Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A Liar with a Good Excuse

It's true; I lied. Remember forever ago when I promised to post pictures of my teacher outfits? Clearly that never happened, but I promise I have several good reasons.
1. I look best at the start of the day before my clothes wrinkle...which also happens to be the time of day I don't have a photographer.
2. I took a nap after work every day last week.
3. Every day has been a bad hair day. I know. Crazy.

Please forgive me for being a liar. Thank you!

Subject change: hot yoga! Today I was thinking to myself, "Stephanie, you need to stop napping and start working out again." I looked on my gym's website and was unimpressed by the class selection, and then it hit me: hot yoga! That's what I feel like doing! That's the stretch I need to relieve teacher-neck (a chronically sore neck from looking down at books, papers, and tiny 7th graders)! I decided to call my favorite Hot Yoga studio just to see if there were any specials not listed online. Sure enough, when I explained my situation to the owner, she offered me a discounted monthly rate since I'm a teacher! So starting today, I'm back in the game. Maybe I'll even post an outfit this week to celebrate!

Until next time!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Almost Ready!

This week was in-service at school. For those of you who don't speak teacher, in-service is all the training, orientation, grade level meetings, and classroom preparation that goes on before students arrive. For me, this time also included hunting down curriculum, teacher editions, and textbooks I'll be needing. My most memorable moment this week was coming in Thursday morning and finding a HUGE pile of papers, binders, and about 8 boxes of books on my formerly empty table. Two hours and ten sneezes later, I had the dusty pile neatly organized in my storage closet. Good times.

I ended up doing everything except lesson plans this week, so that's how I spent my Saturday. I'm pleased to say that after 4 hours of typing, flipping pages, and using Google, I am finally set for Monday with ice breakers, lesson plans, rules and procedures. The fun part is that I won't actually know my class schedule until I arrive at school on Monday. Tomorrow I plan on taking pictures of my outfits for this week, but for now I'd like to share a couple pictures from my in-service experience. Enjoy!

This first picture is the curriculum someone dropped on my table while I was away. Please keep in mind that these are 3-inch binders busting open. What a surprise!

Next we have a sign that I made for my policies. I hate coming up with rules and thought this was cute and pretty much on target with what I want my children to understand.

Bet you can't guess what this next picture is...

That's all I've got for now!
Time to relax with some iced tea and Say Yes to the Dress. #guiltypleasure.
Until tomorrow,

Friday, August 9, 2013

Personal Health and Fitness

Although this post isn't about fashion, I feel like I should tell you that I'm currently wearing ballet flats and socks. Don't worry, I agree with you that this is not okay! I'm hoping that by following this handy tip I found on Pinterest (break in new ballet flats with socks and a hair dryer) that when I wear these shoes to school, I won't come back with bloody feet.

The thing I really want to talk about today is health and fitness. All through college I was told that the first year of teaching is the hardest because I would be sick all the time. Whenever I heard this I would want to roll my eyes because I was one of the healthiest people I knew! I never got sick! I never missed work! I would be the exception. Well, I was wrong. From December to June I was sick 70% of the time. If it wasn't a cold, it was strep. If it wasn't strep, I had allergies. And if you think about it, the reason is pretty clear. If you take an adult, even a healthy, young adult, and put her in a classroom with germy 7th graders, stale air, no sunlight, and limited access to water or bathroom breaks, obviously you'll end up with a sickly shell of a woman. Okay, that's a bit dramatic, but I really was sickly.

This week, I have been paying special attention to my health. I'm always mindful of my nutrition and exercise, but it's a lot easier to be that way during the summer when my schedule is governed by my extremely part-time job. Once school begins again, starting with in-service time next week, I will have to be much more diligent about making time to work out and eat right.

This week I have gone a little out of my comfort zone to research different workouts and find which will work for me. I lifted with my boyfriend and again with my brothers, I ran and did pilates, and I took a hot yoga class. I love lifting, but once I'm back on my teacher schedule, my gym buddies and I won't be able to work out together. So, in addition to being conscious about what I'm eating, I am counting on these three steps to keep me in work and out of the doctor's office.

1. Juicing
I have a Breville Juice Fountain which I received as a graduation gift (thanks mom!) and I couldn't be more thrilled with it! Juicing is a tasty way to fill your body with more essential vitamins and nutrients, but juicing can also be expensive and time consuming. My secret to getting the most out of juicing is to wash and prepare the fruits and vegetables ahead of time. Now, instead of needing to wash and cut everything, juice, and clean the machine (a 10-15 minutes process for all), I now reach into the fridge and pull out my prepared ingredients, making this a quicker task! Since I started doing this I have been juicing twice as often! Maybe my next post will be yummy juice recipes.

2. Tea
My mom introduced me to Maté tea and she swears by it! My mom honestly never gets sick and she's convinced that this tea is the reason why. It contains caffeine which is a bonus for me, but it also has antioxidants, amino acids, vitamins, and other wonderful things. Read about it here while you enjoy a glass!

3. Relaxing Exercise
Don't let my third point fool you; I'm not talking about taking a stroll once a week. When I am stressed, I find that going for a run outdoors or taking a hot yoga class can really zap calories while giving me somewhere to channel my energy.

If you have a health or fitness idea that you'd like to share, please comment below! I love to hear what other people do to stay in shape and feeling great!

Until next time!


Thursday, August 1, 2013

And so it begins...

The first thing you should know about me is I'm a list-maker. I begin almost every day with a list. That list could be a schedule including details from when I intend to wake up and eat breakfast to a list of goals for that particular day. This blog is to help me get away from that list from time to time.

Today's list was pretty detailed because August 1st is a wake-up call; hey you (it says), summer is almost over. To another adult, this might mean different traffic patterns and the ability to go to the store without seeing kids during the day. To me, a teacher, this means the same thing it did as a student: goodbye summer break! It also means that I need to start hammering out tangible plans for this school year.

This isn't really my first year teaching, but it is my first full year of teaching. I graduated in December with my BS in English Education and was immediately hired into a 7th grade intensive reading position. I took that on with much gusto and little idea of what I was doing. With lots of support, I was able to pick up the curriculum and survive that first year. However, I want this year to be completely different. I'd really like to start off with a classroom management plan in place and a good idea of what I'm doing rather than jumping in unprepared like I had to last time. That is why my list centered around "teacher work" today.

Let me just say that Pinterest is amazing. Whoever thought that up is clearly a genius! Pinterest is definitely what got me interested in fashion, simple yet gorgeous weddings, intricate hair styles, and now, teaching resources! Tomorrow's to-do list will include awesome projects like a Common Core Standard folder system, an absentee system, my supply table organization plan, and a few other classroom management ideas. For links to this cool stuff, check out my pinterest page here.

So, what can you expect from this blog? At first, probably just a journal of my first few days of school. After that, I'd really like to make this an encouragement by showing how I manage my time to be an effective teacher, fitness/ health enthusiast, fashion participator, and whatever else I choose to be. I want to hear your stories, interact with you, and hopefully provide a little comic relief from time to time. If you're a teacher and you have awesome ideas and resources, please share!

Thanks for reading! We'll talk again soon.