prayteachlove

A little faith and a lot of love go a long way…

Growing up

It happened. My baby boy grew up. He’s officially a kindergartener. 

He has been so excited to start school. It probably helps that his mama is a teacher who has had him tag along to her classroom numerous times, especially during the summer. He could. Not. Wait.

I’m not typically a crier but today, I shed some tears as his bus pulled away.

 
The best part was hearing about his day after I picked him up when I got off work. He was so excited about the magic playdoh he used that changed color when he made a wish. He loved sharing the Pete the Cat book they read today. Oh, and remember the first day teacher gift we made? The Gorilla was ecstatic that his teacher thanked him and PATTED HIS HEAD when he presented it to her. He gushed out how she loved it. And to top it all off, he ended by telling me how he can’t wait to go back to kindergarten tomorrow! I am so great fun for his teacher who made today such a special day for him, and for us. 

He even had a special friend meet him when he arrived home from school! (Our dog!)  

I also checked in with Binxy to see how her day went without her sidekick. 

She reported that she had a good day with daddy but she missed her brother!! My heart melted when she confessed that!

I have so much more to write, but not much time so more updates to come later!!   

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Still got it!

The end of the summer is near.  It’s bittersweet for me. It’s no secret I’ve had a tough time since losing my dad, but the past few weeks have almost…almost…felt normal. I guess it’s my new normal since things won’t ever be the same without my dad, but it’s something. It’s hope. I haven’t had that since December 2013, right before my dad’s mass was found, so I’ll take it, and cling to it, and pray things continue to look up.

Enough of the sappy crap. On to more Pinterest!! I can’t even believe I forgot to mention a certain recipe in my previous post because it was the biggest hit of them all!

I made stuffed French bread and it was beyond delicious. I think. I can’t truly tell you because I only got a very small portion of the 2 foot long loaf that I stuffed and then Big Daddy B ate the rest.  Thanks Big Daddy B. 😏 He was pretty excited about that meal though and it’s definitely one I will make again.

So on to my classroom adventures! It turns out my partner teacher who will focus on ELA is AWESOME! She’s been a huge help in my transition to a new building and position, even entertaining my kids in her classroom while Big Daddy B and I worked tirelessly to unpack and organize everything! She’s been so patient with me too, because I haven’t even been able to focus on any of the curriculum and procedural planning than happens before a new school begins because I’ve been so anxious about the physical state of disarray that my room has been in.

Thankfully, my room is about 95% ready to go as of today. Here are some before photos…   

    
    
  So. Many. Boxes. 😂

And now for the after photos, including my finished “focus” sign! ***Special shout out to Big Daddy B – I would not be so close to being ready right now without his help and support. ❤️❤️❤️***

   

  

I’m using both tables and desks this year. I’m excited to see how that works!

Besides working in my classroom, I also put together some first day of school gifts for my kids’ teachers. I got the idea and free printable here 

I included the following items inside each mason jar:

Chap stick, hand sanitizer, Tic Tacs, Rolaids, Tylenol, a nail file, cute post its, milk and dark chocolate

I’m on a ROLL!

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So many updates!!

Basically, I’m amazing.  Or at least, that’s what I’m telling myself. There’s so much to catch up on!

To begin with, you may remember that I spent the last two years as a Math Coach.  Well, as many districts have already done, mine finally cut all coaching positions. 

What does this mean for me? I’m going back to the classroom! I’ll be teaching 6th grade Math, Science, and Social Studies in a different building. While it’s no secret that I’m terribly sad to leave my current school family, I am already acquainted with much of the talented staff in my new building and I’m actually SUPER EXCITED to go back into the classroom. It’s true, I really do LOVE teaching! (Someone remind me of that during report card time…😋)

Anyway, with one week left to go in the summer, I’m still trying to get my room unpacked and organized as I only found out about a week and a half ago where I would be. I’ll post before and after photos once I have them!

