Thursday, January 29, 2009

A sad state for our schools

I just got home from a budget crisis meeting held at Trevor's school, I don't even know where to begin. The school is in a budget crisis because of our state, nothing that the school had done wrong. I don't follow the news much (I know I should) so while I know that things in general are not good, I did not realize the impact that this unbalanced budget will be having on our schools. Long story short, the Oakley Unified School District needs to reduce their budget by almost 4 million dollars for the next fiscal year. Being new in the district, I have to say that I was very impressed with the Superintendent who did the presentation and feel very confident that our kids are at the top of the priority list as they are making decisions on what cuts need to be made. I guess it will all be public knowledge tomorrow so he did not want to go into details of how many teachers are being told that they will not have jobs for the next school year, and of course this is all based on "proposals" so they were giving us information based on information that could change tomorrow. Nothing is set in stone and the decisions that they have to make on who to give notice to can all be reversed if things to end up better than expected . . . it just makes me sad. Our kids are our future but their education is at the bottom of the list as far as the state is concerned.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Some days I love Photoshop

and some days I don't! Although the more I play the more happy days I have! Here is a before and after of a picture I took yesterday, totally on a whim, in manual mode, but forgot to change my white balance. (The pitfall of manual, always always always gotta check your settings)

uummm, yea, just a little on the blue side cause my camera was sent to indoor lighting not outdoor lighting, I guess white balance really does make a difference.

And the reason that I'm loving Photoshop today is in my trustee new book I learned that I could edit my JPEG photos in the RAW editor. That may not seem like a big deal, but after a minute or two of some simple edits I got this ~ this is way better than I could have gotten just using my levels.

now I realize that this isn't the best picture in the world, but like I said, I'm trying to learn, so when I do get that great shot and it is way to blue, I might be able to fix it!

While we were outside (and after I got my white balance problem fixed) Meghan found some bugs, yuck!

for some reason this girly love rolly pollies ~

We were actually outside waiting for Trevor to come back from walking the dog. I'm trying to do an All About Trevor layout and I wanted to get a picture of him walking down the street walking the dog, since that is a big part of what he gets to do these days. I made the mistake of telling him to let me know next time he was going out so I could get a picture, apparently that was a big mistake, because he went flying out the garage door, without telling me of course. So I went flying out the front door trying to catch him, well, he was already to the corner, laughing hysterically. So I told Meg we would hide and catch him when he came back around the corner, well we didn't hide good enough and he saw us before he rounded the corner, and if you know Meghan that shouldn't be a surprise to you! So, this is the picture I ended up with of Trev walking Max ~

I told him in 20 years when he says that I didn't love him as much as Meghan because there are so many more pictures of her than him to remember this day! Can you even see him, yes, the little dot almost in the middle of the picture, yep, that's him!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Project 365 - Week 4

I'm still taking pictures, yea!! Here are my layouts for Week 4.

Monday, January 26, 2009

It's Monday again . . .

Had a nice weekend, didn't do a whole lot which I enjoy a lot! Daryl took the kids to the show Saturday afternoon to see Mall Cop, they all really enjoyed it, even Meghan, although she really wants to see Hotel for Dogs, so I guess that will be next on our list. Although for as much as we go to the movies (and the for the price of actually going to the movies) we should just buy the DVD when it comes out, I'm sure it will only be a month or so until it's released!

Sunday afternoon I even got a nap in, I love Sunday afternoon naps, or any day naps for that matter. Daryl took Meghan to go to the pet store to get food for Max and stopped by his sisters house and ended up hanging out over there for several hours. Meghan was having a great time playing outside with her cousins and the little girls that live in their court, until the down pour anyway, but I guess all the little ones were huddled under a huge umbrella while it poured rain, then they were back to playing. Two afternoons of some quiet time, it was very nice and needed.

