CLICK HERE FOR THOUSANDS OF FREE BLOGGER TEMPLATES »

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Crazy People

live here.
We decided that it would be a good idea to strip wallpaper and paint the master bedroom and bathroom during Christmas week. This is because we got 2 feet of snow and we couldn't split wood... The chore we'd been planning for a while now. (I thank the Lord we got 2 feet of snow because if we didn't, I'd still be looking at 1986 blue floral and bow wallpaper.)


Our master bedroom is a whole lot bigger than we thought... Fortunately, our master bath is teeny tiny in comparison...

It took us a whole day to get the wallpaper off the walls - and it came off relatively easily. We washed and rinsed and spackled as we thought we'd paint the room the next day. It took 2 days to paint that room, but it is lovely.

Just as we finished painting the master bedroom, Mr. mentioned that since the bathroom was upside down, too, we may as well do that.  How long could it really take anyway...

The wallpaper in the bathroom was interesting. It was not the quality of that in the bedroom. The top half came off in sheets - I'm sure it's from years of being steamed from the shower. The bottom half - not so much - that came off one itty bitty piece at a time.

We washed those walls and spackled... The next morning, we painted. It took no time at all!  Now we have to put it all back together. I got a new medicine cabinet and am on the hunt for a new "over the toilet" cabinet. For now, we'll use the old one and I'll get new knobs.  Those will be hung this morning so we can begin to put stuff away.  I'm going to paint the sink base in the bathroom -- unless I can convince Mr. that a new one is in order.  (Measurements will be taken and prices will be compared because honestly, the sink is from 1986 and has definitely seen a better day...)

Tomorrow Mr. and Grandpa will be putting the crown molding up in the bedroom. This is only because the bathroom threw up into the bedroom and we need to clean it all up so we can get to the walls to put up the crown!  I will admit to cheating on the crown. I got the corner moldings pre-made... you put them up, measure between, make straight cuts and slap the crown in there.  They aren't cheap, but in the long run, it will save much angst and gnashing of teeth to do it this way.

I've ordered new bedding - we'll see if it stays or goes...  it was on sale and it is in the style that Jackie Davis,  the HGTV designer (and dear friend) told me to get when she gave me the colors for the room. I'm not sure the colors are exactly right - the colors on the monitor are often a wee bit different in person, but I'll know when it arrives.

Pictures? Well, you'll have to wait until it's all done and picked up and dusted...

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Chez Nous



Ladybug Crossing in the snow at dusk.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

As Abraham Lincoln Said...

You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away people's initiative and independence.
You cannot help people permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves.

........Abraham Lincoln



Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!


Merry Christmas from our house to yours!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

How to talk and understand...

Bostonian...

I'm originally from Boston.
This is how we say things - now those of you who know me personally will understand me a little better -- maybe...

Information on Boston and the surrounding area:
There's no school on School Street, no court on Court Street, no dock on Dock Square, no water on Water Street.
Back Bay streets are in alphabetical 'oddah': Arlington, Berkeley, Clarendon, Dartmouth, etc.
So are South Boston streets: A, B, C, D, etc.
If the streets are named after trees, (e.g. Walnut, Chestnut, Cedar), you're on Beacon Hill.
If they're named after poets, you're in Wellesley.
Massachusetts Ave is Mass Ave; Commonwealth Ave is Comm Ave; South Boston is Southie.
The South End is the South End. East Boston is Eastie.
The North End is east of the former West End. The West End and Scollay Square are no more; a guy named Rappaport got rid of them one night. Roxbury is The Burry, Jamaica Plain is J.P.

How to say these Massachusetts city names correctly:
**Say it wrong, be shunned**

Worcester: Wuhsta (or Wistah), Gloucester: Glawsta, Leicester Lesta, Woburn: Wooban, Dedham : Dead-um, Revere: Re-vee-ah, Quincy: Quinzee, Tewksbury: Tooks berry, Leominster: Lemin-sta, Peabody: Pee-ba-dee, Waltham: Walth-ham, Chatham: Chaddum, Samoset: Sam-oh-set or Sum-aw-set but nevah Summer set !
 

Definitions: 
Frappes have ice cream, milkshakes don't. If it is fizzy and flavored, it's tonic. Soda is CLUB SODA. 'Pop' is Dad. When we want Tonic WATER, we will ask for Tonic WATER. The smallest beer is a pint.
 

Scrod is whatever they tell you it is, usually fish. If you paid more than $6/pound, you got scrod.
 

It's not a water fountain; it's a bubblah. It's not a trashcan; it's a barrel.
It's not a spucky, a hero or grinder,...it's a sub.
It's not a shopping cart; it's a carriage. It's not a purse; it's a pocketbook.
They're not franks; they're haht dahgs; Franks are money in Switzahland.
Police don't drive patrol units or black and whites; they drive a 'crooza'. If you take the bus, you’re on the 'looza crooza'.
It's not a rubber band, it's an elastic. It's not a traffic circle; it's a rotary.
'Going to the islands' means Martha's Vineyard & Nantucket.
The Sox = The Red Sox. The C's = The Celtics. The B's = The Bruins.
 

Things not to do: 
Don't pahk your cah in Hahvid Yahd .. they'll tow it to Meffa ( Medford ) or Summerville (Somerville).
Don't sleep on the Common. ( Boston Common)
Don't wear Orange on St. Patrick's Day.
 

Things you should know: 
There are two State Houses, two City Halls, two courthouses, two Hancock buildings (one old, one new for each).
The colored lights on top the old Hancock tell the weather':
'Solid blue, clear view....' 'Flashing blue, clouds due....'
'Solid red, rain ahead.....' lashing red, snow instead....' - (except in summer; flashing red means the Red Sox game was rained out).
 

Most people live here all their life and still don't know what the hell
is going on with this one. Route 128 is also I-95 south. It's also I-93 north at some point. 


The underground train is not a subway. It's the 'T', and it doesn't run all night. (fah-chrys-akes, this ain't Noo Yawk).
Order the 'cold tea' in China Town after 2:00 am - you'll get a kettle full of beer.
 

Bostonians... think that it's their God-given right to cut off someone in traffic.
Bostonians...think that there are only 25 letters in the alphabet (no R's - except in 'idear').
Bostonians...think that three straight days of 90+ temperatures is a heat wave.
Bostonians...refer to six inches of snow as 'dusting.'
Bostonians...always 'bang a left' as soon as the light turns green, and oncoming traffic always expects it.
Bostonians...believe that using your turn signal is a sign of weakness.
Bostonians...think that 63-degree ocean water is warm.
Bostonians...think Rhode Island accents are annoying.
 

Send this to your friends who don't live in Boston (and the ones who did!!)
P.S ...........Don't use your spell checker on this if you send it; you’ ll never get thru it?

Monday, December 21, 2009

That's a lot of snow!

This is Zeb standing in the snow... There is still about 3 or 4 inches packed underneath him...

Yes, he's short, but really... that's a lot of snow!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Snow... snow.... and more snow...

LLB took this yesterday...





That's a lot of snow!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Party in T minus 2.5 days

OMG! The annual Christmas extravaganza is this Saturday.
I am NOT ready... well, I am, but my house is not...  My poor sweet house is strewn with ribbons, wrapping paper, bags, and various types of wrapping shrapnel. My floor needs mopping. The clutter needs decluttering. My disaster of a desk - fortunately, that has doors that I can just close up...
It's not all doom and gloom. There are a couple of bright spots

The dining room is set.
The living room is set.
That's two bright spots... A couple is two, right?
The craft room - where we serve the drinks and desserts --- that's not set... not one bit. Today I'll tackle that. My scrapbooking needs to be put away... or done.. and since I'm out of time.. it will be put away.
I need to vacuum and dust.
I won't be home on Friday to do any of it.
I won't be home this afternoon to do any of it.
It's now or never... Hey - isn't that a song???

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Big News...

LLB made All District Band!!

She auditioned on Saturday.
We arrived at the venue later than we have in years past. She was the last trumpet - #37.
She hung around and waited for her audition time with her friends - they were a little ahead of her, but she laughed and enjoyed their company. I think they helped relax her. Once they went off to audition, she warmed up a little and then played Tetris on her Nintendo.
When she came out, I asked her how she thought she'd done.
She said that she had nailed the etude and most of the scales. She thought she did okay on the sightreading - she said she had a little bit of a rough start, but had it down by the end of the piece -- oh and she thought it might have been a Mozart piece.
She still didn't think she'd be one of the 12 chosen. After all, she is just a freshman...
She found out yesterday that she'd made it.
She told me she was jumping up and down in the hallway and that she dropped all of her stuff so she could hug the two trumpets that told her she'd made it. Those two boys will never be the same!!
She's either #9 or #11. Either way it's terrific!!

AND

She got second place for the Hero paper she wrote and narrated for an English competition.

She had a banner day.

AND

She had a run-in with her History teacher. It seems the teacher threw a notebook at a fellow student. She went toe to toe with the woman. You don't throw things at students -- ever.  When LLB confronted her, the teacher told her that she could do whatever she wanted because the notebook was incomplete. LLB just looked at her - with "that look".  The teacher came and found her later to apologize.  I am sure the woman is afraid LLB will tell me what happened and that I'll turn her in. Too bad, Lady.. She  did, and I will... later today.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Greenworks Laundry

I was asked to try out the Greenworks Laundry Detergent (the one with the green cap) and Stain Remover.
I'm a Tide girl... I grew up with my mom using Tide. I have always used Tide. 
It would take a lot for me to change my ways.
I have been converted.
I LOVE this Greenworks Laundry Detergent.
I used this stuff on everything from undies to towels to jeans to sweaters.
My whites are white. My colors are bright. And the scent is simply divine!
The best part? You don't need to use a lot - just a little bit goes a long way.
I do over 10 loads of laundry a week and that little bottle is still going. I don't think I've even used half of it yet!
I also used the stain remover and it worked on the basics... except for red clay - but nothing works on red clay. 

So - try it. You'll love it!

"I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Clorox Green Works and received a bottle of Green Works Natural Detergent and Stain Remover to facilitate my review and a $20 thank-you gift certificate."

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Snow


This was the scene out the back door on Saturday morning...
This has not been photoshopped, edited, or manipulated in any way.
I did not turn it black and white. This is just the way it was...
And it was awesome!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

20 and Counting

20 years ago today I married my best friend.
It was a cold December day. I had class in the morning - my last graduate class and the teacher made me go. I wanted snow (yes, I was young and stupid). I got a few flakes as I walked into the church - my blessing from heaven I called it.
My memories of that day are few and far between - I remember standing at the altar thinking that I was going to remember all of it... that's pretty much it except for the "I do", the kiss, and the ring getting stuck half way up Mr.'s finger... 
Our pictures are hysterical!  I was so vain - I got contacts for the day -- blue ones to make my eyes look bluer - heaven forbid my glasses "date" the picture!  There's the one of me walking up the aisle with my dad - I had the biggest smile on my face.  Mr. looked dapper (and a wee bit nervous) in his tux.  Then there's the minister -- he looked like he smelled something bad in every single picture - neither of us farted -- honest!
Our reception at The Andover Inn was a blast! We danced. We ate. The men made a pyramid with Mr. at the top. I have the picture to prove that stunt, too. Our families had a marvelous time.
We honeymooned at Stowe - our room had no heat during the coldest week of the year. Our champagne froze, as did we. We actually went to Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream to warm up!
Now, 20 years later we've got 2 kids in high school, a house in the country, and a life we love.
Would I do it all again?
You bet!
Happy Anniversary, Mr. Bug.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

'Tis the Season

We've been busy out here at The Crossing.

We had snow over the weekend and that eliminated our internet connection - the dish fills with snow and we've got no internet... they don't tell you about that when you sign up for satellite service. Without internet, there's no shopping, no email, no blogging, no facebook....  Mr. and I braved the snow to pick up my new glasses on Saturday. I'm still not sure I like them - they are progressive lenses and they make me a tad nauseous.  I've been told I'll get used to it.

I rang bells on Sunday - all day - as in 5 hours... And yes, my hands are sore, thankyouverymuch.
 If you want the real scoop on the evening concert, go on over to the other place I write, and I'll fill you in. Some of it was good, but some of it was more than annoying.

Yesterday I went on a field trip with LLB. We went to see the Terracotta Warriors at the National Geographic Museum. It was terrific! We enjoyed seeing them, but felt that the time away from school wasn't worth the trip as the exhibit is relatively small.  (I would have preferred that the teacher recommend that the kids see them with their families - we would have taken LLB and #1 in to see them and then stayed to see the rest of the museum.)  If the Terracotta Warriors come to your local museum, definitely go see them. 

Today I'm going to wrap up some goodies that arrived yesterday. I'm also going to do some laundry, pick up my house, and take Mini Kitty and Zeb to the vet. Getting the cat into the carrier is always an adventure... An adventure that only the bravest can attempt - umm... that would be me.  I have bandaids, peroxide, and leather gloves at the ready.  The appointment is at 2:30. I'll start to put her in the carrier at 1 - that should give me enough time to get her in the carrier, clean my wounds, take another shower, and get there. Wish me luck. I'm going to need it.

Friday, December 04, 2009

It's like this...

It's Merry Christmas - not happy holidays.
It's a Christmas tree, not a holiday tree, a Hanukkah tree, or even a Kwanzaa tree...
I'm not shopping for holiday presents. I'm shopping for Christmas presents.
If you don't celebrate my holiday, I'm fine with that, but 'tis the season, you know? If you don't celebrate Christmas but you shop the Christmas sales, that's absolutely terrific, but please realize that without my holiday, you wouldn't be gettin' these sale prices.

So, when I go into a store that has Christmas trees for sale. I'd like them labeled as such.
Ditto for the ornaments to go on said trees.
The stockings that are hung - those are Christmas stockings... it's okay to call them what they are.

Like it or not, it's the Christmas season.
So...
Don't tell me to have a happy holiday...
It's "Merry Christmas!"... dammit.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Soldier Shopping

My LLB signed up to shop for gifts for a soldier for Christmas. Her soldier has become a really important person to her. He is on the front lines and she is worried about him. (I wish we had a name - all we have is a number...)

When I asked her what her soldier needed, she told me to get wool socks to keep his feet warm. That was first on her list.  Then she told me to get him things that would make his box feel like a real present. So that's what we did. Her soldier will receive a real Christmas stocking filled to the brim with goodies - the necessary like toothpaste and toothbrushes - and the not so necessary like candy and puzzles.

Shopping for her soldier was a challenge. Nothing seemed good enough. We wanted the best of the best for this person. It was almost surreal. How do you fill a box with all the love and thanks you feel for the required minimal amount of cash?  You don't. We gave up trying to do that after the first 5 minutes! We filled the box with what we'd send to our own... because, someday, someone might be shopping like this for my kids.

So, if you know the soldier who gets the stocking - please tell him LLB sent it.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

The Elf

I am the Christmas Elf at our house.

I do the decorating - although this year I actually had help with the tree and I almost fainted from the shock! Usually they help me for 5 min. and disappear. This year they stayed and decorated and laughed and giggled for over an hour until the tree was done. And I loved every second of it - even though I've spent another 2 hours primping the tree without their knowledge. (Ornaments need to hang, not sit on the branches.) Some things have to be done right, you know?

I do the shopping.
I'm the crazy person out at 5am on Black Friday.
I'm the one who is up at all hours surfing the internet for bargains.
For me, it's the thrill of the hunt...  I take pride in finding what they want at a price I'm willing to pay.
(Mr. only has to shop for me and I even tell him what I want and where to get it at the best price.)

I do the wrapping.
All of it.
I should train them, but really... I like to wrap.
This year I decided to beautify my presents with real bows made with real ribbon that I purchased at a real bargain after Christmas last year.  (We haven't had presents with ribbon in years.  I used to use curling ribbon, but the cats used it as dental floss. By the time Christmas day rolled around, it was quite disgusting and no one wanted to touch the ribbons to open the gifts. This is not exactly the response you want on Christmas morning. Trust me...)

I usually wrap gifts on our island in the kitchen. It's warm with the fire going, and it's a large expanse on which to spread out the paper, tape, and other wrapping goodies.  Mr. sits and works on his computer on a small corner of the island while I wrap.  We keep each other company and he gets a sneak peek at the kids' gifts.

I was in the midst of wrapping when Mr. had a realization:
Christmas is easy when you have an Elf in the family.

I grinned.
Yes, Dear, it is.

He is a very lucky man.
And I am one appreciated Elf.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Eyes..

I guess I have a "look" that makes me appear "mean".
Now I know that I can give a look that will melt ice and freeze fire. If you cross me, you'll be on the receiving end of that... It's a classic and I learned it from my mother. :-)
But that's not what we're talking about.

