Sunday, May 22, 2011

Sundays in My City - Ruff!

"Bark in the Park" is a fundraising event sponsored by our local Humane Society. The 19th annual Bark in the Park dog festival was held yesterday in Forest Park. Sponsored by the Humane Society of Missouri and Purina, it is a benefit for the Humane Society of Missouri Animal Cruelty Fund, dedicated to the investigation and prevention of animal abuse. Dog lovers from all over show up in costume, with props or in their birthday suits! (The dogs show up in their birthday suits, not the owners!)

It's a day of exercise and fun for both owners and dogs and is a win-win situation for everyone. There are exhibits, talent shows, and some "impromptu" dancing.

We don't take Tootsie to this one... She just can't "get along" with others.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope your Sunday is great!

Please stop by Unknown Mami's Sundays in My City and see some fascinating places to visit! Just click on the logo below!

Unknown Mami

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Saturday Centus - Scared to Change

Welcome to Saturday Centus, the "assignment on a whim" by Jenny Matlock Off on My Tangent. I shouldn't tease. Ms. Jenny graciously gives writers ideas and formats through weekly writing challenges, and it's always interesting to see how we respond! We must write no more than 100 words (not including the prompt or idea) and link back to Ms. Jenny to share with others our hard work and sweat. My sweat follows, the prompt is in bold.

Bring it on baby, dear
That attitude of yours
It’s a cover for your fear
Of breaking down doors

You want to be me
Go ahead and try
Open your eyes and see
It’s not a good time to fly

You’re full of yourself, hon
Step back and to the side
Let others bask in the sun
Be humble with your pride

Close your eyes; breathe a sigh
How can you change?
Start climbing; aim for high
You might feel scared or strange

When it’s the end of day
And the wind is a wickin’
Say, “I’m not afraid,” say
I’m not a chicken!”

Thanks for the visit! Please hop on over to Jenny's and enjoy other gift poets like myself (NOT). Just click on the logo below.

Jenny Matlock

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

My Little Miss Sunshine

I work at a middle school. A week or so ago, it snowed on a Monday. The Sunday night prior, the transportation department said that since we were only expecting a dusting, they were going to watch before salting the streets. It started snowing Sunday night. The next morning, snow was a very messy, slushy snow...four inches of messy slushy snow. The bus drivers couldn't get to work, so there were no buses to pick up the kids. Still, parents sent their little cherubims out to the bus stops. Some of those parents went on to work; others acted surprised when their children returned home one-half hour later as Popsicles. I made it into work, but only one other out of six office staff made it in. I took the front desk. From 7:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m., we received around 300 telephone calls (many of which went to voicemail). By the fifth call, I had the spiel down.

I said in my most pleasant voice, "I'm very sorry that your bus did not show up. Unfortunately, the drivers couldn't make it out of their neighborhoods to go to work. If you have an alternate method of transportation for your child, we would very much appreciate your use of it. No, I am very sorry, there are no buses running this morning. Please don't worry about the tardy. Everyone who is tardy will be excused today because of the transportation problem. I understand...if you have no other means to get your child here, then I guess you should keep them home."

During the first 15 minutes of telephone calls, our intruder alarm went off. All of the students who had made it in to school were directed to the cafeteria and gymnasium for lockdown. The local police were called and all halls and classrooms were swept. It was determined that a malfunction set off the alarm. The next 30 calls were from parents who just received a text from their child that there was an intruder at the school.

My response was "I do appreciate your concern, sir/madam, but the alarm went off as a result of an electrical malfunction. The school has been swept by our administrators and the local police, and no intruder was found. Please be assured that everyone here at the school is safe." I became an expert at this spiel, as well, and could recite it within 25 seconds. This gave me time to answer more telephone calls. The phone lines finally ceased ringing all at once, and we all heaved a sigh of relief!

About an hour later, I received a call from Ed. She was very excited and began speaking as soon as she knew I was on the other end of the line. She said,

"So, this is the stuff that went down today! Katya and Tabitha started driving to school, but since the Ghia is so low to the ground, it got stuck in the snow. So they turned around and came back home. They were crying because they were going to be late. I told them you would let them stay home since there was no bus and Katya's car couldn't get through the snow. That's okay, isn't it? Then, Katya made a doctor's appointment and needed a ride to the office. So, the three of us got into the VW Bus and I started it up. When Katya went to close the side door, it fell off! It was hanging by a single bolt! Man, Dad is going to be so p..... mad! Anyway, we closed it as much as we could and both Tabitha and Katya rolled down the windows and put their arms through so they could hold the door shut. They kept crying and complained that it was cold. Then when I turned left to go into the doctor's parking lot, the door started to fall again and they both screamed! After the longest time at the doctor's, we finally came home and are going to stay in the house for the rest of the day. Can I stay home from school, too?"

