Saturday, June 30, 2007

Sleep Away Camp

Twelve is going to sleep-away camp. I will be driving her there today, and will pick her up next Saturday. It's a loooooong drive each way, but oh so worth it.

Twelve went to the same camp last summer. It is through the church that we belong to, and is similar to the weekend retreat that I recently went on. I know that she will return calmer and more centered (as opposed to self-centered). She requested that I put a countdown timer on my blog, and helped me pick this one out.

The house will feel quiet with her gone. Ten will have no one to argue with and I am sure that he will miss her. I will too.

Thursday, June 28, 2007


Innocence...something so precious and once lost, cannot be recaptured. Sometimes I wonder, if I am harming my children by trying to protect them from subject matter that I feel they are to young to be exposed to.

Now I'm not talking 'Harry Potter' PG-13 ratings...I'm talking things like...molestation, homosexuality, sex. My feeling has always been that I would know when the time is right to discuss these issues, and more, with both Twelve and Ten. I've gone over with both children, from the time that they were very little, things about how no one has the right to touch them without their permission, I've used correct names for body parts, and whenever they've asked questions, I've answered them honestly. I think I've pretty much covered all the issues with Twelve (although I suspect that as she continues to mature, things will come up that I've forgotten to talk to her about). But Ten is another matter.

They say that girls mature faster than boys...this I can believe. Not just physically, but emotionally as well. Twelve asked questions (at too early of an age in my opinion) and I provided her with the answers. Evidently the girls at school brought up these subjects, and Twelve, not knowing about them, asked me for clarification. Ten is just starting to ask questions. These questions are coming from conversations that he has with his friends, who seem somehow far more sophisticated and less innocent than Ten. These ten year old kids talk about molestation, rape, homosexuality as if they are discussing baseball statistics. Of course they use these subjects to make themselves sound more worldly and sophisticated...I don't know if they really understand (let's hope not) what they are talking about.

I want Ten to maintain his innocence. After all, he is my baby. Yet, I fear that by not exposing him to topics which I feel are way beyond his need to know, at this time, I am somehow setting him up to be picked on and ridiculed by his friends. It seems that his innocence is working against him and that I am being forced to discuss things with him that he is really not mature enough to understand. As he asks questions, I am answering them so that he becomes knowledgeable enough to 'hold his own' when confronted with these issues. But it makes me sad.

Gone are the days of Barney (the purple dinosaur) and Dragon Tales. Ten continues to maintain a belief in all things magic...I just wish that he didn't need to learn about all of the other stuff. I figured that there was still time...evidently I figured wrong. If you're wondering why the title of this post is A-T-T-I-C...well, today an older boy at camp told Ten to look down in his own shirt and say those letters. Ten refused, and when he came home from camp he asked me what it means. I had no idea and had to ask Twelve for clarification. Evidently, I have been living in a cave for a long time, because Twelve knew what it meant right away. So, before I tell you the answer, let's see if you've been living in a cave with me, or if you know what it means.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Mystery Solved

Took Ten and Twelve, once again, to see the Nancy Drew mystery. We used our 'readmittance' tickets to get in. They were both very happy to be getting ICEE's and popcorn again. Two times in one week...egads...I certainly wouldn't win any "Nutrition Conscious Mommy" Awards. (sigh)

Told the manager at the concession stand that we were back for a repeat performance, and I felt very 'ripped off' that I had to buy the ICEE's and popcorn again. They gave me free popcorn...still had to purchase the ICEE's. I felt somewhat satisfied, even though I know that neither cost the theater anywhere near what they charge.

Turned out, we had only missed the last 15 minutes of the movie due to the alarm on Monday. Yep, that's right, we sat through 1 hour and 15 minutes of a movie, for the second time in 3 days in order to see the last 15 minutes. Thank goodness it was a cute movie. At least now we know "Who Done It".

Monday, June 25, 2007

It's Gonna Be A Long Summer...

First real day of summer vacation...and I can tell that it will be a long summer. If I hear one more chorus of "I'm bored, there's nothing to do." I think that I will scream.

Decided to take my mom, Ten and Twelve to see the movie "Nancy Drew". We were all settled in to watch the movie. About 1 hour and 15 minutes into the movie, lights started flashing in the theater. Now please understand, that I have been to many movies in my life, and sat in many theaters, and have never had lights start flashing in the middle of a movie. At first everyone thought that it was a special effect from the movie (it actually fit into what was going on at that moment.)

