Sunday, March 27, 2016

Working on the Wedding

So besides teaching (which is a full time job and then some), I've been doing lots of wedding planning.  It's my favorite way to procrastinate grading!

(Disclaimer:  If you don't want to hear wedding plans, this is not the post for you. I've gotten some negative attitudes lately from others about my excessive wedding posts...and sorry, but I'm not sorry.  After a long, frustrating day at work, I'd rather share my latest craft project then go on some rage filled post about work frustrations.  I'd rather spread love and positivity, which means talking about wedding planning.)

Weddings are expensive (duh) and ours is no exception.  We're within our budget, but stretching out purchases is helpful.  I'm trying to save money with DIY projects (which I love doing) and couponing whenever possible.  I don't think getting something on sale is something to be ashamed of; rather, it's a badge of pride.  Having a year and a half to plan this day means I can slowly stock up on items without racking up credit card debt.  A win all around!

I'm super excited about my wedding because all my favorite people will be in the same place while I marry the love of my life.  It's such a happy time and I'm loving a long engagement.  Having time to craft all these perfect details is keeping my inner bridezilla at bay.  I've been dreaming of my wedding since I was a little girl and now it's coming together perfectly.  More besides this perfect day, I'm thrilled to get to spend the next 60 years with B.  I've got a lifetime of non-cooperation for pictures ahead of me! I'm excited to share lots of details, but I'm not giving away everything.  I want there to be surprises on my wedding day.)

It's been a few weeks since my last {wedding post} so I figured I'd provide some updates.  Apparently it's been a super productive month in terms of wedding planning!  Truly, the only frustrating thing so far was the table arrangement and that was more of a mild irritation.  This is obviously fluid because we haven't even sent out save the dates.  I just wanted to get a rough idea of where we stand.  

Here's what was accomplished in March, thanks to my mom, my maids, and my man.

1)  I met with the florist.  I picked my bouquet, my maids' bouquets, table flowers, and the boys' boutiners.  All is under the budget we set and significantly under what pinterest advised us to spend.  We're still working on the aisle decor, but my venue updated their outdoor garden by adding a fence to frame the space:

They also upgraded the bistro lighting:

And have more upgrades planned for August (new stone wall and a chandelier), a few months before our wedding. I already loved our venue, but these small touches make me love it even more.

2) I met with the photographer. She's amazing. I love her work. I sent her my pinterest board full of wedding ideas. I'm super excited for some of the shots she'll be able to catch of the wedding day.

3) I met with the photobooth people.  We added a sparkly backdrop because a black background with navy bridesmaids dresses simply won't work.  I also worked out a deal for a discount on something I'll use for our favors (it's a secret) but since I've got the time to do part of it myself, they gave me a discount.  They may have been overwhelmed by my craft idea and wanted to avoid that extra work, which is fine by me.  I'll take on my craft project, with my maids' help! 

We decided on an open photo booth, so get ready people! We're also getting digital copies of all the pictures, so that will be a great souvineer!

4) I made flower girl baskets.  I wasn't loving the premade, white generic ones at craft stores (no offense to those of you who did those).  So I bought two Easter baskets (for 70% off), fake flowers, ribbon and within an hour, made two of these:

Total cost? Under $20 for both. I'd call that a crafting win.

On a side note, when I say I made it, what I mean to say is it was a group effort:

Crooksie approves!

Plus I snagged two more large flowers to make into headbands (if that's the route I want to go).

5) Speaking of our flower girls, I asked them both.  Ravyn said yes at Kurt & Olivia's wedding on March 11th while Elsa said yes over spring break when I popped the question with a ring pop.

6) I also found and purchased their flower girl dresses.   I looked at David's Bridal and was once again disappointed.  The dresses were adorable, but there's no way they should take 4 months to make and have shipped.  The sales pressure from the employees was ridiculous and such a turn off.  I ventured to the mall and checked out Easter sales, but didn't find anything I loved.  Despite being months apart, one flower girl is a 5T and one is a 6.  This means, as I learned, one is in toddler sizes while the other is in girls.  It's hard to find matching dresses for both.  I had a few options I liked, but wasn't in love with the prices.  Sorry, but $80 for a dress is a little ridiculous.  

