Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Just another day in paradise....

Today I finally acted on the decision I made last Saturday. First of all, I used cohersion and manipulation, but it worked, so I think I'll utilize it more often (;o). I told my teaching partner I had made a decision and that was that she would be teaching 6th grade again with me again next year. That was a LONG shot based on her talk up through this point.....but hey, it worked! She told me on Saturday she had decided she wanted to do it one more year....how about that?!?!? It should be fun, it'll be the first year we will both get to do the same thing we did the year before (then again, this won't be the first time I thought that was going to be the case, but the one word I had to add DAILY to my job (and I'm sure I'm not alone) is FLEXIBILITY! I knew I would stay if she stayed....you can't replace great co-workers....Today I FINALLY wrote the email I figured I was going to write anyway, regardless of what Sonia decided to do, and I 'retracted' my application for the Campus Reading Specialist position. I sugar coated it, and I got a nicely sugar-coated email in return....so I think all is well....I guess I'll see how that works if I decide to apply once again for the position! So it's officialy....I'm a sixth grade teacher....it'll be my 6th year....that's two sixes.....I'm going to worry if I think about a way to add a third six to that.....though if it were something like a 'six figure' salary, I'd probably get over the creapiness of triple 6's. A few things to look forward to, we are going to a week training in Austin this summer to implement this new program that tries to put 'blue collar" (the only summary phrase I can think of without turning this into a disertation) families with kids on the college bound path....the ones that slip through the cracks. They have the program in JR high and now HS, and now we are piloting the elementary level program, which I'm REALLY excited about. Beyond that I'm also working with the SS department, which I'm always pumped and happy to do.....I'm presenting two workshops this summer (yet to be written or planned).....they had six dates for me.....I negotiated down to 2, and I'm working on writing some sixth grade SS curriculum to align with the new reading program. It's been the 'forgotten' subject this year for a lot of campuses with a reading, math, science and writing state test.....social studies is the only one not 'tested' in school....just in life.....so we will see what we can do. The name of the workshops are "Social Studies in Five Minutes".....the problem is....everybody doesn't necessarily speed talk like I do....so even teaching short meaningful lessons, maybe I should make it ten. It should be an interesting year to say the least....but it's one less decision to make....now I can work on the life altering decisions I've put on the backburner, like, where I'm going on my summer vacation :O).

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Xavier's B-day....


It's almost April....which means it's ALMOST Xavier's 12th b-day. He's going camping next weekend, so I had him over THIS week....for a cookout-camouflage style (I teach 12 year old's all day, but I still have no idea what they like!). Or I should say....nothing I'm willing to buy! So....this year he got a fishing pole, tackle and a tackle box. Jason loves fishing and they love going with him....and as you can see in the very corner of the picture....his cupcakes had bobbers on top.....Jason also brought them over a little early and he had given them each a Tony Stewart outfit to wear over (he's obsessed....it was pretty cute when they all came in wearing orange).

Spring



The other day I went into my backyard, I looked up and there was a whole little cluster of beautiful birds (though the ugly black birds still flock in every morning for dog food, I was happy to see they invited some pretty friends along). This little fellow stuck around long enough to let me catch a picture of him, this is one reason I love the trees.....red birds, robins, doves and more! I'm hoping everyone will focus their attention upwards and not notice I STILL don't have any grass in my backyard! I have birds though.....aren't they supposed to carry seeds or something? (Or in my case, eat the seed I put down!)

Friday, March 17, 2006

Quilt Show-Mary and Sonia


Two of my favorite people....

Thursday, March 16, 2006

26 going on 62....


You know how some people take up bike riding? Mountain climbing? Cooking? I've taken up quilting. Some of you know this. I made my first quilt over Christmas break.....there is a story behind it.....my teaching partner quilts (she love math, so it's right up her alley) and the third amigo, who we used to work with, wanted to learn to quilt b/c both of her daughters are getting married and she wanted to make them each a quilt....so.....I happened to be with them when they went to the fabric store....and somehow I got sucked into it.....No, this isn't the quilt I made over Christmas ....that quilt actually looks pretty good if I do say so myself.....but it's off to be 'professionally' quilted (as if I don't qualify as a professional!)....and who even knew there was such a thing.....anyway, in the meantime I wanted to go off the beaten path and try out a baby blanket (not to ruin the surprise or anything, but you do realize if I continue this, each of yours will be getting one.....it's that or a scrapbook or a wedding cake or bouquet....that about covers my hobbies)...so here it is....ghetto fabulous baby blankets by Christy.....hand quilted.....invented binding, mismeasured squares and puckered fabrics (lets hope for your future childs sake that you aren't planning on having kids anytime soon.....I have a ways to go.....but.....I'm proud.....but this afternoon when I was trying to figure out how to piece it together I asked my MOM'S friends who were over for lunch if any of them quilted and they all said no, but THEIR Grandmom's did, but they were DEAD now.....and no offense.....but it's not like my Mom's friends are exactly youthful, but they are even too young for quilting apparently????.....Who knows....maybe this should be a secret or something....OK....I'm sure by next month I'll have a new hobby, but I thought I'd share this interesting little side project.....what I did on my Spring vacation. You better book your visit to Dallas to visit me ASAP....with activities like this....you are going to have some major tourist competition wanting ot stop in.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Sandye.....


I realized awhile back, so many of my friends, don't know my other friends, and a few of you know of the others, but haven't seen each other in a million years, so today, I happened to have my camera in my car from the zoo, and I took it into dinner with my friend Sandye. We meet on a pretty regular basis, went to high school together, and have kept in touch through college and beyond (some of you know this story). I'm going to try to capture more shots of you guys. As for Sandye, she's about to end the wedding drought of the last year.....it's been way too long since someone was getting married (minus that four day whirlwind my brother brought into my life)....so as soon as there is a ring (which will be VERY soon, no pressure to her boyfriend or anything) I'll be getting details from Sandye about her upcoming life events ;o). This week I've been trying to catch up with people in town via outings, and out of town via phone calls.....so every night is dinner with someone new, with fun stories and news, and then I'm trying to get creative with the rest (exercise at 7 am with Terri W this morning that dedication...or insanity, the verdicts still out).

A few kangaroos and a very relatives....


My towards the end of the day only the animals were still hopping. This is Taylor, Xavier and my cousin Holly (now 20, working hard on 21 for those of you that haven't seen her in a few hundred years.....home for college on Spring Break....some college students go to Myrtle Beach and Daytona, some get dragged to the Zoo with their cousins....)

Just hanging out with a bunch of monkeys....


I'm not sure what inspired me to spend my day with a ten and twelve year old, considering the fact that I've spent my last five years with kids that age, but Taylor and Xavier were a lot more fun to be around (I remembered that I like that age sometimes too)....today we hit the Dallas Zoo via the Dart Rail. The animals were in rare form.....I have a couple shots with animals, but this is my favorite one of both of them together....the zoo looks much the same......I have to admit by the end of the day I was bypassing some of the big attractions, but I think you get the point ;o)....or at least they did....some of the animals had as much fun bothering Taylor and Xavier as the two of them had bothering the animals.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Long week!


What a week. Thanks again for all the prayers and kind words this week. Mom went and came through the surgery in great spirits.....the first day wasn't very pretty, but she is coming around. She's moving around pretty well, a little forgetful thanks to the medicine, but she's trying new things each day. So many people have done so many thoughtful things all week long.....I'm sure she will go through withdrawal when something new doesn't arrive daily from thoughtful friends and family. They released her from the hospital a day after expected, but everything looks good. Staples were removed today, with another appointment in three weeks if all goes well! The only bad side effect is this shot she has to take every night.....my Mom always taught me that shots weren't bad as long as you don't look at them......it's a habit we both have implemented.....but one of us has to look at this shot to administer it......the first time was bad....I'm hoping everything is down hill from there. In the end, the doctor said her uterus ended up being TEN times the size of a normal uterus....so she's got to feel better in the long run with all that out. They removed everything, so she should have plenty in room in her stomach to store spare change or something.
The other interesting tidbit is I went for a job interview as a reading specialist for the district. It's a long complicated story, but I don't think I'm going to take the job. The title is more 'prestigious' but it takes me down a road I don't know that I'm necessarily interested in going. I like reading, but I also love and am involved with a lot of social studies (which is a dead end road in the district,but something I'm passionate about and would have to give up). I originally applied thinking there might be a parttime reading, and parttime 'other' (complicated to explain) position, but that is not going to be the case. I'm not completely sure about what I want to do, I have to decide whether to take the position in about a week. I'm meeting some 'wise' work friends next Friday and I'm sure I'll try to obtain advice from them and others throughout the week. Anyway, I'm looking into changing things up next year b/c I think my teaching partner is planning to go to the same district her son is at b/c all of his breaks have been different this year etc etc etc and it would be a good time. I may give sixth grade one more year. I don't dislike my job at all, I'm just exploring options.....

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Taylor turns 10....


This morning (after an exhilarating morning of Saturday school...blah), Jason, Tonya, Taylor and Xavier joined Mom and I to celebrate Taylor's 10th birthday. Purple, pink and princess seemed about right. (You can never be too young to learn all the ins and outs of being a royal diva). This is my new favorite niece. In a week or so I'll try to post a picture of Xavier as well, I hope to steal them for an outing over spring break to boost up my Aunt rating....lets hope for a sunny spring break to capture some great shots at the zoo (as a former girl scout, of course I have a plan B-The Aquarium)! Don't worry, I plan to spoil ROTTEN every one of your future children as well....I'm practicing on Xavier and Taylor....they don't seem to mind. Notice how the theme of my blogs went from puppies to younguns? Someday I'll move to events with people over the age of 12! (Pardon the picture, I have no idea how to rotate it!)