Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A Major Victory For Me

Tonight was the final touch in a major victory for me. You see, I'm a clutter bug, big time. I work at an elementary school, which doesn't leave me any time during the day to clean, and when I get home I'm usually exhausted or doing something else, so cleaning has taken a back seat. My home shows for it, and if you have seen it lately you'd know how big a victory the picture below is:

I had some motivation for getting the dining room table cleaned off: I had home teachers coming over and no place for them to sit in the living room. Yes, that will be another job to tackle, probably starting tomorrow.

Now, pray tell, what happened to the cans of Rachel's cat food I used to store on the table? I finally got rid of a bunch of cans of food that were old and no longer good anymore on the pantry shelving to make space for her food:

I have to tell you, though, getting everything organized so I could trash what I didn't need and clear the table off took longer than I expected given I ended up getting sick with the stomach flu midway through this little "project". The stuff behind and around it will need some shelving put up, it's my emergency preparedness stuff I keep next to the front door.

I even took the time to put some decorative touches on the table, from a table runner to my replica Faberge candy dish.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Dream A Little Dream of Me

Yes, I've been dreaming again. I don't know what I've done (or eaten for that matter) to warrant this, but the last three nights have been dream filled.

Last night I had a dream about an old friend who turned out to be more than a friend. He kissed me. Sparks flew. I awoke wondering if I was being shown who I would be marrying. I went to Church today with that thought in my head, and the Spirit gave me a feeling of complete peace, as if to say this was the message of the dream. I don't know where to go from here, because while I've tried to renew this friendship, he hasn't, mostly because his head is with his plants. He is a biology/botany teacher for high school students.

This afternoon was an unrelated dream, I dreamt I was at an Oprah camp to work on my music. I haven't worked on my music in so long, I wanted to do some things this past summer, but couldn't when Mom fell ill. Who knows, maybe this will be my music filled summer? I already have tickets to see Barry Manilow on two consecutive nights.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

New Twitter Parody

Have you guys heard about this? It's hilarious!

Trouble With Twitters

Yes, I am now twittering

Yes, I'm now all a twitter... check out the column to the right of my blog. :o) I will explain that I don't have the settings on my cell phone at this time, but I'm hoping to get a new phone over the summer. And yes, I'm following Oprah. Too fun!

Some Fantastic Ideas!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Something to laugh about...

Okay, so I'm home a little early from work. Here's just a part of my day.

For the last three weeks I've been recuperating from a gastro - intestinal infection (stomach flu), two rounds. Because of this, my doctor told me I had to be off the meds for two weeks after the "action" (for lack of a better word) had finished because the infection tears apart the inner lining of your stomach.

So, last night, it had been a week since I had my last "round", so I took 1/2 of my dosage of one of my meds. Unfortunately, I awoke feeling really loopy. This takes the better part of the day to wear off.

7:00 am: I went to school (yes, I drove) feeling somewhat loopy to a morning meeting (7:30 am) being held in my computer lab because the district IT (information technology) was providing some training for the teachers, so I had all kinds of people from the district (and the entire school staff) stuffed into my computer lab. The IT people came just as the meeting was supposed to start, but there was a survey I needed the staff to take, so I handed that to them, for the staff to work on while our guests set up. Because I had questions fly from both IT staff and school staff, it was pandemonium.

At 8:00 am I have to go outside and start my morning crossing guard duty. Because the campus doesn't open for students until 8:15, I have to hold people off across the street until then (which usually has at least one disgruntled parent angry).

8:45 am: The last of the stragglers who either walk or get dropped off finally cross and I can go inside the computer lab and changed from my crossing guard outfit to my computer lab outfit. But before I could do that, I had to answer a call from a teacher who couldn't get her internet working on her computer. Thankfully some of the IT people were still there (pushing updates remotely from the lab to teacher computers), so when my efforts didn't pan out, I took the laptop to them and had them show me how to fix that. After that, I assisted the IT people with getting the last of the computers updated, which involved a trip to the portables to get one of the computers up and running.

9:10 am: I'm finally able to change into the lab assistant outfit 25 minutes late. :o) I got a call from my endodontist, I had a root canal scheduled for 11:00, but it got changed to 10:30, which meant I would not be able to get students called into the lab for make ups on their NWEA testing. I was already running late, and the students wouldn't have been able to finish the test, so I decided to forgo the make ups until next week.

10:00 am: I explain to the Office Manager at the school that my appointment got changed so I was leaving to go to my appointment. This is so that she knows the lab will be closed until I get back.

10:30 - 11:30 am: I have a nice appointment with the endodontist (I'm not being sarcastic about this, he is very, very good and a really nice man to talk to). The rest of his staff are equally capable and wonderful as well. I highly recommend him if you need to have a root canal done.

