One of my favorite things about the holiday--as it should be--is faithful friends that are dear to us, gather near to us once more! Thank you all for your Christmas cards and cookies and visits and calls!
Last night Cami&Simon, Marta&Joel, Jacy&Roger, Heidi&Andy, and I got together at the Pizza Factory for food, folks, and fun. I love that even though I look awkwardly like the only single person there--I never feel othered around you guys! This is the old high school gang with the husbands, Heather&Kirk, and Melissa&Ben, Scully and Chad, we wish ya'll could have been there with us!
So---a girl I have been having problems with all year slipped a really bad swear word into the newspaper this month and the administration are really really mad. By 9:40 a.m. they had already received two parent phone calls. Our paper came out at 9:00 a.m.
She also changed the words in one of the other girl's articles to call someone a "ho" in it, and that girl is livid because it makes her look bad and her friends have already been like wow, I didn't know you talked that way--.
How did this all happen under my tuteledge? Well, on Saturday morning I was at school helping my layout editor put the finishing touch on the paper. THe other girl, the said troublemaking girl, stayed a little longer to finish her funny page. AFter an hour I asked her if she was done yet, and walked over to the computer. She had completely rearranged the whole paper saying I hope(the girl who put together the rest of the paper)doesn't mind! She did mind, a lot. Needless to say at that point all I could do was have her clean up her mess--little did I know she would make more of a mess by deleting an article I needed in the paper, changing words in another article and slipping in a bad, bad word.
They have really scaled down Temple Square once again this holiday season, but it still wouldn't be Christmas for me without seeing the lights. This time we got to go to the First Presidency's Christmas Devotional, and meet Reece's girlfriend. (Yes, my little brother is passing me up). Despite the scaled-down effects you can't help but feel the spirit of Christmas on Temple Square. Not only did I attend the Christmas Fireside this year but also the Tab Choir/Orchestra concert. It was amazing! Holiday events with music and lights lift my spirits and remind me how wonderful life really can be. I love Christmas time!
Date your dad. I am old enough to live in a house to have a credit card to run a successful savings account have two college degrees to buy what I want when I want to to fly over the ocean by myself to have a grown-up job to have a cell phone to buy my own new car to have a fake Christmas tree to own couches to wear dark eyeliner to wear lipstick to the gym. I am old enough to date your brother, your uncle, your cousin, BUT NOT YOUR DAD. I don't care if he thought I was cute at Parent Teacher Conferences. I am not old enough to date your date, or inherit you as 17 year old son. And despite what my mother says, I don't think I'm old enough to date at 38 year old.
My journalism class collected money and put a tree in the Festival of the Trees that benefits the Primary Children's Medical Center. Although there were hundreds of beautiful trees that dwarfed our cute little 4 1/2 foot tree, and tree was only purches for a few hundred dollars, the rewards of doing service are great.
Sometimes "fun" things are a lot more work than work itself, but the stress is worth it. The kids were pretty excited about, and I was too.
A small number of kids were able to go with me up to the event to see our tree after it was sold. Sadly, every member of our class couldn't come, but those that could got a day off of school and a free meal at Chilis! :D
Our tree was dedicated to spreading literacy and had little rolled up copies of our student newspaper and childrens books tied all over the tree. Stacks of books were placed underneath. All in all it was a pretty neat project for us!
I have begun to have a little problem with a few students googeling me! I guess it was just a matter of time, but it really is obnoxious how much kids can find out about you on the internet if they want to. I have my facebook profile security set pretty high, so my students tell me in frustration that they cannot find me! Good. But apparently, one of my students found me on the university alumni page, found my age, when I graduated from the univeristy (all of this info I keep very private from my students). Another student found me on a teacher-rating website the kids in our town use, and I asked her politely not to tell me what kids are saying about me, because I don't want to know or be paranoid, alhtough she told me I have a glowing-rating except for one which said...Argh! Don't tell me! Pooh. I then accidentally snapped at this student, who is actually one of my all-time favorite students, when she told me should found all of my old articles I wrote for the university in my college days online, and she read them. And told me what she thought of them. And told me she didn't realize they would keep articles from way-back-then.
