Thursday, January 31, 2013

31/365 The best part

 The best part was that I was twirling whilst wearing a horse mask.

My husband just kept working.

My son said, "I'm afraid to ask."

Mili barked.

And I felt like a kid for a moment.

My youngest son bought this mask several years ago. He said he bought it to keep in the car "just in case." He brought it home from college recently and now I get to use it. Maybe I should keep it in the car, too.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

30/365 It was a Bob Seger kind of day

You know... against the wind.

It wasn't a bad day but it did start with a meeting with a super rude parent.  Acorns and trees and we wonder no more about where the kid gets his terrible behavior.

There is another child I'm super worried about.  I can't talk about it but the situation weighs heavy on me.  All the powers that be are involved but still, I just don't have a good feeling.

After work, I dragged myself out the track to meet my running partner for our usual Wednesday speed work session.  I didn't feel like running in the windy weather (a storm was brewing).  But as we ran and we talked, I felt better and better.  Running improves my optimism.

Now, I'm peacefully listening to the rain as it pounds the skylight.  Maybe it really will all be ok.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

29/365 Whimsical little cosmo

The man and I really need to spend a weekend weeding in the garden.  Already I've been thinking about what flowers I want to put in all the pots along the brick pathway.  It is still way too soon to plant spring plants though the layers of pollen are trying to convince us otherwise.  

Apparently, one of last year's cosmos reseeded in the grass.  I thought about plucking that flower and wearing it in my hair but decided to let it keep growing in the yard.  That way I can enjoy it longer.

Monday, January 28, 2013

28/365 That moment before it goes POP!

Right after work... after a buggy day at work (lice is never any fun... and I think I want to take another shower)... I went to get some lettuce for supper which led to the idea of putting chili on the salad and that reminded me of how much love I have for the Sweet Chili Doritos.  Yes, I eat salad just so I can put Sweet Chili Doritos on them.  Healthy, yes?

Oh, and the point here was that in an effort to be whimsical, I bought some bubble gum.  I actually had to get someone to help me find bubble gum (bottom shelf and to the right in the check-out line).  When did bubble gum become so scarce?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

27/365 A little luck

While helping my husband move the metal tree to the backyard (a much more difficult task than one would imagine as the width of the tree was wider than the width of the gate), I looked down and saw a four-leafed clover.

A little luck never hurt, right?

Saturday, January 26, 2013

26/365 Young love

The daughter of a friend of mine is getting married in a few weeks.  Today, I took some engagement pictures of sweet couple.

I've watched this girl grow up.  In fact, I used to drive her to school with my boys.  Whenever there was a break, she used to write sweet notes to me and I still have them in my happy box at school.

When she introduced me to her fiance, she said, "This is Beth.  She is like another mom to me."  It made me catch my breath for just a moment.  We had a great afternoon as we drove out to the countryside.  He is kind and by the end of our afternoon, I gave him my seal of approval.  He is getting a great girl for a wife.

25/365 Cowboy take me away

Just for fun, the man and I jumped in the truck and went cruising up Highway 41.  We drove through six small towns, occasionally stopping or driving off the main highway just to look around.  The temperature was in the upper 60s allowing us to have the sunroof open.  The breeze, the setting sun, the music on the radio... it was such a peaceful evening -- and a perfect date night. 

We ended by eating at a little Thai restaurant before turning around to go back home. 

 We passed a carnival graveyard.  We passed some recycling places, metal scrap yards, a cypress mulch place... it was all rustic and awesome! 

 The parking lot as we arrived at the Thai restaurant. 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

24/365 A success story

Today, we found out one of our students won the 1st place in the local poetry contest for MLK, Jr. Day.  Her poem was beautiful and emotionally haunting -- such a strong and clear voice.

Earlier this year, I had to have several conversations with this student about her behavior.  About the way she treated other students.

Sometimes a mean girl can learn to be nice again.  Just thinking about how happy she looked when she saw her proud parents makes me smile again.  

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

23/365 And then they spoke

Last night, the temperature dipped down to the freezing level -- barely to that level but just enough to talk sternly to all the flowers in bloom.  The blooms crossed my mind as I backed out of my driveway in my heated car this morning.  I'm confused by our wishy-washy weather, so I can only imagine the confusion of the flowers all in bloom.

As the sun rose, the indecisive weather warmed.  On my drive home, I clicked on the AC with a smile on my soul in the bright sunlight and warm temperatures.  At home, I walked around the yard to see what the plants had thought about the previous evening's frost.

