Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Repost...go ahead and do it to....

Just saw this on Gidget's blog and needed to repost this.  I agree with the power of positive thinking so maybe we can all help out here...
I saw this on someone else's blog this morning. It warmed my heart, even though it's sad. It's the holiday season, y'all. Help a bleep in need.


My name is brandy. And I have a blog.

And a plea.

I use my blog to showcase the crazy I meet everyday, share the stories of the kids I teach and document my love for tequila, dairy products and the abdominal muscles of Ryan Reynolds. Rarely do I talk about personal issues on my blog- as personal as the dude that I adore (who I actually met through my blog- single ladies, let that be a very good reason to blog, the possibility of meeting someone as wonderful as my man), but I need your help. And it involves my dude.

He’s a guy who made math comics for my class, so they would love learning about addition. He’s the kinda guy who sends my friends gift cards when they are having hard times, who remembers every story I ever told him, who was the first person I celebrated with when I got a teaching job. He’s the guy who sent flowers to me at school- dozens of my favourite pink roses just because he loves me. He’s a guy who has spent a year patiently explaining (and re-explaining) everything there is to know about football during the important games when silence is preferred. He’s made me word puzzles and comics and stayed up late playing Scrabble with me (even though I beat him almost every time). He’s listened to me cry about school and family and jobs. He is everything I never knew I needed and everything I always knew I wanted.

The holidays have hit us hard. He’s recently been told he may have something called multiple myeloma- an incurable cancer, that gives a person an average of five years of continued life. Though this news has came as a shock, he continues to be exactly who has always been- spending his time worrying about me, rather than worrying about himself. He’s the most selfless individual I know- (he stayed late on Christmas Eve to work, so his co-workers could leave early) and a post like this would never be something that he would promote or encourage but when I’m overwhelmed and feeling helpless, the blogging community has always given me tremendous support and comfort, two things I desperately need at this time.

As I write this, the future is uncertain and we aren’t sure what’s happening. He’ll need to see an oncologist soon, to verify what’s going on in his body. My hope is that everyone who reads this think positive thoughts and if you are a person who prays, could you add him to your list? (You can refer to him as ‘brandy’s hot awesome dude’). If you don’t pray, please keep him in your heart.This cancer is only a possibility and I believe that the prayers and positive thoughts of people can make sure it never becomes a reality.

I want to give a big thank you to the blog owner who scraped their original blog plans and graciously put this up. My goal is to get as many people as possible to see and read this post. If you are reading this and want to help, copy and paste my plea into your blog or send a link through twitter, so more people can keep him in their thoughts. I would be so very grateful (even more grateful than I am to my friend who first showed me the picture of Ryan Reynolds on the cover of Entertainment Weekly. If you haven’t seen it, google it. You. Are. Welcome).

I realize this all sounds dramatic, a Lifetime movie in the making- but this is life. Right now. And I’m throwing away any hint of ego and am humbly asking for you to pray or think kind thoughts. If you are able to pass this on, thank you and if you know anything regarding MM- please email me (my email is on my blog). This isn’t a call for sympathy or a plea for pity. It’s just one girl hoping you can think positive thoughts for the person she adores. If my current heartache provides you with anything, let it be with the reminder that life is short, love is unbending and no one knows what could happen next. Maybe it is silly, but I really do believe that positive thoughts can make a huge difference. Thank you for reading this and if you haven’t already? Please tell someone you love them today.

I did.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A boss, a gopher, and all around craziness...

I owe you, my dear bleeps (all 7 of you), an apology. I have been holding things back from you. In my defense I’ve been holding back this information because I didn’t want to whine and complain to all of you. I now realize, however, that by depriving you of my whining I am also depriving you of some pretty hilarious stories. So here goes nothing…

I work in a loony bin.

First, a bit of background. I have always worked in loony bins. I taught high school science for gosh sakes! Last June, to my dismay, I was laid off from my job and was left unemployed about two weeks away from my wedding. Sweet. Now, my master’s degree is in curriculum design and I was a bit jaded about the whole laid off thing, so I decided to take a job that involved me being out of the classroom designing curriculum and programming for teachers. I thought it sounded amazing. I pictured myself brainstorming with equally excited teachers to develop kick ass programs. I saw myself kindly guiding teachers through these programs and helping them to become better teachers. I saw lots of excited students involved in these programs. It was heavenly.

Fast forward to today….I work in a cubicle (I should take a picture) in a small department of 5 people (including myself) who are possibly all certifiably crazy….with the exception of myself, of course . I figured today I would just give you a brief introduction to two of the cast so that as stories come about I can tell them to you quickly and hilariously (because if I laugh at them it seems so much happier around here). I’ll introduce you to the other two cast members tomorrow so that this doesn’t turn into a super long post.

First there’s The Boss. The boss is a bitter woman who is approximately my mother’s age. She has kind of been in education most of her lift, although she has never taught. She mostly dealt with their technology setup….and now she’s giving the green light (or more often the red light) to our programs. She is most famous for bellowing from her office when she needs one of us. If you don’t answer right away, she doesn’t get up, she just bellows louder…in her deep, somewhat manly, voice. She is also notorious for her high standards…that change on a daily basis. Put together a fantastic summary of a program for her that she throws praise at on Monday and on Tuesday it’s a virtual piece of poop. Never can tell what you’re going to get with the boss…

Then there’s The Gopher. The gopher has been with the company for longer than any of us with the exception of the boss and is kind of my superior (though that’s never been totally spelled out…just a notion that I get). The gophers cube is directly behind mine and no matter how I angle my computer he can see what I’m doing…if he pops his head up…which is all the time (hence the name). In his defense, I think he’s just lonely. He’s in his late 20s, lives by himself, and spends every weekend at his mother’s house. And judging by the amount of time he talks, he must not have anyone to talk to at home. Kinda sad. What’s even sadder (more sad, whatever) is that normally I love to talk. But with the gopher you can’t get a word in edgewise. If you could manage to get a thought out in the middle of a conversation with him, I’d pay you lots of money…because it just doesn’t happen. So you just kind of sit there, smile, nod, and think about what you’re going to be doing after work that day.

