Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Estrogen Party

I am writing on here to avoid documenting my SpEd accommodations for school. I might put a movie on later while I do those.

It's a chill day here. Relaxing, drinking tea and eating Terry's chocolate orange while we work on our laptops and watch movies. Austin was sweet to let me stay in Dallas with my family for a few extra days. He left to go back to Houston to work and so I've been able to spend some more quality time with my parents and sisters here. Carolyn and I are going to go to College Station tomorrow morning and then Austin is going to come pick me up.

Since I've been husband-less for the past few days, we decided to take advantage of the testosterone-free environment and have a sleepover. My oldest and dearest friends came over to the house and we had so much fun making homemade pizzas, wassail, pumpkin pancakes and pumpkin maple syrup. My friend Sarah is a real-life chef in Dallas... so... she knows how to cook things that taste amazing. We watched Little Women, our favorite movie when we were young, and tried to catch up on months of separation.

Anna and I have known each other since we were 2. We apparently met in the church nursery... but we have no way of confirming that story. All I know is that I don't remember not knowing her. We grew up going to different schools and living in different cities, but we got to me roommates in college for a few years.

Sarah was my babysitter when I was little (and also Anna's) and is now a wonderful friend of mine. She would inspire us to put on plays and musicals for my parents whenever they would return home. She allowed our imaginations to run wild and free.

When I moved to England, I would come back to Texas twice a year to visit Anna and Sarah. We had sleepovers and did wild and crazy things when we were together. :)

We liked ballet.

Roomies in college

At my wedding last January

At our sleepover

Thursday, December 24, 2009

I Wanna Wash My Hands, My Face and Hair With Snow!

So guess what? Denton is going to have a white Christmas this year! It started snowing today at lunch time and didn't stop until a few minutes ago.

Everything is white.




I love it!

We tried driving to Denton Bible's Christmas Eve service, but the roads were so ridiculous that they ended up canceling it and making everyone go home as soon as they could. We drove at 20 mph for the entire journey home... the roads were completely frozen and the snow was STILL falling - hard! Someone actually rear-ended my parents since everything was so slippery. Nothing serious, though.

I'll try to take some pictures tomorrow morning of my parents' house in the snow. It's just gorgeous!

This year, Austin and I are spending Christmas with my family in Denton (as if you couldn't figure that out). We drove here yesterday and have enjoyed spending time with my sisters, parents and grandpa.

I love being home. Everything feels relaxed and cozy. I love our giant couch that takes up the entire living room. My entire family can sit on it at the same time.

I love watching movies with my family and playing games with my sisters.

I love having a big family! Having four sisters is so much fun.

Well, to catch you up on the past few weeks:

The first half of the school year came and went. I love my students even if they drive me crazy sometimes! Oh, and finals week is the best part of the year! It's so wonderful to have complete quiet. I was able to fully plan the first three weeks of the next quarter. Oh, it feels good.

Austin and I have been looking for houses on and off. We'd like to find a house in the next few months, but we'll see how that goes. The area we're looking is pretty popular and so it's hard to find a lot of quality houses in our price range... but we're trying!

Our first anniversary is coming up in about 2 1/2 weeks. It's hard to believe that Austin and I have been married for a year! Craziness. I'm not sure how we're going to celebrate. We may or may not have a new niece by that time... Sadie is supposed to be due around the first week of January! I can't wait!

Ok It's really hard to write and watch a movie (It's a Wonderful Life) at the same time... so I'll have to write again later.

Before I post, I wanted to include something that was written inside a Christmas card that my family got. A family friend wrote it and I just loved her words:

"This Christmas may you rest in the deep satisfaction that because you have Him you have everything."

I just love that.

I am richly blessed.

Christ is everything.

Be blessed this weekend!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Tweet Tweet

I tweet
You tweet
We all tweet

Well, I'm not really sure why.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


God is so good to me.

Last week was one of the longest and hardest weeks I have had in a very long time. I was incredibly discouraged almost every day and really feeling the pressure of my job. I always seem to have so much to do, yet I am not the kind of person that can stay up all hours of the night and function on less than 8 hours of sleep.

I think the correct description of my current state would be "burnt out".

Yet God is faithful and good.

My wonderful husband has been amazing this past week. He cooked dinner for us every night and rubbed my feet/back/neck when they really hurt. He helps me grade if he can and then does other tedious jobs for me. Today he cleaned the entire apartment while I wrote lesson plans. He never complains, but serves me and loves me. I just love that God has blessed me with him!

Teaching is hard. I won't lie. I am challenged every day to love my students and not whine or complain about anything I am supposed to do. Most of the time I feel completely overwhelmed but the Lord sustains me.

Monday was a particulary stressful trial. I called Carolyn on the way home because I knew she would listen as I talked and then provide me with much-needed encouragement. That night, at 2 in the morning, I got the longest text message in the world:

"I am praying that as you wake up this morning that you put your hope in Christ to affirm you and uphold you emotionally and spiritually and that you would acknowledge that He supplies you from His own power with strength to endure with patience. I am convinced that the verse I quoted is of the very heartbeat of our Daddy God who cares so much more about our dependency on Him and surrender to Him than about giving us the answers we plead for. Wake up this morning and thank Him first for this opportunity to see His power, to know more of His providence and to worship Him despite what it seems to be costing you. Before you open the door to your classroom just present your requests to Him, rest in His peace and say, “Unless You build the house, its builders labor in vain (Ps. 127). Jesus, I love You. This is for You, Love.” I am thanking Him for having already answered you. Remember that He is a God who calls us His dearly loved children (Eph. 5), who delivers us from our fears (Ps. 34) and who created the Earth and the land (Jonah). So go be a testimony to the joy and hope that Jesus gives despite the weight of the world. I love you and I am praying for you. Your Love has got you. And He is so pleased with you and wants you to know that. :)"

Later that evening I received a second message from her:

"One of the things that God has taught me in the past couple of years is that whenever I am struggling in one way or another or in a place of attack or sin, that I am just one small stone of a temple and that what I am undergoing is for the building up of the whole body, not just my own sanctification. Most of the time, what God allows me to experience is for the purpose of intercession. I may not know who it is that I am praying for, but I am reminded that I have a brother or sister somewhere who needs prayer for the same thing I am dealing with and so I pray for them instead of for myself. There is someone God wants you to be praying for while you are experiencing this discouragement. Someone is experiencing the same things."

Did I not tell you that God is good? I love my sister! I hope you don't mind that I posted this, Carolyn. I think others will be blessed by your words.

Tonight I am tired and I have a lot ahead of me this week. Please pray that I will rest in the Lord and rely on Him for strength. :)


Sunday, October 11, 2009

I Love Thursdays

Writing on here is like talking to a long lost friend.

I miss you, friend.

Life has been filled with school, 8th graders, dead car batteries, trips to College Station and wonderful conversations with my girls.

My Thursday Girls.

Every Thursday, I get to breathe, get to pray for others, and get to share ideas and life.

Thursdays are like an almost-the-end-of-the-week pick me up. Eight or so of us girls meet downtown and bond over lattes and bagels with cream cheese. We leave when it's dark knowing that we are loved and prayed for.

We started off our group as four girls who had been led to Houston but had never lived here before. We felt alone as we began our next big stage(s) of life: new jobs (and marriage, for some o us). We prayed for God to bless our group and God gave us big visions and dreams for our little meetings on Thursday nights.

Since February, we have more than doubled in size and continue to grow almost every week. The way that God has woven our lives together is really quite incredible. We challenge each other, encourage each other and devote time to one another in prayer as we desire to live lives that are pleasing to God.

