Thursday, December 22, 2011

Simple Pleasures..

One of our local radio stations does a segment every Thursday morning titled, "Simple Pleasures". People call in and share things that are very small but make a huge impact. Every week I listen to the things people share and think about how blessed I am. This was a huge eye opener today, of all days.
 
It seems every morning I have been driving to work nearly in tears because of a song or a Christmas miracle that was shared on the radio. This morning? Instead of playing Pity Party of One, I realized I need to count my simple pleasures, especially during a time of year that is so painful because of my father's passing. You see, this will be our first "official" Christmas without my Dad. Last year we were all just in a dark hole and cancelled Christmas. This is also our first family vacation without my dad.
 
While I've spent many nights anxious about what is to come, I now have a renewed sense of peace. While my dad will not be with us physically, he will be with us in our hearts. A place he will never leave. My family and I are so very fortunate to travel this Christmas to the sunny beaches of Curacao (off the coast of Venezuela, if you're wondering) and we will be together. Together. Something many families cannot do, whether it be due to miles, work commitments, or deployment. We will be together.
 
And that, my friends, is my simple pleasure. Togetherness.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Weiner....dogs?

Little Big Man came in with a new t-shirt today. It was, uh, a little inappropriate.

It said, "I love my wiener" with a picture of a wiener dog. The best part? Trying to explain to him why the shirt was inappropriate. I said something to the effect of, "Your shirt is talking about wiener dogs, but not everyone understands that. Someone might think you're talking about your, uh, well, uh, privates."

When he went to time out (in another room with another adult), he told the adult, "My shirt is appropriate. It's talking about wieners. Your wiener is your private." Yes, he totally meant inappropriate but said it wrong. The adult was all sorts of confused.

Um.. hello? You sent your child in to school with a shirt referencing wieners? Wow. Klassy.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

365 days...

One year ago today, I lost my father.

My mom put it well when she commented on Facebook about the things she had learned through this. Besides the crazy emotions, she mentioned the importance of time and compassion for others.

Please take time to tell those you love how much they mean to you. Have compassion for others, as you don't know what they are going through. If anyone would have crossed paths with me today, they may have mistaken my crabby attitude for someone who is just plain rude. Instead, I was having a hard time keeping my emotions in check. But to the cashier who smiled and told me to be blessed, I thank you. Your kind words reminded me to count my blessings. While I can't hug my dad physically, or hear his laugh, I can remember the hugs we shared and the jokes he told.

I am still grieving and will be for some time, but I'm thankful to be surrounded by those who care for me. I'm thankful for a roof over my head and food on the table. I have heat that works and will have a wonderful Christmas. I'm luckier than a lot of people this Christmas because of that.

And because I have a guardian angel looking down on me.

Sent from my iPad

Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Presents and Sand

My little man was upset today because his dad made him eat broccoli. He was practically devastated his father would make him do something so horrid. I began explaining that it was not corporal punishment, especially because I happen to love broccoli and if someone forced me to eat it, I would happily oblige.

That was when Christmas present ideas began flowing.

"Ms. L, I'm going to buy you broccoli for Christmas because you love it so much. I have $15, how much broccoli can I buy you?"

Um.. that's a whole lotta broccoli, my friend.

"Or, I could buy you a DS game that has puppies instead of shooting. I know you don't like shooting. But you love Zoey, so a puppy game would be cool."

Yeah, well.. I don't have a DS.

"I'll buy you a DS and a puppy game."

And later on? In the middle of math, "I can't skip count by tens when I have sand in my ears! It's impossible!"

Yes, skip counting and other great mathematical endeavors are impossible when sand invades your ears, rendering you unable to complete math tasks.

I LOVE my job.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Inspiration

Or, the story of how a 10 year old has forever changed my outlook on life.
I'm not sure if I've told you all this, but I'm a coach for Girls on the Run (GOTR). GOTR is a program that encourages young ladies in grades 3-5 to believe in themselves, through running. We spend 12 weeks learning about ourselves, others, and our community, while training for a 5K. Each of the girls participates in the 5K with a running buddy- an adult who completes the 3.1 miles by their side.

Enter "Jill". Jill is a 5th grader who is very overweight. She signed up because "why not?" (her words, not mine). Her family encouraged her, but doubted her ability to actually run the 5K. And I'll be honest, I did, too. In practice, she worked to the best of her ability, but never could run a whole lot. She encouraged her teammates, but always doubted herself. If one of the other girls spoke poorly about themselves, she was the first to give that girl a compliment. She believed in everyone but herself.

Today? She completed a 5K. It wasn't pretty. There were tears. We walked, walked, and walked. It was blood, sweat, and tears for every inch of those 3.1 miles. At mile one, I was full of doubt. I couldn't see any other girls and I knew we were headed for dead last. At the first water station, we started to see the front of the pack. They were minutes away from finishing. We were MILES away from finishing. At mile 2, we didn't see anyone except race volunteers. At mile 2.5, one person asked us if we were the last ones out there. We were. But we weren't going to stop. At mile 3, she asked me what the point was in finishing because no one would be at the finish line, we were the last ones out there. She cried for a moment and asked to stop. She told me she couldn't do it.

But SHE did it. SHE finished.

SHE INSPIRES ME.

I am forever changed by the courage it took for Jill to finish that 5K. She could have given up. But she didn't.

She finished that race, and changed my life.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Vom City

Ya'll.. I almost vommed. Straight up vom in my mouth in front of my kids.

All because I fall for peer pressure every.single.time.

My assistant was all like, "Something smells funky. What could it be?"
And I'm all like, "Uh. I have no clue." She did some crazy recon
mission and looked all over to find the culprit of the smell.

She found it, all right and proceeded to make my intern smell it. Then
she asked me to smell it and I immediately said, "No way. I'm no
fool." They were egging me on even more and I fell for the peer
pressure.

I took a baby whiff. Just a small one. Tiny, even.

And BAM! It hit me like a ton of bricks and before I knew it, I was
gagging and vomming in my mouth.

In front of the kids.

I ran out of there so quickly, swallowed, and went back with a smile
on my face. Well, after I rinsed out my mouth of course.

Go ahead, sign me up for teacher of the year award. I got this.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It's official...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Fudgesicle...

Crap.

Oh no.

What have I done?!

I just signed up for the 2012 Sun Trust Rock 'n Roll half marathon in DC.

Crap.

Oh no.

I think I might have lost my mind.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Spoiled...

Okay ladies..I have the best guy in the world.

Guess who gave ME a present on his birthday? Not just an ordinary present (that's not how he rolls) but jewelry. A strand of pearls! A beautiful pearl necklace.

I suppose I'll keep him around for awhile.

While we are on the topic of spoiled, I realized I never told you all about my birthday! Long story, but I'll make it short. Roomie arranged for mom to fly down, BFF arranged a surprise party. The boy kept me busy so everyone could gather. And I was shocked as hell to see my mom there!

The mom bought me an iPad. The boy bought me a super hot coach bag. The BFF got me Vera. And BFF from high school sent a tar-jay gift card which came in super handy a few weeks ago when I bought a pasta container. Don't judge, I hate the stupid boxes of spaghetti, so this bad boy keeps it upright and airtight. Other people were so very thoughtful, too.

So, as my brother would say... I'm not spoiled, I'm just well taken care of.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Missing Him..

They say time heals all wounds. And I'm sure after a good amount of time has passed, that's probably true. A year, however, is just not enough time.

In the next couple of weeks, I will be tackling some big hurdles.

First up? Thanksgiving. One of my dad's favorite holidays. He loved Thanksgiving because we had all of our family together (an event that only happens once a year) and we ate ourselves sick. My dad loved his family and his food. While I'm thankful I will still get the opportunity to spend time with family, a huge hole will be there. A black cloud hanging over the holiday.

I used to cook with my dad by my side. While it wasn't always pretty (we ALWAYS seemed to run in to eachother and my parents kitchen is not small by any means) and there was sure to be a comment under our breath aimed toward other, it will be lonely without him there. It will be painfully lonely in the kitchen.

A few short weeks after that hurdle, we will have made it one year without my father. It makes me break out in a sweat just thinking about it. A year. Three hundred sixty five days without my dad. I've done a lot in those days, but it just seems so unreal. I will no longer measure his passing in months, I'll switch to years. How? How has it been a year?

