Monday, April 25, 2011

Biscuit's graduation!

When I first got Biscuit, I knew he would need some sort of training. Since I've helped my mom a bunch with her dogs, I consider myself pretty well informed but some more information never hurt. Plus, I wanted Biscuit to meet and socialize with other dogs. So I signed up for a dog training class at PetSmart.

It was a pretty interesting class, mostly because it was me and Biscuit and some old hippy dude named Chuck and his dog Roscoe. But it did help Biscuit become more socialized. I want to take the class again (you can re-take it for free) but won't be able to this summer with my surgery. Maybe we'll try again in the fall to see if Biscuit can learn any more tricks. Right now he can "sit" and "wait" but that's about it.

But here is a picture from his "graduation" from dog school:
Isn't he so cute? I love how he's smiling for the camera. Happy Graduation Biscuit!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

To Hunt or Not to Hunt?

This year I asked myself, "should I do an Easter egg hunt for my kids or not?" Last year all the K teachers talked and planned one together. I should say before I get too far that I don't really agree with doing an Easter egg hunt at school, especially since I teach at a public school. My thought is that if we don't celebrate all religious holidays, then we shouldn't celebrate/discuss any. But last year I agreed to it.

So this year I wasn't planning on doing an egg hunt. We have been very busy implementing new initiatives and a new magnet concept, not to mention that I'm leaving 3 weeks early so I have only 12 more days left of school. But the Lifeskills teacher asked if my class wanted to join hers in an egg hunt. She had arranged everything so all we had to do was show up. Okay, I said. We'll do it.

I am so glad we did! It was seriously the most precious thing EVER! The Lifeskills (special ed) kids from a local high school had stuffed so many eggs and came over and hid them. They helped my kids hunt for eggs and they kids, both elementary and high school, were so cute about the whole thing. I was worried my kids would be competitive, but they did great! They were even sharing and swapping eggs with each other, and then they all wanted to give me an egg. It was so sweet. We capped the whole thing off with some super cute cupcakes the HS kids had made.

It was so sweet. It went against everything I believe about celebrating religious events in public schools, but I am glad we did it. Now I'll have to decide if I do it again next year!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Let's Hear it for New York!

Back in February (I know, I'm behind on my posts!) I took a trip to New York with my friend Heather. We both took the day off work Friday and went up for a long weekend. It was so much fun! And full of sights and things I had never seen/done.

One item on my New York list: the Brooklyn Bridge. For some reason I had it in my head that I wanted to walk across it. Maybe because my favorite book is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. Maybe because it plays a big role in the "Sex and the City" movie. Except I forgot about one thing...I'm terrified of bridges. Absolutely terrified! I'm a little better than I used to be, in that I can now drive across them. But I still don't like it and I definitely don't like walking across them. But, I'm proud to say I conquered my fear and made it! And I was so glad I did. This thing is amazing!
Then while we were walking around the Lower East Side, we stumbled upon this:
If you watch "Real Housewives of New York City" you know what this is. If you don't, you have no idea and I'm not even going to try and explain it!

Then while walking around Greenwich Village, we stumbled upon this:
It's the apartment building from "Friends"!!! The trip was filled with random sightings of famous buildings. We also found the soup kitchen made famous by the Soup Nazi in "Seinfeld" but I didn't get a picture.

Here was the view from our hotel room:
Can you say AMAZING? It was so fabulous. All in all, a wonderful weekend filled with shopping, sight-seeing, eating and the ballet. So great and I want to go back right now!

Checking e-mail

Checking my e-mail is something I do about 19385830893 times a day. I'm not kidding. I am TOTALLY neurotic about it and cannot let it sit there with unread messages. Even if it is junk mail or has nothing to do with me, I still need to read it just so that little (1) will go away.

Well, I got a super sweet email today. This was a time when I was glad to check my e-mail! It just was the cherry on top of a good day. It said:

"Ms. H, you are a positive force in my life and in child's name's."

Oh my gosh, how sweet?!?! I just felt so good, tears welled up in my eyes. This came from a parent whose child has had some difficulty this year, but she has been so good and we have built up a strong rapport this year. I was so glad to share some good news with her and even more glad to get this back. I'm glad I'm making a difference!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Food Revolution!

Tonight I was scrolling through the TV channels when I found on ABC "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution." If you don't know Jamie Oliver, he is this guy:Look familiar? He is British and had a cooking show called "The Naked Chef" for a while. Now he is advocating for healthy foods in school cafeterias. He has changed how schools across Europe view their school lunches and is now working on the USA. So far, it's not looking good. He had some success in West Virginia (where the show's first season was based). Tonight was the first episode of the second season, and this time he is taking on L.A. For a city that is supposedly all about health and body image, they have some pretty bad views on food. You should check it out. Shows air at 7pm (central) Tuesday nights on ABC.

p.s. last year after seeing this show, I made my students only drink white milk. Did you know that chocolate milk has per ounce more sugar than the sugariest soda? That is scary!

Then and Now

One of my best friends from college, Tara, got married a few weeks ago in Cincinnati. I drove up for the wedding and had a blast! It was so much fun to see Tara (I helped her get ready for her first day with her now husband Zac). I wore a new Vineyard Vines dress that I had just purchased and got so many compliments! It felt so good to have people notice my weight loss and to tell me that I looked good. Here I am with the beautiful bride:
And just for comparison, here's a picture of me with my sister at a wedding 4+ years ago. I was going through a "brunette" phase so my hair is darker and shorter, but look at my face! Yikes.
Glad I am finally in a good place and feeling healthy. I just went through my closet a week ago and the dress that I'm wearing above (which was too small then, why I'm wearing a sweater over it) was SWIMMING on me!! Hope somebody can use it at Goodwill because it is gone from my closet! And I'm glad that people are noticing my transformation. Thanks for the encouragement!!

Monday, April 11, 2011

A Good Day

Today was a good day. I've had a few bad days recently, so it was nice to have a good day. I took Friday off of work to have a mental break (which EVERYONE needs at some point). Since I hadn't planned on it, I went in super early to prepare for a sub. I actually got to speak with him for a second before I slipped out before the kids saw me. This morning I went in and found a note from him on my desk. Here was the first line:

"Ms. H, Your class was the best behaved class I have subbed for in this school."

!!!!!! yay, go kids! I was so proud of them and so happy that other people see the hard work I have put into my class. I also bumped 2 reading groups up a level and they killed it. Just so proud of my kids and I love them so much!

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Well, the countdown is officially on. I have 6 weeks until I report to the hospital for surgery. It is very hard to not have a "6 weeks until my life sucks" attitude. I know surgery is the best thing for me. I know I will feel 100x better from it...eventually. It's going to be a long recovery, and that is what I am not looking forward to. I'm not looking forward to living with my parents (sorry Mom and Dad. Love you but I don't want to live with you.) I'm not looking forward to being physically restricted. I'm not looking forward to the pain. I'm not looking forward to putting Biscuit in the kennel for 2-3 weeks. I'm not looking forward to leaving my kids for the last 3 weeks of school. There are so many things I'm not looking forward to.

But enough negative talk. For the next 6 weeks, I'm going to think about all the things I AM looking forward to. I'm really going to focus on being positive and grateful for all the wonderful things I have going on in my life. Because I do have so much good going on.

I'm looking forward to working in the yard on this beautiful Sunday morning. Sure it means skipping church, but we only have beautiful 75 degree sunny days so often. And I have discovered a love of gardening.

I'm looking forward to going to Cincinnati next weekend to see my best college friend Tara get married. And I'm looking forward to wearing my fabulous new dress to show off my fabulous skinny bod (and hopefully meeting Prince Charming while I'm there! Tara has a good match-making record)

I'm looking forward to my sister coming home the next weekend. We're going to get mani-pedi's, watch fun sister movies (our favs are "The Secret Garden" and "Little Women". We're dorks and I love it!). And we'll be celebrating my brother's childhood friend's wedding that weekend. And my kids are singing in church that Sunday.

I'm looking forward to playing hooky from school the next day to hang with my sister because she lives so far away and I never get to see her.

I'm looking forward to Easter the next weekend. It is my favorite Church holiday.

I'm looking forward to going to Louisville the next weekend for the Kentucky Derby. I'm looking forward to going hat shopping for a fabulous hat to wear.

I'm looking forward to buying myself my surgery gift of a new computer. I've had this one since sophomore year (2004). It's about time!

So see? There are a bunch of things I have to look forward to. It helps to write them down to remind myself. But I might need you to help remind me every now and then.