Saturday, March 31, 2012

Restful Saturday

Well it was an 'at home' day for me today! Spent the morning planning for science lessons next week.  I think it took me far longer than normal.  I got enough done to put the work aside and rest and watch tv for the day.   Even with all that resting I'm not feeling much better.  Early to bed again tonight with the hopes of nipping this head/chest cold in the bud.

Last night I did spend an enjoyable couple of hours with n just hanging out in her room, resting and listening to music.  We also shared stories about our days.  It was fun to connect with her.  She enjoyed it too!  Not sure if I've shared her big news.... her braces are now off!!! Almost 2 years of wearing braces has paid off.  She has the most amazing smile!  Her teeth are straight and bright white.  She is now even more beautiful than before!

Happy Saturday everyone.


Friday, March 30, 2012


Oh well I knew it would happen eventually!  I have come down with a whopper of a cold.  Hopefully I'll be able to sleep it off this weekend.  I have a lot of planning to do, but I'll take it one subject at a time.  Maybe I'll even get n or N in on the work.

So this is just a quick check in before I go rest on the couch!

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend.


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Back to The Hunger Games

So as I began in the last post...

We were able to see The Hunger Games movie this past Saturday.  Our anticipation had been building for months.  N and I have both read all three books in this series and n heard all about the action from us and friends at school.  I have had many disappointing  experiences over the years with movies based on novels.  Typically I am disappointed by the movie!  So to say I was concerned about the quality of this movie is an understatement.  My son is a purist when it comes to novels turned movie.  He expects the producers to recreate, in a very small amount of time, what the author has developed over hundreds of pages of detailed text.  So going to any literature based movie is a tall order in our home!

From the opening to the final credits this movie did not disappoint.  It stayed true to the story.  Only a few details were changed and in my opinion the changes or omissions did not impact the plot or character development.   Throughout the movie I found myself comparing the actor to the image of the character in my mind's eye!  In several cases I was completely off.  The casting was very good.  The main cast of characters was amazing!  I know that there has been some controversy about the violent nature of the movie. My question to those who are concerned about this is 'Did you read the books?'.  The movie could have been far more violent.  Both N and I thought that if they depicted on screen all that was written then the movie would have been rated 'R'.  I think that some folks who went to the movie without reading the books were most likely taken aback by the subject matter.  Without some preparation...even with the background of reading the books... the subject matter is tough.  Kids fighting to the death in a survivor type situation that is manipulated by adults is disturbing subject matter.  In any event this movie left me wanting more!  I can't wait to see how the film makers work their magic on the second book.


Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Hunger Games

Our intentions this weekend were to see the movie The Hunger Games Friday night.  It was not meant to be.... bridge traffic and ticket sales prevented us from seeing the movie until Saturday.  It was frustrating but we made the best of Friday by heading down to Hyannis to browse at Barnes and Nobles.  There is nothing like walking the floors of a multi floor book store.  There is something about rows and rows of beautiful new books that inspires me and just plain makes me happy!  It is a complete sensory experience... the sights, the smells and the sounds of a bookstore.  I remember back in the day when Walden Books was our local book store.  It was quaint and filled with stacks and stacks of books. I remember having to turn sideways to get through some areas of the store.   I think that was where I began my love affair with the book store. ..

Well back to the movies!  Saturday morning we were able to get our favorite seats at our local movie theater to view the show we had been waiting for...  more on the movie later.  

Our Word View - Glow

Last week I came across a few photos that I thought would work for white, but when I peeked at this weeks work GLOW I knew what I had to do!

Honestly I can't think of another subject that better depicts the word GLOW:

This is a picture of Dad and me during the father/daughter dance at my wedding.  That was truly the most incredible day of my life.  I remember us all being so happy!  What a day.  It does not feel like 19 years ago.  So much has happened since then.  If we could only bottle the glow of a newly married bride.....

For my dear friend Liz's take on our word please visit our blog, Our Word View.  For more photographs inspired by our words you can visit our flickr page.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friday Fill Ins!

And here we go...

1. Spring has felt more like summer this past week!
2. Be strong and cary on!
3. I forgot how enjoyable it is to browse in a bookstore.  I miss our Borders :(!
4. Caesar salad is delicious!
5. Heads, shoulders, knees and toes (of coarse!).
6. Walking the beach is my favorite form of exercise when it's warm enough out not to wear a coat!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to going to bed early I'm tires, tomorrow my plans include going to the 10:30 showing of the Hunger Games and Sunday, I want to regroup for the week!


Thursday, March 22, 2012

Simple Woman's Daybook 12


Outside my is bright and the sky is milky blue.

