January 28, 2013

Slugs, Snails, and Puppy Dog Tails(22-28)

This week was average with a dose of some kind of interesting. I have been trying to think of any pages I could add to my blog but I can't think of anything so if you have any suggestions let me know!

Day 22

Every day, men have to make choices that could define their lives forever. Minute decisions may change their course and they might end up a different person in ten years had they made a different choice. This story is not one of those examples.

I always end up eating lunch in one of the teachers' lounges alone. Apparently there are two, but I have not discovered the other one. I brought a dollar to buy a coke, which was sticky from some syrup. Well as I was eating lunch, the coke machine decided to grant me another coke. What am I supposed to do with this gift the machine has bestowed upon me? Should I give it to the pregnant teacher I work with? Should I just leave it as free game for anyone in the lounge? Should I turn it into the office and admit that I unintentionally stole seventy-five cents? I think I will go with the best option and save it for the afternoon.

Sometimes things don't happen during the day and I have to stretch something to make it appear "blog worthy".

Day 23

Another Wednesday, another day with preschool choir. One of our regulars excitedly greeted us as we were walking down the hallway. For the sake of privacy, we will call him Brady. Brady is all boy. He is only six years old and has already broken a bone three or four times. One time was at church while jumping off one of those kiddie slides. You know, the ones that are meant for kids to do stupid things on? Besides student teaching kindergarten for half of a semester, this is the first time I really have been introduced to a six year-old boy. I feel he is a great ambassador for his kind.

I have a brother that is four years older than me, but I obviously was never capable of being observant and taking notes of the behavior of this other species. When I was six, I was too egocentric (look it up, I was developmentally appropriate) to notice the other gender. I was married to one boy named Alex, though. I am glad Aaron looked past that when he asked me to marry him.

This boy has fully taken on the roll of introducing me to his kind, and he doesn't even know he is doing it. I pointed out a dead cockroach (no, I did not scream) and he proceeded to go over. Brady would not mind catching said cockroach if he was alive and doing coreography for "La Cucaracha". Brady catches frogs every times it rains, so I am sure cockroaches would be nothing for him.

Day 24

One of our wedding gifts is a "Couple's Devotional Bible" given to us by the pastor at the church I attended when I was a teenager. This particular bible has one year long worth of devotions that are applicable to married couples. We have made a committment to reading it everyday before we go to bed. This has been a great tool for us to grow as a couple and for us to gracefully learn from our mistakes.

Some of the devotions have really stood out for us. The one that relates to today comes from Proberbs 17. Specifically Proberbs 17:1

Better a dry crust with peace and quiet than a house full of feasting with strife.

The devotion suggested that we give each other a little bit of peace when we get home from work so we can greet each other in a loving way rather than taking stress out on your significant other. My way of finding a breather is taking a bath with a lighted candle while my Rodrigo y Gabriela Pandora station is playing in the background. It makes it really easy for me to not take work home with me.

Day 25

The students in my Life Skills' class earn a "Fun Friday" every week. They watch movies and play games such as 'Dominoes' and 'Memory.' Today we watched "Jumanji." This movie terrified me as a child. To me it was the most menacing, eerie, creepy, spine-chilling movie and to show your child such a film is irresponsible and cold-blooded, not to mention torturous. If you are not familiar with the movie "Jumanji," here is my summary of the movie:

A boy who was casted well because of his resemblance to Robin Williams decides it would be a good time to bring home a supernatural game that lures him with African drumbeats. He argues with his dad about boarding school because twelve year-olds know best. He obviously proved this by taking some ominious game into his house. His friend girl comes over and they play the game. He gets sucked into the game, literally, and she gets chased away by bats.

Twenty-six years later a woman and her neice and nephew move into the very same house. The nephew sees a bat and they call an exterminator who responsibly tells them that a boy who used to live there is dead and his body is chopped up and scattered throughout the house.

The kids decide it would be a good idea to play the Jumanji game because no one can resist a good beat, They play and all the animals from Africa come out, including monkeys who have the ability to shoot a gun and drive a car, oversized spiders, and killer plants. They finish the game and throw it out into the world for it to terrorize for someone else.

