Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Kind of a big deal

Since the time I was about 5, I knew in my heart that I wanted to be a teacher. I get asked a lot if it was because I had an awesome kindergarten teacher. It's not. I had a horrible kindergarten teacher who never read to us or said nice things. She was mean and when I run into her in public, I avoid her. Even though there is no way she would recognize me.

The reason I wanted to be a teacher was because of my first grade teacher who, handed me a book called The Art Lesson. For those of you who don't know, the story is autobiographical and about a boy who wants to be an artist and his art teacher finally sees the potential in him and tells him that he can do art his way, after he does what the class is asked.

This book is one of many, many books by Tomie dePaola that I've fallen in love with and devoured and shared with countless groups of children.

This book, this book alone is what turned on the switch in my head that said, I WANT TO BE THIS TEACHER.

And... AND.

Tomie dePaola recently won something called The Laura Ingalls Wilder medal. Something that is only given out every 2 years and is kind of a big deal.

Tomie dePaola, author of the book that inspired me to become a teacher will accept his medal and will be the guest of honor at a fancy dinner... in New Orleans.

At the same Library conference that I randomly decided to go to on the other side of the country.

Tell me, if that isn't meant to be, I don't know what is.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sunday Sweets Volume 8

It has been such a long time since I've done one of these but, last week was so difficult (see, disgusting) and I need some motivation to want to leave the house and do it all again tomorrow.

1. This amazing review for The Social Network which I am still in nerd love with. Expect a giant post just about how this is a movie that defines a generation sometime sooner, did I mention my nerd love?

My favorite part of this review is this:

"The best films are rarely about just one thing, but rather that one thing as reflected through a variety of narrative prisms.  And there is something to be said about a film that manages to distill an era while profoundly conveying a character study within. David Fincher’s “The Social Network” may be the quintessential story of young Machiavellian entrepreneurship in an age of streamlined communication, but it is also a story of the social disconnect that can be as galvanizing as any other source of ambition…for better or worse. "

{found here

2. That sweet, sweet feeling of finishing your math homework. Even better is when you find out this morning that you have math homework (class was canceled last week so we just assumed that she would push things back but um, didn't) and you are done with it before noon.

3. This dress (found here). I don't know what it is about it but I just fell in love with it.

 4. I recently discovered haiku bags and am completely in love. In fact, I was so smitten with them (and their clearance section) that I bought a smaller bag to take with me to New Orleans. Check them out here.

Alright, I'm off to write a few lesson plans, clean myself up and stir up some motivation for the upcoming week.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Oh man. This day was intense. I'm not the biggest fan of 3 day weekends because coming back from them is always hard and this week, it just seemed impossible to recover.

But, we made it through. 

I just got home from seeing a group of my kids from work in their school play. Maybe I got a little teary and maybe it was a really good reminder after a less than awesome day that all the crap work is worth it and there is nothing like being hugged after a play by a 6th grader that you've worked with since she was in 3rd grade (no really, she came to me before her Mom) because she was so happy you were there.

Now on to the blanks. As always, link up here if you'd like to play.

1.   My favorite quote is     I really don't think I could ever pick one. I have a whole wall in my room filled with framed quotes. Some of my favorites are: 

"I’ll tell you what I do want. I want someone who will be monogamous, and nice to his mother. And I want someone who likes musicals but knows to just shut his mouth when I’m watching Lost. And I want someone who thinks being really into cars is lame and strip clubs are gross. I want someone who will actually empty the dishwasher instead of just taking forks out as needed, like I do. I want someone with clean hands and feet and beefy forearms like a damn Disney prince. And I want him to genuinely like me, even when I’m old. And that’s what I want”. –Liz Lemon

"Reading is the ultimate weapon, destroying ignorance, poverty and despair before they can destroy us. A nation that doesn't read much doesn't know much. And a nation that doesn't know much is more likely to make poor choices in the hom...e, the marketplace, the jury box and the voting booth. And those decisions ultimately effect an entire nation, the literate and the illiterate." -Jim Trelease 

"It was a matter of perspective, I began to see.
The whole world was crazy; I'd flattered myself by assuming I was a semifinalist." -Wally Lamb

2.  A bad habit I have is   oh boy. I wash my hands a lot. Like, too much. I also twirl my hair when I'm really nervous or in an uncomfortable situation. 

3.  The first time I felt like a "grown up" was   probably writing a check or paying a bill. I can talk about the most recent time and that was teaching writing today!

4.  Weekends are   my recharge time. My time to have a sleepover with my favorite friend and deal with life.

5.  When I was a child I wished my name was     Kimberly, just like the pink power ranger.  .

6.  I wish      I could make things better. I wish I could make everyone happy. I wish I had a better job, that I was done with school, that I was thinner, smarter and better. I wish that I had more time or time would slow down. I wish I could stay in bed tomorrow and read a book.

7.  A secret I have is    I love being single. Except for on Valentine's day and New Year's Eve. Those are the only days it bothers me .

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Instead of Content

Oh man.

Life lately has been a careful balance of disgusting and awesome. Isn't that how it always is?

Instead of writing something miserable (WORK! SCHOOL! LIFE!) I'll just share with you the best minute of film from the year.

