Tuesday, April 29, 2008

one more thing to check off.....texas treats

once a year folks in the elementary school volunteer to take a wednesday morning to provide treats for the staff. tomorrow it's my turn. so today and yesterday i have been busy baking and getting ready for the big day. so far my theme has been texas treats. last year i did the same. this year i am staying with the tradition and have made treats that remind me of home or sound more texas-y than most.

here is what's on the menu at the corral---
chips & salsa
guacomole & sour cream
cowboy cookies
chocolate pecan pie bars
banana bread
hickory-smoked western dip mixed with cream cheese & crackers
choco-rocks & dried cranberries
banana chips

the last few things are a bit random, but i had extra and thought i would throw it in with the rest of the nibbles. hopefully i can manage to get it all to school without major issue.

happy texas treating!!!

Friday, April 25, 2008

only 7 more weeks.....

i cannot believe that i am in the last quarter of this school year already. i know in the previous post i mentioned how crazy things are going to be and they have. although i have a great grade level team that i work with and we have been helping each other tremendously. it has been wonderful. i know that i could not do it without them.

the past few weeks i have been able to check off many things on the list---social studies celebration, report cards, parent conferences, one field trip and some other minor things also. although this week has brought some other school issues to the surface, it is going to be ok.

next week we are in the full swing of rehearsals for the 4th grade production of james and the giant peach and the chapel we are doing. fun, fun, fun! i will be teaching in all the little moments here and there in hopes to cram in more curriculum as i can before the end of the year. it should be prove to be quite interesting. today we made the schedule for rehearsals so i am going to get creative.

for a while now i have had a few things on my heart that keep tugging and reminding me they are there. one of those is to be intentional about being more creative and artsy. part of that includes taking art classes which i have had no luck finding so far. i have been looking since arriving in seoul.....sometimes more often than others, but still. i did buy some fun supplies recently over the spring break holiday and have been doodling here and there. i am struggling with confidence in my ability though too which is not always fun to deal with.

secondly, i keep thinking about what God has in store for me and for us. i would love to take more art classes for art education when we return to the states. i also have a desire to work with kids in a form of urban ministry or something. not sure what it looks like or would be, but praying that God will show me what that is and looks like. i read online at the university of texas website about their art education program, but also a program in theater with youth. i would love to use the arts as a way to reach kids for relationships. so who knows........just putting it all there.

we are off to dinner soon..........chinese dumplings.....yum!!!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

9 more weeks, 7 of which are going to be nasty....

i am thinking about just beginning the IV drip of caffeine tomorrow since for the next seven weeks my life is going to be massively, chaotically, crazy busy. there are only nine more weeks of school, but as i mentioned the next seven are going to be the most insane. the things that are happening are good, just many of them in a small amount of time.

for instance, this week entails resizing photos for the 4F candids page in the yearbook, writing report cards, a crazy 7am production meeting for the 4th grade play--james and the giant peach, an after school meeting, a day of social studies celebration, bookmaking, teaching, and all the other things that come up here and there as a human being. this is just week one of the seven. aaaagggggghhhhh!

i know that things are going to get totally mad. i just pray that i can hold it together and not let the list of things to do completely overhwhelm me. i have to remind myself to focus on only one thing at a time so i can make it through all of this. God give me the guts i need to get through all of this, please.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

a nice reminder.

today is wednesday and it is the late day for me. i teach bookmaking after school and then i help one of my students with her math homework. i am usually at school until 5:15ish.

today was the usual although i took the bookmaking kids on a "field trip" to the 3rd grade talent show. afterwards i still met with my student, but she has caught on to her math homework and whizzes through it. she and her little sister went down to watch the high school soccer game on the field a little early. a few minutes after they left i had another teacher pop in and then my student's dad. the dad had lovely things to say about how i have inspired her to read, read and read some more. even the little sister has become inspired too as to not be shown up by big sister. it was quite nice to hear especially when sometimes i feel as if i am a broken record saying the same stuff over and over in different ways. then after he left the teacher who had popped in also said that she thought i was a great teacher and that teaching is my calling. wow.....

in a job like teaching many times those small, kind words are the one little thing that keeps you going or makes your day worth it. no matter what kind of day you had or what students you wanted to strangle, the words can make the job worth getting out of bed for.

