One of the challenges in education today

I’ve recently learned how to imbed youtube videos in my blog.  I know you’re impressed.  Well get impressed with this!
Is your mind boggled? 
My principal found this quote.
“The illiterate of today are not those who can’t read and write, but instead those you can’t learn, unlearn, and relearn.”
The times, they are a changin’
Is it good?
Or not?
Remember The Shawshank Redemption.  Oh, it’s one of my favorites.  The old man Brooks gets paroled  after spending most of his life in the penitentiary.  He writes this letter.
“Dear fellas, I can’t believe how fast things move on the outside. I saw an automobile once when I was a kid but now they’re everywhere. The world went and got itself in a big damn hurry. The parole board got me into this halfway house called “The Brewer”. And a job bagging groceries at the Foodway. It’s hard work and I try to keep up but my hands hurt most of the time. I don’t think the store manager likes me very much. Sometimes after work I go to the park and feed the birds. I keep thinking Jake might just show up and say hello. But he never does. I hope wherever he is he’s okay and makin’ new friends. I have trouble sleepin’ at night. I have bad dreams like I’m falling. I wake up scared. Sometimes it takes me a while to remember where I am. Maybe I should get me a gun, an, an rob the Foodway so they’d send me home. I could shoot the manager while I was at it, sort of like a bonus. I guess I’m too old for that sort of nonsense anymore. I don’t like it here. I’m tired of being afraid all the time. I’ve decided not to stay. I doubt they’ll kick up any fuss. Not for an old crook like me.

[carves “Brooks was here” into wood. Admires his work for a moment. Then kicks out the table beneath him and hangs himself]

Yes, the world went and got itself in a big damn hurry.

The spooks are out

We had a vocabulary parade at school today.  Never heard of it huh?  Well in honor of our visiting author (my favorite day)  Debra Frasier,, we had a vocabulary parade.  In Debra Frasier’s book, Miss Allaneous, they have a parade of words where each child dons a costume depicting the meaning of a word.   Our principal is a word connoisseur and decided that this would be just dandy.  She also thought that all the lady teachers should pick mis words and the male teachers should pick mister or sir words.  Are you following me?  We only have two male teachers, so they chose mystery and surplus.  Very clever.  My word was misnomer.  I thought it worked well.

A bit disheartened that you can’t see my tail here.  I should’ve been holding it.
Here’s another teacher as Mischief.
It’s also been Red Ribbon Week.  All the kids vow to be drug free and dress crazy.  Makes no sense, but that’s what we do.  Here’s Ashlynn on Crazy sock day.


I’ve had pumpkin guts under my fingernails and up to my elbows today while carving a jack-o-lantern.
Here’s a funny work story.  You’ll find this in the faculty restroom.  I’ll let the picture speak volumes.
Halloween week…that’s all I have to say about this.

Beauty of October

October’s Party

George Cooper

October gave a party;

The leaves by hundreds came-

The Chestnuts, Oaks, and Maples,

And leaves of every name.

The Sunshine spread a carpet,

And everything was grand,

Miss Weather led the dancing,

Professor Wind the band.

The Chestnuts came in yellow,

The Oaks in crimson dressed;

The lovely Misses Maple

In scarlet looked their best;

All balanced to their partners,

And gaily fluttered by;

The sight was like a rainbow

New fallen from the sky.

Then, in the rustic hollow,

At hide-and-seek they played,

The party closed at sundown,

And everybody stayed.

Professor Wind played louder;

They flew along the ground;

And then the party ended

In jolly “hands around.”
I borrowed (stole) this poem from another blog I read.
She has a great little blog about photography, knitting, and her family.
Hope you’ve had a Happy October!


My favorite sister Jolea, well my only sister Jolea, well my only sister period.   BUT, she’d still be my favorite if I had more to choose from. 
She looks like a little eskimo here, and a darlin one at that. 
Let’s rub noses, like the Eskimoses.”
She has a way cooler name than me.  She used to spell her name like this: Joley, but now spells it like this: Jolea.
This was when she was Joley.
And this was when she was va-va-Joley. (insert eye brow raising and pouty lips here)
 Don’t you love the sexy watermelon shirt??  I believe that was sponge stamped.  All I know it it had to be very cool for her to be wearing it.
She probably knows more about me, no I take that back, she definately knows more about me than any other human being on Earth.  The blackmail she could use against me….oh I shudder to think. 
“More than Santa Claus, your sister knows when you’ve been bad and good”~ Linda Sunshine
She has been with me through lots of times,
 the good and the bad.
Like two year old tantrums,
  and bad perms. 
 But she’s never left my side. 
She’s a smart, beautiful person and I’m lucky to have her as my sister.
Did I say smart?

Yeah, I thought so.

