Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Differentiated Instruction for the Inclusive Classroom...

Tonight was the last night of my first graduate school class. I'm excited to be done but wish I didn't have to wait so long (this fall) to take another class. I LOVE learning, especially about something I am passionate about and interested in. When people would ask me how my class was going I would say I love the class but hate the work. Lol. It's true. I loved going to class and having discussions about inclusion and other issues in special education, but boy did I hate the work. We had so many projects/papers/observations ect due, not to mention the reading. I dreaded Sunday because that was the only day I had to do my reading. (I know Sunday isn't the ideal day to do homework, but that's the way it worked out.) Mike would be sleeping in bed next to me and I would be so bitter that I couldn't sleep too.

I remember in high school we had to do a 5-8 page (double spaced) research paper. We had several months to do it in and lots of due dates to insure we didn't wait till the last minute to do it. I stressed about it so much how will I ever be able to write that much? But I did it. Then for my advanced college writing class I had to write a 10 page (double spaced( research paper. Again I had all semester, lots of stress and long nights. But I did it. Now in my grad class I had to do an observation with a detailed analysis, no page requirement but had to be single spaced (double spaced is a thing of my past apparently.) I spent forever on it and it was 10 pages single spaced. That equals 20 pages double spaced! My 17 year old self was super impressed... And so was my professor, I got 100/100 on it! I also got perfect scores on all my other assignments. Not to bad! It's the first class I have ever aced.

I put in a lot of hard work and effort and it all paid off. Let this be a lesson to my future children. You can do things you think you can't. You get out of school what you put in. Learning is a life long process, never stop perusing your education in one way or another!

I'm very grateful for this chance I have to take these classes and purse higher education.

(also this is my first blog post from my iPhone. I feel kind of cool!)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Saying Goodbye and Hello...

If you know me well, you know how strongly I dislike driving. I understand it is essential and I do it, but I don't enjoy it and sometimes it makes me uncomfortable. So I was 3 weeks away from 20 when I finally got my drivers license. Soon after that the freedom and independence that driving brought me made me want to buy my own car and take it out to school at BYU-I. My parents were a tough sale. As I was a poor collage student I had very little money to spend on a car and would need their help to buy a my own car. After weeks of talking and convincing my mom and I set out to look for some used cars in the area. It was pretty disheartening and there wasn't much in my price range. Finally a few weeks before I was to go back to college we found Ginny (named after Ginny Weasley), my little green car. She wasn't much as the worlds standards go, and my brothers and dad made fun of her. But I didn't care. She was mine and I was going to work hard to pay for her.

After 3 years I had paid back my parents for her and the she was really mine. I was so proud to pay her off all on MY own. My car payments came from the money I was making, not Mike, and I took pride in that. Well A year ago the A/C stopped working in her. Last summer was a hot one for everyone but for me in my non A/C car it was REALLY HOT! I decided I couldn't do that again this summer and went to see how much it would cost to fix her. I found out it was going to be $1000! yikes! That is more than she is worth. So I decided just to deal with the heat this summer. When I went to pick her up I mentioned to the mechanic that I was planning to sale her later in the year so I wasn't going to fix her. He told me he knew someone who would buy her from more than she was worth (especially without the A/C working.) That set the ball in motion. Now less that 72 hours later Ginny has a new owner and I have a new car, who still is nameless.

It is exciting to get a new car, but was a little sad to say goodbye to MY Saturn.

Things I will miss (memories):
-The independence having my own car brought me
-Cross country trip to Utah with my mom and listening to Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows on the way there
-Driving my roommates around Rexburg
-Love notes and flowers left on my car by my future husband
-Blasting Emerson Drive, High School Musical 2, Rascal Flatts, Carry Underwood and Hairspray in the summer with the windows down and wind in my hair
-Driving cross country home from Utah with my mom and admiring my new engagement ring and how lovely it was when it glistened in the sun of the Nebraska plains.
-Getting lost all over fairfield country and just praying I'd be able to find my way home
-Reliability, knowing she would get me to work and home safely everyday.
-Power trunk (my new trunk I have to open with a key or pop from up front-no remote)

My New Friend. A 2008 Toyota Corolla CE. Again it is nothing fancy by the worlds standards but for me it is just what I wanted and in the right price range :)

Things I will enjoy:
-Window Locks (especially when the twins are in the car with me)
-Power Mirrors
-Ipod jack
-Low milage
-AMAZING gas milage
-Large trunk
-Rides slightly higher than Ginny
-Bigger back seat (the kids I babysit will appreciate this as well. )


Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Sunday

Happy Easter. Life as always is busy around here. (Although I did have two weeks off of school a few weeks ago and then have a 4 day weekend this weekend) But even then it seems like something is always interrupting my plans to catch up on life. This year Easter snuck upon me. I usually make easter sugar cookies and spend tons of time decorating them. I decided that was not in the cards this year. I still needed a treat for my YW for my Easter lesson. That is when I remember these pretty little treats. Chocolate covered peanut butter eggs!! SOOO DELICIOUS! These things are truly to die for. My grandma use to make tons (but much, much larger) and sell them around Easter time. Everyone in town loved them and she made a decent amount of money. Dying for the recipe? Sorry, it is a secret! I was sworn to secrecy before I was given the recipe. I think it is kind of fun to have a real "secret family recipe!" Honestly you could probably look up a recipe for chocolate covered buckeyes and it would be VERY similar.

As I mentioned I taught an Easter lesson today. I was really grateful to have been able to ponder on the last week of the Savior and really think about what I wanted to share with the YW. I found this video clip on youtube. It is most of the talk entitled "None Were With Him" by Elder Holland. This is probably one of my favorite talks. It is so powerful and moving the way he describes those lonely moments in the Garden that Christ spent so utterly alone. Then the glorious resurrection that Easter morn when he broke the bonds of death forever. At the end of his talk Holland says...

"This Easter week and always, may we stand by Jesus Christ “at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in, even until death,” for surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone."

Such powerful words. I hope my Savior never feels that I have left him alone. That I have looked to things of the world more than I have looked to him and his teachings. I rededicate myself to living as a disciple of Christ, to sharing the good news of HIS restored gospel by word and dead.

After church Mike and I exchanged Easter baskets. Which consisted of Mike searching all around the house looking for his basket that I put together and hid 8 days ago. Then me putting together my basket with the things that I may or may not have picked out for myself, while Mike watched at my basket making skills. This year it's ok that I made my own Easter Basket because he has been super, super busy at work and then studying on top of that. Then he spent Saturday (when he usually gets the stuff for my basket) looking at cars with me. So I'd say he did a pretty good job this year!

We spent Easter lunch with friends and went to a near by park to enjoy the beautiful weather. The tulips are AMAZING right now. It was so lovely to spend time outside on a beautiful spring day with my friends and my husband. This is the third spring that Mike has spent studying for the CFA. He spends his weeknights and weekends locked up in his office studying. This means that we hardly ever to get to enjoy the spring weather together. So when we are able to go for a walk, hold hands and look at the beautiful spring flowers together I am as giddy as a school girl. What a wonderful Easter it was.... and the best part? I didn't have to clean my house like a maniac to host dinner guests, worry about a dinner menu or do dished after everyone is done.... SCORE!