Saturday, September 5, 2009

When it Rains, it Pours...

Wowie, the old idiom when it rains, it pours has been true literally and figuratively this week...
(And begging your pardon in advance, as the following may turn into a giant venting post.)

Weather: Though only the 5th day of September, we've already had TONS of rain. This makes escorting my class to/from the cafeteria a daily adventure, as we dodge puddles and try to avoid rainfall leaking through the roof of the outdoor walkway. Good times, great fun. Seriously though, I heard on the news that in the first 2 days of the month we had OVER the amount of rainfall usually gained the entire month.

Family: DH's Great-Uncle Charles died last week. DH's dad and sister were able to drive from Jacksonville to Ohio for the funeral. As Peggy and Charles lived next door to DH's Mamma, we would always see them during our visits. Wonderful, kind-hearted people. Our thoughts and prayers are with Peggy this week. I hate that we were unable to attend the services.

Car: We ended up taking my car to the shop FOUR times before they adequately fixed the problem causing the "check engine" light to come on.
1st time---diagnostic test; at our regular car shop $56 (price lowered from $80 when they said the tests indicated there might be a leak, but it was something they didn't have equipment to test further for. "If light comes on again, take it to the dealer." Ack!)
2nd time---new gas cap; at Dealer $10
3rd time---replaced part of hose/gas line; at Dealer $42
4th time---replaced charcoal filter (I think...something with charcoal...I'm forgetting exact name); at Dealer $46
UGH. As of yesterday the light hasn't come on again. You know how Murphy's Law of Cars works, right? The light didn't come on allllll summer when DH or I would drive the car. But the first day of teacher planning the light came on as I was driving to work. Sheesh! At least now it seems to be taken care of. And I'm grateful we were able to fix it for only $150...when our regular fix-it place referred us to the Dealer, I was concerned we'd get hosed for big $$$.

School: Including myself there are 4 teachers in the reading department at my school. Last week one of the teachers, Ms. J was promoted to a Standards Instructional Coach position. Thus, she has a long-term sub. This meant that I had to help the sub with logging students into the computer software, as our district deadline for ALL reading students to be tested is this Friday. (Note: A new teacher, Ms. Y was hired. Her start date is Tuesday 9/8.)

On Tuesday of this week, the lone guy in our department received news that his mother had died. (On a side note---his brother TEXTED him the UNEXPECTED news while he was teaching. What bullshit!!! I couldn't believe his brother wouldn't call the school to pull Mr. B out of class instead of broadsiding him with the news while he was in front of a class of 6th graders!) So, Mr. B was out from half of Tuesday through the duration of the week. And I had to help his sub with logging students on the computer software for testing.

Add to this that department heads received an "urgent" email on Monday requesting that we take a TDE ("temporary duty elsewhere") day on Tuesday because the principal received news that our School Improvement Plan (SIP) was DUE on WEDNESDAY instead of on 9/11 as she had previously been told. ACCCCCK! So, Monday afternoon was spent prepping for a sub. And while I truly appreciate and applaud anyone who is willing to substitute, I think I speak for most teachers when I say---it is a HUGE pain in the arse preparing for substitutes! I would much rather TEACH and be in class MYSELF than have to prepare lessons for a sub. My biggest issue is that my reading classroom is set to have 3 rotation groups---independent reading, computer software, and small group with the teacher---each day. But since all my kids hadn't finished testing yet, I was unable to have them rotate to the computer software group. This left me scrambling to find a curriculum-appropriate activity for students to complete instead.

Tuesday was spent in the conference room in our school media center working on the SIP. During "breaks," I would check in with the subs in Ms. J and Mr. B's room to see how the testing of their students was going. And of course this is the day that our S.cholastic rep for the R.ead180 program picked to "drop by" our school. So I met with him and reviewed the technology, equipment, classroom libraries, etc from each of our reading classrooms.

Wednesday...a mostly normal day.