Auntie Blog: For the love of blue goo

Flarp, flubber, slime, goo, gak, or oobleck.  Whatever you call it, it’s fun stuff (if you’re a kid).

Ashlynn spent her Sunday elbow deep in this stuff.
This is supposed to be a butt.  I know, I know.
Like the taste of oobleck? Blech!
Gotta keep her head back or it will run into her mouth.
Good thing her nose is clean!
And now you know why it’s a good thing her nose is clean.
And if you would like to blow blue gak bubbles with your nose, here’s how…

Mix thoroughly
1 1/2 cups very warm water
2 cups Elmer’s glue
food coloring (optional, as could stain clothing and skin)
In a separate bowl, mix thoroughly:

1 1/3 cups very warm water
2 level teaspoons Borax

Mix the contents of the two bowls together kneading until it is fully combined. Discard any remaining liquid.

My Crazy Mom Part I

All my life my mom has warned me of the highly possible chance that I may end up in a mental institution.  A matter of fact, I think she has told me twice this week.  She thinks I’m nuts.   I blow her off.  My mom on the other hand, thinks she’s sane.  I asked her if she realized that when I do end up in a mental institution, they will blame her.  I mean can’t we always blame our moms for screwing us up??  It seems to be catching on in society these days.  This sign is currently taped to my mother’s front door.

I’ve always wondered if crazy people know they’re crazy.   She said come back next week and it will say “Do not disturb, I’m disturbed enough already!”  I guess that answers my question.

Till the cows come home

I don’t think cows are too smart, but what do I know.
I have noticed, however, like any animal, when it comes to eating, they pay attention.    
Cows do recognize the feed wagon.  I can pull through a pasture in my vehicle, which is not the feed wagon, and they casually look up at me, give me the once over, and get back to eating.  When Jason rumbles in there, their ears perk up and they start a’comin.

 Jason is a good cowboy. He makes sure they get fed. He makes sure they’re all accounted for. He checks for runny noses and other ailments.  He has a siren on his truck.  They can hear him if they’re too far away and can’t see him. When they hear the siren sound, they come a’trottin.  Now, if he’s being very impatient, he’ll drop a load or two of cake (that’s cow food for you dudes out there). When they hear the door to the cake feeder slam, they come a’runnin.  Most don’t dawdle when it’s supper time. 
They get there and wait for their groceries. 
Some stare at you.
Feed me now!!
Some beller at you.
Today he was south of town feeding some steers.  He rumbled through the gate and spotted them.  He blew his siren, they took notice, and came a comin’.  And right there, right in the smack dab middle of the herd,  mingling amongst all the steers, were two goats! 

Red goats!!! 
Red goats with little nub horns!!!!
They must’ve been cows in their former lives because they got in the cake line and helped themselves.  Most of the bovines ignored them and went about their business eating. But a few calves did not appreciate these welfare cases.  They head butted over cake.  Not sure where these univited guests journeyed from.  I asked Jason to get me a picture if he can.  Until then, here is a very tame cow eating a piece of cake from Jason’s hand.

This is a cake line.  Jason has to drive past, count, and eyeball them before they finish eating and scatter.
Yes, this is where your hamburger comes from.  Enjoy!

Sometimes I just can’t say it right

On my birthday, Jason got me this card.

It was perfect.  

I wrote on the back My favorite card! 2009
It’s a little story of us.

It reminds me of Anacortes, WA. 
It reminds me of a happy life.  One to look back on and have zero regrets.  Remembering good times, and relishing the reward of a well-lived life.

Do you know how much I love pie?  Maybe I love this card because of this blueberry pie line.  What if it had said lemon cake?  Would I still be as fond?  Doubtful.

Maybe I’m drawn to the quintessential picket fence in the picture.  I’ve always wanted a picket fence around my house.  But I’d settle for a split rail fence, whatever.  I even want to hop on the bike with its banana seat and ride down that cobblestone path.
It’s obviously Autumn in this card.  The best season of all.  The trees dress in glorious color. The smell of the ocean drifting on a light wind.
No hurry.  No rush. 
I hate the pace of life.  I know hate is a strong word, but it just sums it up for me.  I run in 5th gear 90% of the time.  I’d prefer second or even third.
Relaxing in the comfort of a lifetime of companionship. 
And I’m sure the couple in the car (without gray hair even though it’s years and years from now) love talking to one another, never fight over the radio, never get lost, or aren’t prone to fits of road rage.  Sure.

This card makes me smile.
Monday was Jason’s birthday.  I stood in the aisle studying the greeting cards.  Which direction should I go this year?





Then my eye caught the one.  The perfect card.  It tells of my hopes.  And dreams, my desire for a slower pace.  And my love of pie.  Yep, I got him the same card. 
It just says it all for me.

