Friday, June 29, 2007

Today is.....

Kenny's Birthday!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Summer School started today. Summer school. It's more like summer tutoring. But it sure pays well and it's only 2 days a week, 3 hours per day. And it's easy and actually fun! Plus I usually get to know a few students that I will have in the fall as well as a few students I have already had in class, so it's a good time. And did I mention the money is awesome? Well, it is. It didn't even bother me that I had to get up early. I'm used to sleeping in a little bit, but truthfully, I'm still up and coffeed and ready for the day before 8am. It's just in my blood.

Here are a couple pics from the backyard, the parts that are finished:
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I just added mulch to this awesome line of privacy trees...they are so low maintenance! You can see the garage sale chairs Kenny picked up for us and the hammock too. I can't wait to use it!
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The lillies that were already planted when we moved here...I love their color!
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More lillies and the new baby hostas I planted, suggested by Lori!

To see what this area looked like before, go back to this post and look towards the bottom for the pictures.

There is still a small ugly old deck to rip out, but first I have to remove all the rocks from around it. Talk about tedious work. We're keeping the rocks and going to use them eventually around the patio that we'll have poured to replace the day anyway. I'm thinking that's going to be next summer at this point! Kenny's head has spun around twice since I mentioned the patio. His exact words..."You're never happy! We just finished this huge landscaping project and all I want to do is enjoy it and you're already on to the next topic of complaining! Give it a rest woman!" I can't help it. I'm a do-er. I just do. Everything. And all the time too. I never ever stop. I guess that's why I'm a teacher, because there's always something that needs "done."

Anyway, look at these lillies in our backyard:
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They need something....see how they are slightly matted in the front?? Okay all you plant bloggers....what do I do with that? I love these lillies, and I want them to be there for many years, so how do I get rid of the matted look??

Sunday, June 24, 2007

We're Done!

I am thrilled....and tired! We are finally done with the front landscaping. Can I get a Hallelujah!?!?!?!
What do you think? Not bad for first-timers! And we really did start from scratch too! Ignore the ugly yellowish shudders....the new ones were ordered yesterday and take a VERY long time to get here, but it will be well worth the wait!

To celebrate our finished landscaping project, we went to the fireworks that our city had tonight. We drove to the area where we could park and find a place on the grass to sit and watch the show, and before we got out of the truck, it was hard to tell if we were in a good location to see or not, so we waited in the parked truck for a few minutes. It was a super pleasant evening, perfectly warm and so the windows in the truck are down. A guy comes walking by on Kenny's side of the truck, walking towards the back of the truck. He has no idea we are in the truck (it's dark) so he stops dead in his tracks just pass the back passenger door on Kenny's side, with his back towards us. He drops his pants (and I mean all the way to the ground!!) and starts peeing!!! Keep in mind, this isn't the country, we are smack dab in the suburbs! I can see his bare ass in the rearview (haha, REAR view, get it?) on Kenny's side and then Kenny says, "Hey man, you got a nice ass." I couldn't believe he said that!!!! Wait a minute, yes I can. He's so like that. Anyway, the guy is COMPLETELY startled and probably didn't even know what to say, so he says, "Well, thank you," and then bolts. His two friends were about 3 car-lengths in front of our truck and saw the whole thing and were cracking up. It was pretty funny!!

Saturday, June 23, 2007


My hands hurt sooo bad!! Waaaahhh!!
I know, I know, quit bitching. But they really do hurt! Kenny and I worked ALL DAY outside on the landscaping. And you won't get to see the finished project until tomorrow because that's when the mulch gets here. We got up early, for him anyway, at 10am, and went to the landscaping place. We were directed to this particular place because a friend said if we mentioned his name we would get a discount. After walking around not knowing what in the world we were doing, one of the guys starting mapping things out for us. You have to remember we started from scratch. Actually, below scratch, because we had ripped out all the nasty shrubs and there were gaping holes to deal with. Anyway, 2 hours later, the truck was loaded up with plants, hence, the mulch having to wait until tomorrow! And we did get a deal, a 30% discount. Talk about awesome!! We stopped at home depot and rented a rototiller and got lunch too. Then it all began. Thank goodness it wasn't hot today....I want to say it was about 80 degrees and sunny, but not the typical hot & humid Michigan weather. Kenny rototilled while I cut out more sod and we both shaped the entire length of the front of the house. We sloped the dirt so the mulch will "sit pretty" as they instructed us to do. Then the digging started, and so did the blisters! Whew! What a ton of work that was. Kenny actually had to stop and a take a cat nap for 15 minutes and then he was right back in the game. I sat down numerous times and starting thinking that hiring a company to do this work might have been worth it. But then I thought about how much money we were saving by breaking our own backs, so that motivated me to get up off my ass and keep working! Four hours later we were done. And I promise to put the pictures up as soon as I can after the mulch is down. Now I have to rest my hands!!

