Sunday, August 29, 2010

Happy 200!

This is the 200th post on Delightful Surprises! Should I bake a chocolate cake and make it a party?

First week was good! All my students are getting home to their respective families without any problems which is VERY successful! I had one student throw up and my gag reflexes kicked in, but I made it without following suit! Also successful! I'm getting this question asked by only one student: "Teacher, what's your name again?" It makes me want to laugh every time!

The only thing that was not fun AT ALL this week was having swollen feet at the end of the day. I mean - I'm not even pregnant!! :o)

Since I've started school. Running has not been as great. Yes, I'm still going out and making an effort. I'm having to adjust to a new schedule and I also have to figure out how much I should eat and when. It's not necessarily been a breeze and it's frustrating, but this too shall pass.

I've registered for two half marathons. One in January and the other in February. Excitement abounds!!

That's all for now. I have to manage my time very wisely these days.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


This took TWO WEEKS! Are you ready to see it? I'm so excited to share this with you!

Okay - and before I show you the pictures....I have one more thing to share. This past Friday we had meet the teacher. And I wasn't sure what all I was supposed to do or say because it's my first one, but it went over SOOOO well.

So here are the after pictures:

This is to the right of the door when you walk in. I still need to get some fabric to cover up the storage space under these desks.
Bulletin Boards: Expectations and Star of the Week
Things on the table: Dry erase markers, Pencil holders, Trays to turn in their work, restroom baskets that will hold paper towels, soap and hand sanitizer, and other trays for misc. supplies

The same wall on the other side of the white board.
The Word Wall and the Computer Center
There's also a shelf that stores the work we'll do the upcoming week(s), the casitas, etc.

This is entire wall on the right when you walk in.

This is the wall parallel to the door.
This is my favorite spot. The 'Read'wood forest and the R/LA, Science and Math Centers
I got the tree at a Hallmark that was closing down at College Station.

Inspiration Station (where inspiration quotations and art will be displayed)
Stellar Work! (where the kid's stellar work will be displayed!)The yellow table is where we will have small group instruction once it's cleared off. :o)
My desk. The one and only time it will be this orderly!

This picture isn't letting me move it so it's out of order...It's the wall parallel to the windows. It's the calendar wall.

The big picture of the back wall.

There you have it! That's the tour of my classroom. I'm ready for Monday - I think... :O)
I'd appreciate your prayers for the upcoming year!!
Excitement abounds!


It's true that it takes a village to raise a child. It also takes a village to get a teacher ready for school. I don't know that what I would have done without my family and friends!

I want to be sure to let everyone know that my favorite thing about my classroom is not necessarily the fact that it looks AWESOME (oh - and it does!). My favorite thing about my classroom is that when I walk in I think of my family and friends who helped me put it together! I'm INCREDIBLY BLESSED!

First, my mom and younger brother came. Mom cleaned EVERYTHING - even the unifix cubes that my students will use for math and science. My brother Tim helped me put the bulletin boards together and he also hung up all the posters that are out of my reach - which is practically every poster. HAHAHA!! My brother Aser came by one day and helped me punch out the pre-cut letters for the bulletin boards. He also had fun writing funny things on my white board.

Look at the difference in the WINDOWS (top right clean!)!!

On this day, I had promised we'd leave early and I didn't follow through.
BUT we had a delicious lunch! The room by this time was lookin' pretty good.

Aser had a lot of fun writing on the white board.
Ask him to read what he wrote to you! You'll laugh because his accent is HILARIOUS!

Another day, Angela was SUPER sweet to come help me with what Tim and I hadn't finished. We got 3M strips and covered up a chalkboard that I don't use. Now I have more "bulletin board" space and everything looks more uniform.

I didn't get a picture of Angela...but this is a cute one of us at a friends wedding.

And finally, this past Thursday I sent a picture text saying: "Are you good with scissors?!? This is how I'll be spending my time tonight. :o)" Look at that! It's a never ending roll of laminated stuff and I was going to do it BY MYSELF!

Looking at the amount of laminated stuff made me want to cry! (not really - I just whined about it until I got help)

It would've taken me all night and I still wouldn't have finished. Luckily, one of my friends - Ryan - said that I should go over to his work place and bring scissors. OMG! I jumped on that! I brought 5 pairs of scissors and put them to work double time!!

