We Got the FUNK: January 2017

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Colorado Changes to Testing #SAT

If you have been around for a while, you know that I am a high school science teacher.  I have been teaching for 8 years and I mostly teach Biology, however, I have taught most every other science.  In the state of Colorado, you have to have a degree in your content and then your teaching certificate to teach.  In addition, science teachers are hired to just teach science, regardless of their degree, so in reality, even though my Bachelor's degree is in Biology, I can be assigned to teach whatever the need of my building is.



Colorado is my home and will probably always be.  I love what I do, but just like most educators, I know there is always more work to do and more changes coming down the pipeline.  One of the big changes in the state of Colorado is that we are shifting from the ACT to the SAT.  For the first time in 15 years, our state will administer the SAT instead of the ACT to our Junior classes.

Our building has been aware of the change since last year and although we know the tests are different, not much as far as our building focus and strategies have changed.  Our building tends to do very well on standardized tests regardless of the format, so we are just going to keep pushing our kids to do their very best and pushing ourselves to give them the very best as well.

However, with the shift from the ACT to the SAT there are some slight changes in our test preparation plans.  Our school does run after school test prep groups and will be focusing on the SAT this year for obvious reasons.  I know that many students cannot attend due to jobs, extracurriculars and family commitments.  Which is why I am writing this post today.

I was contacted by Testive to share with my Colorado (and Illinois) readers that they are ready to help you prep for the SAT and they are offering their SAT and ACT prep courses for free until February 28, 2017! This is a great resource for those parents and students hoping to earn great scores and get into the colleges of their choosing.

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I thought it would be great to share with you all that there is a resource out there that is free and will help with this shift.  Hope you found it useful!


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Monday, January 30, 2017

Beauty and The Beast Character Posters

Our house is ready for the biggest premier this year!  Disney's Beauty and The Beast hits theaters on March 17th and we are already giddy in anticipation for this release!  The character posters were just released are are seriously beautiful.  Take a peek below!

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Emma Watson already looks stunning and from what I have seen on the internet and from Disney, she is the perfect Belle!

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I love that they did a poster of Dan Stevens as both The Beast and the Prince.  Wonderful way to portray his "two-faces"

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Luke Evans looks exactly like Gaston from the animated feature.  Seriously, perfection!

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I am really excited to see Josh Gad in this part as Lefou.

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Kevin Kline did not immediately strike me as a perfect fit for Maurice, but the more that I look at his poster, the more I am convinced that he will be great!

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Our youngest daughter was supposed to be a boy (doctor initially told us that), his name would have been Ewan after the amazing Ewan McGregor.  Obviously I am eager to see him as Lumiere!

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Mrs. Potts is my absolute favorite character from the original Beauty and the Beast.  I was hoping that Angela Lansbury would reprise her role, however finding out that Emma Thompson was casted as Mrs. Potts was awesome!  We have enjoyed several of her movies and I am sure she will be awesome. 

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Ian McKellen.  Yes, Period.  He is amazing in anything, so casting him as Cogsworth was a genius idea.  

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I know very little about GuGu Mbatha Raw.  She looks stunning.

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I am a slight Broadway fanatic.  I watch anything having to do with Broadway and although I have never watched Audra McDonald on stage in person, I have seen her in so many different roles that she is one of my top favorites!  Cannot wait to see how she plays the Garderobe. 

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Stanley Tucci, is an amazing actor and brings so much to the screen.  I also love his poster and characters look! 

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This casting list and character posters are phenomenal!  If you are looking for a little more, take a peek at the trailer below.  March 17th is only about 6 weeks away!



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Friday, January 27, 2017

Advocating For Your Pet

In the last year, we have learned a lot about how important it is to advocate for your pet's health care. I figured it would be a good time to update everyone and discuss our next steps with our sweet Mia girl and her cancer.

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In April or May (I cannot remember) our Mia came running in from outside and slipped on our tile floor and took a bad fall.  She started limping about a week later but it appeared that her shoulder was just in pain.  We took her to the vet and they agreed. 

