Thursday, December 06, 2012

Thankful Again

Today, I am once again thankful: For doctors, health care and the flexibility of my job so I can go see my doctor. I can have my fears assuaged and my ability to run restored, well, almost. My doctor said there weren't symptoms of a fracture, and after several questions and tests, he determined that I have a muscle issue with the muscle that wraps around the back of my hip/pelvis. He said it was likely irritated and swollen, pinching my sciatic nerve. He said continue to rest, 10-14 more days of NO running, but I am allowed to cross train ("anything that doesn't hurt"). Then after that time, start again, but start slowly. Stretching twice a day, to relieve that tightness and tension, were also prescribed. So, yes, some time off will do me good-although, the eating needs to reflect time off not continued snacking. ;) Thank you, Readers, for your advice and your concern and encouragement. You are truly appreciated! :)

Wednesday, December 05, 2012


It's funny the things we take for granted. The things we appreciate, and when. When my husband and I were first married, he didn't travel much for work. We had our first daughter when we were very young, and our second 3 1/2 years later. When our youngest was just a few months old, my husband went out of town on business. We weren't in a great part of town, so we didn't talk to neighbors much. They were much older than us, too. While he was away, in Boston for a week, both of our children-under 4 yrs old-got the flu. And we got a blizzard. As in snow shoveled from the driveway was car height. My husband would call to check in here and there, telling me how much fun he was having. I was so resentful. I didn't sleep-partly due to the girls' bouts with flu, partly because I wasn't sure how to sleep alone and I was on alert for the girls who needed me. We didn't have email, texting, cell phones with unlimited long distance. My in-laws came and sent me out to the store, to get fresh air and a few minute break, which was so nice. Over the last 18 years my husband hasn't gone on many business trips. Recently, however, he's gone on 5 or so. It's funny the differences. I have two daughters who are old enough to carry on real conversations, help with dinner, etc. I have friends and neighbors who are here in time of need, if any arise. I am a stronger person and am ok tackling everything on the list, and I am ok being alone. Maturity? Less sleep deprivation? We also have the ability to communicate in so many ways. But, it's funny, I don't need them now, like I used to. But, boy, am I happy when he arrives home! :) Interesting those changing seasons in life. I hope the season you are in is happy, Reader.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012


Blogging everyday in November? Ha! I'm never close. I need a "blog every day" in June or July, as if summer is any less busy. I'm kind of in a slump right now. Running, as regular readers know, is an outlet for me. It relieves my stress, helps me to think more clearly... it is my only form of exercise. It helps me to burn the calories I eat. And I can eat a lot. I should clarify, I can eat a lot of things that are bad for me. ;) Since my half marathon I have only gone out for a run a handful of times. I have a nagging injury. I have taken time off and tried again. Only to see it return after the first mile. I notice this pain quite often throughout the day. It has limited my running (and my sanity ;)) so much that I am seeing my sports med doctor tomorrow. It has bothered me at such odd times that I am seeing him during my teaching hours and getting a substitute. It's frustrating. I have worked very hard to build up to where I am now. However, in the scheme of things, it isn't a life threatening illness, a debilitating disease (I don't think...) So, I continue to be thankful for what I do have. My girls are doing great and, as envious as I am, my husband continues to progress with his weight loss goal and his running goals. Things are good, here. Fingers crossed that I receive good news at my appointment. I hope you are well, amidst this holiday season, Reader.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Winter is coming...

I saw this post on Lisa Russo's wonderful blog. We had such a mild winter here last year, I look forward to snow like this again (aren't her pictures wonderful? I always admire them, but we are working on saving money, so they are on my wish list-maybe we'll repaint the dining room and get some of these to hang up in the spring?) I grew up in Michigan, and we had snow almost all winter, until the robins came out signifying spring had sprung. I love snow, shoveling our driveway, watching the kids play... although they are so big now they rarely "play" in it... time by the fireplace, hot cocoa, sweaters. I love it all. I am really looking forward to it, and Lisa's lovely pictures encouraged that thinking! :)

Thankful 14

I am thankful that my husband is my dearest friend. He's been gone on business and I keep thinking I will tell him something that evening. He isn't here to tell. Our phone conversations are different this time, since he is three hours different. We are saying nightly prayers when he is getting ready for dinner, for example. During the evening hours, when we normally catch up on our days, I think of what I want to say to him and he is working. Morning hours, he isn't up yet. And then I am off to teach. I know, for the women who have husbands who are gone often, they must think me silly. I got married to my husband young, and we had children young, separating us from our peers. We lived in a state away from family, so we learned to do things without help, or with each other's help. He has rarely had to travel for business and, well, they don't pay teachers to travel, so I'm not gone often...ever. :) I'm lucky we enjoy each other's company. :) I'm grateful for it.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Grateful 13

On this November 13, I'm grateful for sleep. When my husband is away on business I don't fall asleep or stay asleep. I am the only pair of ears listening for the girls in that rare event that they need me. The dogs wandering, prowling, checking on us all, is a sound that normally doesn't bother me, but on nights I'm alone, I hear every toenail clack, every collar jingle. The first night I'm alone, I think that I'm going to go to bed early, catch up on rest! But, then I wake up 5 times and never really settle in to a good, deep, long-lasting sleep. The second night I stay up way too late, hoping this will help me stay asleep. It doesn't. Then I wake up and have gotten even less sleep. The husband isn't usually gone on any trips, and if he does, they aren't usually longer than a day or two. I'm thankful for deep sleep, when he is here. It's funny, as I read this, that I am such a creature of habit. It's not just having husband here, it's my routines that I like. I don't sleep well at other people's houses or hotels, either. :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

November 12, 2012

My gratitude posts have fallen behind. I finished the last one on November 6, Election Day. Since then, I missed a few. I am thankful for: 7-Dinner with friends-we had a family over for chicken quesadillas and we all enjoyed our evening! I was also thankful our youngest daughter didn't have basketball practice so she could enjoy the evening dinner with us, as well. 8-I'm grateful that we can eat out sometimes. During the day on the 8th, I met with a friend. I'm going to be doing some part time work for a small business and I met with a friend to get me started on the information last week. After we worked for a few hours, we met my husband for a dinner out. It was a nice afternoon/evening. 9-I am thankful I can run. I had a nice day for running, with beautiful weather and I was well worn out. 10-I'm grateful for family get togethers. We got together with my husband's family and had our own version of Chopped. Our ingredients in our bag were apples, mustard greens, pork belly and matzo ball soup. 11-I'm thankful for our Veterans. So grateful for those who are willing to put their lives on the line for me, and my freedom. My Grandpa Red was a veteran in WWII. He had stories I wish I had listened to more carefully. I miss him, dearly. 12-Today I am thankful for my job. I have the opportunity to teach children about history and, though they may not always appreciate it, I think they are learning. ;) What have you been thankful for? I hope all is well where you are, Reader.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Election Day 2012

I am grateful for the opportunity to vote! Loved this article-wish everyone had this perspective.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Butternut squash soup

The other day my husband and I met for lunch. I had half a sandwich and some butternut soup. It was delicious, and had carrots in it, too, so I thought I'd try one of my own. I looked up a recipe and got the groceries to make it tonight. Then I saw a "butternut squash recipes" tweet by Whole Living. Some of these look wonderful! Thought I'd share. Are you trying any new recipes, Readers? Edited: Soup was delicious and filling. Would have been better with the nutmeg it called for, but turns out we didn't have any. Otherwise it was a very good recipe! Also, the recipe said it would take 25 minutes to roast the squash and it took closer to an hour.

November 5 2012

Didn't get to post yesterday. Busy weekend. We were supposed to run 12 miles yesterday, but didn't get that far. Both feeling injured and listened to our bodies. Was nice to have someone running with me to talk it out with. Normally it's a mental battle between the "I-Can-Do-It/Fight-Through-It" person and the "Ouch-This-Really-Hurts/Could-It-Be-An-Injury" selves. We decided, this close to race day (two weeks) to err on the side of caution. That, too, can be mentally defeating. I am grateful-grateful to have a running partner who cares about me and my well being, while knowing I am strong. We also spent time with our families, writing our Thankful Feather Letters! I am grateful for family and friends to send them to. :)

Saturday, November 03, 2012

5 Immunity boosting foods

I just read a blog post I need to note for future reference. It was 5 delicious, immune boosting foods. I can always tell when my system is feeling down, but I don't always know, besides food with vitamin c, what to help. I know to sleep, but wonder what to eat. Do you have anything you eat when you are feeling low?

November 3 2012

Thankful for my girls as always. Our oldest is down on a nearby college campus, staying overnight with a friend in the dorms and going to today's football game. Seems odd to not have her here. So thankful for texting: she knows I'm a worrier and checks in every now and then. My youngest daughter is across the street babysitting for our friends/neighbors. I sat with them for 2 hours earlier, while she was out to lunch with her grandparents. We crafted crowns and then played Sleeping Queens -which is a really fun card game for kids-in our crowns. When they were done with that we went out and drew fairies with chalk on the driveway. I'm grateful for good neighbors-we appreciate them so much, even more since a break in at our neighbor's house. My husband has spent the day working in the garage, making a good use of wall space for storage. I'm thankful he has energy to do such things and takes the time to, even though he has work he has to be doing.


Always love Kristin Armstrong's posts-her writing is wonderful-but the most recent "Regular Joy" really spoke to me. Regular readers know I have two daughters, one in high school and one in middle school, who run. I have run with them and loved it. I hope they continue to love running, even just for fun/exercise/etc. Our oldest uses it as stress relief. The night before school started, she was very stressed about the senior year beginning. She asked my husband if he wanted to jog up to the school (high school nearby) and run on the track. He did, they ran and then came home. She felt better and could sleep when her head hit the pillow. I love that about running.

Friday, November 02, 2012

Love this post!

After my complaints, ramblings and grumblings about the time-eating social media websites, I read Jenny Meyerson's post today and LOVED it-oh my goodness!! Love it! Totally what I need to do, less FB, Twitter, and iPhone apps and more of Him, more time scrapbooking my family memories and spending time with my girls who will soon be out of our nest!

November 2 2012

I just read Cathy Zielske's blog post. I agree...I have been reading articles today about people's homes and businesses being broken into, gas being siphoned out of their cars... Just the sucky side of people being displayed in an already awful situation... I am grateful for power, heat, a dry place to sleep, a neighborhood I can get around in without being knee deep in water, or worse. My heart goes out to the cities hit by Hurricane Sandy. See Cathy's post if you'd like to help. She has links that should be good guides. I hope you are dry, well and safe, Reader.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

November 1 2012

Gratitude Here in the United States we celebrate "Thanksgiving" in November. The reason for its celebration have evolved over the years. A good site that talks about it is here, and another, here. Recently it has become a focus on being thankful, grateful. So, I'm going to try {Note I said try, as sometimes I get too busy, once I proclaim a set blogging item} to blog something I am grateful for each day in November. Yes, I am most grateful for my family and that almost goes without posting or I shall post it daily... November 1, I am grateful for my family. I am also grateful for my big dog. Yes, he is a loyal companion, snuggles, etc. But today I was reminded of the little things like when he sneaks into my office just to lay beside my chair. Then, when I head down to the kitchen, he tries to keep his pace even with mine so he can have his head touching my hand. He really is very sweet. Then, when my husband comes in to my office to vacuum, our dog runs and hides behind me... some protector. ;) I do appreciate his presence when the girls have gone off to school and the husband has gone off to work. The house is quiet, yet I hear his snores and I do not feel alone.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Unfriending People

Yesterday I mentioned unfriending people on the internet. Tara Whitney tweeted a link to an interesting article about it. The article is short and caused me to pause. Hope you are having a good week, safe from Hurricane Sandy's aftermath!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


I find it so interesting to observe people's posts on Facebook/Twitter, etc. Today there were comments about what teenage girls were posting, how mean they were, etc. It's funny the tunnel vision people have, as in, their moms post the same sorts of things, and comments to each other. I've even removed one of these parents/ladies from my friend list. This mom who is commenting on why these girls say such mean things... Have you seen the political comments people post these days? It's not about being nice anywhere, anymore. It's the demand for people to see our perspectives or else. It's really frustrating. I've started posting only kindness quotes on Twitter and Facebook. I have started removing friends from Facebook for negativity-political or otherwise. I feel bad sometimes, but it's nice to log on and have something bring a smile to my face instead of making me cringe. My husband and I talk a lot about our tunnel vision. We see flaws in others, what do they see in us? We all have it. How do you teach that to today's youth to promote a generation of tolerance? The teens I see today have no such thing-well, the majority. I feel old as I read this post: "Kids these days" :) But, it is a societal shift away from compromise toward self-centeredness, a demand to be right. I learned in my high school government class that yes, we all have rights, but those stop when we step on the rights of others... but that isn't how we see it anymore, is it? Tolerance isn't just a "politically correct" frame of mind, it's a kind frame of mind... I'm sorry, I get frustrated and have considered logging off Facebook for a while, logging off social media. I'm sure I could get a lot more done. I won't see posts from family or pictures of their wonderful kids... but is it worth the sacrifice? I wonder if many people would? Thoughts, Reader? I hope you are well.

Running, 450th Post

Today is my 450th post. I hadn't noticed how many posts I had written over the years, but just recently saw the numbers on the blogger dashboard. Wow, 450 posts, usually about nothing significant. Only my day-to-day existence. Interesting how my little blog has linked me to some really wonderful ladies around the world! Now I read their blogs and keep up with their changing lives, as well. Running-yes, I'm still running. Husband and I are still training for our half marathon on November 18th. Our eleven miler this past weekend went well, even in the wind and rain. One more long run, this weekend, at twelve miles. Then we come back down to 5 and our race will be that next weekend, I think. This will be husband's first half marathon-he hasn't even run this distance since 2005. He's worked so hard to get back into shape, dropping 40 lbs since January! I'm jealous. He is already faster and stronger than I am, even though I've kept running for so long. I have lost ten pounds since the year began, as well, though, so I shouldn't complain. :) I am happy with my progress, and I'm getting faster. I'm happy my husband is working on being healthy, too! Hope you are well, today, Reader!

Monday, October 29, 2012


Little changes around here like **the weather. Last week was beautiful, sunny and in the 60s or 70s everyday. Today we have blustering winds, rain and a chill to the air. I know it's due to Hurricane Sandy's pending arrival to the midwest, but it feels as though winter is definitely upon us this year. Last year we had such a mild winter... **I changed my hair. I had been in a "growing it out" phase, where I envisioned myself with flowing blonde locks, styled in some sort of elegant fashion. Then reality hit: my hair is thin and fine-hair dressers call it "baby hair". Sigh. So I went back to my normal chin length haircut. I asked for "caramel" blonde and got a much lighter version. That's another change. My regular hair person from the last couple years changed salons. So, I tried, and found a new one. I like her but she only works 10-5 Tuesdays and Thursdays, sometimes Saturdays. Saturdays never work for me since our girls are so busy on the weekends and I am at work during the day. So, I went somewhere else when I should have waited. I fret the whole time, instead of relaxing. But, my hair looks ok for now. I am going to schedule ahead with someone this time! **I changed my phone. I had an older phone that had been replaced since it had problems. I didn't mind. I'm not usually a fan of change. ;) Well, I broke down and got an iPhone 5. It's really a nice phone. Just a few things different than my last phone that I don't love, but it is nice to have everything in one spot-phone, music, etc. **I'm trying to change my daily routine so I can get more done in the day. (Thus more blogging lately ;)) What are changes you are making, or hoping to make in the new year, Reader? Hope you are safe and dry, out of harm's way from the Hurricane!

