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Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Onomatopoeia is a word that imitates or suggests the source of the sound that it describes.

Examples of Onomatopoeia
(google images)

The "THUMP" that came from my basement!
By: Dylan Kennedy, 6th grade

It was a rainy day, my parents were out of the house and my sister was having a sleepover....I was home all alone. I made a fire in my fireplace to warm me up; I sat down to turn on my XBOX 360 when all fo a sudden, "THUMP" I froze....The strange noise came from my basement. "It must be the pipes", I thought out loud. "THUMP" it happened again even louder. I decided I should check it out. As soon as I got down there, "BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ" the lights went out, someone or something had turned the power out. I got my flashlight from my roo, "Batteries are dead." I was alone alone in the dark.

I was walking down the creaky stairs wondering what was lurking down in my basement. "AAHHHHHHHH" All of a sudden, a wailing scream echosed from the basement!!! "WAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!" There it was again, the most horrible blood curdling scream I have ever heard in  my entire life. I decided I would have to be brace and find whatever was down there and shut it up for good!!!

When I got down to the basement floor, thwole place was destroyed. "How can I explain this to Dad?" I thought. Out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw something strange. "My eyes must be playing tricks on me" I saild out loud.  "RROOOOOAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRR!!!" I nearly jumped into my own arms when I heard that! I now knew that whatever was down here was real and aggresive. Then I saw it, the most disgusting thing I have ever seen in my whole life! It was covered in slime from had to toe and his mouth had over twenty teeth that made up over half of his face! I tried to attack but I was no match for the beast, it jumped on me, my head hit the hard concrete floor, and then I blacked out...........

THE END???????

Dylan's teacher comments: "Great use of Onomatopeoeia! Are you going to write a sequel?"
Grade: 30/30 100%  A+

Mother's comments: Aww! Loved it, but then again I am well aware that I am slightly biased. :)

Also, I must make the following clarifications. This is in fact creative writing, because Dylan would NEVER be allowed to start a fire when he is home ALONE by himself. LOL. I also noticed that he loves CAPITALIZING FOR EMPHASIS in his writing JUST as much as I DO!!!!! Ha! We also share a deep love for the exclamation mark, I see!!!!!  LOL. My favorite part of the paper was "I was so scared I almost jumped into my own arms." LOL Dylan has always had a way with words. Proud of you, Dyl.

the view from here

Yep, it is snowing. Again. Here. In Ohio. Snow. Uh-huh. It looks like a Winter Spring Wonderland in our backyard. See?!

Where are you, Spring? Why must you play little tricks on my mind?  My bulbs are so determined to make their appearance this Spring. I hope they hang in there!

Yep, I took all these pictures from inside the house. I was warm and cozy and couldn't bear to head out in the cold. Don't judge me! I have to admit that here is something very pretty about the snow, and I am glad I got to see it one more time....

before we head down south to North Carolina on Friday morning! Woo-Hoo!

Monday, March 28, 2011

"do re mi fa so la te da"

One thing I always wanted to do growing up was learn how to play a musical instrument. Unfortunately I never learned! (probably because in no way, shape, or form am I gifted musically~sigh....oh well....Ha!)  I had a friend in high school, that used to play "Fur Elise" by Beethoven for me on the piano. It was so beautiful. I.LOVED.IT. (If you don't know the song, just click below).

I would sit and watch her play, admiring her perfect posture and was completely mesmerized by her talent. Then I would ask her to PLEAAAAASE play it just one more time. She knew if we went to her house, that I would ask her to play it at least twice. She would roll her eyes, but she played it for me anyway. Now, 16 years later, when I hear that song it still makes me think of her. :)

That is one reason why it makes me so happy to hear the kids attempting to play it. We finally signed Dylan and Karsen up for piano lessons!! They started a month ago. I AM SO EXCITED. I feel like I am truly giving them an opportunity that I never had; to learn to read music and play an instrument. They have already learned quite a bit. The first night, I was so proud of them when they came home and proclaimed that they loved it! Dylan said he was a "natural". HA! However, Karsen is wayyy more diligent about practicing than he is. Not surprising.

Last night their teacher called me and told me that they were doing great, and she was very pleased with their progress. She also added that she sensed a "healthy degree of competition" between the two of them. HA!  She thought it could be a good thing if it meant they would work harder individually. I was thinking, "Yep, that sounds like Dylan and Karsen". It made me chuckle.

The night of their first practice after I tucked them into bed, I was heading downstairs and heard both of them singing "do re mi fa so la te da" over and over again to themselves. It was too cute. Awww <3 I can't wait for future recitals and to see where they choose to take this opportunity. Of course, I would love it if they learn to play "Fur Elise".

Saturday, March 26, 2011

eleven point five

Dylan participated in his 6th grade school play last night. I can't believe how grown up he looks.

How can you be almost bigger than your mother when you are only half way through your 11th year? 

He stil has a way to go before he catches up with his Daddy!

Friday, March 25, 2011

my first pharmacist interview

So, this past Wednesday I was wondering aimlessly around the mall, and I got a phone call about one of the jobs I applied to last week! It was actually THE job position that I most excited about because it is a Hospital Clinical Pharmacist position in an Anticoagulation Center. That basically means that it is a Pharmacist-ran only center that provides patient care to people that are on the drug warfarin/coumadin. When I was attempting to explain this to Chris he was like "HUH?!...what?.....ok?....is that a good thing?" LOL, Yes, it is a very good thing! I have had two student rotations in similar settings this past year, and I have enjoyed both of them! It is a slightly non-traditional role for a pharamacist, and that part appeals to me as well!

The Pharmacy manager asked me if I was available to interview the very next morning at 8:30am. I wanted to say, "look, you have no idea HOW available I am!" or "Listen, I need a J-O-B, so yes I will be there whenever you want me there."  Instead, I said, "Of course, and I am looking forward to meeting you. See you then." Then, I freaked out. I had bought a new suit a few weeks ago, going on nothing but faith that I would have an interview or two coming up. However, it did not fit perfectly. When I tried it on again, I realized it was actually very far from fitting at all. It needed to be majorly tailored in the worst way, but there was no time for that. So, I freaked out again. After a hour I realized that I could just wear the same suit that I wore when I initially interviewed for Pharmacy school way back when.

I woke up super early with a dusting of snow on the ground! Crazy! I arrived early, and everyone I met there was really nice. The interview lasted 3 hours!? THREE HOURS, I am a talker, but I was NOT talking the whole time at all. We talked about everything under the sun from Puerto Rico to Clinical Research. Pradaxa to Spanish. Work ethics to professionalism. He asked me deep, probing questions and then he asked me more general "get-to-know-you" kinda questions. He also asked me the stupid, on the spot interview questions that some people asked. This is the one that kinda stumped me:

In your past professional experience, tell me about a time that an employer did something that you did not agree with. How did you respond and deal with this conflict/situation?

*You could hear crickets chirping* I had absoulutely NOTHING. I generally don't have conflict in the workplace, but I knew this was not a good anwer. Finally, I said something about "communication" and how healthy communication can diffuse a great deal of many misunderstandings in the work place....Ughhh.....that is the one question that I keep replaying in my head, and almost 24 hrs later I still don't have a solid example or response. Other than that I nailed every question and feel good about my responses.  All in all, I really thought it went great! I should hear back from him within two weeks. !!!

Chris said there is no way they would talk to me for SO long if they weren't genuinely interested. I did my best. That's all I have! We will see what happens! *FINGERS CROSSED*

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face... Do the thing you think you cannot do." ~Eleanor Roosevelt

Thursday, March 24, 2011

blooming in ohio

Remember, I posted a couple weeks ago about being thrilled with the surprise bulbs that were peeking up out through the ground and snow? Just when I thought winter was going to last forever, I saw this sweet bulb blooming.

I was so excited to see hints of Spring. This bulb was the picture of hope for me! Today, I noticed that my little bulb was thriving and growing. Alot more green was also popping up all around it. I can't wait to see what color blooms in a few weeks!

Then I took the time to look around and appreciate the other small changes that were happening outside....even though it was raining this morning...I saw more promise all around...just behind my bulbs on the bushes that I thought to-be-sure were completely dead....I saw yellow.

and this afternoon as I was putting away folded laundry, I look out of Dylan's bedroom window....and
Be still my heart, I could not believe my eyes....I saw red. I almost cried a little bit. I definitely squealed. :)

Spring has officially arrived here in Ohio, and that makes me one happy girl. I was picking up the kids from after-school and making small talk with another Dad. He said that since we lived through one winter that makes us official "Northerners"....I am sure the look on my face said, "I doubt it!" Ha!

