Wednesday, October 30, 2013

WIAW: Getting my [Halloween] act together

So here's the update: my calf has been so sore that I've had trouble walking for 2 days! :( I did a little bit of working out but not much - I think it's a pulled muscle and will rest it/I'm a little lazy. I did manage jump squats though.

Onto some food:

I finally tried the Double Chocolate Chunk Quest Bar and it's one of my favorites!

Big Lots had no sugar Illy coffee, which I mixed with almond milk and stevia in an empty jar.

I never even thought of using buffalo wing sauce in my chicken. Spicy but perfect!

...and the Halloween snippet:

I finally got around to doing my nails for Halloween. I love the blood splatter!

My little cousin is all ready in her outfit for school tomorrow.

Here's my school appropriate costume:
I'll take dots and the ghosts on myself and hang Pac [wo]man on my neck.

Do you wear costumes to work? If so, what are you wearing?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Tuesday [big] thoughts: the dilemma

Outfits have been determined by spirit week, even though I opted out of going to the big game this Friday.

I found out today that I'll be sticking with my students through November. The bigger issue: will I be staying through December? I need the money and more importantly, I couldn't leave my students with someone else (besides their teacher).

The dilemma: I planned out a vacation to North Carolina in December a couple of weeks ago. I didn't have a chance to buy the ticket yet.

The teacher wants to return, but this is the third time she's had to extend her sick leave. She was supposed to return at the beginning of October then moved the deadline to November and now it's through November. Who knows what will come up? She doesn't.

The other dilemma: I haven't received a paycheck for September or October - it's a dire situation. I cannot wait to replenish my bank account. It's making the vacation outlook sad.

On the other hand, I haven't seen my friends in a year. These are just your typical friends, these are best friends, some of whom I haven't seen in years. I could always go later. Christmas is the best time to go though.

So I'm stuck waiting for more definite news. If this takes too long, ticket prices will be outrageous and I'll have to postpone.

But, even if I don't get to stay in this position, the district is in desperate need for subs. And I could always go later.

I'm also waiting for news on a house we may or may not be getting. If we get the house, vacation is out. Not only will I have to save money, I'm willing to postpone to move in!

Sounds like the decision was made without my knowing. Sadly, and I'll have to prevent myself from going crazy without companionship. Sure, I've got friends here but none like those.

So... I've busied myself preparing lesson plans. Work costs money. I also had to rent "Oliver Twist" again. Why isn't it on Netflix? :(

At night I sleep with books. :/

At least I was productive yesterday: no nap, worked out, and did my own homework. :(

Today (Tuesday) included shopping for tomorrow's birthday and bon voyage parties for my kiddos. I got bagels for the morning class and turkey & spinach lasagna for my afternoon class.

I'll be working on decorating tomorrow too.

I also picked up the prequel tone of my favorite movies!

My calves, particularly my right calf, which I worked on Sunday, is so painful I can hardly walk! :( That meant a rest day today.

When did you have to make a similarly difficult decision?
Do you take your work home? How much time do you work on work?

Monday, October 28, 2013

MIMM: Costume Party

Happy [almost] Halloween! We headed to a MARVELOUS costume party this Friday.

Our hosts MARVELOUSLY decked out the house. Me... haha.

The end of the night... don't fall asleep.

Of course, I slept in the next day. First thing on my mind? MARVELOUS National Pumpkin Day.

I busted out the crock pot for the first time and made Tone It Up's quinoa pumpkin pudding.

I napped and woke up to a finished dish.

We went on a family outing and got frozen yogurt on the way.

And for dinner? MARVELOUS Trader Joe's tomato soup with frozen veggies and chicken.

Plus 1/2 an Ezekiel tortilla with Laughing Cow to make it semi-grilled cheese & tomato soup.

I spent some time making this No Bake Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars made with a Greek yogurt cream cheese.

Another round of frozen yogurt... and now this habit must cease. #falldetox

We went to Costco and tried some of this cheese. It's MARVELOUSLY called Yancey's Fancy. Yancey was my roommate for 5 years.

