Monday, December 29, 2008

It has been quite a week. After church last Sunday, I loaded my car up and drove up to MD to my sister's place. Traffic was great and I was able to attend a church in her town for the evening service. Now, my sister has two cats and I'm highly allergic to them, but I happened to manage it pretty well while at her place. Then, on Tuesday, we drove to MI to be with our family. My parents and brother live in a small house and the animals as well as the smoking like freight trains really started to get to me. My brother and I went out to do some Christmas shopping (but I would have scrapped the idea had I know it was only his second time driving in the winter...yipes!) and then went back home. I used my nebulizer, but it just did not help me at all. My mom then took me to the ER at about 3am. Five treatments and some steroids later, I was able to breathe some. We got home about 7am (we did some grocery shopping on the way). I did get a little bit of sleep, went to church that night, then went home. Our power went out and I needed to use my nebulizer so I went over to my uncle's house and stayed there. My dad picked me up before heading out to pick up his brother who lives in a group home. There I got to see Carole and catch up a little bit. I hadn't seen her in about a year. We then went home and opened out gifts and had dinner. All of it was nice. I was trying to tough it out and after a few rounds of the nebulizer again with no results, I went back to the ER (again, about 3-4am). That time they admitted for observation. I thought it was kind of funny that when I finally got to my room, I had breakfast before I got any sleep. The IV did not bruise as badly as it has done in the past, so that was good. I finally left the hospital at about 3pm and visited some of Nessa's friends with her. I opted to stay at my uncle's house for the remainder of my stay in MI.

In true family fashion, we had planned on leaving Saturday, but did not leave until Sunday night. With that change of plans, I was able to attend my "home" church again. I really missed my church family. We got to MD about 5am and my sister had to work at 6am. Yuck. I got a little more rest and then headed on my way to VA. Since I did not leave early enough, I got stuck in DC traffic (mostly stop-and-go) and doubled the time it should have taken me to get back. Thankfully, all the traveling done was basically uneventful.

Well, I'm home and safe. I'm back in my non-animal, non-smoking environment and I should be able to get my breathing back under control. I have been feeling a little light-headed today, but I'm thinking a good night of rest will help that.

I do hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! Even though I had a rough one, I'm thankful I was able to see my family again. That meant more than anything to me.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Me, Jay, and Nessa at the National Christmas Tree in Washington DC. :)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Well, I thought I'd let you know that I did not receive a husband in the pile of gifts at school today. The girls gave me candles and chocolates instead. :)

While on the subject of gifts, I just want to vent. Now, I like to give gifts. I try to be practical and give something that will be used. I have done this to a couple of people over the past couple of years. I'm just not going to this year. It's not that I expected a gift in return, but when you get someone a gift and all they do is drop hints about what they want this year without ever so much as to think about giving a gift in return, I feel like all they want is to get, get, get. I'm not buying gifts for those people this year. It's just not right. I feel the same with Christmas cards. Why should I take all that time and spend money on postage without even a card in return.

Some people just really rub me the wrong way these days.

This post probably makes me seem selfish, but really, I feel like I'm being practical with life in general.

Ah, well. That's my vent.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Ok, so I haven't been on in a while. Stuff has happened, but I just didn't blog about it.

Well, this week, one of my boys misheard what I said (South Carolina) and blurted out what he thought he heard: South Kackalacky. No joke. I couldn't help but laugh at that. Then I had to regain my composure and get the class back on track. He wasn't the only one with speaking difficulties, though. While I was talking with some colleagues, "trother buying" rolled right off my tongue. Nice, huh?

Now, the kicker this week came from one of girls who is very sweet and helpful. She told me that she knew what to get me for Christmas: a husband! lol

We have our class party tomorrow. I do hope it goes well.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

What a day! I had to assign 200 sentences to one student for running the hall and trying to argue with me about it. Then, I had a student complain about not feeling well, so we called his mom. She said she'd try to get there when could. It wasn't soon enough. This student up-chucked all over the boys' bathroom. And it stunk. I put on gloves, grabbed some paper towels, had a garbage bag doubled, had a student fill the mop bucket, and had another student go to the supervisor's class to ask for the aide I thought was in that day. The aide was not in so the Josh came down to see what the matter was. I told him and then he offered to clean up the mess. I am very grateful for that. I would have had a hard time keeping my own breakfast down.

