Monday, May 31, 2010

Great Weekend

I really enjoyed the long weekend. My husband and I went out to eat Friday night for our anniversary. Saturday, the family (minus one teenager) went out to eat, then my son and I went to see Shrek 4.Good movie, better than I expected. Sunday morning, the whole family, all five of us, went to church together which hasn't happened in a long time. Last night, four of us had a great dinner, dessert made by my daughter, and a fun game of Scrabble. Today, hubs and I went to breakfast alone. I took a nap. Then, all five of us went to the beach for a few hours. My husband cooked "juicy Lucies" at the beach (two patties with cheese in the middle). We even took the dog. It was a fantastic weekend!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Monday Movie Meme

Feature Presentation : Soldier On

Visit the Bumbles Blog where the MMM theme is "soldiers" in honor of Memorial Day. War movies don't usually top my list of entertainment with two exceptions.

One of my favorite movies of all time is The Patriot (2000) starring Mel Gibson. Set during the American Revolution, a peaceful farmer is driven to lead a militia after his son is murdered by a British officer. The right combination of drama and action for my taste.

The second "soldier" movie that comes to mind is Saving Private Ryan (1998) starring Tom Hanks. Set during WWII, a group of men go behind enemy lines to retrieve a soldier whose brothers have been killed in battle. Tense and graphic at times, but so worth it!

Thank you to our soldiers who have fallen and to those who are still in service to our country.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Do you ever Wonder?

Things I sometimes Wonder:

Does everyone spit in the shower?
Does anyone else flush a public toilet with their foot?
And last, does anyone else have dreams that feel so real that when you wake up, you feel it was real for a long, long, time? As if you just can't shake it?

Friday, May 28, 2010

Just Wondering

I hate public restrooms! And I've made it my life's mission to never use a porta-potty again. But, let's face it. Sometimes you have to use a public restroom. If you're in the middle of a marathon shopping trip, chances are, at some point, you're going to have to go.

What is the first thing you do when you open a stall? For me, I look at the seat to make sure it's basically acceptable. I refuse to clean up after a stranger! Second, I make sure there is toilet paper. I could kick myself when I forget to check that! So, how about you?

Yes, it's a gross topic, but hey! I was just wondering. At least I didn't include a picture!

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Today (Friday) is my anniversary. Not my "blog"versary, but my real-life, partner, friend, lover, husband-and-wife anniversary. We were both previously divorced, both have full custody of our children, and we had no idea how challenging a blended family would be. But today marks five years for us (a total of 8 1/2 years together). Here's to us!

On a different note, when we got married, May 28 fell on the Saturday after school was out. This year (and last year) we still have a week of school left after our anniversary. I wish we didn't. It was pretty nice having our anniversary AFTER the kids and I were out for the summer.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Thursday Thirteen

It was a Murphy's Law on Monday this week! Nothing major, thank goodness, but little blips on the screen of my life.

1. My car inspection failed.

2. I got a hair cut which is too short.

3. I forgot to pick up some cable equipment to turn in to the company.

4. I cooked a pretty involved dinner, and the kids didn't like my new recipe much.

5. Students didn't behave while I was gone from school.

6. I had a chiropractice adjustment, but my spine wouldn't move.

7. Nap was interrupted by the phone.

8. Nap was later interrupted by doorbell.

9. Dance tryouts didn't go as well as I hoped for my daughter.

10. I forgot stuff at the grocery store Sunday, so had to go back.

11. I didn't get to finish Lost from Sunday night (finally finished Tuesday night).

12. The last episode of 24 aired, and I loved that show (almost as much as Lost), and I still haven't had time to watch it.