Thursday...the second Instructional Leadership Team (department heads and administrators) meeting for the year occurred before school. Apparently myself and 4 other department heads missed the email that went out Wednesday evening saying the meeting had been moved from 8:45 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. (Um, yeah....Em has gymnastics on Weds nights, so I hadn't checked my email since 7th period.) So I arrived late. Oops. Apologized to my principal after the meeting. She said not to worry, she found out she had to move the meeting because until our new contract is signed, she isn't allowed to hold meetings during our morning planning time. Doh!

After the meeting, Thursday was a normal day. I had to stay late after school to prepare for a substitute, as I was previously signed up for a training session on Friday. (Are you catching this? This makes TWO days this week that I had a substitute.)

Friday...I attended a really great training session. The session was about our R.ead180 software and the county's goals for reading classrooms this year. VERY informative. I'm glad I attended! Yea!

This coming Tuesday is my school's Open House. And the "testing window" for students closes this week. I'm hoping that means things will be less busy by the end of the week!

So now it is Saturday, and I am WIPED out! :)

DH: Today is DH's and my 11th wedding anniversary. (Thank you, sweet DH for putting up with me! Especially during this crazy back-to-school time of year! I'm proud of you sticking to your guns and writing, writing, writing. Can't wait to read your first draft! Muchas smooches!)

Emma: I can't believe my little girl will be FIVE in 2 weeks. Where does the time go?? Today she was thrilled when we took her to purchase booster seats for our cars. She FINALLY meets the height/weight requirement to not need a "car seat." Though DH and I cracked up...the label on the booster seat box says "For 40 pounds to 100 pounds. This seat can be used for 4 to 10 year olds." If DH's petite grandmother and aunt are any indication of Em's future....I think she is very unlikely to be 100 pounds at ten years old. (Though one of the oldest in her class, she continues to be one of the smallest.) We got a kick out of visualizing Emma riding to the prom in a booster seat. Lol!

Em continues to be very excited about school. I love her zest for learning. (Wish more of my 8th graders were still "into" school!) She was super excited this week to tell us at dinner that her class will be going on field trips "on a real bus" this year. Too sweet!


On nuisances:
"Daddy, you're getting on my nerds!" (ROFL. Nerds, nerves...whatever.)

Regarding food re-heating:
"Can you put it in the microwave and hot it down?"
(Really, why do we heat UP and cool DOWN? Why not 'hot it down?')

On man's best friend:
"Dogs are just like people, except they can't climb trees or watch movies."
(Um...yeah. And I can't lick my butt. And Viggo can't cook dinner. But who's keeping track?)


sklay723 said...

Happy anniversary to you both!

I think I'm one of the few people in Florida who actually doesn't mind the rain. :) And sounds like a crazy school you're so glad it's a three-day weekend! Take care and enjoy what's left of it.

Carrie27 said...

Happy Anniversary, I hope the two of you find some time to got out this weekend.

What a crazy week, and I agree that having a sub is so much more work. I, also, had a sub two days this week. I feel like I'm still playing catch-up from it all.

Sunny said...

Happy anniversary to you and DH!! :D

What a busy time for you, wow. I hope it starts to settle down so you can catch a breath!

Fishsticks and Fireflies said...

Yikes! That is a lot of things going on all at once! Happy Anniversary - I hope you and your hubby are able to enjoy some time together.

Mrs. Gamgee said...

Oh so many things to comment on...

Happy Anniversary!

I can't believe that your co-worker was texted that his mom died! That is horendous!

I have to know... would Emma's b-day be on the 18th? September is a great birthday month and the 18ths is an especially good day...

Florida rain... I miss that a little... just a little

And those Emma-isms totally rock! Thanks for the chuckle

tbonegrl said...

happy anniversary!

That is a totally crazy week. I'm right there with you in the same boat it seems! Hang in there! I know by October it'll settle down a bit for me!

Danifred said...

Happy Anniversary :)

The fact that, as a teacher, you can't just be sick and not still work is exactly one of the reasons I'm now longer in the classroom. Ugh!

The Emmaisms are always my favorite!!!