October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!!

Trick or Treat was last night in our neck of the woods. Friday nights are HUGE football nights around here and that comes before Trick or Treat. We had so many ghosts, goblins, princesses, monsters, and witches at our house that we ran out of candy 45 minutes before the end of the allotted time. It was amazing. I wish I had taken a picture of our street. At one point there were so many ATVs, pick-ups, and tractors with hay trailers on our road NO ONE could move. It was WILD. It was almost like a scene in the movies with the street so full of little trick and treaters! I loved it!!!

Just about the time we ran out of candy my brother-in-law and his family pulled down our driveway. They were telling us that it took them 10 minutes to just turn down our street. Big Bear and I were glad they came though, look at these two cute princesses!!!

Last night I made Puppy Chow to share with friends and family for Halloween. This is such a fun treat, and oh so addicting. I think I am going to make this every Halloween. I can’t wait to make it with Polar Cub one day. Miss B loves this stuff. She ate an entire bag while she was at our house and took a bowl home for later.
Here is the recipe:

Puppy Chow

9 cups crispy rice cereal squares
½ cup peanut butter
¼ butter
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cups confectioners' sugar

1. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the chocolate and butter; add peanut butter and mix until smooth. Stir in vanilla.
2. Remove from heat, add cereal and stir until coated.
3. Pour powdered sugar into large paper bag, add coated cereal and shake until well coated. Lay cereal out on waxed paper to cool. Store in airtight container.

This is what happens with this stuff. Look through a camera eye to take a picture and suddenly there are fingers in your shot stealing some puppy chow!

Have a WONDERFUL Halloween Everyone!! Big Bear and I will be at the football game cheering the team on to District Champs!!

October 28, 2008

'Cold' War

I will admit I have a competitive nature. I am pretty sure that it comes from growing up with three brothers ~ one of which is less than a year younger than I am. This competitive streak that I have - often times - is a good thing. Other times it can get me into situations that are less than comfortable. At home right now I am in one of those ‘less than comfortable’ situations.

A few weeks ago Big Bear and I were talking about turning on the heat. I mentioned that we didn’t need it yet, the days were still up in the upper 70’s. One thing led to another and suddenly we started claiming who would need to turn on the heat first. I said things like, “I’m from Chicago, I’m used to the cold.” Or “I’m used to bundling up for cold weather.” His only line was, “I can do anything I set my mind to.”

Well, for the last few weeks this banter has been going back and forth. This past week we have both started using psychological ‘suggestions’ to make the other want to turn on the heat, or little devilish things to make the other want to turn on the heat. I will admit, I even stooped so low as to use almost all of the hot water yesterday morning thinking that will make him turn on the heat. No such luck!

Until now this has been a fun little battle between the two of us. I have really rather enjoyed the banter that we have had about it all. This morning, though, when I woke up it was 59 degrees in our house I decided it is time to change my tactics!! When it is that cold it is NOT fun. I usually get up before him and it was MISERABLE this morning. While I was making my breakfast and lunch for today I turned on the oven. (Don’t tell him!) I was able to raise the temperature to 60 degrees in the kitchen, but it wasn’t enough. Today the temperature outside is not supposed to get above 45 degrees. It is supposed to get down in the 20’s tonight. Yikes!! Our little battle has just become a WAR!

We have said that we will call a truce when it gets cold enough for the pipes to freeze – when does that happen? So, should I cave and turn on the heat? You know that will mean I will have to hear about it for weeks. Do you have any tactics I can use in this little war? I would love to hear any ideas, before I freeze to death.

I’ll keep you posted on the Cold War in Kentucky.

October 23, 2008

A Loss...

Today I was informed of the death of a former student. Over the years of my teaching career there have been students who have died, but I never knew any of them personally, until now.

Nicole and I both started here at the same time. She was a freshman and I was 'the new teacher from Chicago'. She was in my class for four years, and what fun we had. Nicole was a funny, smart, opinionated young woman. She was wheelchair bound all of her life, but she NEVER let that stop her. Nicole joined in several clubs, never missed a football or basketball game, and was the bell of her senior prom. I'll never forget how she would yell down the hallway, "Hey! Mrs. R!" every time she saw me.

Nicole graduated in 2005. She did go on to college, but I hadn't heard from her in the last year. It is so very sad she is gone. Although, I bet she danced right through those gates with her unforgettable smile, slapping St. Peter on the back as she passed by ~ that's Nicole! :)

October 22, 2008

Sevens Tag

I haven't completed a meme in a LONG time, but here goes. Monica over at Duplings, Three tagged me for this one.

