Wednesday, September 2, 2015

It's That Time Again!

Almost all the kiddos around here are back in school. I know that other parts of the country started much earlier, but this is actually early for us. It was traditional that schools opened the Wednesday after Labor Day; however, this year, Labor Day is the latest it can be (and landing on my b/day, again.) So, most schools are starting this week instead.

When I taught, we always had our faculty orientation on that Tuesday, and it was a full day of notes. The PTA always prepared a beautiful luncheon, and we were excited to begin the new school year. My classroom had always been finished several weeks prior to that day, but several teachers spent that Tuesday afternoon decorating theirs. During my teacher days, I had seven different principals, and every one of them had different meeting styles. I tried to take all the good parts for when I became a principal. The guy principal we had was the best – he hated meetings as much as we. So, he’d hand out copies of calendars, notes from the superintendent's office, and general rules and regulations. Then he’d ask the teachers about their concerns for the year. Many times those issues involved our drop-off and pick-up procedures. We had an awful time with that. Some teachers discussed petty or trivial matters, but for the most part, it was a good preparation meeting.

When the kids arrived the next day, I introduced them to classroom procedures, assigned tasks at random, and handed out books. I always sent home a parent letter, too.  In it, I’d welcome them and outline expectations for them. The kids went home that day with tons of school forms, and I never gave homework those first few half days – just a reminder to return the forms. My reputation preceded me, and the kids and parents knew I meant business. Teaching was hard work, but I loved it. Now, I sorely miss it.

Being a principal meant that I was the one preparing that meeting. I always had a bagel tray and donuts ready, along with coffee, tea, and water. I prepared multi-pocket folders for the teachers and went over procedures. We broke halfway through and had everything wrapped up by noon. I’d order a hoagie tray and salads with desserts and drinks. After that, the teachers were free. I miss that job, too.

My last  faculty meeting!

I try to stay positive when I reach this point each year. I think about all the free time I have. I wallow in the fact that I can sleep in. I grin because I can read normal books or watch daytime TV. I still miss it, but I no longer obsess over it. It is what it is.


Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Hot and Humid -- The Fifth Heat Wave

Happy September!!

The temps will be in the mid-90s, with a dew point near 70 today. Talk about uncomfortable! Again, I’ll stay inside with the a/c. I was supposed to go to the hairdresser tomorrow, but I’m canceling the appointment. Just a few minutes in this kind of heat, and I wither. It takes days for me to feel right. So, I’ll postpone until the following week. My head is a mass of curls, but she can tame it when I get there!

My boys are coming for dinner tonight. I’ll make steaks on the inside grill, baked potatoes (with a lot of toppings,) Jersey corn, and a salad. It’s quick, it’s easy, and it won’t wear me out. For dessert, I’m thinking about a lemon cream pie – cool and refreshing. It’ll be great having the boys, again. I’ll get to hear about the one son’s vacation to Cape Cod, the other son’s kayaking, and we’ll have a lot of laughs. Of course, it also means that Kasey has to go home.  I’ll miss him being here. 

Did you know that the pope is coming later this month to Philadelphia? I’m only minutes away, but I’ll just watch on TV. The crowds and noise would be too much to handle. Plus, there’s limited transportation available. The news media had a field day, condemning all the security measures, and many people decided to stay away. But there’s a full positive response now, and I think people will come again. It drives me nuts when news people stir up trouble. The last pope I saw in person was when I was in Rome, and I was a teenager then! This visit should be exciting! My son will be there this time since he lives in the city and can walk or ride his bike there.

My grandie loved kindergarten, and he couldn’t wait to go today, running right in! So, it all worked out well. The younger one continues to improve and should be fine when he begins pre-K on the 11th.

Have a great day, and stay cool.



Monday, August 31, 2015

Need a Newer Model

After a nice anniversary dinner at home, I was glad we stayed in. I was more relaxed and at ease. Then we hit Saturday, and I fell apart. I told my husband that I wouldn’t blame him if he traded me in for a newer model! This old one is getting too many dents and dings!

My side eased up from the muscle strain; unfortunately, I twisted wrong – yet again – and the muscles under my rib cage – front and back – started. I felt doomed. It feels like a twisted or sprained ankle – move wrong, and I’m yelping. Back to the ibuprofen!

