Monday, June 29, 2009

June 28 Plurk Friends

Today was a fun day for meeting lots of Plurk friends f2f. With the exception of Kevin and Michelle's son I'm "friends" with everyone in this picture. Kevin, on the floor, is the ultimate sharer and here he is handing out buttons and other goodies. From here we all went out to dinner for an evening of good food and fun.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

June 27 PD Session

June 27 PD Session, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

I spent today at the Edubloggercon. It's an unconference the day before the "real" conference begins. People were free to join any group and come and go from the groups. A variety of topics were covered. This session discussing best practices for professional development was one of my favorite sessions of the day. One person does and IETP (Individual Educational Technology Plan) with the teachers where they focus on one or two tech goals for the year. Another teacher does a potluck dinner once a month and the attendees come and eat and play with different tools on the computer. For those of you that are teachers what do you suggest for good professional development?

June 26 Adam's Inn

June 26 Adam's Inn, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Here's my spot at our bed and breakfast. I'm getting the tech bag unpacked and repacked for an early morning tomorrow to attend the Edubloggercon.

Friday, June 26, 2009

June 25 Vera

June 25 Vera, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Today was our last day of school. Once we were allowed to leave we headed over to one of the teacher's houses for a get together to celebrate our wonderful library aide that retired. Vera is 72 and loved talking to the children as they returned/checked out books. She decorated the library for all the holidays, kept a candy jar filled for the teachers and often stayed late making sure all the books were shelved and everything was ready for the librarian the next day. She was touched by her gifts and said it was a very bittersweet day.

June 24

June 24, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

I'm not sure what these flowers are on this tree but they looked pretty against the blue sky. I noticed them while sitting at a stop light. I only had time to take one shot and it was the only picture I took all day.

June 23 Pizza

June 23 Pizza, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

My daughter had lacrosse tonight and after the game it was the age old, last minute question; What's for dinner? We decided on pizza and stopped at the store for ingredients. We tried a different dough that was from a local place and it not only looked good but tasted great as well. I really need to work on getting back to a weekly menu this summer. I enjoy cooking when I know ahead of time what to cook and know we have the food on hand.

Monday, June 22, 2009

June 22 Awards

June 22 Awards, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Yesterday we had the end of season picnic for my daughter's lacrosse team. At the end the coaches spoke and this year awards were given. The coaches were new last year and didn't know they were suppose to have things to hand out. So, this year. my daughter received her blue letter for varsity and the lax stick pin as last year's gifts. Then for this year she got the varsity pin and the white letter for being a captain. She also received the scholar athlete pin again. The overall average for the scholar athletes was an impressive 94. Then the coach gave out four extra awards. One each for offense, defense, hustler, and school loyalty. My daughter works hard to do her best and isn't afraid to ask what she can do to improve her game. So she was thrilled when she was given the honor of the defensive MVP. It's hard to believe she'll be a senior next year and only have one season left on a high school team.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

June 21 My Dad

June 21 My Dad, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

I lost my dad to cancer about 2 ½ years ago. I miss him, especially so on Father’s Day. My dad was a good man. He taught me many things, mostly through just being a great role model.

Work Ethic-Early on in my life he instilled a good work ethic. He didn’t want me leaving for work with just enough time to walk in the door “on time.” I needed to be there early and make sure I was ready to start work on time and it didn’t matter if no one else did that.

Honesty-My parents always modeled being honest. If someone didn’t charge us enough for something my parents always let the person know and paid the full price. When I was in junior high my dad bought a franchise business. A few years later he went bankrupt. Some people said he lost it because he was too honest.

Involvement-My dad was involved in PTA, civic groups and home owners associations. He usually ended up being president of these groups because of his willingness to commit the time, his calm demeanor and easy speaking manor.

Acceptance-Life was not always easy but he accepted the difficult times with out complaint or blame.

Kindness-I don’t ever remember seeing my dad treat anyone with anything except kindness and respect.

Love-My parents were married for almost 60 years. I’m sure they had their ups and downs but they never showed it.

Forgiveness-I know I did things in my life that disappointed my dad. But he was able to let those things go and love me anyway.

I love you Dad. Thanks for helping me become the person I am today.

June 20 Strawberries

It's an annual tradition for my daughter and I to go berry picking this time of year. Usually when we get home I make jam, strawberry rhubarb muffins and sauce. This year we didn't pick as many and we just made muffins for Father's Day and we're just eating the rest. I have too many things to do right now to make jam and sauce. I'm hoping when I get back from NECC there were still be some berries and than I'll have time to make the yummy treats.