Welcome to my world! Thanks so much for stopping by!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Charlie Sheen - The Bad Boy We Love!

Welcome to this always fascinating meme sponsored by Wednesday Wickedness. Each week, Janera Jepson posts quotes from a well-known celebrity, and then poses questions to the reader following the quotes. This week's meme posts quotes from a guy we both love and love to hate, Charlie Sheen. He has had an incredible movie and television career, and is now walking a fine line to losing more than just his career. Charlie's quotes are numbered, the questions that follow are in italic, and my feeble attempt at answers are in bold.

1. As kids we're not taught how to deal with success; we're taught how to deal with failure. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. If at first you succeed, then what? What is something in which that you did not expect to succeed, but ultimately you were successful?

Charlie, I can't imagine how stressful it is to be successful in the entertainment business. But I think that you need to find another way to work out the stress!

A successful endeavor - editing College Physics, not really! Actually, writing is something I never thought much about, until a teacher asked me to write a letter of recommendation for her. The positive feedback I received was so encouraging. I don't know if I could consider myself a successful writer as I have never had anything published...yet. I feel successful if my writing touches another and they take the time to let me know. Their responses make my day!

2. Dad kept us out of school, but school comes and goes. Family is forever.
What do you think about home schooling?

Working at a public school and watching home school children come into our school, I don't think the education is any better, or worse. What makes me sad is the social experience on which home schooled kids miss out. They are not as equipped to handle conflict, relationships, and in some cases, authority figures, as well as the students who have been in classrooms, either public or private. This is just my opinion.

Yes, Charlie, I agree with you that Family is forever. However, family cannot provide you with many of the experiences that occur outside of the family unit.

3. I just didn't believe I was like everybody else. I thought I was unique.
What makes you unique?

Unfortunately, I do not think I am that unique. I am a 30-something woman living inside the body of a 50-something woman. I love most of the music that my teens listen to, and I sometimes dance with them (after which I soak in a very hot bath!) Aren't most women my age like this?

4. I just don't want to live like I used to. And at some point, I'm going to put a gag order on myself in terms of talking about the past. I've got to slam the door and deal with the present and the future. When you meet someone, how much of your past do you reveal?

I reveal nothing of my past until I have lassoed them in and tied them to the hitching post. Then, I only reveal bits and pieces at a time. If they knew all of the real me, they would ride off into the sunset immediately! Sorry, Charlie, but you are in a position where you cannot hide your past. They know all about your life before you even say "hello!"

5. I saw 28 Days. I don't remember rehab being like a day camp or being that funny. Rehab is a dumping ground. It's a big landfill. Has rehab helped either you or a member of your family?

I couldn't say. None of my family has been in rehab...mental institutions, yes; rehab, no.

6. I still don't have all the answers. I'm more interested in what I can do next than what I did last. Do you dwell on your past?

Only the really fun stuff! Dwelling on anything is not that healthy. We learn from our mistakes/successes what works and what doesn't work. We need to take that experience and boldly go into the light.

7. I think what drove me insane for a long time is feeling like I hadn't earned most of what I achieved because it came so fast. Have you ever profited from something that at the time you felt that you did not earn?

Fast or slow, ones achievements (if they really belong to the achiever) are well-earned. I've never profited from anything that wasn't honestly earned...except maybe that one time....

8. I've got volumes on how not to behave. I've got more information now than a guy should have at my age. Have you ever behaved in a way that you should not have?

I usually do or say something that I shouldn't almost every day of my life. It's part of who I am. Sometimes it is totally humiliating for both me and my family, but...well...stuff happens.

9. The paramedic called the press and sold me like a loaf of bread. This was news, and he wanted to be the one to report it. Have you ever been in an ambulance? If not, have you ever been present when an ambulance was used?

No to both questions, however, I would love to give it a try. Charlie, you know why people sell you out...they either want some extra money, or, you have really ticked them off!

10. Uncertainty is a sign of humility, and humility is just the ability or the willingness to learn. Is there any uncertainty in your life at the present time? In the past?

As many moms may know, once their offspring have spread their wings, we sometimes stress over the uncertainty of them being happy and healthy when we no longer hold the reigns. I also think that most of us live every day with uncertainty about today the day that I will meet George Clooney...or, will my numbers win the lottery...or, am I going to figure out what's for dinner before 5:00?

