Monday, December 29, 2008
TODAY IS THE FIRST QUIET DAY I'VE HAD OVER VACATION. STEPHEN KING HAS GONE RABBIT HUNTING WITH OUR BROTHER-IN-LAW AND THE HOUSE IS FINALLY BACK TO NORMAL.....QUIET. CHRISTMAS WAS GOOD, LOTS OF FOOD AND FUN AND FAMILY. HOPE YOU ALL HAD THE SAME. EVERYONE IN OUR COMMUNITY APPEARED TO BE IN THE SHARING MOOD, WE DELIVERED SO MUCH MORE THAN IN PAST YEARS. I WAS STILL DOING VISITS ON FRIDAY. HAPPY TO DO IT, SAD IT NEEDS TO BE DONE, YA KNOW?
JILL, I FINALLY MADE IT TO THE RESORT AND THE DOME. COURTNEY AND I WENT OVER THIS WEEKEND AND SHOPPED THE SHOPS, SAT IN THE DOME AND HAD A CHOCO-TINI. I THOUGHT OF KIRSTIE AND ANNA THE WHOLE TIME I WAS DRINKING IT. OUR RESORTS ARE REALLY MARVELOUS LADIES. WE MUST DO A GAGGLE GET-TOGETHER HERE.
I WENT TO LEXINGTON KY ON SATURDAY WITH SOME FRIENDS FROM HIGH SCHOOL, MY HIGH SCHOOL DAYS, NOT MY PLACE OF EMPLOYMENT. ANYWAY, WE ALL TURN 60 THIS YEAR AND THE FIRST TO TURN WAS THE GUEST OF HONOR AT A LUNCHEON. WE JUST FOUND OUT ONE OF OUR GOOD FRIENDS HAS PARKINSONS, BUT IS DOING WELL. DOES 60 SOUND REALLY OLD TO YOU? IT REALLY GRABBED MY ATTENTION. AGE IS NOT IMPORTANT TO ME, AS ALL YOU YOUNG LADIES KNOW, BUT 60? THAT IS 60 YEARS, FREAKIN' O-L-D.
AS YOU CAN SEE, I HAVEN'T IMPROVED MY COMPUTER SKILLS. WHERE DID THAT NICE BLUE COLOR GO? MAYBE IN MY NEXT LIFE I'LL BE TECHNO-SAVVY. MAYBE THIS IS IT, NO. THIS, NO. HERE, I FOUND IT, BUT HOW DO I KEEP IT HERE?
I ALSO WANT TO ADD MUSIC TO MY BLOG, BUT I'M A LONG WAY FROM THERE.
I ENJOYED THE PIX, ELAINE. THANKS, THE KIDDOS ARE BEAUTIFUL AND WE LOVED THE HALLOWEEN COSTUMES. I BET YOUR HOUSE WAS A RIOT CHRISTMAS MORNING.
YOUR ANNA HAS GROWN TOO FAST, WHERE IS YOUR BABY? DON'T THE MONTHS FLY BY? BUT I WILL NOT GET SENTEMENTAL AND WEEPY ON YOU; JUST BECAUSE MY BABIES ARE ALL GROWN AND FLOWN AWAY. I JUST LOVED BEING A MOM OF YOUNGSTERS.
STACI, HOW ARE YOU? I ADMIRE YOUR DECISION TO BE STRONG, BUT DON'T BLOW OFF THIS DIAGNOSIS, TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. I MEAN, YOU HAVE THAT "COOLEST MOM" STATUS TO MAINTAIN. BE GOOD TO YOURSELF, MADAM. THAT'S AN ORDER FROM MOTHERGOOSE.
ANGELA??? I KNOW YOU ARE THERE. TALK TO ME. I REALLY MISS YOU AND WILL HAVE TO RESORT TO PULLING LILA OUT FOR A PHONE CALL SOON. JUST TO SATISFY MY NOSY SELF. HOW ARE YOU GIRLIE? DID SAM AND ABBY ENJOY CHRISTMAS? PROBABLY NOT, HUH? ANY NEW GATORS OR HORSES AT YOUR PLACE? OR HAVE THEY BEEN REPLACED BY RHINOS AND WALLBYES?
ALISON, YOUR QUIET CHRISTMAS SOUNDS SWEET, JUST YOU, REX AND THE BOYS, HURRAY. WHAT NICE COMPANY TO CELEBRATE WITH. I DO HOPE YOUR DAD IS DOING BETTER AND GAINING STRENGTH DAILY. NEVER GOOD TO HAVE ILL PARENTS. THAT ALWAYS MAKE ME FEEL SO HELPLESS. A CHILD I CAN BE STRONG FOR, BUT MY MOM SHOULD NOT GET SICK. EVEN AT 60 SOME THINGS WE AREN'T READY FOR.
STEPHEN KING BOUGHT 10 NEW SHEEP LAST WEEK, HAIR SHEEP. THEY DON'T NEED TO BE SHORN, BUT SHEDD THEIR WOOL. I CANNOT WAIT FOR LAMBS. OUR NAVAJO SHEEP ARE DUE IN THE SPRING, THE BUCK, ZORRO, APPEARS TO HAVE ACCOMPLISHED HIS MISSION. LAMBS ARE LOVELY THINGS. HIS SISTER WANTS TO LEARN TO SPIN AND WEAVE WITH OUR WOOL. I'VE TRIED, BUT SEEM TO BE DISABLED WHEN I GET A DROP SPINNER IN MY HANDS. AND THER IS NO WAY I'D BE ABLE TO OPERATE A SPINNING WHEEL. I'D FALL OFF AND GET HURT. I'LL STICK TO QUILTING, ATLEAST I ONLY GET PRICKED DOING THAT
TALK TO ME LADIES. LOVE TO ALL AND BEST WISHES FOR THE NEW YEAR. HEDY.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
EVERYTHING IS WRAPPED, BERIBBONED, BAKED, SLICED AND DICED IN PREPARATION FOR TOMORROW AND THURSDAY. MY FAMILY IS GOING TO MY NIECE'S HOME IN PAOLI FOR CHRISTMAS EVE TOGETHER. SHE AND COURTNEY ARE THE OLDEST OF THE GRAND DAUGHTERS AND HAVE TAKEN ON THE CHALLENGE THIS YEAR. THERE ARE ABOUT 40 OF US, BUT STORI HAS A LARGE HOME AND A GRACIOUS AND KIND HUSBAND.
OUR KIDDOS AND MY MOM AND LITTLE BROTHER AND HIS FAMILY WILL BE HERE FOR CHRISTMAS DINNER. THE BOYS HAVE CHRISTMAS MORNING AT HOME WITH THE WIVES AND KIDS THEN COME TO DAD AND MOM'S TO EAT. THAT WAS QUITE AN ISSUE THE FIRST YEAR THE WIVES INSISTED UPON IT, BUT THE GUYS HAVE SEEN THE LIGHT SINCE. THEY DIDN'T WANT TO CHANGE FROM BEING HERE CHRISTMAS MORNING FOR SANTA AND BREAKFAST AND THEN BACK AGAIN FOR THE EVENING MEAL. I SUPPORTED THE WIVES ON THIS ONE, EVEN THOUGH I HATED GIVING UP CHRISTMAS MORNING WITH ALL MY CHICKS. THAT WAS A KILLER SCHEDULE FOR EVERYONE.
I'M FIXING A GIANT RIB ROAST FOR CHRISTMAS; WHEN I FIRST CHANGED FROM HAM AND TURKEY IT FELT STRANGE, BUT NOW EVERYONE LOVES IT AND LOOK FORWARD TO STEAK SANDWICHES FOR LEFT OVERS. I MAKE FOCCACIA BREAD THE NEXT DAY AND USE IT FOR THE SANDWICHES. VERY GOOD. COURTNEY MADE PEPPERMINT BROWNIES TO TAKE TO WORK THIS WEEK; HEAVENLY. SHE COVERED BAKED BROWNIES WITH MINI-MARSHMALLOWS , BROWNED THEM A LITTLE BIT THEN TOPPED THEM WITH CRUSHED PEPPERMINT STICKS. ZOOWIE. SHE ALSO MADE BAILEYS FUDGE WITH BAILEY'S IRISH CREME AND WHIPPED CREAM. CHOCOLATE AND ALCOHOL AT ITS BEST.
