Thursday, January 8, 2015

Scholastic Link

Many have asked for the direct link to my classroom's Scholastic Book Club account.  See below.

Friday, January 2, 2015

2015.... Here's to New Beginnings

New Year.  So much to think about.

2014 was a good year.  It was also a hard year.  Garrett began a job late in 2013 that took him away from another job that he enjoyed.  He didn't enjoy the pay, but the job itself was a pretty good one.  Enter new job and the promise of climbing the ladder, more money, more time with family.  All was well until it was snatched out from under him one day just a few days into 2014.  We were devastated.  He was crushed.  He searched and looked for over a month while the stress of no benefits, the irony that my most favorite job ever wasn't coming close to paying the bills, and just every day life as a mom, wife, and college student came crashing down on me.

He began a new job a few long weeks later.  This job has him travel an hour plus out of town each day, which means our time with him is so very little, but we are thankful for a job.  He is able to spend the night with his parents a few days a week to save on gas and time, and for that we're also thankful as he is able to stay more plugged in with them.  My heart hurts when I wake up at 3:00 AM to a running shower and breaks into a million pieces when he gets home for dinner and goes straight to bed, but for now, we're making the best of it.

2014 saw the end of 2nd grade and beginning of 3rd grade for Saralynn.  She is flourishing in school.  She began classes in our Enrichment/Gifted program in August and couldn't be happier.  She has an amazing 3rd grade team of teachers whose only flaw is that they cheer for those War Birds.  She has one teacher who is a UGA fan that she holds tightly to.  :)

2014 saw the end of an era for the Pelt Crew.  Carter left day care at the FBC Child Development Center in May.  Both kids attended there from 7 weeks of age until they went to Pre-K.  Walking out the doors for the last time was emotional, but the raise we got after no more day care payments helped soften the blow.

Carter played T-ball for the first time in the spring of 2014, and then played soccer in the fall.  It's no surprise, but we have an athlete on our hands!  He loves second base and just loves the whole "get out and chase the ball" concept of soccer.  We have quite a bit of refining to do if he sticks with soccer, but we'll get there.

Saralynn continues to dance and loves every single second of it.  She danced as an icicle in Cinderella in March and danced as a sheep in the Nutcracker in December.  I love watching her glide across the stage.  She is a beautiful dancer.

2014 brought a change in roles for me at school, and I couldn't be happier.  I serve our most academically challenged kindergarteners in a small group setting as a Kindergarten EIP parapro.  I run a lab out of the classroom I shared with my teacher last year and I absolutely love my job.  2014 also brought with it a change in college campuses.  I'm now attending West Georgia Technical College, gathering the last of my core classes underneath me in hopes of transferring back to a 4 year college for a degree soon.

2014 was good to us and I look forward to all that 2015 has in store.  Stay tuned!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

This Little Light of Mine

I sing.  As often as I can.  Whether in front of an audience, or in my car, or with my students at school, or in the shower.  I sing.

Each year, I sing the Special Music on the last Sunday.  This year was no exception.  Saralynn and I sang together on December 30th for the first time on a Sunday.  I sang a solo in church for the first time around age 3 or 4.  It has always been important to me to foster the love of singing in my children, if that is a desire of their heart. Saralynn has always loved to "practice" with me when I sing on the Worship Team, and has always held her unpowered microphone with gusto as we sing.  She has begged for a long time to sing with me, so we sang together earlier in the summer.  I sang a version of "This Little Light of Mine" by Addison Road that was so very cool- I stumbled on it on iTunes and still have never heard it on the radio, though I'm not sure why.  Saralynn joined me on stage and sang the traditional "This little light of mine... Let it shine till Jesus comes..." and it was awesome.  My baby was wonderful!

We sang it again that Sunday, and once again, she did an amazing job.  I am one proud Mama.

