Sunday, March 29, 2009

Book Phase: Author Autobiographies

Reading The Art of Eric Carle beach side.

Every once in awhile, I go through a book phase. Last year, I read chef autobiographies and foodie books. Right now, I'm into author biographies, specifically autobiographies about authors of children's books. I'm currently reading Boy by Roald Dahl and The Art of Eric Carle by Eric Carle. Both interesting in their own ways. I love how the authors include tons of pictures from their childhood.

Big Berrylicious

Because we live in farm country and it's strawberry season, we decided to go in search of a local strawberry stand. We found one along our way to the next town over. My hubster asked for a sample and it was absolutely delicious, so we bought half a flat. They were the sweetest strawberries that we've ever had. I vote that they're watered with sugar water. My hubster thinks that they put whatever secret ingredient is in Girl Scout cookies that make them so addictive. Whatever it is, we're hooked!

Business Trip To-Do List

When my hubster left for his business trip last week, I asked him to do two favors for me. One: Get me a souvenir. Two: Take pictures of snow for me. No souvenir, but I did get snow pictures. One out of two isn't that bad. :)

Friday, March 27, 2009

On the Menu for School Today - Rebecca Kai Dotlich

Honestly, I've been going through a bit of a crisis of whether or not I still want to be a teacher. Maybe, it was the horrendous paper that I had to write to prove that I could teach. Maybe, it's the budget crisis that leads me to think that I might not get a job at the end of grad school. Maybe, it's the disinterested looks that my big kiddos give me even though they're actually listening. Then, I stumbled across this poem. It was like medicine for my heart.

On the Menu for School Today

Label planets
in our sky.
Learn how numbers
Count coins.
String beads.
Shake bells.
Plant seeds.
Map constellations
a flowerpot.
Say a poem.
Spell b-u-t-t-e-r-f-l-y.
Shout hello.
Wave good-bye.

Rebecca Kai Dotlich
from Falling Down the Page

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Oh Netflix, You're So Silly!

I logged onto Netflix to add Lust for Life starring Kirk Douglas as Van Gogh then the taste preferences menu popped up. There were moods listed. Here are some of the more entertaining choices to choose from:
  • Cerebral
  • Dark
  • Gritty
  • Raunchy
  • Steamy
  • Understated
Seriously, who came up with these lame categories? Sounds like some key from a mood ring.

New Obsession: Searching LIFE Pictures

Now that I have some free time, I have to find a way to fill it at least until my hubster gets home from his trip. I wanted to find some interesting pictures for my kids to analyze for their morning warm-ups. I started to browse through some of the photos from LIFE through Google. My favorites:

GOGH Vincent Van 1853-1890

Poodle or Puppy

Me: Honey, I don't know if I look completely helpless. For as long as I can remember, there were always other families adopting me.
Hubster: You don't look helpless. You're like the cute poodle. I mean puppy.
Me: Eww..why did you say poodle first? I don't want to be a poodle.
Hubster: That's why I changed it to puppy. I realized that poodles weren't cute.

To Refresh Your Memory

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Wish List


Other than wanting my free time back, the next thing on my wish list is a puppy! I want a yorkshire terrier. If we do get one, I must must have it as a puppy and not a grown-up dog. Only in my dreams though. :)

New Day

Today feels like a new day. It's funny how rare I have the feeling like a day is a new day. Often, I am carrying the burden of responsibilities not fulfilled the day before such as grading worksheets, preparing a lesson, doing my homework, or picking up my clothes. Lately, my burden has been this huge 50 page write up that I'm creating, as yet another requirement for my credential. It's a big deal. It's a big deal even though the chances of me getting a job for the upcoming academic year are slim. I started writing bright and early this morning. I feel great. I hope this will be a new day when I will get what I need accomplished for the day done. It also gets me one day closer to my hubster being home. (He's been in Colorado on business.) Cheers to the new day!

