Finally Recess
Time to sit back and have a cup of coffee

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Meet the Teacher

Meet the Teacher was last night. It was successful and all but 1 student came. Everyone seemed to be pleased that I was there teacher or they just didn't know any better.

It was also so fun to see all my students from last year. They have all grown tremendously over the summer. One student even came by and said, "Remember how I told you I would bring you my end of the year gift next year. Well here it is." He brought me a beautiful, absolutely gorgeous necklace from New Zealand, his homeland!

30 minutes before the parents and students were to arrive I began working on the Power Point presentation that would be running over and over in my room. Luckily my teammate had made the presentation earlier but I had to change it to fit my class/picture/teaching subjects, etc. Then it wouldn't work properly. You know the drill. It did work though in the nick of the time!

2 days before Meet the Teacher we hired a 6th teacher in 4th grade. So I helped her to get her classroom set up. All the teachers pull their resources, bulletin boards, shelves, rocking chairs, etc. to make her portable look very cute. All the student teachers in the building stayed late Thursday night to help her and did an amazing job as well!

It's been a tough, tiring week. Tomorrow I have to go up and figure out what I'm going to do this week. With scheduling, decorating, Meet the Teacher, new 6th teacher, meetings, and so much more we just didn't get to that this week.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Teachers Are Back

We started off the 08-09 school year with Convocation at a large, local church. It was very inspirational. Our theme this year is "The Power of One". It goes along with Rachels Challenge. This is the program with which we teach our students good character qualities.

Our guest speaker was Patrick Henry Hughes and his father. They have been on Extreme Home Makeover, Oprah, ESPN and had many more appearances. Patrick was born without eyes and has no movement of his legs. However, he has succeeded in life. He makes all A's and B's in college. He plays the piano and trumpet beautifully. And to top it off he is in the marching band at his university.

His father pushes his wheelchair on the football field during performances and the lengthy practices that come with it. That is just one tidbit of the love this father has for his son. It was truly amazing.

We also had a ton of time to work in our classrooms today, which is not always the case. I have quite a lot of the work done so far. Quite a difference over last year when I was moving into a new classroom, new school, new grade level and couldn't move anything myself because I was so pregnant I had a baby 3 weeks later!

I just can't believe that it is already time to set the alarm clock!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

I have been wanting to do this again for so long. It is so helpful and with me going back to work tomorrow there is no better time than the present.

Monday - Spicy Italian Chicken in the Crockpot - This is super easy. You put your frozen chicken in first and cover with 1 cup Italian dressing, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/3 cup prepared mustard . It only takes 4-6 hours so Jeff is going to start this for me since he goes into work late on Mondays.

Tuesday - Briscuit in the crockpot - I still need a good recipe for this

Wednesday - Sandwiches with leftover meat

Thursday - Ducks Unlimited Dinner!!!!

Friday - Deers Steaks on the grill - Jeff's cooking

Saturday - Surely we'll have some leftovers / Spaghetti as a backup

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Fast, Fast, Fast

After Jeff got off work we went running around and did errands. I knew he wanted to mow the lawn this evening but it was getting late and starting to get dark. He was going to put it off until tomorrow but I assured him I would help him and we could get it done.

So I put the kids to bed and headed out to help. Jeff did the weed eater and I started mowing. It is really fun to mow now since Jeff got a power driven motor. I mean the big 'ol machine will get away from you if you aren't careful. My goal was to get finished with the front yard by the time he finished the weed eater in both the front and back yard.

I was going so fast and furiously that I am sure it was a sight to behold. My neighbors were probably having a hay day watching. But I was having just as much fun. And I got a ton of exercise too.

BTW, I did get the front yard mowed by the time he was ready to mow the back yard. He had to take care of the doggie's stuff too (if you know what I mean).

I have really enjoyed the swimming events during the Olympics this year. I catch myself yelling faster, faster all the time. I am usually just a gymnastics fan but this year I have been watching both sports. I haven't seen any other sports though.

Brent's 1st Haircut

My Grandma Dorothy gave Brent his first haircut last month when he was 10 months old. (the picture below is from when he was 2 months old). His hair was getting too long for me. I love his hair style because I don't have to do anything to it. So when that started to change. I knew it was time for a cut.
Check out this long mess in the back of his hair and you will know what I am talking about.

I started to get a picture of Grandma Dorothy and Brent together and wouldn't you know it, my battery died. We did take a picture with a wind up camera but I haven't gotten that picture yet.
Here is an after picture of Brent. It is really hard to tell on little boys. But what I'm finding out is, that he already needs another haircut. It's been one month. But at least I don't have to brush his hair every night and every morning and still have to deal with tons of tangles!
This sweet picture of the kids has a little story. I gave Brent a snack and Caitlyn immediately sat down and continued to give Brent one snack at a time. They sat on the floor like that for some time. It was sweet. He is growing so fast and Caitlyn is taking such good care of him (well, when she wants to!).

