Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The Best Childhood Toy Ever

Last week I went to an inservice at my school where Dr. Roger Taylor was the presenter. In his presentation he talked about how kids today don't play the way we used to play when we were kids. They don't use their imaginations or any sort of creativity. They sit inside and watch TV or play video games. He then showed a picture of a cardboard box. Oh the memories that came flooding back to all of us that were in the room! This ordinary box was transformed into a speedy car, a drive through restaurant, a dream home, and so many other things.

I remember a certain large box I had as a child that I absolutely loved. I played with it non-stop for weeks. Surely my parents had noticed how much I loved this box. But no! One day without my permission my dad needed a place to put the newborn chicks. And what did he use? My box! It was the best toy I ever lost.

So kids don't need all these fancy toys that light up and make noises. All they need is a box.

And Jen, your pictures on facebook inspired me to write a blog about this. :)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Sugar and Spice or Snails and Puppy Dog Tails?

First of all, this is my first time doing two posts in one day. Wow! I know.

Tomorrow I go to have my ultrasound where I get to find out whether it's a boy or girl. I know there's a chance that I won't even find out, but I am really hoping that the baby cooperates. For years I have said that I don't know what to do with boys, so I would prefer to have mostly girls. But lately I think I've really come around to liking these baby boys. Even though I wouldn't get to put cute bows in their hair or dress them in really cute dresses, I think I would very happy with having a boy. Plus every person I meet tells me how much easier boys are to raise. They don't have the mood swings that girls do, and they are just all around much easier. I wouldn't know since my older and only brother is about 15 years older than me. I grew up with all girls, and that's all I know.

On the other hand I have always wanted a boy. At least for the first child. I think it's the traditional side of me that wants them to take care of their younger siblings and there's whole birthright thing. I also want a boy so Miles can have a son, and he can teach him all about sports and how to be tuff. I would love to be able to go to my son's football games, basketball games, or whatever sporting event he's in.

Basically what I'm trying to say is that for the first time in my life I would love having a boy, and that no matter the result tomorrow I'll be happy!

Belly Rubbing

I knew that when I got pregnant I would be confronted with this issue at least once, if not often. The issue of people touching my belly. There are two types of people that touch bellies - those that ask if they can touch, and those that don't ask and just start touching.

Just this week I have had former students start touching by stomach. I'll see them in the hall, and they stop to talk to me. Of course they are all very excited I'm pregnant which is really quite cute. But then, all of a sudden, my belly is being touched! And it's not just being touched sometimes, it's being rubbed! I don't want to hurt their feelings (by the way all these instances have been with formal female students), but I don't really enjoy them rubbing or touching my stomach. So what do I do? Do I rudely tell them, "Please don't touch my stomach"? Or do I just suffer through? And what about those that do ask? If they are really creepy I have no problem saying no. But what about those that are really sweet, but I just don't want touching my stomach?

What do I do! I still have 22 weeks to go. I'm thinking I should wear the shirt shown above. I like green.

Disclaimer: I am totally okay with family and close friends touching my stomach, so don't take offense.

Friday, September 5, 2008

I'm It!

Okay, so I got tagged by Jen Romney and will thus finally update my blog. Here are a few updates:

1) To the blogging world:
In case you didn't know I am prego. I'm due Feb. 20th, and I find out in 2 weeks what we're having. Super excited! I can't find my camera at this moment, so I'll post pics as soon as I find it.

2) School started again, and in case you don't know, I teach at American Falls High. On the first day of school I was calling roll and came across the name "Dalton". I saw two hands go up - one near my desk where I was standing, and the other in the far back corner of the room. So I said, "Dalton D.?" It was the kid who was closest to me. Then I got the other Dalton and the other hand went up again. So I said, "There she is!" The class starts chuckling and I ask them what I did. They proceed to tell me that Dalton is a boy. Holy crap! That's an awkward moment! How was I supposed to know? All I could see was long brown hair! So we make a joke out of it and I tell them all how I'm no longer using the personal pronouns "he" and "she". From now on I'm calling everyone "it".

I think the kid has forgiven me and seems very nice to me. I'm just hoping it's not some fake facade and one day he's going to come and stab me when I'm all alone in my classroom. (The picture is not of Dalton by the way, but the hair is very similar.)

