Thursday, September 30, 2010

Good Habits - September 30

Yaaaay! It's payday!

So we're in Journalism I and I have a bunch of students who have waited until the very last possible moment to contact their advertisers. Big surprise there. And they're like "but Ms. Clix, they weren't open yesterday!" Well who's had this assignment for a month?

AURGH! So. Frustrating.

And students who have waited until the very last possible moment to do their photo shoots. Seriously. WTF. I'm frustrated and tired.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Good Habits - September 28

Only two more days until payday - I think we'll make it! WOOT!

So today is definitely going to be interesting. I only got fiveish hours of sleep last night; I was ready for bed around nine but I wasn't sleepy, so I wound up puttering around for another couple of hours... putting things away, doing a little laundry, downloading photos I thought I'd show one of my teacher-friends. Worked on the costume some more. That sort of thing.

And then I was wiiiide awake at oh-dark-thirty this morning. Got up just after five. And I've got students staying after today to make up work, and I've got dance tonight so ... I might be able to take a nap if we go RIGHT home after the students finish their work and I go right to bed, but not much. Fortunately class is 6:30-7:30 tonight - I think - so it's not like I'll be out late.

It is SO easy for me to get distracted. Facebook, tooth-brushing, vitamins, grading, breakfast... just a bunch of things say "hey, don't forget about me!" And the thing is, they're things that I will forget if I'm not careful. Well, except Facebook. I don't know if you can 'forget' that since it's not really something you need to do.

Wish I could say that about grading. :P

I'm nervous about my JRL 1s. Sooo many of them have NOT turned in their photo shoots. They're to have three of them turned in by - oh! - TOMORROW. GRRR. I just know I'm going to get a bunch of photos of classes doing zilch. Like working out of the book or something. Which I guess isn't too too bad for the first time we've done this as an assignment... I dunno. Next month one of the criteria for completion is definitely going to be "activity other than reading, notes, or bookwork."

Need to do some more planning on my next unit - got a week or two left on 1984, but I don't want to get down to the wire. But that'll go over on Epic Adventures... plus I already met my word count. Yey!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Good Habits - September 27

So - yeah.

I really don't like writing these things. There's just SO MUCH going on at school that I can't just write and I'm only writing because I've told myself that I ought to and that it's good for me and I don't WANT TO WRITE DAMMIT.

But I can't go for my walk yet because I'm still charging my mp3 player. Oo, that reminds me - I need to charge my phone. Part of me says, Clix, go get the phone NOW and put it on the charger, or you'll forget. But then that interrupts my writing time. Now does that matter? Because I haven't set myself a time-goal anyway; mine's word count. Does it matter if I get to my word count all in one go or here and there? Or not? And now that I've included this little thought-process on here, maybe I'll remember to put my phone on the charger after all. I'm going to try to remember. We'll see how that goes.

And... I'm done. Of course, I haven't met my word count yet. But I don't have much else that I want to write about. I'd rather check facebook. Or gather up my library books and stack them up on the top shelf of my desk where I said I'd keep them. Of course, that space is now taken up with get-well and thinking-of-you cards. Hm.

I got a necklace today from one of my students! So thoughtful. Oo, I need to remember to take my hospital 'bracelet' off. I feel silly when I forget about it until I'm in bed and it's uncomfortable but I don't want to get up and... bleh. Anyway the necklace is a cute little breast cancer ... button ... thing on a black ribbon. It's quite darling!! I'm so delighted by it. ^.^

Also today I started putting the grommets on my Rapunzel costume. It is SOOOO nerve-wracking, let me tell you. I could feel my pulse speeding up. And I started sweating. I went to the home ec classroom and sat with the sewing teacher and hyperventilated the whole way through. I think she found it quite entertaining. ;) I'm really excited! I think the costume is going to look awesome.

And hopefully by now I've met my word count!

WOOT! I did. ^.^

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Good Habits - September 25

I'm sick of poo.

Seriously. One of the things I never knew about chemo is how much my life would become about poo. Let me tell you, it is apparently hell on the digestive system. I knew I would be nauseous, but the poo? They don't tell you about the poo.

