Thursday, May 28, 2009

Gratitude Friday

Good morning! I'm still up on Thursday night so by the time I have my list done, it'll be Friday. Grab a cup of freshly roasted coffee (exclusively roasted for you by the Duke), a yummy blueberry muffin and think about you're thankful for. Here's my list:

1. things and events that continually make me go "hmmm." Been thinking a lot and it's good to evaluate of where I've been, where I'm at and where I'm headed. If you have my map, let me know because I sometimes I just don't know anymore!

This came through my email this morning. A definite "think about!" The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly; it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. 'Tis the business of little minds to shrink; but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death. - Thomas Paine
2. lilacs and their amazing fragrance! Yankee Candles has gotten close to bottling the smell in their candles, but nothing can replace the smell of fresh lilacs. I can press my nose into my three bushes forever. I'll be sad when the flowers are gone.

3. my kids! Ian turned 22 this week. We visited Jen's house this past weekend and got to meet Brad, the new love! It's fun getting to know them as adults and seeing their individual differences. (This picture is from a year ago when we had the Duke's Air Force retirement ceremony. BONUS GRATITUDE: I'm 20 pounds lighter now than in this photo!)

4. Mt. Hood. The mountain in Oregon was BEAUTIFUL when we were driving to my uncle's house. I could have stared at it all day long. I really love the ocean, but mountains are becoming some of my favorite things, too.

5. my cousin Gigi. Will you please pray for her? She has thyroid cancer and it's continuing to spread, despite her thyroid was taken out a few years ago. I love her tons and I'm very glad she's part of my life. We weren't able to spend much time together growing up so we're trying to make up for lost time. I can't wait to go to Long Beach, WA with her in July! She also has three cool is that? "arrrrroooooo!"

Share with everyone what you're thankful for this morning! It's 5:18 Pacific Time and I'm checking to see if I have a morning teaching job. I am also thankful I get to go back to bed for a few hours! However, if you still have coffee in your cup or would like a refill, Company Girl Coffee is the place to be! Head on over there, meet my friends and check out Rachel's newest & the most beautiful project of Company Girl. You'll be blessed! Have a great week~

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Happy 22nd birthday, Ian!

So many wonderful memories of the 22 years you've been in our family -- wishing you a wonderful birthday today and many great years to follow! Remember Who you represent, remember Rule #1 (Don't be an idiot!) and know that you are loved lots, always!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Sister, sister!

I am happy to introduce my two sisters to you!! This is the first time that all three of us have EVER been together. Tammy, Mattie and I have never lived together and only have met each other about four times. Our paths only cross when our dad brings one of us to meet the other. The first time I met Tammy (left side of picture) was when I was pregnant with Ian (22 yrs ago!) The first time I met Mattie (right side of picture) was when he brought her to Germany and she was about 2 1/2 yrs old. (She's now 19!) This picture will be treasured FOREVER because it's the first time we've ever been photographed together. Amazing, huh?

We have a very interesting history between all of us but I'm so glad that we got to be together at the Hescock family reunion this weekend! Stay tuned for more great pictures of our family.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Gratitude Friday (on Saturday)

Good morning! Grab a cup of coffee and share your gratitude list with me.

1. My friend Rachel is putting together a book all about girlfriends! I was looking at some of the photo entries this morning and realized how much I miss getting together with my many girlfriends. Why is there never time to get together or even just touch base via email, a phone call or snail mail? I'm going to have to fix that. I want more pictures of you all, esp since I lost my camera. Ok, hop over to Rachel's website and look at the photos I entered. If you have some amazing girlfriend photos you'd like to submit, go for it! Voting is going to take place after June 7th. (The photo below is from my birthday last yr!)

2. sunshine in the beautiful Pacific NW! Blue skies, warm temps and the purple lilacs blooming! Only thing that could be better...we could be camping this weekend!! sigh...
3. great days of guest teaching -- no kindergarten, either! I'm still searching diligently for a full time teaching job but know I am blessed with the amazing guest teaching jobs I've had this year. I'll be kind of sad when school gets out in a few weeks.