Then he said, "I bet you will really appreciate how warm and pretty Spring is now....". Now, I happen to agree with that. It was just about 55 degrees here yesterday, but it was quite pleasant. I also took a minute to appreciate the fact that Dylan is NOT fighting the annual "pollen war" that he always ends up losing with his allergies in North Carolina. He has had relief, he can breathe and he's not completely miserable..and for that I am thankful. For that reason alone~ I like Ohio. :)

I can't end this post without also saying that they are calling for snow today. Oh my word~Ha! Oh well, this is still progress, people. Green, yellow and red....officially means that tank top and flip flop weather can't be too far away. I have never wanted a sunburn so bad in my life (.....I'm kidding..kinda...!!). Ha! Happy Spring 2011!

It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade. ~Charles Dickens

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

it makes me happy

It makes me so happy to see you
 smiling when I pick you up from school.
Is it because you did well on a Math test?
Is it because you are starving and you know
we have plenty of Pringles at home?
Highly likely.....
Or could it be that you are happy to see me?
Is it because your cell phone is at home
and you are excited to start texting your friends?
I bet....
Or because you missed Miley during the day
and you wanna get home to play ball?
Or maybe it is because you love your new school and friends?
OR Could it be....
about a girl?
Regardless, it warms my heart to see you so happy here.

*cell phone pic of Dylan after I told him a girl named Erica sent him a text today.

You are worried about seeing him spend his early years in doing nothing. What! Is it nothing to be happy? Nothing to skip, play, and run around all day long? Never in his life will he be so busy again. ~Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Emile, 1762

Monday, March 21, 2011

fearlessly be yourself

I love how fearless Karsen is! Especially with fashion...She is our little diva. Stylist extraordinaire. Fashion critic. And even though I have always hated shopping for myself...going with her is a whole new experience. She opens my eyes to possibility...forces me to think outside of the box.....and we have a ton of fun! This past weekend we hit the outlets, but before we left I did something new and fun with her hair. Here is a peak:

 Here's another look in color...

Obviously, Karsen has quite a bit of hair

 and we are always quite challenged have fun trying different things. 

 Karsen is not afraid to encorporate a little bit a whole lotta color into her wardrobe. She is fearless when it comes blazing her own path AND being her own person. She makes me laugh when she sets out her outfit for the next day each night before bed. Always putting so much thought into each outfit.

This was her outfit for Saturday. Whoever says that turquoise, purple AND hot pink don't go together, well they were wrong! She is my little personal shopper, and I am not embarassed to admit just how much stock I put into her opinion. LOL. Each morning, she always gives her Daddy a thumbs UP or a thumbs DOWN on his shirt and tie combination. Most of the time he asks her to pick between two options and then he goes with her choice for that day. Her opinion matters! Ha!  In case you can't believe your eyes. Yes, those are leg warmers. Oh my.

 I love how Karsen is so fearless when it comes to being her own person!
 If only I can figure out a way to give her a little boost of confidence..... ;)

 “There is only one YOU for all time. Fearlessly be yourself.” ~Anthony Rapp

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

your daily dose of sarcasm*

I apologize if some of you have been sitting and waiting on the edge of your seats for me to answer these questions. I am being so sarcastic, but seriously, several questions have been asked over the last two weeks..and I am here to answer them!!

I posted a picture last week of our latest weekend family project.  We spent our entire Saturday giving our basement a much-needed makeover! WE LOVE the end result. I have been waiting for the sun to come out, so I could take some "AFTER" pics with some natural light flooding in down there. BWUAHHH! HAHAHA!

Ummm, that's not going to happen anytime soon. I am still feeling like Heather Cullen, although I did hear a rumor that the sun will show itself tomorrow. Yes, that sort of thing makes headlines around here. I can't wait to see squint my eyes in the bright light of the sun!!

Anywho, back to the basement. Chris had a vision (and since he is the artist and everything) I was fine with him making all the creative decisions and fully trusted that it would turn out great! He picked out the paint colors, and I was just part of his manual labor task force. Ha! No, I really love to paint. Almost as much as I love doing laundry! We all helped. See?

This picture prompted a nice, long lecture from me to Dylan about what it means to help with a happy heart. Does it look like Dylan has a happy heart here, people!? Ha! I doubt it! To give him credit, it was a loooong day and he did do is part when it was all said and done. He just needed more prodding along the way....and wasn't quite as obliging as others....

