Friday, November 30, 2007

My friend Christine is on Who Wants to be a Millionaire!

Here is an article from her local paper! She won $8,000 yesterday and is on again today! It is so exciting! I'll update when I know her final total!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I HATE days like this!

I don't even know where to start. I am so infinitely irritated at so many aspects of my life right now, I don't even know what to put at the top of my list.

OK, here's the first one. I teach first grade. First graders cannot read very well, therefore we have to do quite a few worksheets for practice, etc. Up until this school year, we have been allotted 15,000 copies a year. This year, for some reason, we were cut back to 10,000. It is impossible to keep first graders engaged and learning without something to do. And I'm almost out of copies. Another first grade teacher is out already and had to practically grovel to our principal to get more. I know that this may not sound like a big deal, but this is just an example of the lack of forethought that is often given to administrative issues lately in my workplace. It gets very frustrating.

Second one. I have a student who just doesn't seem to 'get' numbers. Or so it seems. I can't figure it out. One day she seems to get addition and subtraction, the next she acts like she's never seen it. Then today, we were talking about greater than and less than. Again, she acts like she has no concept. I don't know if she doesn't want to take the time to think, she's being lazy, or she really doesn't get it. I don't mean to be frustrated with her, but I don't know what I need to do to reach her.

Third. Isaac was all excited about going to this store that carries products for our local high school teams. The store is going out of business, so the hours have been cut down. We get there, and PUSH it to get there, by 3:45 when the sign says that the store closes at 4. NO ONE IS THERE! I can tell why they're going out of business when they don't keep the freakin' hours that they post! I absolutely abhor when people don't do what they say they are going to do!

Fourth. Dh had a car accident week before last. We are being given the runaround about dealing with that. It was NOT dh's fault, but it looks like we may have to have our insurance cover our damages if things keep continuing the way they are going. This sucks out the wazoo!

Fifth. Our church is in decline. No one but members of my family and a few others seem to see what the issue is that is causing this, and even fewer want anything done about it.

I know that God is in control and that most of this is NOT in my control, so I don't need to be fretting over it. But it is so hard, especially when it all hits at once.

Add to this that Christmas plans have been changed and have left me totally not looking forward to it at all, and I'm a pretty down gal tonight. If you would say a prayer or think good thoughts my way, I'd really appreciate it!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

I'm home...

Did anyone notice I was gone?! LOL

I went to my inlaws' for Thanksgiving and didn't have internet access, but of course, I blew NaBloPoMo earlier. We had a good trip. I would have really liked to have been home getting things done and actually feeling like I was getting a BREAK here, but nevertheless.....I'm home now. Funny the things you miss when you are away, you know? Like sometimes I get really tired of dh watching FoxNews all the time but what did I turn the TV on to catch up on things when we got home? Yup, you guessed it!

Since the boys slept the last 2.5 hours of the trip, they'll be up at their regular time, so I probably ought to go to bed! Sweet dreams!

Monday, November 19, 2007

So many depressing things!

It is hard to keep 'up' and joyful when so many difficult things are happening. An online friend passed away last night. A friend of several friends committed suicide yesterday. I found out today that someone close to my family has possibly been involved in using money inappropriately, and this could have huge implications.

I am very thankful for all the many, many blessings I have every day. However, it upsets me to think of the family members of these individuals who won't be in a celebratory mood this week.

Sorry for the downer post. Thanks for reading if you did.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Still on a football high.....

Here is my other nephew....I think he's pretty awesome too!
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And sadly, our Volleyball girls lost the final. *sigh*

Saturday, November 17, 2007

All the way to state, all the way to state!


Our local high school team, that is.....and I am SOOOOO excited and proud of the way that our boys played today. They went out there and gave it their all! I'm especially proud, of course, of my nephews....but I taught quite a few of the boys on the team in my first years at SES. I am so proud of them! The opposing team attempted to start fights and just generally play dirty, but our boys didn't stoop to their level!

SO! Next Saturday we will meet a team at UVA-Wise on artificial turf....which should be interesting. My brother in law said that he was taking my nephew the kicker up there tomorrow to practice. The team will go up at least once this week, I'm sure. I am so stinkin' proud of them!

