Monday, December 15, 2014

Fernbank Museum's Winter Wonderland @FernbankMuseum #holiday #familyfun


I was invited with my family to attend Fernbank Museum of Natural History's Winter Wonderland in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own.

Pretty much any time we go to Fernbank, we have a lot of fun.  We check out the current travelling exhibit (still the Goosebumps Fear exhibit), any arts and crafts (I made a Snowman puppet), and of course the current permanent exhibits as well.  On the day we went, the Center for Puppetry Arts was out, and they were helping the kids make the puppets (Stanley the Heartsick Snowman).  Being a kid at heart, they let me join in.

When we toured the Goosebumps exhibit, I thought the "best" part of it was the hands on portion.  You could check your fear response to animals, sounds, and falling.  I skipped the falling, I know I have a fear there.  There was also one to see how brave you were at being shocked (yes, by electricity).  Not too bad, but I did jump.  Emory was also on hand with real brains that you could touch.  I didn't touch, just photographed.  My son and I had done that experience at his Elementary school some time ago.  He wasn't eager to repeat it.  Being a volunteer at the Aquarium meant I had to visit the local alligator residents as well.  Too cute.  You can see some of the scheduled holiday activities at the museum here.


Of course, the big draw to the Winter Wonderland (other than the activities) is the trees. Lots of trees. My kids took over my photography for this part. They were competing as to who could take the better picture. I think they both did well. The trees, though, were very nice. Representative of different countries, you could see some of the culture and history through the trees.  There are more than 30 trees on exhibit for you and your family to check out.


As always, Fernbank Museum is a wonderful day out for the family. We don't get to go often, but when we do we always have fun.

Friday, December 12, 2014

On being a substitute

It's always a challenge to go into a new class and try to get the kids to do what they are expected to do.  The level of the challenge varies depending on the age of the kids and the type of class it is.  For example a group of 5th graders can be harder to manage than a mixed special education class.  Why?  The 5th grade class has more attitude to get around.  The SpEd class will (usually) have behaviors that you can predict and then stop or work around.

That doesn't mean that it's always that way.  In the many years I've been a sub, though, that has been the case.  There have been many days that I would prefer to work as a SpEd teacher than in general ed as a teacher.  I come home tired regardless. 

I have only worked once in High School.  The class was not one that I have any knowledge of.  So it was effectively a baby sitting job.  I would much rather actually interact with the kids than sit and watch them.

More often than not you will find me in the elementary schools.  I'm most comfortable in the school my kids attended.  I'm willing, though, to at least try the others in my area.  I'm not working as much this school year, but I plan to work more next year when both of my kids are in high school.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Blue Man Group @TheFoxTheatre IN ATLANTA FROM APRIL 7-12, 2014 @BravePRAtl

DECEMBER 8, 2014 (ATLANTA) – Blue Man Group returns to Atlanta’s Fox Theatre from April 7-12, 2015 as part of the Fifth Third Bank Broadway in Atlanta 2014/2015 series. Tickets go on sale December 14. Tickets start at $33 and are available at by visiting foxtheatre.org/blueman, calling 1-855-285-8499 or visiting the Fox Theatre Box Office (660 Peachtree St NE, Atlanta, GA 30308). Group orders of 10 or more may by placed by calling 404-881-2000.-

The performance schedule is:
Tuesday-Thursday      7:30 p.m.
Friday                          8 p.m.
Saturday                     2 p.m.8 p.m.
Sunday                        1 p.m.6:30 p.m.

The theatrical tour features brand new content highlighted by classic Blue Man favorites.

The new sound, set, and video design centering around a proscenium-sized LED curtain and high-resolution screen create an entirely new, high-impact visual experience for Broadway houses across the nation.

Blue Man Group has received praise from critics across the country. The Baltimore Sun raves, “Blue Man Group packs a wallop. It’s a big, loud, funny, silly, visually arresting production!” The Charlotte Observer says Blue Man Group is “a hugely entertaining show for anyone ages 9 to 90”. The San Antonio Express-News proclaims it’s “an exhilarating, thought-provoking, laugh-yourself-silly evening of percussion-heavy rock music, comedy and playful commentary.”

Blue Man Group creates experiences that defy categorization. Blue Man Group is best known for multi-media performances that feature three bald and blue characters who take the audience on a journey that is funny, intelligent and visually stunning. A live band, whose haunting tribal rhythms help drive the show to its climax, accompanies the  Blue Men.
“Our theatrical productions take a humorous look at what we like to call 2.5-D space,” says Blue Man Group Co-Founder Philip Stanton.  “An example of what we mean by this would be emailing or texting the person in the next office rather than walking over to talk to them face-to-face.”
“We say that no matter how high-tech things get, there’s still something human there. We’ll always need others, always need to collaborate. People still need to come together and look each other in the eye.  Through the Blue Man’s connection with the audience, we hope to encourage this human-to-human interaction, while helping people reconnect with their own sense of wonder and discovery, with their own sense of what is possible in their lives.”