(taken September 2007)

Catch Up: Fast Food Junkie

On our drive up to the Bay area this weekend, my hubster and I played name a fast food restaurant and your favorite thing on the menu there. I rattled off of my favorites like it was nothing while he had to do some hardcore thinking most of the time. Our conclusion: We don't know how I wasn't chubby kid. Thank God for my metabolism. He had stingy Asian parents that were totally anti-junk food and artificial colors. Here are my favorite fast foods (at least from what I remember liking when I was younger):

McDonald's: Chicken mcnuggets not the chicken strips
Carl's Jr: Double bacon western cheeseburger (because it was my uncles' favorite) and chicken stars
Taco Bell: Crunchy taco supremes
Burger King: Chicken strips
Jack in the Box: Spicy crispy chicken sandwich, curly fries, and jalapeno poppers
KFC: Popcorn chicken bites
In 'n Out: Cheeseburger animal style and french fries
Pizza Hut: Breadsticks and individual mini pizzas
Little Caesar's: Pepperoni individual pizzas
Rally's: Strawberry milkshake
Sbarro: Pepperoni pizza slice
Panda Express: Veggie chow mein
Wendy's: Strawberry milkshake
Arby's: BLT

By no means is this list a representative of how we eat now. It was just a random game.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Stay (I Missed You) - New Found Glory (Lisa Loeb Cover)

Tweet Tweet for Twitter

Jove and I had an interesting conversation about the point of Twitter. I told her I'm using it because my BIL (bro-in law) got on Twitter. I also wanted another widget for my blog. :) Another reason, I learned about once I got on is that a lot of celebs are on Twitter. Every once in awhile, they actually have interesting things to say. If you don't believe me, it totally happened today when I went on to update my Twitter for the day. Check out John Mayer's update:

johncmayerBeing misunderstood is very powerful. It gives us something to strive for, a corner to fight our way out of. It's not ideal but not a loss.

If You Could Have a Super Power...

Because my hubster and I spend a bunch of our time in the car, we have started asking "If you could..." questions. One question that we've asked each other is "If you could have a super power, what would it be?" It got me wondering what my kiddos' answers would be. Here are some of their answers:
  • It would be heat vision. If I had heat vision, I would melt metal.
  • It would be to have a jaw that could extend really far. Then, I could eat food in one bite and drink a lot of water at one time. Maybe, I could set a world record for eating.
  • It would be luck. If I was lucky, I could get good grades on all my test. Then, I would have the best grades in fifth grade.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Since I've been stuck in bed and have had the luxury of surfing all of my favorite entertainment sites, I've been keeping up with the Natasha Richardson tragedy. I've only seen one of her movies, which was the remake of The Parent Trap. Thought she was positively radiant in it. I didn't know that she came from an acting/entertainment dynasty. With all the tributes out there, this one picture stood out.

It was taken with her mom in Rome during the 60s. I just thought it was an incredibly sweet photograph.

Cat's Eye View

I've been sick for the last couple of days, which is noted in my twitter to the right. Unfortunately, I don't have any uber cute stories about my kiddos to share. I have had time to wander around my favorite blogs and find new blogs.Today, I stumbled across Cooper's blog. He's a cat photographer who has a flickr and has had his first art exhibition.

From Book to Movie

In general, I'm a bit picky about movies that began as books. For instance, I remember the movie-version of The Little Prince being unimpressive. Whatever Harry Potter books I have read were totally better than the movies. Then, I stumbled across the poster for the new Where the Wild Things Are.

Where the Wild Things Are

My first thought was instantly, "Oh no! They can't make it into a movie." Then, I looked at the poster a bit more. It's a beautiful poster. It suddenly reminded me of my days watching Sesame Street and Muppet movies. It even reminded me of Fraggle Rock. Maybe, it won't be that bad? Fyi, Sendak himself consulted for the film. It's set to come out October 16th, so mark your calendars. Yay for Spike Jonze! If the poster isn't enough, here are some early pictures.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Eric Carle Has a Blog!


Eric Carle has always been one of my favorite authors. I remember The Very Hungry Caterpillar being one of the main motivators to get me reading. I just read an article in Newsweek called "The Surprising Dark Side of the Very Hungry Caterpillar." Don't worry if you're hesitant to read the article. I was too, thinking it would ruin the magic behind the book. Instead, it helps you to see how magic can come out of darkness. It's a hopeful article. Because of the article, I learned that Eric Carle has a blog and an autobiography called The Art of Eric Carle.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Catch Up: Moonstone Beach

Catch Up: One Million vs. 10 Million

My hubster and I don't live in a particularly affluent area. However, we are only a hop, skip, jump away from several very affluent areas. Unfortunately, there is definitely a clear division between the haves and the have nots. When I teach, this socioeconomic division isn't always at the forefront in my mind. Then, a moment creeped up.

(Question on the board that I wrote: What would you do with a million dollars? Why?)

