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Archive for April, 2005

A Phone Call and the Talent Show

May 1st, 2005 at 04:30 am

Wow! Just Wow! I'm not even totally sure where to begin. Last night after I wrote here, I wrote an email to my ex-bf Scott. Then today when I got back from church and checked my email . . . there was a reply from him! At the end of the email he mentioned that it had been a while since we had talked on the phone and he'd like to call me sometime. I replied back and at the end of my email told him that if he did call, I wouldn't hang up on him. Smile

About an hour later or so, I got a one line email from him asking if I was awake. I replied that yes, I was awake. About 20 minutes later or so, he called me! We talked for over 4 1/2 hours - not our longest conversation, but one of the longer ones. He was telling me about school and how it runs in five week cycles. Then he asked me again when the end of the school year was for me and my dates for moving. I told him. Then he mentioned to me that there is a mid-term break that same weekend that I am going to be moving. I was like, oh, what a coincidence. Smile ---In my head I was going, oh my word, I just bet he is going to ask to come here and see me again! -- About three and a half hours into our conversation he refers again to his mid-term break, then says that he might want to take a little road trip during that time. And would I be willing to go to dinner with him!!! --I KNEW it!!! -- I mentioned that that weekend I would be moving, but it would be a nice break to go out to dinner with him. He then told me that he'd be willing to help me move. Smile ---Oh, almost forgot - he asked me if I was dating anyone -- I told him about the two characters who'd emailed me from the singles site, and also told him that no, I wasn't dating anyone. BTW - he'd be driving 600+ miles one way.

Ok, guys, now my heart is skipping a beat. I don't know if I'm reading too much into this or not. I'm not even sure exactly WHAT I want this all to be. The last time we saw each other was in October. We parted as friends, and have since then stayed in minimal contact, until the past month. There really isn't anything bad I can say about him, except that maybe when we dated he wasn't really quite ready for it - needed to see the other side of the fence so to speak.

If he is in fact coming here to try for a second chance, I already know my heart's answer. My brain on the other hand is a bit more cautious. I've only broken my rule of giving a relationship a second chance once - and lets just say that didn't turn out very well at all. He and I have so much in common, and are so much alike in many ways, that it's almost scary (in a good way). I think that if I were to give him a second chance, I'd have to insist on taking things very slowly, so I can be sure he's here for the long haul. He has to know that he can't just snap his fingers, and have me come running.

Of course, I *could* be completely off base, and he really is driving 9+ hours one way to spend a day with a friend. And he only asked me if I was dating anyone because he was curious.

Ok, now on to the Talent Show. I arrived tonight at the same time as Nick and Tammy and their two children (two of my favorite youngsters in the world!). As we were walking over to the school, someone driving by told Tammy that someone had caught what they thought was a mouse and let it go outside. Tammy was horrified because from the description of the mouse, it sounded just like one of their class's pet gerbils. So, all five of us began a hunt for the gerbil. I honestly thought there was no way that we would be able to find it. Before we even started the hunt, we went to her classroom, and discovered that not just one gerbil was missing - but both gerbils were missing! Amazingly, we were able to not only locate the gerbil who'd been let outside, but also capture it, with about five minutes of searching. Then we decided to search her classroom for the other gerbil. Tammy and I started opening up the closet doors. I opened up the last one, which, lo and behold, was where the other gerbil was hiding! It took a few minutes of patience and an offer of food, and the second gerbil was rescued! These gerbils were not only classroom pets, but they were on loan from the daughter of the Spanish teacher and were just babies. So, if they'd been actually lost and not found, it would have been a disaster on many levels. God has his eye on the sparrow --- and the little baby gerbil! Smile

Once the mission was accomplished, we all made it to the vespers part of the program just as it was starting. We had to go get a bunch of chairs because there wasn't enough set up for everyone who was there. There were 5 kid acts and 4 adult acts. The kids ALL did a MARVELOUS job!! I personally wanted to give each and everyone of them a prize. All of the adult acts were great too, although the one I enjoyed the most I think was this guy named Larry who did a stand-up commedian act. Let's just say his remarks were so rude (not in a crass way) so bad, that they were laugh out loud hilarious. Smile

After the talent show was over, I went with Nick and Tammy and family to Marble Slab Creamery. We all got a little ice-cream - Nick treated. I told Nick that my mom was wanting him to play at her wedding, and he said they'd have to figure out exactly when they were going to celebrate Tammy's mom's birthday. Tammy had a really bad headache and felt like she needed to get home soon. Before we all left though, Destiny (2 1/2) needed to be changed and Nicholas (4 3/4) needed to go to the bathroom. Nick changed Destiny, and I took Nicholas into the Creamery to the bathroom. It was kind of funny to me, because the last time I took Nicholas to the bathroom was when I babysitted for him and Destiny about a year ago, and when he went he proceded to remove ALL his clothing and kept saying "Lorla! Lorla! See?! I'm a big boy!!" Fortunately, he has learned to use the restroom now without removing all of his clothing! Smile

I am seriously considering going to the regular expensive theatre tomorrow and seeing "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." As fearful as I am of them doing a major injustice to both Douglass Adams and to the book, I feel as though I must see it. If I see it at the matinee time, it will only be about $5, as long as I don't get any snacks - which I usually don't do anyway. I guess I'll see how I feel in the morning.

Oh - today was a no spending day. Yay! Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

16 days left!!!

April 30th, 2005 at 02:56 am

The morning went really pretty well. I only had 10 of my 13 students there, due to a death in one student's family, and two of the others leaving early for an Adventurer's campout (similar to Boy/Girl Scouts). The afternoon went okay - there were a few moments that could have made me very upset, but somehow, I didn't let them get to me. Maybe it's cuz I know the end is near. Smile Smile I stringently tried to ignore M's off the wall behavior as much as possible, and then the few moments he was doing really well, praise him to high heaven. By the afternoon, he had actually settled down somewhat, unfortunately, the other boys took up where he left off. By 3:00 I had 5 students left, and by 3:03 I had one student left. I guess all the parents were anxious to get started on their weekend. Smile

After work I went to Kroger's and picked up some mailing envelopes. I know I could do it much cheaper by picking up a whole box of them from Office Depot or something, but well, I didn't. Smile Then I went home and wrote out the addresses of the four auction winners on notecards which I attatched to the envelopes, and put the books in. While I was at the post office there was a lady ahead of me with two small girls, probably 3 and 4. They were very cute, but not very well behaved. I still have two auctions awaiting payment, otherwise I would've mailed those off too.

Oh yeah, I stopped at Schlotsky's for supper. Smile Then of course, I really really wanted some soda, so I stopped at Kroger's again and picked up some soda, along with a few other items. Today was payday, and normally I would get my car filled up, but I was only down a 1/4 tank since last payday fill-up, and the cheap gas station was out of the regular gas, so I decided to wait till next payday. Smile

I've been thinking some more about my dad and I's livinig arrangements. Right now, I think it's kind of frustrating to me because when I come home and he's here, there really isn't any space that is really "his" space. So, when I walk in and he's in "my" space, using my computer, or having made a mess in the kitchen making his bread machine bread (or more accurately, not having cleaned up the bread crumbs/flour from making bread 4 or 5 days ago), it can be frustrating.

Once my dad finds a place, which will be a 2 bedroom place, and hopefully a 2 bathroom place, I think some of these issues will be resolved. For example, my computer can go in my bedroom, and he can have his computer in his bedroom, as well as all his other stuff. Also, once he hopefully starts making sales, he will be able to contribute to grocery costs. Yes, I am pretty good about getting good deals, and am happy to share what I have, BUT two people consume a stockpile much, MUCH faster than one, and right now he's not even here for meals everyday.

Kashi asked me whether or not I have a choice about living with my dad. Yes, and no. Yes, I could get an apartment all by myself, although without a current job, I'd probably have to do a bit of haggling about a deposit. That would be the most comfortable choice for me in a way - wouldn't have to make any concessions or changes. But, in reality, I don't really think I have a choice. Due to some really stupid choices my dad made a few years ago, he is now facing some tough consequences. He needs a place to call home during the day. He needs to feel supported by family. I know he is a good person, despite the stupid choice he made, and I feel it is only right that I offer him all the support and help that I can. He was tremendously supportive of me when I was going through some tough financial times four or five years ago. So I guess in a way I also feel like I owe him quite a bit.

I think what really frustrated me yesterday was that he was pretty much unwilling to consider the inexpensive places - even though I'd told him upfront that I really wanted to keep my expenses to a bare mininum - and honestly I would think he would too, since right now he is basically being financially supported by his younger sister until he gets his sales going.

My life right now, really is NOT what I pictured it as being like when I got close to the 30 mark (7 months away). I pictured myself as a wife and a mom. Happy and content. Not as a directionless, jobless (though by own choice) singleton with a horrible credit score. I can't say that I am UNhappy really, though I am NOT content with my life. I know God loves me. I know my family loves me, and I know I have friends whom I can turn to when I really need to vent. I really don't want to find myself turning 40 and still not have my dream of my own family. Again, it's not that I'm UNhappy with being single. It does have it's positive side for sure, and I feel that I can be alone and not be lonely. But, I don't feel content being single forever. God formed Eve from Adam's ribs for a reason. People aren't meant to be alone. I've dated two Adam's, but have yet to have found MY Adam. Smile Frown

Ok, sorry for the melodrama. Todd, my ex-bf, says that I'm way too hard on myself. (This was after I apologized to him that almost everytime he IM'd me to say hi, it turned into a woe is me rant from me.) Maybe he's right, I don't know.

Spending Log:
Kroger's: $2.56 (6 mailing envelopes)
Post Office: $9.56 (4 pkgs; Media Mail +Delivery Confirm)
Schlotsky's: $6.15 (sandwich plus chips)
Kroger's: $6.71 (banana's, soda, granola bars, etc)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

17 days!! 100th Post!!!

April 29th, 2005 at 02:09 am

Wow! This is my 100th post! Smile

Today was really a pretty good day overall. M's mom dropped him off, and asked me what time the field trip was. I told her it was at 10:50 A.M. She was like, what will I do till then? I suggested that she would be welcome to stay in the classroom till then, and that I'm sure M would love it. That's what she ended up doing. Smile The kids were amazingly well behaved. Hmm... I wonder if it had anyting to do with M's mom being in the room??? Smile LOL

Chuck E Cheese went well. Unfortunately though, I had miscalcuated how much each child should pay for thier part. I ended up having to chip in $20 of my own, without getting anything myself. One kind of annoying thing: One of the parents who came apparantally didn't understand that each child was to get TWO pieces of pizza, THEN if there were more, we could let people who wanted more have more. She let her son have at least 4 pieces that I know of for sure, maybe more. But really what could I say??? Then I had a bit of an incident with M. It was just about time to go, and M as well as another student went off into the game area. I started to round up the kids, when two of my girls came up and told me that M and the other student had taken a bunch of tokens off of a table. I found them, and found out they had only spent two of the tokens, and then had them go back to that table and put it back. I figured out that that table was where one of the employees had been sitting. I went over to that employee and explained what had happened, and apologized profusely. She pretty much told me to not worry about it, but she appreciated me telling her. I decided to let it rest with that, and not tell M's mom. Later I told Vicki (my principal) about how I'd handled it, and she agreed with my decision as the best. Right as I had all the kids lined up ready, guess who shows up in the lobby with a fistful of tickets which he started throwing up in the air??? Chucky himself! Of course as soon as the kids saw the free tickets, they went deaf to teacher telling them that we HAD to GO! I finally got them back, and we left and arrived back in the school just in time for Chimes.

