Last summer I found the best way to get my girls out of bed was to head straight to the pool. Summer Day 1 and we're already at it. I went out for a run this morning and when I got back they were waiting on the stairs in their suits. With an air temp of only 75 degrees the only part of me to touch the water is my toes, but my girls seem to have no such reservations.

5th Grade Graduation


I wasn't really anticipating an emotional reaction to Tessa leaving elementary school, but her graduation this morning was sweet and funny and touching. We absolutely love our girls' elementary school. There is a great diversity and real kindness among the students and an amazing faculty and staff.

Tessa's teacher had a secret handshake with each of the kids as they walked across the stage which resulted in much cheering.

The principal of our school is amazing. Even with a student body just under 1,000 students - she knows each and every one by name. She serves as the crossing guard after school every day and you can see the care she takes to know her kids. The APs are kind and warm as well. Great staff.

I bought these roses for Tessa because this is my favorite color for her. Ever since she was born I have thought of her in terms of this peace color with it's yellow and orange and pink. It happens to be her favorite color of the moment. Kismet.

Another one of Tessa's dear friends that is moving this summer. We will miss her.

Tessa is incredibly camera adverse these days and it took more than a little cajoling to get her to consent to take a picture with me. No such luck for Dave.

I had to ambush her in her classroom later and ask her teacher for a picture to get Tessa to pose for one more. She has loved her teacher this year. He is the perfect blend of cool and funny that seems to be perfectly suited for 5th grade. Every year Tessa says her current teacher is her favorite ever and this was no exception.


Sylvie told me this morning at breakfast that she had a "big final test" today. I was a little curious what they could be possibly be doing on the last day of class and here is the result. This sums up her fabulous teacher in a nut shell.

Goodbye 2nd Grade

Do I think it's strictly necessary to have a "graduation" ceremony for all 13 years of primary education? Perhaps not. But do I think it's adorable to see second graders toss their mortarboards in the air? Definitely.
Sylvie had the same teacher that Tessa was blessed with in 2nd Grade and he is beyond stellar. She has had an amazing year and her personal growth has been remarkable. She's lost some of her shyness and is just way more comfortable in her own skin. Her teacher is full of aspirational quotes, but he is most known for "if you can believe it, you can achieve it". And those second graders leave totally feeling it. Great year.


A few snippets from the weekend and pictures from my phone that never got blogged.

First of all my yard is spectacularly beautiful this year. This picture does the color no justice. I love all things green and the leafy and the colorful. Until fall when these beds are a mangled mess of oak leaves.

A piano recital for my girls. Our teacher is holding two recitals this spring and Sylvie wants to do both so that she can get double treats. This is a big improvement over the last recital where she got stage fright and refused to perform at all. Sylvie is a wonderful pianist and I love to watch her love it. Tessa is still a fine piano player despite her best efforts to hate the whole endeavor.

A Memorial Day breakfast at the church. The kids all ride their bikes and scooters around the parking lot for a parade and we have lots of pancakey goodness.

Tessa with her two great friends that happen to both be moving this summer. Poor Tessa has a total of three wonderful friends moving this summer plus more than half of her 5th grade class is going to a different middle school. Rough stuff for my girl.

All that plus a pool trip Saturday, and a pool/BBQ party with friends on Monday. A busy but fun weekend for sure.

Some numbers


  • 5 days of school left for my girls
  • 5 working days left for me at GCC (I could stop the list right here with these first two items and have myself a little freak out.)
  • 13 pounds I've lost since February
  • 5 more pounds to go although I'm in a bit of a plateau and I'm okay with that
  • 31ish days until my mom and sissy arrive in Austin for keeps
  • 4 high schools that I've applied to for a teaching position
  • 0 interviews I've gotten. There is no number to rate my stress level about this. To be fair, there haven't been many interviews period for anyone, but I'd still like some movement on this front.
  • 2,766 pins to my boards on pinterest since I've joined
  • 198.1 miles I've run this year. Well, that's my total distance in running shoes anyway - I won't say how much of it I've walked :-)
  • 73 hours I spent on the yearbook this school year. Think of how much Mad Men I could have watched!
  • 39 ounces of dark chocolate I've eaten in 2012
  • Infinity - all the rest...

