Sunday, June 20, 2010

Where Would We Be...

...without our Fathers?

A brief message to my Father. I am so thankful that you got to meet Sydney, and that we have photos of the two of you together. I look forward to being able to tell him stories of our time together so he has an understanding of who you were and what an impact you had on my life. I miss you.

Steve is such an amazing father to Sydney. I hope everyone is lucky enough to have someone they can look up to, someone who will tickle them, someone who will cuddle them, someone who will give up watching whatever sporting event is big at the moment to rock them to sleep with a boppie and a bottle.

Happy Father's Day, Steve. And Happy Father's Day to Steve, Steve's Father!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Ready to Run

The first few days of my summer vacay had not started out the way I imagined. By Thursday of this week, I was getting downright tetchy (never heard of it? Read Romeo and Juliet) about what I had planned/expected to accomplish the first week of the summer.

Steve had the day off from work. We started the day with our bi-annual doughnut run. We split a dozen doughnuts on Steve's birthday and on New Year's. It's the little traditions that help make the family memories...isn't it? Anyway, each time, we rotate which place we will visit, sometimes breaking the cycle to try a new venue, but always splitting the dozen... We'll probably change the method by which we conduct this tradition as Sydney gets older...

After, Steve ran a few errands, then we spent the day as a family. After Sydney went to sleep, I was determined to finally finally FINALLY get to the gym. I did, and it was heaven. I missed my old friend. I haven't seen the inside of the gym since last year, and that was before I even started to show - first trimester wore me out. I didn't suffer from morning sickness, but holy cow, I could sleep for 15 hours and still sleep some more. By the time the constant, irrepressible exhaustion went away, I was in track season and had no time (or excess energy) to get to the gym. Then, with the summer, came my third trimester and the heat, so I just chilled, or swam (exercised) in our neighbor's pool (yes, with their permission...). Once Sydney came, well, read my previous posts. Balance was hard to come by.

So needless to say, Thursday was a very welcome opportunity to break free and work out. Friday came, and I did the same thing. As soon as Sydney was down for the night, I jacked up the volume on the baby monitor so Steve could hear and headed for the gym. Both days felt so nice. Today, I was sore. It usually takes a few days for the lactic acid to really build up and to feel sore. I didn't want to go today. But I did. And I feel much better. Usually, it takes 3 days for me to get over the "don't wanna!" hump. We'll see, though I'll probably take tomorrow off from the actual gym since it is Father's Day. Monday, though, I plan to get back on schedule and continue losing baby weight. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

At Long Last...

My apologies for being so remiss in posting pics of Sydney.

Daddy was going to play golf this morning. Unbeknownst to us both, we dressed Daddy and Syd alike!

Isn't he an angel when he's asleep?

A beautiful Sunday morning, early - approximately 6:30 or so. We were both in our pj's still!

This is how he crawls...with his right leg up and foot flat on the floor, but left leg bent and on his knee...

First morning after Mommy is home for the summer. See the right leg, again?!

And this is the first time he pulled himself up, all by himself. It would be on the gate. Thank goodness that thing is bolted to the wall...

This is his newest expression for whenever he's unsure or upset about something.

And last, Happy Birthday, Daddy! This was right before cake...

Monday, June 14, 2010

One Last Bit of School News

So sorry to revert back to school news...I know, I know...I'm supposed to be uploading my most recent pics of Sydney. It's been ages. Forgive me.

I simply couldn't resist adding this story of my ghost in the trailer. I think all I had to do was lug out my fridge, two Globe theaters students made for extra credit, and a few odds and ends. Everything else was packed, moved, or tossed. I took one last look around, and locked my door on Thursday afternoon. Exams were done. Grades were posted. I was finished except for a few minor things...

Friday morning rolls around. I walk up to my trailer. No, I don't have much in there, but I still have keys, and it still has a/c, so you bet I was going to park my stuff in there until I truly was finished for the summer. I enter, go to my desk to put everything down, and realize that my bookcase at the back of the room has been moved 1 foot away from the wall. Nothing else was touched, and almost everything else is gone. I go closer to look, thinking perhaps the janitor decided to vacuum, which is pointless since the trailer will no longer be at Byrd (so they tell us) at the beginning of the new school year. Nope. Classroom crumblies still on the ground around it.

Rafe comes in his side of the trailer about 15 minutes later. I ask him if, for some strange reason, he moved my bookcase. He says he was going to ask me why I moved it. Obviously, that's a 'no.'

The only thing I can think of, and it doesn't hold much water, is that the vibrations from the construction caused it to shift, now that it is empty. But nothing else in the trailer has shifted, so that makes no sense whatsoever. The janitor wouldn't have moved it just because. Rafe said it must be "My" ghost that did it.

