Friday, August 29, 2008

In case of death, the stewardess can take over...

I have to credit bill maher tonight with this comment. Is John McCain smoking crack, no seriously, is he? My AP gov kids came in today with the news and I literally had to say "who" ? We immediately threw the lesson out the door and flew with what does she bring to the RNC table. She is the Governor of Alaska, pop 600,000 and a whopping THREE electoral votes. She from the state that has given us Mike Gravel and Ted Stevens. Yes, I played both sides, it you can said there is another side in the debate today.

Does McCain really think that women will flock to her just because she has 5 kids, including an infant with downs- how will the media spin that for god's sake, that her husband is a "real man" who owns a fishing company, she's in bed with Big Oil, and that she is Pro-Gun, Pro-Drilling, and Pro-Life.

Is she a cheap ploy to win over disgruntled Hillary voters? What a slap in the face to think that balancing the ticket with a women, we will flock to her. Who is doing his research? Not anyone from the last 8 years who have spun disaster after disaster into some type of slick Teflon image that lead to total avoidance of responsibility.

So in 24 hours, I have been moved to tears watching Obama accept the nomination and literally almost uttering what the hell at McCain's choice. I can only wait for the debates, Sarah Palin is going to make Dan Quayle into the smartest VP choice ever.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I can forgive a pumpkin suit

oh hillary, why did you choose to look like the great pumpkin last night. I will forgive you as I have spent the last 24 hours thanking you for doing what only you could to bring your supporters into the tent. Watching you announce obama as the nominee during roll call tonight was both sad for what could have been, but also exciting to think of how much is to come.

Working with my AP kids has been exactly where I want to put my energy this fall. We had a great discussion today about the candidates views on patriotism and the way the DNC vs RNC will portray themselves as united over the next two weeks. It's not about flag pins or vapid rhetoric, it's about who gets to sit at the table and lead this country on the world stage. I want to have faith again the subject I love to teach. Watching Michelle Obama nail why she is proud of her country echos the type of administration that is sorely needed.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Come On, Fox News

Coverage of the breaking news of Obama picking Biden as VP on all other networks- Biden as a past presidential contender twice and his long service in the Senate.

Coverage on Fox- usual "playboy bunny blonde" talking head about his aneurysms and if he would he die in office. At this point he needs a pick a 12 year old as a running mate to deflect his age. It's going be a Barn Burner!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

90 days?

Has been a long day as we had open house from 6-8 after being at school all day. Ben climbed on a table and jumped off in the middle of the cafeteria while I was organizing my NHS student guides to my fear. So I have made an agreement with my husband that I will get myself on some type of schedule this fall that allows me not to work at night from when I get ben in bed until often midnight on school related stuff. I added up that I work typically 60-70 hours per week and he has pleaded with me to find some balance.

So I am asking all my friends to also keep me honest that I can get disciplined and implement the following personal schedule.

Monday- School 6:45-3, meetings until 5, up to one hour at home
Tuesday- School 6:45-3, leave early go to the gym, can do up to 2 hours of work at home
Wednesday- School 6:45-3, appointment every other week in chapel hill, gym on alternate week, only one hour at home
Thursday- School 6:45-3, Late day for required student tutorials at school will work until 5 at school, none at home
Friday- School 6:45-3, get ben early for an afternoon with him. No work tonight!

Weekends- up to 4 hours somehow including going to school if open, try to hit the gym both days

Evaulate in 90 school days if this is what I want to be doing with my energy-

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


this is no surprise to someone who has a colored coded, laminated list attached to her freezer.

I recently read Mother Styles , author Janet Penley that takes your personality profile from the Myers-Briggs test to determine your strengths and weaknesses as a parent. Mine was Extrovert, Sensing, Thinking, and Judging. My mom types was characterized as "most likely to drive the carpool and make a schedule for all involved". How true given that I am hyper organized, encourage Independence with my family as well as students, see things as black vs white, am always wanting to be on the go with a mission.

I have been told by friends and family that I can be intense, stoic, and inflexible which also fits this personality negatively. Ongoing things I am working on :-) An interesting read. I especially liked that the they dedicated a section to husbands, your own mother, mother in laws, and whole family dynamics. Also no surprise is bill is my total opposite, except in thinking over feeling characteristic.

What will ben be? God only knows, he's got all the sides in the mix. I am just hoping for someone who doesn't announce loudly entering school, "I pooped mommy, Ben dirty" at age 18.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Back to School- Not Staring Rodney Dangerfield

Busy week, back at school with lots of meetings and getting ready for the year. I have until labor day to complete my list of to do items, but I am proud that I am returning to school with a completely cleaned out house, garage, and storage space and have gotten much done.

I was really sad kissing Ben good-bye this morning, and it has really hit me all day that I think I am at a point that I want to be home in a part time or even full time capacity in the near future. I love what I teach and working with the kids, but not the soul-crushing bureaucracy that seems to accompany the profession. I have made it past the average 5 years that most do!

I was contacted recently about writing curriculum on contract for the Duke TIP program. I think I am finally willing to take the chance to try another way to use my degrees and knowledge. I have know options outside of traditional school without having to start over in a new career if I just have faith that opportunities are out there.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Bean, Bil, Hedder, and Vega-dog

Ben's family names. One of my to-do list items was to have family photos taken for ben's 2nd birthday. We loved the studio and bought a custom framed piece. As my break comes to an end I can't complain, it has been a great summer. I have gotten to do so much with my family. Ben and I have enjoyed getting out and exploring our city as well as having many lazy days at the pool and playing in the backyard.

