Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Happy Birthday, Daddy!!

It's my dear father's birthday today- if you talk to him, see him, or are friends with him on Facebook, please be sure to wish him a hearty "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!"

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

More Wisdom From Children's Literature

We have moved to half days in school. The fourth grade class only has one test and one “investigation” left to do, and then we’re finished for the year! It’s crazy to think so much time has gone by... It’s almost been a year since my grand ol’ Harding days. 

After our Oxford Book of Illustrated Poems was finished, I borrowed Shel Silverstein’s Where the Sidewalk Ends from the Kennell household and not a school day has passed since without a poem. Today’s poems were intense for me to read. Perhaps I’m simply emotional and connecting with these poems because of life circumstances, or perhaps I am not alone in the world and Mr. Silverstein has been able to express what’s in my heart even when I cannot. I could take the time to explain why each of these is so profound to me, but I’d rather just let you love them for what they say to you. Enjoy!

From Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein

“Just Me, Just Me”

Sweet Marie, she loves just me
(She also loves Maurice McGhee).
No she don’t, she loves just me
(She also loves Louise Dupree).
No she don’t, she loves just me
(She also loves the willow tree).
No she don’t, she loves just me!
(Poor, poor fool, why can’t you see
She can love others and still love thee.)

“The One Who Stayed”

You should have heard the old men cry,
You should have heard the biddies
When that sad stranger raised his flute
And piped away the kiddies.
Katy, Tommy, Meg and Bob
Followed, skipping gaily,
Red-haired Ruth, my brother Rob,
And little crippled Bailey,
John and Nils and Cousin Claire,
Dancin’, spinnin’, turnin’
‘Cross the hills to God knows where-
They never came returnin’.
‘Cross the hills to God knows where
The piper pranced, a leadin’
Each child in Hamlin Town but me,
And I stayed home unheedin’.
My papa says that I was blest
For if that music found me,
I’d be witch-cast like all the rest.
This town grows old around me.
I cannot say I did not hear
That sound so haunting hollow-
I heard, I heard, I heard it clear...
I was afraid to follow.”

Friday, April 16, 2010

Winding Down

Well, I’m writing this on Friday, April 16, 2010, and I leave for Accra, Ghana (where we fly out of) in 15 days. I land in Missouri in 17 days, and I get to see people in Searcy in 18! I am absolutely stunned that 8 months have gone by so quickly... Absolutely stunned. I really don’t know what to feel or think or dwell on, but I do know that I love the team/our other friends here and leaving will not be an easy thing. I’m sitting here watching my kids work on their 118th math lesson’s homework, and I’m wondering what I’m going to do without them. It’s actually making my eyes well up, so I’m going to move on and stop dwelling on it!

I’ve already packed one trunk and partially packed a second. The girls and I have made arrangements to have a Papa John’s pizza waiting for us in Atlanta when we land (thanks wonderful Cannon parents!) and my mom is bringing pillows to the airport for Sarah and I to crash on in the car on the drive home. Yesterday at ladies’ prayer time, we planned our Open House and the 6th grade girls’ tap recital. I still have to make the costumes for that beautiful event. I’m also the official slideshow choreographer, so I have a collection of pictures to put in a glorious order with fantastic music to accompany them... Maybe even a few videos. The Millers’ grandmother is coming and will be here for Open House, which is nice- I’m always happy to let family in on the goings on at school. We have a week of half days next week, which also happens to be “Spirit Week” full of dress-up days, and (surely) laughter and fun. 

I can’t see how the events of the next two weeks are going to help me say goodbye.

I love you.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Test Day Blog

My beautiful children are on Test 20 in their math curriculum. This means that for about an hour, I get to sit here, listen to my “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me” podcast, and constantly remind my kids to “Work, guys! Seriously, you need to pay attention to your test, and don’t get distracted. Please, just work...” It also means that, if I so choose, I have time to write a good blog, rather than the small and insignificant ones I’ve been giving you lately. So, here is my Test Day Blog!

