Sunday, November 22, 2015

on teaching vocabulary words to five year olds

I subbed in two different kindergarten classes last week. In the first classroom, I introduced a new vocabulary word for their reading unit: slender. We talked about what it meant and looked around the room for slender things like pencils and straws. We even chatted about how Abraham Lincoln was tall and slender.

Three days later I was in another kindergarten class in a different building. A student says to me, "Teacher, you're not very slender." I gave my usual canned response I give to all students who comment on my size (as I'm saying to myself), 'Wow, he really learned what that word meant' was, "Well, not everyone is the same size. We all come in lots of different shapes and sizes. Imagine how boring the world would be if everyone was the same size."

Ya. That was my week. How the heck was yours?

Sunday, November 15, 2015

sunday stuff

eating nothing at the moment.
drinking water, but I'm about ready to make some tea.
hoping I wrote my 3 IEP goals out right for tonight's assignment. My current class is Children with Exceptionalities and I'm learning all about special ed. stuff. There are more acronyms in special ed. than I've ever heard in my entire life.
listening to silence. Well, the hum of the laptop, I guess.
loving these flowers brought to me on Saturday just because.
procrastinating on sweeping and mopping the bathroom floors. Maybe tomorrow. I did get the carpets cleaned this week, so at least I have that finally done.
finding some bargains at Goodwill this week. Two brand new pairs of Lane Bryant jeans and a brand new Land's End sweater. That never happens.
napping this afternoon for an hour. Phil had a class (he's learning the ins and outs of starting a private practice) and I worked on homework for a while before I decided to go for it. It's been a while since my last Sunday afternoon nap. Wilson happily joined me. I didn't want to get up. It was so dark already and he was being snuggly. He has a birthday coming up this week. My birthday boy is going to be 4 years old!
cheering for the home team. We went to a Portland Trail Blazer's preseason game a couple of weeks ago and football has been on pretty much every day. Monday night football, Thursday night football, Saturday college football, and Sunday the Seahawks are on. Since when did football take over the entire television???
gearing up for Thanksgiving. Pumpkin pie and/or pumpkin crunch cake, anyone?
loving the fall colors. A lot of trees still have their leaves, or like, half their leaves. But we've had some rain last night and today that will probably zap a lot of them. The sky has been pretty cool lately too.
anticipating Christmas stuff. Ladies luncheon at church (our theme this year is An Old Fashioned Christmas) and the annual cookie party and being done with my class and not having homework for almost a month.
admitting that I haven't walked my dog in a week.
needing new shoes. I have the hardest time finding shoes. The bottoms of my feet are super sensitive, so no stitching or bumpy stuff at all. It's a pain to shoe shop.
making not a whole heck of a lot. I did design the tickets for the Christmas luncheon last night. That's about the extent of my creativity. I was in a kindergarten class a week or so ago and these flowers on the wall caught my eye. The teacher told me she made them for her wedding and then brought them to hang up in her room. They're made entirely of paper.

reading my textbook. and blogs. and a message board or two.
wondering about how I can try to get ahead a little bit with school work so I don't end up in the crazy house in mid-December.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

fall break

So my 6th grad class ended October 16 and I had until the 26th before my next class started. Ten days of freedom!!! It also just so happened to be parent-teacher conference time when I wasn't working. When I saw that was going to happen back in August, I told Phil, "We are going to the beach." And we did. We went camping. Well, not exactly. We went cabining. Because who wants to set up and sleep in a tent at the beach in October? Not me. (In other news, I think our tenting days are done. But back to the story.)

We looked online for either a pet friendly cabin or yurt so we could take the world's best dog. Turns out, there aren't a lot of choices. But Cape Disappointment on the Washington coast has three pet friendly (heated) cabins. And that's where we went. Neither Phil505 nor myself had ever been to Cape Disappointment, and, unlike Lewis and Clark, we were not disappointed. It was so beautiful!

Cape Disappointment is on the north side of the Columbia River in the bottom corner of Washington. So in some spots you see the river and the jetties and in others you see the Pacific Ocean.

We left Thursday after Phil got home from work and we got to the beach just in time for the sunset. This is the view from Beards Hollow Overlook.

The first night we were the only people in our loop except the camp hosts. That changed Friday night when we were invaded by two Boy Scout troops on both sides of the cabins. Middle school boys are. . . interesting.

We hiked the Benson Beach Trail and ended up here. This, I guess, is Benson Beach on the Pacific. Wilson was the only dog and there were only two other people out here that we saw.

Looking north you can see the North Head Lighthouse. The other white building is the keeper's quarters which you can rent out in the summer.
I didn't remember ever going to see this lighthouse, but Phil505 assured me we had. When I saw the pointy spire thing on top, then I remembered.

Just mere steps away from our cabin was Waikiki Beach and the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. Tucked up on the hill is also the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. We didn't make it up there this time, but we plan on going back for sure.
The beach was small, and tucked in between this cliff and the jetty. It was one of the best beaches I've ever been to on the coast.

It was a nice relaxing getaway with my guy. He even drove me to Long Beach so I could get an ice cream cone. Huckleberry cheesecake in a waffle cone, in case you were wondering.
Wilson is a great camping dog. To an extent. Then when he can't tolerate being on the ground anymore, he wines for a chair. He does love the beach though, no doubt about that.
From our little picnic table area we saw a whole lot of wildlife. Can you spot the bald eagle? I saw it fly across the lake. That was so cool.
We had a blue heron and another kind of crane fishing just on the other side of the lake.
There were deer all over the place. We also saw raccoons and otters.
And then there was my personal favorite, the wooly bears. The term wooly bear is an Ohio thing. We have wooly bear festivals and all kinds of weirdness about wooly bears on the 6:00 news' weather report. This was only the second time I've seen them in the northwest, so I had to take a picture.
Saturday night it started to rain. We were fine, heated cabin and all. We drove home earlier on Sunday than we had planned after we stopped for breakfast. It was like driving through the clouds. The rain has been (an annoying) welcome around here after our extremely dry summer.
And now we're back and I'm deep in the books again. I'm taking Children of Exceptionality this subterm. It's class #7 out of 12. I'm on the downhill slide now and hope to be finished by the end of August 2016, just in time to hopefully get a job for the fall.

