Look what came in the mail today. I had forgotten all about it (ok, so I remembered earlier in the week that I had it ordered, but today I wasn't thinking about it.)

And let me tell you... the harmonica...... it works!

UPDATE! I've listened to the CD. I'm hooked on Honkin' On Bobo... why aren't you?


Look what I made at school today! Ok, last week I got out the clay for my class, and the letter stamps, and I made a little plaque for each of the kids in my class with their names on it, and this week we're painting them. I made my own name too, because I'm the teacher and I can. I even mixed white and blue to make the pale blue for my name... I am way too creative for my own good.

Leave it to Zann to force me to update my site when she hasn't posted on hers in a week. Hrmph. I updated the zoom lens pic. Good luck.

I have a paper cut the size of Nantucket on my right pinky finger. And I'm beginning to wonder just how much space AOL will let me use for storing pictures. I'm not complaining that the space never seems to run out, but it'd be interesting to know.

I have a nice pic of the NY skyline I took yesterday if anyone's interested in seeing it, let me know :-)


Let's see. What activities did I do today that allowed forced me not to write another paper for my grad class.

1. I woke up around noon, hey it's was Saturday, give me a break.

2. I ate wheat thins for breakfast.

3. I bought three new videos at Suncoast Video. (Videos purchased were "The Money Pit", "Ever After", and "The Mask of Zorro"). Stopped at Toys R Us, and 7-11 on the way home.

4. Went to the grocery store and bought dinner I ended up not making.

5. Tried to help dad fix his computer long distance New York to Florida. Found out that even reinstalling Windows doesn't fix the problem. Dad finally called it quits after over an hour of trying. Stupid machines.

6. Ended up eating honey nut cheerios for dinner. I'll have the hamburgers tomorrow night.

7. Spent an hour fiddling with my computer wallpaper/color display/fonts and yapped with Zann.

8. Took a shower. Wrote this blog entry. Climbed into bed to watch one of my new movies.

I suppose I'll be waking up early to take care of those papers tomorrow... er.. today.


And the hair still looks good after a hard days work. Miracles never cease.


I know I've been lax in posting lately, my apologizes. Let me give you an update. I've begun serious work towards my first grad school class this weekend. Sure, I did all the reading for the first unit full of assignments, but I kept putting off writing the papers. You see, I enjoy writing, honestly I do, but a lot of times I have trouble getting the ball rolling. It's always that first paragraph that throws me off. If I can get past that I'm in the clear, so in the beginning putting off the assignment always seems more appealing than actually writing the paper and getting it over with.

Once I start writing though, I end up going well over the allotted amount of pages the teacher has given me. I suppose too much is better than not enough, and it's not like they'll ever know after I adjust the font type anyway. What they don't know won't hurt them.

I ended up writing two papers this weekend. The first was entitled "My Orientation to Curriculum" (I'm a conciliator if anyone wants to know). The second paper was about the "Evolving Science of Learning" which basically comes down to the point that we are always learning new ways to learn, and why it's important for teachers to keep up with that information.

The good news is I've completed two of the four assignments in the first unit, and all in all it only took me about two and a half hours to come up with the papers fully typed. The bad news is that there are four units in the course, and each one has about four writing assignments, not to mention a final project.

I've also learned that going to school, after going to work is not as much fun as just going to school. Yes, in college you're exhausted after a hard day of classes (and for some of us 8 hours of rehearsal). But, there's something to be said about going to work all day, putting up with truck loads of senseless garbage, then coming home to write papers. Let's not forget attempting to keep up with the daily exercise plan, and doing all those menial "around the house" chores. Now all I need is a husband and some kids to take care of and I'd be pulling all my hair out handfuls at a time. As much as I want a family, I'm rather glad I've waited until I finish my education. There's only so much a human being can handle at one time. And for those of you out there who keep up with work, school, a husband/wife, kids, exercise, chores, eating, sleeping.... God bless you.


Bradley Ryan, home safe and sound.


Alarmingly enough, I created this snowman today, four days before spring. March 16th. Why is it snowing in the middle of March? Why did I leave the sunshiny paradise of Florida? The bare skin on my arms has not felt the warmth of the sun since last September. I'm am going to go crazy.

Check out the picture though. Is it a really small snowman, zoomed in close? Or is it a really large snowman, sitting in my living room chair? You decide.


