Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Getting Ready

Tomorrow is the big day! 3/4 of our family is going back to school! Perhaps the most exciting event is Riley's beginning of Jr. High School-7th grade! I think he's pretty excited about tomorrow. I know I am pretty excited for him! I think he'll enjoy the variety of students, from 5 other elementary schools. New friends, old friends, more independence. Quinn will be a big 3rd grader. He has a male teacher, the same teacher Riley had for 3rd grade. He is psyched! I wonder if he will want spikey hair tomorrow? I will begin my 15th year of teaching, and my 9th year in 2nd grade. Kevin just gets to drop off one kid, and go to work, but I am sure he's super excited too.

This is what I plan on wearing tomorrow, complete with accessories. Of course it's supposed to be super hot tomorrow-in the 90's. I'm not excited about that. Did you notice I use the word "super" a lot? Only in writing though. Verbally, I say the word "interesting" a lot. Anyway, that was super random...interesting?

My classroom is ready. My lesson plans for the rest of this week are complete. My outfit is picked out. The boys' outfits are picked out. School supplies are packed and organized. Now I am off to make some lunches. Those boys will probably like to eat tomorrow.

Oh by the way, remember that "superstar" kid that I told you about yesterday? He was crossed off of my class list today. Hmmmm. I made him a name tag anyway, and I'll just wait and see. Anything can happen with our class lists until Sept. 13. After that, the classes will be set in stone.

PS: There are 280 days until we see U2.

Monday, August 30, 2010

All Good Things Must End

Well, my summer is officially over. Sniff. I went back to work today. We had meetings all day, in really hard chairs. It seemed like the slowest day in the world. We had to be there at 8:00 am. When it felt like I had been there forever, I checked the time, and it was only 8:48! The day just crawled along. It was painful. After the meetings, I spent some time finishing up my classroom.
I am ready for students, all 28 of them. I got a surprise today, when I had my actual class list in my hands: I got a sibling of an adorable little girl that I had last school year. I got her equally adorable little sister. I was so excited about it, and shocked I didn't notice when I was looking at the list in the dark-remember? I went to school over the weekend with a flashlight, to look at my class list. There are 3 girls total in this family-this new one is the middle one, so I can look forward to hopefully getting the last one too (in two years, she's just starting Kindergarten). It's a very nice, supportive family. Anyway, that made my day. What didn't make my day is learning that I got the pain in the butt kid (also happens to be a sibling of a past student, and if I remember correctly, his brother was a pain in the butt as well). I will simply have to whip the little booger into shape. I don't recall the family being all that supportive, so I may have my work cut out for me. Unsupportive parents. Yuck! I am up to the task, and after last school year, I am up to the challenge.

At least I have my ducks all in a row. I always do. Always.

Back to work tomorrow, it's a staff meeting and a work day. The students come on Wednesday. My boys start Wednesday as well (same district). Quinn is super excited. He got a male teacher. Riley might be a little nervous, but I think he's looking forward to 7th grade. Stay tuned...good things to come!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Great America-The "Fun" and Only

We went to Great America today. For those of you that are not local, it's an amusement park. They boast lots of thrill rides, and a huge waterpark inside the park, that's free with entry. It was pretty much perfect weather. 70's the whole day, and not windy like yesterday.
Mount Rushmore, yo!
Quinn loves these swings! This is the kiddie version, which he was tall enough to ride.
Kevin and Quinn waited in line to ride Psycho Mouse. The similar one at Disney's California Adventure is one of Quinn's favorite rides.
On the ride! Yay for Psycho Mouse!
Waterslides galore at the back of the park!
Quinn aboard the log ride.
After the ride-they hardly got wet.
Riley loved this one, Flying Eagles.
Kevin rode this water ride-that's his boat. See that bridge? That's the "splash zone." You can actually get wetter there than on the ride!

Kevin, at the end of his ride. Hardly wet.

Although Great America has NOTHING on Disneyland, we did have a good time. We had a little issue with Quinn not being able to ride with his brother on those car things you can drive. I had to ride with him, and he couldn't even DRIVE either-I had to. Disney lets the kids drive, even if they are itty bitty. I think they are smart enough to know that us parents can handle the pedal, and the kids just have to steer. It's really not that hard. It's on a track. I'm sure the ride operator didn't like hearing me say that Disneyland doesn't do it that way. I'm sure they hear it ALL THE TIME. Great America is also not very skilled at getting people off/on rides in a timely manner. Also, they just are not as friendly.

