Friday, May 13, 2011

Bloggers Anonymus

My name is Lourie and I am a Blog-Aholic.  I didn't know this about myself until yesterday.  I was happily reading blogs.  I even managed to comment on a couple.  All was right with the world until I noticed something was off.  I was not receiving any comments from my post.  Well wait, there were two.  But then nothing.  My anxiety spiked as I thought surely I must have offended someone...all ten  of you.  Why else would my comments be so lacking?  And then I noticed as I tried to comment, blogger told me that it was in "read only" mode.  What the what???  And well, you all know what happened. 

I even set up new blogs.  I am not including the links...yet as I am not even sure I will use them yet.  But...it's good to know there are so many choices out there for addicts like me.  I hope you all have a beautiful weekend!  See you Monday....I hope!

What did you do while Blogger was out?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Distraction

SQUIRREL!

Our lives are filled with distraction.  Kids.  TV.  Computers.  Phones.  There is rarely a moment that is actually quiet. We are always multi-tasking; trying to walk and chew gum at the same time.  I am guilty of multi-tasking.  So much so that my children believe they can all talk to me at once and pull me in three different directions.   Is it any wonder that most days I am reduced to thinking like "Dug" from Up?  I have taken silly personality quizzes to be told I am:  Dory--you know the short term memory fish and Rose Nylund.  I must admit, their character types do fit me.  However, I would much rather be sharp tongued like Sophia.  Do you see what just happened there?  I totally derailed.  What was I getting at?  Oh yeah... distraction.

Distraction is a part of every day life.  The trick is how to find that peace.  It means turning off the TV.  It means, at the very least, silencing the phones, and dare I say it....turning off the computers.  But only for a short time.  I mean let's be realistic here.  Once the sounds are off, it is amazing how much our minds open up and clear. We are able to think.  What about the kids?  Yeah, I have looked for and tried to create a mute button.  Alas, it is not possible.  So, the next best thing, send them outside.  It's good for them and it's good for you.  Remember we played outside for hours.  Wasn't that awesome?  Our parents didn't play with us for all those hours, we played with our friends or our sibs.  I did it again.  I derailed.  I guess I am too distracted by the fact, that I have to grocery shop and I am  borrowed time since my son will be getting out of school in just two hours.

How do you stay focused?  What's distracting you?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

DWTS Instant Dance

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Tonight the couples are challenged with two dances.  One of which is an instant dance.  In the instant dance, they are not given their music until after they perform their first dance live.  They literally have about 20 minutes to put their routine to music.

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Chelsea Kane and Mark Ballas 1-800-868-3401

Chelsea and Mark have a talk about their scores and criticisms from last week.  This week they want to wow the judges.

Their waltz started with them on the floor.  A cool effect with the lighting made it look like they were laying on a sandy beach with the waves rolling in around them.  The dance in my humble opinion was very pretty and artistic.  Though I am thinking Len might not like it.  Again.

Len said that there was too much theatrics which causes it to be less of a dance, but that overall he liked it.  Well I guess I called that one.

Bruno applauded Mark for finally finding the pefrect setting for Chelsea to shine like the perfect jewel she is!

Carrie Ann explained that you have to earn perfection. She went onto say that something very different happened on the dance floor and that she in fact earned it.

Scores:
Carrie Ann:  10
Len: 9
Bruno: 10
Total: 29

Their song for the instant dance:  Get Busy  By  Sean Paul

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 Hines Ward and Kym Johnson 1-800-868-3403

Hines and Kym sink to spying on the competition this week!!  Actually, they were wacthing dances by Ralph.  She wants him to bring out the theatrics the way Ralph does.  Their dance is the foxtrot.  And in the dance, is a proposal.  It was fun.  Lots and lots of fun!

Bruno shouted, "Hines yes yes yes!  That was a performance!"  He called him Fred Astaire. 

Carrie Ann disagreed saying he was not Fred Astaire, but Gene Kelley!

Len told him that despite his feet being a little flat, he had great appeal and that his personality radiates. He added that it was a joyful experience to watch him. 

Scores:
Carrie Ann: 9
Len: 9
Bruno: 10
Total: 28

Instant Dance Song:  Chantilly Lace

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 Romeo and Chelsie Hightower 1-800-868-3405

Romeo and Chelsie dance the Tango.  Chelsie gets...gets...."dancer's block?"  She says she is uninspired.  And to add to the pressure, she explains to Romeo that this is like the Olympics of Ballroom and should be treated as such.

The dance was pretty good, but there was this huge black bow on the backside of Chelsie's dress.  I found it very distracting and it took away from the dance.


Carrie Ann said that he was dancing like he meant it and that it was one of his best dances ever.

Len reminded him that last week he told him to "Up his game." and then told him that this week he did.

Bruno said he was strong and danced like a real man.

