Tuesday, September 30, 2008

I owe you guys some hypothetical coin

I totally passed that exam.


I really AM surprised but DAMN I'm excited. I didn't exactly ace it but I PASSED!!!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Stupid grad school

I had to leave school early today to take a proctored exam for my Masters program (it was scheduled at my local university). This test covered everything I've learned since I started the program almost a YEAR ago--like 4 classes' worth. Now, I'll be the first to say that I didn't review as comprehensively as I should have--but even so, how do you study for THAT? Anyway, our tuition covers the cost of a student taking the exam up to two times for free (after that, the student has to pay the fee)--and thank God, because I'm pretty sure that I'll need to take that bad boy again. Yes, that's right--Jennifer the Super Student, who never failed an exam except once in college because, well, I slept in and MISSED the exam, has most likely failed a test. (I'll pause here for a collective gasp.) It was HARD, yo.

Now granted, this test is simply pass/fail, and I did know a good portion of the answers so it's basically going to come down to guesswork--did I guess enough questions correctly to push me over to the "pass" side? I'll find out later this week but, well, my instinct says that I failed. And that's not good. I'll just look at this one as a practice test, I guess. (Ironically, I took 2 "practice tests" prior to this one and passed them both--but not exactly with flying colors.)

Grad school is mad hard.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Light as a feather

(By the way--raise your hand if you used to play "light as a feather, stiff as a board" at sleepovers. That game was the shit.)

So anyway: I've lost 10 lbs since I started karate. I'm now within 5 lbs of where I was when I started my crazy pills and within 10 of where I really want to be. Part of it is the karate itself, of course--but more than that, karate makes me want to BE stronger, healthier and more fit, so I've been walking more and even doing some light (very light) arm weights. Plus, did I mention that our classes are conducted in front of a wall-length mirror (kind of like ballet)--which can be pretty damn depressing if you're not happy with how you look but are forced to stare at yourself for an hour 2-3 times a week. It can be quite the motivator, let me tell you.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Elbow update

I haven't posted about my elbow for a while. I guess it's about as healed as it's going to get. It does (as you might guess) ache a little after a particularly rigorous karate class (especially on the days when I'm punching an actual bag as opposed to the air, although even those air punches can leave me sore if I extend my arm too much or throw them too hard).

I am not, however, totally back to normal, and I don't think I ever will be. My arm now locks up when I try to move it from bent to straight (it often happens after I brush my teeth, for example, when I go to rinse out the toothbrush). It's fine once I force it the rest of the way, and it doesn't hurt or anything--it just kind of freezes in place before it's totally extended. And I'm still building the strength back up in that arm (not that I was particularly strong to begin with, LOL). But otherwise, I think I'm good to go. =-)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Am I the only who didn't know...

...that ants are crazy-attracted to coffee grounds?

I learned that one the hard way today. BELIEVE DAT.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Pretty major news (for real)

Some of you may remember a couple of years ago, when Ron Clark was the featured speaker at one of our corporate events to kick off the new school year. He is an incredibly motivating speaker, teacher and individual--getting to meet him at the book signing was easily the highlight of that year.


Last year, he opened up the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta. He's a teacher there and every other teacher is also a Teacher of the Year. By graduation, these inner-city students will have visited 6 of the 7 continents. This is a great video that provides an inside-glimpse of his school and its philosophy (it's 9 minutes but it's so incredibly worth it):


Just watching this video inspires me. But as of today, I don't have to settle for watching the video.


AND MY SCHOOL IS PAYING FOR IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last year, my school sent a group of teachers. I didn't get to go and I was, truly, heartbroken. However, the teachers who DID go came back so fired up that this year, TWO groups of teachers are going--and I found out today that I was part of the first group. I almost cried. This opportunity means so much to me, and frankly, I needed a shot of Happy right about now.

I go the week before Thanksgiving and I cannot be happier. This could truly be a life-changing experience.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Have I mentioned that some people have ENTIRELY too much time on their hands?

Still, it's funny.


Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I got this email from a teacher yesterday. I'm going to modify it and use this in some way with my 5th graders. Check it out (especially the FAQs). It's a lesson in researching the validity of Internet sites and not believing everything you read online.

My 2nd period research class will be discussing internet safety and accuracy this week.I am having the students research a false website on the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus.They will be collecting data and facts from this site and posting awareness posters about this "endangered" species.I won't be revealing the truth until this Friday (the 19th)-unless I have a student research the truth earlier. Could you please join me in this lesson by playing along?Thanks so much and if you'd like to check out this site: http://zapatopi.net/treeoctopus/

Monday, September 15, 2008

Totally random crap

1) I had a bug fly up my nose today. Has that ever happened to you? I don't recommend it. It's way worse than your eye, ear or other bodily orifice.

2) Every now and then, church marquees make me laugh. This one had a very relevant political message: "You must be saved. I am God and I approve this messaage."


3) While my kids were writing an essay today, one of them asked me how to spell "unicorn." Now, the topic was "a unique aspect of our school" so I couldn't really see how unicorns would apply, but I figured that maybe she had a really good simile or metaphor going so I slowly spelled the word out.

At this point, about 3/4th of the class stopped writing and looked at me very bewilderedly.

"Um, Miss K, that's not how you spell it," one student said.

"Yuh-huh," I insisted very maturely. "U-N-I-C-O-R-N."

Suddenly, another student started laughing really hard. "Miss K, they said UNIFORM, not UNICORN."

Maybe you had to be there, but we laughed for like 5 minutes.

I guess the hearing is the first thing to go.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

She hearts me, she really, really hearts me!

I'm being a rebel and not passing this award on to 7 other people because most of the blogs I'd bestow it upon have already received it. However, I will follow one of the rules and mention the person I received it from--Nikki. So thanks!

Things have been crazy-busy, namely:

1) Work (teaching)--back in the daily grind of lesson planning and paper-grading.
2) Work part 2--I'm the lead 5th grade teacher this year and holy shit, there's a LOT more work involved with that role. And trust me, I've already MORE than earned the puny stipend that comes along with this esteemed position.
3) School (Masters stuff)--AS ALWAYS, I procrastinated and now I have to put in some major hours to get everything done by the end of the semester. Crap.
4) Karate--class twice a week plus practice time was a helluva lot easier during the summer, that's for sure.

My days are becoming much more structured--gone are my daily naps (poor me); instead, I have to actually block out time in my daily planner for my Masters work and karate time. I can't remember a time when I was THIS busy. Hell, I haven't even had time to see the Electrician in the last week because we were both so busy during the week and our schedules didn't match up on Friday (and then he had his daughter the rest of the weekend). I HAVE seen LCB but I'll spare you the details.

I hope to see the Electrician soon but frankly, I have a lot of other stuff going on. Holy shit! I'm actually putting my LIFE before a GUY!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

What could POSSIBLY go wrong?

I begin training with these in about 3 weeks. (They're called "sai.")


Oh my God, this show has been on all summer and I have just NOW discovered it. With fifty grand at stake, contestants attempt to complete an "extreme obstacle course" and get knocked on their asses in glorious fashion. Now this in itself is surprisingly entertaining, but it's the running (no pun intended) commentaries by the two male hosts (John Anderson and John Henson) that accompany the action that really has me cracking up. A couple of times, I was laughing so hard that I actually started to cough and subsequently choke (which I guess isn't saying a whole lot, since I'm still recovering from bronchitis--but seriously, the show is just funny as hell).

Does anyone else love this show (and it's "big balls") as much as I do?

Monday, September 08, 2008

Not to toot my own horn, but...

From http://people.howstuffworks.com/mad-genius.htm

Is insanity the secret companion to ­genius? Though we can't very well perform psychological examinations on those who are long dead, that hasn't stopped historians from speculating about the mental conditions of deceased geniuses by interpreting their personal letters, their works and others' accounts. It turns out some of the world's greatest geniuses were quite mad. In fact, some scientists claim that a far greater percentage of creative types (poets, painters, musicians and the like) have been afflicted with bipolar disorder than the general ­population. Some of the world's most renowned creative minds, including writers Mary Shelley, Virginia Woolf, and Ernest Hemingway; composers Irving Berlin and Sergey Rachmaninoff; and painters Paul Gauguin and Jackson Pollock are all believed to have suffered from the illness.