i think that God knows that i need these little reminders to keep clued into the bigger picture-- that He has chosen me for this job. even when i feel completely inadequate or like i am not connecting with my kiddos, He sends little somethings to make me remember that God has a plan and that He will give me the tools i need. Even if it's just a little boost here and there all i have to do is focus on Him and let my heart seek Him.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

tuesdays = nostalgia

a few weeks ago i learned that tuesday is the day the cafeteria makes sandwiches for the early childhood grade's snack time--pre-school, junior kindergarten and senior kindergarten. not only are they sandwiches, but they are jelly sandwiches with good, fluffy brown bread. yum. they also make cheese sandwiches, but i have not tried them. i much prefer jelly ones. i had some at a staff meeting where one of the SK teachers brought the leftovers to share with us. i had quite a few that day. since then i usually go down after school sniffing for an after school snack on tuesdays. the last few weeks there have been no leftovers. :(

today one of the SK teachers sent up three quarter sections of jelly sandwiches just for me. all for me. it was such a joy. as i bit into each one it brought back the best nostalgic feelings of being a kid. the bread is really nice and the jelly is strawberry. gosh, what a few bits of heaven i had today. i love jellly sandwiches......not just any ones, but the ones from the school cafeteria on tuesdays.

Monday, April 07, 2008

deoderant experiment update

after the long day of teaching i was not smelly which was good. vicki and i headed to the gym this evening and i was anxious to see how product #2 was going to prove itself. i did reapply before heading out the door. after 30 minutes on the elliptical and 10 minutes on the treadmill (with polar fleece on) the smellyness was non-existent. upon coming home i knew i would get an upclose sniff test since i was going to shower and change. upclose sniff test---pass!!! so i am pretty satisfied thus far.

the experiment continues........

taco chili chili

vicki introduced me to one of her favorite places in itaewon, taco chili chili. she loves the burritos. i had my first one a few weeks ago, but this weekend we made another trip for take out. paul also got to join in on the burrito love. this is the closest thing we have to freebirds, so far. not really similiar, but will do when you have a hankering for a good burrito. chicken burrito, no onions or jalapenos with a side of guacomole..........YUM!

the search for good natural deoderant continues...

some of you may be wondering what in the world is she talking about?!?! well, beginning last summer i read some articles and others input about the "junk" companies include inside the stuff you put under your arms. i had long switched from one with aluminum, but now the issue seems to be propylene glycol. which yes, my origins brand has a derivitive of.

thus began a search for a deoderant that works and is free from aluminum and propylene glycol. i tried one the week of our honeymoon which did not work. paul still loves me, thank goodness. so we went back to whole foods, returned the one that did not work, and i bought three other brands to try. i decided to wait until recently to begin experimenting.

the last few weeks i have been trying one made by alba botanica (poduct #1) that is lavender scented. i liked the feel, the smell, but it did not work. i was still stinky.

this week i am trying kiss my face active enzyme (product #2). so far it has been working well. we went on a long walk yesterday and there was no super stinkiness as with product #1. today was a normal day of teaching and it worked quite well even though i did sweat quite a bit this afternoon. no smellyness though. i don't want to get ahead of myself, but this might just be a winner.

the week is just starting so we will see.....

Saturday, April 05, 2008


they are one of the best days of the week. the first reason is that i get to sleep in and snuggle in my bed as long as i want. no alarm clocks, no agenda, nothing. then i can also stay in my pjs most of the day. who can ask for anything more? i love being able to be a bum for the day. paul and i have been watching the last few episodes of battlestar galactica season three. so fun.

Thursday, April 03, 2008


you must go and buy Crowded Skies by Tara Leigh Cobble immediately. just click the link. do it! it is an AMAZING read and i could not put it down. seriously, go now to the link and buy the book. do not wait.

you will not regret it. promise.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Lately I have been reading a book by Max Lucado called Facing Your Giants. In the book it talks a lot about the story of David and Goliath. It has been really encouraging to me. One of the verses that I have really thought about a lot is from Hebrews 12:2-3 which says, "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." NIV

After much thought and reflection on this verse and the story of David, I am reminded that God chose me to face whatever "giants" I might be facing. The joy is that God is not going to leave me hanging, he will show up and fight the battle when my heart is focused on him and not the giant. He gave David the tools and focus he needed to overcome the giant, Goliath. All God asks of me is to focus on him with all my heart.

School has been one of the giants I have been facing recently. Before the holiday it was really hard to focus on God and feel like all this was worth something bigger than myself. This morning I was reminded of the idea that I am not alone and that God is not going to stand me up. One of my students shared a treasure she found on a beach in Malaysia while on her holiday, the above rock in the picture. I was in awe. Then she told me that it was for me. I gave her a big hug and told her how special it was. What a wonderful reminder of God's work in my life! It was the highlight of the day which I also shared during my devotion before the staff meeting.