Monday, November 21, 2016

Sometimes I Forget

My husband is an amazing human being. He's funny and kind, honest and hardworking, caring and understanding. He goes out of his way to do special things to make people smile. He notices everything (seriously, I can't get anything past him) and he remembers so many little moments I find myself forgetting. I constantly find myself falling in love with him again and again every time I discover - or rediscover - something that makes him awesome.

These few days prior to Thanksgiving, I've caught myself reflecting on how lucky I truly am to be married to such a wonderful man. I am thankful for his love, his ability to communicate, his daddy extraordinaire-ness, his knowledge, and his incredibly sexy body. Having Cam has shown me a different side of Nick that I'm getting to know. Since we're rarely "just the two of us" lately, I'm reminded of the role Nick plays in other people's lives every day. He's not just a great husband, but so many other "great" things to the other people in his life. 

Sometimes I forget that he's a great son who is there for his parents when they need him. Sometimes I forget he's a great brother who appreciates his brother and sister. Sometimes I forget he's a great uncle who enjoys playing with his nieces and nephews and prides himself on buying "cool" presents for their birthdays and Christmas. Sometimes I forget he's a great friend who cherishes his friendships with people he's known for years and would pretty much drop everything if his friends needed him. Sometimes I forget he's a great coworker who makes the people he works with enjoy their workdays. Sometimes I forget he's a great stranger who is friendly to those he meets at the store.

The bottom line is, he's not just "my husband" and I know that. He's an incredible man who I'm lucky to have by my side in life, but also so fortunate to be a role model for our son. If Cam turns out to be half the man Nick is, I'll feel so proud.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Cam & Mommy "At Work"


This little guy is being a rock star today, letting me get some writing and design work done on the computer. Nick and I reworked the upstairs a little bit, so now we have a family room complete with a couch and loveseat, television, and a desk and computer. It's the perfect place to hang out to relax or to get some stuff done. Cam seems to enjoy it, too! At this rate, I'm hoping to have some new resources posted by next week if the little man lets me get a couple of hours in every day.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Leftover Turkey Surprise

So we are all familiar with the Thanksgiving tradition of a turkey dinner. But after all of the relatives have gone home and the football games have ended, what do you do with the leftover turkey in the fridge?

This past Saturday, my husband and I made a turkey dinner complete with mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, and cranberry sauce. (I don't bother making sweet potatoes or squash when it's just us because I'm the only one who eats it.) Even though I'm a big fan of a warm and filling meal like that, I think I might enjoy the week that follows even more. We've found so many dishes to make with the leftover turkey that I end up looking forward to those more than anything.

Turkey Sandwiches

This is probably the most cliche use of leftover turkey, but it's one of my favorites. Whether you're a cold turkey with Miracle Whip and lettuce on sandwich bread kind of person (like yours truly) or a hot turkey sandwich with gravy and cranberry sauce kind of person (like my husband), turkey sandwiches are yummy!

Turkey Soup

Growing up, my dad always made turkey soup with the leftover carcass and bones. I've started to do the same. Is there anything better than a nice hearty soup on a chilly fall day? I don't think so! One of the best things about soup is that you can customize it to your taste preferences. Like a lot of veggies? Add them! Not a fan of salt? Let people salt their bowls to their tastes. And if you're lucky, there will even be some left to freeze for quick meals in the future.

Turkey & Cheese Roll-Ups

Fast and easy are two qualities I appreciate in a dinner at least once a week (especially with a new baby in the house). Basically anything I can wrap up in a tortilla shell and cook is awesome. I personally like these baked in the oven, but others may enjoy them fried on the stove top in quesadilla fashion. It's up to you. All you need is cubed or shredded turkey, flour tortillas, your favorite cheese, and butter. I roll them up and bake them in a glass casserole pan, but like I said, folding them in half and frying them have the same effect. They take about 10 minutes of prep time and are sure to please!

Turkey Clubs

I challenge you to name a sandwich that isn't improved when bacon is added to it. Turkey clubs are on the top of that list. Fresh sliced turkey, thick sliced bacon, lettuce, and tomato... Mmm, mmm, mmm! I like mine baked with some kettle cooked salt and vinegar chips on the side. (And now my mouth is watering... Great.)

Fried Turkey & Rice

Another relatively easy meal calls for turkey, rice, and some vegetables (I personally like peas and carrots). I like this dish with fried chicken, pork, or ham, too. The nice thing is, it's versatile. I make rice ahead of time and let it cool before I fry the turkey and add the veggies and rice. And voila! It's ready to eat in no time - and it's another great meal for those cold nights when you need a nice warm meal to fill you up!

So when armed with a refrigerator full of Thanksgiving leftovers and posed with the ever elusive question, "What's for dinner?", hopefully you will have some new ideas!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Autumn Writing Prompts

Looking for some topics to write about in your journal appropriate for this time of year? Wanting to inspire your students to write something new and different? Here are some writing prompts with an autumn theme that might come in handy.

