Thursday, August 29, 2013

School Days...

The week is almost over and I finally have some time to myself! I feel like I have been working, playing with the kids, planning, eating, or sleeping with very little time to sit down and just veg for a minute.

So school.

It's hard to really judge the school year based on one week, but, if this week is an indication, this year will be great. We have a new principal; she is young, and energetic, and seems to be just what we need. She definitely has a new vision for the school- one that, I think, will bring about a lot of positive change in the next months. I am excited to be the new SGA co-adviser with Tom, and the class of 2017 co-adviser. We had our first SGA meeting today and had 23 kids come! We were only going to have a brief planning meeting and ended up meeting for 45 minutes! The kids wouldn't stop talking-- it was awesome-- a steady flow of ideas, concerns, dreams of what our school can be. I am so energized by the excitement and passion that these kids are showing for their school. It makes me feel like things are moving in the right direction.

Class-wise, my schedule seems great (I feel like the silly TV chefs who overuse superlatives...great! wonderful! delicious! (ok, maybe not delicious)). The schedule itself flows well, and my classes (thus far) are motivated. I am enjoying my AP classes. The kids are excited for discussions, which always makes me happy! One of my students asked if we could analyze more political cartoons (we did yesterday) today because he enjoyed it. My honors classes need a bit of work because they are coming off a year of long term subs. In class surveys, they expressed the desire to be better writers (no joke, almost all of the kids wrote something about being a better writer), so I am going to gear lessons toward the writing process. I do love teaching tenth graders-- however, I don't know how much longer I want to teach the curriculum. I am getting a bit tired of ole' Oedipus. Next year might be time for a change. My final class is American Lit. I have never taught 11th grade outside of AP before, so this is a new experience. I am really enjoying this class though. My students are tired in the morning (1st period), but they are willing to participate and seem like a group of good kids.

So...all of this rambling...right now this year feels like one I need. Last  year was something of a mess around school, so starting the year fresh (in many ways) was necessary. I always say I feel so lucky to have such wonderful colleagues, and that, again, holds true. I work with a phenomenal group of people. Truly. Work is just better because they are there. And funny. And bring chocolate.

That is my first week assessment. I miss my kids (my own kids) terribly when I am away. I do wish I could be a mom who gets to stay home; however, working as a teacher is something I always wanted to do, to be, and my work is (typically) quite fulfilling. Here;s to the 2013-2014 school year and the adventure it brings! I am sure I will have more stories as we work through the year!!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Quick Updates

I am barely functioning by 2:30pm, so updates to the blog have been, well, sparse. Things have gotten much busier with the start of school, so as I adjust to the new routine the blog will likely be quieter than normal.

Our goings on...

School is going well! Things are busy and getting used to the routine is hard, but everything is going smoothly. I want to write a longer post dedicated to going back to work, but that is going to need to write (as writing a coherent sentence is a bit challenging after a busy day...).

Lily and Jack and are doing well. Jack started solids and loves his fruits (so far). He is enjoyed bananas and pears. He tried peas a few days ago, and is still trying to acquire a taste for them. Lily is talking up a storm. Her new favorite movie is Charlotte's Web. She requests the pig every afternoon. She also thinks there is a dinosaur in the pig movie. There is not.

I am an exhausted excuse of a person. Jack has been sleeping a bit better, but even one middle of the night wake-up coupled with my 5am wake-up is taking a toll. Once I finally sit down in the afternoon, I realize how mentally and physically exhausted I really am...

I will get around to writing a more substantial update later this week...until then...enjoy your Thursday and Friday!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Jack is 6 months old...

Somehow, my son is half a year old. WHAT? When did that happen? He was just born. Seriously. Now he is 6 months old. Today, he is closer to 1 than to the day he is born. HOLD ME.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Brain is Numb

I wanted to write a really nice blog post tonight...but I feel like this..

 photo gifofsleep_zps516c267d.gif

So I will leave you with some outtakes of Lily. Sorry, Lily, I couldn't find any good Jack outtakes.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

26 Months

Ok, I don't know how to mark these age posts anymore. Does 26 months sound weird? Also, I feel like Lily is growing up so quickly, and then I think, "wow, she has only been in the world for 26 months." It feels like she has been here forever!

At 26 months Lily loves...

1. ...singing. Girlfriend can sing "Twinkle, twinkle", "Row, row, row your boat...", parts of "Baby Beluga", and the list goes on...
2. ...the song "Baby Beluga". It sounds more like BABY! BLUE-DUH!
3. ...The Wiggles. Especially the new Wiggles.
4. ...dinosaurs. RAWR!
5. ...Toy Story 3. Loves the movie more than anything. 
6. ...seeing and playing with her friends!
7. ...painting and doing hand prints.
8. ...popsicles! Especially the blue ones.
9. ...burying herself in the sand.
10. ...and, of course, mama and dada.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Mommy Monday!

