Meet Me on Monday Continues!

Even with Java being extremely busy, she has agreed to continue hosting Meet Me On Monday.  Here are the questions for this week:

1.  What are you wearing right now?
Right at this moment, I'm wearing my pj's. 
2.  Do you have any freckles?
 I have some freckles on my shoulders, but that's it.
3.  What is your favorite Lifesaver flavor?
4.  What is the last movie you saw in the theater?
Meet the Little Fockers.
5.  Would you rather live without tv or without music?
Without tv.  As much as I like tv, I love my music.  I don't think I could live without music.

Hope everybody had a good Monday!

Sunday Snippets- A Catholic Carnival

RAnn at This That and the Other Thing hosts "Sunday Snippets- A Catholic Carnival" every Sunday. Go check her out and see what others are highlighting this week. And, you don't have to be Catholic to check it out!
My entry for this week is on my Adoration post.

Then Sings My Soul

I haven't participated in this meme in a long time, but I wanted to share this song with you; we sang it last Sunday.  It's so incredibly beautiful; this is one of those songs that make me cry.

Friday Fragments

Mommy's Idea

~ Reading:  I had been trying to read "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo", but gave up when I saw that Netflix has it on their "instant watch" lineup.  It's in Swedish with English subtitles, but it was a much easier read than the book!  I think I had a hard time because I had it in paperback and they made the print so very little.  (No, this doesn't have anything to do with the fact that I'm getting older and may have to stop denying that I may need a little help in that department!)

~ Crazy.  Did y'all hear about the 10 year old kids in Arizona the other day?  There was a big gust of wind and one of the kids ended up 2 houses down, on the roof.  I haven't heard anything else, other than the child was in the hospital, so if anybody has any information, please share!

~ Sporadic.  Does anybody else have this problem?  There are weeks when I find it hard to get out a post every day during the week, but then there are other times when I can't seem to stop writing.  Like this week.  I had Tuesday's, Thursday's, and this post written before the day I posted them.  Now I'm wondering if I don't have another post or 2 stockpiled in my blog somewhere.

~ Confused.  The other day I was listening to a Christian Radio station.  They asked for people who did good deeds and gave time to charities to let them know.  There is a Christian musician from Nashville who is sponsoring a contest:  he will join the winner and work alongside him/her as well as give a concert.  That very same day, Father Christian posted this scripture:
Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them; otherwise, you will have no recompense from your heavenly Father. When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, so that your almsgiving may be secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you. (Matthew 6:1-4)
I knew there was some reason the spot on the radio made me uncomfortable.  While I think it's neat that the musician will be joining someone with their charitable work, I think it would've been better if they asked for people to nominate someone that they knew who were doing good things.

Some Speech/Language Talk

During my reads on Saturday, I came across a post that directed me to another blog, titled Your Child Talking.  This blog is written by a Speech/Language Pathologist, which I wasn't aware of at first.  I started to write a comment, but it turned out to be fairly long, so I thought I would just make my own post!
As a Public School Speech/Language Pathologist, it is very disheartening to have to tell a parent that their child's language isn't severe enough to warrant therapy, especially if that child is having difficulty in the classroom and the parents are searching for answers.  But, we have to abide by the state guidelines.  Private speech clinics/centers do not have to abide by the state guidelines, so that would be an option for the concerned parent.
The post addressed a child who was hesitant to speak out in class because he was having difficulty saying some sounds.  There are certain ages that a child is expected to say certain sounds.  For example, /p,b,m/ are the first sounds that are expected to be made, and 'th' is the last (at around age 9).  That being said, if a child is refusing to talk in class, that is a huge red flag.  We have to look at whether or not the speech/language deficit adversely affects his/her educational progress.  "Educational" does not just mean "academic"; it also includes "social, emotional, and vocational" aspects.  So, that child would be considered for eligibility for certification as speech impaired, regardless of whether or not the sounds are "developmental" at that time.  Generally, I try to wait as long as possible to refer a child for an evaluation, especially when it comes to saying their sounds.  Many times a child will correct a sound on his/her own without therapy.  And, with language, I am very hesitant to evaluate a child in Kindergarten during the first half of the year.  The reason for that is that Kindergarten is very language based, and, many students have never been in any kind of structured program, so I have to give them that exposure before I even think about certifying them.  Call me crazy, but  I have a problem with certifying students when they really aren't speech or language impaired.
Most states (I thought all of them had this, but maybe they don't) have some kind of "Birth to 3" program.  This program is an early intervention program to identify children who may need speech/language services, or some other kind of therapy/help.  The school system is responsible for children ages 3-21.  
If you have a child under the age of 3, and you're concerned about his/her speech & language skills, contact the health department or your pediatrician.  They should be able to steer you in the right direction for your local Birth to Three organization.  If your child is already 3 or older, contact your school system and ask them what the process is to have your child's speech and language screened.  If your child is already attending school, contact the Speech/Language Pathologist at your child's school. Even if your child is homeschooled or in a private school, the public school system is responsible for serving your child.
Below is a chart indicating when each sound should be mastered.  The only thing that I would modify is that the 'sh', 'ch', and 'zh' sounds should be on the 7...but that's just my opinion!  You may have to click on the picture to get a better look at the sounds.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Did you know there is a National Day of pretty much everything in the universe? February 23 happens to be National Inconvenience Yourself Day...when was the last time you were inconvenienced?
Gosh, I have no idea.  I'm sure if I sat and thought about it long enough, I could come up with something, but I just can't be inconvenienced like that at this time.  : )

