Friday, August 22, 2008

Blessed all over the place!

Tonight was one of those nights when a person's blessings really become apparent. Those of you who know me, know that organization is not one of my strong points. I had recently panicked, due to a couple of fairly major tools being lost.

One was my address book. One year my sister-in-law Ruth gifted me with an address book, in which she had written all the family addresses and phone numbers. This was a terrific gift! Over the years, I had kept that address book updated. Then one day, I lost it. I was in a panic. I bought another address book and quickly wrote down everything I remembered and had in other spots. Then of course, I found the first book.

Within the last three or four weeks, I had mislaid the newer book, which had all the current addresses in it. That, in and of itself, was fairly serious, since I couldn't send birthday cards, get-well cards, and the like. It really became a problem for me, though, when my cell phone died for lack of a charge. I had many of the family phone numbers stored in the cell phone!

I had conducted several fruitless searches, trying to find that darn address book, all to no avail. I tried to go on with my life, but it was hard. I couldn't check up on the kids, for instance, since I didn't know their phone numbers off the top of my head--bummer. Then another disaster struck--I lost the check book! Of course, this was much more serious than misplacing the address book. For one thing, the phone bill was due, and I needed the check book to pay it! It had only been gone a couple of days, but all the same, I was really worried. I might actually have to clear up my mess on the couch, in an attempt to find it!

Tonight I was vainly searching through the paid-bills folder in an attempt to see if the check book was in there with the BOA bill I had last paid. No luck. I decided to attempt to separate and organize all the loose receipts, which I told David would be a lot simpler, if I only had some paper clips. He jumped up, took off for his desk downstairs, and came back with three or four. I needed more, so I suggested he look in the "junk drawer" by the refrigerator. He came back in, smiling. "I didn't find any paper clips, but maybe this will make up for it!", and he pitched me my address book. I was really glad to see it!

Then I commented, "I would imagine that the check book is with the BOA bill, wherever that is." Again, up he jumped, stalked out, and came back, smiling and waving the check book. "Wherever did you find that?" He replied he had seen the bill laying on a footstool inside our bedroom door, so he checked, and there was that pesky check book, hiding underneath!

So, like I said in the title, God is just blessing me all the place tonight! Now I'll go pay that phone bill, put those other papers away, address a couple of birthday cards, and get on with my life. Love to all, and God bless.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

English lesson

Tonight we were discussing tools and their purposes. It was a lot of fun to try to explain some of the things that were there. For instance, there was a toilet plunger. Some of you know the Shel Silverstein poem that makes reference to a plunger. Need I say that the students thought I was really funny when I acted that out?

Another thing that got a lot of laughs was the duct tape. Garnett said it was one of the most important things in a US tool box. Of course we didn't have enough Spanish (or Japanese or Ukrainian) to explain the old US maxim, "If it moves and it shouldn't, use duct tape." But we could show them a few things, and Garnett was able to explain a little bit of stuff, like how her guide in Ecuador had used duct tape to keep Garnett's too-big shoes from sliding around on her feet. I told them people even made dresses out of duct tape (note to self, try to find a picture for next week), but that it was really good for loud kids and illustrated how you could put a piece of tape over their mouths.

Like I said Tuesday, I love ESL. Good night to all, and God bless.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

She's still a teacher

My friend Garnett called me last week about "helping" a friend with her ESL (English Second Language) class for adults. I told her I'd be glad to help, as long as all that entailed was sitting in the classroom while the other woman taught. Okay. That lasted one night.

Tuesday, I taught a class solo. I have the very beginning students, those who know enough English to tell me their name and where they are from--maybe. Other than that, their English is still better than my Spanish (which is the only second language in this particular class). Last week we worked on "Hello, my name is_____." We also worked on the alphabet. Again this week, we worked on "Hello, my name is_____." And the alphabet. Only this week, I kept getting more students.

We started out with 4 or 5, but by the time the class was over, there were 9 in there. Class started at 7 (actually a few minutes after that). A supervisor came in for a few minutes and seemed to wonder why I hadn't started yet. I told her we were on Hispanic time. She understood perfectly, laughed, and left. Like I said, several others came in as the class went on. About 8:10, a second supervisor brought in the 8th student and said, "I promise, no more new people." This fellow had been in another classroom, but the instructor had quickly gathered that he wasn't ready for her class yet. The supervisor said, "He needs to be in your class." I said, "Are you sure?" He replied, "Oh, yes, he needs to be in this class." Do I need to tell you I loved it? It wore me out, but I LOVED it.

By the end of the evening, I had committed to teaching on Tuesdays all the school year, I guess. Tonight at church, my friend Macy caught me and asked me, "Do you want to help me teach ESL tomorrow night?" I didn't hesitate very long before I told her sure, as long as she was doing the teaching and I was just sitting in the class...Maybe I should have thought that over, since that was what I did the first time.

A few of my family members who read this blog are going to recognize the person in this next little bit about ESL. Garnett told me she was going to teach a combined class on Thursday night, since Gary had been pestering her for quite a while to bring his tools to class and teach the students the names of all the tools. She and I both looked at each other and laughed--let's just hope that Garnett is the one who actually teaches the names of the tools. Otherwise, I don't know if anyone will be able to understand a word they say.

That's enough for tonight--Goodnight to all, and God bless!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Medals in perspective

Like several of you, I've been watching Olympic coverage this week. Today while blog browsing, I found a reference to this chart that puts a different slant on who is ahead in the medal count. I know we are all rooting for our own country to be ahead, but after watching the opening ceremonies and seeing all those countries with only a handful of athletes and a coon-dog's chance of winning anything, it's NICE to see the big powers down toward the bottom of the list!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

And yet another picture...

Grandpa David and Granny Susan are enjoying some bonding with their new grandson. We just wish they lived a little closer, so that we could hold and rock him a little more!

Did anybody want to see pictures?

This is Cohen, about three hours after he was born. His granny really does love him. He didn't have a lot to say about her, though. The red hair and eyes in the background belong to Cohen Preston's Papaw, Preston.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Somebody new

Thought you might like to see Cohen Preston Brown, 7 lb 10 oz, 19.75 in long--born this morning at 8:23 am. Mother, Cohen, and all concerned are doing fine. His picture is on the Brown Famile blog. Every good and perfect gift cometh from above. Thank you, Lord! Love to all, and God bless.