Thursday, November 29, 2012

Oh Snap Recap

Oh snap! I got caught up in the craziness that was Thanksgiving and completely neglected the blog.  Here's a recap of last week:

Tuesday: We had our annual "Pre-K Feast"!  We usually have the feast at the school, in our classrooms.  This year though, both Pre-K classes are larger than before and we have seen tremendous parent/family involvement, so we decided to have the feast at the "Yegua Center" just down the road.  My teaching partner Kaylee and I got everything set up, I cooked two turkeys (yes that's right, ME), and we had assigned a side dish/dessert/etc to each of our students to bring.  I am always nervous about these things because you never know if people are going to bail on you and not bring something or bring something crazy (like being assigned to bring corn and sending the kid with an actual can of corn, no dish, no utsensil, just a can...).  Luckily though (almost) everyone brought what they were supposed to and everything turned out fantastic!  We had around 65+ family members show up, and that doesn't include the 32 students we have, ourselves, or our aide.  We were overwhelmed by the turnout and are so thankful for our students and their families!

Poor turkeys.

Christopher was basting all night long.

Look at all those people!

That's what was left of my scrumptious birds!

The kids were passed out after all of the fun!

Thursday: We had Thanksgiving at Christopher's Granny's house and it was de-waitforit-licious!  I love her mashed potatoes and gravy.  Like seriously I would drink the gravy straight from the container if it were socially acceptable.  And shovel in some potatoes between gulps.  I didn't do that though, sorry to disappoint!  I was actually very good!  After lunch we went back home and after a few rounds of fighting and tears between the kids, Christopher came up with a bracket for us to have a "Wii Turkey Bowl".  Guess who the champion was....

Winner winner chicken dinner!

That's right, this girl!  I have no shame in beating a bunch of little kids and a dude who's a foot taller than me (although that has nothing to do with Wii Bowling...)!

I also decided randomly that I was going to partake in a little Black Friday shopping (it was Thursday but idk wtf that is called...).  The boys want/need new bigger bikes and they had some at Wally World for $39.  I convinced Christopher's sister to join me and we made our way to WW at 7:30 p.m.  It was shockingly calm when we arrived.  I didn't even know what to do.  I was a little nervous that it was so quiet, thinking it was like the calm before the storm.  I was somewhat right.  We found the bikes I wanted, camped out next to them, made friends with the ladies around us who also wanted bikes, and when the time came, worked as a team passing bikes to our new "friends".  It worked out quite nicely.  I had in my basket what I was there for by 8:01 p.m.  Of course we got stuck in the current of crazies trying to get to a few other things, but overall it wasn't a bad experience.  I'll probably never do it again, at least not at any of the midnight or 5 a.m. sales.  But I'm glad I got the bikes and a few other goodies!  And glad Jennifer and I didn't have to use that taser gun we took with us just kidding kinda

Well I almost did because some crazy little old man decided he was done shopping and wanted to turn himself and his cart around, in the middle of an aisle full of people wanting towels, and dude just backed all up into my junk, stepped on my toes, and rammed people til he got where he wanted.  "I will hit an old man in public!!"  And we can't forget that when Jennifer and I were in the car about to leave, I looked back and saw that a young girl (that we had just talked about for smoking and blowing smoke right into her baby carrier) had turned around while talking on her cellphone and didn't notice that her basket (along with her baby) was rolling down the parking lot!  Jennifer was about to get out and yell at her but she thankfully turned back and noticed what was going down.  That is why people should not be allowed to have children unless they pass multiples tests.  I don't have a lot of room to judge folks on their behavior, but I really felt like some of those people needed to go home and reevaluate their lives after the way they acted while shopping.  Just sayin'.  I'll reevaluate mine too just to be nice.

Friday: Did some more shopping.  Went to dinner with my love (where he convinced our waiter to look away as I snatched the cute drink mixer our margaritas had been in).  And went home to drink some Pumpkin Beer (so very good) and watch, well, "The Watch".  It was pretty dumb, but there was a hilarious part in there that still makes me laugh just thinking about it.  If youtube wasn't blocked at work I'd share the video!  Maybe later when I get home... "Look at him, and understand me!"

