Embarrassing Moment

Hmmmm. Good topic. Here are a few:

as an acolyte, I lost my flame…at the altar….mom saved me by tossing her lighter!
had a southern accent, since lost, and was the new kid in a middle school in California… they don’t say ya’ll, thank you, or ma’am.
bible camp, trust games, the only one who couldn’t fall backwards into the groups’ arms. Still have trust issues.
first time having new boyfriend to dinner at my house with my smalll child…. he says, “I only live a few streets over.” my kid says, “I know, we’ve ridden past your house a bunch of times”

I’m sure I have embarrassed myself many more times, and embarrassed my family even more. Oh, well!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Favorite City

Hmmmm, this is a good one. http://katieslifejourney.blogspot.com/ Day 22, I’ve been doing pretty well, but not an A+ on this challenge.

I love New York City, but while I am there I am usually very anxious and either hot, cold, or wet. I usually have a panic attack or two while there. But the thoughts of it afterwards are exhilarating.

San Francisco is awesome. I love it everytime. I guess it wins. But there are so many wonderful cities! I loved London, and hope to go back. It had a similar feel to NYC, only there are these gorgeous areas of row houses on curves, and the way the people talk, and they have a freaking palace (or two). New Orleans is fun. I”m kind of over it, however. We might go in January, Scott has business there, and it would be a free high end hotel, and a break, so maybe.

Is Monterey a city? A small one I guess. I love it. Is Fredericksburg a city? I like it enough. I find it odd that I will probably stay here the rest of my life barring a major life changing event.

Farmville. It exists. It’s a city. Between Captain Farmville in white tights and neon pink waving various flags at traffic at Wal-Mart, and nothing to do on Sundays besides church, and how there are a high number of gruesome murders for such a small town, it is a cool place. However, if my parents and sister didn’t live there, I’d never go there on purpose.

D.C. is probably number 2 for me. The museums, the architecture, the history, it’s a great city. If I was going to live in a city, I’d pick D.C. (with being rich enough for vacations elsewhere).

I love cities, but being out in the country this past weekend, not hearing any traffic, seeing stars, was also nice.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Something I Miss…

Continuing on the 30 day blog challenge from http://katieslifejourney.blogspot.com/

You know it can’t be just one thing….

I miss MY Katie.  Can’t even write about it.  Too sensitive.

I miss sunsets on the Pacific.

I miss tickles from my Grampa.

I miss the days when my baby was a baby.

I miss John Belushi on SNL.

I miss Walter Cronkite on the news.  “And that’s the way it is…”

I miss having a principal who was better at discipline.

I miss my summer days.

I miss my cousin Elizabeth.  I think we would have been great friends by now.

I miss the fog. I love fog.

I miss iceplant.

I miss Frankies, the place for ribs.   Luckily, I can actually get some of this if I get to VA Beach.

I miss spending the day on my bike, wearing roller skates, from sun up to past sun down – no helmet, no pads, no adults, and seriously Jackass style stunts…. why do you think I am covered in scars and have effed up teeth?!!!

Of all of that, if I could pick one, it would be my Grampa.  He deserves his own post.  Stay tuned.  I’ll be working on the history of Grampa next.  In the meanwhile, enjoy a Pep-O-Mint.   Jeebus, how can I get so sad over missng my Grampa this many years later?

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off


and not perseverating….

I started the 30 day blog challenge, but the topics turned religious, so I am rebelling!  Ha, I am a rebel.  Today should be something I am looking forward to, or I guess some things I am looking forward to….so here are a few:

snow days!

ice days!


I am sore need of a day off.  I don’t feel well, and would love to have a lie in (lye?) and a day to clean up and get organized – like put away summer clothes and find holiday decorations.  Not likely to actually decorate.  Lack of belief + too many cats = why bother?  But I do love the decorations and the music and the food of the holidays.  Since most of it has pagan origins, I guess I can still enjoy.

Looking forward to going to Farmville this weekend.  It’s nice to see my folks and to be lazy, eat, talk, and even smoke (a cigarette!  scandalous).  And my New Yorkers!!!!!!!! and Food and Wine Mag!!! and my mom is…..hold on to your wigs and keys:  getting HIGH speed internet!  And it’s only 2010!  Maybe we’ll carve a pumpkin.  Or blow one up. And my mom is making betchbittle soup.  Maybe we’ll walk in the woods.  Might see a bear!

Teaching is, in a word, hard.  But according to Choukri, if it is worth doing, than it is going to be hard.  Such wisdom from a 12 year old.  How do I get them to buy in?  To get interested?  To try?  Maybe I should ask Tony Danza.