After that? Oh.. that big holiday. Christmas. His second favorite holiday. We're not really celebrating it this year. Instead of white snowflakes, we'll be laying on the white beaches of Curacao. It will be a wonderful vacation, I'm sure. But again, that hole. The big, gaping hole that will be in our hearts. He will not be there. Do we know how to travel without him? I'm not sure. There has never been a time, that I can remember, that I went on a vacation with the entire family, without my dad. How will we make it through? Will we smile knowing he is with us? When my brother laughs, it's my dad's laugh. When he smiles, it's my dad. Heck, just looking at my brother, we see my dad. But yet, he's not there. I know he's "with us in spirit" but sometimes spirit just isn't enough.

I have a heavy heart these days. And the next couple of weeks will only add to that. While I'm blessed to have a wonderful family and I wouldn't trade them for the world, I do wish for one more day with him. One more day to hear his laugh. One more hug. One more I love you. One more...everything.

I pray that my family and I can make it through these next couple of weeks.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

F@rt Guns

Please pardon the interruption... (you know, the silence that has been pretty constant for a few weeks now on this here blog. No excuses, just lack of content. i.e. I'm super boring.)
 
This little gem of a story was just what I needed to break the funk. The blog funk.
 
One little fella from one of the other classes was playing with my little darling when I overheard him talking about guns. Curious about what the boys might actually be up to, I cleared my throat and reminded them, "Boys. Remember, we don't talk about guns in school."

The little fella turned to me and said, "But I'm talking about a gun everybody has."

"Ugh, what? A gun we all have?", I asked him curiously.

"Yes! A fart gun! You know," he said, pointing to his behind, "toot, toot, toot! A fart gun!"

I began laughing uncontrollably because I'm that mature.

Where do they get their material? Kids.
 
 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Ohhhhh em geeeee

Mommy surprised me for my birthday weekend AND I'm posting from my NEW iPad. Officially the luckiest girl in the world. (we won't mention that I'm knocking on thirty's door.. Mmmmkay?)

I'll post details and the video of Mommy, BFF, and roomie pulling off the surprise.

For now? I'll be busy with my iPad.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

...investment

I'm kind of sort of thinking I need to invest in a filter. A filter for my brain that goes all the way to my mouth.
 
Seriously, not a day goes by that I don't think, "Quit sticking your foot in your mouth!". I mean, it starts to get a little questionable when I realize that I may or may not have a direct impact on molding the minds of our youth. And, I'm pretty sure the little faces staring at me are pretty young and still quite impressionable.
 
Here's the low-down...allow me to set the scene.
 
We're doing read aloud time when one of the boys asks if we can read the book about fire trucks and other emergency vehicles. Since I'm, without a doubt, the world's best teacher, I immediately shouted, "I can't wait to hear all about fire trucks! I know we're going to learn so much reading this book." yada, yada, yada.
 
As we're reading along, one of the boys remarks, "That truck looks a lot like a po-lease car. They both got lights on top." Ah, we're making connections to the text. Good readers make connections. I have taught them something! I'm so pleased. I'll follow up and see what else they know about these types of emergency vehicles.
 
"Fire trucks and po-lease cars can run red lights and stop signs because they have to get to there quick!" (I SO wanted to correct his use of quick.. it totally should have been quickly because it's an adverb, but I just couldn't bring myself to correct him when we were learning so much!)
 
"You're right. Police cars and fire trucks drive quickly and run red lights and stop signs when it's safe to do so. Did you know Ms. L had the opportunity to ride in a police car? The police car was going very fast and we ran a lot of red lights and stop signs. It was really neat!"
 
"I rode in a po-lease car. Did you go to jail, too?"
 
Wait. Hold up. Crap. Oh no. What have I done? I just admitted to these little boys that I rode in a police car. Normally people only ride in a police car if they are under arrest, you know under lock and key with handcuffs on. Oi. This isn't looking good for my teacher of the year award.
 
I then had to back track and explain that I have a friend who is a police officer and I rode in his car (is it your boyfriend?!) when he was working and we went to a call that required him to turn on his lights and sirens.
 
How much do you want to bet NONE of them heard that and go home to tell their parents their teacher rode in a cop car because she was under arrest?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Have you seen them?

I may have lost my marbles. Quite literally. And figuratively.
 
Literally? Well, roomie handed me two red marbles and said, "I wanted to return these to you. Nahla (her dog) was chewing on them. I'm so sorry, I'm not sure when she got them, but here they are." I stared blankly. Continued to stare blankly. She then replied, "They are yours, right? They aren't mine. So they have to be yours." Blank stare. "Uh.. I have no idea what those are or where they came from. They aren't mine."
 
Fast forward a week...
 
The roommate walks in and says, "Hey L, I found some more of those marbles. This time Zoey was eating them. Are you sure they aren't yours? Zoey was chewing on them in your bed. And last week when Nahla had them, she came from your room."
 
I'm positive they aren't mine. But they keep coming from my room. And I have no idea where the dogs could have found these marbles. Seriously, nothing in my life has marbles in it. It's not like there's some decoration with marbles. Or a toy with marbles. But, the dogs keep finding marbles in my room. I think they are doing it to torture me. It's working.
 
Figuratively?
 
Well.. work is a big ball of stress. My kiddos are having a hard time with the addition of our new old friend. As a result, I only get
approximately .08% of the teaching done I should be doing. And I spend a lot of time sighing, banging my head, and cursing inside my brain.
 
Yup. That's how we roll around here. Marbles are everywhere!

Friday, October 7, 2011

I'll take my nominations now..

You know, for teacher of the year.
 
I had a bit of a, uhm, slip of the tongue. Err.. chalk.
 
We were doing doubles and I had a great story about twins who have everything the same, including the same number of toys. So I was drawing a picture to show them holding their toys. Unfortunately, the picture wasn't quite anatomically correct in terms of the toy holding. It wasn't until I began counting (placing the dots in the center) that I realized what I had done. My assistant was laughing so hard he was crying. You know, because I drew flippin' boobs on stick people and made them almost anatomically correct.
 
Dear Lord, please tell me when I'll stop sticking my foot in my mouth while teaching. Or is this all I have to look forward to?
 
At least it provides a laugh.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Whoa.

I just said "fat chance" in a large room full of my peers, and some professionals who are higher up. Much higher up.
 
My bad.

Tales of a 10 Year Reunion..

I think I might have thrown up a bit in my mouth. I mean, no chance I am old enough to have just survived my 10 year reunion. Stop the presses, you might all be able to figure out how old I am. Don't you dare judge me.
 
Moving along. You know, to the meat and potatoes of this post.
 
So.. you know how everyone is thinking and looking to find who has gained the most weight... is the most successful... who fell from grace.. etc. Never fear. I'm the fattest. Nice, huh? Yup, skinny girl went off and ate everything she could put her fingers on for the last 10 years, making her gain approximately 987 pounds. Making her the fattest at her 10 year reunion. Nice.
 
Oh, and let's not forget..everyone was all like, "Oh! You're divorced?" Yup. My husband went off and left me. Probably because I ate too much. Props to the friend who couldn't believe that any many on the face of the earth would leave a woman like me. He's now officially my hero. Too bad he's getting married.
 
I got the pity vote, too. My dad just died. Booyah! Bonus points for me. I'm the fat, divorced, half orphaned girl. Sweet.
 
In all seriousness (yes, I'm capable of being serious!) I had a great time. I saw some faces I haven't seen in 10 years (minus pictures on facebook, of course. Which totally made it difficult because you kinda sorta knew what everyone was up to via facebook stalking, pictures, and status updates) and oddly enough, the majority of the crew wasn't my crew from high school, which was totally cool.
 
We chatted, had a few adult beverages, sang karaoke (not me!), and had many laughs. We brought up old memories, while making new ones.
 
Totally cool.
 
And please let me know why I have like 72 instances of using parenthesis?

Friday, September 30, 2011

F@rt

Lil Big Man: "fart, fart, fart, you smell like a fart. I'm going to fart. Pffffft. Excuse me I just FARTED!"
 
Me: "Please do not say the word fart again. If you say that word again, you will not earn your points and you will have to move your clip."
 