Fast forward to Tuesday afternoon in the car.  We were driving to get Carter when Saralynn asks, "Mommy, when we get to Heaven, will we still be sinners?"  I had to ask her to repeat her question more than once as I tried to process what she meant.  Once I gathered my thoughts, I explained that once we got to Heaven, we would sit at the feet of Jesus and sing songs of praise to Him and wouldn't have time to think about anything that would make us sin.  She asked my mom the same question, and got basically the same answer... Sin happens and exists because of things going on in this world.  Since Heaven isn't this world, there won't be room to sin...  (paraphrased for a 6 year old, of course.  I couldn't tell if our answers resonated with Saralynn or not, so I asked her how she felt.  She said, "it's ok if you don't know all the answer, Mommy.  I'm sure Mr. Frank (our high school and college minister) does.  I'll ask him."  She amazes me.

Tonight, Thursday, we were watching a rerun of this past Sunday's church service, and she and my mom were talking while I cooked dinner.  I looked into the den and saw my mom in a puddle of tears.  I don't know for sure, but I figure she said something that touched my mom...

As we were going to bed, she asked to lead the prayer tonight.  Usually, I say a phrase and she and Carter repeat, but tonight, she asked to lead.  My heart swelled and my heart caught a lump.  :)  The devotion in her church-provided book was about how she (it's written on her level) can share and show Jesus to those around her.  She said, "we can tell them that Jesus died for us, not because He had to, but because He wanted to."  We talked about her wearing her Children's Ministry shirt to school today and telling her teacher which church she attends.  We talked about how she performed 6 Random Acts of Kindness for her 6th birthday.  She said I showed Jesus when I took food to our friends who had their baby last week.

Jesus is becoming more and more real to my baby, people.  That alone should be what I live for every day!  I saw a Facebook post a month or so ago (actually, after the Connecticut shooting) where a Christian recording artist I follow noted that we as Christians should long for the day when Jesus returns.  She also mentioned, though, that she couldn't help but want to ask God to tarry on behalf of her unsaved brother.  I felt my heart crying for the same.  Jesus, You know I want to spend eternity with You, but I want my children to be there, too.  Please save their souls before You return.

I just can't help but think (and pray) that the day is coming soon when my daughter, my firstborn, my beloved daughter, becomes my sister in Christ, and that makes me want to SING again.

However, it is currently 9:53 PM and the only sound in the house is my typing, so I think I'll offer up a prayer instead.  :)

"Let it shine till Jesus comes, I'm gonna let it shine.  Let it shine, let it shine let it SHINE."

Jesus knows me, this I love

Wednesday.  Church day.  Yippee!

Our church had a great Family Night planned last week, but since we were down and out with the stomach virus, we didn't make it.  We were bummed.  But, we made it back tonight!

I teach 4 year old choir, and they are amazing.  They are a BUNCH of boys and just a few girls.  They are sweet.  They are energetic.  They are talkative.  They are trying.  They are festive.  They are His.  And He allows me the blessing of them for 45 minutes each week, and I don't take that blessing lightly.

There are some amazing people who care for my kids while I teach other children, and I'm grateful for them, too.  Mrs. Aundrea, Mr. John, Mrs. Laura, Mr. Gavin, and Mrs. Kitty teach Saralynn stories about Jesus.  Mrs. Lynne, Mrs. Mary, Mrs. Debbie, Miss Brooke, and Miss Catherine teach Saralynn songs about Jesus.  Mrs. Faye and Ms. Carol care for Carter and his friends in their room, which Carter affectionately calls his "choir" room.  They (and anyone else I may've mistakenly left out) are fabulous.

Tonight, we sang "Oh, how He loves you and me", and the voices that filled the room were angelic.  We made Valentines to send to the troops overseas.  God works in and through the hearts of 4 year olds.

Don't believe me?

Come check out the Turtle Room at FBCOTS on Wednesdays and leave unchanged.  I dare you.

