It seems like more and more often the songs my students love are about sex, drugs, and/or alcohol.
How come motivation only comes at night when I'm tired? Last night I had all of these wonderful, creative ideas... I recorded them using Evernote so I wouldn't forget. I planned to do those things today. All I did was sit on the couch... Granted I didn't feel that great but I still should have done something.
I decide to come to bed and, tired as I am, all I can think about is my list. However I'm too lazy to get out of bed to do anything right now. Besides, I have to get up early tomorrow. Maybe since I'll be up early and out and about I'll find some motivation. Not only do I have fun stuff I want to do but I need to clean my house. Oh boy.
Thought of the day - Good things come to people who wait, but better things come to those who go out and get them.~Anonymous
It's time. I'm going to lose weight. I must lose weight. I have about a month before my vacation and that's a month I have to work on my body to be pool/beach ready. I ordered 21 Day Fix by Team Beachbody. Carrie is doing it and loves it. There's a workout program on DVDs plus containers to help with portion control and more. I decided I needed a plan to follow and this one comes highly recommended.
I ordered it yesterday. I can't wait to get it. I've already started though - I set up my account on TeamBeachbody.com, took my body measurements, and started with protein shakes. I'm about to go take my "before" pictures. Yick. Not excited.
Ok... Let's do this.
Thought of the day: "Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can." - Arthur Ashe
It's been a while since I've posted an entry on my general blog. Tomorrow marks 11 years since that fateful, tragic day... I've been thinking a lot and praying. I've decided to repost the entry from last year. My heart still breaks every time I think about that day and how it has changed our world; from Tuesday, September 11, 2001 to Tuesday, September 11, 2012.
September 11th changed my world, just like it did for so many others. I had already been questioning my faith and searching for answers to questions I didn't even know I had. I'm still searching for answers and I think I will be for a long time. I continue to pray and live by my philosophy "Everything happens for a reason. Just believe." I do believe.
September 11, 2011
Everyone has been sharing their stories about 9/11, including the TV newscasters. I thought I would share my own story.
Tuesday, September 11, 2001 started off like any other Tuesday of my senior year at Western Maryland College. Lazily I got up, got my shower, and went back to my room to get ready for my 10:20 class. Still wearing my white bathrobe with the green frogs all over it, and hair still wet (wrapped up in my towel), I sat down at my computer to say good morning to my boyfriend, Jeff, a student at James Madison University. I signed on and typed a good morning message. The reply I got was startling, to say the least. "Turn on the TV." I didn't understand. I asked, "What channel?" and he replied, "Doesn't matter. Just turn it on."I'll never forget that moment, or that day. I don't remember what else I said to Jeff that day, but I do remember that I stayed in my bathrobe for hours, my hair drying all matted up because I didn't do anything to it while it was still wet. And it didn't even matter. I just sat on my bed and watched in disbelief as the towers burned and news of the crash at the Pentagon came on the screen. I cried when the towers came down.
I tried for several hours before finally getting through to my parents. They worked in the same office, just the two of them, so I was able to talk to them both. I can't remember much of what was said during that conversation but I know I told my dad I was scared and I know I was crying, still in my bathrobe with my messy hair, still unable to peel myself away from the TV. My dad paused at one point, and with a soft but serious voice he told me that even though I wasn't raised in a very religious household, it would be a good idea to pray. That was the moment it hit me how real this all was, and how very, very bad. When we finally got off the phone, I just laid on my bed crying, still watching TV.
I don't know what time it was when I finally got dressed or even what clothes I put on. Classes, of course, had been canceled. But I heard my housemates moving around, so I got myself semi-presentable and opened my door. My housemates were crying. It was sad and scary. I found out that everyone had gotten in touch with their immediate families, and everyone was okay. One of my housemates lived in Westminster and his mom wanted him to come home. He refused and told her we were safe on campus. Another housemate's mom worked at the Pentagon. She stayed home sick and was therefore not harmed in the crash. Another housemate grew up near NYC and knew a lot of people in and around NYC.
