Tuesday, March 29, 2011

In the land of tall clover

Just a bit of light
in between the clouds
shining down on the clover.

All the rain this week is going to make for a muddy field day on Friday.

Speaking of which, is it Friday yet?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

13/52 Lush

The rain is making everything look so lush and beautiful! I just love, love, love spring!

Saturday, March 26, 2011


After some wheeling and dealing, I have a new car! I'm so excited! I got a Subaru Outback and we got it for a great deal (thanks to my husband's persistence). Right after driving off the car lot, we went to buy some plants and then went home to hurry to plant them in the garden before the rain came.

Now we are listening to the rumblings of the storm. Bliss!

Now, I have to come up with a name for the car. Any suggestions?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

What I wanted to capture was the wind

Stressful weeks always last so long. But a little time in the sunshine - especially with the wind blowing makes everything right with the world.

Off to a little dinner with my mother and her church lady friends ("well, isn't that special...").

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

It is the only time of the year when I love the azaleas

They are just so beautiful when they are blooming! And then they are just a boring bush for the other eleven and a half months of the year.

Before I married my husband, I lived in a house with azaleas lining the entire property. Every summer, I had to trim back all the bushes (there were a LOT). Every summer, I got bitten by at least one spider.

At my current house, I had my husband dig up several azaleas. We only kept a couple because they are of the dwarf variety.

For the most part, I am so over azaleas.

Monday, March 21, 2011


On Saturday, I looked for shells and shark's teeth. Instead, I found a funky jelly fish!

I wish I were back at the beach.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

12/52 Decisions

A weekend at the beach... 300+ pictures taken... Between the evening walk on the beach and breakfast at The Fourth of May (great restaurant) and dolphins at the pier and Dona playing golf and dinner at Blackwater Grill (one of my top 5 all-time favorite restaurants) and long walks at the beach looking for shells (and finding so much more) and the deer on the golf course (they were so close to us!) and the super moon (who incidentally forgot his cape) - I had a hard time picking just one picture to represent the week. In the end, I deleted 200 pictures (really, who needs 68 pictures of dolphins swimming in the ocean?) and chose this one of the beach at low tide. The sand looked like a field of diamonds and I loved the silhouette of the person and the dog.

I love going on vacation and I love to come home! Now I'm off to slather on the aloe again.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Light - Nature's Happy Pill

Conversation of the day...

School Nurse: "I want you to look at this! We ALL have on green."

Me: "Well, it IS St. Patrick's Day."

And, yes, her hair does grow naturally like that... blonde at the roots.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Light - Nature

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"Before the tongue can speak, it must have lost the power to wound." ~ Peace Pilgrim

The good news is that the kids are still funny and adorable when they have a fit. The bad news is that the dad who threw down and caused quite the scene wasn't adorable. At. All. Oddly enough, they looked pretty much the same.

Monday, March 14, 2011

You build me up

After not being able to get to sleep (darn time change) and then having the alarm go off at 3:30 a.m. (instead of 4:30 a.m.), I came home to sunshine and time to work in the garden.

Who needs sleep when one can have sunshine?

Sunday, March 13, 2011

11/52 Ahhhhh

The warmer weather and the lovely sunlight lasting later in the day makes losing an hour of sleep worthwhile. I wish days like today could just last forever - yet I know that a year from now, I won't even remember the warmth that today's relatively uneventful day brought.

Happy Spring!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Free Labor

Sometimes I work to help my husband on certain catering jobs - thus the free labor title as that is what I am. I particularly love weddings!

Today's wedding was small, intimate and so very happy. The weather was sunny and warm and that seemed to have everyone in a great mood. I love working at weddings where the family and the guests are so nice!

As the sun set, the coolness of the night began to roll in. After my work was done, I felt happy and content so I drove home with the top down. And the heat on high.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


This week has been a tough one. I'm craving for things to fall more into the happy-go-lucky range.

The good things that happened today: my first real conversation with a hurt child and not his shell, a hug from a student who often retreats, a thank you email from a parent, and the conversation I had with a kindergartener.

