Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Shortest Post Ever

It's 11:18 p.m., and I just recently got home from trivia.  We got fourth place for the month.  And next month, we will kick butt - confidence is key.

I am tired.

I did a decently good job of eating today: a huge salad and chunk of garlic bread for lunch, sushi from Gateway for dinner, and cheese/crackers for a late-night snack.  Breakfast, however, wasn't so great: I was in a huge hurry because I had major insomnia last night and slept too late, so I grabbed a brownie that my mom had sent home from Thanksgiving.  Oops.  And after dinner I had a handful of chocolate chips because, well, I had a craving.  Oh well.

The doctor was frustratingly uneventful.  Essentially, he told me I had a sprained ankle and that it would take awhile to heal.  Um, thanks for the info you told me three weeks ago, the same info the ER doctor told me six weeks ago, and the exact same thing the physical therapists have been telling me twice a week for the last six weeks.  Thanks for wasting my hour and my money.

PT was hard, as usual.  They made me sweat.  Ew.

I'm excited for school tomorrow - I will be giving my students some super exciting news (about that field experience I mentioned yesterday), and that always makes me happy.

But now, it's time to sleep.  This post was über-boring, and for that, I apologize.  Better luck tomorrow.  :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Let's Try This Again...

You know, every time I say I'm going to start blogging more regularly, I really do have the best intentions. I don't know what happens to make me mess up; I truly don't.  I think the biggest issue right now is the inability to truly workout, which significantly hinders one of my goals.  I don't want to blog about how poorly I'm doing at sticking to a plan, so I just don't blog.  Ugh.

But now it has to change.  It just. has. to.

One thing that will definitely help is the Biggest Loser contest my school is starting next week.  Another thing that will help is Key West looming in the not-so-distant future.  I maybe looked at the Victoria's Secret swim options last night - and promptly realized I'd better get my butt in gear if I want to purchase any of it!  Here's what I'm planning on looking like in four months:

Okay: I truly don't want to look like her because I think it's kind of gross, but I really like this swimsuit and want to be able to wear it without people throwing up.  :)

SO: after a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend with my family in Omaha (much of which looked like this)...

...I really buckled down today.  For breakfast I drank way too much coffee - and while I brought a Chobani and granola to school today, didn't have time to eat it.  I know how horrible that is.  Oops.  For lunch I ate leftover Shrimp 'n Grits, courtesy of BFF and Cooking Light:

That cherry-tomato salad in the background?  Yeah, I had that, too.  It was delicious but devoured in approximately five minutes since I had a hugely long meeting to attend and a freakin' awesome field experience to plan.  Here's a hint:

After school, we had PROUD and continued our amazing discussion from last week about White Privilege, using Peggy McIntosh's seminal work, Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, as our focus.  The kids were absolutely phenomenal, and I'm really excited to continue our work this year.  As the meeting was ending, one of my boys was kind of lurking around, and I asked if he needed something, as he looked like he wanted to talk to me.  At first he shook his head and said no, and then he said, "I just feel like I need to hug you!"  It was one of the sweetest things ever and totally made my day.  It's the little things, I tell ya.

I came home - finally - and chopped a ton of veggies for my dinner tonight, which I ate after working out:

It looks weird because you can't really tell what it is, but it's a HUGE salad consisting of romaine, sugar snap peas, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, dates, sweet peppers, cubed colby jack & pepper cheese, roasted acorn squash, and Annie's Goddess Dressing.  It is DELICIOUS and totally filled me up.  I'm glad I liked it so much since I have enough for three more meals.  :)

My workout today consisted of 25 minutes on the recumbent bike and then the abs/back class.  Can you believe that is all I can do?  I am SO frustrated.  Even after that super lame workout, my ankle swelled to tennis-ball size.  Ugh.  I finally go back to the doctor tomorrow, so we'll see what he says.  Please cross your fingers for me that I don't need surgery and that he has good news.  I'm nervous.  I've been taking REALLY good care of it, yet it has gotten worse.  Ugh.

Okay.  I'm off to finish the last few bites of my salad and continue my newest project:

That's right!  It's winter, so I'll be knitting up a storm!  I'm almost done with my first scarf already!  Who needs a gift?  :)

And speaking of gifts, if you are looking for my Christmas gift, here you go:

I finally saw The Blindside and am utterly obsessed with the watch she wore throughout the movie.  So, if you are in need of shopping ideas for me and have $295 to spare, there you go!  Thanks in advance!

Monday, November 15, 2010

So Weird!

Isn't it strange that it is Monday and I haven't posted since Wednesday?!  No, you say?  Oh right: that's because it happens every week!  It's been a busy few days, and honestly, the weekends are my time for relaxation.  But as with most of my goals, I really need to get back on track about blogging everyday - Thursday through Sunday included.

Thursday started off my anti-writing period.  I spent the afternoon teaching night school and then attending the monthly Young Professionals Connection social.  This month it was at Mars Cafe, which was quite an interesting venue for a happy hour; I sure felt horrible for all of the college students trying to study!  It was a great time with amazing friends...and some wine.  :)

Friday was a girls' night in, complete with wine, cheese, fruit, and board games.  We played some rousing games of Balderdash and Apples to Apples before calling it a night around 1:00.  I have to say that I have the best girlfriends in the entire world, and I am so incredibly thankful they are in my life.

Saturday was a day spent baking pumpkin bread and then heading to a girlfriend's house for lunch and cribbage.  (How old am I?!)  Her husband made us Italian Wedding Soup, and BFF brought over homemade focaccia bread, and I contributed homemade pumpkin swirl bread.  It was quite a delicious feast for a Saturday afternoon!

Following that fun I headed West in search of a bachelorette gift for that night's party.  And then...it was party time!  Again, I have some great girlfriends, and while I called it a night fairly early on, we had a blast, and I hope the bride-to-be did, too!

Finally, Sunday was reserved for relaxation...and more baking!  I tried another loaf of pumpkin swirl because my oven did not treat the first one too well.  Thankfully, it turned out better.  Then I baked a batch of sugar cookies to practice my decorating, but I got too impatient frustrated with the icing after about six cookies and put the rest of the cut-outs in the freezer.

I'm really sorry that I didn't take any pictures...  Pretty much everything turned out burned because my oven sucks, so consider yourselves lucky.  :)

The weekend culminated in a Drake University alumni-student dinner.  I sat at a table with two '66 graduates, one '06 graduate, and four college students.  We had decent food and great conversation.  For $10 and a "free" pint glass, I will totally sign up for an event like this again!

