Monday, August 23, 2010

Blue Run, Blue Gator, and a Birthday

I called Annie on Friday to tell her all about Meet the Teacher when she announced that Blue Run was available for the weekend.  What a great surprise that was!  So Saturday morning we woke up excited for a day on the Run when we heard raindrops.  We were bummed but,  we did not give up.  Before lunch time we headed down there to at least eat at the Blue Gator if it would stop raining.  When we arrived it looked promising, and the sun was trying to poke its way out from behind the clouds.  It ended up being an amazing afternoon filled with a spicy ranch hamburger from Blue Gator and a ride up to the head of the river for a crystal clear water swim.   Late afternoon we headed home to celebrate William’s  (Adam’s cousin) birthday.  He is a die hard gator fan like the hub so earlier this summer when we spotted gator shoes at Wal-Mart we thought of him.  The only Wal-Mart we saw them at was the store in Dunnellon so it was meant to be.  When Annie and I went to Sonic for our happy hour lime-aids run we picked up a pair of those shoes for the birthday boy.   Check out his excitement !



Devin, William, and Adam

It was a great night celebrating William!  While there we got to enjoy all the babies.  Not having our own we have the best time playing and watching the little ones.  AB, Willie, Michael and Madelyn had so much fun playing together.


Before we left Adam was playing with Willie and I was loving on Madelyn, when Steph mentioned what a great “family photo” it was.  Haha!  How does having two babies suit us?



Sunday morning I went up to school for about an hour to make sure everything was ready for my new first graders on Monday.  I really didn’t need to go but, I was stressing.  To see that I am ready put me at ease.  After that we headed back to Blue Run for more fun in the sun.  Unfortunately God had another plan for us yesterday morning .  On our way down we spotted a horrible crash on the side of the road which ended up being another one of Adam’s cousin.  We stopped to check on them and I am so glad we did.  Us being there to reassure them that everything would be ok helped them calm down and get the medical care they needed.  Adam’s cousin and his wife ended up being ok, but it was a scare for them.  We were thankful that there little ones were not with them.  After seeing the truck I just have to believe and praise God for his protection of them that Sunday morning.  He is so good!  We have to remember how precious our lives are and to praise Him for all we have been given! 

Once we got to Blue Run we had a blast with Devin, Annie, and AB!  We swam, floated, dived, ate, and laughed!!  It was a great day being together!


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Friday, August 20, 2010

Prayer and Preparation

Today I get to meet my little ones at Meet the Teacher and I can hardly contain my excitement.  From the moment I complete one year I begin to pray for my new students as well as the safety and continued growth of my past students.  I use this time of prayer to talk with God about designing the perfect group for me, guiding me in my decisions as their teacher, and about their safety and well being.  A new school year means new smiles, clean carpets, fresh starts, challenges, collaboration, and much room to grow!  I am prepared as I can be, but I feel it is never enough.  I could always do one more thing to make my class more welcoming, get one more thing copied,  etc.  This feeling may be my mother’s OCD/type A personality coming out it me.   This weekend I will fret over being ready, lose sleep that I was banking on getting to be fresh Monday AM, but I don’t think I will be the only teacher feeling this way.  Remember me in your prayers as our school year begins and takes shape for much learning!  Pray for Adam that he does not kill me in the process, bless this man for all he puts up with! I love him for all he does!



Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lily’s New Lounge

The porcelain sink must be a cool place to lay in the summer heat!

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Happy Wednesday!!


Monday, August 16, 2010

A Mountain Getaway

Adam and I always try to get away for a day or weekend trip before school starts back.  We were unsure of what to do when Adam’s dad asked if we would like to go to the mountains with them for a couple of days.  We accepted and I am so glad we did.  Earlier last week I had been stressing about the school year and being prepared for my students, but I am now rejuvenated and excited for the year to begin. 

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We headed out Wednesday night after the guys got back from Methodist Men and arrived at 3:30 AM.  Ya you read AM!  Adam and I had the second shift of driving…I blogged to stay awake as we trucked along!  Once we arrived we settled in and planned for a lazy morning at the cabin.   We woke up to the Smokey mountains Thursday morning…what a view!!

