Shannon Falls, August 2012

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

What Was I Thinking?!

I honestly do want to write a lengthy post about all the events surrounding this week of prep for the new school year, but words fail me. I also don't have the energy to put into words everything I've thought or experienced this week. Let's just say it's overwhelming. I still have much to do. My room is finally starting to come together thanks to my mom and sister, but I have a great deal there to organize and clean. Hopefully most of that will get done tomorrow. Friday I have to be in Pascagoula for the all-district meeting. Bummer. I have so much that needs to be done in my room, but I guess it'll have to wait!

Saturday, July 26, 2008


I'm home. Finally, I'm home. I shouldn't say that with such relief because camp was a blessing. Last Sunday night I was dreading leaving Monday morning: I have lesson plans to do, my own mindset to get in order, and just piddling things that need to be taken care of. But God knew what he was doing when David "volunteered" me to go with the junior high students to Fuge at MC. I had a pretty decent relationship with the 8th graders-to-be already, but doors really opened for me to connect with the freshmen ladies I'll be teaching this fall. Thursday afternoon I treated my future Sunday School girls to smoothies and coffee drinks at the campus coffee shop/deli called Jazzman's. We had a wonderful time; I tend to play a sort of 20 questions game with people I don't know. And things got interesting with our questions! There were only 4 freshmen on this trip but they are very different from each other. I had 2 cheerleader-dressed-to-the-hilt young ladies, 1 athlete, and another who keeps to herself but occasionally surprises you. Very interesting combination. But in our hour+ together we interacted, learned about one another, and found connections. It was simply awesome! I had a purpose, I have a purpose, and that is to invest in these young women's lives. I saw myself in my athletic student. She is very much the way I was at her age. This girl is absolutely beautiful but apparently doesn't think she's pretty. I believe she already knocks guys off their feet and she doesn't know it, but I also think she'll be the girl who gets asked to a school dance, such as the jr. prom, and her date will arrive at the door and she'll make him faint. This student and I really bonded. I'm very excited about teaching, both school and Sunday School. I praise God for how He reminded me of Who He is this week; I very much needed a refresher. I do know that I'm not cut out for campus living or cafeteria food anymore!

Ty is very happy to have me home and to be at home herself. My parents and sister graciously watched her this week while I was gone. However, she apparently only hissed and was mean...until Thursday, that is! She got shut in the bathroom on accident all day and when she was released she was a different kitty! But now she is happily curled up on my shoulders, purring her little heart out. She went tearing through the house checking it out, happy to be home, and must have forgotten she couldn't stop on the wood floors. Suddenly I hear scratching feet and a bump as she nails the wall. Oh, it's good to be home! David will fly into Memphis in the morning and then drive immediately home. I can't wait to be with my husband! And on Monday, let the craziness that is a new school year begin!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Old Stomping Grounds

Ever heard someone say he's returned to his old stomping grounds? Well, I'm doing that in more than one way within a span of just a few weeks. This week I am helping shepherd precious little darlings known as 7th and 8th graders (future 8th and 9th graders) through Centrifuge at my college home, MC. David and I will be teaching the 9th grade Sunday School at First Baptist Biloxi this fall, so I have the opportunity to get to know many of students this week. And let me just tell you, it's been quite some time since I was a junior-higher! I'm having a blast with our students, though. What is odd and hard to explain is how I feel being back at MC and not being a student. Facilities have changed, people have changed, offices have a great many ways, this is like coming home--it's familiar and reassuring and comfortable. And in a number of other ways, I feel out of my element...and old! As an RA (Resident Assistant) I had many privileges and freedoms I don't have on this campus this week. Sure, I'm in "charge" of my precious angels, but I can't just roam the campus at free-will. I'm subject to Fuge rules (which is no problem), and I respect their authority. But it's odd to have to listen to individuals who have been here a matter of weeks when I spent 4 years of my life on every inch of this campus. My emotions are so hard to explain. This afternoon I wandered into the Healthplex to check on some of our students. You must understand, the Healthplex was a second home to me next to my dorm room. I spent hours each day in that place getting my workout on. I miss the Healthplex and all that it offers. In some ways, I miss being a college student, but life changes and moves on. I'm a different person than I was 6 years ago as a freshman. Which brings me to my next point of returning to old stomping grounds: next Monday I begin new teacher training/orientation for St. Martin schools in Jackson County, MS. Then on August 6th, I get the pleasure of introducing a slew of 8th graders to the wonderful world of Language Arts. I graduated from St. Martin; shoot, I was a 13 year student there! And after saying David and I would never come back to the Gulf Coast, that's exactly where God drew us back to! It's so good to be home. We've been so busy! But I digress. I think I really understand just how much I've moved on, how my life has changed. Much of that change is due to MC and my experiences here, and it's so very nice to know my way around this week! (But I don't miss the drama of junior high students and crushes and having to check in constantly get the picture!)

