Saturday, December 30, 2006

So much for promises

I did a little work today... little being the operative word. I loaded the dishwasher and picked up the kitchen sort of. And that's it. I sat and watched a movie this afternoon and worked on the baby blanket. I did give in and play a game of RCT3. But it keeps messing up my computer and I decided to give it up for now. Josh made supper tonight. I helped give some instruction, but he's learning to do it finally.

I have to go to bed at a decent hour tonight since I have church tomorrow. I do have to get work done on the house tomorrow as I'll have company over tomorrow night. My friend Kirsten that I always spend New Year's with will be here. I've decided that instead of going to a lot of trouble and cooking something or making appetizers and such that we're just going to go out to eat and then come back here for sparkling wine and other drinks until the clock strikes 12:00.

I'm not making any resolutions since it would be pointless for me to do so. I don't keep them unless I have a very good incentive and I have nothing like that at the moment. Sure, I need to lose weight, but I am not dedicated enought to lose it right now. I've already set in motion my plan to be debt free so that's not a resolution.

I don't think there's any point in a year in review because my life has only consisted of my job and Church. The highlight of my year was my confirmation in April. Other than that it's been work, work, work, cleaning the house, work, paying bills, speech tournaments, and work. Don't believe me... read the archives.

Hi! My name is Annabel

and I am a coaster game addict. (Everyone replies "Hi Annabel") O.k. I don't know if this really is how AA meetings work, but I am forbidding myself to play it today until I get some things done around the house. I have become the epitome of laziness. I sat in my recliner most of the day yesterday playing the game. I got annoyed any time I had to get up for something... phone would ring, dogs needed something, had to cook dinner.... But just so you know I'm really pretty good at it. I've now accomplished about 6 levels.

So in other news... no snow yet. It's cold and there's frozen moisture on my car windshield, but no actual snow. I'm still debating whether or not I believe the weather forcast. The t.v. shows we're under a winter storm warning. But it's always me an my big mouth... I'm sure I'll eat these words later.

I may have to get out at some point today. We're set on food, but the animals are running out... imagine that. Please somebody give the new dog a home! If I get a chance, I'll post another video showing how playful she is.

Well, it's lunch time and I'm going to go find something to eat and then maybe start cleaning the kitchen. But I'm NOT playing RCT3!

Friday, December 29, 2006


I bought this game (technically for Josh) probably last Christmas or maybe even the one before. We never played it because none of our computers had the right video card for it. It is Roller Coaster Tycoon3. When I bought my laptop I made sure that I would have the right video card in order to play it. That was in March. I still didn't play it because I knew I would get addicted and wouldn't have time to play it. So just guess what I did yesterday afternoon? I installed the thing and started playing it. It's different from its predecessors in several ways, but the basic concept is still the same. And I'm hooked of course. I was up until almost 12:30 a.m. last night playing, only stopping to make supper. But it's my vacation and I can sit on the computer all day if I want to darn it!

Well, Andrew, the winter weather we were supposed to get has so far only been rain. We had a little bit of thunder last night, but it's just raining. If it gets colder, it will probably freeze and finally break off the tree branches that broke during the last winter storm.

Now I'm going to go install updates to my game and start playing.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

The Headless Dog

I took this video of my dog Roo a few years ago. I thought it was cute.

Meet the Rest of the Family

This of course is Josh. This was taken when the band went to the state marching contest and Josh was warming up. Isn't he handsome??

This is my aunt and my dad (and me). This was taken at my sister's wedding about a year and a half ago.

This is Max. He is the first dog that Richard (my ex) and I sort of adopted. He is very sweet, but doesn't like the camera. I'm not sure how I got this picture of him.

This is Roo. We got him as a companion to Max. Richard and I would be gone some weekends and we thought that Max could use a playmate. They became fast friends.

This is Lucy... so named because when she meows it sounds like an obnoxious Lucille Ball whine. My dad found her and couldn't keep her and asked us if we were interested in taking her. I left it up to Richard and he said yes. Little did we know, she was pregnant and had three kittens. Tux (my cat that died over Thanksgiving) was one of her kittens.

This is Tecko (Tee-koh). He is technically my dad's cat, but I inherited him with the house. He's a pretty good cat, but does whine a lot when he wants something.

This is Mollie. She appeared on my doorstep in April of 2005. She actually came shortly before I went to Austin to break up with Marty. I thought she was sweet.... little did I know. She's really kind of annoying. She thinks she's top dog and is very jealous.

This is the (hopefully) visiting dog which has now been named Oreo. I would like to find a good home for her as I can't afford to feed her along with the other three. Josh discovered her late one night when I was gone to a speech tournament or something. She came to our door and Josh let her in... and she's been here for about two weeks now. She's very rambunctious and friendly.

Well, this is the zoo family. I don't have pics of my brother, sister, or my dad's girlfriend yet. I'll post some of them if I can find them.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Go ahead... give it a try!

Create your own friendquiz here

Look a video!

I've jumped on the You Tube bandwagon. Here's a brief video showing 3 of the now 4 dogs. The new dog (who I think will be called Oreo) is the big black one. Max is the grey dog and Roo is the tan one. Mollie isn't seen in this video, but I'm sure I'll show more now that I know how to do this whole video thing. I've got to go through my old camera videos and see what else I have to show. I'm sure I have some great coaster videos.

Andrew's Inspiration

I was inspired by Andrew's blog where he is posting pictures taken with his new camera that he got for Christmas. My camera is about five years old, but I still love it. It is a Canon Powershot G2. The only thing I don't like about it is that it limits you to 30 second videos. Here are some pics that I took today:

Bag of Rosaries that I've made. I took them to my aunt's house so that she could pick whichever one she wanted. I think I'm going to put the rest up on a website and try to sell them. That will be one of my Christmas break projects.

This is the baby blanket that I am crocheting for my brother's baby. It is a boy and his name will be Timothy James. He's due to arrive some time in January. Hopefully I'll have it finished by then.

This is the computer backpack that I bought for myself with the Christmas money that my dad gave me. I'll get to use it when I go to Orlando in two weeks. I can't wait!

This is the set of pots & pans that I got for Christmas from my aunt. I can't wait to use them!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Staying an extra day

Well, I never heard back from Bret so I assume he either didn't get the email I sent or was just too busy. Maybe some other time. Josh and I are staying an extra day and will head home tomorrow morning. This afternoon we went to Chili's. I had chicken & shrimp with loaded mashed potatoes & rice. Afterwards we went to Target so Josh could spend his gift card. He got an dress shirt for himself. Next we went to Best Buy. I finally decided what I should spend some of my Christmas money on. I bought myself a laptop backpack. I've been needed a new laptop case. My old one that I used for work is too small for my new laptop. When I've traveled, I've put it in just a regular backpack and I know that's not padded enough. I'm very excited about it. It's one of things I've wanted but wouldn't ever buy for myself because it wasn't absolutely necessary to have... more of a luxury item so to speak. I spent $30 on it and then another $15 on a Schoolhouse Rock DVD that has all the old songs from the Saturday morning bits. You remember those don't you? Conjunction Junction... Electricity... Three is a magic number... Josh talked me into it. He really wanted it and wouldn't buy it for himself as he's still debating what to spend his Christmas money on. He thinks he wants the iPod but isn't certain which one. He did buy himself a jump drive. They had a 1GB on sale for $20. He wants to be able to back up his novel and such. Well... he's anxious for me to get out of here so I'll head out. I'll post probably after I get back home tomorrow.

A nice break

It has been so nice to sleep in the past several days. I guess despite the fact that I'm generally busy, I am still deep down a lazy bum. I do love to sleep. I slept in until about 9:30 a.m. Texas time. We're going into town in a little over an hour to go have lunch at Chili's and see my sister. I am taking her presents to her. She is going on a cruise next week. I am so jealous. That is something I still want to do some day.

I still haven't decided if we're heading back today or not. My friend Bret still hasn't contacted me, but I haven't checked my phone yet since I can't get a signal in the mountains here. I'll check it when I get to town and then decided if we're going to head back or not. If not, we'll leave tomorrow morning. I do enjoy visiting my aunt, but I still miss my own bed and my own stuff.

Last night we watched The Producers. My aunt and uncle hadn't seen it yet. I thought it was one of the funniest movies I'd seen in a long time. When we get back to town, my friend Kirsten, her dad, Josh and I will probably go to the movies. For several years it was a tradition to go see the Lord of the Rings movies but now we'll have to figure out what else is showing that seems interesting. I wasn't a huge fan of the movies... they were alright, but not something I'd watch over and over. Josh hasn't decided what he's going to spend his money on yet. He wanted an iPod so he may get that.

I so glad my aunt finally came into the digital age. Now I can post and check my email when visiting. I used to go through internet withdrawals every time I would visit. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

Well, I'm here in Albuquerque patiently waiting for the turkey to be finished. My aunt is making mased potatoes right now and my job will be to finish the salad. We got in around 2 a.m. last night. The last hour of driving was hard. I was really tired. I could have had Josh drive, but he'll drive on the way home tomorrow. We actually had a few snowflakes falling when we left last night. The Christmas Eve Mass was really wonderful. We actually had a very packed Church. It was awesome. I did get my voice back so I could sing.