On perseverating:  Scott is making bacon.  I know.  Why?  I don’t really know.  He likes to do weird projects.  He’s on pork belly #2, which is curing in the fridge now.  He has talked about bacon and nothing else for 3 weeks now.  He thinks about it so much, he even got tired of thinking about it himself.  He still didn’t stop.  I made him take the autism quiz on facebook.  He is autistic, mild Aspberger’s Syndrome.  I know it.  Facebook knows it.  He knows it.  And, now so do you.  I don’t love him any less.  But sometimes, I just want to change the fucking subject.  I should have known when he and Tommy (former aspie student of mine) met and talked endlessly for hours.  The benefits to this are that he can solve problems that no one else even bothers to try to solve.  And social skills can be acquired (and have) so that just a few quirks remain.  We need people like this in the world to tackle the big things.  I’m willing to bet that Einstein, and Edison both were Aspies.

Speaking of Choukri, I love so many of my students.  Tomorrow is B day, so I get to see many of my faves.  Carlos, who I’ve called Oscar more than Carlos, Erron whose awkwardness is palpable, adorable and hopefully will pass.  Dimas, who I hope will relax and laugh and smile soon, Bobby, who is so attentive, even Elease, who WILL be wrangled.  Oh. Yes. She. Will.   Then comes Arwen, cue Twilight Zone music, Emmanuel – I’m not picking on you, Karanbir (pronounced car and beer) who is way smarter than me and has already learned the entire course, Faiz, who probably needs a sick day, too, but he comes in anyway and does every silly extra credit thing I talk about, Tyler, who can have all my Milk Duds any day, Hamza who is hilarious, and I just love me a BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE DAAYYYYYYY!!!

Persevering….hoping to get the A days down.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Blog Marathon…bible verses?

Ok,  I started this 30 day blog thing, and I am glad I did, however, I’m going to have to just come up with more of my own topics.  I can’t write about what I believe, or the bible.  Sorry.

That’s me in the corner
That’s me in the spotlight
Losing my religion

I don’t know when or how it happened but, somehow I became a non-believer.  Organized religion has turned me off in a big way, probably a lot because of politics.  And history.   It is still to murky for me to articulate.  I like the service, rituals and thoughts, but the beliefs are hard for me now.

As for the bible, I have a few copies, and from bible camp, I know that my favorite verse is from Ecclesiastes 3:16 – for everything there is a season….  But what is the bible?  Who wrote it? When?  Why? How?   As a primary source, it works only slightly.

I don’t think people need a text or a bible to tell them how to treat each other.  I think the bible contradicts itself too much to be a text to follow as a rule book.  I think the bible is used too often to excuse bad behavior.

A student of mine this year talks back everyday.  She is mean, nasty and hateful.  Her mother excuses it with, “We come from a Christian home.”  Today, that same girl said to me:  “That wasn’t attitude, I talk like that all the time to my mom.”  I told her I would be sure to tell her mom how she felt.  She said, “Go ahead.  I ain’t got no attitude.”  How “Christian” is it to lie?  I don’t mean the child.  I mean the mother.  She tries to portray a “Christian home” when what she has is a foul mouthed adolescent with no real rules or expectations.

I wish I could say to them, “That’s okay, treat people like shit.  In the end you’ll be forgiven, right?  So keep on. ”  I’ll stick to one belief: The Golden Rule.  It works.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Day 11….TV shows

Ok, I love this topic. link

I love TV.  I am so old that I’ve been watching my whole life.  There was a few years when I was poor and Katie was little that we had no TV but just videos, but I don’t think I could ever go back.  So here’s what I watch:

PBS British shows mostly.  These are one of the few genres that Scott and I both enjoy.  Although he is more into Dr. Who than I.  We love British comedy.  And, I am NOT Hyacinth.

Reality:   Real Housewives – and in this order of preference:  NY, NJ, LA, DC, ATL. Flipping Out, Bethenny, and most everything on Bravo.

HGTV:  House Hunters Int’l, Divine Design, and some others once in a while.

Food TV:  all except Iron Chef and Unwrapped.  Scott likes them, but not me.  My favorite chefs: Barefoot Contessa, Giada, Tyler Florence (swoon), Bobby Flay (!), and I watch a bunch of the others (they are on Sunday mornings when I am reading the paper and grading/planning).

RetroTV:  Hitchcock.

Garbage:  Bridezillas, Court TV, Wife Swap….Oprah, Dr. Phil – but I don’t DVR them.  I really don’t, not anymore anyway.

