Thursday, July 31, 2008

Morgan's New ETSY Shop

My good buddy Morgan just emailed me to give me the link to her new ETSY shop. We talked about it a few weeks ago and I am so happy that she joined. She is currently selling jewelry and I've seen her work and it is really beautiful. However, she is not just talented at making jewelry. She painted a large wooden box in my nursery colors for my shower and I use it to keep Braden's books in. It is super cute! I always imagined Morgan opening up one of those cute little shops in a town square that sells handmade jewelry, stationary, cutom made gifts, pottery, etc. Trust me , the girl has talent! I hope that you will check her store out!

Morgan's ETSY shop, sassyclass25

Good Luck, Morgan! I know that you will be very successful!

Monday, July 28, 2008

I Can't Believe It!

Today I started back to work full time. I know, I know. BooHoo from all of you who aren't in education and don't get to experience the pure pleasure of an 8 week summer! Anyway, back to my story.....For the past 2 years we have had The Highest Aspiration Assembly that our county conducts for all of the returning Rocakdale County Public School Employees (teachers, administrators, county office personnel, bus drivers, custodians, maintenance, cafeteria workers, you get the picture...). It is kind of like a big pep rally before school starts back. We all wear school pride shirts and sit in our own designated area with our school. Some schools even have posters! Well anyway, every year I dread it simply because I know that sitting back at my school are a ton of meetings and a classroom needing LOTS ( & this year especially I do mean LOTS) of tender loving care! I mean absolutely dread it every year! Just ask Brad~ he had to listen to me complain last night. Ok...I'm off task again. Even though I dread it I am always inspired by our FABULOUS guest speakers. And this year was the best! Guess who was there? Drum roll please........
RON CLARK!!!!!!!
Ok.... to those of you who aren't teachers or aren't associated with education world in anyway or who have never seen Oprah or watched a made for TV movie starring Matthew Perry about a teacher who taught in rural NC or Harlem, NY are not impressed I'm sure. But if you are in the education field in some form or fashion I'm certain you know who Ron Clark is and I am certain that you felt a twinge of jealousy when you heard that I got to sit in auditorium packed to full capacity with other educators listening to extremely inspiring words of wisdom fly from Ron Clark's mouth! Ok.....if you still don't get how major this is, let me give you some analogies.

Bono is to music what Ron Clark is to education
Still don't get it?
Tiger Woods is to golf what Ron Clark is to education
Ok...still not?
George Clooney is to acting like Ron Clark is to education

Surely you have it now! It is that big! I first read his book, The Essential 55, my first year teaching. A lot of his philosophy is similar to my personal philosophy in teaching: Have fun with your students, but demand respect(he makes them say "yes sir/no sir" as I have always done with my students and I always show them the say respect), set high expectations, love your students and affirm who they are, when you are disappointed in them let them know and when you are proud of them cheer for them.

I must stop now... It is time for me to get ready for another busy day. Yet I will wake up renewed to touch the lives of my students and make a difference for the future! May this be a succesful, inspiring and empowering year to all of my fellow educators & their matter what form or fashion (teachers, home school moms, bus drivers, para pros, preschool teachers, etc.) you serve.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Lions & Tigers & Bears, Oh My!

Today we visited Zoo Atlanta. We left early too avoid as much of the heat as possible, which we actually did until about 11:30! We visited the Children's Petting Zoo first and Braden was actually a little timid! Shocking! Before we left he finally petted the hairiest pig I've ever seen! I don't know where you're from, but where I'm from I've never been around a pig with that much hair! We saw a pond area that was covered with this green film and at first I didn't think that there was anything in it, but there was an alligator, turtles and frogs that were camouflaged. The teacher in me screamed, "Oh my gosh! This is a perfect example of adaptations! I wish my kids could see this!" We saw the laziest kangaroos which were very cute and Braden was actually interested in them. Then we went to see the pandas. They actually moved! The last time I visited and every time that I have checked the Panda Cam they just lay frozen. But the panda actually turned to look at us and then got up and paced! We visited the elephant training which is indoors and VERY STINKY!!!! But it was amazing to see how huge the elephant actually was compared to its trainer. Next, it was onto the lion, which happened to be sunning on the rock (in my head I pictured it as Pride Rock -Lion King). The lion lifted it's head and looked up and I got some of the most incredible pictures! We got our picture taken with the Willie B. statue. When I was little Willie B. was my favorite (& everyone else's it seems). The gorillas were really neat. There was one family of gorilla's that were just hanging out on a rock. The mommy gorilla was cuddling taking a nap with one of the babies. We saw giraffes, zebras, warthogs (check out the picture- it is really weird how they eat!). Then we headed back to the petting zoo to see how Braden would do since he was fully awake and wild! He charged into the petting area and immediately began petting the goats. He even tried to follow them into their "Quiet Area"! After the 2nd trip to the petting zoo we headed to the car to unpack our picnic and then we headed home by 2:00! It was a definitely a nice experience and I can't wait to take Braden back for more zoo adventures!

Every time I leave the zoo, I amazed by the wonder that God has created. From the tiniest bird, to the ferocious lion, to the humongous elephant. And how he has equipped them all for survival. He has given them the tools they need and he has loved them and created them for a purpose. The same way he has for you and me! I know amazing isn't it that he loves us as much as everything else that he has created! I am awestruck by his majesty!

I had so many amazing pictures that I had to create a slide show!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

On the Lake

Tuesday night my brother took us out on Jackson Lake. It was soooo nice and relaxing! Braden loved riding fast in the boat with the wind blowing through his hair and he really loved swimming in the lake! Every time he would see a duck he woud start saying "ducky, ducky"! It was so cute! He also kept saying Chad's name over and sounds like "Cha". It is really cute! Braden even tried "driving" the boat! He sat in Chad's lap and Chad let him "steer" the boat!

Thanks Chad for a fun evening on the lake!

A-Z All About Me

Brandi tagged me to write information about myself from A-Z, so here goes!

A-attached or single: attached

B-best friend: Brad & Lori

C-cake or pie: blackberry cobbler

D-day of choice: Saturday

E-essential item(s): lip gloss/chap stick & pony tail holder

F-favorite color: red

G-gummy worms or bears: Sour Patch Kids

H-hometown: Conyers, GA

I-indulgence: butter pecan ice cream

J-January or July: July b/c school is out, but January because that is when Braden was born

K-kids: 1 precious boy-Braden

L-life is incomplete without: My Family, Church & God

M-marriage date: August 11

N- number of siblings: 1 incredible brother-Chad

O-oranges or apples: granny smith apples and orange juice

P-phobias or fears: snakes and losing my family

Q-quotes: "Play is the work of a child"- J. Piaget

R-reasons to smile: my family

S-season: Spring b/c of my birthday, Summer b/c school is out and the beach, Fall b/c the weather is fabulous & Winter b/c I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!

T-tag friends: Krysti & Sarah

U-unknown fact about me: I don't know....I'm pretty much an open book!

V-very favorite store: Ann Taylor Loft for myself (but lately I've found more stuff in GAP)- Children's Place for Braden though most of my time is spent in Wal-Mart!

W-worst habit: biting my fingernails (I know...nasty!)

Y-your favorite food: KING crab legs

Z-Zodiac: Aries

Sunday, July 20, 2008

My Future is So Bright.....

I've got to wear shades! Yesterday Braden "discovered" some of his old sunglasses. He hasn't worn them all summer, but yesterday he carried them around for the longest time. Finally Brad showed him how he wears his sunglasses and then he showed Braden how to put them on. He was so cute in them! He kept walking around slowly looking at everything and giggling! So precious!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Brad is HOME!!!!

Yeah! My husband is home from NC. Our reunion is short lived since he will be leaving on Sunday for another week, but Braden and I are treasuring our time with him for this very short weekend. I know that Braden has missed Brad as much as I have because the only word he has been saying since Brad got home is "Daddy" pronounced "dah-dee". He has been cuddling with Brad, sitting on his back to "ride the horsey" and reading with Brad. And he freaked out this morning when Brad had to go exchange his rental car for a new one. One of Braden's favorite things to do is watch Brad cut the grass. This morning was especially exciting since he has missed Brad so much. I pulled up several of the blinds in the house and he would run from room to room tracking Brad and saying "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy". Awww, it melts my heart! Man I love my boys! Here are several pictures of Braden watching Brad cut the grass.

