Tuesday, January 22, 2013

You're just saying that . . .

Look at the time. I jumped out of bed at 5:15a this morning like the bed was on fire and pounced on my couch at 5:15p this afternoon. Then I woke up at exactly the time I'm suppose to start preparing for bed. Just sad.

Not like this is the first thing I've failed at, but man it just seems like I can't win. Tomorrow I'm just not sitting down. I just keep telling myself, I'm in my 20's, this is the time period for goals crashing and burning. Speaking of my 20's I've noticed here lately comments people make towards me that fit no other previous time period in my life and hopefully none to come after.

 Just to provide a little laugh I thought I'd immortalize a few here for all to read. Enjoy!

" You only have cheese, wine and that nasty tea in your fridge. I'm not even counting these veggie patties."
- My father every time he visits. 

" Isn't that the guy you dated for a second? What did you do to mess that up."
- Friend on a recent trip

" Leave it up to you to know all the places to eat, but only one grocery store location in town."
- My mother.

" You just learn some table manners and fix your sinus issue. No one wants to listen to all that sniffling on a date."
- My mother. 

" Are you girls married?"
- A friends grandmother at our first meeting.

" I have someone who is perfect for you. I'll introduce you guys."
- Everyone I work with, at every job I have had in my 20's. 

And then just to end on a very good note, one of the best conversations I have ever had in my 20's:

Me: " I bought a bookcase to keep all my shoes on. Does that seem ridiculous?"
Friend: " Oh no, I do the same. I just don't like the idea of my shoes collecting dust on the closet floor."

Monday, January 21, 2013

Energizing: 1st Try, Bust

Like all things meant well   , I tried. Day 4 of trying was my downfall though.
I planned to start simple: Make sure I go to sleep in my bed AND no matter what workout for 30 minutes.
Then I crashed watching New Girl on the couch at 9:30p with no workout accomplished or cleaning for that matter.
So now I have a stronger plan. Not just some miniature goals, but a set in stone plan.
Starting at 8p ( probably more like 10p on game nights) I will begin my before bed routine. No matter what I have planned, my goal is to be home at a time that allows me to be in bed by 10:30p.

1.) 30 bod sculpting workout (even if I went to the gym earlier).
2.) Pack Clothes and lunch for the next day.
3.) Complete skin care regime
4.) Shower
5.) In bed reading.

Lights out  at 10p.

I realize this is pretty strict and it may be hard to stick, but I have to do this at least two weeks. My body needs the routine in order to wake up early, have energy and stick to the 30 Day Workout Plan.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Happiness Project: Energize My January

      One of the most exciting parts of participating in The Happiness Project is the fact that I will complete something. Except for my job, I rarely complete anything outside of conversations with others. I love to start a project, but always start another before I complete the first. Since this project builds every month, I'm excited that at the beginning of January 2014, I will be able to confidently state, "Welp that's done" and be the better for the whole experience.

Now for my January Goal and the steps I plan to take to reach that goal:

Get Energized!

Go to sleep earlier.
    I usually go to bed around, 1a and I wake up no later than 5:45a depending on what I have to do for the day. During my planning period I fight not to lay my head down on my desk for a quick, but highly inappropriate power nap.
    Not to mention if I make it to my bed to follow asleep like a normal person instead of crashing on my couch, it's a miracle. I'd like to spend more nights and longer time in my comfortable bed. I love that bed and I'm it's only real friend, hopefully by the end of the month we're reacquainted with each other on much better level.

Exercise more and better when I do.
    I just started the 30 days of working out for 30 minutes. I figure nothing like the joy of no longer having to go everyday to jump start me into going at least 4 times a week. Honestly, with the exception of game nights and Sunday with all it's action, I have no excuses why I do not go to the gym every other day of the week.
I know how to workout, so for now I'm sticking to my bicycle and elliptical machines that worked for me, alternating arms and legs, and then on Thursdays I will attend an excellent Pilate's class offered at my school. The key for the 30 days will be to mix it up, then after that I can get into the routine of classes.

