Tuesday, May 29, 2012


This was as exciting as our three day weekend got.  We took the nugget to Dairy Queen for his first ice cream cone.  He had absolutely no interest in it, however, after Daddy gave him a sip of his milkshake.  He was perfectly content to sip and sip and sip and sip on the straw with the breeze in his hair as he watched the cars go through the drive-thru, waving to each car that passed.  I think I found a new activity for those crabby days.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Random Thoughts

~I love the flavor of strawberry banana yogurt, but I dislike the pieces of strawberry found within.  I like strawberries to be firm when I bite into them, but the berries in yogurt are always mushy.  This displeases me.  Can't someone make a smooth strawberry banana yogurt?  Please?

~Tomorrow is School Spirit Day.  Students are supposed to dress like the 70's.  Um...I'm pretty sure that this age group has absolutely no clue what a hippie is.

~Only 25 more days of school!

~It is supposed to be sunny and in the mid-upper 80's this weekend.  I am so looking forward to visiting the pool with my little family.  I am SO NOT looking forward to wearing a bathing suit in public.  Ick.  Are there women out there who actually enjoy wearing a bathing suit in front of others?  I'm not sure they exist.

~The other day, a student asked me if squirrels laid eggs in their nests.  I told him that squirrels do not lay eggs.  He then asked me if squirrels just pooped their babies out.  I giggled and said kinda.  I'll leave that full convo for his parents.

P.S.- I am testing in the silent room again this week.  So these are the thoughts that run through my head during the silence.  Aren't you glad I shared?  Happy day-before-the-day-before-the-weekend!

Monday, May 21, 2012

obsessions, vol. 2

Another link up with Saige Wisdom!

Onto a few of my favorite things of late.

~The countdown.  The last day of school is so close, I can almost taste it.  I may or may not have started my countdown to this day somewhere around approximately 110 days.  (I'm excited to join the club of stay-at-home-mommies.  What do you want from me?)  But now, I've made it to the twenties.  Twenty-seven, to be exact.  That's not a lot of days.  Hooray for summer!

~Grey's Anatomy.  I oftentimes get behind on shows, and then suddenly remember them like a friend I'd forgotten to pick up at the airport.  OMG!  I haven't watched Grey's in WEEKS!  HUSTLE!  HURRY!  WATCH ALL OF THE EPISODES!  And that's what I did this week.  And holy cow.  Lots o' tears.  And sadness.  And anger.  And anticipation!  (I won't find out what happens until SEPTEMBER?  Damn season finales.)  Just, holy cow.  If you are a fan and you've gotten behind on you DVR, I suggest you catch up.  Immediately, if not sooner.        

~Corn on the cob.  Okay, I just decided this was an obsession last night.  I made my first corn of the season, and I swear to you, it was the most delicious thing I've put in my mouth in weeks.  Sweet, buttery, salty, goodness.  And I believe I've finally decided upon the best way to prepare it.  Throw it in the oven, still in the husk, at 350 for a half hour.  Weird, right?  I believe I saw that idea somewhere on Pinterest.  Folks, it works.  The husk and silk peeled right off after cooking, and the corn was perfect.  How easy is that?  Try it. I will be trying it again at lunchtime today, when I will be eating more corn.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

~My husband.  Okay, okay, I'm always obsessed with him.  But this week, I'm especially proud of my man.  He's loved working as a contractor at his current company, but yearned (yes, yearned- for reals) to be brought on as a full time employee.  Well, on Friday he received the job offer to end all job offers, and will now be a "real boy," as he says.  He moves out of his contractor's cubicle and into his real boy's office next week.  My heart, it beats only for my Staff Engineer.  Proud wife here.

What are you obsessed with lately?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Pinspired: Pinned It, Did It! Vol. 3

Pan Roasted Lemon Garlic Chicken

Although this pictures looks nothing short of amazing, the dish lacked flavor.  I know that's hard to believe, since it's chock full of lemon slices and garlic cloves, but I have made much more flavorful chicken dishes.  Also, the olive oil was a little overbearing.  Oily chicken?  No thank you.

