Sunday, August 29, 2010

Goodbye summer vacation

All good things come to an end, but with every ending there is a new beginning. As this summer comes to an end I'm excited for a new school year. Each school year comes with it's challenges but it also comes with it's fun times, getting to know a new group of kids, and trying to make the year better than last one.
I definitely think this year will be better than last. I know that I have 18 kids this year which is fewer than last and in those 18 the case load is less. The ieps I have to adhere to aren't as heavy as last year. That's not to say I don't like a challenge but I'm happy that this year I won't have a 1 on 1 aide in my room. I don't mind collaborating with another person, but she was needier than my student last year which got to be very frustrating.
To end my vacation today I really didn't do anything too exciting. I started the day with a slow and easy wakeup around 8:30, but managed to stretch out breakfast and reading the paper for about an hour, and then it was gym time. Today's workout was 90 minutes on the elliptical with a 2 minute cool down... Totaling about 11.65 miles today. Then I tried to focus on the abs aftter that. Not a super hard workout, but enough.
This afternoon i did some dusting, fun fun, then hit the books. I was determined to get my homework done for my grad class before school begins, so I enjoyed the nice weather outside while doing work. It's definitely warm out, but there was a good breeze in the shade, very relaxing for some reading about disabilities.
Tomorrow is technically the last day of vacation, but it's pretty busy, so Im going to try to relax for the rest of today. Tomorrow I have an early appointment with the orthopedic doctor, finally I will learn more about my knee. Then I plan on going to the gym and will go to school to tie up some loose ends after that. Tuesday is full of teacher meetings and trainings so I want to make sure my room is good to go before that. Then Wednesday I will meet the new crew and start up the three day work week! My body is not used to working, its going to be rough getting back into the routine, but I know I will adjust!
Time to veg out for a bit before dinner! Good bye summer.... Hello year 7 of teaching!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

the early bird gets the worm

I was an early bird for a Saturday today...
not super early, but up at 7 so I could have breakfast before going to spin at 8:30. Ginny lead us through an endurance ride this morning! These rides seem a little easier because you don't go super hard for little spirts, it's more just increasing your resistance over the hour class to keep your heart rate in a certain zone... today she wanted us to be burning some fat, not glycogen storage. I've learned a lot just going to spinning classes about heart rate and I'm excited to be taking a heart rate/ heart monitor class on Sept. 7th. Jen will be teaching it and I'm eager to learn about the zones that I should be in.
After spin this morning I hit up the elliptical for an hour, didn't push it, but kept the sweat up! I was seriously a sweaty beast after that. I did lots of stretching followed by some crunches on the ball and on the mat. And more stretching. Came home... love the 2 minute commute home, and put ice on my knee. It really wasn't bothering me at all, but I am following my doctor's orders until I see the orthopedic on Monday morning. Eager and anxious to hear what the doc has to say for sure.
Although I was super active this morning, I think I've balanced it out by being lazy this afternoon. I literally laid on my bed after showering this afternoon and just watched tv, although there really is nothing good on. I need to get changed up now so I can go to mass. After that I really should be a dork and so some grad school work... such is the life of a student and teacher!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Fresh air Friday!

today is the last Friday of summer vacation, and that's okay! I am ready for new beginnings, the first of which will be the new school year. As the years go on i feel like it gets easier on the first day, especially because by now i've had many of my students siblings in previous years. Being familiar with the families of kids I'll be teaching makes it easier.
Originally i was going to go into school today and finish up my room, but I decided to actually give myself a vacation day. I found out my sis was coming home for the day to go shopping with my mom, so i hit up the gym early this morning so i could do some back to school shopping with them. I was in need of so me new cardigans/ sweaters... I find that layers are key at school, with my building you never know if its going to be warm or chilly, so i like a versatile wardrobe! We hit up the usual stores... Old navy, gap, ae, Anne Taylor loft, and we got a few things. I was surprised to then actually find some cardigans at target! I've never reslly looked at clothes there, i mean i know they're not super high quality, but when i spend half my time on the floor next to 8 year olds who accidentally write on you and spill frequently, i hate spending a lot of momey on clothes.... I may be frequenting target more often for some pieces to add to my wardrobe!
Not only was it fun shopping, but it is so beautiful out that it was great just to be out and about in this wonderful fresh air! I saw a few other teachers from my district out there shopping too!
This afternoon i can't really enjoy he weather, i need to go sit in Honda and get my oiled changed. But i am going to kill two birds with one stone and bring my homework from my theories of learning disabilities class to get done!
Oh yeah almost forgot to add that i went out with some of my favorites last night. It's great to have close friends that you can not see for a month and get together right where we left off. Were going to to try to make it a once a month dinner meet up... Once the school year starts we seem to get crazy busy especially since most of us are teachers.. Although one is on maternity leave :)
Other good news as of late is in the news... Check out this week's edition of The Landmark, here's the link to the story about me:


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

And the rain continues

While we really needed the rain, I think I have had enough now. Rain makes me sleepy and I can't be sleepy today, lots going on!
Currently I am at the new teacher training but I am not presenting right now, so I'm putting my iPad to good use and recapping the day, or what's happened thus far.
I slept well last night but felt refreshed this morning, it was a lot easier to wake up! I even managed to have extra time to fold laundry hill waiting for my tea. I was out the door and in sterling by 8:30. I should only be out here until noonish, then I'm hoping to get some lunch before hitting up the gym. Then I have class tonight! Starting up course 4 this evening. This course is dealing with special Ed which should be interesting.
Well I should be paying attention now...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

training some new teachers

I had a flashback today to 7 years ago... because the people I was speaking to were in the same seat, literally, that I was sitting in 7 years ago.
Today was the beginning of new teacher training in my district. This year I was a presenter, not a receiver of information! I am one of the coordinators for the mentor program, so my partner and I were there today to speak to the newbies and inform them about the program that they will be in. It's strange to think that 7 years have gone by since I starting teaching, although I must say that I have learned a lot in those 7 years.
I think it was beneficial for my body to have to be present at these trainings. It sounds bad, but having to be up and in the shower by 6:45 this morning was a shocker to my body. I think this week will be a good training to get back into the school routine!
In order to stay in the schoolish routine I worked out later today, as I would after school during the school year. I noticed that my energy level was lower going to the gym at 4, but after about 15 minutes on the elliptical I perked up a bit and was good to go. I ended up doing 75 minutes on the elliptical and finished just in time to make the 5:30 yoga class. It was really nice tonight since there were only 5 people in the class, so the instructor was able to walk around and really make sure that we were doing the poses accurately. She also answered our questions as we went, which is really helpful. Sometimes you think you're doing something right and you're a little off, which makes a big difference.
I am definitely more tired right now after a full day, compared to some of my lazier days this summer, but it's a good thing... I like having a busy schedule and feeling like I fill my days :)
Tomorrow is going to be another busy day... I am training new teachers for the morning, squeezing in a workout early afternoon, and then starting grad classes again at 4:30 until 9:00... wicked long Wednesdays are coming back!
Time to iron and get ready for tomorrow! Hopefully tomorrow is the last of these chilly days too... I just had some tea to warm me up!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

muffin mania

Ok not really muffin mania, I only made a dozen. Here they are finally! (Good thing I took these yesterday, because the dozen is nearly gone today! No, I didn't eat them all, I am a good sharer with my family :)

oops, I guess I didn't get the whole dozen... taste tester already removed here!



Remaining muffins cool down...


A closer look!



sunday (no)long run day...

Well Sundays are usually started with the long run... but since I'm not running until I see the orthopedic next week I did a non-run long run... meaning I did 12.7 miles in 1:40 on the elliptical! I feel great! Even though it's not running it still feels good to be able to work out like this and not have my knee hurt. Granted, the doctor has me taking an aleve daily so I may be masking a bit of pain, but still it feels so much better than weeks when I have tried to run and stubbornly battled through the run. I'm really eager to talk to the orthopedic and have him asses my situation and hopefully give me some answers or at least get me started on some pt and the road to recovery!
Other than the gym this morning it's a rainy dreary day here in MA. The rents are in flight now on their way home from DC where they went to a wedding last night, congrats to the new Mr. and Mrs. Canning, I'm sure Cristina was a beautiful bride and it was a great event.
Although I said I was going to get some school work done yesterday I kind of managed to skirt around that issue, aside from making my kiddo's birthday chart for the classroom. Instead I played in the kitchen a bit more and made a pasta salad, figuring there'd be leftovers for the hungry travelers when they get home this afternoon. I also went into the garden and of course there was another crop of tomatoes to be picked... leaving the kitchen full of dozens of tomatoes again. So I decided to use more of them and make a homemade tomato sauce! I love the smell of simmering sauce... something about the smell I think of the oregano infusing with the tomatoes that just smells soooo good. Making a pot of it is super easy and then it's in the fridge for some easy meals during the week!
Here's what I did:
Sauted three garlic cloves with half a yellow onion
Added a small can of tomato paste
Took that mixture and added it to a pot with one can of sclefani crushed tomatoes
Added 6 large diced frest tomatoes from garden
For seasoning I put in about a teaspoon of garlic salt, about 1+ tablespoons of oregano, 2 bay leaves, a few dashes of pepper, and a tablespoon of sugar- you could use a little honey here instead, but it helps to balance out the acidity of the tomatoes, good trick!
Stirring occasionally, I let it simmer on low for about 40 minutes... you can just reheat it in the pot when you're ready for some pasta! My fam also makes roasted veggies with the sauce on it too, very good.