I'm not sure whose idea it was, maybe Lisa's, but someone suggested we turn off all of the news coverage for a little while and make dinner (late lunch) together. So we did. We made spaghetti. We talked. We laughed. We bonded on that darkest of days, and not for the rest of the school year were we as close as we were that day, eating our spaghetti and laughing.
WMC held a candlelight vigil for the victims of that fateful morning. Most of my housemates went together. We stood and listened to the prayers and poems and stories. We cried. But this crazy thing happened... Life went on. We kept going. We resumed class on Thursday and things started to go back to normal. Only, they would never truly be normal ever again.
I mourned for all of the people who lost their lives on September 11th. I mourned for the families who would never see their loved one again and the children who would grow up not knowing one of their parents. I mourned for the rescue workers who lost their lives trying to save others (true heroes). I mourned for the loss of the twin towers - NYC is my favorite city and the skyline was forever changed. I mourned for America's loss of innocence.
September 11, 2001 - a day we will never forget.
Thought of the day: “I know what it’s like to receive that call out of the blue that the dearest thing in your life is gone," Vice President Joseph Biden told a crowd that gathered at the Pentagon Sunday [9/11/11] to remember those who died when Flight 77 crashed into the headquarters of the U.S. military in Washington, D.C. Biden was referring to the heartbreaking call he got when his wife and infant daughter were killed in a car crash decades ago. “No memorial, no ceremony, no words will ever fill the void left in your hearts by their loss,” Biden said. “My prayer for you is that 10 years later, when you think of them,” he said, “that it brings a smile to your lips before it brings a tear to your eye.”
Another school year has come to a close. We had promotion for the 5th graders on Friday and today was the annual 5th grade bridge. The teachers line up and the 5th graders pass between them with lots of crying and hugging... After that all of the teachers go outside and wave as the buses leave. This year was the first group of 5th graders that I have taught since they were in kindergarten. I've watched them grow and mature. I'm really going to miss them. I wish them all the best in middle school and beyond. I hope that I touched the life of even just one of those kids as so many of my teachers touched my life.
It occurred to me recently that the kids who were in 5th grade my first year here will be seniors in high school next year. That's a scary thought for me!
Next year may bring a lot of changes for me as I look to move out of the computer lab and into a regular classroom. I may not even be at the same school and it's going to be difficult to leave behind everyone that I know and love here. But I was called to teach and I need to move forward so that I may do so. No matter where life takes me, I will always remember the start to my teaching career and all of the students and staff here who have touched my life and made a difference in my world.
Last Monday, Memorial Day, when many people were at the beach or camping or having BBQs with their families, I was picking up the newest resident at my house.
She's the brown bun on the right and her name is Ellie. She's approximately 3 years old and she was given to me by some friends who had rescued her from being taken to the Humane Society. They had intended to find her a forever home and two years later she was still living with them. After I lost Flower, they thought of Stormy and me. I agreed to give it a try. I wasn't committing to keeping her in case Stormy didn't like her. So, I brought her home. I fell in love with her at first sight. She's too cute for words (Squee!) and she's super tiny (less than half of Stormy's size). The two are still getting used to each other. I was only able to get this photo because they had stopped chasing each other to catch a breather.
All three of my buns have had 2 names (Cinnamon Bun, Flower Pot, and Stormy Bear). I decided that if Ellie was going to be staying with us, she needed a second name too. I tossed around a few ideas and decided on Ellie Mae. It just flows off the tongue and it's super cute, just like her. It's also sort of significant because she came to me in May. I have to admit, Mae isn't the only second name she has. I also call her Ellie Copter because her ears sticking straight out makes her look like a helicopter. Snart! (Snart is a word some friends and I say when something is silly/funny. It makes us laugh that much harder). I know, that's just wrong. But I think it's adorable. It's like when I call Stormy a Stinky Bear. I say it with love.
Phobia: noun; a persistent, irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it. (dictionary.reference.com)
I have fears; we all do. So when does a fear become a phobia? It becomes a phobia when it is irrational - for instance, being afraid of something that can't hurt you. It becomes a phobia when you go out of your way to avoid it (and therefore affects your day-to-day life). It becomes a phobia when the fear consumes you.
