Friday, September 26, 2008

These days

I'm still in shock after reading Shirley's blog this morning. It's difficult to understand how far reaching a lack of credit can affect the way our world runs until you have friends that are broadsided by the consequences.
We've been listening to the debate this evening. I feel as frustrated as Jim Lehrer at their inability to answer the questions put before them. I do feel like Obama is doing a better job, but my judgment could be clouded.
We had our second day with Mrs. Crawford the sub today. All went well. It was good to have such good support.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

She's got them job search blues

I feel for Liseanne. It ain't easy searching for jobs when there are so many other people doing the same thing. She keeps plugging away every day, just wishing someone would CHOOSE HER.
It was my turn to take Fran to her PT today. Cathy decided to put her on the treadmill rather than in the pool, because of her stitches. I've never seen someone tied into a harness, suspended and walking on a treadmill. Very interesting! A young man was brought into the treadmill room by his therapist just minutes after Fran had begun. Cathy went ahead and yielded to them since it doesn't take long use up a patient's endurance on that contraption.
Oops! Time for Thursday TV! :>)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

me an izzy

Izzy and I are hanging out in the kitchen. Trying to stay out of the way of the people putting together Fran's new shelf from Ikea. So many little packages just the right size for a puppy to put in her mouth!
What were all those things I thought I needed to do on the computer anyway?
I just learned (with Lisa's help) how to make the backgrounds of my cdrs transparent. Now to start putting graphics on dark shirts. Unless, of course, I can't locate the original. In that case I have to start from (almost) scratch.
Here's one change I've made on Cafepress. I'm not sure if I made the right choice as far as changing the black to white on the dark shirts.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

IKEA thanks for finding and keeping my keys!

Fran's stitches are good - a little puckery due to the rough edge of the bread knife.

N won a new furnace for us on a local auction tonight. Great deal and then we'll have those energy rebates, too. :>)
Now we don't have to wait for the shoe to drop on the old one. Works out well since much of his vacation isn't transferable so he'll be getting cashed out. I told him he should switch more often. ;>)
We drove up to retrieve my keys at IKEA. (eye roll over stupidity) I'm glad that's done! Then we stopped at Burgerville and Fry's Electronics. The kindergartners needed new headphones and they're about the only place to get cheap cheap ones. I also bought video editing software. Now I'm really committed!! The people at Salem Market were still smiling at me yesterday, so either they haven't seen it or they're okay with it.
I wrote and resigned my position as building union rep yesterday. I decided that 15 years is long enough and I need to get something off my plate. Two people replied to the email I sent out to classified staff telling me about how busy their lives are. So now it's in the union's lap. I feel bad and yet . . . .
Lisa's helping Sara cut tomatoes. Yikes! That sounds even scarier!
It rained so hard when we went to IKEA today. A man nearly backed over us in the pick-up area. He was horrified - which I thought was a good thing. But we were laughing ourselves silly for some reason. I'm sure he thought we were nuts. Maybe the helplessness of the wheelchair as a wee car backed up towards us?? I dunno.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

What? Twice in one day? Unheard of!

Now where did I last leave you?
Somewhere around the time when Fran picked up a knife?
All was fine until her fifth or so slice of the hearty loaf of bread. Then something went awry with that nasty serrated bread knife and Liseanne & I next found her clutching a napkin to the fingers of her left hand.
Liseanne and N drove her to the emergency room since the urgent care clinic was closed. Sometime within the following 2.5 hours, they admitted her and stitched up her middle finger.
Wimpy me and little Izzy stayed safe and concerned at home.

Gimli bee

Beautiful Peaches, Peaches for me, Beautiful Peaches . . .