I FOUND A GREAT WEBSITE...WAIT A MINUTE I'LL BE BACK WITH IT. OK. THIS IS THE CUTEST THING, I SENT IT TO ALL MY LITTLE ONES. YOUR KIDS WILL LOVE IT. http//portablenorthpole.sympatico.msn.ca/home I HOPE IT WORKS FOR YOU. GAVIN AND CALEB FLIPPED WHEN SANTA MENTIONED THEIR NAME AND WHAT THEY WANTED FOR CHRISTMAS, HE EVEN TOLD CABE HOW HE KNEW HE WAS NAUGHTY. THIS IS SOMETHING CALEB WORRIES ABOUT ALOT. SWEET DEVIL THAT HE IS.
I JUST PREVIEWED THE ROUGH DRAFT FOR "GAGGLESPEAK'S" NEW LOOK, NICE. THE SWEETEST YOUNG LADY IS DOING IT; VERY CREATIVE AND INTELLIGENT, RATHER LIKE OUR KIRSTIE, I FEEL. I CANNOT WAIT TO REVEAL IT IN THE NEW YEAR. I HOPE TO HAVE MUSIC FOR YOUR LISTENING PLEASURE AND ADD RECIPES AND SUCH. THERE ARE SEVERAL FAVORITE SITES I WANT TO LINK TO FOR YOU ALL TO VISIT. ALL OF THIS IS WAY OVER MY HEAD, OF COURSE. BUT WHY TELL YOU, YOU'VE WITNESSED ME AT MY MOST CHALLENGED.
JANELLE, I LOOKED AT LADY A'S NEW PIX ON THE OTHER SITE. SHE HAS TO BE THE CUTEST 2 YEAR OLD AROUND AND THOSE SHOES ARE KILLER. I JUST WONDER WHAT HERMAN WILL LOOK LIKE?
WE GO BACK TO SCHOOL ON THE 5TH; HOW ABOUT YOU ALL? HOW FAR CAN YOU VENTURE OUT WHEN YOU'RE 40 WEEKS PREGNANT, JANELLE? I CAN COME TO LAFAYETTE TO SEE YOU ALL ON SHORT NOTICE IF THE WEATHER COOPERATES. I MISS YOU ALL AND REALLY MISS THE CONTACT WE HAD DURING OUR TIME AT ISU. YOU ALL ARE THE 7 DAUGHTERS I NEVER HAD. I LOVE YOU ALL AND WISH THE WARMEST OF CHRISTMAS' AND THE MOST BLESSED NEW YEAR. ENJOY, HEDY
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Tomorrow begins our week of challenge, Ladies. Ice storms are predicted for us, what is the NorthLand in for? Finals, storms, 2 week vacation; not a good combo for middle school students. We almost didn't survive the full moon Thursday, at least that is over. My boys kept stopping up the urinals. I finally had to use my outside voice in warning.
It seems to me that we have been colder than usual here, I cannot get warm when I'm out. Must be getting thin blood with old age.
Elaine, I've decided to save for a kitchen redo, how is your remodel coming? I can't imagine a whole house job and really only need the kitchen brought up to date. My sink is in a corner with nothing to see except the wall, my floor has been down since the 80s and the countertops are fake butcherblock which is separating, all together dysfunctional and ugly. I've decided I'll miss Steve, but I really need a new kitchen. I know he will leave when he hears what I want to do. Our 43nd anniversary is Tuesday so we've had much longer than most couples and I really need a new kitchen. Sometimes you just have to make up your mind and live with your decision. And I really need a new kitchen.
Anna, I don't know what is going on at school, but you are much too young to be unhappy in your career. Find another placement or see if you can't remake your present position, if it survives the economy. Counselors burn out soon enough when we love what we do, don't stay where you don't want to be. That right place is out there somewhere. You'll find it, Girlie. Oh, I do believe Grandma is too sharp for the "bottle in the handbag" ploy, I've heard too many stories of her sharp mind where you kids are concerned. I need to meet this Brett, he sounds serious.
Any news, Jill, on the parents' decision? Everyone is praying for you, Lady. We all have things like this to face eventually.
Is anyone doing any traveling over the Holidays? We thought of going to San Antonio to see the new baby from New York while she visits her grandparents, but I doubt we do. When vacation finally gets here it goes by so quickly, not much gets done. I used to make lists and work my way through them till finished, now I just deal with whatever raises its head at the time. I like to think I'm pragmatic, but not so much.
Janelle, you are almost a new momma again. Please, alert the troops and let us know, Goose or Gander. A friend of mine has a nephew...Brazil. Now there's a name. Our niece has a 2 week old Ada Gram. Her babysitter from childhood was called Grammie and she used that in her honor. Raised a few eyebrows in the family, but I think it is a sweet jesture. And such a beautiful baby girl, just like a rosebud.
Any weddings over the New Year, Kirstie? Any baby news from the sisters? Are you and Pat working at the nursery on weekends or does that end with Christmas? Hang in there with the ugly-spirited coworkers, you'll come out on top. Their ugliness will expose them.
I hope to have a cute updated blogsite soon, more reflective of the multi-personalities living inside this grey head. Stay safe and warm my girlies. Maybe we can get together soon. Love you all.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
Tonight we went to see the grandsons perform in their preschool Christmas program. During the last song Gavin slowly unbuttoned and took off his cute red plaid shirt and proclaimed, "I'm hot, Dad." Had on a cute little grey wife beater underneath. Then he wiped his nose on the shirt sleeve. Caleb stood behind him singing his heart out. it was a sweet moment for G-ma, let me tell you. I love those two sweeties.
I think all my shopping is finished, the tree is in the parlor, undecorated and I'm thinking about baking cookies. Does that count as being ready for Christmas? When did I get so old and tired? I've always put up the tree, decorated it, wrapped gifts and baked 12 different kinds of cookies in a weekend. Now I just want to go to bed and pull the blankies over my head til Jan. 1. Good idea, see you later Ladies.
Have a quick, painless week. Love, Lila
Friday, November 28, 2008
How was everyone's Thanksgiving? Are we all thinking of Christmas shopping? Our chiclets wanted everything the commercials offered today on TV. I had forgotten how kids are influenced by them. We seldom watch Kids TV anymore. I cracked up yesterday when Caleb told Gavin he wasn't big enough for some toy; Gavin responded, "I don't want to be big, I want to stay small and hold my Momma's hand" Now how sweet is that? I realize you all witness such sweetness everyday with your babes, but I cannot resist sharing. Do yours want everything or are they focusing on just one item? Is Abby still into horses, Angela and crocodiles for Sam? Hope his doesn't harm hers, eek.
How are you feeling, Janelle? Not much longer til Harvey gets here, is it? You will be amazed how big Avery looks when you bring the baby home; I always felt as if I'd lost part of my older ones. I left them baby and returned to big boy. Hold tight to the memories of these next few weeks with Lady A, they are precious.
OK, Anna. What is going on there? Do we need to gaggle on someone? Don't claim the blame if it is someone else; no job is worth selling yourself out. I hope you have someone there who is wise to confide in. I miss you, Girlie and want only the best.
I had a tour of the WaterPark last week. We a planning AfterProm up there this spring. What an amazing place it is going to be. They have pushed back the opening til Jan. 31, but I don't see how it will be done then. Lots of finish work inside and some water work to be finished. It will be a unique experience though. The hotel rooms have bunks for the kids in them. CUTE. The public areas are bright, rich colors of a tropical retreat, but the sleeping rooms are neutral, soft colors. Nice views of town and country and the Dome. Prices are affordable, too. Less than $20.00 for a day pass to the park, They will have 4 food venues on site, too. I do hope you all can come down for a Gaggle Gathering and stay there w/families.
We are going for the ultimate retreat on Friday...to Pikeville, Ky. to see Willie Nelson. No, I'm not joking, he is Steve's hero and Courtney gave us tickets for a concert. Now we have to drive for 4 hours into the mountains to hear an old man sing. Steve worked on the parkway through the mountains in the 70s and thought it was the end of the earth, it will be interesting to revisit. We have driven through on the way to the coast, but haven't really looked around for 35 years. I hope it doesn't snow. If you don't hear from me again, look for the body after the spring thaw.