I love Thursdays. If you are a girl who lives in Houston and you're looking for some friends, feel free to email me and I can give you details of the group. We'd love to have you.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday Night Break

I guess it's been a pretty eventful week. I've been crazy busy and barely had any time for rest.

Friday was going to be a wonderfully relaxing day where I barely had to use any energy, but that changed once I found out that I had a flat tire after arriving at school. It was flat flat. I spent the day trying to figure out exactly how I was going to get home since Austin had five appointments that day. I thought I would be able to get someone to come change it while I was teaching, but apparently no one does that. Austin ended up being able to come with one of his colleagues after school to change the tire. Unfortunately, that meant that I left school at seven pm. On a Friday.

I've been pretty lucky though, with cars. I've never been pulled over, gotten a ticket of any sort, been in a wreck, or had any sort of emergency happen while driving. I should count myself blessed!

Saturday made up for the fact that Friday was pretty exhausting. Austin and I had breakfast at Buffalo Grille (yum) and then spent the morning browsing around Cactus Records. Austin is pretty retro - we have a record player in our living room. No CD player, radio or iPod player.... just a record player. I would say that most of our "entertainment" money is spent on music and movies. We love going to Half Price Books or pawn shops and looking for records or CDs. Austin normally buys records, and I buy CDs. Austin suggested that we go to Cactus Records to look for a "modern" record for me. I don't get excited about classic rock, so the only kind of stuff I listen to on record is either Frank Sinatra or musical soundtracks.

Cactus Records has a lot of new artists' music on record. However, the only things that I found that I liked were some Coldplay albums that I already had on CD and then a giant compilation of John Mayer live performances. That's what I really wanted - it had 4 records full of my favorite John Mayer songs. But the collection was $41 so we decided against it.

Instead, I left the store with Mat Kearney's new CD. I found it used for half the price that you'd normally find it! :-)

We spent the rest of the day at the Galleria, drinking the tea samples from Teavana and trying to find Austin some new jeans. No other guy on the planet seems to be his size - tall and skinny. Apparently if you're tall, you're fat, and if you're skinny, you're short. You can't be both according to Macy's.

Today I've been working on school stuff all afternoon. It never stops! I should probably keep going since I'd like to be in bed in an hour.

Goodnight friends!

Monday, September 07, 2009

Every Weekend Should Be Three Days Long!

Yahoo Labor Day!

I have enjoyed it immensely. I went with Austin, his parents, and his sister and brother-in-law to the Farm for the weekend. It was great to relax and enjoy sleeping and hanging out. I probably ate too much food but it was wonderful to have time away.

Some exciting news: Kristin, Austin's sister, is going to have a baby and she just found out the gender of the baby on Thursday! She's going to have a girl! I'm excited because girls are all I know. It's going to be great being an aunt. Austin and I say that it's a practice run before we have our own children. ;-)

So I've taught for two weeks already. It's flying by! My kids are pretty great for the most part. I have four amazing periods and two periods that are on the challenging side. I just reorganized the seating charts so hopefully things will be better from now on! The only bad thing right now is that this weekend I started feeling a little under the weather. I'm achey and have a really stuffed up nose. I've been using my sinus rinse since I started feeling bad and taking Airborne like nobody's business, so hopefully I can kick it in the butt soon. I hate feeling sick!

Oh, one more thing to make the sick thing worse - Austin and I got home this evening and discovered that our water doesn't work. We asked our neighbors if they were having the same problem and they said they didn't have water either. Fun, fun. If we don't have water in the morning I will NOT be a happy camper.

Right now, we can't even flush the toilet.

Or wash our hands.


Well, I need to go finish getting ready for this week. I'm going to bed early tonight!


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The First Two Days

Since I have a spare minute or two, I'll update you guys on my first two days of school!

Yesterday went really well. I met my precious kiddos (did I mention that I LOVE middle school students??) and they are amazing. I have one class that will be a challenge because I have something like 24 boys and 6 girls. They won't quit talking! I have some quiet classes and some classes that are going to be a blast.

It's going to be a good year.

Last night was not as fun as the day, however. I got home with a migraine and was exhausted from not sleeping well and waking up at 5 am. I still had a lot to do and I was overwhelmed. Luckily, I am married to a wonderful man who loves to help me! He did so much work for me last night and I didn't break down in tears like I thought I would. He even brought me some pretty purple flowers and a bottle of blush wine. :-)

Today went well also. It was more like a regular day so we went over procedures and rules of the classroom. I don't like talking for 40 minutes but it was necessary to get everything done.

The best part of my day was receiving an email from an angry parent saying that she wanted to have a conference with me, her daughter and the principal. Her daughter asked to use her cell phone at the end of class to tell her mom that her bus was late. I said no, and apparently that was completely unacceptable. After I got the email I immediately looked up cell phone use in the middle school handbook and I was relieved. Sure enough, it says students cannot use cell phones on campus, even to inform parents of late buses. It's even in bold and underlined.

The principal replied so I wouldn't have to.


I was surprised that a parent would get so upset about that. The student is the sweetest girl ever and didn't even complain or whine when I told her "no".


Tomorrow we start "real school". Yay for science safety training!

I also get to meet with my mentor to let her know how the last two days went.

So far, so good.

And now it's time to plan for tomorrow.


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Tomorrow my first day of school!

I think I am as ready as I can be. I can't believe it's finally here.

Please pray for me! I will probably be nervous.


Friday, August 21, 2009

School is... Around the Corner

"Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address."

Name that movie. There's a clue in my post title. Gotta be one of my favorite movie lines ever. I really want to make a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils just to have one to look at. I imagine a bouquet of pencils to look something like this (just no cup and all sharp pointy ends facing up):

However, this is much prettier:



If you haven't been able to tell by the fact I've been missing from the blog world for weeks, my life is crazy.

I just spent two weeks going to teacher trainings every day. There's nothing more exhausting than sitting in a chair for 6 1/2 hours every day. I honestly think I've gained weight from it (None of my pants fit, anyways... I want something to blame. No, I'm not pregnant.).

I left my school today feeling pretty prepared for next week. My room looks great, if I do say so myself! It's big and beautiful and has lots of bright colors in it. I wanted it to be a place that felt fun and exciting, and I think I got there. It is so surreal to think that my room will be filled with wonderful 8th graders in just three short days.

My team is great so far. I have been bonding with several teachers and my school is finally beginning to feel like home. Last semester was... horrible, really. I remember feeling so lost and not "with it". My students were terrible and I felt like a failure as a teacher. I really hope that this year will be better. I have had quite a few people tell me that this year is going to be a great year. You know, it is really nice to hear that from people!

I am so glad that I have a super awesome mentor. She is the department head and I knew her last semester. She is so helpful and I know that I am really blessed to have her as a mentor. Plus, she's an Aggie. :-)

Really, I never expected to feel like this just days away from starting my first real teaching job. Over the summer I was a nervous wreck. I told my girls group to pray for me and so for weeks they have been praying that I would have peace. One of the girls told me a while back to meditate on the fact that God is always present with me and that I am not alone. I just love that. I can tell you that I am so comfortably chill right now as a result of that meditation. I don't feel alone and I don't feel stressed. I have so much peace right now and it is amazing! I'm not even completely prepared and I feel great!

Today I was walking down the hallway after visiting another new teacher (I just know we're going to bond), I thought about how blessed I am. I wasn't 100% sure that I was going to like it at my school, but I still trusted God. I didn't want to teach 8th grade science, but I still trusted God. Now, I am grateful that I don't know what's ahead and He does! I have an amazing new school to teach at, a wonderful group of teachers to learn from and get help from, and I'm really excited about teaching 8th grade science. TAKS scores were not great last year and so I see it as a challenge to bring up those grades.

Thank you, Lord, for everything. :-)

So I promise that this was going to be longer than this. My brain is exhausted from working for 9 hours straight today.