In summer I am much worse.  During school, I only catch a few things, and my latest weird things are the British show “Come Dine With Me” and old Julia Child.

I loathe:  Spongebob – annoying;  Network – condescending.

Another thing I don’t like is that I don’t watch a lot of the popular stuff so I can’t have those water cooler talks as I am out of the loop.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

A Picture of My Friends…

Ok, so I am still blogging everyday, but I don’t have energy to find a picture of my friends.  For that, you can go to my Facebook page (Ellen Smith Alden) and friend me, and then you can see all my friends.

Facebook has been awesome for me.  I have found friends from middle school (we called it Jr. High), high school – all the way from California, a good friend from high school who lived in my neighborhood in gorgeous California somehow made it to about 3 miles away from me here in Podunk, Virginia (but won’t meet me for coffeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee).  Trust me, Ruth, I am so fat and old that I would not be shocked or appalled at any appearance, but to reconnect and heal old wounds (not from you) from those years would really help me come full circle.  Finding my friend from Kemps Landing was also awesome as we are both teachers.  Since I went to 11 different schools, and moved quite a bit, long term friendships were hard to form, and those short term ones that were memorable are special to me.

On friendship in general, I am not a really good friend in action.  I think about my friends a lot.  I worry, for example about Staci and Marie, who are facing a tough life crisis.  I think about them everyday, but I don’t really DO anything.  Doro, for example, who I admire and aspire to be more like, I think of everyday, but don’t call as I should because I am so wrapped up in and exhausted from my own life, and in the summer such a hermit…but it doesn’t mean I value it any less.  Robyn, who I miss dearly but whose lack of internet presence, and whose political views have offended me, I have lost touch sort of.  Wendy, whose Christmas card I wrote fell behind Scott’s desk and I didn’t find until June, and who will probably not send me her beautiful holiday letter/picture/card anymore, I am sad,  she was such a good buddy in college.  It is just now this second that I realized that I am just like my daughter (errr vice versa)  We are ONE PERSON AT A TIME people.

So often I complained about how Katie could only have one person in her life at a time, and it hurt when you were not that ONE.  REVELATION!  I figured out where she got that.

On friendship, there really are only two people who are the rock solid best.  My mom, and Scott.  Scott will understand that if it came down to choosing between those two, he would be second, and that is perfectly fine.   I am lucky to still have my mom, and to have a close friendship with, although I know I annoy her with my dinnertime phone calls.  If I could boil down all my life wishes, the travel, the experiences, the fun, the food, the wine, everything, I would boil it all down to this:  My life wish is that my friendship with my mom is duplicated in a friendship with my daughter who I love and cherish dearly.    I am fiercely proud of my daughter, and I am on a mission to heal the wounds of the past and move into something closer to what I have with my mom.  My mom and I were able to heal from terrible let-downs and hurts and I am hoping for that same thing.

So, that is a “picture” of my friends.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

A Place I’ve Traveled to….

Monterey/Carmel California.   The most beautiful, temperate place on Earth.  I am in love with California, and would move back there in a heartbeat if I could bring my friends and family (and a huge bank account) with me.  That doesn’t seem on the horizon anytime soon, so I’ll settle for gazing at pictures, and perhaps a visit in the near future.  I am very lucky to have been to all 48 contiguous states and all over Europe (as a baby) and to England so far.  Next Europe trip I hope to see the Mediterranean countries – Spain, Italy, Greece, Morocco.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off

Favorite Movies

Still doing this blog thing for 30 days at Katie’s life Journey.

Who doesn't love Doris Day?

My favorite movies are probably mostly really old.  But here goes.

Gone With the Wind

The Great Gatsby


Anything by Alfred Hitchcock – except not a fan of Psycho.

Cider House Rules

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

The Wizard of Oz

To Kill a Mockingbird

Romeo and Juliet (the late 60’s version)

Farenheit 9/11

Four Weddings and a Funeral

Death at a Funeral (the British version)

All the Harry Potters

All the old Pink Panthers

Dirty, Rotten Scoundrels

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

All the old Doris Day movies.

So, you see, mostly old.  Mostly not with Vince Vaughan or other modern actors – but I did like Wedding Crashers and the The Break Up…  My criteria is simple, if I’ll watch it again and again, it’s on my list.  Also, certain actors,  Hugh Grant, Steve Martin, Doris Day, Peter Sellers, Gregory Peck, Cary Grant.   It they are in it, I love it.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Day 6: Picture of something that makes me happy…

Fog rolling in on the Monterey Bay….

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off