Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year, New Stuff!

I've decided that 2010 will start with giveaways. There will be books and loads of other fun stuff. Watch for the first contest to be announced on Wednesday, January 6! I love giving things away!

My first great giveaway was through Cub Scout Day Camp many years ago. We had hats from the US Navy, tokens for free ice cream sundaes, cool bands, and tons of other stuff. That was so much fun.

When my son, John, was planning his Eagle Scout project, he decided to do a children's health fair. He had so many free things, from videos to stuffed animals, that nearly every child who attended took home a prize.

Sooo, look for the contests, and enjoy your free stuff!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Focus, Focus, Focus!

As I contemplate the beginning of another year, I have loads of plans. Many include travel for family events. My oldest son will graduate with his PhD this year from a school in Arizona. My second son just received his BS, and will earn a Master's by next Christmas in Utah. My youngest is a senior in high school who would like to have her siblings (plus one currently going to school in Idaho) with her at graduation. My father-in-law will turn 90 in June in Philadelphia.

My other plans include trips to promote my book, including a conference in Utah in April, and a book launch party also in Utah in June.

My concerns focus on money. How to afford all of this?

I had already decided to diet before my upcoming adventures. Now I see I also need a financial diet. Back to my roots of couponing, shopping sales, and asking "Do we really need this?"

I begin today. Although the holidays are far from over, I resolve to cut down on the calories, ramp up the exercise, and squeeze those pennies until they scream.

I'll let you know how it's going.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Great Tamale Caper

Tamales in Texas are a Christmas tradition. I'm from California, so this isn't native to me . . . although I've been here 22 years . . . as this story demonstrates!

About a month ago, I ordered some tamales from a coworker. Being fairly new on the job, I didn't realize I had ordered four dozen!

The day they were delivered, I was out with a stomach bug. The next day I paid for my order, which had been stowed in the office refrigerator.

Not being 100% up to speed, I ran out to another building leaving the poor tamales behind. The next day, while at another campus, I received a text from my officemate reminding me to pick up my order. I was told they were the only ones left. I called a different coworker and offered her the tamales. She also forgot to take them home.

Friday was the last day before the district closed down for Christmas Break. I had another text from my officemate reminding me again. Another coworker on my campus offered to buy them from me, so we zipped over, I ran in, snagged the bag, and flew out again.

Another telephone call from another coworker. I had taken her bag . . . which was 8 short due to a late night she had worked. I told her not to worry about this, but she insisted on leaving 8 in the freezer for me to pick up in January.

Looks like another tamale run after the break!

Marketing, marketing, marketing!

We're looking for bloggers! Specifically those who have children with special needs, teach those with special needs, or any type of religious leaders! Send me the contact information and we'll get them set up!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Rollin' with the punches!

Today I found out I had to test a kid at the last minute, have a few unexpected gifts to give to coworkers tomorrow, and my kids told me new things they want for Christmas. . . .

Here's to being flexible and rolling with the punches!

Monday, December 14, 2009

No Coincidences!

I picked up my daughter, Cassie, after school, and ran to the grocery store. On the way home, we passed the library. Cassie had mentioned she needed some books to prepare for the AP English test, so I impulsively asked her if she wanted to stop.

After a lap around the building to look for a parking place, I had a great time browsing the new books section. I sat down to take a peek and see if these books were really good choices. I noticed my old friend, Don Payne, talking to the librarian.

I decided to tease Don about buying (dis) Abilities in the Gospel when it comes out. He always gives as good as he gets, asking me why I didn't get him to illustrate it. The librarian then offered to host a book signing after publication. I happily agreed!

Don then approached me as I left, pointing out that I needed to record this in my journal because "There are no coincidences!"

I agree.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Delightful Students

One of the more fun parts of my job is working with students. I enjoy observations, but it's even more fun to challenge them and find out how each one learns.

I was blessed to be able to work with an especially delightful young man last week. He has a positive attitude about everything, is possibly the most polite person I have ever met, and just generally a joy to be around.

Why is this student so wonderful? I "blame" his parents. They have taken the time to teach him good grooming, manners, and how to adapt to new situations. They have a close-knit extended family for support, and work together to make sure this youth has what he needs. This child also has support for his academics, and I'm sure this will continue as he learns job skills.

Despite his disabilities, he has a great outlook on life, and is a hard worker. I predict he will have a wonderful life!

I wonder if I can get these great people to teach a parenting class?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Back in the Saddle

So much has happened, so many changes have taken place in a short period of time!

I've decided to reactivate this blog because it has better links, and I was struggling to log in to the other each day--technical difficulties!

I plan to post Wednesdays and Saturdays. We'll see how it goes!

Random thoughts for today--I worry about the parents who have been stuck in the grief cycle. When you discover a family member has a disability, you need to go through a grief process similar to when there is a death. I've seen many who are stuck in a spiraling cycle of anger. Previously I had only seen those who took their anger out on school personnel. Now I know of some who take their anger out on their children. This is the saddest thing of all.