Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I "Notebooked" Myself


So, I don't know if you've heard about getting "Notebooked" or not. Basically, it's when a girl asks a guy to watch a movie, then she puts in The Notebook, and as the movie proceeds, the guy gets all romantic and lovey-dovey. Yep, he's been "Notebooked." Anyway, so the other night The Notebook was playing on TV. For those who haven't seen it--shame! It basically is the story of a couple, then she gets Alzheimer's, then it ends with the lady remembering her husband, and they die together. I decided to watch it. I haven't been feeling very great, oh just about this whole month, so I've been doing a lot of laying around. Anyway, as the movie neared the end, I had to turn it off because I got so teary! You might be asking yourself why, so here it is. This year has been probably the biggest year as far as life changing for me and those around me. One of those people is my grandma, Grandma Wood. Last year at this time, she was driving, buying gifts, and hosting us for Thanksgiving dinner. She is the person who always remembers birthdays and special events. She's even cut things out of the paper and laminated them for me. She's so caring and loving. Well, basically throughout this year, my dear grandma has been diagnosed with end-stage Alzheimer's disease, possibly brought on so quickly from the stress of my grandpa's heart surgery last December. It's the weirdest thing because some days she'll call me by name and be really happy, and 10 minutes later she's wondering who I am and where she is. Then there's "Where's Grandpa?" when in fact, he's sitting next to her.I remember the first time I went to their house, and she didn't know who I was. I bawled all the way home. This still frequently happens after I visit (the crying). The saddest thing of all is that sometimes she is extremely aware of it. She's said to me, "Michelle, something is wrong with me. I can't remember where I live," and me telling her that she's sick, but we'll take care of her. I think I could handle it a little better if she didn't have these episodes of complete remembrance. I know that I am extremely lucky to have my grandparents in my life all these years. Many of my students have lost their grandparents this year. I think it's just a little bit of sadness at the loss of what I thought would be. I thought my grandma would be around to see me married and to see my babies, but I know realize that won't be the case. When I go to their house, I see all the little reminders of the grandma I know--her handwritten recipe books all lined up, her decorations for each of the seasons, cards, little notes. During this year, I've watched Grandma deteriorate significantly, and it makes me really sad. But I've also been able to spend some time with her and see that even though she's lost somewhere, her sweet personality and spirit still show through. That is a reason to smile. All of this came to my memory as I watched The Notebook, and I had to turn it off in fear of being a cry baby all night! (Mom, I told you no!)

The Foaming Brush

For a select few of us (you know who you are), this image of the foaming brush at the car wash brings back fond memories. It's amazing what a little time and a few quarters can do in cases of boredom! In high school, a few of my friends and I frequently went down to the local car wash. Of course, we only went when a car needed a desperate cleaning. Anyway, after inserting enough quarters to get the job done, we would always put in an extra at the end, or we just took advantage of the time remaining. Yes, we would leave the foaming brush running until the extra time was gone. Hey, at least we were paying for it. :) Something about the way the bubbles foamed so big and how they also smelled like Bubblicious bubble gum just seemed to give us a good laugh and brief moment of entertainment! I still think of this every so often when I am washing my car, and sooner or later, I turn the dial to the foaming brush and leave. :)

Friday, December 5, 2008

My Brother, the Airman

Here are some pictures of Kevin that we recently received in an email from the missionaries who are serving at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. It's so good to have any contact from Kevin. When you can't contact someone, it makes you miss them even more! I find myself having a greater sense of appreciation for our service men and women now that my brother is included in that group. I love his guts!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Blessings Abound

Okay, I started this on Thanksgiving, but time ran away from me . . .

I am thankful for . . .