Mr. LO: Mrs. T---, a million dollars really isn't that much around here?
Me: Hmmm...I suppose you're right. A million dollars could get you a house here but not a very big house.
Mr. LO: should say ten million dollars.
Me: That sounds fair. Ok. (changes question)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


Lately, I've been playing the identify the artist section on Free Rice. After playing for a bit, I've learned that J.M.W Turner is one of my favorite artists. I love the wistfulness of his sky. It always seems to feel whimsical but often there is a lingering somber tone along the horizon.

Pink Friday

This Friday is Pink Friday. Nope, we're not supporting the fight against breast cancer. This Friday is to show support for teachers, students, and schools. There are massive budget cuts on the horizon. Principals are having to lay off teachers. Supplies are getting cut even at the collegiate level. Education is the tool to help our children be prepared to take care of our society.

I am not saying this from the point of view of a teacher-to-be. I am saying it as a concerned member of this society. Children spend too much time in school to deserve mediocre instruction. They are an amazing set of little people who deserve the best in life in every possible way. Wear pink on Friday. Go to a rally. Show you care! You were a student once. Remember that amazing teacher? What if that teacher wasn't there? Would you still be the person you are today?

Miss You

This past weekend, we got to spend a lovely weekend in Cambria with our endearing old people friends. (We can totally call them old people friends because they refer to us as "the kids.") Their adorable three year old granddaughter (Told you they were old!) was with them. Here's one of my favorite conversations that I have ever overheard:

(Everyone is in the car. Granddaughter is riding in the backseat and grandma's in shot gun.)

Miss M: Grandma, I miss you.
Grandma L: Miss M, I'm right here. Usually, you say you miss someone when they're far away.
Miss M: Okay. I miss my mom.

As she said that she missed her mom, I was overwhelmed by missing my parents. Then, I began to think of who else I missed. I miss all my friends outside of the program that I haven't been able to keep in contact with. (I still have to call Alex back.) I even miss my husband when he sits next to me at home. He may be near me, but I am mentally still in my classroom planning the next day's lesson. I miss my old mentor teacher that I was with earlier this year. I know I am going to miss the mentor teacher I have now and all my friends in the program. Missing people makes my heart feel so heavy.

New Favorite Soundtrack

New Favorite Way to Waste Time

Connect-The-Dots Giraffe Tattoo

I just found a new way to waste time and avoid my heinous write-up that proves I can actually teach. There's this awesome site called Found Shit. Great name, no? (By the way, I don't know where I got that "no?" from. Maybe, it was all those years taking French. My apologies if it's annoying.) The picture of the connect-the-dots tattoo is from that site. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 5, 2009


When I was wee one, I was always that kid that never found pencils, license plates, etc. with my name on it. Today, I was browsing the school library and I found this book:,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA240_SH20_OU01_.jpg

I read it instantly. The story is adorable. It's even more adorable because the main character shares my name. Now this book is officially on my book wish list.


Lately, I've been consumed with preparing for this colossal project. Basically, it's an assessment that proves that I deserve to be a teacher. There's so much hype surrounding it that makes it intimidating. It's definitely been an uphill trek. After hearing all of my friends' stories, I can't complain. My mentor teacher has been so supportive and responsive. My kiddos are great and so sweet. For all these reasons, the song of the moment is Kanye's Good Life. I'm more blessed than I could ever deserve.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Just Throwing It Out There...

You might have to pardon the frustration in this post. I'm operating on little sleep and maximum stress.

Is it really necessary to take pictures of your family doing a good deed like handing out blankets to those less fortunate and then post them online? Did you have permission to post the pictures of those who received the blankets you handed out? Doesn't everyone deserve some dignity? Times are hard. I'm not sure that everyone wants people to know that they needed a hand-out. Just saying people deserve respect and that includes their images being used online.

Wedding Dress - Matt Nathanson

I Miss My English Lit Classes

I miss reading beautiful words to just enjoy them more than you could imagine. Now, I just teach kids how to find the beauty in words. This quotation on my iGoogle had me jonesing to sit in on a Romantic English lit class:

To see a world in a grain of sand
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.

-William Blake

I Know When...

I know when I'm having a long week when the Backstreet Boys' I Want It That Way video makes me happy. It reminds me of days lounging around in my room at my parents' house without a care in the world (perhaps I was worried about a French test). Poor Nick Carter. I wonder how it feels to have girls screaming your name for a couple of years and then having to sell tickets to your birthday party.

Tuesday Randomness

Best Name for a Bathroom Stall Company: Hiny Hiders. :)