The women in my family have piercing blue eyes. We are watchers. We take it all in. We aren't fake or phony. We just are. We tell it like it is.
Maybe that combined with the piercing blue eyes makes us look mean scary?

What do you think? Do these eyes look mean?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Happy Birthday, Mr. Chairman

We have this friend who is afraid he'll do something stupid and show up on my blog.  So, since it's his birthday, I thought I'd write about him. It's the least I can do, right?

DT, or Mr. Chairman as I like to call him, has a big heart and is one of the hardest workers I know. He and my Mr. spend most of the fall marching season hauling band crap together.  He'll work at his job all day and then show up to volunteer at a football game, stay late to help pack the truck for a band trip early in the morning, and then show up before dawn to haul that equipment to the competition. He smiles and has a great time - he has the best attitude and some of the funniest jokes we've ever heard...
Mr. Chairman is as talented as he is funny.  He rings handbells, plays any brass instrument, and can even plunk out a tune or three on the piano.  He has played trombone at our Christmas parties, brought his baritone to the basketball games, and even hopped in to play at a Jazz Concert when one of the kids got sick.  He is a neat guy and dear friend of the family.  

So, please wish Mr. Chairman a Happy Birthday!  And if it turns out he does something funny or stupid, I'll fill you all in...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Hickory Farms


This arrived in the mail for us to sample last week. It is gorgeous!!!

When we opened the box, we were blown away by the selections. We immediately thought, "What a great gift for a family!"
This is called The Hickory Farms Storybook Gift Set. It comes with a summer sausage, a block of cheese, a small box of crackers, a cookie sampler, a plate with Mickey on it, and Mickey's Night Before Christmas hardcover book.
We thought the family could open this gift Christmas Eve. They could have some family time reading the book while chowing down on the edibles in the box. We also thought that if the family didn't have a special "cookies for Santa" plate, that this one could definitely serve the purpose - and with the cookies included in the package, no baking is necessary.
The package came exactly as you see it above except that the book comes wrapped in white butcher paper to protect it. The top layer of cookies were a little crumbled, but you can't eat them in once piece anyway, so it was fine with us. Everything in the box was absolutely delicious.  The crackers were yummy and intact. The cheese was phenomenal. The summer sausage was delectable. I can't say enough good things about this gift set.
I am a collector of children's Christmas books, so this gift set is right up my alley.  I'm going to add the book to the Christmas basket today when I set it out for the season.
If you need a different kind of gift, please go to Hickory Farms and check out the other yummies they have. There are fruit baskets, sausage and cheese boxes, petit fours - my all time favorite, and more. If you want to ship to your favorite soldier, APO/FPO shipping is free. You certainly can't beat that and you know it will be well received - Hickory Farms is the best!
So if you are looking for a terrific gift to give to friends - this is it!

"I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Hickory Farms and received a Hickory Farms gift basket to facilitate my review."

Monday, November 23, 2009

Julie...

My dear friend Julie - the one I've known since we were in elementary school... the one with one leg who was an Olympian - her - Anyway, she was hired away from a very good job very close to home to work at a prosthetics company in New Hampshire over 45 minutes from her house. She did not apply for the job. They called her. They begged and pleaded with her to take this job.  Before she took the position she told them that she knew dental insurance, not prosthetics and that she'd need time to learn. They told her they'd give her 6 months and then they'd review her and give her a raise.   She also told them that she needed a secure job because she's a single mom with a mortgage.  "Fear not", they said... "We want you to retire here".
Julie loved this job. She was in her element. She learned quickly. She felt at home.

She was there exactly 6 weeks. They laid her off on Friday because they said that they didn't have enough work to keep her busy. (Bunch of bold faced liars!) This company does many arms and legs for the wounded soldiers coming back from war - not to mention the steady stream of clients they get nationwide and around the world. They are known as the best of the best. (If the owner doesn't make this right, I'll be spewing their company name all over the internet.) Did I mention that Julie wears one of their prosthetic legs?  Who lays off someone who can relate to patients like no other? Julie knows what it is like to be without a limb - those who make limbs think they know, but they do not. Only those who have lost limbs can know. She was hired to be a patient advocate - and she is the best. She got Medicaid and Medicare to pay when no one else could - in less than 6 weeks. (Beat that, baby!)
The supervisor told Julie that she was sorry. (Excuse me, but that's a crock...  We all know that the supervisor didn't like it that the owner hired her.) Before Julie left, she told the supervisor - who is also the owner's wife - exactly what needed to be done with each of the 25 files on her desk as well as the status of the closed files that needed to be put up. The woman was totally shocked because she's a lousy boss who was too wrapped up in herself to see the big picture. She had no idea that Julie had done that much work in such a short time.  By the way - Julie's work is flawless. The insurance companies and the government don't pay out if there are mistakes in paperwork...  That supervisor? She's a moron who just laid off the best thing that ever happened to that place.
So - if any of you know of a dental office, prosthetics office, or medical establishment - in Massachusetts, or southern New Hampshire in need of an excellent worker, please let me know. I've got an terrific employee for you. She can't go back to her old job, because they replaced her...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

May the Force Be With You...

As it was with us...

R & I are definitely shoe-ins for the "Mother of the Year Award".   We took the kids to see Star Wars in Concert last night - in Baltimore - as in Maryland - as in 2 hours from home. 

The evening started off innocently enough - get the kids from swimming and head out.
We stopped at the drive thru for a quick bite, distributed the loot and began our drive.
Within moments we were stopped on the road because of an accident up ahead. I was a little freaked out because #1 was ahead of us - enough ahead of us to be mixed up in that mess we couldn't see. I called home. Mr. was out walking Zeb and told me that #1 had not yet arrived. We hung up. 15 minutes later I called back. #1 was walking in the door. Crisis averted. Blessing #1 of the evening. All was well and we were moving at a good clip.

As we hit Route 495, the backup started... we crept along at 10mph - I think I'm being generous with that speed.  Our arrival time on the GPS was clicking up towards the starting time of the concert. We did not panic.
We are moms. We can handle anything!
We even had a small potty crisis, but we managed. We just kept going. At the 495/270 split, we were blessed with moving traffic - for a short few miles. Then we were back to stop and go. Once on 95N, things opened up. The traffic gods smiled upon us and we were cruisin'.


We were going to be later than expected, so I asked if I should call the band director and have him put our tix at Will Call. R said that would probably be a good idea. I dialed.
Hi, it's Ladybug. Do you think you could put our tix at will call?
I don't have your tix. I gave them to LLB and HP and told them to put them in a safe place.
LLB has the tix?
Umm.. yup.

From the back seat we heard two gasps. 
OMG, Mom... I forgot the tix in my locker.
Yeah. Mine are there, too.

I said into the phone: She forgot them in her locker. Do you think they will help us?
Gee. I dunno. Good luck.
And he clicked off.

Around here, this is what we call an "awshit moment".

R and I sighed. The kids felt awful.  LLB was very close to tears.
R and I discussed the sanity of handing tickets to 9th graders - especially when we'd both been at school in his presence at a meeting the night before.

I called back. He gave us the section, rows, and seat numbers and wished us luck.

We held our collective breaths, said a few prayers, and discussed with the children re-payment of the admission price should we have to purchase more tix. They could virtually see their money flying out of their piggy banks, but they didn't complain.

R's Mr. happened to call at this point, so he was filled in on our dilemma. He said something like, "You're going to have to talk your way in. You can do it!"(Hey, we're moms - we can do anything, right?")

At one point LLB said, "Well, this way we'll have the tickets for the scrapbook." We all giggled. She had a point...

We arrived in Baltimore - time was tight... very tight.
We parked in the Sheraton garage - they were close and cheap.

We walked over to the 1st Mariner Center.  We headed for the Will Call counter.
I had my band jacket and band shirt on. (This certainly helps when you are claiming to be "with the band").
I explained our plight to the agent at the window.
He told me to hang on. He headed out back.
We told the children to cross their fingers and to start praying - hard!

The man came back. He started to fill out a pass and was called away. We tried to remain calm. He returned, and finished filling out the pass.  He handed it through the window and told us to enjoy the show.
We thanked him profusely and heaved a huge sigh of relief.
Yet another blessing!

We headed to our seats in the nosebleed section.  Up the stairs...
R had to use the facilities, so we stopped to wait just outside the section door. While we were there, I showed my pass to one of the 1st Mariner Center Staff. She told me she'd been looking for us, that we'd been relocated, handed me 4 tix, and told me the rest of the band was there.