I love my dad. Really, I do. But I think I'm already getting really, really tired of sharing my space and time with him. This afternoon when I got home, he was here. He had weedeated my backyard, which needed it badly, and I REALLY appreciated. But, I don't know exactly what it is, but I feel so anxious for him to LEAVE almost as soon as I get home. Then of course he's telling me about the places I'd found for him to look at which was in our price range. He liked the places themselves, but didn't like the neighborhoods (I won't go into details, cuz I don't want to offend anyone.) He did find some houses in a neighborhood he liked, which of course was WAY out of what I feel comfortable with paying.

He told me that he'd be willing to pay more than half once he got going with his insurance sales. But, I really don't feel comfortable with that idea at all. I hate betting that he'll be making enough money to cover more than half the rent of an expensive place. I built my financial plan on not spending more than a certain amount for rent a month, plus other expenses. I think I'll probably be able to get a job soon enough, BUT I don't KNOW that for sure, and would rather live in a so-called "less desirable" neighborhood and have a little bit more financial security. I don't want to end up going through all my savings to pay a more expensive rent because my dad has had bad luck with sales. I also don't really know that I want to go less than half on expenses - that it wouldn't feel like I was really pulling my weight financially.
I really am not sure what to do. And I don't have very much more time to really figure it out.

My Ebay sales continue to do well. Three of my four auctions which ended today have already been paid for. So, tomorrow I will need to mail those items out. All but one of my remaining auctions have bidders. Woo Hoo! I need to put up some more auctions!! Smile

Oh! I am so annoyed! Thanks to Bush's speech, all the programming was pushed back an hour. So, my usual Thursday lineup: Survivor, CSI, ER, is not working tonight. CBS showed Survivor, and now CSI. NBC though skipped whatever shows are at 8 and 8:30 normally, and is showing ER. So, that means that CSI and ER are on AT THE SAME TIME!!!!!!!! As much as it pains me, I decided to watch ER instead of CSI. Hope it's worth it tonight. Frown

Spending Log:
Chuck E Cheese: $20 (making up difference)
Dad: $15 (repay of shipping costs)


Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

18 days to go -- The END draws nearer!

April 28th, 2005 at 02:19 am

Today was a so-so day. I am really hating Social Studies. It seems like my boys think that SS class is a time to goof off and be rude to others who are reading. I'm almost thinking of having them go back to going to the rug, if maybe that will put it a little more formal with them - though being on the rug causes problems of its own. Only 7 more SS periods to get through.

I almsot forgot about the meeting after school today. One of my second grade girls had made up a Computer sign up sheet, and my kids were getting to explore it's novlety after dismissal. They were playing so well, that I let them stay in the room taking their turns till nearly four pm (can take them to lunch room at 3:45). R, the teacher who has thrown his name into the hat to be principal, did a pretty good job of stating his vision for our school, as well as answering questions. I do think that he'd do a really good job, but like others expressed, am concerned that he'll try to overdo and burn himself out.

On Monday we are supposed to have another meeting like todays with a different cannidate. This person has a Phd. It should be interesting.

Dad called me today and told me that he had mailed off my package for Ebay. It cost $15 for shipping, instead of the 8.50 that I had charged. He ended up shipping it first class instead of Parcel Post because they wouldn't use the clear tape to attatch the address notecard for PP (which I think is REALLY whack!) It cost an extra dollar and some odd cents. What great customer service. NOT!

My Ebay sales are going really, really well. Smile I'm as pleased as punch. It really may be a reality for me to fund my "getaway" just from my Ebay sales - which would be just awesome, since I hadn't counted on any Ebay money in my caculations.

Dad also told me that he actually got serious today and started looking at some houses/apartments. He looked at that one house I'd found for $600/mo, but told me that the neighborhood was ... umm.. questionable. He is extra anxious now to get a place that is closer to Cleburne, becuase he found out today that my mom's fiance is ultra insecure about him using my mom's house to shower and change clothes at. Honestly, to me, some of the things he did make me think he sounds like a control freak -- i.e. changed the code on the entry gate to the driveway AND refused to tell mom what the new code was (she has an entry remote, but still!) disabled the satelite runnoff in the room my dad has been using to change/relax in, etc.

I got an email from my best friend in academy - Charity!!! She also sent me a link to a photo album of her family. She has a little 3 yo boy who is adorable. Smile It's really funny because at the same time I had decided to try to find her again, she was doing her level best to find me again -- even got my uncles email address in CA (but didn't email him because she found me on classmates first). LOL!! We're connected I tell you, connected! Smile

I now have more than enough spots for my kids for our field trip to Chuck E Cheese tomorrow. Yay! It looks like two of my kids won't be going though -- 1 - because his step-dad's grandma died, and they're attending her funeral -- and 2 - because she and her mom are having some problems, and I guess her mom is taking away the field trip as a punishment. So, right now it looks like it'll be 11 kids, and 3 or 4 adults. Oh, really good news, M's mom will be driving, so guess who I'm TOTALLY putting in charge of him???? LOL!!! I'm going to allow myself to spend $5 on Ski Ball. I absolutely LOVE that game, and don't really get to play it that often. Smile Smile

Today was a no-spend day (I'll reimburse my dad tomorrow for the shipping). Smile

Well, I think I may actually have time to do a little bit of reading (an off-line book, btw!) before heading off to bed. Though, I really should probably be doing some GRADING! (Yes, unfortunately the SAME grading from last week, with several more days worth of work added on.) Frown

Keeping It Frugal In Texas,
Laura

19 Days!!!! Oh Yeah!!!

April 27th, 2005 at 03:09 am

Today really overall was a pretty darn good day. Smile I had my aide for as much as I was supposed to, and even though she for some reason thinks that it's okay to be READING while she's in the classroom or supervising kids on the playground ... she does help keep the fires out enough to make my day more manageable. M wasn't too bad today at all - he had his moments for sure, but nothing terribly memorable.

After school I went straight home so I could get the rest of the books in the set that somebody bought from me last week. I could only find 6 of the 9 book set!! I was going crazy! I went back to the school, and found our secretary who happened to have a key to my filing cabinet which was the only other place in my classroom I could think of (remember, my set of keys is lost - on that key ring was a key for said filing cabinet which some littel industrious sort locked on me!) The missing books weren't there. So I went back home and started tearing my house apart looking for them. I even had my dad move out the freezer so I could look behind it (it's under the stairwell where I do have stuff stored). No luck. I'm totally going out of my mind wondering where the missing books are - thinking that my Ebay rep was about to get its first negative. I make dad and I supper (if you call warming up corn dogs and GG frozen veggies, supper - LOL) and I'm still fuming about where those books are. My dads about to leave, and I decide to look in one more place - the area where I have all the boxes of teaching materials of my mom's that I've slowly sold on Ebay -- Guess what?? There I found my books!!! Yahoo!!! I packed the whole set in a box that was just perfect for it, and asked my dad to mail it tomorrow, since the PO was already closed for the day. He told me he would. Whooh!

Oh, in case you're wondering why I couldn't mail it myself tomorrow? Well, today Vicki told all of us that tomorrow after school we are going to have a meeting with one of the Ed Superintendants (not the one who doesn't know how long I've worked here - a different one) because our 5th/6th grade teacher has put his name in the hat to be principal next year. I guess we can ask him about whatever concerns or suggestions we might have. The only concern I'd have is how he'd continue with the Athletic's program which he pretty much spearheads, as well as do all that's required of a principal - not to mention if his wife is already not happy with how little he's home now -- Smile I'm not sure that I'll really say all that much though, since I won't be around next year. So, who knows how long the meeting will last. Hopefully not TOO long. Ugh.

My Ebay auctions are going tremendously well! I put some more books up this afternoon (after finding the lost books!). Out of 15 auctions that are up, 7 of them have bids. Smile Smile One of the books is bid up to within just a few dollars of what you could get it new!

Last night right after I had finished up here, I got an IM from my ex-bf Todd. We had a pretty good conversation (about an hour or so). One of the things he mentioned to me was if I'd be interested in getting my Prop and Caus license, because he's probably going to be needing a secretary/assiatant in the near future. I told him that is sounded like an interesting idea, but I wondered how his fiance would feel about it. He told me that his fiance was good friends with two of his ex-gf's and he didn't think she'd mind.
One really good thing about it would be that I already know that I get along well with the boss! LOL I'm not really how serious he was about the idea, but it sure did give me food for thought. Smile

Well, since I didn't mail out the package today, I ended up not spending any money. Yay!

I didn't sleep very well at all last night - I think I got too out of synch with my normal sleep schedule. So, hopefully tonight I'll be able to sleep better.

Well, that's all folks. Hope you had a great one! Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

ETA: I was getting worried about not having enough drivers for the field trip to Chuck E Cheese on Thursday. But today I think I snagged a driver who can take 6! Then if my aide goes and drives the other aides van she can take 5 and I can take the rest! I really hope it works out -- I love Chuck E Cheese's -- Where a kid can be a kid! Smile

A qucik Yahoo! :)

April 26th, 2005 at 11:29 am

Morning y'all! I have to go eat breakfast and finish getting ready for work, but I just had to share this! This morning I checked my Ebay auctions . . . and . . . ALL of them have bids!!!!!! Yahoo!!!! I'm gonna have to get busy and get some more auctions up -- hmmm, can I find another $200 or so worth of books to auction??? Smile

Have an awesome day!

Keeping It Frugal In Texas,
Laura

Arrrghhh!!!!

April 26th, 2005 at 03:27 am

Ok, I really, really need to be getting shower and going to bed right now. But I am just SO frustrated!!!

I downloaded a different browser "Fire Fox" a few months ago. I have LOVED it - especially the tabs feature. I didn't have any trouble switching between it and Internet Explorer for the sites that can't handle FF. Today though, I decided to go ahead and upgrade to the latest version of FF. I think now that that was a BIG mistake!!

The new version works just fine on my computer, with one big exception. ALL of my security settings are on hyper mode where they won't let ANYTHING through, and neither IE or FF will let any of the changes I make to the security settings stick!!!!

The way I found out about this was when I decided that I wanted to download the music from the movie I saw yesterday -- "The Wedding Date" - it had an awesome set of music. I wanted to have it on my Mp3 player. So, I went to Wall-Mart.com to search for one of the songs. Of course, it said it wouldn't work in FF, so I had to switch to IE. Well, it wouldn't work in IE either, because the little Privacy Icon thing kept popping up!!! I tried going through yahoo.music.com -- and would you believe it, that didn't work either!!!

I'm SO frustrated!!!

In other news, I got absolutely nothing of value done today. Didn't do lesson plans. Didn't grade papers. Didn't do a lick of cleaning. Just plain vegetated all day in front of the computer. Nice huh. My feeble excuse is that it was raining most of the day. :roll eyes: :sarcastic:

I did do some checking into various hotels in San Antonio and in Fredricksburg. I was going to check some more prices on KOA campgrounds/cabins, but never got around to it (got distracted by the whole trying to download music thing). I think I've almost decided to go with this one hotel in San Antonio - it's a suite, has a microwave and fridge - it's within a reasonable walking distance of the Riverwalk - it has a complementary breakfast - and it gives you a complementary entrance to the Bally's fitness center across the street! It also is about $100 less than what three nights in the least expensive B&B would have been. I'm seriously, seriously considering it. I'm really not sure that I want to go camping by myself, and also don't know that I want to borrow all the various equipment I'd have to, and worry about getting it all returned in good shape. Will still have to think about that I guess.

