Spooky Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What's something you're dealing with that might be described as tricky?
I have no idea.  (Aren't I off to an amazing start this week?)

2.  What's your treat of choice?
Funny you should ask.  I saw this yesterday in Kroger, and have no idea how it ended up in my cart:
Seriously.  Did you even know there was such a thing???

3. Did you/will you carve a jack-o-lantern this month? Which real (living or dead) or fictional 'Jack' would you most like to meet in person? Why?
Nah.  I quit doing that a loooong time ago!  Hmmm...Jack Kennedy maybe.

4.  In your opinion, what's the grossest sounding word in the English language?
The "F" word.  I hate that word.

5. When did your heart last skip a beat?
When my daddy called a few weeks ago.  He very rarely calls me, so my heart skipped a beat when I heard his voice on the other end of the phone.  There was a dog that had gotten into their fenced-in back yard.  He had no idea how it got in there.  I had YS take some food down for them so they could feed him until they found the owner.  Daddy called me back a few minutes after YS had gotten down there to let me know that it was their back-door neighbor's dog!  He must've crawled over the fence.

6. Monster Mash by Bobby 'Boris' Picket, Michael Jackson's ThrillerWerewolves of London by Warren Zevon, or Ray Parker Jr.'s Ghostbusters...your favorite 'scary' tune?
I don't really care for "Thriller", although my boys are obsessed with the album cover:

7.   It was a dark and stormy night when______________________________.
My sister & I were at home by ourselves and we heard a creaking noise coming from the basement.  We ended up calling the police; they looked around and said it was just the wind blowing the garage door.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
I saw this on "The Bridge" as I drove by yesterday:
As you may or may not know, there is a Packer who is from the Small Town.  He played high school football with my 2 oldest sons, & I graduated from high school with his dad.  He was injured a couple of weeks ago, and will be out for a few more weeks.  I saw on his twitter post that the middle school sent him well-wishes.  He is definitely our hero!

Weekend Wrap-Up

Another weekend gone.  Friday after work, I went up to the high school to help the band boosters prep the concession stand.  By that, I mean I cut up tomatoes, chopped onions, and got the condiment table ready.  I didn't stay for the game since it was suppose to be so cold.  Plus, I had needed to bake some brownies for the bake sale at the band competition on Saturday.  And, I baked some muffins for the Hospitality Room for the competition.  YS & I had a nice dinner out, followed by a quick trip to the Dollar Tree.
CH drove 7 hours to his high school alma mater, where they were celebrating 100 years of football.  Since I had taken last Friday off, I didn't think I should take that Friday, too.  Here is CH & his brother with their football coach:
And, CH with the State Championship Trophy that they won:
Saturday, I had to be at the high school by 3:00 to work in the Hospitality Room.  This wasn't a bad gig, let me tell ya!  I was inside, and away from the hustle and bustle.  For 5 years I worked concessions; this was much, much nicer!  Not to mention warmer.  I didn't feel the least bit guilty as I walked by the current boosters breaking down the concession stand.
I got to the school a little early so I could watch a few of the bands.
Small Town's band marched exhibition for the first time since the current band director has been there (which has been 9 years).  Even though I didn't have anybody out there, I was so proud of what that band has accomplished over the past 9 years.  9 years ago, there were only around 18 members.  It's grown to around 50 (or more), and they sounded soooo wonderful!

Yesterday was laundry, and catching up on "The Blacklist".  I also watched "The Heat" with Melissa McCarthy & Sandra Bullock.  It wasn't quite as funny as I thought it was going to be, but it was okay.

Hope you had a good weekend, too!

Fantastic Give-away!

Kimberly at Camp and Cottage Living is having a heck of a give-away.  She is giving away an incredible bracelet made out of vintage silverware!  If you haven't seen it, go by and take a look.  Simply beautiful.
Oh, and you can enter the giveaway while you're there!
In addition to the bracelet, she has some other goodies that the lucky winner will also receive.

Friday Fragments

Half-Past Kissin' Time

~  Why do I do this to myself?  I volunteered to help with concession set-up for the football game this afternoon, and also volunteered to help with the band festival on Saturday.  I don't know why I did this.  At least I'm going to be inside for the band festival!

~  Snarky people suck.  Just sayin'.

~  A friend said she went to WalMart...where they were already playing Christmas music.  When will the madness stop?

~  "Scandal" is just getting ridiculous.  I'm not sure why they put all of the good shows on at 10:00.  Well, except for "Revenge".  They scheduled that one correctly.  (9:00)

~  Have a great weekend!


Cool Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. When it comes to good manners, what two top your list of most important?
How about just saying "Excuse Me" and "Thank You"?  It drives me crazy when people don't say either one of those.

2. Let's open a proverbial can of worms...Common Core.  Are you familiar with the term (talking education reform in the USA)?  If so, care to share your thoughts? In your opinion, what is one of the biggest issues schools (in your home country) face today?
Oh, yes.  Since I work in a school system, I'm all too familiar with Common Core.  What the geniuses that thought this up didn't realize is that you can't put all children in the USA in the same mold.  They've taken away creativity from teaching.  The teachers are more like robots doing what they're told, and they're very frustrated.  The teacher evaluations aren't helping, either.

3. Name a celebrity whose fashion sense you admire and share why.
Kate Middleton comes to mind first.  So sensible yet so elegant.

4. How are you affected by the changing seasons?
I love the changing seasons!  All of them.  I look forward to each one with anticipation!

5. Scariest book you've ever read?
"Three Days of Darkness" by Joyce Magner.  I couldn't sleep for weeks. Think the whole world in total darkness:  no batteries will work, and only a child can light a candle.  Add demons coming after your soul to the mix, and you have a pretty scary book.  I did a lot of praying!  I finally talked to an uncle (who was a priest) about it; I think that's what finally got me calmed down!

6. What time of day are you most hungry? What's your go-to snack?
After school.   I'm trying really hard to eat like I'm suppose to.  That means yogurt & some graham crackers right around 3:00.  (Of course, I just started that yesterday, so we'll see what happens!)

7. Do you lean more towards being too needy or too independent? Which do you find harder to deal with in others?
If you had asked me this 30 years ago, my answer would've been "too needy".  I think I'm pretty independent at this stage.  I still need CH's checkbook, though!  
People who are too needy absolutely drive me bonkers.  Grow a pair, already!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Things seem to be slowing down a bit at work...I only had 2 IEP meetings on my calendar for this week.  That would normally mean that I can sleep 30 minutes later, but Ally (my schnauzer) decided she needed to take care of business at 4:30 a.m. yesterday.  Guess I didn't make it clear to her that I could sleep a little later!

Much Needed Weekend Wrap Up

This was a very much needed weekend.  I took Friday off so CH & I could leave as soon as he got home from his 1/2 day at work.  We had a camping weekend planned close to where OS lives.  He told us about a campground not far from him, and since it closes for the winter at the end of the month & OS' birthday is in a few days, we chose this weekend.  We weren't able to get a site right on the lake, but ours ended up being decent.  There wasn't anyone right behind us, and there was a little bit of space for Laika to investigate.  And talk about your perfect camping weather!  Except for just a couple of very brief showers on Saturday, the weather was absolutely perfect:  Cool nights with warm fires and very comfortable days.

OS came by Friday night after he got off of work, and he had a surprise:  I have grand-dog!  His name is Sulty; he was found wandering around where OS works.  He said that he was in pretty bad shape.  Sulty has a chip, but apparently that's not a sure-fire way to get your dog back if you have one.  OS took him to the vet, made sure he had his shots, got him on heart-worm and flea/tick preventative, and tried to find his owner.  OS was able to trace it back to the manufacturer, but was unable to find his owner.  He is such a sweet dog, and very well behaved.  It warmed my heart to see OS with Sulty:  you can tell that Sulty adores OS.
 Sulty & Laika got along great, and Laika was able to get him to chase her around. (Her favorite game)

