Friday, April 30, 2010

HIS goes to DC

I just returned home this morning from a 6 day trip to our nation's capital. I made the journey with over 250 students, parents, and other teachers from my school. We drove 13 hours there and back with 5 buses, spent so much time on the buses that they became our home, slept 4-5 hours each night, hit the ground running nonstop each day, saw a little bit of everything, ate fried chicken more times than I could count, and had more fun than should be legally allowed. Everybody got along for the most part, which I think is impressive considering we were together in tight quarters all day every day. I'll write more about my adventures in the big city later before I forget everything. Until then, I'm going to end with my favorite picture of the whole week. We visited the Vietnam Memorial at sunset one evening and I noticed the Washington Monument reflected in one of the panels. I turned my flash off and ended up with something I'm really excited about.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for...

  • my family and friends

  • the fact that, while fighting a rapidly-advancing attack of the crud, I'm not full-blown sick...yet (I'm knocking on every wood-ish item I can find!)

  • the opportunity to take a trip to DC with some very excited 5th first trip there...pretty pumped!
  • being able to spend some time with Byrne on her big 25th yesterday

  • the fact that tomorrow is Friday :)

  • the fact that my kiddos are so VERY excited about learning about pioneers and the Oregon Trail...they're eating it up

  • getting to be a part of LA's "batch of fun" at the beach last weekend

  • the pretty new ring I got at Target...what can I say, it spoke to me...and it was $4, so it reeeeaaally spoke to me


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Bust a move

Sometimes, you hear a song and this uncontrollable feeling comes over you. You have no choice but to start dancing...hard. I never want to look back on my life and regret not dancing more. If I ever danced around like a myself...and I'm not saying that I do...but if I did...these are two of the tunes that would move me:

Boys Like Girls..."The Great Escape"

OAR..."This Town"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I'm thankful that the bank closes at 4:00. I'm thankful that the bank lady who opened the door for me (just a crack, mind you, lest I barge on past her) suggested that I come back tomorrow on my lunch hour to get my form notarized. I'm thankful that I didn't laugh out loud. I'm thankful that there are people in this world who get a lunch hour. I'm thankful that Kinko's no longer notarizes. I'm thankful that I wasted an hour trying to take care of this today, and STILL. didn't. get. the. dadgum. thing. notarized. I'm thankful that I decided against doing this Monday when I had the day off. I'm thankful that I procrastinated and this form is supposed to be turned in tomorrow...notarized.

Sigh. Vent over. I feel at least 40 % better now.

Today I'm (actually) thankful for:
  • family and friends
  • the fact that tomorrow is Friday :)
  • my upcoming trips to the beach and DC :)
  • the chance to celebrate LA's rapidly waning singleness with a "batch of fun" (Kate, that's always, ALWAYS, going to be funny.)
  • stressful days...only because they make me appreciate the peaceful ones that much more
  • the fact that, even though I'm busier right now than I like to be, it's because I have friends, fun plans, a job, all that good stuff
  • "SNL: Best of the 2000s" on right it!
  • lots and lots of sunshine, and more in the forecast


Tuesday, April 13, 2010

I want to be a crab fisherman

Just kidding. I think it would be fun for a day. Ha, kidding again! I think it would be fun for an hour...tops. I don't like being cold or wet, and while I always enjoy a good boat ride, giant scary waves aren't my thing. I don't smoke, I hate coffee, I don't speak in a way that requires copious bleeps, and I'm not fond of staying up for days on end; I'm pretty sure all of those are job requirements. Despite all that, I'm hooked on "Deadliest Catch". I'm not an avid TV watcher, but I'm willing to get in touch with my inner couch potato for the night.

I've watched it since college, and feel like the guys on the show are family friends. Does that make me a weirdo? I'll ponder that. I'm especially interested in watching this season because it'll be Captain Phil's last season. He died a few months ago and will definitely be missed on the show; he was one of my favorites. Tonight's agenda: couch, "Deadliest Catch", and a plate full of crabby goodness (if I liked seafood...and I don't...soooo, scratch that). Couch, "Deadliest Catch", and something decidedly non-crabby...happy Tuesday :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Revolutionary Road...and something way more cheerful

I rented this movie over the weekend and was pretty excited about it. I'd meant to see it when it was out in theaters but never did. I love Kate and Leo together. Since I saw "Titanic" 3 times in the theater and let it affect my early adolescent soul so profoundly, I figured I'd love this one, too. Uh, WRONG! It's about a couple in the 1950s who have bought into the "Leave It to Beaver" lifestyle: house in the suburbs, 2 kids, husband works in the city, wife is a homemaker, etc. The couple are unhappy with their stereotypical life and set out to change it. I knew that part; no surprise there. I just had no idea how dark this movie was. I spent two hours watching two people fight and come totally, completely, hideously unraveled. It was one of those movies that, when the credits roll at the end, you think, "Are you kidding me????" In their defense, Kate and Leo did a phenomenal job with their characters. The acting was amazing; I just hated (!) the story. My life has yet to return to normal; I feel like they owe me something.