*My wonderful and crazy family and the time I get to spend with them
*My girls--Kimberly, Tiffany, Shanley, Mitzi (in no particular order). Without them, my nights would be very boring!
*Wonderful friends who are always there to keep me laughing
*A wonderful, stable job that I love and the vacation time it brings
*The blessings of the gospel and my chances to serve those around me
* My grandparents--getting to really know them and enjoying their company
*The travel opportunities that I've had
*Beautiful music
*Cell phones--I love talking to my mom each day!
*My piano and being able to create beautiful music
*The opportunites I've had to go to school and get an education

Wow! This list could go on and on, so I will add to it as needed . . . Happy Holidays!

A Place to Sit

Every year, I think things will change. This year will be different. We're usually plus or minus a few people from the year before. But, alas, this year will be no different from many. Yep, it's true. I'm still stuck at the "kids" table on Thanksgiving. My sisters lovingly informed me that it's because I'm not married and blahbitty blah blah. Great. Why does that have anything to do with it? If I were married, what would we do? Draw straws? Base it on age? Being married doesn't automatically creat more space or chairs at the table. So, here I am at 25, sitting with the 14, 15, and 17 year olds, feeding the drooling toddlers and babies. Maybe someday the "kids table" will just morph into the "hip and young" table and the "adult table" will turn into the retirement table. Haa haa! Oh, I do love my family. I guess we're just getting to large to share a meal that requires sitting together! :) Wish me better luck for next year!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Who's the Favorite

Look at these cute boys! I bet you can't guess who their favorite auntie is . . .

Yeah . . . they make funny faces all the time!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

A Thousand Words

Krystle tagged me with this random picture post. 1. Go to your pictures2. Upload 4th picture in the 4th folder3. Post (explain?)4. Tag four friends.
So, here's my picture. I didn't know what it was before I posted it, because my pictures are just numbered. I'm lazy and usually just look a thumbnails. Anyway, this is Zoe on the day she was born. Fitting because today was Zoe's 3rd birthday! What a cute kid she's become . . . with just a little of the "terribles" on the way. I now tag Kristin, Misty, and my roomies.

Monday, October 13, 2008

A future Marilyn Monroe?

Holy Cow! I haven't written in over six weeks, and it's not for a lack of things to write about. Until my next post, here are some wonderful pictures of Zoe. Oh, Halloween. It can transform us into the rock stars of our dreams, or just give us five minutes of fun when shopping in the store . . . So, here's a before and after--A tribute to Halloween.

Friday, September 5, 2008

T-Shirt Poetry

I bought a T-shirt. I think it's funny. I'll wear it when I teach poetry. Without further ado:

Haikus are easy
But sometimes they don't make sense

If you're a grammar nerd, I know you appreciate that. :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Searching for My Match

So, a few of my friends finally convinced me that I should give online dating a try. I wasn't sure about that, but decided it couldn't hurt. So, after some consideration, I decided to try match.com. I decided to just fill out the profile and do the free trial, mostly because I don't believe I should have to pay to find love. Anyway, so I filled out the questionnaires which took longer than I'd expected. Some of those questions are mighty interesting! I completed my profile, and then I decided to search for a match. As I was filling out the requirements for my so-called "match," I wasn't too specific. In fact, I thought I was being really general. The only things I was specific on were religion, smoking, and drinking. That's a pretty broad group, or at least I thought. I hit that search button, just waiting for my matches to appear. As the screen read "Searching for matches," I thought to myself, "This could work. It might be easier than I thought." The search came back with the message, "You have no matches." It then said to try changing my criteria. Great. What does this mean? No matches? I hope this doesn't indicate future relationships. Geez. At least I did the free sign-up and didn't pay to be told that I'm not a compatible "match" with anyone. I think that's called therapy . . .

Monday, August 25, 2008

My Heart Beats for . . .

So, I was telling this story to my roomies, and they convinced me to write it for the rest of you to read.

I met this boy, we'll call him Mitch, at a singles activity up the canyon. We played ping-pong for quite awhile, exchanged phone numbers, and that was that. He called me a few days later, and we talked for awhile. He then proceeded to invite me to come donate blood at a blood drive that he was in charge of.

