Monday, January 31, 2011

Weekend recap

This weekend I went to Raleigh to relax, visit friends, and have a little bit of a change of pace. I was completely lame and didnt take any pictures. I seriously need to work on the whole picture-taking thing.

Friday I drove up to Raleigh with Mere Bear in tow. I met my friend Amanda at her apartment and we went out to dinner at the Village Draft House. I had this delicious portobello pita with sauteed peppers and onions- it was sooo good! Later that night we went out to meet some friends from high school that were in the area and we went out to a couple of different places.

Amanda had to work for most of the day on Saturday so I lounged around for the day, took Mere to the dog park, and just enjoyed having the day off. Meredith used to LOVE going to the dog park, but I guess she has gotten quite used to being Queen B around the house (being the youngest of the dogs that hang around) and wasn't so sure about the dog park at first. I guess since it has been like 8 months since she has had that interaction with THAT many dogs, but she warmed up to it eventually. I think I am going to have to research doggy daycares and take her like once a month or so to doggy day care to get used to being around other animals that DONT live in our house.

Anyways, Saturday night we hung out with my old roommate Katy and watched the movie "Grown Ups." Sunday was pretty laid back and I left mid-afternoon to take Mere back to the dog park and then drive home. I know it doesnt SOUND like a fabulous weekend but I think it was just what the doctor ordered!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Currently Reading...

I have two books that I am working on- The Secret Life of Bees and Animal Farm. I am actually really surprised that I havent read animal farm yet with as much reading as I do, but I just have never picked it up! So far its been a pretty fast read. I started it at the gym yesterday when I was on the elliptical and went through the first part of it pretty quickly.

I am considering teaching The Secret Life of Bees to my 9th graders after they finish up their unit on Anthem, but I actually have to read it first before I make that decision :) I started this the other night before bed and didnt even get out of the first chapter because I was so tired that I fell asleep, but that is no indication of the worth of the book! I know that there is a movie based on this book, has anyone seen it? Is it any good?

Stay tuned for updates when I finish these books! I am also working on a post about other books that I have read lately, but it will be a few days before that one is up!

What are you reading lately?


Today at my internship we had a lockdown... for 2.5 hours. When it started, we all thought it was a drill; when the lockdown lasted... and lasted... and lasted, we knew that it was in fact NOT a drill. No, there wasnt a crazy inside the school that I was in but there was a prank caller to the school and they took it very seriously. I am glad that the situation wasn't serious in the sense that there was real, bonafide danger, but I am very annoyed at the fact that I had to sit in the floor, miss my planning period, and deal with students who weren't taking the lockdown seriously. Even after it was announced that this was a real situation, the students didnt seem to think it was a big deal. I am, however, very grateful that everything turned out OK and that no one was hurt.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What I'm loving Wednesday!

his is my first link up with Jamie over at This Kind of Love, but I've seen this weekly posting over the past several weeks and decided that today is the day!!

  • I'm loving my internship! I have an awesome clinical teacher, I am at an awesome school, and I have awesome students. I am sure that my students will think that I am absolutely CRAZY after the lesson that I have planned for this afternoon's class, but that's ok- you have to keep them on their toes!!
  • I'm loving my family.
  • I'm loving my sweet puppy dog Meredith Grace
    • I'm loving that I have a trip to Raleigh planned for this weekend to see all of my MCG's (Meredith College Girls for all of you who aren't familiar with that acronym).

    • I'm loving my new professional dresses and my new boots I bought last week. I will have to take pictures of them and share them, seriously!
    • I'm loving the LeanCuisine microwave steam bags that I found last night at the grocery store. They look de-lish!
    And that's all that I can think about right now!

    What are you loving this week?!

    Tuesday, January 25, 2011


    So yesterday I went the entire day without facebook! (It's ok, you all can gasp now...) and you know what? I did not miss it one bit. Granted, yesterday as a crazy busy day between the internship and then high tailing it to Greenville for a meeting and class, but thats ok! I think maybe I should restrict FB to the weekends (at least for now while I am in this internship), but we'll see how THAT goes!