4. a new Starbucks that opened up on Fairchild AFB!

5. size 10 capris are too big...I bought some last night at Costco and I got them home to realize that they didn't fit. Back they went! So it was great incentive to go to the gym last night to walk/run five miles. Plus I got to watch the Seattle Mariners vs San Francisco Giants. I stopped my exercise after the 7th inning. I would have been there FOREVER since they went into the 12th inning with Seattle winning 2-1 (WOOHOO!) My secrets for continued weight loss and inches -- eating breakfast every morning, taking meds that help my body do what it's supposed to do instead of gaining more weight, lots of different types of exercise, almost zero sugar (including soda pop and only a smidge of chocolate) and try to not eat after 7 pm. It works for me!

Have a great weekend! The York family is headed to the Mt. Hood area tomorrow to attend a family reunion on my dad's side. It could be interesting. I love seeing my cousin Gigi who also has 2 beagles so just being with her will be worth the trip!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Siesta Scripture Memory Team

As I was getting ready for the day, I was thinking about the song "beauty for ashes" and decided to look up the verse that goes with it. I think I will memorize Isaiah 61:3 as it reminds me to get out of the blue funk!

"To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the Lord has planted for his own glory." Isaiah 61:3

It's a beautiful day in the Pacific Northwest! I'm headed this morning to teach 2nd grade at Fairchild AFB...two days in the same classroom. How fun! Yesterday's job was with 1st and 2nd graders -- a wonderful day with those kiddos! I love being able to go into different classes in different schools and in different school districts -- and just being able to give 200% of myself to each class!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

A Slow Day...

It's nice to be at home today and just be able to read & nap! Mr. Sunshine isn't out playing and although I had an option to teach this afternoon, I've got some projects to get finished inside the house.

I heard back from the president of Quality Schools International (where the kindergarten teaching position was posted) and the job had been filled on Saturday. However, he gave great encouragement to me and through a series of emails, we'll be meeting this summer in Spokane for an interview!! WOOHOOO~ When I told him that the Duke is going back to school to get his teaching certificate in High School Science, he said they love to hire married couples to teach in their schools. Who knows, perhaps in the next few years, the Yorks could be teaching overseas somewhere!!

In the meantime, I'm continuing to search for teaching jobs. I found one in Walla Walla but definitely need to go back to school to become proficient in Spanish (it's a dual language elementary teacher position). There's also a lot of openings in Montana (thanks, Montana girlfriends!) but I've got to see how the Montana certification sysytem works & figure out how to get fingerprinted through their OPI. Wonder if I have to take a trip over to Missoula to get it all taken care of.

Time to find something to nibble on. The Beagle Boys and I will go on a walk later this afternoon!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Applying for teaching jobs!

After learning that teaching jobs in WA will be very hard to obtain til there's money in the budgets once again, I've started applying in other states and countries! yes....COUNTRIES!! Today I applied for a kindergarten position through Quality Schools International. This job position is located in the Ukraine. While it's scary to have to think about being away from Spokane and my family, I need to be in a full time teaching job. I'm not sure if this is the right decision to be out of the country (didn't I think Grand Coulee and Nespelem was a bit of a commute last yr?) But I think I'm up for the challenge and to gain the valuable teaching experience needed to continue being a teacher of excellence.

If you know of teaching positions in your area (whether in the US or out of the country!), please let me know! I'm a Washington certified K-8 teacher, willing to be in a public, private and/or international school. Guest teaching is a very important role but I'm ready to be back in the classroom full time!! My love of teaching has become addictive~

"If I give the best of me, that becomes my legacy!" (from Mercy Me's Blink of An Eye)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Half Marathon Results

