Monday, October 19, 2009

Life takes over

So I guess its been awhile... but a lot has happened! My last post was just 2 (ish) weeks before I moved to Houston. Since then I have started my job, John has moved to Houston with me (just about a month after my departure from Colorado), and we have begun the process of selling the house.

A month apart from John was really difficult. I was far more stressed and sad than I can put into words, but the apart time was necessary. During that month I spent time with my parents and the rest of the family, as well as got used to my teaching schedule, so I was lucky to have distractions. But I wouldn't recommend that process to ANYONE! If you have the choice, don't separate, at least that's my advice. John and I spent hours on the phone together every night, and we spent time on a web cam at least once a week, but neither is a replacement for sitting on the couch together and cuddling. Thank goodness he is home with me now. I think the time apart truly strengthened our relationship.

Can you believe that just about a month after we put the house on the market we got an offer and things started to move. I have to say that I don't like the house selling/buying process, but it is nice that our closing is just around the corner. After we agreed on the selling price, and we haggled over the inspection, all we have left is the appraisal, so things are going smoothly! I think that the woman buying our house must have just fallen in love because she has taken everything we have asked for without much complaint. Of course, she is getting a great house with a lot of special amenities! I think the kitchen and the bathrooms must have been BIG selling points. With all of the housing market horror stories you hear about, I think we are probably very lucky to be selling as quickly as we are! Closing is scheduled for Nov. 13th, so cross your fingers for us!

Hopefully you will hear from me again soon!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Update on the To DO List

-Paint the Trim in Bedroom 1 (Done)
-Move everything from bedroom one to bedroom 2 (Done)
-Primer and Paint bedroom 2 (Done)
-Remove carpet and carpet pad from bedroom 2 (Done)
-Finishing installing trim in house (in progress)
-Redo upstairs bathroom (in progress)
-Put finishing touches on bathroom downstairs (Done)
-Stain outside Deck (Tomorrow's project as long as I can get a day or so without rain)
-Sod Front Yard (John's project tomorrow... a reason to hope for rain in the evening)
-General cleaning of the house (ongoing)
-Packing (almost done)
-Organize storage room to put moving boxes (Done)
-Have Carpet Installed in 2 upstairs bedrooms (next week)
-Install new light fixtures throughout the house (done)

New Additions:
-Have carpet and ducts cleaned
-Put up window treatments
-Clean windows from the outside
-Landscape (add plants to front yard area)
-Sell House!!!

Tick! Tock! Tick! Tock!

Lately I have been joking about hearing that internal clock that most women have that gets louder as baby time approaches. I say "joking" because I am usually just teasing John about it whenever I mention it. But lately John says my clock is so loud he can hear it across the room. In fact, I am beginning to think that what I was originally joking about is not actually a joke anymore. Just the other day we were watching t.v. together, and a peanut butter commercial came on where a little girl makes her dad a sandwich because he is making her a tree house. I said I thought it was a really cute, touching commercial and John said I must be ticking because it was actually pretty lame. Then tonight I was watching "The Father of the Bride II" and couldn't stop crying as the two women in the movie go into labor and Steve Martin's character is worried about both and then they both have healthy babies... I am telling you, tears where streaming down my face. I was really boo hooing!

That is what made me realize that this "we need to have kids in a couple of years thing" is not really a joke anymore. I think John has been way ahead of me on this process, but it is still a bit of a suprise to me. I wish someone made internal ear muffs to drown out that noise. Isn't it funny how even when we are busy planning out our lives, God has a way of telling us exactly what it is time for. I believe that even when we are busy turning a deaf ear to everyone's plans but our own, God has a way of getting in there and saying, "hey, you! It's time" Funny huh?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Lack of Motivation?

