Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Request

Dear precipitation,

Be you rain or snow, sleet or a thick morning fog, you are ruining my life. Okay, this may be an exaggeration, but you are certainly making things difficult. You seep into the ground, making it squishy and thick and mucky. You turn my backyard into a giant mud pit. You may think this is a fact of life, or that it's no big deal - mud happens.

But it is a big deal.

You see, when you fall from the sky and land in my little backyard, and make my little backyard one huge mud puddle, it affects me. My doggies like to play in the backyard. They like to run, and dig (unfortunately), and bark, and play, and roll around, and chase balls. It's actually really convenient for me, because I don't like to take them on long walks when it's 30 degrees out or 10:30 at night. Playing in the backyard gives them the exercise they want, and need, while I get to stay warm and safe inside my home.

But when my doggies play in a yard made of mud, it turns them into mud monsters.

so sorry for the poor quality - blame my cell phone!

I don't know if you can tell in the above picture, but both of my babies are covered in your nastiness. In fact, after this particular photograph was taken, all three of us had to take baths! And then my bathtub had to take a bath, because it too was covered in mud.

Precipitation, when you fall, you make my pups dirty and that makes me, and my house, and my floor, and my bathtub dirty. I have to mop pawprints off the floor. I have to give two dogs who hate baths, baths. I have to wash muddy pawprints from the deck door, where my doggies have stood up against the glass when they see me coming to let them inside. I have to do a load of laundry, because it takes that many towels to clean them off (and let's not forget my clothes that are thus covered in mud from carrying the dogs from the sunroom -aka the mudroom - to the bathroom. At least my carpets stay clean). And then I have to do it all over again, because Mr. Sun can't seem to dry you up within one day.

So please, if you're going to come visit my little town, please skip the Fischers.

Thank you!
Courtney

Monday, January 24, 2011

Back in the Saddle

Confession: I've been a little worried lately that, maybe, I wasn't supposed to be a teacher?

I know all 7 of you readers are going "What?! Aren't you getting your Masters in Education right now? As in, learning to be an educator?"

And yes, you'd be correct. But I was a psych undergrad, I've never actually taught before or even taken education courses before this past fall, and I was a little freaked out. I was feeling overwhelmed because I have a practicum this semester (complete with activity planning that I actually will have to implement) and I have to student teach over the summer. I don't know anything about teaching! Am I doing what I am supposed to be? Was there a sign somewhere that I missed? Why don't I feel more sure about this? Why can't I be one of those people that knew in the 6th grade what they wanted to be when they grew up? (cough cough, BILL).

But then, my practicum started today. Every Monday, I am spending several hours in a local preschool class of 17 children, ages 3, 4, and 5. It was loud. It was chaotic. It was messy. It was amazing.

Ignoring the minor crisis where the class gerbil basically had a seizure, was rushed to the vet, and subsequently died, the day was great! I hadn't been in a classroom in about a year and a half, and I forgot how much I loved it. I let myself get consumed with thoughts of lesson planning, paperwork, IEPs, and responsibilities, and I forgot the joy I get out of being in a classroom! Kids are awesome. Today I played Squiggly Worms (I know yall remember this!), learned some sweet ballerina moves, built towers and houses, played "Hide the Baby Doll," sang songs, used a loop-and-loom, discussed our mutual love for Hannah Montana with some girls, and got more hugs and lovin' than I knew what to do with. One girl even gifted me with the "friendship picture" she made in group art time. These kids are so great! There's a sand table in the room, and one little girl and I would hide these plastic starfish in it, then dig them out with small paintbrushes and trowels. Yall, this four-year-old girl looked at me and said "We're being paleontologists!" What preschooler knows that word? She is precious. And so smart, obviously.

So yes. I got thrown back in the saddle this morning, and I am so glad. My doubts have vanished. I may not know all the logistics and technicalities of teaching, but I love working with kids and I know that will be enough in the long run (that, and all the information I'll learn as long as I pay attention in my classes!)

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Psalm 19

Man, did anyone else notice how beautiful yesterday was? It was amazing. I wish I had taken a picture, but the only photo I actually took yesterday was of the boot on my friend's car!

Anyways, in the midst of the coldest winter NC has seen in decades, between ice storms and snow showers, we had this great day with a bright blue sky, puffy white clouds, lots of sunshine and barely a breeze. Oh, and did I mention it was 56 degrees outside?! I was lucky enough that this happened on a Wednesday, when I don't have a class in the afternoon or evening, so I took Sensei and Preston on a long, leisurely, wonderful walk around the neighborhood. I didn't even wear a coat! It was just amazing. Days like that just really remind me how lucky I am, that there is so much beauty around us, and I need to stop taking it all for granted! It was really nice to have a long period of time, being outside with just my doggies, my thoughts and nature (and of course, the random neighbor I had to say hello to!). It also made me want to challenge myself, and all your readers, to keep this in mind the next time a gorgeous day like yesterday makes you appreciate life. (And even on ugly, gloomy, foggy, rainy, cold days - because God doesn't just work on pretty days.)


The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display His craftmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make Him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world. -- Psalm 19:1-4

Monday, January 17, 2011

Date Night

Isn't it nice, sometimes, to just have a date night? When it's been a while since you had some quality hang-out time together, and you just want to do what you want and be yourself and laugh and have a great time?

I love date nights. And I had a fantastic one last night (yes, a Sunday night... thank you, holidays that fall on Mondays!) I'm not talking about one with Bill, though. I'm talking about my best friend Michelle. We had a little throwback night last night, where we...