2. When a room in your house needs painting who does the job?
I do.  After we painted the house before we moved in, I told CH that I was done painting...forever.  But, it looks like painting may be in my future with the remodeled bathrooms, plus some trim that needs to be repainted.
3. Are you friends with your cousins?
Unfortunately, I didn't grow up around my cousins.  We were in  Tn., they were in Tx.   We had a lot of fun every year or two when we got together, though.

4. Do you use an alarm clock? If yes-is it an actual alarm, music, or something else?
I use my cell phone as an alarm clock.  It's set to a nice, soothing tune that won't put me in a bad mood right off of the bat!

5. What do you put ketchup on?
If I get a hamburger out and they put ketchup on it, I'll eat it.  I don't put ketchup on anything. I'll put it on my plate and dip my french fries in it, but I prefer honey mustard.

6. What smells make you nostalgic?
Oh, there are so many!  This is weird, but the smell of plastic reminds me of Christmas.  I must've gotten something plastic one year that I really liked!  

7. Have you heard about the high school English teacher recently suspended as a result of some things she wrote in her personal blog? You can read the story here but in a nutshell she vented a lot of frustration onto her blog. She didn't mention individual students by name but she did make some harsh comments about kids in general and their parents.

What are your thoughts-If you're a parent is your child's teacher online and are you 'friend' or 'follower' there? If you're a teacher are you on facebook and do you accept or friend students on fb? How about their parents? If you're a student are you friends with your current or former teachers online? Do any of them have blogs you read? If you're a teacher or a parent do you ever use your blog as a place to vent your frustrations with our educational system? So much to discuss...
I don't accept parents of students as friends on facebook.  I suppose if someone wanted to find my blog, they could, but I don't advertise my blog address.  I'm also very, very careful about what I say in both places.  I would never use my blog as a place to voice my frustrations; I like my job too much!  
I do have a professional blog that is linked to my mountain school, but I've made sure the 2 blogs aren't connected.  I think that, as a school employee, you have to be extremely careful about what you say.  Children look up to us, and,  especially those of us who are in an elementary school, are molding these kids' lives.  A lot of these kids experience daily disappointment with the adults in their lives; they don't need it from the teachers, too.  
I understand the woman's frustrations, but you've got to be smart about the internet.  Once it's out there, it's out there.

8. Insert your own random thought here. 
Since the last question was about school, I've got to tell you what happened yesterday.  I have "speech procedures" , or a routine that we follow.  The students come in, we work on what they need to work on, they get their sticker on their sticker chart, then they line up at the door.  Yesterday, I had just finished working with one of my students (a second grader), and he got up (before he got his sticker).   He said, "Is that it?" and I said, "I guess so."  (I was hoping that he would remember the procedure and sit back down so that he would get his sticker.)  He said okay, then started out the door.  (My door will lock on its own after it's been shut a few times.)  As the door was closing, I mentioned that he must not have wanted his sticker today, and the door closed.  And locked.  Then, this child frantically tried to get the door back open.  The handle just kept going up and down extremely fast as I was trying to get to it to open it up!  I got the door open and reminded him he needed to follow the procedures, and he would get a sticker next time.  (Yes, I'm the mean one!)  This kid is so incredibly cute, so it was really funny to me!  But, I bet he won't forget the procedure again!


To a non-Catholic, Adoration must seem so very foreign and maybe even a little strange.  But, to a Catholic, it's the most beautiful, wonderful hour you could imagine.  It's an hour of peace and quiet, just you & Jesus.  During Adoration, I've cried, laughed, and even slept.  After the sleeping incident (this was when the boys were little), I talked to my mom about feeling guilty that I fell asleep.  Her response:  Jesus knew that I needed that and He gave me the peace to get some rest.  I was more than a little embarrassed when I went to the car and looked in the mirror: I had a big red spot on my forehead where I had rested my head on my hand.   I just kept thinking about the verse:  "Could you not watch one hour with me?" (Mt. 26:40)  Oh, the Catholic guilt.

There was one time when I came into the chapel out of the cold rain.  When I knelt down, it literally felt like someone put a warm heavy blanket over my shoulders.  It was the most amazing feeling in the world.  There were times when I felt my guardian angels kneeling beside me.  I can't even begin to tell you what that is like.

