Thankful Thursday

I'm joining Rebecca at Knit by God's Hand for Thankful Thursday.
This week, I’m thankful for…
... a son who knows how to cook.

 ... a quote that I run across twice in 3 days:

... finally coming very close to a perfect kolache:

... a good book, a hot cup of coffee, and some cuddlebugs on a cold Saturday:

... hope for the future of this country:

What are you thankful for this week?

End of January Hodgepodge

Joyce has more questions for us this week. Join in, learn new things about bloggers you follow, and meet some new ones!

1. Share a winter memory from your childhood. 
I thought about this the other day when I was at my daddy's: Walking down to the basement to get the paper out his driveway, the snow days that we had came to me. I remembered coming in through the basement after sledding on the hill across the street. We would sit down in the hallway and take off all of our wet things. The best times!

2. What was on your blog this time last year? (Besides the Hodgepodge of course!) If you weren't blogging, what in the world were you doing with all that free time? 
I actually had 2 posts on the 01/26/15. That doesn't happen very often! I wrote about being rude in "Excuse Me!" and my Weekly Meal Plan

3. Ellen Goodman is quoted as saying, 'We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room, drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives...not looking for flaws, but for potential.' 

Do you see more flaws or more potential in your life at the start of a new year? Have you done anything specific this month to address either one? Does the new year truly begin for you on January 1, or is there some other month of the year that feels like a fresh start and new beginning?
I see potential. Fresh starts and new beginnings are all in your mind.  They could happen any time!

4. Who's an athlete you admire or respect and why?
Oh, you KNOW I'm going to say Peyton! He always seems to be the nicest guy. In college, he bought 

pizza for the students waiting in line for tickets. He's the "favorite son" around these parts!

5. Do you like cream in your coffee? Whipped cream on your pumpkin pie? Cream cheese on a bagel? Sour cream on a baked potato? Cream of wheat for breakfast? Have you ever had a scone with clotted cream? Of all the creamy foods mentioned, which one sounds most appealing to you right this very minute?
I've never had cream of wheat or a scone with clotted cream, but everything else is really good! The kolaches I made last weekend had a cream cheese filling with ricotta cheese. They were excellent!

(Kolaches aren't really round. I know how to fix that next time!)

6. Where were you last kept waiting for 'hours on end'? Or for what felt like hours on end? How well did you cope?
I can't think of anything right now. Weird, huh?

7. Believe it or not, when next week's Hodgepodge rolls around it will be February.Huh?!? Bid adieu here to January in seven words or less.
Short, unexpected snowcation.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

We're having a Mardi Gras Party at church on Friday, and I have to bring an appetizer. Any ideas for something that is quick and good?

Weekend Wrap-up

I actually had a pretty productive weekend. We were out of school on Friday for rain "snow", so I was able to get some work in writing an IEP and an evaluation report, and work some more on a presentation I'm scheduled to give on Thursday afternoon. If anyone shows up. I hope people do come, because I've got some great motivational apps to share with them.

Anyway... I got laundry done, finished a book (and started another), and watched a couple of movies. A friend from church let me borrow a book about the man behind the Our Lady of Victory Basilica just outside of Buffalo, NY. Very interesting. It was amazing how everything kept working out for him. Father Nelson Baker is in the first of three steps to become a saint.

Movies: I don't know why I had never watched Finding Neverland before. What an excellent movie!
I also watched The Man in the Moon. Reese Witherspoon, Sam Waterston, and Tess Harper are all in it. Gail Strickland (who played Martin Sheen's wife in The American President) is also in it. I was a little afraid that the accents would be over the top (the setting is Louisiana), but they weren't. Of those 4 actors, only Sam Waterston isn't from the south, so maybe that's why the accents weren't exaggerated. Then again, Julia Roberts is from Atlanta, and her accent in Steel Magnolias drove me crazy.

So glad the Broncos won last night! Peyton is the man around here. Brady...not so much. If you're a Patriots' fan...sorry! This is the funniest thing I've seen in a long time:

And this was the most amazing thing I've seen in an awful long time. As many people were trying to get home after the March for Life in DC, there was an accident and many buses were stranded on the turnpike for over 10 hours. They ended up having Mass on what in the snow. I read an article that said that there were people who were stranded in cars that joined.
How can you beat that?

The Deal with Friday Fragments

I'm linking up with Traci at A Star in my Own Universe for Friday Fragments.

* You know what stresses me out? Those comment verification "I'm not a robot" thingies. You know the ones: the ones where you have to click on all of the pictures that have a certain picture. What if I think there are mountains in the background? Am I supposed to click on that? There are 6 pictures and they aren't very big, so what if what I see isn't really what it is? Who came up with this idea, anyway???