... ate at Wendy's. It's right next to our high school, and was a staple of our time together those four years. Many important conversations happened in that grungy little restaurant, and I don't even want to think about the number of Frosties consumed.
... watched the final episode of Hannah Montana ever. Judge if you will, but that show is awesome. Many nights in Cobb 412 were spent lounging on the futon watching Disney Channel tgether.
... did our nails. As you will note here, I introduced and consequently forced Michelle to like brightly colored nail polish during our time as roomies. So it was only appropriate last night that we paint our nails hot pink as a tribute.

... and watched Easy A. We almost watched Lizzie McGuire (it was throwback night, remember?) but I'm glad we went with Easy A. And Miranda from Lizzie McGuire makes an appearance, so it counts. Right?
So basically this post is just a recap of how awesome it is to spend time with your best-friend-that's-not-your-spouse. Besides, if we're honest, we would all realize that Bill probably would have only done the first of those four things with me. Michelle - you rock, don't ever change :)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

I'm back, with a vengeance.

Hopefully.

Yes, faithful blogees, it has been an entire month since I last posted. And a lot has happened in those 31 days. Christmas came and went, a new year began, and I started back at school. But rather than try to explain everything I did since Dec. 13, I think I will just show you...

I spent some time with my husband. As you can tell from this photo, we obviously adore one another and cherish our time together.
And this same night, I got to see some great friends from Chapel Hill! I hadn't seen most of these friends since the wedding, so it was wonderful to reconnect and celebrate the engagement of Jon and Mer! (And a little shout-out to Emilee and Travis who had just gotten engaged, too... yay!! I love love.)
Bill gave me this beauty for Christmas. Does he know me or what? I spent a lot of time over the past month baking and making other food. Bill's parents' gave me the ice cream attachment, too, which I cannot wait to put to use!
And I finished the guest room! Here's the almost-completed shot. The walls are a soft gray-purple, it was hard to capture on film - err, my memory card? Anyways, the bed is mine from my parents' house (it was actually my grandparents' bed when they got married in 1946!) The bedding is something we got as a wedding gift, and it really brings out the gray in the wall color. Since this photo was taken, a lamp and some decorative items have been added. I'd also like to give a little shout-out and thank you to A and L for coming to visit... Not only was it so much fun, but it was great motivation to get the guest room guest-ready!
I read over the past month. I read a lot. And then I read some more. I decided to use this clip art picture of all these books, rather than show you the covers of each book I read. Because, well, I don't actually remember all of the books I read. That's how many I read... Isn't that awesome?
Bill and I finished up Firefly and were able to watch the film Serenity. I cried. Why does Joss Whedon do this to me?
Once we finished Firefly, we moved on to Castle: Season Two on DVD. I watch the show (which is in Season Three), and Bill does now, but he had only seen Season One on dvd. So I got Season Two on a great sale on Amazon and it's basically all we do now. Only 2 more episodes to go! Also, you may have noticed a trend for the past month - Nathan Fillion. Castle, Firefly, Serenity, and let's not forget a viewing or two of my favorite internet movie, Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog.
I spent a day traveling to Chapel Hill with my mom, where the two of us went to the UNC vs W&M game. It was my mom's first UNC game, and it was so great to be back in the Dean Dome to watch Roy's Boys win.
Trivia! This is a ritual of my high school friends. Whenever we are all in town (typically over Christmas, and some time during the summer), we reunite at Big Shotz for World Tavern Trivia. While "Chlamydia is Nothing to Clap About" (Yes, that's our team name) has yet to win, it is always a great time. I went a few times over Christmas break, so the past month was marked by trivia. I also, sadly, was not diligent about taking my camera places over the break, so no pictures of my fabulous friends.
And of course, I spent some time celebrating Christmas and Jesus' birthday with my family. This included the Wilson Family First Time Secret Santa Exchange. It. Was. Hilarious. Among some of the gifts that got passed around: a Snuggie, a ShakeWeight, an AirZooka (which Bill took home and has tortured me with for the past 3 weeks), and Squinkies.
I spent a lot of time with the hubby over the past month. He had a whole week-and-a-half off of work, so we probably spent more time together in the past month than we had in all of 2010 combined! Well, it felt that way, at least. It was awesome. It snowed on Christmas Day (A White Christmas on our first as a married couple - that's a good sign, right?) and we spent some time playing in the snow with the fur babies the next few days...

Our pretty house in the pretty snow. You can see Bill on the right hand side... this was right before we made our snow angels. (Horrible idea, by the way! It was so cold lying in that snow!)

And you know I spent some time not only playing with the doggies, but having photo shoots in the snow. Here's Preston and I on Christmas Day!
Sensei. This one's my computer background!
Preston!
Evidence of the time Bill and I spent playing with the dogs in the snow. Sensei loves to eat the stuff! Not only would he lick it off of the firepit - Bill's Christmas gift from me, by the way, but he would try to catch it as it fell from the sky. He also loves to try to catch snowballs, as you can see here. Such a goofball!
I also spent LOTS of time playing Just Dance with anyone and everyone who would play with me. Here's Melissa showing off her Rasputin skills.
Michelle, walking like an Egyptian. Don't kill me for posting this.
So there you have it. I danced, read, lazed around, watched DVDs, baked, cooked, celebrated, played and much more that I just don't have photographic documentation of. So this is the official first post of 2011, and hopefully not the last. Consider this my return to bloggerdom... see yall again soon!