Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Traditions.....

Growing up as a young girl in northern Minnesota, Christmas was always a favorite time of year. No school, no homework (not much anyway), shopping, fun with friends, Christmas baking, playing in the snow, special programs at church, trudging through knee-deep snow to find a Christmas tree, decorating the tree, listening to Christmas music... The list could go on endlessly.

But perhaps my absolute favorite memory about the Christmas season is a tradition that started many years ago. On Christmas Eve, my Mom, sisters, and I would go to the Christmas Eve service at church. After the last song was sung, we would rush to pick my Dad up from work, where "neither snow nor rain, not heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds." In other words, because he worked at the Post Office, my dad usually worked Christmas Eve to deliver last minute cards and greetings.

Once Dad got off work, we would travel thirty miles over the river and through the woods to my Grandma and Grandpa Kading's house. We would hurry inside their cozy one-room cabin, and after a few hugs all around, the crackling fireplace beckoned us to enjoy her warmth, as sweet aromas filled the air, leaving our mouths watering in anticipation of a delicious meal. Our eyes adjusted while a small kerosene lantern glowed on the table, providing just enough light to create a wonderful ambiance.

At last it was time for dinner! Our whole family enjoyed close fellowship around the small dining room table as we laid our eyes on a wonderful feast! Our traditional Christmas Eve meal included ham on bun, potato salad, cranberries (Grandma usually had both kinds, since us girls were picky and only liked the ones from the can!), frog eye salad (it's not gross like it's name implies), lime jello with pears, cottage cheese, carrots, pickles, and probably something else that escapes my mind at the moment. After the delicious main course, the best part was yet to come. PIE!! As if one kind of pie weren't enough, how could you possibly choose between three different kinds? So, we usually sampled all of them. Pumpkin pie (Dad's favorite), apple pie, and filled cherry pie (Grandpa's favorite). And what piece of pie would be complete without a little rather large glob of real whipped cream, not Cool Whip, the whipped cream wanna-be. When our stomachs could hold no more, we'd get the kitchen cleaned up as quickly as our food-laden bodies would allow.

By this time, my sisters and I were nearly bursting with excitement. Either that, or it could have been the yummy food still in our stomachs. It was finally time to open gifts. Mom and Dad would usually bring one gift for each of us, and of course there were gifts from our grandparents. They would look on with enjoyment as my sisters and I rewarded them with shrieks of delight as we discovered our treasures! One Christmas in particular stands out to me. Or rather it's one gift that stands out. The details are slightly fuzzy, but I do remember playing with my new Tiny Tears doll under the dining room table. This was usually our place of choice for playing, probably due to the lack of room with all our gifts strewn about. Somehow my sisters and I felt like we were in our own little world, and imaginations would run wild as we played "house."

After an evening of extreme excitement and fabulous food, we would begin our journey home. Our loot would be carefully packed into the car and the rounds of hugs and kisses would begin. Before we left, Grandma would hand Becky, Erin, and me an individually-wrapped gingerbread man. I remember we usually didn't eat these for a couple weeks because they were special cookies.

In my memory, it was always snowing on those Christmas Eve nights when we left Grandma and Grandpa's house. The frosty night air would instantly chill our bodies, but out in the woods where my grandparents lived, one of my favorite things to do was gaze up at the beautiful night sky. In the stillness and intense blackness, the stars seemed to twinkle a little brighter than they did at home. An occasional tree would crack as it swayed in the wind, and often you could hear forest creatures utter their goodnight to their neighbors. Not wanting the Arctic temperatures to completely freeze us, we would quickly load into the car, with us three girls huddled together in the back seat. With stuffed tummies and hearts full of love, we would usually fall asleep only a couple miles down the road. We'd arrive home and head straight to bed, with the knowledge that tomorrow would also bring more excitement.

Christmas morning dawned bright and early. My sisters and I had bedrooms upstairs, but we knew on Christmas morning we were not allowed to go downstairs the minute we woke up. You see, Mom and Dad usually had one gift for us that they did not wrap. When we woke up, we would holler downstairs, signaling to our parents that we were ready for the day to begin. I don't remember what time we usually woke up, but shortly thereafter, Mom and Dad would join us upstairs, bringing breakfast with them. After eating, Dad would read the Christmas story from the Bible and then we'd head downstairs to open our presents and stockings.

We'd play with our gifts for the rest of the morning, and then it was time to head to my Dad's parents' house. This journey was much shorter, only 2 miles. A flurry of activity would follow, as aunts, uncles, and cousins gathered for a Christmas dinner of turkey, mashed potatoes, and all the trimmings. And of course, more pies, cookies, and candy..... The house was usually buzzing with excitement and chatter as people watched football, played games, and opened gifts. After round two of food, we were ready to head home.