Also made another pasta salad too:


Well I am sweaty still from the gym... probably should go shower now that I've got my icing done! (Icing has become my blogging time... I enjoy multitasking.)
Happy end to the weekend and last week of summer vacation!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

making something out of an overripe banana

Ok I really don't like to be wasteful. While I like to clean my classroom and throw stuff away, before I do so I think if someone else could use something or if I could recycle it somehow. The same goes for food. No, I didn't recycle food, well actually I kind of did.
I was cleaning up after lunch and saw a lonely almost too ripe banana sitting in the fruit bowl. It was past the time at which I would like to eat it, I touched it and it felt mushy through the skin. Unfortunately the banana bread recipe that I've adapted and love needs 3 bananas. So I did a little thinking and looking in the cabinets, i didn't want to go buy more ingredients, but rather use that banana with stuff on hand to make something... Then I got an inspiration when i saw peanut butter and oatmeal, there must be a recipe for a peanut butter-banana- oatmeal bread of some sort. I goggled these ingredients and decided on peanut butter- banana and oatmeal muffins... Which I think should be called Elvis oatmeal muffins. I used a basic recipe from www.allrecipes.com but made some minor changes. If I make it again I probably would substitute some wheat flour for the white and would add more oatmeal- i like a denser more grainy muffin.
Ingredients

1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup quick cooking oats
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup mashed ripe banana
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
Combine 1 cup flour, oats, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and baking powder. Whisk together milk, peanut butter, banana, egg, oil, and vanilla. Add banana mixture to dry ingredients, mixing just until moistened. Fill prepared muffin cups 3/4 full.
In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup flour, melted butter and 2 tablespoons brown sugar. Sprinkle topping evenly over muffins.

I baked these for nearly 20 minutes, then they seemed a little bland, so I wanted to jazz them up... i was thinking of drizzling some melted pb on top, but thought they'd then be too messy to eat. So instead I just made a little cinnamon and sugar mixture and sprinkled it over the top. I know, not a wicked healthy topping, but a little sugar doesn't hurt every now and then!
I think maybe putting a little cinnamon in the batter would be good... I also would love some walnuts in there too. But they taste good for first time baking these and i didn't have to throw away the banana!


This morning I was a busy bee at the gym. I was on the elliptical for 90 minutes! And it felt good. I didn't really go hard, just a relaxing gait. Then I thought my abs could use a little attention. I used different ab machines then did various crunches and situps on and off the ball and mat.

I've done a great job at procrastinating school work today, but should probably face the music and get a little of it done before heading to church this afternoon.

Muffin pics to come...

Friday, August 20, 2010

new year, new title

No it's not really new years, but in the life of a teacher the years are different. The end of august should be the time for sparklers as the year comes to a close and a new year begins on September first. Although i don't think i would fare well if I stayed up past midnight to ring in this new year, quite the contrary, it's an early to bed new years eve which leads to little sleep because of excited, anxious, nervous energy for the first day of school. Yes, at the age of 28 I still can't sleepnthe night before the first day.
I was in my classroom again today, surprise surprise, and the new year really hit me. My room is finally back in tact, and today i started photocopying thing for the first week and got the " get to know you" work ready. My 18 students should receive a letter today to let them know I'm their teacher, there's no looking back... Year 7 here I come.
Along with the new year reflections I was thinking about my blog... Its more of my own ramblings, but I think everything really fits into three categories... My life as a teacher, my life as a student, and my life as a runner. Although i guess there's the very little time i have for " fun" so that will be the fourth extra category. Anyways, I really want to use this to keep track of living my life in the healthy way i try to do. I don't intend to teach anyone anything extraordinary here, but rather, use this to reflect at the end of the day, and if someone out there reads something anddp it resonates with them, then great, if not, that's okay too.
As for today's thoughts, i am resting my legs while eagerly waiting to hear my xray results. I had them done on wednesay, and the doc said I'd hear in 1-2 days, so I'm crossing my fingers I heat today, not that it really matters, i am going to an orthopedic in a week, which will have more answers I am sure.
I think my recent knee issues have led me to change the name of my blog too... I really want to be a life long runner, but realize that there are some bumps in the road along the way. I am on a bumpy training road right now, but know that i will perservere. I also have realized that I shouldn't be comparing my training to anyone elses, i am in race with myself and as long as i listen to my body and continue to push myself to my own limitations, then I am fulfilling what I need and want to do. While i am basically committing to not run until I get this knee thing figured out, I have also committed to not let not running hinder my overall healthy lifestyle and physical activity. I love being active and used to associate that with miles logged on the road or treadmill. I have realized that I can get nearly as good a workout using the elliptical or a bike. I have had done awesome rides and have also done spinning classes at my new gym, which is literally 2 minutes from my house, so convenient. At first i was a little skeptical with spin, but have realized that I control the resistance- it's like differentiated instruction on a bike! ( theres the teacher in me). I have also been going to yoga, which I think is more beneficial for a healthy mind, although I know it helps for a healthy body too. I'd be telling a lie if I said I didn't miss running, but i know it's just a long race, so I'll be getting back in the course in time. I am just taking a little scenic detour.
Well thats enough of my rambling for now, i need to venture off to purchase some healthy food so i can make a good dinner, how is the fridge looking so bare again?

