Sunday, May 29, 2011


Saturday marked the first graduation at North Paulding ever. It was bittersweet. While I have only taught these kids for two years, the relationships formed are still special. High school is so different from middle in the sense that I see these kids all year long instead of 9 weeks at a time. Even the kids I only taught for a year still come back to my class and hang out-- I have seen them grow over the past two years and I am excited for them to go to college, or at least their next stage in life.

As a teacher, we were also required to attend graduation-- in our gowns and hoods. My hood had a brown lining with royal blue and a red stripe to denote my degree and college.

The ceremony was a nice one and the weather seemed to cooperate-- it was quite pleasant.

before we walked out to the field: me, Mrs. Ford, Mrs. Conely, Mrs. Wilson, Mrs. Long

Dr. Preston and Dr. Teirce leading the seniors down the hallway-- Dr. Preston broke out into a dance

Rachel and Annaleise

Me and Laurien

Katie and the Chorus waiting to sing the National Anthem

Walking in
Afterwards, me and Katie

Me and Kelly

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


This is just a spring update on Weston....

Weston is binky free. He no longer requires the use of a pacifier for naps, bedtime, or fussy time.

Weston can run.

He will point at airplanes in the sky and wave at passing cars on the street.

He will eat just about anything, but his favorites are steak and broccoli.

Weston LOVES the water-- bath, sprinkler, pool-- you name it, he loves it.

Weston can say Momma, Dadda, GO, "here you go," which also doubles as "dan doh"-- thank you.

Weston loves the ladies and can flirt like there's no tomorrow!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Bird feeders

When we lived in our apartment, we had two bird feeders outside on our deck. Ever since we moved into the house, we have wanted to put up feeders, but never got around to it. Recently, we bought two rather large feeders and filled one with a "songbird" mix and the other with "fruits and nuts" mix. We were worried we wouldn't get many birds or that it would take them a long time to figure it out, but we were wrong. We have seen so many different types of birds-- we even had some humming birds come up to the feeders-- therefore, we promptly went out and bought a humming bird feeder.

Weston loves looking at the birds-- almost as much as we do. It's so crazy how much we love our birds!

Sunday, May 15, 2011


My sister is now the mother of SEVEN amazing children. Baby Josephine joined the Cullom clan on May 2, 2011. I took a personal day to be at the hospital when she was born and I'm so glad I did. Tracy was taken back for a c-section and we waited. Everyone did very well and Josephine and Tracy are super healthy!

They are home now-- didn't even have to stay in the hospital any longer than normal. She looks like the perfect combination of Luke and Laine. I suppose Tracy and Lee really had a set of triplets, but Josephine was a few years late.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Garbage Trees and then Some

One of the covenants of our neighborhood HOA states that our garbage can should not be visible from the street. However, there is no place for us to keep our garbage can that is not in view of the street. If you remember, last year, Matt built a rather nice area for our garbage can just on the side of the house. This year, we started talking about how to conceal it from the street. It may take a few years to be in compliance, but we are trying....

We decided to create a flower bed around the garbage "pad" and plant some small trees so that as they grew, they would obstruct the view of the can from the street. We planned and priced everything before making the large purchase, and while I was away one Saturday afternoon at a friend's baby shower, Matt planted (and cleaned up) everything!

Before-- you can see in the grass where we painted the layout of the trees

All of the building/planting materials ready to go

The holes were dug as well as an outlying trench that bricks will be sunk into

two down, two to go

We even bought a rain barrel that attaches to the downspout to catch rain so that we can later use it to water the garbage trees in the hot Atlanta summer

Weston enjoyed playing in the dirt

... and enjoyed helping daddy pour sand over the brick edge

This is what I came home to!

Recently we have noticed Weston enjoying sitting in his pile of pillows on the floor. At one point we had to take his car seat out of the car to wash the padding and kept the shell of the seat in the den for him to play with. We watched as he would gather toys to take them back to his "seat" continually. Once we had to put the car seat back in the car, we thought it'd be nice if he had a chair of his own.
He will occasionally sit in it if his shows are on, but most of all, he enjoys climbing all over it!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Our prayer and God's mercy are like two buckets in a well; while the one ascends the other descends. - Mark Hopkins


I don't know if he always intended it to be a prayer or if he cried out for mercy as involuntarily as a sailor swears at the sea. No matter the situation: good, bad, frustrating, joyful, Granddad always asked for mercy. This past Tuesday, April 5th, he was granted mercy.

This past fall Matt, Weston and I went to visit him with my Aunt Susan and Nana. After helping him sit down, Susan said to him, "Look Dad, it's baby." His response, "Well I'll be damned." I chuckled a little, glad that Weston could brighten his day, even if just for a fleeting moment. That was the last time I saw my Granddad.

Though what I remember most about Granddad are the little things throughout my life... and the not so little things.

He served us, he scolded us, he taught us.

He mixed me my first drink, a "Granddad Special." It was special-- it had cherries in the bottom! As children, my cousins and I climbed the swiveling bar stools and sat on our knees to peer over the rounded bar in the basement-- Granddad on the other side tending it. He mixed a little bit of this with a little bit of that, added two cherries and served us a round of Granddad specials. They were gone in a matter of seconds; our arms stretched out for another, we usually got it.

The playhouse in the backyard had a low sloping roof. We were not allowed to climb the roof-- makes sense now, but back then Granddad got so mad when he caught us climbing the playhouse roof. So we made sure to stay just below the peak of the roof so not to be seen. I don't know why we climbed the roof. Maybe it was just to see if we could get away with it.

I know he just wanted the best for us-- when he wasn't mixing drinks or scolding us for doing something stupid, he was always trying to teach us something: silly German Songs about a musician, respecting our elders-- especially military service men and women, Civil War history during a road trip, and even how to ride a bike.

Nana was at the beauty shop getting her hair done, when Granddad took the training wheels off of my bike. By the time she got home, I was a two wheel rider! I don't remember him holding my seat or giving me any sort of pep talk, but I remember he was there. He knew I could do it (otherwise he wouldn't have taken off my training wheels), and maybe just knowing that he had faith in me gave me the courage to ride my bike sans training wheels.

They say it takes a village to raise a child. Even though we will miss him, he will always be with us because he helped mold us into the children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren we are today.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

For my Sister, from my Students

Today, while my students were working, I asked them a hypothetical question for them to mull over... then I came back and collected their answers. Here's the question....

<> If you were in bed for weeks-- and you have access to your computer and a TV-- what would you do?

1. Watch Twilight and Titanic
2. Read all of the Harry Potters... and Hunger Games
3. Paint a new picture every day
4. Play Words With Friends on your phone (just like scrabble)... Susan, Sarah, Martha, Sheila, Vicky, and I are all currently playing, so let us know when you sign up and we can play together. Just to warn you... Martha's kind of a beast.
5. Make friendship bracelets
6. Have the ultimate LOST marathon-- you're life will never be the same
7. Create and play your very own Sims game
8. Learn Arabic... or French
9. sleep
10. Play Tycoon games-- especially roller coaster tycoon, that way you can forget you are in bed
11. Netflix
12. Facebook
13. Get caught up on phone calls you have been putting off, though 5:00-6:00 is already taken
14. Do some random research, hot topics include, but are not limited to: underwater basket weaving, and camel spiders
15. angry birds
16. Update your iPod-- try listening to music from the year you were born
17. play Mad Glibs -- the Mad Libs equivalent
18. Diagnose Charlie Sheen
19. Set up a Panera card
20. Plan your wedding if you could do it all over again-- and had no budget
21. Complete a Rubik's Cube
22. Plan a party and include a compatible playlist
23. Learn all of the President's names in order
24. Teach yourself to French braid your own hair-- You Tube has TONS of tutorials
25. Play the state "game." Write down all of the states from memory until you don't miss any. Then learn all the capitals.
26. Watch Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
27. Learn Sign Language
28. Design shoes on
32. Make matching family t-shirts
33. Read the entire Bible
34. Write to Ellen Degeneres and try and get on her show
35. Take a picture every day you are in the hospital so that you can create a scrapbook (can be digital) for Joey, so she knows exactly what you are going through for her... plus the book that you're going to write needs some pictures.
36. paint your nails-- try colors you would normally never go for
37. Try your hand at Origami. I learned how to make a fish last week.... needless to say, I have a bajillion fish in my room now hanging from the ceiling. SO get good at one thing and see if the nurses will hang them from the ceiling.
38. Prank Calls are always fun...
39. Create a new "Where I'm From" Poem-- then post it on your blog.
40. Fish tail braids are VERY in right now-- teach yourself on You Tube
41. Spider Solitaire
42. Download every free App. on your iPhone
43. Legos! They're endless fun
44. Call every radio show and try to enter EVERY contest they run

okay, so today's list is a TAD more than 7. Now get on it!