The Flag, the Funeral and the Conference

Last week was hectic. Really hectic.

Monday: Packed for a week’s trip. Finished running errands and getting ready by 1am.

Tuesday: Up at 6am. Out the door by 7:30am. Funeral at 11:45am at Ft. Logan in Denver. After the funeral, the Thomas family, Dan and I went out for breakfast/lunch at the Littleton Cafe, which use to be an IHOP. In fact, it was the IHOP that John and I use to go to for breakfast before speech meetings. It was great. Granted, the cafe was probably glad when the 22-23 of us finally left.  After that, we headed over to Judy’s house and visited for a while. When Dan and I got ready to leave, Erin asked me to wait. He had something for me. It was the flag that he’d been presented with as eldest son. He said that as I had been the military wife for 17 years, that I should have it.

John Thomas' flag

Later that night, we went to the wake held by the SCA. It was lovely. Lots of good food, friends and drink.

Wednesday: After sleeping in, and a brief trip to IKEA, we headed to Colorado Springs for the CASB conference. We checked into the hotel and collapsed.

Thursday-Sunday: The Colorado Association of School Boards 75th Annual Winter Conference. It was a good one. I didn’t get elected to the CASB board, but I will run again next year. Learned a lot. Saw a lot of people and made some new connections. I will have a bunch of stuff to tell my board.

Today. Catch up day. Job day. Deal with insurance day. My head is spinning and it isn’t even noon yet. Oh, and the week isn’t slowing down yet. Tomorrow is the school board meeting. Wednesday, we go shopping in Pueblo. Saturday is John’s memorial down here at the library. sigh….

Oh what a crazy month!

This month has been crazy. Chaotic. Dizzying. Now, I thought it was a little crazy, because I spent most of the first week at the CASB Winter Conference. This is the big school board association conference held every year at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. It was a very good, although COLD conference. Average temperature was about 13F outside for most of the week.

I went up on the 4th, as I was presenting at the New Boardmember’s Boot Camp Workshop. 🙂 Five minutes of fame. LOL! Well, it started snowing on Wednesday morning and I was taking a school district vehicle. The VAN. A huge 12 passenger van, which made me feel like a five year old. I nearly needed a step ladder to climb in. Granted, it was nice to have the weight, as I was driving in snow and on ice most of the time.

This was also the first time in almost a year that Dan couldn’t come with me. As it was so cold, he stayed home to keep Brandy from turning into a Pupcicle. We had no one to feed her or dog sit her, so there was no choice but for him to stay.

Thursday was great. I went to my first session about Rural districts and then presented that afternoon. Five minutes on ‘how data is important.’ The rest of the conference was good, and I was very glad to get home on Sunday. Once I got home, we went and picked Morgan up from La Junta. Monday, I spent time with Daniel and Angela. We went shopping in Pueblo and had a great time. I should have gone to a District Accountability meeting, but I didn’t make it.

Tuesday was our board meeting. A long one, but good. Thursday was busy. Two events. A school holiday party and a school district office party. Sort of stacked together, but we managed both. 🙂 Good thing they were next door to each other.

Friday, we drove to Denver. We did a bit of shopping and on Saturday we saw our computer client. Got home late Sunday. The week started out busy. A trip to Pueblo, work for Dan, the holiday program at Gardner on Wednesday, cleaning my parents house and then up to Denver again on Thursday because our computer client was having weird issues. Friday we did shopping and then drove home late.

Saturday was Solstice. Yule. We got up at dawn and enjoyed the sun rise. Then instead of a nice breakfast, we had to check on the school wrestling tournament. Should have been a 10 minute stop. Nope. It wasn’t. At noon, I left to go help my dad stack a cord of firewood. I was done in 90 minutes, and went back to the wrestling tournament. We were there till about 7pm. Afterwards, we grabbed dinner and then collapsed in bed.

We woke up to snow this morning. Today we did odd jobs around the house and tried to relax a bit. Oh, and Dan built a faux satellite transmitter to test his ground station. The rest of the week isn’t looking much calmer.

This is the song that I woke up with on Solstice.

Flamin’ June!

Or should I say Windy? Here it is the 3rd of June, and the wind just hasn’t stopped.

Friday we went to Pueblo for some needed shopping and just plain relaxation. We got soil for the raised beds, plumbing bits for the Wendy House, a staple gun (wheee!!!! ) and groceries. When we got home, we could smell smoke and discovered that HWY 160 was closed off. There was a fire in town. The Main Event, also locally known as the Walsenburg Walmart had a fire behind it. We looked at the fire for a bit and then went home.

Saturday, I went to Rock Ledge Ranch, in Colorado Springs. They were having a sheep shearing and spinning event. I was suppose to meet a friend there, but her ride didn’t appear. I still had a great time though. It’s well worth the visit. I loved the houses and walking around the grounds.

