Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Smart or Smart Aleck?

For as long as I can remember, Cody has been infatuated with abbreviations. I've listed examples of some he is familiar with.


I am certain Cody knows countless others, nevertheless I was surprised this evening when Don asked Cody to help him do something and his reply was...

"DIY dad!"

I had no idea he knew that one!

Smart Aleck [al-ik]-
1. a wise guy
2. an obnoxiously conceited person

Just for fun, how many of these do YOU know?

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Kindergarten Portraits

Every child in Mrs. B's Kindergarten class had a turn being 'Special Friend of the Day'. When a child was chosen to be the 'Special Friend', he/she sat before the class and they asked him/her questions about themselves. After that, every student had an assignment to draw a picture of that 'Special' person.

I couldn't resist taking a few pictures of some of the portraits. Here are the ones that really made me smile. Enjoy the various sizes and shapes, as well as limbs that not only bend like Gumby, but are attached directly to the head :)

These first three are suppose to be a boy named Quincy...

The next three are a girl named Rylee...

And these last three are David...

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Old People Snacks

My son Chase was at the house a few days ago, complaining about being hungry. (He thinks he's always hungry.) When I told him to find something to eat, he opened one of the kitchen cupboards and said, half jestingly, "Why do only have old people snacks?"

Do these look like old people snacks to you?

This is my baking cupboard. What you don't see, hidden behind the nuts and under the plastic eggs (which are obviously out-of-place), are chocolate chips, marshmallows, coconut and powdered sugar.

Obviously Chase looked in the wrong place. All he had to do was walk to the pantry to partake of what I suppose he'd refer to as "young people snacks" ( i.e. junk food).

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Worth of a Child

Do you remember my posts about the student that stole things from our classroom, pooped in a urinal, talked out of turn and pretty much had behavior issues all school year? Well, one morning last week he said, "Mrs. Lancaster. Don't look." (Words every adult wants to hear from a child, right?) He then preceded to ask me, "How do you spell you?", so I had him search for the sight word 'you' on our Word Wall. Then he asked how to spell 'are'. Trying to encourage him, I said, "If you can't find it on the Word Wall, sound it out. You can do it." He then continued to work hard on his 'secret project'. After a time, he got out of his chair and walked over to the table where I was testing students. Handing me a piece of scratch paper, he said, "Mrs. Lancaster, will you write your name?" I quickly jotted down my name and handed it back to him. A few minutes later, he got up from his desk, came back over and handed this to me...

THIS is why I do what I do. EVERY child is worth it!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Idea of Theater Etiquette

I enjoy going to the movies, but there are a few things that I require.

1) I like to choose movies that are rated PG-13 or higher. Not because I enjoy nudity or foul language or blood and guts, but because I don't want to be in a room full of children (especially unattended children). When evening comes around, I have usually had my share of kids.

2) I have to get the big, refillable tub of popcorn with extra butter and a Diet Coke with crushed ice. If I can't get the treats, I may as well stay home and watch Netflix.

3) I prefer to sit on the very back row. I don't like people sitting behind me, mostly because I want to pig out on my popcorn in peace without feeling like people are saying "Holy cow. Look at that lady chow down. You'd think she hasn't eaten in a week."

4) I like to have empty chairs around me. I appreciate my personal space. What is it with people that think they need to sit so close anyway? Don and I can be the first and only two in the theater and, without fail, people come and sit in the row right in front of us.

Now, keeping the aforementioned in mind, let me describe my date night/ theater experience this week.

Monday night, Don and I chose to see 'The Adjustment Bureau'. We arrived early and paid a whopping nineteen dollars for a package deal...two tickets, one large refillable tub of popcorn with extra butter, 2 large, refillable Diet Coke's, and a package of Swedish Fish. (Not bad, huh?)

Although a few other people were already sitting in the theater, we were happy to see the back row was completely empty. Don and I no more than settled into our seats, when we looked up to see a couple coming straight toward us. "Great" I thought. "There are probably two hundred seats in here with only a dozen taken and these two are going to sit right by us?!"