You must try.  Don't be skeered.
Saturday: Lazy. All. Day. Long.  I woke up, watched two Hallmark movies, and then began the football watching.  My Aggies of course did their thang and BTHO Mizzou.  I made some pretty awesome mushrooms.  Annnnd....that was about it.  I will post my mushroom recipe sometime this week!  Along with my Pumpkin Pie Mini Cheesecake recipe!

I hope you all had a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving as well!  Cheers to an upcoming crazy December and lots of Christmas fun!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Just. Keep. Going.

I did it!  I survived our insane weekend of two family Thanksgivings, a birthday party, and that's right, the 5K!!  I'm not gonna lie, I had my doubts.  Saturday morning was crazy busy and by the time we arrived at my Dad's, I was ready for a nap.  Then we ate (moderately) and watched some Aggie football, still tired.  Dropped the boys off at the birthday party, yawning nonstop.  Waiting around for the race to start, ready to lay down in th parking lot and snooze.  I was feeling nervous the first part of the day thinking about the race.  But the thing about the 5K being so late was that by the time it started, any nervousness I had had disappeared and turned into 'let's just do this thing already!!'!  So when 5:40 rolled around I was ready to go.  I started strong, and ended strong.  I did some walking, but I ran more than I walked, and I was really surprised at myself.  As I said before, I didn't set a "goal time" to finish by.  I didn't want to put that kind of pressure on myself this first go round.  And...I finished in 37 minutes!  That might sound crazy long to some of you, but I am pretty proud of that tme.  And that includes some of the lingering that I did once I got into Santa's Wonderland and became mesmerized by the lights.  :)

Getting closer to Santa's Wonderland; almost done with mile 2!

The entrance to the last 1.2 miles of the race!

When I did the Armadillo Dash in March of 2011, my time was around 33 minutes.  And that was at a point when I had been training HARD for two months and weighed about 135 lbs.  So, considering my weight now, considering that I hadn't been training as hard as I should have been, I think that 37 was a damn good time.  There were a couple of times when the cold got to me and my chest was hurting.  A couple of times when my legs wanted to give out.  Many times when I was about to stop and kick a little kid who kept getting in front of me and then stopping to tie her shoe.  But I kept telling myself: Just. Keep. Going.  It would have been really easy to just walk the rest of the way, or simply give up.  But I had to Just. Keep. Going.  It would have been really easy to stop, grab some cookies and hot chocolate, and sit on Santa's lap instead of finishing the race.  But that's not me (although that probably would have made for a more interesting story...) and I had to Just. Keep. Going.  I wasn't about to let myself down, or let any of you guys down!  Christopher was there and I certainly didn't want to let him down.  Nor did I want to disappoint these two awesome ladies who read the blog and who also did the race!  Crossing that finish line was one of the best feelings I've had in a long time.  I was overwhelmed, proud, encouraged, and tired as hell.

After it was over I was all jacked up and ready to sign up for another 5K!  But then I came back to reality and made myself calm the eff down.  I believe the Armadillo Dash will be in March again in 2013, so that will probably be my next 5K.  I feel good about the progress I am making, and am looking forward to even greater results in the near future! 

I don't care that it's not even Thanksgiving yet...I love Christmas lights!

And yes I am sporting my race t-shirt today!

Thanks to all of you who have been following me on my journey to a better and healthier me.  I appreciate the support and encouragement you all give me more than you will ever know!  Keep holding me accountable ladies (and possibly gentlemen)! 

P.S. Look at this super fun Christmas cup that my Secret Pal gave me!  It's got a snowglobe inside of it yall, a freakin' snowglobe!!  Well done Secret Pal, well done!

Merry Holidays to you!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Don't happy!

So yall know how I said that Kutter has always been a "Mama's Boy"?  Well, lately, things seem to have gotten worse.  He has been getting very emotional about things and it is tearing me up inside!  Here are some examples of situations in which he has gotten extremely upset just in the past few weeks...

At Homecoming, the night he was so looking forward to, he had a meltdown 30 minutes prior to walking out onto the field.  All of the dukes and duchesses were to sit in a certain spot and then walk to their starting point on the football field.  I was trying to get Kason to his dad or any relative so I could get back to the field and take a bazillion pictures of the cuties.  As soon as Kutter saw that I was going to walk away for a few minutes (he was surrounded by adults he knew and his peers/friends), he jumped out of the stands, latched onto me, and was in tears.  I was afraid I was going to have to be the oversized Kindergarten Duchess if he didn't let go of me before he had to walk on the field.  I finally assured him that I would be waiting for him as he walked off, got him calmed down, and everything was fine after that.  Same thing happened the next day at the parade.  He would not ride the float without me.  Luckily I was the one in charge of the float to begin with so it made sense for me to ride...but damn it was 40 degrees and I would have much rather been somewhere warmer watching the parade!