And as I type this, our girls volleyball team is playing in the state final game in Richmond at Virginia Commonwealth University. I taught several of those girls, teach the brother of one, and led some in our church youth group--and the coach is a good friend and fellow church member as well. I can't wait to hear if they won!

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That's one of my boys!

Friday, November 16, 2007

About what shall I blog, dear Henry, dear Henry...

Do ya'll remember that old song, "There's a Hole in the Bucket"? Just had it on my mind.

OK. Well. I survived the annual school Thanksgiving dinner with no fatalities this year. Not that there were fatalities any year, but ya know, its just one of those days that the kids get all hyped up and the schedule is off and they keep asking,"When are we.....When are we.....When are we....." and I don't have the answer. BUT! I went into the day thinking, "We will get nothing done today." and then was pleasantly surprised when we did. Got mildly irritated at a few things, but overall I'd call it a success. This is the day where parents and grandparents and such are invited to come eat lunch with the kiddos in grades K, 2, 4, and 6. We do the same thing with 1, 3, and 5 at Christmas, but it never is as bad for some reason. Maybe people are too busy with Christmas activities to come then? I don't know. But either way, it is done and after 2 more days I'll get 3 days off! YAY!

Oh, and one of the irritations I blogged about the other day was that I didn't know if Chris would want to go to the Big Game Saturday with me, and he DOES and IS! So another yay there! I SO hope that they play well tomorrow. I know that they are really psyched up! This team beat us earlier in the season, and from what I have heard, it was ugly....players stomping on our quarterback and such. So our boys are out for revenge on home turf. Its gonna be cold but that's okay. We can layer! Go Big Blue!

That's about it. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

What keeps YOU up at night?

from the writing prompt group on NaBloPoMo:

What keeps you up at night? Write about the thoughts, person, job that has you tossing and turning all night. Conversely, write about how you are able to fall asleep on a dime and how you do it. Really, I want to know! Give me your secret for a good night's sleep and I will promise not to hate you for being able to go to sleep so easily.

Hmmm....well, right now it is finances. Dh had a fender bender today and I'm trying not to stress about it. But it just adds to what we might have to pay for. *sigh*

Sometimes, it is worries about family or friends. Sometimes it is plain 'ol stress that causes insomnia. Sometimes it is caffeine. Sometimes it is worries about my students. When I REALLY can't sleep, sometimes I rehash things said or done years in the past.

Good nights' sleep are not easily come by around here. I even had a sleep study done a few weeks ago, with no underlying problems found.

Now you answer!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Reasons why I am irritated

1. Dh had the boys last night and tonight for various reasons, and it never occurred to him that they might need to bathe!

2. The cheeseburger and fries that sounded so good for dinner have caused me stomach pain since.

3. Adam spilled a cup of water. All over the pile of clothing that I need to get boxed up and give to someone.

4. There are clothes all over both boys rooms that I need to box up and either give to someone (Adam's) or save for smaller brother to grow into them (Isaac's).

5. Dh was a big GC football fan (local high school) up until this year, when he is administrating at a different school. Now he doesn't care whether he goes to the games or not. And as luck would have it, this is the year that I have two nephews playing, and playing well, on the team.

6. No one else seems to be able to pick.anything.up. out of the floor of this house!

7. It has been too rainy to have recess outside all week. First graders + no recess = hyper!

8. That should do it, but I want to have an even number of posts.

Bleh. so there.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

How much do you love your winter coat?

I got to experience the joy that comes with getting a needed item you don't expect. Someone donated some winter coats to our school for children that needed them. I told our guidance counselor that one child in my classroom could use a coat.

This child doesn't always wear clean clothing. His pants are often 2 to 3 sizes too big, and drag the ground. I recently searched for a belt for him to wear to hold these pants up, and he was very appreciative.

But the belt was nothing compared to the joy that he got today from getting this new coat. It is a really nice coat, fits well, and is BRIGHT red! He was so excited! He told me that he got to pick out which color he liked, and was so thrilled with it that he wore it, hood up and all, to Phys. Ed. so the other kids could see. What pride he had in his eyes as he strode down the hall with his head held high.

This is one of the days that I love my job!

Monday, November 12, 2007


This Thanksgiving is going to be very different than any in my 34 years past. This year, I'm spending Thanksgiving with my inlaws. I've never been away from my family on Thanksgiving. My mother in law asked us to come up, and after much prayer, tears, and bouncing back and forth, I decided that there was no good reason for us NOT to go. I am biting the bullet and not being selfish, even though a huge part of me wants to stay here.

It isn't that I don't love my inlaws. I do! But spending time with them is not, shall we say, the most relaxing time in the world.....several things that I have at home, I don't have there. One big thing is that there is a big possibility that I won't have internet access. Last time we were up there, we couldn't even get it to log on. Why they are paying for it to not use it, I don't know. I also like to sleep with the TV on, which I can't do there, as there is not a TV in our bedroom. My mother in law can also be overbearing at times, so that causes difficulties.

Even though my family all lives in one town, we don't get to sit down and visit that often. We're all busy! If we didn't attend church together, we wouldn't see each other as often as we do. So to miss one of two times in a year that I usually get to enjoy spending time with my is hard on me to even think about.

Chris has been very understanding and has said over and over again that we don't have to go, and if we do go, we can go up on Friday. But I need to think about the needs of the entire family and not just me. That's not to say that I won't cry...I can almost guarantee that I will. But that is what being an adult is about, right??

Sunday, November 11, 2007

What I've learned this weekend

I've learned several things, so I thought I'd share my new knowledge!

I did a Children's Sermon on Veteran's Day at church today. When doing my research, I found out why people wear poppies on Veteran's Day. It is to remember Flander's Field, a place where many soldiers are buried from WWI. In this field, poppies grow between and around the white crosses placed to mark the graves of the fallen soldiers. Did you know that? I didn't!

What else did I learn? Our sermon this morning was on Acts 9:19b-25.
Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus. 20At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. 21All those who heard him were astonished and asked, "Isn't he the man who raised havoc in Jerusalem among those who call on this name? And hasn't he come here to take them as prisoners to the chief priests?" 22Yet Saul grew more and more powerful and baffled the Jews living in Damascus by proving that Jesus is the Christ.[a]

23After many days had gone by, the Jews conspired to kill him, 24but Saul learned of their plan. Day and night they kept close watch on the city gates in order to kill him. 25But his followers took him by night and lowered him in a basket through an opening in the wall.

(quoted from

Now, what does this mean? Our guest minister today made a great point: what if someone who was lowering Saul to the ground in this basket let go of the rope? How the face of Christianity would have been changed, and probably how history would have been affected as well! The greatest missionary effort in all of Christianity would not have taken place, and even you and I may never have heard about Christ if Saul had not become Paul and had not shared the Gospel as he did.

So here is our challenge: we don't need to let go of the rope either! We need to be committed to supporting church programs and sharing the word of Christ with others. If we don't, what child might not know about the Lord? What youth might not feel nurtured and might turn away from the church to other things where he/she is attended to? What lives might we not change? We need not keep the GREAT NEWS about the Lord to ourselves! We were told in the Great Commission to share the Lord with others! I'm preaching to myself here, too, folks--I need to do better as well.

Something else that God has shown me today: we have a small Bible study group made up of 4 women that we have been trying to meet with each week. Tonight, it was just me and my sister for most of the time, and one other lady showed up at the end. But it was good! We talked about how we needed to step out in Faith, both financially as we give to the Lord and also in our personal lives. She and I both are involved in small home-based businesses, but I have really felt like the Lord was leading me in a different direction, and if I listen to Him and follow, it would help me and her! What a blessing that God shows me where he needs me to go, and what a double blessing I get when I PAY ATTENTION and LISTEN! This is so hard sometimes--to be still and wait for Him to lead us, but doesn't it feel wonderful when we do??

OK, so I've had a sermon online today, but I thank you for reading and hope that you, too, have had a good Sunday and weekend.

Here's a question for you: What did YOU learn this weekend?

Saturday, November 10, 2007

And now, a word from our sponsors....

but really it is just from me! LOL

Thought I'd let ya'll know what little businesses I have going on the side in case you wanted to know and do some shoppin'! And cause I need money to do my Christmas shopping too, ya know!

I am an Avon representative, and you can visit my site here. I also rep for some lesser known companies that offer quality products: Open Door Decor & More is a newer company owned by two friends, and offers many decorative items, including some awesome things for Christmas! Visit here to see the things we offer! I also am a representative for a FANTASTIC place for handmade candles called Creative Scentsations! Check 'em out! Also if you will leave me a comment related to one of these companies and email me an order, I'll give you 10% off!!

