Thursday, November 4, 2010

Budge's Golden Sunshine Honey

For those of you who don't know, I come from a family that has been in the honey business for ages. My Great-Grandpa Lawrence Budge opened up Budge's Honey in Malad in 1924. My Uncle Larry (pronounced "Lar-ree") expanded to Montana in 1961. The honey was so stinkin' delish that KFC picked Budge's Honey to be the honey they included in the little packets with their biscuits.

After all that, my Great-Grandpa Budge retired and my Uncle Wayne took over the business in Malad. In the early 80's my Grandpa Budge expanded Budge's Honey to Northern California under the label "The Honey Man." I remember seeing all of the machines when I was little. I thought it was the coolest thing that my Grandpa was a honey man. Not to mention that his honey was the best!

Everyone in the honey business retired. My Grandpa moved to Utah. My Uncle Larry sold his clover fields in Montana in 1985. The Malad operation was sold to another company in 1988. Just recently my Uncle Larry passed away. It was really tough on my family. My dad got to talking with some of his cousins (who live nearby). They got to talking about all the fun they had bottling honey and how they all learned about hard work and business from Budge's Honey.

We all decided that we wanted to continue the family business. My dad, my husband, my cousins, and the rest of our local family have relocated Budge's Honey to PG. Just today we passed (with 100%) our city & agriculture inspections. Production starts at 6:00 am tomorrow morning (unfortunately, I will be at school) and we will be in business.

Budge's Honey will be available in Kohler's and Good Earth stores in Utah. You can also order at

My family is the best. For Goodness Sakes...Eat HONEY!
Like us at:

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Great Big Sea Video - Nothing But A Song (Cover)

Eli and my dad entered a karaoke contest with a couple of buddies. This is their video. Go ahead and watch it and comment on the youtube page. Finalist will be posted on Friday. We'll keep you updated!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Flood waters rise along Wasatch Front

Flood waters rise along Wasatch Front

The flooding is getting bad in Little and Big Cottonwood Creeks. E and I are probably heading up around noon-ish to help sandbag. If you can spare time and live in the area, try to make it up (or down)! Here's the volunteer info:

Meet at Cottonwood Heights Elementary School, 2415 E. Bengal Blvd. (7530 South) in Cottonwood Heights

Friday, June 4, 2010

Ashley's Giveaway!

My friend Ashley is doing a giveaway on her blog. She's an awesome photographer! If you're in Salt Lake or Utah counties, you should really enter to win. Even if you don't enter to win, you should give her a call if you're looking for a photographer!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

MacJam Session 2

After a successful inaugural run of MacJam, we've decided to keep rolling with it. Session 2 was too much fun! We had a ton more people and a few different acts on the roster. We have to thank the Mackay's for letting us invade their home and feeding us! Not to mention sharing their talented friends and family with us.

Terann and Meliah were our opening act with Once Upon a December. Too cute!
Shane led off the big boys. He did a few covers of Bon Jovi, Plain White T's, Sheryl Crow, Counting Crows and Matt Kearny.

Eli did some originals (I Want to Fly, High School) and then did a couple of covers. He covered Train (Soul Sister), Jason Mraz (Geek in the Pink) and then did a Rascal Flatts tune with my Pop.
This is where we had intermission and ate Heather's 12 (which became 11) layer chocolate cake. Delicious!
Devin opened the second set. He did a couple of originals and the covered Weezer and Corey Hart (I Wear my Sunglasses at Night, hence the wig and shades.)

This is our new pal Daniel Thuet. He's quite the talented young man. Who knew that a song about cinnamon rolls could be so sensual? We'll let you know when he and Eli hit up open mic night at Velour. You can hear some of his stuff on his MySpace music page.

This is Dan with Karlie. They did pretty for throwing together a duet before the show.

And this is Karlie Mckinnon. Think Regina Spektor meets Ingrid Michaelson meets Norah Jones. Great pianist, great lyricist, and an OUTSTANDING voice! If you're going to be near Farmington on July 10th, she'll be opening for Colors there. Stop by. We might be there. She's got music on her Myspace page too.

