Oh the adventures in teacher land…

Today was our open house at school.  I had two since I’m working with two grade levels.  Yes, I know I’m super cool like that.  Today was a day to go down in the memory book.  I broke a shoe (third one in about a year while at school!), had a wardrobe malfunction, tried to get a plan going for the first week, put out figurative fires, and generally run around like a chicken with my head cut off.  Whoa.  I’m tired just writing about it.  Surprisingly, I’m still in a decent mood this evening!  I think a lot has to do with the sheer ridiculousness of all the going-ons this day.  You’ve just got to laugh or at least just shake your head.  I feel off the no-coffee wagon today and saw this license plate on another teacher’s jeep in the Starbucks drive-thru today…



Yes, life is good.  Yes, I “b” teacher.  Yes, I need coffee.

I missed my morning workout today due to a 2AM bathroom break that the Mr. handled.  I feel as if I participated a little since I was awake and listening to “Do you need to pee pee?” discussion.  To make up for it (and try and turn around my crazy day!), I did a little workout at home with my two favorite spotters, H and Roscoe.  We did a twenty minute walk around the neighborhood with H in the stroller.  Then, we did the workout pictured below.

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I did that circuit 5x.  I did wait and do the sit-up/ab routine until I went inside.  I did all those other exercises while H played in his sandbox.  I only had a few interruptions to help with the “skid steer.”  The picture of me doesn’t do justice to how sweaty I was.  Seriously.  The fact that I did it outside on this 85 degree day probably had some to do with that.  I did modify the push-ups by doing 3 sets of 10 the traditional way, and then I used the stairs to make it in inclined push up (I think that’s the name).  Voila!  Workout done.  Have a great Thursday evening!  Thank goodness tomorrow is Friday!!!!

On Mountain Time

Last Friday, we packed up the car in the wee hours of the morning to head up to Massanutten, Virginia.  This was Holden’s first official vacation.  We’ve stayed in a hotel with him for a night when he was just a few months old, and we certainly travel a lot to see family.  However, this was the first “let’s go on a longish car ride, spend two nights away from all our familiar house stops, and try to have some fun!”  I confess that I was stressed about it.  I felt like I had a lot to do to prepare for the back to school week (which I’m currently in), and I also just worried that Holden would make it feel like not much of a vacation.  Well, I’m happy to report that things went smoother than anticipated.  It is helpful that I anticipate the worst, so it is highly likely that it will turn out better than I think.  😉  A vacation timeline follows…

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We did a little over 3 mile hike in the Shenandoah National Forest.  It was beautiful but overcast.  I carried Holden some using the Ergo.  I have to say this was way more comfortable than I thought it would be, but he was still a heavy beast to hike up any kind of incline with.  He did hop out and walk for a bit.  Then, we encountered some rain and some more incline.  That ended that!  The Mr. hauled the little man most the way, and he agreed that the slight incline was enough to make you wish H had longer, more nimble legs and could walk it himself!  I guess all the riding wore him out.  We noticed he had fallen asleep about the time we got back to the car.  

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We also took in Luray Caverns while we were up in the area. Holden looked around a bunch, but he definitely was in favor of the self-guided tour versus standing around and waiting for the tour guide’s info.  He picked out a blue rock (I have no idea what kind it is!) from the gift store and promptly tried to bang it on everything in sight!  We picnicked at the caverns.  Holden’s meme brought all the fixin’s for a nice lunch.  Unfortunately, the rain followed us again, and we had to eat quick!  

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The gang all visited the Luray Exotic Zoo, and I admit that the snakes grossed me out.  Although I didn’t get a picture of them, I much preferred the primates playing outside.  Once again, we had rain!  We didn’t let it ruin our plans and just used hoods and had crazy hair from all the rain!  Holden was so excited about the snakes!  He kept running around saying, “This one will bite me!”  Not sure why the thought of a snake bite would make him smile so gleefully….

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We tried to go on another hike but…you guessed it!  The rain prevented that.  Holden, the Mr., and I stayed at the house.  We  made ourselves busy with a blanket fort, hide-and-go-seek, and a little stream exploration (once the rain stopped).  We had a great time in Massanutten, but I’m sure you can guess the real reason why.  We got to spend it with some pretty fun people who happen to play a mean game of Taboo.  

Teaching Tuesday

As some of you know {or now will know}, I’m a teacher.  I teach learning disabilities special education {whatever that means} in an elementary school.  I’ve taught K-2 self-contained, K-1 self-contained, 3rd grade inclusion, and now 4th grade inclusion will join the ranks this year.  I also run a software-based reading remediation program for grades 3 – 5.  Whew!  Makes me a little tired thinking about all those different grades and settings!  I was not one of those people who knew from birth that I wanted to teach.  I confess that I didn’t even like small kids.  I mean, they were okay, but I definitely didn’t want to hang out with them all day every day.  After much thought, several different career paths, and a lot of college classes, I became a fully licensed teacher in 2009 after earning my Master’s from Old Dominion University.  I say all this, because today’s high school seniors are expected to know immediately what they want to do with their lives almost immediately upon entering high school.  I confess I was to scared to explore a lot of options.  I secretly wanted to be a chef!  Ha!  I think the hours would have done me in, but you never know!!!!  I think a lot of kids {yes, high schoolers are definitely kids} feel the pressure and throw out whatever career seems lucrative AND acceptable to their parents, peers, etc.  Now, I’m very content with teaching most days, but a part of me does wish I took a little more time to think.  A little more time to explore options.  And had a little more knowledge about myself.  However, teaching keeps me busy fully engaged, lets me help others in a real way, and lets me have the hours that we {meaning the Mr. and I} need to also spend time  with our sweet boy.  Nothing beats the feeling of seeing your students progress especially when it has been a hard struggle for them.  Sounds like a win to me!  As teachers prepare for the school year {and I know some are already teaching away!}, let’s think about some of these…








I hope each and every teacher reading this {and any homeschool moms!} has a wonderful school year.  