Today's half marathon was a great race! Following the beautiful Spokane River, it was a fairly flat course. I finished in 2:51. I am very happy with the time since I'd finished my last half marathon in 3:30. I'm learning that I really need to have Gatorade or something similar in my system very early in the race so my right leg doesn't go weird on me at Mile 5. Those electolytes are definitely important! I tend to start out slow and then pick up speed towards the end, too. We'll see how the next race goes as I change a few things around.
My afternoon nap of 3 hours was longer than my race! I enjoyed every minute of it and woke up feeling quite refreshed & not so sore. Some people say I wasted a gorgeous afternoon here by sleeping but the nap was a great recharger for me. Tomorrow I'll do a short run for recovery! Then it's back to training for the Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon in June.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Gratitude Friday

It's a beautiful morning in the Pacific Northwest! I took the Beagle Boys out for a walk this morning and we all got to enjoy the sunshine before we go our separate ways (I'm teaching Kindergarten and Third grade today, the boys are going into their crate for the day!)
Grab a mug of coffee or tea and join me in Gratitude Friday~

1. meeting up with Rachel in Ft. Worth!! It was definitely a treat to meet up with a girlfriend after 32 years of not seeing each other. We had a blast re-connecting.

My list is short this morning. I fell into a blue funk last night and it's time for an attitude change on my part.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Totally Bummed!

I lost my camera between Seattle and Spokane...with HUNDREDS of pictures on the card! The latest pictures were of Lisa and I at the Buffalo Boogie, Rachel and I meeting for the first time after 32 years and amazing photos of Puget Sound at sunset! The earliest pictures were of the puppies when they were just a few days old.

I've called Alaska Airlines to see if it had been turned in from the airplane I'd been on...nope. I've called the Seattle Airport Police to see if it'd been turned in at their call back from them. I had the camera while I was eating dinner because I was looking at the super duper shots of Puget Sound, Lake Washington, the sunset and Mt Rainier....very spectacular shots! My table was totally cleared off when I threw my dinner plate away so I know I didn't leave it on the table. Where did it go?!? I had two hours of waiting in the N terminal and know I charged my cell phone while I was watching TV. Did the camera slip out of the backpack without me knowing?

Super big sigh.....

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day!

May you have a wonderful day of being pampered!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Gratitude Friday on Saturday!

Due to flying out of Spokane early Friday morning, I didn't get a chance to do my gratitude list! So here it is for today -- iced tea is being served so you can grab a glass full of ice, fill it up with the iced tea, sip on it and enjoy the beautiful TX weather in "our" backyard. (Thanks, Lisa!)

1. all of the special ladies in my life who have been a mom figure to me over the years! I've had great positive role models and I've learned a lot to get me to where I am today. I am truly blessed!

2. naps! On the plane between Seattle and Dallas/Ft Worth & even a nap today. They really re-energize me and I love my naps.

3. Starbucks in airports! Happy sigh...need I say more?

4. a wonderful week of teaching with amazing kids!

5. the ability to run/walk in the Buffalo Boogie this morning. The weather was in the mid 70's with a light mist, making for great conditions. I felt great and managed to pull off a 36:22 race time. Not bad for the last mile being a gradual uphill.

6. and, last but not least, Lisa! She who continually loves me just the way I am, shares her air miles with me so I can come have a girl's weekend and knows when life has its ups & downs for me and takes appropriate action. Thanks for being a friend all these years since we lived in Germany!

PS Stay tuned for more as I meet Rachel Anne this weekend! :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Being a positive part of little lives... something I LOVE to be a part of! The last few days I've had a different type of assignment for guest teaching. I'm at one school, but only in a classroom for 30 minutes at a time. The teachers are meeting with the principal one on one so I've got the kids while they're meeting. It might not work for some guest teachers to be this type of "sub" but I've loved it! On Tuesday, I was a part of at least 200 students' lives! (9 classes, I think!) Today it's 7 classes, including PE. WOOHOO! It is fun to go in to see what the students are doing, teach a quick mini-lesson or just keep everyone on track. (sometimes easier said than done but always accomplished with my big bag of many tricks.)

