Wednesday, February 29, 2012

...and Dear Jesus

...thank you for choosing the right parents for me.

Love that girl!

Oregon *sigh*

My latest Pinterest obsession is finding really cool pictures from Oregon. I really do believe it may be one of the most beautiful places on earth.

The Best Medicine

I came home feeling completely miserable. Nasty head cold and a fever. I knew this morning I shouldn't have gone to work, but report cards were due today, and there was really nothing I could do. So I left sub plans for tomorrow, called someone in, and left all my work at school feeling no guilt whatsoever.

Now I'm home and in my jammies. The electric blanket is turned up, and the remote controls are close at hand.

But these things aren't making me feel, the best medicine would be my Dayna. My sweet girl who made me a bread and butter sandwich and put a tea bag in a big mug (I had previously filled it with hot water) and brought everything in to me on a tray. I must say...I'm feeling better already.

(But I still think I'll stay home tomorrow.)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Queen of the Ice

Dayna's Daisy Girl Scout troop recently went ice skating. I'd say she had fun.

Even when she falls on her tuckus.

Teachable Moments

I'm so proud of Dayna. We had a Friday Night Frenzy last weekend. It's been awhile since we've done that. We decided to go to the mall and walk around. Dayna is not much of a fan of the mall, but she was game for the evening. We let her decide which stores we'd go into. Her plan was to spend the whole time at the play area. (Whoever invented those was a genius!) Well...she's 44" now, and the play area says for children 42" and under. What to do? To me, it's not a big deal if she goes in and plays. But I also don't want Dayna to get the message that rules aren't for her.

She stood outside the play area and made the decision for us. Her little lip started quivering, but she looked up at us and said she'd be okay. We went to the "lotion store" (Bath and Body Works) and smelled the candles. She got to spray herself with glitter spray (and me, too!) and get all glamored up. We decided to keep walking and stopped at Claire's. Santa seems to always know that a Claire's gift card is just up Dayna's alley.

While we were walking in, we noticed a girl about Dayna's age there to get her ears pierced. The family graciously let Dayna watch the process. Meanwhile, I noticed mall security circling the store. I didn't think much of it, when he walked away after about 5 minutes. I found the manager and asked a question about their starter package (just in case Dayna gets her ears pierced soon). As soon as the manager turned to talk to me, something caught her eye and she excused herself. Within about 3 steps, she apprehended a young teenager leaving the store. The girl was teary and shaking; she was led behind the counter and instructed to sit on her bottom. Minutes later, 2 more mall security officers showed up and escorted the girl to the back room. She kept saying, "I'm sorry. I'm sorry."

Well...this was quite a teachable moment for Dayna, who stood wide-eyed at the situation. When we ate dinner later, we were talking about what happened, and how some people shoplift to get a thrill. After all, what kind of money are you really going to make from Claire's? In our conversation, I asked Dayna what she would do if her daughter was ever caught stealing. Let me tell you...Dayna has some pretty creative consequences.

This led into another great conversation about 1 Cor. 10:13

No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

We talked about the difference between being sorry you did something and being sorry you were caught. When the girl saw the security guard the first time, God had given her an opportunity to find a way out. She didn't take it. Dayna was a pretty smart cookie and figured out that the girl was probably more sorry that she got caught.

As the evening wore down, Dayna discovered that window shopping could be fun after all. She even chose to let me go into a new store that looked interesting to me...even though we said Dayna could pick all the stores.

I'm so proud of my selfless, sweet girl. I'm also pretty excited that I might get myself a shopping buddy, yet!


The fog is lifting, and I slowly feel like I'm coming up to the surface.

It's getting a bit easier to breathe up here. I'm starting to enjoy my time at school with some of my classes, and behaviors are S-L-O-W-L-Y coming under control.

We had a program last week...most of the kids were very well behaved, and their voices were absolutely beautiful.

This is a picture I took as Kindergarten was preparing for the program. (I shamelessly admit to using the camera as a classroom management tool...they seem to shape up when the camera comes out.)

You's going to be okay.

Chinese New Year

We had a fun time celebrating the Year of the Dragon.
Dayna and her dragon buddy (Eli)

I think Dan has a soft spot for Noah
Love my girl!
Best buddies!
I really love these kids!
Our Chinese New Year tree. (Don't you have one?)

I got to share about CNY with Dayna's class.
We read a story, she sang a song, and we gave red envelopes to her classmates filled with chocolate coins.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

My Birthday Present

I saw the sweetest idea at a craft store in Oregon over Christmas. My dear mom bought me (almost) all the things I needed to make this fun craft.

You can find directions here. I opted to make the magnetic dates from large glass stones with the scrapbook paper/dates mod-podged onto the back before gluing on the magnets.

I love that the acrylic sheet on the front is dry-erase so I can change the month and write any important dates I need.
Thanks for the birthday gift, Mom! It was a lot of fun.

Lessons I'm Learning - Part Seven (Sing)

God's been teaching me this one for awhile. When I don't feel like it, I have to sing. I even made a tea mug to remind me. Out of the blue, a friend of mine sent me a necklace in December. She didn't really know why she was supposed to send it to me, but God must have known.

Then we sang a song in choir at church simply titled "Sing." (I confess I didn't really like the song at first...but it did grow on me.) One morning, in the midst of my anxiety and the unknown, I heard that same song on the radio when my alarm went off...I had never heard it on the radio before, but it must have been placed on that station at that time just for me...a reminder to sing.

So, while "Sing" has been the command God keeps giving...He has been whispering another word: "Hope." I was given a farewell gift of a stuffed pig from one of my students. I brought it home and was telling someone that she needed a name. I thought it would be appropriate to name the pig after the student who gave it to me. I was asked, "What was her name?" The answer: Hope. What a fitting name. Since then, God keeps whispering "Hope" in my ear...I don't know if that's hope for me, or hope that I should bring to my new situation (or maybe both!?!)

A few weeks ago, we sang a new song at church. It was catchy...I liked it...that was about it.

I'm no longer surprised that God speaks to me first thing in the morning through the song on my radio alarm...but I've moved past the point of listening for a little bit before hitting the snooze button. This week brought another major setback in my situation. The next day, in the 2.7 seconds it took me to hit the snooze button, I heard these words: "The peace that passes understanding is my song." Those words got stuck in my head all day. I remembered the melody to the rest of the song, but couldn't remember the words. I also figured that since I just recently heard the song at church, it would be a few more weeks before I'd hear it again.

I was wrong. That song was in this morning's worship service. Tears streamed down my face as I sang these words:

My hope is in You Lord, all the day long
I won't be shaken by drought or storm

A peace that passes understanding is my song

and I sing my hope is in You alone

I found two different YouTube videos when I came home. The first simply shows the lyrics.

The second comes with a tissue advisory:

Sometimes our trials don't have happy endings. I just pray that God is being glorified through mine.

Saturday, February 4, 2012