Thursday, October 25, 2012


Today*We had conferences for our youngest daughter. They were "student-led" and she was wonderful. Her grades are great and she gets upset when she isn't perfect in everything, so we knew her academics were fine. Her teachers confirmed that she is a wonderful leader who speaks at the right times. I am so thankful. Today*Our oldest daughter reminded me how much I will miss her next year. She finished up two college applications last night. Today, with conferences, the youngest didn't have school, so our oldest came home on her school lunch time and took her out to lunch. I am reminded how lucky we are that they are so close. I am so thankful. Today*My running has been going well, times coming down, even as distance goes up, but my shins have been very painful, again, as of late. They are swollen and painful to the touch. I decided to pitch a walk or bike ride to my husband, and ended up suggesting we walk a mile or so to a local restaurant, eat and walk home. He agreed and we had such a lovely time. Still seems strange sometimes to go places like that without our girls and see our "empty nest" future. We had plenty to talk about and enjoyed our time together. I am so thankful. Today*My dog snores beside me. His health issues are getting more noticeable. His big fatty deposit lump is very large and he is getting skinnier, sleeping most of the day, now. My husband took him to the vet over the summer and she said she doesn't expect a year out of him, now. The lump can't be removed safely, and is taking his nutrients. He still doesn't display pain or discomfort, other than carrying around the heavy lump. The vet said that most dogs, when they become ill or decline like this, pull away from their families. Mine gets closer, not willing to leave my side, if I'm home, for moments. I am so thankful. {Our other dog gets older and more crotchety, but that's a story for a different day ;)} Today*Teaching went well. In the eighth grade I taught a lesson about the Acts during the late 1700s-Stamp Act, Navigation Acts, Townshend Acts, etc. I had a wonderful activity I had received from another teacher. The kids were active and engaged, they drew wonderful connections. I had them discuss the experience as well as their thoughts as a result, and they were excellent. I was a proud teacher-those moments can be rare sometimes, when you see their growth and enjoyment of history. I am so thankful. I don't know where I'm headed, where my days ahead will take me, but I do know today was a great day and I am so thankful for all the wonderful people and moments that today held. How was your day?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

October 23 2012

I have unpleasant tasks looming ahead. I have the daily tasks like laundry, but our oldest daughter has been helping out a lot with that. I have things to schedule like getting some fillings fixed. They are old, metal fillings that are pulling away from the tooth. I don't want to do that-the shots, the working in my mouth... but it needs to be done. I need to clean out the fishtanks, too. There was a good post I read this morning about "eating the frog" here. I am hoping to work on my daily and weekly schedules a bit so that I can get everything done during the week. I have, however, accomplished some things like grading papers and putting them into my computer grade book this morning. I met with another teacher this morning, as well, to pick his brain about ideas and teaching style. There is still so much I need to learn. He teaches U.S. history and has for about 15 years, so he has much to teach me! :) I am eager to learn so I can be a better teacher. What are you dreading or hoping to improve upon?

Monday, October 22, 2012

October 22 2012

More time has passed than I would care to admit. I have been swallowed into the social media abyss. Checking Facebook, Twitter, Google Reader and Instagram can be done in a matter of seconds on my phone, but add up those little bits of time and they turn into chunks that steal away my productivity and blog posting. My new phone makes it easier to check anywhere, anytime, which isn't good. My husband and I were discussing blogs. He suggested I create one about my history teaching with project ideas, topics I find fascinating, and teaching resources. I don't sit down to post enough, here, so would I post there? I'm not sure, but it would be fun to try. There are resources out there for middle school teachers, but it usually takes some digging to find them. Elementary sites pop up like crazy when searched for, however. I'd love to be creating an ongoing resource where other teachers could come find what they are looking for. My teaching is going well, still part time in the middle school social studies room. Currently, the sixth grade is learning about the Ancient Israelites, the seventh grade is learning about the Romans and the eighth grade is learning about the French and Indian War. We also will be having discussions about the elections (the process, etc, not who we would choose to have win the election, that would have everyone up in arms and disputing). We have an enrichment period at the end of the day for thirty minutes where all of the middle schoolers get together most days. Mondays are not set in stone, days like today when we have good weather we have fresh air fun, since those days are few and far between as we head into Midwestern winter. Tuesdays are study hall, Wednesdays are Newsbowl. Newsbowl is a variety of questions from current events and we play in our own classrooms as a competition, with each question assigned points. Thursday is a social savvy lesson as we are teaching teenages and most could learn a thing or two. ;) Fridays we meet with our "buddies" from younger grades and do an activity or we have a critical thinking project. Some Mondays or Fridays I have chosen a history topic to talk about, like November 12 we will have a Veteran in to talk about Veteran's Day and their military experiences. As for our family, both of our daughters are done with their cross country running seasons. Our oldest finished up her senior season on Saturday. I did fine throughout the season, but on the way home on Saturday I began to cry. My husband was unnerved, not recognizing the cause of my tears at first. We've been chasing her around cross country courses for six years! And now we are one quarter through with her senior school year. It's gone so fast. Our youngest had her last meet on Sunday. This was her first year running, so there weren't tears, but it is her last year in middle school, so that is also unnerving! I hope you are well. What is happening with you, Reader?

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Ah, August

It's been a long time, again. Summer has been busy! :) We kept a daughter of a friend of ours for three weeks this summer, for starters. I think I've mentioned how I like to make it like "summer camp" for her. It was fun! :) We have also visited another possible college choice, with a few more scheduled in the weeks to come. I have tried to meet my "read more" goal, reading Killing Lincoln, Gone Girl and am halfway through the Discovery of Witches. I didn't like Gone Girl, as much as most people I know have. Just too much for me. I have loved Witches very much, can't put it down, thus little blogging. ;) I cleaned out one side of our basement crawl spaces, leaving quite a large pile of trash for our garbage pick up and an organized set-up in its place. I still have more "organizing to-do's" ahead, like the other crawl space. It seems mundane, I know, but I feel better once it's done. I've convinced the husband that we needn't keep all the junk that lies down there! So, it will be finding its way out of here soon! I have been watching the Olympics, though not as much as I have in years past. We have also been watching Gilmore Girls-It's a series I have enjoyed so much over the years, first seeing several episodes on tv, then getting dvds and watching them all in order a few years ago. I wished my older daughter would watch and love them... and eventually she had seen a few. She enjoyed it, but now, as we start from dvd 1 of season 1, we three girls have watched and love it. My youngest daughter proves to be my partner in crime in that we memorize and remember points/lines and bring them up again later. Working on a list of things to blog through August...So glad you are reading and checking in on me. :) Hope you are well, Reader.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Hello, my long-lost friends. I know it has been ages and I apologize. Since I wrote last: *I attempted my third half marathon. I was hoping for a 1:45-1:50 time range. I ended with a 2:20, but can't look poorly upon it because I started getting sick at mile 4 and continued for quite a while, up to mile 8 or 10. I later found out I had the flu. Blech. I took time off to recover from the flu, and was down and out on Mother's Day. I was secluded in my room with no visitors so they didn't get the bug. Then that turned into respiratory yuckies. I finally got over that. *My girls finished their school year and are now going to be a senior and an eighth grader. Wow. We have begun the college search for the oldest, also. Again, Wow. *I finished my first year as a middle school social studies teacher. A busy year flew by and I worked hard. I'm excited to plan ahead this summer! I have bought a lesson plan/record book so I can begin penciling in information! *I also finished my second class so I could renew my teaching license. I got another A, but I also was swamped/overwhelmed and frantic for a while. :) I'm glad it's done! I gleaned a lot of information from both classes this year, but it was stressful trying to get it all done, while finishing up a school year of teaching, as well. *My family went to Alaska on a cruise. We started in Seattle, headed out on Princess Cruise line, went to Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Victoria, B.C, arriving back in Seattle a week later. It was beautiful! I will have to post a whole post about that soon! I promise not to wait so long, now, till my next post. :) Thank you for popping in!