My class got to see a black widow spider today. Someone brought it to my class asking if my kid would be interested in seeing it. It was in a covered glass jar inside a coffee container. I showed the kids and passed it along to the sixth grade. I had never seen a black widow in person. I never want to see another one. :)

I check out the local Freecycle chapter from time to time and try to see if there's anything useful being offered. I asked about a heated foot spa yesterday and was chosen to be the recipient of it. I picked it up earlier this evening. I'm delighted to have one in my possession now, but was brought a smile to my face was the little boy who opened the door. I wasn't sure which item was mine on the porch and I saw a light on in the house, so I rang the doorbell. A little boy, about 5-8 years old, answered the door. I could tell right away that he had Downs Syndrome. Well, after I found out which bag was mine, I was heading to my car and the little boy held out his hand and said, "Help!" and helped me down the stairs! It was too cute! He was going to try to walk me to my car as well, but I told him that he was very sweet, but since it was raining, he should go back to his dad so he wouldn't get wet. Seeing that little boy just brightened my day!

I did use the foot spa and it felt wonderful. :)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Vote now! (please)

Vote for any of Karyn R.'s from Fredericksburg, VA, daily

Monday, December 01, 2008

A view of Heaven

I received this in an email, but I know I've also read the room part of this in Joshua Harris's I Kissed Dating Goodbye. It's still thought provoking either way.

17-year-old Brian Moore had only a short time to write something for a class. The subject was what Heaven was like. 'I wowed 'em,' he later told his father, Bruce. 'It's a killer. It's the bomb. It's the best thing I ever wrote..' It also was the last.
Brian Moore died May 27, 1997, the day after Memorial Day. He was driving home from a friend's house when his car went off Bulen-Pierce Road in Pickaway County and struck a utility pole. He emerged from the wreck unharmed but stepped on a downed power line and was electrocuted.
The Moores framed a copy of Brian's essay and hung it among the family portraits in the living room. 'I think God used him to make a point. I think we were meant to find it and make something out of it,' Mrs. Moore said of the essay. She and her husband want to share their son's vision of life after death. 'I'm happy for Brian. I know he's in heaven. I know I'll see him.'
Brian's Essay: The Room...
In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I found myself in the room. There were no distinguishing features except for the one wall covered with small index card files. They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endless in either direction, had very different headings. As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read 'Girls I have liked.' I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realize that I recognized the names written on each one. And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was.
This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every moment, big and small, in a detail my memory couldn't match. A sense of wonder and curiosity, coupled with horror, stirred within me as I began randomly opening files and exploring their content. Some brought joy and sweet memories; others a sense of shame and regret so intense that I would look over my shoulder to see if anyone was watching.
A file named 'Friends' was next to one marked 'Friends I have betrayed.' The titles ranged from the mundane to the outright weird 'Books I Have Read,' 'Lies I Have Told,' 'Comfort I have Given,' 'Jokes I Have Laughed at ' Some were almost hilarious in their exactness: 'Things I've yelled at my brothers.' Others I couldn't laugh at: 'Things I Have Done in My Anger', 'Things I Have Muttered Under My Breath at My Parents.' I never ceased to be surprised by the contents.
Often there were many more cards than I expected. Sometimes fewer than I hoped. I was overwhelmed by the sheer volume of the life I had lived. Could it be possible that I had the time in my years to fill each of these thousands or even millions of cards? But each card confirmed this truth. Each was written in my own handwriting. Each signed with my signature.
When I pulled out the file marked 'TV Shows I have watched', I realized the files grew to contain their contents. The cards were packed tightly, and yet after two or three yards, I hadn't found the end of the file. I shut it, shamed, not so much by the quality of shows but more by the vast time I knew that file represented.
When I came to a file marked 'Lustful Thoughts,' I felt a chill run through my body. I pulled the file out only an inch, not willing to test its size and drew out a card. I shuddered at its detailed content.
I felt sick to think that such a moment had been recorded. An almost animal rage broke on me. One thought dominated my mind: No one must ever see these cards! No one must ever see this room! I have to destroy them!' In insane frenzy I yanked the file out. Its size didn't matter now. I had to empty it and burn the cards. But as I took it at one end and began pounding it on the floor, I could not dislodge a single card. I became desperate and pulled out a card, only to find it as strong as steel when I tried to tear it.
Defeated and utterly helpless, I returned the file to its slot. Leaning my forehead against the wall, I let out a long, self-pitying sigh.
And then I saw it.. The title bore 'People I Have Shared the Gospel With.' The handle was brighter than those around it,seemed newer, almost unused. I pulled on its handle and a small box not more than three inches long fell into my hands. I could count the cards it contained on one hand.
And then the tears came. I began to weep. Sobs so deep that they hurt. They started in my stomach and shook through me. I fell on my knees and cried. I cried out of shame, from the overwhelming shame of it all. The rows of file shelves swirled in my tear-filled eyes. No one must ever, ever know of this room. I must lock it up and hide the key. But then as I pushed away the tears, I saw Him.
No, please not Him. Not here. Oh, anyone but Jesus. I watched helplessly as He began to open the files and read the cards. I couldn't bear to watch His response. And in the moments I could bring myself to look at His face, I saw a sorrow deeper than my own.
He seemed to intuitively go to the worst boxes. Why did He have to read every one? Finally He turned and looked at me from across the room. He looked at me with pity in His eyes. But this was a pity that didn't anger me. I dropped my head, covered my face with my hands and began to cry again. He walked over and put His arm around me. He could have said so many things. But He didn't say a word. He just cried with me.
Then He got up and walked back to the wall of files. Starting at one end of the room, He took out a file and, one by one, began to sign His name over mine on each card. 'No!' I shouted rushing to Him. All I could find to say was 'No, no,' as I pulled the card from Him. His name shouldn't be on these cards. But there it was, written in red so rich, so dark, so alive. The name of Jesus covered mine. It was written with His blood. He gently took the card back. He smiled a sad smile and began to sign the cards. I don't think I'll ever understand how He did it so quickly, but the next instant it seemed I heard Him close the last file and walk back to my side.
He placed His hand on my shoulder and said, 'It is finished.' I stood up, and He led me out of the room. There was no lock on its door. There were still cards to be written.
'I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. '-Phil. 4:13 'For God so loved the world that He gave His only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.' If you feel the same way forward it so the love of Jesus will touch their lives also. My 'People I shared the gospel with' file just got bigger, how about yours?