For now though, I’ve completed a couple Pinterest projects for my classroom. First, I found this clever idea:  

So I created my own letters which I’ll hang before school starts!  
Then, I found this adorable idea…

  

So tonight I just completed the first of two canvasses. Definitely not as nice as the pin but I tried!! (It’s pretty obvious why I teach Math and not Art, Hahahaha!) (The kids will add their fingerprints in green as leaves the first week.)

    

I’ve also been cooking up a storm thanks to Pinterest! 

I made these delicious sweet and sour meatball skewers which were very tasty!

  
I also made this potato salad but I didn’t take a photo of it. It was yummy too! 

Then I made chicken stroganoff and it was also delicious!

  
I also made a loaded cauliflower and chicken casserole that was good (no photo).

Jumping back to the topic of school, I’ve kept busy getting primped for going back to being a full-time working mom. I even changed my hair color for the fall! 

 

So many projects, so little time!! See, I don’t spend ALL my time moping around! 😋

I’m anxious about getting my classroom ready in time for the first day of school, but looking forward to sharing the finished product photos! Coming soon!

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The ones who save my life

I had an entirely different post to share.

Then a friend of mine posted a heartfelt message for her babies on Facebook and I changed my mind.

My babies. The ones who save my life every. Single. Day.  

They drive me crazier than I ever thought possible. But they also bring me joy and a love that I had no idea existed.

I am far from a wonderful mom. I screw up multiple times a day. In fact, I recently got this as a testament to my mad skills as a mother.

 
But , damn do I love them. Beyond any love imaginable.  ❤️

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Beach life

I’ve spent the better part of this past week at the beach. Distance from home and everyday routines has given me some much needed space to breathe and begin to really sort some things out in my mind.  

I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I needed to have a conversation with God. Finally, I did it. Just two nights ago I spoke to God for the first time in nearly a year. I’ve prayed each night since.

Healing isn’t instantaneous and I didn’t expect it to be. There’s still a long road ahead, but finally, finally, I can see some light at the end of the tunnel. 💡🔦

———————-

A lot has happened during this brief summer respite. Our trip to Florida kicked off the summer and I didn’t expect to do much more traveling. Then, my dad’s only brother passed away suddenly. It was off to Nebraska for a few days then with my mom to say good-bye to my uncle and spend some time with my cousins and family. 

That was a tough trip. The last time we were all together was when my dad passed. He and my uncle were very close. There were many photos of my dad at my uncle’s funeral and I certainly had some difficult moments there. Reminiscing was welcomed but also poked a bit at wounds that still seem a bit too fresh for my liking. 

Now, I find myself at the beach. The future is uncertain, that I know with great certainty. I can’t change the past. But right now, I am here.

By the way, I promise the next few posts will be much lighter. I have lots I want to write about that will certainly be more entertaining, but my heart has been heavy and on this night that I just can’t seem to fall asleep though I’m quite tired, I knew it was time to write and unload a few of the infinite thoughts swirling in my mind.

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Some thoughts on life

What a year. I’ve been thinking a lot about what my life was like at this time last year and what it’s like now. 

I had a conversation with someone last night about God that’s been weighing heavily on my heart. I’ve tried everything to get my act together, to no avail. Basically, the most I’ve accomplished is making myself angry and miserable while doing my best to self-destruct and hurt everyone else in the process. What’s that saying? “Hurt people hurt people.” Something like that.  

I admitted last night that I’m incredibly angry with God. So angry that I’ve refused to speak to Him for awhile now. I blurted out that maybe I just needed to have an angry conversation with Him and the person I was talking to encouraged me to do it. He reminded me that God is bigger than my anger, my grief, my mistakes and my imperfections. He can handle me being mad.

It sucks admitting this. I’m a perfectionist and it is humbling, and quite honestly humiliating,  to confess this. I prefer handling things on my own, in my own way. Clearly, that is not working. 

Difficult conversations are a painful yet necessary part of life. I think it’s time I had one with God.

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Pinterest project update!

