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Friday, January 26, 2007

Slow Week - Sort Of - Update

Not that I haven't been busy. There just hasn't been much going on around here.

Ray has managed to stay out of the hospital and Carol is settled in and content in Turlock. However, for some reason, she's supposed to see the doctor in Merced so that's one more thing I have to try to fix. I could make the drive back and forth but that trip would be hard on her.

The net went down again this morning but it's back now. Others are having the same problem with the off again-on again so I don't think it's anything here. Probably just something with their satellite or whatever makes all this work.

Tim called the other night to tell me my blog looked very lonely. I said "so write something". He hasn't so far but he's been checking out some of my blog reading recommendations. We had lunch together yesterday.

I've made it through an entire week without an appliance breakdown, not counting the net but I never did find my camera. If I ever replace it, I'll lock it in a drawer.

Anything else? Oh yes, Rebecca was suspended for one day on her second afternoon bus. Changing seats, talking too loud, "inappropriate" language (you can probably guess what word she chose to use), and putting her arm out the window and flipping someone off. Everytime I hear a teacher (or a bus driver) start off with "Rebecca is a great kid", I wait for the "but".

There's always a "but".

She's grounded until the weekend and I haven't decided about that yet. The driver says it's a bad mix of kids on his bus and Rebecca has picked up some of the behavior from them. Probably but she doesn't have to jump off a bridge just because everyone else does. On the other hand, neither of the other two drivers have complained about her. So part of it may be an unusually strict driver so far as the talking is concerned. And part may be that the afternoon trip involves two buses and by bus #2, she's tired and antsy. On suspension day, I drove them in the morning - they walked home in the afternoon and did fine. They had a phone with them just in case.

Anyhow, maybe she learned something. According to her, Rochelle isn't the innocent she appears to be - she just doesn't get caught. Sounds right to me so Rochelle and I had a chat too.

Other than that, the week has gone fairly well. I took Elcie to an open house at the high school she will probably be attending. It wasn't her first choice but it's a much newer school, just as close if not a little closer, and once she looked around and found a few friends from elementary school and the church, she was much happier with it. Both high schools have problems with gangs but these days it's hard to find one that doesn't. We have the two high schools and a "continuation" school so there's not a lot to choose from. I don't worry about Elcie and gangs (except for her being in the wrong place at the wrong time) but it's something I watch carefully with the other two. So far, so good.

Update. Some of you have asked about "continuation" school. It's called different things in different places. It's a school for kids who have been in and out of juvenile detention or expelled from the other schools and either aren't old enough to drop out or have been sent there by the courts.

I know they must have some success stories but unfortunately by the time most kids get there the successes are far outnumbered by the failures. If we can save even one kid out of ten or even one out of 100, it's worth doing. Kids are not supposed to be thrown away and so many are.

We have a high poverty rate, a volatile racial mix, and far too many gangs (formed strictly along racial lines), drugs, and crime. The schools try hard and so does law enforcement but it can still be dangerous to anyone caught in the crossfire. Almost all of it stems directly from poverty and continues generation to generation.

Of course this isn't unique to Merced but I was surprised to see so much of it in this relatively small city.

Golden Valley High was built since we've lived here - maybe 10 years ago. It has won awards for music and art which is encouraging since so much of that has been dropped from the schools in this country. Elcie was fascinated by all the choices she could make by the end of her freshman year. She thrived in middle school and I hope with some help she'll keep on keeping on.

The rest of the week was the usual. I managed to have coffee with my friend David. His trip is getting closer and closer and he'll be gone for a year. I still plan to write a post about it - maybe next week. He's leaving on the 15th of next month; first for a jaunt through the Pacific Northwest, then across Canada and back down our east coast, across the southern part of the USA, and then back here.

He's made a couple of trial runs. You can read about them here. The blog has links to his forum, podcast, photos, etc.

Sorry I haven't posted more or read more of your blogs. I'll try to do better if the net will cooperate. Meantime, thanks to all for the comments and I apologize for not getting back to everyone.

Take care everyone and have a great weekend.


lushgurl said...