This is one of the better pictures of our audience. My mom and Miranda (although MJ was with the boys most of the night. Teenagers.)

And I'm going to leave you with a special treat. It's kind of dark, but you'll get the picture. This is Eli singing the song he wrote for his parents- I Want to Fly. It was written for their 30th anniversary and actually won him a spot in the top 10 new LDS artist. He got to do a three state tour and everything. I'll warn you, he's kind of a showoff. But that's why I love him.

Thanks again Heather and Shane! We're looking forward to the end of June. Bigger and better!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Stars on Ice

I don't know how I get to be so lucky! I was driving home from work one day while listening to the radio. I was just in time to hear the song scramble to win something or other. I listened, for the heck of it, and realized that I knew the song - Mo' Money, Mo' Problems (Notorious BIG). Sweet. Then the announcer repeated their phone number, which they never do and I decided to give it a try. The phone rang a couple of times and I was in. That was the easiest thing in the world! I then found out I won tickets to see Stars on Ice. I called up the little sister (because I knew Eli wouldn't want to go) and invited her along.
The day before the performance I got a phone call from some guy named Jake with the radio station. He told me that I was a lucky winner again and me and Miranda were put on the list for a meet and greet before the show. Sweet! We got to meet Todd Eldredge and Jeremy Abbott, both talented and super nice guys!
The seats were pretty good, but unfortunately, my camera sucks, so I can't show you my pictures. We got to see Sasha Cohen (not the star of Borat), Davis & White (couple), Belbin & Agosto (couple), Michael Weiss (the back flip is awesome live!), Yuka Sato, Shen & Zhao, Alissa Cziny, and Ashley Wagner. And of course the two we met before the show.

I wasn't sure that I was going to enjoy it (I barely watched the Olympics this year), but surprisingly I was SUPER impressed. Ice skating takes a ton of strength and talent. I can barely push myself across the ice. There's not way I could even imagine doing flips and splits and lifting people by one leg. Amazing! If you ever get a chance to go, you should... at least once in your lifetime.

Bruja - 7 months

Bruja was born On October 31, 2009. She is now 7 months old and has changed a little bit. I'll show you what I mean. I found these pictures on my camera card.

One day

2 weeks

3 Weeks

4 weeks

7 Months

I know you probably don't care, but I care. She's HUGE! She's outgrown both her mom and dad (who are 9 lbs and 6 lbs respectively). She's a whopping 13 lbs. She is just getting used to cuddling, but loves kisses and is a pretty smart dog. Lima (her mom) was the Alpha, but Bruja took over that job. We considered giving her away (since we weren't planning on keeping her and her brother and sister found homes), but now I couldn't imagine my home without her. Loves!


Wow. During the school year I knew I was busy, but I didn't realize how busy until I finally unloaded my camera card. Be prepared. I've got a little more time on my hands right now.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Some things that I've learned that I love about ice skating rinks:

I love the way the ice looks just after it has been smoothed over by the zamboni, especially when it's still wet and the lights reflect off the water.

I love the sound the blades on skates make when they hit the ice.

I love the spray of ice that rooster tails from the blades when there's a sudden stop or quick movement on the ice.

I love the way flecks of ice stick to costumes or uniforms after a quick slide or tumble across the ice.

I love the amazing talent and skill it takes to skate from one end of the rink to the other. Not to mention how awesome it is to see some people flip and spin and send pucks flying across the ice and make it look so simple and graceful.

I LOVE winning tickets!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Festival of Colors

Now that school is coming to an end, I have a little more time to post some of these pictures that I've had stored in my camera for a little while. These are some of my favorites from The Festival of Colors.

In Spanish Fork there is a huge temple known as The Lotus Temple. Every year the Krishnas celebrate spring with the Holi Festival. There's lots of music, lots of food, and most of all LOTS of color! At certain times during the festival a big crowd gathers and everyone who has colored powder throws it into the air to celebrate all the brightness and alive things of spring.