Kindergarten student as he waits for the morning bell to ring: "Whoa! Is today Thursday?"

Me: "Why yes it is Thursday!"

Kindergarten student as he hits himself in the head with an open hand: "Oh, man! I forgot to brush my teeth this morning!"

Sometimes it is best not to ask for clarification. Here's to hoping he was just voicing two random thoughts in the same conversation.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Oh, how I despise having to sit all day in meetings. There is some serious fanny fatigue going on. But not as serious as the brain burn going on from all the number crunching.

Exactly how much money can you take away from education... how many more students can you cram in a classroom... how many teachers can a school do without.... how many furlough days can be had.... how many students in that subgroup are not on target to meet benchmark standards...???

Math is hard!

And then the math gods smiled down on me and showed me a problem I could handle. How many blooms are on the tree? Why only ONE! One bloom is left on the tree.

Thank you very much, math gods.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Mili and Mondays

Mili's favorite days are Saturday and Sunday. She told me this during our little discussion in the backyard.

This is what she thinks of Monday.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

10/52 The other sign says Watch For Children

After lunch, I went for a walk with my camera (her name is Camille). There are so many things blooming and it just makes me want to take a picture of everything out there which then causes me to have serious ADHD moments. In the end I took a picture of the Curve Ahead sign. This street is around the corner from my house and is a great street to do hill repeats on when running for several reasons: it has a hill (I live in a predominantly flat area), it is beautiful, it has a baseball park, and there is a fabulous pink house that I love.

By the way, there are two houses for sale on this street. Any cool people want to move to a hill in a flat area that has early spring and sultry summers?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Celebration for Tay and Max

Tay used to attend my elementary school when he was younger and I just fell in love with him and his sweet spirit. Tay has always been a very sick but brave little boy! He has a blood disease that destroyed his kidneys. There have been several scares when we thought we'd lose Tay. After living for a couple of years without kidneys and having to be on dialysis each and every night, a kidney became available for Tay earlier this year!

We all cried happy tears as we waited for Tay to come out of surgery. In recovery, Tay named his kidney Max (who has adapted very well to him, thank you very much).

This weekend, Tay turned 14 years old and a BIG birthday celebration was held for him. If you don't believe in miracles, you should come meet Tay. He is a young man with a big heart and an even bigger smile that will make a lasting impression on you.

About this picture: This was an emotional moment after Tay's grandmother had tried to share what Tay means to her. She cried. Tay cried. Tay's grandfather joined in and he cried. There wasn't a dry eye in the house (I actually don't know this for sure as I couldn't see past the puddle flowing from my own eyes).

Sometimes, you meet someone who reminds you of all that is important. Tay is one of those people.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The groundhog was right about an early spring this year!

The grass is beginning to green up again. All over town, trees are bursting forth with colorful blooms. Buds on the bushes are forming and getting ready to start opening up.

It's like nature is celebrating!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Garden shadows

The conversation of the day:
Student (loudly whining): "But I don't want to have to eat lunch with the Kindergarteners. They are just booger pickers."
There was no response from me but to turn my head to keep from laughing as I'd just motioned for this student to get his finger out of his nose.

My husband came home with the coolest car! A 1996 Volkswagen Golf Convertible that was made and sold in Mexico. I am so going to steal that car from him.

Perhaps I could borrow a booger picker to gross him out and distract him while I take the keys.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid of standing still ~ Chinese Proverb

Sometimes I get so frustrated with how slowly situations get resolved. I want so badly to just be able to check things off my to do list.

And then I go sit in on the auditions* for the talent show just in time to see a student doing the Urkel dance.

*Auditions refer loosely to just being sure the students don't have inappropriate lyrics, etc (you'd be surprised at just how worldly young children can be).

Monday, February 28, 2011

9/52 ~ After the run

I love the way it feels when a long run has been accomplished. Running a half marathon in a tutu with 16.000 other runners was more challenging in some ways and less challenging in others.

