ringsandcoffee: (rar!)
As I sit here in my hoodie, I really appreciate the ~2 months of cold weather we get here. Cold as in 40s overnight, and 60s or low 70s during the day. Ok, low 70s are warmish but you still wear a sweater. We also had several days in the 50s, which was bliss. By February, it will be more consistent 70s weather. April may hit the 80s, and May is officially hot again. June has a few spikes; July and August just suck. SUCK. It makes me sad just thinking about it. But, no, I will appreciate the cold while I can.
ringsandcoffee: (P&P Darcy little teapot)
-Both the roommie and I got back into town Friday night.
-AC stopped making cold air on Sunday night.
-AC got fixed Monday. Low freon level, the tech said.
-AC sort of stops making cold air again about 6pm today (Tuesday). Tech can't come till tomorrow. House is holding at 85, which is comfortable but it's still 99 degrees outside (almost 10 pm) so can't open the windows.
-I have to be here for the AC tech, but am supposed to be over at my new place to wait for the carpet cleaners between 12-6. I think I will call and see if they can come later in that window.

Hmm, I will post a pic for y'all from my trip. Which to choose...


This is inside the Assembly Rooms in Bath. I felt so Jane Austen-ish then!
ringsandcoffee: (P&P Lizzie reading)
Comment on this post and I will choose six interests from your profile. You will then explain what they mean/why you are interested in them. Post this along with your answers in your own journal so that others can play along.



Arizona
Hmm, trying to remember if there was more reason to listing this than the fact that I live here. No, I think the fact that I moved here is why I added it to my interests way back when. I lived in California all my life before coming here 8 years ago for a job. A friend I'd known since 8th grade was already a teacher here, and helped me get a job at her school. Just checked my archive, and yesterday marked 8 years since I arrived.

Jane Austen
Jane, oh Jane. How do I love thee, Ms. Austen? Let me count the ways: Pride and Prejudice, Darcy, all your books, your leading men, your scoundrels, your smart female characters, the way you parts of Sense and Sensibility and Mansfield Park make me wish I could reach into the pages and shake Fanny Dashwood, Mrs. Ferrars, and Aunt Norris...that's just a start to the list. Watching P&P (2005) at [livejournal.com profile] holbytla's insistence was my gateway into period literature and movies.

Lord of the Rings
This is another fandom I was quite late in entering. Somehow I made it until 2003 before discovering the books existed. ROTK was in theaters when one of my coworkers and my friend [livejournal.com profile] ewanspotter said I needed to watch the movies. I had no idea what they were talking about. Later on, I vaguely remembered seeing a poster for TTT. Coworker loaned me FOTR, extended edition I think; I watched it and wondered what the heck I had just seen. A day or 2 later I found myself at Blockbuster (and I rarely rent movies) getting TTT. I watched that on a dark and dreary day, and got more into it. By the end of the same week, I was at the theater immediately after work to see ROTK. By then, I was hooked. I saw ROTK 4 times total in theaters and read the books in 6 weeks. My coworker friend was more than happy to feed my addiction, watching the movies over and over, sharing her books and introducing me to the wonderful world of dvd bonus features. Haunting [livejournal.com profile] ewanspotter on here led me me to start my own LJ so I could fangirl to my heart's desire.

Phantom of the Opera
In 8th grade, we sang a medley of Phantom songs for chorus. I loved them. My chorus teacher read us what I think was an abridged version of Leroux's story. We also watched a made for TV miniseries that I would love to find again. I think it's this one. A year or so later, I got to see the show on stage in San Francisco. Our seats were terrible but I didn't care. What I remember most about that show was how sad the Phantom sounded, and how you could hear his wail travel around the theater as he mourned for Christine. I read the book that year as well, and loved the descriptions of the opera house and the world below it that the Phantom had build for himself. I didn't have much more to do with Phantom until the 2004 movie came out, which I saw twice. I'm not a huge theater-goer, and so for me to see a movie twice (and in 3 days even) at the theater is a big deal.

