Around Here Week 8: 02/16-22

Saturday, February 29, 2020

A glimpse into what it is like to live in our home just this moment.

photo cred: Ms. Kayla

photo cred: Ms. Kayla


Intentional Outdoor Hours:  9+ hours (of 1000)
The kids and I took the dogs for a walk and a tree climb one evening and then met Dad on the driveway where he had the truck. Momo (our runt chicken) wandered down to meet us and the kids scooped her up for a ride back up to the house on the back of the truck - I was cracking up! Momo - don't you know you are an easy meal for a fox down there on your own you brave chick! I took a quick few laps around the track at school once this week during lunch because I just needed some fresh air and some movement, and then we took a great, much needed family and pups walk along the Jim Mayer trial on Saturday afternoon. The kids were reluctant to get dressed at first, but the minute we got out on the trail, they all found sticks and skipped and walked along stopping to check out ice patches in the half melted puddles. They even billy goat climbed up the waterfall creek.

Reading and finishing Scythe by Neal Shusterman and immediately moving on to Thunderhead (the second book of the series).

Smiling that our kids make special little sibling memories like having a 'campout' in Gemma's bottom bunk with blankets all hung up around it so it was like a fort lit but by twinkle lights on the night before an in-service school day. The three big ones squeezed in together while Rustman was like, 'I'm sleeping comfortably by myself in my own bed thank you very much' (very Rusty of him).

Grateful for the friendship Violet has with her best friend, Grady. They got to spend the day at preschool together on Monday (since he's a teacher's kid too and needed childcare for the in-service) and he brought her a Violet cloth flower for Valentines day.

Having dinner with the original Adams crew (my sisters, my parents, and I) to talk about future plans and dreams. We ate and chatted at Franklin Street Bar and Grill and it was so nice to catch up and spend the evening with the OG crew.

Knocking out appointments this week. Baby brother and I had another ultrasound and check up this week. low-lying placenta still, but it's okayish. Now little fella has done so many somersaults that the umbilical cord is up over his shoulder and in the way of the exit (Good grief, little man!) Other than that - all is perfectly fine and another ultrasound is on the books to see how it's looking in another two weeks. Grey had a great check up at the dentist!

Self-caring after my baby appointment on Tuesday since I had about 2 hours to burn before my half day was up for school. So I enjoyed my favorite breakfast (everything bagel with veggie cream cheese and a slice of tomato with a cup of chai tea latte) at Panera and then went and got a much needed pedicure. My toe's and accompanying chipping nail polish has been annoying me for weeks now, but who has the time (or the physical ability at this point - HAH) to do something about it. I was so so grateful to get them done (I chose a turquoise color for our babe).

Thinking the Rustman is growing because he is as hungry as a horse and asking for food non stop. He woke up at 1:30a this week, came into our bedroom to say, "Momma, I want someping to eat. How about toast wit peanut butter and jewee?"

Singing non-stop the entire soundtrack to Hairspray because that is all that Gemma and Violet ask their bedroom Alexa to play non-stop on repeat every day. #sendearplugs

Excited to receive a thoughtful gift from a student - my very own piece of Hagaromo chalk! I showed them the Great Big Story video a few weeks ago and my student, Tabby, ordered some of her own and then gifted me with a piece. I'm obsessed.

Mini celebrating Gemma's birthday with dinner and cake at our house, shared with her birthday neighbor Pappy (they have consecutive birthdays!) I also surprised her with a sleepover that night with her best friend Sophie. We've agreed to have a big party in the summer so we can swim and our new baby bro can be there too! Gem also got to share school lunch on her actual birthday with her family and I was so thankful that Chum, Aunt Uch and Uncle Kevin were there for her. Grey even asked to leave class a little early so he could stop by because Gem had asked him that morning on the bus! And she got a special evening date with her Godmomma Aunt Kitty to get a mani/pedi and Aunt Kitty did a diy hair tip dying for her. Luckiest birthday girl!

Asking Miss Hannah and Uncle Kesin to be our new baby brother's Godparents. They said Yes! We are so grateful to have them in all our kids' lives and that is one lucky little baby boy to get these two.

