Friday, December 31, 2010


Happy New Year's Eve Illustration Friday! This week's prompt is "resolutions". I had a feeling it might be something along those lines.

I've been formulating a few resolutions of my own as it's that time of year. Any bad habits out there waiting to be kicked? New ones waiting to be tooken up? Care to share?? (Is "tooken" a word?)

Happy New Year, everyone!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

what I got for Christmas

Oh, right, as if you care!

Actually, I realized it's been a while since I've visitied the bloggie. Well, it IS the holidays, but then again I have practically NO social life...

That class is keeping me just busy enough, and I'm having fun with it. It's a large class, so there are actually 4 of us teachers. I've only ever done a class with 2 teachers, so while 2 is company, 3's a crowd, 4's a party! (According to Andy Warhol I think).

In the midst of that, the kids and Magnum are all off from school/work this week. Christmas was fun and now, I think we've sorted through all the stuff that we plan to keep and all the stuff that will be happily chucked out the door donated.

On Christmas eve, a guy answered a craigslist ad I had out there to sell Wolfgang's Guitar Hero II PS2 game and guitar. He showed up at the agreed upon time, and I went out to meet him in the driveway. Little did I know, it was a gift for his kids, who were in the car. The buyer pounced upon me and swiftly stuck the contraband in his hoodie while handing me a twenty. We've had good luck selling stuff on craigslist despite some of the bad press it gets. The pouncing didn't even come close to anything juicy.

Aside from video games, Magnum and I often get games for the family at Christmas. This year we got Scattergories per Wolfgang's favorable review. It's a good time. (A word of caution, however: If your required letter turns out to be a "P", the word "*enis" will probably come to mind for every category for that round, it happened, just sayin').

And now, we count down to the new year. We're planning on running our annual midnight mile once again despite a weather forecast of temperatures in the single digits - or maybe even negatives! Wolfgang was totally determined to do it topless this year, and I was actually going to join him in that (within reason).

Forget about it!

Friday, December 24, 2010


Happy Christmas Eve Illustration Friday! This week's prompt is "winter".

I like how the birds that stick around all year get all bulbous in the winter. It seems like they should freeze, but they always just look so fat and happy and carefree. Maybe I'll name this one "Botero".

I hope all who read this have a special holiday season! Maybe take it easy on the suet, though...

Thursday, December 23, 2010

frosty silence

I went out back this morning to clean up the dog run and thought I'd take a picture before it was all gone.

No, not the dog poo....

It was all purdy frosty this morning. The trees and fences and everything were covered with this frosty natural flocking. Here in Colorado, while we do get snow, our humidity is actually usually on the low side, so we don't get many frosty mornings like today's.

My photo doesn't really do it justice, but it's all I've got.

In other news, Meego's not speaking to me. Meego's not speaking to anyone. Laryngitis has claimed his voice. Remember being 10 years old? Remember how much you probably liked to talk? He's rather bummed, so we (pretend to) feel badly for him.

In other other news, all of my gift packages have arrived, so Christmas is a go. And.... LOWERS VOICE TO A MERE WHISPER.... I got this little missive from the milk man!:

Can you believe? How Risque! How BRAZEN! It was just sitting in the cooler right there on the front stoop! What if Magnum or one of the kids would've gotten to it before I did!?

Well, alls well that ends well, anyway. Clearly, he can't stop thinking about me.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Oy, what a day

We're easing into the holidays, right? RIGHT?!

Last Friday, I got a last minute request to help teach a class. No problem, I was actually happy for the work since I didn't have anything else going on, and it's just 3 sessions per week and no interference with any of our holiday plans.

So these online classes, they're always listed in Eastern time and we just convert accordingly. You'd think I could manage a 2-hour time difference! But NooOOOoooo...

Then, I don't know what it was, but I stepped outside to take China the crazy dog for her walk when it finally occurred to me that I had added 2 hours instead of subtracted. The class I was supposed to be helping to teach had just ended it's first session!
*SHITAKE MUSHROOMS!!* (Yeah, I teach math... no really!)

I (virtually) ran over to the classroom to find it empty with nothing but (virtual) post class trash in there. So I ran over to the (virtual) front desk to see what was what. Normally, if a teacher doesn't show up, the front desk people are all over the phones.

Anyway, to spare further boring details, the front desk didn't call because I was just added Friday and they were unaware. There were other teachers there, and they just managed. It's all squared away now and I will be there on time tomorrow MORNING!

So, after that waste, I decided I'd go to the police station because I have to get fingerprinted for that crossing guard job. Nothing like some good old government inefficiency to brighten a day! And such lovely people to share it with!

Actually, I should be happy that it only took an hour.

And the drive home was quite lovely and carefree on a nice sunny day. Except.... have I mentioned that I live near a mall?

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Happy Illustration Friday on a Saturday! This week's prompt is "mail".

It's that time of year when many of us are relying heavily on the mail. I just got a message today that the last of my gifts from amazondotcom have officially shipped. They've got a week to get here. Preferrably sooner.

But I went with the message-in-a-bottle theme, because it seemed like more fun than mail order stuff. It's kind of like blogging. Just throw something out there and see what happens.

Besides, after the Christmas mail arrives, the bills are sure to follow.

Friday, December 17, 2010

it's a start

Or is it a "STOP!"

I got a little part-time job today. Our elementary school needs a crossing guard, to start after the New Year. I dressed in my loudest clothing and applied.