Over the years, our traditions ad locations have changed slightly, but every Christmas brings my favorite tradition... celebrating Jesus' birth with family. As you gather with family this Christmas, please take a few moments to celebrate the real REASON we celebrate this wonderful season.

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. --Isaiah 9:6

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. --Luke 2:10-14


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It's Official!!!!

The last cookie has been frosted...

A child's yearly quota of sugar has been consumed...

Veggie Tales have entertained hyper children for the last time this year...

Glitter glue is no longer taking up eternal residence on the table...

Students have been introduced to Miss Heather's favorite Christmas book The Crippled Lamb...

Miss Heather nearly teared up while reading The Crippled Lamb...

Thousands of bits of wrapping paper are no longer peppered on the floor...

Miss Heather has checked and yes, she does still have all her hair...

The shrieks of excitement are a silent memory...

Sentiments such as Merry Christmas, See you next year, or I'll miss you have been uttered...

The anticipation of a huge snowstorm is lingering in everyone's minds...

The last student has been picked up...

The lights are turned off...

The door is closed....


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Not Me Monday Tuesday

Wow, what a week it's been. In fact, it was so busy that I took the liberty of creating a Not Me Monday Tuesday post. Just couldn't get it all done yesterday! You can still visit MckMama's blog to see those who were not procrastinators like me.... they actually got their Not Me posts done on the right day. But the way I see it, I'm just spreading out the fun, right? Okay, I know I'm in my own little world, but you can just humor me.

Anyway, getting on the the point of this post....

On one of my many late nights at school this week, I got a taco. Softshell chicken taco to be exact. About half-way through, I did not chomp on a chicken bone and feel like I nearly broke a tooth. Hmmmm.... maybe I should call my sister Erin for tooth-gluing tips.

Friday night after school, I did not travel to Duluth (80 miles from home) with two friends to look at Christmas lights. Why didn't you look at lights in your own town? you might ask. Well, if we were honest here, I'd tell you that the real reason we went to Duluth was not to eat at the best place on earth--Olive Garden! While there, I absolutely did not order manicotti. And if the server accidentally placed such a hideous dish in front of me, there is definitely no way on Earth I would take a picture. No, that would be totally inappropriate in a nice restaurant!

After a scrumptious dinner, we layered on our warm clothing and headed to Bentleyville, an outdoor light display in downtown Duluth. We did not nearly freeze, since we were near Lake Superior and it was rather windy. Seeing the outdoor ice skating rink, literally thousands of lights, and snowmen and reindeer roaming about, I did not envision myself in a movie. With the cheery Christmas tunes from the likes of Bing Crosby and Gene Autry, Jenny, Rebecca, and I would never have embarassed ourselves by linking arms and skipping down the path, all the while singing. No way... not us!!! Here are a couple shots from our night.

After gallivanting around on Friday night, I did not sleep in on Saturday. And when I finally woke up in the land of the living, I did not have 5 purses to finish and get in the mail. With the hand-stitching completed, I did not have to rush to the post office to meet the deadline for mail pick-up. There were not 6 people ahead of me in line and when it was all said and done, I did not have only 3 minutes until the truck came to whisk away the packages mailed late by procrastinators such as myself all those other people ahead of me in line.

Because I'm not the cool teacher I am, I did not bake sugar cookies for my students. In case you have me confused with that other crazy teacher, I did not put a couple of spoonfuls of frosting on a plate and let the kids go to it. Even more exciting, some of the frosting even make it onto the cookies!

Okay, here's the Wal-Mart story I promised you...
Yesterday I went to the Wal-Mart photo center to print out 4 pictures I needed for a school project. 4 pictures, people! I looked at the Kodak machine and there was a message saying it was out of paper. Once I got the attention of the lab technician social chatterer, I mentioned that the printer was out of paper. He looked at me like I had an alien head and said, "Yeah, that machine isn't working right now." Fine, I'll go to the next machine. As I started to touch the screen, Mr. Helpful did not say to me, "That one doesn't work either."

Okay, Buddy, would it be easier for you to tell me what machine DOES work?

Only the Fuji machines work right now."

Is that because you don't want to take the time to add more paper? Okay, now to find a Fuji machine.

All full. Of course they are. Okay, I'll wait.

Three hours fifteen minutes later, a machine opened up, so I started to upload 300+ pictures. Once I found the ones I wanted, I tried to order the specific size I needed. When I didn't see the mini prints, I hit another button for more sizes. BIG MISTAKE! The 300+ pictures were not gone from the screen, and I did not have to start over.

