Sunday, August 31, 2014

cats, cats, everywhere.

Three cats sharing one couch with the humans in this house can be a little dizzying at times, but it's also kind of sweet.  The little kitten (Chewie) appears to have no idea how tormented the two elder cats are about her presence.  She follows them throughout the house, hides and attacks their passing tails, and runs out jumping at them.  Mojo and Colt really have been so patient, though.  We know we are lucky.  There's no fighting, perhaps just a hiss every now and again when space has been encroached upon a little too unexpectedly.  In all, the cats are mostly spread across the house, sleeping lazily in their own quiet spaces.

Cats just have quite the life, don't they?

Friday, August 29, 2014

Teacher Wear: Simplicity

Let's not complicate things, shall we?  Sometimes all we need is a simple dress and some slip-on ballet flats.  Especially when it's 86 degrees outside and the school's a/c isn't quite up to par yet.

Right after I got dressed this morning, my supervising teacher sent me an email, inviting me to wear jeans to class today because it's Friday.  Can I just tell you how NOT ready for jeans I am right now though?  Teachers LOVE jeans day.  I LOVE jeans day.  But just not yet.  I'm still mourning the loss of summer.  I'm going to take my time.

I'd also like to share a bit of a phone conversation I had with my college mentor the other day.  We went way off topic (as we usually do) because even though we've never met personally, we have been talking to each other every other Thursday morning for 1.5 years...we've become good friends, yes.  Anyway, she was telling me about Dressing Your Truth and right away she pegged me (having never seen me) as a "bright and animated personality #1.  She went so far as to guess that I wore bright colors because I am so "bubbly and fun."  BINGO!  So, anyway, the idea behind this Dress Your Truth program is actually very cool, especially for those who struggle with getting dressed and deciding what to wear.  It's really just about wearing clothes that accentuate your beautiful insides and that help reflect your shining personality, whatever that may be. I honestly feel that I don't struggle with what to wear (probably because I'm that bubbly, fun, whatever type), but if you feel like you could use some inspiration, you might want to click on that link and just take a peek.

No pressure though.  I think you're marvelous just the way you are.  :)

Thursday, August 28, 2014

teacher wear.

Back to student-teaching!  That means it's time to wear something other than the same jean shorts all summer.

Last night I was kind of bored, with Husband out of town and not really anything on television, so I decided to organize my closet.  I'm back to being in a classroom two/three days each week, so I thought I'd get my clothing straightened up a little, to make picking out my outfits in the mornings a little easier.  Then BAM!  I got this crazy idea to just start putting outfits together.  And so I did!  I matched tops to bottoms and hung them together.  In fact, I was able to put together 31 different outfits!  That seems a little extensive to me (it might speak something of my love for clothes just a bit), but heck...that equals me not having to think about what to wear to school until November 1st!  Sign me up!

So, I'm going to get back to blogging my teaching outfits.  I know it helps some of you out and that's reason enough to snap a few photos and write up a post.  :)  So, get ready for 31 outfits throughout the next couple of months.

Anthropologie skirt
TJ Maxx top
Target sandals

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

back to school.

The first day of school (Monday) was a killer.  I mean, it was probably harder for the kids, being that they were required to sit and listen to their teachers all day.  But, man, I was a zombie the entire day.  Thank goodness I had time for a nap.  Like two hours for a nap.  :)

Jackson (the sophomore) was the first to catch the bus.  He was up bright and early, ready to go.  No snooze button for this fellow.

McKenna (7th grade) gets to sleep in an hour later than Jackson, lucky girl.  She might have pressed snooze once.  This girl definitely knows her own style (90's chick!) and was super excited to pick out her first day outfit.  She even let me curl her hair real quick.  She was also feeling pretty sneaky because it looks like she's baring her midriff (but she's really wearing a tan tank top underneath).  

This is the first year I couldn't get Elyssa in a first day of school photo because she's all moved out and stuff, but that wonderful girl sent me a selfie from her first day back to college.  It made my day, really.  It rated up there with that nap, for sure.  :)

Nap time is over!  Today (Tuesday) was my turn to get back into the classroom to finish up my PCE student teaching tasks!  I'm in a third grade classroom this Fall, which is a totally new experience for this Early Childhood grad.  I noticed right away that third graders aren't as into their teachers as the younger students.  And they seem to have opinions about homework that they are more willing to share.  I'm going to have to win them over with my wit and charm (maybe candy too).  I am definitely learning about how teachers survive the first days/weeks of school.  If I didn't already have so much respect for teachers and all of the hard work they do, this one day would do it.  There were times when I thought, "This is where I'm supposed to be." And then a few minutes later, "How in the heck am I ever going to have my own classroom?"  

