Friday, February 29, 2008

Time for cards- I finally got some uploaded!

This card I did not make- I received it from my friend Etha. For many years now I have been following her lead in various crafty areas- she tries something new and says "you have to try this" and I do, and then we BOTH have another addiction. I was a perfectly contented scrapbooker until she came along with her cards and her stamps; now I have stamps and inkpads and markers and H2Os and watercolor pencils and a whole bunch of stuff I never heard of a year ago. Aren't friends the best???

This card I made because our longtime and dear friends first became grandparents a few weeks ago. The new parents had not known whether it would be a boy or girl, so the "stuff" for the new baby was built around mint green. Well, she is a girl, so I added the pink. I got to play with SU stamps, H2Os, the cuttlebug with texture plates, the CB with nestabilities, a clear stamp and a Creative Memories punch all in one card. (It doesn't show in the scan, but the pink cardstock is embossed with little hearts.)

Well, that's enough for now. I'm off to get some things done to get ready for the %^&* operation next week.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Some fun

I found this on Lori's blog and had to try it. It was fun but I think their face recognition software needs a little help. Anytime anyone, or anything, thinks I look like Angelina Jolie, they (or it!) need a good eye exam. But what they hey- it's fun!

The picture was taken on a scrapping weekend and is one of the few fullface closeups I have. It was LATE in the day- so please excuse the fact that I look like hell. Anyway- here it is- it's a HOOT!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Well, this really sucks!

Just a quick note. Latest trip to the doctor was today following a bunch of tests last week. News was not good so I will be having surgery on my leg next week. I don't want to miss a lot of days at school, but this cannot wait for the end of the year, so......

There was a truly dreadful TV show a few years ago called Witchblade. One of the characters used to say "every day above ground is a good day". I am focusing on that thought. Bad legs are bad but things could be worse.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I got this list of question's from Suzanne's blog. IF you decide to take these questions and answer them on your BLOG please let me know so I can visit and learn more about you!

1. If your doctor told you TODAY that you were pregnant, what would you say? Call the people at Guiness- I had a hysterectomy 15 years ago!

2. When was the last time you flew in a plane? January 1st coming home from Florida.

3. What did the last text message you sent say? Likely either "np" or "ty"- I respond to them but never initiate them.

4. What features do you find most attractive in the opposite sex? loyalty and humor

5. What is a goal you would like to accomplish in the near future? Getting my house cleaned up and fixed up.

6. Shoe size? 8 1/2.

7. Been to Mexico? Yes, during a cruise in 1996.

8. When is the last time you had a massage? A long time ago- with Fibromyalgia they are dangerous if the masseuse hits a trigger point.

9. What was the last TV show you watched? Actually, I watched a little of "All My Children" this afternoon! Had not seen it in about 10 years, but while checking the guide on the TV, it mentioned Jesse and Angie and since they went off about 20 years ago, I could not resist seeing what was going on.

10. What are your plans for the weekend? Shopping for that ring if the weather improves; keeping the ^&*# legs propped up a lot of the time; getting some downloads for my Silhouette; laundry; and maybe some crafting.

11. If your significant other asked you to marry them TODAY what would you say? Absolutely YES!!!!!!

12. What is in the back seat of your car right now? A pair of crutches, a box of tissues, an umbrella, my shoebox full of tapes (old car!), and Travelling Teddy.

13. What were you doing at 8 am this morning? SLEEPING!!!!

14. If you could marry any celebrity today who would it be? Hmmm, this is a hard one- cannot think of anyone better than the DH I already have.

15. Have you ever been to a strip club? No! And DH loves telling that he has not either!

16. What is the best ice cream flavor? Haagen Daaz Dulce de Leche

17. What is the last sporting event you watched? A golf tournament

18. Ever go camping? No- and not likely to! For me, any hotel without hairdryers, coffee pots and continental breakfast is "roughing it".

19. Last phone call? My "oldest" friend- she is younger than me, lol, but we've been friends since we were six years old.

20. Are you allergic to anything? Penicillen, sulfa, wool, and lots of seasonal allergies

21. What is one thing you have learned about life recently? That is takes a turn whenever you least expect it. Which I already knew but got ANOTHER reminder of.

22. What do you do at work? Teach physics!

23. What is your mom's name? Teresa

24. Ever cried for no reason? No, but I don't always need a sad reason.

25. Can you do the Crank Dat dance? Maybe I could if I knew what it was!

26. What is your favorite color to wear? Black

27. What is the longest plane ride you have ever been on? 11+ hours to Honolulu.

28. What is the longest road trip you have ever taken? Depends on how you define road trip. Usually about 2-3 days, going to Florida or St. Louis. As for the longest time "on the road", that would be the three week trip "behind the Iron Curtain" I took in 1972 with a student group.

29. What are your turn-offs? People who are lazy, incompetent and make other people's lives worse as a result. (Gee- wonder who I am talking about?)

30. What was your last alcoholic beverage? Harp beer.

31. What are you craving right now? Comfort food- so I think I'll go make some homemade macaroni and cheese!

Happy Birthday to ME!