A week later we were at their friend's birthday party at Power Sports.  They played the entire time and barely knew I was there except when I tried to make them freeze in the middle of a flip so I could take a picture.  Once they went into the big room to eat pizza and cake, Christopher and I slipped upstairs to do the dirty  to watch the beginning of the Aggie game.  When they were done with eating they went back out to play and we could see through the upstairs spy windows that they were happily playing.  I assumed everything was fine.  On the way home though, I learned that when Kutter saw that I was no longer in the big room, he got really upset.  I felt like the worst mom in the entire world!  I knew I should have gone and checked on them (but I didn't because it was seriously no more than 15 minutes) and it made me so sad that he got upset and I wasn't there.

At school lately, he has been wanting to stay with me in the mornings instead of going to breakfast and stay with me in the afternoons instead of going to ACE or to Nanny's on the bus.  He says it's because he misses me.  How do I say no to that??  We constantly talk about how lucky we are that I work at the same school that they attend and we get to see each other all of the time, but it doesn't seem to be enough.

Today our school was serving "Thanksgiving Lunch" in the cafeteria and I was able to steal my boys away from their class a few minutes early so we could eat together.  I thought it was a good idea!  My lunch and their lunch have a 15 minute difference, so I had planned to just bring them back to class with me until their class was finished.  Kason was afraid if they came with me they might miss their class going to play outside (whether they actually do that I do not know).  He decided he was going to stay in the cafeteria and wait.  Kutter began to cry.  What now??  He was upset because he said he already told me that he would come to my class.  And he was afraid if he chose to stay in the cafeteria that I would be sad.  Did you hear my heart shatter into a thousand pieces?  He is only 6 years old, he shouldn't be worried about me!  There was also an incident this morning when we got to school, I won't get into it, but both of my boys ended up in tears, I was not a happy Mama, so that didn't help that we were overly sensitive from the a.m.!

Tomorrow we have a super busy day.  We have Thanksgiving at my Dad's at lunchtime, dropping the boys off at the movies at 4:15 for a birthday party, and then Christopher and I are heading to our 5K at 5 p.m.  Well that second part may or may not happen because as soon as Kutter learned that I would not be staying at the movies with them, he broke down.  I. Am. Torn.  Do I know that he will be just fine?  Yes.  Do I know that even if was able to stay that he would not even notice my presence because he'll be having so much fun with his brother and friends?  Absolutely.  But yet here I am feeling like a terrible mama because I  won't be there for him.

I just don't know what to do to make him feel better in any of these situations.  I don't know what I ever did to make him so afraid of me leaving.  I worry that I somehow scarred him because of the divorce.  I also know that when I was little, I was the same exact way.  My parents divorced when I was very young.  I remember every other Friday when it was time for me to go to my Dad's I would be nervous and upset the days leading up to Friday.  I would cry all day Friday and beg not to go.  Not because I didn't want to see my Daddy, I loved him dearly and have always been a huge Daddy's girl.  But, I worried about my Mom.  I was scared she would be sad without me.  I assumed her entire world revolved around me and that if I was gone, she wouldn't be able to function.  But everytime I went to my Dad's, *shocker* my Mama survived the weekend without me!  Then Sunday rolled around and it would be time to go home.  And every other Sunday on the ride home, right around the point when we crossed the Brazos River, I would get upset.  I had spent all weekend with my loving Daddy and seen how happy he was (clearly because of me) and I began to worry about how sad he must be to have to drop me off and go days and days without me.  I was just a little girl, I shouldn't have been worried about such things.  And it was at no fault of my parents that I felt that way.  They never did anything to make me feel sad or like I was hurting either one of them.  It's just the way I was.  And you know what?  I didn't stop feeling that way until after I graduated from HS and no longer did the "every other weekend" thing between my parents.  I'm messed up, I know.

