Thursday, February 26, 2009

Drama Queen Alert

I have had 12 hours of Drama Queenedness. Why do I have to be so emotional and completely overreact to every single crisis in my life? We had quite a setback last night with the set for the middle school play, and I seriously melted down. Maybe it was more of an inner meltdown than what I let on, but I'm lucky it didn't end in violence. I could have decked someone with no problem whatsoever. This morning I was still in a complete tizzy, and that's when tears started. I'm much better now, having accepted the inevitable, but it took a good 12 hours for me to feel like myself again. My emotions are such a roller coaster. I guess that comes with the territory of being a total Drama Queen.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Well, here I am, sitting at Parent/Teacher Conferences. It's been a pretty busy night. I've had 21 different conferences, and some of those are for students I have in more than one class. I don't enjoy sitting in a chair for 3 1/2 hours, but I don't actually mind conferences. It took me about 10 years of teaching to feel that way though. When I was younger, I always felt like, "What right do I have to tell parents about their kids?" Especially when I was 22 or 23, it felt ridiculous. Now, I feel like I have some authority. It's really only come with age though.

One thing that's hard about teaching TAG is that my classes mostly work on long-term kinds of projects. That means I never have many grades in the gradebook. This frustrates some parents (and some kids too) who are very grade driven and want to monitor grades online every single day. It also stinks for the kids who are terrible at time management. But... the long-term projects really let the kids do in-depth research. Most of the time in school, we have to cover a lot of topics quickly... the mile-wide/inch-deep way of thinking. In my class, the kids can go with an inch-wide/mile-deep way of researching. They can really become the experts on topics, and that's cool.

My 6th graders did a good job at Invent Iowa. We even have one invention going on to State, so that's exciting. My 7th graders are headed to History Day competition on March 17, so they're working hard on their projects. I'm going to have entries in performance, exhibit, and documentary. I'm glad they're trying all sorts of things. The theme this year is "The Individual in History." 8th graders are prepping for their Images of Greatness night. Their papers are written, and now they're working on timelines and bio-riddles. The bio-riddles will be memorized and presented at their big Images of Greatness event. They dress as the person they've chosen and try to have the audience guess who they are. They prepare a display board and also a food to share that has something to do with the person, where the person is from, or the time period when the person lived. The food is the most creative part of the project, and it's fun to see what they come up with.

I only have 15 minutes left at this point. Between conferences and blogging, the night has gone pretty quickly. I hope it goes as quickly when I get to do it all over again on Thursday night. The nice thing about the 2nd night of February conferences is that we get to have it our individual classrooms. That forces me to clean my classroom up a little, and I can also get some school things done that I normally couldn't get done during conferences. The only bad thing about my GOAL classroom though is that it's away from all the other teachers. I'm sort of in a little corner by myself. I miss the days when I taught with my friends Patti and Virginia, and we'd have the door between our classrooms open a little. We would chat during the down time, and that really made the night go quickly.

OK... I've rambled on enough for tonight. 10 minutes left. I can do it. I can do it. I can do it. :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Academy Awards

Here was one of my favorite moments from the Oscars last night...

If it's not funny to you, maybe you missed seeing the real thing on David Letterman. Weird!

But really, for me, the best thing about this year's Academy Awards was that it was more like watching the Tony's than anything! Hugh Jackman was great. Not only is he too yummy for words, but he sings and dances too! This whole production number about movie musicals was the icing on Hugh Jackman's cake. Mmm mmm!

Wait. I take it back. The BEST thing about the Oscars was watching them with Andrew instead of watching them by myself! Sigh.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Saturday Night Success

The first Saturday Night at the Sondheim was a hit.  The audience really seemed to love it, and we hope it's going to become a regular event, showcasing Fairfield's local talent.  It was so much fun to be on that stage again.  What a great space.
Andrew, Tom, and I singing "The Rain in Spain" from My Fair Lady

the finale

Andrew and me... Higgins and Eliza

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Saturday Night at the Sondheim

The first ever "Saturday Night at the Sondheim" will be presented Saturday, February 21st, beginning at 8:00 pm. The premier show for the monthly event at the Sondheim Center is called "Magical Musical Tour" and is a journey through some of the great genres of music including pop music, classical music, movie music, and Broadway musical standards. John Speer is hosting and performing, along with a star-studded cast including Werner Elmker, Lynwood King, LeAnne Edgeton, Andrew Edlin, Tena Nelson, Emily Roth, Phil Carter and Rob Steinberg.

