Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Last day of Slice of Life...but now I am in the routine, I will keep with blogging. Maybe not every day, but I will keep my blog up-to-date. Today I had the chance to visit a second grade writer's workshop. The teacher had told my partner and me about things that were going on in her room and we just had to see for ourselves. So, we took a trip to visit that room. It was so much fun being in a second grade again and watching kids love to write. We got to conference with writing partners and watch how they helped each other with their pieces. One little girl showed me a book she had written. On the front was the title and by_____. She had illustrations, too, of course. So I asked her who the illustrator was. She immediately said, "ME!" So we looked through books her teacher had as mentor text and found the front of many with either, illustrated by or pictures by. She decided she wanted to add illustrated by to the front of her book. The picture I have attached to my blog today is a bulletin board outside their classroom. It not only has pictures of kids being writers, but also has exactly what they are doing AND the standards that are addressed. What a perfect way to spend a spring day!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


My Slice of Life today has just got to be about my son and daughter-in-law. They are going through so much right now. First of all, they are expecting their first child together...a little boy due in August. We are all so happy about that, especially Kiann, who will be an older brother. He wanted a brother! They just sold their house a few weeks ago and were ready to purchase a lot to begin building their dream house. They had been waiting on the bank to give them the okay. They waited and waited and waited. Then all they needed was the former owners' signature. Those owners had divorced and moved away. The hunt began to find them. People were calling. People tried to find them. No luck. Then they found out they were on the run. So, the purchase of that lot which Todd and Beth had their heart set on, could not be bought.

Now they are looking again for another house. They have a couple that are not quite what they want plus they are much more than they want to pay. They want a house to bring that little boy home to when the time comes. Being sort of "homeless", expecting a baby, and stressed is not the best way to be. We are all praying for a miracle. They have worked so hard for this time in their lives. Hopefully, they will find the perfect house with the perfect price. We will put our faith in the One who holds the future!

Monday, March 29, 2010


Only three more days of school and then SPRING BREAK!! Then on Saturday we pick up the grand kids and head for Indy and the airport. After flying to Dallas and then on to Phoenix. We had everything planned for here at home, at least we thought we did. The neighbor was going to feed the cats and Sarah was going to take care of Dave.

That is until we got to thinking about Dave. He is a five-month old puppy....a LARGE five-month old puppy. This is Easter weekend and Sarah had lots of action going on that weekend. We decided not to make her go through the puppy stage especially when Dave had never even been to her home. We looked into lodging and pet care places. It had to be the best of the best for our Dave. The problem was...everything was full. Then DD had a great idea. He called a friend of his who is a young 20 year old working and going to school. He asked her if she was interested in staying here and taking care of Dave AND the cats. Her answer? "SURE, I'd love to!" My sidebar comment was..."She hasn't met Dave yet!"

She came over tonight to meet Dave and the cats. She still is willing to take on the challenge and stay for five days with the wild guy. We are so excited about our trip. We get to spend time with Emma and Adrian and see their dad in Phoenix.

We will be staying in a resort where Andy, our son, works as a chef. It is practically on the campus of Arizona State University. I remembered that is where Frank Serafini is a professor, so I wrote to him. I wanted to know if he could give us some tips for places to go. He wrote back this morning with several good ideas. We are so excited and can't wait to get in that sunshine!!!

Sunday, March 28, 2010



1. Wipe off Dave after coming in from doing his "duty"

2. Read a professional book on the couch

3. Wipe off Dave after coming in from doing his "duty"

4. Clean the bedroom, including dusting the


5. Wipe off Dave after coming in from doing his


6. Read the Sunday paper

7. Wipe Dave off again

8. Take Dave for a walk

9. Watch the NCAA games

10. Wipe Dave off including muddy paws


Saturday, March 27, 2010

Barbie's Birthday

We had a great party tonight in Fort Wayne for our friend and co-worker, Barb...alias Barbie. Everyone was to dress like Barbie or in 60's attire. The party was a SURPRISE for Barb. Her son from our west was here to join his twin. All her friends from work, church and family joined her. She was really a great sport about the whole thing. They even had ordered a "Barbie" outfit for her to wear. She and Kerry and also their boys were in full Barbie-wear.
All the coaches I worked with last year were invited. We sat at a table at the back and had the best time. It isn't often that we get to spend time together just talking. That is what we did tonight. We talked and laughed and ate and just had a great time. What a wonderful evening. It is great to have such terrific, fun friends and then to also be able to work with them is a real treat!