3) I am certified to teach chemistry at the secondary level (grades 6-12). As of last the state of Idaho has decided that I am not "highly qualified" to teach physical science, which is basic chemistry and physics. Don't these people have any common sense? If I'm qualified to teach upper-level chemistry shouldn't that also make me qualified to teach an introductory chemistry class? Oh, and I'm supposed to be mentored for a year from the biology teacher who is endorsed in physical science but hasn't taught it in over 20 years. Nice.

4) I do an assignment with my physical science classes at the beginning of the year where they have to investigate a double murder. This double murder however involves Toucan Sam and Pop Krispie. I go on an on about how the murder was on the news and that I've been working with the authorities on possible suspects. They include Captain Crunch, Tony the Tiger, etc. So this is a silly joke, right? Not to some. About 5 minutes into my story of the murder, a blonde freshman girl raises her hand and asks, "So we're not going to have those cereals anymore?" It was such a classic freshman moment!

5) Like Jen I too did a pagent when I was in high school. But mine wasn't really a pagent, it was a "scholarship program"!

And now I tag the person who let everyone know I freak dance - Miles Romney at the City Fathers blog. :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Personal Bubble

So I was at Walmart a little while ago and all the lines were crazy long. I usually don't use the self check-out line because the people there are totally incompetent. This time however there was a guy who was almost finished, so I jumped behind him. As I was waiting, a guy and his three teenager daughters got in line behind me. At first I thought he was so close so that the traffic behind him wouldn't be hindered. So I kept sneaking forward, but so did he. His voice was so loud in my ear - I'm pretty sure I could feel his breath on my neck.
Well finally it was my turn. I only had 3 items. His cart was totally bumping into mine, and his daugthers kept coming closer too. Finally, when I was paying I had to use my wallet as a shield when entering my pin. Oh my gosh! Haven't these people ever heard of a personal bubble!!!
I was so annoyed that these people had invaded my private space. Especially when someone is doing a financial transaction where they have to use their pin!

I know in other countries personal bubbles are a lot smaller, and maybe I'd get used to it. But as for now, please keep out of my personal bubble!!!

P.S. This doesn't really apply to family or close friends - just people I don't know or don't like - especially people I don't like.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Guns In the House

On the topic of guns, I don't really understand why some people are so avidly against owning any sort of gun, especially if you have kids. I know that there are many many accidents involving kids and guns where one or more of the kids was either injured or killed. But I don't think it was just having a gun in the house that caused the accident. I think it's a combination of the kid's personality and how the parents handle having a gun in the house. I don't have kids yet, but I was raised in a house with guns, and I think you can have guns in the house without having your kids get into trouble with them.

I think the trick in this situation is to educate your kids and to not make the gun like it's some secret/special toy. Take your kids out with guns and teach them gun safety. Teach them how to safely handle a gun, shoot a gun, and act around guns. Also, I think if you make it known that you'll take them out to shoot regularly, then they won't be tempted to take the gun and go shoot it without you. This way, when their friends come over and want to see the gun, your kid will know to say, "Yea, when my dad gets home he can show us his guns. He'll even take us shooting if we ask."

So yea, I'm one of those parents that will have a whole bunch of guns in the house with kids. And if you are so terrified of guns that you won't even be near one, I think you are just ignorant.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

High School Drama

As the school year drew to a close, I reflected on the many counts of high school drama I saw my students encounter throughout the year. The hook-ups, the break-ups, the cheating, the sports, the girl fights, the boy fights, the homework, the blah blah blah. Oh and we can't forget the tremendous sadness that comes with graduating and or just not seeing all your friends for a whole summer.

Then I was reminded of my own high school experience. I know I went through all that drama (or most of it), but as I look back I can't help but think, "Why couldn't you have just been more mature?" And then I ask that same questions of my students. I know those feelings they are experiencing, but sometimes it's hard to actually sympathize with them and not just laugh hysterically at them. I'm not sure if what I feel is actually coming across clearly, but I hope you get my point. I know that the high school drama is hard, but can't you just get over it and grow up? Hopefully I'll be able to muster up more sympathy when I have teenagers of my own. As for now, however, I'm content with laughing and getting a kick out of my students "pain".

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Family Pet

Someday when Miles and I have some land, we will definitely have a pet. I have compiled two lists: those pets I would have and those I wouldn't.