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At this point there was no noticeable changes to her bone structure or her behavior.  The limp was consistent through the summer.  Some weeks she hardly limped and others she was limping around just a bit.  We kenneled her often and followed our vets orders to limit her activity while everything healed...but then the bump showed up in September.

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Initially, the bump was pretty small and the limp was there all the time.  The vet did an X-ray and told us that she had Osteosarcoma and it was an aggressive metastasizing cancer which gave her very little time to live.  We were sent home on doggy hospice and told to prepare for her journey over the rainbow bridge.  

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So we did.  We talked with our kids, we spent hours coddling and loving on our girl as we watched her cancer growing and growing.  We were waiting for her health to decline to take her in and allow her a little control over when it was her time.  However, our sweet girl, continued to live a pretty normal and active life for the most part.  She still goes up and down the stairs, jumps on and off our tall bed, spends time with her family, fence fights with the neighbor dog and eats, drinks and potty's as usual.  

Warning: The Photo below is semi-graphic, and contains an open wound about the size of a dime. View at your discretion.

For four months we continued to care for our girl, to make sure she was happy and comfortable and to wait for that time when it was time.  This week, I took her into the vet after her tumor that had just been leaking lymphatic fluid with a bit of blood in it, opened up with a sore and was bleeding a lot.  Tumors are vascular in nature which means that they have a lot of blood vessels going to them and so this was to be expected.  What we gained from this vet visit was hope. 

Osteosarcoma in dogs experience, Chondrosarcoma in dogs experience, Pictures of Chondrosarcoma, Pictures of Osteosarcoma, Osteosarcoma and Chondrosarcoma treatment in dogs, Advocating for Pets

Walking into the vet, they were surprised to see our girl actually walking.  Her weight was still normal, her physical checked out well and her vitals were great.  We were just getting a nice bandage until it was time.  We were trying to push it another week into February because we just wanted to let her choose her time but knew that we could not fight an open wound that was prone to infection much longer.  The vet made mention that he did not expect her to be doing so well and that the cancer may not have metastasized as was expected.  He asked if we wanted to do a chest x-ray to see and so we elected for that and surprisingly our girls x-ray came out clean.  No cancer that they could see anywhere.  Hope was gained and a new plan was made.  We were now discussing amputation and a longer life with her.  Her diagnosis was now Chondrosarcoma which is slower growing and has a better survival rate. 

Osteosarcoma in dogs experience, Chondrosarcoma in dogs experience, Pictures of Chondrosarcoma, Pictures of Osteosarcoma, Osteosarcoma and Chondrosarcoma treatment in dogs, Advocating for Pets

At this moment, was when I realized that we should have advocated for our pet's health much earlier on.  We should have got a second opinion and ran a few more tests.  What if we would have decided to put our girl down in September and end her life before it was actually time.  Ugh, I could just kick myself for this.  I have a few pointers for people going through this. 

1. If you notice a limp, take your dog in immediately and have them do an X-Ray.  Had we known in May that this was cancer, the tumor would never have gotten this big and would not have opened. 

2. If you feel that something is off with the pet's diagnosis, demand more tests.  Our vet is good, but also budget friendly.  He told us that the chances of the cancer already being in her chest were 95% and that it would be a waste of $300 to do the X-ray on her chest since the paw X-rays confirmed the cancer.  We did get a second opinion and that vet said the same thing. 

3. Research!  I thought osteosarcoma was the only bone cancer in dogs...when chondrosarcoma was brought up, I was so mad that I did not have a clue what this was.  Our girl has every sign and symptom for this type of cancer and now it is clear as day that we were wrong and we have prolonged her pain for far too long. 

4. Pay attention to your pet.  I have been around pet's who are dying and when it is time, they have a way of just telling you.  Our girl has not done this.  She is still adamantly doing everything that she possibly can and that to me should have been a HUGE flag that the diagnosis was wrong. 

5. Ask Questions...even the hard ones. We have decided on amputation for her.  We had several questions, with the big one being "how much time will she have after this?"  We realize that the cancer may have spread microscopically and that the X-Ray cannot see that.  We know the risks and we are constantly discussing as many questions as we can come up with.  Our vet is open and honest and does a great job explaining.  We realize that our girl is middle aged and that we are not buying her a decade of time, but we also know that by removing this cancer she will be much more comfortable, even if the cancer has microscopically infiltrated other systems. 