Ranch Chicken Tacos

THESE. WERE. AMAZING.  Will definitely be adding these to my rotation.  Gotta love a new spin on taco night, especially when the meat is cooked in the crock pot.  Delish.

Melt In Your Mouth Chicken
Source: food.com via Betsey on Pinterest

Didn't really melt in my mouth.  And most certainly didn't form a beautiful crust as shown in the picture.  The flavor was not bad at all, but the dish just wasn't what I was hoping for.  Meh.

"Best" Pork Chops

Well, the flavor of these may, in fact, be the best flavor I've ever tasted on a pork chop.  But I was a little bummed about the lack of crunch on the breading.  I even baked them up on a rack, but it didn't seem to help.  The underside was soggy.  Maybe next time, I'll flip them halfway through the cooking time?  Most definitely worth trying again.

Oreo Layers

Yummy.  Oreos, Cool Whip, cream cheese, pudding- what could possibly be wrong with that?

Scarf Organization

I did this as part of my closet overhaul.  What a great idea!  My scarves are tucked away nice and neatly.  Success.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Twiddling My Thumbs

It's testing time.  That dreaded time of the year when I administer the End of Grade tests to third through fifth graders in my school.  Since I am not a homeroom teacher, I am usually asked to test students who require testing in a separate, one-on-one setting.

So myself and a proctor (usually a teacher assistant) sit in my tiny room for hours at a time, watching one poor schmuck take his or her test.  Checking over shoulders to make sure that the number on the bubble sheet matches the number in the test book. 

I'm not allowed to eat, drink, sleep, read, breathe too loudly, cough too loudly, get the hiccups, sneeze, clear my throat, or watch the paint dry.  Hell, I'm probably not even allowed to twiddle my thumbs, but a girl's gotta have something to do, am I right?

After today, I only have 30 days left here.  And this is what I will be doing for the majority of them.  Good times.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Well, What Do You Know?

I AM appreciated!
If you're a fellow teacher, I salute you.  If you're a parent, do something nice for those who help meld the minds of your children.

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week, y'all.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Thank You, Mr. President

Yes, I'm going to go there.
Many things have been said about President Obama's endorsement of same sex marriage last night.  The news outlets, social media and the interwebs as a whole have been abuzz after this revelation.

The most prevalent opinion I have heard and read is that this is a political ploy, a way to call attention to himself and grab votes before the upcoming election.

Friends, let's think this through.  Whose votes did he win?  He almost certainly already had the support of any staunch supporter of same sex marriage.  If anything, sadly, he may have just cost himself votes.

So, I say bravo, Mr. president.  This was brave.  This was honest.  This was the right thing to do.

Thank you.

A North Carolina Resident Who Believes In Equality For All, and Who Is Saddened and Ashamed By Her State's Passing of Amendment One

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

How Is It possible?

...that almost every single morning, I wake up with some crazy song from Yo Gabba Gabba in my head?  It may even be from an episode that we haven't watched in weeks. 

Folks, I promise you, the nugget DOES NOT watch a lot of TV.  He watches one episode of "his show" to settle down and cuddle in my lap before nap.  That's it.

But THIS SHOW.  It sticks with me.  All the live long day and night.  And apparently, it's so deeply rooted in my subconscious that it's the first thing my brain conjures up as I stumble out of bed, sleepy eyed, each morning.

Some of my favorite gems:

"There's a party in my tummy!  SO YUMMY!  SO YUMMY!" ~ to teach us the importance of trying new foods and eating healthy snacks

"All My Friends Are Bugs" ~performed by none other than Weezer, to teach us not to be afraid of insects

"Jumpy jump jump jump jump.  Jumpy jump jump JUMP JUMP!" ~ to teach us that jumping is fun?

