Thursday, October 30, 2008

happiness is...

...coming home from work to some delicious Tortilla Soup!
I love the Crock-pot!


Most people are sound asleep at 12:30 in the morning. Some are up tending to babies. Others might work during this late/early hour. I should be snuggled in my bed with pleasant dreams filling my mind. My alarm goes off 5 hours later, so it would make sense to be sleeping. Alas, this is not what life is like for this teacher. Instead, last night, I found myself tossing and turning (and trying to ignore Ben's snoring). My head was full of ideas. Honestly, I think I do my best brainstorming between 10:30pm and 2:00am. Go figure.

At 12:30 last night/this morning, I was trying to work out the logistics of our upcoming pep assembly. Finally, I pulled out my cell phone and typed up some of these ideas...pies, staff members, 8th grade athletes, the Ram mascot, relay races, trivia questions, food toss, Young Life games, and prizes.

You see, this is the life of a teacher that is hardly recognized. I know some folks think that teaching is a great gig - summers off, shorter hours during the day, great benefits. While those things are nice, I think it's important to note that for 10 months out of the year, my mind is constantly racing! Do you know what it's like to take your work home with you (whether you want to or not)? Do you know what it's like to wake up several times throughout the night with possible solutions for Johnny's inappropriate behavior? Do you know what it's like to hear a voice in the back of your head repeatedly nagging at you because there's more grading to complete? Do you know what it's like to work at all sorts of crazy hours? (One year I attempted to keep track of my hours. I did this so I would have some ammunition the next time someone ranted and raved about how "cake" teaching can be. The large numbers quickly became depressing, so I quit adding them all up.) Vacation time like Spring Break and Christmas Break are wonderful indeed. Unfortunately, it takes a few days to even slip into a vacation mode. Chances are, I'm still going to have to do some planning and some grading.

At the same time, I wouldn't trade-in the chaos of these 10 months for anything in the world! I have one of the greatest jobs on planet earth! I get to spend time with 7th graders! They are humorous, obnoxious, lovable, frustrating, challenging, rewarding, uplifting, draining, remarkable, enlightening, intelligent, humble, boastful, loud, silly, and intriguing! Each day I am greeted with new adventures. I am so blessed!

Although I've slept for only a few hours, I come to work eager to see the smiling faces that await me each day. I want them to feel loved and appreciated. I want them to know what it's like to be in a place where you are valued. So, I put on a smile - not a fake one. No, it's a tired smile, but I wear it out of gratitude. They deserve at least that much. In the end, I am thankful for all of the day's challenges in room 212. I wouldn't have it any other way!

P.S. Today we're making a graveyard for all of the overused words found within their writing - Dead Words as we call them. How cool is my job? :)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

i love...

...the Duggars!

Wow, they are super conservative and I don't quite understand the desire to have 17 (soon-to-be 18) kids. However, they are still so much fun to watch...their hair, the outfits, the homeschooling, all of the "J" names, and romances. Really, what's not to love?

Check 'em out!

P.S. I wonder what non-believers think of this family...and Christians in general!?!? Do they know that not all of us are this extreme?

Friday, October 24, 2008

brace yourself...

A Friday Night at the Simmons' House (really, it's just a condo)
  • I laid down around 4:30 to take a quick nap
  • Talked to my dad for a bit
  • Ben talked to his mom (about the twins and all)
  • Didn't really sleep due to the conversations taking place - no big deal
  • Ben made me a sandwich for dinner...I told him I didn't really feel like cooking (cute, huh?)
  • Convinced Ben to come talk to me while I was attempting to get out of bed
  • Ben fell asleep around 6:30
  • I ate my yummy sandwich while Ben slept
  • Packed-up my school stuff (Master's class) and headed to the library - I needed to get away from the distractions here at home. 3 papers need to be written and 2 discussions need to be posted. I must work on it all this weekend!
  • Library was closed
  • Relocated to Safeway - they have free WiFi
  • Realized I didn't bring the right stuff for my class...LAME
  • Graded vocabulary quizzes instead
  • Called Ben on my way back home and he was still sleeping. I told him to take out his contacts...then go back to sleep if he still wanted to.
  • Came home to a cute husband nestled in bed
  • Sat on the couch, read through some blogs, watched a taped episode of Ace of Cakes, checked my email, Facebook and MySpace
  • Never even considered working on the Master's class crap again!
  • Now I'm thinking about heading to bed myself. I will be up tomorrow fairly early for a trip into Seattle. 4 of us (7th grade teachers) are meeting to take the Seattle Underground Tour. We're planning a field trip for the spring and in order to write up some grants, we want to know exactly what to expect. I'm excited!

