5th grade graduation

Eve had her elementary school graduation today and now it’s official — we have two middle schoolers in the house!

Shaking hands with the principal.

Shaking hands with her classroom teacher.

Looking at Facebook just now and seeing all the pictures parents took of their kids, and their kids friends, and all the flowers and smiles, I’m feeling a little lame about our graduation efforts.  However, Eve isn’t making it easy. She has been surly and grumpy and pulling away from people for awhile now, and it just occurred to me while I watched her at graduation, that I think she has a lot more feelings about leaving DBS then she’s letting on.  I think maybe it’s a little bit of denial at work.  Also, she hasn’t been feeling well all week.  She has been super tired, she’s dealing with poison ivy on her feet and a sunburn on her face, and she has the sniffles.  I think she’s ready for a break.  Maybe I’ll get a smiling picture when she starts middle school. For now, I got this.

Go away, mom!

I hope Eve finds herself again this summer so she can start middle school with a more positive attitude.

I got a little teary-eyed during the ceremony today.  I’m going to miss this class.  They aren’t perfect, but they sure are awesome!  I’ve known so many of them since kindergarten (even some from preschool!).  We have been around for birthday parties and playdates and sleepovers.  They are a small, tight-knit group, and I think it’s going to be hard for them to be so separated next year.  It’s going to be hard for me too… but this post isn’t about me.  It was wonderful that for so many of them I was able to say “see ya later” instead of “good-bye” because I know I’ll see them around.

A little celebratory dancing.

For now, while others are having parties, we are celebrating with books and blogs and Minecraft.  Lame, maybe, but it works for us.  :)

Middle School “Meet the Teachers” Night

Middle School “Meet the Teachers” night was tonight.  This year they sent letters ahead of time to parents telling them what teams the child has been assigned to, so when we got to the school tonight it wasn’t the big reveal that there was two years ago when Lex started.  I like this way better.  Eve found out two days ago that she’ll be on team Nova and that her buddies will not.  She’s had some time to process and was able to enjoy the introductions tonight.  All the kids got Nova t-shirts and time to hang out with each other and ask questions.  She has several friends with her, just not her besties.

Parent paparazzi!  I missed the “smile” picture, but got there for the “goofy face” picture. :)

HMMS Musical

Lex just wrapped up another season with the middle school musical.  This year was The Music Man and I got exactly zero pictures. (except this one that I just took right now)

He was part of the stage crew and got to move walls and furniture.  Last year there were a lot of crew and he didn’t get to do much, but this year they had a stricter process that required applications and teacher references, so there were fewer people, which resulted in lots more to do.  He was happy.  :)

The show was great.  I helped with ticket sales.  Eve saw it with her class and again with the family.  I love seeing all those kids up there signing and dancing.

Next year I might have both kids involved with the musical!  Crazy!

 

Teacher Appreciation Week

Teacher appreciation week is a funny thing when you’re a teacher, a parent, and VP on the PTO.  There are lots of hats to wear and lines to consider.

Each year the PTO organizes a week of lunches and treats for the teachers.  As VP I did a lot of the logistics and organizing for this.  I mentally refused to bake or supply food though.  :)  I did set up a “thank you note” station in the library and had all of the classes write thank you notes for teachers and staff.  Fortunately another parent was kind enough to bundle them together and I arranged for the Standing O winners deliver them to teachers.   I was a little stressed going into the week, but parents stepped up nicely and there was a great spread for lunch each day.    I was thrilled to walk into school on Thursday morning and find this:

Chalk love

It was thoughtful and sweet and (most importantly) not organized by me!  I still have no idea who did it.  There were hearts and flowers drawn all over the walkway.  It definitely made me smile.

Friday I allowed myself to relax and consider it a week well done.

Tea and cookies.

I love seeing my messy craft table where the kids have been working for two weeks turned into sweet little bundles and delivered by smiling children.

Some of the love.

Next year I will be just a teacher, no longer a DBS parent (*sniff*) and no longer on the PTO.  I bet the week will look and feel a little different for me.

Bio Fair and Birthdays

Eve had her Bio Fair today.  Each year the fifth graders each choose a person to study.  The project goes almost all year and included writing, research, and art.  Bio Fair is the culmination of this project.  The kids have to dress as their person and “be” their person for the duration of the fair.  Parents and families come, as do all the other students in the building.  This has been going on for many years and all the students look forward to it.

Eve chose to be Emma Watson for her Bio Fair project.  Because Emma Watson is alive today, her “costume” was just regular clothes, but she looked oh so grown-up!

Emma Watson has a big fan club! They had lots of questions for her.

