Indigo Robe

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Location: United States

Mum likes reading, decorating, shopping with the girls, and Starbucks. She also feels funny writing in the 3rd person. Papa (also known as Sparky) is currently looking at me with a blank stare having asked him to add something about himself to the blog. (Now he wants to say something) The only thing he loves more in life than music and Coke is his wife and kids. (Awww...) :) Little Lotte is a genius on the computer and makes me fall over laughing every day with her quick wit. She loves computers and animals. Sweet Pea abandoned her family and moved to Phoenix for work and is now married as of 2/28/06. She is beautiful and smart and the most nurturing person I know. She gave me the greatest gift ever when she made me a grandmother. I am the proud Mum Mum to Andrew Christopher. There are no words to describe the joy of having a grandson!

Friday, August 31, 2007

All I can say is...

thank god there are no Hershey Bars in the house or it wouldn't be pretty.

Rough day. Rough week.

My big sis sent me an email about how she was starting to resent her boss and decided to do something about it (get a new job) and I am wondering if this is the start of that joke... you know the one where you pray for an answer and God says, I sent you a boat, a plane and a something or other... I wonder if the email was my boat?


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Proud to say I am still a Philly Girl even after frying in the desert for the last 14 years!

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland

"You have a Midland accent" is just another way of saying "you don't have an accent." You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.

The Inland North
The South
The Northeast
The West
North Central
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

1) What section of the bookstore do you visit first?
Decorating magazines

2) What are your three favorite movies of all time?
French Kiss, The Sound of Music, Private Benjamin

3) What are your five favorite songs of all time?
Impossible... I can only list my favorite songs THIS WEEK:
Stay For Awhile (The Live Version from Time Again -Amy Grant), Wish (Stevie Wonder), Biggest Part of Me (Ambrosia), End of the Innocence (Don Henley with Bruce Hornsby on piano) and it’s a toss up between Peaceful, Easy Feeling (Eagles) or London Bridge (Fergie) :-)

4) What subjects come to mind when you daydream?
Traveling, decorating

5) If you could have any job in the world, what would it be? Why?
Snow White at Disney in the Electric Light Parade. If I have to work in my dream world then at least I get to wear a princess dress with lights.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

How smart are you? - Are you dumb?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Too much toile, even for me!

and not the place I want to see the Eiffel Tower...

Sunday, August 26, 2007

I don't know if it's the fever but...

I am digging Amy Winehouse.

And it figures... just when I discover her music she goes and screws up her life. At least I can listen to her before she kills herself or her husband kills her.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

I probably shouldn't stand on my soap box when I have a fever but...

When I began my masters degree, I focused on what I thought was obvious - we needed national standards. I wrote several papers about it and every time I did, a professor would always say - wow, great idea. I thought it was an OBVIOUS idea!

I could feel the rumblings in education - the beginnings of NCLB were planted and I knew that we, as educators with no voice about how to educate children, were in for a rough ride. I felt that having national standards would alleviate the pressure we would feel to "leave no child left behind". How can I do that when a child moves here from another state where their state standards were not as rigorous as ours are? (Or the opposite, a child comes here from a state with higher standards and is way ahead of the class and needs some challenging work. Gifted students are seriously left to stagnate because we are more concerned with getting the scores of the low kids up so our school isn't failing but that's another post and this is a run-on sentence!) It just made sense that we should have a national standard since the President wanted cookie cutter kids. If we want cookie cutter kids we need a cookie cutter curriculum and thus, cookie cutter standards.

I hate, hate, hate when the federal government, when ASKED to be involved, says, "OH NO! WE COULDN'T POSSIBLY INTERVENE! THAT'S TOTALLY FOR SURE UP TO THE STATES TO MAKE THE STANDARDS - WE DON'T WANT TO BE TOO INVOLVED IN STATE'S CHOICE!" That arguments doesn't make sense AT ALL when the whole reason we are where we are educationally is BECAUSE of the federal government stepping over their boundaries and getting their nose all up in education. Either it's a state right or it's not. Make up your mind.

NCLB is NOT going away. So just slap a national standard on it and be done with it.

Published Online: August 14, 2007
Published in Print: August 15, 2007
Legislators Oppose National Standards
By Michele McNeil

The National Conference of State Legislatures has taken a hard line against any form of national academic standards, declaring last week that any national attempt to unite school curricula across states would be unacceptable until perceived flaws in the federal No Child Left Behind Act are fixed.
The strongly worded new policy against national standards—even voluntary ones—prompted virtually no debate and was approved on a voice vote during the Denver-based group’s business meeting at its annual conference here, which drew nearly 9,000 attendees from Aug. 5-9. NCSL policies such as the new one on national standards set the Washington lobbying agenda of the legislative group.