I need something stronger than Tums. I've been chomping these things down like they're frickin' M&Ms. Well, maybe not quite in those numbers. How about like Starbursts? I mean, I'm not putting a handful in my mouth at the same time and chowing down...

Then again, I really don't eat M&Ms. So maybe that's inaccurate for other reasons.

But yeah, I was up every hour or two last night to grab some more Tums and head to the potty. *sigh* Very annoying when you're so damn tired and you're also disturbing someone ELSE's sleep. Blih.

But now I'm awake, at least for a little bit. And I'm going to update Goodreads.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Good Habits - September 24

Hoo boy, I'm tired. I don't know if I even slept at all last night. Journalism just started and the prompt is "What is the most important thing you have learned from school in the last four years? Why?"

I told them that the most important thing I had learned was that work is much more pleasant when you like the people you're working with.

I've got to get the supplement printed out and get some help proofing that. I had someone offer to help and it just needs a new set of eyes. Ditto for the newspaper. I also need to call the printer and make sure we can send it Monday and get it back by Wednesday.

The Journalism students are doing bookwork. I'm SO tired.

English II is nice and quiet. They're all playing catch-up. I think after lunch I'm going to offer them a chance to get some extra credit by writing DonorsChoose thank you letters.

I feel like I'm cheating. By the time I get students settled and working on THEIR freewrites, and I take attendance and review the lesson plan, I only have a few minutes to write. So it's just kind of a jumbled bit of nothing that goes here.

Oh well. I guess kind-of-nothing is better than ACTUAL nothing, eh?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Good Habits - September 22

Back at school today. Yesterday was ... interesting. Stayed home and in bed most of the day. Kept my phone handy because I asked my Journalism Gremlins to report in.

So of course today is catchup-day. I've got a meeting during planning but we don't have enough people here for the activity we were supposed to do together. It really irritates me because it's due tomorrow, and the person who requested that we meet today isn't here! AURGH!

I have a meeting after school today and I don't think I'm going to make it. I'm ready to go home and take a nap. WHEW.

It's incredibly frustrating to hear from several colleagues in my department that they just want to play along with our current professional development. Kind of like, keep your head down and do what you've always done and hopefully you won't get reamed out for it. And I'm thinking... what about becoming a better teacher? Why NOT actually work together, like they've given us time for, instead of just doing what we've always done? Why NOT review work together rather than slogging through it alone?

Hearing my fellow teachers complain that they don't understand what our PD coordinator wants is discouraging. It wasn't that hard - (1) use data from previous years to determine which of our students may need extra help, and (2) present a student work sample to the group and then listen as the group discusses the work sample.

Not. Frikkin. Tough.

But, God, they whine worse than the teenagers! "When are we supposed to have time to dooo this?" and "I don't know why they think they know so much; I'm just gonna do what I've always done."

And I'm scared. We're working on 1984 and I have several who aren't reading at home, but won't read in class, either. I keep hearing "It's too hard!" and "It's so boring!" And I'm not entirely sure what to do. :( I wonder about giving them some questions and going online to SparkNotes together, so they at least have some idea of what's going on... but then I don't want them just using that as a substitute for the novel. I'm really just feeling lost. :(

Monday, September 20, 2010

Good Habits - September 20

Hopefully this day won't kill me.

So I'd scheduled fall sports photos for after school today. Two of the three coaches contacted me this morning and said "oops." *sigh* So, gotta reschedule those. Seniors are not showing up for their appointment times. Trying to track them down.

I just... I'm tired, and frustrated, and ANGRY. No. Maybe not angry. I think "resentful" is more accurate. When seniors just come into the middle of class and say "I didn't sign up for retakes." And I'm not just frustrated with them. I scheduled all the seniors I didn't have listed, and then last week I sent out an email to all teachers saying "if you have ANY of these students, please remind them of their scheduled times."

Sometimes I wonder why I bother. *sigh*

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Good Habits - September 19

Boy, am I counting down the days until September is OVER. I don't know that we've ever felt as squeezed as we have this month. But payday will be on the 30th, and hopefully next month won't surprise us with more thousand-dollar-plus bills. (I'm going to have to reschedule the crowns for November so we can save up.)