I got up around 8:45 this morning and by 9:30 Josh was chomping at the bit to open his presents. He didn't get much in the way of packages because he said he wanted cash. I gave him a DVD (Pirates of the Caribbean) and a book (Next by Michael Crichton) and then a $100 bill. He also got $50 from my dad and $50 from my aunt so he has more money than me!

I got $100 from my dad, a bottle of wine, bookstore card & game from my friend Kirsten, and my aunt gave me a new set of pots & pans which I've really been needing.

We may be leaving tomorrow but I'm not sure yet. I was hoping to get to see my friend Bret & his wife while they're in town, but may not be able to. I found out too late that they had a thing on Saturday afternoon for friends. He posted information about it on his blog but I didn't read it until 11:00 that night. I was hoping he would have called or something. I've emailed him and he still hasn't responded. Oh well. I guess I can't do anything about it.

Well, I better go make the salad. Hope everyone is having a wonderful Christmas!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

My Favorite Toys

This is in response to Rich's blog. I had a lot of great toys when I was a kid. I'm not sure I can pick a favorite, so I'll just list a few of them.

Big Wheel - I loved riding this thing. Unfortunately it was what caused my unfortunate accident when I was four. I was hit by a car and broke my neck while playing on it.
Light Bright - That thing where you put colored light pegs in holes and create pictures.
Little People - My cousin and I loved playing with the little people. We had the Castle, house and cars and different pieces here and there. I also had this wooden set of blocks that were not for the little people but I used to create apartments and garages etc.
Barbie - I got my first Barbie when I was around eight. I had the superstar Barbie with the arms that were bent, a boa and pierced ears. I had a friend that had the Dream House and we would spend hours playing Barbie. I also had a Barbie Head doll that you could apply makeup to and fix her hair. I didn't have a Ken doll, but I did have a Shaun Cassidy. (Hunka-hunka)
Playdough - I had the Fuzzy Pumper Barber Shop. It was great fun until I left the playdough out and it got hard.
Whee-Lo - I don't know what it is about this, but it was mesmorizing. In fact, I found one a few years ago at Cracker Barrell and had to buy it.
Paint spinner - I don't remember the official name of this, but it was cool. You put a card down and it would spin around really fast and then you added paint and it spun the colors on the card. You added different colors and got a really cool design.
Record player/Jam Box - Music was always a big thing as a kid and I remember playing records all the time. Eventually I graduated into tapes when I got my first jam (boom) box.
Bicycle - I remember that I had a hard time keeping a working bike. My big brother would take them apart and never put them back together. Finally in the sixth grade I got probably my 4th bike and my parents forbade him from messing with it. In fact I once had to change a flat tire and although he offered, I wouldn't let him do it because I feared I'd never see it again. I rode all over the neighborhood on that bike. No wonder I was so skinny!
Intellivision - Video game console that came after Atari. The graphics and game capabilities were far superior for it's time.

So my questions for you blog readers is... what were your favorite toys as a child? Was there something you always wanted but never received?

For me, I always wanted the Domino Rally game. I never got it. I'm still disappointed.

Just for Fun

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Her Most Serene Highness Lady Jennifer the Ambidexterous of Throcking by Hampton
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Ahhhhh sleep

It is so nice to have a day where I can actually sleep late. I woke up at 6:00 of course as my body is somewhat used to that, but I didn't let that deter me. I rolled over, petted the cat and went back to sleep. I was really awake a little after 8:00 but I didn't actually get out of bed. But now I'm up and ready to slowly get some things done, but mostly take it easy. I think I'm feeling better. (It's amazing what actual rest can do) My voice is close to normal although I'm still a bit congested. To do today:
Wrap presents
Clean the house somewhat
Last minute shopping (I know.. but I thought of some last minute things of course... but I'm NOT going to the mall...the traffic was a nightmare yesterday and I didn't actually go to the mall, just a shop near it.)
Go to Mass at 5:00 so I don't have to go in the morning and then again at night. (That means I can sleep in again :)
Visit my friend Kirsten & exchange gifts. Josh is also supposed to give her dad a CD of some of his music so he can help him with his compositions. (He's a now retired music composition professor)
Pack for my trip to Albuquerque
Decide whether we're going to leave after Mass and get there late or leave early Christmas morning.

So that's the agenda for today... along with some t.v., sitting in the chair, and maybe a nap.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Finally a break!!!

I better enjoy this while I can. After school starts again I won't have another break until Spring Break. Kids left school at 11:30. I had to stick around until one. I had to figure out how to get my trophies for our upcoming tournamnet ordered after having issues with the company not faxing me the previous year's order and then not being able to fax something to them. Hmmm... maybe it's the fax machine. I finally talked to an actual person that was willing to help me. I was able to email my order in and she called me back with a confirmation that it had been received. Whew!

Now I'm home and I think I may rest just a little bit before heading out for last minute shopping like everyone else. I don't have much to do, but I do have some rosaries to finish and need to pick up a few more things.

I still have a cold or whatever, but I think I'm improving. My voice is still hoarse, but not as bad as yesterday. Well... time to go take it easy.

Thursday, December 21, 2006


I went to choir rehearsal tonight but I couldn't sing because I barely have a voice at the moment. My ex-husband would love it though. It's that low raspy voice that he finds very sexy. I'm just irritated by it. I really want to be able to sing on Christmas eve. I ended up just being the "ears" and listening for balance.

This afternoon was a total waste. The kids were finished around 11:45. I had to wait until 1:15 for the special lunch they had for us. It was o.k., but nothing to write home about. We got our annual Christmas gift. This year it was a candle in a large ornament shaped holder. It smells pretty good. So at 2:00 I have absolutely nothing to do until 3:45 when I can "officially" leave. Luckily I had gone to Walmart earlier and I picked up a 4.88 movie (Pleasantville). I just popped it into my DVD player and I watched it while finishing up the crocheted throw that I was making a friend of mine for Christmas. I got the throw done and by the time the movie was over it was time to come home.

Once I got home I finished the rosary I was making for Father Phan and finished the box I was going to put it in. I laid down to rest around 6:00 and had to get up at 6:45. During that time Josh rescued a bird from the dogs so now we have another guest to deal with. I know, I know... but I'm an animal lover and I can't help it. It's in my blood. But now I'm too tired to think. I'm going to go to bed and just try to survive the last day tomorrow. Luckily we can leave by 1:00.

Just two more days

But I'm not counting. O.k. yes I am. I feel horrible today. I'm losing my voice and now I'm sporting a headache and I'm congested. But I can't afford a day off so I'm here at school. I have another hour before the kids arrive. Because of the weather we have been starting an hour late for the past three days. The roads really weren't bad today. There were a few slick spots in town, but it's not bad. I didn't let Josh drive the past two days. Maybe I'm over-cautious, but I'd rather he didn't get the lesson of driving on ice just yet. I haven't posted much lately as I feel there just hasn't been much to say. My shopping for the most part is done. I have a few more things to pick up and I can do that either Friday afternoon or on Saturday. I didn't put up my tree this year or send out cards (not that I ever send cards... I have boxes because I have the intent, but just never get around to it.) I'm losing my voice and I'm supposed to have choir rehearsal tonight. I just hope it returns by Sunday. I really want to sing for the Christmas Eve Mass.
I have been going to bed early the past few days. I think my ragged running is catching up with me. I am ready to just sleep in and be a lazy bum for a few days. We still have a visiting dog. One of Josh's friends is interested in her, but I don't know if his mother will let him have her. She is very sweet, but she is in puppy mode so she likes to chew things, she's not house broken (despite the fact she can use the pet door), and she eats more than probably my other three dogs combined. I hope I find a home for her soon. I know I'm not keeping her because I haven't given her a name though she probably thinks her name is "No!"
I finally got caught up on my grades. I have been reminded as to why I am NOT an English teacher after grading 38 typed oratory speeches. I guess kids think I'm stupid or something because about 5 or 6 of them plagiarized their speeches. Of course they had an ENTIRE semester to work on them, but perhaps that just wasn't enough time. I'm reading what they turned in and for some reason I know that they're not capable of using certain (proper) language and fancy words. I type in one of their sentences in google and sure enough I find websites where they cut and pasted the information.
Well, I guess I've rambled on enough. I think I'll go find some crackers or something to munch on.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Christmas Meme

1. Egg nog or hot chocolate? Although I am quite fond of rum, I have to vote hot chocolate on this one.
2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? wrapped - unless it's really big and then I hide it and make them find it.
3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? colored

4. Do you hang mistletoe? what would be the point? No date in over a year, no single males coming through my door...
6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? I loved it when my mom made her homemade cinnamon rolls on Christmas morning.
7. Favorite holiday memory as a child: Probably the year I got a jam box and the Olivia Newton John "Physical" album for Christmas.
8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? 2nd grade. I realized that Santa's presents were wrapped in the same wrapping paper as all the other non-Santa presents.
9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Yes, that was the rule... one gift on Christmas Eve... but now I get so few gifts I just wait until Christmas day.
10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? what tree? I didn't put one up this year.... but when I do, I have lights and all the ornaments (except for a few) are music-related.
11. Snow! Love it or dread it? I like the look of it and if I have no place to go it's fine, but I hate when I have to get out and drive in it.
14. What’s the most important thing about the holidays for you? that we are celebrating the birth of Christ and it's a time to spend with family
15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? I don't have any particular favorite dessert associated with Christmas
16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? turkey dinner with all the trimmings
17. What tops your tree? an angel holding a harp (music themed of course)
18. Which do you prefer, giving or receiving? mostly giving, but I certainly don't mind getting gifts. When you get older, the less you get it seems... but I LOVE to give and I often try to make something special for others
19. What is your favorite Christmas song? What Child is This?
20. Candy canes: sure, why not.
21. Favorite Christmas movie? A Christmas Story. I am afraid to admit this... but I have never actually seen "It's a Wonderful Life". I've seen parts of it and know what it's about, but I've really never watched it.

