Friday, May 30, 2008

Wii Had Fun

Here are some funny pics of us playing the Wii last night. I will admit that at first I didn't want the system, but after messing around with it last night I am hooked. I'm gonna have to go home and practice my baseball swing so that I can beat Ayron in our tournament tonight.


Wow, I am realizing more and more that people can be mean. I rather harsh comment was left on my "Joined the Bandwagon" post (I deleted it already) about making my Mii as fat as I really am.

While I understand and acknowledge my size and that I could stand to lose a few pounds may I remind you that I just had a child, I did lose 30 pounds with the pregnancy and I walk about 2 miles a day.

If you are going to write a comment, buck up and put your name. Why are you trying to hide? What are you afraid of? You can say all of these mean harsh things but you are a chicken because you won't acknowledge who you are.

Are you afraid that I will personally attack you? Grow up. I'm 24 years old and I have better things to do with my time. You may consider this blog an "attack" but it's not personal and heck, it's MY blog. So own up. Either leave your name or just leave.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Joined the Bandwagon

Well, we did it. We bought a Wii last night. We have been casually looking for one and decided if we ever ran across one we'd buy it.

As we were walking into Wal-Mart last night to buy a teething ring (yes, Taylor is teething at 9 weeks) Ayron said, "If they have a Wii, can I buy it?" I told him, "Yep" thinking that Wal-Mart never has them in stock and I would be safe. WRONG. I went to the baby aisle and ran into my ex and his wife. They have a baby boy and we were talking about life and how everything was going. I thought it was odd that Ayron hadn't come and find me. I walked to the electronics department to see Ayron with a big grin on his face.

In order to buy the Wii, we had to purchase an accessory. We bought an extra remote. This morning I had to return some things to Meijer so I browsed through the Wii accessories and bought a second numb chuck and controller covers. I can't wait to get home and make "Miis."

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

God, is that you?

I'll admit that my prayer life leaves something to be desired. I am doing better now (thanks to using drawing as a form of prayer) but I still find myself doing the typical, "Be with person A. Help person B. Thank you for X,Y,Z." Having a child does help with the appreciative prayers.

I've never really "heard" God. Maybe He is screaming at me and I'm deaf. Maybe he has given me a million signs but I am blind. Maybe I never truly called out for Him to send me a sign. Maybe I did see/hear Him and just don't know it.

Pastor Stein spoke this past weekend at church and the sermon got me. Now that I think about it, maybe that was His was of sending me a sign.....anyways. Ayron and I got to thinking, "What is our eagle?" Pastor Stein's sign was so clear and heard so I guess I'm waiting for God to send me an email or text message that says, "here's your sign." But I know that it probably (He's God, He'll do it however He wants to) won't happen.

After a long weekend, we think we found our "eagle" and Ayron is so sure, but I think that what we found was his "eagle" and not mine. So I guess what I am asking for is how will I know?

I'll tell you now that the whole, "You'll just know" answer will not suffice. I want personal stories. How did He speak to you? What could/should I be looking for? How do I make certain that I am doing what He wants? What if my "eagle" isn't something I enjoy? I know that I will need to do it, but how can I do it with a song in my heart if I am not happy? It would be easier if God sent text messages.

Why Didn't I Stand

Three weeks ago Pastor Diehl felt the need to pray over the physically hurting in our church. During the Saturday night service he asked those who were dealing with physical pain to raise their hands (and eventually stand up). I sat still. Ayron gave me a look, yet my butt stayed on the seat. I had been dealing with severe back issues. Cramps that dropped me to the floor and prevented me from using my arms, yet there I sat. The pastor prayed over the hurting and I said my own little "help me feel better" prayer, yet I didn't acknowledge that I was in physical pain.

I am still in physical pain. Not nearly as much as then, but I still have my episodes. I've tried stretches and sleeping positions, etc. Some mornings I wake up in pain, other days I go to bed in pain. I'm sure sitting on the bleachers at the Indy 500 didn't help. I keep wondering, had I stood up would I still be in pain?

Why didn't I stand up? I honestly don't know. I guess I figured that others were hurting or had far worse problems than my back pain. Was it a vain attempt at modesty? I've never been a "look at me" person and it does take me some time to admit that I need help so maybe that's why I didn't stand. Was I embarrassed to admit I needed prayer? I don't think that was the reason.

So I'm "standing" now and asking for prayer. I should have done it three weeks ago with pastor asked, but better late than never right?

My Boys

I woke up this morning and came into the living room to find my three boys!Ayron got up at 6:30 because Taylor was fussy. I guess while warming up a bottle Taylor fell back asleep so Ayron decided to crash on the couch.

Indy 500

Ayron and I were lucky enough to attend the Indy 500. This was my first time and Ayron's second. Thanks to Josh and Kelly for taking us!

It was cool to feel the power of the cars going around the track. You could feel it in your chest and the breeze the cars made was a nice way to cool off in the sun! I must say that I did learn some things while on the trip.

1.) Drunk frat boys are more annoying at the Indy 500 than they are on campus.
2.) Danika could have kicked that guys butt if track security would have let her!
3.) High school swim team running concession stand = free food because they never came and
took our money.
4.) Crawling under a fence could get you arrested. "The cops will be here in five minutes."
5.) Parking in some guys back yard turned out to be a very good parking spot.
6.) Josh can fit in our trunk (picture to come soon)
7.) It's amazing what can be said and misconstrued while stuck in traffic.
8.) Never tick Josh off and then use a port-a-potty. He knows how to get revenge if need be.

The drive down was easy, it was the drive home that took awhile. It actually wasn't that bad getting away from the track. But I-69 was really slow for no reason. It was fun to make fun of the motorcycle people ahead of us. After a day in the sun people can say some silly things. Then again, a lot of silly things were said before we even got to the track.

1.) Wanna lick my suction cups? (referring to the window shade we have for Taylor that never
stays up.
2.) Nothing like putting on a Darth Vader mask and prancing around the football field.
3.) Up to the lake (you had to be there.)
4.) I was reading in Cosmo......(funny because Ayron said it so matter of factly)

I'm sure they'd be funnier had you been in the car with us. Here are some pictures and more to come.

Should Have Gotten It On Video

Saturday night after church we had some people over to our house to eat and hang out. Towards the end of the evening I ran back to my moms house to pick up her puppy (she was out of town and Stella was sleeping at our house). When I pulled in the drive way I heard Adam Diehl laughing. I brushed it off until I walked into the house.

Adam was sitting on the floor holding Scooter's (our dog) shock collar telling Ayron, "Do it again!" Yes, I left three boys (Ayron, Adam and Paul) alone for 10 minutes and they get the brilliant idea to shock each other using a dog training collar. They tried holding it and strapping it to their ankle. I will say that I never saw Paul asking to be shocked. My husband willingly demonstrated to Adam how he shocks himself. Adam tried to through his sock, but couldn't feel anything, so he put it on his bare ankle.

I wish that I would have thought to turn on the video camera to capture their moments of stupidity but I was in awe that a college educated person would willingly shock themselves. Guess I really don't understand guys.

Oh, PS ladies, Adam is available. If you'd like, I could write his number on a napkin for you ;)

Friday, May 23, 2008


This weekend I am doing something I've never done before. I am going to view the Indy 500 first hand. Thanks to Kelly's connections through work we have free tickets. I will admit that I'm not a big race fan (the crashes are cool) but I think that being from Indiana I should be able to say that I've seen the race in person.

This does mean us leaving Tater at home with Uncle Phil and Aunt Nikki. I can't imagine taking a 2 month old with us to the race! Hopefully it is pleasantly warm and the weather is nice. A nice tan would be cool, but I don't want to look like a lobster when I get home.

I'm sure that the car ride down will bring on the story telling that occurs when Josh and Ayron are together. Ayron usually pulls the "remember when "card and then the two can't stop reminiscing about all the stupid things they have done together. Although every time they get together I do hear at least one new story from their past. Their stories usually just add to my proof that I don't want my child to go to Eastside or that our children (when they have some) will not be allowed to play together unless in a well padded room without sharp edged toys!

Hopefully I'll have some cool pictures to post when I return to work on Tuesday. Yeah, only 8 more days of "school" left then I can do my summer job as a corrections officer at the other office.

News By The Numbers

Yes, I stole the title from The Daily Buzz but I'm brain dead and couldn't come up with one on my own.

Today's number is 24. Taylor is now 24 inches (that's two feet for all of you mathmatically impaired blog readers) long. Gee, only 57 more inches until he matches Ayron's height!