Stay tuned tomorrow…for the second two cast member who are equally (if not more) bizarre.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

I Heart My Hubby

For lots of reasons, but this weekend has been one for the books.  Hubby and I tend to take on a bit more traditional gender roles...not that I mind.  So this weekend has been filled with gift wrapping, cookie baking, cleaning, and cuddling with the kitties in my nice, warm, cozy house.  For hubby this has meant braving the outdoors.  We got some snow last night and as we speak this is him...

I on the other hand am plunked in front of my computer, coffee in hand, pjs on...hmmmm.  And yesterday my dad and hubby installed new garage doors for us.  Here's the before.  They were original to the house (so 1965....or 56...my dyslexic tendencies are kicking in) and were in pretty rough shape.

This is dad and hubby working on the new doors in the frigid cold.  Really.  The temps were in the teens and they were handeling metal...with their bare hands.  What men!

And thanks to their hard work...we have beautiful new doors....

I just re-read this post and realized that I sound like a complete lazy a#@.  So in my defense I did do quite a bit of work inside and cheered on my tough guys with soup and hot chocolate along the way.  And as a side note, if you're in the CT area and are looking for a good garage door guy, I could easily recommend one to you...he does good work!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Science Friday: It's Back!

I figured that I'd bring back this little tidbit of knowledge on Fridays because I (maybe) have some sciency people that are reading this that may be interested.  So, without further ado....

Hunger-Stopping Smells

If you don't feel like reading the whole thing, the jist is that scientists are looking at how smells influence how full we feel.  The idea is that if certain aromas trigger us to feel full then by making foods have more of these aromas we will eat less.  Ah, the power of chemistry.  A few things about this concern me though.  What about those people who eat normally and don't have issues with stopping their food intake (certainly not me!)?  Will this cause them to eat less than they should?  The other thing is that the human body ceases to amaze me...it's super adaptable.  Would this have any effect on how we eat food or want food?  And last but not least...my biggest concern...

If we make foods smellier...will we all have awful breath all the time?  Ugh....

Thursday, December 17, 2009

My motto

MamaKat's Writer's workshop this week was to describe your personal motto.  For anyone who knew me back in high school you would know that I had my "philosophies".  I would scour quote books and the internet and write down any inspirational quotes that I came across on little pieces of paper in colorful markers and tape them to my bedroom walls.  I wish I could find a picture because (looking back) it was pretty funny.  The moral of that is that I LOVE quotes.  So I sat down to think about what my mottos was....and then I looked at my blog title.  Duh!  Guess that kind of speaks for itself. 

Dream Big became my motto a few years back when it became my liscense plate.  I was fresh out of college, had just moved in with then-boyfriend/now-hubby, and was living away from mommy and daddy for the first time.  Life was a big, new, exciting world.  So Dream Big it was....and dream big I did....

I find it a little harder to dream big sometimes these days.  Don't get me wrong, life is good.  I am a happily married, new homeowner with a great job.  Nothing to sneeze at.  But with all of the real life hassles (bills, work, big girl problems, did I mention bills?) I sometimes lose site of dreaming big.  Sometimes reality can get in the way of all of those dreams.  But, despite that, I think it's important to always dream and think big...after all...."Reach for the moon....even if you miss you'll still be among the stars!" (Yeah for old high school quotes there!)

Any of you have any mottos???

Monday, December 14, 2009

I have a dream...

…to be a runner. Dream big, right?

I was always an athlete growing up. I was a gymnast and a springboard diver and I enjoyed a lot of other sports recreationally. I’m the kind of person that isn’t the most amazing athlete, but can hold her own in most athletic endeavors. Except for running….
I have always envied the lithe people that jogged along the road and looked all light and springy on their feet. I envy the people who love to run so much that they drag themselves out of their toasty warm beds at ungodly hours of the morning and run in the rain/snow/sleet. I envy the cute little running outfits that they wear and the fact that when they wear their cute little running spandex you can’t see their entire leg jiggle and quiver. I want to be them…
….and I’ve never been one to back down from a challenge. Those who know me know that when I get my mind wrapped around something I will plan for it excessively and will more than likely see it through to completion (barring any unforeseen circumstances). I’m the girl that had her entire college course schedule planned out her first week of freshman year. So here we go.

I’ve decided that I want to run a half marathon. I’m not quite crazy enough to try a full marathon (yet) but figure a half will be a good thing. And the more people I tell them more likely I am to actually do it. So I, KRadz, will be completing the Iron Horse Half Marathon on June 6, 2010. There. I said it. I’ve even signed up to run my first 5K race already!

I told hubby that I was going to be doing this and I think he was actually a bit proud. He even brought it up in conversation with some friends randomly. I have also wanted a cute, kicky, short hairstyle but have never been able to do so because I carry around a bit too much extra weight in my already-very-round face. So….I have decided that when I finish my half marathon I will be getting that cute, kicky hairdo that I have always wanted.

I’ll try to keep this blog from turning into an all out running diary, but I can’t promise anything. I’m sure there will be plenty of hysterically funny stories that I can’t help but share with you all….and I'll probably need some encouragement from time to time, too. Wish me luck…

Friday, December 11, 2009

Holy Crap I Won Something....

So for starters I am a completely unlucky person.  Sure, I snagged one of the best guys in the world for my husband, but that's about the only think I have ever won (and I've entered many a contest).  So I recently took a bribe  entered a contest on Jill's blog and won!  If you haven't checked out her blog you really need to head there.  She's good for a smile pretty much any day.  So to my whopping 5 followers....go read her stuff....funny. And thanks Jill...wooh!