Monday, December 18, 2006


It's cold here and I really hate the cold. We're getting freezing rain tonight so going to school in morning is going to be loads of fun. I'm washing my long johns so that I can stay warm tomorrow. I still have about 30 oratory speeches to read and grade, but I'm still finding I can't grade at home. I think I got through two of them this evening. I'm going to head to bed soon.
I don't have anything interesting or pertinent to say. I am just so ready for school to be out. I'm also quite ready for pay day tomorrow. I just hope the weather and roads aren't too bad by the end of school tomorrow.
My throat has started to feel scratchy and I fear that some kind of illness may be coming on. I really hope not. I just need to get through the next few days so that I can actually enjoy at least some of my break.
On the good news front, someone called yesterday about the dog. They didn't lose one, but they said they're interested in her. I told them I'd call them back in another day or so just to make sure the actual owners didn't call. I'll call them tomorrow and see if they're still interested.
Well, my bed is calling me. It's early, but I have a feeling I'm going to need to be ready early tomorrow morning.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Survived the Lock-In

I'm not sure how I did it, but I managed to stay awake all night and still drive home this morning. I saw something I very rarely get to see most mornings.... a sunrise. Usually I'm driving/riding in the other direction most mornings as the sun comes up. Once I got past the 4:00 a.m. mark, I got my second wind. The kids had a blast and we had more than enough to eat. I bought way too many pizzas, but they didn't go to waste as some kids took them home afterwards. We had all the snacks you could eat. We played Cranium and Battle of the Sexes amoung other games. Some kids did fall asleep, but we started cleaning up around 6:30 and were able to leave by 7:00. I got home around 7:45 and went straight to bed. I got about 4 hours of sleep before I had to get up and go back to Hereford. The students had a mini-festival amongst themselves so I was there from 1:00 until 6:00. Now I'm waiting for my dinner to finish (Taquitos in the oven). I'm going to eat, maybe watch some t.v. and definitely call it an early night. On the good side... I did get some papers graded and now I just have the oratory speeches to read. Ugh. That will be a chore that I have to complete in the next couple of days. Fortunately I have all my semester tests ready to go.
I have another visitor at my house. I don't know what it is about stray animals, but they seem to think my place is a pretty good place to go when they're lost. Maybe word has gotten around the neighborhood that I'm a sucker for lost pets. Well... we have a visiting dog and I insist on it being a visitor because I absolutely can't afford to keep her. I've placed an ad in the paper and am hoping the owners will claim her. If not, I have to find her a home. Anyone interested? I think she'll be a pretty good sized dog. She's medium sized right now but I think she's still kind of a puppy and has huge claws. She has some kind of "bull" mix in her I think. She is very sweet, friendly and playful. I do hope I can find a good home for her if the owners don't come forward (which would be a terrible thing in my book). I can't believe she doesn't have a collar or anything. I'll post a picture of her tomorrow.
I'm feeling thoroughly exhausted. At least I think I'll sleep really well tonight. Well, I need to get some laundry started. I'll try to report back tomorrow if I have anything to say.

Thursday, December 14, 2006


I've finished making the two semester tests that I needed to make. Now I need to create two study guides and get everything printed. My grading is caught up except for the oratory speeches that I need to grade. That will be like grading 5-6 page essay papers. I guess maybe I can get some of that done during the lock-in Friday night.

Yesterday I got home around 5:00 and decided to run to the store to get a couple of things. The church choir director called me right when I got to the store and asked if I could come to rehearsal that evening. For some reason I thought that it started at 6:30, but it actually started at 5:00. So I quickly got the things I needed, ran home, grabbed my clarinet and headed out. I was at rehearsal until after 7:00. I came home and made some rice to go with my leftover cashew chicken (which I'm having today for lunch as well.) I just felt exhausted and I ended up going to bed shortly after 9:00. The phone rang at 9:45 so I had to rush and pick it up. My aunt called to find out if I could go to the Shot Show in Florida to work for my uncle in January. Free/Paid trip to Orlando? Heck yeah!

I hope I make through the weekend... if so, I should be doing pretty well until Christmas break. Friday is our lock-in so I will be up all night for that. Then I'll get to come home and sleep for a few hours only to return to the school Saturday afternoon for a festival among just the speech students. Then I'll return home and sleep as late as possible on Sunday before going to church. Josh and I are playing at the 11:15 Mass.

Well, class is about to start so I better get ready. Sorry for no post yesterday. I wasn't feeling as verbose as I usually am.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

It's about time

Well, I'm finally caught up on my grading. I don't know what it is, but I just can't make myself grade papers at home. Day after day I take my bag home full of things to do and I don't get any of them done. I am by no means caught up with everything I need to do, but I do feel a sense of accomplishment in just getting the grading done. I'm still amazed at the number of students failing my classes however. I need to get my semester tests done and then hopefully I'll be on the home stretch. There's just so much to do and not enough time.

Well, I just wanted to give you a quick post during my lunch break since I didn't post last night and probably won't be able to post tonight. After school I have to rush home, then to the grocery store, then make my famous cashew chicken for the party. Maybe tomorrow I'll have more time... or not.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Out of the Loop

It seems like it's been forever since I've blogged although it's only been a couple of days. I have also missed reading my favorites and had to take some time to do that before posting myself. I'm still exhausted but overall we had a very good weekend.

We left around 9:30 for Lubbock on Friday morning. We got there and the bus driver took the long route to the restaurant, but we made it and the kids got their hamburgers & fried cheese that they hungrily anticipated. We then headed to the hotel. We checked in with no problem other than the water had been turned off because the were working on something. But that was no big deal since they just had to change and then get back on the bus. We made it to the tournament on time and my kids did an amazing job. We only took 14 students, but we had 26 entries in semi-finals and from there we had 21 of them in finals. The team won sweepstakes (again) and one of my students was a surprise as the top interper. (She beat another student on my team that generally takes that spot.)

It was a very late night for us. We didn't get to leave until 10:30. We got to the hotel at 10:45 and they decided to order pizza instead of going to a fast food place. Mine came rather quickly, but the boys pizza didn't arrive until midnight. Needless to say, we were all pretty tired on Saturday morning and my kids weren't as successful. They still did o.k., but we only ended up with 8 in finals.

My son Josh went with us and he is now qualified for state in oratory. I also have another student that qualified in the same event and then another two that got the points they needed in duet. One of my other students who did not want to comepete in foreign extemporaneous speaking (she usually competes in domestic, but is already qualified) ended up qualifying in that event as well. I entered her because they needed to make numbers for full qualification points. (Don't ask... it's confusing)

We got in very late. We didn't get to leave until around 11:30 after stopping at Wendy's for food. We got back to Hereford around 1:45 and I didn't get to bed until 2:30. I got up at 9:00 to go to church, but just felt exhausted. I picked up lunch after Mass and then I went back to bed. I slept another four hours. Now I probably won't be able to sleep tonight. I still have a million things to do. I didn't get a single paper graded this weekend. After my nap, I loaded the dishwasher because we had a mountain of dishes left undone. (Now it's down to the size of a hill.) I still have to go to the grocery store as Josh is finally going to cook! He's had this long-standing "thing" about not learning to cook until he gets his driver's license. Well, now that he has it, it's time! I have no idea what he wants to cook, but it will be his choice. That will be a nice change... Josh can start dinner (assuming we have clean dishes) from time to time.

So, grocery store, dinner, grade papers, do laundry (so I don't have to go to school naked tomorrow), clean out my car (I'm driving the carpool in the morning), figure out my lesson plan for tomorrow, and I'm sure there's more that I haven't thought about yet. Well, it's back to being busy as usual. I have a Christmas party on Tuesday, instrumental rehearsal on Wed., choir rehearsal on Thurs., Lock-in at the school on Friday, speech festival on Saturday afternoon. On top of that, I have to get trophies ordered for our tournament, create my semester tests, catch up on all my grading, and figure out a day to do my observation at school. I haven't finished my Christmas shopping so on the 20th (pay day) I will have to get that done as well. I'm ready for Christmas Break!!!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

full speed ahead

After a day of teaching at school I had to rush back home to pick up Josh from school and get to the driver's license office so he could get his license. All went well and he is now officially licensed... God help us. We then went to pick up his car from my dad's shop. He followed me home until I turned off to go to church. I had to go to the Vigil Mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception as it's a Holy day of obligation. After Mass we had choir rehearsal for over two hours so I didn't get home until about 9:40. I picked up a bite to eat before getting home, scarfed it down and then started a load of laundry. I still need to pack, but I think that I'll do it in the morning. I get to sleep in a little longer in the morning. I have a sub for all day tomorrow and I still have to get to the bank, but I don't have to leave the house until around 8:30.

