My blogging hiatus is getting out of control! But that picture above is part of the reason why. Our first child, affectionately nicknamed “Pudge” for now, is due July 30th.
Some day, hopefully soon, this will mean lots of baby project posts. But for now, this means I need to sleep more!!
I have this grey pea coat with silver buttons that I bought in 2008, before I left to study abroad in England. The buttons are a constant annoyance – the shanks are too sharp, so they cut through thread and fall off all the time.
Today I finally bought new buttons instead of sewing the old ones on again, like I’d been talking about for years, and since they didn’t have any black buttons I liked, I opted for a deep blue. They make me smile.
Well hey, everyone. I underestimated how busy November and December would be, I guess! This is my first post from my iPhone though, so maybe now that my phone is all fancy, I will post more. (HA. It’s an admirable thought though.)
Next to figure out: how do I stick photos in from my phone’s camera? Cause that would be brilliant.
And more future posts I’m promising you: pictures of two projects I’m working on. Christmas break starts in four days, so they’re coming, I promise!
Hey look, I think I figured out pictures!
Things that have caught my eye recently on Pinterest:
I think this is just brilliant for wedding showers! Then you don’t have to stick masking tape on and scribble your name with a Sharpie. (In fact, I kinda want to do this to all my Pyrex now…)
This just makes me laugh, so much. A “Chia Pet” pet costume? Awesome!!
I’ve been in search of some DIY art for our very bare living room walls… This might make the cut. Or perhaps in the bedroom? Not sure yet.
This is definitely happening soon for my living room! In shades of light and dark blue and apple green.
The only way I get through fall and winter (I HATE COLD) is because there are cute decorations to make me happy until the weather gets warm again. I just put out all my pumpkins today, and I reeeally want to make these to add to my collection!
What are you pinning?
Yeah, so life got busy. We moved. I started teaching. Tyler is officially accepted into the Air Force as an officer, and we are still jumping through hoops. Etc, etc. But, this weekend has been a wonderful time of catching up and relaxing. My kitchen is stocked with food for the first time in a month, I made a Target run, and got some crafting in.
I’ve got a few blog posts in the works, but first wanted to share my personal tips for first year teachers. I’d heard it was a killer year, and I was pretty sure I was going to die. But, I’m not dead, and actually I love it. Every day I arrive with a smile on my face. Granted, I still get way too many emails and have way too many papers on my desk to go through, but this is what works for me…
1. Clothes get laid out the night before. Yup, just like when you were a little kid. Don’t just think about it in your head – literally get the shoes/clothes/underwear/socks out and stick them somewhere. Saves me a lot of headache in the morning.
2. Be okay with random lunches. I grab a fruit, a grain, a protein, and a granola bar. If the grain and protein is a pita with cheese and nothing else, it works. It’ll get me through the day.
3. A sub told me, don’t let students get free rent in your head. They don’t think about you when they get home, so don’t think about them. That thought has made the biggest impact on me this year – yes, I still want to make great lessons and have brilliant visuals and all that, but in the long run the kids need to know the material. As long as we learned something that day, it was a success.
4. ASK. Sometimes I feel horrible because I’m having to ask questions about everything, but I’ve learned so much by being willing to ask. Everyone is happy to help, they were a first year teacher once too!
5. Laugh. Kids are hilarious! Enjoy what they say. And write it down!
6. Be willing to educate outside of the content. My health class, oh man. We get started on some random topics. This week, I taught them what the term “baby boomers” meant. Especially in special education, I’m there to help them in whatever way they need.
This is just what works for me – but it’s been the most valuable thing for making my first year a success.
Coming up… posts about my latest finds on pinterest, and another about how to throw a baby shower on a budget.
So how are you all doing? How have your August and Septembers been?
I normally don’t like poetry. I’d always dread the unit in every English class where we had to read poems and analyze them. Short stories, I’m all over those, but poems are my nemesis.
Found this one today, though, and I liked it a lot:
by Dorothy Parker
“Hope it was that tutored me,
And Love that taught me more;
And now I learn at Sorrow’s knee
The self-same lore.”
I had finally gotten out of my funk, and actually just had a busy enough two weeks that I didn’t have much time to blog. I helped out at my church’s Vacation Bible School, went on a church retreat, a vacation day at Disneyland, then I spent a busy week interviewing for two jobs. I drove 280 miles for two interviews for one teaching position, and I thought it was pretty much a sure thing. Was SO excited to finally be getting somewhere.But oh, is God teaching me to trust Him lately. A late interviewee bumped me from the top spot. I got the call yesterday that I was their second favorite candidate, but they only had one job, so they were very sorry but they had to pick the other person.