After a weekend recap, we come to today: I woke up way too late and barely made it to work before I had to start teaching (major oops!).  The day went by quickly, though - thankfully: I was there until 5:00!  Obviously I was teaching until 2:30, then I had PROUD, and then I had an impromptu meeting with my principal (honestly one of my favorite people ever), and a colleague/friend (another one of my favorite people ever).

When I finally left school, I decided to attempt a workout.  I went to the YMCA and hopped on a recumbent bike, as that is how I warm-up for physical therapy, and my physical therapist said that this is cardio that I could do.  Um, I think 30 minutes of the "fat burning" setting was not so much a good idea...nor was the abs class that I did.  (The sit-ups/laying-on-the-back exercises were fine, but the rolling on the ball and the planks maybe were not so smart.)  Needless to say, I iced as soon as I got home.

Dinner included sushi with a good friend of mine.  I am absolutely, positively stuffed.  I think that's probably a good thing - otherwise I'd be chowing down on this pumpkin bread!  (Don't worry: I brought two slices to school already today, and I'm bringing the rest to school tomorrow!)

I'm off to ice again - I'll watch some Dexter and head to bed!

Ciao, bellas!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Missed Calling

About an hour ago, I was able to resurrect one of my childhood hobbies: rescuing kitties.  When I was little, neighborhood kitties were always attracted to our house.  Perhaps it was because they knew we were kitty lovers, maybe they saw Phoebe or, later, Pete and Ernie in the window and wanted to play, or possibly it was because my mom fed them nonstop.  (Just teasing: I don't think that last one happened...too often.)  Regardless of the reason, we constantly had stray (or missing...lost...exploring) kitties on our front porch, and I felt the need to "save" them.  Clearly they couldn't find "home" on their own and needed an eight-year-old girl to do it for them.

Well, that happened again tonight.

My friend C and I had a lovely dinner and chat session at Sakari, one of my favorite sushi restaurants in town.  It is located on Ingersoll, which is a relatively busy street.  As we were leaving, this adorable tiger kitty was wandering around the door - and then weaving in and out of my gait.  

Kitty liked moving around (not posing for pictures)...a lot.
I bent down to pet the kitty and noticed it was wearing a collar.  I picked the kitty up (it was so sweet!) but couldn't find a tag - only a bell.  So, as all 27-year-olds would do, I called my mom and asked how to handle the situation.  We decided calling Animal Rescue was the best option.  I called the police department, and the dispatcher told me that she would "let them know."  So, I sat down and waited for the real rescuers to arrive.  Soon enough, Kitty joined me.

I'm not kidding: if I said, "Kitty, come here!" she would've come trotting right over.  (Yes, she is a "she" because her collar was pink.  Duh.)  And as we were sitting there waiting, Animal Rescue drove right on past.




Apparently they did not deem our situation as important as I.  After much deliberation (and convincing by my mom, C, and BFF), I decided that Kitty most likely lived in the neighborhood behind the restaurant, that she would make her way home, and that she would be fine without me.  So, we diverted Kitty's attention and ran across the street to our cars.

And Kitty followed.  Across two lanes of traffic.

I decided I would put my purse in the car and then figure out what to do with Kitty.  So, I opened the passenger door, and in hopped Kitty.  Evidently she thought coming home with me was the best option.  I disagreed and coaxed her out of the car and back onto the sidewalk.  After several minutes of persuading Kitty to stay - yes, this did involve actual talking to the feline - I hopped in my car and turned it on.  I believe Kitty then understood that I was serious and frolicked back over to Sakari.  I slowly drove away, noticing that Kitty had found others - the smoking section - to befriend.

It was hard to leave Kitty to her own devices.  I hope she's okay.

Clearly that was the highlight of my day.  Other than that, it was school, an errand to the bookstore, a trip to the eye doctor, my first-ever visit to Trader Joe's, and the aforementioned dinner with C.

I stayed at school longer than normal...again.  Grades are due on Friday, and I wanted to grade all of my students' journals prior to submitting their 12-week grades.  However, as they journal everyday, reading, commenting, and grading this writing takes FOREVER - and it's not easily transportable, so I do it all at school.  I was able to finish four classes in the past couple of days, and I have two more to go prior to grade submission.

I went to the bookstore on a mission for one of my students.  Without revealing too much information, a colleague and I are helping out one of our kids tomorrow.  As a 14-year-old, she has numerous issues going on at home and was left entirely in charge of her nine-year-old brother's birthday, money and everything; all of these troubles have been causing her a great deal of stress.  So, my colleague ordered a birthday cake to help out, and I went to the bookstore to purchase a gift for the brother, from the student. Picking out a book for a soon-to-be nine-year-old was difficult, as I'm not sure what they read!  I chose Where the Wild Things Are, thinking that is a good book for kids of any age.  To show my appreciation for what my student is doing, I also bought her a book: Tyrell - while I haven't read this one yet, it is one that many of my students have mentioned as being one of their favorites.  I really wanted Student to come with me to the store (when I took other kids last year, they were amazed and could not even fathom that Barnes and Noble was a place to buy books), but we do not have time tomorrow before she has to be home.  Bummer.

The eye doctor appointment was okay - my prescription changed a bit, he gave me a few free supplies like two types of contacts and solution, and he advised I check into Lasik.  I wish.

I quickly ventured over to Trader Joe's, as it just opened this past Friday, and I was in the area.  It was jam-packed.  I think I will like the store much better when it is less new, but it was also much different than what I was expecting - a lot smaller, a lot fewer items than I thought.  I escaped with a bottle of Two-Buck Chuck (or, more accurately, $2.99 Chuck), a bag of PB-filled pretzels (that I have been reading about nonstop on other blogs), and a few slices of naan (for the Indian meal I was going to prepare prior to being invited for sushi).

Finally, the day ended with a fabulous dinner of sushi.  We ordered four rolls to split between the two of us, and needless to say, we have lunch for tomorrow!  Because we went to dinner later than normal (and are both teachers who eat super freakin' early), our eyes ended up being bigger than our stomachs.  Oh well!

Like last night, I'm going to hobble over to the freezer to grab a bag of ice, and then I'm going to hit the sack with a frozen ankle!