I wonder if this is the ghost we used to have at home, since I haven't seen much action here lately? Did it follow me to school one day? I wonder if it will be there next year when I am (supposedly) inside the building instead of in a trailer?

Either way, whatever the entity is, it is by no means malignant. So, we'll see...stay tuned in 2 months and I'll let you know! :-)

And one last bit of news: Happy Birthday, honey! I love you!! :-)

Friday, June 11, 2010

I Will Survive

And we're finally done! Today is a work day (a.k.a. - make sure everything is cleaned out so the construction workers can do their thing this summer-day). Tomorrow is graduation. I am so happy and excited, but at the same time, unsettled. I've never had seniors before. Saying goodbye to them gave a whole new meaning to me because I know they won't be just showing up randomly next year to say hi - all are going to college; some more locally than others, but they've got their lives on track. I am happy and excited for them. I remember, fondly, my preparations for college and my first year. This is a whole new book for them to open and write in. But I will miss them terribly. We had a lot of fun in 12 AP.

I also have absolutely no idea what I'm teaching next year, other than 12 AP. I don't know how many preps I'll have. I don't know where I'll be. For the first time EVER, I don't think I'll be doing a whole lot of prep work over the summer, only because I don't know what to prepare. I will be reviewing my 12 AP, though, since I missed 3 months of it for maternity leave. I also have my conference to go to. But other than that...

A friend of ours who is a trucker for UPS and I chat in the mornings as I drive Sydney to the sitter. He works night shift, so as I'm getting going, he's finishing his run before heading home. We've been trying to 'meet up' on the road for a month, now. We always seem to miss each other. Either I'm running late and he's on time, or I'm ahead of him on the road. Well, today, last day, we were both running late. It worked out perfectly! I got to wave at Rick as he drove by, and later, when I caught up to him on 581 (no, I wasn't speeding. He drives a double-long tractor trailer. Not difficult to catch up...), I rolled down the back window so Sydney could see him. It was pretty cool, and a nice way to start the day. Sydney loved the wind in his face and the familiar smile beaming down on him, too.

I know I haven't posted pics in a while. Bear with me. After we truly complete the school year I will have much more time to delve into technology. I plan on posting videos of Snickerdoodle crawling, too. Next year is going to be so much fun, but in the meantime, I'll enjoy this summer to the last drop.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Circa 1993.

The place: my old high school: AP Biology class

The topic at hand was biorhythms.

Ever since the classes where we calculated our own biorhythms, I've been intrigued by them. Do I believe them? Kind of and not really - rather paradoxical. If I'm feeling REALLY good, or just plain lousy, I'll check my biorhythm. I don't have to calculate my own any more. There are a plethora of websites that will do it for you. I use this one, though this one is pretty cool because it gives numbers instead of ratios.

Last week, on a whim, I looked up where I currently stood on my chart. And then I made the mistake of looking 2, then 3, then 5, then 7 days ahead to where I would be the week of exams. Ouch. That's all I have to say. I was not looking forward to putting forth the mental effort to grade exams with what my bell curves said.

But at the same time, I was determined that no stupid computer program could possibly tell me how I felt and would feel. Now, keep in mind, the biorhythms don't necessarily dictate what will happen (this isn't the same as astrology...). Instead, it is more of an indicator of how you will react to what DOES happen to you, physically, emotionally, and intellectually. And I still was determined not to let a computer tell me how I'd be feeling.

I thought I had beaten the idea. I checked the website on Thursday of last week and saw a steady downturn on my charts, but I had a really great Sunday with Steve and Sydney. So, the charts were wrong, right? Well, I've been in a bit of a funk the last two days. I put on a cheery exterior because, hey, it's the end of the school year and I should be very thankful that I'll have a whole 2 months with Snickerdoodle where we can play, learn Italian, and play some more. But is my funk a result of the subconscious being more powerful than I initially thought? Or is the biorhythm truly accurate?

Check yours out and let me know where you stand. Watch it for a few days, my readers, and, seriously, let me know if you think this is a bunch of poppycock or not...

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Bane that is Technology

It really should be more simple. Especially in the 21st century. All I wanted was to connect my school-issued laptop to our new router so I could more easily complete school tasks...

It started with the purchase of our new router. I asked a sales clerk if there was anything special I needed to know. I am by no means an expert in technology, but I do have a basic understanding of how things work. I am not fearful of trying something new, either. But I do (and did) get very frustrated at times.

Sales clerk said it should be fine. In fact, it was the exact same router she used with her school-issued laptop, except she's a student. 'Nuff said. We bought the router.

Steve was actually more excited to get started on hooking everything up than I was. But I was more distracted with a newly-crawling Sydney, so...

He attempts to follow the directions on how to set up the router. BIG MISTAKE! We succeed in getting short with each other. But then again, both of us were running on fumes at that point and truly needed a good night's sleep. We took a step back, refocused, and attempted, again, to figure the router out. In the process of trying to see where connections needed to be made, I turned off a power-strip that connected to more than I initially realized. We lost our cable connection when the modem was turned off.

I called the cable company, and we had to go through steps to get the cable reconnected. The first phone call didn't work. I called again and this time was connected directly to a representative. She was very helpful and ensured the cable worked, but only the HD channels really came through. And we have more channels that are not HD than are. All the others were incredibly fuzzy. Argh! She said to truly correct the issue, we needed to have someone come to the house to fix whatever went wrong. It would take 4 days to do so.

So, 4 fuzzy days later, the cable man comes to the house. He was very helpful, too, but basically told us that when the phone representative refreshed the cable connection to the house, it connected with a different pixel count than what we initially had, which was fantastic for the HD channels, but completely detrimental to the non-HD channels. I don't really understand all this, but suffice it to say, if we have something we really want to see on a few non-HD channels in particular, we have to manually adjust the pixel thingybopperwhatjamajiggers. Aargh!!

Cable dude also helped Steve (no, not helped...he couldn't touch anything...nonchalantly spoke of the easiest way...) to connect the router to the modem, etc. It was exactly as my friend Rafe said to do it (whom I asked the Monday after all this happened). Well, we figured things were looking up at this point. Too soon. Should have known better since this is, after all, Steve and Dionne, who have the crappiest of luck at times.

Steve is excited that we can finally load the router software on my laptop. I bring it home from school, we load the disc, and...nothing. It tries to connect, says I need the key (guarded wifi), I load the key, it tries to connect, says I need the key, and so on and so forth. I cannot figure out why it keeps cycling. Even Rafe didn't know what to say when I told him. Aaargh!!!

And to add insult to injury, for some confounded reason, our vcr/dvd player isn't connecting to play dvds any longer! Steve and I got cuddled up and ready to watch a good movie last night. The player says it is playing the movie, and the timer moves, but the tv screen will not show the movie. I have absolutely no idea what the cable guy did, but Steve says he admitted he cut a cord somewhere and thought it was a cable cord. We checked all cords to make sure they were plugged in and cannot fathom where something went wrong.

And all because of a little router...

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Irony and Updates

The school year is almost over. I mentioned to my freshmen that I keep a blog and they wanted to know the address, so I wrote it on the board. One delightful child asked what a quandary was. I said what any good teacher would say..."Look it up" and pointed to my stack of dictionaries that are ready to be toted back to the English office for storage over the summer.

Said child tried looking it up but couldn't find it. I thought there must be some mistake. I looked in the dictionary and found the word, but realized for the first time that it is spelled with an 'a' after the 'd.' I never knew that. I have always heard it pronounced 'quandree,' not 'quandaree' and ergo, never thought to look up the spelling. I am an English teacher and I fully admit that I made a mistake, but I am horrified at this, especially since my url still has the incorrect spelling. I was able to fix my title, though, so that is good. If nothing else, I think I'll say it was intended from the beginning (perhaps unconsciously) as a way to examine the conundrums facing us all each day. And perhaps my 3rd block learned a lesson from me...

Snickerdoodle is crawling. It is official, and it started last weekend. He's moving very easily, though still hesitantly. I think that is only because he wants to see everything and can't decide which to go to first. He's pulling himself up when we hold his arms, though not by himself on furniture just yet. I expect that will come very quickly now that he knows he can do it. It's too fast. I was hoping to have my baby boy just a little longer. He'll be walking before the summer is out, definitely. He's not even 9 months yet...

Sydney's also become a regular when it comes to pulling my hair. He does it to hold on, to bring my head in so he can kiss me, to comfort him when he's frightened or's not so bad when I'm "all there," but when I'm exhausted or stressed, it is hard to prevent and usually leads to a headache. Summer is coming, so I figured I'd go drastic. I chopped my hair. I imagined I'd go shorter than I actually did (I was thinking a boy-cut) but instead, I have layers that will probably curl up and eventually drive me crazy. But for now, I like it. It is lighter, cooler, and hopefully easy to style. Regardless, I'll have 2 months to grow it out if I find I don't like it. I'll post pictures as soon as I get some taken.

Last, Steve and I are trying to determine how the summer will unfold. We're planning a trip to DC - he's never really been and we both feel there is much to see while there. My sister would like us to come visit her in Florida. We'd love to, but are not sure we'd be able to do both. I have a conference I have to go to the week of my birthday. In between all that, we simply want to spend time as a family and bask in the glory of the 8-11 month old baby/toddler that is Sydney.

As for now, I have one more week to go before I can thoroughly clean this house (no cleaning ever gets done the last month of school...wonder why...) and set aside my books, plans, etc. for just a little break. I completed a massive amount of grading today and plan on enjoying myself tomorrow. Plenty of time to stress over essays. Dionne out.