Here are some picture of my boys reading last night after Brad got home.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Braden & Ace

Yesterday we went to my Aunt Joy's house to go swimmimg in her pool. My cousin's son, Ace, who is just 3 weeks older than Braden was there also. The boys were so cute swimmimg in the pool together. They are both fearless which is a little scary! They love to swim and get in the water on their own and do not want help at all! Their independence and stubborness must run in the family! Hmmm.....I wonder where they got that from! I'm completely blaming it on my Granny aka the boy's GiGi!
Braden & Ace looking at Shane (my cousin)
Aren't they cute?

I love this picture of Ace!
Water boys

Braden loves the water!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hanging out with K & K

Last night my good buds, Krysti and Kylie, came to hang out with Braden and me. We ate Pizza Hut's new tuscani pasta and talked the evening away. Braden loved all the extra attention that he got! He showed Kylie how he can roll his ball pit over and over and over! And he drenched Krysti from splashing when he was taking his bath! We really had a great time! Love you both lots!Braden walking in my flip flops and teasing Avery with her toy!

Braden and Kylie

Braden and Kysti

My New 'Do

Brad is out of town this week so I purposefully scheduled my hair appointment for today. I did this to ensure that I would have enough time get used to my new style before Brad came home, so that if I needed time to freak out I could do it without the "I told you need to leave your hair long"! need to worry because I LOVE MY NEW HAIRCUT!!!!!!!!! My stylist is so awesome! If you need her number just let me know!
Here are the opinions that I have heard so far:
My mom : "I love it! It looks kind of like the shag we had back in my day"
My dad: "I like the color" Me: "But not the cut?" My dad: "I like the color" (He prefers long hair, as does my hubby)
Me: "Chad (my brother) did you notice my haircut? Chad: Yeah. Me: Why didn't you say anything? Chad: I didn't know I needed to. Me: Do you like it? Chad: Yeah, it's good.
Lori (who stopped by tonight to see it on her way home from visiting her new nephew at the hospital): It looks good. I like it.
Me: Braden did you see mommy's hair? Braden: (touches my hair) No comment until a few seconds later..... "Car"
So what do you think? Especially you Brad because I know that you have looked!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Braden's New Playroom

Several weeks ago I painted Braden's playroom, which used to be our old office. I finally completed his pictures and artwork. I took unfinished pictures frames and painted them and added black and white 8x10s. My dad cut the glass for the picture frames. I also painted the artwork. I like the dots better than the stripes, but for now they will do. I still have a couple of little odds and ends to add and in a few months we are going to get rid of his ball pit and put a wooden table and chairs in its place, but for now here is the outcome......

Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

On vacation, while Braden was swimming in the pool he started singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. He sings it all the time, but I finally caught it on video! Just ignore the last few seconds...I thought I turned the video off! OOPS!

Monday, July 7, 2008


Braden and I went with my parents to Madeira Beach, FL last week on vacation. Madeira Beach is south of Clearwater on this strip of land that is surrounded by the ocean on one side and the bay (Tampa Bay) on the other side. It was such a nice relaxing week. We went to the beach everyday and and out to dinner every night. Braden did awesome every night at dinner (which is surprising for a 17 month old who hates sitting still for any amount of time!), but the last night he got a little annoyed with his high chair and refused to sit in it!

Braden loved the beach! We were worried that the sand or waves might bother him, but not a chance! He dove right in and never looked back. He wore a tube and floaties and he got really brave and would fuss at us whenever we would touch him in the pool or ocean. He is VERY INDEPENDENT and likes to do things on his own.

We learned a couple of things about Braden this week: He is fearless, flirty and friendly! He never flinched when the waves would hit him in the face and it didn't bother him a bit on Friday night when there were fireworks going off all around us! And I mean literally al around us! Every 15 feet down the beach someone was setting off fireworks not to mention that each small strip of beach puts on their own firework celebration and the bay shoots off fireworks also! He also went crazy every time a female would come around him! Trust me he does not discriminate when it comes to age~ he flirted with the 50 year olds and the 5 year olds! He lays his head on his shoulder, turns in circles in front of them and smiles and giggles while batting his eyelashes at them! I am not kidding! I even have it on video to prove it!

Here are some of our pictures from the beach!