I remember when…..

Today is October 17.  It’s Saturday.  I’ve had my walk, I’ve said my prayers, I’ve started my chores.  I sat at the desk and turned the calendar that belonged to Grannie Silcott for today and found that I had written she died five years ago today. 

And then emotion overcame me. 
This is one of my prized possessions.  A picture of her as a young girl.  One time I lost my temper and threw my checkbook.  I didn’t mean to hit this picture, but I broke the glass, so it has been replaced, but the picture and frame are older than mud, as my niece Hannah might say.
This is written on the back of the picture.  It says “To Angel my precious granddaughter, given this Christmas Dec. 25, 1999.  I was 17, I saved money to buy this dress, which cost 20 dollars, that was a lot of money then.  Now I am 93 my birthday will be May 29, 2000.” 
She was born in 1906, so it would have been 1923 when this picture was taken.  She lived through some tough stuff. 
Wow, that’s about all I can say.
“She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.  She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue.  She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.  Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:  Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.  Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.  Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.”  Proverbs 31:25-31

Believe me when I tell you…..

There’s a few things that I can do fairly well. I can cook a decent steak (except tonight when I burned them), I can get ready in under 30 minutes if the need arises: shower, make-up, hair, the whole kit and caboodle (that’s pretty good for a woman); and I’ve been known to win at thumb wrestling a time or two.  And naturally, there’s a few things I can’t do.  I can’t snow-ski and can live the rest of my life just fine if I never wear a pair of snow skis again, I can’t sing,  yodel, or take a non-blurry picture as my blog can testify,  and  I can’t grow a pumpkin patch.  I just learned about the pumpkin thing yesterday.  It started way back in the spring, maybe even last winter.  I wanted to have pumpkins this fall. I ventured to Wal-mart and bought a couple packets of seeds.  I pulled weeds out of my little patch of a garden.  I plowed with an antique plow, and me and my niece Ashlynn planted pumpkins.  We even tried to build those little hills it talks about on the back of the seed packet.  We planted and we talked about our plans for these pumkins.  Oh, the dreams we had of carving, painting, and cooking pumpkins.  Maybe we’ll sell them out of the back of my Ford Escape and make a couple bucks.  There were certain people who questioned the timing of my sowing.  “Isn’t it too late to plant pumpkins?” they inquired. The packet said they need 92 days or maybe it said they need 102 days.   I was cutting it close I knew, but I had good faith.  A few days passed.  They sprouted.  Yippee!  A few more days, they put on some leaves.  Things were looking hopeful.  No, I didn’t water them.  It’s fall, I figured they didn’t need much water.  Nope, I didn’t weed them.  Still, they perservered.  A few more days and they put on flowers.  The pumpkins were coming next.  I just knew it.  I told my class I had a pumpkin patch.  I’d bring some to my classroom.  We’d do a whole pumpkin unit.  We’d measure the circumfrence, circumfrance, how big around they are, we’d guess the number of seeds inside, we’d carve, we’d paint, we’d roast pumpkin seeds and eat the salted devils.   More days were crossed off the calendar.  Still no pumpkins.  They’ll be here by Christmas, I convinced myself.  Who says I can’t decorate the Christmas table with pumpkins?  A few more days passed, and a cold spell descended on the golden spread.  It drizzled for days.  We brought in the potted plants.   We brought out the heavy coats.  We lit the fireplace. I never thought about the pumpkins.  It’s fall for Pete’s sake.  (Do you ever wonder who Pete is?)  They are pumpkins.  This is their time to shine.  This is October for crying out loud!  I checked on them yesterday.  They are withered, lifeless vines with curled up leaves.  I guess pumpkins like the cold and drizzle about the same as a daffodil would.  I guess pumpkins need water about the same as a lily does.  I guess I’ll have to go to Wal-mart if I want to carve, paint, or measure a pumpkin this year.  On the other hand, I guess I don’t want a pumpkin that badly.
My pumpkin patch when it needed watering.  And some sort of white rot on the leaves.
My pumpkin patch on a good day, maybe.  It doesn’t look terrible here does it?  Just a bit wilted.  Wouldn’t you think I’d at least have one pumpkin to show for all my hard work???
My pumpkin patch when it needed weeding.  I won’t even go in there.  There is a giant hole that some critter made in there.  God only knows!  That’s why I take pictures through the fence.  Hey, yeah that’s my excuse for not watering or weeding.
The hole some critter made that had me and Ashlynn running to the house.  It’s about 2 feet deep. We couldn’t help but envisioning something with huge fangs and sharp claws attacking us as we crouched down to take a better look. 
May your life be more fruitful than my pumpkin patch!

 Have a great night!