Shannon Falls, August 2012

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Longer School Year?

While there may be many positive benefits to US students spending more time each day and/or more time each year in school, I would just like to say, Mr. Obama, try walking in the shoes of a teacher first. There is no way I could manage another 3 hours every day of school; no way. I'm there almost 10 a day as it is. Then there is still work that needs to be brought home in order to be finished. I recognize that other careers probably require even more work (though I'd be the first to argue that teaching is one of the most demanding jobs available).

I've known many parents to complain about having to deal with their children at home (Hello! They're your kids!), but try dealing with 80, or 160, daily. I bust my butt to provide the best teaching I can to my students. Yes, I'm still learning better methods and better presentation, but it's a never-ending process. If we're in school longer each day, when am I supposed to be a mom or rest or do anything else? What about a longer school year? By the time it's all said and done, yes, we might get roughly 2 months off in the summer. But talk to nearly any educator, and you'll find they've spent that time furthering their own education, working on lesson plans, or completing professional development. Maybe I'm abnormal in that I spend my summer/holidays working on work. But with my schedule now, the only time I'll have to devote to my Master's is in the summer. Take that away, and how do you expect me to become even more qualified to do my job? Nope, Mr. President. Nope. Test scores. That's all it ever seems to be about.

Monday, September 21, 2009

What a Monday, Pt. II

I failed to mention the severe amount of punishment work I had to give a fella because he called a female student a f--. Yep, one of those days.

What a Monday

My Monday?

Classes that are normally great were horrendous.

Hayden slept very little last night. My longest stretch of "rest" was 2 hours.

I was supposed to have the WINGS teacher come give a presentation each period, so I planned for that. She only made one class. I had to scramble to fill the 30 minutes she was supposed to take.

We had 2 fights: one at break, one in the boys' bathroom.

I was repeatedly handed more paperwork or had meetings scheduled without my input. Meetings=no planning period. And I can only stay so late after school because our sitter has another part-time job.

I nearly chained a boy to a desk just to keep him seated! It blew his mind.

Our 2 behavior-issue kids were finally both at school. Joy. Imagine what you will about them. It's probably true (sadly and unfortunately).

Another male student told a male teacher he was something really bad. I won't dare repeat it.

Yet another male student brought beer to school and got caught. Because he bragged. And has apparently done it before. Heeeeellllll-ooooooo! Yeah, and I had just bragged on him at lunch. Heavy sigh.

Kids whined all day long. Not that that was much of a change.

What else? Oh, my gradebook program decided to become possessed and wouldn't work.

The internet on my laptop will not stay connected so I can't use it as a resource...for anything.

Planning to be out for 2 days in a training workshop on thinking maps; not looking forward to the stacks of paper that will await my return.

I'm missing something, but I think you get the idea of how my day went. If it was possible, I'd be in bed now. Maybe Hayden will go down easily tonight and stay asleep---for a few hours. He wakes, not wanting to eat, but he just stirs and then gets himself worked up. Not sure how to get him to stay asleep; I think it's just one of those things. He's made so much progress and continually grows by leaps and bounds. This too shall pass, and one day I know I'll miss these nights. He's become quite the cuddler and will hug me around the neck--esp. if he's overstimulated or tired. I couldn't imagine life without him. He watches tv only if music videos (esp. Sunday mornings on Gospel Music Channel) or football is on. I'm honestly not kidding. He holds his own bottle and can play in his exersaucer. He would almost rather put himself to sleep now and can't stay to be lying down now that he's working on mastering sitting up and rolling completely over. His two front bottom teeth are in and he's thinning up. He's incredibly strong. I could go on and on.

Best part of my day? Coming home earlier than normal to my almost 5 month old, though he's been asleep for 2 hours--since before I got home. I've had 2 hours of "me" time--checked my email, worked on a meal list (we're trying to plan for about a month at a time and grocery shop that way--save time and money), got supper started, and looked forward to my wonderful husband coming home. The sleeping baby is beginning to stir. I need Hayden time!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Open House

The most refreshing thing I heard tonight at Open House? Mom: "So? How is he?" Me: "Well, we seem to have some issues staying in our seat." Mom nods, but I hear dad in the background to ___________, "Son, do you need a reason NOT to be able to stay in your seat?" Thank you, dad.

