Thursday, December 31, 2015

366 Project recap and stats

   Anyone who has been following the blog for a while knows that my blog was named after a project I tried to attempt a few years ago. My goal was to send and receive 366 personal pieces of mail- 1 for every day of the year. (It was a leap year that year.) After failing a few times, I finally succeeded in my part of the goal (sending). Honestly, I stopped diligently keeping track of my sent mail after I hit 366 so there are a few more things that weren't counted. Here are the stats:

Sent mail

Letters: 71
Packages- 8
Postcards:171
Cards 128

Grand total- 378!!! Yeah! I told the woman at the post office that I finally met my goal. She laughed and said "On behalf of the US Postal Service.. I thank you for funding my job" 

Received Mail:

Letters: 27
Postcards:117
Cards:38
Packages:32

Grand total-214
     One of my friends once asked if I was disappointed that the mail in didn't always add up to the "mail out." Obviously I love getting mail but some things I have sent mail out for (like ChemoAngels, or a sympathy card or a note to a student), I do not expect any reply. The other issue is that I have been horrible with replying in a timely manner so I am not picky when people write back to me.The thing I'm most happy about is that all of these people have taken time to prepare mail for me specifically, whether it was a letter, a birthday card, a surprise package, etc. 



       In 2016 I will no longer try to send/receive 366 pieces of mail but I plan to keep writing... a lot. My personal goal for my writing is to respond to a letter in the same month that I get it. I'm still working on my reply pile from last year, but I'm hoping to get through is as soon as possible. I'm inspired to catch up. I also want to do better with sending things like birthday cards and Christmas cards. I'm horrible with that. (Most of my cards sent were letters written in a notecard form.)

      Do you have any writing related goals for 2016? What about any resolutions? 

      I hope that you have a wonderful 2016 full of peace and happiness. 




Friday, December 25, 2015

Timmy's Christmas gift to me

     Timmy decided to make my Christmas gift this year and I love it. What do you think?


    Can you see the little envelope on the snail shell? He's so cute.
    For all of my friends, I hope that you had a wonderful day and know that you are deeply loved. If any of my friends have not heard the good news of the gospel and would like to hear about Jesus, please feel free to reach out. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Christmas mail part 2

Somehow I missed a pile. I also have cards that were directly given to me, but all these are ones from the post!

 From Schoolbag in Germany.

 From Ieva in Lithuania. Cool stamp too
 Thanks Nastya in Russia! Love the music washi tape too.
 From darkpunkangel in Canada. Thanks!
 From Eris in Spain I love the design on the front.
 This card is reflective and very cute. It is from Nathalie in The Netherlands. I am enjoying your orange spice tea while I'm writing this! Thanks :)
 What a pretty card from Veronique in France. A an aside, Veronique also is the moderator for the Secret Christmas card swap so she is busy assigning people to send cards, updating hundreds of posts, etc. In addition to loving the card, I also appreciate the incredible amount of work she puts in just so a bunch of people who love the mail can wish each other a Merry Christmas from across the world. Much respect!
 From Alla in Russia. Look at the little birds!!!
 From my penpal Angie in MD! I am planning on catching up with all mail by New Years so keep an eye on your mailbox within the next few weeks.

This card from Germany is so elegant and beautiful. I also got a cool Christmas postmark. (Love the Santa washi too!) Thanks Corinna!

Christmas mail

     I know that it has been a while since I have updated. It has been busy with concert season and I have a broken wisdom tooth that has kept me in lots of pain. I wanted to share some of my beautiful Christmas mail with you. Most of these I have received from a Christmas card exchange through Postcrossing. I love seeing the different images from Christmas across the world. I'm still waiting for quite a few so I will post them when they come.

 From Nicole in Germany
 From Marina in Ukraine. How beautiful!!!!!
 And the stamps! Speaking of Ukraine- check out the ornament I just received from one of my Ukrainian students.