R came out of the bathroom and I literally shoved a ticket in her face. Her eyes lit up.  "How did this happen?" I quickly explained. I'm not sure she heard or understood a word I said, but the implication was that we had real tickets! 
Yes, people - another blessing in less than 5 minutes!

We flew down the stairs to our much better seats.
There are 2 doors to each section. We walked in the door to the left - amazingly it was the correct door! Our seats were right on the end. We missed exactly 30 seconds of the show.

R texted her Mr. "we're in!"

The show was amazing -  the music, the lights, the screen - everything! I thoroughly enjoyed watching the conductor. He conducted the symphony and the choir. Amazing!!

The ride home was blissfully uneventful.
We decided that this was definitely an adventure for the scrapbook... I just wish we had some pictures to go with it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

How not to start a Christmas list...

We had another early morning with Zeb. 
Mr. decided to head off to work early since he was up. He hadn't picked his clothes for the day last night because he expected to be getting dressed in the daylight.  Socks all look the same in the dark.  Mr. is pretty funny about his socks - they have to match what he's wearing - unlike myself... if mine match each other it's a good day.  The light from the closet is not on the same side of the room as his dresser.  He must have made 20 trips back and forth between the light and the dresser to see what color socks he had in his hand. 
The floor in our room is a little "springy" and Mr. walks "hard". The antique lamp on the dresser rattles when you walk.  20 trips back and forth across the bedroom became almost hysterically funny to me.
From under the covers, I said, "Turn on the light."
"No, I found them. I think I need to ask Santa for more blue socks."
"Okay. I'll make a note of that."

Monday, November 16, 2009

Geez Louise!

It's Monday?
Where do the weekends go?

I have my review at the church where I direct my handbell choir in a little while.  Then I have to teach my school kids - hopefully the flu is almost out of that school. I don't like to breathe germy air, you know?  Then I have my church handbell group - unless they fire me this morning, which is unlikely...

I'm tired just thinking about all of that.  But it's really fun exhausting stuff!

The kids start their swim season today. I love swim season for two reasons:
1. It's short.  We're done by the end of January and we've got Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks in there for breathing room.
2. The kids are tired, go to bed early, and sleep really well.  This allows me easier access to the TV remote in the evenings. (It's the little things...)

Okay - I'd best get my rear in gear...
Wish me luck!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Phew! That was fast!

Wow! I can't believe it's Sunday and that I'm home, somewhat rested, and here chatting with all of you.

The bell fest went off quite well. The headmaster from the school decided to come. (I think the fact that he had choice of vomit or handbells may have had a little something to do with his presence, but I'm not fussy. Whatever got him to the festival is fine with me.) His just being there solved a multitude of problems. I didn't have to worry one bit about behavior, any chaperoning issues, or anything. I told him how much I appreciated his presence. I felt a giant weight come off of my shoulders when I saw him walking towards my registration table. What a blessing!!!

The other teacher did show up - sometime late Friday. That's all I'm going to say on that.

As for my children and their competition. I got a call on Saturday morning upon their arrival at the competition field. It was pouring rain. Why should this week be any different than the last 3? LOL!  At noon I got another weather update - it was warm and cloudy, but not rainy. The kids were eating and then they were going to change into their uniforms.
That's the last I heard from them until 4:30 or so...
Mr. called. It did not rain. They marched and played very very well. Their score - 92.75!!! Wow! That's another school record!!!
Their place?
First!
The kids were sooo excited! They beat out 17 other bands. They got their collective act together and cranked it up. I am so glad.
It's still not about winning - although it's nice that their hard work is recognized. It's about working together and having fun.
They did just that on Saturday.

Microsoft Office Live

I was asked to try out this new Microsoft Office Live.
I'm usually a little leery of stuff like this, but I thought I'd try it.
OMG! This thing is terrific and it's FREE!

Microsoft Office Live is a way to create and share documents without carrying flash drives. You create your documents online and they save them for you. You can share with whomever you choose, and you can access the documents from any computer. How many times have I wished I could access a document that was on my computer at home! No more!!!


Sign up for your FREE workspace to:
  • Access and share files from anywhere
  • Work with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • 5GB of free online storage (thousands of Office documents)
  • Share password-protected documents—you control who views and edits
  • Use for work, home, and school











I used it to create the flyer, invitation, and guest list for our annual Christmas Party. I can then share it with Gram over the internet. She can check it all out, change what mistakes she sees, and not even leave her desk. She doesn't have to download anything - it's all right there on the internet. How cool is that???  The best part is that it is Word, PowerPoint and Excel documents so there is no learning curve. Everything is the same as she is used to seeing. We like to keep it simple here at The Crossing...


You basically download Microsoft Office Live to your desktop and then you can edit all you want!

They have many templates to choose from and have thought of everything! 

There is another option: Microsoft Office Live Small Business. You can create your own website in minutes! It's fast and easy. They've thought of everything!

So - interested? You should be. Go try it!
It's awesome!

“I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Microsoft Office Live. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.”

Friday, November 13, 2009

Ring my bell...

I'm off to the discoveRing bell  festival in Richmond. Stop by and say hi if you're there. I'm the one with the camera - in case you need to find me.

My school bells will be there. My kids are excited, somewhat prepared, and ready for a fun weekend.  I can only hope that the other teacher (who I did not recommend to be hired) actually shows up and takes responsibility for the kids. Because I'm working the event on the other side, I cannot "be the teacher".  There's obviously more to the story, but since I'm supposed to be all sweetness and light over here, I won't get into it. I am worried - very worried.

My own children are headed to their final Marching Band Competition in Allentown this weekend. I'm heartbroken that I can't see them march and take their pictures.  Alas, the other parents will have to step up and do it for me.  Mr. is going to be with them, but the camera will be with me...  I have my cell phone charged so they can tell me how they are doing, how they placed, and any other little tidbit they want to share. I hate not being there with them.

So - if you need me, I'll be back tomorrow.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Wash Day Funny

Yesterday I was collecting the dirty laundry. I was sorting colors and whites in our room. As I stood up, I looked up at the window in our bedroom and noticed something hanging from the curtain rod.
Could it be?
Nah!
Yup - a pair of men's briefs...
It struck me funny...
I left them there.
This morning Mr. was getting ready for work.
I asked, "Hey, look up at the curtain rod. How did those get up there?"
"What?" He laughed when he saw them.

As he took them down he said, "It's a good thing those aren't lace panties, or people might talk..."

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Lickin' it...

Mr. called me the other day and mentioned that his Blackberry trackball wasn't working.
I told him how I clean the trackball on my mouse - I get a paper towel damp with glass cleaner and then roll it over the trackball. It works every time. I told him to try it.

I got this email back from him:
BTW, it worked!!  I licked my BB (blackberry) trackball and it works again!

He said it tastes like cat food.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

3am

Is not a time I like to be woken up - ever.
Zeb has woken me up 2 nights in a row at 3am.  The first night he ran out and did a giant poopy. I understand that and had a feeling it might happen based on what he scarfed down shortly before bed time. But, last night - there was no reason to be getting me out of bed at 3am.

So, I went and checked him. He was fine. I went back to bed.
Zeb woofed some more and Mr. - the big softie - got up to let him out.

The cats know that if I'm up at 3am, they'd best be sweet, purr a lot, and not beg for food. Alas, they know that Mr. will feed them at any hour. I heard the clink of dry food in their bowl at 3:05am. 

If these animals think that this is going to become a habit - they are in for a rude awakening. Mr. just informed me that tonight he's putting in his earplugs and closing the bedroom door.

Monday, November 09, 2009

More Fall...

LLB has been absconding with my camera. She took these.


She's got an amazing eye...



See what I mean?

Yup... the kid is amazing.

Zeb - the wonder dog!


LLB took this picture, too!

I took these - much to Zeb's dismay:

His expression says, "Mom... I don't like you to take my picture with that thing. It's scary!"





He is so brave.... NOT! He doesn't like the camera, so he ran in here:


See - so brave he'll actually peek at the camera:

His favorite hiding place - behind the toilet... Silly dog!

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Fall at Ladybug Crossing


This is the view out my back door... Truly amazing.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Random Dozen

1. It's early morning, about 2:00AM, and you're driving home. You come to a red light and sit there. There is no one in sight for miles around. Do you wait it out or run the light? I wait... if I run it, I will get caught... It's just the way my life is.

2. If you had the chance to re-do the last 24 hours, would you change anything? no.

3. When you reply to someone's comment on your blog, do you reply in your comments or go to her blog and comment? Depends.