This week, I am linking up with Simply Just Lovely for Mommy Mondays. Jack tried a sippy this week! He also tried some pears. Needless to say, I got some priceless shots of his confused face when he was trying new things. I also got some great pictures of Lily when she was...well...just being a silly 2 year old!

I could get used to this cup...

I love to chew the spout!

Uhhh what?

I don't know how I feel about this. (Yes, the bib is a girl one, it was closest to me, so I used it. Sorry, Jackson.)

Ok, mom, really?

All done! And happy!

My chunk.
Lily's new obsession is Toy Story 3. The following are faces she made in conjunction to the move:

Me: Lily, show me the face Woody makes when he's sad.

Me: Lily, show me the face Woody makes when he's happy.

Me: Lily, what does Rex say? Lily: RAWR! (arms to show T-Rex dinosaurs have short arms)

Up close watching her favorite movie.

Friday, August 16, 2013

It's Upon Us...

Well, back-to-school is upon us. I meet this year with very mixed feelings. Our school is undergoing some major changes-- changes related to the new implementation of the common core and teacher evaluation system-- and changes related to a new principal. I am excited for some of the changes. I am definitely motivated by the immediate changes that will be happening within the school. I am a little...nervous?...apprehensive?...about common core and the teacher evaluation system. There are so many unknowns. I am hoping this isn't viewed as the quick fix to public education, as I see it taking years for its success to truly be measured. We will see.

I am excited to get back in the school routine. To see my friends and co-workers again. To be in my room with my students again. I can't wait to supply shop and make my room my own again this year. I am looking forward to being the new SGA co-adviser. I am also looking forward to co-advising the class of 2017. There is going to be a little more on my plate school-wise this year, which is nice because I do like to be involved around the building. I think it is so important for teachers to be visible to their students in capacities other than classroom teacher.

This school year I also need to begin (again!) taking graduate classes. I am hoping to finish my equivalency in the next two years. I don't know when I will officially finish my master's degree; probably once my kids are a little bigger. Right now, I just can't commit to a super time consuming program. And, once I do commit, I want to give it my all. I know with two small kids that wouldn't be possible.

Lily goes back to Mother's Day Out this fall. She really started to enjoy it toward the end of her summer session, so I am hoping this fall she grows to love "school" even more. I am hoping to find a swimming program for her to take on the weekend. Our September schedule is already filling up, so we'll see what I can find to work in!

I know this year will be crazy, but I think I am getting better and better at balancing home and work. I  know I will need to be even better at grading during school hours and trying not to bring as much home (unless, by some miracle, Jack learns to love naps). I think, as a teacher, I am constantly evaluating myself and trying to evolve into a better version of myself. At least, I hope I am.

Come Monday, I know leaving the house will be hard. I will miss my kids and their silliness. I will miss lazy mornings. I will miss Lily's antics and Jack's smiles. I know, however, that I will come home to big a "MAMA BACK!" and hugs, smiles, and kisses. This time of year is always a little hard when it comes to leaving my kiddies.

I do welcome the school year with optimism and excitement. I know not every day will be easy. I know that. I also know that many good things are coming our way this year, and I embrace those new things. To all my teacher friends- good luck this year! I hope that you have a wonderful year!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Vacation 2013

Warning! This is a picture heavy post!!

We are home! I bet you all missed me.

All 10 of you. 

We spent a week in Fenwick Island, DE. It was wonderful. We stayed with my parents in a condo by the bay. We could see the bay from our balcony. Lily loved watching the birds and the boats. She discovered she could open the door, so, when it was unlocked, she would let herself in and out.

Our house was pretty spacious. It had two master bedrooms. We had the master was a huge tub and a big walk-in closet. Lily slept in her pack and play in the walk-in closet. My mom's idea, but Lily LOVED it. She slept like a rock in there, probably because it was so dark! Jack slept in a pack and play next to us. And by slept in the pack and play, I mean, slept in the pack and play for a bit, then came into our bed when he couldn't sleep. He is still working on sleeping. It is a slow process.

We spent three days on the beach. Jack did an awesome job on the beach on Sunday. He rolled around on the big blanket and even napped in my arms. Lily liked the beach so much more this year. She did not like the water, I think the waves scared her, but she loved the sand! She buried herself in it. She made sandcastles (and by made I mean destroyed). She generally loved playing with the sand.

We went to the Bethany boardwalk and the Rehoboth boardwalk. Tom and I had a date night (we went to Liquid Assets. It was awesome. Huge shout out to Tim for the recommendation!). We did family dinners both in and out. Lily enjoyed the playground in the community where we stayed and the playground at Northside Park.

I will probably write a little more about some funny Lily things later. Jack is not having a good time sleeping tonight, so I am writing this between checking on him. Here are some pictures of our time downy oshun!

Pinky's up for donuts!

Check out my shades.

Buried in the sand.

Our family :-)

Our view!

Building castles. Except building means destroying.

Pretending to sleep.

Finally! A good one of Lily and poppy.

Us again. Jack is half asleep in the Ergo.

Oh. Hey Jack.

Just rolling away.

Love, love.