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Thursday, December 30, 2010

bumps

So today I ventured to Tucson to finish Jameson's registry and to buy more maternity clothes as my pre-preggo wardrobe is getting harder and harder to fit into as each day passes. Both events were slightly disappointing. First the maternity clothes.

I like to think of myself as a somewhat fashionable and was dreading the fact that I may have to put that to the side during my pregnancy. I stumbled upon H&M in New York over the summer and was super excited to see one open up in Tucson. They have super cute and fashionable clothing for super affordable and this fashionista is and forever will be a hardcore shopper who has to do it within reason so I love that this store marries the two--super cute with super affordable. While I love that they are very affordable I also love that they have a maternity section. When I stumbled upon this find I thought, "My prayers have been answered...I don't have to give up being fashionable just because certain parts of me are getting bigger." Now, granted the maternity section is literally a small section of a wall thrown in between baby gear and the entire section would probably fit into my closet...I was still super excited. That is..until today. I've bought maternity clothes from here previously and had a lot more success but now that I've gotten more baby shall we say and today was not a good day. As my mom and her friend were passing me clothes in the fitting room, we noticed a trend of me needing a size large. This instantly reduced me to tears and a quiet crying in the fitting room while I'm squeezing into pants too small or putting on tops too big. I know there is nothing wrong with needing to wear a size large but for someone who hasn't ever needed to buy a shirt or sweater in size large unless it was a sweatshirt it was quite jarring. Out of all of the things I tried on I ended up with a blue and white pin stripe shirt and black dress pants that I can wear to work. I was so upset that all I wanted to do was pay and get out of the store and mall.

It's time for a bathroom break and I end up sitting on the fountain in the middle of the mall crying to my mom about how I'm not one of those cute pregnant ladies. I'm actually ugly and huge and so not cute. My mom is trying to explain to me that buying larger clothes doesn't mean anything bad all it means is I'm going to grow and if I buy bigger now it'll save me money and time down the road. I know she's right but again...all I can think of is how huge I am and how ugly I am. She assures me I'm neither and asks me if I think other pregnant ladies are ugly and I say of course not...they're ALL cute...it's just me.

Anyway, she coaxes me to going into Motherhood to look for more clothes and she and her friend were literally running circles around the store pulling anything cute. I ended up with a decently sized wardrobe that can be mixed and matched and will last me until this baby decides to enter the world. It did help that they had a baby bump that I could put on and once I did that I understood the point of buying larger sized clothes. All stores that offer a maternity section should have these pretend baby bumps. It just makes the process much easier and more satisfying.

I know that I'm not fat I just have baby but it's very hard to see your body change and grow when you're not used to it or when you don't always feel so cute and pretty pre-preggoness. I know that this is only temporary and the gain is so worth the changes but it still doesn't make it any easier..at least not for this mommy-to-be.

Now...on to the registry. After leaving the mall with a decidedly cute wardrobe we made our way over to Babies R' Us to complete the registry only to find it closed due to a gas leak. Seriously...not the way to end the day. Oh well, guess this will have to wait until later in January.

I will say I'm so glad my mom was there to talk me off the ledge. I know I'm hormonal but she gets and understands me and is there to offer encouragement and rub my back when I'm crying in the middle of the mall. You're never to old for your mom.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

make over

No, this isn't a post about me making myself over, although I have had the urge to dye my hair chocolaty brown for a few weeks now and cut it off in a new cute do but they say this urge strikes in pregnancy and to ignore it until you turn into your sane self again. No, this post is about the make over to my 2nd classroom which really was just my junk room and is now going to be turned into Jameson's room.

We've been in this house for I think 2.5-3 years now and my room slowly became a landmine. It was fine and manageable until I was finally evicted from my parent's house and all the junk that was in my room there was put into boxes and brought to this house. Then the weekend we got married we hosted a family BBQ and Robert and his mom and brother David cleaned the house and put all of the junk into the closet and somehow more junk just accumulated. There was literally a path from the door of the room to my computer. No room to move around. Nonetheless, with baby Jameson on the way it was time to get it together and cleaned. And I've been having insane moments where I just need to clean. So cleaning out his room seemed fitting since I've got 2 weeks off of school and I've been needing to get it done. I imagined stretching it out over the 2 weeks, doing a little here and a little there but no..this insane pregnant person has taken over my body and the room was cleaned out in 6 hours. The process made the room look like a hoarder's fantasy.

Now when I'm cleaning or organizing I usually will debate over every item deciding if it REALLY needs to go or if I could somehow use it again...well not this time. If I hadn't touched it in the time I've been in this house it was gone. I have 7 boxes of books that I need to take to Bookman's. I found all of my college papers and a pair of mittens I've been searching for for years. Three giant black Glad bags of trash later and two giant black Glad bags of donations the room is finally organized and cleaned. It's ready for me to move my junk out of and start painting and decorating, which I'm so excite to do. His room is going to be super cute! The only hold up is my hubby's man cave. It desperately needs to be cleaned out and organized...which may be my project next week. Wish me luck...

Here's the mess and madness that was Jameson's room.



This was the view from the door when you first came in.





Here's Lady wondering what mom is doing.





When I stopped to take a picture of the mess coming from the closet. It was literally packed up to the shelf inside. This was just the beginning of unloading that baby.






Here is the room after the 6 hours of madness. The pile on the chest needs to go to my classroom. Apollo says "Wow, I had no idea you could lay down in this room. We've had him for 2 years and this is the first time he's been able to lay down in here. Don't judge me.






