Saturday, January 31, 2009

Today, am I crazy?

We worked out this morning, did an amazing workout for our biceps and back. Then, what was I thinking? I decided it would be a good idea to go on a bike ride to Barnes and Noble to pick up a book. I can barely move! I feel like I did the first day I went snow boarding. I'm hoping I can move in the morning...

Ok, that's all.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

So, what is going on with me????

Penny asked the big question, but I don't think I have such a big answer. I feel like I haven't talked to her all week (which is true, since I haven't talked to her since Tuesday, when I had a snow day). Let me see...I didn't do anything at all on Tuesday, I just relaxed and enjoyed the day off. Wednesday came around, and it was back to work at the Daycare center. Boy were those kids on one! Four days in a row with their parents and they really didn't want to come back! Add to that the fact that we couldn't let them play outside b/c it was so cold, and it was a rough day. I taught my first center that I designed. It didn't go too well. We split the kids up into 3 groups, and the first 2 groups didn't want anything to do with my game. I had them guess the next animal in a pattern, and I had cut out all these cute animals using Kate's Cricut font. The 3rd group did a lot better. The kids were interested and engages. I guess because I had had 2 groups to perfect the technique. Then I had to get together with my Co-teaching partner before class at 4:20 that evening, so we met at a local library. We had to decide what our lessons are going to be next week. We decided on "Winter Animals" and we'll talk about:
Polar Bears on Monday
Penguins on Tuesday
Seals on Wednesday
Moose on Thursday
Groundhogs on Friday

Ok, I know those aren't necessarily just wintery animals, or polar animals, but it works. We'll put it all together. The way we split up the work, I got to plan for Wed, Thurs, and Fri. I got a start after class that night (Matt was on duty) and then worked on it some more Thursday after my Daycare rotation. My class on Thursday was canceled, thank goodness. My day at the Daycare went a little better. My center that I planned and executed was making bracelets using pipe cleaners and beads. It went AWESOME! The kids were engaged, excited, and it took the full 15 minutes for them to complete. It was so much fun.

Now, let me tell you about yesterday. was Friday. The center I had planned was using hand cut-outs to measure the children. The first two groups I had did pretty well. Once they figured out what we were doing, they were excited. The last group, well.........I was almost in tears. There were 4 kids, and not a single one of them was the least bit interested in doing anything but their own thing. I was at a loss. I didn't know what to do. If I had known that I could take them outside, that might have changed things a little bit. Finally, the head teacher told me to get their coats and take them outside. I felt awful. But afterward, she took me aside and told me it was alright. They probably would have done the same thing to her. They were just done with centers, and that happens sometimes. It made me feel a little better, but holy cow! I'm glad my first day or week at the Daycare wasn't like that day, or probably would have just given up and said "To heck with this." I know it can be better. But I really hope it doesn't get any worse than that!

After the daycare, Matt called me and said his division was going out for sushi. So I met them at the restaurant. I had a good time. I guess one of the Chiefs that is in Matt's division was on the Truman with me. I used to stand watch with him sometimes. I didn't really like him, though. It was weird. He didn't introduce himself to me, but he looked really familiar. I just thought maybe I had seen him at some other function. Turns out, he recognized me, too. It just took a little while. We talked for a little bit. *shrug* I don't know. I had a good time, even though it was with a bunch of *ahem* Navy guys. I had almost forgotten how crude, rude, racist, sexist, dumb, those guys could be. I was reminded yesterday exactly what it used to be like.

Ok, well, that's about it. Yesterday was the first day in 23 days that I ate anything that wasn't on my diet. It was a little weird, and it actually hurt my stomach a little. I started the Helm Health Challenge, yesterday, with a vengeance. I did the P90X Core Synergistics workout. That might have been the toughest workout I've ever done. Most of the moves I couldn't even do (yet). Soon, soon.

Ok, that's about it. I hope to get to hang out with Kate a little bit today. We'll see how it goes.

Talk to you guys later (Penny, give me a call!)


