charlene l. brown



I look forward to hearing from you :)

Although not technically 2014, I went down to Wilber to help Leanne’s t-shirt painting session.

Emily started the year in Jacksonville, FL for the Gator Bowl.  Didn’t see them on TV but heard them playing!  She’s here with the only other girl trombones.

A classmate posted this picture on facebook.  Can you find me?  What a bunch of rag-tag Kindergarteners!

Music Club members walked over to Walnut Creek Retirement Center to sing songs for and with the residents.  Then we played bingo with them!  What a fun outing!

Ecology Club members took a trip to the Wetland Center of Fontenelle Forest to see the workings of the beaver and other wildlife.  It was great to be outside for an hour with an experienced guide filling us in on all that we were seeing.  Thanks to Kate Murphy of Fontenelle Forest!

PTO sponsored a movie night of Despicable Me 2.  And we all dressed like minions for the day!

Those are some pretty long teeth and big foot prints!

This is the beaver den.

This is half of our group as we talk to the trail head.

Went to see John McCutcheon at LAFTA.  He’s still as verbose and talented as he was back in the 90’s when I played in the Winfield Symphony to back him up at a concert there!  I don’t think there’s a folk instrument he doesn’t play :)

All City 2014 ~ the last time to use the Civic Auditorium as they will be tearing it down!  18 Chandler View students attended.  Over 2000 musicians perform for this concert as the middle school and high school chorus, band, and orchestra performs as well.  Our principal took this picture of the 6th grade chorus performing.

Remember making Valentine boxes at school?  Well this young lady is in the Children’s Classics reading group and has fallen in love with Sherlock Holmes!  Each side of her box had a character and a quote.  Amazing!  It feels so good when a child learns the magical powers of reading a book!

And in order to sharpen the Children’s Classics members observational skills, we had a lesson on how to take and identify fingerprints.  We used powdered charcoal and scotch tape!

The Ecology Club traveled to Wenninghoff Farm after school one evening and helped transplant basil into bigger pots and we also made seed tapes (carrot, radish, spinach, onion) to plant in our Chandler View garden. 

Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn on tour with The Del McCoury Band.

What a wonderful night of bluegrass!

Emily and I went to see the Million Dollar Quartet.  I thought the weakest singer on stage was Elvis!

I heard the Cleveland Orchestra under the direction of Giancarlo Guerrero.  What a wonderful sound they produce!  Each individual instrument could be heard even when the whole orchestra was playing.  The level of listening and attention to balance was out of this world! 

The next night I heard the Kansas City Chorale under the direction of Charles Bruffy.  at 1st Plymouth!  The concert of all Irish music  was a luscious sound bath.  One of their pieces entitled Jerusalem, was somewhat of a round for the ladies only and they used the huge cathedral to let their voices play off each other!  They also walked around the sanctuary when they sang so the piece just swirled around us.  Very cool!

Wow!  If you ever get a chance to hear Vadym Kholodenko, go!  I heard him play Tchaikovsky’s piano concerto No. 1 with the Omaha Symphony.  He is stunning!  I guess he should be, he won the Van Cliburn gold medal :)

Spring Break

Monday - to see the ophthalmologist.  Said tear in retina looks contained and things looked good.  Wants to see me in 6 months!

Tuesday - to car mechanic 700 dollar fluids, filters repair.

  1. - to see dermatologist.  He removed three spots on back and froze two on face.

Wednesday - to see the gastroenterologist about pain in my middle.

- off to Kansas City to see Amanda Ripley’s book talk at public library about The Smartest Kids in the World.  Had her autograph my book!

As you can see the lecture was well attended.

The food at the Blue Bird Bistro was excellent farm to table!

Thursday morning we ate at the Opera House and across the street was the MO Extension office and this wonderful hardware store that had tons of seeds and great prices on spices, along with just about anything you’d want for the great out-of-doors!

We stopped in Nebraska City at the Lied Lodge to have lunch.

Thursday - got home and went to see ENT because my right eye was hurting like there was infection in it.  ENT said things were clean as a bell!  So why does my eye hurt?  Perhaps a sty??

Friday - to see gastroenterologist and had an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy.  They found a sore made by acid reflux!

Ended Friday with the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra all Czech Concert.  Many were in their kroje’s.  Very nice! 

