Saturday, September 24, 2011

Mom on the Cheap

Today, I was Mom on the Cheap.

It started with our cute, mountain town Fall Festival Parade.  When you live in a small town, half the residents are IN the parade and the other half are AT the parade.  Seriously, businesses shut down for two hours.  I got free water for dancing to the country music as the country radio station drove by.  The boys had a good time dancing to the music and running for candy.  If only the parade was closer to Halloween, I would have enough candy to give out to Trick or Treaters (Mom on the Cheap).  Way too much candy.

Right after the parade, we went to the county flu shot clinic.  We were third in line.  The boys got their flu shots for free (Mom on the Cheap).  Jack didn't even flinch, but Joshua just can't sit still to save his life.  As I was holding him, another nurse came over to help and she said, "I know him!  I did his shots a few years ago.  His picture was in the newspaper.  He's even on our promotion poster."  Sure enough, Joe had taken him 3 years ago and the newspaper photographer captured their picture.  They were in the paper.  And sure enough, we looked at the promotion poster.  There were Joe and Joshua.  He was only one-years old at the time, but she recognized him.  He's like a celebrity on the mountain.

We had heard that the Show Low Museum has a good model train track.  Today was the perfect opportunity as today is some national parks and museum day where admission is free (Mom on the Cheap).  The boys enjoyed watching the train go over switching tracks, through a tunnel, over a bridge.  The tunnel goes near a window and if you stand outside, you can see it go through the tunnel from the inside.  They can't wait to go back and show Joe.

Finally, we headed over to the Fall Festival.  I had read on their website that if you bring a decorated pumpkin, you get in for free.  So, the $6 I paid for the pumpkins, paid for our admission (Mom on the Cheap).  The boys went on the bouncy slide (for free) about 100 times.  They bounced in the bouncy house (for free) for about 30 minutes.  They pet the animals in the petting zoo.  We walked around the exhibits.  We ran into friends and chatted.  The boys played some game and won 2 goldfish; yippee for me (dripping sarcasm).  Then, the pumpkin judge saw us and told us that the boys had won!  They got $10 each!  On the way out, a lady walked up to Joshua and said, "I know him.  Where does he go to school?"  We never figured out how the lady knows Joshua, but I'm telling you.  He's like a celebrity.  Everyone knows Josh.

Now, we are at home.  Resting.  What a fun day.  Four great events and I came out $20 ahead!  Now that's MOM ON THE CHEAP.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Robot League!

A few months ago, our superintendent told us about a robot league.  Students do research, then program a robot to complete obstacles in a course.  I thought it sounded fun, so I looked into it.

Well, the entire program would have cost about $1,000.  We don't have that kind of money, so I called the coordinator and asked her if they had a grant that I could apply for.  She said she would speak with the Lego company, Microsoft, and NASA.  A few months later, she told me that we had been fully funded!

Whiteriver Elementary now has their own robot and the students are in the robot league.  They have named themselves the "New Explorers" and they have named their robot "Bob". 
The name of the robot has special meaning for me.  My late grandfather's name was Bob.  He had a lucrative career in electronics.  Very cutting edge stuff.  I am excited to see his legacy live on. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Beauty From Ashes

I recently heard about a special program that Disney is doing called Disney Planet Challenge.  Since I teach Science, I thought it would be fun to enter the contest and see what happens.

Well, then Disney sent out a message on Facebook that they will fund the first 100 projects that sign up through  I signed up this weekend and woke up at 5 am to be one of the first 100 teachers to register.  Then, I prayed.  I prayed that God would bless these kids.  He gives them Beauty for Ashes.

At about 11:00 I received word that Disney would fully fund our project!  Hallelujah!  To Him goes the glory.  Click on our site to see what we are up to:

***I received word the other day that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation want to donate $100 to my classroom project.  But since Disney has the paid the bill, I should make a new project.  I'm thinking Math this time.  Any suggestions?

where Glory meets my suffering