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Snow Day

Ok, so it is 6:14 am and I just got confirmation that ODU is closed today! How great is that? I was worried about going to the daycare, doing my thing, coming back, making lunch, getting some homework done, watching the inauguration, going back to school, getting home ridiculously late, and trying to get some laundry done and clean up the house, all in one day! Now, I can relax, get the laundry done, work on homework, watch the inauguration, and just enjoy having another day off. I know that this makes it into a 4 day weekend, but, hey, like I said yesterday, it hasn't snowed here since 2004. So we're definitely due. We're supposed to get anywhere from 1 inch to 4 inches, but if you think about it, I don't think Virginia Beach even owns a snow plow. So, clearing off roads is a little tricky...
I cut my finger last night while I was cutting some chicken. It was a pretty deep cut, which seemed to have closed nicely, but now that I'm typing, it has reopened. :(

Hey, on Facebook, an old friend tracked me (and Penny and Kate) down. Angie Miller! Her family moved into the old Berrett trailer (the old Merrill trailer) when I was in 4th grade. Angie was in 7th grade. We had such a great time back then. We rode bikes, went swimming, stayed the night, played games, camped, everything you could think of. It was sad when we moved, because we kind of grew out of touch. I got a chance to visit her in Boise my Junior year of high school. I think she had one child. Now she has 3. It is so much fun to reconnect with people after so many years.

Anyways, I'm going to enjoy my snow day. I'll take pictures if we actually get any accumulation (I'm still skeptical). And I'll probably head over to Kate's to help the boys make snow men. That's all Parker could talk about yesterday. It is weird to think that they have never seen snow before. Most of the kids around here haven't, unless they drive up to the mountains.

Talk to you all later.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Boy, what a day!

So, yesterday morning, Matt got home from duty at around 7:30 am. He went online and checked our money, like he does every morning. He noticed a strange transaction that went through at 5:55am yesterday morning. Hmmm... He didn't recognize the name of the company, so he got a little concerned. He called USAA (yes, he was able to speak to a representative at 7:30 am EST!) and he still couldn't figure out what the charge was. Maybe someone was committing fraud? Well, not to take any chances, we decided to put first a hold on the credit card, then cancel it altogether. Fortunately, about 15 minutes later, he figured it out. About a month and a half ago, Matt ordered some waterproofing membrane for our guest bathroom shower. The company finally decided to charge the credit card. Well, in their defense, they don't charge us until they get the invoice from Fed Ex, and I guess Fed Ex was a little slow in getting it to them, so it wasn't their fault exactly. And they charged us about a dollar less than they originally quoted, so that is why Matt didn't recognize the charge amount. Matt hurried to call back USAA, but they had already canceled the card. But at least they won't have to do a fraud investigation.

Crazy, huh?

Then, we thought about doing our daily workout, Yoga, but we were starving. We're quickly running out of food that we can eat, but we had some ingredients for shakes, so we had breakfast. We couldn't work out right after breakfast, so we waited until later that night to do it. I love yoga, have I ever mentioned that? I took a yoga class over the summer, and it was exciting to see my flexibility increase in a short amount of time. We went grocery shopping, which wasn't too bad. I did forget to get broccoli (we're going to have Beef and Broccoli with Miso soup sometime this week) so we need to go back sometime today for the broccoli. Other than that, we had a good day. It actually started to spit snow a little bit. Kind of weird. But even weirder was waking up this morning to the weather report that we will probably get snow tonight and tomorrow. 2-5 inches! What? We've never had that much snow since the first day I got here and there was a freak snow storm. That was in 2004, so it has been 5 years. It has snowed a little, but not enough to stick around.

Anyways, I have a bunch of homework to do, in case we actually have school tomorrow. I'm excited for tomorrow anyways. I don't remember being excited about a presidential inauguration before, but I'm excited this year. I wish I could go up to DC for it, but I have school/work, and Matt won't get off anyways. Plus, they're not really letting cars into the city, so it would be really complicated to get there and back....

Ok, off to homework. Talk to you later.


