Monday, January 28, 2008

The Sickness Has Passed (almost)

The update from the doctor's appt Friday and the weekend I lost.

Thursday. I ended up staying home because I just wasn't "feeling right." All afternoon, I needed to take a nap because I was so tired. And couldn't do it. So, Thursday's night class was out too. Good thing because I was slowly going downhill and couldn't fight it.

Friday. I woke up with a sore throat, itchy ears, cough that would wake the dead, and headache. At that point, I hadn't really checked my temp but knew I was running a fever. Cassi was still coughing but much better than you bought with the 102 fevers. We went to the doctor in the afternoon. This also meant no internship on Friday. I couldn't move and couldn't speak.

Bottom line. We both have a virus. Pretty much. Keep giving Cassi the Motrin for fever and the cough syrup to help supress the cough. The assistant checked my temp. I was 102.7 and she stopped. I even told her that I haven't had a fever like that in YEARS. Actually, when I get sick, even this sick, my temperature always goes down. The doctor could tell how I was hurting when I coughed. She gave me cough syrup with codeine. We went and filled it and went home.

Let me just say, Dad ROCKS! I called Rob to tell him what happened. I had all I could do to get us home; I felt to bad. Rob had to work and couldn't take us. I called Dad when I got home. He first said he would come get Cassi Saturday morning for sleep over. Then, he called back and said he could come get her Friday night.

As they were leaving, I asked them to lock the door on the way out. (forgot) I was unable to get up from the recliner to lock the door. All the lights were on in my living room. The front door was unlocked. I don't like the doors to be unlocked, especially when I'm alone.

I didn't get up to turn off lights and lock the door until 11pm. And, I slept pretty much from 6:30 Friday night until Sunday morning. In the recliner.

By Sunday morning, my fever finally broke. I started to feel better, just mainly stuffed and coughing. The first things I did Sunday morning (and does this sound familiar) dishes, laundry, garbage.

Cassi was off Monday and Rob kept her as he was off work. I went to my internship and class. I was so glad to be out of the house and feeling SO MUCH BETTER.

But, now, I'm still dealing with a sore throat, coughing, and a stuff nose.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

P.S. Cassi is still coughing too but better.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Small Blog Entries

OK. Because so much is going on in my life (and our lives) right now, I'm working to write smaller blog entries. I want you to be able to read what you want (even parts of everything). Sometimes the posts can be long. Right now, I've got 6 other entries that will go in below this entry.

Note to self: make sure I've got a small notepad on hand at ALL times! Ideas are bombarding me from everywhere now.

Sicky note: We're all home sick. I know a few girls in my classes have been out sick and came back still sick. Good note is, it's a weekend for me. I'll make up my internship hours next week with being there 3 days. As it stands, I'll take Cassi and myself to see the doctor tomorrow. My throat is REALLY sore right now, coughing and chest stress.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

P.S. Even though I'm sick, I'm still working on homework for classes!

Senior Survey Better

Post written on 2/2/2008!

It is DEFINITELY going better. Because I seem to be asking all of the right questions. When we started our first reading assignment, I emailed the professor. I said to her that I understand there's two different ways to read something. The first is to read for the pleasure of reading. The second is to read with the intention of understanding why it was written. So, my main question to her was what types of questions should I be thinking about when I'm reading, general questions that I could use for all reading.

She apologized for not getting back to me as my email went to her spam. But, I had asked a very responsible question. I told her that was fine about not replying because my question had merit for the whole group.

And, up to now, it appears that I have taken lots of responsibility to ask questions that the whole group is probably thinking.

So, this class is going 100% better than I thought.

Then, I got sick. But, a nice classmate allowed me to take her notes home. Yeah! I was able to scan them in and have them for our first test. Because the test is open book/open notes, any notes I can get for the test will just help me more.

And, we're already thinking about our papers. We've got a smaller one due on the 19th, about 5 pages. This paper can be the jumping off point for the MAJOR project. I already know how I want to present my project, in costume!

OK. That's it for now. I've got lots of reading to do for this class for Tuesday. Want to get it done this weekend.

Lots of love,
8^ )


Written on 2/2/2008!

The internship is going AWESOME! I wish I can find a boss as good as Tina. The internship is very flexible. I've got to work 10 hours a week. As it stands, I'm scheduled on Monday's and Wednesday's for 5 hours each. If I have to leave early or just don't get my 5 hours in, I can make up the extra time on Friday's.