Eat healthier.
    The only thing in my fridge is cheese. The only thing in my pantry is black beans, cereal and soup. I'm missing out on the majority of the food groups and you can tell in my energy level. Also, my complexion.
To jump start I'm beginning with the GM's Cleanse, which focus's on fruits, veggies and water. Everyone I've talked to who's completed the cleanse swears by how much energy you gain.
    When I complete the cleanse, I plan on going with Weight Watchers (or one of those eating groups) lifestyle plan, just tweaked to fit myself. Four days of eating on a calorie counter, with one day being dedicated to  fruits and another being dedicated to veggies. Three days of eating smart, but fun, no Waffles House yet definitely some Chik-fil-a! I'm excited to see how much, energy I gain overall since my water will definitely be mixed with some of my favorite teas.
Tackle a nagging task.
    Decorating! As a child who moved often with a mother who did not believe in decorating because we'd just be moving again in a few years, I have a valid excuse. I just need to stop using this excuse and put some effort into my place.
    I've started a few projects here and there, but as I've stated nothing is finished. Since I'm broke at this time, my goal is to complete the task that I can with the things that I can. Complete my desk area organization and note board. Find a place for everything that deserves a place and trash the rest. Move my furniture in my bedroom so that I can finally set-up the new television I received for Christmas. Get the bathroom uncluttered and with a system- even if it is one I have to explain to guest. Finally, put some items on the walls,  that's the hardest thing for me since I hate hammering and measuring nails. Everything will have a slight tilt.
Use my time wisely
    I like to talk, their are very few people I can't hold a conversation with and unfortunately this does not work well for me during planning period. There's also the fact that I can easily veg-out on the couch and convince myself that I'll just plan before school or during planning. The previously mentioned time-management issues combined make for plenty of rushing and late nights.
    Just like I take the time out to pick out all my outfits for the week on Sunday, I can do the same for my classroom. I've found a Lesson Plan Agenda that fits my style better and can easily move from week to week. Also, I'm arranging things on my desk so multi-tasking can take place. Finally, I'm just going to learn how to discipline myself to do better. This may be the hardest one since I rarely limit myself on anything, but I just have to remind myself that reaching this goal will help me reach many of the others I have set and will set in the future.

     I realize I stole some of these straight from the author Gretchen Rubin, but I think we can all agree that everyone could use a little more energy. As Americans especially, we have a habit of working from the time we wake up until the time we go to sleep, and some of us often find ourselves dreaming about work. So Energy it is and Energy it will be!
Feel free to join in an set your own goals, just stop by The Happiness Project website for tips and my Getting Started Post for an example of where to begin.

The Happiness Project: Getting Started

Yep, I'm joining a fan club not related to the Spurs or Cowboys. I cannot help myself, this was suggested in my all educators book club where not a single person even read the first book suggested. Being as I'm not a resolutions person (seriously I know what needs to be fixed no need to wait until January 1st) and I consider myself pretty happy overall, I was a bit skeptical. Then I started scanning the book and the phrase about changing for the better jumped out and persuaded me to "just do it". 
One of the best things I like about the book is the fact that she approaches from an experimental and well thought out process. There is no vagueness or spontaneity involved. Goals, direct goals, are set and ways to reach those goals are determined  The author read, discussed, read some more and researched science in order to develop a 12-step program that would work for her AND others. 
So without further ado, my Getting Started in the Happiness Project. Which will quickly be followed by my January Goal . . . 
Getting started involves deciding my 12 commandments or the principles on which my goals are decided. 
1.) Be Me.
2.) Be Honest.
3.) Be a risk taker.
4.) Be the one asking questions.
5.) Be loving towards others.
6.) Be grateful.
7.) Be a traveler.
8.) Be helpful.
9.) Be a person who laughs often.
10.) Be able to allow weakness in yourself and others.
11.) Be a leader.
12.) Be faithful.

The second part of Getting Started involves a list of Secrets of Adulthood. Being as I've already gone into great detail about the Five Things I've learned in the past 25 years of Life AND the fact that I'm only 24 with no relationship longer than 3 months and definitely no children, my list will be shorter. 

1.) If you cannot afford it, then don't buy it.
2.) Sleep well before getting in the car to drive anywhere further than 45 minutes away.
3.) Alkzelers Plus will put you to sleep quicker than Nyquil.
4.) Don't lie, it's too hard to keep your story straight.
5.) Don't text call.
6.) Your parents do not spend the majority of their extra time talking about you.
7.) In your 20s if you leave your parents house at the end of a visit with items you didn't arrive with it is not stealing.
8.) Learn to shop with people who shop like you.
9.) Sit down dinners with old friends are the bees knees.
10.) No diet last.
11.) Make friends with the person behind the counter.
12.) Just pray.
13.) Call home as often as possible, they need the reassurance that you're still alive as much as you need the reassurance that someone does care.