The movie soundtrack used to live in my car, and is quite good for singing along to, loudly. :D

Road Trips
I've never minded car rides. Well, unless I'm stuck in the backseat and get carsick. Even then, I love going places. Before I could drive, I liked going on random rides with my dad, taking back roads and seeing the sights. I love driving. I love going places, new or old. I love truck stops and convenience stores. I'll drive alone or with someone. Each December, I make the ~13-hour drive to my hometown for Christmas. In 2001, I did an epic, cross-country trip with my dad. Every once in a while, I get an itch and just have to go somewhere for the day. My camera is usually close by so I can document the journey.

Teaching
I am a teacher, so I probably should be interested in teaching. :) You get used to/better at it, but really, no 2 days are alike. Each day is a challenge. Classes can eat you alive, and that's happened to me. I start again in a few weeks, EEK. I could write a novel on this topic, but will spare y'all.
ringsandcoffee: (dude)


Maybe I could put the cookies out on my balcony.
ringsandcoffee: (beach sunset)
Summer has sprung. Spring was maybe 3 days. It's now in the 90s and air conditioning is necesary. Sigh.

ETA: One week after this post, it was cold and rainy. Bzuh?
ringsandcoffee: (dude)
Holy cow, I'm sitting here shivering. I did NOT want to get out of bed, my heater is coming on more often, and I suppose putting on more clothes than shorts and a tank top would help. The weather says it's 46 out with 43% humidity. ACK. It warms up later, but in the morning the temperature really dips. Last night I was outside next to a fire pit with only a sweater on. Later on, driving home, it was 41 degrees. Living here has definitely made me a weather baby. Well, at least for the cold. The hot summers I can handle.
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
My mommy and sister are gone back home. I'm glad they came, even though it seemed to go quickly. Well, 4 days is pretty fast. We went to the Grand Canyon via the scenic route, got me a new bookshelf, and ate a ton. I should write more here, but I'm feeling lazy. :)

Finished watching Bleak House. I like it. Maybe not enough to watch it again, but I liked it. Well, I take that back. I'm sure I'll watch parts of it here and again. One character's voice, not face, was so familiar, I had to pause it to check imdb. Mrs. Rouncewell on BH turned out to be the gypsy on Jane Eyre. Ah hah! I knew it was somebody I should know!
ringsandcoffee: (sup homies)
Valiant, but not in a good way
One of the vocabulary words the class was mapping was "valiant."  Part of the assignment is to draw a picture showing what the word means, and one girl drew me and a boy in the class, J, who is rather outspoken.  I asked why it made me valiant and she said no, J is valiant because he's not afraid of you. 

Did you, did you?
I have a ticket system this year, and every Monday I open my store where students can spend their tickets.  I've told them to write suggestions for items they'd like in the store, and I got 2 notes so far.  One of the boys, R, asked me a couple times over the week if I'd gotten the items he suggested.  He was very polite, and I assured him I had his list and would look for his suggestions.  He just made me smile. 

Um, it wasn't an option. 
We spent a week on a writing assignment, where I made sure to teach conclusions since I usually don't get around to that part.  In their plans, the first thing they did was write the topic sentence and the conclusion, copied from a list they could choose from.  Fast forward to yesterday when I'm collecting the final draft papers.  I look at one paper, and ask if the girl is finished.  When she said yes, I asked where the conclusion sentence was.  She very innocently answered, "Oh, I didn't want to put one!"  Kids, kids, kids.  It was in your rough draft, silly, all you had to do was copy it! 

Because I have so much free time
I finished The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Bronte, by Syrie James, on Wednesday, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  Last night I bought Shirley since I found it in Penguin Classics paperback.  I'm partial to Penguin versions of books.  So many books to read, so little time, and so many other things I ought to be doing!