Challenges: The tutu! It got so hot and just in the way.

On the flip side: There is nothing more motivating than to be surrounded by so many strong, awesome women.

I hope I can make this run a yearly event. One day, I will not be able to run it. Today is not that day (thanks to Laura for sharing that quote).

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Spring just makes my heart happy

This is probably the last shot of the Japanese Magnolia blooms this spring as the petals are beginning to fall off. Since I'm leaving for Orlando tomorrow afternoon for several days, they'll likely all be gone when I return.

But fear not for there are buds and blooms beginning to peak out on the branches of other trees!

Today's conversation of the day:
As 1st grade child was walking to his mother's car at the end of the day, he suddenly turned around and ran up to his teacher who was on duty.
Teacher (leaning down to the child): "Is everything okay? Did you forget something?"
Child (grabbing her face in his hands): "Oh Mrs. Teacher! I'm going to miss you so much when I go to college!"

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"I stuck my head out the window and spring kissed me bang in the face." ~ Langston Hughes

I could live in this tree. Seriously live there.

Got off work early today (those of you who work in education know what a rarity that can be) after presenting in a technology expo. It was a fun morning and a great afternoon. And if you want to start a photography and/or a technology club in an elementary school, I can tell you all the things we've learned. The bottom line is that it is hard work but oh so worth it!

Wishing you all some happy spring weather!

Monday, February 21, 2011


I think I could take a million pictures of the flowers on the Japanese Maple in our front yard. Seriously, I've been just sitting out there and staring. I think the neighbors think I'm weird.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

8/52 "Dream as if you'll live forever, live as if you'll die today." ~ James Dean

Spent the weekend with my husband in Jacksonville, FL. We had a great time visiting with friends and family. And we just enjoyed being together.

Maybe we should get out of town more often.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Awesomeness is..

Awesomeness is....
A new leaf leafing out
A meeting with an upset parent that ends positively
A visit from my 4th grade teacher (oh my gosh! She looks just the same as she did 35 years ago!)
A date with my husband and some great friends tonight at my favorite Indian restaurant
A weekend trip with the husband to go to a party that includes dancing
A warm weather front that is making this the warmest February ever (love it!)
A Friday where ALL the students were picked up and on time

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

And there it is....

A sign of spring!

There is one blossom amongst all the buds on the Japanese Magnolia. I'm just giddy with excitement!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

On the edge

Days like today... well, they make me appreciate my own children. And all the parents who don't yell. And by yelling, I mean yelling at me.

At least I got to have a serious conversation with a boy about how we shouldn't discuss anatomy at lunch using a banana as a prop. These conversations always make the boys squirm. But nothing like how they squirm when they have to call their parents.

I know, I know... I'm mean! :)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happiness is a box full of red velvet cupcakes

There are some awesome parents who have kids at my school who know how to bake awesome red velvet cupcakes.

I shared.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Sunday, February 13, 2011


As I prowled around the garden this morning relishing the subtle warmth from the sun, I discovered that there are blooms on the blueberry bush!

The bokeh background is the sunlight reflecting on some aluminum foil (or tin foil as most people in the south say it). Sunny days make me so happy!

Friday, February 11, 2011

That warm sensation

Where I live, the weather is somewhat cold unless you are standing in the sun. Or unless you are sitting where a particular student was sitting while in my office this afternoon.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Feed me

It is a sad day when the people are too busy to remember to feed the dog.

Not to worry. Treats have been given and food has been devoured.

All is right in her little world now.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Little children, headache; big children, heartache ~ Italian proverb

One part of my job is sitting on tribunals when dealing with students with serious behavior issues from other schools. The decisions we make can be life changing for these students. And usually not in a good way.

Some of the chances these students have been given are astounding. Some of the conditions these students live in are deplorable. Some of the parents these students have are ridiculous.

Sometimes, I wish I could sit on a tribunal to determine consequences for some parents. I'd probably lose less sleep that way.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

For just a moment

We finally made it home from the conference and visiting with the girls. Since it was a gorgeous day, I went for a walk around the house. For just a moment, a robin scolded me. I got one picture before she flew away.