* I love Will & Jada (as in Smith), I really, really do. But...when I saw her speech about the Oscars, I thought "she's asking people to segregate themselves." Then, a family member basically said the same thing. She said something to the effect that MLK, Jr. wanted everyone to be treated the same, regardless of their color. As she said, maybe their performance wasn't up to par. I don't know that much about the Oscars, and I certainly don't take much stock in it.

* Speaking of big deals: Why is it such a big deal that a former VP candidate is endorsing a certain person who is running to be a candidate for President? I just don't get it.

* What is the deal with school superintendents "stepping down" and getting a buy-out? A near-by superintendent is  stepping down resigning (let's call it what it is) at the end of the year, and he's going to get paid. Seriously? If someone wants to pay me that kind of money, I'd "step down", too. I think he's been offered a job somewhere else...maybe not in education.

* Looks like it's another snow day for me today. Having a 1-day work-week isn't bad! I've got some things on my to-do list today, so I'm glad to have 1 more day to get it done.

* I'm trying to compartmentalize my life. From Bloglovin' to emails, I'm going to try this and see if I can get some organization in my home life. I'll keep you posted on how that goes!

Want to see what little clips other people are fragging about? Click here to visit Traci and link up.

Thankful Thursday

Rebecca is a gracious hostess every Thursday to remind us to stop and remember the little things we have to be thankful for. 
This week, I’m thankful for…
... my job. Or rather, that I love my job. Kids are absolutely fascinating...little human beings who are developing senses of humor as well as opinions. They make me smile...most of the time!

...snow days! The snow was beautiful today. CH worked from home & YS didn't have class or work today.

...heat. It was cold, y'all! I can't imagine not having a warm house to live in.

... coffee. It's been the perfect thing for these cold mornings. 

What are you thankful for this week?

Skating into the Hodgepodge

I have to agree with Joyce: This was a quick week! Seems like I just wrote a Hodgepodge post yesterday!

1.  Speaking of skating...when did you last 'skate on thin ice', 'skate over the details', 'encounter a cheapskate', or just plain skate?
Oh, it seems like I'm always skating on thin ice! My life would be a lot more boring if I wasn't! 

2. What would you say is the biggest problem of people your age?
Planning for retirement or preparing for it.

3. What's your favorite accessory? Is it something you wear every day, often, or only on special occasions?
I don't know that I have a "favorite". I have a cheap watch that I wear every day, as well as my wedding rings & earrings. I also have a necklace that is a cross with a Miraculous Medal in the middle of it; I wear it almost every day. That's basically it.

4. January 20th is National Cheese Lover's Day. Are you a lover of cheese? What's your favorite dish made with cheese? Last thing you ate that contained some kind of cheese? 
I like cheese...not stinky, strong cheese, though. 

5. What's something guaranteed to make you roll your eyes?
CH telling a corny joke.

6. Your favorite book series
Right now, it's "The Network Series" by Katie Cross. She is, in my opinion, an awesome writer who is able to give you descriptions so you feel like you are right there. Oh, and she may or may not have called me her best friend after I made a comment on Wattpad! :)

7. Why did you choose your profession? 
It was quite by accident, actually. I was in my 3rd major & just wasn't feeling it. I looked through the catalogue to see if something would catch my eye. I thought about special ed for a split second. 1 of my sisters suggested that I look at Communicative Disorders (Speech/Language Pathology) and talk to one of her high school friends who was in the program at the same university. I did, as well as talk to the chairman of the department, and the rest is history. 
When I was little, my mom was the only person who could understand me. I'm assuming that it was developmental; I never went to speech therapy and it self-corrected by the time I was in 1st Grade. (I think so, anyway.) I don't remember people not understanding me, so I guess it didn't affect me too badly!

8. Insert your own random thought here. 
SNOW DAY!!!   'Nuf said!

The Best Laid Plans

My plans for this weekend included drinking lots of coffee/tea, watching movies, reading, and napping. CH went camping & I had the whole house to myself (except when YS was here). I had visions of napping when I wanted while laying on the couch watching tv/movies & reading. BUT...
Pepper had an appointment Sat. morning first thing (8:00) for shots. When I went into the pantry, I found signs that we had an uninvited visitor. Just.Great. Here's the result of my Saturday morning:
I put everything in plastic storage containers, labeled some things (yep, just a tad OCD), and got rid of a lot of stuff. The other side is just as organized, with the dog food in a container as well. I did manage to read the rest of The High Priest's Daughter by Katie Cross. I can't wait for the next book...I love the Network Series!
Sunday morning was Mass. When I got home, I looked in the room that used to be CH's "office", and it was a complete mess. I cleaned up and organized the room.
I also cleaned the living room floor. Oh, and I watched the rest of Mozart in the Jungle. The season ended kind of weird...I didn't think it was the end. Now I have to wait for the new season.
It's a long weekend, so I'll have today to be lazy and to just relax. This has been a good weekend; it's been just what I needed, when I needed it. Some snow days would be good, but for now, I'll take the 3 day weekend!