(Maybe I need to do one of these follower bribe things....would anyone let their buddies know?)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Irrational Woman...

I realize that I just posted about two minutes ago, but I needed to share this story with someone (preferably with people I don't see on a daily basis).  Let me preface this by saying that normally I am a very sane, intelligent, reasonable, independent person.  I can change my own tire, mow the lawn, teach a classroom full of high school students...you name it...i can handle it.  But sometimes when I am home alone....I lose it!  Fast forward to about 20 minutes ago...

I'm perusing people's blogs, reading about other people's lives and I hear this awful booming noise....sounded like a plow going by.  I look out the window...nothing.  Now remember, I'm home alone and also a new homeowner.  I immediatly think that maybe my pool collapsed (I know...no idea where that came from).  Check in the backyard....still standing.  Maybe something happened with the heat and there's now smoke or water or some other bad substance filling my house.  Check the whole upstairs....nothing.  Well if it isn't up here then it has to be downstairs.  Oh god!  My furnace must have exploded!  I tiptoe downstairs, dreading the ghastly scene that surely awaits me.  Of course, nothing there.  At this point I figure that I just need to get my heartrate back down so that I can think rationally, so I come upstairs and put on the news....just in time to hear the local weather man talking about thunder storms in the area....oh jeez.

I think this is in my future tonight...


First let me apologize for my lapse in blogging.  The holidays always seem to make me a bit frazzled.  Here's a quick catch-up of what's been going on around the Radz household.  We have our tree up....

We went to get out tree with my brother in law and his girlfriend at this massive tree farm in Northern CT.  It was more acres than I could accurately estimate and had so many trees.  As I stood and looked out over the rolling hills full of Xmas trees and watched all of the little rosy cheeked kiddos happily tree hunting I couldn't help but be in the xmas spirit.  About an hour later and probably 50,000 trees later I just wanted to have my tree.  The others had already found theres and I was tired of wandering aimlessly through acres of lovely smelling evergreens.  I had Keith hack down the nearest tree and I think it turned out quite nicely (maybe a little small, but it works).  The cats also seem to love the tree and have taken to watching tv from the tree skirt.  Either that or playing with the tree skirt to the point where I wake up in the morning and the tree skirt is in the kitchen and my living room is covered in little needles.  But they are just so darn cute!
We also had our first significant snowfall today!  Its so pretty out.  This is the first winter, however, that I don't have snowdays....and boy, oh boy, do I miss them.  I was looking at all of my teacher friends facebook statuses today and cursing the fact that they were in their cozy houses, making cookies, reading by the fire, or just plain old sleeping....grrr....

The bright side is that thanks to my lovely hubby I didn't have to shovel our driveway!  Being a homeowner isn't too bad (although he may think differently).  As for tonight, hubby is in NYC to watch the UCONN game and I plan on plunking on my couch to watch so you think you can dance and glee and finishing up all my xmas cards.  And with grilled cheese and soup for dinner, snowy New England days don't get much better than this :)

Just re-read this post...holy randomness....sorry!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas Spirit

I feel like a lot of people are having trouble finding their christmas spirit this year.  I feel like everywhere I turn people are saying that this xmas is tough to get into.  I personally am having a ltitle bit of trouble, too.  Normally at this time of year my shopping is done, my house is decorated, and my xmas cards are all filled out and waiting to be mailed.  I have put my tree up (which we actually cut down from a tree farm), but that's all that I have done in terms of decorating.  I have purchased exactly ONE xmas gift so far.  Horrible!  And I just started my xmas cards last night.  I'm not sure if its just been a hard year for everyone or if the weather is making it tough, but I thinik we all need to scrounge up some xmas spirit.  Now how to go about getting that done....

Any suggestions?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Writer's Workshop

Once again I’m going to attempt to respond to Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop…The prompt was to describe an ER moment so I figure that I’ll give you a few…

I am kind of a klutz (alright, that may be the understatement of the year!) and while I don’t have any funny stories while at the ER I have a few funny stories that have taken me to the ER. I figure I’ll share a few fun stories with you all. One involves me and the ER, the other involved a friend and the ER (the story is just too good to pass up.)
  1. Remember that I am a klutz. I was also a gymnast growing up and would frequently practice things around the house. I turned the railing on my deck into a balance beam, the arm of the couch into a vault, my swing set into uneven bars (you get the idea). I decided that it would be a brilliant idea to also turn our kitchen counter into a balance beam and to practice my new mount….while home alone….babysitting. Sadly enough, I was old enough to baby-sit when I did this…. In my infinite wisdom and grace I somehow managed to fall off the countertop backwards with my ass hitting the ground first. That hurt so badly that it was pretty much my focus. It wasn’t until my cousin looked and my sock and noticed the rapidly expanding red splotch (uh-oh). Turns out that I caught my heel on the (blunt) corner of our dishwasher. Emergency room here I come. The ER docs were impressed when I got there because I had actually hollowed out a huge chunk of my heel which is apparently quite the feat. Although it was pretty embarrassing to explain that yes, my 17 year old self had fallen off a counter while doing gymnastics….
  2. And apparently we don’t get smarter as we get older. Last year (so yes we are in our mid to late 20s here) hubby and I went up north with another couple friend to go skiing. We drove about 3.5 hours and got to the mountain to find the WORST conditions ever. People were trying to sell their lift tickets to us it was so bas so we decided to try something else. Girl Buddy knew someone in the area who had a cabin so we went to visit and ended up having a few beers. After a few beers it becomes a good idea to strap skis to your feet, build a massive jump, and attach a tow rope to a snowmobile (do you see where this is going?). One broken leg later we decided that it wasn’t such a good idea.

Hope you enjoyed a good laugh at my expense….any other good stories out there???

