a log since I got home!

Em also did a great job today, but definitely more mixed in with my 3/4 year olds. She decided to take an extended lunch with the director, who was totally laughing at how much both my girls had my same mannerisms. I assured her that was a consequence of staying home with your children! That's my Em!

I taught for 5 1/2 years, but lately when it comes to creativity with children, I'm just not feeling it. It has really frightened me from jumping back into anything education related. I used to love coming up with fun lessons, planning art projects, leading children in creative writing pieces, and now? My mind is blank. Today only impressed upon me how I've lost my touch when my 9 year old daughter seemed to have more influence on my kids than I did. Not only that, she had 100 times the enthusiasm with them - maybe that is my problem!

Kt did the following: ran around the gym with 20 kids, with a huge smile on her face, organized them for craft time and helped each of them with each part of the craft, initiated completely made-up-on-the-spot games with the kids, included all the children - even the few who were very hesitant to play, located and used every resource available to her in that room, interacted with each child during lunch time with great interest, and ended her day with kids vying to sit on her lap for the video. Did I mention my daughter is 9? I was completely blown away by her today. I'm wondering if maybe all my teaching/child abilities exited my body and flowed straight into her when she was born!

Today made me very excited about this summer. All along I've been thinking about our trip to Hungary in terms of "what am I going to do about the girls?" and "where will we fit them into the team?" Now I'm wondering what God is going to show me in my girls, how else will they amaze me? Kt has a gift - well, she has many - but this one is big. I cannot wait for her to go this summer. Fortunately, Em is her faithful follower, who I'm sure will learn a lot. I will just stand in the background with my jaw on the floor!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Bible 101

Should Bible classes be taught in public schools?? It's an age old debate coming to the forefront once again in Texas this time. A few issues come to my mind when I see this. At first glance, I am fearful that if we open up public schools to Bible teaching by ??? what will the result be? In other words, who in the public schools is qualified to teach the Bible? I'm sure there are many wonderful Christian teachers, but there's no guarantee they will be the ones handed this curriculum. I'm also leery that if we start teaching Bible classes, what's next? Koran classes? Yikes! I'm sure those same supporters of Bible classes would be heading to court over the Koran.

I'm not nearly as scared about not teaching the Bible in school when I know that I'm free to teach it at home, where I know exactly how it's being taught. I'm not signing my children up for Hebrew school expecting them to learn about about Christianity. I'm certainly not signing them into public schools expecting them to come home with new ideas about religion and beliefs! I don't really understand the push to include Bible in public schools, other than that Christians feel they are being pushed out the front door and are trying desperately to get their foot back in. I'm just not sure this is the best foot forward.

But, the truth of the matter is this: it's an elective. For those who don't know what that means, it's a class that students do not HAVE to take. They CHOOSE to take it. Under those circumstances, I'm all for it - I think! Again, I'd love to view the curriculum, know who's teaching it and want my child to choose to take this class - not force them to. I think under the most desirable conditions, this could be an awesome opportunity for my children. Under not so wonderful conditions, this could be a major roadblock in someone's faith.

Let's say a not so willing teacher is asked to teach this class, say someone who is an atheist. What if someone is chosen to teach this class who has no idea what the overall theme of the Bible even is; that God, the trinity, deeply desires to be in a relationship with every single human being out of an unconditional, indisputable love for what He has created? What if a student who really doesn't want to take that class is forced to by some "well-meaning" parents? What if said student learns from said teacher that there really is no overall theme within those sacred pages of a historical document? What then? Will we be jumping for joy that we won and that the Bible can be carried into a public school?

I try to wrap my mind around these issues, prayer in school, teaching theories other than evolution, adding a Bible class to public school curriculum, and I don't see it as really all that black and white like many others do. The last thing I want as a Christian parent is for my child to be the victim of a hostile, vindictive teacher who is forced to teach something he/she doesn't really believe in. I had an experience like that in my high school biology class, where my teacher, the most popular teacher in school, would systematically single out Christians who believed in creation and decimate us in front of our peers. I'm NOT interested in that for my child, but I don't believe forcing teachers to teach classes they are not interested in or knowledgeable about is the answer.

