Sunday, November 30, 2008

Day 30 NaBloPoMo and Thanksgiving Memories

This has been another full day. Two grandchildren, three daughters, two son-in-laws and a husband who was feeling less than great proved to be a stressful mix of people at times since the weather didn't cooperate and everyone had to be in the house all the time. But now the house is quiet. Two children, two daughters and two son-in-laws have left for their homes leaving a void not only in my house but in my heart. I enjoyed every moment of the noise, the cooking, the dishes, the noise, the conversations, the games, the TV, the noise, the laughter, even the noise. I always feel sad when people leave --- (sigh)

The previous is my post from one year ago. Last year all three girls and theirs came to me for Thanksgiving. The noise and chaos where here. This year we all (minus one daughter who was missed) traveled to Albuquerque. So the noise and chaos were somewhere else, but now her house is empty except for a husband and a cat.

It is much easier being the one leaving than the one left behind. Robert and I had an early flight (6:00 AM) out of A-town and arrived without incident in BC by 11:30. Although I miss them all, there is not the same feeling of emptiness that I had when everyone left here.

We enjoyed four complete days of family and food. Carrie is a wonderful organizer and always has ideas for keeping everyone entertained. We didn't get to do all of them, but next time we might just venture down to the parade of lights or ride the train to somewhere or some other wonderful excursion she has available for any takers. Thanks Carrie for keeping us all busy.

Robert got his way with the remote which always makes him happy and he was nice to the grandchildren and put it on their shows some. Miss A and Mr. B were in fine form and we all enjoyed them greatly. I played a million games of giant pick-up sticks with A and built things with big Lego's with B. I managed to get in a little time with Guitar Hero, but that is much better when done with only an audience of one or none. Then all of us played with the Wii Music Maker. I would like to spend more time messing with it.

The shopping felt rushed even thought we spend four hours searching for items needed or wanted. It was fun being with my girls. The best was A though. In Old Navy, I found a little blazer in what appeared to be her size. I had her try it on and OMG it was perfect on her and she knew it. That blazer was n. o. t. coming off her. She wore it the rest of the time we were in the store and even did a spot dance wearing it while the rest of us shopped. I was keeping an eye on her without her knowing it. Her *professional jacket* as she called it inspired her to groove to the tune being played to keep shoppers happy. I must say she did an excellent job feeling the beat and had some excellent moves. When we checked out I had the cashier cut the tags off and she wore her new jacket the rest of the day.
This is my special memory for this year Abby and the blazer.

The meme where I say :: You think. It is always interesting to see if I match up with anyone. More often than not I don't --- Does that make me weird or them?????

  1. Sleepy :: Head

  2. Thanksgiving :: Over, but not forgotten

  3. Fifteen :: Sixteen

  4. Authority :: In charge

  5. Bangs :: too short or too long; never just right

  6. Curled :: or straight, that is the question

  7. Young man :: My doctor; they get younger every time I have to go :(

  8. Surprised :: OMG

  9. Mistake :: oops

  10. Handle it :: Make it go away; take care of it

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Day 29 Photo Hunt

The theme for this week's is metal. The cross below is at Groom, Texas. It stands close to Interstate Highway 40, which cut across the Texas panhandle and connects Amarillo with Oklahoma City and Albuquerque. The cross can be seen for miles and information about it can be found here. (The picture below was actually taken by my daughter, whose computer I am using for this post --- but I have several pictures similar to it in my collection.)

I have seen this cross many times since it was erectd in 1995, but have only stopped once. It is an amasing sight and worth the visit if you are ever on I40 heading east or west.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Day 28 Haiku Friday

Huge sales everywhere you look
Stores open early.

What deals will be found
That will ease the burden this year
So joy can be shared?

To all who will shop
What you seek I hope you find
I plan to sleep in.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Day 27 Thursday Thirteen #21 What to Do On Thanksgiving Day

1. Frist thing to do is count all your blessings. A good time to do this is just before you roll out of bed and the rest of this list gets in the way.

2. Check on the grandchildren. If they are still asleep then quickly take a shower and prepare for the day.

3. Chech with daughter about what you can do to help in the kitchen; this is important since you are at her house.

4. Suggest she wash the turkey, removing all the gibblets from both cavities. (They aren't so good if you cook them in the paper sacks.)

5. As she puts the turkey in the oven be sure the oven is set for the correct time and temperature and then greet the grandchildren as the come in to *help*.

6. Help serve the grandchildren a breakfast full of carbs and sugar so they will be wound up for the rest of the day.

7. If the weather is pretty take grandchildren to the park, if not drag out games and toys to play with with them.

8. About 10:30 suggest that daughter begin prapartations of other foods such as the dressing and the fruit salad for the meal to be served about 1:00. Ignore the comments she makes about she knows what she is doing.