The movie and flashing lights continued and then we heard a siren/alarm. Amazingly everyone stood up in an orderly fashion and proceeded to the lobby of the movie theater. We were told that it was a false alarm, that a bird had set it off, and that we could go back into the theater to watch the end of the movie. Unfortunately, the theater could not seem to turn off the alarm so everyone was given passes to return another day to see the movie.

If you think about it, and clearly I everyone a ticket to replace the ticket they bought, really wasn't 'giving anything away' from the theaters perspective. All of the people in the various theaters had already purchased their drinks and snacks. If they come back to watch the movie again, they will purchase everything again...and the theater will come out ahead. This of course, doesn't take into account that everyone will have to sit through 1 hour and 15 minutes of the movie again, just to get to the part that we missed.

(On a side note, one of Twelve's friends was also in the theater , and this was the second time that this had happened to the same theater.) Now normally, I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but in this case, I the movie theater hurting for money...and using this alarm thing to make more money at the concession stands?

Clearly...if this is what I am spending my time thinking about, it will definitely be a long summer.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Something to Tell Your Kids

I don't know if this is an Urban Legend, or if it is true. I received this today via email and thought that I would share...just in case. I took the time to go over this with both Ten and Twelve...(Twelve was quite surprised at how easy it really is to give information away without realizing it). Not to make anyone paranoid...

After tossing her books on the sofa, she decided to grab a snack and get on-line. She logged on under her screen name ByAngel213. She checked her Buddy List and saw GoTo123 was on. She sent him an instant message:

ByAngel213:Hi. I'm glad you are on! I thought someone was following me home today. It was really weird!

GoTo123:LOL You watch too much TV. Why would someone be following you?Don't you live in a safe neighborhood?

ByAngel213:Of course I do. LOL I guess it was my imagination cuz' I didn't see anybody when I looked out.

GoTo123:Unless you gave your name out on-line. You haven't done that have you?

ByAngel213:Of course not. I'm not stupid you know.

GoTo123:Did you have a softball game after school today?

ByAngel213:Yes and we won!!

GoTo123:That's great! Who did you play?

ByAngel213:We played the Hornets. LOL. Their uniforms are so gross! They look like bees. LOL

GoTo123:What is your team called?

ByAngel213:We are the Canton Cats. We have tiger paws on our uniforms. They are really cool.

GoTo1 23:Did you pitch?

ByAngel213:No I play second base. I got to go. My homework has to be done before my parents get home. I don't want them mad at me. Bye!

GoTo123:Catch you later. Bye

Meanwhile.......GoTo123 went to the member menu and began to search for her profile. When it came up,he highlighted it and printed it out. He took out a pen and began to write down what he knew about Angel so far.
Her name: Shannon
Birthday: Jan. 3, 1985
Age: 13
State where she lived: North Carolina
Hobbies: softball, chorus, skating and going to the mall. Besides this information, he knew she lived in Canton because she had just told him. He knew she stayed by herself until 6:30 p.m. every afternoon until her parents came home from work. He knew she played softball on Thursday afternoons on the school team, and the team was named the Canton Cats. Her favorite number 7 was printed on her jersey. He knew she was in the eighth grade at the Canton Junior High School . She had told him all this in the conversations they had on- line. He had enough information to find her now.

Shannon didn't tell her parents about the incident on the way home from the ballpark that day. She didn't want them to make a scene and stop her from walking home from the softball games. Parents were always overreacting and hers were the worst. It made her wish she was not an only child. Maybe if she had brothers and sisters, her parents wouldn't be so overprotective.

By Thursday, Shannon had forgotten about the footsteps following her. Her game was in full swing when suddenly she felt someone staring at her. It was then that the memory came back. She glanced up from her second base position to see a man watching her closely. He was leaning against the fence behind first base and he smiled when she looked at him. He didn't look scary and she quickly dismissed the sudden fear she had felt.After the game, he sat on a bleacher while she talked to the coach. She noticed his smile once again as she walked past him. He nodded and she smiled back. He noticed her name on the back of her shirt. He knew he had found her. Quietly, he walked a safe distance behind her. It was only a few blocks to Shannon's home, and once he saw where she lived he quickly returned to the park to get his car.

Now he had to wait. He decided to get a bite to eat until the time came to go to Shannon's house. He drove to a fast food restaurant and sat there until time to make his move. Shannon was in her room later that evening when she heard voices in the living room.

