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Archive for September, 2011

Nice Friday - the Duck company

October 1st, 2011 at 02:33 am

Today was teacher in-service. We got to go into work an hour late. Big Grin

I'm now up to the beginning of season 4 of Ally McBeal with yummy Robert Downey Jr. Big Grin Too bad he doesn't last very long on that season ... he could have probably lasted out the show (and maybe have saved it from its downward spiral in Season 5) if he himself hadn't taken a downward spiral. I'm just glad he was able to pick himself up and rejuvenate his career ... otherwise Iron Man 1 and 2 wouldn't have been half as good (with some other person playing the part.)

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I spent a lot of money at the grocery store today. I'm not sure exactly what was up with my thinking ... bought quite a few prepared meals, etc. I also bought a couple different cat sprays (the kind to keep cats from scratching things, the kind to attract cats to certain areas you DO want them to scratch, and a wet/dry cat shampoo) and a cat toy (it was $10 and so far seems to be a dud ... wonder if I can take it back??)

Any ideas on how to keep Kari out of my trashcan? I moved it away from anything jumpable, then she figured out that she could knock it over. So then I put it in the laundry room with the door closed ... and she figured out how to get under the door. Then I stuffed the door with a mat, and she figured out how to pull the mat out!! I'm out of ideas quite frankly. Frown

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Buddy (moms dog) apparently bit another person last week. My mom was taking him out to do his business, and a neighbor lady was behind the garage door. It drew blood. Frown She asked to see his shot records. Thank the Good Lord mom had gotten it together (finally!!!) and had him for his shots the week before. Oh yeah, he of course wasn't on a leash. This might get her to put him on a leash for a week or two, then she'll get too annoyed at the hassle ... or over confident in her "control" of him ... Ugh!!!!!

During this same phone call where she told me about this, she also essentially asked me to tell her why she shouldn't move in with this guy (the guy who's broken up with her 4 times in the last 7 months ...). I wasted my breath, all the while she was telling me what good advice/wisdom I had. The move in day was Thursday - haven't heard from her, so more than likely my words went in one ear and out the other. So I'll get to spend Thanksgiving at this guys house. Ergh!

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The same woman who gave me Kari told me yesterday that she is pregnant! She's 33, so not too much younger than me -- and she's single. I'm happy for her, even though maybe slightly jealous. She's due in May - so that's really pretty perfect.

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At our in-service today, the Duck Company (which starts with an Af and ends with lac) had a representative. I've had them before, and remember getting paid "wellness" benefits for doing things like getting a dental checkup and annual physicals, etc. Of course, I had them my first few years of teaching ... so I'm debating on whether or not it really makes any sense (financially) to go with them again. The cost has definitely increased since 1997 (ha ha!) I'm thinking of doing the accident/sickness/cancer plan, which would be around $45/month.

I'm 35 and relatively healthy (although in the obese weight range). I haven't had a real checkup in almost three years now, so who knows what may come up whenever I get one done (now that I have insurance again!) I am a certifiable klutz. And well, cancer, the incidences of that occurring in young people (relatively young ...) seem to be increasing rapidly ...

What do you all think? Is it a waste of money? Or, is it like any kind of (health) insurance, if you can afford it, you can't afford to NOT have it??

This and That

September 24th, 2011 at 02:16 am

A couple days ago I'd written a big long post, and then Kari (my cat) walked across my keyboard ... poof!

Today we had teacher in-service. It was okay as far as in-services go. We had a real Mass (versus the version we do each week at school.) That was interesting - especially the way the Bishop sing songed most things (other than the homily.)

After we were done, I stopped at Wal-mart and got groceries. When I got home, Kari had knocked down her food container, and her food was all over the floor. Her food container now has a new home. Smile
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The last few nights I've been on an Ally McBeal kick. I'm almost through the first season. I asked some of my coworkers if they'd watched Ally - one said she liked the dancing baby. Later I realized that most (if not all) of the teachers at the table were under 27, so most likely had been in elementary school when Ally was on. (Thank you Netflix for letting me get my Ally fix.)

