Sunday, March 31, 2013

90/365 Springy

This morning, there were only two of us stupid enough who got up way too early for the weekly long run.  Somewhere around mile 6, I tripped and fell.  My running partner and I laughed and laughed.  I brushed the dirt off as best I could and we went on our merry little way.

About 2 minutes later, my running partner tripped on a different part of the sidewalk and fell.  We could hardly run because we were laughing so hard.

There was a lady on the walking down the sidewalk that didn't respond at all and that was probably the funniest part.  Seriously, how do you keep a poker face when two ladies do some sidewalk surfing?

She probably thought we were drunk.

89/365 Passover Seder

We finally had our seder last night.  The man and I spent the day cooking and cleaning and getting everything in place.  This was one of the most relaxed and fun Passover meals we've ever had.

Yarmulkes for the dudes.

Friday, March 29, 2013

88/365 Yes, we have some bananas

Every day, I call my mom to check on her and just to touch base with her.  It means so much to her and it really is a little thing to do.  Today, when she answered the phone, she sounded so pitiful and in so much pain.  She'd been feeling nauseous and sick all day.

I went by her house and took her to the doctor.  My poor mom.  She had a serious stomach bug and was on the verge of being dehydrated.

Clear liquids today.  BRAT diet tomorrow.  After I got her back home, I went to the grocery store to get Gatorade, Ginger Ale, bananas and her medicine.

I'm hoping she is a lot better tomorrow.

87/365 Where stories begin...

Sometimes the situations that students are in make me feel helpless.  Absolutely helpless.  And I don't like feeling helpless.

As I recounted the awful tale, my husband listened.  I appreciate how my husband has learned how to listen... to really listen.  His understanding helped me feel empowered even if it is was just for a moment.

After I quit talking, we went to the local art center so that I could drop off two pictures that I'm entering into an art contest.  The lady volunteering at the desk is a former teacher of mine and my parent's neighbor.  When she said she didn't know I was an artist, I quickly told her I wasn't.  That I just messed around with photography.

We got back in the truck to head out to a friend's house where we'd been invited for dinner.  I told my husband how I felt like such a fraud dropping off work at the art center.  Who am I kidding?  I'm just pretending to be an artist.

Again, my husband understood and listened.  He didn't try to change my mind or tell me how to fix something.  There is such healing in just being heard.

That was when I knew that while I can't fix the situation for some of my students, I can listen.  I can understand.  And I hope that can be enough to empower them.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

86/365 Tea time

I woke up headache free this morning and wanted to click my heels.  Then I went to work and the discipline referrals started.

I actually like doing the discipline at school because it is a chance to hear the students and work with them to correct their behavior. Only today, I reached that point of just being overwhelmed.  I had kids sitting in various states all over my office and I felt like I was triaging through the most critical issues.

But my headache was gone.  And it stayed away.

Two more days and then we are out for a week of spring break!  I'm more ready for this break than the kids are, I promise.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

85/365 The headache

I don't get headaches very often but when I do, I remember that I don't get them very often.  Maybe I've been thinking too much.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

83/365 Doggie Love

On my long run this morning, a black lab came out of the darkness to run with me and my running partners.  We swatted at him and pleaded for him to go home.

He didn't.

He ran all the way back to our starting point (about 5 miles away) and happily played in the rain.  Before we left, I got him in my car and took him home with me.

Mili was less than pleased.

This afternoon, we went knocking on doors until we found the owners.  I had been calling the pup Miles because he ran with us.  His real name is Smoke -- and that is a way cooler name.

Now all is calm in Mili's world.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

82/365 Sailing away

The rain hadn't yet started when I took Dalton to the airport to fly back to college.  By the time he reached Atlanta, the rain and thunder had reached us in the southern part of the state.  Perfect weather for sending the boy away.  He will be missed.

Initially, I planned to come home to lie about reading and sleeping.  Instead, I edited way too many pictures from the wedding last weekend and I backed up the computer (with the help of Drew -- man, I love having live in technology help).

I made a paper boat and it floated for a few minutes.  I love a rainy Saturday at home.

Friday, March 22, 2013

81/365 Even though it isn't Saturday

The dog got a bath today.  She doesn't love to get clean.  And right after being dried off, she ran outside to roll around in the grass and dirt.

She still smells better than when she did this morning.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

80/365 My favorite part

My youngest son has been home from college for the past couple of weeks.  Each morning, I get to wake him up so that he can drive me to work so that he can have the car.  He may be man sized now but he still looks like the boy he used to be when he is sleeping.  It makes my heart sing.

We talk all the way to work in the morning and all the way home in the afternoon.  When he is home, these chauffeured rides are my favorite part of my day.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

79/365 The longest week ever

I woke up this this morning thinking that it was Thursday.  That is all.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

78/365 "Better to live one year as a tiger than a hundred as a sheep." ~ Madonna

Yesterday we were bemoaning the fact that the accreditation team was not coming in the morning.  We wanted them to come sooner rather than later and just be done with the whole process.  Then the car ran into the log truck in front of the school first thing this morning backing up traffic down the highway.

Before all the buses had arrived, the puke-fest (AKA stomach virus) was sweeping through the house (and on a couple of buses).  Lawd, at how fast the upchucks can be passed on.  We had already sent 6 children home before 9 a.m.

When the accreditation team did arrive a little after noon, things seemed calm and the puking seemed contained.  We smiled and nodded and they did, too.  By the time they left, they seemed happy and supportive.  The rest of us felt relieved and drained. It has been a lot of work leading up to the visit this afternoon and we were ready for this to be a part of history.

On the ride home, Dalton (he is my chauffeur while he is on spring break) and I recapped our days.  As we pulled into the carport, I couldn't help but laugh at the wildcat head from our local high school's football team sitting on a barrel (the man found it at the junkyard today).  As I came into the house and settled in for the day, I kept passing the carport window and seeing the cat head.  Each time, it made me laugh -- and that is what I want to remember about this day.

Monday, March 18, 2013

77/365 Sometimes I'm just a blur

This really is my office.  And I really took this picture with a crying child sitting at my table (What?!  You have to write at school?  Now that is just crazy talk.).  As I had the camera propped up and I was moving around, he lifted up his head and just stared.

And then he started doing his writing assignment.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

76/365 The merry-go-round

Life has seemed unusually busy lately and today was no different.  I actually skipped out on my long run this morning but sleep was still elusive.   My right knee was swollen from all the times I lunged and plopped to the ground to take pictures yesterday so a day of rest probably wasn't a bad idea.

I did go get a pedicure and that was nice.  Afterwards, we rushed to a going away party and then rushed home to prepare dinner for the family and six additional people.

I need to figure out how to put down my foot and slow this merry-go-round of life for a little while.  

Now You
52 of You - Details

Happy Green Frog Leg's Day!

75/365 There was love...

This was the first big wedding I've photographed and let's just say that I have a better understanding why photographers charge what they do for wedding pictures.  It is mentally exhausting, stressful (are you going to miss the critical moments?), and physically taxing.  The wedding was perfect and it was an absolute pleasure to photograph Fayris and Matt on their wedding day.  They were awesome and they and their wedding party had a fantastic sense of humor.  Plus, the wedding was at a fabulous historic home.  It really was a lovely wedding on a perfectly beautiful spring day.  

I spent just over 8 hours taking pictures.  By the time I got home, my neck, arms and shoulders were a bit sore from holding up a camera for so many hours.  But it was my knees that took a beating.  I plopped down so many times on my knees that they were fabric burned, bruised and swollen.  My husband said they looked like the knees of an eight year old. 

When I got home last night, I looked at each and every picture taken (almost 1,500).  After the first perusal, I was still left with just over 1,100.  How do you pick just one picture of the day from that?  

I finally decided on this one.  I like the look of happiness on the guest (who was so pleased that I liked his sunglasses and willingly helped get this shot) and I love the reflection of the newly married couple.  

I love how sweet Fayris looks in this picture. It was the perfect mix of the grown up Fayris and the little girl I watched grow up.

This was my absolute favorite moment of the day -- the first look. You could absolutely see and feel the love they have for each other.

The groom and groomsmen decided to act like girls about the ring. 


The bride and bridesmaids knew how to have fun, too!

The great getaway... the birdseed made the birds oh so happy!

Friday, March 15, 2013

74/365 An interesting concoction

My family gathered at a local Mexican restaurant for dinner tonight.  Afterwards, my sister and I stayed to celebrate a birthday of a friend of ours.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

73/365 "Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength." ~ Corrie ten Boom

I stand like that sometimes with my hands on my hips.  I can see my mother in my hands and in that pose.

I stand like that when I am listening.  When I am worrying.

I don't think I will ever get used to what poverty does to students.  Six moves since August.  Living in a sleazy hotel which is a step up from the house with holes in the floor.  Wondering if there enough food for everyone.  Lying to protect the parents when there isn't.

Today, my heart hurt for several students.

Now You
52 of You - Details

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

72/365 A gaggle of girls

Almost every Wednesday, I meet some friends for speed work at the track right after work.  I seriously don't love speed work (it is hard!) but meeting friends makes it worthwhile.  We always end up laughing after we catch our breath.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

71/365 "We build too many walls and not enough bridges." ~ Isaac Newton

Lots of conversation today in back to back parent meetings.  Lunch ended up being a spoon full of peanut butter.

