kitthebrave: (Default)
So, the mostly-final report on the open house:

- The fire department actually gave out *80* smoke detectors, and they were thrilled.
-The urban forester (yes, we have one) gave out all her info on taking care of the trees in your yard.
- I'm not sure what recycling was giving out, but they gave it all out, and they were happy.
- The evening ESL teacher told her class to make a list of questions for all the city departments and go down to the party and ask them, and she was happy. She said it was the first time she'd ever had a field trip come to her.
- My boss' boss' boss sent me an email today saying that he had heard good things about the open house.
- The radio station interviewed several people; I haven't heard it, but it sounds like it went well.

I am *sore* today from walking around so much, and the dragon boat is taking up an awful lot of room in the closet, but it is so awesome that I have to keep it.

Now I have a party for the Big Brothers/Big Sisters and the LEGO team scrimmage, and the teen volunteers are making fleece blankets for the Christmas dinner at the community center. But once that's done, it's just Christmas at Hogwarts left for big work stuff in 2011!

Hooray!

Nov. 29th, 2011 09:31 pm
kitthebrave: (Default)
It went so well, y'all! We were hoping for 100 people and there were actually between 200 and 300. The kids had a great time, the community center looked awesome, we did not run out of food too quickly, the mayor seemed happy, lots of people took the tour of our computer classroom and saw everything we can teach up there, some people checked out library books...

I did not sit down for eight hours straight except for one time when I drove from the community center to the library and back. I have over 12,000 steps on my pedometer.

Here's the dragon boat! Big cardboard Viking boat with shields!

And here's our library booth: Big fake dragon and fire!

The "Read" poster is Enrique Iglesias. I brought it over to hang on the wall, but didn't have a frame big enough. The staff decided he was too pretty not to display. :D

THANK YOU for all your good wishes! I'll find out tomorrow how the dignitaries and city staff liked it, but I think they were happy too. And the fire department gave out 65 smoke detectors, so those are some people who will be safe this winter!

Yay!

Progress!

Nov. 26th, 2011 11:02 pm
kitthebrave: (Default)
Christmas cards halfway done.

Two different kinds of cookie dough in freezer. (Neither of them are chocolate chip. HtB has asked me not to make chocolate chip, even the dough, until he loses some more weight, because the temptation would be too great.)

And, since today was a work day for me, and the wonderful HtB helped a LOT:

Posters put up at community center for grand opening. I used every "READ" poster we had at the library and made two different trips to Hobby Lobby for those super-cheap bad plastic frames. I take it back. I used Pat Mora, Tish Hinojosa, Ricky Williams, and Chuck Norris. I didn't use Laura Bush. Then I raided the children's room closet for old summer reading program posters and put them up. I still need, by my estimation, four or five more posters. There are a LOT of blank walls in that place.

ESL posters taken down from community center hallway, where they were stuck directly to the wall with tape. Big new bulletin board put up and decorated. ESL posters put back up on big new bulletin board. It looks much better, but I hope they will think, "Oh look! Someone gave us a bulletin board!" and not "Hey! Someone messed with our stuff!"

It turns out it's also past time for me to change my weight goal on Livestrong.com from "lose a pound a week" to "maintain my current weight." This seems like a crazy amount of food after nearly a year of trying to lose a pound a week. (Needless to say, I didn't always succeed. I have not lost 52 pounds.) Surely I will get used to eating this much again. It's not like I had any trouble with it before. :)
kitthebrave: (Default)
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you're digesting a fantastic dinner and doing your favorite relaxing activities, whatever those are. I'm very very thankful to have all of you in my life, right there on the other end of the Internet. ♥

The Turkey Trot was great fun. It took place in the little town that awelkin calls "The Texas Hogsmeade," and the 5K basically took us all through the town. The weather was gorgeous. We started off with the apparently traditional singalong of "Sweet Caroline" (I have no idea what this symbolizes, except that if you get a bunch of Texans together eventually you will end up singing along to something even if no one has had anything to drink yet) followed by the singing of the national anthem and HtB saying a prayer which had nothing to do with Neil Diamond.

I was just running along, not trying to blow the doors off anybody, and I thought I was running about 12 minute miles. Lo and behold, I finished in 28:48, which means I was doing 9 minute miles! I declined the post-race sausage tacos and beer, the sausage tacos because I am a vegetarian and the beer because, if I ever were going to drink beer at 9:30 am, it at least would not be Miller Lite.

