An Unexpected Lesson of Immanuel

On Friday morning, while in the middle of teaching, I looked down at my email and saw a message from Chris.  It said, “I hope you’re having a good morning!  I’m kind of having a rough one.”  He went on to… well, to wallow a little bit.  And Chris never wallows, so I knew he must really be down.  Basically, Chris has been getting the short end of the stick for about a month now – both at work and at home.  We were weeks away from buying him a…

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Prepare Yourselves for BIG CHANGES.

Big changes are happening right now in my life, guys.  BIG.  HUGE.  So big, in fact, that I haven’t shared them with you because I wasn’t quite sure how it would all work out.  But I think I’m ready to write about it. I’m switching to a digital calendar. I know!  Insane, right?!  You all know how much I loves me my Erin Condren planner.  I have used one for three years now, and I am in love.  Then, last year, some of the teachers on my hallway started getting…

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Classroom Tour 2016-2017

Imaginary friends, how I have missed you so!  I have been swept up in the back to school craze of pre-planning.  By the end of the day, my brain is shot, my feet are tired, and I can barely form sentences.  I am not used to being productive OR friendly for this long!  Summer has gotten me out of social shape!  But I have gotten myself to a great spot and I am getting pumped about this coming school year. I thought I’d share a little tour of my classroom…

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The Master’s Plan

I have very few regrets in my life.  Very, very few.  I believe that mistakes and missed opportunities in our pasts help shape and guide us into our futures.  Regrets are just part of the plan.  But my one regret for the past ten years has been my Masters degree. My big plan in life was to go to law school.  Chris and I had planned that when we graduated from undergrad and were married, we would move to wherever I was accepted to law school.  And then, about four…

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A Family Hero

In my 8th grade language arts classes a few years ago, we used to write essays on the topic, “What defines a hero?”  Students spent all quarter studying all different types of heroes, and from those various texts, they had to come up with their own definition of heroism.  Year after year, we almost always came to the conclusion that a hero is someone who puts others before themselves.  This might mean someone in a position to physically save lives, like a police officer or a doctor.  Or it might…

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Why We Cancelled Our Family Vacation

I’m supposed to be camping in the mountains right now.  Did I tell you about that?  Back in March, Chris and I decided that it would be super fun to take the family camping just outside of Gatlinburg the first week of summer vacation.  For several weeks, I pinned every Pinterest pin possible (say that five times fast) about what to do with kids in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge.  I even came up with a little schedule for our vacation. And then May and June happened. I don’t know about you,…

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Purging My Schedule

The other day at lunch, I ran up to the grocery store near my school to pick up a few things for an ice cream party I was throwing some of my students.  At the grocery store, I ran into a teacher that I used to teach with.  She has kids my own kids’ ages, and she quit teaching last year to stay home with them for a while.  I asked her how she was doing and what she was getting herself into these days. “Nothing,” she said.  “I gave…

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The Magic of Teaching

This past Friday was our school’s 8th grade Gradventure to Universal Studios.  Did you have a class trip when you were in 8th grade?  Yeah, I didn’t either.  These kids don’t know how good they have it.  Why, in my day, we carried pagers and walked to school both ways uphill in the blazing Florida heat. But today, kids get to leave school on a big fancy tour bus and go play at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure from 3:00 in the afternoon until 1:00 in the morning. Which…

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Talking to Middle Schoolers

Here’s what I love about middle schoolers.  They, like me, don’t like small talk.  Not at all.  So sometimes, when adults try to talk to them about school or sports or something generic, middle school students just won’t participate in the conversation.  And, let’s face it.  Most adults would probably prefer not to participate in small talk, either.  It’s just that we are mature enough to know we have to suffer through it sometimes.  But middle school kids are like, “That’s stupid.  I’m not going to talk about that.”  And…

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My Blooming Husband

Last week, Chris was in tech rehearsals almost every night, which means he didn’t get home until about 11:00.  And I was fighting a cold, so I was going to bed when the kids did around 8:00 every night.  Chris and I basically saw each other over breakfast in the mornings, and that was about it. (Have I mentioned how much I hate tech weeks?) On Thursday night, I was finally feeling a little better, so I stayed up late to see him when he got home.  We sat in the…

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