Scores:
Carrie Ann:  9
Len: 9
Bruno: 9
Total: 27

Instant Dance Song: Tequillia

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Ralph Macchio and Karina Smirnoff 1-800-868-3408

Last week, Ralph was complaining of knee pain.  Let's remember he will be 50 this year.  Fifty people.  Don't let that baby face fool you.  And I can feel his pain.  I have bad knees.  I felt his pain.  Turns out he had...had a Baker's Cyst behind his knee.  To be safe, they took him to be seen by a specialist and had an MRI done.  If I ever have to do this again, I want to do it like he did.  OPEN MRI!  The doctor told him it burst, but the good news was no tears were seen.  The next day in rehearsal during a very simple move that knee buckled under him and he went down. They lost not hours but days of rehearsal.  They ended up with a total of 9 hours versus 40.  Their Viennese Waltz was dark and twisty.  I really liked it.  Karina show cases him quit well.

Len said that due to the injury, and lack of rehearsal the dance lacked polish.  But he said Ralph had nice movement and that they did a great job.

Bruno said they were fascinating, memorizing vampire lovers. He said that it was astonishing that he managed to do what he did with his injury.

Carrie Ann said that they danced with grace and beauty but that a few times the injury took away from the dance.  (she will judge accordingly!)

Scores:
CA:  8
Len: 8
Bruno: 9
Total: 25  (Not too bad I guess....but seriously this was an awesome dance.  Would love to see them do it when he is better!  Also I was real surprised they didn't give him a shot or something for the pain!)

Instant Dance Song:  Stuck in the Middle

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 Kirstie Alley and Maks Chmerkovskiy 1-800-868-3411

Maks and Kirstie will dance The Argentine Tango.  This dance requires a lot of attention to detail.  During rehearsals, Kirstie had more than one fall, one of which was off stage in the rehearsal room. It was then that Maks calls it quits for the day.  He confronted Kirstie asking her how many calories she was taking in each day.  Her response: 1400.  WTH???  She is dancing 12 hours a day, she could be eating a 2500 calorie diet and still lose weight.

Their dance is sultry and despite all those falls, Kirstie nails it.


Bruno said it was "fabulous sensual, sultry with just a hint of aggression and the right amount of passion leading to the ultimate seduction."He added that her body is shrinking, but her talent is huge!

Carrie Ann said that she felt like she was watching real-life acted out in front of her.  She added that the Cha-Cha WAS Kirstie's best dance, but tonight she topped it.

Len said this dance was about creating a mood and that they captured that feeling. "It was hot.... I'm surprised Maks only took his hat off!"

Scores:
CA:  9
Len: 9
Bruno: 10
Total: 28

Song:  Cobrastyle (Kirstie said she has never heard this song.  That makes two of us gal!)
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Chelsea and Mark dance the salsa for their instant dance.  While I really didn't care for the music, the dance was amazing.  If she doesn't go to the finals something is wrong.

Len said that he was very impressed.  He noted she was a little nervous at first, but once she got comfortable it all clicked.

Bruno commended them for doing such incredible job with such difficult choreography.

Carrie Ann said that although they did very well with the choreography, there was no connection with the music.   

Socres:
Carrie Ann:  8
Len: 9
Bruno: 9
Total:  26/55/60

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Hines and Kym dance the Jive.  Hines struggled in rehearsal without the music.  I wouldn't be able to do it WITH the music!!!  When it came time dance though, he was spot on.  And is it just me, or does Kym look a whole lot like Olivia Newton-John (as Sandy in Grease) with that ponytail?

Bruno said that the energy is very good, but that all his kicks were flat footed. He compared Hines to a penguin.

Carrie Ann begged to differ saying he did an amazing job. "The Jive is a hard dance,  And you were right there.  Right with the music!"

Len said, "All work and no play makes a good dancer.  You are a worker.  This is a real tough dance  And you've done a fantastic job!!

Scores:
Carrie Ann:  9
Len: 9
Bruno: 8
Total: 26/54/60

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Romeo and Chelsie dance the Salsa.  To me, it seemed as if Chelsie was almost  dancing around him.  She did most of the movement.

Carrie Ann told them that at first it felt like they were at a club, but that later it felt like they got out of sync.  Chelsie agreed.

Len gushed about it. "I loved it!!  I was with it.  There was a tiny incident, but  what does it matter??"

Bruno asked, "Am I losing my mind or did they change his medication??"  Tom came right back with, "Those are two separate issues."  Bruno managed to tell them they needed to keep the fluidity going before arguing amongst the judges ensued.  Quiet you three!  I will put you each in a corner!

Scores:
CA: 8
Len: 9
Bruno: 8
Total:  25/52/60

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Karina and Ralph are dancing The Cha-Cha.  The dance began with Ralph sitting on the steps with his bad leg stretched out.  Karina beckoned him to dance and he refused pointing to the knee.  Using a Karate Kid reference, Karina clapped her hands together and rubbed them and then placed them on his knee a la Mr. Miyagi. The dance was pretty good, but he was hurting.