Peace out, Girl Scouts!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Little Miss Forgetful

Before I tell you about today, I have to go back to yesterday's post.  I'm sure many of you were wondering, what's up with the title of this?  Is it just another one of Emily's unimaginative, completely random titles?  Well, folks, I have the answer: it was not random at all.  I simply forgot to explain.  While I was writing the post, I was enjoying a Ring Pop - a slobbery, gross Ring Pop.  And I was loving every second of it.  :)

And now for the good stuff:

Today was a busy yet boring day.  I spent the majority of it in a training session at work.  While it was much better than the last training - and I did take away some activities for my classroom - I would've much rather had been with my students.  Oh well.

I ate a bagel for breakfast (not good, I know) and a steak salad from Star Bar for lunch.  That is perhaps my favorite salad of all time.  I'm sure it's horribly unhealthy - blue cheese, red meat, loads of dressing, etc. - but it is so darn good and really hit the spot today.

Immediately after the training, I headed to physical therapy.  It was much needed.  First, I was so incredibly sore last night, likely from having the doctor jerk it around so much yesterday.  I was fully intending on working out after school (like, the stationary bike or something), but I could barely move.  So instead, as I told you yesterday, I camped out with my leg elevated and iced all night long.  I woke up several times throughout the night, too, because it hurt so bad.  Then today at my training, a woman opened the bathroom door as I was grabbing a paper towel and completely rammed the door into my injured foot.  I think she thought I was absolutely bonkers since I nearly started crying.

Anyway: physical therapy really sucked today.  First, Bree did another edema massage to try to work out the scar tissue so that I won't need surgery.  Granted, I really appreciate her doing this, and I know I really need to buck up, but HOLY COW: it hurt like you wouldn't believe.

After that lovely experience, she had me do my exercises: push up, push down, push inward, push outward.  Then, we started something brand new: stability work.  Let me tell you what a workout this was!  You'd think basic balancing exercises would be a piece of cake - and I'm sure they are when you actually have ligaments to support yourself!  Here is a sampling of what I did today:

First, she had me stretch out my calf muscle from the strengthening exercises, and then she had me step on this foam pad (see above).  I had to step up using just my right leg (injured one), bend my knee slightly, and stay balanced.  Um - NO.  It was soooo difficult!

After approximately 8,000 repetitions of the foam block, she made me do the same thing on the Bosu - unlike the dude in the above picture, I did not have to balance with my left leg behind me but rather had it tucked in almost to my chest (standing upright).  I had to do a bazillion repetitions stepping forward, and then I had to do several stepping to the right - that was WAY hard, as there are no ligaments keeping my body from following my foot.

Next, I did more exercises using this ridiculous piece of equipment.  As you can see in the above picture, it is essentially a board suspended in the air with chains.  Obviously it is extremely wobbly and slides all over the place; imagine having to stay balanced on it with an ankle that has zero support.  Right.  Again, I had to stand on it two different ways: like the man in the above picture and then also facing the supporting beams.  It really worked the different motions of the ankle: side-to-side and back-and-forth.  And was extremely freakin' hard.

Finally, I had to stand on my right foot, facing this trampoline, and toss the little red ball to the trampoline and catch it.  It sounds easy enough, but when you have to keep adjusting your balance to catch the ball, it is very, very difficult.

After all of these exercises, Bree iced my ankle and sent me home, but I think I'm going to be very, very, very sore tonight/tomorrow.  I will be icing all night long!

All I need to do at home is the strengthening exercises and ice, and Bree said I can start doing the stationary bike if I want.  I'm hoping to have some energy (and not a lot of pain) tomorrow after school so that I can start on that.  I'm sick of the lack of cardio...

After physical therapy I got an oil change and new wiper blades, and my piece-o'-crap car is as good as new it was a week ago before it ran out of oil!  I came home, heated up some white chili, and headed off to trivia!  Unfortunately, tonight was not our night; while several teams (including those ahead of us) had more than six people and were also on their smart phones the whole time, we have some semblance of integrity, which put us in fifth place, quite a bit behind first, for the month.

And since it's Trivia Tuesday, here's a random fact about me!

My strongest sense is smell, and it often jogs my memory of certain times in my life.  For example, strawberry air fresheners will always remind me of my first boyfriend's car.  Sarah Jessica Parker's Lovely will always remind me of Mexico.  My absolute favorite scent in the world is that of my mom's bathrobe, probably because it is what she wears every night before she hugs us and says good night.  She recently bought me rose salve from Sephora, and it is exactly the smell of my mom.  I love it because it makes it seem like my mom is nearby.

So in closing, I'm going to put some of that rose salve on my dry hands (thank you, Winter Air), grab my ice pack, and hit the sack!  See you tomorrow!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Just a Kid at Heart

Today was a looooooooooong day.  At around 7:20 this evening, I was certain it was way past my bedtime; however, I made myself stay up (obviously) because I'm sure I'd be up at 3 a.m. if I hit the sack that early.

Because I chose to go to bed last night instead of grade my stack of papers, I woke up relatively early (okay, okay: when my third alarm went off) and got to school before my hallway was even open!  While waiting for the doors to open, I sat in the student common area and graded assignments.  I finally finished them about 4:30 this evening and then, after taking care of a mass of other work (substitute plans for tomorrow, team point tabulation, etc.), I finally left school around 5:15.

I got there when it was dark.  I left when it was dark.  I don't have windows in my classroom.

I am not sure how I'm going to function like this!

Luckily, I was able to leave my dungeon for about an hour today while I drove to my doctor's appointment.  They didn't do another x-ray but seemed fairly confident that nothing was broken.  Instead, he said I tore two of the ligaments instead of just one and that it is a really, really bad sprain.  I have to continue to RICE it and go back in two weeks.  If it's not better then, I will have to see a foot/ankle specialist.  Then if it doesn't get better, the sports medicine doctor mentioned surgery.


I'm going to instead just will my ankle to repair itself.  That'll work, right?

After my super-long day at work, I came home and cooked a fast, amazing meal.  First, I started with a salad (bagged lettuce) topped with Annie's Goddess dressing.  I've read about it on many other blogs and finally bought a bottle myself.  It is really good!  Honestly, it tastes like croutons - without having croutons on your salad.  I definitely recommend it.

I then made the dinner I make more often than anything else: my mom's white chili.  It is just so good, so easy, and relatively healthy.  I didn't have any tortilla chips, though, and that omission was a notable difference.  And a major bummer.

I followed the salad and chili with a few bites of Ben & Jerry's Cinnamon Bun ice cream.  It's to. die. for.

