Saturday, September 29, 2007

Random Bursts

I think it is funny how we have these random bursts of productivity. Well, I don't know so much about "we" but I definitely do! After hitting a small burn out, I have been so motivated to get myself organized at work. Everyday this week has been a late night (except Tuesday - I do have priorities!). Even today! I spent my entire Saturday working on the classroom. Didn't get everything on my list finished but the difference is SO much better! I actually semi-enjoyed it (sick, I know). I'll finish on Monday afternoon for sure! It is carrying over to home too. I'm going to eat a quick bite, attack this place, and finish up a few small things for work. Then - get this - an entire day off with NOTHING work related tomorrow! WOO HOO!

Tonight, I am thankful for God's gift of random productivity.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

What to do? What to do?

When I accepted a job in 1st grade, there were many things that I knew I would have to adjust to. Lower reading levels, lay off the sarcasm, more shoe tying....However, one thing that I did not expect was a class of theological discussions. So far this year, I have had to break up two heated discussions on whether Jesus was a man or just a spirit. On another day, I asked the students to tell me everything that they know about their body. The first student I called on stated that we are all made from dirt, God made us alive, and we will be dirt again when we die to be with God. Let me reiterate - 6 years old!

My district has a policy that we are under no circumstances allowed to share our own beliefs. I have also been told by administration that we are to stop any discussions about religion in the classroom. I have NEVER had my hands so tied. In the past, I could share my beliefs if asked and with the stipulation that I make it very clear that they are my own personal beliefs. The other day, I had to tell kids to stop talking about God. I had to tell them that God is for home, not school. As soon as the words were out of my mouth, I felt like I had been kicked in the stomach. I said prayers of forgiveness right then and there. In the past, I flew under the radar but this year, my assistant principal's son is in my class and he happily shares his day with his parents. There is no way to fly that low.

How should I address this without getting in trouble yet, not kill my conscience?

Saturday, September 22, 2007


I was tagged by Mindi (and indirectly by Erin) to share eight little known, random facts about myself. This was hard. Here you go!

1. My new favorite colors are green and brown. I can't get enough of them.

2. When I go to the public library, I never check out less than ten books. Most of them are picture books but when you get in the double digits, they are still heavy. Currently, I have 21 items checked out. Thankfully, I can splurge at the library and not feel guilty about it!

3. I have this obsession with counting. I count everything! Especially stairs. There are 19 leading up to my apartment. Even though I know this, I still count every time whether I realize it or not. You think that I'm kidding but go look at the comment I left on Erin's tagged blog. I had to count the doctors. It's sad!

4. If I could have any job in the world, I would be a full time biblical researcher or write bible studies. It would combine my love of learning, teaching, and bible.

5. Female roles in fairy tales are a soap box for me. Ironically, I still love them. My favorite fairy tale of all time is "Beauty and the Beast". Yea for a girl with a brain and willingness to see beyond the exterior! Being nice and pretty will only get you so far in life. Good lessons for girls (and boys) to know.

6. I am not naturally organized at work. I have to put time and effort into it. Right now, there is no time and the classroom looks like a disaster. I want to pull my hair out. Now that would help the mess!

7. I'm thinking about taking a trip by myself within the next year. I don't know when or where but I'm seriously entertaining the thought.

8. I have recently used packing tape as pest control in my apartment. It worked. Can you say Redneck?

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Calming Rumble

On Tuesday nights, I am attending a women's bible study that is studying Esther. Beth Moore is the teacher and even though we are only two weeks in, I have been so blessed by it! Last night, I stood with 4,000 women and sang "Held". Chills.....

I was very excited to hear she was working through Esther this semester mainly because I wasn't ready to finish Daniel last spring. Thankfully, Esther is close to that same time so I feel like this is a woman focused part two. Another reason that I'm excited about this study is because one of my favorite verses/scenes in the Bible comes from Esther. At the end of 4:15, Mordecai looks at Esther and basically says, "Look, God is going to do this with you or without you. But stop and look at where life has brought you!" Then he says the most daunting and uplifting words available. "How do you know that you have not been given a royal position for such a time as this?"

For such a time as this.... These words encourage me and haunt me to my core. Talk about humility! We spent a long time talking about how our past and current situations cannot be separated from our future destiny. How no hiding or running away can change every step God has led you to take. I won't say much more for Erin's sake.

I have noticed that there is something very different about this move to Houston. I told Mom that something feels very temporary about this year. I'm not sure if it is personal, professional, spiritual, or geographical. Something is not quite settled with me. There is a quiet rumble deep within. The odd thing about it is that I am really OK with it. I feel like there is something on the horizon and I have been placed here for such a time as this. Now I just need to turn my eyes to the one who directs my steps.

Monday, September 17, 2007

A Little of This and a Little of That

Just some random thoughts. Enjoy!
  • I recently had pest control come for ants. Even though they are mostly gone, I keep feeling phantom bites. I think that ants are like lice - they make you itch when they aren't there.
  • After three and a half weeks, one of my students still can't call me Ms. LaMore. She calls me Ms. Noah. She can get it if I stop and correct her but Ms. Noah is my default name in her little mind. I hope this does mean a lengthy rainy season....
  • No matter how cool the playground equipment is, frogs and cicada skins are always more interesting.
  • It's time to start writing again! Anyone have any suggestions on what you might eventually want to read about in short story form?

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Adult Moments

I think that there are many moments over the past few years that I can look at and see myself becoming an adult. Some are not so great (like looking at your budget some months) and others are such fun (like taking big trips you have been saving for and planing over time). This week, I turned couple more pages of realization of adulthood.

We are currently interviewing candidates for a new 1st grade position. When did I become old enough and responsible enough to decide someone's professional future!? I've never done that before! It has been an interesting process to sit through.

Of the two pages I've turned, the biggest for me to wrap my mind around is that I am now officially saving for retirement! I sat down with a financial advisor yesterday and started planning for my future. How crazy is that!? All I kept thinking was "I'm actually about to start investing money. This is a big deal!" I know that retirement is a long way off but I would rather be ready for it the smart way rather than play catch up later. Starting early is a great thing!

It's funny how even though I don't feel like an adult most days, I find myself doing grown up things. From what I hear, that is all that life is - never feeling like an adult but making responsible choices. I guess we all just baby stepping our way into our adult selves. I can handle that!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Hobo Teacher

I've found a blog that I have really grown to enjoy. It is called Hobo Teacher. The premise is that teachers are underpaid and dog tired but love their jobs. The teacher who keeps up this blog shares accounts of things that happen in his high school classroom throughout the year. Honestly, it cracks me up! I am learning to have more appreciation for my six year olds. At least I can tell what they're doing! Check it out - It will make you laugh (well, it will make teachers laugh). Enjoy!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Revelation in Church

I was in worship this weekend and I had a revelation. Somewhere along the way, I lost my joy. Sure, there have been moments of brilliant laughter or even happy moments in time, but overall, I am not joyful anymore. I'm not sure when it happened but here I am. I remember when I was able to find the silver lining in any cloud no matter how gray. Truth be told, I've not been that person in a while. I've turned into someone that I can't say I'm too thrilled with. I complain more than I used to and I'm always looking forward to what comes next. You know, the grass is greener..... As a result, I feel different in myself. Not as sure as I once was. More timid and less confident. One of my goals for this year is to refocus and return to joy. I want to be more of who I was and less of who I am. I want to be joyful and thankful for the here and now. I want to find the good in all things and all people. I want to appreciate this exact moment. I want to be upbeat and fulfilled in this place in life.

The world needs more Pollyannas.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

And All the People Rejoiced (yea!)

So today was not all that great but I wanted to share my silver lining. Next Tuesday is the first night of Beth Moore. I had a training scheduled that afternoon. Notice the second word of that last sentence - HAD. That's right, it has been canceled! WOO HOO! I wouldn't have missed bible study but I would have been stressed not knowing where I was going and cutting it so close. I'll have to go to the training the next Tuesday but at least I'll be familiar with where I am going. I AM SO EXCITED! Yea for silver linings!


I need major prayers. Today starts the second week of school and I cannot tell you how overwhelmed and stressed out that I feel. My stomach is in knots all of the time. I'm not sleeping at all due to the constant list of things I've yet to do running through my head. Last night was the worst so far. I've been awake for well over an hour and it is still way too early for anyone to be awake. (Blogger time shows the wrong time zone so don't go off of that to see what time I am up.) I feel like I can't catch up at all. Over the past weekend, I probably put in about 6-7 hours of work and I still feel so guilty for everything that I didn't get done. I very much feel like a first year teacher but so much worse. I shouldn't be thinking this so early on but if things don't get better, I don't think I will teach again after this year. I love the students and I love the curriculum but this is not any kind of quality of life. It has GOT to get better. It just has to......