I shouldn't be annoyed, they are just curious, I know. But I try to keep that line of professionalism there. I don't want them knowing too much about my life outside of teaching. I don't want them to know my age and see all my photos ect. That's just weird!
I am not the kind of person that freaks about about internet privacy, but I do think it's weird when kids are seeing their teacher's photos and everything on facebook and know too much about their private lives! It's weird to me when I hear from students that their teachers have added them as friends online. Not that I am judging per say, but I want to stay as far away from trouble as possible!
FOr now my policy is as always; STOP googeling me! :D
Okay, okay, we are not supposed to be talking about goals until January! But, seeing how January is not too far away---I am trying to tick a few more things off of my 2008 list. Now, this one I did a while ago, but have not yet posted pictures. On my list of things to do this last year, and the year before that, was to hike Mt. Timp in Provo! This is a long, all-day hike, that frankly, I have been scared of for a very long time. This year I set a date, found a crew, and hiked it on the said date, even though it snowed! This made is all the more challening, and all the more fun, well, if you ask me anyway--. :D Because of the snow we only made it to the top of the saddle, about 1 mile or so from the top of the mountain.
Here's to finishing up 2008 with a bang! Get a few more memories in this year! :D
Sometimes when I have a gray day or gray week, (of which this has been one) my mind retreats into memory and imagination. I long for all of the things that give me comfort. Here's my list of things I long for this week:
Fuzzy Slippers Carey Grant Movies Flannel Backed-Quilts PJ Pants Sweatshirts Hot Chocholate A Fireplace/Fire Love Stories Family PASTA Good Conversation Warm Sunshine Everything Done! My Favorite Song on the radio Nothing to do. Coats, Hats, & Mittens Pony-Tails The Smell of Fresh Cut Grass Soup Shopping Trips Grilled-Hamburgers! Scrapbooking Laughter Fresh-Air-Outings Anthropologie and the Pottterybarn Pumpkin-Anything Frank Sinatra Friends.
It's this generation's Grease, and Footloose, and Clueless; the high school movie that informs all high schoolers what their life should be like. There are slutty girls, show-hogs, nice girls, dorky-guys, hot-guys, and ballers. I'm just glad this one is relatively clean. You've got to hand it to Disney! They made a lot of money on this film-trio, and will continue to.
I saw the first HSM just six months ago, never saw the second one, and only skeptically paid $8 (I know, I know!) just last weekend to see HSM3. And I admit it--I enjoyed it. You just can't help it, at least I couldn't. The music is good, the male lead is embarrasingly attractive (at least he is 21!) and you get swept away--at least with laughter at the silly situation of sitting in a theater with only 5 guys in it, and the rest girls--giggle when Zac Effron come on the set. All I have to say is, I know it is cheezy--but if it has to be this generation's high school hit--atleast it is clean!
Over-the-top moment: The end where at graduation they all sing how they wish the rest of their lives will be like a high school musical...lame.
Best-music-moment: Zac Effron and Corbin Bleu singing "The Boys are Back."
Most-redemptive-moment: When the scholarships actually go to the people that deserve it.
Overall impression: I am far enough removed from my own high school experience that I wasn't offended or sensetive about any of the "hits-home" moments, and I am close enough to high school everyday, that I was absurdly touched by moments like this: Once a wildcat, always a wildcat, and I could hear my students say: Once a lion, always a lion.
Recommendation: even if you don't want to pay $8, Netflix it at least, it is some good-clean-fun!
Although I did not vote for Barak Obama, and am not super excited at the prospect of him as our president--I teared up tonight as he won the presidency. I agree that it is huge for our country to have an African American president; and as the CNN Republican commentator said, only the worst of us would deny that this has some historic significance.
John McCain gave a very gracious speech tonight, even though he lost--I was quite impressed with that as well--although a little bit long.
It will be interesting and possibly a little scary to see a House and Senate and President all Democrat...but nevertheless I am proud of our country being ready to to vote for an African American.
Interestinly, according to all of the exit polls, it was not really a race issue, or atleast that is what they are saying--he won across the board, the young, the single women, the ethnic voters, and even a large portion of the men.