Here's the closet now. The stuff on the right of the picture starting with the blue hamper is stuff we already have for Jameson...clothes and books. The pile in the middle with the gray cart and box needs to go to my classroom. And the pile on the left with the Pyrex box and beyond is stuff that needs to go out into our storage shed. The stuffed animals which can't be seen in this picture are getting bagged and donated.

Monday, December 20, 2010

a baby story

So last week was incredibly insane with work so I didn't have the time I wanted to to sit down and write about our dr.'s appointment. So here it is.


Last Wednesday, we had our 21 week appt. plus the ultrasound to find out what our baby was/is..I guess. I had told my kiddos on Monday that they'd get to find out on Thursday morning what the baby was and they were so excited. All I could hear was "oooh, I hope it's a girl" from all of 1st grade ladies...the boys could care less. One of my girls even told me that she had baby girl and baby boys clothes at home that she could bring me. The parents that know about it kept telling me I hope your baby cooperates and is in the right position and honestly that thought had never crossed my mind. The baby had been so much more active lately that I just assumed it would be in the right position. Nevertheless, now that thought was ingrained in my mind.


Everyone had been asking me what I thought we were having and I really had no idea. At first, when we first found out we were pregnant I thought it was a girl just because I really want to have a little girl but as the weeks went by I thought it was probably a boy since Robert has 2 brothers, although I'm not entirely sure what the significance of that is. Anyway, so with no real thought behind my reasoning, I thought it was a boy.

So Tuesday night finally rolls around and I couldn't sleep because I was so excited/nervous/anxious. More than anything I just wanted to make sure that the baby was developing like it should and that it looked normal. I finally fell asleep after tossing and turning and then woke up at 12:30 with the feeling that "it's a boy". I had a dream and I don't remember it but I do remembering waking with that jolted feeling and then knowing we were having a boy. It's the only time throughout the pregnancy that I've had a strong inclination. Anyway, so my appt. was scheduled for 2:30 and lucky for me we were making gingerbread houses that afternoon so I didn't have to put a lot of thought into my afternoon of teaching. The bell finally rings and I'm chatting with two mommies about when they found out about their kiddos and I'm constantly checking my watch and then finally go, "Well, I've got to get to my appt." So I get to the dr.'s office and do my business and then go sit in the waiting room with the hubs, my parents and his mom. They call us back and get started.

It was the neatest thing seeing the baby on the screen. Within 10 minutes of laying there and seeing the heartbeat and it's little face and arms the lady was able to tell us we we're having a boy! Everyone was excited about it! But the little guy was content on laying in the same position the whole time!!! She finally got a picture of his boy parts for us but it wasn't as good as she would've liked. The only thing he moved were his arms and occasionally his legs but stayed in the same position the whole time. It was very weird seeing his face when he turned his head. He looks like an alien. =) We got a ton of pictures to take home and I already posted my favorite one of him...he's got the cutest little nose. But here are a few more for your viewing pleasure. =)



You can see his little arm resting on top of his face and his little leg is bent. We also were able to see his fingers. =) So precious!


This black spot that looks like his eye is actually the lens of the eye.

Another one with his arm on top of his face. The white parts on him are his bones and if you look by his elbow that weird looking L shape is his umbilical cord.
I just love this one!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Christmas Around the World


Zalig Kerstfeest! Feliz Navidad! Froehliche Weihnachten! God Jul! Merry Christmas!




So for the past two weeks my kiddos have been "traveling" around the world to learn how other kiddos celebrate this holiday season. This is the 1st year I've ever done this project for the holiday season and oh is it a project. It's very fun and rewarding but it's a lot of work. So far we've learned about Hannukah. We played the dreidel game, learned about the menorah and why it has eight candles, we also learned the significance of using oil to make latkes and we learned about gelt (Hannukah money).




We've also learned about Christmas in the Netherlands and how Sinter Klaas visited the children on a white horse and brought his friend Black Pete who wrote down the naughty kids names in his big red book. We also made shoes (kiddos in the Netherlands put out their wooden shoes full of hay and carrots for Sinter Klaas' horse) and left them out over night and found a gold coin in them the next day. For this country we also watched a movie called Santa and Pete and we learned that our Santa followed the children over to America and we learned how he got his hat and red coat (from the Native Americans). We also learned why Santa goes down the chimney, and why we hang stockings and don't put out our shoes, and we watched how Sinter Klaas' horse eventually became Santa's reindeer. It's actually a really good movie and I think everyone should see it at some time in their lifetime.




Then we were off to England where we learned that the tradition of Christmas cards started there and it's been around for over 100 years. We also learned about the yule log and why they save the ashes...to bring good luck of course. We also learned that a lot of our Christmas carols came from England as well.




We've also visited Sweden and learned about St. Lucia and that she brings a nice treat of cinnamon rolls to families on December 13. We got to partake in our own cinnamon rolls! We also learned about Jultomte and how he helps Santa deliver presents. We also learned about Dipping Day where the Swedes dip a piece of black bread into soup broth for good luck.






Today we visited Mexico and learned about Las Posadas and that traditionally they don't open presents until January 6 and that the Three Kings bring the presents to the good boys and girls. We also learned the significance of the poinsettia.




Tomorrow we're off to Germany to learn about the tannebaum (Christmas tree) and gingerbread houses. We even get to make our own.




Last but not least the US. We'll make our own stockings to hang up in the classroom to be filled by Santa. We'll also be making Christmas ornaments.