{approximately 5 minutes later....}
 
Me:"Boys! Hustle over and meet me at the FARTboard. OOPS! Smart Board."
 
All 3 boys: "awww! You just said the word!"
 
Lil Big Man: "Your clip needs to be moved."
 
I didn't have the hear to break it to them that I do not have a clip AND I can say fart whenever I want.
 
Fart, fart, fart, fart, fart, fart, fart!

Monday, September 26, 2011

I Hate Flying Things...

The roomie and I spent a relaxing Sunday pampering ourselves with mani's/pedi's and really good coffee.
As we were leaving the nail salon, I spotted a snickers bar. Snickers bite sized, of course. But still snickers. And still ooey and gooey and caramel-y and chocolate-y and .. and.. well, you get the point.

As I was ripping open the elusive snickers bar, I ruined my nail. For the third time. (yes, I'm super impatient and/or spastic and always hit my nails on something or touch them too early and pow! it's ruined.) And the roomie was totally making fun of me for being spastic/impatient and was all, "Wow.. I can't believe you had to have your nails retouched 3 times because you can't just sit like a normal person and let them dry."

Truth hurts.Whatevs.

I was plotting my revenge when all of a sudden a flippin' stink bug the size of Montana flew and landed on my hand. If you know anything about stink bugs, you know you can't squish them because they smell all kinds of gross. And they are totally prehistoric looking, so they look like they may be distant relatives of triceratops.


In my head I'm all like, "WTF do I do?! I can't squish this thing because there will be bug guts all over my hand. And I can't move my fingers because the roomie will make fun of me and I'm out of the salon now so I can't even get this shiz fixed. CRAP!" Outside my head, I'm all like, "aaaaaaaaaaaaah!" and I blew on the darn thing and won't you know it wouldn't even move! It was like the spider man of stink bugs. Again, I'm all like, "aaaaaaaaaaah!" and blowing my brains out trying to get this thing to fly away.

Roommate? Laughing.

Me? Freaking.

Stink bug? Likely laughing.

I finally decided to flick my hand. Won't you know that thing stood there and took it! I finally gave one good blow and it didn't budge, but then jumped off my hand. I totally showed that thing who is boss!

From there, we headed to the pet store to check out the prices on dog bones because when you have two dogs, it's like you go through bones in a hot second and all we ever do is spend $20 here and $20 there on stupid bones for the dogs. So we wanted them cheap.

We're just walking in when I see some 10 year old holding a freakin' gerbil in his hand and I'm all like, "Holy shiz! Drop that thing! It might bite you!" As I'm having a mental freak out, a bird begins squawking. We're talking screaming at us.

Now would be a great time to time-out and remind you that I'm deathly afraid of birds. I was attacked on multiple occasions growing up and I just can't handle them.

So I'm having a mental freak out about the creepy crawly gerbil while this 10 year old is all but making out with it, when the bird screams bloody murder at me. You know what I did? I ran. I ran out of the bloody pet store because I'm a baby and I'm scared to death of birds.

And you know what that 10 year old did? He laughed at me.

Sucker. Wait 'til the gerbil poops on your hand.

Images:
http://blog.webosaurs.com/tag/triceratops/
http://www.arkadiapest.com/stink_bugs

Saturday, September 24, 2011

That was.....uh... Weird.

Today I was driving, minding my own business. I happened to glance in the rearview mirror and see a police cruiser at the light I just went through. I'm all like, "Crap! Was I following the rules?" And quickly realized that I was. No big deal. Right?

Wrong. The cruiser goes through the light and starts driving really fast right behind me. Then the lights go on. No chance it was for me, right? I was following the rules.

Wrong.

Then I look in the mirror again to see if, hopefully, I know the officer. You know because the bf is an officer and I know a bunch of his friends.

I then realize it is a face I know. In fact, I know the face really well. It was my freakin' boyfriend! I was pulled over by my boyfriend.

Needless to say, I got away without a ticket.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Jealz.

I'm only in for a minute to make you all SUPER-jealous...
 
Last night? The Boy and I had "date night". It was his turn to make the plans (which I secretly LOVE because I have to make way too many decisions at work that.. well, by the time I get home, I can.not make a decision) and you know what he decided?
 
Dinner & shopping!
 
Shut the front door, ya'll. Shopping. Homeboy wanted to freakin' shop. Yes, please! Apparently he needed to get some socks and underoos and figured we could kill two birds with one stone, grab dinner at the mall, then grab his goods.
 
Here's the kicker. He wanted me to join in the fun and knew my funds are, well, limited. So he gave me money and told me to buy myself something nice. CHA CHING!
 
Until.. he gave me a stipulation. It couldn't be black, white, or gray. Apparently he thinks that's all I wear. (Which is totally true, but whatevs.)
 
Ironically, I made it work. I bought some really great clothes that were out of my element and I'm planning on rockin' them in the near future. Pictures. Promise.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Moron.

Remember how I moved recently?

My new address is all of one number off of my old address (with a totally different road name, town, and zip code...) and I effed up and typed the wrong address for the DMV when I changed it online. No biggie, right? WRONG. I didn't notice until AFTER I returned from the DMV to renew my driver's license.

The license I waited in line for an hour to get.

The one that cost me $30.

The one I literally got less than 3 hours prior to realizing my mistake.

Turns out they cost money to be replaced. And you can get a ticket for having an invalid driver's license.

To make matters worse? I realized it as I was walking into the gyne*cologists office and was almost hit by a car because I was walking down aisle with my head down, paying no attention to the driver who was driving balls to the wall to make their appointment. Seriously. Who is that excited to go to the gyne*cologist?

Probably the same person who pays $30 for a driver's license that is valid for 5 years with the WRONG address.

Excuses, Excuses...

I'm super lame at blogging lately. In my defense, though, I am just getting back into the swing of things with school starting, a new place, a new roommate, a new dog (the roomie's dog), and grad classes.

Basically, my day consists of waking up, going to school, staying late, coming home, watching the dogs engage in wrestle mania, yelling at the dogs, chatting with my roommate, doing schoolwork (either work or grad class), washing my face, going to bed. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

A few little funnies along the way, though.

John Cena, Jr: "Ms. L! Why I gotta tell you these words all the time?"
Me:  "So you can be a fabulous reader! These are words we see all the time when we read and we can't sound them out because they are rule breakers. So we're going to keep practicing to be all star readers!"
JCJ: "Can't we just tell everyone I can read?"

No, Johnny Jr. we can't tell them that. It's actually my job to teach you. Even though you don't want to learn and tell me that on a semi-regular basis.

A past kiddo had the audacity to tell me, "My new teacher is my favorite teacher. You were just my longest teacher."

Um, excuse me buddy? I put up with your shenanigans for 3 years. I taught you to read. I taught you to actually be a decent human being. She's put up with you for like 32 seconds and she takes my reigning title? Kids. No respect.

And... I may or may not have accidentally tripped over the SMARTBoard (it has yet to be hung.. grrrr.) and fell flat on my face. My kiddos came to my rescue and were very concerned for my safety. They suggested we tell the principal it had to be hung up immediately so nobody else would get hurt.

My little cutie pie has started talking up a storm! He's normally non-verbal and while that was utterly obnoxious, it's difficult to discourage his talking even when he's interrupting me. He totally comes out with some funny stuff and is a little parrot. He's all bossy and shiz to my other kid and the other kid (who is approximately 89 times his size and 2 grades older) totally takes it. I have to hide my laughter.

But thank goodness it's Friday. I need a break.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Homework & Birds...

Little Man told me today, "I don't have my homework because.. well, you'll never believe this, but a bird ate it!"
 
Ummmm... excuse me?
 
"I was doing my homework on the patio and I went inside to go to the bathroom, when a bird swooped down and took my homework."
 
But it's been raining nonstop for the past three days, how were you doing your homework in the rain?
 
"I was using an umbrella."
 
Let me clear this up, you were doing your homework on the patio, under an umbrella, when you went inside and a bird swooped down and took your homework?
 
"Yup."
 
Riiiiight. And here I thought you might tell me your dog ate it.
 
"I don't have a dog. Plus, a dog could get really sick if he ate paper."
 
If I call your mom, will she say the same story?
 
"Nope. She was in the bathroom when it happened."
 
Sure. Right. I believe you.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Sunshiney people

As most of you know, I just moved in with one of my girlfriends and we are totally digging our new pad. The pups get along famously and we spend most of our evenings giggling like little school girls. It's seriously like being in college again, only I have responsibility now. That part stinks, but it also provides an income so I can do fun things like drink wine, get my toes done, and make trips to Tar-jay on a semi-regular basis.
 
The only downfall? She's a morning person and I.am.not. I'm a peppy person approximately 80% of the time. Sure, we all have our moments but 6 AM is not one of mine. She's all, "Good morning!" and I'm all, "Grrrr." She's all perky and making breakfast and coffee and I'm all, "Grrr. Give me 5 more minutes. Grrr."
 
I may or may not have had to sit her down and fill her in on my morning shenanigans. Talking to me before 7 AM and expecting a response other than a grunt just ain't going to happen.
 
I laugh about it (after 7 AM, natch) because my dad used to say he couldn't talk to me until after I showered, did my hair, and got my make up on. Which is almost 100% true, except on the weekends because I usually don't get up and shower immediately. So that means it's usually about an hour after I get up. And totally on my own terms.
 
So ladies.. how many of you are all peppy, perky, glowing rays of sunshine in the AM?

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Updates, etc.

Wow! So much has gone on so far this week. So, we're going bullet-style.

  • Ya'll! I got a SMARTBOARD for my classroom. I'm so pumped. Thankfully I already know how to use it and I have some friends who gave me lots of tools to get me started. My goal is to do a vast majority of my teaching with it. Yay!
  • I moved in the middle of a hurricane. We're talking soggy boxes and all. The Boy was super generous and paid for movers, so I didn't get that wet. Those poor movers did, though. And, did you know they strapped on my dresser (drawers and all!) on their back and carried it up and down stairs? I was impressed. Movers definitely made it 100x easier.
  • Mommy came to visit. Moving with Mommy made things 10x easier-- she helped box up, unpack, rearrange, and decorate. Aren't Mommies wonderful?
  • We had two days off this week due to power outages (Thank you, Irene!) and I was not affected, so the two days off were fun-filled with the roomie.
  • Roomie has a puppy. Puppies are the devil. Of that I'm sure. Remind me why I thought this was a good idea?! For the love of everything holy, if I have to hear wrestle mania all evening, I'm might just jump off a cliff. Fortunately Zoey grows tired of the playing and whips the little pup into shape.
  • Speaking of whipping into shape, I just looked up and Zoey was...well... uh... riding the pup. Oi vey.
Now I'm off to prepare lessons for tomorrow-- of course all of my plans have to be updated with the new addition to the classroom!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

{Hurricane Irene}

Wow.. an earthquake and a hurricane in the same week? Phew. I'm exhausted. All that worrying, eating, and oh yeah! moving (in a hurricane!) has made me exhausted.

Lots to report about the aforementioned topics, but I think I have approximately 383 more boxes to unpack.

I'll check in tomorrow! For now, we're all safe and moved in.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Necessity is the Mother of all Inventions...

What do you do when a student is expecting candles on his birthday cake and you know the school rules explicitly state no fires in the school? Oh and it's about 5 minutes before you're beginning the birthday celebration that he's been talking about all.stinkin'.day?

You improvise, of course. 



Yeah. That's a birthday cake. With a K'nex candle stick and an index card flame.

He totally dug it. "Blew" it out and everything.

I love when you can trick teach kids a lesson in life.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

First Day Jitters are More than just a Shake..

How about an earthquake on the first day? Nothing like getting the *jitters* out of the way early!

In case you haven't heard, an earthquake hit Mineral, VA which is about 90 miles from DC. We heard loud noises and began to shake around 1:50 pm.

Let's just say... the emergency plans? They don't go quite right in an emergency and we certainly hadn't been prepared for what to do in an earthquake. We evacuated for about an hour, then were released to go back in. It made for quite an adventurous first day, that's for sure. Attempting to get kids to do any work after something like that is no small task.

Here's to an uneventful second day!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Meet the Teacher Monday!

Blog Hoppin' is hosting Teacher Week 2011! So hop on over and link up to tell us all a little about yourself!

The Boy and me in Vegas
A bit about me...
The kids call me Ms. L, but you can call me Lori. I teach K-2 in a self-contained classroom for students with emotional impairments. This blog started out as an online diary and has sort of evolved into this mish mash of things, including my adventures in teaching. I'm hoping to add to it a bit and begin sharing ideas because I LOVE when all of my bloggy friends share their ideas. So I'm  not really a teacher blogger, but I'm a blogger that teaches. I hail from the Midwest (the best place in the US) and hope to someday end up back there. For now, you can find me in the metro DC area.

How long have you been teaching?
This is my sixth year teaching! I can't even believe it. I started out doing special education resource (pull out/push in/co-teaching) for two years in the upper grades. When I first moved here, though, I did a long term sub job in my current school and I fell in love with the school and the elements of a self-contained classroom (it combines my passion for special education and all the perks of a general education classroom), so after two years I moved to my current position. I absolutely LOVE working with the little ones.

You might not know...
I'm obsessed with office supplies, specifically post-it notes and sharpies. I use them for EVERYTHING. I especially love a brand new package of post-its and sharpies. Especially a brand new fresh-tipped sharpie. In addition to my post-it note love, I also enjoy paper clips. Someone recently posted about a paper clip in the shape of Michigan. I begged and pleaded to get them to send me it... but they wouldn't. So I'm on the hunt for the mitten-shaped paper clip.

What are you looking most forward to this school year?
Hmmmm... every year is so different, but I'm really looking forward to all of the growth in my kiddos. I know it's so cliche. But this batch of little ones were only with me for a few months last year, so I'm really looking forward to seeing the growth they make after a full year in our program and with me. There is SO much growth academically and socially in K-2, so I'm excited to watch them blossom!
What do you need to improve?

Time management, for sure! I'm social by nature and I currently live alone, so I often find myself talking during my planning time instead of working. Naturally, that means I'm working late and on the weekends. Because I'm making a vow this year to live life a little more, I'm going to get my stuff done at work so I can take less home. I'm sure there has to be a happy medium!

I've also made a personal goal to live a clutter-free lifestyle. If I don't use it, it's gone. Thankfully my teaching assistant is on board (she made me throw out almost 4 trash cans full of STUFF) and will be gently reminding me to use it or get rid of it.

What teaching supplies can you *not* live without?
Post-it Notes, sharpies, and my Diet Pepsi. Seriously, they all three get me through the day. My heart also skips a beat for a box of brand new markers because I love writing in fun fonts and a new marker is always the best for that.


Head on over to Blog Hoppin' to link up!









Sunday, August 21, 2011

{random}

So much is swirling in my mind, so that means you're stuck with bullets.

  • Today is my last Sunday without the Sunday Blues. We have tomorrow off then we start back with kids on Tuesday. The next few weeks are going to be b.u.s.y. with school and moving.
  • Mommy comes on Thursday. She's going to help with the move. While I'm glad she's coming, I'm sad we're going to be so busy while she's here.
  • I have the cutest niece in the entire world. Miss Stella is 6 months old and absolutely amazing. I may have spoiled her rotten this weekend. Her mom is the daughter of my M.O.M.and she lives in DC, meaning I get to have slumber parties with her whenever I like. Her mommy loves it because I get to spoil her while she gets things done and Zoey loves it because she has a fenced in yard. I may or may not have taken two REALLY long naps with her cuddled up in my arms.
  • Having a beautiful niece means my ovaries scream almost every day about why they haven't had the chance to get in on the fun. While babies are totally cute and adorable, I'm not quite ready to be blessed with one. Some day, hopefully.
  • My cousin, S, just got engaged! This means lots of extra trips home and wedding planning galore. I'm so excited for her and I she has honored me with the title of maid of honor. Let's just pray she doesn't dress us in horrible dresses. I already warned her about the wrath of moi should she decide on something god awful. She's a pretty trendy lady, so I don't think I'll have to worry about that.
  • I'm moving in less than a week and I'm SO excited to have a town house with a roommate. Hello slumber parties, wine nights, and a built in dog sitter. It's been a while since I've lived with a roommate, so here's to hoping I remember how to be on my best behavior.
Off to catch up on my DVR and enjoy my last Sunday of the summer... What are YOU doing on this spectacular Sunday?!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Back To School

I've been a busy little bee this week! Getting my classroom set up is always one of my favorite things to do. I love to see the potential in every nook and cranny. I love to dream about all of the learning that will be done in each of the areas. I also LOVE when everything is so neat and orderly.

