Friday, October 29, 2010

Story Book Parade

Today was the story book parade at school. The students pick their favorite character from a book, dress up as the character and then parade around the school with the book in hand as the other grade levels and parents watch. It's always a hit and the students eat it up!

Some of my favorites in my class were two best friends who dressed up as The Tortoise and The Hare - they were real cute. And then the cutest girl pirate I have ever seen in my entire life. I'm going to have to ask her mother for permission to post a picture because you just have to see this!

The First Grade teachers were The Wizard of Oz. Somehow I pulled the short straw and got to wear the formal dress and be the good witch. I think it's more of, let's make the newby (totally not sure how to spell that) be the high maintenance dressed one. I only tripped on my dress 10 times trying to walk to my car this morning.

... never knew there was a such thing as a good witch nor did I know they wore crowns. This one refused to wear heels.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tiger Tunes

You'll want to scroll down to the bottom and pause the music player so that you can hear these videos. Since I don't have a lot of time to post tonight I figured i'd share some Tiger Tunes with you.

And if you aren't familiar with this wonderful event - it's where the different social clubs at OBU pick a theme, find clips from songs and change the words in order to fit their theme and then put on a big show in order to raise money for future students to be able to come to Ouachita.

It's a really big deal to OBU-ers!

Here is the EEE's show from 2009.... I love this one because it tells a story and flows! Amy and Bethany, who's blog are on my sidebar, are both in this show! Amy is a native and Bethany is the little girl with the speaking part.

And the percussion section from this past weekend. yum! I like a beat, what can I say!

Here is the Eta's show from 2010 - they won the "theme" category on Friday night when we were there.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Organize - The Purse

It's really not that hard to control the mess in your purse, but so many women have a hard time with it. There are countless purse organizers out there on commercials and in magazines for you to buy in order to "help" keep your purse organized, but let's face it... i'm not buying it.

Lots of girls/women like to change out their purse depending on their outfit or season, but yet i've heard over and over, "Don't judge the fact that my purse totally clashes with my outfit today. I didn't feel like cleaning out this one in order to put everything in a new one."

I've been made fun of on many occasions at how I change my purse to match what i'm wearing... and for the record, I really don't that often unless it totally clashes. It kills me that people think it's such a time consuming task. It literally takes me less than a minute - case in point, I did it in the car on the way to Tiger Tunes last Friday night. Quick switch and then back again the next day.

So here is what works for me!

Take a look at the inside of my purse currently...

My friend's mother was joking one time that her daughter had a bunch of bags inside her bag. And really and truly, that is my system, but before we go there we clearly need to start with the wallet.

I'm sure most of us have this one already, but if you don't.... what on earth are you doing to yourself? My wallet has fifty million slots and storage places in it, but if you don't have a place for your coins then I would get a small bag to hold the change so that it's not rolling around in the bottom of your purse creating a big huge mess. How many times have you searched the bottom of your purse for a quarter for the coke machine when you could have saved time by simply having a coin bag.

This bag holds my chap-stick, lipstick, and gloss as well as feminine items on the bottom and a few bobby pins that I might need when i'm in public and my bangs are completely driving me insane :) !

Every morning on my way to work I reach over and grab my bag so that I can put on my chap-stick. And then it's so easy to just stick it back in. I don't have to dig around in my purse while driving pulling out everything that feels like my chap-stick only to pull it out and realize it was not what I was looking for. It's a quick, easy fix.

Speaking of digging around your purse to find things. I finally bought one of these after getting completely annoyed that I couldn't find (or reach) my keys in my huge purse/bags that I carried last year. You can get them all over the place in a lot of different looks. Definitely a time-saver!
Bath-n-Body Works has those things that hold your hand sanitizer and hook onto your key chain. And here's a cute one I found on etsy! If you don't like all that hanging from your key chain then put it in your feminine bag!

The next bag I have is my trash bag. I know you're probably thinking, do wha? It works for me and that's all that matters.

I can't stand gum wrappers and little balls of trash hanging out in my purse so I bought this bag to put those types of things in when i'm in church or the movies or anywhere that a trash can is not within reach. Then when you're in the restroom or close to a trash can you simply take it out and dump it when it's full. Call me crazy!

To-Do lists are a big huge part of my life. Really! I'd forget a LOT if it weren't for my to do lists.
I found myself making the same lists over and over and then losing them. There had to be a better way.

