Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Checking on you.

It is Wednesday and I'm ready to leave work. I've done all the damage I can here today. Not much accomplished, but... It appears that 95% of our incoming students are related. I've been reviewing records and most of them have the same contacts listed. It is a small town, but this is scary. I have visions of a giant spider mother casting her million babies out among us, all still connected to her by a silky web. Or maybe my lunch didn't sit well. Whatever.

I loved hearing from Kirstie and Anna this week, but where,oh, where is eveyone else? Finishing work, ball games, raising kids, planting gardens, feeding pets and husbands? It is strange that only the OLD and YOUNG have time to communicate. I remember days; moving faster than the speed of light, leaping tall buildings, running the world. And then I got old and tired. Slow down, girls, it will happen to you, too. Is this the last week for everyone? Hope so. I hate to think of anyone working in June. June is my favorite month; vacation, warm without hot, garden blooming, everything fresh, not burnt, vacation, vacation, vacation.

Anna, do come visit. Or maybe in July, I can come up and we can visit all the others. Sort of a drive-by party. Door to door gaggling. Doesn't that sound fun? Two or three days should do to visit everyone. Are you game? I know everyone cannot come to Orange County at the same time and Anna and I don't have small kids keeping us at home (yet or anymore). Has anymore thought been given to going to Jill's? That could be one stop on the agenda. We could meet at that coffee shop my cousin plays in on Friday nights in Brookston. Wow, that almost sounds like having a real life. I'm excited now.

How are all the babies, girls? Abbie's sessions going OK, Angela? I loved that article you forwarded. Amazing. Is Sam riding yet? I figure it is just a matter of time till you have a ranch. Is Lady Avery driving yet, Janelle? A pink Barbie jeep or red 4-wheeler? Alison, no ER visits yet this summer? Well it is early yet; I'm sure you"ll be there soon and often. Do her big sibs have Anna tied to a tree yet, Elaine? And Jill, how's little Andrew this summer? Is he moving off the couch yet? Really, Jill is he feeling better? Are you?

How are everyone's parents? My mom is much better. I think the winter was about to do her in. She's out and about again, now. But it sure aged her, she is finally looking past 65. Not old enough to be my mother, but older sister. She's a sweetie. Locked herself out of the car, called my sister, Debbie reminded her the key would still unlock the door even if the remote broke. Hilarious.

Better go, Steve will be looking for supper, again. He just ate last night.
Post some news, gaggle. Love

Monday, May 19, 2008

The end is near.

This weekend was fantastic, wasn't it? True tourist weather, warm, bright, dry and breezy. Two of those fleeting days that make me glad to live in the Ohio Valley. We had Shayla's grad party on Saturday and a cookout at Courtney's on Sunday, lots of family time with few issues. The adults were pleasant and the kids played well together; what more could I ask for? I am blessed. Or blind?

We had MORP for 7th and 8th grade Friday night. It was a great success; no drama, lots of food and music and the art classes helped with turning the cafe into a Hollywood premiere. Parents rushed us at 9:00 for pix of the royalty. but the kids quickly recovered and danced for awhile longer. I was so proud of everyone. They cheered and clapped for each contestant and seemed to be genuine in their support of the winners. Our "penny wars" voting took an ugly turn late in the week when parents got too involved. However, the kids rose above it and all is well. And SADD has a wheelbarrow full of loot to pay the bills. Win, win.

I worked in my gardens some this weekend. Is there a real purpose for weeds? We are blessed with wild mint that runs rampant over any cultivated ground.Smells wonderful but smothers out everything in its path. I pulled masses of it and by this AM, it is back. My roses are lovely this spring and the Carolina lupine is gigantic. I cannot grow true lupines, so have to be satisfied with a look-a-like. I can't do hollyhocks either. Go figure, hollyhocks can grow on stone, but not for me. I put sweetpeas along the southside of our garage this year, I'm hoping for complete coverage, or we have to paint. If I were an artist, I'd create a sweetpea mural to cover it. But my siblings got all the artistic genes. So I depend upon brute strength and my gardening skills to create beauty. I do love sweetpeas, tumbling over each other along a path or climbing up a wall or fence.Have you seen the art work of Tasha Tudor? An amazing woman, lived alone in a cottage well into her 90s with her Corgie dogs and her flower gardens. She does simple scenes of cottage life, gardens, animals and stone houses. Inspiring. I believe she has a caretaker now, but is still productive.

I just came home from a SADD Cafe, a take-off on the 50's Beatnik joints. The kids sing, play instruments. recite their own poetry, or do comedy. Tonight everyone was dark and gloomy, heavy angst stuff. Such adolescents!! The Germans were right; storm and strife. I told them to come see me in 15 years, they would be singing a different tune. I certainly hope so, at least. Such talent they all have, I don't remember ever being so deep and musically driven. But I could pull quotes from literature with the best of them. Books were my love then. Of course, I hadn't met Stephen King then. The author or the husband.

I am positively dizzy with the fact we have on 3 days of classes left. I was not sure we would make it at times this semester. It is still quite tense. One of my co-workers told me today to stick my 'sunshine' where it wouldn't shine. Obviously she isn't buying into my new anti-complaining line of thought. I hope summer is all we need, but things do not look good for fall either. Our super "P" is pulling rank and people are ticked, even the other Ps. I just look on with P envy, and bide my time.

Speaking off; do any of you do class trips? Say to DC or Chicago? Our middle school staff want to adopt a class, follow them for 3-4 years and take a trip with them. We've been shot down on overnighters, but hope to change that. I took the freshman to the 2000 Inaguration and it was terrific. But they wouldn't allow it for next year. Have you heard, I do not like schoolboards, administrators or parents? I just think we (educators) have to do more for kids, we must expose them to the world, or at least our own country. I really agree that we are dumbing down America and it is a scary thought. We cannot afford not to have the best and brightest. Share your travel secrets with me, please. I'm giving up SADD and need another project. Although an alternative school for Orange county is really nagging at me. We decided to retain several kids this year that just cannot cope with regular school but so not qualify for other considerations. I think most might thrive in a good alternative school. Anyone game to move south and join ranks? Between us, the Gaggle has the expertise in all areas of education, I do believe. And Rex could be our token P.

Hopefully you all will be outta there soon and enjoying a glorious summer. Take care, everyone.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


Does anyone else feeling her head twisting off her shoulders? There seems to be more to finish before school is over than ever. Everyone has shut down for the year in middle school, our teachers are threatening to walk out or to beat students. Even the cafeteria ladies are complaining about lunch manners! So much for my positive attitude initiative. Actually, I am doing much better, I am choosing to look through my rose colored glasses and ignore negative thoughts. tra-la-la.

Life is too short to dwell on the things we cannot change; if it bothers me, I'll attempt to change it, otherwise, I'm over it. No more whining and complaining. I've been sharing this with anyone who gripes to me lately. They either shut up or say thanks. Talk about "brief therapy" ;-). My sister is trying to turn her worries over to God, I suppose that is what I'm doing, too. I do know she has become a much happier person and smiles much more than ever. Why do we wait till we are 50+ to stop struggling with control? I purchased some rubber bracelets saying "All is forgiven; move on". I love them and have given them to some who have battled with control issues. My sister was the first to receive one. We both wear them alot.

My siblings and I are spending Saturday at our mom's house and doing all those little projects that have been accumulating for years. She recited a poem at our Mother/Daughter Banquet that made us all cringe with guilt.
I Love You, Mother
I love you Mother says John
as he walked through the house with muddy boots on.
I love you Mother says Tess
as she created another kitchen mess.
I love you Mother
says Little Fan
as she washed and swept 'til spic and span.
Oops, words are cheap, actions tell the tale. So off we go to show our love of Mom. It will be a good day, working together; I just hope Mike and Debbie don't revert back to fighting like they did 40 years ago. I doubt it, they don't have the spunk, they used to.
This opens another subject; why is strength wasted on the young and wisdom on the old? If I were in charge (again with the control) I would give kids the good sense to make wise decisions and not mess up their lives and old folks the strength to manage alone in the twilight years. But, again, no one asked me.
I'm administering AP tests and have some absolutely free time right now, priceless. I am feeling so much for these poor AP calculus kiddos. I couldn't even remember how to start a calc problem right now. I have another case conference next hour, apparently 2/3 of the incoming 6th grade are special needs. They all seem so sweet this year and so small. I hope they toughen up over the summer. We have orientation tonight; lots of different rules and regulations from elementary to middle school.
Put on those rosy shades, Gaggle and waddle on. Love