So, what is the answer? For me, I'm not jumping on the bandwagon either way. I'm not fighting for this or against it. If Bible classes are offered at my child's Maryland High School (I'm sort of laughing at this, as MD will be the VERY LAST state to ever accept a Bible class inside a public school!), we'll find out who is teaching it, what the curriculum is IF my child is even interested in taking that elective. If it's never offered, which would be my bet, then we'll just try to take care of that deficiency at home, which is what I would expect most Christian parents do.

If you want to put the Bible in public schools, send it in by word of mouth. Raise children who know it, who live by it, who can apply it to everyday situations. It won't be a class, it will be a lifestyle that their friends, teachers and peers will see as different and maybe someday will remember as something that was worth living by. As a parent, do the same. I'm not saying this because we have perfected this method - far from it! I wish this was us that I'm describing. This article actually is spurring me on to do a better job with this. (I'm kind of ashamed to admit this - but I know we can do better!)


Proud Mama

Today I got to be a proud mama! I mean, everyday I'm a proud mama, but today was special because I am really celebrating an amazing year for my girls. I attended a Parent Volunteer breakfast at our school where Em's class sang a song. Each of the kindergarten classes sang and her class was by far the best! They sang a song called Tony Chestnut - adorable! - and their amazingly talented teacher sat down and never once had to help them. I'm totally proud of them, of their teacher and of Em.

I went from there to the third grade pod to drop of Kt's folder. She received her second ACE award, which is an achievement citizenship and excellence award given upon recommendation of a teacher. Em and Kt received their's together earlier in the year. Then Em got a second one about a month ago and Kt was not happy! She said that her teacher said once everyone gets one, she does not do them anymore (which I would tend to support!), but low and behold - Kt got another! She was thrilled.

While I'm really excited about summer, I am so sad to see the end of such a wonderful year. I think I usually get to the point where I'm ready for it all to be over, but this year I just don't feel that way. I want a continuation, because both girls are so happy, both teachers are so super... I guess I'm just afraid we'll never have another year like this one!

Oh, and my brother, his friend and wife blew in and out of town. He and his friend spent the day in DC yesterday. His wife and I did a little shopping, then picked up the girls early from school for lunch and fun. It was really nice. They left this morning to spend a couple days at Virginia Tech - I can't wait to hear about that - and then a wedding this Saturday in Manassas and one more night here. It's rare that they visit, so we really enjoyed it! I wish my family lived closer - because a day with them is about the best medicine I could wish for!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Calm Before the Storm

When I exited the girls' school yesterday with nothing but my purse (and my girls!), I felt an uncertain sense of relief. I took a deep breath, smiled, let out a huge sigh and felt that overwhelming feeling that I had not allowed myself to feel over the past week or two: exhaustion! Yesterday, after a crazy week/weekend, I began my day by allowing myself to attend my water aerobics class. From there, everything progressed much like a race against time. I ran to the girls' school to collect last minute shower gifts, ran to Target to complete the shower ensemble, finished up the recipe book gift and packaged everything nicely while in the parking lot of the library before my tutoring gig, tutored, ran out and back to the girls' school to chaperone a Breadmake field trip, left that early to attend the bridal shower for Em's kindergarten teacher, ran back to Breadmake to help them finish up, left with my girls.....

Once home, I couldn't really do much but sit around. It had finally caught up with me, the exhaustion and that allergy/cold thing that's been chasing me over the last month. All day I "had something in my eye" that was driving me crazy. It was probably a big sliver of stress! It sent me to bed early, had me up al night and is still itchy and red. That's because I have another long list of things to do today before my brother, his friend and his wife arrive later. It's so long that I won't get to half of it. Right now, I just have to decide what the most important half is!!

I've had enough of my calm, now I need to go brew up a storm around here!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day!

To all the moms out there - Happy Mother's Day! To all the kid's out there, don't forget to do something special for your mom!!