We were in and out of the truck from 9 to 12 today; we went to Salem Public Market, the church of bottle deposits, Fred Meyer, Costco, Petco and followed Lisa into unfamiliar eating territory. :>O (her review will be on eatsalem on wednesday and mine tomorrow) I heard some great Paula comments on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me. I think we heard one about how she has a gift for the world of finance, because she was ahead of the curve and lost her money first. She cracks me up. I'm sure it hits a bit close to where she lives, but isn't that the basis for most humor?
I have a new favorite movie - The Waitress. We watched it last night and I just fell in total and complete love. One of those that you're so disappointed to have end so you keep watching the lame extras? Captain Hammer from Dr. Horrible was in it - I kept waiting for him to burst into song. It was the kind of movie where that could happen, too. A kind of cartoon edge to the characters.
I've been playing with my Salem Public Market movie today. J's bro, Collin, suggested I use vimeo. It did improve the appearance, but it didn't work as well on our older computer. Not a good sign, when many folks use older technology.
Made me feel good yesterday when our librarian was introducing me to someone new in the school by saying how she keeps trying to talk me into working in the library with her. I told her I'd jump ship in a minute, if the hours were good.
Fran's in the kitchen .. . . with a knife . . . I best go assist.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My keys are at IKEA? Yeah, no kidding!

Last night was a pretty slow night for the Red Cross. I got to chat a long time with volunteer John (retired math teacher) since it took N so long to make his way through the queue. Joe, another volunteer, got a good chuckle over how far I left my old man in the dust. Gotta love those old men!

Here's your laugh of the day: after Fran's Portland appointment today, she asked if we'd take her to IKEA. N reminded us part way through the store that it was his rehearsal night and to keep that in mind time wise. We sped up the process a notch and then hopped in the car to head home. Once we ate our Carl's Jr dinner, drove home and I sent him on his way, I realized that I needed to go to Costco for a Fran errand. Could NOT find my keys ANYWHERE. :>O And so Lisa drove us in. When we returned home I called Carl's first - nada, then IKEA - "yes, we have your keys!" Yay!! "Uh, well, I'm out of town. Could you hang onto them for awhile?"
I'm so glad they're safe!

At morning recess, there were suddenly two children screaming, crying and running towards me. One dropped down on her knees in the gravel (yes, in a dramatic fashion) and began to throw rocks at herself. I gathered them both together and asked them to take some deep breaths. The first blurted out, "she said that I hit her in the eye and nose, but I didn't, I was grabbing the bar behind her!" sob, gasp L, who ran out once she heard the screams, talked to the second child and found out that her feelings were hurt, but not her body.
The osteopath appointment was pretty much a good bye until she sees the doctor at Salem Rehab. to see if the osteopath will be needed in the proposed therapy. He did do his work on her and made her feel better. So that's something.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

First science of new school year

Well, it wasn't horrible, but there weren't any inspiring moments during science today either. I'm sure it's not a first, but there were several (counting both classes) short people who couldn't remember what letters were in their name. I'm not a hawk when it comes to upper or lower case during the first couple of weeks, BUT I do think a 5-6 year old should know how to write their name in some fashion. There are some who believe it's due to the growing technological nature of their environments. I don't think it's a trend (I hope it's not). We have years when the majority are smart little cookies, we have middling years and then we have the others. I'm still not sure what kind of year this is and wouldn't venture to make a prediction based only on the writing of names this early.
How's that for a short essay on, "I really don't know which category this group falls in". ;>)
Hmmmm, blood date tomorrow. Where to go, where to go? Maybe Copperjohn's or maybe ??

Monday, September 15, 2008

Good Eats

We enjoyed some good eating this weekend and even found a few minutes here and there for sitting in the backyard and relaxing.
The kids had picked blackberries at Minto Brown Park last week, so Fran (with Lisa's help) turned them into scones and cobbler. And then there were the baby back ribs I picked up at Costco. Lisa and I put an herb rub on them and N added barbeque sauce during the grilling process. Definitely good eats!
That clock radio alarm sure sounded loud this morning! I must still be in "transition to school" mode.
Speaking of school . . . our principal told elementary ed they needed to find a .5 position for our 4th KG session teacher (who had been hired permanently for some reason). They came back to her later that day, said that they couldn't, would she put her back as a 4th session teacher. So after the shuffling to create 3 classes out of 4, the teachers needed to go back and reverse the process. I've been around long enough to see a number of things happen, but this is definitely a first. I certainly feel for those families.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Leisure is your brain on a different task