They also have a huge bonfire where they burn the likeness of the demon Holika. It's a really interesting story with a hero and everything that can be read at

To say the least, it was a fun experience. It was messy, loud, and there were tons of friendly people. I kind of imagine Woodstock being similar, but maybe not. Eli and I took Miranda and her friend. It's fun to be able to participate in and learn about other peoples cultures. If you ever get the chance to go, you should go at least once.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

"It's been hardly a moment; you are already missed"

Eli is gone. He went to Colorado on his Annual Brothers Trip. He'll be gone until Sunday. I am excited for him to be with them so they can do all of their manly, brotherly bonding stuff, but I want him back. I'm not going to lie. I'm selfish. He's been gone for less than 24 hours and I'm already going through withdrawls. I had a terrible time sleeping last night. I had to take Melatonin to knock myself out.

I usually wake up in the morning, hating the alarm clock and slightly miffed because Eli's clock is set to go off a whole 45 minutes after mine. This morning I woke up saddened because I had zero cuddle time AND I had to go let the dogs out before I got in the shower. Eli usually does that while I'm shampooing. Thanks for that E.

Because of the dogs, I was running a little behind which led me to think about breakfast while I was blow drying my hair. I had no idea what I was going to do. E usually makes us our fresh fruit smoothies AND makes my lunch for the day. Well, I didn't get my smoothie (I just took a whole box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch with me in the car), but I did get my homemade lunch because my AMAZING husband made me lunch yesterday for today and tomorrow. Who does that?

And to top off that he left me a gift. I get a massage! Woo-hoo! Especially right now with the end of the year coming up so quick, my stress level is off the charts. He felt that I should do something nice for myself because I was so nice to let him go. Too sweet!

So, in case you couldn't tell, my husband spoils me. He does so much for me and does it without asking for anything in return. I'm feeling like I have the "me-me-me" syndrome, but I can't help it when my best friend makes me feel like the center of the universe. I want him back. But he needs sometime off too. I hope he has fun! 3 1/2 days left...

Friday, April 30, 2010

Help in the Gulf

Oil Slick from Rig Explosion Reaches U.S. Coastline

It’s times like these that I wish I had money. I wish I had it so I could help. I’ve been watching the news a lot lately and it kills me to know that there’s all this trouble in the Gulf of Mexico and I can’t be there to help. If money wasn’t an issue, I’d be on a plane to Louisiana in a heartbeat; just as I would have been on a plane to Haiti or Chile when those disasters happened. Since I can’t be there, I’ll have to settle for spreading the word and doing the little I can. If you live close to those coastal areas and you can afford to spare some of your time, help. I found this list of organizations on CNN where you can find some ways to help.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

MacJam Success!

A last minute call from Papa Joe resulted in an awesome night! Our Canadian friends Shane and Heather hosted the first ever MacJam tonight. We got a call from Dad this afternoon inviting us over to S & H's home to jam with a few people. Seeing that we didn't have any other plans for the night and Eli hasn't had a good jam session in awhile, we agreed.

However, when we got to S & H's house we were greeted by their youngest daughter who was handing out flyers. The flyer was to announce the order that the performers would be playing and we quickly noticed Eli's name on the list! So much for jamming! There were already 30 people sitting in the house listing to Devin sing about plankton abuse.

Eli and I high-tailed it around the back to the basement where he held a secret, mini-rehearsal. It's been awhile since E performed for anyone, so he wanted to make sure he could still play. Just in case you were wondering, he can. He sounded great. He played three songs- When You Say Nothing at All (which he did with Christie, my dad's cousin), Rodeo Clowns, and She Will Be Loved.

It was great to hear him play again. Not to mention to hear S and Dad and Christie sing. Love it! I'll try to take video at the next MacJam, so you can share in the pleasure of listening to Eli (and everyone else) perform.

Dad and Christie
Devin (who sang of Plankton & Child abuse)

S - our host

Friday, April 16, 2010


I was sitting down in a temple session yesterday when I observed something so very interesting. The elderly woman sitting in front of me had the most defined wrinkles I have ever seen on anyone! I’ve never really sought after someone’s wrinkles before. I just happened to notice. The wrinkles made a deep criss-cross pattern across the back of her neck. Because I am currently going over geometry with my students, they crossed to form a perfect looking rhombus. As she moved her head around the wrinkles undulated with such familiarity. I was entranced. I could not look away.