"Shannon, come here," her father called. He sounded upset and she couldn't imagine why. She went into the room to see the man from the ballpark sitting on the sofa.

"Sit down," her father began, "this man has just told us a most interesting story about you." Shannon sat back. How could he tell her parents anything? She had never seen him before today!

"Do you know who I am, Shannon ?" the man asked.

"No," Shannon answered.

"I am a police officer and your online friend, GoTo123."

Shannon was stunned.

"That's impossible! GoTo is a kid my age! He's 14. And he lives in Michigan!"

The man smiled. "I know I told you all that, but it wasn't true. You see, Shannon, there are people on-line who pretend to be kids; I was one of them. But while others do it to injure kids and hurt them, I belong to a group of parents who do it to protect kids from predators. I came here to find you to teach you how dangerous it is to talk to people on-line. You told me enough about yourself to make it easy for me to find you. You named the school you went to, the name of your ball team and the position you played. The number and name on your jersey just made finding you a breeze."

Shannon was stunned. "You mean you don't live in Michigan ?"

He laughed. "No, I live in Raleigh . It made you feel safe to think I was so far away, didn't it?"

She nodded.

"I had a friend whose daughter was like you. Only she wasn't as lucky. The guy found her and murdered her while she was home alone. Kids are taught not to tell anyone when they are alone, yet they do it all the time on-line. The wrong people trick you into giving out information a little here and there on-line. Before you know it, you have told them enough for them to find you without even realizing you have done it. I hope you've learned a lesson from this and won't do it again.

Friday, June 22, 2007

We'll Be Havin' Fun All Summer Long...

(My apologies to the Beach Boys)...Finally, Summer has arrived...and with it, the start of my first summer off of work in a very long time. Yippee! What a glorious feeling to know that the summer spreads itself in front of me with nothing to do and nowhere to go (other than camping in July, and a wedding in August). I feel like a kid again!

My hope for this summer, is to be able to take some time to relax, declutter my house, go to the beach, read, sleep...well you get the idea. And I plan to start these summer activities, at 3:15pm today. Why at 3:15 you ask? Well, I somehow (I really don't know what possessed me to do it), volunteered (there's that word again) to help out at a Girl Scout Day Camp today. Twelve and her friend Eventempered, volunteered to be Program Aides at the camp this summer. The camp only runs for 1 week...and wouldn't you know it, today is the last day and Twelve asked me to please volunteer to be there for the I did.

I haven't been to camp in a long, long time. Since I happen to have very fond memories of day camp, from when I was a kid, I guess in reality I will be starting my Summer Fun at 8:15 this morning. So today officially starts my first day of summer (I know the Summer Solstice was yesterday)...and I can't wait to get it started. For those of you that have to work this summer...I'll be sure to catch a wave for you;~)

On another note...for those of you that are interested, here is another update from Joan:

HI! We've spent two days here in Ashford Castle which is everything the brochure said it was...glorious and stately. The grounds our incredible and we took a walk along some of the paths leading to various gardens etc. The John Wayne/Maureen O'Hara movie "The Quiet Man" was filmed around this area and we saw some of the cottages and the bridge made famous in the film. Our dinners have been scrumptuous and the service top-notch. I hope my photos do it justice.

Yesterday we visited Kylemore Abbey which was it's a river boat cruise and then back to Dublin for our last two days. The rain the past few days has managed to come only while we were on the bus or in the castle so we've managed to stay dry for the most part. We even saw some blue sky and sun it looks overcast and stormy.

I think we're all about ready to come home so the 11 day tour was the perfect length. Riding in a bus get's really weary after a while and I seemed to have developed a bit of motion sickness (particularly when sitting in the back of the bus). It doesnt help that I'm a bit claustrophobic. Bus touring, however, still beats driving a car here...the roads are incredibly narrow and then there's that thing about driving on the opposite side of the road while sitting in the opposite side of the car.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

I've Been Tagged!...Rockin' Girl Blogger

Michele at The Rocky Mountain Retreat tagged me with this Rockin' Girl Blogger pink tag thingy. She also wrote something very nice about me...and I truly appreciate it...Thanks Michele.

To steal...I mean borrow from Michele's I don't have to retype this information...I have plagarized...I mean lifted the following paragraph directly from her blog...