This was how my job was the last year before I was laid off. As long as I had my 40 hours a week, my boss didn't care when I worked, knowing that programmers keep weird hours.

Anyway, I've completed my first report. It was a weird research project, but allowed me to really look at the information from the foundations. Then, I wrote up the report, giving my suggestions for foundations and funding options for this project. Very easy, but detailed. I'll post my findings on my online writing portfolio soon.

My next project is the Research News newsletter for February. I should have the majority of it together this week.

That is all!

Lots of love,
8^ )

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Follow-up to Last Post's Comment

Cassi ended up being sick today. Last night, when I got to Pa's, she was in jammies and ready to come home. Then, all of a sudden, she was on the pot. At the same time, her face was nasty flush red and her lips were red.

In 2-words, MINI ME!

When I was growing up, mom knew when I was faking because when I was REALLY sick, my lips looked like I had fire engine red lip stick on.

So, after deliberating between Dad and Rob (through text), Dad decided to take off work and keep her at his house. Today, I was downtown in Cleveland all day. My internship is for 5 hours, but, today I was there until 3. With her there and not home, I was able to stay for my break and go to class. This meant I was in Cleveland until after 6 pm. I haven't done long days like this in YEARS!

But, last night, Cassi was very sad and CRIED. First, she was upset because she was going to Dan's house. Dan said she could come over and play with Alexis. Then, I told her she could go roller skating Sunday (new fun thing to do on weekends and where I can get homework done at the same time). She was worried, even fretting that she would not be well to go. She listened to how I wouldn't make that decision until Friday. If she was still sick, she probably wouldn't go. Finally, she was utterly distraught that her teachers wouldn't know that she was sick. I told her I would call Mrs. Carey (secretary in office) who would tell her teachers she was sick.

After all that crying, fretting, and despair, she was fine with staying at Pa's. Then, she wanted to play, with her fever and all.

This morning, I told Mrs. Carey that I just HAD to call. She laughed and said that she would make sure her teachers knew she would be out.

As it stands at this point, she's feeling better but coughing. Rob has an appointment with the eye doctor in the am. We will determine if she is better to go. If not, she'll just have to stay home again. But, in the afternoon, she will go to Pa's as I have class from 6-8 pm.

It was just so hilarious to see her so worried. Once all her worries were handled, she was fine. OK, I'll stay.

And, as the comment said, she talked to Aunt 'Re today. With 'Re's schedule and mine being so screwy, it's been hard to get time for Cassi to talk with her. I've even had trouble finding time to even text. (sad face indeed)

So, I will work to make sure there's time for all of us to chat!

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

Internship Research and Findings...

Having nothing to do with my research, I came across an awesome poem. I know this specifically deals with early childhood education, but I like it. I think you will too.

Written by Naomi Drew (1987)

I Am an Individual

I am an individual.
I have dignity and worth.
I am unique.
I deserve respect and I respect others.
I am part of the human family.
I have something special to offer the world.
I am committed to a peaceful world for all of us.
I make a difference, and so do you.
I can accomplish whatever I set out to do, and so can you.
I am the key to peace.

It's too bad more people can't live by these words. I believe this everyday, especially because of Cassi.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

Friday, January 18, 2008

My Grandmother MUST Be Telling Me Something

I know you guys recall that I've talked about dreams of my grandmother. This grandmother is my dad's mom. When we were growing up, Dad would take Marie and I to Massachusetts to visit her. At that time, on Sunday's of the visit, family would show up "out of the woodwork." Each time, there would be cousins I hadn't seen the last time.

Anyway, over the past few years, I've had a few dreams about going to her house. I do recall seeing her once or twice. This dream was definitely the "after" dream. She passed away when I was in high school, which was WAY too long ago.

But, this dream starts out here in Ohio, with Mom and Cassi taking a road trip to her house. Basically, I remember talking about how to get there and we decided across Rt. 90, which takes you to the northern parts of PA.

Then, we got there.

The house looked about the same. We got to go inside because the family living there allowed us in. The rooms still looked the same except for a fridge in the front parlor. For those of you who don't know, the term parlor in New England is the same as the formal living room. The biggest change to me was the kitchen. I remember the kitchen being HUGE. As a footprint of the house, the kitchen was dead in the middle of the first floor, with the parlor in front and a family room flanking the back. Basically the house was divided into three downstairs. As I'm walking around, I notice that all of the door fronts have been glazed over with a black laminate or plastic type covering. But, everything again is still where it was when we were growing up.

I look out the window. The house had a garage, but down the hill and behind the house. Out this window, you're able to see a drive that 4 or 5 cars can park. I see what looks like a REALLY old car. The first person I think of is my step grandpa Freddie. Uh, oh! I thought he would have died by now! The family says the house was converted into a multi-family property and he lives downstairs, which figures because he loved being in the garage when we visited.

So, we try to make sure he doesn't see us. The family who lives there leaves the kitchen. I climb up onto the counter that shoots out from the stove area. Above the stove are cabinets. I open the cabinets to find all of these boxes of recipes. OH, MY, Gosh! These are the recipe boxes that are holding all my grandmother's recipes! I so try to snatch them. But, as soon as I find them, the family comes walking back in as I quickly get down from the counter.

I can't remember if I take one of the boxes, but I feel as if in my dream that I do. What the recipes were? Couldn't tell you at all. But, it was IMPORTANT that I get those boxes.

I then look out the window over the sink and see a lake has formed down the hill. I was told by the family the city turned the area into a lake. This was where the drive was to get to that garage. I go outside and down the back to see an apartment of sorts where the garage used to be. I also see the lake and how you can't drive to where the garage was either.

Then, I wake up from my dream. Something is definitely telling me I need to visit there. Maybe after my graduation and such, I'll take the trip.

I had this dream yesterday morning and still remember it now.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A Funny Story...

As this JUST happened, I thought I would share.

Since Rob is working this evening, I told Cassi she could sleep with me. She came out and asked if she could have a snack of mini marshmallows. Sure, a small snack before bed.

I walked in with the mini's and she says to me, "Hi, marsh-mom!"

OK, so my kid decided she was going to call me marshmallows! I guess that's not a bad nickname since I'm kinda squeeshy and soft in the middle.

Lots of love,
8^ )

Film Screening Journal

OK. You guys will have to bear with me this semester. As part of my Imaging Africa class, I have to keep a movie journal. We will be screening movies in class and writing a journal. The professor doesn't want us to turn in an electronic journal. He just doesn't understand; my thoughts run wild and my hands on a computer work faster than a pen and paper.

So, I am going to use this blog to help with the notes from the movies. This is what I need to write about:

Title of film, Director, Main Characters, General Outline

Then, there's 5 questions I have to answer. Each writing will be a few pages in my journal. Ugh!


1. What is your reaction to the content of the film?
2. What would you change in the film's content?
3. Iconography (use of symbols)
4. Ideology (collection of ideas)
5. Indigenous (maintaining values of the film's society)

OK. That's it for now. Gotta get ready for school.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Why are you taking English?

This was what my professor asked me today. First, Rob had to drive me to school today. He's been off and being my chauffeur to class. Because my financial aid got screwed up this semester, I have been unable as of yet to pay for my parking. Unlike less urban colleges, my college is in the middle of the city of Cleveland. My parking has been costing me $141 every semester. And, this is still no guarantee that parking in available when I need it. Many times I have to sit and wait for someone to leave so I can park and go to class. Lately, though, this has not been a major issue.

But, for today, Rob drove me to school so I would not have to pay an exorbitant amount of money to park. (I'll have to pay tomorrow and Thursday.) But, today was a bad day for driving with the amount of snow that happened to come down since 4am this morning.

Today, specifically this morning, is my English Senior Survey class. This class is MANDATORY for graduation as an English major. AND, this is the only section being offered this semester. This class will be doing literary analysis on Medieval Pilgrimage.

OK. This will be my challenge course. AND, this is the first semester that I've had to do any literary analysis with readings other than poetry. But, she reads through the syllabus. Something I can do on my own. She talks about what's going to be due this semester: 1 5-page paper in about a month, 2 exams, 1 15-page research paper and presentation, and 1 final. Oh, and by the way, the final is on a Thursday morning from 8:30am - 10:30am. I will HAVE to have someone available to take Cassi to school that day as I will have to come to school at 7:30 in the morning.

She gets done with class in 30 minutes (out of a 2 hour class period). Good thing Rob didn't go to mom's to wait until class was done because it would have been a waste. Prior to leaving, I gave the professor a more direct email address. So far, all professors have asked to email to reach them the best. So, I mention to her that this class will be a challenge for me as this is the first real literary analysis class I'm in. She asks me what my major is which I tell her English. She asks me why am I pursuing an English degree? I told her to get back into Technical Writing where I was before coming back to school.