Perplexing
Last night while walking across Tempe Marketplace to meet Jen, I found myself a little freaked out by all the families with children playing in the fountain area.  Then I wondered why I get weirded thinking these strangers have too many kids but my friends with children (Jen has 3) don't bother me at all. 

More "Only in Arizona" things
Only in Arizona are you excited to stand in the rain, in the middle of a shopping center.  Only in Arizona do you not completely care that the lightning is flashing about you as you stand in the rain.  [livejournal.com profile] mysterygal11 , I think you would have gotten used to the weather here had you stuck around longer. 

Flashes
Little things all over remind me of my dad.  They don't make me sad, just make me think of him. 

Attitude may not be everything, but it's a hefty portion
I'm determined to be more positive this year, and not stew in worry and anxiety.  It's really helped in class.  Instead of getting angry, I just wait until they are listening or issue a consequence.  There's a lot of prayer going on as well.  Some is just to myself, and some is when Susan comes over in the morning to pray together.  It's doing a whole lot for my sanity, to be sure. 
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
July 10th marked 4 years since moving to Arizona. I always forget the exact date, thinking it later than it really is. It's still hot here, but I'm slightly more used to it. I feel like I've been here forever.

Listened to some FOTR bonus features earlier, and now I'm listening to Jane Eyre. Ahh, I love these movies.

/random

I should go to sleep, so I'll be ready (ha ha) to work on my classroom again tomorrow.

Recap

Jun. 28th, 2009 10:30 pm
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
I loved my vacation.
Lake Tahoe will forever be my favorite place in the world.
It's too freaking hot in Phoenix.

Thank you and good night!
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
Arizona can't figure out what season it is. Today it's around 80 outside, but the temperature has fluctuated all week. Going to Tempe Marketplace and Firsta Mall, people are wearing everything from tank tops and shorts to long sleeved sweaters and jeans (me). I woke up ok, felt freezing as I got dressed, then got a little warm walking around the stores. Bath and Body Works was was freezing!

It's also the dreaded time of searching for Christmas presents. Dreaded for me because I think too hard trying to pick gifts. Items have to scream out a person's name for me to buy them, and I'm so distant from most of my family I don't know exactly what their current tastes are. I was also in search of a birthday gift for Alyssa, and the only thing that said her name was a pair of thigh high striped socks on a mannequin. Well, the store didn't actually sell them, or at least I couldn't find them. Alyssa could totally rock those socks with a skirt. Oh well.

I have to go to Fiesta Mall every few months to see what's new. This time around it's Rack Room Shoes, where I got a very cute and cheap pair of brown heels. The store was the most clean and organized of any RRS location I'd been to, and I told them so. They appreciated the compliment.

Ok, enough procrastinating. Chores to do!

note to self: song I really like this year: This is Home - Switchfoot
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
Since I was in the area, I got some take-out from Juan's then headed home. As I got on 51 to 202, the sky was a dusky blue and a full, yellow-orange moon was rising in the sky. As if that wasn't awesome enough, the color of the sky was hiding some clouds in the distance, inside which lightning was flashing. It may not be very green here in Arizona, but monsoon season offers some incredible sights. Lightning was rare where I grew up, and when we did have it, you saw the bolts. Here, more often, the lightning lights up the whole sky, inside the clouds. It might be clear blue in one area, and a gorgeous storm a few miles away.

So I'm heading east, mesmerized by the moon and storm, and then I drive past Tempe Town Lake, where the moon is reflecting off the water. Life is good.

Home!

Jun. 19th, 2008 08:44 pm
ringsandcoffee: (S&S Brandon watching)
Denver (and the other places we went) weather was gorgeous. Pilot announced that Phoenix was 111 degrees. I almost cried. Still, I drove out to get some dinner with the windows down and it was 105ish out.

Read my flist all the way to skip back 140. Finally read everything.