Interestinly as well, McCain didn't lose too awfully bad in the popular vote, which supports again (at least for me) my opinion that we need to get rid of the electoral college.
And, do you think gas prices have been going down during the election for political reasons? Just a thought that has crossed my mind--.
Teachers are what is know as "exempt" employees which means employers can ask as much as they want of you and not pay you extra for it. Usually they do try to compensate, but often they do not.
I currently teach 11th grade American Lit, 10th grade "regular" English, and journalsim where it is a circus as I attempt to corral 13 students into publishing a monthly newspaper. I am also the school's PR person, which means I am responsible with spamming the community with the wonderful-ness of our high school!
Today they came to me and asked me if I would work for $25 dollars a night teaching night school, to our less-than-desirable-bunch that there is not room for in the alternative school.
I have until tommorrow to give them my final answer.
According to the "Does Birth Order Matter," article in the new BYU Today magazine the second child recieves 20-30 minutes less attention per day than the oldest child, which adds up to approximately 3,000 less hours of energy parents put into their second child. In fact "Firstborns generally get more and better education, score higher on tests, and end up with jobs that pay more." pp 26
Read it, it's interesting, especially to those of us who are the second child! http://magazine.byu.edu/?act=view&a=2288
Interestinly they don't offer any suggestions really on how to change it, and says coming from an LDS family doesn't really make a difference in these statistics. I guess just being aware of it will help all us pay more attention to our current/future second children!
I hate confrontation, and I pride myself on being fairly adaptable, and so often I make do with a situation without fixing it. I know this is masking itself as a good trait, but really I am having to learn to put my foot down. Sometimes if you don't put your foot down, the other person has no idea you have a problem. And no one has Experanza ESP, often not even me!
I finally had to go in to the administration at my school and demand, in fact tell them, "I'm at the end of my rope on this one," about a computer problem in my room. I had asked nicely on several occasions for the problem to please be fixed, (it has to do with the functionability of my journalism computers and hence our ability to put out a good newspaper), and it was never fixed! I sent e-mails, and in a smile-y matter discussed on a number of occasions. But I finally had to say, it is the middle of October, fix-it-for-me-now. I couldn't do the confrontation thing without a million, "I'm sorry for complaining about this...." type phrases, but it got the job done.
This morning an administration came in and fixed the problem and said I'm sorry, I didn't realize it was such a big deal, I thought you were making due, you never really complained about it. Hmph. Well, at least it is fixed, and I am learning to put my foot down, although the graceful part of that will have to come later. I should fiqure out a way to complain nicely before I am at the end of my rope!
Journalism Field Trip to the Dreaded Grove, 2008. I endorse wholesome recreational activities! One of my students got us in free to the Dreaded Grove--not too scary, but really a lot of fun. Nothing like running away from scary clowns to bond you together! :D
I read all of your blogs and see all of the wonderful things you have, husbands and babies and I am so excited for you all! Kind of jealous it's true--I want to be doing what you all are doing! I know you would say, oh, there are advantages of being single, and I am sure there are, but I long for those relationships that we are told have the potential to bring us the greatest joy in life.
I can't say anything terribly interesting is happening right now. I have been playing with some cute boys lately, but nothing interesting to report there. I teach 151 crazy teenagers and it has its daily challenges, but that is what I like about teaching--my life needs a good challenge now and then.
I will have to say in this report about my terribly interesting life :D that I have been trying to do some hard things lately to help me re-invent myself. When my ward went to a ropes course for fhe I tried all the crazy things and dared myself to do them, even if it meant screaming for everyone to hear. I climbed Mt. Timpanogos today for the first time--even though it was snowing and 20 degrees. I have always wanted to climb Timp and have just never done it knowing it would be a huge challenge for me. I have been working on taking up running for the last couple of years, and although a 10k is all I have run, it is something to help me stay healthy. I have daily challenges with work, running the school newspaper, being the PR person for our high school and going through the constant evaluations "new-ish" teachers have to go through. I am working always on trying to make myself more avaliabe and open to the idea of dating someone seriously which is a challenge for me, and I am trying really hard to understand and like football. So there you have it. Me currently--working on me.