I am thinking...that I miss having time in my day to talk on the phone to my best buddies!

I am thankful for...the beautiful weather we are having this week... a glimpse of summer... but I am as thankful for the extended forecast that indicates our pattern will return to seasonable temps next week.  I love Spring and don't want to miss it this year.

From the kitchen...a little better this week!  We had a from scratch roasted chicken diner, asian chicken soup, sloppy joes and tacos.  Tonight is pizza night and I'll be trying a new pizza place.

I am jammies on the bottom and my black tank on top.

I am creating... my own writers notebook.  I am looking forward to getting into the Lucy Calkins program and writing with my fourth graders!

I am continue to work on my Schoolspring profile so that when full time positions come up I'll be able to send in my application immediately. Fingers crossed peeps!

I am wondering... what my big paycheck will look like!

I am reading...Lucy... and my beloved blogs.

I am hearing...n chastise Flicka.  Evidently she has something she shouldn't!

I am hoping...that The Hunger Games movie will live up to the hype!

I am looking forward to...the weekend!

I am much all the time... but especially how to ask for help and advise.

Around the house... Spring cleaning is necessary still!!!

A favorite quote for today... "When you have to make a choice and you don't, that in itself is a choice."William James

One of my favorite soaking up the sun and some vitamin D.

A few plans for the rest of the week: a new episode of Vampire Diaries (YAY), movies with the kids, reading and planning over the weekend!  Working in the yard... it needs spring cleaning too!

A photo I'm sharing:


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Made It Through

Well we all made it through the first day of MCAS!  Long comp for N and the kiddos in my 4th grade yesterday and ELA for n today.  The long composition made for a very long day.  I find the process so interesting.  Writing a multi page piece during one day from planning to final draft is something that is not done in school.  Writing is a process that typically happens over the course of time; multiple days with mini lessons that provide instruction and support as kids master their skills.    I get that accountability and assessment is necessary and can even be helpful but I wonder who in the private sector, or even in the public sector would sit in an office at the same desk for an entire day working on only one project.  N's prompt was perfect for him.  I hope he did his best work.  I'm sure he did.  He is fully aware that how he does this year on MCAS has dire implications for his class selection next year.  If he performs at a certain level he will continue on the accelerated path he is currently on in Math and will most likely be able to take a foreign language next year.  If language and simple problem solving.  We'll have to wait until mid summer to find out.

We are one day closer to the weekend.  There is much excitement in this house around the opening of the Hunger Games movie.  I am as excited as the kids!  We will definitely go out to see the movie on Friday.  I'm sure the movies will be packed but sometimes that can be as much fun as having the theater to yourself.  I can't wait!  The book series was amazing.  I'll let you know how the movie compares.

Time to get back to morning chores!  Puppy is calling.  Time to go out.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Texture Tuesday- Black and White

Last summer I had such wonderful luck with the cala lilies that I purchased from QVC.  Above is a picture of one of my glorious pink blooms.   Much tweaking went into this image including adding two layers of Kim's Aurora texture.  This particular image has more of a sepia tone.


Sunday, March 18, 2012

Our Word View - White

Originally when I chose the word white I thought it would be an easy week.  I was wrong!  I had a very difficult time deciding what way to go with this prompt.  In the end I decided to think spring and Easter and go with an image of a beautiful white lily that was a part of a flower arrangement sent to my family after my dad passed away.  I can almost smell the aroma as I look at this image.  I love how the shadow of the stamen is captured in this image.  In the background is a gorgeous white hydrangea.  In this photo white represents grace and peace.  
Visit Liz to see her interpretation.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Friday Fill Ins on Saturday!

1. Welcome to my world. 
2. Saturday and Sunday makes me jump for joy.
3. There's a bit of Spring fever in the air!
4. Their unique personalities and temperments (are)  is the thing(s)  I love most about my children.
5. Eyes are the window to the soul! And the first thing I notice when I meet someone new.
6. Day 20 is what I'm eagerly awaiting.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to well we watched our new favorite show, tomorrow my plans include coffee and shopping later with the kids and Sunday, I want to get all the laundry done, folded, ironed and ready for the week!


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Simple Woman's Daybook 11

Outside my is gray and foggy and I find myself yearning for 'green'. 

I am thinking...that I could work 24/7 and still find more that needs to be done to prepare for teaching. 

I am thankful for...results from the best writing lesson EVER this week!  I actually got goosebumps when I read one of my students revised leads!  AMAZING

From the kitchen...oh my poor, neglected kitchen.....