I was diligent that day--eating and drinking as one should if they are going to donate blood. It was nothing new, as I've donated blood several times. In college, ARUP used to call me to come donate because I have "baby blood," which apparently means I don't have an antibody to something, I can't remember. ANYWAY, so I this was not the first time I'd been pricked for a cause.

When I arrived, I filled out all the paperwork, chatted with Mitch, and waited. Then, they took my blood pressure and pulse. Blood pressure, check. It was fine. Pulse . . . well, this is where it gets interesting and a little bit funny. They said that I couldn't donate because my pulse was beating too fast. Yeah, it slowed down, but by then I was so embarrassed that I quickly took my stuff and left.

Moral of the story? Don't try to donate blood when talking with someone you potentially like. . .

Thursday, August 14, 2008

If Only They Could See Me Now . . .

I love my new apartment and roomies! It's one of the best living situations that I've had in awhile, minus one element: my piano. Those of you who know me best, know that I love to play that darn piano. I love it so much, I've paid to move it, store it, and move it again. Okay, so some of you are thinking, "Wait a second! I helped move that darn piano!" Yes, and I love you for it. But, I had to pay for 2 trucks now to get it moved. ANYWAY, I like it a lot! So, back to my story. I miss not being able to play the piano. It helps me relieve my stress on a crazy day. So, three times so far since I've moved, I've taken some time to go down to the storage unit, opened the door, and played that piano. Yep, right there in the storage unit. It actually has beautiful acoustics! :) The trick is not too go too early because it's so hot! The early evening is the perfect time. I'm sure many people have wondered if they are just hearing things or what. So, now you know how big of a dork I really am. I'm sure when my parents were paying for piano lessons, they never thought the obsession would go this far. If only . . .

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A Hot Day

So, the other day, I was in the copy room--making copies nonetheless. I wanted to make some overhead transparencies for fluency. I had a stack of my master papers, and I put them in the copier. I opened the cupboard, looked at the box and read, "Plain Paper Copier Transparencies." I took a stack, put them in the copy machine. No sooner had I hit the "Copy" button then I reached down to take out my copies, when half of a transparency came out. Yeah, that's not supposed to happen. . . I quickly turned off the machine, opened it up, and there, wrapped around the heating element, was half of a melted transparency. Looking back through the box, I noticed that someone had put their "extras" into the box, mixing them in with the regular ones. I proceded to pull out little pieces with my fingers, burning the tips along the way. Finally, the machine cooled down enough to where it hardened, which might not have been a good thing. The remaining pieces hardened and got stuck. I had to call the office, tell them I broke the machine, and they called the repair person. Before he came, the lady from the office and I tried one more time, with her trusty tweezers, to free the pieces. No luck. Thankfully, he was just across the street and came right over and fixed it. Yes, he was upset. No, he didn't know my name. :) It was fixed so quick that nobody ever knew what happened, but I was sure worried! In fact, here it is a couple weeks later, and I still haven't attempted to make tranparencies. So, until enough time has passed and it's funny enough to talk about with the other teachers, we are just secretly referring to this as "a hot day in the copy room."

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Student Surveys

I had my students complete a short survey where they were required to write a little information on their family, likes and dislikes, etc. When reading them, here are a few of the questions and answers that really made my day:

* My family members are: 35 and 36 (Mom and Dad)
* I like it when my teachers: are under 40 years old.
* This year I am ooking forward to learning about: Utah History (I replied: That's fantastic--but we're studying World History!) :)
* I like it when my teachers: reward me for doing what I'm supposed to be doing anyway.
*If I could change one thing about school, it would be: make recess all day, no work and no rules. and a second sheet said: to have recess all day long (I replied on these sheets that we would then have to call this a "vacation.").
*If I could change anything about the school, it would be: our room, because I want the classroom to be like a house.
*This year I am looking forward to learning about: water animals. (I have no idea where this came from . . .)

