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Warning - This is a long post with a lot of catching up-to-do since I have been MIA.
I am sorry I have been missing in action. I have been staying up-to-date on reading everyone's blogs, but it just does not seem possible for me to sit down and write my own. I have been exhausted lately. Let me catch you up on what's been going on:
Two Weeks Ago -
The cheerleading squad I coached was asked to perform at the pregame show for the Tennessee Volunteers. We cheered that Friday night at a school an hour away, came home for about an hour, and boarded the school bus (YES, a school bus for a six plus hour drive) at midnight in the pouring down rain. We drove all night to get to Knoxville in time for them to practice with the other squads. The girls got to sleep, but the other coach and I had to stay awake in order to make sure the bus driver was OK. It was all worth it when the girls got to perform on the field before the game.
Yes, rain and all they had a good time.
We stayed over night in a hotel and boarded the bus to go back home bright and early the next morning. Let's just say I was so glad to get home and sleep.
Once we got back, I had to go into full power to prepare for homecoming. We had exactly a week in between, but it was full of planning PowderPuff, practicing for Pep Rally, planning for Homecoming Royalty, and much more. Our town takes homecoming very serious and everything is pretty much on the cheerleaders and their coaches.
This Week -
This week was homecoming. Here is a recap of our Tomcats Gone Wild week:
Monday - The Hunted and The Hunter (Animal Print and Camo Day); Cheerleading practice from 4 - 6
Tuesday - Color Day; Powderpuff Games starting at 6
Wednesday - Wildly Tacky Day; Homecoming Royalty Practice at 3:30
Thursday - Wild Wild West Day; Freshman Football Game at 6:00
Friday - Purple and White Day; Pep Rally at 10:30; All schools dismissed at 11:30; Parade at 1:00; Tailgating at 3:00; Varsity Game at 7:30; Crowning of Queen at Halftime
Although the other schools did not get to participate in the dress-up days, everyone participates in Friday's events. Pretty much the whole town shuts down.
One of my students and some crazy cheerleaders in the back before the parade. The coaches always get to drive John Deere gators while the cheerleaders walk and roller blade passing out goodies.
On top of all this, I gained a new student on Thursday. This makes 21 students. My classroom is only equipped for only 20 students so I have been having to figure out how to make it all work. One of my students needed make-up work for a whole week due to a family emergency. We had a fire drill due to the fire marshall visiting during my planning time so I missed it, and I received so many phone calls and visits from the community asking about homecoming stuff that I couldn't keep up with it. Even though it was a lot, it was well worth it in the end. Of course, I crashed Friday night after it was done!
I am still waiting to hear if the Fire Marshall approved my canopy entrance to the classroom. He is sometimes very picky about things, but my principal said she was going to fight for me. We will see how it goes. I would hate to take it all down:
I meant to share these pictures awhile back since they are from the first week of school, but most of the things have stayed the same. The monkeys are vines are gone to make room for student work, but the door still looks the same.
I have been missing in action the past couple of weeks due to total chaos. It is definitely football season. There are so many things going on with school and cheerleading. Hopefully, things will calm down soon. I apologize for not having Wednesday's Word of Wisdom last week. I had all intentions of doing so, but our weekly football game got changed to a different night due to storms and so I spent my night rearranging plans and making sure everything was set for a night earlier.
This devotion is definitely appropriate for how I am feeling today. My inspiration came from a Cornerstone devotion that I received a couple of weeks ago.
I am very overwhelmed this week! I have a Freshman Football game tomorrow night, a Varsity Football game Friday night that is about an hour away, and then the girls and I leave at midnight Friday night for Knoxville to cheer at a UT game on Saturday. On top of cheerleading, I just found out that the 1st and 2nd graders at our school will be taking the SAT-10 next week. We have to have everything taken down or covered in our rooms! I also have wife duties, grad school, and piano. It's crazy right now.
This has been my verse the past few weeks. I am overwhelmed, but my strength comes from the Lord. He knew all of this was coming before I did. As the teachers at my school has created as our theme quote for this year, "It is what it is." I have to take what I am given and count my blessings.
