Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas 2008

It has been wonderful spending time with family and friends! I've been back and forth between Hartford and Greenville three times in the past week! But that's okay. We did Christmas with my dad Sunday night and Christmas Eve with Troy's family at Carmin & Tracy's house. Then Christmas day, it was back to Hartford for the Gardner Christmas at Grandmama's. Then back to Greenville for Christmas with Troy's dad. WHEWW!!!

Christmas was wonderful. We enjoyed having Tristen over to spend time with and Ms. Janice, Troy's mom, has been staying there every weekend since her house almost burned! They will rebuild it after the New Year. It's pretty safe to say that both Troy & I spoiled Tristen for Christmas! It's fun having a youngster to buy for. He got a bow and an iPod shuffle along with a ton of clothes & shoes.

Of course, Coco and Buck got to come in for all the events! Buck acted like a big baby. Poor ole' Ann had to stay outside in the barn with her pups, who are growing! I'll get new pictures this week. They still haven't opened their eyes.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Gingerbread Cookies!

I actually made some cute Gingerbread cookies Sunday night for my students. They were SO easy. I just bought the Betty Crocker Gingerbread mix so all I had to do was add butter and a tablespoon of water and mix! My kind of baking! Now, the one thing they don't really tell you is that you need a lot of flour on the workspace or else the cookies will stick to your surface (it says to use sparingly, but that didn't work). I used a glass as a rolling pin and a gingerbread boy cookie cutter. Then I popped them in the oven for about 10 minutes!
Next I put a little icing outline on them. If I had of thought about it earlier, they would have been cuter, but I just didn't have time. Here's a little tip: if you just buy the vanilla icing in a can, you can scoop some out into a Ziploc, squish it all to one bottom corner, seal and snip off a little corner. Then you can squeeze out the icing in any shape, lines, etc. You can also add food coloring if you need other colors instead of buying all different flavors. (I also do this when making Deviled Eggs--put all of the yolks and good stuff into a big Ziploc, smash it up with my fingers, then cut off the bottom corner and squeeze it back into the whites). There's Martha for ya...

I made them because we made a Gingerbread Graph showing what part we ate first (math). It was fun and turned out cute! I enjoyed my Christmas cookie baking and plan on getting Tristen over here to make some more with me (if he wants) next week!

And here are my students on board to listen to The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg. I had to stamp their boarding ticket before they could "ride." We also learned cool facts about the North Pole (Arctic region) and documented them here in our podcast:'DocumentsCategory'&CategoryID=16262&iSection=Teachers&CorrespondingID=36967

I finally got my tree finished last week. My camera doesn't have a flash, though, so you can't really see it!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Ann Stinson's Puppies

Troy's sweet lab, Ann, had her puppies either late Friday night or in the wee Saturday morning hours (which was Troy's birthday--I prefer to think they share their birthdays). Poor ole' Ann is getting on up there in age. Troy thought he had gotten her to his Dad's to be fenced up when she was hot-to-trot, but apparently he wasn't quick enough!

There had been a beautiful Huskie hanging around the house and I thought for sure that he was the father. But these puppies are all chocolate labs like their mother! Troy thinks there is another chocolate lab down the road that could be the daddy. They are so precious! She had 10, but one passed this afternoon and I was so sad. I thought it was coming because he was cold and wouldn't get in there and suck on her teets. Sorry, had to throw that in there. I really was sad and teared up and hugged Annie. So if anyone wants a sweet lil' puppy, let me know!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

CoCo with St. Nick!

Sunday afternoon the Butler County Humane Society had Santa downtown at Confederate Park to take pictures with pets. It was really cute! I got Cokers a cute little red and white dress that said "Santa Baby" and Buck (Troy's pup) wore an elf hat. Tristen jumped in the picture too! (I'm not sure Santa was ready for Tristen to plop down on his knee). It was hard to get both dogs to cooperate. The real photographer got a better shot. Check out Santa's shoes! Coco thought she was something! She kept doing her 'pee-pee dance' where she kicks her feet really fast. She was showing off in her dress. Maybe if I ever have children, I won't obsess about the dog so much! But for now, she's my baby! You have to admit that she's cute!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Greenville's Christmas Parade

Greenville held it's Christmas Parade last night. Troy and I have been busy all week making a float for my little Pep Squad girlies to ride in. I had a vision in my head and for the first time in my life, it actually turned out like what I pictured! It was so cute. The theme was "Spirit of Christmas" so I decided to make a sleigh full of little elves who had the 'Christmas Spirit' (cheerleading spirit, of course!).

Troy was so sweet to help me get plywood and I attempted to draw a sleigh on it. He cut it out and we painted it red and I painted the back saying, "We've got Spirit, how 'bout u?" A few parents came out Wednesday night to put a few finishing touches on it.

The only bad part was that my camera doesn't have a flash and I never got a good shot of it all put together with the elves in it. However, we had a lot of fun riding on it (sitting on hay bales) and singing "Jingle Bells." We won 3rd place in the float contest! I can't believe I actually didn't tacky something up!

I am in the very top left corner helping to hold up little girls...I was dressed in full Elf attire...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Help with Christmas Float ideas!

Everybody knows that I'm not very creative. Sometimes I can see an idea in my head but I can't make it turn out right! And then, of course, I tacky it up. Real good at that.

So I need some help coming up with a cute Christmas float for my Pep Squad girlies. The theme is Spirit of Christmas (pretty much anything goes) and Mrs. Nancy thought a sleigh full of elves would be cute. And they have the elf hats at Dollar Tree. How can I make it and decorate it? I REALLY need some cute ideas.

I thought I could add a cheesy line like "Pep Squad Full of the Christmas Spirit!" or something along those lines (get it, cheerleaders~spirit...i know you get it!). Or maybe hang a cute sign on the back that says "We've got SPIRIT, how 'bout you?" And do spirit in red and green....thoughts please!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Nothing Much to Tell...

Well, Jill told me I better keep this updated so...Too bad I don't really have any news! Greenville lost Friday night to Briarwood Christian so we're out of the playoffs (and I will FINALLY have some free Friday nights). Tristen's Pee Wee team won their SuperBowl last week so finally have some free Saturday nights. My dance class started last week so that's what I'm doing on Tuesday nights! It's fun too, kind of an adult jazzercise group. I'm headed there now! And basketball starts soon, so there goes my other free nights. I may need to rethink this whole 'helping out with the cheerleaders' thing...

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

You've Gotta Read Twilight!

All the cheerleaders kept talking about these books and Kim (the other sponsor) raved about them too, so I had to try them. OMG, I got so addicted to them! I've only read the first two books in the series because Walmart is sold out of the last two and there's no Books-A-Million in Greenville. Guess I could order it online...

It's the Twilight saga by Stephenie Meyer and it's really a teenage book, I guess. But it's so good. It's about vampires but I couldn't put it down. I have read Twilight and New Moon and have Eclipse and Breaking Down to go. I haven't been able to read them in over a week and I'm having Edward and Bella withdrawals. I dreamed about these books and kept rewriting the chapters in my dreams and trying to figure out what would happen next. I even wanted Edward to bite me! Anyway, try it and let me know what you think! Twilight the movie opens November 21 and I can't wait! I hope it doesn't disappoint me.

Gatlinburg Trip

No, we didn't elope! That seemed to be everyone's question! We just had a nice, relaxing, romantic trip! No more exclamation marks for a while. We left at 6:30 Saturday morning and I slumbered until about 9:30! I was so tired from the game the night before (which was in Demopolis). Then I read my Twilight book (which you HAVE to read). And Troy continued to drive!

When we finally got there we went to our adorable cabin and unpacked, walked around outside and then drove on in to Gatlinburg. We went in a bunch of cute little shops and I don't know why I didn't even buy anything. But I should have. Then we went in a little coffee shop and I got some yummy Mocha Latte and Troy had some awesome apple cider. Downtown Gatlinburg is so cute. We just looked around everywhere.

Then we went back to the cabin and relaxed in the hottub with a glass of wine. It was so nice to be looking out over the mountain in the quiet coziness of our own hottub with nothing around! Then I wanted to get in the cute lil' claw foot tub and read so I did, and did, and did. I'm telling you I couldn't put that book down!

Sunday we drove to Cade's Cove, which is a national park in the Smokies. It's a one-way little road 11 miles long that has old cabins, churches, and lots of wildlife. We saw deer and turkeys but no bears :( We had packed a picnic lunch of pimento & cheese and turkey sammies and ate on top of a gently-rolling hill. hee hee Then we went back to our cabin and grilled steak and sweet potatoes and got in the hottub some more and then we snuggled!

It was a wonderful trip and we didn't do a whole lot but relax which is what we both wanted! Oh yea, and I got up every morning and cooked an awesome breakfast complete with bacon, eggs, grits, and blueberry/strawberry muffins and we drank coffee outside on the deck. Sorry, Casey. I only included one link.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Going to Gatlinburg!

We're going to Gatlinburg next weekend for a little getaway! I can't wait! We're going during the peak season when all the leaves are changing colors and falling off of the trees. We are pretty much just going to hang out at the cabin and relax in the hot tub and wake up drinking coffee in the rockers on the backporch that overlook the Smokies! We may go hiking at Alum Cave Bluff (yes, I can even insert a link!) Sunday and take a cute little picnic lunch. I got a GREAT deal on a beautiful cabin near Pigeon Forge. We are leaving early Saturday morning since I have a game Friday night and we're coming home Monday afternoon. W.O. Parmer will just have to do without me for one day.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Troy's Dove Shoot

Troy is a hunter. Turkeys, dove, deer, rabbits, elk, moose, dogs, cats--EVERYTHING! So he's having a dove shoot right now behind his house. He and Tristen (his son) and a few friends are sitting together in the hot sun waiting on the poor birdies to fly over so they can kill them. Then Buck goes and retrieves them and they have to clean them. I actually ate some of those "dove's breats" and they had bullet holes all in them. Not my cup of tea. Neither is hunting. But they enjoy it so I will deal with it! They only thing I like about it is that I'm going to hang Santa hats on the mounted deer at Christmas and they'll look so cute like Rudolph!

Blogging Late Bloomer

Well now I've got a blog too. I've just loved reading Casey's blog novels and seeing Sophie updates on Jill's blog, so I decided to make one too. Only, there's really not a lot going on to talk about! No babies or hubby yet to talk about, but I do have an amazing boyfriend, Troy, I co-sponsor the cheerleaders and teach second grade, so those will probably be my only topics!

Whoever thinks that teachers have it made have no idea what they are talking about. School this year has kept me exceedingly busy. We have a whole new reading program, Reading Street, and I spend just about all my free time preparing for it. The only way we've been able to make it through each day's lessons are by making PowerPoints where we basically put the whole Teacher's Edition on the show. I did last week's story and worked on it for approximately seven hours (and I'm pretty ppt saavy). In addition to a new reading program, we are also implementing AMSTI into our science and math. We had to go to AMSTI training (Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Institute?) this summer for two exciting weeks, let me tell you. I feel like I spend every waking minute working on school stuff. And I have to to be the best teacher that I can. There is just NO WAY someone could just roll in around 7:30 and leave by 3:30 and have their kids learn anything. If you have children, let their teachers know how much you appreciate them! Most of Alabama has the same new stuff we have and everyone is overwhelmed! I've had to spend several Saturdays at school preparing since August. But I love teaching and can't imagine doing anything else. Second graders are so loving (well, most are) and they just love to hug you and call you "mama!" They are at the age where they like learning and pleasing.

I sponsor a little Pep Squad at school and we practice every Wednesday after school. The club is made up of kindergarten, first and second graders who want to cheer! They are so cute! Those little kindergarteners don't hardly know a thing, though! They just jump around and yell! I've taught them about 10 cheers and we practice jumps and motions. They love to do "Little Sally Walker" and dance. I let them cheer before the high school games, pregame and get in the Spirit Line. Since I'm also co-sponsoring the Varsity cheerleaders, it works out well! The Pep Squad also marched in our homecoming parade and did a fabulous job!