Those tough and beautiful blooms raised their voices and sang in the setting sunlight.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Monday, January 21, 2013

21/365 Our Sky

A day off... a beautiful day off from work.

I started the day with a run and then moved on to admire dandelions.  Later the laundry and things around the house called my attention.  And watching the inauguration.

So moved by Richard Blanco's "One Today."  This particular line really stood out:  "We head home: through the gloss of rain or weight of snow, or the plum blush of dusk, but always—home, always under one sky, our sky."

Sunday, January 20, 2013

20/365 Birding

Sitting in the neighbor's yard... watching the birds... listening... just taking in the experience.

It seems so wild that we have hummingbirds in January.  Then again, this little lady Ruby Throated Hummingbird could have flown south from Canada.  Winter is so much less winter in Georgia than many other places. 

I sat there for a long time trying to capture the Orioles.  They are just so elusive. 

There were male cardinals.  This was right over my head.

And there were female cardinals.

 And finally an Oriole that close enough for me to capture.

They were very skittish and hard to photograph -- but fascinating! I loved watching them drink the hummingbird nectar.  

Saturday, January 19, 2013

19/365 I wanted Orioles... I got pansies

I sat in my neighbors yard waiting quietly for the Orioles to come out to eat so that I could get a cool Oriole picture... before being distracted by the very tiny bee on this pansy.

The Orioles just kept hiding.  They must be very sneaky birds,

Friday, January 18, 2013

18/365 Magic

The students were enthralled at the magic show at school.  Really, the guy was pretty awesome!

I wish I could use some of that magic for some particular students to make their lives easier.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

17/365 Afternoon light

Tomorrow is Friday and I am so very, very happy about that.  It rained most of the day.  This afternoon, the sun came out and the wind blew in cold gusts.  I guess it is still winter after all.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

16/365 Pink Explosion

I know... I know... I've already taken a picture of a Japanese magnolia bloom this week.  But these blooms won't be around for long.  In fact, tonight, it is supposed to start raining bringing along some winter weather with the falling precipitation.  That winter weather isn't usually very kind to blossoms and they will likely wither away.

I'm just appreciating the explosion of blossoms while we have them.  Besides, the only other picture I have for today is of the incriminating water bottle filled with pee.  Boys!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

15/365 Nervousness and calmness at the spelling bee

We had our school wide spelling bee today.  The kids did great!  Some were all but shaking from nerves and others seemed laid back and comfortable.

I'm a pretty good speller and back when I was 9 years old I was in the spelling bee in front of the whole school.  I got so nervous that I forgot the letter "r" in the word "shirt."

Yeah.  I didn't get to live that one down for a long time.

Monday, January 14, 2013

14/365 Bloom

A couple of weeks ago, I decided that "bloom" would be my word of the year.  When I was trying to think of what word to choose, this is the word that kept rolling around in my head and I decided to go with it.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

13/365 "It's what you do that makes your soul." ~ Barbara Kingsolver

The weather has been absolutely lovely -- warm and slightly breezy.  The birds sound like they think it is spring and some of the trees are already beginning to bloom.  I'm sure we'll have some more freezing days so I am enjoying the mild weather in the meantime.

My sweet husband helped me rearrange the sitting room so that I could make it my office.  I'm so excited about having a desk!  

My new desk!  The basket in the front will soon have a short stand underneath.  It will store things (camera gear) that I need easy access to.  I wanted a desk with no drawers.  I love, love, love the shelves on the side!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

12/365 "Happiness is an accident of nature, a beautiful and flawless aberration."~ Pat Conroy

It was a great day with the man.  Garage sales.  Wedding reception consulting (I took notes).  Mexican for lunch.  The hanging of the 12 foot tin lizard on the porch - Jiminy Eats Crickets.  Black eyed peas and rice.  Laundry.  The delivery of my new desk.

I had a lot to be happy about today.

Now You ~ Week 1 ~ At Arm's Length

Friday, January 11, 2013

11/365 Getting in on the action

Mili and I played briefly in the yard before the shenanigans began.  She doesn't pose well for the camera (she doesn't sit still well either) but I got her attention by holding up random debris from the yard.

Today is my step-dad's 80th birthday!  We had a birthday party for him at the house and my grandparents came, too.  My beautiful grandmother will turn 89 next week -- so we celebrated her day a little early while we were all together. Not to be forgotten, my cousin's daughter got in on the action with a cake of her own since we didn't get to see her while she celebrated her 7th birthday at her dad's house over the Christmas break.

There was a lot of cake.  And a lot of laughter.  It was a great way to spend a Friday night.