    I "taught" my first class yesterday. I know I talked entirely too fast when going over the Course Outline and I am sure the kids were resentful of the fact that I gave them a reading assessment on the first day, but what can you do? I wanted to go ahead and get that mandatory assessment out of the way so that we can move on to bigger and better things in our class. I hope that I did a good job of explaining that I want to have fun with our class, but there are certain things that we *have* to do which aren't so fun. I tried to emphasize that, when possible, I would make the activities fun and relevant. We will see how today goes because there will be actual instruction instead of all that housekeeping!

    Happy Tuesday!

    Sunday, January 23, 2011

    Project 52: Self Portrait

    This picture encompasses me: Me+Meredith+ Photography +Meredith Bling= my self portrait~

    See list of topics here.

    Just a few things....

    ~I need a blog overhaul. I will be working on this soon, and it may take me awhile but I want to make my blog more ME. So I do apologize if my blog looks like a mess for awhile!

    ~I realized today that I need to spend less time on facebook and more time in the "real world." I think I would be happier if I spent less time on facebook and watching tv, things that are meaningless in the long run, if I spent more time pursuing my interests and with real, live interactions. Facebook is good for some things, like keeping up with friends who live far away, but its sad when it gets to the point that this is the first thing you click on when you stgart up your computer and you are constantly going back to it. Similarly, TV is great for relaxing, but I find myself coming home, turning it on, and leaving it on until I go to bed. Imagine if I spent that time playing with Meredith, reading a good book, or taking pictures?

    ~My internship is going REALLY well so far and I am LOVING going to NBH every day instead of worrying about college classes. The faculty is really great and have done an excellent job of making me feel welcome and a part of the team. Students come tomorrow!

    ~Something that I am a little concerned about is this new portfolio that I have to do this semester. I missed the meeting that explained how this new portfolio worked due to snow, so I feel completely lost on it. I am supposed to get caught up on everything tomorrow, but even people that were able to go to the initial meeting are lost, so I dont feel so good about that.

    ~I never thought that I would say this, but I am SOOO tired of snow! Normally snow is something that we here in Eastern NC get once in a blue moon and it is such a treat when we do, this year we have had snow three times so far and we haven't even hit the time of winter that we normally get snow.

    I HEART accessories swap

    Last week I signed up for the "I heart accessories swap" with MJ over at Teaching in Heels. I am so excited about the swap! My partner is Dana over at Enjoy Yourself. Her blog is so cute and so inspiring so I think you should go over and take a look! I think the whole concept of having a blog dedicated to things that make you happy is a great idea! I can't wait to hear back from Dana about the accessories she loves so that I can find something fabulous!

    I've actually seen the 30 in 30 challenge (with Kendi over at Kendi Everyday) and really wanted to do the challenge, but find myself lacking in the accessories area, which would make the challenge kind of a flop. I can't create cute and fun outfits out of 30 articles of clothes for 30 whole days without accessories to make it fun and well, a challenge. Maybe I get my accessories in gear (with the help of this swap of course) and be ready for the next 30 for 30 challenge?

    Be on the lookout for my post in a couple of weeks showing the results of the I heart accessories swap!

    Monday, January 17, 2011

    An emotional train wreck...

    So I dont know what my deal is today, but I have been rather emotional (which is odd because I am not really an emotional person, like at ALL).

    This morning I was reading my Aunt's blog and in her post from today she linked to another post from the blog Enjoying the Small Things and I read the whole thing and was boohooing like a little baby girl. All I wanted to do after reading this post was run downstairs, pick up little Rachel, and hold her tight. (Rachel is my 3 month old cousin)

    THEN today on my way into my post-op appointment at the ENT I was listening to Michael Buble's CD "Crazy Love" and listened to the song "Hold On" and I was boohooing again! I just thought that this song was so beautiful and would be *perfect* for like a first dance at a wedding. *sigh* Now if only I could find the guy :) hahaha...