My new assistant is super awesome. She is totally on board with my style and loves a neat room. I'm really thinking she's going to make me stick to my mantra of less clutter makes a happy classroom.

In other news, I have only two students. I know all of you teachers out there are drooling over this, but I'm actually getting a little nervous. I shouldn't utter these words, but.. what if I get bored? Two kids and two adults. It's a 1:1 ratio. Oi vey. Somehow I think my little one will keep me on my toes...

Happy Back to School!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I know, I know..

I've been all sorts of MIA lately. I could offer up excuses, but they would be just that. Excuses. Let's just say I was off gallivanting and enjoying the last precious moments of summer before school started. I'll let you use your imagination.

Now? I'll be focused. I'm back to school which basically means I'll actually have something humorous to talk about, as opposed to blogging about Lil' Miss Zoey. I mean, she's cool and all. But... I doubt that's what you came here for.

Anywho..

While I've been away, I had a college pal visit, I traveled to Michigan (and fell in love all over again with Michigan summers), and began preparing myself for the school year.

Oh, and? I perfected the faux braid courtesy of Caroline. I've rocked it every.single.day since stumbling upon her tutorial. A super easy AND cute new little do? Yes, please.

I'm totally going to get better about posting what I wear each week (mainly to keep myself accountable) and spicing things up a bit around here. However, that won't happen until after the big move. So, for the next few weeks, you'll have to use your imagination. Assume I'm wearing my signature black/gray/white or teal and I'm probably rockin' a faux braid and a pony. Cause that's how I roll.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

My Other Mother

aka: MOM

So.. I have another mother. Not in a "I have two mommies" kind of way. Except it kind of is.

It all started about 11 years ago. I was dating my high school sweetheart. His mother is a wonderful woman. Being the wonderful woman that she was, she attended my high school sporting events and because of that she and my mom became fast friends. They were pretty good friends and vowed that no matter what happened between their children, they would still be friends.

Then her son and I broke up.

They were still friends. I hated her son. And her daughter (who hated me just as much, for the record!). But I still liked her. So she was a part of the family. When I grew up and moved away, my parents still joined her family on holidays, and she joined our family on vacations. And I totally ended up liking her children again. In fact, her daughter moved to DC and I get to have sleepovers with her like we're in middle school. Except we're all grown up and responsible and shiz.

Mommy and MOM remained best friends. They were there for each other through everything.. a divorce, a child's divorce, my grandmother falling ill, grandpa passing, and my dad passing. And plenty of happy times, too.

Once the dust settled after my dad passed away, Mommy just couldn't stand living alone (she had never done it, ladies. Can you imagine?!) and invited MOM to move in.

Now my two mommies live together.

And I sound like a weirdo when I begin telling a story about my moms. People take that way differently than it's intended,. Then I feel all awkward because I'm all like, "No! My mom has a roommate. Er.. housemate. Her bestie. My dad died and she moved in.. wait, they're not lesbians. Not that there's anything wrong with lesbians, but they aren't lesbians. They are just roommates who happen to be best friends."

It makes for a really awkward convo.

But yes, I'm Lori and I have two mommies. You should totally be jealz because moms are the best and I have two of them.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The First Time

The first time... It's super awkward. You don't really know how it's going to start or end. Butterflies are a'fluttering and your palms are sweaty. Words kind of escape you. Figuring out the right thing to say is tough.

Then you do it.

And you feel better.

I totally did it.

I posted for the first time on a blog I've been stalking for quite some time. Her name is Vodka Mom. She's hilarious and has no idea that I stalk her. But I totally have a girl crush on her and have always wanted to comment, but never knew what to say.

Then I did it. And I felt better.

{I heart good news}

Today started off a little rough... to the point that I was afraid I wasn't going to make it. Let's just say it's not always fun being the boss. Then I had a meeting with my team for next school year-- we're trying to get ahead of the game. That meeting was met with some resistance, some panic, and utter chaos.

Then I headed home to clean. I'm expecting company this weekend-- a college pal that I haven't seen in 6 years. Man did we ever have some crazy times in college. Stories I'm sure we'll relive this weekend.

But the best part? I finalized the plans for my new place. Complete with a roommate that I adore. I'm cutting my monthly rent by $150 plus splitting utilities. Can I get a woohoo?

Then, Mommy and I finalized plans for me to go home.

Then she offered to come out to help me move. (I'll take another woohoo on that one! Mommy gets to visit and I get help moving. Yes, please!)

Then we figured out a way for my other mother (remind me to tell you about that..) to ride home with me on my trip back from Michigan. Meaning I have another passenger besides Zoey. You know, one who will actually talk back to me and engage in some conversation. That will make the 10 hour drive totally bearable. Plus, Zoey will get a lap to sit on that isn't in the driver's seat. (I'm sure the other drivers on the road will appreciate that one)

An all around good day, I'd say.

Plus tomorrow is the last day of Summer School. Meaning my summer actually starts tomorrow. For two weeks. But I'll take it.

Monday, July 25, 2011

{lacking}

Someone has a case of the Monday's.
 
I'll give you one guess.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

New ink...

New tattoo to honor my dad. His birthday in Roman numerals. The geranium was touched up and the h was added in honor of my grandma.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Foul Mouth

I pink puffy heart routines. Love them with a burning passion. (I mean, I pick out my outfit {jewelry included} the night before-- I'm a train wreck) My day goes smoothly because everything I do is in the same order.
 
My AM routine includes: alarm, Zoey outside, feed Zoey, shower, lay in bed and look at facebook, get up, blow-dry my hair, do my make up, do my hair, clothes on, take Zoey out to do her business, brush my teeth, grab my breakfast/lunch, out the door.
 
Since I dropped the little munchkin off to frolic with her friends, while I frolick with my family back in MI, my morning routine was sort of out of whack. And by sort of, I mean really.
 
You can imagine my surprise when I realized (halfway to work) that I forgot to brush my teeth.
 
Seriously, Lori? Seriously.
 
Thank goodness I carry a toothbrush and toothpaste in my purse. Just in case.

Perfect Proposal...

Before you go and get any ideas, I AM NOT in the market for being proposed to. In fact, it's a non-issue at this point. The Boy and I are happy with things the way they are.
 
With that being said, I've been watching way too much television this summer (that's what happens when you work 1/2 days AND there's a holiday weekend, plus you're dog sitting kind of in the middle of nowhere) and much of that television included romantic comedies and "Say Yes to the Dress!". So weddings are on the brain.
 
So I've been thinking about ironic and/or crazy proposals.
 
Let me preface this by saying, I have a warped sense of humor and some of these are not my idea of the perfect proposal, just sayin'.
 
For the computer saavy bride-to-be...
A facebook proposal that has status updates or comments that say Will. You. Marry. Me? Because we all know it ain't true if it ain't on facebook!
 
For the wine lover...
A wine tasting that has four bottles of wine and the labels are turned around. When the lady or gent turns the bottles around to see what the wine is, the words are printed on each bottle.
 
And... that's all I can think of. I'll come up with more. Promise.
 
Until then? Send me some of yours!
 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Blonde Moments...

The hair is usually assisted with some color every 3 months or so, but those roots? They're deep. I follow in my mother's footsteps for being a wee bit...er... how do I say this? Air-headed. Forgetful. Absent-minded. And certainly naive.
 
You get the picture. I'm a bit of a flake sometimes. It's totally accidental and people still love me. Sometimes they think it's rather endearing.
 
Let me give you some examples... lest you think I'm exaggerating.
 
While dog sitting, I notice a rather unusual looking wooden "thing" in the yard. Being curious, I stuck my head right into the opening. BAM! Bird flew out. I hate birds. Deathly afraid of them. Screaming ensues.. One may wonder, "Lori.. if you saw a wooden thing with a hole in the yard, wouldn't you instantly assume birdhouse? I mean, really?!"
 