 From Nana, the woman who sparked my postal obsession :)
 From pumpkin1990 in China
 From my dentist :) (This is the most beautiful card!!! It would make any person who loves stationary/letter writing drool.)
 From some of our friends in town.
 From Alevtina in Russia
 From Matt's aunt and uncle
 From my sister
 From my friend Cheryl from church
 From Anna in Russia
 From my penpal Donna in Canada.
 From a friend of David's.
 From MitchS in the Philippines. It had some cute Christmas stamps too.
     This beautiful card is from a former student's family.
From Germany from desi-eich
From Germany (I believe from Samantha 21. Please correct me if I am wrong)

Monday, December 14, 2015

Snapshots of the life of a middle school music teacher

Random moments from 12/7-12/14

     Survived a concert I was nervous about. I went to set up, only to learn that our keyboard was broken. Spent 7 hours recording/processing accompaniment tracks. Trusted that the students could do it without hearing the tracks and having me at the piano. They did well and I was proud of them. We did have a fainter but things were okay.

    Yankee Swap with no tears or angry children. (I got a Dunkin' Donuts gift card.)


     I'm singing a song called Songs of the Wayfarer by Joseph M. Martin in chorus with my 7/8th graders. One of my 7th grade boys hung around after an audition toady to tell me that he was researching the song and jamming at his house to  some of the pieces I've introduced him to. Check out the versions he was listening to.
Ed SheeranJohnny CashEmmylou Harris, Jack White and the Swingle Singers 
This also led to a conversation about why the lyrics changed from person to person, history of the song, and his opinions on the versions he heard. Music teacher win :) Which version did you like best?   If I've sparked your inner nerd, check out the history of the song and more versions here. 

        I straightened my hair this morning and wore makeup. 1 boy was confused and seemed to genuinely need an explanation to why I was wearing lipstick. 1 boy thought I was a substitute. Multiple students did not recognize me. A few students came in to tell me that I "look pretty." My favorite awkward moment was where one girl came in and said "Oh my gosh! I love your hair and your face!" Ummm... thanks?  (That's also when the boy realized I wasn't a substitute teacher)


      This week my students took recycled materials and made them into instruments. I have loved watching their creativity. They also composed a piece for their instruments, wrote down the music in non-traditional notation and had to learn someone else's piece. Multiple students have asked me to stay in class "for the rest of the day" or "through lunch."

      Auditions for my Chorale- so cool to hear each kid sing on their own. I'm glad so many kids are coming to try out. One of my 6th graders mentioned that he "doesn't care if he has to crush the heart of a 5th grader, he wants to make spring Chorale." The funny thing is that this boy is a kid who works hard but I couldn't tell if he actually enjoyed being there. I say auditions are cool but it's always hard when the list goes up since not everyone is accepted.

    I have received 3 videos from 2 7th grade girls who are kind of hilarious. The first one was a parody of Adele's "Hello."  The second was a bizarre, rap-like holiday video and the 3rd was a video about "Christmas Crumble."

 
     Had a kid who is considered to be "one of the worst behaved 5th graders" tell me that he was really excited because he went shopping for his Christmas tree and for presents. He was excited that his mom let him pick out a present for me. :)

     My son came to school with me on a day his school had conferences. He sat in all of my classes, took 3 quizzes, compared and contrasted West African vocal/instrumental music, watched my 8th grade operas and sang in my 6th grade chorus. He's in 4th grade. My kids (the students) were really welcoming and cute. They shared music, chatted, and included him in all the lessons. It was heartwarming.

     After bugging me to play Christmas music during class (in a highly Jewish community), I played a recording of the Christmas concert I played in last weekend. After initially complaining that he wanted to hear some "Bill Cosby.. no, wait, Bill CROSBY" (facepalm) a 6th grade boy said "Wait? Is this live?" Me- "Well, it was taped live, yes." Boy- "Woah.. you guys are like legit musicians! That sounds like what the real song sounds like." Me- "Uh... that's because we ARE all legit musicians."  Glad Tchaikovsky wasn't rolling in his grave though, thanks.