I know there are a lot of arguments floating around about why people study English. Every time I get asked what I am pursuing, I'm constantly getting people to say, "So, are you going to teach?" Just because I'm getting my degree in English doesn't mean I want to teach. Nor does it mean I want to pursue my Master's Degree (a goal of taking this class). It also doesn't mean that literature is my life and goal is analysis of such.

There are other pursuits that English fits right in. So, let me just say, I will definitely have trouble with this class because of this professor. But, who knows, maybe I'll do better than I think because of the challenge.

The positives to today:

1. I was recognized as being on the Dean's List for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for my GPA. At first I wondered, why was I all of a sudden recognized when I was getting above a 3.25 every semester since I started. Then, I realized, this was the first semester I had 12 credit hours. Makes a difference. OK. Cool for me. I got a 4.0.

2. My Tuesday night class will be easy and I'll get an A for sure. It's Feature Writing where my goal for the semester is to decide what I want to write about, research it and magazines I could submit it to, write it (3 versions with revisions), and then submit it for publishing. Who knows? I could have it published in a magazine that would want me to do more writing.

So, it's about 9:15pm now. I'm getting ready for bed. Because of this financial aid thing, I can't go to my internship tomorrow. Called Tina. She's cool about the whole thing. Because it's flexible, I can start next Wednesday. I'll have my refund check for sure and get my parking paid for (and my other bills waiting in the wings).

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

P.S. Sorry I had to vent. Got a headache right now, probably from my hair. It's REALLY getting heavy.

A Little Fodder To Ponder...

Because I'm very DISGRUNTLED right now about school and Financial Aid specifically, here's a little fodder to think about. I got this from mom as an email forward.

This speaks for itself!!!!!

A Washington , DC , airport ticket agent offers some examples of why our country is in trouble!

1. I had a New Hampshire Congresswoman ask for an aisle seat so that her hair wouldn't get messed up by being near the window. (On an Airplane!)

2. I got a call from a candidate's staffer, who wanted to go to Cape Town. I started to explain the length of the flight and the passport information. Then she interrupted me with, "I'm not trying to make you look stupid, but Cape Town is in Massachusetts." Without trying to make her look stupid, I calmly explained, "Cape Cod is in Massachusetts; Cape Town is in Africa."
Her response - click.

3. A senior Vermont Congressman called, furious about a Florida package we did. I asked what was wrong with the vacation in Orlando . He said he was expecting an ocean-view room. I tried to explain that's not possible, since Orlando is in the middle of the state. He replied, "Don't lie to me. I looked on the map and Florida is a very thin state!" (OMG)

4. I got a call from a lawmaker's wife who asked, "Is it possible to see England from Canada?" I said, "No." She said, "But they look so close on the map." (OMG, again!)

5. An aide for a cabinet member once called and asked if he could rent a car in Dallas. When I pulled up the reservation, I noticed he had only a 1-hour layover in Dallas. When I asked him why he wanted to rent a car he said, "I heard Dallas was a big airport, and we will need a car to drive between gates to save time." (Aghhhh!!)

6. An Illinois Congresswoman called last week. She needed to know how it was possible that her flight from Detroit left at 8:30 am and got to Chicago at 8:33 am. I explained that Michigan was an hour ahead of Illinois, but she couldn't understand the concept of time zones. Finally, I told her the plane went fast, and she bought that.

7. A New York lawmaker called and asked, "Do airlines put your physical description on your bag so they know whose luggage belongs to whom?" I said, "No, why do you ask?" She replied, "Well, when I checked in with the airline, they put a tag on my luggage that said 'FAT,' and I'm overweight I think that's very rude!" After putting her on hold for a minute while I looked into it (I was laughing). I came back and explained the city code for Fresno, CA is 'FAT' - (Fresno Air Terminal), and the airline was just putting a destination tag on her luggage.

8. A Senator's aide called to inquire about a trip package to Hawaii. After going over all the cost info, she asked, "Would it be cheaper to fly to California, and then take the train to Hawaii?"

9. I just got off the phone with a freshman Congressman who asked, "How do I know which plane to get on?" I asked him what exactly he meant, to which he replied, "I was told my flight number is 823, but none of these planes have numbers on them."