So starting over once again, this time the computer did not freeze at picture #26. For four minutes! Yeah, this isn't going so well.

Back to the counter to speak to Mr. Not-So-Helpful, I mentioned that the computer was frozen. He did not walk over, hit a button, speak not a word to me, and head back to whatever it was that was consuming his time.

Another four minutes pass... computer still is not on.

Waiting, waiting, waiting....

In the meantime, another computer opened up, so I moved to that machine, loaded pictures (all 300+ of them), and looked for the mini print option. When I couldn't find it, I decided once again to solicit the services of Mr. Not-So-Helpful. "Excuse me, how do you do the mini prints on this computer? You know, the ones that print 4 small prints on a standard 4 x 6 print?"

This was not his reply: "The Fuji machines don't have that option. The only machines that print the mini prints are the Kodak machines."

At this point, I was not trying to hold in a very rude comment. So I politely said, "Like Kodak as in the 4 machines that aren't working now?"

"Yes, that's right. Or you could do a collage print and print out an 8 x 10 size or larger."

Not really what I wanted, thank you. That's why I asked about "mini prints."

As I left the photo department completely defeated, I glanced at my watch. I did not waste 45 minutes and have absolutely nothing to show for it! My next step? I did not head to Target to print out my pictures... and I was not successful. Thank you, Target.

Do you have some moments you'd rather not claim? Try a not me post and see how therapeutic it can be!


For those of you who get this emailed to you, that last post was an oops..... I was searching for something on google, hit return, and didn't realize i'd jumped back to another window, the one that had my blog post up. So.... I'll finish it later. Although, just re-thinking about my Walmart trip, I'm mad all over again! :)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Not Me Monday--Postponed until Tuesday

To all my faithful blog readers--yes, all 4 of you--I will be postponing my Not Me post until Tuesday. I actually have a really good annoying story for you, but it's going to take too long to write tonight.... so you'll just have to be patient and wait till tomorrow!

Sweet dreams!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Crafts with Auntie Rah

Tonight Callie, Ashleigh, Natalie, and even Micah got in on some crafty action with Auntie Rah. Yes, I know I'm a little adventurous to try something involving paint, especially with almost-two-year-old Micah, but it was fun!The ornaments turned out as unique as those who made them. And we had ZERO mishaps with the paint! (Becky, you have to act surprised when you see these!)

Of course, Micah had a few other things on his mind....

Monday, November 30, 2009

Not Me Monday

When I saw that MckMama was skipping her Not Me Monday post, I was not tempted to do the same. However, since you are reading this, you will know that I was not successful in convincing Myself that I would ignore my blog today. Myself had a thousand things on the "To Do" list, and even though I told Myself to scratch the Not Me post, Myself won the argument. (Are you as confused as I am yet?)

Okay, enough of that rabbit trail.

I did not realize that it has been almost two weeks since I've paid any attention to my blog. TWO WEEKS! So for the many two people out there who actually read my blog, I hope you're glad to know I'm still alive.

Today I was practicing songs for my students to sing in our annual Christmas program--which is not coming too quickly, I might add--and I did not call my sister Erin, who happens to be very gifted musically, to beg for her assistance with some chords. I did not decide it would be easier/quicker to call her rather than try to figure them out myself. Thanks, Erin!

After playing the piano for 2 hours, my neck and shoulders were not entirely numb and throbbing.

I have never ever ever worked at school/church past 7:30 p.m., so you can rest assured that it was not me who left the building at 9:30 p.m. recently. Nope! Not me!

Have you ever had a "Better you than me" situation? Here is something that I would refuse to own up to... therefore you know it did not happen to me. Let's just say it happened to my friend H. Oh, she would be so embarassed if she knew I told this story, but she's not here, so don't rat me out, okay? While H was in the drive-thru recently, she did not reach for her drink with a gloved hand. Hmmmm... plastic cup + gloved hand = a bad combination. While the unsuspecting drive-thru worker was transferring the up, it did not slip from H's hand, to the point that it was completely upside-down. Thankfully, the girl had no let go yet and she was able to right the cup to the correct position and hand it to H, while the cover was completely drenched in root beer. What do you think was the next thing handed through the window? Not a pile of napkins. H gingerly wiped up the messy lid, gathered up the soggy napkins and her pride, and pulled away from the window, grateful she was in the semi-privacy of her vehicle and not inside the restaurant! Once again, this is our secret, right?

As if it wouldn't be bad enough to stretch out these events throughout a week, I have not just described my Monday. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, these things did not all happen TODAY!

Stop by MckMama's blog to read some more great stories, and maybe you'll be inspired to join the fun next week!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

It's the Little Things...