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Trip to the doctors

I had a doctors appointment this morning but I still don't know what's wrong with my knee. I don't think there's a major problem, but I had several x rays taken so I'm anxious to hear the results of those. My doctor also said to ice, which I've been doing but also to take an aleve daily, apparently i have some swelling that i was unaware of. I am going to an orthopedic on august 30th so until then I am not going to run.
I did go to the gym later this am, just to elliptical though. My knee was sore i think from her moving all around and also from my run yestrerday. I just iced it though and im going to cvs this afternoon to get some aleve. I don't like taking meeds but if the doctor orders it, then I listen.
I am not going to my classroom today, i have enough odds and ends at home that have to get done. I need to go there tomorrow though to meet with a colleague about curriculum and also to meet with a photographer. I was interviewed yesterday for a local paper who is doing a back to school story and profiling various teachers in the district and some how i was chosen. So i get to have mug taken tomorrow!
Well I should get cracking on some school work, i can't beleve it's almost here... I also realized that a week from today i also start grad classes again, things will be getting busy around here really soon!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

In "knee"d of an answer

I decided to run today... And ran 7 miles. Good news, but not really. During the run my knee really never felt good. I had about a 3 or a 4 out of 10 on a pain level, it never got worse but the fact it lingered lead me to decide to call the doctor as soon as I got home. I have to go to my primary care in the morning but the nurse said try could take an xray and if need be refer me to an orthopedic, which I'm guessing will happen like it did with my hamstring 2 years ago.
I could have done this a month ago but I tried to fix it myself, now it's time to get professional help to assess the problem, then work on a way of fixing it.
I am anxious to go there because the news may not be great, but I need to know what's happening in my knee!
In other news my classroom is coming along, nearly physically ready. Soon i have to think about curriculum and scheduling and actually figuring out whats going to be taught in the beginning weeks.
Well this is short, but I'm wiped out and ready to rest... I did enjoy an hour yoga class tonight, so I had a happy ending to my day! Now Im going to watch some Glee :)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday the 13th

I don't believe in superstitions.
I do have some routines though, that I seem to always do for example:
I always put my right shoe on first and have to have double knots.
I'm a believer in pasta the night before a race, just out of habit.
The morning of a race it has to be oatmeal.
I don't like to set my alarm to any 15's... for example I like getting up at 6:22, not 6:25.
I always like to leave my tv on channel 7 when I turn it off, since it's my "lucky number."

Ok I am too tired to think of others right now, but that's just a few.
As for today I am loving the heat relief... I'll take 70s over 90s, although I do enjoy a good hot day every now and then. Allergy relief today too is also a bonus!

I got up early this morning... thanks dad for being loud!... But it forced me to start up the tea kettle at 7:30... I know this isn't "early" but for summer it is!
After breakfast the gym was on the agenda. Today's workout was 80 minutes on the elliptical. Lots of sweat later I felt great!

As for the rest of the day I spent it at my classroom (well only til early afternoon). I pretty much finished cleaning and reorganizing my classroom library! This may not seem like a lot but, I emptied every single bin and sprayed and wiped them down, then reorganized and added more bins due to overflowing bins! I still need to type up some new labels, but as far as the physical organization, it's done!

Science and "series" section...



And all of the others...