10. A lady Senator called and said, "I need to fly to Pepsi-Cola, Florida. Do I have to get on one of those little computer planes?" I asked if she meant fly to Pensacola, Florida on a commuter plane. She said, "Yeah, whatever, smarty!"

11. A senior Senator called and had a question about the documents he needed in order to fly to China. After a lengthy discussion about passports, I reminded him that he needed a visa. "Oh, no I don't. I've been to China many times and never had to have one of those." I double checked and sure enough, his stay required a visa. When I told him this he said, "Look, I've been to China four times and every time they have accepted my American Express!"

12. A New Mexico Congresswoman called to make reservations, "I want to go from Chicago to Rhino, New York." I was at a loss for words. Finally, I said, "Are you sure that's the name of the town?" "Yes, what flights do you have?" replied the lady. After some searching, I came back with, "I'm sorry, ma'am, I've looked up every airport code in the country and can't find a Rhino anywhere." The lady retorted, "Oh, don't be silly! Everyone knows where it is. Check your map!" So I scoured a map of the state of New York and finally offered, "You don't mean Buffalo, do you?" The reply? "Whatever! I knew it was a big animal."

Now you know why the Government is in the shape that it's in!

8^ (

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Vacation is Coming to an End...

I think my body is prepping me for the next 16 weeks. This week, I've been REALLY tired. In preparation of being tired, my body helped with bringing me my monthly "non" friend, which was REALLY bad this week. It started Friday with LOTS of sleep. If I wasn't down the street at Cassi's school, I was home sleeping. Once Cassi got home and I got Rob off to work, I was again back in bed. Saturday morning, after Rob came home from work, I got up, went out to the living room, sat on the recliner, and proceeded to go back to sleep until 12:30 pm.

I've also enjoyed a few migraines this week.

Rob and I went to CSU Monday morning and picked up my books. Good thing I went early. First, there was hardly anyone there buying books yet. Second, they had to manually put my information into the computer to allow me to buy my books with my scholarship. So far, my book cost is at $203. I'm still working on getting my other book, which is $125 by itself. We'll see. It would be a GREAT reference book once I'm done school.

But, this week has also been very productive for me. As you "read" me mention the other day, I've been posting stuff onto my online store. Since I decided my 4 classes (3 plus internship) was enough for me this semester, I would not do any craft shows and work on posting my products (and making new) for my online store. This week, I added the following: 2 items in chore charts under the main headings and tea bag envelopes in categories Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, Easter, and Father's Day. Mother's Day should be updated tomorrow. As it stands right now, I've got over 400 products in the tea bag envelopes products alone. And, if you're wondering, yes, I designed each and every envelope.

A lot of stuff has been going on around here. Not really wanting to talk about them, or give these people their fame, I'll just say in short: 1. the bother in law has been arrested again and 2. I REALLY wish I could kick my step daughter in the ass!

OK. Enough said!

Cassi is now a tooth-less. Monday morning, she had daddy help her remove the tooth still hanging by a thread (small blood vessel). Daddy pulled it and she bawled! Because of that little blood vessel, she bled some. But that tooth REALLY needed to come out. More and more, she's a mini-me. Her teeth are taking forever to fall out. This tooth was actually bent sideways in her mouth. But, the tooth fairy brought her $2 for the tooth.

Tuesday, she went out with Dan and Alexis. Dan bought her a Build-a-Bear bear. The bear is light blue and her name is "Blue." She is wearing an angel's outfit. Now, all she talks about is getting more clothes for Blue from the Build-A-Bear Workshop. Oh, Joy! The bear and what she got for her gift was $57! I can't believe how expensive it is for this store. But, for those of you who know Cleveland, this store lives in the mall in Strongsville! Very swanky and VERY expensive.

And, you've heard about our beauty trip. That was on Monday. I'll post a new photo as soon as I take one. She looks adorable.

But, she's not the only one that will be sporting a new do. Next week, I'm planning on getting my hair cut. Because I had a perm last March, I'm working on getting all the hair still with curls cut off. My hair is EXCEPTIONALLY long now, longer than it has ever been. I'm going to cut it and see how it goes to grow it all straight. And, I'm planning on having it thinned again.

OK. It's almost 11 pm now. I've got to get to bed. I didn't get a chance to watch Ugly Betty tonight when it came on. Company came over. So, I'll watch it before bed.

