Friday, November 28, 2008

Thursday and Friday

I hope you all had a peaceful Thanksgiving. We had dinner for ten at our house but my mom did the turkey, dressing and gravy. Thanks mom, it was delicious. My dad also helps out in the kitchen a lot. I did do some of the prep work and cooking but they did the hard part. Oh, and we cleaned my house. Hubby says it's nice to have people over once in a while so the house gets a good cleaning. Smart ass.
The chief chefs. Grandma and Grandpa, my parents.

Grandpa had an audience when getting ready to carve the bird. Please Grandpa, drop me a morsel.

This is me with my younger sister. We don't look a bit alike. She's my mom and I'm all dad.
It was a good day, no one got mad at anyone else.
That was Thursday, now for Friday.
Yes, we went shopping. We got to bed around midnight after I listed out the items we would shop for along with locations. I dragged Hubby out of bed at 3:15 AM. We arrived at Penneys at 4:00, got what we needed then on to Best Buy for our Christmas present, a Garmin GPS. BB opened at 5:00, it was 4:55 and the line to get in was around the back of the store! Decided to go to Pep Boys because they had almost the same model for 10 bucks more. It was worth it to stand in a much shorter line except when we got in they were out of the one we wanted. We wanted the model that speaks the street names. Back to Best Buy and by now everyone was in the store. Hub dropped me off at the door, I went in and had it by the time he got in. They had a great line system set up through the appliance dept. It was like Disney World. the line moved very quickly and efficiently.
5:30 Next on to Toys R Us for a talking Elmo for our 3 yr old niece. Holy name of Jesus! The store was packed and the lines were snaking through the store. People couldn't shop because the lines were through the aisles. We waited in a line for about 10 minutes then an employee came to our part of the line and said we were all in the line for electronics. I asked how would we know and he pointed to two blue tape arrows on the floor going in different directions. I said, "Oh, I see it now clear as day, those arrows explain it all." Insert eye roll here. That was the only time I was somewhat snarky. I did feel bad about that later, that poor kid. We decided to leave without Elmo. Upon leaving there were three managers up front marveling how smoothly the lines were moving. I said, "not in the back, it's a nightmare" and would have told them how I really felt but Mike dragged me out the door.
Next stop; Target and of course there was a line to get in, they opened at 6:00. We got in very quickly and headed back to electronics. Where everyone in the store was. There was a roadblock of shopping carts where everyone had abandoned them. Eventually got what we wanted and left.
Next A.C. Moore, Circuit City and Bed Bath & Beyond where we were successful in 2 out of 3 stores. CC was out of what we wanted.
All that shopping and we returned home, were back in bed by 7:45 and didn't get up until noon. All totalled we would have spent $478.00 including tax but with the sales we spent $253.00 tax included for a savings of $225.00, just under 50%.
Now it's 8:00 pm, my 10 yr old nephew is spending the night and we're watching Kung Fu Panda. I have my feet up.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Flaws and All

Click HERE for the most beautiful song.


Your user ID or password is incorrect.
User ID
I forgot my user ID
I forgot my password
I get this message a lot. It seems that I cannot keep straight all the user IDs, passwords and pin numbers that I have. Let's see, I have them for banking at two banks, on line bill paying accounts, catalogs that I buy from, paypal account, ebay account and more I can't remember. That's the problem, I can't remember. Now you would think that I'd write them down somewhere and have them handy but nooooo, not me.
I found something that I'd been searching for for hubby on ebay. The auction closes in 45 minutes and of course I can't remember my log-in info. I did the I forgot my user ID thing about 15 minutes ago and haven't received the email. Grrrrr
My brain is so full of stuff I have to remember that some things just get pushed aside. Smarten up woman and write down these things. This is so frustrating!