Friday, March 26, 2010


Okay, my Slice of Life today has to be the great news I got this morning. Todd and Beth found out they are having a BOY!!! I really had thought it was going to be a girl...not sure why, just did. That's okay, I just want a grandbaby! I am so excited for them. They have waited so long and been through so much. What a lucky little boy! These next four months will seem like forever, but really will fly by. My love and prayers are with this new family!!! LOVE THEM ALL!!!!

Thursday, March 25, 2010


At the in-service tonight, we started off the section Memoir unit of study with a poem by George Ella Lyon called: "Where I'm From". We then had all of the participants write their own poem, using hers as a mentor text, and then share them. This is a way they could start off their Units of Study in their classrooms. Here is mine:

I am from cornfields, from Coca-Cola and graham crackers. I am from country roads. Homemade, plaid skirts; the sound of trains in the distance. I am from the peony bushes in Grandma's backyard growing tall in the Spring but cut down soon after they bloom. I'm from popcorn on Sunday night and "You've got to hold your mouth right", from Ida Mae and Jim. I'm from sharing my Lima beans with the dog under the table and playing badminton in the front yard. From "finish all your dinner before you leave the table" and "you have to tell your sister you're sorry". I'm from spending all day Sunday in church and Violet teaching us about Winky Bear in Jr. Church. I'm from Irish roots, From potato soup and red velvet cake. From the time Joanie spilled the "grunt" water when she spent the summer with Grandma. The hot pot pies Dale and I ate for lunch at Grandma's house.

I'm from all the family pictures spilling out of boxes under my bed waiting to be mounted into albums representing my family tree.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


In the midst of all our cuts, surplussing and many changes we still must carry on with what we do for kids. Today I spent the morning going over the PD that my friend and I will be delivering to the 4th and 5th grade teachers in our district. Every quarter we go over the next quarter's writing units of study. We have been doing this for several years so now we are really bumping up what we are sharing. It is not just handing out the units with lessons, but more having the teachers brain storm and work together to make the units more rigorous for their students.

Tomorrow's session will be for Quarter 4. We are focusing on three units of study in our two hours with them. We will start out with Independent Writing. I like to give a basic unit so those kiddos who have not been bathed in workshop will have the support they need. Then we go deeper with the study. I am not sure where the second part of our session will go with this. It all depends on where the teachers take it.

The next unit of study is one of my favorites. It is the memoir session. Katie Ray says memoir can be a series of small moments. That is where we are going with the basic group. Then we are going to go deeper using Katherine Bomer's book on memoirs. Our last unit of study is called: The Writerly Life. That is all about reflections. We are going to have the teachers reflect over their year as well as show them how they can help their students to reflect.

That's about it. If you have any suggestions or ideas for us, let us know. We would love to share!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Last night the school board made a decision. It was to approve $15 million in budget cuts. It was not a pretty sight to watch. This included the closing of one high school and one elementary school. They are also eliminating 91 teaching positions, ending the summer school program and cutting 9 administrative positions and reducing central office expenses by more than $3 million.

How does this affect me? I am not sure yet. We have a meeting on Thursday morning and I am sure I will know more then. But today I had the chance to go to the elementary building being closed. Not exactly the best time frame. We were collaborating with the building coach and the principal. We were reluctant to ask about how everyone was today. However, the coach was very up beat and said the staff was handing this well. This school is one that is located away from the urban life, almost in a field with major roads running on both sides of it. The school is like none of the other buildings in that it is more of a country school than big city district. It is so sad to see it go. Even if we all know this is best for the district, it is sad to see it go. Fortunately, I get to work there with their teachers a couple more times this year. I know the last time I am there it is going to be with a heavy heart leaving. My heart goes out to these teachers, students and everyone who has been touched by this school.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Con't from 3/21:
Yesterday was prep day for my procedure of the colonoscopy. Actually, what I was preparing for was what they call in slang terms: Flexible Sieg. The prep for this procedure is not as rigid as the full blown colonoscopy. Still, it was not comfortable or fun. I finished that at midnight.

