Thursday, September 29, 2005

Young ambition


This morning he spent part of his time with play-doh and a spatula. We asked what he was doing and he said he wants to work at Taco Bell.

Huray for ambition!

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

yes, she loves this. Posted by Picasa

she'll always have a date to a sci-fi convention

Poor Emma, she took after Daddy. We have suspected for a while, and recently confirmed, that she inherited the gene responsible for love of science fiction. She is actually showing signs of being a full-bore girl-geek. She has always liked Star Wars, asking many questions about plot nuances, but that just puts you on the first plane of nerdiness... there were other signs along the way, other shows, other questions, and David and I would look at each other over her head..

Then came Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy, which we rented last weekend. She LOVES it, CRAVES it. So David dug around in his old books and found the two companion books (I of course can't remember the names of them, although the last one is something like Thanks for All the Fish) So that is what she is reading right now. I flipped through the one she's reading and it is hardcore sci-fi (to me).

David and I joked that she will always have the geek date locked up just in case the good looks ever give out.

If it turns out any of my kids have the gene enabling them to watch British Comedy like David does, I'm going to have to take action. That's just too much.

my mistake...

Just got around to reading the paper. It was 107 (One Hundred thousand and seven) yesterday.

just rambling.

Yesterday it was 105. One Hundred and Five. Damn!

I was seriously going to try cooking an egg on the street, but I was too busy running around with the kids to give it a try. Poor Max had a football practice yesterday 5:30 - 6:30. I left him there with a huge thermos thing full of ice water. I took Emma and Joey to the store and when we got back to pick him up, Max was still very chipper.

But he didn't want to eat, and by bedtime was nice and feverish. So he is sleeping in this morning. Poor fella'.

My big goal for the week is to get ready for Joey's party on Friday. Today is shot because of being nurse-mom, so that leaves Wednesday and Thurday to get down to business. Pressure is good, eh?

Monday, September 26, 2005

Yesterday, the official temperature at the airport was 108, and at Camp Mabry, less than a half a mile from my house it was 107.


It is late September and it feels like we are cooking! I went to a 4 year-old's birthday party at a pool early afternoon, and we could hardly walk around the pool, our feet were burning. The water felt tepid. Today it is only supposed to reach 103. oh goodie.


Friday, September 23, 2005

For some reason, I haven't got too many recent photos of old Max. I'll try to fix that this month.... Posted by Picasa

Joey IS a pretty, pretty princess (and he cheats when we play so that he always wears the crown!) Posted by Picasa

Emma and Caroline and unidentified high school girl Posted by Picasa

Tonight Emma and Caroline got to attend a dance clinic with the Austin High School Red Jackets. They got to practice with the big girls after school and perform at halftime.  Posted by Picasa

I love red Keds. And Joey has gotten too big for them, boo hoo. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, September 18, 2005

name dropping again....

OK, so I had an exciting evening.

My friend, Anne, called me a week ago and asked if I would be free this evening. "Yes..." I said.

She said I could come along with her to a party---a party at Liz Carpenter's house. "Yes Anne, I am free!"

Tonight was the night. I was ready to go about an hour before Anne got here. Two other friends went along with us, and it turns out that Liz Carpenter lives just a few houses away from an intersection I drive by frequently. We got there a little early -- Anne said it would be easier to see all the pictures before the house got too crowded.

We walked in and Liz was settling into her chair at the door. Meeting her was like greeting a queen. She was very gracious. Her house was unpretentious, but had a killer view of downtown Austin. On every shelf and tabletop were awards and autographed photos. Liz with Bill Clinton, Liz in a ballroom at a state dinner, a portrait of living ex-presidents and their wives including Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush Sr with all their autographs!, Liz with the Queen Mother:Elizabeth I, many of Lady Bird Johnson-- who she worked for as press sectretary, an autographed portrait of LBJ who she wrote a speech for -- the same speech he said when he got of the plane carrying JFK after he was shot -- the speech where he announced to the country that a president had died....from an article I found online:

"On Nov. 22, 1963, she was riding in a police car across Dallas to Air Force 1, when “it occurred to me that I was the only writer aboard.” She knew that Johnson would need to make a public statement within the next few hours. “And the words just came.”

She scribbled out on one of Lady Bird Johnson’s autograph cards, “This is a sad time for all people. We have suffered a loss that cannot be weighed. For me, it is a deep, personal tragedy. I know that the world shares the sorrow that Mrs. Kennedy and her family bear. I will do my best. That is all I can do. I ask for your help — and God’s.”

It was as though the words had come to her “by a Guiding Hand,” she says.
After the plane touched down at Andrews Air Force Base in Washington, D.C., newly sworn-in President Johnson delivered those words to the awaiting microphones and cameras and, as she wrote later, “I knew that they were right.”

Here is a wonderful article if you are curious about this lady.....

