Saturday, June 16, 2012

Digital Designs

More digital designs.  These are quotes that are favorites of mine.  My words to live by, if you will.  I'm loving learning Photoshop.  It's unreal the designs one can make.  I now make all the posters for my classroom, plus loads of other things for the kids.  Next year with the grant I received I hope to teach some of them Photoshop.  Love it!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Digital Scrapbooking

I recently came across the most awesome website, Deviant Scrap.  I fell in love with the scrap kits, the wonderful elements, everything.  It opened up a whole new world of expressing myself in my photoshop creations.

I've put a few up here, and want to continue to post my layouts.   I love this refreshing hobby!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Sometimes I Think the Kids Get It More Than We Do

The other day in class we read "The Sneetches," a poem by Dr. Seuss.  It deals with how we treat people who are different than we are.  The class was given a short essay to write describing what they felt was the theme of this poem.  One of my students wrote:

The Sneetches
What does the poem, The Sneetches, mean? I think that it means that it doesn't matter what race, religion, country, and even gender you are. All that matters is that we are all humans and should not go against each other. Sure we may disagree at certain times, but it doesn't mean that you have to beat up or even kill that person just because of what they think. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. You also shouldn't think that your race or skin color is the best because that will corrupt you and make you look down at other people and think of them as less than human like what Adolf Hitler did to the Jews. He hated them so much that he would not even waste bullets on them and used gas on them instead to kill them. We should not fight against each other and should cherish each other. War is a foolish mistake that we as humans make. Again, I think that the theme of The Sneetches is that it doesn't matter what race, skin, religion, country, or gender you are and that we are all humans no matter what.

When they get it, like this student obviously did, it makes me feel like no matter how hard teaching is, THIS is why we teach.  These kids are our future, and if the future is left in the hands of students like mine, I look forward to it.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Each Day is a Gift

A friend emailed this to me, and it was so valuable to me that I decided it to present it to my class.  I was amazed at the impact it also had on them.  They realized that if we can find things to complain about every day, we can spend that time finding things to rejoice in as well.  We did an exercise where we each presented the good things about life.  They amazed me with their answers.  These kids rule my world!

Here is the email:

A 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o'clock, with his hair fashionably combed and shaved perfectly, even though he is legally blind, moved to a nursing home today. 
His wife of 70 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After 
many hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he smiled sweetly when told his room was ready. 
As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description
 of his tiny room, including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on his window. 
I love it,' he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just
 been presented with a new puppy. 
Mr. Jones, you haven't seen the room; just wait.'
'That doesn't have anything to do with it,' he replied.
Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time.
Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is
arranged ... it's how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. 
'It's a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice;
 I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with theparts of my body that no longer work, or get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do.Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open, I'll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I've stored away.. Just for this time in my life. 
Old age is like a bank account. You withdraw from what you've put in.
So, my advice to you would be to deposit a lot of happiness in the bank
 account of memories! 
Thank you for your part in filling my Memory Bank.
I am still depositing.
'Remember the five simple rules to be happy:
1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worries.
3. Live simply.
4. Give more.
5. Expect less.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Some Kind of Wonderful

How many people are blessed to be able to call their work their life's calling as well?  I love teaching.  I love seeing kids learn, grow, and become wonderful young people and productive adults.  I was on Facebook (big surprise) this morning and just marveled at the fantastic young people who used to be students of mine.  They are working, raising families, and doing great things.  It makes me so proud, so priviledged to be able to wake up each morning and teach.  God, thank you so much for guiding me in the direction of teaching when I was young.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Amazing Grace

My recent bout with the H1N1 virus was a doozy. I have never been so sick, so virally sick, in my life. I felt like I had no control, and I was fortunate enough to have the best sister in the world come over and actually take care of me for a week. For a person as fiercely independent as me, allowing Andrea to basically make all decisions and just take care of me, you know how sick I had to have been.

Today is the first day that I really feel like myself again. No more dizziness, high fever, hacking cough (ok, just a little hacking cough)body aches and chills, this was the worst flu I've ever had. It consumes a person.