Now, I don’t believe in holding guys to the standard of “tests” that they don’t know they are being put to, or necessarily holding them to expectations they don’t know you have set for them, or judging them on one single incident, but…with all of those disclaimers, I will have to say that it is food for thought when you ask multiple guy-friends if they can help you screw something together (i.e. a vacuum) and it takes you 2 weeks and multiple solicitations, and you finally try one more guy, and he comes over after one solicitation, saying he can come anytime you need him, with a borrowed screwdriver. I’m not saying this guy is better than anyone of the other guys, but it is just interesting to see which one of your friends will drop what they are doing to help you when you really need it. And then he asked if there was anything else we needed fixing! Good guy.
Ward campout. Bedtime 2:00 a.m. after flirting around the fire, three girls, one 1 1/2 person tent. Tent mates decide they hear bears outside our tent. Suddenly I feel a body jump on top of me. Sleeping on top of everyone else is apparently safer. Personally I think if a bear came romping into the tent they would go right for the person in the middle before the outside, but whatever. I just tried to sleep through it, but I was in and out of consciousness. Needless to say none of us got any sleep because the two of them were poised waiting for the bear, ears strained for the slightest noise. The thing is, if there really was bear, he or she wouldn't have been on their tip-toes. They don't crawl up silent as a mouse, there would have been some serious breathing, tent ripping, body snatching, and blood. But whatever. We survived and actually had quite the fun time. But seriously, reminds you of those late night babysitting adventures where you think someone is peaking in the window or you hear phantom tires in the driveway. The thing is, seriously, when you do a hear a freaky noise, that's just it, you hear it. :D
Okay, I know this is a really opinionated article and may offend some, but Ensign article on what it feels like to be a single Mormon aside, here is an interesting link to a blog about how hard it can be to be a single Mormon. Don't worry, there are graphs and charts to make it more intriquing!
"Most LDS singles marry in the 20-25 year old age range. We marry young. Agree with the wisdom of this concept or not, mormon people marry young--except for those that don't. I, my patient reader, am one that did not. And, indeed, may not.
You want to know why, don't you?
Well, I'm sure all my friends and relatives have their own hypotheses. I'm abrasive. I'm combative. I look like I'm mad all the time. I'm too tall. I act like I'm smarter than everybody else. I'm cynical. My expectations are too high. I'm too prudish. I'm too slutty. I've heard all of these from "friends" or family.
Well, you're all wrong. The real reason lies in Emily K's Theory of the Mormon Scale of Attractiveness. Allow me to explain." If you want more, go to the link and read on!
Or a week's worth of work, but wait, it's only Tuesday.
So, yesterday I made a student cry for the first time. Okay, so maybe there are little kids crying every night over my classes and I just don't know about it, but I did make a real student cry in front of me today. She thinks I hate her! She has only shown up to class twice and she thinks I hate her. WELL, we got it all worked out and had an 1 1/2 hour heart to heart though my WHOLE prep period, but hey, all in a day's work. Turns out her boyfriend had just broken up with her too!
Today I had a group of boys who were definitely crossing over into the inappropriate for school conversation, right in the middle of group work in my class. It was just disgusting. I pulled aside, all four of them after class and let them know their conversation could be considered sexual harrassment (scared the pants off of them), and let them know we could all have a talk in the principal's office about appropriate school behavior if we needed to. Wow, I was mean. I feel good about that.
So, what's on tap for tomorrow, I mean next week, well, at least it feels like it should be anyway!
