Tuesday, October 28, 2008

new addition to the house

No, I am not pregnant...but come on, some of you thought it, I know you did :)

Scott has moved on from capturing and observing wolf spiders. Currently we have a praying mantis in a plastic container on the coffee table (really, who needs a nice vase, knicknack, or decorative bowl when you can have a bug in tupperware). Exciting news of the day: she laid eggs in the container! I will admit, it looks pretty cool. Theoretically, if we kept the eggs until spring (where? the freezer, since they would have been outside all winter? have to google that one), we'd have our own little praying mantis...or mantises...how many babies do they have? What the correct plurual? I feel like I should know that...

We've got the Discovery channel right in our very own living room. I am the luckiest girl in the world! :) (Seriously, though, I do find it rather enduring and pretty cute. Scott is going to be a great dad...some day, many months from now :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

God Creatively Answers Prayers

Last Thursday was a rough day at school for several small reasons that simply piled up to the point that by evening, I was mentally exhausted and "stuck" in planning a solid 90 minute lesson for third block. When I arrived at school Thursday morning, I had enough activities to get through the period, but one of the planned activites wasn't very strong. To be honest, it was a slightly relevant way to take up about 30 minutes of the block.

Both Scott and I had prayed about my upcoming day on Friday, but, to be honest, I wasn't planning on God really taking much interest in the fact that third block was going to be a struggle. That was before the fire drills.

Emergency drills (fire, code red, code yellow, tornado, etc) at Millard West are typically scheduled for 10 am (about 15 minutes into second block). If the alarms ring at any other time, we know it's not a planned drill. During the passing period between second and third block, the fire alarms rang. We spent about 15 minutes outside, enjoying the unusally warm day, while they figured things out. Then back inside, collect homework, and go to lunch. Whew! First 20 minutes of class down. Then, about five minutes before lunch is over, another fire alarm rings! Again, stand outside for 15 or 20 minutes, soaking in the sun.

In total, between actually being outside and getting the students back inside, focused and such, I think about 35 minutes of class time was wasted on false fire alarms on Friday, just enough time that I had to cut-out the 30 minute activity that I was feeling great about anyway. With the end of the semester only three days away, most teacher were probably very upset by the disruptions. They have lots of things to cram into the last few days. For this teacher, though, who had prayed that God would somehow help her to get through third block, it was an answer to prayer. How creative is our God!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Spider Update

Scott is down to one pet spider (see previous post "Cheap Entertainment" if you're wondering what I'm talking about) because Leo reduced the other spider to a pile of legs. Who's Leo, you ask? He's the larger spider that won. Yup, he now has a name. The PETA people would probably be perturbed with my pretty silly marital partner (as an English teacher, I just couldn't resist the opportunity for a good alliteration :).

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Cheap Entertainment

Who needs all the channels on Direct TV or the latest and greatest gaming system when you've got spiders! At the family reunion last weekend, all the kids and Scott were thoroughly entertained by the large spider that Trevor brought in his "bug barn."

Since then, Scott's been on the prowl for some spiders of his own. He caught a small one, but I made his day when I trapped a wolf spider in our basement a couple of days ago. (According to Scott, they're migrating inside now in search of a warmer place to spend the cool nights...great, just what I wanted to hear.) The small spider was soon reduced to a pile of legs in the large spider's container. "They're cannibals," Scott tells me. Apparently...

Tonight I again score points for the "wife of the year" contest by finding another wolf spider in the basement. I don't like the trend I'm seeing, but it does fascinate my husband. He put them both in the same small plastic container, and they fought for a while (much to his delight). Now, though, he's a bit disappointed because they've apparently called a truce and are just sitting there (probably making plans to escape next time Scott opens the lid to put in food of some sort).

So next time you have that shoe raised to squash the spider cowering beneath you, ask yourself, "Do I have plans for the evening?" You could just capture yourself some cheap entertainment.

Saturday, October 4, 2008


I feel like I've had a very multicultural day. This morning I hung out with the environmentally friendly, whole foodish, sometimes slightly hippie crowd at the downtown farmer's market. Bought parsnips for the first time to try in a new soup recipie. Wouldn't have known what they were if it weren't for the signs on the produce. They look like albino carrots for those blog readers who are like me and have never experienced parsnips.

Then I made my inagual visit to Urban Outfitters because they were having sidewalk sales. I felt way too "granola" and untrendy to frequent that store very often, but they did have some cool stuff. I came out with a book entitled The Little Prince (good memories from Peru) and a orange pub glass that says "douchebag." Don't think less of me, please. It's a gag-gift for a friend. :)

Next door to Urban Outfitters is American Apparel. The 1980's and early 90's are alive and well in this store. My favorite: hypercolor t-shirts! Of course, they were a different name, but the same wonderful shirt that turns white from warmth. Scott and I wanted one, but couldn't quite make ourselves dish out $34 a piece. But the memories were good.

After lunch, we ran up to Walmart, which, as we all know, is it's own little slice of the world. Enough said on that. Scott was looking for a saudering iron (to put in my new car radio, which has an iPod jack...yea!) but Walmart was out, so we ventured across the street to Tractor Supply Company (TSC).

The parking lot at TSC is 80 percent pickups and SUV's. The guy who held the door for us as we entered was wearing worn jeans and roper shoes. Twangy country played throughout the store. I was one of the few (if there were any more) females in the store. Took me back to growing up on the farm. We always had to stop at TSC for baling twine.

No luck at TSC for the saudering iron, so down the street we went to Hobby Town USA. I'm fairly sure I was the only woman in the store above the age of 10. Did you know they have a big remote control race track and work area attached? We stood at the viewing windows and watched men of all ages work on and race their cars. Excellent people watching.

The final stop of the day was the new pedestrain bridge north of downtown. The best people (and animal) watching of the day yet. A photographer from the World Herald took a picture of us looking out on the water. Who knows, maybe we'll be in the paper this week!

Yes, I feel like I've seen a little of everything today, all within a 15 minute drive of my house. Nice way to spend a beautiful fall afternoon.