We have a tentative surgery date scheduled for her and are eager for this.  We know that she will do just fine on 3 legs as she has pretty much been using just 3 legs for the last 4 months.  Her open wound has grown to the size of a 1/2 dollar and is pretty gross looking, but we are managing.  Our vet has been great and we will keep everyone updated on how she comes through.  

Thank you for your support, prayers and love.  We sure do appreciate it!

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

5 Reasons You MUST try the All Girls Shave Club!

Disclosure: I was provided with the sample highlighted below in exchange for my honest review. 

About a month ago, I was asked to try out All Girl Shave Club, and after my experience, I want to get everyone I know on board!  

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I love staying on budget, and being frugal, except when it comes to hygiene items.  For the last few years I have been purchasing razors that were the nicer ones from the stores.  The issues that I found were that they caused a lot of nicks and a subpar close shave.  In fact even if I had just shaved I still felt prickly.  Mind you, these were the nicer razor options and highly advertised. 

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I have really been working on myself both emotionally as well as how I look on the outside.  For me, I want to feel empowered, strong, beautiful and confident.  Making sure that my hygiene is very good, makes me feel great about myself.  However, sometimes, time is a constraint and shaving is not something that I can manage every single day.  I need a razor that offers a close shave so that I am not worried about my outward appearance and I can focus on my emotional needs. 

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Enter the All Girl Shave Club.  I was so eager to try my own subscription pack that when it got to my house, I told my husband that I was headed up to take a shower mid-afternoon!  I started trying out the 3-blade option and immediately could tell a difference.  I had to shave much slower to start because it was quite clear how close this shave was.  The handle of the razor fit in my hand so well and has a no slip grip.  It is easy to attach and detach the razor blades and the pivot on the blade heads really make shaving around these curves smooth!

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I used the Whipped Pink Champagne Shave Butter that came with the subscription pack and wow, how moisturizing and smooth did is make the shaving experience.  I have pretty sensitive skin and was nervous about having such a close shave and then getting razor burn, but surprisingly that was not even an issue and now I am a shave butter addict.  I am sure that this is why I did not have razor burn, even though the shave was so close.

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Once I got out of the shower, I put the whipped lotion on that also came in my subscription pack and my legs were amazingly smooth and this smelled amazing too!  I had not had this close of a shave in years and was eager to see how long the results lasted.  

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After 2 days, my legs were still very smooth with only a little tiny prickle.  This was totally out of the ordinary for me and was so surprising that I did not already need to shave again.  I actually went 4 days total without shaving which is completely out of the normal for me.  I had to try the 5-blade on day 4 and HOLY MOLY!  This is my blade.  I was sold at the 3-blade, but the 5 blade is perfect for me.  It glided on my skin and the shave butter effortlessly.  Shaving forever changed!

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Another item in my All Girl Shave Club subscription was the Eucalyptus Mint Bath and Body Oil.  This came in a convent roller bottle and it smells divine.  I roll some on after I shower, shave and lotion and it is exactly what I need to finish feeling refreshed and ready to start the day.  

If you are not totally convinced to SIGN UP NOW, here are 5 Reasons that you MUST try the All Girl Shave Club:

1. If you want to try the All Girl Shave Club before you commit to a subscription, they offer a Sample Package, that includes the razor handle, a pack of both the 3-blade and 5-blade options, shave butter and the canvas shave tote!

2. Subscribing is so easy!  Just start by selecting your package from their website and boom done!  There is a variety of packages to choose, ranging from razor only options to the additions of shaving and body products.

3. Subscriptions start at as little as $5.00 a month and go up to $16.00 a month depending on your package choice and shipping is always FREE!

4. There are NO commitments and NO hidden fees, you can simply pause or cancel with just the click of a button. 

5. All Girl Shave Club is offering my readers 10% off ANY subscription or product purchase from their site, with the code FUNKYES (ha!).

So go now!  Save some monies and stop wasting it on those store brand razors.  I can promise you will notice a difference and love this subscription!  Sign up now and Shave Like a Girl!

