Sunday, August 31, 2008

Our Labor Day weekend trip

Every Labor Day we like to make the long drive out to sticker Grandma's house in Burney. During Labor Day weekend each year they have a local fair that my Dad loved and did all of the electrical work for each year. He had also hoped that when my children got older he could take them to the fair. He told me that he had Labor Day weekend reserved for his grandchildren and that would be something special he wanted to share with them each year.

Unfortunately my father never had the opportunity to take my girls to the fair. He passed away when my oldest daughter was 21 months old. Funds that were donated to his Memorial were given to this fair and two bricks were made in his memory at their fountain.

I believe we have made it the last three out of four years to the fair to remember my father and take time to do something he enjoyed so much. The last two years sticker grandma took pictures by the fountain with the girls and the year before that I took a picture next to the fountain with KK.

Do you know what was crazy? This was one of those weekends that we had been experiencing 100 degree weather so I didn't pack any sweatshirts or jackets for myself or the girls. For some strange reason the weather turned and it was cold! I had to buy all three of us some sweatshirts so we could be warm.
BTW the top two pictures are KK's first ride. She really wanted to ride the dragon roller coaster. However, I think once she realized that she couldn't ride with Mommy and sister didn't want to go that this wasn't exactly fun anymore. The ride operator was awesome though and let me take her off the ride after its first turn around the track. He even gave us our tickets back! KK loves roller coasters but I think she loves them when she is not alone!

The first ride they ended up going together on was the Merry Go Round. This is definitely always one of their favorites! Sticker Grandma joined them to make sure they were safe and no one fell off!

The second ride they chose was the cars. KK was determined to ride the black car and Aly wanted the red. They both didn't mind being in separate cars and enjoyed the ride.

The last an final ride was the airplane ride. They liked this one as well and both rode in the same plane together. After the rides we ate our picnic lunch and watched the parade. Shortly after the parade we left and went back to Grandma's house. We all had a good time.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Aly's future husband

This weekend we went for the long drive to visit sticker Grandma. While we were at her house Aly and Grandma began having a conversation about who Aly will live with when she grows up. It went something like this:
Aly: When I grow up I want to live with a boy so I can have babies.
Grandma: Who will you live with? What kind of boy would you like for your husband?
Aly: I will marry my friend Nathan.
Grandma: What do you like about Nathan? What makes him a good husband?
Aly: He is smart and funny and nice. Oh and he has black hair just like my Daddy!

3 months of cutting

A year ago we had five large trees fell so that we could keep our house safe from the trees possibly falling on us. This summer hubby decided to tackle the large project. He started in the beginning of June delimbing the trees and then cutting them all into rounds. The tough part was that when the trees were fell three of them fell criss cross over one another. It was a lot of hard work every Saturday and/or Sunday but hubby finally has the hard part done. His next step will be to get enough rounds off of the hill to split for firewood. At least he will only need to get what we need for this year! My guess is all of this wood should last 3+ years! Yeah for us!

Friday, August 29, 2008

My first day back subbing--what a nightmare!

I couldn't have even imagined my day would be so difficult subbing. I actually thought the day would go pretty well and my only trouble may be Aly not treating me as a teacher but as a Mom--we all know the mom treatment can be pretty hard to handle when they are argueing and trying to get their way. However, Aly was a perfect Angel. She treated me exactly like she would treat her teacher. She was a model student, listened to everything I said, sat quietly when she needed to, and did all her work in a neat, timely fashion.

I never imagined that her class could have one of the most difficult child I have came across in my seven years of teaching! The little girl is five years old and will be turning six in October. For privacay sake we will call her Diane. Diane was difficult the moment we walked into the room. She quickly grabbed name tags on the table and started switching them around. Once that was taken care of she sat at her table and would not work on her coloring page. She began bothering other students around her. She would take the crayon and try coloring on their page, she would bang the crayon really hard on her paper, and she would argue with everyone around her. I was already getting exhausted at this point dealing with her.

