Archive | April, 2009

April Showers

April 6, 2009

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“April Showers” is right. After a phenomenally warm start to the month, the past several days have been soggy and cold. We saw snow Saturday, and more is forecast for Wednesday this week. And in between, it rains. I had hopes of getting some of the spring yard work done this week, but forget it now. It’s no fun raking old leaves through the mud! Some of my bloggy friends in Texas are reporting an END to their spring and are now entering the SUMMER season. That just blows my mind! My tulips are slowly, slowly crawling out of the mud, upward.

Tulips Leaves

The only thing with any buds right now is the lilac. I wanted to get a photo, but it turned out poorly.

I do like shade gardens, so the non-stop rain isn’t too disappointing. I like the way wet rocks look when they are nestled in ivy and moss.

Wet Rock

Wet Rock 2

The animals are restless, too. My cats pace at the door, longing to go out, but I won’t let them out in the rain and mud. The dog loves the mud and it is impossible to keep her out of it, so she needs constant bathing. Outdoors, the robins and bluejays are here. We have a feeder and they have been very happy dipping into the birdseed while we all wait for the sun to come back and dry things up.

I bought my vegetable seeds and am waiting until the ground warms (and dries up) to plug them into the soil. Everything is in a “wait” mode. It’s too cold and damp to actually DO anything; yet it’s too warm now to be patient while we wait. Such is spring in the Northeast!

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WHOA

April 4, 2009

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Daisy the Mutt

I gave my little beagle, Daisy, a chewie bone. She decided to bury it in the ground today. It’s been raining for the past three days and the yard is a disaster. Usually her area here has nice turf grass… but WHOA.

Daisy the Mudd

A face only a mudder could love. So to speak. HA!

One of my daughters said Daisy was exuberantly trotting around the yard, chomping on sticks and making a general mess. Then Daisy stopped suddenly, and went sliding in the mud, like Casey at the bat of Mudville. Whoops. Guess it’s bathtime for the beagle again! (She prefers mud to baths, poor doggy, lol).

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We Got a Lawn Tractor!

April 2, 2009

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Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we have lived on this property– all acre and a half– for almost twelve years WITHOUT a lawn tractor. When I used to mow the lawn with our push mower, it took me SIX hours a week. I had to break it up into twice a week. It was grueling! After the kids got big enough, they split up the job, but it was still an arduous job. One of my neighbors took pity on us (plus he wanted us to allow his son to play touch football on our lawn from time to time) and mowed the back half of the yard with his lawn tractor. It was a good deal— he mowed, we let his kids play on the turf.

But I am thrilled to finally have my own tractor! I don’t know what took us soooo long to get one?! The kids love it. We spent some time today, teaching them how to use it.

Tractor1

Tractor2

First a lawn tractor, next.. maybe a woodstove? Maybe– just MAYBE– a new kitchen?! My world is filled with hope now! Woooo!

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Watch and Learn, Weedhopper

April 2, 2009

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I took the boys to the dental hygienist the other day. I just love this dentist’s office, everyone is so friendly and the place is so clean and colorful. So as the hygienist worked on my son’s teeth, we chatted for a while. We talked about education in general, and online education in particular, which is becoming very popular.

She said to be a dental hygienist, all you need is a two-year degree. The courses are mostly science-based, and it’s a pretty heavy dosage of a science education. Honestly, as fun as the hygienist made her work look, I don’t think that’s something I’d really like to do. I like teaching– not necessarily in a school, but I like giving instruction on tjhings I know. Maybe I’d be better suited as a tutor or some kind of a specialist in instruction. That would be fun, I think! Then again, there’s the education. So many employers are paying less attention to merit and more attention to that piece of paper from a college. But the good thing is that online institutions have become just as competitive and instructional (even more so, now) as “real” colleges and universities. One particular place that has some interest is the School of Education at Saint Xavier University. They are based in Chicago, but have become renowned for their outstanding MS Curriculum. The curriculum is suited for modern instructional methods, including integrating technology, literacy, and development of curriculum for K-12 all the way up and into college level and specialized instruction. I think it looks great! If you are interested in learning more about Saint Xavier University’s online program, check out the website. The School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and they offer degrees in business, education, and health care.

The more I think about our present economy and the employment future, the more I see that the days of getting a 9-5 salaried job at a factory for your lifetime is OVER. Workers today have to be more innovative, more flexible, and more educated than at any time in our history. I’m keeping all this in the back of my mind for myself but also for my children. I think online educating is the way to go: it’s extremely flexible, affordable, and convenient.

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