Growing up, I had arachnophobia. It's a common phobia, and one I've somewhat outgrown. I think I've outgrown it because other things have taken the place of my irrational fear of spiders. I can actually leave a spider alone in my house and not freak out or feel like I have to kill it. If it's big, I want it out of the house, but small ones don't seem to bother me anymore (as long as they don't get ON me). I think I used to fear them because of the way they look - sort of evil and menacing. It's not like I've ever been bitten by a brown recluse or a black widow that would give me a healthy fear of spiders. That's why it's a phobia - it's irrational.
I also had a fear of silverfish and cockroaches. I think I feared them for much the same reason I feared spiders... Both creepy crawlies still freak me out, but not as bad as when I was younger. You can't tell me you wouldn't be afraid of roaches if you found one in Barbie's bed. *shudder*
My Orthopterophobia began roughly at the end of 2003, beginning of 2004. I lived in a friend's basement. My room was infested with sprickets (aka camel crickets or cave crickets - if you don't know what they are, look them up. But I warn you. They are devil spawn). I slept with a can of Raid on the nightstand, and wouldn't get out of bed in the morning until I had flipped on the light and, standing on the bed, sprayed every last one of them. Go ahead and laugh. I'm sure I was quite a sight to behold - standing on my bed, armed with my Raid - but if you've ever come across a spricket, you understand. It's a wonder I survived my 6 months in that house. I'm sure I was breathing in way too much Raid fumes, but it's what I had to do. That experience led to my fear of crickets in general - insects I've never liked to begin with (Granddaddy always had to bait my hook when we went fishing) but didn't fear until I'd met my first spricket. *shudder*
Moving on. I don't know when my fear of wasps and bees (only stinging ones - not the cute, fat bumbles) began. I don't like the buzzing sound they make when they fly. I don't like the fact that they can sting me. I don't like how evil they look. All I know is that it is a huge accomplishment for me to be able to kill the wasps that get into my classroom. Most of the time I have to be rescued... Just ask my coworkers and the building service workers...
I've developed entonophobia because I can't stand ticks. They're creepy, crawlies of the tiny variety, but what freaks me out about them is that they want to be ON me. I've now had 4 ticks on me in my lifetime, and each one was more traumatic than the last... If you haven't figured it out, I don't do well with bugs - especially ones that are ON me. I suppose I also have a fear of lice, but it's not as bad as the fear of ticks. Lice aren't trying to suck my blood. This whole blog entry idea was sparked when I found a tick on the back of my knee last night. At the same time, the house I was in was dealing with an ant problem, and an unidentified creepy crawly had come in from outside. Not a good evening for me. I'm itching all over just thinking about it, and I have goosebumps.
I do have several other phobias in addition to the creepy crawly ones... I sometimes experience a fear of crowds and a fear of new things. Since I do not always experience these feelings, I don't know if they are true phobias. I find the times they bother me most is when I have to deal with them at the same time and I am by myself. Going to a new place that is going to be crowded is a big problem for me, especially if I am alone. If I am with someone I trust, I can generally handle it. I still become very anxious, but I can handle it. Facing it alone is typically enough to make me not do it at all, even if it means missing out on something I'd really like to do. Sometimes, just one or the other will be enough to stop me in my tracks. I don't like crowds and I don't like things that are unfamiliar - especially places where there may be crowds of strangers.
In my research I discovered there are some quite unusual phobias out there like hominophobia/androphobia (fear of men), asymmetriphobia (fear of asymmetrical things), barophobia (fear of gravity), and papyrophobia (fear of paper)... I am thankful I don't have more phobias than I do. I'm also thankful not to have triskaidekaphobia since 13 is my lucky number. I found one phobia that really made me laugh. It's called: Hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia and it is the fear of long words. If I counted correctly, it has 14 syllables and 35 letters.That's just so very, very wrong!!! Wouldn't a diminutive word have sufficed? *giggle* Sorry, couldn't help myself. I can't imagine having that phobia because of my love of words. I'll keep my entomophobia. Thanks.