... that I'm thankful for.

Let me explain. Tuesday in preschool we made ice cream. Oooooo, it was yummy! The process wasn't completely painless though, and I mean that literally! Each child had his/her own bag to make their own ice cream. Well, after about 4 shakes, they asked in a chorus, "Is mine ready now, Miss Heather?" Wait a minute, didn't something like this happen once to me before? Ahhhh, yes, I remember now. Does "butter" ring a bell? (If not, read here.)

Well, Miss Heather ended up shaking bags for four very adorable preschool students who suddenly developed weak muscles. By the time the liquid had thickened to ice cream consistency, my fingers were rather cold. At least I think they were. You see, they were so numb that I could hardly feel them.

As I considered what to do for class today, I knew ice cream was on the "menu," but to be honest, I wasn't looking forward too much to making their ice cream, too, especially since I have a total of 12 preschool students on Wednesday. I figured I wouldn't have any fingers left at all!

Stopping at Walmart on the way home, I picked up the few things I needed and while taking a detour through the housewares department on the way to my destination, my eye was immediately drawn to an end cap filled with... you guessed it! ICE CREAM MAKERS! I was not expecting to see them in the store, let alone buy one. But the "Clearance" sign piqued my interest. I didn't see a price, so in my mind I determined the maximum I would be willing to pay for it. When I found a sales associate to scan the price, imagine my utter surprise when the price same up $6.00. $6.00??? Are you kidding me? I should take two at that price!

So today in preschool, I was once again excited because there were no frozen fingers in my future. Just some absolutely yummy, extremely delicious ice cream that I didn't have to make by hand!

Thank you, Jesus!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

At times, I'm amazed at God's timing, although I shouldn't be. On Monday, I received a call from a Cubbie leader saying she wouldn't be there Wednesday night. Not a major problem, since there are two leaders at most tables. Tuesday I had a similar message from another leader... I can't be there Wednesday night. Okay, no need for panic. We'll be fine. A while later, I heard from yet another leader that she had to be gone for a few minutes tonight to speak to another group. Okay, that's three leaders. I think I'll stop answering my phone now.

After school today when I was in my "Cubbie prep mode," I had a call from a friend of mine. Her first words?? "Do you need any help in Cubbies tonight?"

(Enter complete and utter shock here!)

Why, yes, I definitely do need help tonight!

She then proceeded to tell me that she'd felt a nagging today to call me. Coincidence? I don't think so! God knew exactly what help I would need tonight. Not that God "nags" us to do anything, but in His own sovereign way, He impressed upon Katie the need to call me to volunteer herself... AND her husband!

Exactly ten minutes later (yes, I checked the time on my phone), Cubbie leader #3 called to say her son has pink eye, so she wouldn't be coming tonight. Once again, God took care of my needs even before I knew what they were! As Cubbies started tonight, one parent asked, "Do you have anyone to replace the leader at the purple table? Do you want me to help?"

I had three leaders gone tonight, and three people randomly volunteered to help. Let me rephrase that... I don't think it was "random" at all. It was totally God taking care of my needs even before I knew I would have a need! Isn't God great?!?!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

So today I'm thankful for the little things... things like ice cream makers and volunteers! What are you thankful for?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Not Me Monday

MckMama is back for Not Me Monday, so be sure to check out her blog for more Not Me fun!

Hmmmm..... what to write about. Let's see if I can find any blogworthy news that happened did not happen to me this week.

I did not thoroughly enjoy my 3-day week last week at preschool. Let's see... Monday was a day off. End of the quarter or something like that. Let's be honest here. It was not a hunting day here in Minnesota. Tuesday, three-year-olds. Wednesday, four-year-olds, Thursday, three-year-olds. Friday... I did not take the day off to spend the weekend at my sister Becky's house. On Friday night, Becky and Chris renewed their vows. We were planning to take pictures outside, but it was not raining most of the day, so we ended up doing all the pictures in the church. It was a beautiful evening with family and friends as Becky and Chris committed their marriage and children to God. Here are a few pictures from the event.

The rest of the weekend at my sister's house was not spent in watching movies, enjoying slumber parties with the girls, playing Farmville with Callie, plenty of tickles with Natalie, trying to keep up with Micah, and losing a game of Clue to my 7-year-old niece, Ashleigh. It was not a great weekend!

Back to reality and preschool. Since we're on letter "I" this week in preschool, I did not contemplate how easy it would be to simply make ice cubes for the students to play with. You see, I usually try to plan activities that reinforce the letter we're learning for the week. So, how easy would it have been to simply make ice cubes? Maybe add a little food coloring for something more exciting? Well, I did not opt to go all out and make something more exotic. Can you guess what it is? (Mom, you can't answer!)

