Sunday, February 28, 2010


Well, another year of KMEA is in the books.   I usually come back from Wichita energized and ready to finish out the school year.  This year I don't feel as upbeat and ready to conquer the end of the year.  Maybe it is because of the all the changes being made.   I talked to a lot of people this weekend and there are a lot of other schools in the same boat.  It just seems somewhat ironic that we get together to celebrate the joys of getting to teach music when we are all fighting for our programs.  I was excited to learn that one of my college buddies is heading back this direction to teach.  He has been in the far reaches of south western Kansas for a long time and it will be nice to have him back in civilization.  He also considering living in town which would be super sweet! 

A good time was had by all Friday night at the Broadview.  There is nothing better than music teacher kareoke!!!!  We sang, we line danced, a good time was had by all.  We finally made it back over to the Hyatt at around 2 am.  Needless to say I did not make it to the 8:00 session Saturday morning.  The drive home was exceptionally long this year, partly due to me being a little tired and partly due to just not wanting to go back to reality.  Unfortunately, reality cannot be stopped so its off to do laundry and get some shut eye.  Until next time........

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Random Dozen


1. Have you ever fired a gun or shot a bow and arrow?  Oh heck yes.  Shooting bow and arrow was one of the best parts of Girl Scout Camp.  My dad has let me shoot a couple of times although most of my gun time has been logged with a pellet gun shooting at snapping turtles in the pond.

2. Do you know where your childhood best friends are?  Lesley is in Greenville, Michel is still in Marion.

3. Do you usually arrive early, late, or on time? I am usually on time or a little early.

4. Are you more of a New York or California type?  hmmm....I'm gonna have to go with neither.  There are way too many people in both places for my taste.  If forced to choose one though it would probably be New York somewhere, up in the mountains where there are no earthquakes.

5. Do you have a special ring tone?  Yep, Garth Brooks' "Against the Grain"

6. What is your favorite type of chip?  I love potato chips, but they have to be the wavy kind.  If they are there, I will eat them which is why I very rarely ever buy them.

7. Best comedy you've ever seen is .... Probably either "Major League" or "Bull Durham"

8. Have you ever cut your own hair? To quote Dr. Phil, "How'd that work for ya?"  I try to avoid it at all costs.  I can't even cut a straight line!

9. If you were going to have an extreme makeover, would you rather it be about your house or your personal self?  Definitely the house just to get it done!!!

10. Are you allergic to anything?  Don't laugh but I think I am allergic to North Central Kansas, or at least something up here that is not down south.  I clear up as soon as I cross I-70.

11. Why is it so hard to change?  Change takes you out of your comfort zone.  It brings the unknown and the unexpected.  

12. One last question dedicated to February love: CS Lewis said, "To love is to be vulnerable." Please share one example of that assertion or share any thought you'd like to about this topic. This for me is the hardest part about being a teacher.  You put it out there for your students every day.  There are kids that are going to disappoint you and call you every name in the book and walk out the door.  Unfortunately, this has made me a bit gun shy when it comes to making an investment in a student.    No matter how many times I tell myself it was nothing personal, it is just their way of dealing with things because they have made themselves vulnerable and have gotten burned and this is their way of making sure they don't get hurt again, it still leaves scars.

Well, I am off to pack for my trip to KMEA.  The one of two times a year that I get to hang out with my own kind.  There is probably a reason why they don't let us music folk get together more than once or twice a year.   PARTY AT THE BROADVIEW!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Random Dozen

1. If you could compete in one Olympic event (not necessarily winter sports) what would it be?
 I'm going to have to go with anything that would not require any of the following:  short shorts, tights, bodysuits, swimsuit, extreme heat, or extreme cold.  The only that leaves is maybe badmitton??
2. Do remember a specific Olympic moment from the past?
Mary Lou Retton getting a perfect ten and who can forget Keri Strug's one legged landing!!

3. Have you ever known anyone who competed in the Olympics? Nope
4. If everyday activities were Olympic-worthy, which activity would you have a gold medal in?
 Farmville!!! (or getting out of bed)

5. Do you know anything about your ethnic heritage?  I have German/Prussian roots from all sides.  Although the Helmers did come through Canada they weren't there long enough for me to consider myself Canadian.