At least I got free lunch today.

And a $150 gift certificate to the teacher store.



Monday, August 17, 2009

I Swear,

I have very good intentions of writing on here soon.

I check this page every day and think about how I want to write.

I have lots to write about.

Just not much time.

But soon.


Monday, July 13, 2009

Mmm, Science Fiction.

One of the things about getting married is that you do things that your spouse likes to do. One thing Austin enjoys is watching sci fi movies. He enjoys this a lot. I had the privilege of watching all the Star Wars movies with him and now I'm watching the Star Trek movies (starting with #2 because apparently the first one was pretty crappy). I'll be honest though - I don't really get into this stuff. I think most of them are kinda corny. I did watch the new Star Trek movie with him and I liked that, mostly because the special effects were up-to-date. Still, I love to watch these movies because Austin loves them. :)

So today I spent nine hours with two children: a 9-month-old and an 11-month old. Fun times. I absolutely love babies and the crazy screaming/crying/pooping does not stress me out, but having two babies do that at the same time is slightly overwhelming. They were not siblings (obviously) so there was only one of everything and that was difficult, especially since the 11-month-old is a toy thief. Nap time was super fun because 9-month old refused to sleep in her crib (she wanted to be held) and 11-month-old cried for 20 minutes before falling asleep. I have these kids for the next two days and I have some new and different strategies cooked up in my mind...

Well, this whole blogging thing is keeping me from watching the movie, so I'm out.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

The Slate Has Evolved...

I have been doing a lot of comparison shopping for my teaching supplies. As it turns out (and I predicted this), the teacher supply store prices are insane. I am not going to pay over two dollars for a single Expo dry erase marker.

Right now, Walmart is the place to buy some of the basics. Their glue sticks are 25 cents and you get two in a package. I spent $3.75 for 30 glue sticks, and you can buy the exact same thing at Office Depot for $13.99. Give me a break! You can also get Crayola colored pencils (12) for a buck. For those of you interested, Big Lots is the place to buy scissors - you get a pair of those antibacterial ones for a dollar, and they aren't the kiddie ones. I think a 14-year-old can be trusted with normal scissors.

I went to Hobby Lobby also and found a little gem in the clearance section. I had seen this new invention on the Container Store website and thought it looked cool, but not cool enough to spend $19.95 on.

It's called the Cocoa Slate, and it's basically a customizable dry erase board. It's double-sided with clear plastic on each side and a slot to put your own paper in the middle. This was ideal for me because when I am teaching, I often reach for paper to show a student how to do a certain math problem, diagram or graph. I use a LOT of paper this way, and I thought I could save some money buy "going green" with the dry erase board. The Slate also comes with a CD with over 500 inserts that you can just print out and stick inside. (I just discovered that has the same templates for free, just in case you lose your CD. Very handy!) Ingenius.

Hobby Lobby had these in the clearance section for just under $11. I bought one and I love it! It came with magnets but I think I'm just going to hang it by the handle. I have a feeling that my students will want to play with it. I might make it a reward for good behavior/work. :)

In other news, Austin and I went to Denton last weekend to see my family for the 4th of July. It was a lot of fun! My Pop (dad's dad) was there and so we got to see him. We played a lot of card games and enjoyed seeing everyone.

While at home, I found a CD that I had forgotten about. A few years ago, a man named Andy Gullahorn came to Community Church (my church in College Station) and did a little show. I think he was friends with Ross King or something. I bought his CD and then never really listened to it. I brought it back to Houston and I am now in love! His music is amazing and I love his clever and humorous lyrics.

Some really exciting news now - I'm going to be an aunt!! Austin's sister is pregnant and due just after our one year anniversary. I have already decided that it's going to be a girl, but I guess we'll see!

I think those are the only updates I have for right now... I wanted to post some pictures but the memory card from our camera is not being identified by my lovely laptop. I'll get Austin to fix it later. ;-)

Love to you all!


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Any Minute Now...

I always get really antsy around the time that Austin gets home. It's like I am by myself all day and then in the evening I get reminded that there's this other person I live with who is about to return so I switch out of "hermit" mode and get really excited!!! Yay for conversation and hanging out!

I heard that USA beat Spain at soccer?? That's about all I know, but since when was the US good at soccer? This is news to me. I guess we're pretty much awesome!

So for some reason my car's AC has decided that it will go crazy on me. Why it chose the summer to freak out is beyond me. The air still blows but the actual air conditioning stops. So it's just blowing insanely hot (and humid, might I add) air around the car instead of cooling me down. I tend to arrive at my chosen destinations in a pool of sticky sweat. Not so awesome. Austin and I just hope the car lasts through the summer and long enough for me to start getting big-girl paychecks. I don't know how much more of this I can take.

I just remembered that I haven't checked my Google tracking thing for this blog in a few months. Apparently I am down over 17% in the number of visits to my website. I don't know exactly what it means, but I think it has to do with the fact that I rarely update anymore. Oops.

Well, my back is starting to hurt since I'm sitting on the floor in my dining room, so I'm gonna end this post and get to the nearest couch.


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My Big-Girl Job is Scaring Me...

The summer is in full swing. I am enjoying my "off" time but in the back of my head I can't stop thinking about school.

What goes through my head most of the time is I have so much to do.

I feel like I haven't got the slightest clue where to start. I want to buy things for my classroom. But what do I need?

What is the best way to organize the classroom? How should I arrange the seating?

What do I do on the first day of school?

What if my kids get horrible test scores and I feel like a failure for teaching them nothing?

It's at times like these that I just have to switch my worrying off and tell God my concerns. He cares for me.

I want a teacher with one or two years under their belt to go shopping with me and help me furnish my classroom because I feel overwhelmed.

Okay, enough about school.

The one downside to summers are the gazillion weddings. I'm not sure how many I've been to so far but I still have at least three or so to go. Thankfully, the next two weekends are wedding-free. Austin and I are going on a camping/the Farm trip with our Sunday School group and then next weekend we are going to see my family up in Dallas. Pop's going to be there and I'm so excited!

I have stuff I need to do now so I'll have to write again later.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

June 6, 2007

Two years ago was a special day - I met Austin for the first time! I can't believe that it's only been two years. And we've been married for 5 months. You do the math. :) We don't waste time! No, we are not planning on having kids soon. That we can wait on!

Since I haven't written in forever, I have so much to update on. Since you don't want to read a novel, I will use bullet points and summarize:

  • My birthday came and gone. We left for New York on my birthday and headed to Austin's cousin's wedding. Afterwards, we hung out in the city for a few days. I got to see two Broadway shows: Phantom of the Opera and Mary Poppins. They were both incredible!
  • School has ended. I am breathing a sigh of relief because that long-term sub job was HARD! I am now officially excited about teaching for real next year. I am trying to plan how to organize and decorate my classroom. I want it to be cozy, clean and fun. Austin and I went to IKEA today and I got a lot of ideas!
  • It's SUMMER! Which means lots of time to plan, prepare, chill, hang out and relax. It's going to be awesome.
  • Austin is paying for me to have voice lessons this summer from his own voice coach. I am excited and a little nervous. I love singing, but not in front of people. He's hoping that these lessons will give me confidence in my abilities. He might be more excited about them than I am!

I think that's pretty much it. I am watching Sister Act right now with Austin and so I need to pay more attention. :)


Monday, May 18, 2009

Perks of the Job

Last week I got to hide in a dark, locked classroom for 30 or so minutes while one of my students was escorted past my classroom and out of the building.

Actually, he ended up going to ISS.

I was responsible for getting him suspended and this student has a history of attacking teachers (no joke here - there was a lockdown at the school 2 months ago).

So just in case, the assistant principal told me I should get somewhere safe.

