Friday, February 29, 2008

take a leap?

1) it's payday! obviously i didn't get into the special education business for the money. i've always loved the therapeutic side of my job. but it would be dishonest if i said i didn't look forward to getting paid.
2) matthew and mathilda marinello, children of my friend, jessica. we met at the first school i worked at out of college. she was wild! from belgium, so she sp0ke with a french accent. dyed her hair blond, kissed a handful of female coworkers (myself included) at happy hours after one too many, endured a roller coaster relationship with her military boyfriend. and what a delightful surprise - ended up marrying him! she's been living in maryland for the past five or so years. she's back to her natural brown hair, sets up playdates for her children, and is expecting another one in three months! she sends photo albums of her kids every month. their family pictures look like postcards, or ones you find in magazines. every time i view her albums, it makes me smile.
3) out of the six years i've been at orchard school, i've never enjoyed an assembly as i have today! code red rover safety crew set up a house on the blacktop! safety ranger jeff spent 45 minutes with our kids reviewing dangers and ways to prevent them around the house. it was safe to say that all of the teachers were equally entertained as the students!
4) collaboration - i've had my deal of hardships managing some of my staff. some need more training, others are less reliable, a few are just an unfit match for my clients. today i realized that i've got a few strong teams set up. it's nice that i can look at my kids' binders and see things getting done.
5) this tree is one of the nicer things to look at on orchard campus. i didn't realize until today, but it has the most beautiful pink flowers. and as i looked around, the school is covered with them! it's amazing how something so stunning has been in front of me for so long and yet i never realized it.
6) ry worked from home today. i planned to meet him at home for lunch. we went to get sandwiches at my favorite sandwich shop! it kills me to think that i've been here six and a half years, working just a quarter mile from california sourdough and barely tried it out about two months ago. ry tried the left over half of my sandwich a while ago but it was in the fridge for about 4-5 hours. not the same experience at all! so i was excited about him going and trying the real thing with me! he ordered the turkey and, since it was friday, i got the tuna. i was pleasantly surprised with mine. and ry liked his too!
7) while munching on our sandwiches, we watched an episode of throwdown with booby flay. he was up against owner/chef of auntie em's kitchen in los angeles and cupcake wiz, terri wahl. she made her signature red velvet cupcakes, a buttermilk batter with red food coloring topped with her decadent cream cheese frosting. bobby made more of a gourmet-type cupcake, gingerbread flavored and frosted with a mango pureed icing with candied ginger. the judges (one was a chef from sprinkles) chose bobby's.
8) so i'm not the most dainty girl...i clogged ry's toilet after lunch. i'm guessing it was more of a "tissue issue" rather than the obvious. i wasn't able to use the plunger to unclog it. so where do most people go to find the answer to something? yes, i goggled "tips on unclogging a toilet". a few squeezes of dawn dish washing soap and some hot water did the trick!
9) poker with the guys. i finished in second place the first game and fifth the second game. i am currently in third place.
10) today is leap day. as i reflect on my day, it wasn't one where i took any risks, or did anything unconventional. i'm pretty unaffected by the fact though. after all, i did take a test this week to figure out my greatest fear. the results: "you are most afraid of moving forward". oh well, maybe in another four years...