You can also check out All Girl Shave Club to learn more on their website, Facebook and Instagram.  They occasionally offer, savings and deals, so be sure to follow them!


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Monday, January 23, 2017

Something to Look Forward To!

The husband and I love to travel.  Growing up, my parents did a lot of road trips with my sister and I. We have seen a lot of the midwest of America and if there was a roadside historical shop, we have probably been there.  The husband on the other hand did very little traveling growing up.  When we were married, we had huge dreams to travel, but then life happened.


We have all been there and it is blatantly obvious that the husband and I have both neglected each others love languages.  This year we are focusing on us and our family.  We need to be us again and we need to be united.  Last week I saw the picture above on my Facebook feed.  Earlier that week, our little girl had been watching Disney Junior and saw a big white boat and princesses inviting her aboard.  She immediately ran upstairs and started packing a bag and it took everything I had to explain to her that we were not going on a boat.  Yet, this photo popped up.  


You guys, fate is calling us.  It might not be the most opportune time in our lives, but it is time.  We need to do this.  So the husband and I called up Disney Cruise lines and booked our cruise with our kids for October.  Everything is still very early, but we are excited.  We are thankful for our Disney Visa which gives us 6 months to pay the whole thing off with no interest, but at the same time, we are totally fine with carrying a balance, if this brings some excitement and balance to our family.

This will be our families first official vacation together, just us.  We have done a few little trips here and there, but this one is the first that will only be the husband, myself and both kids, away for an extended time.  This is a goal, something to look forward to and something to work towards. Motivation!  Hopefully we can pull it off and fate really is on our side!

So tell me, what should we know about cruising and Disney cruises, because we have no clue what to expect!

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

2017 Disney Updates!

I meant to post this last week, but as you all know our family has been dealing with a lot and so instead of blogging at nights, I often take time to spend with the family and then I am sleeping.  Then I plan to work during a plan period at work and of course, my students need me more and then I get distracted and its already 3 PM and life is hectic!  However, we are still excited about the upcoming Disney movies slated for release in 2017 and of course I wanted to share with you!

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

Of all the movies that I am excited about, Beauty and the Beast is absolutely at the top of my list.  I know everyone (particularly women my age) are eagerly awaiting its release on March 17th, 2017!

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Check out the official trailer below!  I cannot wait to see Emma Watson as Belle and my daughter is just as ready as I am!  We have already ordered her dress for the big day and are ready to see our favorite animated movie come to life!



Born in China is the new Disney Nature movie narrated by John Krasiniski featuring PANDAS!

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

The trailer for Born in China is below and is adorable!  This movie hits theaters on April 21st!



Highly anticipated is Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2!  I know my little boy is ready for this fast action movie!

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The music and the characters come to theaters May 5th, 2017.



I have been prepping my little boy and the husband for a fun day to see the next Pirates of the Caribbean movie!

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

Dead Men Tell No Tales is highly anticipated and with Johnny Depp returning to the iconic roll as Jack Sparrow.  This movie will be the start of our summer fun coming to theaters on May 26th!



Cars 3 is going to be another summer hit!  Coming to theaters June 16th, 2017 this is the third in the Cars blockbuster hits!

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

When I showed my kids the teaser trailer they about lost their minds.  So much anticipation and excitement for this movie!



Coming to theaters November 3rd, several of my co-workers are already gearing up to check out Chris Hemsworth reprise his role in THOR: RAGNAROK.

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

Another animated feature coming in November is Coco.  This is a story that is about musical dreams!  I am ready to hear more about this movie that I know my kids will be asking about.

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

Rounding out Disney's 2017 year, is a movie that I know people will be lining up for!  Star Wars Episode VIII!  Not much has been released about this, but you bet that when I get the details, I will share them with you!

Disney Updates, Star Wars Episode VII, Beauty and the Beast Trailer, Cars 3 Trailer, Pirates of the Caribbean Dead Men Tell no Tales, CoCo, Thor, Guardians of the Galaxy, Born in China

Which movie are you most excited to see this year? 