As a sub you want to try and keep the same rules and routines as the regular classroom teacher. The teacher's form of discipline was to take away minutes from choice time. Choice time happened after lunch each day. So I give her some warnings during her misbehaving and let her know that I will take choice time away. Of course she is begging not to and doesn't really change her behavior.

While we were at carpet time learning about the letter I she is continually poking at her friends and bothering them. I warn her that if she doesn't stop I will be moving her to a new spot. She continues poking and bothering other children so I ask her to move to the letter Z on the carpet. This is when her explosive behavior happens. She is screaming, no I don't want to! You can't make me. I don't have to listen to you. You can't tell me what to do. I tell her if she doesn't move than she will have to go to the office. Relunctently she moves but starts screaming at me, I hate you. I don't like you. You don't like me. You are mean. I don't want you in our class! I tell her that she needs to be quiet or she will need to go to the office. She finally quiets down but sits with her back to me--I obviously am going to pick my battles so I don't even address that.

Her difficult behavior continues at table time. She breaks crayons, peels the paper off, scribbles on others papers again..... I tell her I will be moving her to another spot on the table if she doesn't stop.

Back to carpet time. She wants to answer any and every question I have and if I don't call on her each time she gets angry and shouts out that she wanted to tell the answer. She gets angry and tells me I am stupid. She throws her body on the floor in a tantrum. ( I seriously was trying to call on her as much as possible too so that I could give her some positive attention. Obviously I have to call on other students so she can't have a turn as frequently as she wants)

I am telling you this girl wore me out. By their first recess at 10:00 a.m. an hour into the day I was already feeling mentally exhausted trying to figure out how to deal with her. It had been four years since I had been in the classroom and here I am given a crash course figure it out my first day back. It makes it more difficult when it is not your classroom too. My last school didn't allow time outs so I wasn't sure what the school rules were here. I did find out at lunch that you could give time outs so I was ready to implement those when I came back.

This girl has me really worried for my daughter's educational sake. This girl takes up so much of the instructional time being disciplined that the children don't have much opportunity to learn. Not to mention the bad behaviors they are learning from this girl. In the past two weeks Aly has gotten arguementative with me and has started throwing more fits. I wonder if she is learning these behaviors from this girl.

I asked my daughter if Diane behaves like this for the teacher and she said yes. I seperately asked another student in the class if Diane behaves like that everyday and she said yes. Annette also asked her son for me if that child behaves like that everyday and he said yes. I am going to volunteer in the classroom and see how she acts with the teacher. If it is the same I am going to talk with the teacher and ask if they have an SST (Student Study Team) in the works and if they are considering a one on one aide to help manage her behavior. If something doesn't change I may consider pulling Aly out and letting her attend the charter home school where she attends class two days a week and I teach her the other three. Then next year I can send her back to Gold Oak with the condition she is not in the same class as that other child.

What an exhausting day subbing. I am telling you if that was not my daughter's class I would never sub in there again! I certainly hope they do something to address this child's behavior!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

I am so thrilled!

Today when I was picking Aly up from school her teacher asked me if I could sub in her classroom. I told her I had to find childcare for KK and I would call her back in an hour and let her know. After trying to reach hubby for almost an hour he finally got in touch with me and said that he would work from home and watch KK so that I could sub tomorrow. I was thrilled and so was Aly.

You know what is the best part? I haven't taught in four years since I decided to stay home and this will be my first day back at work. I can't believe that my first day back teaching will be in Aly's classroom. What a great way to spend my first day back! Aly's teacher said I could bring something in to do with the kids if I wanted to. I asked her what letter they were on and she said the letter I. So I will be bringing an art project having to do with the letter I. I think I will pack some books to read out loud just in case I have extra time.

I hope I can sleep tonight. I am so excited I can't wait!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

How far do you walk in a day?