Sunday, November 30, 2008

I had a pretty good weekend. I was able to spend time with my whole family at my sister's place in MD. Mom and I made the Thanksgiving meal and it turned out great. Ness had to work on Black Friday. I did not go shopping at all this year. Ness, Jay, and I took an evening stroll through the beautiful park down the road. I went back Saturday morning for a leisurely walk and also had my devotions there. There were many ducks, geese, and swans in the pond.

My car did get fixed, but it wasn't a couple hour job like my dad thought it'd be. It was more of an all day job since the fluid leak happened to be the water pump. The power streering belt was loose as well. Ah, the joys of having a vehicle.

I'm thankful for:
1. My family and friends
2. For God's love even though I don't deserve it
3. Living in America
4. My job
5. My students
6. My church
7. The opportunity to serve Christ
8. Freedom
9. For Jesus Christ dying on the cross for my sins
10. For the abilities God has given me

This is a short list of thanks. God has given me so much. As the Bible says, "Daily He loadeth us with benefits." He truly does if we take the time to notice. It's so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day things that we take for granted.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I was just able to upload the pics. :)

The VBC Ensemble went to another church and after, we went to Jalapeno's. They had the greatest cheese quesadillas.

The upper elementary went to the Ice Park for a field trip today. All almost went well. Two of my kids ended up getting hurt while skating, but other than that, it went well.

Another group shot

The upper elementary supervisor.

The surprise blessing waiting for me when I got back to school.
The note said, "Have a Happy Thanksgiving!"

I'd like to post some pictures, but they won't load. Maybe another time.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Nobody likes a boring spelling class!

These are my notes from the teachers' convention.