Len said he admired Ralph's perservance and dedication, but told him that something has to give; and it was this cha cha.

Bruno said despite doing very well coping with it all the cha cha is all about action.

Carrie Ann echoed that it was amazing he was able to pull it off.  She told him he was on every beat, but that overall something was lost.

Scores:
CA:  7
Len: 7
Bruno: 7
Total: 21/46/60



Kirstie and Maks  dance The Salsa.  Despite another fall during the 20 minutes of rehearsal time with music, she did a good job and stayed up right.


Bruno said it was a classic salsa that was smoothe and slow, but that they lost sync. 

Carrie Ann disagreed saying that they were totally in sync

Len agreed that it was slower and more rhythmic, but that it lacked impact.

Scores:
CA:  8
Len: 9
Bruno: 8
Total: 25/53/60

Another tense results show last night.  I was nearly sick again.  And going home is:  Romeo.  He redeemed the family name in his eight week run and also grew a little in the process.  See you at the finale, Romeo.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Status Quote

CAGirl
It's been a month already?  A month to collect the funny and strange things people are saying.  Can you imagine if we just randomly announced OUT LOUD what we put on our FB status or Tweets.  Well picture that now.  Picture people just announcing to the world the following updates, and then link up and play along with us!  
 
I never realized how much Obama and I have in common...I wasn't invited to the Royal Wedding either.  I think my invitation was lost in the mail.
One of the highlights of my childhood was talking into the fan to hear my robot voice.  I still like doing that.
I think we should remove all warning labels and let natural selection take it's course.  That might take out most of the population.
Thinking of becoming a volunteer firefighter. Maybe go down the pole once or twice and then quit. Maybe pet the dalmatian and pose for the calendar.  What month?
If you think the way to a mans heart is through his stomach, you're aiming too high. :) *snicker*
Every girl in the world can look at Kate Middleton and say, "I too can marry a jobless bald guy that still lives with his grandmother." Even in royalty there are loafers.
Son: Mommy, what's inside your ear?
Mom: The rest of your ear.
Son: Well, the inside of my ear tastes disgusting!
Mom: Oh, that's called earwax
Son: It tastes bad every day.  Hmmmm...is it good that it tastes bad everyday?  Or would it be worse if it only tasted bad sometimes?
Karma is like a rubber band, it can only be stretched so far before it comes back & smacks you in the face. Saw a shirt on Saturday that said:  Karma never forgets.  Love it.
Of course the bag that falls out of the back of the van when I opened the door was the bag with the eggs What is it with eggs?  All my Easter eggs froze and exploded.
Hahahaha!  My son just ran out of the room claiming, "I gotta go to the loo!"Okay so this one was MINE.  He recently wanted to know how to say toilet in "English."  Not sure why or where that came from, but for a few days we were saying, "loo."
In the past 2 hours Sisi has: 1. knocked down both babies(intentionally, while I was watching) 2.Yanked out B's hairdo 3. Swung on the car bike rack like a jungle gym 4.Taken a crayon to S's vanity and mirror. I'm sooo ready for all-day school, and she is only 4 :)  Mama needs a time out with some chocolate.  Lots.
 
 

Monday, May 9, 2011

It's That Time of Year

The teacher passed out the bubble answer sheets first.  The chatter that had only moments ago filled the room had been replaced by the building tension, shuffling of feet and shifting in seats.  Next came the test booklet; sealed of course.  The tension was growing thicker and thicker.  Even the clock seemed to tick louder.  Pencils were within centimeters of being grabbed as instructions were given.  Hearts pounded.  Sweat beaded.  Breathing became shallow.  And then, "Begin."

Standardized testing and reporting; or STAR begins today.  In VA, it was called "Standards of Learning" or for short, SOL.  Well when I was a kid, SOL stood for something else entirely and it was something you did not want to be. 

Ever since she has been in school, Kristin has stressed almost to the point of panic attacks over these tests.  She says teachers put a lot of pressure on the kids.  I think that may be only slightly true.  I say slightly because  young people interpret things so differently than we do.  "Do your very best!" they might also say,  "Try as hard as you can."  

This is a rough time for students and teachers alike.  The teachers have enough on their plate as they tie all the loose ends of the school year that once again has breezed past us.  They also are cheering the kids on to do their very best on these tests.  The kids in turn feel more pressure.  It's a vicious cycle.  I have seen kids become physically ill over this.  Let me clarify, I do not blame teachers for this.  We all create our own stress levels.  In fact, teachers themselves are just as stressed, if not more than our kids.  So the question is, who is this time of year hardest on:  the kids, the teachers or the parents? 

I wish all your school age kids good luck during their testing.  Maybe a post testing celebration is in order!

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