Archive for January, 2010

29
Jan
10

is it bad when

you think that eighth graders have the capacity to be VERY funny? And then, in that same moment try to keep a straight face when they make a hilarious, but definitely inappropriate for class, joke. And then in that same moment, try to discipline them for that same joke which has me laughing  inside. That is one of my favorite things about my students. They are ridiculously funny. And they are funnily ridiculous. And I get to watch them everyday. The hard part is trying not to laugh myself. 

**Note: Eighth graders love the Jersey Shore (which I don’t watch), and a lot of them love the Office (which I do watch), and they love the Hangover (which I think is hilarious), they listen to and admire Lady Gaga (catchy music, but come on…), and Twilight (of course).  That is what make them so funny. All of these elements are strange and entertaining and laughable in their own  right. Middle schoolers love this stuff. Plus today, they asked me if my lava lamp had real lava in it… need I say more?

21
Jan
10

waiting

So, these people are sort of like friends of friends… but I do not know them… I kind of wish I did… I actually saw them on CNN last week after the earthquake hit Haiti. The synopsis of their story is this: They are waiting to adopt their son from Haiti at the moment. They have been in process for a while. They have three other children as well, one of who is from Haiti. How difficult it would be to know that your child was across the ocean in a place that has been hit so painfully hard by calamity? And to feel helpless and have no choice but to wait?

Aaron Ivey, the father, just released this music video that tells the tale of the waiting for and the love for this child of theirs.

Watch and browse through his site when you get a chance. 

21
Jan
10

what is wrong with people?

I came across this today online:

http://www.boycotthouston.com

Need I say it again? What is wrong with people?

Although I will say that this whole thing is ridiculous, I did enjoy the hilarity of one section of the website. Here they are explaining the ways in which Houston should be officially boycotted.

What you can do to help:

  1. If you take a vacation, do not take it in Houston.
  2. If you drive through Houston, do not buy fuel, food, or stay in a hotel there. Spend your money in one of Houston’s outlying suburbs.
  3. If you fly, arrange connecting flights so as to avoid lay-overs in Houston. If this cannot be avoided then spend no money at the airport.
  4. If you shop online, find out the location of the company who’s website you are browsing. If the online store is based in Houston, go to another website.
  5. If you have relatives in Houston, try to get them to come visit you rather than you visit them.
  6. If you are considering a business convention, do not consider Houston.
  7. If you are planning a business or professional conference, plan it somewhere other than Houston.
  8. If you are considering hiring a contractor, do not hire one based in Houston.
  9. If you are searching for employment, do not accept a position in Houston.
  10. If you are seeking investment opportunities, look at opportunities elsewhere.
  11. If you live in Houston, shop in an outlying suburb whenever possible.
  12. If you are considering a service ( cell phone, internet, cable TV, etc) do not use one based in Houston.
  13. If you need to ship something, do not use Houston’s ports.
  14. If you are starting a new business do not open it in Houston.
  15. If you are considering expanding your business no not expand in Houston.
  16. If you live in Houston and you have considered moving, now is a good time.
  17. If you need a medical procedure and it does not endanger your health, go to another city.
  18. If you want to buy a newspaper, do not buy a Houston paper.
  19. If you need insurance, do not buy a policy from a company based in Houston.
  20. If you are a sports fan do not watch Houston’s teams or spend money on their team’s apparel or products.

And there you have it, apparently doing these things will convert? or perhaps punish the inhabitants of this God forsaken city.

P.S. There was a write up on this site in the Houston Chronicle.

04
Jan
10

I love those signs

Ok, so I have been dying to blog about this. I think my husband is dying for me to blog about it even more. I will not shut up about it every time I see it. It is just one of my “things.” 

You know those signs that they post in front of churches? or schools? or real estate offices? They are the signs with a white background on which you can place black letters. Churches are notorious for writing ridiculous things on those signs. And then they  can write something that is touching, or thought provoking, or possibly prophetic. I love those signs. I mean I really love them.

My school has one of those signs. Every week, twice a week, a volunteer comes and changes the message on the sign. Someone tells them what they want the message to be, and voila! the message is changed. It is a beautiful thing.

One of my local churches, a church that always seems to know what to put on the sign, has removed their white sign with black letters. In its place, they have installed ————————————————————————————– I can hardly deal with it ———————————————- an electronic/digital sign. It is almost like blasphemy to me. Seriously. I am not being dramatic. I think this new sign is awful. I can’t even look at it. It is multicolored and the print moves. And the worst part of it, is that someone sits inside at a keyboard and types in whatever they want that sign to read. No need for volunteers. No need for collaboration. Just a sign that costs more, moves more, and all the while, in my opinion will be read less.

I think I really do hate those signs. 

But the signs I love are the ones with the white backgrounds and the black letters, where if they are up really high, a person has to use a pole to put the letters in place. 

I love what they represent. I love that they take work to change. I love that someone has to work a little harder to get their message read. I love the way that they in a small way, represent to me, not only freedom of speech, but the necessity of community to accomplish even the smallest task.

I think these signs might be disappearing. I seriously need to think of what I can do. I love those signs.

04
Jan
10

summary

I can’t believe it is over. The Christmas season has come and gone. Time really does fly when you are with those you love, caring for them and enjoying them. We had a really nice holiday… aside from the usual life hiccups that come. Here are a few of the highlights of our break:

-Davy and I just loved being off together. 16 days without work with us and the kids.

-Ben battling something really nasty. Went to the dr. – ear infection – but after 6 days running substantial fever and having all the symptoms, we diagnosed him ourselves: swine flu or flu. He is fine now.

-Davy and I celebrated our anniversary (#9!) early by staying at a hotel here in Houston and enjoying a childless night filled with Christmas shopping and just being together.

-Dinner with 12 of my good friends at our house. Davy and I had a really good time planning and preparing and hosting. I love those girls.

-Christmas eve and day with the kiddos. The excitement of a 4 year old is so precious. (Even a sick 4 year old.) Santa was in full swing at our house. We made cookies. We waited. We read Santa stories. We enjoyed gifts.

-We left Christmas day to travel to Denver to visit with my brother and sister in lawa. My parents were meeting us up there. We, in a stupor, decided to go north through Witchita Falls. Apparently, there was a lot of snow up there. The roads were horrible. The worst I have ever seen. We made it to Denver eventually. 

-The week in Denver was fun. Snow was on the ground! The kids loved that… for about 10 minutes… or until their shoes were soaked. Went to Walmart and bought appropriate cold weather clothing. Round 2 in the snow. Much better this time. Until Ben face plants and decided it is too cold to sled. Summi made some snow angels though.

-Hanging out with the family was good. We enjoyed each others company some of the time… just like any family. But really, it was so nice to all be in the same place with one another.

-Saw some old friends, Jay, Curtis, Emily… so fun to see all of you!

-Simply enjoyed not having any house to work on, no papers to grade, no worries for a few days. (Thank you David and Amy!)

-Made the trek home successfully and without much trouble – we love the stay over in the hotel with the kids… all in one room, the kids lap it up, and it really makes the drive fun!

-Been working our butts off today unpacking, organizing, cleaning, etc…

-Tomorrow it is back to the grind!

-But  it has been so sweet and great! 

-Happy 2010 my friends!