Well after seeing that as a five year old, someone in my family decided it would be a good idea to buy the board game! Hello?! Has no one watched the film that was basically a warning to not play the game? It really took a lot of convincing for me to play it. No terrifying monkeys or giant spiders came out.

Or did they? ...

Day 26

After working on Aaron's truck all day, Aaron and I went on a much appreciated date. The wait time was thirty minutes, which is pretty average in Midland. I actually enjoy wait times, for the most part. It is a great opportunity to go people watching and it is a good excuse to stay out later. I gave Aaron that lovely ring out of the vending machine. I think it lights up but I can't figure out how to work it. I know. I spoil him.

Day 27

Aaron and I had an interview with a church in Charlotte, Tx via Skype. The picture was posed but I didn't want to have to explain to them why I was taking a pictue of the computer. We really liked the people we interviewed with and it won't be too long until we hear their decision. They have moved faster than what I have come to expect out of a church committee. I am trying not to think about it too much because I don't want to get my hopes up.

Because I get tired by 9:00 we had to cut the date short last night so we continued it today. We had the intention of going to see "Lincoln" but went to the wrong theatre. The movie started at the same time so we didn't realize what was going on until the previews were over. I didn't want to have to stumble in the dark again so we ended up watching another movie instead. And because we are "those people" who kill jokes to a pulp we continued to laugh about how "it was the longest preview we had ever seen" and "that it had a different twist than we were expecting."

Day 28

The school I work at had an assembly in the afternoon. Sorry for the bad picture, I was trying to avoid another awkward explanation. The motivational speaker's name was Melvin Adams. He is a former Harlem Globetrotter and has spoken in the Midland area before. He brought a hip hop group with him this time and they did most of the talking. My kids LOVED them. I had one boy who has a hard time speaking standing up and getting really into it. He and a couple of others from my group went up to freestyle with some other kids. I made sure the crowd yelled the loudest for them. They were so proud of themselves and I am sure we will be hearing about this for the next couple of weeks.

January 21, 2013

Les Mis: Starring Colonel Sanders (15-21)

Day 15

Pardon me while I quote lines from Roxanne.

"Excuse me. Is that a nose or did a bus park on your face?"
"You know, you could de-emphasize your nose if you wore something larger... like Wyoming."

"When you stop to smell the flowers, are they afraid?"

Okay, enough with the puns. They stink!

I always have the strangest thoughts when I first wake up. For example, today I was putting my war-paint on (that's what my grandpa called make-up) and I couldn't stop staring at my nose. For some reason, it looked a lot different than I remembered. At first I thought my nose grew over night. Then I remembered that your nose and ears are constantly growing, so I concluded that my nose grew significantly faster over night. I finally woke up Aaron to see if he noticed a change in my honker. Because he's used to the way my brain works, he took it in stride.

One morning, I was looking for something, got my foot caught in the laundry hamper, and proceeded to fall flat on my face. I didn't make a sound. Just laid there. I was fine; my coordination skills are just off.

There is a reason I wake up two hours before I am supposed to be at school.

Day 16

Being our second week of leading preschool choir, we were a lot more prepared. Aaron didn't like the material provided and came up with music that actually taught basic skills. He did an amazing job today! They learned about high and low sounds and used examples of animal sounds leading it. The kids had fun imitating frogs, birds, dog growls, puppy barks, and a wolf's howl. It is a learning process for both of us on what is the best way to teach preschool choir, but I am so impressed with what he is doing with them. They are learning basic music skills, valuable lessons from the Bible, and songs that are appropriate for their age.

After preschool choir, we upgrade to adult choir. There are usually two accompanists. One plays the bass cleff and the other plays the treble on two separate pianos. Well one was sick today, so I volunteered to be the other accompanist. I wouldn't have had the guts to do that two years ago. I am glad I had the opportunity to be the pianist at the church Aaron was a music minister at in Abilene. They were very loving and patient with all of my goofs and mistakes as I learned to play in front of people. It was a great first church for Aaron and I to be a part of as a couple and quickly became our home away from home. We love seeing them every time we are in Abilene.