You're never really prepared for that sort of thing.

The fun part was that he was back in my class the following day.

Oh boy.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

5-Minute Update

1. I have a job! I will be teaching 8th grade science at Baines (where I am doing the long-term sub job now) next year. I've been told the current 7th graders are awesome so I am super excited.

2. This means that I am a Longhorn... which I never thought I'd say.

3. Austin brought me flowers and a candy bar today because I had a break down last night. Things at school were getting overwhelming and I wanted to quit.

4. I didn't quit. I was extra cheerful today knowing that God gives me strength and helps me love my not-always-so-precious 8th graders.

5. I have returned to the world of grading and feeling super tired. I have a feeling it will be like this for a while.

6. A huge chunk of my students are failing. Yayyy previous teacher.

7. It's relationship status season again! That's what happens in the spring - relationship statuses change. People start dating, they break up or they get engaged or married. Seriously, check Facebook and you'll see.

8. Austin's watching some sci fi movie that I have no interest in. It will make it that much easier to grade.

9. Back to grading!

10. -Katie

Thursday, April 30, 2009

"Don't touch me! You have swine flu!"

Seriously. I have heard that phrase a million times this week.

Every 8th grader is convinced that a) the person sitting next to them has swine flu and b) they will catch swine flu and die.

They Chlorox-wiped down their desks yesterday and 1/2 of a large bottle of anti-bac hand gel is gone already (after a day).

And I get to teach these kids all day.

Tomorrow is day one of 8th grade TAKS - it was supposed to be today but since Houston flooded and school was canceled on Tuesday, everything was pushed back a day. The social studies test is on Monday so yay... TAKS gets to last even longer this year!

I really hope that I get to be a bathroom monitor so I can actually read something. If I am put in a classroom (which they can totally do since I am a certified teacher) I will cry.

Speaking of crying, I almost broke down at school today.

I wrote 4 referrals and confiscated a phone. Then the science specialist wrote some more referrals. It wasn't too pretty.

Let's see... one student said my voice was annoying and he "just thought he'd let me know". Later he called me racist after I wrote him a referral. Two girls threw hissy fits after I wrote them referrals too and I wanted to pull my hair out. One girl kept arguing with me about why it was so unfair.

"Unfair...??? Let me tell you about unfair!" I wanted to scream.

Unfair is the way I am treated every day!

Yet I pray that God gives me the patience and love to persevere and return each day. These kids need so much love.

The funny thing is, despite the way that "mean Mrs. Cox" appeared in the classrooms today, I still had kids telling me that I was their favorite teacher.

"Seriously, Mrs. Cox, we didn't learn anything until you got here. We have learned more in the past two weeks than in the past 8 months."

That just about made my tough day worth it.

That, and 7th period. Unfortunately I had to start the period by warning them: "At least 5 referrals have been written today and I took away a phone and gave it to the principal. Seriously. Don't mess with me."

God blessed me with amazingly well-behaved students for the last 50 minutes of the day. They were awesome! I got to spend all my time with three special ed kiddos who needed the attention so badly.

I love working with struggling students. It really is a passion of mine. I don't think I have a gift for working with all special ed kids, but I do like to work with really struggling ones. We played a science review board game that the science specialist had made for them. Most kids thought the game was boring and didn't take it seriously, but the sped kids loved it. I sat with them and read the questions and made sure that they didn't hog the dice or roll again if they got a one. It was the best part of my day, and they didn't even finish the game (which is crazy since most groups played about 5 times during the lesson).

Now I am physically exhausted yet emotionally and spiritually energized after meeting with my Bible study girls. We really need a name of some sort. I am truly blessed by our weekly meetings. I love my girls!

I think I'm going to go take a nice hot bath.

Goodnight, friends!

P.S. I found the picture above online... it made me laugh! I am seriously going to do this if we all are forced to wear masks! Which makes me think... do the masks really do a lot? Surely it can't really protect you very well... (Maybe I'm stupid...?)

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

No School

Due to the crazy weather yesterday and this morning, Fort Bend ISD is closed! It was a surprise to me this morning, although I was trying to figure out how I would get all the way over to the school I'm at with the flooding that occurred.

So I have a rainy day!

What am I going to do with my rainy day?

Right now, I am enjoying relaxing on my bed and listening to John Mayer's album Heavier Things. It's great rainy day music (and winter music... and mellow music...). I think I'll spend my day cleaning and organizing and menu planning. Maybe I'll even make it to the grocery store. We'll see.

The day is full of possibilities.

P.S. The photo above was taken by my sister Kellie. You can view her amazing work here and here.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Ok, So Maybe I Want to Teach 8th Grade Now...

Did I mention that I have a job?

Heck yes.

Not a real-life grown-up job, but a long-term sub job. (We're working on the grown-up one...)

I get to teach science to 8th graders!!! Their teacher is sick or something (been out for 2 weeks already... could be gone all year, who knows. Could be gone forever... = possible job?!?!)

Anyways, today was my second day. It is going great so far! I love the kids and they are already begging me to stay and be their teacher from now on. I guess that's a good sign. :-)

I got the job because I subbed at the middle school last week and asked about jobs for next year. They said they didn't have any openings at that moment but were looking for a long term sub and asked me if I had a lot of experience teaching science.

Oh, did I.

I sent in my resume that afternoon after meeting the principal and assistant principal (and it just so happened that I was subbing for the science department head that day... so I met her, too). The next morning, I got a call telling me they wanted me to be the long-term sub! They actually wanted me to start last Wednesday (the day I got the call) but I still had other sub jobs for the rest of the week. So I started yesterday.

It's a new school with great teachers and kids bored out of their minds (well, the class I am taking over anyways)!! Today we made a model of a chunk of land and cut it in half so we could model the three different types of faults. I was absolutely shocked because the kids LOVED it - they told me they had never done anything that fun before!

Are you kidding me? These poor students!!! Apparently their teacher just made them read from the textbook. I wanted to cry when I heard that.

I can't take the credit for the fun activity, though. We have a science specialist in the school who has been planning all their lessons. According to the students and two teachers, they really haven't learnt anything all year and are at risk of failing the TAKS.

I am so glad that God has given me this opportunity. I can't wait to get to know the students better.

Oh and one random thing - after I introduced myself yesterday and told a brief summary of my life story, a student came up to me at the end of class. She told me that she was born in England and lived there until 2 years ago! I asked her where she lived and she said Leicestershire. I about died because NO ONE seems to know about that area! She lived in Oadby, only 3.5 miles from the center of Leicester, where I used to shop and attend church. Her house was about an 18 minute drive from where I used to live.

Imagine that!?!

She had even heard of my junior high/high school.

I wanted to hug her. :-)

It's a small world.


Sunday, April 19, 2009

He's Not Finished With Me Yet...

This week has left me wondering why my life has turned out the way that it has. At this point in my life, I am searching for a job as a middle school science teacher. If you would have told the 10-year-old me this, I probably would have laughed, and not believed it. When I was younger, my interests were much different.

Art was my passion when I was in elementary school and middle school. I carried around this art case that had a ton of sketchbooks, how-to books, pencils and other artistic utensils inside. I loved that thing. I would sit for hours and draw people's faces.

When I was seven, my parents bought an acre of land (and didn't build on it until I was 20). I was fascinated by the blueprints for our future house and became obsessed with drawing my own blueprints. I would color them and add furniture and everything. For a very long time, I wanted to be an architect.

Art was such a huge part of my life all through middle school. It was my best subject in school and I wanted to continue taking art classes. However, I could only choose three extra subjects to take after 8th grade. I had chosen art, design technology and information technology, but the teachers would not allow me to take 3 classes that all had huge projects as part of their coursework - the limit was 2. For some insane reason, I decided to take art off my list and take German instead. I was very good at German, but I look back now and wonder why on earth I thought it was more important than information technology (that class was horrible - my only B).

