Friday, October 29, 2010

Halloween Madness

It's the Friday before Halloween, which, for my students, means a day of insanity and catwalk-like presentations of their costumes. The world of kindergarten has been an exhausting place lately. I've had a crier in my room every day this week, and a terrible hacking cough has been circulating around my room, which actually makes me grateful for my overzealous immune system. I'm currently writing this in my empty classroom, surrounded by cupcake shrapnel, while the shrieks of the neighboring over-sugared first graders pierce the walls.

Overall, it was a very exciting Halloween party, complete with skeletons made from Q-tips, toilet paper mummy wraps, and a parade around the school. The funniest part about working at a school with a young staff, though, is that we were all secretly whispering about our "grown up" costumes. You know, the costumes that no child should see a teacher wearing. You know, the costumes that remind us that there is life beyond purple glue sticks, keds, and parent teacher conferences. The trend for girls seems to be to dress slutty, which doesn't exactly translate to grade-school friendly adult attire, which means most of us have a "school" costume and a "real" costume. I settled for a pair of butterfly wings with jeans and a t-shirt. My kids told me I looked gorgeous, and I was comfortable enough to endure the treat induced tantrums.

Grown up costuming, on the other hand, is another story. I'm not really into the scandalous thing, and now that I'm married, I really don't see the point. After all, Kev has this locked down. Kev has also announced that he has no interest in dressing up this year, even though it is a good friend's birthday and we will be at a bar celebrating all night. I still have no idea what to be, although I can give you a list of suggestions I gave to Kev about dynamic duo costumes for the two of us, including Coach Q and the Stanley Cup, a Ghostbuster and Slimer, and a lawn gnome and a landscaper. I'll let you figure out who would be whom in each pairing. After a hearty veto from Kev on all counts, I'll be spending the next 24 hours whipping up something awesome. Something.... I just don't know what yet...

Kev and I were out of town the last two weekends in a row, so look forward to some excellent photo recaps this weekend of our adventures.

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Itch (the good kind)

I've decided lately that I need a hobby. Or rather, I'm itching to create something tangible. Like a knitted hat, or a fabulous meal, or a series of thoughtful photographs.

Kev has always been the more creatively talented of the two of us. He took years of art classes as a kid, and has some astoundingly beautiful drawings and paintings to his name. He's also a suspiciously good athlete. He hides it well, but he is. It seems like anything that guy touches, he's good at. It's one of the many reasons I married him.

I, on the other hand, am the queen of big ideas. I love to sign up for things or start things, but I rarely finish them. This is a major problem for me, and probably contributes to my lack of really cool talents. Sure, I'm a decent teacher, and I can write things that make a bit of sense, but that's about it. Sports? I'm a disaster. Art? My kindergarteners routinely do better. Crafts? Forget it. The only thing I'm really talented at is setting a goal. Meeting it? That's another story.

I'm going home today to bake some pumpkin cookies, and this weekend Kev and I are going up to his brother's college to visit him. At said beautiful small college, we will have the chance to take lots of outdoorsy photos, which I'm hoping to frame and stick on our wall above our purdy new couches. Maybe, just maybe, if I continue with one of these options, I can start a new hobby.

I have a creative itch that I'm looking to scratch, but I fear this may take some work and practice, two things I don't like. As I'm typing this, I'm realizing I may need to start small. Maybe I'll take my camera out once a week, and I'll bake or cook something new once a week. Maybe it will get easier if I start small. Maybe I will follow through on these resolutions.

Maybe I'll even post about it someday soon....

Friday, October 8, 2010

Señor Justin Bieber

Yesterday, I was walking down the hallway when I spotted one of my first grade friends. She is a teensy Mexican girl in our transitional bilingual program, and I love her because she always has a smile on her face. I happened to notice that she had a large picture taped to the inside of her locker, something that is kind of a rarity among six year olds, since they are generally not as pop-culture savvy as some of the older students. Not this peanut, though.

Not seeing the picture, I asked my friend who was in the picture in Spanish. She didn't miss a beat. Replying back in Spanish, she said "You know him, Mrs. G. Es el señor Justin Bieber. Claro." Of course, indeed.

This makes me laugh for several reasons
1) Justin Bieber is 16. He definitely has not earned the title "Mr. Justin Bieber" yet
2) Justin Bieber is so popular that even a six year old that hasn't yet learned English knows him and loves him enough to put in his locker.
3) I missed an opportunity to ask her to sing me a Justin Bieber song.
4) Somebody signed the Justin Bieber photo in a suspiciously elementary school looking style of cursive. Perhaps a third grader?
5) She used the word "claro" which means of course. Implying that I must be really stupid for not knowing that he would be in her locker.

Wow. Just, wow. The best thing I can say about my job is that it is never, ever, boring.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Think Before You Wed

Hi All! Sorry for the lack of posting lately. Grad school has started again and I was in a bit of a pickle at work that was eating my soul. Luckily, I've given myself a mental pep talk, turned the corner, and now I'm off and running again. I promise more posts this week, but in the meantime, here are some thoughts for today.

Last weekend, I had a girls night with some of my co-workers, one of whom has been dating her boyfriend for 18 months. Somehow, we started talking about how you know if the person you are dating is the person you will marry. Represented in the group were women who had been married anywhere from 4 months to 8 years, so I feel we had a somewhat wide range of experiences to work with. I get asked all the time how Kev and I knew we were ready to get married. I'd like to tell those of you pondering that question that there was one magical moment that made me realize that I wanted Kev to be mine forever, but the truth is a lot more complicated. I can't point to any one thing that makes Kev perfect for me, but I do have a little checklist that the ladies and I came up with that may help.

10 Signs You Should Probably Put a Ring On It:
1) The person you are dating is the first person you call with good or bad news. Or irrelevant news. Or puns. Or for no reason at all.
2) Running errands with that person is something you enjoy doing. Because if you get married, you will have a lot of conversations about boring things, and need to make a lot of mundane decisions (which brand of cat litter to use, should you upgrade your toilet plunger, etc.) together.
3) You would be happy to spend the rest of your life with the person you are dating TODAY. Believe me, the person you walk down the aisle towards will not magically change with the signing of a legally binding piece of paper. When you get married, you will still have the same blessings and problems that you did before you took the plunge. Trust me on this.
4) You have a good belly laugh with that person every single day.
5) You have woken up next to each other and not been grossed out.
6) You can tease your significant other, but damn it if someone else makes a joke that hits a little too close to home, you ferociously defend that person.
7) You've talked about money and can live with the fallout from that conversation. (Side note: Kev had no idea that women's haircuts usually cost more than 20 bucks. He still fails to understand why I refuse to get my hair cut at Supercuts with me, or why I shop at stores besides Kohls for my clothes.)
8) You realize that this person will be your plus one to almost all the events you go to, and it doesn't make you cringe. This includes family events, weddings for people neither of you really like, and extremely boring and shmoozy work functions.
9) You've eaten each other's cooking and lived to tell about it.
10) You realize creating a healthy marriage and creating a beautiful wedding are not the same thing.

Now tell me, what am I leaving off the list?