I tell you the past two weeks have been very crazy but so fun and it's really been neat to learn about how other countries and how they celebrate this time of year. After we learn about a country they have to write about it in their Holiday Traditions book. Pictures of that to come. I know a lot of the kiddos have found interesting pieces which I hope they'll remember.







Some of our poinsettias.


Oh...sorry for the random trivia...but in case you're ever on Jeopardy and you win because of one of these facts you can send half your winnings to me..broke teacher. =)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Zoo Lights


This weekend the hubs and I went to Zoo Lights at the Reid Park Zoo in Tucson. Neither of us had been before to any kind of Zoo Lights so we thought it would be fun. We got there around 6:30 and found the line to wrap around the Aquatic Center that is next door. With a little apprehension we got in line but found it to move fairly quickly. We were in the line probably about 15-20 minutes. Next time we go, we'll be buying the advance tickets. But nonetheless it was finely our turn to buy our tickets and in we went. It was actually really neat. The way they had the lights strung up. It was very pretty. I love Christmas lights...this time of year, I love to drive around and look at all the houses with their pretty decorations, so this was a treat for me! The only animals that were out were the elephants and they were probably wondering what in the world was going on? Why were all of these people in their house at that time of night? I really want to go to Zoo Lights in Phoenix. We didn't have the fanciest camera...but we did get some pictures. Enjoy!
Poor guys...had no idea what was going on.


I need these guys in my front yard....don't tell my husband. =)

Here I am at 20 weeks.

Friday, December 10, 2010

makin' a list

As it is that time of year...I'm having the hardest time coming up with things I want for Christmas. How sad...this must be what it's like when you're a full-fledged adult. Yes? No?

As I'm surrounded by 26 six and seven year olds five days a week and being that it is Christmas according to them, I find myself thinking about my wish list. I made my kiddos write their letters to Santa, and surprisingly, they actually listened for this assignment. I explained that when we write a letter, we're actually having a conversation with someone. So, no, they could not just write a list of things they wanted but they needed to "talk" to Santa about what they wanted and why, and maybe even throw a question or two in there for him. Nonetheless, they managed to get in a few of their high-ticket items. And this brings me back to my point. Ask any kid what they want for Christmas, and no matter what time of the year it is, they can spout off about a million things. Whereas, I the 25 year old that I am can't think of more than two or three things that I would like to have under my tree this year. Now my husband has been gleefully letting me know for the past month that he knows what he's getting me for Christmas and I have no idea what those things would be. Believe me, I've racked my brain... many times but to no avail I come up empty handed. And surprisingly my husband has a list a mile long...well maybe not a mile long but he NEVER has a list...EVER! So, shopping for him has been relatively easy this year.
This is the only thing that I really, REALLY want.


Yes, I know they're Uggs and I yes, I know I live in Southern Arizona but nonetheless, I have always wanted a pair of Uggs. Not so I can wear them with cut-off shorts ala all the celebrities but so I can just wear them over my skinny jeans or just because my feet are always cold. This is the exact pair I want in this color as well...chestnut. Is anyone else picking up on the *hint, hint.

Guess we'll have to see if I've been a good girl or not this year. =)

Monday, November 29, 2010

double trouble

So I come home from today having had a really good day. I'm excited to eat the turkey soup that's been cooking in the crock pot all day and I'm even more excited to get started on the huge Christmas project my kiddos will be doing in the coming weeks. Anyway, I open the front door to see a black bucket laying in the Arizona room. Now this is not alarming or unusual as our two dogs tend to get into things when they're left outside during the day. Now, I should've known it wasn't going to be that simple as today was the first super cold and windy day we've had so far. And when I think about it our lovely four-legged creatures tend to get into all kinds of trouble because they stay in the Arizona room for the most part during these kinds of days. Nonetheless, I open the back door to find that that black bucket is actually a paint can with the label ripped off. And yes, to answer your question it still had unused paint inside from when we painted our living room. On further inspection of this paint can you could see the teeth marks from either one or both of our lovelies where they tried in vane to open the can with no success...on that one.

As I turn to my left I see this lovely image....


Yes folks that's right...a gallon of paint spilled all over the floor of the Arizona room. As I'm yelling "OH MY GOD" along comes my good friend Apollo who decides to explore with mommy and steps in it. Well, the paint is still wet and he slips scaring himself and flinging paint on my pants, shoes and himself as he tries to get out of it. Somehow, I managed to grab him before he ran into the house and all over the carpet. Here he is with paint on his paws. Doesn't he look happy?


Anyway, so the hubs comes home and needless to say 30 minutes later the floor is cleaned to the best it's going to be and these two trouble makers got what they deserved.




Would anyone like a 2 year old boxer and 3 year old pit bull? I promise you'll never be bored!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

deck the halls

I absolutely love this time of year. I really don't care about Halloween and I only enjoy Thanksgiving because it means super good food and lots of it but Christmas...I love Christmas. Actually, it's probably more accurate to say I love this time of year. I love seeing all the lights go up on houses. I love going to the stores and looking at their Christmas displays but only after Thanksgiving. I love lighting my cinnamon candles when I get home from work. I love listening to Christmas music and watching Christmas movies, especially White Christmas with my mom. I love seeing the kids faces at the mall when they're in line waiting for Santa. I also love that I have a fireplace because it means lots of warm and toasty nights! I just think it's a magical time of year! I only wish we lived somewhere it snowed during this time of year...then it would be perfect!