We also visited the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts!  Wow!  Two beautiful performance halls.

Chandler View’s Music Club has a ceili for St. Patrick’s Day!  We invited our parents, teachers, and had Gloria Watters come to call our dances.  Afterwards we celebrated with potato soup, soda bread, green punch and cookies. 

Yong Zhao was in Lincoln and presented at the EN Thompson Forum.  What a brilliant man telling us to be happy with our education system and not worry about test scores and rankings.  Wonderful speaker although hard to understand at times.

Emily and I went to see Sister Act at the Orpheum.  High energy, but sound balance problems made it impossible to hear the words of some of the songs:( 

Music Club members got a chance to act out the opera of Cinderella.   We will be going to that production on Sunday, April 27th.  Playing dress up is always fun :)

Leanne and I attended Andrea Wulf’s book talk on the Founding Gardeners at Lauritzen Gardens.  My!  What an enjoyable person and scholar :)

We also stopped at the Benson library and got seeds for the Chandler View Garden.  You can check out 6 packets a month with no return!  Not very many seeds in a packet, but enough for kids to learn what the plant looks and acts like.

Leanne and I traveled to Beatrice to hear about Bluebirds, but the big excitement was getting to see prairie chickens and hearing them do their booming!  We thought it would be a miracle if we saw one since we really didn’t know where to look at Burchard Lake, but a few minutes after we got into the blind, in flew a chicken!  And one flew onto the roof of the blind :)

We ate supper at The Black Crow.

Our Music Club is getting ready to go see Cinderella and so we just had to act out the story a couple times!

Students were busy out in the garden and in the school yard, planting potatoes, strawberries and fertilizing trees!

For Earth Day the Ecology Club members gave each classroom a plastic container and seeds to plant!  We also planted a tree with the help of Green Bellevue on our playground!

Our Music Club and UNO music students walked over to Walnut Creek Retirement Center and spent time singing and enjoying getting to know each other.  Afterwards we came back to school for some fried chicken from the gas station!  A very fun event that made everyone smile.

Music Club goes to Spaghetti Works and Cinderella!

What better way to celebrate a year of participating in Chorus than cookies and milk?  Our 5th graders enjoyed their time immensely.

This is the pit for Wicked!  Emily and I attended after a great meal at Lot 2.

The University sponsored a birdwatching walk at Prairie Pines.  I saw my first Yellow warbler!  It’s very beautiful out there :)

Ecology Club members were treated to kayak lessons and then a chance to prove themselves at the Wetlands of Fontenelle Forest.  In return we planted a few milkweed seeds for our friends the monarch butterflies.

The month of June is Camp Cougar at Chandler View Elementary.  This year’s theme was Saddle Up for Success.  So let’s take a look at what we did.

1st Graders were very excited to cut spinach and even more excited to take it home to eat!

Lisa Larson brought her riding barrel for the kids and even our paras got in on the fun!

The 2nd graders were off to King Science HS to view their outdoor garden, their salt water aquarium, the hydroponics room and to see their planetarium show.

The winter was very hard on the knock-out roses.  We had to prune them back and students helped to remove the cut dead branches.  The yarrow was also replanted.

Leanne and I attended a pollinator class at Lauritzen Gardens.  It was very interesting to learn how flowers help bees and ants and bats to pollinate for reproduction.

Our 2nd graders traveled to Walnut Creek Lake Recreation Area for some Cowboy Cookin’ presented by Leanne and a couple 4-Her’s from Saline County Extension Service.  Lisa Larson brought her riding barrel and talked to the students about horses.  I had the students looking through binoculars, picking mulberries, taking a nature walk and drawing their masterpieces with charcoal.  All in all, a great day for the kids!  We even had a sing-a-long after we ate our vittles! 

Students experience a wide variety of ways to be helpful citizens during  Camp Cougar.  They planted an herb garden, did mulching around the building’s landscaping and of course kept the recycle bins from overflowing!  We kept the bird feeding station going and helped to keep the weeds down too.

The 3rd graders went to the Union Pacific Railroad museum in Council Bluffs and learned many things about the old west.  We walked across the street to the park to eat lunch and catch some water from their splash pad.

Emily and Mark ran in the Tuxedo Park race while Leanne and I watched and then we walked in the one mile trail event!