While in Italy there was an old well in the winery. They casually mention they've been using the well for centuries. When nobody was looking, I touched it. Water went everywhere. I screamed. The Boy asked me why I touched it and I obviously answered, "Because I wanted to see if it worked!" He rolled his eyes and was all like, "Remember when they said they've been using it for centuries? That means they still uses it and it still works!" Oops.
 
I'm noticing a trend. I'm curious as hell-o and it seems to get the best of me.
 
And I scream. A lot.
 
I'm just like my mother. ::eye roll::

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Yay or nay?

Can I wear this hairstyle to work and still be taken seriously as the boss? Keep in mind, I'm a late twenties teacher in charge of 20 other teachers and assistants, most of whom are older than me. I have interaction with kids and parents, too.

Oh and at least two people have commented that I'm young. But, I assure you I'm pretty profesh when it comes to dealing with others and I know my stuff.

Thoughts? Cute, yes? But classy enough to play the part of boss? Help!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Peeing In Private is SO Overrated

Or, why it's so much fun to hang out with three needy dogs.
 
I'm a "pee with the door open kinda gal". Zoey? She minds the boundaries, most of the time. Except, when she doesn't and she's all in my face, wagging her tail, "Mommy I must get some lovin' from you RIGHT now!" and I oblige because, let's be real, she's spoiled rotten.
 
Imagine my surprise when I'm dog/house sitting and rather than one needy little bugger, I have three. Not a problem, right? Wrong. I only have 2 hands. Oh and let's remember, I'm trying to do my biz-naz. Let's add in there a few nights of fireworks (two dogs are shaking and barking at every.single.firework) and a night of bad storms.
 
So, I've decided peeing in private is so overrated. It's way more fun to pee with three dogs watching me.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Stateside

I'm back stateside and I'm exhausted. Our last day of travels involved 4 different modes of transportation all over the course of 24 hours. Add that to the jet lag and the beginning of summer school and you get pure exhaustion.

So exhausted that I tripped UP the stairs today at work. Twice. I laughed really hard because, really, there is nothing funnier than someone tripping. Even if it's you.

Pictures and a recap... soon. Pinky swear.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

End of the Year Bliss...

School is out for the summer! Here's how I celebrated my first day of summer-- pedicure and Hooters. I know, a strange combination. One of the girls I went with to get my tootsies dolled up for Italy is pregnant and loves wings. Naturally Hooters was the answer! You should have seen the stares we got. Three ladies walking in to Hooters, without men. I loved it.

Next up? A trip to the board of education to pick up my IEP's for summer school and finish my last minute errands before leaving for ITALY!

Ya'll! I'm going to be in Italy in two days. We're doing a whirlwind trip of Rome, Capri, and Venice. Complete with a catacomb/Vatican tour, swimming in the Mediterranean, and a Venetian sailboat cruise. Not only will I be in a beautiful place, I'm going with the Boy and a couple friend of ours. I love the wife we're going with, so I am certain it will be a great trip. I promise pictures upon my return!

Friday, June 10, 2011

I'm still here... I promise.

Just having a hard time finding myself under this stress of the end of the school year. Seems I'm being pulled in a million directions during the day.
 
On a brighter note, we're taking the kids roller skating today. This should be a lot of fun. If nothing else, I'm sure a few chuckles because it's always funny watching people fall. Even if they are children.
 
I'm going to hell, for sure.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Summertime....

Lil' Woman just posted this about her summertime plans, so I thought I'd join in the fun! (And, let's be honest... I'm dragging you know what today, so I really lacked inspiration for le blog, so this works)

Here's what's going on this summer in the land o' chaos.

Rome, Italy
Well hello there, Trevi Fountain. I can't wait to see you again. The Boy and I are venturing to Italy with some of our favorite friends. We'll spend five days in Rome and three in Venice. I am SO excited to spend travel abroad again. I was lucky enough to study abroad and visited Rome on a college student's budget. This time I'll be doing it right!


(photo: mine)
Michigan
It won't be nearly as glamorous as Italy, but it will include lots of Mom time (which I desperately need) and cousin time. It will also include friend time. But mainly, I'll be in Michigan. Surrounded by friends and family who all have the same accent I do. The people who love me unconditionally. I'll also get a chance to see my puppy, Leila. And I'm CERTAIN it will involve the lake, or pool.


(photo: mine)
Preparing for Next Year...
Every teacher does it. We're getting a new reading program (Treasures? Anyone out there have any ideas for me?) so I want to get a leg up on planning my units and themes. Plus, it actually keeps me sane.

Other Various Adventures
I don't have a lot planned and I'm okay with that. I have a few inservices planned, and I'll be working with our summer school program in an admin capacity. So I'll be busy for most of the month of July. Except on Fridays. Thank goodness. I do know I'll be kayaking at least once, in addition to white water tubing (Sara-- I'll miss you on this adventure!), and a wine tasting.

Not that I'm counting, but there are only 9 days left of school.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Pants on the Ground

One of my little guys had his pants hanging down below his drawers today, so a classmate reminded him to pull up his pants before they fell to the ground.
 
New Punk broke out into song, "Pants on the ground! Pants on the ground! You look like a fool with your pants on the ground!" courtesy of American Idol.
 
My, my. This is what I deal with.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Blah.

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed.
 
It's been raining for approximately 38 days straight.
 
There are 20 days left of school.
 
It's only Thursday and I totally thought it was Friday.
 
Oh, and my kids are a hot mess.
 
Even I can't fake it today...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Vegas Recap

I had really grand plans for this recap a few weeks ago. Then I looked at my pictures and realized The Boy and I take ridiculous pictures, both of one another and together. We really don't do anything normal. So of course our pictures aren't normal.

Instead of doing the really cute pictures (they are, um, limited) I'll do some of the outtakes.



Tubing on Lake Havasu. This isn't me, it's actually The Boy's mom. Yes, she's a 60 something woman tubing and having the time of her life. The Boy and I tubed after her, together. As in tandem. It was his first time. Big mistake. Tubing tandem for your first time is really tough and he did not do his part to keep us from tipping. Boo.

We drove to the Desert Bar. It's literally in the middle of nowhere. And it was closed. Ha.


A "pit" stop at the Parker Dam. Yes, The Boy took this wonderful picture of me coming out of the outhouse. nice.

Prom Picture in front of the pretty pink crystals in some casino.

The Boy's parents renewed their vows while we were there. His mom specifically stated, "No Elvis!" and sure enough.. he was there. He didn't marry them, but it was fun to see her freak.

Waiting for the vow renewal. Yes, we're that cheesy. But oh so adorable. Right?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

My Life in Tattoos

I was inspired by Heather over at Live. Love.Laugh and then by Fail Blog's Ugliest Tattoos to share my tattoos and the inspiration behind them.

Tattoo #1: Right Hip
{butterfly}
. When I turned 18, two of my girlfriends and I went to get tattoos. We all wanted them in the same place, but ended up getting different colors and they got theirs on their left hip. It was pink and purple, but it's really faded. This is almost 10 years old. Wow!

Tattoo #2/#3: Right Foot
{cursive L}
This was originally a black line cross, but I didn't like that it looked like a prison tattoo so I decided to spruce it up a bit. I covered it up with a cursive L for my first name. I love that it's small, but delicate and in a pretty neat location. I always think that I don't want my tattoos to show if I was in a wedding dress. This accents heels very nicely and looks great with sandals.

Tattoo #4: Left rib cage
{geranium}
I have a few OCD tendencies and couldn't stand that my left side was bare. When I thought about what I wanted and where to get it, I was inspired by one of Rihanna's tattoos on her rib cage. The geranium is inspired by my grandfather. We used to travel to Mackinac Island in the summer and geraniums are all over the Grand Hotel. We used to talk about how lovely the red flower looked against the white hotel. He passed away 7 years ago and I knew I wanted to honor him in a meaningful way. This is my most recent tattoo, from 3 years ago.

Because tattoos are addicting (just ask anyone who has one-- most of them will admit they want more) and because I have lost two other loved ones, I am planning on getting something in their honor. For my grandmother, I am thinking another geranium. But, I'm a little worried I'll look like I have a bouquet on my ribs. For my dad, I am going to get his birth date in roman numerals going down my rib cage. Again, I want something meaningful, but also want some balance. I think the masculinity of the roman numerals and the softness of the location will look very nice. And the vertical will look pretty cool going down my ribcage.