Today I am TIRED, too. And I don't have much that I want to do... I did eat my vitamins and go for a walk this morning. I stayed on the lower loop and ran a half-lap, walked a lap and a half, ran a half-lap, walked a lap and a half, ran a half-lap, walked the next half-lap and then walked home again.

Well apparently I have NO running stamina. I always feel like I can walk ALLLL day, but unfortunately, that's apparently not going to cut it come time for the half-marathon. And it takes everything I've got to finish the half-lap. Well, nearly. I can still keep going with a walk afterward; don't have to sit down or anything. But I'm not even running fast! And it's ... maybe, maybe 300 yards. Not even once around the track. It feels kind of pathetic, to be honest. :(

I had a pancake for lunch. Leftovers from IHOP yesterday. What I found out is that if you want to bring pancakes home? Ask for them without butter. The butter makes them stick together and then they don't come apart and you get pancake-gobs instead of pancakes. The ones at the bottom of the stack came apart quite nicely, though.

But I ate the gobby one and it was still quite tasty!

ETA: Almost forgot - it looks like the Terrible Bleeding has stopped. Maybe for good! My face felt a little warm yesterday and the Hunk said it looked quite red. Perhaps my very first hot flash! Or not - I've been keeping a bottle of water by the bed at night because I've noticed that I wake up super-dry... my mouth feels pasty (though not like before) and my eyelids don't want to open. All sticky. I wonder if I've been sweating at night.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Good Habits - September 18

So yesterday I had chemo. My sub came in early (!!) so I had lots of time to set things up before I left, because I could leave the room for a few seconds to make photocopies or slip papers into mailboxes. That was pretty awesome.

I hadn't been sleeping well the past few nights. Our neighbor has a bunch of dogs that like to bark at 4 AM. Grrr. So in chemo I pulled the recliner back and took a nap for a good hour or so. Plus they had sandwiches out. I would've had a soda, but the Hunk wasn't entirely convinced that the sodas in the fridge were for us to enjoy. :P

After chemo we went to the not-a-mall and I walked laps. Wasn't too bad. After an hour I was ready to stop, though, so we came home. I ate AGAIN and then went to bed. I think I was in bed by ten.

Which of course meant that today I was up early. My body doesn't like to sleep in, particularly if it's had anything close to a full night's sleep (this is why the dogs are SO annoying; if they barked at midnight or 1 I could get back to sleep easily). But apparently either I was really tired or they didn't bark so much; I didn't get up until almost 7. Dad came over and we went to the park for a walk/jog. Mostly walking, though. Then he took us out to IHOP, and then we came home and I went to bed again.

And it's only Saturday. I'm starting to get nervous about Monday: fall retakes, senior retakes, fall sports photos after school, also an engagement reception / wedding shower thing, and then open house!

I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

And We'll Have Fun, Fun, Fun...

... 'til they take me out of ISI!

ISI stands for In-School Isolation. It is my absolutely favorite duty, and I am NOT being sarcastic. What I love about it is that it's an hour of nearly-uninterrupted peace and quiet. I've got probably about forty students in here - the group was so large that they moved it from a classroom to the auditorium - and other than a few flareups and the occasional reminder to keep feet down or to quit talking, things have been pretty ... well, FUN!

I know. I'm a terrible person. But good gravy, kiddoes! Just wear jeans that don't have holes all through them. You've known for over a month what the dress code is. So quitcher b*chin and just SIT. Mwahahaha!

Seriously. This is more peaceful than my classroom during my planning period. Granted, I have to keep my eyes open and look around a good bit. But I got all my emails sent out to the club sponsors. I didn't get my grading finished, but it's at least started. My department cohorts keep coming in... dunno if it's to check on me or on my lovely little Gremlins.

It just seems so hilarious, because they complain SOOOO much about how much work we have in class. And then in here, where quite often teachers haven't yet been informed (so there's nothing to do) they're just MISERABLE.

