Wednesday, September 10, 2014

What's Going on Wednesday?

Hey, remember me?

No? Well here's my story:

School started and I got TRES busy and tired and sadly blogging took the back seat. Let's not even talk about how I have 364 unread blogs posts in my bloglovin feed. #bloggerfail.

Anyway, I'm the proud kindergarten teacher of 19 kindergarteners and let's just say - they are adorable and fun, but they keep me on my toes!

Unfortunately, that's all I can really say about school. There was a section in my teacher's contract specifically about blogs and personal websites and it basically said that I can say nothing. Which I get… kinda... but it irks me slightly because I feel like someone is putting guidelines on my writing and my blogging which is my outlet. {and trust me, these days I need my outlet) Of course I never would have blogged about anything inappropriate, but I can't even talk about the crazy roller coaster that we've been on in the last few weeks. It's annoying. Therefore I haven't written... hence the silence over here.

{I wonder if they put that little stipulation in the contract because they googled me and found out that I have a blog. It's not hard ya know. I google people all the time. I wouldn't be surprised.}

Okay so if I can't write about school… what can I tell you that would be of interest?

A few weeks ago, I got a fitbit. I'd like to tell you that I'm making it to 10,000 steps everyday, but let's be honest. If I haven't hit my 10,000 while I'm at school, I'm pretty exhausted when I get home and walking/running is usually the last thing I want to do. But I'm trying. Last night, I walked the rest of my 5 miles while I watched the rest of MasterChef. Just walking in place. In my living room. That counts, right?

The truth is, I want someone to walk with. I don't like walking alone (or running alone for that matter) but Chris is gone at the moment, so I guess it's up to me to figure out. Also it's been SO DARN HOT when I get home from school so I just don't want to do anything unless I can do it in the air conditioning. I suppose I could go over to the clubhouse and walk on the treadmills there, but… hm, I'm not feeling it.

Chris and I are going to the Marine Corps Ball in November so I have been looking at dresses online. I know you will probably recommend Rent the Runway (RTR) to me, but here's the thing, I just have a weird body shape (in my opinion) and I will likely need alterations, I don't think I can just order a dress two days before the event and be satisfied. I need to order it like NOW so I can make sure I look put together and get it altered (most likely shortened… seeing as I'm a shortie)

Right now I'm looking at places like Macy's and Nordstrom's. I can't decided if a short dress is okay for a Ball or if I should go with a longer one? (The last Air Force Ball that I went to two years ago, I wore a short dress, and I think that it was fine… but are the Marines the same way? Can we play our AF card??) I would prefer a short dress because long dresses make me look even shorter, but I don't want to stick out if I'm the only one with a short dress. Suggestions? Comments?

I'm looking at dresses that are dark blue (because DUH, I look good in navy) and something that has an element of lace to it.

Errm, okay. I'm hungry, time to go feed myself. Making dinner for one sucks.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Projects Around the House

I'm so glad that Chris is back from the desert and he finally got to see all of the little projects that I have been working on around the house! My mom was here the first week in August and she helped me paint and get started on two projects around the house. I felt so accomplished to get everything done without Chris!

Okay, well he did have to hang the picture frames for me… but that's ALL I left for him. He says that hanging things is his nemesis (which seems ridiculous to me, but whatevs) So I did my best to hang as much as I could so he wouldn't have to scream and yell at the drill/stud finder/level/screws or whatever.

{Fun side story - once when I was having him hang my IKEA wire picture holder, he got so mad that I was forced to play the sound of music soundtrack for him. Who can stay mad when you're singing "Lay ee odl lay ee odl lay hee hoo?"}

Anyway, I'll start with the bedroom pictures because that's what I tackled first:

So the plan was to create a focus wall - painting or wallpapering the back wall of our master bedroom. {The wall that the bed is up against}

I started with this idea for three picture frames above the bed:



And since I'm into all things nautical these days, I decided to go with a sort of nautical color for the wall. At first I thought maybe I should use removable wallpaper, or maybe fabric, but in the end… what's easier and faster than a can of paint? So my mom and I went to Lowe's and we picked out a great nautical blue color and got to work. 


