Showing posts from April, 2016

SOMWaD: Memories...

This morning I had the EPIC FAIL mom moment.  We all have them.  The moment where you feel like the worst mom on the face of the planet.  (When in reality if we WERE the worst mom in the world, we won't feel bad at all.  That is what would make you or me THE WORST mom ever.) Here's how it went down this morning at the breakfast table:  Son drops strawberry jam bounces off his shirt and onto the floor. I use a "bad" word (and I believe so did he; our family is developing quite a colorful vocabulary) as I get a paper towel to clean it up.  Son: "Mom you care more about this shirt than do you about me."  Me: "What?"  Son: "You said 'oh shit' because of the shirt. You care more about the shirt than me. Remember the time I fell down and tore my khakis? You were all pissed off that I ripped my new khakis and I was bleeding!" Okay, I *think* I vaguely remember this incident.  I remember the torn pants.  I can&

SOMWaD: "Ccrap" week

It's "Ccrap" week for my son.  What does that mean?  If you're a parent in my town, you probably know (or have figured it out).  It's standardized test week!  And in my opinion, the  Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers test (known as PARCC) is crap...or in PARCC-speak, CCRAP.  PARCC cuts into his regular school schedule, and as far as I know he this week he will be missing out on French and Gym (which are every other day classes) and his current cycle class which this week is computer. (In our school system there are 6 classes that students cycle through during the year:  Art, Music, Computer, Information Technology, Health and Advisory.)  From what he has told me he has testing in the morning, lunch and then his four core classes (Science, Social Studies, Math and Literacy) before the day ends. I went through the same school system as my son many, many years ago.  I vaguely recall taking some standardized tests with my number two

50 to 50: 5 Days In

It's day 6 of my 50 days to 50...which means there are 44 days to go until the big day.  (That is if my math is correct, I was never much good in math.  I wouldn't do so well on that new standardized testing that we do here in NJ, but that's a whole other story...)  Since I started blogging about my goal/challenge, I'm going to keep it up and be honest.  Here's what's been going on since Monday when the challenge started: I've walked at least 30 minutes every day.  Not that this was much of a challenge for me, since I've been doing that pretty much every day for the past 4 years.  The weather has been cooperating mostly, which means I've been able to get outside and walk early.  My longest walk was 4.17 miles which took me an hour and fifteen minutes.  Today (day 6) was my shortest time wise; just an hour and it started to rain.  Weather channel told me it was just cloudy.  Which it was when I started.  Then it

"Back" to Basics...

There was a big bru-ha-ha yesterday for students in NJ who were TRYING to take the PARCC test (for those not in the "know" PARCC is standardized testing that MAY in the future be a requirement for passing in order to graduate from high school).  There's been a lot of backlash about the test and that's too much to get into here.  (After all my posts are usually only a couple of paragraphs, not book length.)  For PARCC or against, yesterday was a major failure as the on line system that administers the test had a "glitch" meaning that students couldn't log in.  (Not a problem back in my day of standardized testing when all you got was a test packet and two #2 pencils.) Since the test is SUPPOSED to show readiness for college and careers; maybe the company behind the assessment (a word I personally's a test, let's call it a test) should get some of those students who couldn't log in up to their headquarters and see if they could find

1 Down...49 to Go???

If you've read my blog post   you know that I'm "celebrating" the big 50 this year. As I enter my half century ( hurts to say that), I'm trying to be a healthier me. That challenge started yesterday. The 50 day count down just happened to start on Monday AND the day after a long weekend of work/play.  Once a year my husband and I attend/work a "convention" from Friday afternoon to Sunday night.  This means long hours (I went up to our room "early" on Friday and Saturday night:  around 1 AM), poor food choices ($23.48 for a bad breakfast buffet?  Thank GOD for friends who brought in bagels with all the fixings, juice and personalized cups Dunkin' Donuts coffee on Sunday morning.  Who says bring a toaster to a hotel is bad idea?) and alcohol.  (Avoiding last year's sticker shock after one drink at the bar, I brought my own bottle!)  So needless to say, go

5 Days to 50 Days to 50

If you've read my blog post   you'll recall that I'm challenging myself for the 50 days that lead up to my big (gulp) birthday.  It's a mindful approach to the big day.  I will be doing my best to stress less (giving myself time every day to relax/meditate), get exercise in every day (30 minutes minimum) and eat healthier.   My focus will be on ME.  I want to feel better and I want to make  conscious  choices to that end. The emphasis is on  conscious  because I freely admit that I rarely THINK before doing.  My hands and my mouth are not easily controllable.  I speak to quickly some times and I definitely eat without thinking a majority of the time.  (The hands shoving whatever is within reach into the mouth is definitely a problem.)  So focusing on what I am doing when it comes to eating is going to be a BIG challenge for me.  I want to succeed when it comes to this challenge.  (That's my brain spe