Thankful Thursday

Rebecca at Knit by God's Hand hosts this little get-together every Thursday. It's a great way to stop and just be thankful.
This week, I’m thankful for…
...unexpected words that seem to come just at the right time. Church friends who make me laugh. 

...soup on cold nights. And a down comforter. :)

...quiet weekends that involved the beginning stages of vacation planning.

What has you thankful this week?

Wednesday Hodgepodge

How do you like that post title? I just don't have any creativity in my right now!
Thankfully Joyce has enough for most of us.

1. Share one thing that really makes your day.
Just a kind word will do it.

2. Lots of these kinds of lists out there, but one found here says the fifteen most colorful places on earth are:

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy~Burano, Italy~Havana, Cuba~Rio de Janiero, Brazil~Chefchaouen, Morocco~Balat, Istanbul, Turkey~Menton, France~Jodhpur, India~La Baca, Buenos Aires, Argentina~Guanajuato, Mexico~Capetown, South Africa~Valparaiso, Chile~Wroclaw, Poland~San Francisco, California~and Pelourhino, Salvador, Brazil.  

Of those listed which would you most like to see up close and in person? Of all the places you've seen or traveled in your own life, what would you say was one of the most colorful?

I think it would be really interesting to go to Cuba, but I don't think it's the one I'd like to see the most. I would say somewhere in Italy. I really have no desire to go to S. America.  Or S. Africa or the Middle East. 

I haven't traveled a whole lot, but I would say the most colorful place I've been is Charleston.
Although, Nyhavn (Copenhagen) is pretty colorful as well:

3."Everything you want is on the other side of fear." Jack Canfield  In general, would you agree or disagree with that statement? Why?
I don't think that "everything I want" is there, but I see what he's saying. To face your fears and do something is definitely an accomplishment. 

4. Imagine you're stranded on a desert island and dessert appears...what do you hope it is? Do you ever struggle to remember which spelling is desert and which is dessert?
Chocolate. I do have to think about the spelling for a second, but then I'm okay.

5. What song almost always makes you cry?
It would be easier to say what song doesn't make me cry! A beautiful song is all it takes. One with meaningful words, for sure. The past couple of days, this song has made me cry:

If you don't know the story, Rory & Joey are a singing couple. Joey was diagnosed with cervical cancer about a year (I think) after this video was made. Joey stopped treatments in October. Rory wrote on the blog on the 9th that Joey is ready to go home. 

6. January is National Soup Month.  Everything from soup to nutsin the soup,thick as pea soupsouped up...which saying most recently applies to your life in some way? Explain.
None of them.

7. Write a two word note to your younger self. What does it say?
Be Brave.

8. Insert your own random thought here.

A young lady who is very near to my heart just started a blog: Young, Broke and Travel Hungry. If you have a minute, please stop by and give her some encouragement! Follow her on Bloglovin' to keep up with new places she's visited.

It Was Going to be a Weekend Wrap-up, BUT...

I started writing a Weekend Wrap-up post last night, but deleted it because we didn't do much. We went to dinner on Friday with friends (Hi, Rachel! We need to do that more often!) & started pinning places for our summer vacation. That was pretty much it. The Contemporary Choir played at Mass on Saturday evening, so I stayed in my pj's until noon on Sunday while taking down the Christmas decorations. We lead exciting lives, I'm telling you!
I was hit with inspiration this morning. Yesterday, while eating at our favorite Mexican restaurant, there was a mother and a daughter (she looked to be late elementary/early middle school age) sitting next to us. (I'm assuming it was a mom/daughter relationship.) Mom only said a handful of words to her daughter the whole time we were there. She was on her phone the whole time, even while she was eating. It would ping, and she would stop and look at her phone. Daughter didn't even spend as much time on her phone as mom did. She sat, looking around for most of the time. I felt so bad for her.  This is the time when she should be talking to her daughter constantly. She should be getting to know who her daughter is, and help mold her into the adult she should be. 
Yesterday wasn't the first time this has happened while we were in there, or in any restaurant. We saw a family of parents and young boy a while back doing the same thing. No one talked to the boy; he had a tablet in front of him the whole time. When the parents talked, they briefly talked with each other.
I know I'm preaching to the choir, but this is something I hate to see. One of my sisters said that she and some friends/coworkers put their phones in the middle of the table when they go out to eat. The 1st person to grab their phone during their meal has to pay. Brilliant....just brilliant!

