life · PreK class

It’s Monday!

What a busy month this has been. I feel like the weeks are flying by and we will soon be posting about Christmas plans.  Eek, never mind I’m not ready to go there yet.

This weekend we went out kayaking for 3 hours. Let me tell you that if you kayak correctly, you get a really good core workout. I was focusing on keeping my “paddle box” and not paddling with my arms as much. I could really feel it in my lower back and abs. We saw the blue herons, cormorants, blue jays and ducks. This was scheduled to be a fall leaf tour, but the leaves still haven’t changed here. I think this is going to be a very blah fall. The leaves aren’t changing, but they have started to fall off the trees. I hate falls like this. There is something magical about the colors of fall and when they don’t turn it feels like something is missing. This is one of the changes I was glad to have again when we moved to PA. I always missed the color changes when I lived in FL.

Today was one of “those days” at school. You have those days from time to time where you feel like it must be a full moon, but it’s not. I must be talking in a different language, but I’m not. Ummm ok it’s just an off day. Tomorrow we go on a field trip to the pumpkin patch. Today it is raining…. This means tomorrow we should be having a very muddy field trip. I will have 17 children and their families in a muddy pumpkin patch, oh joy! Oh and the temperatures have finally decided to drop into fall temperatures (Saturday we didn’t get out of the 40s!) My class is meeting at 10:30 it is forecast to be 39F at 10am and 42F by 11am. Cold and muddy. I think I’m pulling out my warm boots.

I hope life is treating you well in your little corner of the world.

 

 

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family · life · through my camera lens

Last weekend in Sept.

Every once in a while you just need to have a weekend to do things. This was one of those weekends. Saturday we went kayaking for the second time. All of us did a much better job this time and we were able to go further than the last time. The guide this time said that Colby needs a narrower kayak next time. They ended up having to give him a tow back to the spillway. They gave him a turn to try the other kayak at the end and it was so much easier for him. We are planning to try a longer trip the next time we go. LLBean has a 3 hr fall foliage kayak tour. We talked about doing it this time, but it wouldn’t have been worth it since the trees haven’t even really started to change. Maybe in about 2 weeks we can try?

Today we headed to Sorgel’s for their fall festival. We started by picking apples. We ended up picking a whole peck of apples.

We then went over and picked pumpkins. We told the boys they had to be able to carry their pumpkin down to the car. Blake kept picking ones that were way to big for him to carry on his own. Even the one he ended up picking was a bit too heavy for him.

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After bringing everything to the truck, we went and watched them press cider. We did this last year too, but it was fun to watch again. Plus this year they had samples of cider and we were able to go into the room where they pasteurize and bottle the cider. The guy who was running the press said they now have to press cider all year long to have enough for the stores and for the companies who purchase it to make hard apple cider.

While we were on the tour, the apple cider dude told us that they filmed an episode of Daniel Tiger’s neighborhood in the cider press. Here is the guy we spoke with as well as the press and areas we visited. http://pbskids.org/video/daniel-tigers-neighborhood/2365854390

It was a great weekend and a lot of fall fun. I’m not ready for Monday, so I’ll enjoy a bit more of this last day of Sept! See you in October09_30_bc_03

 

life

Beach Body Update

So, Richard and I have be working out using Beach Body’s Liift4 for over 7 weeks. I have lost almost 10lb already. We are both starting to see changes in our bodies and are feeling a lot stronger.

The way the Liift4 program works is you work out 4 days a week for 30-40 min a day. It is a combination of weight lifting and HIIT. The first 5 weeks you do chest and triceps (day 1), back and biceps (day 2), shoulders (day 3) and legs (day 4). They change between circuit training (quad sets and just weights),  50/50 all lift in the beginning all HIIT in the end, intervals (2 weight lifting exercises and 1 HIIT in each set). Oh and every other leg day was just HIIT, my least favorite day. Then at the end of each day you do 2/3 core exercises.

Each week you switch the order of the exercises. This forces your body to adapt to the changes. I really enjoyed the interval and circuit days. I recognize the need for the HIIT components. I realize that getting that cardio bursts help with the weight loss. I just prefer lifting, I love seeing myself choose heavier weights. I love it when I’m lifting a weight heavier than the ladies who are demoing on the taping.

The last two weeks the whole routine gets changed around. These are “Shred” weeks. Day 1 is chest and back circuit, day 2 is legs 50/50, day 3 is shoulders and arms circuit, and day 4 is total body HIIT.