I can't believe how many hours I spent on my video project. And yet . . . I wouldn't have it any other way. Feels good to do something different, something out of my comfort zone, something that makes me frustrated - because that has to be a sign of growth (right?).
Lise and her J went to Shrewsbury Faire in King City today and after they returned Fran and her J went out and about to get out of the house. I'm so glad he was able to drive up. I feel like we should give him a Costco gift card to help out with his gas. It's good having everyone in the house, even if it would be even better to have a bit more space.
Lise is in the kitchen making a side dish to go with the ribs Norm's getting ready to put on the grill. :>)

Oh and can I say how much I appreciate my family continuing to email me even though I rarely email back these days? Part of it is more competition for the computers (it's easier in the summer) and part of it is avoiding the possibility of complaining about life in general.
Bad habit that.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Power to the chore doers

Here I am - beginning the editing process!
Thanks to J doing the dishes and Fran helping with dinner.
It may not be the end . . . BUT it's a beginning.

We put the AM and PM classes together today. And you know what? They're still a nice group of kids. Makes me happy to know that there are good parents out there who care about behavior and growth. Children need chores and responsibilities. We've had these discussions in our house for years. We don't claim to have been perfect parents. We'd be fooling ourselves. But we do think it's important for children to make age appropriate decisions that increase in importance as they gain age. Heaven help the child sent off to college who never experienced making some of their own decisions. We've probably all seen and heard of those messes.
Okay, back to the editing software . . .

Click here for a link to a guide that answers the question, "which chores at which age?", and also offers a variety of behavior charts to print and edit for free.

Coffee's ready!

N and I still need to work on who's taking which appointments for the rest of the month. Why is that so tough to take care of? When he took Fran to her PT appointment yesterday, they found out the appointment had been moved from 3 PM to 9 AM. But we're sure we didn't receive a phone call. She had a migraine anyway, so it was probably for the best.
Tomorrow is the last day we'll have 4 sessions of kindergarten. Phone calls were being made after school yesterday to those who have priority on the list - since 4 students will need to shift to the morning to help balance out the population.
Yet another evening without making it to the laptop to edit. (sigh) Maybe today . . .

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A Good Day in Kinderland

Two great groups of kiddos! :>)
Of course the PM class will change, but I think it will still be a great year. LB was talking to them about raccoons and one little guy said that they sleep at night, when a hand in the back shot up at the same time as the owner blurted out, "they call that noctural, teacher!"
I love those moments. They give me hope that the kids will be doing some deep thinking when we do science this school year. There have been years when I feel like I'm going through the motions, but at least we're getting in some listening and writing practice.
Fran's phone was supposed to be delivered today, but no one was home. I left the house at 5 PM to pick the phone up at the Fed-Ex building, but had misread their door hanger. The package would be available for pick-up from 4:30 - 5 PM NOT 5:30 PM. The old brain picks some interesting times to play tricks on me. I went ahead and took the opportunity to pick up the ingredients to make the pasta dish with bleu cheese, tomatoes and spinach. Very tasty, indeed!

and class begins

The beginning assessments are over and the kinders will arrive today. I can't wait to meet them all in a class setting. They seem like a great group of kids - much like last year.
I don't feel like we're ready, but that may be due to the questions regarding our low numbers with the addition of a 4th session. Nothing like a little upheaval with little ones and their parents to create some stress and controversy.
J's brother stopped in for a visit on his way home from Portland. I'm trying to be quiet and not disturb his slumber on the couch. Kinda tough when you're getting ready for work. I finally went ahead and turned on NPR. I figured the voices would provide a screen for all the little unexpected noises.
Hopefully, this evening I'll get a good opportunity to start editing the clips I took on Saturday. I like to have a big block of uninterrupted time.
Fran had a double header yesterday; two, one hour long appointments back to back. The timing worked out much better than I would've thought.
Okay, time to get moving.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Where's K's Groove?