The policy reads, in part: “We need rigorous state standards that are anchored in real world demands. … This can be most readily accomplished through individual state refinement of standards … not through federal action—which flies in the face not only of the role of states since the inception of our system of providing education, but the historical role of states and local school districts in funding education with diminished federal support.”

Much of the group’s opposition to national standards is rooted in its dislike for the NCLB law, which is up for reauthorization before Congress. The NCSL, which has been among the most unified, vocal critics of the federal school accountability law, issued a report in February 2005 calling for more flexibility for states.

“The idea of going to national standards when we’re dealing with a system that has imposed itself on all 50 states—with the emphasis on process—would at best be premature,” New York state Sen. Stephen Saland, a Republican, said at last week’s ncsl meeting. Sen. Saland was a co-chairman of the group’s task force on the federal education law. “This would not be the time.”

The new policy states that NCLB “arbitrarily overidentifies failure … driving states to broaden the definition of proficiency and/or relax standards.”

NCSL education policy official David Shreve, who drafted the national standards proposal on behalf of the committee, dubbed it the “No way, José, policy.” The policy does encourage states, if they wish, to participate in other efforts to make academic standards more uniform and rigorous, such as the Washington-based Achieve Inc.’s American Diploma Project, which is trying to improve U.S. high schools.

But not all states participating in the committee meeting agreed with the policy’s severe stance. Among those that balked were Arkansas, Georgia, Oklahoma, and Texas. The committee includes multiple members from each state, and even some state delegations were split.

The legislators’ reasons for supporting or rejecting the policy involved more than just national standards, and often reflected the broader debate over the federal education law.

“I think this is very negative,” Nevada Sen. Barbara K. Cegavske, a Republican, said of the proposed policy. “Not everyone is against No Child Left Behind.”

Friday, August 24, 2007

me sick :(

damn rugrats...

Thursday, August 23, 2007

I found this beautiful summer poem and thought it might help make your day. It did mine, and it's very well written.

" Summer "

A poem by Abigail Elizabeth McIntyre

It's Hot !

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Conversation with an the copy tech today...

Me: Light a candle for me, we have to teach kinders all morning.

Copy tech: Awww, but they are so cute!

Me: Spoken like someone who has never been trapped in a room of 30 kinders. I'm scared!

Copy Tech: Scared? What do you mean? They can't hurt you!

Me: It's just like bugs! They are small and you know they can't hurt you but you are still scared of them.

Art teacher chimes in: Actually, they look like little drunks.

And so began our half day. On half days, we have this caaaraaazzzy idea of combining both am and pm kinders and shuffling them off to the specialists. Patty (the art teacher) and I join forces and teacher an art/writing lesson together because really, who wants to teach kinders for 25 minutes by themselves unless you are a kinder teacher and I already did my dues and taught kinders for one whole year, thank you very much.

The best part is when Patty mouths the words to me "little drunks!" from across the room and I laugh so hard it's hard to hold my crayons. We had a little boy who was just so overwhelmed with having to hold crayons and write his name that he just lay down on the floor, in true drunk fashion. It was hilarious.

I spent the afternoon meeting with my team and planning our family night and then I got to score some more writing. Are you ready for some more? I knew that you were!

NOT a Paris Hilton wannabe :

"If I were in charge of the world I would get rid of pink, fluffy dresses."


And then the kid that you want to tell the parents to stop procreating:

If I were in charge of the world I would...

(spelling kept for the integrity of the piece!)

"start a world war 4. I would get all ths viedo games I want I would get a car and dvier like carzy. I would destory all the scholl’s."

Big sigh...


And this little girl in 5th grade is a little behind on the news front...

"If I were in charge of the world... I would not change a thing. The world is perfect how it is. The only thing I would do is free the slaves."

Would the internet laugh at me if they knew I came home from work and looked at this picture that Little L made (to make fun of me on her blog!!!) and used said picture to actually help me turn on the tv?

Well, laugh, laugh your heart out... but for the first time EVER I actually turned on the tv today and am sitting here watching TV!!!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Out of the Mouths of Babes...

Every year I have the unique opportunity to read what is on the minds of our students via a writing "test" that is given at the beginning of the year and again at the end of the year. I hate this test because it is exactly the opposite of how I (or any good writing teacher) would teach students to write. This test only measures their conventions and doesn't care about a student's voice or word choice, etc. So I grit my teeth and give them the test and tell them to try and use only words they can spell (because they get a point for every word that is spelled correctly) and then I tell them to NEVER WRITE LIKE THAT AGAIN! The beautiful thing is the students are listening - I have first and second graders finally using words that are in their vocabulary but they haven't quite learned to spell. I always explain that I can help them spell the word, but the word they choose is up to them - I cannot choose the word for them. I make a really big deal out of how great their word choice is and then we work on spelling it correctly when it's time for editing.