From that point on, art started getting squeezed out of my life. I still had design technology and I loved it. I got to make things with wood, metal and plastic and still be creative. It was my favorite class ever, hands down. I wanted to continue taking it after my sophomore year of high school but my school didn't offer it. It was at that point in my life that I chose to take math, chemistry and English literature for my junior and senior years of high school. The art was gone forever.

Suddenly my life had gone from art-filled to science/math-filled. I had always loved science and math but I had never thought that I would choose a job related to those subjects. I went to college thinking I wanted to major in engineering, but after a year of painful physics classes I changed my mind and choose teaching.

I got to take one art class during my sophomore year of college and I loved it (my teacher said I was the best in class... which was the best compliment ever).

Thinking about all of this just made me think: why? Why did all those things happen that shut art of my life? Recently in Bible study we were talking about creative gifts that God had given us and the ways that we used them. While answering that question I realized that it was a part of me that was missing. I felt like I have lost part of my personality.

That hit me hard.

I talked about it with Austin a lot. I wondered why God wanted me to pursue something that was completely different to what I was passionate about as a child. I am passionate about teaching math and science to middle school students now, but it is something I would never have expected. I still miss art.

I believe that God allows us to make choices for ourselves instead of choosing every single detail of our lives for us, but still has a plan for us. I know that I will never know why I was supposed to be a science teacher instead of an architect or an art teacher. But I trust God and will follow Him.

The title of my post is from a song called "Wait and See" by Brandon Heath. Look it up if you don't know it. I love that God is not finished with me yet and He still has a plan for me! I am excited to find out what it is. :)

I know that as far as art goes, I plan to incorperate a lot of art into my science classes. I'm not sure exactly how yet, but it's going to be awesome!

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Hey Honey, I'm Home!

I saw this on a facebook status today and thought that I'd share with you. I have literally laughed out loud on a number of occasions. I think July 12 is a personal favorite.

Well, folks, I'm still here. I've been subbing a lot, which I guess is good. At one school a lady told me that her principal noticed me and told her to make sure that I didn't leave without giving them my name and number. That's a good thing, right? The school even called me today to see if I could sub tomorrow. I already have another job, though.

About a week and a half ago I went on a women's retreat through my church. I normally get kinda shy when stuff like that comes up and so I never apply for them. However, it was Austin who first heard about it and encouraged me to go. I found some more girls from our "honeymooners" Bible study and we all signed up. I had a wonderful time. The theme was "Why We Need Girlfriends" and was focused around the story of Mary and Elizabeth in Luke 1. I had heard their story so many times but this time my eyes were opened to the beautiful friendship that these two women shared. Elizabeth was elderly and had been through so much pain and shame in her life because she was barren. Mary was a teenager and had yet to experience pain and shame because of her pregnancy. Because Elizabeth remained faithful to God, despite the fact that she could never have children, God was able to bless her and use her. In His timing, Elizabeth became pregnant. Mary and Elizabeth were able to comfort each other as they carried the babies of perhaps the two (at least one) most important men in the Bible.

Houston is so different because it is so new. I don't have a lot of friends yet, but I trust that God is going to show me women with whom I can bond and have a deep friendship. He has already blessed me with some girls that I meet with every Thursday night. I think I mentioned that two of my friends from college, Stacie and Haley, are living on the west side of Houston. Haley literally lives less than 10 minutes away from me! None of us are from Houston, but we all ended up here. At my wedding, Haley and Stacie actually talked about how they didn't know any girls and needed that fellowship... So the week after they started meeting. Now I get to be a part of the group and we are loving it!

This week we are starting The Names of God by Ann Spangler. There are 52 different names of God that the Bible uses, and we will start studying one each week. I can't wait to grow and learn more about the characteristics of God with these girls! They are such a blessing to me!

So my friend Catlin mentioned that she uses Google Analytics for her website. I decided to try it out, too. Yes, that's right people.... I'm tracking you! It's so much fun. I'm actually surprised that so many people visit my site when I don't even update. No wonder they only spend an average of less than a minute on my page... :-/ Well, so I think it's really interesting. I know that I have readers in Texas (surprise surprise), Florida (Erin I assume!), California (who are you!?) and Colorado (Lauren!). But I also have a reader in Wales and one in China. I am global, ladies and gentlemen! Haha. But seriously, I think it's interesting. I wonder who they are!

I know that I read many blogs regularly of people who don't know me at all. I've been tempted to email them or comment on their blog, but I don't since I think it might creep them out. I love random comments, though... so if you want to introduce yourself... :-)

Ok, enough about my blog.

How about someone else's blog? My mom told me about this newlywed's blog and so I have decided to write about it.

I am not a fantastic chef but I want to learn. This website has helped me! Elizabeth, the blogger, loves to cook and try out recipes, and she takes pictures of her creations. But better than that, she takes pictures at each step of the food-making process. I love that! Go check out her site. Yesterday I made the tamale casserole. It was yummy!

Well kiddos, this girl is hungry for the brownies that she made last night (also on the website mentioned above... except that I didn't cook them long enough). I'm gonna go eat one.

Peace out!


Thursday, March 26, 2009

Crying and Clinton

Tomorrow will conclude my worst sub assignment ever.

I took a 3-day job teaching 6th grade at an elementary school. I know what you're thinking. Yes, they squeezed 6th graders into all the elementary schools in this particular area and it is not working out.

Yesterday was the worst subbing experience I've ever had. It consisted of:

- kids not listening to me at all
- students running in and out of the classroom for no reason
- lots of tattling
- physical stuff, mainly pushing and shoving (followed by more tattling)
- kids so out of control two policemen were called to the school
- desks thrown and chairs thrown
- kids refusing to do anything when I yell "PICK UP THOSE DESKS!!!"
- me giving a 10 minute speech to my homeroom kids at the end of the day which resulted in
- me crying in front of all the students.

Yes. I cried. Not because of the disrespect I was shown. But because of the lives these kids are throwing away. They don't care about school or their future. They really don't care about anyone but themselves, and they will suffer greatly for it.

Two girls went and told another teacher that I was upset, and when the teacher walked in I started bawling.

I am not one to show my emotions like that, especially in public. ESPECIALLY in front of complete strangers. But I did.

Today, the kids were a lot better.

Not all of them, but some. I still had to call for an administrator to remove one student from my classroom. (He was the one laughing at me when I was crying while all the other kids were yelling at him to shut up.)

Anyways, I returned to the school today, mainly because I had to, but also because I don't give up that easily.

The teacher in the room next to mine was shocked. "You came BACK!?"
I told her that I don't give up easily and she just said, "God bless you. God bless you."

Tomorrow I return again. I just pray for the strength to love these kids and be firm with them. They need that so badly, as weird as that sounds. They need discipline.

* * * * *
On a lighter note, I tried to contain my laughter during one conversation I had yesterday. A student was reading "100 People Who Changed America" and pointing out different incredible people. He got to a picture of Abraham Lincoln and then said, "Do you know who my three favorite presidents are?" I told him I didn't. "They are Abraham Lincoln.... George Washington..... and Obama."
That right there made me want to laugh. But not as much as what followed:
"Do you know who was president when I was born?"
"Hmmmm...." I said. "Let me guess. Clinton?"
"Nope. No, it was uh, it was Clinton's husband."
I had to think for a minute before I realized that I had a generation gap on my hands. The only Clinton he knew was Hillary!!!
Oh, kids.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Sick Times Three

Did I mention that I am getting over being sick for the THIRD time in a month and half?