Afterwards, I went to Joann’s and got some stuff for Battlemoor. It’s in just over 2 months! I have some sewing to do and I’m going to try and make some more nalbinding needles. 🙂

Sunday was suppose to be a workday around the house. Well… we slept in. While Dan worked on his school work, I did a little gardening, and cleaned house. Next weekend though is all about the plumbing! 🙂 Who’d have thought the idea of running water could make a person so happy? 🙂

It’s the snow storm that never ends…

Well once again, Mother Nature played chicken with us and we lost. After horrid winds on Sunday, warmth up to about 70 yesterday, we woke to clouds and damp this morning. I thought it would be rain. Smelled like rain. Looked like rain. Hoped it would be rain.

So, I went off to the County Commissioners meeting to hear the proclamation of Ludlow Centennial Year. This Saturday, April 20th is the 99th anniversary of that horrid day. So, the state has decided to have a year long event. Our three commissioners signed the proclamation and handed it to our local UMW representative. In June there is usually a memorial service out at Ludlow. I’ve written about this event before. Here and here. I will be writing more about it as the year goes on.

Once that was done, I did my usual Wednesday thing. Vacuumed my mom’s house and did laundry. I was just getting ready to leave when I realized that it was SNOWING! Oh My was it snowing. Big Fat Flakes. Instead of heading to the Laundromat to dry my clothes, I picked up Dan. We headed out to George’s and had lunch. We celebrated our 9th anniversary with pie. 🙂

Afterwards we stopped by my parents as they had just returned from Colorado Springs and Pueblo. They brought us fried cinnamon rolls. Yum! We went to the grocery, then to the Laundromat and dried clothes.

Now we are home and curled up next to the wood stove keeping warm and working on our computers. Oh, and watching snow fall on top of the 5-6 inches we have from this storm already.

Quiet at last

… for at least a little while. Erin came by to visit with Natalie on Thursday. We had pizza and chatted until he had to get back to his truck around 9pm. Friday we went to Pueblo. We took Natalie to Bingo Burger for dinner and then we looked around in various shops for a light coat for me. No luck. Finally around 9:30pm, we took Natalie to the bus station and saw her off to Austin Texas. After a quick stop for a drink, we drove to La Junta and picked up Morgan. She had a meeting in Colorado Springs the next morning. We got in late, up early and headed out.

The meeting was a People to People meeting about a trip to Australia. Morgan was really excited about this, but as the meeting wore on, it was apparent to us that Morgan had ‘out grown’ what People to People could offer. That jump in maturity has sent her straight out of PtP’s league. So, it was a rather sad trio that drove home. We are now thinking of just raising the money for Morgan to go visit Natalie in Oxford.

To take the edge off, we went to the Citadel Mall and got Greek gyros for lunch. Yum! Then we did the great coat hunt for me again. In the end, we gave up and I bought a pattern and material for a coat. I’ll be making that this week. (hopefully). We drove home and after a bit of dinner, headed to bed.

We slept in for the first time in nearly 8 weeks! It was glorious!!! We got up, pottered about and then after watching the Space x launch, had a bit of dinner and then drove Morgan back to La Junta. It was a nice ride home, as we watched rabbits zip across the highway. We also talked a bit about my project for NaNoWriMo. (National Novel Writing Month) I’ve decided to give it a try again. Last time my computer died. We talked about the plot, some characters and where I’d like things to go. We discussed just how much I was going to have to pick his brain too. 🙂

Today, it was back to the grind. A much quieter house now that the girls are gone, but good to be back to a more ‘normal’ (?) schedule.

Meetings and concerts and printers Oh My!

April has been a busy month. Lots of school board meetings and plenty of long nights. Yesterday was a prime example of life around here.

7:am- Arrive at the bus garage to meet Dawn Olson our superintendent and head for Colorado Springs for a Professional Learning Committee meeting.

9:00am to 3pm- PLC meeting with teachers, superintendents, board members from 11 districts, and CDE. Lunch included.

3:15-4:25- Drive home from Colorado Springs

4:30-5:20pm- Attended Jeanne Wilkins retirement party at Peakview School.

5:30pm- 8:15pm- Board workshop with David Benson and Iris Williams. Lots of good work towards becoming good board members. Dinner included

8:30pm – 9:30pm- Watched and listened to the last half of the Outside Track Celtic Concert at the Fox Theater.

9:45pm-10:30pm- home, relax and go to bed!

And today, Lots of pictures of Dan’s latest project. He built a 3D printer. A RepRap. To say that he’s pleased is an understatement. He still needs to work on some of the firmware and await the arrival of the plastic.

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Busy, Hectic Week

This week was something else. Monday I spent catching up on all the email from the weekend and met with Sandi Hansen of Edison Learning. She is working with our school district to help bring up our educational scores on the Colorado student assessment tests. (TCAP).

