Friday, May 30, 2014

School's Out For Summer!! Well...Kinda..Not Really

School is officially out.  My last day was Tuesday, but somehow I just couldn't stay away from the place until today.  A lot of that has to do with the fact that summer school started on Wednesday, and I volunteered to help out for a couple of days to make sure the computer labs were up and running so that the teachers who will be teaching the Minecraft classes for the first half of summer school were trained and ready.  I now have today and all of next week off before it's my turn to teach some summer school classes.

As you can see, it's going to be a tough week.  Sitting on my patio, enjoying the view of the pool, getting my creative juices flowing once again so that I can get this blog up and running again.  It's a hard life, but someone has to do it.  I'm kind of hoping that we can get rid of all the rain we've been having so the pool can warm up a bit so that I might be able to enjoy some pool time alone before I'm gone each day.

In addition to doing some blogging, I also have to write a 500 word essay about my teaching for entrance in to college to get my Master's.  I was supposed to have it done before school got out, but you know...with all that extra time I had on my hands... I somehow let it get away from me.  Then, once blogging and essay writing is over with, I plan on finding the books I've been waiting to read and doing exactly that.  With my feet up, a cup of coffee, and the birds chirping in the distance.

Heaven.  On Earth.

There's not many opportunities that I get to spend some time alone.  Without the kids around.  Or even Hubby for that matter.  He's here, but he's going to be sleeping or playing his video games during the day, so it won't interfere with my "alone time".  I love my kids and all the time we get to spend together, but everyone needs and deserves some time to themselves now and then.  All the kids are in summer school.  Peanut had to go because of being in show choir next year.  It helps her get ready for the transition to being a freshman, and also helps her make some new friends.  Butter and Jelly are just going because it's fun, educational, and they earn $100 for doing it.  I will get up and drive them every day in order to get them $100 each to do something fun with once summer school is over.

A week of sitting around doing absolutely nothing sounds fantastic right now, but I wonder how long it will be before I'm itching for something to do? I guess if I get bored of sitting and enjoying the peace and quiet, then there's plenty of gardening and cleaning to do.  Ugh.  Cleaning.  I'm pretty sure I will have to be desperate for something to do if that becomes an option.  But, then again, sometimes it's nice to clean house while the kids are gone and aren't messing it up as fast as it's being cleaned.

Still, though.  There's weekends for house cleaning.  Don't think I'll run out of things to do before cleaning house becomes an option.


Thankfully, I'm currently taking some online work-at-my-own-pace college courses as well.  I enrolled in them for the specific purpose of having something to do while the kids were away and once summer school was over.  I somehow never get tired of learning.  And, I'm taking classes I want to take rather than classes I have to take.  That will change once I start my Master's program in August, so these college classes are really to help get me back in to school mode.  And then there's always napping.  That's another activity that can be added to the list of things to do.  And I'm pretty sure that napping will be something I can do right here on my patio, as well.

Even though it's not yet warm enough for me to get in to the pool, I can't complain about the weather too much.  It's gorgeous, actually.  It's been staying in the upper 70's to lower 80's each day, and it's rained quite a bit.  The rain has washed away some of the dust, but it's causing everything to grow at super sonic speeds.  Meaning the grass has to be mowed more often, which means more allergy problems for me.  But, while it's wet outside, Hubby can't mow, so I guess I should just enjoy the rain and coolness.

And now, with talking about all the stuff I have planned to do, I want to get to doing it.  First up?  500 word essay.  That HAS to be done ASAP.  So, I better get to getting it done if I want to do anything else, like my reading or the scheduled nap.  Can't be taking things off the schedule on day one!!

T.G.I.SUMMER is all I'm thinking right now!!

Have a great Friday, everyone!!


Monday, May 26, 2014

A Pr-Emotional Week

This past week has been a blogging DREAM, giving me so much to write about.  The problem was, though, I didn't have 5 minutes to sit down and even attempt to write something because I've been so darned busy.  So, instead, I'm going to write about it now and moving forward being that I'm almost done with school for the year.

Last week was the kids' last week of school. With the last week of school comes promotions.  Specifically kindergarten promotion and 8th grade promotion.  And, I was lucky enough to have two children that were participating in one or the other.

