Sunday, January 30, 2011

Evolution versus the Story of Creation

     For years, there has been a debate of whether or not God created man...or if we evolved from Apes.  Now please understand that I am a believer in God.  I believe that he created the heavens and earth and that he also created all that lives on this planet.  However, I am also an anthropologist and I can't deny the facts that come from finding AL 288-1 or Lucy in Ethiopia.  She is considered a hominid, from the Ape family, with facial features that are the same as a chimpanzee.  Now the argument is that the bible...(written by a variety of people over a period of time in many different languages and translated many different times again by a new variety of people) claims that God created Adam in his own image...My question...what is God's image?  Do I believe in God?  Yes with all my being!  Do I question his existence?  No, never.  Do I believe that God looks like an old man with a white beard?  Not necessarily.  We don't know what God looks like.  We only have what we are told.  Or what we choose to believe. 
     I took my class of 4 and 5 year old to the Museum of Nature and Science here in Denver.  There was a hominid exhibit in the same area as the Whoolly Mammoth and the Dinosaurs.  A gentleman from the museum was talking to the kids about the different fossils they had uncovered, and how some of these dinosaurs have evolved over time in order to survive their new environments as it changed.  A parent to be that was on the trip with us (a nanny for one of my students) was annoyed at the concept that the children were being taught about evolution.  Yet, she didn't deny that some animals have evolved.  Why is it that we as humans can't have both?  Why can't we see the possibility that God created us a differently based on the environment and the circumstances, and we evolved to what we are today?  Do I believe we once had tails and walked on our knuckles?  Not necessarily.  When it comes to science I like to deal with the facts that are provided to me.  I'm not an expert by any means on either of these subjects...But I can we believe that some animals evolved, but that humans did not and do not and could not evolve.  During our field trip to the museum we also saw a show at the planetarium.  It was called "Journey to the Stars"  The narrator discussed that in 5 billion years the sun will turn into a red giant and die (like many other stars)  the narrator also said that 5 billion years "well after humans have died or evolved in ways that we can't even imagine." 
     So which is it?  Perhaps scientists will uncover more evidence of past hominids that fill in the missing link between apes and humans without a reasonable doubt.  Perhaps they wont, perhaps we have to wait until we move on from this world to know the truth.  My question is...What do you believe?  Can you believe in both evolution and the creation story?  Can you believe in evolution but only in specific cases?  Any thoughts?

Remember...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom and a little flower!

Thursday, January 27, 2011


     Pride is a funny thing.  Too much pride can lead to complications when dealing with other people, however, to be proud is an amazing feeling that I don't think too many people really take advantage of anymore.  I just survived 2 days of field trips to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science with my 4-5 year old class.  Both days...the kids were golden!  Today, was a more challenging group of new, younger BOYS!!!  (only 1 girl) and they were more well behaved than a group of 5th/6th graders that happened to be scheduled to see the same show as we were in the Planetarium.  There was pride as an educator that my students were not only having a blast, but they were also well behaved in the process.  Holding discussions with the students after the fact and seeing that they retained information I told them was a huge moment of pride. 
     Teaching is not the only thing that gives me pride however, and I think I don't give myself credit for all that I have accomplished in my 26 years.  I have a bachelors degree in Anthropology, I graduated from the honors college!  I wrote a thesis about Egyptian burial customs during the Ptolemaic Period.  I moved away and survived a lousy relationship, and stuck it out to complete my graduate program with flying colors.  I have always been the type of person who relied on the security that others could provide for me, but I met an amazing man, and we got married and now I am living the Army Wife life, and I get it!  I'm a genius when it comes to paying bills.  I occasionally doubt my job, but the truth is...I'm great at it.  I have completed 2 half marathons and am 4 months away from my 3rd half.  I have fundraised and volunteered for some amazing organizations...most recently Team In Training for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and Soldiers Angels.  My two puppies are treated like royalty and I wouldn't have it any other way. 
     The hardest thing to do as humans is to take credit where credit is due.  Most people wait for the external appreciation from everyone around them, however, I think that people need to take a minute and realize their accomplishments no matter how big or small.  We all deserve our moment in the spotlight, but we can't rely on others to give it to us.  It only took 26 years but I think I get it now.  What is "it" you ask?  I finally get that being me and doing my best is enough...(yes mom rest easy your message has been received) So for anyone out there that is reading this... take a minute think about it, I bet you can come up with some real accomplishments that you probably haven't given full justice too, and while you are at it, make new goals for accomplishments you would like to reach in the future...Dream Big...LIVE BIGGER!

