Archive for the ‘Fun’ category

Hallucinating Star Wars Style

January 10, 2013

It happened on New Year’s Eve just minutes after midnight. My husband and I were at our friends’ house, celebrating the holiday together. When the clock struck twelve, we rang in the New Year and declared it time to get some sleep. Tom and I stepped into our hosts’ youngest son’s bedroom. We were swallowed up by the Star Wars galaxy.

Perhaps it was the champagne. Perhaps it was the French food we consumed, but as soon as the lights were turned out and my body hit the Star Wars sheets, Obei-Wan-You-Know-Me appeared.


“Princess Leiabrarian, don’t go to sleep,” he whispered. “I need your help. Dark Vader has cut off the electricity to the library. Yoda-Le-He-Hoo and his students can’t see the books of knowledge they need in order to become Jedi. And even if they could see the books, they can’t check them out because the computer is as dark as Dark Vader!”


“Students not able to check out books!” I cried. “That’s dastardly! Princess Leiabrarian will take care of this!”

Soon Obei-Wan-You-Know-Me and I were in a speedy starfighter on our way to the Star Wars galaxy.

Jabba the Mutt was guarding the door to the library. Slobbering and  growling, he was letting no one in or out. Dark Vader was inside. He was engulfed in darkness, making sure no books of knowledge reached the hands of Yoda-Le-He-Hoo and his would-be Jedi.

“Get me a lightsaber,” I commanded

I rapidly swung the lightsaber through the air. It produced a high pitch, which sent Jabba the Mutt into a frenzy. He ran from his post and freed the entrance to the library.

With my lightsaber, I made short work of Dark Vader. He was banished to an outer galaxy until he could see the light of his evil ways. Electricity was quickly restored, and book titles flashed from their shelves.

It was time to help Yoda-Le-He-Hoo educate his students. To my surprise, no one was looking for books of knowledge, they were clamoring for Star Wars books.

I knew exactly what they wanted. They were just like my second grade students, fighting over who would get to check out the next Star Wars book.


Some Well-Read Books


I wrote down a list of books and suggested they try the intergalactic library system.

My job was done. I returned to my Tom Solo, who was peacefully snoring under the Star Wars sheets. He had no idea I had traveled to a distant galaxy to do what a librarian must do.

Like I said, maybe it was the champagne or the French food that caused my Star Wars hallucination, but then how do you explain the text I got on my phone that night.


Check out some of the 43,800+ Star Wars  titles I found on the Intergalactic Internet.

I’m Back!

July 31, 2012

True to my word I said I’d return at the end of July to continue to dazzle and entertain with my bi-weekly blogs, and here I am.

It’s been a busy six weeks since I last blogged. During that time, my husband, Tom, and I have been to Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, Illinois, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

Summer has always been a perfect time for me to catch up on reading, but not this summer. Instead of Fifty Shades of Grey, our summer began with fifty shades of red. I’m talking about red paint.

Our daughter bought a condo in Boston, and “Daddy” agreed to paint. He didn’t realize she wanted him to paint every wall in the condo, using several different colors. Deciding which shade of red to use as an accent wall in her bedroom proved to be the most daunting task. She had every sample from the red color palette taped to the wall. Tom was seeing red by the time she made her decision.

End Result

In between painting and traveling back and forth to Wisconsin, we attended a shower and three weddings. Tom and I measure our life in stages, and we happen to be in – Our Friend’s Children Are Getting Married – stage.

Our first wedding was in the New England area. The groom was from New Hampshire. The bride was from Pennsylvania. The venue of choice was in Connecticut.


Our next wedding was in downtown Chicago right after a wicked thunderstorm. Streets were flooded and trees were down, but nothing stops true love.

Chicago and …

A Bucky Badger Wedding Cake?

For wedding three, it was onward and upward to Minnesota.


The best part about attending these weddings in different states was that I could wear the same dress!

We also got together with my sister and her husband for a mini vacation in Boston and Portland, Maine.

The Freedom Trail and good food were on the Boston menu.

Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum

Tall Ships

Lobster Mac ‘N’ Cheese

That was followed by a trip up the coast to Portland, Maine, the Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, and more good food.

Portland Head Light

Lobster Linguine

I have literally eaten my way through this summer. This is NOT good. I need to keep my girlish figure because we have yet another wedding to attend in November. (And, yes, I’ll probably wear the same dress!)

Right now it’s home sweet home for us. Tom is taking care of the parched lawn, meager garden, and dead flowers. I am busy chasing the dust bunnies that have multiplied since the last time I cleaned. I’d better hop to it!

From Sport Panties to Thongs

May 29, 2012

We’ve come a long way, baby! Can you imagine wearing the “fine white cotton pantie” under slacks and with play clothes?”

Definitely not sexy according to today’s standards.