Day 17

The men of the household went to sing in a "Singing Men of West Texas" concert so me and my mother-in-law went out to eat and get much needed manicures and pedicures. I always feel I should bring an apology note for the awful condition of my hands and feet. My mother-in-law has made friends with one of the beauticians and has even gotten her to come to her church pretty regularly. While we were talking with her, one of the daughters of another employee came up. We found out that she was in kindergarten and knew all of the numbers. We even taught her a "knock knock" joke.

Knock Knock
Who's there?
Banana who?


Knock knock
Who's there?
Orange who?
Orange you glad I didn't say banana?

I am sure you have heard that joke before but remember, everyone has to hear it for the first time at some point in their lives and today was this girl's special day. The rest of the time there, she would do her own version of the joke.

Knock knock.
Who's there?
Orange who?

Orange you glad you don't have to say who's there anymore?

That joke is pretty clever for a kindergartener. She agreed with me. She said that joke several times to us and then to a new customer who came in.

After my nails were finished, they placed me in a dark corner with a drying table to dry all my freshly painted nails. Strangly, the first song that came to my mind was "Macho Macho Man." I used to think it was "Nacho Nacho Man" thanks to an old commercial. It was hard for me to stay awake, being in a warm, dark corner with the sound of the low air dryer going on in the background. It was only 7:45 but I was ready for bed.

Day 18

Because the only thing we had to cook for dinner was fish, it was decided that it would be better to go out to eat. We ventured to Odessa and ate at Golden Corral. It was my first time to eat there and was pleasently surprised by most of the food offered there. Ironically, I tried eating the fried fish and it was as good as you could expect from a place called "Golden Corral."

We then went to the movies and watched "Les Miserables". I kept trying to fall asleep but Aaron wouldn't let me. Working full-time can easly turn anyone into an old lady or gent. Despite the fact that some woman still didn't know that phones have the "silent" or "power off" button,the inner drama geek girl in me was blown away. Did anyone else notice that Colonel Sanders made an appearance in the movie as the grandfather of Marius?

Day 19

After eating some grilled cheese sandwhiches and Caldo Xochitl ,we went to the "grand opening" for Midland's Wildlife Preserve. The trail was really well made. Part of it was a boardwalk and they had various bird blinds around the park. Besides a few ducks and a couple of butterflies, we didn't really see any wildlife. We did see some tracks and it was fun to guess what animals they belonged to. Pretty much all my guesses were either a dog or cat, depending on the size. Clearly I am not as out-doorsy as I claim to be.

Day 20

Aaron and I made a quick trip to Abilene to lead music at the church we were at in college. They are short a music minister so every once in a while we fill in for them. I mentioned them before in this post and I will probably mention them a million more times throughout this blog experience. We consider them our "Abilene family," you know, besides Aaron's actual family and my long lost birth cousin. Here is a video of Aaron singing "He's Been Faithful" by Carol Cymbala.

Day 21

Today was my first teacher workday. The plan was for me to gather a bunch of materials together for some lessons after we had a meeting in the morning. The teachers had meetings all day so it was going to be just me and the other teacher assistant. The science list took me all morning and I was planning on finishing the rest in the afternoon. As it turns out, they needed the list of goals for each student in their meeting (which was what I was using). Because I had to be there until 4pm, I decided to organize and santitize everything. I was a lot more tired today than I am when kids are there.

The school seemed like a ghost town. The general ed teachers had their own meeting in the cafeteria, and there were only a couple of lights on in the hallway. I definately soaked in the peace and quite before the hallways are once again filled with teenage angst and body odor.

January 14, 2013

I Tell You What (8-14)

This was my first week as an assistant teacher for a Life Skills class (special ed) at a Middle School in Midland. I love the kids I get to work with. I get a ton of hugs and a lot of compliments. I definately go home feeling loved.

