February 26, 2012

Birthday and Weekend Update

My favorite day of the year happened on Friday - my birthday! It was the slowest day ever until 3:30 and then it went by super fast. I didn't even have time to check Facebook all day. (that's what you really know its been a busy day!) I came home and my parents were already on their way downtown.  We had decided that my birthday weekend was the perfect time for them to come stay the weekend with us for the last time.  We all went to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants, Rose Angeli's which is on my "Chicago To-Do List" for before we move and it was just as I remembered. While I didn't love my dinner I got Chocolate fondue which came with a candle in it. (Thanks Dad for telling them it was my birthday!)

When we got home we opened presents (I love presents- haha!). Thanks Mom, Dad, Judy and Mark for my gifts! Thanks to Jason too who surprised me with a pair of Toms shoes I have wanted and a Coach purse.  Man he really pays attention to what I want!!

Saturday we had breakfast at a local breakfast joint them headed downtown to be tourists.  We did some returns along State St.  My dad and Jason hit up Garretts. We went to the bean (which never gets old!) and went to Macy's to exchange my Coach purse. Long story short...the one he bought I loved but the straps were too short. I found another that was on sale about 75% off and is just PERFECT. I am sooooo excited. :) We were going to go to the Sears Tower which is another on my "Chicago To-Do list" since I haven't been since I was about ten but we ran out of time.

It was a wonderful birthday weekend.  Thanks Mom and Dad for coming and making my day and weekend special.  Thanks to my wonderful husband for knowing just what I wanted for my birthday when I didn't even have to ask for it and thanks to all of you for all the birthday wishes via text, email and calls!

To continue on about my weekend...After all the festivities, Jason and I went to church. Another amazing sermon at Willow. Have I mentioned how much I am going to miss that church?!  Then I came home and worked on schoolwork.  Today we slept in (LOVE having the option to go to church on Sat nights!) and then I spend a  majority of the day working on my portfolio.  I treated myself with a break with a trip to Ulta and Old Navy but quickly learned that I was too late and both were closed when I got there.  So the rest of my night was more schoolwork and portfolio.  I didn't get as much done as I wanted but am making progress!  One week from tonight and I'll be DONE!!!

Two more other updates are that 1.) We gave Same his trial of meds for the road trip and it was a bust. While it certainly affected him, he just became more needy and more alert with some drowsy eyelids.  We were instructed to give him a little more of the pill if that happened but I am trying to decide what to do.  I don't feel right giving him meds but also know he gets SO nervous in the car. (poops, pees, cries) 2.) We found out our townhouse in CO won't be available.  While we were very disappointed to learn the news, we quickly realized that God still has his hand in this and has opened our eyes to other possibilities.  Needless to say, I will be very relieved once we know where we'll be living in just over a month.

Last update of the weekend is that my cousin got engaged today...Congrats Amy! Couldn't be happier for you and Troy!

Thanks again for all who shared in my birthday! Hope you all had a wonderful weekend as well! Countdown is at 3 weeks until I'm done student teaching...but only one until my portfolio is due and two until my paper's due and portfolio is reviewed.  It's going to fly by!

LOL where's Stephanie and Jason??

Dad, Mom, Me and Jason :)

February 23, 2012

I'm Surviving... :)

Just thought I'd take a quick minute to blog since I miss it so much!  I'm actually doing really well given the circumstances of all that's going on right now.  So either God is really good and giving me peace or next week is going to be nuts and I'm going to have so much anxiety I won't be able to function. I think it is probably a little bit of both.  But just the fact that I think I can take a couple minutes out to write says that I'm doing okay!

Today I survived my "midterm" assessment by my NLU supervisor.  She has been observing me the past few weeks while I've attempted to teach. It is nothing that any of my colleagues have been doing but it's just as challenging in a completely different way.  Quite honestly, I feel like it's challenging in all the wrong ways.  However, I am so thankful for my faith because I honestly have no idea how I'd have gotten this far without God at my side and knowing that there is some reason (which I may never know) for being in the situation that I am.  But hey...just 3 weeks and one day more and since we're off on Casmir Pulaski (gotta love being in Chicago!) it's really only another 15 days.  But who is counting, right?