Friday, January 16, 2009

Blast from the Past

How many of you remember this one?

The Mormon Rap

Hey brothers and sisters,
Listen to me,
I'm talking to you religiously,
My Mormon Rap will make you see,
That I'm as funky as Donny and Marie.

When I go to church,
I'm in a good mood,
Cause they all treat me
Like a righteous dude.

When I watch tv,
I feel inspired,
Cause I listen to the
Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap
Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap

I'm a fine young man,
I'm living clean,
Don't smoke, don't drink,
If you know what I mean.
Don't touch Soda Pop if
It has caffiene,
You might say I'm
a good little Sunbeam.
I didn't even date,
Until I turned 16,
I don't even know
The meaning of the word obscene.
Flipp'n, fetch'n, scruddle-dee-me,
jimminy cricket, and fiddledy-dee!

Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap
Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap

Now Brigham Young,
He's my main man,
Cause He brought the
Pioneers to the promised Land.
Brother Brigham might be related to me,
I'll check it out when I do my genealogy.
He didn't want settle just anywhere,
That's why we've got a place called Temple Square
I wish I could've seen old Brigham's Face
When he said "Oh baby, this is the place!"

Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap
Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap

I met a mormon girl just yesterday,
Who had a real sweet spirit,
In her own choice way.
I said "Hey, I'm on my way to the Dairy Queen,
Would you like to join me for a bowl of Ice Cream"
She said "Sure, why Certainly,
But you're gonna have
to wait til after three,
I've gotta give a lesson and a recipe,
To my Relief Society"

I was thinking of another nice place to go,
So I took my baby to the wild road show,
Refreshments look real good to me,
Red punch, white cookies, and mint candy
Then I took her home,
Nice place she had,
That's where I met her mom and dad,
I said "How do ya do? and I'm pleased to meet ya"
And the door bell rang, was the Home Teachers
I looked at my baby and she said with a smile,
"We might be here for a little while"
I said "Come On girl, lets go and ride,
Cause we're gonna be late for the fireside!"

Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap
Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap

My bishop asked if we're going steady,
And we said, "No sir, cause we're not ready,
We've got some important things to do,
Like graduate from BYU --
And sometime later in the fall,
I'm gonna recieve my mission call!
Don't you worry, I'll be flyin'
Right back home to the land of Zion!"
Put Salt Lake City on the map,
When we all do the Mormon Rap!

Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap
Mormon, Mormon Rap,
Do the Mormon Rap

"Hey Mom, What are we having for dinner?
Green Jello Salad with Shredded Carrots?
Come on all you kids get in the Station Wagon,
We're gonna be late for cub scouts!"

~C'mon, you all know you want to sing along!! ;)

Update: One down, 15 to go

Ok, so if you couldn't figure out, I'm talking about weeks of school (there are 16 in the average semester). I think this semester is going to be good, but busy. We'll see how it goes. Matt and I are waking up insanely early to work out together, but I'm so glad we are. It is pretty much the only time we get to spend together. Matt has a new job at work; it requires a lot more time at work :( But, it is ok, I have evening classes anyway, so if he was getting home early, it would just be in time for me to leave for class. So I guess in a strange way it works out.

Let me tell you a little about my classes:

Reading to Learn Across the Curriculum-This class is every Tuesday from 4:20 to 7:00. It looks like it will be an interesting class. I'm going to learn how to do DRAs (Developmental Reading Assessment) and other such fun things. I think I'll get a lot of "tools" to put in my reading "tool box".

The Child and the Family- Now, this class I think will be my favorite. It is all about family interactions, and with such a large family, I think I will have a lot to learn. One of the things we have to do is make a "genogram" or in other words, a family tree. When I heard that, I got excited, but she finished by saying that it would start with the grandparent generation. What? Only the grandparent generation? Man, we have our family history back way more generations than that! :) I'm glad I have siblings that have already "done the work" for me.

