Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Happy Dog Edition

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Sleepy Kitty Edition

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

...My brain is starting to work again...

Last week was my birthday, which you already knew. However, a lot more happened than just turning 23 - I did my internship for school, as well as helped with the major meeting at the family business. After last week, it took me the entire weekend and most of Monday to get my brain back on track. It just plain stopped working - I forgot to answer emails, return phone calls...sometimes I couldn't even remember my own name. Luckily, my host teacher provided me with this lovely birthday hat to refer to:

photo taken approx. one second before Brooklyn springboarded from my arms

The preschoolers loved it, but thankfully Ms. Ed let me take it off before my observation began. Last week, I dealt with potty accidents, puke, total and complete emotional breakdowns, an overflowing toilet, runny noses, and boogers...I definitely got an idea of what being a preschool teacher is like! I think I realized that there are pros and cons to whatever age I wind up with. My host teacher was absolutely phenomonal, and I learned SO much. It was exhausting, but a great experience.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Photos by Mike

Friday, April 18, 2008

Eye Candy Friday

We installed a pet door on Sunday, and the animals did NOT know what to think of it. It's been getting warmer and warmer here (excluding the record-setting freak cold snap we had this week), and as the weather gets closer to the blazing hot temperatures we get here in Florida, the option of leaving the sliding glass door open will disappear. So the plan was to install a pet door leading to the screened-in porch so they could come and go as they please. Well, it took a whole four days, but one of the animals finally figured it out:

I love that instead of just going through, Morgan used her paw to open the door towards her, then squeezed through.

Sophie is just being stubborn and wants mommy to still open the door for her. Brooklyn is freaked out by the noise the door makes. We'll see!
Another Trip Around the Sun

Yesterday I turned 23. This is the first birthday that I haven’t been really excited to put a new, higher number down in the “age” box. The late teens and early twenties are a pretty exciting time.

Turning 17 meant no more sneaking into R-rated movies.

18 meant I could buy cigarettes, lottery tickets, and porn – none of which I have ever bought, but still, just KNOWING that I COULD…

…19 was the last year of my teens…and I got engaged to the most wonderful man.

20 was a new decade, and I married that man.

I could drink when I turned 21 (another thing I almost never do).

I was eager to turn 22 because I felt more comfortable saying my age as a married person (I initially got a lot of comments like “…HOW old did you say you were? And how long have you been married?”)

But now that I’m 23, I’ve learned to be comfortable in my own skin. Yes, I still get questions about my age, but they just don’t get to me as much. I can see people doing the math in their head to figure out how old I was when I got married, and that used to really get under my skin, but it doesn’t anymore. I have FINALLY learned that I have no control at all over what people think about me - easier said than done! I used to let myself get upset over the fact that I didn’t really fit in with other people my age, and yes, being married in college was sometimes lonely. But you know what? Being married OUT of college is sometimes lonely, too! But I am happier with myself now than I have ever been. I love being married, I love owning a house, and I look forward to being a teacher. I have friends of all ages and from all stages of life. My life isn’t perfect, but I’ll take it!

I’ve seen other people post lyrics to songs on their blogs, and I never have because I never take the time to read anyone else’s, but these lines from a Jimmy Buffet song are really poignant to me at this stage in my life:

Hear 'em singing Happy Birthday

Better think about the wish I made
This year gone by ain't been a piece of cake
Every day's a revolution
Pull it together and it comes undone
Just one more candle and a trip around the sun

I'm just hanging on while this old world keeps spinning
And it's good to know it's out of my control
If there's one thing that I've learned from all this living
Is that it wouldn't change a thing if I let go

It’s funny to think that ten years ago, I was only thirteen years old, caught up in my teenage angst and convinced that my parent’s didn’t have a clue. What a difference ten years makes! The next year will bring a lot of changes for me, and that scares me a little, but if anything, it won’t be boring!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

In the Garden

My garden is going swimmingly! My newest orchid, which Mike helped me attach to a piece of cypress, has taken well to his new home and has even started blooming! It's got several spikes, so it should be blooming for a long time to come.
I love the pink-tinged blooms. He's related to my mom's big orchid, which I am babysitting:

My epidendrum radicans is blooming, too! I love how the leaves are a lovely green and the stem is purple.
Onto the peppers, which are growing like crazy. My peppers are another example of a gardening attempt that didn't go so well the first time but is going great this time. I have a banana pepper, which has several blooms and one that has come to fruit:

I also have a green bell pepper plant, which has TWO peppers, one of which will be ready very soon! Salsa, anyone? I can't wait!

Onions! Some of them will be pulled up for green onions, and some of them will be full-sized. Along with the lettuce that's next to it, we'll have a wonderful salad!
It's so fulfilling to watch things grow, I can't even explain it.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

I am going to be the coolest teacher this side of the Mason-Dixon line:

A Visit from Mr. Noshoulders

The snakes have been coming out in full force here in Florida. Up at Pure Florida, FloridaCracker recently had a close encounter with a lovely gray rat snake, but he got a little closer to his friend than I did to this guy:

I was sitting in the living room working on some school when out of the corner of my eye I saw this black racer slithering behind my tomato plant. My first thought was to check to make sure the kitties weren't on the porch (which they weren't). My second thought was that there was no way this guy could hurt them, being non-constrictors and non-venemous*, even if they were stupid enough to try to play with him. My third thought was to grab the camera and get out there!

Black racers are very quick - he's in this exact same S-curve in 99% of the pictures I took. I just love his beautiful black scales! I decided to let him be, since racers are famous for musking. He also looked a little stressed, and I didn't want to add to his distress.
Mr. Noshoulders found his way off the porch by himself, and Mike was very disappointed that he missed our first snake sighting of the Spring!

*snakes are not poisonous! Yes there is a difference!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Eye Candy Friday: Flying Daredevil

phot taken at Cypress Gardens; Winter Haven, Florida; March 2008

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Sleepy Kitty Edition

Friday, April 04, 2008

Eye Candy Friday

an unexpected guest

This little guy landed on my shirt a few weeks ago when I was visiting Mike and my dad at work. He stayed long enough for me to take a good picture! If you clickity for biggity you can really see the detail.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Sophie's 4th Birthday!

We celebrated Sophie's 4th birthday on Tuesday! We don't actually know when her birthday is or exactly how old she is, but we're huge dorks and we don't have kids yet...STOP LAUGHING!!

I decided against making a cake for her like I did last year, because all the recipes I found grossed me out. The idea of mixing up ingredients like baby food and wet dog chow just does not sounds like a good time for me. So, I decided to pick her up a doggie biscuit pizza from Tony's Pizza across the street. I've bought her cookies from there before, which she has always loved, and I thought this idea was so cute!

Yes, we even put on party hats! I was actually surprised that she tolerated them.

Actually she was yawning in this picture.

We shared some of the pizza with Jenna, the neighbor's chocolate Lab. I can't believe we've had Sophie for almost three years! I hate to think about what kind of life she lived before she found us, but she is my baby now, and she is spoiled rotten!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Howie Gets a Bath

When my mom came to visit last week, I jumped on the chance to get some help with giving Howie a bath. In his old age, he has gotten increasingly ornery - did you know guinea pigs can jump? I never did until I tried to give Howie a bath! He's never tried to bite me or anything, but he tries his darndest to get out of that water!

All wrapped up!

A carrot makes everything better.