Thursday, February 28, 2008

full circle

1) i don't know which picture i should have posted...i've been thinking of making fried rice all week. target sells spam! i don't know what i was more excited about...finding spam or that target sells it.
2) without going into too much detail, my stomach was feeling a little funny last night. i woke up at around 3am this morning with "aches". popped two chewable tablets of pepto-bismol and i was all good. these suckers have never failed me!
3) today is ron's birthday. although my family keeps in touch and sees him more than i do, i am still very thankful to have him in my life.
4) - i have this website bookmarked. smile you're breathing...such a simple sensible thought. breathing just seemed like an ordinary response until noralie got sick. i unwittingly volunteered to donate a lung if that was necessary to ensure my sister's health. i was so oblivious to what that would really mean until noralie told me not to underestimate the strength of your lungs. who was i to think it would be so simple for me to breath with the same limited capacity that noralie had been?
5) this picture came up on when i searched "comfort". AS never has really taken a like into anyone other than jose, who works with him 30+ hours. i was sitting on a bench at recess watching y play on the structure when AS came and sat beside me. he didn't say anything but he looked unsettled. i'd like to think that by seeking a familiar person, he gained some form of comfort.
6) i am fascinated by this picture! they're cupcakes! it's vanilla cupcake batter mixed in with a bit of green food coloring, coconut, vanilla frosting and jellied candies. it doesn't sound like my most preferred combination of sweets, but i'm dying to attempt to recreate these!
7) i opened up a bank of america account last week and received my atm card in the mail today. i have a washington mutual and california coast credit union account but i'm especially excited about b or a's "keep the change" service. each time you buy something with your bank of america check card, they round up your purchase to the nearest dollar amount and transfer the difference from your checking account to your savings account. time to shop!
8) jose recommended this book he is currently reading: born on a blue day by daniel tammet. the author lets readers in on how his mind works - numbers have shapes, emotions have colors, and math is as easy as blinking. he can learn to speak a language fluently from scratch in a week and has a complusive need for order and routine. i think i'll pick this up's a nice window into my children's minds instead of guessing or assuming their thoughts.
9) the lakers are killing the heat right now! i know that's not saying much seeing that miami's current record is 10-44! they have just been playing extremely well. with the pau gasol trade, their record is 12-1! plus the fact that this game is on national television excites me because i rarely get to watch a lakers game up here...that is until sunday, march 23rd...ry got us tickets to watch them play the warriors. can't wait!
10) children definitely occupy most of my happy thoughts. i sent an e-mail out to penny and james because i can't stop thinking about their girls. i often find myself staring at my students with absolute wonder in my eyes and sentiment in my heart. but as far as having any of my own, probably not in my immediate destiny. but thank goodness for them...i'd struggle to come up with my entries!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

concise contentment

1) frasier reruns - i think only cindy and james get this. love this show!
2) gerber daisies - just the sight of them puts me in a cheerful mood. receiving them, even better.
3) london - i like fantasizing about traveling to this city. i love hearing english people speak with their british accents. they can make any word sound sophisticated.
4) tweezers - endless hours of attempting perfection. by far, my favorite tool!
5) sunday afternoon on the island of la grande jatte by georges-pierre seurat - aside from ferris bueller's day off, i was exposed to this piece senior year of high school. i took a special interest in his use of pointillism, a technique which small distinct points of primary colors create the impression of a wide selection of secondary and intermediate colors (thanks, wiki!).
6) a charlie brown christmas - my favorite cartoon character + my favorite holiday = happiness all year round! j had a few moments of unexplained sadness during our session today. clips of this video made him giggle.
7) cheese rolls - for two quarters and a dime, you can get this sweet treat at valerio's bakery.
8) project runway - so the world knows that victoria beckham is the guest judge, but were still uncertain of who was going to bryant park. this is one of the few shows i look forward to all week!
9) sugar cookies - to pacify my craving for chocolate, i've been eating alternative sugary snacks. i had half a dozen of these tonight.
10) silence - completely underrated in my opinion. i sit here typing while ry reads and can hear my thoughts. things are clearer, more calm, focused.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

