Monday, March 22, 2010

Whenever I hear the song of a bird or look at the blue, blue sky,
Whenever I feel the rain on my face or the wind as it rushes by.
Whenever I touch a velvet rose or walk by our lilac tree…
I’m glad that I live in this beautiful world Heavenly Father created for me.
He gave me my eyes that I might see the color of butterfly wings.
He gave me my ears that I might hear the magical sound of things.
He gave me my life my mind my heart; I thank him reverently.
For all his creations, of which I’m a part,
Yes I know Heavenly Father loves me

I have been thinking a bit lately about how great it is to live where we do. As spring has come upon us, I have been reminded about how beautiful the earth is and how grateful I am for it. This song says it so much better than I can.

The sun makes me want to go out and play all day. I don't know what it is, but something about it gets me seriously excited and it is so motivating. It makes me want to be better and try harder at everything I do. Thank you Spring for finally coming.

Friday, March 19, 2010

M-I-S-S-I-S-S-I-P-P-I

Mississippi here we come. Last night we made it official that we will be living in Mississippi or Arkansas for the next 2 years while I work there as a Spanish teacher in grades 7-12. We will be doing it as part of an organization called Teach For America.

If you haven't ever heard of TFA its main goal is to provide students with quality teachers so they can get the education they deserve. This typically occurs in locations where teachers are in high demand - urban or rural settings, our assignment is very much a rural setting. These teachers are not usually teaching majors in college, but are recruited from all majors and backgrounds. TFA works with them and the school districts to get the teachers certified in their teaching area. The TFA members aren't TFA employees, TFA just trains them and connects them with areas in need where they are paid by the school that they teach at. Also, for every year that I teach, we will receive a grant for graduate school in the future. Yearly, about 25,000 recent college graduates apply for positions within TFA and something like 3-4,000 get accepted into the program. 11% of all Ivy League graduates apply to teach for america and the average college GPA for TFA members is a 3.7. I don't have a 3.7 GPA. I do have a 3.07 GPA, so how I got in is a mystery.

Either way, whether I got accepted by accident or not, we have accepted the offer and they can't stop me now. We are really excited about it and the opportunity it will be for us. We have spent the last two weeks asking questions, talking to people in MS, meeting other BYU students who have been accepted into TFA, and praying about it and we finally came to our decision last night. It is very exciting to know what we will be doing for the next few years and exciting to be given this great opportunity. We are really happy about it.

So basically our assignment is the Mississippi delta, not to be confused with the Mississippi river delta. The river delta is where the river empties out into the ocean. The mississippi delta is the area in the northwest of the state between the mississippi river and the yazoo river. We could be placed in a school anywhere from Jackson MS to the northern edges of MS to the eastern edges of Arkansas. I will have to leave for training in early June and it will last till mid July. School starts in early August so we are figuring out the details of when we would move and all that.

While we are very excited we are going to miss everyone. We don't know anyone who lives in MS. We have met another couple who is going to the same general area as us, which is comforting, but we will have to make a lot of new friends which is exciting and a little sad. Anyway, we just wanted to let you all know our plans and let you know how excited we are.

Brent

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Car seat cover

I finally got a sewing machine! I inherited my Grandma's sewing machine about a year ago but just last Sunday found it at my mom's house. Yay! So, a couple of days ago I did a project that I have been waiting to do for a while. My sister is having a baby in May so I made her this car seat cover. I love the fabric on the top. I think it is adorable. It's definitely not made of the best craftsmanship, but hopefully it will hold up long enough for her.


This is one of the bows I put on top of the straps. I love this addition. However, it took me about as long to do the bows as the rest of the cover. Haha. I don't think I will be doing them again. Or maybe I will just figure out an easier way to do them.


The inside:


I really want to keep it for myself but I found some fabric a few days ago that I want to make another one out of for me. The fabric is a little expensive but goes on sale today so I will be able to get it. Wow. I really should be doing homework. Oh well. This is more fun.

Of course I couldn't leave without posting some pictures of Brinley. Here she is:







Saturday, March 13, 2010

A day of firsts

Yesterday was a great day for Brinley. It all started with her having her first real (ish) food! She tried rice cereal mixed with breast milk. We decided to see if we could get her to eat it because we have been having problems getting her to take a bottle. Every Wednesday I have 4 hours straight of class so Brent has to give her a bottle during that time. However, the last few weeks she hasn't been taking the bottle and just ends up starving and leaving her daddy a little frustrated. So, hopefully rice cereal will be able to cover her on Wednesdays while I am at school. It was a lot of fun to get to watch her spit all the food out and eventually start to get the hang of it and swallow a bit. Of course, the food got all over her face. What a cutie.



Her second first of the day was rolling over! Yay! Finally. Brent and I have been working on teaching her how to do this for a while. The last few weeks she has been so close but hasn't been able to do it by herself. So last night we put her on her stomach and then we all (Scott was here) sat down to eat dinner. Then we all noticed that she was all of the sudden on her back. After finding out that no in the room had turned her over, we realized she had done it on her own. Victory. Now, every time you put her on her stomach she immediately rolls back over. Looks like she isn't going to ever learn how to crawl if she wont stay on her stomach. I guess that is a good thing. Then we don't have to baby proof our apartment.

video

Are we obsessed parents. Probably. Brinley is our best source of entertainment right now. We love that little girl more than anything. Keep up the good work Brinley!



Thursday, March 4, 2010

Dimensions

So my sister asked what the dimensions are of the reels, so here goes.

The biggest one is 28.5 inches thick and 39.5 inches in diameter.

Second biggest is 21.25 by 30

13.5 by 23.5

and 12.5 by 17.75

In the rare occasion you are looking for where I got them you can look here for the next 15 days or so until the ad expires. I bet they still have more, mostly in the largest size. Who knows, they may get more and more as they go too.

So the leading options for putting them to use would be, coffee or end table, stacked shelves, a planter or in a garden or flower patch, a little stool/chair for kids, and a big rocking chair. I'd love any more ideas.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Wanted: Creativity

Dear all 4 of you who may actually read this blog:

I like to think I'm a little creative, but lets be honest, drawing up special plays for my intramural flag football team doesn't count. So I need your help. I know Christa is really creative, but I tell you, she is pretty busy and I think the only time she touches this computer on purpose is when she is working on homework or writing her paper she is working on right now. I know she has some fun ideas and I've thought of some, but I want to know what all four (3 actually, I know someone has stopped reading by this point) of our readers think and what ideas you have.

I know its a little early to be asking for blog participation, you kind of need a following in order to expect a response from anyone for any other reason than just pity.

Anyway...I'm still asking for your creativity and ideas.
One of my favorite hobbies is browsing the KSL.com Classifieds, specifically the FREE section. I always see stuff that I think would be cool to get(like the big screen TVs that I want to get and fix up but I know I'm crazy to even think it so I don't do it). A little bit ago I actually took the first step and got something for freeeeee on KSL.

We got these wooden reels that I thought were cool. (I bet they have more still - there were several more when we went by)





How big are they? Well the big one BARELY fit in the back of our 4 Runner and sat on top of the wheel wells because it was so wide and barely missed the top of the car. How did we fit all 4 in the car at the same time with Christa riding shotgun and Brinley in the back? Magic.



The two biggest ones are the coolest - they are pretty solid. Only the big ones are built out of solid wood and have solid wood centers. The smaller ones are just plywood with metal rods and a very hard cardboard center. I think all 4 are cool because they come in different sizes, plus we couldn't fit any more big ones in our car(not that we have room at home for the ones we got, let alone any more).


So I guess what I'm asking is, now that I have gotten these reels - what do we do with them?
Our apartment doesn't have much room for anything, but we are great at accumulating stuff. I'm trying to make more room every day and get rid of stuff.

I have some ideas, like the second biggest one would be cool as an end table. Is that weird? I know it sounds weird to me, but I think its cool. I think the biggest one would make a cool chair. Maybe its not big enough for it, but this is what it could look like.



Also, do we paint them or are they cool because they aren't painted and look all rustic? I've also thought the biggest one would be cool as a coffee table if you cut off some of the sides to make it more oval shaped and made it shorter.

Your ideas and advice would be much appreciated. Also - don't be afraid to just tell me they are stupid and a waste of space if you think they are. I can't decide if their only location should be outside on the porch (oh wait, we don't have one) or in the barn (none of those either). Would you allow something like this to enter your home? I promise I won't be offended if you think they are stupid. We have a dumpster out back and I'm not afraid to use it.

Monday, March 1, 2010

noises

Brinley's favorite activities now include (besides crying sleeping and eating) slobbering, sucking on her hand, attending BYU sporting events, and making noises. She was just laying making noises so I grabbed my phone and shot a quick video.

video