Monday, April 16, 2012


My car has finally been returned since my "bang up job" on it. It was gone for 3 weeks and much money in repairs. I will appreciate my car so much more now that I had time without it. :) A few nice things helped me out: My in-laws were gone on a spring break vacation, so I borrowed one of their cars for a week. My daughter's car was available to be confiscated. ;) She didn't complain (to me ;)) and was generous in working out other ways to and from school. I know, we pay for the car and it's technically ours, but you remember that feeling-your first independence of having your car, and license, being able to get yourself places. It's frustrating when you're back to square one. Also, I had spring break from school last week, so I didn't really need to get very many places. It all worked out, and could have been much worse. (Let's see if I'm still saying that after our car insurance goes up. ;))

I took another break from the Potato Peel book, although it had been going along nicely. Laura Child's latest Tea Mystery book came out, and I love those books. Love them. I devoured it, as usual. :) My daughters have both read Heaven is For Real (I think I have mentioned that before) and suggested I read it. I hadn't been in the mood for it, but they asked again this week. I finished the Tea book and read the Heaven book-in one day. Loved it. I needed tissues. If you haven't read it, you should. :) I've been thinking about it every day since. :) My girls just grinned and said they knew I'd like it. :)

I've also started a new book: A Heart Like His by Beth Moore. A good way to get me back to Bible study with a purpose instead of "Bible Roulette" :) Two chapters in and I like it. :)

Storms are blowing in here. I already got my run in for the day. I was supposed to do 11 Saturday but ended up going 12! :) I was so happy. My 9 mile run a few weeks ago was great, but 10 two weeks ago was awful. Whenever you hit a bump like that so close to race day (about 3 weeks!) you get anxious. So, I ran with the plan of getting over the double digit hump and felt great! I felt great yesterday (my rest day), but oh, did those muscles protest on my run today! :) The sun was shining and the weather was warm, but you cold tell by the breeze moving in that it will be a stormy afternoon! {Maybe a nap will be in store on my last day of spring break? ;)}

Can't believe I have 35 school days left (my girls have even less!) Only 35. Eek! :) But so ready, I have enjoyed this spring break way too much. Thinking about putting my garden in (although we had frost last week, too, so I resisted!) I have it planned, now just to get past frost season, and put it in! :)

Obviously I have fallen out of my daily blog habit-the car incident threw me for sure. I'm still not sure how it happened... anyway, I have been trying to Bible read, still, and send out a note here or there, albeit not daily.

Well, that's all for today. Any plans the change in weather has you thinking about, like my sunny summer garden? :)
Have a great week!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

March 21, 2012

Still not a lot of news about my car. There was a preliminary assessment done today and it looks painful for my bank account. Humph. I'm not even sure how long it will take to be repaired. A while, by the sounds of it. We'll see when they begin to take it apart. It's frustrating, because that is what insurance is for, but it's also going up as it helps.

The weather has been unseasonably warm. I am resisting the urge to go out and plant things. March came in like a beautiful, sweet lamb, so it is most surely going out like a roaring, raving lion! Whether we'll get more frost, I'm not sure. The skunks don't seem to think so, and neither do the bluebirds.

The Potato Peel Society book is starting a bit slow, which is what I thought the last time I tried it, stopping on page nine, but this time I think I see a glimmer of potential. I will keep you posted.

I have heard owls in the woods behind my house for the first time since I have lived here (almost 12 years). I went out with a camera a few days ago, but I'm sure they heard me crashing around among the leaves, trying to avoid the large puddles. They didn't hoot anymore and I couldn't find them for pictures. I'm sure the neighbors wondered what on earth I was doing!

I have continued to write notes to people via facebook messages, but yesterday's was sad. My brother's beloved dog had died yesterday morning, so my note was to them, thinking of them and their sadness.

I hope you have been well, Reader!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

March 18, 2012 part 3

After this, my amount of posts will be back on track! :) They won't have all been on their correct days, but I could get to 31 posts in March. :)

We didn't have our traditional St. Patrick's Day corned beef and cabbage yesterday. I meant to pick it up on my way home Friday, but with all the car crashing excitement I didn't get to it. We just had leftovers, which was cheaper anyway, although not very Irish. :)

Yesterday, I saw this post by Lisa Leonard about being lucky and wanted to post something similar.

I am blessed and lucky:
*To have a wonderful husband and two truly terrific teen daughters
*To have a home I love, and a garden I can get my hands into-and a sunny day to get my hands dirty in the garden! {I spent some time yesterday pulling out old plants, trimming things and turning up the garden!}
*To have many trees in my backyard-a lot of folks in our development have a puny tree or two, but we back up to houses with big yards that have been here a while and have big trees.
*I am blessed to have been in a parking lot when I had my car accident-not on the highway, no one was injured, no one else's car was crushed-just mine, and I am lucky to have such a caring, helpful staff who were there for me on Friday.
*I feel lucky to be able to run and relieve my worries-yesterday was supposed to be a shorter distance, since 9 was the week before. I ran 5 and it was a beautiful day to do so.
*I am thankful to have friends who, even though I don't see them often enough, are still part of my life, and know I think of them often.
*I am thankful we have food, and can afford good meals.
*I am thankful and blessed to have my faith, my God who grants grace.
*I am truly blessed to have my job-I love teaching the same students each day, and for all the new things they teach me, too!
*I am very thankful for you, Reader-for all the consistent readers of this blog, and the new ones, too! :)

What are you thankful, blessed or lucky for? :)

March 18 2012 part 2

I did get some "fun" reading in this weekend. I mentioned last that I was reading Loving Frank. I had heard it was an interesting book. As I read, I learned it was about a woman who has an affair with Frank Lloyd Wright. They both are married with children. At first the writing seemed like it would carry the book. But, after about a quarter of the book I was disturbed at the whole situation-how could this end? How could it end well? So, I did something I NEVER do-I skipped to almost the end. I wanted to glimpse who she ended up with-was it worth wading through this story to find she made it back to her kind husband? And what I found in the end was worse! *Spoiler alert* She and her children are attacked by a crazy man and she dies!! It was enough for me to do something I also rarely do: stop reading the book and be done with it.

I am moving on to a book I once started, but didn't get into, so I set it aside. I am going to read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Hopefully it's a lovely book?! :)

March 18 2012

I was doing so well, and then halfway through March I missed a post, and then another.

Friday wasn't a great day. All was going normally until I got to school. I pulled into the lot, drove slow, since children would soon be coming out for recess, as always. I saw a teacher with her hands full, still traveling slowly. I pulled into my usual spot on the left, being careful not to hit the car parked on my left. I inched forward, then, I'm still not quite sure what happened. My foot went from the break to the gas-just slipped, as if my shoes were wet on slippery pavement. But I didn't realize what was happening until my car had lurched forward with great force and speed. My van rammed into a big cement culvert/planter thing. Of course the heavy cement thing didn't move, no give at all. My car crunched and my stomach lurched. I got out and at first glance it looked as if just the bumper was effected... Then a blue, funny smelling liquid started leaking out. It was coolant. I had severely damaged the radiator, and probably other things.

I shakily called my husband. He was calm and helpful-as I burst into tears, with shaky hands and racing heart. A male teacher arrived, looked in the car and helpfully called AAA to come tow my car. Then I cried some more. It is at the dealer, awaiting an appointment. The probably won't get to it until Monday evening at the earliest, and it will likely cost a LOT of $. So frustrating. I said I still couldn't figure out what happened. My coworker said, "That's why they call it an accident." :)

My husband came and got me from work, which delighted the students to get to see him. Then my oldest daughter and I went to a ladies' night of worship at our church together. She was so excited to go and I was glad for that.

So, Friday was no running, no ab exercises, no blogging... just tears and Bible. :)

I hope your weekend started better than mine, Dear Reader! :)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

March 15, 2012

Busy day ahead:
School newsletter notes to send in
laundry to do (isn't there always? :))
a run, ab exercises and a shower to get in before school
grading and notes for school today, including making a study guide.

I did read the Bible: “then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”” Acts 4:10,12 NIV
I have always had trouble connecting with Acts, but I like this.

I have also read a couple pages in Loving Frank and sent a note to a friend.So, 4/5 of my daily habits complete!
I've also eaten a healthy breakfast and logged it on The Daily Plate.

I listened to some new podcasts yesterday. I had read an article about Michael Pollan, author of In Defense of Food and Omnivore's Dilemma, and I decided to see if there were any podcasts including him. There were and I listened to 1 1/2 of them yesterday. He has such great ideas about food-food changes we need to make here in the U.S.