Monday, November 24, 2008

NYC again

Back in October when I was in New York City I snapped some shots that reminded me that I wasn't in Kansas anymore. Well, Rochester anyway.
I'm not sure what kind of salon this is but it reminds me of that HBO show Mind of a Married Man when he would go to the massage parlor and get a "happy ending".
One thing that I noticed was the noise of the city. There is always an emergency vehicle going somewhere and I was amazed at the fact that people don't get out of the way. Of course in heavy traffic there's no where to go. I wouldn't want to be the one waiting for help to show up.

Honking. Everyone honks, especially cabs. You can be 25 stories up and still hear the honking and the sirens. I really don't mind it, it makes me feel like I'm in the heart of the city. There are areas that you cannot honk and as the sign says, you can be out $350. if you do.


Where else can you see a sign that's 10 stories high?
The only Target store I saw was in Queens.

Traffic lights are huge. I guess you don't notice their size when you're in the car looking up but on a double decker bus you better make sure you stay seated or it's gonna get ya.

I need one of these for the front yard. I hate finding packages left by other dogs. Let me rephrase that, left by the owners of said dogs.

At one point I felt like saying this to a few people. But I wouldn't wear it on a shirt.

A very sobering sign. It sure made me decide not to cross at this intersection in Queens.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

My week in review, well just Thursday

This week was hard at school. We have four kindergarten classes, two in the am and two in the afternoon. I work in all of them. In one of the afternoon classrooms there is a boy who is obsessed with Tinkerbell. Everything is about her. He flits around the room with his arms bent at the elbows and his hands flapping. This week he's started to burst out laughing over something that must be going on in his head. He will go up to a student and jump at them and grab them, shake them and then push them down. He needs someone to reign him in and that someone is me. I am tired when I come home from school. Every Thursday I have his class alone from 3:00 until dismissal while the teacher is in a meeting. She hates leaving me because he's not the only difficult student but the most difficult.
This Thursday at 3:10 my direction was for the boys to get their coats and backpacks, bring them to their seats to get ready to go home. Then it was the girl's turn. While I'm zipping a jacket I look up in time to see this kid flitting around and then trip. He is heading head first with momentum into the edge of the table. I saw and heard him hit. By the time I got to him (think of O.J. Simpson in the airport in the Hertz commercials. Okay, so I didn't leap over the table but ran round it pretty darn quick!) the first few seconds where there is silence was over and he was screaming. With blood all over his face. Then all over his hands. Then all over mine. He had it smeared everywhere. I thought I had encountered all the body fluids that a kindergarten may bring forth but I forgot about blood. Now it's complete. I hope. I clutched his arm and told the other students to continue to get ready to go while I went to the nurse's office. On the way there I grabbed an adult to cover my adult-less room. Turns out he had a cut under his eyebrow and was going to need stitches. We got him and me cleaned up and by this time I had to leave, I was late for intramurals.

Every Thursday after school until 4:30 I go to intramurals in the gym to be with a fourth grade girl with Down's Syndrome. It figures the one day I'm late she has an incident in the locker room and the regular PE teacher, a woman wasn't there, she had a substitute and it happened to be a man so he couldn't really go in. He was rather put out. I had to pull her out of the volleyball game, speak with her and deal with her wrath. I worried about both of these episodes all evening and finally emailed my principal so she would be up to speed first thing in the morning if she had to deal with any irate people. Later that day there were two Mallo Cups (my fave) in my mailbox from her. She told me nothing is that important that I have worry all evening and email her at 11:10 pm. My student did go to the doctor and the cut was glued shut rather than stitches. He came to school Friday with an ugly cut and a swollen and purple eye but was fine.

We went out to pick our youngest up from college Saturday and he'll be home for a week. On the way I saw these trees with beautiful red berries. Our oldest son will not be able to come home from New York City for Thanksgiving. Welcome to the real world, his nursing schedule doesn't allow enough travel time. I hope he will be able to get home for Christmas. Keep your fingers crossed.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Thanks Lake Ontario.
I'm reading Cody's mind and he's thinking, "I'm sorry but you know I'm going to bring this stuff in with me".

While fluffy snow is very pretty, the dogwood tree looks like it has cotton balls on it, I'm just not ready for the white stuff yet.