I now just need to complete the paperwork and get officially trained, and the big flashy stop sign thing and bright orange vest are mine. I'm actually quite looking forward to it.

See, this isn't just some little neighborhood street like in the kids' books. I will be reigning terror on a 5-lane, 40 m.p.h. BOULEVARD, baby! I will OWN it for approximately 2 hours a day. All these years of pent up bicycle commuter traffic frustration are about to surface.

As expected, it doesn't pay a whole heckuva lot. But like I told Magnum:

"No vamos a ser ricos, pero voy a ejercer un poder mucho más!"
(He's doing the learn-spanish thing too, so we speak it to each other, it's hawt.)

Translation: "We won't be rich, but I will wield much power!"

Bring it.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

just a ramble

Okay, remember when I was all busy with class sessions and tutor students and internet troubles and Spanish lessons and everything?

Well, the class ended, the tutor students ended, the internet troubles ended. At least I'll always have Spanish lessons.

I've been thrown into reflective mode now that I've got the time. See, I like my job, as in I like WHAT I do. But, I don't particularly like WHEN I do it. The "when" being evenings and/or weekends. The nature of our classes is such that our students typically work or go to school during the day, so our classes are offered on evenings and weekends. Not so good for la familia

I had a little chat with my boss, who was very understanding and helpful, and I'm cutting back my hours.

I want a day job. A part-time, fun, fulfilling, purposeful day job. That pays. I've been reading a career counseling type book from the library, and that's been helpful. Mostly it's been helpful showing me what I don't want to be doing.

Truth be told, material wealth isn't high on my list of priorities. Really, just ask my neighbors. But apparently, I like to be kept busy doing something that's of use to SOMEBODY.

In the meantime, my house is (relatively) clean and the dog is much walked.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Silver Liningness Sunday

I'm not sure, but I think I've been remiss with the silver liningness posts. However, I do remember that I gave thanks for our slaughtered Thanksgiving turkey...

Either which way, let the resumption... uh... resume!

Firstly, we got a new internet service provider this week. The *bomb blast* is no more. I was able to actually attend all of my online classes this week without a glitch, yay. Said classes wrapped up at the end of the week. Big Test yesterday.

I'm thankful that it was an enjoyable class, despite the one-week of connectivity hell. One feature of these online classes is that two teachers are assigned as opposed to just one as in the "brick and mortar" classrooms. This was the first time I'd worked with this particular co-teacher, and we had a good time and hopefully made strides in leading the students to the promised land. This tag-team teaching approach helps me to be a better teacher.

In movie news, Magnum and I watched "Brothers". We'd seen the original Danish version a few months ago. This is a gritty, provocative story, and I typically like the original foreign versions of movies better than the Hollywood. In this case, however, I liked the Hollywood version better. Although it was difficult to see Spiderman as a Marine Captain, everything else worked nicely, and I thought the acting was exceptional, including the young girl who plays the oldest daughter. I felt the wife in the Danish version was kind of a ditzy space cadet, and I didn't particularly like her. Natalie Portman did a better job. It's not perfect, but I'll give it 4 grenades out of 5.

The clases de español continue, and I think I'm making progress. I can almost sometimes understand "Planeta Salvaje" on Telemundo.

Friday, December 10, 2010


Hello and happy Illustration Friday, where this week's prompt is the open-ended "Phenomenon".

So I tried to get a little abstracty-ish mysterious-ish weirdy-ish and ended up with this-ish (solar eclipsy-ish). But call it whatever you want.

Either way, it's nice to be back into the weekly pattern. I totally missed last week's entry, but I was in the aforementioned throes of work busyness and technical issues with a bit of laziness thrown in. I hope that was just a rare and unnatural phenomenon.


Monday, December 6, 2010

and another thing...

I mentioned the internet connectivity issues (which are hopefully fixed now - crossin' my fingers) keeping me from regular blog time. The other piece of it is...

I'm a little burnt out on computer time. See, there's the online class that's going on. It's 4 hours/session, 4 sessions/week. Then there's the stressed out online tutor students. That's a lotta computer time for me. And I'm still doing my computer based Spanish... Yo estudio espanol de la computadora!

SO, that means that when I'm not teaching and I'm not learning, and I'm not dealing with Tech Support, it's time to JUST WALK AWAY. In other words, all this responsible behavior is keeping me from my slacker hobby of blogging.

Be clear, however, that it will not last. The class ends this week. Big test this Saturday, so stressed or not, the tutor students are done. And I have little work on the horizon until after the New Year.

In the words of Arnold The Terminator... (right, like I would really say it)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

virtually real

Hey, remember me?

Ack, it's been a week. We're having troubles with our internet service. Really, the troubles aren't THAT bad, if we were just regular subscribers, but they're wreaking havoc on my online classrooming.

So, I've been on the phone lots with tech support. They probably see the caller ID, and think "oh crap, it's her again...", but geesh, who do I gotta sleep with to get a reliable connection around here?!?

Anyway, we're switching providers. I think I've given the current crew - won't mention any names, but rhymes with "BOMB BLAST" - more than three strikes. They're out. New guys' time to shine. The switch happens on Monday. All this in the middle of a 4-week long online class. I've got a 2-hour online tutor session later this afternoon. I'm just hoping the ship holds together for that.

BUT OTHER THAN THAT.... it's been good times as usual around here.