For Adoration, the consecrated host is housed in a monstrance.  Webster's defines "monstrance" as:
"a vessel in which the consecrated Host is exposed for the adoration of the faithful".  The monstrance is then placed in the "little house"...that's what I call it.  I'm sure there's a proper name for it, I just don't know what it is.
While the host is exposed, Jesus can not be left alone.  The goal is for the host to be exposed 24/7, with someone constantly in Adoration until the next coming of Christ.  When you are in the chapel for Adoration, you aren't suppose to leave until the next person comes in.  However, if you do have to leave for some reason, you are allowed to cover up the monstrance (or, in the case at this parish, close the doors).  When I've done Adoration in the past (in SC),  I only remember covering up the monstrance one time.  When I had to do that, I felt like I was letting Jesus down, like I thought there was something else more important than Him.  I realize that Jesus knew I had a family to take care of, but there still was a twinge of guilt.

Anyway, I had glanced over the Adoration openings in the bulletin for a while, but there weren't any times that I felt like I could commit to.  Then, a few weeks ago, a time that was perfect for me opened up.  Did I sign right up?  Uh, no.  I waited a couple of weeks to see if someone would take it.  No one did, so I figured I'd better start listening.  And, here's the kicker:  It's the same time I had when I started doing Adoration in SC.  Think He was telling me something?

I remember that our Parish had Adoration during Holy Week once when I was in high school.  This was before parishes were devoting a part of the church to Adoration; before Adoration was "big".  Daddy announced that he had signed the family up for an hour.  I was NOT happy.  Seriously.  I did not want to sit there for an hour with nothing to do.  But, honestly, after that hour was over, I felt incredible.  It was sooo worth it.  The worst part was that I had to admit my daddy knew what he was doing.

There is complete quiet in the Adoration Chapel.  Total and complete quiet.  During my hour, anyway.  It's comforting, calm, and peaceful.   It helps me get myself together for the rest of the work week.  It's the best way to spend an hour that I know.

Nothing Too Deep

Java from Never Growing Old has decided to take a break, so there won't be a "Meet Me on Monday" today.  : (  So, let's catch up on some tv and not get into any big, deep topics,  shall we?

I haven't been watching much trash tv lately.  I forget to watch American Idol when it's on, but when I do, I really, really like the chemistry between the judges this season.  I didn't watch last season; even though I love Ellen, I just didn't think she was a good choice since she wasn't a singer.  I'm not a big Steven Tyler fan, but I'm liking how he seems to have such a big heart and will belt out some notes here & there.  JLo is just really sweet, but she's all business when she needs to be. Randy is the big dawg, for sure!
I completely missed the whole "Real Housewives of Atlanta" this season, too.  I caught some episodes here and there on weekends.  NeNe is still my favorite.  I think I could hang out with her, as long as I didn't make her mad!  Did anybody watch the "Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills"?  I wasn't going to watch, but did see it when they had the "marathon" on.  Kim Richards is really flaky.  And Camille...I agree with Kyle on this one:  she is delusional.  Taylor really needs to consider getting that lip implant removed.  
This isn't what I consider "trash tv", but has anybody seen "Harry's Law"?  It's the new show with Kathy Bates as an attorney.  If you haven't seen it, it's worth watching.  The only thing is that it comes on Mondays at 10:00, so I usually fall asleep halfway through it.
Another good new show is "Off the Map", but I can't ever remember when it comes on.  One of the actors played on 'Friday Night Lights' as Matt Serecen.   It comes on Wednesdays, but again, it's at 10:00.  Why is it the good shows come on that late?
Have you watched any new shows lately that are worth watching?

My, How Time Flies!

Tomorrow is my 1st year "blogiversary".  Some people actually have their act together and have a give-away, but nope, not me.  I'm more of an "Oh my gosh!  I should have done that!" kind of girl.  So, instead of a give-away, I'm going to grace you with 10 things I've learned this past year through blogging:

1.  I'm not quite a boring as I thought!
2.  CH can learn a lot about me by reading my posts.
3.  I can get stuff from CH by mentioning that I'd like to have something in my posts.
4.  I live in a wonderful part of the USA.  (Although I already knew this!)
5. There are way too many books out there that I would like to read; I just don't have the time.
6.  If I need an opinion or suggestion, all I have to do is put it in a post and I'll get them.
7. Some people actually seem to care about my opinions.
8.  Most bloggers are the nicest people on earth.
9.  I can get great beauty tips by reading that I've never gotten before since I'm in an all-male household.
10. Bloggers will answer any question you have.  And I do mean "any question"!
11.  I've learned to pay attention to the little things during the never know when it will be a great post opportunity!

And the recipes!  Thank goodness there are people out there with cooking blogs!  My family thanks you, too.

In addition, a couple of the great things about blogging are meeting new people and really connecting with people I may never meet in person, and reconnecting with people I knew in the past.