Did you know you don't have to have an ipod or itunes to listen to podcasts? Often you can play them right from your computer. It's wonderful. I've listened to some terrific podcasts from NPR, American Museums, Metropolitan Museum of Art, it's been great fun! :)

Do you listen to any good podcasts? I hope your week has been wonderful thus far, Reader! :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

March 14 2012

Another sleepy post...
I finished my mystery, which followed along just as I suspectected, I started "Loving Frank" which I heard was good, but haven't read. Did you read it? Was it a good read?
I read my Bible, did ab exercises, ran, and wrote a note to a friend, via Facebook messages.
I did eat great throughout the day, although I snacked and had wine this evening.
I smiled throughout the day-
it was a beautiful, sunny day.
I had a wonderful run and a lovely evening with my husband.

Hopefully more productive tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

March 13, 2012

Tuesday is complete, almost.
I haven't blogged. :)
Today I finished my mystery book-good, but followed the same pattern as they always do.
I wrote a note to a teacher friend who was having some family trouble.
I ran in the warm, spring weather. It was lovely. :)
I read a verse I was familiar with, and like very much: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 NIV
I filled out my March Madness bracket, although I went with my heart instead of my head... which doesn't usually work out.

I worked on eating better today-all day. Water instead of wine and snacks tonight. As for yesterday's post: Thank you Thimbleanna. Your compliment and encouragement meant a great deal! :) I truly appreciated it! :))

I have downloaded some new podcasts that I haven't listened to before. I did a search for Michael Pollan-The Omnivore's Dilemma author, and In the Defense of Food author. I hope they are interesting. I normally listen to a variety, but wanted something a little different.

Well, off to sleep. Hope you are having a good week!

Monday, March 12, 2012

March 12, 2012

It's interesting. When I was young, I didn't think about what I ate or how much I exercised. When I was little I was outside as much as possible. I loved running around my grandpa's property and playing the creek. Even as I got older, I started running in 1989, and I was active. I burned calories so fast that my parents encouraged me to eat a bowl of ice cream (Homemade Brand Mint Chocolate Chip or Homemade Brand Cherry Cordial were my favorites) or my mom would make me Mounds brownies. Those empty calories still disappeared. I was so thin. Even in college, when sometimes I would snack by pouring M & Ms into peanut butter jars and eating them out with a spoon, capping it off with a glass of milk, I didn't keep weight on. I had two daughters, still not gaining weight. In fact, at one point my grandmother said I looked too thin.

Only in the last three years or so did I start to realize I'm putting on weight, even as much as I run. I think about it often, now. I do run, 5 days a week, usually, but I do have bad eating habits. I haven't stuck with my Lenten goal of no snacks or wine in the evenings. Habits are hard to break. I get more and more frustrated, as I wore a short sleeved shirt yesterday and saw my arms bigger than ever before...It is hard. In my last job I was walking all around the school, I was moving a lot, all day, so that helped then. Now I sit at my desk and grade or plan, and then I head to school. I stand and move about the classroom, but not enough in other parts of the day. I get home and head for my desk and computer until my husband is ready for some tv time together, where I go and...sit...and sometimes eat crappy food.

What kind of example am I to my girls if I continue to eat poorly, snack and spend money on things that aren't good for me. We honestly didn't do that as a family until the last 5 years or so.

However... I've run marathons-pushing my body past exhausted, and half marathons leaving my body aching. I've had two daughters with no epidural. ;) My oldest-the actual pushing labor-was 18 hours and a cracked tailbone. And, yet, I did it. So, can I beat this food/weight issue? I think so. I'm still small by the average person's standards, but I'm not fit anymore. I had to buy another pair of pants this week because I didn't have very many that fit me. This lowers my self esteem. Blech. I don't like feeling like that. My family has a history of heart and weight problems, too. Something I need to tackle now.

This week's menu has been planned and most meals are pretty healthy. But I can't just eat healthier, I have to keep exercising and actually get some calories burned.

I saw a great blog here that had some good eating ideas I need to incorporate. I loved Cathy's More More Eat Less and More More Eat Well posts.

Now that I'm done sharing what is on my mind/heart, what's on yours Reader? Do you have struggles like this? Or are you finding you're in just the right spot?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

March 11, 2012

Another busy weekend has flown by. It's funny, I look forward to long weekends and getting many things accomplished. I never get as much as I thought I would crossed off that list, but I did get a few things done. For the first week in a while, I have planned the week's menu and then went grocery shopping-I used sale ads and coupons and saved almost 40 dollars. I'm not an extreme couponer, nor do I buy things I won't use or need. I just buy what I normally would-like Tide. It's the laundry detergent I use all the time, I like it's smell and that it works in my washer. It was on sale and I had a coupon. I have one in the laundry room, now, but it couldn't hurt to save money when I can.

I read from my mystery, rested from exercise today-I was sore from yesterday, still-and I enjoyed church, as well. We read and talked about the Christmas story in Matthew. It was interesting to hear it at a non-Christmas season time, to get us to really think about the story. I talked with my grandpa and mom online and will consider that a note. :) I am now blogging.

Now I'm off to spend time with my husband before our weekend has concluded. How was your weekend, Dear Reader? I hope it was well and enjoyable!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

March 10, 2012

I read my Bible-verses about marriage. I sought them out after squabbling with my husband. I was feeling very helpless and angry. So, I looked up "marriage" in the Bible. Here are two that spoke to me:
Colossians 3:18-19
18 Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.
19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.

1 Peter 3:1,7

1 Wives, in the same way submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives.

7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.

I read my mystery book for fun, I ran 9 miles, walked 1.5 and am blogging. I have only written an email to send to my husband telling him I was thinking of him while I read the above verses. All will be fine. Just have to slog through disagreements, sometimes.

Friday, March 09, 2012

March 9, 2012

Today is my wonderful mom's birthday. She is really a great lady.
She has a heart to help people and is always kind and thoughtful.
She quilts, used to cross stitch a lot, but now is more into quilting. She can look at any craft with sewing involved and create her own pattern for it. She is a great baker, too. She loves to craft with her granddaughters. (Does sewing successfully skip a generation? ;)) She is one of those people that everyone says, "She is so sweet and nice" about. Some of my family members call her "Switzerland" because she's always a peace maker. :) She works hard at the job she is doing-I remember she was a tomato planter for a while, as a second job, I think. I remember her coming home sunburned and tired, but having worked hard all day long, all season. She's worked in a number of different places. She's a great lady and I admire her greatly. :)

Note: only blogged and read for fun so far today, plan on getting a lot done on this "work at home" day! Off to work!

Who is someone you admire? Have a great Friday, Dear Reader!

Thursday, March 08, 2012

March 8, 2012

It is hard to believe Thursday is almost over.
My check in: no ab exercises, yet.
I didn't run, but I did go walking with my husband. It's rainy here, which I don't mind, but the 27 mile per hour winds would not be fun, and walking with my husband was. :) I wrote an email to our music teacher today, telling her how much I appreciated her-our students are practicing for the spring musical and they have come a long way, already. They have until May-she has done such a great job with them already, so I emailed and told her so. I also emailed my niece some interesting information about weedy sea dragons and seahorses on the National Geographic site, which was very informative!
I read my mystery for fun today and am about 2/3 of the way through. I also read Ephesians 1:3-6: 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he[a] predestined us for adoption to sonship[b] through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
Had an early release today where the students are out an hour early and we meet as teachers. We talked, planned and worked on a project-pictures to be posted soon! Fun was had by all. :)
We don't have school tomorrow, either, so grading, planning and preparing a field trip are on schedule for me tomorrow (as well as a breakfast out with my husband! :)) When I take a break from those things I will need to do laundry and clean house, so a long to do list. :)

What's on your to do list? Hope you are well, Dear Reader!

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

March 7, 2012

Well, I missed the abs yesterday, but my meals were delightfully healthy. Until some tortilla chips in the evening.
Well, today was a new day, right?
I read for fun, I'm blogging now, I wrote my mom a birthday card, I read the Bible {Philippians 12-18} and still, no ab exercises.

Sometimes things frustrate me..
Frustrating: making a mistake, fretting and sweating about it
Better: When the husband says don't worry about it...
In the end: the situation worked itself out-not perfectly, I had made a mistake, after all, but positively, I think.

