Sunday, September 30, 2007

Sunny Sunday

Yesterday was one of those days you want to bottle and take with you forever. First of all, it was Saturday. No waking up to that 4am alarm clock. The dog did wake me up around 7am to go out, but I didn't mind. Kenny and I got up and he suggested we go to a craft show. A CRAFT SHOW!! So we went. Fun fun fun. Then we ran a couple of errands while we were puppiless (she was at her grandparents). I didn't care where we went....we were together, in the truck, driving around in the beautiful sunny fall weather, my poison ivy was (is) finally on the mend, and I was just HAPPY. And content, and it just felt good. A coworker/friend had a party last night, so while Kenny stayed back, I went and had some drinks and did what you always do when you hang out with coworkers.....bitch about work. But sometimes, it's just needed. I came home and we were going to watch a couple movies and relax together, but Kenny was already asleep, which is odd for him because he's a night owl, and I'm usually the one who falls asleep! Today we will be outside doing fall stuff all day, and I can't wait. Actually, I am waiting, for him to wake up! The puppy and I are ready to go. I called the puppy training place and am getting my money back. Last week was the first week of the training and it was a LECTURE. And the whole time BB was going crazy, and I was thinking to myself that this would be a perfect opportunity for the trainer to give me (the class) a couple hints on how to calm the pup down....I was pissed when I left the class last week but I just chalked it up to being miserable with poison ivy. Now that I'm not in an itching frame of mind, I see that it was a waste of time. So I quit puppy training!! We are doing really well with her on our own thanks to friends/family that give us tips (thanks Lori) and because I read all I can on the internet and also because she's a good puppy. And in a few months if we feel like she (or we) need training, we'll call one that comes to the house and is one-on-one. It was ridiculus last week. I was really disappointed, so that's that. But the puppy is doing so well! She's more of a junior piggy now. She's growing SOOOO fast. She is barking most of the time to go outside (thank god for that!!) and has the "COME" and "SIT" commands down pat so far. Okay, I think I hear the sleeping bear waking....gotta go!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Little H

I have to talk about something positive today because the last week or so has been so miserable. So I will introduce you to one of my students, a first grader, we'll call her Little H. First things first, she's adorable. Simply adorable. And teeny, and also, I'm thinking she should have blond hair. The first three weeks in class, she was NEVER on task, constantly out of her seat, and I was really not understanding how she made the cut to be in my class, which is compiled of advanced students who get onto my roster through a tough screening. Anyway, she made it into my room because she is smart as a whip, I just hadn't seen it yet. On Monday morning, she came in, hyper and grinning, as usual, and sat down and read the DO NOW that I always have on the board. She started her work without fussing. I'll say that again....SHE STARTED HER WORK WITHOUT FUSSING. Did you get that? And she finished her work, on time, all day long. Which had never happened. I could NOT get her to write 3 complete sentences in the three previous weeks. I knew she was capable, VERY capable in fact, she just was too into playing and looking around and yak yak yaking all the time. And then out of the blue, Monday was her best day ever. And I told her mom that after school, and Little H presented her mother with a "good note" that I wrote for her. She was beaming from ear to ear when she left. I thought that it was a miracle, but how much could I wish for in one week? Believe it or not, she was the same way Tuesday AND today. And today was her "leader" day which means she gets to do the calendar activities, lead the line wherever we go all day, and read a special story to the class. She was so excited about it being her day today. I was so proud of her.....kind of like she was my own kiddo.

As a teacher, there are many kids who teach me things. I learn the true meaning of patience, empathy, understanding, committment, longevity, the list is endless. But it isn't often that a child touches my heart like Little H has done, in only four weeks of school. I can't wait to see her little face greet me in the morning. Literally, over the weekend, this child transformed into a sweet, giving, wanting-to-please student, and this really made me think about being judging others, especially kids. My first reaction to this student was OH MY GOSH SHE IS GOING TO GIVE ME GRAY HAIR. It's amazing how much a child that is not my own flesh and blood can leave these kinds of footprints on my heart. Even if she was still squirmy and chatting and acting out like she was in the beginning, I would still love her just as much as I do now, because one look at her dimples and braids and you are hooked. I constantly have to remind myself that my students want to be loved and accepted before anything else, and if I don't give them that, then I'm not giving 110% to them, which is what they deserve.