Andrew Edlin and Tena Nelson will perform a musical excerpt from My Fair Lady, and Tena Nelson also will join with Tom Voorhees in performing a medley of famous songs from West Side Story, two great Broadway musicals which were turned into highly successful movies. Leanne Edgeton will provide the piano accompaniment for these performances.

Danish concert pianist Werner Elmker will play themes from several major motion pictures including Lord or the Rings, Chariots of First, Glory, and Amelie. He will also perform themes from Rachmaninoff's second piano concerto which have been used in many movies.

Emily Roth will sing My Heart Will Go On, the Oscar-winning song from Titanic. Rob Steinberg will perform two of the audience favorite pieces from his latest concert of classical music in the movies. Rob will perform Dances with the Blessed Spirits, with high school student Phil Carter accompanying on violin. Rob also will reprise his performance of perhaps the best known and most beloved classical music piece -- Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata

John Speer will sing a country western classic accompanied by guitarist Lynwood King and an inspirational classic for the event.

Tickets for Magical Musical Tour will be $15 for adults and $10 for students and seniors. Tickets for the concert can be obtained at the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center during work hours or by calling the box office at 472-ARTS (2787).

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Heading Out to Invent Iowa

I'm sitting at the computer, getting ready to head out with my 6th graders to their Invent Iowa competition in Burlington today. Nothing like an hour on a school bus in the morning to get a person going. :P I have no idea how they'll do or what the competition will be like in Burlington. I guess it will be a learning experience for all of us.

Play practice is going well. Randy is coming today and tomorrow to choreograph a number for me and help me clean up some of the other medleys. It will be nice to get someone else's thoughts, although Heather has been good to stop by and be another set of eyes for me too.

We have two rehearsals this week for Saturday Night at the Sondheim. And, here's a news flash... when you forget to take your dress to the dry cleaner and you have a boyfriend, they actually offer to take it for you the next day!!!! I was freaking out because I totally spaced running my dress to the cleaner's yesterday. I'm in rehearsal every evening until after 5:00, so there's no way I could get there. I was lamenting that fact at supper last night, and Andrew offered to take it for me today. I guess that's what boyfriends do... who knew? I'm feeling totally spoiled by that, let me tell you!

OK, I'm off to make sure everything is prepped for my sub... have a happy Tuesday, everyone!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Post V-Day Glee

Valentine's Day is a completely different beast when you have someone in your life.  Andrew and I started off yesterday rehearsing with Tom and LeAnne for "Saturday Night at the Sondheim" which will be on Sat., February 21.  We had a good time.  I think it's going to be a new and fun experience performing with Andrew on stage.  True, this is no huge thing, but I think it will be fun.  

Why do flowers look and feel so much better when you get them from a boyfriend???  I got a beautiful bouquet of mixed flowers, and it's STUNNING.  Vibrant and colorful.  That's all I'll say to the world about the gift exchange, except to say that things couldn't have been more perfect!

We didn't really have plans for the evening... we talked about several different options.  In the end, we went to Ottumwa to a really good Mexican restaurant that is both bright yellow and basically under a bridge.  Good food.  Then, we went to see Slumdog Millionaire.  This is pretty much the only Academy Award nominated movie within 45 minutes of Fairfield.  Frustrating.  The movie was good.  I didn't LOVE it, but I liked it a lot.  It will be interesting to see if it wins Best Picture.  

All in all, I'm just grateful this year.  What an interesting feeling to have on Valentine's Day.  Grateful and happy.  :)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Pre V-Day Glee

For the first time in so many years, Valentine's Day is not going to be the reminder of being alone. I'm really looking forward to Valentine's Day this year... I can't remember the last time I've said that!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Today's Random Thoughts and Questions

Tracy's Olivia, age 4: "I wish my nose was long enough so I could smell my own breath."

"Love Changes Everything" from Aspects of Love:  "Love can make the summer fly, or a night seem like a lifetime."  Currently, for me, time has no meaning.  

Why do Anne Geddes' photos look creepy to me now, when I used to really love them?

I got the funniest valentine from Tracy today.  It's not really appropriate to put on here, but I will tell you that the inside of the card said, "Have yourself a thoroughly satisfying Valentine's experience!"  I'll leave it at that and just keep you all wondering.  ;)

I am not managing my sleep well these days.  It's worth it, but I need to figure out a new plan.  Hmmm.

Will my 6th graders be ready for Invent Iowa?  The competition is next Tuesday, and I'm a little scared.  No level of nagging, begging, inspiring, or threatening is getting through to them at this point.  Blerg.

I predict I will survive the upcoming crazy month before the kids' show exclusively on kisses and Diet Mountain Dew.

I can't believe where I was a month ago.  I can't believe how things have changed.  I can't believe how full I feel inside and how amazing it all is.  I just can't believe it.  I'm a lucky, blessed girl.

Monday, February 9, 2009


I just found out today that for the next 5 Wednesdays, I'm going to have 7:00 a.m. meetings.  Wednesdays are our staff development days, which mean I'll be going from those 7:00 meetings to another set of meetings that will last until 9:30.  7:00 a.m.  Yes, you read that correctly.  If I think about it, I could seriously cry.  I don't know why morning people assume that the entire world is made up of morning people.  I can't help it.  I'm a night owl.  Even when I try to go to bed early, I'm rarely asleep before midnight.  Those irritating morning people calling me to 7:00 meetings would be like me calling them to 10:00 p.m. meetings.  That would work just fine for me!  If it were once a month, I'm sure I could psyche myself up for it, but once a week?!?!?!?!  I could seriously start bawling.  I normally don't even get up until 7:15 or 7:30.  This is crap.  Total crap.  

OK.  I've vented.  I've released it into the universe.  Now I can stop pouting and suck it up.  7:00 a.m. meetings for the next 5 weeks... Oh, Boy!  Evidently I'm done with the pouting, but not quite done with the sarcasm.  I guess I have a bit of time to finish my attitude adjustment.

Best Weekend Ever!!!

Saturday: Spent the day with Andrew at State Speech Contest in Pella, IA.  Saw as many acts as possible.  Felt good to support the kids.  Was SO FREAKING PROUD of them all... I don't think I could be prouder if I were actually their parent!  Ate sushi in Iowa City at Oyama... uh, YUM!!!  I think I could become addicted to that place!  It was a perfect day.

Sunday: Slept late.  Spent the day with Andrew, just hanging out, doing nothing special.  He made me pancakes for brunch (those of you who know me realize that I'm in Heaven after having sushi and pancakes within the same weekend).  Had a nap.  Restful, glorious.  Sigh.  Ate at George's for supper and watched Catch Me If You Can.  

I do not want this weekend to be over.  Mondays... grrrrrrrr!!!!!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Wretched Eternal Days

Observation for the Day:

When each day you're living for the few precious, perfect hours in the evenings, it makes the work days nearly unbearable, and it makes Fridays especially excruciating.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Gladys is My Hero

A friend of mine posted this on Facebook, and it made me laugh so hard, I had tears in my eyes. I was sitting here howling my guts out at the computer screen, startling the dog. Oh man, this is good. I want to be Gladys when I grow up, and I honestly mean that! Enjoy!

Monday, February 2, 2009


Hope is the Thing with Feathers
by Emily Dickinson

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chilliest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

I love this poem.  Even though I'm trying my best these days to focus on gratitude instead of hope, I'm nothing without hope.  Hope sometimes is the tiny candle flicker that gets me through dark times.  Hope can also be overwhelming certainty.  Today, hope is possibility, in all its fragile, innocent optimism.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...