Yesterday was Teddy Roosevelt's birthday:

How are you going to celebrate Halloween? Any good food or craft ideas?
What's your costume?

Friday, October 25, 2013

High Five Friday: Oktoberfest

HIGH FIVE to a clean banana bread recipe: oatmeal, peanut butter, and ripe bananas (without sugar!) from Baker Bettie.

HIGH FIVE to key lime Greek yogurt with chia seeds. I made one my student a parfait since he asked about chia seeds.

HIGH FIVE for BLAs. That's bacon, lettuce, and avocado with Laughing Cow.

HIGH FIVE to OKTOBERFEST with one my best friends Peter and his girlfriend Rachel!

HIGH FIVE for beer tasting!

HIGH FIVE to my all-time favorite girlfriend (of Peter's).

What's your favorite thing about October? I'm going to a Halloween party tomorrow and am recycling by wearing my old costume. It's store-bought, but I wish it was more creative and homemade.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

WIAW: Creating My Own Rules & Cronuts!

My morning started with pumpkin spice coffee (black) and CRONUTS! Sure I had to wait 15 minutes for them, but it was worth it. I had one flaky layer and shared the rest with the group of students who come to hang out before school. They're amazing - the students and the cronuts! Other places serve them but these were fresh to order at Kelly's Donuts & Burgers.

I went on a late night trek and found scored some deals. TJ Maxx was stocked!

I got a few bags of goodies on sale + clearance. I also stopped by the grocery store and picked up 2 bags of fancy cashews on clearance + coupon.

I found this article, "I Dare You to Start Doing What You Really Want in Life," and started Creating Your My Own Rules with these guiding questions:
  1. What makes me feel free and most alive?
    Teaching and talking to students, being out in nature, that one summer at the beach with all its calmness and lack of people
  2. How do I like to spend time with people I care about?
    I enjoy sitting with them, doing nothing. I prefer this over the stress of dressing up and going out.
  3. What sparks my passion and revs up my enthusiasm? How could I could spend hours (if not days) doing ____ and actually lose track of time?
    Great lesson plans, planning and blogging, watching TV, which isn't much of a hobby.
  4. How would I ideally like to spend my week, days, and weekends?
    Weekdays: Getting up, enjoying coffee and breakfast outdoors, taking a walk/working out, going to work, siesta, workout, rest.
    Weekends: exploring an old downtown, going to the farmer's market, hiking, having a nice brunch.
  5. What would my ideal work place be? Who would I work with (if anyone)?
    School. Honestly, I have it good in my temporary position, and I love love love working with my co-worker of 3 years - we were both aides and now work as teachers. I also love the other two girls, one teacher and one aide, who are my age.
  6. What ways do I actually enjoy moving my body? I love the idea of lifting, but I love dancing and yoga. I like seeing my body moving gracefully. I like hiking for the scenery though I dislike the swelling hands and I feel gross.
  7. What helps me feel relaxed and joyful?
    Crafts. I've been wanting to carve a pumpkin and make this nail polish holder. I also enjoy getting lost in books.
  8. How do I most enjoy helping others?
    I love seeing students grow into outstanding people.
Many of my students aren't "academics," but they are the most interesting, cool people. I'm always looking for ways to help them.

One of my students is just bored and I want him to make the most of high school. Sure, that means he won't be in 3 of my classes, but I'm forcing him to 1) have class with friends (my class is so ridiculously small) and 2) pick a better elective than aiding for me (there's nothing to do).

I'm "kicking out" another student who is also my aide in a small class. After some discussion with him and knowing him for 3 years, I sent some e-mails to get him as a student aide for a special education class. The experience will hopefully land him a job as an aide after he graduates while he also surfs.
  1. What am I willing to say no to in life, in order to say yes to what I do want? I don't know the answer to this one... I would say pay but this isn't true. I need money to survive. I'm not entirely willing to say no to my vacation (to Asheville in December) if the teacher I'm subbing for is still out. P.S. Good news! I'm subbing through November, but I'm worried that she may be out longer and I don't want to leave my kids with a stranger.
  2. What guilt am I willing to let go of in order to thrive? The only thing I can think that would leave me guilty: leaving my mother to live elsewhere. It's not a guilt I'm willing to let go of. 
Time for my afternoon workout. I'm skipping the nap??!