We're heading to an overnight tournament tomorrow. We'll be in Lubbock for a swing tourney which is two tournaments in one weekend. I won't get back until late late Saturday night. That means no posts until some time on Sunday.

I'm glad to see that Andrew is back... you were very missed. Take care of yourself. I'm glad that you're wise enough to know when you should ask for some help.

Well, I gotta get to bed as I'm totally exhausted. Hope ya'll have a great weekend. See you on Sunday.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Just busy

Sorry I haven't posted in a few days. It's been busy. I did come down off my high after this weekend. Last night Josh had all-region band tryouts and he made first chair.

School has been very busy. I have so much to get done and it seems I'm not even making a dent. I'm starting to prepare for our speech tournament by getting the website information set up. I have learned quite a bit this year in creating web pages and such and although I'm still lost on several things, I'm figuring out many more. My observation is going to be tomorrow. I'm not worried about it. We're covering debate right now and tomorrow we're doing a mock public forum debate. I am so behind on paperwork and other stuff I don't know when I'll get it all done. At least I'm staying late at school tomorrow.

Josh and I tried to get his driver's license today, but the office closed at 5:00. He won't be able to get it until Thursday. I will have to leave right after school so we can get there early (despite it being open until 7:00) because I have to get back to go to Church by 6:00. Then we have choir practice. How long until Christmas break? You know what? We even have a tournament over Christmas break!

Well, I don't have much more to say tonight. I'm still busy. My house is falling apart again. I still haven't put up a tree as I've had no time. Maybe one of these days I'll get another break.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Beaming with Pride

Sometimes when you start feeling down and have those rough days, something great happens to turn it all around. It has been a very good day. The day came much too early, however. I got to bed around midnight last night after the tournament. This morning I had to get up by 5:30, leave by 6:00 and drive to Hereford to pick up my three debate students. I gave the other kids a break and let them meet at 8:00 a.m. instead leaving early with the debaters. Luckily there's a teacher that drives the bus for us once in a while and he's been great about letting me take my car and such. My students did VERY well at the tournament. We had 22 entries in finals. The team won first place sweepstakes AND two of my students won outstanding interper and outstanding speaker. On top of ALL of that... (I know you're amazed that there's more) Josh won FIRST place in oratory. He is almost qualified for state. He needs two more points which I think he might be able to get at the tournament next weekend. He is traveling with our team although he is competing for his school.

I was driving home tonight with the biggest grin on my face. I just couldn't help it. I am so very proud of my students and especially of Josh. I really needed this pick me up. I can't take much credit for it, but it doesn't change my level of pride in them.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Nothing to do

Well, that's not completely true. There are things to be done and things I should be doing, but I'm not doing any of them. I've packed my bag with lots of papers to be graded, I just don't feel like grading them right now. I cleaned off my desk and got my substitute information ready. (I'll be gone the last two class periods today.) I ate lunch. (Soup & salad) I went and got a candy bar for dessert. I checked my email. Nothing but spam. I filled out a form to teach a workshop for the next staff development in February. I figured there might be interest in digital cameras and since I do know some things about them, I figured why not. I still have an hour until my next class and I'm bored. I don't want to go anywhere because the roads in town are still very bad. I can't fill out any requisitions for next week because the secretary that handles them is gone and I need more forms. I'm feeling very cold right now. I didn't wear Long Johns today. Well, I'm going to go find something to do or just twiddle my thumbs. This will be the only update today and there probably won't be one tomorrow. I'll catch ya'll on Sunday.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Nothing to report

The rest of the afternoon seemed to drag today. I made it through and got home by 5:00. Choir rehearsal was cancelled so I took a brief nap, then made supper, and took it easy tonight. I did some laundry and watched t.v. It was quite nice. Tomorrow is a speech tournament. Luckily it's not too far (Amarillo). I don't think the roads will be a problem. The highways are clear, it's really just the streets in town that are horrible. They melted and refroze so they are just chunky sheets of ice.

And that's all the excitement here. I'm heading to bed.

What a day already!

I got up early this morning because I figured the roads would be bad because of the weather. The Amarillo area got about 5 inches of snow. I turned the t.v. on just in case school happened to be cancelled. Several schools were, included Josh's, but not mine. My principal did call me at 6:45 just as I was preparing to leave to let me know that we were starting an hour late. The roads in town were pretty snow packed. I had to stop and get gas this morning. (I knew I should have filled up last night.) Luckily I was smart and wore layers today. I have long johns on under my pants, an undershirt, a turtle neck, and a long sleeve denim shirt as well. Once I got on the highway, the road itself wasn't too bad, it was the visibility that wasn't great. There was blowing snow and kind of foggy mist all around. I took it a little slower, but drove about 50 mph. In Hereford, the streets were pretty bad. I got to school around 7:45. I decided to head to walmart because I was short on butter for the food I was making my students today and I forgot to bring dessert. I was going well until I got to a corner and I found myself stuck. My new car is much lower to the ground and just doesn't handle snow drifts very well. I got out and tried digging around the wheels and I was so thankful for the extra clothing and the boots I was wearing. I have some hiking boots that I bought about 3 years ago that I never wore. They more than paid for themselves today. Finally a good Samaritan from the Auto Zone store came and gave me a shove and helped me get unstuck. I went to Walmart and got the things I needed and came back to school. School didn't start until 9:20 so I piddled around in my room for a while. During 2nd period today I set up the table for the lunch this afternoon. During my 3rd period conference my TA (teacher assistant) and I went over to the Career & Technology building to use the kitchen. I put the stromboli in the oven and made the fettuccine alfredo. My student helped with the salad and washed dishes for me. We made it back right in time for lunch. The students really seemed to enjoy it. They got very full. I offered the leftover food to my principal and the office staff. (It never hurts to be nice to those people) They seemed to enjoy it as well.
So it's already been a busy day. I'm going to run downstairs and take some things to my car and then it will be time for my next class.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

3 Things

Borrowed this from Pipe Tobacco.

3 Things that scare me: stinging (flying) insects, scary movies, Rush Limbaugh

3 People who make me laugh: my students, Robin Williams, Mir (from Woulda Coulda Shoulda)

3 Things I love: Josh, my pets, music

3 Things I hate: vegetables, people that are dishonest, cold weather

3 Things I do not understand: men, politics, quantum physics

3 Things on my desk: Bills, a Bible, and several rosaries

3 Things I am doing right now: reading blogs, drinking a coke, listening to the t.v.

3 Things I want to do before I die: ride 600 different rollercoasters, visit Europe (especially Italy & Austria), fall in love (and be loved back)

3 Things I can do: play the clarinet, crochet, use photoshop

3 Things I cannot do: play the piano, lose weight, resist pasta (yes, I know the last two are indeed related)

3 Things you should listen to: Mozart, Olivia Newton John, the WTAMU symphonic band

3 Things you should never listen to: Rap Music, Hip Hop Music, Death Metal

3 Things I would like to learn: betters skills in designing web pages, Catholic Apologetics, Spanish

3 Favorite foods: Spaghetti, Cashew Chicken, Fettuccine Alfredo

3 Beverages I drink regularly: Coke, Water, Tea

3 Shows I watched as a kid: Sesame Street, The Electric Company, Happy Days

Still unfocused

Maybe it's the time of year, but I feel unfocused. I'm sitting here at lunch with a million things I could be doing and not doing a single one of them. But that's good news for my readers since now they will have a new blog entry to read.... or not, I guess it depends on what I write about.

I have papers to grade and I'm not grading them. I have lessons to prepare and I don't know where to begin. I am going to have my observation next week and I'm not even close to being ready. I'm not worried about it. One of the assistant principals is my observer and he's a very easy-going guy. I'll be teaching a debate lesson so it should be interesting.

It's getting cold here and I hate it. I HATE BEING COLD. Did I say that loud enough? I know my gas bill and electricity bill is going to skyrocket, but I don't care. My room at school is cold as well. The airconditioners aren't on... but the fans are and it's blowing the cold air from outside in my room which makes perfect sense in the winter. We are supposed to get a cold front in tonight with the possibility of snow tomorrow. I am not looking forward to it. I only like snow when I can stay at home curled up in front of the fireplace with nowhere to go and nothing to do. But mother nature never asked for my input on the matter.

Well, I've got another 30 minutes to sit and think about the things I should be doing. I really wish I could take a nap. I didn't sleep well last night. Tonight is RCIA class which I may or may not go to. I really want to, but I'm finding that my time is being stretched rather thin lately. I have to give Josh a parallel parking lesson when I get home, make supper, maybe go to class, then go to the store to the stuff for tomorrow's lunch. After that I have to prepare the stromboli so I can just put it in the over during 3rd period tomorrow. (One of the home-ec. teachers is my car pool buddy and I'm using the kitchen over there) At least I have laundry done and most of the dishes so I don't have to worry about that.

I haven't decided if I'm going to put up a Christmas tree this year. A large part of me is thinking that it's really just a big hassle and I don't want to mess with it. Another part of me thinks I should just suck it up and get into the Christmas spirit. We're not going to be spending Christmas here so I don't see the point really. I do love my tree and all my music-themed ornaments, but it's a lot of work that I just don't have time for. Maybe I'll compromise by just decorating around the fireplace. I don't know.. one more thing to consider.

