Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A Possum, a frog, and a mouse

No, it's not the beginning of a dirty joke...or a clean one either.  I am referring to my interactions of these animals over the past few weeks. 

First, the possum.  A couple of Sundays ago, I went outside and noticed that something had been in our trashcan and torn up the trash bag to find something good to eat, I suppose.  I went over to clean it all up and as I went to push the empty trashcan from a leaning position to an upright position, I saw a possum in the bottom of this trashcan and he just looked up at me.  I didn't stick around long - jumped back, said a few choice cuss words and went inside.  Realizing the possum wasn't getting out anytime soon, I went ahead and went about my business, waiting for Jim and Jim Jr. to wake up.  Finally, I talked Jim Jr. into taking the possum in the trashcan over to the woods to release him.  Hurray for guys!  :)

Last week, I was getting into my shower and noticed a tree frog in the tub.  He was SO cute!  He was light green with black eyes and about the size of a half-dollar (remember those?).  I was able to get him into my hands and take him outside to the flowerbed.

The mouse was not as lucky as the possum and the frog.  We had to set a trap for him last night and this morning, he was not among the living anymore.  He was pretty ugly.  He had some nasty long teeth!  YUCK!  Of course, I took him out to the cats and they didn't want it, but the kittens decided he was worth fighting over.  They were really funny to watch with this dead mouse.  Maybe they will take a hint and catch live ones before they get into the house!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Flight of the Bumblebee

In keeping with the musical theme of my family's blogs yesterday, I will tell you about the time I wanted to quit piano lessons. 

I started taking piano at the age of 8 from Mrs. Degenhart (sorry if this is spelled wrong) in Normal, IL.  It was just something my family did - take piano lessons.  I guess I liked playing, I never really thought about it until I got into Jr. High.  By then, we'd moved to Carmel, IN and I was taking lessons for $7 or $7.50 per 1/2 hour from a lady who was very strict, but also VERY good.  In 7th grade, I asked my folks if I could quit lessons.  Dad told me that I had to learn "Flight of the Bumblebee" before I could quit.  Somehow, I got the sheet music for this piece and talked my teacher into helping me learn it.  I did not tell her WHY I wanted to learn it, though.

Little did I know that I would fall in love with the runs on the keyboard and speed of this piece.  I mastered this piece as much as a 13 year old can master it and memorized it for my spring recital.  I loved playing this song and was pretty good at it if I do say so myself.  After the recital, I decided I really didn't want to quit.  I asked my parents if I could continue taking lessons and they said yes!  Thank goodness!  I continued taking lessons and learning "fast" pieces until 10th grade when I quit because of sports, band and after-school jobs.  I have the old, wonderful, memory-filled piano in my house now.  It's out of tune and not played nearly enough, but I love having it near me.  Maybe I'll start playing more and learn something new...or re-learn the pieces that brought me so much joy in my youth.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Shadow Puppets

This school year, Benajmin starts school at 7:20am.  This means we must leave the house by 6:15 at the latest.  Right now, the sun is just rising as we're leaving the house.  Today, as we were travelling on the interstate headed South, the sun was coming up and shining through the car, casting a shadow of our car on the cement retainer wall to our right.  Benjamin began waving his hand and then did a little shadow puppet show and then got really tickled about it.  This might be one of those things that "you had to be there", but if you know me and B, you might also get a chuckle.  ;)

The upside of leaving so early is there are rarely any backups on the interstate.  There is a lot more traffic than I expected there to be this early, but at least we're moving at a good pace.  The other upside is that I get to leave the office at 4:30 to go pick B up.  Of course, by then, there IS a lot of traffic, but we're not on a deadline to get somewhere, except home where we want to be. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Crossing Paths

Over my short life, I've crossed paths with many people - sometimes more than once.  I was thinking about that this morning and thought it would be kind of neat to see how many times we have crossed paths our current friends and acquaintances. 

See, this all started when I was in high school.  When I was a senior, I was taking a speech class and one of the guys in there gave a speech on the Cubs and said something about growing up in the midwest.  After class, I asked him where he had grown up.  He said "Illinois".  I asked him what town.  He said, "Oh, you've probably never even heard of it."  I said, "Try me."  He said, "Normal".   Of course, I told him that is where I was born.  It turns we were in morning Kindergarten, but had different teachers.  He said that he had moved after Kindergarten, so I asked him where he had lived.  He started naming a few more states and when he got to "Indiana", I stopped him and said that I had lived in Indiana for 4 years.  Turns out, we were both in Carmel at the same time, but went to two different Jr. High Schools.  And then we were in high school together in Tennessee.  We ended up going to our Sr. Prom together and hung out the summer after we graduated high school.  He came to visit me one time in college, but I have not heard from him since then. 

I also thought about meeting my 1st husband by chance.  We had both lived in Indiana at the same time, but opposite sides of Indianapolis.  We had gone to different high schools in Tennessee in neighboring towns, but we were at UTK at the same time and had been going to Belmont at the same time when we met through a mutual friend. 

And I am sure that Jim and I crossed paths at some point years ago.  Mom used to take us down to Music Row, which doesn't exist anymore.  Jim had a shop called "The Hat Closet" and I am sure we were in there or near there at least once or twice. 

Yes, I think these random thoughts a lot.  Do you have random thoughts?  ;)

Friday, August 5, 2011

1st Day of School

Benjamin's 1st day of school is today.  He is starting not only a new school in a new district, but is attending "Intermediate" school.  That means it is for 5th and 6th graders only and it's like a Jr. High with lockers and everything!  He was a bit nervous about using a locker and changing classes.  I think he was afraid they would expect him to know all about it and wouldn't help him at all.  I tried to reassure him all week that the teachers would work with him like they did in 4th grade when they started changing classes and would tell him exactly what he needed to know.

He did just fine this morning - didn't seem nervous at all until we got to the school.  I, on the other hand, got all teary-eyed after I left him there.  Thank goodness I waited until I was in the car to show my emotions. I'm sure he would have been mortified to see my tears in the school. 

So far, the experiences at the school have been positive.  Registration went great and this morning, everyone was very friendly and helpful.  I think this is going to be a good year and also a growing year.  His last school was pretty protective and I think this school will put more expectations of responsibility on him, which will be good.

Here are a few pictures of him this morning:

Thursday, August 4, 2011


My doc gave me some numbers last week.  90, 50, 184, 52, 70, and 104.  These are all GOOD numbers.  For instance, my fasting blood sugar level was 90.  That's good.  My Vitamin D level is 50.  Well, DUH!  Have you seen my tan?   HE HE!  My total cholesterol is 184, Triglycerides were 52, HDL was 70 and LDL was 104.  I have to say I am very pleased with these results.  Pleased and relieved.  I know I am not as healthy as I could be, but I do try to eat right most of the time and I have really good genes.  Thanks, Mom and Dad! 
I had some other appointments with tests run and the results they sent me said I am "Normal".  Okay, they didn't really say *I* was normal, but the results were within the normal range.  I guess if they had said I was normal, I would have probably reported them to whoever handles docs who don't know what they are talking about.  HA HA!  The only thing normal about me is where I was born, and I'm really proud of that!  :D