Just after one coat, what a change!


Still needs another coat or two...

NOT the finished product, but at least I got my bed back. I only had to spend 1 night on the air mattress in the other room.

Next up were the curtains for the room. I wanted something simple, so I chose white curtains from ikea. I really only needed the 98" curtains, but of course they were no where to be found so I get to get the longer ones and then hem them. And by hem them I mean I used the iron hem… No sewing for me. They longer ones were more expensive, but you know… I just didn't want this project to drag on and on, so I just figured that spending a little extra to have it done was probably better for us in the long run. Plus I really wanted to have it all done by the time Chris got home! 

I found screws and hung the curtain rod all by myself {with the ladder and everything} and although it took a few tries to get the curtain pinned and the right length I got it hemmed and it looks great! 

I did get a bruise to prove my toughness with a ladder and drill:


I got some pictures frames from IKEA also {are you sensing a trend?} and I found some great San Diego pictures HERE. I ordered them and then popped them into the frames. They look great! At first I thought I would go with black and white photos, but I decided that the colored ones with the blues would look great also. 

So here is the finished product:






I love these pictures! What do you think?

Then I also decided to finally create some window treatments for our three windows in the living room.  I didn't want anything that would block out all the light we get, but I wanted something that would make it look more lived in. I came across Carmel's faux roman shade tutorial while my mom was here, and I knew that's what I wanted to do.

We went to all kinds of fabric stores all over the city, and I just couldn't find anything I liked… but then when we were at {guess where…. just guess….}




IKEA… {pretend you're shocked} I found some fabric that said it was black & white, but it really looked dark grey & white to me which is what I was looking for! 

Since I am not really great with fabric/don't have a lot of experience, my mom helped me start the first one. But I am proud to say, I finished all the others and they really turned out great! I even put up all THREE curtain rods. And I have a bruise on my leg to prove it. {banged it while climbing up the ladder}

I pretty much followed the tutorial, I measured, pinned, iron hemmed, measured again, and then used my hot glue gun at the end to pin it up. I honestly put those curtains on and off the rods like 10 times EACH. But I got them looking just the way I wanted and I'm really happy with the result! 




So although my summer is over, I now feel like I at least made some progress around the house. Chris loves it and especially thinks our bedroom is much more cozy now! I agree!


**In case you're wondering - we do live in military housing and we were told that we could paint as long as we prime the wall(s) back before we move out. Since I just painted 1 wall I didn't think it would be too difficult {for Chris - come on, I painted it!} to prime one wall whenever we get orders. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Half Marathon that turned into a 5k

Remember this post?

So… in May & June I was trying to run consistently every day. I had a schedule. It was on the refrigerator, I checked off the days I did. It was great.

What wasn't great was that I was on summer vacation and I would literally wake up every morning and absolutely DREAD getting up because it would mean I would have to run.

It was putting a huge damper on my summer vacation. So after a nice little chat with my mother she gave me permission to quit. That may sound weird to you, but she knows me probably the best of almost anyone and she knows how much I hate running. She also knows how much I love summers and how important summers are for teachers. So she basically told me to stop ruining my summer. I don't like running, don't spend the entire summer doing something I hate. It's true. And I decided she was right.

I probably could still do a half marathon if there was no time limit. But the strict 3 hour time on this one had me pretty worried.

It's still on my bucket list for someday… It would be a race that I would attempt to walkrun. But this wasn't the right time.

So instead of running the America's Finest City Half Marathon on Sunday, I ran the 5k.

And I did RUN. The whole thing, which I'm pretty darn proud of considering I don't think I ran at all in July or August. {I did other exercise stuff, I'm not that lazy}

Here is the summary:

- It was hot and humid by 6:45am when the 5K started. {Which made me even more glad that I wasn't trying to do the half}

- I pretty much ran the whole thing, there was one little area where I walked for just a minute, it was after I had just ran up an uphill and I just needed to catch my breath.