Back in June my hubby bought me a pedometer for our anniversary. Yeah, I know, funny gift but it was something I had expressed that I wanted. I thought it would be fun to find out how much I walk in a day or how much I walk when we go places like a fair, or Disneyland.

So today I finally pulled it out and put it on first thing this morning. Turns out I walked a total of 7.37 miles and 15,573 steps! I know that 3 miles of that was on the treadmill and 1/2 mile of that was the distance it takes to walk to and from my daughter's bus stop twice a day. So that pretty much leaves me with almost four miles of walking around my house in an average day! Granted I live in a three story house but I really didn't think I would walk that much! Crazy huh?

I think I will continue to wear the pedometer for awhile just for fun. Could be fun to track how active/inactive I may be on any given day.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Why breakfast is so important for school age children.

I never knew that children would need breakfast so bad until I had my first child enter kindergarten. I am lucky that she eats a good breakfast and have learned that it is super important. Everyday I pack her a great lunch filled with 4-5 nutritious choices and I also pack a 10 ounce container filled with 1/2 juice, 1/2 water. By the time she gets home she still has 3/4 of her lunch and 3/4 of her juice. She is starving and very thirsty and sits at the table after school each day to scarf her lunch down. This is at almost 3:00 p.m. everyday.

I thought perhaps my child was unique in this experience but after asking around to many other parents they say the same thing. Their children are barely eating at school and are starving by the time they come home. For my child I am sure it is because she is too busy talking and doesn't get enough eating in. For other children it could be that they would rather scarf something quick down and go play on the playground.

So if you think about it if your child doesn't have a good breakfast they are literally starving most of the day. This makes it difficult for them to concentrate and learn. So wake up earlier and get that good first meal in. It will help your child tremendously!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Preschool-the dreaded phone call

This morning I knew I had to get up the courage to call KK's original preschool to tell the director that we would not be returning. I didn't want to make the call as I don't like to disappoint people or have any possible confrontations but I knew I was the only one who could do it!

So I spent the night tossing and turning instead of sleeping trying to figure out how I will word our departure. Here is how it went:

Me: Hi Deanna, this is KK's mom. I wanted to let you know that we decided it would be best for KK if we switch her to a local preschool so that we can have a consistent schedule for her. This will allow for me to take her to preschool on my own without having hubby involved which will allow KK to sleep in the same time everyday.

Director: I am sorry to hear that you have decided to go somewhere else. Do you mind if I ask where?

Me: I answer her and tell her it is the local Montessori.

Director: KK's favorite things to do here was dinosaurs and farm animals. She spent an hour lining up farm animals here. Do they have farm animals at her new school?

Me: No, they don't have those type of toys, they have learning type toys and KK will be playing with those. (BTW I know she knew that)

Director: That is such a shame as that is KK's favorite thing to play with. Hopefully she won't miss that too much and will find something else she is interested in.

Me: We have dinosaurs and farm animals at home. She plays with them all the time here.

Director: Well that is good she will still get that at home. You know she still may need a nap at the new preschool. She ran herself ragged here and just plain tired herself out.

Me: I know but I am kind of thinking with the consistent morning wake up routine and her being able to sleep in later that she won't be tired. If she does need a nap they have an OPTIONAL nap time and it is only ONE hour long. I think that will work out for us.

Director: Her activity level at our center was very high. Perhaps at the Montessori she won't be as active. She may not need a nap since she will not have as much dramatic play. You know dramatic play is very important you need to make sure she is getting that if she isn't getting it from her new school.

Me: I will.

Director: Will you be bringing her in this week since you are already paid up?

Me: You know I thought long and hard about it and feel like from a child development perspective it would be better for her if I don't bring her back. I am afraid if I do that she will spend the week trying to adjust to your center and then I will be pulling her out and she will have to adjust to a new center.

Director: Well most normal children can handle change like that. In your situation with KK needing a nap and you not wanting her to have one could cause a negative experience for her. It is probably better for her not to come back.