Maybe I could fund my get away with my Ebay sales? I just checked my auctions, and 4 of my 5 auctions are selling right now. Between the one I sold last week (on Thursday I think) and these, I'll have a little over $120, maybe more if the other auction gets bid on. I have a lot more books I can put up. I think I'm hitting it at the right time of year - just when teachers are getting their new assignments for the coming year, and student teachers are trying to begin their teacher resource library.

I'm getting a little bit annoyed with 123 Ink Jets. I bought a new ink cartridge from them on the 10th, and it was shipped on the 12th - but it still hasn't arrived. I've bought from them before, and it's never taken this long. I can't be without my printer this long!!!

Ok, I really really ought to be going. /begin TV AHolic/ One more thing before I go - if any of you watch Everwood, you'll know what I'm talking about -- Ephram, are you out of your mind????? /end TV Aholic/

No spending today - yeah, cuz I didn't leave the house! Frown Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

Saturday and Sunday R&R :)

April 25th, 2005 at 02:49 am

Hmm.... Saturday. What did I do? Well, it all started with my wonderful (arghhh!!!) cat waking me up at 7am when I hadn't gotten to bed till after 1 a.m. Then of course I couldn't get back to sleep, so I got on, what else, the computer. I then was reading one of my teacher forums and someone mentioned a great website -- http://bibliophil.org/default.asp
-- which is essentially a site where people can have a virtual list of ALL the books they own, have ever read, or would like to read. Wowsers! You can make your list public or private. I spent about four or five hours there making a starting list. You list it by ISBN #'s. I think I got up to a little over 100 books.

Later that evening after a long nap, I did a lot of online research on Bed and Breakfasts and other places to vacation to. Those places sure are pricey, and such a variety. I also was up late waiting for the new Albie's list to be put up. I'll have to tell more about that on Sunday's bit. Smile

Otherwise, Saturday was a No-Spend day. Smile

Okay, now for Sunday.
Monkey (my cat) let me sleep in till almost 10 a.m. Wasn't that nice of him? Smile When I got up I posted on a couple forums I'm part of about my ponderings on what to do for my vacation. Then I got my act together, and made it over to Albertson's. There were a number of things that weren't good deals, even with the coupons, but there were enough other things that were great deals. Smile During my first run I bought a double paper, then went out to my car and got the coupon inserts out. Then preceded to cut out the coupons I wanted. Then I went back inside and did my third and final run. Probably my best, and favorite deal, was the half-gallon Dreyer's ice-cream for . . . .$.25!!!!!!! Luckily I only had two coupons for this. Smile

After my Albie's runs were finished, I went to see "The Wedding Date" at the dollar theatre. It was very very good, although I'm not sure I really like the premise of it. One line in it that I'm not sure I agree with or not, (not verbatium) "A woman's love life is what she wants it to be."

Wow! I just had an interesting experience. I was sitting here typing away, and all of a sudden my doorbell rings. First wild thought that goes through my mind is it's either my ex-bf Todd (who has a habit of showing up unannounced) or more inconceivable, my other ex-bf, Scott. Well, anyway, it turns out its one of my neighbors. Apparantlly her car had broken down and she'd had to have it towed. The tow truck guy couldn't get her car into her space unless I and the guy next door to me moved our cars. So, I went and moved my car by the dumpster (should have went down the hill, but wasn't sure if I could get around the tow truck) the other guy moved his car into an unmarked spot down the hill and went back inside his place. I, on the otherhand, had to stay till the bitter end, cause I couldn't leave my car by the dumpster! So, the tow truck guy manuvers around and gets the ladies car in her spot. Then, he just sits there, idiling. I'm wondering why he's just sitting there, and wanting to get back inside. The ladies husband? comes over to me and asks me if I have two fives for a ten so they can get this guy out of here. I guess he would only take the exact amount. Thankfully, I did have two fives. So after a good 20 minutes or so (though felt like lots longer) I was able to park back in my spot. Both people were thanking me over and over. I was just like "these things happen - hope things go better with your car."

Ok. Let's see, where was I. LOL! After the movie I stopped at one of my favorite Oriental food places - The Noodle Bar - and picked up two to go orders. Ate half (put the two different orders into two halves) and then of course, what else, spent some time on the old computer. Smile

Spending Log:
Albertsons:
1st run: ~12.00 (saved $19.00)
2nd run: 3.69 (saved $23.00)
Noodle Bar: 10.32 (heh, didn't save anything) Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

20 days to go! Long weekend!!!!!!!

April 23rd, 2005 at 05:37 am

Today was not fun at school. All of the kids were in rare form - even a couple of my normally well behaved little girls were being hard to deal with. Then again, maybe it was due to my lack of sleep last night.

You see, last night after I had posted here, and was throughly enjoying the new CSI, and anticipating the new ER, I received a phone call. Normally, especially since I don't have a TIVO (drooling at the mouth for wishing I had one) I don't answer the phone during programs I WANT to watch (i.e. Lost). But, I am glad that I did last night. It was my roommate from college (freshman and sophmore years) whom I consider to be one of my best friends. I'd sent her an email asking her if she could play her harp in my mom's wedding. The short answer on that is, probably not likely. Oy vey! Her life these past few months has just been awful. Talk about thinking you have it bad, but always being able to find someone else who has it worse. She's someone who CANNOT handle stress very well. Her situation probably in a way is similar to my life recently, she just handlles things by freaking out, wheras, I tend to eat. We talked for probably a good three hours or more.

I didn't get the item that had sold yesterday shipped today, because when I got home, my dad was here and he was in a "needy" mood. To top things off, he'd done an extremely stupid thing (parked in a handicapped space w/o proper permit) and had gotten ticketed for it. I VERY badly wanted to say something, and unfortunately, did let it slip out after he found out how much the ticket would cost him "Was parking in the handicap space worth $257???" He wasn't very happy with me right then. Later on we went out to Jason's Deli. He got the broccoli cheese soup, and actually complained to the manager guy that it wasn't hot enough for him (after having gone back and had the kitchen microwave it for him). The manager was very apologetic and everything, but I can just imagine him rolling his eyes as soon as he left us.

Once my dad left for the weekend, I was able to get to Albertsons, although much later in the day than I would have liked to have done. I think I did pretty well. Not quite as much stuff as I got last time, but it is all stuff I'll actually use. Some of the things I got coupons for from Ebay were not a very good deal, so I didn't use them. One coupon though that I used 11 of (bought 10, had 1) was the one for Nancy's Quiche. It was a $.65/1 coupon, tripled to $1.95. The Quiche was $2.49, which made them each $.54. Those coupons alone took off over $21 from my entire order. Smile Smile I also was kicking myself for having used my Green Giant coupons last time - I think they'd still have been good today - GG was on sale 3/$4 which would have made the price after tripled cpn for $.60/3 VERY good. Oh well, who would've known??

Now, the reason I mentioned getting to Albertson's later than I wanted to. Tonight there was a program I had wanted to attend which started at 7:30. I wasn't quite sure exactly how to get there, and wanted to leave by 7 p.m. I ended up getting back from Albertsons at just a little after 7 p.m. I rushed around like a Banshee putting stuff away, and trying to make myself look presentable. Then tried to get better directions. By this time though it was almost 7:20, and the directions I got said to expect at least a 20 minute drive. So, after all that, I decided to just forget it and stay home and relax. Which, is what I did. Smile

Now it is quite late, and I really should be getting to bed. I spend entirely too much time on the computer!!
Oh, my Ebay auctions are doing well - at least two of the five have bids - one of them has 5 bids!! Ya hoo! All the more money to put in my "Take this job and shove it" account. Smile Smile

Almost forgot to add - two emails I got today. 1) Email from singles website with the extremely rude person - apparantlly someone else reported him to the site, and he's been banned! 2) Email from my high-school best friend - she found me on classmates.com !!!!! I guess she had been looking for me too! Smile

Spending Log:
Albertsons: $28.37 (saved $63.02) I love coupons! Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

21 days to go - yay Ebay!!

April 22nd, 2005 at 01:08 am

Today was an okay day at school --- read --- the Music teacher was there!!! My new 2nd grade boy and my other second grade boy were really gettting on my last nerve today during Math. We were doing problem solving where they had to decide how to solve word problems -i.e. multiply, divide, add, subtract. We did the first two or three problems together, then my three girls took off after they got the idea. The two boys though -- they BOTH just kind of got stuck, and then REFUSED to even TRY. I really really tried to be patient. But finally I told them that if they wanted my help, that they had to at least ATTEMPT to solve the problem themself. My three girls were finished, and the two boys were still stuck on the SAME problem! It was time for the kids to go to Chimes. I told the boys they weren't going anywhere until their Math was done. Lo and behold, they all of a sudden decided that they were Unstuck, and ten minutes later, both of them were finished! ARGHHH!!!!

Before school this morning I decided to go ahead and list a number of items on Ebay. I listed five items, with four of them being Buy it Now. Well, one of the items was this six-book set of writing lesson books that cost me $160 plus shipping last summer (yes, I had thought LONG and HARD about that before buying them - they were worth it though). I listed them for a BIN price of $60 --- and someone bought it within about 20 minutes of my listing it!!!! Wowie!!! I have a bid on one of my other items too. Yay!

I had also bid on 5 different sets of Morningstar coupons, with a max price of $5. I got outbid on ALL of them! So I rebid up to $7 on two of them - and got outbid on one. So, rebid up to $8 on that one. I think the auction is over now, and hopefully I won those two auctions. The cpns are $1/one and good till December - so in other words, REALLY GOOD. Whoever had those coupons is making a killing!

I had TWO awesome awesome things happen when I got home from school today. First, in the mail I got the envelope of coupons I'd ordered from Ebay - just in time for Albie's big double dollar sale! Second, and even better, I had a message on my answering machine from Charity!!!!!!! She and I were bosom buddies my Junior year of high school, and kept in close contact up till about six years ago when I moved back to Texas. I'd tried to get in contact with her since then through her brother, and then again when I went to my 10-year reunion, but no luck. Well, this last weekend I decided to try classmates.com again - kind of on a whim. Her brother was still on there, so I decided to email him again about getting in contact with her. I guess he got ahold of her, and maybe she googled my phone number or something. Woo Hoo!!! I wonder if she knows anything about Alex, the other member of our Three Muskateers group?? Smile I just can't tell you how excited and happy this makes me!!! Maybe I can get her to come for my mom's wedding too, and then four of my favorite people in the whole wide world will all be in the same place at the same time!! That would be too awesome for words!!!!!! Maybe even get Alex there too -Wowsie!!!!

I really really wanted Pizza Hut tonight - and Soda -- but I resisted temptation. I'm holding out on all my spending for tomorrow's Albie's deal. Smile Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

22 days!

April 21st, 2005 at 02:20 am

Actually had my aide today for both reading and math!! What a difference it makes!!! Overall the day went okay. M was okay, but not great. After PE wasn't very good. I was trying to read a book to them for Science, and several of my boys and one of my girls were just being incrediably disruptive and rude. I ended up not finishing the book, then walked around the room (they were all at their seats) and told the kids who HAD been paying attention that they could turn their paper in and choose a center activity to do. Those who had been rude/disruptive were left at their seats watching everyone else get to do a choice activity. After about five or six minutes (when I had cooled down a bit) I went around the room to each of them and asked them if they knew why they had had to stay at their seats. They all knew exactly why. Ok, so listening to a book isn't the most exciting Science lesson, but EVERY lesson can't be totally hand's on and just fun. Arghhh!!! I just have to keep reminding myself that its almost over.