Classroom Management/Advanced Practicum- This will be the most challenging class of the semester. It is really two classes combined into one. The good thing is, we only have to pay for one class. But there's more than enough work for two classes. Along with a 150 hour practicum, with all the paperwork, journaling, and time that goes with that, there is a lot of work for the classroom management class portion. It will be tough, but I'll make it.

Children's Literature Across the Curriculum- This is a library science class, taught by a librarian. We are going to end up reading 40 children's books by the end of the semester, and critique them all. I'm looking forward to reading all that literature. Seriously, I am.

Well, that is about it. Now, about my week at the Child Development Center, where I'm doing my practicum at the moment. Let me tell you, I have a lot to learn. They subscribe to a discipline plan known as the 101s, or 101 Positive Principles of Discipline. I recommend everyone look through them. The three major ones we use in the three-year-old room are "the choice principle," "the incompatible alternative principle," and "the timer means its time principle." For example, with the choice principle, we ask the children, "do you want to go potty now or in one minute?" or "do you want to put it away or do you want me to put it away for you?" If they refuse, we say it again, and then say "you choose or I'll choose." It works like magic. Also, the timer is almost like a god to these children. They know that when it goes off, that is the last word. It is hard sometimes to remember not to tell the children "no" but instead give them a choice. Of course, if they are doing something dangerous, you really do have to tell them "no," but you can tell them in a nice way.
Anyways, I'm getting the routine down, I know all the kids' names, and I feel a lot better about today than I did Monday. I feel more confident. Those kids love everyone, as long as you're nice. I just need to keep that in mind.

Anyway, this turned into a longer blog than I intended. Sorry about that. I'll let you know later in the semester how I really feel about the classes. I hope I love them all.

Talk to you later.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

School starts tomorrow; The vacation is over!

Ok, so I can't believe that my month off of school is over. It was so much fun while it lasted. Matt and I got to spend a lot of time together, which is always good. I know some people like it when their husband or significant other is at work, or on deployment, or just out of the house. I don't know, maybe it is because we don't have kids, but I like to have my husband home with me. It is why I married him; I like to have him around. And I don't feel the need to DO stuff when he's home. We just hang out, get stuff done around the house. Don't get me wrong, we like to do stuff, but we don't need to go out and spend money to have a good time together. In fact, all we need is our bikes, and some warmer weather, and we're good to go (it might snow this week :( ) Anyways, school starts up for me tomorrow. So my schedule is as follows:

For the first month of school-January 12 to February 13, I have the opportunity to work at the Child Development Center (on campus day-care) for one of my classes. I think I will be in the Preschool 1 room, which is 4 year olds, I think. Anyways, I'll be doing that M-F, 8am to noon. Then on Mondays, I have a seminar for that class from noon to 1pm.

Then, for the entire semester:
Tuesday: Class from 4:20-9:55 (two classes)
Wednesday: Class from 4:20-7:00
Thursday: Class from 4:20-7:00

Nice schedule, huh? So that class that I'm working at the daycare for is called "Advanced Classroom Management" and those hours are part of the advanced practicum. Last semester, I had to complete 70 hours total. This semester, I have to complete 150 hours total. But as you can see, the first 75 hours will be gone in a flash. And then I need to do the rest of the hours in a public school. I'm still waiting for my placement. Hopefully I'll have it by the time I'm done at the Child Development Center. I'm hoping to learn some techniques that I can share with Kate to help with Parker's pre-school education. I know she wants to prepare him as well as she can, and I hope I pick up some things. Originally, I was supposed to work with the Pre-Kindergarten or Kindergarten kids, but they asked for volunteers to work with the younger ones, and I raised my hand. I'm interested to see how I'm supposed to teach a lesson to them, let alone a 2 hour lesson as required by the class. Hmmm...I guess we'll have to see, won't we?

Anyways, other than having a terrible head cold and not feeling so well, not much is going on. Matt and I have committed ourselves to fitness and getting into shape. This means that we work out regularly, and have completely changed the way we look at and think about food. I've stumbled across this great online tool, if anyone is interested. It is at the website: . It is a calorie counter, and has tons of cool features. The best part is that it is free online! Isn't the internet a great tool? So, I'm keeping track of what I (we) eat and I think it will be really cool to see where my calories are coming from. I have a heart rate monitor that I wear while I'm working out, so I can see where my calories are going as well.