Here's a close up:



A lot of my library is leveled based on guided reading. This way after I have my assessments (DRA2) with my students I can target the level at which they are reading and direct them to a letter that is "just right" for them. That doesn't mean this is the only thing that they can read, but they must have a just right book in their folder for independent reading time. This helps to increase their fluency and also various comprehension strategies since at this just right level they should be able to access the material in the book without assistance from someone else.

Well it's time to do some errands this evening. I need to get some good food since I'm running low on some essentials ie: lactaid milk!

My sister is visiting this evening and tomorrow night too I think, so it should be good to see her. As for the rest of the night, I don't have any plans, but think there's a bike ride with some relatives in the am... have to check on this though.

Hope I don't get any bad luck for the rest of the day!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

getting freshhhhh

There were many fresh things today!
First of all I didn't wake up feeling fresh, but knocked myself out of it by forcing myself to visit the gym before a school visit. It's amazing how positive my body feels after moving around... 70 minutes on the elltiptical and I had a fresh new outlook on the day! Love the power of positive thinking+ endorphin kick! (Although I chose not to run... I am giving my body the week off from it I think.)
Came home to shower and felt oh so fresh and clean!
Then it was off to school... not so fresh when I get there, but my library is getting a new fresh look! I bought some new bins, so it's helping to sort out all of the books I've accumulated. Here's the progress I made today:



May not look like much, but literally I've emptied every bin, cleaned the inside with spic and span and made sure the books were put in the bin I wanted, some had to be reworked since I had overflowing bins from last year!




I still have another day of library revamping tomorrow though...





This afternoon I had some more freshness after relaxing this afternoon... I could really get used to reading in the recliner with a nice coolish breeze from the outside!
I got my second wind for spinning this evening and feel so invigorated right now! It was only a 45 minute class of intervals, but we really worked! After a quick shower and a fresh salad... lettuce and tomatoes grown in my yard! And a boca burger accompanied by a fresh batch of my salsa, I am feeling fueled back up... although no more activity today, it's a big brother-project runway-boston med night. For someone who really doesn't watch much tv, I am a tv junkie this evening. :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

whirlwind of a wednesday

Busy day today!
This is gonna be quick since Big Brother is on soon and I'm an addict, yup. I get way too hooked in "reality" tv.
So I got up this am and decided not to run... my knee felt better but it's depressing when it hurts, so I wanted to definitely feel good, so I ellipticaled for 70 minutes.
Next up was Paxton. I took some pics today to show just how many books I have and still have to reorganize since I bought more bins. I am crazy and like them all leveled and binned according to genre.

and more books...


at least I cleaned the shelves... they're just waiting to be filled again with books!



So I did more dusting and organizing today and started to tackle cleaning out my big closet.

I also cleaned some "editing phones"... if you're a teacher this is a great idea: go to home depot and buy some pvc elbows... apoxy them together and voila you get "telephones" so the kiddies can read their story or paper out loud and hear themeselves... it's a cheap way to get good results!

some people call them "whisper phones" too:




Another fun thing I have that's a cheap tip is to use shoe racks as my lunch and snack shelves! My kids' cubbies are down the hall, so to minimize clutter and crumbs they put their lunch box/bag here in the am!



After having enough in my classroom I came home... once again chilled a bit and watched a little Oprah. She had a great show on food! It made me realize just how important it is to think first about what you put in your mouth and where it came from!

I signed up for spinning class tonight (another double day!)... there was a 35 minute interval class with Coreyy which was fun and I stayed for Jen's hour class which focused on endurance and strength! I'd say I've had enough for the day... and now it's time to kick back for the evening! (and do laundry... blah) :)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