I. Primary objectives of spelling
a. Teach the spelling of many words
b. Learn to use the words correctly
c. Teach spelling rules

II. Other objectives
a. Increase vocabulary
b. To use a dictionary
c. To enjoy good poetry

III. Homework
a. How to set up the paper
b. Give HW 3x a week
c. Use good penmanship and copy carefully
(Could use as a penmanship grade)
d. Vary the assignment
(alphabetical order, 1x, 2x, write list backwards, make it a story, syllables, sentences)
e. Spelling Club - only have to write list 1x rather than 2x
f. Have students tell parents the list
g. Have students write and say the list at the same time

IV. Introducing a new lesson
a. Pronounce each word, emphasizing its sounds and syllables
b. Class repeats
c. Explain the meaning of unfamiliar words
d. Use each word in a sentence
f. Point out other aids in memorization

V. Practice the list
a. Say, spell, say (lasagna, l-a-s-a-g-n-a, lasagna)
b. Vocabulary: pursue, p-u-r-s-u-e, to chase, pursue
c. Vary the groups and the ways the words are spelled
(Football, cheerleader, boys, girls, computer, frog, crescendo, decrescendo, snap/stomp/clap)
d. Other activities (to be done after the list has been recited at least once)
contests, ruler tap, instant recall, proof-reading exercises, scramble words
e. Be creative

VI. Pen/paper reviews
a. Sentence dictation - listening skill, accuracy, and good penmanship
b. Copy Cats
c. 100% rows
d. Sweet Success
e. Be creative

VII. Poetry
a. Read it to the class with good expression and have them follow along
b. Explain the meaning of unfamiliar words
c. Mark pauses or accented words
d. Add motions
e. Work on the whole section, not line by line
f. Enjoy it

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

This link is great! Check it out!
Paper Craft Fun

I just wanted to share these great crafts again!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Today was interesting. Well, over the weekend, I noticed my bank account seriously lacking in funds and was hit with some overdraft fees. The only thing was, I was pretty sure I was set up so that wouldn't happen. I opened a savings account that could be pulled from. Apparently, that didn't happen. So, I planned a trip to the bank to figure out what happened. Now, with my car out of commission (which I think I narrowed down the problem and shared that with my dad), I was going to walk to the bank (not the first time I've done it either). As I was grabbing my purse, someone stopped me to ask me where I was going. I told him that I needed to take care of something at the bank and then he asked me to deposit his checks at his bank and that I could take his car. Yeah. Sure. No problem.
I was able to get things cleared up at my bank and even able to get the fees taken cared of. Big relief there. So, I then went to the other bank to make the deposits. I went through the drive-through line and everything was all well until I had one of those nearly choking experiences by the words coming someone else's mouth. Now, mind you, they weren't "bad" words, but they certainly weren't expected, either. As I was waiting for the receipt, the teller said, "Have a great day MRS. *_____*!" What?! No way!
Now, that takes a bit of trust for someone to ask another to make a deposit for them, so I was thinking that I was at least considered trustworthy. But, for someone else to think of me as his wife....ACK! And to think I used to do business with this bank...

Anyway, I am looking forward to the teachers' convention this week. Only two more school days and then off to Hampton. I even get to see some people from Fairhaven as well as some other friends from VBC. It'll be a better year for me, I think. It helps to finally know some other people outside of FBS (not that there's anything wrong with the people I know).

Thursday, November 06, 2008

I hate it when people try to mother me when they are not in the position to do so. It's so frustrating. I know someone who thinks that whatever she does is the best thing and therefore I should be just like her. I'd rather not. You can have your life because I do not envy you in the least. Thank you. Let's move on.

I talked to my brother this evening. I so miss making fun of him! I love the booger. :) My favorite line was when we were talking about the weather, I told him that is was nice here and maybe next week I'll pull out a sweater. He said that he has been wearing the hoodie Mom got him before school. Then I told him that he should should have it washed....(thinking...thinking...) He was so slow to that. :) (If you didn't get it, I'll be happy to explain...but it takes all the fun out of it.)

Things are really getting tough around here. I can't get ahead for anything. And my health insurance nearly doubled.

I've really been struggling in a different area. *__________* and I have been in communication since May. He's even called a few times and come to see me. Since school started, our communication has nearly come to a standstill. It's hard to understand what is going on right now. I did try to give him an easy way out (that was hard to do because I didn't want to do that), but what was I to do if I rarely hear from him? He responded with a "I don't want to lose all contact with you." And yet, I still don't hear from him. I don't even know what to call what we had, whether it was a relationship or a friendship. I find this fella to be a great guy with many of the same standards (music, especially). It's so hard to find guys with any standards these days, let alone Godly ones. He is a history teacher in a Christian high school and seems to have a wonderful opportunity serving the Lord where he is at. I think it is great to see a guy who loves what he is doing. The only thing is, he seems not to have any time for me, except for maybe a few minutes on the weekend, or every other weekend, to send me an email letting me know how busy he's been. I know all about how busy a teacher can get. I am one as well. In fact, I have 100 papers to grade right now. (And that's not an exaggeration). I'd be better if he would clarify where he wants to go in this friendship/relationship rather than let it die off. I'd like to say I'm content waiting on the Lord, but that'd be a lie. I am really tired of living on my own. It's no fun cooking for one (and I rarely cook because of that). I want someone to care for and someone to care for me. It really is hard to see all the people I grew up with getting married and having kids. I've drempt of that for some time now, but it seems more and more that all I'll be is an old maid. If that's what the Lord wants for me, then Ill learn to be content with it. *__________* has great potential. He's comitted to serving the Lord, committed in his job, and is one of those "nice guys." I just want/need some direction.