I hope she comes back.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


Over breakfast with the husband and daughters about hopes and dreams and lessons learned. I'm reminded once again that life is good.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Not boring in my world this week

And I'm ready for some boring.

Several events culminated in a most sleepless night last night. I could feel that lack of sleep on my long run in the rain.

Work... four kids in college.... I could bend your ear for hours.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Being a pansy

The word pansy has always had a negative connotation when describing someone. It implies that the person is a weakling.

Yet every winter I'm always impressed with how these *delicate* flowers hold up in the freezing temperatures. They are way tougher than most.

So, how is it that this association came to be? We should be calling tough people pansies. That would just make more sense.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

How he looks

My husband...
Hard worker.
Big flirt.
Fabulous father.
Caring husband.
Great step-father.
On permanent laundry restriction.
Addicted to his leaf blower.
Impulsive and busy.
Toilet seat putter downer.
Cleaner of the shower.
Forgetful of where the dishwasher lives.
Fantastic cook.

My best friend!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

What she does

When Mili sees birds, she licks her lips.

In her dreams....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


Sometimes bad things happen to good people.
Sometimes it reminds me to focus on my real priorities.
Sometimes there is a bit of good news.
Sometimes people beat the odds.

Sometimes life can seem scary.
Sometimes life is suddenly calm.

5/52 Not the way I wanted to start my Sunday

It is official. Horatio has died. And I am without a computer. So... I've had to learn to live without him....

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Winter bloom and bokeh

One of the good things about living in the south with our hot summers and mild winters (and by mild I mean that the temperature doesn't tend to go below 20 degrees) and our acidic soil is the camellia bush. Camellia blooms add a much needed splash of color to help us get through the winter months.

Today, it is going to be a beautiful, sunny day with the high of 70 degrees (21 for my Celsius friends). That just makes me happy! And it makes me feel a bit a guilty because my youngest son's weather has a high of 32 degrees (0 Celsius) today.

Now I'm off for a long run - one that I'll actually enjoy now that the temperature is so nice.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bunny visit

Paula the bunny is visiting this week and she loves the chance to roam about the yard.

It is possible (probable) that she is smarter than the dog.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Bud Light

I love these buds because they promise that spring will come again. And I love the light that makes the background look like a fabulous painting.

I would also love to get caught up at work and find a little extra time for nothing in particular.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

4/52 There is no almost in terms of crossing the street

This picture was totally inspired by a picture my husband bought years ago. The hardest part about creating this scene was keeping the dog away from the banana.

Well, and getting off and on the bike with my short legs.

Living in the land of tall trees

This weekend has been full of helping the husband in catering. Last night, as I was heading home, I kept getting a glimpse of the moon as it was hanging low in the sky. Because there are so many tall pines and large oak trees, it was most difficult trying to get a clear shot. This was the best I got before the clouds moved back in.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Three Months Ago

My husband and I decided we wanted a new kitchen table. After much discussion and much agreeing to disagree we finally agreed! Now we have an awesome, one-of-a-kind, stainless steel table.

Too bad we haven't yet agreed on chairs....

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Dealt with misplaced anger several times today. Anger from others. Not me.

"What can I do to make this better?" I try to make problems better.

"Make (insert perceived problem) go away" was the usual answer.

I think the signs are pointing for me to become a magician in my next life! Or possibly an eraser.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Each year, I set goals for the upcoming year (some people call them resolutions but I think that they are just being show-offs). Personally, I like to set one goal that makes me stretch a bit (l have fond memories of "having" to take a picture every day) and one goal that is just for fun (hence why I "had" to buy some clothes in the color green to help me achieve my goal of wearing more green).

This year, my stretch goal is to run 1000 miles in 2011. My fun goal is to eat more foods that are orange. And by orange foods I mean oranges, sweet potatoes, carrots and cheetos. I am really liking this goal!