Are any of you feeling overwhelmed right now? How do you manage a blog and the craziness of life? (Obviously, I am not doing a great job right now.) What verse do you go to when you are overwhelmed?
I pray that you are able to keep from being overwhelmed this year. I pray that you keep God as your Rock. I pray that if you do become overwhelmed that your remember that God has a plan and He is your strength.
*Sorry this post is probably more for me than you, but I did want to share what was on my heart real quick.*
Have you started back to school? What is one thing you dread every year? Honestly, I can say I dread working with some of the other adults in my building. It is not that I have a problem working with others, but it some of their attitudes that drive me nuts. I take my job seriously and try to do the best I can to be the best teacher I can be. Don't get me wrong, we all have our days (even me). However, others can bring you down quickly with their attitude. I typically stay to myself, but I have to watch how I respond to certain adults' statements and/or questions. This is my verse for this:
We are in the profession of teaching to make a difference in children's lives. However, we can even make a difference in adult's life. You never know what the adult you may be talking to is going through in life. It is important to keep this in mind. When speaking to another adult, it is important to remain calm and keep some of your comments to yourself. This is sometimes easier said than done.
Sometimes I am asked why I keep to myself while at school. Usually it is because I have so much to do and my mind is on trying to get things accomplished. However, sometimes I keep to myself so that I don't say something that offends another person or should not be said. I am open to talk to anyone, but I use my work time to benefit the children. I stay away from the teacher's lunch room not because I don't think it's a great place to get ideas or a place to feel supported, but because I use that time to get myself ready for the rest of the day and to have a quiet time with God. This has been a blessing in my life that I have needed, and I realize that others may not need this.
Next time you are quick to make a response to a colleague or jump into one's conversation, think if you have a gentle answer or a harsh word. We want our words to be gentle and more Christ like each and every day. Sometimes I have to tell someone that I will get back with them so that I can think how I am going to respond. It is so easy to stick your foot in your mouth before you know it. It's OK to take time to figure out your response. I truly believe God likes it when we do, because it gives us a chance to ask him for guidance.
I pray that you are able to get along with your colleagues this year and remember why we are in this profession. I pray that you are able to respond to others with gentle responses. I pray that you seek God's guidance in tough situations. I pray that you are not only a positive influence on your student's lives but also your colleagues.
I officially should receive the worse blogger award. I have been meaning to get on here and catch up, but I have been so extremely busy since school starts back. It seems like when school starts back everything starts back. Football season is in full swing, and so my afternoons are busy getting cheer stuff together and my Friday nights are spent watching football. My husband is busy harvesting the fields. :) So he has not been much help around the house. Yes, my husband helps out a lot at home to help me out so it makes a world of difference when he's not around. I love my life busy, but it takes some getting use to after being off from the summer.
As my life feels up with meetings, lessons, games, and so much more, I have to remember that I have to take time for myself and my family. My husband just told me the other night that I need to learn a two letter word "N-O". I have gotten better than I use to be, but I still have trouble telling people no. I don't want to let anyone down. This verse helps me remember the importance of what I commit to:
When I get asked to do something now, I typically say I will get back with you after I pray about it and talk to my husband. This gives me time to think and pray about it to see if it is God's Will. I truly believe that we can get into things that aren't God's Will by being to quick to give a response. When we do get in these things, we aren't able to be the best we can.
There are so many duties of a teacher, and we have to know our limits. There are some things that have to be established such as the student's learning, our professional development, etc. However, there are some things that aren't mandatory like cooking snacks for the class, decorating our classrooms to look cute, having our students do crafts, or coaching a sport. These are all great and all, but only if done for the right reason.
If we commit to something and can't give it 110%, then I don't think it was meant for us to do. The Lord will help us with things that he has planned for our lives, but first we have to ask for his direction and then seek his guidance in helping us accomplish it. This not only allows us to have a sense of peace, but it also helps us accomplish great things.
I pray that you are able to learn the "two-letter word, N-O". I pray that you seek God's will before agreeing to extra activities this year. I pray that you put Christ first in all your duties. I pray that when times get rough that you seek God's guidance, because He is the answer to all of our problems.