Relationship Status



Tennessee Tech


May 09 2007

Sixth semester in a row with a 4.0. :)

I've had one every semester since I met Josh.  He's a good influence. :)


May 05 2007

Congratulations to my dad, my sister, and my brother-in-law for walking in the White House Relay for Life last night.  I'm so proud of you guys!

Thank you to all who donated to help them and for all of you who kept them in your prayers.


May 04 2007

As most of you know, I dedicated a lot of time and effort to the Honors Program during my first 5 years at Tech.  I have loved that program, regardless of the many flaws that I saw and my clashes with the leadership.  Right now, I am completely disgusted and disappointed.

At least since I came to Tech in 2001, the Honors Handbook has said that to graduate in cursu honorum (in the course of the Honors Program) you have to complete Honors 1010, 15 hours of Honors credit in classes spread across 3 disciplines, 2 Honors colloquia (interdisciplinary classes that are usually pretty cool,) full membership in the Honors Program, a 3.5 GPA and-here's the part I've always hated-2 essays, one on critical thinking and one on your developmental growth, a final resume, and an exit interview with one of the directors and an Honors professor.

It came to light a few years ago that while they've been required the essays, resume, and interview, they're not actually in the Honors Charter, which means that students don't actually have to do them.  The Honors Charter is approved by the Academic Council at Tech, and the program has to abide by it.  When we discovered that it was being violated and students were, let's face it, being LIED to about what they had to do to graduate in cursu, the Honors Council voted to change the Charter.  The change, of course, has to be approved by the Academic Council for it to actually change the requirements.  Just so you know, as of the current date, they haven't even sent it to the Academic Council.  They are still telling students that they're required to complete the essays, resume, and interviews, which again, is not true.  For the record, even if it had been passed, the ammendment notes that anyone who joined Honors before the change was enacted can choose the Charter under which they want to graduate.

One of my friends is graduating this year.  He's completed all the requirements set forth in the Honors Charter, and yet the Honors Program is trying to refuse him in cursu graduation.  First, they flat-out refused him.  This Wednesday, when he went to talk to them about it, the director told him that while the papers, etc aren't in the Charter as requirements, they're not optional.  Then, the director told him to talk to the secretary on Thursday.  Thursday, the secretary told him that he needed a signed letter from the director saying that he really was graduation in cursu, since he didn't do the interview and papers, nevermind that he doesn't actually have to.  While the director was in the office, the secretary refused to "disturb" her for this.  (Graduation is tomorrow, so this is rather important, you know?)  When my friend came back an hour later as directed, the secretary and director were both out to a "long lunch."  A quick e-mail sent to a variety of university officials fixed the problem somewhat, but the director protested that he had not completed the proper "processing."  ... What kind of processing do you have that requires 2 papers, a resume, and an interview to determine if a student has taken certain classes and has the appropriate GPA?  Anyone else think this sounds a bit shady?

I am overall extremely disappointed in the program and its leadership.  This problem certainly started with the old director who first imposed the requirements that were not listed in the Charter, but I thought that the new director had more integrity that this.  I'm not sure who exactly they think they are that they can blatantly ignore the Charter that gives them the right to even have their program on campus, but I am certain of one thing - they are going to lose this fight.  The Charter is explicit about the requirements, and my friend has fulfilled every last one of them.

For the record, neither Josh nor I intend to do the papers or interviews either.  They will certainly lose the fight then as well.


April 27 2007

I have one final next week on which I need a 78 to get an A.  Then, assuming I don't go to grad school, it's my last final ever!  I still have a semester of student teaching, but there, I'll be giving the exams instead of taking them.  Bwahaha!

The very end of March, I started taking some of the fitness classes over at the university gym.  I don't normally like to sweat or, well, exert myself physically, but they have been a lot of fun.  Josh tells me he can see a difference, but the important part is how different I feel.  I have more energy, and it really seems to put me in a great mood.  I feel great!  I am hungry all the time though!

In reference to the parking problems at Tech, I did get a letter back from President Bell.  He said that they regret the problems and will be looking into possible solutions.  I thought, "yeah right," but I talked to the director at the CDL, and apparently the day that I got the letter, there had already been about 6 emails from President Bell and others talking about possible solutions.  I suppose we'll see if anything will happen.

Daniel is growing like a weed.  I dropped him off in the toddler room the past two mornings.  He seems to really be thriving in there.  He doesn't cry or even fuss when I drop him off, he seems to love all of the new toys, and the majority of the other children are very sweet to him.  I'm sad that my little darling is growing up so quickly!  He's not a baby anymore; he's a little boy!  *sniff*sniff*  It's just unbelievable that he's already so big and so old.  I knew it would go by quickly, but I didn't think it'd be quite so fast!  I am so proud of him though.  I think he's going to learn a lot in the toddler room, and I'm excited to see all the new things he'll be able to say and do.

