Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 Year in Review

Even though I've been a bad blogger, I'm trying to at least keep my year in review going.

1. What did you do in 2015 that you'd never done before?
Placed 7th at a National Scrabble tournament and won $300

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I won’t kid myself.  I’ll continue to set a book reading goal on Goodreads – that’s about as much as I can do. 

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Nope – we’re all getting old.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Thankfully, no.  

5. What countries did you visit?
Once again, I’m a homebody who never gets away.  I *might* try to go on a cruise sometime so maybe I’ll get out of the country someday.

6. What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2015?
More time.  There’s never enough hours in the day it seems.  I’d also really like a maid.  I really need someone to clean up my messes because I procrastinate too much.

7. What date from 2015 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
No specific dates really – other than last week’s Snowpocalypse that happened while visiting family in Amarillo.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Receiving the Inspire Award from the SAISD foundation and placing 7th at Scrabble Nationals.

9. What was your biggest failure?
Nothing major – still haven’t cleaned out the garage. 

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Nothing major – same old colds and stuff. 

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Probably my new iPhone – not that it’s fantastic or anything, but it is faster and works better than my previous phone.  I also gave my old phone to my dad which was a major upgrade for him so it was a win all around. 

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My students did well at the state Scrabble tournament that I took them to. 

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Nobody in particular.  Matt’s mother is still being mostly silent. 

14. Where did most of your money go?
Paying bills and groceries. 

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
Making it to the top eight at Nationals.

16. What song will always remind you of 2015?

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
happier or sadder? About the same as last year – generally happy.
- richer or poorer? Slightly richer now that Josh is paying me for his car and insurance.
- thinner or fatter? Slightly fatter – really need to do something about that.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
Keeping the house clean. 

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
Worrying – about my job, the new principal, bills, etc.

20. How did you spend the holidays?
New Years (2015) – at home with Matt who grilled steaks.
Valentine’s Day – with Matt – got him tickets to a concert and we went to dinner beforehand. 
Easter – with Matt - can't even remember what church we went to this year.
4th of July – with Matt – cooked out on the grill and then just hung out at home.
Thanksgiving – With Matt and my cousins – cooked a big dinner here and then watched Harry Potter.
Christmas – went to New Mexico to visit my aunt and uncle and then headed to Amarillo to see my dad and brother.  Got snowed in while there. 

21. Did you fall in love in 2015?
Still in love with Matt.

22. How many one-night stands?
Do I have to answer this question every year?  I'm a married woman!

23. What was your favorite TV program?
Big Bang Theory is still a favorite.

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nope - still like everyone I know.

25. What was the best book you read?
I actually exceeded my Goodreads goal but I did cut it in half this year.  Some notable books were The Martian, X by Sue Grafton, Dead Wake (about the sinking of the Lusitania), and As You Wish (about the making of the movie The Princess Bride).

26. What was your favorite film of this year?
Spotlight was probably one of my favorites this year.  Surprisingly, I liked Mockingjay part 2 even though I didn’t care much for the book.   Star Wars and The Martian were also great.

27. Whom did you miss?
Friends and family back in Amarillo/New Mexico.  I haven’t seen my sister in a few years now. 

27. Who was the best new person you met?
My new principal.  I really like her. 

29. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015.
To be successful in Scrabble, you really have to learn more words.  

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

It's about damn time you posted something....

I don't know if I should give up blogging or keep at it.  I still like reading other people's blogs.  I just have a hard time keeping up with my own.  I do wish I blogged more because it helps me remember things from year to year when I forget things like what Matt got me for my birthday and such.  So since I last blogged, Josh and I had a birthday.  Mine was fairly uneventful.  Matt got me a Kohl's gift card and my aunt sent me some cash.  Josh gave me an Amazon gift card.  Matt also took me out to dinner at a really nice steakhouse the weekend after my birthday.  Food was good, but fairly expensive - even with a $40 coupon.

Work has been busy as always.  Scrabble club is still going strong.  My new principal is great.  I got to be her secret Santa the week before school was out.  When I revealed that I was her secret Santa, she got very excited and gave me a hug.  She said she enjoyed all the gifts and especially the notes I put with them.  My secret Santa gave me a 3D puzzle and Marvin the Martian cup with a lid along with other goodies during the week.

I've done all my shopping - a good portion of it online and have all the presents wrapped.  We are heading to New Mexico tomorrow evening.  We'll stop for the night along the way and then get into the mountains where my aunt lives sometime the afternoon of Christmas eve.  We'll spend Christmas day there and the day after - hopefully.  We are planning to come back through Amarillo in order to stop and see my dad and brother, but they are expecting to get 8-12 inches of snow on Sunday when were planning on heading that way.  We may have to leave early or go late... not sure which at this point. Josh is going with us as he has a week off from work.

We haven't seen the new Star Wars movie yet.  We may see it in ABQ or Amarillo if we get the chance.  We were going to go on Monday but I had shopping to do in the morning and then Matt and ran errands the rest of the day.  I headed out for final shopping this morning and got back around 1:00.  I've been working on cleaning the house some but what's a better way to procrastinate than to blog!

I'll certainly be posting my annual year in review either on the 31st or the 1st.  So now you can get TWO posts in the same month!  Well, I guess I should get busy on the kitchen again.  There's so much STUFF.  I also need to start packing soon.  I've got a load in the washer and when that's done, I'll get the suitcase out and get started.  Hope you're all having a nice holiday.  If I don't blog again by Friday, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Monday, October 26, 2015

I know, I know

Yes, I've been a very bad blogger lately.  Things have been crazy busy for a while.  Let's see - I got the Inspire award and it was a very nice evening.  I shook hands with John Quinones and Matt took a blurry picture of he and I together.  (Note to self: Do not let Matt take pictures with my phone any more.)  School has been busy with just about everything.  My Scrabble club is now HUGE.  I have over 50 students that I'm recording scores on.  One lunch alone has 28 students in it.  Another lunch has about 18 and the last lunch has only 4.  Still - it stays active and the kids are having fun I think.  My Scrabble class is also keeping me busy as I'm constantly working on the curriculum that I'm creating as I go.

I played in a Scrabble tournament this weekend and did fairly well placing 4th overall.  I won my entry fee of $50 back.  It was up and down for a while, but I had some good wins and some lousy losses.  We always host people from out of town for tournaments so I had to work on cleaning the house a few days before.

Josh is coming home this weekend.  He's going to speak at our career day at school on Friday.  On Saturday, he and I are going to go see the Rocky Horror Picture show.  Matt is going to the Stevie Wonder concert by himself.  I feel kind of bad that I'm not going with Matt, but he says that he is ok with going by himself.  I've been in the stage version of Rocky Horror and watched the movie on tv with a group of friends, but haven't had the full theater experience.  I think it will be fun.

On Friday night, Matt and I are going to the Spurs opening home game.  It's going to the a busy weekend.

