Happy Halloween and Election ’08

One perk of being the Concessions Manager at the school: free leftover popcorn. Perfect for making popcorn  balls for Halloween! All I had to buy was the marshmallows for 1.89. It sure beats three $4 bags of candy! But, the kids don’t seem to agree (barring the pair that just rejoiced when I handed them the popcorn ball) because I’ve heard several moans and groans. [How Rude! Note to self: coach your kids on the proper responses, etc. for trick or treating!]

The election is heating up. That’s probably an understatement since it’s really been going on for two years! But, I’ve really been getting into it over the past few months. When the Obama craze was in full swing this summer, I decided to read “Audacity of Hope” via my car CD player while I traveled to and from Hays. He was very fair and balanced in everything he said. And, he covered nearly all the issues. But, he didn’t really stand up for one side or the other. He just ruminated on both and gave credence to each. I don’t trust the man. His convictions are quite unknown. His associations are questionable at best (Alinsky, Wright, and Ayers). His experience in executive leadership positions is weak. Go McCain!

As a 6th grader (and the nerdy editor of our school-wide newspaper “The Breeze”-in ’96, I got into elections for the first time. Of course, I wanted Dole to win. He’s a Kansan! And, I nearly cried as I watched Clinton give his acceptance speech. Then, I was mostly fascinated with the process and the concept of one person leading our country. Now, three elections later, I’m feeling a lot of urgency, not only for my own beliefs, but for our country. McCain MUST win. Secular progressives cannot be in charge of our nation. I try not to let the forwarded e-mails influence me much, and I always check facts, authors, affiliations, and biases I find in any article I read. McCain MUST win. I wish a lot of people were reading my blog, so I could convince them to vote for McCain. :)

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Football!

Since the third grade, I’ve had a fascination with football. Blame it on being a tomboy. I would play football at recess with the boys and our third grade teacher, Mr. Steinert (the first one to make me wish to be a teacher!). I felt that the girls were boring! So, my early training came in the form of fights between the boys from which I learned terms such as “blitz” and “running back.” I was usually the running back, and my shining moment came in 4th grade. Mr. Steinert always held a flag football game down at the High School football field so our parents could come and watch us play. I was on the yellow team, and Mr. Steinert handed me the ball and I ran it for a sixty-yard touchdown! Crystal and I were always the only girls that played, and it was fun!

Then, my fascination continued throughout Jr. High and High School, watching the Packers with Grandpa or my brother, attending youth group Super Bowl parties, and always watching NFL Sunday football. In college, I studied the roster for cute, tall boys of course, but I also memorized numbers and yelled as much as possible. (And stormed the field when Sterling broke the 2-year losing streak my sophomore year.)

This evening, the high school team hosted the last regular season game against our rivals from the neighboring county. The game could have been the last, and we knew the team was going to be tough. But, my kids (my Junior and Senior students!) got out there and mowed the grass with the other team 62-16! It was an exciting game, and they all played very well! I loved watching my friends play in college and high school, but nothing compares to watching my students play! This was something I didn’t see coming as a teacher, but I am really enjoying watching these kids in all their activities, especially football. Maybe this is a taste of what it’s like to have children of your own. . .

Anyway, since we won this evening, it’s off to Quivira Heights! I hope they continue to play this well! They’ll really need it to beat the next team! Go T-Wolves!

Organize what?

I’m feeling much better! I have way more energy right now than I’ve felt for the past few weeks. And I think most of that energy comes from two places. Church was great this morning. I love my ladies’ Sunday School class! I’m the youngest by about 15 years, but that’s okay. They’re so encouraging. It was good to be back at Antioch after missing the past two Sundays when I was gone for family visits. I’m so thankful God helped me find such a jewel in that sparsely populated, southern-most part of the county. Almost everyone was there this morning, it seemed, and it made me feel like I was with my family! I guess that’s a good thing, huh?

Another reason I’m energized is that I finally figured out a system for paperwork in my classroom today. You think it sounds silly, but paperwork is one thing they don’t warn you about in your college ed. classes. And I despise paperwork! I’ve always considered myself a fairly organized person (especially as a fourth grader organizing my books by author and creating an inventory and check out list for them) but once I became a teacher I soon discovered that I’m NOT organized. Andi, my colleague who’s been at it for 15 years tells me that it just takes time. Apparently. It is really difficult to organize five different sets of handouts, notes, tests, graded assignments, etc. I’ll take any ideas my teacher friends have to share about the best way to do it.

Home sick

I stayed home sick today. Being sick is not fun. I hate not doing anything! But, I think my tendency to overdo things is the reason I got sick. C’est la vie. Since I’m weak and achy today, I hope tomorrow turns into a productive day at school. I’ve been telling myself for at least three weeks that I’ve got to get ahead in planning my lessons. Then, I might be able to find time to write the three papers I’m trying finish before the end of the year. Speaking of Master’s classes, I wonder which courses will be offered this summer. Is it bad that I’m looking forward to those without having completed three other courses? Whew, I’ve got a lot of work to do! I think I’ll go recharge with a nap and then try to read for Approaches to Literature or 19th Century Women’s Brit. Lit. There. I have a plan. Happy Birthday today to my Big Little Brother, Jonathan. He’s 25! :)

The Third Year

After reading the blogs of acquaintances for several months, I’ve finally decided to jump into the blogosphere. I don’t feel like I have as many cool stories to share about my children or my marriage (both of which do not yet exist), but I LOVE to write. So, what better place to write than at a place called wordpress? I’ll try not to bore you with the mundane details of my life, but then again, what seems mundane to you just might be very important to me. For intstance, my messy desk at school. That’s mundane. But right now, it’s a big deal to me. The conglameration of papers, pens, leftover copies of assignments, and students’ late work suck me into a whirlwind of anxiety and confusion every time I sit down at my desk. My goal for this weekend is to clean it off completely and organize the mess!

This year at school has been my worst so far. Andrea told me her third year was the worst, too. So, I hope this is the worst for me. If not, I’m not so sure High School education is the thing for me. I’m feeling inept, intolerant, and inadequate for the job these days. I hope it’s just the third year thing. Because I really love the opportunity to have a positive impact on students’ lives. Very few jobs provide this opportunity to help shape the minds of those who influence and contribute to our culture and economy every day. Somewhere under all this frustration, I know I hold the belief that I am doing something that is worthwhile. It’s just the third year. Right, God?