(The sausage tacos were a sausage with a tortilla wrapped around it. There was a guy who was obviously not from around here, holding his taco, looking at it in an alarmed way, and saying, "I just can't do it.")

Then we did the Kid Print; I was doing the computer that captures the kids' pictures and fingerprints. It was pretty simple but after a while I got a headache from squinting at the screen in the bright sun, trying to see if the fingerprints had come out or not! Fortunately, by that time we were pretty much wrapping up.

We had steak (for HtB) and Gardein Turk'y (for me), mashed potatoes, roasted brussel sprouts with romano cheese, and sourdough bread. The Turk'y was not only yummy but also looked almost exactly like turkey; the only drawback was that you just can't replicate the mouth-feel you get from collagen. Yummy, yummy collagen.

The kittens on our porch brought us a bird for Thanksgiving. They very kindly left it on the sidewalk outside our back door. Hopefully this means they are getting tame enough that we'll be able to get them into a carrier and to the Humane Society soon!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. *hugs*
kitthebrave: (Default)
HtB got the Postcard of Disappointment from the job he applied for. We were both really hoping for this one. I know there's a great job out there for him somewhere, but it's not fun to have to wait for it.

We had a really fun astronomy field trip at the library for the fourth-graders at the nearby elementary school. A nature education center brought in an inflatable planetarium! (Picture a big hemispherical tent, only the walls are double-layered and there's a blower blowing air between the two layers. You turn on the blower, and there's a planetarium!) They did the star show, and we did the moon crater activity from our Observe the Moon night, a fun constellation craft (you draw the constellation with white crayon on black paper, and then glue on beads for stars), and we played comet ball outside. (To make a comet ball: stick a tennis ball in the toe of a sock, tie it off with a rubber band, and throw and catch from the sock, not the ball itself.) We had 100 kids come through in two hours. I was beat when we were done.

I can't believe how much there is to do for this ribbon cutting. I'm getting really nervous that I'm going to forget something. I need a calendar that has more than one page per day because my to-do lists are too long for the page.

HtB and I are driving to a town with a Whole Foods on Monday to pick up a Gardein Turk'y. I'll let you know how it is. :)

Hang in there, everyone! *hugs*
kitthebrave: (Default)
All of a sudden, I am exhausted. HtB says that now that summer is mostly over, I am relaxing enough to realize how tired I am.

$100,000 Grant Application of Improbability is basically done! The city grant coordinator will submit it tomorrow.

We have two full Lego League teams! Thank goodness I registered a second team when I did, or we would have had a bunch of disappointed kids yesterday. And some parents agreed to help coach. I will meet with them this coming Saturday and the teams will start practicing the week after that.

The anime club has discovered the Grant of Improbability, and are nothing daunted by the improbableness, or the timeline of a grant application. They want video editing software and an external hard drive before the local anime convention so they can make videos. I told them that the issue is not so much the software or the hard drive as it is a soundproof space for them to make videos in, since I think the rest of the library is looking forward to the peace and quiet of fall.

Scratch that. There isn't any quiet in the library in the fall, either. :)

Our laptop has been FedExed off to HP to fix, so I haven't been very good at keeping up with the flist, but I know some people could use *hugs*, so I'm sending them even when I'm not at the keyboard.
kitthebrave: (Default)
Keeping track of what I read...

Fiction:

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo - finally.



Nonfiction:

How I Killed Pluto, and Why it Had it Coming - best jacket blurb from Neil DeGrasse Tyson, saying he was going to forward all the hate mail he got from elementary-school children to this author.



Youth:

Into the Wild Nerd Yonder, by Julie Halpern
Agent Q or the Smell of Danger, a Pals in Peril tale by M. T. Anderson - how I love this series.
kitthebrave: (Default)
friends only

[livejournal.com profile] ashavah made the awesome banner. :) My entries are almost always flocked anyway, so I figured this made sense. If you're already on my flist you don't need to comment. Otherwise, comment to be added.
kitthebrave: (Default)
1. I finished Blackout. Aieeeee! It's the first part of a two-part book! It's a bigger cliffhanger than "Is Snape Evil"! How how how will I be able to wait until October to find out what happens? Is Mr. Dunworhty OK?