Soon after we got to the site, Laika zeroed in on something in the woods.  CH called her back before she got too close.  At first, he thought it was a skunk, then an albino squirrel, but it turned out to be a white squirrel.  OS said that they are all over a small nearby college.  It was the strangest thing.
Saturday morning, OS dropped off a canoe for us to use.  There was a waterfall  that he wanted us to see.  If I've ever been in a canoe, I don't remember it.  On a vacation to Hilton Head,  we (CH & the boys and I) took a kayak tour, but it wasn't a canoe.  Once I got over feeling like CH was going to tip the canoe over, I was fine.  In fact, it was most enjoyable.  On the way to the waterfall, we only saw one other person on the lake until we got to the falls.  On the way back, we passed a few families who were on their way to the falls.  The reflection of the trees on the lake was unbelievably vivid.  I couldn't get over how clear the reflection was.

(The above pictures of CH & I are courtesy of the couple who camped next to us.  We really hit it off with them, and they loved Laika!)
When we got back to the campsite, we went into town for a couple of things.  We passed by a camper that was very "retro":
We saw this in the grocery store parking lot:
Isn't that a great name for an outdoor education center?

For the boys' birthdays, we usually have a family dinner.  This year, we fixed dinner at the campsite for OS:
We discovered that this definitely was not the best way to cook the vegetables, but the steaks were amazing.  We even fixed Irish Soda Bread in the Dutch Oven:
Our campsite through the campfire:

Sunday morning, I walked down to the lake to take a couple of pictures.  The mist hanging over the lake looked pretty cool.  This is an untouched picture:

A perfect Sunday morning:  coffee & a campfire.
CH fixed biscuits in the dutch oven.  I have to say:  he's getting the hang of using the DO.  These were just about perfect:
As we were "next door" talking to our new friends, we looked over to our table and saw this:
Just hangin' out, taking in some Sunday morning coffee!
Like I said, this was the perfect weekend; it was just what I needed.  I've had a lot of stress at work and have been so busy, I needed a weekend away from the temptation of using the computer, & a weekend to be disconnected.  We had really sketchy cell service, and had to go to the camp store for internet service.  And on top of all that, I got to spend some time with OS!

Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. What was your biggest worry five years ago?  Is it still a worry? 
I can barely remember 2 days ago, much less 5 years ago!  It must have been that OS would graduate from college.  (He did.)

2. Yesterday (October 15th) was National Grouch Day...what makes you grouchy? What cheers you up when you're feeling grouchy?
That explains a whole lot!  Hormones.  That's what makes me grouchy.  Cheering me up?  A funny movie, being left alone.

3.  In one word, how does it feel to be photographed?
I hate to be photographed.  Period.

4. Besides your parents, who would you say had the greatest influence on you in choosing your life path?  Explain. 
Gosh, I have no idea.  It takes a village!

5. The crisp days of autumn are here ...what's something you like to eat, but only if it's crisp?
Pumpkin Crisp.  It has "crisp" in the name, so that counts, right?  I have a friend who likes it so much, she eats it for breakfast!

6. What's the most useless object you own?
My iron.  It sits in the closet and rarely sees the light of day!

7.  Share a favorite fall memory. 
Making "leaf houses" with one of my sisters.  We would rake the leaves into a kind of a "blueprint" of a house, with the leaves making up the walls.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Can you believe these schools banning "playing" during recess?  First, no balls.  Now, there's a school that is banning "Tag".  Goodness gracious!  This is unbelievable.  We certainly are becoming a soft nation.
Here's something that YS shared with me the other day.  I think it is just hilarious!  Skip ahead to around 30 seconds for the hilarity!

Blog Version of the Halloween Meme

I saw this on From Tracie, and it looked like fun, so.....I'm in!

These are Melissa's directions:
Take the categories below. Open your blog. Look at the first comment on each of your last 10 posts. Fill in one name per category (keeping the order of most recent post to 10 posts ago) and link their name to their blog. Then hit publish. If you have a post without a comment, skip to the next one. And then chide your readers for screwing up your meme: obviously, they need to step it up and leave more comments.

I had to modify this a little bit, because apparently I only have about 5 people who actually read and comment on my blog!  If the comment was made by the same person more than once, I went on to the 2nd person.  Well, except for Rebecca because (just from what I know of her), she would do both of those things!  