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Busy busy

Sorry for not posting in a while...I've been keeping myself busy with the new house!  I had a crazy busy weekend and for your viewing pleasure here are some before and after pictures.  Keep in mind that my house is currently a disaster area and that I don't have trim or curtains up in most rooms....

Here's a quick slideshow to show you some of our handiwork...

Notice that all of the walls/trim/ceilings were ALL the same color....at least that's improved.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Our dumb world...

I was looking through the bargain books at Barnes & Noble the other day and came across this beauty for only $5.

Apparently I am a bit more cynical than I thought I was (either that or my dry sense of humor is just kicking in) but this book is hysterical!  It's done by the Onion which is one of my favorite websites because it never fails to make me laugh and basically runs though all of the countries in the world and makes fun of them.  I'm not sure if I can post any excerpts for copyright reasons, but suffice it to say that if you are sarcastic you will LOVE this book.  And how can you beat $5!

In other news....I can't make my computer stop centering this type.  Hmmm....

In other other news....It's Trivia Tuesday so here's your super fun fact of the day.
The uncut stone that later became the Hope Diamond was smuggled from India to France in a horse's rectum.
I don't think I care....I'd still own it....and wear it (if that were possible).

And one more just because I think it's cool...
Fleas mate for life.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Help! I need ideas!

Alright bloggy folks…I have a challenge for you.

My cubicle at work needs help…desperately. I’ve never worked in an office environment before and now I have this sterile, gray cubicle that I’m finding depressing. I have minimal crafty vision and I know that some of you guys have some fantastic ideas/vision. Help!!!  How can I make my cube more homey?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Epic fail...

NaBloPoMo has turned into an epic fail. I haven’t posted in over a week (I think)! This got me thinking about other epic fails that have happened. Now, in my mind an epic fail isn’t this catastrophic, life changing event. Rather is it something goofy that you do over the course of an average day that’s pretty darn funny to look back on, but kind of sucks at the moment. Luckily for you all I have TONS of those (like last week when I managed to spill my entire glass of red wine into my soup bowl. Positive: no red wine stains….Negative: no red wine). Here’s a few that epic fails that I can think of off the top of my head.

1. Drunken Dancing - There isn’t a particular story behind this one, but instead encompasses pretty much every time I drink and decide that I can dance as well as beyonce. I can think of one time in particular at the campground that I was feeling pretty wonderful and decided to cut a rug at a campground dance (hmmmm). I thought I kicked ass and that this cute little girl was staring because I was sooooooo good. Right. In reality I think I probably looked a bit like Elaine from Seinfeld.

2. Falling in a Sink - I am a high school teacher. For those of you who have never had the privilege of stepping foot in front of a classroom, sometimes it takes a little looniness to gain their attention. In a past life I was a gymnast and I like to think that I still have some of that coordination. I am also horribly short and sometimes like making myself a little taller. My old classroom had lab benches that went all around the classroom and made for a perfect little elevated walkway. Until I stepped into a sink….and feel off said lab bench. I don’t think my kids remembered what I was teaching about at that moment.

3. Security Breach at Los Pantalones - Sometimes when teaching students will giggle at you when you get in front of the class. Usually this means that my pant leg is tucked into my sock or I spilled something on myself so I usually respond with a standard, “What…is my fly down?” Makes for a pretty funny moment when it actually is.

4. Locking myself on a 3rd floor deck…On a 90 degree day…in full sun…in my bathing suit….with no one home. I ended up having to break into my neighbors apt. by shimmying down the roof (in a two piece….cute) and breaking in to their window. Nice. Luckily they weren’t home and I walked away with burned feet, minor dehydration, and a great story!

How bout you guys? Any epic fails?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Trivia Tuesday #2

Today's trivia fact will probably gross some of you out.  If you are squeamish at all about your food, you may not want to read on.  You've been warned....

The FDA allows an average of 30 or more insect fragments and one or more rodent hairs per 100 grams of peanut butter.

Hehe...I told ya.  I personally don't really care though.  I've eaten a lot of peanut butter in my lifetime and I'm still alive.  I know that there's also a lot of other allowances that the FDA makes on food products (like various grade meats having certain fillers, etc.).  Again, I don't care.  I love myself a good old fashioned hot dog or a McDonald's hamburger (insect parts and all!). 

I actually wonder sometimes if we are too clean for our own good.  We use so many antibacterial products and overuse antibiotics to a point where not only are bacteria becoming resistant to these things, but we aren't helping out our immune systems.  In fact, allergy rates in "wealthy" nations are considerably higher than in poorer nations.  The thought is that we are so clean that our immune systems are attacking things like dust and pet dander rather than the bad bugs they should be attacking.  Hmmm....

Now that I'm off my soapbox...that really is just my excuse for why my house is a mess :)

Monday, November 2, 2009


I was inspired by this blog of a friend of mind to join in on NaBloMoPo (?...at least I think that's what its called).  All it means is that for the month of November you post every day.  I'm not sure that I have the ability to make that type of commitment (in addition to the fact that my life just isn't that interesting) but I'll give it a try.


What to say...

I had my cousin and my sister over last night for dinner.  It was fun and made me realize how much I missed being away.  There's nothing better than yummy beef stew that I didn't cook shared over some wine/beer with a side of good conversation.  I don't know if you really appreciate your family until you get older.  I have a very close family.  My mom is one of four girls all who had at least three children and who got the troops together for practially every holiday growing up.  Because of that I still have fantastic relationships with the majority of my cousins.  Growing up it was kind of a given that they'd always be around, but as we started to get older and move away that wasn't always the case.  I miss the big noisy holidays that seem to be happening with less frequency.  We always seem to end up at my aunt's for Thanksgiving though....wooh!

But where was I going with this?  Oh, right...I was making the point that its great to chat with people who have known you literally since you were born and who know all of your dirty laundry and still love you unconditionally.

