12

Twelve is…

one part little boy and one part young man.

a glimpse into what kind of a man you will be.

kind and caring and compassionate.

full of energy and thoughts and ideas.

one part sports fanatic and one part cake decorator.

getting good grades even though you sometimes forget where you put your homework.

playing basketball with your Mom one day and playing Black Ops with Dad the next.

tormenting your little brother who worships the ground you walk on one minute yet laughing and hanging out the next.

handsome and athletic and wears nothing but Under Armor and soccer jerseys.

starting to show an interest in girls but not too much. Just right.

funny and sweet and thoughtful.

loving soccer and basketball.

is awesome.

is perfection in your Mom’s eyes.

is loved.

Happy Birthday to the best son a Mom could ever ask for.

Happy This Week

Manicure baby! I asked her for something springy and fun. Did she deliver or what?

Therapy! I love my therapist. She is truly amazing. I’m so thankful to have her in my life!

Five after school games of basketball with my soon-to-be-12-year-old son. We both won two and then had a tiebreaker…which he won. Dang it!

NCAA March Madness “tailgate” party in my room for lunch at school to watch OSU. It was so fun! The Buckeyes lost but it was still fun.

I love nothing more than when Matthew runs up to me for one more hug or one more kiss.

Olivia read me a book yesterday! She giggled the whole way through as if to say “I can’t believe I’m reading my Mom a book!”

Olivia told her teacher we were “going overseas” for spring break but we were letting her stay home alone. Isn’t she a riot? “Overseas”? Where does she get these ideas??

Her new thing is also to say she’s pregnant or ask others if they’re pregnant. It’s really funny. Until she asks a stranger who may be on the heavy side. Then no one will be laughing!

My girls at school had Divergent spirit week this week and asked me to participate since I’m a fan of the book too. We dressed in the faction colors all week! Today is Dauntless!

My 16-year-old niece and I are going to see Divergent together on Sunday. I never get to spend time with just her…I’m SO excited. I hope she is too!

Gabe’s birthday is Monday and we are celebrating on Saturday. He’s SOOO excited for his birthday and I’m excited to put on a celebration for him!

Matt and I are going on a date tonight! We’re trying a new restaurant and then going to the French exhibit at the art museum. Ooh-la-la!!!

What made you happy this week?

Something New to Love

***Linking up with MamaKat this week: 4.) Something new you’re loving.***

(To all my loyal readers, I’m so sorry I haven’t been posting very much. I’m absolutely drowning over here. I’m shooting for 2-3 times a week until things let up. Thanks for sticking with me!)

I love TV and I’m not ashamed to admit it. Always have, always will. I figure the amount of books I read makes up for my TV and movie watching habits. Right?

I’m in L-O-V-E with these new shows.

Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show. Are you watching him? He’s magic. He’s adorable, hilarious and very down-to-earth and classy. His skits are perfection and he interviews the guests like they’re just hanging out. I love, love, love him and his new show!

The Goldbergs. Why aren’t you watching this show??? Especially if you were born in the late 70′s or early 80′s, you will appreciate the nostalgia in this show. Wendi Mclendon-Covey as the mom is THE BEST. Her hair, the way she dresses and talks, the way she mothers. It’s just wonderful. The kids are funny, the dad is a riot and the references to 80′s stuff is fun too.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine. This show slays me! I’ve always been an Andy Samberg fan but this whole crew is hysterical. The jokes are really witty and the characters are all really funny in their own way. Andre Braugher is hysterical as the chief!

The Following. Ok, so it’s not new. I watched it last season too…but damn, it’s so good! Very scary and creepy and intriguing. I love Kevin Bacon.

The Americans. I watched the pilot last year and then we got rid of cable and I forgot about it. Well I’m catching up on Amazon Prime now and it’s awesome. Even though Keri Russell does NOT in any way, shape or form resemble anyone I remember from the 80′s, I still enjoy the show. You kind of forget how tense it was between the U.S. and Russia not so long ago…and the idea of spies is always fascinating. It reminds me a little bit of Alias. But more believable.

House of Cards. I know, I’m late to this party. I’m catching up on season one. I’ve always thought Kevin Spacey was a phenomenal actor and I really like him in this politician role. I’m only on episode four but I really like it.

What do you watch? Do you love any of these shows too?

Happy This Week

I joined Twitter with a teacher account this week and my kids went crazy. They were so excited. It made my week! There’s a quote that says something about kids won’t learn until they learn how much you care and I really believe that. I’m always looking for ways to connect with my kids and show them they I care about them.

Look at these tweets from my kids…this is just a sample of why I LOVE my job. (Selfies were taken BEFORE class started, FYI.)