 

I tried to take a selfie with her and I just looked so tired next to her!  I tried three times, then gave up.  My friend took this one.  It’s the best we could do.  :)

Me and Emma :)

This afternoon she decided to come shopping with me while Lex was in karate.  She has been saying all along that the doesn’t want to bring in a birthday treat to school, but in the grocery store today she changed her mind and decided to make “bunny butts” for her treat.  Thanks YouTube!

Really they are Oreos and frosting.

Mini marshmallow tails and feet, pink frosting toes.

We ran out of frosting so she decided to melt chocolate and make some of the bunnies brown. Things got a little messy!

This might be considered a “Pinterest fail” but I’m going to call it a success because she did most of it on her own and she’s thrilled! :)

I did some Googling and it seems “bunny butts” are all the rage this Easter.  There are a wide variety of ways to make them, using cookies, cupcakes, cakes, etc.  Who knew!?

 

Mini golf

Our Mini Golf event was a stellar success today! We had 240 people come play 18 holes of “home made” mini golf in the library and around the school. Each class made a hole, with a book for the theme. I cleared out the library (mostly) on Thursday and Friday, with the help of some eager students. Then the teachers and students set up their holes Friday afternoon. I was there with other PTO members until late Friday night getting the PTO hole set up and all the finishing touches. It was awesome, but all made of cardboard and paper and donated stuff, so I was leary of how long it last. Four hours and 240 people later it was still in decent conditions, with all 18 holes still functioning. We heard a ton of great feed back. Several teachers came with their families. Lots of DBS families came, of course, but also some people from the greater community who had seen it advertised on Facebook or in the newspaper. (Oh, we should have had a reporter come! Note to self for next year.) I had set up a bunch of volunteer spots, but we had very few people sign up to help, so I was nervous about that too. However, it went off well without a hitch! I was also nervous about golf clubs flying and balls everywhere, but families did a great job keeping track of their kids and (as far as I know) there were no injuries. PTO stayed to clean up, with the help of a few amazing parents and a bunch of AWESOME kids, and we got all cleaned up and out the door by 3pm. Well, mostly cleaned up. The janitor agreed to vacuum the library on Monday morning, so I’ll have my first class move all the tables and chairs back into place. :) Right now the floor is covered in dirt, glitter, leprechaun sparkles, confetti, and more!

Random people on the Mo Willems hole (Elephant & Piggie, Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus, etc.)

Alan playing on the 15 par Charlie and the Chocolate Factory hole. This is the one that Eve helped design.

The PTO hole, based on The Pout Pout Fish (For you safety minded folks, this was actually taken Friday night.  There was no extension cord there when people were playing today.)

It’s Me! And my friend Jaime who is also the PTO president. (I’d totally love to take the credit for this, but actually it was my predecessor, now 3rd grade classroom teacher who made it. Everyone had fun taking pictures!)

Eve was with me for the whole time, helping to set up, run the event, and clean up at the end. Alan and Lex came to play golf midway through the morning, after their usual karate/breakfast routine. When we finally got home we all crashed in front of our screens for awhile. At family meeting we decided it was a great night for take out and a movie. :)

Tomorrow’s agenda: sleep late, read the paper, do my homework, lesson plan for the short week ahead.

Concerts, karate, and mini golf (oh my!)

We are once again in a busy upswing around here. Lex had is “Concert Grande” yesterday. It was only postponed due to snow once, unlike the 6th grade concert that was postponed so many times they ended up just not doing it. We’ve had a lot of snow lately! Concert Grande is 7th-12th all together. It was fun. Lex once again dressed nicely and I, like a dope, took a few pictures in SnapChat but not the camera app and, like even more of a dope, didn’t save them to post here. Oh well. Imagine Lex at the holiday concert, only slightly taller. :)

Today he had a belt test and got his solid purple belt! He’s a powerhouse!

 

 

 

Lex is doing stage crew for the middle school play too and that will pick up in April.

Eve has several roles in the DBS play and rehearsals are in full swing. She is busy rehearsing during recess and many days after school. The play is April 12th! I’m looking forward to it!

I am elbow deep in an PTO mini golf fundraising event we are orchestrating. Each class has built a mini golf hole with a book theme. Tomorrow they will all be setting them up (in the library, which I have been prepping and clearing all week!) and Saturday families will come play 18 holes of mini golf! I’m sure it will be a blast, but right now it’s a ton of work! Being a teacher and VP of the PTO puts me right smack in the middle of all of it. Also, ’cause it’s in my space. I had eager 4th graders today clear out all the tables and chairs from the library, so now it’s a huge open space. They wanted to move bookshelves too, but I had to put a stop to that! Right now it’s 9pm and I’m brain dead from PTO work, so I thought a blog post was in order. :) If you’re local, come by and check it out. It will be awesome! The kids are SOOO excited! If you’re not local, check out pictures on Facebook. :) We might even LiveStream for awhile.