My school keys have been missing since Friday after school. I've looked everywhere I can think of for them, even in places where I know they COULDN"T be. I'm starting to get really worried. Without them, I have no way of getting into my classroom during the weekend (not that i've been doing much of that lately anyway ... but still) AND on that keyring is the ONLY key to the big storage cabinet with ALL my construction paper and other important supplies, which someone of course turned the lock on over the course of the weekend.

After school I went to Albertson's and picked up some milk and OJ and banana's, and some other items (ok, ok, ice cream, ugh!). I couldn't find my regular Albertson's swipe card, so had to key in my number from my keyring card (which I can't swipe anymore - too faded).

Tomorrow is Thursday, and will HOPEFULLY be a musical afternoon - and a bit of a break for me. Then I just have to get through Friday, and then have a THREE_DAY_WEEKEND!!!! Then after that, 20 days/4 weeks to go!! It's hard to believe that I'm actually getting this close to the end. Sometimes it seems like the end is never going to come, but I know it's there, I just have to keep hanging on.

I tried to find information on Planet Pizza, which is where the kids wanted to go for their field trip. But the only ones I could find are in Conneticut and New York. Maybe the ones in TX aren't online, or they go by a different name?? I'd much much rather go to a place I know. One of the parents was talking to me today and I mentioned about Planet Pizza, and she was like, "You don't really want to go there do you?" I asked her why not, and she told me that it was just like Chuck E' Cheese's. Smile The thing is, I actually LIKE Chuck E' Cheese's!! LOL I told her though that it was what the kids had chosen as their reward, so I was okay with it. Smile

Yeah, Kashi, I agree, that guy from yesterday was a weirdo! Once I figure out a little bit more about what exactly I'm going to be doing with my life -LOL! I plan to try and find some kind of volunteer work, which might put me in contact with hopefully a few eligible non-weirdo's. Smile (As well as get me out of the house and away from feeling sorry for myself!) As far as bookstores go, well, for my own financial well-being, I have to severely limit the amount of time I spend in those places. Smile Smile

Oh, yeah. The grading STILL isn't done, and now there's the Social Studies test to grade too. Smile Frown

Spending Log:
Today:
Albertsons: $10.65


Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

23 to go!

April 20th, 2005 at 02:43 am

Today was a so-so day. We had FOUR staff members out, so I obviously did not have an aide. I really, really could've used her during reading. Math went okay - the first graders seemed to grasp the concept of two-digit addition quite easily. My second graders also were enjoying doing the division. I also showed them how just like addition and subtraction are related in "fact families", multiplication and division are also related in "fact families". All of them except for my newest boy really seemed to get a kick out of it. My newest boy mainly just sat there drawing on his board, and didn't really do anything until I got after him. It's not that he isn't bright, because he is, I'm really not sure what it is, but it is very frustrating. My other four second graders are very used to me and how I do math class (lots of hands-on - sometimes like this week, two class periods of solely hands-on, no worksheets) while he may have been used to only worksheetitus, and not actually having someone close enough to him to realize that he wasn't working.
M was okay today. Less okay than yesterday, but not terrible.

As we were coming back from lunch recess, the kids found a baby bird on the ground by the front church doors. It didn't have any feathers, and I wasn't really sure what it was at first, till I saw the beak. It was pretty sad. It flopped around a few flops, then it was motionless - I guess it was dead at that point. A couple of my kids wanted to pick it up and take it inside, but I told them that there really wasn't anything we could do for it. I was very proud of my kids though later. Before we got to it when going out for PE, I told them not to stop or touch, but they could look. Both ways, ALL of them did just that!

We voted today for our second money jar reward. They wanted a to go swimming for a field trip. I told them that that kind of a field trip would have to wait till later in May when it was warmer and more pools would actually be open. So, they agreed to go to a place called Planet Pizza instead. I've never been there before, and would personally prefer to go to Mr. Gatti's which is closeby the school, and I know has a good selection of games. But, it was their reward. So, next Thursday we'll be going there for lunch, and games -- then HOPEFULLY be coming back in time for Chimes and Choir.

My little sweetheart whom I've been lucky enough to have for two years, brought me a bag of gripper's today (things to hold pencils/pens in). She told me that she and her mom had found them at Wal-Mart in the dollar section. UGH! I asked at least six different people if they had them - and no go. When her mom came to pick her up after school, I asked her how much I owed her (after thanking her of course!) and she told me to not worry about it - that it was a gift. Wow! I know why D is such a sweetheart. Smile I had thought I'd bought them 3/$1, but it turns out that it was 3/$3 -- she bought 4 packages (which is all they had) -- that's $12!!! I really, really, REALLY hope the kids don't destroy these ones - especially with less than five weeks left (yahoo!!!!)

When I got home, dad was here watching tv. He had done my laundry for me - even stripped the sheets off my bed (which I'd forgotten to do). Smile He's been using my grandma's cell phone since he's been here, and the ringer had been on vibrate only for the past several weeks, and he'd missed a lot of calls. Also, he couldn't check voice mail because grandma had never used it/set it up. So, today the owner's manual for it arrived that grandma had sent. It took me about 5 or 6 minutes to 1)figure out how to get the phone to ring out loud again (off vibrate) and 2)set up the voicemail and set a new password (the general password was just the 7-digit phone number!!) Dad fixed the shelf in my fridge which had fallen down, and hes going to pick up some more lightbulbs to replace a couple that have burnt out. I love my dad. Smile

Last night as I was about to log off, I got an IM from Todd (two ex-bf's ago). It was really good talking with him. I was telling him about how frustrated I feel in not knowing how to start up a new relationship any more, especially with everything going on in my life right now. He told me I should just be honest. So, I typed out a pretend "honest" conversation with someone new - he told me that if someone cared about me, they'd be able to accept all that. I then told him that some/most of that would easily come up VERY EARLY in a getting to know you discussion. He then told me that he'd vouch for me - as a person, and um as something else too. Smile Yeah, I'm just going to call up my ex-bf and have him tell new guy - yeah, Laura really is a great, together person, and her family really isn't as messed up as they may sound right now. LOL!

I got two interesting emails this morning. One was from Scott(most recent ex-bf), just mainly chit chatting. The other was from this 53 yr old who had sent me a "smile" from the dating site. Not only was he 24 years older than me, he also was allergic to cats. I wanted to be polite, so I had sent him a note thanking him for his smile, but that he was a bit out of my age range, and also seeing as though I am owned by a cat, his allergies could be a problem. Well, I thought it was a fairly polite way of saying I'm not interested. But I guess he didn't take it that way. Though, I really hope his reply to me was toungue in cheek and not serious. He ranted about how he never said he wanted to date/marry me, and that he hadn't realized till he looked at my email that I was too old for him, apparantlly I had put a picture of myself from a few years ago (it actually is about two years old), and that once women are over 27 they get frumpy. And that I must only be on this site because I can't get dates in real life. And that the reason he put on his profile that he was allergic to cats was because he eats cats for breakfast. (WHat???) He's either a lunatic or has a seriously misguided sense of humor. I thought about replying to him and saying something like "sorry for having replied to you - hope you take some anger management courses or something. But, I think I will probably just ignore him, and perhaps block him from sending me mail. Lord, save me from dating!!!!!

Anyway. Today was a no-spend day. It also was a day where I deposited my $60 bonus check from AFLAC (think of the little duck in the commercials) for my annual physical. I'll be transferring that money to my ING long-term account. Smile

Oh yeah. The grading? Didn't get done. Probably won't get done tonight either, considering that its nearly bedtime for me. Smile
Oh well. What are they going to do? Fire me? Hee hee!

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

24 days, and another surprisingly okay day

April 19th, 2005 at 01:17 am

The morning went beautifully. For the most part, all the kids were really behaving well, right up to Math time (about 12:30). During Math my two second grade boys (mainly the new one though) were really being pains in the ol' behind. We were starting our unit on division - my girls reallys seemed to be getting a kick out of it, and one of the boys for awhile - the new boy just sat there goofing off and not really listening, then saying "I don't get it!" over and over. UGH! Then I was introducing double digit addition to my first graders. They were having a lot of trouble following the simple instruction of making the number 31 with the place value materials, and then LEAVING THEM ON THE TABLE! I finally had to send one of the little boys (not M this time!) out to the office. I sent him witha note saying that he was to do 30 +/- sentences, and then write a note to me about why he'd been sent out of the room. Vicki apparentally missinterpreted what I meant, and thought I wanted him to write 30 ACTUAL sentences!!! Yeah, sure, this is a kid who on a good day, when he's motivated, will put out MAYBE 6 - 8 sentences. I explained to her after school that I had meant addition and subtraction sentences, and that it was something I"d had them do many times before, and he himself should have realized what I'd meant - I think he was pulling her leg. Oh well. M had a wonderful morning, and the afternoon was so-so, but still better than most days recently.

The money jar was filled today. So that means that tomorrow we're going to have to vote on a party or a field trip. I'm going to suggest the party/ft on Monday (hee hee, no school on Monday!) Smile I brought home a whole big stack of papers to grade while watching Everwood (new! finally!) and Supernanny (found her book at my library - it's on hold.)

The whole thing I was writing about Scott yesterday? Well, I think I'm already starting to feel silly for having written any of it down. Oh well, wouldn't be the first time I felt silly about something I'd written.

My dad called and said that he'd been able to set an appointment (selling insurance) and that he'd be here tomorrow and he'd do my laundry for me if I set it out. Wink What a sweetie. Smile Smile

K, better go. Everwood is on now. Smile Smile Smile Need to grade papers too (wonder if I'll actually do it - hmmmm.)

Spending Log:
Nada Zilch Zippo Yay! Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

My weekend

April 18th, 2005 at 03:31 am

Saturday:
I made it to the early service. It was pretty good. There was a guest speaker, and for the most part I enjoyed his sermon. The only thing that kind of annoyed me about it though was that he told several stories without the ending. Sabbath School was okay. Jessie made a comment about how long it had been since I'd been there. Nice. Thanks Jess, way to make me feel comfortable coming back. I just was like, yeah, it has been awhile. I left afterwards without really talking to anyone. Next weekend theres supposed to be some kind of young adult retreat - Friday night and all day Saturday - focused on Emotional Health. I'll try it out on Friday night, and then see about Saturday.

When I got home I really was kind of planning on just vegging out, and reading a book. My mom called me though and invited me to an early supper with her and her fiance Dave at Olive Garden. Well, now how could I resist an invite to Olive Garden, just my very favorite resturant! So, I did veg out a bit, but just ate a light snack. But did spend some time writing an email back to my ex-bf Scott. I copied and pasted the one he hadn't received, and then just updated it.

I also finally opened up the home business package I'd received on Tuesday. It turns out it was for the company Herbalife. Wish I would've known that before ordering the package. It would've saved me some time, as well as my "personal coach." Oh well, I knew it sounded to good to be true.

Supper at Olive Garden went well. I was kind of in a talkative mode I guess, and sort of almost took over the conversation. Mom did tell me that Ryan had called and apologized about the whole check mess. I was glad to hear that.

