Sunday, March 23, 2014

A day in the mountains

This weekend our friends Mitch and Becky came down to San Diego to visit.  We decided a drive up to Julian, a small, old, gold mining mountain town northeast of San Diego would be perfect.


We ate lunch at a little café, did some beer tasting at a few breweries.
and stocked up on famous Julian apple pies.
 
The boys all (unplanned) wore plaid flannel shirts.

They posed for silly photos and frolicked in the fields.  Usual.
 
It was a fun weekend to catch up with friends and eat way too much pie.
Is there such a thing as too much pie? 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Too much good stuff

This week has been full of good things!

First of all, my best friend Ashley moved back to California from Greenville, South Carolina. Yay!  I met up with her in Pismo Beach and she did 2 really great things. She crouched down to be as short as me in our pictures so I wouldn't look like a midget. Well, truthfully I still look like a midget, but she looks quite ridiculous which pulls the focus from my lack of height. And she pretended to be genuinely interested in my new car. The signs of a true friend.
I was good to her too. Right after this picture was taken, a seagull pooped in her hair. The audacity!
I quickly removed the bird poo with my own bare hands like any good friend would do.

My grandparents were super generous and helped a ton with our buying new cars last month so we made them a little gift basket to show our thanks. Their response: a thank you card full of more good things!

More exciting news: our Coachella tickets arrived in the mail!  4 more weeks til we're melting in the desert at this insane music festival. Woot?!


Our buddies Brian and Audrey (who we're going to Coachella with) had us over for dinner and game night. We played Headbandz and it was frustrating and hilarious. Good friends let you take their picture when they look silly and confused.
More shenanigans: my awesome coworkers organized not one, but TWO happy hour gatherings after school this week because surviving second trimester grades and open house called for extra celebrating. Teachers know how to have a good time!

My students were even good this week. We did an art lesson on Van Gogh and they made these starry night beauties.
Andrew was super awesome this week and taught my class a lesson on Brown vs the Topeka Board of Education. My students were bored of education, but it was super thoughtful for him to do that so I could set up for open house.


Andrew also helped me build 3 new dressers from Ikea.  In related news, I need to have a massive yard sale. Furniture overload!

Today he took me to my favorite beach in La Jolla to relax in the 93 degree sun.
It was like a mini vacation.
My friends Audrey and Angela were super good to me today as well and surprised me with a belated 30th birthday girl's day full of my favorite things: a manicure, a trip to Ross, birthday cake in the park, and a sandwich at Dudley's Deli. So much fun!
Alas, all good things must come to an end. Here's hoping my students don't pinch the crap out of each other tomorrow. Happy St, Patrick's Day!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

March looks like whoa

Am I the only one that feels like I blinked and it was March? We are only 5 days in and the highs and lows of this month make me want to take a nap and wake up in April... or if I'm being honest, mid June when school is out and day drinking isn't quite so frowned upon.

Here were some of the highs thus far...

Another class field trip.  I sort of dread these because my class is way out of hand, obviously. But I haven't lost anyone yet and it's a guaranteed 3 hours that I don't have to plan or grade anything. It turns out I hate lesson planning and grading chicken scratch writing. Perhaps I picked the wrong profession. We have another field trip next week to the water district. Riveting! But less prep for me, so win!

Sunday morning, Andrew and I discovered the best (besides Krispy Kreme) donuts in town.  What does that say about us that the highlight of our weekend was eating donuts? Oh well.  Andrew almost devoured his before I could take the picture. Mine, on the left, lasted 2 days.


My 14 year old cousin, Hannah (left) came to San Diego with some friends so we met up at Cheesecake Factory in Fashion Valley Mall and toured Point Loma's campus.
 

My students turned in their President reports that were technically due in February for President's Day. This student's last name is Adams, so that was her pick. She found him to be boring, so she put Christmas lights on her poster and jazzed her presentation up with a dance. A for effort?


Here is another example. I asked the students to include information about the president's early life, middle life and presidency, and later life as well as something about their legacy they left behind. This student talked for 5 minutes about JFK getting shot in the head and that being his legacy. Ok maybe it was only 1 minute, but time stood still. Sometimes I'm relieved to teach at a crappy really low parent involvement school, because anywhere else in the district I would have gotten phone calls!

 

Saturday night was church and baby Kynlee's dedication. Tiffany was my college roomie and one of my best friends (she even came to Texas to visit when she was pregnant with Kynlee) so this was really special to be a part of.


But that was the last good thing that happened. The rest of the month has been total rubbish.

I had a dentist appointment where I was only supposed to get x rays and a cleaning. I left with 2 fillings. Probably my fault from eating that huge donut for days, but still. My mouth was numb for 4 hours and the fillings were on opposite sides of my face. So inconvenient!

Andrew's month old car broke down. I know, already! Apparently the alternator needed replaced and it's a crucial part to the functioning of a car. Sad violin. We were driving to church (I know what you're thinking: "Could it be SATAN?!" - SNL church lady) when all of the lights came on and the car stopped. Oh and it was pouring rain with little visibility and we were in an intersection. Thank God we upped our triple A coverage and were able to get towed to the mechanic.  The crisis was averted to the tune of $350 and 2 days of car-pooling. For a second there I thought we would be buying a new car every month this year!

We filed our taxes and only got $4 back from the state of California. What's up with that? Some reunion, I feel slighted! We got $300 back for Federal but it all went straight to the alternator. Whatever the bleep that is. Don't worry, I still had a shopping spree at Nordstrom Rack and Burlington Coat Factory that puts those measly car repairs to shame. I suppose it's twisted logic, but I want something fun that I can wear to make up for spending money on ugly stupid car stuff. I'm going to be the fanciest homeless woman in all of San Diego. It's just like Lupita Nyongo said at the Oscar's, "No matter where you come from, your dreams are valid." I'm sure she was referring to my dream of being vagrant chic.

The bummers didn't end there. Today the superintendent stopped by my classroom for an observation. Fine, no big deal. I'm a first year teacher and am basically getting reviewed and evaluated on the daily. Except that I got another new student this week putting me at 34 eleven year olds in a room the size of a shoe box with only 32 student desks. Peachy. Add to that the principal took my overhead projector for his meeting this morning leaving me with butcher paper and sharpies to teach a lesson that would be analyzed by my boss' boss' boss. Fantastic. Here is a picture of the lesson. The kids got to use super high tech post it notes to contribute their ideas. In related news, our staff nominated the picks for teacher of the year this week and it ain't me. One less thing to stress about!

*Disclaimer: I actually love my job and am passionate about teaching my students. I complain a lot here because it's as exhausting as it is rewarding.  Also 34 students is too many. That is all.



March hasn't been all that bad for everyone though. On our walk this afternoon, a gay older man stopped to ask me what breeder I got my maltese from or if I would consider selling her or her future puppies to him. Obviously Maddie is having the BEST week ever because everyone knows the gays are the trendsetters and my Maddie Bear is clearly a hot commodity this season :)  For the record, I would never sell her puppies; too many of my family members have dibs already, though I'm sure that man would dress them up super cute.

A couple more good things: grades are done for the trimester, we are spending this weekend with family in Pismo Beach, and tomorrow I have an appointment to get a referral (I know, appointments for appointments - so tacky!) to the San Diego Fertility Clinic later this month to figure out our next steps towards a baby. The soonest anything major will happen is later this Summer because this school year is bonkers! I'll keep y'all updated.


Hope your March is off to a great start!