Thursday, August 28, 2008

Two more!

I started the penultimate semester last night. Yea!

I will be overloaded with work. Boo!

The instructor from one of the last courses is teaching again, and it is really a continuation of the last course. So it still requires a paper a week, and even more reading to prepare for it. And to boot, the other course I have is also reading heavy and a few more papers to write.

The interesting part of this semester is that 30%-35% of grades for each of the courses will be based on the integrated group project. It ties together most of the coursework up to now, with a heavy influence on the current courses. But really it is a really long paper that my group will have to write.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fund raising-Oh Joy!

My five year old brought home a fund raising packet for his school today. Suddenly all the horrors of public school fund raising drives have come back to me. I hated fund raising time and I had to do it a lot. Not only for school, but for sports too. There were the candy bar drives, the Holiday gift drives, the walk-a-thons, the magazine drives, the car washes. They keep getting more creative every year. My little next door neighbor sold cookie dough. The middle school in our area was selling pie gift certificates. We also can't forget the girl scout cookies (I love thin mints!).
I hate how they try to get you excited about the whole thing. You get a prize for selling stuff. The more stuff you sell, the bigger the prize! Then, the class that sells the most gets an additional prize. So, as a kid, even if you don't care about the stupid prizes, you are totally letting your class down by not participating. But no one in their right mind is going to buy 150 different items. So you have to hit up your relatives and next door neighbors to help. They only buy because they don't want to crush the poor little kindergartner staring up at them with those huge innocent eyes (not to mention the parents who don't want to do the same). Its guilt buying at its worst. I hate everything about it. I hate feeling guilty and I hate making other people feel guilty.
So, Chad and I have decided we will not do it. If you think about it, who gets most of the money from these things anyway? A good portion of it goes to the company selling the items. Basically they are using these kids to sell their stuff. Talk about a cheap and effective marketing strategy. The kids don't get paid anything, and they manage to get people to buy their stuff who would never have dreamed of buying it otherwise. I think my money is better served going directly to the school. Now, did I suddenly hear a collective sigh of relief coming from everyone I know?

Sunday, August 17, 2008

G-man and the Law

Today in Primary, G-man had a lesson on obeying the law. One of the kids was the stop sign, and G-man was the obedient car as they ran around the room. He stopped just as he was supposed to. Then, the teacher asked G-man to be the disobedient one, and he said that he "would not want to do that".

Later, the teacher asked if they would tell a time when they, the kids, were not obedient, and G-man said "I am obedient most of the time, but I can tell a time when my sister is not obedient. Every time mommy asks us to do our hair, I listen to mommy, but my sister does not."

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Please, No More Watermelon!

We all remember those things our siblings told us to freak us out . "Don't swallow your gum because it takes 7 years to digest," "If you make ugly faces, your face might freeze like that," "If you swallow watermelon seeds, you might grow a watermelon plant in your stomach." The first two I know are not true but after this summer I may actually believe the last could happen (at least if I didn't have a rudimentary grasp of basic plant science).
This summer we had a watermelon plant sprout in our backyard from seeds we spit last summer. It was exciting for the kids to be growing something that they might be able to eat someday. What I did not know is that watermelon vines grow like mad.
The plant is huge, and has produced a number of watermelons. We just picked one that weighed in at 35 pounds! So far we've eaten three, with two 30 pound plus melons to eat. Plus, there are four more growing on the vine now. That doesn't include the first one we picked that wasn't ripe yet and the three that started rotting because they didn't get enough water. Luckily, we're going to visit family in the next few weeks. I'm thinking as more get ripe we'll load some watermelon in our wagon and start "gifting" it to the neighbors. So, if you find a watermelon on your doorstep in the coming weeks, you'll know who to thank.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Yeah for School!

G-man started Kindergarten on Monday. He loves it. The first day he couldn't wait to go. When he got to his classroom, he practically shoved his teacher out of the way to get in. I asked him a few days before if he was nervous. He told me no, and that he didn't like it at home because its boring. Well, yes, I know I'm not that interesting, but could you spare my feelings even a little bit? But, that's what I like about little kids, they will tell you how it is.
I think the boring nature of our house stems from my pregnancy. I got so used to not doing anything because I was so tired all the time. Now that Mr. S is letting me get more sleep, I have more energy. I just need to remember how to be fun again. I've gotten out of the habit of being more silly and a little less serious. Now, without G-man here Kiwi wants to play with me. Mom's brand of silliness may not be as fun as G-man, but its better than nothing.
I have also realized taking away one kid takes away all the fighting. Its really quiet without him here. Instead of getting my house trashed every day, Kiwi and I play together, she helps me do the things I need, we play with Mr. S. I think I'm going to like this new arrangement. Granted, it is only three days into it. We'll see what I'm saying in another week or so.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Olympic Commentary

While watching Swimming: "If people didn't have ears, they'd look funny."

Friday, August 8, 2008

My Favorite Comic Strip

I've always had a love/hate relationship with my name. I love it because it has meaning. I was named after my mom's sister who passed away shortly after birth. I always felt a responsibility to live my life in a way that would make her and my grandmother proud. I hated it in my youth. I wanted to have a "popular" name. I never met another person with my name until Junior High when an 80 year old guest speaker had the same name as me. I was really embarrassed.
My only consolation was my favorite comic strip, 'Luann'. I could completely relate to her and was thrilled that there maybe someone out there named Luann who didn't have gray hair.
I still feel like my name is a bit old-fashioned and a bit southern but also different. I can appreciate that I didn't have to grow up being the third Stephanie in my second grade class. I wonder how the future generation will feel about their unique names with unique spellings that are so popular right now. Its interesting how everyone's obsession with being unique has become another trend that makes them the same as everyone else.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Imagination? Nope, don't have one.

Somewhere between childhood and adulthood I seem to have lost my imagination. We've been enjoying a nice summer lull between swim lesson and school. Mr. S has gotten into a bit of a schedule, (which includes a three hour nap!), so I finally have some time to do stuff. Yesterday I tried to play with my kids. Kiwi asked me if I would play dollhouse with her, so I sat down to give it a shot. All I could think to do was put the furniture in the house, and then have the mommy doll put the baby doll to bed, feed the brother, go grocery shopping, do laundry. . . We quickly moved to coloring, which is something I can handle.
I've been contemplating my inability to play with my little girl and have realized that I was never a very creative child. My doll play involved running my little families through an entire life cycle. The mom and dad would meet, get married have kids. They're kids would grow up, meet someone else, get married, have kids and on and on. I had a bear family with dolls that ranged in age from infant to grandparents, so it worked. But how boring!
I've been watching my kids play this morning as their play gets progressively more creative. There's a cat, dog, panda, yak, a bunny, a few baby dolls, and some Weebles all getting ready to go to school. The bouncy chair is a bus with spiderman pez dispensers for controls. Earlier the Boppy was being used as a computer. Then there are the strangely high pitched voices that I've had to become accustomed to. All in all, they're imaginations are awesome and I just can't think like that anymore. I feel so sorry for the shock Kiwi will be in when her favorite playmate starts Kindergaren next week.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Ending the Semester

Finally, this semester is almost over. So far so good, with one A earned, and hopefully at least one more. The classes started out hard, but with a little bonus points on a few quizzes and one midterm, the end result might very well be a clean sweep with As. :)

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Long, Long, Long, Long...Day

Whenever Kiwi wants to tell about something she remember, (even if it happened five minutes previously), she starts by saying: "Mom, a long, long, long, long, long (however many longs she chooses to make it) day..." Mom: "A long time ago?" Kiwi: "yes, I jumped over the doll in the playroom." Well, today was a long long long day, not just a long time ago.
Currently our church building is having electrical work done and is therefore uninhabitable during our 100 plus degree temps. Our stakes solution to the problem was to send the three wards in our building to sacrament meeting at the stake center with another ward. We go at 8:30am, stay for sacrament, and then go home. This has been the case for the past two Sundays and hopefully will not happen again. The reason being, when we get home at 10:00am, we have to fill the entire day with "Sunday appropriate activities" for our 5 and 3 year old. Unfortunately those types of activities are pretty boring. We disallow television on Sundays, although G-man is starting to note the hypocrisy in this rule since Chad and I turn on the TV as soon as they are in bed. The thing with having kids two years apart is when they get bored they fight. Plus, mommy and daddy are tired from getting up at 6am, so they yell. Combine the two and we might as well turn on the TV all day because that is way more Sunday appropriate than the contention caused by the boredom in our house.
So, I guess the conclusion is we sure hope the electricity to our building gets turned on so we can get back to 11am church and the two hours of entertainment provided by nursery/primary.