This time, the doctor gave me steroids and stronger antibiotics. He also gave me a cough syrup with codeine in it that made me sick. It was a little bottle of evil and I had to lay on the couch for a few hours in the same position until the room stopped spinning.

Anyways, I think the steroid/antibiotic combo is working and hopefully I'll be back to normalish by tomorrow.

I don't think my body gets along with Houston very well. I have never had such horrible allergies.

It kinda stinks that it's Spring Break (and I actually get Spring Break off) and I'm sick. Not that I was planning on doing a lot of crazy things, but I wanted to get out instead of staying inside all day on the couch.

Maybe I can pack all my fun in tomorrow. ;-)


Monday, March 16, 2009

Fun Being Frugal

One of the reasons I love Austin is because he is very good with money. I mean, he's a financial advisor so that says something in itself. But he has always been good with his money.

Most kids go to Chuck-E-Cheese, get some tokens and then buy whatever they can afford at the end of the day. Austin, on the other hand, would save up his tokens for who knows how long and buy the super nice prizes. Not very many kids have the patience to do that.

I love that Austin is smart with his money. He is generous - he loves giving at church and to missions. But he is also a saver and knows not to blow his money on stupid stuff.

Since we just got married, and since I don't have a job, we have to be smart with money right now. We love to eat spaghetti since it is really cheap. We also have found out some really awesome ways to have fun on a budget.

Austin loves pawn shops. I admit that before I knew him, I had never dared to venture into one. They scared me a little. But Austin has opened my eyes to the world of pawn shops. Yes, they are filled with power tools, electronics, guns and ugly jewelry, but they are also filled with cheap DVDs and VHS tapes. Since we love movies and have a VHS player (bought at a pawn shop), we will go to pawn shops and buy tons of VHS tapes. We actually did this on Saturday. They were 25 cents each!!! You can't beat that.

The pawn shop we went to also had a lot of CDs, which is something I had never seen at a pawn shop before. They were $1.50 each. We got a Jason Mraz album for $1.50. No scratches. Seriously, pawn shops are better than Half Price Books sometimes!

Another thing we love to do is go to the dollar theater. Who wants to pay $9 to see a movie? Not me. We spend $3 for the two of us to see a movie that's been out for a while and take some quarters along with us to play some arcade games!

We also did some inexpensive decorating on Saturday. Austin has a large collection of records - mostly classic rock and big band - and so we bought some record frames at Target and framed four of the album covers. They're so cool looking!

Do you have any money-saving tips? I'd love to hear them!


Thursday, March 12, 2009

Yay Middle School!

There was once a time during my college days when I couldn't decide if I wanted to teach sweet and cute little elementary kiddos or sassy and cocky middle schoolers.

Somehow, probably by God's grace, I chose the cocky kids.

I am beyond thankful.

I know that subbing is not like real teaching, since you only get to be the "teacher" for a day most times. I know that a sub job is not really an accurate experience of what the class is normally like.

Still, my two worst subbing experiences have been in elementary schools.

I don't know if it's because I just haven't had experience in an elementary school or what, but they have been terrible.

The first was 2nd grade at an open concept school.

Don't know what an open concept school is? Think of a huge room of office cubicles, and turn the cubicles into classrooms. There are no doors and most walls are about 5 feet high. It's noisy and you don't have much privacy. There are points you can stand at and see into four classrooms at once. It's a very 60's design and it pretty much sucks.

Anyways, 2nd grade was not fun. The kids were whiny and tattled on each other every five minutes.

Today I had a fifth grade class. Even though I was actually certified to teach this particular class (it was math/science and I am certified to teach math/science 4-8), I still felt a little lost.

I think because it was at an elementary school. You have to line everyone up in a straight and very quiet single-file line to go anywhere. Impossible.

The fifth graders I had today were so disrespectful. They would talk when I was talking and kids would get out of their seats whenever they wanted. I even had kids leaving the classroom for no reason at all.

I've never experienced anything so horrible.

I also had recess duty, which made me want to cry.

I got another class for recess and since it was raining outside, they came into my classroom to watch a DVD. Except that the DVD wouldn't work on the computer because it wasn't Windows XP or higher. So we tried a VHS tape. That wouldn't work either. So then the kids decided they want to play a game. They start screaming and yelling and fighting and running. I desperately tried to get things under control but the kids didn't really care since they had no idea who I was. The behavior specialist had to come from down the hall (because the kids were so loud) and straighten them out. She gave them an amazing lecture and they sat in silence for the remaining 5 minutes of recess.

I wish I could be that lady. She was my hero.

I gave my class a nice talking to at the end of the day about how horrible they were and how they were representing their school and they should be ashamed of themselves.

I hope that when I have my own class, my students know how to behave when a sub is there. I was truly appalled.

All that goes to say, I love 7th and 8th graders. Most people think I am crazy but I would rather spend a week with them than a day with elementary school students.

Yay middle school.


Friday, March 06, 2009


Do you ever hear a song that immediately takes you back to a different time and place? I'm not just talking about songs that remind you of junior high. I'm talking about songs that seem to transport you to a completely different year, town, season, etc. The lighting seems to change and so does the temperature and even the scent of the air changes. I'm talking about those sorts of songs.

Whenever I hear "More" by Matthew West, I am walking across Academic Plaza at midnight (or even later) after Upstream on a Thursday night. Upstream is a Bible Study that I used to go to during freshman year. It's only for freshmen and it was awesome! I used to go there with my friend Catherine, but since we were in different Bible study groups, we would finish at different times and we never walked back to our dorm together. To keep myself company on the long walk back to southside from northside, I would put my iPod in and turn up the music. I listened to "More" many times freshman year, but I especially loved it as I walked back to my dorm. I would look up at the sky as Matthew West sung those beautiful words...

I love you more than the sun and the stars
That I taught how to shine
You are Mine
And you shine for Me too

I love you yesterday
And today
And tomorrow
I'll say it again and again
I love you more

It it is amazing to be reminded of the amazing love that God has for us. No matter how alone or small and insignificant I feel, God is not going to let go and He will never forget me. Freshman year was so much fun, but I felt very alone a lot of the time. My family was 5,000 miles away and I only knew one person (Anna!) when I started college. The lyrics to "More" were comforting to me. If you don't know the song, I recommend looking it up to listen to it!

It's no secret that I love John Mayer's music (Austin's not a fan, but that's ok). My favorite song is "3x5". It's probably my favorite song, period. Well, if we're not throwing praise songs into the mix. When I hear that song, I am sitting on top of a hay bale, alone, looking at the sunset over the English countryside in the summertime. I didn't like to take walks very often when I lived in England, but I remember this one walk I had that I really enjoyed.

Didn't have a camera by my side this time
Hoping I would see the world through both my eyes
Maybe I will tell you all about it
When I'm in the mood to lose my way with words

You should have seen that sunrise with your own eyes
It brough me back to life
You'll be with me next time I go outside
No more 3x5s

I listened to this song, sitting on that hay bale during summer 2006. It was the last time I was going to be in England for a long time. My family moved back four months later. I guess I was trying to take it all in. There are very few people I know who have experienced that part of my life with me. Austin is not one of those people. No matter how many photographs I show him, he has no way of really knowing what my life was like. Pictures just don't do it justice. Sitting on that hay, I knew that the next time I came back to that spot, I would have him with me (even though I didn't know him then). That day I finally overcame trying to fit the world inside a picture frame. I love that song.

Summer 2007 was another big summer for me. It was the first (and only) summer I took summer school at A&M, and I loved every moment of it. It was also the summer that I met Austin and fell in love (okay, maybe not "fell in love", but I had a crush...). Whenever I listen to Jon McLaughlin's album "Indiana", especially the song "Industry" when I'm driving in my car, I am no longer in Houston/Dallas/wherever. I am in College Station, after class one hot day, with Carolyn in the car, blasting the music, and we are planning something awesome to do for the rest of our day. I loved that summer. I felt so free. We had so much fun hanging out, sharing an apartment, going to Coffee Station and doing completely random things.

