Monday, August 31, 2009

One of the Reasons I Really Want to Speak Spanish

This afternoon I received this email from one of the Spanish speaking office staff at my school...

"Jesus's mom has a question for you. Please give her a call. She doesn't speak English."

Hmm, alright, let my find someone in the office who speaks Spanish to call her back and find out what the question is.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Say whatever you'd like about our president, but comparing him to Hitler? Come on now, really?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Damn You Victoria's Secret...Updated

I know you have been waiting with bated breath...I love my new, old bra! With the start of the new school year I wasn't able to visit a VS store until this past weekend. I tried it on and was pleasantly surprised. I went home and ordered several of them using my online only coupon. They arrived today, and I love them...hooray! I'm so relieved.

Monday, August 17, 2009

My Take on Health Care

As the health care/insurance debate rages on it is hard to know which way is up and which "side" is winning. Government and politics are so frustrating and the more reading I do to become more knowledgeable, the more confused I am. If any changes are made to our current health care system, we are in for a long, drawn out process which will most likely lead to a watered down plan that doesn't change our nation's health care issues one bit. I have a lot of scattered opinions on this subject. Why don't I share...

The other day I had an experience that got me thinking our current state. Preventative care is not stressed and/or valued enough in our nations health care. Maybe that's due to the fact that there is a lot of money to be made on sick people, more money than if these sick people had the option of preventing their illness in the first place.

Through my job I have the option of putting some of my monthly salary into a "flex" account. This account can be used for medical expenses like co pays, prescriptions, glasses, over the counter medication, etc. The nice thing about this account is that the money is taken out of my paycheck before it is taxed. So it is a benefit in that I am getting more for this money as part of it is not being taken away from me before I get it. Since the new school year has just started, the year end on the flex account is quickly approaching. The one catch with this account is that any money you don't use by the year end date is lost. I haven't been told where it goes, but it doesn't get pushed into the next year and it doesn't get sent back to me in a check. When I first signed up for this account a few years back, that fact bothered me a lot. But over time I realized that if the deadline was getting close and I still had money in the account I could quickly spend it on over the counter meds like aspirin and cold medication. I have never needed to spend this way before because I have always used the amount in the account. This past year I put a bit more into the account than previous years since in previous years I have run out of money a few months before the year end. I thought this additional amount would even me out over the year and, as it is tax free, would be more beneficial to me. However, at my year end I have about $150 left in the account.

Off to Target I went this weekend to stock up on the year's cold medicine (NyQuil, DayQuil) and big bottles of Tylenol and Excedrin. I also added some bottles of my multivitamins to the cart. All of the medication went through without any problems, but the vitamins were not allowed through. Apparently I am not allowed to use this flex account on vitamins - vitamins that will hopefully limit my need for all the chemical-driven cold medicine that I need. I still bought them, with my regularly taxed money, but I think this very small experience says a lot about our country's views on this issue. I think it also says a lot about why the drug and insurance companies don't want government getting involved in health care. If we are well, they don't make money.

A few year's back I had a conversation with a friend of mine who has contacts in the movie industry. Apparently the industry's insurance is very good. Something that struck me as funny (not haha) was that the insurance didn't cover birth control for its insured females, but it did cover Viagra for its insured males. (I guess that's a little funny haha, and pretty ironic).

I, luckily, am not one of the many Americans who don't have health care. My school district provides me with health insurance and foots the bill for all of it (for now anyway). I could say it was good insurance as, with a slightly higher copay, I can choose to go to any doctor (including specialists) that I want. I won't say it's good insurance because about 2 years ago my regular doctors stopped accepting my insurance because they got tired of dealing with the insurance company.

Politically, I swim in the left on most issues, but occasionally dip my feet into the right side of the pool. I truly believe however that health care is not a liberal/conservative issue. It's a life/death issue. Politicians need to get the politics out of health care and do something to fix this system. It is clearly not working for a lot of people (republican and democrat).

Monday, August 10, 2009

Another Year

Tomorrow I begin another new school year. It's the first day of school! This is my tenth year of teaching and even so I get excited and nervous about the first day of school...just like the kids do.
The new supplies are always fun. A week or so ago I headed to Staples and Target to buy new pencil boxes, crayons, folders, glue sticks, pens, and books. I enjoy starting a new plan book and school year calendar. It feels good to get the classroom set up and organized so it's just right when the kids arrive. When we finally get our class list it's exciting to read the previous teachers' comments, write name tags, and prepare a the seating chart. I am always amazed when I get to my line and see how little the students are compared to the class I said good bye to in June. Meeting the new kids and putting a face to their name is how I begin the first day. I promise them that I will know all of their names by the time they walk out the door at the end of the day, and I always do.

At the same time I have some anxiety about the first day of school. I want them to like me but also respect me. I want to like and respect them. I want to meet their needs. I want them to live up to their potential. I worry that those one or two in kids in the class who require more of me won't get it being in a class of 20+ students. These thoughts have swirled around in my head since I have started preparing for the new year. Some of them will disappear as soon as the first day of school begins. Others won't subside until the end of June.

I can't believe my summer is over. The first day of school is tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Good News...For Real

Although I have been known to write about real news every-so-often, my blog would never be accused of being righteous, or hard hitting, or even educational. That's OK though because it is my blog and I can write what I want to write; what I enjoy writing. Other bloggers have written in regards to their disgust over bloggers like me who ramble on about meaningless things like celebrities, television, food, or (gasp!) shoes. So obviously these same bloggers wouldn't have been happy with my bra post yesterday. I want to make something very clear about the bra post... in the big picture of things, the discontinuation (and later continuation) of my favorite bra isn't terribly important. It was important to me for about 30 seconds when I found out, but I am aware that the fate of humanity does not rely upon where I keep my boobs (although possibly the fate of my boobs).

I do want to share some real GOOD NEWS. It seems as if the journalists being imprisoned in a North Korea labor camp for 12 years have been released and are on their way L.A. That is way better news than my girly, pathetic news from yesterday. Laura Ling and Euna Lee were pardoned after Bill Clinton went to North Korea with a secret message from the White House for Kim Jong II. In a time where good news is hard to find (on the news anyways) it is nice to hear something like this.

Welcome Home Ladies!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Good News!

A few weeks ago I posted about a beef I had with Victoria's Secret. I had many great recommendations, from Nordstroms to Macys, and some really helpful ones like Ebay and the 99 cent store. Even with all of the suggestions I received I didn't go bra shopping, but rather stayed home and pouted about the discontinuation of my favorite bra. And for the first time ever, I think my pouting worked! It seems as if Victoria's Secret is bringing it back. WooHoo! It's supposed to be even better because it now comes with something called "Memory Fit". I have no idea what that means but it sounds like they have made my bra smarter than before. It comes out on August 11. I am so relieved!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Whose Idea Was This Anyways

This month restaurant chains in California now report calorie and nutritional value on their menus. Last night was my first experience with the new menus. What a bummer that was! Seriously, of course it is a good idea that consumers know what they are eating, even when they are out to eat. However, finding out that the meal you want has more calories than you are supposed to consume in one whole day, well, just sucks. I love to cook and make my own delicious meals, but it is nice to go out to eat every-so-often and have something tasty too. Sadly, that tasty meal tends to have five million calories in it. What's worse is now we know about it.

Something that was quite interesting on the menu from last night's dinner out was that many of those "healthy" salads had more calories than a cheeseburger and fries. We spent about 15 minutes looking and comparing and gasping at these new menu numbers. The good news...Forget the Chinese Chicken Salad, bring on that Cheeseburger!