Me: As much as I would like to be selfish and take time for myself I think we will just keep her home.

Director: Alright, well if you find your needs changing I hope you will consider us. Perhaps when KK is a little older and she doesn't need a nap anymore you might want to have her come back.

Me: Thanks, things in life always change and you never know what your needs will be. If we need you in the future I will give you a call. Thanks so much. Bye

That was what I can remember of the conversation. Even though I tried to make it about a convenience factor for our family it was still obvious to her that it was about the nap. (Although really the convenience factor was a big reason we changed, the nap thing just made us look into change) BTW this is the director that was on my interview panel for that job I interviewed for and my other daughter Aly went to this preschool for 2 years. She went on the parent participation side though and KK was going on the daycare side.

All in all I am glad it is over and I really am looking forward to KK attending a preschool so close to our home. Hopefully she will enjoy it. She doesn't start until September 8th, I guess I will be posting a first day of Montessori post that day. Does that mean I have to buy her a new first day of school outfit????

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Preschool changes

Ever since Thursday's pick up from preschool I have been having a hard time feeling good about KK attending that preschool. Saturday night I started thinking about the local Montessori that is only 8 miles from our house. KK's current preschool is 18 miles away. So I started thinking, "What if I looked into that preschool? I know they are more expensive but Hubby wouldn't have to help out with driving her to school because it is close enough to our house that I could drop her off there and still make it on time to sub at Aly's school.

So I didn't end up sleeping well. This morning I decided to call my friend Jess who had her daughter at that school last year and will be sending her the next two years as well. She didn't know the prices but told me she would forward me an email. So I called my other friend Kristi who will be sending her son there. She didn't know the prices but told me that they were actually having an Open House today so we could go and check it out for ourselves and get the price list.

I asked Hubby if he wanted to go check out the preschool and he did. We all went as a family to the Montessori Open House. KK loved it. She especially liked the fish tank and the playground. Hubby liked how it was more academic than her current preschool and liked the structure that it provided. We also liked how they allow the children to serve their own snack including pouring their drinks as well as cleaning the tables and mopping the floors afterwards. They have a good ratio of 7:1 as well.

So on the drive home we talked it over. We weighed the pros and cons.

Closer to home, I could do all the drop off and picks ups myself. Hubby's current work schedule is back to being major overtime so this provides a relief for him.

More academic and structured.

Flexibility for my subbing. I can choose two normal days for her to attend but if I get a sub job on a different day I can trade days.

Later start time of 9:00 a.m. KK will be able to sleep in until her normal wake up time of between 7:30-7:45.

Local friends, everyone attending this school lives near us.

8 miles away versus 18. 12 minute drive versus 25 minutes.

I don't have to kill time waiting for KK to get out of preschool. (with her other preschool being 25 minutes from home I couldn't justify spending the gas to go home so I would run errands and kill time until she got out if it was a day I brought her)

The director is really nice and very flexible. The center has only been open a year so it is still small and there is room for growth. This is what allows her the ability to be so flexible. If you miss a day because your child is sick she lets you make it up too. If Monday is a holiday you can come on another day that week.

They teach them to become more independent. Something I should be doing more with both of my girls, instead I tend to do everything myself because I think it is easier.

Nap time is a choice made by the parents and if you do decide to let them nap they only nap for one hour.


It costs $40 more dollars a month

They have less opportunity for socializing in large groups.

The preschool is 800 feet higher in elevation which means more snow. This could be challenging at some points during the winter.

They have to wear slippers indoors--is this a positive or a negative--who knows but right now she doesn't have any slippers so I will need to buy her some.

I think they aren't allowed to wear character shirts like Dora the Explorer--good thing KK is over her now..

The playground is smaller.

They start a week after Labor Day and end a week before Memorial Day.

I have to tell the Director of KK's other preschool we are leaving.