Today my hubby pulled out our Christmas stuff and I got busy! I got our tree up and decorated. Got my collection of snowmen out, although I think I was very careful and selective in my choices and my hubby is currently working on getting up our lights and lawn decorations. Pictures of that will come later...he's currently muttering to himself and trying to fix the reindeer that won't light up. Did I mention, that this is the time of year that I know my hubby really loves me because he hangs up all of our lights within a day or two of Thanksgiving and the past two years he's even bought the lawn decor just because he knows how much I love this time of year.

Here's my house!

Don't you just love a fireplace at Christmas? The hubs likes nutcrackers and I'm obsessed with snowmen. I think I mixed them well this year!









The tree. Luckily, both of our moms saved us ornaments throughout the years.

















My mother-in-law buys me a shoe ornament each year and this is the perfect place to hang them. Since shoes have their own space in my closet and a special place in my heart, it's only fitting that they have their own tree! My parents gave me the the ballet slippers on the bottom when I was 7.





The divider between the living room and kitchen.













The view from the couch. The four snowglobish things my mom found at Hallmark. She loves that store and always finds cute things there. When you push one of the buttons on the one of the figurines they all dance to a Christmas song.








Our nativity scene. We found it 2 years ago in one of the Catholic stores my dad frequents in Tucson. The hubs and I really liked it because we've never seen one quite like it. The figures are unique and the hubs built the shelter. The only thing left is our advent wreath.








Now that the inside of my house is done and the outside is being worked on all that's left is my classroom. That'll be done Tuesday after school. Ooo...I guess there's another reason why I love this time of year...I get to decorate two different places...my home and my classroom. =)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

moving around

I can't believe my week is over. Yes, I know it's only Tuesday but in teacher speak...the week of Thanksgiving is crazy especially when you decide to do a program with 50 1st graders and a feast. I'm so glad the district decided to give us a "Fall Break" tomorrow I know I'm sleeping in!

The program went really well and the kiddos definitely loved Mrs. Faust dressed as a Pilgrim. I didn't get any pictures of it but you can imagine...long black dress, white apron, white neck thingy and white hat. I was so proud of my kiddos though. We've been working very hard for the past two week to learn our songs to include sign language for What a Wonderful World, and a small skit. I also had a colleague decide she wanted to do it too. So coordinating 50 1st graders was definitely a feat in its own right but nonetheless, after a rough dress rehearsal yesterday they pulled it together and did a great job today! Our feast also went pretty well. This is the 2nd year I've decided to do it and I stressed the day before last year and yesterday as well. Cooking...well preparing food with 26 1st graders is not easy plus lugging it all home to cook sucks! I worried that I wouldn't have enough food for the parents but turns out there was nothing to worry about. I swore last year I wasn't going to do a big feast again and this I'm swearing that I won't do it again next year but it's fun despite the amount of work and stress that is involved. It's also totally worth it when you're kiddos tell you it's been the best day of their lives.

But in even more exciting news...I think I felt the baby move! It happened on Sunday at my parents house. I was half laying and half sitting in their recliner and I felt this kicking sensation on the right side of my stomach twice. I wasn't sure at first but when I telling Robbie in the car on the way home, he asked if I'd ever felt it before and no I haven't...so yay there is a person in there. =) I keep hoping it'll happen again but no so luck as of yet.

Monday, November 22, 2010

28 ain't bad

This smokin' guy is 28 today. Now if you ask him...he'll cry and complain about how it's "just another day" but I beg to differ. It's the day he came to be on this earth and had that not occurred I wouldn't be his wife. So in honor of the good lookin' man's birthday here are 28 reasons why I love him. =)
1. He makes me laugh uncontrollably...a lot. Sometimes to the point where it's one of the embarrassing laughs where you can't breathe but yet you laugh so loud people stare.
2. He's totally got a bad boy look with his tattoos
3. The way he texts me faithfully everyday at 4:30 to see if I'm on my way home or not.
4. His giggle that only happens around me.
5. The way seeing him play with other people's kids makes me melt.
6. How excited he gets when I make potato salad.
7. Because he's a sucker for the look I give him when I want something...Lord help him if we have a girl.
8. Because he'll tell you how it is without apologies.
9. When he puts his "smell good" on...it makes me want to kiss him for long periods of time.
10. Because he lets me be DJ (for the most part) when we drive places.
11. Because he likes it when I talk to him when he's in the shower.
12. Because even though I act annoyed...the way he's all over me.
13. He listens to me when I tell him "I'm dying" and then tells me I'm ridiculous.
14. He ALWAYS gets up the with dogs when they come in at 6:30 on Saturdays.
15. Because he'd do anything for me...no matter what.
16. Because he executes my visions for our house renovations.
17. When he's bumming in sweats and a t-shirt and his hair is a mess...it pretty much makes my teeth sweat.
18. How he acts around the old ladies at church...so polite and charming.
19. Even though it drives me nuts...the way he small talks with people in stores.
20. He's a really good kisser.
21. The way he's ready to make up after 5 minutes when we fight and won't leave me alone until I forgive him.
22. Because I know how hard he works and how he secretly takes pride in all of his work.
23. The way he looks when he's got his bike jacket on in the morning before he leaves.
24. Because I know he's going to be a great dad.
25. Because he's super protective of me.
26. Because he supports my career and only complains every now and then when I "need" to buy something else for my classroom.
27. How mad he gets when I don't ask for his help with my classroom.
28. Because he's the only person I want to be on this journey with.
There's about a million more reasons why I love him but for now those will do!
Happy Birthday Robbie!