Anyway, I'm off to try to knock out some of this grading. This stuff is killing me! I can't stand grading penmanship papers! Their writing is better than mine!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Lord, You are in control. The outcome of this election will not surprise You. I know You are still in the miracle working business and we need a miracle to keep Obama from being elected President. Of course, You can still still produce good from evil (think Nebuchadnezzar, people). I trust in Your infinite goodness. The best thing a Christian can do is keep praying!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Just a regular day

So, I deal with kids all day. Many come up with these really lame excuses as to why they didn't finish (or start) their homework and today was no different. Mind you, they had the weekend to complete it and they had time to work on it (even finish it) in class on Friday. The biggest excuse I get is, "I didn't have time." Parents, please realize that the job of your child is to be a good student, not excuse maker. I get to talk to one parent who asked me if I read the note in the steno (which I had not since their child was tardy today). Apparently, as he was working on his book report with his father, the wise man that he is, realized that his done did not even read the book (which he had a month to do so). So, dad wrote a note to let me know that his child needs to have a "zero" for not completing the book. I completely agree. This is the second book he has failed to read this year. I am glad that his parents are stepping up and showing him that it is important to complete the tasks set before you. Thank you.

In after-school care in the pre-school (I work there when needed throughout the week), the kids were so wound up. A bunch of them wanted me to time them as they ran around the playground (a whopping 12-15 seconds that it takes). One little boy then says, "I'm fast than a car with sneakers!" Hehe... Oh, there was also a fender bender across the street as a little black car rear-ended a little black truck. This road is ridiculous. This stuff happens daily around here since it is so busy.

I'll be voting after school tomorrow. Josh is letting my borrow his car since mine is on the fritz again. I wanted to vote before school, but after will have to do.

Well, it's time to finish reading the book I started. I have enjoyed ending the evening with some light reading.

A questionnaire...I haven't done one of these in ages!


1. What is your middle name? Rene` (don't forget the accent mark!)

2. How big is your bed? Twin

3.What are you listening to right now? Marion Avenue Boys

4. What are the last 4 digits in your cellphone number? 8270

5. What was the last thing you ate? Stretchy mac-n-cheese with bacon bits

6. Last person you hugged? of the kiddos at school, probably

7. How is the weather right now? Nice and cool :)

8. Who was the last person you talked to on the phone? Mom

9. The first thing you notice about the opposite sex? attitude/demeanor

10. Favorite type of food? pasta or chocolate

11. Do you want children? Yes

12. Hair color? Brown with highlights

13. Do you wear contacts? When I feel like it

14. Favorite holiday? Christmas...that's when I get to spend time with my family

15. Favorite Season? Spring

16. Have you ever cried over a love lost? Yes, but I'm over it now

17. Last Movie you watched? Love's Long Journey

18. What books are you reading? Montana (4 books in one)

19. Piercings? One in each ear

20. Favorite Movie? A Walk to Remember

21. Favorite college football team? none

22. What were you doing before filling this out? Thinking about what to blog about

25. Favorite animal? Dog

26. Favorite drink? Water, Dr. Pepper, hot chocolate

27. Favorite flower? Lilacs

28. Have you ever loved someone? Sure

29. Who would you like to see right now? My family and M.A.R.

30. What color are your bedroom walls? White

31. Have you ever fired a gun? Does paintball count?

32. Do you like to travel by plane? Sure

33. Right-handed or Left-handed? Right

34. If you could go to any place right now where would you go? Anywhere

35. Are you missing someone? Most definitely

36. Do you have a tattoo? Nope

37. Do you still watch cartoons on Saturday mornings? Nope

38. Are you hiding something from someone right now? Nope

39. Are you 18? Past that

40. What is the wallpaper on your cellphone? Uh...can you believe I actually have to look at it to answer this question...A purple rose