So after weighing the pro's and con's we decided it was best for the whole family if KK changes preschools to this local school. Hopefully it will be a good decision and KK will enjoy it.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Tie Dying our goal-family mickey mouse shirts!

Today I decided to try and tie dye Mickey Mouse shirts for our next family trip to Disneyland. We love Disneyland so much that it is the place we end up going when ever hubby is fortunate enough to get a few days off of work. (Most of the time he can only manage 1-3 days off so Disneyland is close enough to accommodate this type of mini vacation)

Here are what my hands look like after tie dying because I am too lazy to wear gloves!

Here are pink pants for Aly, KK, and me--mine are Capri's! The black and teal swirl shirts are for hubby and KK although I am not sure if hubby is liking his that much. Anyone else want it? Comment in the comment section and if you like it I will send it to you. It is a men's XL.

This blue one turned out great for hubby and he liked it too! The second picture is my friend Annette's shirts that she tie dyed. She left them with me to rinse and wash since I was already doing mine. She wanted me to post hers because she will be gone for the weekend and wants to see them.

Here is how our Mickey Mouse shirts turned out. The first one is Aly's, then Kk's, and then mine. I actually like how mine turned out the best! Lucky me!

The last two are hubby's and his Mom's. She will be joining us on our next mini trip to Disneyland. We are just doing a quick weekend trip now that Aly is in school. I thought it would be fun for all of us to have matching shirts. Hubby's Mickey Mouse head has a little bit of black outside. I told him I could make him a new shirt or use a bleach pen. He said it was fine and he liked it how it is. So what do you think?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Preschool issues

On Tuesday when I picked up KK from preschool one of her teachers mentioned that they felt like she needed a nap and that I should change her to the napping schedule. I told the teacher that she hasn't taken naps at home in well over 9 months. The teacher said they she cuddled a lot with them and seemed very tired. So I left it at that.

I decided to call the preschool director this morning to discuss their concerns over whether or not she should nap. Here is how our conversation went (the condensed version):

Me: I was just calling to talk to you about whether or not KK would be on your napping schedule. When I picked her up from school one of your teachers told me that they felt she should be a napper.

Director: Wow, I am surprised that one of my staff members would make a judgement call like that after one day. She should take two weeks to get to know the children and then after that make suggestions accordingly. I am sorry if she made you feel like you didn't know what was best for your child. I will talk to all of my staff and make sure that they know the first two weeks are a trial time to observe the children and let them adjust to the environment. In the beginning they may just be overloaded and their needs could change.

Me: I am sure that KK is more active at preschool than at home but I am sure she was just cuddling up to the teachers because she is a very affectionate child. I wouldn't be surprised though if she was tired today as we woke her up an hour earlier than normal so Daddy could bring her into preschool. If you end up feeling she needs naps on the days Daddy brings her in I can definitely support that.

Director: Let's just see how she does today and go from there.

I hung up from our conversation feeling like she totally supported me.

Here is what happened when I arrived to pick her up at 3:00.

Director: We tried to keep KK from taking a nap but she just couldn't handle it. When it was time to go outside she was playing with the farm animals and didn't want to stop and go outside. She started crying. We took her outside and cuddled her and she fell asleep at 2:30. This isn't going to work for us. She needs to be a napper.

Me: I can understand her needing a nap on Thursdays when Daddy brings her but on the days that I bring her I don't think she will want or need one.

Director: We need to be consistent. It will confuse her if she is napping one day and not the next.

Me: I can understand that. How about on the days that I bring her you wake her up after an hour?

Director: Absolutely not, she needs the full two hours. We won't wake her up.

Me: That is going to cause her to be until 10 or 11 at night. That will be really hard for our routine and schedule.

Director: I don't think so, I think she needs the full two hours. She is on the go here and tires herself out.