Now on to my January Goals, feel free to check out the website, The Happiness Project and get started yourself!
The Happiness Project

Monday, January 7, 2013

Showed Up Physically, Not Mentally

First, understand I'm writing this post on my smart phone- remember when the best part of a cell was the snake game. If this post comes out like I want, I may be posting from the cellular more often. That means more direct post from my classroom!

 Yesterday I drank coffee and tea like it was water and sure enough when I finally dozed of it was in the four o'clock hour. So needless to see I was not all there. I could not even remember where I left my school keys before break. I wanted to panic, but my mind was on lesson plan mode and refused to  budge. After tearing up my house this afternoon I found them hanging on the coat rack, buried under purses. Obviously, I was in no mood to deal when I came home on the last day in December.
The entire day all I could think about is dinner tonight with a friend who got engaged over the holidays (how many people said that phrase today). We're were headed to a brewery for coffee AND beer, but like many of the locally owned places in town Monday's are a day of rest. With the boom of brunch I completely understand and find no fault in the decision. Instead we headed to one of my favorite places, even if it does hurt a little to pay the bill. Even if you don't like the food, as one friend confessed, the atmosphere and the kind yet knowledge staff make the place welcoming.

It's firestone pizza at it's best and they make everything at an open kitchen. The drinks are to die for and even though the ingredients are at the level of a true foodie (I always have to Google a topping) the waiter has no problem fully explaining.

Conversation was great, we're all educators so naturally we have to talk shop before moving on to the personal. Possibly one of my favorite "how he proposed" stories ever. Simple, basic, but so befitting of the couple. We spent the rest of the meal discussing everything wedding and I'm beyond excited for the two lovebirds. It was a wonderful way to spend the eve of my return to school.

The Cheese Salad, added Apple Smoked Bacon and bread. Damn good.
The place is Fireside Pies off of West 7th in the DFW area, check it out if you're ever in the neighborhood. You will not be disappointed.

Open bar, they make your meal behind this and of course your drink. 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Maybe I've Learned a Few Things