Frustrating: when middle school students don't show respect
Better: when they show improvement and you can see you're making a real difference
In the end: I appreciate my job and these great kids-the opportunity to continue to encourage them to be wonderful people

Frustrating: dog having seizures
Better: seeing him feel better
In the end: he's back to his normal pest-self, trying to snag someone's food, barking like a crazy thing, and giving our other dog a hard time, but he isn't shaking and looking too old

Frustrating: the wind
Better: barreling through it on a run
In the end: being happy I got out there, even if it was shorter than I like

I think that's all for now... anything frustrating, or better for you?

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

March 6, 2012

I have read the Bible, more Philemon, actually. I wrote a letter/an email to someone I hadn't chatted with in a while and saw in the voting place, today, as I voted for our school levy. I read my mystery, briefly, I'm blogging now...
However, haven't done the ab exercises, yet, nor did I run today. We had a friend not realize that school was out today until dinner time last night. So, he brought his delightful girl over. Plus waiting at the voting place and taking my youngest quite a way to her basketball practice. Time disappeared. I guess that's life, isn't it? I have to learn to not fret over times like that with no run.

Today I was glad to be off facebook. I heard there are many people posting about the school levy-we truly are a city divided. It's sad and I am worried about the future here. Fingers crossed, since my oldest will be a senior next year, when a lot of the cuts, if there need to be any, will be happening, and my youngest who will be in high school in two years.

Monday, March 05, 2012

March 5 2012

Hello, Friendly Readers! :) I hope this post finds you happy and healthy at the start of this new week!

I have finished all my 5 daily habits for today: I read my Bible: Philemon 1:4-7 4 I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, 5 because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus. 6 I pray that your partnership with us in the faith may be effective in deepening your understanding of every good thing we share for the sake of Christ. 7 Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.

I wrote a dear friend a note in a card. I haven't heard from her in a while and she's been on my mind, as well as in my prayers.

I did my ab exercises today, which I also completed yesterday.

I read for fun, too, and now I'm blogging. Yay! :) (Yes, I do know we're only 5 days in. ;))

As I thought about these daily habits, this morning, I thought about why I am doing them. How will they "change my life"?
I wanted to incorporate them into my day because I want them to be regular habits. I want to have them be a part of everyday... but why? Well, I feel the Bible reading is good for my mind and soul, my relationship with God and my faith. I truly feel that should be part of my everyday. Ab exercises, well I may not feel like doing them everyday all year, but they will help me reach my fitness goal that I can hopefully maintain. Too, one of the three exercises is a yoga pose, and any yoga in my daily schedule would be welcome and wonderful. Writing letters/emails, etc, I may not do that everyday, but it causes me to put my mind, prayers and heart on someone important in my life and let them know it-a weekly tradition in months to come would be great!
Reading for fun-that is so important to me because I love to read, it is great to know I have worked with my brain :) and I have missed it. I feel like after this month, these daily challenges, it will be sliding a little again, because I will be deep into my class I'm taking to renew my license. Blogging-I love to blog-I love to read the posts from the "regulars". Molly-thank you, 8 miles was a long distance for me right now. How is your daughter's running coming along? I didn't know Dr. Suess's widow had been involved in the movie! Thimbleanna, thank you for the encouragement, too! The run was long! :)

Oh, I did see the Lorax and it made my eyes misty, it stays true to the book's message, while bringing it into the "now". Loved it. :)

Hope your week is off to a great, running start!! :)

Sunday, March 04, 2012

March 4 2012

Last night I didn't sleep very well. The soreness in my legs was unusually prominent. I had run quite hard. It was so windy and my legs felt like lead. Usually I am so proud that I have made the goal distance. Yesterday I was unhappy with my body. At one point I would look at my pace and it was good-then the wind would gust. I would be running hard, pumping the arms and I would be at lease thirty seconds slower. My body didn't like yesterday's run. My mind did, and it will help as I increase distances, but it wore me out. I'm still a bit sore today.

I read this verse today for my Bible reading: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”” Joshua 1:9 NIV I am reminded of my one little word-Brave. I haven't been lately, in fact-unless you count my leaving Facebook ;)-I've done nothing out of the ordinary lately. Just sitting in my lukewarm comfort zone.

Got my letter emailed out today, read for fun, am blogging now and will do the ab exercises a little later.

Looking forward to going and seeing the Lorax as a family in the next few minutes. I read that book to our oldest while we were expecting her and then to both girls as they grew-trying to encourage environmental awareness. :) Hope the movie carries the message to many other kids, the way the book does.

Saturday, March 03, 2012

March 3 2012

We had a busy day.
I ran 8 miles, the longest I've ran in a while. Ouch. :) But so glad I did it.
We had friends over for dinner. We made white chili, cornbread muffins, jello cups and broccoli slaw. They brought dessert.
It was a wonderful way to spend our evening!
We also played catch phrase and sounds like a plan.
I did all my 5 new habits:
read the Bible-James 2:12 and James 3:2
Wrote a birthday card/letter.
Read for fun, and now blogging.
Didn't work on specific ab exercises, but ran 8 miles. Tomorrow's schedule is no exercises, so I thought I'd do today's tomorrow.
Hope the weekend is going well, Reader!

Friday, March 02, 2012

March 2012

Here I am, day two.
I did all 5 daily habits yesterday and am halfway through today. Wow, those ab exercises hurt-the push-ups were terrible! :)

I did slip and have some wine and popcorn, after several days of no evening snacks and three days of no wine. Wine is just empty calories. We had gone to a store that sold alcohols and they had a great section of Chardonnays. They listed them from little or no oak to heavy oak. I like the more oak taste to the wine. I used my phone, took a picture of the display, and have been looking for the wines that were on the more heavily oaked end from the picture. I found one I liked and we had some of that last night.

I rearranged and cleaned my office this week. I know, it seems like I'm always doing that. I'm looking for a good way to keep it organized, with home office, craft and teaching items, something always gets messy. I can't work or think in cluttered.

I just checked out my report thus far and I have run 98 miles so far in 2012-and I haven't gotten today's run in yet. My Garmin watch keeps track of all of the details and I can get a report when I'd like.

Lots of grading to do, so I must go. Here is a quote to leave you with, by Dr. Seuss since today would have been his birthday:
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Life List

I mentioned Jenny Meyerson earlier today. She is pretty amazing. She created a life list during chemotherapy-and gives tips on starting yours.
Now her husband and kids are starting lists, too. What a great idea. I think I will start one, but, wow, where to start? :)
What would be on your list?

New Daily Habits

Hello! I hope this post finds you doing great! :)

Lenten Challenges are doing ok. Not great, not poorly. I checked Facebook, but have considered allowing myself to do so on Saturdays. Is that cheating? I am honestly feeling no. My grandpa and I talk via the message system on Facebook. He is not fond of the phone but enjoys saying hello on Facebook. I popped on Saturday and sent him a note. I also have a friend in Australia who is going through a tough time-health and life. We tried texting via cell phones, but it can get quite costly, quite quickly. I feel like I gave up Facebook because it was a detrimental time waster, and I wanted to use daily time to work on time in prayer. I feel like these two people are good reasons to pop on briefly-if that is my only, weekly, intension when I get on. I'm not playing the games I used to, I'm not "liking" or reading other people's items, I'm not commenting on anything or posting anything, either.

I haven't been snacking after dinner, in fact, I have gone to bed a bit earlier the last three nights. The first two I didn't sleep well, but last night I slept wonderfully.