41. Are you afraid of the dark? Nope

42. Favorite hangout: my room

43. 3 things you can't live without? Bible, family/friends, chocolate

44. Favorite songs? Bow the Knee, Pilot Me, many others

45. What are you afraid of? Losing loved ones before they come to know Christ

46. Are you a giver or a taker? some of both

47. What are your nicknames? Nikki, Sis, Sister, Nic, Miss Cole, Cole, who-uh

48. What is your dad's middle name? Gene

49. What do you sleep in? pjs

50. Stuck on a deserted island, and can only bring one thing? Bible

51. Favorite TV commercial? None really

52. First thing you'll save in a fire? Whatever I can grab

53. What is your favorite color? Purple

54. What are the things you always bring with you? My purse with my wallet, Ipod, 3 sets of keys, and chapstick

55. What did you want to be when you were a kid? At first I wanted to be a singer and then I decided on being a teacher

56. What do you usually do when the alarm turns on? school I usher the kids outside and then call roll

57. What color is your bedsheet? coral

58. Who do you want to meet? I don't know

59. What do you think about before you go to bed? Lots of stuff

Sunday, November 02, 2008


I have to share this link and urge you to watch it. It is absolutely powerful. Keep sharing this. If you are a Christian and you aren't stirred, something is seriously wrong.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

The Adam Complex

So, the newshounds will dig up all the dirt they can on McCain and Palin, but moment something negative comes out about Obama (click here to read it), they automatically try to place the blame on the McCain/Palin or Bush administration.
"Information about the deportation case was disclosed and confirmed by two separate sources, one of them a federal law enforcement official. The information they made available is known to officials in the federal government, but the AP could not establish whether anyone at a political level in the Bush administration or in the McCain campaign had been involved in its release."

Nothing like a biased, democratic media for you. So, was it the Obama/Biden campaign that shared all the dirt they could with the media about McCain/Palin? Most likely, but they wouldn't tell you that.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Election '08

Just to clarify where I stand, I do not support Obama in the least. I think is a poor choice as a president and I certainly do not want him in that office.

Taken from the McCain site.


John McCain believes we must keep taxes low to reward hard work and create jobs for all Americans.

Barack Obama wants to "spread the wealth around" and is more interested in controlling who gets your piece of the pie than he is in growing the pie.

Economic Plan

John McCain has a comprehensive economic plan that will create millions of good American jobs, ensure our nation's energy security, get the government's budget and spending practices in order, and bring relief to American consumers

The Obama tax increase would come at the worst possible time for America, and especially for small businesses like the one Joe the Plumber dreams of owning. The small businesses Senator Obama would tax provide 16 million jobs in America. And a sudden tax hike for those businesses will kill jobs at a time when we need to be creating more jobs.


John McCain will break from the past to lead a great national campaign to put us on a course for energy independence. No problem is more urgent today than our dependence on foreign oil.

Barack Obama voted for the same policies that created the problem. He voted for the energy bill promoted by President Bush and Vice President Cheney, which gave even more breaks to the oil industry.

Health Care

John McCain will make health care more available, affordable and responsive to patients and he will give families more choices over their care.

Barack Obama's plan will harm employer coverage, continues the push toward government-run health care and will damage private coverage.

Reforming Washington

John McCain has a record of working to end Washington's stagnant, unproductive partisanship. He will end wasteful government spending and put the government back on the side of the American people.

The American people have not seen Barack Obama forsake partisanship for progress. In his short time in the Senate, Congressional Quarterly shows he voted with the Democrat Party 97 percent of the time.

Government Spending

John McCain is committed to and has long fought for restoring fiscal discipline by eliminating wasteful government spending. Out of control spending has resulted in a weaker dollar, raising the cost of groceries and gas and killing jobs. John McCain will rein in federal spending to help our families in tough economic times.

Barack Obama plans to increase spending by nearly a trillion dollars. Already in three short years in the Senate, he has requested nearly a billion dollars in pork projects for his state and has been an eager participant in this corrupt system.


John McCain will shake up failed school bureaucracies with competition, empower parents with choice, remove barriers to qualified instructors, attract and reward good teachers.

Barack Obama wants our schools to answer to unions and entrenched bureaucracies.