It is 2013, I'll be 25 as of this year- that is a fourth of a century. AND according to one of my oldest friends, all that time of hard lessons is starting to pay off. Now after two days filled in a car with great conversation, I can agree on some levels. Key word SOME, I still have a long ways to go. 
See this weekend I drove down for the first birthday of an old friends son, and spent the quick road trip discussing everything with another old friend. While visiting I took the time to have a great  best friend hang day with an old friend (honestly no better way to spend the last day of Christmas vacation). The entire weekend had a trend, Old Friends. As in people who have known me long enough to make sound judgements in the development of my life. Despite the fact that I ran around today looking like a soccer mom let out of the house on a girls day, anyone who knows me personally can tell you that I'm far from that level of responsibility for some time; however, after further review there are a few things I can agree with completely. 
1.) My money is no longer funny. The only true goal I had for 2012 was to have something in the savings account at the beginning of 2013. I can proudly say, I accomplished this goal. Bank of America has a rule, if you overdraft less than $20.00 they will not charge you. Fact. I put this rule to the test numerous time throughout college, at one point I overdrafted $19.96. Just ridiculous. 
2.) When the clock strikes 12, I turn into a pumpkin. As one Old Friend pointed out, there was once a night out that we returned home around 1:00a and I promptly changed outfits and left to join a different group of friends out on the town. I was not seen again for two days. Just joking, I did pop in to change shoes once.This was not a rare occurrence for me at all. Now, I'm the one after 10p checking my watch constantly with a yawn and announcing the first goodbye in a group of people. I have responsibilities now (student loans) and they require that I function at a high level. I need my rest for that. 
Exactly how I'm looking at all "Frog Princes" from now on!
3.) No more kissing frogs, ever again. Ever! I'm an extremely private person when it comes to my relationships (the irony of my writing that statement on my blog), but if there is one thing that anyone who knew me in college could say with complete faith is that I always dated jerks, turds and the guys that make fathers refuse to answer the door. Truth be told, I had no intentions of ever developing a serious relationship with any of those fellows and there are no hurt feelings on my part, but my nerves deserved better. I wasn't allowed to date until I was 16 and the fact that my father coached all the guys I was interested in aided in the enforcement of this rule. Then my first dating experience junior year was not impressive and  when I left for college I was nursing a pretty scorched heart from playing with fire (they tell you not to fall for a friend, but what do they know), so I started college with the goal to just learn how to date and have fun. I grew up with boys, but treating you like a little sister and dating you are two very different things (the two combined are actually against the law) and I learned that pretty quickly. I learned a whole heep of things. The biggest thing I learned (outside of the fact that liquid courage rarely ends well) is that I need maturity. I need someone who is setting goals and reaching them, who knows who they are, who can laugh at themselves and who can have a quarrel without turning it into a competition ( <--- here's looking at you " Mr. I believe where the problem occurs is where the problem should be discussed"). Like I prefer my cheese to be, I need my husband to be . . . aged.
I sing this song to my students ALL the time. They are not amused.
4.) Know what keeps me going in life. My faith, my family, my friends and my work. I pray more times in a day than I ever knew you could pray. And every day, I'm thankful for the answers and guidance of my prayers. I don't take off if I'm sick (actually I head straight to school and share), but for my family I'd take a day with no pay- they are my backbone and for that I am thankful. I've stopped thinking I need to be friends with everyone and started focusing on the relationships that matter most. This means I've reconnected with some old friends and distanced myself from others, but the joy and peace I have in the relationships I have now are what keeps me going sometimes. Learning, laughing, teaching and growing with my students is Life- enough said.
5.) Giving my reflection time. I'm a planner, I'm a take charge doer and I'm constantly itching to move more. At least three times a day I come up with an idea to do this or that and not to brag, but they are usually pretty great. Or I meet someone with a great adventure to share. Or I'm given the opportunity to go on my own great adventure. The thing is I've had to learn to be patient, to pray and to be patient. I always feel like I'm going to bubble over with urgency, there are epic stories explaining just how much patience I lack and sometimes when I meditate it takes me forever to just clear my mind and focus. It has taken me a long time to learn to balance the thin line between sitting back and waiting and preparing towards the goal, but time has shown me that the difference between the two changes everything. Honestly, "be patient" is a mantra I remind myself of daily. 
For much of my youth I was convinced that if only I had a raccoon as a pet I would  be just like Pocahontas.
So, five solid lessons from 25 years. Pretty good, I'm already looking forward to 30 years worth of lessons. No worries though, I'll be patient and enjoy the moments. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

What the Kids Say: Not Playing Favorites, But . . .

I love all of my students, each and everyone, but truth be told there are only a few I would love to sit down for coffee with in twenty years from now and catch-up. Then there are the ones who I honest to goodness look forward to everyday, they may not be the best, but in their own way they make my day. 

One of these students reminds me of the character Dash from the movie The Incredibles, he's quick-witted and honest as a 90 year old southern woman. Most of the time he's saying what I'm thinking. Please know I do correct him when his comments get out of line, and he always responds with, "I'm sorry Miss, I'm just sayin', not being mean."

Me: "Why are you in ISS"
Dash: "She wouldn't let me go to the bathroom, so I just left."
Me: "What! I don't let you go to the bathroom, you better not walk out of my class."
Dash: " Never, you're crazy!"

Female Student: "What is a verb again?"
Dash: " No, you just want attention and I'm trying to learn. Shut your mouth!"

Dash: " Miss I need help on this?"
Me: " What is your question?"
Dash: " I can do it."
Me : "Are you sure you don't need me help?"
* I walk away*
Dash: " Miss, quick question?"
Me: " Yes?"
Dash: "Nevermind."
* I walk away*
Dash: " Actually, can you show-
Me: " I need you to make up your mind"
Dash: " Honestly, I just wanted to see you walk."

Walking around the classroom showing off his poem about killing a deer on a hunting trip:
Female Student: " Can I see?"
Dash: "Nope."
Female Student: "What's it about?"
Dash: " You."

A random supplies and dress code check before students enter my classroom:
Dash: " I tucked in my shirt, I have a pencil, I have my AR book AND my red book. Woman  you gone let me into this classroom!"

As group leader picking other students to be in the group:
Me: " You have all boys, you need a girl to motivate you guys."
Dash: " Can't they all love me so much, I don't want to cause a catfight."