Anyway - I am glad to see that some of my students were able to get a glimmer of voice into these very dry, boring writing prompts. (I did not write the prompts - residual from the Little Dr. we had that blew in from some southern state such as Alabama or Louisiana or something...

Here are a few highlights from today. I still have 500 papers to score so I am sure I will find some more gems this week.

And now for your reading pleasure...


The writing prompt was :

More than anything I wish I could...

"write a world selling book that would stop wars, stop burglary, and stop the fighting. I would write a series of kids books and history books and textbooks and all sorts. I’d be known as Mr. B, the Book Bug. I’d be on talk shows and be rich and play golf and have the fancy mustard with the other rich big shots."

And another ... (this one is a future evangelist)

More than anything I wish I could...

"touch God’s face in heaven. Hopefully I wish I can go to heven. I’m pretty sure I can because I believe that Jesus died for all of us to take away our sins. I can’t wait to go to heaven."

This little girl is not putting all of her eggs in one basket...


Be a hair dresser but if I get fired I will be a veterenarian. If I get fired from that I will be a dentist.


Lots of 3rd grade girls wanted to "go to Paris, France" or "see the Eiffel Tower" - this is great for many reasons but for one, I love that they are using their IDEAS strategies that I taught them - to look around you when you need ideas. The girls just LOVE my Eiffel Tower lamp on my desk and I refer to my desk as France (they are not allowed to go to my desk unless they have a passport!) so how adorable is that - they want to see the Eiffel Tower too!

Monday, August 20, 2007

How come this isn't the front of my house?

Friday, August 17, 2007

Once again, you MUST look at the latest entry from Little L

She is soooo funny!!!!

Read the one dated: August 17th in response to my remote picture:

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Reason #495867 Why I hate living in the desert...

Actual signage welcoming me to Sabino Canyon...

Mary Cassatt - A Philly Sista :-)

Perfect as we plan to go to the National Gallery in Oct. so I can finally see my favorite painting by Mary Cassatt "Children Playing on the Beach"

You Are Impressionism

You think the world is quite beautiful, especially if you look at it in new and interesting ways.
You tend to focus on color and movement in art.
For you, seeing the big picture is much more important than recording every little detail.
You can find inspiration anywhere... especially from nature.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

I Did Not Know That...

How come nobody bothered to tell me that Lindsey Buckingham sings HOLIDAY ROADS, the theme song from the vacation movies?

Monday, August 13, 2007

Little L Becomes A Part of the Work World or...

How I taught my daughter to be bitter!

You MUST read her entry!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Heatstroke and 5 things...

I should write about Sparky almost having heat stroke or a heart attack this morning. We were outside getting rid of the weeds which happen every monsoon season. I was sitting on a blanket, under a tree, casually cutting the weeds. Crazy husband was standing, in the sun, using the weed thingy like a mad man. I mentioned that maybe he should slow down and get some water. He dropped the weed thingy and went inside. Usually reappears. This time he did not. I got a sick feeling in my tummy and ran into the house to find him lying in bed, sweat pouring off of his body, white as a ghost, heart beating and shaking. He is the kind of person who will NOT tell me he is sick. Turns out he was on the floor before he finally made it to the bed. He remained in bed the rest of the day. Unlike him.

So I take Little L and her friends to the movies alone (and stopped at my fav. stores, I am soo bad) and then I asked her friends who does their weeds? And they all answer their brothers... and Little L says to notice the pattern - it's not a 50 year old man!

When we got home, there was a flyer on the door for a weed service. Guess who I am calling tomorrow? I kinda would rather pay someone to do the weeds so I can continue to have Sparky around.

And now... here are 5 things...

"What were you doing 10 years ago?"

I was teaching Kindergarten at the same district I still work for.

"What were you doing 1 year ago?"

I was enjoying my summer, going to San Diego, Vegas and Georgia (the summer of travel!)

"Five snacks you enjoy:"

1. Hershey’s chocolate bar with almonds. I mean - Apples! yes, healthy delicious green apples!

2. My homemade “cowboy caviar” (really awesome salsa with white pinto beans, fresh cilantro, white sweet corn, onions, garlic, lime, salt, vinegar and fresh chopped tomatoes) and baked tortilla chips. (Scoops are the best!)

