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Monday, July 6, 2015

Weekend Recap: 4th of July

Happy Monday!!  I hope your weekends were full of barbecue, fireworks, and all things red, white, and blue.  Not that mine were...but according to Instagram, my 4th of July activities aren't the norm (read: they are nonexistent).  We did squeeze in a little bit of fun, though.

My dad won Phillies tickets from some raffle tickets he bought from a neighborhood kid on a whim, so my family and I went to see one of their games on Thursday night, which even included a fireworks show to follow.  Now apparently the Phillies are one of the worst teams in baseball right now and apparently they were playing the Brewers, who are also pretty bad.  Needless to say, the actual playing part was less-than-impressive, but let's be real...who goes to a baseball game to watch the players?  I go to watch the Phanatic (their crazy mascot) and walk around and steal some of Walker's crab fries.  I was also in it for the fireworks.

The game ended up getting WAY more intense than anyone really wanted it to (we just wanted the fireworks!) and the Phillies lost at the bottom of the eleventh inning.  If you ask me, softball really knows what it's doing with the whole seven innings thing.  Nine is just too long...and don't even talk about eleven!

The rest of our weekend was pretty low-key.  Usually Walker and I venture to Virginia for the 4th of July, but he wasn't given Friday off, so we would have had to drive down Saturday morning amidst all the other crazies.  Traffic going past the DC area is already horrendous, let's not add in a holiday.  We're planning to join them next weekend for our usual 4th family fun.

Piper celebrated, of course, and we grilled out with my family on Saturday night.  The local ice cream shop also replaced their typical "rainbow" jimmies with patriotic ones.  

Now it's back to work for me - just two weeks of writing curriculum for the district.  Tell me what you did for this festive holiday weekend!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Life Lately

Well first of all, I'm happy to report that Summertime Kate is officially here and back in the blogging business!  It took a little while to unearth her in the post-end of the school year madness.  Thankfully, I think she's here to stay.

I'll write full posts on our fabulous trip to St. Michaels later on, so for now I'll just share about what's been going on recently.

L A S T   W E E K

Walker and I arrived home on Tuesday afternoon and he headed straight into the bathroom to rinse some mud off his feet in the bathroom.  No less than two minutes later, our landlord came running in to the apartment saying that there were cascades of water pouring down from the ceiling in his medical office below.  Apparently, there was some sort of leak that had formed while we were away.  All we could think was thank goodness Walker decided to rinse off during work hours!  Can you imagine if we'd waited to shower (like we normally do) until nighttime?  They would have gone in to some severe damage.

Anyway, without water, we grabbed our still-packed suitcase and took a ride over to my parents' house for the night...only to be bit with a derecho/tornado storm and lose power over there.  With 70 mph winds, there was a lot of unexpected destruction.  It was like we got rid of one problem and ran right into the next one.

Needless to say, when we returned home the next morning (still no power at Mom & Dad's), I had to hit Starbucks before I could deal with the plumber drilling holes in our bathtub floor.  

Thursday I went into my classroom to get some things set up for next year.  Crazy?  Perhaps, but the unknowns of the situation were giving me anxiety!


Friday was a special day because I had the honor of seeing one of my close friends at work get married.  She'd been engaged for a year and a half and after eating lunch by her side for 180 days of school, I felt just as excited for her wedding day as she was!  The ceremony and reception were all beautiful and we had a great time dancing and celebrating her special day.


We woke up in the morning and were dragging a little.  Late wedding + heavy food = exhausted Kate.  It was kind of a gloomy day, so we took the opportunity to stay in our PJs and watch a little extra Netflix.  In the evening, though, we had our sweet couple friends over, so of course we had to deep clean the apartment and grocery shop for them.

I also made my favorite birthday cake EVER (gluten-free this time!!!) for dessert.  The GF flour doesn't bind in the same way that regular flour does so the cake turned out a little too concave for my OCD perfection tendencies, but I tried to ignore it because it tasted delicious!


And to finish off the weekend, Sunday was my 25th birthday!  Walker and I were originally planning to go to the shore, but it ended up being a little too cloudy for our taste (with a West wind = land breeze = flies) so we stuck around at home for the day.  

After a fabulous brunch at Turning Point, followed by a pedicure, followed by a round of mini golf with my sister, we went to my parents' house for birthday dinner and a backyard bonfire.  

I've had a lot of cool birthdays in the last five years (turned 20 in Austria, 21 in Hawaii, 22 in the Outer Banks, 23 in Mexico...etc) but my favorite memories are when I get to spend the day with the people I love the most.

It was the perfect way to ring in the next quarter century of my life!  What were you up to over the weekend?

Friday, June 26, 2015


A few weeks ago (the end of May), I found out I would be moving to third grade next year.  It did not come as a huge surprise, because there were only three 3rd grade teachers last year and four 4th grade teachers.  Those three classes could not have been split up into four - they'd be too small.  Needless to say, I was a little bummed to hear that I would be leaving fourth grade behind.  It has been my favorite grade to teach for years now!

Today, instead of giving you five highlights from my week, I'm going to share the top five reasons to be excited about my new position.  I was a crazy person and actually went into school yesterday to start setting up my room, so my enthusiasm is building already.

New classroom!

1 // It gives me more experience on a professional resume.  I'm in grad school right now studying administration and it's no secret that I hope to become a principal someday.  Who's more marketable - the teacher who has taught only one grade their entire career or the one who has had to move a few times?  As much as moving becomes a challenge, I am excited to overcome it and prove my resiliency.

2 // I know what to expect in 4th grade and have the skills to prepare my students accordingly.  My biggest pet peeves as a 4th grade teacher are when the kids come in without any fact fluency or basic understandings of grammar.  This past year, I had students counting on their fingers to solve 12-10 and forgetting to capitalize beginnings of sentences.  If I can help nip those behaviors in the buds, I can save my former grade level partners some headaches.

3 // Third grade is simpler -- the kids do not switch for math (wahoo!), do not have instrument lessons, and just generally have less-demanding schedules.  I am excited for the little bits of flexibility I can have here or there if I want to start math 5 minutes earlier or later one day.

4 // I get to work with new people.  Don't get me wrong, I loved my 4th grade friends, but I am excited about the chance to develop relationships with other teachers in the building.  

5 // It's all new curriculum (duh, right!) and that excites me.  It's no secret that I loooove what I used to teach in fourth grade, but I'm looking forward to experiencing something new.  Part of the reason I am studying administration is that I cannot see myself in the classroom forever - I'd get bored.  Change could be something really awesome for me.  Plus, if I do get a chance to go back to my old room, I'll have a whole new perspective on the curriculum.

Goodbye fourth grade!!

What's your perspective on moving around in your job?  Is it something you enjoy or dread?