The dust rolled back in a couple of weeks ago. What this means for us is that our house is very dusty. Very, very, very dusty. As in, you can see everywhere anyone’s foot has touched all over the house, even though our houseworker, Abla, mopped on Saturday. It’s something we’re getting used to, but something I’ll be very happy to not have as a part of my daily life when I move back to the States. For someone who has developed into a compulsively clean individual, it’s difficult for me to deal with the constant dust problem that we’ve had for the whole year, but especially now, when I can hardly see to the house across the street because the dust is so thick. Imagine driving through thick fog. That’s what this is, except it’s not low water particles, it’s dirt! Of course, right before the dusty came back, I had dusted all of our windows of their accumulated dust. Frustrating? I think so!

I learned to knit! Sarah taught me after we visited Tiffany’s house and the kitting-fever caught. I have to say, sitting in the living room with my roommates, with me crocheting and Sarah knitting, is scarily like a movie scene of old ladies hanging out. As Bethany put it, we looked “matronly.” Of course then you realize the movie we’re watching is Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs or Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium and the “matronly” label changes a bit.

Last week, Sarah and I went over to the Shanks’ house to have a Wallace and Gromit party with Mr. Joshua Shanks. It was marvelous! Tiffany made waffles, complete with syrup and strawberries for toppings, and we ended up trading many many recipes after the party was over and Joshua went to bed. I also got Newsies put on my computer, which is super nice because I apparently didn’t think it was necessary to bring to Africa!! Goodness, that was a nasty shock! Anyway, Tiffany and Jesse are always so welcoming and Joshua is always such a joy- I truly love going to their house.

It’s Spring Sing weekend, and as a Spring Sing junkie I’m a little sad. I really do love Spring Sing, and it’s weird to know that I’m removed from the process now. I’ve seen the Chio/DGR show on YouTube, and it looks good- I’m cheering from Togo for them to place first!! It’s weird to not know any of their competition, though... So weird.

Things I love about Spring Sing:
Glitter in the Benson
Glitter in the McInteer
Glitter in the classrooms
Glitter on the stage
Glitter all over campus
Glitter all over my room
Glitter all over my clothes
Glitter in my hair
Glitter on people who aren’t even in Spring Sing’s faces :)
Glitter in every bathroom near the Benson
Ensemble’s amazingness
Fast dances
Watching guys dance well on stage
Visitors on campus
The Student Center after performances
Dancing on stage in the Benson
Getting ready in a room not made for a dressing room
Our beaux and the amazing stress relief they provide
Amazing Benson stage-makeup!!!
Seeing all of the creative costumes
Knowing how much energy the directors have put into a show and seeing the show do well
Ms. Cindee and Dr. Frye
The sound Keds make on the Benson stage
The way Keds feel on the Benson stage
The finale
United We Stand... I cannot believe I’m missing that song

Anyway, I feel silly making a list like that, but I wanted to, so I did. I am sad, but I’m happy to be where I am, so I’m good. Today after school, the sixth grade girls and I have dance class- we’ve almost finished our Rockin’ Robin dance, and I’m excited to finish it completely. It doesn’t replace Spring Sing in my life, but it does go far in making me feel ok about missing this weekend in Searcy. Love you, girls!!

Other random tidbits: I made chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream from a Ben and Jerry’s recipe... And it was AMAZING! We finally visited the seamstress who was doing a lot of stuff for us, and I now have some really cute new stuff. My mom and grandmother both had surgery within the past two weeks- both surgeries went well, and both Mom and Grandma are doing well. Last night at the Hangen’s house, we watched a show called “Top Gear” and it was hilarious- I feel I must have BBC access in my life. I’ve often wondered why I wasn’t born British, and I think I’ve come to an answer- if I had been born there, I wouldn’t love the accent as much as I do. Seriously. I’ve been having the most random dreams- I’ve dreamed about extensive remodeling in the Honors House and a spontaneous color guard show at a JC homecoming. Bethany’s parents are going to meet us at the airport in Atlanta with PIZZA!!!!! There are some lizards that have decided that they should live on the stairs we have to walk on every time we go to our apartment- they are providing a lot of stress in my life. I have a stye- it hurts. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is adorable, and one of my new favorite children’s movies. I am applying at Barnes and Noble for the summer/fall- cross your fingers.

I hope everyone is doing well- I’m sorry these posts are becoming so few and far between. I started writing this blog last week, though, so know I’m trying! 


This is a picture of me with our apartment pliers. I used them to change the gas can you can kind of see behind me. Also, note the super short hair!