If you've been reading from the beginning, thank you for giving me the confidence to continue.  Thank you for answering my endless questions.  Especially Joyce, who introduced me to the wonderful world of gadgets and backgrounds! 
If you're a new follower, thank you for joining me for a glimpse into my life.  Thank you for thinking that I'm worthy enough to think about from time to time!
Here's to another year of blogging!  Can't wait to see where this year takes me!

Friday Fragments

Mommy's Idea

Friday Fragments:  I remembered this week!  YAY, me!

Adoration:  I participated at our parish when we lived in SC.  I had been watching the openings here, so I watched,  I signed up, and went on Monday.  More on this in an upcoming post.

I won!  Look what I won over at The Charming Tyrants:

 The butterfly card is what it came inside.  I'm not sure if she made the card herself, but I'm definitely going to keep's too incredibly pretty to throw away!  I may frame it and put it in one of my rooms at school.  Oh, and the gift card was $20!

I'm trying to win: A blog make-over give away at Rebecca's.  She just got a new makeover for her blog compliments of Kelsey, and it looks GREAT.  Go visit and see how wonderful it looks!  Also, go check out Kim's flickr account...she has some really cool pictures!

IRL friend:  Sunday, YS & I met one of my young blogging friends for Mass.  Ashley is a student at the same university MS attends.  She is incredibly wise beyond her years and has a heart as big as Texas.  We attended mass, then went to Panera for breakfast.  The strength of her faith at her age astounds me.   It was really good to meet her! 

Seeing stars...almost:  The special ed. class at one of my schools went on a field trip Wednesday to a radio station.  While they were there, they ran into in "Chesney".  Kenny is from this area, and went to the same college that I did...I just missed him by a couple of years.  The teacher said that he stopped and talked to all of the kids.  I knew I should've gone on that field trip!
Here's a song that he wrote about our alma mater:

It's just too bad he didn't use pictures of the university and the actual fraternity house...maybe because the house was a dump!

Identity Crisis

My blog seems to be having an identity crisis right now.  If you change your background regularly (like I do), what do you put up when you're in between holidays?  Valentine's Day is over and it's too early to put up a St. Patrick's background.  Right now the weather is nice...the highs have been in the 60' I don't feel like putting up a winter background.  And, Spring is still a month away.
I was surfing and found this one.  I like it.  I think it's going to stay for a while. Okay, a few weeks, anyway!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

If you're looking for this month's edition of  2011 Recipe Challenge, go here.

1. Your favorite chocolate treat?
Can you hear how loud I'm laughing answering this one?  I'm not too picky with my chocolate...I'll take just about anything.

2. What more than anything else makes you feel loved?
 Just being around my boys & CH when we're all having a good time and actually getting along!

3. Cherries or blueberries?
Definitely cherries.  I don't know if it's the texture or what, but I just don't like blueberries. 

4. What is the one trait you most want the leader of your country to posess?
Honesty.  Oh, wait.  We're talking about politicians here.
5. Are you a saver or a spender?
I really, really wish I were a saver.  I'm sure CH wishes I were a saver, too.
6. If you gave a party for all of your friends would they already know each other?
Well, since I have sisters and  no friends, I would say, "yes".  
7. Are you interested in antiques? 
Not really.  I do think it's neat to look at old things, but the antique stores I've been in have just had a lot of junk.  Maybe I haven't been to the right ones?

8. Insert your own random thought here. 
 Don't you just love when you go some place and the employees remember you?  I don't go to Starbucks that often, but the manager at the one I go to remembers me.  I went in yesterday morning, and she asked me if I was ready for my gingerbread latte.  I went in a couple of Sundays ago, and she asked me  if I had been in a few days before to get a gingerbread.  I told her that I had, and she said that she remembered how my eyes lit up when I was told that they still had gingerbread lattes.  I just hate that they didn't have the dark cherry lattes this year...they were incredible!

Go visit Joyce and link up, or at least check out how everybody else answered the questions!

2011 Recipe Challenge: Round 2

I decided to go rogue this month and post something that I cooked (instead of Youngest Son)!
Paula Deen's Chicken Brunswick Stew
A great meal for a cold winter Saturday night.  CH said he thought it tasted a little "sweet & sour".  It was great over rice:  Add a salad and you've got a dinner.
The hardest part was taking the chicken off of the bone.  I'm sure there's an easy way to do it, so if you have any tips, send them on!  The recipe says to add a little bit of the stock if it gets thick, but I didn't have to add any.
We will definitely have this's a keeper!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Valentine's Day is really just another day to me.  It does mean that there are some speech groups I won't have at school because of parties and other activities.   This is the one party that the students can "officially" have.  There are a couple of Valentine's Days from the past that stick out:
3rd Grade:  We ended up not having a party because of a riot at the high school.  Yes, I said riot.  We got out of school early because of the teenagers being stupid.  This was the first year of integration in the Small Town.  As you know, February is also Black History Month.  Are they still calling it that, or are they being politically correct now and saying "Africa American History Month"?  Hm.   Anyway, it was pretty scary when you're 8 years old and you get out of school because of a riot.  I remember being at home, sitting at the table with my brothers & sisters, and somebody (I can't remember which one)  was late coming in.  Mom was worried (Mom is a worrier) until all her chicks were back in the roost.  My second oldest sister (who was a junior) came in with a scratch on her arm.  She ran into a locker on her way out of the school.   I envision the school being crazy, with the students running uncontrollably down the hall, trying to get out.  Was it really that way?  I don't know.  I need to check with my older siblings and get the real story.  I remember all of my classmates thinking it was real stupid of those older kids to act that way.  About the Valentine Party:  I can't remember if we actually had the party the Monday we got back (the riot was on a Friday) or if we were given our Valentines before we left.  I've put the word out on Facebook, so hopefully someone will have a much better memory than I!

