Friday, September 2, 2011

Friday Night "Leftovers" (Back-to-School Edition)

Whew! The last 2 weeks have been a whirlwind of back-to-school busy-ness.

The amazing, wonderful Danifred over at Sippycups are Not for Starbucks often hosts "Friday Night Leftovers" in which bloggers can post random list-like updates that don't necessarily pertain to only one topic.... I thought I'd bounce out of my blogging lull by joining in the fun.

So now the "Leftovers..." The things I've been experiencing and mulling over the past few weeks.

--Em started first grade! And she turns 7 in 2 weeks....Such a beautiful young lady inside and out. I am grateful for her each day and can't believe how quickly she is growing up. Sighs.
--She seems to be adjusting to first grade pretty well. She was disappointed the first few days of school because only 2 of the 18 students from her kindergarten class are in her 1st grade class this year. (One is the class bully who always had a desk by himself while the other kindergartners sat in tables of 4....the kid who punched Emma in the arm when I was sitting right beside her on the bus ride for the zoo field trip last year....GRRRRR! The other is a sweet, super quiet girl whose primary language is Spanish...she and Emma get along, but Em tends to play with more "extroverted" kids.) Her other former classmates were dispersed to other 1st grade classes.
--Today marks the end of week #2 of school and Emma has made friends and shared stories of playing and interacting with her new classmates.
--She is excited to have her own desk and own books/notebooks/supplies (versus "community" markers, etc.) this year. While the desks are pushed together to form "tables," she still has a bit of independence, which is right up her alley.
--Her school opted to instate a uniform policy this year. (Yes, it's a public school.) Navy, white, or red polo shirt or plain t-shirt with khaki or navy pants/shorts/skirt/jumper. Emma has made me smile with her individuality as she wears socks and hair accessories that don't necessarily "coordinate" with her school attire. But I must say thus far getting ready in the morning has been SOOOOO much easier! No more battles and trying to re-negotiate on outfits chosen the night before.

Pics of Emma's first day:

Not sure what the kid in the background is so "surprised" about.

Notice the skull socks? A gift from my older sister, Michelle. If I remember correctly, Emma was wearing a pink hair bow in the back of her hair. I love my girl!

--Our 13th wedding anniversary is this weekend. (Which means we've been "together" for 16 years total---wow! Nearly half of my lifetime!) I am so fortunate to have him as a life partner. He helps me through highs and lows, cooks better and more frequently than I do, is a superb daddy for our Emma, and helps me to be a better person. Love ya, Aaron!
--Continues to keep on keepin' on with his writing. While still marketing his novel trying to obtain a literary agent, he has started writing yet another novel...amazing. I continue to be awed by his perseverance.

--My parents are coming to visit for Emma's birthday and are going to visit Disney World with us for two days! I am SOOOOO excited about this! They haven't been to Disney since I was a baby in the baby-pack on my Dad's back. I'm stoked to watch them interact with Emma while we show them around the parks. Emma has been watching and re-watching the Disney vacation planning DVD (free from the park website!) and talking non-stop about the rides and activities she wants to do with Grandma and Grandpa. Of course I always look forward to visiting with my parents, but this particular visit will likely have a special kind of magic. :)

--We have a new 6th grade administrator this year. He has helped to initiate amazing changes at my school. Though only the end of the 2nd week, we've had the smoothest opening-of-school since I started working at this school. There is a sense of calm and structure instead of the frenzied chaos of the last 2 years. Crossing my fingers that it lasts all school year...
--This Monday when I arrived at work there was a vase of carnations on my desk. The attached card was from my principal. The card thanked me for being the reading department head and stated that "children grow to love learning thanks to (me.)" I was amazed...SO nice to be acknowledged! I confirmed at lunchtime that flowers were placed on the desks of all subject area department heads. What a wonderful beginning of the year gesture to thank us for the time and effort we put in for NO extra pay!

--I had planned to post and question whether anyone else had felt "OUCH" this week when seeing multiple F.acebook posts "supporting breast cancer awareness" by playing a posting game....The following is cut/pasted from multiple messages in my FB inbox:
Ok pretty ladies, it's that time of year again, in support of breast cancer awareness!! Remember last year so many people took part that it made national news and, the constant updating of status reminded everyone why we're doing this and helped raise awareness!! Do NOT tell any males what the status' mean, keep them guessing!! And please copy and paste (in a message )this to all your female friends to see if we can make a bigger fuss this year than last year!!! I did my part... now YOUR turn! The idea is to choose the month you were born and the day you were born. Pass this on to the girls only and lets see how far it reaches around. The last one about the bra went round all over the world. So you'll write... I'm (your birth month) weeks and I'm craving (your birth date)!!! as your status.

