30 September 2008

12 really bored men (and women)

I checked the "hotline" last night to find the trial was still on the docket and I had to report for jury duty today.
The pool of people milled around, drank coffee, and were otherwise bored silly. I had the foresight to bring some papers to grade, so I worked on those, read my booklet, and waited. Eventually, the court administrator came in and showed us a video, and let us know that voir dire would start soon. We waited. And waited. Eventually, the judge called us in and explained that he had accepted a plea at the last minute. He continued to relate that they don't normally do that once the jury has reported and so many people have been inconvenienced, but between he and the attorneys, they had decided it was the best outcome for everyone involved. He also explained that someone who is willing to fight a charge sometimes gets cold feet at the last minute when they realize the evidence and witnesses are stacked against them. Not so dumb, that. So, I frantically prepared sub plans to wind up having an afternoon off. Got to spend a little time with iPastor and Thing 4, so it was all good. Justice has been served.

29 September 2008

10 on Tuesday...

...Ten things that scare me/freak me out

1. Sarah Palin (John McCain doesn't frighten me but the thought of "President Palin" is as frightening as "President Quayle." *shudder*)
2. The economy
3. Gas prices
4. Propane prices
5. The idea of drowning
6. or burial alive

I've run dry. Many things that would appear on lists like this don't really scare me. Spiders, snakes, etc. I startle as easily as anyone of something hops/slithers/crawls across my path and I wasn't expecting it, but the actual critter doesn't bug me. Once I get past the surprise I'll shoo or catch and dispatch whatever offending critter has come my way. I will make the "freak out" exception for ticks, or anything parasitic for that matter. The idea of something hitching a ride and a free meal on me or mine is repulsive to me. So we'll make that 7.

28 September 2008


While randomly surfing, I happened across this picture:

When I was in eighth grade, I moved with my sister's family from a small town in northwestern Iowa to a small town on the other side of the border in southwestern Minnesota. It was only 16 miles away, so I kept in touch with many of my old friends, but I had the opportunity to meet lots of new people, too. Among them was a young lady named Kim. She had bleach-blonde hair, but otherwise struck an amazing resemblance to the picture, from clothes to attitude to Bad Reputation. Completely without imagination, her friends all called her Jett. I was drawn to her like a moth to a flame. We hung out for a relatively short time before she got sent to juvy, reformed, became a hairdresser, married, had kids and lived happily ever after. We were together long enough, however, for someone to notice a "Gette" in my name as well, which they began calling me. It stuck. For 25 years so far. That, as they say, is where the story began.

27 September 2008

76 trombones

During high school, Saturdays in the fall meant one thing for me: marching band. I was in the color guard, on the flag line. We marched in parades and field shows every Saturday from the middle of August until Thanksgiving. We spent hours on the street, lining up, straightening ranks, rounding corners. If the ground was dry we were marching formations and learning to step exactly three paces to five yards on the field. If it was muddy, the director reserved us 100 yards of the parking lot for practice. It paid off. We took home awards and were invited to the National Independence day parade in Washington DC. Summer marching was new, but we were up for the challenge, to the point of winning the competition.
The home show was Tri_State Band festival. This year we took the Things down to watch for only the second time. Waitressing and working in nursing all these years, I've hardly ever had the last Saturday of September free. It was fun to see. Most of the bands do a mini-show on the street. It's annoying as heck when they're holding up a regular parade, but this show is all bands, so what the heck. One of my friends from band now directs one of the major AAA contenders in the region. They looked awesome. The tri-state area has several major competitions every fall; Brookings, Vermillion, Sioux Falls, Brandon and, of course, Tri-State. My part of the country has summer marching, if the program hasn't been cut all together. Field shows get trotted out for homecoming games, then forgotten. Saturday was all about the nostalgia for me. It was a good thing.
We got in some bonus time with grandparents as well. We've now made at least one pass through the ranks of family neglected during Elsie's illness. Nice to be home now.

26 September 2008

Birthday Blues, in a good way

iPastor took me out for my birthday. We went to Bootlegger's. Awesome food, and we lucked into Blues night with Jerry Ostensoe. Good stuff on both counts. It was nice just to chill out and hang with my honey.

25 September 2008

15 passenger van+60 miles+free pizza=

Knowledge Bowl Coaches meeting tonight. Finally home. Kids are owly. So am I.

24 September 2008

Another dancing Thing...

...Country Kitchen and grocery shopping. My days are slipping away from me.

23 September 2008

Dancing Thing...

...and Burger King. I rock the paper crown.

22 September 2008


I made the mistake of opening Thing 3's window for some fresh air yesterday, and got a ceiling full of flies. Ew.
Thing 4 wound up with strep, which is a pain but easily treated. Poor kid. He's been much better today, but zonked out right after supper.
Now I'm off to watch the season premiere of Heroes! Woot! Monday nights are cool again.

21 September 2008

A good time was had by all

Yesterday we went to Watertown, SD to see my brother, part of the aforementioned plan to catch up with the rest of the family. We couldn't have asked for a more gorgeous day. We tried a new-to-us pizza buffet place, where we ate until we were miserable and played in the arcade. The kids wanted to go putt-putt golfing, which was a clever ruse to go ride go-karts. I couldn't think of a really good reason to say "no," so we headed for Thunder Road. When we got there, I noticed the signboard said "military day." Bro and his wife are retired Air Force, so she grabbed her ID. We were expecting a discount; we got five free tickets for each veteran. Nice surprise. We dropped a little coin in the arcade and a couple extra golf games by way of thanks. Gotta love a place that appreciates vets. After some days in the sun, we hit the Evil*Empire Stupid Center for an oil change and some shopping, then headed home. Passing through the river bottom, we scared up our usual batch of twilight deer. It was a lovely night for a drive.
Today is a day to catch up on housework and keep an eye on Thing 4. He woke crying with an earache. I managed to get him comfortable enough with cold medicine to get back to sleep, and he's been fine ever since, but if his ear hurt that bad there must be something cooking in there. A mother's work...