     I seriously wish I could post pictures with their facial expressions too. Good times.

   



   

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Guess what?




I DID IT!!!!!! 

     After 3 years, I have completed my goal of sending out at least 1 personal piece of mail for every day of the year (plus 1 since I started the project on a leap year so my goal was 366)!!! I know I'm nerdy to be excited about this. but it was a lot of work and I really tried this year. It was my original goal to send and receive 366 pieces, but the incoming mail is beyond my control. (I'm at about 170- feel free to mail me 190 things in December. I would be ecstatic and shocked to complete my entire goal.)

     So, what's next year's goal? Penpals, you're going to love this. I would like to respond to every letter that I get in the same month I receive it. No more waiting for letters. I appreciate all of you who have stuck with me when I've been busy, crazy or buried in school work. This is my goal for next year. 

    I participated in a Christmas card round robin. I will post all of my cool international cards when they come in. 

Friday, November 27, 2015

Thanksgiving Tree part 2

     So, I finished my tree. I don't think it was quite as impactful as last year but I'm hoping it brightened someone's day. In one major snafu, I was supposed to get some bulletin board paper from the art teacher so I could put up the tree trunk and branches. She was absent all last week so I ended up just taping an outline on the wall. The kids got the idea, but it looked pretty lame.
      Instead of writing a lot about the tree, let me tell you about a moment I was thankful for. I have this 7th grade student, Maddie, who is such a sweet kid. She had e-mailed me for something at 5 pm on Tuesday and I told her that I was working on something and would need to get back to her later. She asked if I was still at school and I replied that I was. She e-mailed me again at 6. I jokingly asked if she thought anyone would mind if I slept over at the school.
     On Tuesday I worked on my leaf project from about 6am-7:50, 10:40-12:05, 3:30-6 and then from 7-1:45. Then I finally finished. I went into work early on Wed so I could tape the leaves up. At 7:30, I got a knock on my classroom door. I called for whoever it was to come in and it was Maddie. When she turned the corner and saw what I was doing, she smiled and said "Ah.. that's what you were up to yesterday." I laughed and told her that I was almost done, that I just needed to tape the leaves up. She offered to help and handed me something. "Here, we made a chocolate raspberry coffee cake for breakfast today. I knew you were working hard last night and wondered if you may have skipped breakfast." (Which I had)
     Sometimes it's the kind little things like that that make teaching so worth it.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Thanksgiving tree part 1

   So some of my penpals have asked me to write here about my Thanksgiving project that I did last year and have decided to do again this year. Last year, I was very close to the 8th grade class. In October of last year, it was obvious that  many of the kids were struggling with anxiety and there was an incident that happened with one of our students that really affected a lot of kids. I knew that these kids really respected me and I knew that my words had power to heal and to show love. So, I decided to make a big tree in my room with a leaf for each student who sang for me. I painted/ printed/doodled, etc each leaf by hand. Then I wrote them all a sincere note on the back about why I appreciated them and my hopes for them. I hung them up in my room on a large "tree" (hey, it's the thought that counts right?).  This is what it looked like. I think some people had already taken their leaf. (It was about 8 feet high and 8 feet wide.)


     I called the kids to come up and get their leaf on the day before Thanksgiving. Many of my 8th graders were smart enough to know that each leaf was different and that each person had a note, which was also different. Thankfully, nobody (well... 2 girls- which out of a few hundred wasn't bad.) sat and compared notes.
     About a month ago a little boy, who is now in 6th grade, told me that I am "the most considerate person he knows" because of this tree project. I was really humbled and since then many other students have commented about how they still have their leaves in their binders, their bedrooms or framed. I decided to do the project again this year.
    I have been diligently making leaves and writing notes. I'm finished 5th-8th grade up to the Es. I have a long way to go. I'm hoping that at least 1 kid really needs to hear the words I write to them.
     THANK YOU SARAH! I have been using a gelli print on the leaf cutouts you made me. When I put up the picture of this year's tree I want you to know that all the maple leaves are the ones you made me. Thank you!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Fall Sunset

