Monday, July 28, 2008

We love you Baskin Robbins!

After going to the Galleria (but before the Astros game) we made a stop at Half Price Books. Guess what store was located just down from it??
We stopped for an afternoon snack that we all enjoyed. Meagan ate chocolate chip ice cream and Garrett had chocolate obviously! He loves his ice cream in a cone and she is a cup/spoon girl. I enjoyed Nutty Coconut, which is impossible to find anywhere but Baskin Robbins and Jimmy had, ummm. . ., I don't remember because they were out of his favorite sherbert.
Jimmy and I love the waffle cones that they make in the store. Everytime I have one I am reminded of when I was a kid eating frozen yougurt at Jerry Smith's in Alice. Boy, I miss that place!
There is no Baskin Robbins in Alice any more so we try to stop at the one in Corpus every now and then, or like this, when we are in another town.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

And the winner is . . . .

Chraycee from Walking on Sunshine . . . and Cheerios!

I'll be e-mailing you about getting your package to you.

Thank you to everyone who entered my contest. I have been to all of your blogs and love to see how different each one is.

Thank you to all of you who gave me tips about putting my pictures in the blog too. I am finally able to move my pictures around! Yea!

Ice Skating and Astros Game

On Tuesday morning we went to the Galleria and went ice skating. It was not as hard as I thought that it would be. Of course, little kids were out on the ice swooping around making it look like the easiest thing in the world! Meagan and Garrett hung out in one corner of the rink mostly. I ventured down the side of the rink - but not too far! I would like to have tried to make it all the way around the rink but my feet were killing me! I don't know if my boots were the wrong size or if my feet just cramped up from them trying to hang on and stay upright. I am proud to say that I did not fall. Yea me!
On Tuesday evening we went to a Houston Astros game. Garrett, Meagan, and I spent most of the game in the kid zone, play place thing. We did get to see Elaine and Molly at the game briefly. Sadly, the Astros lost 8 to 2.

Downtown Aquarium

On Wednesday we went to the Downtown Aquarium. It was raining when we arrived, and continued to rain on and off during our visit. The aquarium is really neat. It is divided into several sections and has an area where the kids had the opportunity to touch rays, hermit crabs, and horseshoe crabs. I say opportunity because neither kiddo was that keen on touching real life animals!

Outside of the aquarium there were several rides for the kids to go on. The picture at the top of the post is on the train ride. The train went around the aquarium and stopped in the shark exhibit. Sharks are all around you. Very cool.
After hanging out at the aquarium, we walked to the Hard Rock Cafe and had lunch. Jimmy and I enjoyed it but the kids were too young to appreciate the memorabilia all around the restaurant.
We went back to the hotel afterwards and hung out in our room. It was pouring thanks to Dolly! Debbie and Jennie stopped by and visited with us for a while. We went to dinner and Jimmy and I tried fried pickles for the first time. We both decided that we would rather have our pickles plain! It was interesting to try something that we had heard so much about.

Friday, July 18, 2008

******Announcing****** Teacher Mom's Pay It Forward Contest

So, I read Swistle daily (another blog for those of you who are new to this) and a while back she decided to have a pay it forward contest, and not just a regular pay it forward contest. (You can read about it on her blog here) I entered a bunch of contests she had linked on her page hoping to win one, and well, I didn't. So, I decided to host a contest of my own.

If you are new to the Pay It Forward idea let me explain:

I am having a contest. To enter the contest you simply need to leave a comment on this entry. On July 27th, I will use a random number generator (one of my kids probably!) and pick a winner. When I send the winner his/her package that person will then hold a Pay It Forward Contest on their blog. (If you do not have a blog, don't worry. I will host your contest on my blog for you.) Each winner will then send a prize to a new winner, hence the name of the contest!

If I have totally confused you, see Swistle's blog where I linked it. She explains it much better than I can!

