Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Just a good day. . .

So I got hired at my school back in October. I was originally at a different school in the first grade, numbers at the school fell, and the principal there talked me up to the principal at this school, and wa la. . . I got a new job. At the time, the vice principal was on maternity leave. I heard horror stories about this woman though. People said that she is so picky in everything that you do, and makes the job just a lot more stressful. Im not gonna get into details, but it made me nervous to meet her. . . I mean- REALLY nervous. She is over the second grade at the school meaning she is in charge of my observations. Well- she came back after Christmas break and showed up in my classroom unannounced for forty five minutes- just sitting there, taking notes. She found me at lunch and told me that she wanted to talk after school. So I nervously waited to go see her after school and the time inevitably came.

Who would've guessed that the woman would love me though? She told me I was doing a great job. She was impressed with my lesson and control of the class etc etc and even asked if I wouldn't mind having some of the newer teachers coming in and observing me teach? It was crazy. . . but good crazy. It was like this whole weight was lifted off of me. Since then, things have been so much more relaxed for me, switching districts was quite the change on me and I often have felt that I have started over, that it's my first year all over again.

I love what I do, and I feel I am good at what I do. I heard such bad stories about this woman, I had eventually decided that it was a certainty that she wouldn't like me and I would just have to deal with that. It made me unhappy though because I put so much into what I do. I arrive to work an hour early and stay several hours late. . . it just felt that it would seriously bring me down knowing that someone did not respect all the time I put into this job.

Anywho. that was last week. Today I was in class once again and here she comes plopping herself down into my classroom to observe once again. I tried to go on in a typical way, but anyone who is a teacher can understand the uncomfortableness of having someone over you sitting there watching your every move. Kids are random, and kids can be boogers, and often they choose to show those sides of themselves when other people are unfortunately sitting in. But my class of little boogers were great today, and upon her leaving she left a sticky note on my desk saying:

"I love to see you actively teaching during my observations! Glad you're @ Givens!!"

And small, silly little notes like that. . . truly make my day!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Speeding Ticket. . . Round 2

Usually when I am speeding around town in my little car, I am well aware that I am doing it, yet I do it anyway. Last night was a different story however. I was out and about shopping, not really sure where I was at, or where I was going when all of a sudden, there are those dang lights behind me!
Was I speeding? I have no idea what the speed limit is nor do I have any idea how fast I was even going. Maybe I ran a stop sign, considering it was dark and I really didn't know where I was at (I had my little Thomas Brothers Guide sitting on my next seat at the time). The conversation with the police officer was a bit silly, so I will replay it the best I can:

Police Officer: You were going 49 in a 35 speed zone (not THAT horrible) License, registration, and insurance.

Shawna: searches like crazy for them- hands them over (maybe I should start keeping them in a more convenient location if this is going to be typical?)

P.O. What's your current address and how long have you been there? Writes it, takes em, walks away

P.O. (upon returning) Why don't you have a Nevada License yet??

S. Haven't gotten around to getting it yet sir.

P.O. Have you been drinking tonight?

S. No

P.O. No??

S. Nope

P.O. No alcohol?

S. No sir

P.O. Where are you coming from?

S. Just doing some shopping

P.O. I said WHERE are you coming from???

S. (I had been driving around lost for a while, I couldn't even remember...) Green Valley Shopping Center?? (That is definitely not the name for it)

P.O. Walks back to his bike

P.O. (Upon returning) I am citing you for three things, out of state registration, out of state license because this state is so stupid and we can ticket you if you don't have these things just 30 days after moving here, and speeding.

(Ok he really didn't say that middle part, those are just my beliefs)

P.O. Where are you looking for? (I think he just noticed my map)

S. I don't really know. . .

P.O. What are you doing here?

S. Uhhhhh???

P.O. I mean here in Las Vegas

S. Oh. . . teaching

P.O. What grade?

S. 2nd sir

P.O. ::sigh:: You are killing me

S. You asked

P.O. ::another sigh:: Rip up your ticket, I will not write you up for speeding, just the registration and license which you need to take care of. Once you do that, appear in court on your assigned day and the judge should just take it off with just a small court fine.

S. Thank you (YAHOO! Is what I felt!)

P.O Do you know what this speeding ticket would have cost you?

S. Nope

P.O. About $300 (eeek!)

S. Thank you.

P.O. PLEASE stop speeding

S. I will :)


I am a bit annoyed with myself because the last one (like two months ago) I had to appear at the courthouse as well because I didn't have proof on insurance on me. With that experience, I swore I would never do that again. So this time I had everything I needed, but no luck still. Now I have to find time to go to the crazy DMV and get all that stuff taken care of.

Why I really haven't gotten it done? I registered my car in June, when I moved in August I felt it very unfair to have to pay all that money again. . . so I was hoping to just go without. And the license. . .still CA with my picture from when I was 16 on it. Bout time I got a new one. . . but once again. .. not up til 2011, why would I go do that? DMV is at least open on Saturdays (beastly) but my court date is for a Friday the 13th in February, what can be worse than that??

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A time for change

So the other day, on New Year's Eve actually, Molly was telling me how she hates waking up on New Year's Day to the parade. "In fact", she said, "I think New Year's is my least favorite holiday!" At the time, I am not really sure if I agreed with her or disagreed, or maybe I was just a mute, but as I later thought about it, New Year's is definitely not my least favorite holiday. It's not my favorite by far, but I like it. I like feeling like I get a chance to start over in a few ways, I get the chance to make myself better. I used to have a friend that told me he thought new year's resolutions were stupid and never made any because you should be changing yourself when you realize you need the change, not wait for a specific day to do it. . .blah. . . blah. . . blah. I mean. . . I see his point, yet I still disagree. I think New Year's Day is a good "starting over" day to kind of recommit yourself to doing things differently (even if in reality they rarely ever stick).