11:30 am: I leave the endodontist and stop off at Dairy Queen for a milk shake. It's a tradition that my mother created, that I always get a strawberry milkshake from Dairy Queen (no one else will do) after a dental appointment. The only time I cannot do this is if I leave with stitches in my mouth. Otherwise I still keep the tradition going. :o)

12:00 pm: I arrive back at school and realize that I will probably not be able to last there for very long once the novocain wears off, so I go to the classroom of a teacher who had asked me to help her with a powerpoint presentation she is preparing. She's adding a video that she knew I had to the presentation. I go to her room and work while she's teaching measurement to her wonderful first grade students. Then I asked her the all important question, where does she have the video located on her computer? The answer? I don't have it. I knew you did, so I thought I'd have you help me get it. Do you see where this is going? I went back to the lab, got the video on my personal laptop that I bring to school and use (the school district seems to think I don't need a laptop to work off of), and used the bluetooth to push the video from my computer to my teacher computer in the lab. The teacher computer has a program called Apple Remote Desktop (ARD) that can control the other apple computers on the network, whether it be a computer on campus or on another campus in the district. I used this computer to push the video onto the teacher computer so I can finish what she needed.

1:00 pm: I finish making the first 3 slides for this teacher, including the slide with the movie on it. Yes, I said making the slides, because she hadn't started making the slideshow yet. I also found a picture for slide #2 that she had also indicated that she needed and inserted that for her. This is the reason why I haven't been stressing too much about whether I have a job next year, I figure as long as people are asking me to do these things for them, it's job security.

1:30 pm: I change back into my crossing guard outfit and do the afternoon crossing guard duty. This is one of those things that is different from corporate america: in public school, you not only have your job, but you also have extra duties assigned to you to do. Some people monitor the cafeteria during lunches, others have playground duty during recess, others handle needed work either before school or after school. Everyone does it, whether you are a certified teacher or a classified employee.

2:00 pm: I get paged to come to the office, to find this same teacher is facilitating the afternoon staff meeting and needs help setting up the projector and speakers. Usually when people need for me to do stuff like this, they give me some advance notice. On some things I need more advance notice than others (such as needing to bring my camcorder to record a guest speaker). I was almost shut down and ready to leave for the day, as by this time the novocain had worn off and I was in pain. It ended up being a good thing I stayed, as they needed to play a dvd and this teacher's laptop had not been set up to play a dvd. This requires administrative passwords that I don't give out, so they would have had to call the IT department to have it taken care of, but it was faster for me to do it. After assisting with a different powerpoint and the dvd movie, they no longer needed my assistance so I left and went home.

4:00 pm: I'm home and getting on the computer, after having fed Rachel, eating lunch and taking a pain med for my mouth, and could sense something itchy under my shirt. After scratching a few minutes I reached under my shirt to see if there was something there irritating my skin to find I had spent the entire day with a dryer sheet underneath my top. This has been a long explanation of my day, but for some reason, after all of the places I've been and people I've seen today, I just had to laugh that I had a dryer sheet under my shirt the whole time.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Gigot Sleeves

When I was in high school I had a blouse with gigot sleeves, and I absolutely loved that blouse. I wish they made blouses and dresses with this type of sleeve again.

Every Super Model's Dream, Right?

It's called Le Whif and is chocolate scented air, so you don't have to worry about calories and sugar intake. Knowing me, my brain would still mistake it for chocolate and I would get the same effect of those calories and sugar intake whether I actually ate something or not.


Tonight's dinner was provided by:

I had:

Italian Garden Salad (with Ranch Dressing)

Linguine Carbonara (with peas and bacon bits)

And I'm still trying to make room for:

A fresh melon salad.

I have discovered a new love, and it's at Alma School and University, called Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Grocery Store.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

I Had A Dream

Well, actually the ABBA song is I Have A Dream.

In this dream, I was waiting at the doorway to the Temple in a wedding dress, and telling complete strangers how I couldn't believe I was marrying again. I looked beautiful in a white gown with a short train on it, and I WAS HAPPY. The groom hadn't come yet, so I don't know who it will be, but the dream was wonderful.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

A New Perspective On The Stimulus Plan

This is from the Harvard Business School, the speaker is a Nobel Prize winning economist.

God May Not Bring You A Pot of Gold...

...but He still blesses your life with rainbows.