Jelly officially graduated from kindergarten.  My baby girl is now going to be a 1st grader.  The event was very cute.  Hubby, P-Momma, and I met at her school to watch the short assembly.  Jelly was so excited to have her Mommy, Daddy, and Grammy at the event.

Waiting for the ceremony to begin

Happy girl with Daddy and Grammy

So proud of my little graduate

Best friends for life
Our sweet girl with Mommy & Daddy

Once that was over, it was back to work for me.  Until the end of the day, when it was time to prepare for the "BIG" event.  The events of events.  The biggest ceremony of the year:  8th grade promotion.

It is the prom of ceremonies for the 8th graders.  Girls spend tons of money on hair, nails, and dresses.  Guys get dressed up in tuxes and spit shined shoes.  Hours are put in, practicing, to make sure the event goes without a hitch.  It's been a year in the making for the day to finally arrive, and when it did, I couldn't stop the tears from flowing.  My baby girl was moving up in to high school, and the school made sure that the kids got the biggest of send-offs.

And the best way to explain the wonderful night is through the pictures...

There was the breakfast that was put on for the 8th graders by the local Methodist church...

Peanut helping herself to the yummy food
Peanut and her BBF (boy best friend)
Then there was getting the hair and make up done for the big night...

Hair's done
It was absolutely beautiful
Side view
After make-up had been applied
Then came putting on her dress.  It was so hard not to cry seeing her so dressed up...

Isn't she absolutely STUNNING?
Before the actual ceremony, the kids were invited to a pre-promotion reception.  All the kids were treated to cupcakes and apple cider.  No parents or families were allowed in to the reception room, but being a teacher in the school helps get some rules bent.  I was allowed in for a couple of minutes to shoot a couple of pics...

After the reception, it was time to get the show on the road.  The kids filed in to the gym to the graduation processional music.  They all looked very spiffy and professional in their graduation gowns.  The ceremony kicked off with recognizing some of the accolades of some of the students.  With each recognition that was given, it made me tear up to see Peanut stand.  She had been one of twelve students to take the high school Algebra class, and then made an advanced score on the final test.  She also ranked in the top 10% of her 8th grade class, which was one out of seven from the seventy students in her class.  An honor that earned her honor cords to wear over her robe.

Another honor that Peanut was given was the chance to sing the dedicated graduation song with one of her best friends, while another friend accompanied them on the guitar.  

If ranking in the top 10 percent of her class, receiving advanced in a high school level class, and getting to sing the graduation song wasn't enough, Peanut also got to do one of the highest honors of 8th grade promotion:  Give the commencement speech.

Now, in years past, the recognition/commencement speech was given by the class' valedictorian.  But, last year, the county decided to no longer have a valedictorian.  So, this year, the opportunity to give the speech was opened up to all 8th graders who wanted to give the speech.  The interested students had to write a speech and then it was selected by a panel of judges.  Peanut's speech was selected, and she couldn't have been more happy.  It's something she'd talked about doing since the beginning of 7th grade.  

She did an absolutely AMAZING job with the speech...

After the speech, it was time for the reading of the names.  I couldn't have been more proud to watch my little girl walk across the stage to receive her diploma...

It was such an emotional night, and I couldn't have been more proud.  Her father and I, along with Grammy, Jelly and Butter all sat in the bleachers cheering her on.  I cried like a little baby as I thought about how in just 4 short years, we'll be doing this all over again.  Except, next time, she won't be moving on to another grade, she'll be graduating from high school.  

I cried thinking about how she won't pop in to my classroom at some point throughout the day to tell me something, ask me something, or just to say hi.  She won't be in the same school with me anymore.

After the ceremony, we took some time taking some pictures...

Peanut and her very special teacher.  Peanut absolutely adores her.

A quick pic with Momma

Peanut with one of her friends

The girls.. missing one 

The whole gang... LOVE all of these girls

The line seems to keep getting bigger

Such a cute pic of Peanut and one of her guy friends

After all of these pics, don't you know we didn't get a SINGLE pic of her and the family.  I managed to get a picture with her, but we missed out on pictures with Dad, Grammy, and little brother and sister.  It makes me so sad that we didn't get those pictures.