4. Your favorite Disney movie is: Gee... I dunno... I like most of them...

5. Do you recycle? some.

6. Games of strategy or games of chance? strategy.

7. Do you have any recurring dreams? Not usually.

8. What did you learn from your first real job? People are afraid of the dentist.

9. Do you buy or borrow most books? Borrow from the library.

10. What fashion trend of the past did you say you'd never wear again but did? I never thought of myself as fashionable, so I have no idea.

11. When do you start Christmas shopping? I've already started. Started Dec. 26th last year.

12. Have you ever been so happy that you literally jumped up and down for a few seconds? If so, what was the occasion? Yes... I do it all the time in bell class when they finally get something they've been working on really hard and it finally comes together. They think I'm a weirdo.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

You know...


the weather is getting cold when you go to shave your legs and decide a lawn mower would have been a more appropriate tool...

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Voting Day

Today is voting day.
Please go vote - but only if you've done your research...

Monday, November 02, 2009

Spirit??

We were on a band competition trip this past weekend. The kids marched better than they ever have. They played really well - the music was terrific! The kids came off the field proud of what they accomplished.

We stayed for the awards ceremony later that evening. Our two drum majors were on the field to receive the trophy. The kids got second place, but scored 5 points higher than last week - which is unbelievable!!  They also got the award for best music! This is nothing to sneeze at.  When they called our school's name, the kids went crazy - They hooted and hollered and cheered!

When the drum majors got back to the bus, they were upset and wouldn't smile. They wanted first place - who doesn't? They refused to smile for the picture.  I can't submit two puss faces with a trophy to the paper.  The Assistant Director gave them a quick pep talk, but by then, it was too late. They refused to bring the trophy onto the bus and handed it to the Color Guard Coach. Later, after they had changed, there were tears.

In my world, there is nothing wrong with 2nd place. Their Band Director brings them to these competitions for them to learn - not to walk away with first place.  He really and truly doesn't care if they win or lose, but that they work as a team, have fun, and make music together.  The bands are judged - scores are given based on someone's opinion.  It's the luck of the draw really...  So, today they liked someone else (one point better) - so be it.  I was a bit disappointed in the DM's...  If you aren't proud of what your team accomplished - no matter how you are judged - your priorities are messed up -- and you shouldn't be wearing that red plume.

I can honestly say that my DM was never ever disappointed in our efforts. We didn't compete, but we traveled with the football team and played the show every week for 10 weeks - some schools we played had bands 3 times the size of ours and could literally blow us off the field.  He told us we were the best band even when we knew we weren't. He told us our music was beautiful even when we knew we'd messed up. He was our biggest cheerleader... and we believed every word he said.

They have one more competition in 2 weeks. I can't go to that one, as I'll be doing handbell stuff.  I certainly hope the DM's pull it together and decide that, no matter how they place, the kids on the field have done their very best.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Wanted: House Elf

My house is upside down - 2 teenagers wreak havoc on my house - especially when they have half days like they did yesterday...  They don't mean to make a mess, they just do...  I need time to get it picked up - but there's little time today...
Yikes!  I need a house elf! 

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Uniforms, etc.

Today my goal is to get to the cleaners and pick up the band uniforms - if they are done.  If they aren't done, I've got to resort to plan b which has yet to be drawn up.

Once we have the uniforms, we need to put them all back together and have them ready to be loaded on the bus on Saturday... This doesn't take all that long, but it does take time.  I'm more than fortunate to have a BFF who will help me do this. She is a godsend, because getting them to the cleaners is easy, but getting them all back together and ready for the kids is the hard part. 

I also have to be at the private school where I teach to go over the chimes - it seems we are sending a few back for repair or replacement. They need to go. For example: the clapper head flies across the room when you play the A5... it's really quite entertaining!

Tomorrow I'm subbing for middle school strings. I have no idea what wire instruments are all about, but I can count to 4, so we're good.  She asked me if I'd be willing to make them play... LOL! Of course! I also have to help Mr. H with a spreadsheet I made for him last year. He says there are no formulas - I think he may have blown them away... Fortunately, for him I am a spreadsheet master! I can create formulas in my sleep! Bwahahaha!!!

Tonight we have bell rehearsal. Last night while we were chatting at swimming, R reminded me that we are playing this Sunday - we have competition on Saturday in Salem - that's far! And we won't be home until the wee hours of Sunday morning. This is when R and I are glad that the music we've been assigned to play isn't overly complicated... LLB, on the other hand, plays 4 in hand and needs to be focused.  I wonder if the 4 of us who are affected can play with our eyes closed... We'll find out on Sunday!

Mini Kitty just had a humongous tick on her. I took it off. I may just hurl... eeeewww!!!

On that note... have a lovely day... I'm off to shudder now...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Disney on Ice


We went to see Disney on Ice last week - a big thanks to Mom Central and Feld Entertainment. It was a terrific evening out.

We arrived and found our seats - they were pretty high up, but we could see everything just fine.  It was not until the next day that we realized that we'd gone 5 rows too far, but it all worked out. We were virtually alone up there - no one was coughing or sneezing behind us. We're not totally germ-phobic, but right now, we're all so busy that none of us can afford to get sick.


There were two young mothers and their children in front of us. Their kids were little - about 3 or 4 years old. They were well behaved and were enjoying the show. As soon as Ariel came out, one of the mothers got all excited, said very loudly, "Oh, it's Ariel!!", and started dancing in her seat. Those two little kids gave her a look and then promptly pretended that they didn't know her. It was hysterical! Isn't it usually the other way around?  I wish I could have gotten a picture of the whole thing, but I was too busy laughing!


There was enough Mickey and Minnie to keep the younger set entertained.
The skating was terrific - we still don't know how they skate with those costumes on!  Speaking of costumes - they were amazing! Check out this Troll Doll from Toy Story:



The skaters must have done 5 or 6 costume changes... They even had skate covers for the skates that made their feet look like they had shoes or sandals on. See? Look at the shoes:


We are still in awe over the costumes... They were that gorgeous!

So - if you have a chance to go to Disney on Ice - Do it! You'll be glad you did.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Life

is good. And life is busy...

Today, though, I have a little break because I don't have to teach my handbell class. It's parent/teacher meetings or something like that. I am considering returning to my toasty warm bed for another hour or two of much needed sleep.

My desk is a disaster - and I would like you to know that most of the mess isn't mine. It belongs to my children who have been doing homework here.  I need a house elf...

The cookbook needs to be submitted today. I need one signature and then I can check that little job off my list. Hopefully, I'll get that tonight at pickup.  The recipes are phenomenal. I can't wait to try some of them - and I don't cook!!  If you want a copy of the cookbook, please let me know!  They are $5 and support the band. Any pre-orders are gladly accepted...

We only have a couple more weeks of marching season left. Swimming starts right after that, but that's only for an hour after school... We'll gain some much needed time at home - time for homework, time to get some bedrooms cleaned up, and time to be home as a family.

Tonight I have bells. I get to tell them how proud I am of each and every one of them for ringing so beautifully yesterday. They rang the piece perfectly. I got goosebumps...  I still get goosebumps when I think about it... 

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Another Year

My #1 turned 17 yesterday. The kids had a band competition, so we brought birthday cake for their dessert to celebrate. He enjoyed his very long day very much... 

It was a rainy - as in pouring rain - day, but by the time they walked onto the field, the weather had cleared.  (Unfortunately, the kids had unloaded the buses in the rain and were more than a little bit damp. The only saving grace was that it was a warm rain and not a cold rain.)

I got him an "airgram" that was announced over the loudspeaker before the band went on. He told me I could say anything I wanted... (silly boy!) I had them say: #1, Happy Birthday! Mommy loves you.  (That got an awww from the crowd.)

They scored higher than they ever have, they had 6 or 7 kids missing, and they did it with just one drum major! He had a good day with his friends. It was a little soggy, but he'll never forget it. He enjoyed every single minute of it.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Packer - thy name is Mud.

