Tuesday, August 23, 2011

It Just Might be a Miracle!

What started in early May as this...
 has grown to this!
Even though we've had looooong stretches H-O-T weather, I've kept them alive!!!  I'm so proud!

Thanks, Mom, for helping me choose the right ones to plant!  ;)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Thanks, Matt, Dad, & Papa!

I'm so thankful for the men in my life who so willingly help me!

Matt came and spent a few days fixing up my shed.  I'm embarrassed to post this picture, but you have to see it to fully appreciate his hard work!  It's just sad and tired looking.
But, now it looks brand new!!  I couldn't be happier!!  Amazing, isn't it?  And, yes, you're looking at the same building!
Thanks, Matt, for all your hard work. (Chloe is very happy that the gate is fixed, too! She loves her daily romp around the yard.)

Last week Papa and Dad spent a day over here installing a new water softner!!!!  It required crawling under the house and other yucky, time-consuming things.
They did such a professional job!!  Thank you Dad and Papa!  The difference in the feel of the water is incredible!  I'm loving it! 

I am one blessed girl!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A Letter to My Loves

Tomorrow you start another year of school!
Chaseyou will be starting HIGH SCHOOL!!!  It seriously makes me cry thinking about it!  While you may be too shy to let many see, Chase, you have the biggest heart.  Even at 14 (and 6'2'') you're not too old to tell me you love me or give me a hug.  You're kind to others and humble.  You are loyal and one of the biggest team players I've ever watched on the basketball court!  Chase, you may be shy and quiet, but I'm so proud of the way you are your own person.  No one sways you or talks you into something you don't want to do!  This shows a strength, courage, and security few adults have.  I have LOVED watching you grow in your walk with Jesus this summer and can't wait to see His plans unfold for you!  I know this will be a tough year with 6:00 a.m. workouts and after school practices, but if anyone can handle it YOU can!  Stay focused, but have fun!   I love you!!  

Garrett, you will be starting 5th grade!!!  I can't believe how you're changing everyday - growing taller and becoming more mature.  You have such a gift at reading people and knowing what they're feeling.  You're so sensitive and loving.  Even at 10 years old you have such a servants heart - wanting to help others and take care of them.  It's easy to see why you have so many friends!!  I know you're going to soar in 5th grade!  You do such a great job of being responsible and staying on top of things.  With your work ethic there's no limit to what you can achieve.  Enjoy this new season in school of changing classes and becoming more independent.  Keep loving people the way you do.  That's one of the best ways to show them Jesus!  Garrett, be confident in you are and believe in yourself!!  I love you!! 

Jacob, you will be starting 3rd grade!!  At eight years old you are so polite and outgoing!  You love a good laugh and can be such a silly, carefree boy sometimes.  (That's just like your Mommy when she was little!)  Jacob, you are so smart!  Don't ever settle for less than your best.  You can do anything you put your mind to!  I know you're going to love 3rd grade.  Have all the fun you can stand and learn everything you can!!  I love you!!

Ethan, you will be starting 1st grade!!  I can't believe how much you've changed in one short summer!  You've gone from being the shy little guy who hid behind his mommy to the little boy who willingly talks to his coaches and teachers - without mommy or daddy being there!!  It delights me to no end that you love to learn!  That's just one reason you're so good at school!  I know you'll work hard and make good choices.  I love you!!
Abby, you will be starting 1st grade!!  I can only imagine all the joy and happiness you'll bring to your classroom with your sweet smile and infectious giggle.  I love the way you can go with the flow or break off and do your own thing.  You are such a strong, loving, creative, independent young lady!  I know you're going to work hard.  Stay focused and enjoy learning!!  I love you!!

Lord, be with these sweet ones!  I know you live in them and will always be with them.  I pray that you protect them and help them make friendships that build them up.  Help them to see others through Your eyes and to show them Your love, kindness, and grace.  Let them be a light that shines brightly for YOU!

Monday, August 15, 2011

2011-2012 ~ YEAR #12!

Today I begin my twelfth year of teaching!  TWELVE? How did that happen?  Where did the time go? 

All you have to do is read my posts about school last year to know it was a tough year.  By far the toughest!  There were many, many challenges but, now that I'm on the other side, I can honestly say that I'm a better teacher for having "endured" it.  I have more tools for my toolbox and more tricks up my sleeve. 

I never thought I'd say this, but I'm excited about today. (If you've been praying for me, THANK YOU!  I'm only ready to go back because of that!)  I've met my class and they seem so sweet!  I'm ready to reclaim my joy in the profession I love so much! 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Last Weekend of Freedom

I started back to school (work days) last Monday.  Other than my computer crashing (the Lord healed it, thankfully), a HUGE scheduling mess, and temporarily losing my keys for 30 min (I thought I was going to be stranded at the High School!), it started off pretty well.  Because Mom helped me set up my classroom on the weekend and because Kelly and I had already planned, I was ahead the entire week.  As a teacher, this NEVER happens.  It felt great!
I had Friday off.  Garrett and Ethan came to school and helped me put away tissues and Clorox wipes and pass out papers and pencils.  I loved having their help!  That evening Abby, Tonya, Mom, Tina and I kept up the traditional "back to school pedicures".  This year, to save a little money, we just did them ourselves.  The "party" went a little long, so Abby stayed the night with me (a first!) so that she didn't have to get up early and go to the football field.  I love getting to spend girl time with Abs!
Saturday, I didn't do much of anything until later in the evening when we celebrated Mom and Dad's birthday!!  My parents are amazing!  I love them so much!!  This year we got them both shoes.  Dad-new tennis shoes and Mom-new, frivolous sandals.  (Seriously, SO CUTE!)
Ahh, cousins!  They love hanging out!
 Pop's farm buddy.
 Kenley loved the chocolate cake.  Can you tell?  :)
Finally, today, I went riding.  What a beautiful day for it!!  Stormy was perfect and gave me such a great ride!  It was just what I needed.  I feel so relaxed and ready to face the week!