John McCain had the judgment to understand that America's strategy in Iraq was failing and the courage to call for a dramatic change. That strategy is now working, and America is succeeding in Iraq

Barack Obama opposed the new strategy and predicted wrongly that it would fail. He voted to deny critical funds to our men and women fighting in Iraq.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Election '08

I am by no means a political junkie. I grew up in a family that did not vote (at least, not that I remember) and the stance was more with the Independent party. While in college, I did get involved in the elections as a poll book holder and a sign holder. I can say that I am a conservative.

When it comes to the elections this year, wow, what a time to pray for the nation! So many people are being steered in the wrong direction.

If you want to be told where your child can attend school, vote Obama.
If you want your kindergartener to learn about sex education and alternative lifestyles, vote Obama.
If you want an increase in federal income taxes, vote Obama.
If you want someone to appoint Supreme Court judges that have a changing interpretation of the Constitution, vote Obama.
If you want further restrictions on the right to bear arms, vote Obama.
If you want someone that supports public funding of abortions and not notifying the parents of a minor about having an abortion and not giving health care for survivors of abortions, vote Obama.
If you want sodomites to be considered a recognized minority, vote Obama.
If you want public funding for art that is pornographic or anti-religious, vote Obama.

Really, if you want a socialist change, vote Obama. I know I'm not.

Check this link out.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

VBC Ensemble at Hanover

The VBC Ensemble sang for the first time in a church service tonight. It was a wonderful experience. Mr. Walton said that the US Marine Corps motto is Semper Fidelis, meaning "always faithful." He then went on to say that the Christian's motto should be Semper Gumby, meaning "always flexible." We needed to be tonight. Brooke was out of town (she the accompanist) but came back this afternoon. Wendy was already going to be the accompanist for the evening. With me having bronchitis, my voice is nowhere close to being back 100% so I was not able to sing at all with the group, but Brooke sang in my place. I was the official page turner for the evening (well, Adam said I paged the!). Everything still worked out well. We went to Panera for dinner after the service and had a great time there as well.

The VBC Ensemble
(Mr. Walton, Adam, Ashley, Brooke, Hope, Nicole)

Tim, Adam, and Ashley


The girls




Random pic of me

Hope, Brooke, and our cute little buddy watching the inchworm special olympics
(you had to be there to understand)

Hope and Brooke

Random pic of Hope

Staged random pic

Brooke and our little buddy

Random pic of Brooke

Ashley, Hope, and Brooke

Ahsley attacking Hope and Brooke...who knows!

Random pic of Ashley

Ahsley and Brooke

Ahsley and Adam

Nice one, Ashley!



Simply Trusting (Listening CD)
You can also get Adam's CD through Bible Truth Music
Great stuff!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Last weekend, I was able to go to MD to visit one of my former college roomies. I had a wonderful time! The change of scenery and people was very welcome and refreshing. Jen and I caught up and watched The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants on Friday night (a family from the school was able to drop me off at the Metro station) after she picked me up. Then, we went to visitation devotions before heading off to Wal-Mart so Jen could finish an errand. Of, by the way, the chicken parmasean from Pizza Hut is EXCELLENT! Before we went to the corn field maze, we spent a couple hours at a mall and had lunch there. The maze was great! I had never been to one before. It took us almost two hours to find our way out! I stole all these pictures from Jen since I didn't have my camera with me for this trip.
I certainly enjoyed my mini-but-much-needed-vacation. The only thing is, I came back sick and it turned into bronchitis. Tomorrow at school, we have our fundraiser incentive of the teacher dunk tank. My students are totally pumped about dunking me. I told them it wouldn't happen becasue they all can not throw and that the'll miss the target completely. :) I'm planning on bringing my swim cap and goggles for a special effect.


Thomas and Annie (and he has a pumpkin under his shirt)

Thomas and Annie again
Sherry with her maglight
Sherry (Jen's sister..she also went to Fairhaven)

Sam (or Rockstar, Mr. Mom, or James Dean depending on Jen's!)

Nadia and I on the hayride

Me in the corn maze

Josh (or as Random Person as Jen called him), Dan, and Sam

On the hayride

A few group shots :)

One of those candid "gotcha" shots of Dan

Dan and Sam

Dan and I not too long after we arrived at the River Valley Ranch Corn Maze

An 8 months pregnant Annie and I

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sometimes, I really dislike being a female. Mainly, it has to do with emotions. I can't stand feeling excited, confused, upset, frustrated, mad, depressed, alone, and crowded all at the same time. I wish other things were clear-cut and easy to understand. Well, one situation in particular, anyway.