Another neat venture that I am trying to get into is called Dine Without Whine. Now, I'll admit to ya, I'm not the cook in our household, but I am trying to help out more. And here you can get a menu for 5 main courses plus brunch on Sat. and Sun. and suggestions for other dishes emailed to you each week! It even comes with a shopping list! In order to get in on the low price of $4.95 a month, you need to act soon, as the price is going up on Nov. 15!

OK, I promise I won't bug ya over and over with this stuff, but I thought I'd at least plug for myself once!! I'd appreciate it if you would check them out! Thanks!! :D

Friday, November 9, 2007

Here comes trouble!

What did you get into the most trouble for when you were young?

Well, depends on the age, or where I was! At school/church, I would get in trouble for talking too much. I remember getting in trouble a few times for not being where I said I'd be or not coming home when I said I would, and got in trouble a couple of times for skipping school. I really wasn't too bad of a kid....didn't drink or do drugs, had mostly okay boyfriends...but I did run away once. Not too bad for a preacher's kid! LOL

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Guess what I forgot to do yesterday?

Yep, you got it, I forgot to blog. Oh well....I made it almost a week! LOL I was really trying to stay off the computer for the most part yesterday and spend more time doing other things, and updating the blog was one thing I DIDN'T do. *sigh* I really hate that!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


What was your first job, your worst job and your dream job?

My first job was as a summer Youth Worker at a local church. At the time, I thought church work was something I wanted to go into full-time, so this job made great sense. I did have a good time and learned much about myself and about working with others, particularly middle schoolers.

My worst job? That one is harder. I think I'll cheat a bit and tell you about my worst summer. The biggest bummer that summer was that my boyfriend, who at the time would eventually be my husband, broke up with me. In hindsight, I see that there were many signs that the breakup was coming. At the time, I was blindsided and devastated. Another 'hindsight' observation was that I had already been dealing with being depressed for months when this happened, but this sent me reeling into a full-fledged depressive episode. I will never forget driving myself to the classes that I was taking and having to pray my way there to keep from crashing on purpose. NOT a good memory, let me tell you!

Then later in the summer, we had a foreign exchange student come live with us for 6 weeks. She was a piece of work! She would sit in front of us and talk about how we weren't doing the things she wanted us to do in French, so we couldn't understand her. About 2 weeks after she arrived, my sister gave birth to her third child. Labor and Delivery went fine, but little Maria ingested some meconium and was rushed to NICU. There, they realized that she was going to need a blood transfusion. Needless to say, we were all very worried and spent many hours running back and forth to the hospital. I didn't even get to see the little sweetie until she was 10 days old. (And wouldn't you know that the aforementioned ex-boyfriend got to see her before I did?? He was an EMT and had to transport another infant and got to see her then!)

Oh, yeah, I was supposed to mention a JOB here wasn't I? I was working at a greeting card store in the mall that summer, and honestly that job was my sanity. It was easy to pay attention to customers or straightening the store as opposed to how out of control my life felt that summer. I continued to work it seasonally for the next few years and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Now. My dream job! Well, short of being a famous author, I think I HAVE my dream job. Teaching first grade is definitely a challenge, but one that I love and enjoy immensely. I LOVE my students, I love teaching students to read, and I love the feeling I get helping others grasp concepts for the first time. That is not to say that there aren't days that I dislike it (um, like yesterday!!) but I do feel like it is my calling. I can't think of any other job where I would be more stimulated or come away being more fulfilled.

So there ya go!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Ah, the joys of being a teacher....

like FALL FESTIVAL! Woo hoo!!

Since our schools are closed tomorrow due to Election Day because they are polling places, the powers that be decided that tonight would be a great time to have our Fall Festival. Now, to a teacher, no time is a good time to have a fall festival, but that is beside the point.

I had a touch of a stomach bug yesterday and missed both morning and evening church activities, which is totally unheard of in this preacher's kids' household, even as an adult. I didn't sleep the greatest and still wasn't feeling 100% this morning, and the thought of having to do F.F. after work really had me griping. I made it through the day with minimal running to the bathroom, but had a headache by the end of the day. So I called dh and asked him to pick up Adam from daycare and hit the door to head home as soon as I could get away with it. I laid down for 45 minutes, kissed dh and Adam hello and goodbye again, and headed back to school. We first grade teachers were in charge of 4 stations in the gym. It wasn't bad; but after bending over for almost 2 hours picking up balls and rings from the ring toss, I was feeling a tad dizzy. So I took a break, found my family, and grabbed some nachos and a Mr. Pibb. Kudos to Mrs. S. who said she wasn't going to have me pay for my food since I was there working.