The night did end with one spectacular photo, and that was of Peanut receiving her graduation gift from Grammy.  It was quite the set-up situation.  Grammy gave her a card that contained a pass card to the aquatic center.  Peanut was given the choice to trade that gift in for another gift that was located in the trunk of Grammy's car.  Peanut, after some serious deliberation, decided to make the trade.  And then this happened....


What a priceless photo.  I was so happy for her, as it's something she's been wanting for a very long time.  It was the perfect way to end a perfect evening.

The following day, I spent almost all day in tears.  It was so hard to think about it being the last day my little girl would be in the same building with me.  She is now a freshman in high school.  She will be riding to school with me each day, jumping on a bus, and riding to the high school.

And next year, I'll be doing it all over again when Butter goes through 8th grade promotion.

Tomorrow is my last day of work before my summer starts.  I have a lot of work to do in my classroom, but I'm ready for the summer to begin.  I'll be teaching summer school in a couple of weeks, but between now and then I plan on getting some serious R&R.

I also plan on spending some time blogging more.  I'll have a lot more time, now, to write more and that's something I am very excited about.  I've missed blogging.  I've missed sharing what's going on in my life.  And now that the summer is starting, I'll have plenty to talk about.


Monday, May 19, 2014

Firsts and Lasts

This is my first post I've written in well over a week.  I know that my blogging days seem to be on the way out, but I assure you that I'm just going through a little down time.  I'm not quitting or giving up.  You haven't heard the last of me.  I'm just taking a little sabbatical.  Posting when I feel the urge to write, rather than forcing myself to write each day.

Today marks the last Monday of the school year, and the first day of the last week.  This is it.  Our last day is Friday, and then the summer begins.  To say that I'm ready would be an understatement.  I'm beyond ready.  Not because I want the year to be over, but because I'm just ready for a rest.  A break.  A shut down from being so busy ALL of the time.  Yet, even with school ending, that doesn't mean the crazy is stopping.  It just means I go from teaching school and doing all the extra activities to teaching summer school and doing all the crazy activities.  But, summer school is a lot less stressful, so it will be somewhat better.

But, back to this week.

This week, my first daughter will also participate in her first (and only) 8th grade promotion.  Yep, I have a kid moving up in to high school.  It just doesn't seem real.  In a few short days, I'll have a kid that's a freshman in high school.

Friday will be the last day she rides and stays at school with me.  I'll no longer be able to walk down the hallway at lunchtime to say hi, or go visit her in one of her classes, or have her show up in my classroom to tell me about something exciting or a problem she's having or that she needs money.

And knowing that dang near breaks my heart.  It will be so weird not having her there.

It's probably the reason that I've been in tears at the sheer mention of Thursday's promotion ceremony.  The night she "graduates" from 8th grade in to high school.  All of the 8th graders will dress up, put on a graduation gown, and walk across the stage and receive their 8th grade "diploma".

Yet it's that and so much more for my Peanut.  Not only is she graduating, but she's the one giving the commencement speech.  Something neither of us thought was ever going to happen.  It's something she's dreamed about, but just thought that because she's only been in the school 2 years, she wouldn't be eligible to do something like giving the speech.  She's not the valedictorian.  It doesn't work that way.  Up until last year, the child with the highest grade point average gave the commencement speech, but it was changed this year.

This year, the kids had the opportunity to "try out" for the honor.  In doing so, the kids wrote their speeches and submitted them anonymously.   They were then read and judged by the Jr. High teachers.  Peanut's speech was picked as the winner.

So, she will be giving her first public speech.

I guarantee it definitely won't be her last.

Not only that, but she is also singing a song with a friend that will be the class's "graduation song".  She'll stand up on that podium, after giving her speech, and sing.  Something she's only done once before in her life, and that was two days ago at the school's annual talent show.

So, as you can see, 8th grade promotion is going to be quite the special event for Peanut.  And I can't wait!!

