Thursday, August 27, 2015

What did I Read?

I started reading The Hour I first Believed by Wally Lamb on Tuesday.... I should stop and tell you that students started school on Monday.  I started the book at 8:30... I should also stop here and tell you that I go to bed every night at 9:30. Which means I actually get off the couch at 9:20 to let the dog out and get ready to BE in bed at 9:30.  So starting the book so "late" really wasn't smart of me.  But I really wanted to start a new book.  So I started it.

So the next day, I sat down to read a little before Bible study.  And.  I. Couldn't.  Remember. Anything. About. The. Book.  Nothing.  I couldn't remember the main character, the setting, the reason why the man (who turned out to be the main character upon investigation) was doing community service or anything else.  I had to go back and refresh my memory before I could keep reading.  That's just sad. Ha!

I know better than to start a new book the first week of school.  And know better than to start a book at 8:30 at night even on a regular week.

Oh well, sometimes you gotta live on the edge!

PS I'm really enjoying the book so far.  I'm also remembering it!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

My First Video

I made and edited my first video for my library!  I'm very excited about it.  I stepped out of my comfort zone when I made it!  And now I can't wait to make more.  My brain is swimming with ideas!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

13 First Days of School

13 first days of school. 

That doesn't seem like a lot. But when I say I've been educator for 13 years, that seems like a long time. Numbers are funny that way. 

My first day of school a Deaf Ed itinerant teacher were different from the years I was Deaf Ed self-contained which were different from the years I've been a librarian. But there's always an air of excitement. New school supplies, new clothes, new students. A new year, a new beginning.  

So here's to 13 more first days of school!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Beginning of the School Year Tired


So tired. 

I slept 12 hours Friday night. 9:30-9:30. 

There's just nothing like beginning of the school year tired!

My legs are tired from running around the campus (we are an outdoor campus that's spread out). Some things had been moved in the library this summer that had to be moved back out. I couldn't just sit there and watch the custodians haul stuff out so I joined in and helped. Except I didn't wear my tennis shoes that day and hauling stuff in flip flops, well, it's not the smartest thing I've ever done. 

My toes hurt from wearing closed toed shoes. Cuz in Texas it's all about those flip flops (gotta keep your feet cool) and my toes aren't used to be cooped up in closed toed shoes. 

But all this tiredness and all the aches and pains tell me one thing.  

My library is ready to receive students!

I dusted yesterday.

Cleaned my tables.

Set up a new poetry display.

Put out all the new books.

Bring on the students!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

I'm a Mentor

I'm very excited! I'm a mentor this year! 

This is the first time in my education career that I haven't been the newest or the youngest teacher or librarian. 

I've been a mentor teacher to college interns, practicum students & student teachers but never to a fellow coworker. 

I'm looking forward to helping her get things up and running and sharing little tidbits of knowledge. 

I'm still learning though! Like today at our library meeting I found out that I should of been tracking how much money was in my activity fund because the whole school's money goes into one activity fund. So if a secretary leaves and doesn't leave good notes then there's no way to prove how much of that account is the library's. Which ,as it turns out is a problem for me this year since our secretary from last year left. 

So much to teach, so much still to learn.  

Sunday, August 16, 2015


I'm probably thinking to hard about this. I probably let it annoy me too much. I probably need to find the humor in it like most everyone else.

But I do think about it. I do let it annoy me. And I don't find the humor in it. 

Book Nerd.

Why? Why do we call some one who loves reading a book nerd?

I mean we as librarians, reading teachers and even parents spend most of our child's early years trying to develop a love of reading only to turn around and call them a nerd when they profess to love reading. 

This drives me nuts!

We think the athlete who uses his/her body for sports is sooooo cool. 

But the kid that curls up in the corn with a good book, oh wait! They are a nerd. 

Is this why in school libraries there's a major drop in students who check out books from the library starting in 5th grade?

Is this why I start fighting my 5th graders about mid year with a "yes, you have to check out a book.", "yes, the principal says you have too." Then they get smart and realize that after they have so many books out I won't let them check anymore out until they bring me the ones they already have. So what do they do? Stop returning their books so they don't have to get new books. The little brats cuties are smart. I'll give them that!

I know it's not the only reason for the decline but maybe we need to stop calling book lovers nerds. Maybe we need to celebrate the love of reading by calling it Book Cool (I know, it doesn't have the same ring). Or what about book lover? That's an oldy but goody phrase. 

Or maybe I need to stop thinking about it and accept my nerdiness and teach students to love theirs too. 

OR perhaps I'll starts new slogan and change the world! 


I love summer because my nails stay long (there are other reasons I love summer!).

During the school year I wash my hands about every 30-45 minutes. Which now I realize, makes me sound a little crazy. But I'm not... I don't think. 

Library books are so dirty. So many little gross students touch them and leave them lying around who knows where. And they feel yucky (the books not the students).  

I typically have a class every 45 minutes so after touching so many nasty books I HAVE to wash my hands. 

All the washing makes my nails brittle. Add to that shelving books, peeling stickers off supplies and just general wear and tear my nails just break off
(The cold doesn't help either. Even in Texas where our winter really aren't that bad it's still cold enough to make them brittle).

So during the summer I enjoy my long nails!

It took 3 weeks of school before I broke my first nail. I don't know what I did but I went to pick up the book I was going to read and my thumb nail was broke. I can't have my nails uneven so had to cut them all. Hello short nails. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

No AC & Snow Cones

My car has no AC. There's a leak some where and all the freon has leaked right on out. 

In August. 

In Texas. 

In 106 degree temps. 


After I stopped at the post office yesterday I saw the snow cone shack across the street and got me a sour grape snow cone. 