1. Link to the person who tagged you and post the rules
2. Share 7 random or weird facts about yourself
3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and link to them
4. Let each person know they've been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. It all happens in 2’s. I find myself addicted to the number two. When I’m at the grocery store I usually buy items in twos; two cans of soup, two cartons of eggs, two packages of spinach, whatever. Now not EVERYTHING, but if we use it and I can justify it I am much happier if I can get it in twos. I NEVER purchase anything in an odd number – EVER. It doesn’t only happen at the grocery store I’m afraid. Case in point: My dogs always came in pairs.

Kaeliegh was a single, but she is a sheltie like the girls were, and she is a mini-me of the boys. It works! If only we would have qualified for twins – our agency requires one stay at home parent.

2. No More Make-up! I have given up make-up and boy is it freeing! I wear a tad bit of eyeliner and mascara and that is it. In the summer while I’m not teaching I hardly ever wear make-up. I must be maturing because I have now started to not wear it at school and NO ONE said a word! I HATE the feeling of make-up on my face. I have tried everything from Prescriptive to Neutrogena. By the end of a school day I couldn’t wait to wash it all off. Now I save money, save time, and my face feels like MY face all day!

3. EVERYTHING Has a Place. The kids at school tease me all of the time because I have to have ALL things put in its place or I feel so out of whack.

This my desk every morning when I walk in the door. The folder contains papers a sub may need. At the end of every period it is as close to this as possible. It just makes my life easier. Our house is like this for the most part too. I have had to give in a bit because I do live with someone else. I have loosened up a touch, I had to or I would have gone insane. :)

4. No Purse for This Girl. I don’t carry a purse. I haven’t carried a purse for almost two years now. I have them. I used to have a LOT of them. I used to only carry Coach or Dooney, now nada! I have a small wallet that fits in a pocket. If it doesn’t fit in a pocket, I don’t need it. I don’t know what I am going to do when I have to carry a diaper bag – I guess carry a diaper bag. I just haven’t found one I want to carry, not that I’ve really looked yet.

5. Ovo-vegetarian ~ That’s Me!! Here is the Definition: Ovo-vegetarian refers to people who do not eat meat or dairy products but do eat eggs. Many people are ovo-vegetarians because they are lactose-intolerant. The prefix "ovo" comes from the Latin word for egg. I have not given up dairy because I’m lactose intolerant. I have given up dairy because I like it too much! I have an all or nothing personality. I don’t know why, but if I say I can’t - I won’t. I rarely ate meat to begin with. I do NOT miss eating meat, I haven’t eaten meat in two years. I do miss cheese, and I do miss Ben and Jerry, but I feel better. I am not going to say that I haven’t had any dairy, I have. I do try to limit it to special occasions. :) Oh! I do soy proteins and nuts. I do eat protein sources, just not of the flesh variety.

6. Burt Is My Buddy! I never leave home without him. On Sunday I thought I forgot Burt at home. I was bummed and wondered how I was going to get Big Bear to stop at Kroger so I could get one. Then I found another tube hiding in a sweater I had in the car. Have to have Burt!

7. iTunes Junkie! I play music ALL of the time. If someone threatened to take away my ipod the fight would be on. I need my ipod. That being said, I am almost ashamed to admit the amount of deniro I was spending at iTunes. Several months ago BB suggested I get a $25 gift card every month and limit myself to that. I agreed, because when he showed me the credit card – oh mama!!! Now if only it was the beginning of the month already!!!! Is there an iTunes Anonymous?

Now the hard part. I am supposed to tag seven people. I have seen this go around so I am not sure if you have already completed it. So! If you have read all of this, haven't completed one, and REALLY want to ~ you it! :)

October 20, 2008

Updates From Here...

I really don’t have anything earth shatteringly important to post about, so I thought I would try one of the random thought bullet posts and see what pops into my head. This could be scary, but here it goes:

*Last week was fall break. I spent most of the week cleaning and organizing
our house. The only thing I didn’t get accomplished was the basement.
I hate cleaning the basement. That is first thing on the list for the next

*Big Bear and I spent one evening last week cleaning out and organizing the room that will be the nursery. Over the past two years it has become a junk room. Everything we didn’t know what to do with was put in that room. We had scuba gear, luggage, TWO TV boxes, old Christmas wrapping paraphernalia, sleeping bags and air mattresses, PLUS all of the ‘baby’ stuff we have acquired over the past 36 months - all stuffed into that room. Now everything is in its rightful home. Baby things are in tubs, and the room is ready to be painted.

*I miss Pug Mama and Hedda!!! I haven’t seen them since July, and that is too DANG long! Something has to happen soon or I will go through serious withdrawal issues, then an intervention will be necessary. It will get ugly. So GIRLS!!!!! WHEN?!?!

BFF Fun in NY

*Last spring I began to tear down the “Countdown to China” bulletin board that is up in my classroom. I was amazed by the number of kids that wanted me to leave it up. I guess they are more interested than I thought. I did take down the pictures, but I left the calendar up. I have to be observed in a few weeks, so I thought I better get something up soon. Well, this is what I came up with.