Yesterday, I took her out to buy her a new dress and shoes for the special night.  And, what she picked out were absolutely stunning.  Her beauty in that dress and those heels took my breath away.  I mean, my daughter is amazingly beautiful, but she looked so grown up.  As she walked out of the dressing room in the dress she will wear Thursday night, tears instantly sprung to my eyes.  Could that be my sweet, little Peanut standing in front of me?

Yes.  Yes it was.  Except she's definitely not so little anymore.

But, she's not the only one that will be taking part in a special graduation ceremony this week. My first child and my last child are both graduating on Thursday.  Peanut from 8th grade and Jelly from kindergarten.  Yep, my youngest child is now moving in to 1st grade.  She's growing up so fast.  It's bittersweet knowing that the first year of school is officially over for my last child.

Where is all the time going?

There's just four more years left until my oldest graduates high school, five years for my second child, and thankfully I still have twelve years left for Jelly.  That still sounds like a lot of time, so that makes me feel somewhat better.

But, right now, it's the last few minutes before I have to go and get ready for work.  I won't actually be in the classroom today.  Instead, I'll be attending a common core training.  I'm not sure how I feel about being away from my class on the last Monday.  I mean, I never like being gone, but I really don't like being gone during the last week of school.  The kids are riled up, excited, a little crazy.  I just like to be there to help control the crazy a little, but it is what it is and I'm sure I'll learn a lot today.

Well, I have to admit that it felt good getting to write this morning.  I've missed my morning time.  My alone time.  My destress time.  I'm excited about jumping back in to blogging mode once school gets out and life starts slowing down a little.

But, I have plenty of firsts and lasts to get through this week before that can happen.

Which starts right now...

Have a great Monday, everyone!!


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Being a Mother

Today is Mother's Day.  It's also one week since I've last written a blog post.  I had these amazing plans to write several posts throughout the week about my amazing trip to Kansas City.  Remember that?  That's what I said I was going to do.

Yet, here I am a week later, no posts.  Not a single one all week long.  And, you want to know why?  Because I have been too busy to write, too tired to get up earlier or stay up later. I have been, instead, using that time doing the thing I love doing even more than blogging:  Being a mother.

Today is the day that I, along with all the other amazing mothers in the country, get recognized for being moms.  Kids buy their moms cards and candy and flowers.  They may clean and cook and pamper their moms.  They tell their mothers how much they love and appreciate them.

And, today, I'm getting the one thing I wanted more than anything.  A day home with my kids, relaxing, not having a single thing to do other than just enjoying a day at home.

You see, when I think of being a mother, I picture my life.  As it is right now.  No time, being tired all the time, running here there and everywhere, spending every waking hour with them.  Baseball, T-ball, softball, carnivals, field trips, appointments.  Games, practices, meetings.  Dinner on the run, dinner in the car, homework and daily recaps as we're driving from one destination to the next.  Leaving as the sun is coming up and coming home well after the sun has gone done.

Yet, despite the busy, still knowing how the kids are doing in their classes, any issues they are having, fun conversations they had with their friends at recess or at lunch, contests they are competing in, listening to them practice and rehearse speeches and spelling bee words.  Not missing a minute of the action.
I don't know how many times I've complained about how tired I've been this past week.  Yet, the truth is, I wouldn't trade this fast paced lifestyle for anything.  I may not be getting home until after 10PM and then up and out at 6AM the next morning, but the hours in between are spent doing my most favorite things:  Being a mother and a teacher.  All day in the classroom, all evening at school or sport functions with my kids.

Today, I'm getting the day to relax and do nothing (except for 2 weeks worth of laundry that has piled up with us being gone so much), yet you want to hear something funny?  I'm bored out of my ever-lovin' mind.  I am already tired of sitting on the couch.  I'm tired of the kids being outside playing, cleaning up around the pool, or in their rooms enjoying their "alone time" playing video games.  I'm tired of doing nothing.  I want to be gone, doing something fun, or at least doing something besides sitting on the couch.

Funny, isn't it?  After spending every day on the go, wanting nothing more than to just have a day to rest and relax, after a couple of hours I'm ready to be on the go again.  Rest time can be over.  And, I guarantee after I'm back at it for a few days, I'll be asking for that day off once again.