After supper, we went to the Saturday evening service at Prestonwood Baptist Church, which my mom's fiance Dave is a member of. I'd heard advertisements on the radio before of it, but had never seen it. OH MY! It is HUGE! Let me put it this way - It has a membership of 25k. It has two bookstores, and a Starbucks. On Sundays it apparentally has 400 different Sunday School classes. It felt almost like one of our college campuses, but it was only a church. The service itself was pretty good. Great music, and the sermon was on 1 Corr 3:1-8. The pastor basically talked about how Christians should have joy in all things, no matter what.

After the service, I went back home and spent way too much time on the internet again. One thing I did was write back the divorced OK guy and basically told him that I would be fine corresponding with him as a friend, but I didn't feel comfortable with anything more than that until the "waiting period" was officially over. I also told him that with the way my life is right now, I wasn't really sure that I should be considering getting into a relationship, at least not until I have a firmer idea of what direction I'm going to take. I also told him that I wasn't totally sure that I was completely over my ex-bf (which is true, though I don't think I could ever give him a second chance even if he were to ask for it.) Anyway, I think it did the trick. He hasn't responded to me, even though I've seen him on the site a number of times since then.

Sunday:
Well, I WAS going to go see the movie "Wedding Date" at the dollar theatre, but got distracted doing things on the internet again. I really don't get how I can waste so much time on the net. I didn't get anything done today. I didn't do laundry, I didn't do lesson plans, I still haven't done a trash run (which I *must* do tonight)! I didn't even watch Desperate Housewives or read any of my book! UGH!

I really think I'm going to regret not having gone in today. This week I am not going to have any help whatsoever. Tomorrow we'll have TWO teacher's gone AND one of the two aides -- so of course MY aide gets to fill in for everybody. The rest of the week one teacher and the aide will still be gone - so I still won't have an aide for the whole week!!!! Wahhh!!!

Oh, my mom asked me at supper on Saturday what part I'd like to have in the wedding. I told her I had no idea, whatever she wanted me to do as long as it didn't involve speaking in front of people. She also asked me if I would ask my friend Tracy if she could come (from FL) with her Harp and play for the ceremony, as well as my friend Karin (from NM) to play her flute. I told her I would talk to both of them. It would be so totally awesome to have my three best friends all meet each other! But, in a way this is really really hard for me. I always imagined that I'd be asking them to play *for me* at *MY* wedding - NOT at my *Mom's* wedding! I guess this is part of whats so hard for me to digest. Here my mom is getting married for the fourth time (3rd person) and here I am still single with no real prospects of that changing. She had me when she was 24 , and was 29 when she had my brother. I'm 29.

Why is it that some people have such an easy time finding someone with whom they connect with enough to move into a marriage with? I'm someone who really truly desires to be a wife and a mom. I don't really give a rip about a "career" path or whatever. I really wish I knew what it is about me that has blocked this from happening for me. My last two bf's both went on and on about what a wonderful, loving, caring, intelligent, etc etc person I was ... but they both ended the relationship -- one because he thought he was going to try to get back to his ex-wife (they had two girls) -- and the other one, I think mainly because he was 38 and had only dated me and one other person -wanted to see what else was out there. The person before either of them, I ended the relationship because I realized that no matter how much we loved each other, no matter how much each other's families loved each other(him and I), that there were some major issues which could be compromised on *before* children came, but once children were in the picture (which we both very much wanted), those issues would have caused a lot of strife and resentment. It took me six years after ending that relationship before I tried dating again.

These past few days Scott, my most recent ex-bf has emailed me more than he has in the past six-months. I'm really not sure exactly what is up with that, except that maybe he is feeling lonely or something. Maybe he's realized that not everyone is willing to put up with or accept people as they are. The very last time I saw him, I told him that I hoped he would find what he was looking for. He told me that maybe he'd find out in a few months that he'd already found what he was looking for, but knew that I wouldn't be waiting around for that possibility. If that's what's going on here - if he's "testing" the waters, so to speak - I don't really know what'll I do. I have forgivien him for some of the things that happened, but forgiving is easier sometimes than forgetting. He's not the person I've had the strongest connection to, but he is the person I've had the most in common with, likes/dislikes, future goals, views on the world, moral values, etc. It would honestly take a LOT of convincing for me to give him a second chance, for me to trust him again, if that's even what he's after. I'm really probably reading a lot more into this recent spate of emails than there really is, and a few days/weeks from now will feel really silly to have even written these thoughts down.

Ok, I've really gotten off topic here. Sorry about that. My journal entries lately have been a lot of selfish blathering - whoa is me. I guess the whole thing of my mom getting married and finding out that two people I used to date are engaged, kinda set me in that kind of a mood.

Well - my spending log:
Saturday:
Wal-greens: $10.65 -- (soda, ice cream, ????)
Sunday:
Ebay: $5.38 ( a bunch of different sets of coupons for the upcoming Albertson's sale)

--also bid on 6 auctions for Morningstar coupons - was outbid on one already - if win the remaining 5, could cost up to $25 for up to 60 $1 coupons good till December.

Ok, time for shower and bed. Will have to get up early again to try to prepare for the day.

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

25 days :)

April 16th, 2005 at 04:02 am

Y'all are gonna be in total shock when I say this . . . But . . . today was actually a GOOD DAY!!! M fell asleep again during worship and slept right up till recess. Then the rest of the day he was awesomely well behaved! The other kids were also pretty well behaved - not perfect, but SO MUCH better than this past few weeks!!! I actually got to the end of the day without feeling completely stressed out! Woo Hoo!

My second graders had their multiplication test today - and all of them did tres magnificque(sp?) on it - just awesome. Smile

After work I went to Washington Mutal and deposited my Slush Fund check, and got out my gas/grocery money. (Today was payday). Then I drove a bazillion miles to the closest Kroger's with a gas station so I could use my 10 cents/gallon discount. I'm not real sure how much money I actually saved - but it was better than letting that discount go to waste. Smile

Then tonight of course I've spent WAY too much time on the computer. One thing I did was to read the last couple recaps of The West Wing which for some reason I had stopped watching most of this season. But I think I've gotta start watching it again. When I read the part where Josh is talking to Leo about who Santos (mmm. . Jimmy Smits - NYPD Blue) wanted for a VP -- and Josh goes "YOU!" I have to admidt that if my neighbor was NOT awake at that time, and is a light sleeper, that my SQUEE!!! and my "Right On!'s" etc., more than likely woke him up. I had of course at first gone to the TWOP forum to read the Survivor forum and the CSI forum, but they were both "down for maintenance." I guess TWOP is growing faster than it can manage. Smile

Thank you to all who gave me your opinon on the divorced OK guy. After talking it over some more with my best friend Tammy, I think I am going to end my correspondence with him.

Oh MY! Something I got in the mail today kinda caught me off guard. About three years ago this guy in Arkansas started writing to me (same dating site). We had a lively correspondence for quite awhile. At one point he even sent me his money collection from around the world for me to share with my class. (Which I of course sent back to him.) I'm not really quite sure why, but eventually the correspondence just kind of fizzled out. The last email I got from him was some legal mumbo jumbo having to do with his custody battle of his daughter from his ex-fiance'. So . . anyway . . today I got a Wedding Announcement --- from him and his new? fiance! It took me about 8 or 9 minutes looking at his name before it finally took as to who it was. LOL! I wonder if he told his fiance' just how he knows me, and why he wanted to put me on the invitation list - actually, I'd kinda like to know why myself! Smile Smile

Well, I probably ought to be heading off to bed. I really am going to try to make it to church tomorrow. I've gotten into a very bad habit of skipping lately, especially with the Net 05' meetings.

Spending Log:
Kroger's Gas Station: $10.00 ($2.01 with discount)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

26 days!

April 15th, 2005 at 03:24 am

Awful day. Knew better than to take this class on a field trip. The museum was okay, but not terribly interesting for first and second graders. Let me just relate one incidient. M was at his usual mainic self today. I sent him to Vicki once, he came back in doing his little catwalk. Fast forward to lunch. First of all the boys won't get quiet when it's time for prayer, so I send ahead the girls and one boy who were quiet. M of course is in the group who were being noisy. I lecture them, then let them go. I'm already feeling like this field trip was a bad idea, and why didn't I just call in sick. Then, I somehow end up sitting across from M. I notice that he's about to get up from the table to exchange his chips. The rule in my class at least is that once you've picked your chips, dessert, or drink, that's it. Otherwise it's a constant stream of kids going back and forth to make sure they have the same such and such as another child. So anyway, I tell him to sit down - that he can't exchange his chips. He then rather snottily informs me that he'd already exchanged his dessert. ARGHH! I tell him, that may be, but you'll have to stick with those chips. So he says that he won't eat them. I say, fine, you don't have to. Then he says, "i'll just crunch them up." I tell him fine, they're your chips. Then he says he's going to pop the bag. I say, fine, if you want to clean up the whole table. So then he looks me directly in the eye, and puts his bag of chips on his seat. I tell him to stop. He then plops down on top of the bag, and of course a LOUD popping sound emits.

Admittedly, at that point, I over reacted. I threw down my corn dog that I was about to eat, and said "that's it!" Then asked another adult who was there to keep an eye on my class, and took M to find Vicki. I was quite honestly livid. After we talked and she talked to M, I went back to the table . . . . and found out that the bag had not even opened!!! I was more than a bit embarrased.

After school today I talked some more to Vicki. She thinks that M just craves attention, and that he'll get it from me any way he can. That he loves me very much, and knows that I love him, and that I am the one stable thing in his life. His mom is a single mom and works crazy hours for SBC as a phone repair tech - she's doing the best she can for him. Vicki told me that she thinks that I am getting so tired of dealing with him, that things I could have let go easily at the beginning of the year are becoming much bigger - mountain out of a molehill, so to speak. I know what she's saying is true. My patience/tolerance level right now is extremely low, not just with M, but with all the kids. I DO try my darndest to "catch him being good" as much as possible - and give him attention at times hes not misbehaving - but the times he's NOT misbehaving are so far and few between, it feels like a losing battle.

I don't know what I can do to change the situation at this point. I am so physically, mentally, and emotionally drained. I get to bed at a decent hour, but it doesn't really do much good because I'm either kept awake for hours and hours by the mental movie in my mind, the stupid neighborhood dogs that have a metal bowl or something that gets kicked around at all hours of the day and night, some neighbor having a loud thumping music party, OR I get to sleep, but then somehow wake up right around 4 or 5 am and can't go back to sleep. Or, sometimes BOTH parts happen on the same night, and I'm not sure if I ever REALLY got to sleep in the first place.

I really really need a few mental health days, but theres just no way I can ask for them with the situation we have on subs (in other words -NONE). The only thing I can do is chant the mantra - 26 days, 26 days, there IS a light at the end of the tunnel.

Oh, something else. This morning I got an email from my most recent ex-bf. The same one who sent me the strange little one liner on Saturday. He told me that he has decided to go back to school and finish his Bus Ad degree. THEN he asked me why he hadn't heard from me in awhile - if I was wanting to cut off communication. I'm wondering if somehow he didn't get my last email that I sent during Spring Break. I'm not really quite sure what to think. This email was much more normal for him. I haven't quite decided what to do yet.

The other guy who's been writing me for about a week - well I asked him to tell me more about his divorce. He told me that it is final, but in Oklahoma there is a waiting period, and his lawyer told him that it would be good for him to start another relationship during that time. Hmmm. ... still not too sure what to think about this. He says that his ex-wife left him without telling him, and that his lawyer tried to get her to state why she left for many many months, but she refused, and finally wrote him a letter asking him for no more contact. I really, really, don't know what to think.

