Friday, September 26, 2008

Positive Energy . . .

I am trying to embrace the positive in my life right now. I've been having a kind of hard time at my job. I have one class that is beyond fabulous. Teaching them is so joyous. They are absolutely wonderful. I have two classes that are . . . more challenging. These classes inspire frustration. Most of the period is spent with me saying things like "Excuse me," "Please show some respect," "I'm not going to talk over you," and an occasionally yelled "HEY!" to get people to stop and pay attention. I am having to turn in to an edgy, Nazi, drill sergeant, and I hate it. Usually a good "teacher look" and one or two phrases like those mentioned above will whip the adolescents into submission, but with these classes, not so much. Things that have usually worked for me while teaching just aren't working, and it's leaving me unsure of what to do next.

The sad thing is, I have a lot of students in both of these classes that I completely adore. I'm just having a hard time dealing with the problems. Anyway, after waking up this morning with a tiny bit of dread about the aforementioned classes, I decided to try to be positive. On my way to work today, I was counting my blessings, because I really have been showered with them lately. Here are just a few that I am going to recount now, because I thought I was going to cry after teaching my last class today.

1. The fact that Chad and I are homeowners. How fun is it that we own a house? We've changed the locks, I've knocked down spider webs, and we are going to start tearing down wall paper this weekend. There's so much work to be done, but it's so exciting!

2. The fact that our car is still functioning. After being repaired twice, Mr. 4-Runner seems to be doing much better. I have been buttering him up with a lot of praise, so hopefully he will continue to run properly without costing us any more money.

3. All the good students I do have. And I really do have a LOT. I love so many of my kids. They are funny, intelligent, and thoughtful.

4. Fall weather. The hot, humid days are finally melting away into cool, crisp ones. I love it. We've also had a ton of rain, which I can't get enough of. Last night I fell asleep to it pitter-pattering away. I can't wait for the leaves to start changing.

5. My previously mentioned PLANE TICKET which leads to my family, a baby to hold, and Cafe Rio burritos.

There you go, five things that make me smile despite a kind of crappy end to my school day.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I just bought a plane ticket online so I can go spend Thanksgiving with my family! I am so excited!!! I have been searching for an affordable plane ticket for the last few months but haven't been able to find anything. In fact, the prices have kept going up, which has made me think I wouldn't be spending the holiday with my family. Well, tonight I was talking to my grandma about it, and she suggested a couple of travel deal websites I'd never heard of before. I ended up finding a ticket price lower than ANY I have seen. Thanks, Grandma Joy!

As an added bonus, I will get to hold my sweet, little niece while I'm out there as well.


2 Posts that Have Been a Long Time Coming . . .

Ok. I've been meaning to blog. Most of you have probably thought I've died, that I've been buried 6 feet under, and are feeling sorry you didn't have the chance to say goodbye. I do apologize. But, shed no tears -- I am alive and well! I've just been slacking in the blogging department. So, without further ado, here are two tales I've been waiting to spin for you:

In Case We Needed a Reminder of Why I Hate Walmart & Refer to it as Satan's Five and Ten:

So. A few days ago, I decided to run by WalMart on my way home from school. I was behind on my grading, and decided to pick up a pocket calculator that I could take between school and home. I've been using the calculator on my computer at work to calculate percentages, but thought it might be easier to have a small calculator to use instead. Anyhow, I get to Walmart. Keep in mind, this is supposed to be a quick, run-in, grab what I need, and go kind of trip. I had intentions of getting home and getting all of my grading done before Chad finished work.

I took a quick stroll down the office supply aisle and found a calculator, but it was a little bit bigger than what I wanted, and it was $8.00. I thought it was the only choice at first, but a walk down a second office aisle explained the lack of variety. All of the other calculators were locked in a glass case. OK. When I say ALL, I'm not talking about just the fancy-schmancy graphing kind that you have to buy for high school advanced algebra classes, I'm talking about the DOLLAR pocket-sized calculators. The three dollar ones were locked up as well.

OK. I only needed a calculator to figure out percentages, so I figured the $1.00 calculator was the way to go. I mean, why spend $8.00 on something related to math, the most horrendous subject in the world, when I could spend $1.00 instead.

After asking the first old employee I could track down if they had a key, and finding out that, no, they did not, nor did they have any clue who did, it was time to ask said old lady to use the intercom for me. She did. I heard, "customer assistance needed at the calculator case." I waited. I waited some more. I went in search of another old employee. This time I found a delightful woman who got on the intercom not once, but TWICE for me. "Customer is STILL waiting at the calculator case." By this time another customer had joined me at the calculator case to wait for the key to arrive. Finally, the gem of a lady who used the intercom twice, marched to the front to personally get a key for us.

By this point, my plan for a five minute calculator search had turned in to a thirty minute fume-fest. I hate the fact that I am so impatient, but I am. I was very kind to the woman who helped me, because I realize it is not her fault that the company she works for is in cohorts with Satan.

When I got home, I started grading. I had calculated a total of three percentages when my purple, one-dollar calculator decided it would no longer let me use the number 7. My entire trip had been a complete waste of time. And the thought of driving back to WalMart to attempt returning a $1.00 piece of merchandise just wasn't appealing. My father-in-law found a calculator for me, which made me regret the earlier trip even more.

All in favor of K-town getting a Target?!?!?!?!?!

Some People Aren't Brought Up Right, Or Why I am Thankful My Husband is Cultured:

On Friday night, Chad and I went to ECU to see the North Carolina Symphony. It was his idea, and I'm so glad he had the inspiration to take me. We had a great time. We would have had an even better time, had the idiot behind us stayed at home.

Obnoxious Male Student, LOUDLY, on his phone: "No, I'm at a concert. No, believe me, I'm not here because I want to be! Yea, are you guys going out later? I had to pay 32 bucks to get in to this thing. I'm so pissed."

After his phone call, he then proceeded to make similar commentary to the floozy girl sitting next to him for the remainder of the concert, whilst I squirmed in my chair, trying to fight the urge to turn around and smack him.

The concert was wonderful. We had a great time and are looking forward to going to some similar things at ECU in the future. Most of all, the trip left me feeling grateful that Chad enjoys going to things like that, too, so that I don't have to force him to go unwillingly.

So there you go, two tales from my week. Oh, and on Tuesday we will finally be official homeowners! We are so excited for closing. The owners are going to pay for the minor termite damage that was found in the outdoor shed area, which is also great news!

Monday, September 08, 2008

The Good Thing About Vampires Not Being Real

Is that apparently I have quite tasty blood.

Mosquitoes have always like me.

My body right now can testify that the Southern ones actually LOVE me.

I'd hate to see what a non-Cullen vampire posse would do to me.

I am COVERED in bug bites.

One, little, phone conversation outside on Sunday night (the Reese house is a fortress that kills cell phone signals, so I've started to talk on the phone outside) and you'd think I've been tramping through bush in the Amazon.

It frightens me to realize they didn't all come from mosquitoes. It was dark outside, so I have no idea what was swarming me.

If I didn't know better, I'd say I had developed some strange disease that covers my limbs with contusions. In fact, my students probably thought so today when they saw my bare, white legs. I wore a skirt which made the red knobs all over my skin pretty impossible to cover up. Unless I wore nylons. Unfortunately, I am not the nylon wearing type. No matter how pasty I am.

So there you go. Right now I am a pasty, diseased-looking woman, who itches profusely.

With a broken car.

Excuse me while I go wallow in self-pity with a bottle of chamomile lotion.

And maybe just a little bit of chocolate.
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