Oh yeah, and when she looked at me and asked that one of the "youngsters" bring water in to an older couple in the living room, I jumped. I went outside where they had a drink station set up, picked up water bottles and headed back into the house. A kind, older gentleman opened the door for me, his nametag said "Cactus". When he introduced himself as Cactus Pryor, I just said, "um, yes, I know... " Very fun.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Life of Pi

I just finished reading a book called Life of Pi. And now I need to talk to someone else who's read it. I'm a little confused, it was a great novel, made me think a lot, but I need to clear up a few questions.....

Friday, September 16, 2005

post script Friday

The day ended very nicely.

I got an email inviting me to join some of the book club gang at the park for a mom's birthday celebration. We sipped beer, pina coladas, and 'ritas, and ate popcorn, chips and cheesecake. The kids played. Periodically we would be chatting and one of the moms would bellow out a command to get the kids to stop kicking each other or throwing rocks. Then we would continue the conversation.

Eventually we turned our backs to the playground (to avoid the sun) and we didn't even need to bellow anymore.

Just what the doctor ordered.


So how sad it this?

I'm riding around today after a satisfying a busy week of volunteer obligations. In the last 48 hours, I hosted a teacher luncheon at the elementary school, sent an email out for a church group, and held a brownie meeting. Today, for some reason, was free.

I went to a parent's coffee at the pre-school, then free from the responsibility of caring for kids, I drove to get a new pair of Cowboy boots -- before the gift card I got for Christmas last year expires!

Around 10:30 I was driving from the boot store toward the house and all of a sudden I started craving bar-b-q. A strong craving -- I hope I'm not pregnant! So I called a friend to see if she wanted to meet me for an early lunch (10:45!), and didn't reach her. I pulled into the parking lot of Green Mesquite, and I was the only car there. There were people moving around inside, so I knew I could get in... I went in and asked if they were open. Yes, but the meat for the day isn't quite finished yet and the kitchen is just getting pulled together. They asked if I could wait 10 minutes. I said yes.

So I sat. I guess pre-11:00 is when the work gets done and as bus boys carried cups to the drink station, they would glance my way. Waitresses were reporting to work, and they glanced at me waiting for my meat-brunch. Anyway, if finally came out, and I scurried out the door. I drove as fast as I could to the house and by 11:15 I was chowing down.

Now it is almost 2 and I am sleepy, knowing that the kids are due home in 30 minutes. I need a nap.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Google heaven

OK. What did I do before Google?

These days, I'll be brushing my teeth and I'll think about some dumb show I saw as a child. I have to stop what I'm doing, head to the computer and play the game of deciding how to word my search to find an image or blog or list about the very show I remembered. The Telezonia image above was a real find. After conferring with my sister, we realized my earlier posting, talking about Reddy Kilowatt riding the power lines to my house, in an old school film, from my elementary school days, was wrong.

It wasn't Reddy! It was a freaky marionette puppet who rode the PHONE lines from Telezonia right to my own phone! The same puppeteer made a movie for Bell about sharing party lines, and then another weird one involving a goat. I remembered seeing all of them! They were all produced in the 40's which tells you that if only the party line hadn't gone out of fashion, Fort Worth Independant School District might still be showing them today. That show was thirty years old when I saw it. That means West Handley kids today might be watching films from the mid 70's.

Perhaps they see movies about the strange and wonderful hippies on LSD trips. That would dovetail nicely with the freaky marionettes! Or about UNIVAC computers that can divide four digit numbers! Or about the wonders of walking on the moon (OK, that still seems wonderful). Anyway, my point being, it is possible my education was seriously compromised in 1970 with outdated information. And now my old, memory-impaired brain is cluttered with images of freaky puppets, phone party lines, Reddy Kilowatt, and Luno the magic horse statue that turns into a real flying horse.

No wonder I can't remember my kids' birthdates, the names of almost every adult I meet, and obligations right and left.

Thank heaven for Google --I'll always be able to look the forgotten stuff up.

Telezonia Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Rainy days at West Handley Elementary c. 1970

This is a website I stumbled across trying to find old cartoons from my formative years at West Handley Elementary. I wonder if they have the one about the little boy who earns a dollar and goes to town and spends it. The film follows the dollar around to the storekeeper, the farmer, and all the other people in our chain of interdependance.

I saw that they had "Duck and Cover" which helped us in Fort Worth to get ready for the next tornado which was right around the corner.

I'm wondering if the Drivers Ed films are the ones I saw, with the day that everything went wrong: hood of car flies up while you drive, kid runs into street in front of you, no brakes, all of which I am trained for, should they occur.

I don't see the Reddy Kilowatt show that has him dancing on the high voltage lines right to my own living room Hi Fi Stereo.

I also don't see my favorite Disney produced series "I'm No Fool". Where the F-O-O-L does everything wrong and YOU does everything just right.... so affirming!