I've been officially released from the oral surgeon, finally. I was back and forth to the dentist all last week for them to pack my gums. When I went in on Friday she said it was my choice as to weather or not she packed it again for the weekend. Well, after my last weekend I decided to pack it one more time for good measure. She said not to worry if it fell out and I was to go back in today for them to pull it out. So yesterday it was bugging me and I figured if they were not going to re-pack it on Friday I'll just help it along and avoid one more trip to the surgeons office. Well, they didn't seem very happy that I had taken matters into my own hand and still made me come in, to make sure I got all the packing out, (duh, it's a strip of gauze all sewed together, trust me, it's all out). So I get 32 questions on how it fell out and that I could have used my little syringe to poke it back in, lalalalala . . . so the assistant looks at it and says she'll clean it out and re-pack it, NO!!!! I'm done having gauze in my mouth! So she cleaned it out, poked around a bit (ouch!) and decided to take an X-Ray, just to make sure there was nothing left . . . ok, whatever, I'm telling you, there is NO GAUZE left in there. The X-Ray confirmed what I had said all along, but hey, what do I know! So the doctor came in, suited up (cracks me up, they put on gowns, maskes, googles, gloves, all to look in my mouth for 11 seconds) and confirms that I am not in a lot of pain and that we are good to not re-pack it and that she is closing my file ~ yipee! Now I'll just continue to gargle with warm salt water (apparently I should have been doing this all along) and wait for the whole in my gum to fill up, should only take about 2 months.

Had another successful coupon trip to Raleys, it is worth it to read the ads, and a friend sent me the link to sign up for special on-line coupons from Raleys, I ended up saving 52% on what I bought today, I got all of this for $42.00

You can't tell that I had 2 gallons of milk, 7 cans of frozen juice, 4 cake mixes (those were free for buying 2 tubs of frosting), 2 boxes of cereal, cheese sticks. Even the checker commented on how much I had saved using on-line coupons and some special coupons that they had in the newspaper.

ok, time to get off the computer fold some laundry and head to bed, maybe I can get up on time and get me and Meghan out and not be late for work, yea, we'll see!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Monkey Bread . . .

is it supposed to look like this?

I think that I shouldn't have used the entire bag of rolls! I couldn't find my recipe so I looked up a few on-line and improvised, I cracked up when I looked in the oven and found one had fallen off!

Here is the recipe I used:

Monkey Bread

1 package frozen rolls (24 to be exact)
1 small package of vanilla pudding (not instant)
1 Cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
2 TBSP cinnamon
1 cube butter, melted

1. Spray the bundt pan with non stick.

2. Mix the cinnamon & sugar together and pour over the rolls while still in the bag, shake to coat.

3. Put rolls around bottom of bundt pan, pour 1/2 the pudding and brown sugar over the rolls, put another layer of rolls in pay and then the rest of the pudding and brown sugar.

4. Pour melted butter over the top. Put a damp cloth over the top and leave overnight to rise.

5. Pre-heat oven to 350 and bake for about 30 minutes.

Even though they looked funny, they were very yummy!

So after breakfast we headed off to the opening of the park by our house, finally, we've been waiting for months for this park to open, so nice that it is walking distance from our house. Trev was so excited because there is also skateboard ramps, so Cole spent the night so he could come with us to the opening too. Well, I think that they boys must have been a little, no, a lot intimidated by all the kids there, they didn't even go near the ramps!

Meghan decided that the washers needed to be tightened while we were walking home, too funny!

And I didn't get any pictures of the boys at the park, I guess I was to busy trying to keep up with Meghan! But here they are cleaning off their shoe because they decided to climb the dirt hill in the BMX area, well, since it's been raining for the last several days it was pretty muddy. Trev wore his brand new "white"shoes . . . ummm . . . yea, he must be 12!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Trevor!

I can't believe that Trevor is officially 12! We had a low key celebration tonight, we were going to go out to dinner but ended up at Mimi & Grampie's for yummy ribs and pasta, thanks for having us over, Cole came with us too!

We had dinner, opened presents and then had pie and ice cream, Trevor's request, I would have picked Chocolate Cake!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Project 365 - Week 3

Project 365 pictures from January 12th - January 18th

Inauguration Day

I noticed this flag, tied to a steak in a vineyard that I drive by everyday, last week and have been wanting to stop and take a picture of it. I don't know what it is but it catches my eye every time I drive by it, something about the American Flag, hanging in a not so common place, I thought that it would be the perfect picture for today.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Back to the dentist

So it ends up that needing to take about 40 motrin over the course of 2 days means that there IS something wrong and that I should have called the oral surgeon on Saturday and not suffered all weekend. Well, now I know. I have been in terrible pain since I woke up Saturday morning, I guess I lost the blood clot that protects the where the tooth was extracted, that equals PAIN! So they packed it (which was more painful than the pain I'd been in all weekend) with some packing material, I get to go back on Wednesday for them to re-pack and then again on Friday to do it one more time. At least I haven't had to take anything for the pain, aahhhh feeling so much better. I just have to keep poking the packing back into the socket, fun.

