Isaiah 6:8

8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

Monday, April 27, 2015

2015 A-Z April Challenge - W is for Winding Down



Today's letter is W for Winding down.  Our school year ends with graduation on May 20th and 21st and the year is winding down.  The remaining number of days are posted on my board because I got tired of the kids asking every day.  I change the numbers before I leave each day....Winding down.... For many I will not see them from the 15th until graduation because they are exempt from finals....winding down.  Play-off games are on for softball and baseball and kids are leaving school to get to these games.....we are winding down.  There seems to be some form of testing....everyday.....of every week....and if that weren't enough...it seems that I never have a full class.....winding down.  Between field days, play-off games, senioritis, mega drama, college days, senior skip days....assemblies...I find myself rushing frantically around to get in all the material they are supposed to cover.....winding down.  It seems every year....and I have been doing this for over 25 years....starting up....and winding down....take the most out of me.  May 22nd the teachers come to school one more time for inservice....and for some winding down.  Most people think that is when a teacher's job ends.  I promise you....from June to August....I will be working at the school a few days a week...getting ready to start again.  I will attend a couple of conferences this summer to keep my edge....and then I will wait...wait until the next year begins so I can begin the winding down process all over again.  It is in my blood.   I pray that winding down goes smoothly this year and that all my little darlings walk across that stage in their gown and mortar board.,,,then I will truly....Wind down!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

2015 A-Z April Challenge - V is for Victory


The countdown is on and since I was a bit under the weather am running late with my post.  There are only four letters left after today.  My word for today is V is for Victory.  Yesterday our FFA String band boys competed at the district level.  They have been coming in my room each morning since we came back from Christmas break and playing for me.  I join in and sing with them sometimes.  I was really hoping that they would win and they did!  I am so excited for them. 
My Wadley FFA students placed fourth in their quartet division.  They have been practicing forever and they have the sweetest voices.  When we got to the school last night for the Mock Wedding we found out that our baseball team played in a play-off game against Thorsby High School.  The winner had to win two games.  We won them both. 
Victory definitely belonged to RCHS yesterday. Do you think the guys were excited about their victory.  I do!  I was so proud of them. The baseball boys will play again towards the end of the week in the third round of the play-off system.  I would love to see them go all the way and win state!  Softball play-offs begin soon too.  Victory would be sweet. 

Friday, April 24, 2015

2015 April Challenge - U is for Unique!


Wow!  April has really flown and here we are nearing the end of the Alphabet Challenge.  I am always so glad when April rolls around and we begin and then so sad when April ends and I have to wait another year.  Today's letter was a tough one for me.  The letter U did not seem to spark any creative juices straight away...and then it was like a lightening bolt struck me...U is for Unique! Unique isn’t just a word that teachers tell their “special” students they are, it means being different in usually a good way. It is when everyone wears white and one person wears purple. Someone’s unique way of talking. When I was in school I wanted to fit in.  I did not want to stand out....or be unique.  I wanted to fade into the wall.  The older I got....the more I realized that I was unique.  There is no one else out there like me.  I don't dress like everyone else....I don't do what everyone else does....I am myself....and I am unique.  People don't always know how to take me.  My uniqueness comes through singing.  I have a unique way for finding harmony anywhere.  I have a number of unique friends.  Susan has a unique handle on planting things.  She sees plants in ways I do not!  Artsy Amy can see things differently too....she can paint on anything and it look like it should be hanging in a museum.  We all have the ability to be unique and I try to instill that in my students.  You do not have to follow the crowd....choose your own path....be unique.  My mother always encouraged me to be unique.....she asked me once if everyone jumped from a bridge....would I?   Heaven's No!  I was not stupid....I just wanted to fit in.  Several years ago I had a student in one of my classes who had the name, "Precious Unique."  When I asked her about her unusual name she told me that her momma told her she was "precious in the sight of the Lord," "and was a unique child of God."  I loved it!  Even though my name is not Precious Unique....I too am precious in His sight...and a Unique child of God.  So as I head off for work this morning....I am feeling a unique kinda day dawning...and I encourage you all to get out there and strap your unique on. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