After several incidents with Internet Explorer crashing, stalling, not responding, and generally annoying me to no end, I did not finally give in and download Mozilla Firefox on my laptop. I've used it before, and I must admit that I hated it. But, the hopes of writing a blog post without receiving an error message that IE has unexpectedly closed... well, it is not wonderful! And I am not a converted Forefox supporter!

I did not write this entire post with zero error messages! And the pictures did not upload very quickly! I love it!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Blaze of Glory Orangey

Once again, it's that time of year when Minnesota hunters hit the woods in search of a trophy buck. That is, all except for my dad. His reason for hunting? Purely for the meat. You won't see him pass up a doe, just because "the big one" might be out there still.

I have fond memories of hunting season. No, I've never ventured out in blaze orange clothing, sporting multiple layers of clothing to keep warm, trudging through snow to the perfect deer stand, and lugging a heavy gun on my shoulder. Quite the contrary. My parents used to hunt with my Grandpa, which meant that my two younger sisters and I spent lots of quality time with Grandma.

The trek to their house was filled with excitement. We always were thrilled to visit my grandparents in their small, one-room, lamp-lit cabin. You see, for most of our growing-up years, my grandparents made their home in a secluded cabin in the north woods of Minnesota. While they decided to build their home without electricity or running water, that was part of the adventure for us girls.

Some of my favorite memories... standing in front of the wood stove on a chilly evening, hiking the boardwalk to the creek out back, the smell of Grandpa's shed in the "boneyard," the sound of the red hand pump, feeding the deer and seeing them on the edge of the woods just waiting for us to leave so they could make their way to the feeder, the moose antlers hanging over the wood stove, Little Red (resident red squirrel), playing thousands of card games on the porch, sitting in the "dark" watching the lamplight flicker, making "craft projects" and using so much tape Grandpa would say, "I should have taken out stock in 3M," playing "house" with our dolls under the table, and Grandma's pancakes!

Okay, back to hunting season.

Once Dad got off work, we would make the 30-mile trip to my grandparents house. After a yummy supper, we do the dishes (with water heated in the tea kettle, of course) and spend the evening in the light of the flickering lamp on the table, listening to the wood crackle in the stove which radiated its heat through the house. Before we knew it, it was time to hit the hay because the hunters would be up in a few hours to prepare for the day of hunting.

In a matter of a few hours, it was opening day! As I mentioned before, it was basically a one room house, and no matter how quiet their voices were, it was inevitable that my sisters and I would wake up as Mom, Dad, and Grandpa prepared to leave. Of course Grandma was up making breakfast, lunches, and multiple snacks for their day out in the elements. Knowing the fire had long since burned out, Becky, Erin, and I would stay snuggled in our sleeping bags and only sit up for a quick hug and kiss before the hunters were off.

After a few more hours of sleep, we'd no doubt hear the familiar squeak of the stove door and a thump as Grandma started a fire. I can almost hear her saying right now, "Girls, just stay in your sleeping bags until it warms up in here." We'd giggle and wiggle as we waited for the temperature to rise and would often jump into bed with Grandma to snuggle before we got the okay to get up. In didn't take long for Grandma to ask, "What do you girls want for breakfast?" I really don't know why she always asked this question, because she knew we would chime in unison Pancakes!

Thus would begin our fun-filled day of cartoons (yes, they had a battery-operated TV), games, craft projects, and so much more. Later in the afternoon, we would keep watch to see the hunters returning, hoping we'd see a deer in the truck as reward for their long day in the cold. The evening was filled with stories of the day, every detail told with exact preciseness so we could feel like we were experiencing the day with them.

After quite a few years of not hunting, my Dad got back into it a couple years ago. As I said earlier, he's not obsessed with getting a huge, mount-it-on-your-wall, trophy buck. This year was no exception. A run-down of his day:

5:15 AM Wake up call
6:00 AM In deer stand
6:30 AM Daylight
7:30 AM Shoot deer
9:30 AM Arrive at home
10:30 AM Deer hung and skinned
11:00 AM Out hunting once again

For not being a trophy-buck hunter, he sure got a nice deer. An 8-point buck! Biggest one he's ever shot. Way to go, Dad!

Doesn't he look proud?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Not Me Monday

On Friday night, I did not have 7 girls come over for a movie night. Knowing my past track record, I did not resist the urge to make manicotti. I did not make something else that was almost as delicious! Here it is: Garden Ranch Pizza

Want a closer look???