Karsen's face here cracks me up. I asked her to show my Campbell shirt (yes that is my shirt AND my necklace she has on)....so here she is representing my school. I was quite ok that she got paint all over it. :)  As for the colors on the walls....Chris wanted to go with a dark gray with some red contrasts. The color was officially "smoky ash". Well, once we got it on the walls, it looks more like "navy blue" to me.  What do you think?

Or maybe DUKE blue?! Which is completely OK with us, since we are lifelong fans AND they beat UNC (AGAIN) last weekend to become ACC Tournament CHAMPS, AGAIN!  WOO-HOO!

LET'S GOOO DUKE!! (google images)
So, we got the basement done and "AFTER" pics will come shortly! The final product is awesome, and Dylan has already had fun down there with having friends over! They thought the room was "epic", "beast", and "sick". These are all good things coming from 12 year old boys, or so I am told. Ha!

Speaking of BLUE.....I LOVE my graduation dress! It's BLUE! I wanted to go with a brighter color (to contrast my vampire-esque like post-winter skin-tone). Ha! It is cornflower blue, which is in between blue and turquoise! :) I can't wait to wear it!

This week has involved a ton of paperwork! I have applied to several more jobs, but have yet to hear from anyone yet. I also finally applied for the NAPLEX/MPJE. These are two seperate exams that I must take and pass in the state that I hope to be licensed as a Pharmacist and practice in. I am taking both of these for the state of OHIO! The NAPLEX tests your basic* Pharamcy knowledge base (basic being that they can ask anything about anything!).

The MPJE is the Jurisprudence exam that assesses my knowledge of Federal and OHIO-specific Pharmacy law. I have to take AND pass these both before I am offficially licensed and before I can become gainfully employed! Nerve-wracking, much?!

I have bought a (humongous) review book (that could also serve as a deadly weapon if-need-be) and today I am mailing the seperate application & fee to the Board of Pharmacy to apply for licensure. I have also registered for a OHIO NAPLEX review being held here in Columbus during Memorial Day weekend.  See, it is a confusing process with alot of steps, paperwork and fees involved! I will have spent almost $1000.00 this past week alone to just get to the point to take the exams. If you don't pass, you can't retake it for 90 days and you have to pay for it again. No pressure, right?!

(google images)
I was stressed out initially, but now I am just excited about all these final details. It is what I have been working toward for the past 5 years! I can see the light at the end of the tunnel even in (gray and rainy) Columbus! 

“It is during our darkest and most trying moments that we must focus to see the light.” Aristotle Onassis

Thursday, March 10, 2011

just call me heather cullen

Disclaimer: If you haven't read the Twilight books or have been hidden under a rock somewhere for the last few years-the references made within this post will mean absolutely nothing to you.

This past weekend I seemed to be in a much better mind-set. We woke up Sunday morning with snow on the ground. We headed to church and I said to Chris, that "there is something extra sweet about going to church with snow on the ground". He smiled.....

Now, 5 short days later and I am in a major funk. The past two days it has rained non-stop. And something just broke inside of me. When Chris got home on Tuesday, I felt (and looked ) like a zombie because it is just so gray outside. Why in the world am I so influenced by how the weather is outside? Ugh?! I have had awful thoughts about Columbus this week. Yesterday it was like the sun struggled and struggled and finally gave up and just completely FAILED to come up at all. And I may have said a bad word in my head about that. Just sayin'....

The day basically looked like dusk ALL day long. Then, I made things worse. I made the mistake of clicking on the 7 day foreceast....searching desperately for some hope. A change. BIG MISTAKE. HUGE. It was a long endless week of 37-42-ish degree temps and rain. Yuck and Yuck.

Then I had an epiphany....I realized that Columbus would be a great place for the whole Cullen family to live. Vampires would thrive in Columbus. It is gray, and the sun hasn't come out in forever. It would not burn their skin, it would just be pure paradise for a vampire. I, however, am not a vampire. I have been perpetually cold since forever. Like Edward. Just straight up cold.

Then I did myself in....yesterday I said the following out loud, "I prefer snow over rain anyday"....Guess what? They are calling for snow tonight. Yep. 1-3 inches will cover my sweet bulbs that are trying their best to break through the cold ground. I am hoping it will be short-lived and that the sun decides to show itself sooner rather than later. I don't want to feel like Heather Cullen. I would like to wear sunglasses again one day and not have to rely so much on my bronzer blush. Ha!