     Today had a few small treats for me. At church, my friend's 4 month old son leaned over and reached for me. I picked him up and he alternated between cuddling me and jumping up and down with the cutest smile I have seen in a while. Then he proceeded to snuggle up against me and fall asleep. There are not many more calming, peaceful things than a sweet, innocent baby sleeping soundly on you. <3 <3
     Then, a few minutes ago I looked out the window and saw the whole sky in this pinkish hue. I grabbed my camera and grabbed these pictures. It is not uncommon to see this on one side of the house, but today the entire sky was like this for about 5 minutes. Beautiful. I love that huge tree across the street.




Thursday, November 12, 2015

Facebook Follow-up

     Almost a month ago I posted about giving up Facebook. I have almost completed my month so I thought I'd share my thoughts.

      Surprisingly, I have not really missed it, nor have I been tempted to log on. I have noticed that I have had more time to get things done, but I have also noticed that I have not used that time to do too much. I have gotten more sleep and allowed myself more rest. (This could also be because I haven't been feeling well.) I wish I could say that I was super motivated and have accomplished a ton of things but I can't.
     I have checked in once or twice because someone I usually don't get messages from has sent me one. I have also logged on accidentally while clicking on links in e-mails from a company, etc. and it has brought me to Facebook. I have had multiple notifications that I have ignored and I have reminded many friends that I haven't been online. I have also had a few people tell me that they were going to reach out or send me a message, but then they didn't because they knew I would not get it. I have missed the convenient connections.
      I have also missed seeing pictures on Halloween or being notified of birthdays.
      I have not missed memes, complaining, sharing some of my own things, and stupid games. I thought I would be more lonely. I have not noticed a difference.
     I have made an effort to get together with some people and to reach out to people I haven't seen in a while. I think I'm destined to be the one who always has this role...which I don't like all the time.

    I think after the month, I will log in, check my close to 1000 notifications (seriously. I'll just check tags, messages and pics) and then keep it activated but not check it as often. I may also turn off notifications on my cell phone.
     If you are one of my friends who have also given up Facebook temporarily, how is it going for you?
 
   

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical

    After I attended Cinderella, a friend of mine offered to treat me to see the musical Beautiful, which tells the story of Carole King.

    To be 100% honest, I wasn't super excited about seeing the musical. I had heard some of the songs Carole King had sung, but I wasn't that familiar with her. On the other hand, I don't dislike her and didn't really have any reason not to see it. It was one of those situations where I would never have bought a ticket, but since someone was treating me, I didn't mind going. I'm so glad I did!
     First of all, how often does someone offer to treat you to a musical? So, thanks Robin if you are reading this! Secondly, I knew almost ALL of the pieces. I had heard the songs Carole had sung but I had no idea how much music she has written that was performed by other musicians. (As a music teacher, it was nice to be reminded of how the industry worked at that time and to put some connections together that I hadn't made before.) Third, I enjoyed learning about Carole King's life. I will probably research a little more into the lives of some of the characters. Lastly, the cast was INCREDIBLE! I don't think I had seen any of them in other shows but I will definitely keep my ears and eyes open for future shows these people are in.
     If you have a chance to catch it in Boston before Sunday, try to check it out. If not, the next 3 cities are Minneapolis, Chicago and St. Louis.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Sweet moments of the week- and Halloween question