In other news....I have officially been exposed to the swine....keep your fingers crossed that my teacher immune system is still in tact.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


I got two new kitties yesterday.  They are 9 weeks old and absolutly adorable.  They're brother and sister and they get along great!  They've been inseperable since we got them in the house and are finally starting to get a bit comfy.  This is Jinx... (he's a boy)

And this is Gemma... (she's a girl)

Think they like each other?

And they cuddle...so freakin cute!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Our weekend in NH...kinda

So I guess it wasn't really a weekend, it was just an overnight.  Consequently we didn't get to see everyone on our NH list, but it was alumni weekend for the soccer folks at SNHU so of course hubby and I went up.  Basically, any soccer alums are invited back to campus for a game with all the old alumni, followed by a little dinner, and then they watch the real soccer team play.  Since it was raining, not too many of the boys played in the rain but they all showed up for the real game and the mayhem to ensue.  It's funny how when the old teammates get together they resort to being the boys (not men) that they were in college.  It was silly.  There was lots of reminiscing, lots of drinking, some spilled booze, and good times.  Yeah!

I also learned first hand that our knives are very sharp last night.  I'm ok, no stitches or anything.  Sooo I'm a bit clutzy (that's the understatement of the year).  I trip over my feet several times a day, spill food on me practically ever time I eat, and somehow manage to walk into every pointy object within a 10 foot radius of my body (but I can still do a back flip...go figure).  Last night I was cutting some ciabatta bread (yum) with my brand new bread knife.  I did good...no catastrophies there.  I put the bread on the table, holding the VERY sharp knife the whole time....still good.  I put the knife down on the counter and proceeded to sweep all the little crumbs off of the counter and literally tapped my finger on one of the knife points.  Instant blood geiser!  I barely even touched the bugger and it sliced the tip of my ring finger pretty good (luckily the one redeeming quality about my red countertops is that they hide blood...hmmm).  Now everytime I type the letters "o" "l" or "." my finger hurts (that for example wasn't fun).  On that note, I'm out....my finger hurts :)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Writer's Workshop

One of the fabulous blogs that I read regularly called Mama Kat’s Losin It posts writers workshops. They’re prompts that give you something to think/write about. Usually they related to mommyhood/mommies and I’m never too sure what I would write about. However, I think I might give this a shot this week (and it even related to mommyhood…though not my own).

The prompt: Describe what makes you want to live a life with passion.

The response:

I’m not really sure if this will answer the question, but it got me thinking about my passions. One of them is teaching (I’m not currently in the classroom, but hopefully I’ll be back there sometime soon). Prior to my current job in education, I was a high school science teacher. Unlike most, I can’t pinpoint the exact moment that I knew I wanted to teach. It just kind of happened. I had been teaching for a few years and felt like I was doing a good job at educating my students, but wasn’t sure if I was really “reaching” them (like all teachers hope they are). I related to them, we had fun, they learned…but would they remembering something that they had learned from me sometime down the road. One day at the end of the day, a secretary poked her head into my room about 5 minutes before the end of the school day. She said there was a young mom downstairs who wanted to talk to me and had been waiting downstairs for over a half hour for my class to be over. Could she come up? Of course!( I said).

At this point, I had already had several young moms come through my classroom and had seen many leave and not come back. I was trying to figure out who this could be, when she walked into my room with the most adorable little boy I had ever seen….and I couldn’t remember her name. Wow. Bad teacher. I did, however, remember the girl just nothing too specific. We visited and chatted about how life was, etc. and then she got to the point. She wanted to tell me personally that she had earned her GED and was starting nursing classes at a local college…all as a single mom. I was impressed, but had to ask her why she wanted to tell me…after all I hadn’t seen her in a few years. She said, “Don’t you remember Miss B.? You told me that I had a good head on my shoulders and that I couldn’t let it go to waste.” In retrospect, that is verbatim what I probably said to her one day when she hadn’t done her homework. Not in relation to her current situation.

It was at that point that I realized that my work really does have an impact on other people. I realized that the little encouragements and praise that people give to each other really stick with someone. I also realized that you never know what people need to hear. Now, I’m not perfect, but after that I tried really hard to take time for each of my students personally. Sure, there are times where I wanted to whack them upside the head (but I would have gotten fired for that) and there were times when I had to say things that the kids didn’t want to hear, but I’d like to think that I helped out at least one other person along the way.

My passion is people, not just teaching. Don’t forget that what you say really can make a difference.

Whew….long winded and deep….I’ll try to find something funny to post tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Some thoughts on my (our) first house

I realize that I have been neglecting the blog world over the past week or so, but in my defense we have been moving. We have officially slept in our new house for a few nights so considering that I have a few thoughts to share...
  1. Our house is DARK!  There are no streetlights on the road so when we go to bed and there are no lights in it is dark to the point where you can't see your hand.  I've stubbed my toe twice already and woke up in a state of panic because I had no idea where I was.  At the age of 27 I may have to invest in my first nightlight.
  2. Waking up on Sunday morning to MY sunday paper in MY mailbox and drinking coffee from MY new dishes in MY new living room was really cool (notice a theme there?).  I was happy...
  3. I LOVE the color in my kitchen.  I am very proud of myself.  Check it out...
  4. I am mostly proud of myself because I am horribly indecisive when it comes to these things.  I don't really have a style (I don't think) so I'm usually not really sure where the end result is headed.  To illustrate this point this is our entryway.  Each of those white spots was a test sample that I tried, then primered over.  I tried a few more before I finally picked a color for out there.
  5. Again, going with the not sure of my style....I bought some curtains for the living room, though I don't think they go with the kind of traditional theme I was going with.  But they're young and fun and I think I like them.
  6. And finally...my husband is amazing (I already kind of knew that, but this just proves it).  We were getting a weak, unsecured internet signal from a neighbor's house but it wasn't strong enough to stay on.  Hubby rigged up this satellite dish out of tin foil and set our reciever in the middle.  It worked!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The first ever Trivia Tuesday

I have recently been inspired by other blogs and by my love for useless knowledge to start a Trivia Tuesday. Yeah! Each Tuesday I’ll post a random factoid that will amuse you and will hopefully help me get better at that Trivia game they have at Slider’s and Black Bear Saloon…here goes…

Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning

Not sure about you, but that makes me a little bit depressed. I looooove my coffee/tea in the morning and I think it’s way more soothing than eating an apple. On the other hand, an apple in the morning would probably be much healthier. I think that I’m going to try an experiment over the next week (I’ll report back to you on Tuesday next week). I’m going to try to go a whole week without a morning cup of coffee and I’ll eat an apple instead. This could be interesting….