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Last weekend I was in San Jose, CA celebrating my grandma's 90th birthday. It was good mostly. The very best part of it was going up to Napa and seeing my brother for a few hours. He's recently gotten a job on the Napa Wine Train, and so is pretty much working 7 days a week. This new job is in his field (what he actually got his degree in), so we're all hoping that eventually he'll be able to get out of the restaurant business. (being a waiter is fine, but it is hard on the body + he's got a college degree - it would be good if he could use it!)
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I came up with this project for 6th, 7th and 8th where they are being put into pairs (or trios) and each given a topic related to plagiarism/citing sources. They have to research it, then create a storyboard and a script. Finally, they will make a video (3 to 5 minutes) sharing their information. The Title 1 teacher was in the lab when I was explaining the project to the 7th graders. She later asked me if I had a camera - I told her that I have a flip camera, plus my iPhone camera. The next day she told me she told her husband about my project, and he offered to give me (the school) an extra video camera!! So we'll have a real honest to goodness camera to use!! The Title 1 teacher also taught the 7th graders how to do a storyboard - they had no idea what I was talking about when I introduced it. That works for me - I was planning on explaining it in more detail when we got to it, but now I won't have to spend so much time on it. Big Grin

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I just remembered something I was going to post about last time. Frown Buddy (my mom's Maltese) apparentally bit a small child. I'm not sure of the whole story (and with my mom .... who knows what *really* happened) and I guess he also caused her to fall and scrape her leg when he lunged after a man who was running by (he seems to have something against males of a certain color - he goes nuts mostly only when he sees one ...). So the long and short of it is that she is looking to find a new home for him. Frown

As soon as I heard she'd dumped J and gone back to M, I had a gut feeling that she was going to start looking for any excuse to get rid of Buddy. M and Buddy don't get along too well.

I would take him if I had the time to get him retrained, and wouldn't have to leave him alone from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or later) 5 days a week. And of course there is the matter of Kari - I really don't know how he'd handle another animal taking my attention (or how Kari'd handle it.)

It just makes me sick. To me, when you take an animal into your home, you are making a lifetime commitment. That animal is yours to care for until it dies. I personally even have life insurance to make sure that if something were to happen to me, that whomever took over the care of my current pet, would be financially compensated.

My mom and I are alike in some ways, but in many other ways we are worlds apart.
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When my brother was here helping me move, he checked out my stereo to see what I would need to connect my iPhone to it (to play my iPod music, etc.) While I was visiting him in Napa, we stopped by a Radio Shack and got the needed cord. I now can play my music over my stereo!! Smile

Possibly in November, or perhaps December, I'm going to upgrade to the iPhone 5. Then I'll keep my current iPhone(3gs) as a dedicated iPod/radio. (The regular radio here only gets maybe two or three stations - none of which I care for.)

Leaving on a jet plane ...

September 15th, 2011 at 02:09 am

Well ... I will be Friday morning. Smile I'm heading out to CA to celebrate my grandma's 90th birthday. I'm taking two days off work (leaves me with one personal day for the year ...) It'll be worth it though. Smile

I'll be staying in Albq Thurs night, and leaving my car at the hotel. If the movie theater is close enough, I might go see Contagion. Smile

The person who gave me my cat Kari will be looking in on her while I'm gone. She came over tonight so I could show her where everything is, and she was exclaiming over how big Kari's gotten. Big Grin

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School's been in session nearly a month now, and I can say that I really like my job. There are times that are a bit stressful, but only having the different groups for 30 - 60 minutes at a time once a week .. can handle anything just fine. Big Grin

I also feel like I am where I belong. For the first time in *years* I almost always go right to sleep at night. There is no (or very little) night dreaming (like day dreaming, only at night). Pretty much as soon as my head hits the pillow, I am asleep.

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I'm really not sure what to do about Thanksgiving. One of the men my mom was dating bought me tickets (with air miles) for Thanksgiving. She has subsequently ditched him and gone back to the guy who is so wrong for her. So when I go there for Thanksgiving, most likely she's going to want to spend it with him. And if the relationship actually lasts any length of time (they broke up and got back together 4 or 5 times in 6 months) they may be getting married this summer. What I feel like saying is "if you're still married 5 years from now, I'll throw you a big celebration. Other than that, I have no interest in attending your wedding." But ... ugh! I'd really be shocked if it makes it that far, but I was shocked with her last ex-husband too. So, who knows.

The Thanksgiving tickets are already bought, and I know she'd feel really bad if I didn't go visit her ... Oy vey! Family.

The Cat that Plays Fetch

September 7th, 2011 at 01:12 am

Yes, you read that correctly. A cat that plays fetch. In fact, the cat in question is my 4 month old kitten Kari. I discovered this quite by accident Monday afternoon while sitting on my couch reading. She was bumping up against me wanting attention, so I wadded up a piece of paper that was nearby and threw it. Next thing I knew, she had brought the paper back to me and dropped it on the couch. So, incredulous, I threw it again. At least 25 throws later, she was tired and fell exhausted on her back.

I thought maybe it was just a fluke, but this afternoon when I got home I did a similar thing. She again went after the paper and brought it back to me. Only 5 or 6 times this time though. I wish I had video of it!

