Thursday, December 8, 2016

So This Just Happened

Yep, it's a name badge with my picture.  A name badge makes it pretty official.  I am back to work on a daily basis.  I accepted a position a week or so ago with a nearby school district as a family literacy coordinator.  I have not yet seen all the pieces in motion yet but I will be working four hours a day with adult immigrants and their school aged children, teaching adult who are learning English and helping those adults as they interact with their children.  I took a very part time teaching job in August teaching adult education/adult ELL on Saturday mornings so some parts of this will be similar to that.  This job is unique in that it also involves helping families help their children be successful at school.  I am taking over an existing position so next week I will be shadowing the teacher who is already in place and then will be on my own in January. 

For years, I have prayed and hoped for a part time job that would provide us with a bit more consistent income while allowing me to still be home without all the extras of a classroom all while doing a job I love to do.  I hope this job really is that.  I will work afternoons only, 12-4 and with my commute, I should be home between 4:30 and 5, depending on how long it takes to get the kids picked up.  

It's still a change and in some ways, it has been hard to say yes.  I have worked for the same district for almost 15 years.  Even though I wasn't a full time employee, I have always been involved with the district and the families they serve.  I have worked in the same district as my husband for that entire time as well, often in the same building, and sometimes just a few doors away.  There is just a tinge of sadness there in letting go of those familiar faces and that community of families.  This new job will be different in that I will working with a bit different demographic.  I will be working with a lot of Arabic, Russian, and Kurdish families.  While the district I have worked in is very diverse, our largest population group by far is Latino so this is a new adventure, where I don't necessarily have a lot of background knowledge regarding those groups.  That change is exciting, where I know I will be learning new things about culture and language. 

So Monday is the day.  A new schedule and a new adventure...

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Sweet Boy

Don't let that sweet grin fool you!
Just today he tried to negotiate a trip in Dad's truck.
Dad said that he couldn't go with him and Kai's first response was "You give me pop." 
That was then followed by "You give me pop and money."
As in "I won't throw a fit about not going if you meet my demands."
Such a conversation is only bested by his random comments about 15 minutes later of
"Me going to pop your head."

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Better Late Than Never

Pretty sure I've used that title more than once.  That's life, isn't it?  Halloween pics after the Thanksgiving ones?  Eh, why not?

Our crew was nothing if not eclectic.
Kai was a pilot.  I'm not really sure he knew what he was but the pilot suit was D's or his brother's from when they were little, and this is kind of the last chance for someone to wear it.
Kenson was Captain America.  He made his shield about 85% independently. 
Zeke was a jellyfish.  He actually had lights inside this costume but it was hard to see.
Conleigh was a rock star, mostly because she really wanted to wear make up. Conleigh helped with her microphone but the spray paint kept wanting to blow the paper towel tube over so Mom ended up helping.

We did most of our trick or treating at our local college.
This was outdoor in their nature center, hosted by the education association on campus.

Conleigh did not want a Walmart bag for her candy.
She needed something a little more rock start like.

Local college again...the gym was filled with student athletes.
Each team hosted a station, often one that matched their sport.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Thanksgiving Past and Present

Zeke, sporting his turkey hat from kindergarten

A throwback photo, when Zeke had no hat and instead posed with the two bigs in their hats from kindergarten.
Zeke was 2 and had been home just about a month.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Election Day Prayer

Well, it's here.  Despite the thousands of Facebook memes, litany of SNL jokes, and angst of millions, America is voting today.  This election cycle has been a struggle for me.  It is not that I want a perfect candidate.  I have no illusions of grandeur, that I can only vote for a person with whom I agree 100 percent.  I'd just like to feel like there was a choice that involved real leadership.  I hate the way our nation is divided.  I despise that cronyism and materialism are a part of our system.  I hate that political leadership has such a shallow footing, where integrity and principled thought combined with compassion and genuine concern for people seem to be abandoned. 

It is not that I think we all should agree.  On the contrary, our ability to disagree is what makes this a pretty great place to live.  It's just that I wish we were a bit less politic and did a lot less shouting about who is right and who is wrong and a lot more listening and compromising. 

 I honestly don't want that.  Of course, I'd prefer that whomever is elected shares some of my core values.  But America is a big enough place that it's really okay if the new president does not.  America should not be about my agenda or my opportunity.  Instead, my prayer is our new president meets God tonight.  Not because I want God to pull some divine puppetry strings as He puts the new president in his place but because I want our president to literally encounter the King of the World.  Not because I am judging the heart of a person, believing that he or she is not a Christian or is not as good of one as I'd like them to me.  No.  I want our president to experience a divine encounter, something that shakes our new president to his or her core, that leaves no doubt that our president has seen the very face of God and lived to tell about it.  The presence of God as the catalyst for a heart change, the glory of God as a reminder of the depth of this earthly kingdom, the spirit of God as an urging to return to working not for man but for the King of the World, where a president has the heart of a servant...that is really my prayer.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

In Need of Accessories

Can I tell you that this kid below cracks me up?  Yesterday, for no apparent reason, he decided he needed to wear winter hats.  All day long.  He probably tried on ten different hats and ten different pairs of gloves throughout the day.
This is the hat that started things off.
Yes, he's wearing it sideways which is part of why I took the picture to start with.
I think he liked wearing it sideways since he could pull the flap down and mutter under his breath, "Turn the light on!"

Then we moved on to the shark hat which was appropriate since we were making Play-Doh sea creatures.

After nap, we swapped things out for the frog hat.
No need for pants when you've got a frog hat.

And this is how we went to pick up Zeke from school.
I told him I had to grab my purse and we'd be ready to go.
He ran off, yelled, "Me too!" and this is what I found.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Grown Up Girlie

My mom is making a big move and with it has come a lot of cleaning.  That has included a lot of dusty memories making their way out of storage including my prom dresses and several of the dresses I sewed for 4-H.  My mom also has a few of her items like that as well so Conleigh took full advantage of them being out to do some trying on.
I sewed this pink lace dress for 4-H my junior year of high school.  

I think this hot pink jacket and sleeveless dress were my freshman year project for 4-H.

This was my senior year prom dress.
I loved this dress and still do.
It is off the shoulder with a very short, flowing chiffon train.
Looking at it 20 years later, I think it's actually kept its wearability pretty well.

Fuschia velvet with lace cap sleeves, sewed by either my grandma or my mom, for my mom.
It pretty much fit Conleigh.
I think Grandma is going to make some alterations so it could really be worn.

This is my mom's pink lace formal from high school.
I think my mom was shocked to see how close it was to actually fitting Conleigh.
Again, with some alternations from Grandma, Conleigh could have a great dress.