2. Here are my Blackout musings, under a cut in case anyone else is still reading the magnificence that is this book. Read more... )

3. HtB went to observe the police dispatch office last night. He had a great time. He's thinking about applying for a job as a dispatcher if one comes open. It's four months of training, but you get hired before you get trained, so he would be getting paid during that time. Now there just has to be an opening.

4. Got Dad's car back from Lady Friend and over to his house for the estate sale yesterday after aikido. HtB generously drove it back, all tobacco-smelling as it was. He got it detailed before he drove it, but it only seemed to add air-freshener smell on top of the tobacco smell. No one but a smoker is going to want this car.

5. DtB's Lady Friend really really wanted Dad to go to a Super Bowl party with her. I tried my best to find a way for this to happen, but Dad has gotten much weaker and less mobile. He took a header on Friday trying to get himself from the toilet to his wheelchair and ended up with a black eye and sore ribs. I knew HtB and I had no business trying to get Dad into or out of a car, so Lady Friend said she could get her step-grandson, who we will call The Thug, to do it. In vain did HtB and I try to explain that it is not just a matter of being able to lift a certain amount of weight, but being able to move DtB without hurting him or throwing your back out, and that The Thug did not have the necessary skills. I tried to hire one of the CNA's who was off duty to go get Dad to the game and back, to no avail. I had resigned myself to letting Dad go off with Lady Friend and The Thug if he wanted to, but The Thug was not available. *sigh*

6. I started feeling sick last night and thought it was just because I was tired. I slept thirteen hours and woke up with a really bad cough. So far today I have had inhaler, allergy meds, Advil, and cough syrup. I really hope that I'm better tomorrow.

I hope everyone had great weekends! Olympics start Friday, yay!
kitthebrave: (pflag)
OK, I love Amazon normally. But removing the rankings from GLBT books so that they don't appear in search results - even GLBT books with very little sexual content - (while leaving Playboy rankings) is just wrong. So... Googlebomb!

You can help Googlebomb Amazon (if you are interested in a little Internet civil disobedience) by posting this link (note: link itself contains adult concepts): Google Rank. So far, this definition, courtesy of the folks at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, is now the #1 result when you Google "Amazon rank."
kitthebrave: (Jess don't mess with me)
The phone was back this morning, but the internet was gone. I'll have to try to keep up with the flist on my breaks at work until Wednesday, when we'll supposedly get it back.

Noooo! They be taking my intarwebs!

Gotta try to get my homework done before I have to go to work.

Condolences to the flist on the death of Gordon Hinkley.

*hugs* everyone!
kitthebrave: (peachy)
If I'm away from the keyboard suddenly, it's because my oven has caught fire. :) I got some dark-brown Fimo clay and I'm making a wand out of a bamboo knitting needle. I wrapped the clay around the bottom of the knitting needle in a spiral (making sure to cover up the "US 10" mark) and burnished the clay with gold burnishing powder. I'm hoping that both the needle and the powder won't mind being baked at 225 for 30 minutes, which is what it takes to harden the Fimo. I'll let you know if it works!

In other news, AAAAAH! Dad the Brave gave me a gift certificate to his lady friend's clothing store so that I could buy nice-looking clothes for my Chicago presentation. (This is not The Lady Friend, who he's been dating for eight years. This is another lady friend. Speaking of which, why are elderly women always hitting on DtB? I realize objectively from looking at his college photos that he was a hottie of movie-star proportions, but (a) that was a long time ago and (b) more importantly, HE IS MY DAD. o_O) This is the second time DtB has given me a gift certificate to this place, and he never writes an amount on it. I just go in there and lady friend suggests clothes for me, which I try on and some of which I walk out with.

Today I got two cotton skirts, one very cute and one super-extremely-OMB cute, a very cool pair of black pants, and a t-shirt. I glanced down at the receipt when I was leaving and nearly passed out. I am not used to shopping in stores like this. I am not used to paying more than a single-digit amount for t-shirts, for one thing.

(So far, no oven fire.)

On the other hand, I have never had a pair of pants fit this well in my life before, and they actually make me look skinny. I could get used to it, maybe. But realistically, I'd probably be better off just learning how to sew. :)

I need to write my third book report for this unit in my Multicultural Lit class (speaking of which, go read Rain is Not My Indian Name, by Cynthia Leitich Smith!), but my brain is shot from writing the first two. Maybe I'll just work on my costume. Or vaccuum.

*hugs* everyone!
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