What about you ladies out there? Are you tatted up? If so, please share!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Dedication

You know you're dedicated when you offer to take a child's pants home to re-stitch the seam in his pants.

Or you're tired of hearing his friends say, "You have a hole in your pants! I can see your under roos!"

And, on a completely related note... when you hear a child say, "My bottom hurts. My drawers are too tight." You might have a hard time hiding your laughter. Just sayin'.

22 more days. I CAN do this.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Oh My..

Two of my little boys were playing Rapunzel at recess. They pretended they had long hair and everything.
 
Oh my.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Faith

By Patrick Overton

When you walk to the edge of all the light you have
and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown,
you must believe that one of two things will happen:

There will be something solid for you to stand upon,
or, you will be taught how to fly



Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Things I Miss About Having 2 Functional Hands...

Or, Why You're Stuck Listening (Reading?) to Me Whine....
 
Typing? A tricky feat when you're stuck with a piece of metal taped to your finger and then that finger taped to the one next to it.
 
Showering? Ha. Forget scrubbing your scalp. You'll just be stuck hoping you don't have greasy hair. You'll also forget that you have a finger that is out of commission and begin to use it. Then you'll scream in pain and pray that your neighbor doesn't barge in to check to see if you're okay.
 
Doing my hair? Again. A pain. I challenge you to try and put in a pony tail without the use of your ring and middle finger. Let me know how that goes for you. Mmmmmkay?
 
Using my middle finger. I can no longer flip the bird to those drivers that irritate me. I suppose that's probably a bonus for them.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

It's the Simple Pleasures...

Everything is better in pink (and green!).

Everything is better with polka dots.

And we ALL know everything tastes better with a straw.

Behold... the pink and green polka dot Tervis Tumbler with a straw.


I'm slightly obsessed. I may have already filled it twice. I think this is totally going to help with ensuring I a) drink more water and b) refrain from drinking full sugar pop, which will in turn help with losing some weight.

Yes, I'm going to try to lose weight. Since starting one of my medications I've gained approximately 18 pounds. It's amazing how fixing one problem creates a new one. So.. I've teamed up with Mommy Dearest and we're making a healthy competition out of it (I totally do better at anything that involves winning-- and we're not talking about "oh I won because I lost weight", we're talking prizes AND bragging rights) so hopefully that helps. Any healthy suggestions (besides eating healthy and exercising) would be greatly appreciated.

In addition to the kick arse Tervis Tumbler, I got a new duvet, towels, and some hangers. We're talking all matching hangers. Be still my heart...

What are YOUR simple pleasures?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Oi Vey.

I meant to post vacay pictures tonight, but I broke my finger playing touch football. The hunt and peck method of typing is annoying, so I'm going to have to hold off on the vacation recap.

If you're wondering, I didn't score the TD, but I did score one later. Broken finger and all.

I'm that tough.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Update... List Style

Okay, okay.. I've been MIA. My bad. I was finishing grad class and then went on vacay. I promise vacay recaps either this weekend or Monday. Depends what the weekend holds.
 
Updates/Things I've learned...
  • It's no fun to seek shelter from a tornado with 20 students who are emotionally disturbed/ADHD/anxious.
  • Puking in an airplane bathroom? Not so fun.
  • Lake Havasu is really neat.
  • The bridge built next to Hoover Dam? It's tall. And causes panic attacks when you're afraid of bridges.
  • Kids who scream "F*ck You!" on the first day you meet them may put you through the ringer.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Saturday Fun

Riding along with the boy tonight while he works... this should be interesting. He's a police officer in a not so nice area.

Don't worry, I warned my mom and updated my insurance policy.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Chills...

Sometimes things in life have a funny way of working out.

Today, as I was driving to grad class talking on the phone to my mom (don't tell anyone, it's against the law to drive without a hands free device.. and I totally was not rocking the bluetooth. Oops.) she was explaining the options for the headstone for my dad. We were discussing options, talking about what he would have wanted and what we wanted to celebrate his life. As we were doing so, my mom made mention to the Old English D for the Detroit Tigers or a lighthouse. Both were things my dad loved very much.

I was driving right next to Baltimore-Washington International when a plane literally almost landed right in front of me. I *may* have screamed because I was afraid it was going to miss the runway and land on my head. Of course, it wasn't going to. I'm just a little dramatic like that.

This is what almost landed on me.


If you look closely, near the tail/jet you will see the Old English D with the tiger in it.

Call it fate, call it divine intervention, call it God... whatever it was, it was a sign. It sent chills through my entire body.

Don't worry, Dad. We got the D. We wouldn't have done it any other way.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Foldables

I went to a fan-FREAKING-tastic workshop today about Dinah Zike's foldables. We're getting the Treasures reading program in the fall, and apparently it's loaded with foldables.

I'm SUPER excited to use more of these in the classroom. I already use some of them, but these were great reminders/refreshers about how to use them across all content areas and how to use them for assessments. I came across this website for foldables in math (it's free, go there... like now!) and you all know how crazy I am about math AND hands-on learning activities. I'm so pumped to add this to my repertoire.

I promise I'll take some pictures this week of how I use them and I'll post them on here. Be on the look-out, Teacher Friends!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Responsibility Sucks..

Instead of enjoying the 80 degree weather? I'll be at school, doing grad work. Mainly because I know if I go home, I'll get nothing done. So at least I'm being responsible, even though I don't want to be.
 
wah.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

An Open Letter

Dear Grad Classes,

You can go away anytime now. I'm tired of you and I just want to be done. Remember how we had a great relationship last semester? Well now that you've doubled, I kind of hate you.

Sincerely,
ME
_________________________________________________________

Dear Self,

Never take two grad classes at once, ever again. I know you think it's a good idea {and, in theory, it is} but it's not practical. Especially in the spring.

This is your warning. Do it again and I'll have to hurt you.

Sincerely,
ME

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Keeping my head above water...

Or maybe not.
 
I'm super-slammed at work, super-slammed with grad-classes, and I'm just an all around barrel o' fun {sarcasm}.
 
Two new friends joined the circus, so I'm up to 5. One Kindy friend, one firstie, and three second graders. That's three grade levels. Which is 3x the stress, 3x the work, and 1/3 of the time to do all of my teaching in {because it's split up among three grades}.
 
But.. there is a silver lining. In 16 days I'm leaving for Lake Havasu/Las Vegas. Can I get an Amen?

Monday, March 28, 2011

Indoor Recess...

Indoor recess is always a good time for overhearing snippets of conversation when those kiddos are in their element and think their teacher isn't listening. (Word to the wise, kiddos. I'm actually listening MORE because this is when you normally get into lots of trouble)
 
Lil' Miss Diva: "Who wants to play house with me?!"
 
Lil' Man: "I will. I'll be the dad. What are you going to be?"
 
Lil' Miss Diva: "I'll be the cat!"
 
Lil' Man: "Ugh. I don't want to be the lonely old cat man. That's dumb. Be like a dog. A dog is way more manly."
 
__________________________________________________
 
Lil' Miss Diva: "I'm having trouble with a FRRRRRRRRRRRiend!"
 
Me: "Oh yeah? What's that?"
 
Lil' Miss Diva: "He knocked down my stupid dog house!"
 
Lil' Man: "I saw what happened. I don't think Lil Big Man did it on purpose. I think Lil Big Man, the pretend dog did it. So, really.. it's not a problem with a friend. It's a problem with a make-believe dog."
 
Me: "How can we solve this?"
 
Lil' Man: "Kill the dog?"
 
__________________________________________________
 
Lil' Man: "Wow! You have a weird belly button."
 
Lil Big Man: "It's because I'm husky. Husky means big boned."

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tae Kwon What?

Overheard today...

"I know tae kwon do, so don't even think about messing with me!"

Peer response: "Oh yeah? You know tae kwon do? Well I know tae kwhoop your @$$!"

OMFG TMI

Dears Facebook Users,

I do not care that you just checked in at the gynecologists office. In fact, you've painted a mental image that has been forever burned into my brain. Thanks. I'm seeing you, the gyno, and your legs spread wide open. Guh. Spare me.

I also do not care that your child threw up on you AND you had to change an explosive diaper. Again, the mental images are haunting me.