The Pooptacular Tech Police

April 03 2007

So, at my son's daycare on campus, there are 5 parent parking spots.  There are 65 children enrolled in the daycare, so there are some obvious problems from the start.  When you add in students, faculty, staff, and heaven only knows who else who think they should park anywhere they choose, there is a serious parking problem for parents.  The parents of the CDL were told that if our spots were full, we could park out front, so long as we displayed our parent tag and did not block the fire lane, and we would not be ticketed.

So I got a ticket last Wednesday.

I filed an appeal, and it was granted.  This does not, however, alleviate my ire.  I was told that I should park in commuter parking if I couldn't find a spot in the parent parking.  No parent should have to carry/walk their child that far away, especially if there is any sort of inclement weather.  And what exactly are the parents without a student or faculty permit supposed to do?  Drive around in circles waiting for a student to get out of class and move their car?  Ask the daycare workers to hurl their child through the classroom window into their car as they slow down?  What makes me angriest is that while all the powers that be are more than willing to admit that there's a problem, not one of them seems interested in DOING ANYTHING ABOUT IT.  BAH!

Now, as you all know, I am not exactly meek and mild.  I happen to be a bit snippy, perhaps mouthy.  So, like any irate mother faced with the prospect of carrying her squirming, fussing, cranky, apparently suicidal child across a busy campus street filled with college students driving in a fashion which indicates that they too experience suicidal or at least homicidal thoughts, I wrote an angry, albeit reasonably polite and tactful letter.  To whom, you might ask?

Oh, just the President of the University.

And the Vice President of University Advancement who oversees the university's relationship with the community.

And the Chief of University Police.

And the Dean of the College of Education, who oversees the Child Development Lab.

And the Director of the CDL.

As I discussed with some friends today, an angry email (which several parents have sent) says, "I'm angry right now, but not angry enough to put forth much effort! Oh, please don't delete me!"  An angry letter, though, says, "I'm angry!  I'm angry enough to type a letter, print it out, sign it, put it in an envelope, walk out to the mailbox, and pay 39 cents (x 5) to tell you how angry I am!  I'm angry enough to complain and make a right pain of myself!  BAH!"

So today, four of the five spots were filled with cars that had no parent tags.  I called the Tech police, and they obligingly sent one of their fine officers right over.  She arrived as I was pulling out with Daniel.  She looked at the first car and kept walking.  She looked at the second car and kept walking.  She looked at the third car and kept walking.  She looked at the fourth car and kept walking.  Because none of them had student hangtags, she didn't ticket them.  Nevermind that they were in PARENT SPOTS and were not in fact parents.  Apparently, in her world, only students get tickets.  By fine officer, I mean completely ineffectual, irritatingly useless, and ridiculously dumb.  I wanted to run her over with my oh-so-beautiful new Camry, but I did not wish to mar it with dents nor sully it with blood.

I suppose I could have called and complained, but I've already called them three times today, and I really don't think I could interact with them without the occurance of a moderate to serious apoplexy.


January 08 2007
It's been just a little while since I last posted. 

Daniel very much enjoyed his second Christmas.  They practiced opening presents at daycare, so he was an expert by the time he had to do it for real.  Of course, he was much more interested in the wrapping than in the presents themselves.  Unfortunately, Daniel and I got sick on Christmas and stayed that way for about another week and a half.  (Josh's whole family was sick, but thankfully, everyone is doing much better!)

We still haven't celebrated with my family, since we were contagious when we had planned to visit.  We'll be going to see them this weekend, and I'll also be taking all three Praxis exams this weekend as well.  That should be fun!

Daniel and I got so spoiled having Josh home for so long.  He was off work from the Thursday before Christmas until the 3rd, so we got to spend so much time with him!  It was wonderful!  Daniel's gotten so much more snuggly with Josh over the vacation, and he was very sad to see Daddy go back to work.  We're all still having a great time on weekends, at least!


November 20 2006
Today, teaching wasn't AS bad.  Today was my last day of teaching, and the day scheduled for my professor to come and observe.  Because of this, I planned a lesson that incorporated many of the techniques she says contribute to a good lesson.  There was creativity, there was lots of discussion, both as a whole class and in small groups, there was movement around the classroom, there was a story-based grammar lesson, there was LOTS of participation from the students, and there was even an opportunity to color.  Hmmm, what could have been missing?

Oh, yeah...MY PROFESSOR.  That's right; she didn't show up.  She forgot.  I was rather livid until she told me that since it was her fault she missed it, I get a 100.  She still wants to come and observe me, so I'll have to make another lesson and teach again later this semester.