Don't even get me started on all my favorite cartoons, why did it take mankind so long to invent the video recorder??!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

We have a game here at the house called Pretty Pretty Princess. It is now Joey's favorite game. Emma lets him "win" on purpose, so that she can dress him up! Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 12, 2005

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Actually, this is much more true to tonight's activities.... Posted by Picasa

The tower is orange!

Hey Mack! That's not hook 'em horns....What a great game tonight, way to go Longhorns!Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Living as a Substitute Teacher

Yesterday was a new experience for me. I had my first circle time. Those of us not born in the last 8? 10? years were not exposed to the circle time concept. Or maybe it was just those of us born in East Fort Worth. Circle time is used in school with younger kids, I think, as a way to measure how squirmey they are. Anyway, yesterday I was a substitute teacher (assistant teacher) to the pre-kindergarten class at Joey's preschool.

I had thought this would be a nice little side business. I'm pretty immune to other peoples' kids causing me stress, not completely, mind you, but pretty immune. And it is a job I can give thumbs up or thumbs down to depending on my schedule. And when I walk out of the door of the school to come home, I'm completely done. No carry-over stress. That was the big benefit. And, of course it's a bit of extra money. I figured for each morning I work, 9:00-1:00, I've paid for a month of tap lessons. Yippee.

It was fairly easy. I've discovered that pre-k kids really aren't ready for kindergarten yet. I've discovered that the ratio of teachers to kids at a private kindergarten (3 teachers to 20 kids) is much more in the adults' favor than at public school (1 teacher to 22 kids). But then again this was pre-k and in kindergarten at Good Shepherd, I think it is 2 teachers to a class.

Anyway, the most interesting thing I learned is that it must be a universal play factor that when kids are making up a game, and assigning themselves roles, (at school, it was Star Wars Kids) all the poor parents are dead! That's because children are always, ALWAYS orphans while they play. It happens here at my house when Emma and her friends make up a game. Almost anywhere I overhear what they are dreaming up, I'm dead.

It must be some universal strategy to insure the kids are in charge with no one but them controlling the story line. Anyway, I hope it's that and not mean revenge thinking against all us big people. But when one little pre-k girl basically told me to tell it to the hand yesterday, maybe there's more than one reason I wasn't alive at recess.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

What do you wish for.

Today, Joey and I were just chatting in the car. I asked him, "Do you wish you could fly?"

He said, "I wish Gloria (his toy hippo) was alive"

Then we talked all about what they would do. Would she talk, would she snuggle up with him, what would she eat, how would her voice sound. He'd obviously given it quite a bit of thought. I asked if he would also like to fly, and he said no, just Gloria.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Busy with normal.

Wow, I guess it's been a week or so since I last posted something. It's been so busy here, and it seems like just normal life, nothing noteworthy. I just couldn't get excited enough to sit down and bore you.

We've been watching all the New Orleans news, like everyone else in America. What a shocking tragedy. I talked to our school principal and he told me that we admitted two new kindergarteners from New Orleans. The school expects more will come, but like all of us, no one knows just what will happen next.

Max started Flag Football. It's his first time at that sport and he might have found his niche. It helps that he is built more like a linebacker than a gangly basketball guy. They have him at center and he is pretty solid. Years of playing tag in our front yard have paid off. He is a squirmy runner naturally and his skillful evasive wiggling helps him grab flags and avoid losing his own. One of the moms brought iced washcloths to the practice for the boys to cool off with and the guys just loved them- they wrapped them around their necks until they found out that they make icy cold whips... It has been incredibly hot at 5pm when the practices start, so there are lots of whipping water breaks!

Emma started Hip Hop dance again, and had a first Brownie meeting this week. She is in the school groove, making new friends this year, and really enjoying the homework and classes. When she is at home she is eternally grilling me on getting drawings going for her new bedroom, or talking about what kind of earrings she wants, since I am caving in on that later request.

Joey is still reluctant to leave the car in the mornings, but seems to like school once he gets in there. His teacher gives me good reports, but I am bracing for the fall conference in October when I will hear the words "willfull, determined, and strong personality." Hopefully tongue touching with classmates will be resolved by then.

David has been working round the clock on his project's deadline. So he comes home for a quick meal and heads back up till late in the night. He has really been running ragged.

And I try to not stress out and yell at my family as the schedule keeps us all a little too busy.

And then I watch the news. And I think it's pretty lucky to have a bathroom to clean, and kids in a routine, and a husband in a job. We are busy at being normal, and lucky, even though the rest of the time we just don't notice. I can hardly believe the news stories about mothers who have been separated from kids, and that husband who lost his wife in the flood. It puts the petty day-to-day gripes into perspective.

Hang in there, New Orleans brothers and sisters. We are all praying for you and hoping to help. And everyone I know is appreciating our boring, normal, too busy lives more than we ever did before.