Friday, April 25, 2008

Ciaran Countdown

Just over 30 more hours to go and then Ciaran will be in town for a week!!! Sorry, had to share my excitement with everyone!!! :-) We will have survived just four days short of four VERY LONG months apart. Yay!!!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Cabin Fever

I officially have cabin fever. The kidney stone pain keeps hitting me intermittently in intense waves, which makes outings away from home next to impossible. I don't know if I still have a kidney stone passing through, or if this pain is just due to the after effects of the inevitable damage a kidney stone brings to my inner body as it passes through. Either way, I'm frustrated. This week was supposed to be a week filled with fun substitute teaching experiences and lots of cleaning and catching up with all that has been let go for the past fifteen weeks because of student teaching. Grrr...I'm a bit grouchy can you tell?! :-) But when I step back and pray for a moment, I realize that I should view this time as a gift from the Lord, time to slow down after the hectic schedule I've kept and delight in Him during this extended quiet time I now have before me. It truly is a gift when I think about it from that perspective; I just wish this gift didn't have such intense waves of pain to accompany it. Hehe.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

New ESV Study Bible!

I'm so excited! The long-awaited ESV Study Bible is set to come out in October!!! I can't wait! OK, whew, having gotten that off my chest, now for a little bit of a life update.

So my student teaching experience ended on Friday. I received lots of hugs and presents and the kids had created (with the help of the art department's student teacher) a banner for me and a bunch of the kids signed it and wrote little notes to sweet! It was a memorable day and I managed to not cry too much. Then Saturday came. As I graded the kids papers, I found myself choking up at the oddest moments. About two hours into grading, and my sadness was reaching its peak, there was a knock at the door. I went to the door and there waiting for me was a flower delivery...a dozen pale pink roses to be absolute favorite flowers!!! Ciaran had so sweetly anticipated my Saturday let-down after student teaching ended and sent them to cheer me up. Ah Ciaran, you never cease to amaze me! The weekend wore on (more pleasantly with the beautiful roses to gaze at) and after roughly nine hours of grading my student's projects, papers, etc. , and entering grades into the student teaching officially ended. I was feeling a little sad still and now had some rather annoying lower back pain to accompany my sadness, but other than that, I was ready for a new week and whatever that may bring.

And then Monday arrives...and with that some more rather intense pain...pain that made me drop to my knees crying! That's know that rather annoying lower back pain I experienced all weekend??! That wasn't the result of being hunched over all weekend grading papers, it was actually the start of none other than...KIDNEY STONES! That's right, my mortal enemy, the dreaded of the dreaded, kidney stones. So with lots of prayer and lots of pain meds and a whole lot of water I managed (by God's grace) to pass
this morning a kidney stone without going to the hospital for an IV! Woohoo!!! Praise God! I'm still pretty worn out from it, but hopefully that was the only stone and I will be getting back to my normal self soon! All right, that concludes my update for the evening. I hope everyone is having a great week! I sure that the wretched little stone is out of me. :-)

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Crying as I Grade Writing Journals

It's Sunday night and that means I'm grading papers in front of the TV. I just finished grading "Writing Journals" from last week. This is something I put off all weekend...not because they are tough to grade, but because I typically end up in tears and exhausted by the time I finish. And this week is no different. My kids' lives have been so tough, the things they have experienced are so far from my realm of knowledge and experience and it just tears me up to read about their experiences in foster homes, at the homeless shelter, living in cars, watching their siblings/family members/friends get shot in drive-bys or other violent acts, and then of course to read about the bullying that goes on. I inevitably every couple of weeks also have something I have to report to a social worker...those topics I cannot highlight here because of obvious reasons, but I do encounter those as well. As much as I am saddened by the fact that I am heading into my last week of student teaching, this emotional weekly ritual is one that I don't think I'm going to miss that much, although I will miss hearing my students' voices as I read; they have such amazing voices as writers and that has been a joy to experience and work with!

Oh and in other news, we found the owner of the stray dog I mentioned in my last post! He lives on another road not far from our house and is now safely returned to his owner. :-)

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Stray Dog

So we have the cutest dog sitting on our back deck right now. He's a chocolate lab, about one year old. Neighbors first started calling us about him on Thursday around noon because everyone thought it was our own beloved chocolate lab, Ben, roaming the neighborhood. But no, Benjamin was safely in our house at that time. So it's now Saturday, and dear puppy whom we've dubbed Jake, is now safely in our backyard, with a collar on, as we canvass the area trying to find his owner. So if you know of anyone missing a chocolate lab in the area, let me know!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Lessons in Domesticity

Student teaching has been an intense experience; one of the best experiences of my life so far, but intense all the same. So unfortunately as a result, my house has received little attention since Christmas. That is, until this spring break when I stumbled upon this lovely little website, I know, it sounds like a hokey website, but there are some amazing tidbits of information at this site. It's a great source for lessons in domesticity, if you are so inclined.

Because of this site, I now see the value in "getting dressed to my shoes" first thing in the morning (this only applies for me on non-work days...I hold off getting into high heels until I am exiting the house), shining my sink at the end of my day, working through overwhelming areas of my house in 15-minute intervals, decluttering in a systematic way, and a whole host of other things. Plus, when you sign up for their e-mail updates, they send all of these interesting ideas and helpful tips/motivations for keeping your house in working order. They also give advice on all areas of domesticity, not just cleaning. I'm thoroughly enjoying this little web-service and best of's free!