These are just a few of the funny replies that the students wrote. I also had the parents do a survey on their students. The answers are so honest, and they help me know my students even better. What wonderful kids! I have a feeling it's going to be a wonderful, although challenging, year.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Ah, sweet justice. Or something like that! Yesterday, I was subpoenaed to be a witness in a court trial for an accident that I was involved in. I had to be at the court house at 1:15pm in order to not be in contempt of court. Long story short--they kept moving the case back, and finally at 6:35, 11 cases later, they called the case. Then, there was a short recess, and the case was settled without going to trial. They just looked at me and said, "You're free to go." After sitting there all that time, that was it. Kind of ridiculous. They are giving me $18 for my time. I'm not even sure why they give a stipend! Anyway, I've enough court proceedings and trials than I ever want to see again!

The Ultimate Question

School started again yesterday, and so begins the daily ritual that is 6th grade. I have a great class! They are enthusiastic, hard working, and very funny. Today, after giving them time to discuss some get to know you questions in small groups, I let them have a short question/answer session with me. They asked the funniest questions. They wanted to know what my favorite foods were, where I had traveled in the past, who was in my family, what music I enjoy, if I was married or had kids, where I went to school, and my hobbies. Then, at the very end, this little guy said, "Ms. Husbands, can I ask one more question? Have all your dreams come true?" I smiled and told him not yet, but I'm still hoping they will. Kids say the darndest things!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

No Ma'am!

So, the other day I was at a store and the little girl at the register said, "Have a good day, Ma'am." I was kind of horrified. First of all, when did I go from being a Miss to a Ma'am? It sounds so old and grandma-like. I wasn't even wearing a house dress or rollers in my hair! Second of all, this little girl was not little--married and all she was--just very young. Do younger people automatically give this title to those who are older? I think being married is the cutoff for Miss--you automatically are a Mrs. and therefore should also be considered a Ma'am. Is there a certain age where one can no longer be called a Miss but must be a Ms. or Ma'am? I still feel young, and could be considered so, so for all purposes I'm fighting the movement! That's Miss Husbands to you! :)

Monday, June 23, 2008

Pimp Your Blog

So, for the last hour I've been trying to "Pimp My Blog" and have been very unsuccessful! Now, my blog just looks sad! I can't figure out where I went wrong in the code, but hopefully I will sooner than later. Hopefully I won't delete my whole blog either! Wish me luck!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Nonbuyer's Remorse

So, lately I've been trying to be a saver, not a spender. The whole concept is going quite well, except for one thing: Nonbuyer's Remorse. Now, we all know about Buyer's Remorse--that feeling of dread or disappointment after making a purchase and then realizing that whatever we bought is not living up to our (often unrealistic) expectations. Well, a few weeks ago, I saw these great shoes on sale. However, being the saver, I decided not to get them. Yes, they were on sale for $12 down from $50, and yes, they were super cute, but alas, just shoes. Now, I find myself wishing that I would have bought them. I've even gone back to the store, but they were gone. Oh, the disappointment of Nonbuyer's Remorse. Don't worry, this too shall pass. :)

Monday, May 5, 2008

The Saga Continues . . .

This song should be sung to the tune of “I Like Balloons.” I don’t know where this tune came from, but if you’re lucky enough to know it, take it away! Go, Krystle! (I think she taught me this tune, somewhere in my mind).

Oh, I love blue shoes
Oh, I love blue shoes
Oh, I love blue shoes
I love blue shoes

I love blue shoes
I ordered a ½ sandwich
And got a whole one
I love blue shoes

I love blue shoes
‘Cause they are comfy
And they are blue
I love blue shoes

Wearing those blue shoes
I got a deal on tires
Free is quite the deal
I love blue shoes

Oh, I love blue shoes
Oh, I love blue shoes
Oh, I love blue shoes
I love blue shoes

I love blue shoes
Sometimes they’re lucky
Sometimes they’re not
I love blue shoes

I love blue shoes
Through broken ankles
And 12 hour scenic drives
I love blue shoes
Oh, unlucky blue shoes
Oh, I love blue shoes
Oh, unlucky blue shoes
I love blue shoes

Yes, I know I’m ridiculous. And, yes, this is the end.