Ouch. Been at Sorrow’s knee since getting that call.
I have no idea where my life is supposed to go from here. I’ve got exactly one month from yesterday to find a job somewhere else in the Los Angeles area, otherwise we’re committed to our (not centrally located) apartment for another year, and I’ve got to find something in this area. (One of the areas hit the hardest by the recession, so openings are rare around here.) I know I should be saying that I know God has a plan for me, and this will all work out, but right now? Right now I’m mad. And hurt. And frustrated.
So, I push on. I have chinchillas to pet-sit this weekend. They are freaked out by my apartment, sadly, so I mostly watch them instead of playing with them. I designed my first quilt and got most of the pieces cut out yesterday. (Which made me realize I really need a rotary cutter!) Today we’re using movie tickets a friend gave us to go see Pirates 4. I don’t like life right now, but I push forward. I am in Sorrow, but in Sorrow I will learn.
I’ve got an interesting new project lately, to occupy my time between student teaching and a hopeful teaching position in the fall. I came in contact with a Ph.D. student who’s getting her doctorate in history and needed some help transcribing a diary. I’m a self-proclaimed professional at reading bad handwriting since my days in admissions (high school students have atrocious handwriting!!) so I offered my services. I’ve been reading and transcribing the diary all week, and just finished this morning.
It was written by a senior editor of a major magazine who lived in New York and kept a journal every day for 40 years. FORTY! I couldn’t believe it! I’m reading chunks from the 1940s and 1950s. He’s fairly well-off, has two houses, servants, a driver, a cook, parties with the rich and famous, etc. My life here in little old suburb-of-Los Angeles doesn’t have much in common with this guy, 50 years ago, across the country, and yet, I’m struck by our similarities.
Here’s someone who has everything going for him, seems to have his life all worked out, and yet he’s terribly unhappy at times. He has relationship issues, friend issues, job issues, financial issues, etc. Sometimes I get very stressed out at where my life is going – I want a family now, I really really want a job now, I want us to be settled, I’d love for us to have a house and a dog, etc. My husband feels the same way – sometimes we feel so unstable, not knowing what the future will bring, and we’re ready to be in one place for a long time with career jobs instead of placeholder jobs.
But, as sad as it was to read this diary, with all of his troubles and unhappiness, it was kind of reassuring and inspiring – it’s fine for me to want more out of life, to be excited for the next stages in our lives, but that next stage doesn’t bring magical happiness and sunshine, as evidenced by his life. Everyone, at one point or another, (and sometimes lots of points) is unhappy and dissatisfied with life. Even this guy who has an amazing job and an amazing life is unhappy. What he doesn’t seem to have is a faith – and I think that is what pulling me through these dissatisfied times. I know God’s got a plan, and I just have to be patient.
“You become great by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard that you become great in the process.”
So xkcd is this web comic, based on nerdy math science humor. My friend/former roommate got us hooked, and normally I read it, chuckle, and move on.
Today’s, however, I loved more than I usually do. Go read.
I wouldn’t put myself in the feminist camp normally, because I don’t advocate in the same way or for the same things as most outspoken feminists do. (Summary of my beliefs: I think the sexes are not created to do the same things: we have been gifted with different talents and abilities so expecting girls and guys to be equally good at all things sets both genders up for failure. Not to say that there aren’t some girls who are good at stereotypically male things. Also, be proud of what you are good at – if you are a girl who is an excellent mother and wants to stay home, there is no need to rebel against that simply because it’s “not progressive.”)
However, I went to an all girls school, and those four years there made me so staunchly pro-girl and so confident in who I am. That comic? That’s the kind of thing my teachers would have told me. They would have showed me that there are thousands of unsung female heroes, that have worked hard at what they believe in and done great things, but I am not to simply copy them – I am to be my own great person, working hard at whatever I believe in. Girls need to hear that, a lot, over and over. Heck, guys need to hear that too. And I feel like single gender/same-sex/non-coed, pick your favorite term, schools do that better than coed schools, but that’s a related topic for another post.
Either way, teachers should be like zombie Marie Curie in today’s xkcd, and I hope I am like that too. Students need to hear that they can be great in their own way, and that’s accomplished by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard that you become great in the process.