Wednesday, July 1, 2009

clear springs quips

here are two amazing quotes i heard at clear springs (friends seafood and burger restaurant where i am working, and east texans love to eat).

"We're so hungry we can see builscuits walkin' on crutches."


"Man they got Robert Earl Keen playin' in here. You got to love some Robert Earl."

More to come I hope.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

saffron rice: yum!

oh, lost. how i love you!

i am watching the episode from last week and i am so excited that there will be one more after this to watch today!

also, i'm eating a chocolate brownie clif bar and it is amazing.

also, i got to sleep in a little bit today, even though clementine kind of kept me up for the last 30 minutes of sleep. bit it was cozy enough anyway, and all the kitties came and visited me in bed too. lovely pets.

this weekend is family weekend for me and chris. we are going to see his family for the weekend, and i'm going off on saturday to help my dad move in to his brand new apartment! i hope it is very fun.

oh dang, that means i have a lot of homework to do tonight and sunday.


i just found out that a beautiful house we were looking at renting was given to someone else. SO SAD.

Monday, March 23, 2009

when you need a friend, call me

i had my first not disappointing lesson today! my students were assigned a short chapter, they pretty tired, and we had a discussion instead of a writing activity.
i planned it last night and i think this is a much better avenue than having specific product lessons. discussing is more their style, and seems to lend itself to what they actually have trouble with more than graphic organizers do.
i expect they will be hyper again tomorrow but i think my lessons for tuesday and wednesday are strong too so i have moderately high hopes.
a problem i am having is that E reads much more quickly than the other two, and J hates the idea of re-reading something. (he actually just dislikes reading altogether.) i keep explaining to him why it's good reading practice to re-read, but he rolls his eyes and looks around the room. i told him today that i just want him int he book in some way the whole time we're reading. i said he can scan, look at the pictures, or go back and re-read. as long as he's in the book.

also the student teacher i like was in today which made the room more pleasant, and the student teacher i'm not a big fan of was much better today.

and now, a cat story:
me: malcolm was a b.a. this morning.
i got out of bed and went to potty. malcolm followed me so i left the door cracked so he could come use the litter box.
he came in and sniffed around, and all of a sudden a tiny paw comes shooting between the crack in the door.
Sean: ha
me: molly was like spy attacking the air just inside the bathroom.. so malcolm went up to see what was up, and molly walked in. she took one swat at him and malc popped her one right int he face.
she looked shocked, then ran off.
she deserves it bc she keeps eating his food
Sean: hahaha
good good
that's how he got me to stop eating his food

Monday, March 9, 2009

spring is near!

chris has been helping me ride a bike. sara gave me her old one, which is SO CUTE. it is a green huffy with a really low seat which helps me stop when i get freaked out, and helps me start more easily. the other day we went on a bike ride and stopped to drink water, rest my legs, and take these pictures:

that is my bike-riding sweater, since it matches my bike so perfectly! also, the handlebars are green with glitter. WHAT.

ps check out those tree shadows! beautiful.

saturday is sean's going away party. i am muy excited about it and muy excited that mike is coming homef or it!! i am not so excited that my brother is moving away for a long time very soon. i am just now realizing the gravity of the situation.
oh well, good thing i don't like him.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

pictures and fourth grade

-i bought a camera yesterday. it was/is very exciting. i have never (?) spent this much money on something for myself besides rent/bills. maybe i have, but definitely not my own money. and now of course, i have less than $10 in the bank. no, mom and dad, don't worry. i get paid monday, and timed my purchase so that i can still pay bills on time. the camera is a Canon Powershot SD770IS.
i am thrilled and can't wait to receive my bundle of joy in the mail.

-i have been having a marvelous time in fourth grade. i get up early -6:30- and very reluctantly get up, i try to be eating breakfast but otherwise ready to go by 7:30, and leave home by 7:45. sometimes i am a bit late, but as long as i arrive before 8:15 i am on time. i try, however, to leave on time because i like getting there at 8:00 to have morning circle* with fifth grade, then be there for class-switching time, and have morning circle with fourth grade. then is writing workshop. then reading mini-lesson, and reading workshop. that is when i get to pull students i need to work with. yesterday i did pre-assessments of my three assigned students' reading skills. i checked fluency and comprehension, then i checked how many sight words they could instantly read from Fry's high frequency words list. they are really smart, and though one of my students is behind the other two, they are all really interesting, cool kids. i am excited to teach them, and learn from them.

