Saturday, January 24, 2009

I am the Queen of England

I was skimming over some of my older posts, and, not surprisingly, the majority of them are all about Jane. For variety's sake, I thought I'd let you all know more about the rest of our lives.


Chris is currently taking 12 credits worth of classes at USU. It's his smallest courseload ever, that I know of. They are all higher level classes (except maybe racquetball...I'm not sure that counts...but he enjoys it). So far, things have not been too difficult for him. Hopefully it will stay that way during the semester, even after all the major homework assignments and huge tests.

All of the paperwork is turned in to the Air Force. Now we just wait to find out if he's accepted or not. We're fairly confident that everything will be fine--they have a 100% acceptance rate for his program for the last two years or four years or something. So we wait, but we're planning on it. I can't remember for sure when we find out. It's either February or June...or anytime inbetween, I guess.

A few weeks ago, Chris was called as the first counselor in the Elder's Quorum presidency in our ward. We go to a married student ward. We were just moved from a building about a mile from our house to the stake center, which is on the other side of town (15 minutes away, 10 on a good day). Quite a few couples in our ward decided the move wasn't worth the drive, so they've switched to the family ward. As a result, a lot of the ward is being reorganized. It's kind of fun, though, in my opinion. It's like a fresh start, and we're a part of everything from the "beginning."

Sorry, I strayed from the point. Chris was called in the EQ presidency. ... ... I thought I had more to say about that, but apparently I don't.

Day Care...

This is Jane-related, but she has no idea the drama that is involved in finding a place for her to stay while we are at work/school all day. We found a day care that we have been comfortable with since school started in August, but we have to leave. We are, unfortunately, losing our spot to a pregnant mother. Her maternity leave will be over in March and we have to be gone by then.

After a few weeks and several phone calls and appointments, we have finally found someone to watch Jane. It's everything we want on paper. She's close to our house (just on the other side of the golf course), she has a good house and yard for kids, she has a good daily routine. One of the best things is that she will charge only a $50 deposit to hold the spot for the summer while I'm out of school. Most places will only give you a small discount on the monthly rate, or they won't hold it at all unless you're paying the full price. So $50? Sweet.

The slightly funny thing is that her name is Laura.


I am still very excited to own a Wii. (I would like to mention one more time that it is mine, not ours. An important distinction :) ) Unfortunately, I have not actually enjoyed playing it as much as I would have liked. I've never been really into video or computer games, so I'm not very good at it. Most of the games I try are either way too hard so I get frustrated and quit really fast, or else they are very short arcade-type games and I get bored quickly doing the same thing over and over.

In an effort to find games that I will actually want to play, we have been trying out a few that belong to other people (thanks, Valerie, Mark and Bill). The favorite at the moment is Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I started playing it first and was doing really well. The problem was that we don't have a memory card, so we couldn't save. As long as we never turned it off, we could keep playing. That also meant that we couldn't play any other games. Since he couldn't switch games, Chris started playing on my Zelda game. There was one day I was gone for a few hours and he got way far into the game, far enough that I now don't know anything that's going on in the story or how to use any of the stuff he's picked up. So while we did find a game that I enjoy, I'm still not playing. Sigh.

We did buy Lego Star Wars 1 and 2 and we borrowed a memory card from Mark (thanks again). I'll have to try those out soon.

My School...

For those of you who don't remember, I teach fifth grade. There are a couple cool things happening in my classroom right now. One, an almost-complete Smart Classroom has been installed in my room. That includes a projection system and an audio enhancement system. I have a projector hooked up to my computer so I can do powerpoint, use the internet, etc. during lessons and have it all projected so my students can see. I also have a microphone that goes around my neck so I don't have to talk very loud and the students can all still hear me. Cool.

The whole thing is really cool, although I haven't actually done much with it yet. It was only installed on Thursday night. My computer isn't completely hooked up to it yet, so I can't use that, and I am terribly allergic to the strap for the microphone, so I can't wear it without very quickly getting a huge rash across the back of my neck.

So...I guess it isn't really cool yet. But it all has potential.

The other cool thing (that actually is cool) in my classroom right now is a colony. We are studying Colonial America, with all the events leading up to the Revolutionary War. To make it more engaging for the kids, we have created a colony. I am the Queen of England and they are all colonists subject to my rule. We have English Pounds that they can earn, and they all have different colonial jobs to earn the pounds. They are way into it.

Being what it is, there is a lot coming that my students don't know about yet. They will have to pay taxes, and if you remember anything about the colonial times, it's going to be A LOT of taxes. In their minds, I know that the whole colony thing will become much less cool really fast. But in my mind, I know that they will understand it and remember it a lot more than if we just read the textbook and did worksheets.

Every once in a while I try to make school interesting.

In Closing...

Courtesy of Jess:


Tannie Datwyler said...

I LOVE your post!! So fun to read. I did the same thing when I taught 5th grade (with the colonial) and I got my kids to chant "no more taxes" (they did it on their own after I taxed the dickens out of them). :) FUN! ONE of my positive moments from my first year teaching. . . I am soooo jealous of your SMART classroom by the way (I had the microphone in my room, but that is it).

Jared and Delia said...

I read every word. That was so fun.

You are a great teacher. I laughed about the strap. I am so sorry. Can you cover it in cotton?

That is sweet that you have a Wii. Have you guys tried guitar hero?

JeriLynn said...

Fun stuff! Can you teach your students about how the British tried taking all their guns away? I bet most Utahns would be okay with that.

Glad everyone's okay, and it's nice you are enjoying your reorganized ward!

Hulberts said...

Hey Laura! I'm glad you stopped by our blog. Thanks again for taking Mason, you're a lifesaver! Let me also say that Lego Star Wars on Xbox is the best game ever made! I hope that it is as fun on the Wii. Have fun playing!

Kym, Shaun and Riley said...

I can't believe that Jane is already over a year old! I love that you made the distinction between "mine" and "ours". I love the Wii. I wish we owned one, so I just play it when I go to visit my family.

Peter Shumway said...

That is deffinatley the coolest hair style I've seen all day