Friday, August 28, 2015

Back to School

It's been a week of "back to school".  I went back on Wednesday.... Love these nails!
Welcome back!
I should really get back into a routine with my nail art... It makes me happy!  In a past life, I would do my nails every Sunday night.  I got out of that habit and every time I do a cute new thing, I wonder why I don't do it any more.

My back to school was pretty uneventful.  Yes, there was crying, some screaming, and a lot of "when is it snack time", "when are we going home", (days 1, 2, and in kindergarten!) but... Overall, it was a great start to the school year!  My kids are cutie pies and I am looking forward to getting them into a routine and helping them learn all the great things we learn in kindergarten :)

But the really big news around here is that we moved my Girlie into her dorm room this week.  I am generally not openly expressive.  I tuck it all away inside.  This new chapter?  Oh, it was hard.  Girlie doesn't know anyone at the college she is going to.  Leaving her there was not easy.  She's been "okay" these last couple weeks as she has said goodbye to the friends who have left for college before her.  There's been drama, not big drama, but bigger than we've had before.  My Girlie is not a drama queen, not by a long shot.  So, when her eyes filled with tears as we said goodbye.... Ugh,  it just about wrecked me. 

Puppy goes to college :)
That picture of the stuffed animal?  Well, that's "The Puppy".  Girlie's had him since she was born.  When she pulled him out of her bag and put him on the bed?  My husband, the big tough weenie, had to leave the room.   It was all kinda down hill from there.  So, we've said our goodbyes and had our moments and I even waited FIVE WHOLE HOURS to check in on her.  The first report has come in... "It is awesome."  

Oh, Yay!  I am so much better now. (ps... I am really not "that parent".  You know, the helicopter parent who hovers around, ready to land when needed.  That is so NOT me.  But this is different.  Part of my heart is now walking around without me near...  Yup, I'm just a little freaked out!)

One more back to school to go.  Bubba goes back Thursday.  "Just" 10th grade.  Thank goodness.  I think I've had all I can take for right now!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Why now?

If there is a time that I miss my best friend like crazy, it is now.  This time of the year has been tough... again.  I was blindsided last year and I thought this "Back to School" would be better.  I was ready.  It happened once.  I was prepared.

That was a lie.  It's not better.  I can't seem to get over myself.  I am struggling.  I am trying to be reflective... Why now?  What is happening that makes every day such. a. challenge?  I don't have answers.  I am definitely busy; my time is filled with prep work, union issues, meetings, etc.  There is just too much to complete in one day and I have yet to feel "caught up" since the back to school crazies have struck.  More than once over the last couple of weeks I have reacted to a situation with... I have to call Kerri.

Wait. What?  No.

Is it the wedding preparations that have been happening because her sister is getting married?  Is is the start of the school year, when we had SO MUCH to talk about and laugh about in the past?  Is it just ALL the stress that seems to be swirling around me right now?  I don't know.  Maybe it's everything or maybe it's just another wave that will ebb away, leaving me relieved when it recedes.  I'm back to "I can't".  It's not a good feeling.  It's not healthy.  And...  I'm trying to fight back.  It's not easy.

These last few days have been inexplicably dark.  But there's light, I know there is.  There has to be.  I have to believe that "this" is going to pass.

My challenge to myself.... find the JOY.  Look for it.  It's out there.

The tough love part of me is saying.... "And if it's not...  Fake it 'til you make it."     

Thinking of you, my friend.  This is still hard.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

The "Guestbook"

It's finished... Yay!  I was sweating it out there for a little while!  My cousin wanted something "different" for her wedding guestbook.  She found what she wanted on Pinterest and began looking around.  She priced them on Etsy and it would have been 150.00 for the one she was interested in.  That was way out of the budget and when you have a cousin who will try anything once, she figured "we" could pull it together.  I "surprised" her by giving it to her at her bridal shower today :) 
All these hearts had to be sprayed with an acrylic sealer
After drying, all the edges were edged with brown sharpie marker.
The hearts will be signed by their guests and dropped into a slot at the top of the frame.  The hearts fill up the space and the finished piece can be hung up after the wedding.  This heart in the mason jar?  The first of 100 that had to be edged.  Good times.