-watching ms. holli (the classroom teacher) has really made me feel like i can be a teacher. i think in a year i can run a classroom of 24 ten year olds, not lose my mind, and not screw them up.

-the student teacher in our class is really nice. so is my fellow intern 1, and i have a feeling the intern 2s are too. and not dumb! oh how i love non-dumb teachers-to-be!

*morning circle is wonderful. ms. holli puts on the song "if i could teach the world to sing" and everyone sits in a circle on the rug. when everyone's sitting and quiet, she puts on james taylor's "you've got a friend" and we twist our arms and hold our own hands (crossing the midpoint of the body improves brain function), close our eyes, sit cross-legged, and listen. about 2/3 of the way through the song, ms. holli tells us to roll our necks, our shoulders, and then breathe 3 deep long breaths. she then goes around the circle one by one saying "Good Morning ___. How are you?" and if they say something like "mad," "excited," or "curious" she asks them why. she asks the student teacher and interns too, and it is really nice, and helps integrate us into the classroom. then everyone says "Good morning, Ms. Holli. How are you?" and she replies and they go about their day. morning circle is the best part of my monday through thursday.

Monday, February 2, 2009


i had my first day at internship this morning. i am in the fourth grade at SFA charter school with Ms. Holli. I'll be there during morning message, writing, and reading monday thru thursday. i'll be assigned a small group of 3 students for reading instruction and assessment, and otherwise i'll be helping, observing and learning from ms. holli. they call us "special teachers."

i was so nervous that i'd be late this morning. i set my alarm for 6:30 and woke up a few times in the night, scared that i was late. when my phone started ringing the alarm song, i jumped up, thinking i had slept in. i got up and pet molly, gave her medicine, got beautiful, ate breakfast, and successfully left at 7:50, and was early for my class meeting at 8:15! go me! hopefully i won't be late at all this semester.

big news on the kitten front!
molly has been just so scared since i've had her. (actually, she's been scared since ashley took her from where she was living.) after trying many strategies, i decided on putting her with her food, water, litter box, and little cat house in the bathroom. she stayed in that cat house if anyone was in the bathroom, and came out to eat and poop, from what i could tell.
well, yesterday i went in to pet her and give her medicine (she has worms), and she started PURRING! this is the first time i've heard her do so, and until very recently she shook whenever someone touched her. well, she went from purring to pawing at my hand, playing with me, to rolling over and nuzzling my hand, to sticking her head out the hole of her cat house, to actually coming out of the cat house and eating in front of me! then she ran back in and cleaned herself in front of me.
basically i am not sure when i have ever had my heart melt so much. i don't know if you know anything about cats, but they do NOT do those things if they are scared. this morning i went in to pet her more and she was out of her out of her house and didn't run back in. i pet her again and she showed lots of affection. i think soon she will be coming to me, and then i'll introduce her to the other animals.

i made bread last night! it was my second time to do so. i have sam's old bread maker, and it makes really delicious white bread. i'm sure it makes delicious other breads too (and apparently jam!) but i don't know for sure yet. mmm yum yum homemade bread.

that's pretty much it on the home front.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Maggie and Millie and Molly and May

a lot of things have happened since the popsicles. but first i will tell you about the popsicles.

  • starbucks frappucino (the kind you buy already bottled) with creme-de-menthe and chocolate syrup: delicious. but mix in the chocolate syrup, because it doesn't freeze if you just put it in the bottom of an ice cube tray.
  • starbucks frappucino (the kind you buy already bottled) with just chocolate syrup: ditto.
  • mandarin orange segments in the "light syrup" they come in: this was the best one i think. it froze well, and the real fruit was a wonderful element.
  • mandarin orange segments in the "light syrup" they come in and triple sec: so good. just like the above, but with triple sec! (which you couldn't taste, but obviously added the fun of alcohol.)
  • raspberry jam mixed in with plain yogurt and honey/agave nectar, layered with plain yogurt: wonderful. plain jam doesn't freeze either, but mixed with yogurt it does and it's awesome. imagine a creamsicle, but raspberry. only it's a little thick. i might mix in some milk next time.
  • margarita mix with salt and tequila (so... margarita pops!): YUM!
  • cinnamon tea with powdered cinnamon sprinkled: no bien. the cinnamon just floated to the top and was not good, and otherwise it was like licking ice. which is quite pleasant. so tea pops are probably great. subtle flavor. no plain cinnamon though. we didn't finish these.
  • raspberry jam with lemonade poured over it: YUM. but again, raspberry jam doesn't freeze. maybe dissolve some raspberry jam in lemonade, or add actual raspberries to lemonade. or just lemonade pops!
  • blackberry jam with lemonade poured over it: ditto.
  • banana, chocolate syrup, and soymilk blended together: YES. i think these were chris' favorite, and i sure liked them too. froze wonderfully, and were a great dessert.
  • also, a note on the structure of the pops: i wouldn't recommend using just a toothpick in ice cube trays. the pop usually fell off about halfway through eating the pop, and then you had to either hold half in your hand, or eat it all at once. popsicle sticks apparently were made for a reason. but the size of the pops was really nice. you could have many flavors at one time and not be gorging yourself.
  • the verdict: will i be making my own popsicles again? YES!
now that that's over with, here are things that have happened, probably out of order:

chris moved back to nac. what a wonderful thing. he moved into sara kruter's house, where clementine has many dog friends to play with in the backyard (most notably frank).

it got cold. then hot. then cold. hopefully this won't last too long. but in the meantime, it is nice to appreciate how warm clementine is, and how i have a nice boo to snuggle with, and how i have a home and food.

my grandfather, Col. Charles Musgrave, died, bascially of the complications of old age. he was 96 years old and an interesting, kind, generous, and smart man. he worked in a ccc camp in colorado during the depression, went to college with the help of rotc, served in the army air guard (predecessor to the air force) and the oss (predecessor to the cia), was a lieutenant colonel, knew chang kai-shek, briefed nixon when he entered office, was a father, and was my grandfather. i found out when i was a teenager that he was an intimidating man. he never scared me, but when i met my mom's high school best friend, i heard stories about "The Colonel." it seemed so funny to me that the man who let me have root beer floats at any time of night or day could ever scare anyone. then i found out how much of the world he had seen, and how many times he had changed and adapted in his life.
i was in dallas at the museum of art when my mom called to tell me he had passed. he had been sick and we knew it was coming, but it was still sad. sad in such a different way from the sadness when it's not someone's time yet. i guess now i understand what it means to really grieve, and what it means to grieve because it's what you know you need to do. i wasn't torn up or shocked at his death, but i did want to honor the occasion, be there for my mom, and help the family. i wanted to think about what he means to me.
i went to austin the next day. my mom, my aunt, and i cleaned out most of his apartment. that was one of the -i don't want to say best- experiences of my life. he had so many things that indicated his stage in life, other things that made me remember who i knew him as, other things from people i had never heard of, things of my grandmother's, things from the military, and things from our family's history. all in a little apartment for assisted living. i kept a knife, fork, and spoon, and a grapefruit spoon. i kept some paper i just liked, and a roald dahl book. i hope i can have a painting my grandmother made. and i took a piece of paper, on which he wrote "brandeis," obviously at least 3 years ago, probably 5, apparently to remember were it was i attended college. somehow it made the move. so i kept it.

i watched barack obama take the oath of office while i was in austin. it was really amazing, and i am proud. i am glad i watched it with my mom and brother (and charlie and malcolm too), and it is remarkable how cute sasha obama is. hillary is looking a lot better these days too. what? the nation has taken great strides and is in a frightening place, but we are now more hopeful? yeah, ok, that too. but there was some sweet fashion going on.

i got a new kitten. she was saved by ashley and given to me, and she's been at my house for a week. she is a real scaredy cat, and so far i've only seen her in and under things, save very brief periods of reluctant entrapment by chris' arms, but she is really cute. she has huge eyes and grey, blonde, red hairs. less visible stripes than george, but probably the same kind of cat. today we made great strides in our relationship when i was awoken by her loud meowing (the first time i'd heard it) in my bedroom. i guess she was hungry, and had eaten the tuna fish i gave her as a peace offering. i am taking that meowing as a sign that a)she is alive b)she knows i am the one who feeds her and c)she comes out of hiding at nighttime. it probably sounds like these are tiny developments, or not developments at all, but trust me. this is big. soon enough, she will love me. oh. i named her molly.

school started. i am in my first semester of internship, and so far all i know is that we will be doing reading instruction with small groups, and that i am at the sfa charter school. monday we will go to campus for the first time and get our classroom assignments. i am excited to do so.
the strange thing for me about this semester so far is that as an intern you pretty much have the same teachers for every class. and all the classes are very similar. so i get very confused about which one i am going to, which teacher i have there, and what each class is about. soon it will all reveal itself, and for now i'm just going along for the ride, and doing what my schedule tells me to do. i am also taking a class at night which is not an internship class but is required some time before graduation. it will probably be boring but possibly useful in life (business communication), and it's just once a week.

that is that, ladies and gentlemen. my life since i last abandoned this blog for 17 days. until next time!

