Elastic Basket for my Peaches

I also have a website: www.lizhightower.com

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Weird Week

***I have been lax in writing blog entries. This one was started a week ago and pertains to the last week in April. ***

This is a very strange week. Monday was fairly normal at school cramming the kids for the Math TAKS test the following day. Then that night it rained like it must have in the days of Noah. Young Life was canceled so luckily I didn't have to leave the house. The next morning, my roommate tells me that some schools were closed. It seemed pretty much every district other than mine was closed for severe flooding. It turns out both my friend, Ann's and my friend, Andres's houses got flooded. Please pray for them esp. Ann since she owns her home and does not have flood insurance.

Because of the crazy weather, our district postponed the Math TAKS test that was suppoed to be that day. It really threw us all off- kids and teachers. Then the school district announced that absences would not be counted that day for students or teachers. Now, why did I show up?

The real test happened that Wednesday and we didn't get out of school until 4pm even though our students were finished way before that. We just had to sit there.

On Thursday and Friday, the 4th and 5th graders were taking their TAKS tests. This meant the third graders who normally share their hallway, were banished to random other parts of the school. On Thursday, I had about 30 kids at the end of the Kindergarten hallway. Not ideal at all! We pretty much just watched movies. And we still had to stay at school an hour longer than usual. UGH!

On Friday, I had only my 20 kids in one of the computer labs. Again, another movie day. What was the point of even coming to school? Luckily the day was cut short by the faculty basketball game. I had been looking forward to this all week. I had fun like last year but I kept getting double and triple teamed. I guess they remembered my skills from last year. Some of the people definitely had no basketball experience. I tried to set a pick on one guy and he gave me a sweaty bear hug. Eww! Disgusting! I had practiced the day before at the gym but it was pointless since we played with a ball smaller than a women's ball and on an eight foot goal. Overall it was fun to get out and play. Good end to a crazy week.

Monday, April 27, 2009

free time doesn't feel so free

Normally on Monday nights I have a Bible study for Young Life. Tonight it was canceled and it's raining like the times of Noah and the great flood. So much for my idea of going to the gym to practice a little basketball for the big faculty game Friday. And now, I am left with unexpected free time. And there in lies my problem.

I have a little more than a month left of school. It feels pretty surreal. There is a lot that goes into checking out of my classroom at the end of the year. Right after school ends, I am moving out of my house and into my parents' house. Since I still have a month before both happen almost simultaneously, I really should start packing, cleaning and throwing away a little at a time. Unfortunately knowing what you should do and actually doing it are two completely different things. And I tend to be a bit of a procrastinator. I wrote almost all my college papers the night before and almost always pack late into the night before I go on a trip. I find it very hard to be productive when I have free time.

I pack a lot of scheduled activities in my week and get a lot done. I spend a good portion of the week at school, Young Life or hanging out with friends. But when I do have free time, I just can't bear to do anything terribly productive. In fact, yesterday was the first time I'd made a real trip to the grocery store since Spring Break. It's not that I don't have the free time, I do have some but I tend to use it more as a recovery from my otherwise busy schedule. Maybe if I scheduled "clean my room" or "go to the grocery store" at a specific date and time, I would do it. But then again knowing myself, I probably wouldn't.

I have a dream of writing books for children or humorous memoirs for adults someday. I don't see this happening until I find a way to gain better control of my free time. When given an expanse of unaccounted for time, large or small, I tend to spend most of it watching TV, taking naps, surfing the internet or reading books. None of these are particularly bad, but they definitely don't classify as being productive. I guess if I had some sort of "office" I went to for a predetermined amount of time to write, I could do it. That is presupposing that I could make a living writing which has yet to be proven. I did recently read that Dr. Seuess's first book was rejected by publishers 27 times. Dr. Suess is arguably one of the best loved and most prolific children's book writers in history. If he could go through all that rejection and not give up, the least I could do is give it a shot, right?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Scowling at construction workers

My street has been under construction for several months and it has been a huge hassle. For some reason, they find it necessary to begin work before 7am on Saturdays. This should clearly be illegal. They've also blocked off our street for months. Our trash has not been picked up in weeks because there is no place to put it where the garbage men can get to it. Annoying!

We used to have a little parking lot type thing at the front of our house. It could fit five cars and was a super convienent place to park. This was destroyed pretty much the first day of construction. They promptly deposited a seven foot mound of dirt in front of our house and various construction equipment that I couldn't name even if I tried. Our street has been closed and we've resorted to parking in the backyard of the abandoned house next door. It's pretty hillbilly and as the construction has moved further down our street, consuming more and more parking, m our make-shift parking lot has become more and more crowded.

This has angered the crazy bird lady who lives behind us. She uses this backyard to feed her beloved pigeons and seems to feel that our parking woes are less important than feeding what some people refer to as flying rats. When we first started parking back there, she wrote crazy handmade signs on old dinner plates or scraps of cardboard that proclaimed that there is to be no parking in the little concrete square where she feeds her feathered friends. I think she's given up for now given the large number of cars parked back there now. It is simply too crowded for the birds.

It's only recently become clear that our parking places have been permanently destroyed. They've finally poured the concrete on our street and I can see the telltale rebarb signs that there will be a large curb in front of our house instead of a parking pad. This is very inconvienent. Thankfully we will only be living here for a month and a half. Apparently we will be parking behind our neighbor's house for the rest of our time here. Ugh. I am not even sure that the street will be finished before we move out. This will make the whole process a lot more interesting. Oh well. There's not much I can do about it. I do try to give the construction workers dirty looks but it doesn't seem to be changing anything. I know it's not their faults but it makes me feel a little better.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

I still exist

I have not blogged in a while. This is partly because I've been busy and partly because I'm lazy. Last weekend I felt like I was going nonstop. On Friday night, my teacher friends and I went out to eat and then watched "The Fast and the Furious." I saw an abnormal amount of people I know. I saw three of my Young Life kids from three years ago. I saw a fellow Young Life leader that I volunteer with now. Then, to top it all off, we saw two of my students when we were at the movie. I love my students but it's weird to see them outside of school. I was going to hide, but Helen yelled out their names so they came over for hugs even though I'd seen them only a few hours earlier.

On Saturday, I had good old Saturday tutorials in the morning. Yuck! Then at night I went to my roommates' sister's wedding. Since I live with two sisters, our place was wedding central: housing out of town guests and serving as site of fancy brunches. My roommate, Sarah made the wedding cake at our house so I suppose bakery would be an apt title as well. At the wedding, reception I was in charge of running the cotton candy machine. Despite my very long list of jobs I've done in a wedding, running a cotton candy machine was something I'd never done. I love doing things I've never done before! It was harder than I expected. I have a new respect for carnies now.

I helped clean up after the wedding until 11pm and woke up at 6pm to ride my bike 64 miles the next morning. The ride was sponsored by McDonald's so we were sent on our way by a man in a Ronald McDonald costume. We were told that Hamburgler and Grimace would be there but I didn't see them. What a letdown!

After the ride, I went to my best friend, Sarah's to get cleaned up and hang out. Then I had to go give a speech at my church about mission work.

Overall my weekend felt pretty packed but it was fun. I tend to prefer being busy over not having enough to do. If I have too much freetime, I always seem to waste it.
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