Then, last week, I got two mosquito bites. I saw it flying around me – no buzz, so it meant it was a stinger!  I tried to swat it, but it bit me above my right elbow. I didn’t scratch it despite the fact that it itched so much. No matter, it festered and got infected. Then the same thing happened on my thumb. It was so nasty. If you’re squeamish, look away, but this is how bad it was – blistered and sore. That’s what happens to me with mosquitoes.

Now, I have an antibiotic cream on it, and it’s well bandaged. In the meantime, back on the ranch…

I slipped on my bottom stair, bent my toe under, and it smashed onto the wood floor. There was blood – a lot.  I can’t get that one bandaged because it keeps falling off – the bandage, not the toe. While tending to that, we saw a little lump on the side of my instep, below where the big toe is. It wasn’t from tripping; rather, it’s a callus from going barefoot and sliding that foot. I’m a total mess! That’s why I told my husband to trade me in – I have too many miles!

On a good note, the littler guy is still recuperating from the tonsillectomy, but it’s taking some time. He’s finally sleeping again but doesn’t want to eat or drink. They’re forcing the fluids, but letting him just nibble when he wants.  Poor little thing – I’m sure his little throat is so sore. His brother had another meltdown last night but went off to kindergarten with smiles. So far, there haven’t been any phone calls from the school! It’s another milestone for him, and I’m praying he does well.

My husband just said he needs to go shopping. Yikes! I hope he didn’t take me seriously!


Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday Fragments

Okay, so I ‘lied,’ again – I am able to write today!

Plans Change: It’s a good thing that I’m pretty flexible because changes happen in minutes around here! My SIL drove my little guy here after the Kindergarten orientation on Wednesday night. When they arrived, little guy was so talkative, telling me all about his teacher, the classroom, the kids, the playground, and his supplies. He was so happy and excited. Then his dad took him to bed, and all hell broke loose. He started with the tears, saying he needed his daddy to stay over with him. I tried in vain to console him, but nothing either of us said was of any good. When my husband came home, he tried, also, but to no avail. Finally, my SIL lay down with him, and the little guy fell asleep. I was nervous that he might awaken and start again, but he went through the night with no further incidents. I just don’t know what’s bringing on these bouts.

The younger one got through the tonsillectomy just fine, and the doctor also inserted new ear tubes. We did a lot of Facetime and it was amazing how well he was. He even ate grilled cheese, crackers, and cake. The doctor said he was well enough to go home last night, and my little guy here decided he would go home, too.  So, my daughter drove up, we packed his things, and off they went. Now, I’m having a quiet morning.

Active: I thought the little guy would be tired yesterday, but he had plenty of energy. After a huge breakfast, he wanted to paint. So, I got his supplies ready, and I let him paint an old candle I had. He kept at it for quite some time, happy as a lark. Then he wanted a snack [pretzels] and TV [Handy Manny.] We went to the den, which I was trying to avoid, so he could watch two videos on the computer. By then, it was lunch time, and he helped me fix it. Afterwards, he built with his blocks, colored, cut, created, and had another snack. The time flew, and my husband arrived, ready for dinner. It was at that point when plans changed, and by 7:30, he was gone! It was a busy, but fun-filled day, and I wasn’t even tired!

Celebrating: Today is our anniversary [won’t say which one – I feel old!] and we’re celebrating quietly. DH wants to go out for dinner, but I prefer staying home where I’ll be comfy. We just exchange cards [I made the one I gave him] and we forego presents – we’re gifts to each other.

Block Party: One of our neighbors stopped by to ask if we’d join in on a Halloween block party. We said yes, and I’ll wait until then to see how I feel. I said I’d make a dessert and have treats for trick-or-treaters. We don’t see enough of the people on our little street, and this will be a nice way to meet and greet.

Books: I haven’t finished The Color of Light, but I’m really enjoying it. The library didn’t get any of my books in this week, so I’m stretching this one out. I always need something to read or I go nuts.

Well, that’s all I have for now. Have a great weekend.



Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Another Crazy Week's End

As I’ve written we’ve been sitting for the two little guys last week and the week before. It’s week number three, and no more concerts; however, we’ll be watching the older one while the younger undergoes a tonsillectomy. We’ve been back and forth trying to coordinate our schedules, but I think we’ve firmed it up. The mom and dad will bring him here tonight, after his kindergarten orientation. We’ll return him on Friday.