Comfort Food spending:
Taco Bell: $5.80 (no more corn on the cob there -wah!)
Wal-greens: $2.80 (choclate peanuts, soda, ice cream)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

27 days to go! + a ? for the ladies

April 14th, 2005 at 02:08 am

So-so day at school today. My kids were in charge of the song service for Chapel today and did a great job as usual. I make them do everything by themself - I help them get organized before we go, but once they're up there, they're on their own. Smile I also have always expected my kids to clean the lunch area (where we sit). The pre-k/K teacher's are always doing all the clean up for their area themself. Today though I noticed that one of the K students was "helping" to wipe down the table. I asked Tammy about it, and she told me that J liked to help out like that. Smile That's something I refuse to do - I refuse to clean up after my students in the classroom, and I refuse to clean up after them in the lunchroom. I really hope that whomever takes my job next year will carry on with having the kids do the cleaning of the table area.

I think my 2nd graders are really starting to get the hang of multiplication. Today I gave them a bunch of verbal word problems where they had to use multiplication, and they all were able to figure out what to do! Smile For Science today I filled up one of my dishpans (which usually holds a bunch of books) with soil. Then I had all the kids gather around the kidney table and gave them all a straw. They each got to blow on the soil with their straw and see the effects of "wind" on the earth. Then I also had my spray bottle and I demonstrated what happened when there was a light misting of rain, and then what happens when there's a heavy downpour. They each then got to have a turn with the spray bottle. THIS is the kind of stuff I like doing. They'll remember this much longer than any stupid worksheet (though I DID have them do a worksheet where it showed different before/after pictures and they had to write what they thought had caused the change to take place).

I don't know if this is the right place to ask or not, but I do have a bit of a relationshipesque question. There's this guy who's been writing to me for about a week now - so far every day. He's 10 years older than me, has a teaching degree, but owns/runs a Janitorial company. On his profile it says he's divorced. Well, my one ex-bf who I stay in contact with via IM was also a divorcee', but I didn't find out until nearly three months into our relationship just exactly when his divorce had been finalized (two months before I met him.) If I would've known, I think I would have taken the relationship a LOT slower. So, anyway, recalling that experience, in my last email I asked this person about his divorce. He replied that his wife of 14 years had abandoned him (didn't say when) when a relative of hers had gotten sick and died and her relatives told her to either stay with them or she'd be cut off from the family. He wasn't terribly clear on whether or not the divorce was finalized or not (for reasons of abandoment.) I'm just not really sure where to go with this. In his emails he seems like a good person, and down to earth, but he isn't very chatty about himself. After my last two relationships, I'm feeling really gun shy, and am just not sure what to really thing about this. He does fit my criteria as far as not smoking, not drinking, same faith, and even is a vegetarian (shockers!). I'm also not sure if he's a bit more on the conservative side (as far as our faith goes) than I am.

No Lost tonight (well, a rerun, that doesn't count) so I've spent most of my evening on the net. Tomorrow is our field trip. I really hope it goes well and the kids aren't bored. I've never been to this place, and neither any of the other lower grades teachers, which is a bit scary.

No spending today. Yay! I did receive a package from a home business op I inquired about. I've gotta say that the person is persistant and sure has all the sales tactics down - of course I learned all of them myself when I was in training for my "business" so I just listen with a smirk on my face. I seriously doubt this will be something I try, but who knows, maybe it will be.

Oh! I had a great time at the Coupon Club last night. Scored a lot of great coupons, along with a couple more Morningstar! Also as I was looking through one of the inserts, I was on a page with a coupon for the resturant "Medevil Times" (sp?) and one of the ladies sitting near me told me that I should aplly for a job there - because of my hair (nearly waist length). LOL! It certainly was a novel idea. Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

28 days

April 12th, 2005 at 11:47 pm

Not a great day. Blah blah blah blah. I won't bore you with the details. Most of it had to do with M and with the other boys. Some of it also had to do with our "librarian" AGAIN canceling library with no notice (actually just didn't show up today).

I ordered a "coupon" book where you can select exactly what coupons you want. It was $5 for $1000 worth of coupons. You can order them online. I'm going to try it out tomorrow, since tonight is my Coupon Club meeting and I have to get going to make it there in time.

I am SO ready for this year to be over!!!!!!

Spending Log:
$0.00 (so far, though I might get a DQ on the way back from the CC meeting.)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

29 days -- Ooops, turned out much longer than plan

April 12th, 2005 at 03:57 am

Today was . . . okay - at least until Social Studies which is about 1:30 p.m. when 4 of my 6 boys decided that it would be a GREAT time to be totally rude and disrespectful - not just to me, but to the students who were trying to read the lesson. I ended up sending M to the office, but of course Vicki wasn't there, she'd left early again. So, I sent him into the 3rd grade teacher's room, and another little boy (pastor's kid) into the 4th grade room. The other two boys settled down *somewhat* after I did that. We did Science today out on the playground in the rocks. I divided the kids up into four groups, and the rocky area into four areas, then told them to "change" the look of their area - kind of like erosion. They really seemed to enjoy it, and later when we were back in the classroom and they were writing/drawing about it, most of them seemed to have gotten the point.

Vicki was back after school and I talked to her about how frustrated I am with M and the other boys. She and I made up a "Hall Pass" where I can basically just circle the main behavior, write the kids name, the date/time, and send it with the kid to the office. It'll be much better than trying to find a scrap piece of paper and writing out a whole note.

I decided that I'll be taking them on a field trip this Thursday to the Museum of Natural History. It's only $3.50 admission so it's not too expensive, and parts of it will sort of go along with our Science unit. I must be nuts taking them on a field trip with them behaving like they've been, but I'd much rather do that than face two or more hours of not knowing what to do with them - I really don't like showing kids movies during school to just "fill" time. And besides, this group for some reason has an aversion to Veggie Tales, which has been a mainstay emergency video since I started teaching and fell in love with them. Smile

I read today that Albertson's is going to be doing the double dollar (double coupons up to $1.00/ triple coupons up to $.75) again in two weeks. My coupon club meeting is tomorrow night, so I hope to get stocked up on some more coupons, cause I just about used up everything I had. I also heard that they might (in the Dallas/Ft Worth area anyway) start doubling/tripling coupons on a daily basis - but more like on a level that Kroger's does (triple to $.39/ double to $.50). Either way that would just be way too awesome.

By the way, how I get some of my deals, is mainly through keeping my ear to a number of coupon discussion boards - namely DFW Couponers (yahoo) and the Terri's List (part of the grocerygame.com website but is a FREE forum). I also do subscribe to the Kroger's list. Most months I have ended up saving five or six times (sometimes a LOT more) than the cost of the double newspaper($2/wk) and my Kroger's subscription ($1.25/wk). Before I buy a paper though, I do check at taylortowncoupons.com to make sure there are enough coupons that week to make it worth my while.

I'm sorry about my ranting yesterday. I know that I do have something to offer. Yes, I was looking into the possibility of becoming a REALTOR but after a lot of consideration and prayer, decided not to pursue that. I'm really pretty shy/timid in front of groups of people that are my age or older. Which is funny, because I have NO problem whatsoever when I'm in front of my students or even in front of kids up to about 6th grade or so. I also am not that much of a talker, unless I'm talking with someone i'm VERY comfortable with, and/or it's something I have very strong feelings about. (Just ask my ex-bf. I think that might have been something that drove him crazy - the fact that I was content to sit there next to him in the car for hours on end, and not really SAY anything. I just hate saying something JUST to say something, ya know what I mean?)

Anyway, I'm not really sure why I went into all that. I guess its just that when most employers look at my education and my work experience, they're going to be thinking that I'm going to be expecting the big bucks. When the fact of the matter is that I really trully JUST want a job that will net me about $1600 a month - though benes would be nice (which would give me enough to live on fairly comfortably, and still put money in savings). I also REALLY want a job that I can truly LEAVE at the work place, or at least within the work hours. The one ex-bf whom I stay in contact with via IM told me so many times that I should just "leave it at work". That, for me at least, is and was IMPOSSIBLE with teaching.

As an example: I sent in an online application for a customer service position with Cingualr Wireless. It unfortunately did not have any place where you could add a cover letter. So I'm just imagining whoever reads those looking at it and wondering why a degreed person is wanting to do CS (about 1/2 my current income).

Six years ago I quit my teaching job at a public school 5th grade in February (loooonnnggg story). Then I got head over heels involved with what turned out to be a major business scam. By the beginning of July I had maxed out every credit card I owned, refinanced my car loan, taken out a personal loan (for money to open a branch office of this "business") and had not one red cent to my name. I had to ask my parents for gas/food money. I had just moved into an apartment in May and signed a 6 month lease. I desperately wanted to stick my lease out. I went to EVERY employment agency in the Waco area (where I'd moved to start my branch office). I accepted EVERY interview and EVERY assignment.

One place I worked at as a file clerk for three days, then they called me back again for two days and asked me for my resume. But I never heard from them again. Place after place after place wouldn't give me a second look because of my degree. I was desperate for ANY job so I could afford my own food and pay my creditors. They all just assumed that as soon as I had something better offered that I would up and leave.

My VERY LAST resort was when I called the person who was at the time the head superintendant (and a former teacher of mine in college) and told him I'd be willing to take a teaching job if they had an opening. Within a week I was hired to teach first grade in the "Valley". It WASN'T what I wanted, but at that point I had absolutely no other choice because no one else would even give me a chance. By that time though, I was SO far behind on ALL my bills, that it would've taken me winning the lottery or something to have even begun to catch up. I actually lived with the Kindergarten teacher and her husband for the first TWO weeks of school until I had my first paycheck and found a place that allowed cats.

I had to end up filing bankruptcy because just the MININUM payments on ONE of my credit cards, was more than 1/4 of my salary.

The really hard thing about all this, is that I now feel like I really have a good handle on money and on how to manage my finances, and that I KNOW the pitfalls out there and can relate to people. BUT because of the BK on my record, I'll never be able to work in the financial industry -- and there have been some really interesting jobs which I think would have been right up my alley. There actually WAS one job that I came SO close to getting before the "Valley" job - but I think what ruined it for me was my credit.

I really wish that I could show potential employers my credit score/record BEFORE that whole fiasco - I think I was pretty darn close to the high 700's. THAT would be a much truer picture of who I am than what my credit report looks like now. Ugh!
I just have to (im)patiently wait for the next 6 years to pass, and that bk to be off my record(4 years down, 6 to go).

The only really good thing that came out of all of that was that I learned some major life lessons in one of the hardest ways possible. One of them being to not hold on stubbornly to something JUST because you've already put a ton of time, money and effort into it, or even if you TRULY believe in the product - ESPECIALLY when everyone around you who is older and wiser is telling you that you're in over your head. Listen to your elders -sometimes they really DO know what they're talking about.

Ok, It's way past my bedtime. Sorry if I bored you to tears. Most of this was actually in my very first post which was lost in cyberspace way back in January. Smile

Spending Log:
Wal-Mart: $3.00 (2 - boxes of Sunbelt Granola Bars - Yummy!)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

My weekend

April 11th, 2005 at 02:40 am

Friday:
School went okay. Kids did great during Chapel. M even fell asleep and I had to carry him back to the room. LOL! Found out the movie the kids had voted for was a PG (Parent Trap) and so were the other two movie choices (Shrek and Shark Tale). 4th grade teacher had Chicken Run, so we watched that instead. Found out that the music teacher isn't going to be here on Thursday - ARGHHH!!!! Am going to try to come up with a field trip for that day. I'd love it if I could just take off a day whenever I felt like it. Ugh!!

