Friday, February 25, 2011

Confession is good for the soul or something...


I Confess... that last Friday I made my girls eat grapes for a snack outside while I totally ate a chocolate cupcake with no frosting on it in the kitchen. I am a bad role model.

I Confess... That there is a huge, scary The Birds sized flock of birds on my front lawn, and I am hoping that they are eating the web worms and not laying in wait for me to go get the mail. I may send Mojo out to get it. Seems I didn't quite work out all my bird fears in Venice after all.

I Confess... My computer files are so unorganized that I cannot find the picture of me in Venice with pigeons on me that I wanted to insert above.

I Confess... That I have been too busy making these little cuties to do much blogging this week.

I Confess... That I think Mojo is starting a pineapple plantation. I have no less than THREE potted pineapple tops on my kitchen counters. I think growing pineapples is cool. We did it once before and actually grew a small pineapple. But, three? Soon they can go outside and then he can grow as many as he likes! For now, I am running out of counter space!

I Confess... That I am going to be super busy with an incredibly secret project and probably won't blog too much over the next couple of weeks.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Jennifer Thursday!!!

It's that time again... Time for another Jennifer song!

One of my favorites!!! Enjoy!!!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Reading, shmeading...

Okay, we all know that I love to read, right? I have made no secret of the fact that I read books like other people eat potato chips.  I read 161 books last year and so far this year have completed 23 books. Just check out my Shelfari bookshelf. Go ahead, it's right over there to the right. I'll wait.

Good, you're back. Okay, deep breath, I really really think the Accelerated Reading program that is in many of the schools these days is awful.  For those of you who are lucky enough to NOT know what this is, it is a program to force "encourage" kids to read.  Basically it works like this. Books are assigned a level and a point range. Then your child reads the book, signs into the web site and takes a test. The Teacher assigns "goals"; reading level, points earned, and percentage of correct quizzes taken.

At my older girls school all the kids who meet their goals are given a school-wide party. The ones who don't make it, can't go to the party. So, no pressure there. Quizzes can only be taken at the school during school hours. Time is put aside every week for the kids to read and take quizzes. Now in theory this is great. BUT imagine you have a child who is reading well above his grade level, but maybe needs help in another area, you can't use the AR time for anything else. It doesn't seem to matter that you can be promoted to the next grade level without the AR goals being met, but NOT if you fail, oh, say, science or math. NOPE, YOU MUST READ. Also what if you are some one who, GASP, doesn't enjoy reading all that much? Too bad, you are pressured and pushed by the Teachers and Administration to "make your goals" Again it really doesn't matter if you are reading three levels above your grade or three levels below. The teachers hands are tied, even if they wanted to use the time some other way they have to have the AR time.

I am a librarian, a lover of books, an addicted reader, but I think this is WRONG! I personally know too many people who HATE reading because of being forced to read in school. Reading is important, don't get me wrong. But could we possibly have some balance? What is wrong with old fashioned book reports? I am afraid that they are turning off more kids than they are helping. I don't see any kids getting any extra help with reading, just being pushed to make those goals.

If this is so all-fired important why can't they take the quizzes at home? They have to learn their spelling words at home, those aren't taught in class even though they are tested on them every week. Half the math is taught at home and not in the classroom, it comes home every night too. But not the stupid computerized reading quizzes.  So apparently I am qualified to teach my kids geometry at home but not to make sure that they don't cheat on a quiz about what happened in the latest Junie B. Jones or Percy Jackson book?

I was really excited about this program when I first heard about it, but after living with it for a year and a half I am over it. Maybe it is different with different Teachers, since they set the goals, maybe they have lower expectations for other students. My girls are in the gifted program and so maybe their bar is higher than average. But I doubt it. AND I do understand that some kids need more exposure to reading. As foreign as it is to me I know there are homes with, gasp, no books in them and no time to read them even if they had them. So programs like this are good for those kids. I do feel that kids like mine, with bookcases of books lovingly chosen to fit their interests and reading levels are being shortchanged and railroaded. One of my daughters, who previous to this program really enjoyed reading has stopped reading unless it is for AR. When asked why she told me, "It's just too much work mom. I have to make my goals, I really don't want to any more reading than that." If a book isn't included in the AR program she won't read it, and there are a lot of good books that aren't in AR.

I heard a rumor that the middle school was more relaxed about it, with no school wide parties and the bribes rewards being kept to the individual teachers. I can only hope.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Friday confessional


I confess...
                 That I totally took a header down the stairs, caught myself halfway down on the banister, which stopped the top half of me from falling but allowed the bottom half to torque around and fly toward the bottom until it was jerked to a stop by my death grip on the banister.  And All I could think as it was happening was " Man, I'm just surprised it took you eight years to fall down the stupid stairs."

I confess...
                 That I just told my three year old (who is whining for a bagel that I do not have) that I could not produce a bagel out of my butt and what else did she want to eat? Who does that? Apparently me!

I confess...
                 That I have to take the dog to the vet today. I take the dog to the vet once a year and I get lost EVERY time. Totally using my GPS this time!

I confess...
                  That the dog sleeps in the converted crib that was the twins. He loves it and it looks nice in the living room AND keeps the 145 pound dog out of my bedroom at night.

I confess...
                  That the 145 pound dog DOES jump into the spot of whoever gets up first in the morning. So so spoiled!

I further confess...
                              That much to the disgust dismay of friends and family I consider my dog one of my children. This does not mean that I take him everywhere with me. C'mon he is enormous! But I take care of him and consider his feelings just as much as the other members of my not so little family.  Just like my other kids he is spoiled spoiled spoiled! Also, just like my other children I feel free to ignore him at will! See, just one big happy family!

I confess...
                 That I am glad Valentines Day is O-V-E-R! I am sick of it! On to Mardi Gras! I am sorry for those of you who don't have this, it is too much fun! The Grand Isle Mardi Gras parade is the absolute highlight of my year! I just love it. I love that we can go to a parade or two or three or four every weekend. I love that I have no idea what to do with the metric ton of plastic beads and toys that  clutter my house every year. I love the music and the marching bands and the fun! Such fun!

I confess...
                 That I haven't eaten any king cake yet this season. That's just sautéed in wrong sauce, y'all!  I have lost ten pounds, so I guess that is a positive. But, oohhhhhh, how I want some.

I confess...
                 That I am letting Breezy the three year old wear non matching stripes and plaids, because I just can't be bothered to fight her about what she is wearing. My new mantra is "This too shall pass, this too shall pass!"
Look at how happy she is in her non-matchyness! How can you resist that grin?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Gag me with a spoon! Seriously

S: "So, Mom what did you do today?"
Me: "I had a meeting with your Teachers for your IEP and a mammogram."
S: "Ewww, we don't need to discuss THAT anymore. It kinda grossed me out on the inside, but I didn't let it on the outside."


S: "Why are you rolling on the floor laughing."

Jennifer Thursday!!!

A pokemon Jennifer song for my girly girls!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day

Really really busy today!  Just a quick look at the goodies I made for the Brownie meeting/party later today...

Now I just have to get them to the party without them getting ruined! Wish me luck!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Friday Confessional

It's that time... that time that is quickly becoming my favorite day to post! So Thanks Glamazon and Mamarazzi for letting me play along....


I Confess...
                     That I am starting this confession on Tuesday.
I Confess...
                      I really really want one of these...

I Confess...
                      That I have hit the mid-year "I hate school" slump. I thought I wouldn't get that anymore once I finally exited the educational superhighway.

I Confess...
                       That I hate having to referee homework.

I Confess...
                       That my daughter bringing home more candy from her Valentines party than she got trick or treating really bugs me! What happened to simple cards. Also there are only 16 children in the class. She should NOT have this much loot! Several kids gave out "goody bag" type valentines with several different types of candy and small toys in them. What's up with that?
I Confess...
                    I am craving red hot candy hearts, but cannot find any in town.

I also Confess...
                    That I am so glad Tomorrow is Saturday I could burst! No lunch-boxes tonight, no homework AND I get to sleep as late as I want in the morning! Thanks to my lovely husband who gets up with the girls every Saturday morning so I can catch up on sleep! Who needs Valentines day? I have every Saturday morning!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Repeat, repeat, repeat. It actually WORKS!!!

I have to repeat everything for my girls. Everyday I have to tell them to pick up their socks, brush their teeth, take their medicine. Even though we do these things in the same order, at the same time every single day of our lives. I keep hoping the the constant repetition will pay off and one glorious day they will remember to do these things (and a million others I haven't mentioned) all on their own.

Recently something happened that gave me great hope.

My Father has a pet name for me. He doesn't really use it now that I am an adult but he loves it. When I was a baby he called me "otter" because apparently I was long and thin and slippery and reminded him of an... otter. So, being the sentimental softy that he is he still gives me books about otters and cards with otters on them and stuff like that. Mojo thinks this is all very sweet and makes sure that I get to see otters whenever there is an opportunity. (because being sentimental myself, otters are my favorite animals).

If the girls are with us whenever there is the mere mention of otters Mojo says to them, "remember girls, there's nobody Otter than your mother!" at which the girls giggle and I groan.

This Christmas, my sweet Dad gave me a stuffed Otter!
Isn't he cute?

Littlest ran up and asked "Mommy, why did Poppy give you a rat?" After I stopped laughing I explained that it wasn't a rat but an otter. Her little eyes just lit up and she whipped around and said "There's nobody otter than my Mommy, Poppy!"

Jennifer Thursday...

Yes, it's that time of the week! Another Jennifer song! Aren't we great?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

more Valentines

You know, you would never really know it by looking at this blog, but we don't really celebrate V-day. It is mostly a kids holiday around here. I don't want some cheesy necklace or chocolate that Mojo bought because corporate America told him he had to or he doesn't love me.  We try to do things all year round that show we love each other. I would rather Mojo came home some random day with something that He just knows  I will love (this actually happens ALOT!), than have him spend money on something because he has to have a gift on a certain day. And luckily he feels the same way! So, that's what we do.

That being said, we DO celebrate with the girly girls. So, I decorate a little more each year. This is what I made today!
It's a little pale for the room, but I used stuff I already had so it has to do!

Monday, February 7, 2011

For My Valentine...

Breezy and I made her Valentines this year. I have always wanted to do this but just felt daunted about how many I would have to make for the twins so I haven't done it before.  It was lots of fun. Breezy helped make the crayons, and she glued the tiny doilies on the cards and helped to glue the finished crayons on the doilies.

I think they turned out well!

Join in on the newbie linky party over at Debbiedoo's!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Confession is good for the soul


I Confess....
        That I am trying to ignore the roar of my children as I type this.

I Confess...
         That I am longing for one day when I don't have to leave my house and can read all day. With no children around all day long!

I Confess...
          That I was so relieved to get the good news about my Mom's cancer treatment that I burst into tears.

I Confess...
             I hate to cry and think it makes me weak. I really don't like to talk about my "feelings" or even really think about them. Mojo says I am such a guy.

I Confess...
          That I sometimes worry about my OCD tendencies as I arrange my hangers by color and type in my laundry room. Then I look around the rest of my house and  breathe a sigh of relief.

I Confess...
         Friday is NOT my favorite day of the week.

I Confess...
        My husband Mojo is my hero.

I Confess...
        I love these critters WAY more than I should. I keep them on the windowsill over my sink to cheer me up when I have to do dishes. They make me happy :)