Sunday, August 31, 2008

Pumpkin Cheesecake

We are going out with a bunch of friends tonight to the comedy club. The last time we went out with this many people, dinner took *forever* and I was at my stress limit after the two hours we spent at Olive Garden. So, we decided to just feed everyone over here in our tiny house. I will be making homemade pizza tonight, and I decided to try my hand at cheesecake.
Buying the appropriate spring form pans at Wal-Mart yesterday and thoroughly reading the directions in the cookbook as well as on the pan, I proceeded cautiously.








I've always heard that cheesecakes are difficult, so we'll see. Here's the before picture.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Eskimo Joe's

We drove to Stillwater today to eat at Eskimo Joe's. Wherever our duty station is, we like to explore the local attractions. Please excuse my blinding white legs....I know....spray tan is available. My son's expression always looks that excited!

It was yummy....the cheese fries are what they are famous for, and the t-shirts. I got a cup and my son got a deck of cards. All in all a fun adventure. The OSU campus is nice, too.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Alamo-North


My new friend over at Alamo-North gave me an award. While I think I'm going to refrain from passing it along, I wanted to mention her comment. Part of the award was to pass it on to someone from another part of the world. She gave it to me. See, I'm in Oklahoma, and she is in Texas. Those of you not from Texas won't understand, but I do. Thanks, Nola!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Butter, Part 2

This just about sums it up! I couldn't stop laughing when I saw it upon taking it out of the refrigerator to make cookies the other day.

And while we're on the subject of weird things we do....a new poll! Check out the side bar!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

He's a Man....

Last night we went to the store to buy some more new pants for my son. He wanted some Dickies. During tax free weekend when I bought him some he needed a size fourteen, up from the size ten he got last time. Well, he's outgrowing all his "holey" jeans that he skateboards in, too, so off we went. As we were looking, hubby noticed that the size 16 in boys was a 29 in men's, so they went over to look in the men's section. When he asked my son if he wanted to try the 28s on, you should have seen his face light up. Yep, they fit. From the men's section. Excuse me while I go cry.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fruit


My nephew started Kindergarten today. I don't have a picture of him with his teacher or anything yet, but in honor of him, I wanted to show you some pictures I took last time I was at their house. I did however hear that he already likes his teacher because when they went to meet her on Friday she was wearing a pink skirt. His favorite color. Yes, I know.....I actually have a picture of him in a pink dress somewhere.....


I'm sure we've all seen these decorative bowls of artificial fruit.





Just as I'm sure we've all seen the bite marks.



But it's still funny!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Preschool

My favorite bulletin board in the school is the preschool bulletin board. They make the cutest things. This year, they are the Kangaroos, so they drew a picture of their face to put in a pocket. This was my favorite one...I wish I had eyelashes like that! Isn't she cute!?

I feel compelled to explain a little bit more about my last post for those of you who may not be familiar with the goings on round these parts. The bottom picture in the previous post is an upside down Longhorn. The Longhorns are the mascot of the University of Texas. There are no pro sports teams in Oklahoma (yet) so the majority of people route for the University of Oklahoma, whether they went there or not. Some go so far, as in this case, of putting the Longhorn on their vehicle upside down. So, that's what that is. He's a Sooner.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Bulldog

I have a great honor this year. I was chosen to be the mentor for one of our new teachers. He is awesome and is doing a phenomenal job so far even given extra frustrations and stumbling blocks. The kids love him and I hope he likes it with us.


Our school mascot is the bulldog. Well, somehow he acquired a resin type bulldog statue and decided to let his kids paint it. Is that the most hideously cute thing you've ever seen or what!?












Unfortunately, he's one of "Those," sigh. ---------------------->

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Olympics


Lolo Jones, Sanya Richards, Dawn Harper, Elena Isinbaeva, Matthias Steiner, Nastia, Shawn, Michael. The Olympics bring tears to my eyes....happy, sad...so many heartstrings.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Butter

Quick update on the moth....I think it's laying eggs all over our wall. Freaked out or excited? I don't know yet.....

Today was my first day with kids. It was great to see them all again and meet the new ones.

I have this thing about butter. I carefully scrape my knife horizontally along the top layer to get some on the knife. No digging in. I try to get the amount I need and no more because I don't like to scrape any back on the side of the tub because then there will be crumbs, etc, and that's just gross. When I'm finished I place the knife across the top of the tub. Well, my hubby has a way of showing me just how much he loves me....he *stabs* the knife into the butter tub when he's done. ARRGGHH!!! Of course, if I never told him what bugged me, he wouldn't still do it. It's all in fun. In fact, my son said "I'm going to stab the butter, too so it drives my wife crazy!" Ahhh...the legacy.

OK, so I love these random vote! Check the side.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Calling all Entomologists!

