Fifteen Reasons I’m Looking Forward to 2015

I like lists.

I think this will be the year of the list, I believe I shall number things and see if it helps to keep me on track.

I am starting out the year (or almost the year) with a list of the 15 reasons why I am looking forward to 2015.

I think it will be a countdown list.

In no particular order:

15. Our family will officially be out of elementary school! 

I don’t know that I am really looking forward to this achievement, I am more resigned to it. Baby girl will be moving out into the 6th grade at the end of this school year.

I shall gird myself and trudge forward with the knowledge that she won’t be a teenager until 2017.

14. Another article published!

Okay, so it was accepted for publication already, but the journal issue doesn’t come out for another month or two.

This puts me one step closer to tenure!

13. Marching Band Season II!

This will be our second year of marching band, and we will know more what to expect.

Big has a new name, TrumpetGirl. She blows horn with the brass line.

I have found a new tribe too – Band Moms! They are a group of the most supportive people I have ever met!

I can’t wait to see what the next year of marching band will bring!

12. Anniversary 17!

This year the Ranger and I will have been married for 17 years!

I had to go all the way to Pennsylvania to find him, but he was worth the trip!

11. A New Addition to the Family!

Our family will be growing by two, tiny feet…we will be gaining a great niece.

Too exciting!

10. A Masterpiece Awaits!

The Ranger gave me an art set a few years ago for Christmas, and this year he gave me a new canvas.

I have been terrified to use it.

I’m pretty sure a psychologist could have a field day with my phobia of using art supplies.

In a past life, I used to paint, sketch, and photograph. I have an easel that my Bubba made me, I have hauled across the country. It hasn’t seen the light of day since Baby Girl came along. She’s going to middle school next year.

This year, I am going to get out my easel. I’m going to put a canvas on it. AND I’m going to use it!

9. Catfish Races!

When we moved to the middle of nowhere, TN, we had never heard of a catfish races. Then, we discovered the World’s Biggest Fishfry and the Catfish Races in Paris, TN.

Until you hear the man say, “Ladies and Gentlemen, Start your catfish!” you have not truly lived the small town life.

8. Car Payment Free!

Okay, so we won’t be completely car payment free, but we will have one of our two cars paid off! I’m not sure how long that will be the case, but I will take what I can get!

7. KK, the Traveling Niece!

KK came to visit last summer. We weren’t sure how that was going to work – one cousin is a band nerd and the other cousin is a jock. It worked. Now we are looking forward to a second visit this summer.

6. Zoo Memberships!

This family has this thing for zoos!

We have been to zoos in Pittsburgh; Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Knoxville, Atlanta, Nashville and Memphis.

Now that TrumpetGirl is of a certain age, we have to pay for her as an adult, and it costs less to just get a family membership if we plan to go to the zoo more than once in a year. In the past, we have had a membership to the Nashville Zoo, but this year we decided to change it up and get a membership to the Memphis Zoo.

There is much to love about this zoo, but for us the biggest perks are the panda bears, the Teton Trek, and the Northwest Passage Exhibits.

We need to start planning our next trip soon!

5. INF 101

Okay, so you may not quite understand this one, and that’s okay.

I teach this class.

I am responsible for making sure these 20 students understand the basic precepts of information literacy.

In addition to the students I reach in one-shot instruction sessions, I teach this one for-credit course.

I like to alter assignments from year to year.

I like to experiment, try out new techniques.

Sometime they work, sometimes they don’t.

Sometimes I feel sorry for my students.

Sometimes I don’t!

I can’t wait to see what happens!

4. books! Books! & More BOOKS!

What can I say, I’m a librarian!

So many books to read, so little time!

3. Religion!

This may seems like something strange to add to this list – religion – but there so many aspects of church and religion that I enjoy and am looking forward to. Our family is very religious, you can trust me on this one.

Baby is an alter server, there is very little in life that I enjoy more than seeing her excitement when she knows she will be serving at church. It is such a joy to watch her grow in her love of God and church.

My Daddy is a pastor, it is his second career. I love to hear the joy in his voice as he talks about God. His sincerity, concern and love for his family, friends and congregation are an inspiration.

The Ranger may not be a pastor, but he has a love for God that can be seen through his words and actions. I adore that in my man!

It is comforting knowing that everyday as I walk through life I know that the prayers of my husband and my parents follow me through the day.

2. Health!

I’m hopeful that our house will be healthy this coming year.

We have health issues in our home.

I’m not going to go into it.

You will just have to trust me on this.

We are thinking positive and healthy for 2015!

1. Adventure!

Adventure awaits us this year!