Tuesday. Zesty Italian Chicken, Chili, and Baby Toes

I took dinner to some friends of ours who had their first baby last week.  AC is a beautiful girl.  I asked tonight who she looked like and got varying responses, but she is gorgeous, nonetheless.  It was so refreshing to hold her and think back to the time my babies were small.  I admit to a little bit of baby fever, but walking back into my house to the tantrum of a 3 year old and the attitude of a 6 year old that were both raging at that point, was just the medicine I needed to cure my ailment.  :)

Tuesday was just a run-of-the-mill kind of day.  And a day I was thankful did not include a late football game because Mama is tired and hitting the hay early!

Can I get a "Roll Tide?!"

Last night was the National Championship game.  My beloved Alabama Crimson Tide, ranked #2 after a loss earlier in the season to Texas A&M under the leadership of "Johnny Football" Manziel, played the #1 ranked and undefeated Notre Dame Fighting Irish.  I have loved the Tide for a long time now, mostly because of my Daddy.  He is my hero, my first love, the one Jesus chose to be my earthly daddy.  I had a great-uncle (actually by marriage on my mom's side, so not even "blood related" to my daddy) that instilled a love for the Tide in Daddy.  I've grown up watching sports, namely basketball, football, and baseball.  Daddy played basketball like it was his lifeblood when I was young, and I've always enjoyed watching him, whether on the court or the softball field.  I ate, slept, and breathed sports as a young girl, and truth be told, I still do...  If I had a do-over in life, I would follow my dream of being a sportscaster...

I digress.

I so looked forward to watching "the big game" with the family, but instead, after the first full day back in the routine, everyone was zapped and in bed by 8:00, and some before.  I watched in utter amazement as my Tide spanked the Irish 42-14.  The score easily could've been 70 or more.  It was a sight to behold.  It was pretty much fact that Alabama was the more superior team in every sense of the word, but I was genuinely surprised that the Irish didn't give them *this much more* of a fight than they did.  The Irish were seeking their first National Championship in 25 years, yet they played like it was the first day of spring practice.

I commend Coach Saban and his staff on a well coached, well thought out game.  And mad props to Barrett Jones, who lives out his faith both on and off the field.  "If I'm known as Barrett Jones- he's a great Alabama football player- then I'm not doing my job  I want to be known as Barrett Jones- he's a Christian who happens to play football- not a football player who happens to be a Christian."

Fight on, men.  Roll Tide.  You achieved your 15th National Championship in school history, and became the first club in Football Bowl Series history to win Back to Back championships.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

First Day Back

(note- I thought I published this, but I saved it as a draft...  oops)

Monday.  FIrst day back at school.  The day we've all looked forward to.  No, really, we have.  We are ready for the routine!

My alarm went off at 5:00 AM for the first time in 21 days.  That part I didn't really like so much, but it was the sign that we were returning to normal.  I made lunches for Garrett, Saralynn, and me, and got Carter's stuff all ready for his new classroom.  The morning went off pretty much without a hitch.

I dropped Carter off in his new room and he wasn't really all that excited.  He didn't cry, but he didn't go very willingly either.  I could kick myself for not taking any morning pictures of either child...

It was nice to see my school babies again!  We didn't have any criers, and only 4 that forgot their computer login info, which I thought was great!  They transitioned right back into school life nicely.  Last year's first day back was much rustier than this one...

I picked Saralynn up from school and she talked the entire way home about her friends and her day.  It was fun to hear the excitement in her voice again.

I made dinner (Zesty Italian chicken), and it was yummy!

Then, it was time for the BIG GAME.  My Alabama Crimson Tide, ranked #2, against undefeated Notre Dame, ranked #1.  I just KNEW we would all enjoy the game together.  Wrong.  By 8:30 I was THE ONLY one still awake.  Yuck.  I watched all but the 4th quarter (which I recorded to watch later).  I was just too tired.  I fell asleep to a 42-7 lead, so I felt like they could handle it at that point without me.  :)

Smiling faces enjoyed their first day back!


And some tired babies...