Wednesday, February 25, 2009


First of all I must post this enjoyable picture:

This is a gag gift my sister sent to Travis. He loved it! I think he should wear it in his anatomy labs.

Travis is off from school this week, but not off from studying. As soon as he goes back he will begin 12 weeks of tests. His days are not completely filled with studying. We have been spending some time having fun. Our preacher and his wife gave us a giftcard to a restaurant for our anniversary. Last night we decided to take advantage of the gift and had a nice dinner at LoneStar Steakhouse. The restaurant is a Texas theme which was very enjoyable. It was a little weird to see all this Texas paraphernalia and then have a waitress with a thick Illinois accent.

I am having a wonderful time with my tutoring. The boys are so well-behaved and excited to learn. On Tuesday I was going to administer an assessment test to see how the tutoring had benefited the students. Before the test I wanted to review over some of the aspects they had learned. For most of the review I used items that were included in the tutoring binder. However, I felt that they needed something else to help them with the different paragraphs in an essay. So I found the "sandwich" technique online and quickly made visual aids for the review. Here is the paragraph sandwich:

On the test the students had to write a sentence about their class, using proper capitalization and punctuation. One of the boys wrote the sentence: My teacher Mrs. Bodeker is a good teacher. That just made my day!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Chicago Bulls

Last night Travis and I went to a Chicago Bulls game at the United Center. One of his classmates arranged for a group of the students to go with discounted tickets. We were pretty much at the very top, but still we were at a Bulls game! This was my first professional basketball game to go to. We watched the Bulls play the Denver Nuggets, and they won! Hopefully we can go to at least one game of all the professional Chicago teams. Travis received a compliment last night from a group of girls. I had to get up a few times during the game, and the best way out was to hop over our seats to the top and go down the stairs. Of course when I would come back Travis would get up and hold my hand to help me down. On my second time coming down this group of girls wanted to tell me how nice my husband was for always helping me down. Yes, he is a good one!

Here are some pictures from the game:

Here is the final score. We received a coupon for McDonalds which said if the Bulls scored 100 points and won you would get a free Big Mac. As soon as we hit the 100 points Travis and some others kept chanting "Big Mac, Big Mac!"

Thursday, February 19, 2009


On Monday I received a call about a part-time position as a tutor which would start on Tuesday and run through mid-March. Since I am still waiting to hear from the Rotary and don't have anything else in the works I accepted the job. I did receive an email from Rotary last week letting me know that they have yet to make a decision--so I am still in the running.

On Tuesday I drove to Niles, IL to meet with the supervisor I would be in contact with and to learn exactly what the tutor position would be doing. I haven't tutored before so I wasn't sure what it entailed. The job is for Tuesday and Thursday from 3:00-4:30 at an elementary school in North Chicago. I have a group of three boys, one in fifth grade, one in fourth grade and one in third grade. On Tuesday the supervisor came with me to show me how it works and told me I could jump in at any time. I let her run the majority of the show so I could see the full routine. There is a binder with all of the lessons and all of the materials included. The lessons are over English/Language Arts and Math. On Tuesday the lesson was mainly over pronouns, nouns and verbs. I wanted to establish myself as a tutor with the boys before the session was over and before it was all on me next time, so I handled the very last session of the lesson. The boys are very sweet, attentive and eager to learn.

On Thursday it was just me going over a lesson on punctuation and the structure of paragraphs. I had received a call from the supervisor earlier letting me know that the old tutor might come by to say goodbye, but it wasn't for sure. In the middle of the lesson he showed up with a pizza and coke. So we had a pizza party break and I chatted with Mr. Quigley. He is the Reading Specialist for the district and because his schedule was busy he had to stop tutoring. The first lesson went well. We didn't make it all the way through, but we will pick up where we left off next time.

I am very excited about this temporary position. Even though it is very part-time, I enjoy having something to do and not just anything. I am making a difference in the education of three young boys.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Anniversary

Travis and I had a wonderful anniversary. I felt well enough by the time we left for dinner, though I did stuff a stash of napkins (I used up all the kleenex) in my purse. Again I had no idea where we were going to dinner. Travis picked a wonderful restaurant in Lake Forest, a very swanky, well-to-do town. We were greeted by the manager and taken upstairs to the Bank Lane Bistro. We were seated on the patio, which during the winter is glassed in with overhead heaters. We started out with an appetizer of calamari which was excellent. I had a salad which consisted of a mixture of greens encircled by thinly cut pieces of cucumber. Both Travis and I picked fish entrees. He had the Australian Baramundi and I had a fish that started with a k. I can't remember the name, probably because I had never heard of it before. Both dishes were excellent and were light enough to where we didn't feel overtly full. Since we still had some room we ordered dessert. Travis had the chocolate creme brulee and I had the warm melted center chocolate cake. Of course both desserts were delicious. How can you go wrong with chocolate?

As we were leaving we had our waiter take a picture of us to commemorate the event(see below). After the picture Travis was able to shake hands with the cook and complement him on the meal. He had never meet the cook at a restaurant before and was excited by this. We thoroughly enjoyed the meal and hope to sometime go back.

We ended up not going out to a movie but renting one instead. I liked this idea a lot better, one because I was running out of napkins, and two, there really wasn't much playing in the theater that I wanted to see. However, there are many movies that are out to rent which neither of us have seen. Travis picked the movie and chose wisely. We spent a wonderful evening watching the thriller Eagle Eye, a movie we both had been wanting to see.

Overall we had a very enjoyable anniversary.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentine's and Anniversary

Travis and I had a wonderful Valentine's Day. Since our anniversary is only two days after V-day we didn't do too much. I did receive my traditional rose from my dad which is sitting nicely in a vase which hasn't had flowers in it for quite awhile. Travis got me a sweet card and a simple but wonderful gift: a package of those gourmet M&M's--triple chocolate! Those things are the best: milk chocolate, white chocolate, and dark chocolate all in one. Because he has two tests this coming week he spent most of the day studying, but later that evening we went to an ice cream place we had been told about. It is called Oberwise and they are big up in this area. I don't crave ice cream that much, but Travis loves it and misses Blue Bell. Oberwise had some pretty good stuff. We decided to splurge and get something more than just a scoop of ice cream. I got the hot fudge brownie sundae and Travis got the old fashioned sundae. Both were delicious and we have decided to visit this ice cream place again.

Today is our one year anniversary. It is amazing how fast this year has flown by! Travis and I have been a little sick with congestion gunk. Travis had it pretty bad last week right when he had two finals. And lucky me I started feeling the symptoms last night and woke up today feeling awful. With each passing hour I feel a little better, however my nose resembles Rudolph. I'm sure I will be much better by this evening. Some friends of ours gave us a generous amount of money at Christmas time to "play" with. We decided to keep it for our anniversary. All I know is that we are going to dinner and a movie. Travis is keeping it secret where we are eating. I little while ago he surprised me with flowers and a card. What a sweetie!

I will update later this week and let you know where we end up eating.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The Legend of the Stache

As many of you may remember from an earlier post, Travis was growing a moustache for three months as part of a bet to raise money for a diabetic organization. Many of you were privileged to meet the stache during our trip to Texas. The cutoff date for the bet was February 1st. So Saturday night/Sunday morning at midnight Travis removed the hair that we both had become accustomed to. And because the power of the stache was broken...the Cardinals lost the Super Bowl.

Here are some pictures from the momentous night: