You only say that cause no one ever has...

You only say that cause no one ever has...

Friday, May 25, 2012

Fear of Failure

I have been considering going back to school.
My husband is about to graduate with his Bachelors degree and then will continue on to a Masters and eventually I am sure he will get a Doctorate and so on and so on.
I am extremely proud of him. It has taken 17 years for him to get here but he has made it. He has been on the Dean's list for most semesters and if he misses graduating with honors it will be by .01, which devastating, still amazes me that he was able to take 18 hours and work over 40 hours a week.
My oldest daughter will be starting college classes by January. She will only be 15 but is ready.
Again I am considering classes for myself.
My husband and I will be celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary 2 days before his graduation. We have 3 children who I homeschool and I coach gymnastics 3-4 nights a week. In those 15 years I have thought about school for myself only a handful of times. Taking care of my kids and getting my husband through school have been top priority for me.
But if I want to be completely honest what has stopped me all these years has been fear of failure.
I am a fairly intelligent person but it has been SO long since I took a class and even when I was in high school I was always afraid to fail.
If I can convince myself to actually take the plunge I figure I will start off slow and maybe take some classes with my daughter. Get the basics out of the way and get back into the groove of school and GASP homework.
I have been looking at actual class lists and degree programs figuring out what I would actually want to study. I think I will fill out a fasfa this weekend to see if we could get financial aide. 
This is a step in the right direction.
Trying to face my fear and do it anyway. :/

Friday, February 3, 2012

Plane Side honors part 2 with pictures

With it being the one year anniversary of the plane side honors I decided to revisit the post and add the pictures.

The day was extremely cold and we were still digging out from the blizzard that had happened 3 days before. My father, Jeremy, the girls and I all met at the funeral home. They drove us out to the airport and we met with our casualty assistant officer. He explained everything that would happen and kept track of the time.

Waiting at the security tower.
 Once the plane was close to landing we all piled into the cars and the security led us to the tarmac.

Following the hearse and security
 We waited in the car while the plane got into position. Once it was coming around we got out to watch. I remember it being so loud and being so cold.

The plane coming around
 Once the plane was in position the Honor Guard got their instructions and lined up to march to the plane.

Honor Guard members
I had never met these men and women before and will probably never meet them again but I was so thankful for the service they provided.

Lined up ready to march.
After the plane was stopped they hooked a ramp to the bay doors. When that was in place the honor guard marched over and lined up at the end of the ramp.

Marching to the plane
Two soldiers dressed in acu's climbed up the ramp to prep the casket. They unpacked it from the crate it was shipped in to protect it and wrapped it in the American flag.

Wrapping the casket with the flag.
As the casket was lowered down the ramp everyone, and I mean everyone, stopped what they were doing. The Honor Guard saluted and many of the airport employees saluted too.

Staff Sgt Joshua Melocik is in the front. He was a member of Matt's platoon and brought him home for us.
The Honor Guard proceeded to pick up the casket and carry it across the tarmac to the hearse.

Solemn walk.

Loading the casket into the hearse.
They filed past us and it was a true honor to see how respectful everyone was. These men and women who had never even met my brother had tears and were struggling to keep themselves together.

The drive back to the funeral home was right during rush hour. I remember sitting in the car and just wanting this to be over.

View from the family car.

We were given a letter from Delta and it included what was told to the passengers (this one was read when they transferred planes in North Carolina but the passengers at KCI were read something similar). Here is what it said:

Ladies and Gentlemen.
We would like to share with you that on today's flight is Army Staff Sergeant Joshua Melocik who had the difficult yet honorable task of escorting a deceased fellowserviceman on his final journey home to Missouri.
In a few moments members of the local USO Honors Support team, many of whom are veterans themselves, and the North Carolina National Guard Funeral Memorial Unit will join Staff Sergeant Melocik to form an Honor Guard as our fallen hero is transferred on to the aircraft.
Freedom is not free.
We invite you to remain silent during the transfer as a show of respect and gratitude for our fallen comrade's commitment and service to our country.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My Daughter interviews an author - The Carnivorous Herbivore: Everything Under The Sun, an interview with S. R. ...

My daughter has her own blog and has been writing reviews for various books she has read (plus silly posts and some school essays). This has been a fun way to do book reports for school and a nice way for her to improve her writing. I have noticed a marked improvement from the first review she wrote to this last one.

A few weeks ago an author sent out a request on Twitter needing middle grade/young adult book blog reviewers. I contacted and her and let her know my daughter would be interested.
Bri was able to get an advance reader copy of the book and then interview the author. Check out her blog :)
The Carnivorous Herbivore: Everything Under The Sun, an interview with S. R. ...: On The Bright Side 1. What was your inspiration for writing On the Bright Side ? I have an obsession with death. With all the dark ...

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Some Favorite Pics of 2011 :)

 I went through photos yesterday and these were a few of my favorites from last year. I will add Disney pics later but I have decided to try and post more photos and blog more often than I did last year. I will also try and post happy posts more often too. :) This pic is my sweet kitty kitty. He really isn't very nice to anyone but me ;)

 This is my baby girl finding out that hot glue guns are HOT. We were spending an afternoon doing crafts before Christmas. The girls made ornaments and wrote letters to Santa.

