Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I realized today that I've been rather silent here on the old blog.

I guess I've just not had a lot to say.

WHAT!?!? That isn't like me. I usually have more to say than I have time to write.

What can I say? I've been on vacation ... it's spring break. Perhaps my brain has taken a well-deserved vacation as well. Now, on to the random thoughts ...

RANDOM THOUGHT #1: Never, ever try to get to know someone via text messages. It doesn't work! You just end up offending the receiver of the text (which I did), and you just become annoyed yourself (which I am!).

RANDOM THOUGHT #2: My body hates me. That is the only way I can describe why I have a screaming pain in my foot today, after a perfectly wonderful 5K workout yesterday.

RANDOM THOUGHT #3: If someone has to wheel me through the race course, I am going to finish that $#*@*$&*@ Mini-Marathon.

RANDOM THOUGHT #4: Boys can be so clueless.

RANDOM THOUGHT #5: The vet said she wouldn't lick the nasty ointment off. Hmph! He doesn't know Emmy. She licks it off every, single chance she gets, bad taste and all!

Friday, March 27, 2009



The top view was taken in the Fall 2008. The bottom view was taken yesterday. Not only am I sportin' my new Kentucky tee, but I also think there is the slightest bit of difference in the hips and thighs ... would you agree!?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


I received birthday money from the parental units ... go out and buy yourself that pair of jeans you've been wanting, they said.

Today, I went to Macy's, hellbent on finding the perfect pair of cute jeans. They were having some awesome sales, and so I commenced to pawing through the jeans racks. I found a pair, but they were a size smaller than I have been wearing. Yet, it seemed like they *might* work ....

"What the heck," I said to myself. Just for kicks and giggles, I motored into the fitting room.

Stifling a scream doesn't even come close to what I had to do when I slipped those babies on easily, without effort, mind you, and twirled around in the dressing room. They fit like a glove, and they showed off every blessed curve I've got.

You couldn't slap the smile off my face.

I'm in love with my smaller size!!!!

Only 25 more pounds to go!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


A couple of years ago, a book hit the market ... you might remember it?


A few of my friends have read it, and, from what I've gathered from them, the gist of the books is that men are not as complicated as women. There's not a lot to read between the lines on with men. They are simplistic creatures.


Seems easy enough.

Why, then, is it so ding-dang hard to figure them out!?!?!?

I mean, if you, Man, are so straight-forward, then why, in the name of all that is good and right in this world, can't you just say what you mean?

I'm not your average girl. In fact, I'm pretty sure I'm dumber than your average girl -- this has nothing to do with my hair color, by the way. Therefore, I am unsure of what the randomness of your conversation really means. S.P.E.L.L. I.T. O.U.T. F.O.R. M.E.


Sunday, March 22, 2009


101.3 ... that was my fever yesterday. I've hovered around that all day today.

Finally, around 5 p.m., it broke, and I've begun to feel a bit better, which is good because I've got to work tomorrow and Tuesday ... oh goody!

More kid germs ... I can't seem to get away from them, and every year, it seems like it gets worse and worse ... what gives!?!?!

Friday, March 20, 2009


Today marks a week since Emmy came to live with me.
Here she is being ... well, Emmy!

Yes, this is a pile of towels that Emmy is sitting on, and, yes, we currently live in a pig sty.
Don't judge!

Showin' some love for the Kitty Cube.


It's Friday ... the last day before Spring Break. Yes, I have to work Monday and Tuesday for EXCEL, but still, for all intents and purposes, today, I am done for two and a half weeks! Done! Done! DONE!!!!

With the days leading up to the LAST DAY, it becomes a practice in survival of the fittest.

I've not been the fittest. I have, however, been the tired-est, the crabbiest, the orneriest, and the one with the least amount of patience.

It's a sheer miracle that I've made it to this point, really.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


I am no longer permitted to use the sliding window in the back of my truck.

This is the second time in a week and a half that I've left the dang thing open over night, and it has ended up raining -- subsequently raining into my truck.

It's as if the cosmos is trying to tell me something ...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


In the world of education, the closer you get to a school break, the more student behavior deteriorates, to the point that you are left wondering if someone has come and switched your children in the night ... like some weird body snatching incident or something. Fourth graders that would never, ever be mean or cruel, suddenly morph into some sort of mutant Disney "bad guy" and stomp their way around the classroom, hell bent on destruction.

It's at times like these that I really wonder why I'm not an alcoholic, because it's at times like these that I really, really, really want to drink ... lots and lots and lots of alcohol.

Today was just such a day, and I was blessed to have a student teacher observe the whole grand loveliness unfold. Isn't that special?

It started this morning, when a student leader decided that he was going to begin teasing another student and try to get the rest of his small reading group involved as well. Before it was all said and done, I was seriously crabby, and all my kids were gathered around me listening to yet another lecture on bullying and being good friends.

I falsely assumed that someone among us had taken the lecture to heart. Such is the way of assumptions, because at recess today, four of my boys ganged up on one of my other boys ... four of my good boys ... four of my student leader boys.

Torqued doesn't even come close to describing what I felt like when I heard the details.

I set them out in the hallway, told them they were going to figure out what it meant to be a friend, and devise a plan for being better friends to this boy. I told them I was setting the timer for 10 minutes, and if I came out and didn't like the plan, I would be calling parents because, and I quote, "I've had it with this silly crap!"

Then I shut my door and commenced to teaching 3 dimensional shapes.

My teammate, Stephanie, told me later that she walked by and asked them all why they were sitting in the hallway chatting.

"We're mastering the fine art of friendship," was their reply!

And so, they apparently had, because all five of them decided on these terms:

  1. They weren't going to play unfair teams any more.
  2. If they discovered that there are unfair teams, they would cease playing the game and find something to play that didn't require teams.
  3. They apologized to the boy that they ganged up on.
  4. They will cease using smack talk.
  5. They decided that since that one boy worked so hard at the game, and they chose to gang up on him, they would each pay him five Cadet Bucks.

Our own little fourth grade peace treaty! I am impressed ... until someone acts like a goober tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Emmy woke up at 4:45 a.m., and upon wake up, immediately assumed that it was TIME TO PLAY! She's as subtle as a tractor trailer in her approach to playing with the Alpha Cat in the family, that being me!

This morning, she cautiously tip-toed up to me and started purring. Her purr has one volume level, LOUD. Then, carefully and deliberately, she reached out ... shoved her paw in up my nose!


I have an announcement, ladies and gentlemen!

I am wearing flip flops!

Okay, yes, technically, I wore them last weekend when it was so warm and before the arctic air pushed through Kentucky ... AGAIN. And, okay, technically, it is, 36 degrees out right now, but the weatherman assures me it's going to be 66 or 70 today. I'm banking he actually knows what he's talking about today.

If not, I think I still will be able to keep all ten toes due to the fact that the dressy denim trousers I'm wearing today cover my toes while I'm standing.

Life is good!

Monday, March 16, 2009


My brain is a scary place ... it births crazy ideas and detailed stories. However, it's also the place where I second guess myself, questioning everything I do and say, and where I begin nagging myself when things don't move at the speed of light, which is how my brain feels like stuff should move ... at the speed of light. One could say, my brain is the seat of my impatience ... the county seat! The Capitol, even!

So, the other day, I made a very bold, and probably slightly misconstrued statement. I told someone I was patient and would wait. In my mind, I thought it would help the situation. I mean, this particular situation would benefit from some slow-moving, very intentional decision-making.

Only, now I'm being driven crazy by my mind!! Wondering what the next move will be ... what fine-tuning should I do ... what other sorts of things could I say to move the situation along ... could a push a bit more ... could I ... AHHHHHHHH!!!


If all good things are worth the wait, would someone please inform my brain!? It's not caring to listen to me anymore.

I need a diversion. That's what I need! I'm so ADD/ADHD on everything else. Certainly, I can be diverted from the issue at hand, right?


Sunday, March 15, 2009


Little Miss Independent ... Little Miss "I don't want to be held ... I want to play and play and play until I drop!"

Saturday, March 14, 2009


This is what happens when one plays hard in one's kitty cube.


I had a hard time getting a photo of her STILL. This is Emmy investigating her new surroundings. She's rarely still, I'm coming to realize!


Emmy came home last night, and it took her all of 20 minutes to settle in. Litter box training was not even an issue. I put her in the pan, and she commenced to playing in the litter! Go Kitty!

She spent the great majority of the evening investigating every last inch of the townhouse, playing with whatever she could find to play with. The most entertaining part of the evening for her was the discovery of A.) the BIG picture window in my living room, and B.) the fact that, when one looks out that BIG picture window, one can see parts of cars whizzing by on the highway just past the complex. Oh my goodness, what fun for a kitten! I became chopped liver when compared to watching the cars.

Emmy does step in her poop ... that's a disgusting habit that I hope, once she gets better with her fine and gross motor skills, will cease! Oh, and she got up at 4:21 this morning. Yeah, we had a little heart to heart, and she finally curled back up and actually slept next to me, rather than at my feet where she was for part of the evening.

She's a typical Maine Coon! She has a barely audible meow, but she trills like a trooper! And her purring ... that's very loud, and she loves to purr. She has a very typical Maine Coon plumed tail with those Maine Coon ear tufts. Her paws are HUGE, and just like all her ancestors before her, she's got large tufts of fur between each pad and toe. She is fascinated by EVERYTHING, and she investigates it all. She LOVES water. In her foster home, apparently, she was found in the dog's water bowl, her ENTIRE body in the bowl. Oh this is going to be fun, I can tell already!

Here are a few photos of what we do at 7:00 a.m. ... it doesn't look like I'm not getting much sleep in the immediate future ...

Friday, March 13, 2009


I got to work late ... 6:55 a.m., rather than my normal 6:20 or 6:30 a.m. For anyone that knows me well, I'm hitting that brick wall ... where my proverbial wheels spin, and I go no where. Those last few days of school, if I manage to get there before the kids, it's a sheer miracle!

We were under a winter weather advisory last night. Now, that usually translates into a dusting of snow. It didn't really matter to me, because I still just wanted to cry. I think it goes back to my days in the north when we'd be teased mercilessly for a day, with sun and warmth, only to be dashed against the rocky cliffs of despair when another winter storm from HELL would bare down upon us.

Think I'm being melodramatic? Just ask one of my northern family or friends! They'll confirm the lack of melodrama in that statement!

Either way, to run around in flip-flops in the sun and then to have to deal with the possibility of snow? I can hardly stand it.


Silver lining this whole thing, all I can say is TGIF! It's Friday ... I think I can manage it ... I think ....

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Names have been changed to protect the innocent.

"Miss Murray!! It's mating season!!!!" Les squeals loudly.

"What's mating season, Miss Murray?" Melinda asks, as she stands watching Les with a puzzled expression on her face.

"Good Lord in heaven," I think to myself. "What did I do as a child to deserve to explain this one?"

At this point, my mother is mentally ticking off a laundry list of ALL the things I did do to deserve to answer this question and much more!

"It's when a lot of animal babies are born and adult animals look for friends to hang out with for the rest of the summer."

"Yeah, and ...." Les interrupts. "It's also when ..."

"Hey Les! Look!" I point. "I think that's a bug. Go chase it!"

I'm just not equipped to discuss the birds and the bees with fourth graders. I barely understand them myself most days.


Spring Break is in 7 days ... not that anyone's counting ... oh who am I kidding?!?! I am soooooooo counting!

This is the longest stretch of school on record, and everyone is so ready for it to be over and to have a break. We're all tired, teachers and kids. We've worked our butts off, teachers and kids. We like each other, but right now, we're on each other's nerves, teacher and kids.

These last few days feel like months ... like some horrible extension of the longest quarter on record. I'm both physically and mentally exhausted. I can no longer do simple tasks without exerting super human strength to try to get it done.

I just need a break .... I just need a mental break ....

Wednesday, March 11, 2009



Nope ... I swear to you, it's true!


Today is Chicken Stiry Fry day in our school cafeteria. It really is pretty decent, with sweet and sour chicken stir-fry, an egg roll, steamed rice, and pineapples. We always get a fortune cookie, and this was my fortune today. I love it!!!

We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.


I woke up at 3:36 a.m. ... yes, that was a THREE, a THREE and a SIX, and yes, I said A.M., as in, before God wakes up!

Upon waking, I realized something. It was raining ... hard, and I'm pretty sure I left my back window in my truck open.

I'm frantically searching for a silver lining to today, because it's too freakin' early in the morning to be this annoyed.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


For lunch, I brought a frozen, personal pizza to school today.

Directions said to nuke it for 3 minutes. I should never trust directions.

I only have 12 minutes, give or take, to eat my lunch, AFTER I've taken my kids down to the cafeteria and run to the bathroom myself. Due to that fact, when I pulled the pizza out of the microwave, bubbling and sizzling, I just started eating it. I have no time to wait for it to cool down or to blow on it!

Should have waited ...

I have blisters all over the roof of my mouth, literally! I count three locations ... not to mention my tongue, that is so super sore right now, it's not even funny.

Yep, scarfing hot food isn't recommended.

Monday, March 09, 2009


I received these photos of the sweet little kitten I will be adopting. She's precious, isn't she?

She goes in to be spayed on Wednesday, and if all goes well, I will be able to take her home this coming weekend! I'm so excited. I still have final adoption papers to sign and must meet with the adoption counselor to get that all taken care of, but it looks like I will have a new addition soon to Casa El Murray!

So, a few more names have popped into my head recently, and I'm leaning towards one in particular. However, I'm keeping it under wraps until I see her in real life.

The short list?




I'm ornery today.

Can't put my finger on what, exactly, has made me ornery, but ornery I am!

Could be the time change. That always puts me off for a while, and then, just when I'm feeling back on top of it, someone goes and changes the time back on me!

Yeah, come to think of it. That might just be the reason for the aforementioned orneriness.

Saturday, March 07, 2009


Well, I was contacted by someone from a local animal shelter letting me know that they believe they have found a kitten for me. I'm waiting on photos of her, but, if all goes well, I could be announcing a new addition to my family by the end of next week ... not trying to get too excited yet, however.

The other day, someone asked me what I would name a new kitten.

I had a name picked out for a little kitten boy ... Brinkley.

However, I haven't really landed on a good girl's name.

Here's what I've been tossing about recently:



I've also been toying with the idea of naming her after a favorite book or movie character ... something like:

Juliet from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet
Daisy from The Great Gatsby
Fern from Charlotte's Web
Harley from Back Roads
Shelby from Steel Magnolias

I have a feeling my mother will hate them all ...

Any thoughts on the ideas I have so far?


I'm wearing flip-flops!!!

I'm wearing a pair of pants that are a size smaller than what I have been wearing!!!

I've got my windows open and am letting the very brisk breezes blow through my place!!!


Friday, March 06, 2009


Last night, we had parent teacher conferences. They were decent enough. I have fantastic parents and a great group of kids -- I'm really very lucky.

However, I always feel, at best, mediocre when I get done with conferences. For instance, last night, I was informed that I'm apparently boring two of my students to tears. In one case, the mom announced that she teaches her kid at home -- he's just more challenged at home. What this means is that anything I do in my classroom that would actually challenge and interest the child only continues to bore the crap out of this student.


Very disheartening.

The silver lining is that today is Friday, and it's 57 degrees. I'm living dangerously and wearing my cute Crocs without socks today ... and a short sleeve shirt ... WITHOUT a jacket! Yep, I'm out on the edge.

Thursday, March 05, 2009



There are some aerial reports on one of those videos. That LARGE building on the left of the bank? That's my school!


It all started about 1:00 p.m. yesterday afternoon ... the first ambulances and rescue trucks screamed out of the fire house across the street and headed downtown. As I took my kids out to recess, more and more ambulances, rescue trucks, and the like screamed past the playground, across The Singing Bridge, and headed toward town.

"Wow," I said to my teammate, Stephanie. "There's gotta be something big going on. They're coming from all over the place."

Little did we know, my colleagues on the river side of our building watched the whole thing unfold, and it was big!

Four kayakers took advantage of a *finally* sunny day yesterday, and spent the better part of the day on the Kentucky River. They stopped for a bite to each at lunchtime, at a local Barbecue joint, at the other end of our playground, and then they set off for more paddling.

At some point, one of the guys in the party had a problem, fell back from the group, and, it would seem, rolled his kayak. A driver going across the Singing Bridge, saw him struggling to right the boat, and then, when she looked again, the kayak was all by itself. She called 911.

Fast-forward to after school, when we all stood at various windows facing the river side of our building ... the gruesome task of dragging the river was underway. Sadly, as of sun fall, no body was recovered. As I write this, preparations are underway to resume searching in little under a half hour.

Folks, wear your life vests! This man wasn't, reports say.

In water temps this cold, you don't last long anyway, and without the aid of a vest, it makes your chances of survival that much less of a likelihood.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009


It is 9 degrees out this morning!

9 ... as in single digits.

Oh, lest you think I'm whining, the average temperature for this time of year in Kentucky is 52 degrees. Yes!

I am so @&*@^&!*&)( sick of being cold, it's past funny. I woke up this morning, when I finally did wake up, cuz Lord knows I didn't actually set my alarm last night ... but when I finally did wake up, I woke up with a head full of crap and a sore throat.

OH. MY. FREAKIN'. @#*(&$*(!&*(@&#*(!@&*(#&!(*@&)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I blame this completely on the freakish weather!

I'm so over it, and if someone doesn't fix it soon, I can not be held responsible for my actions.

Monday, March 02, 2009


After quick trip to the scales this morning, it was discovered that I've lost 2 more pounds, which means, I am now four pounds away from my first LARGE weight loss milestone!

Whoop! Whoop!

With this weight loss has come a somewhat problematic issue, that being a slight Plumber's Crack issue. You see, my waist is getting smaller, but my hips and thighs aren't following suit quite so quickly. In order to get pants that fit the hips/thighs zone, I must deal with saggy bottoms in the waist area.

So, good citizens of America, if, for some horribly embarrassing reason, I drop trou in front of you, I apologize, but I'm having a terrible time keeping the drawers up these days!

Sunday, March 01, 2009


My friends Kim and Erin and I all went to the McConnell Youth Literature Conference this past weekend. It was at the Griffin Gate Hotel and Conference Center, and, being that we were in Lexington, we couldn't help ourselves! When we saw all the Derby hats on display, we just HAD to stop into the little Derby Hat Boutique and check out the amazing millinery.

Here we are modeling our choices. Just so you know, Derby is taken very seriously down here! That hat on my head?

$425, thank you very much!


I just had a mini-meltdown. Tears ... Kleenexes ... the works ... a grade A, mini emotional meltdown.

Since Maddie the Cat passed away, I've known I've wanted to adopt another cat. Specifically, I've been looking for a Maine Coon kitten. There are tons and tons of animals out there, just begging for a new home. Trust me, every time I go to a shelter, I leave in tears. I wish I could take them all home.

But I'm a responsible pet owner. So, I know, right now, I should only have one cat.

I had a line on a cute little Maine Coon kitten. He sounded so sweet ... fell in love with him just based on his story. I got word today that I would not be able to adopt him unless I adopted his little buddy too. Also, if I even thought about declawing them, I would not be allowed to adopt them, because, in the foster parent's mind, I was mutilating them. Okay, I understand where they are coming from on the mutilation part, and honestly, I wouldn't have done it to Maddie had it not been for the fact that she actually put herself in danger on NUMEROUS occasions with her constant climbing. Plus, she was destroying everything in sight ... refused to use the scratching pole. But that was Maddie ... she was a piece of work, that cat!

However, the thing I had my mini emotional meltdown on was the fact that it was explained to me, in excruciating detail, how a kitten needs all sorts of love and devotion for proper development. It was explained to me in excruciating detail, that a kitten left alone will have emotional issues. I almost felt like I was 12 again. Like I didn't quite understand what it was to raise and care for a kitten.

I immediately started crying, because I know full well what it takes to love an animal. I spent 10 years loving the crap right out of Sadie the Dog, and every day, I miss her ... wish she was here next to me, patiently waiting for a scratch on those big, floppy ears. I spent nine years loving the crap out of Maddie the Cat, despite her ornery demeanor and her complete and total disregard for anything other than her self. Every night, when I crawl into bed, I crawl in missing that fuzzy cat ball that always curled up next to me, purring away.

This world STILL has something against single people. I don't get it. Because I'm not married and chucking out kids, I somehow don't have quite as loving a home to raise a kitten? Maybe it's just me, but that is how I felt today, and I couldn't help getting my feelings hurt. I just want a sweet kitten to love and raise. That's it. Nothing more ...

My past experiences with pet adoption have been wonderful, and yet, this time, my experience thus far, has been not at all pleasant and happy. It almost makes a girl want to give up.


Quotes from this weekend that had Erin and I in fits of giggles:

From our principal during our school wide meeting:
"Is it a horse? Is it a cow? Is it real? Can you milk it?"

From me, and Lord only knows in what context I was using this one!
"My thighs maybe be big, but I can crack a walnut with them!"