another two workout "twos"day tuesday

I was really disappointed waking up with a wicked sore knee again and beginning to wonder if I should just suck it up and go get it checked out. But I am so stubborn that I feel like I can actively rest it and it will cure itself... I really can still do most things on it, it just hurts sometime!
So usually Tuesday am I run, but chose not to today. I thought that might hurt it more, so I opted for the elliptical. 75 minutes later I knocked out just over 9 miles! Although getting off my quads were super tight, so I stretched a lot.
Then it was cleaning time... at my classroom. Seriously, I would have taken and posted picture of what was showing up on my paper towels but it was so gross I think I would have been too embarrassed to post them, it's amazing how much dirt and dust collect!Also spiders.... they were all over my window sills... dead and alive! ah!
I only cleaned for a couple of hours. I got rid of a lot of dust and dirt but in doing so and taking tons of books and items off shelves my room looks almost more of a mess than when I started, oh well, it's all a part of the process.
One of my colleagues and teammates was there and her hubby was nice enough to help me take down chairs which the janitors had stacked on top of my heater. I know I'm jacked (haha) but taking those down would have been a challenge so I'm grateful he took care of it!
This afternoon I was super bored and slightly tired... possibly because of the heat? Or allergies? Yes, I was sneezing my head off again today despite the claritin pill I took.
After watching some day time tv which isn't all that great, although Oprah was interesting... random people with "cool jobs" were on it. From a cake baker- Buddy from "Cake Boss" to a stunt double it was an inside scoop on their job. Sometimes I wonder what life would be like if I weren't a teacher? I am pleased with the path I chose, but think if I were to go back and do it again or I had to start all over it might be fun to go into the medical field. Not sure which area, but I find the way the human body works to be fascinating... maybe something along the lines of exercise physiology? But for now I am continuing along the path I have chosen...
Anyways, after watching some tv I decided to get off my lazy butt. I was going to take out my bike, I think she misses me since I haven't rode her in a week, but realized, it was super hot out there! So I did the next best thing... gym round 2. I went there and rode the bike for an hour. They have cool bikes where you choose a race and can watch it on the screen. It kind of makes me go faster/ push myself because I feel like I am competing against the people on the screen! Fun for me...
This evening I really didn't feel like cooking, but was craving bread... frozen naan to the rescue! Trader Joe's has awesome naan (indian flat bread) which bakes wicked quick.... so I sauteed some veggies, baked the naan and topped it all with my homemade salsa for a nice dinner! Although I am getting hungry again... time for snacking and tv to end the night! :)

Monday, August 9, 2010

starting up the week

And so another week begins... sadly there are only three left to the summer! And it's really nearing the end because I have to start to get back into the classroom to clean it and get everything organized for the first day of school... august 31st.
I woke up this morning a little earlier than I've been getting up, around 7 am. I think I needly to slowly start to wake up earlier and earlier so I get back on school schedule. The reason I got up earlier today was so I could go to the gym before heading to my classroom. Unfortunately my knee was wicked sore this morning... probably cause I ran almost 20 miles between sat and sunday... but I told myself just get to the gym at least to fulfill the usual lifting requirement of Monday. Surprisingly I was on the elliptical for 75 minutes and it didn't hurt, not going to complain that my knee feels better now than it did this morning. I also got in the upper body lifting too.
I came home to ice my knee and shower... then it was time to go to my classroom. I cleaned for about 3 hours and had enough, so I came home for some food. Resting up a bit now and tutoring this evening! Hope you all had a great Monday! :)

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Toughing out a 10 miler and a fresh and easy salsa!

10 miles sometimes is a stroll in the park... Burt not today. After 2 miles my knee was sore and I really wanted to jumbo off the treadmill and call it a day. My allergiesnwere bothering me and I just felt off today. But I really toughed it out, if my knee got really bad I would have stopped, but until then I just stared ahead and trudged onward. As i ran I kind of kept setting new goals... Just get a half hour done, ok now get to 45 minuetes, ok you've done 45 you can get to an hour... Ok you did an hour you van slow down but try to run a long cool down... And voilà I managed to get to the 10 mile mark in 74:02. Phew, I was really ready to be done. I also realized after that the gym didn't have the fans on, what's up with that?
This afternoon I am lounging big time, I stll just feel off. I just played in the kitchen a bit.... Still trying to find ways to use up moms tomatoes... Today's creation: homemade salsa! In my usual fashion I didn't measure things nor did I follow a recipe, I just put together things that made sense...
4 of moms freshly picked tomatoes
Half a green bell pepper
Half a jalapeño pepper
Half a yellow onion
Bunch of cilantro
Few dashes of garlic salt and pepper
Half a squeezed lime

Basically just finely chopped it all up, now it's chilling in the fridge and getting all the flavors going so i can enjoy it this evening! :)

A handful from the garden...


Ready for some resting in the fridge!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Long day at sea!

First things first... I changed the look of my blog!
Now for yesterday... Started up early at the gym, 80 minutes on the elliptical! I love working out in the am!
Then it was a long day ahead, off to Gloucester MA! Unfortunately this ended up takin 2.5 hrs instead of 1.5, traffic is one of my pet peaves, I hate sitting in it and we almost missed the boat! But we just made it, got our tickets and boarded the pioneer iv for a day in search of whales!
At the harbor...

Once again the trip to the whales was longer than planned... The whales were off the coast of cape cod, so it took us. About 2 hrs to get to them. Along the way we spotted a basking shark!

It's me at sea!

We had quite the whale show! A family of humpbacks played around for us and the calf even dove under the ship!