My favorite photo from the shoot is the top right of ben looking to the side with only a look that a mom could know. My baby is now a little boy who is counting, naming colors and animals, and loves anything that has wheels. Bill could not be happier that ben is obsessed with a spiderman mr potatohead. oh the things to come...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Is it Un-American?

to be happy that the Chinese Women's gymnastics team won the gold? don't get me wrong, I once fantasized that I could be Mary Lou one day and even had an Olympic themed birthday party (what else can you do in January)? Watching the final floor performance by the elder member of the Chinese team made me realize that while the US athletes give up a normal life, the Chinese seem to also given up their families in the sake of training camps starting at age 3.

I don't see the camera's panning to proud moms and dads who are likely not in attendance. I would imagine that while having a child be selected to train for potential success brings them better standing and likely some wealth. It seems that for the Chinese their presence to host the games and then win gold is likely the single greatest accomplishment they will ever bestow on their country, family, and selves. In that thought, I think they deserve every bit of praise they didn't get from the US commentators tonight who instead were catty about the age contraversy. Cheng Fei, your smile equaled Michael Phelps to me.

Monday, August 11, 2008

5 tanks of gas and 1423 miles

Was I crazy to think going to Florida with a toddler would be without some lessons learned?

1. DVDs are like Muzak for children. I swear the only time I heard ben was when one went off and he wanted another started.
2. I couldn't take Max and Ruby a 3rd straight hour so we played "I spy" car color toddler version at one point followed by mommy sing along.
3. The people who live in eastern Alabama will get time off when they get to hell for living in such a desolate place. The Big H Chicken Buffet is not compensation.
4. I almost bought a 20 buck bonsai tree at the AL/FL border, but didn't want to get out of the car with ben in the heat. Think they had a drive-thru?
5. I listened to so much NPR I think I started my own pledge drive.
6. David Sedaris can make any car trip more fun.
7. Cracker Barrel in Atlanta is missing their "3 types of icebox pies" table display that ben destroyed as well as the peg board game thing that he threw at the waitress.
8. I woke up most mornings at 6 am to " ben play cars now" or "get up mommy, cars"- do you detect a theme?
9. fisher-price little people fit on the end of a 2 year old penis. note to self- do not leave child unattended with little people.
10. Hope to look back one day and remember my sweet ben running along the beach and playing in the pool laughing and kicking, more than the other 9. great trip, but glad to be home

Saturday, August 9, 2008

been caught stealin'

And I don't mean the Jane's addition song. On my way out of our local Belk's (home to all big-haired southern baptist Miss Koret icky dresses), the alarm thing went off. I walked out to my car as I had watched the clerk take of the scanners off my items and didn't think it was me. Suddenly I hear, "come back here now" and some woman running towards me.

I accompany her back to the store where the security alarm that goes off again. I have to take everything out of my bags (other stores too), empty my pockets, wallet and basically admit that I didn't willingly shoplift from their store. All this with the audience of the front door traffic stopping as we are in the way. Next time I think I will swipe a Miss Koret Church of God Dress just so I can make the case that no one should be selling them or thinking someone would steal them .

Friday, August 8, 2008

Lipstick on a Pig

It has been a really sucky day so take this entry with a grain of salt. We are in SC for the weekend before we head home (wish I were there now) on Sunday. I have been watching the pageantry of the opening Olympics with my mom.

My question is among all the beautiful staged productions, where was the homage to Tienanmen Square, the effects of the one child policy, human rights abuses, or suppression of Tibet? Obviously you want to best face forward and the games are about the athletes and not the politics. For once, I agreed with President Bush when the camera panned to him looking at his watch. Yeah, I'm a little put off too.

Perfect Day :-)

We leave for home tomorrow morning :-( Ben and I have had a fantastic Florida trip. Today was a perfect last day. We played in the pool this morning, went for a tricycle ride to the park, I escaped to Seaside beach to shop solo and enjoy their art galleries (yummy key lime gelato), and then we went down to Rosemary Beach to watch the sunset. I made dinner for everyone as a little thank you and then we got back in the pool. I miss Bill and our home, but it has been a wonderful last few days spent before the school year starts back.

Monday, August 4, 2008

100% Fun!

Greetings from sunny and hot Florida. We got here late yesterday and already are in relaxation mode. With the time difference ben and I were up before 6 so we took off and walked/wheeled to a nearby playground so we would be quite for the rest of the house. I didn't realize that it was 4 miles round trip! We came back and jumped in the pool, took long naps (including me who never sleeps during the day-again up at 5:40 am).

In the afternoon we rode tricycle/bikes around the neighborhood and then seafood for dinner. Heading to the outlets tomorrow to hit Stride Rite and Carters for ben and Ann Taylor for me. I am getting together with a friend I met at AP training who lives here on Wed to work on a join public policy project that we have been emailing pieces back and forth since we met. Do I really have to go home at the end of the week????

Friday, August 1, 2008

No Shirt, No Shoes, No problem (SC State Moto)

Greetings from the great state of South Carolina, home of a peach-shaped water tower shaped like a butt hovering over the interstate. Ben and I left on our great summer adventure this morning and will be in Destin Florida by Sunday night at Bill's family's home. As always I totally over booked myself since we got home on Sunday with a zillion things to do his week including have 3 repair people out in 4 days and putting over 100 miles on my car doing errands!

But once I get back, school will be starting and with that an even crazier schedule. Thanks to friends who lent DVD players, videos, and an emergency jump start contraption for our trip. You guys rock for wanting us to make it there without there being TV footage of my chasing ben across an interstate. See you on the other side our our trip on the 12th.