31 May 2011

The M-M-m-m-Mall

(For those of you who are old enough, you might remember a show in the early 60's called "Dobie Gillis" and his beatnik friend was Maynard G. Krebs who always stuttered when he said the word "work".)
I feel like Maynard when I have to go to the m-m-m-mall.

I know I've shared my anxiety about shopping with you before but I have to say that I survived three hours of being in the mall yesterday. I visited three stores then I felt the walls coming in on me. Proof that I was there:

I decided I needed a nice black dress that would withstand the ages. Well, at least until the next time I go to the m-m-m-m-mall and that will be another 10 years I am sure.
Anyway, I mentioned to my sister-in-law in southern California that I needed to find a dress. She suggested I look on-line. I think she knew that wouldn't happen so she called me later and directed me to several dresses that Macy's had on-line. I liked all of them that she had chosen! My problem would be that I had no clue what size I wear since Good Will clothes don't always have the sizes still attached!
Anyway, I decided to go to the Macy's store and try on a few to see what size I would need to order. The night before, I laid in bed and visualized a wonderful elderly sales woman who had nothing to do but help me find a dress.

On the way into town, I stopped at Starbuck's and treated myself to a cappuccino with a small pastry treat. Then on to the m-m-m-mall.
The parking lot was almost empty, making me think the stores had not opened yet. I walked right in and the store was eerily empty of people. I had to do a major search to find the women's clothing because since my last visit in 2002, the store had been rearranged. (Go figure!)

I finally found a non-teenager section when a sales lady asked if she could help me. She did not match my vision as she was very young. I showed her the print outs from the computer of three dresses. She looked them up and said they carried one in a size too small for me.

She offered to show me where this style of dress could be found. From there, it was pure joy. She pulled out dresses exactly like I wanted, or thought I wanted. She carried them into the dressing room, and put me across from the 3-way mirror where you can see your back side.

I tried them all on. I needed the largest size of the ones we picked out and in petite. She explained that they fit my waist better and my shoulders, it isn't only about the length.
I told her I didn't like the way the dresses were stylish in the front but then straight down in the back. Showing off the fact that I have no waist and less of a butt that I had even thought! No shape at all from behind....all in the boobs. Dang it.

The next thing I knew, she brought the perfect dress, it draped at the neckline and had style in the front as well as in the back. She was amazing.

The piped in music would have driven me out of the store in 10 minutes flat but her helpfulness and smile made it bearable. I decided to look for some pants that didn't bag and sure enough she found those for me too. I am exactly four sizes bigger on top than on the bottom! Talk about lop-sided!

I decided to chance another store that two co-workers keep telling me about. They had 40% off of everything in the store so I scooped up several tops.

Then over to see if I could get some sheets that were on sale, none left for King size beds so I removed myself from the mall and took myself to lunch.
Then to the grocery store and home.

Thanks all to my sister-in-law who found the right style for me and to the kind sales girl!

Now all I need is a place to wear the dress (haha).

30 May 2011

Western Tanager

This is a great website for bird watchers. We have Western Tanagers here now. The males are beautiful with their breeding colors. I love listening to them singing in the trees. If you follow the link, you can hear their calls and look up birds you see or hear.

The photo was borrowed from the Cornell Orinthology website as well.
I've tried to catch them in my camera lens but I'm not steady enough and they move too quickly for me.

29 May 2011

I'm Not Complaining....

This isn't a clear photo, but that is hail on the ground and coming down hard. May 28th with hail!
I know the days are getting longer somewhere, just not here because we don't see the sun setting or rising through the dark clouds.
I'm not complaining, okay? I'm just "reporting" the weather.
Better than tornadoes.

28 May 2011

New Doo

An 8th grade girl wanted to straighten my hair. I finally caved and let her do it yesterday. I love it! Seriously, I can run my fingers through my hair for the first time ever! I shake my head and my hair just swings along. Jack doesn't like it at all so it looks like I'll just wash it and get my curls back again.

27 May 2011

Not So Logical

I love playing logic puzzles. But when I cannot sleep and I hit the computer at 2:30 a.m., my sense of logic goes out the window.
This is the site I go to play logic puzzles. Give them a try, but only when you are rested, okay?

24 May 2011

Lucky Me

This is where I work; that is, for the next 16 days. I am a very lucky woman. To be paid to walk this field and watch over kids and interact with them in such a beautiful setting is rather a dream. Of course some of those "naughty" kids wake me into reality once in awhile! I'm not feeling nostalgic, I'm just feeling lucky to have had a job so close to home and doing something that I have loved doing. (Yes, there have been days that I couldn't wait to get home and scream to the top of my lungs. But for the most part, it's been a beautiful ride.)

22 May 2011


I went to pluck this leaf from my bagonia plant and decided it was worthy of a photo first.It looks like the sunlight was radiating right out from the leaf itself.

I'm down to just 17 working days left. I should be doing a little jig about now but I feel like I'm in the midst of a tornado instead. Every piece of important paper that I touch, I manage to lose. I must have a drawer or a market bag that is just sucking these things up. It is a puzzle. One I'd love to solve because as I mentioned, this is important stuff.