Everything with "the move" really still hasn't hit me.  It completely consumes my life and is pretty much all I talk about to almost everyone but it still hasn't hit me.  I am scheduling "last dates" with friends and have our going away party planned.  We've taken Sam to the vet to get his meds to help his long drive go better. (he does NOT travel well).  Jason has started packing boxes and has ordered the rental truck.  God willing, we are signing a lease in the next week or so (or will be finding a new location/lease to sign. Lots of things are moving right long but it really hasn't sunk in yet that we'll be gone in 36 days. OH MY GOSH.  36 days...maybe it will start to hit me now.

Thank you for all your prayers thus far with my portfolio and finishing up my student teaching.  Like I said...I totally feel God's presence through all this and pray it will continue through next Sunday night.

February 20, 2012

My Presidents Day Update

I am so thankful to have today off. I found out on Saturday that my portfolio is due a week earlier than the original date so I have two weeks to get everything completed. Portfolio Review Day is March 10...I will be celebrating like crazy if I pass. This quarter has been so hard with student teaching (especially with my placement) and my portfolio being due and the paper we have to do for our student teaching...and moving in 6 weeks. There is light at the end of the tunnel!! Two weeks and my portfolio is done. Three weeks and my paper will be done and portfolio will be reviewed. And in four weeks I'll be done student teaching! Then I have two weeks off to pack, spend time with my wonderfully supportive husband and see friends and family before we head west!! Please pray for me especially these next two weeks and on March 10 when my portfolio will be reviewed! Happy Presidents Day!!

February 15, 2012

Cooper and daycare

When we got Cooper our neighbors also got a St. Bernard puppy and cooper and him became best of friends. At first he was bigger than Macallan but as time passed Macallan quickly grew to double the size of Cooper. It's quite a laugh to watch them play because Cooper definitely thinks he can still take down his best friend in any wrestling match and does all he can to take him down. (picture little 50 lb. Cooper taking down a 100 lb. St. Bernard.)

After our terrible boarding experience at Happy Tails and Trails in November I have been hesitant to bring Cooper anywhere for daycare or boarding. I was trying to wait until we moved so we could find a place we liked and use forever. But now with me working everyday we had to find somewhere we could take him the weeks Jason travels for work. Macallan goes to daycare and loves it, so I thought its be good to bring Cooper where he'd already know a dog and the owner. (we brought him on a tour where he checked out the facility and met the owners withus).

Jason brought him in last Tuesday for his trial day. We were told if he didn't do well, we would get a call. 8 hours later I picked him up and he came bouncing into the waiting area, tail wagging, tongue flailing. :)

Needless to say he had a blast. His buddy Macallan was exhausted as well so I imagine they had a very playful day together. Cooper was such a sweet loving dog Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday! Last Wednesday I took him for a run and Thursday Jason brought him to the dog park but only for 25 minutes...and he STILL got tired! It's my dream dog...loving, sweet, loyal and still playful, just not an attack dog the second I walk in the door.

Goldendoodles just have SO much energy...I'm so thankful for daycare for him to get his energy out.

I took him again yesterday because they're running a great promotion now that allows us to take him five times before it starts to break the bank. I'm so excited for cooper to have a LONG chance to play and for us to have a break from his crazy playfulness and energy. :)

February 7, 2012

Rings and a Cat

After being married for 17 months I finally got my rings soldered together and I'm wondering why I waited so long to do it. I have a certain someone to thank for helping me realize that I wanted to do it.

After I got married,I did some research on the Internet and asked around and all I heard was "don't do it!!" The main reason I heard was because if I ever wanted to wear just my wedding band I obviously couldn't once they were permanently joined together.

Well a few weeks ago I got out of the shower (the only time I take my rings off) and couldn't find my engagement ring anywhere. I usually put them on the counter and my wedding band was sitting right where I left it. However, my very playful cat, Sam, was also on the counter next to my wedding band with a sly grin on his face. After looking all over the counter, floor and everywhere in between I finally figured out it must have been knocked into the sink by Sam and fell down the drain.

I'm sure Jason was thrilled to be woken up by me asking him to take apart all the pipes and plumbing in the bathroom all before I had to leave in the next 15 minutes. Great guy that he is, he had the pipes apart and had my ring back on my finger in about five minutes. This situation surely only grew Jason's already profound love that he has for Sammie! (if you didn't catch the sarcasm...he's not a huge fan of my cat:)

Through this early morning experience I realized how much it bothered me going to work without my rings on so figured I'd never have a reason to wear just one at a time and made the appointment to have them soldered. Also while that was being done, I had them re-dip them (I'm sure there's a better word for that) and of course they cleaned them so it's like I have a brand new ring. My rings always stay together and they fit much better now so they're no longer flipping all the time. I didn't realize how annoying that was until I got them joined.

Moral of this story...when you have a playful kitty who follows you everywhere and bats around just about anything and everything...put your rings somewhere safe that he can't get them.

February 5, 2012

Student Teaching Beginning Week 5 of 10

I cannot believe I've been student teaching for 4 weeks already and am about to begin week number 5.  It's been a pretty amazing month thus far.  I was originally in a primary self-contained classroom with eight students, seven with autism and one with downs syndrome.  It was my ideal placement minus the grade level since I really want to work with middle or high school. After about 2 minutes in the classroom I fell in love with each student and realized that teaching kids with special needs is definitely my calling.  I'm so excited to teach special ed! Plus, now after spending 4 weeks in the primary classroom I am definitely more open and excited about the opportunity to work with elementary aged kids. :)

On Thursday I was switched into a different classroom, now I'm with 6th, 7th and 8th grade in a cross-categorical room., so it's a completely different experience!  I feel like I'm at a bit of a loss with only 6 weeks left and 4 of those weeks supposed to be me teaching the class on my own...plus the papers I have to write for my seminar but I am thankful for the switch.  Very thankful...I can go into more details once this experience is done and I have landed my first teaching job but for now I'll leave it at that.  What I just blogged about and how tired I have been...with this new switch, I'm hopeful that I won't be nearly as emotionally drained at the end of each day.  I'm very excited for the next 6 weeks to see how much more I can learn through this experience! :)

Fitting it all in

I miss blogging so much. I know not many people read it but I love capturing all that's going on with my life plus I love how writing helps me process my thoughts.  There's been no time lately and I've been having a hard time adjusting to the early mornings and crazy schedule.  We have such a limited amount of time here so I have filled my schedule to the brim meeting with just about everything.  I have friends I want to see (each about 5 times!).  Family I want to spend time with (also spending lots of quality time with each).  Chicago things I want to do (I actually have a Chicago "to-do before we move" list). Groupons and YouSwoops that need to be used up. Willow Church services to attend as many times as possible. And just about anything else you can think of.  All of this on top of adjusting to working every day all day (I know...woe is me, but it's been over a year since I had that schedule and it takes time to adjust. :) A CRAZY wild dog who needs an hour at the dog park every night unless I want him barking, biting and jumping on me all night. (I thought after a year his energy levels would go down...wishful thinking).  I'm still trying to cook dinners, do the laundry, clean the condo and do all the wife responsibilities that I have been very proud to do as a wife. I started a new devotional (that I LOVE!) which is helping me stay on track with my quiet time with God, but obviously this takes time too.  And through all this, I've realized I HAVE to have my full 8 hours of sleep at night which means I have to be in bed by 9:30...lights out at 10:00 so I can set my alarm for 5:45.  There is just not enough time in the day to do it all.  Thankfully, I have a wonderful husband who is helping me realize I can't do all the "wife" things while also working (for free!) full time and trying to do everything I want to do before we move.  I just feel we have such a limited time here and want to get everything in that I possibly can. I know in only 8 weeks I am going to be all alone in CO, probably without a job and all this free time wishing I could be with friends and do all the stuff I want to fit in before I leave...so I MUST do it all now. If only I didn't require soooo much sleep every night, all my problems would be solved. Wouldn't it be nice if it was that easy? :)