What's your ideal afternoon? What do you do when you get home from work? 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Like a European?

Wake up later. / Get enough sleep.
Yesterday, Siri set my alarm for 5:50. The alarm sound was too quiet to wake me from my involved dream. I was in bed till 7:45, got dressed, and was at work by 8. Thankfully I already had breakfast and lunch ready. The extra sleep felt great too.

Walk more. / Get more vitamin D.
At work, I opted to take my half of the class outside. I soaked in some vitamin D though dealt with all the passerbys and my students' ADHD.

At the end of the day, I let the students enjoy the last 5 minutes of school outside. After an hour and 40 minutes in 6th period on a Friday, they need it.

Take a siesta.
I've got this one down! After work, I take a nap. I only remember once this [school] year that I haven't. I'll then wake up and workout.

Enjoy meals. / Have conversations.
I typically eat in so part of enjoying my meal is cooking it. I'm being mindful of spending more time chewing and eating.

Also, though I was late, I had everything ready for classes today so I enjoyed breakfast while talking to 4 of my students. :)

Indulge in the best chocolate.
Every single day. Lindt and Milka lately.

I'm still working on...

Eating full meals. / Not snacking.
My meals are usually small so I need a snack. I bought all the fixins' for a charcuterie plate this week. Slowly but surely, I got enough items to create it, sans grapes.

Buy fresh foods.
While I enjoy produce and meat, I can't say it's farm-to-table.

Lauren of Sweat the Sweet Stuff mentioned "reverse engineering" your day. So for today, here goes:

7 AM - wake up
7:45 AM - get to work: check e-mail, pull up PPT
8-8:30 AM - breakfast: pumpkin protein pancakes
8:30-10:15 AM - 1st period Government: news, PPT California Constitution, packet work
10:15-12:12 PM - 3rd period prep: drink tea, read Wild
12:12-12:51 PM - lunch: Seasons 52 chili
12:51-2:30 PM - 5th period World History: presentations, PPT Industrial Revolution
2:30-4 PM - read Wild
4-6 PM - nap
6-7 PM - workout
7-7:30 PM - shower
7:30-8:30 PM - dinner: chicken with broccoli
11:30 PM - sleep

What are ways you live like a European?

Sunday, October 20, 2013

MIMM: Escape (and bake)

I still woke up early on Saturday and headed to MARVELOUS Old Towne Orange.

My friend told me about these MARVELOUS pita chips - this was the very last bag!

I stopped by Total Wine for an hour to peruse their selection of MARVELOUS beers for the BBQ.

We BBQ'ed (I didn't eat) then walked downtown to see MARVELOUS "Escape Plan." Andrew was the assistant to the director and his roommate Denton is in the movie!

We went to a MARVELOUS bar, Oldfield's Liquor Room, afterwards. Lots of walking, and I would've been okay with it if it wasn't so darn cold! We then went by our friend's apartment till 2 A.M.

I had a pretty good time - I met some fun people though I was super tired. :(

In the morning, I headed to MARVELOUS Larchmont for a walk.

I picked up a MARVELOUS new-to-me tonic from Erewhon market.

I came home & made MARVELOUS mini pumpkin pies (egg-free, dairy-free, gluten-free).

They turned out MARVELOUS and perfect!

I craved Seasons 52's MARVELOUS chili I had last Sunday and found the recipe online. I used a chocolate stout beer.

Finally, I made this MARVELOUS key lime pie (without the booze). I already ate 1/4 of it!

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast: oatmeal protein pancakes all week long
Lunch: chili (above) [4 meals]
Dinner: I have no idea yet!
Snacks: almond bread w/ cookie butter & cocoa spread, key lime pie (above)

This week seems rough already. I'm hopeful though!

Where do you escape to on weekends?
Did you bake anything? Any pumpkin or apple flavored foods?