A “day off”

Today is Martin Luther Jr. Day and a day off from school.  I have come to the conclusion that all weekends should be three-day weekends.  Saturday to get caught up and run errands, Sunday to relax and enjoy, and Monday to prepare for the upcoming week.  Especially those of us in careers that take a lot of “at home” work before we are actually ready to go to work!

This weekend I have written my lesson plans for the next three weeks, figured out how to use Do Ink (green screen software), set up Google Classrooms for six classes, prepped for tomorrow’s in-service day, came up with plans to teach Dash and Dot to my second graders, Lego WeDos to the third graders, and author studies for kindergarten and first grades.  I did a big grocery shopping, organized the pantry, helped both kids clean their rooms, and managed to eat healthy and stay “on plan” with Weight Watchers.  I EVEN managed to go to a yoga class and have brunch with a friend! I’m on fire!  I don’t even remember what I did on Saturday!  That was all just yesterday and today!

Seriously, all weekends should be three days.  Two days just isn’t long enough in the education world.  :)  Although…. maybe we need a rotating schedule because the kids don’t need three day weekends!

Growing up, and the holiday concert that was

Lex had his winter concert tonight. Their concert dress code is black bottoms, white tops, dressy. Last year he wore black sweats and one of Alan’s white Hanes t-shirts, and I thought things were fine. Last night when I was putting him to bed he said to me, “Mom, I think I should get some nicer clothes for the concert tomorrow.” Turns out he felt awkward in his sweats last year and although no one commented, he said he got a few funny looks. Imagine my surprise when he suggested a Polo shirt! After school today he came to DBS to help me set up some robotics kits, then we tried to work out shopping, karate, Girl Scouts, and the concert. I kept waiting for him to bail on the shopping, but nope, he suggested skipping karate so we could go shopping!! We ended up dropping Eve at home (to walk Arlo) and then Lex and I headed to JC Penney. I wish we had better clothing stores around. Penney’s and Khols both have very small kids sections. Plenty of adult clothes and baby/toddler clothes, but my kids are now at that age where they can’t quite wear grownup clothes, but have outgrown the kids section. It’s tricky. He tried on almost a dozen different pants and four shirts before settling on a pair of black jeans and a white collar shirt. He was happy for the entire time! He was a little worried that the jeans were a bit big around the waist, so I suggested a belt. Guess what?! He said OK! Ack! Who is this child?!

We inhaled some pizza, got Eve out the door to Girl Scouts (cookie time is right around the corner!), then rushed off to the concert. Lex was a few minutes later, but we agreed that at least he’d look slick walking in. :) He was happy and the concert was awesome!

On the Eve front, she was going to bed last night, climbing up her bunk bed ladder. She stopped, looked seriously at me, and said, “Mom, puberty is doing weird things to my body.” She then raised her foot up behind her and I looked, expecting to see bumps and blisters, but instead I saw a big googly eye! Stuck to the bottom of her toe! I cracked up! She started giggling and crawled into her bed. Not too grown up yet! <3

The holiday concert that wasn’t

Eve had her last holiday concert last night.  We didn’t make it.  She’s had a cold and sniffles for a few days now.  She woke up in the morning saying her neck hurt.  I had a long meeting after school and by the time I got back to her she was cuddled up in the chair, covered in my jacket.  She told me she was too tired and cold and stuffed up.  I rushed her down to the nurse real quick (who was also in the long meeting with me) for a fever check.  It was low-grade but “within the range of normal for an evening temperature.”  The nurse also checked her throat because apparently strep is going around her classroom!  The throat was red, but not too red.

That left me with the eternal parent/teacher dilemma.  I was signed up to run the raffle table and Lex was going to come help me.  What to do, what to do.  I talked to the music teacher who assured me they could find someone else to run the table – though I know that’s the last thing she wanted to be thinking about an hour before the concert starts!  I negotiated with Eve for a bit, but she wanted nothing to do with anything.  I even told her it was lights out at 7:30 if she didn’t go to the concert.  She said ok.  And was in bed at 7:30.  I read her a few Christmas stories so lights weren’t quite out, but close.  :)  She was asleep fast and slept late this morning.  I felt bad about bailing on my teacher commitments, but damn, we are tired around here!

When I broke the news to Lex he was completely indifferent, but then he told me how excited he was for his own concert on Monday and I said, “what?”  Concert Monday?  Crap.  Not on my calendar!  So Monday will be karate -> Girl Scouts -> concert… while hoping someone can pick Eve up from Girl Scouts for me!

Anyway, I did go to the dress rehearsal and took a few videos of Eve’s band performance.  I didn’t stick around for the chorus part, thinking I’d be back again in the evening for the actual show.  Silly me.  This family isn’t very good at the concert thing.