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That clearly there were NO similarities to my life. Just because my 12 year old wrote the story doesn't mean it is about me. Obviously. Anyone who knows me, knows I would never coach soccer; so clearly I am not the mom in this story. (said with as much conviction I can muster, which isn't really all that much.)
Since it is obviously not about me, I am posting some more of it. Enjoy.
Well when I got into town I called the police and told them about the crash and where it was. (I disguised my voice because I didn't want them to think I was pulling a prank.) Then I went to the phone book to look up Rich, John but I didn't find anything. So I resorted to the Internet. Now I know most people would have skipped the phone book and gone straight to the Internet, but I'm not most people. I looked in the phone book because if he was in the city, he would be in the phone book.
Now I need to check the state so I went to the yellow pages.com and I still couldn't find Rich, John. So then I tried the country. That didn't result in anything either. So I tried the world and finally I found one Rich, John in Panama. To be sure I refreshed the page and then he was everywhere. Then he was in Bolivia and then Australia...when the last Rich, John finally icon finally appeared in the Bahamas I began to realize that this was going to be a lot harder than I thought.
I haven't told you where I live. i live in Maine and I have to get 1) enough money for a trip to Florida and 2) I need to book a cruise to the Bahamas. The first thing I did was go to the bank and take all the money out of my savings account and my mom's savings account. I checked to see how much I had and soon realized it was only $1,072. This was going to be a problem. I needed to think of some way to make money.....
I continue to be proud of her active imagination and her desire to write her thoughts down. That being said, I still wish the mom in the story hadn't died. Part of me is a terrified to learn how this 12 year old (not my daughter) is going to earn money. Here's hoping for a very successful lemonade stand!
The Soldier: - By Charles M. Province
It is the soldier, not the reporter, who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us freedom of speech.
If you can read this message thank a teacher,
If you are reading it in English of your own free will THANK A SOLDIER!
It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.
It is the soldier, not the lawyer, who has given us the right to a fair trial.
It is the soldier, who salutes the flag, who serves under the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag.
To all the brave men and women who have dedicated or given their lives
to protecting this country and it's freedoms: Thank you.
Here's what I learned this week.
- Eventually there's no more chicken. We laugh often about how many times chicken is on our menu. Hip chicken, chicken balls, chicken stix, chicken sandwiches, chicken fries...we serve ALOT of chicken. So when I found and purchased funny chicken shirts for everyone and then found out we didn't have chicken THE REST OF THE YEAR I was a little peeved. We decided we didn't care and we're wearing our new shirts on Tuesday for honey BBQ ribs.
- Choices, choices and more choices. Next year's menu is gonna include not only a hot lunch and two alternatives but will also give students a choice between a hot vegetable and a cold one. I truly can't imagine having to ask a five year old, "Would you like the cheeseburger, the turkey sandwich or the peanut butter and jelly. Now do you want green beans or a salad or chilled peaches or fruit juice. Pick two." KILL ME NOW.
- Taco salad vs. Chef salad. These two items fought it out on the menu this week. Taco salad edged out the Chef salad and it was great to see all those little kids eating lettuce. Even if I'm convinced that most of them thought they ordered a taco.
- Boogers are not on the menu. We had a little boy just diggin for gold in the line this week. Thankfully his teacher stressed that booger pickin' shouldn't be done at school. The little boy behind him said, "I hope I never see that again." It was tooo funny.
- Milkmen deserve their reputation. I'm pretty sure the milkman asked me to run off with him today but I'm hoping that the entire thing was a miscommunication. By miscommunication, I mean I'm hoping he didn't really say, "Hop in the truck and I'll take you with me but I'm certain I'm getting a better deal than you are." (insert flirty tone and smile) Um...he could be my father although in his defense I do look hot in a hairnet!
Six and 1/2 days and only one more milk delivery to go.
What did you learn this week?
After much consideration, I realized that I would be significantly smarter if I didn't have so many useless song lyrics jammed into the recesses of my brain. I mean, for example, take this song.
This song reminds me of a guy I dated named Gary who had hair down to his ass and a skull tatooed on the left side of his chest. My dad seriously considered buying a gun when I brought Gary home for the holidays...LMAO at that. He, is by far, the polar opposite of my husband, I wonder if Gary is a doctor?
I bet you are all thinking the same thing. "I, too, could be a doctor. I just need to purge some useless music from my mind." There is only one problem with my flawless disertation, my friend knows just as many song lyrics as I do (maybe more).
In conclusion, I couldn't be prouder of her! Clearly, she has a lot more space in her brain than I do in mine. It's the only logical conclusion.
Our district is shuffling some teachers around. I hate when that happens. I made this bouquet for one of the teachers leaving our building. It has the handprints of all of her students made into flowers. I painted pawprints onto the vase. The tag said: we love you and we'll miss you.
Thanks for visiting. If you are posting a hump day craft let me know
|B and Me !|
- If you are coming to visit me to share some laughs and have some wine feel free to stop by; if you are coming to visit my house and are expecting it to be clean and in an orderly fashion then you should make an appointment.
- I do not eat red meat. I do not like it, Sam I am and I will not eat it. Not on a boat, not with a goat, I simply won't.
- I HATE wearing shoes. When not at work, I never have socks or shoes on. In the summer, I live barefoot.
- My BFF (pictured above) will listen to me drone on and on forever about anything. She will listen to me talk about all aspects of my life from laundry to my ineligibility to vote in the primary election due to my reluctance to select any major party.
- My sister is four years younger than me but most people don't suspect that.
- I love to make things for people.
- It hurts me deeply when people say stuff about me behind my back. I much prefer the direct approach although I still find that to be just as painful.
- I like brussel sprouts, but find chocolate cake hard to swallow.
- Peanut butter cups are the bestest!
- If I consider you to be my friend, there is little, to nothing, that I won't do for you.
I was just talking about the end of school, which is 12 and a half days away...thank God
Here's what I learned in the cafeteria this week.
- Muffins are better when they aren't all muffiny. We needed to make 200 muffins on a half day and between the three of us no one really wanted to do it so my boss decided to make them like a sheet cake. They turned out much better than, well, muffins.
- Third grade talent show. Turns out my dreams of dressing like ketchup while my co-workers dress up as mustard and a hot dog as we dance and lip sinc to the weird Al classic "Eat It" have been dashed. No one wants to do it even though it would be an instant You Tube classic.
- Hero day. I was feeling a little low on the parental love meter this week because as I have aleady shared with you my oldest daughter wrote this lovely_story_in-which-she-kills-off-her-mother and then out of the blue my youngest daughter invited me to hero day. Before you say "awwwwweeeee" you should know I didn't make the cut. Daddy is her hero. Love tank=empty.
- Video Staff Meetings. We had a video staff meeting to review our district's budgetary woes and to learn more about our district's vision statement. I learned that the Child Nutrition Department, of which I am an employee, is having a contest. The word contest indicates prizes. I can't wait to see what I win.
- Stubborn children make poor customers. We've had some frustrated customers this week. I learned how to serve soup over the top of our serving line so kids could go around a disruptive student and I learned how to serve students who may sneek in from behind. How many more days of school did I say we have?
- Protective Services. Our custodian, Mr. G, gets paged multiple times a day. "Mr. G., please contact the office. Mr. G., please contact the office.". I found out today that some of the kindergarten students have been wondering why he has to protect the office sooooo many times a day. How cute is that?
- Jet Dry & Eyeballs. They don't really mix. In fact, splashing jet dry all over your face and into your mouth is not recommended. Iching and burning will occur.
- Donuts and muffins and fruit We had a big breakfast for the kids today. They were allowed to bring 2 guests to breakfast and we had donuts and muffins and fruit...oh my. We served more than 300 kids and VIPs. However there are always a few breakfast kids that come without anyone...so needless to say I had a lot of donuts this morning. It was for a good cause. No one should eat breakfast alone, especially the day before the end of the world.
You are laughing, aren't you?
I know what you are thinking. Come on, now! NO ONE LOVES their boss.
On most days, my boss makes me laugh, makes me feel better about parenting, and refuses to fire me even when I'm trying to go home early.
Here are just a few reasons why you would want to be a lunch lady if you worked for S.
- My boss raised five daughters. Nothing my kids do hasn't already been done to her. She is a great sounding board when it comes to mother-daughter drama.
- She is generous to a fault. She gives her clothing to the school clothing drive, she buys gift cards for families that are struggling, she provides caps and gowns to students who can't otherwise afford them.
- She understands that I have a handicap when it comes to being able to stack items properly and often follows me around as I put dishes away and puts them away properly.
- She understands and appreciates my sarcasm.
- She is willing to give up her paid personal days to help a co-worker in need.
- She loves holiday napkins as much as the students do and pays for them out of her own money.
- My boss LOVES what she does and that makes it easy to work for her.
- She understands that I took this cafeteria job so I could still do things like go on field trips, paint faces on fun day and attend the 6th grade honor breakfast.
- She knows that no one is perfect and just shrugs it off when I miscount and make more than 30 extra lunches
- She is willing to have her hours cut and given to me so that we can continue to work together.
And even though I know this, I took a chance and made a scrapbook for a friend. She didn't know about it--it was a surprise. In fact, when I asked her for 100 of her favorite Disney photos, she didn't even flinch. She just said, "Sure." I thought that was a bit of a red flag. "Don't you want to know what I need them for?" I asked. "Nah," she said, "I'm sure whatever you do with them will be fantastic."
I'm happy to say that I had a lot of fun making this book and my friend LOVED it!
I've uploaded a slide show of the album for you to look at minus the faces of my friend and her family. I wasn't sure how she would feel about her family vacation photos floating around in cyberland.
So when my oldest daughter asked me if she could read me a story that she wrote, my heart swelled with pride. "Absolutely," I said, "I would love to hear it."
This is her story, word for word (minus the spelling errors):
I hate my horrible luck. Oh, you don't think my luck is bad? Well, why you don’t put your money where your mouth is and bet me. If I win, you have to keep reading this book and if you win you can put this down and walk away. Deal? Good. First off, my name. I hate my name! Why couldn't my parents pick a real name! Well first you should know I'm a girl, emphasis on girl. Okay, so you want to know my name now, right? Well, it’s Andy. Not Antoinette or anything, just Andy. And the bad luck doesn't stop there. My parents’ divorced last year and I got stuck with my mom. Now I know most of you girls out there are thinking "Wow. She thinks that bad luck." Well, you've never met my mom. She could easily make me do anything, which basically means signing me up for a whole bunch of sports and then telling me the day they start. Still don't think my life is worse than yours? Well the best/worst day of my life started out as the worst. Mom was taking me to a soccer practice that I didn't want to go to. Mom was coaching and I already pretended to be sick last week and I was out of new material. On the way, Mom was going on about how she wanted to know why I hated soccer so much and I said, "I've told you a million times that I hate sports! Mom, watch...."
When I woke up, everything around me was blurry and when my eyes focused it still wasn't pretty. In our conversation, if you will, mom must have not been focusing too well on the road because we had smashed head long into another car. From what I could see the other driver was slumped over on the wheel, a deflated air bag underneath him. Now was a time when I wished I had a cell phone or even a panic button but like I said luck hates me.
When I looked over at mom, I threw up. The windshield had broken on her and the wreckage wasn't pretty. I was pretty sure it was at least 7 p.m. when I woke up and I know mom was making us go to the field two hours early so I could get extra practice for the days I missed. Despite all the glass and blood I checked my mom's pulse. Nothing. I got out of the car and screamed. Mom never got herself a phone and now I had no way to call the paramedics. I was glad I didn't have to deal with mom anymore but then it dawned on me that I would be orphaned if I didn't find my dad. So I went and got my book bag out of the trunk and set off back to town.
To be continued....
Okay, I realize that this is a lengthy post and most of you probably didn't read that entire thing but SERIOUSLY! DID SHE JUST LEAVE HER DEAD MOTHER IN THE CAR AND WALK BACK TO TOWN?
Where is soccer practice? Why was no one else coming to practice? Wouldn't her teammates have noticed the accident? Are they on an abandoned road with no other traffic? Does my 12 year old really think that people just lay around in their smashed cars for hours and hours?
I realize that this is a work of fiction. My daughter's real name is not Andy and I lets be clear, I would never coach soccer but still those words..."I was glad I didn't have to deal with mom anymore" really smacked me in the face.
I'm proud to say that I refrained from critiquing her story and told her that it was very imaginative and that I was looking forward to seeing how her protagonist resolved her conflict.
But between you and I, I'm hoping she starts over.
Here are a few persnickety things that are pushing me to the edge.
- Consecutive days of rain. Just an FYI I would have jumped off the Ark to my death.
- Parents who bring their kids late to school on field trip day. If your kid has already missed the bus, you've essentially signed them up for ISS all day.
- Unreliable parental units who cancel their visits because of the weather.
- Tween children who don't want to shower or bathe.
- Vacuumed sealed jars that won't open no matter what you turn them with, bang them with or twist them with.
- Being in charge of taking out the garbage.
- Children being removed from their parents because they have stage four cancer. WTF?
- School board meetings that strategically place nonsense on their agenda in an effort to conceal the real meat of the meeting at the end.
- Any meeting that opens with an executive session. Note to boards that do this: Shame on you! Put the executive session at the end instead of making people wait 45 minutes to an hour for a 7 p.m. meeting to start.
- School Curriculum Fair Projects that aren't made by students. I know you signed the same "I won't do the work" paper that I did yet your student was able to make an eagle out of three pieces of newspaper, a clothes pin and Elmer's glue and it looks better than a taxidermyed specimen?
- And while we are on the subject of curriculum fairs, either do the work at school or do the work at home but don't have some students required to do it at school and some required to do it at home. That inconsistency upsets people.
|Not an actual lunch served by my cafeteria! NASTY|
Here's what I learned.
- Multiple grade level field trips The week started with a K-2 level field trip and the kids needed to eat a little early so they could all get on the bus. We bagged all of these lunches and had them ready for an 11:30 start time. We usually don't serve that many kids at once. It resembled feeding time at the zoo.
- Free breakfast. Our Taste it Tuesday event continues to be a HUGE success. Even without a reminder we served over 130 kids for breakfast. Keep in mind we only have 200 kids and there are only 2 of us (plus an aide) who work breakfast. A big shout out to our principal for helping serve and for allowing for extra time for the kiddos to eat.
- Grandparents can be gropey. We had grandparents day on Wednesday. We served over a hundred grandparents as well as all of our students. One grandfather was quite friendly. I was taking tickets and handing out water. This grandfather touched my face, patted my head and hugged me. He was so friendly one of the aides asked if he was my father.
- Fourth grade food is better. Our 3rd graders went to their new intermediate school for lunch one day this week. Some returned singing the praises of their wonderful lunches. I smiled and nodded and refrained from saying "Can't wait until you are eating there."
- Yogurt and fruit parfaits. These little cups of goodness should never be served in tall cups. They are too top heavy for our kids. I have never seen so much yogurt hitting the floor. It wasn't pretty.
- Blueberries and grapes. I have often expressed concern about our students lack of knowledge when it comes to basic foods. They often don't recognize pears and can't tell the difference between peas and green beans. Today I heard a 3rd grader ask another student "Did you get the big grapes or the baby grapes." Really?
I enjoy giving gifts. I like making things. Oldest likes to give gifts too.
My oldest daughter is in the sixth grade and still wants to give her teacher an end-of-the year present.
So we made these thank yous. I'm not entirely thrilled with the stitching, but I think that makes them even cuter.
The apple is a cut from the Doodlecharms cricut cartridge. It is an older cart, but still one of my favorites. The face stamp is from peachykeen stamps and if you haven't been to Kathy's site, you are missing out!
Oldest also wants to make something for all four of her lunchladies...it is hard for a lunchlady to say no to that. :-)
Are you working on anything for the end of the school year? Leave me a link so I can come over and see it.
Minute 1: 1977 I start kindergarten and immediately become a fashionista. Even now at first look you are wondering where you can get one of these hot jumpers.
Minute 2: 1980 I am given the worlds most romantic Valentine by a boy named Brett. It is made from a doily and I already blogged about how I feel about doilies. That being said, I still have the silly Valentine somewhere. It is red with a white doily and under one of the corners it says. "I think you are cool." It was third grade and that was quite a compliment.
Minute 3: 1981 I am bit by a chipmunk and become "The girl who isn't afraid to pick up a chipmunk." I quickly learned that an injured chipmunk will actually lock it's jaw onto your hand and no matter how you try to prepare your mom of the shock of having a chipmunk attached your hand you will not be successful.
Minute 4: 1983 While climbing up a playground slide at a ballpark, my sister decided to go down the slide. This caused "The Incident" that we still refer to at parties and resulted in me getting 12 stitches in my chin. The best part of "The Incident" was that my mom was not at the ballpark and my dad was umpiring behind home plate.
Minute 5: 1984 I recieve an award for the "Worst Junior High HairDo" and "Largest Glasses Ever Seen."
Minute 6: 1984 I am tortured relentlessly because of the commercial created by my namesake resturaunt. Instead of "Where's the Beef" the halls ring out "Where's the boobs."
Minute 8: 1986 High school begins and thus starts my four year career as class clown. Voted most likely to make someone laugh. It was probably my hair.
Minute 9: 1986 I become the person who became intimately involved with the bus driver
Minute 10: 1987 I become the most popular kid in high school for a nano second after cutting the hair of the most annoying person in the building. In my defense, I warned her. I told her if she flung it in my face one more time I was cutting it off. I had no other choice. The principal did not side with me and I spent the next three days in ISS.
Minute : 1989 I become the 1000th person asked to leave Mrs. Yocka's typing class for "Attire Unbecoming a Secretary" For the life of me I cannot remember what I was wearing.
Minute 10: 1990 I become the only person in the high school to spend more time in the art room than any other room in the building.
- My therapist will likely want me to talk about any unresolved issues I have with my mother. My girlfriends already know them.
- My therapist might frown on going away on Mother's Day weekend...my friends couldn't wait.
- My therapist only offers water to drink and I like wine.
- My therapist has a windowless office and the beach house has, well, the ocean.
- My therapist likes carpeting and I like sand.
- My therapist has never made anyone laugh but my sister makes everyone laugh.
- My therapist never plays good music, only dry office music. Nothing like "All I want to do is make love to you"...and "Does he love you.
- My therapist never lets me vacumme the bugs off the ceiling.
- My therapist has no appreciation for the royal wedding, unlike the fondness my girlfriends share.
- My therapist has never offers me ice cream cake.
The view from the deck
My friend, R., with her wine glass.
Here's what I learned.
- Peaches piss me off. My co-worker was scooping peaches into cups and I told her I was going to punch her for some reason (I tell her that a lot, but that's another blog post) and she decided to defend herself by WIPING PEACHES ONTO MY FACE. I am letting her wonder if I am mad at her or not.
- PBJ doesn't make a good Popsicle. All day Thursday I kept saying "We're forgetting to do something" but we couldn't figure out what we were forgetting until the first wave of lunch came in we had no PBJ to serve. The uncrustables were all still frozen. UGH. We had to quickly put them in the warmer and that didn't really help.
- Ice Cold Milk. Is good...unless it's a slushy and you just dumped it onto your cereal.
- MEAT? We served tacos this week and the kids all got a 2 oz cup of meat and a 2 oz cup of cheese. A kindergartner said, "Is this some kind of meat?" while starting at the one cup. It was hard for me to answer "yes".
- Feeling Appreciated. One of the teachers at PTO this week said she wasn't feeling very appreciated so during our Taste It Tuesday breakfast when nearly the entire school was there I told all the kids that I would give them a sticker at lunch if they hugged their teacher and told them that they appreciated all they do.
Oh high school...how I hate thee.
Regular readers will recall that I met my husband while working at Burger King when we were both 17. I worked in a lot of fast food joints throughout high school and for a short period after high school. But I would have to say my most memorable job was as a housekeeper at the Comfort Inn.
Here are just a few things that happened to me while working as a housekeeper. WARNING: reading anything further will make you consider never staying in a hotel again.
SKIN One time I stumbled upon what I thought was a room covered in baby powder. Nope. SKIN. Tons and tons of nasty dry skin. We needed to call for backup.
