Tuesday, May 25, 2010

it is finished...for now.

well, my first year of teaching has come to a close. after many tears (from both me and my kiddos), hugs, at least 15 packed boxes, and dozens of handmade good-bye cards and notes begging me not to move, it is finished. a year ago this Thursday, i was hired at the Ascension Parish job fair, where the principals hired me on the spot because they both knew that i was a perfect fit for Oak Grove. i was a nervous wreck, fresh out of grad school, overflowing with ideas and excitement. but from the moment i was hired, i began dreaming about how my classroom would be arranged, how my bulletin boards would be set up, what precious faces would walk through of my door day in and day out. although i often wondered where my energy, persistence, and motivation would come from during long weeks, i never doubted that i was born to teach. now that my first year jitters are out, my prayer for next year is to focus not as much on impressing others and myself, but just doing the best i can. God has already equipped me with everything i need to do what He's called me to. i also want to do a better job at loving my students well and figuring out how to discipline well and consistently. i'm sure that's a battle i'll continue to fight for years.

since i can't post pics of the kids online, these will have to do. i took these last summer before school started and everything was neat and orderly. i'll miss my little 15' x 25' home away from home. it, along with those 64 stinky, hormonal, but oh-so-sweet 5th graders, will always have a special place in my heart :)

here's to another ______ years of teaching!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Hello out there!!

Hellooooo!!! Welcome to my first official blog (other than Xanga... remember those?!). After a year or so of following the blogs of friends, family, and complete strangers, I'm really excited about starting my own. Now believe you me, I'd take algebra over writing any day, but after the strong encouragement from a few of my favorite people, I figured this blog would be a great outlet for the mix of emotions that I will undoubtedly go through as we pack up and settle into the new life in Nashville. It will also help chronicle the ups and downs of our journey and will also be lots of fun to look back at in 10 years!

We're less than 3 weeks away from moving day, so Brandon and I are both trying to get as much QT in as possible with our friends and family. I spent last weekend with my best friends Jenny, Natalie, and Valerie (as seen in the links above...except for Nan who doesn't have a blog...yet!) for our last big sleepover for a while. Let me tell you, these girls know how to send someone off in STYLE! They put so much time and effort into such a precious, priceless time.

They picked me up and had made a CD that had all sorts of artists from Nashville. Tears were shed instantly!! We drove to the Tanger Outlet Mall where they informed me that our first mission for sending me off to Nashville would of course be finding the perfect pair of cowboy boots! We didn't have any luck then, but had a great time shopping. (We ended up finding these online, and I got them in yesterday and LOVE them!!)

We headed back to the gilberts' humble abode and the girls gave me their first present, a precious piece of artwork (see below), and informed me that they'd be coming to visit in July!!! I can't wait already to show them around the city. Then we changed into dresses and boots and began our 30-minute photo shoot. It's a lot harder to take group pictures when there's no one there to take them! So we got creative with the 10-second timer :)

After dinner at Voodoo BBQ (of course, Nashville-inspired!), the girls had one last surprise, which was the highlight of my night. They transformed Jenny and Joel's guest room into a walk down memory lane...complete with pictures, pen pal letters, instant messenger conversations, song lyrics, my middle school cheerleading uniform, and other priceless memories. Like my mom, I'm super nostalgic, so of course the tears were a-flowin'! I can't express just how grateful I am for these girls in my life. As cliche as it sounds, God only knows where I'd be without them. They have kept me grounded for over 10 years and have been through the thick and thin, good and bad. They're truly inspiring, encouraging, and irreplaceable. I pray that my own children will have such lifelong, loyal friendships.

P.S.-- Bear with me for a little while until I get all this formatting figured out. I'm already learning how time-consuming this can get!!!

Until next time,
kate :)