Our weekend has been relaxing. The girls went to T's parent's house Friday night while T and I went away, did a little shopping, went out to eat. Today, we went to church and now we are doing work in the yard - and blogging! LOL

My girls have had a fun time making things for me this year. I received Em's gift on Thursday - she couldn't stand me not seeing it! It was an adorable key chain that she made, a little cup of tea and all in a decorated bag. She kept warning me it was "breakable" and to be very, very careful. That was the plastic key chain! Kt made me a rag doll all on her own. Well, with a little help from her teacher!! It's adorable and I'll post some pictures later. T got me an oil fragrance candle thingy, plants and a few cards. It's been fun! Oh, and he's cooking dinner - Yippee!

Last week, the girls came home from church with invitations to invite a friend to church. Kt immediately had someone in mind, not one of her usual friends. I was a little skeptical, but she went ahead an asked. This girl's mom is an aide at our school and to my surprise (I don't give my daughter enough credit!) they came today. I have to admit, I'm completely impressed with my daughter - and they all had a wonderful time.

In the beginning of the school year, it became apparent to me that my daughter, as usual, was being chosen to do all the fun stuff at school. If something needed to be taken to the office, they asked her. If papers needed to be filed, Kt got to do it. And whenever given the chance to choose a friend, she would always choose the same friend.

One day, she told me about this girl in her class who was not nice, who disobeyed a lot and who was on a behavior chart. She said this girl had no friends. We talked a little about it, and I suggested that maybe this girl needed a friend, that maybe Kt could choose her sometime to help with filing papers or taking a trip to the office. The very next day, Kt did that. She changed the way she treated someone and was surprised by the result - a friendly girl, an improvement in behavior and no more chart. In fact, being a friend to someone can have a positive effect on them. It was this girl who came today, and she is sweet as pie!! Really, it was rewarding as a mom to know that I have the kind of influence on my own child that reaches beyond our home.

Em's little letter she wrote me, which she had to translate!, said as her number one thing she loves about me is that I "put her to bed". I totally laughed at this one. That child has a few funny quirks that she is consistent about. One, that she ALWAYS has to run up and group hug if she sees T and I together. She MUST be in the hug. Two, she will not go anywhere dark in the house alone, like upstairs or downstairs or even in the next room. Finally, she must have one of us "put her to bed" or she just won't fall asleep! This mean we have to actually lay down with her, pray and chit chat for about a minute. Once that is done, she's off to lala land. She once told me how she was the luckiest girl in the world because her mommy lays in bed with her. For such a seemingly insecure child, she is so strongly and willfully independent! I do see a lot of myself in her!

Now none of this would be possible if it weren't for my own mom, my experience from which I have drawn upon for guidance these past almost ten years. In honor of her, I had to tell Em today that if she kept eating all that candy her teeth would fall out!! I mean, you have to use at least some of your mother's lines on your children on Mother's Day, right?? I then told Kt that if I found even one shred of the tin foil she claims to be using on her bugzone on the grass outside I would throw that thing away - kudos mom, for giving me just the right words to say when I need them! I'm sure I'll be honoring her more later, when I ask them both to clean up! And as I'm screaming at them to cooperate, those little words will be ringing inside my head, "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all!" Ooops!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Winding Down

So the week is near end and today was much quieter than the beginning of the week, which generally is not the way my weeks have been happening. This morning, I spent from 9-10:30 making 32 deviled eggs and about 30 fruit kabobs. I then delivered them to some hungry teachers, tutored for a few minutes and left to have lunch with T. I picked up some plants on my way out for the secretaries tomorrow. Oh, and one for the principal - always a good idea not to forget her! Then on to tutoring and back home.

I have a couple things left to do, namely figure out what I'm doing with my mother's day out class tomorrow - a mother's day gift will be nice, but my budget is a bit off due to Teacher Appreciation Week. I really wish they would move TA Week to March when there is absolutely nothing happening anywhere!!! Instead they put it in May, with Mother's Day, graduations, Memorial Day weekend, end of the year stuff, not to mention all the teachers are scrambling to fit in their field trips. Kt, who had one field trip all year, has four more in May!! YIKES! Why don't we just throw all these kids on a bus and do a cross country tour!

