Friday, November 30, 2012

Moments, not things.

In this crazy time of the year where things are the forefront of minds, here is my desire.
I saw this picture on facebook, so who knows where the credit goes. But I love it. Maybe because I love Paris, but I love this mindset.

Just thought I'd share.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Kylie's first bike

We bought Kylie her first bike today. Yes, I know we are 1 month from Christmas, but really, in my opinion, the best kind of presents are the unexpected ones. Based on Kylie's reaction, I think she agrees with me!
It took her about 12 seconds to figure out how to pedal and she was off. Adorable in every way as well. She was soo excited to have a big girl bike.

After she had a few mintues to work on pedalling we loaded up the bikes and headed to the trail. It's amazing, it is November 25th and we wore shorts and tshirts. That's even a little warm for Texas.


After the ride, which was about a mile and a half, we packed up and hit the DQ for ice cream! Not surprising, Kylie went to bed early tonight!
I can't believe how fast my girls are growing up. It seems like bike riding is one of those milestones that mark the end of babyhood. Granted Kylie has training wheels, but it just seems that being able to pedal and stay on the bike is something that a "big girl" would do and not my baby.  Oh how precious these moments are.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

2nd place finish!

I ran my second 5k today as a "runner."
I even got a medal!
And not one of those, everyone gets a medals kinda medal!!

There were 15 timed finishers in my age group and I finished 2nd!!

There were 123 timed finishers in the race and my overall finish place was 26. 

My time for the 5k was 29:09.7 which put me at a 9:24 pace per mile.

The only other 5k time I have was from October when I ran it in 29:40. I was hoping to be faster today and my crazy goal that I didn't think I had any hope of making was 29 minutes. Man, if I had had any idea that I was that close, I would have run just a little faster! But beating my previous time by 30 seconds isn't bad.. I'll take that personal record improvement anytime!

Getting a medal today was a milestone in my life that I would have truly never believed possible. I have never been the athletic one. I've never won anything physical. In fact, I've never been even remotely good at anything sporty. So to be a decent runner now at 38 is truly a gift. So exciting at this point in my life. I'm not delusional, I know I'm not fast. Nor do I have any hope to be fast, but given the fact that in May of this year I couldn't do a quarter of a mile and here I am with a respectable time, I am very proud of myself.

Even better, the fact that my husband is running now too! Yes, we have become those crazy people! Here we are before and after the race. Doug finished a full minute faster than his last race too!

Aren't we cute :)  We are currently in training for the Cowtown races. Doug is going to do the 10k and I'm doing the half marathon. NUTS.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving is for family

Thanksgiving 2012

Thanksgiving day was lots of fun.  We had a great day filled with family and food. Almost every year that I can remember we have had Thanksgiving at my parent's house complete with 35 or more people. This year was a little different. It was a smaller crowd with a little nostalgia built in knowing that this was the last Thanksgiving in this house with my parent's as owners. In fact, come Christmas, we will be the owners. Strange times.

Anyway.. I woke up Thanksgiving morning thinking of my dad's dad. I do every Thanksgiving as he died on Thanksgiving day 24 years ago. (Thanks sis for doing the math.) I remember that day so vividly, maybe because I had the stomach bug... but I thought of him and then my mom's dad who just died and how different this year would be without him sitting at the head of the table.

As we gathered to eat, it felt a little strange, just having the immediate family, but good too. We all were able to sit in seeing distance of each other. We all agreed that the food may have been the best yet. (I ate too much..eek.)

After lunch we just enjoyed being with each other and then we took a big family picture (as tradition requires..)

And I went with my older sister and her fam and took some family pictures. Here is one sneak peak!

And, my youngest sister's growing belly need documented as well.
More pictures were taken and lots more eating and then my mom and two of my sisters and I went shopping at Walmart. It was crazy insanity there. But fun as we got some deals that we were not counting on!

Black Friday was for chilling and high school football playoffs. (Go Jackets!!) Tomorrow Doug and I are running a race and then having another family Thanksgiving for his side.

I love the holidays!!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Why I love Art Teacher Conference....

I just got back from art teacher conference.
I love it!!
Here are some reasons why.
  1. When you check in and get your registration bag this is what you start with... a nice little welcome to conference bag.
  3. When you leave conference, this is what your bag looks like...
    You are overloaded with stuff. GOOD STUFF!!! Stuff to use in your classroom, samples and lesson plans.
  5. What do you gain? Knowledge. Energy. Excitement. This is the one time during the year when I feel like my time is considered valuable and that what I teach is important. At conference, we meet other art teachers, go to workshops and LEARN new things!!
  7. Some of the workshops highlights for me....
        carving in drywall
        etching in plexiglass
        painting with india ink
        playing with melted beeswax.
    Yeah, just a typical work conference. :)
And one of the most important parts of this conference for me is the validation that I get that I'm on track, that I'm not shortchanging my students, and that things are in fact going well. Coming from a non-traditional art background, I often second guess how I am teaching things and worry that my students aren't getting what they need.

But going to workshops and seeing other teachers in action, good teachers, I see that I'm doing okay. In fact, I need to chill. One of the workshops I went to had us using techniques that I've used in scrapbooking and crafting, but I hadn't done it with my art students cause I didn't want people to think I was being to "crafty"... the vast majority of the teachers there didn't know what to do and I ended up helping out the presenters... the traditional art teachers... so yeah me!