The weather here is dreadful. So, I got up at 5:30 this morning, looked out the window, decided that whoever decided that we should have school today was an IDJIT, called out and went back to bed. Slept til 11AM- heaven!

I've been playing on the computer, reading, chatting on the phone with friends who are also home today, and just generally have a nice day.

DH is currently in Tampa visiting our aunt and spending time playing golf and attending spring training practices. While it would be nice to have him home for my birthday (and Valentine's day- he had already left) there are some perks to his guilty conscience.

Around 2 PM, two dozen long stemmed red roses arrived- gorgeous!!! I was not expecting this as I have spent some time in the last week looking for the EXACT birthday/Valentine's present he told me to choose while he was away- a diamond wedding band. When we got married I was still in school and he was making about $6K a year- hard to believe now- so there was no money for diamonds. I want something small and thin as I have since inherited my grandmother's engagement ring, and do not want to give up wearing my original wedding band, so there will be 3 rings on that finger. I *think* I have found the one I want- if the weather clears tomorrow I am going to go back to the particular jewelry store and order it- but it is MUCH fun shopping.

DS gave me a gift certificate for Shutterfly, so I will be making one of their new large albums- LOVE Shutterfly and all the books I've already made there.

Instead of birthday cake, I am going to make DS and myself Amish Friendship Bread in a fancy bundt pan. So it will be a quiet birthday evening but in weather like this staying in with comfort food and old movies feels great!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

What a day!!!!!

Having a little time away from the TV- my son has confiscated it for Lost and I am not a fan- I decided to post about my day.

Some fool (I could say worse, but not on a family-rated blog!) decided that 7:45 this morning would be a great time to call in a bomb threat at the school where I teach. Just the right time for everyone to have their coats off, most people already in their first class and the rest on their way there. Why are coats an issue? Because at 7:45 this morning, it was 19° with a wind chill of about 11°.

The fire alarm went off, the loudspeaker immediately announced "this is not a drill", the faculty all knew it was serious because there is never a drill during first period, and so 1000 people piled onto the sidewalks outside our huge school building.

It was immediately apparent that no one could stay outside for long in the weather and equally apparent that no one could go back into the building. So, we were all off to our emergency evacuation site- a large church 4 city blocks away, the only place in the area big enough to hold all of us. It was quite a sight, watching 1000 people marching down the street in the arctic temps with no coats. Actually we would make quite a sight even with our coats, lol!

It all went extremely well. The kids were GREAT!!!! They were cooperative, followed directions, and behaved wonderfully in the church for about an hour and a half while the police bomb squad and the dogs searched the building. Then everyone marched the 4 long cold blocks back to school, met in the auditorium for announcments of exactly what had happened and how the day would be finished out, and finally went back to classes.

So, the fool accomplished nothing. Stuff like this, handled well by the adults and dealt with terrifically by the kids, just makes our community stronger.

Then, serendipity struck in my physics class today. The lesson that came up for today, in the normal course of the book and the semester, was satellites. Being able to talk to the kids about how and why satellites stay up on the very morning it was announced that the Navy had exploded the decaying-orbit satellite was amazing timing. The kids decided that everyone who worked on this was a hero who had "saved the planet". The best part though, was that after they understood the basic principles and then we talked about how complicated the calculations had to be to have a missile launched at the exact time to intercept a satellite moving at 17,000 mph, I could say to them that everyone involved in the success of this project had started out at some point in a classroom just like theirs learning that distance= velocity x time. The looks on their faces were priceless- I think maybe a few engineers were born this morning.

All in all it was quite a day!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Not my usual Sunday night

This is Mr. T, one of the Mapogo male lions that I have written about before.

It was an excellent night on the game drive at WildEarth. We saw several of the Mapogo although this is the only one that I could get a clear picture of.

After the Mapogo, there was a visit to a hippo at a waterhole.

Then came another delight! There has been for many months a female leopard and her 2 cubs in the Djuma area. We saw all three of them tonight, but only the young female cub was in a position to get her picture taken- Mom and bro were resting in the tall grass and were too hard to see to take a picture. Here she is:

She is quite beautiful, I think. Here she is resting about 20-30 feet above the ground, laying on a tree branch.

The rest of the weekend was a bit of a dud. I ended up having to come home early from my scrapbooking weekend and the weather is rotten and in general it was not terrific- but seeing both Mapogo and Karula and her cubs sure cheered me up!

Time to get to bed so I can do the morning drive tomorrow. Then I need to upload a bunch of snaps from WildEarth- I am way behind in posting them to my link.

Happy President's Day!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Have a great weekend- I'm going to!

Well, the snowstorm previously mentioned didn't quite pan out as predicted. The rushhour driving was terrible, it took my son 90 minutes to get home from work (normally 30) and there were tons of accidents. The changover to rain came much later than expected, the rise in temperature took place much later than expected, the roads stayed icy through the next morning's rush hour, there were LOTS more accidents, and, after a hazardous and tense morning commute, we STILL had school. NO fun!!!