Tomorrow I have MDO and Steven Kellogg is coming - yay! I'm kind of glad Em's teacher decided to skip town - we'll do her shower on Monday and that will start off my next crazy week. If you really must know, Monday - shower and out for dessert for our poor couple we are doing premarital counseling for (I'm way too young to do that, just for the record!), Tuesday - my brother, his wife and his friend are coming for dinner, Wednesday - in DC all day?, Thursday - parent volunteer breakfast, tutoring the rest of the day and Friday is my second to last day of Mother's Day Out. Saturday, after I'm done planting all my flowers that I will buy when I have a spare moment, I have a Hungary team sleepover at somebody else's house - YEAH! Sunday, the team comes here.... again!

Oh, right... Tony is taking me away tomorrow night. I'm happy to be getting away, but this means I need to finish up laundry tonight AND clean the house for dogsitters. Oh, will it ever end???

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

God and Caterpillars

Tonight, Em was a little chatterbox! She does that sometimes when she doesn't want to go to sleep, or just when she has something on her mind that she needs to process out loud. Tonight seemed like a combination of both of those!

About a week ago, I came home to caterpillars all over our tiny front porch. My first thought? Gross! My second thought? I thought I asked T to spray those tents on our front tree!!! My kids' thoughts? Complete and utter joy, elation bordering on insanity! Since then, we've had daily caterpillar "events" ranging from feeding times, to prize giveaways to our daily afternoon neighborhood caterpillar races. I'll be rummaging through backpacks to the sound of all the kids in our neighborhood packed into our backyard chanting, "Maya, Maya, Maya, Maya....." That's the name of the favorite caterpillar.

Last weekend, we had our very first caterpillar tragedy. I missed it, but T had the privilege of witnessing it at the park. The girls each brought their caterpillars along with their scooters. Apparently, at one point Kt had the brilliant idea of taking her caterpillar for a ride on her scooter, which proceeded without incident. Until, of course, Em decided to give it a try and accidentally stepped right on that caterpillar. Kt (mind you, she's 9!) burst into tears and Em fled in shame to the hills. I'm quite glad I missed it, otherwise my cynical laughter might have had dire repercussions.

Had I not been so disgusted by the caterpillars themselves, I might have seen sooner the impact they are really having on my children. I was quite taken aback tonight when Em announced to me as I was cuddling with her in bed that she could not believe that God would do this to her. I had to delve a little deeper, because that was a statement I've never heard from her before. She explained that God had "given" them 13 caterpillars today. She went on to explain to me that until today, they were so sad that they were down to just one caterpillar, Maya. They originally had three, one accidentally got away, one was accidentally stepped on and then they just had one that everyone had to share.

I have to admit, her perception of what had happened stunned me. She went on to very eloquently describe to me the immense amount of sorrow if caused them that there seemed to be a caterpillar shortage. In the past week, the only caterpillars they could find were 4 dead ones on our driveway and about 10 dead ones in the street. This only added to their grief. But today, God saw their sadness and gave them 13 live caterpillars, and because of this they have been able to give some away and Maya has a friend.

This story has not changed the way I feel about caterpillars. They are still outside pets, never to enter the confines of my bugfree inner sanctum I like to call my house. I still inwardly cheer when they tell stories of caterpillars squooshed and I'm looking forward to the time the caterpillars morph into something I like even less - moths! But the connection that Em made between God and caterpillars, or better yet, God and her sorrow, was striking. I think she really gets it - that God cares. From there, she went on to tell me how nervous and excited at the same time she is about our trip this summer to Hungary. We'll have to make the connection about God caring.

I had to leave Em chatting away about creepy crawly things, all while she was yawning away. That child's mind is with every living creature on this planet, a true naturalist at heart. I wonder who she got that from - not me or T! I guess God knew He'd have a lot to teach her through that love, and He's decided to get started whether or not T and I choose to contribute. Very humbling, yes, very, very humbling!

Of the Valley, perhaps?

You Are A Lily

You are a nurturer and all around natural therapist.
People see you as their rock. And they are able to depend on you.
You are a soothing influence. You can make people feel better with a few words.
Your caring has more of an impact than even you realize.

Beach Bums!