So today, I was teaching my class about New Year's (I know, we prob should have done it yesterday on our first day back, but there was just too much to do!) Anyway. . . it was a pretty amusing conversation so I am going to tell you about it. Nobody in my class realized why we actually stay up until midnight to celebrate. They thought you stay up til midnight just so you can see the fireworks and watch the big ball drop. "But why do they do it at midnight? Why don't they do all that stuff at 8 o'clock so we don't have to stay up so late? Why in the world does this random holiday take place in the middle of the night?" I questioned them. And then I pointed to a calendar and showed them which day they actually all stayed up late on, it wasn't even New Year's Day, it was the day before!
Midnight starting the new day is a harder concept for them to understand so a lot of them don't. We talked about how they will go to bed tonight and it is Tuesday, and when they wake up tomorrow it is Wednesday. . . when did it actually become Wednesday?? Most of the class thought 7 oclock. . . I am guessing that's when they wake up?? So we went over the fact that at midnight that's when the new day starts even though it is still the "middle of the night." (Golly, who made up our weird clock schedule anyway? 7 seems like a much more reasonable start time!) It was fun to watch them actually understand the meaning behind it. . . they are so silly!

So we go over New Year's Resolutions and why we make them. . . etc., etc, and then of course they start asking me what my new year's resolutions are. I do have a list of resolutions I have made, I mean, I can't be the only one that had a church lesson on new year's resolutions just two days ago! But how do you tell a bunch of 7 year olds that only know you as their teacher and not a normal everyday 25 year old, that my new year's resolution consists of being on the "Jerry Subway Diet" as well as not eating sugar for the next 23 days because I am going on a big trip at the end of the month and I do not consider myself bathing suit worthy yet? Or that I tend to spend lots more money then I technically have so I am trying to fix those kinds of mistakes as well?

My 2008 took some very unexpected turns that were obviously "unexpected." Life is not going nearly how I thought it would be and there has been a lot of change as well as a lot of regrets. I guess I am tired of being disappointed with things that happened, I am tired of thinking what could've, would've, or should've happened and one of my biggest resolves this year is to stop living in the past in a way. I got one of those texts that you are supposed to forward that said,

"There comes a point in your life when you realize: Who matters, who never did, who won't anymore, and who always will, so don't worry about people from the past, there is a reason they didn't make it to your future. So send this to everyone you want to remain in your life throughout 2009."

(Sorry, none of you got this from me because I am not a text forwarder. . . ) I know it's a cheesy little thing, but it made me realize that there is a reason certain people have not made it to my future, and I know that it is probably for a good reason and it's time to move on from that.

Just because things have changed, does not mean I am not happy with the changes. I have adjusted, I am experiencing new things, and I have been enjoying this new little life I have been leading. So don't you worry about that!

Anyway--one thing I have heard about new year's resolutions is they stick best when you tell someone else about them. I surely couldn't tell a class of 17 kiddos all that stuff, so instead, I posted it here. . .

"So what did you tell those curious kids what your 2009 resolutions are?" you ask.

I am going to eat more vegetables. (Haha. . . I was on the spot!!!)

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Winter break comes to an end. . .

After a lengthy drive last night (an accident caused an hour and a half delay--yuck!), I am back in Vegas. I figured I best finish up my synopsis of my trip back home.
Two days after Christmas, one of my best friends, Jenae got married. Molly was asked to do her flowers, so for a few days, I was a little elf doing whatever Molly wanted of me. I mostly put flowers together to form a bouquet which Molly would fix up later, or design a centerpiece with the basic necessities and Molly once again would work on it to make it actually look presentable. Bonnie and Mom both did their parts as well. Molly is amazing at it though, and the flowers turned out SO pretty. The whole wedding reception was beautiful and Jenae was beautiful as well. The only picture I got of her was on my phone and I can't figure out how to make it not sideways. . . so I am not gonna post it. . . sorry!!

Then a few days later was New Year's Eve!! Me, Molly, and Bonnie took her two kids, plus my nephew James, and Aub's friend Jamie to Legoland for the big New Year's Eve party. We were only there a few hours, but with four crazy little kids and A LOT of people, a couple of hours was plenty of time. They celebrated the new year with music and fireworks and the dropping of the giant lego brick (which we actually never saw) all at 6 pm. Though it was very early, it really felt like midnight! We were blowing horns and yelling and screaming and playing with glow swords, it was some fun times. Below are just a few pictures from there.

Though we were somewhat tired and cranky after our adventures to Legoland, we continued the night by going to Islands to eat dinner. It was a long wait, so we got into a pretty exciting game of "Eye Spy" and even got other families to join with us. The food was yummy though and seemed to decrankify us for the most part.

We finished off the night by going home and going in the spa, then playing wii til midnight. We broke into some apple cider and wore our "traditional" straw new year's hats. We sprayed some silly string outside and made some noise. It was quite the adventurous night!

I love the beginning of the new year. I love making changes and "starting over" with certain things in my life. I have one new year's resolution that I am a little delayed in starting, but I can't wait to share with all of you once it is up and going. :) I hope that everyone had great holidays, that you had a great 2008, but will have an even better 2009!