Friday, June 22, 2007


I chose that as my title because that was what was occupying my hot little hand ALL day long. I think I may even have blisters now! But I did get quite a lot of work done. You know that black stuff that separates the grass from the landscaped area?? You can tell I've never done ANY landscaping before, so forgive my knowledge of the proper vocabulary. Anyway, I redug the little trenches for the black stuff that was already in the backyard, and since I am increasing the landscaping area, I had to add some (on sale at KMART!!) and so that required digging more trenches. That's back breaking labor I tell ya! But I did get some good sun while I was working. All that's left to do in the backyard now is plant the plants. The front yard? Tomorrow that will be the project.....getting it 100% ready to plant the plants. And I think Kenny will even be able to work with me tomorrow. So far, I've been solo on this huge project because he's super busy and now I'm on vacation. He wants to help and feels badly that he can't, and it does get irritating at times trying to make decisions without him, but I just do what I want and he likes anything, so it works out.
I also had to water the lawn today with our little cheap sprinkler. We have a fantastic sprinkler system in the yard, but apparently the lady that used to live here didn't blow out the sprinkler system in the fall and the water left in the pipes froze and something probably busted, so the thing isn't working. Story of my life. One of Kenny's good buddies is coming to fix it for us no matter what it needed, but not for two weeks. So the bottom line is the lawn needs water. Add it to the list of things to get done! It keeps growing......
Tonight I went to a wedding shower for a coworker, and it rocked!! It wasn't the typical assembly-line style shower where everyone watches the bride open the gifts. We played euchre (lot of the women were like me....sorely inexperienced at cards) and after every round we switched seats and when the bride sat across from you, you got to give her your gift. So she actually opened it with you right there, and it was awesome for her because she's very shy in front of a crowd like that, so it was her cup of tea. Our principal was there, and she OF COURSE had to embarass the poor bride by giving her dirty nighties....her face was SUPER RED. What principal does that????????? That's how she is....she's a hoot to work with. I'll have to get into other stories about her later. I will just say that she plays on my softball team, in a fun, not-too-competitive coed league, and she stands in right field when we have the field and talks smack to the batter on the other team.....not your typical principal!!
I think I just rambled on about nothing.....hope you're still awake!
One more thing....I was ready TheFlipFlpMamma blog tonight and she's having a tough time....take a second and click on her site and send her family some love!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Out of the Loop

