Monday, November 22, 2010

Random cools

Here's some of the random of today:

1. Short day at school! Principals gave us the "Gift of Time" so when the students left at 1:00, so could we. I drove right to the grocery store and got all the things I need for Thanksgiving.

2. After I unloaded the groceries, I went upstairs to catch up on my blog-reading. Here is the weirdest thing. I turned on an episode of Dexter (my new obsession, thanks to COUNTLESS recommendations) and I was lying on my belly with a pillow under my head watching. Then I think I touched my tooth or something because I woke up 20 minutes later with my hand in my mouth. (??) I also rolled over and took a 4 hour nap. FOUR HOURS!?! Either I was actually exhausted, my body really need it, or I'm catching coma naps from MCubed. At any rate, when I finally woke up and rolled downstairs, I actually felt awesome. Way to go, coma nap! But will I fall asleep tonight? This remains to be known...

3. I skyped with Mom today on her birthday :) and I also skyped with Joy, Kevin and Owen! Kevin was sweet enough to take Owen out of his snuggly carrier so I could see his cuteness. Oh my gosh, he is SO cute! I just can't wait to go see him. I'm trying to go out there on December 5th. It was really nice to see Owen's parents, too. They look wonderful and I miss them. Can't wait to see the whole Ackert fam.

4. Lou and I watched "Oprah's Favorite Things" tonight. This year, because Opes is in her last season, she decided to do TWO Favorite Things episodes. The first one was great. I always watch these episodes sitting on the ground, close to the TV so I can feel like I am part of it. I saw more women and men cry, lose their cool, drop to the ground, and I SWEAR (check the DVR!!) I saw a man run into a wall in absolutely ecstasy. He ran into a wall. Like he just couldn't control himself. It was amazing. So, the first episode was awesome. I was watching it and she just kept giving away amazing thing after amazing thing. And I love this show and the giving spirit. At one point, she was giving away this amazing hair care line. My mouth was hanging open but then I got SUPER impressed when one of the parts of the hair care line was this little make-up pencil for hair so that you can touch up your roots. My jaw dropped open completely and Lou burst out laughing. She's been doing this a lot lately. She laughed and said, "I can't believe how much you just lost it over something you have absolutely No use for." true story. But it was still cool! I guess the number of people waiting to get on the first show was huge, so the Oprah show had to turn some people away. But they brought them all into the studio and surprised them with a 2nd favorite things show (which I personally think was better than the first). It was amazing. And the audience was filled with do-gooders and people who spend their lives giving back, so they were all so deserving and humble. Lou and I both got a little teary when this older woman just mouthed out to Oprah (who definitely couldn't see her) "thank you".

5. I'm starting to get some ideas together for 2011. Grand plans for my 30th year of life.

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Happy Birthday, Mom. I love you a lot.

You found an ad in the paper for a black cockapoo last year, so you came up and we went to go get her. You helped me pick out my best friend and we discovered that she makes a nice hat. You stayed here with me through her first couple of puppy days and I cried when you left because I wanted you to stay.

We can really tear up some weddings. Here's us at Anne's...

And then gettin' down to Justin Timberlake at Jess and Jay's. I also think we did the Justin Timberlake routine at Liz and Dan's wedding.

This is my favorite picture of the girls...

And the birthday card from my 3rd grader... he wanted you to have a good day and just to remind you of what I hope to be.

Love you, mom! Happy Heinz Birthday!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

You have no idea... true my horoscope was today. It's shocking. And I had a hard part with my mission. One part was not true, though. I wasn't wrong. I was right. But then sometimes I was rude. So I did apologize for that.

You want to make things better, and you're ready to give in and admit you were wrong -- this time -- if they'll agree to a couple of teeny, tiny 'conditions.' For example: 1) There will be no more pouting when you offer suggestions about how to make something better. 2) There will be no more pouting when it turns out that you're right. Your mission: Present your suggestions without even a hint of criticism in your tone.

More Proof

Yes, she's my dog. I was watching Ellen the other day and Nelly came to sing this song so Ellen could dance. I wanted to dance, too, so I got up. Then Phebe wanted to dance, too. When the video ends, you'll see me run over and turn it off because my roommate came home and how embarrassing!

