Sunday, December 18, 2011

Lamp shades!

Hello all,

I hope your holiday season is underway and off to a good start. My sister, Alexis, is visiting me for a week here while Matt is gone and it is great! So nice to see and spend time with her. The dogs are also enjoying all of the extra attention and someone to spend the days with. We made some butter toffee yesterday, as well as egg nog and watched The Help with my friend Emily from school. That was fun!

On a different note, I've finished my 23rd book for the year. The Handmaid's Tale. I started my last book this morning, A Dog's Purpose, recommended by my sister, Jenny.  I plan to finish it before Christmas. With hope I will get to read Gone with the Wind over break.

Alexis helped me cover two lamp shades for some new lamps we received from my Aunt Jane. Here are some photos to show you how they turned out. I am so happy with them and think they look great!

 Lamps beforehand.
 Pick out fabric and a lampshade. I found this one at Hobby Lobby and it came with a pre-glued shade and a wax pattern cut out. Score!
 Trace the patter and cut.

 Butters got a make-shift handkerchief. He loves it.
 Wrapping the lamp shades.
 I folded over the top and bottom and glued it down with Fabri-tac.
 This is the first shade I did. On the second, I trimmed up the extra fabric on the bottom and it turned out even better!
 Voila! I love them!!

Yummy butter addictive.

Hope all is going well. I am looking forward to the trip home at the end of the week and seeing all of my friends back home. Only 3 more days of school and 126 finals to grade. I can do it! And so can you!

Sunday, December 11, 2011


Who does not love brunch? It has to be one of the best meals. Today, Matt and I had our friends Tim and Katie over for waffles and bacon. They graciously brought yummy fruit! We had so much fun. Next time I will be sure to take photos. It was really nice to commune with these new friends of ours who I already find so dear.

I feel like everything in my life is so transient at this time. Not much feels stable.  I know our life here in Columbia will only be for three years, and those days are marching by. I can't tell how I feel about this yet. I am not looking forward to a life of a lot of traveling and chasing homes. I am a home-body and like to nest. There is also instability with my job. The nature of a teacher is to help students for a year and move them on, hopefully with new ideas, insights, and maturity. I do not want to see my students go! I really like them it makes me sad that I won't have the opportunity to see them in the halls for the next few years until they graduate. That is the unfortunate part of working at a Junior High.

There is also the lack of control over the next two years here at CPS. We will have a new principal next year, a large change in the atmosphere of the school. Then I will transition again to a high school-one of the three in the town. I have some say in where I go, but it is what is best for the students and if any of the principals want me. I will more or less be told where to work. Again, by this time, we will only be here for a year-maybe more-and it is hard. I get attached easily, especially to my students. I really want them to do so well. I want them to have chances to succeed.

As much as I try to hold onto the people and life I had in Knoxville, it seems to slip farther away everyday. I find myself upset by this I suppose because I don't feel like I have something new to take its place yet. I keep searching.

I am really looking forward to going home for Christmas. I have two more books to read for the year and I am not sure I will get them done! I am a third of the way through A Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood. This would be fine, except Alexis is coming to visit on Wednesday! We are both really excited to have her here-but I know I won't get any reading done! We plan to do some crafts and make yummy food and watch some movies.

I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas season and finding time to relax. We spend most nights in front of the tree and watching tv under lots of blankets. It has been so cold here! Stay safe and warm, my friends.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Turkey daze

Hi all!

It has been awhile since I have written. Matt and I have been busy with school and work. His law finals are next week, so he has been studying and making outlines like a good student. I am finishing up Animal Farm with my freshmen. I think they consider it lackluster. Even though I really like the book, I struggled with getting them excited about it. Our final project is a speech, so hopefully they can get into that assignment.

We took a trip to Nashville for Thanksgiving. We saw a lot of family over the break and were really able to relax. On Thanksgiving day my family drove over from East TN for dinner. I was so glad to get to see them as well. Here are some photos from our trip.

Well, I didn't take many photos of things happening. I have been learning how to use my camera on the Manual settings and this is what I got! (Except the photo of me, of course). Aren't my nephews adorable? And sister Alexis is beautiful.

Matt and I set up the Christmas tree and wrapped all the presents this week as well. I decorated while listening to holiday tunes and then drank some hot cocoa. It was all very exciting! Here are the photos I took.

Only a few more weeks until we head home for a Tennessee Christmas. I really cannot wait! Hope everyone is well and spreading the holiday cheer.