Monday, March 11, 2013

70/365 The front lobby

I pass by and through the front lobby of my school multiple times a day.  There is a lot of action that happens in this space.

I like it when the wind is blowing because the flag looks spectacular in the window.

69/365 Hello, caffeine

Woke up early to meet a friend for a 10 mile run (man, the first day of daylight savings time is rough!).

Rushed home to eat breakfast and clean the house.

Typed notes for my husband as he met with a bride and her fiance about their upcoming wedding that he is catering (we did get to go eat some Indian food -- Bonus!).

Sat down for a moment before another bride and groom and the family came to meet with my husband.  For just a moment (but business is picking up -- yay, economy!).

Met with the next family (hands down the pickiest bride AND groom I've ever met -- but nice).

Baked oatmeal cookies and lemon bars for the family (did laundry, too).

Fixed supper with the husband for the boys and my sister and her husband.

Cleaned the kitchen and went straight to bed (what happened to my day of rest?).

And that's a wrap....

Now You
52 of You - Reflections

Saturday, March 9, 2013

68/365 Home

We drove to the Jacksonville Airport to pick up Dalton.

He is home!

He left snowy and cold Connecticut to spend spring break in Georgia.  His plans?  To sleep and study.

He has been struggling with burn-out this school year and told us tonight that he plans to just live and work in New Haven for the summer.  No classes.  None.  He has totally changed his mind about grad school, too.  I think the Quantum Physics and the Electro Magnetism classes are sucking the wind out of him.

I'm thinking that if he stays up there for the summer, a road trip in June might be in order.

Friday, March 8, 2013

67/365 Busy as bees

My friend, Ben, showed me his bees today.  He was looking for the queen but she was not waving her wave so we couldn't find her.  

Also, Ben has baby chickens on his porch.  I want one (really, I want two)!

It was a great way to kick off the weekend! 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

66/365 No Swimming

Today, I tested the students who missed the 5th grade writing assessment yesterday.  And then I had to pack up the tests and run them across town to our board of education office.  I've always been intrigued by this little bit of swamp so I stopped to take a few pictures.

No swimming indeed!  We live in the land of water moccasins and alligators.

That sign had to be placed there for the people who didn't grow up in South Georgia.  There is no way I'd ever risk the gator death roll for a swim with the cypress knees.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

65/365 I could just cry on your shoulder

My favorite tree broke!  The tree that has red leaves.  The tree that was trying to rebound.  The tree that is right outside my window when I work at my desk.  It broke.

Darn wind.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

64/365 This boy

He melts my heart.  It is always a good day when it is a Ray day.

Monday, March 4, 2013

63/365 13 and half hours

It was the last half hour that was the longest.

Tonight, my school hosted the school board work session.  Basically, it is a dog and pony show but we only have to do it once a year.

This is my the desk where I let the teacher's kids and good students sit and draw and play.  It was as creative as I could get after a long day at work.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

62/365 She soothes my soul and worries my mind

It has been almost 6 years since the surgery on Mili's spine from the disk blowout that paralyzed her.  Since then, she has not been in control of her bathroom.  As a result, we tiled the house, steam mop the floor regularly and wash a lot of towels.

It has been hard.

Over the past couple of weeks, things have gotten worse.  Mili now leaks almost all of the time. Diapers were purchased but they just don't work.  Things are changing in her health and it worries me that we will soon have to make some decisions.

And that has been harder.

61/365 In the light

I've always seen my eyes as green but in sunlight from the window, they almost look blue.  That little brown spot above the iris is an inheritance from my father.  I love that I have his eyes and his blonde eyelashes.

Now You
52 of You - Eyes

Saturday, March 2, 2013

60/365 On the learning curve

Right now, I'm on the bottom end of that learning curve.  So painful!  I bought Photoshop CS6 about a month ago and it has just been sitting there.  I've spent most of the morning just trying to figure out the basics.  It makes me want to wail and gnash my teeth.

My poor husband has had to listen to me whine.

Why, oh, why do they have to make that program so user unfriendly?  I've watched videos on YouTube and I've got two books (even the Dummies version) and they make me want to say bad words.  It just doesn't make much sense yet.

I'm trying to stick with it.  I hope it is worth it.

This picture is the first and only picture I've edited in photoshop.  It was taken yesterday right before I left to go to a retirement party for a friend.

Anyone want to fly to south Georgia and hold my hand while I learn CS6?

Friday, March 1, 2013

59/365 The Happy Hedgehog

It hangs in my car.

Think happy.  Be happy.

Always good advice.