In other news, we close on our first house tomorrow! I’m super excited (though a little bit nervous too…guess I won’t be totally comfortable until I have that key in my hand). I’ll be posting the before pictures up here tomorrow night or Thursday morning. Stay tuned!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The wedding

Here's the slideshow from the wedding (it's pretty long). If you'd like to see the slideshow that our photographer did just click on the link below!


Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Pre-Wedding Events

I'm going to do these wedding posts in three seperate sections (so I don't overwhelm anyone).  We have literally over 1,000 pictures of the whole wedding process so its taking me a while to sift through them.  This slide show is the lead-up stuff.  It starts with my shower which I've already posted about (scroll down!).  That was such a blast!  Then you have a few from our pre-wedding party.  Keith and I wanted to just have a little barbecue cookout for our wedding party to thank them for all the time they put into planning our special day.  Last is the rehersal and our nail appt.  No one thought to take pics at the rehearsal dinner so I don't have any of those, but that was at Smokin' with Chris' in Southington.  It's a great barbecue joint that smokes all their food (delicious!)  Totally recommend it if you're in the area.  Anyways, here's the slideshow.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Science Friday #1!!!

I do plan on doing an update on this blog (about the wedding and the honeymoon) at some point this weekend when I can go through my pictures and pick out some of my favorites to show you have everything went. In the meantime, in my effort to become better at regularly posting things I have decided to have a few theme days! Playing off of NPR’s Science Fridays, I’ll be posting my own Science Fridays.

Those of you who know me know that I am a complete science nerd. I love all kinds of science (particularly life sciences) and try to get everybody around me to like science, too. I’m also missing being a teacher and sharing all of my neat current events with my students, sooo…you guys get to be my students (you lucky ducks!) Here’s the first article…

Brain Scans Reveal What You've Seen
I saw this on CNN and on ScienceDaily so it must be good. Basically (if you don’t feel like reading) scientists are able to use a technology called fMRIs which measure the blood flow through different parts of your brain and can use that data to determine what types of pictures you were looking at. Obviously they can’t get too detailed and it’s still in its multiple choice phase, but I find this kind of creepy. Fascinating, but creepy. Given that science knowledge increases on an exponential scale (meaning that the more we know the faster we learn more) I wonder what this technology would be able to do in 5, 10, or 20 years? Is this the kind of thing that one day would make our lie detector tests obsolete because we could just plug someone in to an fMRI machine and know their thoughts? What would happen to our privacy? Our copyright laws? Creative licensure? What do you think?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A big 'ol sigh of relief...

I was laid off from work about 3 weeks ago. It sucked. Royally. I have tried to keep this fact quiet because I was petrified that I'd be out of work for a while and the last thing that I wanted was everyone talking about how I was unemployed at the wedding and hearing how sorry people are over and over again. No offense or anything, but sorry's aren't going to get me a job or earn me money.
The reason that I can finally say that I got laid off is because i got a new job! I'm super excited about it too. First, in case you don't know, I was a teacher and I have been saying that I wanted to be a teacher for as long as I can remember. Sure, I went through various dream careers including archeology, pharmacology (those were my dream jobs anwyays...what...they weren't yours too?), but for a large chunk of that time I have wanted to be a teacher. And for the past 5 years I have loved being a teacher. My career aspirations, though, have always been to be a "teacher's teacher". In fact, according to my mom, I decided at the age of 6 that "someone had to teach teachers so that's what I wanted to do). Up until a few weeks ago I figured that someday I'd end up teaching at a college in the education department.
When I started looking for jobs I decided to peek on monster. com just to see what was out there and ran across an "education specialist" position at the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technologies. I applied on a whim....come to discover it's a pretty cool job. I went on 3 interviews an (wooh) got a job! I'll basically be designing teacher workshops/student programs that encourage students to enter into science/engineering/technology jobs. I get to get kids excited about science! How cool! So I'm jumping right into this...I start next Thursday. Can't wait!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Amazing blog!

So 2 posts in one day...clearly I am procrastinating on writing all those thank you notes from the shower. I just came across the most amazing blog ever if you grew up the 90s. http://childrenofthenineties.blogspot.com/ enjoy a good laugh!

I was showered!

My shower was this past Sunday. How amazing! I have to admit, I was completely nervous and a bit guilty about the fact that people had bought me so many gifts (the table was covered...and so was the floor beneath it!). Luckily, once I got over that initial nervousness it was wonderful. Good job mom and Mrs. R.! It was help at a golf course in town and we had a lunch-time banquet complete with salads, finger sandwiches, sweet tea, and spiked punch. With the sweet tea I felt like we were down south. After that we did gifts and I was completely blown away with how generous everyone is. I got everything that I could have asked for and more and some people were so clever. Keith's aunt and I are both avid readers and talk books a lot. She found this website www.booksbyyou.com where you choose a book, enter in information about people and then you get back a book that is personalized. She got Keith and I a book about race car owner (me) and her new driver (Keith) and their romance....ooooh! I doubt Keith will ever read it but it's so cute. I am also completely stocked to have the biggest party ever....so details on that will be forthcoming I guess. :) The shower was also good practice for the wedding day. I got kind of used to being the center of attention and learned that I need to not make so many faces. My poor cousin was trying to take pictures and managed to get a stupid picture of me practically every time! Might be tough to get good wedding pictures if I keep that up. Next wedding related thing is my final dress fitting next weekend. I can't wait!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The troops are getting restless

May is on the horizon. That combined with the warm weather mean that my students are going nuts! The end of the year is always rough. I usually am ready for summer as much as my students are, but I have to somehow make them think that I want to be in school doing school work and that what we are doing is vitally important (when I know in my mind that whether they remember the name of Darwin's ship is not going to make or break their future). Always fun...

