Tuesday, September 28, 2010

To be or not to be...on Facebook that is

Lately I have been considering the pro's and con's of being on Facebook.  On one hand it is great to keep up with family.  I actually hear the news before my Grandma gets a chance to pass it along.  On the other hand, do I really need to read that someone is "Tired". 

At one point, I was addicted.  I would check FB constantly and spend an hour checking status updates.  Now I check in maybe once a week and I usually only post while I am sitting in the parking lot waiting for my son to come out of school.  

One thing that really irritates me about Facebook is the drama associated with removing someone from your friend list.  It reminds me of high school.  So what if I don't want to be your friend anymore on FB.  You either ticked me off, your post's bothered the crap out of me, or I just don't give a damn.  If you obsess over why you aren't my friend on Facebook you probably have much bigger things to worry about like why you need to be liked by every Tom, Dick, and Harry on FB.

I suppose I will continue to stay on Facebook due to the friend and family connection but I'll keep it limited.  I have more productive things to do...like reading blog postings.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Parent Teacher Conferences and Mrs. Algebra

Parent Teacher Conferences were held last night at my son's school.  Before crowding ourselves into the gymnasium we were given his progress report.  All A's and and A minus except for Algebra 2 and Digital Photography.  Those were C's.  Imagine my dumbfounded expression when I see an A in Biology and a C in Digital Photography. 

We headed straight for the photography teacher.  Apparently there was an assignment she hadn't entered in yet and a test on Photo Shop that the kids all have to retake - Austin had one of the highest scores. She assured us that he should have an A after those are entered and completed.

Next on the radar was Mrs. Algebra teacher.  I am not sure I am going to like her. My blood pressure became slightly elevated as she went into an explanation of her grading system.  Before grading an assignment, she randomly selects 4 or 5 problems that she will check because "I don't have time to check them all."  Each assignment is worth 20 points, so if the kids miss one of her randomly selected problems their grade drops 4 or 5 points.  If they miss two it drops by half.  If they miss three - well, hell, they shouldn't have even bothered to spend an hour plus on the 20 to 30 problems they were assigned. 

My son's grade isn't due to poor assignment grades, it is due to his horrible test score on the one test they have had so far. But I am still irked at her grading system.  My reasons: 1-It isn't fair to the students to be graded on such a small portion of their assignments. 2- By not assessing all of the problems there is a chance she is overlooking an equation or concept the kids are struggling with. 3-When the students are given back their work, they don't see all of the problems they answered incorrectly.  In which case, they are unable to go back and try to discover what they did wrong.

I understand time constraints but I don't think is a fair and correct solution.

Her recommendation is for my son to attend the Math Labs.  They are held everyday, either before or after school.  Hers are two mornings a week  from 6:45 to 7:45.  I am all about my son getting a little extra help but right now isn't a great time for him to be going to Math Lab.  Until October 1st, he has driver's education after school until 5.  If he adds a math lab in the morning, it makes for one heck of a long day, not including nightly homework.  He also has a part in the Shakespeare play Twelfth Night which means after driver's ed completes he will have play practice after school. 

For right now, my son's dad has offered to tutor him in the concepts he is struggling with.  This will be very interesting.  Hopefully, it will work without destroying their relationship.  If not, then, Math Lab here he comes.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sweet Sixteen

Yesterday was my son's sixteenth birthday.  For me the day was a little crazy as I tried to work and get ready for a party.  I had a cake to decorate, cupcakes, and chili to make.  Somehow I managed to get it all done before picking Austin up from driver's ed.  
Austin up a tree at school. 

The family came over for dinner and cake which was fun and chaotic.  Between making sure everyone got dinner and dishing out cake, I didn't get an opportunity to take pictures.  My dad did though but I don't have them to post.  The last few years, the gift giving has been somewhat boring.  My son doesn't ask or require much - money, iTunes gift cards, and books made him a happy birthday boy.  My parents gave him a car.  A genuine Hot Wheels Corvette.  It looks beautiful in it's little plastic package.