As I became familiar with this woman’s wrinkles, I began thinking. I wondered what this woman’s story was. How old was she? What types of things has she experienced? Was she married? Was her husband still alive? Was she content with the journey her life has taken her on? Is she where she expected she would be? I know those are a lot of questions to ask from a few wrinkles, but it kept me thinking.

I saw a few more ladies that day. One looked like she had carried a quite a load on her shoulders and she was slightly stooped from the weight, but there she was with a light in her eye and a dazzling smile. I just wanted to run up and hug her. Another woman walked around with her lips pressed in a tight line, worry wrinkles plain on her face. I wondered what she was going through.

It made me wonder what stories my wrinkles will tell when I’m older. I’ve been thinking about the different pathways my life has offered. So much has happened in a relatively short amount of time. There have been so many twists and turns; my life could have easily ended up in a completely different place. If I would have chosen door 1 or door 4, my life could be the complete opposite of what it is now.

I’ve had my heartbroken a couple of times; that’s just another storyline of life on my face. I’ve lived through struggles and trials. Those events that have been etched and worn into my life made me who I am and they help me feel more. I don’t think I could love and appreciate Eli as much as I do now without those other events. I’m not saying that I couldn’t love Eli without those other things happening and I wouldn’t volunteer to go through all of it again, but I’m thankful for all the learning.

I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be in life and I’m happy with my place. I have an amazing husband who I love more than anything. I am so lucky to have my best friend by my side when I lay down at night. My day starts in the best way possible because he is by my side in the morning. He lets me listen to bad 80s music. He lets me color in my coloring book. He lets me sing at the top of my lungs and dance and doesn’t laugh at me too much when I want to watch Saturday morning cartoons. I have 3 fantastic, four-legged family members (I wish they were two-legged, but in time) that greet me when I walk in the door every day. I have a job that I love. I have a home. I live close to family. Of course there are other things that I want, but I don’t need anymore than I have.

I hope that when I become “elderly” that I have beautiful wrinkles that show I’ve lived a wonderful life.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Age is Strictly a Case of Mind Over Matter...

If you don't mind, it doesn't matter! Recently I've been feeling older (not that I'm old at all), but last night reminded me that it doesn't matter! E and I went to a surprise party for a friend of ours 30th last night at a place called Jump On It! It's a trampoline gym and it's pretty, dang cool!

We got there 20 minutes till J showed up with his family. There was a ton of family and friends there. I got to meet a lot of E's friends from the mission in Peru. I've been hearing so many stories about them all over the past four years, it was nice to be able to put faces to names (although I did meet quite a few of them four years ago). We mixed. We mingled. We ate food from L & L Hawaiian BBQ. Just as a side note: L & L is good, but if you're ever in St. George eat at Honolulu Grill - you won't regret it.

After all the time spent hanging out, J FINALLY showed up. When you're waiting to surprise someone, it feels like forever until they show up. He was so surprised! His kids were so excited that they were able to surprise Dad. J really is one of the nicest guys I've ever met and it was so cool to see all his friends and family celebrate him.

It's amazing what people can do on a trampoline. I never grew up with one, so I stuck to bouncing around and off the walls, but some people are daring! I kind of want to take a trampoline exercise class because by the time I was done, I was totally spent. Which was good because it was present time!

A few years back - because the times were kind of tight - J had to sell his motorcycle. He was telling us that he cried because he had to give it up. His wife (who is amazing) tracked down the guy they sold it to and bought it back. She had it hidden at the gym and started it up. The noise was deafening. As soon it was rumbling, J got a HUGE smile on his face. He was so excited to have it back! It's nice to see your friends so happy.

Either way, I have to say, it really doesn't get better than spending time with friends and family and being a kid!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

It's Going to be an African Daisy Day

These are the flower seeds that one of my favorite students (I'm not going to lie, I have some) gave me today. It's amazing how things pop up unexpectedly and at the exact moment you need them. This one almost brought me to tears...