Matt is planning on hosting a Scrabble tournament in San Antonio in December.  I'm going to try to bring my students to it.  I don't know if I'll be able to play in it though.  I will need another sponsor to help watch the students while I play.  I should start playing in more Scrabble tournaments.  I don't know if I'll steadily move up the ladder, but I need to force myself to study more in order to do so.  I really need to learn my four letter words.

Well, I'm going to go have some leftover pizza for dinner and probably call it an early night.  I'm still tired from all the thinking I did this weekend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Being Recognized

So last week I received a surprise visit during school.  The assistant principal came into the library and told me that something was going on and that I needed to stand up.  In walked the director of the SAISD foundation that has funded my Scrabble club and other projects the past few years.  She told me that I was going to be recognized as an honoree at their annual Inspire Awards banquet as an Innovative educator.  Only two teachers in the district were being recognized - myself and an elementary teacher.  It's kind of a big deal.  The dinner is a major fundraising event for the foundation and there will be some celebrities like John Quinones there.  Matt will be going with me.  I went shopping this weekend for a dress to wear.  The ceremony is next week on Wednesday.  I was told that I'll be able to say a few words so now I have to figure out what I want to say.

School has been busy as always.  Last week I had a nasty cold that made work more difficult.  I'm finally getting better but not at 100% yet.  Hope to be there by Friday.  I'm presenting at a workshop on Friday.  I haven't even gotten a real start on the presentation.  I have a general idea of what I'm doing, but need to start actively working on it.  I've spent the last few weeks working on my book order.  The district facilitator is coming tomorrow and she is going to approve my final list.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Starting another year

So school has been in session (with students) a little over a week.  I spent most of last week getting textbooks out to teachers.  I'm hoping to open the library for book checkouts later this week.  I'm (im)patiently waiting for a bunch of equipment to be picked up before students can freely roam.  So last year I was a bit worried about getting a new principal.  So far I really like her.  I was worried about her need for tidiness, but so far it hasn't been an issue since she knows I'm trying to get the library opened and have had to deal with a bunch of stuff.  I like the fact that she gets stuff done, she is visible, and is tough but fair.  I think I've impressed her with my technological skills so far.

Tomorrow I should be finished with all the textbook deliveries.  Next I have to pack up a bunch of books to get rid of.  Then I have to update out fixed assets.  I'm also in the middle of working on my book order which has to be turned in two weeks from now.  I'm pretty close to spending all the money I have - it's harder than it seems - especially when you have to be careful about the titles you choose.  We can't purchase anything that has to do with drugs, sex, gangs, bullying, or violence.

So there's big news in Josh's world.  He is finally a fully employed adult.  He graduated in May with his Master's in music composition.  He has been working as an intern at the local classical music station in Houston.  An opening came up at the station and he was offered the job after interviewing for it.  He will have health insurance and an pretty good salary.  I'll be able to take him off my insurance and he will start paying me back for his car payment and car insurance.  He is airing his first two hour show on Friday. You can listen to it online if you're interested.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Back to Work

I reported back for my first day yesterday.  The past two days have been productive but exhausting.  I couldn't keep my eyes open after getting home from dinner tonight.  Our new principal is a bit of a clean freak so it's going to be an interesting year.  I wish I could say that my library is always neat and organized, but I tend to operate in what I call organized chaos most of the time.  My desk is rarely tidy, but I can tell you where that paper is that I'm looking for - it's in that pile over there.  The verdict is out on the principal so far.  I'm just hoping she doesn't micro-manage.  If she lets me do my job, I'll be ok.

Tomorrow starts three days of meetings with other librarians which will hopefully be refreshing.  It's nice to be able to work with colleagues that are also friends.  We tend to commiserate with each other.  The only thing is that I won't be able to go to lunch with my "group" tomorrow as I'll have a working lunch with our library organization officers.

Matt works late on Tuesdays and doesn't get home until about 10.  I might be asleep by the time he gets home.  It's going to take a few days for me to get used to working and not being totally exhausted at the end of the day.

Saturday, August 08, 2015

Back to School

To answer DKZody's question, school starts for students on August 24.  I report back for work on Monday.  I get two days on my own in the library before all the teachers return.  On those days I'll have to get equipment set up in about a dozen rooms in preparation for district inservice that is happening on our campus starting Wednesday.  I also have to get the library clean, pull textbooks out of a million boxes, and update the fixed assets information since the new principal wants every room in the school to be known as a number (instead of "office") or ("band hall").  

Yesterday Matt and I braved crowds to go clothes shopping.  Matt really needed new pants and it is the tax free weekend.  Kohl's wasn't too crowded and Matt found 4 pairs of pants.  I found a pair of pants and a blouse.  After that we headed to the outlet stores in San Marcos.  That's where it was rather crazy.  It took us 15 minutes to find parking.  Matt was finally able to find new shoes at the Nike Store.  I found two pairs at the Sketcher's outlet.  After that we headed home.  It was really hot - over 100 degrees.  This is the hottest part of the year for us.  This is when I moved down here 4 years ago and it was about 106 degrees then.  Our summer has been relatively mild until now.  Hopefully it will start cooling off in another few weeks.  

Today I slept in since I was up fairly late last night.  I'm going to have to start training myself to get to bed earlier.  Being in Reno last week and on Pacific time has thrown my clock off a bit.  I went to get my hair cut at 12:30.  She cut it quite a bit shorter than last time, but I'm ok with it since my hair grows really fast.  I went to lunch at a place called Fire Bowl Cafe and then went to Michael's.  They had all their Scrabble paraphernalia on sale for half price so I picked up lots of pencils, pens, notebooks, and such to use as incentives for my students in my Scrabble class.  

Now Matt and I are trying to decide what to do for supper.  We seem to be very indecisive tonight.  I haven't gone to the store to get groceries yet so there's not much to cook.  

Friday, August 07, 2015

I guess I'm a Scrabble player

So Matt and I left for Nationals a week ago.  Somehow I got on a roll and played very well in my division - at least up to the new format of an elimination round.  Day 1 I went 6-1.  Day two I think I only lost two games.  By the end of day 3, I had a record of 15-5, I think, and I was in second place going into the elimination bracket of the top 8 competitors.  Unfortunately, I lost the first bracket to the young man who ultimately won in my division.  (I did beat him twice, however.  Once in the preliminary rounds and once in the elimination round when we played best out of 4 games.)  After that I was vying for 5th-8th place.  I had a record of 3 wins and 3 losses and ended up in 7th place because of the spread.  (Number of cumulative points after 6 games.)  I won $300 and hope to get the check in another week or so.