Now for the good part: the prize you can win! It is pictured at the top of this entry because I STILL HAVE NOT figured out how to insert my pictures in the body of my blog posts.
This is what I will send to you if you win the contest - A smorgasbord of scrap booking products including two packs of idea pages, several idea sheets, three pages of letters, a title idea book, an alphabet stencil, a pack of wintry paper (to help you think cool this summer!), a mini tape runner, a corner rounder, a mini picture sorter, 6 pens, and tons of mini packs of paper and stickers (these are enough to complete 1 -2 pages in a scrapbook).
If you were wondering, yes, I was a Creative Memories consultant once upon a time. I still love to scrapbook and still use their products, I just no longer have the time to teach full time, be a mom and wife, and run a scrapbook business.

I think everyone should scrapbook in some way to help them preserve their memories and I hope that my prize helps someone get started with that, kick starts someone who used to scrapbook, or helps keep an existing scrap booker going.

So if you would like to enter my Pay It Forward contest simply leave me a comment on this post. I would like you to answer this question: Why do you blog/read blogs? What makes you come back to a blog to read it daily/weekly?

Remember, I'll pick a winner on July 27th. Make sure and leave a link to your blog or your e-mail address so I can contact the winner.

Thanks for playing!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Random Thought

If a black cat crossing your path brings bad luck, does a white cat crossing your path bring good luck?

Inquiring minds want to know. (Stolen from the Enquirer of course)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

More funnies by Garrett

Today Garrett was upset about not getting to go to Grandma's house with Meagan. (More about what she was doing there later.) So, to get him to calm down, I told him I had a surprise for him at home. And, the cool thing is, I actually did have a surprise for him!

I pick up random things and store them away for moments like these.

Anyway, the surprise was a new pack of water paints. Garrett wanted to know what they were. I told him they were paints and that I would be right back. I walked into the kitchen to get a small bowl of water and a paper towel for him. As I was coming back to the dining room he calls, "Hey Mom! How do you get these paints to wake up?" I thought it was hilarious! I explained to him that you had to dab them with water to get them to "wake up."

He then went on to tell me that he didn't need the white woken up because he only had white paper to paint on and you wouldn't be able to see it anyway. I thought that this was pretty smart thinking for a five year old!

That is his masterpiece at the top of the entry!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Weekend Ramblings - Ron White

On Friday night we went to see Ron White. He was really funny and 95% of his show was brand new. He even made a couple of mistakes in telling his jokes but rolled with them and made them funny too! He meant to say Pacific Ocean and said Specific Ocean, USO tour and said UFO tour, and some other joke where the punch line didn't work out. He then used the (non)punch line several more times and made it funny!

I was amazed about how rude people were about getting up during the show. Maybe it's the teacher in me, but come on, the show was only about an hour and a half. If you can't sit still that long, why are you there? Jimmy pointed out to me that their beer/alcohol consumption probably had something to do with them getting up so frequently.

The funniest part of the show was about half way through. Three people went down the aisle to go to their seats (which were in the FRONT row.) Ron spotted them and said, "Can we get you anything? Like maybe a watch??" Okay, so it doesn't sound so funny here but trust me, it was funny during the show.

I would love to see the whole Blue Collar Comedy Club (Jeff Foxworthy, Bill Engvall, Larry the Cableguy, and Ron White) together. I know that that would be a really good show.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Check out the new background!

I am always amazed at what you are able to find on the internet! I found a site that allows you to add a background to your blog for free. If you would like to do the same, click on the link at the top, left hand corner of my blog. They have tons to choose from!

They also have free blinkees. You can see mine on the right of my blog, above my flickr badge. It says Sit Long Read Much. Which, if you know me at all, is my FAVORITE thing to do.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Random Thoughts

I added a new post on the movie Wall*E. Well the post contains a few of my thoughts and a review by Roger Ebert. I had started the post a few days ago so it posted in chronological order. You can find it in the archives under Wall*E.

We played Jenga last night as a family. Garrett and Meagan actually did very well. Meagan is really getting the concept of finding a piece that is willing to move. (If you have never played Jenga before - as you touch each piece some of them "give" and some of them don't. You only want to move the ones that "give" because you have a better chance of not knocking down the whole tower.) I really like that Garrett is getting old enough now that we can play games together as a family.