Where in the world have I been? I am asking the same thing. I have been done with school for exactly one week, and no posts. Nothing. Have barely even touched the computer. And I have no good reasons, because I've had the time. This is what I've done....
On our (my co-pilot N) way home from our last day of school LAST Thursday, Kenny calls and says I need to meet him on the side of the road at a given intersection so he can give me a fuse that the fuse box needs because he blew one and he just had to give it to me right then, and he was on his way out so he couldn't do it. Whatever. So we pull over to the side of the road and I get the fuse and a kiss and a congratulations-you're-done-with-the-schoolyear, and then I get home and change the fuse. Exciting? So exciting in fact, that I fell asleep on the couch....for 12 hours. 12 HOURS!! I woke up the next morning and was confused....I kept thinking I was late for school, why am I on the couch, where's Kenny, and so on. I got up and realized that I had fallen asleep the day before and that it was now Friday. My first day of vacation. But I didn't feel right. This school year ended very nicely, with some sadness/emotions that I haven't ever experienced before. The end of the year has always been a huge debockle of craziness in my school, not to mention the exhaustion of working with kids every single day and seeing them on their way to the next grade. But this year, I was less focused on that because things went so smoothly all year and more focused on missing the kids. So it was overly emotionally exhausting.....does that even make sense? Anyway, that's why I slept so long and was in a funk for the first week of my vacation. I threw myself into this HUGE landscaping project we have going on well as going out of town for a few days. Finally, today, I feel like myself again, like I just arrived back on planet Earth this morning when I woke up. Whew. It was a long flight!
Here are a couple pictures of the work I have to get accomplished......
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And here's me accomplishing the work....very slowly....
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And here's what my feet look like all dirty, and yes, that's a bug on my foot.
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This is only a teeny section of the backyard. There is still mounds of work to be done there as well as a new patio and then the front yard.....I will be working until next summer to complete this!! The lady that previously owned this house obviously wasn't up to tending to the landscaping for the last few years, hence my long hours in the grueling sun. But, in some crazy way, I like the work. I love getting dirty and then when I take a shower and see all the grit and grime on the bottom of the tub it makes me feel like I accomplished so much. I will continuously post pictures so you can witness the progress...but it will be S L O W!!
It's good to be back on Earth today. Very good. I missed it.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Day at the Zoo

The zoo rocked! I love that place, and this particular zoo is ALWAYS the cleanest, friendliest, most enjoyable field trip of the year. It was 80 degrees and sunny, perfect zoo weather, and all the kids had a great time too. When you're a teacher, and you go on a field trip, there's usually very little relaxation time or enjoying time because you're constantly worrying about where the kids are, allergies, bandaids, lunches, time....the list goes on. But this trip was soooo different. I think it's mostly because I "retired" from being the person who plans all the field trips. I took this year off because I was the one who primarily had planned them for four years. Way too much. Anyway, I didn't plan a thing, and I got to take my mom who also had a blast. The three kiddos we had with us were fantastic! I couldn't have asked for a better field trip day. Here are a few pictures.....
Obviously we found Nemo....
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I don't think this fish was having a good day....
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I can't remember what this is but I loved it....
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My mom enjoying the carousel....
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I can't remember what the issue was that kept them from looking at the camera....
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Finally, we got the picture.
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Can you tell I loved the aquarium the best? Every year we take the kids on this field trip we run out of time for the aquarium, so this year, I insisted we get there. We missed the elephants but Kenny is already planning a trip for us soon:)

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Good Day:)

I love days like this. It's Sunday, we worked hard all week and yesterday, and today was the day to unwind. First of all, I slept in. That's worth a million bucks by itself. I made a YUMMY breakfast and even yummier coffee. Then my mom arrived and we chatted and she showed me how to use our new weedwacker. THAT was fun. I mowed the entire lawn and did the weedwacking....I actually love doing that kind of work, so it's less work and more fun for me. My mom and I did a little shopping and then bought food to make burgers (more yum!) and now we are just relaxing. Kenny is passed out on the couch, my mom is watching cable (she doesn't subscribe) and doing suduko. Can it get any better?? My mom is going on my field trip with me as a chaperone tomorrow, so she's here for the night. Our third overnight guest! I only have four days of school left....I can't believe it. Time has flown. I'm happy and sad. I want the time off, but I will really miss these kids. I will, however, enjoy my time with them on our last field trip of the year tomorrow:) And of course I'll enjoy my momma being there!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

No T13

For the first time in a while I didn't do a Thursday Thirteen. Guess I needed a week off. And what a week it has been. Every day at school has been packed with non-direct teaching activities. Usually, those kinds of things are saved for the last week of school, which unfortunetly, isn't until NEXT week. So I guess we're starting to wind down early this year. Because I have two grades in my class, things are very different this year as it comes to a close. I am seeing the second graders get a form of senioritis. Not kidding. They are starting to treat the first graders (the babies!!) different, almost mean. They are snapping at them, and tattling more too. I think it's because they know the end is near, they won't have me again as their teacher next year, they are moving on to the next multi-age classroom, and this is their way of distancing themselves from the first graders and even from me. Never in a million years would I have predicted this would happen. This is my first real year of teaching multi-age...I say real because my intership was multi-age, but that was only 4 months of teaching someone else's class. Anyway, it's interesting to see the changes. The second graders are going to be in the classroom next to me next year, so I will see them every day. That's making this transition a little easier on me. For most of the year, I have been prepping the second graders for this move to the big kids' multi-age class, and also prepping them on how the teacher is. He's older, stern, strict, and old school. Familiar with the phrase "he don't take no shit?" That's him. Way different from me. WAY DIFFERENT. So all year they have been nervous to talk to him, and I've encouraged them to be social with him so they would be more comfortable in his class this fall. They wanted nothing to do with him all year. Until yesterday. He came in to see them and to jokingly tease them, which is his style of teaching. My second graders ran up to him and hugged him and just couldn't get enough. I was floored! What a drastic change from the last time I mentioned his name! It kind of made me sad that they are ready to leave me, but also it made me feel good that they will be okay. I have to stop talking about the kids now....the tears are forming.