On a happier note, I was able to meet sweet Kira in Montgomery for lunch yesterday. It was so nice to be able to catch up with her and enjoy a little time together before Miss Elizabeth arrives next month. She's going to be such a great mama to her little girl; I can't WAIT to meet her!

Bham Botanical Gardens

The weather has been gorgeous here lately, so I've been trying to spend as much time outside as possible. I decided to go to the Botanical Gardens the other day and enjoy the sunshine. It was so pretty; I'll definitely be going back. Here are some pictures I took:

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for...

  • family and friends
  • cooler weather and less pollen, thanks to the rain today
  • a much, much, MUCH better week after the supremely bad one last week
  • lots to look forward is really good these days and I'm thankful about the way everything has worked out...always for the best :)
  • a day off on Monday...woohoo, weather day!
  • my kiddos being so excited about their book does this teacher's heart good to see them absolutely thrilled about reading books and working nicely together
  • my health
  • Dirk fixing my taxes...avoid forking over $400 to the IRS? Yes, please.
  • long chats with dear friends this week
  • 30 Rock: "Liz, I don't have time to hear about whatever reject from 'The Island of Misfit Toys' you're currently dating."
  • beautiful spring flowers...knowing that they'll be gone sooner than soon, I decided to take some pictures on my walk today


Monday, April 5, 2010

Titan goes to Target

I had to write this down before I forgot...I ran into Target for a quick second this evening. I was cruising the toothpaste aisle when a blood-curdling scream grabbed my attention. I turned around to see a little boy (maybe 3 years old) laying in the floor, screeching, and hurling bottles of mouthwash across the aisle. I stared in alarm, and his mother looked on in a mix of horror and awe. He was pitching himself the fit to end all fits. (Apparently I used to throw awe-inspiring fits myself...the stuff of legends, I'm told.)

Poor Mama just stood there trying to decide what to do with her Listerine-chunking child. She finally said, "Titan, I don't know why you're acting like this! What's wrong?" Uh, allow me. Titan??? I'm a fan of naming your child something that 12 other kids in their class won't share, but seriously? The kid is probably so very displeased that he's named TITAN that he just couldn't take it anymore. It might have also just hit him that he'll never find a little license plate with his name on it at Alvin's Island down at the beach, and he decided to fight back. Regardless, I hit the road and left Titan to his tantrum. I must admit, I said a silent prayer of thanks when I got back to my Titan-free home :)

Easter Sunday

What a fabulous weekend! Beautiful weather, dyeing eggs with Mom, listening to bluegrass/Big Joe and cooking with Daddy, Easter Sunday mass, and lunch with most of the fam...busy but wonderful. Easter is one of my very favorite holidays. I love the traditions, seeing everyone in new Easter clothes, and going to church. What I love most, though, is celebrating the fact that we are so very loved that Jesus was willing to give up his life so that we could have a second chance. I love it. Reflecting on that leaves me humbled every time, and I think that's something we could all use a little more of.

Friday, April 2, 2010

The Most They Ever Had

I just finished reading this book:

It's written by Rick Bragg, who is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. My mom told me for a long time that I would love his books, and true to form, I fought her on it. I don't know why I insist on doing that! The lady may know me better than I do...she's always right. Always. Anyway, Rick Bragg is a professor at UA who writes stories about life in blue-collar Alabama. This one is about the generations of people who worked in the old cotton mill in Jacksonville, AL, barely scraping by. I find it fascinating to read about days gone by. I was also humbled by how these folks were able to find bright spots in what seem to be very hard, meager lives.

I've read three others (All Over but the Shoutin', Ava's Man, and Somebody Told Me), and I'm hooked. His books are pretty gritty and sometimes unpleasant, but they paint a such a clear picture of the rural South "back in the day". There's one more I haven't read (The Prince of Frogtown) so I plan to jump on that one soon. I hope ol' Rick cranks out another one ASAP; I'm about to catch up with him!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for...

  • my family and friends--They love me, advise me, support me in my endeavours, provide endless hours of laughter and entertainment, aren't afraid to put me in my place when I get out of line, rejoice in my successes, and offer their shoulders when life lets me down. They know everything about me and love me anyway...quite a feat! Other people pop in and out of my life, but it's nice to know that I have true-blue folks I can always count on.
  • some upcoming fun trips and events to look forward to
  • being able to celebrate new jobs, new houses, weddings, and first babies with some dear friends over the next few months
  • the fact that tomorrow is Friday :) :)
  • the fact that summer break is 2 months away :) :) :)
  • delightful spring weather and more daylight in the evenings (so I can walk after work)
  • maybe, possibly, sorta kinda making a decision about grad school...maybe...possibly...sorta kinda