Now sometimes the kiddos are clever. Yesterday one of the kids left school during 8th period (which is wrong, but he did have a study so at least he didn't skip class) and put a tarp in the back of his pickup truck, filled it with water, and drove back to school. This must have been planned in advance because half of the senior class had on their bathing suits and they had a "redneck hot tub party" after school. Innocent fun. It got me thinking about the silly things that we used to do back in high school that adults probably shook their heads at, but that made us laugh. Like the time in Chem class (not sure if you've heard this story Allison) where we were tye-dying clothes and our teacher told us we could tye-dye anything we wanted. Me and a buddy bought in underwear and sports bras. Or the times we used to go sneak into the local YMCA camp after dark to slide down the super long slide (in defense of my coolness it was a long slide that went down the side of a huge hill....and we had Wendy's trays).

Those innocent fun things are the reason that I love teaching high school kids. So much better than the doofus that thinks its fun to come to school drunk or high. Kiddos like that really grind my gears (family guy anyone?) In other news....actually can't think of any other news. So until I can think of something witty....bye

Monday, April 20, 2009

Starting to Feel It

Welp, we're 3 months it and the stress is finally kicking in. I'm doing a pretty good job keeping a cool exterior, but really I'm becoming a bit undone. That doesn't mean that I'm having second thoughts or cold feet or anything. I'm very sure of my decision to marry Keith. It's all the other stuff. Financially I'm not really sure how this is going to fall into place (I'm sure it will and I'm trying not to drive myself crazy, but it's a bit scary). And all those little details that I keep saying I can't do until later are finally here. Everyone keeps telling me to enjoy the process and all the highs and lows that go with it and i'm really trying to keep that in mind.
I'm having fun with some parts of it...I have my final fitting next month and these little meeting with our minister are actually pretty enjoyable. The parts that are getting to me are who to invite, who to have bring guests, and where to seat everyone. I'm also getting VERY anxious about my shower. I hate being the center of attention (I know, I teach...should be used to it, but this is different). My mother wanted to keep the date a surprise, but she ended up telling me which is for the better as now I don't have to worry about that. Now that I know when it is I just have to gear myself up for it. I know that it'll be fun, but I have a tendency to act strange when I know people are watching and to get a bit short tempered. I'm realizing that that sounds kind of selfish. After all, all those people are coming out for me and Keith and that's special....and I am appreciative...just a bit anxious. Bottom line is that I understand when people say that they just can't wait for it to get here. I'm tired of thinking about it already....

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ho hum...

Not sure what to post about as I've been feeling a bit ho hum lately. This time of year always seems to drage for. March always seems interminable and then the weeks in April before break seem like they'll never end! Luckily for me, March is over and vaca starts Friday...wooh. Keith actually has Friday off too, which is practically the first day that he's had off (with the exception of Xmas and New Years) since he started. That's a looooong time to work without even a day off and I know he's not entirely happy where he is. He's such a trooper though....keeps his complaining to a minimum. Otherwise, school has been going well with the exception of a few things. One of them is this incredibly unruly class that I have. It's really only a few kids, but they can get everyone off task so quickly. I'm not really a yeller and have used every trick in my arsenal and I still can't get to them. To make it worse, they're 4th quarter seniors...impossible to make them care. If any of you teacher folks out there have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them! Help!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Our marathon weekend...

So it's Sunday night and I think that I feel more tired than I did on Friday (not good). But we did have a fantastic weekend so I can't complain too much. Keith and I got back up to NH for practically the first time since we moved away this past summer. Friday we got to spend the night with the Krones family and catch up. It has been entirely too long! From there we headed up to Manch-vegas and visted with another old friend and then headed up to Conway for a night with some more friends. I had forgotten how beautiful northern NH is. We drove up 93 to 302 on the way up. If you're unfamiliar with the roads, the ride takes you through both notches, through the national forest, and right past Mt. Washington. It was a crystal clear day so you could see all the way up to the observatory on the top. Absolutly breathtaking! On the way home we too the Kancamagus Hwy, which also takes you through the national forest, but a different way. It's a scenic little road that follows the Saco River and takes you past all sorts of HUGE mountains and sheer cliffs. Add to it that it snowed a bit and it was picturesque. If you ever have a day where you're not sure what to do I totally recommend just taking a ride! And pack a picnic lunch if its nice out because there are lots of little scenic picnic spots along the way. Totally worth the gas money...

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A New Addition...

It's been a while since I last posted so I figured it was time for a catchup. Truthfully, up until a few days ago, not much has been going on. I've been going to work, coming home, and not much else so there hasn't been too much to say. I did get Wii Fit the other day. Awesome little contraption. I've been using it pretty frequently and I don't know if it's doing me any good, but it's a lot of fun. It's a snippy little thing though! I missed a few days of weighing in and it got a bit pissy to me when I finally did go back. The jerk!

The new addition part of this is my new cousin (well second cousin I guess). My cousin Kim welcomed her son into the world last week. His name is Kaeden Cashman and he is absolutly precious. Mom and baby are both doing well. I'll get some pictures up here soon, but I figured I'd give them a little while before I attack them with a camera.