I apologize for the lack of other pictures today.  I brought a lot of food to school for breakfast, lunch, and an after-school-snack, but it was a haphazard mixture of randomness that I didn't even dig into until noon.  I know.  It's horrible.  I was just BUSY!  Breakfast/lunch consisted of two hard-boiled eggs, some salsa, and a flat-bun with turkey and Laughing Cow cheese.  Random, right?  I also had a mini-Three Musketeers (that I don't even like) for dessert.

Tomorrow I'm spending all day in a pre-AP training session.  Hopefully I'll learn a lot that I can take back to my classroom - I've already prepped with one question I'm dying to ask the presenter.  I'll fill you in tomorrow.  :)

Have a good night, friends!  I'm off to ice and elevate my ankle...AGAIN.  Mwah!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Jam-Packed Weekend

This weekend - like most of 'em - was way too full of fun and went by much too quickly.  It started on Friday with physical therapy right after school: she thinks I broke my fibula, so I am going back for more x-rays - hopefully tomorrow.  After that, I met a friend out for dinner and then went to see our school's production of RENT.  It was absolutely amazing - by far the best school performance of anything I've ever seen, and I venture to say it was nearly as good as the Broadway production.  Incredible.  The director also was able to have three panels of the AIDS quilt on display in the auditorium:

Following the play, my friends and I went back to our original restaurant, joined a few more of our friends, and had a few drinks.  It was a really fun evening.  I have the greatest friends in the world!

On Saturday, I woke up for breakfast with BFF (Waveland, natch), ran a few errands, and proceeded to go on the most horrible blind date of all time.  I will spare you the details, but when he continued to text me after the date was over (finally) and I wasn't responding, I became so utterly offended by what he was saying and had to respond with, "Imagine how you would feel if in 20 years, some guy told your daughter what you just said to me."  This prompted him to warn me that if I ever tried to "mess with" his family, I would not live to regret it.  

I love my BFF because she then took one for the team and texted him that she would be notifying the authorities if he ever contacted me again - he responded equally degrading and threatening things to her (saying I'll be lucky if I still have a job next week - um, what?!), but we are hoping that he is now through with both of us.  And if he is not, I think we will have to contact someone.

Ah, I love the dating scene.

Clearly that whole scandal warranted a fun night out with the girls.  BFF and I headed to Dos Rios - where else?  We were joined shortly thereafter by another friend, a colleague and his wife, one of my newest awesome friends, and another guy.  After Dos was closing down, we headed to the Royal Mile - and then because we had an extra hour, ended the night at Zimm's.  It was far too much fun, and I spent the majority of the day recovering.

I really need to get back to my goal of "one night of fun per week."  Really.  Once is enough.

The weekend fun culminated with my soccer team's banquet.  We headed to Felix & Oscar's in West Des Moines for some ah-maze-ing pizza.  I had a slice of deep-dish pepperoni and a slice of thin-crust mushroom.  It was just what the doctor ordered!

I suppose I should maybe grade some papers before the weekend is over...  Or, maybe I'll just do it in the morning instead.  I think my bed is calling my name!

Talk to you tomorrow, friends!  And please cross your fingers about my x-ray!  Thanks!!!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Already, Des Moines?

As I was driving downtown this afternoon, I was appalled.  It can't be, I thought as I saw these lining the street:

LINING the streets.  Didn't Halloween just end?  Wow.  This year has flown by.

I woke up earlier this morning than I would've liked to - but doesn't this happen every morning?  I quickly awoke by drinking a homemade iced coffee - or three - and slurping down a shake: raspberries, blackberries, banana, UVAB, vanilla protein powder, and ground flaxseed.  It sure did its job and kept me full until 1:00 when I was finally able to eat lunch.

That, however, is another story.  I went to make a wrap this morning, and unbeknownst to me, my Flatouts had gone bad.  I grabbed one out of the bag, plopped it on the counter, and it literally disintegrated right there.  It was absolutely disgusting.  And since I had eaten all of my leftovers and didn't have any other bread with which to make a sandwich, this is what I ate:

Yep: hummus, baby carrots, and two pieces of string cheese (hidden between the veggies and stapler on my disgusting desk).  I was dying for some carbs!

Luckily, after physical therapy today (which absolutely killed, by the way), BFF, another bestie, and I went to Trostel's for dinner and a glass of wine.  Trostel's is a small-plate restaurant; they put a maximum of four plates on the table at a time, stagger the meals, and diners are encouraged to share dishes and order throughout the evening.  Check out this spread:

Popcorn Shrimp - literally crusted with popcorn.  YUM.
Maple-Pecan Pumpkin (I think).  DOUBLE YUM.
Artichoke stuffed with something that I don't remember.  (This wasn't my favorite dish, but it was still yummy.)
We also ate lobster tacos that had dried plantains rather than tortilla shells, and BFF and bestie ordered one of my personal faves - macaroni and cheese with truffle oil and chicken (or something like that).  I was absolutely stuffed from everything else that I couldn't even take a bite of the mac 'n cheese!  That's when you know a girl's full!

I am currently plopped on the couch with a blanket of ice wrapped around my ankle.  I need to numb the sucker completely before I can even attempt the exercises my physical therapist is forcing upon me.  At least I don't have to go back until Friday!  A day off will be awesome.

Wish me luck with these exercises!  Check ya tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

In Mourning

Really, Iowa?  Really?  We don't retain three Supreme Court justices because they upheld the Constitution?  That makes all sorts of sense.

I am infuriated.  I am so upset that I can't even form a coherent thought about all of it.  Check back tomorrow for intelligent analysis.

Also, the Tea Party is insane.  Ab-so-lute-ly bonkers.  In case you needed further proof than my clearly well-informed opinion, look at their Facebook page.  Um, really?

Iowa, America: I'm scared.

On a completely different note, let's review my day.  :)

First, I woke up late and was rushed getting ready, so instead of the protein shake I had planned for breakfast, I grabbed a Chobani and headed out the door.  I mixed in a few Cracklin' Oat Bran (my fave cereal) bits - just because I hate the texture of yogurt - and it was delish.

After a morning of teaching, I headed to my polling place - although clearly it did no good.  The nursing home was packed to the brim, so instead of stepping into the booth, I just filled out my ballot on the back of a piano, right in front of a news camera.  That's how awesome I am - I just don't care.

I returned to school and ate my second helping of dinner last night - and loved every single bite.  Honestly, if shrimp (and artichokes, and sun-dried tomatoes, and capers, and Feta) weren't so darn expensive, I'd make that once a week.  It was SO good.