I'm so doing this lesson with my students and I am going to work hard to allow myself to just be me. Teach what I want, craft what I want and let it go!!
And there you have it. Why I love Art Teacher Conference. Oh. even better, this year we had an APP to use with our smart phones! It was super cool.
oh yeah, one more thing. I presented too. I didn't just take, I gave too.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

SHS Fall Art Show

I had my fall art show this weekend. A few years ago I tied this event to our big fall formal  and it works really well. The theatre does a play and awards are given during intermission for the class representatives and various popularity contests. It's a time honored tradition at the high school and believe me, the award of "Best Eyes" really is quite a big deal.

For art students, having the show when all of their peers will be coming through gives them a chance to shine. Typically the art students are not the students that stand out and get lots of attention.

Here is the foyer in front of the auditorium. Our packing tape sculptures were on display and everyone LOVED them!!

Kylie wanted to take a picture of me.... Heck, at least I'm in a picture!
Next week I go to art teacher convention. I'm excited.. I love learning new things. I'm also a presenting Art SMART(s). It's about using technology in your art classroom.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Proper Running Form

I just read an article that makes a lot of sense on how to run. Go read it at
In the article they talk about proper form and why you should run with
the mid-foot hitting the ground first. WHAT??
Wow. I guess I better go relearn how to walk.

Sure wish this secret could have been given to me in 8th grade track
when I was suppossed to be learning about running.
Oh wait. I wasn't fast enough to warrant the coach remembering my name!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

District Band, House Showings and Running

District Band

So Maddie made the District Honor Band last Saturday. It was the first truly older kid thing she has done. Doug said when he dropped her off he got a little teary eyed. It was the start of a new chapter in our lives. The chapter that I truly LOVED growing up. Extracurricular activities on Saturdays! I competed in so many events in junior high and high school. 

Given that Maddie didn't pick up a clarinet until June, it was scary that she was trying out at all. But we were supportive. 103 clarinet players from 7th and 8th grade (most whom played in 6th grade as well) were vying for 48 spots. Maddie placed 43!!!! So proud.

So this Saturday, we will go drop her off early in the morning again and she will travel to do a band workshop all day and then we will go watch the concert.

It makes me cringe when I think of how fast these years are going to fly by. Truly, it seems like just yesterday we were starting pre-k. Yes, I will be one of those melancholy mothers.

House Showings

How does 3 times in 24 hours sound? Awesome! Not sure if any of the lookers are serious or will be interested, but I love the traffic!! And, our realtor uses a company that will text to schedule and confirm showings, it is awesome.


And last, running. I really try to not talk about this new love of mine. But, in case you were wondering... yes, I'm still running. I've even started reading books about running. On days I don't run I think about running. Who am I????   I'm not really sure, but I love the way I feel and look, so I think she's a keeper.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Grandmother's 97th birthday

On Saturday we celebrated my Grandmother's 97th birthday.

This one was a hard one.

It was the first one we celebrated with her not living independently.
 Last April she fell and has been in an nursing home since. It's just not the same.

Then my Grandad died 6 weeks ago.

So this year, Grandmother's birthday, where we have in the past had large parties,
was a small afternoon affair in the nursing home.

But in typical Grandmother fashion, she was happy, positive and thankful.

That is what I strive to be.
Grandmother and her four daughters.

Grandmother and my sister Katy. She is the youngest grandchild.

Grandmother and my cousins Jon and Steve. The boys of the family!

A few of the Great grandgirls. Lexi, Aspen and Kylie.
Maddie was at a Junior High All-District Band tryout. (That's stuff for another post..)

If you read many of my posts, you know that family is at the core of my being.
My grandmother helped to instill this in me.
I am so thankful that my children know their grand grandmother!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Fabulous Fifties

Lexi brought a note home from school saying that Monday would be the 50th day of school and that the students could dress up like the 50's and that they needed to bring 50 small non-food items. Great.

I am soooo not into that kinda thing. And interestingly enough, we had made it all the way through elementary and intermediate school with Maddie without a poodle skirt... but Lexi was desperate for one. She didn't ask me for one though. She asked her friend if the friend's mom could make her one. Nice. Yep, that will make you feel guilty.

So, how did I use my Sunday morning? I went and bought fabric and made the skirt.  Lexi was sooo excited. Here is the fashion shoot/practice run for tomorrow. The skirt was really quite simple to make, and Lexi was beside herself with joy. The poodle on it is uber small, but the only one that we could find. Lexi didn't care, we also have the word Paris and Paris attractions on the skirt. Really, it's a Fancy Nancy type poodle skirt-- TOTALLY LEXI!

Isn't she adorbable!! Oh how I love my fancy Lexi!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Halloween Carnival

The halloween carnival at our local university is a fun tradition.
It's a good price and all the ticket sales support the organizations on campus.

This year Lexi went as a Pirate Princess, Kylie as Super Girl and
Maddie as a tween that did not want to attend!

Lexi and one of her best buds.

The girls all had a great time. Including Maddie who humored us. :) 

Can't believe another Halloween has come and gone!