9. Give the grandchildren snacks to hold them over until the noon meal you know is going to be late.

10. Make a run to the grocery store to get the items that daughter forgot to buy (you knew this was going to happen).

11. Help in the kitchen while telling husband that he doesn't get to watch the pre-game show because the grandchildren want to watch the parade.

12. Help daughter set the table and make final preparation for the meal. Greet her in-laws as they come in with the rolls for the meal.

13. Pause and give thanks for being able to share a fabulous meal with family and friends. (Even if it was chaotic getting it all ready.)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Day 26 Been Doing It for Fifty Year

Long day today. It has been one of those *good* days. Work went good. The plane trip was good. Being with my daughter is good. Anticipating the days ahead -- good.

A quick story.

Yesterday I had to pass through the gym during the one short break I get each day. The fifth grade was in P.E. jumping rope. There were several groups turning the rope while others ran in jumped then ran out.

As I walked by a group of girls they started to stop, but I told them to keep turning and I'd see if I could still jump. They thought it was hilarious that I was going to jump. I got in and finally convinced them to turn the rope faster. They were going so slowly it was hard to get the rhythm. We laughed and then I moved to a group that was all boys. They issued a challenge to jump with them. So jump I did.

Right after P.E. I have a group of these 5th grade students. As I was walking with them for a water break one boy turned to me and said, "So, Mrs. Bain, how long you been jumping rope?"

That question made me laugh. I told him I really hadn't thought about it, but if I had begun jumping rope with I was about nine I had been jumping rope for fifty years. His reponse was simply, "Wow."

Hard to believe I've done anything for fifty years.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Day 25 Hands Can Do So Many Things

When the coin was flipped it came up heads and the topic is hand(s). Anything you can do with your hand(s). Heads means freedom to write whatever/however you feel inspired to about the topic. When I taught one of the writing exercises I had my students do was list verbs about a noun then put them into verse to form a poem. Here is my attempt at that assignment.

Hand Can Do Many Things

Hands can do many things
Applaud a job well done
Sooth a fevered brow
Point out the right way

Hands can do many things
Stir a dough for cookies
Paint a beautiful portrait
Swat the bottom of a wayward child

Hands can do many things
Dial a phone to just say, "hello"
Type a message full of news
Write a love note never sent

Hands can do many things
Wipe away all kinds of tears
Snap a warning loud and clear
Clench in rage at injustice

Hands can do many things.

Something Extra

You Are Mashed Potatoes

Ordinary, comforting, and more than a little predictable

You're the glue that holds everyone together.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Day 24 100 Word Challenge Time

Velvet Verbosity's word this week is Time. And the time for the meeting between Hank and June Ann is set. She isn't happy about it and depending on VV word next week Hank's plan will be reveled.


Of course I have time to meet with you,” June Ann replied the smile leaving her face. This was not who she wanted to talk and not who she wanted to meet with. Her position as head of the Tribune forced her to do things she didn’t necessarily want to do. Meeting with Hank Derby just happened to be one of those things.

Hurriedly she made her way across the small parking lot as the wind stirred up debris wondering how she had been talked into meeting him here at the Bar and Grill. This had better be good or this time he’d get a big piece of her mind.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Day 23 Huge Success and Unconscious Mutterings

Yesterday was Robert's 60th birthday. We have never made a big deal of his birthdays. It is usually just a "Happy Birthday" the morning of and maybe a cake and small present with the evening meal. Or we would go out to eat.

This year needed something more special. I mean 60 is some sort of mile stone isn't it? When asked what he wanted to do about it several weeks ago he stated that going to Hunan's with *the group* would be fun. So that is what I set out to make happen.

It was a little rocky at first. When I mentioned it to a couple of our group members --- this is not an official club, just the people we hang with at Church --- they weren't sure they would be around. I fretted a little, but kept at it. Thinking all the time that the one thing he wanted I wouldn't be able to give him.

But on Wednesday last week everyone said they could go and Bro. Mike had reserved the bus for us to use to travel together -- Hunan's is about 60 miles from here but so worth the drive for. I called and made the arrangements with the restaurant on Thursday for a group of 14 and yesterday evening we met together at five in the parking lot.

Funny how a group of 50 and 60 year old people become like 14 and 15 year olds when you put them on a bus. We talked loud, we laughed, we saw something sail through the air but nobody did it, and the bus driver wouldn't stop for ice cream.

The food and conversation at the restaurant was great. Everyone had a wonderful meal with lots of left overs. Then we rode home. The only down thing was the Tech/OU ballgame. YIKES!!

You say :: I think

  1. Spit it out :: just say it

  2. Shadow :: a tall skinny me

  3. Database :: brain

  4. Expression :: *the look* or just something to say

  5. Boss :: tell what to do

  6. Baby :: makes three

  7. Mystic :: magical

  8. Kate :: and Ally (isn't that an old TV show?)

  9. Boobies :: breast

  10. Raid :: plunder

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Day 22 Photo Hunt Reflection

Today's theme is reflections. Hard one for me. I have no cool pictures of mountains reflected in the lake below, or rainbows in a car mirror like here. None I found nothing looking back at me in a reflection like here.