Kids and their choice of 'language' huh!
Gotta love anything from a teacher/bus driver/other grown up that starts with Devilteen is a great kid...LOL.
My two cents is that you are doing a GREAT job Muchos Kudos to you!

thordora said...

She sounds a lot like I was. Honestly, some drivers are nazis, and other don't hear anything. Just depends really.

Can't imagine dealing with gangs in high school. Ich.

Yondalla said...

Take care of yourself Ann...always thinking about you even if I don't stay in touch.

Alissa said...

What's a "continuation school"?

Sounds like teenagers are a lot of, um, fun. I don't look forward to having to deal with all of that. Little kids are hard enough!

Glad Ray and Carol are still doing well. Hang in there, update when you can. We always like hearing from you but understand when we don't.

Carin said...

Woohoo, a week without any appliances breaking! Awesomeness! Hope things stay on an even keal.

Jobthingy said...

goodness. i would be ont he phone complaining to the internet company.

glad your week is going well.

im glad elcie seemed happy about the hs choice. i hope she does well there. i cant even imagine high school for my little one. and scarier is that it will be that time for us sooner then later.

hope you end up finding your camera.

your frined that is going to travel thru canada, tell him if hell be in the ottawa area anytime soon to pack a parka or 2. ;)

Dem Soldier said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dem Soldier said...

Hello Ann, I too haven't been around, good to hear from you.

I tutor 4-6 graders twice a week, and I'm aware to their choice of language, sometimes I wonder this if this only be blamed on their parents or societal problem!

Stay strong.

Caloden said...

Choosing a high school is so difficult, we are going through the same thing here. Where to go, what fits the best, which one has the most to offer. Hang in there.

Susie said...

Hi Ann,
Good to hear all is well with you. I think we all understand why posting is sometime a bit problematic for you.
Just write when you can..

Diane J. said...

Hi, Ann, glad to hear nothing else electrical has blown up or bit the dust. I was beginning to wonder there for a while just where it was going to stop. :-)

I know what you mean about posting. Mine seems to come by feast or famine. Several posts in a row, then a dry spell.

Hope your weekend is wonderful! :-)

Kristen said...

Uh,I'd like to stay in denial land and not have to think about gang problems at school. Please?

Puss-in-Boots said...

Hi Ann

Nice to see you back and glad to hear things are smooth sailing at the moment for Ray and Carol.

Sometimes I think the bus drivers can be too strict and others just don't care. For all that, I think kids pick up language and stuff real quick. It sticks like velcro with some kids. I have a couple of grandchildren who went through that but they're good kids.

What's a continuation school? Where my grandkids go to school, it's not gangs that are the problem, but drugs. There are the "drug kids" and everyone knows who they but they just keep out of their way and leave them alone. That's according to my middle granddaughter who is in her second-to-last year of high school. Her younger sister starts high school on Monday, so she'll be keeping an eye on her.

Have a good weekend.

Neets said...

Hi Ann!
the first month of the new year is commin to an end.
I have been so busy with work... weird but i managed to work for 39 days leaving the 31st of dec including weekends. would work from 10 to 10.
So I have been away from life for toooo long.

Looks like kids around the world love to learn 'special words', and bad language is something they learn quicker than anything else. No thing else can be done apart from constantly reminding them to not use it. Wen my brother was a kid, he would learn these 'words' from school and he would end up using them when he would get angry- then he had had it from my mom.
Nice to hear that Elcie is settling in her new HS. Does she enjoy any form of art? Does she read books? I believe this with all my heart- that art has the power to heal and direct life towards a positive direction. Esp reading. Does she have any hobbies? Perhaps photography? And that reminds me... i hope you find your camera. And i hope i get mine fixed soon.
Take care. :)

Merle said...

Hi Ann ~~ Great to see you back again and I am so sorry you have had all the trouble with the Internet. How is the new Fridge going? Hope it is beaut.
Sorry Rebecca has run foul of the bus driver and maybe it was just one incident. Glad Elcie likes her new High school and I hope she does really well.'How are her feet? I hope you can get Carol's appointment changed to somewhere closer. Glad Ray is doing well
Take care dear Ann, Love, Merle.