Update on the poison ivy....thanks to all of you who are sympathyzing......I found a soapy scrub that has these microscrubbers in it that actually scratch my poor skin as I wash the ivy on my you know how good that feels? OMG it's like I'm in heaven for about 15 seconds. My friend Julie recommended this stuff to me, and it is really helping the itching urges. I'm just hoping to be "normal" again soon. I still have lots of drying up to do, but at least I am finding some more relief on the way. I just keep thinking how much this puppy is KENNY'S puppy and how unfair it is that I am the one suffering here!!! It just figures, doesn't it??
I will leave you with a picture of the puppy, because I have to remember how cute she is so I won't go crazy over the ivy situation....

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Just when I thought....

...things were getting better....

My poison ivy gets worse. Or should I say, it is spreading more now. And I'm sure it's because I'm not taking the oral steroids, but I simply refuse because of the way it makes me feel (I'm still using the topical steroids and calymine lotion). So the dog clawed open one fluid filled pocket of poison ivy on Saturday, and because I was outside, essentially on a farm, I couldn't be as clean and anti-infectious as I would have liked. So it spread a little. IT KEEPS GOING. I am in hell right now. It's 90 f-ing degrees outside, and humid, and in my classroom, not air conditioned mind you and NO WINDOWS OPEN because of location, my poison ivy itched today like a mofo. Excuse the language. I'm so MAD! It makes me feel better.

Tonight after dinner, Kenny takes the dog out to play and have a good old time, and I'm talking on the phone in the house. I see Kenny and the pup socializing with the neighbor out back. No biggie, right?? Wrong. Not two seconds later Kenny comes in the house with the dog, and tells me he didn't get all the poison ivy out of the back yard...there's still more, and the dog just rolled in it. AND NOW THE DOG IS LAYING ON MY FEET!!! Do you know what this is doing to me???? Any idea??? I start screaming because of the agony of not being able to itch the most itchy thing in the world (that I know of) and now there's possibly more infestation to come! I simply cannot take it anymore. I demanded that he throw the pup in the tub and scrub the hell out of her NOW. And that's what he's doing. And then he's going to bleach the hell out of the tub. Because, apparently, if I even look in the direction of poison ivy, it attaches to me.

Now you will have to excuse me, as I need to get my medical papers in order so I can be committed to the local loony ward. I just can't take the itching and burning any more.

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Our puppy had an interesting day yesterday. We were at a fleamarket all day, outside. We kept thinking it would be awesome to take the pup and spend a whole day with her and ourselves outside, right? Sure did. It really was fun, and warm, but it was so crazy to have a dog the whole time with us. I kept seeing moms and dads with their kids IN STROLLERS and I was thinking, can I get one of those....and a diaper too?? I was CONSTANTLY worrying about her peeing or pooping on someone, or worse yet, something I would have to end up buying because my dog couldn't hold her bladder. Ugh. But, I guess I should have had faith in her because she was extremely well behaved and didn't pee or poop anywhere she wasn't supposed to. I did let her poop in the field next to the flea market and I didn't use a baggie....come on! It was a field in the country. I'm sure there's much worse things in that field than puppy doo-doo. Here's how her day went.....
Stealing someone's popcorn-you can tell by the way her back in hunched she is being naughty!

Being a ham while laying in the shade.....

Waking up from one of her many naps in the I said, we were there ALL day!

And finally passed out in the backseat of the truck on the way home. I know it looks like she's sitting up looking in her bowl, but I promise, she was passed out. And when we got home, she slept all night, no waking up to be playful at inappropriate times or whining! We really wore her out!

Today I took her to the first of eight puppy training sessions. I was going into this thinking that my pup was so smart and well behaved. Who's dog spent the whole time barking and trying to get away? Mine. And then she promptly fell asleep. Ugh. And while this was going on, Kenny was blowing up my cell phone, which I had left in the car, trying to figure out where the training was because I told him one place and it was the wrong location. So he didn't even make the training today. Nice to start off on the right foot, eh? Oh well. I appologized over and over again about my puppy being wild. I swear the other dog owners were giving me dirty looks. I have 3 homework assignments to teach the pup before next Sunday. THREE. I hope we can get one down!! Especially when I was teaching Kenny how to do them and he was laughing like it was silly. I have doubts about these classes already!! Ah!