I need a full time assistant.

17 May 2011

Hand Me A Shovel and I am Out of Here!!!

Here I go....off to find the treasure. If I don't find the big stash under the bright rainbow, I'll surely find the smaller treasure. It's right out there.....just across the street.....

15 May 2011

For What Good It Will Do

Our weather is for sh#@*!! We have had a handful of glorious days in between a cold, wet, and did I say cold spring?!
Jack made some raised garden beds out by my clothesline. We wanted some tomatoes and herbs close at hand rather than a ¼ mile away where our garden sits. His back is so bad he cannot do gardening any more unless it is all raised so this is a trial run for us. Well, it would be if the sun ever comes out and the rain stops.
Of course, we don't have flooding like down south. My heart goes out to those folks who are losing everything due to the floods. Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, and who knows what else. So many folks are in crisis mode right now and here I am complaining that I haven't seen the sun shining.
Okay, I quit. (complaining, that is...)

And so, I present...our tomatoes after one full month of "growing"!

10 May 2011

The WOW Factor

I went to work today and we had an assembly. It was supposed to be a dance exhibit. I dragged my feet and worked on a project I needed to finish up then decided I best get my butt over to the gymnasium. I barely walked in and sat down when the woman at the microphone held up a banner she had made. She talked about how it was an award she had made up and it is called the "WOW Award". She is giving it to people who just "Wow" others. Then she said she was giving this to a woman at our school who goes above and beyond the call of duty and loves the kids more than anyone she can think of. Yup.....she called me forward.
I about fainted. How honored I felt. I was truly knocked off kilter by her kind words. Several boys ran down and surrounded me to hug the air out of me. I had to shoo them away! It was very sweet and silly at the same time.
So here is my banner. I'm going to hang it in my sewing room so I can think about those kids long after I am away from them!
Actually, they are the ones who "WOW" me every day.

09 May 2011

Red Eye

Here it is.....this is what stress does to me. (At least I think it is stress...would be nice to know for sure!) I'm going to camp out at the doctor's doorstep today.

08 May 2011

Busy, busy, busy!

Well, shoot a mile! I had no clue it has been this long since I posted to my blog. Oh my, I have been busy. My back still hurts a bit from lifting that microwave...or should I say trying to lift it!

Our 3rd Annual Thrifty Fashion Show and Tea was yesterday. I am so glad it is behind us! I can't tell you how many sleepless nights I've had just trying to cover all the details. Anyway, it was sweet and the kids had fun so that's what counts.

The purpose of the show is for the kids to buy an outfit at a thrift store for the cheapest amount and model it. We started the idea when some of our kids seemed embarrassed over having to shop at thrift stores. I would say now about 80% of them have no options due to their finances so we had more models than in prior years.

I learned some things from this event: 1) I am too old to be doing events like this unless I. . . (2) delegate, delegate, delegate and 3) kids are going to do what they want to do no matter how you practice so enjoy the mistakes!
(I cover their eyes as a privacy issue.)

 Some moved so fast, they were a blur in my camera lens.
 Hamming it up with his reversible jacket!
 Can you believe this dress for $3.99?!!!

 Even the belt was found at a thrift store.
 This beautiful dress had a label inside from a bridal shop...she got it for just $4.99.
 Local businesses sponsored tables.

Some precious place mats were made by our elementary students. We hope to get more for next year's show and eventually have enough to re-use every year instead of needing new ones with each event.
The community really came together for this event. It is not a fundraiser, but we don't want to go into the hole for it either. We ended up making over $400 with expenses running around $65. How cool is that?!
Also last week was our school's speech tournament. We are the last school in our area to offer speech to the students. It is run by volunteers after school. There were about 50 students who took part in the practices every week. An amazing thing for us.
Sadly, this is the last year for speech to be offered. Unless some volunteers step forward to continue on with the program. Our PTO sponsored their end of the year party which will be next week. They had a small budget for trophies.
I have to admit, when I sat in on the serious speeches, I was crying so hard, I had to leave the room and blow my nose! The humorous had me laughing to make up for my sad tears! These kids were wonderful.
So that was another late day for me....school got out at 2:05 and I didn't leave the building until 6:30! I would have stayed until midnight, they were that good.

Trust me, the only time these two are shy is when a camera is near!

 These kids really got into their speeches. They used body language and some of them even spoke with accents! The southern drawls were a hoot.
They all dressed up and looked so nice.

The finals were posted and everyone ran to see if they made it to the last round or not.

And then......and then...... the trophies and ribbons.

And tonight? We have company coming for dinner. Next weekend is a baby shower and something else I've already forgotten. In between I have to go to the dentist and the eye doctor. My eye is totally red - I think I get stressed out and it appears as this inflammation in my eye. It's okay... he only charges like $230 for a visit! Is that crazy or what? And yes, I have a huge deductible, just like everyone else I know. So it will all come out of pocket. It would be cheaper if I could learn not to stress over the details. But it is just how I'm made!
The good news is.... I'm down to 27 working days! Oh yeah!