About NETWORKS Presentations
Since 1995, NETworks has produced and managed over 45 touring productions in the US., U.K. and internationally. Current productions include Disney’s Beauty and the BeastBilly Elliot The Musical, Blue Man Group National Tour, Elf The Musical, Flashdance the Musical, The New 25th Anniversary Production of Les Misérables, Disney and Cameron Mackintosh’s Mary Poppins, Shrek The Musical and National Theatre of Great Britain’s production of War Horse touring the U.S.

About Blue Man Group
Blue Man Group has performed on five continents and has been seen by more than 25 million people around the world.  The company has permanent, sit-down productions in Berlin, Boston, Chicago, New York, Las Vegas and Orlando as well as popular North American touring show and tailored-made show on the Norwegian Cruise Lines ship, the Epic

Beyond the shows, Blue Man Group has become a mainstay in the popular culture zeitgeist, making live theatrical and musical appearances around the world, partnering with brands like Intel, M&M’s, TIM-Brasil and Mastercard to create memorable advertising and co-branding campaigns and launching a wave of innovative digital content.  Over the years, Blue Man Group has made countless television appearances on shows such as “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Live! With Regis and Kelly,” the Primetime Emmy Awards, “Ellen,” Schaag-den-Raab (Germany), WOWOW (Japan), “Cupcake Wars,” "Celebrity Apprentice" and “America’s Got Talent.”

As the company grows, it remains true to its vision of providing exciting experiences in a variety of media, appealing to a broad range of age groups and cultural backgrounds. Learn more at www.blueman.com

BROADWAY ACROSS AMERICA is part of the Key Brand Entertainment family of companies which includes Broadway.com, under the supervision of John Gore (Owner & CEO).  BAA is the foremost presenter of first-class touring productions in North America, operating in 40 markets.  As a leading Broadway producer, current productions include Beautiful, and Pippin. Past productions includeMillion Dollar Quartet, Hairspray, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, MemphisPromises Promises, and The ProducersBroadwayAcrossAmerica.comBroadway.com.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

"Les Misérables" Unveils Tales of Turmoil and Triumph at Aurora Theatre, January 15-March 1 @AuroraTheatre @BravePRAtl


LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga., (December 8, 2014) – Will you join in our crusade, who will be strong and stand with me? Audiences are invited to celebrate the global phenomenon of the French novel turned award-winning musical and motion picture Les Misérables.The revolution returns to the Aurora Theatre stage January 15 – March 1, 2015. Winner of five Suzi Bass Awards, including “Best Musical,” audiences will be immersed into Victor Hugo’s heart wrenching tale of passion, sacrifice and betrayal – a testament to the strength and survival of human spirit. With unforgettable melodies like Bring Him HomeMaster of the HouseI Dreamed a Dreamand On My Own, Aurora’s Mainstage theatre provides an intimate setting for audiences to become engrossed in one of the world’s most popular musicals.

Les Misérables speaks to generations of audiences, through musical genius and stories of vulnerability and passion,” says Aurora Producing Artistic Director Anthony Rodriguez. “After waiting 30 years to do this show, it exceeded all expectations. I’m thrilled for another opportunity to work with these amazing artists on this magical show. To those who did not get a ticket to our sold-out run in 2013, don’t miss this second chance at an extraordinary theatrical experience.”

Under the award-winning direction of Justin Anderson, Les Misérables follows the intertwined lives of several characters reeling from the legacy of the French Revolution, specifically the notorious convict Jean Valjean and his road to redemption. When met with the unexpected duty of raising the orphaned Cosette, Valjean vows to create a life of good will and peace, leaving the horrors of his soiled past behind. Emotionally charged and uplifting, this tale of how far one man will go to protect his loved ones produces a powerful production that resonates throughout the generations.  

With award-winning musical direction by Aurora’s Co-Founder and Resident Music Director Ann-Carol Pence and brilliant choreography by Sarah Turner Sechelski, the talented and creative team of Phil Male (set), Alan Yeong (costumes), Mike Post (lights), Scott Sargent (props) and Daniel Terry (sound) help audiences feel like a part of the action.

Recommended for audiences with an appreciation of culture and music, Les Misérables is presented January 15 – March 1, 2015. Discount weekday matinees will be offered on Wednesday, February 4 and 25 at 10 a.m. for $20-$30 per person. Regular show time tickets can be purchased for $30-$50 per person online at tickets.auroratheatre.com or by calling the Box Office at 678-226-6222.

Show times are as follows:
·         Wednesday – Friday: 8 p.m.
*No Wednesday performance on February 4
·         Saturday: 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.
·         Sunday: 2:30 p.m.