This morning I started with the no eating or drinking segment. There were a couple other things that I had to go through, but I don't want to get down and dirty with that. The hardest part, honestly, was the not being able to eat or drink this morning. We left for the hospital at 9:20 since we live close.

For the procedure a driver is required to stay for the entire time and then obviously drive you home. The Big D volunteered to take off work and do that. He is a great support throughout the time spent going through this procedure. We arrived at the hospital and checked in. A volunteer took us up to the right area. He was wonderful at making us feel comfortable and at ease. In no time at all, I was in bed with a blue wrap that had spots for them to hook up heaters to my gown.

After filling out paperwork from the bed, gettng an IV hooked up and an explanation of what would happen, I was ready to be wheeled into the room for the procedure. I think this was the fastest I was "out" in all the times I have gone through this. The next time I was alert, I was back in the room waking up.

A quick trip through the McDonald's drive-through and I was home on the couch. The Big D left for work and I snuggled with a couple blankets to sleep the day away. I woke up at 5:00 after not even moving. Since I had not really eaten for two days we treated ourselves to a pizza from Pizza Hut.

The doctor told The Big D that things looked great and I would be back for a full-blown colonoscopy next February. I have been doing these for about 10 years. I really believe it is because of them that I have never gotten colon cancer. I have had some pre-cancer polyps and my doctor has been diligent in being on top of the issue. So, if you have not had a colonoscopy yet, I recommend you check with your family doctor and check it out!

Sunday, March 21, 2010


My Slice of Life today has to be about what I am focusing on most today. Actually, it is not focusing on today, but what tomorrow will bring. I am taking the day off from school. Sounds like a pleasant thought, right? Not really. I just finished taking my medicine to be sure I was ready for my visit to our local hospital. Nothing serious. Well, medically serious anyway. It is time for my dreaded colonoscopy. The procedure is not bad at all. In fact, I sort of enjoy it. The doctor comes in the room and asks how I am feeling. Then the nurse begins to let the liquid flow into my veins from the previous set intravenous tube. I really like the warm feeling that soon takes over. Once I really tried to stay awake and watch the little screen that showed what was happening. That didn't work. I don't do that any more. I just close my eyes and go into a blissful sleep. When I wake up I usually ask all kinds of questions. The only problem with that is, I don't remember that I asked them and I don't remember the answer the doctor gave me. Therefore, I ask them over and over and over and over until the doctor tells me to quit! Well, I don't know what he gets so upset for, he is the one who gave me the medicine to cause me to forget!

Tomorrow at 10:30 I will be peacefully asleep. Right now though...well, we won't talk about that!!! Bet you can't wait to see what my blog will be tomorrow, can you?

Saturday, March 20, 2010


At 1:35 p.m. it was officially Spring...or close to that time anyway. With only two weeks to go until we go on Spring Break, it got me thinking about what all we had to do to get ready for it. We are again this year taking two of our grandchildren on a plane to Arizona to visit their dad, Andy. Last year we had such a good time with them that we promised we would do it again this year. Andy is going to school in Scottsdale to become a chef. He doesn't get back to Indiana enough, so we decided to go out there and see him. He already has our room ready for us at a hotel/resort where he is working as a "cook" getting ready to become a chef. It is near the University of Arizona so we are excited about being close to the school and everything that means.

To get ready for the trip we always buy and then fill a backpack for each of the kids. We purchased them last for Adrian and read for Emma. Adrian is in kindergarten and Emma is in second grade. We also bought a few small toys, some treats, an Easter bunny stuffed toy. Today we went to Barnes and Noble and found some books that were at their reading level and some math workbooks, too. We will fly out of Indy and make one stop in Dallas on the way out.

Getting ready to spend time with the kids and Andy along with just the excitement of being in Arizona again is helping me to get through the next two weeks. I am SO ready for SPRING!!!