"Now I must choose 5 women bloggers worthy of this beautiful pink button and that shouldn't be too hard. If you get tagged, grab your well deserved pretty pink badge up top and slap it on your site and then list 5 Rockin' Girl Bloggers. Here's my no particular order...:

1. Claw~less & Ball~less: I love this blog. It is written by a cat, Patches, who is not a female cat, but is not really a masculine cat (he's missing a few parts...if you know what I mean). I figure that since he is really not a 'he' anymore that he would qualify as a 'she of sorts'. He lives with Missus Chicca, who is an amazing artist, and who shares some of her drawings on Fridays. Patches and Missus Chicca are real creative creatures/people, who's poems, drawings, and posts make me think!
2. Meno's Blog: This is one of the first blogs that I found to read when I started in blogland. Through her blog I have found many other wonderful blogs. Meno (not her real name) brings up thought provoking, sometime funny, always interesting topics that she explores with her wit and unique perspective on life. This blog is a must read!
3. The Erstwhile Librarian : Joan, The Erstwhile Librarian, is a retired librarian (she retired young, just like Meno...I'm jealous of them both). She writes about her day to day life (and what a life it is...she is currently in Ireland, sleeping in castles). I love reading what she has to say. Oh did I forget to mention...she is also my sister;~)
4. Speaking of... : This blog is written by Amanda, a young energetic woman, who has a great singing voice, knows about podcasts (and has a great speaking voice), and writes about her hectic life, which just happens to include working and going to school. She has a great sense of humor and I often find myself identifying with what she has to say...(even though I lived that kind of life a long time ago...and no, I am not disclosing how old I am).
5. Fefyfomanna - Renee is a wife, mother, homeschooler, girlscout leader and LLL leader, just to name a few things that make her tick. She is a down to earth woman who talks about her daily life, and her darling daughter. I enjoy reading her blog (even if she told me that she was posting today, and didn't...I still think that she's a Rockin' Girl Blogger.
There are many more people that I could think of to tag with this award... Patti , I was going to tag you, but it seems you've already been tagged. Pam, I love reading your blog...your sense of humor amazes me (but I'm thinking you're too busy right when you are not so busy...consider yourself tagged:)

Another Irish Update...

Here are two days worth of updates from Joan. (Sure wish I would have been there yesterday instead of at school #3). The first two updates are from yesterday... #3 is from this morning. The internet is a wonderful thing! I love getting email from Joan...somehow it helps me not miss her as much.

#1.Well...I wished for Irish weather and it's exactly what we have! It rained yesterday afternoon and evening and the forecast for today and the rest of the week is rain, rain, rain. Except for making the views of the glorious landscape gray and foggy, it's been nice to see a little much different from the sun, sun and more sun we're used to.

#2.So here we are at the Dromoland Castle. Our lovely room is in the basement...or should I say dungeon? It is drizzling at the moment and I guess we need to tour the grounds with our Goretex jackets and umbrellas.

...And from this morning...
#3.Hey! So we spent the night in what seemed to be the basement floor of the Castle Dromoland in what we are calling the dungeon "wing." The room was fairly small but well appointed and, for the most part, quiet. There is no air conditioning in castles apparently (duh) so the room got a little musty and dank but isn't that what a castle is supposed to be like? Dinner last night was only so-so in the lovely dining room. The tour members were only offered a choice of Irish beef or sea bass and, since I had sea bass the night before, I tried to pass on both entrees. They were kind enough to offer me some chicken instead which was better.

It looks dark and stormy outside (so what else is new) but I think the rain has stopped for at least the moment. Today we leave the castle and make our way to the Cliffs of Moher. After that, it's on to the Castle Ashford where we spend 2 nights. I'm hoping our room there will be a little bigger and nicer but it's the flip of a coin. You get what you get!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

You Can't Please All of The People All of the Time

This morning, I had a meeting with two parents about their son. This school year, I have been working with their son two mornings a week, before school. I went out of my way, this school year, to get to work 1 hour earlier than I needed to, in order to be able to work with their son. I have been excited about the progress that their son has made. He has worked very hard and is now able to articulate what he wants to say better than before. Unfortunately this boy still doesn't speak 'normally', and is a long way from achieving that goal, but he surpassed any goal that had been set for him at the meeting which was held last year.

Instead of the parents thanking me for coming in early two days a week to work with their son, or thanking me for all of the hard work I have done with their son, they decided to complain about the lack of service their son received the previous year (mind you, I did not even work at that school last year) and the quality of therapy that he received this year. I will tell you that this really pissed me off.