Monday, October 5, 2015

the week of rebounds

So last weekend Mr. Wilson was limping around here like an old man-dog. He was babying his right front paw and wouldn't let me touch it. In fact, he growled at me all fierce-like when I tried to look at the bottom of it to see if he had something stuck in the pads. We waited it out until Monday and Phil took him to the vet. Turns out he had some kind of bacterial infection on his paw. Two prescriptions and a week with no walks later, he's doing just fine. The meds make him really thirsty, which, of course, means he has to go outside a whole lot more. But other than that, he's as good as new. And still as lazy as ever.
The same day that Phil took Wilson to the vet we also took his Jeep to the shop. The engine light had come on Sunday afternoon and we didn't figure it was going to be good news we would hear. It wasn't. Apparently Jeeps aren't made to last real long and the engines go bad. Nice that someone conveniently forgot to tell us that when we bought it. RIP Lady Liberty. You gave us lots of memories: driving on the beach for miles and miles, camping up at Lake Wanatchee, Christmas trees hauled home, trips to the dog park and Sonic, Sirius satellite radio, and even a flat tire that one time.
So instead of throwing thousands of dollars into a worthless car, we decided to trade it in and get something else. Here's our rebound car, a 2010 Nissan Murano.
Our plan was to wait one more year and get a new car as my graduation present. However, things rarely go as you have planned. And I got my graduation present a year early. Phil is driving the Taurus now and I'm still learning where everything is on the Murano.
In other news I have finished up a couple longer-than-usual for me sub jobs. I started the year in 2nd grade and did that for seven days. Then after a couple of days off, I did a two and a half week paternity leave for a guy in 3rd grade. I had today off, no jobs available. I cleaned the bathroom and asked Phil if I'd let him drive the new car if he'd take me to my happy places.

First stop: Latourell Falls.
 Second stop: Multnomah Falls (this picture was taken from the parking lot)
It was a great day for people watching. So many people taking and retaking and coming back a few minutes later to retake the same exact picture. I was cracking up.

 Third stop: Wahkeena Falls. This one just kind of winds its way down the hill.

It was a beautiful fall day. My favorite kind with my favorite guy.

Friday, September 25, 2015

earth calling blogland. come in blogland.

Blogland, do you read me? I'd be surprised if you even stopped by here anymore, what with my extremely poor posting practices these days. I still think about blogging. It's the thought that counts, right?

Let's see. Ohio. We hadn't been home in two years, it was time. We went at the end of August. I had to take the obligatory picture of the PDX carpet.  I don't know why. It's just what people do. So I did.
We took a red eye on a Friday night. Landed in Dallas/Ft. Worth. And then on to Cleveland. Because Cleveland rocks. (Note the trendy-Wendy glasses.) May I add, we did not get the seats we chose when we booked our flights. Didn't make me happy, but we survived. barely. And when I say barely, I mean the cotton pickin' seats are so close together it's a wonder my elbow bones didn't permanently end up in my abdomen.
Sun coming up somewhere over Arkansas (I think).
We had a great time, even if I had to do homework at my mom and dad's dining room table every day. We found our fair share of activities. We waited for the new refrigerator to come because mom's died pretty much the day we got there. That was an exciting morning.

We went to see a waterfall. (Who knew, Ohio has waterfalls?) This is Brandywine Falls. Short little family fun hike in.
Photo bombed by Dad and Phil. Note Phil is wearing his Oregon Ducks jacket.

Some of the nephews and a niece. Darick, 17. Hannah, 13. Keegan, 8. Carson, 10. (I think.)
Note the parents are both sporting Ohio State gear. Go Bucks!
We went to the historic Roscoe Village and bummed around (because the canal ride in Canal Fulton was closed.)
We ate at Bob Evans and Perkins and the Lyn Way. I visited with a couple friends (though not nearly as many friends - or even relatives, for that matter - as I wanted to see because of stupid homework). I'd have to say, though, that one of the highlights of the trip was riding in the back of Melissa's convertible with the top down.
We had a girls' day/guys' day. We got pedicures, they went to a baseball game in Cincinnati.
We went to a football game at my old high school so we could watch Hannah march in the marching band. She's got my old flute! The high school band is so small they had to invite the middle school band to join them. Good ol' small town Ohio.
We had a retirement party (travel themed) for my parents.
I made a couple banners out of an old atlas from the Goodwill.
This lady just turned 95 right before we arrived.
Me and my Grandma.
Uncle Terry, Uncle Sam & Aunt Ann.
Me and Keegan.
Mom, Dad, and Uncle Terry.
I went to grandma's house. We ate a crapload of Pepperidge Farm cookies.

Our flight didn't leave Cleveland until 4 in the afternoon, so we had some time to bum around. We checked out the West Side Market and found the beach.
Cool billboard outside of the market. Recognize anybody?

We tried to get this kid out of bed before 2pm every day. He's been living with my parents since April and all he wants to do is sleep. He's a junior this year.
Cleveland through the fog.
Phil celebrated his birthday in the air as we traveled back to PDX. And I started school the very next morning. More on that next time. . .