He now weighs 12lbs. 5 oz. He's a growing boy!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Please Pray (Part Two)

My student was found safe and sound yesterday. While she is not happy to be back at school, we (my staff and the other students) are happy that she is back and safe.

Can You Hear Me Now?

Ayron and I switched to Verizon Wireless yesterday and couldn't be happier. Don't panic, our numbers are the same. We are paying $20 less and getting a ton more with our plan. Thanks to our free unlimited texting and pixing (is that the right word?) I'm sure everyone will be getting plenty of Tater Monkey (Taylor) pictures! Now I just have to figure out how to use all of the features on my new phone!

The coolest thing is that the phone flips open and has a full key board. Hehe, my texting habit has just been enabled!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Please Pray

I work with troubled youth. I currently have a female student, 16 years old, who is missing. She hasn't been seen by her family since Friday or by anyone since Sunday. She is believed to be with a 29 year old registered sex offender. She has emotional issues and has been known to act without thinking. Please pray that her better judgement kicks in and she comes home safe and sound.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Technology Intellegent I Am Not

Ok, so I've had my work phone for a little over a year now. It is a Motorola V361 with a memory chip. I have taken several pictures and knew that I could transfer them to the computer but I jsut now took the time to figure it out. I took out the little tiny chip and put it inside the bigger memory card chip and then plugged that into my memory card reader. Then I plugged that into the back of my computer and "ta da" I figured it out!

Switching Cell Phone Plans

Ayron and I are thinking of switching cell phone providers. We are currently with Centennial and have been for 7 years. We have started to do some comparison shopping and discovered that we are basically "being screwed" by centennial. They claim there is not a smaller/less expensive plan. We are tired of getting the run around so we have started looking into Verizon.

Anyone with Verizon have any complaints? We talked to one friend and he really likes Verizon and told us how to get some "free stuff" by setting up an on line account. I just want to get as many opinions as possible before we switch.

We do plan on keeping our same numbers so that is another question I have. I am sure the Verizon people know how to do it, but I was curious if we have to do. Is there any leg work?

Funny Tater Pictures

Tater and our latest asparagas crop from our garden. We took this picture to send to the previous owner. She is now in a residential living facility and never actually got to taste the asparagas she planted. We are going to send her this picture along with some asparagas from our next harvest.

Taylor sleeping through his baby shower. He woke up once for all of 5 minutes during the whole party.

Don't be alarmed. No Southern Comfort was drank during the taking of this picture. It was taken to amuse Dawn and myself after a hard day at work.

Yet another picture taken to amuse Dawn and myself on a Friday afternoon.

Grandma Reese is hiding behind Taylor's head!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Just My Thoughts

In my line of work I deal with offenders, mainly juvenile, but adults too. To be in our programs they have to pay a fee. My program fee is minimal, home detention can be costly. I can't stand to hear people complain about paying their user fees. Come on now people. Had you not committed a crime, you wouldn't have to pay the fee of being on our program. If you don't want to pay the fee, fine, we can send you back to jail and you can serve the rest of your sentence there.

What really gets me is how I can watch people chain smoke outside of our office and then go in and complain that they don't have any money to pay their fees. I understand that the cost of everything these days is increasing, but in the five minutes you stood outside our office you burnt up $5.

Being a non-smoker (I'm proud to say I've never even had the urge nor have I ever given into peer pressure to "try one.") I have no clue how much a pack of cigarettes costs. But it seems funny that people that smoke three packs a day and then blow the rest of their money on alcohol (they can't drink on our programs so I'm just generalizing the public) have NO right to complain about lack of money. Get your priorities straight people.

I had a juvenile go to court yesterday because they were caught up town smoking. They were sure they were going to get sent away. I reassured them that they won't, but they will be given a hefty fee. She freaked out when I said she could get a $500 fine. My response, "You shouldn't have been smoking in the first place."

I know why I feel so strongly about smoking and I try not to push my feelings onto others. I watched my grandmother die of lung cancer because she smoked since who knows when. I've seen my dad pick back up the habit and how it has affected his health. When someone asks me my opinion on smoking I tell them one thing but I warn them before I say it. It's not a sugar coated opinion. I don't sugar coat.

I look them straight in the eye and say: If you are so intent on killing yourself, you can do it for a lot cheaper. All you need is a barn and some rope.

