Tag Archives: summer

Summer TIME

Today is the first official day that my kids and I have been home together since school got out last Thursday.

I had two days of teacher in-service following their last day, and they were also with their dad for a few days.

So today is OUR first day of summer.

This is OUR time.

How nice is it to be able to sit and talk and relax and have no cares about tomorrow.

No rushing, no scrambling, no giant To Do list. Just time.

Will we go get groceries today? Probably not.

Will I let my new licensed driver go pick up our favorite pizza? More than likely.

Will someone say they are bored? Already happened.

Will I let my son stay up to watch Game 3 of the NBA Finals? Absolutely.

Will I fall asleep while reading? Every night.

Will I sleep in tomorrow? Ask my dog.

Will I blog again soon? Only time will tell.


Last night I spent 30 minutes getting my classroom set up.

Yep, just 30 minutes.

I always get excited about working in my room, but this year is different.

Not that I am not excited. It’s just that the next two weeks are super busy and we haven’t had the greatest weather at all this summer. So instead of spending the last sunny moments indoors, I decided to go on a cloudy, blah evening.

30 minutes. No kids, no co-workers, no distractions.

I set up my furniture exactly like last year.

I hooked up my computer and printer in record time.

I put the supplies on the shelf exactly like last year.


I hung up the curtain, moved the fans to their usual positions, and tore the paper off the bulletin boards to expose last year’s motivational display.


I am sure many of you do the same thing – keep things the same every year out of habit and ease.

I actually like change and try to mix things up from year to year.

But this year, I am finding comfort in the familiar.  20120816-140055.jpg

I will be teaching almost the same students as last year (minus 4 8th graders) and I am finding comfort in that as well.

I feel like changing too much on them will take away from our consistent routine and the connection we established. I want to start where we left off. I want them to fall into the place we were in May. They know my expectations. I know their personalities and skills. My room is a safe and comfortable place.


There will be a lot of changes in our building this year (new administration, new faces, a new schedule for me). I will not get to work with my favorite math teacher and I will not get to work with Dee’s grade level.

However, some change can be good and I am anticipating a great year.

I’m off to a good start…

I can breathe easy the next eight days and enjoy this time in a way I never have before.


This post was written in its entirety on the hill at the lake.

The Halfway Point of Summer

I hope everyone is having a great summer and doing lots of exciting things…either close to home or in exotic places.

We’ve been sticking close to home, except for an overnight trip to Pittsburgh.

I really haven’t put much thought towards school although I did attend my iPad training at the end of June. (I know that is not in the spirit of this blog, but I honestly just. need. a. break.)

The Little Garden That Could….it’s out of control!!  I haven’t taken any pics in a while but I will post a full update on it soon!

On the 4th of July I started painting my kitchen from top to bottom which ended up being way more work than I anticipated.

Today I finally finished the whole project and the kitchen is fully functional again.


I have been spending a lot of time on Pinterest and this is a mash-up of some of my favorite ideas. It’s hanging in my newly painted kitchen now.

The kids have been getting along pretty well for the most part.   They did have a little argument the other day.  It had to do with the difference between something that is “not thawed” and something that is “frozen.”  It was then that I realized we’ve been at home for six weeks!!

I wish I had taken more pics on my camera and not on my iPhone.  But here is a little collage of our summer so far.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit


A little twist on the traditional definition of a free spirit…

Here are Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Ian running wild and free and full of spirit,

trying to catch bubbles on the 4th of July in 2007.

Just like a bubble, I know I can’t hold onto them forever.

I have to let them soar.





A New Olympic Event: Grape Picking

I moved into my house in December of 2008, so I have enjoyed 4 summers here.

One of my favorite things about my house is my grape arbor. I am not a gardener by any means, or a grape farmer, for that matter. It’s more for decorative purposes and I kind of let it grow as it wishes. And this thing certainly has a mind of it’s own.


Here is it in early spring 2009.


In the winter of 2010

grape arbor

Here it is in late summer 2011. Taking over the house.

The grape arbor has been the home to many birds. This year we had a cardinal nest and a mourning dove nest. Let me just tell you, Momma cardinals do not like you near their nests or their babies. And with the arbor right outside my front door….it was a little scary at times. Especially since I am afraid of birds.


Sometimes it’s scary walking out this door!

The grape arbor is also home to many wiffle balls, frisbees, and other sports equipment. Once something gets thrown up there, it’s probably not coming down.

We also use the arbor as a place to relax, to read, to play, to hide, and to eat dinner.


This is the view above in early spring.


Chilling out under the vines on a hot day

My little old neighbor, Maxine, has always been obsessed with my grape arbor. “Got any grapes?” she asks every time she comes over to visit.

However, for the first three years, the arbor produced no edible grapes. They went straight from hard green balls to “raisins” or rotten mush.


None of these grapes are good for eating. Poor Maxine!

Maxine was always bummed.

This year, the 4th summer, I am happy to say we have grapes! They are different than the grapes you buy at Giant Eagle. They have seeds and are very “gelatin-ish” inside. Definitely an acquired taste.

The other night, Admiral Bodee and the kids came down for one last get together before school started and we decided to harvest the grapes. Everyone was into it and we were on a mission to win a team gold medal in grape picking.


It was funny how much the kids were into it. Captain Kidd was all about quality control. Tweedle Ian wanted to climb higher than I would let him.


Delilah used her height to reach the highest vines (and take most of these pics). Tweedle Dee…well, she sometimes takes pride in doing the least amount of work. She is always the quiet comedian.


I told Admiral Bodee, “This is why farmers had so many kids back in the old days…so they could help with all the chores.”

(And then I looked around my flower beds and saw all the weeds and in my head had this great idea for another day….)

With some teamwork, we were able to collect about 9 cups of grapes.

Admiral Bodee took home about a cup.

And the other 8 cups…I took them across the street to Maxine.


%d bloggers like this: