When I was a little kid, Sesame Street was my FAVORITE show! I was a 1st Grader in Columbia, South Carolina in 1969 when the show started. It came on in the evening, right after dinner, on the local "Educational TV Station." My dad was the type of guy who cared enough to shelter us from dumb TV, so he'd type up a list of shows we could watch. Honestly, I don't remember watching any TV before Sesame Street started.
Anyway, when I first met Cookie Monster, I fell in love.


F*&%ing Childhood Cancers

PLEASE visit this website. This child is very dear to one of my students, being that she is his little sister. Obviously, as a 10-year old boy, he is devastated over what is
happening to his baby sister.

They'll Get You in the End...

Beautiful daughter has maintained a 4.0 GPA since she was in 6th grade. She's one of those perfectionists who can easily border on being ill in order to keep things as close to perfect as can be (there's a story behind this that's WAY bigger...but not today...)

Yesterday was her worst school day yet. She came home in tears, absolutely exhausted and tender.

She is taking an A.P. Physics course that has really stretched her brain. A.P. U.S. History, A.P. Calculus, A.P. Bio, A.P. Chemistry, A.P. College Writing...and more...were tough classes, but she gets her brain wrapped around this stuff and excels! However, for some reason, physics has her a bit overwhelmed.

So...she got back a major test yesterday. The entire class bombed it, but she really hit rock-bottom. It dropped her grade by about 8%. She had a 91% going into the test. Most of us would think, "Eh...83% is not that bad."

Well, in order to maintain the class valedictorian status, the 4.0 GPA is essential. She has 6 days of school left in this, her senior year...and suddenly has her first B ever.

Beautiful daughter rarely cries, but this has her feeling so worried and disappointed. Like she said last night, "I've been taking this course for an entire year. I've studied most nights until 2 a.m. Now, during my last week of my entire public school life, THIS happens!"

Her dad and I have never intervened in dealing with tough courses or tough teachers. Being a teacher in this district, myself, I've tended to be the one parent who stays out of it when it comes to my kids' needing support, which is how they've preferred it, actually. I feel so bad about not even attending their parent-teacher conferences, but there's really been no need, since they both ace courses and have no behavioral problems at school (we won't bring how they are at HOME into today's conversation...hee, hee!)

Anyway, Daughter and I discussed how her dad and I can support her in this venture. We've decided to meet with the school counselor to discuss the "pass-no-pass" option, even though the deadline for that option has passed.

We'll see what happens.....


Let the Sunshine In!

Spirits are soaring! Kids are leaping for joy! Cool breezes are filling the lab!
See, I work in the back portion of an elementary school computer lab. The building is 60+ years old and has no air conditioning nor insulation. When it's hot outside, it's really hot inside...especially in a computer lab with 41 old CPUs blasting out heat all day. Add an additional 35 little breathing, moving bodies and you're set for misery!

However, today the sun is shining...and the temperature is moderate.

I've noticed that children are happier little people at school when sunshine floods their classrooms and hallways. Heck, we teachers are happier little people, too!

Hooray for Spring in Oregon!


Sunday in the Garden!

The "Malory Kaye" iris is in full-bloom! They are from Collier's and truly are called my daughter's name!
After a few sprinkles...
This was my bike in college.
A few from inside my "secret" shade garden...looking out to the side yard.


She got SHOVED by a Dike!

Carnivorous Hippy was standing outside of "101," the new cool pub/bar/thingy in Corvallis, saying good-bye to Vita and me. We were chatting. A dike walked up, holding her girlfriend's hand. Rather than saying, "Excuse me, Ladies. May I walk by?" she put her hand on CH's shoulder and gave her a SHOVE! CH stumbled about and quickly droppd her head, doing all she could to appear completely submissive. Vita and I just looked at each other and started laughing. CH said, "I don't want to get in a fight...I'd lose."

We got into our cars and laughed our way away!

One "Unidentified Caller" Call I'm Glad I Took!

Taking my time getting off to work today...I worked late last night, so I feel no guilt about running late today.

While messing about with laundry, the phone rang. Caller I.D. indicated a toll-free number with "unidentified caller" text. Eh...what the heck. I'll answer it!

Good call. It was Target Visa Fraud Division, calling to let me know that there was "illegal attempted activity" on my card, which I haven't used in over a year, in Del Ray Beach, Florida! Charges were made at Office Depot, Rite Aid, Shell, and Sears. Sears are the good guys, as they noticed a glitch in the users identification and asked for additional info. The "purchaser" bailed at that time, leaving the store in a rush.



Just COULDN'T pass up stealing this baby!


Ready for Take-Off

Here are the photos from last night's prom. For me, it was not a good thing...conflict-filled and negative. However, she did "let" me take some photos prior to their dinner out...