June 19 Peony

June 19 Peony, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Mmmm, the smell of peonies brings back memories of my childhood. We had peonies in our backyard. My mom would do her best to shake off the ants and bring a bouquet into the house. A few years ago I decided to carry on the tradition of peonies. I planted three different varieties with about a week's difference in their bloom time. This one is the plainest of the bunch but is also the most fragrant. What scents take you back to your childhood?

June 18 Violet

June 18 Violet, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

This is the violet my daughter won in the race on Sunday. Bold Party Girl is its name! The violets came from this great greenhouse-

June 17 Work and Rewards

June 17 Work and Rewards, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

I have two long "to do" lists. One for school work and one for house related work. The weekends and evenings lately have been busy and the lists just seem to keep growing. To help solve the problem I called in sick today and spent the entire day doing school work. I had two podcast to finish editing and get uploaded. That was the most time consuming task but there were others as well. On Monday I ordered an ipod Touch and it was ready for pick-up. I used that as my incentive to stay on task all day. Then at the end of the day I went back up to school for a reception for our PTA president that would be leaving us after many years of hard work. Then back to my lab to do some more work and then to a reception put on by the school board. After that I finally got my reward! I've got it working and a few aps downloaded but look forward to playing with it more this summer. I need to get that house list under control first...

June 16 Fresh from the Garden

A few weeks ago we started a new veggie garden. I planted 3 types of lettuce. Tonight it was so nice to go out there and pick the lettuce for our dinner salad. Mmmmm good!

June 15 Fancy Peony

This is the fanciest of my three peonies. Also the earliest to bloom and the least scented.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

June 14 Kids after the Run for the Violets

We headed to Dolgeville first thing this morning for the Run for the Violets. We've been going up there for about 7 years or so. It's a fun 5K race. As a spectator it's nice because we are able to walk and see the kids go by in four different places. Someone usually comes home with a prize. Today it was my daughter's turn. She got a violet for placing 2nd in her age group. My son came in 16th overall but 6th in his age group. There were only 2 in my daughter's group. I could have placed 3rd if I had run! Usually we hang out in town and have breakfast and visit the old shoe factory turned antique mall and other shops. But today the kids headed for home and my husband and I took off for a Corvette show at Ballston Lake. It was a beautiful drive and a fun day. I am definitely in summertime mode!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

June 13 Middle Ages Brewery

My husband and I made a trip to Syracuse today. We had to go pick up our daughter's shirt, lanyard and other goodies for her upcoming trip to Europe with the People to People group. She couldn't go because she was taking her ACT test. Once we had that task completed we made a few fun stops. One stop was at the Middle Ages Brewery. We were able to taste several beers and then selected one to fill up the growler we had brought along. We also picked up a goofy rug for one of my husband's good friends that's always getting us silly gifts. We ended our little trip with lunch at Dinosaur Barbque.

June 11 Flower Pillow

I bought this tiny vase in a little shop in OR two summers ago. I like picking up little treasures like this while vacationing. Something nice and small to bring back pleasant memories. I have quite a few tiny vases because I love to place them throughout the house in the summer with flowers from my garden. And it seems the tiny flowers last longer than the big showy ones. The dianthus work perfectly in this one. You can click here to see it filled.

June 10 Fitness Mill

The gym I go to is housed in this old mill. There are other businesses in here as well. Many of them fitness related; dance, karate, personal trainers. My son was the first member when he was working on gaining strength for hockey. Next, my daughter joined and finally I decided I might as well join too. My daughter was less than thrilled that I was joining and came up with two rules-first I could never go to her agility class. That class is all high school and college kids so that was no problem. Secondly, I couldn’t wear just a sports bra for a top. Ah, that was a no brainer. So I joined and have been a loyal member for years. While I was training for The Ride I quit going to the gym and boot camp. The last time I went my knee hurt for a week. I knew this was not the time for a sore knee so I stayed away. Last week I returned to boot camp. I was sore for a week! I expected some of it but not my legs! Today I felt good enough to return. When we started sit ups I realized some muscles were still sore and I struggled. Al, the instructor loves to pick on people but has always left me alone until today. From across the room he yells I see someone has been away from the gym a little too long. I looked his way and he was looking right at me with a big smile on his face. Later as we reentered the room from running some laps he claimed he wasn’t talking about me, really he said again with that big grin. I just laughed and knew he was right, I had been away too long. Next year, if my knee hurts during training I’ll keep going and just talk to him and find out what I need to do differently. He’s great about that. Here’s hoping I’m not so sore this week!