Can I just reiterate just how excited I am that summer is almost here? Here are the things I love most about summer:

1. It's hot!

2. Swimming

3. Shorts and T-shirts!

4. Going to Connecticut/Savannah to hang out with family - VACATION!!

5. Sleeping in

6. Longer days


8. Eating fruit

9. Deviled Eggs

10. Having my beautiful girls home from school, no homework and with lots of time to mold and shape them. Maybe I'm crazy, but sending back to school in the fall is very depressing for me. I'm so looking forward to having them home this summer!!

What is your favorite thing about summer?

Tuesday, May 08, 2007


So, I'm reading this headline, "No Hollywood Stars for Dinner with Queen Elizabeth II", and I'm wondering ~ who in Hollywood thinks that President Bush, who a majority of them have attacked each chance they get over the war in Iraq, would even consider inviting them to a dinner with dignitary from a country that is our biggest ally in the war they so vehemently speak out against? What place do they have dining at a table with two enemies they continuously lobby against?? I'm having a really hard time understanding the double standard here.... then again, it's Hollywood. They probably didn't even think about how contradictory their "being dissed" sounds!

Day Two!

After yesterday's crazy start to a crazy week, today just seemed really, uh, hmm, well, non-phasical. I know that's not a known word to most of you, so I'll expound. The fact that my oldest daughter, despite more than ten strong, loud, intense warnings to get her heiny out the door this morning, chose to make her bus journey to school a nonpriority this morning didn't even phase me. That's because I'm in the non-phasical mode of expecting things to go against any and all pre-planned, preconceived idea of what my day will look like!

I had to, of course, remedy this grave error of hers by driving her to school. Let me warn you, a ride to school with a mom who has somewhere to be and driving you to school puts that off kilter, well it's just not a happy journey! We are going to have to work on this before we join the "team" this summer. But I already told her that!!

After scrambling to gather what I needed (and thought I'd have extra time to pull together) we jumped in the car, went the opposite direction from where I should have been going to get her to school, then reversed my trip to head to church where I arrived about 5 minutes late - not too bad! Except for the fact that my Connections leader saw me heading out of my neighborhood in the opposite direction - just bad for one's reputation. It was our last meeting, so my Tuesday mornings will now be free - YAY! It was fun, but very long today. I finally got out of there around 12:20 and went straight to Kt's room mom's house so I could make the cover for a book the kids worked on for Teacher Appreciation Week.

We sat for a bit, went through all the pages and I must say, I was making extra effort to try to enjoy that part. I finally allowed myself to relax and enjoy time with someone despite the fact that I still had to run home to make the cover, run to school to bind the book, get the book back to her and then do all our grocery shopping for the week. I ended up doing all that in record time - even an hour to spare! Now I'm relaxing because round two is about to begin tonight.

Kt has an "enrichment fair" tonight, I have to get stuff together for the Girl Scout Daisy meeting tomorrow and then make brownies for the teachers. I love Tuesday night - because we usually have no commitments! Usually. Tomorrow, I'm going to water aerobics if I have to make Kt walk to school - hahahaha... then I'll end up in jail for sure. Instead of waiting for her to get ready tomorrow, I'll be waking her up at 7:30! Like I said, not a fun trip to school this morning.

Tomorrow: water, free time!, tutoring, free time!, Daisies, free time!! In that free time: getting ready for Daisies, finishing up gifts for teachers, getting a start on those fruit kabobs and deviled eggs I need to make for Thursdays teacher luncheon. I have to say this - while this week is totally hectic and crazy and my kids are only contributing to those two factors, I am enjoying the opportunity to express our thanks to two of our very favorite teachers. I think they are awesome and we've honestly had just about one of our favorite years ever. It makes running around like headless poultry an honor!

The Inspiration of Prince

So, Purple Rain Prince is taking some time off to study ::The Bible::! Hmm... I have to say, I'm a little surprised, very curious but really interested. I wonder if Bono is starting to influence those in his circle of musicians and if there might be a stirring in some hearts. Then again, I could be way off on this one!