I am running and feeling good about it-ran the suggested 7 miles for my training run. Still on track to do my first spring half marathon, knock on wood! :)

Today I begin a new habit challenge. I have been reading a wonderful blog-a blog about Jenny Meyerson. She is an amazing lady. Anyway, a recent post of hers was about her trying new habits-5 new habits for 30 days. It wasn't a life long commitment, as we all know life can be too challenging for that. ;) But, it was a goal. So, I have decided to do the same. I am challenging myself for 30 days in March. (last day is a freebie? To recover if I slip? :))

My 5 goals for March:
*Read the Bible more (yes, this is a Lenten goal and a New Year's goal, but it can't hurt to overlap! :))
*Stomach or ab exercises (I am running, but my diet still needs some work... there is poundage hanging on around my middle that needs some specific attention. I found a calendar/chart with exercises online that will work great!)
*Write one note, email, letter daily (regular readers know I love to do that, but I slip and don't do it.)
*read for fun (I have been working on it! I'm almost done with the scrapbook mystery I'm reading! A little each day would be so good for me!)
*blog (also something I enjoy, but "don't have time" to sometimes)

I was listening to a Vicky and Jen podcast about being happy. There were some great tidbits. One was about flexing our willpower muscles, which are like any other muscle. :) It was a great podcast with simple things we can do to think differently about our lives. One other tidbit I loved talked about our "bucket list" and how sometimes those include big things we want to do like go visit other countries, or climb mountains. Other bucket lists... those things we would want to do if we knew we only had 6 months to live... drive our kids in carpool every chance we got... thinking about that kind of list makes your perspective change. It did mine, at least. :) I really enjoyed it and I hope you get a chance to check it out, too.

I hope you have a wonderful day, too, Reader!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Well, Lent has begun. Yesterday was Ash Wednesday.
I am not currently Catholic, but I grew up Catholic. We are non-denominational Christian, now.
My church doesn't follow all the Lenten traditions, but I still like the tradition of giving something up or taking on something new, as a way to better myself and my faith.

I have given up Facebook. It was funny how many times I lamented that I didn't have time to read my Bible, there weren't enough hours in the day. But I checked Facebook several times each day and I'm sure that added up to several minutes. I didn't post things very often, I just had to be updated by other people's information. It's the second day and I am still finding it tough. I used to get on FB to play a couple games, as well, often needed to get my "daily spin" on all of them. More time disappeared.

I enjoyed my Bible time the last two days. Today I read Isaiah 42:10-17, which I hadn't taken the time to read, that I remember. It was nice. :)

I have also given up snacks after dinner. Last night was very difficult, but I was successful. We'll see how that continues! :)

I hope all is well with you Reader.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Isabelle's Tag

In a blog post written by Isabelle, on a blog I've been reading for years, she posted a tag. I thought I'd respond with my own, although I don't have cute grandson photos to share. :) Feel free, regular readers to fill out the tag on your blog, also! :)

The instructions are to:

* post 11 random facts about yourself {check}
* answer 10 questions {I used Isabelle's, and check}
* make up 10 questions for the next tag {check}
* suggest 10 people to tag (I shant-if you want to, go for it. :)}

Some facts :
1. I have a stuffy nose, which is frustrating because I am going through a "sick" spell, again.
2. I ran 3.3 miles today in the snow. This is interesting as it has been a mild winter thus far and it was driving down quite hard. I couldn't keep my eyes all the way open and my black running clothes were white. It was beautiful.
3. My class finishes in a week. I am making progress, but rather slowly.
4. My students took tests yesterday and today, and I have many essays I should be grading.
5. I love sticky notes and good pens. :)
6. I read a quote this weekend that I loved:"A bad attitude is like a flat tire. You can't get anywhere until you change it." -source unknown. I printed it out and hung it up at school. :)
7. It is Valentine's Day, here. I received fresh, homemade french toast for breakfast. Nothing else, which is what I requested. I got my husband new sweatpants. Not overly romantic, but his had a hole in an unflattering place from being old, and he couldn't get rid of them because he didn't have any other gray pairs.
8. I am sad football season is over. Thank goodness for college basketball.
9. I love reading and posting blogs, but as my time runs low on my class, I feel like a guilty procrastinator when I read blogs.
10. My eyes are heavy and I am sleepy, even though it is 9pm and I usually am up another couple hours.
11. I'm really proud of the wonderful family I have.

I used the five from In This Life that Isabelle made up, and five she answered.
1. Shoplifting - Absolutely never

2. Slapping children -maybe a hand or two when the girls were young and trying fingers to outlets!

3. Shower every day? usually, unless we are camping or have been overnight at someone's house, but on our way home that next morning.

4. All is fair in love and war - No.

5.What would be your (at least faintly possible) dream job? teacher, but full time and a good, experienced one, or a librarian :)

6. What era would you like to live in, if not now? the 1920s-fun music and flapper dresses. :)

7. What super power would you choose? speed-could get so much more done ;)

8. Would you prefer to be more beautiful or richer? richer-our oldest will be going to college soon ;) Plus that could help the rest of our family and friends, too.

9. Exactly how tidy are you? I would love to be super tidy, and some days I am, but some days I'm overwhelmed and I find things all our of order.

10. Queue jumping - do you? I think this is cutting in lines? And no. I wait my turn, it's good manners.

Now, 10 questions for the next person:
1. What is your one little word for the year?
2. What era could you live in other than this one?
3. If you had to choose a different occupation, what would it be?
4. Would like to die tomorrow or never?
5. Where would you have your second home, if you could have one?
6. Where is the first place on your dream list to travel?
7. Most frustrating repetitive chore/task you do?
8. If you had more time for a hobby, what would you choose?
9. If you could add more time to a day, how much would you add?
10. Your happiest time of the day?

Monday, February 13, 2012

One Little Word 2012

I haven't posted my One Little Word, yet, and here we are almost halfway through February.
I had a hard time picking a word this year.

I chose brave: a do it/try it/go for it theme.

I am very wimpy and a worrier. I worry so much that it hinders me from fun and enjoying my family. We went to Disney with our girls two summers ago and I wouldn't even get on rides they all enjoyed. I went so far as to go all the way through a long line (fretting all the way) and left the line as I got up to the ride. Granted, that really isn't my thing, but I do let my worry get in the way of life, sometimes.

Since choosing the word, I have tried sushi (and liked it!), which is "brave" for me. ;)
My in laws have given our entire family a cruise to Alaska next summer and we had to sign up for excursions. I chose kayaking (I am seriously afraid of water, so that will be fact my hands sweat as I type this! ;)) and a 3.5 hour horse back ride with my girls! Should be fun! (And I will definitely be sore after those two days in a row! :)

I think sometimes, if I found out I were deathly ill, what would I wish for? More time with family and friends... doing what? Worrying? God specifically tells me not to...So, I will be more wise with my time, worry less and be brave...

Sunday, February 12, 2012

February 12

It has been over a month since I posted. I should be working on homework and grading now, too.
I am swamped-buried under a mound of to-dos:

my class work (due on the 21st!)
grading for my classes I teach
Bible reading...

When I sit and make the lists, I feel like Indiana Jones when the big stone ball is rolling faster and faster upon him.

I enjoy blogging, in fact I enjoy most of the things on my list, but I feel like there aren't enough hours in the day.
Still, I find myself stealing a minute or three to peek at others' blogs or facebook, ten minutes on
Those minutes rolled together would give me time to accomplish what I want to...

How do you manage your time wisely?

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


It's been a few days without a post, but I am still here.
I'm still:
*Taking pics and documenting for Project Life
*Reading my Bible daily
*Eating fairly well for all three meals
*Drinking homemade coffee with little sugar and a little cream only
*Getting over this stinking chest cold
*Taking care of my oldest girl who is getting over this stinking chest cold
*Proud of my husband who ran 7 days in a row, 30 minutes each time and only took today off to meet his sister and her husband for dinner.

I'm also still:
*Waist deep in laundry, ok, not waist deep, but there's a lot of it. :)
*Working in a messy office (I told you I need to find a better way to organize so I can work and STAY organized)
*Need to go to bed earlier
*Stop snacking in the evenings
*Checking FB way too often and Pinterest, too
*Behind on all my scrapbooking goals
*Swamped with teaching and my own class...

So, back to work for me. :) What are you still up to? :)

Sunday, January 08, 2012


It's been a busy weekend, but without getting much accomplished.
I've hardly scratched anything off my to do list...
I hope you have had either a productive weekend or a fun, unproductive one. ;)

Friday, January 06, 2012

Other People's OLW

I saw some other posts on people's One Little Word and really appreciated them, as well as their choices.

Lisa Leonard (whose blog I love, products I love:)) chose Cherish for the year.

As I mentioned earlier, Ali Edwards' long list of words on the blog-she'll probably talk about hers soon.

Love Julie's Balance as a choice!

Hadn't seen this blog before, but loved Tiffany's post about the tree and her word being "grow".