  • Autumn is a time when we are surrounded by many visual changes in our environment. Leaves are changing colors and falling off the trees, flowers and gardens are returning to the earth, and the wind is blowing cooler air to replace the warmth of summer. What changes do you see yourself going through this autumn? Are there any changes you hope to make this season?
  • Halloween is a popular holiday among children and adults alike. It's a day when we can dress up in costumes and pretend to be someone or something we are not. If you could take on any trait that you do not currently have for one day, what would it be? Explain.
  • With Thanksgiving right around the corner in the United States, it's a great time to reflect upon what we are each thankful for in our lives. Who are the people in your life you are most grateful to know? What are the things you possess that you appreciate most? What is it about yourself that you are happiest about?
  • Autumn's rainfall and chilly temperatures make spending more time inside inevitable. What are your top ten favorite indoor activities to do on a rainy fall day?
  • Describe the view from your window using adjectives appealing to your five senses. Be as descriptive as possible.
Have some great autumn-related prompts of your own? Feel free to share them in the comments!

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Back in Action

I'm hoping my "baby brain" is gone now and I can get in the habit of updating my blog again on a somewhat regular basis. I appreciate the emails I've received regarding suggestions for resources I should add to the site and/or create for lifelong learners to utilize. I will most certainly review your suggestions and add them when I get a chance.

Oh, did I say my "baby brain" is gone now? That's right! I gave birth to a beautiful baby boy on August 24, 2016. Way, way, way ahead of schedule at 32 weeks pregnant! Even though he was early and a little peanut at birth weighing 4 pounds, 1 ounce, Cameron is absolutely perfect and healthy in every way. At eight weeks old, he's already close to 8 pounds and growing quicker every day. Nick and I are so blessed to be able to call such an awesome little kiddo our son.

Other than being a mommy now, I am planning on completing some projects I've been working on while I'm on an extended maternity leave from teaching. I'll post resources as I complete them and make them available for sale. As always, thank you for reading... I hope my resources continue to help in your learning and teaching endeavors!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Bad Blogger

Have I really not posted a new entry since last year?! Wow, time really gets away from me sometimes!

I have to say... There has been so many things keeping me busy these first four and a half months of the year. Subbing, housework, morning sickness... Oh yeah, I'M PREGNANT! So I guess you could say that has been taking up a big part of my time. First it was just the initial excitement and urge to tell everyone while simultaneously worrying about any possible thing that could go wrong and overthinking everything I ate and did. Then there was the morning sickness, extreme fatigue phase. And now? I'm in the "everything is going smoothly" phase. Sure, my back is starting to hurt and I'm trying my hardest to get used to laying on my side and avoiding foods that cause indigestion... But overall, I'm starting to understand those women who have been telling me how much they loved being pregnant.

I'm due in October, right before my birthday. When Nick and I started dating and getting serious, I told him I wanted a baby before I was 30. He sure knows how to stick to a deadline! I'm due 11 days before my birthday. Poor Nick if we have a girl and she insists on a "birthday week" like I do - haha. In all seriousness, though, I'd be excited to have a girl or a boy. I told Nick when we first found out I was pregnant (which was Valentine's Day, by the way... Some girls get flowers or candy - I get to pee on a stick and become the happiest girl in the world!) that I didn't want to find out the gender. Now that we're getting closer to that "big sonogram" where the baby will look like a baby and we could find out if we're going to be seeing a lot of pink or a lot of blue, I'm sort of wishing I'd wanted to find out. But as long as I can stay strong (really, Nick isn't letting me change my mind at this point since he knows how important the surprise is to me), I'm excited to wait and have the grand reveal at the hospital!

So right now, I'm about four and a half months along... We've picked out our crib (which I'm pretty confident we're ordering this weekend!). We've started the registry for the baby shower. We're going to spruce up the nursery this weekend so we can assemble the furniture when we get it. It's all happening quickly and I have to say, I can't believe how fast the weeks go by! I know this summer is going to fly by (especially judging by the amount of plans we already have on our fridge calendar) and before we know it, I know we'll be welcoming our little bundle of joy and forgetting what it felt like to get a decent night's sleep. And I gotta say... I can't wait!

Other than "everything baby", life is busy. I was going to take some courses this summer to apply for another certification, but that's sort of taking a back burner for a bit. I've been subbing daily at Starpoint and I'm hoping that even when I take a few months off in the fall to have the baby, my reputation will ensure that I'll have a steady schedule when I want to go back to work. Nick is back on days in the office at work and it's been so great for us to live a "normal" life again. Seeing each other in the evenings, both going to bed at night, sharing a bed, and waking up in the morning. You never realize how great that simple part of life is until it's turned upside-down for a while.

There are only five weeks left in the school year! I can't believe it. I hate to realize how much I haven't been writing, but in all fairness, I have been making time to write by hand in a Moleskine journal Nick bought me for Christmas. It's a lot easier to jot some ideas down during the day at school or before bed than it is to get on the computer and write a decent amount. And honestly, most times I end up just reading on my Kindle or going to bed early lately. Making a baby really takes it out of you!

I suppose that's all for now... I will consciously try to write more often from now on, but no promises!