Good Habits - September 15

So it sounds like I am losing one of my seniors. Her dad kicked her out and she has had to go and live with her mom in Atlanta. I'm pretty bummed. And tired. And frustrated.

And I'm a little angry with my students. I had them working in groups and gave them a small, simple task and it took three times as long as I had allotted for it. Well, for SOME groups. But I figured I gave extra time and they just dawdled and chatted their way through it. Oooo, it steamed me.

Also? I have a student who wasn't here when we started. I handed him a copy of the book we're reading as a class. Twenty minutes later, he can't find it. WTF? He's like "someone musta took it off my desk." Well, now, who was supposed to be keeping track of that book, kiddo?

If I find out that I am being shorted books, group work will be OVER. There will BE no discussion. We will work in class each day and that will be ALL. We'll do grammar work for homework and I will have peace and quiet because they will be reading silently during the day. There will be NO signouts. AT ALL EVER.

Okay, so maybe it's gotten a bit past "a little angry."


And I haven't made my word count yet. But there's still so much to do. You know, I kind of hope they're losing books. Because then I get more time to do MY work. Heh heh heh...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Good Habits - September 14

Ahhhh... I forgot what I love about the 1984 unit: the peace and quiet of work days! ^.^ I'm always nervous for the first few days of it, though, before the students get the hang of the work.

I feel like I ought to have another planning period after this. :P When I have first period planning I don't seem to get anything done. Darnit! And now I feel like instead of writing I should be doing something "useful." Like grading. Or putting grades IN. Or marking notebooks. Or SOMETHING. You know?

And I'd like to go home and go to bed. To BED.

I've got soooo many post-drafts over at Epic Adventures. Nobody's commented on my latest one. Makes me wonder if nobody cares about whether firing teachers is a good idea or not, or if I'm saying things that everybody has heard somewhere else.

Right now I'm just marking time with my wrods. I wonder how many of my students are actually understanding what they read. They're so docile... they're at least pretending to read the book. We'll see. I don't have the oomph left in me to push them at the moment. Plus ... I feel like since we're just starting I've given them instruction and guidance, and now I need to see what they can do. But it makes me nervous!!

I have dance again tonight. We'll be starting a new choreography. I hope it isn't too difficult. I've seen it several times, and I know the music, so maybe that will help.

Ooo, I hate this whole packing-up-early thing. At least they don't line up at the door. And it's only one minute until the bell. But it TICKS ME OFF.

There will be consequences.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Good Habits - September 13

Ugh. Today just FLEW by. I got up, had a bowl of cereal, we went to school, dropped Kit (the new truck) off at the dealership to get cruise installed, then we had dinner with Mom and Dad, then went for a walk before coming home and now it's twenty of nine at night! WTF?!

So now I'm going to run my WoW daily and then soak in the tub (it was a four-mile walk, okay?) and then go to bed.

And DAMMIT, I left my cell phone over at Mom and Dad's. The Hunk is being MEAN. He says that I should have to walk all the way there to go get it. Meanie meano! AND he grinched at me for eating an Oreo. ONE OREO!

Honestly, if he didn't make such fantastic pancakes...

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Good Habits - September 12

Ugh. Well, in my defense, I've been away for two days. And I think I posted over on Epic Adventures on Thursday. Still, not the greatest.

I think I'm going to justify keeping this pretty brief because I have a st-ton of housework to do. AND grading and planning. I'm getting tired just thinking about it. :(

I've started a load of laundry and the truck is almost unloaded. I need to put clothes away and get my costumes back where they go. I should probably wash the red wig, too. I bet the black one is all a big snarl in the back, so it needs to be combed out. We've gotta go pick up Puppy from my parents' house.

My toothbrush and my vitamins are still packed away, so I'll take care of that once I get things put back where they go.

So much of my "writing" seems to be just trying to sort out everything ELSE that I have to do. I mean, it's a great way to un-jumble my thoughts... I also need to clean off my desk. And I guess this really is about just the HABIT of writing. But I dunno. Maybe it's in my nature not to be satisfied. Overall I think that's a good thing. I feel like these "this is what I need to remember to do today" posts are ... well, kind of cheating.

But at least they're something!

So, in order:

Finish unpacking the truck.
Put clothes away.
Clear off the sofa.
Clear off the desk.
Put grades in the computer.
Wash the wig. (I did this early so it'd have lots of time to dry. It's the first time I've washed it and I don't know how long drying takes, and I have to let it dry before I can brush it.)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Good Habits - September 8

So, yeah. I think I wasn't great this morning. But I did work on some yearbook stuff. I don't really feel like writing now. I need to write the copy for the graduation page for the supplement. Will that work? Why not, say I!
So much about graduation is a tradition: the speeches, the procession, the gowns. But what makes each ceremony unique is also what makes every ceremony special: the new graduates.

On a warm, breezy May evening, 256 LaFayette High students walked into Jack King stadium as seniors for the last time. They listened to speeches from their classmates - valedictorian [name] and salutatorian [name]. Tears flowed freely as they sang the alma mater together, wrapping arms around each other's shoulders. And as so many graduates had before them, when Principal [name] said "I present the graduating class of 2010," they threw their mortarboards into the air and cheered.

"[Inspirational quote]," said [principal].
There. Nice and fluffy. Just what the administration wants. :P

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


I am suuuuch a skinflint!

Good Habits - September 7

Today is going to be another long day. There's just so much to do. I've only got ten minutes to write before it's time to leave so Imonna hafta make it fast.

Fortunately I wrote out a list last night. :) I've already had breakfast and ate my vitamins and I brushed my teeth and I'm dressed - except for the wig. I'll take that along and probably put it on in the car before we get to school. I've got a comb in my bag. Might want to grab a barrette, just in case. You know, I don't think I've typed that word... ever. I talk about my barrettes a lot but seeing the word in print is weird! Mostly that I can't find the kind I like any longer. :( It's all pinchy-clips and the metal ones that lock when they bend. Anyway.

I hope I can put off my library trip until tomorrow. There's no way it's going to happen today. And tomorrow I ALSO have the visit from our rep. UGH, so much to do for the darn book.

Need to check our balance at the bank. Gonna send the Hunk to set up a savings account with direct debit at the start of the month; there's a bank not TOO far from the wig shop.

Oh, and I unloaded the dishwasher. ^.^

AND, I also got my real-post up yesterday. So all in all, I've done pretty well. Of course, the Hunk was solo on cleaning the house before dinner last night. :P

Monday, September 6, 2010

Good Habits - September 6

I feel like such a bad person, but I haven't been back by the house since we left this morning. And I got up a couple of hours before the Hunk! Well, I guess an hour or so. Anyway, I went for my walk this morning. Brushed my teeth, took my vitamins. Breakfast was cereal.

And I am so tired. That's all I can think to write. The Hunk has cleared up the kitchen as my parents are coming for dinner. I took a nap while he went to visit his grandfather and I'm STILL tired. Didn't get yesterday's blog post written, either. It's been a very full few days. I don't feel like I've had much of a break. Then again, I've spent a lot more time in bed ... it just hasn't felt like it.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Good Habits - September 5

Briefly, because (a) it's almost time to leave for Sunday School and I'm grody from my walk and I haven't eaten breakfast, and (b) I'm planning to write a 'real' blog post later today on Epic Adventures.

I did go on a walk again this morning. So that's Friday evening, Saturday morning, Saturday evening, and now Sunday morning. My feet are tingly!

I ate my vitamins but didn't yet brush my teeth. Gonna do that after breakfast.

We need to start a new savings account and auto-debit a few hundred dollars at the start of each month. That way come January we should have enough to cover the out-of-pocket for medical expenses again.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Good Habits - September 4

Oo, I'm tired.

So we're probably going to buy a truck on Monday. We spent today driving around and looking at different low-end V8s (well, the Hunk drove, and I sat in the passenger seat and wrote yearbook receipts). We found a used on that still has a good bit of its power train warranty, so we will probably get that one.

It was really nice out today, so I went for a walk. Two, actually. I went at a little after 9 this morning and at 8 this evening. So yeah, I am pretty pooped.