I hope that as we continue this program we continue to see definition to our muscles. I want to see my pants get looser, isn’t that the goal of most females who workout? I know I”m getting strong. I’m not craving foods. I’m not stress eating. I drink the shakology every day for breakfast. I do not follow the rest of the meal play, but I do watch what I eat. The program allows for one cheat day. I allow myself one cheat meal. I use this on the weekends.

 

family · life

What is next to check off the list?

Ahhh the never ending feeling of what next. I spent time today revising my lesson plans for next week. I realize I was crazy to do so many weeks ahead of time. I tried to get the whole month of Sept done, but then when you get to the end you realize, what was I thinking?

I’ve had to tweak the schedule of my classroom and move things around to make it work for all my students. I am still working on what things do I do twice to make sure most of my students get the activity and which ones do I say… oh well you missed because it wasn’t your day at school.

The same feels for life at home. I am trying to figure out a schedule to get things done. I want to get most of the cleaning and shopping done during the week, but then that leaves me little time for me. I had a whole year of being home and there are times already where I miss those quiet moments that I had during that year. I feel like I’m either trying to cram in things for work or cleaning or doing some other things that needs to get done before the boys get home. Then it is homework, dinner and evening activities.

I need to remember to carve out those “me” moments in life. The fact that Richard and I get up at 5:30am and workout helps. I start the day doing something healthy for me, but then life gets busy to get everyone off to school and work. There is a bit of time in the mornings before I leave, but often times I find this filled with bits of this and that. I need down time. I realize that I have only been teaching officially for 10 days and things will smooth out. I realize that I know what I need and I just need to make it work. But for now, I’ll keep the feeling of what is next? And then check it off the list!

life

September 11th

Yesterday I mentioned that I would share info about my school life today. I am not avoiding it, but felt that this post was more important.

Image result for september 11

Every generation has a date or two that you just understand that this is a day I will always remember. For me, September 11th is one of these dates. I was at work. Working as a teacher I didn’t have access to tv or internet while the day was going on. This meant I was in the dark about life outside my classroom.

I dropped my students off in the cafeteria for lunch and still was not clued in that this day was anything different than the other days before.

I walked into the room where we had lunch. It wasn’t a true break room, but more a walled off area inside a classroom building. When I walked in the first thing I noticed was that the tv screen was not tuned into the school channel, providing the clock that everyone in the school followed for the daily schedule. There was a tv station on. It took me a good few minutes to process what I was seeing.

Attacked? What do you mean? Why were planes flying into buildings? What is going on. I had entered the room around 10:45 by this time all the planes had crashed. They were just getting out word about the Pennsylvania crash and all that entailed and then the towers began to collapse.

I can remember standing there as my fellow kindergarten teacher arrived. I can remember thinking…. what’s next? There was fear. There was a need to figure out what we could do? Do we go on with the day as planned? Will the school go on lock down? Will the parents tell their children what was happening?

Image result for mr rogers hero quote

We decided as a grade not to tell the children what was going on at that time. It would have to be addressed tomorrow. We would need to be ready to squelch fears. We knew some parents would say nothing while others would tell too much. We knew that some families would show fear and others show strength. We needed to be calm. We needed to be honest. We needed to talk about the heroes. We needed to talk about standing united. We needed to show the children the even in times of great tragedy there is great strength.

Each year as time passes that clear details of that day get a bit fuzzier. But, that movement in time when I walked in and saw the tv on and the buildings on fire will never change. I still try to show children that whenever things go wrong we need to look for the heroes. Look for the people running towards danger instead of those running  away. Say thank you to those who help us stay safe.

So today, I had my class dress in red, white and blue. We learned to say the Pledge of Allegiance. We talked about today being a day to be “Proud to be an American”. While I do not teach my students about the true meaning behind 9/11, I will always have them honor the date.

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life

Rainy days and Mondays

Today was much better at work. I felt like I had a better groove going on. I was concerned that the kids would all be off because of the rain this weekend and today. They came in and were ready to work.

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This weekend we had SO MUCH RAIN. It didn’t stop until today. We have water intrusion in our basement. Colby came upstairs yesterday and asked if having water in the carpet was an issue. Ummm yes! And the worst it was right near our electrical panel.  UGH! Richard ended up staying home from work today in hopes of getting it fixed, but at this time we are still waiting for the people come back.