Monday, January 12, 2009


yes, i know that popsicles are for summer. but i have been thinking about them lately and i wanted to make some creative pops today. they are in the freezer now. i emptied two ice cube trays and got all the likely (and some unlikely) contenders out of my fridge and pantry.

my hopefully yummy pop flavors are:
  • starbucks frappucino (the kind you buy already bottled) with creme-de-menthe and chocolate syrup
  • starbucks frappucino (the kind you buy already bottled) with just chocolate syrup
  • mandarin orange segments in the "light syrup" they come in
  • mandarin orange segments in the "light syrup" they come in and triple sec
  • raspberry jam mixed in with plain yogurt and honey/agave nectar, layered with plain yogurt
  • margarita mix with salt and tequila (so... margarita pops!)
  • cinnamon tea with powdered cinnamon sprinkled
  • raspberry jam with lemonade poured over it
  • blackberry jam with lemonade poured over it
  • banana, chocolate syrup, and soymilk blended together
i will update with the positive or negative results of these combos. i am very excited and optimistic.

since i don't have popsicle trays (or proper popsicle sticks), i poked holdes in wax paper to put toothpicks through and layed it on the ice trays. then when i put the toothpicks in, they didn't fall to the side.

freeze, baby, freeze.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

happier new year

it's been awhile. i always get impatient with my blog-writing friends and family for not posting, and then i realize that it's been weeks since i have either. hypocrasy!

it is a new year. you may have noticed the change in year numbers (8 --> 9), the parties you went to, the big ball that fell on manhattan... but if you didn't know, it is now 2009. instead of 2008. for me this is a wonderful thing. i feel like i've almost accomplished it. i'm sure the world would have turned one year older without me, but all the things that went wrong this year seem to overshadow the things that have gone right, and i made it out alive and ok. which is why i'd like to mention those things that have gone right! (thanks for the inspiration for this list, alison.) in no particular order:

  • many of my friends graduated from college, and i was able to see them do it.
  • rabbit and ashley got engaged.
  • i forgave someone. at least two people actually.
  • mom and charlie moved in together.
  • i (who-knows-how-temporarily) adopted george washington the cat into my care.
  • dad got a puppy.
  • kimberlee, alison, and arum all visited.
  • sean put plans and dreams into motion.
  • aubrey got engaged, and asked me to be a bridesmaid.
  • amy and bryan decided to become engaged (although i believe the actual event happened on jan. 1.) um, i hope it's ok that i wrote this here. but they didn't say not to tell. and i'm happy about it so too bad!
  • grandpa lived through a few close calls.
  • our friends made it through a terrific loss. (yes i am counting that as a good thing. because we could have fallen apart.)
  • my dad wasn't hurt in the house fire.
  • i found out how brave chris is.
  • edit: i didn't mention my aunt being cured of colon cancer after almost dying. it seems so long ago i can't believe that was this year. wow.
  • ha! see? last year was so good that i forgot at least two HUGE things. the above, and OBAMA BEING FUCKING ELECTED. duh. duhduhduhduhduhduh.
wonder what else wonderful happened last year? comment with at least one wonderful (or at least pretty good) thing that happened in 2008. it will probably cheer you up, even if you already feel cheerful.

i am going to choose to be thankful as much as i can. i will always look back at 2008 as a horrible year in many respects, and i'm glad to see it go, but it's not healthy to stay angry or sad about it. it's over and i am a lot better person than i was when it began.

here is a prayer from e e cummings for the new year. maybe you can say it too.

may my heart always be open to little
birds who are the secrets of living
whatever they sing is better than to know
and if men should not hear them men are old

may my mind stroll about hungry
and fearless and thirsty and supple
and even if it's sunday may i be wrong
for whenever men are right they are not young

and my myself do nothing usefully
and love yourself so more than truly
there's never been quite such a fool who could fail
pulling all the sky over him with one smile