Ok, well, that's about it. Other than the fact that we went to Parker's THIRD birthday party yesterday. We had an awesome time. Matt took some pictures, so maybe he'll post them sometime. But there was good food (although I didn't eat any of it, except the veggies) good friends, and good fun. Watching Parker open his gifts was priceless! And his little cousins (really Ben's cousins, but they're about the same age) standing around helping him! Well, that was really fun, too. Parker wanted a "Front-loader Birthday Cake" and Donna was able to make one for him! How cool is that? He got so excited when he saw it!

Well, I should get some rest. I have a big day ahead of me tomorrow. I want to get a great start to this semester. Only 3 more to go!!


Monday, January 5, 2009

Scattergories {Tagged}

Ok, so I just read Beth's blog, and decided to play along. What the heck, right?

So, here goes:
Rules: Use the 1st letter of your name to answer each of the following. They have to be real places, names, things. Nothing made up! Try to use different answers if the person who tagged you had the same 1st initial. You CAN'T use your name for the boy/girl name question. And you can't use the same word twice. Good luck, it's harder than it seems.

What is your name: Pam
Boy name: Parker
4 letter word: Pith
Girl name: Payson
Occupation: Painter
A color: Pine Green
Something people wear: Perfume
Beverage: Pina Colada
Food: Pasta Primavera
Something found in a bathroom: Poo
A place: Pasture
Reason for being late: Period
Something people shout: Police!

And, since Beth let Chad play, I will let (make) Matt play too. Enjoy!
What is your name: Matt
Boy name: Marvin
4 letter word: Most
Girl name: Maurissa
Occupation: Military
A color: Maroon
Something people wear: Mexican Hats
Beverage: Milkshake
Food: Mango
Something found in a bathroom: Mouthwash
A place: Melton Mowbray
Reason for being late: Meningitis
Something people shout: Man! You're Hot!

Well, it is snack time. Everyone that reads this is tagged, if you want to do it, that is :)


Saturday, January 3, 2009


And here it is, proof that I actually AM a college grad! Enjoy! :)

Ted Constant Convocation Center. Would you believe that this is the first time I've been there? I walk past it every day, but I haven't been to any games or concerts there. Blasphemy, I know. What can I say? I have too much studying to do, I guess.

Walking into the stadium

Finding our seats

Waiting for my name to be called.

Walking down the steps, after receiving my cheap piece of paper, scotch-taped shut and wrapped with cheap wrapping paper ribbon.

Paisley was so good during the whole thing.

The recessional. They had already stopped the music by the time we left our seats.

Me and my friend Anais, she came to my graduation!!

Me and Kate. I'm so glad she was there. :)

Matt had to throw this one in of my red hair.

Don't let the sunshine deceive you. It was COLD out there. Kate was kind enough to let me borrow her gloves. She was a lifesaver, seriously.

Anyways, sorry it took so long to get these posted. But unless you were in doubt, it really did happen. :)

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!!