And as always remember...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower!

Monday, January 24, 2011

True Happiness

      A brief mention to anyone who may be reading this.  Be happy in your own life.  Be happy with who you are and what you do.  Because in the end its all that really matters.  Don't worry about what others are doing.  Live life and know that each choice you make, and each situation that arises does so for a reason, that may be out of our realm of understanding.  But in the end it all makes sense.  Remember to have respect for the property of others.  Be kind when dealing with the emotions of others, and most important be kind when dealing with your own emotions.  No one is perfect, but we get new opportunities each and every day to make better choices and do better.  Keep your eyes and ears open.  Slow down and breathe its amazing where that can lead.  Enjoy your time where you are while you are there...because tomorrow you could be somewhere else.  You never know, one day you may want this time back....No regrets!

Remember Just living is not must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

What is Love? Romance? Passion?

     Okay, my brain has taken on a new challenge today.  The challenge is this, what is love?  The dictionary definition is this "tender, passionate affection." A fine definition, but then again, many people come up with their own definitions of love.  Some poetic, some straight to the point.  When asked what is love?  My husband wasn't sure how to put it in words, but after a few moments (and a little pestering) he finally responded with..."Love is when you would do anything for the one you love.  The person you love, you would give your life for, and you always see the greatness in the person you love."  Mark Twain said ""Love is the irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired."  Sophocles said, ""One word frees us of all the weight and pain of life: that word is love."  All definitions are true.  The feeling of love is unique for each person.  No two people would define what they feel the same way.  I remember a movie I saw a long time ago.  The lead actress was discussing love, and she described it as the "can't eat, can't sleep reach for the stars over the fence world series kind of thing."  I myself can remember that feeling.  However, I do think it grows and changes over time.  In the spectrum of time, my husband and I haven't really been together very long at all, not compared to our parents who are both married 30 something years, or my grandparents who were married 50-60 something years.  We just celebrated our 2nd anniversary in August, but in fairness he was deployed for 9 months out of the year, and he travels often with the Army. 
     Some that must be hard I don't think I could do it.  Now don't get me wrong, my husband being gone is no cup of tea, I prefer him home with me, he is by far the best friend I have ever had.  Is our relationship often long distance?  Yes.  Does it make it hard at times?  Yes.  I do think that our love grows stronger though because of the distance.  For example, there are times when he drives me up a wall, and I am not a fool to think that there aren't the same amount of time that I drive him up a wall; the difference is, when all you have to tie you together is a phone; conversation and communication becomes key.  It is hard to ignore feelings and emotions when you can't distract each other.  All we have to stay connected in the distance other than our hearts is our communication.  There have been times we have both wanted to scream, but I must admit, when he is away a brief phone call of explanations and discussions.  Usually lead to I'm sorry's and I'll try harder...and the funny thing is, we do.  We do try harder, and often 9 times out of 10 those issues don't reoccur in the future. 
     Our love is strong, and stable, despite arguments.  We were brought together by a higher power and I am sure of that!  Someone was working to bring us together, and I know even in the hardest times, that he loves me as much as I love him, and that he will keep me safe and do anything to make me happy as I would do for him.  Yes, he can be a little rough around the edges sometimes, but then again so can I.  It is my belief that love can not be defined.  It just is.  Love is an inside feeling that only the lucky can feel.  It runs deep and it guides us through our life. 
     Now, along with love comes the romance and the passion, as children (young girls especially) the fantasy of prince charming on a horse is our first vision of the man of our dreams.  As we grow our image of "prince charming" go from a cartoon character to other fictional characters from movies and television and even books.  Sources that seem to portray not only the perfect man, but the perfect relationship by "The end."  The truth is, as much as we enjoy watching and reading about those romances...real life doesn't work that way.  In fact, real life is so much more than that.  I can predict just about every ending to every chick flick movie.  I can read a book and know the ending of the romance section before the point of the story as even taken shape yet.  In real life however, the spontaneity is so much better!  For example, when Doug was deployed to Iraq, on Valentines Day we sent me the most beautiful roses and a stuffed animal bear.  (I love stuffed animals!)  Valentines Day fell on a Sunday...Imagine my surprise when the delivery truck showed up with my beautiful flowers and bear, along with a box of chocolate and a beautiful card.  True unpredictable magic!  My husband will occasionally sneak up behind me in the kitchen, and spin me around and dance with me, just because.  A romantic night in downtown, fancy dress and 3 piece suit, The city grille and a stroll down the main street downtown just people watching hand in hand.  A long drive to nowhere just to see the sights.  Coming to bed hours earlier than the average person because I am tired, and he wants to keep me company as I fall asleep.  Yes, our romance is real, the passion is real, and the love is undeniable. 
     Love is ours to define.  Romance is ours to create as is passion.  If you are lucky enough to find the person who means the world to you then you need to be smart enough to hold on to that person and never let the mundane parts of life get in the way of what you deserve as a couple.  We don't...we argue, we talk it out, we move forward and the magic stays alive each and every day that we are both together and apart. 