Matt didn't do very well.  He had a lot of bad luck in drawing tiles.  He was happy for me though.  We did have a nice time visiting with fellow Scrabble friends and going out to dinner.  The best dinner was at a nice Italian restaurant.  It was so much food and I was frustrated I couldn't box it up to take back to the hotel.  Our room didn't come with a refrigerator.  I found that during the week, I couldn't eat a whole lot.  We did try the Mexican restaurant at the hotel but it was fairly bland.  It seems that places outside of Texas really don't know how to do Mexican food very well.

We went to the movies while there and saw Mr. Holmes.  Matt needed a night to decompress and not think about Scrabble.

Our last day was very long.  I had to play 3 rounds in the morning and then I had about 3 hour break.  I went to the awards room where they were live streaming the final rounds in the first division.  It was interesting to watch two master players at work.  I discovered that they each took quite a bit of time before making their plays.  I'm always worried about my time so I often try to play fast when I can.  I had to wait for awards of course so once I received my recognition and they finished announcing for my division, Matt and I rushed out to catch the shuttle to the airport.  It was just before 3:30 and the shuttle was supposed to leave at that time.  Luckily the shuttle was delayed so we did make it.  Our flight was at 5:30.  We had a layover in Las Vegas that was supposed to only be about 2 hours but turned into about 3 1/2.  We were supposed to get in at 1:15 a.m. but didn't make it until a little after 3:00.  Once we got luggage, took a shuttle to the car, and got home, it was almost 4 a.m.  We slept in until almost noon the next day.

Today we went clothes shopping since it is the start of the tax-free weekend.  Matt really needed new pants and shoes.  He found four pairs at Kohl's while I got one pair and a blouse.  Next we headed to the outlet stores in San Marcos.  There it was really crazy - took us 15 minutes to get a parking spot.  Matt was able to find some shoes at the Nike store.  I found two pairs of shoes for myself at the Sketcher's store.  We headed home around 3:00 and then went to an early dinner around 5:30.  Tomorrow I've got to see if I can get my hair cut again and then head to Michael's for more Scrabble stuff.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Paying the Price

I paid the price for the fun I had yesterday.  You'd think that sitting in a tube riding down a river for five hours wouldn't be that exhausting or physically demanding.  Well, you don't just ride, you have to paddle with your arms from time to time to steer around rocks and to catch up to others.  I'm a magnet for big rocks in the river.  I hit one pretty hard with my butt while going over some small rapids.  On the plus side, I didn't get sun burned.  I put on plenty of sunscreen before we started and had a small tube that I took with me in a waterproof case and I reapplied it throughout the trip.  We went to dinner when we finished and I was so hungry I ate every single bit on my plate and it was a rather large piece of chicken fried chicken with fries and corn.  Matt and I stopped at a store on the way home to pick up some tylenol since we were so sore.  This morning I was feeling stiff and puffy.  My eyes did not appreciate wearing contacts yesterday.  I laid around until I was hungry around noon.  I ran to Sonic for a burger.  I felt a little more alive after eating so I've been working on word lists this afternoon.  I need to go to the store but I may wait until tomorrow.  I think today is just going to be a lazy day with some naps involved.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Going tubing tomorrow

A Scrabble friend of ours invited us to go tubing with her tomorrow at the Frio river.  Matt has a doctor's appointment in the morning, but we will head over there in the afternoon.  I have to see if I can still fit into my swimsuit and find my water shoes.  I went tubing for the first time two summers ago in the Comal river in New Braunfels.  It was fun, but I got sunburned pretty bad.  I put sunscreen on, but I should have taken some with me so I could keep applying it.

My cousin Rob took Matt out for a boy's movie this afternoon with Rob's son.  His wife and two daughters stayed here and we watched the second Harry Potter movie.  I'm glad I have family in town, but sometimes doing things with company can be exhausting.  I guess it's because I'm so much of an introvert.  I need my alone/down time.

I've been actively working on my online Scrabble study cards.  I've found several that have already been created by others, but need some editing because the list is slightly different (probably a Collins or British) word list than the NASPA (North American Scrabble Players Assoc.) word list.  I'm hoping that by going through all the words that some of them will sink in.  I worked on my three to four hooks (letters you add to a three letter word to make a four letter word such as ban + d = band) the other night and I was surprised at how many I knew.  There are some unusual words I've learned from that list like "waah", "kbar", and "udon".

I'm going to head back up to the Panhandle on Saturday.  It will be a quick trip to take care of some bank stuff in person and to see a few friends.  Of course I'll have to have my beloved Taco Villa and a donut stop donut.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Just three more weeks

I only have three more weeks of summer vacation.  Boy time goes by fast.  I've read a few books, studied some Scrabble words, watched some t.v. and rested a lot.  I haven't done a lick of cleaning.  I'll probably do that next week so I can start school with a clean house.  I especially need to clean out my closet.

I slept in this morning and then headed out a little after noon to take care of my craving for Tacos.  I went to Taco Cabana and got the Mexican Plate (enchilada, taco, double rice since I don't like beans) with a drink and an extra taco.  It was filling and hit the spot.  After that, I went to Home Depot to get some spray paint for my Scrabble racks.  I then went to Best Buy to pick up some ink for my printer.  I have more word lists I want to print and start working on.  Finally I went to Walmart and got some glitter spray for the racks.  I put the first coat on the racks and am waiting for them to dry outside.  It's pretty hot today so it shouldn't take long.  I've been goofing off online for a bit, but I think I'll start working on some Scrabble stuff shortly.

Matt was on the news this morning.  Here's the link if you want to watch the story:

I think we are going out to a district library social this evening.  The problem is that it's kind of far away across town.  I hate trying to go across town in rush hour traffic.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Celebrating One Year Together

Matt and I just celebrated our first wedding anniversary.  Time seems to fly when you marry the right person.  I didn't know that the traditional first anniversary gift was paper, but I guess I did well by buying him the new Stephen King book that he's been wanting to read.  He is going to get me the new Harper Lee book when it comes out tomorrow.  He also got me a $20 lottery ticket and I won $100 on it.  I spent a good portion of it today by going to Hobby Lobby and getting stuff to decorate my new Scrabble board and then going to Ross for Less for some new clothes.

Last night we went to a nice restaurant for dinner.  It was expensive, but not as bad as some of the places we've been to.  The service was great and it was a nice atmosphere.  The food was excellent as well.  I had a rib-eye steak with garlic mashed potatoes.  Matt had venison and quail.

So I played in a Scrabble tournament in Austin on Saturday.  I have yet to do well in an Austin tournament.  I was seeded 4th and came in 6th winning 3 games and losing 4.  I did bingo out in 3 games but one of them wasn't enough points to surpass my opponent.  I would have won that game if I had challenged a word that I let go.  After the tournament, I met my friend Brent for dinner.  It was great to be able to see him.

I need to start studying again this week.  I really need to nail down all the three letter words and work on some of the important fours.  My summer is quickly coming to a close.  I'll be heading back to Canyon in about two weeks for a couple of days and then shortly after that will be our trip to Reno for Scrabble nationals.  We'll get back late Wednesday on August 5 and then I report back to work on Monday, August 10.  Where has the time gone?