I don't intend to be mean, but in my eyes, if you choose to smoke you are slowly committing a very expensive suicide.

Ok, tangent done.

Friday, May 09, 2008


"How can you say 'No child's left behind"? We're not dumb and we're not blind."
- Dear Mr. President by Pink
That song lyric is ringing in my ears. There are several views on the whole No Child Left Behind Act and while I am not completely set in my opinion I do have very strong emotions about the whole thing.
I see NCLB (No Child Left Behind) fail on a daily basis. Well, let me rephrase that. I see schools struggle to make NCLB work, but fail. In a large district it will happen. Lets me honest with ourselves. School funding sucks! There are so many guidelines, restrictions, and benchmarks put on teachers, yet they aren't given the resources they need to achieve what is expected of them. Let's not get into the pay issue except to say that teachers are not paid what they deserve (I don't feel this way just because I am a teacher, keep in mind I am not in a public school). So we underpay the people we expect the most out of .
I enrolled two 6th grade students last night that the system has failed. The one student will be just fine, but the other the system has failed over and over again. After reading his history (the school gave me a multi-page document) I am amazed that this child has made it as far as they have. Granted, the student has a MAJOR attitude, but after being blown off so many times, who wouldn't? I'm wondering if in a perfect world where NCLB worked would this child have gotten to the point they are at now? How can we really ensure that no child is left behind? Even if money wasn't an issue, could we still help every child? It's sad to say, but I don't think we could. Students these days deal with so much crap outside of school that no wonder they come to school with an attitude. How many students these days come from broken homes or home where the parents are in the system? They haven't been given a fair chance since day one.
I have a student now that has been written off because he is the youngest in a string of family members to be in the system. He is not a bad kid and with some guidance (I like to think we are providing that here) will be just fine. Unfortunately as soon as a teacher figured out who his brothers are, he is labeled as "one of them" from the start. That student will never be given a fair chance and it's not his fault.
Maybe my view is skewed because these are the cases I deal with on a daily basis. If I were in a public school would I notice this?

Thursday, May 08, 2008

A Moment Alone

I have a rare moment alone this morning. I am at work and enjoying the peace and quiet of my office. At the present moment there are no screaming/quarreling students, no police sirens, no dogs barking, no babies crying, but there is a lawn mower somewhere in the distance. These alone moments are few and far between. They allow me the chance to think about how life has changed in the past two months. The obvious changes and the not so obvious changes.

I still find it hard to believe that I am a parent. I look at my child in awe knowing that Ayron and I created him with His help of course. I am reminded of the seemingly long road we took to conceive and I am reminded that others are still on that road. My heart aches for them. I want them to know/experience the feelings/emotions I do every time I look at Taylor. I pray for their success (funny way of putting it) but also pray that His timing be done.

Ayron and I have grown closer through these past weeks. It does take a village (or at least a very willing extended family) to raise a child. My heart goes out to all the single parents. I don't know how you did/do it. You are amazing to me. Ayron and I are pretty good about taking turns when it comes to getting up at night or washing/filling the bottles. It is fun to sit and watch Ayron play with Taylor. The other night I caught a rare glimpse of my mother-in-law and I smiled. We were at Pizza Hut and Ayron was feeding Taylor while sitting across the table from his mom. Ayron was babbling to Taylor and I caught Jo watching her son feed his son. I could see the pride ooze from her.

Our families have grown as well. It's not a secret that in the past Jo and I didn't exactly see eye to eye. While never verbally had it out, those issues are resolved now and I am grateful for her help. It is funny to watch Ayron's brother (the big tough firefighter) melt when he sees Taylor. Or to walk into the living room and see Uncle Phil asleep in the recliner with Taylor curled up like a turtle on his chest. My parents can now be in the same room without either one of them tearing up over the bitter past. They can sit and watch each other in awe while holding their grandchild.

The power of a baby is amazing. They can turn the grumpiest old man into a babbling fool. They can soften the heart of a hardened woman. They can help clear the mind of the confused. I have taken Taylor to mom's work (a senior living facility) and seen all of this. They can make you think about the awesome power of our Lord.

Just thinking about what it takes to bring a child into this world. It's amazing how one sperm and on egg can create a human. It only takes nine months for that one celled baby to grow and enter this world. I don't know who people can think about that process or look at a baby and not believe in God. His power and ability leave me dumbstruck.