On another note, my oldest who lives in New York City got a letter in the mail telling the residents that they would be filming a TV show on his street soon. I asked him if he knew what the show was. He said, "some show called
Nurse Jackie". I'd never heard of it but asked if it was a porno. It sort of sounds like a porno title. Maybe just to me.
Last week they filmed scenes for a new show on Showtime starring Edie Falco as Nurse Jackie. He's only lived there four months and already has Hollywood in his neighborhood plus he works not far from where they shoot 30 Rock.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Good Morning!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Things That Go Bump in the Night

I live on a corner and our house is the last house on our street, then the street has a sharp bend and becomes a different street. On the west side of our house there are no more houses and just some woods. So...
We stayed up late Saturday night watching SNL. Right at the end of the show there was a very funny skit with Beyonce and Justin Timberlake. Hope you saw it. We turned off the TV at 1:00 and settled in for a nice peaceful sleep until 2:45 am when I was so rudely awakened to a noise. I asked Hubby, "did you hear that?!" He did and thought since it was windy out our swing blew over which it has in the past. He got up, no that wasn't it so he looked out front and saw a young kid, he thought a teenager, run across the front yard, then he stopped at our driveway and ran back towards the woods. Hubby looked out the kitchen window...
and this is what he found.

While he got dressed, I called 911. There was no one in the car and when the police officer arrived (all 5 feet of her) she opened the door and you could see where some one's head had an encounter with the windshield. There was some blood but not a lot. There was no smell of alcohol in the car but he had been snacking on some chicken and french fries because they were all over his car. I don't think he had been drinking because there are three signs at the end of the street warning you about the curve, he maneuvered around them, drove through a big pile of leaves (Hubby raked on Friday) around some other trees and managed to stay on the other side of our rock wall. I was impressed. Over they years we've had cars miss the curve (hence the reason for the rock wall and the fact that I love rocks) but they always took out the signs and never got this close to our house.

The flat bed tow truck driver had to get out of a warm bed also.
Several police cars were searching the neighborhood for the driver but they didn't find him. The police were going to get the K-9 unit out and look for him. Must have been a slow night. They'll eventually catch up to him since they know where the car resides.

The excitement was over, back to my nice cozy, king size bed. zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Today I completed the trifecta of grossness. The triad of nastiness. A trinity if you will.

As you may or may not know I work in special ed in kindergarten. So far this year I've had to help a little boy in the bathroom who wet his pants. He had on jeans and sandals with socks. This kid was soaked from his waist to the tip of his toes. I took him to the nurse (and as luck would have it, she was out of her office), put him in the bathroom telling him to take off his socks and sandals first then his jeans while I looked in the closet for dry clothes. Ten minutes later I knock on the bathroom door and open it. There he stands with his pants down around his ankles with the sandals still on. Now I had to wrestle a pair of cold, urine soaked jeans and socks. UGH.

A few weeks later when the afternoon kindergartners arrived the bus driver tells me that someone had a dropped a deuce in their pants, the whole bus reeked. It didn't take long to discover the purveyor of the poopy pants. I took her to the nurse who is at lunch and one of the ladies from the main office is covering for her. We just look at each other and wonder who gets to be on clean up duty. I did it because I know her and thought it would be easier for her. But who knew a girl that little could produce what I had to wrangle out of her panties. UGH.

What's the last that has to happen to complete the trio? Vomit. Today was my lucky day. This child said he didn't feel well, he felt like he was going to throw up. Thanks for the 5 second warning dude. The other teacher managed to get a plastic grocery bag and as he's barfing in it lo and behold we realize there's a damn hole in the bottom and it's leaking all over the floor. Lots of it. Now I'm trying to get another bag up and over said leaky bag. While the throw up was spewing. Now I've been a mother for 22 years. I've weathered countless events like these including projectile vomiting but never ever have I heard someone toss their cookies like this. It sounded like it he was retching from the bowels of his stomach, it was bubbling up and exploding out. Teachers from several classrooms down the hall came in to see what was going on it was so loud. I got him to the nurse's office and Oh, a miracle, she was actually there! Funny thing was as this was all happening I didn't smell it or gag but thinking about it now makes me queasy. UGH.