Fears I have
Entomophobia: fear of insects
Entonophobia: fear of ticks
Orthopterophobia: fear of crickets, grasshoppers, etc
Arachnophobia: fear of spiders
Spheksophobia: fear of wasps
Apiphobia: fear of bees
Herpetophobia: fear of reptiles or creepy, crawly things
Enoclophobia/Demophobia - fear of crowds
Cainophobia/Cainotophobia - fear of newness/novelty
Check out phobialist.com for a long list of phobias... It's the place from where I got most of my phobia names. So what are your fears and phobias? Maybe you have nomophobia? I do. It's a fear of being without your cell phone.
Thought of the Day: "We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face... we must do that which we think we cannot." ~Eleanor Roosevelt
Noble advice, but I'm not ready to face my fears... yet.
I can't help but feeling that there's some sort of black cloud over my school... Over the past few years there have been a large number of incidents involving the health of staff members or of family members of the staff. I suppose when you have any large number of people working together, things are bound to happen, but it just seems to me that we've had an extraordinary amount of things happening... There's been cancer, thyroid problems, female problems (with surgeries and some with complications), a miscarriage, vehicle accidents, strokes, and an assortment of other ailments. There have even been deaths, the most recent being a close friend's father on Thursday morning. I know there must be a reason for all of this. God wouldn't give any of us more than we can handle, but what is it that it seems like something is always happening/going wrong? We have a very strong staff and an amazing administration - we're very close and it is definitely like working with family. Is that why we're being tested with all of this? I know we're not necessarily meant to know why things happen, but that doesn't make it any easier. We've had a lot of good times, too - weddings, births, celebrations of numbers of years on staff... but with the one staff member's father's passing on Thursday, it is fresh in our minds just how much has been happening to the staff. It's difficult for me to imagine what it's like to lose a family member, but my heart goes out to my friend.
We had a staff meeting first thing Thursday morning. I had this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. I was afraid of the bad news we were going to receive. I had no real reason to think it was bad, except the feeling I had. We get to the meeting and find out it's because one of our staff members was being recognized at the board that evening for 25 years of teaching in county. So I felt relieved, though still uneasy. An hour and a half later I found out about my friend's father. I was devastated for her. I still am. I plan to attend the services if I can get the time off. I am hoping she is comforted by the memories she has of her father - that's all we can hope for when anyone loses a loved one. I know in time she and her family members will begin to heal and move on in their lives.
I find myself praying for us to catch a break at my school. I just don't know what God has in store for us, and that's very difficult. As a friend said to me in an e-mail - "I'm tired of God thinking I can handle all of this." I hope God continues to give every one of us the strength to handle anything that is dealt to us in life (I have faith that he will, but that doesn't make this any easier for anyone on staff going through something).
Thought of the day: "Everything happens for a reason... Just believe."
It's windy and chilly. It snowed for about 20 minutes. There wasn't enough snowfall to have any accumulation but I still enjoyed it. It's the kind of day that makes me thankful for a fuzzy green blanket (a present from Mom and Dad) and a mug of cappuccino from my Keurig (also a present from Mom and Dad - the Keurig, not the mug of cappuccino). So anyway, I'm curled up on the couch, all toasty, looking out the window, feeling all artsy, and I can't decide what to do. Of course, right? Maybe I should just enjoy the moment and read. I do have the perfect situation for reading a good book. Yes, I think that sounds perfectly splendid.
Thought of the day: "Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams." ~Ashley Smith
This is from today's flash snowfall.
It's been two weeks. I miss my little angel SO much. I can't believe it was only a year after we lost Cinnamon Bun that we lost Flower Pot. I wish I had something awesome or profound to say, but alas, I am at a loss for words. I just have this hole in my heart for my two little bunny angels. But I'm so thankful to have had the chance to love them and feel their love in return.
The best part of all of this is that it seems my Stormy Bear is a very happy solo bun. He has really come out of his shell since Flower died. He is much more social with me and even doesn't seem to mind anymore if pick him up. He comes up to me all the time now to get his head rubbed. This thrills me to no end as I was very worried he would become depressed without some company, especially since I am gone a lot during the week. We'll see if he feels the same way about me after I put a red bow around his neck to take his picture for Valentine's Day.
Thought of the day: “The risk of love is loss, and the price of loss is grief. But the pain of grief is only a shadow when compared with the pain of never risking love.” ~Hilary Stanton Zunin