Today is my son's 16th birthday. We took him to breakfast at one of our favorite breakfast joints, "The Broken Yolk" in downtown Corvallis. Then, as a family (I couldn't believe it!) we played Frisbee at Central Park for about 45 minutes, and headed over to Footwise to buy his birthday gift...his first pair of Birkenstocks!
My daughter, at "almost 18," has been difficult, to say the least. I'm ready for her to launch into the real world...and hopefully struggle her first hardships. Actually, I crave hearing her call me some night, saying, "Mom...I'm down at the police station with my friends. Can you come and pick us up?" The part I'm actually craving is my reply, "Gosh, I wish I could, but I'm pretty busy right now."



Damn our weird neighbors! Remember when you were 20 and thought you knew everything?
He drives down the road at 90...I repeat...90 miles per hour! He ties his big dogs up in the middle of the backyard so they bark and bark and bark. He uses the "f" word with his 6- and 2-year old kids! He drinks beer standing in the middle of the road, smoking cigarette and staring at us when we work in our yard. He rolled his truck a couple of weeks ago while speeding on a back road near Lacombe...and had his 2 little boys in the back seat! He yells at his dogs. He yells at his wife. He yells at his mother-in-law!
We were so spoiled before in this "neighborhood." Now, well, it's like living in town again...
Oh, and is there any connection to the fact that they live in a manufactured home?


In the Garden...Update!

These Wild Babes are called "Picasso!"
The ChokeCherry Bush is ready to burst!
Our newest garden path...made from Tree Cookies from OSU!
Front Yard scene. We just regraveled the pathways and seating area!


Eh...Not So Much...

We look so young! This photo was taken by my 5 year-old daughter, back when "Now-Hubby" and I were just dating! We were on his drift boat, fishing the day away!
I forgot how quickly I've aged! That's it...I'm changing my habits! No more ice cream! 30-minutes of walking each day! No more drinking beers with friends! Better hair color!


Do It Yourself Graduation Announcements!

Approximately $150 if ordered through the school.
Less than $30 done myself.
She leaves for Europe on July 6 and returns July 31.
Then, she leaves for Colorado College August 20.


Gonna Build that Chicken Tractor! Vote for One!

Against my husband's wishes, I've decided to build my dream home...a portable chicken tractor! (It's basically a coop that moves!) I'm stuck on the design I like most, so I've chose 4 pics of coops that caught my eye and need input.

Each pic has a number below it. Choose the one you like and give me a statement as to "why." I'll let you know what I decide, based on your input! Those who choose the tractor I select will win a prize from me, via e-mail! Tractor 1

Tractor 2
Tractor 3
Tractor 4


Choices, Choices...Sunny Days in Oregon

Because I work full-time as a teacher, mother, and wife, our house tends to become a series of piles on flat surfaces. We live out of the piles throughout the work-week, then spend Sat. and Sun. reorganizing the piles by putting things where they're supposed to go (clothes go into bedrooms, not closets/drawers, for example...close to the drawers and closets works for us).
However, when the sun comes out, our routine becomes very skewed.
Sun is something to be absorbed, not viewed.
So, rather than clearing up the interior of the house, I spent 11 hours OUTSIDE working in the gardens yesterday. I cleaned out the carport, built a new garden path, potted and planted new purchases, including a dwarf lilac and deep-hued hebe I bought from Morning Wood Nursery at our farmer's market, washed windows, emptied and cleaned my garden pond (which holds 200 gallons of agua...and I found 2 HUGE goldfish hiding in the muck! They'd made it through their 2nd winter!), refilled the pond (replaced the newly cleaned plants and fixed the fountain!), washed the car, hauled 7 wheelbarrow loads of mulch, weeded, on and on and on.

Which is where the choices part comes in.

I chose to work outside, rather than inside. The sun was irresistible! Because of my choice, the piles in the house will now remain as-is, meaning that it'll be a week of double-messy-house!

I need a housekeeper.


Mean Old Mama on a DVD Quest...

Watching the Corvallis JV LaCrosse game tonight.
I was standing on the sidelines, watching the action close-up.
This old woman with a digital camera steps over to me and says,"I'm making a video."
That's nice...

I said, "Do you have a son on the team?" (She looked old enough to be a grandmother, but I was trying to be polite.)
"No...I'm just making a video for the boys to watch."

"Oh, that's nice," I said. I turned back to watching the game.
She stepped closer, which was kinda weird, since we were done talking.
She said, "Don't say any bad things."
"Huh?" I replied.
"Well, your voice will be the dominant sound on my video, so I don't want you to say anything mean."

"I won't...I don't...my son is on the team. I'm cheering for him and his friends," I said, really feeling incomfortable.
She said, "Yeah, but you are cheering for the team and your voice will be on my video."

So...I politely stepped away, walking a good 20 feet down the sideline to get away from her.

She followed me!

She said, "If you cheer during the game, see, it will be on the DVD."
"I HEARD YOU,"I said. "You've made it clear."

She actually stuck her tongue out at me! She did! She stuck her tongue out! I then chose to walk to the other side of the field to watch the remainder of the game...and cheer for my son and his friends.