“You stand in the line just to hit a new low

You’re faking a smile with the coffee to go

You tell me your life’s been way off line

You’re falling to pieces every time

And I don’t need no carryin’ on


Cause you had a bad day

You’re taking one down

You sing a sad song just to turn it around

You say you don’t know

You tell me don’t lie

You work at a smile and you go for a ride

You had a bad day

The camera don’t lie

You’re coming back down and you really don’t mind

You had a bad day

You had a bad day”

Daniel Powter, Bad Day

Well, I’ve had a couple of bad days for sure. Today included. I even tried to drown my sorrows in some tasty pasta salad. 
Note: I didn’t drown. Neither did my sorrows. However, I have a pretty bad stomachache to accompany my raging headache and bad attitude.  

In the grand scheme of things, my problems aren’t that serious. I know that. So rather than lament on and on about my #firstworldproblems, (yes, I did just use a hashtag in my blog post), let’s talk PINTEREST!!

Basically, I’m a pretty crappy mom about 360 days of the year. There’s about 5 days or so when I seem to nail it and typically those days occurs on birthdays and during the summer. It’s during these warm weather months that I’m blessed to be home with my babies that I try to plan exciting and new things for my offspring. I’d like to think I’m building their background knowledge and keeping them from ever becoming bored and making memories. Then, my little jerks, I mean angels, bring me back to reality by having the following conversations with their father:

Gorilla: Why does mama keep planning things for us to do?

Big Daddy B: She wants you to have fun!

Gorilla: Well, it needs to stop. Now.

Too bad, I’m not stopping. You WILL have fun this summer you ungrateful…well, you will. I demand fun in the summer. And what else is more fun than a PINTEREST INSPIRED PIE PARTY!!

So, awhile ago I found this pin for a mini-pie bar. 

I decided to up the ante a bit and throw a pie party for my kiddos and some of their friends.

There were lots of fun toppings. 



And the end results were pretty tasty.    

The kids seemed to have fun, so I consider it a success!

Besides pie parties, we’ve kept busy in other ways as well.

We’ve spent time at the neighborhood park. 

We went to a local carnival. I should note that I hate heights and Ferris wheels. I especially loathe carnival grade Ferris wheels. I have no trust in the rusty screws that allegedly hold them together. However, my son begged to ride the Ferris wheel, and so I sucked it up, held on to him for dear life, and we rode. Of course, he loved it.   

 
Sparklers with Daddy on a rainy 4th of July.  

A visit to the Choo Choo Barn in Lancaster. 

 

A tour of the Utz potato chip factory in Hanover.   

 
  
  

And while I’m not dragging my family around making them enjoy the all that our local area has to offer, I completed yet another Pinterest project which I’m rather proud of. 

I pinned instructions to make a floating vanity. 
Then I  got to work. My mom, Binxy, and I went to Lowe’s to get my materials. I started with a large shelf. 
I painted it. Big Daddy B kindly hung it. I would have done that myself but he was itching to use the drill. Men and their tools.

And now I have a floating vanity. 

I don’t have my stuff organized the way I want yet, and I still want to add a few girly touches. But overall, I’m very happy with the result!

And if all that doesn’t erase my “woe is me” attitude, my new weather app, (Authentic Weather), certainly will.  

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I can’t

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Today is is a day full of “I can’ts.” After an eye-opening week, a week in which I’ve finally started to care again, here we are with an “I can’t Friday.”

The day started positively with a trip to the gym. I felt good, alive, being there and focusing on my health.

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Then, I got home and a short argument with Big Daddy B was had, so I took the kids to the neighborhood park to get some fresh air. All was resolved by the time we got home and he had left work. The next hour or so consisted of me being frustrated and angry about our different parenting styles, finding out we were out of milk in the middle of preparing lunch when I needed it, dealing with the Gorilla’s attitude in public and worrying about him, then spilling boiling water all over my foot.

Why? Why do I bother blogging about this, sharing it with the world? No doubt, I may piss people off with it, but I’m doing it anyway for the following reasons:

1.) I’m getting exhausted trying to keep it all in, all of the time. I’m getting tired feeling like I should always be happy. Because I’m not happy 24/7. (By the way, if you are…could you pass along your secret to me?) The one thing I hear over and over from people who get to know me, (besides my lovely skin, which if you must know, is mostly due to genetics and an expensive skincare regimen, HAHAHAHA!) is that I’m real. I don’t often sugar coat things and I typically say what’s on my mind, most of which is ridiculous and inappropriate but for whatever reason, others seem to find it refreshing. Or they just feel sorry for me. Either way, it’s who I am.