That is the shortened version of our conversation. She was not going to budge. Our child will need to be a napper and they will not wake her early. I guess I just better hope that on the days I bring her it takes her a long time to fall asleep and when nap time is over the other kids may end up waking her up with their noise. I am going to use next week as a trial period for our family and if she is up till 10 or 11 I am going to talk to the director again. If we don't come to some kind of compromise we may be looking somewhere else.

I suppose what bothers me the most about the whole situation is that she was so supportive in the morning and really wanted a two week trial period. She stressed that they were there to support the families, not the other way around, and that they wanted to do what the families needed because that is their job. Then she totally changes her tune by the time I come to pick up my child! What is up with that???

So now that my daughter is going to be a napper she needed a blanket. Here is the blanket I made her:

KK's favorite animal is an elephant. I already had this fabric in my sewing drawer. I let her pick out the bottom flannel fabric and she picked out moons and stars. I think it turned out cute and it only took 15 minutes to make. I hope this will help her feel more comfortable with napping at preschool.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Two great deals at Safeway this week!

There are two great deals to be had at Safeway this week! I got all of this loot for only $5.00! The 12 bottles of sprite were free thanks to their B1G1 free promotion plus the B1G1 free coupon in the Safeway Olympic Savings coupon book. Between the coupon and the sale they cancel each other out making them free! The fuze drinks are on one of those catalina promotions. They are on sale for $1 a piece, when you buy 4 you get a catalina back for $3 off your next purchase of 4. Each time you do this a catalina prints out making it so that each bottle of fuze costs you .25 cents! I bought 20 bottles!

We don't drink Sprite in our house but I did get them anyway because I am pretty confident that the PTC at Aly's elementary school could use them for an upcoming school event. So for now I am donating 12 bottles to them and I may go back and get more after I find out just how many they want.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

KK's first day of preschool!

Today KK had her first day of preschool. I was surprised that she was shy and clingy when I brought her in. I sat with her through morning circle time and decided to leave when she was at outdoor recess having a great time! I returned shortly before 2. She was quietly playing with some toys stacking them up. She was very happy to see me. I asked one of her teachers how she did and the teacher said, "She cried a little bit a few times. She wanted us to cuddle her a few times. She had lots of fun and played really hard!" I asked KK how she liked it and she said, "I like preschool, I play with the dinosaurs and boys.!"

Here she is posing on the stairs with her teddy! She was really excited to go to preschool but she really wanted to take the big yellow bus to preschool instead of mommy's car. The second picture is KK playing in the playhouse.

In the first picture KK is climbing on their climbing dome. We have the same climbing dome at our house and she is quite a monkey on it! In the second picture she is climbing on the pirate ship.

KK will go to preschool two days a week this year. I will likely substitute teach on some of those days. If I am not called to teach I will enjoy some quality ME time which I have waited 5 years to get! I did get to spend some time alone shopping today and it was great! No children screaming and fighting, no children pulling on my shirt asking me to buy them toys, etc.....

Monday, August 18, 2008

Aly's First Day Riding the Bus!

Today we decided to have Aly and Nathan ride the bus to and from school. We showed them on Friday where they would stand in line for the bus and the routine so they would be ready for it. We felt like today would be a good day to start them on the new routine. It went really well too!

Here is a picture of KK and Aly walking up the hill to the bus stop. We bring out dog Nevada with us too! The second picture is Annette, Nathan, and Aly waiting for the bus to come. KK decided to get into Annette's van and wait with Jordan.

Here are some more pics. Check them out getting on the bus! After they got on the bus, Annette went down to the school to make sure they got off o.k. and found their kindergarten line. The good news is when the kids get off of the bus a kindergarten teacher is waiting for them to bring them to their line. The same is the case in the afternoon. A kindergarten teacher brings them to the bus line and the bus driver meets them at the line. This makes me feel better about the kids riding the bus to and from school. It makes me feel a little more secure that they will know where to go when the get off the bus!