I tried to concentrate on the movie, but was more worried about the two space invaders and how they were bound to notice that Don and I can put away an entire tub of popcorn by ourselves. Then, approximately three minutes into the movie, some dude sitting one row ahead of us, began laughing... loudly! "What's wrong with laughing during a movie?" you may be wondering. Well... nothing is wrong with laughing IF. IT'S. FUNNY. Have you seen 'The Adjustment Bureau'? It's not a comedy! At first, Don and I got a kick out of listening to the man laughing at humorless lines, but after awhile, it became annoying as hell. At one point, Don leaned over to me and said, "If this guy doesn't shut up soon, I'm going to suck Coke through my straw and spit it on him."

In the end, Hyena Man must have come down from his high or something, because he eventually stopped laughing. And, although I still felt paranoid about eating my popcorn, I was able to stop worrying about my husband wasting his perfectly good Diet Coke.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Feingold Diet and Autism

The following article was written by a mother of an autistic child who practices medicine in San Rafael, California.

Personally, I do not feel it's necessary to go to the extremes of the Feingold Diet with my son, but I do think it may be of interest to some parents of ASD children.

Here is the link for those of you who may be interested: Feingold Diet

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My Mean Girl Moment

I wasn't a mean girl in high school, but I did have one bad moment. To this day, I regret my actions and wish I had behaved differently. Here's the scoop...

I went to Mexico with my high school Spanish class my sophomore year. Jill, my best friend, and I shared a hotel room with two other girls. Girl #1 was fun and we didn't mind sharing a room with her. Girl #2, not so much. If you saw #2 from behind, she looked nice enough (Farrah Fawcett hairstyle, trendy clothes and shapely figure), but when she turned around, let's just say she wasn't exactly easy on the eyes.

A couple of things bugged all three of us about #2. For one thing, she had more money to spend than anyone else in the class. While the majority of the students went to one of Puerto Vallarta's markets to purchase snacks that wouldn't give us diarrhea (saltines and bottled orange soda come to mind), #2 thought nothing about paying quadruple the money for Cheetos at our hotel gift shop.

Girl #2 also loved to curl her hair...over and over and over. Seriously?! It was so muggy in Puerto Vallarta that, depending on your hair type, you either had tight curls stuck to your head or hippy straight hair. While the rest of the females adjusted and dealt with the humidity, #2 stayed in the room all day, partying with her curling iron.

The only time I remember girl #2 coming out of the hotel room to be social, was the 'mean girl moment' I am going to tell you about.

I'm sorry the photo is bad, but it was taken by
a teenager (moi) with a 1970's Kodak.

The four of us were swimming near a large island in the pool (above). Girl #1, Jill and I came up with a plan to ditch #2. We told #2 we wanted to play a fun game and clock each other to see who could swim around the island the fastest. AND, just so #2 would think it was a legitimate competition, girl #1 went first. We timed #1 while she swam around the entire island. When it was #2's turn, we did the whole "Get ready. Get set. Go!" thing, watched her until she was out of sight, and then made a mad dash out of the pool.

I know. I know! Horrible, horrible, horrible. I can NOT believe I did something so heartless to a classmate and on foreign soil no less. The poor girl was thousands of mile away from home. Sad.

Now, before you write hateful comments toward me, keep in mind that this occurred over thirty years ago. I obviously had a snotty, sixteen year old, beeotch moment.

11 Places I'd Like to Visit

When Blogger was down, my original '11 Places I'd like to Visit' article, written for May 11th, was taken away. Ugh! Now I am ornery about it, so I'm not going to re-write anything. Just know that these are the places I would like to visit someday...

1) Barbados

2) New Orleans, Louisiana

3) Vermont (in the fall)

4) Banff Springs Hotel (Canadian Rockies)

5) Switzerland

6) Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

7) Neuschwanstein Castle

8) Mall of America

9) Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios

10)French Riviera


Oh...and if you've been to any of these places, please leave a comment and tell me about it.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Talking Dog

If you do not think this is cute and/or funny, something is wrong with you.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Musing Over Mother's Days Past

(This one was from Casey. He was obviously into poems.)

Love this part!

By the looks of Casey's name, this had to have been when he was in Kindergarten.

Special little decorative hearts along Katelyn's name.

Cody working on his braille machine...Cute!

I guess I sing too much? haha

Friday, May 6, 2011

Water Park Mishap with a Special Needs Child

Don taught Cody, our son with special needs, to swim when he was around 4 years old by having him hold on to his back. They looked kinda like this (only in water)...

Swimming with our children and teaching them to be comfortable in water was important to Don and I. When they were younger, we would frequent this indoor water park, Splash!...

The facility had a wave pool and a nice water slide. We loved it.

Cody was around ten years old when Don and I decided we should let him go down the slide by himself. After all, if one of us took him to the top and the other one waited for him at the bottom, nothing could possibly go wrong, right?

Wrong. Cody got to the second big turn going down the slide and almost flew out. He was too light. In fact, the only thing that saved Cody was the fact that the water didn't quite lubricate the side of the slide and he got stuck. Cody just sat there.

Panicking, I ran past everyone in line and up to the platform where Don and the lifeguard stood. Don and I began yelling "Scoot Cody! Scoot! Scoot!" We looked something like this, except I was hysterical (and I don't mean funny)...

Cody "scooted" until he was back in the flowing water. He went on down the slide, oblivious to the fact that he was ever in danger.

To this day, I prefer enclosed water slides.

The pictures of 'Splash!' belong to Paul Lane. Our family is not in any of them, but the facility is the same.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Como Se Dice "Don't Break My Routine" en Espanol?

Cody loves holidays AND speaking Spanish, therefore, I think it's appropriate to air out my archives and share the following experience, originally posted October 4, 2010.

When Cody was in high school, he chose Spanish as one of his electives. He enjoyed it so much that he took it his sophomore, junior and senior year.

Every day, at the beginning of the period, the entire class would, in unison, say the alphabet in Spanish. One particular day, this important part of the routine was skipped. Cody became upset and no one could figure out why. Of course Cody would never just come out and say what was bothering him. By the end of the period, tears were streaking down his cheeks and when the bell rang, he would not budge! When the teachers and peer tutor finally figured out Cody was upset because the class didn't say the alphabet, they tried to convince him it would be okay. The class would be sure to remember to say the alphabet the next day. However, no amount of coaxing or persuading would get Cody out of that desk!

When students of the next period began to arrive, the teachers realized something needed to be done about Cody, who by this time was full on crying and causing a scene. They decided to pick Cody up, desk and all, and move him into the hall.

I don't remember what happened after that. Obviously Cody eventually calmed down and got over it, but I'm not sure his Spanish teacher ever did.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Chase Trimmed His Beard and I Didn't Think He Looked Gay Enough, So I Made Him Wear a Cowboy Outfit

(Not really. Those were Chase's words, but they made me laugh.)

We had family photo's taken May 1st. Here's a recap for those of you who are not regular readers of my blog...

The last time our family had pictures professionally taken was about twenty-five years ago. We were a family of four then; Cody was around five years old and Chase was a baby. Don and I have two more children, Casey (twenty-one) and Katelyn (nineteen), who have never been part of a professional family picture. You may be thinking "How horrible! What kind of mother doesn't want pictures taken of her family?" Well...look at the following snapshot of my kids and I think you'll understand.

Anyway...an hour before our appointment, Chase and Casey decided to complain (a lot) about the clothing Katelyn and I chose for them to wear.

Before dressing, Chase made himself (and everyone else)
laugh by putting on one of Cody's "wife beaters".

AND...about twenty minutes before we were suppose to leave the house, Cody fell asleep in the recliner!

Once we were on location, however, things went fairly well. Despite dealing with my boy's negative attitudes, gusty winds, Cody's hatred of the great outdoors, and cold temperatures, I have high hopes that our family photographs will be great. And, even if they aren't, I will cherish them forever, because I will NOT go through this again!...at least until one of them gets married :)
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