I'm sure they are there; I just couldn't see them. But I did reflect on life a bit. Today is Hubby's 60th birthday. I've been with him for 30 of those years. As I reflect on those years together I thought about all the changes we have been through, both physically and emotionally. I'll just share two pictures. One from years ago and one more recent. Change is obvious in pictures like these.

You might want to stop and reflect on the past. The way things were, how they are now and how you've gotten to where you are today. Then stop and give thanks. I did.

This picture of Robert and me was taken in the 1980s at a Doggie Day Bar-B-Q.

And here are Robert and I in September on a cruise right before Ike.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Day 21 Haiku Friday --- A Plea for Two Friends

Sad new came this week
Things I didn't want to hear
Heart ache for two friends.

One in Kansas lives,
A tiny lump in her breast
Wasn't one but two.

A biopsy showed
Cancer cells are present
Even in lymph nodes.

Then news from Austin
Great joy, in her womb a babe
But some thing's not right

Something dreadful wrong
This tiny one may not survive
Both parents' hearts break.

Unanswered questions
That both friends seek answers to.
"Please, God, help them both."

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Day 20 Thursday Thirteen #20 -- A Bit of Silliness

A few weeks back my daughter and I had a quick lunch at the local KFC/Taco Bell. We both opted for the Taco Bell menu. When the meals came we were asked if we would like some hot sauce. Of course we answered yes and received a hand full of the little packets; some hot and some mild. On the front of each packet is a little message as if the packet were speaking to you. For some reason these packets tickled my funny bone and so today I share the humor from these little packets of sauce.
1. Mild, "Can I drive?"
2. Hot, "The feeling is mutual."
3. Hot, "Help! I can't tell where I am. It's dark and I can hear laughing."
4. Mild, "At night the sporks pick on me."
5. Mild, "Will you scratch my back?"
6. Hot, "Thanks for rescuing me. Fire was getting on my nerves."
7. Mild, "Ketchup? Oh puh-leese."
8. Mild, "Scratch & Sniff: Gotcha!"
9. Hot, " I'm taking the day off. See next packet."
That's all of those so here are the other fast food places I frequent.
10. Sonic --- Their brown bag specials make a wonderful supper to grab on the way home from handbell practice.
11. What A Burger --- I like their 2 piece chicken strip dinner. Just the right amount.
12. Pizza Hut --- Not exactly fast food, but a meat lovers thin and crispy, yummmm.
13. Dairy Queen --- Can you say Blizzard? My favorite is a Banana Split Blizzard or the Extreme Chocolate.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Day 19 Wordless Wednesday -- The Day After Thanksgiving 2007

I'll get to be with these two icing lovers again this year --- We may just have to build another gingerbread house this year.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day 18 An Autumn Memory for Heads or Tails

Heads -- An Autumn Memory

Go back in time to when our oldest son, Gene, is a senior in high school. He plays tight end or wide receiver for the local high school team. He's good. A tall, lanky boy. Full of himself and willing to put it all on the line for his team.

Dad and step mom (me) were at every game. We traveled all over the Texas panhandle usually dragging three not so enthusiastic daughters with us. We sat on cold metal bleachers during pouring rain, icy cold winds, blowing snow, and beautiful nights with full moons so close they could have been hit by a soaring footfall. We drank hot chocolate that was just barely warm, ate soggy hot dogs, and lots of candy from concession stands. And we cheered, often not being able to talk above a whisper on Saturday.

We won district, bi-district, regionals and went on to quarter-finals before being defeated. It is the regional game that I remember best. The opponents are the Hornets. My old high school. I want this game more than any other game they have played. A day or two before the game I talk to Gene and tell him how much a win would mean to me personally. He gave me a slow grin and said, "It's yours."

It was a close game. I don't remember the exact score (I'm sure Robert or Gene do.) but at half time I went across the field to visit with some old high school friends who had sons playing. I told Susan that we were going to win. Gene was going to see to it. We laughed about it and I returned to my seat for the second half. And on one of the prettiest pass plays I've ever witnessed Gene ran way down the field, stretched out his full length, pulled the ball in and landed on his stomach with the ball in the end zone to win the game.

Those were awesome autumn days. Cheering for the Bobcats, for Gene, at all those games.

Autumn is still football, I just don't go sit on those cold bleachers anymore.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Day 17 100 Word Challenge -- Intuitive

The word for 100 Word Challenge this week is intuitive. I've continuted the story started last week. Now we meet June Ann, that long legged, blue-eyed, spit-fire that Hank mentioned last week. (Here for that bit of writing.)


June Ann had met Hank at the Economic Development committee meeting. There was an intuitive feeling that something wasn’t as it seemed. He seemed a little too sure of himself.