Every day this week I've come home and been busy until midnight. Monday it helping a friend with a project. Tuesday was our softball game (we won again!!) and then finishing up my grades which we due on Wednesday. Wednesday I mowed the lawn and watered everything, then potted a few plants and went though some more school paperwork. Tonight I came home and cleaned the entire house in about 2 hours. That's good for me...usually it takes half a day. I still have to water the potted plants and finish folding laundry. I'm taking Tasha's advice from a long time ago of doing one load of laundy a day and then on the weekends it's not overwhelming. Kenny has been so busy lately that I've been doing all the housework so he doesn't have to worry about it when he rolls in late every night. We are bad though. We have forgotten trash day two weeks in a row. Ooops. We are going to be swamped this weekend both days, so I thought it would be nice to get all the cleaning and stuff done today. He is so lucky to have me:)

I was going to save this for another time, but what the heck? Ever since September 11th happened, it seems that when I look at a clock, ANY clock, it says 9:11. I swear it happens on a daily basis. It can be the DVD player or cable box clock, my cell phone, in my car, the alarm clock....anywhere I look it seems to say that at that time of day, either morning or night. Every time it happens, I think to myself, "See, it's happening again! I'm not imaging it!" Kenny thinks it's because before Sept. 11 happened, no one really thought about those numbers like that. And now, because those numbers are so talked and thought about, I just notice it more when I see them. I still think glancing at a clock every single day unconsciously and seeing those numbers is wierd. Just wierd.

I should have titled this post as Dear Diary!

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Weekends go too fast. All the time. I feel like I just woke up from my Friday afternoon nap. But it's already Sunday night. I have 9 more days of school with the kids. This has been the best teaching year. E V A H!!! I HEART these kids so much. It creates an uncomfortable feeling of anxiety when I think about the year coming to an end because they are so much a part of my life. Not that in the past my students weren't special to me. They all were. It's just this group is like family. I actually cried a little in the car yesterday when I thought about them not being mine next year. They will be someone else's. Ewwww. Don't like that thought at all. I'm just not ready to give them up yet. The end of the year is always a ball of emotions. Glad for the much needed vacation. But not looking forward to saying goodbye. And this year feels like it will be so much harder. I've only cried in front of my class once, last year, when one of my students (who ADORED me, which makes it that much harder) had to move away, and it was time for her to leave on her last day. She jumped into my lap and started crying that she didn't want to leave, and her dad happened to walk in the room right at that second, and she held on to the back of my neck and sobbed. The WHOLE class was watching this. I let her cry for a minute, and then her dad signaled for me to let her go. I tried. I swear I did. But she wouldn't budge. Then I couldn't hold back the tears either anymore. Finally her dad pried her away and took her to his car. He came back and asked if she could call me on the phone. So we kept in touch for a little while on the phone, and it made us both feel better. That's how I feel about not just one student that I have right now, but ALL of them. It's not going to be easy. I just have to prepare myself for it. I know I'll be fine. I'll see these kids every day in the hallway next year. I'm just going to enjoy them for the last 9 days. As I've done for the last 172 school days. Monday's only 2 hours away. Here goes nothin.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

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This Week's Theme:
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All year my students have asked to draw on the board.....they ask just about every day, and I usually say no because of the mess with the chalk they will make. This week, I finally caved in and said yes. They were beside themselves with happiness! And what a mess.....