Dear Mrs. Adams,
You are an amazing reacher! YOU ROCK!!! You have taught me so much! You have helped me developed into that young woman I am! I know if I follow what you have taught me, I will be successful!
Love, G

This note (which I love all of the exclamation marks, by the way, because she talks exactly like that) was accompanied by this note (which makes me think it was a YW activity):

Teacher Seeds

Students are like seeds
you plant in the soil.
Each takes patience,
nurturing and toil.

You are a great teacher.
You do your job well,
planting seeds of knowledge,
Just look at us to tell.

Now plant these seeds
and over each one fuss,
so they'll grow up bright
to remind you of us!

YW activity or not, I like it! Today is going to be a good day!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Questions for Answers

Geez Becca. You ask such thought-provoking questions! I’ve been giving your question a lot of thought. I talked it over with Eli and I think that we’ve reached our opinion, but I think I have to ask you, what do you think?

I think there are two definite answers. I don’t know if my lost thought counts as an answer, but it’s definitely a suggestion. First, I think it’s okay to tell your child “I don’t know.” It’s good for them to know that parents don’t always have the answers to every question. For me, this is probably the least helpful of the options though. It would be the simplest answer and definitely the least time consuming, but I think in that quote I wrote before, this would be the disservice part. Again though, I don’t think every question has to have a definite answer.

The answer I think that would provide more experience to your kids would be your second answer, “I don’t know, but let’s find out together” In this situation your child knows it is okay not to know the answer and it could be fun to find out. There are so many different resources available to find out answers. How much fun would it be to ask your grandparents questions? How about taking a fieldtrip together and going to museum or the zoo and asking an expert there? What about teaching (at an appropriate age) how to use the internet to find answers? I personally LOVE going to the bookstore and finding answers in books. And don’t forget, even if YOU know the answer, help them find out the answer. There’s nothing wrong with a little hard work.

And then when your child gets to know all of these options, how much fun would it be to say, “I don’t know. How about you find out the answer and I’ll look for the answer and we’ll compare!” I know it’s kind of cheese-y, but honestly, I think it’s a great way to teach your child research skills, but also a way to encourage their curiosity. And that way, when they get to be old, like me, they might find something else that interests them and they can make a career or it. or they make an awesome new discovery.

I (in my opinion, of course) think these are some good ways to encourage curiosity. And let’s face it, we don’t have all the time in the world to satisfy every question, but I think it’s important to help them find answers to some of their questions. That way they know that their questions are not dumb or are important and that they can find answers on their own.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Daughter of Sintin

Apparently this is the time to move. Within the past two weeks, I've had one student move and two students move in. That puts my class count at 31. I'm not going to lie. My student that moved out is a sweetheart, but a little socially awkward and always caused trouble. One of my new students that came is a sweet, shy little girl. It was a nice break.

And then this past Tuesday, I got my 31st student. I met Mom on Monday after school. These were the first words out of her mouth (with a chuckle, I might add), "Hi! Good luck with R!" Great. I love it when parents start out with that. She brought him to class on Tuesday. I shook his hand (it makes kids feel more grown up) and he smiled at me. Not 2 minutes later he was interrupting, throwing stuff, putting his hands in other students' desks, a nightmare. After lunch he was 25 minutes late to class. I had 5 students tell me that he was bragging about leaving school. What a mess!

I sat R down and told him how things were in my class. I told him that I would never lie to him and I would always treat him with respect. I expected the same in return. We respect each other's time, property, etc. That seemed to sink in because the next day was a lot better.

R is still getting used to the routines in class and so, understandably, he forgot to turn his math notebook in. I decided I'd grab it for him so he could get create for the work he was so diligently working on in class earlier. I grabbed the notebook and found this where his quiz should have been (Italics added for clarification, in case you need it):

My Techer is the daughter of Sintin [Satan]

take a good look around/this is my class room/ I know it's H**/it's becaus my techer is the daughter of Sainten/ She turns around and she shaks my hand and I say F*** you/ Now go back to H** you Demon

I walk up to the front of the class/ and I say F you/ you guys like to be in H**/ So I walk to Mis. Adams/ I say Hay you Demon go back home to the firey pit of H***/ You can kiss my A**/That's why humeas [humans] are the top of the food chain

I will tell you what to do/ you will bow down to me/ because I am the tru king of H***/ All of the kids at school call me Hades...