I'm so kind.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Happy Friday!

The fact that this week is already over is amazing to me simply for the fact that thanks to the snow, I only had to work 3 days. This weekend is going to be full of homework (expect to hear about that later) and hopefully a sleepover but my life has been slightly shuck up recently, in an okay way (also, expect to hear about this later) so I'm not really sure. 

Now... on to the blanks.

As always, link up here if you'd like to play along.

1.   I feel happy when  I'm teaching, seeing a movie with a friend or having a late night conversation about life. 

2.  I get silly when    it hits a certain point at night and I'm still in class. Who would have thought that being in a math class at 9 at night would give a group of adults the giggles.

3.  Something that makes me sad is  when I find out about my student's backgrounds. Usually heartbreaking and they don't really prepare you for that in college.

4.  Something that makes me annoyed is   people who don't do their portion of group work, teachers who lay on tons of complicated math homework and how difficult it has been to find someone to do my peer observation.

5.  A time that I've been truly surprised was       I'm really not sure. Is it sad to say that I can't think of one?

6.  I am so thankful for      my friends who deal with me being a giant train wreck all the time. My host teacher who is the most patient, understanding and wise human being on Earth .

7.  I feel loved when    friends want to make plans with me (I'm usually the plan maker). When someone asks me about school or my life or just does something that shows me that they care.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


{found here}

We got around 5 inches of snow last night which have been beyond exciting if it wasn't for the small fact that I had to drive home from school when around 2 inches were already on the ground.

It was a terrible drive, with several points where I couldn't see where the road stopped and started at all.  At one point, I contemplated just pulling over and just staying in the car until the storm passed, whenever the storm passed.

I'm bringing this up because while my life flashed before my eyes and I was pretty sure this snow storm was going to be the end of me, all I could think was "it's okay, Whitney. You saw how Lost ends, you've lived your life".

And that's how my brain works.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The one about NOLA Part 2

{found here}

So, her solution to my constant depression and annoyance with my 60 year old existance was for me to go to New Orleans. Not just to wander aimlessly but to go to the ALA conference.

At first, I just laughed it off. Knowing that there is no way on Earth, I would do this.

Being ENFP and adorable as all shit, she told me to make a list of all the reasons why I didn't want to go and what I was afraid of.

Well, the list looked like this:
1. Getting Lost
2. Getting Lost
3. Being homesick.

Really, Whitney? Really.

So, we talked about it at length and she told me to buy my plane ticket and she would meet me in the airport. 

I just had to buy the ticket and everything would be golden from there. 

I could do that. I can do that. I did do that.

Now my plane ticket is purchased (I'm leaving at 6 in the morning and stopping in Denver before finally making it there at 1). I'm registered for the conference (I even get a super cool badge with my name printed on it all fancy like).

It's happening.

Now, I just need to make it to June.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The one about NOLA Part 1

{found here}

I'm going to New Orleans in June.

Just in case you have missed the 27, 000 posts about it since I made the decision a few weeks ago.

One night, I was on facebook chat (where dreams are made) with one of my favorite people on Earth.  This person is a super cool librarian and the person I want to be when I grow up.

I was complaining to her about how unhappy I am with my life. Just the fact that I have been in school for 17 years straight (REALLY) and have never gone on an adventure of any sort. The past year or so, I've just really felt like an adventure was in order.

Her solution? "Just come to New Orleans with me". No big deal.

Except that it is a big deal. Everything is a big deal for me.

Friday, January 7, 2011


I haven't written a whole lot about the week after Christmas (see amazing) because it all feels so self centered and like my life resemebled a snow globe, which it isn't and it definitely doesn't.

Here's what you need to know. Out of the 8 days following Christmas, I only slept in my own bed once.

Not in the skanky fun way, but in the oh man, I'm away from my family and spending time with my friends who are much more my family in every sense of the word way. 

Needless to say, it was amazing to have the opportunity to be away from life before this week started and we hit in the ground running both in my classroom and in third grade.

**I also want to say hi to my new followers. I'm excited that you are here! Please feel free to ask any questions and leave me a message or a comment introducing yourself.

Fill in the blanks

It has been a while since I've done one of these. As a reward for finishing my math homework first thing this morning, here it is. If you're interested, find it and link up here.

1.   Winter is   my favorite. I love wearing jackets and scarves. I love the constant possibility of snow. It's great.

2.  Summer is   completely lovely but definitely the worst time of year to be stuck in school.

3.  If it were summer instead of winter right now I'd    go on an adventure.  Well, I'd make a sad attempt at finishing my homework for this week then go on an adventure. 

4.  My favorite thing to do in winter is   bake something amazing. The oven makes the house warm and I can watch the rain/snow from inside. Perfect.

5.  My favorite thing to do in summer is       bonfires. For sure.

6.  The ideal outfit for a sunny summer day is   skirts, sandals, tank tops and a sweatshirt. It's Washington, a sweatshirt is a must. 

7.  The ideal outfit for a frigid winter day is     lots of layers. Comfy jeans. A scarf. 

This weekend, I have 2 books I plan to read, a sleepover tentatively planned for tomorrow night and a lot of recovery time. Getting back into the routine this weekend has been rough.