So Long October Friday Frags

Friday Fragments #18
 I don't know about you, but I am SO glad to see October on its way out. I have been swamped with meetings the past couple of weeks. (Mental note: Have my Oct. meetings in Sept. next year.)

 This week has been especially hectic. We had Family Fun Night at 1 of my schools on Tuesday, and tonight is our Fall Festival at the other. I usually wouldn't do go to evening functions if both have it on the same week, but the Fun Night was one of our mandatory nights, and the Fall Festival only comes around once a year. AND, it's a way to make a little bit of money for my room.

 Next week, 2 coworkers & I are presenting at our state conference. This will be my first time presenting, so I'm just a little nervous. I don't expect very many people to be listening to us since the conference is rather small.

 I spent a couple of hours last night making a business card. It was super-easy and rather fun! Here's a sneak peek:
Since I use the same Instagram & Twitter account for personal & business, you now know where to follow me!

 I've lost 9 lbs. so far...without walking. I know it's mostly/all water, and I know it's time to do some walking along with it. I just haven't had time with everything else I feel I need to do (like make business cards!) to pull the treadmill down. Maybe when I do I'll get around to catching up with everybody's blogs!

 Have a fantastic weekend! Don't forget to check out Traci at A Star in my Own Universe to link up with your frags!

It All Started With a Trophy

Disclaimer: This post reflects my opinions. If you don't like it, don't read it!
This post is more or less a follow-up to my post titled Being Tolerant of Tolerance. I haven't been much of a "thinker" lately, so my posts have been few & far between.
I have never wanted to just walk away from my job as much as I did at the beginning of last week. I love what I do (Speech/Language Pathologist), and I love the setting where I work (public schools). But, GEESH, am I wondering what in the world is happening to our country!
Apparently, to avoid lawsuits, if a parent comes in and says that her son identifies himself as a female, a female he is.  But gets better. The schools are encouraged to have a uni-sex bathroom that is available to all students so that an anatomically male student is not using the restroom with females. I'm sorry, but I find it hard to believe that an elementary student would be in that much conflict at that early age. If he/she is, then I would hope that the parents seek out counseling for the child. Why can't a girl be a "tomboy" anymore? I think I was definitely one growing up, but I never...not ever...identified myself as a boy. I remember people thinking I was a boy...until I got close to them and they could see I wasn't. Heck, when I'm out in a t-shirt & jeans, I still have people call me "sir"! Kids are what you expect them to be. If a girl is a "tomboy" & her parental unit goes to the school and says she identifies herself as a boy, I truly believe that the girl is going to feel that there's something wrong & that maybe she should have been a boy. As adults, we forget how impressionable young children are. They aren't able to handle and grasp adult conversations.
CH, YS, & I were discussing this, and YS said he agreed with the whole identifying as the opposite gender, but only after the child is 16. He also said, "what if a child comes in and says he's a ninja?" And so it begins.
It goes farther than gender. No more describing milk as "white" or "chocolate". (I'm not kidding.) I feel like all of the tiptoeing is adding more stress and taking teachers' focuses away from educating their students. Why are we letting a small minority dictate the majority? What can we do about it?
I'm just over it all; it's getting ridiculous. I blame the whole "every child gets a trophy" thing. Life is full of disappointments; kids need to learn to deal with not being the best, or, in some cases, not even being average. We're not all the same (thank God!); we weren't made the same. I'm concerned with how this young generation is going to be responsible adults, running our country and having to take care of the geriatric population (which would be me!).
David McCullough, Jr., during a commencement speech, said "You've been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble-wrapped," he told the graduates. "But do not get the idea you're anything special. Because you are not." If you haven't heard the complete speech, you can find it here.
I wonder if our parents thought the same thing with all of the "free love" and "sex and drugs" of the 60's & 70's. Did they think our country was going to pot, too? The kids today are going to take all of this as "normal", and they won't know any different. But we will. And we do.
If I could have walked away at the beginning of the week, I definitely would have thought hard about doing so.
This is my favorite commercial on tv right now. It hits the nail right on the head!

Trophy graphic by

Friday Fragments: It's Been a Long Time!

Friday Fragments with Star2
 It's been a long time since I've participated in Friday Fragments (hosted by A Star in My Own Universe), but I have a little bit of free time since it's the end of Fall Break.

 I've been catching up on The Blacklist. I watched it pretty faithfully the first season, but I guess I forgot when it was on last year.

 Speaking of tv shows: there are some OMG! shows this fall: Blindspot and Quantico top the list. 

 Thinking about SC and all the rain they've had this past week. The town where we lived is okay; that area escaped the flooding. 

 I had a doctor's appointment and lab done this week. Time to eat like a grown-up and take better care of myself. Yuck. 

 After running over a wooden pallet in the middle of a highway on Wednesday, I have 4 new wheels & tires. Luckily, the only thing that happened to my car was a bent rim. It made me waste the good part of an afternoon & CH missed a half-day of work. 

 I saw these shirts on Love Denmark Facebook Page the other day. It says it all!
 I'm ready for more fall-like weather! This is my favorite time of the year: cool nights, warm days, colorful leaves. There's just something special about Fall!

Pumpkining up the Hodgepodge

I'm getting a little bit of a late start writing the Hodgepodge this week. You know, Fall Break & all!
I'm writing "off the cuff" here...just writing down the first thing that pops in my mind. You've been warned!!!