If you want to see the rest of our pictures, CLICK HERE.

Back to work for me tomorrow. Boo! I'm not ready to face 30 kids.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Scout BBQ

Sorry for not posting yesterday. The day wasn't all that exciting. I spent the entire day at school, getting my classroom together, feeling annoyed that the new desks I got are too tall, and now I have to track down a custodian to lower them. I'm also missing two of my regular desks, which annoys me to no end-they've replaced them with smaller (but taller) desks. In addition, I don't have any idea who is in my class, and I have been cleaning up sunflower seed shells from the "cleaning" crew. Gross. It amazes me that they could clean and spit their shells at the same time! Really gross. It's super dusty in my room too-had to double up the allergy meds just so that I could dust it. In addition, I also had to move all of my furniture around since the furniture/cleaning crew couldn't follow a map. Needless to say, this school year is not starting off on a good foot for me-there are other issues as well. I did go up to school last night, in the dark, with a flashlight, so that I could get a look at my class. I don't know a single name. That could be good, or that could be bad. It's a wait and see kind of thing. I seriously need to improve my attitude. The cards are stacked against me though. Anyway...so I cleaned yesterday and the boys were home, working on their Lego structures, and playing soccer in the backyard. Anyway, that was yesterday, on to today...
We had a Cub Scout end of summer BBQ today, at the local park. There was soccer playing...
Posing for pictures...

Bike riding...Yes, we realize Riley is too big for his bike. Guess what Santa will bring him this year...
More bike riding from the "rebel"-what kind of face is that? He's just about too big for his bike too, but he's too small for Riley's. A little longer, and he'll be able to ride it comfortably-no bike from Santa for him. The joys of being the second brother.
The boys played a couple of games. This one was like Hot Potato. They had to pass the ice, and when the music stopped, the one holding it was out. Look at the pure joy on Quinn's face.
Then of course there was this game...donuts hanging from string. I have no idea what you would call this game.

The object was to eat your donut off the string, without using your hands. The boys all had powdered sugar all over their faces, but they love this game. Oh, and Kevin would want you to know that when the adults got their turn, he came out the winner. I am very proud. I didn't think they'd be able to play this game, since it was so freakin' windy today.

What is it about a day at the park? We came home, and I couldn't move off of the couch. I napped for a little while, in between answering questions, and letting the dog in/out.

We are headed to Great America tomorrow-a last summer trip.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Last Day of Summer Vacation

It was my last day of summer vacation. Well, actually tomorrow is technically my last day, but I am going to school, to finish setting up my classroom. With a little luck, perhaps I'll even know who will be in my class this year. There's a pretty good chance I'll know as they are posting the classes tomorrow. It really bugs me that we can't get the list sooner. It would be great to send "Welcome to Class" postcards to the new students. Anyway, so today was my last day of fun. We stayed home all day-well not Kevin, he went to work. I am almost finished cleaning my side of our office. A few things to put away, and I need to make a trip to Michael's tomorrow for another bead storage container. I have an addiction.
Riley and I munched on these today. They are so yummy, and I don't even like tomatoes! Do these really count as real tomatoes though? They are from a teacher friend's garden. I also have a big fat "real" tomato, an onion, and a burpless cucumber. These are super yummy though.
While I cleaned, the boys were busy creating a Lego world in both rooms, but mostly Quinn's. It kept them busy all day, and there was not one ounce of arguing. Awesome! I love Lego-on so many levels.
The boys made a candy machine. Isn't it cute? A little candy vending machine.
This one is the soda vending machine they made. ADORABLE! They followed directions they found on the internet. Clever boys.
Quinn wanted you all to see this guy. He's wearing a jetpack, oh and he has a knife.

I baked cookies this evening. These are Pillsbury Fun-Fetti cookies, from the Fun-Fetti cake mix. The recipe is on the side of the box. Next to Snickerdoodles, these are my favorite cookies to make. I frosted them with Strawberry Mist frosting, and added blue sprinkles. They boys can munch on those (and the tomatoes) tomorrow.

It's hard to believe another summer has come and gone. My boys start school on Wednesday. We find out who Quinn's teacher is, tomorrow. He's super excited.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Good News/Bad News

The good news is...
I got a much needed pedicure today. It's just so relaxing. I love it. I have pretty toes for school next week.