Also, yikes, is that what I look like when I dance? What am I, teaching jazzercise? It would be different if I was actually an instructor, but I have no excuse for bouncy dancing. Sigh...

My Tree

So here are more pictures with my favorite tree in them... I have some sad news. I think that beautiful tree is going to be taken down. Our school is going to be getting a new wing next year and it's going to go straight through that tree. Isn't that the saddest thing? But I will enjoy this tree as much as I can. It's the best tree for showing the seasons... we see gorgeous yellowy orange leaves in the fall, we watch them fall off and see the bare tree in winter. We know that spring is arriving when we see the buds, then school's almost out when it's full of leaves again. I love this tree...

1... 2... 3!


I have a few teacher friends who are into Harry Potter even more than I am. One made butterbeer cupcakes!! And the other wore her Gryffindor scarf all day on Friday. I Love this about them.

My favorite quote of the day was when my student saw her scarf and said, "Oo! Redskins colors!" She said, "No, I'm not a Redskins fan, this is a Gryffindor scarf."

Then quietly she said to me, "Man, it's hard to be Gryffindor in D.C."

Love it.

Monday, November 15, 2010

An Actual Meehander...

So, this blog is called the meehanderings and I do a lot more sharing of information that actual meandering, thinking, processing, musing, observing...

So here's my Meehander for today: I think that Rudeness should be outlawed.

Why be rude? Why be rude for spite? It just invokes more rude.

Where did this meehander come from? The damned Blue Car.

There is a "neighbor" that lives on another street who parks his damned Blue Car literally in front of our house. Why? He could park it nearer to his house. I think he likes to get under our skin. It makes me feel angry. Why should I care? Because I do. Because it's rude. There are some things you shouldn't do. He knows we have a houseful of people and if he only parked on the other side of the street, he wouldn't be putting any of us out.

My blood boils when I see him. My face grumps when I see his stupid pretentious blue car in front of our house. It makes me want to do really catty things. I want to block him in. I want to leave a note. One time I gestured toward his house. These are not lovely colors in me.

At this point, it's plain Justice. I don't like that stupid car in front of my house because he does things like: park so that no one can parallel park behind him-- leaving 3/4 of a space directly in front of our house, he also leaves his car there for a lot of the weekend and we have frequent house guests.

It's annoying.

In the grand scheme of things, is it a big deal? No. But it's rude. And I can't stand it. I can't stand rudeness for NO reason! At least have a reason other than self-absorption.

I've seen him. He's not friendly. He knows what he's doing is wrong and he avoids eye contact. Guess what? He won't avoid eye contact next time I see him. See, he doesn't realize that I'm a problem solver and he is a Problem.

I'm going to solve him. Maybe I'll be diplomatic. I'll try not to throw rocks.

Lou says we've got to fight back with funny. I agree. We have grand plans for funny and his car. We'll make him his own "designated" parking space (Justin Bieber Lovers Parking Only, anyone?). We literally came up with a list of things to prank him... but they have to happen soon or I might not be able to control my Problem Solving...

My meehandering is that Rude is Terrible. Rude makes more Rude. Blatant Rude doesn't even make normally not rude people want to take the high road.

I want him and his stupid car to meander far, far away from my house.

In the meantime, we'll start constructing that car port....

Sunday, November 14, 2010

It's her, y'all!

It's Paula Deen, y'all!

She was hilarioussssss. So full of herself, sassy and didn't cook a lick. Her husband and another chef cooked a ham (shocker), some "dressing" (stuffing to those of us from Virginia and the north), and even an ooey gooey butter cake. Paula just talked and entertained.

She's something else...

Decorating with Seasons

I had a Pampered Chef Party at my house on Saturday. It was a sweet mix of work friends and home friends.

I did some decorating before the show. Phebe and I went on a long walk and did some collectin'...

The Pampered Chef stone pie plate!

Another pie plate!

The Pampered Chef pizza stone!

It was a beautiful day for a gathering and it was fun to have work friends over! :)

In Love with Fall...

I'm in Love!

With a season....

This is my favorite tree at school... when the leaves fall off, I let my students play in them.