Caedmon Call's song "Table for Two" also reminds me of that summer. When I hear it, I am walking across campus one beautiful morning from G. Rollie to Blocker. It was a long walk, and I enjoyed listening to my iPod during the walk. I remember "Table for Two" for some reason. I would be wearing my stretchy pilates pants (I had pilates first, and then statistics), feeling a little self-conscious in such tight clothing, but choosing not to let it wreck my morning. Haha... and then if I was lucky, Austin would be at Blocker waiting for me. Haha.... oh, it's funny to think back to those times. I recently told him about how I felt self-conscious in those pilates pants, but he doesn't even remember them. I'm trying to remember why he was even at Blocker at that time in the morning... I honestly think he just went there to see me. :-)

Wow, it's fun to think of old memories. And those are just a few songs I thought I'd share. Are there any songs that "transport" you to a certain time and place? I would love to hear about them!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

You've Got to be Kidding Me.

Here I am, sick AGAIN, laying on the couch. For the second day in a row.

How did I get sick again only a month after my horrible puking virus? This time, it's sinus junk. That seems to be the story of my life.

I kind of blame myself, though. I told myself that I was going to use my Neti Pot (well I don't actually use the pot anymore, I bought the more extreme version to use) every day. And I didn't. The wedding was near and I was busy and stressed and I couldn't remember to use it every day.

I'm going to get better at it and then hopefully I won't have another episode like this.

When I'm sick, I become a completely different person. I don't care about washing my face or hair or brushing my teeth. I also want to lay around all day which normally drives me crazy.


I really want to cook dinner for my sweet husband tonight so I'm going to go see if I can do it. We'll see.


Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Good News!

Yesterday I subbed for a 1/2 day at the closest middle school to my apartment. It took about 3 minutes to get there. Sweet.

I had always wanted to get a sub job there because I wanted to know what kind of school it was. If it was anything like the schools I had already subbed at, I wasn't interested.

Yesterday, I got my wish. I was able to get a 1/2 day of 6th grade math. Hooray! Something I was actually certified to teach! (Yesterday morning I was being offered jobs like 1st grade bilingual. Yuck. Gag me. Oh, and Middle School Boy's P.E. Really? Who on earth thinks I am qualified to teach that? Not to mention the correct gender.)

Aaaaanyways. I got to the school at 12:15 and got to meet the teacher before she left. She seemed pretty nice, and she was NOT leaving me worksheets for the kids to do. I had to actually teach! I was so thankful. Worksheets make me sick! For the three different classes I had, we got to learn about and discuss the metric system (length, to be specific) and I loved every minute of it. I know that I don't want to teach math, but I still love it.

The second class I had was actually an inclusion class. For those of you who don't know what that means, it means that there are special education kids in your classroom so there is a SPED teacher in there too. After I had started teaching and the kids were doing some practice on their own, the SPED teacher asked me if I was a teacher because apparently it was pretty obvious. I told her that I was and we talked for a minute or two about how I was looking for a job in Fort Bend. Later in the class she asked if I carried copies of my resume with me. Unfortunately I am in the process of updating it so I didn't have any.

Well, that class ended and I tried to go meet the principal during the planning period that followed but I didn't have any luck because he was in meetings. Shortly after the planning period ended and I was standing outside the door greeting the next group of kiddos, a man walked up to me (by a teacher's description I knew it was the principal) and told me that he had been told by the SPED teacher to come up and meet me. He was like, "So you're certified to teach math and science? Well I can tell you that we have a few math positions opening and one or two science positions that will be available for next year."

I asked what grade the science position would be.

"That would be, uh, 7th grade."


I hope he didn't get scared because I put my hands up in the air and said "YES!!! That's my favorite!!!!" He told me to shoot him an email next week with my resume included.

How super cool is that? Of course I don't know if that will work out and even if it does, I still want to see what's out there. But it's a start.

Everyone at the school was nice and helpful and had nothing but wonderful things to say about the school.

And I sure would like to only drive 3 minutes to get to school. I mean, that would make my millennium.

God is good.

Now I'm sitting at Panera again because I didn't get a job today. I got some calls once I was taking a nap (at like 10 or 11) but rejected them because the job was from "8:20-4:20" and really far away. By the time I got to the schools it would only be a half day. Plus, I don't know how it works if they offer you a job after school has already started. It's not like I can talk to a real person about it. VIPER is automated.

Speaking of Panera.... I have discovered my new favorite hot tea: Ginger Peach by The Republic of Tea (it's a black tea). A little of the brown cane sugar and a spot of milk and it's perfect.

So that's all I have for right now. Later!


Saturday, February 21, 2009

Are You a Teenager?

It's Saturday afternoon and I'm here at my [new] favorite coffee place. Austin is sitting next to me with his dad, and they're working on a seminar that Austin's going to be doing with churches in the area. (Know anyone who needs any long-term care?)

I've been having fun drinking hot tea and working on a facebook photo album of our honeymoon pictures. If you'd like to view them, go here.

So let's see. This week I got to sub three times - all at different schools. Hopefully I will be able to sub five days a week from now on. I was just getting started this weeks so things were a little different. I was really excited about my sub job yesterday because I was supposed to do 6th grade math and science. I'm certified to teach those subjects so I was like, "YEAH! I can do this!!" The bad thing was, when I got there, this guy walked into the classroom and said that he could take over, and that I could go work in the library.

Fun, fun.

I didn't know if he was a teacher or another sub, so I thought I should probably trade with him. We traded, and my day was very... well, let's just say that I know why I chose middle school over elementary. (The 6th grade was added with K-5 at this particular school.)

Sheesh! I spent the day having 45 minute sessions with grades K-5. We showed them all the same video about the book fair that's coming, and then we either showed them The Cat in Hat or Holes (depending on their grade). Now, I honestly love Holes, but watching the first 20 minutes over and over again was not so fun.

When I wasn't working with the kiddos, I got to talk to the other librarian. We had a very long conversation about her pet schnauzer. She told me how she wanted to get her a "mate" so she could have the experience of having sex in her lifetime. Not for puppies or anything, but for the pleasure (??) of it. She said that she would let her "have a boyfriend for a while and then get her spayed". She didn't want to deprive her dog of doggy sex. The entire time we were talking I was trying to convince myself in my head that this was a very normal topic of conversation and that it wasn't weird at all. But the truth is, that's just freaking weird. She was a very nice lady, though... I was just weirded out.

I also got told by a first grader that I had "bouncy hair" and one third grader asked if I was a teenager.

Another fun part of the day was when some of the kindergartners started crying because they didn't get a sticker. We gave some stickers out to the kids who were quiet and watched the movie and the ones who were bad didn't get them. So of course we had lots of bawling as we handed them back over to their teacher. The teacher was confused so we explained it and she was like, "Well, if they didn't deserve it..." Haha.

Other than that strange subbing experience, my week was pretty good. I met up with two friends for a ladies' small group on Thursday night, and it was amazing.

Haley has been a friend of mine since freshman year of college, and I've known Stacie for a few years. She married my friend Kurt and they now live in Houston. We had a wonderful time having tea and chai lattes.

I discovered that Kurt and Stacie live 15-20 minutes away, and Haley lives 9 minutes away from me. Seriously. I couldn't believe it!!! Out of all the places that your college friends can move...!!! We all live pretty close to each other and I can forsee lots of hangouts in the future. We went over to Kurt and Stacie's apartment last night and had a blast. We played Nerts (or is it Nertz?) for hours on end and had chocolate fondue. Yum.