2.) Social media offers us a way to filter our lives so we all only see the beautiful, funny, heartwarming moments. Am I the only person who gets tired of filtering my life? Could I really be the only person in the world who occasionally wants to throw myself a pity party and shout, “FUCK! This is a bad day! I’m having a bad day and I just want to cry and no my life isn’t just some string of beautiful, funny, heartwarming moments! Sometimes it’s ugly and it hurts! And tomorrow I will be back to sharing all the good, but for today, just give me today, I. Just. Can’t.” If I am the only person out there who feels this way, well, then, congratulations to all of you for finding perfection. And by the way, you’re a bunch of jerks for leaving me in the dark. Or maybe there’s someone else out there also having an “I can’t” kind of day.

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So, choose to see what you want in me. I am who I am, whoever that may be these days.

In other news, the bright side is that it’s almost nap time and I absolutely shall be partaking today. Amen for that.

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For the love of big thighs…

 This could be a pretty serious post. I could begin telling you all about how I’m trying to save myself from me and pick up the pieces. But it’s not time for that just yet. 
I had also planned on writing about my adorable yet mischievous children and their escapades in throwing tantrums on dirty floors in grocery stores and honest tales of what they really think of the extra flab on my stomach. However, that too, is on hold for now.

Instead, I’d prefer to entertain you with my thighs.

Wait…

Have you climbed out of the gutter yet? I’ll continue on now…because I’m slightly (and by slightly I mean very) annoyed after a quick shopping trip this morning.

So, I’m no 36-24-36 a la Sir Mix-a-Lot, but I’m thicker through my hips and thighs and trying to find decent, respectable shorts in the summer is a freaking nightmare. 

As I gazed at myself in the Target dressing room this morning, pondering a 4 inch inseam on a pair of size 16 shorts I had tried on (OMG SHE JUST TOLD US HER SIZE!!! – you) (Yes, I did. Because I’m too old to care what you think of my size. – Me) I couldn’t help but think of a few choice words for the person who thought a 4 inch inseam on a pair of  size 16 shorts would even be remotely attractive. Perhaps, though, it’s my height. If only I were 6’9, I could rock that 4 inch inseam. Currently, however, it’s not a look I’ll be pulling off anytime soon since I’d like to keep some shred of my lingering dignity intact. 😉

So I continue to live in summer dresses and skirts, where my large and in charge thighs can be free to chafe (yes, I had to look up that spelling) as they please. I may not rock that inseam, but I’ll sure as hell rock chub rub season!!

Rant over. 😋

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Summer fun

Busy, busy, busy!!  

We have been busy since our return to PA. A lot has been on my mind, that I’m not ready to write about publicly just yet, and I’ve been distracting myself with staying busy.

I’ve been hitting the gym and making healthier choices when eating. 


The kids and I made a trip to the community pool in our development and spent an afternoon there. We spent another day with friends, swimming, eating and playing. We also went to see Inside Out which was adorable. It was also Binxy’s first time to the movie theater!

 
Last night I joined some friends from highschool and we caught up, some of us not having seen each other in 15 years! 

Today has been a lazy, rainy day at home, however it’s nice to have a boring-do-nothing kind of day after the past several days of being on the go constantly.

I’ve also spent some time trying new Pinterest recipes. Surprisingly, I didn’t mess them up! They were both ok. Not my favorite recipes, but tasty enough.

The first was a shrimp, asparagus, zucchini and orzo salad. Big Daddy Byron taught me how to pull the tails off of shrimp. Yup, 32 years old and I had no idea!  

    
I also made a one pot tomato, onion and basil pasta dish.  
I have lots of projects I want to do around the house this summer too. Painting, fixing, building. Many more Pinterest recipes and projects to conquer as well!

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