Hmm, must upload pictures from my camera. And finish the last 5 pages of Sense and Sensibility. And watch Pride and Prejudice. Or S&S '95. Cannot decide. Good to be home.
ringsandcoffee: (awesome)
I have to tell about my drive home before I talk about school. Gotta love monsoon season! First, there's the stifling humidity for a few hours. In the midst of this, I was standing outside in the bus circle after school with 2 dozen kids asking me which bus goes where. Yeah, I don't have a clue, and I was never given ANY bus information. Still, we do the best we can to help kids get home, which becomes even more amusing when they don't know where they live.
"Does this bus go to Blahblah St.?"
"I'm not sure. What other street is it near?"
"Phoenix."
"Phoenix isn't a street, it's a city."
"Yeah, it has to go to Blahblah St., Phoenix, ARIZONA..."
"Mmmkay you just wait here and I'll let you know when to get on the bus."

I finally got sick of standing outside and went back to my room. About an hour later, it started raining so I propped the door open so I could listen to it. As I'm getting ready to leave school, the lightning starts. Yay, that's always fun, worrying about getting hit by lightning. So, I finally leave at 5:18pm, teacher guides in backpack to look over for tomorrow. I stopped at Starbucks for a first day of school reward (mmmm toffee almond bar) and then head home. It's a good thing I got something to eat, as it took anohter hopur to get home. I live 10 miles away. Streets and freeways won't mean much to non-Phoenix people, but still. Loop 202 was crawling, so I took surface streets. First mistake, turning onto Curry Rd, which narrowed to one lane and took 15 minutes to go a single mile. Well, I get on 202 anyway and it's still crawling, all the way to 101, which is slower than a drunk sloth. Not wanting to sit in that traffic, I go surface streets again. Well, Broadway is crawling because Dobson is flooded and police are directing traffic out of the left turn lane. Oh yeah, a bunch of trees on Broadway's median were blown over. Things are ok, aside from the occasional large puddle, until I get to my complex and see that my parking lot is flooded. I'm able to park in my spot, which is only sitting in about an inch of water. However, I had to take off my shoes so I could walk in the 8" deep puddle that is the parking lot. I was cracking up; good thing I wore cropped pants today. I took out my camera to document the experience, and just laughed at the cars having to drive through the mess. I'll post a picture later.

Oh yeah, it's a good thing I got off on Broadway because US 60 was a mess, also due to floods.

Ok, so onto Day 1. I thought that this post was from the first day last year, but it was the second. Still, the difference between that day and today is absolutely wonderful. Fourth graders are SO different from 8th graders! Even though I still have to figure out scheduling and curriculum, I'm not at all stressed. Last year, I was stressed to the point of not really wanting to eat and dreading each morning. Right now, I feel ok. I talked to the other teachers, and realized I'm sort of expecting too much from the kids, as I'm still in the 8th grade mindset, but it's ok. I can change things. It will be nice to slow down and be able to teach them.

It's only the first day, but I think it's going to be a good year.
ringsandcoffee: (awesome)
Two years and 3 days since I moved to Arizona. Than goodness for LJ archives, because I can never remember the exact date.

Back

Jul. 3rd, 2007 09:52 pm
ringsandcoffee: (P&P head touch close)
I have returned from California.

I'm hungry, but food requires a trip to the store, because I have nothing here. Nothing that isn't canned, that is.

Procrastination days are over. Summer (for me) is half over, and I have a lot of work to do.

I need to do a post about my trip, but it might take a while, so that must wait.

It's warm in here.
ringsandcoffee: (green)
Greetings from California, where the weather was in the 70s! It's actually chilly and breezy at 1030pm, whereas last night in Tucson and Phoenix it was still over 100 degrees. Tucson had some lightning though, which I love. So, yeah, I'm at my mom's house, on the computer just like I would be at home. I have a few days of hanging out with family, plus a surprise party for a friend that I didn't think I'd be able to go to. I also get to play with my mom's dog. Whatever shall I do tomorrow? Perhaps go driving around and get my fill of TREES. The hills aren't green, but there's still more vegetation here.