A couple of days ago, when Andi had to rush me to the ER because I was so dizzy and out of it I couldn't really even think, I asked God to please, just please guide me through this. I couldn't really even answer the basic questions the doctor was asking me, and I could see by the worried look on my sister's face that she was scared as well. There is something about giving a situation so totally to God that is liberating, in a way. I had to trust in him, because I, the person who always has to be in control, wasn't able to function. It was scary, but God is good, he is so very good, and I am so glad he is the guiding force in my life.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

It's About Time...

Haven't updated in a while. I've been so busy with the start of school. I have a wonderful new class, probably one of the best I've ever had. They are so excited about learning, so accepting of the new responsibilities they have as sixth graders, such lovers of life. This is my 26th year of teaching, and I am so blessed to be able to say that I love it as much as I did when I first started. And I'm better, too!

I was thinking the other day, as I lay in bed with the flu, about just how fortunate I am to have found my purpose in life. So many people wander aimlessly along life's road, never truly knowing what they are doing, what their purpose is. God has blessed me with this understanding, and, as I get older and hopefully wiser, I realize just how wonderful I feel doing what I love.

Rumi once said, "Let the beauty of what you love be what you do." Yep. That's it in a nutshell.

Thank you, God, for all you've given me, and thank you for all you are.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

I Didn't Know My Own Strength

As many of you know, the past few years have been so very difficult for me. Losing a best friend, losing the love of my life, then losing my mom, coupled with finding out and dealing with lupus; I'm ashamed to say that I lost hope, that I gave up. I gained all that weight and was so disconnected from who I used to be, from all that I wanted to be. And I just didn't care.

I don't know what turned it around. Perhaps, in my darkest time, reaching out to my creator, he intervened, and gave me the strength to fight back. Or, perhaps, he helped me find that strength within myself. I feel stronger than ever now, have lost thirty pounds (yes, I have a long way to go), and have reconnected with the things that matter most to me: family, helping others, teaching, and most importantly, God.

I'm glad I finally, as my friend would have said, "Pulled my head out." It was getting dark in there, and it wasn't very comfortable. For those of you who are and have always been there for me, I thank you from the bottom of my heart, and look forward to sharing the rest of my life with you.

This song, by Whitney Houston, really tells it, doesn't it?

Whitney Houston - I Didn't Know My Own Strength

Lost touch with my soul
I had no where to turn
I had no where to go
Lost sight of my dream,
Thought it would be the end of me
I thought I’d never make it through
I had no hope to hold on to,
I thought I would break

I didn’t know my own strength
And I crashed down, and I tumbled
But I did not crumble
I got through all the pain
I didn’t know my own strength
Survived my darkest hour
My faith kept me alive
I picked myself back up
Hold my head up high
I was not built to break
I didn’t know my own strength

Found hope in my heart,
I found the light to life
My way out the dark
Found all that I need
Here inside of me
I thought I’d never find my way
I thought I’d never lift that weight
I thought I would break

I didn’t know my own strength
And I crashed down, and I tumbled
But I did not crumble
I got through all the pain
I didn’t know my own strength
Survived my darkest hour
My faith kept me alive
I picked myself back up
Hold my head up high
I was not built to break
I didn’t know my own strength

There were so many times I
Wondered how I’d get through the night I
Thought took all I could take

I didn’t know my own strength
And I crashed down, and I tumbled
But I did not crumble
I got through all the pain
I didn’t know my own strength
Survived my darkest hour
My faith kept me alive
I picked myself back up
Hold my head up high
I was not built to break
I didn’t know my own strength

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Southern California Fire Volunteer Information

For those of you that want to volunteer to help the fire fighters or volunteer at a temporary shelter, here is a number to call and places to volunteer:

Call to donate:
American Red Cross - Greater Los Angeles Area: 866-548-8226

In addition, before you drop off anything at a fire station, call 323-881-2411 to see what is needed.

Fire Stations that are accepting food and water donations:


Red Cross Evacuation Shelter
Verdugo Hills High School
10625 Plainview Ave
Tujunga, CA 91042

Marie Kerr Park
2723 Rancho Vista Blvd
Palmdale, CA 93551
(661) 267-5551

Golden Valley High School
27051 Robert C Lee Parkway
Santa Clarita CA 91350

La CaƱada High School.
4463 Oak Grove Dr,
La Canada Flintridge, CA 91011-3797

Thanks for any help you can give.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Weight Loss

I've hit the quarter century mark in my weight loss quest. Yep, 25 pounds. Gotta keep it going.