Sunday, August 30, 2015

end of summer train ride | a little video

This week was good...long and exhausting, but good. I have a sweet group of fourth graders and our days have been filled with team building and learning all of our expectations. I'm looking forward to starting into our curriculum this week and getting into our daily schedule. 

We got to spend yesterday with my sister and her two little boys. Everdeen can barely contain her excitement when her cousins come to play! She literally squeals with delight! And me too...there's nothing like sister time :) I feel like the last days of summer are upon us so we're trying to squeeze the last drops of that care free summer feeling before fall graces us with her presence. 

Sunday, August 23, 2015

the night before 4th grade

I've kind of felt off all day...even though I went back to work over a week ago it never really feels like I'm truly back until the kids walk through the door on that first day. I guess it felt like summer was really over...mostly because there was a cool crisp breeze today and it was hinting ever so slightly at fall. 
my home away from home

Tomorrow is my ninth first day of teaching...and I still get nervous. I try to remember that the kids are way more nervous than me. Once they are in my room though, it will all be fine, just like riding a bike! The first day of school is filled with so much anticipation and excitement...and to make it even more special I've been practicing a song on my ukulele just for them.  Some of them will think they got the 'weird' teacher and some of them will most likely think I'm the next Taylor Swift. Either way, I hope they always remember their first day of fourth grade.  

I felt like I had to get everything done TODAY...because for the next nine months my life is that of an exhausted school teacher. My house is clean, my laundry is done, my first day of school outfit is picked out. My toes are freshly painted because we all have those students who touch our feet or shoes and think we don't notice... All the things that I haven't had to think about for the past three months are all tumbling through my brain right now.  

So now I'm off to make myself fall asleep at the same time as my three year old. So long late night Netflix sessions. Tomorrow will be filled with newly sharpened pencils, crisp clean notebooks, and new shoes. It's going to be a good day :)

Monday, August 17, 2015

the night before preschool

I can't believe our baby girl is starting preschool tomorrow.  Next week she'll probably be driving and then heading off to college. How is it possible for time to go so fast?
We took our family walk this evening and talked about all the fun things she'll get to do. She's most excited about playing with her new friends. I reminded her to eat her lunch, take her nap(hopefully without undressing...she's been doing that a lot lately!), and to of course listen to her teacher.  I know she is going to do so well...but there is always a part of me that will worry and hope she has a good day, that the other kids will include her and play with her, that her teacher will like her.  Each of these milestones is so bittersweet- I of course want her to keep growing and moving forward, but at the same time, she is still my little baby and I want her to fit in my arms forever. 
(I love this little girl with every ounce of my being. She already makes me so proud)  

Today we had our district rally...the entire school district comes together and hears inspirational speeches for the new year, waves pom poms, and laughs at jokes only teachers would find remotely funny :)  We always leave feeling excited and ready to tackle a new year.  Since becoming a mother, teaching has taken on a whole different meaning for me.  With Everdeen going off to school I know what it's like to be on the other side of things. Hoping that she's cared for and loved. Hoping that she isn't forgotten about. Hoping that her teachers can see all the wonderful things that Martin and I see. When my new students walk in the door next week I can honestly tell their parents that we will have a great day, that I will take good care of them, and that I will do everything in my power to make sure that they have a beautiful learning experience. 

Tonight I held Everdeen a little closer, sang our repertoire of lullabies (La La Lu, Can't Help falling in Love, Moon River, and La Vie En Rose). She softly sang along and told me again about all her new friends she would play with tomorrow. I think she's going to be just fine :) 

Wish us luck tomorrow morning...three of us having to get out the door on time will be an adventure for sure :)  

Saturday, August 15, 2015

and then the rain came

Yesterday evening, as we were sitting on the front stoop watching Everdeen frolic around the yard, the skies opened up and the rain came. We had such a rainy start to our summer...but we really haven't had a big rainstorm since then.  Sometimes you just need a good rain wash away the day to connect you back to nature and to feel like you don't have a care in the world. 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

and just like that...

Summer vacation is over. Tomorrow is my first official day back to work. I am so forever grateful that my job allows me to have a few months off, especially now that we have Everdeen. Before having a little one, my summers were about teaching summer school, laying by the pool, and binge watching Netflix :) Now, they are about being with my little girl 24/7.  Watching her blossom and experiencing everyday moments with her that I don't necessarily get to see when I'm off to work. 

Today, we took it nice and easy, the way a summer day should be. After Martin got home from work we drove to the park and Everdeen got to ride the little train. She was in heaven! She stepped up onto the stool to give the lady her 75 cents and sat patiently on the bench waiting for the conductor to call us all aboard! I just don't think I'll ever grow tired of watching her experience new things. 
What I really wanted was a picture of the two of us together, symbolizing our summer together...but you know how that goes with a three year old.  This is what 99.99% of all of our pictures look like lately. But I guess that's okay, because it will just remind us of the stage of life we were in at that moment. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

hello august

I realized that I hardly wrote at all during the month of July, but to be completely honest, I'm glad July is over.  Maybe it was the two full moons in a month or the never ending heat that made July more challenging than I'd like.  I feel like our family has had a lot of growing pains over the past month...which always make me uneasy.  I usually am just fine if things stay the way they are. But I know in life it's inevitable to avoid change and I also know that change makes us grow and stretch which keeps us moving and feeling alive. 
These past few weeks I've felt like I've been up and down emotionally. Part of me doesn't want to admit that I report back to work next week, yet at the same time I'm feeling motivated and ready to start a new year. I've been in and out of my school the past few weeks getting my classroom set up.  I love to go in early when no one else is's completely peaceful and I can get so much accomplished. My mom has been a life saver helping me put up bulletin boards and organizing my thoughts. This week though, I began to feel my anxiety creep up a bit as all of the first of the year information was being sent out...sign up for this class and don't forget this all day's amazing how you can go from literally having nothing to worry about to a whole heck of a lot. I've been working hard all summer on new ideas and preparing myself for the start of the year. Last year was my first year back in fourth grade after teaching primary for five years so there was a new learning curve to accept. This year though, I've got it :) I really can't believe this will be my ninth year teaching.  

But July has been more than just mentally preparing myself for school. The end of July brought my husband a second job. It's one of those situations where the only solution seems to be a less than ideal one. But sometimes you have to do what you have to do to survive. It's been such an adjustment becoming a single parent on the weekends again. We have been pushed and stretched to our breaking points...emotionally, financially, and mentally. But we are surviving and we are learning to make the most of what we have...especially our limited time together as a family. We are learning that sometimes life has to take a little short cut until you can get to where you really want to be. I know someday we'll look back at this time in our lives and see how it made us stronger, how it didn't break us (too much ;), and how we were able to move forward. 
This little one makes everything worth it :)

So, with that I am very much looking forward to August. I'm looking forward to a new season, a fresh start. I'm looking forward to making today better than yesterday...even if that is simply not forgetting the clothes in the washing machine for a week or making Everdeen a sandwich cut out in the shape of a dinosaur. Whatever I can do to make life feel as normal as possible.  And if you made it through my short novel of life, thank you for reading along :)

Okay, August...don't disappoint. 

Saturday, August 8, 2015

my child eats basil like it's candy

Basil plants are flourishing which is a sure sign that we are deep into summer.  I love love pesto and I think I've passed that gene onto Everdeen.  In fact, every time we pass the basil plants she stoops down and without even using her hands takes a bite out of a basil leaf and loudly says, "Mmmmmm!" haha :) 
In honor of summer and in honor of my three year old liking basil like it's some amazing type of candy that grows in the ground, here is my favorite pesto recipe. It truly only takes minutes to whip up and we usually eat off of it all week.  I really want to make up several batches to freeze so we can taste summer all winter long. 
1/2 cup Pine Nuts
1 tsp coarse salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 Tbsp minced garlic
4 cups loosely packed basil leaves
4 oz Asiago Cheese
2 oz Parmesan Cheese
1 cup olive oil

Blend ingredients together in a food processor (scraping the sides as needed) adding the olive oil last.  Enjoy and let me know if you make some in honor of these last weeks of summer! 

Sunday, August 2, 2015


"a portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2015."

Everdeen Kate: You have been excitedly practicing your violin alongside your daddy :)

Linking up with Jodi