Her daddy had taught her how to judge people, but he hadn’t taught her how to keep her mouth shut. She had probably said too much that evening with Hank there. But he had been so --- so smug.

The phone ringing brought her out of her reverie, “Editor’s Desk,” she said smiling to herself. Inheriting this paper had changed her plans. Now more than ever this little town was home and she was working hard to keep it moving forward without loosing itself.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Day 16 -- Random Happenings, Unconscious Mutterings

The handbell group that I'm part of was part of the services today. We rang the Call to Worship and the Offertory. Overall both pieces in both services were well received, but I had a hard time with the Call to Worship in the first service. I think it was because we were so rushed in practice this morning and when we played I just didn't feel calm and centered. I know this isn't about me, but I always want to do my best and I just don't feel like I did.

Robert is gone today. He left about 9:30 to go with our travel agent over to check the Conquest, the cruise ship we will be sailing on with the children this summer. When I signed us up Lee asked if we would be interested if a tour came available. Of course we were, it just happened to fall on this day. Since I didn't feel I could not be at church, I sent Robert without me.

It was 36oF this morning at 7:00 a.m. This is the coldest we have been thus far. We will have a few days colder, but not many. The best part though is that the sun is shining brightly, not a cloud in the sky and NO wind. This is the kind of day I really enjoy.

I have a bear pinned on the material to cut out and stitch up. It will be an all white bear made from an old bed spread. The kind that is woven with French knots in a design on it. I've never made a bear from this type material before. I'm always a little apprehensive about how a new bear will turn out. Even more so when I'm using new materials. Fingers crossed it goes well.

I say :: You think

  1. Please stop :: bickering; or and think; or the music These all went through my head. The word bickering and the phrase and think are from when the girls were little and to some degree with my job now. Isn't there a song something about Please stop the music or just stop the music?

  2. Move over :: your crowding me What I said to Robert last night. He was crowding me while sleeping. He woke up thinking I was crowding him on his side of the bed. Surprise, surprise, surprise.
  3. Sweet as :: apple pie That's a nice Southern expression. To pinch a babies cheek and comment, "She's as sweet as apple pie."

  4. Bet :: wager Ever *bet chur bottom dollar* I have when I'm 100% certain about something.

  5. Mad about :: nothing, absolutely nothing today It isn't often that there isn't some little something nagging at me. Today was just one of those good days when all is right with the world. Praise God.

  6. It’s over :: finished I always think of Judge Judy --- I didn't watch that show often (who needed to?) but she used the expression. "It's over, put a period and move on." I like that. More people need to do it.

  7. Intend to :: get around to Something I'm bad about saying. I intend(ed) to, just didn't get to it.

  8. Blame :: his fault What is wrong with many of our children. They want to find someone else to blame for everything that goes wrong in their lives.

  9. Jefferson :: Davis Honestly that is the first thing that popped into this blonde mind. Not sure what he did in history, I just know he was important. Okay, I Googled him, seems he was president of the confederate states during the Civil War. I knew that name rang a bell for a reason.

  10. Heartless :: villein The character Snidely Whiplash from the Dudley Do Right show came to mind. He was heartless. Of course, many people feel that way about bankers, but I have a different opinion there.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Day 15 -- Photo Hunt Ruined

The theme for this week is ruined. This is our ruined well house at the place we had outside of Danevang. The details of the fire that destroyed this structure and all it contents follow the pictures.

The fire happened in May 2005. It was a dry spring that year. The grass under the fence was tall and brittle. We had cut down an old pecan tree and Robert wanted to burn the stump out.

On a still Saturday, he set the stump on fire, but then remembered he had told a friend he would come out and help him on his place. He popped into the house and told me he had lit the stump and to check on it occasionally. This was about 10:00. About 11:00 I thought I would attend a Pampered Chef party a friend was having. As I got to the car to leave I thought about that stump. I poked my head around the edge of the well house and saw one thin line of smoke lazily make it way up. I thought to myself, "That fire is going out. I'm late, I'm leaving."

About an hour into the party my cell phone rings. It is Robert's former boss. He wants to know where Robert and I are. Wondering why he needed him, I told Todd, Robert was helping a friends and I was at a party. At that point he tells me he has just driven by our place and two fire trucks were there and black smoke was boiling up.

Exit me from the party. I was about ten miles from the house and I made that ten miles in record time all the time calling Robert's cell phone and leaving him messages.

When I pulled up the fire department from El Campo was pulling out and the Danevang fire department was rolling up hoses in preparation to leave.

I couldn't believe my eyes. About all I could say was, "Oh, my goodness. Dear God."

I got to visit with the fire chief and a deputy sheriff. I kept thinking he was going to give me a ticket of some sort. Mostly for being so stupid as to leave a burning stump (even if there was only a little tiny thin puff of smoke). He didn't; part of me wishes he had.