Friday, July 18, 2008


David left today for a mission trip with First Biloxi to Vancouver. As he was in Minneapolis during his layover he called and followed up on a job he's been through all the interview steps with. It's been a very anxious week for me waiting to hear! David felt very positive and was content to wait to hear. While he had a few minutes he decided to call the boss and check on his status. And we got great news! Scott had misplaced David's number but definitely wanted him to come on board! So I'm driving back from Memphis (David had to fly out there), my husband's in Minneapolis, and he calls me with this news! What a blessing! I can't even relate the stress that has consumed me over finances and what will be coming this next month. I'm so thankful David has the opportunity to go to Canada and I'm completely grateful to my Father for His provision. My faith is so small!

I leave Monday for Centrifuge at MC where I'm chaperoning the 7th and 8th graders from First Baptist Biloxi. I'm looking forward to it, but I could also really use this week to work on lesson plans because that very next Monday I start new teacher orientation/meetings. Let the chaos begin!

Coming Home

My heart is so full tonight that I don't even know where to begin. As of today, we've been in our new house one full week. It feels longer! We absolutely adore this house. It will be great for holding SS class socials/Bible studies/etc. We accepted this house based solely on pictures the landlords emailed to us, so we weren't quite sure what to expect. The house is actually quite deceiving. It doesn't look that big from the front, but it's deep! There's just something about coming home...not just to a house, but to the Coast. I've missed life here. Now I'm teaching at my former school and living on the street I grew up on? What a small world and sense of humor God has!

Enjoy the pictures of the new house; these are in no particular order.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Because sometimes a song just says it better


I've had days that felt like a thousand years
And years that just fly by
I've had times I've been so sure in life
And then nothing worked out right
I put my hope in so many things I thought that I would need
But it doesn't mean anything, anything, anything to me

I've been around a crowd of people
And felt so all alone
Tried to give up being different
So that I could just belong
Some have tried to tell me who I'm supposed to be
But it doesn't mean anything, anything to me

Only You, You satisfy
Only You are the love of my life
If I got everything I want, no, it still wouldn't do
I got a whole lotta' nothing if I don't got You

When the mirror doesn't match the cover of a magazine
And I'm consumed with all of my fears and insecurities
'Cause I had my idol for a while, but now finally I see
That it didn't mean anything, anything, no

A whole lotta nothing
Oh Lord, I believe it's a
Whole lotta nothing
If You ain't close to me

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


I must admit...I was utterly, truly, completely starting to doubt if we were to move back to the Coast for me to teach. My faith has been and is still being severely tested. I'm very curious as to what all these trials will produce in and through me! One thing I do know is that I'm tired of being walked on and over, and I know that I can stand up for myself and people will still love me. You must understand--I'm a people a fault. I avoid confrontation at all costs. But this is starting to change. Not because I want to "start something" but because I'm tired of being dictated to. There's a fine line between "helping" and "telling". Many of you probably know exactly what I'm talking about. For those who don't, let me put it this way...there are times when you simply want a listening ear, not to be told how to handle something or what you should do. I realize that there are instances in which we do have to ask for help; I'm not discounting that. But there are many times I want to be transparent with a friend or loved one and feel I can't. Why can't I just lay my feelings and emotions bare and then just be hugged or cried with? So many people want to offer a solution, and while brainstorming can open new venues you haven't considered, many times I only need someone to nod in the appropriate places and say "No matter what, I love you. If you screwed up 100,000 times, I'd still love you. I'd talk to you. I wouldn't shut you out."