Ryan is THE super star for offering the much needed help!

Corey was either cutting out stars or showing off his guns...still haven't figured out which!

Chad was multi-tasking!

Jeremy said he wouldn't help unless he got to use the Christmas Tree scissors. haha!

Real men help first grade teachers cut out stars and such!

There were other people that work with Ryan that helped & aren't pictured.

I feel like saying THANK YOU isn't sufficient. The work EVERYONE did is seriously priceless!!


August 9 was the first day back to school for us teachers. We did have five days off after the 9th but having looked at my room and feeling completely overwhelmed, I took those five days and used them to get my room in order.

I called my mom because I felt COMPLETELY overwhelmed and begged for her to come help! It didn't take much convincing - she agreed.

These are the before pictures...

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Gearin' Up

Have I mentioned lately how thankful I am to have a job? And not just ANY job, but one that I really want? I'm a first grade teacher. I...AM...A...FIRST...GRADE...TEACHER! :o)
The only thing that would put sprinkles on this cake is if we added "bilingual" before "first grade teacher" - but I'll wait. I can wait.

I've spent the past week cleaning, organizing, and preparing my classroom. I have before pictures and haven't taken after pictures yet...because it's not ready!! AAAAHHH!! It's almost there. I think I need one more day and I'll be set.

Have I mentioned how it takes a village? I couldn't have done this on my own. I've had the AMAZING help of my mom, my brother Tim and my childhood friend Angela. I'm SO incredibly thankful to have the most incredible people in my life! (of course, this is the SHORT list)

More to come later!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

THE 5k

I just wanted to report that I ran a 5k today with my friend Regina. It's the one that benefits the World Parrot Trust! :o)

Our goal was to RUN the entire thing. While the time did matter, I really wanted to RUN the whole thing. This did not happen! Why? Well, there was a hill (bridge) at the very beginning. The first ten minutes of any run are hard for me. Add a hill and you finish me! haha!

So, instead, we ran 1.55 and then went into 2-1 intervals.

Towards the middle of mile 2, I started panicking during the run because I couldn't seem to get a deep breath in. Thankfully, I got myself calm and all everything was fine.

Then we got closer to the end and we saw some girls with really fun shirts. One said: I GOT THIS! And the other said: I may be slow, but you're still behind me. Regina & I both agreed that while they are way cute shirts we had to beat them to the finish line!! HAHAHA!

And at the end, the hill that we had to climb at the beginning, helped us gain momentum on the way down for the finish. The girls with the cute shirts were behind us officially. I saw my family and heard them cheering us on. At that point I was SUPER close to crying! But I held it together.

We sprinted to the finish line and then Regina tells me our time: 37.07.

Enter Mimi's excited tears here! :o) I was really happy with the time! Even during our practice runs we run 3.1 miles at 39 minutes. The 5k in April I finished in 47 minutes.

I'm very VERY happy!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Next to the Bible...

I wrote this January 2009. I remember the context well and I laugh a bit when I read this. I'm thankful that I'm a teacher now. And I'm very thankful those winds of change brought some needed fresh air!


Next to the Bible, if you look a little to your left there's "You've Got Mail."

Mr. Joe Fox tells my hero Kathleen Kelly:

"You're at war. 'It's not personal, it's business. It's not personal it's business.' Recite that to yourself every time you feel you're losing your nerve. I know you worry about being brave, this is your chance. Fight. Fight to the death."

So inspirational! Don't you think? Because really...we recite that to ourselves knowing full well that when people are involved it's personal. Business doesn't grow without personal investment.

When life gives you limes you make limeade. If these people don't like your limeade - make some popsicles and take them to someone new!

2009 has the winds of change blowing through the corridors.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

This Week Is Exciting!

Among other things, what I'm looking forward to the most is attending the Global Leadership Summit. I really wish I was going to Chicago and then accidentally bumping into Blake Mycoskie, the Founder and "Chief Shoe Giver" of TOMS Shoes, Inc. Since that isn't going to happen, I'll enjoy what I get in the Houston Satellite location.

I'm excited because I know that the GLS was one of the main components of giving me a kick in the pants to get in gear for getting back on the teaching train. And this time I'm taking my brother Tim along with me!

I signed up before school was out last spring and I seriously can't believe that it's THIS week!