Look at that Barbie doll waist on the sketch of the flannel slacks and white shirt! No way would those sport panties fit nicely under those slacks without revealing a bulky panty line.

Maybe the elastic sport girdle is the answer. According to the add, it’s for the “young figure.” I guess if you have an old figure you’re out of luck. Go figure!

Fashions come and go. Sometimes they even make a comeback. (These fashion disasters reappeared in a box of old love letters from my parents and grandparents. Hmmm … I wonder what that signifies.)

It looks like yesterday’s girdles have morphed into today’s body shapers. Thank goodness the “sport pantie” is a thing of the past and underwear has become smooth and sexy. Thank you, Victoria’s Secret.

It’s interesting to take a peek into the past and see how fashions have evolved. One thing is for sure. Over the years, lingerie has gotten smaller, but the prices have gotten bigger!


May 22, 2012

This past weekend we embarked on a journey of social engagements that will keep us busy until the end of July. This isn’t normal for us. Our social calendar is what some people would consider boring. Suddenly, after years of boring, we find our calendar jam-packed with graduations, showers, weddings, dinners, weekend guests, and a vacation.

We have a conundrum. With all this social activity, who’s going to cut the grass and weed the garden? Who’s going to chase the dust bunnies in the house and the ravenous rabbits in the yard? Who’s going to take out the garbage and recycle bins and bring them back inside? Who cares? I surely don’t.

It would have been nice if these events had been spaced more evenly throughout the year, but since they’re not I’m going to take advantage of all the invitations to enjoy time with friends and family. We’ll take care of the rest later after we rest later.

Sometimes boring is good, but not this summer. The party-hearty journey has begun!

The graduate enjoying a cool beverage at the UW-Madison Union Terrace.

Party-hearty with these picture books!

Bumble-Ardy by Maurice Sendak

If You Give a Pig a Party by Laura Numeroff

I’m Invited to a Party! by Mo Willems

Miss Spider’s Tea Party  by David Kirk

Teacher Appreciation Week

May 11, 2012

The teacher’s lounge is filled with cookies, cake, fruit, salty snacks, and candy. It’s Teacher Appreciation Week – also known as The Week You Gain Five Pounds.

Normally, the parents in our school are thoughtful and very supportive, but during Teacher Appreciation Week, they go all out. Besides the goodies in the teacher’s lounge, the Home & School Association treat the teachers and staff to a delicious dinner. Along with the meal, everyone is presented with a gift made by the Pre-K through Eighth grade students.

This year we received note cards. They’re something every teacher can use – for thank yous and for those “we need to talk” moments. I love these note cards!

Pictures were taken of art projects classes worked on throughout the year and made into note cards. Creativity abounds!

Some days being an educator can be disheartening. Then something wonderful happens — a smile, a completed homework assignment, an “aha” moment by a student — that makes you remember why you chose teaching as a career. It’s nice to be recognized by students and parents, but I’m glad Teacher Appreciation Week comes only once a year. Otherwise, we’d all have to join Weight Watchers!

A special shout-out to all you caring parents and students!

Library Spills and Brook Parts

January 6, 2012

Sometimes the tongue and brain don’t always cooperate, and things spill out of our mouths that don’t make sense. It can happen to anyone.

Take the answer given to me by a second grade student when I asked him to name the part of a book that has a list of the chapters. With a bit of thought, he answered, “table of conscience.” I gave him a smile and thumbs up for a good try.

After class, I got to thinking. What if there was a book with a table of conscience? Instead of being faced with the prospect of feeling stressed or guilty about a choice we have to make, we could refer to the book.

Suppose you’re on a diet and you’ll totally die if you don’t have a tiny piece of cake. In the Table of Conscience Book, turn to the chapter called “Have Your Cake and Eat It, Too” for advice. Or what if your friend wants to fix you up with her cousin who has a “nice smile?” What do you do? Go to the chapter called “In the Eye of the Beholder” for help. And what about that to-do list you don’t want to do because you’d rather watch the football game? Go to the “Hail Mary Pass” chapter for the answer to this conundrum. Is that little white lie you’re about to tell right or wrong? Check out the chapter on “Swear to Tell the Truth.” It will tell you nothing but the truth. 

With a slip of the tongue, I think that young student is onto something. The Table of Conscience Book could be the answer to all our worries.

A Visit to Chicago

November 29, 2011


My husband, my daughter, and I just blew in from the windy city. Our annual trip to Chicago coincided with the beginning of the Christmas season. For one day, and one night, the three of us ate, drank, and were merry in one of our favorite cities. Spirits were high, and the weather was unseasonably warm. It was a perfect day to be caught up in the sea of people bobbing along the streets and sidewalks.

Visiting a big city is the ultimate good time. There are museums, parks, sports teams, fabulous restaurants, unusual architecture, and in Chicago, The Magnificent Mile. Energy and excitement ooze from everywhere. If you do nothing else other than walk the city streets, it’s an experience not to be missed.