However, now the school week is over! For an unknown, and NOT to be questioned reason, we are off today. Having packed my bags- one little one for me, and about 5 larger ones of "stuff", I am OFF to the shore for the weekend. My brother's house there needs a plumber visit, so I am going down to see to that- and to scrapbook, read, watch old movies on TV and just RELAX!!! Some friends are joining me there tomorrow to turn it into a "crop weekend" so much fun is anticipated. Here's a view from where we'll be:

Of course it doesn't quite look like this at this time of year, but it is always beautiful to me.
So, off I go for a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

It's a snowy Tuesday

This is NOT the kind of snowstorm that teachers and kids love, though. The driving is very bad right now, people doing the "rush hour" commute are going to be a long, tense time getting home, and by morning it will be all gone and raining. Lots of annoyance, stress and ultimately there will be school tomorrow. Ah, well.

It's been a really tense couple of days here with some problems with the administration at school, but the intervention of someone from the central office that runs the whole system has made it go away. Do they give administrators pills that take away their common sense?

I've been doing a little stamping/cardmaking but none of them are *ready* yet, so nothing to show.

There is a 3rd bloom on the original flower stem of my amaryllis and the bud on the other stem looks almost ready to pop. I am enjoying this so much- it is a treat just to walk past the plant and see those flowers.

The weather in South Africa must be conducive to the animals being active- there have been many more sightings on the drives lately than I was previously used to. I am only able to see the very early part of each drive at night (their dawn time drive) but even that bit has been exciting lately.

This is, obviously, a close-up shot of an elephant's eye (as I type I am hearing Rodgers and Hammerstein in my head). The guide who does many of the drives, Pieter, just loves elephants, so there is always lots of time to sit and observe them whenever he comes across them. One of my favorite things to watch, seen more often on the cams that are set up at waterholes, are the whole families/clans of elephants when they come to drink. Watching the tiny baby elephants scamper around under the adults is just too cute. Saw a video recently where one of the little ones falls into the waterhole and Mom scoops him out with her trunk. Really amazing to watch.

Time to make some dinner! Maybe the weatherman will be wrong and it will snow enough for a day off tomorrow- I would REALLY like that!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

I meant to post this the other day.

Our Craft Club Christmas card sale to raise money for the school's Appalachia project was very successful. Apparently, it got noticed. The National Honor Society has decided to imitate our efforts and are going to have- they think!- a Valentine's Day card sale. However, whoever is running this project clearly has no experience with making cards. How do I know this?

During the morning announcements on Thursday (Feb 7), there was a reminder to all members of the NHS that their design ideas for the Valentine's Day cards were due that day. ideas due one week before they need the cards to sell.

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but asking for advice is sometimes a better idea.

My amaryllis bloomed!!!

Last year (2006) my son gave me an amaryllis plant for Christmas. It blossomed two beautiful flowers and that was it. I continued to let it grow stems through the summer and finally read up on how to try to "force" it to re-bloom this year.
I did everything that I was supposed to do. Cut it back, put it in the garage in the dark, left it there for I forget now how many weeks, etc. Brought it back out so that, according to what I had read, it would bloom again for Christmas. Well, Christmas came and Christmas went, and NOTHING. Finally about 2-3 weeks ago, I got stems. A little over a week ago, I noticed that one of the stems had what looked like a bud on the end. And, three days ago- VOILA!!!
Now, for those with green thumbs, this is no big deal. But for me, who has killed more plants than a bulldozer setting up for a new housing development, this is a MAJOR event! I can keep things like ferns alive, sometimes, but blooming plants? Almost never.
The really exciting part is that not only did it bloom, but if you look closely, you can see that ANOTHER bud has shown up. There will be MORE flowers soon.
So, while this is probably ho-hum for most of the world, for me this is a banner week in plant-growing.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Go, Giants!!!

How about them Giants? Was that a great end of a game, or what?

Like I said before, I am NOT a Giants fan, but having anybody beat those Patriots is always a good thing. And to do it like that! Nobody will ever say that *this* was a boring Super Bowl.

My leg still hurts, but I am in a MUCH better mood than an hour ago.

Taking Time Out from the Super Bowl

This is a tough Super Bowl for me to care about. On the one hand, as a Philadelphia Eagles fan, the idea of rooting for the New York Giants is anathema. However, as the information about the Patriots indicates that they probably won the Super Bowl against the Eagles a few years ago by cheating, rooting for them is even MORE intolerable. So, I am watching in fits and starts and secretly kind of hoping that the Giants win.

As usual, its Sunday night and I am getting ready for a new school week. Clothes are laid out but not ironed yet, and my previous schoolbag contents have been relocated to the hated backpack. Handbags and schoolbags do not work with crutches and wheelchairs.

I saw a few WildEarth drives recently and have been trying to get better with the snaps.
This is a picture of sunrise at Djuma.
I've been taking lots of snaps but so far I have none that I am thrilled with.
More practice is definitely necessary.

No stamping or crafting have been available lately- the setup and moving around to do them are too much for the ^&*% leg. So, no new things to show off. DARN!

OK- this post is getting to sound pretty miserable. I'm off to check out the game again, get those clothes ready, set up the DVR to record "House", and get ready for tonight's drive.