I am just so frustrated. Not just with the puppy, but also the weekend. It's already Sunday, I haven't done ANYTHING yet, no laundry, groceries, cleaning. NOTHING. I am so NOT motivated. I don't know what my problem is. Kenny is sleeping on the couch, the dog is sleeping, perfect time to get some things done. Just no motivation. What do I really want to do? Something crafty. But that means cleaning to get to my craft table.

See ya later.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Friday from Hell

Yesterday was bad. Very bad!!
On Wednesday I went to the urgent care for the poison ivy. I couldn't take it any longer, the itching was too much. They gave me a topical steroid and oral steroid. I used the cream, not the pills because in the past, when I've used oral steroids, it makes me hot, sweaty, mean, all of which is normal for taking that medication, I just didn't want to deal with it. So the cream was going to be all I needed. Yeah right! So Thursday I didn't go to work because even thought my poison ivy wasn't open or oozy, I didn't want to deal with the kids seeing it and all that drama, so I called in. And at home, it bother me a little, the itching and hotness, but I kept thinking that the steroids would take effect soon and I would be fine. I woke up Friday morning and got ready for work (we had professional development, so no kids) and realized the shit had spread. It was now not only on my wrist, but my other arm in a couple spots, my ankle, behind my ear (I wear headbands often and somehow I think that didn't help) and the spots on my neck had grown. Oh yeah, on my stomach, right above the underwear line, where I had scratched a mosquito bite. Lovely, eh? So I was VERY concerned and uncomfortable. So I lathered up in the steroids cream again and went to work. As soon as I got there and get into some meetings, I was in hell. The itching was so incredibly bad that I couldn't concentrate and of course I wasn't scratching it, but what could I do? I called my doctor friend and started crying because I couldn't take it anymore...the itching was making me crazy and batty and I couldn't think straight. She said to go the ER and get the shot, whatever that it, and it would be better VERY soon. The shot is like the oral steroids, only it works almost immediatly. I called my own doc, couldn't get in, called the urgent care, they didn't give those shots (that's bullshit by the way) and I was trying to think of any way to avoid going and waiting in an ER. There were no other options. I somehow made it though the day and when N and I left work, she drove me straight the ER. 3hours later I had the shot and was woozy on benedryl. HAPPILY woozy, content to not be in itchy hell anymore. I won't bore you with the ER details except to tell you that I normally have low BP, and when I got there it was 145/90.....which isn't good compared to what mine usually is. I was so jittery and shaky and bouncy from the itchiness that I couldn't sit still and that's why my BP was bad. They took it again before I left to make sure it had come down, which it had. Thank goodness! I got home and was out like a light. And this morning (of course it's Saturday morning and I was up at430am because that's when I'm usually up anyway and now the puppy is programmed to get up at that time) I feel a little woozy from the benedryl, however, the poison ivy is noticeably better (a lot!!!) and I'm not itchy at all. I do have oral steroids I have to take for about 5 days, but at this point, I'll deal with the side effects, anything to not feel that awful itchiness again. ANYTHING is better than that!! Just for the record....I never scratched it-talk about will power! And Kenny got rid of all the poison ivy in the backyard for now, I think we'll have to treat the area with chemicals or something later on, but for now, me or the puppy can't get into it again. Fun stuff, eh?? Hopefully by the time Monday rolls around I'll still be nice and calm and relaxed and the poison ivy will be almost gone!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Wednesday Ramblings

What a week so far. And thank goodness it's half over!! The heat is back in Michigan. Last week was such a nice, relaxing, cooler weather week, and the weekend was beautiful, and the last couple of days have been warmer. Today, it was hot. And I wasn't dressed for the hotness in my classroom. In fact, I was dressed too warmly, and I couldn't remove the top layer because I needed the sleeves to cover the POISON IVY on my arm. Can you guess where I got that from?? My backyard. And why was I in the bushes back there? It has to do with the cutest puppy ever and I think you know who that is!! She is so loveable and cute, but training her is no fun task. But we sure are enjoying the benefits. She's doing so much better now than last week. She LOVES her crate, it's her safe place she enjoys being, and she whines to go out to do her business almost all the time. I love playing with her in the evenings when she thinks she is going to sleep....I keep her up as late as I can so that she will sleep later in the morning. I swear, every morning, she wakes up 15 minutes before my alarm goes off. Like she just knows I need that extra amount of sleep but just can't let me have it!!
The morning time is our special time together. She hangs out with me while I get ready for work, I feed her, take her out, and then we wait outside for my coworker/best friend to get here to ride to work together. N gets her dose of doggy love every morning and she loves it, and so does the pup.
Here she is in all her glory, chasing her favorite toy. Mind you she has all the chew toys and tennis balls a puppy could want, but this is what she LOVES and hoards in her house. ENJOY!!