Aly was excited when she got home! Here she is getting off of the bus. She told me she liked everything about the bus and was excited she gets to ride it!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Finding Nemo doll blanket and a frog doll blanket

After making the Little Mermaid doll blanket and pillow for Alyssa's friend, the girls both really wanted one for themselves. KK decided to pick out Finding Nemo fabric which I already had a good stash of and Alyssa chose frog fabric that I already had as well!

KK has really taken a liking to Teddy and has been dressing him and feeding him his bottle. She really liked the blanket and pillow.

I thought this was a really cute picture of her even though her shirt is all dirty!
Here is Aly's frog blanket. It looks so cute. She has also started playing with her Teddy everyday and feeding him a bottle and changing his diaper.....that is where KK is learning it from!
She was really excited to see her new blanket and pillow as well. She wrapped up her Teddy in his blanket and carried him around for awhile.
I am glad that just a short amount of time sewing on a Sunday afternoon could bring so much joy to them.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

DVD players and singing

I don't know what is wrong with our family but for some reason we can never seem to keep a working dvd player. Is it perhaps that I wasn't taking proper care and using a special lens cleaning disk? Who knows? My car dvd players starting breaking down about three months ago. I bought the lens cleaning kit and got another month out of them but alas, they are now dead, with no way to resurrect them. I have had problems with our home dvd players too. I think the one in our living room has actually been broken down for over a year. It is a software problem as we had bough a dvd player that could also record television and work like a dvr where it searched for programs itself. This dvd player has given us problems from the beginning, poor quality, what can we do?

When we were having problems with our living room dvd player we bought a dvd player for our bedroom since we seemed to use it more in there. Recently this dvd player has been giving us problems too thanks to our cute little three year old who constantly loved opening and closing the disk drawer and putting dvd's in it herself. So now the door gets stuck often! Hubby showed me a trick last night to get it to release so hopefully that will continue working.

Since all of this dvd trouble we have changed out lives to listening to much more music. KK has been thrilled and requests her favorite songs over and over again. Her two favorite songs are "Kung Foo Fighting" and Hukkuna Mattata." She sings them even when they are not playing. It is so cute.

So I made a decision not to replace our car dvd player since music is such a better choice. The girls are older now so it should be easier to occupy them. I spent the entire night on Saturday making 5 different cd's of children's music for the girls. I am sure they will be thrilled to listen to some new music. I look forward to hearing KK walking through the house singing some new songs she learns to love!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Our Gas and Grocery Bill for the Month of July

July's grocery bill came in at $261.48. Just where I would like it. We did try to eat more from what we had on stock and buy less at the grocery store. My freezer was getting too full so I made the commitment to try and eat from what we have stored.

Our gas bill came in at $628.30 which was down $112.93 from June's bill. This was due partly to decreased gas prices, me staying home a ton, and that week we stayed by hubby's work in a hotel which cut down on three days of commuting! I still want my Corolla back. I paid the mechanic on July 5th to do an alignment but he hasn't done anything! I called him and asked a few times and one time he told me he changed his mind and thought it might be a joint in the transmission and that he needed to call his transmission friend. The next time I called he said he hadn't heard back from his friend so he thought he would just change the transmission fluid and see if he found metal shavings in it. Man I want that car back!

I know my gas bill will go up in August. Even though fuel prices are going down with Aly starting kindergarten and me driving her back and forth I will be using a lot more gas. Her school is 8 miles each way which brings in a grand total of 32 miles a day. Multiply that times 5 and you get 90 miles a week just on Aly's school trips. We are going to have her ride the bus at least 3 days a week but in the beginning I am driving her. KK's preschool starts too which will be 36 miles twice a week. Ohh the pains of living out in the middle of nowhere! Can someone convince my husband to move closer to civilization cause I sure can't!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A great reason why I didn't get the job

Back in July I had an interview for a position as a Quality E.C.E. Facilitator. Click here to see post about it. Anyway, I had decided I didn't want the job and was not chosen anyway. So today I decided to look up on their website to see who they hired. Man, they were like 10 times more qualified than I was! I totally don't feel bad at all that I wasn't offered the position. I would have hired that person too! Here is her bio:

