Sunday, August 28, 2011

Too Much To Say

Often I read on blogs that have not been updated for a while that the author states that he/she had nothing to say.  Sometimes that is the case for me, too, but this week was the opposite.  Is it possible to have too much to say?  The problem, of course, is that this past week was incredibly busy with school meetings (an overload of information, but so many cool, new things this year!), preparing the classroom for the first day, lesson and long-range planning, getting to know new staff and reconnect with returning teachers, making time to play with the kids, cook dinner, keep up with the household chores (I still can't wrap my head around how much laundry we have to do) and trying to stay sane.  The week provided a plethora of source material for blogging, but I didn't have the time to process the information to be able to write coherent blog posts (unless you enjoy reading gibberish, which I can write on request).  And now that I have a little time, well, I'm already thinking ahead to this coming week.  Last week's ideas and possible posts seem almost irrelevant.  I think instead I'll just jot down my ideas and thoughts on paper today, enjoy the quiet and savour my cup of coffee.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Google A Day

I found an excellent bellwork activity for my students. A Google a Day is a daily puzzle in which a question is given to be solved using the Google search engine. This would allow students to develop and hone their reading comprehension and search engine skills. Now I have to figure out how to use it in a classroom with only one computer (I'm envious of some of the grade seven and eight classes in Ktown that received netbooks this past year).

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


"Papa, I licked them all up off the ottoman!"  It took me a moment to process this information being yelled out to me from the living room.  "Umm...what?!"  While I was trying to fill my summer holiday relaxed brain with six traits writing ideas, the Sprouts had explored the spice and herb drawer, and, unbeknownst to me, the youngest one had made off with a few small containers of cake sprinkles.  Shaking off my befuddlement, I walked into the living room to see sprinkles strewn everywhere (except on the ottoman, which was now wet with saliva), hearing the refrain, "It was an accident!".  I just sighed, shook my head, pulled out the vacuum cleaner, began cleaning, all the while giving thanks for Nana who would be watching the Sprouts in the afternoon.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Family Quote of the Day

FK, upon seeing the large stacks of books on the dining table: "Schoolwork already?  School doesn't start for another two weeks!"

Me, with eyebrows raised: "Uh, huh..."

FK, with knowing grin: "Oh, right, you're a teacher."


As of today we have repainted most of the interior of the house (just two Sprouts' rooms to go), replaced the outdoor tap (now we can wash the car and the Sprouts can run through the sprinkler), and removed non-essential items from the COW (Cabin On Wheels - our trailer) such as the water tank, stove, sink and icebox.  The painting has given the interior of the house a much needed lift.  With some redecorating by my spouse our home now feels "gezellig". The COW is almost ready to be put away for the winter (a few minor things still need to be done to make it ready for a trip down south next summer).  The water tap, along with the bathtub insert (more in a moment), have been on the maintenance list for the past two years, but they seemed to be low on the priority list.  So, with the help and advice of Pop and Opa, we decided to do the work ourselves.

We scheduled this weekend to take out and re-install the tub insert.  It had been poorly caulked and glued, coming slowly off the walls.  When the insert was finally pulled off the walls we were disheartened to see that a lot of mold had grown and spread up the wall (sigh).  So, on Pop's advice, the wet and moldy drywall was cut away and removed.  Some plastic was put up so the shower can be used this week.  We now have to wait for cement board, which will arrive sometime this week, to replace the drywall.  So much for our "weekend warrior" project.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Move, Eat, Learn

Saw these videos on Vimeo and had to share.

3 guys, 44 days, 11 countries, 18 flights, 38 thousand miles, an exploding volcano, 2 cameras and almost a terabyte of footage... all to turn 3 ambitious linear concepts based on movement, learning and food ....into 3 beautiful and hopefully compelling short films.....

= a trip of a lifetime.

move, eat, learn

Rick Mereki : Director, producer, additional camera and editing
Tim White : DOP, producer, primary editing, sound
Andrew Lees : Actor, mover, groover

MOVE from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

EAT from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

LEARN from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Monthly Photo Challenge: 10 Minute Walk

This month's photo challenge for my photog friends and myself was "10 Minutes From Your Front Door."  The theme could be interpreted in a variety of ways, though I chose the easiest way out by taking photos within a ten minute walk of my front door.  I had great ideas for this challenge, but a few things slowed the creative process this month: painting the interior of the house, visits from family and friends, camping, poison ivy and maintenance staff.  The visits, painting and camping were good things (and I took lots of pics!), but as for the poison ivy and maintenance staff, not so great.  A huge (I mean huge!) poison ivy patch has grown over the path to the lake, so I couldn't go down to the lake (I am extremely allergic to poison ivy).  Also, to the disappointment of various tenants, all the wildflowers growing on the front hill and beside the houses were cut down by the maintenance staff (not sure why), so, no wildflower shots.  Unfortunately I have only a few pictures this month for the challenge.  However, next month's challenge (Alliteration) is already in full swing, and I have some photos already for that (check back at the end of the month of August).

2011 06 29 Old Mission Church 001

2011 07 09 Clouds 004

2011 07 12 Dragonflies 020

2011 07 07 Ladybug 008

2011 07 05 Insect 001

2011 07 31 Sunlit 004