After school dad and I went to Albertson's and took advantadge of the double dollar days. I got $175 worth of groceries for $63.11 !! Woo Hoo! Then we took my five boxes of books/video's to Half-Price Books. They gave me $42 for them. Smile

Friday night I went to the Bible Study group. I hadn't gone in a long time. It was good to get together with adults again, as well as get some good singing time in. Smile

Saturday:
Kids sang for church service. They did pretty well even with a few mishaps. As soon as their part was done, I went home. There weren't any seats left even if I had wanted to stay. I slept most of the day away. Guess I was tired. Of course that made it nearly impossible for me to sleep later. Oh well.
Went to Albertsons and got the Sunday paper (early edition) and then cut out more coupons and planned my Sunday attack. Smile

Oh, almost forgot. I got a strange one sentence email from my ex-bf with a photo of his cats. Not quite sure what to make of it, or if he's expecting a response. I think this just may be enough to make me say to him to not contact me anymore.

Sunday:
Today was supposed to be Track and Field day. I arrived at the school just after 9am and found most of the other teachers there. None of us were really wanting to do the whole thing. So, when Raymond called and said that it was sprinkling at the park where the event was to be held, and that he was canceling the event, none of us were too unhappy.

Since I didn't have to do the Track and Field thing, I went ahead and went to Albertson's. This time I got ~$75 worth of groceries for ~$12.00. The person who checked me out wasn't a very happy person, but the manager was very friendly and helpful.

I'm not sure exactly what I did all day. I didn't do lesson plans again. I pretty much wasted this entire day. I don't know why I do this to myself. I did sign in at the dating site I hadn't visited in over two months, and somehow I had been given a gift subscription. So I emailed a couple interesting people. One of them responded all ready. I'm still not sure if I should even try to start anything with anyone with the topsy turvy my life is in right now. Wish I knew how I got that gift subscription.

30 school days to go. 6 weeks. I still have no idea what I'm going to do. I have been checking into a few home based businesses, but I'm really leary of them since most of them are scams. What do I really have to offer anyone, I'm so burnt out and mixed up, and over emotional, and feeling so out of control of my life, my eating, my non-existant exercise. I don't know if quitting teaching is being self-destructive or pro-active. I wonder how much better my life will really be after May 23 (the last day of school) or after my last paycheck -June 30. What I find is so difficult is that even though the rug was pulled out from under me as far as teaching goes, I still haven't been able to fully let it go. I still itch to sign up for teacher sites like a-zreading which has awesome leveled books that can be downloaded and copied for all the kids to have their own copy. But I refuse to spend any money that I don't absolutely have to spend on my kids/teaching. I really have no idea what else I even really WANT to do. My whole life (since I was in first grade) was geared towards being a teacher. And I never really even considered what else was out there. I'm scared I'm making a mistake that I'll regret later, but then again, the thought of having to deal with teaching kids the way I've had to teach this year, makes me sick to my stomach.

Oh, another thing. My employer's care so much about me that they don't even know how long I've actually worked for them. HAH! I got a letter from my head superintendant. She blathered on about how much they appreciate the time and effort I've given to the conference and that she wishes me luck wherever I go. She then says something about my TWO years of service. Ummm, lady, did you check with your secretary on that number???? I've been in Richardson for the last THREE years, and before that I worked in McA for TWO years, so that would be, let me see if I can do the math here . .. FIVE YEARS!!!!! Oh yeah, I really believe that you give a flying rip about me or my service. WHATEVER!!! Your'e just happy to finally be rid of everyone with my last name from the payroll.

Sorry about the above. That letter just made me a little bit mad. My contract should have tipped me off before that they're records are messed up - they jipped me of 1 year of experience. I didn't fuss about it, because I was worried that I wouldn't get the pay raise if they gave me my full 8 years on the pay scale (from year 7 - 12 there are no pay raises except for cost of living raises).

K, I better get my shower and get to bed cause I'll have to get up early to do lessons for the week. Be somewhat prepared.

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

31 days to go!

April 8th, 2005 at 01:16 am

The Week of Prayer meeting this morning was just HORRIBLE!!! The speaker was fine, and the music was fine. But, my kids just were HORRIBLE! Just yesterday I was sitting on the bench at recess talking to Tammy (the K teacher) telling her how proud I was of how my kids always behaved at Chapel. Then . . . today . . . they were just HORRIBLE! M wasn't even the worst of it. There were only 3 of the 12 whom didn't misbehave at some point. At one point I was almost ready to just have the whole kit and kaboodle of them walk out of there in the middle of the program. Would've embarrased them to all get out, and me too, but it would've gotten the point across. They got the point though I think when we got back to the room. I was honestly so upset with them I was at the verge of tears! I told them to go directly to their seats and to not say a word. I then told them just how dissapointed I felt, and how sick at heart I felt at how rude and unmannerly they had behaved. I told them about my having just talked to Tammy yesterday about how proud I was of them, and that I guess I had just stuck my foot in my mouth.
I also told them that they better make sure that they DON"T repeat their behavior tomorrow. I seriously thought about telling them that the party was a reward for good behavior, and their behavior during Chapel sure didn't qualify for that!!!

I'd been planning on having the kids make thank you cards for the Pastor, but I was so upset by their behavior that I totally forgot. Through lunchtime, their behavior was much better. Lunch recess I got after them big time for their behavior in line. The rest of the afternoon they were of course in either Chimes or Choir. I HOPE they behave better tomorrow for chapel. I Might just cancel their party on them, though I'm not really sure that is the best thing to do, especially for the three who DID behave.

After school we had our Staff Meeting (which is really supposed to be on Wednesday, but anywhoo). It was supposed to be "short" but of course ended up being just as long as any other meeting. We were talking about Track and Field Day. Could everyone please pray for rain, and lots of it, from about 7:30 a.m. till maybe 10 am on Sunday so it'll be canceled???? I really am not looking forward to it.

Didn't spend anything today. One of my kids brought the movie we're going to watch tomorrow, and several of the students have all ready said their bringing treats - so I'm not going to add any.

CSI is a repeat tonight, and I'll have to check on ER. Maybe I'll do some reading or something. Last night I got all the books I'm going to sell at Half-Price boxed up. Dad and I will probably take them there tomorrow to sell.

I am SOOOOOO TIRED of this school year. Sometimes it's all I can do to just tell Vicki that I QUIT and she can figure out what to do with the kids. Won't do that though, no matter how much I yearn to. 31 days.

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

32 days to go

April 7th, 2005 at 01:22 am

I'm beginning to sound like a broken record. Whining and complaining about my day at work. Today was extra fun. The Week of Prayer speaker decided that he was going to let all the kids have some of the watermelon (part of his talk) after the meeting was over. So, all 100+ Pre-K - 12th grade students crowded into our all-purpose room to eat a slice of watermelon. M of course had to show off by pretending to eat like a pig. By the time we were out of there, there was about 20 minutes left of reading, which isn't much time to get anything done. So I had us work through morning recess, and actually had an extra long reading session, just no recess or writing. One highlight today was that my second graders are really seeming to grasp the concept of mulitiplication. They also seem pretty happy to be doing it. Wink

After school I came home to find my dad here. He'd brought back the family freezer from the storage place and put it under my stairwell. It fits perfectly! I'm already having visions of filling it with good deals and pre-cooked meals. Wink We went to the Post Office to pick up the book from Amazon, and then he treated me to supper at Schlotsky's. Mmmm! Smile

Lost was pretty good tonight. Although the previews for next week's two-hour season ender really made me go, WHAT???? After next week, I'll now have nothing to watch on either Tuesday or Wednesday nights (until next September.)

I'm going to try to go to bed early tonight. I stayed up way too late finishing the 3rd book in the Traveling Pants series. It apparentally is going to be made into a movie, and will be coming out this summer. That would be really cool.
Tomorrow is the musical afternoon, so I'll basically just have to cover the morning with all the kids, then be essentially free of them in the afternoon. Yay!

Another no spend day today. Yay! Friday will definately be a spending day, but I don't see any reason for tomorrow to be one.

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

33 days to go!

April 6th, 2005 at 01:12 am

Oy vey! Is it going to get any better this week, or is it going to just keep steadily declining each day till I find I have lost my mind? M was here from the start, and lets just say that he didn't put me in a great mood to start our Week of Prayer meeting. He didn't get much better the rest of the day, though there were a FEW glimmers of good behavior. The rest of the kids too were just nutty. Part of it was that it was K's birthday today and he was extra wound up. Today also was the first Tuesday without Chimes. I thought I was going to at least have Library today and some sort of a break, but NO, her daughter was sick today so Library was canceled. Ugh! I ended up doing a part "study hall/silent reading" time and "center time" during the normal Chimes time (as well as giving them extra PE time). They actually did pretty well with that. Of course I told them during Study Hall/SSR that their behavior would determine whether or not they participated in Centers or not.

My second graders seem to be really enthused about the book project. 3 of them already have their book read, along with having taken the required notes for it. One of them already is planning her project (a diorama). The other two are nearly finished with their books/notes. It's going a lot faster than I had anticipated. Smile I just can't say how proud I am of how well they (2nd graders) are able to work on their own. It makes my life a lot easier.

After school I stayed and graded papers for a bit over an hour, and actually caught up on three days worth of papers. Then I went home to get my Tide coupon (and found one for Downy too). I'd called my mom and asked her if she wanted me to pick up some more Tide for her, and she had said that she did. She also said that she could use some more fabric softner, and prefered Downy. I'd told her that I hadn't seen a cpn for Downy, but would look. Hee. Anyway, after getting the coupons, I went to Kroger's and picked up those items, plus a large cannister of Benefiber (had $2 cpn for) and a new hair barette (I have almost waist length hair and my barettes/clips are always breaking.) This time I DID NOT pick up any Easter candy (of course they still have it only 50% off, which isn't that great of a deal.) Smile

There is absolutely nothing on TV that I want to watch tonight (maybe the Amazing Race) so I'm going to relax with my third book in the Traveling Pants series which I started last night (and will probably finish tonight.)

I woke up at 4:43 this morning (didn't get to sleep till after midnight). I really wish I knew why - no loud noises this time, and was eventually able to go back to sleep for a little bit. I am so tired!

Spending Log:
Kroger's: $28.31 (Saved $9.38 with cpns/sales)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

34 days to go!

April 5th, 2005 at 01:54 am

Yet another horrible, terrible, no-good day. (Thanks, Alexander.) The first two hours of my day actually were almost blissful. I arrived to find that M was not there yet. This week is Week of Prayer, and he still hadn't arrived by the end of the morning WOP meeting. I took my second graders to the computer lab to go over with them their new Reading schedule (story summaries and a major book project) and when I got back to the room he still hadn't arrived. Kids went out to recess and came back inside, and started writing, and he still hadn't arrived. THEN just a few minutes before lunch, guess who arrives? Apparentally either he or his mom overslept this morning. I knew it was too good to be true.

Lets just say he more than made up for his absence in the morning. UGH! And then during social studies about 6 or 7 of my kids just could NOT settle down. THEN after I ran them ragged during PE, I STILL had two little boys who just could not keep their mouths shut (not M this time!) and I had to send them to two different teachers rooms to do busywork, while the rest of the class got to go outside and "do" Science (studying the Crust - picked up stuff off the ground and id'd whether it was part of the crust or not). I hated not having them included in the project, but they JUST were NOT listening, and taking pennies wasn't having any effect on them. ARGHHH!!!

