Thursday, January 31, 2008


one orange

Learning to play

Samuel wins Pretty, Pretty Princess

It rained this morning, and they called off school! I actually wanted to go to school today. I have had my class scheduled for the library for weeks now (and I can't reschedule any time soon). Our wonderful librarian was teaching a lesson to all of my classes which meant I would have time to grade, plan, etc. I know that the anticipation of bad weather was what prompted the cancellation. Now, I'm waiting for them to cancel for tomorrow - which I do want them to do! It's always frustrating when the streets are covered with snow, but we get ready for bed not knowing whether or not we'll have to get out and go in the morning. I'm really hoping that we'll find out tonight so that I don't have to set my alarm. (Of course, it doesn't help that John already knows his school is out.)

The kids played outside some today even though there wasn't any snow to play in. I suggested that they get out CandyLand and teach Hannah how to play. She loved it! Both boys seemed irritated that she cheated. (I don't really think she knew she was cheating; she just doesn't understand the rules.) It's amazing how competitive a game of CandyLand can become. Overall it was a great day to lay around and not have to do a whole lot.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Almost Everyone Enjoyed the Weather

We have finally thawed out. Instead of highs in the upper 20s, it was 64 degrees this afternoon. Wow! The kids had fun playing outside, and John went geocaching. I spent the afternoon covered with a blanket feeling yucky. I hope I'm not getting the virus that's going around at school. I got a flu shot last fall, so I think I'm ok there. There is something different going around that causes headache, fever, chills, etc. I do feel a little better tonight; it could just be the vanilla diet coke from Sonic that my sweet husband went to get for me. :)

I have done more reading on Europe in the Middle Ages. I am re-learning parts of history that I haven't studied in almost twenty years. I really enjoyed learning all of this with Susie Stewart at FHS. I'm just trying to figure out how to teach it to my 7th graders. Hands-on activities aren't always easy to plan with names, dates, battles, and so forth. Susan - - if you have any suggestions of stories, videos, picture books, etc. for this unit, please let me know.

I'm including some pictures of the kids playing in the back yard. The boys played football. Samuel was Arkansas, and Jacob was Florida. You'll be happy to know that Arkansas won! Notice that Samuel kicks the ball so hard that his shoe flies off!

Saturday, January 26, 2008


Saturdays are a favorite at our house. We can sleep in, stay in pajamas all day, and just play. This morning, I actually got to sleep until a little after 7:00 a.m. when I began hearing Hannah crying in her bed. This is a first for a long time. She has had the horrible habit of coming into our room (and bed) at all hours of the night. I have worked hard to break her of this so that I can get more quality sleep. She hasn't been come in our room in the middle of the night for almost two weeks. I did bring her back with me for some snuggle time while waiting for the heat to come on and warm up the house.

Later in the morning, we went to Sam's. I called my mom to see if she wanted to come with us. (Sam's is really close to her house.) We had fun walking through the store and "grazing" on the food samples. On the way back home, Hannah and I stopped at the grocery store for the rest of our shopping.

I have gotten a good bit of reading done this afternoon. I'm having to re-teach myself medieval history. My next unit is on the Middle Ages in Europe. The new frameworks I have this year are causing me to spend a LOT of extra time doing lesson plans.

John is making homemade pizza for dinner - yum! The Razorback game is on tv, so our evening activities won't take a lot of planning.

I tried to rent a movie to watch last night. I really want to watch a good romantic comedy or chick flick - whichever you prefer to call it. I couldn't find one online, so we opted for a western instead. Any suggestions??

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Learning from the Best

More and more of my family members having gotten into this whole "blogging" thing. I am having a blast visiting each of their blogs, making comments, and reading the comments they make on my entries. My oldest sister, Ann, has four children - all basically grown. The oldest three are all married. As a teenager, I spent an incredible amount of time with them. In many ways they were like younger siblings. I loved playing games with them, watching tv (ok, I probably made them watch too many re-runs of Little House on the Prairie), hiking, eating rotel, etc. At some point, our relationship changed. When I started dating John, I began spending far less time hanging out at my sister's house. The kids finished growing up, and I no longer felt as close. It has always made me sad. I have now having such fun seeing the adults they have become. I am enjoying interacting with them in different ways. I used to be the cool aunt who played with them; now I just hope not to bore them to tears at family functions. They are now the cool ones that my kids want to play with (hide and seek that lasts for hours!). I am thankful to them for the example that they set for my kids! I am thankful for my big sister for her example of how to be a great mom!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Slip & Slide

Well, once again we were paying too much attention to the hype about bad weather. We went to bed last night wondering if we'd have school today. I had really mixed feelings about it. I have inservice this afternoon, so I'm only in the classroom this morning. I'm really looking forward to having a chance to meet with the other social studies teachers. We got so much done the last time we met that I hate to miss it. On the other hand, what teacher doesn't like a snow day??!! Jacob was very disappointed this morning. He was just sure he'd get to stay home. It was even worse when he found out that John's district cancelled classes today. I had to remind him of the time last year when we got out and Daddy still had to go. The nice thing about that is I don't have to get Hannah ready and out the door so early. John can wait and take her after I leave. It is "supposed to" precipitate again later in the week . . . . but, we'll see . . . .