Friends, fun, fellowship, food... it was a great evening (well, evening into the morning), and once everyone had left, I did not fall asleep in the chair for several hours. When I finally became conscious, I did not look at the clock and see the numbers 4, 3, 0... I'll let you decide if this was the order I read them off the clock. And Saturday? I did not get up at 12:00 p.m.

Daylight Savings Time... how exciting to be given, free of charge, an extra hour of sleep. Okay, I know we have an hour stolen from us in the spring... but for now, it seems free! What did I do with my extra hour of sleep? I completely enjoyed it and took advantage of it. I definitely did not stay up an hour LATER than I should have. So my "free" hour of sleep ended up being NOTHING!

I'm always trying to come up with something interesting for my preschoolers to play with. Today was no exception. I did not find an ooey, gooey, sticky mess for their enjoyment today. I did not dump an entire box of corn starch into the water table, add water, and let the kids mix up the delightful concoction. How messy was it? you might ask. I did not have to stick a girl's pigtails under the faucet to wash out the starchy substance!

MckMama didn't post a Not Me Monday today, but you can check her blog for an update on her son Stellan. Keep praying!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

A Few Random Questions... and Answers

Due to the fact that my brain hasn't been too creative lately, I found some random questions and decided I'd let them fill up a blog post. Hey, you just might learn something about me!

1. Do you speak with an accent? according to some people, yes
2. What was your last thought? I should go to bed
3. What book are you currently reading? She’s All That by Kristin Billerbeck
4. What food do you dislike? Broccoli and Chinese food
5. Have you ever played a prank on someone? oh, yes. My sisters and I once played an amazing prank on our parents and their friends. Ah, the memories!

* * * * *
6. What kind of pasta do you like? MANICOTTI, spaghetti, lasagna… pretty much all of them
7. Do you have a nickname? Auntie Rah, Heath, RahRah, Heathery, Teacher, Miss Hedder
8. Do you own a cell phone? Yes, a purple Motorola W755
9. Are you a night owl or a morning person? definitely a night owl
10. Who is your favorite actor/actress? As far as acting goes: Tom Hanks or Mel Gibson. An actor to look at? MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY Favortie actress: Sandra Bullock
* * * * *
11. Would you rather watch TV or a movie? a movie… no commercials
12. What kind of eggs do you like? scrambled with cheese and ham
13. What's your dream honeymoon? forget the honeymoon… dream vacation is definitely ITALY!
14. What is the last movie you saw in the theater? Love Happens
15. What do you do for fun? photography, play piano, read
* * * * *
16. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Peppermint Bon Bon or Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough… it’s a tie!
17. Do you use a Mac or a PC? Toshiba
18. Do you like strawberries? Yes, especially from my parents’ garden
19. Have you gone to college? Yes, I graduated in 2001
20. What is your favorite number? 9
* * * * *
21. What was your favorite high school subject? Algebra
22. Are you an only child? No, I have 2 younger sisters
23. What is your favorite cartoon? Bugs Bunny
24. What is your least favorite song in the world? definitely Fur Elise
25. Do you prefer McDonald’s or Burger King? McDonald’s for fries, Burger King for cheeseburger
* * * * *
26. If you could make any junk food super-nutritious, which one would you pick? Pizza
27. Do you prefer apple or orange juice? Apple
28. What foreign countries have you visited? Canada, Costa Rica, and Guatemala
29. Do you have a college degree? yes, Early Childhood Education Degree
30. What musical instrument do you play? Piano
* * * * *
31. What is your favorite football team? I HATE FOOTBALL
32. When you look at the color blue, what does it make you think of? the sky
33. Do you like thunderstorms? absolutely
34. Do you drink coffee? NO!
35. If you were one of the seven dwarfs, who would you be? Sleepy
* * * * *
36. What color are your eyes? 10 years ago? Blue… Right now? Green
37. What is your favorite hot drink? Hot cocoa
38. Have you ever broken a bone? nope, knock on wood!
39. Are you right-handed or left-handed? Right-handed, although I always wanted to be left-handed
40. How many hobbies do you have? too many to count
* * * * *
41. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? that's a tough one. I've always wanted to live in the mountains in a log cabin, and I definitely want to visit Italy someday, but I don't know if I'd like to live there
42. If you had friends coming for supper, what would you cook? definitely NOT manicotti… long story (read here)
43. What makes you cry? goodbyes, movies, pain
44. What makes you laugh? my nieces and nephews, my sisters, my preschool students
45. What do you do for fun? photography, play piano, read
* * * * *
46. Do you have any pets? I have 3 fish in my classroom at school… does that count?
47. What is your favorite place to eat? Olive Garden
48. Would you kill a spider or let it outside? KILL IT
49. Do you shower every day? Yes… usually. Except for when I don’t.
50. Do you prefer flip flops or tennis shoes? flip flops
* * * * *
51. Do you like bananas? Yes, but not banana flavoring
52. Have you ever caught a snowflake on your tongue? oh yeah
53. Do you prefer the beach or mountains? Mountains, definitely
54. Have you ever been on TV? Yep, in KC sitting outside Best Buy on Thanksgiving, waiting for the sales to start
55. What is something weird about yourself? I have to have my pillow a certain way when I sleep?