And then, there's the ever popular (and completely weird) segment Biz's Beat of the Day.  The "Biz" we're referring to is- you guessed it- Biz Markie.  To teach kids how to beatbox poorly?  My favorite is the beat in the "Sick" episode.  Hold on to your hats, peeps, because this one will blow you away-  "Give-a-give-a-GET.  Wicka-wicka-WELL."  What a genius.  Truly inspired.


If you are a mommy friend, maybe you feel my pain?  Or am I the only one who is cursed with the constant barrage of stoner*/kiddie tunes streaming on repeat through my mind?

*The kiddies are not stoners, no.  But the people behind this show most certainly are.  For reals.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Just Keep Swimming. Just Keep Swimming.

This weekend, the nugget had his first official swim lesson.  This also marked his very first time in a swimming pool.

Um...he loved it.

My little fish started splashing about two seconds after we entered the water, and continued to do so for the next ten minutes until the start of the lesson.  Oh, yeah, and he was laughing hysterically all the while.

He had absolutely no problem with me putting his face in the water, he kicked his little feet to "swim" to the side, and then he learned to pull himself out of the pool.  He giggled and smiled the whole time, and he certainly charmed his teachers.  I'd call this a success!
Watching the big kids in the pool behind ours.

Just stepping into the pool...

It's so fun!!

Bobbing around, laughing.

We love the pool!

Back floating.  Water in the ears?  NBD.

"Swimming" to the side of the pool.

The rain bucket, raining water down onto the nugget.

Climbing out on his own.  Can't wait for next week!

Monday, May 7, 2012

That Darn Dog!

What a night...

I've blogged about my dogs before.  They're rotten, but I love them.  And as much as sometimes I dream about how much simpler life would be if I didn't have three pets to take care of, the truth is, they're part of our family.

Delilah is a GREAT dog.  She was a horrid puppy, but she's grown up into pretty well behaved adult, except for one very unfortunate trait- she's a runner.
Delilah, happy after sanctioned back yard running in the snow.
For whatever reason, she gets the slightest whiff of freedom, and she's off like Flash Gordon.  Running at top speed, foaming at the mouth due to the sheer excitement of the situation.  And she won't stop for nothin'.  I kid you not when I say I could lay a steak on a silver platter in front of her, and she'd run the other way if she thought this meant capture.

Last night, as I was feeding the nugget his dinner, I heard a knock on our front door.  J answered, and I thought I heard mention of our black dog.  Panic immediately set in as I walked to the front door to hear the tail end of what our neighbor was telling us- that Delilah had escaped through a loose picket in our fence, and had headed for the woods.  J immediately runs down the street, barefoot.  And I sulk my way back to the kitchen, only to find that Gabe has emptied his fruit pouch onto his lap.  Good times.

Every other time Delilah has escaped, it's been through the front door, and we've seen it happen.  We've been able to track her, running after her through yard after yard.  And for no other reason than dumb luck, we've caught her every time.  Usually by some dive into the mud during which we somehow miraculously manage to hook a finger into her collar.  And always barefoot.  I'm serious, people.   

But yesterday, we didn't see it happen.  By the time we made it into the street, she was gone.  No sight of her anywhere.  We drove and drove, around the neighborhood, around the streets surrounding the neighborhood.  No luck.  I was devastated.  But I held onto the hope that someone would find her.  She is microchipped, and has a tag with my phone number hanging from her pretty pink collar.

I posted a message with her picture on Facebook, and was overwhelmed by the niceness of people.  Several locals re-posted her picture for their friends to see, and some friends even got into their cars and searched the streets.

Going to bed was the worst.  Knowing that she was out there somewhere, and there just wasn't anything I could do about it.  We left the gate to the backyard open, and also chose to lock the storm door and leave the front door open, so that Daphne could see outside and watch for her return.