I am excited about the ladies' group and I know that many purposeful conversations will come from our meetings.

Things are starting to look up!


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Job Begins...

Today was my first day of subbing.


I took over a 7th and 8th grade Spanish classroom, which was a lot of fun actually.

Besides the fact that I don't speak any Spanish!

I was one of only two white people I saw the entire day, including teachers. It was a different world for sure, but the kids were great. The only problem I had was the fact that the kids had to do this incredibly tedious worksheet. It was very repetitive.

The kids were pretty nice for the most part, and the teachers were very friendly. I don't have any funny stories from today, but maybe I'll have one soon.

Tonight I'm on my own. Austin has spent the day in College Station doing some recruiting for his company. They also have a Meet and Greet tonight, so after I got home from subbing, I was alone. He's going to be gone until late tonight. That's why I decided to come to Panera Bread and use the internet!

Right now I feel very full. Full of food, first of all, but also full of emotions and thoughts. It's still hard for me here in Sugar Land. I knew that it would be a big change once I got married, but I didn't expect to feel this alone. I wish I had friends! I guess I should say: I wish my friends lived closer!


I just put my blog back up on Facebook. I took it off for a while during student teaching because I wanted to be cautious, but it doesn't seem to be a big deal.

Ohh! Just as I type, I got a call from the sub system. I was requested to be a sub tomorrow for middle school math. Yippee! A subject that I actually know and can do! I'm excited. Now to figure out where it is...

I'm gonna go now. I need to call a dear friend and catch up. :)


Friday, February 13, 2009


The event password is hillcox.

Sorry guys!

They're Here!

Check it out.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Pictures! Coming Soon!

I just got two emails from our wedding photographer saying that our wedding pictures are going to be up soon!!! Yay! I'll let you guys know when the album becomes available.

Good news: I am officially in the Fort Bend ISD sub system! Well I actually think I have to call a number to get my little pin thing, but I got the email telling me so which is the most important part.

Things are looking up here in Sugar Land.

Also, I bought Lecrae's new album, Rebel, yesterday. It's freaking amazing! I love rap and hip-hop music, but hate the filthy lyrics that accompany the mainstream stuff. Lecrae's music is God-glorifying and an awesome ministry. My favorite song right now is Identity.

Ok, I don't really have a lot to say right now. I need to rush home and cook for my husband! Yippee!

As a special treat for reading this post, you get to see two pictures of me and Austin on our honeymoon! (I JUST put all our pictures on my computer today... I'm about a month late. :-/)

Peace out!


Thursday, February 05, 2009

Can Anyone Say, "Barf?"

Today is my first day "out" on my own since Sunday. Austin and I went to watch the Superbowl at some friends' house and I ended up throwing up in their toilet about 15 times. Then I threw up twice on the way home, crying most of the time. Then I threw up all night Sunday night. Actually, I had it coming out of the other end, too... so I was throwing up in a pot while sitting on... the... pot.

Sorry, is this TMI?

I can be the queen of TMI if I'm not stopped. I really don't mind sharing very personal details with complete strangers. You can ask me about bodily functions galore or even birth control, and I will tell all. It doesn't bother me.

So anyways, I have been really sick for the past four days.

Austin said that in his entire life and college career in the corps, he has never heard anyone throw up that violently.

I guess that sometimes my stomach doesn't like me! I haven't been that sick in a REALLY long time.

Now I'm back on my feet, feeling still a little queasy, out to conquor the world.

My first battle was at the FBISD offices, trying to sort out my subbing junk. I think I'm in the clear, though! I even have a badge made. I also have a long-term subbing job lined up! I get to teach math, science and social studies to 4th graders, which should be a lot of fun!

My second battle will be grocery store shopping. I'm not going to do much, but I I need enough to live. I had to make oatmeal with water for breakfast this morning and it was nasty.

Well, friends, I must leave. I'll try to get on here soon. Panera Bread is just too cold for me right now!


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Where's the Zyrtec?

I have such sweet blog friends! Thank you, all, for your encouragement sympathy. I think any new chapter in life not only brings sweet times but also a little bit of pain and frustration. I have been doing much better since I posted last. I think your comments helped me a great deal! That, and the fact that Austin brought me flowers last night. I have such a wonderful husband! :-)

Although there's no establishment that can replace my beloved Coffee Station, I believe that I have discovered my "grown-up" Coffee Station, complete with sophisticated-sounding drink names and wealthy businessmen instead of scruffy college students. The owners are incredibly nice and they make sure that you get a cold glass of ice water after your Cioco Delice, which, by the way, is my favorite new "drink" at this coffee shop. I use quotations because you have to eat it with a spoon. A Cioco Delice is essentially chocolate soup, and it is delightful! It's hot and has frothy whipped cream on top, as well as a rich chocolate drizzle. You can't go wrong with a chocolate drizzle! I come here to use the free wireless internet and enjoy chocolatey goodness, a relaxed and soothing atmosphere as well as excellent service and relatively low prices. You can't beat that. Plus, I think they play Frank Sinatra.

Yesterday I did something dangerous: I picked up a book. I'm not much of a reader, to be honest, but when I do start reading (a book I am truly interested in - not a textbook or anything!) I can't put the book down! I was organizing the apartment and I noticed Searching For God Knows What by Donalad Miller in a stack of books. I have read this book before, and I'm sure I blogged about it, but I picked it up again because I couldn't remember exactly what it was about. All I remembered is that I love Donald Miller and am always amazed by his writing! I read for several hours yesterday which rarely ever happens. I'm a slow reader, however, so I'm only on page 87 or something like that.

Wow, I hope I'm not getting sick. I've been sneezing all day and I'm starting to feel a little icky. Maybe it has something to do with how it was 80 degrees yesterday and now it's 39. Seriously, though, where's the Zyrtec when I need it?

Well, I'm about done here. It's time to blog stalk and spend a few more hours on the internet before going back home.

Love to you all!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Panera Thoughts

I feel very far away from everyone. Right now I am sitting in Panera Bread, alone, using their wireless internet since we still don't have internet in our apartment. The past couple of days have been somewhat difficult for me as I have been trying to adjust to my new life here in Sugarland-ish. (I say ish because we don't technically live in Sugarland... it's on the border though!) I miss the days filled with classes and studying and random adventures with my friends. I miss being able to go to Coffee Station and see at least one familiar face. Here, I feel very alone during the days.

Don't get me wrong - I absolutely love being married! It is such a blessing to have Austin come home to me every evening. I love spending time with him. We have such a blast! We love cooking together and going on fun dates together. I wouldn't trade being married for anything! But while Austin is off at work, I crave spending time with my friends. Growing up kind of sucks in some ways.

Yesterday gave me hope, however. We got to go to church for the first time as a married couple, and we went to the married Bible study class afterwards. It was my third time to go, so I knew a few people already. The people are so much fun and they are so friendly! We went to lunch with some people afterwards, which gave us the opportunity to talk to them more. I know that I am really going to enjoy being at that church. :-)

Really, all I am saying is this: I love being married and living here, but to be honest, some friends would be nice.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Married Life

I promise I'm still here!

Austin and I just don't have internet yet and so I only get online when I can get to Panera Bread... but I'm not a huge fan of using my internet in public. We'll get it sorted out soon and then I can write a real post.

This one is just to say that we are married (YAY) and that our honeymoon was amazing. We had so much fun! Now Austin's back to work and I'm waiting to hear back from the subbing lady to see if I can start working! I'm ready to earn some money!

As soon as I get pictures I will post them. I just haven't seen a ton yet. Let's see if these pictures show up:

I know they're small, but it's all I can do for right now.

Married life is a blast so far!!! :-)