Friday Fragments

Friday Fragments with Star2
I'm joining Traci at A Star in My Own Universe for Friday Fragments. At least I think I am. I mean, I will if I remember to actually link up! :)
*This was a crazy week, for sure. Work-wise, Monday & Tuesday were "Free days" (days without the kids)'s almost like a day off! Yep, my job would be great if it weren't for all those kids! (I'm just kidding...I really love my job. I don't know what I'd do if I wasn't a Speech/Language Pathologist.)
* I had something going on every night: Monday was CCW Officers' Meeting, Tuesday was Epiphany Dinner at Church, Wednesday CH & I met some of my siblings and their spouses for dinner. ( pictures of any of this.) Thursday I got home and put my pj bottoms and a long sleeved t-shirt on with full intentions of going to bed early. It's almost 9:00 pm and I'm not in bed yet. I'm tired, y'all. 
*Tuesday the daughter of a woman that I went to high school with passed away. She was diagnosed with kidney cancer 14 months ago, right during her senior year in high school. She spent a lot of time at St. Jude's but was able to go to her prom. Wednesday night, there was going to be a vigil at the bridge but it turned into a memorial. I took a couple of quick pictures of "the bridge":
Her mom is an amazing woman: She was quoted in our local paper as saying “Through her illness, I drew my strength from Hannah,” she said. “She was an amazing person... I’m grateful to God that he gave me Hannah for 19 years.”
I didn't personally know Hannah, but the times I saw her, she was smiling. I ran into them going through airport security in November, and she was smiling then. 
* I'm off to bed to watch 1 episode of "Mozart in the Jungle". Just one (they're only 30 minutes long) and then I've gotta get my beauty sleep!
Happy Friday!!!  :)

New Year, New Hodgepodge

1. Are you ready for new? Is 2016 likely to be very different than 2015? Do you want it to be?
I’m soooo ready for new! Here’s hoping 2016 is very different (and better!) that 2015!!

2. January 6th is National Technology Day. Currently, what is your single biggest struggle or frustration when it comes to technology?
Right now, it’s my stupid laptop updating at the most inopportune times. I have designated times for this to happen, but it doesn’t seem to be paying any attention.

3. It's that time again...time for 
Lake Superior University to present a list of words (or phrases) they'd like to see banished (for over-use, mis-use, and general uselessness) in 2016. You can read more about the decision making process here, but this year's top vote getters are-

So (at the start of every single sentence), conversation (as in hotly debated topics where we're invited to 'join the conversation'), problematic, stakeholder, price point, secret sauce, break the Internet, walk it back, presser, manspreading (common in larger cities where some men take up the entire bus or train seat by sitting wide), vape, giving me life (refers to anything that may excite a person or make them laugh), and physicality

Which of these words/phrases would you most like to see banished from everyday speech and why? Is there a word not on the list you'd like to add?

I’ve not heard of a lot of those! I’ll have to blame my cableless life on that, which, I suppose, is a good thing! I use “so” a LOT. :)

4. Share one of your current health related goals.
I’ve lost around 20 pounds. I want to lose at least 14 more. To that, I need to walk. Or do some kind of exercise.

5. Let's talk fifty shades of gray. As in the color. Gray is currently a popular color in home decor, paint, wardrobes, hair, wedding party attire, and more. Are you a fan? Do you have the color in some variation in your home or wardrobe?  Gray hair, the old gray mare, gray matter, gray area...which gray idiom can you most relate to right now?
Gray hair. When I looked at this picture of CH & I, I guess the light was hitting me just right...or my gray hairs, anyway. I debated coloring & decided not to. I’ve earned every one of those gray hairs!
Our living room & hallways are gray & I like it. I have a few gray pieces of clothing, but not very many.

6. Certain foods are considered 'lucky' if eaten on New Year's Eve or New Year's Day. Cooked greens to bring economic fortune, black-eyed peas or lentils also symbolize money, pork which symbolizes progress, fish for good luck, and if you're in Spain 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight. Did you eat any lucky foods on the first day of the year? Is that a tradition in your home? Of the foods listed, which most appeals to you?

We eat black-eyed peas. Greens? YUCK. Southern or not, I refuse to eat collard greens.
Give me any of the other ones, though.

7. What's the single biggest time waster in your life and what, if anything, will you do about it this year?
The computer.  I was reading an SLP friend’s blog, and she hit the nail on the head: We’re both in the last stage of our career, and spend way too much time on it. Being an SLP is such a big part of who I am, I don’t know who I’ll be when I retire. I’ve been spending so much time making products for my Teachers Pay Teachers Store, and for what?  I’m going to slow that down, read more books, do better at keeping up with my blogging friends, and, most importantly, spend more time with CH.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

You know what word I think is absolutely ridiculous? “Affluenza” Are you with me on this one? How absurd is it that the kid didn’t know what he was doing because of being from an affluent family? Are you kidding me????

Thanks, Joyce for some great questions again this week!

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