Bird Walking

The other day, Misty and I took a trip to Target to buy groceries. Located just down the road from my apartment, we decided to walk there and back (This decision was based on the fact that if we walked, we wouldn’t buy as much because we would have to carry it home). On our way, we passed a couple taking a leisurely walk. As we approached each other, Misty and I noticed that the man had a bird on his shoulder. It was a multi-colored bird, like a parrot, but smaller. It was just sitting on the man’s shoulder as the couple walked down the street. It looked as if they were turning and going into Starbucks located just on the corner.

On our way back from Target, we again passed the same couple. This time the woman was carrying the bird on her shoulder. What a funny sight! I don’t really understand the concept of taking your bird for a walk, but let’s just hope that they don’t run into someone “walking” their cat or dog! Good luck, bird walkers!

On second thought, I guess one could say that the bird was actually walking the humans. .


Silence—I want it! Sometimes I just love the sound of nothing. It seems that some days my life is so busy and noisy. Teachers talking, kids chatting, bells, whistles, traffic, and even the hum of a computer are all noises that I sometimes need to be rid of. So, on a night like this, I usually come home, close the blinds, and rest on the couch in the dark. Sometimes I read a book or listen to music. However, often times my sweet silence is interrupted by the roaring engine of a jet landing or taking off from Hill Air Force Base. The base, not even a mile from my house, is definitely not a bonus when it comes to looking for housing. The noise wasn’t that bad until about a month ago when flight patterns were changed. Now, if a jet flies by, I can’t even hear someone sitting next to me. The worst part is that the jets usually begin flying at ten or eleven o’clock at night. It’s insane. I sometimes think that because of this noise, rent should be cheaper in this area. Alas, it is not. I guess it’s as they say: Silence is Golden.

I Heart Quilts

I love quilts! Blankets, throws, quilts. No matter what word you use, I love those things that you wrap up in to keep yourself toasty warm at night. During college, I had no less than 7 layers on my bed at a time. Maybe this is because it was sometimes cold. Maybe it’s because I like the weight of the blankets on me, or maybe it’s because I’m ridiculous. Whatever the reason, I love them.
Some people may think having so many quilts is strange, but nobody ever goes without one when it’s cold, when we’re watching a movie, or when staying over. Maybe I have this need to feel prepared. Some people have a cannery in their basement. Others have 72 hour kits for the neighborhood. Me, I have oodles of quilts. Maybe they’ll come in handy if we have a disaster and for some strange reason everyone’s naked. ANYWAY, point being—I love quilts.
Here is a picture collage of all of the quilts that I own. Some of them I bought, others were given to me, and some were made by me. Enjoy, and always remember to bundle up!

The Write Obsession

So, I have an obsession with pens. Really, the obsession is with office supplies in general, but pens come right at the top of the list. This obsession is also common among a few of my family members, so I figure it’s an inherited thing. Ask Kevin or Michael where they are hiding their pen stash.

Why pens? I always am carrying a number of writing utensils in my pocket, whether it be a whiteboard marker, pencil, pen, or crayon (Hey, what do you expect from an elementary school teacher?). I transport them between my home, car, and class like they’re going out of style. Counting my classroom and apartment, I have no less than 8 containers that hold utensils of the writing kind. I know--it’s ridiculous!

Every once in awhile, I’ll go through them, throwing out the bad ones and keeping the good. But sometimes I save them because I think that they still could be good. It’s like I’m afraid of throwing away a pen. Funny thing is---sometimes no matter how hard I look, I can’t find one. For example, like when I’m at the bank trying to make a deposit. Everyone’s been there—digging around in your car or purse for a pen. It’s ridiculous!