13. I had to order an anniversary gift online and pay extra for quick shipping so it will get here in time.
Here's where you can visit more Thursday Thirteen!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Monday Movie Meme

Feature Presentation! - This week's MMM (hosted at The Bumbles Blog) is all about brothers. What "brotherly" movies can you think of?
Oh Brother Where Art There (2000) - I didn't like this movie when I first saw it, but my husband loves it, and it grows on you. There really are some funny moments, and George Clooney isn't hard to look at. Technically, it's not about brothers, but it was directed by the Coen brothers. Set in the South during the 1930's, it's about three escaped convicts who are on a wild-goose chase for some hidden treasure.
Legends of the Fall (1994) - This is a great movie! In fact, I think I want to re-watch it this weekend. This one is actually about brothers, although Brad Pitt isn't hard to look at, either! It's also set in the early 1900's, but this time in the wilderness of Montana. It explores the bonds between brothers, love, relationships, trust, betrayal. Anthony Hopkins also stars.

Rain Man (1988) - Definitely about brothers - totally opposite brothers. Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman put in great performances. When his father dies, Charlie (Cruise) finds out he has a brother to whom his father left his fortune. It turns out, the brother, Raymond, is an autistic savant who has been living in an institution. Charlie kidnaps Raymond and takes him on a cross-country adventure. Great movie!

Well, I gotta go. It's "Four minutes till Wapner!"

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Lunchskins Review

I just finished packing lunches for tomorrow's school day. Did you know that about 20 million plastic baggies are used each day? Neither did I. But I have this great new product to use now! It was invented by three moms (3greenmoms) who were tired of all these baggies clogging our landfills and wanted to make the world a better place.

Lunchskins are reusable, dishwasher safe, and convenient. And not only are you helping the environment when you use Lunchskins, you're also saving money, which for me is a great bonus!

Snack bags, sandwich bags, and sub bags are available starting at just $8 from They come in a variety of designs such as stripes, polka dots, fruits, buds, and animals as well as a variety of colors. I really like my pink sandwich bag! They are also a great idea for a fundraiser (so much better than selling candy!). What are you waiting for? Go check them out at!

This post was written for Family Review Network as part of a program for who provided the product for review.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Dog

We recently got new furniture, and we think we've trained the dog not to get on it. We bought him a really soft bed, and he seems to enjoy laying in it. The trouble? He doesn't seem to be able to control his peeing! He peed in his bed today, then he layed in it. So, we washed the bed, and we gave the dog a bath, and cleaned the floor where the bed had been.

But we have no idea why he's peeing in the house! He's getting old, yes, but still. Before we got our new furniture, he peed on the pillows on the couch and on some blankets upstairs (he's not allowed upstairs anymore - we got a gate to keep him from getting on the stairs). Right before the new furniture came, he got on the old loveseat and peed right in front of my husband and me. What is up with that dog? The vet didn't really have any suggestions, so I'm hoping maybe some of you do. We've got to get him to stop peeing in the house!

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Poetry of Phrases

I taught my 7th grade language arts classes how to identify and write different types of phrases: prepositional, appositive, infinitive, and participial. Then, we chose a topic and wrote several of each type of phrase. We then selected some and rearranged them into a poem. Here was one of my examples:

To be satisfied with life,
To have peace of mind,
Knowing your purpose,
Feeling content,
Security and warmth,
In your heart...
Beyond sadness.

Link your original writing at Weekend Writer's Retreat.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Friday Fill-ins

Won't you join us at Friday Fill-ins?

1. The song "Mayberry" by Rascal Flatts never fails to make me smile.
2. I'm looking forward to the day AFTER the last day of school!
3. George Lopez on TV is what I'm listening to right now. (my son's choice, not mine)
4. Potato salad must have mayonnaise and pimientos in it!
5. Sirloin tips, roll, and mashed potatoes left over from Texas Roadhouse was the best thing I ate today.
6. Today was long. In fact, this whole week was long!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to relaxing, tomorrow my plans include working on some kitchen renovations, and Sunday, I want to get my scrapbook supplies organized.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Thursday Thirteen

13 Signs that the End of the School Year is Near

1. End-of-Year Band Concerts to Attend. (fun band friends!)
2. Athletic and activity meetings to attend for the coming year.
3. Awards Ceremonies
4. National (Junior) Honor Society Ceremony
5. Tryouts for next year's teams (dance, athletics, color guard, etc.)
6. Field trips and parties
7. Textbook collection (I'll be glad when we go to electronic texts... someday)
8. Final exams
9. State testing scores issued
10. Registration for next year's courses
11. Registration for summer camps (athletic and church)

12. Grades to finalize
13. The best sign of the end of the school year? The cute countdown clock in my sidebar!

Monday, May 17, 2010

I Can't Wait!

