Thursday, August 30, 2007

High School, followup

I was talking with a co-worker today and we were discussing the events that have occurred at the high school. My co-worker brought up a good point (although, it would've never occurred to me to do this) about the recent bomb threats, she said that the kids doing this are just looking to get out of class. Ummm...why not just skip school?! I'm not an advocate for skipping school. I personally think it's stupid, but given the choice between stupidity and jail time...I would choose stupidity. Nothing is worth spending time in jail for, in my opinion. I feel sorry for those students involved in these bomb threats. Apparently, there is no parental guidance at home.

Then again, a lot that is wrong with the schools and students in this country can be directly attributed to the lack of parental guidance at home. But that's a discussion for another post.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

High School

Maybe I was just really naive, but I don't remember having school go into lockdown. Sure...we had our share of fights, drug busts, etc. But bomb threats?! I don't ever recall hearing about that.

Where am I going with this, you ask?! Since school started back on August 2nd, the high school where my daughter will attend next year (she is a freshman @ the 9th grade school across the street) has had 4 bomb threats. 4!!!! WTF is going on?! This makes me VERY uneasy about sending her there. Yesterday, there was another bomb threat and while the students were returning to the building a big fight broke out resulting in several students being maced and arrested. I heard through the grapevine today...we all know how reliable that is...that the bomb threats were being called in from an inside line at the 9th grade school. As far as I know, there are no payphones in the school. So my question is, where is this female (yes, female) student making these calls from and how is she able to utilize the phones without being questioned or noticed? Excuse me, but aren't bomb threats considered a felony?!

Something has got to be done! Whether it's more security or bringing in administration that will take NO shit from anyone...students and parents alike. From everything I've seen and heard, the administration isn't taking any action other than increasing the number of security officers on the premises. I could be wrong because I don't have all the information in front of me, but it sure seems like the administration NEEDS to be taking these events very seriously and they're NOT.

School (and it's administration) needs to provide a safe environment that perpetuates learning! Right now, it's not instilling any confidence in it's ability to do so.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Just for fun meme

A fun meme from tenseteacher. She is the queen of memes! Steal it if you want to or just leave me a comment with your answers. Enjoy!

1. When was the last time you washed your hair?
Yesterday at 5:50 a.m. Ugh! Do I really get up that early?!

2.What were you doing at 8 o’clock this morning?
Sleeping - was up multiple times during the night to watch the lightning show.

3. What were you doing 15 minutes ago?
Reading and commenting on my favorite blogs.

4. Are you any good at math?
Yes, but I don't use it very much in my job.

5. Are you mad at anyone right now?
Irritated -yes, but not mad at them.

6. Do you know the words to your current favorite song?
Yes, but I sing off key!

7. Last thing received in mail?
Southern Living magazine.

8. How many different drinks have you had today?
Two - water, to take meds with and coffee with fat-free hazelnut creamer. Yum!

9. Do you ever leave messages on people’s answering machine?
Only if it's important and I want them to call me back. Usually, I'll just try reach the person later. I'm not much for talking on the phone - usually just my parents, brother and hubby. I mostly "talk" via email, IM & blogs.

10. Any plans for tonight?
Haven't thought that far, yet. I rented some movies yesterday, so maybe do a homemade pizza and movie night.

11. Do you draw your name in the sand when you go to the beach?
Not only my name, but hubby's and the kids. We love the beach.

12. What’s the most painful dental procedure you’ve had?
Having my lower wisdom teeth taken out at 16 by my dentist w/o the luxury of being put under, just novacaine. I remember my chin touching my breast bone and the dentist asking my mom if she wanted to watch. She said "no." I looked like a chipmunk for two weeks. I had my upper wisdom teeth removed by an oral surgeon, much more pleasant.

13. What’s outside your front door?
Four flower pots - 2 with dwarf Alberta spruces underplanted w/ red verbena; 2 (well, actually 1 'cuz the flowers died in the other pot) w/pink flowers that I don't remember the name of. It's been so hot that all of my potted plants are dying, no matter how much I water them. Just hope that I can nurse the spruces along - I've had them for years.

14. Do you have plans on Friday?
Last night (Friday), I hosted book club at my house. We had chicken salad on croissants, fruit salad and cheesecake. Essentially, it's a GNO w/o having to deal with the crowded restaurants. :) Haven't thought ahead to next Friday (Labor Day weekend).

15. Do you like the ocean?
Love it!!! We go every year for a week to NC, but I think that we're going to start making little trips to the Gulf Coast since we've never been and we live 6 hours from it.