Friday, July 10, 2015

Scrabble Studying

I've been trying to focus on studying Scrabble stuff but it's not easy.  I did go to the library earlier this week which helped.  I've been making old fashioned study cards with index cards, but I'm also creating online study cards using a program called Quizlet.  I'm hoping the dual card making will lead to more retention.  There's just a whole lot of words I have never used before and have no idea what they mean like "fyke", "kapu", "hwyl", "ekka", or "eruv".  I'm probably not nearly ready enough for nationals, but I'm more prepared than I was two years ago.  This year's section is much smaller though - half the size, in fact.  When I went in 2013 I was ranked 81st out of 95.  I ended up being 61st out of 95 at the end of the tournament.  This year there are only 46 entered in my division and I'm currently ranked 30th.  I don't know if that is good or bad.  I'm expected to win at least 15 out of 31 games.  That's what I won last time.  I hope I do slightly better, but a good portion of it is the luck of the draw.  I may study my bingo stems, but if I draw all vowels, it isn't going to help.

I think I'm going to go play in a tournament in Austin this weekend.  Hopefully it will help me prepare for nationals.  I'll try to take stock of what I need to focus on and then get back to studying.  Of course I should also be focusing on cleaning out the garage and doing the other things I had planned.  I'm still waiting on my cousin to come get a bunch of stuff he left here.  His family just moved into a house down here and has been leaving stuff here each trip they've made before they finally got the keys to their house.  His van then had to go in the shop because the radiator broke after being towed.  Oh well, it has given me an excuse not to clean.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Ready to catch up on my sleep...

So we headed to Houston on Saturday evening as soon as Matt got home from work.  We actually made good time and got to the hotel by 8:30.  I'd been getting emails from the concert officials telling us that we really needed to get there a couple of hours early.  We checked into the hotel and then drove over to a park and ride area and took the train into downtown.  We got to the Toyota Center about 30 minutes before the doors were supposed to open at 10:00.  When we got there, they had a guy announcing that they weren't going to open the doors until 10:30.  I stood in line to get a t-shirt outside and then we left to go get something to drink since we still had an hour to kill.  We got back around 10:15 and joined the crowd waiting to get inside.  They finally opened the doors but it still took about 15 minutes to get inside.  We then got drinks and found our seats on the floor.  These were the best seats I've had I think - center on the end about 25 rows back from the stage.  The show didn't start until 11:30 but it was worth the wait.  Garth Brooks puts on a great show.  The show didn't end until just before 2:00 a.m.  We headed out and took the train back to the park and ride and got back to the hotel a little after 3:00.  I had to get up by 8:15 the next morning so we could go meet Josh for breakfast.  We did that and then went to church before heading back to San Antonio.  Matt took a shot of 5 hour energy so he was able to do the drive.  We arrived home around 3:45 p.m.

I wanted to take a nap, but I knew if I did, I wouldn't be able to get up to go to my band concert in Seguin.  We left around 5:00 but stopped at the pet store to get a new harness for Angie.  We took the dogs with us to the concert since it was outdoors on the town square.  We were very lucky that we didn't get rained out since we had a 60% chance of rain.  The concert went fine though the clarinet player that sits next to me was late.  She missed the first song, but that's because we started early.  The dogs seemed to enjoy the excursion.  They were oohed and ahhed by the people that walked by.  They got a lot of attention and Mollie had explain who was boss to a few dogs that were nearby.  I was so exhausted when we got home that I couldn't even finish watching The Big Bang Theory at 9:30.

My cousin and family was supposed to get in that night, but since they had a key, I figured they could fend for themselves.  I got up at 2:30 for water but they hadn't made it by then.  I made sure the porch light was on and then went back to bed.  I heard them come in around 4:30 in the morning.  I would normally have slept in, but I got up at 8:00 and saw that my uncle (my cousin's dad) had come with them.  I made him some coffee and visited with him until the rest of the crew woke up.  I hadn't expected them to bring their kids back, but they brought the two girls.  So now I've been babysitting the last two days.  At least they're old enough to fend for themselves and since we have The Disney Channel, they are staying entertained.  I did let them make bracelets with some of my beads today.  Matt is good about entertaining them, but he's gone to work now.

I'm still tired.  I spent most of yesterday cleaning the kitchen, then went to the grocery store so I could get stuff to make chicken tortilla soup for supper.  I got up by 8:00 this morning and went to Krispy Kreme to get donuts.  Once Matt was up I let him watch the girls while I went back to bed to nap for a bit.  I got up in time to take a shower before he had to leave for work.  I should be studying Scrabble stuff, but I don't think I can concentrate here.  I know I originally said I wanted a big house so company can come visit, but I'm ready to have it back to just the two of us and the animals for a while.  Entertaining is simply exhausting.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Summer so far...

I haven't been completely lazy so I guess that's a good thing.  My cousin's wife is here staying with us because she started her new job this week, but they haven't closed on the house they bought yet.  I had to get ready for her visit so I did laundry this weekend and continued most of it on Monday.  I also designed a thank you card for the band in the afternoon.  I planned to get out and get my car inspected and get my new registration tags yesterday but I didn't make it.  I stayed home and watched tv most of the day, but I did do some school stuff in the afternoon.  I also had band practice last night.  Today I finally got my car inspected and got the registration tag.  I then came home and took a nap.  Life is rough in the summer, huh?  Tomorrow I plan to work at the school for a few hours and then go work on some Scrabble study materials again.  We have Scrabble practice tomorrow night.  On Saturday we are driving to Houston to go to the Garth Brooks concert.  I booked a hotel through hotwire and we've decided to park and ride taking the train into downtown.  Turns out there is going to be a LGBT pride parade downtown that evening so it's going to be very crowded.  We will head back Sunday mid-morning and then I have a band concert in Seguin that evening.  It's going to be a busy weekend.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer vacation is finally here

So I've already gotten into a routine of being mostly lazy.  It doesn't take long for that to happen in the summer.  I'm going to try to talk myself into doing small projects over the course of the break.

On Wednesday Matt and I went to the Juneteenth dinner where he was getting an award.  We were foolish in that we left the house without an umbrella.  Sure enough, it was pouring by the time we got to the location.  Matt dropped me off in front and I was able to take cover quickly.  Matt, however, got drenched in his suit after walking from where he parked the car.  He was a mess.  Turns out that we weren't the only ones who didn't bring umbrellas though.  The dinner was nice though they served collard greens and sweet mashed potatoes which I don't care for.  The brisket and mac and cheese was good though.  I didn't get a picture of me in the dress, but I did get a picture of Matt getting his award.  It was the Sojourner Truth award and it was for his work on putting together a large collection of African American funeral programs.

