Thursday, January 7, 2010

Begin funeral music, please.

I thought I was set to have this semester off from classes that I have to take. I need a break for many reasons, all of which are.... Well, most of which are very good reasons. But alas, I have to take one class. And not just any class, a 4 credit class. Now before you start razzing me with your fake boo-hoos may I remind you of some important things. I teach full time, I'm creating my own curriculum as I go, I have a church calling, which I love!, my teaching job is provided by a grant, which means much reporting has to be done, I've got two school wide art shows that will happen this semester, and various other things that are going on. So yeah, one class. I can handle that. I'm just a little nervous about what makes it a 4 credit graduate level class. I will be taking Fall 2010 off, though, So There, Graduate School gods!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A snowy, cozy day for me

I had big plans for today. A to do list as long as my arm. And now as I hear the quiet of the snow around my house I change my mind. Today, today I will curl up on my couch with a quilt and my crocheting. I will sip peppermint tea as I quietly listen to the stillness. This might be an old John Wayne day (from the '30's). It has been a wonderful Christmas holiday, but I haven't yet taken a day to just relax and enjoy. Our days have been filled with family and errands and service. Wonderful things for a day to be filled with. Today, though, needs to be a different kind of day. A day of pondering and stillness. Oh, I'll still get things done, but I'm not going to rush about today. Some might call it a lazy day, but I call it a thinking day.

(In the middle of writing those beautiful plans for my day, my tea boiled over, I found a rotten bunch of bananas we forgot to take with us on holiday, and I found something sticky on the pan I know I washed before we left. Ha, ha.... Humor and Irony make the world go round.)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

White Christmas

We were a little disappointed when we drove into Denver a few days before Christmas and there was NO SNOW. We thought we had left that behind us. Both the Dude and I grew up in snowy climates and we wanted a white Christmas. Plus Suburbia painted in brown is not a pretty sight. Then a day or two before Christmas it started to snow. A nice fluffy layer covered the earth. Ah, all was right. It was a beautiful Christmas, with everyone in the Dude's immediate family gathered to play games, take pictures of all the grandkids, talk, talk smack, and of course eat. There were only two things that marred the perfection of the time. My mother in law was upstairs in bed sick, and the grandparents couldn't make it over. They were all missed greatly.

Now, today the day after Christmas, we were planning on going and seeing the cabin they are building, but what happens again? Mom is still a little sick (sick enough to need to be hear home) and it's snowing. Ah, well. We can't have it all. Instead we are going to go to Sam's and get our exercise walking around there. Heh, heh. The sidewalks are too slippery right now to walk around here, so we're off to the concrete jungle-gym of the middle classes. And today I am grateful for that chance.

I hope, my dear reader, that you have had a wonderful Christmas, and that you were able to witness your own Christmas miracles. Our week has been full of them, but they are to special to share with the internets. What a beautiful time of year, when we can see the goodness of mankind shine through the rough edges. How grateful I am for the birth of the Savior, and how grateful I am that in our imperfections we still try to celebrate that and serve those around us.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

There's something about books and other thoughts

There is something about books that is calming to me. After a day of trying to get very excited students to concentrate on one thing and sit still, an unnatural act even for me, I run away to hide in the library. Today when I walked in the book fair was set up. Even though I can't buy all the books, and don't really want to buy any of them, it was still instantly calming. Like a breath of fresh air.

Speaking of fresh air, I was reading a book called "It's Snowing!" to the first graders today (a very calming, well written book) and at one part it says, "'Baby, smell the snow!' Baby breathes deeply." We all breathed in deeply, and my room did not smell like freshly falling snow. What a disappointment.

The other day I spelled magic with a "j". A small example of how the rest of the day went.

Today I commented on a student's artwork, "Sally, that picture is really fun!"
Sally's response, "I know."

A conversation I over heard, "This Tucan..." (Student 1)
"What's a Tucan?" said Student 2.
"It's a kind of bird." (S1)
"I know." (S2)
"Then why did you ask me?" (S1)
"I just wanted to see if you knew what it was." (S2)

These are all bits and pieces of my day that I wanted to share with you. Now it's time to do what I've been avoiding by writing this wonderful post.... Homework.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Again with the black clothes

I was doing laundry this weekend and needed to do a load of very, very dark clothes because I have some black jeans that are still in the bleeding stages. I thought, "Eh, this will be a small load. Kind of a waste, but oh, well. I don't want my other clothes to suddenly develop this strange gray haze to them." So I started separating my clothes. When all my black clothes were in the washer I peeked in just to see how small the load was. Yikes! I had a full load of all black clothes (except for 2 renegade pieces of navy blue clothing).

I think I have a lot of black in my wardrobe.... I've been trying to wear more colors lately, really I have!

Monday, November 16, 2009

The flip side

So the dude and I were discussing possible meanings for the phrase, "See you on the flip side," this morning. He claims he's never heard it before. Ironically it turned into a real life situation during my day today. No, I didn't flip over in a boat or anything drastic like that. It was much more subtle but still an important lesson.

Let me start out by saying that I have a headache. A stress headache. Brought on by--stress and a lack of belief in myself and the skills and talents I have been blessed with. I walked into my classroom today to find the temperature at 59 degrees. It only got colder from there until our wonderful custodian fixed whatever was causing the problem. The man is a saint! Needless to say I had all my morning classes in their rooms not mine. Not terribly stressful. As soon as the last morning class ended, though, things went downhill. I ran out of q-tips for the kindergartners to paint with. I couldn't find their color wheels from before, so we had to start all over. I was observed by my mentor, and got almost nothing but negative comments back. In reality I do believe the lesson went well, but I'm still trying to figure that out. ANYWAY, as we sat down to talk about it, and the negative waves started to roll the headache waves started as well. I was barely able to have enough time to set everything up. Commence the growing of the headache. And the feelings of failure.

Then my day flipped, when I read a couple of emails from one of my mothers-in-law (both belong to the Dude, don't worry) that she had sent me a couple of days ago. I hadn't had a chance to read them until then, and I'm kind of glad I didn't. Each of them contained a message that I needed to hear about enjoying life and being thankful for what we have, and the pointlessness of complaining. I still had a headache, but I no longer wanted to quit and I chose to actually look forward to the rest of my day with excitement rather than dread.

Thank you, Mum, for the flipping.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Thoughts from a few days ago

So today during a 6th grade class I mentioned The Dude.

Mrs. The Dude: so my husband blah blah blah (I can't remember what I said exactly)
6th Grader: Woa! You're married?!
Mrs. The Dude: yep. (Thinking, do you not see my wedding ring projected on to the screen larger than life almost at this exact moment? I love document cameras!)
6th Grader: you don't look old enough to be married! (Bless you, you obnoxious child you. I guess I'll forgive you for singing songs about poo out loud in my class). How old are you?
Mrs. The Dude with a wiley grin replies: Oh, I'm young!

Ha! That even tops the time we were in Seattle when I got carded, and The Dude didn't . He, he!