Always love Sir Scapalot's digi scrapbooking work and liked his thoughts on his OLW

Here's a little blurb on a cute site: Elle's Studio where Ali talks about beginning the OLW and how she's doing a class dealing with it, this year. Looks fun!

These have definitely got my brain juices going. Now if only I didn't have so many things to do. I will probably have more time to focus on it... in June? ;) What about you, Wonderful Reader? :)

Thursday, January 05, 2012

One Little Word

The past few years, I have chosen "one little word" to work on the entire year.

One year I chose Faith. I wanted to dig more into my faith, celebrate my family's faith. We did and we all got baptized as a family that year.

One year I worked on peace, and one year grace. I liked the sound of both. I really studied peace, more, looking up passages in the Bible with it.

Last year I wanted to think of all three, although the one little word slipped my mind in the focused sense.

This year I'm still choosing. I want a word that inspires me to keep going, working on who I want to be as a person. I went to Ali's list of word choices she's accumulated this year and I started writing down words I liked... I wrote down 20 and hadn't gotten out of the e's yet. I need to give it more concentrated thought.

Any ideas as to what one little word would be for you this year, Dear Reader?

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

2012 Goals

I've given a lot of thought to my goals. We'll see if I can keep them. :) I'm going to try, though.

1. More than 500 miles running (500 miles last year and am hoping to top it this year)
2. 1/2 marathon under 1:50:23, my PR last Oct.
3. at least 30 minutes of exercise daily-running 5-6 days
4. no eating after 8 pm
5. continue avoiding Starbucks-still drinking homemade coffee, though. :)

6. Organize one room/area per month throughout the year {I know I "organize" some of these throughout the year, but they still aren't to my liking, yet}:
-bedroom and closet
-my den/office
-kitchen cupboards
-other food areas: fridge, upstairs freezer and downstairs freezer, lazy susan and pantry
-laundry cupboards and room
-closets (living room, near kitchen)
-dining room and living room
-basement living area
-basement crawl space 1
-basement crawl space 2
-my items in garage like gardening and bird seed

Do more:
7. reading Bible
8. reading books other than Bible
9. drink more water
10. write in a journal weekly/daily-I think writing things down for Project Life will help
11. scrapbook on a more regular basis-see Project Life. :)
12. Blog more/daily
13. Take more pictures-I used to, but slacked off last year.

14...Be a good person, mother, teacher, friend, family member... That's an easy one, right?? ;) I look at my seemingly long list. These are things I always want to work on. Will this year be the year I am who I hope to be? None of these is major, they are all doable.
What are your goals for the year, Dear Reader?

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Jan 3

Today I went to the doctor for my chest congestion and coughing. I received antibiotics and am hoping to be myself tomorrow! :)

My husband and oldest daughter are at the eye doctor for their yearly check-up appointments. Both needed new prescriptions/glasses.

My youngest daughter is reading a new book-enjoying her last day of reading "for fun" for a while, since the girls start back to school after their winter break tomorrow. They will have a lot of homework and their after school activities will keep them busy.

I have worked on my class assignment today. I am almost done with module 2. Each module has 6-8 sections about a specific area of differentiated instruction. The section I just finished was on research and strategies to implement in a classroom, dealing with physical environment (harsh lighting, temperature, music, etc.) and social and emotional environment (how to work with students and have them work together to have a positive effect on learning).

I have also done a little "fun" reading today... although I didn't really "have" the time to...
I started a book called Falling Together by Marisa de los Santos (the author of Love Walked In and Belong To Me-both of which I had heard were good, but haven't read). Pretty good so far, but I'm not too far in... Guilt over all I should be doing instead seeped in and squashed the enjoyment. ;)

Speaking of reading/books, one of my goals for this year is to read 6-12 books.
Books on my reading list?
*Falling Together by Marisa de los Santos
*Eggs in Purgatory by Laura Childs (I like her Scrapbook Mysteries and there is another coming out Jan. 18, and her Tea Shop Mysteries, so I thought I'd try it.)
*Laura Childs' next Scrapbook Mystery-she also usually has a tea mystery in March... if so, add that to my list!
*The next 3 books are chapter books that are historical fiction, but middle school level, so I could use them in my classroom in the future if I'm blessed to keep this same teaching job next year. Those three books are: War Horse-like the movie that just came out-by Michael Morpurgo, Bloody Times about Abraham Lincoln's death and the manhunt after by James L Swanson, and The Fighting Ground by Avi about a boy during the Revolutionary War
*Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo-both of my daughters and my mom liked/loved it.
*101 Things You Should Do Before Your Kids Leave Home by David Bordon and Tom Winters... my oldest will be leaving in the blink of an eye... thought it sounded interesting
*Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

I'm sure there are more, but that is all for now, since I have textbooks to read, too! :)
What is next on your list to read?

Monday, January 02, 2012

Right Now January

Right now I am happy to be posting for two days in a row.

Right now I have 42 unread emails in my inbox and 92 emails total-most of which can be deleted or filed. Some I need to reply to. I used to be so good at that...

Right now my google reader has 53 posts to read or organize. I have enjoyed Pinterest for helping me to link posts I like and then remove them from reader.

Right now I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with schoolwork-I am taking a class (we have to take some classes, as teachers, every so often to renew your license and not let it expire. I am due... I am taking one now and will take another directly after.) I am also trying to prepare a new unit for my students and am nervous about the whole thing. I have to prepare them for the National Geographic Bee... Still organizing thoughts and ideas.

Right now I am very excited about Project Life. I got the info/products last year, but I didn't have everything organized, laid out and accessible so I could actually use it as our daily lives chugged along. I am really very ready to be scrapping! :) I have been working on kits from scrapscription and enjoyed that, but am ready for the daily.

Right now my two biggest time wasters are Facebook and Pinterest. Contemplating stopping FB for the new year. A whole year? A month? Lent, when it comes around? What to do? Learn how to be adult and moderate FB intake? :)

Right now I am thinking that my first "baby" will be turning 17 this month and I CAN.NOT.BELIEVE.IT. She has her first boyfriend and it's sweet and scary all at the same time.

Right now I listen to my dog snoring on my office floor-he isn't even supposed to be up here, but I like his company. We have had several family and friends who have had to put their pets down lately and I am dreading the day when my almost-twelve-year-old weimaraner goes. He's been losing weight and not eating much over the last couple days, causing worry. Our other dog, almost eleven year old beagle, has a tumor that is getting quite large, too, and the vet wasn't very optimistic.

Right now I am very thankful that my husband got me this for Christmas. It is helping me keep my goal of getting rid of Starbucks. I stopped drinking it completely on Dec. 4. I have had a cup or two when my husband has brought me a "surprise" but that was two times in the last month. Back to regular coffee. I have had milk and sugar-not all the way to black coffee, yet. :) Down to 50 cents a day as opposed to almost 4 dollars a day...

Right now I am scurrying off to get to work-tomorrow I head back to school/teaching and I have yet to cross things off my "winter break to-do list". Wish me luck! What are you up to "right now"?

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Happy New Year!

So begins another year. I can't believe time is going so fast.
It's been almost a month since I last posted. So much going on.

I started getting a cold on the 12th. It has continued, like the last few years, in fact. I'm not sure why I can't shake it. Over the last week and a half it turned into something else. I'm not sure what. Coughing, hacking, feeling quite ill. I try to get over it myself, without visits to doctors or medication, but to no avail. Will be heading to the doctor soon, I think.

I have been running-yes, even with this illness. I never know which things to run through, and what not to. Will the running clear out my lungs or make them more tired? Will it clear out the "gunk" or cause my body to be weak and produce more? I'm just not sure.

Anyway, the running has been good. After Christmas I got new running shoes and have liked them. Last year my mileage total was 506.74. It wasn't as high as I had hoped/my goal set a year ago. But, I'm happy with it nonetheless. I have signed up for the running group I participate with in the summers. I am hoping to make myself do a spring half marathon, this year. Now to get healthy again so I am successful...

So many goals, thoughts about 2011, sites set on in 2012... I will be posting more soon. :)
Many Happy New Year hugs to you, dear reader! :)