How dare these parents insult the quality of therapy that I provide. I am a professional, and I take great pride in the work that I do. Why did they continue to bring their son for therapy, two mornings a week, before school, if they felt that the quality of therapy was lacking? Why didn't they come and watch the therapy (I always welcome parents)? Why didn't they make an appointment to speak with me months ago, if this was how they truly feel? Are they so angry that their son is not 'normal' that they are blaming me for his disability? Well fuck them! Their son has been on this planet for 14 years. I have only been a part of his life for 1 hour/week for the past 9 months...what miracle exactly was I supposed to perform?

The way that I am feeling right now, I will NEVER go out of my way again to help a student, based on a parents request. They say that no good deed goes unpunished...well is this case 'they' are absolutely right. I went out of my way to help this child, and I got bitten in the butt. This saddens me, because I love what I do and I love working with kids. I have always gone the extra mile in order to help a child reach their potential. Now that I've been burned by these parents...I think that presented with the same situation, I would make a different choice. I would tell the parents that I am sorry, but I cannot work with their child. You know what stinks about that? This boy made so much progress. His teachers all came to me throughout this school year telling me how much better he speaks and what a wonderful job I was doing. Yet because of these ungrateful parents, the next child will not be able to benefit from my 'good heart'. Their selfishness has ruined it for the next child. I hate these people.

If they had just thanked me for coming in early and not questioned my professionalism, I would have gone the extra mile to understand their, I wouldn't even walk two steps to try to understand them.

Instead of focusing on the progress their son has made, they chose to focus on their anger, and take their frustrations out on the wrong woman...I feel sorry for their son.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Greetings From Ireland

Just received the following email from Joan. Thought that I'd share it with you all. Sounds like she and dh are having a fabulous time. Without further is Joan's email:

I finally have a chance to email's complimentary here at the Aghadoe Heights Hotel and Spa in Killarney. Hope everyone and everything is fine with you.

Our flights were fine and uneventful although neither of us slept the entire way. I figure I was up for 48 hours before I actually got any sleep but, other than that, we survived.

We're having a fine ol' time so far and we've seen nothing but green hills and valleys. It was pouring down rain when we arrived in Dublin but we've only seen lots of clouds and sprinkles since then although there is supposed to be a real rain storm today...I haven't looked outside yet. The hotels have been quite nice although the one we're in right now is very modern (Asian motif) and not what we expected. Our room overlooks a lake and a's so cool! Our last hotel was in a baronial manor and was much more what we expected in terms of old world charm. We haven't been to any of the castles yet...that's later in the week.

Prices here are incredibly high and even a glass of Diet Coke can cost several dollars. Oh dad would say, it's only money. We've bought some souvenirs but tell the kids I haven't found that lepruchaun and his pot of gold yet...I'll keep looking!

Haven't been to BlogLand so could you please let everyone know that we're having a great time and will have lots of photos to share when we get back. ....(then there was some personal stuff)


Friday, June 15, 2007

Uh-Oh...Here Come The Boys

Imagine if you will this scene:
Twelve, Ten and I walked over to our community pool this afternoon. There weren't any other kids there. I called my Girl Scout co-leader, and she brought her daughter...we'll call her 'Nicegirl', over to the pool.

Now to refresh your memory, Ten just finished 4th grade, Twelve just finished 7th grade, and NiceGirl just finished 8th grade. The three of them were having fun until...two boys from their school (who just finished 8th grade), came to the pool.

All of a sudden Twelves and Nicegirls demeanors changed. Their faces and body languages went through a total transformation, and what had moments before been two girls having fun, suddenly became two girls exuding nervous, excited energy, upon the arrival of these boys.

Now as an observer, I found this all sweet and mildly entertaining. I was transported back to the summers when I was Twelve and Thirteen. I remember, the excitement I felt when a cute boy came anywhere near my vicinity, that nervousness I felt when I thought a cute boy might talk to me, and that general feeling of anticipation of the unknown.

As Twelves mother, it was harder to stay amused. Although I knew that Twelve was starting to become more aware of boys... it wasn't in my face, so I was able to not really think about it too much. However, watching Twelve become more animated around these boys was eye-opening and somewhat unsettling to say the least.