My favorite type of pen is a blue ink then black. I hate red pens, and I really don’t care for colored ones either. With this obsession, you would think that I would have a set of really nice pens. Nope, not the case. I hate those, too. My favorite type of pen comes in a pack of 10 for .98 at Wal-Mart. Cheesy but true. They are ball point pens, medium, with blue or black ink. What can I say? They consistently write the best out of all the pens that I own. But for some reason . . . I can never seem to find one when I need it.

Ace of Cakes

I consider myself a pretty craft person, and as Rosie says, “Crafting and cooking are the same thing, just using different materials.” (Well, she said something like that on Rachel Ray the other morning). Some of my crafty adventures include quilting, painting, scrap booking, crocheting, and dabbling in oil pastels and watercolors.

More recently, I have decided to try my hand at making cakes. Now, these aren’t just your average out of the box cakes. Okay, yes they are, but with more bling. I’ve made a couple in the past that came out pretty disastrous. Well, this weekend I decided to make a cake to take to a BBQ in Logan for my Master’s graduation and Matthew’s (my sister Kristin’s husband) graduation.

I slaved over a hot stove for hours . . . or made cakes from a box (you decide), and put them together. Then, I bought everything I needed to decorate the top. Making cakes is expensive! When the cake finally came together, it was a masterpiece of perfection. Okay, okay. It wasn’t perfect, but looked eatable. So far in my cake-making excursions, it’s the best one yet! I’m no ace of cakes, but pretty close.

DID I MENTION . . . I left the cake at home. Yep, right there on the counter. I was too far away when I remembered. So, my friends and I enjoyed cake later that week . . .

Blogorrhea--Diarrhea of the Blog

This is just to say
I'm sorry
For the the sudden, quick blogs

I've been saving them up
for when I have internet access

No apologies . . .
They are so funny
And in some way, meaningful.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

U G _ Y

I want to make note of something that was recently pointed out to me by my friend. Very often, towns or cities will paint a letter on a hill to recognize a sports team, high school, college, or city. Now, with that knowledge in mind, let's check out the Wasatch front.

I often find myself driving along this stretch of I-15, and now I only think of one thing: U G _ Y.

Starting in Salt Lake, we have the U on the mountain which of course stands for the University of Utah Utes. Traveling further south we then next see a G on the mountain for the town of Pleasant Grove (at least I think that's what it's there for). Finally, in Provo we come to the home of Brigham Young University, which displays its school pride with the Y. And so, in that order, from North to South we have the letters U G Y.

Now, all that needs to be done is for the town of Lindon, located just south of Pleasant Grove, to add an L to the mountain. Yes, we would have UGLY spelled out along the mountain range for all to see. It's probably no coincidence that this hasn't been done already.

Just a little trivia for your thoughts today--and every day that you're making that drive along I-15.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Unlucky Blue Shoes

This is the story of the unlucky blue shoes . . .

I saw them in the store and was instantly attracted to their suede and corduroy shell. Trying them on sealed the deal; they fit my feet like a good, comfortable pair of socks. The blue tennis shoes of my dreams. Little did I know . . .

While wearing the blue shoes at Lagoon, I had a misstep and all but broke my ankle. Wearing a boot for six weeks is definitely not good luck, and so they became the "unlucky blue shoes."

Now, I was willing to give them another try, so I wore them while hunting for trilobites in the west desert of Delta. While there, I slipped two times, bruising bones, causing knees to bleed, and basically injuring all four of my limbs. I blamed it on the shoes.

However, the other day while wearing the blue shoes, I did have a bit of luck. While at the tire store, I was able to get two of my tires fixed for no cost. That's definitely lucky! My past history with car repairs has been anything BUT lucky. So, I figured that the unlucky blue shoes were working their way back to being just the "blue shoes," no bad luck attached.

This weekend I went camping with a friend to Capitol Reef. She wanted to go on a "short drive to see the scenery and the places marked on the map." Although I wanted to go on a hike, I agreed to go and see what beautiful wonders of erosion that Capitol Reef had to offer. Well, to make a LONG story (and I mean long) short, here's what happened.