- It took me 33:53. Which is pretty good. I wanted to be under 30, but I get overheated so easily, it just wasn't going to happen.

- This was Chris' 3rd half marathon of the year and it was the final race in the triple crown. So he got TWO medals. I am definitely a proud wife :)

- They handed out popsicles at the end of the race, which was brilliant. Grape please!

- I'm am SUPER sore.

Balboa Park
In the early morning.
While it was still dark. 


We had to be there SO early for Chris to catch the bus to Point Loma for the Half, that meant that I stood around for a long time waiting for the 5k to start. 


Can we start this thing already!?

America's Finest City Half Marathon 5k


Done. 
Hot and sweaty, but done. 

 I had plenty of time to stand around and cool off and stretch while I was waiting for Chris to finish. Actually I finished around 7:20 which meant that he had actually only been running for about 20 minutes. 
(They started the 5k 15 mins before they started the Half)



Done!

Triple Crown Medal!


Successful running day for the Plumes! 

And then we went home and took a nap. 
And ate burgers and went grocery shopping. 
And then took another nap. 
When you run really fast in the morning you're allowed to take two naps in one day. 
It's in the Bible. 
Somewhere.
I just can't remember where. 

The end. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Easy & Delicious Crock-Pot Pulled Pork Sandwiches


Last week I had a meeting at school {the emergency kind … more details to come about that} and we were informed that it would be starting at 5pm and we weren't going to probably get out until 7:30pm or maybe later.  Even if I did eat at 4:30 before the meeting, it was during our prime dinner time and I get hangry pretty easily and that's not pretty for anyone… especially not new coworkers!

My solution: Offer to bring dinner for everyone! 

Thankfully our staff isn't too huge, so it wasn't like I was feeding an army or anything. I decided to go with my favorite pulled pork sandwiches. They are so easy and as long as you remember to put them in the cock-pot in the morning, you're golden. 

This is one of our favorite sandwiches, and what's even better is that the leftovers are just as good. 

{Anyone else REALLY picky about leftovers?!}


Ingredients:

  • 4lbs pork roast {shoulder or butt}
  • 2 large onions
  • 1.5 cups ginger ale
  • 1 18oz bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce {I like Garland Jack's!}



Directions:

1. Slice one onion and place in crock pot. 

2. Put the pork in and cover with the other onion, sliced. Pour the ginger ale over pork and onions. 

3. Cover and cook on LOW for 6-8 hours. 

4. Remove the meat, strain and save the onions, discard all liquid. With two forks, shred the meat, discarding any fat, bones or skin. 

4. Return the shredded meat and the onions to the crock pot, stir in the barbecue sauce. Continue to cook on LOW for at least another hour {up to 4 hours.}

5. Serve with hamburger buns or rolls and additional barbecue sauce if desired. Leftovers freeze well! 

This is so easy and I promise you'll be amazed at how tasty it is! 
Try them tonight!

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Last Day of Summer Vacation

Today is my last day of summer vacation. 
{excuse me while I go hide and cry.}

On Monday, I'll head back to work and two weeks later the kids will come. This is always a hard time of year for me. I love having a routine and teaching and working at a school… but I also love being free and being on break. Obviously, I can't have both. 

Technically my summer break started on June 4th, so I've had 10 weeks off. 10 weeks! What did I do for the last 10 weeks?! 

June was my wind-down month… I worked out a lot, started going to the gym for classes with Ash, I read books that I wanted to read, I went to the beach with Chris, and threw a baby shower for some blogger friends. I went through my teaching stuff {and relocated it to new tubs thanks to Ashley's donation} and I started on some projects for the wedding.

Beaching it in Coronado

My first and only Zumba class

Ring Bearer signs that I made for the wedding!