But, honestly, I can't think of ANYTHING I'd rather do besides spend every waking minute with my children.  They give my life purpose.  They are my everything.  I honestly don't know what I'd do without them.

They keep me busy, they drive me nuts, they always seem to need or want something.  But, there's not a single thing about them that I would change.  There's not a single thing I can say about my kids that could ever explain how much I love them.  They have made me the person that I am, they have shaped and molded me in to the mother and teacher I have become, and I know that my life would not be as amazing as it is if they weren't apart of it.

So, today may be a day where I get to relax and soak up the attention given to me for being a mother.. but, in reality, it's my kids that deserve the recognition.  Because I wouldn't be a mother without them.

I love my children more than anything, and I'm honored, proud, and extremely thankful for the chance to show them how incredibly blessed I am to have them as my children.

Happy Mother's Day to me, indeed, because being the mother for my children is the most incredibly awesome job in the ENTIRE world.


Monday, May 05, 2014

Worlds of Fun, Indeed!! Part I

What an AMAZING weekend I had.  And capitalizing the letters in "amazing" just doesn't skim the surface at how much emphasis I want to put on that word.  I haven't had that much fun in YEARS... so many years.  I was able to let go of any stress, and feel like a total kid again.  I got to do things I never thought I'd do.  I got to laugh until I cried, walk miles and miles, feel the rush of adrenaline fly through my veins, and not let a single worry slip in to my brain.

I got to spend two days and one night in Kansas City.  Peanut's Jr. High band got the opportunity to perform at a music festival hosted at Worlds of Fun.

And there's so much I want to share, I just know that I won't be able to fit it all in today, so I'm going to spend the next couple of days sharing all about my weekend.

Today, I'm working backwards a little and just discussing how I feel about the experiences.  How the weekend affected me, rather than what I actually did.  I'll be sure to share a complete detailed breakdown of the actual trip, and the places I got to visit, at some point this week.

Let me just say that two days ago, I was absolutely TERRIFIED of heights.  And I mean petrified.  It was so bad that I got nauseous looking up at the dome of the capital building when I visited Jefferson City a few weeks ago.  Watching Peanut standing up there, looking down at me, made me light headed and I had to sit down for a few minutes to get my bearings.  So, I'll be honest and say that the thought of going to a theme park was a little intimidating.

I mean, I was excited.  The last time I visited a theme park, Jelly was 6 months old.  So that would be almost 6 years ago.  And back then, my fear of heights was mild.  It hadn't intensified to the ridiculous level it is now.  But, even back then, there were rides I refused to get on due to the height of them.

I have always liked theme parks and just the idea of getting away for a mini vacation was exciting.  I had already made the plan that I'd try my best to get on some rides, to not let my fear take over, and walk away without any regrets.  And, I can happily say I did that.  In fact, I made myself get on rides I never, in a million years, thought I'd get on.  One of which takes you up 205 feet in the air, and drops you down at a speed of 70 miles an hour.  Rollarcoasters that have you spinning upside down in continuous corkscrews, rides that spin you around so fast that you're literally stuck to the side walls as the floor disappears, and a ride that combines a tilt-a-whirl with a rollarcoaster.

Crazy stuff.

Every single time I got in line, I just told myself that the hardest part was getting on.  Once I was on, there was no turning back.  I just had to suck it up and commit to sitting down, getting strapped in, and then praying that I'd made the right decision.

We were able to spend the entire day at the theme park, and not ONCE did I refuse to get on a ride.  There were several that required some coaxing from my kid companions, but none where I completely chickened out.  I walked away feeling so proud of myself, and the only regrets I took with me were regrets that we didn't have more time and I wasn't able to get on more rides.  There were a few that we missed, that I really would have loved to try out, but I'd much rather have that regret than regretting not getting on anything.

By the time the day was over, I was completely and utterly exhausted.  My feet and back were screaming for mercy.  I had spent about 9 hours walking around the park.  NINE HOURS!!  Sitting only for the short few minutes a ride lasted or the 10 minutes I sat watching the kids perform in the band, or the 15 minutes I sat while we ate dinner.