19 September 2008

It's that time of year again...

It's Talk Like A Pirate Day!!!!

(Unfortunately, it is also homecoming day at our school, so I don't get to do anything fun with it. There's always next year...)

18 September 2008

Sappy mom, or something

So I'm a sentimental lightweight, but this video choked me up a little.

17 September 2008

The outlaws are coming

Pizza with iPastor's dad and stepmom tonite. We've been making an effort to catch up with all the family we neglected over the summer. My brother's up next this weekend. Baby steps.

16 September 2008

Just a walkin' the dog...

City lights do not block the starlight out here. Tonight, however, the moon wanes still nearly full, dimming the stars in a brilliant blue glow, casting long shadows from the east. Two of the shadows are long and low to the ground, swaying gently over the gravel. The two seem connected at the shoulder. He nearly eclipses her, so much larger. They move as one, like a well-trained team of horses. His nose catches a scent, and they veer in unison to the weeds at the side of the road. Satisfied, they continue ahead, chasing the shadows they cast. Claws click and gravel crunches. The night couldn't be more perfect. All too soon, these excursions will be cut short by the bitter cold; the clicks will be muffled by snow. For now, they turn to trail their shadows behind them and point their noses toward home.

15 September 2008

Guess all I had to do was ask...

GOrgeous weather on tap all week. Not spending it here in front of a screen!

14 September 2008

Enough with the dreary

Rainy crappy weekend. The forecast for the week looks nice, but we gotta get past the soggy gray morning. It's a good day to stay inside and fold the mountain of laundry. Or play video games. Or watch food network. I see a problem...

13 September 2008

Shop 'til we drop

We got Thing 1 an eye appointment today in Saint Cloud, so we used it as an excuse to spend the day shopping. I actually bought clothes at retail. Without guilt. I still bought more at thrift stores, but I think MIL would have liked me to spend her birthday gift on teacher clothes. I don't normally like clothes shopping, but I was on a mission. iPastor got in plenty of geeky electronic shopping and pawn diving, and we both got in some thrifting. By mid-afternoon, everyone was pretty tired and cranky, and I think passing around a mild cold bug, but we got our second wind at Bravo Burrito, picked up some video games and headed home. We made a quick stop at a grocery store, where iPastor picked up coffee and the teenagers played with the huge revolving door, giggling wildly until someone puked. The rest of the ride home was mostly uneventful, except for suddenly driving into fog. I pronounce it a successful shopping excursion, though we didn't top at McDonald's once.

12 September 2008

Bonfire season

Our neighbor Dan has felt so much better since he got his new kidney and he spends a lot of his newfound energy baking. He's Dan the cookie man, everyone's unofficial uncle. He lives right next to the bus stop, and the kids don't usually make it home from the bus without stopping for a cookie.
The weather has been perfect for lighting up fires. Dan can usually be found in the gathering dusk with a few neighbor kids in his front yard around his firepit. Before too long he usually has a few adults gathered around to chat and help herd the kids, or drag their own home. It's a pleasant way to spend a half hour or so. I've still got a pile from my fallen tree to burn. Before long we'll fire our pit up, too. Fall is coming quickly.

11 September 2008

Sad day in town

A kid from the Things' school was buried today. Last week he and a friend were goofing off with a gun... He was 17.

10 September 2008

Wednesday already?

Over the hump...

We had another council meeting about the garden man tonight. The place was packed, but less than half were from town. The local sustainable farming people have gotten on the band wagon. I'd just like the city to spend $3600 on something useful, and not lawyers' fees.

09 September 2008

Starting to get in the groove...

...now if the one class would just wake up, and the other shut up.

08 September 2008


Tonight's recliner and cocker spaniel time was spent with Elvis, via PBS. This concert is weirdly, cheesily awesome.

07 September 2008

Happiness is a Warm Puppy

Been working on getting the dogs better socialized, and it feels like we're making progress. They got left in the rain yesterday, so we had baths and brushing in the late afternoon. Last evening I got to nap in the recliner with a warm cocker spaniel in my lap. Not a bad thing.

06 September 2008

And still with the cleaning.

Got most of MIL's stuff moved from her house to her garage today, so we can scrub and start showing. Now to gear up for a garage sale. Oy.

05 September 2008

Jumping in with both feet.

Remember when I was disappointed in the part-time offer? Totally not the case any more. Everyone should be this lucky. It's all about easing in now.

04 September 2008

Free to a good home...

Kittens. Four dark grey stripey tabby. One formerly grey and white. Found crockpot with sloppy joe remnants. Is now orange tabby.

03 September 2008

So far...

...so good.
I apologize for the lack of content, but between the new teacher thing, and still dealing with MIL's stuff (it looks like we're moving with all the unpacked boxes around here) I feel the need to keep my head down and keep plugging. Rest assured, I am storing up colorful anecdotes to share with you when I feel it is safe to relax. Like in three years.

02 September 2008

01 September 2008


Today working in my room was much better. I'm getting excited. My PRAXIS scores arrived with certificates of excellence and made me feel much better.