I have no idea what it might be, but it awaits!

Hopefully, I will get around to blogging about it!

I wonder how much will actually get blogged and how much will just be blogged in my mind.

Have a great New Year everyone!

I’m Alive and I Have Goals

So, raise your hand if you thought I had fallen off the face of the earth?

Well, I didn’t.

The earth is round, silly!

I just got caught up in life.

Life that revolves around my family, my work, and a different blog.

No, I’m not cheating on you guys!

Really!

I’m publishing another blog just for the students and faculty in my departments at work. 

It’s a work thing.

I’ve composed some really great blog posts for you all in my head.

Usually while I’m driving to and from work.

So before I go into my goals for the coming year…

…I thought I would revisit my hopes from last January

I did get to spend time with my Sissy at Disneyland. My cousin joined us. We had a ball!

And, I did manage to prove to my husband that I could live without the joys of WalMart.

Of this I am especially proud. 

It isn’t easy to be a non-WalMart shopper!

Especially when you live somewhere like the Middle-of-Nowhere, TN!

We don’t have a lot of options!

Did I manage to not go to WalMart all year? 

No.

I think I counted a total of 3 visits, but they were all for or with other people.

The Ranger asked me to get him some new tires there in June (that was my first visit all year).

My Sissy had me stop there with her while we were in California.

Oh, I DID go in once of my own volition, but that was because I had ordered something online and ship to store was free. I didn’t stop and purchase anything else while I was in the store.

I have been there once or twice since I passed my year goal, but I tend to go there as a final resort. 

I’ve learned shopping without huge lines is rather relaxing.

Now on to my goals for this next year:

1. I would really like to go to PA for a visit.

We haven’t been “Up North” in several years, and, well, we miss our friends.

This is not to say that we don’t miss our WA friends, but I’m already planning a trip out there for Miss K’s graduation.

2. I would really like to have a visit with my Bubba…in person.

I miss him too.

Last year was a visit with Sissy, this year a visit with Bubba.

He’s planning to run at Disney World in Jan. 2015, so I think that I will make at least planning a visit with him a goal.

3. I would really like to have a healthy year, for me and my family.

It’s been a trying time health-wise for my family the last several years. I’m not going to go into details. They aren’t mine to share. Suffice it to say, we’ve earned some respite.

4. I would like to be an inspiration to my students, many of whom come from locations and backgrounds similar to me. I want them to see that your future is wide open and can be whatever you would like it to be! I would also like to not get giggle fits when they call me professor.

5. I would love, really LOVE to have my guest room filled with friends and family at least every other month.

It should be an interesting year!

I will let you know what happens!

In the meantime, I leave you with this…

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Because, no matter what the year brings, it will bring these two and fun!

What 41 Looks Like

I had no problem with turning 40 last year.
I embraced it.
I relished it.
Face it, I totally rocked 40!

Forty-one, however, has given me pause.

A few weeks ago I started to think about what 41 looks like.

It is different for everyone, but for me this is what 41 looks like.

Becky cropped

Forty-one is slightly overweight, but resigned to the fact that my 23 inch waist from high school is completely out of reach.

Forty-one has embraced being healthy over being a certain size.

Forty-one is stiff joints, and *gasp* bifocals!

Forty-one is being the embarrassing mom to a teenager instead of the cool mom of a pre-teen.

Forty-one is laugh lines, the occasional silver (I refuse gray) hair.

Forty-one is asking my husband, “Does this make me look old?” instead of “Does this make me look fat?”

(Ranger, if you are reading this, the only correct answer to this is “NO!”)

Forty-one is realizing that the music of my youth is now known as “the Greatest Hits of the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s!”

Forty-one is jamming to “Smells Like Teen Spirit” in the student union and when the students look at me with wonder that I know this song, I look at them and say, “Dude, this is my generation! I lived through Grunge and mosh pits!” I think I am being invited to speak to their history classes.

Forty-one is accepting that while I enjoy Zumba, it is not something I should be seen doing in public.

(Forty-one is KNOWING I would end up in traction even trying to “twerk.”)

Forty-one sounds like, “Because I’m the Mom and when you are the mom then you will know too!”

Forty-one is recognizing that my mom isn’t hiding in my bathroom mirror and that it is really my own reflection.

Forty-one is going to the library everyday not to hang out or to study, but to work.

Forty-one is acknowledging the craft projects started 15 years ago will never get completed. Time to move on.

Forty-one is trying not to relive my youth through my children. I can do this, I know it!

Forty-one is accepting that I have said teenager (see above) who will be starting high school, then college, then getting married, then having babies, then will be 41 herself!