It was like I was scrubbing for surgery the way I washed my hands after dealing with all these incidences. UGH.

Aren't you glad you stopped by and that I have no photographic evidence?

I'm thinking this should be standard equipment in classrooms around the country.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Road Trip

I had Tuesday off from school for Veteran's Day
and hubby took the afternoon off. We decided to go on a road trip.
Getting on the New York State Thruway.

We travel this stretch of highway often to get to Cape Cod, the 1000 Islands, Adirondack Mountains and NYC. I wish we were going to New York City to see our oldest but alas, that's a road trip for another time.

We were travelling along listening to a radio station that was playing music from the 1970's, the years I was a teenager. While most of the time I love listening to that music for some reason today it made me feel very melancholy. On top of that I saw this sign. Kevin went to Binghamton University for four years when he was in nursing school. I thought of all the times we went to visit him, took him to school and brought him home and now he's not so easy to get to. You can guess what started leaking. I am a sentimental old fool.

We missed our exit off the thruway so we had to go out of our way a little bit but in doing so we saw the Sunshine Cafe. The picture doesn't show it but with the dismal sky, the yellow truly looked like a warm, sunny oasis. So back to the road trip...

Our destination was the
turkey restaurant that we often stop at on the way home from vacations. It's in Cicero, a small suburb of Syracuse. Yes, we drove 90 miles for a turkey club sandwich. But it's oh so good. The bread is homemade and lightly toasted, the turkey is hand carved and warm, not like turkey slices from the deli. The bacon is just right and they use real mayo. I always buy light mayo and seldom have the real thing. Plus as a bonus, unbeknown to us, Tuesday is free piece of pie day with your meal.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veteran's Day

During peacetime and war our Veterans were there for our country.
Today and everyday, honor them.

Our nephew was in the Army for 7 years and did his basic training at Fort Sill in Oklahoma. He then spent time in the 10th Mountain Division out of Fort Drum. During this time he trained and became an Army Ranger where part of his training was to live in the swamps of Louisiana for three weeks, taking nothing with him. After two years he re-upped for five more and was offered the position of instructor at Army Jump School in Fort Benning, Georgia or serve overseas at Schofield Barracks in Honolulu. While he loved jumping out of planes he chose Hawaii where he and his wife lived for 4 years. My great nephew was born there Sept. 13, 2001. He was trained in urban warfare eventually becoming an instructor. He also reached the rank of Sergeant.
He decided not to re-enlist and was to spend his last year teaching the tactics of urban warfare to fellow soldiers at Fort Campbell but his pedigree caught up with him. The Army realized how valuable his skills were and sent him to Iraq. He served there with the 101st Airborne were he and his men went up ahead of the troops and cleaned out vacant buildings of snipers. He earned a Bronze Star for something that happened during this time but has never told us what it was.
Today is he out of the Army, is married and has three children. I'm sending you a big hug today!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Community Service

Both of my boys were in Cub Scouts and their father was their den leader. They subsequently crossed over into Boy Scouts and enjoyed the scouting experience. Cameron particularly loved it being that he is a social butterfly (his favorite part of little league was the dugout, forget about the game) and was active in the troop until he turned 18. Their dad was pretty involved in the troop also but I sometimes thought it was cult like but that's just me. I do think it's a great organization especially for boys that may not have a male role model in their lives. The Boy Scouts of America do have some issues in my opinion but that's for another time. Let's just say they're too worried about gay people and not worried enough about pedophiles.

While Cub Scouts is fun, there is much more work with Boy Scouts. Both of my sons became Eagle Scouts. To reach that rank you have to earn 21 merit badges, hold leadership positions within the troop, do volunteer work and serve your community. You also have to do an eagle project that takes much planning and organizing.

