Wednesday, December 31, 2008

new years eve



No evening with my boyfriend for me. He was off to the youth dance.





But I did have quite an evening making cookies with Courtney, Carter, Jonah, Natalie, Kirstie, and Brianna.


The cinnamon rolls were also made  and ready for eating just after midnight...DSC04039

...right after we watched the new Macy's Spaceball make it's first descent.

10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1


Happy New Year


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

kennedy space center


DSCF0120 DSCF0115



space gifts

The boys collected their IOU Christmas Presents.

For Carter, the Antwork Farm which has the kind of gel that the astronauts took ants in to outer space. The ants eat it and dig in it and it must have kept them from floating around in the rocket. We used a couple of these type of farms in my classroom a few years ago with success. For Jonah, it was something that had big fatty-fat boosters. And he got it.


poor thing

DSC04021 While most of the family went off to the Cape, Brianna, Izzybella and I came home with the hope that Izzybella could get some rest. DSC04022

She has been sick since she arrived with a horrible hacking cough.

I would have to say that she seems  restless rather than resting.

Monday, December 29, 2008

cocoa beach

84 degrees...just perfect 



DSC03984 DSC03988 DSC04006 DSC03989 DSC03996

Sunday, December 28, 2008

star testing

My grandkids usually make a trip to my classroom when they come to visit to check out their reading levels. They are "stars."DSC03969

Courtney at academic age 3.4 tested at 5.3 and

Carter at academic age 1.4 tested at 3.2

Saturday, December 27, 2008

sea world

We are making use of our Sea World passes this last week of December before their's expires. I got a new free one today, which they give to all teachers. It is a really nice perk that I wanted to take advantage of before I retire in a couple of weeks. Fortunately for me, the pass is good until next December. But now I am wondering, who I will go with?


Friday, December 26, 2008

Thursday, December 25, 2008

jesus once of humble birth


How grateful I am to know that He lived and that He lives.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

twas the night before christmas



And all through the house...




...we were celebrating. DSC03845 Brianna, Drew, Britta, George, Morgan, Chris, Pierce

The Doerfler Family came over to join us. We had traditional English fare including roast beef and yorkshire pudding. I opted to make a pumpkin yule log rather than trifle (which I have never made, but plan to in the future. ) Our friends the Blakemores  never fail to send us crackers from England. George was feeling quite special that he got the purple crown. My favorite joke: What do you get when you cross a shark and a snowman?

Later, Britta and I were amazing and won all the games that we played much to the chagrin of our opponents!



there's only

one more

sleep 'till




Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Christmas is such a great time of the year, but in our culture it generally requires extra effort of some sort. Today it was house cleaning least for the downstairs. I worked Brianna for quite a few hours, nonstop. We were both good and tired when we finished. I probably wouldn't have thought anymore about it until I saw this...


...this morning in my laundry room.

Is that a bit of ribbon in your beak?

DSC03842 All of a sudden, I started wondering exactly where Brianna went last night?

Since I was only getting unintelligible  information from her friend--DSC03843


I opened up the window, which facilitated a hasty retreat.

I figured I better give Brianna the day off...


...either that or follow her tonight!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

time for tennis with the teets
























We have played almost every weekend since summer.

We always have fun. We try to play three sets: One with Doug and I playing Rick and Linda. One with Linda and I playing Doug and Rick. One with Linda and Doug playing Rick and I.

We always laugh. That is because Rick says really funny things like "dag nab it" and "it makes me sick" with enthusiasm!

We get some exercise running around the court and a few  injuries from wayward flying balls and unintended muscle abuse.


We might  even be getting a little bit better at

                                                     playing the game.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

almost christmas break

When I walked into class today, or I should say when they kids came into class today, they were already wild and crazy. I could not believe that I was going to spend the next eight hours or so with them. Surely only a crazy person would then attempt to make gingerbread houses" with graham crackers and loads of candy with that kind of group...DSC03728

...I was completely and utterly exhausted by the time school got out. Fortunately, Doug and I had been invited to see the Encore Performance of  The Christmas Sweater.