I wonder if chronic worrying is a real thing...and if it genetic?  Because the more I think about Kutter and the more I see how worried and upset he gets about things, the more afraid I am that I have passed this horrible thing on to my child!  Luckily he doesn't do the same thing when he has to go to his Dad's (at least not that I am aware of).  He does occassionally ask about my weekend plans while they are going to be gone, and he likes to know that Christopher is taking care of me in his absence :) but he never seems to get upset the way I used to.  I guess that's a plus, I don't really know.  I wish I had the answers.  If you have them, you damn well better let me know ASAP!  The kid has had me on a roller coaster ride today already so please hope and pray that tomorrow goes smoothly!  I need my heart in good condition for the 5K!!

Happy Flippin' Friday!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Get the FUNK out

Guess what's coming up in 4 mother-flippin' days? That darn 5K that some crazy person signed me up for! When I find out who he/she is, I'm going to beat their ass. Which of course means I'm gonna have to whoop my own ass. Which just made me think of this hilarious video. You already know I'm ADD so don't act surprised.  Watch it and then read on.

I've been in a funk lately. Not just an eating badly or workout funk like I've spoken of before. Just a funk that embodies everything in my everyday life. I'm usually not one to get upset over things that happen in the work place (and no I don't mean 4 year old drama), but lately it seems like I can't escape the nonsense, and it follows me home. There isn't anything that is going on with me personally, but when shitty things are happening to my friends and co-workers, and I constantly have to hear about it and see the wrong that is being done, it starts to feel personal. It's starting to take it's toll, not just on me, but everyone. I'm ready for it to stop. And that's all I'm going to say about that! The other funkiness I've been experiencing is just being burnt out. The entire month of October seemed to swallow me whole. And now that it's done with me, I feel like it's spit me back up and left me to deal with the rest of 2012 in a big slobbery mess. Ok that sounds gross. But it's a good analogy so bite me. Between everything I had to do for Kutter's Homecoming Duke duties and having K&K's birthday party the same day as the parade, and then Halloween just a few days later...I was spent; physically and emotionally. I'd do it again in a heartbeat FOR MY KIDS, but Lord please don't make me anytime soon.

I did slack off on the working out for about two weeks, and I didn't eat "great". But, I didn't do AWFUL like I could have and I didn't let my slacking keep me from getting back on track as soon as October ended and my obligations lessened. I've lost 2 more lbs, which is exciting. I know it could have been more, but I can't dwell on that. I'm not anywhere near ready for the 5K on Saturday. But I had also decided that my goal for this first 5K was going to be to just FINISH without crawling. I didn't set a time for myself because I knew it wouldn't be realistic at this point in my journey. I do plan on doing another 5K probably in March, and at that point I should be ready to set a goal time. But as for Saturday, I plan to run/jog what I can, enjoy the amazing Christmas lights, and finish with a smile. Did I mention we also have Thanksgiving at my Dad's Saturday before the race? Maybe I should add "not barf" to my goal this go round...

P.S. How great is this weather??  I think I'm ready for some hot apple cider (possibly spiked), my kindle and a bubble bath...tingle.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Put a Pin in it

Am I the only one who spends a ridiculous amount of time on pinterest, pinning everything from recipes to remedies, and then finds themselves overwhelmed?  Well, it happens to me daily, and I'm going to pretend it happens to you too so I don't seem so crazy.  I get the most overwhelmed when it comes to the pins that are related to home decorating and projects for pre-k.  I have so many adorable pins that I don't know where to begin!  Have you seen all of the cute shit out there for Fall/Halloween/Thanksgiving?  They are so precious, but there's no way in hell I will ever be able to do them all.  Especially with 17 kids in my class!  I would end up hot gluing my eyeballs shut or their mouths shut before it was all said and done.  And as for decorating my house...that just gets put on the back burner.  I got my one and only fall wreath project done, and that's probably all that I will accomplish for Fall 2012!
There are a few things that I pinned for my classroom that I have managed to complete, so I wanted to share them.  We haven't gotten to many of the fall ones yet, because everytime I try to decide which ones I want to do I have mini panic attacks, so don't expect to see a lot of that theme just yet.  Some of the below pics are crafts, some activities, and some just random decorations since school started.  P.S. As soon as I can get the correct links to where some of the pins/ideas came from, I will put them up!  Technology is currently not working in my favor...