I didn't do much on Thursday other than goofing off in front of the computer, reading, and watching tv.  I did go to Scrabble club though.  I lost one game by just 3 points and won the other two games handily scoring over 400 points in each game.  I decided that on Friday I would get out to the local library and spend time studying Scrabble stuff in preparation for Nationals.  I stopped at Subway for a sandwich and then spent a couple of hours at the library working on new study cards.  Matt and I went out to dinner that evening.  We went to Zio's which is one of our favorite local Italian chain restaurant but I wasn't too thrilled with my dinner.

Saturday was pretty much completely lazy.  I don't think I ever got dressed all day.  I did make a pot roast for dinner though.  Today we are headed to church shortly.  We usually go to the 1:00 service since we like to sleep in.  I also have to do some laundry.  My cousin's wife is coming to stay with us for a few days as she starts her job tomorrow but won't be closing on the house until later in the week.  Since we've had guests every weekend for a month now, I'm ready to have some down time.

Well, I better get Matt roused so he can get his shoes on and ready to go.  He is terrible about being on time to things.  If it weren't for me he would still be perpetually late to things.  A friend of ours commented on how nice it has been since I came into his life and now he isn't as late as he usually is.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Back to Short Hair

I'd been thinking about getting my hair cut again for a while now.  I went fairly short not long after the wedding, but I never got to a point where I liked it much.  If I straightened my hair it was ok, but lately it's been more of a pain than something I like.  All I do is throw some mousse in it and go most of the time.  I figured with summer being here and temperatures already up in the 90's, I would go short again.  So while I was out shoe shopping today I decided to stop by a salon in the mall and get it cut.  I took a couple of pictures with me to show what I wanted and I think I got it.  Of course the natural bit of wave sometimes makes it not fall exactly the way I want, but I can use the curling iron to tame most of it.  So I'm happy with my decision even if there are those few naysayers that just love long hair.  For me long hair is a pain.  Sure, you can be creative and style it and make it pretty, but I'm rather lazy when it comes to hair so I need something that is easy to manage.  So there's that.

Of course I didn't find shoes.  I don't know why almost all dress shoes seem to mandate a heel that is 2-4 inches.  I was looking for something in a low heel in white or hot pink.  Everything was the wrong color, the wrong heel, or more of a sandal.  I already have white sandals but was hoping to wear control top pantyhose to help a bit.  I guess I'll go for some control top underwear and forgo the hose.  I did pick out some nice bright nail polish for my toes.  I think it will match both my dress and Matt's shirt.  Of course we will probably get soaked when we head out to the dinner tomorrow night.  We are starting to get bits and pieces of tropical storm Bill.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Finally Got an Answer

Got the long awaited email at 6:17 tonight.  It said that I would be assigned to my same school "in a position for which I am certified" next school year.  I hope that means that I'm returning as the librarian and not in a teaching position.  I would have to just quit at that point.  I have to sign a memo and return it by Friday.

I went into the school today to finish up what I didn't get to do on Friday.  I had to finish setting up the summer school principal's computer and printer, finalize my discarded book list, and store my library computers.  Matt came up and helped me by covering some of the equipment with sheets and then shredded papers for me until he broke my shredder.  I kept telling him that he was putting too much in it but he didn't listen to me.

After I finished at the school, I headed over to another school to help another librarian with her inventory paperwork.  The other librarians in the district tend to call on me for help rather than the library facilitator as she is almost always too busy to help.

Matt and I then headed to Schlotzkey's for lunch and then had to go shopping to get him a dress shirt, tie, and shoes for an upcoming awards banquet that he is being honored at.  It is a Juneteenth celebration and he is being recognized with a Sojourner Truth award for his work on the library's African American funeral program collection.  We found his shirt and tie, but then I had to find a dress.  We headed to Dillards and I found one that I liked though it was a bit tight.  I went ahead and got it and plan to wear control top pantyhose.  I really need to work on losing some weight.  I'm sure that is one of the main causes for my acid reflux issues I'm having.  I'm investigating the possibility of swimming at a local community college pool.  Although we have a community pool, it hasn't been open yet this summer and it's not been taken care of by our HOA group.

I am seriously thinking about getting my hair cut yet again.  I think I want to go back to short hair.  It's still pretty short in a bob, but I want something different.  I've always liked having short hair so I think it's time again.  It will make the hot summer more bearable.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Stomach Flu Sucks

I spent Thursday evening doing laundry and making beds in preparation for my brother's visit.  I intended to finish cleaning like vacuuming and sweeping and stuff on Friday evening after work since he wouldn't be getting in until after 9.  My stomach had other plans, however.  Around 3 in the morning I had acid reflux so I got up and took an acid reducer tablet and waited for it to start working.  I tried going back to bed, but lying down didn't help.  I got up and got online hoping to wait it out.  Around 3:30 a.m. I realized it wasn't going to work when I threw up my dinner from the night before.  I threw up again at 6 a.m.  Around 7 a.m. I texted the school secretary telling her I'd come in later that morning since I hadn't gotten much sleep.  After throwing up again at 7:30, I threw in the towel and called to tell her I wouldn't be coming in at all.  I threw up twice more on Friday before I was done.  My brother got in around 9:30 and I managed to get out of bed and welcome them.  I told them I was sick, but to make themselves at home, and that hopefully I would feel better in the morning.  I finally started feeling somewhat human on Saturday, but not 100%.  I was able to keep breakfast down.  I went with my brother and his kids to the new children's museum that just opened.  It was cool, but too crowded for me.  Kids are better in moderation.  We went out for lunch and I was able to eat normal food, but could only eat about half of it.  Matt had signed us up to work the Folklife Festival so after lunch, my brother brought me home so I could rest until I had to go out again in the evening.  Usually I really enjoy the festival because it's a bunch of different kinds of ethnic foods, but I could only eat half a beef kabob and drink a sprite.  Today has been better, but still not quite 100% yet.  We went to church and came back in the pouring rain.  Thankfully our roof was fixed on Friday, so hopefully no leaks!  Now I'm home in my Marvin the Martian pajamas and I'm staying put until about 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.  Matt has to go back to the festival this afternoon.  I hope the rain lets up.  It has poured for about 2 hours now.

And to answer the burning question about my job status... nope, still haven't heard.  The email earlier this week said that I'd hear by Friday but I never got an email about it.  I'm going to email a final time  on Monday and if I don't get an answer one way or the other, I'm sending in the other application.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

The end is in sight!

Tomorrow is my last day of work for the school year.  I saved just enough stuff to finish tomorrow, I think.  I will probably be done early.  Today I scanned about 500 books to be discarded.  Tomorrow I have to save some lists so I can include the information on next year's inventory reports... assuming I'm even there next year.  I still haven't heard anything yet.  I can't believe they are going to wait until Friday - if they even tell me then.