13 years of marriage

This July will mark 13 years of marriage - the same year and month my brother will have another Friday the 13th birthday. Total coincidence. LOL Anyway.... is that right? Aww, I don't know and it's too late for me to figure it out. Again... a couple we know, who were in our D-team when T and I led them years ago, asked us to assist them in premarital counseling. It's very humbling, surprising and even a little flattering all at the same time. I guess I just never thought of us being the premarital counseling sort of people. I'm scared!

Monday, May 07, 2007

What Can Go Wrong?

With a tight schedule, it works best for me if everything goes according to plan. That pretty much never happens! While I did make it to my water aerobics class (that I love!), the rest of my day went according to some haphazzard unintentional mess. My student sent me a text while I was serving up ice cream floats for the first day of teacher appreciation week... to Buddy Holly! When I finally got around to checking it, it said, "We don't need to meet today because I didn't go to school." I've spent a better part of this year instilling in this student the need to be responsible, keep his commitments, practice some common courtesy! I can see it's sinking in.... at least the part about "common courtesy" - I mean giving me 30 minutes notice when you're supposedly home all day is a great improvement over just not showing up!

Anyway, the next hour and a half of my day was spent dissecting the life of a repeating senior. Email is the greatest thing since sliced bread - for real! The truth? He went to school until third period, where he found out his notebook is due tomorrow. Not bothering to take home the list of assignments needed for a complete notebook (several of which he is missing), he took of early, which in his book means he did not attend school at all I guess. That means science, math and most of US History don't count. He only had one more class! Unfortunately, the other myth I've been chasing all year with this particular student is the one that if you aren't there for it, you don't have to do it!! I guess he was hoping to slip out before the notebook checkup was actually "announced"?? Luckily, the internet has provided a way of escape for his tutor and teacher, who kindly posted everything publicly online, so now everyone has access to it! Not that it will get done, but there is no excuse now!

Probably the best part was when my student texted me (after ignoring my call and text for an hour!) to let me know we could meet tomorrow. At least I know he doesn't read my blog!! I had to let him in on my little secret - I actually have a life outside tutoring him! I know, it's crazy and I'm a wild woman, but I have responsibilities and I take them seriously, which is part of the reason I have such high blood pressure. Doesn't that sound like something one might want to aspire to?

Anyway... I left that mess and ran over to Target, the arch nemesis of my purse, and did a little more shopping for Teacher Appreciation. I had to make a side trip to Staples because Target didn't have what I was looking for, just lots of other things I had no idea I needed until I saw them! Since Dick's Sporting Goods was right next store to Staples, I meandered in there to look for aqua shoes - my feet need a little break from all that water aerobics! No luck....

I'm now home, should be getting ready for a large Bible study group coming over tonight. It's going to be tight! Kt's piano teacher just arrived - glad I remembered that! Em is playing with the Little People I asked her to clean up, nothing new there! Dinner? Oh yeah... we have to eat, and I never even made it to the grocery store. Just something to add to my list for tomorrow.

Finally, my neighbor/co roommom called me to say that the teacher we have spent a couple weeks planning a bridal shower for, who I've spent hours and lots of $$ on, for this Friday!!! will not be in school that day. Hmmm... I mean, starting a week off like this, I always wonder, "What can possibly go wrong?" Well, just everything!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Trust and Obey

When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,
What a glory He sheds on our way!
While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
And with all who will trust and obey.


Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Not a shadow can rise, not a cloud in the skies,
But His smile quickly drives it away;
Not a doubt or a fear, not a sigh or a tear,
Can abide while we trust and obey.


Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
But our toil He doth richly repay;
Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
But is blessed if we trust and obey.


But we never can prove the delights of His love
Until all on the altar we lay;
For the favor He shows, for the joy He bestows,
Are for them who will trust and obey.


Then in fellowship sweet we will sit at His feet.
Or we’ll walk by His side in the way.
What He says we will do, where He sends we will go;
Never fear, only trust and obey.


~John Sammis

"Oh Lord Almight, blessed is the man who trusts in you." Psalm 84 11 - 12

I found this hymn on this website. I like this site because there is always a little history behind the hymn. I should have known that there would be some connection between this hymn and Moody. It was one of my dad's favorites and he spent a year at Moody Bible Institute. It was the first hymn that came to my mind when I was thinking of a favorite tonight.

