Saturday, October 29, 2011

Our CORNY Date

We decided it would be fun to go on a theme date.  For the entire month, I was desperately wanting to wander around a corn maze.  I'm not sure they are Casey's favorite thing in the world but he obliged because I was so excited.  So that left me with the choices of either CORN or MAZE for the theme.  We went with corn.

To start our date off, we had CORN chili and {mini} CORNbread muffins.  --As a sidenote: the mini muffin pans were a birthday gift from Casey.  I was super eager to try them out.  They are adorable but needless to say we each probably ate 10.

While we were eating, Casey kept cracking CORNY jokes and we even managed to take this CORNY picture.  Don't laugh too hard--just feel honored you get to see it.  When we turned the camera around and saw we both got a really good chuckle.

For dessert I made candy CORN pudding.  I know it is kind of hard to see but it was actually really fun because the bottom layer is yellow then orange then {a slightly oversized serving of} whip cream

And finally we made it to the CORN maze.  When we left our home, it was still cool/ cold outside and cloudy/ overcast.  So I bundled up.  Needless to say, the sun came out and I never used my coat.  I just kept it tied around my waist--awesome sidenote: I could actually tie it around my waist!!  That was pretty exciting business.  Here is my suggestion though, don't ware crazy thick sweater tights under your jeans if the sun is shining.  My legs were cooking.  Anyway, while in the maze, we only got 50% on the CORN trivia game.  Oh well, it was still good enough to win us free ice cream!

We had a marvelous CORNY date.  And who knows, it might be continued tomorrow or Monday as we watch a CORNY movie and eat popCORN.  LoL!
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P.S. We had so much fun with this maybe next time we will have to pick a different them like CHEESE or something. :)

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Follow-Up to Summer Goals

So remember about 7 months ago when I made a long list of my "Summer Goals?"  I decided to write a follow-up post to it and check off the things that we accomplished.

~Summer Goals~
*Two more states added to our list... bringing the grand total of states we have been to together to 4! :)

* We did NOT end up going to an amusement park. :(  However, we went swimming at a pool that had two huge water slides.  We ran up the stairs so many times that my legs were feeling it by the end of the night.  It {almost} counts.  I guess we still have something to look forward to next year!

* No 5K.  Every time I would go seriously running outside my feet, legs, back, hands, you name it, would be in major pain.  I decided exercise is not supposed to be a miserable, painful experience so I gave this up.  Instead I kept training with The Biggest Looser for Wii, riding my bike and going on walks.

* We went to Iron Mine Campsite and had a marvelous time.  The only downside was because of ALL the rain we got in late spring, several of the hiking trails were still flooded.  We made the best of it anyway.  And I know the picture already says this but allow me just to emphasize.  I am seriously majorly addicted to campfire popcorn.  We had no idea what we were doing and quickly decided to cover the pan with a tin plate--good idea because shortly there after, it started popping and it would have been all over the place.  I am SO, SOOOO excited for another campfire when we can make this yummy treat again!

* We went swimming.  I did not go every day like I had hoped but we at least went!

* Lesson planning for sure happened.  I was totally motivated in June and August.  July I did almost nothing.  Funny how as much as I planned though, I still feel completely behind.  We also spent some MAJOR time cleaning and CLEANING my classrooms--as well as decorating.

* We moved.  It is (1) a lot of work and (2) super expensive so we hope to stay put for a long time yet.  I love our new apartment!!!  Our ward is very sweet.  We have very well covered parking--no more scraping windows, our own washer & dryer, a second bedroom, AND a storage shed.  Yup, totally living the dream life right here!! :)

* July was filled with parades and fireworks in celebration of Independence Day and Pioneer Day.  Fireworks are one of my favorite things to watch--and it was even better that we could see a HUGE show right from our balcony!

* And it was so nice to catch up with my little sister again.  We had her over for dinner several times--I'm pretty sure she ate more vegetables at our house those few times than she probably ate the entire year at college... LoL!  We went to iWorlds on a mission with her being part of the crew, painted each others' toes, ate more snowcones than I care to admit, walked around fairs & watched fireworks, watched movies, had a sleep over and she helped us move.  Golly I miss her... Julie--hurry up and finish your degree in your far away land so you can live close to us again!


~Other Summer Fun~
* Hiked the Y, Ensign Peak, Ceret Lake (which ended up being more like boulder hopping) and other random trails.

* Probably went on a weekly picnic--if not daily sometimes, enjoyed several long bike rides together, played tennis and many other active/ outdoors activities.

* Met The Biggest Looser season 11 pink and grey team and I continued to work on my own TBL challenge.  AND my hair under went some drastic changes.

* We listened to a concert at the BYU bell tower and ate J Dawgs--two must do's before you leave Provo.

* Vacationed in St. George which included several ice cream splurges, visiting the temple, shopping, eating out, and sleeping in a motel.  (Sidenote: this was actually fall break but whatever...)



~It was 100% a WONDERFUL summer.  I'm so grateful we have so many wonderful memories to cherish!!!~
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Living a BUSY Life

Um... since when did I become a once a week (if that) blog writer?  What happened?!

Well, teaching sure keeps me busy.  There are so many thousands of hilarious stories I wish I could share but can't.  Everything I post, I make sure I am ok with all my students, parents of students and the whole world reading.  If I think someone would have a problem with it, I don't share.

Anyway... to add to my lack of posting, it was fall break this past week and we went on VACATION!  It was SO nice to break away from the business of life and to just enjoy being together again.  I remembered how much I love being with my handsome hubby constantly and holding hands all the time.  I realized, my hand missed holding his but our time together is limited and we generally don't hold hands while we are eating dinner.  I also enjoyed eating out and snacking on car munchies and splurging with lots of ice cream.  I did however pay for this with about a 3 pound gain from the past week.  Oh well.  I only have one fall break a year!!  I will have to post pictures about this (hopefully soon).

We have also been busy decorating for Halloween and enjoying the deliciousness of fall--meaning pumpkin.  I have found several amazing pumpkin treats--some not so healthy but some are very healthy--another post I should write about.

And that is about all the time I have right now.  We are off to regional stake conference.  I decided yesterday night that adults still have firesides too.  It is just that we call them adult stake conference instead of the cute "fireside" phrase for youth.
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Friday, October 7, 2011

Its the Little Things

I have been thinking about the little things.  Little things have the power to change a cloudy day to a sun shining in your soul day.  The little things can get you out of your grumpy pants and into you happy face.  Little things don't just make a difference--they are the difference.

Little things I'm grateful for:

  • Being able to control the heat in my classroom.  When most people walk into my room, they assume the heater has one setting--blasting hot.  But really, I have total control over it.  I call it opening and closing the window.  I'm grateful for heat.  But I'm really grateful for a window!
     
  • Jackets.  A simple thing really.  But when you had to face yesterday with no blasting heat, a window that was stuck open (luckily the janitor came and fixed that fairly quickly!), the first snow of the season, and only a light windbreaker about 3 sizes too big, all of the sudden, jackets are your favorite thing.  I now have two jackets just hanging out in my closet at school--just in case.
     
  • Going lab shopping with my mom.  Ok.  Lets be honest.  Shopping for my classes for labs is not my favorite thing.  But when I get to wander around the stores with my second best friend and chatter non-stop, it really isn't so bad anymore.  And it gets even better because she volunteered to go back to my school and help carry in all the groceries.  Score!
     
  • Waking up cold.  I'm so done waking up in the middle of the night and sweating.  I would try cranking up the fan but then the extreme wind tunnel noise would prevent me from going back to sleep and so I would lay there and sweat.  Last night when I woke up cold; simple fix.  Quickly spread the blanket--which was right by my bed, I was prepared for such emergencies--over me and back to sleep I fall.
     
  • Microwave Cake and Little Cesar's bread sticks.  Confession--I ate both today.  And not something that is really helping me to slim down at all.  But there are days when school is long.  The faculty meeting is long.  And then there is still a ton of things to do before I leave for the weekend.  Yup, pretty sure days like today call for a nice break from life.  And breaks include (but are not limited too) cake, bread sticks and girl time with one of my teacher friends.  (She is a first year too and so we can empathize together!)
 
See... life really is about finding the little things and then cherishing every moment of them!

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

To My Fairy,

Dear Teacher Fairy,

THANK YOU!  I have no idea who you are.  I tried asking the secretaries at my school (because everyone knows that the secretaries know everything) and they said they have never seen you before--except when you brought flowers during the first week of school.  But you obviously know me because the flowers are beautiful.  And they smell A.mazing!