Luckily, I had amazing luck at Target (because obviously!).

While I'm keeping them a secret until the big day, I will share that they coordinate but aren't identical.  I figured since all of my bridesmaids were coordinating and not identical, it was fine to do this for the little girls as well.  Everyone loved them and our girls will be adorable as they skip down the aisle, passing out rose petals. 

Plus the dresses were on sale. Score!  Both were less than the cost of one at a fancy kids formal store. 

7) I've been crafting up a storm on things for the bridal shower and wedding.  I've had coupons and every store had major sales.  I love when the universe aligns to my plans!

In addition to the flower girl baskets, I made custom hangers for the girls dresses:

All aren't pictured, but I made them for my maids, my officiant, my flower girls, my mom, and my future MIL.  I don't know if she'll be getting ready with us, but I wanted her to feel included.

(These hangers will go with my bride one)

Table Decor:

And sparkly letters for my bridal shower:

Out  of respect for B, I've tried to keep the amount of glitter to a minimum at our wedding.  My shower however? Fair game!  All the glitter, lace, polka dots, and burlap I want!  He's very against mason jars as wedding decor (because we've been to lots of weddings with that), so I'm having a few at my bridal shower as a compromise.  I get that pretty rustic look, he gets to not deal with it.  Win win!

8) We also made a rough sketch of the seating chart:

Yes, I color coordinated. No, I'm not ashamed of it. Yes, Chloe helped.  Why would I get to do anything by myself?

9) I worked on our memory table.  We have tea lights (battery operated) and this sign:

I'm in the process of collecting pictures of loved ones who have moved on and framing them for a special place in the reception. I've told everyone who will have a family member honored so it doesn't shock them.  We just wanted to honor loved ones on our day.

(Print from {etsy}, frame from Marshall's) 

10) I made our card box: 

I already had a vintage crate from Ross (a few years ago), so the total cost was $5 (and an hour of my time).  I used white letters from a banner making kit (that was in the clearance aisle of Target) and painted them a soft beige color to tone down the contrast.  I used gold twine and burlap flowers, both of which I had left over from a previous craft project (but available in the bridal crafting aisle of Joann's.)  It took a few tries to get it right in terms of spacing out the letters, but nothing too strenuous.  Plus the letters and flowers are twisted on, so I can reuse the suitcase again.

11) I updated our wedding website with our hashtag (#sommasquad), flower girls (meet the kids), and hotel information because I finalized booking the block rooms.  You can view our website {here}.

12) I ordered the rest of the bridesmaid gifts.  They're all getting earrings from me to wear with their dresses, but I wanted something else too.  They're getting thematic gifts, but each is customized for them.  I'm excited!  

Here they are:

(Did you really think I'd show off the gifts?  At least the wrapping is cute!)

12) I made a sample favor, hated it, and changed my mind.  I like plan B much better!  I ordered favor tags from a super cute shop on {etsy} because while I'm all about DIY, I'm not going to handwrite 140 of these on teeny tiny cards.  The seller sent me a digital proof, I got to pick the colors, and had them at my door within days.  I love etsy (if that wasn't already obvious!).

More importantly, I wouldn't do that to my bridesmaids.  We'll have enough of an assembly line as it is, no need to add that frustration into the mix!

13) I bought my shoes! They were originally $129 (eek!) but on sale at DSW for $49.00 (way more in my budget).  They are super comfortable with a low heel...

but I still bought back up wedding flip flops, just in case.  

The best part? Thanks to my mom's coupon, these were under $5!  

14) I worked on the wedding ceremony with our officiant.  There's a Harry Potter reference. There's some sass. I love what we've decided so far in terms of verbage.

 I quickly realized that things were taking over the living room, so my type A personality got to work:

Yes, there are separate bins for each portion of the day.  Yes, they are labeled with what goes where.  Yes, there is an itemized list for our wedding coordinator of what goes where in the venue.  No, I'm not ashamed of any part of this.  Being organized is calming.  I'd rather do a bulk of the prep work now and enjoy my wedding week as it approaches.