A breeze had fanned the fire which blew into the grass where it followed the fence line to the well house that was insulated with Styrofoam. Now Styrofoam is a wonderful insulator, but it burns easily and it burns hot. Hot enough that all the lawn equipment inside the well house had their tires totally melted and burned up. We lost several thousand dollars worth of stuff --- lots of it junk, some of it good. Had to have a new well pump put in along with a new water filtration system. As bad as it was it could have been worse. The garage, storage barn and house were all spared from our mistake.

We felt/feel stupid that we did this. We have been teased by all of our children over it. We have been reminded endlessly about all the Smokey Bear safety rules concerning fire. Robert has been banned for life from playing with fire and I have no idea where any matches are.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Day 14 Haiku Friday -- Gentle Sounds

I'd probably get in trouble for this if hubby read my blog, but since he doesn't I feel pretty safe.

Coming from the couch
Hark, gentle sounds of snoring
The song of day's end

The cause of this comatos state may have been the huge plate of pancakes smothered in butter and syrup with a good half pound of bacon on the side. All washed down with a quart of milk.

Tonight was the annual Kiwanis Club Pancake Supper. This turned out to be quite the social event to attend. (Oh, for those who read Wednesday's blog I was dressed appropriately. Jeans, cute black flats, long sleeved tee with a short fly away jacket.)

The supper was to last from 5:00 to 8:00. Robert and I went about 5:30 thinking we would be eating with what we lovingly call *the blue-hair set*. No we were eating with BC. We stood in line -- for pancakes -- for about 20 minutes visiting with many people we know from Lions Club, church, and chamber functions.

When we did get in we were served our fresh from the grill pancakes that were as big as the plate by our preacher. I didn't know he was a Kiwanis member.

A young man, high school age, heaped bacon on our plates from a cooler. As I was served the he said, "May I serve you bacon, Ma'am." I nodded my head trying not to burst out laughing at his attempt at an English butler accent. "I hope you have an accomodating evening," he continued. At that I burst out laughing. I think I hurt his feeling because he ask if he had said something wrong. I reassured him that what he said wasn't wrong, it just was funny considering where we were. We quickly went to find seats; stopping only to get drinks --- coffee, milk, or colas of several kinds.

We sat across from a couple we didn't happen to know, but were soon best friends with. Then headed home, stopping at HEB for a couple of birthday cards. What an evening.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Day 13 Thursday Thirteen #17 I Read It in the Paper

In this small Gulf coast town that I live in the local paper comes out twice a week. Each Wednesday several copies are delivered to the school and the fifth grade reading teacher shares (gives me) a copy. I thought I would share 13 interesting, not so interesting events, from this weeks paper.

1. Head Line : County veterans honored Tuesday The article was complete with two color pictures. One of WWII vet being seated by two high school girls and the other of a WWII vet who was given a high school diploma he missed out on due to being drafted in Feb. 1945.

2. Quote: A nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces, but also by the men it honors, the men it remembers. John F. Kennedy This was just a filler at the end of a column.

3. Page 2: Obituaries There were five. Each had a lengthy write-up praising their lives.

4. Ad: Janik's Meat Market *Deer Processing* Come on down if you happen to kill a deer. We have just the place to have that deer meat processed.

5. 2008 Bubba Fest will take place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, November 15 at Cattails in Matagorda. There will be spam sculpting, a casserole contes, and Chateau Bubba wine. For more info call --- --- ---- I'm not making this up. It is in the paper.

6. Letter to the editor: This tickled me. I wish I copy the whole thing, but the gist of it is that we need to be better drivers. The line that made laugh simple states. *Drivers believe that a yellow light means speed up and drive faster.* Uh aren't those the same????

7. Page 6 was devoted to church news. Ebenezer Baptist Chruch is having a Harvest Crusade on Sunday Nov. 16. I didn't know there was an Ebenezer Baptist Church here. I don't think I've ever heard of a church call Ebenezer. That is just fun to say.

8. Sneary-Lucas wedding was written up. The Anderson-Perez and the Seiben-Dodson engagements were announced. All are young and looks so happy. I wish all three couples happiness.

9. Tribune's Thanksgiving Coloring Contest turkey was printed for childer no older than 10 years of age to color and return by Nov. 19.

10. Headline: Tigers back in playoffs after 10 long years This is the Tidehaven Tigers. That is the school district I work for. Pretty exciting stuff, but I'm afraid they'll just get to play the one game. We are the third team going out of district playing a first place team. The odds aren't in our favor. GOOOOO TIGERS!!

11. Tribune Classifieds: The deadline for Garage Sales to run on Wednesday is Monday before noon. Be sure to come in before the deadline in order to ensure your ad runs inWednesday's paper. I wonder if that works. Telling people to come in before noon. I bet they have some come in after noon and they still get in. There are twenty Garage Sales listed for this weekend. I may have to check a couple of them out.

12. The Shoe Craze is having 20% off selections Fall Shoes and 15 % off Evening Shoes. Wow and spring and summeer shoes $15 each. I think I may head there after work.