Example: Feb 14th = I'm 2 weeks and craving Chocolate mints!!
January-1 week
Febuary-2 weeks July-10 weeks
March-3 weeks August-12 weeks
April-4 weeks September-13 weeks
May-6 weeks October-14 weeks
June-8 weeks November-16 weeks
December-18 weeks

(I'm not posting the super long 31 item list of candies and treats to "crave.")

If I had "played" along, I'd post: "I'm 4 weeks and craving Crunchies." First of all, I don't even know what the hell Crunchies are. Secondly, I was silently hurting a bit by reading about the multiple fake pregnancies of several FB friends. I fail to understand how posting and pretending to be PG is "supporting" breast cancer awareness. My 1st thought was that many cancer survivors are infertile due to the chemo and medications they endure to fight cancer. My 2nd thought was-- why are we are "NOT telling any males" about the "game?" How the heck can something promote awareness if you "hide" the purpose behind it? UGH. I had an internal rant (longer than this) ready to post. Then, I came across a blog, linked on FB by an old high school friend. I LOVE it. I completely agree with many of the author's points...

CGWardPhotography--Regarding the FB Breast Cancer Awareness Games

As much as we all hate to be part of the IF-world, it was nice to read that I am not the only person who found the "game" insensitive. What are your thoughts on the issue?

--Hopefully in the next few weeks I'll catch up....I have a cool "wax hand" post I need to write. I also need to update my books read list and postings.
--Off to start the 3 day weekend! :)

Edit: Upon blog-surfing this morning, I came across an entry today by the wonderful Mel over at Stirrup Queens. Another excellent post about how the cancer awareness games are hurtful to those experiencing infertility issues.


Alana said...

I should add that I do not believe that anyone posted "the game" on FB with malicious intent. It's just as an IF-er anything pregnancy related pertains to an area of sensitivity for me... and the idea of "pretending" to be pregnant just seems unreal whether or not it supports a wonderful cause.

Jen said...

Alana - I couldn't agreem more about that stupid "I'm 8 weeks and craving skittles." I was really upset by the whole thing and debated back and forth about doing a status that would certainly offend half of my friends. So I quietly blocked all of those stupid posts and will wait for it to pass. I see you have been busy with getting back to school and my head has been pre-occupied but I'm looking forward to getting back to some normalcy come this fall. Glad to have an on-line bud to share it all with. Thanks for reading :)

Lollipop Goldstein said...

First of all, congratulations on the anniversary, the Disney trip, and Emma settling into first grade.

I couldn't agree more about the FB game. Who is behind these memes?

Lavender Luz said...

So many things going on in your life, Alana! Congrats on all of it!

Off to read Mel's post. I saw those things going around and I didn't know what they meant but they did give me an ooky feeling.

Danifred said...

That facebook game makes me nuts. How stupid- like what everyone is doing is REALLY helping raise awareness for breast cancer.

I love Em's personal touch with the school uniforms. I have to say, I think I'd be a fan of uniforms. It would definitely make getting ready in the morning so much easier.

Happy Anniversary to you! Hope it was a wonderful weekend.

St Elsewhere said...

Actually more than the mal-intent or anything, the fake pregnancy posts do NOT contribute anything to breast cancer awareness. I completely fail to see how the awareness would go up with funny pregnancy updates.

I hope Emma will have a good time in the first grade. And a very happy birthday to her in advance.

Not only that, a very happy anniversary to you guys. I hope the love and happiness in your marriage continues....Many blessings for that.

The new school administrator sounds good. Kudos to him for bringing such smooth change overall.

Carrie27 said...

Happy anniversary - are you and the hubby going to enjoy a night out?

A is doing what Emma did last year with clothes. We pick them out the night before and at least 2 out of the 5 days she changes her mind in the morning.

Which parks are you going to on your trip to Disney?

Anonymous said...

Way to go, Em! It is so wonderful that she has adapted and is doing so well! I hope you all had a fabulous time at Disney World, and Happy (Belated) Anniversary to you and your husband! I too am so impressed with his perseverence and dedication and hope big things happen for him!

And Alana? I was completely enraged on behalf of of the people in my life who have had to deal with any form of infertility or who have had to deal with breast cancer. I seriously hope the creator of that 'game' realized just how hurtful and unproductive the whole thing was.

Jen said...

I'm so far behind, I'm playing catch up on everything...Emma is such a sweet looking girl. We have that same uniform policy (same colors and all) for my kids school, it's public as well, it makes it so much easier on me. Jealous of the disney trip, my kids want to go so bad. Congrats on your anniversary. I thought that game was stupid, and deleted every single post about it. Can't wait to see your new year updates