For anyone who's interested in seeing baby Bradley, you can click his name. Bradley belongs to my cousin and her husband. Things were a little shakey at first, but he has been doing much better, and will hopefully be able to come home sometime this week.

In other news, I bought morning glory seeds this afternoon. I will be planting them once the weather warms up here in NY, and I'll be sure to bring some along to FL with me when I visit in May. I'm thrilled because I found tricolor seeds for this year's batch. I've never planted this type of morning glory before. I can't wait to see how they turn out.


God, bless and watch over Bradley Ryan Donaldson on the day of his birth, and every day thereafter. Happy birthday little one.

"Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me....
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now, I see.

T'was Grace that taught...
my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear...
the hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares...
we have already come.
T'was Grace that brought us safe thus far...
and Grace will lead us home.

The Lord has promised good to me...
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be...
as long as life endures.

When we've been here ten thousand years...
bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise...
then when we've first begun.

"Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me....
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now, I see.

The center where I work had a fire today.

Here's the strange part. The director had informed us in a meeting last week that we would start having fire drills more often, and that she might schedule some when the children are sleeping at rest time. Thoughts of how difficult a task waking those kids up off their beds and getting them out of the building from two floors up would be.

Well today, of course, while the kids are sound asleep, I hear from the hall way.. "That thing is smoking!" "Is it sparking?" "Yeah a little..." "woooosh.." "Oh no!" "Pull the alarm!" "Get the kids out!" Smoke was pouring from the classroom directly across the hall from mine. This was no drill. A baseboard heater had gone up in flames.

I didn't even wait for them to pull the alarm. I started snatching little bodies up off their beds two at a time and standing them on their feet. All I could think to do was repeatedly tell them "There's a fire! Wake up! Follow Mrs. Bowen downstairs! Fire, fire fire!"

You know the toddlers you see on those "My baby loves to eat and I'm not going to stop her!" talk shows? Well I have one of those kids in my class.. and all 67lbs of her refuses to wake up. I shook her with one hand as I pulled another little girl up with the other. She wouldn't get up so I bent over, snatched her up off the bed and stood her on her feet. She sat down, and I pulled her up again and pushed her down the hall to the stairs, her screaming a bloody fit the entire way. Did I mention that this child weights 67lbs?? I feel like telling her parents not only is this child in danger because it's unhealthy for a three year old to be that big, but also that they're making my getting her out of the room in case of a emergancy almost impossible.

Folks, if she had been normal size or even mildly overweight, I would have just tucked her under one arm and carried her down the stairs kicking and screaming, problem solved. But I had all I could do to lift her from the bed and set her on the floor, much less pick her up and put her on my hip. I'll admit to not having a lot of upper body strength, but I'm not a frail little girl. At 5'8" and 170lbs, I can hold my own. But this kid? Forget it.. I would have had better luck rolling her down the stairs.

We got them all outside in record time, under a minute and a half. The bad part was that the babies were freezing. It was snowing/raining outside, and they had no shoes or socks or coats or hats. We (the teachers) kept running back into the building to get their clothes and finally had them all dressed after about twenty minutes. The firemen came and put the fire out, (which ate half of the wall in the three year old class where the it all started), we got the kids back inside in one of the first floor classrooms. I ended up calling every parent to tell them to come get their kids.

That conversation sounded a lot like this in 95% of the cases.
Me: Hi this is Ms. Smith from the Waverly Center.
Them: Yes?
Me: I want you to know before I begin that everyone is perfectly ok.
Them: What happened?
Me: The center had a small fire today when a base heater caught fire.
Them: Oh my God.
Me: Remember, everyone's fine, but we don't any electricity and we're calling to ask that parents pick up their kids ASAP.
Them: Ok I'll be right there.
Me: Thanks, and remember, your kids are fine, a little shaken, but fine.
Them: Ok, thank you.

Sigh. I won't be making anymore comments like "Wow that would suck if that happened." Seems like idle thoughts turn into reality too quickly around here. I'm hoping to get photo documentation and post it tomorrow. The firemen had to knock a hole in the wall to put out the fire, so it's sure to be a big mess.

Public Service Announcement: I'll be purchasing a smoke dectector for my bedroom tomorrow. Do you have one for yours? And if you do, have you checked the batteries recently?