I had full intentions of doing an upper-body workout after school, but between tutoring and physical therapy, I really didn't feel like I had enough time.  So, I skipped out and went to PT a little early.  And it HURT. SO. BAD.  Because the swelling was still so bad, the physical therapist did an edema massage to try and help it go down.  Since it was too tender to even touch, just imagine what a massage felt like.  Um...yeah.  After doing that along with some exercises, she attached me to four electrodes and wrapped my entire foot in a blanket of ice and shocked electricity through me for about 15 minutes.  It was quite uncomfortable, but the combination of the different therapies really helped.

And I get to go back tomorrow, Friday, three times next week, and two times a week for the next four weeks.  It's going to be fun.

I ate my final serving of last night's dinner for dinner tonight - and again, I loved it.  YUM.  I headed off for a "light therapy" session (prescribed by my dermatologist, I promise!), and then checked in at trivia.  It is the first week in November, so tonight started a new trivia competition; so far we are in fourth place, 15 points from first.  We can totally get those points back; I have faith.

And since it's trivia night, you get a fun fact about Emily!  So, here goes:

I am not afraid of many things.  I don't lock my doors in the "scary part of town," I don't like spiders but do not scream when I see them, and I am not phased by clowns.  However, there are two things that scare me: 1.) death, which I believe is a common fear, and 2.) being single my whole life.  While I am currently happy and not actively pursuing any sort of relationship, I see many of my friends in happy relationships, and it has hit me recently that most of the good guys are no longer single.  Where does that leave me?  Ugh.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Told You So!

Before I say anything else, I have to tell you how excited I am for tomorrow.  I'm not ecstatic because I get to vote; I am elated because these ads are going to be DONE!!!  Anyone else sick and tired of them?!  If so, please check out this ad from our local zoo.  It cracks me up.

Okay.  Now on to the real stuff.  :)

This morning I woke up (relatively) bright and early and noshed on some overnight pumpkin oats.  Unfortunately, I forgot my camera at school, so you don't get a picture of them.  Use your imagination: 3/4 cup of pumpkin puree, 1/3 cup of oats, a sprinkling of cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice, and chilled overnight in the fridge.  They were delish and kept me full nearly all morning!

For lunch (again no picture), I had a Flatout wrap with Laughing Cow cheese and turkey and a peach Chobani.

After school I was absolutely famished; on "white" days I eat lunch at 10:45 a.m.  Of course I'm going to be starving by 3:30!  I ate two pieces of string cheese and a Larabar - and was stuffed.  :)  I then went to our PROUD meeting (I just love those kids!), went tanning (I also love Vitamin D!), went to the grocery store for some random pick-ups, and then came home and whipped up a new creation:

(You got a picture because it was on my phone, not my camera.  You're welcome.)  I was going to make shrimp quesadillas, but I wasn't so much in the mood.  So I took the shrimp and heated it with artichoke hearts, balsamic capers, sun-dried tomatoes, and garlic, dumped it over a serving of whole-grain linguine, and topped with some Feta cheese.  It was really, really, really good.  I'm already excited to eat it for lunch and dinner tomorrow.

And for dessert?  Meringues.  I'm not kidding: serious addiction going on.  But I had to have something sweet, especially this week (you know, girls), and if I eat a maximum of four per day, they're really not that bad.

Enough rationalization.  :)

Tomorrow is going to be a super busy day: school, study program, weight room (I'm going to do an arm workout because I have to do something), physical therapy (I called about my ankle - and am super nervous to go), and then trivia.  I will be pooped tomorrow - but will still blog!!!

Now: I still have about eight papers to grade before 9:00 tomorrow morning.  Should I do 'em now...or wake up early?  Decisions, decisions!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

This Time It's FOR REAL

First and foremost, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!  It's my personal favorite holiday (aside from Christmas with the fam), so I usually go all out.  This year I was a witch, which isn't the most creative idea per se, but I did make it myself.

Note: flats are the only shoes that work with a sprained ankle.  Ugh.  I'm sick of being short.

Friday night was spent at the Court Avenue street party - followed by after hours at my house.  I'm not sure why I ever think after hours is a good idea, but for some reason, it happens more often than not.

My sister (Mustafa) and me
After a day spent cheering at a soccer tournament, lying on the couch, and eating greasy food, I was ready for another night of fun.  This time we hung out on Ingersoll: Star Bar for a bestie's son's performance, Zimm's for a nightcap.  Thankfully, there were no after-hours to be had!

BFF and me
Today was also spent being a waste of space - and it was glorious.  I love lounging on the couch and watching an endless Law and Order: SVU marathon.

My TV-viewing was interrupted, however, to go to a visitation.  My athletic director's wife passed away this week after a two-year battle with ovarian cancer.  I always think I'm going to be tough and not cry at things like this, but it never happens; I was a basket-case, as usual.  I went with my colleague, and when we went through the line, our AD (also a kind of fatherly-type person) talked to us about the importance of listening to our bodies and doing what we think is right for them.  He started tearing up, and that's when I really lost it.  So, so sad.

In other news, I realize I have completely failed a few of my goals.  (I have stuck with one, though: reading one book a month.)  However, my blogging over the last couple of weeks has been less-than-amazing, my dieting has been relatively non-existent, my exercising has took a turn for the worse since my ankle sprain, and my partying has been increased a little too much.  I have absolutely no excuses as to why I am sucking so horribly, but I do know that it can't go on any longer: I need to get my motivation back.

This time I'm for real.

Obviously my exercising will not be where it should, but my ankle is absolutely horrible.  The swelling in my foot has started to go down a little bit, but it's still massive around my heel and ankle bone.  It hurts like you wouldn't believe.  Walking is difficult, and I can't imagine running, biking, or kicking a soccer ball.  Honestly, I can't even imagine swimming, an exercise with zero impact.  I think I'll probably get a six-pack and sweet arm muscles, though, since that's all the working out I'll be able to do!  I am going to call a physical therapist tomorrow because I need to start doing something.

Anyway, I apologize for my absence, and know that I am serious about restarting my motivation!  I'll see you tomorrow with details of healthy-eating!  :)

Monday, October 25, 2010


Here's for a quick post, as I am absolutely pooped.  Today was a long day, and tomorrow will be even longer.  I feel so old when I say that 10:30 is past my bedtime, but it is!

Today started off great with a bowl of pumpkin oats - which I took a picture of but am currently too lazy to download.  :)  I am absolutely obsessed with anything pumpkin lately.  I guess that's what fall does to a girl!

