Monday, 31 January 2011

It's like rain on your wedding day

Things I have found difficult about today:

- children in my form being bullied by other children in my form
- never quite knowing exactly what I'm supposed to be doing
- year 11 being massively behind on their coursework
- having no time to do anything at all
- ...or rather having every minute of every day assigned to doing something that needs doing
- feeling inept
- having inadequate heating in my classroom
- having to vent my sadness on a blog, rather than to a real life breathing person.

I can think of a few more, but I think I'll leave it there.

Sunshine through my window

Things I liked about today:

- loud music in the car
- Vampire Weekend in my living room
- exciting thesis-useful responses from year 12
- better paced year 7 lesson
- discovering I can reply to Facebook comments via email
- eating two Cadbury's cream eggs back to back
- lasagne for tea
- my mother

That's all I can think of for now.

Friday, 28 January 2011

Post No. 60

(Significant numbered post = opportunity for slight pretentiousness. Apologies in advance...)

Opportunity knocks...
Carpe Diem
and everything happens for a reason.

Life, it would seem, is a mélange of opportunities - those we take, those we don't, those we don't realise we've taken until we're in the middle of them, and those we didn't realise we could have taken until we didn't...

It feels, at the moment, like I'm in the middle of one of those opportunities that I took without really realising what might happen if I took it. I'm in a job that is actually enjoyable, working with people I could actually be actual friends with - in fact, looking at a house share with one of them. Which is literally life-changing. Well, habit-changing at least... plus, I'm at a church where I feel like I could get properly stuck into.

What I need to make sure is that I'm not sitting back observing this opportunity pass me by, with an interested detachment, but instead grabbing hold of it with both fists, and seizing the moments as they arise.

I figure you're less likely to miss out on good things if this is the attitude to take.
(Like record players, complete with additional usb ports and funky wooden panelling that are sold out and no longer available... )

Carpe diem!
Do it!

"Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?"
Isaiah 43:18-19

(don't miss it)

Monday, 24 January 2011

Summer Finn

I wish I looked like her.

...or her:

but not her...

(though to be fair, it's probably just the curlers and lipstick that aren't doing her justice...)

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

I heart Birthdays

Whoop whoop!

Quarter of a century...
Halfway to 50...
Two and a half decades...



I'd like me some more of that :-)

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Jammin' in da name of de Lord (and other stories)

What a lovely weekend.

On Friday evening, I got home from work, pottered around, cleaning, tidying, cooking old vegetables before they became completely inedible etc etc. Then one by one, two of my Nottingham housemates arrived in Ketts for to celebrate my birthday!

I didn't manage to cook for them, despite claims I would (I am an embarrassingly bad cook), but we ate pizza and garlic bread, and drank rosé and watched Sherlock Holmes, and talked and chilled out. Hard. Core.

Then on Saturday, my fake birthday day, we (I) gorged on carbohydrates (croissants, muffins, waffles) and coffee in traditional Marlborough Street Birthday Breakfast style, after which we spent nearly an hour driving around looking for a massive reservoir that should have been a) obvious and b) 20 mins away. Not ideal. Plus I ran over a pheasant. Bleurgh.

Then we found it! (the reservoir, not the pheasant) Hurray. So after a necessary re-stocking of energy (I was getting very unpleasant to be around), we walked around a bit, then used the Sat Nav to get us home again. This was followed by presents, cake and candles, and cocktails in Frankie and Benny's.

Today, I spent the afternoon at a 'Worship Jam Session' at my church - it was ace. Lots of instruments, singers and lovely people, playing a few songs all together. Loved it.


(I hope you like jammin' too)


"I will sing and make music to the Lord"
Psalm 27:6

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Dear Miss Brooks...

Today my year 12s thoroughly cheered me up.
(not that I actually needed cheering - I've been uncharacteristically upbeat of late)

I gave them a pre-structured postcard to send me. It went something like this:

I was a bit nervous about giving it to them - after all, nobody wants to hear when they've been "less helpful", especially when your job is primarily based on a desire to help people learn. I did, however, really want to hear what they next wanted me to do for them.

They surprised me by being pretty honest, but also amazingly positive. In fact, look at this...

They all decided to design postcard pictures on the back for me too, just coz they thought that'd make it a 'proper' postcard. Look!

I have my own boat!

Anyway, it was really exciting, and bouyed me up for the rest of the day. Plus, it's given me all sorts of insight into how they think they're doing, and what they want help with next. Hurrah!

Oh, and then I had 26 year 7s turn up to choir! We ran out of space! Woo hoo, well done enthusiastic children :-)

So all in all - a good day.