    Didn't they always say we were the lucky ones?
    I guess that we were once
    Babe, we were once

    But luck will leave you cause
    It is a faithless friend
    And in the end when life has got you down
    You've got someone here that you can wrap your arms around

    So hold on to me tight
    Hold on to me tonight
    We are stronger here together
    Than we could ever be alone
    So hold on to me
    Don't you ever let me go

    There's a thousand ways for things to fall apart
    But it's no one's fault
    No it's not my fault

    Maybe all the plans we made would not work out
    But I have no doubt even though it's hard to see
    I've got faith in us and I believe in you and me

    So hold on to me tight
    Hold on, I promise it'll be alright
    Cause it's you and me together
    And baby all we've got is time
    So hold on to me, hold on to me tonight

    There's so many dreams that we have given up
    Take a look at all we've got
    And with this kind of love
    What we've got here is enough

    So hold on to me tight
    Hold on, I promise it'll be alright
    Cause we are stronger here together
    Then we could ever be alone
    Just hold on to me
    Don't you ever let me go
    Hold on to me, it's gonna be alright
    Hold on to me tonight
    They always say we were the lucky ones

    Sunday, January 16, 2011

    Busy blogger...

    I know that I've been a busy blogger today with so many posts, but I had some catching up to do! I just wanted to share one last picture with you today before I start gearing down for the night.

    One day I walked out in the garage and I saw my Aunt's cat ready for a bike ride :)

    Mere's Snow Day

    Just thought that I would share some pictures from Mere's snow day a couple of weeks ago. I thought that I had already posted these pictures, but I guess not! Meredith is a strange, strange dog, she doesn't like to get wet and yet she loves the snow!!!

    This is my favorite shot of her. I love the snow on her nose, she is just too cute!

    Waiting For Superman

    I just finished the book "Waiting for Superman" that was based off of the movie that recently came out. Before I begin my review, I want to emphasize that I have not seen the movie, which I hear has gotten a lot of negative reviews from the educational community. The book has also gotten its fair share of negative criticism, but I think the criticism is largely coming from people who have seen the movie. I think most educators believe that the filmmaker was putting an unfair amount of blame on teachers and teacher's unions for where our educational system is today. I just want to say that the following review is *my* opinion as a teacher in training, and I have a right to have this opinion!

    I really enjoyed the book. The book was a collection of essays written by people on different topics of education and how they believe that we can help the current state of our school system. Let's face it, our schools are in serious trouble. I think that the book brought up some very valid points, and I dont really feel that it puts too much blame on teachers and teacher's unions. The book pointed out many reasons why our school system is currently failing our children, and bad teachers are only part of the problem. The book was careful to point out that not all teachers are bad teachers, and that the majority of teachers out there are very hardworking and committed individuals. With that being said, we also have a stigma in this country that "if you can't do, teach" and there are people who are in our classrooms who don't belong there. One of the major problems that the book pointed out is the stigma attached to being a teacher, that the position of teacher is not held with respect in our country and that is a major problem. People who are out in the "real world" think that teaching is a joke of a career and the current salaries for our teachers proves that. I think the prevailing message of the book was that we shouldn't be sitting around waiting for some miracle of a cure for our school systems because there are students right now in our schools that need our attention and best efforts to educate them. There will never be one set miracle cure for our schools, so we shouldn't wait around for one~ I could go on a soapbox rant of all of the points that I agreed with in this book, but I will spare you for the time being. No, I didnt agree with everything in this book, but I still was interested in the different arguments it did raise. I will leave you with a recommendation to read it and encourage you to see for yourself how you feel about the issues raised in the book.

    Coke Zero

    I wrote the following essay in one of my classes last semester. It was just a free write during class, the topic was your favorite beverage. When I started it, that was my intention but it turned into a reaction piece that was reacting to the birth of my cousin and some unforseen complications. Never fear! Rachel is doing BEAUTIFULLY now and has brought a lot of joy into my life (and my family's lives) since her arrival!