This is a tree in my next door neighbor's yard. All those gorgeous leaves will be in my yard soon...

The side of my house and another neighbor's tree...

Pretty red tree peeking past the evergreen in my yard...

Scarlet in the driveway, and some of the colors across the street...

All the leaves already in our yard and my yard work "helper"...

Phebe LOVES leaves... she thinks they are toys...

Fortunately, while I was raking, I could distract her...

She tried to take credit for raking this pile...

Dirt on the nose means she was digging a hole in my yard somewhere... grrr...

She is so pretty. Also, look at the leaves that fell WHILE I was raking... sigh... : )

More help from Pheebs...

Some really cute burrowing...

We Love Fall over here. And it's been the most gorgeous Fall in years... the leaves are really hanging on!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Third Grade Royalty

Oh man...

In math right now, we are learning different strategies to solve word problems. I have some characters in my class. They are all LOVING solving these word problems and are so SO proud of themselves when they get them right.

Case in point: today two of my boys kept solving them so quickly and accurately that I was having to come up with different number combinations to try to stump them. It wasn't working-- they were masterfully solving these problems. So much so that I finally said, "Oh my gosh, guys!" To which one boy proclaimed, "KINGS OF MATH!" and walked away.

What will you proclaim today?


Raining on my training

Well, ok, this week wasn't so easy...

Sunday evening, I met my new buddy Owen.

Monday was Math Night at school and I was literally at school from 7:45am to 7:20pm. No exercise that night.

Tuesday I walked Pheebs when I got home, but with after school club and a 6:30 meeting, I did not run.

Wednesday, I was planning to go run at the gym AND do a Pilates class... but I did not. I sat and enjoyed the company of roommates and television and went to bed early.

Today, I went to the gym RIGHT AFTER SCHOOL and Ran 1.5 miles, and walked 0.3 miles. So, that's it for this week!

Tomorrow, I am prepping my house and kitchen for the Pampered Chef party*** on Saturday.

Saturday, my plan is to go running before the party. If I get a lot done as planned tomorrow evening, I will be able to :)

Not giving up! Just sort of a tired/exhausted week...

Go Team!

*** if any readers want to come, please let me know! : )

JOYous news!!

He's here! He's here!

And he's a He!

Owen Charles Ackert was born Sunday, November 7 at 10:37am. He weighed 7lbs, 12oz and he is absolutely perfect.

Joy is doing beautifully! When I went to visit them Sunday evening, she looked AMAZING! Not like someone who had given birth 8 hours earlier!

It's such JOYous news! Joy and Kevin are now at home with their new little friend, learning and loving being a family.

Holding him, watching him, oh my goodness... it's not surprising that Aunt Cait fell in love... I'm so excited to get to know him. From those parents of his, he's going to be an awesome little man.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Bark twice if you're in Milwaukee

Well, Phebe was caught watching tv tonight. And not just any old show. She was glued to the tv while Ron Burgundy was talking to his dog, Baxter, in the movie Anchorman. Anchorman!!

She's definitely my dog. :)

I'm not even mad... that's amazing...

Weekend 5K training

Ok, well...

Saturday at noon, I was at the gym and I ran 1.5 miles on the treadmill. With the warm up and cool down, I did over 2 miles. yahoo!

Today, I was supposed to walk for 30-60 minutes. I was planning to do it at dusk with Pheebs, when I could take pictures of the beautiful trees in our neighborhood. But something wonderful happened today and I spent my evening not walking but traveling.

And I don't regret not walking for this wondrous event! More details soon.

I'll walk tomorrow :)

One year and a long way to go

I have a good dog. But she has a long way to go to be a Very good dog. But it just takes some patience and some time (and the training classes we are starting in December). Now, when I come home, she waits for me-- sitting. She'll sit until I give her a little snuggle. Sometimes she gets too excited during the snuggle and jumps and I am ignoring that behavior and only giving her snuggles when she sits down.

Look how much bigger she is than the first day I got here... same place... same dog... 1 year earlier...