Monday, January 14, 2008


That's the name of the grad class I'm taking this semester. I had my first class tonight, and I think it's going to be a good one. I have the same professor I had last semester (in fact, she'll teach all of my classes except those required for all MEds - like statistics, yuck!). Our big project this semester is an invention. Yes, I actually have to invent something. My homework, besides the usual reading, is to make a list of everything that really bugs me. Can you imagine such an assignment? Ought to be pretty easy, huh? That's supposed to give me a springboard for ideas for what kind of product I want to try to invent.

I've been trying really hard to stick to my New Year goals. I've been doing a great job of drinking more water. I had my seventh graders write goals last week, and I used that as an example of something I needed to work on. I asked them to hold me accountable by asking me how much water I've had (I drink out of this 48 oz. nalgene bottle at school). Oh my goodness did I open a can of worms with that request! I have a dozen students hounding me throughout the day about my water consumption. Never ask a seventh grader to do something if you don't really mean it! I feel like I've been doing better with eating although it's frustrating to not have immediate results. I think it's part of our immediate gratification culture. It's not in us to want to work hard for something. At least it's not in me. At least not when it comes to food.

Bible study has still been a struggle, but it is at least happening some. Any suggestions on something that will be easy for me to fall into and then become passionate about? I prayed last night for God to give me a passion to spend time with Him. Guess what I read about this morning?? The Revelations passage about losing your first love. The devotion was about having passion for God. It made me feel like I was asking for the right thing and perhaps headed in the right direction. Maybe that's God being creative! After all, creation was pretty creative!!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A Day Without Dr. Pepper

I'm not necessarily trying to quit drinking soft drinks, but I do know that I drink too many and should drink more water. I don't drink enough of any kind of drink for that matter. I'm trying to drink at least two full nalgene bottles of water during the school day. Today when I got home, I realized that I hadn't had my usual caffeine-free diet dr. pepper (I think I'm just addicted to the carbonation and the aluminum can!). So, I chose to drink water with dinner and then challenged myself to not have a soft drink at all.

So far, my new year's resolutions are on track. Yesterday I came home and did this new exercise video that uses a big ball; it's kinda fun. Today, I played Wii tennis for a good long time with Samuel. My arm will probably be sore tomorrow. I saw an advertisement for Race for a Cure this afternoon and thought of my sister who is starting to train for a triathalon (I think she's maybe adopted or something :) because my other sister and I wouldn't consider such a thing!) Anyway, I thought that maybe I should try to at least walk in the race this year; I've done it one time before. Anybody want to do it with me?

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Happy New Year

Well, I'm not much on making New Year's Resolutions - mainly because I know I'll have a hard time keeping the ones I really need to make. However, I want 2008 to be different. I'm going to make some resolutions, and by golly, I hope to keep them. I'll need all of the encouragement I can get, so please feel free to ask me questions and keep me accountable!

1. Get in better focus with God: regular quiet/prayer time & focusing on the things he would have as priorities in my life. I need lots of prayer from you guys to get this accomplished. Satan has a way of throwing every stumbling block imaginable when I try to be consistent with my walk.

2. Eat right (and less). I need to lose 15 pounds by this time next year. That's my goal. No excuses. Of course, I think for this to happen, I need to include exercise as a part of this goal. Those of you who know me well know that I would rather have cavities filled than work out.

3. Be more organized. I've got to keep up with cleaning. I really need to do better at knowing everyone's schedule and planning accordingly.

4. Spend less. I am already harping on this one, so I'm on the right track so far. I am really convicted that we need to be more careful with how we spend money. We need to go to Wal-Mart and Target way less and Aldi way more. We need to eat at home and not out (that will help with resolution #2). I've been telling Jacob that the little things will really add up. We need to make every penny count.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Old Friends are Still the Best!

Today I got to have lunch with one of my oldest and dearest friends and her sweet baby girl. It is such fun to spend time catching up on each other's lives. One of the things that makes it so sweet is that it doesn't matter how long it's been since we've talked, we can always pick up right where we left off. Aren't friends like that just the greatest?? I think we spent three hours at Atlanta Break Company; I can't believe that both of our girls were ok with being there that long. I tried to talk her into starting a blog - - maybe she will!

One of my New Year's Resolutions has definitely got to be to stay in better touch with friends that I don't regularly see.

More on New Year's Resolutions in another post . . . . .

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

2007 - Year in Review

January - Jacob loses a tooth

Febrauary - The kids enjoy a snow day.

March - We made a surprise trip to visit cousins in Tennessee.

April - Enjoying Easter Sunday

Spring Sports - Jacob plays soccer

Samuel plays T-Ball

May - Trip to Chicago

(with sister, Ann and good friend, Virginia)

Chicago-style pizza

Samuel says goodbye to Montessori

June - Playing at Silver Dollar City with GrandDaddy

Family Vacation in Colorado

July - Flower Girl and Ring Bearer in cousin James' Wedding

Jacob participated in Music Camp at UBC

August - First Day of School (Jacob - 3rd grade; Samuel - Kindergarten)

Hannah Kate gets her tonsils out!

September - Geocaching at Withrow Springs

Samuel loves soccer

October - Jacob (8) celebrates his birthday with a swimming party.

November - Samuel (6) and Hannah (3) celebrate birthdays.

December - Celebrating Christmas at Ann's house