So now I have this little journal type deal in my purse so that I can have it with me at all times. Think about it - if i'm at school and need to make a list for the store all I have to do is write it in there and then there's no digging for that loose piece of paper in my purse. When I get to the store I don't have to worry about forgetting to tear off the last post-it on the grocery list on the fridge. It's already in my purse. Perfection!

And so now you have room to put your pens as well as your phone in the zipper on the inside of your purse. That just about covers it for me, but anything else that is important to you can either sit freely inside your purse since everything else is put away in a bag, or you can get a bag for that as well!

My camera is the only other thing that I typically have with me.... and yes, it has a bag!

When you're ready to switch out purses for the new season (or outfit) - just grab your bags and switch 'em over! It really doesn't have to be such a time-consuming, cleaning out the trash task.

I'm not promising that my system will work for you, but it works for me and that's the key; find what works for you and stick with it!

Hope this helps!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

A Series...

One of the first things people comment on when they walk into my classroom is how organized it is. There have been jokes cracked about how I could have a second job decorating and organizing classrooms. And if that were a real life job then I might just take someone up on that offer.

I love to organize!

Notice I did not say that I was organized; I love to organize.

Being organized is an ongoing process.

One of the perks of being a teachers AIDE for a year is getting to see what works and doesn't work, and what is the most important when it comes to your classroom. Organization is so stinkin' important when it comes to the teaching profession. (and i'm sure many others as well)

I can't even begin to tell you how much time I save simply because my room is organized. Everything has a place and I know exactly where to go when I need it. It's also a huge advantage because anytime someone drops in my classroom without warning I don't have to panic that my room doesn't look together.

The kids are a part of my organization process as well. We have a 5 minute routine at the end of the day before we head out the door. It's one less thing I have to worry about... what, with all the grading and documenting and...

So here are my thoughts - a series of post on organization.

I've thought of doing this before, but haven't taken the time to bring all my thoughts together and put it into a post. This will be extreme motivation to get my bedroom back in order and start fresh.

I'm going to post how I try to stay organized (but not in my classroom because that is most likely not interesting to anyone else, but me) in lots of different areas; closet, shoes, bathroom, jewelry, car, purse and anything else that I think of.

What is the one area of your life/house that you know could use some help?

This should be way fun!!! Not just fun.... way fun!

(I might be the most excited about this... and i'm okay with that! Atleast, I'll get things under control again.)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Flashback Fotos - OBU

We are going to OBU this weekend for homecoming and i'm so excited!! That school will forever hold a special place in my heart and feel like home. Although my time there was short and full of some not so fun things, the Lord has been good. I feel blessed to be able to go back to visit and enjoy my days there despite what went on. So in lieu of homecoming weekend, here are some photos... back in the days before I owned a camera. sad. face.

My best friend and suite-mate, Megan, who I instantly clicked with the moment we met.
Funny Fact : her and her mom walked through the bathroom to introduce themselves to us on move in day and when our moms made eye contact they both gasped and said each others names. Long story short, they went to high school together and were very familiar with each other. Megan's grandmother even lives in my hometown.

We had the same name, both got a perm the summer before coming to college (don't ask) and soon discovered many other ways that we were alike. She is still considered one of my best friends today. I cherish her friendship more than she will ever know; not sure I would have made it through my first year without her being there.

Megans' room mate and my other suite-mate, Kenley. She is smart! haha. She was always studying science things and spent many hours in the lab.

I had the pleasure of singing in Megan's wedding the summer of 09 and now we are blessed to live within an hour of each other! :) Yay! Truly a friendship sent from God. Do you have any of those?

Suite friends reunited after 3 years! That's entirely too long. Just sayin'. We need to fix that.

Mom, Meg, and I on her special day.....
okay, back to OBU...

I was studying music (vocal performance) and this was my studio group. That basically means that we all had the same voice teacher and got together once a week to sing in front of each other, bond, and critique.

Did you know I was in an opera (at the school)?
Pretty sure I blocked it from my memory.
This is Tara, another suite-mate from my time at OBU and a fellow music major.

Those costumes and these photos are tragic. My gracious. Jenna and I laughed each night when we had to put those hideous things on.

oh yeah, the time I decided to chop my hair off... glad I documented that.

My room mate, Lyndsey, and our friend Megan. She was a Junior who took us under her wing and invited us to all her get togethers.