Freshman year of college:  The guy I had been seeing & I had broken up, and a very good friend of mine sent me these:
Isn't he a sweetheart?  I think those were the first flowers I had ever gotten from a guy, not counting the corsages from dances.  This friend had broken up with his girlfriend, who happened to be my sister's roommate.  He was such a good friend, but, unfortunately we went our separate ways after a year or two.  I actually ended up seeing a good friend of his for a while, but the guy's girlfriend kind of put a stop to that!  (OOPS!)  He actually ended up being a good friend, too.

I try to make Valentine's Day quasi-special for my boys.  I usually get them a little heart of chocolates and some Valentine's Boxers, but decided to change it up some this year.  I sent OS some cookies, took some brownies to MS, and made some cookies for YS.

After hearing endless whining some complaints from CH, I mixed up some made-from-scratch brownies for him.  All 3 boys also got a brick shaving bar from Boll Weevil Soap Company.
(Sorry for the blurry picture:  cheapo camera!)
This scent is a really manly scent, in my opinion, anyway!  Hope they like it!  MS got his yesterday, YS got his this morning, and OS will get his as soon as it gets to the post office at school.  Hope the cookies get there without being all crumbled up!  I have the hardest time getting anything for CH.  Last year I think I got him a package of pistachios.  Big spender, huh?
How are you spending Valentine's Day?

Friday's Favorite Fave

It's time to get back on the FFF bandwagon!  Link up with Susanne by clicking on the picture.

1.  A good band booster meeting.  It was actually quite fun.  A lot of laughing, and no stress involved in this one.  I guess we're like a family:  we'll have our spats, but then it's done and we move on.

2.  Getting new Pampered Chef stuff!  I just got a few little odds & ends, but oh how I love Pampered Chef!

3.  Getting some soap products in the mail.  Some goodies for the boys for Valentine's Day, and some foot lotion for me.  This stuff is great!  I'm so glad my SIL took me by the store over Christmas Break.  I like Bath & Body Works, but would much rather support local businesses. 

4,  Some relief.  A couple of weeks ago when I had the chest congestion/cough, I did something to my ribs...possibly.  Then, I did something really stupid:  I went to the chiropractor for an adjustment and didn't tell him about it.  Not one of my smartest moments.  I went back last Friday and told him what happened.  He worked his magic, and it feels much better.  It still hurts, but at least I can breath!

5.  Jeans Day and  barbecue.  The superintendent is visiting my mountain school today, so we got to wear jeans yesterday.  And, since I'm at a different school today, I get to wear jeans again!  I love to wear my jeans and sweatshirt/fleece/tshirts on Fridays!

What were some of the highlights of your week?

Gripin' Thursday

Disclaimer:  If you're not in the mood to listen to some gripes, you might want to go ahead and skip this post!

Gripe #1:  Why, oh why, can't people learn to drive around a traffic circle/roundabout?  We have 1 in this county, and it just happens to be on my way to/from my mountain school (because I take a "short cut").  People insist on stopping, waiting for cars to pass, and then decide to go when there's no more cars coming.  IT'S A YIELD SIGN, PEOPLE!  Yield means that if there are cars coming you stop; you don't have to stop if there are no cars coming, or if they're at another yield sign. Drives me absolutely BATTY.  And, it's not like the traffic circle looks like this:
Believe me, it doesn't.  It's a very, very simple traffic circle, and it's quite fun to go around if you don't have to stop for anybody when you come down a hill to go around it.
Gripe #2:  The school system took away our Presidents' Day vacation and the professional development day that was the next day, giving us a total of 4 snow days left.  It snowed last night (just about 1/2 inch at my house) and kids, teachers, and subs are sick.  We have about 5 different bugs going around right now.  The number of kids who are sick is just ridiculous.  And, we're back to school.  Why in the world are they being so stingy with not letting us off?  The only thing I can think of is the state test in April.  Like 2 days are really going matter, especially with so many kids out.

I have to leave on a positive note:  Today is jeans' day at my mountain school, and we're having bbq catered in.  So, today isn't a complete waste.