This one cracks me up…I was walking over to the selfie when she took it.

belen tweet

tweet 2

tweet 3

tweet

My in-laws moved in with us this week while their house is being built. My MIL loves to clean, do laundry and make dinner. It’s awesome!!!

We had two snow days this week. Yes, you read that right. It’s the middle of March and we had a huge ice/snow storm. I was able to get caught up and a little ahead which was nice.

Even though I hate losing an hour for the time change, I love that it’s still light out at 8:00 p.m. We even got out and played basketball this week. You know, when it was 40 and sunny the day before the snowstorm.

I took a nap yesterday. I never take naps. It was awesome.

We had a lull in sports this week. We only had one night of soccer and one night of Scouts. It was nice to have a break!

Last weekend Matthew competed in Pinewood Derby district for cub scouts. He earned 5th place which is wonderful. But he was devastated. They go by average time over 5 races and he lost by 0.015 seconds! Can you believe that? He won each of his heats so he thought he won…his little disappointed face broke my heart. But we went out to dinner and he had a sleepover and all was forgotten.

What made you happy this week?

Get Lucky

***Linking up with MamaKat today: Talk about a time you got lucky.***

It’s 10 o’clock on a weekday. We’re spent, exhausted, tapped out, d-o-n-e. We’ve packed lunches, made breakfast, waited for buses, worked all day, shuttled to pre-school and back, taught 300 elementary kids P.E., taught 120 8th graders math, taken back library books, ran to the post office, made phone calls, remembered birthdays, scheduled appointments, shuffled kids to practices where we are the coach, tutored, practiced trombone, made lunch, made dinner, cleaned up, thrown in laundry, worked out, played with the kids, did homework, gave kids baths, read books and put them to bed. We’ve finished our pre-bed routine of making coffee for the next morning, packing more lunches, throwing in more laundry, checking email, writing blog posts and now it’s our time.

But we’re tired. Oh so tired. And spent.

But it’s there. The heat. The desire. The need.

We need that contact. That touch. We need that connection. We need to remember that we’re still WE and not just for them. We want it, we need it, we love it…after all these years and all of this tiredness. It’s there…and we are lucky to have it.

Story of My Life

It can take a lifetime, a life of many years, to accept the incongruity of things: that a small moment can sit side by side with a big one, and become part of the same.

— Rachel Joyce

When things get really crazy and hectic, as they have been since the beginning of February, and I start to hyperventilate and have anxiety attacks in regards that all is on my shoulders, I have to force myself to stop and focus on the story of my life. If I had two months to live, what would be my focus, what would I do, what wouldn’t I do, what would be important?

Sometimes I feel as though I have to change the world. Everyone needs to know about Olivia, her Cri du Chat and how having a child with special needs doesn’t have to ruin your life. I need to write a book, stop the R-word, be the best teacher/mother/wife/friend/daughter/sister in the whole world or else. Then I remember what’s important…what is the real and true story of my life.

It’s having friends over on a Friday night, sitting in a circle, playing Cards Against Humanity, drinking, eating pizza and laughing in our pjs and sweats feeling totally comfortable in each other’s presence. It’s realizing how lucky I am to have so many wonderful friends in my life, no matter how rare it is that we all get together. I know they’re there.

It’s having Olivia practically jump into my arms at the end of the day because she’s so happy to see me. She bursts into my arms, excited to show me the picture she colored in art class today, to tell me about the food they cooked in cooking class, the song she sang in choir.

It’s a walk with the dogs and Matthew on a Tuesday afternoon talking about how the human race started. He’s a deep thinker, my Matthew, and an innocent question of “where did the first human come from?” turned into an hour-long discussion on evolution and religion and watching a documentary together to help explain it all. It’s realizing that even though he’s only 8, his soul is much older and evolved than we imagine. It’s seeing the adult he’s going to be and knowing he’ll be amazing.

It’s chatting with Gabe about soccer, basketball, school, teachers, baking, cake decorating, friends, grades, college, girls or whatever else he’s willing to share with me. I soak it all up and take in each morsel he’s willing to give. I try not to overplay my hand so he will want to share again. Teenagers are finicky you know. It’s Gabe asking me to play basketball after school and laying in bed watching Walking Dead together on a Sunday night.

It’s a rare hour alone with Matt where we can catch up on the day, veg out together, have a meal together, laugh about the kids or have deep conversations about what’s important to us. It’s sitting across the table at breakfast, eating granola and sipping coffee, and staring at his gorgeous face realizing for the millionth time I’m the luckiest wife around.