Before school even started though, I had a rough start to my morning. Yesterday I was VERY lazy and didn't go anywhere, and didn't DO anything at all productive other than to read the first two books in the "Traveling Pants" series by Ann? Brashares. (Totally AWESOME books - I can't sing their praises enough!!!!!) So, I didn't get my lesson plans done. That meant I needed to go in to school extra early this morning. I set my alarm for 6:10 a.m. (and yes, I did remember to change the time.) But, right around 4:30 I was literally JOLTED awake by my smoke alarm doing the low battery beep. ARGHHH!!!! Needless to say I didn't get much sleep after that. UGH!

In the mail today I got a postcard saying that Albertson's is having it's AWESOME coupon sale this coming weekend! I was so excited when I saw it that I actually said (loudly) WHEEEE!!! You'll have to realize that I live in an apartment complex, and the mailboxes are surrounded by said apartments. Blush Anyway, my dad told me that he'll measure the freezer he has in storage ad see if it'll fit under my stairway. If it can, then I'll be able to stock up on the Green Giant boxed veggies (have $.60 coupons for 3) along with other frozen foods, as well as maybe do some make ahead stuff. My fridge and freezer right now are literally stuffed. My mom wanted to send lasagna home with me from the dinner party, but I truthfully told her that I didn't have any room! Ach! To pass up free food. Frown

Before my dad left tonight he changed my smoke alarm battery for me (I had the battery all ready.) Isn't he a sweetie? Smile

Yesterday I didn't spend anything, but it wasn't because I didn't want to. I decided early on in the day that I just plain did NOT want to go in a do lesson plans. SO, I thought I'd go out to IHOP and then take in Miss Congeniality 2 - you know, blow $20. I REALLY REALLY REALLY wanted to do this. Up until the last possible moment to both have time for IHOP and take in a matinee showing, I was debating this. But then my frugal side won out, and I ended up warming up the rest of the spaghetti from last Sunday, and a couple of cutlets (vege) and then read my two "Traveling Pants" books. That took me right up through 10 pm (of course I was watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition and then Desperate Housewives as well).

Today, I did stop by Albies and get some bananas and other stuff (okay, okay, Easter Candy! Alright already!)

Spending Log:
Albertsons: $2.39

Keeping It Frugal in Texas (Off to watch SuperNanny and start the 3rd "Traveling Pants" book.)

Laura

The Dinner Party

April 3rd, 2005 at 03:50 am

Today I attended a dinner party that my mom had at her house to introduce her new "honey". What do I think of him? Well, he seemed pretty attentive and on the ball. He also showed that he was very willing to do kitchen work. Honestly, he seemed to be a fair replica of my dad in that area. I hate to say it, but I almost actually liked him. Apparentally they're talking about September 17 now (the day before my mom's birthday) as the wedding date.

It was nice to see the Charles and Annette, Carol, Heather and Joel and their 8 month old baby Alex, and Deb and Bryan. Alex is just adorable. Heather told me that she sometimes gets very lonely at night when Joel is at work. She was pretty excited to hear that I might be moving to Burleson (where they live) or to Fort Worth.

After all the guests left and we got the kitchen cleaned up, mom, Dave, and I played a game of Scrabble. I won by 10 points. Smile
Softy is a real word right? Smile Smile

My mom gave me an early birthday gift (Dec 15!) today. It's this lamp made out of stained glass that she got at an antique store. I do like it, but not for $50 (she forgot to take the price tag off). I also really wonder how "antique" it is. But, it will go with my two kerosene lamps I got for my b-day a couple years ago. I really do like these things, but it's frustrating for two reasons: 1) I'm really, really, really trying to downsize on 'stuff" and 2) I hate mom spending money that she really doesn't have. I've told her many times that I would be very happy with just a birthday card, and if she had to, one book (or preferably a gift card to a bookstore). She just isn't capable of doing anything small. At Christmas she'd given me a number of things, and still wanted to give me $50 cash, but she didn't have it right then. It took a LOT of convincing on my part for her to NOT give it to me. I told her that it would be a much better gift to me having me know that she has that $50 to pay a bill with, than for me to have $50 which I'd more than likely just put in savings.

Oh no! I just thought of something. If she's getting remarried, then I'm probably going to be a bridesmaid or moh. Hopefully she'll just have a really small quiet wedding in casual dress. Hah! I just thought of something else. I still have one set left of Mary Hunt's book "Debt Proof Your Marriage". I got four sets of them when she was having a really good sale, for wedding presents. I can just see my mom sitting down and reading it. Guess I know what I'll be giving them for a wedding present. Hee!

Well, I would like to watch a movie or maybe read a book before going to bed. I can actually sleep in tomorrow since the Spring Fling is canceled, and I don't need to do laundry. I think I will go in to the school for two hours max to do lesson plans, but the rest of the day is mine to be lazy in! Yay! Ok, ok, I really should probably get those books boxed up and take them over to Half-Price books and "make" some money, as well as get my upstairs looking more organized again. Having tall stacks of books on every flat surface in the room really doesn't lend to a very neat or orderly appearance. Smile Smile

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

Looking back on March/Looking forward to April

April 2nd, 2005 at 04:29 am

Like I was afraid of, this was a VERY spendy kind of month. I didn't manage to not call Pizza Hut at all, but did only call once, which was better than February, so that's improvement. I really, really, really, sliped up on keeping a daily tally of my spending, and logging it on my Excell spreadsheet. I DID manage to finally do my Chicometric's tape -albeit, one time. Wink I DID get my home book collection sorted. BUT still need to put the culled books into boxes and take to Half-Price bookstore and see what money I can get for them.


April:
Well, I really don't think this will be a very spendy month for me. I'm really hoping to be able to tighten the money hatches so to speak, and get serious with setting money aside in savings. In March, I dipped into my "extra" checking account funds more than once when my "Gas/Grocery" money was gone. My goal is to NOT do that again. Also, I really, really, really, need to cut it with buying the junkfood. I'm embarrased to think about how much money I spent on junkfood, and also how much I consumed. If I'm going to get myself healthy, and let the Synthroid have a chance to do it's work, I need to CHANGE my eating habits. This will also help in the pocketbook. Also, if I do end up going to Cancun at the end of May, it would be nice to be down 15 pounds or so.
Also, I think I really need to change how I'm looking at my job situation. I was reading through some of my entries this past month, and so much of it is WHINING. I know how much I love whining when my students do that to me. NOT!

I need to remember my favorite saying, "Smile and the world smiles with you. Cry and the world cry's with you." I'd much rather the world smile than cry, so I just need to look at the brighter side of life more.

K, I better head off to la la land.

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura

35 days!!!

April 2nd, 2005 at 03:42 am

ETA: I just noticed that someone rated my journal. Hee hee! Thanks to whomever did that. Smile Picked up my day a bit. Smile

Today was so-so. There were good parts to it, and then stretches of time where I wanted to pull my hair out and scream. It started out just loverly with our principal getting on the kids' cases's for what I consider a non-issue, or at least not a hill to die on -- these colored arm bands/wristbands some of them have been wearing. Apparentally some parents feel these are jewlery, and our handbook does state "no jewlery". I was telling my dad about this today, and he thought it wasn't the best approach to take for it either. Personally, I don't really "see" what one of my kids has on (in violation of handbook) unless it's pointed out specifically to me by someone else. I guess I look at each kid as a whole person, and not whether they're wearing the "right" color uniform clothing, or on causal days if they're wearing sleeveless shirts, or if heaven help us, they would dare to wear nailpolish (of course, I DO think 6, and 7 year olds are too young to be wearing makeup/nailpolish - but just my humble opinon). Just another reason I'll be so happy to away from teaching and away from being under this system. I wonder if they'll bar me from campus if I get my ears pierced and wear those cool dangly hoop earrings after the school year is over? Hee! :evil smile:

The kids voted to have a party. Actually, one of them was absent today, and the vote was 6-6 for a party/fieldtrip. I cast the deciding vote. Smile We're going to watch "Parent Trap 2". They gave me a whole list of possible movies, the other two that remained after the initial voting were "Shrek 2" and "Incredibles". I was pretty surprised that an older movie was the one that won. Our party will be on Friday after lunch.

I got an email from this Christian singles group I joined about 18 months ago or so. They apparentally are having this event in Cancun, Mexico the last weekend of May (26 - 29). I was going to call and find out if the price included airfare, and also exact leaving and getting back times, but got waylaid by my dad when I got home. If the price includes airfare, AND I can figure out how I could be virtually moved out of my apartment and classroom by the 26th, then I think I just might do this. I really don't see myself as having too much in common with most of the other singles in this group. I've been to two events since I joined, and both of them it seemed like most of the people there were drinking. Most of the events that have been advertised feature "drink specials" as a "come on" I guess. Not my cup of tea. But I figure at this type of thing, I'd be able to find enough things to do to keep me busy, and be worth the money (and time away from everything - Calgon, take me away!) And who knows, maybe I'll actually meet the man in the haystack (aka as the needle) who actually doesn't smoke or drink, AND doesn't mind that I'm overweight and clumsy and don't have a job lined up.

Dad called me right at 3:30 as I was about to blow my nose (thanks allergies!). I was just in the process of getting my room picked up for the weekend. (AKA hiding anything I don't want the Sabbath School people or Sunday church people to use and abuse!) He wanted me to get home as soon as I could so we could go out to eat. It ended up that when I got home my mom called, so it was more like about 45 minutes before we hit the road to eat.

We ate at Jason's Deli, and both got the salad bar. I'm actually not that big of a salad eater, even though I'm a vegetarian, but . . . at Jason's Deli they have this utterly scrumptious chocolate mouse pudding. Smile And they actually do have a pretty good selection for their salad bar too. Smile

During my phone call with mom, she asked me again if I would come to her dinner party tomorrow to meet her not-fiance Dave. At first I told her I would think about it, but then I got to thinking that I would like to see Heather and Joel and their baby (they're the people who got married on the cruise my family went on a year ago Christmas.) So, I finally told her I would go. I also asked her if there was anything she'd like me to bring from my stockpile. So, I'm bringing: peanut butter, pasta sauce, cream of mushroom soup, toilet paper, paper towels, Brawny Napkins, and salad dressing. All of which I paid mostly only tax for, and still have plenty for me. I love coupons!

Oh! I almsot forgot! Today was April Fools day of course. My kids were "fooling" me all day long (at least I let them think they were fooling me! LOL) Well, I got them good at lunch! The kids were pretty much seperated boys on one side of the table, and girls on the other side. I was sitting with the boys. About halfway through lunch, I stopped eating, and looked at the boys. "Oh my! I forgot to tell you guys! We're going to have to go right into Math class today and not have lunch recess or afternoon recess, because our Math project is going to take SO LONG!" You should have seen the looks on their faces - they were TOTALLY buying it, hook, line, and sinker! Of course I'm not a very good liar/bluffer, and I started smiling and laughing and they figured out I was fooling them. They were pretty impressed. Smile I then went over to the girls side and did pretty much the same thing. One of my little girls looked up at me with HUGE eyes and said, "Miss N, y-y-your'e April fooling us, right???" It was just too hilarious. I even had my aide scratching her head. HEE!!

Happy April all!

Spending Log:
Car Wash (11th/12th grade fundraiser - but car needed it badly) : $10.00
Albertsons: $11.10 (various groceries, $.25 frozen cookie dough!)

Keeping It Frugal in Texas,
Laura