The morning was a little rough, only because my right ankle/foot is approximately three times the size of my left - and a lovely greenish hue.  But, I spent the majority of the day teaching sitting down, and my colleagues and students were great at assisting me.

For lunch I had a generous helping of wild rice and chicken salad.  It is so freakin' good and is my new go-to recipe.  Honestly: to die for.  Then...I messed up.  I have a stash of Halloween candy in my room leftover from a staff meeting, and I had a few pieces of it this afternoon.  I don't know what my deal has been lately with sweets, but I can't seem to satisfy my sweet tooth!

When I got home from school - after the PROUD meeting, of course - I ate a small thing of yogurt and two meringue cookies.  And before I headed to a 6:00 presentation, I ate one of those Weight Watchers ice cream bars.  And THEN, after the presentation, BFF and I went to Star Bar where I had half a turkey, bacon, and swiss panini with French fries.  What is wrong with me?!

Oh well...tomorrow's another day.

And tomorrow definitely needs to be a better day - I am getting unhealthy again...way too fast.  Ugh.

The lecture we attended was by Jawanza Kunjufu, who spoke on education and economics, specifically in regards to African American males.  While I think he made some good points, I also felt personally attacked, as he frequently criticized the work of white female teachers in inner-city schools.  I am quite educated in regards to privilege, race, poverty, and education, and I was not impressed with how he played the blame game by generalizing systemic oppression onto a very specific group of individuals.  Obviously it's too much too get into in this forum, but...suffice it to say that it upset me - and not in a good way.

So, on that note, it's past my bedtime!  I'm going to ice my foot, prop it up on a couple of pillows, and pass out!

Peace, yo.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Whining Permitted

I told you I'd be back on Sunday evening!  It has been quite the weekend, let me tell you.

Yesterday it started bright and early with my mom and sister for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure:

Sadly, this is the only photo I have, as I mistakenly left my camera in the car during the race.  I really wish I hadn't: there were so many amazing photo-ops that I missed!  Oh well - next year.

After the race we headed to the Machine Shed for breakfast, but it turns out they don't serve breakfast all day.  I was super bummed but settled for a turkey reuben.  I was starving after the race.  BUT, I had about two bites and then had to split - to play a soccer game!

Although I was absolutely pooped during the soccer game, it was fun as usual, and I can tell I have improved throughout the season.  However, about halfway through the fourth quarter, I got hurt.  I was trying to save a ball that was headed out of bounds; I ended up saving it, but I also ended up destroying my ankle.  I took my first-ever trip to the ER and discovered that I had a severe sprain.  Interestingly, the doctor told me that it'd be better if it were a fracture since the recovery time is a lot less.  Lovely.  Now I get to wear this awesome accessory:

I tried taking pictures to show you just how swollen and bruised it is, but for some reason it's not turning out well in photos.  Oh well.  You'll just have to trust me when I say that it. is. bad.

Furthermore, it puts a major damper on my workout plan.

So, to cope with that, I ate horrible food all weekend long.

And then I realized there will be no more of that since I will be sitting on my booty recovering for several weeks.  Ugh.

Tomorrow, I will be back to my usual posts: food details, calorie counts (that have been lacking lately, I know), and random babbling about my life.  Stay tuned.

To get you caught up on the Life of Emily as of late, though, here are some photos:

The PSA on the garbage trucks in Watertown, South Dakota.  (Twenty-six hours in the car is a long time, people: cut me some slack.)
My grandma and me at her 80th birthday party.
My brother, me, and my sister at our g-ma's 80th.
The 'rents at G-ma's 80th.
The ridiculous artwork that Council Bluffs has recently installed.
See y'all tomorrow!  Sleep tight!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Don't Cry...

...dry your eyes.

I promise I will post again soon - most likely Sunday night.  This week has been über-busy, including but not limited to the following:

  • Parent-teacher conferences
  • Way too much fun after parent-teacher conferences
  • A giant leap away from healthy-eating
  • A 26-hour drive in less than 48 hours
  • A fabulous 80th birthday party
  • A diversity conference with students
  • Running, a soccer practice, a yoga workout, and a soccer game
  • Cookie-decorating to celebrate a good friend's exciting news
  • A "granted" grant!!!
  • Not nearly enough sleep.
I'm running a 5k tomorrow (Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure) and then playing a soccer game.  I'm sure there will be a nap involved shortly thereafter, and then it's time to party-it-up for a friend's birthday.


See you back here on Sunday - I sincerely apologize for sucking so horribly the past week-and-a-half.  Ugh.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Yes, that is the sound of someone who drank a 20-oz pumpkin latte at 5:30 in the evening.  I never - and I mean never - drink caffeine after noon because of how absolutely awake it makes me.  However, I had a grant to finish writing this evening, and I was just about passing out on my computer.  So...  I drank copious amounts of coffee.


That is precisely why I failed to blog yesterday, friends.  I had all good intentions to write, but after a full day at work, I just couldn't do it.  This was my agenda:

1. School: the day went fairly quickly, as we did an awesome activity in class that had the kids up and moving around, discussing issues pertinent to their lives.  Also, along with a clip from the History Channel about "History of the Holidays: Columbus Day," I showed this video:

2. PROUD: we solidified the final design for the t-shirt, and it's going to be pretty freakin' awesome.  Get your checkbooks ready, folks - you're gonna want one!

3. Caribou: I spent two hours working on the grant, making adjustments my principal and I had discussed...and hardly got anything accomplished.

4. Gym: I was only planning on staying for the abs/back class because I had so much to do (and I wanted to watch Dancing with the Stars), but I decided yoga was probably the better idea - so had a great 90-minute workout.

5. Dinner: I called BFF on my way home from the gym, and since she had class and hadn't yet eaten dinner, invited her over.  I was planning on making the wild rice & chicken salad but instead changed my mind at the last minute and made this:

    I did not realize until just now how horribly awful the picture is!  Apparently I was too famished to care! I made the tried-and-true classic, tortellini with pesto; however, I jazzed it up a bit by sauteeing and mixing in garlic, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, crushed red pepper, and chicken.  O...M...G.  It was a fabulous idea.  BFF whipped up some garlic bread on a toasted ciabatta roll.  (Also, I'm aware that it doesn't look like we had a veggie for this meal.  However, I threw all of the veggies that I bought into the pasta.  That counts, right?)

    The pasta was so fabulous, in fact, that I had the leftovers for both lunch and dinner today!