Great Grandma Mittie May(my paternal great grandmother), her son Alfred (my paternal grandfather), and me. The comparison continues. Very strange to see a picture of someone who has your face from 80+ years ago. She even shares my name.. May and Amy.. Coincidence? I think not!

I have the I wants. Here's my list.

I want to be in the sun, warm, and tan.
I want to be able to run everyday after work.
I want the snow to go away.
I want to go shopping.
I want to move out.
I want to weigh 155lbs.
I want meet Zann.
I want to see Aerosmith.
I want to learn to dance.
I want to play my saxophone more often.
I want my work environment to be more inviting.
I want to be undesirable in some man's eyes.
I want a clearly defined future.
I want Stephanie to pick a name for her kid already.
I want my brother and his girl to be happy forever.
I want my sister to be safe always.
I want my dad to be healthy.
I want my mom to have someone take care of her for once.
I want to learn to spend money without feeling guilty.
I want to not pass out when I go to the doctor's.
I want to reach every child's heart I come in contact with.
I want people to stop using my stuff without asking.

I could go on forever. So many wants... so many ways to grow.

Theodore Roosevelt
"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."

See what snow in March does to me?


Have you ever wished that you could control the weather outside, much like you control the dimmer light in your room? I love sleeping when it's raining outside, but then once I wake up, I'm ready for a little sunshine and can't have any. I suppose it wouldn't work well if everyone had this power, I mean, there are way too many people in this world to be able to do that sort of thing. But I wouldn't mind being in control of the weather.... Random thought brought to you by Grace.


...and then there were fourWhile on another exciting adventure at the local deli, our Terrible Trio ran into the kneeling black ninja. Our heroes rescued him from the bowels of a giant egg dispenser. Reunited with his long lost mates, KBN vowed to fight crime alongside his comrades. Evil beware!

The search continues for yellow ninja, orange ninja, and green ninja! Updates to come.

I've been called a lot of things... Grace, clumsy, accident prone, etc. I've only ever had one name in the internet world, however (Zoot). Zann can attest to that for she's known me from the first day of my technological journey. Why do they call me Zoot? Meet my namesake.

Assessment has finally ended. I feel I can function at a normal level again now that some big-wig from the state department isn't breathing down my neck. I've not heard the final outcome of the visit yet, but I was informed of one, and only one, complaint the assessor had with my room.

Apparently, she wasn't thrilled that I had all of the children doing an art project together at the same time yesterday. I know full well that the system would rather me have a handful of kids doing the project while the rest are dispersed throughout the rest of the room, partaking in various other tasks. You know what I say to that? Bight me.

I've found the kids really enjoy doing projects all together. They enjoy being on the same page as everyone else. Quite frankly, it's easier for me to do things this way because I can do an entire project in an hours time, instead of doing the same project six times with six different groups of children. (If you're a frequent visitor to the site, you'll also remember that 95% of the time I'm in the room by myself, running the projects alone because my co-workers are off gallivanting down Myrtle Avenue.) I don't have to hear, "I want to do art toooooo...." or "When is it my turn???" three hundred times. I also don't have to divide my attention and pretend I have sixteen eyes that work independently to watch all the other activities going on in the classroom.

At any rate, I'm sure the assessor made the comment just to have something to complain about because she couldn't find anything else to write up. All that matters is that the kids are happy, my room is running smoothly, and I'm not pulling my hair out. Being a teacher means finding what works for each child... not following some "rule" some self-proclaimed higher being who spends most of his/her time in an office no where near children declared lord only knows how many years ago.

And that's all I have to say about that.


How incredibly amazing is this Anne Geddes photo? Babies. I want them. My apologizes for the photoblog status recently.

The center I work at is being assessed by the state agency. That means that everything that's been let slide in the last two years must be thrown together at the last moment. Administrators seem to like to do that to their teachers this time of year. At least I finally received permission to rearrange my classroom, and let me tell you, it looks one hundred times better than it did when I inherited the place. At any rate, assessment was today, and will continue tomorrow. Friday I'll be in the free and clear. Look for more interesting posts then. In the mean time, admire this beautiful baby bathed in light.


You couldn't just rent an Acura like a normal ninja... You had to get a dragon!
The third ninja has been added to the collection! My army is growing.