There is such a thing as Too Much Information (TMI) and you've totally crossed that line. I will never be able to read your status updates without wondering if the diarrhea came out of your pants. Or if the gyno saw anything weird like sparkles or fairies while looking at.. well, you know.

Please stop. Before my brain becomes mush and I realize I can't go a single day without wondering about your intimate secrets.

Thanks,
Your ex facebok friend

Monday, March 21, 2011

Beware the Ides of March...

Omg. March can go away anytime now.

Gah. On top of the ticket for the toll, I also acquired a new kiddo, one more is on the way, I bumped the boys car in freaking downtown Baltimore, and locked myself out of my house.

Thank you blonde hair. Thank you.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

HELP!

Okay, Ladies. I need your help. It's a total fashion emergency. We're talking total emergency.

I'm going to Italy this summer and it's going to be warm when we're wandering around, so I'm thinking a few cotton summer dresses. Plus, I'm totally vain. I'm going with a cutie patootie friend and she's going to be rocking the cute dresses.

Disappointment is not.an.option.

So.. where's your go-to for summer dresses? Think inexpensive. I'm working with a teacher's salary. On a budget. You know, to save for that vacation.

Tolls? Psh.. Who Pays 'Em Anyway?

I may or may not have taken a wrong turn on my way back from the city today. Read: Baltimore. Said wrong turn resulted in taking the tunnel, which is, of course, with a fee. A toll. Crap.

Guess who NEVER carries cash? This girl.

See the problem?

At least the people in Baltimore are much nicer than those neighbors to the north, in PA. They totally were like, "Oh it happens all the time. Here's a ticket, call tomorrow and pay with your credit card! Drive safely." as opposed to the jerks in PA who made me pull over, wait for a manager to write up a darn ticket for me and then proceeded to tell me that I had to pay it with a check or money order. Um.. hello? Have you ever heard of plastic?

Yes, this means I've been caught twice without cash at a toll plaza.

Mom mentioned something about having cash in my wallet just in case. Where's the fun in that?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Sorting things Out

We're doing a St. Patrick's Day sorting/graphing activity with Lucky Charms (mom! I thought of you.. your favorite!) and I gave very few directions on how to complete it to let the kids figure out how they wanted to count them out. I'm so surprised to see each of them sorting in a different way.
 
One friend sorted all of them and then counted and recorded. Another friend would pick out one marshmallow kind and count and record. Then another friend went in the order they were listed and counted and sorted.
 
How cool! When we take away our demands, they come up with their own way to do it. None of which were the way I would have done it.
 
Maybe I am teaching them something!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Realization..

I've been a little sad lately. Actually, a lot sad. I kind of thought maybe I was throwing a pity party for myself and trid to tell myself to get over it.

Until I realized (at the doctor, no less..) that my past year or so has been pretty poopy. In 13 months my husband left me, I watched my grandmother die, and my Dad died very suddenly and we were forced to make tough decisions regarding his life. It was one thing after another. And each one occurred just as I thought I was getting over the previous incident.

It's okay for me to be sad. It's okay for me to have a bad day. It's even okay for me to cry. Heck, it's expected. I don't have to be a robot and I don't have to be perfect. I just have to be me. And if I'm sad, I'm allowed to be sad. I have to learn to be okay with my feelings and cut myself a little slack.

So, I'm sad. I'm sad I can't call my dad or get a hug from him. I'm sad I won't be able to watch him with his grandchildren (someday, not now obviously). And I'm really sad that my mom has to go through life without her best friend and her partner. All those things I'm sad about, she's sad about, too.

And that's okay.

We'll get through this, absolutely. And we'll be stronger because of it. But for now, it's okay to be sad.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Breaking News...

This just in.
 
I just had toilet water on my hands. Toilet water from after someone had done their business. Post-business toilet water from someone else.
 
I love my job. I love my job. I love my job. (insert tons of sarcasm, of course)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Guest Reader

Me: "Boys and girls, today we will have a special guest reader, Ms. L's friend, Officer K! He's a real, live police officer. Isn't that fun?"
 
Little Man: "Um, you have a friend who is a boy?"
 
Me: "Yes, think of all my friends in school who are boys."
 
Little Man: "But it's different. He's a man. You know what men do."
 
Me:" Uh.. let's talk about something different now. Thanks."
 
And speaking of what men do.. I have a little one who reminds me of Al Bundy (from Married with Children? Anyone remember?). Seriously, this kid picks his nose and flicks boogers all the time in the middle of my freakin' lessons. He burps and toots like it's his job. He fans his toots and shouts things like, "Maaaaaaaan! That one smells horrible!" And today? I caught him picking his behind, with his hands in his pants. Sometimes he sits with his hands in his pants, too. It's like watching a dirty old man.
 
Sweet Jesus, please save me.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Parenting 101

Parenting* (like any behavior modification/management) is all about follow through. If you're going to threaten it, you better be able to actually live up to your threats.

Which is why I'm not questioning my neighbor tonight. She threatened to throw her 8 year old son out of her house if he didn't start acting right. And she did. For approximately 5 minutes, homeboy was pounding on the door telling her he'd straighten up.

Way to go, neighbor.

You threatened, he challenged, you followed through. Nice work.

Now if you could only control his screaming at you at 9:30 at night when I'm trying to watch reality t.v., that would be greatly appreciated. Or convince my management company to do something about the thin walls..

*I'm not a parenting expert, obviously. I just calls it like I sees it.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

NYC

I'm finally coming down from my NYC high. Seriously, that place stole my heart. I wouldn't necessarily want to live there, but I did love visiting! Because I could give you a million details of the trip and I've been known to have the gift of gab, I'm going to do some pictures and give you a timeline of what we did.

Friday night, I arrived in late in the evening (after some delays, of course) looking as green as can be. Apparently the high winds and low altitude made for a bad mix for my tummy-- I was motion sick. I was so bad Jess even questioned my color. Got yelled at multiple times and genuinely wished I was back in the comfort of my own hometown. I was in so late that mommy was sleeping already.

Woke up early Saturday morning to do this...



Flying trapeze school! It was simply amazing. It was scary, challenging, and breathtaking. I loved every second of it! I even had the opportunity to do a catch-- basically, the things you see in a circus. A man on a different trapeze grabs you from your trapeze, and you swing together. Pure awesome-sauce.

Look at that! Amazing.

Saturday afternoon we wandered around, did some shopping and stopped by to check out the Statue of Liberty. I was super thrilled to see this. Jessica was, too.. but she was really cold. The winds were about 40-50 mph gusts.



That evening we wandered some more around Little Italy and ate at an amazing Italian restaurant. I believe it was Il Palazzo. I had some gnocchi. mmmmm. I heart pasta. I followed it up with some cannoli's at Ferrara's Cafe. Others enjoyed tarts, carrot cake, and chocolate cake. But I fell in love with cannoli's and what better place to enjoy them!

Afterwards, Jess and I enjoyed some drinks at the hotel bar. We attempted to solve all the world's problems.


Sunday morning, we wandered around looking for a breakfast place in Chinatown. Worst place to look for breakfast places. We found one, it was delish. It was not in Chinatown, though. We wandered some more, grabbed some scarves, jewelry, and purses.

Then we headed back to the hotel to get ready for...



Amazing. Simply Amazing. Wicked, on Broadway. Holy Batman, ya'll! I love musicals... this was simply spectacular for me. We saw the understudies for both Glenda and Alphaba, but they were amazing and I would never have known they were second best. I cried during intermission because of a mix of emotions. My dad and I had a love for musicals and I would have totally called him to explain the story and totally purchased the cd to belt out with him in the car. It was heartbreaking to realize he was gone.

After Wicked, we headed to another Italian restaurant for after show drinks and dinner with Mom, Jess, Jess's Mom, Jess's Brother, Jess's Brother's girlfriend. It was delish, as I'm sure you can imagine. Jessica and I walked around Time's Square and then headed back to the hotel.

Monday morning we woke up early and headed to a small diner to have some breakfast before we made our way to the airport. We wandered around Washington Square, took some pictures, and enjoyed one another before parting ways.


It was then we had to venture back to grab our bags and make our way to the airport. We parted ways, I had even more delays, so did Mom and Jess's Mom, but we all made it home safely. With lots of memories of a wonderful weekend full of good food, good times, lots of laughs, and great friends.