Sunday, February 28, 2010

A Day At The Park

Yesterday Ryan and I woke up to see a beautiful Saturday morning! With all of the snow, rain, and cold weather lately it was nice to finally see the sunshine. Even though we had plenty of grown-up responsibilities, we took a break and decided to go over to see our nieces. We took them to the park in their neighborhood. I love getting to spend time with Kayden and Kiersi. Right now they are 2 and 3 years old, which makes for fun little kid conversations. I also love seeing Ryan play with them. One day he is going to be an amazing dad.

The girls spun me around in a bucket. Woah! That thing makes you dizzy!

We played around on the giant wheel. Ryan spun us and

it felt like going down hill on a roller coaster.

We swung together on the big swing.

And then we went home and played Barbies! I gave them lots of Barbie stuff for Christmas so this was pretty exciting for me! Check out Barbie's purple and pink convertables! Do they make those cars for real people? I love all of the little Barbie pieces and furniture. I'm glad the girls can share my love for Barbie. Uncle Ryan did a good job playing Barbies too.

Let's Go Mavericks

2 weekends ago Ryan and I got to go the Mavericks game. We had bought tickets a long time ago and where excited to finally get to go. I used to be a huge MAVS basketball fan, but I'll admit that in the past couple of years I've dwindled. Still, it was so fun to get to go to a game.

The night we went the MAVS were playing the Miami HEAT. I thought, "Alright I will get to see Shaq!" Oh...I did not realize he no longer plays for the HEAT. Bummer. Anyway, before the game started we got our food from the concession stand. I was happy to see that they had a State Fair booth that sold Fletcher's corny dogs. I ordered one and asked if I could just get a cup of water. They lady said "Sure, but it will be a small cup." I assumed she meant small in comparison to the large 64 ounce souvenir cup that your $6 soda comes in. Wrong again. She meant the small cups they give you to enjoy your refreshment on an airplane. So there I was with my giant corny dog and doll sized cup of water. What a laugh!

As we were walking to our seats I realized that apparently it was giant night at the game. Everyone around us was huge! The people by us in line to buy food, the people at the gift shop, the people on the escalator that took us to our 3rd balcony seats, even the people on both sides of us! I realize that Ryan and I are both short, but I guess most of the people we are around in normal everyday life are either short too or at least average. So many people there had to be at least 7 feet tall. Even some women1 So out of respect to the giants we sat low and close together in our seats, making sure to give the giants plenty of room.

During half time we also found out that Ryan's best friend Cooper was at the game too! We met up with him towards the end of the game. Here is Ryan, short, standing next to Cooper, tall.
The MAVS won the game and we went home happy!

Say Cheese!

Ah, school picture day. It's a big deal in kids' lives. In elementary school, it's the day your mom makes you dress up in a way that is quite impractical considering that you will probably be playing on the playground a few minutes after you take your picture. In junior high it becomes a day that you have to create your perfect look because you know that all of your friends will want a wallet size copy of your picture to tape on their trapper keeper or post in their locker. By high school, I don't think it was as big of a deal, but in my high school at least, we were given the benefit of getting to take our picture on the day in summer that we picked up our schedule, so at least we could wear what we wanted. The only dreadful part of high school was that if you had a bad picture, it was definitely your yearbook photo. Good luck.
Ironically, every year that my kids take pictures, I have to take a picture too. Understandable, the school needs a professional photo of me too. But, why do I get a free package of these photos? What am I supposed to do with 8 wallets, 2 5X6's and 1 8X10 of myself? Mail it to grandparents? I think that's what wedding photos are for. Set it on my desk, where only I and my kids would see it? Give it to my husband to put in his wallet? Thank goodness for camera phones that allow him to take real life photos of me. So instead, each year these pictures stay in their envelopes in the top drawer of my desk. Maybe I'll be famous one day and can autograph them.

Caught on Camera

You never can be sure what your dog is doing while you're gone.
Sometimes we think that Cosby just lays on his pillow all day.
But you never can tell....Caught checking his facebook

Relaxing with a good book

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day! I love my husband Ryan so much. He is so funny and supportive! I love how he makes me laugh. I love the life we're building together. Every day I thank God for him and pray that I can always be a loving wife to him.
We actually did most of our Valentine's celebration yesterday because Ryan has to help out at the Olive Garden today! We started off our weekend by driving to Dallas on Saturday morning to help my grandparents move.

My grandparents, Papa and Dede
My grandparents are an amazing example of love and marriage. They just celebrate their 55th anniversary 10 days ago. I can only imagine the amount of love and patience to make a marriage last that long! My grandma Dede still giggles when she mentions her honeymoon and what life was like when they first got married. She still tells the story of how she almost broke up with my grandpa because she though he was too shy, but then he took her to a dance and when she saw him do the Charleston, she knew he was a keeper! About 2 years ago they sold the house they had build themselves back in the 1950's.

To me, this was the most perfect house in the world. It always reminded me of the Father of the Bride house. It had huge rooms for all of our family gatherings and lots of "hidden" passage ways. When I was a kid I ran a secret spy organization out of the play room upstairs. I always dreamed of getting married in the backyard, but they sold it right before I got engaged. This weekend was the 2nd move for my grandparents. First they moved into a retirement community in Dallas and now they are moving into an assisted living apartment so that they can enjoy their time together more and get help remembering the day to day necessities. I hope they are still so happy to be together, even though their new place is much smaller than their dream home.

After helping pack things, Ryan and I went to Northpark mall in Dallas to do some shopping! After long minutes of searching the parking garage I tried to park on top of the garage. Usually this works out for me, but apparently not on days were there are still several inches of snow on the top of the lot. I almost got stuck! It was also NBA All-Star weekend in Dallas and the mall was quite busy. I even heard that Beyonce had been there earlier! Good thing I wasn't there at the same time. The fans might do a double- take (read earlier blog about celebrity look alikes).

Ryan eating his Valentine's slice of cookie cake.
I got some delicious Gelato.

As we shopped I did realize one very interesting trend. Apparently some people continue to leave their sunglasses on, even inside a building as it's getting dark. Hmm. I did not follow their trend. But I did get lots of stuff. Ryan and I both had tons of giftcards left over from Christmas. At the time we had already gotten presents so we had just set our giftcards aside to use at a later time. Ryan also still had birthday money from October! All of these factors made for one very fun, basically free day of shopping! Plus Express had 30% off most of their stuff and we had several coupons! We felt so thrifty.

We came home and laid out all of our finds. Seriously, we got most of this with giftcards and coupons! Plus a little bit of it is our Valentine's gifts to each other. We are fabulous bargain shoppers! After our day of shopping we went to eat at Carraba's, again using a gift card! I got lobster mac and cheese, one of my favorite dishes. While we ate we got to watch the chefs cook. It was really interesting, but I forgot to take pics.

This morning we got up early before Ryan went to work and I made us a special Valentine's breakfast.

With my new apron- thanks Ryan!

Heart shaped pancakes

We dined off of our fine China. He drank chocolate milk from a Cowboy's glass and I had orange juice from a martini glass. When we celebrate, we go all out!

Finally my Valentine went off to work. Hopefully he won't have a crazy day and will come home ready to play! I think we're going to try to make it to the Denton Bible night service tonight since we couldn't go to our church this morning. Hope everyone has a day full of love and blessings.

Friday, February 12, 2010

All Snowed In

Yesterday morning I woke up a 6:15am and everything was snowy! When I went to bed around midnight, about 18 hours later, it was still snowing. Wow. What a beautiful day of snow God gave to us!

At first I thought I had to go into work yesterday. But at 7:00 am, just as I had finished my hair and makeup, I got the official call that canceled school! Yes! I was so content to return to my pajamas and spend the morning with Ryan.

Around 10:00am we were downstairs in our living room and I saw that our neighbors across the parking lot were using a cup to clear ice off their car. "Oh no," I thought, "They don't have an ice scrapper!" Well we have several (p.s. if you ever see ice scrappers on sale I suggest buying a couple to last a while) so I decided to be helpful and offer them one. Put on boots. Check. Put on jacket. Check. Mittens. Check. Hat and scarf. Check. I walked outside. "Hello neighbor, I have an ice scrapper you can use!" My neighbor and her son give me an awkward look. Then she replies, "Oh we don't need an ice scrapper. We're collecting the snow off our car to build a snowman." So feeling slightly ridiculous to have offered unneeded help I trek back inside. Take off hat and scarf. Check. Take off mittens. Check. I think you get the picture.

A bit later Ryan asked me to help him scrape the ice off of HIS car so that he actually could drive to work. Then I got a great idea. "I'll get some extra plastic containers so that the neighbor kid can use our snow too!" Put boots on. Check. The process begins again.

We tromp outside and I get the buckets of snow and take them over to the neighbor and kid. They look at me awkwardly again. "Ummm, thank you. I think he has plenty of snow now."
Oh, okay. I just wanted to be friendly!