Lyndsey and I at the Shane and Shane concert when they came to OBU our freshman year...

Hanging out at a friends house one evening.

Lyndsey and I are on the bottom row - this was the group of girls who lived on our hall our sophomore year.

Twirp Week - a week where the girl asks the guys on a date! A very fun tradition! This was clearly the formal/dance night.
(Megan, Brittany, myself, Summer)

Hanging out at the table!

The Humane Society in Arkadoo let you adopt a puppy for the day! We did this a few times and I just happened to find a picture of it. That was a fun memory!

And now fast forward, one of my childhood friends, Erin, is attending school at OBU and we go visit as often as we can. These are some sweet friends that i've met through her. We were also all bridesmaids in her wedding! Laura, on the end is the one who I click with the best simply because we both like clothes and shoes and neutrals and yeah :) , but I can't wait to see them all this weekend!

Wish I had more photos to share, but since I don't, how many Megan's were in this post?


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Prayer vs. Pity

I know you are probably tired of hearing about how drained I am, but this is in a sense my journal, and I want to document this year; the good, the bad, the ugly.

Please know that I do not want pity, but I do want and cherish any prayers that you utter on my behalf, my students, or our school.

After a day off you would think I was refreshed, full of energy, and ready to go, but really no... not much of that. It just seems like every meeting we go to they ask something more of us and i'm not real sure how much more I have left to give. I'm stretched in every direction and I can feel it in every area of my life.

A perfect day for me would look like this -
wake up, shower, spend some time with the Lord, get ready (make up and all.... no more pony tails), watch the news, and then get to school with atleast thirty minutes to get myself prepared for my students arrival. In the evenings I would like to leave school at a decent hour, eat supper with my family, enjoy some time doing nothing work like, workout/run and then get in the bed by ten.

This is my day right now -
wake up at 5:30 sometimes 6 because I can feel that my whole being needs rest, shower, make up (1/4 of the days no time for mascara), hair (which 3/4 of the times ends up in a pony tail or very tragically rushed through), get dressed, make it to school by 7:25 and have twenty minutes to gather myself before my kids get there at 7:45. I spend my conference doing the loads of things that i'm required and expected to do whether it be documentation, conferences, meetings, etc.. and then rush to get back to my room before my kids return. Lunch is often spent in my classroom making sure that my afternoon is completely ready and planned for. Once the students are gone and all my "after school duties" are done, i'm pooped, but try to keep pushing to get ready for the next day. I often leave the school between 6-7 which means that I eat supper alone because my family has already finished. I sit down and try to enjoy some time with the Lord with the many things on my to do list fighting for my attention. After that I spend a little while on the computer and then get back to grading papers and finishing everything that wasn't done already... it's never ending. Finally, I make myself stop and usually get in bed between 11 and 12.

This is wearing me out.

I know that I need rest and so I choose to forfeit my make-up and hair in order to catch a few more minutes of sleep. There are bigger fish to fry.

What is often in my mind is how aware I am of the enemy using this against me.

Not only does he like for us to be consumed and busy so that we can't rest (mentally, emotionally, spiritually...), but he also tries to suck out the energy and joy where we know we are supposed to be planted.

I might not know a lot, but I know this is where God has me. To come from where I was in May of 2009 to here in a few shorts months... it can ONLY be a God thing. He is so so so good.

But I need your prayers.

The enemy may not be the situation, but no doubt he will try to use it in our weakest moment.

Satan stole my joy and all four years of my college and I refuse to let him have this time in my life. This is one of the hardest, most challenging things i've ever had to do (on my own) and he will not win.

So I ask for your prayers. please. Because I cannot fight alone.

The Lord took me through last year for a reason, and i'm beginning to see some of that now. He taught me how to fight. My head is full of lies a lot of times, lies that satan would love me for to coward down and believe, and sometimes they are very convincing... but God showed me how to take that anxiety and speak Truth into it.

I know that in the future, whether it be in marriage or any other area of my life, the enemy will fill my head with doubts and lies. And when that time comes I pray that I remember this time in my life - when God prepared my arms for all that they would hold, strengthened me, and taught me how to win the battle through His truth.

What lies are you believing? You may even be guilty. But speak His truth into those places of your life and mind..... the Truth sets you free.