First we have my bulletin board cupcake.  Our school theme this year is "A Sweet Place To Learn".  I got the background, which is cupcake wrapping paper, from Walmart.  The border is from a teacher store I don't know the name of.  And the cupcake I made out of bb paper and tissue paper.  Easy enough!  I had seen some bulletin boards via pinterest that had similar ideas making ice cream sundaes, so I tweaked it to fit my needs.

Super cute picture idea for the first day of school!  I had an old picture frame, sticky-tacked some pre-cut letters I had, and that was all she wrote.  I took pictures of all of the kids and had them printed.  I sent one copy home and had one copy on our bulletin board at the beginning of the year.

The next few are pictures of "discovery bottles" I have made.  You can use ANYTHING to make these.  I have several more I am working on, but here is what the kids have been playing with so far.

This one is a gatorade bottle; dyed rice; and random letters I found.  The kids love the sound that the rice makes, as well as identifying the letters that peek through.  HOT GLUE THE LID ONTO THE BOTTLE WHEN YOU ARE FINISHED, NO MATTER WHAT KIND OF BOTTLE YOU ARE MAKING.

 This is a "shape" discovery bottle (used from an old Sweet Tea Vodka bottle--don't judge, it was a cute bottle!).  I used small foam shapes, wiggly eyes, and random other tiny shape objects I found in my classroom.

 This one is just fun!  Inside is water, regular pompoms, sparkly pompoms, beads, cut up ribbon, and other tidbits from our "arts and crafts" center that would fit.  The girls love this one.

Letter "S" bottle.  We were focusing on letter "S" one week so I found things that started with "S" to put in the bottle.  There is a snake, a seashell, different sized "S" cutouts, "S" beads, a sun, and a sunflower.  Another favorite of the kiddos.

Downfall of using the sunflower was that the tiny black pieces from the center of the flower came out and were floating all over the bottle.  It doesn't bother the kids, but it bugs the crap out of me!

Whoever thought of using a hairdryer to melt crayons and watch as they splatter across a canvas to make "art" was pure genius, and also extremely bored at some point.  My class loved this activity.  All you need is a poster board, cardboard, or just some heavy form of paper, crayons, hot glue gun to glue the crayons, and a hair dryer.

These are felt jack-o-lanterns.  I cut out the pumpkins, stems, leaves, and different size/shape face pieces all out of felt.  I put them in a bag and the kiddos were able to create their own jack-o-lantern during centers.  I'm considering making a turkey for Thanksgiving and I plan to make ornaments and trees for Christmas. 

In Pre-K we focus a lot on fine motor skills.  We also have different worksheets/activities that require the children to use scissors.  So, as a way to introduce them to the correct way to hold the scissors and practice cutting, I made this "cutting tub".  I put scrap pieces of construction paper, tissue paper, cardboard, ribbon, kleenex, fabric and scissors in the tub.  The students can attempt to cut out a specific shape, or simply practice cutting.  Now that we have been in school longer and they are more developed, I have added dotted lines for them to practice cutting, as well as other papers with a specifc shape/line pattern to cut out.  It's great practice and keeps them busy.

One of the only fall related crafts we have gotten to so far!  We made fall trees using paint and Q-tips.  The kids thought I was crazy at first, "Those goes in yo ear Ms. Robot, not paint!!"  They finally trusted me though and we had some pretty cute fall trees to adorn our classroom.

And a mommy pinterest find.  All you need is shaving cream, food coloring, cups, paintbrush(es), a bathtub, and an eager child.  It's pretty self explanatory once you get it all mixed up.  The food coloring did not stain the walls, tub, or children.  They had a blast and I had to start draining the tub with them still in it to get them out.  I can't find the pictures, but we have also played with glowsticks in the bathtub as well.  They weren't as crazy about that as the paint, mostly because they said being in the water in the dark freaked them out (don't worry, it wasn't pitch black or anything, there was light from the window and a small light in the bathroom on, I'm not that mean!).  Still a fun idea to try though!

I have a lot more "in progress" crafts and activities I will post about once they are complete!  I'm going to try and get some Thanksgiving things done in the next couple of weeks...if I don't go crazy first.  Or, if I am unable to get Thanksgiving done, I will just start planning all of my Christmas projects now :)  Either way, I'll have plenty of fun ideas for you all very soon!

Happy Mutha-Effin-Monday!