Sierra's View: August 2012

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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

I'm a Teacher!!!!

And I love my 4th grade classroom!
So much!

I'm not entirely sure how anyone could be a teacher without absolutely loving it. 12 hour work days, constant planning,  constant adapting, faculty meetings, even more meetings, etc (and I could continue on for many many paragraphs). It baffles me that there are some teachers out there that continue to do it and do not love it. I'm not entirely sure why they would put in all of their guts and hard work into a teaching job, but whatever. Teaching is not a job for the fainthearted, that's for sure. I literally have never been so tired in my entire life. Pure exhaustion. I don't think I have stopped in two weeks. 

About a month ago, I called my mother sobbing. I was overwhelmed with all the stress that I was feeling towards teaching. I felt inadequate, stupid, unprepared, and completely stressed. I hated being the new girl. I questioned my ability, my time, and my strength. 
And let me tell you, that was a fair assumption. Hahaha.
But let me give you a little hint: seeing those kids show up every single day with an enormous amount of energy, with smiles on their faces, it makes everything worth it. And I mean that wholeheartedly. 

Today, I had someone very important in the education world tell me that I am a "natural" at teaching. She explained to me that I had those students eating out of the palm of my hand; that they could not take their eyes off me and that they were so excited to learn. 
I do not tell you this to boast, I simply would like to explain to you that it feels good to do good in this world. I feel like I have a purpose every single day and I am so grateful for that.
When my alarm goes off in the morning, I want to die. I would do anything to just sleep for one more hour. But i have learned a very valuable lesson about life over the past couple of weeks: You still show up, especially when you do not want to.
I have a real life job now. I cannot just sleep in whenever I feel like it. 
I have 25 amazing, talented, hilarious nine and ten year olds waiting for me to motivate, excite, and change their lives. 
This is going to sound so cliche, but I feel like I was made for teaching. I love what I do; despite the exhaustion. 
My classroom theme is Sports. And I did not do this simply because I am obsessed with sports, but because I want my students to learn that we are all a team. Student to student, student to teacher, parent to teacher, etc--that we are all working together to learn. It is absolutely amazing to watch these students already learn to work together. 
I have 16 boys and 9 girls in my class. 
Yikes, right?
But, you know what? 
I absolutely love it.
I feel like I am constantly telling them to be quiet, but I love the boys' enthusiasm for life and learning. I love their energy and strong personalities. 

I have learned more about life in the past two weeks than ever before. 
It has taught me that I need to not take life so seriously. That I need to be passionate, excited, and energetic like those nine and ten year olds in my class. I have learned that I need to keep going even when those kids got me sick (already! I was a freaking zombie yesterday!). I have learned that I can make a difference and that those kids are worth it. I have learned to be positive, especially when I do not want to be. 

I'm still alive people.
Tired and can barely keep my eyes open, but alive and smiling, nonetheless.

I wanted to show you some pictures of my classroom (instagram status, do not judge the awful quality!). I love it. 

The lunch count! They put popsicle sticks on whichever one they are having for the day.
Whomever doesn't do it, I assume is absent. Great for attendance and lunch count!

"Aiming for our goals" bulletin board.
Each kid wrote their goals on a soccer goal and I posted it.

Hey look! It's official!
Such a great quote. I say it to my students every day. 

Reading "Dugout" or Corner. 



Those chairs took me 9 million years to make. So worth it though. 

Home Run Writing Board

Class Management. We are still working on our "inside voice" ha. 

Literacy wall.

Come by my classroom anytime. No, but seriously!! I love visitors!
Miss Ainge :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Guess what?!


Come check me out.
That's it. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I'm Alive!!!

Yes, I am still living. 
In case any of you any realized that I was gone.
I have been on a very consistent routine of 12 hour work days, moving and unpacking in the evenings, and very minimal few sleep.
It's just awesome. Ha 
But it's okay because I LOVE MY JOB.
I sincerely love teaching. 
This is going to sound horribly cliche, but I feel like it's my "calling" in life. 
Yes, I am exhausted. Yes, some of the 9 year old boys are already driving me nuts. 
But everyday, in the midst of the pure exhaustion, when I see those kids, I instantly light up.
It is the hardest thing I have ever done. But it's worth it. 
How awesome is it that I can say that?

However, because of this extreme madness, I have not socialized in a week and a half. Nor have I blogged (duh). But, once I get into the routine of things, once I feel like I have a grasp on my life, I will return, k?

I can't wait to tell you more about my teaching experience. I have a lot more to say. This is just a little teaser ;)

In the meantime, I am guest posting over HERE. You won't wanna miss this one, guys.
Yee haw (that's a hint).

Peace and Blessings.
Your favorite teacher, 
Miss Ainge :) 

Friday, August 17, 2012

This Is What I Have Been Doing The Past Week...