Have you ever really needed to get some things done, I mean really needed to do them, but can't seem to drag your butt off of the couch? I have no idea what is going on, but the past few days have been beyond uneventful for me. Is it because I have nothing to do... hell no! We NEED to get this house on the market, like yesterday, and I have so much to do before it goes up. Plus, the sooner it goes up, the sooner we can sell it (hopefully). But for whatever reason, I have been sitting on the couch, messing around on the internet, and generally, veging.

To DO List for the House:
-Paint the trim in Bedroom 1 one more time
-Move everything from bedroom 1 to bedroom 2
-Primer and paint bedroom 2
-remove carpet and carpet pad from bedroom 2
-Finish installing trim in house
-Redo upstairs bathroom
-Put finishing touches on Bathroom downstairs (paint trim)
-Stain outside deck
-Sod Front Yard
-Genreal cleaning of house
-Organize storage room to put moving boxes
-Have Carpet installed in 2 upstairs bedrooms
-Install new light fixtures throughout the house

So for those of you who are wondering why I am not showing my excitement at moving back home... that To DO list is why. I feel like if we don't get these things done soon, my husband's physical absence from my everyday life will be my own fault (good old Catholic Guilt). That's not too much pressure, is it? And the funny thing is, when I actually get up and move my butt, I feel good about myself, I feel physically good, and I (of course) am accomplishing the things on my list. I think the really frustrating part of all of this is my lack of skill in the things that must be done. How can I help to get things on track when I have to wait for John's help, even on the things that I think I can do myself (like paint the deck). Maybe this is just my needyness conflicting with my need to control... Man I am a little weird!

So if I am short with you, please allow me to apologize, and know that it is most likely me and not you. I have been a little rude to people lately...I am going to blame it on the stress.

Thanks for understanding, and thanks for reading my posts. It is always cool to see that people have read or commented on my thoughts and concerns. You guys are great friends!

Friday, June 26, 2009


So Packing is not as easy as it sounds. When John and I first started talking about moving, he told me that my job over the next few months was to pack up the house... and I said, "that is absolutely no problem." Well... the problem is that there is just so much to pack and I'm not sure what I will need and what is okay to pack. I guess I can start with most of the kitchen. Sounds weird, right? The good news is that we never unpacked most of our kitchen wedding presents, so we will be taking those and giving away the old stuff. Goodwill or the Disabled American Vets will be getting a large donation soon. Some more good news? One of my former student's parents owns a liquor store and they gave me lots and lots of boxes! Yea!

A Question. What do you do with the containers in your home that hold things like flour, corn meal, etc.? Especially if they aren't going straight to your new home. What about appliances? What do you leave out and what do you pack? I guess since I packed all of my baking stuff, I can pack my kitchen aid. Right? Spices?

I'm sure things will all work out. Thank goodness for friends who are coming over to help us with the house this weekend. Let the painting, and packing, and cleaning begin.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Job Search is Over!

I know it has been a long time since my last post, but a great deal has been going on and I have had to keep it under wraps until things were final. As many of you know, I have been out looking for a new job since about the beginning of April. I had applied in every school district anyway near Loveland, and by the end of May, had only had 2 interviews. When it became apparent that the teaching job market was saturated with qualified teachers, John suggested that I begin to look elsewhere.

I checked the job market in lots of places, but, to no one's surprise, there were/ are lots of postings for English teachers in the Houston area. After sending out several resumes to school districts all over the Houston area, I was asked to fly in for a few interviews, including at schools that didn't even have an opening. The week after school let out, I flew into Houston and went on 5 or 6 interviews in one week. While I thought all of the interviews went well, the last of the interviews was the best of the bunch. As the interview was coming to a close, the department chair told me not to do anymore interviews. Of course, I continued to apply, but just yesterday, a Saturday actually, I got a call from the Principal at Spring High School in Houston, TX, offering me a job.

John and I had done a LOT of talking and evaluating in the past few weeks, and decided that it was for the best that we go ahead and relocate to Houston. The money is better, the cost of living is lower, and John can get back into what he went to school for. Also, I will have job security again, something difficult to find here in Colorado.

Of course, I am VERY excited about heading back home to Texas to be close to family and friends, but we will miss the family and friends we have here in Colorado. John is actually speaking to his family about the move as we speak. I know that this will be very difficult for them, and I never wanted to cause them pain. They are a close bunch, just like my family, and John moving will be arduous for them. I do think that they have an idea already, as they have been calling more often than usual, but hearing John say aloud that we are leaving will be a tough pill to swallow.

So if you are in the Houston area and you enjoy lifting heavy boxes for a reward of food and/or beer, we will be giving you a call in August or September (or whenever we buy a place) to help us unload a POD. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Job Search (but with less optimism)

If you have been keeping up with me on Facebook you will know that I am deep in the search for a new job. I will have to admit that I had forgotten how difficult the search can be and how miserable it can make me feel. When I began the process I was feeling fairly optimistic as there were 8 Language Arts positions opening up in my current school district and I knew people on all 3 of the hiring committees. I had been told that it is all about who you know in these kinds of situations, and through Speech and Debate I have been able to do a fair amount of networking. Unfortunately, this has not seemed to help all that much thus far. Of the 3 schools hiring in Ft. Collins, only 2 of them offered me an interview, removing half of the 8 positions from my search. Then, yesterday, I called the first school I had interviewed at to find out that those 3 had already been filled.

So now I am waiting to hear from the final high school (in Fort Collins) that still might have an opening for me. I have to admit that I felt GREAT about that interview when I left. I walked out of there and called everyone I knew to tell them that I had knocked every single question out of the park and that I really felt that I was starting to get the hang of this interview thing. I think that the people on that committee got a true sense of who I am based on my personality and the way I answered the questions they asked. As I left the interview I was able to leave my portfolio with the committee so that they could read the letters of recommendation written on my behalf as well as look over some of my teaching materials in order to give them an idea of who I am as a teacher.

But now I am feeling down and out. Why, you ask? The assistant principal assured me that they were hoping to make a decision quickly and that I should hear something Monday. Today is Wednesday and my phone is still not ringing. I have almost given up hope, though I am trying to remember what a great feeling I had when leaving that interview. My hope is that they are trying to check my references or that they were held up in their decision making process. I have called the school (Tuesday afternoon) and was forced to leave a voice mail for the assistant principal. I am, of course, anxious to hear from him, but frightened as well. None of the other districts seem to be posting Language Arts positions at this time, though John keeps reminding me that it is still very early. School isn't even out yet.

This is such a bad situation for one's self esteem. I keep telling myself that I am a good teacher and that schools would be lucky to have someone like me who cares about students as much as I do. My students keep coming to me, now that we are nearing the end of our journey together, to tell me how much they enjoyed my class and that I am one of their favorite teachers this year. I feel dedicated to the teaching profession and know that this is what I am meant to do with my life. I am a teacher. But how can you keep our head up when people choose not to hire you? How can I not take it personally? I have networked and I have been myself, and it isn't enough. I am starting to feel dread and doubt, and I am not sleeping (it is 5:30 a.m. and I usually sleep till at least 6). How do you stay optimistic and keep a positive attitude when you are being told, you are not good enough to teach here?

So far I have been doing a great deal of praying. I pray when I make dinner, and before I go to bed, and when I am driving. I pray when I am trying to sleep and when I am giving a test. Even as I blog I am mindful of God and His plan for me. I know that He will lead me where I am supposed to be in His time, not mine. And if I will just get out of His way, He will lead me. It is the only way I have found to maintain ANY kind of peace in my life, though as you can tell it hasn't give me all that much peace just yet (probably more my fault than God's). I am also trying to just keep my thoughts positive. If I am open to anything so that I will be ready when my opportunity presents itself.

So please keep me in your thoughts and prayers. (And if you hear of English teacher positions, send them my way). Hopefully I will have something more optimistic to share with you soon.

Oh, and my transmission in my car went out too... why again am I feeling down? More on that later!