On a side note, our district is giving us November 8th off (election day), so I'll take off Wednesday, Thursday, and the following Monday (and Tuesday) after our wedding.  We also have the entire week off for Thanksgiving for the first time, which is super exciting.  I looked at the calendar and realized I will be working 8 days during my wedding month.  That makes me feel a lot better!

Up next in terms of wedding planning?

We've got to take passport pictures at CVS and make an appointment at the post office to have our forms accepted.  I'm renewing my passport and he's applying for a brand new one.

Engagement pictures are next month.

Once we have those proofs, we'll send out save the dates.

Once we've sent out save the dates, I'll send out bridal shower invites (because it'd be weird if those came out of order.)

Order groomsmen gifts and flower girl gifts. (I've picked the stuff for the girls, I'm just waiting for my next paycheck from TpT to order more wedding stuff.)

In addition to all this planning, I made cute gifts for two fellow brides to be, an ornament for Olivia (with petals from her wedding a few weeks ago), and caught up on grading.  All while battling the never ending sinus infection!  (Seriously, it's week 3 and round 3 of drugs.  I've got the trifecta: ear, sinus, and upper respitory infections.  I've got a referral for an ENT and really ready for all these spring winds to simmer down.)

All this planning is making me want to leave education and just plan events full time!  I think my dream job involves crafting, blogging, reading, planning, and wearing yoga pants full time.  I don't have my dream job...


Monday, March 21, 2016

All's Quiet on the Blogging Front

March has been a rough month.

It started with {Reading Week}, which was hectic to say the least.  {Everything else} seemed to pile on and I even survived the {meetings}.  We're in the middle of a March Madness reading challenge with the other schools in our performance zone.  Fifth grade has been dominating the competition and advances to the final round after spring break.  To be fair, all the other grades in our school advanced to the final 3 as well...but I know I legitimately taught all other subjects as well.  I know others would skip math or writing to just give extra reading time.  I'm not okay with that, but it's maybe because we're taking our standardized tests soon.

Speaking of those, it's online this year. I'm not ready for the hours of roaming and watching them click buttons. I'm not ready for all the computer issues that will occur. I'm not ready to watch my students struggle with navigating the online tools, despite several practice rounds.

I'm really not ready for the intense pep rally that will occur the Friday after spring break.  There are matching shirts and a skit that needs to be prepared...all while you know, teaching.

We've also spent a great deal of time watching the {bald eagle cameras} from Washington DC.  Our school's mascot is an eagle, so that's how I justified the live streaming. Both baby eagles have hatched. My students got to see both parent eagles feeding the babies (and sharing a romantic meal of half of a fish carcass).  

Student behaviors continue to be a challenge.  Another theft happened in the classroom and it breaks my heart that I can't trust my students.  I put so much into my classroom (mentally, emotionally, and financially) that when this happens, it's heartbreaking.  I'm disappointed and let down by my students.  This happens far too often.
I'm on round two of antibiotics because I cannot seem to kick this sinus infection.  I'm spending the first part of spring break laying on the couch, hating nature.

What free time I do have, when I'm not resting, is being spent on wedding crafts and reading.  Perhaps some blogging will happen as well...

Sorry dear readers that all has been quiet on the blogging front. I'll try to catch up!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Springing Forward to Spring Break!

Ten days.

I have ten teaching days until spring break.  The weekend in between these last two weeks is booked with a wedding, Waffles turning one, dinner with friends, and the escape room.

If we're getting technical, I have nine and one half because field day is the Friday afternoon before spring break.  That morning I'll set aside for retesting, math games, computer practice, free writing, and independent truly, there's only nine days. 

In that nine days, in addition to teaching, I'll conquer:

-5th grade panoramic pictures (on St. Patrick's day, so there will be lots of green)

-2 different certification meetings (as of right now)

-staff meeting, committee meeting, grade level meetings, reading planning meeting

-a counseling lesson

-hosting a professional development on Discovery Education

-finishing this graduate school class

-SBAC practice testing

-progress reports (maybe?)

Oh vey.

So  when bracing myself for all of this, I think I'll spring ahead to the joys (and goals) of spring break:

1) A mini road trip to Arizona to watch one of my oldest friends get married.  Waffles will go with us, the cats will enjoy some quiet time, I'll see my best friend, and get to have family time.  Win win.