Friday, November 19, 2010

guilty


These two...there really are no words to describe them. Alone they'd probably be okay but together they are trouble. The one on the right, Lady, is the ring leader. She's the one who breaks into my garden and destroys my plants in the attempt to get a squirrel that taunts and teases her. The one the left, Apollo, is the lunk head who goes along with Lady's schemes and likes to dig his way to China and kick all of his tennis balls underneath furniture just to watch you rescue them only to turn around and do it again.
In this picture, Lady looks like she's saying, "Aww, come on mom, please let us stay on the bed. We promise to be good. You won't even know we're here". And Apollo appears to be saying, "Do you mind...I was having a good dream".

Thursday, November 18, 2010

the size of an onion

Apparently at 17 weeks the baby is the size of an onion.


Today we had our 3rd baby appointment. I'm 17 weeks and things are good. We got to hear the heartbeat again...well I did. It was the first time Robert got to hear it. I got to hear it twice. I got to the appointment first and didn't have to wait very long at all...the last two times it was about a 30-45 minute wait. This time I got there peed in a cup and waited about 5 minutes. Anyway...the nurse listened to the heartbeat first thing and I asked her if she could do it again when Robert came and she did. During the 1st one the baby was kicking. I have no idea...it sounded like scratches to me. Thank goodness these nurses know what they're doing. Then the 2nd time it took her a minute to find the heartbeat again but then it got louder and louder. Such a good baby already. Then the doctor came in and talked to me about the test they do to see how at risk the baby is for having Downs Syndrome, Spina Bifida or chromosomal abnormalities. It freaks me out beyond belief, but I think I'll get it done..tomorrow since it has to be done in a 24 hour period. And he also measured my belly.


On December 15th we get to find out what this baby is. I'm bummed because I thought we'd be able to find out like next week or the week after. The nurse said we'd be able to find out a lot sooner than 4 weeks later but whatev. Robert said it's better because the baby will be bigger and they'll definitely be able to tell what it is. We'll see.


Anyway...I guess it's time I started documenting this especially since I've got a bump now. So here you go...here I am at 17 weeks and 1 day.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

face lifts and paint

This weekend the hubs and I finally painted our living room. We've been wanting to paint since we moved in 3 years ago. Our house was built in the 60's and I doubt that the previous owners did anything to update it. The walls were this horrible white color that had slowly faded to this yellowish color due to smoking and when we moved furniture away from the walls you could see the outline perfectly. Sick! So we've been doing small projects here and there to give this baby a face lift. Last year we painted the kitchen and got new hardware for the cupboards. Over the summer the hubs ripped out the gross carpet in the living and dining room and put down tile and now we've painted and got new a light for the dining room. Those rooms are officially done except for Robbie tiling the window sills!

Since our dining room and living are one big room we decided to paint our longest wall one color and the remaining walls another color. I went with an orangey palate since our kitchen is burgundy red, and the colors would contrast with the dark furniture and light tile.


Here's the before. Robbie started taking down the stuff on the walls before I could take my pictures. We bought the area rug last Monday.







Here's the hubs trying to put the anchors in the wall for where our pictures need to go when we're done.







These two were no help at all and couldn't understand why we were taking apart and moving their precious couch. They had nowhere to nap all day and kept walking around aimlessly. But on a side note their couch will be taken apart more frequently so I can vacuum up the disgusting amount of hair and dirt that collects underneath it.




Here's our new light fixture. So much better than the ceiling fan, that when turned on made you feel like it was going to fall out of the ceiling...it was very shaky.




The new color...it looks more peachy orange in real life. =)









The pumpkiny orange color on our longest wall. And Lady, so happy to have her beloved couch back.







The baseboards just because the hubs picked out the color and according to him...they make the room =). We also got new outlet covers.






We worked all day yesterday but it was so worth it to have a whole new living room!



I know he's excited about it. =)





Friday, November 12, 2010

what do I make?

This week has been an absolute crazy one! With a holiday on a Thursday and school the day after made for quite an interesting week. This week has been very trying in my patience. I don't know if it's because of the kind of class I have this year, or the fact that I'm pregnant or maybe a little of both but I find myself counting to 10 while taking deep breaths a lot more than I have in the past...mind you this is only my 3rd year. But this week alone...something has been off. My class has literally turned into the Wild Things...I even asked if they had taken a journey to a remote island and encountered the Wild Things. They of course giggled and said no. But nonetheless this week alone, I have one kiddo who is bankrupt (I use a banking system as my reward system), I took away Fun Friday, took all 25 kiddos to the Principal's office for a "field trip" and taken away the privilege to move around for centers...now they get to sit at their seats and everyone does the same center instead of rotating each day to the 5 different centers, oh and I've also taken away going to the carpet and had a few private conversations in the hallway. I used the term the Wild Things because I literally had kiddos playing games under their tables, rolling around on the carpet, hitting/shoving/pushing, using scissors to cut up my crayons, and erasers and breaking pencils.

Not to mention talking to the same parents over and over about the same occurrences in my classroom. I feel like a tape recorder..."What did I just say", "If you we're listening you would have heard me explain how to do that", "If I could finish what I'm saying instead of having to repeat myself, we could move on with our day", "No, you may not go to the bathroom because you're not asking me the right way", "Are you supposed to get up out of your seat and follow me around", along with my favorites "I'm done...I have no more patience for this", "Honey, I don't know what that says...you wrote it which means you should be able to read it", "If you have to ask me what something says that you've written, you probably need to go back and fix it", "Is this your 100% very, very best handwriting", and "I know someone wants to talk to me but I don't know who that person is because they're not in their seat with their hand in the air".