This time of year is just a bad time in general. The month of November has been historically full of bad news. My best friend in the 8th grade died of a brain tumor in 1983. My mother died three years ago. Tux (the cat) died. Despite it having mine & Josh's birthdays, I've found that the month of November generally sucks. I think I'm ready for it to be over.

Well, I better go figure out something to do to at least be somewhat productive today... or not.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Christmas Music

I listened to a radio station on the way to work this morning. They were playing Christmas music. I noticed, however, in the hour that I listened (30 minutes there this morning and 30 minutes home) that not a single song was a traditional "religious" Christmas song. Has it gotten so bad that now people are even offended if a song has a spiritual reference? I happen to love the many traditional Christmas hymns. I don't much care for the modernization of some of them, but they didn't even play those. All I heard was things like "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas" and "Jingle Bell Rock." Those are o.k., but what happened to "Silent Night", "O Come All Ye Faithful", or "What Child is This?"
I'm sick and tired of the complaints of people being offended by hearing the words "Merry Christmas." Those same people probably enjoy time off for Christmas and getting presents etc. If you really don't like the holiday season, just deal with it. I would venture that there are many more that do appreciate this time of year and what it means. There is truly a spirit of Christmas this time of year, but unfortunately, there's also a lot of scrooges trying to destroy it.
My friend Andrew isn't "religious" per se, but I'm sure he's not going to huff and puff if someone wishes him a "Merry Christmas." I just wish all those people that try to make a big stink over the holiday would simply get a life. Now let's hear some REAL Christmas music.

Monday, November 27, 2006

I should cook more often

Because of the financial situation this month, I'm trying to make sure I don't overspend and staying on a budget. That means no fast food or restaurants and so I have to actually cook. I don't mind cooking really... I don't care for the mess afterwards and I usually don't have the time to cook, but overall it's not too bad. Tonight I made beef enchiladas and they were quite yummy if I say so myself. Luckily I'll have leftovers for lunch tomorrow since I didn't pick anything up for my lunches this week. This Thursday I have to cater a lunch to my top five students in the Stock in Talk sales. I will be making them Stromboli, Fettuccine Alfredo, Salad and Dessert. It should be quite yummy. I can have my friend Bret and my ex-husband vouch for me in that.

It was another long day at school with not enough time to get everything done. I did make hotel reservations for our trip to Lubbock next weekend. Right now the trip is going to cost over $2000. It's a good thing they did so well with their fundraiser. I have papers to grade and I actually brought them home, but I know I'm not going to touch them. I don't know why I bother. I don't give my kids homework because I don't like it myself.

Well, I guess I better go do the dishes so they don't get as bad as before... especially since I have to do more cooking this week.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Continued freak magnet

I got this in an email today. What is it about me? Do any other women with a yahoo profile get this crap?

Hello cute
l read your profile today on Yahoo Member directory and l was so interested in you,so l decided to get in touch with you to know if youre really in need of a very serious relationship l will be so glad.ln my next mail to you l will let you know more about me.Dear,am in need of a woman to be with not only internet chating,l need a love in my life,am tired of loneliness.Each and everytime l try to express my feelings to women arround me,l will be feeling shy,l wont be able to talk infact l dont know why.Please bear something important in your mind which is l did not come to this site for fun or any other funny thing,l really know how much it pains to be lonely all these while infact l need someone l can be with,live with,talk to,touch and smile to.Am sorry if you know youre not ready for a real relationship please dont contact me,all l need is a very solid relationship that will lead to marriage at least,l wont mind living with someone from another country for the rest of my life if you want me to come to you and all l will do for you is to make you smile over and over again for the rest of your life so as to show appreciation for the great thing you have done for accepting me into your life and l promise l wont dissapoint you till death do us part l swear babe.l will tell you about myself after l read reply from you You can get in touch with me
Take Care

I've decided that maybe it's not in the best timing to be in a relationship regardless of the fact that there are still no possibilities... although I'm so tempted to contact this guy who may very well be the answer to my prayers! (Sorry, needed a little sarcasm today.)

I was checking out information on financial aid for college. I know Josh is only a sophomore, but I want to make sure that he will get whatever aid he can. In looking over things, there's a good possibility that as a single parent with my income that the expected family contribution might be $0 based on FASFA. Hopefully that means that he will qualify for grants and possibly workstudy and with hopefully some scholarships, most of his college expenses will be paid for. As long as I'm single with a pitiful income, then perhaps that is a good thing. See, I'm already trying to look on the positive side of things. And as long a I have brother that can fix my plumbing... who needs a man anyways?

I don't have much else to tell today. I was pretty much a lazy bum. I slept in and got ready to go to Sunday School, but realized that we weren't having it today. I went to Mass at 11:15, ran by the grocery store, then came home and had some lunch. I started watching the Monk marathon, then took a nap, then watched more Monk, then cooked supper, then watched more Monk as I crocheted. The house isn't completely clean, but it's picked up for the most part. The laundry and dishes are done, so that's the most important thing.

Well, gotta go watch more Monk.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Slow progress

I'm getting close but there's still a lot to do. I cleaned out my upper kitchen cabinets today. I have several canned goods that I need to donate to a canned food drive. I didn't tackle the lower cabinets yet. There's so much stuff under there that I'd rather put it off. On the good news front, my sink is fixed! Yay for my brother! He had to replace the entire faucet and he did it as my birthday present. Now I can start getting the dishes done. I need to mop, but I'm going to save that chore for last. The laundry is close to getting finished and I'm running out of room to put my clothes. I need to go through my closet at some point and clean it out. Again, another task to put off until later.
Now I'm getting hungry and I think I'll scrounge my kitchen for something to eat. Now that I've cleaned out the cabinets and the refrigerator, it's looking quite bare. I'm going to work on a menu for food this week as our budget is a bit lean this month. The rest of my Christmas shopping will have to wait until next payday... 4 days before Christmas.

A Saturday with no Obligations?

Well, I feel better after a night's sleep. I'm still sad, but just moving on. The laundry is almost done; now I need to focus on the rest of the house. I thinking of actually taking a shower today and putting on clothes. I do have to take Josh up to the school to leave for the football game.

I can't believe it's already Saturday. At least I don't have a speech tournament today. I haven't been as productive as I'd like, but I guess it's understandable given the circumstances and my mood.

I don't know what else to write this morning. I have nothing to share.

Friday, November 24, 2006


I feel restless tonight. I've been steadily doing laundry today but not much in the way of house cleaning. I cleaned all the pet beds because the vet said that Tux's disease was contagious to other cats. Although the other two aren't showing signs and they have a hearty appetite, I wanted to be cautious.

I just don't know what to do with myself. I'm just sitting and watching t.v. being depressed. I'm wearing the same clothes as yesterday that I slept in. I haven't gotten out of the house at all. I have nowhere to go. I have no friends to call up and visit. I'm going to be short on money this month because of the vet bill so I can't go anywhere that would cost money. Josh has gone to a friend's house and I really feel alone at this moment. Yes, I miss my cat and that's part of it, but I hate the fact that I really am alone.

I do appreciate my wonderful blog friends that have left comments. I also appreciate my ex for calling me as well as Patrick.

I used to have these fantasies about leaving my life and starting new somewhere else. Of course I never had the gumption to act on it and have been tied here because of Josh. Is it weird though as an adult to sometimes wish you could run away from home?


Tux didn't make it. The vet called a while ago and said that they had lost her and that she did have FIP. She will be greatly missed.

Wading through piles of Laundry

I'm not sure that my blog readers could possibly understand the enormous amount of laundry that must be done. I would take a picture, but then be thoroughly embarrassed so I will refrain. But I am making progress. I did about 4 loads yesterday and I'm actually folding and putting away stuff. My problem isn't really putting things in the washer and then the dryer, but it's the taking it out, folding it, and putting it away that I have issues with. Sometimes it just goes into a basket (if I can find an empty one which is rare despite having approximately 300 of them) and sometimes it sits on top of the dryer until I need something and I find it and throw it back in the dryer to de-wrinkle it. Isn't that how you're supposed to do it? Yes, I've heard of irons, but this takes much less work on my part.

I forgot to mention the other day that the hot water on my kitchen sink is broken. The handle was having issues for a while and it got to the point where I could not shut it off at all. I had to turn it off under the sink. (Thankfully I knew what to do and didn't panic -- too much.) So yesterday I washed some pans in cold water. I can't run my dishwasher because I think that the hot water valve under the sink has to be open for it to work. But luckily the dishwasher was pretty much loaded and I added a few more dishes so those waiting to be washed in the sink aren't overwhelming. My brother is going to fix it tomorrow. Luckily, he is off until Monday so he will hopefully have the time to help me out.

Today I actually slept past 9 a.m. I'm sure it helped that I took a tylenol p.m. I'm feeling better about my cat and am remaining optimistic. I've prayed to St. Nicholas of Tolentino (patron saint of sick animals) and St. Francis of Assisi (patron saint of animals) for their intercessions and am now leaving it in God's hands.