2) Bridal appointments.  I'm meeting with the potential florist, the photographer, and the photo booth company.  Hopefully I'll get to go with our officiant as she picks her dress.  Maybe wedding shoes will be found as well (wishful thinking).  I have a clear picture in my if these shoes could appear, that'd be great.

3) Doctor's appointment...but I'll treat myself to lunch afterwards!  The doctor is close to Home Goods, a mega Target, and Panera, so this will work out perfectly.

4) I'll finish Binny for Short, which is a YA novel I'm reading for Battle of the Books.  I'll make the teachers guide and matching chronological order sort, then toss it up on TpT to share.  It's been a few months since I've posted any new products (sorry guys!).

5) Supervise the instillation of the water softener (maybe?)  We are waiting to hear back on scheduling an inspection to determine which water softener we should get and hopefully this can be installed when I already have the day off of work.

6) Catching up on craft projects.  Instead of scrapbooking, I've been doing smash books for our relationship.  They're less structured and faster.  I've made a list of pictures to order, but then want to spend a few hours in my creative bubble.

7) Spend time with my future MIL.  She's caught the creative decorating bug (YAY!) and wants help shopping and redoing her living room.  This I can be on board with! I'll be introducing her to the joys of Etsy.

8) Relax.  I'll be doing my fair share of napping and Netflix watching.

But first, I must savor one day at a time.  The rest of today will be spent finishing homework, making a grocery list, cleaning, errands, and laundry.  These activities are necessary but don't fuel my soul, so I'll also be doing some coloring and give myself a pedicure.  Because you know, balance.



What I needed

As much as I love class dojo as a communication tool with families, sometimes I see when the dojo symbol pop up on my phone after hours, I get worried.  I've gotten messages as late as ten pm and as early as five am.  Granted, my phone is on vibrate and I rarely hear it during the middle of the night.

Friday night, around ten pm, my phone dinged with the class dojo message.

Hesitantly, I peeked at the message.  My mind raced with which parent was going to bring up an issue.  I worried that I missed something crucial and my night would be spent frantically texting my principal, making sure bully reports were appropriately filled out.

That wasn't the message.

It simply said:

Thank you for today. You're awesome :)

It was from a parent who is having some behavior struggles with her child.  Friday was lunch with someone you love and she wasn't able to make it on time because of her job.  The office called when we got back to lunch and asked what I'd like to do.  I know the "correct" response would be to keep him in the classroom for learning instruction, but that wasn't what I chose to do.  

Instead, I quietly told the office that he'd be having a second lunch with his mom because he needed to feel loved.  He's one of six children and understandably, sometimes feels lost in the shuffle.  He needed this one on one time with his momma, and that's what mattered.  I quietly pulled him into the hallway and explained he was headed to the office to see a special visitor.  He had the biggest smile on his face as he skipped (yes, skipped) off to see her.

He was gone about fifteen minutes, didn't miss anything urgent in the classroom, and I know it meant the world to him and his mom.

I don't expect to be reprimanded for this choice, but sometimes meeting a student's emotional needs must come before the educational ones.


Everything else

Yesterday I {shared all about Reading Week}.   I was exhausted. I still am exhausted.

Let's examine why:

1) The students have spring fever, big time.  This need for a break manifests itself in lots of interesting ways.  This week I dealt with theft (including the school police), citations, suspensions, bullying issues, depressed students, parents, vomiting, and more.  Some days, I taught from the doorway of my classroom, privately solving behavior problems in the pod while simultaneously trying to teach multiplying fractions.  I'm the queen of multi-tasking y'all.

2) I overheard a horrific car accident while at the gas station Tuesday morning.  Six cars were involved, I think a pedestrian was hit, and crunching metal is a sound I never want to hear again.  I called the police and waited for ambulances to arrive.  I got to work thirty minutes later than I planned to and just in time for a meeting I'd forgotten about.  I had fifteen minutes between the meeting and crosswalk duty to turn on my computer and set up for the day. Tuesday morning was rough.

3) The pets were naughty.  Last week went amazing with Waffles.  She didn't get into anything when we let her roam during the day.  This week was a different story.