It was the perfect antidote. christmas sweater

Fathom and Mercury Radio Arts present an Encore screening of Glenn Beck’s The Christmas Sweater on Thursday, December 18th . This show will be recorded live the previous night and is being rebroadcast for this special Encore showing. The Christmas Sweater  based on Glenn Beck's novel of the same name. It is an exciting and compelling piece of theatre, featuring national television/radio personality Glenn Beck, a 10-piece orchestra and a Broadway gospel singer. Filled with warmth and humor, The Christmas Sweater tells the story of real people as they come to terms with tragedy, family, redemption, love and the power of faith. The Christmas Sweater is, quite simply, a good story well told.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

scripture study

A number of years ago, Marty Share, from the Fort Myers Stake sent my husband a copy of their stake's scripture study program. I thought it looked very cool. I thought about it off and on throughout the year as I struggled with my inconsistent reading patterns. The next year Marty sent the next version. I asked my husband if I could have it and he told me that I could.

I read faithfully for the first six months and then my study fell apart during the summer. When December rolled around, I collected the booklet from my husband and tried again, armed with a plan. I realized that during the summer, I needed something lightweight and portable, so I would save the conference issue talks for vacation days. It worked like a charm and after three years I was successful in completing the entire program. But even the two previous years, and even with my inconsistencies, I still felt that I was doing better than I had in the past.

On a fairly regular basis, when Doug and I were having a discussion, I would be reminded of something that I had just read.

The next year Doug decided to implement the program in our stake. We are now in year five! The Bend Oregon Stake joined us last year, and so it became a coast-to-coast program. It has been such a blessing in my life.

The 2009 downloadable version is here in pdf format.

I am pleased to send a booklet to anyone who GetAttachmentwould like one. Just send me an email with your address and it will be on it's way-- because today a group of us did a little service project putting together a thousand of them in case you want to use them for your 

                                  2009 Scripture Study.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

christmas shopping

I love to go Christmas shopping with my husband. Luckily for me, he is a shopper. Today we walked around Millenia Mall and went to lunch, but the only purchases we brought home were from the Whole Foods Market in Winter Park. DSCF1748

I have been enjoying my "all natural peppermint Candy Cane Taffy" this evening as well as the happy feelings evoked from the day just hanging out together.

Monday, December 15, 2008

the garden in december

Also known as Garden Bloggers Bloom Day (GBBD). I am not really a garden blogger, but I still enjoy this monthly tradition of photographing whatever is blooming in the garden. My poor garden has had so little care the past few months. Apart from when the Claytons have taken care of has had no love. Nevertheless, it did not disappoint today. And some showoffs  appeared today just so that they could be featured in the photo shoot. For example:


This one...and she brought six of her friends along with!DSC03714

DSC03685 The bottlebrush tree is just starting to show.

DSC03716I loved the poppies growing wild that we saw when we lived overseas. They grew really well in California too. When I spotted a seed packet, I decided to try them again. I now know that I was trying to grow them in the wrong season previously. It is too hot in Florida to grow them in the summertime as they do elsewhere.

Another winter favorite in Florida that I am so pleased to finally have had some success with is cilantro!DSC03711





The Swedish fig baskets are still  beautiful!


DSC03681These are two flowers from the garden show that are blooming their heads off for me!DSC03680DSC03700The bougainvillea shows her colored leaves year round and deserves a shout out now and then!




I have green beans growing...not very many, but I am delighted with my farming pursuits this winter anyway.DSC03688




The other day when I saw flowers on the sweet peas, it was so exciting. The flowers are deep purple, but obviously camera shy. I have hope for peas at some point!




DSC03718 My Seguine grandkids will be thrilled to know that there are loads of tangerines and oranges ready and waiting for them to pick!DSC03717