    Side note: I was cracking up last night because I had gone to the store and pretty much picked up whatever looked good in the produce department (i.e. cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, etc.).  Then I was joking with BFF about how I was being super random last night and just tossing absolutely whatev into our dinner.  That's when she caught me: "Um...that's called cooking, Emily!"  Haha - oh yeah.

    Because I took two allergy pills last night and drank a glass of red wine (remember, it's good for you) with BFF, I crashed as soon as my head hit the pillow - and was pretty much a zombie for the first two hours I was "awake" this morning.  However, I still managed to make a delish breakfast:

    I tried something new with my oats this morning: instead of cooking them in the microwave, I cooked them on the stove.  It worked out so much better!  First, I didn't have to stand there and open-close-open-close-open-close the microwave to make sure it didn't overflow; I just let it cook on its own.  Second, they didn't cake up the bowl like they normally do (i.e. clean-up was a lot easier).  Third, they just tasted better!  That could be because I added a dash of cinnamon, a swig of UVAB, and some flaxseeds at the end, but who knows?  :)

    Obviously today was another busy day: school, Ninth Block, grant writing all evening, and trivia.  The good news is that I finished the grant and sent it off to my principal - hooray!  Hopefully I did it correctly...  :)

    Team "Neverland Ranch Hands" did not fare so well at trivia tonight, but we are in fifth place overall for the month of October: there is still time to redeem ourselves!

    And since it's Trivia Tuesday, here's some random trivia about me:

    One of my favorite physical features about myself is my skin.  Apparently it is extra-soft (although I don't really notice it), and I love all my freckles.  I also appreciate that I get very brown in the summer.  However, my skin is also one of my burdens, as I am allergic to just about everything - band-aids included; in fact, I cut myself shaving last Wednesday, put a band-aid on it (one that I thought worked fine with my skin) for about 30 minutes, removed the band-aid, and still have a red, itchy outline of it on my shin.  If that's not awesome, I don't know what is.

    Okay: I'm off to crash yet again.  I'm hoping I'll be able to write tomorrow, but it's also parent-teacher conferences (which means an über-long day), so no promises.

    Peace out, yo.

    Sunday, October 10, 2010

    Fun-Filled Fall (?) Weekend

    Can you believe these temperatures?!  I think Mother Nature is a little confused...  It's the middle of October, and the temperatures are in the 80s!  Don't get me wrong: I'm not complaining!  It's so weird being able to go outside in skirts and tank-tops when it was snowing at this time last year!

    Friday started off perfectly: we hit up Wellman's patio to start and then headed to Noah's Ark for dinner.  With the amount of alcohol we had consumed (oops), it was probably entirely inappropriate for us to dine at an old-fashioned family restaurant; I blame it on P, as I had never been there before and didn't know what to expect.  :)  We were absolutely famished by the time we got there, though, and I didn't even have a chance to take a picture of our fresh garlic, pineapple, and Canadian bacon pizza before devouring the entire thing - along with, oh, half a loaf of to-die-for focaccia bread.  After dinner, we headed to the classy Alpine, where I proceeded to have a full beer dumped on me.  Fun times, fun times.  And THEN...home in bed by 11:00!

    I was up bright and early on Saturday, ate a bowl of Cheerios, read some of The Time Traveler's Wife, took a quick morning nap, and headed on an hour-long tour of Altoona, trying to find the soccer fields for my noon game.  At 11:57, I arrived, threw on my shin-guards and cleats, and pranced on the field - still in my oversized celebrity sunglasses.  Hot mess.  As usual, we lost the game, but it was probably the most fun game I've played the entire season: we were fairly equally matched, my feet weren't bothering me (thanks, Ibuprofen!), and we played decently well!  However, I realized it is very tiring playing an entire soccer game with no subs!  The rule is that each team must have four girls on the field at all times, or they have to play "man down."  Because we only had four girls for the game yesterday, we all had to play every single minute.  I was wiped.

    After I recovered from a sweaty game, took a shower, and relaxed for all of fifteen minutes, I joined BFF and another friend at the World Food Festival in the East Village.

    BFF and her friend had a tall table in the middle of all the action, right in front of the main stage, where as you can see below, Omega Dog was playing.  They were a totally fabulous band that we will definitely be checking out again.

    After attempting a self-portrait, a kind older gentleman offered to take our picture for us.  Perhaps we should've switched spots with the photographer, as you can see the sun's position cast his shadow over us.  Oh well - I like it nevertheless.

    There was a host of interesting individuals at the festival.  I didn't realize how many hippies Des Moines had!  :)  We ran into several people we knew: students, classmates, colleagues, and...the ex.  Not just the ex, but the ex with his family.  I debated letting his wife know that he called me at 3 a.m. that morning.  That could have been entertaining.

    I have such a visceral reaction, an immense hatred toward him - this is such an abnormal feeling for me, as I have a really hard time even disliking anyone.  I am obviously angry with him for the way he treated me, lied to me (oh, by "divorce" you really mean "working things out"?), etc., but seeing him honestly just makes me want to throw up and/or gouge my eyes out.  He is just the most despicable person I have ever met.

    But I digress.

    One of the interesting people we met at the festival was a Senegalese musician.  Upon minutes of meeting me, he all but professed his undying love for me, but I was not at all interested until he started actually talking about himself, his culture, his ancestry, and all that fun stuff.  He is part of the Mandinko group and is descended from their last known king, Sundiata Keita.  I wish that I had had a recorder so that I could remember everything this young man was telling us, but alas, I will just have to research it myself.

    One thing I found especially intriguing about him was his beliefs.  He talked a lot about "the Invisible Man," and when I appeared confused (which, um, I was), he asked if I had ever heard of voodoo.  He then proceeded to show me the amulets and other protective pieces he wears on his body at all times:

    He was telling us that nothing can harm him when he has these pieces on: bullets, bombs, nothing.  Seeing his absolute, unwavering conviction was really awesome.  I really want to learn more about his culture and beliefs - library, here I come!

    How gorgeous is this sunset?!

    After leaving the festival - without eating any food (what were we thinking?!), we headed to...Dos Rios. Where else would we go on a Saturday?!  We enjoyed a relaxing, fun-filled evening on the patio sipping our Sangrias:

    Today was an early day for me - probably because I was asleep by 11:30 for the second night in a row.  :)  I woke up at 7:30, ate breakfast

     and immediately started reading The Time Traveler's Wife.  I was bound and determined to finish it today because it was so freakin' good, and...I did!  Check out my review here.