I do notice that by this time the neighbor's snow man is coming along quite well. I guess they didn't need my snow. Then I decided to build my own snow man. Ryan went to work. I spend the afternoon cleaning and working on a bit of school stuff.

A while later Ryan comes back home from work early since nobody wanted to eat Olive Garden during the blizzard! Hurray! We went back out into the snow and made a snowman, had a snowball fight, and raced through the snow! It is so rare that Texas gets snow and this is actually our 3rd time this winter for a real snowstorm. And this time it was actually about 8 inches!

A picture of our neighbors' snowman, taken through our living room window. I'm a creeper.

My first snow man, Blobby. I kind of failed.

Snowmen are better when 2 people work together. Here is our prodigy:

Mr. Jake Pavelka, the Snowman

Hello, Jake the Snowman!

He's buddies with Ryan.

After our day of snow fun we slowly drove to Blockbuster to get a movie. We decided to rent Up! I had heard that it was good but I had no idea. It is such a sweet story of love and what adventure is about. Even though it's a cute cartoon, it has adult connections (appropriate adult connections). I laughed and cried. I wanted to watch it again as soon as it was over.

Young Carl and Ellie after they get maried.

I want a mailbox like this!

There was so much snow and ice that I got another day off today (Friday)! Ryan and I slept in and then we made a big breakfast together. It was the best French toast I'd ever made! I always appreciate getting to sit at the table together when we eat. I think sitting at the table creates a peaceful time to just be together and talk. I hope that even when we have kids one day we still sit together and eat as a family.

When Ryan left for work I went back over to be friends with the neighbors. Just kidding! Ha, won't make that awkward mistake again. No really, I do like getting to know people, but maybe I just misjudge situations. What I really did was watch the movie Sabrina. I first saw this movie when I was about 12 and it's always been a picture of romance in my mind. I remember watching it with my childhood best friend Valerie and being awestruck when Sabrina returns from Paris all grown up.

Sabrina, after she's grown up, with the 2 brothers who both fall in love with her.

My plan for the rest of the day is to relax and maybe read. Our staff is supposed to have staff development on Monday, but we went early in August so I actually have off from school on Monday too! What a wonderful 5 day weekend!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Not Every Teacher Can Be A Rap Star

Yesterday at school my kids were learning more about how to tell time. We've been working on this during our daily calendar time since school started but right now we're focusing in on it and starting to hold the kids accountable for knowing how to read a clock. When I'm teaching I love to use songs. I think they're a good way to help kids remember skills and strategies, plus its just fun to stand up and sing and dance with 18 2nd graders! For telling time I have a "rap" that talks about how the short hand tells the hour and the long hand tells the minute and goes over how you have to count by 5's to tell the minutes.
So, we're getting ready to start math and I said, "Y'all are so lucky to have a teacher who is also a great rapper!" And then one of my cute little boys responds, "Yeah, you're good at wrapping presents!" Hahaha, oh the wit of an 8 year old. I guess he was implying that I'm not quite the rap star I imagined myself to be. I love it when my kids throw me off and make me giggle so much I have to pause for a second. Its moments like this that remind me that part of being a good teacher is relating to my kids with humor. I think positive laughter (laughing with them, not at them) is a way of encouraging them and making school a fun place to be. Maybe next time we sing the time rap I need to carry a boom box and wear a hat sideways....

Monday, February 1, 2010

Has anyone ever told you that you look just like....

Beyonce? Umm, no. I have honestly never been told that I look like Beyonce. Until last night! After the recent facebook game of finding a celebrity that you look like I went to one of those "Who is my celebrity look-alike?" websites where you upload a photo and it analyzes your features. Now, I think Beyonce is gorgeous. However I'm pretty sure that when I pose for pictures no one is mistaking me for her.

Here are some of my other funny celeb look alikes:

Mary Kate Olsen (but not her twin?)
Sarah Michelle Gellar - watch out vampires!

Ashley Tisdale
This is the picture I used to find my look alike. Don't be confused.

It's me and Ryan in the picture. Not Beyonce and Jay Z.

Of all the people in the world that I actually do look like, I would say the closest is my best friend Erica. People tell us that we look alike ALL the time. Even our moms. We realize that we don't look like identifccal twins but we do have features that make us closely resemble each other. And I am honored to look like her because Erica is very beautiful! So Erica, if you could please fulfill your dream of becoming an actress then I would have a celebrity look alike. Until then I will continue to get mistaken by the Paparazzi.