I have a new widget in my sidebar. Can you tell I'm ready for summer? Get your own widget here.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

My husband and I have decided to eat less fast food and fried food, so I have a couple of new recipes I'm going to try.

Tonight (Sunday) we grilled chicken marinated in mesquite sauce and topped it with tomato, mushroom, and provolone. We had some grilled zucchini on the side. He and the kids also ate red beans and rice, which I don't like much.

Monday - We are trying a recipe from Laura's Lean Beef called Beef and Asparagus Pasta Toss.

Tuesday - We are tring a recipe for Imperial Chicken that I got from Tamy at Always Eat on the Good China. We'll have some rosemary potatoes (the lite version) and some green beans with it.

Wednesday through Friday? Not sure. Maybe some pasta, or hamburgers with lean beef, or more chicken.

Menu Plan Monday is sponsored by I'm an Organizing Junkie.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

It's Just My Opinion

Dead Time (Alan Gregory, #16) Dead Time by Stephen White

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I love Stephen White. But I was a little disappointed in Dead Time. It was good, don't get me wrong, and it had some twists and turns, but it didn't seem to flow as well as some of his previous Alan Gregory novels. I don't particularly like the character of Meredith, and a great deal of this book deals with her, plus I'm not fond of the direction he's taking with Alan and Lauren. So, it was good, but not one of my favorites.

View all my reviews >>

Friday, May 14, 2010

Friday Fill-ins

Visit Friday Fill-ins!

1. I just had Tex-Mex for dinner, and it was good!
2. It just is.
3. The third sentence on the 7th page of the book I'm reading: (Dead Time by Stephen White: "Eric, whose physique compared favorably to the shirtless man's, turned to Jules, his girlfriend." and it's a who-dun-it, not a romance!
4. A long, hot bath tickles my fancy.
5. I was walking all around the building looking for boxes today.
6. My husband makes me laugh!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to moving back in the house, tomorrow my plans include working on renovations and cleaning and taking my daughter to her band trip, and Sunday, I want to go to church and rest.

How about joining in?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Thursday Thirteen

My students are completing an assessment on The Giver by Lois Lowry tomorrow in class. Here are 13 things I hope they have gained from this unit.

1. The importance of memory.
2. Authors use symbols to represent conrete ideas.
3. Lowry intentionally didn't complete the ending so that her readers could perceive things based on their personal schema instead of hers.
4. Sameness is not the same thing as equality.
5. Each person was suited for his or her assignment based on aptitude, interests, and temperament.
6. There are different ideas about what makes a family a family.
7. Utopia to one person may not be Utopia to another person.
8. The Community controlled the number of children each family unit could have so that they would not experience over population.
9. The Community members worked to benefit the Community rather than self.
10. Jonas saved Gabriel from being released because he had feelings and memories and learned about love.
11. Precision of language was important in the Community.
12. The Receiver of Memory was called upon to give advice to the Committee of Elders since they didn't have the memories from which to draw wisdom.
13. There were pros and cons to the type of life described in the Community.

If you have never had a chance to read this young adult novel, I highly recommend it.
More Thursday Thirteen!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wednesday Rant

I'm so disheartened by some things I've seen in the local news lately. First, there was an incident at a high school in which a young man tore down the flag of another country and threw it in the trash. He says that it's because this flag was hanging higher than the American flag, but I think it was just hatred. And spite.

What disheartens me is not just that this happened, it's the reaction of some of the media who are calling him a hero! Yes! They are calling him brave for standing up for his beliefs. I call it cowardly. He just happened to be caught on security cameras, so he had to have an excuse for his actions. He claims he was "offended" by the flag. His mother said the school administration wouldn't remove it, so he decided to take matters into his own hands. I usually agree with certain news commentators and talk show hosts, but not this time. The student did not handle this correctly, and he deserves the three days' suspension he received, maybe more.