College'ing  with a 3 page paper due on Sunday that Brandon had me cracking up with his commentary. After I was reading it aloud to proofread and he said, "Do you think that maybe your professor reads your paper and says, 'geez, sorry I asked." LOL, but seriously - not much gets me fired up like education, so yeah #sorrynotsorry. I also had some articles to read to prep for next weeks' assignment.

Winter sporting with four basketball games and two practices this week. Grey's CT team played in the playoffs on Saturday and won both games taking them to the championship on Sunday. We had a long chat about how it will be great to win, but also - dude, it's a game and whether you win or lose -you have homework and chores to do and school on relax. Their team has come such a long way from last year (they only won 1 game last year!), and Grey loves so much playing with his best friends (all of the guys also play football and baseball together too - so there's a lot of love and trust there).

Spring sporting with one indoor baseball practice this week for Grey and B. There are some decisions that need to be made about Grey this year and what division he is playing in and it annoys and frustrates me. He's moved up early every year in baseball so far and we knew eventually he'd get an extra year somewhere - we thought this was going to be the year that he gets to stay and play with kids his own age. Alas, it does not appear that is going to be the case and as much as my momma bear instincts are bubbling under the surface, I have to be ready to support whatever decision is made.

Teaching only 4 days this week because we had an ACT 80 day on Monday. I loved having time in my classroom to get organized and prepared with no students. I took a half day on Tuesday because of my baby doc appointment - so really I only had a three and a half day week! We had our monthly teacher potluck on Thursday too- brunch themed! Spanish 1 made some predictions about their upcoming novel, took a vocab quiz, and then read Chapter 1 of Brandon Brown Quiere un Perro. Sp2 read chapters 1-2 of their novel, Esperanza, and I pulled out Pear Deck to help support them as they trudge through the plot. Sp2 Honors finished Esperanza and took their final quiz. Sp3/4 Honors finished their past tense reviews of the movie McFarland and then did small group presentations to practice speaking.

Making korean ground turkey and green beans over rice, ham & cheese texas toast sandwiches, kielbasa and sauerkraut, and brocolli & rice soup. For Gemma's birthday lunch, I woke up early and threw together some monkey bread to sing before school and then we ordered in pizza for her mini birthday dinner at our house on Friday night. I also tried my hand for the first time at making ice cream cake - we had fruity pebble ice cream cake at her and Pappy's mini party since Gem loves cereal more than any other food. It turned out delicious and actually wasn't too hard to make! I made double chocolate pumpkin muffins for the monthly teacher potluck lunch I organize too.

Around Here Week 7: 02/09-15

Sunday, February 23, 2020

A glimpse into what it is like to live in our home just this minute.

photo taken at 2:40am - thanks pregnancy insomnia

Intentional Outdoor Hours: 6+ hours (of 1000)
I didn't commit any intentional hours outside this week which was a bummer, so still holding strong a little more than 6 hours this year so far. The kids (as always) are beating me and donned their winter hats and gloves to jump on the trampoline and go shed hunting behind the house. They come in frozen like Popsicles, but they couldn't care less. Saturday morning was so dry and everything stilled outside frozen with the sun coming up - gah, so beautiful.

Reading Scythe by Neil Shusterman. I love it and now I fear as soon as I'm done with it, I'm going to have to read book 2 in the series...even though my Books&Brews book club choice awaits me!

Thankful for amazon prime because I remembered to order kids' valentine party supplies (valentine cards, party plates & napkins) on Friday so that they'd be here on time.

Having crazy postpartum nightmares that are obviously my worries about getting things ready at school and for college before the babe arrives manifesting themselves. I dreamt this week that our newborn was here (no delivery in the dream, he was just here already) and I was still teaching at school. He fell asleep, so I just put him in a box on my desk and went on with the school day. Then I got so distracted and busy that I LEFT HIM THERE and went home. I mean. Good Grief. I didn't realize until I got home and rushed back to school for him and he was fussing and hungry and I rationlized that the night maintenance guy probably held him and shushed him for a little while - so it's fine. everything is fine.