Elizabeth grew up in a small agricultural town in Northern California and pursued her education at California State University, Sacramento earning her Bachelor's degree in Child Development, and her Master's degree in Early Childhood Education. Elizabeth decided to continue her education and is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in Curriculum and Instruction at Argosy University.
Elizabeth has worked in early childhood education settings for the past six years, working with infants, toddlers, and preschool and even school-age children. Elizabeth has presented at many conferences including the Head Start National Conference in Oxford, England. She has intensive training on the ECERS ratig scale, trained by Dr. Thelma Harms. She enjoys working with children and seeing them accomplish the little things. During the past three years, Elizabeth taught at a local norther California Community College, and enjoyed working with a diverse group of adults.
Elizabeth is a mother to a bright eight-year-old son. Together they do many things outdoors as well as play games and read together, Elizabeth is excited about being part of the First 5 team and looks forward to working with providers in the County helping them gain knowledge and strength in the early childhood education field.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Aly's first day of Kindergarten

Today was the big day! Everything went smoothly on our new morning routine thanks to practicing it all week. We needed to leave around 8:10 but our plan was so smooth we were ready 15 minutes early!

Here is Aly's lunch for her 1st day of school. She requested a bologna sandwich so I used fondant cutter to make her sandwich into fun shapes. She also had Pirate's Booty--otherwise known as organic cheese puffs, freeze dried strawberries, a cliff kids fruit twist, mini champagne grapes, and a fruit bar. I know a lot of fruit but that is what she wanted. I also put a surprise special note in her lunch that said, "Mommy loves you! I hope you are having a good day!" I attached a Hershey's Kiss to it.

Aly modeled for me on the stairs in her new outfit. She was very proud of how she looked in it and told everyone all about it. KK was feeling like she wanted to have a picture taken too so I took one of her as well.

Our first stop was to Aly's classroom. On the door was a note that we needed to go down to the big playground and wait in line until the teacher came and got them. I was a bit sad about this because I assumed that meant we couldn't walk them to class or see there classroom. Check out KK standing next to Aly in front of her classroom. She seriously thinks she is going to Kindergarten too!

Check out Aly's new frog Littlest Pet Shop backpack. She is so thrilled to have it! BTW because Aly was wearing a backpack KK ran and got a backpack to wear too! Check out KK, Aly, and Nathan on the playground. I started to take a picture of Aly and Nathan and KK jumped in! She really wants to go to school! Good thing preschool starts for her next week!
The first picture shows Aly's class and her teacher getting ready to go to the classroom. Thankfully the teacher was kind enough to let us go into the classroom with our kids. She said we could stay until 9:30 but I left at 9:08 as I knew Aly was fine and I wanted to give the teacher some space. The second picture shows Aly already making a new friend. She was also lucky enough to sit across from her friend Nathan.
While Aly was at school I worked really hard making a surprise for her. I spent the entire time making her a frog dress! I thought it would be a nice surprise for her.
When I picked her up she was a bit grouchy but only because of the weight of her backpack and the heat. It was really hot! In fact she told me it was so hot today that she didn't even play on the playground. She just sat in the shade with her friend Nathan.
She said she liked school and her teacher was nice. She did tell me that during story time the teacher told all of the children to be quiet and listen to the story. Aly said that her and Nathan listened to the teacher and didn't talk but many of the other boys and girls did. I told her I was proud of her for listening to the teacher and following the rules!
Do you know what Aly was begging me to do? She said she wanted to take the bus home from school tomorrow! I told her I didn't think Mom was ready for that yet, maybe next week, I need some time to let go.........................
BTW the whole way home poor KK was crying that she wanted to go back and go to kindergarten. She was very sad, I felt so bad for her. I can't wait till next week so that she will understand that she is starting preschool.