Monday she helped herself to some files:

Including her adoption paperwork.  I guess she's ours forever.

Tuesday included altering a dining room table chair:

At least it's an old chair? 

She's just one this month, so she's not quite ready for all that freedom.  She didn't do it to be  mean. She did it because she missed us, was lonely, and I'm sure the cats were playing without her. We'll try again in a few months.

Crooksie snuck into the pantry, ripped open a bag of dog food, and helped herself to extra food.  She's not enjoying the kitty diet very much.

4) Grad School.  I'm taking a one credit course right now and assignments are due every few days.  Between now and May, I'm finishing up course work to be at masters +32 (yay) and earn a pay raise (maybe? That's still being negotiated.)

Wednesday night I spent writing a four page analysis of the text complexity of the chosen article.  I had to watch videos, read thirty something pages, and address all sorts of questions regarding the validity of the article and if it would be appropriate for close reads and thoughtful discussion by students.  Long story short, it was appropriate.  

The topic?  Dino poop.  Snag it {here} fellow teachers! It comes from the 4-5 tool kit and is free for classroom use.

5)  In addition to all the prep for reading week, we had Harney Middle School registration.  This meant we lost our prep on Thursday, but were given prep during the assembly later that day.

6) I was observed for math.  Not only was it the fourth time rescheduling (our principal is a very busy woman!), but it was after an assembly, at the end of the day (we normally do math first thing), on a Thursday, during reading week.  Naturally, as soon as my principal left, they got the concept.  Those glorious brain fireworks and light bulbs started going off...ninety seconds after she left. 

7) It was also fifth grade's turn for First Friday treats.  Each month a specific grade level does treats for the school.  I came up with the "March Munchie Madness" theme.  Ms. C took the lead on shopping (thank you teamwork), Mrs. J helped me decorate, and Mrs. H took care of clean up.  I made fake snack brackets to give everyone something fun and different to do.  We used popcorn bags that we found in our supply closet (score!) and picked up different flavors of chex mix, popcorn, m & ms, marshmellows, and cheese-its.  Perfect snack foods to munch on.  Last year we did St. Patrick's day, but since we're having a potluck on the 16th (because we have monthly potlucks), we went with something different.  I sent out an email asking for college shirts to use as decoration and we used black butcher paper to define the space:

It must have went over really well because there were no left overs!

8) Both {Jamberry} and {Younique} launched new products, so I did my best to share this info with my Facebook groups.  There's a lot of (unfair) pressure to hit certain quotas at times, especially with the launch of new goodies.  I didn't meet these goals.  But, I am excited for what came out!

 I mean, how cute are these new nail wraps?

Dinosaurs? Yes please! I can match the Dino Poop article that I'll read with my students next week.

On the make up side...tinted flavored lip balms? New foundation brush? Yes please!

But...I'm in a sales rut. I've accepted that I won't be one of those direct sales people that makes thousands of extra dollars each month, quits her real job, and wins cruises around the world.  I'm not able to devote that much time to these hobbies, but more importantly... I don't want to. I don't want to be that pushy sales woman that tells people they need this new make up product because really the underlying message is that they aren't pretty enough and need help.  I'm not that person.  I'm much more laid back about the products. Right or wrong (probably wrong in the marketing world), here's my philosophy: I like them, I use them, and if you have questions, I'm here. Want to try something? Sure, why not? I like to try before I buy too! No judgment. I may not make a lot of money with this attitude, but I also won't lose friends and will still be me.  That matters.

9) I'm behind on grading.  No, scratch that. I let a week's worth of assignments pile up because I was overwhelmed by student behaviors and now I'm paying the consequence.  Eight different tests or quizzes to grade.  That's 264 pieces of paper to look at, score, record on a spread sheet, and enter into the grade book before passing back to students. Not fun.  Progress reports go home soon, so I should be all caught up so grades reflect all the work. That's fair to families, but it's a lot of work.  In case you're a loyal reader (or new, welcome!) and aren't in education, know this:  I tend to work an extra 15 hours a week, unpaid, grading and prepping lessons.  Every single week.  There's not enough time during the daily fifty minute prep (when it's not held up by SPED meetings, grade level meetings, surprise meetings, parent meetings, or any of the other events that happen often) to get everything done.  So please stop blaming teachers for all sorts of problems.  We're doing our best. I'm doing my best. 

