>Spring Break!

>I’m so excited to have a week off from my job and my 20 little darlings… okay so most of them are darling, and others are…hmm, I think I’ll stop my self there. I am actually very lucky to have a great group of kids and parents, not to mention a pretty good staff. I might do a little work here and there on planning out the next few weeks of school but otherwise I have no plans for this break. It is the best feeling! I got a good jump start to feeling more relaxed this evening though!

Noah and I went out and got a quick bite to eat before he had to go to work. Our little Mexican restaurant down the road is perfect for these types of occasions. I ate about half my meal and was stuffed! I joked with Noah about feeling a food coma coming on, and then we both joked about the term “food baby” (a term that is kind of funny and at the same time totally gross) When we got back, I laid down for a short nap around 5:45pm. I woke up at 10:00 completely confused as to what had happened. When I finally realized all of the who, what, when, where’s, etc. I had to laugh. I had been so excited when I got home about starting Spring Break, and then I start it all off with a 4+ hour nap! It’s also funny to me because while I have been stubborn lately ad not wanted to blame everything that I say, do, or feel on this little muffin growing inside of me, but there are just somethings that happen these days are so obviously pregnancy related. Lately, anytime I eat more than just a little for dinner, I crash completely!

So, the question was… do I just go back to sleep and hope I can sleep an additional 10 or more hours or get up for awhile? I tried to convince myself that it would work and I needed the sleep. After an hour or so of just laying there and thinking, and texting Noah at work in the dark, I realized it just wasn’t going to happen. Anyway I like to go to bed later and sleep in when I have any extended amount of time off because it aligns with Noah’s schedule, so I guess I’ll be well on my way after tonight!

And now to the coolest part: I’m laying there, thinking, relaxing, talking to Noah on and off… when I realized something was going on. It felt like there was a little something flipping over and over in my stomach. The more I laid there, completely still, the more I was convinced that I was feeling the baby move for the very first time. I was so excited! I wanted to stand up and shout for joy… run and tell everyone I know! I’ve had a couple times in the last few weeks where I would feel something and wonder, “is that…. ? hmmm, I dunno, maybe. Or maybe it’s just…?” but this time I was so much more sure. Some people say it feels like butterflies, and I can see why they say that but I don’t think I’d say it felt like “the fluttering wings of a precious butterfly.” C’mon, give me a break people! Sometimes those sappy comparisons just drive me crazy! If I had to liken it to anything, I’d have to say it felt like the cross between someone gently rolling a pair of dice inside my belly and a tiny mouse tumbling around in there. And I think that’s pretty close to it’s actual size right now. Right now our baby is about 4.5 inches long and 3 ounces in weight. His or her heart is pumping about 25 quarts of blood each day. We are at 16 weeks, hooray!

Anyway, so as more of my life changes and I prepare to have a son or daughter (TBA in about four weeks!) … there will be many more posts about “first this”, “first that”, and so much more. For now though, I am completely content and confident knowing that whatever is going on in there is miraculous to say the least.

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>Baking Bears

>I meant to post this awhile back… but time has escaped me. We’ve been really busy lately. After graduating, there was a flurry of activity. Friends in town, Graduation weekend, followed by my birthday. Then more friends in town, the 4th of July, and then a wonderful trip to Maui. Now that we’re back, I’m working a short teaching job Monday through Friday for the next 4 weeks. Then I’ll go straight to my new permanent teaching job. It’s a good summer, but very busy!

So back to my original point… during the last few weeks of school, I was able to do some substitute teaching at the school I spent a lot of time at this year, which was so much fun. My first grade classroom from student teaching also wanted to celebrate my birthday! That meant I would get to bring treats in and see all of my students for one last time before school let out for the summer. I decided to make cupcakes, but wanted to be a little more creative than using the box mix and frosting I had in my pantry already… (a friend of mine did something similar for her son’s first birthday party) here is the result:

They are supposed to be bears… I think they turned out pretty cute! All of the kids really liked them. They also liked picking off the candies and altering the bears faces.
Besides chocolate cake and cream cheese frosting, I used:
-Brown sugar crystals
-Jelly Beans
-Marshmallows
-Milk and carmel chews
-Chocolate chips

>My last class… really this time

>Tonight was the final class I had to attend today at Seattle University in order to finish my Masters degree. In the last few months I’ve had my last day of student teaching, my last class as a whole cohort of 50 students, and I presented my Masters project. All of these were very big milestones, but today was another one. Each student must take an elective class that meets in the evening once a week. It was a drag going to them and while the instructor and class material was great, I dreaded going each time.

This last class was different from most I’ve had and included a short presentation and then a class potluck. I made Szechuan noodles recipe courtesy of the Barefoot Contessa and my friend and mentor teacher, Krysta. It was a fun class.

I forgot to take a photo of the noodles beforehand. This is the after:

Here is the recipe:
6 garlic cloves
1/4 c. chopped ginger
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/2 c. tahini (sesame paste)
1/2 c. smooth peanut butter
1/2 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. sherry
1/4 c. sherry vinegar
1/4 c. honey
1 tsp. hot chili oil
2 Tbsp. sesame oil
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4. tsp cayenne/red pepper powder
->Combine above ingredients and puree in a food processor or blender
1 pound spaghetti
1 red bell pepper, julienned
1 yellow bell pepper, julienned
4 scallions sliced diagonally
-> Cook the spaghetti al dente. Drain and place in serving bowl.
-> Toss w/ 3/4 of sauce, then add the peppers and scallions.
-> Add remaining sauce if needed.

I love this dish because it can be served hot or cold, and you can add so many different things to it…. chicken, tofu, prawns, etc. The sauce keeps well and can be made well ahead of time, so it is easy to throw together at the last minute.

Now, there is nothing more required of me. I do get to walk across Qwest field on Sunday with a funny cap and gown.