Sunday, August 28, 2011

THE HAPPIEST PLACE ON EARTH

**Beware, there is a lot of bragging in this post**

Last Thursday, my friend Jaime and I went to Busch Gardens.  After Tuesday's earthquake and the impending Hurricane Irene, we figured Thursday was a great day to go.  Jaime took the day off work even!

We left Alexandria at about 8:00am, had zero traffic on a beautiful sunny morning, and arrived in Williamsburg at about 10:15am.

The first thing we did was go on the Loch Ness Monster. It's tradition.

After that, we had the MOST PERFECT DAY AT BUSCH GARDENS EVER!   There were no lines.  For several rides, we just walked up and got either on the car that was there or the next one that came in.
Seriously!  We did each ride once and our favorites twice.

Back in 1992, I went to Busch Gardens a few days before I started 6th grade.  I was ten, almost eleven, and I had shoulder-length blonde hair in a green synthetic scrunchie.  After going on the Roman Rapids about a million times (I think it was the Newest ride in 1992), we noticed that my blonde hair was green under the scrunchie. I didn't care, figuring that it would wash out when I got home.  It didn't.  My mom didn't want to dye my hair so we cut it.  And then cut it again.  I looked a boy.  It's still something that haunts me!!  ha!  So, you can imagine my panic when Jaime and I wandered into a store in Italy and saw this scrunchie:
Nooooooooo!!!!!

It was such an awesome day.  I had so much fun on all the roller coasters.  I laughed mostly, roaring laughter!  Until one.

I had been on all the rides at BG except for one.  Griffon. I was legitimately nervous waiting for Griffon just because I didn't know what to expect.  When we got on it, my heart was beating out of my chest.  When we started to make our ascent, and I couldn't see the track anymore, it beat even faster.  Then it happened.  Watch what happens when the coaster reaches the top of the 90 degree drop:
video
 IT STOPS!!  IT HOLDS YOU OVER THE DROP, STARING AT YOUR DOOM!!!   I screamed so loudly and so genuinely that I still have a scratchy voice three days later.

It was the best day at Busch Gardens.  One for the record books for sure.

EARTHQUAAAAAAKE

Yeah, we had an earthquake last Tuesday.  I was at my school and we were interviewing a new 4th grade teacher.  Our school is very close to the road so sometimes when big trucks come by, it's loud and things shake.  So, when the table started shaking, I figured that's what it was.  But when it didn't stop, and I heard the filing cabinets in the next room shaking, I realized we were having an earthquake.

Fortunately, I grew up watching Saved By The Bell (where life lessons abound) so the first picture that flashed in my mind was A.C. Slater jumping to avoid the lockers and getting in the doorway.  So I yelled to everyone in our room, "Doorway! Doorway!"  Luckily, Mrs. Belding wasn't stuck in our elevator having a baby.

Things shook for about 35 seconds.  It was nuts!   We weren't even sure what happened.  But I got on facebook and I wasn't the only one who felt it.  Crazy!!

Here's the damage at my house:

Newspaper holders knocked down in Arlington.

Candles that fell off my tv.

Murphy took cover.



Head Nods

This post has nothing to do with summer.  It's a musing.  And I realized in talking about it with my friend Jaime, that I REALLY feel passionately about it.

There are two types of Head Nods that guys can do.  The "Sup" and the "Ma'am".  I filmed myself performing each of these so you can see them.  


The "Sup" is what "cool guys" do.  It's not really a greeting.  It's not even really acknowledging someone else.  It's borderline aggressive and seems ready to fight.  I'm not a fan.  Saying "SUP" to someone doesn't make you awesome.

video



The "Ma'am" is a little more cowboy.  It's much more respectful, as the head goes down instead of up.  It's modest.  Think about a cowboy doing it, not me...


video


Thank you, Ma'am!  What's your preference?

Pool Mooch Extraordinaire.

I should get business cards printed up with that on it!

I mean, really.  I found my way to pools this summer without spending a dime.  I love my friends for sharing!!

Here are some shots...

I started out in my yard in my beloved chair.  

 Then my friend Jaime's pool on the Potomac beckoned me...

 Then my friend Micah's pool was amazing...

My friend Kelly worked at a pool and she invited me to play, too...

Ironically, I don't have a picture of the pool where I spent the most time.  But that's probably a good thing because I used a code to get in that only residents of that pool are supposed to have.  
Top Secret information.  

And a sweet tan :)

So Long Sweet Summer (again?!)

I can't believe another one is gone.   And I barely blogged at all.  I'm sorry!   I was thinking today about why I didn't blog as much this summer as I did last summer... and I think it's because I've been on Facebook a lot more.

So, to celebrate the end of summer, how about an end-of-summer phone dump?  And I'll insert explanations where necessary and you'll be all caught up and then I can get to the random thoughts I've had this summer.

Packing up the trailer room for the Last Time!  Heading into the building... (this was taken on the last day of school)

 I drank this on the last day of school...

 My Pup came to visit and he always has better taste in music than I do, so I asked him to make me some mixes.  Love him.

 For many days this summer, I got up and went to a pool.  (Post on that coming)  But I took this picture of myself one day for no reason and then I ended up kind of liking it because it was different.

 The cutest fluffiest dog in the world before she got a terrible haircut.

 The sweetest smiling face.

 To celebrate the release of the last Harry Potter movie, my friend made this onesie for her sweet baby girl.  If you know Harry Potter,  you'll giggle :)

 ???????  DONG BARBER ??????  

I got DOWN on some crabs at this beautiful place right on the Potomac.

I made a trip to Massachusetts in the middle of the summer for some Responsive Classroom training.  The trip was amazing.  We went to the Yankee Candle flagship store (it's HUGE).  I saw these candles.  They made me laugh.

Even doors need to watch out, sometimes...

I was grateful enough to go on a beautiful boat ride one evening...

 Lincoln from the water! 

Made a trip to IKEA one day... loved this lady enjoying Mary Poppins in the privacy of her own living room...

Helping my friend Kelly look for a full-length mirror was fun and egotistical. 

Pheebs did some light reading this summer.

Nats/Mets game.  Of course I wore my Red Sox hat.  No one yelled at me like the Phillies game.

At least you know this place is good...

 More reasons why Justin Timberlake is my soulmate...

 It was so hard to get out of bed some summer morning when this was the face that stayed snuggling...

Uh oh.  Look what they are building in the shopping center next to my house.  TROUBLE.

The world's sweetest legs on a walk around my neighborhood.


It was a good summer!    Now for some more specific posts...

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Coming Soon...

This book is outstanding.  And I'm rereading it this summer and it's changing my thinking about a lot of things.

Coming soon... the blog may be shifting a little to a focus on my being a well-balanced teacher.

Coming sooner (yes, I know that's not a word)... what I've done in August.  It's been a blog-free month!

I'll be back in the swing of things soon.