Happy Blog-versary to Me

Three years!  Who would have thought that I'd actually keep this up for three years? I've been writing on and off all my life.  Hidden in the depths of my moldy and musty basement are the dreaded notebooks that prove this.  I can still remember the black and white composition book that I first starting writing in.  Was I in third, fourth or fifth grade at the time?  While I don't remember my age, I do remember the notebook.  I believe I colored the cover, filling in the white spots, with the colors of Bic markers.  They were the favorite of my 3rd grade teacher.  (Isn't amazing what useless trivia the brain can hold?  I don't think I'll ever forget Mrs. Williams' matching purse and shoes; stern, close cropped blondish hair and her Bic pens.)  It was in third grade that Mrs. Williams read to the class The Long Secret by Louise Fitzhugh, a sequel of sorts to Harriet the Spy which I wouldn't read until years later.  Mrs. Williams read many books to u

The Toaster Saga: Part 3

Oster is sending me a new toaster oven.  I should be grateful.  I'm not.  I'm thankful and appreciative, but I'm still slightly annoyed.  Why?  I mean they are sending me a FREE toaster oven.  Shouldn't I be happy? Well, all in all, I am happy.  I think I'm generally a happy person.  A toaster oven has nothing to do with it. If anyone is just tuning in, let me TRY and give you a brief recap: My toaster oven door is broken.  It won't shut all the way and this has happened with numerous toasters that I have owned.  But under 4 years it's happened twice.  While I have owned different brands of toaster ovens (and let's' face it they are all pretty much the same), the last two I have had were Osters.  So I emailed Oster to tell them that I wasn't happy with their product as the last two toaster ovens I have purchased have failed in the same way 18-24 months after purchase.  (I am well aware that th

Oster, Oster, Broken Customer (Service)

An addendum to yesterday's blog post. Since I know that just whining about broken toaster ovens is pointless, I did send an email to Oster (which of course is NOT Oster, but  Jarden Consumer Solutions) my issue.  I wasn't asking for a new toaster or any kind of restitution; I knew that the warranty had expired several months prior.  My point was to let them know about the quality issue of their product. I did get a response back which read:   Thank you for making me aware of the issue you have experienced with your toaster oven. I would like to get this resolved for you as soon as possible. Please send me the following information so I can determine the best way to assist you: • Your Physical Address and Telephone Number • Place of Purchase • Date of Purchase  • Model Number (see instructions) • Date Code (see instructions) • Supplier Code (see instructions)  I replied:   Answers are below in red.  Please note that this toaster oven replaced another Oster

Oster, Oster, Broken Toaster

You can probably guess where this blog post is going to go...or where it started off. Today's rant is about Toaster Ovens.  While I titled this post based on a cute little rhyme that stuck in my head and the fact that I currently own an Oster Toaster Oven (which it turns out is part of Jarden Consumer Solutions...can't trust any manufacturer these days), I have had too many toaster ovens over the past few years.  I purchased Hamilton Beach, Black and Decker...basically any name slapped on a toaster oven. Every single one of them has failed.  All in the same way and all after approximately the same time frame (just over the warranty period of a year but less than two years of purchase.) What horrible thing am I doing to my toaster ovens that keeps breaking them?  Quite simply, I use my toast oven pretty much every day.  I make toast (okay, more often English Muffins) at least 5 days out of the week.  I reheat cold pizza.  (It's much better than using the m

Welcome to Spring Break!

Did you notice the traffic was lighter on this morning?  Maybe you didn't due to the snow, sleet, rain or whatever it was when you were driving.  Welcome to spring break in my town! For those of us who have not fled to Florida or other warmer destinations, this hardly seems like a spring break.  It was hard to tell yesterday morning what was ice (left over from the thunderous hail storm on Saturday night/Sunday morning) and what were white blossoms blown off the trees and scrubs from the gusts.  The ice did eventually melt (at least on my sidewalk) and we were left with trees that were struggling to keep any of their new foliage on their branches.  This is spring break? At least we here are lucky enough NOT to have to shovel.  (Am I jinxing things by saying that?)  We don't have the several inches of snow that upstate NY and New England are set to have.  Although I have put out my lawn furniture, I have not put away my shovels.  I don't want to use them though.  (

No April Foolin'

It's not a joke; although maybe I wish it were.  I am almost to the half century mark!  And to me that's a really rude awakening!  There's no denying that my life is at least half over!  There's no more thinking "I've only just begun." It's scary. In many ways, I still feel young.  In many other ways, I feel very old (especially when I got to school functions and see all the YOUNG parents, of which I am NOT!)  I could moan and groan about the aging process.  I could bitch about where the time has gone and what I had assumed I would have accomplished by this age and have not.  I could be happy and philosophical and view this as the "best years of my life are yet to be."  Most likely, my mindset is and will be a combination of all these things. The thing is, no matter how you slice it, this is a pretty big event.  Several years ago I got to thinking how I would want to celebrate the actual day.  My last "big" birthday (in my