Tax Free Weekend

Well, I have to report to school tomorrow to start my school year. I need to be professionally developed for two weeks before the school year starts. Honestly, I think I need a few years of professional development, but that is a whole different story. I came to the realization that my summer was ending last Friday when I was making one million-billion copies, so I planned a fun weekend.


Saturday afternoon we all watched Guardians of the Galaxy in 3D.

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The movie was pretty good. I mean, basically it was The Avengers with different characters. It is rated PG-13 for fantasy violence and a few curse words. The violence was equal to Star Wars, nothing gross or bloody, just epic fighting battles. Evan and John David loved it, Aaron and I not so much. In all fairness, Aaron and I are not the types that enjoy action hero movies or sic-fi. There were some very funny parts, but I was ready to leave about an hour into the show.

After the movies, we headed over to Lowe’s.

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I needed to pick up some pots for the plants in my classroom. We found a nice set and also picked up some perlite to mix with soil from our compost pile. Don’t worry, I’ll have a post later this week about the table the plants sit on, so you’ll see them.

We allowed Evan and John David to pick dinner and they chose Red Lobster. Evan loves their shrimp.

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I’m not sure why Evan looks so sad in this picture. He said it was because John David was being annoying. Ah, brotherly love. After dinner, we headed home and crashed. Whew, a good day, but we had to rest for Sunday’s adventures.

Sunday, Aaron worked, so the boys and I went shopping with Mema! She wanted to buy the boys some clothes for school and it is Tax Free Weekend here in Arkansas. We started in North Little Rock at McCain Mall. JC Penney, Dilliard’s, and The Limited for me.

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After dragging the kids around the mall and their semi-good behavior, we treated them to Dippin’ Dots.

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We then headed across the river to Little Rock to Park Plaza mall. I needed to go to the Gap. I just had to have the new motorcycle quilted jacket to complete an outfit. I’m really proud of myself for being stylish. I’m going to look so cute in my teacher-y, non-running clothes ;)

Let me take a minute to express my gratitude for my Mother. She purchased 10 complete outfits for Evan and 8 for John David. She plans on purchasing 2 more for John David, so I don’t have to wash clothes but every two weeks. How awesome is that?

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Oh and these are all Nike, Under Armour, and Gap. I have two very well dressed kids and one super awesome Mom. She also ordered them monogrammed, matching backpacks and lunch boxes from LL Bean, AND my Dad took Evan to Walmart the other day and they picked up all of his school supplies. My kids are completely ready for school and I have not spent a dime. I have the most awesome parents on the planet.

Well, they know I am nervous about my new teaching job and they are trying to take all the other stressors in my life out of the equation. Like I said, I have the most awesome parents on the planet.

What did you do this past weekend?


A Little Sneak Peak {Wordless Wednesday}


Perfect July Day

First, if you want to read about the 50k I completed last weekend, go over to Maniac Mom and check out my recap.

Secondly, can you believe this awesome weather we are having!!! Wow, It feels marvelous outside! We went for a walk around the farm to check on all the animals, and we found that Maggie the Mule Colt is doing wonderful. She is so cute:

Maggie the Mule Colt


We also found an old apple tree that is producing this year:



We picked one, took a bite, and they are pretty sweet even though they are months away from being ripe. Hopefully we’ll get enough apples to make a pie this fall.

After our walk, we realized that we should take advantage of this weather as much as we could, so we loaded up the dogs and headed over to the Ross Foundation to explore. Mississippi always relaxes during the ride, but Marley has to see everything:



We really didn’t do much, but we did visit the old spring tap:



The water is so cold and tastes terrific. Honestly, I think this is where folks used to make moon shine, but I can’t prove it.

We rode around a bit longer and headed back to the house with the windows down. I love it when a cool spell hits in the middle of summer. I think this afternoon we’ll grill some burgers and sit on the front porch to watch the sun set.

Is the weather nice where you are? I hope you can get outside and enjoy the afternoon like we are!!!!!

It’s Official Official!

When I began applying for teaching positions, I bookmarked all the employment pages of the school districts I wanted to work for. I admit that I was very particular about this and only 8 districts made my list. Not only was I looking for a job for myself, I also had to consider the boy’s education. I wasn’t about to take just any job.

Remember what I posted on June 12th? I had pretty much given up mentally on this job search. I was ready to be an unpaid intern for next year, but God had a different plan.

A biology teaching position was posted at one of the districts on my list on June 16th, and I applied that day. I interviewed on June 19th and the Principle offered me the job on the spot (I later learned that 3 others interviewed for the position the day before). I was introduced to the Superintendent on June 23 and the School Board voted and approved my hire that night. Today, I signed my official contract and received my letter of hire.

What a whirlwind!!!!!!!

I am beyond excited. I will be teaching Biology, Pre-AP Biology, AP Biology, and Environmental Science. This is a very good school district with a great reputation.

Today, I also received all my keys:


Building Keys! Cabinet Keys! Chemical Closet Keys! Oh My!

I’ve been working on my lesson plans since day one, but now since I have my keys, I CAN DECORATE!!!

Here’s what I’m working with:

Front and Back of my Classroom

Front and Back of my Classroom

Right and Left Sides of my Classroom

Right and Left Sides of my Classroom

My Mom and I are going shopping tomorrow and I can’t wait to transform this room! I have so many ideas, but I need to win the lottery first. Did you know a skeleton of a chicken costs over $400? I already have two human skeletons, so I need some animals. For any future gifts you may want to buy me, a gift certificate to Carolina Biological will be great!