After a couple of hours we headed back and didn't get to shore until after 7:30, which meant i didn't get home until around 9:30... And very tired!
I didn't get to bed till 11:00... But I slept in till 8:30 this am! My mom's garden is full of tomatoes, so I made a fresh tomato sauce this morning... It simmered and is delicious if I do say so, and the rents agree!
Then it was gym time! Today is a running day, so I ran the usual 8 miles, but tried to go faster, my last mile was around 6:40, which is an improvement! In total I ran 8.15 miles in 57:19, then tacked on another 1 mi for a cool down. I decided to focus on abs today and did several machines to work my core, then did crunches on the ball and on the mats!
This afternoon was church time and i can say I am honestly wiped out now... But I need to focus on making some dinner before I go lay on my bed... I think tonight is going to be an early pj night!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

a sneezing machine!

Seriously, today I am a lean, mean, sneezing machine! ACHOOOOOO! I keep having sneezing fits despite the claritin I took around 8:30 this morning... this happens from time to time and I just have to deal with it.
The weather and humidity/ muggimess is not making it any easier to deal with... gray skies and sticky feeling isn't fun. Oh well, the good news is I ran in the cool AC this morning and was pretty much sneeze free in the filtered air there! Of course it took me forever to drag my lazy butt there! My mom got home from Italy last night so I was chatting with her this morning and doing the crossword puzzle and wasting time on facebook... but finally left at 10:45.
At the gym I ran for an hour... 8.21 miles! Averaged out to 7:18 pace... then I brought the pace down to liek 7.2 mph and ran/ jogged another mile to cool down. Cooling down is really so important, I like to do it and try to force myself to especially when I have the time.
There is another spinning class tonight... I went last night and loved it! The spin bikes are new and so nice... like them better than my old gym. I don't know if I'm going yet or not, I have some errands to do this afternoon, so we'll see when I get home/ how the legs are feeling later. I need to get random stuff for my classroom today... from a dust pan brush to some plastic files, and it just so happens Trader Joes is on the way to the store I need to go to, so there may be a TJ's trip thrown in there too! :)
Well I neeeeeed to shower and eat... oh yeah, and tomorrow I am going on a whale watch! I am going to try to remember my camera, maybe I will get a pic of a whale to post! :)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Slow moving

Ever have one of those mornings when you just don't want to face the music and get on with the day? That's how I felt this morning. It was totally unlike me to not wake up till 8:45, but it was nice to get a solid night's sleep! I made a special pancake breakfast for my dad, he loves when I make them, plus he had bought some maple syrup in Vermont and the real stuff just is the perfect topper!
I think I then read the paper and did the crossword for like a half hour, I planned to go to the gym, but my body was like "julie we don't want to sweat or move yet..." so i decided to do some other things. It's weird, I love working out but sometimes I just can't light the fire under my butt and get my rear in gear!
So i vacuumed! Fun fun I know, but mom is returning today from Italy so I told dad i would spruce up a bit, not like the house is a mess, but you just to freshen it up a bit! That didn't take too long, so I decided to play in the kitchen again. My moms tomatoes are ripening in the garden and I hate to see them go to waste- i eat them like candy and throw them in salads daily, but wanted to make a dish to use them up. Plus I knew the rents would be starving tonight after getting home from the airport, so this would be a nice refreshing meal or side dish... Pasta salad! Super easy... I diced up tomatoes- cherry and big boys, along with onions. I added in some peas, cooked the penne and threw it all together! For seasoning I kept it simple- oregano, garlic salt, and pepper. I don't like mayo dressing, although put that in a pasta salad, i prefer usin g an Italian dressing ( I used kens) as a marinade. It's chilling in the fridge so it should be perfect this evening! Maybe i will try to upload a pic, since it actually looks pretty too...
So after making that it was about 11:30, gym time! I hit up the elliptical for 80 minutes! Guess my procrastinating paid off! Then I did some crunches and sit ups, lots of stretching, and called it done! There is a spinning class at 5:15 and Ive yet to try it at my new gym, so i may give it a shot! I am going to put the feet up is afternoon and rest, so i think my body will enjoy a little pre dinner spin!
Well, that's all for now... Going to try to take a pretty pic of my pasta dish, we'll see if it works!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

two work out "twos"day (tuesday)