Somehow, I managed to observe what was going on and keep my mouth shut...(which is no small feat for me)...I noticed that Twelve looked over towards me a number of times while all of this was going on. I figure that she was looking to me to see how I was going to react. I believe that I managed to appear neutral to the whole situation. I don't know if that was the right thing to do or not, but nothing untoward was going on. (Had it been more, I would have definitely intervened). I knew that what I was watching was all part of normal teenage boy-girl interactions. was hard.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I Miss Her Already

My sister, Joan, hasn't even been gone for 24 hours, yet I miss her already. She called me at 6:45 this morning to tell me that they were at their friends house and getting ready to leave for the airport. She didn't have a lot of time to talk, so our conversation was short.

When I left work this afternoon, I wanted to call her, because that is one of the times that I often speak with her...while I am driving home from work...only I couldn't call her...she was already on the airplane.

When I was walking around the big box store this afternoon and I found some p.j.'s that we both were looking for, I wanted to call my sister and tell her about the p.j.'s and some shirts that I found, to see if she was interested in having me pick something up for her...but I couldn't.

While I was sitting in my car today, waiting to pick Ten up from school, I wanted to call Joan to see how her day was going, and to tell her about mine...but I couldn't.

I know that this is just temporary, and that in ten days, she will return...but until she gets back, how am I ever going to survive not talking with her?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Tired...Who's Tired?

Just wondering...have you ever felt this tired?

Monday, June 11, 2007

Signed, sealed, and delivered...

Well thanks to Patti, I decided to try to make a seal. I am known as a techno-tard...meaning that for some reason, unbeknownst to me, I have great difficulty with blogging uploads, and downloads, and reloads, and name it, I don't seem to understand it.
This drives me quietly crazy, as I have always prided myself on being able to figure anything out. For some reason (probably that I just haven't had the time to sit and play on my computer, or on blogger for that matter) getting 'stuff' onto my blog seems a daunting task.
Thanks to Patti's encouragement, and Meno saying that she was going to try this (which for some reason got my competitive spirit fired up), I decided to make a seal and figure out how to get it onto my blog. Patti was right, it wasn't hard at all. Just my fear of failure stopped me. Now all I have to do is take a picture of my hands and post it for Patches. Is it summer yet?

Sunday, June 10, 2007

So Much To Do, So Little Time

There are a few things that I wanted to accomplish this weekend, that I never got to. First off, Patches asked me to post a picture of my hands, and then Patti has made two cool seals and suggested that I try to make one myself.

Somehow this weekend has flown by, and I have done neither task. I spent all Saturday with Twelve, Eventempered, and Eventempered's mom at a Girl Scout event (yeah I know, Girl Scouts is over...but not Twelve's involvement...and therefore not my involvement). Then today, after services, we came home for a little while, I wrote two four-page reports, and then Twelve and Eventempered had to go to a training so that they could volunteer at a Girl Scout day camp for one week this summer.

Suddenly it's Sunday night, and I can either post a picture of my hands and attempt a seal, or I can visit all of my friends in blogland. Since I am social, by nature, well...I am choosing to visit my friends in blogland. (I'm also intimidated about attempting the above tasks, so commenting will hopefully get me off the hook).

Ten and Twelve have 5 more days of school, and I have 9 more days of work...but who's counting?

Friday, June 8, 2007

My Week At A Glance

Car Repair $1000 (boo hiss) Email from my boss that I got school #2 back (yeah)

New Tires for Car : $500 (boo hiss) Sister rescued me and we went to lunch together (yeah)

End of year Girl Scout picnic (yeah)
Twelve didn't have to be there the whole time (yeah)
Girl Scout parents thanked my co-leader and me with money trees (yeah)

Girl Scout leader end of year meeting. (yeah)
Given an 'Outstanding Volunteer' pin (yeah)
Given an 'Outstanding Leader' pin (yeah)
(As an aside...I think that these pins were bribes by the service unit to try to entice me to continue being a leader)

Well it's just yeah for being Friday

All in all, it turned out to be a great week. Now if the association where I live will just have a quorum for the voting meeting next week (when I will officially be off of the Board of Directors) that will be the icing on the cake. Happy Friday!!!!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

It Feels Good To Be Done

The last official Girl Scout event, as a troop, is finally over! We had our picnic this evening, and gave each of the girls their 'Silver Awards'. The parents came, and a good time was had by all.