The End of The Rainbow

The Final Act of Easter

This picture symbolizes the final "act" in the fulfillment of prophecy, and part of the reason (the first part was in a previous post) of why we celebrate Easter. This is another of my favorite pictures.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Ben Bernanke

Do you know who Ben Bernanke is? What position he holds? If you don't, you might want to watch the videos:

Part 1:

Watch CBS Videos Online

Part 2:

Watch CBS Videos Online

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I Dreamed A Dream

Have you ever seen Les Miserables? Be sure to check this out, and grab a hanky for the video:

Parenting Info

For those with kids, there's some news you may or may not be aware of.

There are some "diaper wars" going on between Snuggies and Pampers, with Pampers opening up a blog for parents to post to.

Pampers Blog Listing

There are also books called "Bad Mother" and "Home Game", for those looking to vent about their parenting accidents. :o)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Fixing FEMA

If you've been reading my blog for a while, this will look very familiar to you.

Have you ever wondered why it is that the LDS Church is able to successfully evacuate people who are in the path of a natural disaster, while FEMA hasn't gotten things quite right yet? Have you ever wondered why FEMA isn't asking the same question?

Do you know where our local FEMA office is located? FEMA

How quickly do you think you could get relief from an office handling so many areas?

What I proposed a few years ago (and still do today) is to have more FEMA offices covering small geographical areas. Think of the Bishop's Storehouses/Welfare Centers of the Church. Now picture if there were barracks located around those welfare centers to handle mass housing for an evacuation.

What I am proposing is using closed military bases as FEMA Regional Centers/Evacuation Centers. They were already built to handle large numbers of people, complete with their own offices, PX (Grocery Store), Medical Facilities, Barracks (housing), as well as access to a power grid and utilities to handle the numbers.

When FEMA had bought a bunch of trailers for survivors of Hurricane Katrina, this is what I had planned: FEMA Evacuation Center.

Now I would do this, only without the trailers.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Education Reform Part 1

The reform I would like to address today is something I suggested to my school district regarding the use of a school campus that is closing at the end of this school year. Unfortunately, the idea was shot down, but at least it was heard.

The idea is this: turn the campus into a community education center. This would involve a college/university to lease space on the campus to hold college classes, but also with the provision that Adult ELL and GED classes would also be held on the campus. In-house day care and preschool would also be added for staff as well as students. Evening homework assistance/tutoring is also suggested, as well as guest speakers during the course of the semester to bring new ideas and thoughts to light.

There are multiple reasons for suggesting this:

1. Some people are a little intimidated about attending classes on a large campus. By using a smaller satellite campus this makes it less intimidating, plus helps to alleviate parking issues on the main campuses.

2. It would make the Adult ELL classes available during the day, which is not something you currently have in local neighborhoods.

3. A lot of people who have been laid off are wanting to attend college classes to add to their job skills and make themselves more employable. The problem is that the college/university campuses are overcrowded as it is, so where are these additional students going to go? By offering classes on satellite campuses, these help reduce the stress of finding classrooms for additional classes that will be demanded.

4. Adult ELL and GED graduates could then step up to the basic English 101 & 102 classes that could be offered on these campuses.

This would be a great opportunity to bring more people from low-income areas into an educational setting where they could get the education they need to improve their lives, unfortunately it looks like those opportunities are going to have to wait a little while longer.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Words From Elder Andersen

Here's a portion of the talk Elder Andersen, our newest Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ gave at General Conference.

Christ In Gethsemane

I wonder if the Savior ever feels like it was only yesterday that He suffered so much? In God's time (compared with ours), it probably was yesterday. How grateful I am that He was willing to go through this for all mankind.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Everest Expedition 2009

I don't know how many of you check out the other blogs I have listed on my blog, but there is one I'd like to point out. Michael Marin, who lives here in the Valley, is on the other side of the world and about to start his journey to climb Mt. Everest. This is a really challenging climb, there are people still getting killed attempting this, but more people are safely making it there and back every year.

Michael came and spoke to the students at Laird in early March, and he was so wonderful with the students. He is climbing the highest summit on each of the seven continents, and has already achieved five of those summits. It was a fascinating presentation.

My prayers and best wishes go to him, and I hope you'll invite your children to read and learn about what climbing Mt. Everest involves.

I've been downloading and watching Rest of Everest, which chronicles another climber's successful climb up Everest. It's a free podcast available via iTunes.

Here is Michael's blog: Everest Expedition 2009

Suze Orman on Oprah - Links To Help With Recession

Here is the link from Thursday's Oprah show which featured Suze Orman and answered a lot of questions on how the stimulus package may help you.

Oprah Winfrey Show

Gold Parties?

Have you seen ads on tv, the radio or the internet about having Gold Parties?

I had no idea there were people who spent that much money on "bling". I don't know about you, but I find this to be ridiculous, now it seems these gold parties are the "fashionable" thing to do.