Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Back to School News

Yes, I'm still here. School has started once again, need I say more?

The last two weeks of my summer were jam-packed with everything I could have possibly crammed into it before I started back to school.

I'll give the quick run-down of those two weeks for those keeping track of my life from afar:
-Jeremy (Gina's husband) turned 40, which spurred me on to finish his OU quilt from 3 Christmases ago. I'm happy to say that it turned out really well. Unfortunately, I didn't snag any pictures. Instead of paying the $100+ it would have cost to teach myself how to use the quilting machine at the quilt store, I decided to shell out the big bucks to have someone do that for me. I definitely wasn't disappointed! However, I did decide to make the binding myself. I should say that it was a task in and of itself. I cussed, cried, and was generally frustrated for the better part of the binding construction, but when I finally finished it, I was so proud of myself! Jeremy couldn't believe it when I brought it over to him, I think he had lost hope. Oh well, one more thing off my plate!

-For Andy's birthday, I took him on a day-long trip to Stillwater to visit OSU and get school supplies. It was the first time he and I had a day to ourselves in a long while. We walked ALL over campus, and he thoroughly enjoyed himself. I think we just might have a Cowboy in the making...he has already told me how beautiful of a campus it was and how much he wants to go there! He also told me that that was the best day of his life ever. At one point, he leaned over, hugged me, and thanked me for our day of fun. My love bucket ran over that day!!! :)

-I was able to catch up with lots of friends! I was able to see and talk to Katie (who's living in Chicago and loving life), Maria (who is always such a kind, joyful person!), Rebecca (who's always a bright spot in my life), Nick (who is Thomas's best man and a fun person in general), and, best of all, Tonisha (my best friend ever :) )! My heart was overflowing with joy with seeing some of my favorite people!

-I also took Evan on a tour of OSU. He's planning on transferring there next year to study Landscape Design and Sustainable Horticulture. He too was in awe of campus. I'd like to think I'm just doing a fantastic job of showing off the campus, but I know first-hand that it really just has a way of selling itself...ask me how I know! :) I loved having an evening to catch up and just chat with Evan. He is wise beyond his years and is a light to me. Our trip wasn't without event, as I got a flat tire, and he saved the day by changing it for me. What a trip!

I know I'm missing lots of other stuff, but those were the high points. We were back in school for in-service days the first full week of August. We started classes on the 10th, so we're already most of the way through our third week of school. Sheesh! So far my second year is going much better for me. I feel much more confident than I did last year at this time. Obviously, I know pretty much all of what I'm doing know, from a curriculum standpoint. I'm also a little more confident from a classroom management standpoint. I guess you could say it's easier for me to be "mean" this year than it was last year. I mean, I'm definitely not a dictator, but I like to think it's coming a little more naturally for me to be authoritative in my classroom, as I should be.

Along with Algebra I/II and Geometry, I am teaching a Consumer Math class this year. It is showing lots of promise, as it is practical, real-world math that I wish I could teach to the majority of my students. The kids love it, because they actually can see an application to what we're doing. I'm also planning on bringing in professionals throughout the year. Here's hoping!

On the first day of school alone, I had four students tell me they didn't want me to leave after this year. That filled my love bucket. So did seeing a few kids tell me on their first-week survey that they wanted me to stay. My heart is full already, and I wouldn't be surprised if I'm a blubbery mess at the end of the year. Let's hope not, but I'm just putting that out there. Last week, I had an unexpected bit of good news. To be vague, but informative, I found out that one of my bigger classes was going to be split into two separate sections, only one of which I would teach. It was a huge sigh of relief for me. This week has really been one of my better weeks of teaching in quite some time. I'm so glad for that, because I was starting to question whether or not I was really supposed to be teaching. I have a renewed sense of enthusiasm for this year, so let's just hope and pray that it stays that way. On a separate note, I love my co-workers...they make my job even better. I'm REALLY going to miss them after this year.

In the time since school has started, we've celebrated Gina's birthday with unseasonably cool weather and a fun cake, Thomas and I attended our pre-Cana day for marriage prep (kinda anticlimactic, but oh well), and I've scheduled a dress shopping appointment! Huge things! Also, this weekend, Thomas and I will be traveling down to Dallas for a Coldplay concert. I'm beyond pumped about it!!!

Big things are happening all around! Unfortunately, I need to cut it off here so I can do some grading. Ugh, I'm always behind on grading ever since we changed our time schedule...we now go from 8-3:45 every day, and we start our four-day weeks this week, so no Friday for me! I know it'll be great, but there's definitely been an adjustment. Okay, no more procrastination for me...we'll talk next time, hopefully without as much waiting! Have a great week!!!