Saturday, February 28, 2015

T and I needed to solidify our travel plan for RT15, and that meant a trip to Albert was in order. I brought the whole crew, and the boys went skating and we all went to Como, and the boys cooked and T and I booked.
I love those people. And, I'm not even just saying that because I know T is reading this. Those Jacobsons know us like no other, and love us just the same. But, our tiny family keeps growing so we may need to invest in a bigger wagon.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Beaver Island Happy Hour with new pint glasses and growlers in the fridge. 

Thursday, February 26, 2015

 The police arrived tonight. As I was sitting in the front room, enjoying a glass of red wine, I saw an unmarked SUV pull on the drive. A tall, dark handsome man walked up, and I could see his badge bouncing against his chest. "Oh boy." Was all I could think. I was pretty sure we were being subpoenaed for what? I had no idea.

The plain clothed officer knocked and introduced himself. He proceeded to show me a picture of our neighbor, and ask if I knew him. "Yeah, he's a nice young man, who loves to fish, and I think is a cop?" Was my immediate response. Tall and Handsome officer smiled. Apparently, they do neighborhood background? Investigation checks?on possible candidates for the suburbian police department. Tall and Handsome was just doing some research, as part of the interview process. We chatted for a bit...

I did not know this was part of the process for new officer hires, but I kinda liked the idea of our local force being vetted. I had nothing bad to say about our young neighbor. But, I do wish I had taken a pic of (or with) officer Tall and Handsome.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I returned to my Wednesday night class, facilitated by the legendary Dewey Walsh.  Dewey is notorious in the world of continuing education. He has been teaching teachers for a looonnnngggg time - like I'm pretty sure my Grandma took a Dewey class or two.  (For real - he's from Crookston.)  Dewey's propaganda usually includes a reference to the educational system of Russia vs the educational system of Norway.  He also loves to condem standardized tests and current restrictions on public education.  This class is on the Mysteries of Dyslexia.  I intend to learn a lot, earn an A and be 2 credits closer to my MA+ 20. 

Oh, the things we will do for little raise....

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I don't usually post these silly pics, but I saw this on Facebook, and almost spit out my coffee. It is so true and having never expected to have a boy, I definitely never thought these words would come out of my mouth. They have - more than once. So, mothers of boys, see if you can hear me now. Pretty sure you can relate, Pete!

Monday, February 23, 2015

I was thinking today, as I packed up my backpack, that little Lola has changed my perspective and already taught me so much. Now, most of it is super cheesy like the possibility being able to love another child as your own, and watching your best friend become a mother and understand the intense emotions, and the purest form of love that I have witnessed between the three Littles.

But, in addition, and maybe most importantly, Lola taught me to be organized. When we were awaiting her arrival, I began laying out everything for the following day. I prepped my copies and set materials out. I was ready to go, and my sub would be, too. And, guess what? It's so much easier to start the morning when you are organized. Shocker!
So, thanks to you, sweet Lola!! Keep those life lessons coming.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Today, the wood was applied to the wall! I carried the wood in from the garage (worst job ever - up and down stairs and -35*, but I did get my flights in) and then pieced them together to match widths. Andy used the nail gun to attach the planks, he was happy that he didn't have to use glue.  Which I thought was pretty silly - how could you glue the wood on the wall?  But, he is the one with the knowledge, so I didn't even ask. It turned out super sweet. 

I can't believe how much it warms up the room.  Now, to lay some shag.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Today we walked. We walked for JDRF, and finding a cure for Type 1. We walked in support of and love to Ella Jean. We walked so "type one" turns to "type none"
And while we walked, the boys fished. The fishing tournament prizes included a new Chevy truck and a 4 wheeler and an ice castle. Bennett was quite certain he would win both and give the trick to papa.
The boy won a fishing pole. And he thinks they're just fishin'.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Hoods are not allowed in school.
Say what?!?!?!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Kylee, Rachel and I headed to our state capital, and had the opportunity to visit with our some state representatives.  In the last election, democrats lost the house majority, which means that all the Reps we spoke with were Republican, and not our friends.  This made from some interesting conversations, cut short by "other meetings", and a flip of the hand motioning us toward the door.