Well, there you have it. A few lot of question and answers about me. Maybe one day soon I'll get some inspiration and do something a little more original.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Not Me Monday

Oh, don't you just love Mondays? No, I'm not suffering from an illness... Who wouldn't love Mondays because it's time for Not Me Monday! Check out MckMama's blog to read more.

A while back, I wrote this post about an upcoming contest. Well, Saturday was not the big day. My Etsy shop was not featured on MckMama's blog. Since I've been waiting for this for a long time, it certainly was not me who didn't even read her post until my sister told me about it. I was not on my way to bed, and I did not stay up for another hour and a half to read the comments. In the few hours after posting, there were not 331 comments, and as of today, the grand total was not 1034! I did not read EVERY SINGLE COMMENT. I am not super excited about the possibilities that could come from this type of promotion. Thanks, MckMama!

After reading this post, one would think I've learned my lesson when it somes to cooking a certain Italian dish. That is why there is absolutely, definitely, not-in-this-lifetime even a slight change that I would have given into the temptation to purchase a package of that delightful tube-shaped pasta today. I will absolutely, definitely, bet-your-bottom-dollar, NEVER EVER make m@#$*&%^! again. And if I do happen to make it anytime this week, you can be sure I'm not going to let anyone know when I'm making it. (And by the way, if any of you happen to feel the slightest bit under the weather this week, please do my self-esteem some good and don't tell me!

Well, since it's nearly Tuesday, I better get this posted, so I guess that's all for this week. Happy Monday!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Not Me Monday

It's that wonderful day again... Monday! No, it doesn't just mean the end of the weekend, the start of another loooonnnnngggg workweek. It means it's time for "Not Me Monday!" If you're as excited as I am, check out MckMama's blog to read more.

It's been a pretty boring week for me, but I do have a couple things that were funny absolutely did not happen to me this week.

I'm getting busy with making purses now (check out my Etsy shop here), so I decided to get some more fleece before I run out. When I stepped up to the cutting counter at my local Wal-Mart store, the clerk did not say to me, "Are you still making purses?" Really, am I here that often that you know that? Oh, that is just sad!

The following day, after my Wal-Mart excursion, I received my shipment of fabric from my sister in KC... for the 6 purses that I am making. Knowing that I would need to buy the matching fabric before I cut them out, I headed to Wal-Mart again before going to "craft night" at church. Oh good, it's another lady this time. Since I only had 1 bolt of fabric, not 400, I felt my confidence rise as I waited to have the fabric cut. My hopes were soon dashed. Enter lady 2: "Are you making more purses?" Um.... no, I'm NOT making purses. As you can guess, I am not well-known at my Wal-Mart fabric department.

As I mentioned earlier, every month we have craft night at church for people to come work on scrapbooking, sewing, knitting, etc. Some ladies come just for fellowship--and snacks! My project for the night: cut out purses! For the first hour or so, there was only one other lady there, and she was concentrating very hard on sewing together a quilt, so I was in my own little world cutting out purses. My friend Sue arrived with a friend of hers and we were getting acquainted. (We figured out that she attended the same school I did, but after I graduated. She was actually a friend of my younger sister.) Anyway, in the course of the conversation, Anna asked where I work. My reply: I teach preschool at this church.

I was in the process of making another comment as she asked another question, and the timing was not the greatest. Her question: "Are you married?" My reply (which was meant for a comment on my previous statement about where I work): It's what I went to school for.

After realizing that she had asked another question as I was talking, it kinda came out like this...
"Are you married?"
"It's what I went to school for."
Oh my! We did not laugh about that one for a few minutes!

During my extremely concentrated, thoroughly focused time of cutting out fabric, there is absolutely no way that I mis-measured as I was cutting. Nope, I always follow that old saying Measure twice, cut once. Since that for sure did not happen, there is no way I could have done it twice, let along three times! Well, I did measure twice... It just wasn't on the same piece. You know what they say... Third Fourth time's the charm!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

My Week in Numbers

So my sister Erin did this post yesterday and it was really cute, so I thought I'd give it a try.