As a thank you from the parents, my co-leader and I each received a lovely 'Money Tree'. (I plan to plant mine outside, and grow a forest of these trees. I'm hoping to grow back some of the money that I had to spend on my car this week) .

Now you might be wondering if Twelve actually had a good time. Well, she did! Of course that was probably because she was only at the picnic for a grand total of 30-35 minutes. She was at the picnic for about 20 minutes at the start and about 10-15 minutes at the end.

Why you ask, was Twelve only at the picnic for such a short time? I'll tell you why... Twelve's science teacher offered 10 extra credit points if her students attended the school play. It just so happened, that the play which was originally supposed to be last Friday night, was postponed until this evening, the same time as the picnic. Needless to say, even though Twelve, and her friend Eventempered, did not want to go to the play, they wanted to stay at the picnic even less. So, Eventempered's mother drove both girls to the Middle School and then brought them back to the picnic shortly before it ended. It was great for me because, I was able to enjoy myself without feeling Twelve's annoyance at having to be with the other girls.

I had a lovely time at the picnic, and am greatful that, this year, the parents showed their appreciation. So although on paper, Twelve and I are still registered with the troop... and on paper, I am still the leader...I am very, very glad to finally be done.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Car Woes...Updated

Spent 4 hours at the car dealership on Monday, only to find out that they needed to keep my car overnight (you just know that that was expensive!). Needed: service, rear brakes, a new battery and the car had a cracked engine mount in the front, and a collapsed engine mount in the back...which meant that I also needed new shocks. (Oh joy!) Picked up car today (good thing that it was payday!)...Then I had to go to big box store today for 4 new tires, which took 3 1/2 hours. (Everyone and their mother was taking advantage of the store coupons).

Thank goodness, I have a sister who was willing to pick me up and save me from spending too much money at the big box store. Instead, we went to lunch. Thanks Joan;~)

Monday, June 4, 2007

The Lizard...A Story for A Monday Morning

As I head off to have my car checked out this morning...I thought I would share this story with you...I received it as an e-mail from one of my cousins. Hope you enjoy...

If you have raised kids (or been one), and gone through the pet syndrome, including toilet flush burials for dead goldfish, the story below will have you laughing out LOUD!

Overview: I had to take my son's lizard to the vet. Here's what happened:
Just after dinner one night, my son came up to tell me there was "something wrong" with one of the two lizards he holds prisoner in his room."He's just lying there looking sick," he told me. "I'm serious, Dad. Can you help?"I put my best lizard-healer expression on my face and followed him into his bedroom. One of the little lizards was indeed lying on his back looking stressed. I immediately knew what to do."Honey," I called, "come look at the lizard!"

"Oh, my gosh!" my wife exclaimed. "She's having babies.""What?" my son demanded. "But their names are Bert and Ernie, Mom!"I was equally outraged. "Hey, how can that be? I thought we said we didn'twant them to reproduce," I said accusingly to my wife."Well, what do you want me to do, post a sign in their cage?" she inquired.(I think she actually said this sarcastically!)."No, but you were supposed to get two boys!" I reminded her, (in my mostloving, calm, sweet voice, while gritting my teeth)."Yeah, Bert and Ernie!" my son agreed."Well, it's just a little hard to tell on some guys, you know," she informed me (Again with the sarcasm!).

By now the rest of the family had gathered to see what was going on. I shrugged, deciding to make the best of it."Kids, this is going to be a wondrous experience," I announced. "We're about to witness the miracle of birth.""Oh, gross!" they shrieked. "Well, isn't THAT just great? What are we goingto do with a litter of tiny little lizard babies?" my wife wanted to know. We peered at the patient. After much struggling, what looked like a tinyfoot would appear briefly, vanishing a scant second later."We don't appear to be making much progress," I noted. "It's breech," mywife whispered, horrified. "Do something, Dad!" my son urged."Okay, okay." Squeamishly, I reached in and grabbed the foot when it next appeared, giving it a gentle tug. It disappeared. I tried several more timeswith the same results.

"Should I call 911?" my eldest daughter wanted to know. "Maybe they couldtalk us through the trauma." (You see a pattern here with the females in myhouse?)"Let's get Ernie to the vet," I said grimly. We drove to the vet with my son holding the cage in his lap. "Breathe, Ernie, breathe," he urged."I don't think lizards do Lamaze," his mother noted to him. (Women can be so cruel to their own young. I mean what she does to me is one thing, but this boy is of her womb, for God's sake). The vet took Ernie back to the examining room and peered at the little animal through a magnifying glass.

