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The Final Voyage

8 Jun

Andddd I’m back.

As per usual it’s been too long. Par for the course, really.

First of all, my mom is doing very well (all things considered). She’s undergone several rounds of chemo and her most recent blood work indicates that the cancer is responding to the chemo–which is beyond excellent.  Despite the exhaustion and consistent discomfort, she’s wearing her brave face and tackling life everyday with optimism and enthusiasm. True Sue style, really.

In other news, I got a job.  Like, a full-time teaching job which is obviously unbelievably amazing.  I am so excited for next school year!  Upon receiving the news I bought a new car, trading in my life-long ride… a 1999 VW Jetta…

… and while I loved my little red Jetta, it was time for an upgrade.  Jetta was bucking like a broncho as a result of a slipping 135,000+ mile transmission; she couldn’t play the radio at the same time the air conditioner was running and if the air conditioner was running, you might have thought that American Airlines was landing a plane in the lane next to you.  It was time.  On her final voyage, the Jetta sputtered and spat, she put quite the fight… but (begrudgingly) she made it to the dealership, where I kissed her good-bye and thanked her for all the good times and being there through all of the bad. I learned how to drive in that car, I drove off to college in that car, she carried me home when I learned that my mom had cancer. The Jetta and I had quite a bit of history together, but she and I both knew it was time to bid farewell.

And perhaps to show my loyalty, I purchased a brand new Jetta.  One with less than 100 miles on her, leather interior, heated seats, air conditioning, a moon roof, Sirius radio (that plays even when the air is on), a full navigational system, Bluetooth, and basically thinks for me…

I actually just took my first road trip in the new car last weekend to visit my doctor-to-be boyfriend.  Not only did I get to spend some quality time with my boyfriend, but also my lovely new car.

Corey is a few weeks into his graduate work in Physical Therapy at YSU. Unfortunately for me (and his brothers/parents) we are no longer viewed as people but rather study-worthy specimen.  Last week his class was learning about the shoulder and he volunteered me to be his shoulder study partner. Lucky girl, I know.  He cranked the crap out of my shoulder, named all the ligaments, bones and muscles and then told me I have a weak right shoulder most likely as a result of pitching too much in my growth spurt years. How romantic.

Other than that, all is well here at the homestead. We are all officially on summer vacay and planning a family trip to Boston sometime during the summer months. Now if you will excuse me, I have to go clean up the spoon I left on the counter before my father has an  aneurism about making messes.  Oh summer…


Picture Post

15 Apr

As promised, here are several pictures of the classroom… I had so much fun decorating it with my mom. And of course, it is pretty in pink.

                                                                                           Desk view 🙂 

Side view of desk

 This table is a life saver. Anytime a student is absent I file their work into the folders you see on the right of the table.  After pulling their work, the students have to sign the notebook in the middle of the table so that I know who has picked up their work.  From there, the students become responsible for the missing work.  If they have questions then they simply just ask! It works wonderfully.

Advisory Bulletin Board/Books

Writing Domain

Welcome Wall! 

Classroom Utensils~glue, colored pencils, scissors, rules,  high lighters

Homework Boards!

You can’t really tell from this picture, but this bulletin board is covered in black sequins material.  On this board I post anything that is  happening in school, policies, sports schedules and of course, the lunch menu.

Hope you enjoyed the tour!

Exciting News!

6 Apr

I suppose leaving you in suspense for three weeks is long enough.  You know me and my blogging habits… they are as random as the spring weather. Or a box of chocolates… you just never know what you’re gonna get.

Whatever, I will just get on with it.

I got a job!

Well… kind of!? I got a long-term substitute position!  In my content area!   Through the end of the school year! Even better yet, there is a possible full-time opening for the fall!

What’s more important, and perhaps the best part, is that I have literally been a teacher-in-training since I was able to speakSeriously.  Being the oldest (and bossiest) child in the batch, I always hosted hours upon hours of “class” in my basement.  Teddy bears and brothers all lined up, I had activities planned out and homework slated for every night of the week.  At one point I even convinced my dad to attach a small chalkboard to the basement wall where I would have my brothers practice writing cursive and I would stand waving the eraser at them, telling them, “practice makes perfect, boys!”

Once my brothers got older (and bigger) I had to teach to my Barbie dolls who were not nearly as interactive, despite my overactive imagination. But I still had a blast.  I loved to teach, it was just in my blood–quite literally I suppose; both parents being teachers and all. I think I was one of the few five-year olds who counted down until the first day of school, anxiously awaiting all of the cool new things I’d be learning.  From a young age I would watch my teachers… I always knew I wanted to be the teacher one day.

So when this opportunity to be a long-term sub came along, I could hardly sleep.  From the minute I got the key to the classroom I was already brainstorming all of the things I wanted to accomplish in the final few weeks of the school year.  And of course, being the girly girl I am, I did spend quite a bit of time decorating the room too (I’ll post pictures in a separate post soon). Without the help of my mom the classroom would not have come out as awesome as it did. It is not only functional but now it is a place that I love to be and I think the students do too.  It is inviting and sets the tone for learning.

The past few weeks have been nothing short of awesome.  I feel like I am living out my life-long dream. Except instead of brothers and Barbies, I have real students.  Which by the way, the students are great.  I love Junior High students.  They are goofy, they are free-spirited and they are honest.  What a wonderful combination. I’ve said it before and I will say it again–Junior High kids are the perfect in-between.  They have the ability to have complex thoughts and understand difficult material but they are still just silly, fun-loving kids. I absolutely could not be having a better time.

I do realize what an opportunity this is too. Because this long-term substitute position is just that– an opportunity. I think that is why most days I have to pinch myself upon walking into the classroom.  In an economy full of lay offs, I have been blessed with a chance to be a part of something bigger and better than myself–a child’s education. I get to go into a job everyday that I love and believe in, whole heartedly,  And that? That rocks.

Paired with just flat-out loving what I am doing, I have also been welcomed with open arms by the other teachers and staff members.  Everyone has been more than willing to answer any and all of my questions such as, “Why did the copy machine just shut off? Uh oh… um, is this thing broken?” or “What do we do for a Tornado Drill?” Thank goodness for helpful people.  On either side of the classroom I have teachers with years of experience  who always know what to do.  Life is so much better when there are supportive people around you, ya know!?

I literally couldn’t complain if I tried.  I am (albeit temporarily)a part of a great school district, surrounded by a supportive and helpful staff, and I get to interact with good kids daily.  Talk about exciting news!