McCain chose Sarah Palin, what do we think? It is going to be so completely fascinating to see how this election will turn out! The media is already all over the fact that she is a mother of 5, the youngest with Downs Syndrome and whether she will have the remaining emotional energy to be a VP. AND they are making a huge deal over the fact her 17 year old daughter is prego. Huh, I don't really know enough about her at this point to make a huge judgement, but it is just so interesting! You could take this a million ways and I am sure the media will. Did he choose a woman to play the woman card? Are we automatically assuming she would do a worse job than Hillary would have just because she has five kids and a pregnant daughter? The whole woman in politics thing is just so intriguing. Will this cost McCain the presidency or gain it for him? Will she take some of Hillary's former votes because she is a woman? What is sexier for America, a black president or an old white guy with a woman for VP? Interesting, fascinating, intriquing politics! Sarah Palin's daughter has a Republican mother, she couldn't poltically have an abortion, could she?
wear these yet. that my brother says makes me look younger and not like a teacher. (HUH?!) Yeah, he said he didn't mean it that way. (HAha) And I noticed almost all of the guy's jeans in the store had these: And frankly, I think they look femme. I don't think straight men wear these yet, nor should they, but I have no doubt they will be. The only guy wearing them in the store was gay, and so when I tried to aruge with him (in a friendly manner) about their style-ability, he says I just haven't seen them around enough yet. True. But seriously, they make guys look like they have a girl-rear. I know gay men set a lot of our fashion, but how far is too far. Okay, they aren't as bad as the whole, guys-wearing-actual-girl-jeans thing from a year or so ago, and maybe you could tell me these are not that bad, but I think they are hideous!
Every junior high and high school student's worst nightmare. School picture day, electrical outlet blows while blow drying my hair, late for school, big zit. Nice. Some things never change. I'm not going to accept my free year book this year, unless I can get retakes!
Friday- Thank goodness for nice people. After a stressful long week, the first week of school,Walmart is totally packed with huge long lines and I finally make it up to the front of the line with my $90.00 worth of groceries and I realized I forgot my wallet on the passanger seat of my car--which I neglected to replace after buying $60.00 worth of gas. Thinking of how annoyed I would be if I was one of the 5 carts behind me loaded down with groceries and children, I dash out to my car, running actually, grab my wallet and run back in, just a few moments after the cashier finished ringing up my groceries. She laughed and smiled, as did the woman with the full cart behind me.
Just got back from my last summer trip before school starts! My family had a mini-reunion in Indiana and Ohio! For those of you who don't know my sister's family just moved back from Germany and now live in Indiana, where my brother in law works at IU. Here are a few fun pics from our trip! We went to Amish country, and played in a few beautiful parks, toured IU, went to Nashville,Indiana, which is a fun little shopping town, and just hung out with the family!
My long-lost relative. At Indiana University. Um, dad threatened to disown us! We stopped to have a little fun in the Kroger's parking lot. I love my family! Haha. The girls at Mama Bear's in Bloomington, Indiana, the #4 best pizza parlor in the USA, according to People's Magazine. Here is a shot of the whole family. Reece & I in a playhouse type thing in a park in Columbus, Ohio, acting like frogs, apparently.
So, the new Ensign article on single people talks about having good friends to help you cope with being single forever. And I think that is so true. I love all of my good girl friends that I have had forever, and recently as well. I am so grateful for the listening ears and the good times that keep me from being lonely. If I can't be married yet, at least I have all of my wonderful girl friends, including all of you!
My childhood world was populated by knights and princesses; cowboys and indians, even talking animals; not anywhere was there, not even once, an alien, or a spaceship, or an astronaut of any kind. Maybe it is because my dad wasn't into that kind of thing, and my only brother was 8 years younger than me, and was not into that either. So while I can be scared of mass-murders, non-alien-fantasy monsters, evil princes, ROUS even, I can't be scared by aliens. My suspension of disbelief cannot be breached with aliens! They just don't scare me because to me they just cannot exist on this earth.
This being said, Scully (wonderful friend!) invited me to have some fun with her and some friends this Pioneer weekend for an X-Files marathon, pre-the new movie. And much to my suprise I enjoyed myself! I don't think I will ever be a huge fan (primarily because of the alien thing), but the plots are intriguing, and D.D. is a very good-looking man. So, will I ever be scared, fasinated or intirigued by aliens? No, but I can enjoy some good entertainment. The second movie was good, I thought, but my lack of X-Files experience doesn't make me a good judge.
And I am going to try reading Stephanie Meyer's The Host, which consequently is about aliens, and try one more time to see if I can have suspension of disbelief.