I let Austin have his friends come over about an hour after the family.  That way he could have family time then friend time.  I had to laugh as I sat upstairs in my bedroom listening to their music coming from the basement.  The music was the same as what my friends and I were listening to at that age.  I suppose it is all "retro" now or whatever.

I enjoyed the party but was happy when the door closed behind the last person.  Today is just another day only now I say my sixteen year old son.  And I try to forget that I am almost twenty years older. 

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Remembrance and Grief

Two years ago this past Friday (9/10/2008), my dear friend Jodi died due to injuries sustained in a car accident.  Somehow, I let the day pass without realizing what it was.  The next day, her brother reminded me of the anniversary of her death.  I felt terrible that I had let it pass without, at least, visiting the cemetery.  For a few moments, I thought it meant that I was forgetting.  I then realized that maybe I simply blocked it out. 

Not a day goes by that I don't miss my friend.  We ran errands together, we sat on the porch talking, we laughed together, cried together, and yes we even had a few fights and times when weren't speaking. 

I rarely drive by the accident site and not glance over to the spot where her car landed after it rolled or the field where she landed after she was thrown.  And I have dealt with guilt. Guilt that maybe I could have done something - anything.   Even though I know in my heart and soul, that it was her time to leave us.

It may sound strange but my feelings of guilt came not right after the accident  but just a few months ago.  You see I was on the freeway heading south, talking to another friend on my cell phone, when I passed the accident.  It was over on the north bound lanes and I didn't pay much attention to what was happening. I didn't even mention it to my sister when I stopped at her house.  At the accident site, there was an ambulance, police cars, and firetruck.  Chances are at that moment, my friend was arguing with the paramedics and police about being life-flighted to the hospital in Provo, rather than taken by ambulance to the local hospital.

The thought keeps coming into my head that if I hadn't been on the phone, maybe I would have paid more attention, seen that it was her car.  Maybe I could have turned around in the Emergency turnout, and maybe I could have made sure she took the helicopter instead of the ambulance.  Or perhaps, I could have let her parents know earlier than they did about the accident and gave them some time to say their Goodbye's.

I realize these are all what-ifs and if I weren't on the phone I probably wouldn't have known it was her anyway because of where the car and emergency vehicles were.  I realize that it is probably just wishful thinking, wishing that I could have somehow saved my friend.  I will never know for certain.

What I do know, is that wherever she is, she is happy.  She is beautiful. And the restrictions her body had on earth have been removed.  I know she knew her grandson before he was born. I know that she was able to watch over her son while he was in Iraq and Afghanistan.  And I know that she has been with all of us that love her whenever we have needed her comforting presence.

In memory of Jodi Spencer Martinez, June 22, 1968 - September 10, 2008.  We love you and miss you very much.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

When you realize you're the problem...

I have done A LOT of thinking the last few days and have realized that I am the problem.  As a single gal I feel as though I am missing out on the joys of coupledom.  Specifically having a partner to share the day to day of life.  I haven't been in a relationship in almost 5 years.  That seems like a very, very long time.

But this post isn't really about my non-existent romantic life.  It is about me.  Yes, ME!  The question I have been pondering is: What do I want? It is a question that I can't answer with certainty.  If I can't tell myself what I want, how can I expect to have a relationship with anyone and get what I want or need out of it. 

So the problem isn't that I am single.  The problem is that I need to figure me out.  I need to decide what I want and then go after it. Until, I figure that out it is probably for the best that I don't drag some poor schmuck through the mess that is my head. 

Not only do I need to figure out what I want, I need to start seeing myself as the amazing person that I am and love me. Again, if I can't figure out how to do that, how can I expect it of someone else. 

Right now I am kind of hyped up on all of this.  Feeling positive. I know that I am going slide down back into some negativity but hopefully I can work through it and get to know and love me.