Also, I added a new page! Blog Babble is a page dedicated to websites that are on the same subjects of my post of the previous week. For example I mentioned Bill Cosby's sweaters so there is a link to a website devoted to The Cosby Show's wardrobe.

So, I will have the list of websites up every Sunday and a new blogpost every Monday.

Day 8

The lunchboxes are back! Back in high school I had a pretty large collection of vintage looking lunchboxes. I think my first one had a theme of "I Love Lucy." Tuesday was my first day to show up to work (check out my previous post for more information on that). The teacher I am an assistant for was on bed-rest, so we combined the two life skills classes into one until she came back. I find I have more patience for special ed kids than for bratty general ed students.

Day 9

About a month ago, Aaron and I volunteered to take over children's choir at my in-law's church. I completely forgot all about it and came home from work only to find out that today was the day we were taking it over, and it is not the children's choir but the preschool. Having the servant heart that I do, I let Aaron lead everything and I supported him. I know that isn't what you call "giving your best" but maybe next week I will feel more prepared, and actually help out.

Day 10
Nothing really exciting happened today, so here is a picture of Aaron and his groomsmen as King of the Hill characters drinking coke because we are baptist:

Cameron as Bill, Aaron as Hank, Jeff as Dale, Jeremy D. as Boomhauer, and Jeremy E. as Kahn. I had to get a seperate picture for Kahn because I couldn't find one of him with the group until after I edited the first one. Men, you are welcome. P.S. Through this experience I discovered that "Kahn" is an anagram of "Hank."

Day 11

Our last wedding present arrived! We got to choose from a list of different gifts on We decided to get a tent because we both have loved the idea of going camping together, plus we already got all the kitchen gadgets we could ever think of. The logical thing to do when one gets a new tent is to set it up on your bed and throw the cat in there. As you can see, he is quite fond of it. The sounds of it moving really freak him out.

My wedding pictures I ordered online came in today as well. I got a coupon through shutterfly to get fifty free prints so I had to make a selection throughout all my pictures. It was ridiculously hard narrowing them down. I ended up just ordering my ceremony photos for now, well until I find another coupon through Frugal Girls.

Day 12
About a month ago, we sent Aaron's truck to Lubbock to be painted. It's a 1956 dodge they found in a pasture. All the parts are courtesy of ebay. Today, we got to pick it up!



Apparently, it is the talk of the town in Lubbock. MAACO said once they have the truck together and running to send them pictures so they can put it in their advertisements. Now if only we can keep the men of the house motivated...

While we were in Lubbock, we bought a lamp from Kirklands. When we brought it back and discovered that we had to rearrange the living room in order for it to fit. We ended up not being able to watch the Miss America Pagent, like I intended to. One of my birth relatives is Miss Kentucky. By the time we got the T.V. to work, the pageant was over.

Day 13

After rearranging the house so the lamp could feel comfortable in it's new environment, I decided to sit down and finish reading Anna Karenina. Gilmore Girls is one of my beloved T.V. shows and I found a "Rory Gilmore" reading list. That was one of the books. Thanks to my "Good Reads" app, I can keep that list and read some of the books online, and after you rate twenty books, they will start suggesting books for you to read.

Day 14

Even though half of my job description includes dealing with every type of bodily fluid you could think of, I decided eating sushi for lunch would be a good idea. I am required to take a thirty minute lunch break even though I could just as easily eat while the kids are eating. But if it is required to eat lunch alone while questionable fluids are drying on my clothes and the smell of middle school body odor lingers in the air, than eat in solitude I must do.

January 7, 2013

Giant Snowflakes (1-7)

I have made some improvements to the blog! My goal is to have several pages besides the blog; right now I have added an "about me" page. I also have a "subscribe by email" link for those of you who don't have a blogger account but still want to be informed everytime I post. This is for you, grandma.

Today starts the 365 days of photography project. I am calling it "365 days of camera phone" because I am not going to pretend I am a photogrpaher. If this sounds fun but you don't have a blog account, here is a link to a website devoted to the project. Click me!