It has been grand central station around here for about a month.  Two weeks ago, we hosted my cousin Rob and his family while they were down here house hunting.  Josh was also here that weekend when we went to Fiesta Fest and it stormed really, really bad.  The park closed early and we had to wait most of the storm out at Matt's coworker's house.

The following weekend, we had our small district school Scrabble tournament.  My students did very well, though they were only competing against one other school.  There were 13 teams and we took 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 7th places.

Last weekend one of Matt's college friends came to stay with us.  He is a very low key, quiet guy.  Having conversations with him was difficult, but he was very nice.  We took him to Fiesta Texas but I think the coasters were a bit much for him.  Matt still hasn't had a chance to ride Batman yet - the line was too long by the time we decided to ride it.

So just when we think we are getting a break, my brother calls me and says he and the family are coming to town this weekend.  Of course being the good sister that I am, I told him they could stay here.  So tonight instead of playing at Scrabble club, I'm home washing sheets and stuff.  Actually, I've been napping and goofing off on the computer while the sheets are washing and drying.  I do have some dry sheets up here to put on the beds, but haven't gotten to it yet.  I'll get it done by the time Matt gets home though.

Tonight I've got to figure out when we are going to fly to Reno for nationals and make a decision on going to San Francisco or not.  I'm discovering that San Francisco is a very expensive city.  I'm looking into doing airbnb instead of a hotel so that we can stay somewhere within the city and not pay $300 a night.  But I've never been there and I think it would be a fun trip.  It looks like we might not get to ride roller coasters while there.  The best flight times cuts a potential day that we would be staying there which also saves money as well.

Well, I'm off to figure out why iTunes is not able to copy my music to my phone after updating.  I am really regretting doing the latest update.  Now my Scrabble anagram program doesn't work and I've lost all the music that I had recorded from CDs.  I've had an iPhone since 2009 but I'm seriously considering going to another phone when my contract is up in November.  When I'm in a crowded place like a concert or theme park, I can never get connected to facebook or the internet.  I thought it might be the service provider, but Josh never had a problem with his phone and he uses the same company.  He has a Galaxy I think.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Blog Comments

Blogger Billy said...
I should hope they would talk to you in person regardless. I hate how impersonal places have become. Keeping my fingers crossed that you get what you want!
11:15 PM
Billy - When I "re-interviewed" to keep my job I was told that I would find out in person either the day before everyone else or at the end of the day since they knew I'd be busy with all the end of year procedures.  That day came and went and it's irritating that I had to email someone to find out what was going on.  Even then, the answer was fairly vague though they said I'd know by the end of the week.  
At this point I'm not sure what I want.  If I was offered the job with the other district that I interviewed with, I'd take it.  Since our campus is getting a new principal it could be good or bad.  I don't know what kind of leader she'll be and if she will give me the freedom to do my job like the previous principal did.  There is another opening in a different district which is on a military base.  If my current district decides I'm not staying at my current school, I'm definitely applying, but I'm not certain about it before I know whether my current job is secure. The other district doesn't pay into the Teacher Retirement System but only Social Security.  My current district is unique in that it pays into both.  I'd also hate to leave my Scrabble students that I've been working with.  Ultimately I guess things will work out.  I've decided that if they haven't told me by Friday, I'll put in my application and see what happens. 

Blogger Andrew Q. said... I don't know if you are interested after that shenanigan I pulled, but I at least wanted to invite you to read my new blog. I hope you are well and I miss you.
Andrew - I'll still read but with a sense of wariness.  I haven't decided how I feel about the whole made up girlfriend thing.  My advice to you is to just keep it real.  You've always told me that you like my blog because I talk about the mundane stuff - that's why I've read yours all these years.  You didn't need to spice things up.  Don't worry about your readership - people will read or they won't.  They'll come and go.  You just have to write for the sake of writing.  
I know I haven't been a very good blogger lately.  I do miss it.  I frustrate myself because I used to use my blog to go back and remember things that happened in previous years and when it's been as scarce as it has been, it's hard to do.  
7:02 AM
OpenID dkzody said...
Thanks for filling in the blanks. I am not too surprised, having seen what education is like, at how they are dragging out the decision-making. They don't seem to realize that teachers have a life.

I am surprised at the lack of training, though. Fresno Unified has had many problems and there is always hours and hours of training. Especially during the summer. Keeping half the staff does not sound like a good idea if they are not going to do some major changes in the way things are done. That will take lots of training.
9:29 AM
The district does offer other training over the summer, but it isn't required.  They create a catch-22 situation when it comes to training.  They've mandated that teachers (and librarians) cannot go to any district training during the school day in order to keep everyone in the classroom.  The problem is that they cannot mandate that we go to training in the evenings beyond our scheduled work day either.  So teachers must voluntarily go on their own time or it doesn't happen - unless it's on campus during a monthly faculty meeting.  

Tuesday, June 09, 2015


To answer dkzody's questions:

How did the reconstitution go at your school? 

I thought my portfolio was excellent and that my interview went well.  This was back in May that we had interviews.  I even got a high five from the assistant superintendent and the other lady that interviewed my has seen me in action this year and knows of the work I've done.  It has been a tedious process, however.  I was disappointed that I didn't find out my fate when all the other teachers found out on the last day of school.
Did any of the staff get to stay?
Yes, about half the staff is staying.  I was surprised by some of the people they "let go" though that just means they will get a job elsewhere in the district.  I was more surprised by some of the people that they chose to stay, however.  I guess some of them is because they are fairly new and therefore they think they may be trainable, but I would not have chosen some that they did decide to keep on campus.  We lost our band director, choir director, art teacher, two ELA teachers, two science teachers, two math teachers, and maybe a social studies teacher.  One of the SS teachers retired which is probably good because although he is a nice guy, they would most definitely have let him go.  
They announced the replacement of our principal several weeks ago and she has no idea if she will get another principal job or be demoted to a VP position.  
One of the counselors is choosing to go back to elementary.  The other counselor, the assistant principal, the campus instructional specialist and myself still haven't heard whether we are staying or not.  I did get a response from my email which stated that I would find out via email by Friday.  If they decide to let me go, they better do it in person as I will want to know why.  I got a perfect score on my evaluation. My overall "score" was to be tied with the reading scores for the school and since they kept all the reading teachers, I assume that they are happy with those scores.  I thought the interview went well.  My concern is that perhaps the new principal coming in might want to bring her own staff in - if so, I don't think it would be fair to let me go when I've done a pretty good job.  
 Where will the new staff be coming from for the fall?
It will be a mix of people newly applying to the district (which sad to say is mostly new teachers and Teach for America candidates).  There may be some people within the district looking to transfer, but I would think that many might not want to work in a school that has so many problems.  
 Will there be summer training to bring the school up to speed to be ready when the students return?
We have a professional learning conference that starts the week before school starts for about three days.  Sometimes its beneficial - sometimes it's not.  Most teachers would prefer more time in their rooms to get ready for the year.  My job starts two days before all the teachers, but I'll be spending it getting ready for hosting part of the conference at our campus.  That will mean multiple projectors and equipment set up in all the rooms being used.  