We ended up missing the turnoff for the road, and had to backtrack about 34 miles. The road was very rough, and it took us until almost 5:30 to get to the end of the loop. Just as we came around the bend (about three miles from the main road), the road ends and we see--yes, a river! The road has been taken over by a river. So, we had to get back in the car and drive the 54 miles back the other way. Not a big deal, but when you're so close, as we were, and had been driving since 10 that morning, it was very depressing. Upon seeing the river, Misty said questioningly, "Where did the road go?" while I cried, "Noooo! Look. The road's over there." Anyway, so we ate a few cookies, had a debate whether to ford the river or not, and turned around. 3 1/2 more hours and several closed roads later, we were finally back to the main road. As we were driving back to camp, Misty says to me, "Michelle? What shoes are you wearing?"

Yep, you guessed it. Unlucky blue shoes!

Better luck next time . . . OR remember to read the signs.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Who is This FICA Guy?

So, I can honestly say that sometimes I'm appreciative of taxes--like when you come home froma month in Peru to paved roads, freeways, parks (ones that you can actually walk on the grass), etc. However, at a time like this, yes--Tax Season--I find myself asking--Who is this FICA guy, and why is he taking all my money. Taxes are just frustrating and one more way to get even yet more money out of a person. Who knew that a grant would be taxed . . . That's supposed to be like free money. "Free money" doesn't exist, I guess. Just another punishment for attending graduate school. I consider myself a bright person and have filed my taxes by myself individually, but this year I just became a little overwhelmed with all the paperwork, so I decided to use TurboTax. About 2 hours later . . . and let's just say a lot of disappointment. I think I'm going to take a tax class and start saving EVERY receipt in order to get all the deductions possible. Oh, and one other thing while I'm on the tax rant--check out this website and see just how much our government wastes each year. Yep, those taxes--that 33 percent of your hard earned moolah--hard at work, again. http://www.cagw.org/site/PageServer?pagename=reports_pigbook2006 . Here are a few of my favorite ways that my tax dollars are being spent:
"$450,000 added by the House for plantings on the eastern front of the Capitol. This will allow members of Congress a chance to “stop and smell the roses” before they proceed with plunging the country deeper into debt."

"$950,000 for a parking facility at the Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, Nebraska. The museum, built by the wife of prominent businessman George Joslyn, profits from donations, as well as $7 tours, $25 lectures, $45 memberships, and $220 art classes."

"$300,000 for the Oquirrh Institute. According to the Institute’s website, “The Oquirrh Institute was founded in Salt Lake City, Utah, during the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. The Institute's mission is to shine early light on public policy dilemmas and establish innovative solutions. The Oquirrh Institute is currently involved in four areas of concentration: Moving to Competency-Measured Education, Improving Environmental Management, Advancing Health Information and Research and Enhancing Governance Through Technology.” According to USDA testimony, “The principal researchers have not yet determined a completion date on this project.” A total of $500 has been raised from corporations and foundations. Taxpayers have “contributed” $550,000 to Oquirrh since 2004."

I hope that the Oquirrh Institute can research better ways to spend our taxpayer dollars. Until then, I will say goodbye. I'm done with my rant on taxes and must finish getting them mailed and filed. Until next time, remember to "manage your money, or it will manage you."

Saturday, April 5, 2008

My New Favorites

These are a few of my favortie things . . . or I guess you could say favorite people! Here is little Axton Fifield sleeping away.

The baby boy cousins together. Dante and Axton take a rest on Grandma's bed. Dante is 3 weeks old and Axton is about 7 weeks old.
Here's Dante sitting on my lap, taking a nap. I think I have a picture exactly like this of Zoe when she was a baby.
Zoe is so good to Dante. She is so sweet with him and loves to pat his head and kiss him.
Here is Zoe holding her eggs she found on the Easter egg hunt. What a cutie!