3. Rasinettes

4. goldfish crackers (fresh ones, I had some stale ones the other day, not so good)

5. cashews

"Five things you would do if you were a millionaire:"

1. Retire!

2. Invest! (So we can share with the kids!)

3. Build our dream cottage.

4. Pay someone to clean my little dream cottage and weed the garden.

5. Travel

"Five bad habits:"

1. Skipping breakfast - lately I’ve been trying to at least eat a banana.

2. Not backing down to aggressive drivers.

3. Spending too much at Home Goods, Ross, and such...

4. Drinking too much diet soda.

5. Using excuses for not exercising.

"Five things you like doing:"

1. Spending time with my family. We laugh ALL the time when we are together.

2. Writing

3. Taking pictures

4. Walking with Sparky at the beach.

5. Getting a european facial at Gadabout.

"Five things you would never wear again:"

1. Short, Mrs. Brady hair.

2. Laura Petrie pants.

3. fake, cheap earrings. (I just had this discussion last night. When I hit 40 I decided that I had spent enough money over the years on fake earrings that I could have just bought a beautiful pair of diamond earrings. So I went out and bought a small white gold hoop (very small)with baguette cut diamonds. The next year I went and bought a 1/4 t.w. in yellow gold pair of studs. They were immediately too small. (I SHOULD HAVE LISTENED TO MY BIG SIS CONNIE WHO WARNED ME OF THIS PHENOMENON!) So I took them back and got the 1/4 c.t.w. for each ear. (They are still too small) But I only wear these two pairs of earrings and I have not spent another penny of fake earrings since then! In the long run, I have saved money. There is something about feeling I’ve earned the right to wear a nice pair of earrings since I am a woman in my 40’s.

4. Those dresses with the puffy sleeves, I think I had a Gunny Sak (spelling?) that was pink and white and oh so adorable when I was 20.

5. Shoulder pads!!!

"Five favorite toys:"

1. Camera

2. Computer

3. Fancy pens, especially ones with magnificent colors and if it’s a sparkly color, I am in HEAVEN. (Love my sparkly gel pens!)

4. Journals. I have a million. Although I don’t actually write in them all the time, I usually write quotes, doodles, lists, etc.

5. our new flat screen tv.


Thursday, August 09, 2007

Happy Birthday, Sweet Pea! I love you! xoxoxo

Tuesday's Child is Full of Grace... ABC's for my Princess

A – articulate
B – beautiful
C – calla lilies in her bouquet
D – deserves every blessing every given to her
E – empathetic
F – finds the good in others
G – gets car sick
H – hazel eyes like her mum
I – intelligent
J – just gives the greatest advice
K – kind hearted like her daddy
L – loves the Pagoda in Reading
M – must have chocolate as a daily vitamin
N – nurturing
O – organized
P – Pooh bear blanket tragedy (hehe)
Q – quickly reads people
R – rises to any challenge
S – sets goals and meets them
T – takes pleasure in the beauty life has given her
U – University of Az. graduate
V – very loving big sister
W – Will be a GREAT mother
X – X-ray tech is her Prince Charming
Y – yearns for Paris
Z – zany sense of humor

Monday, August 06, 2007

28th Anniversary

Sparky and I celebrated our 28th anniversary this past Saturday. It rained for a little bit was just mostly cloudy - still the way I love it. We had a wonderful day with Little L shopping for our own gifts. When you've been married this long, it's nice to be able to buy your own gift because you will get exactly what you want!

Sparky had his eye on a gorgeous shirt at Banana Republic and I found this fantastic bag that my laptop computer will fit in. It's an Aigner so hello!!! the happiness!!!

Then we dropped Little L at home (she was tired and didn't want to join us for dinner) and we went out for a bite to eat. It was so nice to sit across the table from the man I said "I do" to 28 years ago and still marvel at his beautiful face, heart, and spirit. We talked about how when you are young (I was 18, he was 22) you just have NO CLUE that you are saying forever to the person you are marrying. And then we both agreed that today - forever doesn't even seem long enough for us.

On a side note - these dinner pictures are not from our anniversary but rather from my birthday last week. You see I was craving this shrimp and so I saved one for the last bite to savor. I leaned over to Sparky and whispered that I was saving it for that pleasure and how crazy am I? He then moved a piece of broccoli to reveal his OWN hidden treasure - a nice juicy scallop. He said he had done the same thing!

And that's why we are married for 28 years.

I love you, Sparky!

Friday, August 03, 2007

Still More Birthday Love...

Thursday, August 02, 2007

The cards...

More Birthday Love...

The beautiful decorations...