November 16 2006
You know, I really don't want to be a teacher.  I've gotten a taste of it this semester, especially the past couple days while I've been teaching on my own, and I really hate it.  I hate their smug, stupid expressions.  I hate their laziness.  I hate their lack of effort.  I hate the awkward silence that follows when I ask a simple question that they should have known by the second week of French I.  I hate their complete lack of concern for their grades.  I hate their complete disinterest in any culture other than their own.  I hate teaching.

I know that there are great things about teaching - I keep hearing about what a difference you can make in someone's life, and how wonderful it is to inspire someone to learn.  Well, you know, maybe I'd experience some of these wonderful things, but I really think I'm a terrible teacher, I think.  I have no patience for the students who don't try.  They drive me crazy!  Over half of the time that I walk out of the classroom this semester, I feel defeated and frustrated.

As you might guess, teaching isn't going so well.  My classroom teacher assures me that the lesson was fine, I did a fine job, and that every student teacher feels like this after their first lessons.  I suppose we'll see after tomorrow.  I know I have to go back, but I really would just like to pull the covers over my head tomorrow and stay at home and never go back a high school until my son is attending one.


November 02 2006
Tech's French Club is having a big fancy dinner tonight and one of the members asked if they could borrow my cooler to hold ice for the drinks.  I said sure, and she said she'd pick it up today at 11.  She called about 11:10 to say that she couldn't get it then, could she come at 12:30?  I said sure, come at 12:30.  At 12:40, she called and said she needed to stop by Hobby Lobby first, but I told her that wouldn't work since I needed to leave here before 1:30.  It is now 12:52, and she has yet to show up.  (She was on campus when she called, which is about 7 minutes from my house with traffic.)

Why would you say you'll be somewhere at a particular time if you are apparently incapable of actually being on time?


October 07 2006
So, I was looking over the study guide for the midterm exam for one of my education classes, I cam across the heading "Chapter 5: re FL instruction in the Middle School Classroom was not assigned, but: " followed by a list of things from the chapter that we should study for the midterm.

I don't claim to be the most logical person in the world, but it seems to me that if you tell your students that you're not going to cover a chapter, you shouldn't tell them four days before the midterm that they need to know several chunks of material from said chapter.  Not only does it not make sense to tell your students two different things, it's extremely inconsiderate to those students who happen to plan and organize their study time based on what you've already said. 

Education classes make me stabby.

Attacked by midgets.

September 18 2006
So today I did my first field experience for the SEED/FOED class.  My time slot will be from 9-10, which isn't bad.  It's not what I would have preferred,  but it does make many things easier.  I don't have to stress as much about getting Daniel to daycare and then hurrying over to the high school, as I have more time to drop him off, probably around 8:30ish.  (Lucky little boy - if my observation started at 8, he had to be at daycare around 7:30) 

The field experience isn't entirely fun.  As the title states, I believe I was attacked by midgets in the hallway.  There are large groups of shoulder-high sullen kids who seems to have no concept of the words "Excuse me" and feel no need to watch where they're going.  They're small, so I'm sure that I could shove back, but I think it might be unacceptable behavior to send little Timmy or little Susie flying, even if they do deserve it.  I do have the advantage of height at least.  Two of the other girls in my class are very short, and one of them got bounced around more than I did when walking down the hall in between classes.

I'm observing a French 2 class taught by Mrs. Presley.  I'm please with this, as Mrs. Presley is very nice.  Her class is also entertaining.  I think it will be an interesting experience, and I should actually learn a lot.  Apparently, there's a list of stuff we have to do for the class, including making seating charts and grading tests, but I haven't been given the list.  I imagine I will receive it tomorrow.

Daniel has had a rough week or so.  He hasn't been feeling his best as his nose has been very stuffy.  I think he's having allergy problems, same as his mommy.  Then the poor little guy had to get vaccinations on Thursday.  Thursday night he woke up with croup, and the doctor gave him a cortisone shot on Friday to help with that.  He seemed to feel pretty bad all weekend long, too.  Hopefully he'll get to feeling better soon.  As we all know, if he's not happy, he sees to it that no one else is either.


September 13 2006
So it turns out that the high school here no longer has block scheduling.  This means that for my FOED class, we have to do 10 weeks, instead of 6 1/2 of field experience.  This wouldn't be so bad, except that the teacher has procrastinated in getting our observation set up.  Now, the only way we can do 10 full weeks is if we start next week and go through exam week.  I for one don't want to have to worry about going to the high school during exam week.  If she procrastinates any more, we'd be forced to go after Christmas break starts.  This is especially irritating as we had to do the observation recently, and I called them to set up a time and was there at 8AM the next day.  It's not hard to do.  I am displeased.


