Monthly Archives: October 2006

The Crossroads Cafe

First time in a long time a book kept me up past midnight. Deborah Smith’s The Crossroads Cafe is amazing. It’s earthy and shocking in places, political at times and yet the story is absolutely mesmerizing. It’s probably the best book I’ve read this year. Definitely worth the wait from Amazon.

Driving Lessons Part 2

What exactly does it mean when you’re driving down a twisty-turny country road and you suddenly brake because there’s somethign weird in the road and it turns out that something weird is a HORSE SKELETON!?! And it’s right outside the fence of a well known haunted farm on the outskirts of town?


Driving Lessons

I need chocolate in a big, big way. And maybe a tranquilizer. I’ve done plenty of scary things in my life but the scariest thing ever was riding in a car with DD driving the speed liimit for the first time.
I liked first gear just fine. Fifth, ACK!


Today my principal stepped into the computer problem and within an hour, the problem was fixed. WOO HOO!!!!
I learned a lot about conflict mediation watching him work. He’s truly the best principal ever.
I can’t believe how much better I feel. I had no idea how much this problem was affecting my life outside of the newsroom.

Loved Grey’s, but it’s not been as good as last season. Hopefully they’re working up to greatness. I decided to stop watching 6 Degrees because it’s an Abrams show and he ticks me off too much after two seasons. 😦 I get reeled into a show I can’t miss and suddenly the whole thing shifts because he fires the great writers and replaces them with people who have no clue. Alias and Lost have proven that to me.

Survivor was interesting. I still haven’t really picked a favorite. I don’t feel the intensity about the show this season. I think the race thing with all the mini tribes made it hard to connect.

DD’s finalizing her current events project for English. Man, she is such a liberal!

Lost Cause

Anyone else disappointed, once again, with Lost?
This show used to be awesome.
And maybe that’s why it’s so disappointing.

The Nine was great again. Hope that continues.

Our computer system went down again today. It was “just” for 15 minutes.
UGH. That 15 minutes might be “just” to guys in a building that don’t have to work within 50-minute classes, but to me it’s equivalent to taking my entire class and throwing the students one by one out the second story window.
My friend from school gave me chocolate and a card with the Serenity Prayer on it. I put the card on the bulletin board behind my desk. I’m going to embrace the idea behind that prayer. And try not to cuss too much while I’m learning this lesson. The chocolate’s almost gone. 🙂

Human Error

Two of the newspaper pages died today after deadline. I’m sure the technology guys would say it’s human error. And maybe they’re right. I mean just because it’s NEVER HAPPENED in the years I’ve been using InDesign doesn’t mean a thing. Grrr.
On a bright note, my editors were awesome. And it’s done now. WHich is good because yearbook has to have the computers tomorrow.
DH said maybe I could get another computer. One all my own. One NOT connected to the crappy school network otherwise known as the devil.
He followed that idea with a comment about saving money.
What am I supposed to do with that?
I should go work on my new story.
I think I’ll go to bed instead.

Travel with Students

I’m lucky.
Seriously lucky.
This weekend I’ve traveled around Texas with a group of teenage students and had a wonderful time. A few years ago a parent asked me if I just stayed up all night with the kids to keep them from getting in trouble. I laughed.
I’ve been to conferences where those chaperones exist. But that’s not the way I do business.
I believe in a thing called personal responsibility.
I set an expectation. The kids live up to that expectation or the pay the consequences if they get caught.
That IF word gets in the way sometimes. And as a parent, I totally understand that.
But here’s the reality. Kids need to learn how to make choices. My students know the consequence for deletrious activity on a road trip. If they make a bad choice, living with the consequence for that choice is a good life lesson.
A few years ago on a UIL trip, a group of our students had a little party.
They got caught.
They got sent home.
They suffered the district consequences, plus they were removed from the team for a season.
All but one student learned a major life lesson. All but one joined us the next year and BOY are they great role models now. They have no problem talking about how stupid they were to destroy what could have been an awesome year for one night and a bottle of tequila.
But one girl didn’t learn.
See her parents stepped in and BLAMED the sponsors. They didn’t understand how such a party could’ve taken place. Didn’t we check bags? Didn’t we stay outside the hotel doors?
The parents never got it. They never got that their child was drinking on a school trip AND at home. That she was making choices that were going nowhere good. I don’t know what happened to that girl. She dropped the team and she wasn’t in my event anyway. The girl still paid consequences because drinking on a school trip isn’t just “going away.”
As a parent of a teen, I find myself facing this kind of thing more and more often. It’s so hard to let your kid make their own choices! So hard to sit back and watch and not just lock them away in a room somewhere and pray for the best. But you know what? Life’s choices are here to stay. How much better she learn to navigate them at 16 with me standing by to step in if necessary than in two years at college surrounded by other 18-yr-olds. I’m going to keep syaing that to myself. And hop[efully soon, I’ll believe it.


This San Antonio trip has been awesome. I met Mary F. in person yesterday and saw Mel again, learned lots, realized I need to work a lot more on my goal setting workshop before I present it again, remembered how much I love presenting I’m Not Satan AND ate entirely too much. 🙂
Went to the Imax theatre tonight and saw The Haunted Castle with the kids. Silly movie, but it was still fun.
Tomorrow we’ll wrap things up, get any awards we might win and eat some more. 🙂
It’s definitely time to start writing again.

LOST :-(

So I got lost on the riverwalk. I’m still not sure how I did it, but my kids took it all in stride. 🙂
And we still got eat at the mall.


My friend Mel finalled in the Romance Junkies contest. Her entry is third, so it’s going to the editor!!!! Woo Hoo!
Lots of Struggling Writers from e-Harlequin finalled too. Very exciting.

DD and I are watching Almost Famous. I love this movie. I wish there was a way I could edit it for the classroom. 🙂