Monday, February 14, 2011
Happy Valentine's Day!
Friday, February 11, 2011
I want to open that boy's head up and see just what is going on in there.
And now for something not completely different, since it involves Matt.
And Hayley. This has to do with the monthly parent newsletter sent out by the middle school that Matt and Hayley attend. Since school began, my children have appeared in photographs in the newsletter 4 out of the 6 issues. And none of the photos are recognitions for outstanding studentry. They are just random photos from activities and classes in the school.
I have taken the liberty of copying some of the pictures so you can see that I'm telling the truth.
From October:Here is Hayley playing a clarinet in a middle school band concert outside the high school. I did not take this picture. I arrived half an hour too late and thus did not see them play.
From November (and please excuse the elongated picture. The select tool didn't work very well on this particular picture):
Hayley appeared in November too:
And here again, (no labeling or circling, because I couldn't get Paint to circle in any other color but black) She's wearing the green hat and tunic (it was dress up for Halloween day at school)
They didn't appear in December, but Hayley did crop up twice in January's newsletter:
Her English class was reading "A Midsummer Night's Dream" as a play and she was one of the readers. And here she is again. She thinks she was playing Quince that day, hence the hat (although why a beretish hat represents Quince is beyond my power to fathom)(At least she wasn't playing Bottom--the other girl is bottom, hence the donkey ears, which I thought at first were big feathers).
And finally, this brings us to February's newsletter. Which I deleted without reading from my email account because I figured certainly none of the children are in the newsletter AGAIN. And then I thought I should check to make sure. And so I went into the deleted folder, found the link, and voila, there is Hayley in her foods class:
Can Hayley and Matt keep up the good work of weaseling their way into future newsletters? We shall see.
At the top of the page, he starts with this:
A simple math equation for Sara, 11(2)=x, answer on back. [He sent this around my 22nd birthday so this letter would have been from early Dec 1989 when Dave was a freshman in high school]
Dear Sara and Jim (and the little one) [I was pregnant with Kate],
Very very cold here. No snow. That's very, very bad for me and the ski team. I got new skis and poles, and boots and the whole bit. Now all I need to learn is how to ski. I got on the B honor roll for the 1st quarter! That's quite an accomplishment for me at least. I don't know if I told you this already, but I got a student recognition award for history.
Jim, here's the new Oakland Athletics anthem:
Verse 1: "We are losers, We can't play baseball"
Verse 2. "Jose Canseco uses steroids, Dave Stewart can't pitch"
Chorus: "The As stink!"
Now how about that folks!!!
Atlanta Braves RULE!!!
How does it feel to have to wait for your first child? Anxious? He/she will probably grow up to be an Atlanta Braves fan!
Thursday, February 10, 2011
Sara--Hi How's collage [sic], sounds big, fun and easy to get lost in. Jr. High is so fun. I know so many new people. I'm on the wrestleing [sic] team and we even have cheerleaders...School's kind [of] tough though like pts and stuff assignment cards. It's all very proper.
Sara, Hola, que tal?
Tell me some college things. I can't stand this paper. It's very lame [he wrote a letter on stationary with Garfield jumping into a pile of flowers on it]. Mom bought Twinkies for us kids lunches. Weird.
Deer Sarah [Mike went through a phase of purposeful alternate spellings]
I got a cd player (don't tell mom). It's real cool and I got my thumbnail pierced. I showed it to J_____ V_____ A________ (flaming art teacher) [Mike's words, not mine. And he also wrote the teacher's full name which I am blotting out in the interest of privacy] and he said, "Hmmm I've never thought of that one." I almost died laughing. He recently got his nipples pierced you know.
Sara and Jim,
I learned how to make a new bomb, no shrapnel, very cheap and people like to buy them. They're made of cardboard and are 3-4 times as powerful as an M-80 (Don't tell mom) [he says that a lot in his letters]. I've been very good...I haven't been caught sneaking out or blowing stuff up yet. (don't tell mom) [I like that he considers himself "good" because he hasn't been caught]
And one more excerpt:
Sara, Jim, Katie,
I also got on the pep-fest committee. I wrote an application and they let me on cause they said I had good ideas. At the first pepfest me and 3 friends are gonna be called down for class competition. What will happen is they will call freshmen, sophomores and juniors down and make them dance to really stupid music (hula, ballet, etc) because it's a dance competition. Then they will call us down and we'll be wearing bell bottoms etc and we'll disco to "Night Fever" by the Bee Gees. And the judges will score us the highest.
I've been accumulating quite a store of disco gear. the other day I wore a red & white pair of checkered bell bottoms to school, and a friend of mine wore a plaid pair. The disco thing is catching on, people at school are going out to goodwills and ragstocks to find disco clothes. Everyday I play disco down in the weight room at school. The whole senior class is converted to disco. I'm so proud of them.
And then he signs off with a symbol drawing that he labeled "sign of the disco movement."
Happy Thursday to you. And if your birthday is today, I hope it's a good one!
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
And because I have nothing to post about today, I am going to post the contents of one of the letters, written 25 September 1986 by my brother Jake, who was a freshman in high school at the time, and I was a freshman in college. I'm gonna type it as he wrote it, even though it pains me not to change his non-standard usages to standard ones.
I am writing this letter on a computer in the southern wing of the building. This computer center has one Apple IIe and aaaah, well I guess it's the only one [I'm butting in here. The building Jake is referring to is my mother's house. Yes, she had an Apple IIe! She was ahead of the times back then, courtesy of her husband, my stepdad Gary.] It is so much easier to write letters with this Applewriter disk Gary let me use [floppy disks!]. Ha Ha Ha I thought that was funny so should you.