So the boys, Trevor & Daryl and Cole & Scot went to the Warriors Game today as part of Trevor's birthday, he picked doing that over having a party. I sent the camera and there were about 35 pictures taken, 12 of them were of the score board, but hey, at least I have a few pictures to document their day!

Trevor took this picture of the "Wonder Bread" truck and asked that I put it on my blog . . . not sure why he took this picture or why he wanted me to put it on my blog, but here you go Trev!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Happy Birthday . . .

to Mimi and Grampie. Mimi's is today and Grampie's was on Friday!!!

I'm sure I'll be in trouble for posting this picture, I took it last month, and of course mom doesn't "like it". But since she doesn't ever like pictures of herself, I'm taking the chance and posting it. This is supposed to go on their church web-site. I thought that this picture actually turned out really good!

Happy Birthday!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Errand Day

Today ended up being run errands day, Trev and I went to about 6 places I think and Daryl and Meghan did the Winco trip for me, here are all the receipts of the places we went

I actually didn't spend very much money! I got a great deal on cereal at Raleys, .50 a box! and just about everything else I got there was on sale. At Wal-Greens (I really dislike that store, but great deals are to be had there) I got toothpaste for .24! Can't beat that. I got quite a bit of stuff at Longs too, everything of course on sale, had some coupons and a $25.00 gift card that Daryl "won" at work, so I only spent $2.74 there! It's kinda fun to look at the ads each week and see what kind of deals are out there. I've been using a web-site called Coupon Mom, the web-site matches the weekly store coupons with the weekly newspaper coupons, which makes it really easy to find what you need and then actually use the coupons. I find the best deals at Wal-Greens of all places. And the double benefit is that I am not going to my favorite T store as much which then also saves me money. I even buy another newspaper on Sundays (Daryl just loves that we have to find one after church every week!) but for some reason the SF Chronicle has better coupons than the Times does, and on the stuff that they have the same coupons for can really pay off as you can see with the cereal I got.

I did 2 more Project 365 layouts last night, here they are, hoping to get 2 more done tonight and then I will be almost current! oh, and I remembered that I have my own font with my handwriting, so I decided that I will use my font for all my journaling, kinda like having my cake and eating it too! I can journal on the computer but it's still in my writing! Love that.

And today my tooth (or I guess lack of) has been killing me, I woke up at 6:00 to horrible pain, so far today I've taken 16 motrin, I hope this is just part of the healing process and nothings wrong, but it hasn't hurt this bad until today ;-(

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Project 365 - Weeks 1 & 2

is off to a good start. It's the 15th and I only missed a day of photo taking! But, considering it was the day I had my tooth pulled I'm not worried about it, I took a picture today I'll use as a reminder of yesterday anyway (and no, it's not the rest of the tooth the dentist pulled out! Although he did ask if I wanted to keep it!)

So, here are the first few pages scrapped, I'll get the next 2 weeks scrapped this weekend.

I found a really cute kit that I'm going to use for the year at Weeds and Wildflowers I think this will be a very simple way to just get this project done and not over think the process and supplies. I did make a few templates of my own, so I will use some of those mixed in with these. I'm excited to see the album that I will have completed in another 350 days. Now that I have a plan of how my album will be I'm hoping to keep up on this weekly if not daily, most weeks anyway!

ok off to find some more advil and head to bed.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tooth #18

is now a big fat red X on my dental records! Unfortunately when I went into the dentist yesterday he took a very brief look at it and while shaking his head informed me that it was a lost cause. I had prepared myself for this, this tooth has given me grief for many years now, in fact I talked them out of pulling it about 6 years ago. And because of the fact that I had already had a root canal my regular dentist didn't want to the procedure, so he referred me to an oral surgeon. I went upstairs to the oral surgeons office and they said that they couldn't see me for a consultant until February 11th! I wasn't thrilled with that but I made the appointment and headed off to work. As soon as I got to work the office called me to said that she had a cancellation and she was thinking that maybe she could get me in for the consult AND do the surgery today. She couldn't promise that he would do the surgery today, but told me to come prepared, no eating, bring someone with me . . . so I went in not knowing if it would be just the consult or if they would actually do the procedure. On top of that I had a meeting this afternoon at work so I HAD to go back, which means that they couldn't knock me out, which is fine, I would not have wanted to be if it wasn't really necessary. My dentist warned me that the oral surgeons like to put you out because that is how they are used to doing, but he didn't feel I really needed to be.