40—kids in Cubbies on Wednesday

100+—temperature in Cubbie room on Wednesday (might be exaggerating a tad)

117—preschool pictures I lost when my camera read "card error" and I'm unable to view pictures on that card

1—memory cards I've thrown away this week

3—days I've forgotten to wear my watch to school and been totally lost without it

2—days we've had frost this week

0—days I've worn socks to school this week

5—number of times my preschoolers shook the jar while making butter

7,597—number of times Miss Heather got to shake the jar to finish making butter

4—hours until I'll probably go to bed

19—hours until the weekend officially starts

0300—time I'll probably go to bed Friday night/Saturday morn

12—minutes I've wasted writing this post when I should have been sewing

Monday, September 28, 2009

Not Me Monday

Ready for some good clean fun? It's time for Not Me Monday again. MckMama ingeniously created this hilarious therapeutic blog idea, so check out her blog to read more.

Well, as I stated in my last Not Me post, I said I would try to post something before this week's not me post. I tried in vain to post yesterday, but something was messed up with blogger and I wasn't able to upload pictures. Therefore, to keep my "promise" from last week, I did not publish this post 10 minutes before I started to write my Not Me post. And I did not change the date so it looks like I posted it yesterday.

On the first night of Cubbies, I mentioned here that we did not have 37 kids. That's a lot of preschoolers in a small room! As I was dreading looking forward to this past Wednesday, I was not completely overwhelmed with the thought of that many kids again. Our final head count? Well, it was more than 37 and less than 41. But it most certainly was not 40. No, we definitely did not have 40 Cubbies in the same small microscopic room.

Because of the many bodies in the room, 48 in total, I did not feel the need to open the window so we could breathe in the suffocating heat of the room... all the while telling myself Remember to shut this window before you go home.

The evening went on and we survived, and I must say I was relieved when it was done. As I cleaned up, still sweating from the busy night, I decided to leave the window open a while longer. Note to self: Remember to shut this window before you go home. I was finally ready to leave 30 minutes later, gathered my stuff, and headed home.

Upon reflection of the evening... 40 kids, not enough leaders, loud preschool conversations, suffocating heat. Wait a minute! Suffocating heat? My mind ran in fast rewind. 40 kids, very hot, open window, Remember to shut this window before you go home. There is absolutely no chance on this earth that I would have exited the church without shutting the window. And if I did by chance forget to shut the window, there is no way I would have gotten in the car, left the parking lot, and driven ALL the way home before I remembered that the window was still open.

Knowing that I couldn't be responsible for any damage that would happen if any person or creature entered the window, I did not jump back in the car and drive all the way back to church. As I was driving, what was going through my head? Did I really forget to shut the window? Maybe I did shut it. Hmmmm. Well, I arrived at church and was not relieved to see that I did leave the window open. Well, I wouldn't want to be the person who thought the window was open and realize that I'd closed it. No, I wouldn't want to be that person.

After a long day at school on Friday, I for sure did not stay up WAY too late once again. This time, I for sure did not stay up until 3:00 a.m. And I absolutely, positively, most definitely did not stay in bed until 12:00 p.m. the following day! Nope, not me!

In preschool today, I did not have a messy painting project for the kids to do. I'm sure some of the parents probably think I'm crazy, but last year parents were thrilled that I did some of these activities, because they said their kids would never get to do anything like that at home. Anyway, have you ever heard of bubble painting? It's really fun. And for all those times that kids have been disappointed when told not to blow bubbles in their milk, today made up for it. Here's how it works:

Mix water and liquid watercolor paint in a bowl.
Add a few drops of liquid soap.
Protect table with tablecloth.
Use straw to blow bubbles in the paint mixture.
When bubbles spill over the edge of bowl, place white paper on bubbles.
Voila! A beautiful bubble print will emerge.

This activity was a huge hit with the kids, which resulted in many sheets of paint-soap-water-soaked paper strewn across the table. Since drying space and time was limited, I did not dry nearly 30 sheets of paper under the automatic hand dryer to speed up the process. Well, who says teachers aren't ingenious! :)

So that's a little glimpse of my week. Join the fun! I'd love to read what you have not done this week!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Go Twins!

Last Sunday, my parents and I travelled to Minneapolis to cheer on the Twins one last time in the Metrodome, since they'll be playing in a new ballpark next year. Even thought the final result of the game was a loss for the Twins, we did have a good time. Here are a few snapshots from our day.

The Metrodome

Twins' Mascot TC

Soon-to-be-three-time A.L Batting Champ JOE MAUER!

Players stretching before the game.

A good-sized crowd in attendance.

My parents after the game.

It's been fun at the Metrodome, and I'm looking forward to outdoor baseball next year.