Friday, December 31, 2010

Snow Day

Today was our snow day in Colorado. It started snowing yesterday, and we stayed inside all day playing games. So today we braved the temperatures (9 degrees) and went out and explored Boulder. I loved this city and would definitely live here if we were moving to Colorado. We built the snowman right in Tammy and Joe's front yard. So fun when you can instantly head back in the house to get warm.

Thursday, December 30, 2010


We flew out to Colorado two days after Christmas to visit our friends Tammy and Joe. We took a day trip out from Denver to Fort Collins to visit friends from Cal Poly. We saw Debra's friend Julie and her two boys. We also visited Tim's friends Creighton and Kathrin. They have a newborn (only 1 week old) that we got to meet. Tim couldn't leave Fort Collins without visiting the New Belgium Brewery. Here are a few pictures from the Brewery.

Don't worry, I didn't consume any beer. But this is a good pic to show you the updated belly bump.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Being off on Christmas vacation has given me some time to start thinking about the nursury. As most of you know, I love decorating! So having a baby room to decorate only brings that much more joy. I have been scouring the internet for fun ideas. I finally came across some things that I really like. I really wanted to make my own crib bedding (let me rephrase that) I really wanted to have Tim's mom and sister make my crib bedding while I picked out cute fabric. Crib bedding can be so expensive! So my search led me to She has so many great fabrics for all kinds of fun projects. The best thing is that lots of local stores carry her fabrics. Now it is just a matter of narrowing down which fabrics I want to choose. I think I want it to be pretty eclectic without looking like a hodgepodge. We will see if that is possible. I am also attempting to go with the bird theme. Tim has hung a birdcage in the corner of the room with a large branch (found in the ditch behind our house) above the birdcage. Doesn't get much cheaper than that. I found the pattern for these little birds at I think I might actually attempt to make those to put on the branch. We will see how it all turns out.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

It's a GIRL!

Bring on the frilly dresses, adorable headbands, and pink. Love it!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Baby Bump's the first picture at exactly 4 months. Can you tell? I don't know.... Funny story from my fifth graders.... They were very excited when I told them that I was pregnant. There was the collective gasp, and then a rousing round of applause out of the blue. It was really cute. So the students have been going home and telling their parents that I am pregnant. Some of them apparently in creative ways. I got an email from a parent last week that made me laugh.

One of my students went home after school and his parents had just had the carpet cleaned and all the furniture was moved out of the house. So he was messing around in the freshly cleaned carpet drawing designs with his foot. He soon announced to his parents that he had a very special announcement to make, but that it was written in the carpet. Well the message read, "She's pregnant" There might have been a little confusion at home until he clarified that the "she" was indeed Mrs. Romano. Ha!

So same student two weeks later... I get a phone call in the morning when I am teaching math from the other 5th grade math teacher. He wanted to ask me if the two boys in my class with the same last name were actually twins. (yes, he had been teaching them for the last 4 months...another blog chapter could reveal totally funny stories about this other teacher) So I answered him on the phone, "yes, they're twins" and hung up. (a little annoyed that I was being interupted on my fabulous lesson of triple digit multiplication) So later the same day, this same "carpet writing" student approaches me looking only at my belly and says, " so you're having twins?" I was really confused thinking, wow, did I really look that big to the kids already? Obviously it took a few minutes to figure out that he had gathered that from my earlier phone conversation about the twins in my class. I quickly sent him out to lunch, reassuring him that I was not having twins!


We were generously given a stay at a beautiful cabin in Truckee (near Tahoe) over Thanksgiving from a student at my school last year. We had a great time for a weekend getaway with lots and lots of snow! I even attempted cross country skiing for the first time. Fun! Tim and I are cherishing these little getaways now before the baby comes.


About half of us gathered in this picture after eating turkey in Visalia.
My sister, her husband Rudy, and of course the baby. (Not too happy about the bright, outdoor sun here) So much for the perfect Christmas picture.)

Our nephew Rudy Jr. is getting so big. We had a great time with him being the center of attention during family time. In this picture he is getting his hair gelled up for his Christmas picture. So cute!

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Some of you know, but many of you probably don't know that almost exactly a year ago I had a pretty serious miscarriage after about 3 months. Our lives really seemed shattered after hearing the news. I had surgery to have the baby removed in December and then found out that it was called a molar pregnancy. I had never heard of the thing, but apparently it was pretty serious. I had some abnormal cells growing after the surgery and they could potentially become cancerous. So every two weeks I went in to get my blood checked to make sure my hormone levels were normalizing. The doctor told us that we could not get pregnant for a year in case the cancer showed up. Talk about having to seriously wait on the Lord and understand his timing and hand in everything that we just couldn't understand. Thankfully my hormone levels normalized about 7 months later (this July) and I was able to stop doing the bloodwork this September. Shortly after we were in the clear. I am now 15 weeks pregnant!!!! I am due on May 20th. Tim and I are so thankful for the Lord's hand in all of this and continue to pray for a healthy baby. We really learned a lot in this last year, whether we wanted to or not. This pregnancy is considered a high risk pregnancy, so of course I have my daily worries that I am trying to overcome. We were already able to see ultrasounds at 6 and 9 weeks, and heard the heartbeat last week. Hooray! Pregnancy really is a miracle to behold and we are learning that more each day.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

October in Review

Happy Halloween! Every year all the teachers at school dress up for the kids and parade around downtown. It is such an exciting day for the students, and completely exhausting for the rest of us. It's been a little tradition that Tim usually accompanies me for the parade in costume. (He loves to dress up, totally opposite of me)

Disneyland was another adventure in the month of October. It was a blast to be able to go with Tim's parents. We had free tickets from the Disney promotion that was going on last year. We volunteered with an organization for a day and then got free tickets. We had to use them by December, so we were running out of time. It was really fun that Disneyland was all decked out for Halloween.

We hit the jackpot again by winning another contest. Tim entered a radio contest on the internet for a big event happening on the Central Coast. Sunset magazine was coming to put on a weekend called, Savor the Central Coast. It was a pretty high dollar ticket to get into the event, so as much as I wanted to go, we wouldn't have had the opportunity. We were shocked when the radio station called us and told us that Tim had won the tickets. (Same radio station that we won the Vegas trip from, although we didn't mention that when they called) We had won the grand prize (weekend of activities worth $600) So it was quite a weekend. It started out with a winemaker's dinner on Saturday night at Novo in SLO. We had an amazing six course meal paired with wines from Clayhouse. Yummy! I'm sure everyone was wondering what we
were doing at the dinner. (Average age: 60 and rich!) Then on Sunday we went to the main event out at the Santa Margarita Ranch. Basically it was every restaurant and winery from the central coast offering their best! They also had the brand new volvos out on a test track to test drive. This was a highlight! We got to drive the volvos down as fast as we wanted through the coned obstacle course. On the way back the professional test drivers showed us how to really squeal the tires. Super fun. I felt like I was in one of those car commercials. We were also given seminar tickets in the historic barn where we learned how to blend our own wine and got to make our own blends. Pretty cool, but the talk was way over our heads. We had fun experimenting. Lastly, we were given tickets to attend the Chris Isaac/Amos Lee concert with more food and wine at the Avila Bay Club. Definitely a high roller weekend that I will probably not experience again.

Tim blending wine...

Driving the Volvo...

Winemaker's dinner...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Rudy Rickey Jr. Has Arrived

My sister had her little boy on Thursday, September 16th. He weighed 7lbs 12 oz. and was 18 inches long. We made it up to Watsonville Friday night to meet little Rudy. They are all still in the hospital recovering after a c section. Hopefully they will get to go home today. He's pretty cute. Nobody wanted to put him down, and he definitely wanted to be held the whole time. We miss the little guy already and will have to wait for another weekend to visit again.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Mr. & Mrs.

Here's some fun pics from Devon and Tim's wedding. They were married at the Dana Powers Barn. The bride as well as the surroundings were beautiful.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

2 1/2 Weeks Down

I havn't posted yet about my new class this year. I just havn't found the words to describe them I guess. Had I posted about them the first week of school negativity would have been all too prevalent. The negativity is fading slightly, but I havn't come to terms that the school year really could be like this all year long. Usually the kids are quite timid the first day of school. New teacher, new students, new grownup surroundings in a classroom where more will inevitably be required. Was I in for a surprise. I barely survived the first day. The 35 fresh faces in front of me carried on like it was a ten year reunion. I was simply invisible to them. I actually told my principal that I wouldn't be coming back the next day. (in a half joking, half serious attitude) Never in my seven years of teaching had I experienced a first day quite like this.

While getting dressed and ready for my second day of school I had made up my mind that I would take no prisoners. I had to be somewhat congenial the first day. Day two would be a different story. I was ready for battle and needed to instill the fear. I even remember asking Tim if I looked like I was ready to battle before walking out of the house. I completely changed my tactics walking into the classroom. We would have no more frilly first week of school activities. Today would be reading, writing, math, science, history, etc. One right after the other. Believe it or not... I made some headway.

The beginning of the school year is always so difficult. I think I seem to forget that the kids are really still fourth graders and that it takes weeks of training to get them to the point that I just completed with my last class two short months ago. Really, beginnings of any kind are difficult. Things just take time to establish and grow. I have already been praying a lot more in my classroom in those moments of frustration. Maybe I'm the one that will grow through these kids. (Although I really don't see that being the moral at this point)

So I leave you with a tidbit of conversation in my day as the negativity wears off a little more.

Mrs. Romano: Student X did you remember to bring me your library card today? (I've been asking for the last 2 weeks)

Student X : No my parents and I aren't really big fans of the library.

Mrs. Romano: Well every time you don't have your card, your grade is dropping. So I hope you become a fan real quick.

Student Y: (In tears) Student Z called me a brat!

Mrs. Romano: Is this true Student Z?

Student Z: Yes, but Student Y said I was acting like a brat.

Mrs. Romano: (to Student Y) You know calling someone a brat and telling someone they are acting like a brat are the same thing.

Student Y: Oh they are? I didn't know that.

Mrs. Romano: (in my head) Ya right!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

And the secret ingredient is... Chevre!

Debra and I have been watching Next Food Network Star for the past few weeks. I've discovered there are two types of people who watch food network, those who are inspired to cook and those who are inspired to eat. Of course most watchers are a blend of the two. I've discovered that while I'm primarily inspired to cook, Debra is more inspired to eat after watching the show. Interesting tidbit, now on with the story.

Those of you following the blog remember that recently we discovered a local organic goat cheese farm. We loved the cheese we tasted and bought some plain chevre and some flavored with herbs. The timing couldn't have been better since the episode of NFNS was an Iron Chef competition and now we had a truly exotic secret ingredient to play with.

We were adding chevre to everything, on top of crackers, burgers, salads, nearly every meal had the distinct flavor of goat cheese in one dish or another. We were gourmets in our own kitchen. But my coup d'etat, and the product of my own Iron Chef competition with myself, was dessert.

I mixed fresh Canadian blueberries from Trader Joes with local apples, sliced, peeled and sprinkled with cinnamon. I spread the fruit in a baking dish. Then I added finely chopped walnuts, vanilla, and brown sugar to my plain, fresh chevre in a mixing bowl. I topped the fruit with a layer of this mixture and baked it all together. The result... a rich, flavorful dessert that kept my taste buds intrigued from the first aroma to the last bite!

Bon appetit!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Exploring Our Greater Backyard

It is the last weekend before school begins so we headed out for an adventure Saturday. We had some wineries to explore and check off the list. We think that we hit two of the best. The atmosphere was spectacular at these wineries. About 20 minutes from home we decided to travel to the furthest two on our list. Justin and Carmody McKnight. We love that the furthest wineries in Paso are only 20 min. from our doorstep. The picture below is Carmody McKnight. It was actually rated "best picturesque" winery in Paso. We picniced here in front of the pond. Well worth the short drive.
We also came across this quaint farmstand in Templeton called Happy Acres. We fed the goats, tasted many excellent goat cheeses, and walked away with lots of zuccini, watermelon, and herb cheese. They are certified organic and they sell their goat cheese to many of the restaurants downtown.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Skinny Jeans Arrrrggg!

Well I decided it was time that I finally gave into the skinny jean craze and so I headed to our local Forever 21 to find the cheapest pair to try on. The only reason I want these jeans is so my tall boots will fit over my jeans without having to cram my jeans in. (No offense if you rock the skinny jeans) After picking out multiple styles while hoping not to run into any students in the same aisle I headed to the dressing room. Sidenote: if anyone has been in the monstrosity of a building that the San Luis Obispo Forever 21 is you know it can be an overwhelming place to say the least. My beef with the store comes with their dressing rooms. They must have at least 5 different fitting rooms all around their store in every department. After walking vigorously to the back of the store, keep in mind I'm trying to avoid any potential run ins with students, I realize that the particular dressing room is closed. I head in the direction of two others, upon being directed that they were open, to find they are closed. Now I have circled the store and have found someone to tell me that the plus sizes dressing room is open. Another side note: plus sizes in that store are a waist size of 30. I realized this when the largest size jeans came in a 29 in the regular section. What on earth! I quickly replied to the sales "teen" that the plus size dressing room is not open and she is mistaken. She then directs me to the castle. Ya, the what? Apparently the castle is an open dressing room and I just have to find it. Why is there a need to have 5 different dressing rooms that are always closed? Upon making it to "the castle" I find a huge line. The girl asks if I would like to go to another fitting room, apparently the plus sizes rooms are open. No thank you! I am staying put. And by the way, the plus sizes room is not open.

So the real fun begins as I cart my 8 pairs of skinny jeans in various colors into the dressing room to begin to try on. No joke, I cannot get the first pair over my ankles. Oh man. I'm quite sure I lost about 2 lbs just walking around to find the dressing room. I was bound and determined not to have to get my skinny jeans in the plus sizes. They call them skinny jeans for a reason, not plus jeans. So I attempt pair number two. Up to my calves! I am realizing that I am going to have to put a little more work into getting these on I'm afraid. With pair number three I am starting to breath harder and could quite possibly pull a muscle with the contortions I am attempting. So pair number three actually made it all the way on. I was mortified! I really should have brought a pair of boots in to try on with the jeans, because wearing them on their own is simply never going to happen. I quickly decide to take those off and put them in the maybe pile. Getting them off took some time. I don' t know what the deal is and why some people just look adorable in their skinny jeans. Maybe it is because they are 21 and not pushing 30. That probably should have been a huge sign that my days at Forever 21 should be over. I have a coworker (52 yrs. old) that has a few cute items from the store that she calls Forever 50. Apparently it was not my day, I didn't even attempt to try on the shirts I had picked out. I was too exhausted. Or maybe it was my day, because I actually ended up leaving the store with 2 pairs of these so called skinny jeans. What have I done...

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Weekend of Celebrations

We had such a blast at Christion and Megan's wedding this weekend. It was extra special for me because I went to high school with Christion and got to see lots of his family and many high school friends I havn't see in over 10 years. It was also a great mix of all of our SLO friends. You know its a good wedding when you look around and everyone is out of their seats and on the dance floor.

I also got to celebrate my good friend Devon. She is getting married in September so Iwas able to share in her joy as well.

The shower was at Devon's mom's house in Shell Beach. She is such an incredible hostess. Check out this fun idea... Vegetable cups made of pete moss filled with parchment paper, vegetables
and ranch dressing inside. Everywhere I looked I was inspired with decorating ideas.