July 27, 2011

My New Classroom!

My classroom is all decorated and school starts next Friday! I LOVE my new room. It's amazing. I have a full technology set up that is going to be so helpful with teaching my kids the Language! curriculum. Regina and Grant help me set up my room and hang everything up.

This is the view of my room from the door.

The right wall.

The back wall.

The left wall.

The front of the room.

I have been in curriculum training all week, and I have IEP technology training on Friday, district in-processing on Monday and teachers officially report back Wednesday!

Today I finished my course syllabus and first semester unit calendars for both of my classes! And thanks to help from Paige I now have appropriate clothes to wear to work. They actually dress up in Tennessee to teach...no jeans or flip flops allowed :(

July 24, 2011

Our "Great" Idea and Dad's Visit!

The other day we decided we would try a puzzle...Grant thought 1000 pieces would be too easy.

So far it's been really difficult. I helped with the edge pieces...and that's about it. But Grant's been a trooper and he's almost half way finished with it! Next time we're getting a puzzle with lots of different colors.

Dad worked in Houston all week so he flew in Friday to spend the weekend with us. It was so good to see him and I'm sad the trip was so quick! Friday he got to see my new school and a tour of post and we met up with Eric to see what it's like to fly helicopters. Then we headed downtown to have dinner at Edward's. It was delicious and the people working there were so friendly and great about my allergies.

We spent Saturday by the pool and then went to dinner at Fujiyama before we went to Jazz on the Lawn at Beachhaven Winery. It was so hot!

Tomorrow I start staff training for the new curriculum I'm teaching this year!

Less than two weeks until Scooter comes to visit!

July 20, 2011

I'm Employed!

Most of you know that moving to TN was a piece of cake compared to the process of transferring my teaching credentials.

Last Tuesday I finally received my final Praxis score...and I passed! So that morning I printed off the results and took them to the district office. Then I waited...and waited...I'm not sure who was more antsy between Grant and I.

But yesterday I finally received an email requesting a phone interview. Yesterday I had my phone interview with the district and today my application was released to the principals at the schools with special education openings.

At 12:50pm today I received a call asking me to come in for an interview at 2:30pm. So I showed up for my interview where I got to meet the principal and both assistant principals. I felt like the interview went really well and I loved the people I met.

By 4 oclock I was home anxiously awaiting any information since they told me I would hear within the next few days.

At 4:30 they called and asked for summer numbers for my references.

At 5:30 Grant and I were in the car when the phone rang...they offered me the job!

I am officially the newest Special Education Language! teacher for the district!!

I could not be more excited. The school is pretty much brand new, the administrators are wonderful, I get my own classroom, and I get to teach an amazing program that is really going to help these kids develop their reading skills!!!

July 11, 2011

Our Very First Visitor!

Caroline came to visit this weekend and it was WONDERFUL!! We made pizza Friday night and spent most of the weekend relaxing by the pool and watching trash tv. Unfortunately, Grant had to work all day Saturday, but I don't think he would have liked our TV shows anyway...luckily, we saved a few for him to watch with us when he got home!

Sunday morning we got up and went to church. The more time we spend there, the more time we love it and all the people we are meeting!

After a tour of Fort Campbell, and picking up groceries we came back home to eat and pack up before it was time to go to the airport.

The bottle of wine we picked up just for Caroline!

All in all it was a great weekend that went by too fast. I miss her already!

Next visitor countdown...Dad is less than two weeks!

July 7, 2011

4th of July!!

I can't believe we just celebrated the fourth of July. It feels like just yesterday Alexa was making inappropriate comments at Grizzly Peak and we were getting slurpees after watching the fireworks!

We celebrated with the 4th one night early with some new friends. They have the most adorable house in downtown Clarksville right next to Austin Peay University. And their backyard was the perfect spot to watch the Clarksville fireworks that were set off from the river.

Stalker photo of Clay and Regina...


So cute!

People in our apartment complex, and the one right next to us bought a lot of fireworks. There have been fireworks stands all over the place. Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday night they set them off. I was starting to go a little batty from all the popping noises. Thankfully there was silence last night and I didn't have to try to convince Grant to go hurt any of our new neighbors.

Grant got a five day weekend because of the holiday and we spent lots of time relaxing by the pool. He likes to go to the pool, swim, lay out and come home. I want to go, read, stick my toes in, and tan some more. We're still working on a compromise...

Last night we had our friends Clay, Regina, and Eric over for dinner! It was so much fun and I think we all ate too much!

Since Grant has been working full days this week, I've been laying out by the pool enjoying an actual summer. All and all I still feel like I'm on vacation every time I go to the pool even though our apartment feels like home.

