Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Report Cards, Coferences, and Sickness

I can't even believe how long it's been since I've posted. The last few weeks have been consumed with work as usual and getting first quarter report cards done for all 44 of my students. We had parent-teacher conferences last Wednesday and Thursday, and had to give report cards to parents at that time. The meetings with families went well. We had to have a few tough conversations as usual, but they all went smoothly. Although it's a lot for my partner teacher and me to meet with all 44 families, it's nice to have someone else there with you to back you up if needed. A couple of years ago she was out of the country during conferences and I had to meet with everyone by myself. That was no fun! I sure made them short, sweet, and to the point. That makes "normal" conferences look good! This year was sort of weird because we had 27 appointments on Wednesday. It was pretty crazy and we went non-stop from 1:20 to 8:00. Thursday felt nice, though.

What made conferences tough was that I was starting to get sick. I had been feeling slightly feverish and my throat was hurting. When I got home on Thursday night and sat down on the couch, I was fully sick. After spending all of Friday and Saturday on the couch or in bed with a fever, I was pretty sure I had strep throat. By Sunday it was clear that I would not be making it to work on Monday, so I got a sub and wrote a plan (which makes being sick even more miserable by creating extra work). I was able to get in to see the doctor yesterday who confirmed my diagnosis. She told me that I should wait to go back to work until tomorrow. I'm glad she did because I would not have made it through the day today. Both tomorrow and Thursday will be busy days at school, so I'm trusting for strength.

I will have a lot of catching up to do this weekend, which I'm not looking forward to, but hopefully the weekend will bring some fun as well. I doubt we'll have any trick-or-treaters on Friday since we have a dark and mostly kid-less neighborhood. I should probably get some candy anyway. Who knows, this could be the year that some kids decide to come by. I'm sure I could just eat it myself if no one shows up!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Football Sunday

Kirk and I are enjoying a relaxing Sunday afternoon watching football. After another 50+ hour week at work, it's especially nice to lay down on the couch for a while and rest. The dogs were quite happy about it as well. It's gotten much colder in the last two days, so we'll have to turn the heat on soon, which I'm not looking forward to doing. For now, a blanket will do. It's about time to get the long sleeved shirts and sweaters out too.

Kirk's Jaguars beat the local favorites, the Broncos, which was pretty fun. I had to follow the Packers online, but was happy that they beat the Seahawks. We played each other today in our fantasy league, so we were following that as well. In our last match up a few weeks ago, I won. The predicted scores had me ahead this time as well, but as the games progressed, my chances of winning dwindled quickly.

I was able to get quite a bit done on my report cards this weekend, which is great. I'll finish them next weekend and then give them to parents at conferences in a week and a half. It will be a relief when that's all done. I'm sure that conferences will go well, but there's just to much work to do to get ready for them and then two eleven hour days of talking.

Another thing I've been working on lately is reading our ridiculously long state ballot information booklet. Colorado has 14 amendments to the state constitution on the ballot this year and four referendum questions. Some of them I'm clearly for or against, but others are so hard to figure out and not as black or white. Plus there are a bunch of judges to decide whether to retain or not and several local ballot issues to consider. That's not even including all the candidates in the national, state, and local races! As Kirk and I were discussing some of this yesterday, I told him that we had better plan on having quite a bit of time when we go to cast our votes. We are certainly blessed to live in a free country where we have the right and freedom to vote, but I wonder how many people in Colorado (and I'm sure many other states) will not take the time to vote on some of these amendments, referendums, and judges because it takes so long to figure them out. I think that I will try to go vote early, because I really don't want to spend my birthday (which coincides with election day this year) thinking about it.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Feeling Like Fall

The weather changed quite a bit this last weekend and made it feel much more like fall.  It was cool, overcast, and very rainy.  I took advantage of the weather to light the candles in the living room and enjoy their soft light.  I also baked some rolls stuffed with turkey pepperoni and cheese for dinner.  

Kirk spent the weekend in the mountains at a men's camp.  He said that the fall colors were beautiful up there.  It was much colder and actually snowed on them.  

I spent the weekend working on projects at home.  I decided to get a head start on my report cards that are due for parent-teacher conferences in two weeks.  Unfortunately I only have about an eighth of the work done, but at least they're started, so the next two weekends will bring much of the same.  I spent quite a few hours making games for my students as well.  My partner teacher and I have been developing lots of learning games to use in our classrooms.  Some are based on ideas that we have gotten from books and others we have just made up.  It's something that we both enjoy, so it's fun to get to school on Monday and share what we've each created.  We were asked to share our games and ideas with the rest of our staff this Friday, so we're trying to have some good ones ready.