The bad news is...

I found this spider in a plastic container, at school. I was pulling out some magazines, and saw this thing. I screamed and ran around in a fit. The teacher next door came over and looked at it. We thought it was dead, it being so still and all. When I finally calmed down and went to finish removing the magazines, the thing MOVED, quickly! I screamed all over again. My neighbor came to my rescue, by taking the container outside and dumping all of the contents, including the spider, onto the ground. It crawled away. Gross. I HATE spiders. They freak me out.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

It's Official!

Well, it's official!

Riley is a 7th grader! He has the ID to prove it! He had orientation this morning, from 8-12. I dropped him off, and he looked so small to me. I got a little misty, but Starbucks helped, and a visit with one of my favorite parents from my sweet class last school year, also helped to perk me up. I picked him up right around 12 and we went to lunch. After lunch we headed back to the school for MAZE DAY. That was crazy. We didn't take long enough to eat, so we had to stand in some big lines. The lines to get a card for pictures, and then take the pictures, were confusing, and looooooong. The schedule line was super long too. It took us about an hour to get through all 9 stations. I paid for all kinds of things. In the end though, he's all set! He has his schedule-two honors classes (pre algebra and science), his first choice elective (arts and crafts-yeah, he's my kid), World History (doesn't that sound fun?), English, and PE last period, which works out well. All of his classes are pretty close together, so he should NEVER be late. NEVER. This, of course, would never occur to Riley as he is a devout rule follower. We found all of his classes, the nearest water fountains and bathrooms. He's pretty excited, and I never thought I would say this, but I am too! I was super nervous about this Jr. High, but it's going to be fine. He met some nice kids today-and a super cute GIRL. He even met some kids from my school (my school also feeds into this Jr. High), including one of my former students. Excitement is all around!

Friday we find out who will be Quinn's teacher. Talk about someone who is excited for school to start-oh man! That boy can't wait. "How many days mom?" "How many days mom?" "How many days mom?"

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Random Sunday

I had no plans to leave the house today. I wanted to just hang around, work on cleaning my side of our office, read a little, facebook, play Words With Friends, etc. So I settled in to stay home, but around dinner time, Kevin asked if I wanted to go to a new burger place for dinner. This place, called Five Guys, opened here, and people have been comparing it to In and Out Burger. NOTHING compares to In and Out, but I was willing to give it a try. It was SUPER freaking crowded over there, so we ate at the very slow, non-crowded pizza place next door, instead. The comparison will just have to wait. Oh man, now I'm hungry for In and Out!
I took this picture yesterday, in the Ahwahnee Hotel. It's with my iPhone, the Hipstamatic app. I just love that app.
This is what Owen did today. He loves this spot. He can sleep the day away here, on the quilts, and mostly the dog never notices.
I worked on this today. I am going through all of my magazines, ripping out the things I like, and recycling the rest. Actually, I am going to take them to school for projects. I am going to put all of the loose articles/ideas into an idea binder, by subject and holiday. Ambitious? Some of the magazines I am keeping intact though, because I love them.
Quinn did this today. He practiced kicking his soccer ball at the orange cone his coach let him borrow. Doesn't he look fast in this picture? Kevin took both boys to the park today, so Quinn could practice. He also got Riley a hair cut.

This is what Riley did today. He ate a giant piece of pizza, and enjoyed every minute of it. We are firm believers in pizza the size of your head around here.

My MIL sent me THIS LINK the other day. This happened at the Mountain Winery on Thursday night. We were last there on Tuesday night. I am glad we weren't there on Thursday, when some man decided to commit suicide by jumping from the roof, to the stage, while the band played. Horrible. Read the article. So sad, and yet, so selfish. I just can't stop thinking about what this guy's decision did to the minds of the concert goers, and the band, who only wanted an entertaining night out. I'm sorry he died and everything, it's tragic. I'm sorry he had a troubled life, but come on! This was not the answer-for anyone.