You are not worthless. You are not incapable (because of Who is on your side). And you don't have to be afraid or anxious. I know those are frequent things he uses... instead of believing them, speak scripture OUTLOUD and choose to believe His truth. It may take time, but He is on your side and will come through. Singing the name of Jesus helps me too - because there is power in His name. Believe it.

Again, thank you for your prayers. I felt so many of them today - that's another post. My God is good and i'm choosing to press on. I simply know that I cannot do it alone.

Maybe that's another journey He is taking me through this year - continuing to fully rely and depend on Him. No matter the load in front of me.

God, you are so amazing! I wasn't sure that I was going to make it through this day when I arrived at work this morning, but You heard my prayers and showed up. Praise Your name. May I never forget or miss all that You are trying to teach me this year. Keep me aware of where I need to grow and change... and fix my eyes and heart on You. I know that I am not perfect and I know that I don't always do what is right or please You. But oh how I thank You for your love, gracy, and mercy. I don't ever want to become so busy that I push you out or that I embrace the negative instead of choosing to focus on the positive. Change my heart in all the ways that I know need to be changed. Keep me restful, sustain me with Your strong hand, and fill me with all things You. I want You. I want Your fullness. I want Your joy. I want You to do abundantly more than I could ever think or ask in my life.... for Your glory! Make my heart a heart after Yours.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Pop Quiz!!!

Let's see how well you know me...

What is (one of) my favorite thing(s) about the Fall season?

Do you remember my How to Tie a Scarf 101 post from last year?

Well, if you weren't with us then let me tell you... I love me some scarfs!

I'm one of those people who is cold all the time and so a scarf is perfect for me! I can wear it all day to not only keep me warm, but also as an accessory to step up my outfit. I'm not real big into jewelry simply because most of the time I get annoyed with it half-way through my day and there just is no point wasting time in the morning to only battle it throughout the day.

If you are equally as annoyed with things banging against your desk as you type and/or write then the scarf might be a nice touch for you! There are many ways to tie a scarf, so if you don't want it for warmth then you can change it up just for the look!!

I also like it because i'm really into plain, nuetral outfits and so if I add a scarf it adds color and pop to my outfit!!

All of that said, I don't typically post about clothing, but I found this chick on ETSY who makes this really cute scarflette and I just had to share the link with you.

Definitely want to get one of those!

This fringe scarf is super cute as well! It would work really well as an accessory.

So there you go! I'm not real excited about the cold Fall and Winter weather that is about to start coming in, but i'm totally pumped that I get to start pulling out my scarfs again!

What is your favorite thing about Fall?

Friday, October 15, 2010

Rewind Three Months

It's been 3 months since our summer vacation to the Carolina's and i've yet to finish blogging about our days spent there.

You saw enough beach photos - and I think you get the gist of what a day looks like there! So let's move on...

We headed up North and arrived in Asheville on Wednesday evening. It was a nice change from flat beachy shores to beautiful mountains. Not that I don't like the beach, because you know sun is like my favorite! Mountains are just beautiful. end. of. story.

Thursday we had tickets to tour the Biltmore Mansion and oh my gracious... it was so neat!

You aren't allowed to take pictures inside, but that's okay because really all I wanted to do was spend 10 hours in the garden photographing their amazing flowers. Not just one garden - multiple gardens.

Here are some of the highlight photos!

I needed to show you guys back at home how incredibly large the windows were. But are they not gorgeous? This was leading out onto the side patio towards one of the gardens.

The patio with this view.

The walkway leading down towards the gardens.

Of course, we all had to stop for a photo.

Oh, and Rod and his family just so happened to be there on the exact same day! Small world.

And now the gardens....

And grapes over head... that we may or may not have eaten.

And these gorgeous yellow flowers!

They were my favorite simply because there were so many of them!

This picture really does not capture the massiveness of this flower.
Compare it to the yellow flowers in the previous pictures and in the left side of this picture as well. It, no joke, was the size of my head. If only i'd thought to put my hand (or head) next to it when I took it. arg.

Not sure why I like this picture so much, i'm not a pink girl, but it's one of my favorites!

I'm not a fan of these, but mom loves them.
Therefore, I was told to snap a picture and I always do what i'm told.

The gigantic greenhouse. I didn't actually go in there... I was more fascinated with all the color and not just green so I stayed out in the garden while the rest of the group went in there.

Family Foto in front of the bass pond.

And the end.