Warrior Meg

This is where my age problem lies.

Dude! I’ve had a breakthrough!

I don’t have a problem with me turning 41, I a problem with Big turning 13.

So, really, if 40 is the new 30, then 41 is the new 31 right?

In that case, 41…
BRING IT ON!

I’ve got this!

It’s a Disneyland After All!

image

So my Sissy and I did it. We went to Disneyland without our husbands or our children.

We only feel a leetle guilty.

We had a TON of fun!

We brought the kiddos home T-shirts.

Our cousin Kathy came too! She’s pretty darn cool!

We heard Sir Paul McCartney and Justin Timberlake perform. We saw Jay Leno filming live. We rode Radio Springs Racers in Carsland, Hollywood Tower of Terror, and Screaming.

Disney just won’t be the same without us.

Ten Truths

Ten Truths I know right this minute:

1. It’s been far too long since I got my blog on.

2. Teaching two classes while researching and working the reference desk while juggling kids, hubby, etc. was not my best idea.

3. I’m so excited to be going to ALA in Chicago this summer!

4. I’m going to “Mickey’s House” this fall … without my husband or my kids!!! 

5. I’m on the fence about letting Big Baby-sit for more than a few hours at a time. I have no doubt she can do it; I’m more on the fence whether or not Baby will allow Big to be “in charge.” Denny Crane.

6. I don’t miss my gallbladder.

7. My cat needs to diet. I’m not saying she’s fat; I’m saying she could make a great paperweight, in a high wind.

8. I would go through the whole gallbladder fiasco again if I could have an afternoon of lunch and shopping with my Sissy, Mama, Missy, Kathy, Laurel, Denise, Marsha, Julie, etc., etc., etc.

9. I’ve got far too many papers to grade before the end of the term.

10. Did I mention the whole Disney thing? Did I mention that I feel a little guilty about it? I do. 

That’s all.

You can go away now.

I’ll try to post again soon.

I’ll even try to get a picture or two in there!

 

 

Can you hear me now?

For several years Big has been begging for a phone, and for several years we’ve said, “Ummmm, no.”

The discussion goes back and forth.

Argument 

1. All my friends have them!

Rebuttal 

1. Good, then if you need to call me you should have no trouble finding a phone!

Argument

2. How am I supposed to call you to pick me up from Pep Band?

Rebuttal

2. Turn around and say, “Hey, Mom, can we go now?”

Argument

3.  But what if I want to call Grandma or Nana or Becky? 

This is where she tries playing the guilt trip – you moved me across the country from my grandmas and my BEST FRIEND!

Rebuttal

3. Tell me when and I’ll lend you my phone.

*************************************************

There are two really huge things getting in the way of Big having her own phone, and one of them is known as the Ranger the other known as Mama (there really isn’t anything petite about me…seriously!).

Well, this was working fine for me, and then I saw it…

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It looked suspiciously like the Ranger’s old cell phone.

The one he never answered.

The one he used for playing video games.

The one he got rid of after he found out he’d be carrying two phones around, his personal phone and one for work. 

He really hates phones!

But now here was Big with this phone of her own?

“Sweetie?” I asked, “Where did you get that phone?”

“Oh,” she says, “Daddy gave it to me. He said I could have it.”

Really. 

There was no discussion over Big having a phone.

There was no sassy contract over the responsibilities of having her own phone.

There was no decision over how she was going to earn the money to pay for her phone.

It was just there.

I was SOOOOOOOOOOO not happy! (enough O’s to get my point across?)

Then she continued, “Yeah, it doesn’t work, but Dad said I could have it.”

Oh, okay then.

I was good with that.

Then I started noticing something.

Big was carrying this phone around…

And not just in the house.

She wanted to take it to school (Ummmmm, no).

She did sneak it to PRE (read CCD or Catechism).

I saw her showing it to someone.

I later asked her what she told people when it wouldn’t turn on -

“Oh, I just told them that it needed to be charged. I wasn’t lying, it does need to be charged”

No off position to the switch of genius on that child.

I’m not all that worried about her running up a huge phone bill though…

Did I mention that Big really hates talking on the phone?

She always has.

You see, for Big it’s all about being able to show her friends that she’s cool, that she has a phone too, that she fits in. Apparently the rule book only says you have to own a phone, not that it has to work.

The thing is we are going to have to seriously consider getting Big a phone of her own soon. She’s starting to go on school and church trips without us, and she wants to babysit her sister this summer and we don’t own a home phone.

Decisions are going to have to be made and rules outlined.

Until then I’m going to pick my battles and let her pack around the Ranger’s old phone.