Friday, August 15, 2008

At the Ranch

Quack, Quack!
What are these things? Oh my goodness! I hope they don't get my toes. Or worse, my chicken nuggets. I've never seen such crazy creatures. Caitlyn did cry when I stopped the 4-wheeler to get off and find my camera which had flung out of my pocket. What? Is it too hot to sit still or were you worried that I might have lost all those cute pictures of you and your brother?

Just Brent and me on dry land. Somehow they thought we would tip the boat. I'm sure it was Brent's 23 lbs.

I really think we could have fit. What do you think?

And they only caught 2 fish and 6 lbs of pond weed.

Good times!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Little Gym

This summer we put Caitlyn into an extra curricular activity for the first time. I was shocked that my independent girl turned out to be the complete opposite.

She turned into a shy, slow moving, stand offish little girl that watched from the outside. She brought tears to my eyes as she would watch from the door and I could see all sorts of emotions go through her mind. Then I would be so proud of her as she would go into the group and show her special trick when they would ask. And I would also get so stressed and upset when she wouldn't listen to the teachers, stay with the group and kept leaving the class and coming outside to see me.

We did make a lot of progress this summer. The last 3-4 times she would walk right into class without standing at the door or having to be prodded in the class. She would do 40-55% of the class activities, stay with the class and rarely come outside to see me.

We have a lot of progress to make, like actually doing the skill the teacher is teaching and doing it correctly with some sort of coordination. Coordination! Poor girl has my genes. Jeff is going to need to start working with her now.

We've enrolled her for the fall semester too!

Here she is getting her ribbon. This last week the parents got to come in and see the kids perform and get ribbons.

I wish I could say Brent was waiting on Caitlyn to get her ribbon but this was just the only still moment of the night. He loves to watch the kids through the glass door, so the chance to touch the equipment was too much for him.

After their "performance" the kids got to show us the equipment during free time.

These last 3 pictures were taken earlier in the summer.

The have some great equipment and they do a great job with kids here.
Tonight at home with Jeff and I she did some great somersaults and she was so proud of herself.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Caitlyn Goes to the Circus

We had the opportunity to take Caitlyn to the circus last weekend and Brent actually enjoyed it also. He was really engaged, jumping up and down too. Here Caitlyn is watching a lady up high on a swaying pole doomg all sorts of crazy tricks. She loved the elephants the most and she was pretty sure there were going to be giraffes also. We had great seats, great parking, and a great time! I'm not sure if you can see in the first picture but Brent is winking at the camera!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Piles of Wood = Tons of Fun

This is really fun! A ton of work, that took weeks, actually months to put all the finishing touches on! That's what happens when you have a full time job and go, go, go all the time like my husband does. In this picture he really is working hard to put this together, the directions were very confusing.
Here's my hero. Can you figure out what it is yet?

Caitlyn was a very good helper, sometimes!

Brent took good naps and brought water when needed!

Here is the first stage of the swing set. We had a lot of fun putting it together and put the majority that Jeff is sitting on together after dark, by the light of small light and a flashlight. Very interesting, but much better than the hot weather we had endured all day. This was back in late June, so the weather wasn't as bad as now.

Here is the final product! Sorry the pictures are so dark but my children can only play on it at sunset right now because of the 107 degree weather we have been having.

See any resemblance?

Caitlyn loves everything about her new play area. She loves to "wing" high and slide and play restaurant. Last night her dad added binoculars and a wheel also.

Brent is not sure of the slide yet, but he will go down without a complaint. It is so cute to see him go down with his sister when she has her little arms wrapped around him protecting him. He absolutely loves the swing, wheel and banging on the wood!
Caitlyn will bring you anything from her pretend restaurant that you want. Too bad it's not real, or I would take her up on it most nights!
I think these two are going to have a very good time on this play set together!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Back to Scrapbooking

I did it! I made one page.

I have not scrapbooked since I moved away from my aunt in 2005. We used to get together about 1-2 times a month and scrapbook. I would get a lot done and well she didn't. But she had the most gorgeous 18 month old (at the time). I would help her by singing and dancing to the little fellow and we got along very well. Actually I hope I didn't scare him with my funky dance moves! But it is very hard to scrapbook with a little one.

Anyway, I said all of that to say this I haven't scrapped in a very long time. That means I have had 2 kids, no baby books, and tons and tons of pictures floating all over the place (mostly on my computer).

So I have gone digital. I am doing all my scrapping on Creative Memories digital scrapbooking program. I have one page done. I was really hoping to have one book completed by now but I am choosing to look at this cup as half full.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Bloglines - It will change your life

My Uncle Weldon used to say regularly, "It will change your life!" He would always try to get you to try his new favorite dish, drink, or game because it would change your life! He was so much fun. Sadly he passed away in 2003.

Today I wanted to share one of my favorite things that I think will change your life! It is bloglines. It will make your life so much easier! The concept is to go to one website and see all the blogs you like to visit. The website will you tell when the author of the blog has posted and how many times they have posted. It is a big time saver.

And what has made it even easier for me is that my sister has explained the process (which is really easy) over at her blog, at Kari's Ramblings. Check it out and say hi while your there!

Hope you like it because it will change your life!!!!