I do know this, above all other things I have learned in all my years of learning... one moment at a time.  There's no sense in worrying about things that haven't happened yet.  When the time comes, I'll be ready and I'll give attention to it then.  For now, I just focus on the tasks at hand and observe everything.  The thing about being a teacher is that it is continuous learning.  It is always changing.  That's what makes it so scary and so cool at the same time.  Today I asked a teacher (who has been teaching for 24 years) at what year the butterflies disappeared for her and she said that she still gets butterflies at the beginning of every year.  Butterflies just mean you care.  :)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

frederick, md.

So, this post is a major #latergram.  These photos happened when I took the kids to D.C. and Gettysburg back in June. Frederick, Maryland is such a cute place with a cool shopping strip.  The day we happened upon it, there was an unfortunate power outage, so many shops and restaurants were closed, but we did find a quaint, little soda/ice cream shop to stop into.  Although the ice cream was a total loss, with no electricity to keep the freezer running, we did leave with a few old fashioned bottles of pop to sip on our walk.  Not too shabby.

You know, it's just been a good summer.  We've had some fun and some much needed down time.  This weekend the cousins are visiting from Maryland and next week my parents are stopping by for two days.  It's the perfect way to end the season and start back to school.  We have so much to look forward to this Fall.  I just found out I will be finishing up my preclinical student-teaching tasks in a third grade classroom and so I am so looking forward to that experience, which will be kind of new for me.  Having a degree in Early Childhood Education and then working in a first grade room, I have much more experience with little kiddos.  Third grade is going to be a whole new ball park for me and I am so excited for the experience!  I think I'm ready.  No, I know I'm ready.

Friday, August 15, 2014

meet chewbacca. our newest, cutest family member.

We're smitten, to say the least.
Not even Mojo can resist gazing at her, or glaring, whichever.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

home again, home again, jiggity-jig.

Can we just have summer last a wee bit longer, please?  I am already beginning to see photos of other people's kids on their first day of school in my Facebook feed and, although those kids are too stinking cute, I'm not quite ready to see that stuff.  I feel like I just got into my summer groove.  It took me awhile this year, to really let summer sink in and allow myself to go with the flow.  I felt like I had to keep moving, keep traveling, keep doing home projects, keep entertaining the kids... keep doing anything to stay busy.  Now that we are back from one of the best vacations ever, I am finally chill.  I found my balance, my chi is stabilized.  But we are only 10 days from the first day of school, when we will be forced to wake up so so early, make lunches ahead of time, and study our brains out.  Will I be ready in ten days???  Will I find myself suddenly praying for school because I simply can't handle one more minute of summer?  Part of me hopes so, just so the transition doesn't hurt so bad.

Since vacation, I've been feeling so good, like really good. That's probably why people take vacations, with the goal of feeling good, but sometimes they seem to cause stress instead.  You know how that is - traveling with kids, negotiating daily plans with a group of unique individuals, spending money, making food, etc.  But I came home completely content and refreshed and just right.  This week, I've suddenly become really good at housecleaning without anger (this is like practically unheard of).  Cleaning toilets used to get me really riled up and agitated, but I've somehow made peace.  I didn't even curse once.  This happy week, I've been cheerfully scrubbing and cleaning and folding and rearranging.  If I could whistle, I'd do it! I've also become a happier driver, but probably mostly due to the fact that I'm not a minivan mom any longer (can I get a what-what).  I've been opening the sunroof of my new, hip vehicle and blasting my pop music as I drive along. Of course I'm old, so I turn down the volume whenever I reach a stoplight, but oh boy am I having fun!  After 15 years of minivans, I feel like I've been reborn. :)

In other news, I've also started looking for a kitten to adopt.  You know, to replace Elyssa.  Haha!  Elyssa cannot be replaced, of course.  I'm not even going to go into the sad, horrible story about my experience trying to adopt from Petco, but dang, there are some rude ladies working there and so we will be looking elsewhere.  The kids are being so patient, but I'd love to find one soon and check that off my list.  Promising kids a pet - how do I get myself into these situations?  Do you have a kitten you could give me?


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