Monday, June 08, 2015

School is Almost Out

The last day for students was last week on Thursday.  The last day for teachers and most of the staff was Friday.  That was the day everyone (except me) found out whether they were going to stay at Rogers or be "reconstituted".  I was told by my principal that I would find out my status at a "later date."  Since I hadn't heard by today, I emailed the assistant superintendent to find out when I might be told.  I only work through Friday this week.  If I don't get an answer by the end of the week, I'll start applying to other districts.  I haven't heard from the one district I interviewed with, but the principal said that he would be making his decision this week so I should find out one way or the other.

I worked all day and I don't feel as though I accomplished much.  I found out this weekend that I had to clear the lab where I had stored a bunch of equipment.  I had to pull it all out and put it in the stacks of the library.  Luckily most of it was already on rolling carts.  Tomorrow my goal is to finish with the general sorting, cleaning, and such.  I still have to fill out forms to have 77 boxes of textbooks to be picked up.  I also have to complete forms to have a whole bunch of broken and outdated equipment to be picked up as well.

Matt has a friend from St. Louis visiting.  He got in on Friday and will be heading back tomorrow morning.  We went to Six Flags on Saturday and then did an San Antonio bus tour on Sunday.  It was really hot both days.  I was exhausted at the end of each day and just fell asleep quickly.  This morning came too early though.  I'll be glad when I'm not working next week and can sleep in.  I need to try to focus this summer and get several things done.  I really need to study for the National Scrabble tournament.  I want to do a better job that I've been doing.  I need to start adding a lot of 4 letter words to my vocabulary.  I think I'll try to work out a schedule and study for a certain amount of time each day.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


I had my interview on Monday and it was just ok.  I was disappointed that he mostly asked questions about teaching rather than about doing the job in the library.  They were all rapid fire questions as well.  There was no discussion really until briefly at the end of the interview.  He has been interviewing for a month already and won't make a decision for another month.  I don't feel very positive about it, but I guess you never know.  I just wrote my thank you letter and will put it in the mail tomorrow.

In other news, school is very busy and I come home exhausted every day.  I did get my portfolio put together and turned it in yesterday.  At this point, I don't even know if I care any more.  I'm really tired of some of the students who have no respect for anyone and feel that they should be able to do whatever they please.

UIL contest is this weekend and I'm so ready for it to be over.  Next week I have to write reports for my grants that I won this year and have my reconstitution interview.  Thankfully I'm taking Friday off.  Josh and I are going to Fiesta Fest at Six Flags and we'll get to ride a brand new coaster before it's open to the public.

I think I'm going to head to bed with a book and read until I can't keep my eyes open, which shouldn't be too long.

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

On a whim...

So it's been a frustrating year work-wise.  I feel I haven't been much of a librarian this year.  I am mostly fixing technology issues and doing menial tasks instead promoting reading, doing research, and all the other things I should be doing.  Now with the reconstitution situation, it's just piling things on.  I finally started working on my portfolio this week and it's already fairly thick.  I have to turn it in by May 12 so I should make it.

So this past weekend I decided to just look and see what other job openings might be available in other districts in the city.  To my surprise there was an opening posted for one of the top high schools in the city.  A school where 93% of graduates go on to college.  The average scores on SAT and ACT tests are above the national average.  I was sure it would be a coveted and difficult position to obtain, but I decided to put in my application anyway.  I completed the lengthy online application and then took a 45 minute insight test.  Two days later I finally finished an updated resume that I submitted as well.  Yesterday I told my library facilitator that I had applied.  She of course hated to hear that I was thinking of leaving the district, but she also understood.  She knows that most of us are not getting to do the jobs that we are supposed to do.  I haven't told my principal yet since I was waiting to see if I would get called for an interview.  Today I got the call.  My phone rang while I was driving so I couldn't answer it.  (We have a city ordinance that prohibits talking on cell phones while driving.)  I got to my destination and checked the message and sure enough it was the district calling to set up an interview.  I called them back and have tentatively scheduled for next week on Monday morning.  Now I have to tell my principal.  I think she will take it ok and will be supportive of it.

Now I have to figure out what to wear and start studying some potential interview questions.  Sometimes I am not a good interviewee if I get hit with a question I have no idea how to answer.  Before I came down to San Antonio, I spent a lot of time working out answers to potentially tricky questions.  I think I still have those files somewhere.

Well, I have to go clean the house.  We have company coming this weekend.  My cousin, Rob, and his wife are coming from the Dallas area.  They are moving down here in June and need to start house hunting.  They will be here on Friday.  The house isn't too bad, but I need to vaccum, do some laundry, and pick up things here and there.

Monday, April 27, 2015

A Colorado Bulldog Kind of Day

The whole last minute attitude of the school and district I work for is about to drive me crazy.  I find out on Friday, that the library and lab is going to be used in the afternoons for the next two weeks - never mind that I have an 8th grade technology assessment that I'm required to give (per the district).  Never mind that the ELA classes have a short window to complete their iStation and SRI testing.  Never mind that I have a Scrabble class that meets 7th period every day.  So I spent the day re-configuring the schedule, creating a worksheet for the classes to do after the test, and scrambled to shift my Scrabble class to another room.

I haven't worked on my portfolio since the big meeting about what a big deal it was (and then was told not to think about it until testing was over).  Now I have start working fixed assets.  And getting ready for UIL.  And work on the portfolio.  And process the new books.  And clean up the huge mess that is my library.  Must I go on?

So when I came home from school today, I made myself a Colorado Bulldog.  It is mighty tasty and makes me feel relaxed.  Now I'm watching The Big Bang Theory that was recorded on my DVR.  Once that's done, I'll go pay my bills online.  Then I'll read a book until I can't stay awake.  I've come to learn that I should try to leave work at work.  It's not that I always do, but once I'm home, that should really be my time.  And so it is.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Testing Time

This week will be our exciting state mandated tests.  I had to teach for three days straight last week covering dictionary skills and prefixes/suffixes.  It was exhausting.  I'm not used to doing that much talking and standing.  I spent all day Friday working on computers trying to get them ready for testing.  One of the alternate state tests requires using a computer and it's been a painstaking process to make sure that the test site will load and run correctly.  The site doesn't play nicely with Chrome so it has to be opened using Internet Explorer.  Then you have to make sure that Java runs.  If adobe flash isn't updated, then I have to update it.  The same goes for Java.  It's a tedious process and I had to check almost 80 computers.  I even went up to school on Saturday to work.  I did some computer checks and then worked on my portfolio that I haven't touched in three weeks.  I went in at 11:00 yesterday morning and stayed until 5:30.  Today I went up to work with Matt (though it's is day off).  I had to help him do some work up there.  I'm creating a spreadsheet for him to use to input his departments statistics.    He also has to work a bunch of technology tasks as part of his job training and I helped him with that.  Today he had to make a flyer for his department.