The garden keeps us busy, as these Jump Start Kindergarteners pulled some beets and picked some peas!

Third Graders presented the Triple C (Camp Cougar Cowboys) Musical about the Old Chisholm Trail for the entire student body the last day of camp.  Emily came and ran sound!

With Camp Cougar over, it was time for me to do some yard work.  Planted some bushes and put guards around them, power-washed the deck and started staining it.  All done but the flat areas.  Even fixed the legs so the lawn service won’t ruin them with the weed-eaters!

For the 4th of July, we made food, played our accordions and even took a picture:)

What does this dead beaver have in common with me?  Well let’s just say he and I were feeling about the same way after umbilical hernia surgery and a fatty lump was removed from my left shoulder!

That evening we had some rain clouds come through and Leanne went out and took this picture.  Can you see the angel?  Leanne’s secretary said it must have been mom looking out for us!

The deck is finished!  Yea!

Once upon a time, I laid down to sleep and my heart was bouncing all over my chest.  So went to ER and stayed over night at St E’s and they found I have PVC.  Premature Ventricular Contractions that amazingly are benign!  Had to wear a monitor for 24 hours so became a bionic woman for a short time:)

Went to school to set up my room and had help from two students, Izzy and Chloe.  They were such good help I took them to an activity center and let them play awhile before DQ!!

Thanks to someone leaving the school garden gate open, we had bunnies in the garden!  They caused lots of destruction before we got rid of them!

So what do you do with over 700 postcards I’ve received from my postcard club?  Well I thought I’d hang some up to look at.  I painted this corner with magnetic paint.

Well that didn’t work as the magnets just slid down the wall.  So I painted over and put up cork boards.  But as you can see my “whites” did not match so I ended up putting an accent wall in my living room!

I got 3 colors and tested them on the wall.  “Endless Summer” was the winner!  Leanne had to bring her 10 ft ladder in for me to reach the top of the vaulted ceiling. 

And while Mark and Leanne had the truck in town, they brought me my new grill from Sears!  It will never be so clean again!

I drove down to Nebraska City and this HoneyCrisp apple was so huge, it had my name written all over it :)

A Meal at Lot 2 with Karla, one of our 3rd grade teachers.

My new “old” car!  My mechanic found a 2005 Buick with only 78,000 miles on it ~ compared to my 310,000; it looked too good to pass up :)

Corn harvest!  Just in time for Open House :)

The Cornhusker Marching Band.  I get to watch Emily practice on game days and I go to her concerts :)

The Ecology Club went to work with Fontenelle Forest folks to gather seeds to replant a prairie down in the wetlands.  What a great way for our little fingers to help :)

The Ecology Club worked on a new garden this herb garden.  And lo and behold, a watermelon grew there - planted no doubt by a seed-spitting Kindergartener last year.  So of course our 1st graders this year, got to eat the best tasting watermelons around!

What a wonderful way to celebrate fall with a trip to the farm!

Cleaning up the CV garden!

Einstein made a visit to CV for Halloween!


Dad turned 88!  We had quite the duck meal!

Ecology Club’s November party had apples, strawing strawberries, reading in the dark, recycling old t-shirts into handy bags, and some poetry on the computers about nature.

And don’t forget the pizza!

After a wonderfully, amazing meal at The Grey Plume, Emily and I went to see the equally amazing Rocketts! one goes hungry at our table :)

“Cougars Stylin’ for the Holidays” was the title of our Christmas program.  You can see the Kindergarteners were lighting the world with their candles, and the three wise men were following the star on a fishing pole.  Our administrators really went all out as did the whole staff to pull off a successful concert. will show you video from our program.

The 5th and 6th Grade Choruses walked over to Walnut Creek Retirement Center and sang for and with the residents.   One resident said, “You’ll have to come back.  These hugs will only last until the new year!”

I think I can safely say we all had a good time sharing music, especially when the residents have cookies for us afterwards!

Ecology Club’s December craft party consisted of making necklaces, and ornaments from recycled materials.  We made some almond bark pretzels and even harvested some herbs.

I joined the Berkeley book club and students are from all over the world!  It’s been fun and insightful.  Our next book is Huckleberry Finn.  Come join us ~ it’s free :)