    Coke Zero is the greatest beverage of all time, hands down. I discovered this tasty combination of flavors bursting with delightful bubbles inside your mouth about a year and a half ago and have been hooked ever since. Seriously, once you go Coke Zero, you never go back. Coke Zero combines enjoyably delicious flavors including vanilla and cassis (like cinnamon, only better) and it tastes even better than traditional Coca-Cola. There is no other way to describe it- it’s delicious! Coke Zero may be so delicious that you have a hard time wrapping your mind around the thought of it having nothing bad in it, but it’s the truth: Coke Zero is all of the good and none of the bad. It has no calories, no fat, no carbohydrates- its pure goodness. Coke Zero is like water, only tastier. Sure Coke Zero has some sodium in it, but let’s face it: we’re Americans and we love sodium.

    In this world, it is very difficult to find something that is all good and no bad. Some things that are supposed to be pure joy (all good) can in the blink of an eye have this nasty haze over them. Take, for instance, the birth of a baby. This is a joyous occasion for a family to be able to welcome a new life into the world, but sometimes even something as happy and wonderful as a baby being born can turn ugly. There can be complications, things that the doctors didn’t catch in the million ultrasounds that the mother has prior to birth. There can be health issues that couldn’t be avoided, despite the doctors and medical experts’ best efforts. There could be the chance that everything isn’t quite right- and then what? Suddenly, an event that was supposed to bring so much joy and happiness into the lives of the family and loved ones turns into one that brings pain, fear, and a whole lot of questions. What happens next? Why us? Why this child? What do we do? Is everything going to be ok?

    This turn of events from good to bad can happen to anything. Just like Alanis Morrisette’s song “Isn’t it Ironic?” so truthfully depicts, things just go wrong. Rain on your wedding day, free rides when you’ve already paid, good advice that you didn’t take, and so on. All events that are supposed to be good- the union of two people in love, a free ride, good advice- all with a sour tinge to them- rain, having already paid, not taking the good advice. Never fear though, this doesn’t happen with Coke Zero! Every time you pop open a can of this trusty beverage, you know what you’re going to get: all of the good, and none of the bad.

    Project 52: Food

    Breakfast of Champions

    I wanted to do something really artsy for this post, but I think this picture says it all! See list of topics for project 52 here.

    Thursday, January 13, 2011

    A very fishy tale

    Look at that face. Cute, right? Well don't let her fool you!

    A few days ago my Grandma let her dog Holly out for a little while and Holly came back smelling like fish. She smelled TERRIBLE! Holly is a pretty old dog and doesnt stray very far from the house, but we do live on the river so it isnt SO far fetched for one of the dogs coming back smelling a little fishy. However, Holly smelled like she took a nice long soak in a tub of flounder. Needless to say, Holly got booted out to the garage for the rest of the evening/night. After being in the garage for less than 30 minutes, she had the entire garage REEKING from her scent. She got a rinse-free shampoo bath the next day to get rid of the scent. One thing about Holly is that she has a LOT of hair and despite my Grandma's best efforts, Holly still smelled fishy and nasty. I was just glad that Meredith didn't find the fish and roll around in it...

    .....until yesterday.

    That's right. I came home and my Grandma told me that she had found what Holly had gotten into and it was a wrapped up piece of fish, like it belonged in someone's freezer. Odd. A little while later I let Meredith out and she came back smelling like fish! What in the world? Her doggy spray couldnt mask the odor, the rinse-free shampoo couldnt mask it, nothing works! I know this makes me sound like a really bad dog mom, and believe me I am not, but I even tried febreeze on her!!! It is THAT bad. After febreeze I finally doused her in some of my good perfume and that covered it enough to where I could stand her to sleep in my room last night, but I still smell it on her when I go to pet her or snuggle up to her and that just isnt going to fly. She even spent time out in the outside kennel today, I was hoping she would like air out or something, to no avail.