Friday, March 19, 2010


All the puppy books I have read say that at 5 months your puppy is equal to ten years old. He will then start to become a little different. Instead of being the obedient dog he has been, he will start to become more independent. Since Dave just turned five months old today, we haven't seen this behavior. Last night we did his Puppy Class homework. Yes, he has homework. He practiced heeling, sitting when we stopped walking, down and turning on heel. He did so well that we decided to try him on stay, then come and then go into heel position. He was almost perfect. I think we have the star of the class here. Of course, that doesn't mean he will do it in Puppy Class with all those other cute puppies to distract him. Hey, I sound like the parent who says: "But they could do it at home!" YIKES!

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Cuts are happening all over the state. The governor has asked school districts to find ways to save money. He has even handed out suggestions. The district I work in has to make $15 million this year. Rumors are flying. Schools may be closed. Pink slips will be handed out to more teachers than I want to think. Teachers who are new to the district and some new to teaching, but excellent teachers.

Our school board and superintendent have made an effort to hold meetings where those affected by the possible closings could come and vent, ask questions, or give suggestions. Two of the meetings were held in schools that are considered being cut. The last meeting was held where the board always meets for their usual meetings. Tonight was that last meeting. All day there were people out front with signs marching. The meeting was emotional, enlightening and informative. I was able to watch it on Live Streaming, the first time for this to happen. I sat in front of my computer and watched the whole thing. What a great way to be involved in what is happening in our district. I was so impressed by how the board and superintendent handled the meeting. I was so impressed with the people who spoke. They gave those suggestions. They asked those questions. And they listened...along with the board. No matter what happens in the mess that we are going through, I am so thankful to have been a part of this school district for the past five years.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Does It Affect You?

The way things are changing with schools and districts all over Indiana is amazing. Tonight our union had the meeting to show the membership the master contract tentative agreement. Everyone pushed into Anthis Career Center and found a seat or standing room only. At 4:30 the contract was discussed. I could go over each and every part of it, but that is not what I want to blog about. The thing that stood out for me was a slide that was put up first. It said: "It is only fair if it doesn't affect you." How true that is. I had never thought of it in that way before. Should the cut the "steps/increment which would affect the younger teachers? Should they cut the insurance or make us pay more of it out of pocket which would affect everyone? That was the discussion. It all goes back to: "It is only fair if it doesn't affect you." Something to stop and think about!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Parents are always anxious and nervous when their children start school. Being a primary teacher, I have experienced this over the years. As we prepared Dave for his first evening of school, we felt the same way. We had treats packed since he could not eat supper until after class. We didn't want any accidents. We had poop-bags in case there was an accident anyway. We had his leash...two sizes depending on what kind of exercises he had to do tonight.

Just like parents getting their children ready for the first school experience, we had trained Dave to heel, sit and down. We thought he did very well for a five month old puppy. Then we took him to class. He was so excited to see so many puppy friends of all sizes. Daddy took him through the class tonight. They did many practice rounds and met a few of the new puppy friends. Then Della, the instructor came into the ring. She is the same instructor that Murphy had for puppy class. We felt Dave did the heel, sits, and downs very well. He didn't have much practice with about turns, so that is his homework for next week. Yes, homework. We are to work him every night during commercials. So, my baby is now in school and we are very proud of him!

Monday, March 15, 2010


It was a literacy sort of day. Spent the morning with the All Write!!! gang at East Noble for a coaches' meeting. As usual, learned lots, saw old friends and did our book study on The Book Whisperer. Then it was off to lunch at Si Senor, a favorite place to eat. Still talking literacy and school.

We went back to East Noble for work on our presentation for summer institute in Shipshewana in June. Julia and I are presenting on "must-have" professional books. We are excited about the books we will be discussing.

At 4:00, it was back to Si Senor for our Book Club. Amy joined us and we ordered and began talking about our book for this month: Outliers. We each told about our favorite chapter and why we liked that one...or why it stood out for us. If you have not read that one yet, it is another MUST READ!!

Perfect way to spend the day...friends, food and books!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Book Whisperer

I have been in a book study all year with a group from the All Write!!! coaches. The book group I chose to be in was reading The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller. I chose that book group because I had the book but never seemed to finish it. I thought this would make me read it. It wasn't that the book was boring or not appropriate for me. I was just that something else always seemed to come along. Tomorrow we were to have our last chapters read, so I needed to get busy. That is what I did this afternoon, read!