I wish everyone to know that...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedomm, and a little flower.

Friday, January 21, 2011

We are who we want to be

     This morning I was given off in order to be able to work tonight without overtime.   I was at home, relaxing, since I have all weekend to clean up around the house, I chose to relax, watch some tv (Criminal Minds has finally been cleared from my DVR) and spend time with my puppies.  I took a shower leisurely and then prepared for work at my own speed.  I fed my dogs, and watched them bask in the relatively warm winter day that we are having.  Then I put my coat on, grabbed my purse and change of clothes for the nightly job that lays ahead, and walked out the door locking it behind me, and got in the truck.  Yes Doug if you are reading, I took the truck, I like it...its big...and new...and cool to drive! 
     As I was driving I was listening to a song on the radio and as usual I allowed my mind to wander to a place where I was remembering all the things I love to do and love about my life, and a warm feeling came over me.  The past attributes to who we are and what we learn.  I feel as though I have learned a lot from the people that I have attached myself too.  I hope that my experiences and my joys and sorrows continue to be learning experiences that lead me to happier and happier places.  WE choose who we are, and therefore we choose who we want to be.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


     Each week, my class learns a new letter.  And throughout the week, we practice how to write that letter, the sound the letter makes, as well as words that begin with that letter.  This week our letter of the week is the letter 'Cc'.  Now, this is a fairly easy letter to write for my class which allows me to focus more of my time and really understanding the sound and finding words that begin with the letter 'Cc.'  Now the first step...Ask class, "Please raise your hand and give me a word that begins with Cc."  Second step..."24 hands go up"  Third step..."receive words, and write all correct words on the board."  Then when the class has exhausted all the Cc words they can think of,  the fourth step goes something like this..."What do you eat in the morning for breakfast?"  Response...CEREAL!!!  "Where does a bear sleep when it hibernates?  Response...CAVE!!!!!  "Great Job!" "How about...what do you call a group of stars that create a picture in the sky if you could connect them? ... way in the back A CONSTELLATION!!!!  (Phew thank you student in the back!)  "Ok, last one...What kind of dog is Lassie?"  ** Little girl in the front raises her hand, "yes?"  Who's Lassie? 

     At what point did I become my teachers?  Who's lassie?  I'm 26 hardly old in the general scheme of things. but clearly I have dated myself beyond recognition.  We are living in a world where Bob the Builder, Bacugons, and Dora the Explorer have taken over.  Now, I am not an activist against television, quite the contrary.  I teach 4 year old boys and girls, who have the ability to absorb all they hear and see, and I find that the shows (in general) are becoming more educational teaching everything from colors and numbers to spanish, as well as working together, sharing emotions, and problem solving.  However, I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel somewhat dated and rather saddened by the fact that the classics as I know them, are gone.  But, the new generation will grow up knowing things that...when they are in their 20's their children will look at them in confusion.  A cycle, that has been going on since the beginning.  To prove a point...Who can remember surfside 6?  What generation do you belong to?

"Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower!"

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


     As a teacher, one of my jobs is to find the one thing a child does all day that is remarkable.  It has been my philosophy that for a child, each and every day they are learning something and therefore, in a 9 hour period no matter the child, at least one amazing thing would have happened.  With this theory, I usually find wonderful moments that I can write down and share with parents so they can hold onto a piece of the growth of their child while they are out supporting their family. 
    Today, it dawned on me that as adults we don't usually credit ourselves for having at least one remarkable moment a day.  An accomplishment, a realization, a new skill learned...anything.  As a teacher getting through the day without removing a child from the group is an accomplishment in itself, however, we never praise ourselves.  We as adults rarely (if ever) pat ourselves on the back for a job well done.  Sometimes in a time when so much is changing, and the world is not as it used to be, we should remember that we have the power to make a difference, a difference for ourselves and those that are closest to us.  We have the ability to make the necessary changes in our lives and our minds.  We need to remember that we are just as important as those around us, and if we don't highlight our own importance than it will be impossible to count on others around us to do it.  Throughout my day, working with the most remarkable children I have had the pleasure of meeting, there are many accomplishments for them.  In turn however, there are also many accomplishments for me.  Skills I acquire, Talents I have, my memory even is a tribute to me.  The more I learn.  The more I do.  The more I find ways to change and grow as a person which allows me to find the strength to better myself and the world around me. 

Remember...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The struggles...

     No matter how positive we try to be, every now and then there are always things that occur and put a glitch in the way we look at ourselves and the world around us.  There are things that pull us apart from one another, and create situations that should have otherwise been non-existent.  It is our job to look into the situations and use the most basic form of communication.  You guessed it, we need to talk.  We need to be calm, and let everyone explain their situation.  Then it is our responsibility to come up with a solution that is favorable to everyone.   Life is hard, and sometimes the lemons we get are hard and wont break open to make the lemonade without a little elbow grease.  Sometimes a little more effort is needed to make it a smooth road. 

Time for me to go use some of that elbow grease myself!

Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

time to find faith

     There are days in this life that leave us with mixed emotions.  Parts of the day that make us feel good, proud, accomplished even, and then that same day we can be battling feelings of frustration, doubt and anxiety.  It becomes very difficult to ignore the more negative emotions and focus on those that are positive.  Call it human nature.  For many of us, it is the negative feelings that haunt us in a sense.  We prefer to have all our ducks in a row, and phone calls, emails, daily life even can throw our world off balance leaving us feeling lost and confused.  It is important during these times to focus on the positive things are happening in our lives, and keep in mind that the negative parts are all learning experiences.  No one is perfect, and often at least in my world, we try to be.  I personally do not like confrontation.  I am a people pleaser and I am sick to my stomach when I do something wrong.  (Even minor things like arguing with my husband on who should clean dishes...)  The feelings are worse when they are out of my hands.  Waiting around and not being able to make a situation better makes me crazy!  This year my plan was to stay positive and moments like this really begin to stand in the way of that goal.  Yesterday I didn't write because I didn't want to turn this blog into a sad overthought writing piece.  My situations are what they are; both good and bad.  It is important for me to focus on the good, while trying to remind myself that the ones that try to keep me up at night are stepping stones to gaining a higher understanding of what is necessary for not allowing history to repeat itself. 
     For example, Doug and I have been living in our house for almost 2 years, and every now and then we get an email from the owners (we are renters for the moment) that inform us that there is a problem.  for example, most recently we had a garden hose hooked up to a spout outside.  The email simply requested that we unhook it, because the water could freeze causing the pipes to burst!  Well, I never would have thought about, its something I know now, and in the future (both in this house and in our future home) will remember not to repeat.  Also, speeding tickets, getting pulled over is always frightening, and although some are completely justified, some are not, but either way, they help us to become more aware (especially as young drivers) the different variations of driving.  Speeding, headlights and tailights, they all lead to different learning experiences.  Some better than others.  It is important to remember that no matter what you are not alone in any situation good or bad.  Keep faith that "it will all come out in the wash" and "it is what it is" Once a situation occurs there is no way to change it.  Rewards or consequences are issued.  All we can do is learn from our mistakes and share with other our triumphs.  We are of the human race, and mistakes are our specialty.  However, how we deal with them can be a part of our legacy.