13. And of course the weather. Thursday: Partly cloudy. A low in the mid 50s. A high in the mid 70s. Friday: Sunny. A low in the low 50s. A high in the upper 70s. Sounds like nice weather on the way.

There you have it. A quick look through a small town news paper.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Day 12 Heads or Tail Should I Wear This or That?

Head or Tails is supposed to be posted on Tuesday; I forgot. So here it is a day late. This week was, well Heads or Tails. Writers choice of either wear or where. Or if I understand the directions, both. I choose wear.

What to wear is always a delimma for me. I pride myself on being appropriately dressed for most occasion. This is sometimes hard because I don't always know what would be appropriate.

Can anyone tell me for sure what dressy casual is. That is the dress recommendation that came on the invitation to the company Christmas party a couple of years ago. I decided that it meant that Robert should wear a jacket with a nice knit tee or an open collar sport shirt. Definitely no tie. For me it was harder. I finally put on a pair of slacks (casual) with nicer fine gage knit Christmas sweater with sequins and heels (dressy). That was pretty much what everyone was wearing.

Another suggested dress that leave lots of room for interpertation is just the word casual when going to a just about anything. Does that mean jeans and a tee shirt or does that mean nicer slacks and a funky little jacket?

According to Robert I tend to over think all what I wear. He says just put something on and let's go.

Do I always get it right and wear the right thing? No, but most of the time I err on the side of being over dressed rather than under dressed and for me that is a good thing.

Here are Robert and I dancing onboard a cruise ship. We were wearing the appropriate clothing and having a wonderful time.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Day 11 When It Rains It Pours

It rained yesterday and then it rained some more and if that wasn't enough it rained some more.

It wasn't just a soft gentle rain either ---- It RAINED. From about 8:00 am until 11:00 am when I'm my busiest with students coming every thirty minutes or me having to meet students every thirty minutes it was like someone was dipping up 5 gallon buckets of water and dumping it on top of the school.

We have covered walk ways, but with a slight breeze blowing only about three fourths of the water was stopped from getting on me or the students. Our feet were wet and we, if not exactly drenched, were very damp.

Wet students are not able to pay as close attention as dry students. They whine because they are wet or cold or hot or wet or wet or wet. They would have stayed outside and played in that wet, but to sit in the room was asking just too much of them.

And the noise didn't help either. This was not a quiet rain. LOUD was what it was. We actually had to raise our voices to be heard over the sound of the rain pounding on the roof. It was a little unnerving for me too. A couple of the younger children were actually frightened. That forced me to put on a braver front than I felt.

The upside of this rain is that we were really needing rain and we never lost electricity, so we had computers. (Much of my teaching is done via the computer.)

We could have rain again today. I think I'll wear different shoes.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Day 10 A Memorable Party

I was looking around Blogspot just a few minutes ago and came across a site that I want to share.
It is here. It is called The One Minute Writer. Each day you are given a prompt and a timer and asked to write for one minute.

What a wonderful way to come up with ideas for blogging the month of November. I read through several of the prompts and each one basically led to some personal event in your life or something you might consider doing.

Today's (well when you read this it will be yesterday's) prompt is *Write about a memorable party or gathering you attended.*

I instantly thought of the surprise party Robert threw for me on my 40th birthday. I think what made it so memorable is that it truly was a surprise. Even the girls didn't know about it.
We had to go to Dumas that day and close on a house we had just sold. I remember being upset with him because we didn't even take time to celebrate after the closing by going out to eat. He said we had to get back home to go to some hokey meeting. I was pouting and grumbly when he pulled up to the fire station (the center of all activity in the little town of 400 people where we then lived).
When we walked in everyone shouted "Surprise and Happy Birthday." My reaction -- well according to Robert I turned to him --- slugged him on the arm and said, "You shit." The DJ began playing then and I had a wonderful time with the whole town celebrating turning old or what I thought at the time was old.

I Say --- You Think

  • Coverage :: of the election, sports, the new media in general likes to think it gives us up to day coverage of everything -- even things we don't really need to be a part of
  • Cynical :: how I feel about politicians; CEO's of large companies; and evidently the news media judging from my last comment

  • Gust :: west Texas winds that blew through my childhood

  • Improvised :: most meals I cook; have I mentioned I really don't cook much

  • V :: victory

  • Guests :: what I wish I had more of; maybe if I were a better hostess maybe actually prepared things for them

  • Brutal :: winters in the north

  • Grant :: allow

  • Pull :: push; if there is a pull sign on a door I will invariably push on the door before pulling

  • Streaming :: video; although I don't understand what one really is I've heard the expression often in association with the internet and it popped into my head
  • Sunday, November 9, 2008

    Day 9 100 Word Challenge -- Resurrect

    Velvet Verbosity is back and the challenge this week is the word resurrect. The following paragraph is the opening of a story that is playing around in my head. I'm not sure I can write it -- I'm usually better at beginnings than endings, but I'm going to try to used each of VV's word prompts to put this story together.

    Hank Derby was ready to put his plan to work in this dusty, old town. It needed someone to resurrect it and he was just the man to do it. He was going to set this place on its ear, put it on the map, and make a name for himself. But first he had to convince her to help him. He had never met anyone quite like that long legged, blue-eyed ball of spit fire, but he was ready to give it his best James Dean try. He couldn’t believe that girl didn’t realize what she was sitting on. But with his help, she soon would.

    Saturday, November 8, 2008

    Day 8 Photo Hunt -- Together

    This week's theme is together. I snapped this picture of bashful flamingos at the Fort Worth Zoo in March of 2007. Tho they were all together, they didn't seem very interested in one another. Isn't that how we often are? In the crowd but not really interested in it.

    Friday, November 7, 2008

    Day 7 Haiku Friday A Gray Wet Cloak

    The past couple of morning Robert's and my walk has begun in the dark with a light fog around us. By the time we get back home the sun is beginning to rise and the fog dissipate. We don't have the colors of fall here that many of my blogger friends from from points east and north have shared in photographs. But I have taken my fog and those images and drawn inspiration. Thank you to each person who has posted a beautiful autumn picture. Your photography means a lot to me.

    A dull wet blanket
    Wraps the world in dripping gray
    Fall's colors hidden.

    Weakly come the sun,
    Struggling to free the brillance,
    To throw off that cloak.

    Once again in light
    Colors, red - orange - gold
    Thrill the viewing eye

    Thursday, November 6, 2008

    Day 6 Thursday Thirteen #18 -- I Smile Because

    This has been a long week. I could grinch about a lot of things, but I'm trying to be more positive about the things going on in my life. Instead of the thirteen things that are out of whack at the moment, I decided to find thirteen things I've had to smile about.

    1. With the way my hair is cut now it is hard to tell a good hair day from a bad hair day, so I call them all good hair days.

    2. I'm going to be fingerprinted tomorrow. A new thing for all public school personnel. Now if anything happens to me I can be identified by my fingerprints on record with the state.

    3. The price of gas was down to $2.10.9 last Sunday. Wha-whoooo cheap gas!

    4. The election is over and there will be no more political ads for a while anyway.

    5. Although I haven't lost any more weight, I haven't gained any either.

    6. We have had very pleasant weather the past few days. Cool mornings and warm afternoons. That means the kids get to play outside everyday.

    7. I've only had to cook one night this week. (Which could explain why I'm not loosing weight.)

    8. A student who was a wee bit of a pain to work with moved last Friday. Things are quiter without said student.

    9. I got a picture of grandchildren, A and B, playing in a pile of leaves outside the polling place yesterday via my cell phone.

    10. The water bill and electric bills were both down a little bit.

    11. Hubby put the dishes away out of the dishwasher and then reloaded it. (I got a good one in him.)

    12. I enjoyed going over to friends house for dessert last evening. She makes wonderful German chocolate pie.

    13. I live in the greatest country in the world!

    Wednesday, November 5, 2008

    Day 5 -- We Have a New President

    As if you haven't heard we have a new president. A new leader for our nation. A man who has promised change. A man for whom I will pray.

    Time will tell if the right decision was made. Only time will tell.

    Tuesday, November 4, 2008

    Day 4 Heads -- About the Crossing Guard

    I join memes because I find them fun and because they give me ideas for things to blog about. I'm not the most creative person around when it comes time to write, but is you give me an assignment or an idea I can usually run with it. So the Tuesday meme that I've found to be interesting in called Heads or Tails. This is a Heads week and the prompt is Guard. On a Heads week the writer can actually let her *guard* down and write or demonstrate the prompt in any manner chosen. As I contemplated guard the school crossing guard came to mind.

    Do any of you happen to remember these metal crossing guards that school used way back when. I remember, in the small town where I grew up, there was one placed in the street each morning and afternoon by the janitor, I believe, during my elementary school days. It reminded drivers to slow down and showed us where it was safe to cross the road. I don't remember having to cross that road very often. And for me there was a wee bit of a sense of envy of those who did cross by that magical metal man who kept them safe. To get to our house we just stayed on the same side of the street that the school was on and walked f o r e v er (I'm sure it wasn't as far as I thought it was). I don't think these type signs are used much any more -- or at least not here where I am.

    However, each morning on my way to work I pass through a school zone. At the traffic light in the middle of this zone is a crossing guard. This woman is there every morning and every afternoon with her stop sign. There have been many times I have stopped at a red light and watched her walk to the center of the street holding her sign then motion to the group of three or four students waiting on the corner to come across. When the students are all on the far side of the road she makes her way back to her side to wait for the next group. Most times the children are across and she is back on the curb before the light changes, but there have been times when the group of children is large that she has actually had to walk back after the light for those waiting with me has turned green. I wonder if she ever feels fear of a car not staying stopped. I wonder if she would like to have that metal policeman standing there to help protect her. I wonder what it would be like to be the crossing guard for a school on a busy street.

    Monday, November 3, 2008

    Day 3 -- A Little Game About a Cruise

    There is this little game called 4x4 that I came across at Losing Myself.

    The game is to open the picture file on you computer. Go to the fourth folder, open it, and post the fourth picture.

    This is the fourth picture I had in the fourth folder. That folder happen to contain the studio pictures we had taken on the cruise sponsored by the local Chamber of Commerce in 2006.

    This is the fun group we cruised with.
    I'm the one in red when nearly everyone else was in black.

    On this cruise we partied heartily. But we had a designated driver each time we did just in case someone was needed to steer the ship.

    Robert had his party on the beach in Progreso when we went there instead of Cozumel like we were expecting. We opted to go to a beach party were the Corona and rum punch were part of the package. Robert was enjoying the ice cold Coronas. He joined in the limbo contest and the beer drinking contest and lost them both, but celebrated his losses as if they were victories. I thought for a while I was going to have a little Mexican maid. (Maybe it was a good thing I was the DD on that occasion.)

    My party was on the ship the next night when I went out with *the kids*. They said they were going to the Magic Show and then to the midnight buffet, but we didn't make either. They decided to drop into a club on the way for a quick drink which led to another then another and the music was loud and the dancing was --- well it was. The captain of the ship showed up and one of the girls I was with got to flirting with him and we ended up partying with him and the first officer for a bit. (They were drinking water though -- so Robert wasn't needed to steer the ship.) Oh, Robert didn't go with us on this adventure. He was tired and went back to the cabin which was just as well because he doesn't like loud music that isn't country western.

    Yes, this was a fun cruise. One that will never be duplicated, but one that will always live fondly in my memory.

    What will the fourth picture in the fourth folder of your picture file be? It might surprise you and if you are doing NaBloPoMo it might just give you something to blog about.

    Sunday, November 2, 2008

    Day 2 Playing the Word Game & Some Random Ramblings

    This is a fun little word association game hosted here.

    I say ..... and you think .....?

    1. In love :: With my hubby -- I can't imagine life without him.
    2. Be my guest :: For dinner -- I'll pay -- I'm not cooking!
    3. Number one :: Texas -- the Texas/Texas Tech game is on as I type this so far TT has played a great game and is leading. Could there really be an upset? I hope so.
    4. Swallowed whole :: Pills
    5. 50 percent :: Off -- I love a good sale.
    6. Made in :: Japan -- Today it is more likely to be China though.
    7. Supplement :: Help
    8. Right for :: the moment Instant gratification is the name of the game and I'm too guilty of it myself.
    9. Endless :: Never ending
    10. Ceramic :: Figurine

    Now for some the Random Ramblings

    The Fall Festival was a success. I had an easy job -- collecting tickets at the drink stand. To help offset the cost we charge a minimal fee everything. Five tickets sell for $1 and drinks were 2 tickets. Nearly all the booths and games were only 1 ticket and food was as cheap as we could make it. I didn't hear anyone complaining. It is a cheap night of safe entertainment.

    Tech managed to pull off the upset with just seconds, make that one second, left in the game. I don't know what that will do the standings other than knock Texas out of number one. It will be interesting to see how the polls unfold in the next day or two.

    Work has been interesting. I got to leave early four days. When the students are doing benchmark test and going on field trips and being involved in D.A.R.E programs it is hard for me to have my students. The principal ask me Friday if I had any students after 3 o'clock. I assured her I did it was just that this past week had been an unusual one. She assured me she wasn't questioning what I was doing she just wanted to know why I was always leaving before 3:00. I only left when I had permission to and she is the one that grants that permission.

    This time change thing is getting so old. We got an extra hour of sleep tonight. But come Monday my body won't realize it. It is just screwy. I'm sure there are parts of the country where this all makes perfect sense, but to me it just doesn't seem all that necessary.

    Saturday, November 1, 2008

    Photo Hunt -- Blue & NaBloPoMo Day 1

    The theme for this week's is blue. Blue eyes, blue walls, blue skies, or blue feelings. These are the thoughts that instanly came to mind with word association, but of what should I post a picture was the question. I decided I'd post three of the four. The blue eye of my daughter taken by my son-in-law when I ask him to watch my camera for a moment when I left the table at a resturant, the blue wall of my guest bedroom makes the room inviting, a blue sky one morning when the moon was still high in the sky. The fourth, that feeling had after the event is over -- be it when the kids have all gone home, or I'm flying/driving home after a vistit with my folks, or the let down after a successful the dance, the parade, the carnival -- that moment not caught on film before you are ready to charge on into life.

    This is also the first day of NaBloPoMo. Have you joined? The goal is simply to post every day during the month of November. Something most of us do anyway. If you haven't already, join the fun today.