And I'll just leave it at that. It goes on for another five pages or so. I'd say that this kid has a few troubles at home. And here I was thinking that he was working so hard on math. I'm really not up for this, especially with three months of school left. Needless to say, I'm meeting with his dad today to figure out if we can get this kid what he needs. A little discipline, a little respect, and a listening ear. He's crying out for something; I just don't know what.

Monday, March 1, 2010

How to Help in Chile

How to Help in Chile

posted by PETER ROTHBERG on 02/27/2010 @ 4:11pm

A deadly 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck central Chile early this morning, collapsing buildings, shattering major bridges and highways across a long strip of the country, killing at least 122 people and creating tsunami warnings in more than 50 countries along the Pacific basin. (The Washington Post has a good page of breaking news with maps, videos, twitter feeds and aggregated broadcast news accounts.)

The quake was vastly more powerful than the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that caused widespread damage and death in Haiti on January 12, but Chile is a much more prosperous country than Haiti, with average living standards among the highest in Latin America, and about 18 percent of people living in poverty, compared with 80 percent in Haiti.

So while Chile's relative affluence will help the country head off the dire humanitarian crisis that we're seeing in Haiti, enormous resources are still needed for reconstruction, and especially for providing a safety net for the country's millions of citizens already mired in poverty.

Numerous international organizations already operating in Chile can act the most quickly and can use the most immediate support. Jonathan Daniel Harris did a nice round-up of groups at Huffington Post, many of which are on the list below.

How To Help

Save The Children -- Save The Children is sending an emergency assessment team to Chile, and is asking for contributions to its Children's Emergency Fund to aid these efforts.

World Vision -- The international development, relief and advocacy organization has already sent its first relief flight, from Bolivia this afternoon, with supplies like tarps, blankets, plastic sheeting, and collapsible water containers for survivors. Support these efforts with earmarked gifts to families that need them.

AmeriCares -- Vice President of Emergency Response, Christoph Gorder, says AmeriCares is sending medical supplies and humanitarian aid to Chile. Make a direct contribution toAmeriCares' Chilean earthquake fund.

Habitat for Humanity -- Habitat for Humanity has a continual presence in Chile, where the group has constructed more than 1,300 homes. Habitat will be essential in reconstruction efforts, especially in hard-hit rural areas.

International Medical Corps -- IMC has a presence in dozens of countries around the globe, providing immediate medical care to those affected by natural disasters. Contribute to itsemergency response fund.

ShelterBox -- International disaster relief agency ShelterBoxhas mobilized a team to bring aid to Concepcion, Chile's second largest city, which saw the worse damage.

Watch this space for updates and please add links and info on other ways to help in the comments section.

PS: If you have extra time on your hands and want to follow me on Twitter -- a micro-blog -- click here. You'll find (slightly) more personal posts, breaking news, basketball and lots of links

I found this article here: How to Help in Chile

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Maybe You Could Tell Me What to Ask You

I'm sitting in a comprehension strategies class right now and I've heard some interesting things that I want to share. We just read a little piece from a book called Mosaic of Thought: The Power of Comprehension Strategy Instruction by Ellin Oliver Keene and Suzanne Zimmerman. This is what I wanted to share:

"Children are natural questioners. It is how they work to make sense of the complex world around them. They want to know the "why" for everything. They are, by nature, curious. And we do them a great disservice if we ignore, belittle, or disregard their questions. We do them an even greater disservice if through our educational process we extinguish their need to question."

I feel that as a teacher, I need to have all of the answers... but, I don't. I want to be able to let my students ask their questions. I want them to ask good questions and be curious about the world around them. I don't want to tell them what questions they need to ask. I want to help encourage their curiosities. I want them to discover.

As an adult, I want to understand the world around me. When, where and why did I loose my desire to ask questions? I want to ask questions...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Relationships, Observations, Thoughts, Decisions

I knew a lady once who knew everything about love and marriage. After Eli and I were married she told us that the way to keep the passion and love strong was to "be mysterious." Mysterious meant never letting your spouse see you "unattractive." She told me that she threw out all of her husband's sweats because they were "unattractive." For the first three years of her marriage she never brushed her teeth in front of was unattractive.