The drive from the park next door to the little resort I had booked a cabin seemed to last forever.  I have never been so ready to lay my head down on a pillow.  In fact, I don't even think I laid my head down on the pillow.  It was after 11PM by the time we got in to our room, got ourselves changed, and organized ourselves well enough to get in to bed.  Once we'd done all of that, I just collapsed on to the bed, and I didn't open my eyes again for a good 7 hours.

Then, for day two of our KC adventure, I thought it would be great to spend another day walking.

We decided to visit the Kansas City Zoo.  A place I've wanted to visit for a long time, and Peanut has only ever been to one zoo that she's visited over and over and over again.  She was ready for something different.

The weather was absolutely beautiful, the place was absolutely beautiful, and I didn't even mind spending another 5 hours walking.  It was worth every minute of it.

And, I'm out of time.  I have to get ready for work.  Which is why I figure I'd have to spend a couple of days this week sharing all about my weekend adventure.  I'll be back tomorrow, and will share more about the crazy rides I made myself get on to.

Right now though?  It's back to reality, back to work, and back to life as I know it.

Have a great Monday!!!


Friday, May 02, 2014

Hello Friday!!

Ah, Friday.  My favorite F word.  Not the only F word that may or may not have escaped my lips in the past couple of weeks, but definitely my favorite F word.

It's been a week, let me tell you.  Then, the week before MAP testing always is.  Review, review, and more review.  Practice testing, testing strategies, testing scenarios....over, and over, and over again.  Yet, I've finally entered in to that state of mind that says "I've done all that I can, there's nothing more I can really do now".  It's put up or shut up time.  My kids will either rock it, or they won't.  I have spent the school year teaching them everything they need to know in order to ace that test... it's now up to them to show it.

And, all of a sudden, I finally feel like Obi Wan Kenobi.  "The force is strong with these children.  But, they must let the force guide them."

I have to say, though. I am pretty proud of my kids.  It's been tough putting up with me and my crazy stress.  But, despite being a little riled up, the kids have worked hard and dealt with me like champs.  I told them yesterday afternoon that they only had one more week to put up with me, and then all would be right in the world once again.

Thankfully, before the fun of MAP testing actually begins, I will get a weekend away to relax, destress, and prepare for the week ahead.  Well, OK, so I'm not sure there will be any relaxing, there will be lots of stress, and absolutely NO preparation for next week... but the weekend away part is true.

Tomorrow, Peanut's school band is going to Kansas City to perform in a band competition at the theme park World's of Fun.  So, we'll be boarding the kids on to buses at 6:30 tomorrow morning and heading to Kansas City.  I'll be driving my car behind the bus.  We'll arrive, spend time enjoying the theme park, the kids will perform, and then we'll have a couple more hours riding on the rides.  Then, the rest of the band will leave, while Peanut, her friend, and I will be staying.  We're spending the night, and making a mini-getaway out of it.

We'll probably stay at the park until it closes, go back to our cabin, get up early on Sunday, and spend the day exploring what Kansas City has to offer.

I.  Can't.  Wait.

Not a single bit of relaxing.  Walking around ALL day.  Stressing about the heights I have to endure if I'm going to ride on anything.  Staying up late.  Getting up early.  Stressing about driving around a city I've never been to before.  Getting to see all kinds of awesome sights, having amazing amounts of fun, and probably coming home ten times more exhausted than when I left.

What could be better than that the weekend before MAP testing?

I really am looking forward to it.

But, before I can head to Kansas City, I need to get through today, get through ball practices, and take Butter and Jelly to P-Momma.

And, before I can do any of that, I need to go and get ready for work.


Thursday, May 01, 2014

"Back" In Business

I know, I know.  It's been several days since I've shown my face.  I bet you were all thinking I'd thrown in the towel, huh? That I'd decided my blogging days were over.  Well, I can assure you, that's definitely not the case.

Sunday morning, I woke up with a little twinge in the bottom of my back.  The kind of twinge one receives from sleeping awkwardly.  It was a little uncomfortable, but nothing major.  That's why I was able to finish up the last blog post I'd been working on.  Well, that little "twinge" had turned in to full-blown, unbearable, tear inducing pain by midday.  I was in so much pain that I couldn't sit.  At all.  I had to stand or lay flat in order to get any relief.