On a more positive note.....
  • I have applied to four more jobs, one in particular that I would be super excited about!
  • I am actually TEAM JACOB, so there is no way I could be Heather Cullen.
  • I have officially registered for the NAPLEX/MPJE. I still have sticker shock, but it's a means to an end.
  • We are getting our favorite take-out tonight. Comfort food. Yum.
  • I do love wood burning fires, and tonight will be a perfect night for one.
  • I found my graduation dress! Guess what color it is?
  • Dylan seems to be doing much better in school this week. Thank goodness.
  • I officially am almost, quite possibly, caught up on laundry!!! That's a miracle in itself.
I wanna end this post with a couple of pictures that epitomize summer to me.

country Karsen

Dylan wearing his Daddy's sunglasses

lazy days
There, I feel better now.

In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer. ~Albert Camus

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

wordless wednesday-team work

Alternate title: Wordless Wednesday~Cute butt

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

there is hope!

LOOK!!!! We have bulbs sprouting just outside our front door. Not just 1 or 2 but TWELVE-ish or so.....I saw them this morning and stopped dead in my tracks. I could barely believe it! I even bent down to touch them....they ARE REAL! YAYYYYY! This little sign was such a welcome sight for seasonal affected eyes. I just had to take a picture to share with you all. I may even set it as my profile pic on Facebook. THAT is how excited I am about this. Ha!

This morning, as Chris and I were getting up bright and early, we could hear the birds chirping outside.

Chris mumbled, "Those birds act like it's Spring or something." and I said
"Yep, they're in denial just like me. They act like it is warm outside or something. GRRRR!"

Um. GRUMPY, much?

Although it was only 30 degrees this morning, that is a long way from ZERO; which is how cold it was a month ago! It also got up to 51 degrees today and the sun was out. This is nothing short of a miracle. LOL. Maybe the birds and the bulbs know more than we do. Spring actually is on it's way....it is just being shy and likes to take it's time. There is hope!

In other news....I am busy busy...I thought I would slow down some with my month off. I have.....kinda-sorta. HA! It has been productive in lots of ways. My next major task is to complete the paperwork for the NAPLEX/MPJE, the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination that I will take after I graduate. I absolutely must pass before I can start working! Crucial!

Speaking of jobs, I have applied to not 1 or 2 but SEVEN-ish jobs so far! I got a big fat NO via email for one of them. "The position has been filled". Alrighty then....onward! I am waiting to hear from the others and still looking for more opportunities out there. I know the perfect job is waiting for me. I really hope to find something that will afford us some family balance and flexibility. I also want something slightly non-traditional. I can't explain it...I will just know it when I find it! I am hopeful!

Update: Just got another NO in the mail from the VA. I did not meet their "specialty experience requirement". Oh well, that commute was a little too long for my liking anyway. Still hopeful...

Thursday, March 3, 2011

playing catch-up

Life has slowed down a tad for me this week. Thank.the.LORD. I am OFF this month. Time to catch up on a few things today...

(google images)
1. Meet my hubby for lunch downtown. We don't know anyone here in OH, so we haven't had a date night in ages. It's long overdue. A date lunch will have to do. Sounds good to me. I might even get pretty for it. Ha!

2. Buy citrus candles today. The sun has been out 3 days in a row in Columbus. This is a first since October, people. I am going to burn some citrus candles and pretend that it is as warm outside as it looks through our family room windows. (Even though the thermometer says 27 degrees) Denial CAN be a good thing. Spring is right around the corner....it can't be much longer now, right?! RIGHT?

3. Talk with Chris and Dylan about their weekend project coming up. Mission: Basement makeover. They will do all the work...i.e...paint....I will just voice my opinions along the way. LOL. (No, really I will paint some....) Before and after pics will be posted here. :)

4. Tackle the MOUNTAIN that is our laundry on the spare room bed. It is huge. It is embarassing. It is proof that life has been too crazy for too long. I will do it today.

5. Enjoy a home-cooked crock pot meal. YUM! There's nothing quite like comfort food to soothe the soul. Today's special is pork tenderloin with rice and gravy.

6. Encouarge the kids to practice their piano lessons for this week. It makes me happy to hear them playing. :)

7. Watch the American Idol results show on the couch tonight with Karsen in the crook of my arm. Yes, we really love that show! And I really love Chris more for not rolling his eyes the whole time we watch it. Ha!

8. Allow myself to sloooooow down in general. Single-task. Be present. And disconnect.

Permission granted.

Deciduous Heather