It's important to remember "Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower."

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Completing Tasks

     I have been fortunate enough in my life to have discovered at a relatively young age the secret to staying motivated, even when life seems to be handing you one lemon after another.  What is the secret you ask?  Hrm, should I say?  Of course,  I will let you know...the secret to staying motivated is to accomplish a task.  Now I know what you are thinking...accomplishing tasks that make you feel accomplished and therefore motivated is hard in itself, not as easy as I make it out to be...if I am right and that is what you are thinking, then here's some food for thought, perhaps your tasks are too ambitious.  The idea is to create small manageable tasks, there may be more of them on a list or calendar schedule, however, the likeliness of them getting done with your nerves, and sanity still in tact are much higher.
     For example, if you are like me, and work long LONG days, planning to "clean the house" on Tuesday after work is 1. too vague and 2. IMPOSSIBLE!  Think about it, you got up early, and probably went to bed late.  Then you worked all day, now you have to go home (theoretically eat dinner) and then clean your whole house?  Umm I'm by no means an expert but my guess you wont get past the first room before you begin to fall asleep.  Then you go to bed frustrated and annoyed.  Think about it, what if your list said Tuesday Clean Dishes.  Now, you are tired and you come home, (you get take-out because umm you ALREADY HAVE DISHES!) You eat and perhaps share the stories of your day with loved ones.  Then you enter the kitchen clean the dishes and voila!  An hour later (depending on the method and amount of dishes) your task is crossed off!  Immediately you will start feeling better.  Go ahead give it a try...I'll wait...Just kidding, you can let me know if it worked. 

Just remember " Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom and a little flower."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pancakes and Peas

    In case you are wondering about the title of this particular blog, I shall explain.  I work in a school, and our school has a cook Ms. Pat.  A nice lady, but sometimes a bit odd.   Today was her choice, and what that means is that she takes all the leftovers and figures out how many there are and then distributes them accordingly.  Our class was the lucky winner of pancakes (sarcasm now!  pancakes should NEVER be microwaved)  usually, pancakes comes with applesauce, sweet potatoes, and sausage.  However, because she needs the sausage and sweet potatoes for the pancakes next week, we were served pancakes with peas and canned mandarin oranges...BLEH!  Needless to say, the students were starving!  Then for snack...(remember 4 year old children!) For snack we were served pineapples and cottage cheese!  REALLY!?!?  My whole class was starving, and since my secret stash of leftover yummy snacks (Pretzels, goldfish, crackers, and raisins) was cleaned out of my room while I was away on Christmas Vacation...the kids were left to starve until returning home with their parents.  I myself am not a cook, but even the oddest of them all had to realize that this particular menu choice was not in anyone's favor.  I know this seems like a very trivial blog posting, but in reality it sets the tone for the entire afternoon.   Meaning, 1. the kids are too hungry to sleep 2. they are still hungry when its time to get up, but ha ha evil beings have taken over snack and left healthy yet unappealing items for 4year olds, which then lead to 18 emotional...cranky...4 year olds!  oh yes...5 hours of cranky and emotional 4 year olds makes me desire my bed twice as much!  Sleep here I come!  Tomorrow is Chicken patties...ahh return to that which is edible!

No matter what the circumstances one must remember (one being me...and you) "Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower."

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

the role of the wife...