"Painters do their art on a canvas,
Musicians do their art on silence"

- a quote from a year 12, written on the back of one of the postcards

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Time Wasting

I was sitting here thinking, "I really really should be doing some work", and then I looked at my timetable for tomorrow, and realised I already know exactly what I'm doing in each lesson. Hurray!!

I do, however, need to find some pieces of music to inspire my year 12s in their compositions, so will do that in a bit, but thought I'd waste a bit of time on here first...

I've had a most lovely weekend. I went back to mother and father's on Friday evening, then spent Saturday being pampered in gorgeous swimming pools and steam rooms and bubbling pools and rose-scented ovens. It was amazing!

Then church re-started today, and I talked to a few people I'd talked to before, and they are still lovely. There are tons of exciting things to get involved with at my church, and I found myself considering moving closer to it come September, so that I can get more involved in things like Soup Run and other community-based evening things. I can't do that this year anyway, as it's on a Thursday, which is MEd day.

Speaking of which, I have lots to be doing for that... I will use tomorrow's study period for reviewing literature, I think. Possibly...

Anyway, I'm excited about 2011.


Also... 9 days til my birthday. YEAH, BABY!

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress..."
James 1:27

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Feeling chipper

So at the start of this school week, (so, er, yesterday...) I was overwhelmed by a massive amount of anxiety, and I couldn't quite place why.

Then I realised it's because I'd been emotionally transported back to this time last year, which was when I started working at the Toxic School. One of the most traumatic days of my life. (Possibly).

Little did I know that 2 of the 4 classes I had that day were widely acknowledged as 2 of the most difficult classes in the whole school. And this was followed by 2 year 7 classes, both of which were pretty nice, but one of which consisted of the most hyperactive and talkative children I have ever had the ... pleasure... privilege... whatever... of teaching.

Anyway, a bad day.

So in my head, I was going back to school after Christmas, and I actually have quite a few new classes, because of the strange timetable rotation that happens at my current school.

I was bracing myself for horrendous Toxic children, feeling the butterflies consume my insides and my back ache from tension...

Then they were lovely! Praise the Lord! Hallelujah for nice children!

I have spent the last two days singing lots, having a giggle, and enjoying being back at school. Definitely have NOT got back into the routine of planning efficiently, and despite being exhausted, I have consistently left planning til far too late, and consequently haven't been in bed til far too late o'clock. Similarly tonight I still have two lessons to sort out, and instead I'm sitting here in my pyjamas, on my laptop, listening to Amy McDonald and busy reminiscing.

Also, I have made proper meals the last 3 nights. Well done, me. (nearly resorted to a Dairy Milk Dinner again tonight, but I made myself make the effort to make something proper. Chicken casserole it was. Hurray!)

Right, I'm going to go and sort out what needs to be done for tomorrow and then go to bed. Speedy planning, bed by 10pm.

Yes please!

"The Lord says, "I will give you back what you lost". "
Joel 2:25

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Resolving #2

So, 2010 was "the year for being honest".

It got me in a few situations, but also out of a few more, in a respectable and clear-conscienced way.

It made me think, what could 2011 be the year for?

I could go with an idea stolen from my sister, and make it "the year for saying yes". Or I could stick with the original, and go with "the year for still being honest".

I think I will make it "the year for making an effort".

That way, I will hopefully be driven to do all things to the best of my ability - including the difficult things like talking to people I don't know/don't know very well, and going to events where I won't know anyone, and giving people lifts in my car.

(weird - I drove 2 1/2 hours to Bristol, down 4 motorways - never having driven on a motorway in my life - and back again, in the space of 24 hours, but I couldn't bring myself to offer one of my best friends a lift. I'm not sure why - I think it's coz I think I'm really bad at driving (I am pretty bad at driving), and I was too ashamed to let him see me be bad at something. Eugh, pride. Begone!).

Anyway, I think that will be it.

2011: "The year for making an effort".

"whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men."
Colossians 3:23


Not making resolutions means you can never break them.

Not falling in love means you can never fall out of love.

If you never get married, you can never get divorced.

If you don't try in the first place, you can never fail.

If at first you don't succeed, stop.

What a boring and falsely 'safe' way to live...

"Anything which isn't eternal, is eternally out of date"
C.S. Lewis

Saturday, 1 January 2011

01 - 01 - 11

Happy New Year!

Good things from 2010:
- new job
- driving license
- new friends
- lots of other lovely things I might add later, probably

Things to look forward to in 2011:
- new nephew/niece
- same job for a second year (what a novelty)
- new friends
- lots of other lovely things I might add later, probably

"...his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness."
Lamentations 3:22-23