Sharin' the Love

Yes, I'm loving the Hodgepodge!  Good thing Joyce has so much time on her hands to think of these questions (because she's snowed in...DUH!); hope she's stockpiling some for when the weather is nice!

1. What is more important-doing what you love or loving what you do?
Aren't they the same thing?  If they're not, does that mean I have to actually think about it?

2. Do you like bleu cheese?
In small doses.  Last summer we went to Ray's Hell Burger in DC, and YS got a burger with Bleu Cheese in it.  He took a bite and that was it.  I took a bite, wiped off the bleu cheese, and still only ate about half of it.  It was just too much!
3. What is the most difficult emotion for you to handle?
Great.  Another thinking question.   If it's my emotion, I would say anger.  If it's another person's emotion, I would say anger.  So, I guess my answer is....anger!

4. Fresh flowers or a box of chocolate? 
Really?  I don't even have to think about this one!  Chocolate.  Flowers will die, but chocolate will be forever with you...on the hips!

5. What's a song you love that has the word 'love' in its title? It doesn't have to be a 'love song'. 
The first one that just came to mind is Tina Turner's "What's Love Got to Do With It".  Not very romantic, huh?

6. Are you the person you wanted to be when you grew up?
Pretty much.  I haven't thought about it very much.  I knew I wanted to be a wife & mother, and I knew I would be a working mom.
7. Any special Valentines Day plans?
YS is going to cook his "Orange-Balsamic Glazed Chicken"  and "Lemon Risotto"At least, I've bought the ingredients for him to make it.  Hopefully he'll make it for us.  
We don't do a whole lot; VD is just another day, really.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
Yesterday, I had a few comments about cleaning the washing machine.   When I had my plain washing machine, I never cleaned it.  When I got my new HE washing machine, it came with a sample of washing machine cleaner.  I actually looked at the manual, and it recommended cleaning the machine once/month.  My machine has a "cleaning" cycle:  I just put the knob on the cycle, put the temperature on "hot", and push the button.  I don't remember the brand that was included with my machine, but I bought some Tide washing machine cleaner.  Just open the packet, pour it in the machine, and push the button.

Don't forget to go to Joyce's to link up and see how everybody else answered!

I Just Had to Do It

Yep, it was a pretty good weekend around the house.  Any weekend where I get all of the clothes, towels, plus sheets washed, it's a good weekend.  And,  I put the washing machine through the clean cycle.  I had no idea you were suppose to wash the washing machine once a month, did you?
We've always had trouble with the cable on the bigscreen tv in the man cave.  It would work for a while, then the HD channels wouldn't work and the regular channels would be snowy.  CH thought he had it fixed a few months ago,  So, Sunday he broke down and went to Best Buy and some little thingy that did the trick. Isn't it amazing how many little gadgets there are for everything?  Like, this little gadget I bought so I can take my memory card out of my camera and transfer the pictures to my laptop because the USB cord that came with my camera doesn't work.
Okay, back to the weekend:  We were able to watch the Super Bowl on the big tv in HD!  HOORAY!  I didn't mean to cheer for one team over the other, but I ended up cheering for the Packers.  I don't know why.  Maybe it was because when I actually liked the Cowboys back in the day, their big rival was the Steelers.  I do like Terry Bradshaw, though.  But, for those of you who don't know, he wasn't playing. Maybe I liked the Packers because Dom Capers is one of their coaches.  (He was the 1st head coach for the Carolina Panthers...we lived in Carolina when the franchise started.)   Maybe I chose the Packers because Aaron Rodgers is much, much cuter than Ben Roethlisberger.
This commercial had me laughing through the whole thing:

What was your favorite commercial?
Everybody else posted something about the Super Bowl; I just had to do it, too!

Super Meet Me on Monday

Blogging  is a funny thing...we tell our most intimate thoughts for all to read  and yet most of the time I find myself sitting and wondering, "who is  this person!?"  I know them...but yet I don't know them!  I want  to know who the person is behind all those words so Java thought of a great  way for all of us to "meet" each other!

Every Sunday Never Growing Old will post five get to know you  questions that you can copy and paste into your own Monday post and we  can all learn a little more about each and every one of us!!


1.  Did you watch the Superbowl?

Oh, yes I did!  We had been having problems with the cable not wanting to work on the big screen in the Man Cave, but CH got that fixed yesterday, hopefully for good.  During the 2nd half, I had to switch and cheer pretend to cheer for the Steelers so the Packers would win.

2.  What is the last book that you read?
The last book I finished was "The Best Laid Plans" by Sidney Sheldon.  Good, easy read.  I'm currently trying to read "The Girl With the Dragon Tatoo" by Steig Larsson...I'm just having trouble getting into it.

3.  What is your favorite kind of cake?
The done kind!  I've never met a cake I didn't like.

4.  Do you snore?
What a silly question!  Of course not!  (Don't ask CH, though!)

5.  Do you play an instrument?
I played the flute and flugelhorn in high school, with the flute being my main instrument.  In college, I played bass flute in the flute choir.  When I was little, I wanted to be the first female floutist on the Lawrence Welk Show!