    Has anyone else had to get a really smelly dog smelling fresh again? What did you do? I'm desperate!!!!

    Oh, and apparently my Aunt found some frozen peas in our back yard yesterday so we think our dogs are getting into some mischief over at someone else's house. Yikes!

    Tuesday, January 11, 2011

    11 in 2011: What you are Looking Forward to in 2011

    I have high hopes for 2011, and am therefore looking forward to many new and wonderful things! Some of the top things that I am looking forward to are:

    * my internship at the local high school
    * completing my Master's degree in June
    * getting my first "big girl" job
    * starting my adult life with hopefully a new place to live
    * spending time with my family, friends, and cutie patootie of a puppy

    What are you looking forward to?

    Monday, January 10, 2011

    Canker Sores= Cranky Me

    Canker sores have taken over my mouth. It sucks pretty hardcore. My recovery from this surgery would be FINE if it werent for these stupid sores that have taken over my mouth, they hurt worse than any post-surgery pain! Its pretty terrible, I am not going to lie.... I have a sore under either side of my tongue, a couple on top of my tongue, and now I have one on the roof of my mouth. If all of these stupid things would just go away, life would be grand.

    Sorry about the rant but I am ready to eat normally again!

    11 in 2011: Favorite Girls' Night out Events

    While at Meredith I had MANY "girls' night outs." On Girls' Night Out, my friends and I like to....

    - pose silly for pictures (this is the classic "first grade photo")

    - smile awkwardly at the camera because we are afraid of awkward guys....

    - dress up and have photo shoots....

    - have awesome dance parties....

    One of our other favorite things to do is to go and see an 80's tribute band called The Breakfast Club. They're awesome. Check them out if you get a chance.

    What are your favorite Girls' Night Out events?

    * sorry for the tiny pictures, blogger wouldnt let me make them any bigger for some reason?!

    Sunday, January 9, 2011

    Project 52: Black and White

    For the first week of project 52, I am going to cheat. *Gasp* Week 1 and I am already cheating?!

    Since I dont want to have to play catch-up on my posts, I am going to post some black and whites that I already have taken and I will actually take NEW pictures for week 2 of project 52. Sound good? Good.

    The following three pictures are my most favorite black and white pictures that I think I have ever taken. I took them with a manual Minolta camera that is ancient and developed them in a photography course I took a few years ago.

    With this last picture, I love the dramatic difference between the light and the shadows.

    What do you think?!

    Project 52- sounds delightful!

    So I have recently started following a ton of new blogs due to the "11 in 2011" blog thingy that I am doing and I love it! It has opened my eyes to all sorts of new posts and ideas for my blog to hopefully spice things up on this here blog of mine and really get the ball rolling!

    If you recall, one of my hopes/goals for 2011 is to work on my photography skills more. Several of the new people I am following are doing this cool thing called Project 52. Project 52 is basically where you post a photo a week (for 52 weeks, aka the year) that you took that you think personifies a certain pre-set category. I'm in!

    Here are the categories!

    Week 1 - Black & White
    Week 2 - Food
    Week 3 - Self Portrait
    Week 4 - Reflection

    Week 5 - Ennui

    Week 6 - Red
    Week 7 - Time
    Week 8 - Pink
    Week 9 - Patterns
    Week 10 - Morning
    Week 11 - Round
    Week 12 - Hands
    Week 13 - Shine
    Week 14 - Envy
    Week 15 - Soft
    Week 16 - Perspective
    Week 17 - Love
    Week 18 - Start
    Week 19 - Free
    Week 20 - Texture
    Week 21 - Toys
    Week 22 - Downtown
    Week 23 - Summer
    Week 24 - Heat
    Week 25 - Fantasy
    Week 26 - Water
    Week 27 - Shadows
    Week 28 - Light
    Week 29 - Night
    Week 30 - Macro
    Week 31 - Nature
    Week 32 - Clothes