They are so adorbs I can't even stand it.
July was the wedding in Virginia {which I PROMISE those pictures are coming… Kait's photographer is just taking longer than I expected.} When we got back, I worked some more on labeling my books, had some date nights with Chris, said goodbye to some blogger friends and attended teacher boot camp!



It's official!!
Working hard at teacher boot camp


And now it's halfway through August {WHAT?} and so far I've spent a lot of time with my mom, and done little decorating projects around the house. I've also been school clothes shopping and now…. it's back to reality.

I don't feel like I was really that productive… but then again, what are summers for if you can't just relax and do things in your own time?

Although I wish I could stay home a little bit longer, I do feel like this year it going to be SO much better than last year. First of all, just having my own classroom with my own kids, and being full time… it's a huge improvement over driving around to different schools and only working part time. {Although, I think I might miss my 3 day weekends} I also think that the people I'm working with will be SO much better. I didn't talk a lot about it on here, but I had a few issues at one of the jobs I worked at last year. The other teacher and the director ganged up on me and would talk behind my back and it was just not a good working environment for me. Thankfully, I'm already getting to know my fellow teachers and they are all really sweet and I just know we are going to have a great year! :)

One of the nice things about opening up a new school is that the principal was able to hand pick every teacher this year. He did so very carefully and I know we have a great team! 

Well, my handsome husband got home late last night from what seemed like a terribly long exercise in the desert. I'm so glad he's back and since he took the day off, we are going to go spend it together! Ciao!

He's awesome



Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What I'm afraid of

I guess you could call me a bit of a scaredy cat… I'm actually afraid of a lot of things, as it turns out.


  • Bugs. Anything that crawls, flies, buzzes… and the bigger they are the more scared I get. 
  • The Dark. This is a real fear here, people. I get myself so freaked out when it gets dark out. I hate daylight savings time because I'm scared to be outside when it's dark. So from like 5pm I try to stay inside in the winter. I also am scared of the beach at night. It's so dark, and things could be coming in from the ocean. Ah! I just don't think I will ever thrive in a place like Alaska, I'm scared of the dark so winters would be hard and long. 


  • Dogs. Truth, I'm a little bit scared of dogs. Not ALL dogs, I can get over my fear once I meet nicer dogs and they get used to me, but a big dog in a yard growling and barking at me while I jog past? Nightmare.







  • Crime. Maybe this is a duh thing. But I'm completely scared of crimes. I'm paranoid that I'm going to be robbed or mugged or I will have things stolen from me. 
  • Doctors. I don't like going, I'm scared of going. I'm scared of being told I'm dying or that I have to go through some really painful medical procedure. I finally worked up the nerve to go to the doctors like a month ago… first time in 4 years. 
  • Rattlesnakes, Mountain Lions and other things that live in the desert. After moving to the desert of San Diego, I am definitely scared of all of the things that could possibly be lurking on any hike or walk I decide to go on… thankfully, I haven't seen anything. yet. 

  • Being Left Out. I am afraid of feeling lonely and left out. I over analyze everything and let my mind go wild as I imagine friends and acquaintances purposefully leaving me out of things or becoming close and forgetting about me. 




  • Mascots, clowns, people in costumes. I don't like the disguise! I just want to know who you really are! And when they don't talk, and just stare at you, that's the worst. 


I could probably add more things to this list… but I won't at the moment. 

What things are you scared and afraid of? 



Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Personal Mission Statement

Do you have a personal mission statement that you use and adhear to throughout your life?

Yesterday I talked about how I went through a two day training for The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People {by Stephen Covey} and today I thought I'd talk about how to make a personal mission statement. To be fair, I haven't actually finished writing mine, but I really liked the steps that we took to start thinking about it. 



Having a personal mission statement {or a family mission statement} goes right along with Habit 2 {of the 7 habits} which is "Begin with the end in mind." Basically, having clear definition of your goals, gives you desired results. When you have a personal mission statement it clarifies what is important to you and gives you focus. It allows you to design your life, instead of having it designed for you and it guides your day-to-day decisions. Ultimately, it gives you a greater sense of meaning and purpose. 