2015 A-Z April Challenge - T is for Travel



Today my challenge letter T is for Travel.  I love to travel.  There is something about planning, preparing,  and executing a trip that makes me smile.  I love the whole process. I can honestly boast that I have been to 48 of the 50 states.   Several years ago my cousin, Amanda, and her family and my daughter, Kat and I took a 9000+ mile Pacific Northwest trip.  We went all the way to Vancouver, Canada and down to the Mighty Redwoods...it was an amazing trip.  We spent a night in Gillette, WY and stayed at a lovely place called the Mustang Motel because it was the annual cattle drive and there were no rooms at the inn....any of them.  Our suite had bullet holes in the ceiling, windows, and doors.  I guess we should have known something was wrong when the inn keeper asked if we wanted to see the room first....and if we were paying for an hour?  Kat and I traveled to PEI when she was 15 to see where Lucy Maude Montgomery lived.  She was a huge fan of the Anne of Green Gables series.  We traveled as far as we could up US-1 and then hopped on I-95 when we could not.  My bucket list contains a few more travels such as these.  I want to get some special people together and drive Route 66 - The Mother Road from Illinois to California and of course I want to see Vermont and Alaska.  I think with Alaska it is now Alaska or bust.  I have been to several countries in Europe and still have a few I want to see....of course Moldova is at the top of that list because my daughter is a missionary there.  I also want to see Scotland, Germany, and Switzerland.  Some day my travels will take me there.  My parents were back roads travelers so I have it in my blood.  My dad used to say he was not lost but just exploring.  Jana Stanfield does a song that I like to claim as my mantra.  The lyrics  to I'm Not Lost, I am Exploring are:
If I could look down on this path I walk from somewhere way up high,
I could see the crooked road that I have come.
I walked a mile with sorrow, I walked a mile with joy
and now I'm less afraid of either one.
For every tear I've cried, there's a smile that I have earned,
for every mile I walked there's a lesson I learned.

Chorus
I'm not lost, I am exploring.
Life is an adventure worth enjoying.
Though I may not know where I'm going,
I am not lost, I am exploring.
I am not lost, I am exploring.

Some people choose to live their lives on quiet avenues,
while others find a place in the parade.
Some like me are seekers, we take less travelled roads,
believing we can find a better way.
And though I get discouraged, I won't be turning back
I have joy as my compass and faith as my map.

Chorus

All of us are headed for the same destination,
so why not blaze a trail that's got imagination

Chorus

I am not lost, I am exploring.    
So I want to leave you with this thought....get out there and Travel, take small trips...take big trips....have an adventure and enjoy it!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Wednesday Hodge Podge

Welcome to another edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge. If you're visiting from the A-Z you'll find my post on letter S on this day...but one post down.  If you've answered the questions today add your link by clicking here, then run say hi to your neighbor. Also Hodgepodge links only please! Don't make Joyce have to bring out the wooden spoon.   One quick item of business-Joyce is calling Spring Break in the Hodgepodge next Wednesday, April 29th. She needs a day and think a break now and then helps keep things fresh. We'll resume the week after on May 6th.
Now on with the show-