Well, I better quick slacking off here and get more laundry done. Only about 12 more loads to go... give or take a few.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Non-turkey thanksgiving

I like Josh's idea... since Thanksgiving is an American holiday, we should have a big juicy steak as our centered meal instead of turkey. I didn't exactly have a juicy steak, but lunch was good and filling. I had bourbon chicken, a beef enchilada, rice, mashed potatoes & gravy, salad, chicken fried steak (with more gravy) and then dessert (apple cobbler and ice cream). It was more than enough. Yes, they had turkey, but I guess I just wasn't in the mood. Usually I want turkey when it's home cooked with all the trimmings, but it's been a while since I've had a traditional Thanksgiving. This was our first Thanksgiving all alone but surprisingly, I wasn't bothered by it. It really is just another day.

I took the required after dinner nap and now I'm getting motivated to get some laundry done. I think I need a large coke though. I think I'll run to Sonic and get a coke and then get my butt in gear. I guess Tux (the cat) is doing o.k. The vet said he wouldn't call as long as things were stable so I guess no news is good news. I just hope she starts eating again. I guess it's time to get busy.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


I took my cat to the vet. I found one open today and the potential prognosis is not good. She may have FIP which is basically fatal. The problem is that a blood test for it has to be sent to the lab in order to diagnose it. The lab was closed today and will be closed tomorrow and so we probably won't have results until Monday. She did test negative for Feline Leukemia and her other blood work wasn't bad other than being malnutritioned at the moment because she's not eating. I left her at the vet in order to get some fluids in her intraveneously. I held it together pretty well at the vet but lost it when I got in the car. I hate this. I love my pets dearly, but the problem with having pets is that you ultimately will lose them and that hurts. She is only four years old.

I spent $346 on the bill today if that tells you anything about how much my cat means to me. Normally my dad's vet takes care of our animals for free as my dad exchanges repair work with him. My dad was going to take her on Monday but since she wasn't eating I didn't think she'd make it until then. Please don't call me crazy for spending that kind of money on my pet. If you don't understand it, that's fine, but I know there are those out there that would do the same if it were their pet.

I'm having a hard time getting anything done today because I just feel depressed. I miss my cat. She wasn't the kind that would sit in your lap, but you knew that she loved you because of the way she would rub against you or always want to sleep near you. So much for a Happy Thanksgiving.

I should be more happy

that my break is here, but it's not a good day. My cat is sick and hasn't been eating for a while. I am now having to force feed her just to keep her alive until my dad can take her to the vet on Monday. I don't know what's happened, but all of a sudden she lost her appetite and I don't think she's eaten anything in the last day or two. I know that some people aren't animal people... and that's o.k., but I am a big animal person. My pets are part of my family and I'm sorry to say that if anyone ever asks me to choose between them and my pets... I will choose my pets. My cat isn't that old. She is only 4 years old and has been quite healthy until now. At first I didn't notice that she had lost weight because she's so fluffy, but you can really feel her bones when you pet her now and she's much lighter than she used to be. I'm worried that I may loose her and it breaks my heart. I went to Walmart this morning and got some baby food and all sorts of cat foods and milk to hopefully get her to eat. She won't do it on her own so I force fed her some thinned baby food and will keep doing it every two hours. That's all I know to do at this point.

I thought it would be great to sleep in this morning, but I was up at 4 a.m., again at 6 and at 7:30. I did keep going back to bed and finally gave up a little before 9. I loaded the dishwasher and am waiting for the water to heat back up before I start it. I will slowly get the cleaning done, but I'm just not in the mood right now.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Posting now since I won't have time tonight

I don't have much to tell. I'm working on a second website for my basic speech classes but am frustrated with the template because it won't let me do what I want to do with it. For lunch I had a ham and turkey sandwich, chips, yogurt and a pepsi with lime. I'm still debating whether or not I'm going to eat the swiss cake roll I have chilling in my fridge. I am still frustrated with my students that aren't passing my class. I can't believe their laziness especially when they have class time to work on their assignments.

As soon as school is out, I'm heading home, picking up dinner and getting ready for the concert. I'm discovering it's quite fun to sing Handel's Hallelujah Chorus although there's no way I can reach a high "A" So I have to fake it a bit. I think I have a few students coming to the concert. I'm offering extra credit if they attend.

Have I mentioned how ready I am for Thanksgiving break? I am so ready to sleep in.

Well, class starts in another 15 minutes. I better go get ready.

Monday, November 20, 2006

O.k... Daily Updates it is

Thanks for all the comments. It really is o.k. if you don't comment because you have nothing to say.. that's the way I am most of the time. I just thought maybe I was totally boring you.

I am soooooo ready for Thanksgiving break. It's getting to that time of year where burn out can happen if you don't get a break.

I just ate a quick dinner and I have about 15 minutes before I have to leave to head to Amarillo for the choir rehearsal. In case I didn't get an email to you and you live in the area, I would like to cordially invite you to the Festival of Praise. It is a 200+ choir that is made up of choir members from area churches. It will be tomorrow (Tuesday 11/21) at 7:30 in the Globe News Performing Arts Center. It's also FREE. And there will be a reception afterwards so that means free food.

I caught up on grades today and got everything entered in the online gradebook. I am still amazed at the number of people failing my classes. Well, I'm not going to do them any more favors. I've already bent over backwards for them.

I have so much to do. After rehearsal I have to make cookies for the reception. Luckily I already have the dough that you just spoon onto the pan. I also have to figure out what to wear. I'm glad I went shopping this weekend. I have a new top to wear.

Well, my fifteen minutes are up. If I have time, I'll blog more tonight.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Just wondering

if I should not post daily. Although the readership numbers are still pretty good, the comments are lacking. I have my few regular commenters which is nice, and I know that I shouldn't measure my blog by the number of comments I get. I just think that my life is rather boring and my daily ramblings aren't worth mentioning. I'm not complaining. Life is fairly pleasant and going at an even keel right now. I really don't want things to be shaken up, but I also feel that I write out of obligation and not from anything even relatively important or interesting. The nice thing is, though, that if I don't post for a day or two, my faithful readers start worrying about me. I don't have much in the way of friends as you know and I don't talk to my family on a daily basis so if I fell off the face of the earth, my blog friends would be the first to notice. (Aside from the administration at my school wondering why I didn't call for a substitute)

I've noticed that a lot of people don't post daily any more. (Other than my good friend Jonathon who posts regularly which I appreciate very much) I'm disappointed sometimes because I look forward to what others have to say or how their day went and they haven't posted anything. I am guilty of not making much of an effort to post anything substantial but I do it because I know there are a few out there that still read regardless of what I have to say... interesting or not. However, I feel like I'm writing the same stuff day after day and you're probably tired of reading about the fact that my house is a mess, that I have laundry to do or that I'm going to a choir rehearsal. That's all my life is it seems.

So my questions to you readers are: Do you want me to keep writing daily reports no matter how boring it is? or would you rather I update less regularly only when I feel I have something more interesting to say? Please answer as a comment. You won't hurt my feelings (much) if you'd rather I didn't write daily. Just be nice and honest.

My Son and I

We had a nice day today. I went to early Mass this morning and then to class afterwards. I got home and heated up some leftovers for lunch but it wasn't quite enough. I worked on a baby blanket for my brother's baby that is due in January. Josh and I then headed to the mall around 1:00. We started looking for Christmas gifts for people. I had decided on a framed picture for my sister and her husband that I thought they'd like. I also got an empty photo frame collection for my aunt and I'll put some pictures of Josh in it for her. I got a children's music cd set for my 2nd cousin that is almost 3 years old. I got a cute baby outfit for my other cousin that is 6 months. I also bought Josh three new pairs of jeans. Luckily they were on sale at Penny's for $12.99 each. We at lunch at the mall and before leaving we got some ice cream. I wanted to go by Hobby Lobby but it was closed today. I went to Michaels instead. I wanted some more beads for rosaries, but I couldn't find exactly what I was looking for.. but I did get some other beads. That will give me something to do when I get my house clean. It was nice to spend the day with my son. He only complained a little when I spent too long looking at beads in Michaels.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

The weekend is half over

But at least we have thanksgiving break coming up soon. Today I went to the choir rehearsal. I'm hanging in there, but I'm pretty lost singing Handel's Hallelujah Chorus. It goes pretty high and I'm not quite able to reach some of those pitches so I just have to lay out. After rehearsal I went to my dad's shop and left the Honda there so he could tune it up for Josh and I picked up my new/used car. It feels a bit different being so low to the ground but it drives very smoothly. I went to the mall so I could spend my $50 Dillard's gift card that I got for my birthday. I attempted Christmas shopping, but it didn't go well. I really hate Christmas shopping. I don't know what to get people. I usually end up either making something or buying dinner gift cards. Although I'm doing pretty well with crocheting, that takes time and I can't get enough things finished by Christmas. I'm working on a throw for a friend of mine and it will probably take a few more weeks given the amount of free time I have. At Dillard's it took a while to find all the decent sales stuff. The women's department has been completely moved upstairs so things weren't where I was used to finding them. The sales items of course are always in the back, but I'm pretty persistent I very rarely ever buy anything at full price in Dillard's. After about an hour and a half I settled on 4 shirts and a pair of Khaki pants (to replace the pair that my dog ruined). I think I got a pretty good deal as the total was $92 and I had the $50 gift card so I only paid $42 for all of it. After the mall I headed home and then took a brief nap. Shopping is so tiresome. Then I got up and cleaned out the car of all of my dad's junk. There were still some ashes in the ash tray from when my mom briefly drove it. I then went to fill it up with gas and run it through the car wash. After that I went to the store getting groceries and other necessities. I got home a short while ago and put a frozen pizza in the oven.
Last night I gave in and ordered thai take out. I picked it up and watched t.v. I was going to go to bed early, but I discovered that a new episode of Monk was coming on. Of course I had to stay up for that. I went to bed around 10 but Josh called me at 10:45 to tell me that the football team won their playoff game. That means they have another game next weekend. I was kind of relieved to have an excuse to not go to Albuquerque. I think we'll go out to eat on Thanksgiving and keep it simple this year. Well, the pizza is almost done, so I'm going to go eat and probably watch a little t.v.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Borrowed From Patrick

Your Vocabulary Score: A+

Congratulations on your multifarious vocabulary!
You must be quite an erudite person.