Lots of love,
8^ )

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


Yep. Here's my public service announcement for the day!

After watching a commercial on TV this evening, I was informed about a Web site called I'm currently looking at it right now.

If you have been wanting to volunteer but don't know if you can because of time or other commitments, this Web site will allow you the ability to find a volunteer situation that fits your time and lifestyle.

I would like to find a volunteer project to work with Cassi. We'll be able to do stuff together, to help other people.

That's it for tonight. I'm still putting more products out on my store. Since I'm not participating in craft shows this Spring, I'm going to put as much on my store as possible (and design new stuff at the same time).

Lots of love for now,
8^ )

Monday, January 07, 2008


Yes, I know this is yet another post about graduation. I've been looking on the CSU Web site concerning information about graduation.

This semester graduation is scheduled for May 10, Saturday. Marie, please make sure you and Joe are available and can come. As it stands right now, I'm allowed 6 tickets for graduation. I will be planning on asking for 4 extra (cause I want VP and hubby to come too).

VP, if you can afford to come (with hubby of course), I would love to have you come, visit and come to graduation. If you cannot because of money, I completely understand. We'll talk more as the semester comes along.

But, I've been looking at grad levels and honors (cause I'm so neurotic). But, if I graduate with at least a 3.3, I'll graduate Cum Laude. As it stands, I've got a 3.66 GPA. This level would allow me to graduate with a Manga Cum Laude! My only concern is the Senior Survey. The other classes, I know I'll get A's in.

OK. That's it for now. Still looking at stuff for graduation so I know when I go to order my gown, etc.

Lots of love,
8^ )

Saturday, January 05, 2008

New Year's Resolutions...

Yep, like everyone else, I've got a few New Year's Resolutions! Here we go:

1. Add more stuff to my online store.
2. Get another 4.0 this semester.
3. Get that KILLER job. I will start applying for jobs this month as I am now within the 4 month time line before graduation.
4. Take Cassi roller skating more often (she really enjoys it).
5. Try roller skating again with Cassi.
6. Be more active (no, I'm just not active enough).
7. Keep my house REALLY clean, food cooked, etc.
8. Learn to say "No" when I'm too busy.
9. Other stuff as it comes.

So, as you're all probably wondering, I don't have a resolution to lose weight. Well, first, I figure since I'll probably break a resolution like that, I won't make one. However, if I can do numbers 5 and 6, it would help me get more in shape. Part of the more active is that I would like to go dancing more when I can.

With that, I'll close for now. I've got some stuff to do. Yep, it's Saturday night, almost 10pm, and I'm going to wash a load of laundry. I wasn't feeling well yesterday and today and did LOTS of sleeping (when Cassi wasn't here). So, I'm still awake for now.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )

Thursday, January 03, 2008


These photos were taken on 12/20 before her Christmas concert. The above picture shows her full dress. But this second picture really shows her face, which is a Mini-Me!

Lots of love,
8^ )

Things Past, Present, and Future

We had a very good holiday. Cassi was disappointed, though. The only thing she wanted for Christmas from Santa was a pogo stick. She was disappointed Santa didn't bring it. I explained how Santa felt since she couldn't use it inside cause of space issues and couldn't use it outside because of the cold, it would be better for mom and dad to get it once spring and summer arrive. I told her I agreed with Santa. We would revisit the issue when the weather got better.

Other than that, Christmas was just another day here. We went to mom's because our dining room table is being refinished. It will probably take until summer to get finished but that's okay. As much as I'm busy, Rob is even busier. He's involved with his lodge meetings, 2 classes and helping take care of Cassi while I'm at school when she doesn't go to Pa's.

She spent the weekend with them until Christmas Eve. Then, she came home for overnight. Christmas Day, we all went back to Pa's. She proceeded to stay until the 29th. She came home for her birthday. Our baby turned 8 on the 30th. (Yes, I didn't put a post out here to celebrate her birthday!) We had 2 friends over. The local roller skating rink gave out free passes to skate during break. Cassi and Alexis (who went) both had roller skates. She made a new friend. One of the nurses Rob works with has 2 girls. They came along too. I had 1 free pass and paid for her skates. Madison is her name. Her sister Cheyenne also came. Wendy is mom. Mom paid for herself and daughter Cheyenne. They all had a good time. I don't skate for anything. Have had too many problems with dizzy spells and vertigo (which I still believe is related to the fact that I'm losing my hearing, but that's another story).