So I had CPR training Saturday. I was not happy about it being scheduled at the last minute and take away my only day to get something done on top of that. My hand hurts from all the compression practice we had to do. The class took about 2 hours since we spent 2 hours taking the first aid portion online. This is the second time I have taken a CPR class and while I'm glad I know how to do, I'm even more glad I've never had to use it on any one.

College midterms are coming up as well as the school's first quarter. I'm looking forward to going to the teacher's convention next month. I get to room with Kammie! That'll be fun!

Nessa and Jay came down for a visit Saturday afternoon. We had a good time and didn't spend too much money. We all had SOBE's and SlimJims for our movie snacks. We made Jay watch two chick flicks. lol

My class is going to drive me up the wall this year. I feel so bad for having such a short fuse, but these kids just don't listen! I am trying to work on my response to them and Lord willing, it will get better as I let Him work through me.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Well, I got a change of pace. I'm now on crutches with a sprained ankle. Go figure! LOL! The Lord sure does have a sense of humor.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Living? Check.
Breathing? Most of the time, check.
Family? Check.
Friends? Check.
Job? Check, check, and check.

I know I am blessed with what I have, but why do I feel so "blah" these days? This school year is really pulling a number on me. This week was ok with the kids, but I know I never want to have another class like this. Unfortunately, next year's is no better...perhaps worse. I feel like all I ever do is work related stuff. Lesson plans take FOREVER to do (glad I'm now three...technically two...weeks ahead), breaks are joke, aides are few, days are long, and pay is minimal. I hate living paycheck to paycheck, but the Lord has not failed me (and He never will). Oh, not to mention I practically LIVE at the church or in my classroom. I am there Sunday though Saturday for hours.

My family seems to be getting it together (generally speaking), but there are plenty of problems. Just found out that Mom, Dad, and AJ may not be able to make it out to Nessa's for Thanksgiving. I'll only make if Nessa picks me up (since my car has issues...nothing out of the norm there). Nessa, her boyfriend, and I are planning to drive up to MI for Christmas (since none of can afford to fly). That'll be interesting. Not sure if I'll be able to make it a week without visiting the ER at least once while we're there. Then again, it wouldn't be a normal visit home without not being able to breathe and creating some fun in the ER with the crazy stuff Nessa and I do to lighten up the moment. We have had hospital staff tell us to quiet down (shocker, right?).

I think I'm in need of a change. Just not sure with what to change, though. Life's not bad here, but...well, I don't know.

I want to go on a long trip away from here. California sounds good. I'd love to hang out with Mimi again. Maybe even go see Glenn and Katie. I'd love to see Carol before she and Adam head off to Mongolia. I'd love to visit my home church and see those who have influenced my life for the best. I miss so many people right now. Yes, I've made friends here, but I still feel disconnected. That could also be my fault. Maybe getting older does that to a person.


Thursday, October 02, 2008

Just thought I'd share this with you. I found it interesting.
I fall under the young, unmarried woman portion, but I'm certainly NOT voting for Obama. NOBAMA '08!

You should also see this very disturbing video. I don't know how to post a video here, so just click the link.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

lia sophia party!

Come one, come all! I'm hosting a lia sophia party and you're invited to attend!

Not only am I hosting a party at my house, I'm also hosting one online! You don't even have to leave your house to partake in these wonderful deals.

Did you know, for every two items you purchase at regular price, you can get your third item for half price? Make it your HIGHEST priced item! Another perk is the lifetime replacement guarantee. If you are not satisfied with the quality of the purchase, you can have it replaced as long as you own the piece.

Here's what you need to do:

1. Go HERE

2. Click on "Our Jewelry"

3. Choose a catalog to browse (I like the Fall/Winter 2008 catalog)

4. See the "How to purchase?" link? Click that.

5. Now, you will need to enter my name (Nicole Stiers) in those little boxes since I am your hostess :)

6. Now you will be taken back to the catalog so you can make your selections

Simple enough?

Keep in mind that Christmas is around the corner and who doesn't like a pretty piece of jewelry to brighten up their wardrobe?

Happy shopping!