16. Have you ever received one of those big tins of 3 different popcorns?
Ummm...not that I can remember.

17. Have you ever been to a planetarium?
Yes, I went when I lived in Aurora, CO. It was great fun!

18. Something you are excited about?
My brother and his wife are coming for Thanksgiving. They haven't been to our 'new' house, yet.
19. Who around you has the most problems?
I think that we all are saddled with something, but no one stands out with having the most.

20. Are any of your great-grandparents still alive?
21. Describe your love life.
Fabulous! Sometimes life interrupts it, but we always make time for us.

22. When was the last time you spoke in front of a large group of people?
Do parents in the school lobby count? If so, everyday. If not, sometime last year.

23. Do you like anyone right now?

24. What was the weather like on your birthday?
Ya know...I don't remember it was 6 months ago. I could guess and say cold and dreary, as it usually is in February.

25. Do you sleep with the door open or closed at night?
Open - the bedroom gets too stuffy if the door is closed.

26. If you could change your name, what would it be?
I wouldn't - I like my name because I use it as is or I can shorten it. You know - Christine, Chris or Christy, but NEVER, NEVER, NEVER Chrissy (I despise that name).

27. Do you like your middle name?
Yes, I just wish I'd have thought to use it as my daughter's middle name.

28. Who are you thinking about right now?
Hubby - he's working the garage on his hobby car and hoping the welder sparks don't ignite anything. He did that a couple of weeks ago and unintentionally melted the lid to the big, green trash can because of a smoldering curtain (long story that I really don't understand).

29. Do you consider your best friends family?

30. Favorite foods?
I like lots of things, but here are a some of my favorites: dark chocolate, of course; cucumbers, nectarines, fresh tomato-basil bruschetta, popcorn, my Mom's Mexican Meat Mix, cheesecake...and much more. As a side note - I don't care for fried foods or corn, mainly because they upset my stomach.

Have a relaxing weekend! I'm planning to. :)

Stormy Weather

WooHoo!!! The heat wave has broken. Well, I hope so anyway. Storms started popping up yesterday afternoon and continued on until the wee hours of this morning. How do I know this? I couldn't sleep! Normally, thunderstorms lull me into sound sleep, but not last night. I'm not prone to having insomnia, so I don't know what happened. Maybe it was the cup of coffee I had with dessert at Book Club, which by the way was great fun despite the book being a bust (I picked a dud).

Anyway, I was up for a little while watching all of the vivid lightning. What a light show!!! It was like daylight in the living room. Very cool! I'd have gone out on the patio to watch, but the rain was blowing onto the porch. Maybe it'll storm again this afternoon. :) Come on rain!!!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Field peas & Tomato sandwiches

That's what we're having for lunch. And, yes, my children love them. My dad would be so proud. Growing up, he always told my brother and me about some of the things he used to eat. Fried okra, fried green tomatoes, peas (black-eyed, field, etc.) and tomato sandwiches, just to name a few. Well, I never really appreciated those things until I moved to the South with my husband, who by the way was born and raised in the South. I was a whiz at making tacos, chimichangas and my mom's famous Mexican Meat Mix, but I was a newbie at Southern cooking. Always willing to try my hand at something new, I asked my MIL how to cook these Southern staples. I believe that I've mastered them and look forward to making such dishes, with the exception of the fried green tomatoes. Just haven't developed a taste for them after all these years.

Now, where's that okra...

P.S. Hubby loves my slow-cooked roast & spoonbread.

Friday, August 17, 2007

This Is My Life, Rated
Life: 8.5
Mind: 7.5
Body: 7
Spirit: 8.4
Friends/Family: 6.9
Love: 9.1
Finance: 8.8
Take the Rate My Life Quiz

Monday, August 13, 2007

A Little Too Late...

Wouldn't you know it?! Just as school's getting back into the swing of things, the builder decides it's time to finish the community clubhouse and pool. Mind you, this is NOT our builder, but the one who took over the community when the original developer backed out. Grrr...

Anyway as I sit here blogging, I can hear the workers busily hammering away on the roof of what's to be the clubhouse. It's infuriating to think that it should've been finished before we went on vacation last month. Here's the timeline: the builder broke ground for the pool on May 1st, then it sat idle for 2 months and then when it just happens to be the hottest August on record, decides it's time to finish the project. WTF have they been doing all summer?!