If I can't get a full time teaching job here in Spokane, at least I have schools where I am loved as a guest teacher and that in itself speaks a multitude of love and respect for my profession as an educator!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Pack ONE suitcase!

Very early Friday morning I leave for Dallas/Ft. Worth to see not only my very good friend Lisa but I get to re-meet Rachael Anne! I'm starting to get the travel bug tonight & want to get the suitcase out. Hmm, puppies would probably help me in this endeavor so I think I'll wait til tomorrow afternoon when I have more time.

What to pack? Running clothes and shoes for the Buffalo Boogie, comfy clothes for just lounging around with friends, perhaps the new fun dress I got a few weeks ago. What else? We're talking four days including travel, one larger type of carryon bag. What would be in your suitcase?
ps... Don't worry, Lisa! The curry ketchup is on the top of the piano waiting for first class placement into the suitcase tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The Doghouse...

Quick note before I head to bed:
Beagle Boys and husband -- all in doghouses! Need I say more of my mood right now? Lucky for all of them we don't have a doghouse like the one of the right!

I am more than ready for my four day weekend in TX!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Train Your Spirit!

I was going to title this post "Press on for the prize", which reminds me to keep looking forward, keep focused and don't stop! I started looking around my creatively organized office (aka messy!) to see if I could locate a Bible to look up the actual verse. I didn't see one at first or second glance, but my new devotional book was sitting on the ironing board. (Those ironing boards work for great little side tables!)

Having gotten sidetracked already from typing this post, I decided to look up and see what today's devotion is all about. AMAZING how God sends us little nuggets of truth in different form. "Train Your Spirit" is the title of my devotion today! How funny because I just signed up this morning for a half marathon in Spokane on May 16th and I'm participating in a 5K run in Ft. Worth next Saturday. June 27th is the Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon.

Moving on with the devotional, I read that Titus 2:12 says "Grace has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness and wordly desires, to live discreet, upright and devote lives in this present world."

The author of this devotional says "spending time with God is 'spirit' practice. As you do it diligently, your spirit will grow strong and will start to overcome the habits of the flesh....become a spiritual athlete. Put yourself in training by practicing the things of God. Build your spirit muscles through fellowship with Him."

I've been physically training hard. Lots of miles under my belt, sometimes two workouts a day, losing weight and inches, gaining strength and endurance to run-walk these races to make sure I'm not be totally exhausted at the end. Today's devotional makes me think about my spiritual walk and how much time I don't spend in "training" with the Lord. I know I mess up big time and I'm told to not get discourage when I stumble and fall. It takes discipline, just like it does training for these events. I want Him to say at the end of the earthly race "well done, my good and faithful servant."

You must excuse me...I need to change into my workout clothes, grab my MP3 player that has great Christian music on it and head to the gym! You can be sure I'll also be talking to my "trainer" while I'm on that treadmill.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Gratitude Friday and HAPPY MAY DAY!

Good morning, everyone! Coffee's on, cups are on the counter waiting for you. Enjoy the freshly roasted coffee that the Duke roasted for us earlier this week.

Today's Gratitude List:

1. God's grace that reaches down to me even when I mess up big time!
2. Worship night at Melissa's church! It was a blessing to just sit there and absorb.
3. My dad and his family. Even though it was a bit awkward, it was nice to have them at my house and be a part of their lives for 17 hours.
4. Friends who meet for coffee, lunch, birthday celebrations.
5. Continued weight loss and being in good health! Having a compromised immune system, I always expect to get everyone's germs and I have only been sick once this school year. I've been in many classrooms with kiddos, too. Still don't have much of a voice because of pollen allergies but I can live with it for another week. My advice for staying healthy: wash your hands often, NEVER use anyone else's pencil or pen, get lots of sleep, exercise!
6. Drs who saw the Class 2 Block in my husband's heart monitor report and put him on blood pressure medicine to help with the problem!

I'm teaching Kindergarten this morning so I'm headed out in a little bit. What's on your list today? I'd love to come visit you -- I'll even bring my own coffee mug!