Monthly Archives: March 2012

catch my breath

I am on spring break. According to our calendar at school, there are 8 weeks left of classes before summer break. I exclaimed last week that this was a shock to my system (it totally was), but it’s pretty incredible. In that time there is much to be taught and tested and performed. That’s kind of scary. For instance, cramming an orchestra and Native American Music unit into the 4 weeks after their concert for third grade…uh, at least they can read Do, Re, Mi, So, and rhythms through ti-tiri on the staff. Yikes.

I spent a weekend with my dad and K in the twin cities. It was pretty lowkey (which was just what I needed…unfortunately that meant passing out on K’s couch for most of Saturday), with the exception of working out on Sunday (hoowee, still recovering) and some furious knitting that yielded the second of the KAL socks and part of a new pair (Berry Patch “Fancy” socks…on Ravelry as Pair #7). I love that the Twin Cities have so much to do without going far. We didn’t end up walking by the river, but all the paths and trails…awesome. It would be awesome if Indianola would make a trail going west to Martensdale…the hills and pastures are really sweet. Unfortunately, I am the same person who isn’t a big fan of rounding up my city utilities bill to pay for bike trail maintenance…so I am speaking out both sides of my mouth. Evidently Martensdale has a path that goes to Des Moines that is pretty cool. Maybe I’ll get brave and try it…but I’ll have to wait until my legs recover from some crazy squat/lunge combos on Sunday (and until I’m back in I-town).

I used to count down the days to spring. Fall is my favorite season for a number of reasons (the colors of the leaves, the crisp air, and the smell of warm spiced things…Hawkeye football…school starting), but spring has it’s certain charms. I was very thankful to make it home from a run about 3 minutes before a big rainy blob came over Ames. That was good timing…but I can’t really take too much weather forecasting credit. When it came down to it, I decided to head for home instead of going on because I was tired and it had been about 30 minutes of “run” time (interspersed with walking). The flowering trees and warm temps we are beginning to enjoy a little early here in Iowa are certainly worth the mention, too.

Definitely enjoying a little down time as I anticipate some activity-full weeks to come.

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One ball I assuredly dropped

I was surprised to find out from a teacher that report card grades are due this week so kiddos can take home their grades before the break. What? I thought I had surely been left off the list, but no. Report card email was sent about 2 weeks ago. Nothing about the dates was in the email (a blank email), but the attachment had the information I was neglecting. Not to mention the school calendar telling me that the quarter was over. But I didn’t look at that either.

So while I was ignorant of the truth, I am still accountable to it. Report cards must be delivered in a timely manner. I almost finished my grades today (it was a day 5…and though I had planned to spend it on my portfolio, I was happy to spend the time in that way). Though I am anxious as all get out for Spring Break, I must share here that I am TICKLED beyond tickled that we are into the fourth quarter. That means something like 44 days of school remain. I’m probably going to have to go count (and perhaps make a decorative paper chain that mysteriously loses a link every day!) it down…which is to say give me perspective on what needs to happen in 8+ weeks. EEp!

3 Years ago yesterday was the day I headed out to Cornwall for Student Teaching. Miss those folks, miss the landscape and seascape. Miss the tea-time and the cute school uniforms and accents. But so thankful for the richness in the life I am living–God has provided a lot of community and more and more reveals areas to serve Him in within the Indy area. Woohoo to that!

Now to knit by the open window. I’d go for a walk, but I’m expecting a call in the next 20 minutes to an hour…love the warm temps. I think we’re out of the snow day range by now, which means May 21st, good bye for now and have a  good summer chilluns! 🙂

Peace!

it’s all in the timing

Today at recess I got a big hug from a boy who had had a rough time on the playground before having to line up. His sister came right up to me and said “he probably has to go home early.” immediately my mind jumped to the incident at recess (which wouldn’t send him home…but kids get confused about that sometimes). I asked, “why is that?”

She replied, “Because he probably has headlice.”