    Week 33 - Green
    Week 34 - Map
    Week 35 - Laughter
    Week 36 - Child(ren)
    Week 37 - Yellow
    Week 38 - Candy
    Week 39 - Pets
    Week 40 - Never Ending
    Week 41 - Sports
    Week 42 - Books
    Week 43 - Blue
    Week 44 - Letter of the Alphabet
    Week 45 - Innocence
    Week 46 - Most Important Thing in Life
    Week 47 - Heaps
    Week 48 - Family
    Week 49 - Favorite Spot
    Week 50 - Metal
    Week 51 - Three
    Week 52 - Fun

    Stay tuned for my project 52 posts!!!

    * I found this list on several of the blogs that I follow, but the one I *think* it originated from Jes over at Bleu Dress & Dress Blues

    11 in 2011: Favorite Things to Do on a Cold Winter Day

    I dont really get a lot of COLD winter days since I live in Eastern NC, but I do enjoy it when they do come around!
    I am not much of a hot drink kind of girl, I have always drank my coffee/tea/whatever as tepid, not hot- so that is not one of my favorite activities. HOWEVER, I can say that I do enjoy other traditional cold winter's day activities!
    * Cuddling up with a soft blanket and taking a NAP
    * Reading a good book (snuggled up in a soft blanket)
    * Wearing FUZZY socks, oversized sweaters, and scarves.
    * TV/Movie marathons
    * Crafting!
    * (and more recently) playing with Meredith in the snow. That dog loves snow!

    What are your favorite cold winter day activities?

    Saturday, January 8, 2011

    11 in 2011: Favorite Healthy Snacks

    1. One of my favorite healthy snacks is hummus. You can eat hummus with pretty much anything, my favorite snack is to eat it with carrots (but you can eat it with any vegetables or even those delicious pita chips!)

    2. A very simple snack, but cheese and crackers is always a good, healthy snack. It would be best if the crackers were multigrain. I prefer sharp cheddar cheese!

    4. Tostito's Multigrain chips and salsa! YUM!

    4. Very classic, very simple- apples! I love to bite into a good apple, but this snack has only recently become a favorite of mine.

    I am really looking forward to reading other people's responses to this post because I am always looking for something healthy to snack on!

    Friday, January 7, 2011

    More on the tonsillectomy

    I thought that my tonsillectomy recovery was going to be a-typical. I read a LOT of horror stories prior to having this procedure done about how horrible the recovery was going to be, etc. The frist three days of my recovery were a breeze. Sure, my throat hurt a little and I was very tired due to the pain medications that I was on, but it wasnt unbearable. Yesterday, I was in some pain... and today, I am in even more pain. My scabs have started to come off, which is a good thing, it means that my throat is healing, but it hurts horribly bad! So today has been pretty painful, and I hope this is about the worst of it.

    To top it off, Meredith was very needy last night. I dont know if she was not feeling well herself, she was worried about me, or what, but I could not get her to settle down! Something you should know about Meredith is that she LOVES to go to bed. If it is past her bedtime and I am still awake, she will not stop harassing me until I am in bed with the lights out. She will groan, get in my way, or whatever else she can until I am settled in bed and she can curl up on her bed. However, last night she would not go to sleep! She kept sitting near my bed, resting her head next to me, and waking me up! It was like she was keeping guard over me or something, which is very cute, but it was very annoying when all I wanted to do was sleep!!!

    So let's hope for a night full of rest tonight and some relief from my painful throat issues!

    11 in 2011: Favorite Memory of 2010

    Favorite Memory of 2010

    Perhaps one of the most bittersweet days of my life, one of my fondest memories of 2010 was the day that I graduated from Meredith College. I loved my time at Meredith, all of the traditions I experienced and the memories that were formed there, and I was sad to see my time there come to an end.

    Thursday, January 6, 2011

    11 in 2011: Best Organization Tips

    I have a sick obssession where I LOVE to organize things, so this topic really caught my eye! My BEST organization tip, which sounds a little weird, is micro-manage!