6. Do you enjoy sleeping late?  Um, yeah.  It usually only happens once a week though.
7. Have you ever performed CPR on anyone? Do you know how? Nope and Nope.
8. Name one country you'd like to visit and explain why.  I would like to go to Austria,  mostly for the architecture and the music history.
9. Have you ever fixed up a couple romantically?  No, I don't think so....
10. What is the last book you read?  I failed miserably at trying to read "The Pilgrim's Progress."  Otherwise it was probably something by Dan Brown.
11. Do you enjoy sleeping late? NO, YOU write the question! How's that for random??  What is the coolest thing you've done today?  I just got done talking to my four year old niece over Skype.  Isn't technology great!!!!!
12. What is your favorite meal at your favorite restaurant?  Love Danny's Chicken Fried Steak but will pretty much eat Chicken Fried Steak anywhere.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Dreams of Warmer Weather

This is Hi Corbett Field in Tucson, Arizona.  I took this picture on our Spring Training trip to Arizona last March.  This is where some of the movie "Major League" was filmed.  "Major League" is one of those movies that if it is on, the channel surfing stops and we watch.  They actually had a scene in that neither one of us had never seen, which is strange because we both thought that we had seen every watered-down, made okay for young TV viewer, versions ever made.  We were wrong.  Kudos to Comedy Central for the changed scene.

Today our upstairs washing machine got fixed.  Bless you Mr. Repairman, I honestly thought the poor thing was dead.  It is a stack unit that we bought used probably 9 or 10 years ago.  I will admit, I was getting excited at the prospect of getting a new energy/water efficient unit to go upstairs, not because I enjoy doing laundry, it is just the household chore with the least weird smells connected to it.  

So now that we have saved all this money not buying a new washer and dryer, hubby has his eyes set on warmer and sunnier climates.  "We could use all the money we just saved to go back to Arizona!"  While my bones ache with the toll winter has taken on them my cheaper, more logical side seems to be taking hold.  "No, we need to save that money to replace the flat roof so we don't have water dripping on what will hopefully be my newly finished hallway floor when it starts raining" (because we all know its coming, its Kansas for crying out loud).  

Then I look at the pictures from last Spring Break.  Orange trees.............
being so close to Mark Teahen I could almost reach out and touch him..........
and sun, lots and lots of sunshine.  Hmmm.....maybe the roof can wait..........

Monday, February 8, 2010

Carrot Clarinet

This video was sent to me through a band director e-group.  The guy in the video is somewhat of a dork, but his skill with a carrot is admirable.  I don't know what would motivate someone to figure this out or even attempt making an instrument out of a carrot.  This then lead to watching a video titled "Vegetable Orchestra" which was absolutely amazing.  A definite "must watch" if you are surfing You Tube.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

10 Things I Know for Sure (at least I think)

1.  I could not live without Chapstick.  I am not very nice when I have misplaced my Chapstick or if it has gotten stuck in the tube.  Cherry or strawberry only please.

2.  There are few things more exciting than getting a new school issue computer, especially when your old one was at death's door.

3.  Four days of 6:30 am basketball practice in one week may kill me. (or at least make me very cranky)

4.  There is nothing like watching your students sit wide-eyed in wonder at one of the world's greatest tubists and getting the opportunity to share that experience with them.

5.  It is always nice to be thanked even when it is followed up with the dreaded but.........

6.  Being an adult sometimes sucks.  For a person who always likes to have a plan and is somewhat of a control freak, making possible life changing decisions is agonizing.  Taking a leap of faith is not my strong suit.

7.  My to-do list is impossibly long.  Probably the reason I am avoiding it.

8.  Two little white dogs are not conducive to a black wardrobe.

9.  Opening Day is April 5th, so I will NOT be in school that day!!

10.  There is nothing more comfortable than blue jeans, a sweatshirt, and a pair of boots.

Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday.  I am headed back to school for basketball.  GO TIGERS!!!!