Praying for a dear friend who awaits medical news for someone she loves. It also gave me a chance to talk to Grey and Gem about being there for friends who are facing scary news. We talked about how you can let them know that you are there for them if they want to talk - but people don't always want to talk about it because it makes them worried. Just letting them know that you are there if/when they are ready to enough.

Cheering on my student basketball players at their Westpac game. Unfortunately they didn't end up winning, but I was glad to catch a few minutes of our dudes between checking on the kids who I parked in my classroom to watch Ferdinand during the game because the gym was packed to the brim and they were very much over another basketball game that night after watching their brother's. #teacherskidperks

Considering options that will make sense for childcare as we move into the next part of the year. After a lot of budget looks and talking, it makes sense for the little ones to stay home with me and the baby for the last two months of the school year. Would it be a daydream to just be home with the baby and sleep when the baby sleeps and get things done interrupted? of course, but losing two months of pay while out on leave and the hospital bills we will be contending with - it just does not make financial sense (or reality-hah!) I'm excited that Vi and Rust will get an extended 'summer vacay' before Violet goes to Kindergarten this fall (!!) and I know they will be helpful too and keep me company in those rotten 8 weeks. All is well and I'm glad that the decision is made and we can move on with the next preparation for new baby bro.

Lunch dating with my handsome hubs during 9th period. He surprised me with hibachi take out from Yamato and some California rolls for me to celebrate Love Day.

Stating for the record that Valentines day school parties are my least favorite school holiday. The valentines for every classmate, the amount of candy they bring home, the pile of tiny pieces of paper that literally go from backpack to garbage upon arrival home. We have that times four...just no thank you.

Taking a personal/flex day on Friday because I needed to gift myself a little Valentines day of rest. It was my first student day that I missed this school year! (I've scheduled all my ob appts for Act 80 days) and it felt so nice to be at home with no one else.

Sorting all the baby clothes we had in the attic and all those that we were gifted (thank you!) into a pile of things that need washed & folded and that can be donated to the local women's shelter. My momma generously offered to wash all the clothes (!) and so I put all the newborn and 0-3month clothes in a huge tote for the little man while the rest of the clothes got packed away to donate (after I double checked with the kind families who handed them down to us).

Smiling about how much the girls love getting a rose from their Dad on Valentines day. They totally expect now but that doesn't make their delight any less.

College'ing with a 2-3 page debate response with personal reflection paper about Inclusion. I did my check ins and had another classroom observation (thanks again Renee!) to make sure that I'm squared away before maternity leave. Each week (since the beginning of the year) I also have to do a weekly reflection about my own classroom practice - so onward and upward.

Winter sporting with five basketball games which included a championship win for Grey's Legion team! His Sportsman's team lost in the playoffs - and so both of those teams' seasons are done. We are down to two teams now for Grey and we just had one practice. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Teaching the merengue in Spanish 1 as we learned about Carrie, la perrita bailarina and got our vocab words for their upcoming novel Brandon Brown Quiere un Perro. Spanish 2 finished their pre-novel activities for Esperanza including the documentary Which Way Home. Spanish 2 Honors created storyboards to summarize chapter 7 of Esperanza and then did small group presentations to present them in Spanish. They were so nervous, but they did awesome and I was so proud of their courage to put themselves out there (with no notes!) and go for it in Spanish. Spanish 3/4 Honors learned about the real Coach White and the McFarland track team before we started the movie McFarland, USA. Next week they'll have a chance to use their past tense skills for a movie review project.

Making chicken and gravy over mashed potatoes, frozen pizza, crescent rolled 'lil smokies and mac and cheese, air fryer chicken and french fries, and a fridge clean out leftover extravaganza. Since I called off, I made a big Valentine breakfast before school on Friday that included heart shaped french toast, bacon, and heart shaped strawberries. Grey made us egg sausage casserole for breakfast on Saturday and decided that it's too easy for him now and he's ready to move onto something more challenging for a food specialty (hah!)

Around Here Week 6: 02/02-08

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

A glimpse into what it is like to live in our home just this moment.