    For example, the books on my book shelf are divided into several categories:
    - American Lit
    - British Lit
    - World Lit
    - Contemporary Lit
    - Children's Lit
    - Teaching Books
    - Teaching of English Books
    - etc

    Then, each shelf is alphabetized by author's last name. A bit obsessive? Maybe.

    My files on my computer are also micro-managed, into folders, but even more micro-managed than my book shelves.

    For example, I have one large "Teaching Materials" file. That file is then divided into the following folders: assessment, class beginnings, epics, grammar, lesson planning, lit activities, lit elements, miscellaneous, novels, plays, poetry, short stories, student resources, and writing. Each of those folders have folders inside of them (and some of those folders have even more folders inside of them) so that I can pinpoint my materials at a moment's notice.

    This is pretty much my most valuable tip when it comes to organization, because it is the tip that I live by when I organize anything. All of my stuff is organized in this way!!!

    Wednesday, January 5, 2011

    11 in 2011: Places you Hope to Go This Year

    This post was a little difficult because I don't really have any long-term plans other than finishing my Master's program and (hopefully) getting a job. I would like to take a few vacations this year, but I dont have any places in mind specifically yet. One place that I would really like to go, that I have been wanting to go to for a few years now, is the mountains during the fall. Its been several years since I have been to the mountains, and I dont necessarily have a specific destination picked out, but I would still like to go. Stay tuned to see if there are any surprise places I end up in 2011!

    Tonsillectomy recovery

    I had my tonsillectomy on Monday and I was pretty nervous going into it. I have never had any sort of procedure/surgery before and I didn't really know what to expect. My Mom took me in and my Grandma was there prior to and during the procedure to keep my Mom company.
    All I remember was being taken into the operating room and being told to take 2.5 breaths of the anesthesia. I took 2.5 more breaths and thought "well that didn't work out..." and that was it until I was in the recovery room! I was in the recovery room for a little over an hour and then sent home.
    I actually havent felt as bad and run down as I thought that I would. Monday night I managed to eat some ramen for dinner, but slept for most of the afternoon. Monday night wasn't very fun because I woke up every 1-1.5 hours to hydrate or pop some medicine in me. Yesterday I felt very nauseous and lightheaded all day long. I took several naps and just tried to rest as much as possible. Last night I didn't wake up quite as often as I had on Monday night. I just hope to continue getting better! My tonsils look pretty disgusting I am not going to lie, but overall it hasn't been as bad as I had feared! I will keep updating on my progress until I am all better :)

    Tuesday, January 4, 2011

    11 in 2011: Best Leftover Recipe

    While I LOVE to cook, I haven't had much time to spread my wings as a Chef yet. Last year, I lived in an apartment with a roommate, but we didn't really eat dinner together so I cooked mainly for myself. Cooking for one is a lot different than cooking for more than one! This year, I am living with my Grandparents and Aunt and Uncle in order to finish my Master's program and I dont really have time to cook dinner.

    So, while this technically doesn't count as a recipe, one of my favorite things to do with "left-overs" is make fried rice out of left-over rice. Whenever we have plain rice left over from the night before, I like to heat it up in a cast-iron pan on the stove, throw in a little onion flakes, soy sauce, butter, and hot sauce, and viola!

    Monday, January 3, 2011

    11 in 2011: Favorite Work-Out Tips

    I just recently tried to make exercise a regular part of my life. I tried a few times throughout my time in college to go to the gym, but I really started to "get into it" in August with the Couch to 5k program. I didn't actually COMPLETE the Couch to 5k program due to illness, school, and other unforseen circumstances, but I really did enjoy doing what I DID do of the program!

    At the beginning of December, my family joined SNAP Fitness and I LOVE my gym membership! I love the flexibility of a membership at Snap and how I can go where I want, when I want!

    Without further ado, here are my favorite work out tips:

    * Keep it hydrated!!!!- I have found that keeping myself hydrated is the key to a good workout. If I dont have the proper amount of hydration, I find it really hard to get through the workout and keep myself motivated.