I have no life

Sure, I'm busy all the time, but I really have no life. Take for example the fact that it's 5:00 p.m. and I'm already in my pajamas. I have nothing to do this Friday evening and nowhere to go. Luckily I don't have a speech tournament for another two weeks. Josh is out of town at a playoff game. I'm here at home contemplating taking a nap, cooking something to eat, or watching t.v. Sure, the down time is good, but it's not quite enough to get much accomplished. It would be a perfect evening to go on a date, but we all know how my love life is fairing at the moment. I have to say that was the biggest waste of money for me. I don't know if the guys on there are so shallow that they won't give me the time of day or if my profile offends people or I'm really not as good as I think I am. It sure is a blow to my ego. Oh well. No great loss there. It's not like I really wanted to meet someone online anyways. I still don't put much stock in it. I would just like to go out on a real date every once in a while. I don't need or necessarily want a husband at this point. Some companionship would be nice. I had a really nice dream the other night. I dreamed about someone and I was touching their hand for some reason and then there was that tingly moment when you realize that the touch is something more than platonic. I love those kinds of dreams. I miss those moments. That well of excitement when you are with someone new or you find out that your crush is interested in you. The first time they hold your hand or kiss you and a surge of energy rushes through your body. Now that is just making me depressed. I guess I'll go figure out what there is to eat. I'd order thai take-out, but that means I'd have to get dressed to go pick it up.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Is it Thanksgiving yet?

I do have lot to be thankful for, but I'll save that for another post. I'm just ready for a break. I want to sleep past 8 a.m. one of these days. Well, it won't happen until Wednesday at least. Tomorrow is Friday, thankfully. I don't have a game to go to as the playoff game is out of town. Saturday I have a choir rehearsal. Sunday is Church. Monday night is another rehearsal and Tuesday is a concert. I hope that during my five days off during Thanksgiving that I am able to first get some rest... and then accomplish something in my house.
I stayed after school today, came home with enough time to fix a quick bite before going to choir rehearsal. I just got home and am about ready to go to bed. I'm still cold. I turned up the heat in my bedroom and I'm going to get under the covers and try to warm up. At least it wasn't too bad in my room today. I wore long johns and took my shawl up there to keep warm.
Well, that's all the excitement in my world. Stay tuned for more exciting updates.

Catching Up

Yes, I am posting while at school. It's probably a no-no, but it's technically my lunch and or conference period so I think that I should be able to do what I want. It's not that I have anything to say either. I guess I'm bored and I'm avoiding work that should be done. I have, however, finished grading papers. I do need to update grades in the online grade book, but at least I'm caught up with grading in general. I've been working on updating the speech team website quite a bit and I'm getting the hang of basic web design stuff. O.k. not really design since I borrowed a template, but I am updating it pretty regularly.
I'm trying to decide what kind of iPod I should get Josh for Christmas. I think he pretty much wants it just for the music so I could get by with the Ipod Nano 4 Gig. But then I wonder if I should get him just a regular iPod that is the 30 Gig with video capabilities. I guess I'll keep doing some shopping online and see what kind of deal I can get. They also have them at Walmart priced fairly cheap.
I am getting excited about getting the new/used car. I haven't decided what Josh and I are going to do for Thanksgiving. Although I can always go to Albuquerque, I really don't want to pay for the gas to go. My aunt always fills up my tank before I leave, but it's still costs to fill it up before going. There's also a remote possibility that Josh will have to go with the band to a playoff game if the football team wins their first playoff game this Friday. I think Josh and I might just go to Golden Corral for Thanksgiving dinner. It would be pointless to make a turkey with all the trimmings for just ourselves. I'd be glad to share with someone else, but most of my family & friends either live elsewhere or will be gone.
Well, I better get ready for my next class. We're going to play a review game for their test on Friday.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Comfort Food

I didn't go to RCIA class tonight. I feel bad, but I felt like I just needed a night at home. I got home this afternoon feeling tired with my stomach a little upset. I was also quite cold. My room at school has been cold all day. The air conditioner is still running despite it being cold outside. Then I had to wait for my ride to pick me up and I was cold waiting outside for her. By the time I got home I just wanted to go to bed. Since Josh was also in bed taking a nap, I figured I could take one as well. I forgot to turn off my heater in my room this morning so it was nice and toasty. I changed into a long-sleeved t-shirt and long johns and crawled under the covers. I didn't really sleep. I still felt like I couldn't get warm. When I heard Josh stir, I got up to ask him what he wanted for supper. We decided on spaghetti so I had to go to the store to get some hamburger meat. I got home and made supper and didn't have time to go to class tonight. I got stuffed and vegged in front of the t.v. I'm slowly warming up, but I really want to get back under the covers. I hate cold weather. I guess I'll have to put up with it for several more months.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Good news all around

My dad called yesterday and said that he'd be able to loan me the money to pay off my credit card and sell me his car. I won't get the money for my card until January but that's not a big deal since I wasn't planning to start paying him until then. He just financed a truck that he bought and I guess it's good timing because he can use the money I'll be paying him to make those payments. So woooo hoooo!

I have been needing to update my anti-virus software for some time. It keeps popping up with those annoying reminders that it's out of date. Josh's computer has needed updating as well; I just didn't want to shell out the cash to pay for two copies of software. Josh and I went to Best Buy tonight so I could get an ink cartridge for my printer. Of course you can't go to Best Buy and just get one thing and leave. You have to browse a little. I was checking out the prices of anti-virus software and found that the 39.99 McAfee program was on sale for 9.99. And it wasn't even one of those sales where you only get the discount after sending in a rebate. It was truly $30 off. So I bought two copies and so we should be set. I'm going to install it shortly.

I'm trying to get plans done for the rest of the semester. It seems that time is just flying by. I am sooooo ready for Thanksgiving break. I really, really, really need to get my house clean. I am so embarrassed by it right now. It's to the point that even when I have time to clean I don't want to because I don't have enough time to get it all done.

I am happy to report that my students exceeded their fundraising goal by $705 raising a total of $3905. I am also thrilled that all my receipts matched up as well. I wanted to respond to WC_Motley's comment a while back regarding fundraising. Yes, it is indeed sad that the kids are burdened with fundraising. We do get some money budgeted for the year, but it's not nearly enough to cover the expenses of going to as many tournaments as we do. Sure, we could go to fewer tournaments, but then they wouldn't have the success that they do. Of course, if we were the football team, we wouldn't have to worry about such things. I'm not going to say that football and other sports are bad. They are very worthwhile in most respects, but honestly, I think that speech competition is something that will help students more than anything else. The skills involved in tournament competition hold no comparision to those on the field. While learning to work as a team is important, the ability to communicate ideas clearly, research, organize thoughts, manage time, and build a great deal of confidence are crucial to success in the real world. I have seen students that are barely able to speak a clear thought when they begin and they begin to come out of the shell, work hard and improve each week. And yet there's simply not enough money to fund that. Luckily, the community is very supportive and they've come through for the students. They may have raised more money through this fundraiser than that will in their speech tournament in January. By the way... any locals reading that want to judge on January 27... let me know!!!

Well, I guess that's enough for tonight. I finally decided to watch Dancing with the Stars to see what all the hoopla is about. It's actually quite entertaining and I'm sorry I missed the rest of the season.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Many jobs

I was thinking recently about my position as a teacher and I realize that I am much more than that. I actually have several jobs.

I am teacher in the sense that is my actual job. I attempt to educate students, guide them, help them prepare for their future. It's often a duanting task, but I rarely run from a challenge.

I am also an accountant. I have to keep track of fundraising money. I have to write receipts for various items. I have to keep track of the team's expenditures and budget money so that we can afford to go to more tournaments.

I am a travel planner. I have to book hotel rooms and estimate expenses for travelling to tournaments.

I am a webmaster. I designed and now upkeep our team website.

I am a librarian. I have to keep track of books of literature that students use for finding selections. I also peruse and order new materials.

I am a coach. I work with students to better their performances. I encourage them and pump them up and push them when they're not trying their hardest.

I am a babysitter. I have to monitor and watch students in the cafeteria every Friday morning and make sure they behave and clean up after themselves. Let's not forget the TAKS test as well.