Caroline countdown: 21 hours!!!!

July 6, 2011

Instant Gratification

I've discovered that Tennessee believes in a little something I like to call instant gratification.

Last week I had to go get a TN driver's license. Here they require everyone living in the state to get one within 30 days of moving...except of course for active military...I called the DMV to make an appointment like we can in California. The nice lady on the phone told me they don't make appointments but that I should get there early because the week before they had a six and a half hour wait time. The DMV opens at 7. According to this lady, people start lining up at 6:15. So when Grant got up for work, I got up for the DMV. I grumpily arrived at 6:45 and was number 15 in a line that was already wrapping around the building. After waiting another hour and a half inside, I finally was called to the counter, and another thirty minutes later I walked out of the building with my new driver's license in hand. They type in your info right there, send you over to the photo station where someone else takes your photo and minutes later they hand you your new id. In California, we have to wait weeks for the new one to arrive in the mail, so this was a pretty exciting party favor from my early...and long morning.

Today I had to go register my car in Tennessee. I walked up to the counter where I showed the sweetest lady my two forms of id and proofs of residency, along with the pink slip of course. Five minutes later she had swiped my credit card and I was walking out of the building with my new license plate in tow.

California could really learn something from this instant gratification.

July 2, 2011

Meerkats, and Tigers, and Lynx oo my!

We decided it was time to finally venture out of our Clarksville bubble. Grant suggested the Nashville Zoo and after a little research and a quick search in our GPS we were on our way. We've discovered that Nashville is really only about 35-40 minutes away from Clarksville so it's pretty much like going into the city for something.

This is the house within the zoo where several families lived over the years. After the great granddaughters died, they left the land and money to make the zoo.

Before we got really hot and tired...

The elephants were so beautiful. But they just kept standing around the big pool of water. With how hot it was, they should have been jumping around in it.

The big male giraffe started to get a little frisky with one of the female giraffes. It was a little awkward to watch along with all of the families and small children at the zoo. We moved right along to the next exhibit.

The little meerkats were my favorites!!! They were just born the end of January and they looked very cute and snuggly minus they sharp claws. There was one meerkat that kept nibbling on another. Reminded me so much of Mango and Kato. The other meerkat even tried to sit on the nibbler just like Kato does with Mango.

The lynx! They have specially padded paws so that they can approach their prey silently and still hunt during the winter.

Picture in the alligator hut...fully embracing our new southern lifestyle. I feel like we should be adding Swamp Wars to the DVR.

Grant and his alligator friend.

The zoo was really well designed. This was the bamboo forest. Most of the walkways were designed with trees all around so that we were walking in the shade.

Hot and tired at the end of the day...in front of the cougars! Just like high school...

We can't remember what types of monkeys these are...But the male monkey is on the right and he was holding hands with the other monkey and licking her face. It was pretty adorable. And he was clearly very proud of himself.

On the way home we had to stop and get gas. Grant got us cold drinks, and of course, he needed a Milky Way...in reference to our favorite billboard from Columbus, GA...chubby isn't cute if you have diabetes...

By the time we arrived back in Clarksville we were so hot and tired that we spent an hour at the pool before making dinner and eating on the patio. Now we're both sunkissed and exhausted after our adventure.

July 1, 2011

Settling in...

We've been here for over a week now and it is finally starting to feel like home. Grant started in-processing this week and I've been playing the happy housewife while school is out of session. So far our freezer has been filled with banana bread, bags and bags of pizza/pasta sauce, and lots of dairy free chocolate chip cookies. I've found the gym at our complex and the mailbox and we've even managed to leave the apartment, go out and about in Clarksville, and make it home without the use of our GPS systems.

Grant found some great painting reprints online and now we've got constant reminders of where we're from (and where we're returning to post-army life). The paintings are of Napa Valley, San Francisco and the Pacific Coast.

We got a bookshelf for the guest room and it helps hide all our cables that were all over the place!

And we finally hung the big painting on the wall!

Our first visitor comes a week from today!! I can't wait for Caroline to get here so we can show her Clarksville and catch up. I hate being so far away from everyone...Thankfully I'll have a two to one vote with her here for tv shows. Although with the Casey Anthony trial ending soon I am going to have to broaden my horizon.

Here's a picture of what our outside patio looks like! Just for you mom :) The days have been really hot and humid lately but the nights have been amazing. We've spent the past two nights eating dinner and sitting outside enjoying the warm weather!

One week until Caroline arrives!!!!!! We're off to Nashville tomorrow for an adventure!
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