While they were skating, I got to take some pictures. Rob zipped over to the local store to buy a small cake for after skating. Cassi had Madison and Alexis spend the night. They ate grilled cheese and fries. Then cake, then gummy life savers, then more cake. I have one of those elevated queen size air mattresses. At first, Cassi was on the couch with the other 2 girls laying normally. After Rob and I went to bed (and Rob zonked), I had to shush the girls to sleep. Come to find out, they rotated the other way on the bed and all 3 girls were couped up together on the mattress. A sight indeed! By morning, Alexis was in the dead center of the bed with the 2 other girls huddled at the end of the mattress. It's no wonder someone didn't fall off. But, I was awake until well after midnight. Come 7:30 the next morning, they were up. They ate pancakes for breakfast. Madison left about noon. But, Alexis and Cassi ate mac & cheese. Then, Alexis went home.

I hadn't ever been so TIRED!

After I got up and was "awake," Rob decided it was time to put up new smoke detectors (one decided to go off tonight when I made dindin). Plus, we'd been planning on moving around the bedroom. We hauled out 3 bags of CRAP! Some of the stuff was from the goods Rob got for Christmas. He finally went through his clothes and discarded the ones that really needed to go.

Then, we had to go to Lowe's. My cedar chest (the one I've had for almost 12 years now), moved from the bedroom to living room. I couldn't believe how open the space became from this small move. But, to move it, we needed felt pads for under the feet. No way was the chest going on the new hard wood floors without pads. Then, we stopped at Giant Eagle for snacks for the evening.

But, New Year's Eve. I napped so I would be awake for the ball drop. Well, Marie was an AWESOME sister. She bought us the Star Wars Lego's games for PS2. Rob and I are hooked on the Star Wars II and are currently on chapter 6 of Episode 4 (original Star Wars). I laugh every time I see Princess Leia as a Lego figure. And the way they have them TALK (without really talking).

Well, we played News Year's Eve. We missed the ball drop by 2 minutes that's how hooked we are on this game. And, Cassi is even more so now. I'm only hooked when I can play with Rob as a team. Cassi likes to play by herself. We have a game saved and she has her own.

We ended up not going to bed until 3:30 am (Cassi at 2am) and weren't up New Year's Day until almost noon. As soon as I got up, I was in the kitchen baking. We were going to Rob's friend's house in Nova, which is about an hour away. This is Wendy from work. Her and her husband, Allen, invited us to dinner at their place. They are so nice. I can't believe how far she lives and drives to Cleveland to go to work. She lives in Ashland County (Amish country). From my house it is about a 45-60 minute drive south west and we live 30-40 minutes from Downtown Cleveland. So, you can see why I say the distance.

The drive was slow as it was snowing and REALLY slow on the way back. Marie, DON'T BLAB TO DAD! You know how he is with bad weather and us driving in it. We were good. We had the station wagon that has been driving than the Focus because the center of gravity is lower to the ground. Although, we did see one nasty accident on the way home.

Yesterday, we also got up REALLY late. We went to Rob's school to pick up his books and had to go to JC Penney to exchange a clothing outfit. Rob's mother decides she's going to buy an outfit for Cassi for her birthday. We get it. It's too small. Not once has she called and asked what size does Cassi wear. Oh, yeah. That's right, she asked a year ago! Well, the last time I remember her asking, Cassi was wearing size 7 pants. She is now wearing a 10-12 pants. So, of course, the outfit doesn't fit.

She's Mini-Me! I'll post pics from the holiday concert she had in a few. She looks EXACTLY like me. And after we talk to her on the phone, she asks me what is Cassi's favorite color. Being that Cassi had red hair, what color. The outfit was brown, which isn't bad and actually looked nice on her. Her favorite colors are PINK and RED! So, the new outfit we got was red. OK. Now, I don't shop at JC Penney for ANY REASON. The price are OUTRAGEOUS! The tags were still on the original suit, which was good. Rob's mom said she paid 50% for the pieces. But, the jacket alone was $25 at full price. I still wouldn't have paid 50% of that price. But, we were able to make an exchange without any money exchanging hands. Good for us. Then, we left.


But, I'm in my last week before going back to school. I can't believe this is FINALLY it!

OK. I'm going to close for now.

Lots of love to all,
8^ )