Growing up Baptist, it seemed that I've gotten used to singing (or remembering) only certain verses. You see, when the pastor or worship leader would begin a song, they would tell you which verses you would sing. Sometimes, it would even be up on the little board that held the page numbers of the hymns! Because my father was the organist, I sometimes got to change those numbers. Oh, the perks - hehe!

I have found that in recent years, while I've been meandering around hymns that I loved, I wish I knew more of the verses. They are filled with little wise tidbits, especially Fanny Crosbie's!! Many times my favorite verse is the second to last - I don't know why. Just some wisdom that I never had heard before.

In this hymn, I think that is true as well. Sometimes we don't know what is pleasing to Him until we are able and willing to give up everything to find out! Maybe those things blind us to his pleasure, or they distract us from His amazingly good and loving intentions. Dangerous are the things of the world that entrap us in such a way that are distanced from what is truly good. A good thought to start off my week!

One Down

And the rest of the week to go! This is the week where I swear I will never overcommit myself ever, ever again!! Next week is the week I forget that I said that - bad me!

Just to give you a brief idea about how overwhelmed I am - someone this morning caught me in church to ask me if I would commit to teaching for one month this summer in the Kidzone and I almost burst into tears. Don't say I didn't warn you!!

Today we hosted our Hungary team and a missionary family that will be at the conference we are serving at this summer. It was amazing!! A great connection, a wonderful meeting and we got to ask a bunch of questions that have already started accumulating in our minds about this summer. I think God has really pulled a lot of things together for me so far - I'm just waiting for the first clincher... I know it's right around the corner, correct??

So, the meeting didn't come off without a lot of prep - yup, food for 15. Lasagna, garlic bread, salad and Tiramisu that T had to purchase from The Cheesecake Factory - it was awesome, especially because I did not have to make it!! The Lasagne and salad, yes, some labor was involved, not to mention cleaning the house. My feet hurt.

For this week, hold your head before it starts spinning: Teacher Appreciation Week, which involves making a cover for Katie's teacher's book, sending in daily gifts for teachers, aides, secretaries, etc, and a shower that my co-roommom and I are doing Friday for Em's teacher involving work I will not mention.... on top of that and all the volunteering it involves, we are having Bible Study here tomorrow night - cleaning and dessert, women's Bible study celebration Tuesday - make a cake, our second to last Daisy meeting on Wednesday that I'm in charge of, figuring out what cute Mother's Day craft I can have my Mother's Day Out kids do for Friday, get all the shower stuff together, and try to see Steven Kellogg on Friday after I work. I'm also still hoping to go to water aerobics, tutor and volunteer at school. Can I do it all? I honestly don't know, but the next person who asks me to do one more thing, don't be surprised if I implode right in front of you!

I think tonight might be a good night to read some Psalms, remember some hymns, go to bed!

Friday, May 04, 2007

House Rules

I know I've stated these rules on many occasions, but clearly I am just not assertive enough to stand by them. The rule of the house is that we don't host if only one person does all the work around here. At this point in time, the help is scarce and we have 12 people coming for dinner on Sunday (still no menu has been decided upon!) and our Bible study on Monday, a number for which I have no idea, considering someone informed me Wednesday night they are "visiting" our Bible study. I think I need a housekeeper, because I'm off to an all day crop tomorrow and we all know what means! When I return home, the house will look twice as bad as it does right now! YIKES! I'm tired just thinking about it.

Steven Kellogg is Coming!

I mentioned last week we were having a special author come to our school, and now I'm telling you - it's Steven Kellogg! You may think I'm overreacting, but he's seriously my favorite children's picture book author. He is an incredible illustrator and his stories that he writes are excellent. I already have several books signed by him and I'm taking the rest of them in next week, although I'm doubting he'll have time to sign them.

I'm much more excited that my girls will get to meet him. He's actually from Connecticut, so he's been to my mom's school a few times (that's where I've had my books signed). He agreed to make a special trip down to Maryland - he doesn't travel far much anymore - because our librarian, Mr. B, called and begged him to come as he's retiring this year. I've been looking forward to this visit all year!