I spent some time laying completely flat on my laminate floor.  It helped keep the pain at bay, but it didn't help when I had to stand or sit up.  The pain shot from my mid-back down to my toes on the right side.  Any time I tried to just sit on a chair or on the couch, the pain intensified.  It was more like trying to sit down on an electrical current, being that the pain would just shoot through my body.  I was fine when I was standing straight up, but any time that I bent at the waist it was game over.

I did manage to get out and do some grocery shopping, but trying to do any of my school work was almost out of the question.  I couldn't sit at my computer.  Finally, I decided to pad my bed up with pillows, find the most comfortable position I could tolerate with my computer, and laid on my bed for as long as I could in order to get some work done.  It wasn't very long.  I had to give up, and just lay on the bed with pillows supporting my back for the rest of the day/night.

The next morning, I hopped out of bed totally forgetting why I was completely encased in pillows.  The jump out of bed quickly reminded me, as I felt that tell-tale shot of pain fly down my right side.  I hobbled around after that getting ready for work.  The drive to work was MISERABLE.  Trying to sit on the driver's seat was already hard enough, but every pot hole and bump felt like I was trying to drive over craters and canyons.

The entire day at work, I was fine as long as I didn't sit down.  Which is good for a teacher.  I don't spend much time sitting down during my day.  Lunch was a little painful, but I made it through.

Monday night, I had softball practice.  I forgot about my back several times, but was quickly reminded when I tried throwing a ball or catching one.  The only time I actually felt some kind of relief is when I decided to be totally idiotic and hit a ball to run the bases.  It was a painful run, but the stretching on my back actually felt pretty good.  I finished up practice, though, regretting what I'd done.

Monday night was another evening of laying on my bed, propped with pillows.  Tuesday, I was still in pain, but I had noticed the pain had decreased some.  It was still uncomfortable to sit, but not unbearable.  I started to think that maybe running wasn't such a bad idea, and that it'd actually helped my back.

Tuesday I had to go to Jelly's Family Night after school and that lasted until 7PM.  I then had to drive to Joplin to pick Peanut and Butter up from a track meet.  It was almost 8PM when I made it to them, and by the time we had some dinner and drove home, it was 10PM when we were pulling in the driveway.

Yesterday, I was basically back to my old self, but after getting home so late I didn't feel like getting up to blog.  I stayed in bed.

So, today I'm back.  And I will be honest and say that I'm really not too sad that I didn't get to blog the past few days.  I really did need a break.  Blogging, lately, has become more like a chore than an enjoyable hobby.  I got up every morning feeling like it was something I had to do, a part of my routine, and not much thought was being put in to what I had to say.

Also, with as stressed as I've been lately, it's probably a good thing I had a few days off.  I haven't had the best luck, lately, with writing stuff that hasn't somehow or in someway been misconstrued and either hurting someone's feelings or painting me in a light I don't wish to be painted.  While I love to write without really thinking much about it, and letting my feelings and emotions flow, I know I can't and really have to work on monitoring and adjusting when necessary.

The week is coming to an end, and I have one extremely busy and fun weekend coming up.  Peanut has a band trip to Kansas City, and I'm tagging along as a chaperon.  We are going to World's of Fun, and I decided to book a cabin and spend the night instead of riding the bus back.  Peanut has invited her friend to stay with us, and we're going to spend Sunday doing some sightseeing in Kansas City.  I'm very excited.  It's been YEARS since I had a vacation, weekend away, or even just a trip to a theme park.  So, I plan on making the most of it.  PLUS, it will be a great way to prepare for the week of testing that we're facing next week.

It blows my mind that today is the 1st of May and that there is only 23 days left until we get out for summer.  That's only 18 instructional days.  Three and a half weeks.  Totally crazy.  But, I have to admit, I'm ready.  Very ready.

OK, that's it for me today.  It's that time to get ready for work.  I have to say that it feels good to be back, and I don't plan on making a habit of disappearing for days on end.

I'll be back tomorrow.  Hopefully.  It is another track meet night, but I don't think I'll be home so late tonight.

Have a great Thursday!!