FERRETS. The hotel I worked at allowed pets and if the room was occupied by a pet it was indicated on our room chart. Unless they were there illegally. These ferrets were illegal and I opened the door and let them all loose on the 4th floor. We needed to call for backup.
DEEP SLEEPERS. Some people can sleep through anything including to maids cleaning their bathroom and laughing loudly when they go to strip the bed and find someone still in it. We did not call for backup...we just ran.
BIBLE TROUBLE. In my lifetime I have throw away more than one Bible. The things people will do to them is beyond disgusting. I found gum smashed in them, writting all through them and more than once I found a used condom smashed in the middle of Psalms.
Being a housekeeper/maid is labor intensive. It is back breaking work, often disgusting and thankless.
When you stay at a hotel....TIP THE MAID!
The have a pack of Extra gum inside of them. They are super simple to make. Just wrap the gum up in card stock, add a belly band and embellish. On the front I stamped Moo-chas Grass-ias
On the back is a label that says Thank you for all the "extra" things you do that often go unnoticed.
Have you made any creative teacher crafts? Leave me a comment and/or a link and tell me about them.
I'm sure you are wondering why you didn't get the memo.
Here's the scoop. Our food service director wants to get our meal participation numbers up and seeing as we have little more than 25 days of school left she came up with the idea of allowing all students to have free breakfast every Tuesday during the month of May.
Let me explain the reasoning behind it. As with everything that our government is in charge of, this may make limited sense. But in a nutshell, or maybe I should say eggshell, the more kids that eat school breakfast and/or lunch, the more money our school gets.
It has something to do with untapped federal dollars and other random "governmenty" things.
The thought behind Taste It Tuesday (which I'm proud to say I cleverly named) is the kids will love school breakfast so much that they will want to come again.
I don't know if it will work, but what the heck, I'm up for an adventure.
Today was the first of five and out of 206 students we served nearly 150 for breakfast. Keep in mind that breakfast is usually served from 8:20 to 8:35 every morning. That's not a lot of time to get through the line and actually eat.
Thankfully, our principal allotted some extra time and surprisingly we handled things quite well. Some of the kindergartners were a little overwhelmed having never come to breakfast before but all in all everyone did very well.
I will say this--next Monday night I'm going to get more sleep.
Seriously? Was this another one of Michelle Obama's idea? I'm thinking I may have to write her an open letter.
She's starting to get on my nerves. First she wants me to serve kale next year to K-3rd graders and now two minutes of jumping jacks? What's next? No french fries? ***gasp***
Here's the concept. All the kids in the county will gather at their perspective schools and starting at 10 p.m. they will do jumping jacks for 2 whole minutes.
Do you remember being seven years old?
I do. I was filled with endless energy. I remember playing outside all day long. I remember dancing under the sprinkler until my lips turned blue. I remember riding my bike all the way to the top of the hill we lived on just so I could ride it down and do it again. We played run down, kick the can and tag.
This post is starting to sound like a country song.
So when the baseball player directing our elementary student in the jump jack party said, "This will work best if we do this in 30 second increments." I thought. Is he serious? These kids can jump for thirty minutes! They aren't even 10! They got this!
Mind you, I was hiding in the cafeteria "pretending" to work so I didn't have to jump. There are a few things I don't do since having three vaginal births and jumping jacks in public is one of them. I don't jump on trampolines either but that's another post.
On your mark...get set...go. The timer starts. And I watched from the cafeteria as all of the students in our building begin to jump. The jumping jacks weren't pretty but they were jumping and moving their arms.
The timer beeped and those kids fell out. FELL. OUT. 30 seconds and there was panting and breathing hard and doing A LOT of whining. But in their defense, they did it again. And again. And again.
It wasn't pretty but it was persistent.
I guess that letter to Michelle won't be necessary. Come to think of it maybe we should lay off the fries.
- I'm a 41 year old (gasp) freelance writer, school cafeteria manager, wife and mother. I have three children and one anxious and overweight beagle. I use my blog to make others laugh, to share some cool crafts, to document my lunchlady adventures and to lament about the challenges faced by us all on the journey called life. Thanks for visiting. Please leave some crack...um...I meant some comments.