This past June, I left my job as a 5th-6th grade teacher at a special ed school for kids with Asperger's Syndrome. I knew that once I had my baby, I wouldn't want to work full-time, especially that far away (often my commute was over an hour). While I was pregnant, I was blessed to have found a couple Mom-friendly, part-time jobs to keep me teaching and to bring in a little extra income while still being able to spend time as much time as possible with Levi. Although I really enjoyed my time with my lovably-quirky group of kids, I'm really looking forward to going back to my first love; being an art teacher.
Starting next week, I'll be teaching art at an organization where home-schooled kids can take various classes a couple days a week to supplement their schooling. I just so happen to be an alum of the program, so I'm super excited to be back! I'll be teaching a middle school art class, a high school art class and various workshops for younger kids throughout the year. I'll also be teaching elementary art, one morning a week, at a small Christian school where my Mom teaches 2nd and 3rd grade. Between the two jobs, I'll be teaching kids from grades 1-12, which will give me a great variety of ages and abilities to work with. I'm really looking forward to it!
So, needless to say, you'll probably be seeing more art projects shared on the blog in the very near future. I'm hoping that you find a few to inspire you and the kids in your life.
Now, back to lesson planning, material ordering, poster making, and classroom cleaning. (you know, in-between feeding, diapering, kissing and cuddling...)
There are times in life, especially during those big life events (like having a baby, for instance..) when you are especially thankful for those in your life who support you, encourage you, celebrate with you, make you dinner, send you cards, shower you with gifts, are there when you need them, who show you love - no matter what.
We've been blessed with so many family and friends like this. Thanks for making life "half as hard and twice as good"...
Brother, sister, parent, child; Friends on Earth and friends above, For all gentle thoughts and mild; Lord of all, to Thee we raise This, our hymn of grateful praise. - from the hymn "For the Beauty of the Earth"
My grateful praise...
- a successful seminar for my new job, with baby in toe. -taking baby to church, introducing him to lots of good friends
- birthday picnic with my boys - my sister's engagement! - Pastor Coleman's visit and sermon - "listen to me, my dear people..." - Aunt Jasmine's "Hope Blanket" : FOUND!
- a visit from James aunts and cousins, fresh fruit and fun gifts for Mom and Levi - yummy meals, courtesy of friends
- this lovely handmade birthday crown from Aunt Janet! ...
- and of course, this sweet little boy and getting to know and love him more and more everyday.
Thank you again for all of your words of encouragement, congratulations and prayers over the past few weeks. As you can imagine, we feel so incredibly blessed by the addition of Levi to our family. He is more than we could have ever hoped for. God has richly blessed us with this little boy.
Over the next few weeks, as I get into the swing of motherhood, I probably won't be up to my usual daily blogging. But, you never know who might stop by...perhaps a guest blogger or two? We'll see. :)
Either way, I hope to stop in from time to time with a little of this and a little of that and of course to share some pictures of our sweet pea.
I know many of you (and most of all ME!) have been waiting on pins and needles for this little baby to show up, so I figured I'd give you a little update.
Yesterday I was officially a week overdue and went to the hospital for a non-stress test, ultrasound and Dr. appointment. Everything went swimmingly and Baby James seems quite happy and healthy. The ultrasound tech thought that the baby could be about 9 pounds(!!). The midwife said not to take that number too seriously, as usually ultrasounds are not terribly accurate. In any case, they want to induce me on Saturday.
So, baby has his/her eviction notice set! I'm praying that it comes before Saturday, so that we don't have to induce.
Thanks for your love and prayers! Baby will be here soon!
*UPDATE*: Michelle, one of the owners of the Send-a-Ball company that I mentioned below, commented on this post and offered $2 off a ball for my readers! Imagine that! If you want to send a ball through her company, use the coupon code BLOG at checkout. Happy mailing!
I've been wanting to try this out for long time and finally got the excuse to do it. Interestingly enough, I actually got the idea from an episode of "Shark Tank" where someone was starting a business of sending balls in the mail for special occasions. Instead of paying them to send it for me, I thought I'd just try it myself and see what happens. If they can, why can't I?
Since it's my little cousin Jacob's 5th birthday next week, I thought he'd be the perfect candidate to receive my first ball-in-the-mail experiment.
I found a cheap, plastic ball at the pharmacy and using a sharpie, decorated it with a birthday message. I made sure to buy a ball that was plain or lightly marbleized, so my design would show up.
After I finished decorating, I wrote the address right onto the ball (large and clear) and brought it to the post office. When I brought the ball up to the counter, the post-woman smiled and said "This is why I love my job!" I ended up needing to use about $2.50 of postage to send the ball from Massachusetts to Minnesota. I made sure to ask for fun stamps that a 5 year old would like and I ended up with race cars. So, it's officially in the mail and hopefully it will make it safe and sound. I can't wait to hear what Jacob thinks of his birthday "package"!
My mind is already spinning trying to come up with other fun and creative things that I could stick some stamps on and send through the mail. A flip flop? A hat? An altoid tin? Fabric? A soda bottle filled with goodies? I'll keep you posted (har har!).
(So, I just found this post that I wrote last August in my "drafts" folder and realized that I never got around to posting it. Even though we probably won't go camping this year with the new babe (my whole family is going next week! *tears*), maybe someone who IS, will find this scrumptious little recipe helpful!)
Today I thought I'd share a little "recipe" for my family's new favorite camping dessert. We've been calling them "Banana Boats". Brian and I were introduced to them recently a while ago, by some friends, but Mom also reminded me that we used to make these during some of our camping trips in Yemen. Either way, they are wonderful treats that will certainly be a new tradition on all of our family camping trips!
You will need:
-a camp fire, preferably hot coals rather than a roaring fire -Aluminum foil -Bananas (I like very ripe ones for this)
Any combination of the following: -Hershey's chocolate -marshmallows -peanut butter -heath bar chunks -anything else you can think of that would taste good in a banana...
First, slice your banana in half, leaving on the peel. Lay it in a piece of tin foil, then fill it with any of the above ingredients. My favorites are the chocolate, peanut butter and marshmallow. Wrap the entire banana in tin foil and leave it in the fire for about 3-5 minutes. Carefully take your bananas out of the fire (preferably with tongs), unwrap and enjoy the gooey goodness!
Banana wrapped in tin foil cooking in the camp fire