In honour of every horror movie made in the 80's:
1. Decides the creepy house is safe.Kathie
(I think Kathie definitely has the "it's safe to go in" gene!)

2. Screams like a Banshee. Barbara
(I've just met Barbara, so I'm not sure how close this is.)

3. Scares you as a joke.  Patty
(I think this comes from having all of those kids.  She's gotta let off some steam.)

4. Goes into the woods and gets killed. Rebecca
(And, in her Belle costume.)

5. First to go insane. Debby
(Let me say:  I'm not a big fan of this one!)

6. Murdered saving someone.  April
(April seems like such a sweet person.  No doubt about this one!)

7. Has your back no matter what jumps out. Rebecca (again)
(And then she goes screaming into the woods.)

8. Has a solid survivor plan no one listens. Hootin' Anni
(I'm not sure why no one would listen.  She seems to be pretty reasonable!)

9. Runs off screaming never to be seen again. Eric (My little brother!)
(This is really funny that his name popped up on this one.  One time, when we were in Tx. visiting family, Eric was taking a nap upstairs.  My other younger brother & I thought it would be funny to wake him up-okay, maybe it was just my idea!  So, we crept upstairs where Eric was sleeping with his hands crossed over his chest.  When I made a noise to wake him up, he raised up and made a sound like a ghost!  Scared the bajeezus out of me!)

10. Is the real killer. Joyce
(Joyce, Joyce, Joyce.  This is so hard to believe!)

Weekend Wrap-up

This weekend turned out to be much better than I expected it to be.
Friday late afternoon I went to the high school to help the band boosters set up for concessions.  It was so good to see everybody; it felt like old times!

 Here's the scoreboard before the game.  If you look in the background you can see the construction on the new high school.
Saturday morning, one of my sisters came by and we went to a local coffeehouse.  I didn't take any pictures of it, though.  They roast their own coffee in the downstairs of their new location.  The new building is really nice; they were in an old house before.

After we had our coffee, we made our way to the Fall Festival.  It was pretty cool to wander around the Twin City's downtown area; it's not someplace I go to on a regular basis.  One of the stores that I definitely want to go back into:

They had some pretty cool stuff:

We made our way through the vendors, and had to stop for the "Tractor Parade":

There was a blacksmith demonstration:
Fall decorations were in abundance:

And there was even a pink tractor:
I learned a little bit of history that I didn't know:
And ran into another sister who was doing a basket-weaving demonstration:
She makes beautiful baskets; you may remember seeing this one that she made my Mom:
She even has one of her baskets in the possession of a Supreme Court Justice!  If you're interested in more information, email her at foxhollowcreations@gmail.com.  She mainly sells locally; I need to get her on facebook or Etsy.

Since she was a volunteer, she was given free tickets to the concert venue for the weekend.  Let me tell ya, the organizers did a great job with the music!  The headliner on  Friday night was Blues Traveler,  Saturday night was Kix Brooks & Lynyrd Skynyrd, and last night was Brett Eldridge & Rascal Flatts.    They weren't planning on going to Saturday & Sunday nights, so she asked if we wanted them.  CH & I went to the Skynyrd concert, and MS & his g'friend took the tickets for last night.  I was amazed at how many people were at the concert!  We lucked out and didn't have too much trouble finding somewhere to sit; we were quite a ways away from the stage, but they had 3 jumbo screens set up.  I think if we had been any closer, it would've been waaaay too loud!  (Guess I'm showing my age now!)

I don't know if it's just where we sitting, but the crowd seemed to be extremely well-behaved.  My sister suggested a place for us to park, and it was perfect.  We had to walk a little ways, but we had no trouble getting out on the road.  I'm seriously thinking that I may volunteer next year; especially if I get free concert tickets!

We had a relaxing day on Sunday.  I did some reading and just a little bit of laundry.  I even managed to get my clothes changed out for colder weather.
So...now it's back to the real world.  Fall Break 2013 is over.  Thank goodness it's a short week for me:  we had an Admin Day today (which is kind of like a day off!), and I'm taking Friday off so I can get things ready for a camping weekend!

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