I seriously almost squealed when the office aid came in my room with flowers today telling me they were from The Birthday Fairy.

Thank you for remembering me.  Thank you for caring about me.  Thank you for making me feel special on MY most special day of the year!

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P.S. I know 100% certain it is not my mom or hubby--both are completely off my suspect list. :)
P.P.S.  THANK YOU AGAIN my fairy friend!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Recognize Me?

So first of all... the title of this post has meaning.  On Monday, I ran into one of our favorite high school teachers.  This is a teacher that we have kept in contact with and are now on a first name basis with.  And since we are both employees in the same district, I talk to this teacher on IM occasionally asking for help or ideas.  Anyway, when I called out this teacher's name, he had NO idea who I was and just stared at me.  I could not figure out why he was staring at me.  After awhile, I finally figured out that he did not recognize me.

But, I guess I wouldn't recognize me either if I didn't see myself everyday.

Currently, weight loss to date is -93 pounds!! :)  I'm SO close to being in the "normal" bmi range--you have NO idea how excited I am and how hard I have worked to get here!

And please note: this picture is not an accurate one showing the difference in my size.  We moved and our doors are different sizes.  The door I'm standing in front of today (red shirt) is is a double french folding door. It is MUCH more narrow than our front door at our old apartment.  Oh well, hopefully you get the idea.


And below are all of my "weigh-in" pictures... just so you can easily see the journey, if you want.

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Brief Tidbits

I thought I would write a blog catch-up.  School keeps us both super busy!  This past week, I was in the process of writing a test for my kids to take next week and Casey was busy taking them.  Allow me just to say that both take a lot of time.

Yesterday, for date night we went to a delicious Thai Restaurant.  We had a buy one get one free coupon so that was nice!  Then as we were driving towards the temple, we stopped at Arctic Circle and bought a pumpkin pie shake to share.  I LOVE fall and all that it brings but especially the yummy pumpkin treats.

Also yesterday, we had to survive the 90* heat without air conditioning.  First of all, 90* really?!  It was the last day of September!!  And I remember it snowing before on my birthday growing up.  (Just in case you don't know, my birthday is this coming Tuesday--Oct. 4.  I would love presents and gift cards and flowers... hee, hee, hee)  So the weather is still acting more like summer than like fall.  And without the air conditioning... let's just say my shirt was totally sweaty.  Gross, I know.  And some of my students wanted me to turn the fans off because it was too windy.  I made a compromise and turned them down a bit but there was no way they were going off.

I had my first administration observation this past week.  Luckily it seemed to go pretty well.  It was in a more challenging class but at the same time not my worst class.  There are still several things that I can improve on but there were also several things that went really well.

The next day, another admin was in my room.  The observations are done on an iPad and since I didn't see one, I just assumed he was in there to help me control the masses (aka my most challenging class).  I have heard other teachers say that they hope the admin never go into their worst class because it makes them look bad as a teacher.  By this point, I honestly did not care how terrible of a teacher I appeared to be; I was just grateful that he was in there because I desperately need help with that period.  And it was a miracle, just having him sit in my room, the students improved their behavior significantly.  They were still crazy and the admin couldn't believe how wild they were.  I told him this was a good day.  And it was really nice having him in there when I had huge problems with one of the students.  After I tried sending the student out to the hall, with a huge refusal, the admin was able to take care of the problem.  My student still refused to leave but it became his problem instead of mine.

If I could only share all the details of that story with the student refusing to leave.  It really is hilarious--most days at school have moments so frustrating and patience trying that you just have to laugh.

Lastly, I finally got my first teacher paycheck.  I looked at the amount taken out for taxes and was honestly just shocked because that amount is normally the total amount I have been paid in the past.  I knew what my salary was and we had even figured out how much it would be monthly.  So it shouldn't have been a shock but it was.  There is just something magical about seeing your first paycheck! :)

I am really looking forward to General Conference today! :D  I recently finished reading all the talks from my past conference Ensign.  And it is time for another.  I'm interested to see what the themes are and ready to learn what Heavenly Father wants me to know.  I love having a prophet to lead and guide me (and everyone) today!
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