Ok, I'm done rambling for now. It's amazing how when I was home for 6 weeks without easily accessible Internet I thought of several thought provoking blog topics, but now that I'm back at work and have the Internet at my fingertips I forget them all.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


I was a Clay Aiken fan. Call me a nerd, but you won't be the first. I liked his voice, to me his looks had nothing to do with it. I'm not a person that focuses on looks. If the music is good and the singer can sing, count me in.

Since his days on AI, he has undergone many changes and the following link discusses the most recent image change by Clay.

I agree with the writer. It looks more like a freaky playbill shot for some production about an evil opera killer (think Phantom). It doesn't make me like his music any less because he still sounds the same. His many image makeovers got me thinking.

How much does image influence a singer's likability? How many "ugly" singers can you think of? I'm sure some smart Alec will come up with someone, but overall, most of them are fairly decent looking people. Could someone who has a not so perfect body be a famous and well liked singer? Is our culture so obsessed with looks that only the really skinny blue eyed blondes get recording contracts? We must look like conceited fools to the rest of the world. I'd love to see a music video that features a normal person (acne and bad hair included) dressed normally (no underwear hanging out, no cleavage falling out of a top) singing well.

Giving It Up

At work I was superwoman. I did it all. I didn't need to do it all, but I did. Needless to say I got burnt out. Maternity leave allowed me to see that. I was forced to give up control and forced to deligate duties. I wasn't good at it, but it got done and all went well while I was gone.

Now that I'm back I feel out of place. I have given up my "martyr" status and am allowing those around me to help. They are helping so much that I don't really have anything left to do. I did some catch up things, but my daily tasks are taken care of. Heck, they've even created a more systematic way of doing my daily tasks. It's odd to not feel like I have to do it all or nothing will run smoothly. I'm realizing that I must trust my staff and allow them to make mistakes. I guess I was fearful that if mistakes were made I would be to blame. I am learning that is no longer the case.

With this program we kind of make up the rules as we go. Each student/case is different and needs to be handled differently. A hard set of rules doesn't really work here and I must be willing to forget that notion. While a set of basic rules is in place and followed, there are so many situations that each case must be tailored. I used to spend my days tailor and handling each case, planning each curriculum, teaching, grading, recording and reporting. Now it looks like my staff has it all figured out (except the court reports which is fine by me).

So what do I do? My days are no longer filled with running between offices like a chicken with it's head cut off. I am finding time to do those "little things" that are always at the bottom of my "to do" list but never get done. Case and point, I'm going to go clean out both fridges. Who knows what I'll find in there....I'm afraid.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Tater Update

Just and update for the family that reads this incredibly interesting blog (said sarcastically).

Taylor, aka Tater Monkey, is doing just fine. He is peacefully sleeping in my lap as I type. He will come to work with me three days a week (until someone tells me otherwise) since there is only 5 weeks of school left. It's nice to have him with me, but then again, typing one handed can be tricky.

He currently weighs roughly 11 pounds and who knows how long he is. At birth he was 21 1/2 inches long. At his one week check up they said he was 23 inches long. When they measured him during his one month appointment he was 22 inches...hhmmm.....He is just plain long I can tell you that.

He already holds his head up and can roll himself when he really wants something. He is claustrophobic and doesn't like it when Scooter licks his toes. He does like to look at Scooter and goats. He has finally stopped peeling. He still has a full head of hair but his eyes haven't decided what color they'll be yet. He snores like a bear and can fart like his father.

We are adjusting to life with a child and enjoy our new parenthood but are not in any hurry to have another one.

Back to the daily grind

Well, I'm back at work. I thought being home for six weeks would drive me crazy, and at first it did, but it grew on me.

I liked being able to get the laundry, dishes, cleaning, etc done during the day so that I could relax and hang out with Ayron. Our schedule gets so hectic in the summer and it will be crazy trying to plan and stay ahead while toting around a baby.

Don't get me wrong or think that I'm naive. I knew things were going to change and the changes have all been for the better, it just takes some getting used to.

I am already taking tomorrow off of work though. I have a doctor's appointment and there is no point in driving up to work to do something I can do from home.

If only we would win the lottery and I could stay at home full time....too bad we don't play the lottery.

I'm Back...

FYI...I'm back!!

After 6 weeks of maternity leave I am back at work. I feel like I am about of the loop, but back at it.