My oldest son's project was to collect school supplies to assemble kits that would be sent to children in Afghanistan through Church World Service. He solicited donations from businesses and the public. He went to the home-ec teacher at school and asked if any of the students would be willing to sew the canvas bags needed for each kit. His project was very successful and he put together over 20 school kits.

My youngest son's project was to benefit Golisano Children's Hospital at Strong here in Rochester NY. The children's hospital rooms were equipped with a VCR and at the time of my son's project the hospital was just switching over to DVD. Problem was they didn't have many DVD's for the kids to watch. They were also going to get a few Playstations. He organized a DVD/Playstation donation drive for the hospital. He solicited businesses for new DVD's and games and also put collection bins in each of our elementary schools and the middle and high school as well as at the community center and public library.

It took a while to come up with a project and both projects took over 100 hours to complete.It's a lot of hard work to become an Eagle Scout and that's why the majority of Boy Scouts don't do it. One of the required merit badges is Citizenship in the Community. Click on the link to see what these two scouts came up with for this community service. I'm sure my boys wished they had thought of it.

I'm not sure how the interviewer kept a straight face.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

My husband just pointed out to me that Obama
is the first president that is younger than we are! I'm feeling older everyday.

Friday, November 07, 2008

R.I.P. dear garden

You know how I love my flower garden.
I can't wait for it to come alive in the spring.
Now it's dead.A few days ago the Japanese maple in our front yard seemed to turn to a flaming red overnight.

A few days later, the tree is naked.
This is why I don't like fall.

On another note, I don't know what's going on with Blogger but it doesn't post your pictures in order anymore . If you move them around to the order you want they won't enlarge when you click on them.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Phew!! I'm glad it's over.

I don't think I could have lasted another day with all the campaign ads. I don't know about your area but in mine there were some pretty nasty races going on. It's unfortunate when you have candidates running negative ads which in turn makes the opponents run ads to refute those ads and then fire back insults. It makes me not want to vote for either of you. It's a waste of time, energy and money. Instead of telling me about the other's foibles, tell me what you will do for us.

But it's over now. I think the best man won. Naysayers, remember that change will not happen over night, it may not happen in a year, give him a chance to see what he can do.

I think McCain had many things going against him. For one, he is the same political party as the lame duck in the White House now. People were afraid it would be more of the same.

His stand on the war in Iraq. This country cannot support two wars at the same time. His promise that our servicemen and women would come home with honor when we won the war the war in Iraq was a turn off for many people. While America supports our troops, many think they shouldn't be there. It's a losing battle. There will never be peace in that country and we're in a quagmire over there. Focus on Afghanistan.

Sarah Palin; I think she was the wrong choice. I'm sure she's got some smarts, she wouldn't have gotten to where she is now if she didn't but I thought her inexperience was glaring.

I thought McCain's concession speech was good, he came across gracious and I liked how he expressed to all Americans the need to band together and support our new president. What I didn't like was some of his supporters in the crowd. To boo when Obama's name was mentioned was childish and to boo him when McCain expressed his condolences to Obama on the death of his grandmother was classless. Maybe that's just me, I was brought up to not boo at the opposing team. At the ref, maybe :)

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Monday, November 03, 2008


Two weeks ago our kindergarten went on a field trip to a farm market where we learned about farmers, vegetables, played in a maze and got to pick a little pumpkin.
I love these gourds with the colors and textures. Some are down right alien looking.

A different type of gourd.

For most of my years in education I've worked in fifth grade with 2 years in second grade and one in first grade. Last year I split my day between fifth graders and kindergarten. This year I'm strictly with the little ones. Let me say this; the hardest grade I've worked in is kindergarten. It is exhausting. The students are blank slates with little or no background knowledge on anything. It seems like I talk all day long, explain things over and over again and hear my name called constantly. When I come home I want it very quiet. No television, no talking, nothing. Several times a week I end up taking a cat nap on the couch after school. Today, and I'm embarrassed to say it; I stripped down and got right down in the bed, under the covers for a two hour nap!!

Oh and my favorite grade to be in...