    I then headed to the dog park with BFF and her girls, Riley and Zoe.  We did a lap around the park and then camped out on our blankets while watching the pups frolic in the lake:

    It was - quite literally - a picture-perfect day!  I hope I got some color - along with all of the slaps of wet tails and showers from doggies shaking off!

    One of us (ahem, BFF) wanted a little grease for lunch, so we headed to one of our favorite Mexican restaurants, La Hacienda.  It sure did the trick!  For once, I strayed from my normal meal (Vegetarian A) and opted for the beef chimichanga.  It was as delicious - and unhealthy - as it looks!  My plate was cleared, let me tell you!

    After a nice, relaxing afternoon - including more reading, tanning, and errand-running, I met three of the most fabulous friends in the world at BFF's house for a most fantastic meal: Chicken Bryan:

    Honestly.  Look at that.  Sauteed spinach.  Garlic bread.  Chicken with sun-dried tomatoes.  And goat cheese.  And lemon butter sauce.  O...M...G.

    After watching a TIVO'd episode of The Real Housewives of Atlanta (do I really need more trashy reality TV to be roped into?!), BFF sent us on our ways with our very own loaves of...get ready for it...pumpkin cheesecake bread.  Seriously?!

    Please disregard the kitty nose: he wanted a taste, too.  And wasn't shy about "asking."
    Okay: I'm off to scour my bookshelves for my next read.  Any suggestions?

    A Serious Post

    Later tonight I will blog about the weekend, but right now I want/need to write about something sad: death.  I feel like lately life has proven to be so fragile.  This summer, one of my friends from high school passed away unexpectedly, and I had a really hard time accepting that.  Although we hadn't spoken in awhile, Jenny and I were good friends through our church choir, and she is my first friend who has died.  It just isn't fair to lose someone so young, so beautiful, so full of life.

    Last week, a woman who I know through school and social justice advocacy was hit by a car as she and her son were walking across the street.  She spent several days in the neurological ICU - on a respirator with little to no brain activity.  I received word today that she passed away.  Chenita was always so amazing to work with - honestly, she is one of the most genuinely nice, happy, and cheerful people I have ever met - and I am so thankful that I knew her.

    Today I finished reading The Time Traveler's Wife, and it gave me kind of a new perspective on life and death: what if time isn't as linear as we think it is?  What if when people pass on, they can still be with us, still watch over us, still interact with us?  Maybe this is possible through time-travel.  Maybe it's possible through nature and the wind.  Maybe it's possible through reincarnation.  Maybe it's possible through heaven and angels.

    I just have to believe it's possible.


    Thursday, October 7, 2010

    Need: Motivation

    Yep.  I skipped again.  Twice.

    On Tuesday, I was just absolutely beat.  I went to school, worked our after-school Ninth Block program, worked out in the weight room (Elliptical From Hell for 30 minutes and then arm weights for about 20), went straight to soccer practice, and then headed to trivia.  By the time I got home around 10:30, I was absolutely wiped and decided bed was a better idea than blogging.

    I was so sleepy, in fact, that on Wednesday morning, I woke up at 6:20, decided my hair still looked decent from showering before trivia the night before, and went back to bed until 6:45.  It was awesome.

    Yesterday was another busy day: I woke up (late, obv!), had a half day of school, gave two separate presentations to the staff, and then came home to relax before cooking dinner for me and BFF.

    I did get the good news that the student about whom I was so worried (open enrollment, etc) is going to be able to stay at my school - yay!!!  And then my excitement was brought down quite a few notches when a close colleague of mine told me that I was stereotyping the other school district by saying they would not do as wonderful a job as us in serving this child.  It really, really hurt my feelings that I was criticized for doing what I thought was the right thing.  It also hurt me because my colleague did not ask for the whole story - when I emailed my principal, I expressed that I was certain the other district was great but that I feared it would be too big for this particular student at this point in the school year, especially due to all of the services we were already providing and the connections we had already made.

    I know I'm super sensitive, especially right now, but...I was am really upset about it.

    After that downer (and because I worked out like crazy the day before), I went home and chilled for a bit prior to cooking dinner:

    I made a Cooking Light recipe: Baked Pasta with Spicy Turkey Sausage.  I also roasted some fresh green beans with garlic, spices, and olive oil.  BFF came over after her class got out, and we enjoyed some DELICIOUS dinner.  Honestly, it was one of the best things I've cooked in awhile!  It was amazing comfort food, yet it was somehow decently healthy!  What gives?!  And can you believe that picture is just one serving?!

    That dinner, time with the BFF, and a nice glass of wine was just what the doctor ordered after kind of a rough day.

    During the middle of the night, I woke up several times, which was obviously super annoying.  Finally I took three Advil around 3:30 because my stomach hurt so bad.  (Lady issues, boys.  You wouldn't understand.)  Perhaps that's what I was overly emotional yesterday - although I'm still annoyed by the comment - and maybe that's why I'm tearing up at Project Runway now.

    Hot mess.

    Today, school was also kind of a disaster.  Several classes throughout the district are mandated to give benchmark tests every six weeks; my class was one of them, and today was the first of those tests.  The test was supposed to be very basic, lasting about 20 minutes or so.  Um...yeah right.  The first reading passage was three-and-a-half pages, and the second was two pages.  There were 15 multiple choice questions total and two short answer questions.  My students struggled hugely; with such low reading levels, those passages and so few questions took nearly the entire 90 minutes.  I am nervous that I am going to be evaluated - and that my students are going to be assessed - on these questions.  Should be interesting...

    I came home after working Ninth Block and have been completely lazy since.  I even took a short 30-minute nap.  Other than that, I ate dinner and watched way too many hours of Project Runway.  I didn't workout yesterday, so I really should've gone today, but I am just SO...UNMOTIVATED.

    I don't know what to do with myself!  I'm hoping this funk is just going to last these two days (boys, again: it's a girl thing).  I mean, I have goals to reach!

    Plus, it's been absolutely gorgeous the last few days, and I know I shouldn't waste it.  I hate winter: the snow, the ice, the gray skies, everything.  I need to get outside and take advantage of the sun, the bright blue sky, the awesome temperatures.  I. NEED TO. BADLY

    Also preventing me from reaching those aforementioned goals: buying meringues at the store.  OMG.  Bad news.  I thought they were a good treat because it's only 120 calories for four cookies, but it's not so great when you eat the entire package.  Never again.


    Someone please find me motivation to get my butt in gear.  I need it.  Desperately.