    - I began working on my Thanksgiving tree project. My sister-in-law, Sarah, just sent me a bunch of leaf cut outs that I can decorate. Thanks, Sarah!
   - I wrote a few parents to tell them how much I enjoy having their children in my class. I received some great responses, even though they didn't need to write back.
    - A 5th grade girl made me a cute little ghost cupcake. Kind of like these, but the ghost was a folded piece of fondant, covered in more fondant. This little girl is one of the nicest kids. (She wore this costume:  to school today with a little painted pink nose and whiskers.)
     - I also saw a baby (inflatable) sumo wrestler costume, Justin Bieber, a bumble bee, a cowgirl, lots of superheroes, Waldo, etc. There were no super gross or sexy costumes. It was refreshing.
     -Helped a good friend who is going through a hard time
     - Played a few duets with Timmy while he was practicing trumpet. (I played recorder. It was torture for my music teacher ears, but it was fun. Timmy is doing great.)
      - Played some board games with David
      -Helped Tim on a book report
     - Watched Amazing Race with the kids tonight. Now they both want to try bungee jumping.
     -Talked to the boys about some new activities that neither of them have tried before. It will be interesting to see if they like them or not.
       -Matt made these Rolo Cheesecake Bars:
ROLO CHEESECAKE BARS. Recipe Oh my gosh. This is the picture and recipe from Just a Pinch Recipes. Holy cow are they tasty!

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Tomorrow is Halloween. My students asked me today which countries currently celebrate Halloween. If you are reading from outside of the US, can you tell me if Halloween in celebrated in your country? If so, what do people do on Halloween?  For our family it's a time to dress up, go trick or treating and eat candy, but that's pretty much it.
     I'd love to talk to them about it on Monday.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Currently 10/24

Watching:

     
     It has become a new tradition on Friday nights to watch Amazing Race with the boys. We have enjoyed snuggling on the couch and watching the places where they travel. Timmy mentioned yesterday that he would want to try ziplining or bungee jumping after watching this week's episode. David likes the snacks. 3 weeks ago, we ordered potato skins from a restaurant down the street, 2 weeks was popcorn and last night was a salty snack mix. I enjoy listening to what the boys think of each team and how they process the challenges they are facing. It's interesting to me to see what kinds of attitudes bother the boys and which ones they don't see a problem with. (Neither boy are fans of the cheerleaders, sorry ladies. Timmy's favorite team are Josh and Tanner, above. David's favorite team are Cindy and Rick.)

Reading:

   I entered to win this book in November of last year on Goodreads. I lost but Bill Harrison, the author (and the person who was stuck on the raft), e-mailed me and asked if I would like a copy of the e-book. I finally got around to reading it. Basically, he was serving in the Navy during WWII and after the war officially ended, his ship was sent to clear the waters. They ended up in a tsunami and the boat sunk. He and 8 other soldiers ended up making it onto a life raft. This books tells the story of their 6 days they spent adrift without food and water. Most people who know me well know that I am not a huge fan of the ocean. (Looking at it, yes; being in it, no.) I can't imagine how terrifying it would be to spend 6 days in the middle of the ocean (even on a giant ship. lol), never mind without supplies  or food and surrounded by sharks. Bill tells of how his faith affected his experience and of the faithfulness of God. I really enjoyed this book and his perspective on life in general. He would be a person I would really like to have coffee with someday. 
      I don't know what I'm reading next. (I have a system so I'll know tonight!)

Listening:

    To the Holy Spirit. Ever get a nagging feeling that something is just not the way it should be?  Changing some things I have been noticing lately. Right now I am working on some easy things. I'm planning on tackling some less comfortable things within the month. 

Making:

Cupcakes and new friends. I'm going to take advantage of this cold day to make some chocolate cupcakes. I haven't baked in a while- just simple, plain cupcakes but I'm sure we'll enjoy them. 
     Today I had breakfast with a group of ladies; some whom I have hung out with before and some new friends. I really enjoyed myself and I'm glad that I "put myself out there" when I invited some acquaintances that I didn't know very well. 
     I've been making some backgrounds for my leaf project too. 