The Black Prince

The Black PrinceThe Black Prince by Iris Murdoch
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved this book. It had a little bit of everything - a crazy action filled plot, lots of achingly beautiful language, scandal, minor philosophizing, and of course love.

What I learned:
There was a lot to think about in this book about truth, perspective, age and death, gender, love, art. I loves me some deep thinking narratives. Mostly the book just made me wonder and that is the best kind of book in my opinion.

What I loved:
The language was beautiful and the plot was killer. I haven't read any of Murdoch before but I certainly will be again after this fine novel. None of the characters were completely lovable but they were all real and relate-able in their own way.

Favorite passages:
"Of course the mind of the lover abhors accident. 'I wonder by my troth what thou and I did till we loved' is a question intimate to his amazement. My love for Julian must have been figured before the world began. Sure it was lovers who discovered astrology. Nothing less than the great chamber of the stars coud be large and steady enough to be context, origin, and guarantee of something so eternal... When God said 'Let there be light' this love was made. It had no history.
"In waiting time devours itself. Great hollows open up inside each minute, each second. Each moment is one at which the longed-for thing *could* happen. Yet at the same instant the terrified mind has flown ahead through centuries of unlightened despair.

View all my reviews



This has been such a spectacularly lovely spring that I feel it necessary to tell Texas thank you. I have soaked up every last minute possible. It has been green, mild, colorful, a little rainy, and most importantly long. Here it is the end of May and my gorgeous run this morning at the Slaughter Creek Trail was in the high 60s. Bliss.



I volunteered to chair the yearbook committee this year at my girls' school. We finally wrapped things up this week and I am relieved to say the very least. We went out for dinner and a recap meeting friday night and we were all giddy that we had pulled it off. We were a brand new committee of four and the learning curve was steep and the hours heavy. I enjoyed lots of the process but if I had known what this year had in store for me I wouldn't have taken it on. Stress. But the book turned out beautiful and they sold out fast. Lots of people said it was the best one they'd seen in years. I would consider doing it again, especially since I finally feel like I know what I'm doing, but being a first year teacher is enough crazy for anyone so I'll be stepping down.



This girl makes me smile with my whole heart. She bought these shades last weekend at the mall and she is completely in love with them. Add to that her adorable smile missing three front teeth and she is just too much cute to handle.



Tessa's bff hosted a mother's day spa this evening in her home. The girls had different "relaxation" stations for us moms with massages, hot rocks, tea, cookies and more. Such sweethearts.


These three beautiful women I am lucky to number among my dearest friends. Last night we went out for a little dinner and a lot of chat. You'd think 2012 was trying to kill at least one of us from all the crazy we all seem to be dealing with. So sticking together is paramount. Love these women!



I finished my student teaching today. It has been a mixed experience for sure. Lots of reality - some good and some bad. It's just incredibly hard to come into a classroom this time of year in the midst of testing and burned out students. Students who have marginal motivation to begin with. But I survived in one piece and I am grateful for the knowledge gained. I am also extremely grateful for the weekend.



I came home today to find this sleeping beauty in my bed, zonked out with book still in hand. And then I promptly joined her. Rough day.



The sun is out now, but when I woke up at 5:30 it was raining hard. So I decided to go back to bed rather than head out into the dark. And the funny thing was I was sad instead of happy about the switch up. What in the world is wrong with me?



Let's all make a group prayer effort that I can find a job close to home. Because if I have to deal with I-35 or commuting in general on a long term scale I may end up murdering someone.



It is rather telling that it's already Friday and this is the first time I've been able to pause enough to think to snap a picture and update my little blog. A crazy week, a tiring week, a stressful week, and kind of a fun week. Student teaching has been both easier and more difficult than I anticipated. Being in front of a class is easier and more natural than I had feared. Dealing with the realities of student motivation and behavior at a "rough" high school has been eye opening. The students have been for the most part friendly, but classroom behavior is, well, shocking. An education for sure.