The forecast is for measurable snow here on Sunday; do you all still have snow on the ground, Allison? Did anyone else get any? It has been so cold here, mornings in the 20s. I about freeze during bus duty and then my office never warms up. I wore gloves and a shawl all day on Tuesday. People wrap up before coming into my area. I have been spending lots of time with the kids at school this week. Taking over classes and discussing issues. The teachers seem to have reached a breaking point; one day I showed "Mean Girls" and we had a good discussion about relational aggression. The 8th grade girls rolled their eyes and tossed their hair at me until I was ready for physical aggression. Such _itches. No wonder no one likes them. They have been gathering in the lobby outside my office each morning and critiquing the others as they come in. I pointed out to them the error of their ways, but other than a phone call from an angry mom, no responce. Are all parents blind to the actions of their kids? I pray I wasn't that dumb when mine were there. Mackenzie says some girls in her school are "evil children of Satan", I think she may be right. God help them.
I'm like Kirstie; paddling as hard as possible to keep my head above water at work and still getting more behind everyday. We have started the RTI thing and guess who gets to DO it? Our principal says it won't be here long, just keep stalling. But I feel it is the right approach for the kids who continue to fall short and pushes the teachers to do what needs to be done. Teachers are refusing to refer or follow recommendations. I cry alot over this and our Sp.Ed. director is threatening to quit. Since Mitch was re-elected, this won't change, will it? Even if NCLB goes away? Any advice, Ladies?
I'm giddy over 2 more free days, no plans at all. Stephen says, "Just keep cooking, Mom" and they've all asked for a favorite treat this weekend. Looks as if berry dumplings are next, followed by turkey potpie and bread pudding. Foods on, come see us. Love to all.
Talk to me. Hedy
Saturday, November 15, 2008
On a saner note, it was great to hear from all of you this week. Elaine, it has been ages. Does Little Henry look like your kiddos? We need a new baby around here and our niece is having one next month. We have a shower tomorrow for the expected little girl. I cannot wait to hold this one. Another niece has a 4 month old daughter, but they live in NYC and we haven't seen her yet. It is such a wonderful gift to watch our family grow and have new life. With each new child, the miracle of life is relived and love spreads.
It is great that you have such a willing teacher this year, Allison. I think that can make or break a child sometimes. Poor guy, struggling to learn, because we don't have a grasp on how to best teach. His natural intelligence shines from his eyes and the willingness is there, we just have to stay centered on what he needs. The boys are so lucky to have you and Rex as parents, a real inside track to learning. Sometimes, I just want to advise parents to let their kids be kids and learn naturally, but that isn't always the answer. If they don't get that extra support at home, they can lose out entirely. The softwear packages, I used hardcopy workbooks with mine, are a marvelous addition. You can find them in any interest area and most kids love the computer. But, of course, you know all of this. I have read of the tonsil/sleep connection. In fact, my nephew was diagnosed ADD in early elementary, had tonsils removed in 4th grade and no more symptoms. Joe graduated from IU's Kelly School and makes a mint in Chicago now. Just stay strong, Mama. He will shine. You and Staci have kids who like to be kids and are stifled by the constraints of school rooms. We see so much of that in education. I think back to Mackey's class on education and fitting people into little boxes that move through the system. It makes me sad that we continue to do this. Maybe Montessori is the answer?
Janelle, are you big enough to have another baby? Those shots of you in Florida didn't look it. You appeared alot smaller than with Lady A. Or you know how to hide from the camera, maybe? Anyway, looking good and that child is a star. Such a sweet face. And how about Bob? Bob Hardiwick? Nice strong sounding name, B follows A; you and Brian can work your way through the alphabet. Or Bubba? Hilljacks love the name Bubba. But there are no hills up north, are there? Sorry, I may be stroking again.
How are the parents, Jill? I think of your family and pray for you daily. Any decision on Mom? Be strong. How is Andrew, speaking of family? Sandwich generation seems to define you, Lady. Are you getting to French Lick this winter? I know I won't see you even if you do, but it is nice to think you're close :-) Our friend got a Principal of the Year Award from his last school which was awarded this fall. Makes our Board look bad for not extending his contract. He is such a gem.
I suppose our two young'uns are busy as bees right now. Are you two still getting to spend time together with those perfect men? As a foursome, you must be unstoppable. I imagine dinners together where Anna and Kirstie out-cook each other, a la Iron Chef. Or do you have the guys cooking? A much more modern approach. I hope you are each enjoying this wonderful time in your lives. You have such exciting times ahead. I wouldn't go back and relive my life, but I did love that new person stage of being a young adult and having the world before me. You are such bright, dynamic women, you can have your dreams. Bless you both.
I'm trying to get inspired for Christmas, but keep getting sidetracked. I did get a grant to take our middle schoolers bowling for an academic reward. We, apparently have NO money for anything in school this year. Casino dollars are hidden somewhere. I'd like a chance to use some for direct services to the kids, but seem to be in the minority. I'm also, trying to get another Special Ed teacher and a couple of aides, but have been laughed at. I fear our teacher will resign in frustration and we will be left high and dry.
We are practicing Invisible Mentors with the struggling students,but keeping the staff excited is a battle. I feel they hate me half the time, I'm always pushing, pushing... How do you all do this? Aren't we supposed to do this?
Now back to Christmas...see how distracted I am. I have wiis for each family, so just need to fill in with small items. I'd like to decorate more this year, last year barely saw a tree. I'm thinking filling my urns out front with greenery and colored ribbons. I'll switch out my fall quilt on the swing with a wintery one and put up a new wreath. Wish I could get another square one, Kirstie. We need a new tree this year, I may go back to natural. Except so many trees around here have L-bugs in them. I cannot take that risk. Maybe we'll go retro with an aluminum one with the color wheel light! Mom and Dad had that in the 50s and I hated it. So cold, I thought. Of course, no one listened much to a 10 year olds' take on decor. She also had the blonde Swedish furniture with lime/black lamps, eek. Courtney had her house that way for a couple of years, too. I just don't care for it. I like simple, warm, homey things. Hard to imagine, old Grandma Hedy any other way, right?
I'm having a lady design Gagglespeak for me. I don't like the way it is now. I'd like style and music and a chance to link things like other blogs and websites. But there is that tech problem; as in I don't know how to do any of this stuff. I imagine A and K could whip this out in no time. Do you use any blogs at school? Our seniors, the band and a few teachers have them. The problem is, you can loose days reading them if you aren't careful. Sort of video games for the unco-ordinated.
Hope you all will post some Christmas pix of kids and your homes to spruce up the site. I'll have to change out our beachy pix for winter. Talk to me. Love
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Look, Allison, I managed to add your vacation pix. I am a technology genius, no doubt. Of course, I tried to add Gavin's Halloween picture and couldn't get it to take at all, so all the bugs aren't out yet.
Speaking of bugs; I had another ER trip due to the ladybugs this afternoon. By the time I got to the doc, I couldn't see, hear or breathe. Three shots and 30 minutes later I was OK. My eyes are still swollen and there are blisters on the whites, but I'm better. I didn't even see any bugs, but was doing some handwash of sweaters that Courtney had in storage, there were dead ladybugs in the bottom of the boxes. Such small bugs, such big problems.
Hope everyone is happy the elections are over and can live with the results. I think the country is ready to work for a real change that will benefit us and the world. But tensions will be high for awhile, so much at risk. I pray you all manage well.
We've celebrated b-days this weekend; Steve and Trent on Friday and Saturday. I'm married to a real senior citizen, Girls, Steve is 63. Wow, what an odd thought. We aren't supposed to be old. Trent is 39, another heart-st0pper. That's my baby boy, yikes. We went for late breakfast this morning with Nina, Trent and Gavin and took a long ride through the country to Hindostan Falls and saw 2 bald eagles. So cool. Gav tried acting like a bunnny to attract them but they flew away. The skies were gray and it was only 40 degrees, but it was a sweet day.
Yesterday Courtney and I went to a Silpada style show in a winery in Seymour with Shawn, Mackenzie, Shawn's mom and a friend of hers. It was fun, rather like a meeting of the Stepford wives; same haircut, same thin bodies and lots of silver jewelry. Courtney was weirded out, she and Kenz made bad jokes all evening. The setting was nice, barn-like with lots of festive table decor and music. The Gaggle would have enjoyed being there. :-) and the wine flowed, so Staci, Anna and Kirstie would have had a great time.
Elaine, how's the family? And the new baby? Doing well? Are you getting to be with your sisters much? I know Thanksgiving and Christmas will be special this year with the new members of your bunch adding to the excitement. Allison, you all have a new one, too, right? How is your dad this winter? Recovering from his rough patch, I hope.
The waterpark is set to open over Christmas now. If I haven't said so before, we are getting a STARBUCK"S. Abbie has to come so we can get hot chocolate, Angela. We are also opening an indoor car track, an Amish buffet and deli in the Spring. The Valley is becoming a destination spot, Ladies. Come and be entertained. I can't wait till some shops open that are affordable, as opposed to the Resort shops, my word.
I'm shopping online again this year, but will buy my big items at...WalMart. Go ahead and laugh. I've succomed to the lure of lower prices. Really, my kids want Wiis and Nina is picking them up for me. I'll add a few smaller things for each of them, but not too many. We, as everyone else, are trying to cut back. I got all the g-kids winter coats a couple of weeks ago, so they are ready for the cold.
I am off to watch "Brothers and Sisters", the only series I can keep up with. Have a terrific week, my friends. Peace and love. Hedy
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
I bet your houses are full of goblins and witches, mine not so much. Mostly old crouchy people, and we don't even need costumes to look scary. So sad. :-(
In case you are wondering, the unknown entries are from other bloggers who I have posted remarks on. Seems as if some are not familiar with our quaint city and find the name amusing. Or X-rated. Anyway, I love reading other blogs and have discovered some great recipes, decorating ideas and even a vacation rental house on them.
We had a lovely weekend, hope your was great, too. Courtney, Shawn and I took the girls to Evansville for a shopping day on Saturday. So much fun with no men, not even Caleb. Tried a great Italian place for dinner, La Biaggo?? maybe? Wonderful stuff. Spent 2 hours and breakfast at Borders and then the mall, dinner and topped it off with Target. Great therapy. It has been awhile since we have had a true day out and we all enjoyed it.
Janelle, you and Brian are faced with a challenge...a child's name is so important to his future. And somehow I love the sound of Barack Hard , no maybe Hussein Har or Harry Hussein Harde. Well, let's not name this one after the winner. I love Sloan, Rachel and Anna. We could name her Anna and make that a gaggle name; every baby born from now on to a Gaggle member is ANNA. Simple, easy to remember and a beautiful name. Sam is good, as are; Michael, David, Pete, no, you are right. All names have been contaminated by past students. Better go back to the combination of grandparents' names.
It is really fall in the South, frosted car windows, brisk breeze blowing through the lobby as I do bus duty every morning. The trees are finally turning, too, lots of oranges this year, so bright and cheery. Last evening, there was a bald eagle in the road in front of our house. He was after a raccoon, tried to fly away with it and finally had to abandon it. What a sight. His head and legs were so white against the shiny black of his wings and body, just beautiful. I've seen several around the lake, but never one so close. Blessed to experience a wild creature.
Our marching band made state again this year; we were 2nd last year, hoping for 1st on Saturday. Our director is a home town boy who is 3rd generation Valley band. Our Volleyball team is in regional on Saturday and thank Heaven, football is over. Cannot wait for basketball, my game. Anyone coaching this year?
This looks to be a good week, lots of school spirit, last of the garden cosmos on my desk and today is PJ Day for Spirit Week... It doesn't get better.
Love to everyone.
Monday, October 20, 2008
We were coming from Chicago, reading all the exits signs to your homes and I honked my loudest at the Gaggle at each town. Deb and Courtney marveled at how you live in the flatlands.
The Ophelia Conference was great, again. The ladies have expanded their research into somatic symptoms of RA and have really opened up a critical area in the lives of our youth. You can really soak up the info from them, they all give freely. I'd like to do some training with them when I quit working. Maybe do train the trainer in Indiana schools. They are looking for people to do this all over the nation. Crown Point, in your area, has a strong CASS program in the high school. CASS is creating a safe school and is the Ophelia model for school. Good stuff.
Once again, Jill and I failed to connect in French Lick this weekend. The stars need to be in better alignment apparently. Maybe next time, my friend. It was nice to talk to you, even if your news was not good. Ashley had another car accident, but is OK. Just needed Mom.
We are still on fall break today and I have celebrated in silence; total silence. No TV, no radio, no phone calls, Steve is mowing at the other farm and I'm enjoying every minute. Of course, I slept most of the day, the lupus is taxing me for a busy weekend. I have a new casserole in the oven; pork chops, onions, cabbage, potatoes and an apple cider glaze. Smells great, hope they can eat it. I'll make those pumpkin chocolate cupcakes for dessert, if I can remember how. Hey, dinner's over and the casserole was nice. I'm not too fond of sweet additions to entrees but the fruit and cider were nice additions to the meat and veggies. I fixed frozen chocolate chip cookies, could not remember the cupcake thingys.
It has been nice having Court home again; she is managing well. He has had a few meltdowns but she handles everything in stride. I am proud of how strong she is. We takes turns cooking and doing laundry, read alot and take walks in the evenings. She and her dad are going to the lake in the kayaks some and caring for the livestock together. And watching TV, she is a TV nut like him.
Alison, I couldn't figure out how to post the pix, but I loved seeing them. The guys have grown a foot since summer. My goodness, Jordan looks like an 8th grader. I bet that was a wonderful trip for you all. How is your Dad?
Janelle, I checked out the family shots on your other website; Lady A looks determined to stir things up. Did they ever get a good one? She is a corker, looking so sweet and soft, with a spine of steel and a hard head. Gotta love her.
How's everyones' football team? We made 3 touchdowns this season, didn't win a game and are so glad it is over. Or will be after the 1st sectional game. My buddy, the coach is beyond puzzled with his team; they are all good kids, but heads are elsewhere. I suppose these things happen to all teams sometime. It is hard to watch these boys suffer every week and each week has another injury. We have several on crutches or wearing casts on even in wheelchairs. Not the year of the BlackHawk.
The Valley is buzzing with new happenings this fall; the waterpark is to open soon, we have a new open air market and an art gallery, for Pete's sake. The casino is no longer "a boat in a moat", they have transformed it into just a building. We have a new CVS that is 10 times bigger than the old one. And Big Red Liquor is building next to Chicago Pizza. Thank Goodness we will have alcohol. No really; French Liquors has closed. It is a wonderful town, cannot buy a shoelace, but all the beer you can wish for.
I'm trying to get Stephen King to install a new (old) back door for me. Not much luck. Caleb and Gavin told me yesterday they would do it for me. Sweeties. My Mom gave us her old door with a wonderful window at the top, my laundry room is so dark except for the light from the cracks you can see through. I also need a new floor in there and the kitchen. Does anyone have gold vinyl flooring from the 70s anymore? I tried to remove it down to the hardwood like the rest of the house, but it was glued down with tar or some sticky black stuff. Gotta love retirement.
Back to school tomorrow, hope everyone returns with positive attitudes in tow. We were all feeling low on Wednesday. The free time and beautiful weather should have done the trick. I ordered cut flowers for tomorrow; I'll place one in a pop can for everyone's desk. And I'll take in some of the cookies for my middle school staff. Gotta keep up their spirits. Tomorrow means figuring the grade stats as the kids got their 1st 9 weeks report cards last week. Then I look for interventions to raise grades before the semester break. Positive reinforcement is next in my bag of tricks. The staff loves me. I know, but somedays I worry about snipers outside my office door.
Talk to me, Gaggle. Have a honkin' great week.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
I've decided to concentrate on simple pleasures, such as; my kiddos, cooking good food, talking to friends, loving my husband and playing house. It is much more enjoyable to search for that perfect accent for your wall than to decide if a parent should be allowed to keep a child. I love creating a pretty, pink tablescape beside my bed with just the right lamp, cup/saucer and planter and then deciding which magazines and books to place beside them to browse through before sleep. I'm tired of lying awake praying that this kid got fed and that one didn't get raped before bed. Reality stinks. Back to MY reality; I have the most lucious curtains in my bedroom and am thinking of redoing my bedding to match. Quite a departure from my usual Plain Jane white cotton sheets, handmade quilt bedding. The curtains are an almost cream silvery taffeta, really Hollywood glam. I loved them at first sight and had to have them. Now where to go with the bedding? Or maybe I will do a real Scarlett and make me a dress from the curtains and forget about the bed.
I'm going to redo my parlor this winter, too. I have no clear direction chosen yet. I love simple, but need some life pumped into this little 1920s bungalow. Taupe is getting on my last nerve, Ladies. Living the blah life is boring. Even my pumpkin is white, gotta pitch that thing and go for orange. My dining room needs an update, I'd like to trade out my oak pressed back chairs and pedestal table for something else. We got them in 1975 and I am so over them. I like the look of upholstered seats and dark wood. What do you think? Anyone into country oak? Table/6 chairs--free, of course the haul bill will break you up. The way the economy is falling, Steve will have cardiac arrest if I mention NEW furniture and the oak is good for another hundred years. He is determined to ride out the recession without killing anyone, but his enjoyment in retirement has lessened some. I may let him into my new world of denial, if he plays nice.
Staci, sorry for JD's loss of such an important person in his life. But wasn't he lucky to have had him for so long? Loss and change are so difficult, that's why we need all our family and friends for support. It was nice to hear you praise JD, we women are sometimes too quick to overlook our men. It is so easy to bitch and complain, but really, who else would we choose to spend our lives with. I know Steve is the most supportive, caring man around, but usually just share his annoying habits with others. Strong, intelligent women can praise our men. Let's hear it for Steve, JD, Rex, Charlie, Craig, Brian, Scott, Pat and young what's his name.
Our weather has been picture perfect for weeks, we need some rain, but are loving the no heat, no air conditioning spell. Jill, have you been in the Valley lately? they are really shaping up the town center and have the little Open Air Market area beside the post office, really cute. I hate to think of a Denny's going in, but there is a local guy opening a new 33 Brick St. bistro on the brick street (duh), that should be good. The water park is coming along on schedule. Opening in November, I think. Sometimes change is good. I wish I had the courage and $$$ to open a shop.
Enjoy Colorado, Al. The boys will love the wild west, I bet. Getting out of the normal routine is wonderful for everyone; relax and don't think about work, money, politics and worries (or Mom's wacky ways). I hope everyone has an opportunity to get away for a short break, I'd recommend the resorts in the Valley, but OMG they are pricey. I cannot stay there, unless I get a job mopping floors over there.
Do you and Pat have any single friends left, Kirstie? My word, that was a long run of weddings. How did you afford gifts? BTW, do you have Concord grapes in the Orchard? Or just apples and evergreens? I am craving Concords and cannot find any around here. Of course, I don't go to WalMart or the grocery so it is difficult to find fruit. Lady Avery healed yet, Janelle? The eye and the temper? Maybe you and Staci need to find a good child therapist. I had one who acted like them, but it's better not to get started on that. Just ignore what you can and love them anyway and they will grow through it. It doesn't pay for everyone else to get loud and out of control in these situations. It just adds to the chaos and the kiddo gets more upset. Trust me, I know about tempermental kids. Mine is nearly 38 now. We both survived.
Anna, you've been quiet; that makes me worry. All OK? You have survived ISTEP, haven't you? I didn't read of any counselor fatalities. Is Mr. Perfect still? Are Pat and Kirstie going to go to another wedding soon? Janelle and Elaine are blessing us with babies, you two little girls might want to try that sometime. Your own are soooo much better than the ones in school. Angie, how are the blonde bombers in your house? I pray for them daily, on my make believe Mother Teresa beads. I trust all is well.
Have a beautiful week, Gaggle. Love
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Daughter came in that afternoon, clothing and dogs in tow; left the evil son in law. Do we perform the Happy Dance or allow her to grieve her loss? You are right, we did alittle of both. She is doing fine, holding strong to her conviction that she has had Enough and will not go back. One concern removed from her parents' sagging shoulders. But how to deal with the loss of his kids? We don't know yet. Keep her in your prayers, please.
I hope with the passing of ISTEP you all are back on track and moving successfully towards FallBreak, I know I am. Jill, I'll be in Chicago over our break. It moved this year to Oct.17-20 and so did the Ophelia Conference. My sister and daughter are going with me this time. Shopping, sight-seeing while I try to absorb the answer to relational aggression, one more time.
Our school is full of it this year, I was called into the elementary last week to deal with some 3rd grade girls plotting the downfall of a classmate because she won the Pumpkin Festival Crown. Sad turn of events. I wanted to jackslap the mothers and smack the girls into next week. Needless to say, I did not, but the frustration and temptation were there. I fumbled with my "Mother Teresa Rosary" and took the high road. I'm talking about 8 and 9 year old kids purposely trying to hurt another with exclusion and rumors. Should we start prevention in pre-school?
My "Mother Teresa Rosary" is a strand of crystal and silver beads from Silpada. My sister laughing calls me Mother Teresa and this necklace set her off on the rosary thing. I say, "whatever it takes", and lately it has taken alot. We have not one but two prayer groups at school this semester. We start the week with a Monday 7:15 group and revive with a midweek Wednesday 3:15 group. It has proven to be a wonderful support for all, we can share concerns and joys with people we might not have seen in this light before. I've been surprised with the young males taking part. We have created a stronger, more united teaching force, I believe. The politics of the school had caused some deep rifts in our staff, but hopefully, we are back on track with this activity.
Last night our family celebrated Gavin's 4th birthday with a cookout. What fun! Trent had a fire in the pit and we roasted hot dogs and marshmallows, Nina made chili and I took cupcakes for the kiddos. Gavin is impersonating the Jonas Bros. lately and asked for music instruments; he got a keyboard, guitar and a drum set. They sent me a video this AM of him on the drums singing "your great, great, great grand daughter is doin' fine, fine, fine". So funny, so serious. He tells us Nick, Joe and Kevin are his classmates in pre-school. Caleb has little time for music, he is into creative storytelling or as he calls it, "Tibbing". The child makes up the wildest tales and talks to everyone. He called Kenzie an SOB the other day and then said Johnny, their minister taught him the word. He hadn't told his parents before because, "I didn't want to make Mrs. Kate (the wife) mad at Johnny." He has had his mouth washed out twice this week alone. Last time he asked his daddy to, " tell Papaw Steve what your wife is doing to his grandson". But he is doing very well in school this year. His teacher who last year feared him, now says he is perfect. I'm afraid she may be losing her grip.
Has your weather been as glorious as ours? We have had days and days of bright blue skies and clear, starry nights. The trees are turning gold and red, another fall in hilly, southern Indiana. My best friend Carole is coming over this afternoon to visit and catch up on what's happening in our world. We raised our kids in the country together and try to get together frequently, but life keeps interferring and usually we only see each other once or twice a year. We only live 10 miles apart, shame on us. Her kids have scattered all over the country, while mine have stayed here in OC, but our concerns and love for our grandkids is the same.
I need to step away from the keyboard and get something done, but this writing makes me feel connected to each of you. Janelle, I had an 8th grade channelling you on Friday; he came up to me saying, "housekeeping, housekeeping". I asked what he was doing, he said he didn't know, it just came to him. Spooky. Of course, he's a fairly spooky kid to begin with.
Miss you all so much, wish we were able to visit more often and help each other through our struggles and celebrate the good stuff together. Talk to me. Love, Hedy
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Well, Mrs. H, how is 30 looking from where you sit? I look back on it with dim memories, as I am almost twice that. Geez. Janelle, you are the picture of what 30 should look like; wife, mother and 1/2, professional, friend. You should be proud of accomplishing all of this and only being 30 years old. And being an excellent wife, mother, professional and friend, BTW. It makes me smile to be your friend, you are so much the person I hoped to be as I was growing up, a shy and nerdy child.
Angela, how are the kids this week? Any updates? Is Abby still doing her work with the horses? I hope so. My sister had horses as a child and finally as an adult. She loved them and only gave them up when life became too busy for her to really spend the time with them she wanted. She is the same with dogs and cats...devoted. I am like our mother; animals are for people who live outside far away from me. Mom would freak if Deb let a cat or dog inside. Sometimes she would get up and bring one to bed after our parents were asleep. She would threaten to have them attack me if I told. I DID NOT. Mom didn't know until we were grown.
Is everyone high and dry this week, no trees, wet basements or missing roof? We had no power from Sunday til Wednesday night. But feel blessed when looking at other areas. Along the Ohio river, just a county south they still have no power and haven't returned to school. It is Cindy Cain's school. I can't imagine ISTEP results after this mess. Our kids were so stressed we postponed Monday's tests but continued on Tuesday. I had GQE 504 kids, writing porn for the writing prompts or sleeping through the math section. My 7th graders were great on Friday after those yahoos. I don't think I enjoy high schoolers at all.
Are all the crops out of the fields up there? Hope your families get back to normal soon. I picture all those gigantic flat fields picked clean by Charlie on his monster machines, Elaine. By the way, how are the house renovations going? Or should I ask? Nothing like depending upon a husband for home improvements, is there? Steve has always been the world's worst at working at home. Anyplace else and he is a master carpenter, but... Anyway maybe this winter Charlie will hit it hard at home.
Jill, what's going on with you and yours? Thanks for thinking of me with the party invite. We will have to celebrate everyone's fall birthdays next visit. Our fall break is the week I'll be in Chicago at the Ophelia Conference. I'd like the kids to join me on Friday, but only Shawn seems interested in that trip. The guys don't care for the Windy City. Maybe it will be Ladies Only and we'll shop 24/7. When is fall break in the north?
Wow, I just saw a hummingbird on the feeder, they are moving south in droves this week. I'm cooking for the kids today. Haven't had them all for awhile, it is so much easier when they come in individual families. But I love it when they are all here. Loud, noisy though it is. Our pretty boy Caleb got a buzz cut, oh my. He says now he and Maddie look alike! No hair. Mackenzie and I went to Bloomington to see "Anne Frank" yesterday. She hadn't been to a live performance in a small theater before, she loved it. I'm glad we have something we do that is just ours. I try to do something special with each of them, but Kenz is so much like me it is easier to think of things to do. Shayla is here today helping me cook for tonight, she is a whiz at the grocery shopping and at prepping too. We are having Mexican chicken casserole, corn (Papaw froze it by himself), salad and Texas sheet cake. I made a new bean salad that Court and I had in a cafe in Louisville. Red, black and white beans with green peppers, onion and a light vinagrette. I hope it is good, I just guessed at the ingredients.
I better get back to the kitchen. Wishing you all a blessed week. Hedy
Saturday, September 13, 2008
The blog really worked this week, loved hearing from so many geese. Jill, you will never be out of the loop, you are the loop, Girl. Hope you found some good info on Freshman, Anna. Did you contact Terra? I'd love to start that here, but feel overwhelmed by all that is needed to prepare for it. I'm starting the middle school "New Image" girls' group after ISTEP and that is so time consuming. We try to have a different activity each week which will be an esteem/confidence builder for girls. I bought the coolest, or kookiest book called "How To Be A Lady" for this. OMG, not quite Miss Manners, but almost. Even I think some entries are over the top. I think the girls will get a hoot from it and maybe learn a little, too.
Staci, Carrie just needs to log on to Gagglespeak, as you did. There are no controls on who can enter. I left it open for all. How's she doing with 2 little guys? You and Mellissa sound like too much fun with your Bunko nights. I miss Mellissa, I believe she was my first connection at ISU that long ago spring.
Kirstie, I love you and Pat for your heads up, smiles on attitude about our jobs. You are a fresh breeze blowing on all of us, thanks. What lucky kiddos will be born to your family one of these days; having the coolest Momma and Daddy around.
What a week. I think the European scientists messing with the Big Bang theory have done something to the wildlife in the U.S., meaning our middle school students. Goofy, goofy, goofy and ISTEP coming up next week. I shudder to think what the results will be, and our sophomores are not the most likely to succeed on the GQE this year. Have you all had the Article 7 training? Who is going to do all this extra monitoring and recording and reporting? Counselors??? My classroom teachers are up in arms and will just quit referring. Then where will these kids be? Oh, and how was your week? Sorry, I had to vent and lost control.
AND this week was our "Complaint Free World" kick-off. Most of the staff have red wrists from all the rubber band snapping :-). We have started a Monday morning prayer group for staff. It feels good to at least be postitive in the beginning of the week. We have another on Wednesday after school and by then we need it. It is heart warming to see so many teachers wanting this, I've been surprised by the attendance. Males and females coming together for strength.
It is a gloriously hot day here in OC. Where is fall? I want to cook some fall food, but won't heat up the kitchen. I need to hold on to this for real winter weather which will be here, I know. I guess I'm just worn out with summer. The heat saps my energy, although at school my office is a brisk 24 degrees all year round. I kid you not, my nose drips icicles, visitors request blankets, and my aides wear winter coats. Even the flowers I cut from our garden last 2 weeks, just as if they were in a florist fridge! Our thermostat is controlled by a computer in Houston, no telling what Ike will do for us.
Courtney is bringing her kids over later, we are taking Brianna shopping. She couldn't wear any of the B-day clothes I got her, so she will try on before I buy more. They grow unbelievably fast, no? Bri is a gorgeous blue-eyed blond with a strong mind of her own. She and stepmom tangle often. It is interesting to watch my daughter deal with these additions to her life. They are all learning to love each other.
Hope everyone liked the pix, it is easy to add them. I'd love to see some from you all. My brother is against putting his girls' pix online like this, but I'm not concerned. Crazies are everywhere, but you cannot get paranoid about it.
Are you all keeping up with the presidential race? I'm not a gung ho politico, but Sarah Palin is not ready for much of anything, I don't think. After viewing the Charlie Gibson interview, I don't think she is too smart or world-savvy. Having the balls to stand up and give a speech at the RNC doesn't mean one is qualified to run our country. She scares me. Her views are so narrow-minded. I have always thought John McCain was a good man, but what was he thinking? I'm not totally convinced this is Obama's time either, but the other side scares me. I want a better America for my grandkids than we have right now. This will require real soul searching for all of us in November. Some think it can't get worse than Bush, but I am afraid it can and will, as much as I dislike and distrust him. Gee, I hate being old and crusty. Bah.
Still haven't started a new quilt, gotten out patterns, fabrics, looked, studied, put everything back, again. Where is my inspiration? Help me, Girls. What should I do? Any ideas? I need a goal, a purpose for creating a quilt. A theme, a color plan, a deadline....
I'm also putting off my fall cleaning; too hot, too busy, too tired, need new windows, need a new kitchen, need a new back door. We have a new backdoor in the garage, aiting to be hung, but Steve appears to be as uninspired as I am. The blue funk hangs over our little bungalow, alas.
Everyone have a terrific weekend.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
It was great to hear Abby's good report, Angela. What a thrill. Hope the doc has more good things to share at that appointment. What is her summer Starbucks treat? Having that tradition is great; we do TGIFridays after every Rileys visit with our girls. Who are doing great, BTW. Mackenzie has lost nearly 50 pounds this summer, the meds are being cut back and her body is relishing it. She looks so cute, still so short about 4'9" but so cute. And Maddie is blossoming, too. Loves being back in school with her friends and hasn't lost ALL her hair for several weeks now. It holds on to about 1/2 inch of red fuzz. Sweet. Oh, the blessings of healthy children.
I planned to start a quilt this morning, but just haven't made the move. Nina has the house all clean and I opened all the windows this morning. I just hate to mess it up with fabric scraps and flying threads. I've just kinda sat and looked outside, observing the sights and sounds so far today. Peaceful. I said "no" to every offer I've had today; no shopping, no festival, no going to lunch, just chilling here alone...ahhhh. Steve, Stephen and Caleb have gone to Elnora for the Antique Tractor Festival, Courtney took Shay and Kenz to Jasper for haircuts and lunch, Mom's gone shopping, but I stood firm, feeling I needed to be still for a day.
Angela, I'm going back to Chicago for the Ophelia Conference instead of ISCA. I really enjoy that group of presenters and think they are on target with most of our school's issues. I want to take the CyberBullying Workshop, but it cost so much more to add and extra day. I wish some of you would come to it. My sister is going with me again. It is such a nice few days for us. She loves window shopping during the day, scoping out places for us to visit in the evening. Her son, Joe, and his fiancee, Bonner, will join us one night. They live on the lake and work downtown. Joe is in financing and Bonner in marketing, she has been in some commercials but mostly works behind the scenes. They are a typical professional couple, I guess, but we look at their lives as rushed. Deb keeps hoping they will move back when they decide to have kids, but I doubt that. Orange county, or even Louisville cannot compare to Chicago.
It was interesting to talk to Jim again, he is at ISU working on his doctorate. Draper is gone, of course, in fact Dr. Boyer is the only full fledged professor in the counseling program. They have combined it with some other program just to keep it going. I am not clear on what, but something in the School of Ed. Tonya is in charge, but the cohort is full of complaints and concern; according to Jim. I don't understand how something so acclaimed can go to pot in such a short time. I guess Peggy was all that held it together. She hasn't been back since that time with us, apparently. Draper is in Utah, surprise, and those guys (Cindy, Jim, Shelley and Brownyn) are still in awe of him. Maybe there was more to him than I could see. I thought he just basked in the glory of their adoration a little too much. I might be wrong.
Has anyone heard from Staci or Carrie lately? I heard Carrie is pregnant again. Staci emailed for awhile, but not this term. I miss her craziness. What a role model she is for the girls at her school; strong, self-assured, pretty, and a fashion diva. I missed most of those boats.
Hope you have managed to get together at Anna's new place and met her new man. Nice that she and Kirstie can socialize together with their boys. Just like a storybook or movie script. Our waterpark is on track for fall, hope you all can visit down here. It looks so cool, towering over the town with its glass walls and watershutes projecting out into space. Someone is building an indoor racetrack, too. They've torn up a hillside right below the waterpark, which hasn't set well with some locals, but progress is an ugly business. We appear to be building new instead of saving the old buildings around. Downtown stands empty while next door new towers and landscapes spring up. Makes me sad, I wish we had the $$$$ to invest in restoring an old building and creating a shop or restaurant of some kind. Our son-in-law is an excellent chef and would love a place of his own, but that involves more risk than we can take. He created a shrimp pasta with white wine cream sauce for the place he is working now and it is wonderful, smooth, light and tasty. YUM. His desserts are terrific, too. We have him make treats for Shawn's jewelry parties and all our birthday celebrations.
How are you feeling, Janelle? No problems, I hope. I keep thinking about your cute home, it has such a cozy loving feeling in it. I'd love to have a living room that size, I'd be rearranging furniture constantly. What fun. Of course, Brian's big screen TV would have to go. I can never get them to work in MY designs. Hehehe. Steve doesn't like that about me, either. He eventually, will be caste off to the basement with his TV, deer heads, guns and bows. Or maybe not.
Jill, I don't think our friend will last out the semester here. He has become a target for abuse. if he supports something, it is cancelled, or blackballed. It is rough on him. We all are rallying around, but this week was real bad. Lots of loud yelling and public put downs. I hate it for him and have encouraged him to walk if he wants to. Life is too short for such bull. Hope all is going well with mom and dad in Gosport. Are you all getting closer to a decision? You are in my heart, Girl.
Miss you all and pray your lives are good. Love
Saturday, August 30, 2008
I hope everyone has a terrific weekend going on! Steve is camping w/Stephen, Shawn and their kids are in Michigan visiting her sis, Trent and Nina are vacationing in Ky., and Courtney and I went to B-ton's 4th Street Festival yesterday. Where so many people get all their creativity is beyond me. Walking from booth to booth, seeing all that amazing talent humbles me. Nowhere in my flesh and bones hides an ounce of artistic ability. I can't even conjure up an idea of this stuff, much less execute it. Wonderful works. I bought a sweet journal for one of my students; she's all into recycling and is a very good writer, so I chose a journal covered in a patchwork of recycled fabrics. It even has cutout letters "Recycled" on it. I also picked up a beautifully simple vase for flowers. Low and squatty, it is unglazed in the colors of the ocean. I love it. Like I need more stuff in our house. I could and should have a shopping day, open my doors to the public and let them buy from the shelves, tabletops and walls. I have always been a collector, though in this house I've left most things in storage boxes in the basement. This older woman can't breathe in cluttered spaces. Let me know if you are looking for anything in particular, I'm sure I have at least one of anything! I'd love to share.
Everyone's kids settled into the routine of school and work? What great kids!!! Bright, bubbly, creative imaginations, I could just see their minds working that day at Janelle's. The Gaggle sure has a beautiful crop of goslings, Ladies. Wish we would start posting pix on here. I must have someone teach me how. Other blogs have such beautiful music and lovely pictures, it inspires and frustrates me that all I have done is print and post. Again, that pesky no talent problem. Well I'll keep trying, in the meantime, you are all techno wizards and can show us bits and pieces of your lives.
I have to go into work today; I have 2 grant applications to finish by Tuesday. I've given up SADD, but promised to help with the AfterProm fundraising, so am applying for funds from our Community Foundation. I've taken on more and more admin duties this year, our principal is on his way out and would rather I just do it and not ask his OK. No one else seems to care, so we have made several changes in middle school and are focusing on real middle school issues, not corporation designs. It is working so far. I'm not crazy about the state's idea for 6th grade career and diploma track guidance. I wish 11 and 12 year olds could be kids and fine tune their basic education skills, not be overwhelmed with these decisions so early. We have a 9 week rotation of careers in the 8th grade as well as the mandated freshman careers class. I just don't see what advantage the new plans give the kids. Again, so many do not have the basics they will need to graduate, much less the concept of a career. Oh, well, your man Mitch rocks on.
Jill, a tattoo? Where? What? OMG, you are a wild woman for sure. I think buying a red coat is too wild for me or coloring my hair; I'd be struck by lightening for a tatto, I'm sure. Go girl, for all the fainthearted among us!!!
Anna, settled in? Love life on? I miss our talk sessions and I never watch the Iron Chef, since you and Kirstie aren't with me. You girls made that such a nice time in my life. Thanks for letting me be part of it. Even though I may never be a REAL school counselor, I wouldn't trade my grad school experience for all that time back. My Gaggle is Great. Everyone enjoy the rest of the weeken. Love
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Cindy and I drove up to B-ton together, met Jim, Shelley, Stefan, and Bronwyn and ate at Nic's. It was interesting to catch up with them. Cindy is so happy in Crawford County and they are considering moving there soon. Jim has done a 180; cleaned up his act, teaching, studying, quit smoking and is training for a triathalon. Shelley is back at her old position in Anderson, looking to be placed as a counselor as soon as some internal politics are cleaned up. Stefan is "investigating" all sorts of possibilities, working for Wayne township, still, but not as a counselor. He has an enterprize called HiStep, of which I know little; seems to do some teaching, preaching, inspirational speaking on the West side. Who knows? Bronwyn is divorced, liing with Mom and daughters in a house down the street from ex, working at a school outside of Indy and dating a weirdo from the last school. She's gained weight, but apparently can't afford bigger clothing, smokes and curses like a sailor. Not a pleasant dinner partner. I wish we had been more open to Cindy at ISU, she was used and abused but the Desperate Housewives in that last year. She is a sweet girl and a wonderful counselor.
The girls, Shayla, Mackenzie and Dakota, my brother's 13 year old, are going to B-ton this afternoon for shopping and supper. That will be just what I need after this week. We will hit Border's, the mall and Target before eating at a "grown-up place". They like to ssume the college girl image when they are in town. :-)
Everyone enjoy the weekend with your loved ones; be conscious and in every moment, it goes so quickly. Love to all.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Coming back was a good experience, I found I had missed the kids and the structure of my work day. Of course, sleeping late and reading real books was nice, too. I have discovered other blogs on line that I love checking into; mostly about decorating and raising kids and attempting a peaceful life. They use lots of photos of their homes and decorating finds, talk about their husbands and kids and even offer up recipes. I get all inspired to make-over my world. I have an old book shelf I'm sanding and painting right now to hold all my vintage flower pots. Most are McCoy or American and are figures of animals from the 40s and 50s. My grandad bought my mom and all her sibs cookie jars in 1955 that are the Yarn Doll pattern, I have Mom's and love it. Our family has few inherited items so this is precious to me. I have only seen one example of these jars in antique stores and a few on Ebay. They were only $3 or $4 when he bought them but they meant the world to those 13 kids and to us grandchildren who now own them. One blogger from Australia is really good, so funny and creative. I am lucky to have the time to fritter away on the computer at night. I know most of you are too busy with your families to do this. Happily Steve is pretty low maintenance after all these years. Feed him and place him in front of a TV with the remote, works for hours.
I must face the crowd in the cafeteria now...wish me luck.
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Steve had apples and green beans waiting for me, so I have both on the stove this evening; making more apple butter and cooking even more beans. ;-) Poor guy spent the weekend alone, so I have to humor him.
Tomorrow I'm back to full time; registration for 3 days, then in-service for faculty. I am going to present the "No complaints" concept to them, expecting acceptance and enthusiasm. Sort of a "self-fulfilling prophesy concept. Of course, I am praying over this, too and trying to come up with just the right method of presenting it. I want to just shout, "These kids need to be heard, shut up and listen, consider them, not yourself. Do your job because it needs doing, not because you get paid". But as a transformed counselor, I know that will not be accepted well. Can I just say, "because I said so, that's why?" No?
Going back to work isn't something I dread this year, summer has been great, I feel refreshed and ready. I have my rose colored glasses all polished up.
Gotta go check on the apples. Everyone have a great week, whatever you are doing. Honk, Hedy
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
I've been working today, trying to ease my way into the school year painlessly. I think I'm actually looking forward to it in a strange way. I'm stenciling some bronze words on the walls for inspiration (for me, not the students). We have some new teachers and I'm planning some new procedures for the middle school to freshen things alittle. Hoping to build a positive environment. I've been collecting newspaper pix of them all summer from the local paper for the bulletin board and restocking the candy baskets in the office.
Steve and I went to Ky, Tn and Virginia last week. Quite a voyage; rather like Ma and Pa Kettle Leave the Farm. We got lost as soon as we crossed the Ohio River into Kentucky, traveled in a BIG circle on county roads through only 2 counties until noon. Saw lots of tobacco and cornfields. I'd laugh at him awhile, he'd quit talking to me for awhile then I'd drive and he would laugh...on and on we went for 3 days. I read "Finding Eden", a Christian novel, this summer which was set in Abingdon Va and was curious about the town. We went there and walked around, shopped in great antique stores and bought a chair I certainly "did not need" unquote. Fun time, drove straight home all night because "we've seen all we wanted to see, right" unquote. Get the picture, girls?
Anna, how goes the non-romance? Are you in the new place yet? It is good to have a more homey home, I know. Need a chair? Our parlor has 4 rockers now. Maybe I should purge one. Do you like hickory? wicker? white or pale green? I have a chair compulsion. Maybe. Anyway, give this unboyfriend a chance if you think he's worth it, if not, you know how to bow out gracefully. Do not settle, you are too special to settle for the wrong guy, or job or whatever.
I have 10 gallons of apples in the laundry room calling my name. What he thinks I'm going to do with all of them I do not know. I've tried to make it clear I've done the canning, preserving and freezing scene before and am over it. Retirement is great, just freaking great. Oh, well, he could be gambling at the casino or chasing wild women, nah, too old and too tight. Bless his heart.
Welcome back to the real world, ladies. ENJOY. Love you all.
Monday, July 14, 2008
Thursday is circled in pink on my calendar, cannot wait to see everyone. In that short time we were sentenced to the Badlands together, you all became an important part of my life, and I miss our time together. You all seem like the 7 daughters I misplaced somehow. I am terribly glad you found me and allowed me to enter the Gaggle. A cook out sounds terrific; I'll visit our Organic Market for the veggies for the salsa, my garden isn't ripening tomatoes and peppers yet. And yes, Orange County finally has an organic market, a cooperative of good people with new (to OC) ideas about going green and healthy. We are generally 10 years behind the modern world down here. Anyway it is exciting to have such a blessing within driving distance. The daughter of my first boss supplies alot of the produce and that warms my heart. She was always such a sweet girl, but not "of" OC and I am thrilled she has found her spot here at home. Knocking at those brick walls sometimes pays off. : )
Steve is contemplating coming along with me and traveling on to Door County Wisconsin for a long weekend. But he got 2 new beagle pups yesterday and expects to get our other lambs and goats tomorrow, so he may back out. Wouldn't want to leave the livestock in a new place with only our kids to check on them. Either way is good with me, I'm Buddha, remember. I know Steve would remind most of you of your father, he is such a good guy, you'll like him. Just expect tactless honesty, Bless him.
See you all in a few days.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
My friend, Connie, has already secured a beach house on Dauphin Island for springbreak, she was so impressed with the websites and my reports.
Mackenzie had her sinus surgery on Tuesday, still walking easy; claims her head was struck by a sledgehammer. It will take a couple of weeks to see any real results, but we are expecting good things. Poor child hasn't been able to taste for 2 years and sniffs constantly. She is getting a Wii for having "almost brain surgery", so even if the results fall short, she thinks she's a winner. Kids.
Steve has gone to Salem to pick up some animals we purchased this week. He has been wanting a smaller bred of sheep since selling his and decided to buy some crossbreds; Finn/Navaho/Churo. They are from the southwest and have long wool of varigating color. He also bought 2 Andorra goats for me. They don't even look real, but like stuffed toys. They are small and have long curly hair that lays in ringlets all over. The kids are going to love them, they are friendly and playful. Our neighbors are excited, too. They miss our mixed menagerie if we sell. Even the school bus drivers slow down for the kids to catch a glimpse of lambs and kids in the pasture. I'm still working on getting chickens again, but he just doesn't seem interested. Nina and Trent have an excellent flock and keep us in eggs, so I suppose I won't be getting hens anytime soon. If we had a pond I'd have 8 fine geese.
Wonderful news about Rachel and Andy, Elaine. Her healthy delivery is a great relief to your family, I'm sure. And such an unusual name, very elegant. She will make a wonderful companion to Anna as they grow. I hope to see pix on the 17th. I hope to meet everyones kiddos then, too. Are you bringing them? I'll help Janelle repair any damage before Brian returns, I promise. I carry a tool box most everywhere. Just kidding, Janelle, I'm sure 7 additional kids won't compare to Lady A.
What are we bringing for lunch? besides Alison's ice cream? I made some great Lime cookies yesterday. Very tea-party delicate. Not sure how they would stand up to wine, but they might go with the sparkly kind Elaine and Alison like. I'll bring some French Lick varieties. And a couple of loaves of the winery's bread and olive oil for dipping. Want salsa and chips? No problem ,just tell me.
We are having a B-day party for Michael today. He is 4 and such a cutie. He is Court's step-son and we only get to see him every 2 weeks. The kids want a cook out, so that's easy for me. The guys usually take over the meats and I do the inside preps. I have to fix ham salad for Kenzie, she can't have hot dogs or beef. and macaroni and cheese is a must, they can eat their weight in it and will. Our garden is really starting to produce, lettuces, cucumbers, a few tomatoes, rhubarb, peas. Green beans are blooming so they won't be long in coming. Steve keeps it looking like a picture, retirement is a good thing.
I plan to call Anna and Kirstie before the trek north, to plot the path. I have no grasp of who lives where on the map. You girls will have to get me to the closest house and take it from there. I am a good driver, but failed navigation. I think I can find Crawfordsville again, Anna, can we get to Kirstie's from there? Or does she come first? I may have to leave Valley at 4:00 AM. Plot it out on mapquest and email it to me, maybe?
Cannot wait until the 17th, Gaggle. Enjoy the coming days. Love, Hedy
Monday, June 16, 2008
we are on Dauphin Island in a wonderful home soaking up the sun. everyonehas settled in well. yesterday we went to the astuarium and saw the sealife, bought fresh peaches, melons, even tomatoes. WONDERFUL.
Anna, welcome to middle school, that trip is so typical for them. gotta love it. And we can make that roadtrip whenever the girls plan our next get together. I drove 700+ miles Friday and Saturday in a big ol' Excursion diesel. Varoommmmm. Grandma Hedy and the younguns headed south. I can handle the Jeep in northern IN. I hope you find an apartment soon, I love home shopping. I want to do a navy and white bedroom with a beachy theme, nothing tacky, just clean contrast. I have looked for just the right bedding, but no luck yet. One of the beds in this house is in those colors, sort of a batik spread and washed furniture, very smart. I would have to use our back bedroom with the twin bed and rustic furniture. I really love our room in whites and taupes and do not want to change it yet.
I haven't been in the pool here, Caleb asked me not to get in with him because he doesn't like fat skin. Talk about an embarrassed momma, Shawn about choked. He hid in the house this morning, we were close to calling the police when out he strolled asking, "what is all the yelling for?" He got his butt beat for that one. He claimed he heard us calling his name, but didn't know we meant him or some other Caleb. He's 5, I shudder to think about 15.
I better get, the kids are planning to eat out tonight and I'm not dressed. Although I can usually wait on them to get ready and still be done before they are. Shawn's on the phone trying to book Silpada parties. Anyone interested? It is beautiful stuff. I got a terrific silver watch and some nice silver hoops. I will bring some of her books when I come. Ofcourse, I make a great model for the line. You will all want to look like me.
Oh, now there is talk of a dolphin watch tonight. That means this bunch on a boat???? I'm not sure.