 Our middle daughter REALLY wanted an iPod touch. To the point that she was saving her money. We had told her she wasn't allowed to get one until she was 14. We lied ;)

 My eldest daughter always asks for interesting things for Christmas. This year she wanted a loft bed. She truly thought there was no way she would get one and unfortunately we were unable to have it completely ready for her on the actual morning. My father in law (who is a wonderful man) was building it for her so my husband took a picture of it on his phone. We wrapped a note that said "Ask daddy to show you his phone." This was her reaction to the picture :)

                                          Bri as Jack Sparrow for Halloween

                                          JJ as a fall fairy for Halloween

Finally, my very favorite picture from the ones I went through yesterday. Here is my baby girl crawling for BRAINS on Halloween.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Divergent (Divergent, #1)Divergent by Veronica Roth

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This review MAY be SLIGHTLY spoilery - I am going to try and keep it clean of spoilers but may fail. You have been forewarned! :)

"In Beatrice Prior's dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue—Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is—she can't have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.
During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are—and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she's chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she's kept hidden from everyone because she's been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves… or it might destroy her.

Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series—dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance." - From the inside cover

I read this book right after it came out and it had taken me this long to finally write a review. First - I LOVED this book. I loved the world Veronica Roth had created. I love that it is set in a dystopian Chicago (a place I am familiar with, as my family is all from there so it was fun reading about landmarks i know well). I love the idea of factions and that they tried to make a Utopian society but instead have turned in to a true dystopian world. I also love that she has left us with many questions at the end of the first book.

I was able to see traits from each of the different factions in myself. The choice that the characters have to make about their lives made me evaluate what I hold to be more important. Honesty? Selflessness? Bravery? Peaceful? Or Intelligence? Which would you choose? I am not sure that I could.

Tris is a very confused young lady in the beginning. Should she stay in Abnegation with her family or chose a different path? She never feels "good" enough to be where she is now. I think that many readers can relate to that feeling of disappointing the world around us.

Once she makes her decision and moves on with her life we are shown a new world and experience it all through Tris's eyes. Everything she has been taught comes into question. What is "right" and what is "wrong". Each faction has their secrets and in the first book we are shown some from only 3 of the 5. It will interesting to see more of the world in the next book.

There is a love story thrown in but I don't feel it overwhelms the story as I have found in many young adult books. I enjoyed the mystery of Four and the resolution of the story and I feel they compliment each other very well. Neither is perfect and their flaws make them more real to me. I felt the truly needed each other.

There is some violence that may offend more sensitive readers but I truly felt it was needed in this story. Veronica Roth did a great job detailing the action without making it gruesome. If you have read the Hunger Games this is much more tame.

I have already reread this one at least 3 times and am waiting very impatiently for the next book - Insurgent.

View all my reviews

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Lesson Learned - I'm Not 18 Anymore

The temp was 65 degrees today so as a treat to my girls I decided we would go to the park. I love that being homeschoolers I can take advantage of this beautiful weather. Instead of going to our normal park we thought we would try out a different one with a bigger skateboard area. Our local one has a nice enough spot but this one offered more options.

Being the "cool" mom that I am, I also decided that I would grab my brother's board and give it a shot. Hey, I used to ride too!

My girls thought this was a pretty cool idea but insisted I grab the helmet too. Psshhhhaaa! In MY day we didn't wear stinkin helmets. Duh!! Only nerds wore those! But to be a "good" example, I sucked it up and grabbed it (remember this fact because it becomes important later).

Bri grabbed her gear and board, JJ got her bike, and Morgan chose to rollerblade (using MY rollerblades from my 16th birthday ;). We loaded up the car and headed out. It took us about 10 minutes to get there and we were pleasantly surprised to find no one else there.  The girls were thrilled, Bri especially as she hates to ride in front of other people.

JJ was the first out and riding since she didn't have any extra gear to put on besides her helmet. She took to the ramps and was flying. I helped Morgan get her blades on and then gave her some pointers about using them. Bri was still getting all her safety gear on. I slapped on the helmet and took off, getting my bearings. After a minute JJ started egging me on to try one of the smaller ramps. I took a look and decided it wasn't THAT big and hey I could go to the top and get a better feel for it.

I got to the top and looked down. And Down. And Down. (Ok, it wasn't really that high) Morgan and JJ were at this point both cheering me on. So I went for it. I figured I had done bigger ramps before, I could handle this, PLUS I had a helmet on. What was the worst that could happen?

Down I went and then "down" I went. I forgot some fundamental rules about skateboarding (don't lean forward). The board hit the bottom of the ramp and I went off. Luckily I did have the helmet on or I would have conked my noggin. In the end I wound up with a scraped and bruised arm, very bruised thumb, and soar hip. Not too bad considering.

Now the point about the helmet. The whole accident was my kids fault. IF they hadn't insisted I wear a helmet I would NEVER have attempted going down the ramp ;)

So new rule for 2012 - No more crashing.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Around the World at The Big Biscuit

My husband and I went on a date yesterday morning. It was the last day of his vacation and we thought we would make the most of it. While waiting for our food we decided to entertain ourselves.
First we built castles out of the jam and creamers and attacked with sugar packets. After one of the castles fell we noticed how it resembled Stonehenge

                                      Next we decided to visit the Leaning Tower of Creamer


                                           We took a quick trip to London and saw Big Ben

                                         Next came Paris where we saw the Eiffel Tower

                                        Finally we finished up with the Great Wall of China

Hope you enjoyed the trip, I know my husband and I did :)