Tuesday was meeting day from hell. Dan and I had a Southeastern Workforce Investment Board meeting in La Junta. This was also the day that Colorado tried to blow all of it’s topsoil to Kansas. We had miles of dirt fog. So much dirt in the air that we couldn’t see. Tumbleweeds were passing us and we were going 65! It took 1 gallon of gas to get to La Junta and 3 to get home due to the wind.

At the meeting, we discussed the workforce/employment issues in our region. The map showing the regions can be found here. We also had a really good presentation on Demographics for regions 6 and 14, which is what we are according to the state. It was very interesting and we actually got to solve a question that the Demographers had. There was a statistical blip that they didn’t understand and I looked at it and knew in an instant what it was. There was a burst of households in the 44 to 65 yr range. They didn’t get it and I explained that it was the grandchildren coming to Huerfano County to occupy their grandparents houses. The reason I knew that was that I’m one of those. I escaped the big city, Littleton, to come down to Walsenburg to raise my family in a low cost, low crime/stress area.

After that meeting, we drove home, grabbed dinner and then headed to the board meeting. This was the first regular board meeting for RE-1 in February. All others had been special meetings and/or workshops. We got a lot accomplished and once again, there is more on that meeting on my other blog.

Wednesday should have been quiet. I got some stuff done around the office and then went to meet with David Benson around 4pm. He and his partner, Iris Williams are working to help our school district with trust issues. We have a situation whereby nearly 100% of the district dislikes/distrusts one person. Not healthy, and it is causing major issues. It was a really good discussion and we talked till nearly 5pm. Afterwards, I went to the library and then went to work to pick up Dan. We had to be to Peakview by 6pm to see a 4th grade play called the Emerald Egg. That was fun.

Thursday we were up early and went with my parents to Colorado Springs. Dad had his cancer checkup. Dan drove us home as Dad was a little loopy from the pain meds. We stopped at Romero’s for lunch. Yummm!

Friday was just as early a start. I had a State Youth Council meeting to be at in Denver. The weather was  bit nasty, so we left early. The meeting was very good. More info on that over on Untapped Potential. We drove home through bands of snow. We were going to stop in Pueblo for dinner, but with the snow, we changed our minds. Good thing we did as there was a huge car pileup accident due to the snow.

Friday was also Daniel’s 22nd birthday. 🙂

Saturday was sort of a stay in bed type day. We slept in, relaxed and did as little as possible. 🙂 Better yet, we went to Wonderful House in Trinidad with my parents. It was my parents way of thanking Dan for driving. They even promised him that he could bring a date if he wanted, or if he didn’t, they have this daughter…. that they’d set up as a blind date for him. ROFLOL!! Needless to say, there were a bunch of blind date jokes all evening.

Today is catch-up day. Dan has gone into work for the day and I’m writing blog posts, reading emails and cleaning house. Wheee!

For more school board adventures, check out my other blog, Untapped Potential

My busy week!

I have been trying to get into the swing of being the school board president. Aieeee!!! Lots of meetings. Tuesday Dawn and I went to a meeting at Trinidad State Junior College. TSJC. I wrote about it here. It was neat to meet the Lt. Gov and to see Felix again. Felix Lopez is on the Southeast Workforce Investment Board with Dan and so we see him at meetings.

I also went with Dan to the Colorado Rural Workforce Consortium Winter Meeting. That was up in Colorado Springs. Three days of Workforce info. Lots of good stuff to think about, process and put into use. One big thing they are starting is the Virtual Workforce Office. They are putting them in public libraries where there are no workforce offices. This is really interesting and the possibilities are expanding.

Next week is not slowing down, and so I am spending the weekend getting over the last of my ‘cold’. I had an asthma attack that settled in my lungs. I sound like I’m breathing through a sponge. ugh. Of course, the weather deities are having fun. Woke up to about 6 inches of snow this morning. Brrrr!

Think Big Conference!

Dan and I went to a Think Big Conference sponsored by the Colorado Workforce and department of Labor and Employment this week. Monday through Friday. It was really good. The worst part was some technical hiccups with power point presentations. The best was the speaker on the last day. Robert Wendover spoke about the generations and the Millennial Mind. I thought it was going to be a bomb, because the guy looked like a total nerd. “How can that guy in his 50’s talk about people in their 20’s”  I thought. Well, he did it very well. I was surprised. Happily surprised.

I got to see my sister and her husband too. She works for the DOL&E. She was running an information booth. We got to visit for about an hour which was good.

Of course this conference started with temps in the 70’s and finished yesterday with it snowing as we left! BRRRRrrrrr!!! Colorado in the spring! Damn!!! Today of course it is cold and damp. We might get a high of 60. sigh.

Today is a kick back and take it easy day. I was so glad to sleep in my own bed last night! Oh, and tea. Our box of tea came yesterday. We’ve been out for a week. Akkkk!!! Which reminds me, I need more tea.