My SIL’s hospital schedules are crazy, plus my husband is working extra because the owner has been diagnosed with lung cancer and is undergoing treatment. I can’t drive, so I’m pretty useless, and my daughter will be with the younger one. So, arriving at a suitable solution was no easy task. He may be asleep when they get here tonight, but his bed is all ready. Now, if only he wouldn’t get up so early, everything would be perfect. My husband will be at the store all day tomorrow, but I have plenty of activities to keep him busy. We’ll do loads of crafts, and if I can manage, maybe we’ll bake. I’d love to take him outside, but I don’t trust myself alone. Poppy can do that on Friday. And…we still have Kasey in the mix!

In the meantime, my one son who isn’t on vacay, had planned to come tomorrow for dinner. It’s his girlfriend’s birthday, and I thought we’d celebrate. I would have a quick-and-easy menu – steak on the grill, baked potatoes, corn on the cob, and salad. We could get a cake from the bakery. Unfortunately, she wants to go out to eat, so they won’t be here.

Because of the busyness, I’ll be offline, but I’ll write again on Monday.



Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Miss Practicality, Here!

I think I may feel a little better today. (Or maybe it’s wishful thinking!) Whatever. I did get showered and dressed, and I’m trying to put my mind on other things.

I started a list of furnishings in the house, and what I want to do with them. I don my practical hat and decide whether I’ll be keeping, donating, or tossing each piece. We’ll need furniture when we move, but certainly not the amount we own! I’m figuring my den/office here would do well in a second bedroom. We could buy a sleep sofa for overnight guests. Even so, this room has a lot of furniture, and it’s only about fifteen by fifteen! There’s a big wall unit which houses my desk and computer and has a nice upholstered desk chair. My printer sits on my paper cabinet, and that cabinet may not be a must-have. The wooden file cabinets look like furniture, and they hold a lot. The tall bookshelf may also have to go – the bookshelf/hutch top that sits on two file cabinets may have to suffice. The wing chair is a maybe. The kids’ table/chairs/cabinet have to go. There – I’ve completed a whole room!

I want to keep the living room furniture. It may not all fit, but some pieces are antiques, and I can’t let them go. The same goes for the dining room. I want my table/chairs, and I can store the leaves. Likewise, I need my small silver chest. The liquor cabinet and buffet can go. The hutch is built in, so it stays. The table/chairs/built-in benches in the breakfast room will probably stay in the house – they were made for that room. That hutch is up in the air – it’s a family heirloom, and I’m hoping my kids will want it. All of the family room furniture must go – love seat, chairs, four tables, a tall and one long bookcase. We’ll keep the TV cabinet and TV. That’s four more rooms I’ve finished!

I haven’t begun to inventory the second and third floors, and God help us, the basement! Also, none of this includes the extras – wall hangings, paintings, lamps, bric-a-brac. I just keep reminding myself that this must be done, and it keeps me in a practical frame of mind. Each day I add another room to the list, and by next week, it will be finished. I’m really closeting all my sentimentality; otherwise, I’d never complete the task.

Just call me Madame Practical!!



Monday, August 24, 2015

Weekend Wrap-Up

That title makes it sound as if I’ve had a ton of adventures and am winding down. Not. Even. Close. I’ve done nothing since Friday except rest and relax. If I push too hard, the muscles rebel, and I’m in agony again. So, I decided to just not move too much. I’m not better, but I’m certainly not worse. I promised my husband that if this pain continues, I’ll see the doctor, but I hate the thought of it.

Seriously, what can he do? I know he’ll say that I must rest. I am. I need to take IB or another NSAID. I am. He might suggest pain meds. I won’t take them because 1) they make me woozy, and 2) I don’t want addiction added to my list of woes. He may want x-rays or MRI. That’s too difficult for me right now. So, I’ll continue to do as I have been. I haven’t even gotten dressed after my painful shower. I just wear robes – they’re easier to get into than slacks and a top. Today, I may try Aspercreme, but there’s no research to show this medicine can be helpful. I’ll also try the ice routine, but no heat. I still think time will heal it, but I get impatient.

I also began my research on new places to live. Doing it online isn’t that helpful. I can see floor plans, but I think I need to visit these places in person. I want a place with two bedrooms and two baths, so that’s my starting point. A high rise wouldn’t be good. What if the power went out, and I couldn’t do the steps? Independent retirement communities with continuing care can be quite pricey. I also need a walk-in/roll-in shower. Odd that they’re so rare. So, I’ll continue my search, and then maybe my husband can scope them out before I do. This is getting to be a chore!

I need to move into a more comfortable position, so I won’t stay on here much longer.  Hopefully, I’ll see some improvement by tomorrow.