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Around lunch time we headed out to check out Dry Falls.  The falls were beautiful and reminded me of my summers visiting my grandma in Michigan.  Grandma D and the family always spent a day driving around to check out all the nearby waterfalls.  While at Dry Falls I stepped in a puddle and it had me seriously rethinking our adventure for the next day…whitewater rafting!  The water was freezing, no comparison to the much warmer waters of Blue Run.  

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After our falls adventure we head on to the small town of Highlands.  Highlands was my kind of town!  It had beautiful views, bridges, inns, a chocolate shop and many fun shops! 

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As soon as we pulled into Highlands we stopped for a photo session at this amazing wood bridge.  At the same site was this interesting maze design made out of vines we had to go check out.  Adam even found an apple tree but the apples were not ripe yet.   We are use to coming to the mountains during the fall when all the apples are delicious!

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In town the flower boxes were amazing.  I need to go to a class that teaches me how to plant flowers that compliment each other.   The outside patios were inviting and welcoming.  The store fronts were beautiful and made me want to visit each shop.  We went to the local fudge and ice cream shop…oh my…delicious.  Adam got “Highlands Mud” and I could have eaten the whole thing if he would have let me.  We headed home for afternoon naps because, we all were still tuckered out from our drive the night before.  The naps were just what we needed to prepare for our evening of feasting at The Dillard House.  I had never been and everyone assured me I was in for a treat. Boy was I excited!!!

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We had fired chicken, roast beef, maple glazed ham, but those didn’t excite me, it was the sides that came with!  The sides we had at The Dillard House did not disappoint…green beans, fried okra, potatoes a gratin, creamed corn, carrots, cabbage casserole, acorn squash casserole, fruit, tomatoes…do I even need to continue.  It is safe to say I rolled out of there after I topped it all off with peach cobbler!   We checked out the farm animals before we head home.  Two words…baby goats….oh my were they cute!  They were running, jumping, bucking, biting, and head butting each other.  We wanted to crawl over the fence and grab one!

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When we got to the cabin I enjoyed the view of the Smokey Mountains at night.  I loved how we could see the lights of Franklin down below. 

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I was ready for our whitewater rafting adventure the next morning.  I had only been whitewater rafting once a long time ago so I was excited and nervous. The hub and my father-in-law were trying to freak me out the entire ride there.  We stopped along the way to snap pictures.  The top picture in this collage had a momma and fawn getting a drink from the Nantahala River.

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Compliments of Pug’s big zoom lens camera!

We were pumped to get started rafting down the river!! I was praying I wouldn’t fall in.  I was having flashbacks from when I step in that freezing cold puddle of water the day before.  We had a pretty good ride down “only” getting stuck on TWO rocks with Adam’s dad falling out of the boat the second time.  I was so proud of him because he went into his “swimmers position”…he watched the video…ha!  Adam grabbed him from the top of his PFD (personal floatation device) and we were off again.  Adam’s dad bought a waterproof camera to take some pictures but we he had to buy the picture taken at the last rapid because of our expressions.  Hilarious!  It was a great day with many memories!

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Our faces are priceless right?  HA!

On Saturday we wanted to go to Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, but the weather was putting a damper on our day.  The goal was to ride the sky lift to the top of one of the mountains in Gatlinburg, and eat dinner at the Apple barn in Pigeon Forge.  since it was raining we headed on to Pigeon forge and ate lunch at the Apple Barn instead of dinner. 

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  The star of the lunch were definitely their famous apple fritters.  I could eat those all day!! 

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After we walked through the gift shop, check out the bakery, candy shop, winery, and creamery.  The creamery caught our eye…the sign said “apple cobbler with homemade ice cream”.  Even though we were miserable from over eating at lunch we all split one!  It was worth it!

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We got some great pictures at the scenic stops along the road ways!SD 2 005  

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It was the perfect get away before the school year!  We are so thankful Pug, Kellee, and Kelsey wanted us to tag along!  



Saturday, August 14, 2010

Summer Memories

Summer is for catching your breath and catch up with the women we hold close to our hearts.  I have had a great time this summer  meeting up for lunch/breakfast with the women who have played a huge role in making me the woman I am today.


While in Tampa early this summer I slipped away for coffee and breakfast with my best friend Bonnie from high school.  I went to UF and she went to the “other” Florida school, but it didn’t change our relationship one bit.  I can call Bonnie at anytime and pick up right where we left off even if several months have past.  We have laughed, loved, cried, cheered, sang, and experienced life together and I am truly honored to have her in my life.