I am jammies until I have to change.  I will be wearing my green pants my black shirt and most likely my black vest.   I have to say that my wardrobe needs an infusion of creativity (or maybe a transfusion... it is in a very sad state)

I am creating... little notes for all my friends in my old classes.  I'm thinking a general note to all the kids and then a little individual piece of art to each friend.  A lot of work but I did receive a beautiful envelope of birthday cards so....
I am work on my Schoolspring profile so that when full time positions come up I'll be able to send in my application immediately.  Fingers crossed peeps!  

I am wondering... how next week will go with the beginning of MCAS

I am reading...some new professional development materials having to do with the writing process.  I love reading children's writing but have never felt solid in my teaching in the subject.  With the help of colleagues that is improving every day!  I am so excited. 

I am hearing...Flicka whining as she lost her toy under the couch.    

I am hoping...that N will feel better.  Last week he was fighting something today he is home with a fever.  :(

I am looking forward to...getting past the 20 day mark in my new position.... bring on the big bucks. 

I am much all the time... but especially how to ask for help and advise. 

Around the house...  Spring cleaning is necessary. 

A favorite quote for today... "Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great."
– Mark Twain
One of my favorite sleeping until 7:30 on the weekend.  Getting up at 5:30 is the pits!

A few plans for the rest of the week: a new episode of Vampire Diaries (YAY), notes to old friends, clothes shopping with the kids,  gathering info for some financial reorganization.    I'm also going to continue to say a lot of prayers for my friend who is fighting cancer.    Please if you are the spiritual type add my dear friend M to your prayers.  The prayers are working!   I hear she is feeling better.... side effects of treatment knocked her for a loop.  Thank you for your prayers and thank God that she is seeing improvement. 

A photo I'm sharing:


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Texture Tuesday - Free and Easy

Well I've been away from my photoshop fun for a bit!  Life has pushed it's way in and taken over.  This week however, called for old favorites and free and easy.  I couldn't resist looking through my textured pics to find something that called out to be shared.  The following picture reminds me of family and spring.  I used Kim's luminous texture as well as a scripted stamp.  I hope you enjoy the final results.


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Our Word View - Serendipitous

World English Dictionary
serendipity  (ˌsɛrənˈdɪpɪtɪ) 
— n
the faculty of making fortunate discoveries by accident

Liz picked a challenging word for this weeks photo challenge!  At first I was stumped, but then I remembered the following photo:

The connection is not obvious.  It wouldn't be unless you knew the story.  This beautiful piece of glass came from the bottom of a cement pit!  Last year as we renovated 40 M one of the demo jobs was to deconstruct the cement block front porch and remove the 40 year old oil tank so that we could move a new tank into the utility room of the home.  It was a huge physically laborious job that included using a heavy sledgehammer  to destroy the cement blocks and poured deck.  Much of the cement ended up filling the 4' by 8' pit covering the oil tank and anything else that happened to be under the tank.  As R removed all the rubble he came across the above glass in a very different state.  I did not recognize it from my childhood and had no idea how it ended up in the oil tank pit.  I do know that it must have belonged to my parents as the stairs were constructed by my Dad after he raised the house.  How excited I was to have a piece of art glass from the past.  Serendipity at it's best!

Please visit Our Word View to see Liz's interpretation of this word.  You can also check out our Flickr group.  


Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday Fill Ins

1. When I heard the news I was shocked!
2. My heart  makes me want to go and pay my respects but I'm not sure that is what she would want.
3. Get a good book and relax a bit!
4. Home is where my heart is.
5. Hands reveal so much about a person.
6. It is NEVER ok  to put anybody down.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to maybe visiting with S (fingers crossed), tomorrow my plans include some quality time with N and n and Sunday, I want to work on supplemental plans for my class.

Happy Friday everyone!


Thursday, March 8, 2012


Outside my is bright and sunny... the sky is a milky blue.  

I am thinking...that there is so much to learn!  

I am thankful for...the support of my new colleagues and kind friends who have put in the good word for me with administration.

From the kitchen...this week we have enjoyed sausage soup...yumm, chicken salad, Caesar salad, and most likely tortellini tonight. 

I am jammies until I have to change.  I will be wearing my black pants my green sweater my loopy scarf and most likely my black vest.   

I am creating... a plan to implement all that I have learned in my classroom.  I can't wait to get back to a regular routine after our wax museum today!
I am stay late at school today and review my plans for the next three weeks.  My focus will be the mini lesson in writing and reading.   

I am wondering... what  the children will bring in for props today for the wax museum.  

I am reading...some old professional development materials.  