So after a few questions he took a look at my tooth and agreed to pull it today! It was a pretty quick, I was in out out of the surgery room within 30 minutes. I could feel it a tiny bit and it's weird to think that they were pulling the entire tooth out. It's good that it's out, it was cracked and very badly decayed, so, this is definitely messing up the dental work plan for the year, so now I'll have to see where we stand. On top of the 3 crowns that I already needed, Dr. Dupree wants to pull the crown off of tooth 17 to make sure that the same thing isn't happening with that tooth too. So, now I need 4 crowns at about $1000.00 each.

So, that was my day, I did make it back to work for my meeting, so all is well!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

40 IS the new 20!

So, you always hear that 40 is the new 20, 60 is the new 40, right? Well, I found a picture today that made me believe that 100%.

This is a picture of my grandparents on my parents wedding day. This is how I always remember my grandparents looking. But, what I realized today is that my grandmother is, in this picture, MY age!!! According to a little bit of research I've done, I believe that she was born on August 25, 1924, and this picture was taken on August 22, 1965, so if I've done my math right, she is 41 years old! Now I'm a believer, 41 is the new 21!!!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

It's FINALLY Friday!

This was a loooong week, so glad it's over! And it was Bunko night, yipee! Bunko was at Mom's and we had yummy Won Ton Soup and Chinese Chicken salad and lots of goodies on the table to munch on. So good I even lost a tooth, uuggghhhh . . . my teeth problems never seem to end! I just finished two appointments in 2008 and still need 3 crowns in 2009, will probably get 2 of them, I will then be maxed out on my insurance so I'll get the 3rd next January. The problem is the tooth I lost was on the good part of my mouth! It has already had a root canal and crown, they had to do a crown lengthening about 5 years ago because it had broke, but anyway, I thought I was good. This week I've had a really bad cramp on the right side of my mouth, I figured it must have had something to do with the work they did last week, propping my mouth open and all, and the tooth on my left side felt a little loose to me, but I kept talking myself out of it, well, apparently it was loose! One bite of a chewy candy and it popped right out. So, if you get grossed out easily, don't look at the next picture! (it's not really gross, well, Trev thought it was pretty gross in real life!)

I'm REALLY hoping that they can just plaster it back in and be done! It's just not in the dental budget this year to have anything else done with my mouth.

I took my camera to bunko so I could take my picture for today and didn't take a single picture, I thought it would be fun to have a bunko picture for every month this year, well, I guess the tooth will have to do for this month and I'll try again next month. And I didn't even win anything, I was on a really good loosing streak, with only one more round to go I only had 5 wins, and wouldn't you know it I then won 6 in a row! Putting me right down the middle, which never wins anything!

In other news, this was about the mood of my darling daughter last night at dinner (don't you just love the hair? She did it herself and didn't want me taking pictures of it)

and it didn't get any better than this. After she had been put to bed multiple times I told her that if I had to go up there one more time I was taking her iPod, she wasn't happy about that and persisted in misbehaving. The next time I went up I did indeed take away her iPod and Dad ended up coming in and then took her Leapster away. How the heck to you discipline a child while she is laughing at you? Anyway, yet one more time she comes down the stairs, this time with a piece of notebook paper with her scribbles of "writing" on it. I gave her the look and asked what she was doing down here. The conversation went something like this:

Meghan: I wrote something for you

Me: what does it say?

Meghan: I live in a crazy house, I have a crazy muder who takes away my iPod, I have a crazy dad that takes away my Leapster, I have a crazy broder who lets the dog in my room and he pee'd all over the carpet (this part is NOT true!), I live in a crazy place . . . and I'm leaving!

Me: your leaving us?

Meghan: (as she is laughing) just kidding!

It was all I could do to keep from cracking up, she is only 5, I'm just not sure we will make it until her teen years.

Alright time for bed and hopefully a little sleeping in tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


Do you Skype? We just started skyping when my Dad & Gay-Dee sent us a web-cam for Christmas. Wow! I don't know it took me so long to get a web-cam. It is very cool to be able to talk and see the person on the other end via the computer. Meghan LOVES to be able to skype people, should be no surprise since she is my little social girls anyway. So, my picutre for today is of us skyping this afternoon, not a great picture at all, but it's part of our lives these days so I want to remember it.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

It's Tuesday

and back to the routine of life after the holidays! I think I'm on a sugar crash from all of the sweets I ate in the month of December, we are trying to get the rest of the sweet stuff out of here and Daryl made a huge pot of vegetable soup last night for dinner, I'm so bad at eating my vegetables, but I can usually eat this soup for a few days without too much trouble, it was really yummy! I'm sure my system is in shock from all the healthy veggies.