let there be light

1) the sun was out this morning. when i walked out into the family room, i thought the lights were left on from the night before because the room was illuminated with the sunshine.
2) my car started! it’s nothing out of the ordinary. i’ve had the original battery in my ford escape since august 2001. i know i should replace it soon, but i’m always so thankful to hear my engine run.
3) today is noralie’s birthday. her last birthday didn’t greet her with the best news, but she will be blowing out 41 candles today! her health has improved in the last few months. i can’t say there’s an improvement in her spirit because since she’s been diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis, she has been nothing but optimistic and hopeful. i know she must have her moments of fear and frustration but she still manages to stay strong and positive. i am happy that she is my sister.
4) i worked with y today. he refused to eat his peaches with me even though i’ve successfully got him to take bites, albeit minuscule in size, of his banana. he wasn’t as interactive or verbal with me today but upon arrival, he had the most pleasant smile on his face. it’s nice to be greeted that way…i should make that a habit to do the same with those who i encounter.
5) when i was in san diego last week, one of my first stops was henry’s to pick up some green apple licorice. veronna got me hooked on these last christmas when she brought some over for the gingerbread houses. the bag was gone within hours! i didn’t even get a chance to bring some home for ry to enjoy them with me. sooo delicious!
6) i worked with AS today in his preschool classroom. the kids were coloring when i arrived so i sat down and joined them. not too many people get paid for using crayons.
7) chronic headaches...that's been by ailment since age 18. tension, migraines, sinus - what type of headache is this one? i usually run right toward my excedirn migraine pain reliever bottle. today i decided to try out my little bottle of origins peace of mind. it's a sensory therapy lotion enhanced with peppermint. just a few dabs on your temples, earlobes and back of your neck relieves stress and, magically, my headache. i used it twice today.
8) after two weeks or so, i had a session with R. it's astonishing to see how much progress this child makes! he is talking so clearly and frequently. he cracked up every time he or i said "pepperoni". i hadn't heard him laugh like that in a while.
9) i'm the worse with keeping in touch with friends. and i consider jill my best friend. she sent me a simple text message to see if i was feeling better from my sinus infection last week. her friendship is one that i cherish and appreciate.
10) i have to be thankful for ry everyday. from the way he greets me when i come home to him doing the laundry. today he asked "how was your day?" like chris rock said, sometimes that's all we need to hear.

Monday, February 25, 2008

weekend reflection

1) the oscars were on last night. i only saw a handful of movies that were nominated in various categories so i was mainly watching for the fashion. i liked this dress worn by french actress marion cotillard. she ended up winning the academy award for best actress for her role in la vie en rose.
2) i finally got to meet my newest niece, peyton brady . darling, cherubic, precious, beloved...i can go on and on. i quite literally could not take my eyes off of her! her sister, zoe kaida, bears the same remarkable traits. and to see zoe's compassion and adoration with peyton melts my heart. i like this picture. to me, the smile on zoe's face defines a love that is so instinctive it cannot be taught.
3) my guilty pleasure is being a couch potato. i love to watch tv! on sunday, i saw a commercial for cesar dog food. there was this charming white dog. the main phrase i remember from the commercial was "i promise i'll be there when you wake". i "googled" the breed of this dog. west highland white terrier, apparently recognizable as a mascot for a scotch whisky.
4) ah, vegas...ok, so that's not until april but i'm still very much looking forward to it! not so much the city itself but spending time with melanie, marianne, and theresa.
5) i'm spoiled by ryan. it was "rainy day recess" for us this weekend. we watched golf (well, he did i fell asleep), played scrabble and guitar hero, went shopping for our groceries for the week, and on sunday morning, he made me waffles.
6) although i'm not 100% catholic, i did make the conscious effort to oblige by the practices of the lenten season. i have abstained from eating meat on fridays and in addition, am on a chocolate fast. the first three days were a battle. twenty days into it, not so bad. i've even been perusing cupcake blogs ( with happy thoughts!
7) academy for salon professionals...given my wonderful experience at the paul mitchell school in san diego, i was on a mission to find a similar program in the bay area. i did thanks to!
8) this picture always makes me smile! ry found it one day and put it on his desktop. this corgi is so happy! how can you not smile when you look at this?!
9) whenever i think something is impossible, i think of j. his tenacity, strength and attitude are admirable. people think i am the one who has to have patience with him. i think it's the other way around. he allows me to push him because i know he can achieve it.
10) my students had last week off so my sleeping patterns have been even more unusual. i didn't fall asleep last night, or shall i say this morning, until 3:30. i woke up feeling soooo tired. but i woke up. that's what matters.

mission statement:

people often think they don't have everything that they want but it turns out that most people have everything they need. how easy it is to notice things that are absent or insufficient...or no matter all the countless positive attributes someone may possess, they are quickly erased with the slightest flaw. i am choosing to focus on all the things during my day that bring a smile to my face...that make me happy just by the mere thought. surely i can easily think of ten but knowing that i can go on and on only fulfills my mission.