Thursday, May 28, 2009


Rome is busy and bustling and for the first time it hasn't been excruciatingly hot! Little did we know the Champions Festival (or something like that) was going on last night. This would be the final soccer championship between Manchester United and Barcelona, in which the Spaniards won. We happend to be at the Spanish Steps last night after if was over and it was fun seeing all the crowds singing songs and what not. Our B&B here is really cute and a great host!

Today we saw the town gearing up for the finish of the Giro here in Rome in a few days (although we will be in Naples that day so we won't see them).

A few more photos of Rome:

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

7 Years

We spent our 7th wedding anniversary in Cinque Terre which was beautiful! We just got to Rome and are off to see some stuff... Here are a few pictures from around Italy!



My 8th Gelato in 4 days (I love it here!)-


Driving the Vespa-

Happy Anniversary-

Cinque Terre-

Saturday, May 23, 2009


We rented a Vespa yesterday and "drove" around the countryside...we did not make it back in time to see the Giro but saw the Barloworld team cars leaving the city as we were making our way back. Oh well. Either way, it was really beautiful to just drive out in the countryside and see all the vineyards and olive tree groves.

We arrived in Siena today and it is the color of Burnt Siena. We head for our vacation within a vacation tomorrow as we go to the Italina Riviera and the towns of Cinque Terre. Each place we have been seems to be great and different in its own unique way and we are really glad we came.

Here are some pictures of our last stops in Ireland and some from Italy:
The Burren:

Cliffs of Moher:

Right Before we got stuck on the beach:


The Basillica:

Thursday, May 21, 2009


We finally made it out of Ireland and the cold and the rain! The last few days of Ireland were fun and very picturesque! We decided to drive onto the beach one day (we saw other cars do it) and ended up getting stuck in the sand. Eric spent 30 min digging us out while I kept trying to drive us was quite an interesting experience. We drove a lot around the Burren and saw the Cliffs of Moher (in the rain), but our last day in Ireland we saw lots of sun and we got out and did a little hike!

Italy is HOT and crowded! Venice was way cool and we have walked around everywhere! Today we are in Florence and the Giro comes by tomorrow so that will be cool to see to! We saw Michelangeos David today which was way bigger than we had imagined, and so far our trip in the cities of Italy has been fun.

No pictures today! Maybe next time! Caio!

And for my family-
Happy 2nd Birthday Amelia! and Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad! Love you all!

Sunday, May 17, 2009


We spent the day driving...driving the Ring of Kerry, Driving the Dingle Pennisula. We have found some great B&B's to stay each night. I have tried the fresh fish and chips, but most often it doesn't have any that what fresh fish is suppose to taste like?

It is beautiful here, no doubt about it, but it has been rushed so far. A few more days here and there would make our trip a little more relaxing. But there is just only so many days! We are spending the night in Dingle, the Pennisula is one of the few places left thats first language is Irish (Galeik), so we thought it would be a nice stop. Another driving day tomorrow up through the Cliffs of Moher and The Burren and on to Galway. Before our last day back across the country to Dublin and on to Italy.

Oh, the sun made an appearence today in between the rain!

Here are a few pictures from our trip:

Pet Cemetary, Powerscourt:

Guiness Storehouse:

St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin

Trinity College, Dublin:

Driving on the Ring of Kerry:

Muckross House, Killarney:

Us at Rock of Cashel:

Celtic Cross at Glendalaugh:

Eric doing a great job driving on the right side of the car, left side of the road:

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Colder and Wetter and No Accidents

Yesterday we started off a little late, took too long at our first two stops and then rushed to try to make the third and missed it by 4 minutes!

We stopped at the Powerscourt gardens which were pretty cool then off to Glendalaugh Monastary which had we known we wouldn't make it in time to the Rock of Cashel we would have stayed longer. Very cool park with some neat trails to hike on.

So we ended up staying in Cashel to see the castle this morning, which was nice then another 2 hours to Killarney where we spent the afternoon in the cold, wind and rain. It rained pretty good today and the wind has been crazy. But it is super green here and really pretty.

Eric has only managed to make a few wrong type turns on the roads, but is doing really well for driving on the wrong side of everything. And Ireland is the land of roundabouts!