"What do you think, Doc, a C-section?" I suggested scientifically."Oh, very interesting," he murmured. "Mr. And Mrs. Cameron, may I speak toyou privately for a moment?"I gulped, nodding for my son to step outside. "Is Ernie going to be okay?" my wife asked. "Oh, perfectly," the vet assured us. "This lizard is not in labor. In fact,that isn't EVER going to happen . . . Ernie is a boy. You see, Ernie is ayoung male and occasionally, as they come into maturity, like most malespecies, they um . . . Um . . . Masturbate. Just the way he did, lying on his back."

He blushed, glancing at my wife.We were silent, absorbing this."So, Ernie's just . . . Just . . Excited," my wife offered. "Exactly," the vet replied, relieved that we understood. More silence. Then my vicious, cruel wife started to giggle. And giggle. And then even laugh loudly. "What's so funny?" I demanded, knowing, but not believing that the woman I married would commit the upcoming affront to my flawless manliness. Tears were now running down her face. "It's just . . . That . . . I'm picturing you pulling on its . . . its . . . teeny little . . ."She gasped for more air to bellow in laughter once more."That's enough," I warned. We thanked the vet and hurriedly bundled the lizard and our son back into the car. He was glad everything was going to be okay. "I know Ernie's really thankful for what you did, Dad," he told me. "Oh, you have NO idea son ," my wife agreed, collapsing with laughter.
Two lizards: $140.
One cage: $50.
Trip to the vet: $30.
Memory of your husband pulling on a lizard's winkie: Priceless!
Moral of the story:Pay attention in biology class. Lizards lay eggs.

Saturday, June 2, 2007

This Is All My Sister's Fault

This is all my sister's fault...and I am putting the blame squarely on her shoulders.

Yesterday, my sister calmly called me to tell me that she got a flat tire and was getting new ones and how thankful she was that it wasn't can read all about it here. Shortly after she spoke to me, my 'check engine' light and my 'TCS' light both came on in my car...not to mention that the night before, I had had to put air in my left rear tire and then I had to put air in the same tire this morning)

I have an appointment 7am Monday morning to take my car in to see what's wrong. I have a feeling, that I will be spending Tuesday morning at the Big Box Store using the coupon that my sister spoke about while getting 4 new tires.

Just when I am committed to NOT working summer school, I can hear the 'kaching' of the cash registers as they take my credit card. (I know cash registers don't even make a sound when you swipe your card, but I think the 'audio' helps make my point.) I guess this means that the kids and I will be spending a lot of time at the beach and pool this summer (I know, not a bad way to spend the summer), and we'll be eating macaroni and cheese, lots and lots of it.

Of course, miracles do could just be that the two engine lights came on because of a problem with the lights and maybe I just didn't put enough air into the tire and I won't really need new tires, and the leprauchans will feel sorry for me that my sister got to go to Ireland and I didn't so they will show me where the pot of gold is... one can only hope.

See...I can look on the bright side too;~D

Friday, June 1, 2007

Patience Is a Virtue

Thank you everyone for sending such supportive thoughts my way...I will tell you that they really helped me stay calm during the meeting. Bosses Boss Lady "listened" to what I had to say. I calmly (I think) listed the size of my caseload, and presented a case for keeping school #2 and getting rid of school #4, I also explained that school #4 has informed me that I do not have a room to work in for the rest of this school year, and that they have no idea if they will have a room for me to work in next year, and finally, I whipped out (o.k. took out) a letter that the Principal of school #2 wrote about me, stating how outstanding I am, and why the school wants me back.

Bosses Boss Lady said that she understood what I was saying, that she would see what she could do, and that she would get back to me next week. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah ,blah. (that's administrative speak for...yeah right, you think that I will do anything for you?, just please leave me alone, go Then...she gave me a great big hug. (was that a "I'm sorry but I am going to screw you and not change your assignment" hug?...or was that a "I'm sorry but I can't tell you that you're going to get school #2 back right now, but don't worry, you will" hug?). It was hard to tell.

So I still know nothing about my assignment for next year. I'm anticipating that she will take school #3 away from me, leave me with school #4, and try to offer me a school other than #2, at which point, I will definitely put a call into my union. Now, all that's left for me to do is to just wait to hear from her, and be patient (me patient...yeah right!)