Yes, I know I teach 1st grade and these kiddos are only 6 and 7 but I expect a lot from them in terms of academics and behavior. Especially, when we spend the first six weeks of school learning how to do things and practicing over and over again. I've also found in my very short time in this profession that they are capable of a lot, especially when you have high standards and expect them to do their very best. We learn very quickly that "I can't" is an unacceptable phrase in 1st grade as everything I give them is something they can do but some days might need some help. We also learn very quickly that it's all about choices. I don't have bad students, just students who sometimes make back choices for example if you choose to play during a work time, then you work during play time...should that be your morning recess or lunch recess that choice is yours to make.

Sometimes I really wonder if I get anything done besides redirect behaviors. Sometimes I wonder if I'm getting through to any of them. Sometimes I wonder if I'm getting through to the parents. But when I hit this path I always manage to stumble upon something that puts it into perspective whether it's one of my kiddos coming up to me an telling me that they didn't used to like Junie B. until I started reading it to them because it sounds "magical" when I read. That of course was followed by the question, "Is there periods on those pages" to which my response was "...Yes, why"? and her response was "Well when my sister reads it, it doesn't sound like there are periods". "Well, maybe you should read it to her, to help her see that reading should sound like talking". Or I happen to stumble across something that makes me see...yes someone else gets what I'm doing here. Tonight I found my inspiration in Taylor Mali. He's a teacher and the poet who wrote the poem, "What do I make". Totally made me laugh out loud and gain a little perspective...while I'm pulling my hair out...I am and do make a difference.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

you're not better

Sometimes I'm utterly amazed at the amount of stupidity it takes to run things. I realize that sentence is a complete oxymoron. The amount of people who are my superiors and that I have to answer to in some way whether it be direct or indirect is ridiculous. The number of people it takes to think up the "wonderful" ideas (and I use that term loosely), to make our kids "more competitive" is ridiculous. The number of people it takes to take those "wonderful" ideas and tweak them every other day is ridiculous.

See this is part they so thoughtfully left out when I sitting in the College of Ed. learning how to be teacher. The political part. And the part on how to play the game. I have to say that I'm exhausted from playing the game. I'm so tired of people who have never been in a classroom, other than to the smile and wave and act interested in what I do, or the people who were in the classroom but for a few short years before they jumped into the pond they really wanted to swim in, dictating what in their minds is "best practice". I don't want to play the game. The game has no business being in my business. I signed on to teach and better kids--not listen to you tell me what you think I should do based on what another district does that has nothing in common with mine other than the fact that they have schools. I didn't sign on to read a script all day. I did not sign on to sit in meeting after meeting just to be told I need to go to another meeting to discuss another meeting. I didn't sign on to follow behind people with questions that should've been answered from the get go and ideas that they should be thinking up on their own.

I find it amazing that while I'm expected to have my ducks in a row and have my crap together, it's completely acceptable for people who are in charge of "managing" me to not have there's together. It makes it very frustrating and disheartening to go to work every day. It makes me wonder what my job will look like in 5 or 10 years. Will I even be needed or will everything be done on a computer or via a robot who can pick up a script and read it? It makes me wonder if this is something I really want to do for the next 27 years before I can even think about retirement. I love what I do. I really do. I get such a joy from working with kids although some days I have to count to 10 in my head and take a lot of deep breaths. It's not the kids or typical stuff that comes from a working in such close quarters with other people. It's the people who really don't get it and think that the only important thing is to be competitive in the time of charter schools and standards that come from state departments who really don't understand what kids need.

............

Friday, November 5, 2010

pregnancy shenanigans

I'm pretty sure it's WAY too early for the whole nesting part of pregnancy but nonetheless I just spent the last two hours cleaning my house. Now when I say cleaning we all need to understand that I do the bare minimum when it comes to cleaning---vacuuming, mopping and cleaning the bathrooms and a LIGHT dusting that probably makes my mother cringe every time she comes over...it's one of the many chores I detest. I would much rather spend all day in Phoenix traffic in the middle of July at high noon than clean the house.

But again...I just spent the last two hours cleaning my house. I mean dusting everything...base boards, shelves, behind the TV in our room and my perfume bottles. I vacuumed like it was going out of style and steamed mopped my floors to include the kitchen which usually gets swiffered as an after thought. Holy Cleaning. And surprisingly I feel so much better.

I don't know...I'm perplexed by pregnancy. I officially can't fit into the majority of my jeans which makes me increasingly sad as the days go by. I love jeans! I probably would've worn them to my wedding had I not loved my wedding dress so much. I'm also finding that my memory is fading and quickly. Yesterday, I spent my entire morning looking for 3 green attendance cards that I swore I took out of my box at school. I remember taking them out of my box, stopping to talk to another 1st grade teacher and then getting to my room as the bell rang. After that I have no freaking memory of what happened to the cards. I looked like a freaking nut picking up piles of paper and looking in both of my trash cans 4 times each. Going through my kiddos folders and very close to tearing through their backpacks. I repeatedly asked them "Did anyone pick up green cards from my table" and "What did Mrs. Faust do when we came into the classroom"? God bless 1st graders, they tried in earnest to help me find them but then I think they just got a kick out of it because as we we're lining up for lunch and I'm frantically searching for these stupid cards trying to keep myself from crying like a 1st grader, I began to hear whispers of "Watch Mrs. Faust, she's looking for those cards again". Hello..when you have 25 1st graders watching you for pure enjoyment...there's a problem. Anyway...as I'm leaving the cafeteria to go eat my lunch I'm debating in my head if I should go tell our lovely secretaries what this preggo lady did, while telling another 1st grade teacher what my problem is...I go to the my mailbox and what should I find? The three cards that have left me in an absolute panic. You'd think finding them would have made my life, but no...I'm saddened to realize that my thought process and short term memory are most definitely fading. And good news...apparently this lasts through the pregnancy and after.