He is not a hero. One local talk show host even wants to establish a college fund for this boy because he comes from a single parent household. What? What about all of the other rule-abiding students who come from single parent households who don't tear down flags and throw them in the trash? This makes me angry, in case you couldn't tell.

Another sickening situation is the story that came out today about a "teacher" who "beat" a 13 year old student at a charter school. First of all, the teacher in question is not an educator. Charter schools are not required to hire certified, degreed professionals. Second, this charter school is for students who are habitual behavior problems, not that there is ever an excuse to lift a hand to a student. Third, the so-called teacher is dressed like a hoodlum and does not appear to be a professional in any sense of the word.

The incident was recorded by another student on a cell phone. Other students are heard plainly in the background laughing and the video pans to the other students at the end where the viewer can see them standing there simply looking on as if nothing were amiss. I watched the video, and I believe it is fake. It doesn't look like the teacher is actually hitting the student. At one point, the teacher gets into a karate-like stance. The student is almost smiling and doesn't appear to defend himself whatsoever. It looks completely staged. I don't know what gimmick they have going on, but I would bet my college degree that they are trying to use this "incident" for financial gain of some sort.

And that's my Wednesday rant. Anyone else want to post a Wednesday rant? Leave your link in the comments so I can come commisserate with you.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly book meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current read,
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page.

(Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!),

Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser

I got a new book this weekend that I'm anxious to read, but I have to finish Dead Time first, which is a pretty good book, by the way. Wish I had more time to read!
Fang, A Maximum Ride Novel
by James Patterson
Page 194
" 'Max has actually been a pretty good leader - she's kept you alive; she's taught you how to survive. I know you have your problems with her. I do, too.' He gave a litle laugh. 'But here you are: You're a flock and you need a leader. Angel says that she's the leader, and I guess you guys are agreeing to it.' "
I can't wait to read this!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Musing Mondays

Musing Mondays is hosted by Rebecca.

Do you have to carve out time in your day for reading (due to work and other obligations), or does your reading just happen naturally? (Question courtesy of MizB)
My answer: Yes, I carve out time to read. I almost always read before I go to bed. But I also take my book with me whenever I go to the doctor, dentist, orthodontist, somewhere that I know I will be waiting for a while. I sometime carve out time to read just before a nap on the weekends if I am lucky. I love to read. I'm currently reading Dead Time by Stephen White.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all of you with children! Mother's Day was established as a holiday in the United States by President Woodrow Wilson in 1914. Mother's Day is the busiest restaurant day of the year in the US. It is also the biggest holiday for long-distance phone calls. And, of course, sales for greeting cards, flowers, and even candy, are high on Mother's Day. For info on Mother's Day around the globe, you can click here.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

Camera Critters

This "squirrrely" animal is called an Abert's or Tassell-eared Squirrel. My husband and I got these shots last month at Lookout Mountain Nature Center near Golden, CO. It had just snowed leaving a beautiful, white blanket on the ground.

Abert's are the only squirrels that don't put away a store of food for winter. You can see them out in the snow foraging for food. They live almost exclusively among Ponderosa Pines.

This tree-dwelling squirrel is unique in that it has long tufts of fur on its ears. From a distance, you might think it was a small rabbit. They range in color from pale brown to dark black. Cute little guys, aren't they?
See more Camera Critters.

Friday, May 07, 2010

Company Girl Coffee

Hello and happy Friday! I hope you have something fun planned for the weekend. I will be putting primer on cabinets, going to the orthodontist, buying some furniture, and best of all, getting a massage.

Happy Mother's Day to all the mommies! Does anyone have big plans? I had dinner with my mom last Monday and plan to see her on Sunday. I also sent her flowers. My kids aren't old enough to take themselves shopping, but I got a handmade card from my son already. And he's 13! And if that isn't a big enough accomplishment, I actually got him to do the electric slide with me last night, thanks to Rachel Anne. And my computer is nice and clean now, too.

My family and I are going to try to eat healthier than we have been lately, so I was looking for some recipes this week that would be low in fat but still taste great. I found this recipe from Laura's Lean Beef called Beef and Asparagus Pasta Toss. Think we'll give a try soon! Have a great weekend!


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