I'm just sayin'. ;)

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Hell yeah

Well, it's not the New Kids of old...but I feel a huge comeback coming on. Tell me this doesn't sound like the stuff that's on the radio today. They're about to win over a whole new generation.

PS--to play without interference from music player down below, just hit the pause (double bar) button on the player (upper left, I think)

Court of Public Opinion

So LCB came over last night JUST to visit me for a while. He drove 40 minutes (round trip) to sit and hold my hand for like 30 (LOL, I TOLD you I was a baby). He even brought gifts of medicine and chicken noodle soup (which I'm pretty sure he shoplifted, since he had everything in his pants pockets). And unlike Renee's theory, NO, he didn't have a dirty "ulterior motive." He didn't even TRY. The raunchiest he got was when I asked him to check the Jello in the fridge. "Can you check and see if it's hard yet?" I drowsily asked--and, well, NO ONE would be able to let that comment fly without the obvious retort.

Like I said--yes, he wasn't the best boyfriend in the world and as much as I might want to, we could never get back together because I could never trust him...but he IS a damn good friend. I'm the first to admit that I'm a total pain in the ass when I'm sick, and the fact that he drove from the next town at 9:00 on a "school night" JUST TO willingly subject himself to that meant a whole lot to me. No, none of this makes up for or takes away the pain of the cheating--and trust me, everything isn't puppies and butterflies. There's still some resentment under the surface that occasionally pops up when we're hanging out. But to me, that's a separate issue from the friendship. It's like I'm dealing with two different people--Shawn the friend and Shawn the LCB. He fucked up, for sure. I'm not excusing the cheating and lying part at all...and yeah, he broke my heart. But maybe as my friend, he can also heal it.

Even MOM doesn't "hate him" anymore. Whoo hoo!!!!

Monday, September 01, 2008

Summer cold

I should first note: although I am, by nature, a very sickly individual, it's been MONTHS since I've had the cold or flu. I don't think I was sick ALL SUMMER. For me, that's a pretty big deal. Having said that--I got bitch-slapped with a summer cold yesterday.

As they often do, it came on fast. The headache started in church, but I blamed it on the heavy perfume of the lady in front of me. A few hours later, I was hanging out with my little sister (Big Brothers Big Sisters) at Build a Bear, and I casually noted that my throat hurt. At Wendy's, my nose started to run and my head was stuffed up. By the time I dropped her off about an hour after THAT, I was in full-blown cold status, including chills and aches (or is that the flu? I can never tell them apart).

The funny part is that AFTER I took both my Seroquel and my Tylenol Cold Night meds last night, I flipped on Comedy Central to wait for them to kick in--and found a really funny comedian I had never seen before. Normally, my Seroquel takes effect (HARD) in about 20 minutes (not to mention the nighttime cold meds)--but this time, I decided to try to fight them. I wanted to watch this hour-long special, damn it! Oh my God, it was like going on an acid trip (I assume, LOL). My vision was blurring and doubling. I saw pink elephants floating across the room and happy little fairies sitting on the edge of my bed. At one point, I think the comedian looked out from the TV and advised, "Go to bed, dumbass."

I only made it through about half of the special.

I woke up at 4 am--almost exactly four hours after I took that last dose of nighttime meds. (They weren't kidding when they tell you to take 2 caplets "every 4 hours".) My throat was on fire, I couldn't breathe out of my nose and my head was so stuffed up that I'd lost hearing in my right ear.

Thank goodness I have Monday (today) off. I figure some around-the-clock sleeping (with breaks for lesson planning and paper grading, although that last one can wait if it HAS to) should make Tuesday at least tolerable for me.

But let's look at the positive side--like I said, I can't even remember the last time I was sick before this. My immune system is getting better!