Saturday, February 26, 2022

At a loss

I am heartsick over Ukraine and broken hearted by comments and opinions about gas pipelines, high food prices, and whomever/whatever the perceived blame for this war. 

This is real loss of innocent lives, all in the name of power. Blaming or praising world leaders for being weak or powerful? PLEASE!

I believe in the power of prayer. 


Monday, February 21, 2022

The president does WHAT?!

 Today it is going to be almost 70 degrees in St. Louis. On this Presidents' Day holiday, school children and many workers are going to be out and about. Our grands and greats are going to Elephant Rocks for a day of hiking and climbing on huge granite boulders.

When I was still teaching I used to do an activity for this particular holiday. I felt it was important to stress a sense of community inside the classroom as well as out. We did canned food drives, and the children walked with their donations to the local church food bank. I enocuraged kindness and caring. 

We did a craft activity. The children snipped with scissors all along the edges of their paper. Then they made a red, white, and blue  pattern using one inch squares around the border of their paper. Next I wrote, If I were the President, I would... (do to help others? Make a rule? etc) and I wrote their words and great ieads:

Give everyone food to eat and any toy they want.
Make everyone clean their room.
Play nicely with their brother/sister.
Help your grandma.

Next I wrote, What does the president do? What is the President's job?

Oh my goodness did I get some hysterical responses when Bill Clinton was in office.

He goes to hotels.
He flies airplanes.
He tells everyone he is the boss.
He talks on the phone to girls. 

The kids' answers were so funny I sent them to the White House. Don't know if President Clinton ever took a look, but somebody sure got a laugh. Twentyto thirty preschoolers repeating what they had heard at home and on TV. They sent us a packet of teaching materials, booklets and posters in return. 

I displayed the students' posters in the hall for all to see. Parents and staff loved it. 

Monday, February 14, 2022

Happy Valentine's Day/ anniversary

 Happy Anniversary and Valentine's Day to my funny honey. Where have the years gone? 

I wrote a parody song for a Valentine's Day radio contest. Winners were to be announced on the radio a week before Valentine's Day. Driving to work, I heard my name, among others, called as winners of a complete wedding package. I screamed! Then I called Bill, "We are getting married! Come home early so we can go to the county courthouse for our marriage licence."

He told me, "Calm down. Our wedding is planned for April, and we have plenty of time."

"Oh no we don't! I told him all about my contest win and our upcoming nurtials ON VALENTINE'S Day...on air. I did not tell him then it would be a mass wedding. We would be one of the 98 couples. sponsored by Y-98.

We won tuxedo, wedding bands, flowers, reception, photos. Bill's daughter videotaped the wedding ceremony/dance. Ninety-eight couples took to the floor at the Grand Ballroom of Union Station, and said our I Dos.

Later when viewing the video, four-year-old Ashley said, "WOW! I didn't know there was an earthquake at your wedding." There wasn't. Robin had a shaky hand while filming from the balcony. But I have been rocking with my big old guy for many years.

We have been laughing together for 33 years. We dated for five years, have been married for 28. I have never been happier. We are soul mates. I am blessed. 

We have left our footprints on Florida and Caribbean beaches, ball rooms, dance floors, campgrounds, cruise ships. We have lived and loved. Each day we appreciate one another more. 

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Hey, why won't my bike work?

 Last week St. Louis had a doozy of a winter storm. First we received freezing rain, and then almost a foot of snow in our neighborhood. Yesterday the temperature zoomed to 64 degrees here, and the snow began to melt. 

The driveway was cleared, so Alex and Charlie were excited to be able to ride their bikes outdoors. They asked if they could ride ON THE DEEP SNOW. I nodded, and they squealed with anticipation talking nonstop and fast about how they were going to slip and slide and spin and turn circles and beat one another. So rather than dissuade them, I said, "Sure! You can put your bikes up in the snow. Have fun."

That frozen snow bank was still about a foot high. Alex carefully positioned his tricycle on the mound, giggling and telling Charlie he would race him. Charlie took the bait and positioned his bike on the deep, frozen mound. The snow crunched as they climbed on their trikes...
 and promptly sunk down into the snow. 

I laughed as hard as they did as they tried to figure out why THEY couldn't drive on snow like cars had been. They decided the mostly cleared drive way, with a few icy spots would work, and off they went.

Have you ever been convinced that your idea would work, only to discover first hand that you were wrong? The best teacher in my opinion is experience.

We took the opportunity to discuss the properties of snow and watch it melt and trickle down the sewer. They put leaves and rocks and sticks on the run-off and spent fifteen minutes exploring how, why, what, and where. Science outdoors. 

When I taught, I told parents, "I will teach your children how to think not what to think." Kids really do learn best by DOING.

Monday, February 7, 2022

Scammers going to scam!

 Be careful, folks. Hubby opened his computer and saw a screen that indicated the laptop was inoperable and had been hijacked with malware.

"Better call the Geek Squad at Best Buy." I suggested. "I'll Google their number."

After hearing a recording from Best Buy, a man with a Nigerian accent came on the line and claimed he could help us. He said, "It is terrible what they are doing to senior citizens. We have been dealing with this for weeks."

And then, he asked us to give him access to the computer so he could repair etc. The clincher, he asked for $2,500.00  When I squealed, "We cannot afford that!" he said, "Oh do not cry dear lady. Sit back and relax. I can do it for $250.00. Do you have credit cards or Amazon?" 

When I questioned him, he gave me his name and email. I paused a bit too long, so he asked for Bill. He began to get irate and said, "If you do not trust me, disconnect right now!"

And so we did. 

Took the laptop to Best Buy. The first question they asked is, "Did you Google our phone number?"

NOW WE KNOW. That's how they infiltrate.

The Geek Squad removed viruses and said there is no way to completely prevent future viruses, but to be cautious.

We did spend $200.00 for a three-year plan on all our devices. 

When we picked up the laptop, we had a message from Amazon that someone tried to spend $250.00 but they cancelled the attempted transaction.

Dirty rotten scammers. 

On a happy note, the weather is rebounding and hopefully the 55 degrees expected tomorrow will melt this foot of snow still lingering on side streets and at mailboxes.

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Preparing for the big dump

It was 63 degrees and sunny yesterday. I took the boys to the park playground. By nightfall the school closings started scrolling across the bottom of the television screen.  

 A major winter storm is heading our way here in St. Louis, Missouri. This morning, some places received snow, and others in our area (as pictured) received sleet, freezing rain...yuck! We are in a lull. It is 32 degrees outside, and will be going down to single digits. 

Everyone is in a holding pattern. Nearly all schools, many businesses, and churches are closed and probably will be for the rest of the week. About 8:00 p.m. the big dump is expected, somewhere between 7-13 inches of snow will keep most people off the roads and hunkered down.

I made pancakes with peanut butter sprinkled with bird seeds for the critters. The four squirrels who visit daily wouldn't touch it. They opted for dropped bird seeds. But a flock of black birds (gackles) swooped in and cleaned it up. The little sparrows and nut hatches have been eating their fill, but the mouthy blue jay and a bright red cardinal have been most entertaining, acting like children on the playground.  

I must go change their frozen water now. Stay safe my friends in the path of this doozy of a winter storm.