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Kenny and I are quickly learning how to be dog people. We even signed up for puppy training. I know lots of people will be making fun of us for that, but seriously, we need it. Maybe even more than BB does. We need to know all the basics and more, so I am looking forward to it!! Plus it's an excuse for Kenny and I to do something together other than stuff that's work related. I think we'll enjoy it. I hope they let me take pictures!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Photo Hunt

This Week's Theme:


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Here's my new vacuum. We needed a new one so badly, and I've been shopping them around, and then a couple weeks ago, Kenny just appeared in the doorway with this new Hoover!! I love it! It's a hunk of awesome plastic! And the best part is, he even vacuums now! I think the first week we had it, he vacuumed every day. I was in heaven!

(As you can see in the pictures, we still haven't finished our kitchen floor-I'm so lovin' the 1960s gold style look, that I can't decide on what kind of floor to buy......kidding.....but in all honesty, we really can't make up our minds on what to put down there, so until we do, it's all 1960s psycholdelic, every day, and I think it's even making the dog go crazy!)

Friday, September 14, 2007


I am soooooooooo glad it's Friday! It's been an interesting week. This was the second week of school, so I'm still adjusting and so are my students, and adding a new puppy to the mix? Well, let's just say that I've got more sleep other weeks. We're crate training BB so if we are both gone, she will be content in there. Talk about frustrating! The first time was absolutley awful. I felt so bad leaving her when she was crying and barking (it's a wimpy bark because she's so little still). I actually had a little anxiety episode on Monday when I left for work because I could hear her crying and I HAD to leave. I worried all day long about her, even though Kenny was in and out all day taking care of her. I felt like I was a new mommy leaving her baby at a daycare....but she is surviving and so are we!! Here are some oh-so-cute pictures of her! Look at that tail!
And because I'm feeling guilty that the hamster is being neglected, I included pics of his cute face too. He is a little less than thrilled about BB.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

6 Year Anniversary

We Will Never Forget

Sunday, September 09, 2007


Kenny got his wish....we got a puppy!! Here she is in all her puppy glory.....

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Her name is BB and she's a sweety. Here she is on her make-shift bed until we get the real one....

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We played with her outside the night we brought her home...
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And this is BB pouting because I was on the computer, NOT giving her attention.
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She's already high maintenance. I keep telling Kenny that she's HIS dog....something tells me it will not be that way already. The good thing is that she can work with Kenny because he's always on the go and outside on the job. I'm hoping that works out! We also have a nice, fenced in backyard for her to play and run in and there are dogs behind us that she's already made buddies with.
Couldn't you just eat that face up?? She's so cute! I hope I still think that after she spends her first night NOT in my bed tonight. My fingers are crossed!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Almost TGIF

I can't believe how fast this week has gone! It's already day 4 tomorrow. And the best's dress down day already. That just makes everything better! Our new principal doesn't care what we wear to work, let alone dress down days every other Friday. I repeat, SHE DOESN'T CARE ABOUT OUR DRESS CODE! This is my 6th year teaching (all at the same school), and every year prior to this one, the dress code has been business dressy. Now, we get away with dress pants and dressy shirts, sweaters, what have you, most of us only wear suits and super dressy stuff for conferences. But in general, it has been business dressy. Ugh. Working with children should require nothing more than casual....khakis please!! Jeans please!! This year, it looks like we are not as formal...thank God! So you can just imagine my excitement when I heard that we can wear jeans tomorrow!! No ironing required...woohooooooo!