1. Working...excuse me, SLAVING AWAY in my classroom.

2. And look, I made a blog for my class this year!
Yay. I'm a real blogger because I'm making multiple blogs. 
Judge me. It's fine.

3. School starts Monday.
I'm screwed.
If you only knew how stressed, exhausted, and nervous I am, people.
I'm pretty sure I'm more nervous than my 4th graders. 

4. (I don't really understand why I still have these numbers going. They are not making any sense, I know.) 
No, but seriously. I am so emotional it's not even funny. 

5. I know I'm gonna be fine. I'm a natural teacher (*humble*). No, I am trying to focus on my talents because my self confidence is feeling quite low right now. I'm that "new girl" who doesn't know anything. "Um, where do we put copies for the secretary? How do I get my payment receipts? Where are the manila folders" -- Yep. Kills me to be the new person. 

6. Here we go, people. Here we go.

I'm a real teacher.

Miss Ainge 

Monday, August 13, 2012

A Letter

John Steinbeck responds to his son Thom, who wrote to his father from boarding school confessing that he had fallen desperately in love with a girl there; Steinbeck received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962.

New York
November 10, 1958

Dear Thom:

We had your letter this morning. I will answer it from my point of view and of course Elaine will from hers.

First -- if you are in love -- that's a good thing -- that's about the best thing that can happen to anyone. Don't let anyone make it small or light to you.

Second -- There are several kinds of love. One is a selfish, mean, grasping, egotistical thing which uses love for self-importance. This is the ugly and crippling kind. The other is an outpouring of everything good in you -- of kindness and consideration and respect -- not only the social respect of manners but the greater respect which is recognition of another person as unique and valuable. The first kind can make you sick and small and weak but the second can release in you strength, and courage and goodness and even wisdom you didn't know you had.

You say this is not puppy love. If you feel so deeply -- of course it isn't puppy love.

But I don't think you were asking me what you feel. You know better than anyone. What you wanted me to help you with is what to do about it -- and that I can tell you.

Glory in it for one thing and be very glad and grateful for it.

The object of love is the best and most beautiful. Try to live up to it.

If you love someone -- there is no possible harm in saying so -- only you must remember that some people are very shy and sometimes the saying must take that shyness into consideration.

Girls have a way of knowing or feeling what you feel, but they usually like to hear it also.

It sometimes happens that what you feel is not returned for one reason or another -- but that does not make your feeling less valuable and good.

Lastly, I know your feeling because I have it and I'm glad you have it.

We will be glad to meet Susan. She will be very welcome. But Elaine will make all such arrangements because that is her province and she will be very glad to. She knows about love too and maybe she can give you more help than I can.

And don't worry about losing. If it is right, it happens -- The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.



Sunday, August 12, 2012

"I just have a lot of feelings..."

10 points if you know the movie!

That's me. As a little girl.

And yes, this how I feel. RIGHT NOW. As a "big girl." 
Whoever said growing up was fun was seriously mistaken.
As I am slowly finalizing my classroom ("finalizing" probably isn't the best word--I still have a whole lot of stuff to do!), I am bombarded with a myriad of emotions. Ahhhh!!! (see above picture!) 

Every morning, with my class, I do a "one word verbal check in," which is, exactly, what the title entails: the kids describe how they are feeling in one word. This allows them to expand their vocabulary because the same word can't be repeated. So instead of "sad", they have to find another word. 
I love it because it challenges them to 1) learn to express how they are feeling out loud  2) they feel as though they are in a safe environment so they feel comfortable saying those words 3) I can check in and see how they are feeling for that day. It allows for further discussion to take place. 4) It's kinda fun! and 5) It helps develop my relationship with them. 

Yet, here I am, thinking of my "one word"to describe how I am feeling and  I find that I cant just choose one.
I now know how some of my students feel. 


Should I continue?
I literally have not stopped for about 2 weeks. And I won't until this month is over.
These innumerable feelings don't help me sleep. 
Which doesn't help.
I lay down to sleep at night and my mind is overcome with all the things that still need to be accomplished. Why does that always happen?
Yet, two nights ago, I slept for 12 hours. Yep. Told you I was tired. 
I don't want you all to think I sound like an ungrateful snot. 
I am so thankful for all these opportunities, but it does not discount all the stress that is occurring.
But it's okay. I'm just trying to take it one day at a time. 
Just bear with me, people. I may be MIA from the blogging world for a little while.
Nothing wrong with a little hiatus, eh?
Have a happy, carefree, week! Ha. 

Friday, August 10, 2012

Friday Inspiration.