Meal Plan Monday

Good Monday to you!  I have a very important announcement to make…I think we are approaching the “Trying 2s!”  Little H likes to say “noooooo” and “No, I won’t.”  He also enjoys making full eye contact and doing exactly what I ask him not too.  Another favorite is not coming when called or perhaps even running away when called.  Between all this ‘tide and a 45 minute wait at the Verizon store today, I’m about done with this Monday.  Put it to bed and DONE!  Thankfully, little man is snoozing away in his room at the moment.  This is a BiG deal as he has not been sleeping well at night with lots of midnight and one 3AM performance under his belt over the weekend.  Good gravy!  In rankings of sleeplessness, last night was better than the night before.  Dare we hope for “back to normal” tonight?  I’m dreaming about it now.  

In other news, here is our meal plan for the week.


We have other plans for the weekend that I’ll be sure to share later.  I’m trying to cook different things as the summer food rotation has gotten a bit stale for us.  I personally love egg salad, but I know some people who are completely grossed out by it.  I have to be out and about during dinnertime on Thursday night, so I will prepare it in advance for the Mr.’s dinner and tub duty that night.  I make up my own marinades depending on how I’m feeling.  It is usually olive oil combined with salt, pepper, and various spices or herbs.  An even simpler way is to just toss some Italian dressing in a freezer gallon-size bag and add your beef (in our case, venison!), seafood, or chicken.  Very easy!  I do recommend marinating at the very least 30 minutes but preferably 2 or 3 hours in the fridge.  

Pictures to Share:  

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Breakfast al fresco/chevron thank you notes/a new dining room light fixture two months in the making/what happened while I checked email

Have a great start to the week!



A little obsessed…

Hi friends!  I’m busy savoring these last few days of summer.  We visited the beach today for a bit, ate ice cream, and washed my car.  I think those are all seasonably appropriate activities.  Right?!?!?!  All I’ve heard about this coming fall and winter is that it is going to be a doozey.  Yikes.  I did reach for a few fall favorites today which included the crock pot and a good book.  I cooked up the recipe below…  Now, crock pot recipes are not my favorite because they are the most delicious.  No, no that isn’t it.  It was yummy {not like out of this world, but still yummy}, and it cooked itself after a little prep by me and my sous chef.  

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I also read for a ridiculously long time (aka all of nap time!).  I just finished the second book, Insurgent, in the Divergent series.  I highly recommend both books.  They are action-packed which I love with good character development in my opinion.  I never read novels, and now I remember why.  I become obsessed on finishing them as fast as possible much to the detriment of things like laundry, tidying up, etc.  I don’t have the third book.  I’d probably be reading instead of typing if I did!  HA!  Here is a link to the aptitude test that is used to help place people in the book into various factions.  See where you would end up in the futuristic world.  Guess what?  I’m divergent!  LOL!  I admit that I’m not too surprised!  

Unknown-1 UnknownA few more pictures of Mister Man for your viewing pleasure!

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Tired Tuesday

Happy Tuesday evening!  I’m thinking all my weekend fun has caught up to me!  We had a great time visiting friends and family on the Eastern Shore.  We had a wonderful beach day in Cape Charles, a relaxing Saturday hanging out at my sister’s lovely almost finished home, a date night{!}, church, and a two burger Sunday {I’m a fan of ground beef, so it’s all good with me!}.  The fun didn’t even stop on Monday.  We visited friends and were treated to a yummy lunch at one of my favorite restaurants.  The company was as great as the food.  I got my standard fare, a veggie sandwich with the wine country salad.  Apparently, I am transparently predictable as my sister stated my order before I could.  😉  Some pictures of our fun times…

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Didn't I say my sister has a great place!!!  Love this map in her living room.  Pinterest looks to be blowing up around there!

Didn’t I say my sister has a great place!!! Love this map in her living room. Pinterest looks to be blowing up around there!


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Gotta love the not-so-picture-perfect last picture!  Speaking of not so perfect, our Monday was crazy!  We dropped in on an old friend {aka invited ourselves, H and I}, and poor little H had a major potty training mishap all over the brand spanking new bathroom.  I was mortified.  H was crying.  You-know-what seemed to get just about everywhere!  Thank goodness we were with an old friend who took it all in stride and graciously assured me that it was okay.  Yikes!  All of this makes me one tired turkey tonight.  I tried to get back on the workout wagon with an early morning workout, but I totally was dragging today.  I’m almost sure that it was mostly due to my lack of protein-rich eats today.  I’ve really been on a yuck-to-meat thing.  I can’t stand chicken (yes, I plan to make chicken one night this week), and I tend to pick other things to fill in my plate.  For instance, my Cherrios and milk breakfast with cranberries was just a silly idea after a 60 minute workout.  I was a starvin’ Marvin by 9!  The silliness continued with a snack of two graham cracker sheets…um, hello!  Not a lot to hold me over to lunch there!  And I’m totally aware of this and the ridiculousness of it.  To round out the day, I snack on chocolate cover banana chips…very random…and salted caramels.  You can bet I was definitely starving AGAIN by dinner.  What I can include from this food roll call is that I need to make some better choices!  And I know so much better than this!  Here’s to a better, more energetic day tomorrow.

Let’s see…

Breakfast – 1 egg, 1 piece of toast, cantaloupe

Snack – Greek yogurt 

Lunch – Baked Ziti (leftover) with a salad

Snack – almonds and cranberries

Dinner – to be decided…  (either Salmon Cakes or some Asian-inspired Chicken)

Hope your hump day is healthy!  I’m starting off with a dentist visit.  😦