Update on book choices: I grabbed Phantom of the Opera off the shelf one day, and have slowly been working on that. It's not actually that long, so I may finish it before I get back to AZ. I almost bought Children of Hurin and another Austen book yesterday, but held back. I have 2-3 books at home I should read before I buy another. I brought the teacher/classroom management book I need to read also, but I just don't want to deal with school. This procrastination will bite me in the butt later on, but it's SUMMER! I don't want to work!

I totally want chocolate.
ringsandcoffee: (grin)
(Finally finished writing this a day later)

Three, if you count that I finally slept in as late as I wanted to today. I didn't have to get up at my usual work times, but I still had to be somewhere every day since school ended last Friday.

Ahhh, so yesterday I experienced two things for the first time. One was finally going to Mexico. Growing up in northern California, the closest I ever got was San Diego. My church always took the high school group on missions trips the week I wasn't on spring break. Shoot, I've been to Canada 3 times, and that's way farther away. On Sunday, Luis and I were chatting away, and he told me he finally has 2 days off. Since he had lived in Nogales for a while, and I had never been, we decided to make a day trip out of it.

On the way, we stopped at Picacho Peak, where there's an ostrich farm. For $5 you get a cup of feed for the ostriches and deer, and a little container of nectar for the lorikeets. A sign shows how to feed the ostriches, and claims they don't bite. Well, you get out there and big signs say they DO bite. They peck really, but have no teeth. Well, I held some food flat on my palm as shown, and they peck hard! The bird did pinch my hand a little. Man, those birds are scary! You can pour food into little trays but they attack almost before you get the food in. Too bad we didn't save any for the deer, which were way calmer and cuter. They make funny noises, and stick their tongues out wanting food. I wasn't able to get a picture with the tongue though. Next we went to the lorikeet house. As soon as Luis went in, one landed on his back and I totally freaked out. I finally did go in, and thankfully, no birds landed on me. They all liked him. We took pictures, which I will post later, bought a few postcards, and left.

Next stop was Tucson, or actually Oro Valley, at Luis's parents' house. We ate lunch and talked for a while. His parents are really nice, and his mom is a good cook. It's true, they totally spoil him. I love their house, and the dogs.

When you get past Tucson towards Nogales, the signs give kilometers instead of miles. Strange, but oh well. You can see the houses going up the hillside before you cross the border, and I don't know what is holding those things up. How they got a foundation in the side of the hill, or if they did, I don't know. We parked and then walked across the border. I swear, it was weird. To get in, you just walk through this turnstile gate, no one watching, no big deal. I had no idea where to go, so we just walked to where I could buy something. Ok, that's just about everywhere. The small, crowded huts, for lack of better term, were closer to the border. Since I just scream "tourist," they were all inviting me in to look at their wares. I didn't want to be rude, so I looked, and said no thanks to most of it. Really, there was nothing I wanted. After about 10 places, I finally looked at some bracelets, and bought one I truly liked. It's my souveneir of the trip, along with the pictures. Luis and I got all sorts of funny comments. The shopkeepers kept telling me that he was buying anything I wanted. We were refered to as honeymooners by one, and I swear another person refered to him as my dad (?!?). Afterwards, we walked further into town, to places Luis remembered. We ate at one little cafe; I ordered strawberry and banana creps but ended up with walnut plantain crepes. Plantains are ok, but not enough like a banana for me. I ate some, and about half of Luis's fries as well. My mango margarita tasted like frozen orange juice concentrate, but I still liked it.

Since we were on foot, we didn't get that far into town, but we did zigzag through several streets looking around. Luis kept saying how different it was, and pointed out places he remembered. The shops crack me up, with the variety of items they sell. Almost all carry the same things, and they are all packed with wares. On the way back to the border, we stopped at another restaurant, Kookarpacha's, with a nice outdoor seating area. I had a Coca-Cola Light, aka Diet Coke. The bottle was obviously returned/refilled from the wear marks. I wanted to keep the bottle, but didn't ask, so just left it. Walking back through the border, you have to declare citizenship. Basically, you just show ID. I guess beginning next year, you'll need a passport, so it's a good thing I went now.