For any teacher who has not read it, I would say it is a MUST read! Donalyn is a 6th grade teacher who says she turns every student into a reader. The book takes you through how she does that. I knew of Richard Alllington's findings from thirty years ago where he says that students weren't spending enough time actually reading during reading instruction, and they still aren't. Miller finds the way to turn her students into not only readers but passionate readers. This is one book that I know I will read over and over and recommend to others.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


This was a Mommy-Dave Day. Dad had to go to meetings all morning, so Dave and Mommy spent the morning together. Again, he had some interesting first-time experiences. Since it was raining today, I decided to use the treadmill for my two mile walk. Dave has seen me on the treadmill and elliptical, but today was a little different for some reason. He was much more interested in what I was doing. I decided it might be interesting to have him get some exercise, too. No, I did not put him on a moving treadmill!

Instead, I turned the machine off and let him just sit on it. He wasn't sure he even liked that. Then when he got off, I started it up again and walked at my usual pace. When he got too inquisitive, I turned it off and let him get on and sit or stand. Today was a "no-walk" day for him, but he did try to figure out what in the world I was doing....walking but getting nowhere!!!

The other experience was a ride in the car. He did come home in the Blazer when he was a tiny puppy and go to the vet on Mom's lap to see the vet, but this was a trip just to go to WalMart. He wasn't sure he really liked this experience. However, he has to travel to Ft. Wayne on Tuesday to Puppy Class, so he needed some time in the car.

The afternoon brought time in the cage to take a nap and relax from his busy morning. That is what the picture is about today...Dave in his cage.

Friday, March 12, 2010


10. Wear scarves like Murphy used to do.
9. Eat paper...any paper.
8. Chase the cats.
7. Play with Izzy dog. (neighbor)
6. Eat "Chewies".
5. Feel the hair dryer blow on his face.
4. Get his teeth brushed.
3. Tease the cats.
2. Play ball.
1. Go for long two mile walks!!!!!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Wrestling Match

We got the message this afternoon that our grandson was again wrestling in the finals of the middle school matches. Having a full evening planned, we had to make some hasty decisions. Like all grandparents, we made the decision thinking of the kids, not our comfort. I rushed home from the hair cut. The Big D cancelled his appointments and walked Dave, played with him and gave him some quality time. Then it was time to take off, run by McD's and head south to the meet.

We missed the first round, but got there in time to watch several other matches. We sat in the middle of Columbia City's Indian Village group. They were loud, proud and excited. Their team was winning by a large number! It was fun to watch their boys compete. Finally, it was time for weight 130 and Ty! He was trying for 5th place. He was in the far ring. He was ready to go. We watched and yelled and held our breath. Was it going to go into overtime? No, he ended up losing 7 to 10, but it was a great match. For his first time to be in this sport, we felt he did a good job! Congratulations, Ty on doing your personal best this year!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Whenever we can, my best friend for many years and I try to get together to catch up with what has been happening in out lives. She is retired now and I am working in another district so it isn't as easy as it sounds. She is a great Dave fan and loves to catch up with him, too.

Tonight she came to my house and we played with Dave and walked him. He loved all the attention. Then we let him sleep and we went out to eat at a neighborhood restaurant. We had so much to talk about! It was great! Wonderful times with friends!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Today was one of those days where you feel like you are on the road more than anywhere else. Sounds like fun, but really it is tiring! I visited three schools with amazing coaches. I love having discussions, conversations and plain ol' problem solving sessions with them. I went from the south side of town, to the northwest side and ended on the northeast side. Trying to fit it all in within a time schedule is the hard part. I was looking forward to a quiet night at home just watching Idol. NOT!!!

On the way home I called The Big D and he started off with, "Did you get my message?" Since I had not been near my computer since 9:30 that morning, I did not see the message. Well, it seems that our oldest grandson was now going to be in the tournament wrestling match on the other side of the county tonight after all. I rushed home, fed the cats, gave Dave a short walk and headed back to the "big" city. We grabbed fast food (there goes my diet) on the way and made it to the gym in time to watch three sections of mats being used. We spotted our grandson in the stands, but he couldn't see us in the crowd. We waited and watched and tried to figure out when he would compete. Finally, we were rewarded with him entering the ring. Unfortunately, he got pinned. We watched a couple more rounds and then left for our drive back home, stopping to get Dave some Kong filler.