We are now in Kenmare and will drive the Ring of Kerry tomorrow...we have heard crazy driving on the side of the cliffs, so make for a fun day. Too bad the weather forecast is rain for the next few days! Sorry, still no pictures!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cold and Wet

Dublin is cold and drizzly...

We forgot the camera cord to post some pictures and don't know what it will be like as we venture out of the city tomorrow. I am scared about EZ's attempt to drive on the wrong side of the road, should be interesting.

It took a lot of adjusting once we got here yesterday morning. We both only managed about an hour of sleep on the flight over, they served dinner at 10:30pm and by 2:00am they were serving us breakfast.

The city is pretty neat and we have seen a lot of stuff, it is just cold and misty here. Maybe our adventures out of Dublin will be a little warmer and clearer! Tour the Guiness plant and I had a coke while ez had a beer. :) Too bad I am not a bigger beer fan!

Off to a pub with some live Irish music.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


So I have a soft heart for kitties...always have. A few months ago I rescued a cat that had been injured, they ended up amputating her leg but I have been told she is doing great now and acting just like any other cat.

Well, about 5 months ago we starting seeing a baby kitty in the dumpster across the street, it was really scared and me and my neighbors would put food out for it. Eventually she started coming to my door and eating and then she starting being really cute and friendly. So I have been working on trying to find her a home. The humane society was going to take her but then things got crazy and now they can't. Then a week or so ago, Eric and I decided we thought she might be preggers.

On top of that we leave for our trip on Tuesday so I was trying to find a place for her asap. I found a vet that would spay her and abort the kitties and this was all going to go down tomorrow.

Well Friday night pepe (that is what I call her) didn't show up to eat. What is going on??? She has come every night to our house for like 3 months now and I was thinking the worse. But no no, she showed up last night minus the belly. Now I had no clue she was that far along. She only weighed like 3 pounds to being with and is only about 8 months old. Well we followed her and found her babies, she has two.

We have them all harbored in our spare bathroom at the moment. :) Here are some pictures of cute pepe and then the so very tiny 2 day old kittens!

Here is pepe with the crazy eyes (before giving birth):

The brand new kittens:

Mama and the kitties:

Friday, May 08, 2009

Final Grades

One of my least favorite things about being a teaching is giving out grades. I do all sorts of crazy percentages and stuff to try and help out the students, and most of the time all is good. I have submitted grades for 3 of my 4 classes. The last class I am done with the grading but I haven't yet decided on the actual grades to give out.

The problem becomes, do I curve the final was hard, but not TOO hard. Especially since I allow students to have a 5x7 notecard with anything they want on it. Yet still the grades were really low, and then if I do curve the final, how much to curve it? I messed around with different curves, 3pts, versus 5pts, no pts. And what happened this semester is that almost 2/3 of my class went up a +/- letter grade with a curve. Most of the time my grades are pretty good, I don't have a lot of borderline people, this was one of the first semesters it was this bad.

I have problems with curving a exam, especially one that you get a "cheat sheet on". And in a class where I have give out an opportunity for some extra credit. I really think that the students at HPU don't care that much about their grades. They aren't studying enough, or not studying correctly. One of my students is transferring to Virgina Tech because he says their is no competition in the classroom, that other students just don't care that much. I really think that is true.

Well, at least I am DONE with exams, done with grading, just have to decide to be nice and bump grades up or be mean and leave them as is.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Sometimes I wonder

If my students ever pay attention to what I am saying...

If I say that I will replace your lowest test grade with the final exam grade if it is higher, then hand out a sheet with the same sentence on it, then still get an email from a student (who was in class) asking if I will replace the lowest test grade with the final, obviously they were not paying attention.

What does that say about the rest of the semester???

I decided to completely ignore the email...don't know if it was the best way to handle it, but it is too frustrating to handle incompetent students.

Monday, May 04, 2009

T Minus 8 days

One final down...three to go. A Friday evening spent at a Baccalaureate , Sat morning listening to Buzz Aldrin speak at Graduation.

Then a little r&r and what hopefully will be a great vacation!

Read 2 more books:

"Ask Again Later" by Jill Davis. An quick fast paced read about a woman and her life, dealing with different issues in her family. It was pretty good.

"The Reader" by Bernhard Schlink. Quick read as well and really interesting. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. While I didn't really like the characters in the novel, the story was good and the writing was good.