I'm very curious to see what all I can get her to do once I start clicker training her. Smile

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Today was payday. Last paycheck basically went to finishing off my moving expenses, plus a bit of current expenses. Todays paycheck pretty much covers Septembers expenses. The next paycheck (18th) will go towards October's expenses, and then I'll be back on track. Once I have $2000 saved up again in my EF, I plan to restart my retirement savings. That should be right around October (2nd paycheck). Boy will that feel good!!

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Today I let the girl who was such a royal butukus last week (switched names with other girl and was quite rude) be in charge of checking out books for her classmates. She was quite pleased, and said she had fun. Smile I don't know for sure if that is the right approach to take with her (7th grader) but I'm hoping that being given a responsibility like that will maybe begin to soften her attitude. She did a good job.

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Tomorrow I have to go back into town so I can get my Synthroid. They were out of stock when I went to pick it up on Friday. :big eyes shock: That is very annoying, but I really can't go without it till Friday (when I'd normally do my shopping trip.) So I'm going to try to get what I need tomorrow. I may need to pick up more bananas on Saturday after church - hate to do that, but the bananas most likely wouldn't last a week and a half.

Happy for a Long Weekend :)

September 4th, 2011 at 01:28 am

First I'd like to mention that I finally updated my Living frugal blog (actually two updates since I last mentioned it here.)

---Silly kitty! I had almost finished the above sentence when all of the sudden my computer started shutting down! Kari had started chewing on the edge of my computer - where the power button is - and managed to hold it down enough to shut it off!

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I took my car to a tire/mechanics place here in town (the only one here) and had them check my tire pressure. According to them, the pressure is just fine. So the little twerp who let air out of my tire(s) didn't let out too much. Whew!

While I was there waiting, I sat next to a Navajo woman who was *extremely* talkative. She was telling me all about these conspiracy theories. That Nasa is trying to keep the repercussions of this new planet that was recently discovered hush hush. (Something like Nubari or Nbaro ...) The reason for all the disturbances we've had the last few years (earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornadoes, etc) has been this planet system getting closer and closer.
She kept up talking for an entire 30 minutes.

Interesting.

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I ordered several books from Amazon. One arrived already on Friday. The one that arrived though, has an interesting story. It had two delivery attempts -- to the post office. Apparently no one was there to receive it at 10 a.m.

Just have to laugh. Smile

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I found out last night that Kari (my cat) LOVES spinach. I was eating a Spinach Souffle and she was *absolutely determined* that she was going to get some. I'd never seen her quite like that. I finally had to put her out of the room and close the door so I could finish my food in peace.

I'm planning on click training her. I already know several commands I'll be teaching her -- OFF and Leave It!!! Big Grin

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I stopped at Walgreens after church today to pick up my Synthroid. They were out of stock!! Seriously??? So that means I'll have to either wait till I go into town again on Friday, or make an extra trip on Tuesday or Wednesday.

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No school Monday, so only one really crazy day next week. (Tuesday) Then the next weekend I'll be going to CA for my grandmother's 90th birthday - will be taking Friday and Monday off. Then the next two Friday's we have Teacher In-service days. I feel bad for my 5th grade boys and the 6th graders - they'll be missing 3 weeks in a row of computer/library. (There is no one to sub for me when I'm gone - if I'm gone, they just don't have the special class.)

Open House - Long, but good day

September 2nd, 2011 at 02:19 am

So for the last few weeks I've been trying to figure out how to get our grade program up and running for this school year whenever I had a spare moment. (ha ha) Today, Sr N canceled my two classes I'd have on Thursday, and let me take the whole day to just focus on getting this done. The teachers were getting really antsy.

It took yet another phone call to tech support, where they finally told me a work around to what I'd been struggling with previously. Basically create 4 spreadsheets with the information and sync it. So, that's what I did. About 5 p.m. today I uploaded the third try, and checked out the gradebooks -- it worked! Yay! Now maybe I'll have time to update the rosters in several other programs. On Wednesday I had 8th graders checking out books, and they saw that they are still listed as 7th graders. Oops. It won't be an easy fix because of how the students were all entered. If it had been done differently, I could do a batch update (update a whole slew at once) but I'll have to do it one at a time.

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Tonight we had open house for K - 5 parents. I had quite a few kids and their parents come to the media center. One funny story:

A family walks in (mom, grandma, two daughters) and the mom says "We come bearing gifts to appease the library gods." It turns out that her oldest daughter had lost a library book when she was in the second grade. Her grandma had just found it. The daughter is now in the sixth grade. The book wasn't in our system, although it had a barcode and label with our name on it. It most likely was marked as lost and the file eventually deleted.