Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Quotes that Make Me Old

I know. I know. I have been a terrible blogger and you will be disappointed to know that I don't have much tonight. I really do have lots, but I am crazy tired and have school stuff to get finished up before the morning. We have "All-American/Celebration" Day tomorrow. We are each having educational but fun class. I am setting up a Survivor game that was on the show this year. Hope it turns out fun. They are going to race to a puzzle table, solve a problem, locate the coordinate based on their answer. Then they will take their coordinates and criss cross ropes to discover some letters in a missing saying.

School is out soon which means that I will have lots of posts next week. They might show up this week if my house gets cleaned, laundry put away, papers graded and basement finished. I wouldn't place any bets that blogs will make the list.

I will leave you with a couple quotes.

First from Corey at school - I have been using my laptop for several days with a project that we have been doing. They have been quite impressed by my ability to type in formulas and make numbers magically appear. They asked where I had learned it. I told them in my 8th grade computer tech class. More awes from the crowd and then I said something about learning to use Bank Street Rider in 3rd grade. Corey exclaimed from behind me They had computers when you were in 3rd grade???? Thanks Corey - do you really think I am as old as dinosaurs?

Drew tonight during bedtime -
Mom: Drew, do you know who loves you?
Drew: Grandpa, Blake, Oliver, Banjo (yes that is the real name)...Daddy, Ally,.... and Jesus.
Mom: Who loves you the most?
Drew: Jesus, do you know why mom? (a little curious from me) Because he is the God of Lords.
He is my sweetheart!!!!

This is the longest quote in Jason's book from Ally on Monday morning when talking about the previous night's tornados (or tomatoes - as Drew calls it)
"When I'm married to Trippy and our house blows down, we'll probably stay with Trippy's parents, or my cousins, or with you guys. Actually we'll probably stay with you guys because you make good pancakes. And we'll probably stay with you while Trippy builds us a new house. I'll probably tell Trippy to build our new house out of bricks so it will be stong."

The conversation continues as Jason prods more info out of her.
"It will be two colors. I will have Trippy make it pink because that is my favorite color and he can pick his favorite color. It will be those colors because of our love."

Huh???? Where does she get this stuff?

Monday, May 12, 2008

Go Grizzlies!

Here is Ally in her uniform. She has had two games, but was sick for the second one. We had the throw-up/butt bug go through our house. It ended with Ally getting strep also. Strep was never a huge deal to me before, but now we have had it several times in our house. From experience I don't wish it on anyone!

Games are fairly uneventful. Each kid gets three pitches and if they don't hit it the tee comes out. Everyone bats and takes one base. We play two very long innings! None of our team draws in the dirt or picks the flowers, but they also don't really move towards the ball until someone points out that the ball is next to them. It is fun and Ally loves it. Drew begs to play - next year...

4 Generations

Ah this is back from Rachel's wedding when Grandpa Klaassen was here, but it is still worth posting. I thought it was a fairly good picture considering we had to try and get my dad to hold still. His phone did go off - and he answered it.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Family Picture

I know that I am a mad woman on blogging tonight, but wait til our fun stories of Memphis. Hopefully I can get back on tomorrow night and post them, but this is back to our Omaha trip!

Ally took her camera and all weekend she kept asking - when do I get to take the family picture. Everyone is dreading this and can't imagine what we will have to do. I wish that her camera took a little better pictures, but she doesn't hold still very well.

I just downloaded another 200 pictures - that make over 400 since she got it on her birthday - watch out Grandma Janelle - you have competetion!

Drinking Man

This is Henry Obrien. He is only 6 months and has good taste! His momma wasn't willing though to let me open the bottle for him to take a swig so close to bedtime!


Many of you don't know the big changes in the Willis family. Jason quit his job in February due to great unhappiness. It wasn't the company that we thought we would be working for when we moved to Iowa. He has a great passion for hospital construction and has been on the job hunt very dilligently. Since then when not networking or keeping our family inline he worked on the basement.

Right before he started his new job, he had the opportunity to remodel/add to this awesome deck. Many of you know the Lapoints. This is Allie's parents house. It was a big project that too some long hours and a good sunburn to finish, but in the end it is absolutely beautiful. I can imagine the fun that they are going to have with their families on it. Nick graciously helped Jason on the last day finishing some last touches!

Back to Jason's new job. He works for the University of Iowa. Yes he is a Hawkeye and will say it with a cough on the end. He officially works for the U of I hospitals. He flipped sides of construction. He now manages projects from the owners point of view. It is fairly humorous when he comes home and tells me about working on the jobs that he worked for while at Miron. Jason is a man of little emotion/excitement but I think that he really enjoys the job. Here he is supporting his new wardrobe. He is now a tie man which meant that we had to go shopping. So if you would like to donate to the "Dress Jason Fund" we are taking donations and ideas!

He now has to ride a bus to work since their is only EXPENSIVE parking at the hospital!

Career Day

Schools are required to connect school to work. Makes sense doesn't it, but it is sometimes harder than it looks. This year our school connected with a local community college and set up some job follows. We took 106 eighth graders to different locations to see what they did and the education that they needed to do their jobs.

One bus went to Cedar Rapids to visit the culinary school at Kirkwood Community College and then to the Roughriders arena (hockey). Another bus went to Monsanto and then to the Iowa County Courthouse/Jail. My bus headed HyVee grocery store and then to either West Music or Centro. At first I think the kids thought this would be a stupid trip, but in the end they learned a lot! I am excited that next year we are going to expand this to 5-8. Kids need to be introduced to lots of ideas so that they can start to see not only what they might be interested in, but also how their school work is needed to meet the requirements of future jobs!

This is an oven baking probaby about 30 dozen cupcakes and several cakes for the bakery. It roates around.

Jill wants to eat this HUGE barrel of frosting. The girl we watched decorated a cake in less than 5 minutes. It was beautiful too!

This is inside Centro. They make plastic parts of John Deere Tractors, CAT equipment, Rug Doctor Machines, etc. This is very close to our house. We looked out their dock and could see our house.

We looked awesome walking around with our safety glasses and ear plugs. I would hate to wear them all the time though!

Thursday, May 1, 2008


Dear Mrs. Willis,

Congratulations! Based on the proposal submitted for the HP Technology for Teaching Grant earlier this year for the project titled Bringing Learning to Life: Using HP technology to promote active student learning and higher math achievement for Clear Creek-Amana (CCA) middle school students. HP is pleased to offer Clear Creek Amana Middle School the K-12 grant award! You were identified as the lead for the team of 5 teachers working on this grant, and we hope you will share this message with each of your team members.

I know that this doesn't mean much to many of you but I was absolutely THRILLED when I got this email last night. I was home by myself and was jumping frantically around. I have worked my tail off in Dec-Feb to finish this grant up with the help of a grant writer. It is a huge opportunity and will allow our kids some great opportunities!

Each of our math rooms gets:
HP Compaq Notebook/Tablet PC with Microsoft® Vista Business Tablet PC Edition with OneNote
• A digital projector
• An HP digital camera
• An HP Officejet printer, scanner, copier
• A $500 stipend
• Customized online professional development opportunities to support the use of technology in teaching and support from a mentor with experience integrating technology in the K–12 environment
• Free Software from Microsoft