Head over to Java's and see how everybody else answered the questions!

The Green-Eyed Monster

As I was sitting in Mass this morning, my mind wandered.  (Big surprise, I know.)  The priest who celebrated early mass was the one who I believe has autistic-like characteristics.  His homilies leave much to be desired.  He doesn't know how to tie in the gospel (or any of the readings, for that matter) into the homily.  I realize church is the last place you should be envious, but as I was sitting there, I envied the people I know who talk about what a great sermon/homily they heard, and how they can relate it to their lives.  I'm just not getting it at my Parish.  I guess I shouldn't say "my" parish, since I'm not registered in the closest parish to me.
The gospel:  Isaiah 58:7-10
"Thus says the LORD:
Share your bread with the hungry,
shelter the oppressed and the homeless;
clothe the naked when you see them,
and do not turn your back on your own.
Then your light shall break forth like the dawn,
and your wound shall quickly be healed;
your vindication shall go before you,
and the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard.
Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer,
you shall cry for help, and he will say: Here I am!
If you remove from your midst
oppression, false accusation and malicious speech;
if you bestow your bread on the hungry
and satisfy the afflicted;
then light shall rise for you in the darkness,
and the gloom shall become for you like midday."

There are so many things in this reading that could be related to everyday life.  Instead, we got a history lesson.  I thought he said that Tuesday is the African American National Day of Prayer, but the USCCB website says it's today.  Anyway, while the history was interesting, he certainly could have tied the history lesson and the gospel together.
I did learn something, though:  St. Augustine was a black saint, as was his mother, St. Monica.  I had no idea.  Not that it matters, in the whole scheme of things!  For a list of black/African saints, go here .
As an added plus for attending mass this morning, we had the "Blessing of the Throats".  February 3rd was the feast day of St. Blaise, who is the patron saint of throat problems, as well as the wool trade.
During the Blessing, we approach the altar.  The priest or lay minister places crossed candles to our throat and says a blessing.  I absolutely love this blessing.  I think it has to do with having so many throat problems as a child.  It does seem that when I received this blessing I would go through the rest of the winter without any problems.

When we were trying to decide on a name for YS, I threw out the name "Blaise".  CH didn't like it; in fact, if I'm remembering correctly, he thought it was a little strange.  (Not as strange as a name that he threw into the hat, but we're not going to go there right now!)  So, YS wasn't named Blaise, but there was a boy in OS' class with that name.  (Enter the green-eyed monster.)  In all fairness, YS' name fits him, and I can't imagine calling him Blaise.  
So, yes, the green-eyed monster shows up quite often to taunt me.  That's one of the biggest things I have to work on.  Any suggestions? 

100th Day...or Is It?

There seems to be some confusion between my 2 schools as to the actual 100th day of school.  One of my schools celebrated the milestone on Monday.  The other one is celebrating it today.  If you have a youngster, you know how important this day is to a Kindergartner.  Yeah, I don't really get it either, but apparently it's a BIG deal.
One of the activities that the students must participate in is some kind of project using 100 objects.  The school that is celebrating today had some really creative projects.  Here are some pictures:
Obviously the student did this one by himself...or did he?
This one was a bit of a surprise...this is one of my student's project.  Nice touch to put the stars on black poster board!
These next 2 are my favorites:
(Love the 3D effect!)
Did you do something cool with your child on his/her 100th day of school in Kindergarten?
*  Update on my friend:  when she went to the doctor this morning....they heard a heartbeat!  It's the power of prayer, ladies!  No doubt! 

Holidays Must Sees

We got the obligatory watching of  Groundhog Day over with last night.  Call me weird, but I have certain movies I watch on certain holidays/special days.  Here we go:
Obviously, on Feb. 2, Groundhog Day.  Good thing one of those days Phil killed himself wasn't his last day.
Feb. 14:  PS I Love You.  I cry through the whole movie when I watch it.  What a great love story.  I guess if I had Love Story I would watch that too.  And cry through the whole thing.  I love a good crying movie.

President's Day:  Sometimes I watch Holiday Inn.  Not every year, but some years.

Easter:  Steel Magnolias   What other chick flick would one watch for Easter?
The first time I watched it, I was amazed at how you could be crying one second, then laughing the next.  What an incredible cast!
Between Easter & Halloween there is a definite lull.  We don't have Independence Day on dvd, guessed it: if we did, that's what we would watch on the 4th of July!
Halloween:  Rocky Horror Picture Show  Did anybody ever go to the movie theater and join in the heckling?  And, why in the world did we think it was fun to heckle a movie?  
I don't have a movie that I watch during Thanksgiving.  Are there any Thanksgiving movies out there besides the Waltons Homecoming, or whatever it was called?    Since that weekend begins the Christmas season (at my house, anyway), that's when I get to get out my Christmas dvds.  If you've been reading my blog, you'll know that my most favorite Christmas movie is:
I see myself as Sybil when all the kids are gone.  She's such a cool mom, but, oh my, she will let people know if she doesn't like them!
Christmas is my most favorite time of year to watch movies.  I love the "feel good" kind of movies.  The Holiday, Last Holiday, along with all of the classics.  
I forgot to mention one movie that has to be watched when it snows:  Snow Day.  
Do you have any movies that you watch at certain times of the year?

* For those of you remembering my friend (who is going through a miscarriage) in your prayers and thoughts:  Thank you!  Please remember her today as she goes to the doctor for another sonogram and will possibly be scheduled for surgery.  She is having some complications with this miscarriage, so any and all prayers are appreciated!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Would you rather be seen as a person who did their duty or forged their own path?
Ha!  I published this post without answering this question!  Do I really have to think about this?  I have to say, I think I'd rather be seen as a person who did their duty.  I'm not the adventurous type; I leave forging paths to others.

2. This week's Wednesday Hodgepodge happens to fall on Groundhog's Day. In keeping with that theme, if you could have a do-over of any one day out of the last seven, which day would it be and why. If you haven't seen the movie Groundhog Day this question will make absolutely no sense but that's can answer anyway.
Sunday.  OS was home, we went to Mass, then met MS for lunch.  It was a nice, relaxing day.  I didn't have a day that was bad enough to warrant a "do-over" this week.

3. Hot cocoa...yay or nay on the marshmallows?
I don't need 'em, to be perfectly honest.  My espresso machine does make some awesome hot chocolate using the steamed milk.

4. Do you wear makeup every day? What are the top two must haves in your daily makeup routine?
If I don't plan on leaving the house on the weekends, I don't wear makeup.  My top 2:  tinted moisturizer and mascara.

5. Is it more important to you in a relationship to be loved or understood?
Obviously to be loved, because I don't think CH could possibly understand me.  Heck, I don't even understand me!

6. Parsley sage rosemary or thyme... your favorite?

7. What do you do when you feel angry? 
Vent.  9 times out of 10 people know about it.  I'm not a confrontational person, but I will blow off steam to someone.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
Well, phase 1 of getting rid of the pink bathroom is complete.  My nephew finished tiling around the bathtub Monday night, and it was almost without a hitch.  When he was putting the water knobs back on, something broke and he hadn't turned the water off.  We had a minor flood in the basement (luckily it was in the section that isn't finished), but it's all good now.  Here is a sample of the finished product:
(The dimensions look a little weird here...I used the panoramic view for my camera, and obviously didn't line something up exactly right!)
Here's a close-up of the tiles.  This looks more like what the wall really looks like, color-wise!
I'm not sure when phase 2 will begin, but this is a good start!
Did anyone else's local Chick Fil A have free chicken biscuits to give away this morning?  YS & FES were up and out of the house by 6:15 to go get theirs!
Happy Groundhog Day!  Gotta watch the movie's just what I do!

Weekend Wrap Up

Things have been busy here in the small town.

For the past few years, the faculty/staff at one of my schools has had a night out at the hockey game.  I didn't have time to meet some of my coworkers for dinner, so I just met them at the game.  You know the saying "I went to a fight and a hockey game broke out"?  Yeah, that's exactly what happened on Friday.  I lost count after the 5th fight.  I've never been to a game with so many fights.  Another friend (who I didn't know was at the game) said she thought there were so many because they were having trouble scoring, so they had to keep the fans happy.  We lost 1-0, which really disappointed me because we weren't able to stand up and sing our song to the other team.
Saturday YS & I went to a Drum Line/Winterguard Competition.  His high school has just started a Winter Drum Line, and they will be performing in exhibition at a couple of competitions in March.  The school's Winter Guard was competing at this event, so we went to watch and lend our support.  There was one group that was just amazing.  They did this "Twilight" kind of show, and their showmanship was incredible.  I absolutely love to watch rifles spinning and being tossed in the air.  It so nice to see youngsters spending their day using their talents.  About the Drum Line:  I was expecting to see things going on like the movie "Drum Line".  I was pretty disappointed that it wasn't like that.  I don't know if it was the acoustics in the gym or what, but it just sounded like a big jumbled mess.  Not impressive.
OS came in on Saturday, and he asked if I wanted him to go to church with me on Sunday.  Confession time:  I haven't been very good about going to Mass lately.  I don't know what it is, besides pure laziness.  Anyway, we went to Mass on Sunday at the parish where we're actually registered, which just happens to be on campus where MS goes to college.  I called MS before we went to see if he wanted to meet us there, but he was a no show.  (Big surprise, huh?)  We did go by his dorm and take him out to lunch.  It was so nice to be able to spend some time with my boys.  And, just in case you're wondering:  OS was my favorite on Sunday.
This is a song that one of the Winter Guards performed to on Saturday.  Very catchy...I can't get it out of my head!

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