She also told me that keeping things mysterious meant that you didn't tell your spouse everything. She had her best guy friend to tell everything to. Her husband didn't want to hear the things she wanted to talk about. She also informed me that you and your spouse had to have different lives and activities "so that way you don't get sick of each other," which meant going to the dance clubs until 3 a.m. with a guy who was not your husband.

I've seen many situations where a couple has been together for YEARS, who own a home together, who might have a dog or even children together. One or both of the people in the couple don't want to commit to marriage or anything just in case they find someone better or "s/he cheats on me."

Something else I hear a lot of of, "Yes I'm married, but I still need to be me." "I realized that I'm a mom, but it's okay to put myself before my kids. That doesn't mean I love them less." And a couple of weeks later I saw this mom yell at her spouse because he wanted to ride his dirt bike (the first time in 2 weeks), but she has a lunch date with "Bobby. "My husband was so mad at me, but he was just being selfish because he wanted to go riding."

"I love my husband, but..."

"Oh Mandy, you'll understand after you've been married for 10 years."

I had a parent teacher conference a couple of weeks ago. Mom wanted me to refer her to special education. I told her that her daughter wouldn't struggle so much if she didn't miss so much school. She has missed, on average, 2 days of school a week. Of the 3 days left of the school week, she usually calls home or gets checked out early. When I told her mom that her daughter should be here more often she said, "I keep telling her that she should go to school!" About a week later, her daughter got a new phone and called mom and started yelling at her telling mom exactly how things were going to work.

I had another mom call and tell me that her son didn't get his science fair project done because she was in the hospital the last 5 days. She told her son that he needed to get it done while she was gone. I told her he could turn it in, but it would be late. She said, "But it's not his fault. I didn't get the stuff for him." The project had been assigned for two months before she called. Guess whose kid doesn't do his work and has an excuse for everything?

The past 6 years of school has been difficult for S. He struggles with concepts and he has a poor attitude. His dad and stepmom both work for the military. I got an email from him at the beginning of the year that said he felt like he was failing his children, but he had no choice. He had to work. We've both been putting in an effort. I meet with S before school and Dad works with him in the evenings (even though Dad is so tired). Dad even made time to come to a class party. Guess who is doing better in school? Guess whose attitude has improved 500%? Guess who feels like Dad cares about what's going on?

It's my opinion that in any relationship, whether you're dating or married, you are one half of a whole. You chose to be a part of that whole. Parts of a good relationship include charity, friendship, compromise. You can still be your own person, have your interests, and hobbies, but you need to consider your partners needs too.

As a parent, your job is to lead, love, and be an example. It's been my experience that kids need a routine and have set expectations. They need guidance and need to know you're there. You're their parent, not they're best friend. I heard somewhere that "No" is one of the best words you can use with your children. But on the flip side, parents need to show their children respect as well. "Because I said so, " doesn't cut it for too long.

As of lately, I've realized that I'm intrigued by all sorts of relationships. I see a lot of dysfunctional parent/child relationships. I see a lot of AMAZING parent/child relationships. The results of both situations are astounding. I see a lot of dysfunctional and functional relationships between couples. The effects on the surround environments is sometimes obvious and other times, not so obvious.

I've been thinking about going back to school. I don't know if I want to make a career change, but I want to find out about couples and families. I want to go to school for family counseling. I have so many thoughts and opinions. Sometimes I feel like my theories are just common sense and other times I feel like I'm completely off base. It's just time I need now...

By the way, I feel completely blessed to have married my best friend. I've learned so much about myself and about life. He loves me when I dress up and when I'm in sweats. He includes me in every decision and cares about my opinion. He loves me when I dance like an idiot or when I pretend I can sing. He doesn't mind when I'd rather go see the new animated film because I'm a sucker for cartoons. He doesn't judge me because I have weird habits and do strange things. And I love him in all the same ways (even when he decides to where the hideous "Hawaiian" shirt). Yeah, we might have hit bumps along the past four years, but who cares? We've lived and learned. Life is just better when you know you have someone to share it with.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

To: Mrs. Adams From: K

"Mrs. Adams, I had some extra time yesterday, so I made you something. You should read it when you have some extra time."