We have another new addition, too, to my family....my mother decided to get a dog. She picked up her little Yorkshire Terrier today and though I think that she's a bit crazy to get a dog, I'm sure he's precious. Again, pics will be coming soon as I'm going to see him on Friday! Yeah for new babies (human and animal)!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

5 months to go...

Since I started this out to be a wedding blog so I'll give the wedding update. I opened my email this morning to an email reminding me that we are officially 5 months away...and I think we're doing pretty good. We have decided to print our own invitations and started printing those out the other night. Keith is pretty graphically inclined, so he even offered his opinion. The invites also involve thredding these shiny broach like things through some ribbon. Keith offered to help and it was probably the most priceless moment to see my future husband hunched over some silver ribbon with a shiny rhinestone thing in complete concentration mode. I complain sometimes that I feel like he hasn't really been involved in this whole wedding planning thing, but lately (as we've gotten down to the important details) he has kicked in big time. We registered at Bed Bath and Beyond the other day. Keith came and once again was completely into it. He's even going to the florist with me in a few weekends. I love it! It's so nice to know that he's here to help and that he's excited for the wedding too. I've read so many blogs and talked to so many people who had fiances that were totally hands off...and I think that if he did that I'd question whether he really wanted to be getting married. I have the most amazing man ever...

Oh...and Happy 200th B'day to Darwin!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

And here we are again...

Well, here I am again anyways. So for those of you who don't know, when I was teaching in New Hampshire we went through a very messy contract dispute. In fact, we came about 7 hours away from going on strike. Scary. Throughout that entire time, threat of pink slips and job loss was tossed around like crazy (especially for those of us who weren't tenured. if you're not in the teaching world that pretty much means that your sh** doesn't stink anymore and you have to do something horrendous to lose your job). Anyways, that went on for about two of my four years in Nashua and was finally settled mid last year. It wasn't fun, but I survived.

Fast forward to today and once again I am faced with being pink slipped and/or losing my job. It's a pretty scary thing and one that I am taking pretty seriously, but at the same time am trying not to lose sleep over it. Branford is a pretty well off district usually, but the economy's touch, so we're feeling it now. Because of the relative comfort that most Branford teachers are used to, this is causing a good chunk of them to seriously lose it! There are people freaking out everywhere! I'm not...

I think I've gotten to a point with this whole debaucle that I realize that there is nothing that I can do about it. I can only go into work each day, do the best job that I can do, and go home. The decisions that are being made are above my head and at this point I'm just along for the ride. I could freak out...realistically, I probably should be freaking out...but that's only going to hurt my students and drive poor Keith crazy. So I'm along for the ride again...hope everything works out. I really like Branford.

In other news SparkPeople is working! I have been to the gym consistenly for two weeks! Not a big deal for most, but huge for me. And when I say "been to the gym" I mean that I've had a good workout. I am a master of going to the gym, farting around on the treadmill for a bit, doing a few crunches and saying that I worked out. Not anymore! I haven't lost any real poundage yet, but I feel great. And because I'm not really overweight I don't expect to see the pounds go flying away. I'll be content if my arms and back look hot in my wedding dress :) Which should be in within the next few weeks! can't wait!

Monday, January 26, 2009


I got to thinking today about change (I have no idea why). I was realizing that 2009 is a big change year for me. To start with, in the past 5 months I have changed states, changed jobs, changed apartments (more than once!), made new friends, etc. In 2009 I will be changing my tax return status and my name as well as many other changes that go along with marriage. Now for me, all of these are planned changes. They are things that I knew were coming up in my life and have prepared for, even been excited for. Not all changes, however, are planned for. I think it's those changes that are trickier. This is all inspired by a friend/family member of mine who has become pregnant (who might be reading this...hi!). Obviously a major life change, maybe not so planned for, but change none the less. I think that how a person deals with unexpected change says a lot about their character. Some people pretend like it isn't happening, some get all sad and mopey and "woe is me", some pretend like its no big deal and inside are crumbling...and then there's those that embrace any changes that come at them and make the best out of that situation. I'd like to lump myself into that last category, but I think that I tend to fall into the 3rd category (the act like it's no biggie, but freak out on the inside). Totally unhealthy, I know. Actually, in writing this I'm thinking that I may be in for some unexpected changes throughout my 2009 as well and I'm going to make an honest effort to shift myself over to the 4th category. Because as much as change can be unwanted, unexpected, sometimes even needed or hoped for...it is inevitable. Guess we should all make sure that we handle change in a positive and healthy way. Wow...enough deep-ness.
Speaking of healthy, I was reading Carrie's blog about how she joined SparkPeople, so considering that I usually lack serious motivation I would join the website. It is a website that is kind of like WeightWatchers, but online and totally free. It has lots of great recipes and little groups to join and nutrition/exercise trackers. More importantly, it keeps that kind of thing on my mind. When I got engaged (over a year ago) I said that I was going to get back into shape. Plenty of time to get a wedding body that I want. Now that I'm less than 6 months out and have yet to loose a pound, I think it's time to get serious. So far so good. Now maybe i can get motivated to keep up with this blog thingy more often :)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Struck by Reality

This will be a short post because I have a million and a half things to do, but I just needed to post this. I have been planning this wedding for the past year. I have been checking things dutifully off of my list of things to do and booking places and paying deposits and all of that fun stuff for over 365 days. Then, all of a sudden, I realized today that I'm getting married. I know that that sounds kind of strange, but I've been planning things from a distance and not really thinking about details, but now that this is officially about 6 months away details are big on my mind. Not to mention that all of my girls have ordered their dresses and one of them came in already! My dress is due next month...can't wait! Reality has officially hit! Anyways, just thought it strange that it just hit me now that I'm really getting married and thought I'd share. Am I the only one who's done this???