    * Keep it fun (fun playlists all the way!)- I am always searching for fun songs and playlists to work out to. If I have the right music, I will definitely last longer!

    * Keep it social- since my whole family joined Snap, we like to get together to work out. Whether it is the accountability or a little bit of a sense of competition, keeping it social really helps!

    * Have a goal!- One of the reasons I really enjoyed the Couch to 5k program was because it had an attainable end goal. I do plan to re-start the Couch to 5k program on the treadmill at the gym to prep for warmer weather and being able to run outside again!

    Sunday, January 2, 2011

    11 in 2011: Favorite Holiday Memory

    Favorite Holiday Memory

    (please forgive my bangs in this picture!)

    This topic is sort of hard to write about just because I just LOVE the holidays. I love shopping for other people, I love baking, I love the smells, I love being with family, and I love all of our family traditions.

    So, I guess my favorite holiday memory would have to be any of the many memories of Christmas pasts. Every Christmas morning, my family wakes up (fairly early) to exchange presents and have a big home-made breakfast made by my Dad. This Christmas was no exception, my sister and I decided to spend the night on Christmas Eve despite the fact that neither of us live "at home" any more. This year also had the added addition of two furry friends, my beloved Mere Bear and my parent's dog Penny. Meredith and Penny get along wonderfully :)

    Every Christmas my Dad makes a couple of batches of home made egg nog, we always eat Christmas dinner at my Grandma's, and we always ask what ever happens to those pictures we take every year?

    I think this year was a little more special just because Cassandra and I dont live with my parents and we made the effort to keep our Christmas traditions in tact. I also loved having my Mere Bear to spoil a little this Christmas season!

    Saturday, January 1, 2011

    So I found a fun "blog carnival" type of thing to do...

    It's called '11 in 2011' and so I am going to go ahead and catch up!

    Day 1: New Year's Resolutions

    SInce I already did a similar post to this, I will make this brief. I dont really DO New Year's Resolutions, but I do like to start out the year with goals, hopes, aspirations, and the like.

    For 2011, I hope that:
    * my internship is successful and I complete my Master's In Teaching Successfully
    * I find a full time job for the 2011- 2012 school year
    * I find time to read more for pleasure
    * I develop my photography skills more
    * I spend some more time with my dog and get healthier

    What are your resolutions?

    It's not too late to link up!

    What a way to start the new year!

    Happy 2011!

    I am excited to start what is sure to be a fantastic year; however, it isnt going to start out so fantastic. Last night I had to babysit so there were no fun bringing in the new year festivities for me and Monday I am having surgery! Monday I am having my tonsils taken out and I have heard a LOT of horror stories about adults having a hard time recovering from this. I am pretty nervous because the TYPICAL recovery period is 7-10 days with some people reporting trouble eating/talking/etc for several weeks. I have done a ton of research though and I think I have found some good tips on how to help along the recovery process. I went to the store yesterday and got completely prepared for post-op with children's tylenol (liquid), pudding, applesauce, apple juice, gatorade, popsicles, chicken broth, beef broth, jello, ramen noodles, and gum. Apparently I am going to have to wake up every hour to hydrate my throat and keep a humidifier on while I am sleeping so the area doesnt dry out. I have heard the key to this thing is to shoot for about 100 oz of water a day and just keep the wounds moist so the scabs are thin.

    But on the bright side, 2011 will bring:
    * a new internship with a wonderful mentor teacher.
    * the completion of my masters
    * a new (big girl) job (hopefully)
    ... and endless possibilities.

    I have a few hopes for the new year, not necessarily new resolutions, but things I hope to accomplish
    * get healthier (more fit)- hoping to get on the road to losing at least 40 lbs
    * read more (for pleasure)
    * develop my photography skills more
    and there are some other, more personal things I will be working on as well.

    Hope the new year brings you great joy and happiness!