September 08 2006
I forgot to mention earlier that right as I got to the high school, two boys got in a fight.  What a welcome to the school!  Gee, I can't wait to teach high school.


September 08 2006
This morning I went to Cookeville High School for an observation.  I watched a French I class for about 25 minutes.  (I left when they headed to the language lab.)  Before class, they had to retrieve their workbooks from a bookshelf about 4 feet from my chair.  At least six students knocked into me while getting their notebooks and not a single one said "Excuse me."  High schoolers, at least at CHS, are very rude.  It also gave me very little hope for ever having fun teaching a high school French class.  It seemed like the teacher had to practically pull teeth to get a response out of the students.  Sigh.  On an even sadder note, the pink shoes, while fabulous, are very uncomfortable.  That does not, however, mean that I won't wear them occasionally.

On an unrelated note, I am really craving Chinese food.


September 05 2006
We had Daniel's first birthday party this weekend.  This is what he thought of it:  

His lovely cake was shortly (and happily) reduced to this:

It was a great party and the baby had a lot of fun.  Thanks again, Mom, for all the work you put into it!  Quite a few family members were there, and there was lots of yummy food, including a soccer field cake and homemade ice cream.  We had such a great time and Daniel got some great gifts.  Happily, there was only one large one, so we don't have to build another house to hold his toys until next year.  It was so much fun!

In other news, I am now a reluctant and not so proud owner of a 1995 Honda Shadow.  While I do not approve, Daniel seems to.


August 30 2006
My grandmother is doing well.  Today they're moving her out of the ICU and to a regular room.  My mother says that if she does well tonight, they'll move her to the nursing home tomorrow.  She's also been a bit nicer to the poor nurses yesterday and today.  Hopefully she'll be able to leave the nursing home eventually!

Some of you already know that when I'm worried, I feel much better if I cook.  My mother and I came up with a wonderful idea - Granddaddy has been spending most of his time at the hospital, so I cooked up a bunch of food yesterday to take to him this weekend.  Mom is paying for the groceries, but she doesn't have enough time to cook lots of extra food, so I'm happy to help!  Tomorrow, I'll work on a side dish or two, but I've already got about two weeks of main dishes in the freezer or fridge.  I need to get some more Ziploc containers!

Classes started Monday.  They're not nearly as bad as I thought they would be.  So far, I've actually learned stuff in the FOED class, which is a real shock.  This FOED is "Integrating Instructional Technology into the Classroom" and we're using Macintosh iLife.  I don't prefer Macs, but I do like Keynote, which is the Mac version of PowerPoint.  The next class is Materials and Methods for Teaching Foreign Languages, and the focus is on discussion, which is nice.  I always like it when classes, especially upper division classes, focus more on discussion than lecture.  I have a fair amount to read for that class, but both classes only meet on Mondays and Wednesdays.  I'm done with classes for the week!

This weekend, I'm going to my parents for Daniel's first birthday party.  I'm excited!  I know Daniel won't care too much, but it's a big deal to us.  Most of his grandparents and some great-grandparents will be there, along with his aunts and uncles.  It should be a lot of fun.  I can't wait to see if he'll eat his cake or use it for hair product.


August 28 2006
For those of you who have not heard, my grandmother had a stroke Saturday morning.  They successfully removed the blood clot from her brain and she's now in the ICU.  She seems to be doing as well as can be expected, and hopefully will be moved out of the ICU this week.  Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Have You Seen This Bunny?

August 23 2006

If anyone can find an additional Mr. Floppy and wouldn't mind getting it for us, we would pay you back and be eternally grateful.

UPDATE:  Mr. Floppy is made by Prestige Toy Co for Carter's, style number 7300.  He was an easter special toy made is the spring of 2004 or 2005.  Carter's tells me they don't keep him in warehouses, as he was made so long ago, but he's likely to be found in a Burlington Coat Factory store, in Big Lots, or on Ebay.


August 23 2006
The doctor says that Daniel has an upper respiratory infection.  He seems to be feeling a bit better, but his nose is still extremely runny and he still has a nasty cough.  The doctor also says that he's not contagious, so he could start daycare this week, thank goodness.  (I didn't want to shove him in next week for so long without easing him in first.) 

I found a few more problems with the carpet over the last few days.  The seam between the living room and the master isn't finished, you can see the raw edge of the carpet at the seam between the living room and the study, and where the carpet meets the wood floor, there's a piece of trim that is supposed to cover the edge of the carpet, but they cut off the carpet at the edge of the trim, so you can see the raw edge there too.  I have to say that I am completely fed up.  If you ever need anything installed, go somewhere other than Lowes.  It's just not worth the hassle and the headaches.  I suppose I'm asking too much of professional installers to actually install a carpet correctly.


August 22 2006
Baby sick again.  Mommy and Daddy exhausted again.