Saturday, August 23, 2008

Suck up your pride and just do it

I am going to be getting my blue belt in karate next Wednesday night. I am pretty excited. We have to do a new goal setting plan as part of the promotional process. The kids have to get their teachers and parents to sign their promotion packet but I just have to answer the questions and set the 5 goals. Man, it was hard to write out those goals . . . not because I couldn't think of any, but because most of the things I am working on or need to work on are personal and I knew that my instructor would be reading them. I felt really vulnerable writing them down on paper where he would be able to read them. Things about anger and anxiety, focus and concentration, adhd, spirituality. . . it took me about 2 hours to finally get them down on paper in the words that I wanted. When I gave him the paper, he opened it up, and I had to ask him to read it later when I wasn't around. I felt so lame. But anyways, the goals are good and I hope it all works out well.

I know a weenie man

So, Mom had her backyard landscaped and it is just beautiful! They put in a small waterfall and pond and I talked her into getting a firepit put in also. It is so neat. We have used it twice already. Last Saturday we cooked hamburgers and tonight we roasted weiners. Man I love it! All hail black boogers and campfire smelling hair and clothes!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Greek Olive Crowns

Yesterday and today I had the kids draw themselves on a Wheaties box as we have been discussing the Olympics. I took a photo of each child with an olive crown on like the ancient Greeks. Today one of the kids said as I was placing the crown on his head, "But I don't want to look like Adam and Eve." I laughed and said, "Of course not, you look like a Greek Olympian!" They turned out so cute.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Olympics glory and upsets

I love the Olympics! Tonight I was watching some swimming events and they were amazing. I felt so bad for Katie Hoff. She was set to win the gold, a full body length ahead of the next swimmer with less than one lap to go and somehow, the British girl caught up and touched the wall just before her and in less than an instant (.07 of a second) she went from gold to silver. Don't get me wrong, that is still amazing, but I could tell by the look on her face that she was devastated.
The next race was the men's relay and Michael Phelps was the first leg of the race. The French team had been quoted bragging, "We will smash the Americans. That's what we came here to do." So they were ahead for most of the race, but on the last leg, our guy (crap I can't remember his name) pulled ahead with amazing power and beat the French by .08 of a second. Everyone was in a tizzy. Michael Phelps couldn't believe what he had seen and he was screaming from the bottom of his belly. You could see the muscles straining from his belly button all the way to his neck and the veins in his neck and forehead looked like they would burst! I was so excited. We saw the medal ceremony and he was smiling the whole time they played the national anthem. 2 more gold medals and he will be the greatest Olympic athlete of all time! You can do it Michael!
Hey, let's not forget the Redeem Team smashing China last night in basketball. That was pretty awesome too. Unfortunately, I did not see that-only some highlights of the game.
What's up with no baseball or softball anymore?
Who decided that Mr. IOC Chairman?
Go USA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

So NOT ready

So school starts on Tuesday and my classroom looks like it has been hit by a tornado. I don't know how I am going to get it all put together this weekend, but it is going to have to get done. I have a really neat bulletin board that I have put up though. That is the reason why the room is such a mess. I had to dig through all of my things in order to find the stuff I made for the Olympics and haven't used in four years. I got a brilliant idea last night as I was driving home from the school, which is to make a "Wheaties box" for the kids to draw a picture of themself on and then hang them up. I think the Wheaties Champions will be so cool. I am excited because several of the kids that I taught two years ago when they were first graders are in my class this year and they are all great kids. I am looking forward to having the opportunity to be their teacher again. I hope they are excited too.
I am so exhausted tonight. Between having to stay at the school real late the past few nights and karate and then . . . Shasta Cat has started sleeping on my bed. I don't mind that, but I am just not used to it and I wake up constantly because every time I roll over I feel her at my feet and I think, "be careful, Shastie is down there." So I wake up constantly and plus, last night, I just could not get comfortable no matter how hard I tried.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Pain is temporary, pride is forever!?!?

Well, that's what they say to pump you up during those rough moments on the court or field, right? So anyways, I injured my ankle in karate last and it has been swollen up, literally as large as a grapefruit since then! I have a cankle. . . So I went to the instacare just to make sure that it wasn't broken since I have a history of foot surgeries. Yep, it's just sprained, but man does it hurt. I guess I can look back on this in a couple of years and it will all just be a small memory compared to the pride that I can feel as I don that coveted black belt.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Awesome birthday!