What was your high school biology teacher like? Did they do anything that was really awesome that I need to copy?

Just Relax {Wordless Wednesday}


LLCs, Kind Words, and Perfect Selfies {Weekly Random Recap}

Well, after almost three years of blogging, the IRS finally subscribed to my posts. Just kidding, they don’t care about my content, they just want me to pay my taxes correctly. I formed an LLC that can encompass everything I do now, and my future:


Speaking of everything I do now, here are two posts I have written recently: Dutch Oven Corn Bread for Taste Arkansas and Fishing with Dad for Only in Arkansas. Go check out both of them and tell me what you think.

Did you know there are “other” folders you can receive messages in on Facebook? Well, I didn’t. I found several messages, but this one really made me smile:


Isn’t that sweet! That was my first distance run after the big injury of 2013. I was so happy to be running again. I will never run past a struggling runner. During mile 21 of my very first marathon, a very sweet lady put her arm around me and whispered the encouragement that I needed to finish. I’m just glad I can help other runners cross the finish line. PRs are a worthless endeavor if you can’t stop and help someone.

Ok, here are two totally worthless, but fun, things I found on the internet this week. First is this website that you can put your birthday into and it tells you about things that happened during your lifetime.  It is a nice waste of 15 minutes.

Second, is the app Perfect365.  This is a free app that allows you to very easily edit your selfies. I didn’t think it would be that great, but I was wrong. Check out the subtle awesomeness:



My new phrase is going to be: Hold on, let me edit my selfie.

So anyway, I hope you’ve had a great week! Enjoy this Friday the 13th (always a lucky day for me) and the Honey Moon! Do you have any awesome plans this weekend? I’m running a race in North Little Rock and celebrating Father’s Day!

Finding Joy After Disappointment

I’ve half written this post several times. I wasn’t sure if I should share. I didn’t really know how to edit the words to make all of this sound pretty. Then I realized that life isn’t pretty, and I can be honest with you guys.


No, for real, I’m going to start sending my new resume out to folks. It can’t be worse than my real one lol. Get a biology degree they said, finding a teaching job will be easy they said. Lololololololololololol. Nope.

I’ve applied for every single secondary science teaching position within an hour of my house and I’ve been called for one interview. You see, I have to convince a school district to take a chance on me. I have no teaching experience. Well, I subbed for a semester, but that doesn’t really count. I know science; I’m smart; but I’m not a proven, effective teacher. Realistically, I’m a crap shoot.

Last Friday, after I was informed that I wasn’t selected for the only position I’ve interviewed for, I was disappointed. For some reason, I felt as if that job was my only chance. I’m entering graduate school this fall, and I have to either have a teaching job or an unpaid internship. I took a deep breath, decided I would just intern, and went shopping lol. I purchased myself a new iPhone 5s and it is a pretty neat distraction.

Saturday morning, I had to take the Physical Science Praxis II and I really wasn’t in the best mindset. I arrived at the test center early and reviewed my physics formulas one last time. During a rest, I saw a retweet from a huge religious icon that I don’t really like, but I reworded that tweet and made it my own:


I needed that. It made everything better. I took the test and I feel like I did well.

Since that day, I’ve enjoyed the present. Who cares if I’m an unpaid intern next school year, I’ll still be working towards my master’s degree. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still applying for every job that comes open. Two jobs were posted in my area today, and I applied. I want a job really bad, but I only want that job if it is a fit for me.

I don’t know. I guess I said all of that to say: I’m ok. I know everything will work out. I know the most awesome, perfect job is waiting for me. I may be teaching next year or I may have to wait another year. I know whenever the day comes, I’m going to be the best science teacher ever, but for now I’m going to focus on enjoying summer, stop worrying, and relax!

Mirror Mirror {Wordless Wednesday}


Pet Chickens…

Yesterday, when I arrived home from church I almost stepped on this little chick when I got out of the truck.


I couldn’t ignore the sweet little chirping, so I carried him in the house. I grabbed an old Rubbermaid tub and some moss (I couldn’t think of anything else) and made a little house in my living room. Aaron discovered what I was doing and went outside to try and find the hen that was sitting the nest this little guy came from. I was hoping we could reunite the family, but instead Aaron returned with 13 brothers and sisters and an unhatched egg. Oh my.


We placed the unhatched egg into the incubator and set up a heat lamp, automatic waterer, and feeder. The egg hatched this afternoon.

Now we have 15 baby chicks in our house. I know we live on a farm, but our chickens are a true natural selection experiment. The strongest survive without help from us. We’ve raised sheep and goats in our living room, but never birds! Oh my…

Let’s Catch Up


I have not posted in 15 days! Woah, sorry. The weather has been super and we have been playing, so let’s catch up with photos real fast!

We went to Family Farm, outside of Benton, and it was AWESOME! They have day camps during the summer and Evan will be attending this summer.





We have season passes to Magic Springs and we will be spending many days at the park this summer.


I passed the Praxis Core, so I’ve completed the first step of becoming a real teacher.


We had our dental check ups with Dr. Benton in Hot Springs. Dr. Benton is awesome, and will soon be my brother-in-law.


Evan got sick, but he was a champ.


I painted my nails neat-o again.


And a very awesome rainbow.


I’m also working on a little rebranding of myself. Hopefully, on July 13th my new blog will go live. I have to accomplish a major goal before I can use the domain name and feel comfortable. I’m designing it right now and I want it to be perfect. I will be moving all of my running stuff over there and keeping family stuff here. I think it will be a great move for me and you guys.  I know that some of you like my family and the rest of you like to read about my running escapades. I’m excited!