The kids LOVE all of the new pictures. Plus it makes me happy to see so
many cute little faces every day. Can you see I left LOTS of room for new
referrals that will be coming SOON!!

*I haven’t been swimming in three weeks. I miss it, but I am not missing getting up at 4am. I know I need to get back in the pool, my jeans are starting to tell me as much, but it is so nice to be able to sleep until 5:30. I did get out and hit the pavement this morning – walking. Hopefully this will lead me back to the pool. My knees can’t handle too many miles before they hurt – then I will definitely be back in the pool.

Well, that is about all I can think of for now. Actually I had more to say than I thought. :)

Until next time...

October 12, 2008

Pumpkin Patch & 30 Months

Big Bear and I took our nieces, C and B, to a pumpkin farm yesterday. We had a LOT of fun! The best part of the day was when we were in the field. BB and I were looking at a pumpkin. It must have started as two pumpkins and then fused into one. While BB and I were standing there talking about it, B, who is three years old, came from behind us and said, "It looks like a butt." Then kept walking. BB and I laughed so hard. You can see some pictures of the 'butt' in the slide show. I wish we would have bought it now.

[rockyou id=124581753&w=426&h=319]

On another note:

I haven't kept count of our LID. I usually have to recount every month. This month is a big one though, so I thought should mention it.

Yesterday I was looking through my old blog trying to decide whether or not to keep it. I came across a post from when we were nine months logged in. At the time I wrote that were were probably half way there. Hah! Who Knew! I -surely to goodness- think we are 3/4 of the way there now! ;)

October 5, 2008

Friends, Shopping, and Goetta

Every couple of months I get together with Pipo and Sandra. When we do get together it is one big gab session. We usually spend most of our time sitting in a coffee shop gabbing, at a restaurant gabbing, or at a bookstore gabbing. Yesterday we did just that. Here is a run down of our day:

  • Starbucks (chatting)

  • IKEA

  • Red Squirrel Restaurant (chatting)

  • Baby Gap

  • Sur La Table

  • Hallmark

  • Bed Bath and Beyond

  • Thai Restaurant (chatting)

  • Starbucks (chatting)

Do you see the pattern? Yet, I have proof that shopping was accomplished. I actually bought these things:

1. Adorable Polar Bears for a future care package.
2. Bowls and plates from IKEA
3. My favorite fall candle
4. Awesome long sleeved bibs!
5. Coasters (not in the picture)

As you can see there really was some shopping taking place.

Highlights of the day:

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!

  • Don't eat at a Cincinnati restaurant and ask, "What is Go-Etta?" It will be almost two full minutes for the laughing to stop. Then you will get an explanation, but all I learned was it's gunk and not very good. For all of us from outside the area it is pronounced "getta". I Googled it this morning and it looks like this: I'm glad I was forewarned.

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!

  • I'm not the only hoverer.

  • Chocolate on a table with the three of us doesn't last long.

  • J & T are getting so big, are such beautiful, adorable girls, and are so good!

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!
  • Pad Thai is a must when we're together.

  • Pipo and Sandra keep the 'good' shopping places a secret until you earn their trust. :)

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!

  • Eleven hours is never enough time.

  • Deep secret feelings of a boy in someone's future are quite strong.

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!

  • Dingle Dorks are in Lexington and Cincinnati.

  • Food consumed with friends has no calories or fat grams.

  • The next time I see Pipo she will have her referral!!!

Thank you, my friends, for a wonderful day! As always I can't wait until the next time!!!!!

October 3, 2008

A Fun Evening

Question: Where can you hear questions such as:

Wanna tater Lynn?
AvaJoy you gonna eat some fried tater?

Answer: At the Milton, WV Pumpkin Festival!

Big Bear (BB) and I went over to the festival last night. We had a blast! Yes, we ate 'fried tater', too. We walked around the craft booths, people watched while we ate fried taters and he ate fried catfish. We tried pumpkin butter, apple butter, and of course I had some pumpkin pie. There were pumpkin donuts, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin fudge, anything you could think of in pumpkin flavor. We saw the Pumpkin Queen and her court, as well as the Junior Lil’ Miss Pumpkin walking around the fair. There were hay rides, a local country band, and a largest pumpkin contest. I had so much fun, I enjoy anything pumpkin.

While walking around BB said, “I guess next year ;) will be here with us. She’ll like this. I think we’ll make this a tradition.” My heart just smiled. It will be so much fun to share things like this with her.

Sometimes I miss the city, but then we have moments like last night, and I realize I LOVE small town life too. You don’t find this kind of festival in Chicago. :) I can’t wait until next year!!!