I'm sorry but at this point...I don't find this experience "magical".. I find it to be frustrating. Oh I know...it'll be so worth it once we have the sweet bundle of happiness but until then are you kidding me? I'm 15 weeks...I've got like 160-something more days.

I would just like to go and drink an AMP (I think...I have no idea but whatever energy drink I was addicted to in college). But I think that's definitely not allowed. =/

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

So Obvious...


well maybe not exactly but it's official...I'm definitely sporting a bump although right now it's more of a pooch than a bump but still. I wore my black gap jeans today and let's just say they're officially out of the wardrobe rotation. My kiddos expressed with great delight today that "the baby is getting bigger, Mrs. Faust". I silently thanked them for remembering not to call me fat and said "Yup, isn't that great" although I was also thinking WHAT?!




I know, I know this is supposed to happen but really...I'm only 15 weeks along. I'm not entirely sure how I feel about this latest development. Although, maybe I'll stop focusing on other..ahem..areas that have also been growing at what seems like an exponential rate.


I have to be honest...sometimes I'm very excited about having a baby and then other times I'm very nervous when I think about it. Are we ready to be parents...are we going to be good parents...are we completely insane? I mean sure we have 4 pets and they're all alive and thriving (although some days it's touch and go with the turtle). My house is always a mess, I hate doing most chores and I really like to sleep. I have no clue what we're going to do with the baby when I have to go back to work (which brings on a whole new set of anxiety issues). I may be a slight hypochondriac and a little neurotic. I worry about things that are probably more than a little silly and would probably never happen. I guess nobody is really ready to be a parent and everyone does best they can... but it's still very stressful. I just don't want to screw this kid up.


Anyway...back to the real reason for this post. I was so hoping to wait until at least Christmas before I had to start buying maternity pants. I even googled how to buy maternity pants because I have no idea. Seriously...
The picture at the top is supposed to be a pregnant lady's best friend. Guess it's true what they say about best friends...they're there to lend support.


Monday, November 1, 2010

Monsters


Can you guess which mask I wore today? =)
Today was insane!!! Nevermind my previous post where I asked if you'd ever been around kids days before Halloween. Have you ever been around kids the day after Halloween?
It was not a pretty day in 1st grade today. Most of the kids were normal, it was those few that made me think I somehow turned into the wicked witch. Between kids complaining about how tired they were and seeing them all cracked out on candy...I should've called in sick today. Note to self: in the future if Halloween falls on Sunday take the Monday off! Kids were moving their names left and right and handing over pennies this way and that. Although the icing on my day was when I spoke with a mom about how off the charts out of control her kid was...and how I was attributing it to Halloween but still not an excuse to do what he did all day. Her response to me was "I have a special Halloween tradition...I let them eat as much candy as they want". This was also after she expressed that teachers shouldn't have to work the day after Halloween. Um...Hello! How about not sending your kid to school if you've let him eat his weight in candy. Thanks!


Let's all pray that tomorrow is significantly better!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Husbands and Scanners

So at my mom's urging the hubs and I went to Target to start our baby registry. Since we don't know what we're having yet we only added the basics...crib, bassinet and one or two other items. I'll be heading back to Baby's-R-Us on my next day off from school. And once we find out what we're having, you can bet there will be a ton more. Robert was in charge of the scanner for this outing and it must be a boy thing to go around and scan everything...he added 3 breast pumps, a CD, a bear hat and a Leapster. It was comical at best but next time I'm in charge for sure! Thinking about everything we're going to need is slightly overwhelming. I'm only talking about basics here...like a car seat, stroller, bouncy chair, swing, pacifiers, bottles, and that's only to name a few things. Not to mention our baby's room is currently my 2nd classroom. My plan is to start cleaning it out over Christmas break.



Even though I'm completely stressed and am slowly crossing over that "I'm officially CRAZY and HORMONAL line", I'm very excited to start decorating the baby's room. Our theme is going to be owls. Those of you who know me, know I'm OBSESSED with all things ladybug. But I'm also equally obsessed with owls...when they're cartoony looking. And I figure they can go either way..girly or boy. I have this whole idea in my head about a mural I would like the hubs to paint on the wall...he's not as excited as about it but I'm sure I can talk him into it. =) I've bought fabric to make the baby a quilt. No, I do not sew nor do I know how to work a sewing machine currently but in the next 6 months I plan to. =) I feel it's a mothery thing to do. We'll see....

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Candygrams, Pumpkins, Halloween Parades..oh my!

If you've ever been around a few kids around Halloween then you know how crazy they can be...try working at an elementary school. =) This past week has been super crazy and I'm so happy that it's over!

I'm an advisor for a club at my school called K-Kids and my little contribution is fundraising. So I work with about 12 kids to come up with ideas on how to raise to money for our club and one idea we had (which we copied from 2 year's ago) was to do Halloween candygrams for the whole school. I had no idea how INSANE it was going to be. You could buy one candy gram for .25 or the whole sheet of 4 for $1.00. When all was said and done we made about $320 and ended up with 1278 candygrams. That's a lot of lollipops. It was fun and the kids enjoyed getting their candygrams. But thankfully we're taking a long break from candygrams...until St. Patrick's Day.