I went to C*stc* today to get 3 cakes and a bunch of other stuff on our list. The main reason I went was to get 2 cakes for #1's birthday celebration at the competition tomorrow and 1 cake because the Bishop is coming to our church to confirm two people.  The cake for the Bishop's reception needs to be "just so", you know?  The writing on the cake had to say what it had to say because there are rules, you know? Anyway... I get to the store. I head for the bakery. They have the birthday cakes which I promptly put on that shelf underneath the cart.  I got the church cake and asked them to write the words. They did a beautiful job - it's fall colors. The words are a lovely shade of autumn red... It is "just so".
I very carefully load the cart with all my other goodies during my jaunt up and down the aisles. I am intense about this cake... Nothing can touch the box. There can be nothing but soft items near the box... I'm a bit anal about this cake. I get to the checkout and put all my stuff up on the belt. I put the cake on LAST.  (this is a very important sentence... I put it on LAST!!! Dead. LAST.)
I pay the lady and go to take my cart which the "packer" has packed.
MY CAKE for the BISHOP's RECEPTION IS UNDER the 3 POUNDS of chips.
He RUINED my cake! He SMOOSHED my cake!!
I was so upset!!
They told me that they would replace it or fix it. As I was talking to the register manager, one of the other boxes the packer packed slid off and onto the floor.
My stuff went in every direction... It was like a scene from a bad comedy...
Could this get any worse? or any more surreal?
I took my cake and walked toward the bakery. I figured they'd at least commiserate.
When I arrived at the bakery, the lady remembered me.
"What happened?"
"They ruined my cake!!!"
"Who? The packers?"
"Yes! He smooshed it!!! He put a huge bag of chips on top of it!"
"Don't worry - we'll fix it. And, we'll deal with him!" Her eyes turned into little slits and her upper lip twitched. I'm sure Mr. Packer will be wishing he'd paid more attention in packer training class...
As she took my wounded cake back to the decorator she told each and every person working in the bakery about the incompetence of Mr. Packer...
Yes, Mr. Packer... thy name is mud in the bakery. Those ladies in the bakery who work really hard to make beautiful creations for your customers - they aren't too thrilled with you...
She brought back my cake - as good as new.
I made it home without incident.
The cake is currently in my fridge - top shelf - all by itself.
If anyone even considers breathing near it, there will be consequences...

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Parents...

I teach at a school with a small middle school bell program. I have kids in there with all kinds of learning issues - one who can't track, one who can't hear, one who is ADD... the list goes on. And there are only 9 in my class.
I have a bell student who will NOT ring. She stands there. If I go over and point, she will move the bell a little bit, but no sound comes out. I told her yesterday that her goal for the day was to ring loud enough for me to hear.  She did a little better. Believe me I don't care if there is a wrong note. I'd rather have something than nothing. My attitude is that if you TRY to ring, but you miss half your notes, it doesn't matter.  But she won't try. She just stands there. It's beyond frustrating.
I emailed the mom to find out if she had an IEP or if I was missing something. It turns out that the child has never ever seen a note. Okay then. Well, now I know what I'm working with.
The mother is totally freaking and wants her out of my class. She's afraid the child will be singled out. Can you say "over reacting"?  The other class is full of 6th grade boys. Like she'd be happy in there??? NOT!!  Besides, they are not graded on how well they play. They are graded on if they try. All I am asking is that this kid try.
I have asked the mom to leave her in the class and let me teach her.
I'm waiting for a response.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Ever have...



One of those days??

Listerine Oral Care Challenge


So this arrived in the mail and started our Listerine Oral Care Challenge. We doled out the loot and everyone has been brushing and flossing and swishing like crazy.

It comes down to this: They like the toothbrushes. They like the mouthwash. They don't like the smart rinse so much because it shows what they missed... Mr. loves the Total Care mouthwash. It has great flavor and isn't too spicy.  The kids are using the Cool Blue - they like the bubble gum flavor.  It's not my thing, but it's what they like.  The Reach flosser things are great! You can floss and not leave all that gooey floss all over the bathroom. There is something to be said for that! 

The kit came with charts and stickers, but my kids - now high school students - are past that, so we skipped that part. If you have younger kids, definitely consider the sticker charts.   My kids thought that if they were younger, that would have been great.

If you and yours want to take the Listerine Oral Care Challenge, just click Listerine or Listerine Kids.  Once you get there, take the time to check out the websites! They are terrific. The Listerine Kids web site is full of excellent information and tips for keeping your kids' mouths healthy and clean at any age.  Oh, by the way, if you need more incentive - Listerine Kids also has $1 off coupon for their products. Saving and brushing go a long way!!

"I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Listerine and Reach and received Listerine and Reach products for the Oral Care Challenge and a gift certificate to thank me for taking the time to participate."

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

He's Metro-sexual Like That...

I've been married to Mr. almost 20 years. There is very little that surprises me anymore. This weekend he woke up and declared that he had an ear hair that was poking him all night.
My response was: Blink... blink... (The crickets were chirping, too.)
LB, you've got to find that hair and clip it off.
I yessed him and figured once he got up, he'd let it go.
I was incorrect in that assumption.
Later that day, he came down with one of those little nose/ear hair trimmer things and plopped himself on the couch.
LB, you've got to find that hair and trim it. It's driving me crazy. It's sticking up! Can you see it?
(I really should have taken my glasses off to see that teeny tiny irritant, because to be honest I never did see it.)
Do you have any idea how hard it is to trim someone's ear hair when you've got the giggles?
While I was desperately trying to please my man and trim his ear hair, he went on and on telling me how much ear hair makes him crazy. He can't stand little old men who let their ear hair get longer than the hair on their heads or their eyebrows for that matter. The statement that put me over the edge was when he said, (and I quote) "I'm just metro-sexual like that."
That did it for me - the giggles turned into all out hysterical laughter complete with tears.
Yes, he is very lucky he can still hear and that he still has an ear on the left side of his head.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Big Doings...

#1 made National Honor Society!
He is thrilled that his hard work paid off. We got the forms to fill out last week - they were intense! When I was in National Honor Society, I didn't have to fill out forms or anything. I got a note that said to show up to be inducted. Yes, I know.. I'm old. Things have changed.

Tomorrow night, #1 is off to a VMI orientation evening. He is totally psyched! Right now VMI is his first choice for college. I am pretty sure he can get in with his grades, community service, class rank, and extracurricular activities. I just hope they have funds available for him, as I do not.

On Thursday we are off to Disney on Ice - Celebrations! The female population in this house is very excited to be going. Needless to say, #1 has decided that homework is far more his style and he'll be staying home to do it. No surprise there!

This weekend brings another competition and #1's 17th birthday. He will spend his day with his friends marching, hauling equipment, eating cake, and generally having a good time. And - No - I cannot believe that I have a 17 year old thankyouverymuch.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

A Bad Day...

Ever wondered what happens when Hallmark writers are having a bad day?

My tire was thumping.
I thought it was flat
When I looked at the tire...
I noticed your cat.
Sorry!

_______________________________

Heard your wife left you,
How upset you must be.
But don't fret about it...
She moved in with me.
_______________________________

Looking back over the years
that we've been together,
I can't help but wonder...
'What the hell was I thinking?'
_______________________________

Congratulations on your wedding day!
Too bad no one likes your husband.
_______________________________

How could two people as beautiful as you
Have such an ugly baby?
_______________________________

I've always wanted to have
someone to hold,
someone to love.
After having met you ..
I've changed my mind.
_______________________________

I must admit, you brought Religion into my life.
I never believed in Hell until I met you.
_______________________________

As the days go by, I think of how lucky I am...
That you're not here to ruin it for me.
_______________________________

Congratulations on your promotion.
Before you go...
Would you like to take this knife out of my back?
You'll probably need it again.
_______________________________

Happy Birthday, Uncle Dad!
(Available only in Tennessee , Kentucky & West Virginia )
_______________________________

Happy birthday! You look great for your age.
Almost Lifelike!
_______________________________

When we were together,
you always said you'd die for me.
Now that we've broken up,
I think it's time you kept your promise...
_______________________________

We have been friends for a very long time --
let's say we stop?
_______________________________

I'm so miserable without you
it's almost like you're here.
_______________________________

Congratulations on your new bundle of joy.
Did you ever find out who the father was?
_______________________________

Your friends and I wanted to do
something special for your birthday.
So we're having you put to sleep.

_______________________________

So your daughter's a hooker,
and it spoiled your day.
Look at the bright side,
it's really good pay

Friday, October 16, 2009

Busy

I'm busy today - I've got to make cookies and package them for the band kids, finish up the handbell scrapbook that I got absolutely nowhere with yesterday, get my rear end to an afternoon/evening meeting for noon, and finally get back out to the high school for 7pm. Wish me luck.

It is rainy and gray today. It is homecoming. The combination kinda stinks. According the principal, the show will go on as long as there isn't any lightning or downpours. LLB went out with a winter coat (with down insert), scarf, gloves, and extra socks. That child will NOT be cold tonight. Her band hat will protect her head and keep her hair dry. #1 went out with his band jacket... It's a really good thing that boy runs hot!