Feeling:

     Good. I'm glad that I made the decision to take a break from Facebook. Not missing it at all yet and seriously considering logging on at the end of the month, downloading all my pictures and deactivating. I do love when I log on and reconnect with someone, so maybe I will keep the account but only log on every month or so to update any new friends with contact info. I'll see at the end of the month. 
      This may sound weird, but I feel like I'm FEELING more in general. I'm trying to eliminate some distractions and pay attention to life in general. I mentioned that I wanted to connect more and I feel like that's happening. I found myself really paying attention to what I'm saying/writing to people as well as taking time to relax and listen to other people more. Slowing down is taking a bit of effort but I'm happy for the opportunity.  A friend of mine mentioned she missed playing with me in a concert band I used to be in. I may have time to join it again. I LOVE Christmas concerts and I may consider joining again. 

Planning:

  Last year I did a huge project for my students at Thanksgiving. I made a large tree, and handpainted/designed a leaf for each student who sang for me. On the back, I wrote them each a personal message. It was really impactful to them and to me. I'm starting early so I can sleep that week. :) (Anyone want to cut out leaf shaped for me? Lol. Better yet, anyone have a cricut with lots of leaf cut outs?)
      I'm planning to get at least a few letters done this weekend and to get caught up on my mail log. I'll update the project soon. I think I'm going to hit my "outgoing mail" goal this year. Then what? (Still sadly behind on incoming)

Loving:

I love that the weather is getting cooler. The leaves are beautiful here and the brisk air makes me feel alive. I also rarely get sunburned in the fall, which doesn't mean it NEVER happens. I love enjoying a hot cup of tea or hot chocolate, fire pits, hanging a throw on the couch for chilly nights, hot dinners, etc. I really love Christmas too so, even though I get aggravated at early advertising, I have to admit that I am looking forward to the holidays this year.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Taking a break

   One day last week I was driving to work and felt like a million thoughts were rushing around in my brain. I felt distracted and anxious as I mentally prepared for the average work day ahead of me. There was nothing out of the ordinary going on that day so why was I so worried? I turned off the radio and felt slightly calmer but still stressed. I spent the rest of the drive in prayer, asking God to reveal some of my "issues" to me during the day,
     Here are some of my thoughts:
- I have been uninvested lately because a few things are out of balance. I'm not sure which adjustment will put things back in balance but I cannot continue on "same old, same old"
- I waste a lot of time. I'm blaming Facebook in this case because I come home, check e-mail, log on, play a game or two, catch up in the lives of all of my "friends," etc. The real thing I'm doing is taking a mental break and not thinking.
- I will find the time I "need" or "don't have" if I stop wasting time.
- Filling up empty time with new tasks I don't enjoy will not help.  I need to prioritize and to spend more "doing nothing" time with my kids.
- Perhaps one of the harder lessons I've been learning is that I've given up on some of my goals. I don't think I've forgotten goals, I think I'm struggling with the fact that I'm going in a different direction than many people around me. I don't know if I have changed or what, but I find myself less connected with people I was close friends with previously.

