Thursday, May 10, 2012

It's been two years...time to go back

I have officially been graduated from college for two years! The past two years have definitely flown by and so much has happened, but it has been everything I wanted it to be. I recently made the decision to go back to school. I applied to graduate school at the University of Central Florida. I found out last weekend that I GOT ACCEPTED! I am going back to school in the fall!!!

As scary as it is to work full time and go back for my master's, I am very excited about it! It will be a challenge, but it is one that I am looking forward to and one that will help me in my career. I will be getting my master's in Teacher Leadership English Education.

For those of you who do not know, I got my bachelors at East Carolina University. These schools were in the same conference until this upcoming year. They are kind of rivals, but who really cares?!?!

Here's to furthering my education and embarking on a new challenge!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Relay for Life Recap

It has been a little bit since I popped in and thought I should recap the Relay event.

Relay for Life of East Orange was extremely successful and a great time was had by all! We raised somewhere around $20,000 for cancer research and awareness. I most certainly would NOT have been able to pull it off without the help of my committee. 

The event kicked off at 6:00 p.m. with opening ceremonies. As the event chair I explained why we relay for 18 hours and of course as I read I almost cried. It is a very touching experience. The night went on and everything was fabulous. The only slip up was when some of the sprinklers went off (after it had already been arranged for them to shut off) on the football field. Luckily, our head football coach was in attendance and knew where to pull the plug. Some of the kids really seemed to enjoy it :)

At about 9:00 p.m. the luminaria ceremony started. This ceremony honors people who have had cancer, survived it, or succumbed to it. It is a very somber moment. It was even more touching because a local middle school student and his mother spoke about when he was diagnosed at the age of 4 with neuroblastoma. He read a letter that he wrote to cancer. It was very sad, but also extremely happy in that he has beaten the disease.

Our event went through the night and  wrap up at about 10:00 a.m. Throughout the night, things died down a little, but there were always people on the track :) It was an extremely wonderful event and I am honored that I could be a part of something like this!

Here are a few pictures from our event!

Monday, April 23, 2012

It's almost here!!!!

Back in January, I took on the role of event chair for Relay for Life of East Orange. It has been a ton of work, while stressful, it has also been very rewarding seeing so many people join to help find and fund research for a cure! I still think for time to time what was I thinking?!?!?!?! Once I have a small freakout, I remember the reason I am doing this and the immense amount of support I have received from my friends, family, and COMMITTEE!!!

The event is this Friday, April 27-28. I am starting to stress a little, but I think once things start getting set up and the event gets under way, I think everything will be fabulous! If you are interested in donating, our website is listed here Relay for Life of East Orange

I will be back this weekend with a recap of how everything went!!!! :)

Below is the reason our event is 18 hours:

 Relay For Life is an 18 hour journey providing the light of day and dark of night to parallel the physical effects, emotions and mental state of a cancer patient while undergoing treatment.Relay For Life begins during the day, when the sun is shining bright and the excitement and energy is flowing through the community. The setting sun symbolizes the time when a patient is diagnosed with cancer. The day is getting darker and this represents the cancer patient’s state of mind as he or she feels that life is on an unknown journey. As the evening goes on it gets cooler and darker, just as the emotions of the cancer patient do.
Around 1:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m. Relay participants have been walking for hours and may begin to feel tired and the desire to take a break or go home. This represents the time when a cancer patient starts treatment. It is at this time that many patients become exhausted, some sick, not wanting to go on, possibly wanting to give up. Just as the cancer patient cannot give up on his or her treatment, Relay participants push through this phase, showing unity with cancer patients around the world.
By 4:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. Relayers are truly exhausted, but the end is in sight and they begin to believe they will make it to the morning celebration. This symbolizes the coming of the end of treatment for the cancer patient who is tired, but who has hope and motivation to push through until the end of treatment.
The sun rising represents the end of treatment for the cancer patient. They see the light at the end of the tunnel and know that life will go on. The morning light brings on a new day full of life and excitement for new beginnings for the cancer patient. As a participant, you will feel the brightness of the morning and know that the end of the RELAY is close at hand. You will feel triumphant in the knowledge that you, one person, has made an impact in the fight against cancer.
When you leave the RELAY, think of the cancer patient leaving his or her last treatment. Just as you are exhausted and weak, so is that person after treatment. But a new day has arrived and we are continuing to take up the fight against cancer. REMEMBER: There is no finish line until we find a cure.

Monday, April 16, 2012

FCAT testing

This weekend did not allow me to line up my posts like I normally do, so I will post when I can throughout the week.

Today started FCAT for elementary, middle and high school students. FCAT stands for Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test. This test determines whether or not kids can receive their high school diplomas when they take it in 10th grade. It is a high stakes test that stresses a lot of people out!

I was so nervous about the testing last night, that not only did I not sleep well, I had a bit of a nightmarish dream. Everything that could go wrong in regards to the test did go wrong in my dream. I woke up several times to realize that it was just a dream. My test material was messed up and parts were missing, I was late to school, I couldn't get in my classroom, the kids didn't listen when I asked to put away all electronic devices and I had to invalidate all of the tests.

LUCKILY....that was all just a dream!

Testing went very well today! I couldn't be happier with how things went in regards to the students I tested! Tomorrow is the second part of test! If you happen to be thinking about my students for whatever reason, wish them luck! I know many are stressed about it!

I mentioned this dream to one of my classes and one student said, "Do you have regular dreams?" He meant do I have dreams not related to teaching. I just laughed and said, "Of course I do!"  :)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Happy Birthday to you!

Today is my beautiful sister's 27th birthday! She is my best friend and we always have fun together! I am so glad she lives about 10 minutes from me. Even though we are both really busy, it is still nice to know we are just down the street from each other!

Even though we have our differences, we usually agree to disagree! I am so proud of everything she has accomplished in her life and it has been fun watching her grow up as my big seester! :)

Happy birthday to you!
Happy birthday to you!
Happy birthday to Ashley!
Happy birthday to you!

I hope it is fabulous I love you :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

In memory...we miss you

It has been a year to the date that we lost a family member on my husband's side of the family. We all really struggled with the loss and sometimes it is still not easy to think about. I know my husband was very hurt by the loss. We had just seen Uncle Rick at Thanksgiving and everything was wonderful with him at that time, so when the news came in April, it was very much as a shock!

I think about him often and wanted to dedicate this post to him! While I did not get to spend much time with him, he was a very caring person and intriguing to talk to. He left behind a wonderful daughter, two granddaughters, brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews. I know that we all miss him very much and think about him often.

I close this post with these song lyrics by Rascal Flatts...

"Oh, why? That's what I keep askin'
Was there anything we could have said or done?
Oh, I had no clue you were masking
A troubled soul, God only knows what went wrong
And why you'd leave the stage in the middle of a song
your absolutely beautiful song."

Uncle Rick we miss you and may you rest in peace! 

Monday, April 9, 2012

Wonderful weekends and Easter Sunday

I have decided that weekends go by entirely too quick! I think we should work for four days and then have three day weekends!! That sounds wonderful to me :)

This weekend wasn't originally going to be busy, but it ended up being so as they always do! On Saturday, I helped teach the FCAT Saturday Success camp. These Saturday sessions are supposed to recap two different aspects of reading in order to help the students prepare for the FCAT test on April 16-17. My subject was literary analysis and because it is such a huge topic, I focused on theme, tone and mood. I felt like it went very well and the students were very engaged! It was rough getting up at 5:30 a.m. on my weekend!

Later that evening, we went to Senor Frogs to celebrate a friends birthday! We had a fabulous time! Ate, drank a lot and had a merry time! After we finished up, we decided to go putt putt golfing. It seemed like a good idea, but no one was playing seriously so we just kind of meandered through and played a hole here and there. It sure was funny to watch since most of us were a smidge intoxicated. Even though it was so much fun, I am sure some of us were paying the price the next morning.
The group at Senor Frogs

Easter Sunday! Our family went to church together at a Lutheran church downtown Orlando. It was a very nice service and it felt really good to be back in church since it has been since early January :-| We had Easter dinner at our parents house and it sure was yummy!