On another note, there were some interesting activities going on here in my house last night. When we bought this house, we were well aware that we were going to be purchasing a hot water heater soon, as the one here wouldn't last much longer. Seeing as though Kenny and I are both COMPLETELY CLUELESS as to how to fix ANYTHING in a house, we see that as a major problem, where as others may think, no biggie. I wish that were the case with us. We bought the new tank last weekend and his father (a retired pipe fitter) said he would install it for us. Great right? Uh uh. I came home yesterday to Kenny and his dad both in the basement, inches from a blowout. Thank goodness it didn't come to that, but the problem that was left in our hands was that we couldn't get the new tank lit. His dad scurried off without turning it ON. We read and reread and reread the directions on the side of the tank, but it just wasn't making sense. Kenny got so irritated with it that he had to walk away from it for an hour. In that hour I thought about cleaning up the mess (water was EVERYWHERE, not because it leaked because it never did until it was uninstalled) but then realized it would (the old one) probably leak again when we drag it up the stairs to get rid of it. So why bother cleaning now when I'll have to do it again when we get rid of it? You tell me. So I can't really get to my washer and dryer right now until things are shifted. What a pain. Anyway, Kenny came back downstairs and the thing was lit, and for the first time since we moved in, my shower was HOT HOT HOT until I turned the water off. Yipee! Kenny then (he must have been feeling pretty confident) thought about taking the garbage disposal out and putting in the new one, which I IMMEDIATLY poo-pooed (in a tasteful way) because one small fiasco was enough for one day in this house. I need a week to recover from the hot water tank incident and then cleanup that it will require and then we'll think about the garbage disposal.

Kenny did surprise me today...I came home and the lawn was all mowed and the garbage was already on the curb. In this house, I do most of that, if you didn't already guess that. So I was absolutely delighted when I came home to that. Oh yeah, one more thing....we have been shopping for a new vacuum because the one we have is garbage, and Kenny came home on Sunday with a brand new one....and he vacuumed....EVERY SINGLE DAY since Sunday. I can't even handle it. We only have one room with carpet in our house, everything else is hard wood, but still, I gotta give credit where it's due! My carpet is super clean, and I didn't even have to vacuum it! A girl could get used to this.

I'm off to do something mindless. It'll probably involve the TV and the couch. I still can't believe how the summer is over and I'm just about through my first week of school. Oh well. TGIF!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Day One In Videos

I made it through the first day, and then some! It was a success! The day was wonderful, and the kids are adorable. I took short videos throughout the day so you can see hear how things went. Here's the first one, just shortly before school started...I hadn't even turned on all the lights in the room yet because I was in denial that the first day was really here:

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And here's what I had to say at lunchtime:

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And then me after school....very hot after 8 hours with no air conditioning and humidity to make you cry:

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So that's my day in short video clips. I'll post pictures tomorrow. I'm so pooped out, but VERY happy to be be in my cool, relaxing, QUIET house. One day down, 179 to go. Just kidding...I know this year will be great! And to my teacher friends, Amy and Melissa, who read but NEVER comment, just comment already! I want to know how your first days went!!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Last Day of Vacation

Well, today is the last day of my summer vacation! Happy Labor Day! The summer was good, it went fast, and I'm still looking forward to many more weekends at the lake house and doing outdoorsy things, especially when the weather starts to get cooler. That is truly my favorite time of year. I have spent the majority of the day in the basement with laundry. I had to find, clean, iron, and hang as many dress clothes as possible. I have more than I thought! What a nice surprise. Yesterday I went to Target and got a couple new shirts that are fall colored but short sleeve and cool enough to wear now. There's just nothing like starting the first day with some new clothes.

Last night Kenny and I went on a date. A much needed, just us, alone time, date. It was fantastic. We had dinner at my favorite Bahama style restaraunt. And then we went to the movies, and even though the movie was terrible (The Invasion), we still had an awesome time! Ever since last winter, we just haven't had much time to ourselves, for fun.

Except for a quick run to the grocery store (and it will be very quick because I HATE grocery shopping) and a few odds and ends to print on the computer, I just may be ready for the first day of school! Good friend and coworker N is coming back to work at our school after all. There was much drama and crap involved, but she is coming back to teach!! Which means I have my co-pilot back!! Yay!! After riding together a whole year, it's not the same without her. And I found that out last week during all our back-to-school meetings, before she was officially coming back to work. So imagine my excitement that she's coming back now!!

I am going to try to take some pics and videos tomorrow of the first can be hectic, so no promises, but I will do my best!!

Enjoy the holiday!