“Chicago, Chicago, that toddlin’ town

   Chicago, Chicago, I’ll show you around…”

During the day…

 At night…


The Water Tower

The Fourth Presbyterian Church


A Fountain of Light

Modes of Transportation

The “L”

A Car

A Horse and Carriage

Our Visit to Marshall Field’s (aka Macy’s)

We had brunch around the famous Christmas tree in the Walnut Room

Inside Marshall Field’s

  Outside Marshall Field’s

And there are always celebrities to see…

A Peek at Marilyn Monroe

Chicago rocks!

Pumpkin People on the Prowl

October 25, 2011

The Pumpkin People are back! On our visit to Jackson, New Hampshire a few weeks ago, we were greeted not only by beautiful fall foliage and perfect weather, but also by Pumpkin People. They make their appearance each October. Area businesses choose a theme and use pumpkins to create a tableau to scare and entertain visitors.

It was great fun to see the artistic talents of the business owners as we wandered around the village. Here are a few for you to enjoy.

My Favorite:  Can you name the book?

Pumpkin People need Pumpkin Books. Check these out.

Pumpkin Jack written and illustrated by Will Hubbell (Albert Whitman & Co., 2000), Pumpkin People written by Sandra Lightburn and illustrated by Ron Lightburn (Nimbus Publishing, 2009), Pumpkin Town! written by Katie McKy and illustrated by Pablo Bernasconi (Sandpiper, 2008), The Very Best Pumpkin written by Mark Kimball Moulton and illustrated by Karen Hillard Good (Paula Wiseman Books, 2010), Pumpkin Day, Pumpkin Night written by Anne Rockwell and illustrated by Megan Halsey (Walker Childrens, 2001)

Fat Cell Explosion and Wholesome Books

May 20, 2011

Recently, I bought boneless chicken breasts at a grocery store that looked more like turkey breasts. If those chickens wore bras, Mother Hen would have had to special order bras to fit their fifty-two double F breast size. To put it simply, one breast could have easily fed a family of four.

What’s happening to our food?

This past week there was a newspaper article about watermelons exploding in China. It seems that farmers fed the melons overdoses of growth chemicals during rainy weather.

Plants + Water + Chemicals = BOOM!

Fat cells are becoming the new fad in our population. Why? This is my highly unscientific theory. First of all, many of us don’t eat right. Eating large portions of fast food too often and making poor snack choices have become a way of life for many. Secondly, chemicals are fed to plants and animals to plump them up and get them to the market faster. We ingest those chemicals which, in turn, cause us to “grow.” If we don’t make healthy food choices and we continue to eat the fast food way, we’re getting a double whammy of enhanced foods.  

There will be consequences if we don’t start to change our ways. I can see the headlines now:  “BOOM! American Population Literally Explodes!” And there we are – all over the front page! 

Don’t wait a minute longer. We may not be able to save ourselves, but we can save our kids by getting them on the road to healthy eating. You can start by following these tongue-in-cheek suggestions.

Eat oatmeal because your mother said it was good for you.

Buy organic, but be prepared to pay through the nose and have little left to feed the stomach.

Grow your own food. Note:  Chickens and cows are not easy to grow.

Better yet, stop eating food and feed your brain. Have your kids devour these wholesome books instead.

For Girls:  Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery, The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, Heidi by Johanna Spyri

For Boys:  Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates by Mary Mapes Dodge, Call of the Wild and White Fang by Jack London, Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder, Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Tuesday Was A Dinger!

May 13, 2011

Who would have thought words like ball game and baseball could cause such a buzz? Well, that’s exactly what happened when I posted my blog Tuesday morning. For some reason those simple words set the ball in motion. They caught someone’s eye and my blog was posted on WordPress. com’s “Freshly Pressed” page. It was a home run miracle for me. My site stats rose faster than a disgruntled fan’s temper!

Since I started writing my blog, I’ve challenged myself to create interesting posts every Tuesday and Friday because I’m always looking for ways to hook new readers. Then on Tuesday, out of the blue, a curve ball was thrown at me which sent me into a blog game tizzy.

Suddenly there were tons of people reading my blog and posting comments. I’m not crying foul here. You’ll find no complaints from me. It was fun reading what people had to say and finding out there are many, like me, who consider baseball boring, but I also heard from those diehards who love baseball above all else.

One of my favorite comments was from a voracious Red Sox fan that began, “Dear God, your blasphemous mouth, rejecting box seats at Fenway…” I may not love baseball, but I love people who are passionate about what life offers them. So thanks “Freshly Pressed” for putting my blog out there. It’s been fun.

I hear there’s a Red Sox/Yankee’s game tonight, but you won’t catch me watching it. Maybe I’ll read about it in the newspaper tomorrow. Okay, that’s a bunch of bull from the bullpen!

Has anyone heard of this team?

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