Friday, September 30, 2011


I have unnatural addiction to Ke$ha's "Tik Tok" song.  I know what you're thinking: She's such a trashy pop chart bottom feeder. Why would a religious gal like you want to listen to such filth?

I've listened to it every day, multiple times, for a week straight. "There's something wrong with you," I thought to myself while singing along, "Before I leave brush my teeth with a bottle of Jack."  I even bumped my base while doing tonight's drive-by visiting teaching.

Do you see the above posted picture?  Well, I'm not in it.  That's because this is my fourth month in a row doing a drive-by.  Let me define: cookies on a plate+note+ding-dong ditch+9:30 p.m. on the last night of the month=me.

The first line of this month's note went,

Dear Jenny,

I've reached a new visiting teaching low.  Sorry I have not been by this month (again), but I want to tell you how much I love you and your boys...

The church is still true and so is visiting teaching. (This last part was not in the note.)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Iambic Pentameter and Bad Words

I thought this video would be an engaging intro to iambic pentameter.  It's so clever, really, and high schoolers, even the smart ones, get bored so easily.  They're so used to jumping from one information source to another.  They like their information to be quick and fast-paced, and they don't want to spend a bunch of time processing it.  That's what computers are for, not their brains.  All the information they need is just a click away, so why write it down or even memorize it?

New story:

Yesterday on the kindergarten playground, Alisia's and my conversation went like this:

"Ms. S., Ethan is saying bad words."
"What kind of words is he saying, Alisia?" I asked.
"Well he-he, well when he jumped off the swing he said, 'Oh my Bob!'" (Insert Lord's name in vain here.)
"I have to tell you that in some homes that's not a bad word.  I can tell in your home it is, so you can politely ask him not say that word around you."

Alisia, not satisfied with my disciplining measures, went on.

"He said a lot more bad words, Ms. S."
And before I could even stop her, "Moms don't let their kids say, 'Oh, spit!'" (You know what word to insert here.)

I covered my mouth to keep from giggling.  It's not often I hear a bright-eyed, pony tailed five-year-old girls spout out some real swear words.

"Alisia, I will talk to Ethan, but you just said all the bad words, too."

"Oops!" she said, covering her mouth.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Listening and Thinking

I'm eating a chicken salad sandwich while I'm listening and sweeping and scrubbing.  Do you listen to this channel or what?  Mrs. Virginia Pearce's stories have been making me tear-up and smile all afternoon, so now I may have to send her a BFF charm in the mail.  Don't get jealous, Babs.

I'm sprucing up this place for when my homies get home.  My house smells like bleach mixed with my favorite candle's scent. It's what makes my homies say, "We love when we come home to a clean house."  After I'm done sprucing I'm going to make salsa.  Then I can greet Mi Amor with my dragon breath when he gets home.

P.S.  I may have too many eggs.  Someone needs to write a list before she goes to the store...

P.P.S.  My homgurl just pointed out that one of the egg carton's expiration date was in April of 2010.  I guess this picture is old, but I thought I took it recently because I still have a four-stack of half empty egg cartons shoved in my fridge.  Also, the Claussen pickles are still there.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mathematical Heir

Have I told you my overall high school math GPA was a D, a 1.0? I tell you this because I chose my college major based on prerequisites that required little or no math skill.  I did fine in my college math classes, but an English major only had to take Pre-Algebra, which didn't require use of a TI30 calculator and was really a review of what I didn't understand in high school.

Each night, this English major and her homgurl park their derrieres at the kitchen table and have a math par-tay. Our nightly "incapable leading the blind" math celebrations are mixed with lots of Diet Dr. Peppers and episodes of tear-jerking frustration (me) and endless teeth gnashing (my homegurl).

(Not to brag, but OUR overall homework score is a 94.4%, FYI, so don't put this gal out to pasture yet.)

But our nightly math parties are doing the two of us a disservice, so that's why we're signing up here, together.