It’s the smell of Olivia’s hair and the way she laughs and her gorgeous smile and her constant requests for me to “do again”.

It’s Gabe’s dimples, his witty sense of humor, how I’m the first one he talks to about everything, the way he makes sure we say goodnight even if I’m not allowed to tuck him in anymore.

It’s Matthew’s sweet face, his ever-growing long limbs, his kisses and hugs and thoughtfulness. He tells me he’s lucky that I’m his Mom and I feel as though my life is complete.

It’s the smell of Matt’s cologne, the weight of his hugs, the love that radiates off of him towards me and the kids.

It’s all of these tiny yet huge amazing and precious moments that make the story of my life. And life is so much better and happier when I can stop and remember this very thing.

Happy This Week

A manicure on a Sunday afternoon…yes, please!

I had friends over last Friday night and we had a blast. Sometimes you just need girl time!

New TV this week…finally! It seemed like forever since Grey’s and Modern Family and The Middle was on!

Walking Dead…Daryl’s story last Sunday. As if I needed a reason to love him more.

I didn’t realize until Thursday that my grad school was on Spring Break this week…which means I have an extra week to get my homework done. Thank goodness.

Matthew and Olivia and I have been reading Harry Potter every night. I’ve missed it and I’m glad I made myself get back to it. They are loving it. I am too. :)

Therapy…sigh of relief. My therapist is amazing. I would love to be friends with her in real life. Is that allowed? Probably not. She’s awesome.

My friend teaches art to Gabe and Olivia. She has her planning period right after she has Olivia and she’ll send me pictures or texts of funny things she says. It makes my day! I love when others love my girl and get how awesome she is.

Two boys in my class made up a “Math Rocks” handshake. How fun is that? One of them also left me a note on my board that said “I cry when I’m not in math class”. These little things make my day.

What made you happy this week?

Pinterest Inspired

***Linking up with Mamakat today: 1.) Pinterest inspired!***

Here are some of my latest favorite Pinterest finds…and you thought I’d be sick of Pinterest by now!

Follow me on Pinterest!

Reeeeaaaallllyyyy need…

beach

Me…

book quote

Working on it…

butt

For my students…they love my stupid puns…

corny joke

My plan should Walking Dead ever occur…

daryl

Trying to follow 95% of the time…

food

Obsessed…

jimmy

Can’t wait…

My mani this week…
mani

Amen…

mean people

For Olivia…

minion

When I least expect it…

sadness

Waaaaannnnnttttt…

shoes

Olivia MUST have this by Spring…

soccer shirt for liv

Maybe…

tattoos

Next on my list…

the bear book

And finally…love…

love

Olivia’s 13th

Olivia had a wonderful birthday. We celebrated with family with a Frozen theme. She dove into her presents before everyone even took off their coats. She couldn’t wait to see what new “friends” were in those bags and boxes. After that, we enjoyed a Mexican fiesta followed by the gorgeous cake made by my sister. You’ll notice my sister in all of the candle pictures trying desperately to keep Olivia from sticking her hands in it! Olivia declared it the best birthday ever. Indeed!

banner Collage

cups Collage

elsaanna Collage

presents Collage

signs Collage

sing Collage

snowflake Collage

Watch Olivia here!

Happy This Week

A great haircut! Is there anything better?

Gabe played some awesome soccer this week. I just love watching him play.

Olivia did great at her circle of friends group after school on Monday. I’m always so proud of her!

Matthew in his cub scout uniform makes my heart go pit-pat. He’s the cutest.

My friend at work gave me a cover for my keyboard on my laptop and it’s bright red. It makes me happy every time I look at my computer.

I’m having friends over tonight…can’t wait to hang in our pjs with my buddies. We’re going to play games, eat pizza and drink wine. Sounds good, doesn’t it?

My students have been working really hard for months on our musical. Last night a group of teachers went out to dinner and then to the musical. The kids did soooo great! It was like watching a high school production…and a really good one at that! I love seeing my students do things they love outside of the classroom. It’s neat to see a different side of them.

I received three really nice emails from parents this week. If you haven’t lately, thank a teacher! It makes their day.

Every day, when my students walk in, I have a puzzle or youtube video or something on the board for them to do (usually non-math related). They love wuzzles so I use them a lot. I posted this one this week. Take a look at the bottom right.

wuzzle5

The answer is “count the ways”. Last period, this super sweet and innocent girl raises her hand and guesses…

Three way?

Everyone starts laughing, I’m dying, and she looks around and says “What?? What is it??” and someone says “Go home and ask your Mom!” It was hilarious. But then I started worrying about her going home and saying to her Mom “Today in math class…”

I will remember that forever.

What made you happy this week?