This kind of weather is really hard on the woodwinds. I'm glad we only have one woodwind in this house! The brass can handle the water, but the sax's pads can get ruined in the rain. Fortunately, the band director is a kind and frugal man. He'll have them play the Star Spangled Banner and put the woodwinds away. The brass and percussion will play for the rest of the evening...

Well, tonight will be fun - rain or not.
I'd best put an umbrella in the car...

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Tying up the loose ends

Today will be spent finishing up projects and getting a bunch of stuff off my desk (and my counter). I'm working on typing in the final few recipes for the cookbook, sending out our handbell festival registration for the springtime, gathering my receipts and other goodies for my meeting tomorrow, getting my act together for this afternoon's meeting, doing a bit of laundry, and getting the handbell scrapbook updated. That certainly doesn't sound like much, but if you could see my desk and my counter you'd think otherwise... It's wild!

LLB finished her English project yesterday - the remnants of that project were put away, but just doing the project created a giant mess out of everything else I had going. Just know that her project turned out really cute. I should have taken a picture of it - she made a shoe box scene of Romeo and Juliette "redneck style". Romeo had curly hair and wore overalls and no shoes. Juliette had ponytails and wore a denim jumper and a little apron. The scene was in an apple orchard (with one apple tree) at night. It was all made out of paper. (I have a die cutter and dies - Lord knows nobody in this house can draw!) The hardest part? Getting it all to stand up. She has these great ideas, but implementing them is almost impossible.

This weekend is homecoming and the weather isn't looking very promising. We are hoping the rain holds off for the football game on Friday... It's supposed to be cold and rainy until Sunday. The kids are hoping for the best.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

He'll be wearing

an awesome outfit to Homecoming.
I found exactly what he wanted and it was all on sale... Not as on sale as I would have liked - but it's okay.
While I was shopping, I was debating between two awesome red ties. One was a little more formal, and the other was a little more on the wilder side. I heard a couple walk by talking about a little girl who had just puked all over the floor. I decided right then that both ties were in order and I left. It was the fastest tie decision I've ever made!
FYI: He liked the wilder one for Homecoming. He's going to wear the other one when we go to the VMI orientation next week. (I was going to return the second one, but he wants to keep it. A guy can never have too many ties!)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Homecoming...

The Homecoming dance is coming up - as you all already know. LLB has her dress. #1 doesn't have an "outfit" so to speak. Today I may have to go shopping for said "outfit". The theme for the evening is Mardi Gras. He has given me specific instructions about what he wants - he wants all black with a red tie. Why? He wants to look tall?

LLB and her friend B are going together. She was faceb**king with him yesterday and he said something about not going. She fixed that. She just asked him to go with her - just as friends. It seems to me that she may have played right into his hand... He's a slick one, that B. I think he may have been plotting this for a quite a while.

#1 has two girls he's meeting at the dance. One who isn't allowed to date and one who is a friend of LLB's. (So many girls.. so little time..) He'll be a dancing fool!

Shopping anyone?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Blog Traffic

Isn't it interesting that if you post something controversial, your traffic explodes? What is even more fascinating is when you go back to posting what you normally talk about, your traffic goes back to the same 20 readers you've had since the beginning?

Yeah... I thought so, too.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

A Saturday Funny

Does this sound like your priest?? Hmmm...

A new priest at his first mass was so nervous he could hardly speak.

After mass he asked the monsignor how he had done.

The monsignor replied, 'When I am worried about getting nervous on the pulpit, I put a glass of vodka next to the water glass. If I start to get nervous, I take a sip.'

So next Sunday he took the monsignor's advice.

At the beginning of the sermon, he got nervous and took a drink.

He proceeded to talk up a storm.

Upon his return to his office after the mass, he found the following note on the door:

1) Sip the vodka, don't gulp.

2) There are 10 commandments, not 12.

3) There are 12 disciples, not 10.

4) Jesus was consecrated, not constipated.

5) Jacob wagered his donkey, he did not bet his ass.

6) We do not refer to Jesus Christ as the late J.C.

7) The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are not referred to as Big Daddy, Junior and the spook.

8) David slew Goliath; he did not kick the shit out of him.

9) When David was hit by a rock and was knocked off his donkey, don't say he was stoned off his ass.

10) We do not refer to the cross as the 'Big T.'

11) When Jesus broke the bread at the last supper he said, 'Take this and eat it for it is my body.' He did not say 'Eat me.'

12) The Virgin Mary is not called 'Mary with the Cherry.'

13) The recommended grace before a meal is not: Rub-A-Dub-Dub thanks for the grub, Yeah God.

14) Next Sunday there will be a taffy pulling contest at St. Peter's not a peter pulling contest at St.Taffy's.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Music for Soldiers

LLB is part of the brass ensemble at school. She and that group went to play for some of the soldiers from Walter Reed at an event yesterday. The kids did a great job and the soldiers really appreciated their efforts. Some even came over and thanked them - which seemed a little bit backwards... you know?

When the kids were getting ready to go, they changed into appropriate outfits. LLB wore a lovely dress and a sweater. When she came out of the changing room, the boys were shocked. It seems they forgot that behind that trumpet, is a girl - a real girly girl. In their defense, she normally wears jeans or shorts to school. One of her trumpet-mates said, "Wow, LLB. You're a girl! You look great!"

I'll giggle about that one all day!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Ch... Ch... Changes...

The biggest change around here is the doors - they are finished. They are gorgeous! The difference in the light coming into the spaces is amazing! My foyer is now light and airy. What a difference a white door with a window in it makes! The old door was a solid door with blue paint on the inside (to match all the "lovely" blue trim in this house) - it made the foyer sooo dark!!

The old front door is off to the high school to become the door to the band's storage area today. I'm glad it can be put to good use - it has a lot of life in it, but it ain't going to be living it here at The Crossing. I am borrowing Grandpa's car to get it down to the school. The door is just to big for my sweet CRV. We tried to stuff it in there yesterday and it was pretty funny!! We could have made it fit, but driving 20 miles with a steel door smooshed over your head isn't really all that safe - you know?

Since my "behavior" post got so much nasty traffic, I've moved it to a different blog. One where I can vent and not worry that people will take offense. The point of a blog is to write - to work through things - it's a journal so to speak. It's a place to say what you think. It isn't so this person can squeal to that person that they think I've written about someone else -- which is exactly what happened. Want to see my rants? Let me know. I don't rant often - probably about once a quarter. If you scroll through here, there are a few rants, but it's mostly happiness and light about my kids -- which I'm sure you all find almost nauseating!

So, what other changes do we have happening around here? Well, I'm going to be pricing hardwood flooring for upstairs and the stairs. That 1986 carpet has definitely seen a better day. I'm hoping that it isn't too expensive, because I don't know how much longer we can put up with what we have. Vile is a really good description...

I've had some changes of opinion about a couple of people this week - and that's not a good thing. I'm keeping those opinions to myself, but those who know me well will notice a huge change in certain settings. I even sent an email to a dear friend telling her that she was absolutely right about those individuals and that I was sorry to have doubted her. So - If you're looking for me, I'm with my family, the band or with my church bells. I'm busy there and I'll be busy there for quite a while.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Random Dozen

I borrowed this from Melli because it looked fun.

1. On an average, how often do you splurge and buy something for yourself?
I'd say once a quarter...

2. Are you more like Hall or Oates? Just kidding. Real question: What is the last creative project you began/finished? I made a scarf and then proceeded to lose it... classic!

3. OK, Goldie Locks, do you consider your house too big, too little or juuuust right?
My little house in the country is just the right size. I'm working on getting it just right for us.

4. What is your favorite outdoor chore?
Swinging in the hammock or sitting by the fire - does that count?.

5. If you knew that cigarette smoking was not bad for your health but would be a weight loss tool, would you use it? Why or why not?
No way. Eeewww!

6. On a road trip, would you rather drive or ride?
Drive - I'm the world's worst passenger and I'm not afraid to admit it.

7. What do you consider a trivial pursuit?
Writing on my blog - although venting on my blog became a huge deal because someone made a snowball and gave it to someone else to throw... you know?

8. This weekend, we downloaded the movie "Duplicity" with Julia Roberts and Clive Owen. Within 5 minutes, I was bored and annoyed, but I kept watching 5-10 minutes at a time hoping it would get better between small chores. I finally gave up and Jorge watched it alone, and then regretted wasting that time because he disliked it intensely, too. So ... how long do you watch a movie or read a book before giving up on it?
I have slept through many a movie. As for books - if I'm not into it by page 150, I'll flip to the end to see if I might want to finish it.