     As the years have gone by there are many women who feel that the role of the wife/significant other has changed dramatically.  Those are usually the women with the frame of mind that say...he's a grown man and he can do it himself.  I'm not his slave.  I am not one of those women.  I am an independent woman in the sense that I moved away from home, have lived on my own, have gotten a job when I needed more money to support myself and my lifestyle.  Also, marriage didn't really change that considering I became an Army Wife and when you marry into the Army, it is understood that being independent is a mandatory requirement.  However, personally I would view myself as an old fashioned wife.  An old friend once told me I was moving the feminist movement backwards, and I guess in her mind that was true, in my mind however, I was on a completely different page.  The wonderful women, wife, and mother role models that I have had, structured the person I have become.  There was sometimes sacrifice, and there was sometimes anger and frustration, but there was ALWAYS love.  I live in the modern world.  I work later than my husband, and we eat out more frequently than we eat at home (at least recently)  However, if he is hungry...I'll make him something to eat, if he's bored, I'll get dressed to go for a drive, if he's tired, we go to bed early, and when he is struggling with something I will do my best to help him any which way I can.  I do it out of love.  No other reason.  I don't mind, (well sometimes I say...A little help here!!!)  but mostly I don't mind.  The women before me were selfless.  They gave to others first without a second thought and with more love than you could ever imagine.  I hope to be the same, and in my heart I know that same blood runs through me.  I am one of those rare women who still gives themselves to their family with no reservations.

Just another reason why "Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower!"

Monday, January 10, 2011

Game night success

     Tonight was the first of what I hope to be many fun filled nights with the girls.  We had our first game night of the new year.  We played a game of Loaded Questions, and we were completely amused at the responses that were given.  I had to stay up past my usual bedtime, but it was worth every minute.  Today was a fairly relaxing day at work, and game night was the perfect end. Thank you Catherine, Stacee, and Alyssa for removing me reality for just a moment.  I still have a few things to work out at the school, but I have a plan and although Doug is going through a rough time at BNOC I plan to do what I have always done, which is listen to, and support him in any way that I can. 

     This is a shorter blog due to the time and level of exhaustion that is coming upon me.  so I leave you with this...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, a little flower. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Here's to a new beginning

      I have tried blogging before, but with little success in keeping up or following through.  Like many others the flow of our everyday lives gets underway and it becomes a matter of what we consider most important at the time.  This year I am trying something new, an attempt to keep my thoughts organized, myself focused, and perhaps even gain a little insight along the way.  Some days can appear to be routine, or unproductive, I am hoping that with the intention of writing about the daily goings on in my life, I will be able to find those little moments that take away the dreaded feeling of routine. 
     Today is my first entry as it has been my first real moment to sit down and focus on my thoughts.  Currently I am a teacher of 22, 4year olds.    I am a licensed teacher with high expectations for my classroom.  I teach (yes I said teach) 4 year olds at a Kindergarten level.  I focus on more than letters and numbers.  I teach complex concepts and ideas.  I perfect letter and number formation, and I teach the skill of blending sounds to help my small ones read a basic level one book to start.  On top of curriculum, I run my classroom 5 days a week.  I do evaluations and parent teacher conferences.  I make phone calls, create homework when requested, write comments, I write happy grams twice a month which allows me to capture the special moments of each child and share them with their families. 
     At home, I am an Army Wife.  I take care of my home, my husband, and my 2 adorable puppies.  Jinx an Alapaha Blue Blood Bulldog, and Cash a border collie mix.  I am a relatively typical wife.  I keep my house clean and organized, I take charge when dealing with the finances, and I love to cook for my husband, although many times, we are a team in the kitchen.  In my free time, I watch tv shows such as, House Hunters, Holmes on Holmes, Criminal Minds, and of course we are a football family :)  GO BIG BLUE!  Unless you are of the male persuasion of the household in which case you would be a boo hoo Bronco Fan :P  Movies are my passion, and I can usually spend hours watching movies of all different genres.  I love getting lost in the characters just for a few hours.  I also love to read an assortment of books, currently finding a rhythm reading Joanne fluke murder mystery novels.  Spunky, clever, humorous easy reads that also allow a brief escape from reality.
     I mention escaping reality, but please don't misunderstand, I love my life and the way it has turned out so far, however, like most people there are times when the daily routines of our life may be busy but ultimately mundane, especially if your husband travels.  Taking a brain vacation, often allows me to return to my tasks more focused on the jobs that need to be done.  I hope that this blog will serve as a similiar tool for me as well as keep me more connected to myself, my family, and my friends.

And remember...Just living is not enough, one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower!