Sunday, October 31, 2010

Photo #304: A Puppy Party

Yesterday was a very busy day, starting with working at Huntington, walking, and shopping. I didn't worry about that when I had two dogs, because they kept each other company, but I do worry about it now, while Bailey adjusts to being an "only dog." So when I went over to Mom's house to give out candy, Bailey went with me. While Mom and I passed out candy, Bailey and Shelby played together.

They had a great time, but Shelby is younger and has more stamina than Bailey. She still wanted to play, but Bailey was ready for a nap.

It definately got their attention, however, when Mom decided to sample some of the candy.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Photo #303: Beggar's Night

Tonight was Beggar's Night in Des Moines. I'm not sure why we have Trick or Treating the night before Halloween, but we always do. The other thing that happens in Des Moines is the kids have to tell a joke to get their treat. I have not seen these traditions anyplace else that I have lived.

Sometimes I stay home and give out candy, but lots of years like this year, I go over to my Mom's house and help her hand out the treats. This year one of the kids from my class came by with his family. That photo didn't come out very well, though. I like this picture of the Pumpkin Head costume. I especially like the way you can see this boy's eyes through the mouth of the mask. With the exception of a very grouchy gorilla who came by, I'm sure the kids had lots of fun. We had beautiful weather.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Photo #302: Pumpkin Bowling

Today was our Fall Party. We had a game party. In between snacks, the kids played Twister, Payday, Skipbo, Connect 4, and Pumpkin Bowling. It was fun!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Photo #301: Sweet Bailey

Sweet little Bailey is needing lots of attention now that he is an only dog. We lost Zoe to cancer on Monday, and we both miss her very much. Bailey has had Zoe as his companion almost his entire life. He is not used to spending his days alone. Now when I come home, it is even more important that I cuddle and pet him, and he will fuss and whine at me if I don't.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Photo #300: A Triumph

I saw this cute little car at Gray's Lake. There seemed to be a car club meeting there, and all the cars were small cars like this great little Triumph and the white car behind it. I think this is a very fitting photo for today, because it is surely a triumph that I have hit Photo 300 out of 365. I never thought I would be able to keep up this project for this long. I have no doubt now, that I will make the entire 365 days.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Photo #299: The Silos

I have been trying to research and discover what these silos at Gray's Lake were used for. They don't seem to have any purpose, and so far I've had no luck. There are some similar silo type structures across the road at Water Works Park, but I still don't know how they are connected. At any rate, whenever I walk by these, I start wondering all over again.

So do you know what they are and what they're for?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Photo #298: Gourds

It's been a really horrible day. I had to put my sweet Zoe to sleep today. I will write about her tomorrow, but I'm not up to it just yet. Once again I snapped a shot at Hy-vee. I saw this box of colorful gourds when I was on my way out of the store.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Photo #297: Boxelder Bug Convention

I saw this interesting collection of Boxelder Bugs out at Gray's Lake. Maybe they're making plans for winter.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Photo #296: Strolling Along the Raccoon River

Rain was forecast for today, and it did rain during the night. Fortunately the weather cleared up and gave everyone an opportunity to enjoy another beautiful day. Jacci and I went walking at Gray's Lake. Even though it is late October, it was still warm enough to wear short sleeves. We took the walking trail around Gray's Lake. I snapped these photos along the Raccoon River. The colors are gorgeous!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Photo #295: Problem Solving Day

Friday is Problem Solving Day in our class. We do problem solving other days, but on Friday's we really get creative. The kids take over, and we take time to listen to all the ways the people in our class can solve problems. For this problem, we needed to measure, cut, and follow directions. I love it when I see the kids so engaged, and having fun learning.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Photo #294: An Unusual Sky

This is the way the sky looked last night when we came out of the restaurant. It was both colorful and interesting.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Photo #293: Scarecrow

I was hard up for a photo today. This scarecrow was on display at my local Hy-Vee. He's kind of cute.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Photo #292: The Diner

We have become regulars at the 5 and Diner. Sometimes we have dinner, but usually it's breakfast on Sunday mornings. I really like the fifties diner decor.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Photo #291: Farm Buildings

I am a city girl, born and raised, but I am always interested in the farms I pass, as I drive through the countryside. These silos and buildings are on the road on the way to my sister's house.

I love the combination of these well worn buildings sitting on top of the hill, surrounded by the fall colors.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Photo #290: Fall Glory

We have had a full week of the most gorgeous weather imaginable, and it looks like we're headed into another week, with just slightly lower temperatures. I just love the fall! This beautiful tree is in my sister's yard.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Photo #289: Eagle's Nest

This eagle and nest were created by someone for his Eagle Scout project. It is on display at the Eastside Library. I spent the afternoon there yesterday, looking for mountain books and creating my very first Prezi presentation.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Photo #287: The Footbridge

I wish I could be out here, today, walking on the footbridge at Gray's Lake. Instead, I'll be doing my 2nd day of parent/teacher conferences until 8:00 tonight. It is nice to get up a little later, though. I'm enjoying sipping tea, and smelling the apple crisp that is baking in the oven. Maybe I can be out on that footbridge again this weekend.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Photo #286: The Iowa State Capital

The designers of the Iowa State Capital building were brilliant. They built it at the top of a hill, where it can be seen from miles away. I love our capital building with its golden dome. It is beautiful. I took this photo after leaving the World Food Festival on Sunday.

I'm posting early today, because it is parent/teacher conferences. I will be meeting with parents tonight until 8:00, so I won't be home until late.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Photo #285: Duck's and Geese

Here are some more photos that I snapped at Gray's Lake. Some kids were tossing bread to the ducks and geese hanging around the dock. The ducks seemed happy about their snack, but the goose was a grouchy guy. He kept trying to bite the kid's feet in between bread crusts.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Photo #284: Doggie Diva

When I was at Gray's Lake this weekend, I saw lots of people in formal wear. It was homecoming for some of the high schools in the area. This was the fashionista that caught my attention though. I'm not sure how I feel about dressing dogs in clothes, but she is cute with her pink polka dot dress, and pink hair.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Photo #283: The World Food Festival

The World Food Festival was held in the East Village this weekend. We had beautiful weather with temperatures in the eighties. This is a lot better than last year when it snowed, and the year before when it was raining. Everything smelled delicious. I checked out all the venders, before I decided to sample the Pad Thai at Cafe Fuzion. It was tasty. Along with the food, there was some great music. It's kind of nice to see people dancing in the streets of Des Moines.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Photo #282: An Evening at Gray's Lake

It was a great night for walking at Gray's Lake. I really hadn't been there since the spring flooding, but it seemed like a good place to go on this summer-like fall day. Many other people had the same idea, because there were lots and lots of people there.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Photo #281: Halloween Lights

Today was a really crazy end to a very crazy week. Now that my school district is requiring six week assessments in both reading and math, we are doing lots and lots of testing. Next week is parent/teacher conferences, so I'm also preparing for that. To encourage and reinforce positive behavior, we held a movie night for all students who had no detentions or buddy rooms notes during the 6 week period. Turns out that was most of the school. So several teachers, including me, remained at school until 5:00, with the more than 300 kids who stayed to watch "Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs" The kids had a lot of fun, and we'll do it all again six weeks from now. Afterwards, I met a friend for dinner.

Since I didn't get home until almost 8:30, I needed to come up with a photo for today. Decorating homes for Halloween seems to be a growing trend. This house is located just 3 blocks from my home. I'm lucky to get my lights up at Christmas time, but these people must really get into Halloween.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Photo #280: Dry Pumpkins

I have already posted several photos of pumpkins, but I really like the way they look. I like the color, the shape, the texture. Some of my other pictures were taken in the rain, so the wet pumpkins look shiny. These were taken on a beautiful dry day.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Photo #279: Pansy

I was running into Staples to buy index cards, when I noticed these flowers next door in the Lowe's garden center. I think it's an odd time of year to be selling pansies, but they are beautiful. I love the colors, especially the shot of yellow at the center..

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Photo #278: Colorful Indian Corn

This colorful Indian corn was another thing I saw at the Iowa Orchards. I just love the variety of colors and textures of these beautiful ears of corn.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Photo #277: Pumpkin Ghosts

The Iowa Orchards don't just have apples. They have pumpkins, lots and lots of pumpkins. All you have to do is walk around and find the one you like, provided you're not afraid of ghosts.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Photo #276: Apples

It has been a beautiful weekend with crisp fall temperatures. It put me in the mood to visit an apple orchard and make some apple crisp. I took a short drive to the Iowa Orchards and picked up some apples. It was very crowded and smelled of cinnamon and fresh baked apple pie, which I did not sample. I'll be carrying apples in my lunch all week. I haven't made the apple crisp yet.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Photo #275: Saturday Night Pizza

I made homemade pizza for dinner tonight. I'm always looking for a good recipe for pizza dough. I think I found it with this recipe from Angela. It was posted on the Overland Park Baking Examiner blog back in January.

I, being a fairly lazy cook, didn't quite follow directions, however. I threw all the ingredients for the dough into my bread machine, and set it on the dough cycle. It came out good. Next time, I'm going to load it up with more sausage and pepperoni.

Homemade Pizza Dough
From Angela Pritchett

Pizza dough
• 1/4 oz. package yeast
• 1 tsp. sugar
• 1/2 cup warm water, 100 -110° degrees, + another 1/2 cup tap water ( you can slowly run the tap water into the container you used to proof the yeast so this additional water helps you get all the yeast into your dough)
• 2 1/2 – 3 cups all-purpose flour
• 1 tsp. salt
• 2 tblsps. olive oil
1. Stir the sugar and yeast into 1/2 cup warm water. Let the yeast mixture stand for 10 minutes to proof.
2. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour and the salt in a mixing bowl. Once the yeast has proofed add it to the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Add another cup of flour to the dough, alternating with the additional 1/2 cup water and the olive oil. The olive oil will help get any remaining flour mixed into your dough.
3. Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead while you add up to 1/2 cup flour to keep the dough from sticking.
4. Oil a large bowl and place the dough in the bowl, turning it over to oil it completely. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour or until doubled. Your dough is now ready to pat into a pizza pan, top with sauce, cheese and your favorite toppings, and bake.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Photo #274: A Bird's Abode

This birdhouse is another piece of yard art that I noticed on my neighborhood walk. It looks like it's vacant, if you know of any birds that need a home. It's a good picture for today, because I am so glad to be home for the weekend.