We drove around Nogales on the AZ side, looking for Luis's old school, then headed back to Tucson, where I had my other "first." Ok, so there were several firsts that day, but this one is major: I got pulled over for speeding. I was crusing along somewhere around 85 in what I thought was a 75 zone. I saw the cop too late, which was after Luis pointed him out. I slowed, but he had turned around. Not sure whether he would come after me, since he had to let another car go by before he could get on the road, I pulled over to the right lane anyway, and sure enough the cop caught up to me. He asked me if I knew what the limit was, and I really didn't know, so I said 75, which was the last posting I'd seen. However, we had just gotten back into the Tucson area, so it changed to 55 somewhere. I gulped. He asked if I knew how fast I was going, and I sad about 80; he nodded then went to go write up the report. So, I'm sitting there, ready to take my ticket and wondering what my fine and insurance cost will be. I said to Luis, wouldn't it be funny if he let me off? So, the officer comes back and says that he's putting me down as 64 in a 55 zone, and giving me a waste of finite resources ticket. My fine is $37 and it doesn't go on my record or insurance. I was drop-jawed. He didn't explain why he gave that to me, instead of the $201 fine I should have gotten. My theory is that I cooperated and admitted fault, and/or I have a pretty clean driving record. My last ding was over 5 years ago. Whatever it was, I thanked him profusely, and was soon on the road again, with Luis constantly reminding me to watch my speed.

Not in a real hurry to get back, I considered calling [livejournal.com profile] mercuriehg but thought she might still be out of town. (Mer, we have to go to Eegees again!) Instead, we went to 4th street in Tucson, and stopped at a coffee shop whose owner goes to Luis's shop when she's in town. My vanilla au lait was pretty good, and it was nice to sit outside at the picnic tables. Around UofA reminds me of downtown Davis. The houses and little shops are similar, and a far cry from Phoenix and ASU. Afterwards, it was back to Oro Valley to give Luis's mom the vase he bought, plus pick up the Police concert tickets he's trying to sell. At last, we headed home, singing to the radio, talking about food, lack of time to cook, work, future road trips, etc. Even with the run-in with the law, I had a blast.
ringsandcoffee: (Default)
I need to start grading, but instead I'm on the computer and listening to P&P. No, I don't watch it everyday, and I rarely sit and watch it through, but instead listen while doing other things. I'll often stop it, so it takes twice as long to get through.
On my to do list: grading, laundry, change my sheets. I think I'll keep the list short, otherwise I won't do anything till tomorrow, and then my day will really suck.


For those who don't believe it, Arizona DOES get cold. It's in the 30s today, and it's cold in my apt even with the heat on. I know I'll miss this come July, but whatever.
ringsandcoffee: (HL kiss)
Hmm, cranberry BLISS bar. I ate it so fast I don't mind the million calories or even sitting in traffic tonight.

Annoying kid is suspended tomorrow! I didn't even have anything to do with it!

Kid who came back from suspension is behaving in my class. I need to give him some recognition tomorrow.

I feel SO MUCH BETTER about grades my kids get now that I've seen their midterm reports. Holy crap, we have a lazy bunch this year!

Kid tells me they have too much work to do, with my project (which I am giving class time to do) on top of a 2 page paper for science. Why did they get a 2 page paper? Because they complained about the shorter length originally assigned and the teacher extended it. I love the new science teacher. When I told them that he isn't making new rules, simply enforcing the ones we already have, and that I am being "unfair" by NOT writing them up nearly as much as I should, suddenly I'm so nice.

I need food. Too lazy to walk to fridge.

Ok, I am officially an Arizonan, or something. It was 75 out and I was cold. Hmm.

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