Last night my family threw a surprise birthday party for my 30th birthday. They hung up "over the hill" banners and had napkins and decorations too. It was pretty cool. Yes, I was surprised. I kind of wondered because Kelly was making baked beans at like 7:00 in the morning and I thought, "There must be something going on." But I was supposed to be going out to dinner with Grandma Irene and Garn, so I just figured she was trying out a new recipe or something.
It was funny because everyone parked all over the neighborhood to hide their cars so I wouldn't know. They were parked in other people's driveways even (friends of course) and I had no clue.
Kelly made us all play Bingo since it was about me being old. I won three rounds and they were all telling me that I couldn't get more than one prize.
Mike was in such a good mood, which is rare. He is always moody and complaining that he's tired and so he can't put a smile on his face. Well, last night he was so happy and smiling the whole time. He was laughing all night long about an accident Grandma had with a bottle of honey. He wanted some honey for his corn bread, so Grandma got out her plastic bottle of honey (you know the ones shaped like a little bear) and it was hard so she put it in the microwave, but she didn't open it at all so that air could escape and when she opened it, honey exploded everywhere, even on the ceiling (which I ended up scrubbing off for her before we left). Well Michael thought that was pretty funny and had to laugh and talk about it all night long. But it was a good change from his normal attitude.
I got some nice things. My mom got me a new watch which I had selected with her beforehand so that she got the "right one." I am very picky with certain things and watches are one of them. I can never find one that I like without trying on hundreds of them. Michael and Natalie went to the Bear Mill and made me a white bunny with basketball clothes and shoes. I thought that was so sweet and thoughtful. He said, "We know you are sad and miss your bunny so we thought we would get you one to remind you of him." How sweet is that??? Grandma and Garn gave me some movie tickets and a Barnes and Noble gift card. Aunt Becky gave me an Old Navy gift card and Kelly got me the Colbie Caillat CD.
I was so happy that we all spent the whole night together and had such a wonderful time. Everyone was happy and excited to be together. That is so rare and it was a blessing.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Everything changes in an instant

Everything seems completely different and strange the moment that you realize that you have lost a loved one. As you're going about your normal routine you get that phone call and the person on the other end cannot hide the truth no matter how hard they try.
As I was leaving my karate class tonight, I checked my voice mail and my sister said, "I just needed to tell you something important and I didn't know where you were and when you plan on being back." So I called her. That's when I knew it, something was wrong. "Well, I just need to tell you something about someone in Moorpark."
"Well, what is it?"
"Well, I'll just tell you when you get home."
"Tell me now..."
"I just don't know if you can handle it while you're driving."
"Just tell me . . . "
"Well, Ginger . . . . passed away."
That's when it struck me. Driving home from karate class on a Friday night I found out that someone I have known and been friends with my whole life is no longer here. She left suddenly and no one seems to really know why. She just didn't wake up and her husband, 4 young children, and family and friends are all shocked.
All the memories and conversations, arguments, parties, and laughter flood through your head so fast that you can't comprehend it all. Questions that I wish could be answered pop up furiously like on a computer screen. It is as if it is all a dream, but I know it has to be real, because no dream would be this clear.
Ginger, the girl who always asked me when I was going to have my birthday party (ironically, tomorrow is my birthday) because she wanted to make sure that nothing conflicted. "You're parties are always the best! I never want to miss them."
The one who I will always think of every time I hear the song, "Eternal Flame" and see her lipsinging in the ward talent show at 11 years old.
The one who I sat with almost every day at lunch Freshman year (the only year she actually went to Moorpark High).
The girl who always shared a tent with me at Girl's Camp and made sure that my shorts were to my knees or my fingertips, whichever was longer.
We snuck up to "convenient" every time she came over to fill up on chocolate and treats, things she was forbidden to have at home.
She laughed at me as she hit me in the face with a snowball and I jumped on her and pushed her three feet deep into the soft snow on a ski trip to Mammoth Mountain.
She has four beautiful children who look just like her and will always remind her family and friends of her every time they see them.
I have known Ginger as long as I can remember. I can't tell you when we first met. She was just always there from the moment we moved to California in 1985. I can't tell you when we became friends. When someone who you have known for that long is gone the whole world seems to flip upside down in an instant and you feel like you are left clinging to whatever you can grab just so that you don't fly right off the edge of the planet.
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