Pets I Would Like:
  • Sheltie - this is the dog that I grew up with. They are are like a collie, but smaller.
  • Yellow Lab - they are the classic family dog.
  • Golden Retriever - these puppies are SO cute!

  • Cool fish like the pretty tropical fish. Beta fish would be especially cool because then I could watch them fight the other fish.

  • Horse - I really like horses, but they are high maintenance. So we'd need lots of money and lots of land.

  • Puppy - If I could have a puppy that would stay a puppy, it wouldn't matter what breed.
Pets I Would NOT Like:

  • Any sort of cat - I am about the farthest thing from a cat person.

  • Chihuahua - not a big fan of small dogs or a dog that reminds me of Taco Bell everytime I see it.

  • Bulldog - I think these dogs are just plain ugly

  • Afghan Hound - talk about a lot of hair! Too much and again, way too ugly.

  • Boring fish like guppies or gold fish.

  • Birds - they are loud and poop a lot.

  • Any sort of rodent - i.e. hamster, mouse, rat, etc.

Friday, May 9, 2008

My So-Called Asanine Argument

During my prep hour I have two independent study students whom are both girls. I usually let them listen to their ipods while they work. I heard them mention ICP (Insane Clown Posse) the other day and asked them what they thought of them. One responded that she did not like them while the other said she did like them. As I hear their reponses my mind was flooded with thoughts of disgust towards this band. I first learned of them at a drug/gang conference I attended last fall. For those of you not familiar with ICP, here's a little background before I continue:
In 1991 Joseph Bruce, a founding member of ICP, had a dream where "a caravan of strange and powerful beings" appeared to him in what appeared to be a traveling circus (Wikipedia). As he talked to his psychologist about the dream, he was advised not to act out these violent instructions but rather express them through music. So he did. He and his band members set out to spread their message of "reform". Each album revolves around a joker character who has a specific message on how to change your ways before the end comes. Here's a sample of one of their songs entitled "The Thrill of the Kill":

I'm shakin' so fast that you could say I'm vibratin'
There's a sickness in my head a hunger escalatin'
There's no other ending to this s**t so why the f*** I'm waitin'
Hop into the darkness for my homicidal break-in
I thought it out for many weeks I even told a reverend
But he ain't even listenin' 'cause I'm over elevenI told my girlfriend and she just said it was cute
Then asked me how she looked in her f*** me boots and took off
[Shaggy 2 Dope:]Sweatin' and my chest is burnin' like I'm on fire
So much pressure in my head I could blow air in through a car tire
I'm about to burst pop shatter explode
And everybody's pokin'sticks at me like they wanna splat me
[Violent J:]No one sees me when I creep I stay behind s***
Check for open windows I scale across and climb s***
Get inside and choke an old lady in her Craftmatic
And like fresh oxygen to an asthmatic I get a thrill
[Chorus:]Every time that a door gets closed. The thrill
Every time that the reaper shows. The thrill
Every time that the red blood flows. The thrill
I gets my proper dose
Every time, (every time) every time (the thrill)Every time, (every time) every time (the thrill)Every time that the red blood flows. The thrill

Okay, so now that you are totally disturbed, back to my story. I proceeded to tell this student what I thought of ICP and how no one should listen to music that has those kind of lyrics. When a person listens to violent, sad, happy, humorous lyrics, their actions and thoughts are influenced. She then told me my argument was "asinine". How can you say that music doesn't affect you?!! Then the thought came to mind, "So maybe that's why you're such an angry teenager!"
The APA (American Psycological Association) did a study on violent lyrics and found that they do increase aggressive thoughts and feelings ("Exposure to Violent Media: The Effects of Songs With Violent Lyrics on Aggressive Thoughts and Feelings," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology Vol. 84, No. 5.). I've always felt that music greatly influences the way a person thinks, acts, and interacts with other people. And yes, I do think that ICP influenced those boys to kill Cassie Jo Stoddart here in Idaho. They wore clown masks and repeated lyrics of ICP as they went to murder Cassie Jo. I'm not saying ICP made those boys commit the crime, but I don't think ICP had nothing to do with it. Whether you're listening to happy, violent, funny, or spritual music, an impression is left on your thoughts, feelings, and tendencies.

How's THAT for a first blog!