Have you ever considered how not transparent we are as a society? How many families do you know who fight all week long, bickering, sarcastic and critical, until the moment they set foot on church grounds? Others continue their arguing or discontent until they pass through the building doors. I'm not pointing fingers; I've been there. I'm not trying to cast a shadow over my family, either. I'm merely offering an example. When we're asked how things are going, our reply is nearly always the same (this goes for everyone, not just my family), "Good." "Just fine, thank you. And you?" "Very well." "Couldn't be better!" "Can't complain." And so forth. Know what I'm talking about? We plaster fake, happy smiles on our faces until the moment we're 'free' to pick up where we left off. We tell everyone we're so blessed, yet we can barely stand to be in the same room with a parent or sibling.

Anyways, the other aspect of being transparent I've been pondering is knowing when to ask for help. Believe me, it's humbling. Sometimes it downright (dare I say it) sucks. It can be humiliating. Yesterday I went to someone for advice and wound up with an immense blessing; I wasn't looking for it. I had a solution in mind (but definitely not the one I wanted) and someone offered me a hand up. Just that little bit of encouragement with no strings attached changed my attitude. I slept through the night last night for the first time in weeks. Don't get me wrong, I'm still worried about a great deal, but I woke up feeling some hope, some assurance that I could get through the day without tears. Is the road ahead easy? By no means, NO! But I know I can get through the next few days. I have to.

Tomorrow night we're loading the moving truck and early Friday morning we'll be headed to the Coast. If a few more details would kindly work themselves out I'd feel such a burden lifted. They His time. Too bad we can't comprehend His time!

Thursday, July 3, 2008


I'm not. We're not. Never will be. And it's killing me. Please understand, I don't want to be so sufficient ever that I don't need my Father. But I want to be sufficient on this planet in knowing that THROUGH Him we can provide for our family and ourselves. That probably doesn't make any sense, and I don't know how to write it any clearer. I'm tired of jumping when the phone rings, not knowing what to expect on the other end. I'm tired of not knowing how this or that will get taken care of. I'm tired of looking to tomorrow because I don't feel I can enjoy today. Will I ever feel I'm semi-sufficient?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Bulletin Board

Hey, all my avid readers! I need help! I'm trying to come up with classroom decorating ideas. I don't want just a room with blank walls. I'm also severely on a budget and don't have past items to use! Right now I'm thinking about a bulletin board, but I'm just not sure what to do. Nothing cheesy like, well, I don't want to give examples because some of you may have used those ideas! But I'll have 8th graders and want my room to be an enjoyable place to learn: comforting but clean. Any thoughts?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


This was in the Sun Herald (south MS's newspaper) today in the Sound Off section. The editors pick and choose the reader comments that go in each day's paper. The bad part of this may not be that the contributor obviously doesn't know what an acronym is, but that the Sun Herald actually ran this one... priceless. I guess stop is now spelled differently in south Mississippi!

Stop means stop!

• "STOP is not an acronym for 'slowing only to pause.' It means to stop when you come to a stop sign. So would you please stop when you come to a stop sign instead of running out in front of someone and almost killing them?"

Again, I reiterate...STOP or SOTP?
*Maybe it's a good thing I'm teaching English. We might just cover acronyms very soon into the first of the year!

Pacing Guides

So here I've been, trucking along doing PowerPoints and printing off lesson plans, trying to get ready for the start of the year when BAM! I take a closer look at my pacing guides and get thoroughly, utterly confused. Why? Because I have a stack of almost 30 sheets of paper that outline the 4 terms of what I am to teach. Okay, so why was I lost then if it was all laid out before me? Again, because as I'm going through I see Term 1, Term 2, Term 3, Term 4. No big deal, right? Then I hit Term 1, Term 2, Term 3, Term 4 again. What's the deal? Yesterday I didn't have enough time to deal with it, so I pushed my frustrations aside and tackled the stack this morning. Finally, I figured out that one set is for READING and the other is for LANGUAGE ARTS, which means I have to combine what is to be taught each term in both sections into a course that flows and makes sense! I had nearly thrown away the latter set, assuming it was simply a repeat of what I already had. I have a nice little notebook filled with sheets, tests, quizzes, lesson plans, etc. for my reading segment but I've yet to start the grammar that makes up Term 1. Nouns, here I come! (Let's just say I will definitely be doing a refresher on conjuctions and types of pronouns. EEK!!)