Now we'll park our derrieres at Larry's table, and just maybe we can conclude our "par-tays" tear-free. Right, Larry?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Ballet Girl

Here's my homegurl during her audition.  Her severity is inspiring.

P.S.  My homegurl just told me her posture is horrible in this picture, and I shouldn't feel anything close to being inspired. What do I know?

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Upchuck Bus

Last year's bus driver was mean.  My homies would come home everyday with stories about how he'd yell, and when he'd yell, a grey-white foam would collect in the corners of his mouth, and they said they'd stare at his teeth hanging from his gums like butter sticks.

"He doesn't brush his teeth, Mom.  And, he hates kids."
"He doesn't hate you, right?  You two behave, right?" I'd say.
"Oh, yes!" They'd say in unison.

I continued making them ride the bus until one day they came home and told me how the bus driver intentionally slammed on the breaks and made a bunch of the naughty kids fall from their seats onto the black, rubber floor.  I called the district office and complained.  Then I told my homies they didn't have to ride the bus anymore.

But now I miss how convenient the bus makes my life, so I'm making them try it again this year.  After all, I rode the bus, and in exchange I received an invaluable education.  I learned how to say bad words, had my first crush, and got a bus ticket for yelling "Bald Eagle!" out the window to a bald cyclist.  The whole experience put hair on my chest and made me a stronger woman, so on the bus my homies go.

But on yesterday's bus ride things got a little too hairy.  My homies said,

"Guess what?"
"We were really late for school."
"What happened?  Did the bus breakdown?" I asked.
"No!" Jacob P. puked his brains out and it stunk up the whole bus.  It smelled like goat cheese, so we rolled down the widows.  Only, the hot air blowing in from the outside made the bus smell even worse."
"What did the bus driver do?"  I asked.
"Well she parked in front of the church and cleaned him up.  Everyone started chanting, 'No school! No school! No school!'"
"So, now you don't want to ride the bus anymore, huh?"  I said.

"No.  We still do.  Tomorrow Zack is bringing his lizard, and he said we could pet him for a quarter."

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Clique

When my homegurl climbs into the car after school, our conversations go like this:

"Who did you hang out with today?"
"Um...Bailey, Elle, and all those girls."
"Any boys?  Like, did you kiss a boy and like it?" I teasingly ask.
"Ewww, Mom! I'm not like that.  Besides,  I don't even have a crush on ANYONE."
"Guess what, Mom?
"Maddie quit the B.D.C..."
"What?"  I say in complete horror.

If you're not already aware, the B.D.C is short for the Barbie Doll Crew, a self-titled group of girlfriends who attend Hannah's school.  Their clothes are cute; they're selectively nice to others; and they're totally exclusive.  Our conversation continues.

"Why did Maddie quit?"  I ask.
"She just wants to do her own thing; she gets tired of people easily.  You know, too much drama."
"Do you wish you could hang with the B.D.C?  Looks like there's an opening"  I say.
"No way.  We'd have nothing in common."
"What does that mean?"
"They're not like me, Mom."
"What does that mean, Hannah?"
"I don't know, Mom.  I'm done talking about this.
"Where's my Paradise cookie?  You brought me one, right, Mom?"

I've always been so interested in how peer groups form and what criteria determines whether or not a person will belong.  The "cool group" at my high school called themselves the Brat Pack.  Again, like the B.D.C., it was a group of cute girls who really didn't notice anything or anyone on the outside of their predefined group.  Now that I'm an old lady, I realize there wasn't anything going on in their world that wasn't already going on in my own.  But when I was Hannah's age, I was so curious about those girls, and I would go out of my way to talk to them one-on-one, just to see what their secrets were. Why did swarms of girls aspire to be that "cool?" I really wanted to know.

I hope Hannah bypasses the phase of caring about being a part of a supposedly cool girl clique.  Because, seriously, what. a. waste. of. time.  As I add new friends on facebook, who used to be my old friends, I always find myself telling Bryce, "I wish in high school I would have been less attracted to cool and more attracted to interesting.