Early in the morning, way before the sun comes up, i'll have to take my youngest son to the airport for him to go back to his university.  I'll miss him.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

10/365 Gotta have style!

Some of my students have the coolest style!  I love the way they can pull off some funky attire!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

9/365 Back to good

This afternoon marked my first pain-free run outside since the marathon last month that wreaked havoc on my IT band.  And it made me extremely happy to be able to run outside again.

I've been resting... and doing the stretches... and working on building up some strength in some specific muscles.  Oh, and I ordered some awesome shoes that are supposed to help.

Sometimes it takes a setback to appreciate what you have.

On a different note, the kids came back today from their Christmas holiday.  We had several new students to enroll.  Two of those students are students with hearing impairments.  Be still my heart!  They are absolutely precious.  I've already learned a few signs -- thank you, bathroom, and seventeen.  I'm not sure why she wanted me to know 17 but I know it now.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

8/365 A random Tuesday

The man earned some points today by cooking an amazing meal!  It is so nice to come home from work to a house with the wonderful aroma of dinner cooking.  Fresh camellias were placed in the bowl and cloth napkins were used -- just because.

Monday, January 7, 2013

7/365 Room Available

Back to work today -- with only the teachers.  The students will return on Wednesday.  It was great to see everyone and to get organized for the second half of the year.  It felt good to be back at work.

It was a beautiful day with blue skies and fluffy white clouds... but the skies started turning gray as I drove home.  The empty bird's nest really stood out against the cloudy sky.  It felt great to be home.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

6/365 Crazy little thing called... winter

Our winter has been bipolar, to say the least.  It is warm and spring-like one day and then cold (relatively speaking) and rainy the next.

The plants are all confused -- and the azaleas in the backyard are blooming. But I'm not complaining!  I love mild winters.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

5/365 Old Friends

We spent the day at my grandparents so that we could visit with the family.  My grandmother's oldest friend came to spend the day, too.

When they get together, they get lost in their own conversation.

Friday, January 4, 2013

4/365 Horses with no name

Wild or not... I wanted to name those horses.

We spent the day on Cumberland Island.  How is it that I have lived 2 1/2 hours away from this island and never gone?  It was magical!

At first, we were only seeing evidence of horses (poop).  As we were walking on the beach, several horses came out of the dunes and ran down the beach for a short distance before disappearing back into the dunes.

There was so much to see and take in on this beautiful island.  I've never been camping but this girl might be convinced to give it a try on an island like Cumberland.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

3/365 Red leaves blooming

There are still little bright spots of color in leaves around town -- but just a few.  It was a rainy, rainy day.  The UPS driver made me happy by delivering my new lens.  I got a Canon 24-105 f/4 to be used as my everyday lens.  I've only taken a couple of pictures but it seems quick and clear.  

The youngest son slept until noon. Soon, he'll be a thousand miles away again. I like when he is home. I like that he eats cereal first no matter what time he wakes up.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2/365 I can see clearly now...

Actually, I can see better now that the glasses are off.  We found these glasses when we were moving into our house and I loved them and tucked them away for safe keeping.  Years later, I found them (again) when I was cleaning out some cabinets.

I'm seriously thinking about getting new lenses put into these frames.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

1/365 A new year begins

Day 1

The new year is already under way and is promising to be a great one.  I'm actually not a fan of resolutions (a firm resolve to do or not do something) but I do believe in setting goals (the object of a person's efforts).  Here is the plan for this year.

*Another 365 project.  I'm just going to keep on keeping on.

*Run 1000 miles. Since I'm still recovering from a knee injury, this makes me realize that I need to focus on some stretches and strengthening of certain muscles.  I think I will just aim for 1000 miles and then be ok with it if I don't quite make it.

*Read 60 books. I love to read.

*Learn how to use Photoshop.  I have the program and it makes no sense to me.  I suppose it will be a good program if I can ever figure out the specifics.  I've already found a class that I can take to teach me the basics.

*Write.  I would love to write a book one day but I know it'll never happen if I don't start trying.

*Start a book club.  Just because I've always wanted to be in one.  And I love to read and then talk about what I read.

*Clean out the clutter.  I am so much happier in my home when there is a place for everything.

*Learn sign language.  I've always wanted to learn sign language -- and now that two students who use sign language will be attending my school beginning next week, I am much more motivated to learn.

I know I've set some goals that will push me... but I am ready to be pushed.  The first three goals are just a continuation of what I'm already doing -- so they really aren't a stretch for me.  As for the others, I'd rather be challenged and miss the mark than just to aimlessly exist (I've been guilty of that for far too long).