Autumn said...

Glad your doing ok, Sounds like you have had a busy week. I saw where you stopped in to my blog. Thanks for the visit. I had to delete that post due to problems with my side bar, so I lost your comment, but glad to know you visited..Take care

Anvilcloud said...

The school situation doesn't sound too wonderful; hopefully the kids can find comfortable niches.

PEA said...

Glad to see you posting, Ann, was starting to worry if something had happened! Hopefully your internet woes will soon be straightened out. It's pretty sad when we have to worry of our kids at school because of the gangs, etc. but that's our world today. Take care! Hugs xox

Gina said...

I know you have been concerned with Rebecca and her tendency to "follow" and I am sorry she chose to do that on the bus. But it's hard being a kid these days, ya know? It seems much harder than when I was growing up.

Glad Ray is doing better

Owens Family Adventures said...

I'm sending some prayers and good thoughts your way that the DH will stay healthy and all will work for the kiddos!!! I'm thinking there is probably a special place in Heaven for Gramma's like you!! Maybe with a massage therapist on call 24-7!! heehee


Peter said...

Hi Ann, seems your life is as busy as ever sometimes it's great to just sit back and do nothing, but you don't get much of a chance at that.

Hope said...

Thanks for the visit. I've actually visited a couple of times, also from oshees blog, but haven't left a comment.
Sounds like you have your hands full and that your girls have met their match in you.
Scary stuff out there these days.

JBlue said...

You don't have to worry about getting back to me. I just wanted to wish Elcie well in her new school and express some shock at Rebecca (such a lovely little girl, too). Our district still has art and music, and I'm glad because I think it's important, too.

Janice said...

Hi Ann,

Some times kids act out when there is tension in the home, and the illness of Ray and of course Carol I think qualitfy. I know that is not an answer but I hope it helps.

Here in Madera that is a smaller town than your's we too have gangs, and I know just when they got started too--in 1978-79 school year and the gang was call the F14's. And the came from L.A.,there parents brought them here to get them out of the gangs, unfortunately they brought the gang with them it was their children.

Sad sad.


Rosa said...

Crazy internet, huh! It drives me crazy!!

Alice said...

It's possible that as well as picking up bad habits, Rebecca could also be acting out due to the situation regarding Carol. Of course that doesn't make it right, it should still be dealt with as you are dealing with it, and I could (childless that I am) be wrong but while I was reading the thought struck me, so I thought I'd post it.

The internet itself has been fine with me, but Blogger has been seriously kicking up a stink the past few days every time I've tried to access anyone's site. So now I'm even more behind with my reading than I was before. But I'll keep on plugging away and evetually I'll get through it all.

Glad Carol and Ray are doing well.


Expat Traveler said...

hope the internet stuff gets fixed! And I hope the kid probs get tbetter...

Dee said...

W all have those times when things or slow and we have nothing to talk about in a blog or are just too busy to get to the blog each day. I hope the problems with the kids get straightend out and it is only phase they are going thru. Take care.

Badoozie said...

well, you're not lacking for comments here, that's for sure, peeps are watching for ya

Cecil said...

Granny..just wanted to say thanks for the welcome.. I appreciate it..hope your computer stays you in blogworld

mreddie said...

It is a wonder to me that you have time to blog at all with the busy lifestyle you have going. It is such a concern about the girls in school because because whether they get involved in anything, getting caught in the middle is always a danger. Yah for your applicances holding out! ec

PI said...

I think it is shame that children don't seem to walk to and from school. They need the exercise and it helps to tranquilise their surplus energy. I strongly believe in the therapy of walking for everyone. I know I know - security etc but it should be possible in some circumstances.

Meow said...

Hey Ann, hope you are having a great week.
Take care, Meow

peppylady said...

Talking about appliances I have an old Montgomery Ward dryer from the 60's that I inherited from my mom and it still runs with squeezing sounds. I know it a large energy consumption appliances.
But it held up well.

We have a continuation school here. Both of my boys goes to the regular public school here.
Their so many reason why children goes to continuation school here.
In all honesty I rather have my boys at regular public school.