After I took attendance and reminded my literature groups we were going to be meeting in ten minutes, I pulled a short note out of a handmade, binder paper envelope and read the following in sloppy cursive (we need to practice apparently):

Dear Mrs. Adams,

I don't know why no one in the class but me and mabey a few other girls have noticed that you are having a difficult time because of the class being so rude and that mabey you feel like you're not doing a good job. Well, I'm saying that you ARE doing a good job, a great job. You're setting the same expectations as middle school to prepare us. Some people just don't see it and those people are going to have the difficult time. You keep it up and I'll set the example.


I guess I can make it until spring break in April...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

When You Encourage Your Students...

You can sometimes end up with a pie in your face! We recently completed the Jazz Read-a-thon at our school and I was completely surprised that my class won for total minutes read (bragging point: the top 4 readers in 6th grade were all from class)! Of course because the students sacrificed SO much to read an average of 1200 minutes in 4 weeks, I had to pay my dues for torturing them and take a pie to the face. It was generic whip cream that tasted good, but I smelled like rotten milk for the rest of the day.

I've never been at a school where we've won the Jazz Read-a-thon and I was ecstatic to find out that what our prize was. Our little school won a visit from Ronnie Price! He was the nicest kid ever and was really interactive with the students. He read the book I Can Be Anything! by Jerry Spinelli (which by the way is a great book). Then the fun stuff happened...

Ronnie (because we're on a first name basis now) cleared the area and challenged the top readers in the school to a one on one game. If they made it and he didn't, they won. If both of them didn't make it, the student won. And of course if he made it, he won. Ronnie didn't beat a single student...go figure! He then, after being persuaded, ran across the gym and did a slam dunk.

After Ronnie left, it was time for the pies. Like I said earlier, all of the top readers from 6th were in my class, so it really worked out with me taking one for the team. I'm just glad that my kind, gentle, and sensitive girl got picked to pie me instead of my 5' 6" monster of a student who isn't too happy with me now that parent-teacher conferences are over. All in all, a good experience. I'm just glad to have programs like this that help students work for a goal and get in a ton of reading practice.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Help for Haiti

I know I haven't posted in a long while and I've got loads to share, but I found this article on Yahoo this morning. It's hard to sit back and wait, not knowing what to do to help...

Wyclef Jean

Wyclef Jean

Massive Interest in Texting for Haiti

by Mike Krumboltz

9 hours ago

920 Votes

With Haiti still reeling from Tuesday's devastating earthquake, the Red Cross has stated that it has run out of medical supplies on the island nation.

More supplies are on the way, but it is unknown when they will arrive. Meanwhile, on the Web, people eager to help are seeking out unique ways in which they can help.

In the Search box, some of the biggest queries are for different ways to "text to help." For example, the Red Cross has set up a system where a cell phone user can text "Haiti" to the number 90999. The text message will result in a $10 donation to the Red Cross. So far, the campaign has been a massive hit. According to Mashable, the texting option has already raised over $800,000.

Another popular option for cell phone users eager to help: Text "Yele" to 501501. Doing so will result in a $5 donation to Yéle Haiti, a grassroots organization started by singer and Haiti native Wyclef Jean. Over the course of the day, Web searches on Wyclef and his organization have soared to record highs.

Wyclef, famous for his participation in the Fugees as well as his successful solo career, has been outspoken in seeking donations, especially via his Twitter account.

We could find no stats on how successful his drive has been, but based on anecdotal stories from the Web, text-to-give campaigns have the potential to make a big difference. The San Francisco Chronicle interviewed several young people who have made donations and have also asked their friends to donate via social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

Even if you'd rather not donate via text message, there are other ways to give your support to those who need it most. The official sites for the Red Cross, UNICEF, Doctors Without Borders, and Wyclef's Yéle Haiti are all accepting donations. Searches on those organizations surged tremendously on Wednesday afternoon.