Intentional Outdoor Hours:  6+ hours (of 1000)
Snagging a little over an hour this week on Monday when the weather was decent and I got some reading done outside while the kids rode bikes on the patio. B and Violet took the dogs for a walk (much needed in this muddy fake winter - Groundhog says Spring is coming early this year!) and we were all happy to get some fresh air. The kids have been climbing a tree in the 'goat pasture' as we refer to it and the way they get up is so funny to me. They shimmy/climb up a bowed branch that is low hanging instead of climbing up the trunk part!

Reading Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson and jumping into our next Project Lit book Scythe by Neil Shusterman because I needed a little break from the heaviness of Just Mercy (so good, but need to take breathers before filling up with rage, confusion, and frustration after every chapter). I am really loving Scythe and how creative the plot is. We have had so many great books for Project Lit, I feel so grateful to be able to share them with our students. I was pretty bummed we didn't have our book club at school on Friday because of the snow (delayed buses/early out). But looking forward to chatting with students about With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo next week!

Starting a family puzzle as one of my February 100 small things items. We got one that reminded us a lot of camping and summer at the Que to get us all out of these cranky winter blues. Problem is, we have an obsession now and find ourselves engrossed in trying to find the missing pieces instead of doing things that actually need to get done like chores and grading (okay, fine I'm talking mainly about me).

Checking in on the baby bump as we've moved to bi-weekly appointments at this point. All seems well and I have another ultrasound scheduled in two weeks to make sure my placenta is getting out of the way and he's growing in there. 30 weeks now which feels like barely any time left but also forever left. The heartburn is still going strong and by the evening my lower back is shot. Lots of little kicks and hiccups, so we're just hanging out together for a few more weeks until I can kiss that sweet little face!

Feeling grateful for great teachers and support staff at my kids' school. We had a follow up meeting for Gemmi to check on how things are progressing (they are! slowly, but they are!) Very glad that they are there with these teachers who love them so and want them to be successful.

Enjoying one day of fake winter...which appears is all we are getting this season! The big kids had school cancelled on Friday while I braved the snowy/slush roads to get to school for regular time. But by lunch, it wasn't getting any better and our school called an early out. Bonus of snow days at school means no activities in the evenings either - so we all hunkered down for the night and enjoyed doing nada.

College'ing with a classroom observation this week (thank you Renee!) and turning in a Personal Reflection paper on my thoughts on Inclusion for Special Education. I also have to 'check in' to my course twice a week and I'm brainstorming about my research paper but haven't actually put fingers to keyboard yet...

Visiting with friends on Saturday. We got to spend the day with Uncle Jonny and Tessa which made us all so happy (although we also miss you Nin and Baby Tristan!) Gemma had her friend Ava visit for the day while Violet got to hang out with Abba and Chum and watch our family friend Taylor in her senior night basketball game at St. Vincent college (we are proud of you Tay!)

Winter sporting with three basketball practices and four basketball games. We are so close to the end of the season for two of his teams (#silentYAY) Grey is still loving it and it really keeps him motivated to stay on top of school work and chores. He definitely does better when he has a schedule that includes sports.

Teaching about the controversy that surrounds bullfighting, and doing some writing practice using the 'hamburguesa' method, and then starting the movie Ferdinand to end the kind of heavy bullfighting unit. Spanish 2 watched Living on $1 and did some research on Guatemala and got their new vocab words. Spanish 2 Honors continues slowly through their novel Esperanza (chaps4-6) and created family trees. Spanish 3/4 Honors finished learning about the Imperfecto past tense and then watched one of my favorite animated shorts: Cuerdas to do a mini written review on it with a partner in the past tense.

Making breakfast breads on Sunday morning (cranberry and blueberry) - the baby brother was so hungry for it! We went full football food for the Superbowl with air fryer wings and homemade sauces from Chef Dad. We had buff chicken dip and cocktail shrimp too! Throughout the week we had pizzadillas, breakfast for dinner (cheesy potato, egg, and ham bowls!), shredded chicken over noodles, fish sticks & pierogies, and taco nachos. We got to eat out at Fox's with Abba, Chum, Kitty, and Uch too for pizza and wings before Grey's game! (thank you!!)