June 9 Free Plant

June 9 Free Plant, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

When I walked down to my room today this treasure was sitting outside my door. On Sunday I mentioned to my friend that I love Bleeding Hearts but hate to buy them because I have such a hard time getting them to grow. She told me to never buy one. Hers grow out of the cracks of the brick wall and everywhere else and she just tosses them out! So, now I have a new plant to add to my garden. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this one will grow. This weekend I will dig up some of my invasive plants and take them up to her house since she’s working on putting in a new rock garden. They’ll work well for that. It’s nice doing plant exchanges.

Monday, June 8, 2009

June 8 Seed Heads

June 8 Seed Heads, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

It was getting dark when I realized I hadn't taken a picture yet. I grabbed the camera and tripod and headed out to the garden. Focusing on something small wasn't working so I returned to the poppies. Since I just took a flower yesterday I went with the seed head today.

June 7 Poppy

June 7 Poppy, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

The poppies are almost done so I decided to go with this for my picture today. I think this is my nicest capture so far of the poppy. The colors are rich and sharp, IMHO. I hate to see them go, they add so much color and pizazz to the garden. If I'm lucky I'll get a second smaller bloom later in the summer.

June 6 Nurseries

June 6 Nurseries, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Today I went with a good friend to Oneonta to participate in a bike ride along with her daughter. The cause was Opportunities for Ostego. The entry fees went towards the food bank, I believe. It ended up being a beautiful day and a beautiful 35 mile ride. It was a hilly course but we all survived. After the ride and a tasty lunch thanks to Brooks bar-b-que we headed for home. But along the way we made a few stops. Besides biking we both enjoy working in our gardens and drinking wine. So, we stopped at two nurseries and loaded up the back seat with new plants. We loved these hanging baskets but passed on that temptation. We also stopped at the Bear Pond Winery as well for a tasting and we each purchased a couple of bottles to take home and enjoy. It was a fun relaxing day which is just what we needed before heading into the rat race of the last few weeks of school!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

June 5 Farm Fest

June 5 Farm Fest, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Today almost 1000 3rd-5th graders visited this farm for Farm Fest. Farmers gathered here at the largest family owned dairy farm in the county to teach the children about farm life and where their food comes from. I did not attend but after school I took my daughter, seen walking here, and we headed up to check out the events for the general public. We sampled some good food and recieved a great education from the tractor driver that drove us around the "block". One of my student's families owns the farm and as a 5th grader she is hoping the farm will still be there when she graduates from college so she can help run it. But she knows economically it's hard to keep the farm going and it's possible that won't happen. Farm kids have some of the best work habits and it's because of what they're expected to do to help out at home. I hope things improve soon for the family run farms and that it's still there for her. She will make a great farmer.

June 4 Saranac Thursday

After i finished teaching my PD class tonight I sat down to get some report card grades entered before heading home. After I did a couple of classes I checked my phone and I had a message from my husband saying he was at Saranac Thursday. I quickly finished up a few more grades and then headed down to join him. The local brewery holds Saranac Thursdays all summer long. Local bands play and friends gather to drink a variety of the great Saranac products and enjoy the nice weather. When it's over many people wander down the road to eat from a street vendor or to visit the local bars. We headed home early and the joined our kids in going out for ice cream for dinner!

June 3 Plant Hanger

Just a picture of my favorite plant hanger. We picked it up at one of the street vendors at Bouckville a few years ago.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

June 2 Busy Bee

June 2 Busy Bee, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

Recently I saw a bee shot on one of the flickr groups and it gave me an incentive to try and capture one a little harder this summer. I've tried before but haven't really put much effort into it. Today I began my quest. I probably took 20 or so pictures of this guy and deleted all but 3. This was my favorite of the day. I especially like the detail in its wing.

Monday, June 1, 2009

June 1 School Work

June 1 School Work, originally uploaded by ElementaryTechTeacher.

I'm back to listing 3 daily goals on Plurk like many of us did last summer. One of today's goals was to get one 1st grade podcast finished and posted online. The first graders not only talked a lot but the ummmed and paused a lot too. So that means lots of editing time for me! The Macbook belongs to the school. Garageband and the photos work but most everything else is blocked so I set my computer up next to it so I can check in with Plurk every once in awhile. And yes I got all 4 goals done today.

May 31 Family Bike Ride

Today was our first family bike ride of the season. We rode the canal trail from Oriskany to Rome. When we got to Rome we rode to Fort Stanwix and walked around for a bit. Then headed back for home. The wind was very strong and it made for a creepy feeling to be biking along a trail covered with trees. However, we stayed safe and enjoyed our trip. It's nice to know that our kids, ages 16 and 20, still like to do things with their parents!