Jimmy and I are going to see Ron White tonight. I can't wait. Jimmy and I love to watch his comedy routine on T.V. We are going to go to dinner and then go to the show. Yea! A night out without kids!

We have plans for the whole family tomorrow but shh. . . don't tell the kids. We are going to drive to Aransas Pass. They have a really cool pool with slides. It looks like a whole lot of fun. I'll post pictures as soon as I can.

Yesterday I spent an hour printing out directions for vacation. With what I spent on paper and ink I probably could have bought one of those GPS things for the car. I am very excited about the hotel that Jimmy and I chose. It is very close to all of the things that we are going to do in Houston.

I also added some new music to the blog. I found some David Cook songs that I love. I was so excited that he won American Idol. I heard him on the radio for the first time yesterday. I can't wait for his CD to come out.

I told you this post was going to be full of random thoughts!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Vacation Plans

We have a vacation coming up soon. We will be going to Houston, Texas.

While in Houston we plan to:

attend an Astros game

go to the Galleria to ice skate

to the Downtown Aquarium

go to the Children's Museum

We are also staying near Herman Park which has lots of neat things to do. Our hotel has a pool, which the kids are thrilled about.

They are taking swimming lessons this week and next week (Thanks Grandpa!) and LOVE them. They can't wait to go on vacation and show off all of their new skills.

I will post pictures when we return!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Fun at Fun Trackers

We went to Fun Trackers and well . . . had fun! The whole family enjoyed all of the activities offered. I know it is a place that we will go back to. See the next several posts about the things we did because I am still new to this blog thing and can only get one picture to post on each blog. You can also click on my flickr badge on the left of the screen to see more of the pictures that I took that day. (I'm also new to flickr. It's really neat!) If you live in the Corpus Christi area I highly recommend Fun Trackers!

Soaked after the bumper boats

Soaked after the bumper boats
Originally uploaded by edbteach

The sign posted above the ride says DO NOT RIDE IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO GET WET and whoo boy were they right! We were soaked!!

Ready to Race

Ready to Race
Originally uploaded by edbteach

Garrett was bummed that Dad and Meagan beat us on the Family Track. "Mom, we should have gotten a fast go kart like Meagan and Dad!"

He didn't realize that it was Mom that was slow, not the go kart!

Ready to Race

Ready to Race
Originally uploaded by edbteach

She really enjoyed driving the go karts.

Fun Trackers

The family by the waterfall, originally uploaded by edbteach.

A couple of weeks ago Jimmy and I took the kids to Fun Trackers. Fun Trackers is in Flour Bluff and is a family amusement center. We rode on bumper boats (and got toally soaked), played miniature golf, rode on various go karts and played in the arcade.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Oh my God! I am totally turning into my Dad!

I just told Garrett, "If you are going to cry, I will give you something to cry about."

Other words (that belong to my father) recently out of my mouth:
"Where did you get your driver's license?? A Cracker Jacks box??? (said to a person who pulled out in front of me and then proceeded to drive 15 miles an hour - fifteen.)

I guess I'm okay unless I utter his favorite phrase of all time:

"I'm as serious as a heart attack."

Summer Fun

By fun I really mean children aggravating you to no end of course.

It is very difficult to be a teacher. The ten months of the year when you are teaching are emotionally draining and physically demanding. (Stop laughing at me! Until you have walked a mile in my shoes, don't judge me. I challenge each one of you to go to a school and observe, or better yet, volunteer and get a glimpse of what it is teachers do on a daily basis. And I say glimpse because what you actually see me do is just a small part of what I actually do.) And then to go from working constantly (because teaching is NOT an 8:00 - 4:00 job) to not working at all and being home 24 hours a day, seven days a week . . . well the transition isn't always so easy. Add to that two kids who are used to being in school with a scheduled day who are now at loose ends . . . it can be frustrating. I just want to be ALONE and they want to be played with! Imagine that - they want some of my time and attention. (Said sarcastically okay??)