I can see the clubhouse lot from my back patio and was soooo looking forward using it. Oh well, maybe next summer.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Another Teacher in Space

Tonight, Space Shuttle Endeavor had a successful launch with another teacher-astronaut, Barbara Morgan, on-board. Like most Americans my age, I remember the last time that a teacher went into space. For our generation, it's akin to the Kennedy assassination. Unfortunately, Christa McAuliffe and the crew of Challenger had their mission cut short - just 73 seconds after launch. To this day, I still hold my breath until the 73 second mark has been passed. It still brings tears to my eyes to think that 7 astronauts lost their lives for the exploration of Space. But they understood the risks when they signed up for the astronaut program.

For the past 17 years, I have been a part of the Space program - having worked at MSFC and through my husband who works on the ISS program. There is a thrill of watching each launch. My hubby and I had the opportunity to participate in a night launch of Space Shuttle Endeavor. It was carrying the 1st U.S. built piece of the International Space Station. Now, that was a once in a lifetime experience. To know that my husband has physically worked in/on each U.S.-built piece of the International Space Station is really special. I'm very proud of the work that my husband does. I know that many do not believe in what we're doing, but I firmly believe that we need to continue to explore the universe around us.

Let's pray that this is a successful mission and that they all come home safely.

Aren't you going to share?!

That's what the caption should be for this picture. I thought this picture was hysterical. But then again, I'm a dog lover. Having had a dog that would do this same thing, I couldn't resist. Our golden-lab mix, Sara, would try to get the ice out of your glass the moment she thought you weren't watching her. Enjoy!

courtesy of Stuff on My Mutt

Monday, August 6, 2007

Cleaning House

Let's face it not many people enjoy cleaning the house. I'm NOT one of them. I find it relaxing. My friends know that I set aside one day each week to clean house top to bottom. Before I went back to work that day was Tuesday. I don't know why I chose Tuesday - maybe because Monday was MY day (kids at school and hubby at work). Now, it gets relegated to the weekend. It used to take me all morning to clean the entire house, but now it takes just about all day. Mainly 'cuz I find other things to do (like checking email, reading blogs, etc.). That and I don't really enjoy dusting (I'd rather clean toilets), so I put it off until last. I find great satisfaction knowing that when I'm finished the house looks great...that is until the kids get home. :)

P.S. I love to mow the yard. I do it all mow, edge and clean up the clippings. It's great exercise and when I'm all done, the yard looks really nice.

I know...I'm weird! :)

Sunday, August 5, 2007

It's HOT!!!

Good grief!!! It's hot!!! Every few summers, we here in North Alabama have Augusts where it's just unbearable to be outside for any length of time. It appears that this is going to be one of those Augusts.

Yes, I am from the desert. But I DO NOT like to sweat!!! It makes me feel yucky. I found out very quickly when I moved here that I really don't like to be outside when it's HOT and HUMID. We moved here in August of 1990 - the same year that Phoenix hit 122 degrees in June. I thought that I could handle any kind of heat. Ummm...I was wrong.

So, I'm relishing my air-conditioned house wishing I felt like going out to look at my flowers. But I DO NOT like to sweat. :) I know that the heat will only last a few more weeks and then it's on to my favorite season. FOOTBALL...ooops, I mean fall. :)

Take it easy out there and remember to drink LOTS of water! Soon we'll be complaining that it's TOO COLD. There's just no pleasing us. LOL!!!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

1st Day Back

Today was the 1st day of school for the county schools where I live. This school year will be very different from last. The biggest difference is that the school where I work is half the size it was last year. We went from 1250 students (this is an elementary school) to approximately 600. What a difference!

At several points during the day, I found myself listening to the silence. It was really nice! I may just get spoiled this year. The phone wasn't ringing off the hook and very few parents came in today - that may have something to do with the fact that parents were rejoicing in their new found freedom. We did have an issue with between joint custodial parents this morning. Hopefully, it will be resolved tomorrow. Let's hope that it stays this calm.

Now that I have a year's experience under my belt, I'm planning to make some changes that I believe will make the front office run smoother. I hope to convince my principal that they will work. Keep your fingers crossed.

My kids had a GREAT first day of school, too. D is a freshman at the high school and was thrilled that she has Art (Drawing) this 1st semester. Since the high school is on the block schedule, she'll only have 4 classes this term - 2 core & 2 electives - and she got them in the order that she wanted them (English/Drawing/Algebra 1/Computer). S is a 7th grader and came home to announce that he has many classes with several friends. Last year, he didn't have any of his friends from 5th grade in any of his classes. So, he was ecstatic. I think that they'll both have a great year!

If you have children heading back to school this fall, I hope that they have a great year, too.