And I have been achey off and on today. That annoyed me. A little bit last night, too. Very unexpected, because the past couple of days have been otherwise really good.

Also? My period is all messed up. I started up again not this past Thursday but the Thursday before, which was only three weeks after my last start date (I know because it matched my chemo schedule). And my flow has been really wonky. Last night it was really heavy and then today it slowed down again. I have no idea why that might be.

Welcome to the wonderful world of chemo, right?

I hope to God we sell 500 yearbooks. *sigh*

Friday, September 3, 2010

Good Habits - September 3

So today I brushed my teeth and washed my face when I got up, and I fixed boiled eggs and a biscuit for breakfast. And now it is second period and the quickwrite is about school spirit - what does it look like in pictures? What causes people to have (and show!) school spirit?

Honestly, I don't know the answer to the second one. I really don't have a lot of school pride. I'm not down on my school or anything. I just think that education in general matters a whole lot more than what the school's colors are or how your team does. Professionally, I don't know that I would be proud even if our test scores shot up. And our graduation rate. Relieved, certainly. And delighted, of course. But I'd more be curious to see if we could pinpoint the reasons for it, and I'd want to see what we could learn about what's working, and how we can improve even further.

School pride seems incredibly comparative, and I just really don't care. I don't care if we "beat" other schools. In fact, I don't particularly want to. I want all schools to excel. Including ours, of course! I want all STUDENTS to succeed, even if they don't go to my school.

I'm frustrated. My planning period was cut short because of homeroom AND the pep rally, and I barely had time to sort my yearbook payments. I didn't get to write a single receipt.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Good Habits - September 2

So now we're in second period theoretically working on yearbook pages. Ads are due tomorrow. Beats are due tomorrow.

I need to make sure that I get stamps this afternoon. I need to turn in money to the office. I need to call the insurance people to find out about our cars. I need to check and see who else is going to be coming with me to the NCTE convention. And I need to find out what papers I need to file for here. And I need to fill out my doctor's appointment note for my next chemo thing.

And it looks like I'll have ad contracts to fax! yay!

My tummy hurts.

Now I'm on lunch and planning and I need to ... YAY! We already paid our insurance bill! EEE :D

I had two classes where they did a fifteen-minute freewrite. And you see how much writing I got done. AURGH.

I still need to find my lesson plans - my black clipboard is missing and that's very frustrating. I just yesterday realized that I've got two classes of English and there's only ONE class set of 1984, so I don't know WHAT I'm going to do. :( I'm going to check the library, first of all... then I think I'll offer extra credit to anyone who can get a copy on their own. Maybe. I dunno.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Good Habits - September 1

Brushed my teeth. Ate breakfast - and NOT McDonald's! And now I'm writing. I was okay this morning but now I'm tired again. We worked on the computers for the first time during Journalism I and it was just ... gah. Troubleshooting is a pain in the butt.

They're writing about their favorite fictional character. Sometimes I wonder why I bother to give them a topic. I mean, if I think about it I remember that I really do have a reason for the topics I choose and ... ugh. Phone.

But right now, when my throat feels rough and my knees and my jaw ache and I feel like I've been on my feet for ten hours, even though it's only been like two... it all seems like a waste of time.

I'll make it through the day without too much more trouble. They're reading aloud from children's books. it's nice. All I have to do is sit and listen! Unfortunately I can't find my clipboard. That kind of sucks. I need to call our car insurance and ask if we can have the green car taken off. We may need to do a complete switcheroo, but we'll have to see. *sigh*

*sigh* What part of "payment accepted before or after school" is so challenging? Seriously, people. I get tired of it.

Not everyone got to read their kids' books. But it was more than half the class, which is good.

I'm SO ready to go home and sleep some more. It's annoying to be so tired. I'll make it okay, but it's just frustrating. Everything takes more planning because I've got less time in which to get my stuff done.

Also? Still no answer from the insurance place. Seriously - wtf?

Today after school I need to write up a bunch of receipts. Hopefully by the time I get done with that I'll be able to go home.