Friday stories

I went to the post office on Friday. My post office is like a secret gem. It's usually empty and the employees are nice! When I went this time, I saw a big jar of candy on the counter with a sign on it that said "This Candy is for Children ONLY!!". I remarked to the man helping me, "That's really sad that you have to put that sign on there!" He said, "Yes it is. The reason we have to do that is because there is an older gentleman who supplies the candy. He had been bringing it for years and then he stopped for a few weeks. We found out that he had fallen and broken his hip. I went to the store and bought exactly what he usually brought. It was $58 worth of candy! We knew he was on a fixed income, so now we have a little envelope in the back where people can give a dollar and whenever he comes in, we're going to give him that money toward the candy we know he'll be bringing in."

I didn't have a dollar, but I will definitely bring one next time!

Also, while we were talking, I asked for 10 stamps. I didn't specify. When I got home, I found that my friendly post office helper had given me....

BOB HOPE STAMPS! hahaa. :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Officially caved...

I didn't want to like him.

He smokes.

He drinks at work.

He cheats on his wife.

He leads a weird double half life.

I didn't see what all the fuss was about.

I watched the first season, mildly impressed by him but more impressed with the depiction of the times.

I watched the second season, angry at him for making poor choices and still impressed with the depiction of the times.

I just started the first disc of the third season and I'm officially hooked and in love.

Don Draper, you are a bad ass and I don't care who knows it.

Simple Love...

One of my amazing 3rd grade boys made this birthday card for one of my amazing 3rd grade girls today...

This kind of love is amazing...

Mixed together. :)


Ok, so here's the week's 5K training update:

Monday, I rested and planned.

Tuesday, I ran 1.5 miles with Phebe and it was oh my.

Wednesday, I went to the gym with Kelly and walked 2 miles at 4.3 mph (techically a jogging pace, according to the machine, but I just power-walked it)

And today, Thursday, I met Kelly at the gym after school and ran 1.5 miles at in 16 minutes (a little over 1o minute miles).

Friday is my rest day and I will take it. :) So... all in all... good start.

Next week will be a challenge because I have more things in the evenings next week (Math Night at school Monday, after school club and an appointment Tuesday, dinner with a friend on Thursday). But I'll find time. I made this commitment.

Go Team!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Are you curious if I ran today? I was supposed to do 1.5 miles.

Guess what?

I did it!

Not very well. I decided to run around my neighborhood using this AWESOME tool that my friend Kristin told me about. Google Map Pedometer You can use the trail markers to mark out a route wherever and it gives you the mileage! She's the coolest for sharing this.

So, I mapped out my usual walking route with Phebe and it turned out to be 1.5 miles. So I decided to run it today. But here's my problem. My neighborhood is CRAZY hilly. So, I almost died. And I walked twice.

Next time, I'll run in the gym on the treadmill while I'm building up my endurance. Also, Phebe wasn't the best running buddy. She likes to stop and smell things. I need to do this on my own and walk her after.

Day 1: run 1.5 miles. Check. Two walks, but I ran up two giant hills so it all balances out.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Ode to Wiig

I. Love. Kristen. Wiig. I am about to make a very bold statement: She is my Favorite SNL female. Ever.

Enjoy. Every time I watch these, I literally scream with laughter:

Ok, 5K.

I'm embarking on a journey. It'll be a quick one but it's coming at a very necessary time. Very early in the morning on Saturday, December 4, I am going to run a 5K race with the Girls on the Run. I will be running with one of my 3rd graders. : )

But it's time to get my butt into gear. I'm putting it on my blog because I need to be accountable. I'm telling you, the (maybe) 6 of you who read this, that I am going to start a running program.

I have about 5 weeks.

Here's the schedule for this week. I will be posting each day I have something to do.

Monday: Rest (today). I mean, I had to have a day to make this plan, for pete's sake.
Tuesday: Run 1.5 miles at gym for accuracy, then drive walking routes in neighborhood measuring for distance (plus phebe walk)
Wednesday: Rest or Run/Walk. I will be run/walking at the gym with Kelly
Thursday: Run 1.5 miles (plus phebe walk)
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Run 1.5 miles (plus phebe walk)
Sunday: 30-60 min walk (with pheebs!)

Ok! Here goes! I don't want that 3rd grade girl to be held back because of me!