Just some food for thought.
Or maybe I'm just hungry.

photo taken by: me :)

Some of us with little previous battle experience have no idea why God is allowing us to go through such difficult times in a place we thought was His will.  He's trying to make warriors out of us, girlfriend!  Rise to the occasion!  But we aren't meant to fight unseen forces alone.  You and I have the God-given right to lock arms with our sisters and brothers in Christ and defend ourselves with the sword of the Spirit and the shield of faith.  Here's the best part:  when we do, we are guaranteed the victory.  I said guaranteed. 
--Mama Beth

I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity, and her flaming self respect. And it's these things I'd believe in, even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn't all she should be. I love her and it is the beginning of everything.

--F. Scott Fitzgerald 

You don't have to necessarily rejoice in all your trials, but you should rejoice in the fact that God is with you in those trials.
Blending Life Seamlessly

Do you ever have the desire to just be with God? To not have to pull back the layers of distractions or responsibilities, but to just be with Him, as if He was sitting right beside you? I feel it so often.
Blending Life Seamlessly

Regardless of the turns life’s journey may take, the final destination of eternal life is what Heavenly Father plans for His children (see Moses 1:39). Some may even find that “plan B” was simply a way of making His “plan A” a reality.
--Stephanie J. Burns

Words from an apostle of the Lord that touched my soul: "I believe with all my heart that because God loves us there are some particularized challenges that he will deliver to each of us. He will customize the curriculum for each of us in order to teach us the things we most need to know. He will set before us on life what we need, not always what we like. And this will require us to accept with all our hearts...the truth that there IS divine design in each of our lives and that you have a rendezvous to keep.
Elder Neal A. Maxwell

Aim high, but do not aim so high that you totally miss the target. What really matters is that he will love you, that he will respect you, that he will honor you, that he will be absolutely true to you, that he will give you the freedom of expression and let you fly in the development of your own talents. He is not going to be perfect, but if he is kind and thoughtful, if he knows how to work and earn a living, if he is honest and full of faith, the chances are you will not go wrong, that you will be immensely happy.
 Gordon B. Hinckley

Our culture has accepted two great lies. The first one is that if you disagree with someone’s lifestyle you must fear or hate them. The second is to love someone means you agree with everything they believe or do. Both are nonsense. You don’t have to compromise convictions to be compassionate."
Rick Warren

I don't want just words. If that's all you have for me, you'd better go.
F. Scott Fitzgerald 


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Freshwater Pearls Giveaway Winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered the Freshwater Pearls Giveaway!

The winner is Caren!

(the winner was chosen randomly by my generator...but for some reason it's being retarded and not showing up on here today. Please forgive me. I was honest, I promise!!)


Email me in the next 24 hours for more information!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


I like to think I'm a country girl.
I'm not.
I like to think that cowboys are always hot.
They're not. 
But something about those cowboy hats kill me.

But the Heber Valley Stampede Rodeo on Saturday reminded me why I love me some country! (See how I even did inappropriate grammar in that sentence?) #englishnerd
I tagged along with the entire Charlesworth gang and my brother, Landon, joined us. It was his first rodeo and I was so excited for him. Especially since I have lived at these things this summer. (Hmm....sounds like I need to find a tall, hot, rodeo man? Oh, wait...) 

I stole a nice camera and was documenting the entire thing.
Once AGAIN, I am dying for a nice camera. 
I'm ready for a Nikon donation, people ;)

I'll let the pictures do most of the talking.

Landon and Kimmy. 
Jack, Dallan, Cole: The boys who participated in the Hide Race.
It was so fun to watch someone actually participating in the events!
Makes it a lot more exciting. 
Haha! The boys lifting Jack up on the hide race!

Aw. Cute brother, Landon!

I love this picture. Typical Lanny face. 

Cute little Kaydie Jo :)

Hey, look! It's me!

Cole just waiting for the outhouse. hahaha
Buckin' horses!
Nice, Cole. 

Cortni, who rode the horse, in the hide race! 

So cool. 

right before competition!

Ummm, I find a little boy who looks exactly like my nephew, Palmer.
Love this picture of Jared.

Aw! He's a cowboy, now!
Cole and some really white girl ;) 

Proud to be an American!

Such a cowboy!

Love the sunsets that happen in Utah!

Loved this horse. 


Love the silhouettes in this. 
I want a horse so bad!

Landon found his new girlfriend.
She was obsessed with him.
No, really.

Cowboy hats :)

 Yay for fun summer activities!
....that are basically over :/
Real life has officially hit. 
12 hour days: at all day teacher workshops, meetings, planning curriculum and organizing classroom. 
I come home completely exhausted. I don't have the energy to do anything except lay here and watch the Olympics.
I am feeling a lot of "negative" emotions right now (stress, anxiety, nerves, catch my drift).
But I am trying to stay grateful that school starts in 2 weeks and that I am given this wonderful opportunity in the first place. 
I'm just holding on to life right now. 
Sometimes that's we can do, right?
Like I say, never a boring day 'round these parts! (see what I did there?)