It's January 6th and I've managed to take a picture everyday! I think this was about as far as I made it last year, but this year I am 100% committed to "Project 365". I made some digi templates and I think that is what will help make this a successful project for me, I've already got the first 4 days scrapped with a little journaling, with the templates it so easy to drop a picture in and do a little bit of writing, done! I want to make up a few different ones to rotate through the year, otherwise I think it will be pretty boring.

Off to get Meghan to bed and get some pictures uploaded and am going to try and get to bed at a decent time, it's been soooo hard to get up this week!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

It's Sunday . . .

which means tomorrow is back to the old routine. The past 2 weeks have been so nice, great holidays, short weeks at work, lazy time at home with the family, but I guess all good things have to come to an end.

I'm still trying hard to come up with my "word" for this year. There are so many options and I just can't seem to settle on just one. Why is it we feel we can conquer the world just because it's January 1st. I've also toyed with the idea of having a word a month, maybe a smaller time frame can truly keep me accountable and on task for that month and what I want to accomplish. I wish I could start every month with the newness and excitement that comes with January 1st. So, I will decide, soon, on either a word for the year or my 12 words for 2009, do you have a word?

Feels great to have Christmas put away, Daryl is climbing the ladder up to the attic as I type, bye bye for now, see you in about 11 months. I decided that I will get an earlier start to decorating this year, if I have everything BUT the tree done by Thanksgiving I think that will really make the month of December easier and give us more time to enjoy the decorations that we work so hard to get out. Daryl even said yesterday that Christmas should be for 3 months to make it worth all work that goes into getting everything ready! AAAHHHHH, it's taken almost 18 years but I think he is finally starting to get it!!!

Meghan was such a big little helper taking the ornaments off the tree, and asking me a million and one questions about EVERYTHING! It is so fun watching the excitement that she has in everything that she does!

Well, need to go make a list and run to the grocery store for a few things to get us through the week! Happy 2009 everyone.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Never again . . .

will I feel guilty for spending time scrapbooking. I have always known it's a great hobby and sometimes I feel like I spend too much time messing with the pictures and all of the other "stuff" that comes with this great hobby. But yesterday, I spent a good 6 or 7 hours going through 2 boxes of old photos that I got from my dad at Thanksgiving. I've been dying to dive into those boxes but knew I needed to wait until after the holidays, so yesterday that is what I did. Here is what it looked like after I got the boxes emptied ~

I had quite the little mess going on . . .

But the sad part of all of this is that 99% of the photos were not marked in anyway, I was able to recognize part of them and was able to divide in to piles by different people, but I have some huge stacks of photos that I have no idea who these people are in them. The other thing it made me realize is that I know very little of my family history, what were my great grandparents name? uuummm, great grandma & great grandpa, that is how I knew them. So, I've started a notebook with everyone's name at the top, the next time my Dad is in town I hope that we can have some time to sit down and go through some photos and that he can help fill in the blanks of the many many questions I now have floating through my head.

This is exactly why scrapbooking is so much more than a hobby, it makes me so happy to know that for generations to come there will be no doubt in my grandkids grandkids who we are and what we did. And this is only half of my heritage, I have a feeling that things are not in any better condition on the other half of my family, that will have to be my next project.

So, now that I've got everything sorted, this is what I have to work with ~

And I love this old picture, I'm pretty sure it's my Grandfater Larry, Dad????

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Hello 2009!

Today started a bit on the slow side, well, since we didn't get home last night, uummm, this morning until 1:00 am, thank goodness Meghan decided to sleep in! She is NOT a sleeperinner so when she crawled into our bed at 8:00 this morning and rolled over and went back to sleep, I was more than happy to go back to sleep too! Until almost 11:00, I don't remember the last time I slept until 11:00, definately pre-Meghan.

Anyway, had a great night out last night over at the Howe's, the kids rocked out playing Rock Band

Meghan, Trevor & Emma on vocals
Austin on the drumsMeghan & Emma blowing their horns, very loudly!

and then after mid-night the big boys decided to try and get through a song without being booed, it took a few tries and a few changes of instruments, but they finally did it (hence the reason it was 1:00 before we got home!)

Hope everyone had a happy and safe New Years!