Just enough time to do my blog, check the email and watch Idol. Hope tomorrow is an easier day!

Monday, March 8, 2010


Today I am going to brag about a school I visited this afternoon. I have been working with this group off and on for five years. I have grown to love them and feel like part of their school family. They are a hard working bunch who are always thinking about what is best for their kids!

They have taken on the challenge to make learning more personal for their students. They are doing all sorts of things in the classrooms. It doesn't look alike, but it all looks like things that will make learning fun and exciting. I want to tell you about just a couple things I saw today.

First, there was a group of first graders who just made a chart for their room about Quality Friends. This is what the chart said: Quality Friends--treating others the way you want to be treated;-is nice; -does not call you names; -is kind when you are hurt; -keeps your secrets. One class had a Class Mission Statement. It went like this: We will be a kid of good character, a good teammate and do our best to be a great learner. Another room had this chart: A STAR student: Is a good listener, treats others with kindness, does neat and careful work, and tries their hardest!

There were charts for showing the progress they were making in: math, words they could read, school attendance and weekly behavior. How can these children not get better when they have set their own goals and know what they need to do to reach them. I can't wait to see their progress!

Sunday, March 7, 2010


What a beautiful, sunny Sunday in northern Indiana. Sure would love it to just stay this way until summer really gets here. However, living as long as I have, I know that is not going to happen. Still, I am going to enjoy it as long as I can.

Three things today made it even more special. First, there was long walks with Dave in warm weather. Since he was born in late October, he really hasn't experienced anything except snow. Mud is not something he knows much about, but he is sure willing to find out! He loves to walk right through mud puddles and muddy fields. We have a towel and running water close by when he comes home from his walks.

Next, we got to see Todd and Beth and little ???? today. They had to stop by to pick up something they had stored in our basement after their move. I think they are already a little stressed from the move in with her mom. But they are so thankful she is willing to take them and their two dogs. It is so nice to see signs of little ????.

Last of all, I got to spend time just reading for the pleasure of reading. Not something for making me a better coach, but just reading. Our book club is next week and I suggested the book Outliers. We are all enjoying it, but I have to get it read! I read it once, but need to review it and a reread of a good book is always enjoyable.

Hopefully, we will have more weekends like this. But this weekend was wonderful and believe me, I appreciate it!!!

Saturday, March 6, 2010


With a new puppy, it is always fun to watch him experience new things. Today it was a bubble bath! I had not been feeling the best today, but we still did all our normal and necessary things. We walked Dave twice, which meant two miles each time. We also did a lot of errands and even did some shopping at Jefferson Point.

Tonight after we had gone to one of our favorite restaurants: Italian Grille, we came home for a quiet evening. Since I had been chilling all day even though it was a warm sunny day, I decided to take a hot bath, a bubble bath, and relax.

Dave thought this was very interesting. He watched as I relaxed into the water and bubbles. Then he put his paws on the side of the tub and leaned in as far as he could. He stuck his nose in the water. He liked that, so he then stuck a paw in the water...even better. Next he got a taste of the bubbles. Hey, bubble baths are fun!!!

Friday, March 5, 2010


How in the world do puppies have so much energy? This morning Dave's favorite past time was to ram everywhere he went. I placed him on the bed while I made it and he ran from one end to the other. For a 50 pound dog, that was far! When he got down on the floor, he again ran from one end of the bedroom to the other...over and over and over. His energy was endless.

Actually, we did know why he was so energetic. He had been in his cage all day yesterday, then after a brief mile walk, a supper of dog food and a run with the cats, he was back in his cage for five hours. We had a very entertaining evening in Hicksville, OH. We started with supper with one of our favorite people, Ramona and then headed for the local theater: The Huber Theater.

Our evening consisted of the Fitzgerald family from Canada. They did the most amazing show of dancing and playing all kinds of instruments. Everything Fritz was probably our favorite of the season for Huber's series. Can't wait for next year to see what they have in store.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


This morning I was reminded of another of Dave's rituals. It all started when I was trying to hurry to get ready for work and Dave was in the mood to play. Well, Dave is ALWAYS in the mood to play! I was in the bathroom putting cream on my face. He was begging to have me play with him. I reached over and found some body cream, put it all over my hands and then rubbed his face with it. He loved it. He sat down and licked and licked his face. That gave me a little free time.