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

How I Failed my Marriage and How I am Fixing it.

In 2001, at the young age of 16, I walked into a bowling alley with a couple friends and walked out smitten with a man that I had just met.  In 2007, at a Red Lobster in Colorado, this man asked me to marry him.  In 2008, we were married in front of 400+ people in what is often called the BEST WEDDING EVER!


Fast forward to 2016.  We are 8 years into this marriage with two young kids and while that is all wonderful, he simultaneously was also trying to cope with both his parents passings along with the majority of the people he grew up surrounded by dying.  For the last 8 years of our marriage, death has been such a normality that I purchased clothes for our kids with the thought of them looking nice at funerals.


We grew apart.  While I was blinded by the parenting demands and needs that our kids had, he was trying to process the huge losses that he had endured with little sympathy from this exhausted new mom.  Instead of being a supportive and loving wife, I became bitter that this man was not as involved and helpful as I had expected him to be.  I felt let down.  I never even considered the fact that he was trying to cope with something that I don't quite understand.  My sister said it best, "you truly can't understand how they are feeling or mourning because you did not have the same relationship with that person that they did."


In 2015, his grandpa (his father figure), passed away.  My husband had just left him, after spending days at his bedside to come home and take a shower and kiss his kids and wife.  In that short 40 minutes that he was gone, grandpa left this Earth and took the final piece of my husbands childhood and security with him.  I knew it was going to be hard on him.  I knew how close they were, but I was dealing with graduate school, these precious little ones and everything else that comes with being a mom.  I gave him space, I tried to encourage him to see a counselor, what I didn't do, was give him my time.


He pulled farther away from our family.  Everyone that he had been close to and loved was dying rapidly and he couldn't bear to get close to us subconsciously.  Still he tried to maintain these relationships, he put up a front, he genuinely tried...until he could not anymore.  He started behaving and making decisions that are way out of character for him.


The man that I had met 15 years earlier was no longer the man that I knew.  I kept telling my mom that I felt like I didn't know him.  It was so confusing and yet I was still thinking about me.  I told him that he needed to get help or that we would no longer be a family.  So he did.  He went to a doctor and was put on medication.  We both thought this would be an easy fix...but it wasn't.  The meds made his erratic and impulsive decisions even worse and he slunk further into depression.


He broke.  I broke.  We broke.  Our family broke.  Mental illness is no freaking joke.  Death and the way that people process it is no joke and should never be judged.  Marriage is ridiculously hard and trying.  Last year everything I had thought our lives were, was challenged.  I had to re-examine where we stood as a family, how I stood as an individual, all while considering the fact that we took vows; "in sickness and in health, till death do us part."  Those vows rang in my head consistently.  So we pushed through, he pushed through, I made adjustments and we continued to try.  The entire time knowing that we loved each other, but that things were just not right.  We had neglected our marriage, our personal selves and everything that had made us so strong in the beginning.


I had to take a long hard look at myself last year.  This perfect family that we appear to be, was not perfect.  We were not healthy and everything was just wrong.  Through setbacks and triumphs we are still together.  We are communicating and we are still trying and that is the most important thing.  I don't know what the future holds, I hope that we are finally getting to a better point, but I also know how easily things could change.  It took me almost a year to write this post.  To put into words how my marriage was failing and how we were both responsible.  I neglected my husbands needs and he neglected ours.

On New Years Eve, we sat down and went through an article about the 25 needs of a good marriage and we discussed each and every one of them and how we were doing with them.  We identified areas that we definitely needed to focus on and as a team (finally a team!), we made goals.  The following day we shared our marriage resolutions and although it has only been 17 days.  I think both of us feel like we are on a good path.

We need positivity in our lives and we need all the love and support that can be sent our way.  I learned far more about mental illness and depression this past year than I ever thought possible and when they say that it is invisible, they don't just mean that outsiders can't see that you are sick, they also mean that you may not be able to tell that you are sick.  Looking back there were so many warning signs for both of us and we just ignored them.  Please do not ignore these.  Take care of your mental health and take care of your loved ones.

Each day is a step forward, even if we stumble...we stumble together and that is how we are going to fix this marriage.

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