I really appreciate you reading this far in my post! Please click on the Wednesday Wickedness logo below and see how others have joined in the fun!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Writer's Workshop - Blue Eyes

She fidgeted anxiously as the elevator slowly descended to the ground floor. It seemed to take forever to get to the main lobby.

“Where should I go for lunch? How much money do I have? Do I have to stop at the bank? Is my skirt on straight?” she asked herself. “Ugh! Why is this elevator taking so long?”

“Finally” she sighed, as the doors began to open. On the other side of the elevator doors stood a tall, perfectly chiseled young man in a business suit. She looked up at his steel blue eyes and at the same time he looked at hers. The color of his eyes was like nothing she had ever seen. His eyes were piercing, but his body was relaxed, and almost welcoming. They were both locked in a tracking beam and were focused so intently on each other that not even a bomb would have broken their mutual trances. Everything became dreamlike and in slow-motion.

As she began to exit the elevator, she felt a force pushing her back. She did not want this euphoric feeling to stop. She finally gave it her all and began to exit the elevator. She passed him with her eyes still locked onto his. He was still fixed on hers, and then he began to smile. She returned the smile immediately with a shy, girlish grin. As they passed each other, their hands brushed lightly. She could hear her heart pounding and feel the electricity all the way down to her toes. Turning toward the double glass exit doors, she made her way to the only place that would break this spell, even though it was not what she really wanted.

“Ten more steps” she said to herself, “and I will be free of this tracking beam.” She turned back to see if the elevator had closed yet, and saw that it had, but he was still standing just outside of the doors. He was watching her which caused her knees to turn to jelly. She grabbed on to the door handle to keep from falling to the floor in a puddle of jam.

“Get out right now!” she screamed to herself. With every ounce of energy, she pushed the doors open and stepped out into the warm, bright sun. She felt the sun’s rays wrap around her body from head to toe. She pulled out a pair of sunglasses from her purse and put them on. As she pushed the bridge into place, a quick flash of light was seen out of the corner of her left eye. She adjusted her wedding band and sighed.

“My, my” she laughed. “This is one lunch hour I will never forget!”

Thanks for stopping by! This story is brought to you by the Writer's Workshop with the hostess extraordinaire, Mama Kat. Click on the Writer's Workshop logo and enjoy the great stories of her followers!

Mama's Losin' It

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Friday Fragments, #106 - School Countdown!

As the week began, I calculated the exact amount of days and hours left before I join the ranks of the local middle school! My feelings are mixed; I'm ready to be on a schedule again (it's not like I could have made my own schedule while I was off) and to see some familiar faces. Last year's most obnoxious class was the 7th grade. Guess who will be the trend setters, role models and leaders of the pack? Yup, this year's 8th graders! It should be a non-stop, action-packed and thoroughly fascinating year!

I've been making lists of all the things I didn't get done this summer, and thought if I really busted my butt, I just might get to half of them by the time school starts. NOT! My wonderful temp agency called and offered me a job for next week! Hmmm....clean or make some money....that's a no-brainer, right? So much for my "To Do" list!

Ed has started a new job as a hostess at Olive Garden. I'm very excited for her as it is a considerable step up from the ice cream place where she used to work. She is still in training, but loving every minute of it! The college freshman begins her new journey on August 19th. Katya is looking forward to being a hot-shot high school senior, driving her VW Ghia, and smacking down the incoming freshmen!

Rock (who is really no longer Rock, as the band broke up) has not had much luck finding a job...anywhere...either in his major or otherwise. Welcome to the real world, boy! He has a job waiting for him at our local AMC theater. That really won't be too horrible as family gets in to the movies for free!

Speaking of movies, Mark Wahlberg and Will Ferrell stopped by yesterday for the St. Louis Premiere of "The Other Guys." I tried to get there early so I could tell Mark that I wanted to have his baby, but of course my chauffeur duties got in the way and I never made it to the show! Oh, well!

Thanks for stopping by to read this week's post, hosted by the incredibly awesome Mrs.4444. Click on her name to get to this week's post. Let her know you were by and do enjoy reading some of the other posts that are listed.

Have a wonderful weekend!

This is a blog hop! You're next!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Weekend Reflections #45 - China's Water City

This is another great shot that my amateur photographer daughter took while on her ambassador trip to China.

Every Friday through Sunday, Newtown Area Photo sponsors a meme where a gazillion photographers, amateur through pro, can showcase their work using a "Reflection" theme. I love to see the different points of view that people have, and the truly amazing pictures that they take.

Thank you Newtown Area Photo for sponsoring this meme every weekend, and allowing me to participate. Please visit James at Newtown Area Photo and be prepared to be "wowed!"

Have a wonderful weekend!