Zoe and Dante posing for a picture for me. This was a good one!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Money, Money, Money

Yes, money is a motivating factor in just about everything that we do in life. It may be sad, but it's true. This week I got a roommate. Why? To save money. I think in the long run that it will be good. It's only for a few months. I think that overall, roommates are good--you know, it's all that sharing that goes on and teaches us to be more patient people--but sometimes the thought it just overwhelming. It's hard being a single girl in the city! Such is life. This has been a crazy couple of weeks. I've been interviewing around Salt Lake and Davis school districts, finally deciding to take a job at Syracuse Elementary (in Syracuse) teaching 6th grade. It will be a challenge, but I believe it will be worth it. Syracuse is a year-round school and I will start teaching on July 21. I will be rotating classrooms every 9 weeks with the other teachers as we go on/off track. However, I will have from Thanksgiving to after New Year's Day off, which is a definite bonus. Also, I will have an hour of prep time each day with a classroom aide. Right now, it sounds fabulous. Why did I change? Well, there are many various factors . . . one being money. :)

Goodbye . . . Hello

Goodbye, Dee . . . Hello, Syracuse!
Goodbye commuting, hello short drives
Goodbye traditional, hello year-round
Goodbye 3rd grade, hello 6th grade
Goodbye tattling, hello hormones
Goodbye South America, hello Mesopotamia
Goodbye no-walled school, hello own brick room
Goodbye no time, hello prep time
Goodbye old friends, hello new friends
Goodbye Dee Dolphins, hello Syracuse Stingers

Thursday, March 20, 2008

They're Crazy, They're My Family, and I Love Them!

Here is the most recent photos taken of the family. We had these taken in October, right around Zoe's second birthday. We then gae these to all the parents for Christmas. Group Picture: Back row: Scott, Michael, Sean, Kevin; Tony, Jennifer, Zoe, Michelle, Kristin, and Matthew

Just the Boys . . .

And the girls . . . (and unborn boys)

Zoe's two year old pictures

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Life with Zoe

I've never watched so many "Dora the Explorer" episodes in my life!

Tomorrow starts my week of Spring Break from elementary school, and believe me, the teachers need it just as much as the students! Yesterday, Mom and I drove down to Richfield and visited with Jenni, Tony, Zoe, and baby Dante. The baby is growing so fast, but is still as little as can be. He is such a cutie! After we had lunch, Zoe came back to American Fork with us. Mom and I are going to watch her for the week. It's been fun so far, but she's a little demanding (being almost 2 1/2 and all). We've been potty training her, (only 2 accidents in 2 days!), playing her favorite game--The Fishy Game--and watching her favorite show, the aforementioned Dora. I can understand why Jenn goes a little crazy sometimes. The Dora chant is now permanently embedded in my mind. I think the DVD will soon be "broken," if you know what I mean.

The weather here is crazy. Zoe spent a little time with uncle Scott at the park, but the snow and wind are now coming down extremely hard. March is sure coming in like a Lion this year!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

First Instincts

My first instinct when creating this blog was to "back blog," but decided against it. I can hardly keep up with everything that is going on without having to remember and write about what happened days, weeks, or months ago. However, I may still be guilty of backblogging in the future.
The signs of spring are definitely here--snow melting, birds singing, and babies, babies, babies! On February 4, Kristin and Matthew became the proud parents of Axton, followed by Jenni and Tony with baby Dante on February 29 (He's our little Leapie!). Two babies added to our family is such a wonderful blessing. I'm looking forward to spending more time with them and getting to know their little personalities.
One other major sign of Spring--Spring Break! I'm looking forward to both a break from teaching and a break from graduate school. Now, don't worry because I'll be plenty busy tending, playing, shopping, and having a good time with little Zoe. She's 28 months, going on 13 years. She's such a cute little diva. :) I'm sure we'll have a fabulous time while her mom rests and takes care of the new baby.
Until another day,