Josh's graduate recital is next weekend.  He wants me to make these homemade lemon cookies for him.  I'm not sure if I'm going to have time, but I'll try.  Matt and I are going to the Doobie Brothers concert on Friday evening.  Before that we're heading up to Austin for an errand he has to run.  We have Friday off from school because of the Fiesta celebration going on this week.  We're going to NIOSA (Night in Old San Antonio) on Wednesday which is basically a giant food fest.

Well, Matt is about to take over the tv to watch the Spurs game and I'm going to be going to bed early in preparation for tomorrow.  Sorry for the long drought in posting - it's been kind of busy around here.

Saturday, April 04, 2015

Sick on a Three Day Weekend

Matt was kind enough to share his cold with me.  I started getting sick on Wednesday and was really feeling it on Thursday.  I probably should have stayed home from school, but I forced myself to go though I didn't accomplish much.  Thankfully Friday was a holiday so I stayed in bed all day.  I'm feeling better today, but not completely 100%.  At least I'm on the couch and not in the bed.  The house is relatively clean because I cleaned it last week.  My ex-husband was coming over to take a headshot for Josh.  He needed a new one for his recital flyer and his website.  So of course I had to clean the house before he came over.  It's still clean though I never actually got to my bathroom and closet.  That is something I should probably work on today.  I have loads of laundry that need to be done.  I also need to pay some bills.  I should also start working on the program for the upcoming band concert that I can't play in.  Josh's graduate recital is the same day as the concert.  We will be heading to Houston for the day.

Now that Easter is almost here Matt is looking forward to having pizza and coke again.  I'm looking forward to drinking a margarita.  Next weekend we have dinner plans with my uncle Dave and his wife.  (Dave was married to my aunt Barb who is my dad's sister, but they divorced, but he's still part of the family and he played his trumpet in my wedding.)  His wife Linda is very sweet and has been communicating with me via Facebook.

I'm having to put together a portfolio for work.  Our school is in a precarious position since we have not met Academic Yearly Progress (for No Child Left Behind) for the 4th year now.  This puts us in a phase called reconstitution where everyone on the campus must reapply for their jobs next year.  Part of the process includes putting together a portfolio showing what we have done to help improve the academic environment of the campus.  I'm not really worried about my job as I feel I've been doing a good job overall.  But I still have to put a portfolio together and it's something that is just going to take some time.  We got an email on Wednesday about having the portfolios at a meeting on Monday.  I had made some notes, but hadn't yet put anything together.  I spent the last couple of days at school last week working on it.  The end of the year is coming fast and there are so many things that have to get done.  I have to work on fixed assets soon and put together a list of equipment that must get picked up over the summer.  UIL contest is coming up which conflicts with Josh's graduation.  But school will be out in just two short months.  I'll be glad to have the summer break.

Matt and I are planning to play at Scrabble Nationals in Reno, NV.  We may plan a short trip over to San Francisco after the tournament.  I've never been there and I'd like to go to California's Great America as well.  Thankfully we have a tax refund we can use to cover the trip.  I think our airfare is going to be covered by a Scrabble friend who is giving it to us as a wedding present.

Well, I think I'll go start a load of laundry.  I should start being somewhat productive soon.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

End of March already?

Where does the time go?  School will be out in just a little over two months from now.  I have so much to get done before then.  I guess it will either get done or it won't.  It's been difficult to get stuff done in my library this week.  The temperatures are slightly rising outside which means the district shuts the heat off and pumps cold air into our building for unknown reasons.  It might be 70 degrees outside, but it's 64 degrees in my library.  I stay huddled at my desk with my electric blanket plugged in.

So my students did well at the Scrabble tournament.  There were 27 teams total.  One of my students didn't show up the morning of, but thankfully one of the other student's mother brought some of his cousins along so he partnered with a cousin.  They placed 6th, 9th, and 11th in the tournament.  I thought that was a success coming from an inner-city school competing against mostly private school students.  They were nervous before they started playing but after they all won their first games, they realized they were better than they thought.

Matt's birthday was on Wednesday.  I took him out to dinner at a steak restaurant.  I feel bad that I didn't get him a real present.  My bank account was suffering this month after buying his Valentine's present and then hit with a subscription renewal for Lumosity that I hadn't planned for.  It would have been ok had I gotten my reimbursement for the trip I took for work in February.  I asked about it last week and was told that the lady who takes care of that has been out on jury duty for two weeks and I wouldn't get it until next Friday.  I even had to borrow money from our tax refund to pay all of the bills this month.  I'll pay it back when I get reimbursed, but it's been frustrating.  So Matt's birthday present was the Lumosity renewal since he had mentioned he wanted to start using it again.

So I've been completely lazy today.  It's almost 3 and I haven't showered or changed out of pajamas.  I'm looking pretty grim at the moment.  I did start dinner in the crockpot though.  I'm trying a recipe for pepper steak. I've been finding all sorts of interesting recipes on Pinterest.  The crockpot lasagna I made turned out good, but it was too much food for two people.  I should start cutting the recipes in half which is what I did with the pepper steak recipe.  I think I'll even make a cake for dessert - a belated birthday cake for Matt.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Time for some Scrabble

I can't believe that my spring break is already gone.  I didn't get much of anything done though I did read two books.  I rested a lot.  I made shirts for our Scrabble tournament that we are going to this weekend.  I got my hair cut.  I did some shopping but didn't buy anything significant - just stuff I needed for the trip.  I went to Scrabble club tonight.  I had a good night.  I averaged over 400 points a game.  I was losing the last game by about 40 points until I bingoed out with the word "WINNABLE."  I tried playing "BEANINGS" first, but it was challenged off.  I finally found winnable and wasn't positive it was good, but was fairly certain.  I also played a 104 point bingo in my second game.  I couldn't believe that my opponent forgot the D-hook for the word "JINN"  (DJINN).  He played off two other D's before I was able to play my word "TRAGEDY" for 104 points.

I need to go to bed, but I'm waiting for the last shirt in the dryer.  I realized I had the wrong size for one of my students so I picked up another shirt tonight before Scrabble practice but I couldn't wash it until after I got home.  I have the iron on ready to go - just need the shirt.  If it's not going to be dry in the next few minutes, I'm going to go to bed and will finish it in the morning.  Most everything else is packed and ready to go.  We have to leave by 8:30 to go pick up the suburban that I am renting.  We pick up students at 9;45 and hit the road by 10:00 a.m.  I think it will be a fun trip.  I hope my kids do ok.  If they draw well, they should have some good games.

Well, I'm going to go check on the shirt and call it a night.  I'll try to post the results this weekend.  We will be getting back late Saturday night.  Here's some pictures of our stuff and the T-shirts I made.