(We were supposed to go see the twins tomorrow - they're both home - but that will have to wait until next weekend. Emily and Ryan have been showered with support and you can only fit so many people into their house at once. So, we will patiently wait for our chance to hang out with the girls. They're just so cute...)

Monday, October 20, 2008

fabric feedback...

I need your help! I would love to know where you purchase your fabric. Right now I'm looking for some cute, more modern choices and Joann's just isn't cutting it (they hardly ever have anything worth purchasing). So, I come to you seeking feedback. I've been looking online and I've listed a few of the sites I've visited recently. Perhaps you've purchased from them before...and if so, let me know what you think. (super expensive) (all sorts of goodies) (a random assortment) (surprisingly there's lots to choose from...and their prices aren't so bad)

Thanks for your help!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

a song worth sharing...

I don't necessarily feel like I'm in a season of "waiting," but this song is still so beautifully written. I figured I should share it now in case someone out there is "waiting"...

While I’m Waiting

Psalm 5:3, 27:14, 33:20, 37:7, 38:15, 40:1, Isaiah 30:18, Lamentations 3:24

-John Waller

"The explanation for this song is simple, I was waiting on God and I was hurting when I wrote the lyrics. I probably wouldn’t have written a song if my friend, Mike, hadn’t encouraged me to document what I was going through during that time. I’m sure there are few people who can’t relate to this song, but the important thing to remember while we’re waiting on God is to not just wait but to actively wait. Serve, worship and be faithful with what you have, where you are…even while (you) wait.”

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am hopeful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it is painful
But patiently, I will wait

I will move ahead, bold and confident
Taking every step in obedience

While I’m waiting
I will serve You
While I’m waiting
I will worship
While I’m waiting
I will not faint
I’ll be running the race
Even while I wait

I’m waiting
I’m waiting on You, Lord
And I am peaceful
I’m waiting on You, Lord
Though it’s not easy
But faithfully, I will wait
Yes, I will wait

I will serve You while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting
I will serve You while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting
I will serve You while I’m waiting
I will worship while I’m waiting on You, Lord

© 2007 Travelin’ Zoo Music (ASCAP) (admin. by EMI CMG Publishing)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

movie update...

Not long ago, Kara and I were talking about this movie. We joked that it would probably be a "cheesy Christian movie."

Let me back up a bit...I absolutely Kirk Cameron and he was one of my first loves (think Growing Pains era). Our church reserved a theater and watched it on opening night. Ben and I didn't go...they ran out of tickets before we could purchase ours. Since then, we haven't run into anyone else who has seen the film. That didn't matter...

Last weekend we decided to hit up AMC in F-dub and watch the movie...along with 3 other people (that's it...the theater was nearly empty). The cheesy factor was heavily present. However, the Truth behind it all was so real. The movie is about an unbelieving couple and their struggles in marriage.

Regardless of your martial status, I would recommend this film. (I might regret this later...once someone actually views the movie.) The dilemmas these characters face are real and the Truth is just as real. Ben and I actually left the theater talking about our marriage and what it looks like in the eyes of Christ. It was just so refreshing to leave a movie and talk about meaningful insight and what truly matters in life.

It was NOT a waste of our time! (Although Kara and I might have been right.)

P.S. This film was put together by a people volunteer to act, and help behind the scenes. Keep that in mind while watching it. :) Oh, and Kirk Cameron is still as cute as ever...and he loves Jesus!

Monday, October 13, 2008

so excited (and in no particular order)...

...Ben and I finally decided it was time to get new cell phones. His was only working on speakerphone and even that was starting to fade. Talking to him was a nightmare. You could barely hear him, the sound was all broken up, and the annoyance was a bit too much to handle. Now we're super cool because we have iPhones. (At least we think they're cool.) :)

...I'm doing a Beth Moore study with some women at my church. We're working through, A Woman's Heart - God's Dwelling Place. We're only at week 1 and already I'm enjoying it. Honestly, I can't imagine a Bible Study of hers that wouldn't be enjoyable...and challenging.

...Laura is coming into town this weekend. She's flying in for my birthday. Can you believe it? She had planned it as a surprise, but I figured it out. I'm so smart (and maybe she forwarded me an email with a message that I wasn't supposed to see). :) I don't know how I'm supposed to top this for her birthday in January.

...Emily and Ryan's babies will most likely get to come home this week. They are growing like weeds and well past the 5 pound mark. We are so thankful that they are healthy and developing as they should. :)

Ella on the right, Evie on the tiny and so sweet! I love them so much already...and they are only a few weeks old! :)