1. It's October so let's get this out there first thing...have you jumped on the all-things-pumpkin bandwagon? How so?
I made the first batch of Pumpkin Spice Muffins for our Sisters' Weekend. I can't thank Patty enough for putting this on her blog! 1 of my sisters said that she tosses in some cinnamon chips & walnuts in hers. I'm definitely going to try it!
Little Debbie has a pumpkin roll that's like the Swiss Roll. Pretty good stuff! And, of course, there's pumpkin spice creamer in my frig.

2.  "We have more power than will; and it is often by way of excuse to ourselves that we fancy things are impossible." Francois Duc De la Rochefoucauld  

What's something you once thought impossible, but in hindsight see as more a matter of lack of will?
Having a baby by natural childbirth. A 10 pound baby at that. This 10 pounder that I birthed without meds just turned 21 a couple of weeks ago, and he's loving being "legal"!
(That's him on the left in the black shirt)

3. The rose is America's National Flower, but every state also has its own (click hereto see the list). Are you happy with yours? If you were in charge what would youdeclare your state's flower? If you're outside the U.S. what bloom would you like to see labeled as your country's national flower?
Irises are beautiful and can be seen just about anywhere. I'm indifferent about how I feel about it. 

4. What have you lost interest in recently?
Housekeeping. 'Nuff said.

5. In your opinion, who's the best living musician?
Billy Joel.

6. S'mores-love 'em or no? Ever make them indoors? Last time you sat around an outdoor fire? Are making s'mores and sitting round a fire pit on your autumn bucket list? Do you have an autumn bucket list?
I don't have an autumn bucket list. I do like sitting around a campfire, which we did a couple of weekends ago at our camping group's fall campout. Except we weren't real close to it; we were 2 deep. The time before that it was last March when we camped. 
Eating S'mores: Love 'em, but they're just a little too rich for me now. I'm really liking Starbucks' Graham Latte as a substitute!

7. Your favorite small town? Why?
My Small Town. Because it's home.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
I've been meaning to post this for a couple of months. OS' roommate has a business venture called "The Unpaper Towel". It's pretty neat: She makes cloth paper towels that can be washed and used over and over.  At $45 for 12, they're kind of pricey, but think about how much money you throw away on paper towels! They stay together on the roll with snaps, so, according to her website, you can snap them on your frig, oven, or even your beltloop.  Click on a link below to find out more:

Sisters' Weekend 2015

Have I mentioned lately how much I love my sisters?
We had another successful Sisters' Weekend, even with getting started a day earlier than usual!
5 of us went up Thursday, got settled, and went out for dinner. 2 hours later, we got to eat. 1 of my sisters wanted to go to Dead Red Lobster since her husband doesn't eat seafood. We were told that it would be 45 minutes to an hour wait, but we didn't believe them because there a lot of empty, clean tables. We sat  outside and talked, which is what we would've done if we had stayed at the house. After more than an hour, we decided to go across the street to Joe's Crab Shack. The sister that wanted to go there turned in our buzzer and told her thanks, but no thanks. We went across the street, were immediately seated, and were eating within 15-20 minutes of walking in the door.  We spent the rest of the evening talking & laughing.
Friday, we ate breakfast and then went on a wine tour.
There are 5 on the tour, but we only did 3 & ended up getting a nice little glass. There isn't an expiration date on the passports that you had to get stamped, so I think YS & I are going on a field trip to the other 2 on Friday. At 1 of the wineries we were able to take a tour of the actual winery. I swear the tour guide kept looking at our boobs. Very disturbing.  And creepy. And to top it off, at that place you only were allowed 2 samples of wine as opposed to 4 at the other 2 places. Definitely not my favorite one.
Friday evening, the other 2 sisters-in-law came. My sister that gives me stuff & I made dinner. Or rather, she made dinner & I threw a bag of salad in a bowl! I did help her put them together, though.
Saturday morning, more eating, followed by shopping. There's an outlet there, so we spent a few hours there. We all started in Sketchers, then everybody went their own way, depending on what we were looking for. Just about everybody had something they needed to get, so I don't think any of us were wandering aimlessly.
When we got back to the house, we turned on the tv & watched football games. We Skyped with our sister who is working on her Ph.D. in Tx. She was at a cousin's tailgate party, so it was pretty quick before we lost the connection. We tried again after she got back to her apartment, but I couldn't get any sound.
Sunday is always a sad day because that's when we go home. But not before going out to eat! :)
We almost always go to The Apple Barn to eat before we leave. We had our name on the list and sat around for about 30 minutes chatting.
 Pointing to how high the river rained most of the weekend.

Then the manager comes out and tells us that a goose (yes, a goose) ran into the power line and knocked out the power. (That explains our power outage when I was in the shower.) That caused problems with the vent, which was causing some gas back-up. He said we could go up to the grill, and they called in the list so we didn't have to go to the back of the line. (That may or may not have been suggested by 1 of my sisters.) We went to the grill (which is still on the grounds), ate, and then did some last minute shopping in the Christmas Shop. Some of us were going to get an apple pie from the store, power in that section of the place.
I'm glad we waited until October to go this year. We had a "parent conference day" on Friday, but we weren't required to be there as long as we document 6 hours of parent conferences. Plus, it was cooler. Plus, we got to see cute things like this:

We look forward to this weekend so much every year. This was an especially sweet one, except that the sister in Tx. wasn't here. Hopefully next year she'll make it. We still brought too much food and drinks, but we did better with the food! (Better too much than not enough, right?) We also will make sure we get a 4 bedroom so no one has to sleep on the couch.
Last year, Mama's death was still very fresh and we had just been together 6 weeks prior to our weekend. (We went in early Sept. last year.) We had some nice talks and shared sweet memories. Even though I may have been accused of being spoiled, it was a fantastic weekend!

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