So here are the steps that we took:

1. The first thing to do is to write up some of the roles that you have. For example, I'm a wife, teacher, sister, friend, daughter, etc.

2. Then you can identify and write a person's name for each role. So for wife - I would write Chris. If there is more than one person for your role {such as mom or daughter} just pick one, no one's feelings will get hurt. Promise.

3. Finally, think about your future 80th birthday celebration. Think about what you want each key person to say about you on our 80th birthday. What kind of influence do you want to have on each person?

For example, in my role as a teacher, I want my students to say "She loves us and is a cheerleader for us. She wants us to be the best that we can be."

Then you can think about some things that you can do to make those statements become a reality. If I want my student to say that I was a loving teacher and that I believe in them, then I need to really, truly love them. I need to prepare them and believe in them and help them to reach their potential. 

From that exercise you can start drafting your mission statement. 



"I want to the kind of person my dog already thinks I am."

"The mission of our family is to create a nurturing place of order, love, happiness, and relaxation, and to prove opportunities for each person to become responsibly independent and effectively interdependent, in order to achieve worthwhile purposes."

"I live to serve my talents as communicator, artist and independent businesswoman. I create balance in work, play and community. I inspire those I interact with."


Do these inspire you to create your own mission statement? It does for me. Like I said, I haven't finished mine yet, and I actually would like to make a family one with Chris. I would like to incorporate our goals into our mission statement. 

Do you have a personal or family mission statement? How did you arrive at your statement? I'm curious to learn more! 

Monday, August 11, 2014

Oh. Hello.

It's been a few weeks since I've blogged because I've been so busy! Busy in a good way - but also busy in a way that has made my last few weeks of summer go by so fast. I don't like it!

Let me summarize the last few weeks in bullet points: {because why not?}


  • Two weeks ago I went to my school's "teacher boot camp" It was on the USD campus and it was so beautiful! I met all of the other teachers that I will be teaching with this year, and we got to spend some time training for the 7 Habits and also unit and PBL training. It was a great week - but terribly exhausting. I forgot how much work full time teaching is. And I wasn't even actually teaching yet.

This was our view from right outside our classroom - absolutely gorgeous! 
  • On the last day of boot camp, I ran (drove really fast) to the airport to get my mom during my lunch break and then she spent all of last week with me. Chris is away right now, so it was nice to have some girl time with her!
  • I made some updates to the house… but it's a surprise for Chris so as soon as he sees it, I will blog about it ;-)
  • I love summer, and I love not working. I mean, I'm sure I will love getting back into a teaching routine, too. I do LOVE teaching… but I just also love summer vacation. Why can't I just have both?
  • I also love Coronado. My mom and I went to the beach there twice last week for a few hours. It's just so beautiful, and sunny and the water wasn't too cold. And there was no seaweed. I want to live there. I just need like 5 million dollars first. #nobigdeal
  • My house is a mess, and I'm finding it difficult to clean it. I hate cleaning. I wish I had a maid. Again, maybe the 5 million dollars would help. 
  • San Diego opened a new fish market last week and we went to go check it out. It was very crowded and I'm thinking that if we actually want any fresh fish we'll have to go right when it opens. I do think some crab or lobster on labor day would be a great way to kick off the last day before school starts. Ugh... I can't believe it's so soon. 
And now that we are at least a third into August, it seems appropriate for me to share my selfies for July, right?

{Does it seem like I seem to make the same face a lot? I'll work on that.}

In other {good} news… the pictures from the wedding {not ours - our best friends} have finally been posted, which means I should be able to get my hands on some good ones to blog about soon! 

Also, I went to the movies today {and saw The Hundred Foot Journey - which was SO cute and I really liked} and I saw a preview for INTO THE WOODS which is coming out on Christmas day! So exciting. I also want to see the new Annie Movie. What's the most recent movie you've seen? What are you anxious to see? 

xo,