Day 1

I have a feeling most of my pictures are going to be about food. One of the first things I ever learned about Aaron is his love for Hamburger Helper's beef stroganoff. There is also "favorite soup" and premade chicken pot pie. That one does require putting his initial in the pie. His taste for simple food makes cooking easy for this newlywed; although, I do make him try some "fancy" food as I experiment in the kitchen. I will say that I am very blessed with a man who is willing to help or cook when I don't feel like that. Ladies, I found a winner!

Day 2

That's me on top of the roof! Getting in touch with my "inner Grinch", I was taking off the Christmas lights I put up a month ago. I take credit for inspiring the rest of the block to bring out their decorations. I wonder how many lights will survive until the next year. I want to know how that happens. When you put up the lights, all of them work. You take them out the next year and half the strand is dead. I could understand if they were plugged in and just burned. Seriously, if someone has an answer, don't leave me in the dark (pun intended).

I did have a nice man come offer to help. I had asked Aaron to bring the ladder to the other side. The gate to get in the backyard from the side doesn't open all the way, thanks to West Texas wind, so Aaron had to throw the ladder over the fence and walk around. When he did that, it appeared that the ladder fell over and I was stuck on the roof, so a nice man pulled over and offered to set up the ladder for me. I sometimes take for granted the friendliness of people from the south.

Day 3

First snow of the year! Why is it so difficult to take pictures of it snowing? It was snowing a lot harder than it appears in the picture. Wilson A. Bently was the first person to take a picture of a snowflake, so to make up for that awful picture, here is a picture of the first snowflake photographed.

Man, snowflakes were a lot bigger in 1885.

Day 4

So far, half of my pictures have been of food. We went to IHOP for dinner in Odessa and the waitress was having a hard time getting our order right. I always feel bad when waiters/waitresses struggle. I was a waitress at T.G.I.Fridays for a short period of time and I was just awful at it. Every day I worked I was surprised I didn't get fired. It wasn't that I was rude, I just always seemed to mess up people's orders no matter how hard I tried. So please tip your server. I may just be incompetent but it is not easy.

Day 5

No, you are not looking at Bill Cosby's sweaters. It's Aaron's baby clothes! I always have a fun time going through people's memorabilia and putting the pieces together that make up who they are. Once I find it, I am going to try to put our wedding rehearsal slideshow that I spent forever on. It has some old pictures and videos of me and Aaron.

Day 6

Church day! We accidentally matched. We are slowly turning into that couple who wear matching jog suits. Except in our situation, we would wear it to lounge around the house, not to actually jog.

Day 7

Beauty standards are getting thinner and thinner.

I was hired as an assistant teacher in a resource class and school started today. The last I heard from the school district was that they were doing a background check on me. I assumed that they were going to call to have me sign a contract. They never did so I assumed, again, that they were going to call me sometime this week since they were not open last week. I also assumed that I couldn't start work until I signed a contract. Well, the whole saying that goes with "assuming" something did apply to me.
I unintentionally skipped my first day on the job. After getting that call, Aaron and I went shopping for some teacher clothes. That's where the skeleton comes in. I didn't read the sign so I am not really sure what a skeleton was doing around cosmetics in a department store.

January 1, 2013

I Have a Dream to be a Trekkie

I welcomed the New Year in with an upset stomach so my plans to make a blog-post failed. That being said, I have made two New Year's resolutions because I am not original.

1) Lose weight. I know it's not orignial but that is because New Years is a time when we finally leave our grandparents' houses feeling like we just barely escaped a diabetic coma with all of the abundance of food and sweets provided. It is also a time when you are around family members who are polite enough to tell you how much weight you have gained since college (and the wedding).

2) Do a 365 days of pictures blog-post. For those of you who aren't familiar with this, you take a picture everyday and blog about it. So far I have failed at this but who said you have to start on January 1? My goal is to blog about this once a week. This will keep me blogging more, which I know all of you tens of people are very thankful for.

3) Become a Sci-Fi nerd. Don't question me, but I have a true desire to become a trekkie. I have yet to watch more than two episdoes.

That being said, I hope you ate your black-eyed peas today. If you have not, live long and prosper anyway.

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