I hit up McAllister's with this cheerful crew!  I met Stephanie in the UF Proteach program and am grateful, since she introduced me to my hub.  When we graduated with each other August 2008 we looked forward to teaching first grade together in Williston.  She is now  staying home with her handsome fellow Willie, and I will miss her at school.  It had been forever since just her and I got together away from school stuff.  Even though she is in the mommy phase of life, I still want our friendship to grow and for us to cherish our time together. 


Interns reunited at the delicious Blue Highway Pizza.  Susan and I talked for hours while enjoying Blue Highway’s amazing pizza.  We were paired together our senior year of college for a dyad internship at a school that was 30 minutes away.  When women have that much time on their hands they talk and build a friendship.   We talked school, houses, love, friends, happiness, and weddings!  She is planning a spring wedding to her dream guys and I am ecstatic for her.  We lost touch once and decided it would not happen again so we have plans together again in September after the mad rush of the school year beginning is over. 


Most of my summer adventures have included these two!  My PEOPLE!  Annie and Annabelle are my partners in crime.  I am sad to be heading back to work because it means I won’t see “as much” of them.  No more GLEE marathons, summer bible study, lazy beach days, rabbit hops, floating in Blue Run, tea parties, and sweet sugar from Annabelle at the drop of a hat.  It does however mean Gator football is beginning and we have our annual football trip to look forward to, days off from school shopping trips and fall bible study at church.  Annie may be my sister- in-law but to me she is a SISTER and for that I am grateful!

I am blessed to have so many amazing women in my life.  It can be hard to keep up with friends when you let life get in the way, but then again these women are the reason your life is rich and full.   


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Is it time already?

Is it time for new Crayola crayons to be put out and names to be written on name tags? 

Pre-planning starts on Monday and I cannot believe summer is over!  Where did the time go…oh yeah 4 days of SUMS (Students Understanding Math and Science), 3 days of Deep FRI, 4 days of FRI, and 1 data day scattered throughout your summer puts a damper on your relaxation.   I did get to enjoy fun in the sun at the beach and the river with my favorite people, however I wish there was more time so I could visit my Tampa people I miss so much.  

I have worked a day here and there in my room trying to prepare for the new year.  There are things I changed and things I kept the same.  Here are pictures and remember I still have a whole week left to finish it up and make more changes :)



Our school theme is “Get Wild About Learning” again and each hallway chose a habitat last year.  Our hallway was the tropical islands last year, and even though I am the only one still around from that vote  I decided to keep it the same in front of our room.   I have a new set of starfish of course, that I cannot wait to meet next Friday at Meet the Teacher! 

Now as you step into the room you enter a different world.  A world of sports, primary colors and all things TEAM!!  I spent so much money and time my first year I couldn't fathom changing my class theme again so I am still TEAMing it, which I love.  


Come on in for a look!


Put your book bag up in the Locker Room first!


Find your seat!


Check out the library (not a good picture because I am hiding a pile of vines on the floor…ha)


Come sit and enjoy a story in our new reading corner on the “big summer purchase” a cute classroom rug.  We are ready to add things to our reading wall and pick out good fit books for our green book bags so we can begin learning how to read to self with stamina!


Class computers with hopefully 2 more for our center rotations.  Above the computers will be our writing area.  The trash can is for “outlaw words” such as, like and love when we learn how to write with varied sentence structure. 



A new place to display student work over the other computer table.  I used the cabinets to display work last year but I want to put their self portraits there this year.  So the cabinets will be bare until the students arrive.  I did add picture labels to drawers  so the students can find different class supplies they need.  


Here is my small group table, filing cabinet, and my picture board.  Yes, that is a table covered in junk!  I have one place that is my catch all until I find places for it.  It looks like I have some work to do next week …eek!

Something new and really exciting for our class is in this box! Do you know what could be in it?




Which will hopefully go right under the overhead screen.  Once the SMART board is in place I will put my magnetic word wall back up to the left.  I just hope maintenance gets it up next week because I have big plans for it. 


My big plans are to do my math calendar time on the SMART board which would mean I could take down most of this wall for other Anchor charts we make through out the year.  So this area is a big work in progress, hanging on the chance the SMART board gets mounted next week!  Cross your fingers for me :)

Thanks for touring with me!  I can’t wait to meet my 18 first grade little darlings next Friday!