I felt pretty hopeless about that.  After all, she had already been on the run for over five hours by the time we went to bed.  But I wasn't going to rule anything out.  Daphne was perhaps the saddest of us all.  She LOVES Delilah, and looked lost without her.  Since she sleeps in a crate downstairs, J knew that she would bark to alert us of Delilah's homecoming, should it happen in the middle of the night.
The pups, cuddling in happier times.  Daphne clearly loves the black one.
 I laid in bed, utterly fitful, sleeping for only a few minutes at a time, checking my phone, listening for barks.  And then, at 3:30, I heard Daphne let out a high pitched bark from her crate downstairs.  J and I  shot straight up in bed, and J sprung up and hurried down the stairs.  I stayed in bed, too afraid to get my hopes up, and truly thinking that Daphne had probably seen a cat wander by.

I can't tell you how happy I was when I heard two dogs THUNDER up the stairs to say hello.  SHE FOUND HER WAY HOME!  J said she had come through the gate into the back yard, and was jumping up at the back door to be let in.  YAY!

Today, after ten hours of running, Delilah is a tired dog.  She usually wakes us up by 6:30 each morning.  Today, she was not interested in waking up.  She walked downstairs and got right up onto the couch to sleep some more.  And as I was getting ready, she couldn't even make it to the dog bed, but slept on the floor right next to it.  But not without Daphne, who won't let her out of her sight.
They're holding hands.  The cuteness.
Happy puppies.  Happy me.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Something Wicked This Way Comes

Friends, I admit it.  I am a theater dork.

In junior high and high school, I was in all of the shows.  I was even in a regional theater production one college summer (and got paid not quite enough to cover the cost of gas to and from daily rehearsal, but that's neither here nor there).

I love Broadway musicals.

This week, I was lucky enough to be offered a ticket to see Wicked.  This is the first chance I've had to see this show.  And I've gotta say, for me?  It absolutely lived up to all of the hype.
 Never again will I be able to watch The Wizard of Oz through my previous lens.  Wicked puts a whole new spin on the story of the Wicked Witch of the West.  In this version of the story, she's not wicked at all...merely misunderstood.

The set and music were great.  Songs like "Defying Gravity" and "For Good" were beautiful, and are still running through my head.  But the story is what really grabbed me.  It was clever and interesting.  A story about love and friendship, above all.  It left me in tears.  And just when I thought I had myself under control, Glinda and Elphaba (the witch) came out for their curtain call, and I cried all over again.

If you are an Oz fan, you simply must see this show.  Or even if you're not, but you enjoy the theater, go.  Really?  Everyone, just go.  I'm still thinking about it, days later.

Locals can catch it at DPAC through May 27th.      

Thursday, May 3, 2012

I Think He Likes It

Grammy bought the nugget a water table while she was here visiting last week.  I can't be positive, but based on this look, I'm pretty sure he's in heaven.
Happy, wet baby

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Couch Must Die

My mother aptly titled this post.

You see, in the bonus room (yes, the one we are in the process of saving) lived this couch.  How we ended up with this couch is a story all on its own.  I had a perfectly fine couch up there, but bim, bam, boom!, a three couch switcheroo happened one day and we ended up with this couch.

It is a mystery how we got this couch into the bonus room.  Because I assure you, we have tried again and again and AGAIN to get it outta there.  No such luck.

Operation Save-a-Bonus-Room cannot commence without the removal of this couch.  SO, during my mom's recent visit, we made it our mission to remove this couch from the premises.

A story of a couch's death, in pictures:

The beginning.

Lots o' cushions.

Scarred doorway from our many attempts at removal.

Trying to see what we're working with on the inside.

Removing upholstery. 

Down to the padding.

Flipped the bitch over and got to work with the crowbar.  

The guts.
Notice the saw atop the piles of insides.

An arm, resting in the kitchen.

She served us well.

AND it's cut in half.  

The space left behind.
Death to the couch.


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