This guy's been hanging around our front porch since last night. Isn't he/she (?) beautiful?

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Do Not Proceed


This is the sign that is at the end of the hallway my classroom is in. I glance at it everyday, but one day I stopped and thought....that's not possible. The office is at the other end of the building. So if you're going to register in the office, you have to proceed beyond this point...Hmmmm.....

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Safari of Success

Today was the first day of school. We all survived. My feet are killing me. I woke up early and jogged outside on the ground. Not the same as the good ol' treadmill. Ouch.

I worked like crazy to get my schedule started and updated my new class list, and on the inevitable new kids.

Our school has a school-wide theme every year, and this year we are on the "Safari to Success!" Each person or grade level picks an animal. I picked the hippo. My daughter and I have an ongoing joke about hippos. She's afraid of them.
How do you like my bulletin board!? Is he cute or what?








Then there's this gal. She's leftover from last time (we repeat the themes every few years). Talk about a cutie. Dontcha love her paw print bikini!?
Oh yeah, good times!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Go World!

I just love the Olympics, don't you!? I've had a love affair with the Olympics since I was a little girl, and if I had an ounce of athleticism in my body, I might have wanted to be an Olympian....but I don't, so there ya go.

My new hero: Dara Torres. She's older than me and still swimming like the kids! Wow, and since Googling her learning she's pretty hot, too! LOL

Enjoy! Go World!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Dr. Carbone

I am attending an extremely interesting and beneficial workshop this week. Dr. Vincent Carbone is the founder of the Carbone Clinic in New York. He is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. The workshop is specifically about shaping difficult behaviors to produce language (spoken words or sign) and promote learning.
About three weeks ago, I wrote on paper some things I would like to get off my chest. Sometimes I want to say these things to parents, but I can't because I am too emotionally involved in the situation and would not be able to remain objective and professional. I debated whether or not to put them here since the subject is quite controversial, but since I have had some time to stew over it, maybe I can write it here as a generality. I was prompted to think about putting it here again listening to Dr. Carbone. This rant was prompted by a well meaning mom who gave me a book called "Ten Things Your Autistic Student Wishes You Knew."

So, here is my response:

Ten Things Your Autistic Child's Teacher Wishes You Knew:
1. I love your child.
2. I have been teaching for 14 years. My Bachelor's degree is in Speech Language Pathology and my Master's degree is in Elementary Education with a specialization in Special Education. I have worked with at least 17 Autistic kids (that's about 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, 180 days a year in most cases) and have been to at least five in depth workshops dealing with Autism, including one that was 7 days long. The team of professionals that is working with your child (usually including a regular education teacher, special ed. teacher, Speech Therapist, and Occupational therapist) have many more total years experience than I do. We have a pretty good working knowledge of children with Autism.
3. I go above and beyond on a daily basis to find what works best for your child.
4. Advocacy groups make me angry. I wish we could all work together for the good of your child. Unfortunately it is about more than your child.
5. When you start throwing around the "L" word (lawyer), I shut down. I might have been extremely friendly with you and confided in you previously, but now I will be guarded and very careful about what I say to you, especially if we are one-on-one.
6. I know it is easier to give in to your child's tantrums/whining/etc. than it is to stick to your guns, but we do stick to our guns at school, and we would appreciate you following through rather than tearing down all our hard work. And please don't ask us to do things at school that we know good and well you don't do at home.
7. There is no 'cure' for Autism. Special glasses, chellation therapy, bariatric chambers, gluten/casein free diets, sensory integration therapy, etc. don't work. If they were proven effective for all children, we would all know it (and have more data proving it so) and someone would have a Nobel Prize. Some of those things work for some children, but take ALL advice and choose what is best for your family and your child. Please don't believe everything you read online.
8. We don't have to do all the crazy things your Doctor (who may be an expert on diagnosing but not working with), outside OT, PT, and Speech tells us to do. These are recommendations. These people are not part of the IEP team, and we as a team are making your child functional in the educational setting. We are not a rehabilitation setting. It would be nice if we could do everything, but we can't. Schools don't have unlimited funds, so in the end you as a taxpayer are paying for all your demands. If you don't like the Free Appropriate Public Education we can provide, there are some great private schools and services for you to explore.
9. I agree that we need to raise money and research and find the best practices and find long term solutions and preventions. But we all need to keep our focus and work together, not stir the pot, make trouble, and point fingers.
10. I still love your child.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Hubby's New Toy

Woo-Hoo!! Dear Hubby has been wanting one of these since we first laid eyes on them. We did a little shopping around and after spending all of a not-so-pleasant day dealing with car salesmen and leaving once, we now are the owners of this little beauty!
Look really closely....you can see the Hula Girl I got hubby for Christmas!! Isn't that great!