Life Style Alterations

I realize I haven't blogged in quite some time. But I figured, what better time to pick it up again, than in a fresh new year?!

I'll first start off with my "life-style alterations" for 2012:
1. Take better care of my body and make more of an effort to being healthier.
I'm not talking crazy diets, but eating healthy foods and exercising. I know, I'm one of a million who resolve to "get in shape" this year, but it's more than that. It's about achieving a better lifestyle. I entered a "biggest loser" competition at work. My co-teacher and I are partners. I'm not really in it to win it, but I figured, if nothing else, paying into it will be motivation enough! Who wants to waste $25? I discussed my desire with Eric, and he jumped right on board! He also wants to be healthier and is making an effort to work out at as well this year. He mentioned how taking care of our bodies really isn't for us. It's for the people we love and for our future kids.

2.  Be more productive and less of a "noodlehead"
In our home, a "noodler" is someone who spends time "noodling" online. For me, it's facebook and my newest addiction, pinterest. For Eric, it's playing games and keeping up on the latest photography tips and trends. Rather than "noodling", I'd like to keep up with my scrapbooks, try new recipes, and read for pleasure. For Eric it's actually using his camera to perfect his photography skills. I recognize that come January 23rd, my free time will be pretty scarce, but until then, I'd like to at least finish scrapbooking the honeymoon!

Happy New Year! Here's to a great 2012!


Busy as a Bee!

Yes. I'm well aware. It's been a while! But here is why I have very little time to update:

Grad. School
I am taking three classes this semester. 
Understanding the ELL (English Language Learner) - Tuesdays 7-9
Language Acquisitions - Wednesdays 4-6
Children's Literature - Thursdays 7-9
Because school is only 15 minutes away from work, it doesn't make sense to come home in between.
I'm out of the house from 7:30-the end of class. 

5 days a week I am a full-time intern at the Consentino school in Haverhill. I am mostly working alongside the kindergarten teacher but I also help out in first grade. I LOVE it! I love the administration and every one I work with! Amy (the kindergarten teacher) and I have become instant friends! They treat me like one of the staff. I feel so welcome and so involved.

Community Group
Eric and I have resigned from leadership and decided to create a rotating schedule. This way everyone gets a turn to lead and no one person/couple is responsible for the whole season. The series is called The Christian Atheist. We are really enjoying it so far; discussion has been great.

Sunday School
I committed to teaching the toddler (2s and 3s) class for the next nine months. Our children's ministry leaders recognize the importance of consistency and routine for little children and want to build strong relationships between the students and their teachers. I completely agree so I committed and am loving it so far! It helps that both of my nieces are in my class, too! It's been really fun. 
Quick Aside: Last week I taught about Moses, Pharaoh, and the frog plague. I explained to the kids that Pharaoh was a really mean king and wasn't nice to the Egyptian workers. I asked what they thought God should do to Pharaoh, and my niece Bella said, "Put him in time-out!". 

(Enough said.)

In my (very little) free time, I spend time with my family and husband. He's been wonderful during this stage of our lives. He has been picking up some overtime and always helps with dinner and house chores.

It will be a long, busy year. But in the end, worth it. 


Remembering August 7th, 2009

During our dating years, we would take turns planning date nights. August 2009 was Eric's month and he cooked dinner for me. As always, I like to put my hair up before I eat, so I ran upstairs to get a hair tie... and Eric followed me. I thought that was odd, but then as I entered my room... Eric's huge computer screen was set up on my desk, with the words "click me". So I sat down and watched the most beautiful montage of our dating life. At the end were the words I had been anxiously awaiting and a handsome man knelt on one knee behind me holding the best present I've ever received!

I can understand why he wanted me to go to my room after we ate dinner.... I was too excited to eat! So instead, we picked up a bottle of champagne and headed up to the boat where my family was and celebrated at the dock!

The cork flew into the water, so my uncle jumped into the dingy to save it!

The saddest thing about our wedding day was the technical difficulties with the engagement slideshow not playing all the way through. So this is my simple way of sharing our special day with everyone. Sorry it's not a video, I'm not technically savvy and didn't know how to put it in! Click play on the youtube video while you click through the slides. That's what was playing in the background while I watched.


From teacher to student

This past spring, my wonderful friend Jamie informed me of a graduate fellowship program at Merrimack College. It's basically free grad school for my services as a student teacher for one year. Not a bad gig! So I applied and got in! The timing was perfect! Eric got offered the job at Noise Control right before I received my acceptance. God had it all planned out, knowing I would have had to decline if Eric didn't have a job, considering there is no pay stipend for me. It's a one year program. I take classes July-May and will be student teaching in Haverhill Sept.-June. And in May, I will have my Masters in English as a Second Language! I am so excited because I know this will open doors for me in the future.

I started my first class this week.. It's called A Successful and Positive Classroom. The professor is fantastic! She is a fourth grade teacher in Westford and is such a wonderful example of what a good teacher really is. She is very practical and knowledgeable and I am looking forward to learning from her. I also love the book she uses. It's called The First Days of School: How to be an Effective Teacher. It's awesome! I recommend it to any and every teacher out there! So far, I've read about the effect high expectations have on children and how to set up a classroom that guarantees success and promotes high self-esteem. 

Along with life updates, I will also be blogging about what I've learned. Hopefully it is beneficial to you, but it is more of way for me to connect and think through the freshly learned material. 

1. Teachers should be the thermostat, not the thermometer. As a teacher, you have the choice to set the tone or react to that of the students. 
2. Always use please and thank you when speaking to kids. People who neglect to say please to children are teaching them that it is okay to bark orders and ignore the dignity of others.
3. Student success is limited by adult expectations. 

Our Business
Ours is not the business of producing doctors,
or lawyers, or teachers, or nurses,
or scientists, or policemen, or sales people,
or factory workers - or higher test scores.

Ours is the business of producing smiles on young faces, 
happiness in young hearts, and dreams in young minds.

The rest will take care of itself.


Top 10 of the past 4

It's been four months since my last post...here's a quick recap.  

1. We celebrated our 1 year anniversary...
in Prague!

2. Eric graduated with his masters in engineering in May! 

3. ERIC GOT A JOB! He is now working at Noise Control Engineering in Billerica and LOVES it! 

 4. Not necessarily a "top" lister, but it is a joy knowing mom is now in heaven with papa.

5. I received a fellowship and will be getting my Masters in ESL at Merrimack. 
(I will be taking classes at night and student teaching for the school year in Haverhill.)

6. We had an amazing trip to Europe!

7. We are expecting our sixth niece or nephew in November! 
(Congrats to Sandra and Dave!)

8. I finished up my second and final year as the second grade teacher at Mount Hope. 
(It was a fun ending to a great year! I am going to miss my students a lot!)

9. We re-signed our lease. 
(It was the right decision - Eric's job is 5 minutes away and my commute is about 25 minutes against traffic.) 

10. Loving my new summer venture as a tutor.