Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I took a bit of artistic license with this and won $100 to Amazon

I know the details are not exact, but I remembered what I could with being a selfish caught-up in my own world teenager most of this time.

A hero is someone who sacrifices what they want and need for the greater good. My father is a hero in this respect. Architecture was his first love, before he met my mom that is, and he studied long and hard to achieve his dream. He worked in San Francisco at a large firm for many years until four children blessed his life and the commute became too much for my mother. Looking for a position closer to home, he found instead a fantastic offer in the mid-west to design for a large fortune 500 company needing new facilities in several towns and cities. Moving his whole family across the country was a challenge, but once there the whole crew found a love for the area and the people. His job kept him busy, but home every evening to help with their growing family, now eight in size. After completing all the original building designs and a few others, the company decided to disband the architecture/drafting department and gave the entire area notice.

This was a blessing and a curse for my dad. Having seen the writing on the wall he had been putting out feelers looking for new opportunities, but my youngest sister had been very ill at the same time and in and out of the children’s hospital a few hours away. She was not improving and the hospital was at a lost for what to do next. My mother spent many weeks with her away from the family and it was a tough time on us all. The medical costs were large, but thank heaven my dad’s insurance covered it, or I think we would have been out on the street in no time.

The feelers paid off and my dad was interviewed and offered many positions around the country. One in particular he was very excited about, but we would need to move south and the family would be without insurance for the first few months of his employment. My sister did not improve, but a new doctor came to work at the hospital that was pioneering and new treatment for her condition. He told my parents it would take a few months to see improvement and many more visits and stays at the hospital for her.

My father had a problem, he needed medical insurance for my family but he needed a new job also. He swallowed his pride and went to HR at his current company. He sold himself as an office manager, that being the only position they was currently opened. He knew it was not what he wanted to do, but he needed the insurance and thought once she was better he could continue his job search. The company hired him as the office manager with a small cut in salary, but full continuation of benefits.

My sister was in and out of the hospital for the next few years, and my brother developed a brain tumor just as she recovered. My dad kept working as the office manager, but was able to chime in on building plans here and there with the outside firms the company contracted.

Following several surgeries my brother fully recovered, but my father continued in his current position. My family was ingrained in the community at this time and no one wanted to move away. He retired at 59 years old with 30 years’ service. He never enjoyed being the office manager, but he was missed as they had to hire 3 people to cover his position.

My father gave up his dream so my sister and brother would have the medical care they needed and our family could pay the bills. Having been retired for over 6 years now, he loves his free time and is in the process of designing a home for him and my mom. He is my hero!!!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Didn't Get the Job....Oh Well....

I got the call and they said thanks...but no thanks.  Well it was more like, "We had other more qualified applicants and thank you for your interest.  We thought your interview was strong, but the experience of the other candidates could not be over looked.  We look forward to seeing you back and will keep you in mind for Long-term sub offers in the future...please contact me if you need hours for your degree.  Thank you."

Oh well I guess it was good experience to interview since I haven't done that in over 18 years...my recent jobs have just landed in my laps so I guess I was due for the experience and the stress over it.  I was glad for the advice on interviews and how to prepare.  One more year of subbing and then ...we shall see.  My load this year is more then last year so I guess working full-time is not really an option if I want to do well...just sad I always saw this job as one of those dream jobs....but I find teaching that way also so here is to my last year of school!!!!   Cheers!!!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Job interview stress

I talked to Paige and Amanda about job interview skills and then tried to prepare for the questions(I didn't know the questions ahead of time...just had to guess.)  It was tough.  The four member panel had 4 pages of back to back questions which they asked and then wrote down my answers.  I feel I did OK, but who knows I guess it depends on the other applicants and their experience, I did have to say that I did not have any experience with some of the items they asked me.  I seemed to go blank at times and was glad for the answers I had prepared to fall back on.  I did ask two questions about the position at the end that I thought showed some thought,,,only because I had planned those two and others ahead of time...but they all but those two dropped out of my head.  I just really stressed my passion for sped and my desire to work in the field and how I had taken time to figure out what I wanted to do and the working with sped students was it.  I forgot the fact that I could walk to work and that was the best thing ever.  They said they hoped to let all the applicants know by the end of the week......well I would love the job, but I will be fine if I don't get it...one more year of subbing will give me more time to study and work on my remaining service hours.  Life was good two weeks ago before I knew about this job so it will be fine again if I don't get the job.  It would be great experience for me and also allow me to use my SW license.

Cross your fingers that what is meant to be will be....I can't see around my next turn, but Heavenly Father can so I prayed that the best thing for me and my family would happen it relation to this position and also that I would relax enough not to shake like a leaf the whole interview.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Cenneidigh Made a Gluten - Dairy free pumpkin pie for me - Yummy

Gluten Free Recipes Gluten Free Dairy Free Pumpkin Pie
For the pie she used coconut cream instead of evaporated milk.  The crust had a graham cracker crust feel to it.  YUMMY!!!!!!

Gluten Free Perfect Pie Crust Recipe


½ cup unsalted butter or solid, all vegetable non-dairy shortening
2 to 4 tablespoons cold water
*1¼ cups All Purpose Gluten Free Flour Blend plus more for rolling
1 teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
2 tablespoons sugar
* you can make your own homemade version of a flour blend by combining 3/4 cup super fine white rice flour with 1/4 cup potato starch (not potato flour), 1/4 cup sweet rice flour and 1/4 cup tapioca starch (use Asian tapioca to avoid an “off” taste to the tapioca) and 1 teaspoon xanthan gum.  Whisk until fully combined.  This will give you enough for the recipe plus rolling.


Cut butter into ½ inch pieces and place it the freezer for 15 – 30 minutes.
Add some ice cubes to the water and let it get ice cold while preparing the dry ingredients.
Combine the flour blend, salt and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse 5 -6 times to combine. Add the butter and pulse 6 -8 times or until the mixture resembles coarse meal with some pea size pieces of butter.
With processor running, add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture just barely starts to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough together and it holds then you have enough water, if not add more a little at a time. You do not want to add any more water than is absolutely necessary.
Remove the dough from the machine and form into a disk. Wrap the disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or for as long as 2 -3 days.  Since the dough is so crumbly and does not hold together at this point, I find it easier (and far less messy) to pour the mixture into a large food storage bag and form it into a disk using the bag to help. Then just close up the bag and put it in the fridge. Remove dough from fridge 5 minutes before rolling.
To roll the dough, lay a piece of waxed paper on a work surface and sprinkle with some flour blend. Lay the chilled disk on the floured paper, sprinkle with some more flour and lay on another piece of waxed paper. Roll the dough into a circle approximately 12 inches wide. Remove the top sheet of waxed paper and carefully transfer into a 9 inch pie plate and remove the waxed paper. Push the dough very gently down so it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. If the dough splits or breaks apart just push it back together. Trim the edge of the pie crust to about ½ – ¾ inch over hang. Tuck the overhang under and pinch the dough into a decorative finish.
To Pre-bake (or Blind Bake) a pie crust:
Sometimes a recipe will call for a pre-baked or blind baked pie crust, here’s how to do that.
Freeze the pie crust in the pie plate for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place a piece of waxed or parchment paper (or foil) in the bottom and up the sides of the pie crust. Fill with dried beans, rice or pie weights. (I prefer dried black beans as they help distribute the heat better and are much less expensive than pie weights. I use the same beans over and over.) Bake the crust for 20 minutes. Remove the weights and waxed paper, poke a few holes in the bottom of the crust using a fork and return to the oven for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
Let pie crust cool completely before filling.
A gluten free recipe that makes 1 – 9 inch pie crust.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Mystery Cave

We went off to Forestville State Park for the living history and when we got there we were a day early....we borrowed a GPS and did a bit of Geocaching and then drove over to Mystery Cave and took a tour.  It was 48 degrees and the tour was long over an hour.  We then drove to Lanesboro and had Ice Cream.  We are planning on a day trip once a week for the rest of the summer.  Off to the cities historical sites next week, Wabasha, Pipestone for a POW WOW at the end of July and many more places to see and do...maybe we will need to hit two a week instead of only one.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Work and Zeke

Zeke was asked to clean up the tables and put them away after the picnic.  The tables are old and very heavy.  He went outside and returned too soon for me so I asked if the jobs were done.  "Yes, I got some help."  Well OK why and who?  Zeke enlisted the neighbors older college boys to help by giving them some left over soda we had still on the porch from the picnic.  We had told the kids they could give it all away, Zeke thought getting someone else to work for him was a better plan for the pop cans.  Very Tom Sawyer of him.

Friday, July 12, 2013

4th of July Fun!

Zeke marched in the parade on the 4th here in Austin and then again in Blooming Prairie.  I held water and felt worthless most of the parade only having 2 kids wanting to get a drink.  The picnic was fun and then off to the concert and the fireworks.  We were home late and everyone was still asleep the next day after 8AM, except David who had to go to work.
Davids parents came for the holiday and appts at Mayo.  On Sunday I was asked for sharp scissors to cut something.  David's dad pointed to his collar and lifted it so I asked if I was to cut his tie...well without hearing aids in yet he nodded so I cut the tie off.....big smile and laugh since I guess I was suppose to cut the little loop on the collar and not the tie.   Oh well I did double check......