Life is always interesting. And you never know what will happen.

Stay tuned tomorrow for some school info. I think I’ll share with you the poetry we are doing each week as well as some of the projects we are doing that week.

 

life

September

It’s September! It doesn’t feel like September when I step outside the door. It feels like August. This year has gone by so fast and in some ways I’m not ready for it to move at the rate. Hard to believe that in a few short months we will be talking about the holidays and the end of the year.

Today was my last day in my classroom without students. Tomorrow my students and their parents come in to see the classroom and meet me.  I  feel very comfortable working with the aide I have in my class this year. I feel like we will work well together. I’m excited to see the process of this school year going forward.

I know life is busy for everyone. I’m just ready to get into my new routine. I’m ready to be back to blogging. I’m ready to share my new pieces of my life with you. I just have to figure out how much and what pieces.

family · life

Cleaning schedule

It’s Tuesday! I love long weekends, but I also know that it means that I now have 5 days of work to fit into 4 days. I slacked on housework last week BIG time. I did get a few things done, but I need to work on creating a new schedule so that everything gets done on a regular basis. This is my idea for now:

  • Monday- floors- vac, sweep, mop
  • Tuesday- bathrooms
  • Wednesdays- groceries
  • Thursdays- sweep, iron
  • Fridays- nothing or make up items missed

I figure laundry will happen as needed. I typically dust every other week or so. I try to clean the kitchen nightly. We will see how this works out.

Do you have a weekly cleaning schedule? What have you found works for you, and your family??

 

life

Ready for the new school year?

It’s hard to believe that the summer is almost over. There are often times when I wish the boys went to school all year long. They do so much better when they have a routine. Then there are days when I am so happy that they have summer break. I love the slower moments of life.

Today the boys got up, had breakfast and then went downstairs. They are playing with hot wheels cars. They take control of the fire stick, but that is fine. They don’t always play well together, but when they do it is nice. I enjoy the easy relationship they have together. They certainly are best of friends and worst of enemies. They have a natural relationship together. They are both strong willed and that shows in ugly ways at times, but I wouldn’t change in either of the boys.

We have kept up some routines, schedules and expectations over the summer, but also loosened up some of them too. I like that as they get older they have more independent times. We are getting to the phase in their lives where they balance is shifting. They need to make more and more decisions on their own. They need to be more responsible for their choices, actions and forward movements in life.

So many times it seems that parents want to keep their children younger. They want to shelter the children. They want to stay in control of the choices and decisions that are made. That is not the way that Richard and I parent. We want the boys to have a firm grasp on reality. They need to understand choices and consequences now before those wrong choices could land them in more trouble than an apology can fix.

So am I ready for summer to be over? Yes and No. Am I ready for the boys to grow up? Yes. I love seeing the changes in the boys. I am excited to see what the next change will be. I’m excited to see the growth and development in all aspects of life. Going forward into the next grade of school is a huge step in the development process… so bring on 6th and 5th grades. I’m ready to see the changes it with bring in their personalities, development and all around self. (Not that I’m ready to start the whole get up and function in the mornings)

life · through my camera lens

Different way of looking at things

There are so many things in life that could frustrate and upset you. You could feel like things will never workout the way you expect them to. You could feel like the cosmos are going against you.

I look at my backyard and realize that I should be frustrated. The clover has taken over. Now granted I know that I haven’t done a ton to improve the quality of the yard. I can’t get mad at the yard when I don’t put the effort into making it look the way I wish it looked. I get it!

But, then I look again! Now I see that the clover has attracted butterflies, bumblebees and bunnies (sorry I didn’t get a picture of Easter or Peter that’s what we call the rabbits who visit out yard). So it isn’t all bad.

Some times what you have to do is look at life from a different angle. You have to stop and reflect on the positives. Now I’m not saying that I’ll never work on getting rid of the weeds in my backyard. Just as I need to work on working out to improve my health/physical shape. Just like I need to keep working on my relationship with the boys and with Richard, all things take work, but doesn’t mean that they are bad. It just means that sometimes you have to look at it from a different angle to see the good parts.

Take the time to realize that even negative moments help you grow as a person. Take the time to stop and breathe and realize that there isn’t totally bad, just as there isn’t total good.  Look for the butterflies and bees…. they flit in fast and are fleeting, but they are there.