Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Work is love made visible.

Nov. 27- I'm thankful for the best co-workers a girl could ask for. Our job is hard.  It is stressful.  It will wear you down.  It involves many long hours for very little pay.  However, it never fails- that when I have reached the end of my rope and I'm ready to throw in the towel- I end up with a group of coworkers telling stories about children.

Kurt Vonnegut said "Laughter and tears are both responses to frustration and exhaustion.  I myself prefer to laugh, since there is less cleaning up to do afterward."  For me, laughter has healing properties.  After an alignment meeting with Pre-K teachers at my school, we had an impromptu story circle.  You know, one of those things where everyone stands in a circle and tries to outdo everyone else's story?  It was great!  I think my favorite story was the parent who brought in a Walmart gift card and told the teacher there wasn't any money on it, she just wanted her to have the card.  Like for her collection?  So she can sell it on Ebay this summer as a collector's item?  And that was from a grown-up!

So today, I am thankful for coworkers.  They are people who live my life with me everyday.  It is difficult to understand what it is like to be a teacher, unless you are a teacher.  Today, those other teachers reminded me of why I chose this profession.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Busy Week

OK,I am behind again and I have a super busy week ahead so I am going to try to catch up.

Nov. 22- Family- I'm not just thankful for my family, but the function of a family.  I am just as thankful for the family of people I am not related to as I am the family of people I AM related too!

Nov. 23- Mrs. Reid- She is Michael's teacher and an amazing woman!  She possesses an inordinate amount of patience.  Michael came to school as a reader, but she has turned hm into a writer as well.

Nov. 24- Professional Opportunities- The reason I am so busy this week is that I have 2 professional opportunities coming up.  Next week, I will spend 4 days at an instructional technology workshop.  Four.  Whole.  Days.  That is an enormous amount of time to be out of the classroom.  The other opportunity is the next week.  I will be presenting an instructional technology workshop for my district.  The workshop is on easy ways to integrate technology into the classroom.  Great opportunities nut -aye yai yai- it is a lot of work all at one time!

Nov. 25- Holidays- specifically, holidays that result in me having days off work!

Nov. 26- my sweet baby Kindergarteners- I missed them so much over break- but I was so glad to have he break.

I am off to work now, those lesson plans do not write themselves!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Making up for lost time...

The problem with naming something you are thankful for everyday in November is not  finding things you are thankful for, it's finding time to write about them all!  In typical fashion, it is the night before Thanksgiving and I'm a week behind so grab some coffee, tea, water, or wine and settle in!

Nov. 15-Facebook- It helps me keep in touch with people that I don't see or talk to everyday, but don't want to cut out of my life.

Nov. 16- the hide feature on facebook-  I love people!  Unfortunately, some of them get on my nerves.  It's not that I mind the religious or political posts, it's that I detest being overwhelmed by then.  I don't like signing on to facebook and being assulted image after image, post after post, link after link by religious and political posts.  Do you love Jesus?  Great!  Me too!  Do you have to tell me 34809 times? NOPE.  Jesus spends more time in my heart than he does on facebook.  Sometimes I hide people so I'll remember to love them instead of become frustrated with them.

Nov. 17- Good Times!- This was a busy busy busy Saturday for us.  It went yard sale (made $5.00), home to prepare food (stuffing), parade (sucked), turkey fry (awesome)!  The parade really did suck.  Seriously.  Did anyone even plan it or did people just drive through town?  I think anyone in the Piedmont-Triad area who has a car is invited to enter.  Here are a couple of my favorite attractions...

Yes, that's the Great Clips float...

I'm not actually sure if this is part of the parade
or if somebody made a wrong turn...

The turkey fry was awesome!  It was held at a dear friends house.  I had never had fried turkey before and I couldn't wait to try it. Usually, I'm so excited about the traditional Thanksgiving side dishes, that I skip the turkey, but this was good turkey.  I love meeting new people and met a lot that night.  I think they all go to my church too so hopefully I will get to know them better.

Nov. 18- Fiction-  I am so very thankful for works of fiction.  Life is tough and there is a lot of evil in the world.  I love to lose myself in made up worlds.  Where I can forget about my worries and focus on someone elses, which will all be tied up in a nice, neat package in the end.  In case you can't tell...
Breaking Dawn tickets :)
Nov. 19- adderall :)
Nov. 20- Today, I am thankful for Sherry Norton.  She is my 'other half' at school.  She's the details to my big picture.  She is the keeper of important documents that I'm not allowed to lose.  She is the one that knows exactly who is absent.  She displays student work with ease.  She loves and teaches the sweet babies in our care.  And she lets me write about her during writing.  And she doesn't laugh when we have to talk about poop in the classroom...

Nov. 21- My car.  It's a great car.  It's just a regular car but it represents two things for me.  Freedom is the first one.  As long as I have my car, I have the ability to leave.  I can leave my house or I can leave the state.  It's not the destination, it's the freedom to go.  Love is the other thing it represents.  A few years ago, I wrecked my beloved 'first car' (you know, that 'first car' you buy yourself when you get a real job).  I loved Coco the Cavelier.  I was only 1 payment away from owning her completely when the insurance company decided it was totaled.  Not only was I devastated at the thought of losing Coco, I didn't know what I would do about a replacement.  When I bought Coco, I was starting off on my own- I had a great job with a promising future.  Fast forward 6 years and I was a single mom on a frozen pay scale with bad credit.  In stepped one of the greatest men with an act of love and selflessness that blew me away.  My Pawpaw restored my sense of freedom.

Thanks for sticking around to read til the end, I know it was long but I hope you enjoyed it!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Frobel and Schurz and Peabody- Oh My!

Nov. 14- Today I give thanks for Friedrich Frobel.  He is the man who began a Kindergarten program.  It originated in Germany and came to the United States by way of Margarethe Schurz.  Her program was still in German but Elizabeth Peabody opened the first English-speaking Kindergarten in 1860 in Massachusetts. Although the program has changed in many ways, and I'm sure it will change in many more, I'm extremely thankful for the people who began this wonderful program!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Friends, Veterans, Laziness and YouTube

Nov 11- Today I am thankful for good friends.  My friend and her daughter had a yard sale this weekend, and invited me to participate.  I took some stuff and made about $20.00 combined.  I also got rid of about 3 boxes worth of stuff.  More importantly, I spent time with wonderful people AND my son got to play with some other kids.  Oh yeah, I also got to hold a baby.  I love babies!  We tried to sell the idea of taking a picture with THE WORLD'S CUTEST BABY for $1.00, but no takers.  :(  We are hoping to open again this weekend, if the weather isn't rainy.  You should come buy my stuff :)

Nov. 12- Today I am thankful for Veterans and all their sacrifice.  Having been married to the military for a brief time, I am also thankful for their families and the sacrifice they make.

Nov. 13- Today I am thankful for lazy days at home.  Yesterday was a holiday and I only left the house once.  And that was to go in my backyard because Michael said there were 'hundreds of dead animals' on the ground.  Seeing as how we might be under an zombied-animal attack, I figured I had to be the grown-up and investigate.  No zombies, just seed pods from the tree, so it was good news.  I also cleaned my house, which is a miracle in itself.

Nov. 14- I am thankful that there are people in this world who are creative enough, invested enough and have time enough to make YouTube videos.  Many of them I use in my classroom.  Some of them I use for my own personal entertainment.

Like this one.

Warning:  Contains adult language.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Creepy Guy Update, Thankfulness and Boyz II Men

Wow!  I am way behind on my thankful posts.  I have been keeping a list of things I'm thankful for though, so I'll get caught up in just a minute.  First, I need to update you about Creepy Guy, ya'know the one who is always standing in the yard without his shirt on?  You don't?  Go read this post then.  It's okay, I'll wait...

Great, you're back!  So, anyway... today, Creepy Guy not only had his shirt on BUT some of the couches were off the porch and he was sitting on the one that was left!  I had to look twice to make sure, but there was only ONE couch on the porch instead of the usual 4 or 5.  What do you make of that?

I have 4 thankful posts to make, so you might want to go get some hot chocolate or something.  It's right over there in the corner.  Yes, I have little marshmallows over here and there is hot water for anyone who prefers tea.

November 8-  Today I am thankful for field trips.  I took my class on a field trip to Patterson Farm today.  On the bus ride home, the kids were screaming "Ms. White is the best teacher ever!"  I took a video of them, and told them I was going to show it to them next time they were mad at me.  I love field trips because of the excitement my students bring to it.  Everything we do on a field trip is met with wide-eyed gazes of awe.  Go over a river?  Squeals of delight!  Pass a construction zone?  The bus sounds louder than all the equipment working.  Get a trucker to honk it's horn?  Fits of laughter and giggles abound!  I'm thankful for field trips because of the excitement to learning that they bring.

November 9-  I am thankful for the innocence of young children.  On the way to school the other day, my sweet baby boy asked me what I was afraid of.  Losing him is my number 1 fear, and I told him that.  My other fear, is of clowns, which I also told him.  He looked at me in the rear view mirror for a moment and then said in his most solemn voice "I know you don't know this, but clowns are not real.  They are just people dressed up in silly outfits.  You don't have to be afraid of them."  The sweetness and earnestness of his face and voice made me want to melt.  Hopefully, I can hold on to that the next time I have that terrible dream where the clowns are chasing me up the sidewalk!

November 10- I am thankful for the special Mother/Son relationship I have with my son.  Our school had a Mother-Son Dance on Friday. Everyone got all dressed up and we had a great time!  The last song of the evening was Mama by Boyz II Men.  As I picked Michael up to dance the last dance, he wrapped his arms around my neck, put his head on my shoulder and said "I love you, Mama"  Sigh... melt...

I'm going to sign off on that note... I'll finish updating later.  Feeling the need to cuddle my sweet boy!

Thursday, November 8, 2012


Today, November 7, I am thankful for healthcare and insurance.  I have excellent healthcare, and I pay a lot for it.  I don't mind because I choose to be thankful for it.  It gives me access to a wonderful doctor that I love.  I could see him without the insurance, but I wouldn't go as often.  My heart breaks for people who do not have access to quality healthcare.

#thankful #healthcare #docter #insurance

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Coupons and Voting

Super sleepy yesterday meant no blogging for me.

November 5- Coupons.  I am so thankful for coupons.  And websites like www.southernsavers.com and www.moolasavingmom.com.  Sunday, I went to Harris Teeter and spent $31.00 on $80.00 worth of food.  I LOVE it when I spend less than I save!  It's especially helpful with a growing boy.  Dinner last night was eggs, bacon and croissants.  Michael ate 3 eggs, over 1/2 a pound of bacon and 3 croissants.  And 2 glasses of milk.  He's 5.  He's not a teenager.  I'm stockpiling now to survive the teenage years.

November 6- Voting.  I already rocked my vote on Saturday.  Today I am thankful that I live in a country where I have the RIGHT to vote.  If you don't vote, you lose your right to complain.  I'm also thankful that for awhile at least, I don't have to be inundated with political advertisements, commercials, and facebook posts.  Sometimes I'd like to mail it all back to where it came from, but I don't want to waste the stamp.

#harristeeter #coupon #vote #thankful

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Creepy Guys and Church

I have 2 thankful thoughts for November 4.

For the first one, you need a little back story.  Around the corner from my house is a big white house.  It could be beautiful!  On that house, is a nice big, almost wraparound porch.  On that almost wraparound porch is living room furniture- mainly couches.  The couches are all stacked up so they aren't there to sit on.  In that house, lives a man.  At least I assume he lives there-insert creepy sound- because he's always standing in the yard.  Not working in the yard.  Not walking across the yard.  Not sitting on the couches.  Just standing.  I don't know if he's guarding the couches or what, he's just always there.  Usually- insert more creepy factor- he's not wearing a shirt.  Today he had a shirt on!  For that, I am truly thankful!

The second thankful thought I had today was in church as Pastor Whit was standing on a chair telling a joke. I am so thankful to have found a church that mixes blue jeans with Sunday best, laughter with tears and reverence with humor. The church 'choir' consists of at least one drum set, 2 keyboard and 3 electric guitars.  We know how to rock!  I am so thankful that I joined this church last Spring!

#thankful  #creepy  #church

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Babies Babies Babies

I absolutely LOVE babies!  Quite clearly though, I remember my days as a new mom of an infant.  I loved him so much, but I was full of guilt, loneliness and other overwhelming feelings which bring us to today's thankful post.  

November 3- I'm thankful that I was awake around 6 AM (not so happily) and on facebook (because I couldn't sleep).  I am so thankful I was there to recognize the cries of a frustrated new mommy.  This new mommy is someone is who is very dear to my heart, but whom I don't often see.  I am so thankful that I was around to let her know she was not alone.  I know she will be a good mommy.  I've known her since she was a little girl and I know SHE has a wonderful mama.  If you see a new mommy, or any mommy, in crisis, please make sure you step in and give her a hand.  Motherhood is tough, that's why women have to do it :)

Here is a picture of my sweet boy right after his first birthday!

Friday, November 2, 2012

The Thankful Season

November is thankfulness season. Thankfulness posts explode onto all the social media sites. Thankfulness, however, is not a once a year thing.  So when you post all November about how thankful you are and then whine and moan about your life for the 11 other months of the year, are you truly thankful?

I am a thankful person.  I have a fabulous life!  I have a great family, wonderful friends and I love my job.  My challenge- to myself- and YOU is to move past the normal everyday things you are thankful for.  Have parents? I'm sure you're thankful.  Have a spouse? I bet you're thankful again.  Kids?  Thankful- check!  Look for an original, specific event or reason that you are thankful.  Here are my first 2 (since I'm already late.)

November 1- I'm thankful for the path that God set me on when He told me to move to NC.  Has it been difficult?  Absolutely!  My journey to NC has also brought more growth and taught me more lessons than any decisions I have made in this world.  Sometimes I look back at who I was then, and marvel at the amount of faith in God I had.  And I'm thankful for that faith, because without it- I wouldn't have started the miraculous journey that is my life.

November 2- Tonight, I'm thankful for child-free nights.  I love my son.  He is an amazingly intelligent, ingenious, hilarious gift.  And I'm thankful for him, but I'm thankful for him everyday!  Tonight, I'm thankful he's not here.  He is spending the night with his dad.  Sometimes I spend my child-free evenings with my fabulous friends.  Sometimes I spend them at home with a movie and some wine.  Either way, these nights let me relax, recoup and re-energize.  When my sweet boy comes home, I'm ready to take on the world again.  Being a single parent is the hardest thing I've done.  Living 5 hours from my family (see November 1) makes it even harder.  Let's here it for child-free nights!

You've read mine.  Now it's your turn.  Stop.  Think.  Reflect.  What are you thankful for?

Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Best Advertising

At the last soccer game of the season, another mom told me about a local grocery store that was giving away pumpkins for kids to decorate.  Since my favorite kind of activity is a free one, I convinced Michael that it would be great fun.  While he decorated his pumpkin, I stood around and thought of all the things I needed at the grocery store.  
Almost $50.00 later, I realized I had been caught in the trap!  I'm usually one of those annoying coupon ladies but I thought 'oh, I'll just pick up a few items...'.

Here's a picture of Michael getting his medal for playing soccer.  It was the highlight of his 5 year old life and I was just as proud.  I don't have to mention that he only scored one goal for the season... and it was for the other team (insert sigh).... He is much more of an academic than a sports player, and that makes me super happy!

Out of all that money I spent, one great joy came out of it.  Michael found a make a car toy.  I didn't have high hopes for it, but it was only a dollar so I figured 'What the heck, he needs to learn not to expect much when you buy something so cheap...'  I was really prepared to be super disappointed, but it BLEW me away!  The car stayed together and really runs.