I am hearing...Flicka chewing on her new bone.  

I am hoping...that N will feel better.  He's fighting something. 

I am looking forward for supper and the end to my first  full week in my new classroom.  

I am to balance.

Around the house...we need to implement more organization.

A favorite quote for today... 

One of my favorite enjoying a warm sunny day! 

A few plans for the rest of the week: notes to old friends, movies with the kids, a visit with my friend S and gathering info for some financial reorganization.  .   I'm also going to continue to say a lot of prayers for my friend who is fighting cancer.    Please if you are the spiritual type add my dear friend M to your prayers.  The prayers are working!   Thank you for your prayers and thank God that she is seeing improvement. 

A photo I'm sharing:


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Don't Blink!

If you blink the weekend will be gone!  At least that is how it has seemed around here lately.  The weekends go by amazingly quickly.  Just when I feel like it is time to relax I realize that it is time to prepare for next week.  It was a very productive weekend however!  Report cards done, social studies test corrected, hair colored, birthday celebrated and gifts opened and readied for the morning.

This past week also went by in a flash.  My first full week in 4th grade was fabulous.  We are all managing the transition quite well.  I love this class.  The children are engaging and for the most part happy to be at school.  They listen and get their work done.  It truly is a pleasure to spend the day with these students.  The transition has not been without it's challenges. I was left with the monumental task of inputting and sorting out grades for all of my students.  Documentation for each curriculum area varied.  Some was quite good while other documentation needed a bit of consideration.  In the end I completed the task and even though I inputed over 1200 grades I feel good about the end result and I'll take inputting grades into the computer any day over handwriting grades on the old 4 layer report cards that required white, green, yellow and gold white out in case of mistakes.

I feel truly blessed.  I hope you are all feeling blessed in your lives as well.


Our Word View - Opportunity

This week's word is opportunity.  It was a bit tricky and I had several images and possibilities in mind but my final choice is the following photo for two reasons.  First this photo was staged and taken with a series of many other photos for a photoshop texture class I took last year with Kim Klassen.  It was an opportunity to begin learning a new art form.  Truly this class opened a whole new dynamic world for me in terms of photography.  What a wonderful opportunity.  Second this photo gives me the opportunity to reflect on all the beauty my Mum shared with me as a young girl, beauty that I relish and enjoy sharing now with my own daughter.  You see these pieces were part of a small tea set given to my Mum by her brother who was a navy chaplain and Jesuit priest stationed in Okinawa for a time.  I look at this image and  the warmth of fond memories washes over me and brings a smile to my face.

For another interpretation of the word Opportunity please visit our collaborative blog Our Word View.  We also have been joined on Flickr by two new friends who you can see here.


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Simple Woman's Daybook 9

Outside my is dark and wet...the promise of snow was not to be!

I am thinking...that waking at 5:30 is just too early as I am feeling extra tired today!

I am thankful for...the support of my new colleagues! 

From the kitchen...I'm planning on recreating Bertucci's sausage soup recipe.  Thanks to my sister posting the recipe on FB.  I hope it is good.  

I am jammies until I have to change.  I am hoping to go out and pick up some more 'hip' clothes this weekend so I look more professional at school. 

I am creating... thank you cards. 
I am stay organized and enjoy my time in 4th grade.  It really is a great year!

I am wondering... what  the long comp practice will be like on Monday.  We shall see.

I am reading...Nothing still. :(  I'm in a bit of a reading slump unfortunately. Now that I'm done with PD for a while I can pick up something fun to read. 

I am hearing...the news and the dog.  

I am hoping...that I will be able to move into a full time teaching position next year. 

I am looking forward for supper and the end to my first  full week in my new classroom.  

I am to get things done in school and leave the job there.  I hope I can be successful in these lessons. 

Around the house...I still feel the need to spring clean.  Maybe on Saturday while R is picking up some extra hours at work. 

A favorite quote for today... "Experience is not what happens to a man.  It is what a man does with what happens to him."  Aldous Huxley 

One of my favorite window shopping with n.  This weekend we'll go beyond window shopping.   

A few plans for the rest of the week: thank you notes, planning for next week, pizza night, Vampire Diaries-just 3 more episodes till we are all caught up!  and shopping and movies with the kids this weekend - hopefully.   I'm also going to continue to say a lot of prayers for my friend who is fighting cancer.    Please if you are the spiritual type add my dear friend M to your prayers.  The prayers are working!  She is in her last week of treatment!  Now she has to let her body heal from the treatment.  Thank you for your prayers and thank God that she is seeing improvement. 


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