Monday, September 26, 2011

The Homework Face

I had to capture it today because I think it is so cute. Every time Z does her homework, this is the face she makes. The tongue curls out over her top lip in intense concentration. Tonight's homework was math. She had to draw the correct number of flowers in the vase. She loved it and I loved her product. She could have easily drawn identical quick flowers but she worked hard to make each vase hold a different type of flower. I didn't even knew she could visualize so many types, much less draw them.

Lesson of the day:  Stop and enjoy the little things...especially when your day has been so long that it feels like two. You'll be glad you did.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, is that you calling me AGAIN?

Oh, Monday Morning, I think we need to reevaluate our friendship.  Every week, you call way to early just to wake me up and give me a long list of things to do.  Then you come on over and overstay your welcome.  You're not acting very nice.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Poor Kitty...

This is what happens when you take the boy with you to the grocery store and the girl stays home with Daddy and convinces him join her for a tea party.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Swinging is still fun...even for grown-ups

I want one of these!

The Perks

Okay, so when you live off of one income, and it's not a very big one, you learn to make-do a LOT.  You buy cheaper stuff because even though it doesn't last as long and may not be as comfortable, you make-do because you think about all the stuff you could buy for the cost of that one more expensive item.  My clothing definitely took a hit.  I have a lot of cheap uncomfortable shoes, $5 Target holiday t-shirts, whatever clothing item I could find on deep sale (it didn't matter that I may not have absolutely love it or it didn't fit quite was the right price and I didn't have money to waste). 

But it's not just clothing, I don't think my kids know what steak tastes like.  If it's not ground meat or chicken, we don't have it in our freezer.  The occasional pork loin or roast was a splurge.  You don't go out to eat but once in a blue moon and you eat whatever is less expensive on the menu and you never order a drink because Lordy-be, they are expensive and you'd have to figure out what you could live without come the end of the pay period.  You also don't vacation unless it's going to see a family member.  We would splurge every now and then and buy a $20 pair of Reefs but when they last 5 years, it doesn't seem so big. 

I could keep going but I think you get the picture.  Our life changed drastically when we decided I would stay home and I've never regreted it.  God has always taken such good care of us and I am so thankful.  I've loved our life and I love that I know how to be frugal.  I am not tied to material items or the latest look like so many others are.

With that said, I have to's kind-of nice to have a little extra money again.  We've got a lot of saving to do after our financial crisis years ago and a lot of put-off repairs but at least we have a way to replacing the money spent again.  This might seem minor to so many but I almost felt giddy when I bought a bottle of my beloved Olay-BodyRibbons Bath Wash the other day.  I've had my eye on it for at least a year (my mom has some in her guest shower) but I wouldn't spend the $6 to buy my own.  I also have been on a quest to purge myself of cheap uncomfortable shoes.  I bought the above ones to replace some painful cheapies.  I still felt a little guilty....they weren't the cheapest, even on sale.  Oh, well, I still plan to be frugal but a little splurge every now and then is definitely a perk of the new job.

Oh, yeah, another perk...I'm on my feet so much now, I've actually lost almost 10 pounds in the last month.  Totally unexpected but totally awesome!

Friday, September 9, 2011


Please don't read if you are going to judge me or feel sorry for me.  I pray and I vent.  That's how I get past it.  This is raw honestly.

I am 100% overwhelmed these days and every part of me feels it.  I knew returning to teaching 10 years later and having my own class would be major but not quite this hard (I'm not counting that year I taught part-time.).  I think I've spend more afternoons in tears the last month than I have spent in a very long time.  Couple of notables:  1.  I was only a mom and full time teacher for 2 weeks before now.  Jonas was an infant and I basically returned the last two weeks to pack up a classroom and close out the year.  Definitely different with two kids.  My day has no end.  I go from one job to the other and many times they overlap.  2.  Kids and Parents are WAY different than they were 10 years ago.  I've heard teachers say it but I didn't really believe it until I now that I'm smack dab in the middle of it.  I really think that they are not as smart and I believe it is because of their parents.  They make excuses for their children rather than actually showing tough love, disciplining them, having high expectations, and parenting them.  Kids are meaner, ruder, cruder, amazingly disrespectful, and even less willing to figure anything out for themselves than they were 10 years ago.  They want it handed to them.  I had a parent actually tell me that her son (who doesn't pay a lick of attention) wasn't able to learn last year because his teacher got onto him so much about his behavior that it stressed him out.  WAIT A MINUTE!!!  Hello, I think maybe it was his behavior that prevented him from learning and probably a lot of other people due to the teacher had to stop so much to correct him or get him back on task. 3. I have worked in churches off and on for the last 9 years, so I am shocked by the lack of professionalism in my younger co-workers.  We're talking stuff that shouldn't be discussed, their very private and graphic personal lives (if you get what I mean), their disgust for certain students, coworkers, and jobs, and about a million other things that I've just wanted to run from.  I am shocked by some of their laziness, self centeredness, and general lack of creativity.  I am horrified to even consider that 10 years ago my coworkers that I was even remotely as immature. 4.  I feel like that first year teacher all over again.  I feel the way I felt when I first became a mom.  Teaching is definately not like other jobs.  There is never a time where you feel caught up.  There is always pressure to do more and more and more and more.  There are always demands to get this done, go to that meeting, turn this in by.  There are always papers to grade, plans to write, some new idea that someone wants implemented.   I think I blocked all that out.

It's not all bad though.  My homeroom is a handful but they certainly LOVE me. When you have kids wanting to hug you, sit right by you, tell you absolutely every detail of everything in their little lives, when they make you little paper presents on a daily basis, you can't help but love them back.  Some of them, that's the best thing I will be able to give them this year...just to love them.  So many of their home lives are screwed up and they have been hurt by their parents' problems.  I look at teaching so differently this time.  When that complete frustration with a student arises, I just think about my own babies and how much I love them.  Even the pain in the asses are somebody's baby.  I would want my kids loved even if they were a awful.  Another good thing is that I get to see Jonas a whole lot more than I have seen him during the school year since he started kinder.  I sometimes go sit down with him at lunch for a few minutes before I pick up my class.  It's nice to be so there and to get to know so much about both of my kids teachers and their daily lives.

I know it will get better.  That is the experienced teacher talking (your not so sure your first year).  I will get organized.  I will get used to working in an unchrist-like working environment (I don't have to like it to work in it).  I will be the Jesus that other see.  I will love those kids even when I'd like to give them a big spanking.  I will be a loving parent when I get home (even when I'm tired and cranky).  I will still lovingly correct my own children even when I feel like that's all I have done all day long.  I actually caught myself telling J to sit down for no reason (new habit) and had to apologize.  I will get a handle on this new life and be successful and thrive.

Just pray for me... because what I really feel is just overwhelmed, way over tired,....and my feet hurt.  I also really really miss playing with my little girl during the day and spending time with Alan.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Check out that wave!

The ladybug drew this at school this week.  I loved it!  Check out Uncle Courtney at the very top.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

No teeth and Ross' Jeep

First, Z lost her other big front tooth today.  She is quite cute and constantly giggling about how funny she sounds without her teeth.

Next, Alan is going off roading this weekend with his off roading buddies.  Here's his friend Ross' Jeep that Alan has played a big part in building over the last few years.  

It gets a big A+ from the kids.  They LOVE it!

They both want one when they "grow up."

Especially the J-man.  He's gotten to help Daddy a few times when he went to work on the Jeep at Mr. Ross'

Posted by Picasa