We had a great day Saturday. So many things got done - one of my favorite kind of days. That kind AND the ones where we're totally rusticating. :>)
We ended the day with a drive to Corvallis. I love that drive - the back way. With autumn coming it'll just get better.
Once we arrived in town we realized that we'd picked one of their busier evenings to visit. The downtown sidewalks were full of happy groups of people of all ages, holding empty wine glasses in their hands. They were participating in the annual Rhapsody in the Vineyard Downtown Walk. Each person buys a wineglass that they take with them while they walk around to the local shops and try a different wine at each stop. What a great community event! I hope it catches on.
And so we were concerned about how busy American Dream Pizza/Crow Bar would be. Since the coveted roof was full with a 25 minute waiting list. We walked in to see if there was room to wait in the Crow Bar down the hall. Much to our surprise it was nearly empty. We decided on a pitcher of microbrew to drink while waiting, but when N went up to the bar to order the beer he was told that we could order our pizza, too. Time becomes more important than desired atmosphere when you have a 45 minute drive to get home, and so we decided to eat in the bar.
The longer we sat, the noiser it became, but it was gradual enough that we adjusted our voices to hear each other and even began to enjoy the happy din.
We ordered two medium pizzas; "Ska", with jerk chicken, feta, artichoke heart, roasted peppers, fresh tomato and a "Dream Special," with Italian sausage, Am bacon, mushroom, olive, tomato. Due to it's "irrisistableness", I think we order the Ska every visit. On top of their hearty crust, the strong, delicious flavor of the jerk chicken is a wonderful delight to the taste buds. Especially with the addition of feta, artichoke hearts and roasted peppers. I'm ready to go eat one of our few leftover slices after writing this! The Dream Special is a more traditional pizza for the less daring (we had one of those folks in our group of 4), but thanks to the excellent quality of the sausage and bacon it also has a delicious flavor - enough to stand up to the crust. We were enjoying each other's company so much that we ate more than we should've and so decided to take a walk around the downtown blocks. There were still many people out and about, but mostly gathered around the eating establishments that were still open. Everytime we visit Corvallis I tell myself I could easily live there with their bustling downtown, proximately to the coast and the extras provided to a community that is home to a university.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Diamond Lake Video

I guess you could call the following video a 3 person collaboration - Me, Fran and Randy.
Too bad we didn't get some shots of the bike riders preparing or actually riding around the lake.

Not only did we enjoy some wonderful company, but we were treated to some fine eating - Egg McMuffins, French toast, pulled pork sandwiches, Paella, fresh corn and coleslaw. Nearly all cooked or finished over the campfire.

Next time we'll know to bring more & better layers - particularly the coat part. A light fleece jacket just doesn't measure up when the temps drop below 50 degrees. Heck, just our long underwear would've helped! Oh, and more wine!
And maybe next time we'll have an opportunity to make our dutch oven meatloaf. :>)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Schooool's in for Sep tem berr

I think I finished every little school thing I had hoped to this evening. Or hmmm, maybe we've passed the evening mark? I did neglect to get to the Office Something store to buy some labels for a school project, but there's always TOMORROW. (ugh)
How can going to work and doing easy chores like name writing, typing, cutting, gluing and laminating (and catching up with Kim) be so tiring? I come home and I'm beat. Is it all in my head? Do I just need to shove and nudge myself? I did go out and run with Izzy for a while after work, but not like a week ago.
Speaking of puppy - it's time for a potty break. :>)

Monday, September 1, 2008

Cage Fight

One source of our entertainment this past weekend while we camped at Diamond Lake with a great group of people and their critters.