The main "ingredients"
The frame is a shadow box.  I found burlap "paper" for the background and added a strip of ribbon to cover the seam where two pieces of paper meet in the middle.  Thank goodness my husband is always around to help me out when I get in over my head.  He cut the spacers to allow for the hearts to drop smoothly into the box, along with cutting the slot in the top and creating the piece that makes it look like a bank slot; he also helped with some of the assembly.  The heart in the middle is actually sandwiched between two panes of glass.  Needless to say, it was a bit complicated and I couldn't have done it alone.  I had to laugh...when we were testing it out, the whole thing reminded me of a plinko game with the little hearts all fitting around the big heart in the center.  My favorite part... the cute little sign :)
The finished product!!
I was so nervous that it wasn't going to come together, that she wasn't going to like it, but she was THRILLED and it made her cry when she opened it :)  The groom-to-be was also very impressed and both can't wait to see it fill up on their special day.  Yay! Success!
My favorite part of the shower... Cookies! Yum :)
So, all in all, it was a good day... only one more event to be involved in before the wedding (her bridal party is planning a bachorlette party... ps. I am not a fan of these).  The big day is in September... hopefully I will remember to get a picture of the "book" when it is all filled!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Hello. It's been awhile. Again.

These last couple of weeks have been a little wild.  The day after my last post we were hit by a severe storm that torn up our area and left a path of destruction in its wake.  We are still cleaning up trees, branches, leaves, etc.  We were lucky.  No damage to our home or property.  My cousin's truck was completely crushed, thankfully their house was untouched.  We lost our power for a couple days and the internet was down for almost a week.  Again, lucky.  My aunt and uncle and my brother's family were without power for several days.  The poles and utility lines just down the street from us were such a mess, that the area was out for almost two weeks.  The storm was short... about 45 minutes, but WOW did it pack a punch!  I really wish I had pictures, but I was quite content to hang out at home.  There were so many trees and wires down, it was tough (and dangerous) to get around.    
Poor tree!  Many were just knocked over.
What I woke up to.  Branches in the driveway... Minor!
The week following the storm was a whirlwind.  I had my cousin's daughter for the weekend (and this past weekend as well!) and we celebrated my parents' anniversary.  Phew, I am happy to say it was a big success!  They were pleasantly surprised and had a nice day.  On Monday, I took my cousin's daughter to one of the mansions down in Newport and we spent a couple hours doing an audio tour and walking around the grounds.  I can't even imagine this being a "summer home" that was only lived in for 8-12 weeks out of the year.  Just mind boggling.
The "backyard" of the Elms in Newport
Part of the garden area
The rest of the week was spent working in my classroom and doing work for my district.  I actually feel quite accomplished in that area (which is good, since my kiddos start Friday!)  I am picking away at that list of Poo2Do.  It's not all going to get done, but I am still trying!

Almost ready!
To finish catching up...This past weekend we made favors for my cousin's upcoming wedding.  I realized I had better get my act together since her shower is this weekend!  I am crafting away again... and looking forward to posting pictures of what I have been working on :)

Tomorrow I am doing one last hurrah at the beach.  Another thing I can cross off on that list! Just trying to enjoy these last few days of summer before returning to reality. 

Monday, August 3, 2015

The Pressure is On!

August "Bucket List" list of Poo2Do (because, let's face it... a Bucket List is, theoretically, a list of things one would WANT to do.  This?  This is a list of things that are keeping me awake at night!)

1. Finish the office walls (including the wainscoting!)
2. Get the office put back together... Clean it up, wash the windows, and put things back where they belong
3. Kitchen... wash cupboards and deep clean floor (involves scrubbing on hands and knees)
4. Get the dining room put back together (need to finish office first!)

1. Set up classroom
2. Apple Bags and Cubby Labels
3. Welcome Back packets
4. Plan Book
5. Grade Book
6. Curriculum Alignment
7. Book Bag
8. National Board

For ME/Personal Life
1. Spend time with niece
2. Beach Day
3. Make wedding guestbook (not for me...but I will enjoy doing it!)
4. Plan and host my parent's 49th Anniversary party
5. Get together with school friends (where did the summer go?)
6. Keep to an every other day running schedule
7. Read one more book!

There's not supposed to be a comma after August, but I laughed anyway!