All in all, it wasn't bad. Several times, kids pitched in to pick up balls, etc. for us, and gave us enough breaks so we could actually sit momentarily.

Don't get me wrong; I do appreciate that the P.T.O. is raising money for our school. But next time you go to a F.F., ask the teachers running the games if they need a potty break or if they have eaten since 11:30 am, wouldja? I'd appreciate it!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

What was your most embarassing moment?

I can't think of anything to write today, so I thought I'd use a prompt....

so today I'll write about my most embarassing moment!

It was when I was in college, and my parents and I had gone to see a hot air balloon race early one summer Saturday morning. We lived about half an hour from the site, so when we passed a row of port-a-potties, I thought that I probably should stop and visit one of 'em. So there I go...starting to do my business....when the door swings WIDE open! Apparently, I had forgotten to lock the door!! HORRORS!

And if that wasn't embarrassing enough, the MAN who opened the door stands there and yells at me,"You forgot to lock the door!!" NO SH*T, SHERLOCK!!

So he shuts the door and I knew I had to come out of there.....and when I did, of course, several people are standing around laughing. It was just great. Good times!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

What a day....

It started out fairly nicely...dh let me sleep in, then I ate eggs and biscuits and gravy, and then went to Curves with my mom. I came back and dh decided (yes, with my help) to thin Isaac's hair. BIG big big big mistake! I thought that dh knew how to use the thinning shears, when he didn't, and he butchered his hair. It was horrible. Isaac had beautiful, thick, curly hair, and was growing it out longer. It broke my heart to see all those curls gone. There was much crying, yelling, cussing...and a trip to the beauty shop and his hair is much shorter, but looks better than when his daddy finished with it. Dh took him to McDonald's and bought him a movie to make it all better, but I still could cry looking at his head. Of course, I can't, cause Mama has to keep telling him that it looks fine and that it will grow. It WILL grow, but I just hate it, cause he really liked his hair the way it was!

Then tonight we had a fundraising dinner for our church building fund (we have already built the addition, but still gotta pay for it!)...a chef who is originally from the area and currently has two restaurants in Philly donated all meat and fixin's for the dinner. We are thinking we made around $10,000!! So praise the Lord for that one!! I sang a couple of songs, and could NOT hear myself at all, which was quite frustrating, but I got several compliments, so I must have done okay by the grace of God!

Oh, and Adam, the four year old, didn't nap today. Yeah. Lovely.

But I DID get today's blog in, so that is a big plus, right??!

I'm worn out. Off to bed now. Sweet dreams.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

cloudy days in the mountains

I went tonight to a remote part of far Southwestern Virginia.....a place where those who live in Roanoke and call themselves Southwestern Virginians would have to drive several hours to get to. Although I wasn't going there for pleasant reasons, it was a beautiful drive. I was taken back, momentarily to being twelve and living in a neighboring town where cloudy days in the fall in the mountains have their own feeling and is a dusty, dirty sight, not one that is necessarily bad but not good. The feeling was one of melancholy.

I live in the mountains and honestly don't think I could stand living in the 'flatlands'. I feel exposed, and breathe a sigh of relief when we travel back into 'my mountains'. I miss them just like I miss a family member. But the county where I live is not nearly as IN the mountains as the area where I traveled this evening.

I remember growing up in a small mountain town, where things change so slowly. It was a good time, but when I think of it, I also feel a sense of desperation. I don't quite know how to describe it. Maybe it was just me and MY feeling of desperation, not so much the place or time or age, just me. But either way, I felt that again tonight and it almost brought me to tears.

People who live in cities cannot imagine the good or the bad that a tween or teen living in a small mountain town feels. There is no comparison. The two beings--the city kid and the small town kid--are only alike in that they breathe air and have appendages and stuff. They have very little else in common. I have been both, and although I felt that desperation again tonight, I would much rather be the small town kid.

So there is my random thought of melancholy tonight!