9. Is there a song that you really love but are embarrassed to admit because it's not cool or it's racy or because it's by Hall and Oates?
I love many songs that the rest of the world hates... it matters not. I like music that makes me happy.

10. On a scale of 1-10 (10 = extremely) how spontaneous are you?
5.

11. Are you a food and/or beverage snob?
No - but I do prefer diet coke over diet pepsi.

12. Who/What are you trying to control in your life?
I'd like to control the clutter in my house, but that's not working! I control no one, but people sure like to try to control me. One wants to control what I say and write when. Another gets upset when I speak with the principal as a parent - not as an officer. There are others who think I should keep quiet about a lot of things. BUT, my friends accept me and love me for who I am - a fiercely loyal, but quirky person who says what everyone else wishes they did.

New Doors

The doors are in!
I was going to post a a picture of the front of the house until it loaded onto my screen. The door is lovely, but all I saw was the hedge that needs to be trimmed, the messy front stoop, and the trim that now needs to be painted white. So...anyway, here's the door. Ignore the ugly blue paint and picture it white...
Now I need to accessorize the front stoop and get the hedges trimmed up - maybe I'll start with that this morning. That will make the place look so much better. I didn't want to do it until all the construction was finished... I'm just lazy like that.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

It's MY blog...

And I'll write what I want.

What I write here is my opinion. If I don't like the way you act, talk, eat, fart, or drive - that's my opinion. If you give me blog fodder, I'm going to use it.

Ever notice that when you speak the truth and it stings a little bit, people don't like it? This is what has happened here. I never ever use names (or even faces for that matter) - but if you read something that makes you think that it could be you... maybe you need to make a change or think about the situation next time it arises. If you don't think I'm right - push the little red x up there in the corner. That's what it's for.

This little blog of mine is my own. I will NOT be censored. No one will tell me what to post and what to take down. I will not apologize for my opinion. It's MINE.

If my words wield the kind of power I've been told they do, then I should be Queen of the Universe. Alas, I'm just a busy mom who has a mountain of laundry and an opinion or two.

Basically it comes down to this:
If you don't like what I write - Don't read. Go away.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Holy Cow!

I can't believe it's been this long since I last posted. Let me try to catch you all up on our busy life...

We've had a birthday - mine. Yes, I'm still 29. I celebrated with my friends at lunch time - I was blessed with cards, flowers, ladybug stuff, a video game, and ice cream. I celebrated with the family at dinner - more video games, gift cards, and a brother ptouch. They think they can get me organized.... LOL!!!

We've had another band competition. The kids scored better than they did the first competition, but ended up 1 point behind 1st place. This is a good thing, though... as they get cocky when they win and now - since second place is not as wonderful as first, they are working harder than ever to get that 1st place back.

I've uploaded and distributed over 300 pictures to the families of our band students. I take pix of all the kids during the competitions. I want the families who can't or don't attend to feel like they are part of it. I know that when #1 was a freshman and I couldn't be there, I felt like I was missing out. This way, the parents are included and their scrapbooks are complete.

I'm in the midst of getting the band cookbook ready to go to press. I've got 69 recipes and am waiting for a bunch more. They will sell for $5 and the recipes I've received are phenomenal!! I've typed them all in and wow! I was gettin' mighty hungry while I was typin'. The recipes are easy and yummy! Want a cookbook? Let me know. I'll tell how you can order it online and have it shipped right to you. These things are going to be collectors items... and the recipes are family faves! This is one cookbook you'll use all the time!

LLB is working on 2 projects - one for Science and one for English. She worked for a few hours yesterday afternoon and that Science project is coming along - it's a paper and a Powerpoint. She's quite a Powerpoint weenie... I'm impressed!

We took #1 to the first college fair of the year last week. He has his sights set on VMI right now. They have 2 music scholarships as well as academic scholarships for which he can apply. VMI will give him the structure he wants and needs without having to do all that Math that the USNA requires... (Of course while we were walking around the college fair, he mentioned something about majoring in Math. I ignored that statement.) VMI invited him to an orientation in October and an overnight in the spring. The recruiter did a great job! #1's hooked. :-)

This week brings a mountain of laundry left over from last week as well as dishes and all the running around I usually do. My goal is to get it all done and keep it caught up... Yeah, right! So anyway - maybe just making sure everyone has clean sheets and clean underwear is going to have to be good enough.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Quiz... With Answers

A recent survey of elementary age kids:


HOW DO YOU DECIDE WHO TO MARRY?
You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming.
-- Alan, age 10

No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with.
-- Kristen, age 10

WHAT IS THE RIGHT AGE TO GET MARRIED?
Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then.
-- Camille, age 10

HOW CAN A STRANGER TELL IF TWO PEOPLE ARE MARRIED?
You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids.
-- Derrick, age 8

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOUR MOM AND DAD HAVE IN COMMON?
Both don't want any more kids.
-- Lori, age 8

WHAT DO MOST PEOPLE DO ON A DATE?
Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough.
-- Lynnette, age 8 (isn't she a treasure)

On the first date, they just tell each other lies and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date.
-- Martin, age 10

WHEN IS IT OKAY TO KISS SOMEONE?
When they're rich.
-- Pam, age 7

The law says you have to be eighteen, so I wouldn't want to mess with that.
-- Curt, age 7

The rule goes like this: If you kiss someone, then you should marry them and have kids with them. It's the right thing to do.
-- Howard, age 8

IS IT BETTER TO BE SINGLE OR MARRIED?
It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them.
-- Anita, age 9 (bless you, child )


HOW WOULD THE WORLD BE DIFFERENT IF PEOPLE DIDN'T GET MARRIED?
There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there?
-- Kelvin, age 8

And the #1 Favorite is ..........

HOW WOULD YOU MAKE A MARRIAGE WORK?
Tell your wife that she looks pretty, even if she looks like a dump truck.
-- Ricky, age 10

Monday, September 21, 2009

The Mama Test

A dear friend sent me this today:

I was out walking with my 4-year-old daughter. She picked up something off
The ground and started to put it in her mouth. I took the item away from
Her and asked her not to do that.

"Why?" my daughter asked.

"Because its been on the ground, you don't know where it's been, it's dirty,
And probably has germs," I replied.

At this point, my daughter looked at me with total admiration and asked, "
Mama, how do you know all this stuff? You are so smart."

I was thinking quickly and replied, "All moms know this stuff. It's on the
Mama Test. You have to know it, or they don't let you be a Mama."

We walked along in silence for 2 or 3 minutes, but she was evidently
Pondering this new information.

"Oh.....I get it!" she beamed, "So if you don't pass the test you have to be
The dad."

"Exactly," I replied with a big smile on my face.

When you're finished laughing, send this to a Mama.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Back to the grind...

I am back to my busy self today...

I have already done some band business and some AGEHR business. I've requested quotes for shirts, updated some history, and even managed to do a little filing. I KNEW you'd be impressed.

I'm volunteering at the high school library this morning. Hopefully the lady at the front door will let me in. Last time she gave me a hard time. No wonder nobody volunteers for the upper grades anymore...

This afternoon I teach my handbell class.

This evening, the kids have swimming. LLB and I will go to dinner with R and HP before we head over to the pool. That's my favorite time of the day. That 30 minutes of chatter and laughter is just the best! #1 swims early, so he'll eat with Mr. after swimming.

I just glanced down at my desk and discovered a few more things I need to get done before I blast out of here for the day. So - enjoy your day and I'll try to catch up with all of you tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Clean & Green

I got a can of Clean + Green carpet & upholstery cleaner for cats and dogs as well as a can of furniture refresher in the mail a while back.

I've had this stain in my upstairs hallway for quite some time. I think it was a Zeb mishap from when he was allowed full reign of the house. Anyway, I decided to see if the Carpet Cleaner it might work on getting that ancient stain out.

I followed the directions on the can to the letter. I sprayed, I let it sit. I came back later and believe it or not - the spot was definitely lighter. I re-treated the stain and I have to say, this stuff is miraculous! The spot is gone.

There was another spot in our bedroom. I think I may have treated it a little too much because the carpet is now really clean - but it looks like a spot because it is so clean. My carpet is from 1986. Need I say more?

I also used the furniture refresher - it works miracles! It got the teenage boy stink out of his bedroom. Yes, I know it is for dog and cat smells, but I thought I'd give it a really tough job. It also got the dog stink out of the couch pillow... This Clean +Green Stuff is amazing!!

So - if you need something that really works - get this stuff!!