Wednesday, December 24, 2008

7 hours later...

another party last night! This was for the H side of the family, at the house where grandma and grandpa used to live and their four children grew up... Tom and Barb now live there.

It was SO MUCH FUN!! we had the annual scavenger hunt, and Julie, Heidi, Matt, Nora, and Tammy's team won (by one point over the second place team). Cousins found out new things about each other, and we had them going all around town, stomping through three feet of snow, checking dates, etc. Instead of going on and on, I'm going to share some pictures.

Bulleted List

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Lots of food, laughs, and gifts

We had a ladies get-together with the aunts and older cousins on the L side of the family yesterday evening. This is always one of my favorite parties of the year. Always lots of laughs and the great feeling of togetherness!
Here are some (in no particular order) of my favorites from the night.



Everybody, including Mutty. This was a self-timer sitting on a stool behind a couch. Not the best, but at least no one's heads are chopped off, right?

Can't remember what Judy's doing here...

Janet made it!!

Wesley was the only boy there... he got lots of attention :)

Mutty liked to snuggle. He's behind Susie in this picture, making friends with me. (13 days until she gets married to Roger P!)

We exchange names for garage sale gifts. Kristin had my mom and everytime they went garage sale-ing together, Kristin would secretly buy the things my mom said she liked... My mom was quite surprised!!!

Friday night gift-exchange

Heather, Liz, Leanne and I exchanged names a month or so ago and we had a little Christmas party on Friday night to give our gifts and spend some time together during this busy season.

After being convinced for about 2 minutes, Heather LOVED her sleeping bag!

and had to try out all of the cool features

and spent the rest of the evening/night in it!

We had a blast watching Leanne open her gift.
What a smile!! Now she's embarrassed, but I don't remember why!

I think this is where I told her to smell the tissue. She sniffed it, then told me that's a good joke... haha... except it was supposed to smell pepperminty. Hmmm.

Liz was sitting right next to me so I didn't get any really good ones of her opening her gift.
Here she is trying to read the ribbon on her box. After about ten words like merry, joyful, peace, etc.... we asked her to get on with it.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Happy #26!!!

Happy Birthday to you! Happy birthday to you!! Happy Birthday dear SARAH!! Happy Birthday to you! :)
If you see this awesome girl today, wish her a happy birthday! Or if you happen to stop by her blog, wish her well!!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Here and there

A few random photos to spruce this page up :)

6 months old!

Send off for the National Guard

:) He loves to laugh!!

4 sisters


I got a phone call at 6:10 this morning... no school! It's a snow day! :)

So I got to cozy up, read my book, and hold my nephew. What a wonderful morning!

Happy snow day to you all!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Five more days

Five more days until my first big break!
1. The Holocaust in US History.
2. States projects in Civics.
3. Justice System Simulation in Government
4. World Religions in World History (we're going to learn about the different festivals and celebrations each religion has -- groups of two students have different religions and they're in charge! Friday we're going to celebrate Christmas all together.)
5. Field trip in Local History on Wednesday. I'm still not sure what I got myself into, if this is a good idea or not....

Then SIXTEEN days off!!!
I have a list for those days, too... I'm planning on working on about five days and hopefully getting a LOT done on each day, so I can actually have eleven days off. That would be simply amazing!

What's your favorite Christmas song? Mine's Hark the Herald. It's been in and out of my head for the past month or so -- on a daily basis. Still haven't sung it in church yet, but hopefully soon!

Friday, December 12, 2008


Happy Birthday to my dear friend Jill! #26 tomorrow!! It's crazy to realize that we're getting up there... I remember 10th birthday parties, and 13th, not to mention sweet 16, etc.

I hope you have a wonderful day! Have Ryan take you out :)


Okay, so I noticed on a couple of people's blogs that I was tagged... I've never taken part in one of these, so here goes. Six things I haven't written about on here.

1. When it comes to my work, I'm a perfectionist. Sort of. I want to be the best possible, even if it means sacrificing my personal life. :S I was never a perfectionist in school, life, anything before I had a certain job in college. Since then, I want to be the best. Ack, I know that's not good, but it drives me.

2. I take showers, get dressed, clean, rearrange, find things, and lose things -- all while I'm sleeping. I'm not one of those "go to bed at night and wake up in the morning" kind of people.

3. I don't eat things with (added) sugar in them. Natural sugar is fine. It's the added stuff that gets me. I had headaches all last winter -- migranes and regular headaches 4 or 5 times a week. Some other problems, too. So I cut out sugar and --dwell-ah! -- no more headaches!!!

4. I'm proper (apparently). I just asked my little sis Julie what not very many people know about me and she said that.

5. I'm a morning person. This one still surprises me, but I do my best work in the morning. and if I have something that requires a lot of concentration or lots of energy, I have to do it in the morning. Mind you, I don't like waking up early. It's just that when I do -- that's when I do my best work.

6. I don't have a lot of confidence in myself, nor do I have a good self-image. This gets worse as I get older. :S

There you go! That was tough; not things I usually talk about or tell people, but there they are... Whew -- deep breath before I click "Publish"

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

I'm a nerd

I left work early today (3:45) because I had an eye doctor's appointment... I love going to the eye doctor! I've been having some vision difficulties and I think we got those figured out, so that makes me excited. I'm getting new glasses in a week or two, but they won't look new. They still had the ones I have so they're going to be the same as these. Wow, fun and interesting, right?! The same glasses that I've had for the past three years -- again.

So I'm not at school doing work (although I'm attempting to write a lesson plan about Peter the Great and Russia).

I'm watching "Battlefield Detectives" and today's subject is the Battle for Stalingrad during World War II. Yep, it's my freetime. and I'm learning all about Stalingrad.

Today I had (in my opinion) a really good lesson in government about foreign policy and national defense. **Warning: if you aren't interested in history, do not read further.**

Yesterday we were talking about isolationism and how the US adopted this view for the first 150+ years of our country's existence. About half of the class started asking why we don't still have this philosophy. Why did we have to take the lead and become a country that goes on the offensive? Why can't we stay out of other countrys' businesses? etc. I answered their questions the best I could and thought about it yesterday evening.

I have a really good animated presentation about Hitler's rise to power during the 1930s and 40s, and it shows how much of Europe he and the Nazis came to control -- when the rest of the world didn't want to get involved. It scares me everytime I see it and really think about how powerful the Nazis were.

By the time we were done looking at it and discussing it, all of the students had changed their minds. They all wondered why we didn't get involved sooner and said that it's good we are more cognizant of what's going on around the world, and that we care.

It's not my goal to change their minds and agree with things the government does; it is my job, however, to help them to think critically about issues and understand them better.

Once I'm on the topic of school, this week in US History we're studying FDR and all of the New Deal programs he (and his administration) came up with... the students are making newspapers from the 30s, and they're looking great!

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Liz and I have been talking about dreams a lot lately. Whenever she has a really vivid dream (and remembers it in the morning), part of it usually comes true. Well the other night she had one, and so she's wondering which part of it's going to come true. That same night I had a dream that I lost my job (so I was trying to find part-time jobs at any local school district, hoping that I could get two or three and it'd add up to full-time), and last night I dreamed that someone stole my camera. So I lost my job and my camera within two nights, and I'm counting on neither of those dreams coming true!

Hope those of you who are up here are enjoying the cold and snow and wind and drifts! 'Tis the season :)

And on that note, ten days of school until break!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

In a fog

I didn't realize until a few minutes ago, but I've been in a fog for the past few days. I can hardly remember this week... it must be from the stress of the observation. I met with my principal today and it went well, so :) that helps!!!

Really, one good meeting or one good comment can go a long ways! I have some Christmas lights up around the front of my classroom and it makes it cozier in there, and I can see a change in my students (especially when the lights are off and it's just the Christmas lights). I never imagined myself as the type to put lights or decorations up, but I like it!

It's snowing -- yea for winter!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Whew -- that's over!

Thanks Sarah and Juli for the encouragement! It's great to hear :)

Today was my first formal observation. It's done -- I can say that for sure! Besides that, I won't find out what he thought until tomorrow. We have a "post-observation" meeting scheduled during my prep hour, so we'll see...

On a positive note, 13 school days until Christmas break! I mentioned to the students that we have two weeks off and they corrected me. It's 16 days. That'll be nice!! Time to catch up on some things at school, figure out how to write an exam (and then do six of them), find a master's degree program to apply to ASAP and start in the summer. and then the fun stuff: hang out with my family (everyone's going to be home!!!!), maybe do some scrapbooking, go out for lunch with Sarah :), try to get together with the girls I graduated with, enjoy some Christmas parties, etc.

Happy holidays!!