Saturday, June 30, 2012

Long lost relatives

It's about time!  We finally got our family from Florida to come visit us here in the Lone Star state.  We've been excited for weeks, and last night reminded me why.

We all got together and it's like we've never been apart.  Lots of joking around, laughing, showing each other the latest videos we've found that are funny.  We didn't even need couches.  We just spread out in the hall and stairway, talking and tormenting the cat.

As always, they assimilated right into our house.  They make themselves at home, and we're just enjoying each other's company.

So fun.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Getting there, but not quite...

I really needed a restful Summer, and I am getting some rest, but it's still not the complete rest I was hoping for because my brain is still jumbled.  I guess it's not restful because of the projects hanging over my head:

The biggest and most pressing project is an online course I'm building for the district.  I want it to be good, because like a fellow teacher pointed out, it's kind of like putting your entire soul out there to be judged.  OK, it's not that bad, but it feels that bad.  So I want to do a really good job.  It will be on twice exceptional learners, and I want to make sure the teachers learn what they need to, and that I give them current research as well.

The next is a training I'm attending mid-July.  That's not as stressful, but I need to make sure I'm prepared to use the material later in the year.

In early August I'll be teaching three classes during our Summer Institute for the district.  It's nice to get paid, but it's one more thing hanging out there.

Lastly is our campus retreats in August.  I'm presenting a large amount of material at my main campus' retreat, and a smaller amount of material at my secondary campus' retreat.  It's new to me material, and I haven't presented it before, so it will be a little stressful presenting it in front of my peers.  However, both campuses have such a great group of teachers who like to have fun and enjoy learning, so I'm sure once I get going, it will be fine.

I do like the extra responsibility, and I'm honored to know that my administrators believe in me enough to entrust me with this.  But in each event, I get about a week to prepare before presenting again.  I think next year I'll do a little less.  I do love what I do, and I think next year will be a little less stressful because I've lived and learned about splitting two campuses this year, and I'm going into this year a bit wiser. :)

Still, I'm thankful for the restful days I'm getting now. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Well, well, well....

It seems this is how I like to start my posts.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Sentimental Journey

I thought this was a great picture.  This was all that was left on the lot where mom's house used to be.  It holds a lot more meaning than just a cool tractor picture.

Well, mom's been talking to me about it for years, but this year we finally did it.  I went with mom on her sentimental journey.  She takes it every year, but this is the first year I went along.

The nice thing about it is that I finally got to see the places I've heard so much about over the years.  Her high school, which was this amazing old building that was a K-12 school when she went there.  It honestly looked like an old college.  I got to see the homes she lived in growing up, which in one case was just an empty lot with a tractor and wildflowers on it.  I took a picture of it, and it's one of my favorite from the trip.  We went by the  house I grew up in, and it was so much smaller than I remember.  Cliched, but true.  I also got a picture of the Carter house, my neighbor that I actually remember from across the street.  She loved me and used to buy me things all the time.  I was four the last time I saw her.

The funnest time, though, was going to Uncle Rex and Aunt Joyce's house.  He's my mom's older brother, and the only member of her immediate family left.  He was a riot, and I had forgotten how funny he was.  It's been 20 years since I'd seen him last, and I'm sad about that.  He and Aunt Joyce are salt of the earth people.  Straight forward, with lots of common sense and hard work.  And, he's brilliant. Truly.  He really is, but you'd never know it.  He sees no need to flaunt it.  I love that about him.

I was talking to him and telling him how much I missed the path that led between his and my mamaw's house.  There's a fence separating the houses now, since my mamaw passed away many years ago.  He looked at me and said, "Now hon, those days are gone!  There's no need to pine away for that."  That statement struck me with the matter-of-fact, common sense-ness of it all. But that's the way he is.

It was mom's sentimental journey, but so much more for me I think.  It's nice to have roots and to be reminded of all of those who invested in me and our family.  But that's all it is.  It's a reminder to keep me grounded and focused, because after all:  "Those days are gone!"  I'm so glad I got to live them, though.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

What a whirlwind

Beaumont Ranch - at TAG camp
So, since April, I've handled testing for 90 kids (3 tests each, taking about an hour to grade for each student), taught two professional development classes for a total of nine hours, spent 50 hours per week at school, hosted two TAG night extravaganzas, closed down two classrooms, attended my son's graduation, hosted two sets of parents from out of town (who for all intents and purposes fended for themselves!), and as of tomorrow, finished hosting TAG camp with my 4 colleagues and 151 students.

Add 20 pounds that I have no business adding, and it means I'm ready for summer.  However,

tomorrow at noon, I get to breath.

I love breathing.