Saturday, August 21, 2010


The four of us headed out this morning, for Yosemite. It's about 3 1/2 hours from here. We dropped Maya off at doggie daycare first. She wasn't sure she wanted to stay, but she did. It was a crowded day inside the park. We think we'll go back in the fall, when everyone else has gone back home.
I took this picture with my iPhone, with the Hipstamatic app. I feel like Ansel Adams!
We stopped at a lookout of Half Dome, and this bronze model of Half Dome was there. It was pretty cool to see all of the different looks it has, from all different sides. There is a trail that goes all the way to the top.
The boys, with Half Dome in the background. It was kind of overcast, but quite warm-hot actually.
Some tall trees.
This was taken at a scenic overlook called Tunnel View. It was jam-packed with people. I am not even sure how we didn't get any strangers in our pictures-must have been my elbows keeping them at bay. JK. We just had to take fast pictures.
Kevin at the Tunnel View.

That's Bridal Veil Falls, from Tunnel View. I zoomed in on it. Gotta love 12x zoom. I do! Plus, you can go right over people's heads!

It was a very nice day. We spent a lot of time in the car, but we really could not beat the scenery. We want to go for a night or two in the fall, so that we can hike some of the trails.

Maya had a great time at doggie daycare-she got a very good report card. Boy was she happy to see us! She's completely passed out on Kevin's lap right now.

If you want to see the rest of our pictures, CLICK HERE.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Finishing Up Summer

Sadly, our summer is coming to an end. It's such a bummer. I will be fine once the year gets going, but right now, I am dreading it. This week has been all about appointments, and school clothes/supplies shopping. The boys are all set. A few new shirts and some shorts. They both have shoes already that are fine, and I refuse to buy pants right now. It really annoys me that everything in the stores is long sleeves and pants. It's still warm enough to wear shorts until November.
I got some Stella & Dot jewelry for my back to school. I LOVE the long coiled bracelet.

I also got back to school shoes! No, I didn't need new shoes either, but MY feet aren't still growing.

Today was the end of swim classes for the boys. They LOVED them. Both are SWIMMERS now! I was very pleased with this swim club. They were awesome at teaching arm strokes. After swim, we headed out to see the optometrist. Riley failed his vision test at the doctor's office. He is nearsighted (like me), and so he's getting glasses. We picked out some very stylish black frames. He looks really good in them. He's excited to wear them too. Now all four of us wear glasses. We pick them up September 2, so stay tuned for pictures.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Cyndi Lauper Flop

Kevin and I headed back to the Mountain Winery to see Cyndi Lauper, last night.

It's such a beautiful view.

The concert was horrible. Just horrible. I really, really like Cyndi Lauper, even when she was a nutcase on the Apprentice, but this show sucked. She has a new album, a blues album. I get that. I knew she would play stuff from it. I didn't count on 90 minutes of blues, and really long stories and song intros. When people in the front began screaming out for Girls Just Want To Have Fun, she got really cranky. She said it was HER time to have fun. Alrighty then. She went out for an encore, and came back and sang Change of Heart (but she seemed pissed off to sing it). Then she sang Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. Kevin and I headed out at this time, sure that was the last song. She did sing Time After Time after that, and I believe one other song to end the show. She only played four of her hit songs! Four. I was really disappointed. I think a lot of people were. I expected her to play the new stuff, with old stuff mixed in. You know, like every other band does! The word diva comes to mind. She really can sing though, and she is passionate about blues. I guess I lack that passion.

Oh well. It was a date for us, and the views were beautiful, COLD, but beautiful.

Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, August 16, 2010

Manic Monday

I picked up my classroom keys today. I thought about it and thought about it, and decided to just go and get them. I didn't plan on going until next week to do anything about my classroom, but I may have changed my mind, after seeing my classroom.
Oh look! Some low life scum torched our play structure...
BOTH of them. See that blue thing? That USED to be a twisty slide. There used to be a green, double slide on the other structure. It's really annoying, and who knows how long it will sit like this before it gets replaced? I doubt we'll have a new one by the start of school, and that's just horrible for the kids.
This is the reason I may have to work in my classroom sooner than expected. Was there a poltergeist here? How am I going to get all of those desks off my desk? I especially like the hula hoop bag at the very top.
Oh look, more desks up high. I have never returned to school with my furniture this way. My crap is all over the place. It does not make me happy.
This makes me happy though. Quinn and I got ice cream while we waited for Riley to finish his Scout meeting. Quinn actually had two scoops!

I am still madly cleaning things out around here. Working on Quinn's room. He got a new shelf. I actually bought this for my classroom, but it's too tall, so I swapped it for Quinn's lower shelf. See those blue baskets on the bottom shelves? Those were the BIGGEST pain in the ass to build. I uttered all kinds of colorful words trying to put those damn things together. I got it though. I won.