Needless to say the side hug was a little more separated after that point. Flashbacks to the lice epidemic of 2009 at camp rushed to the surface and I remembered the horror of being diagnosed (although errantly) with having lice after spending 14 hours straight in a laundry room taking care of camper’s laundry.

He stayed at school all day, so perhaps the “probably” was an exaggeration. That is my hope.

STEAK.

I bought a clearanced steak at HyVee the other night after a prayer meeting, with a big dose of hunter’s satisfaction (it was marked down to $3.00 a pound from $9.00 a pound)…but getting it home realized that I don’t really know what to do with a cut of meat like that. The one other occasion that I personally selected and purchased steak it was not on sale, and it was for a roasted soup, so I bought a not very expensive cut. But this was…a T-bone! (it might not be that exquisite, but I don’t remember ever eating them as a kid…so it’s better than a hot dog! 😉 ).

It sat in my fridge last night because I didn’t make time for cooking an elaborate dinner then, but tonight I decided to cook it and turn it into a steak salad with asparagus on the side (side note, this is my favorite time of year because daffodils, strawberries, and asparagus are bountiful and inexpensive). This is a very simple meal to make when my dad grills the steaks…I just tear up lettuce and cut up the toppings…he takes care of cooking the meat. I don’t have a grill and he’s not here…so I had to figure it out.

After looking at a couple recipes I decided to go with one that asked me to sear it on both sides before “roasting” it in a 375 degree oven. I was skeptical about the high heat (I reserve that setting of my stove top for boiling water, which tends to not burst into flames…), but I did it anyway. The roasting took a little longer than the recipe said, but the thermometer I got for Christmas confirmed it’s medium-rareness without having to cut into it prematurely. It was perfect. 

So, though it was a big apprehension in the kitchen, I worked through it and really enjoyed the success. The roasted/broiled asparagus was also amazing, but I can’t really take credit for that innovation, as I learned it firsthand from a friend.

Now for a little sock-knitting. peace!

Optimistic

I want to write something of substance here. But I need to write in vague terms for now…however mysterious, I confirm that I have been served some optimism in the past couple days, and it’s affect on my mood is widespread. In fact, today at school I bit off almost too much to chew for my cycle plans…and it was great, but it was a scurry and flurry of action from the moment I walked in the door to the moment I walked out. 

Tonight I took the shortest walk of all time (ok, maybe not, but I got suited up to go for a long one and stopped at the Fareway right next to my apartment complex) and returned home with a pail of ice cream, frozen fries, and asparagus among other things. I love asparagus so much, and this is the ultimate time to get it. My family has never been a grilled-veggie family, but grilled asparagus (plenty of olive oil, salt, pepper, and such) tops my grilled veggie eating experiences. I’ll settle for broiled tonight…but alas. Perhaps that’s enough about it (you should get some…).

What strikes me about March 1st is that though it is entirely possible (likely?) that winter’s fury is not over, it’s on the upward swing from here. No fluke warm weeks, it’s supposed to be getting warmer, brighter, nicer. Throw in some rain (but make sure it’s not on my walk to or from school), and call it spring. just shy of 75% of this school year is over. How can that be? I’m delighted for the summer to come, but this year sure has seemed to go faster than usual. Perhaps because I’ve been looking forward to so much with the church plant here? Not sure.

And about that–we’re actually starting a week earlier, so on April 1st. That’s tremendous news, as it means I will not be going to Westwind (except deliberately on visits, if I do that…?) again. I am outta town this weekend and the only other one that is “off” to come. I’m bummed to miss out on those two weeks because I am SO excited for their ministry growing and expanding with a constantly growing body of believers. Kind of like we are. Great is Thy Faithfulness, LORD!

Well, asparagus and french fries call. I have to hold off on the ice cream for now (sherbet needs to be finished first…unfortunately it’s a not-so-good raspberry flavor), but I’ll definitely have a good dessert.

And I’m knitting like there’s no need to wake up early tomorrow (but there totally is…heh). Peace!