Another mom: "How's he doing?" As I struggle to find something positive to start our conversation with, she asks, "Give me the truth, please." Open Pandora's Box.

Different note: Hayden giggled at me this morning as I entered the room to tell him goodbye. Best sound in the world to exit by.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Barely There

How in the world do you get to a point in your life where you're so comfortable that you can wear hardly anything in public? I'm watching bits and pieces of the VMAs being rerun, and I'm just appalled. Some people really should have just worn their underwear; that's what their "outfits" amount to. I worry all day long about my students getting a glimpse of anything of mine, and others parade around with boobies, booty, and belly hanging out. I'm sorry, but I find it gross. Leave something to the imagination. I tell my students--you don't want to see mine, I don't want to see yours. So far we've found a happy medium, at least in that respect.

Modesty is not only an ornament, but also a guard to virtue.” Joseph Addison

Keep it covered! Guys, I'm talking to you too. There, I feel better.

Sunday, September 13, 2009


My baby boy will be 5 months old in 12 days, and he is quickly learning independence. He holds his own bottle the majority of the time, he has mastered giggling/laughing, he can sit briefly on his own (before he falls forward, causing him to be unable to breathe!), and his two bottom teeth are clearly visible and breaking skin. Wasn't he just born yesterday???

Saturday, September 12, 2009


I'm having one of those days where I feel simply ugly. I hate my body, my hair, my breaking out face, etc. And unfortunately, I don't want to do anything to fix my perception of myself at this moment.

Maybe some AL football in about an hour will cheer me up.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Many Faces of a Four Month Old

In the process of uploading more, Blogger went bananas and I was too frustrated to wait on the others to upload. Just check out my entire album on Facebook!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Our Greatest Gift

As I was putting our son to bed tonight, I was nearly moved to tears looking at Hayden. David and I enjoy our baby boy so very much and can't wait to experience all of life with him. Every day I see students whose parents either never wanted them or who find their children a mere inconvenience. My heart breaks for these kids. They act out in order to gain some sort of attention--usually it's negative, but someone is still focused on them for that amount of time.

I will never understand why people have babies when they either aren't ready or don't even desire them. So many couples crave being able to hold their own child and are unable, while others have children they do not want. I'm not saying this is the case for all of my students, but more often than not this year I've been told that "so-and-so's" mom repeatedly tells her she doesn't want her or his folks don't care what's going on in his life and we'll never see them. I witnessed an exchange between my principal and a sweet young boy that broke my heart today. Unfortunately, I can't give details because anyone can read this, but I will say that watching my students makes me realize how much responsibility I do have and how badly I do not want to mess up raising my son. I am so grateful to have a husband who desires to raise our children in a Godly home. I also do not have to parent alone!

Every night before bed I tell Hayden I love him and how special he is. Every night. I do tell my students I love them (especially when I'm the most frustrated) because I want them to know that no matter what I do care for them. Some of them never hear positive words; how tragic to be constantly belittled and to know you are not wanted. If a student feels safe in my room and if he/she hears encouragement only for 55 minutes a day, then at least I've given him/her that. How great a gift to be able to bear and raise children (even if they're not your biological children--adoption is an amazing gift as well); I only wish we all felt the same way.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

4 month stats

Today was Hayden's 4 month check-up. Let's just say that my son is healthy and right on target! He took his shots like a champ and is smiling and giggling. Here are his latest stats:

Height: 29 inches (off the charts)
Weight: 20 lbs. 11 oz (off the charts)
Head: 17 1/2 inches in circumference (97th percentile)

My grandmother has mentioned putting Hayden on a diet (maybe jokingly, maybe not), but Dr. Bristol is completely happy with Hayden. His weight is proportionate to his height, so there's nothing to worry about. His motor skills are on point, and he's ready to play for the Crimson Tide this weekend! Oh, wait, Saban's on the phone! Gotta go!

He is one active baby boy! And we'll be going to a convertible seat VERY soon!