Just so you know... he'll be at the girl's school (if you live near us or know us, let me know if you need this info) next Friday, May 11, all day! I believe he's sticking around until 5 pm. During the day, he'll be presenting 3 sessions. There will be a table where you can purchase his books, which he typically signs with a small illustration, although I'm not sure he'll be able to do that for all of them.

I'm so excited!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

High Maintenance?

I don't agree with that part... everything else sounds strikingly familiar! (OK - maybe not ALL of it!)
You Are a Club Sandwich

You are have a big personality. It's hard for anyone to ignore you!
You dream big. You think big. And you eat big.
Some people consider you high maintenance, but you just know what you want... and when you want it.

Your best friend: The Tuna Fish Sandwich

Your mortal enemy: The Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich

The Fractured Prune

Today, I participated in a field trip I was finally "chosen" to chaperone. I am never chosen for the good ones - theater, museum, aquarium - then again, they are few and far between! Instead, I get "chosen" to hike a mile to the local donut shop!!

Anyway, I figured it was worth mentioning on here because I'm completely impressed with a tiny donut shop that will agree to take the time to show almost 90 third graders, their teachers, chaperones and aides how they make donuts, run a business and then teach them to dip their donuts AND let them all dip their own donut as a treat. All that for the small price of $0. Yup, that's no typo, it's a big fat zero, zip, nada, nothing!! I mean, I would have paid $1-2 and thought nothing of it, but no, they charged nothing. I guess that's why we walked! That, and to burn off the donut (which I did not choose to partake of - aren't you proud of me!)

Anyway, if you have a Fractured Prune near you, you might stop in and support a place that so graciously supports our children and education. Their donuts aren't half bad either!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Blog Break!

Wow! Has it really been over a week since I have posted? OK, maybe not a whole week, but it sure feels like it. Sick kids do that to me. I spent 3 hours at the pediatrician last Wednesday, but only a very tiny, minute fraction of that time was spent in the presence of a doctor! How pathetic. I spent 1/6 of that time sorting out an insurance issue (the new insurance company put down our enrollment date as Kt's birthdate! She was so excited, not because she was only 6 weeks old, but because that date happened to be her best friend's birthday so now they are "twins"!), 1/6 of that time with an actual medical professional and the rest of that time waiting. And waiting. And waiting.

Fortunately, nothing life threatening, but it brought back memories from last May when 3/4 of our household were on antibiotics. Repeat! Kt had asthma, fever and then a return visit on Saturday resulted in another strep throat diagnosis. Em had a double ear infection - again! T was on antibiotics for an infected (and removed) tooth. That leaves me, who spent a week with a house full of sickos! I listened to them all complain about their meds, runny noses, aches and pains. For once, it was nice to be the healthy one!!

I did manage to get myself into a fitness routine despite everyone's ailments. I have been participating in a water aerobics class 2-3 times a week and love it. Unfortunately, the amazing instructor (who does a full aerobic work out, just in water! None of this arthritis joint stuff - just real aerobics!) is leaving May 15, so I've been dropping everything to participate in her classes before someone else takes over. I hope they are just as good.

My neighbor convinced me to try a cycling class, which I took with this same instructor. I believe cycling is a cross between ultimate self-torture and suicide. Really, I can sit on my sofa. Anything else right now feels like I'm sitting on a bed of nails - pointy side up! On top of that, (pun intended), I felt like my legs had been reduced to jell-O for the remainder of yesterday. Today they just feel like two lead pillars! The sad part? I didn't even barely make it through the whole class!! (I'm just so embarrassed to admit it!) I performed pathetically. If she said "hill" I saw "red light"! When she said "recovery" I thought "lunacy!". Will I go back? I don't know about that. Apparently, other instructors aren't so forgiving. Mine told me if they were climbing a mountain, it was OK if I was wandering aimlessly through the countryside. Luckily, my break on the park bench was met with a smile!

So, here I am, back in the blogosphere until the next round of sniffles, sore throats and cavities. Next week is Teacher Appreciation Week - help me now, before I am completely submerged and breathless in a sea of obligation! I'm so glad I love the girl's teachers this year - makes next week something to look forward to!