There are some bills hitting the house floor that we really wanted to discuss - in particular House File 2.  One aspect of House File 2 would eliminate teacher tenure, and take away local control during layoffs.  A ranking system would replace senority, and teachers would be given a rank - based on test scores of students, and "some other categories" developed by local school boards.  This is a terrible idea.  My first years of teaching, I was lucky enough to be mentored by some of the best.  If a ranking sytem is in place, why would anyone want to help their colleague?  Ranking systems demoralize and discourage any form of collaboration.  In addition,  my classes are generally "loaded" with kids with special needs.  Not only because I work well with these students and families, but because I have developed a successful relationship with our special education teachers (and they get to decide where their kids go).  If I were ranked based on how these students performed on standardized tests, I would definitely be at the bottom.  These kids are smart - but the standardized tests do not address their strengths.

This bill would also weaken licensing standards, and allow districts to hire "community experts" to be hired, instead of a licensed teacher.  Essentially, a district could choose to hire (literally) anyone, and put that person into a classroom, with no over-site from the state.  You are a loving mom of three?  Sweet - that makes you a "community expert", come on in and teach kindergarten!

I'm fairly certain most of our talking points fell on deaf, elephant ears.  This bill will pass the house and likely the senate.  Fortunately, Governor Dayton will use his mighty power of veto.  And, I also learned why Nicole drinks whiskey. 
Seriously - what a bunch of knuckle heads.

I forgot to post the list of books Bennett read for his Battle of the Books, and when the mail arrived, this sweet note from Grandma and Papa reminded me to do so.  Seriously, we are just the luckiest to be surrounded in so much love.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

If you are a reader of the blog (I believe there are 3 of you.), or you know my family at all, it's quite clear the Mister and the Boy are pretty much the exact same person. Some days it is endearing, some days annoying, but every day unquestionable.

This is a topic that is often discussed, and bennett takes pride is being "just like daddy". Today, Harper got out of the tub, and her blond hair curled right up. She put on her robe and pulled me to the mirror.
"See, mama!! Benny is just like daddy, and I am just like you! Two and two - it's perfect!"

Then, we took our matching pink robes, and crawled in bed to watch a bit of TV.

Perfect. Two and two.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sunday night, Andy was called into work, because his night person went into labor.  This meant that the poor guy had to work from 11pm-7am (after working all day), and he came home eXhAuStEd.  He lumbered up the stairs, with a bag (of trail mix) in his hand, and under his eyes.  "I'm going to rest.  Just for a few hours, ok?"

He needed the rest, especially if we were going to pick up some pallets for our wall - so I encouraged the kids to play quietly.  And, they did for almost an hour.  when the energy and noise level increased, I suggested we put on our winter gear and get outside.  There was little argument.

For the first 45, we played in and around our yard, gathering ice and making snow-angels.  Then, we decided to hit up Musky Hill.  We walked to the hill, and had it all to ourselves.  The little bit of snow that covered the hill, had a thin icy coating, and it was speedy.  Bennett flew down the slopes, and Harper and I did, too (although our sled kept turning backwards, which elicited screams from the Gnome.)

It was cold, and fun, and when the cheeks started getting too rosy, we trudged back home.

Thankfully, Andy got some rest, and we got our wood.

Monday, February 16, 2015

What's weird about this picture? The enormous elephant dwarfing the zebra? Or the giant horned animal on the left? Maybe the dramatically painted sky? No. Nope. Guess again. You are all wrong.
It's the pants!!! The girl is wearing pants! Just pants - and no skirt - in public.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Our Sunday 10am hangout w auntie consisted of sharing weekly highlights, which obviously included the Book Battle and Vday party at Ms. Kelli's.