Helloooooo la, la, la! (Seinfeld... giant ball of oil?!)
Ok, weird mood... must be cause my blood is flowing from anusara yoga! That's right today consisted of two different work outs... the first was a 6 miler this morning. I ran outside to see how my knee felt with normal terrain / pavement... eh not so fab. It really wasn't too fond of the hills, kind of a pulling feeling as I ran up them. But whatever, I ran 6 miles, came home and iced. Then I had a meeting at 10.
I am cochair of the mentor program in our district, so we're trying to get stuff ready for new teachers and mentors for the fall. As a result of this I have a lot of reading and work to do to get ready for the last week of august when we have our new teaching training week, yikes!
After sitting at a desk working on my ipad for about 3 hours we called it a meeting and parted ways... of course I have more work I need to do tonight to finish up what we didn't do there. It's totally worth it though, having a mentor when you're a first year teacher is so much more helpful than being at it alone.
This afternoon was somewhat of a blur... after lunch I proceeded to lay in bed, watch Rachael Ray, and play on facebook for probably too long. Before I knew it I realized I needed to get my butt in gear again for the gym. I wanted to go to yoga class, but wanted to go early so I could get another little cardio session in. I ended up doing 37 minutes on the elliptical and ran into the yoga room just in time for class. It's amazing how great my mind and body feels after class. I love it, only wish my gym had it more than once a week... but there's talk of maybe two classes a week starting the fall, so fingers are crossed!
When I came home I made some dinner... kind of a spin on eggplant parm tonight, but a quick and easy version... I sauteed garlic and onions and threw in large rounds of eggplant, along with some zucchini and squash for color, I like to have a colorful plate! Instead of pasta, which took to long for me to make tonight, I decided to put the veggies along with some (lactose free)cheese in a wheat wrap, then grilled the whole thing pannini style. I had some garlic roasted salsa to dip it in too, very good... writing about it's making me hungry again.. good thing it'll be night time snacking soon! Ta ta for now!

Monday, August 2, 2010

getting things moving on monday

Happy Monday all! I love Mondays in the summer... in the school year, eh, not so much, haha... although I did go in to school today, but first things first- work out.
I woke up this am around 7:30, this is my normal wake up time, I would love to be able to sleep in til then everyday! Today is a cross training day, so I hit up the gym for a sweet and sweaty 80 minutes of elliptical! woot woot, sometimes I truly love getting a good sweat out, I may not look the best at the end, but I feel great! I followed that up with some upper body lifting, trying to tone my arms a bit, although I'm not sure it's working! It feels good though! Then I went to the mats for my typical ab routine.
While on the elliptical I was watching Rachael Ray and have to mention something odd... she had Chelsea Handler on the show and they alluded to a place that sells "Kitty Wigs"... seriously, who would buy a wig for their cat?! Weird!! But that is just my opinion.
Anyways, after a quick shower it was off to Paxton to my classroom. Today was like the assessment day... what do I need to do to get ready for another school year? As always I take some time just to sit there and think... and think... and think... what do I want this space to look like this year? I still don't know for sure, it kind of ends up being a work in progress, although I have a rough idea of the layout. I decided to take some "before pics" before I started to unwrap and uncover things, just for fun. I am going to have to do a lot of dusting and cleaning out shelves... but I'll do that later this week sometime.



After some cleaning I'm off to tutor for the evening... then it's bachelorette finale tonight! I've thought from the beginning that she's totally into Roberto... but tonight we'll find out who she picks! (ps... I don't think I could ever/ would ever want to be on this show.)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

August already?!

Seriously, how is it already August? I love August don't get me wrong, but that means it's back to school this month, yikes. I need to get into my classroom this week and kindnof figure out what I need to do, it's always tough the first days when everything is all packed up and away and I need to just organize and figure out what I want to put where. It gets easier though, this is the 7th time I will be setting up my room. Each year I try to make improvements on the past and make the space more user friendly and workable, both for me and the kids. It's just a matter of staring at the space and figuring out what makes the most sense. The make up of the class makes a huge difference too in my layout. Fortunately this year i won't have another one on one aide in my room. So I won't have to worry about creating space for another adult. Well, I hope to figure it out hhis week.
As for today, hello gorgeous weather! The air seems so much more fresh, i love it! I didn't enjoy it on my run, since i am still tread milling it up to try to keep it controlled for my knee. I ran 11 miles this am, ended up averaging at a 7:18 pace. The last mile i ran in around 6:40 so I was happy with that! I am icing my knee now though, still important in case there is still anything wrong in there! Sometimes I wish I had dray vision and could look under my skin to see what's going on in there... Weird I know.
The rest of the day is kind of a lazy Sunday. I am going to have some lunch, then go visit my grandparents. Tonight is also a big brother night, fun fun... I may take a walk again after dinner too. Last night my dad and i went out and it was really relaxing! I think I spend a lot of time "training" and enjoyed just walking for fun not trying to log miles!
Happy Sunday and happy August!