Next, I began brushing my teeth. Dave was back. He stood with his front legs on the counter and back legs on the floor. He was up to my waist in height. A very big boy! He loved the idea of water and something going into the mouth. I remembered we had doggy toothpaste for Murphy, so I dug it out along with an old toothbrush. I got the toothbrush ready, and then opened Dave's mouth and proceeded to brush. At the time, he still had many baby teeth and lots of gum area. He thought that was great.

Again this morning, I brushed my teeth...with toothpaste he does NOT like. Then I got out Dave's toothbrush, spread the mint doggy-flavor all over the brush and gave his teeth the once over. Now he has all his adult teeth and they are sparkling white. He even has great doggy-breath!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Today was quite a day at our house. It all started normal enough. Dave got up on time and went out just like he always does. He brought the paper in to Mommy, just as he always does. The one different thing was that he didn't eat his breakfast or have any water. That wasn't his choosing. He was not happy about that idea at all. When I brushed my teeth, he put both paws on the counter and tried to get at the water. I felt so sorry for him.

You see today was his day to go to the vet for surgery. We decided we did not want any more Dave's around...anywhere. I kissed him good-bye when I left for work. Daddy took him to the vet this morning.

About noon I got a text message that Dave could be picked up between 2:00 and 4:00. I was the designated driver to bring him home. As I was paying the bill at the counter, a little push came to my leg. I looked down and there he was. Not the usual happy, jumpy puppy. He looked so pathetic! I took him to the car and drove him home. When he went in the house he immediately went to the living room and got on the couch. I placed his blanket under him and that is where he has stayed. He nods off to sleep and then wakes up and looks at me like, "What have you done to me?" It is so sad.

I know we will have our old Dave back by tomorrow, probably, but right now he is a very sad looking baby!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

SLICE OF LIFE #2: Clean Up Your Room!

In the past few years I have learned to love working with kindergarten children. You never know what they are going to say and they are so free. Today I needed to pull some sample writing from students. Naturally, I chose kindergarten writing! I was in an elementary building where I have worked with a kindergarten class, so I went to visit that class to borrow their writing.

In that room was one of my favorite authors...Abigail. Her book went like this: "Yesterday my rom was a mas. My mom, sad...Kegn up yor rom. I keb up my rom. Teu you Abigail. Tuin in."

Translation: Yesterday my room was a mess. My mom said...clean up your room! I cleaned up my room. Thank you, Abigail. The end.

The illustrations were bright with lots of details. when I talked to her about her book she had a picture of someone in bed and another person alimbing a ladder beside her. She said that was her sister in bed and her older sister climbing the ladder to the bunk bed. She told me the whole story of what happened that night. Then she said, "That is my next story!"

I love kindergarten writers...always thinking!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Slice of Life #1: Golden Days!

Slice of Life: March 1st

Again this year I am going to try my hand at keeping the Slice of Life going all month. If you are interested in finding out more, just check out The Two Writing Teachers blog.

Today started off as a typical Monday. The alarm went off at 5:30 and by 5:45 I was up and moving...slowly, but moving. My usual routine is to take a shower and then feed our two yellow tabby cats, Nickey and Oliver. This is what I did this morning. As I made my way downstairs to their feeding spot, Nickey zoomed past me as Oliver yowled all the way to the basement. I guess he wasn't happy that I took time to shower before they ate.

I filled their bowls and cleaned their litter box and slowly made my way back up the stairs. Before I left that area, I closed the door to be sure our new golden retriever puppy, Dave, allowed them to finish eating.

My husband's routine is to take Dave on his short walk to do his buisness and gather the two papers before he comes in for breakfast. As I came up the stairs, Dave and his "daddy" were just coming in from their morning routine. I took the stairs a little faster as I heard them coming in the house.

"Go find Mommy," my husband told Dave. There came that cute golden with his head held high and feet prancing. In his mouth he carried one of the morning papers. He walked right up to me and held it up as if to say, "Look what I brought you!"

How can a week go bad when you begin it with that look? What an adorable baby! Golden Days, indeed!!!