     All these things reminded me of a time when I just graduated college. I was getting these incredible headaches all the time and I went to get it checked out. I asked the doctor if I had super sensitive hearing or if there was something wrong. She said that she didn't think anything was wrong, but perhaps my training as a musician was affecting the way I process things. She explained that most people, if they were in a cafeteria or restaurant would just be paying attention to/hearing the conversation with the person they were talking to. I will hear that conversation, the noise of all the rest of the restaurant, and if I want to- the individual conversations of anyone anywhere in the room. I do not block out sound. I can, if I'm focusing on one, but normally there's a whole lot of sensory input.
     Normally, I thrive on energetic, busy, lots going on situations- but I think lately it has been draining. I am paying attention to everything at the same time and not turning off the voices I don't need to be hearing. (I am also not paying proper attention all the time to the people I should be listening to, honestly.)  It just makes me feel like I'm going crazy. So, I've decided to cut back on some "noise" in life by leaving Facebook for a month to see if it makes a difference.
     I love Facebook because it keeps me in touch with many, many people that I don't see often. It introduces me to new ideas from some of the penpalling and art groups I'm in. I can see daily events from friends who live far away or get prayer requests for immediate needs. I learn new things about people that I don't know well, like what they like to do or what their holidays are like. I see new places of the world. But, I also waste time. I get annoyed with people who are friends but constantly being aggressive about certain topics. I follow interesting articles and keep linking to other interesting things. I am connected to people who "friended" me but don't give me the time of day in real life, I have unfollowed people who obsessively post about every aspect of life or everything they have ever thought is worth sharing (cat pictures anyone?) and then I feel guilty about it. So, I'm taking a break.  Will I feel completely disconnected and out of touch? Probably.
      Here's what I'm nervous about- will I feel more lonely? I probably will, which brings me to another problem. Why, when we are "connected" to people on the internet, do we feel like we are included? Have friendships degraded so much that a "like" on a picture means more than a phone call? Are you really friends at all if the only contact you have is online? Does sharing glimpses of your every day life make people actually care about what is going on? I have been reading articles about "extending your influence." I have determined that I don't want to extend my influence. God put me here in my life for a purpose and I don't think that He intended for me to be blogging to thousands of people or always being part of a large group. I think that's part of what I like about penpalling. Every letter I write is designed just for that 1 person after I have intensely listened to their thoughts, processed what I want to say and responded. Maybe you are reading because you're one of the people I'm supposed to somehow make a connection with.  I'm sure I will notice a huge drop in correspondences when I'm not online- out of sight out of mind, you know? However, I'm sure I will also catch up with some people who make an effort to stay in touch. I will reevaluate Facebook after the month. I think I really will miss celebrating with people about the good times in life and being reminded of everybody's birthday. lol.
     I desire more relationships that are two-way, genuine, personal friendships. I desire to make the most of my time and to make a difference.  I wish to give myself more fully to things I feel I have been called for. I want to take more responsibility with some things I'm always procrastinating doing that should be done.  It's okay to not fit into expectations that others have set for me if they do not line up with what I feel God wants from me. All of this is not saying that I don't need to change at all to accomplish what I'm looking for. I definitely need to and I have not been a great friend to a few people I can think of off the top of my head. I just need a reboot. So, please feel free to reach out with a comment, phone call, postcard, or letter this month. I will keep you updated on how things are going.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Fall pictures from this weekend

I love autumn. I have spent a lot of time outside in the past few days. Yesterday I attended a local fair and today was so beautiful that I just kept going outside. These pictures are not the highest quality but they show what it looks like around here lately. Looking over these pictures, I feel like I had the camera on the wrong setting. The colors looked a lot more vibrant in person. Guess you'll have to come visit me in MA if you want the real thing!

 This row of aliens just made me laugh.
 You know what else made me laugh? This man with a Minecraft sword. Matt couldn't believe I snuck a picture. Seriously though, when am I going to see this again?




 Tim tried his hand at riding a mechanical bull. He did pretty well. He's concentrating very hard as you can tell by his tongue hanging out in almost every picture. (Which is also why that cut on the side of his lip won't heal.. )








 Pretty scarves
 Animals at the fair


 I loved this cute little goat

 Eating the paint? Surely the hay isn't THAT bad.
 Sand sculpture.
 Displays outside the flower building done by a local nursery.


 Inside the flower building.
 Look at these amazing flowers and displays. I am not usually one to insist upon getting expensive flowers, but you have to admit these are beautiful. (If you insist on buying me expensive flowers, I have recently come across this site. How beautiful are those!?)






 There was a really cool bird with this bird but I couldn't get a good picture.

 This painting was done by a friend of mine. I just took a picture of it because I was proud of her. Way to go Judi!!!

 Outside my house this afternoon



Pictures from a walk with Timmy.