Whoo boy . . . I sound a little . . . bitter about teaching. In truth, there is nothing else I can imagine myself doing. I really mean it.

I just had a wonderful year with great students who I really enjoyed working with. I work with great teachers - E and V I couldn't have done it without you - and a great staff and principal. I know that I make a difference in childrens' lives and that is why I do what I do. I just get a little tired every now and then!

I also love being a mom. I just wish that there was a week where the kids were in school and I had the week off.

So, what's a mom to do? Well I try to keep some sort of schedule for the kids and me. I try to find things for them to do (VBS, swimming lessons, etc) We go do simple things like go for ice cream and to the local library. That still leaves a lot of time where they need to occupy themselves. Don't get me wrong. I know a little boredom is good for kids. They need to know what to do with themselves. I just wish it was easier sometimes.

What do you do to juggle it all??

Sunday, July 6, 2008


To set the scene:

Garrett and Meagan were in the dining room and Jimmy and I were in the living room.

Meagan: "Garrett, you bit me!"

Garrett: "No, I scratched you with my teeth."

This kid never ceases to amaze me! (See my previous post about Garrett's funny sayings here.)

Saturday, July 5, 2008


I took Meagan, Garrett, and one of Meagan's friends to see WALL * E today. The kids really enjoyed it. However, I don't think they really "got" the movie. I believe it is a commentary on how humans do not take care of the Earth and are inherently lazy. Hmmm. . . was someone making a political statement through a kid's movie? I think so.

Here's a review by Roger Ebert.


June 26, 2008

Cast & CreditsWith the voices of:Wall-E: Ben BurttEve: Elissa KnightShelby: Fred WillardCaptain: Jeff GarlinJohn: John RatzenbergerMary: Kathy NajimyComputer: Sigourney WeaverHoverchair mom: Kim KopfHoverchair son: Garrett PalmerWalt Disney/Pixar presents a film directed by Andrew Stanton. Written by Stanton and Jim Reardon. Running time: 97 minutes. Rated G.

By Roger Ebert

Pixar’s “WALL•E” succeeds at being three things at once: an enthralling animated film, a visual wonderment and a decent science-fiction story. After “Kung Fu Panda,” I thought I had just about exhausted my emergency supply of childlike credulity, but here is a film, like “Finding Nemo,” that you can enjoy even if you’ve grown up. That it works largely without spoken dialogue is all the more astonishing; it can easily cross language barriers, which is all the better, considering that it tells a planetary story.

It is 700 years in the future. A city of skyscrapers rises up from the land. A closer view reveals that the skyscrapers are all constructed out of garbage, neatly compacted into squares or bales and piled on top of one another. In all the land, only one creature stirs. This is WALL•E, the last of the functioning solar-powered robots. He — the story leaves no doubt about gender — scoops up trash, shovels it into his belly, compresses it into a square and climbs on his tractor treads and heads up a winding road to the top of his latest skyscraper, to place it neatly on the pile.
It is lonely being WALL•E. But does WALL•E even know that? He comes home at night to a big storage area, where he has gathered a few treasures from his scavengings of the garbage and festooned them with Christmas lights. He wheels into his rest position, takes off his treads from his tired wheels and goes into sleep mode. Tomorrow is another day: One of thousands since the last humans left the Earth and settled into orbit aboard gigantic spaceships that resemble spas for the fat and lazy.

One day WALL•E’s age-old routine is shattered. Something new appears in his world, which otherwise has consisted only of old things left behind. This is, to our eye, a sleek spaceship. To WALL•E’s eyes, who knows? What with one thing and another, WALL•E is scooped up by the ship and returned to the orbiting spaceship Axiom, along with his most recent precious discovery: a tiny, perfect green plant, which he found growing in the rubble and transplanted to an old shoe.

Have you heard enough to be intrigued, or do you want more? Speaking voices are now heard for the first time in the movie, although all on his own, WALL•E has a vocabulary (or repertory?) of squeaks, rattles and electronic purrs, and a couple of pivoting eyes that make him look downright anthropomorphic. We meet a Hoverchair family, so known because aboard ship they get around in comfy chairs that hover over surfaces and whisk them about effortlessly. They’re all as fat as Susie’s aunt.

This is not entirely their fault, since generations in the low-gravity world aboard the Axiom have evolved humanity into a race whose members resemble those folks you see whizzing around Wal-Mart in their electric shopping carts.

There is now a plot involving WALL•E, the ship’s captain, several Hover people and the fate of the green living thing. And in a development that would have made Sir Arthur Clarke’s heart beat with joy, humanity returns home once again — or is that a spoiler?

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th of July!

Well, the picture isn't as large as I thought it was going to be but this is my first attempt at using a picture off of the web. Anyway, I hope everyone has a great day! We don't have much planned. I wanted to go to the fireworks show that our town does, but the fireworks have been canceled due to the drought and burn ban that is over our county.

I plan on cleaning house (the laundry pile has multiplied overnight again on me!) and organizing my scrapbook materials. We'll see how much of that actually gets done!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Key Lime Cake

I mentioned Key Lime Cake in a previous post so I thought I would post the recipie. I found it at which is one of my favorite teaching websites to hang out on. I will post a picture of the cake next time I bake one.

Key Lime Cake

¾ cup oil
¾ cup orange juice
5 eggs
1 3 oz. package lime flavored Jell-o
1 box lemon cake mix
¼ cup lime juice
5 tablespoons powdered sugar

1 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 lb. box powdered sugar

Combine the oil, orange juice, eggs, Jell-O, and cake mix. Beat until smooth. Pour into a 9 x 13 pan that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake at 325 degrees for 35 - 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center of cake comes out clean.

While cake is baking combine ¼ cup lime juice and 5 tablespoons in a small bowl. Stir until smooth.

When cake is finished, prick top of cake all over with a fork. Drizzle lime juice/powdered sugar mixture over the top of the entire cake. Let the cake cool while the frosting is being made.

To make frosting: beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add vanilla extract and then beat in entire box of powdered sugar until smooth. Spread over cooled cake.


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Yes, yes indeed

That was Garrett's reply when I asked him if he would like to go walking with me. I go to a nearby elementary school to walk and he enjoys playing on the playground while I walk.

Last night I walked 6 laps (1 1/2 miles) and he played in the rocks and ran around. I walk with my mother-in-law, Juanita. Thank goodness for mother-in-laws who call to see if you want to go walking even when you turned them down everytime they called last week. Thanks Juanita!

So, tonight I decided I would call her. She said yes and I went to put on my shoes. Unfortunately, before I even got a single shoe on she called back to let me know that it was raining. She lives near the elementary school. Darn. And I really mean it. I would really like to get started on a consistent trend of walking in the evenings.

Now, don't get me wrong, I am grateful for the rain. The weatherman said we were in a severe drought. I watered the yard all weekend long and it could still have used more (I guess that's what happens when you neglect it for a while. Hmmm . . . ) but couldn't it have rained after we walked? Actually, my landlord does a really good job watering our yard for us. Thanks Mr. P!

Tomorrow I will be doing plenty of walking. But, not the kind of walking I enjoy. I will be walking in slow, slow circles trying not to make any noise. I am administering the TAKS test tomorrow and this slow, noiseless walking is called "Active monitoring." This is what I must do to make sure that my kids are not doing any thing that they are not supposed to.

For those of you out of the educational loop (or TEXAS educational loop I should say) the TAKS test is the high stakes test that third grade students take in Texas. They take it in two areas, math and reading. It is referred to as "high stakes" because if a child does not pass the reading portion of the test they may be held back in third grade.

Anyway, I have been teaching summer school since the day after regular school let out and tomorrow my kids will test. Our last day of summer school is on Thursday. At 1:00 I will be free to stay up late, sleep late (yeah right - with two kids who consistently get up by 8:00 EVERYDAY!) and generally have the freedom to do what I want, when I want.