The same week as candygrams, I decided to do my annual Pumpkin Extravaganza with my kiddos. Their job is to estimate how much their pumpkin weighs, how big around it is and how many seeds are inside. Then they have to find the actual number of all those areas. When they're all done they get to make a jack-o-lantern out of their pumpkin. This was the 1st year that all of my parents who said they would help showed up, so I didn't have a group. I'm still not sure how I feel about it but walking around taking pictures and managing groups was still a job in itself. I took pictures of the jack-o-lanterns and will upload them later. But all-in-all the kids had a fun and they did a great job!

Friday was our school's annual Fall Parade where everyone gets to where their costumes to school and the K-2 kiddos get to march while the 3-6 and parents are our audience. The theme this year was the Wizard of Oz and I was Dorothy for our grade level. No...I didn't get picture but I have a ton of moms who played the paparazzi part so I'm sure I'll be able to track one down that I scan in. Although one of my fellow teachers told me I looked pregnant in my Dorothy outfit and I should wear more dresses like that. I'm getting to that awkward "is she pregnant" or "just chubby" phase.

This week alone was super busy with activities not to mention having a meeting after school everyday although I did opt out of the meeting on Thursday because I just couldn't sit and listen to people talk anymore about stuff they are going to change later on down the road anyway.

I'm so glad it's the weekend...I need to recharge and gear up for November craziness which will entail putting on a program for my kiddo's parents and making our Thanksgiving feast.

The life of a teacher....we're either very dedicated or just crazy or maybe a little of both. =)

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Oh Baby!

Guess I should update about the baby. =)

 BabyFruit Ticker



I'm 13 weeks...well I guess it'll be 14 weeks tomorrow. They say I'll be due April 27. I got to hear the heartbeat last Friday. The hubs was in Tucson getting his education on so my mom went with me. It was super cool and I'm pretty sure I'll remember that forever. According to the nurse the baby was very active, moving around a lot. I have no idea how they can tell that, the heartbeat sounded the same to me the whole time but nonetheless it was a good strong heartbeat. I feel like it's a little more real since I don't have a belly yet although it is getting harder to suck it in everyday. =) I have to admit I can't wait to start wearing maternity clothes...I plan on wearing polka dots. =)

Our next appointment is in November and I'll be 17 weeks and then hopefully a few weeks ago we'll be able to actually see this kid. People keep asking me what I think we're having...I thought it was a girl for awhile but now I think it's a boy. Either way this kid's closet is going to be fully stocked. =)

My kiddos are so excited for me...they keep telling me they hope it's a little girl so I can have a "little Mrs. Faust". One of my girls even said to me "Mrs. Faust, in 6 years your baby will be 6 and going to 1st grade. You should be it's teacher so it won't have to leave you". So freaking cute!

The nurse did say at our last appointment that the baby can hear me...which makes me a little nervous since I think all it hears is me using my "teacher voice" with my kiddos. This poor baby isn't going to want to come out since all it's probably listening to is me saying "Where are you supposed to be right now", "Are you working or playing", "I don't know...who's job is it to keep track of that" or my favorite "I'm done". Hopefully it's true what they say about kids not remembering anything before like age 3 or 4. Guess we'll find out...

Monday, October 25, 2010

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

What does that even mean?

Tonight my hubs decided to go out with me and search for the missing pieces to my Halloween costume of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. After visiting every major store in this town, and one minor mishap at K-Mart that involved this lady hula hooping in the middle of an aisle and actually slamming the hula hoop into the shelf holding the baby dolls, and laughing hysterically for 3 minutes, we found ourselves at Target. As we were walking in we saw a guy, we'll call him Journeyman, who looked weathered and in need of help of some kind...the hubs noticed one of his soles was falling off and asked if we should offer to buy him new shoes...I agreed and went into the store as he went to ask Journeyman if we could help. After searching in vain at every store for the coveted "ruby red slippers" I decided to settle on red chucks and call it a day. I found my size and also found my husband with Journeyman in the shoe department. I didn't notice Journeyman...he walked on ahead. I went on my quest to find a sufficient Toto and ha..mission accomplished I ventured back to the shoe department and found hubs and Journeyman there. This is where I finally said hi and as he looked up I recognized him as a kid I swam with in high school. He was decidedly as surprised to see me as I was to see him. We had a short conversation and he decided on his shoes but seemed reluctant. We all trudged up to the counters and they decided to do another lap while I bought my stuff. 10 minutes later they come walking out empty-handed. When I asked the hubs what happened he said Journeyman backed out saying they were too expensive. The car ride home was very quiet...when we got home the hubs decided to go back out and try to find Journeyman at Walmart where he said he was headed.

The point of this post is not helping out a stranger who turned out not to be so much of a stranger but what happens in a few short years (it'll be 8 years since I said goodbye to high school and probably 7 since I last saw Journeyman) to a person that causes them to go from what appears to be a shining future to a weathered person who has probably experienced more than they should in their 20-something years? It makes me wonder where are those faces attached to those people I spent 3-4 years with? What has happened in their lives?

I know I wake up some days wondering if this is really my life. I would say I'm very happy with my life...I love my husband--he is the best person I could've ended up with and he makes me laugh uncontrollably and he lets me be my most ridiculous self--which if you know me, you know can be absolutely ridiculous. I love my job and can't imagine doing anything else and I'm so excited to be a mommy (it's what I was born to do...I think) but there are those moments where I think back to college and wonder what if I had chosen that over this or gone that way instead of this? Would I still have ended up in this place?