10) Meetings.  There were meetings with admin.  Meetings with special education (SPED) because a behavior plan needed to be tweaked.  Three of my students are now on individual behavior incentive plans.  Last month it was one.  January? None.  But..the plans are helping those students make strong behavior choices and that's ultimately the end goal.  Meetings with parents. Meetings with the police.  Meetings with the grade level.  Meetings with other teachers that I'm mentoring.  Meetings about being certified.  Meeting with coaches.  Meetings with students about cheating.  Meetings about upcoming meetings.

All my meetings were important. I get that. They just all happened to at the same time.

11) Sinus infection.  Because items 1-10 weren't enough of a struggle, my allergies became a full blown sinus infection.  On the bright side, I used the new online telemedicine option.  I called in, a doctor called me back within an hour, we had a nice chat about my mucus situation, and he confirmed I have a sinus infection.  Considering I have several a year, for as long as I can remember, I'm pretty good at self-diagnosing this.  Thirty minutes later, CVS called to let me know my antibiotics were ready for pick up.  I didn't need to go to the doctor. I didn't need to take a sick day.  Technology for the win!

Plus, Waffles brought me a toy to snuggle with:

To be fair, she tried to share with the cats first. 

But...I'm trying to focus on the positives.  We were pleased with our tax return.  B enjoys gambling (he grew up in Vegas, what do I expect?) and did well this week.  Because we're a team, we've talked about limits and what we're comfortable spending monthly.  It's not my favorite activity, but he enjoys it.  This week he hit a royal and came home with enough cash to buy a new water softener.  Thanks babe!  I've got two weddings this month, get to see my best friend, have found some cute things on Etsy, get to see my family soon, and have bridal appointments over spring break.  There's a lot happening...and that's a good thing.

Nine days until field day.  Ten days until spring break. I can do this.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Recapping Reading Week

In college, reading week was this glorious time before finals where I had no responsibilities (other than a few hours at a desk job) but to read and study for finals.

As a teacher, the concept of "reading week" is an entirely different beast.

To start with, we have a week of spirit days.   Now don't misunderstand me, I love spirit days.  I don't love the spirited attitudes that accompany these dress up days.  Because of the surplus of extra fun activities, many students (not just my own rambunctious class) were extra off task and defiant.  It made for a long and exhausting week.

Our school tends to take celebrations to the extreme, and that's okay.  The kids need to have fun in elementary school.  Our reading week activities include:

Book bingo (We get blank boards and a list of titles the week before reading week.  I had students help me fill it out.  Three books were called each morning during announcements.)

Mystery Readers (Students have to guess which staff member is reading the poem or short story aloud over the intercom.  Students submit their guesses on blue colored slips of paper.  One winner from each grade level with the correct guess wins a prize, which is usually a left over poster from the book fair.)

Spirit days (Not only did I give students points on class dojo for participating, but they got pink colored slips of paper to submit.  Once again, one winner from each grade level was chosen for a prize.)

Assemblies (Each grade level got at least one.  Ours featured a local published author who did an amazing job interacting with the kids.)

Lunch with someone you love (families are invited to bring students lunch and eat together in the courtyard.)

Guest readers (Everyone from high school students to the air force to news anchors to families came in to read picture books to the classes.  We had our principal and a fellow teacher's husband (he's in the air force) come read to us Friday afternoon.)

Read around the pod (teachers switch classrooms and read to one another).

Book picnic (Students brought blankets or towels and we read outside on Friday afternoon.  It was mid seventies and gorgeous.) 

No wonder I'm exhausted!  

Our spirit days included:

Monday: Ties & tutus day.  I borrowed an electric blue one from a friend and rocked it with jeans and an eagles shirt (our school mascot).  I had twenty minutes of playground duty, so not only did I start my day with already hitting my 10,000 steps (thanks fitbit!) but I got lots of compliments.  I should wear tutus more often!

Tuesday: Dr. Seuss day.  I snagged a solid red shirt from Target, wore jeans and the electric blue tutu again.  I didn't want to ruin my shirt, so I attached a paper plate from my classroom (a Christmas one no less!) to a lanyard.  With the help of a black sharpie, I became Thing 1.

I also had crosswalk duty.  I got a lot of questions asking if it was spirit day... I didn't really know how to respond to that one.  Do I normally look ridiculous and wear tutus on normal Tuesdays?

Wednesday: Disney day.  (Also, Marvel and Star Wars day!) This was the day Ms. C and I had our Disney themed lip sync battle for students who met their reading goals.

Can you guess which Disney princess I was?

Would it help if I said I carried around a dinglehopper (fork), yellow fish, and red lobster?

Thursday: Dress as your future self day.  Not only did I rock a Hogwarts alum shirt that I snagged at Target, but I also completely dressed another teacher.  She wanted to be Wonder Woman, so I lent her a cape, crown, shirt, and the blue tutu.  (Yes, I do just have those things laying around.)

Friday: Pajama day.  I rocked black yoga pants and an oversized pink shirt that said "I was made for taking naps."  (Another stellar Target find!)

I really failed at taking pictures this year!  

To make things fun for teachers, we were entered in a raffle for free books each time we participated.  While I didn't win, I really like and respect the intermediate teacher who did. 

Reading week was great, our librarian put a lot of hard work into every detail, but I'm really glad it's over.  It's time to get back on track with learning.


Thursday, March 3, 2016

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Marching Onward

(Apparently I was so overwhelmed I skipped the February edition of these posts.  Sorry February. Onward!)

Reading... Binny for Short. It's another YA book for Battle of the Books and the last one I'm trying to complete. 

I'm also in the middle of another graduate class (I have three that will be done by May), so when I'm not reading essays, this is occupying my time:

I like the authors, so that's helpful.  As an added bonus, I think the information will be useful and the course is all online.
Playing... a game with the online appointment maker.  We switched over our insurance and so far, I'm not impressed.  

Also playing the countdown game while I watch spring break quickly approach.  Hallelujah.

Also playing when will my tax refund arrive? We decided to be grown ups and buy a water softener.   

Watching... well, rewatching Once Upon A Time reruns on Netflix.

Trying... to be positive.  This continues to be a struggle at the present time.

Being a grown up really stinks sometimes.

Cooking... nothing.  I had a really late day (again) and we had left overs.  Thursday will be a dump meal in the crockpot.

Eating... nothing. I'm hungry, but I'm trying to avoid eating.

Drinking..water.  Lots and lots of water.

Calling... no one. I just tried the doctor and it's not their regular business hours. one.  My phone is charging.  I need a new one, but one of my students made some really poor choices this week and stole other students' phones (yes, plural) and a school iPad.  Quite frankly, I'm scared to get a new phone while the student is in my room.

Pinning... wedding ideas.  Specifically table decor and flowers....that's up next on my to do list.

Going... ignore grading for the night. Today was hard enough.

Loving...Etsy.  I've found some way cute wedding purchases there!

Hating... the uncertainty game.  Will my masters +32 be honored with a pay raise? Will the classes be released so I can take the last one at UNLV by May? Will I have to jump through hoops? Will I have to appeal the process? Will I have to join the union to have a better chance at it being approved? Is that even legal? 

(This is what I hated in January. There's still no answer.  I joined the union, I'm enrolled in three classes, and they've received my appeal.  That's all.)

Discovering... fifth grade may not be the grade for me.  That's rough to process, but there's a new crisis each day and it's getting hard to handle. 

Thinking... about bed.  At 7:30.  Today was a beast and I came home to this (chair leg):

Not a happy puppy mom.

Feeling... like I can never catch up. 

Hoping (for) easy rest of the week.

Listening (to)...B play video games.

Celebrating... progress.  Not success, just progress in the general onward direction.

Smelling... nothing. Thank you allergies.

Thanking... B for being wonderful.

Considering... trying to find a job that lets me craft things, read books, plan weddings, and drink mimosas while wearing pajamas and/or yoga pants.  Where is that job?

Starting... to realize that I can't trust everyone I work with and that's a hard truth to swallow.

Finishing... the powerpoint on Texas, which is the LAST of the fifty states.  I'm really glad to be almost done with that massive undertaking!