Back at my house with said snow cone:

Reagan: You got a snow cone?
Me: I have no AC. 
Reagan: (giggle) But you got a snow cone without me?
Me: I have no AC. 
Reagan: (giggle) But you got a snow cone?
Me: I'm sorry. I don't what part of the sentence you don't understand. I. Have. No. AC. In. My. Car. 
Reagan: (giggle) But you could of brought me one. 
Me: I have no AC! It would have melted, women!
Reagan: (laughs) Ok. That's probably true. 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Back To The Library

I started back to work yesterday. I really enjoy these three day before the teachers come back. My days are mostly uninterrupted. I get a lot done.  But I do like when the teachers come back. I like pulling books for teachers and showing them new materials we have in the library. 

Today I processed some books I got from my Junior Library Guild subscription. After I processed them I decided to burn my box (if you haven't heard of No Box Thinking you need to check out the Twitter chat #nbtchat on Sunday's at 8:00 central time) and make a video. 

I read wrote blurbs about each of the books then videoed myself talking about each book. I'm super excited about the video. I know these videos are nothing new but it's the first time I've done one. 

Now my problem is I can't edit it. The Mac was taken from the library so I can't use iMovies. I've tried Animoto and Magisto but both want to automatically edit the video and it's not editing the way I want it edited. I also don't have admin right on my circulation desktops so I can't download Windows Movie Maker. 

So... HELP! What can I use (preferably free) to edit this video?

Breakfast For The School Year

For about the last three years I have made breakfasts and frozen them for the school year. I know it sounds crazy but I hate thinking "What am I going to have for breakfast tomorrow?"  In addition to that I hate mornings. I mean seriously hate waking up. Like don't look at me much less talk to me in the mornings. Jay and Reagan know not to talk to me unless there's like, an emergency.

One morning: 

Jay: Is it safe to talk to you?
Me: I think so. 
Jay: (starts talking)
Me: Sorry. I was wrong. Stop talking. 

I've digressed. 

So to help my morning routine I started making something for breakfast on Sunday's and eating it all week but by Friday I was sick of eating whatever I made. 

So Plan B. 

At the beginning of the year (school year that is) I pull my favorite breakfast recipes and make them. I cut them into individual serving sizes, put them in baggies, put those baggies into a labeled gallon size baggies and freeze them. 

I like to watch my weight so I use some Weight Watcher recipes. My favorites:

 Italian Sausage and Egg Casserole

Cheesy Brunch Bake

English muffin sandwich with turkey sausage and fat free shredded cheddar

Egg, turkey bacon, mushroom burritos 

Pancakes with turkey bacon down the center  

Whenever I go home to Houston I alternately get kolaches from the Original Kolache Shop (sausage & fruit) and bagels from Panera's to add to my breakfast collection. Also on Thursdays the school cafeteria serves breakfast pizza. Since we are a Title I school teachers get free breakfast like all the students. Breakfast pizza is my favorite (and it's free!). 

I made 47 work day breakfasts this morning. From start to finish (pulling out the first ingredient to kitchen cleaned) it takes me about 2 1/2 hours. 

I put them all on the same shelf in the freezer so that it's easy for me to grab one the night before and defrost in the fridge. 

Some funnies:

At one point I turned around and the fridge was open. Oops!

Of course Maggie thinks I need help. She does clean the floors quite well!

Friday, August 7, 2015

Binging on Netflix

I did not grow up with cable (side note, my parents now have cable...). We lived in Houston and had access to 10ish TV channels. 

My husband grew up in Tyler. They only had 3 or 4 channels. He had cable. 

The first year of our marriage we lived in Nacogdoches while I finished my last year of college. We had one TV channel that came in good and one channel that would come in if you angled the antenna just right, lifted your left leg, crossed your two right middle fingers, and twisted your tongue. Just. Right. Bam! Second TV channel!

When we moved to Houston I assumed we'd get rid of cable. 10 channels are enough, right? Apparently I was wrong. We kept cable. 

16 years later we are back in Nacogdoches, we decided to take the plunge and get rid of cable. The idea was we didn't watch all the channels that we had. We did waste time watching shows that really weren't worth watching. And it would save us money every month (this is favorite part!). 

We did get Netflix and Hulu. Because sometime you do just need to veg on some TV. 

This seemed like a good choice. 

Except I HAVE WASTED SO MUCH TIME BINGING ON TV SERIES. I mean, for real! So much time down the drain binging on nothing of substance. I have NEVER read so little in one summer. 

It's embarrassing. 

I cannot make myself stop watching after one episode. So I have refused to start a new series. When I feel myself inching toward the remote I mentally slap myself and think of the hours wasted. And. I. Pick. Up. A. Book. 

The crazy thing is I didn't really watch that much TV before. Sure I had a couple of favorite shows I liked to watch but I always preferred reading. So to say I was shocked that I binged watched series is to put it mildly. 

I have learned my lesson! 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

One For The Win

I've been struggling a bit. Ok, a lot.   I don't think I'm ready to put it out there on the World Wide Web for everyone's general viewing. But I have been talking to those close to me about it. 

Today I had a win. And it's taken a HUGE load off my mind. I mean HUGE! I feel like I can deal with the other stuff now that this one thing had been fixed. 

I really needed this fix too. I hate feeling down, angry, and letting other people have rule over my emotions. This one fix has given me hope and made me less down & much less angry. 

I'm not a down or angry person. I don't like feeling that way. It's nice to feel more like myself again!

This has also reminded me who I am and what I can do. And I need to be that person. 

So I'm taking this win, loving it, hugging it, and moving on to how I can the other thing that I really need fixed. I can deal with the other four things if I can get the two big things fix. 

Sorry this post is so vague and full of "its". I'm just not comfortable labeling my "its".