In one of the previous letters I sent you I shouldn't have made that crack about having mono. 'Cause guess what, unh huh, I came down with it within a week and boy was it terrible...But I got over it faster than you did. I didn't sleep as much as you did either. I suppose that we just have very peculiar immune systems in the wonderful things that God made that we call bodies. But the wonde--oops, don't want to get sidetracked with Robert Schuller language. So give me money--oops there I go again. It's an epidemic going around school these days [the Robert Schuller jokes. And presumably the mono too]
Mr. Geldert [school band teacher] flicked his hair back 16 times in one day. One of my friends counted him doing that.
OK, I'm back. There. I have fulfilled my blogging duty for today. You may look forward to a Mike letter soon and maybe even a Dave one. Then I'll be done because that's all the brothers I have.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
In this picture, Hayley blows air through the double reed which she has inserted into the mouthpiece of her instrument, thus making some noise, which you can't hear because it's only a picture, not a video.
Here is a labeled picture of the band as they are standing up to move off the stage to make room for the older band.
This is a picture of a face that Hayley made. I had to guess at the conversation. I might have been wrong.
This pictures is not of Hayley, but of Katie's former flute teacher. She's in the Bloomington band.
After the concert, Mrs. O (the flute teacher) approached Hayley because she recognized her from all the times I brought Hayley to flute lessons with Katie. Mrs. O says she remembers both Matt and Hayley because they were such quiet and well-behaved children during flute lessons. She invited them over any time for cookies. When I told Matt about it later, he said, "Oh wow! I remember that she had the best cookies at her house and her husband had a cool model car collection and he gave me one!" Matt was about 4 or 5 at the time. Possibly even 3 when Katie started flute lessons.
So the concert went well and Mrs. O and I had a nice conversation. I enjoyed seeing her again. And Hayley's band played well.
Monday, February 7, 2011
But mommy guilt set in (horrid horrid mommy guilt--why is it I feel like the scum of the earth when I can't do a treasure hunt, but I have no problem yelling at the kids until my voice goes numb? Mommy guilt is a false friend) and I spent yesterday morning before church coming up with three little puzzles to satisfy my need to make the obtaining of Valentine candy difficult for my children.
Here's how it's going to go. (Kate, if you read this and spill the beans to any of your siblings via text or facebook or phone or any other manner, you will not receive any packages from me for a year. Don't spoil the fun for the others!) The three will come home from school to three pieces of paper taped to the front door. They will be allowed to pick one. One is a maze and two are quiz-like in nature. The maze has little numbers all over it--the goal is to get through the maze and to write down each number as it comes up in the path. So at the end, the child will have a string of various numbers. The quizzes will also yield numerical strings (one quiz has to do with hymns and he or she will need to write down the hymn number of each hymn quoted, the other quiz has to do with the periodic table of elements and he or she will have to write down the element number of each element that is the answer to a trivia quiz question).
Then around the house, they will notice little pieces of paper, each with a letter and a number on it. They will go around the house to figure out which letter corresponds to which number and thus they will decode a message that will tell them where a candy treasure is hidden. I'm going to hide the pieces of paper all over the walls of the house, some in obvious places, others will not be so obvious.
I'm excited for Valentine's Day! I'm going to have my camera ready for stash-finding!
Would you like a sneaky peak at a couple of the quiz questions? (the maze I made using puzzlemaker.com--a favorite website of mine for all my puzzle-making needs)
Here you go:
1. Also known as "spelter"
2. Because of its reactivity to water, it is usually stored under cover of a viscous hydrocarbon, usually petroleum jelly
1. Once he groaned in blood and tears, now in glory he appears
2. Bringing happiness and joy, rich blessings from above
Can you answer correctly?
Saturday, February 5, 2011
I still owe mom $6.00. I need to do jobs to pay her back.
I will do these jobs:
I will do them all by this date: ____________________
This means that I will do _____ job every ________ day at this time of the day _____________________ in order to meet the deadline.
If I do not complete the jobs by the time I have promised, I will pick out double the number of jobs on the list and choose a new deadline. I understand that further missed deadlines will result in mom posting a big sign in my room that says, “I cannot borrow money from Mom because I don’t pay her back. I will have to earn money BEFORE I want it and I will not ask mom for money.” And I will have to do more jobs.
I understand that doing this teaches me how to manage money, how the economic and financial system in our country works, and that I do not get anything for free. I have to work in order to earn money.
I also understand that I will not be borrowing money until this debt is paid off. And even then, all requests will be subject to harsh scrutiny and might be turned down.
Signed _________________________________________________ date _____________________
The guilty party laughed at the contract, but recognized that it was necessary and filled it out and signed it. I will get my six dollars' worth of good hard labor (I pay a pittance) in two weeks.
The guilty party taped it to a mirror where it will be seen so I have high hopes for a resolution without having to resort to the big sign in the room.
Money borrowing does not happen often, so this isn't an example of moochery and sponginess.
Also, I have pictures from Paul's band concert last Monday.
The band was the best I'd ever heard it. They played very well.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
But now I don't trust celly anymore. It'll play dead now whenever it wants to just to frustrate me.
And the children continue to frustrate. Last night when I got home from another late shift sub job, Jim informed me that Paul had informed him that there was a band concert that night. Grrr. Not that I grrr at band concerts, but I do grrrrr at children who forget to tell me of things I want to attend. The rug of a relaxing evening was pulled out from under my tired feet. Actually, I had to go grocery shopping--that was my original plan--but that was scuttled. And now we need milk and I don't have time today to shop. I'm only blogging now because I have an interlude of a few minutes between work and another appointment.
Dinner tonight? Whatever Jim can scrounge up because I will be working AGAIN this afternoon (sixth school day afternoon/early evening in a row--the money is nice, but when do I go grocery shopping?) I keep saying tomorrow, but tomorrow never comes.