Well, we had a very good visit with Marie, Tansy, Peggy, Russ, Lindsay, Maura, and Emily. Peggy and family got here the day after Christmas, just in time for dinner. I had put on a chicken in the crockpot and made some mashed potatoes, gravy, and green beans. After a day on the road, home cooked food sure tasted good. Kate came over with Paisley, so she was there to visit. After staying up late, visiting, Kate went home, and we all hit the sack. Kate took Maura home with her to help with the boys in the morning. Saturday, we weren't really sure what we were going to do. We decided on a movie, and Marie and Tansy showed up right as we were getting lunch together. It was decided that Marie would stay with the boys and Emily, Kate would take Paisley, and we would see the Benjamin Button movie. That was a lot of fun. Lindsay and Maura went to the mall to visit some friends, and the rest of us came to my house for pasta dinner. Then Kate had to get the boys home to bed (I think it was the first time she had done it all alone, go Kate!) and Peggy, Marie, Tansy, Pam, and Emily played some games. We started off with "Last Word," which was hilariously fun. Then we played "Imagine If," which was more fun once we modified the rules. The girls (Lindsay and Maura) got home before 11, and we stayed up to visit for a little bit before heading to bed. Matt was on duty, so he was going to get off early in the morning, so I set the alarm for 6am, so I could put on the beignet dough early enough for beignets (New Orleans doughnuts). I didn't want to wake up the girls who were on couches, so I brought the breadmaker into my bedroom. Imagine that! Matt got home, everyone started getting up, and the dough finished. I started rolling it out, Matt got the hot oil ready, and we made some yummy pastries for everyone. Unfortunately, we didn't take any pictures. I think everyone like it. Then, everyone started to get ready for church, and Marie and Tansy started to get ready for their drive home. Peggy was straightening Lindsay's hair, and I asked her if she wanted to straighten MY hair. She was game, so after Marie and Tansy left, she began. One hour and ten minutes later, my hair was stick straight. I looked so different! That is only the second (and a half) time that my hair has been straight. I think it makes me look so different, it is weird. Maybe because my red curly hair is such a big feature, I don't notice my other features as much. So when the hair is gone (or straight in this case) it is easier to really look at my face.

Anyways, Sunday was church, when Kate's baby Paisley was blessed. Kate and Ben were the speakers in sacrament meeting. Parker and Preston were so cute! Then, after church, we all went to Kate and Ben's for "heavy hor d'oeuvres" which ended up being chicken wings and deer kabobs, with chips and dip. It was so good. We all had a good time visiting, and then we headed home. Matt and I went to bed early (he was exhausted) and everyone else stayed up for a movie. Monday, we weren't sure what to do. We thought about the mall, or the beach. Well, it wasn't as warm as Sunday had been (in the 80s), but we thought it might still be cool to go to the beach. So we headed down there. There's a playground right on the sand, and the boys had fun playing. Emily was looking for shells and rocks, and she and Russ headed down to the water to look. It wasn't hot out, but it was pleasant. We stayed there for a little bit, then decided to head back to Kate's house to play games and make tacos for dinner. We played "Truth or Myth" which was fun. Then we broke out Boggle. With so many good players, it was hard to score big. I ended up winning with 25 points. We ate dinner (thanks, Russ, for making the tacos) and with only one minor incident (ask Kate if she wants to tell you), we had a good dinner. After dinner, it was sitting around, talking, playing games. We tried "Singing Bee" but no one but Pam, Peggy, and Kate were really into it. The boys got bathed and put to bed, then we had to go home to go to sleep. Tuesday, Russ went out on the boat with Ben and Benji, and had a good time, even though it was cold. He caught a big fish. Meanwhile, Kate, Peggy, Pam, and the girls and boys went to the MacArthur Center Mall in Norfolk. We only really shopped the bottom floor before we got tuckered out. We headed up to the food court for some lunch, then headed home. Peggy, Pam, and Lindsay ran some errands, and then met everyone at Kate's. We decided to play another game, and I got Matt to come over and play with us. We played a new game that Peggy picked up, "Hit or Miss." Another good board game. Then everyone headed out to Donna and Benji's for fried fish. Matt and I went home b/c we had to take a friend to the airport. When everyone got back here, we had another good visit, and Peggy and I stayed up way too late before going to bed. The Blairs headed out at about 5:30, and Matt and I got up to see them off. Then we headed back to bed for some much needed rest. Having guests over is fun, but it sure is exhausting.

So, to recap, we had 4 Helm sisters in one room at the same time, and we all got along 100% of the time. The cousins had fun playing with each other. We played 5 different board games (6 if you count Singing Bee) and all around had a good time. Here are some of the pictures from the visit. Sorry, Marie. I don't have any pics of when you were here. My camera battery died, I think. Anyways, any time you all want to come back, you are more than welcome. We'd love to have you.