I am an event coordinator. I have to plan and produce a large tournament considering every detail from room planning, judges, ballots, trophies, and snacks for the judges.

I am a designer. I have to design lessons that are interesting and intriguing. I create my own worksheets, tests, and lesson materials.

I am sure there are more jobs that I undertake not to mention the variety of jobs I hold at home. The next time someone tells me how luckily I am to have summers off, I think I'll let them know that I actually EARN those summers.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

A Proposal

No... not that kind. Geez... I haven't even been on a date in over a year. This is what I'm going to propose to my dad at dinner tonight.

A. Buy his car for $4000. (It is a 99 Nissan Maxima SE that has a power sun roof, bose stereo system, leather seats, 145,000 miles in good condition and would be worth about $5500 according to the Kelly Blue Book value - he's already offered it to me for only $4000)
B. Have him loan me $5000 in order to pay off my last two credit cards.
C. I would pay him 7% interest (which is a little more than my bank's current interest rate on used automobiles and a little less on personal loans) plus the fee that his bank would charge to withdraw the $5000 from his account. (I believe he would have to tap into his CD and would have a small percentage penalty of a few hundred dollars)
D. I would make payments to my dad (withdrawn automatically every month) for 30 months starting on Jan. 25, 2007 continuing through June. 25, 2009 in the amount of approximately $325 a month. (give or take depending on what it will cost for him to get the money out of his bank)

Here's what this would do:
1. I would avoid going to my bank for a car loan on a very basic car that I would have to make payments on for at least six years around $275-300 AND still have a visa payment of $160 on a $4500 debt that would still not be paid off in six years because of the outrageous interest rate I'm being charged.
2. Although a brand new car would be nice, I really would rather wait until I can afford something that I don't mind making payments on for a long while instead of the cheapest thing I can afford at this point.
3. I would get both a pretty decent car and get rid of the visa payment for only $325 a month instead of about $485 a month with a new car and keeping my visa bill.
4. In 2 1/2 years, I would be debt free.
5. In 2 1/2 years, Josh's SSI runs out and that is how much I will have been shelling out for my two loans paying off my credit card debt and it won't be such a shock to lose that money.

What do you think? A good deal or not? He has the money and could give me the loan. This would be good for him because he would get regular payments of money that could help him out on other things and he'd no longer have to carry insurance on an extra car. We'll see how it goes.

Slowly catching up

I finally got to sleep in past 8 and it was quite lovely. I have to get ready for church soon so this will be quick blog.

I realized that I'm writing about speech tournaments which many of you might not even be familiar with the events and such. (Except for my friend Susan who has been kind enough to judge.) I wanted to give you a link so that you could read about the organizations and events involved at tournaments.

I have another post planned for later today after I get back from church and probably after my nap. I didn't really get more sleep last night since I didn't go to bed until midnight and I was up coughing at 6 this morning. I think a nap will be in order this afternoon.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

I should be in bed

... but I figured you'd want some kind of blog. It was another very long speech tournament day. I am lucky that our bus driver (who is another teacher that volunteers without pay) was kind enough to allow me to drive my car back from Hereford this morning so I wouldn't have to ride the bus there and back today. My kids did o.k. for such a large and very competitive tournament. We didn't get any sweepstakes, but we were probably close. I had at least one student in finals of all but 6 of the 18 events. We had a situation where another coach that was in charge of the extemp draw room tried to say that my students left the room without permission (which they're not supposed to do when they've drawn their topic.) They were going to disqualify them for it. When I talked to them, they assured me that they hadn't left. We went back to the tournament director and told him that they hadn't and it came down to what my students said (which I trust them as seniors that have done this for a while... and they're trustworthy kids... if they did leave, they'd own up to it) and the other coach. The tournament director wanted some time to make a decision. He finally verified it with another student from another team that was also in the room and had seen my student in there.
We had planned to go out to eat after the tournament at a local restaurant, but it was so late that we just had to go to Wendy's.

This was Josh's first tournament as well. He did well for his first time. He broke to semi-finals in both his events which were oratory and novice extemp. I think he had a good time.

At Wendy's my students gave Josh and I a little cake for our birthdays and cookies for the rest of the team. Then everyone in the restaurant sang happy birthday to us. I think maybe Josh might have been surprised at the fact that my kids seem to really like and appreciate me. (but why not??? I'm so darn loveable aren't I???)

Overall it wasn't too bad but I'm still just tired. I wanted to go to the 8:30 Mass so I could hear the children's choir, but I may sleep in a little longer and just go to the Sunday School class and the later Mass.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Alive... barely

Well, I think I have a full blown cold. I'm pretty miserable at the moment. I didn't sleep well last night and now I'm very sneezy with watery eyes just basically miserable. I think I sucked on about two dozen lemon drops today to soothe my throat. I just got home a short while ago. I stayed after school for an Orators meeting. I also had to get ready for my sub tomorrow afternoon. I'm taking two students to a speech tournament tomorrow and then 23 students on Saturday. Tomorrow is my and Josh's birthdays. My kids (speech team), Josh and I will celebrate Saturday after the tournament by going out to dinner.

I just put some leftover pizza in the over for dinner tonight. I've also got a strawberry milkshake that is quite tasty and soothing. I'm writing a blog now while I'm awake before the drugs that I took a short while ago start to take effect and knock me out (hopefully).

I need to make some clarification. I was gone this past Sunday-Tuesday to the state marching band competition and not a speech tournament. Josh's band went to state and I went along as a parent chaperone. The trip down there wasn't bad as I got to ride in an SUV. I was a bit tired since I didn't get much sleep the night before, but managed. We stopped in Abliene on the way down for lunch and I ate at the Spaghetti Warehouse which was very, very yummy. Spaghetti is, after all, my favorite food. After lunch, the band rehearsed at a local school's field. We loaded up about an hour later than planned and got to San Antonio late because of that and the fact that the driver kept getting lost. We turned around twice on the way down.

On Monday I got to sleep in a little bit and was ready to go by 8:00. The hotel had a free breakfast. They had homemade blueberry muffins that were really yummy. I also had some potatoes and sausage. They also had a guy that made pancakes while you waited. I don't like pancakes much so I skipped those. The band stretched at 9:00, then changed into uniform and we left the hotel at 10:00 to go to the Alamodome. The band unloaded and I was given the task of shoe polishing shoes. It was knee-breaking work, but their shoes shined when they went on the field. As a chaperone, I was given pit duty and had to help carry in percussion instruments onto the field. Somehow I ended up with a heavy thing that looked like a bunch of mini-cymbals. I don't know what it was, but I did my job of carrying it in. Unfortunately being a part of the pit crew, you don't get to watch the show in the stands. But fortunately, I had a close-up view of Josh and was able to get a few pictures that I will post soon. I thought the band did pretty well but the directors said there were some things they needed to work on. We left to go to lunch around 1:30. By that time after walking to and from the Alamodome to the parking lot/warm-up area and back again, I was thoroughly hot and tired. Then we had a long walk over to the riverwalk for lunch. Some of the other adults and I went to Tony Roma's for lunch. It was really good. I couldn't make up my mind on what to eat but ended up with a sampler plate that had ribs, barbeque chicken, sausage, corn and mashed potatoes. I ate way too much. But I finally cooled off so the walk back wasn't too bad. We went into the stadium to watch the last few bands and wait for the results.

While I was sitting in the stands this guy came and sat down across the aisle from me. He looked very familiar and I kept staring at him. I finally decided I would ask him if he was the person that I thought he was and when I looked over at him again, he mouthed my name and I knew it was him. It was a guy that I went to high school with named Kyle that was a year younger than me. He lives in College Station and had come up to watch the bands. He came over and sat next to me and we had a nice visit.

When they called out the finalists, they called them out in their performance order for the evening finals. Josh's band was called LAST. I was growing quite nervous as they kept calling other bands but they finally did and they performed last. It turned out that they were in 3rd place going into finals but the placement for finals was by random draw.

We headed back to the hotel so the kids could get a little rest, but they didn't have much time. They had about an hour and were told to wait for dinner. We headed back over to the stadium at 6:30 and the band was performing at 8:45. I thought their finals show was pretty decent for what I could hear and see at ground level, but I didn't think they'd get first. I was surprised, though, that they ended up in 6th place. I think the judges just had a different preference. (But then again, I'm a very biased parent and alumnus of the school.) The kids were disappointed because they placed 3rd last time, but they dealt with it pretty well. Still... 6th place in the state isn't all that bad.

After the contest we went back to the hotel, had a late supper and I took a tylenol p.m. to ensure a good night's sleep. I didn't sleep well the night before because of very loud thunderstorm that came through.

The next morning we left shortly after nine and I had to switch places with another set of parents so I had to ride the bus all the way home. It wouldn't have been so bad except I was in the last seat on the bus which was literally the hot seat. It was right above the engines or something and the longer the trip went, the hotter it got. You also had to sit upright in the seat and didn't have much leg room. I tolerated it, but it wasn't the most fun. I did a lot of crocheting on the way back and used almost two skeins of yarn. I also read half of a cheesy romance novel after it got dark because I bought a book light at the mall.

Overall it was a good trip and I'm glad I got to experience it with Josh although I didn't really talk to him much on the trip. But more about that next time... now I'm going to finish off my pizza, relax and go to bed early.