1. Have you ever had to wear a uniform? If yes, tell us more. Did you love it or hate it?
I wore a uniform for PE from 7th to 12th grade.  They were disgustingly ugly and I hated them.  There was only one place in town you could buy them and the whole process was a nightmare.
 2. April 22nd is Earth Day. What is one thing you do personally to be a good steward of planet Earth.  We pick up litter, we recycle things by using them in other ways, we spend a good bit of time outdoors, I love planting things.  3. Brown rice, quinoa, or couscous...your healthy grain of choice? How often are one of the three on your menu at home? Given a choice between white rice, brown rice, wild rice, and fried rice which would you go for?  Brown rice is my favorite and that's what I would go for. We have brown rice about once a week, couscous occasionally , and quinoa rarely. 
4. In your opinion, who has the best job ever?  I have to agree with Joyce and say Mothers. I have loved this job.  And then doctors, nurses, teachers...jobs where you're making a tangible difference in someone else's life. Maybe not the easiest jobs in the world, nor are they without challenges, but I think the sense of personal satisfaction one feels in helping another makes for the best kind of job.
5. What's a situation in your life currently requiring patience?  The end of the school year and all the numerous things going on in my school life right now.6. Do you live your life around the days of the week?  Yes, I have my school week...and things each night that deal with church.....and then Sunday AM and PM deal with church....Saturdays I guard ferociously.  
 7. In a nod to the A to Z challenge happening around town this month, what 'R word' best describes your April?  Rainy...Rainy....and did I say Rainy?
 8. Insert your own random thought here.  I am using this space to link over to my A-Z Challenge post. We're into the final third of the alphabet so whoohoo!  S is for Southern Sayings.

2015 A-Z April Challenge - S is for Southern Sayings



When I was younger I loved watching the two power women in Gone With The Wind.  I loved their gentle southern speaking and would actually go around mimicking them at school...we all did.  Some of us were better at it than others.  My favorite line was when Scarlet holds up the dirt at Tara and states emphatically that "tomorrow is another day).  I think I have always kind of kept that reasoning in my brain files.  When things go terribly wrong...I always remember this line.  Dixie Carter's character, Julia Sugarbaker, was always one I enjoyed listening to as she made multiple syllables out of a one syllable word....and I am rambling.  Today's letter, S, is for Southern Sayings.  I think I should get two points for this since I am using two S's.  Moving on.....the South is known for it's quaint and humorous expressions....and I have to admit that I fell in love with them from the first day I lived here.  Phrases like, "Bless Her Heart,", "Too big for his britches," "That dog will hunt," "Nervous as a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs," are delightful.  I can think of 100's of them, but I won't.  If you would like to check out some others then try clicking here.  Every region has it's sayings and in my travels I have picked up a few and been totally entertained by many more. I should have been a student of linguistics....I love words and word play.  If you are reading this post today I have a favor to ask....can you think of a phrase that is used in your part of the word?  Will you share it with me in a comment.  "Y'all Come Back Now, Ya Hear!"

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

2015 A-Z April Challenge - Raised in the South, just not THE South



I was born and raised in South Florida.  I do not really sound like anyone.  When I was growing up my neighbors to the right were from Harwich Port, MA, the ones to the left were from upstate New York.  The ones across the street were from the Bronx and Queens...and I sound like I could be from the Midwest somewhere.  When I first moved to Alabama one of the funniest words I heard was "rurnt."  I could not for the life of me understand what it meant.  I finally asked one of my new Alabama friends what on earth this word was referring too...and died laughing when she explained it to me.  You see rurnt means that something is spoiled, not any good, wasted.  An example of its use is:  The milk in the fridge was rurnt.   What a funny word.  It sounds like a pig grunting to me.  In the early nineties I received an NEH fellowship to study Miguel Cervantes in Walla Walla, WA.  I was thrilled...out of 150 applicants I was one of the 20 chosen.  When I was picked up at the Walla Walla Airport the driver was so disappointed when I introduced myself.  He told me I sounded as if I was from Kansas.  They were hoping for a southern drawl....I guess that was rurnt.  Luckily one of the other participants grew up in the Mobile area and had a drawl as thick as could be.  It all worked out.  Before I got my degree in High School education I substituted in any grade.  The children had a problem with my pronunciation of the word "on".   They owned the word when they said it....and I didn't.  People in the community I lived in used to invite me to their events....to talk....not speak...not give my witness....just talk....they loved laughing at the way I pronounced words.  I don't say y'all....I say you guys.  I am a southerner.  I was born and raised in the South.  So today my R is for Raised in the South, just not the RIGHT South.