Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Fall Fun (and Halloweeeeeen!)

When Sylvia was born, I really thought long and hard about whether to send her to elementary school where I teach.  Pros: convenience, communication, exposure to diversity.  Cons: "teacher's kid," too much time together, exposure to potential volatile behaviors that would not be an issue in private school.  And of course the money was also an issue.  Then, we moved to Northern Kentucky and I landed a job at the most family friendly school in the country.  My principal loves my kids, but...get this...she loves ALL of the kids as if they were her own.  Our building is a huge FAMILY and many teachers send their kids to school there.  Sylvia gets to be a FALCON where every adult loves her because she is a KID, not because she is my kid.  Everyone will require nothing but her best and everyone will hold her accountable.  I was honored to welcome her into the Falcon family this year and I thoroughly enjoy getting ready together in the mornings, riding to school together, giving her a hug during lunch, and chatting about school all evening after I get home.  I can't believe I ever doubted that this was the best decision for our family!

Grandparent's Night!

But enough about the Big One.  Let's move on.  One of the most amazing and life changing things has happened - ALBERT IS WALKING!  Finally.  And, just like I knew he would, he doesn't slow down for two seconds.  One day he just UPPED AND WALKED, like he'd been doing it his whole life. 

I had a ton of fun visiting with Laura and Emily and meeting the Petersiks again at Books By the Banks!

I've waited a long time to share this movie with Sylvia.  She enjoyed "The Worst Witch" almost as much as my friends and I did back in the day.  Margot loved it, too!  If you haven't seen it, you're missing some spectacular 1980's special effects and some thrilling song lyrics.  Check it out.  You won't regret it.

Margot, Bristol and Sylvia on the train for Jack's birthday!  They had a great time, but I think the moms had a better time...

Sylvia designed her own service project: making beaded bracelets out of pipe cleaners to give to some residents at the nursing home across the street from our school.  I wholeheartedly approved because for one thing, it's good for her heart, but for another thing....she used up all the craft crap that's been lying around our house for months!  Win-win!

 My mom and Jay threw another great Halloween party with hot dogs on the fire, bingo, bobbing for eyeballs and tons of treats and prizes!

 My little dude in overalls gets me every time!  He is so stinking cute and he's starting to really bubble with personality.  He answers questions now and plays jokes on us.  He knows what a dinosaur says and what a kitty cat says, but sometimes we ask, "What's a kitty cat say?" and he screams, "RAAAWWWRRR!" and he CRACKS UP because he knows it's wrong and he things it is just hilarious. He also loves to climb in the closet.  It's a fun trick.

Okay...Margot.  This girl.  She's been seeing Darth Vader everywhere and Sylvain let her check out a Lego Star Wars DVD from the library.  It has 2 twenty-minute episodes that include a silly, bumbling Darth Vader that makes her laugh and laugh.  She has decided that Darth Vader is her very best friend and she begged to be Darth Vader for Halloween.  Move over Hello Kitty!  As a closet Star Wars fanatic, I did not discourage the attraction.  Okay, I may have actively encouraged her a tiny bit.  Sylvia asked her, "Why do you like Darth Vader? He's a BAD guy?" and Margot said, "But Sylvia...Darth Vader is POWERFUL!"  And that pretty much sums up Margot to a T.  
That FACE!
 My class Halloween party was one for the books this year!  Sylvain dropped my three kiddos off so they could party with us.  Fun was had by all!

Rebel fighter, Obi Wan, two Darth Vaders (both girls! yes!!), Princess Leia, Chewbacca
 Here's my Star Wars offspring right before trick-or-treat.  They LOVED their costumes and I could not contain my delight!  There was much squealing.  Baby Yoda?  Tiny Darth Vader?  Bun head Leia?  Forget it.  Cute overload.

TWO baby Yodas!  Johnathan and Albert.  BFF's for LIFE!

The force is strong with this one!
Since Halloween was on a Saturday, we threw a gigantic kid party before, during and after trick-or-treat.  Our house looked like a tornado hit, but MAN did we all have fun!  My aunts from New York came to town for the weekend JUST to see the kids dressed up and having fun.  It was great to see that whole side of the family on such a fun night!

Uncle Kurt and The Carrot Hoarder

The New Yorkers got their baby fix!

Kirt and Dianne brought Baby Everly!

Mamie Brigitte spent the night.
I didn't get any good pictures of all the kids on the couch, but get this: between the Reynolds, the Staubauchs, the Hodges, the Gurleys and the Fasciottos, we had eleven kids under the age of SIX in this house.  It was glorious!

Sylvia finished up her soccer season right before Halloween weekend with TWO GOALS this year!  She's already a million times better at soccer than her Mama.  Her ballet school was very gracious to let us wait until soccer was over before she started back in her ballet class, so she was really excited to go to ballet last week.  The best part?  It's a class for 3-5 year olds, so....Margot gets to go to ballet, too!  To the SAME CLASS!  At the SAME TIME!  With the SAME RECITAL!!  That will likely never happen again, so I'm capitalizing on the opportunity.  Besides, Margot loves ballet and has been chomping at the bit to start.  I was going to wait until she was four, but come on.  You can't beat ballerina sisters!

Finally, I give you my classroom door.  I'm just going to ride this Star Wars train for the rest of the year.  We had a lesson on "The Force," or things you can use to make your year amazing: Friendships, Opinions, Rights, Choices, Energy.  Then, each kid drafted a sentence that started with "I can use the FORCE to..." and they wrote some awesome things!  We have bully fighters, peace makers, leaders, cleaners, name it!  They chose their favorite character, wrote down their sentence, and I slapped it on the door.  I traced some lettering and a light saber for the sign, printed a couple small posters and VOILA!  Best door ever.  My favorite one in 12 years of teaching.  
It helps to have an awesome class.  Look at these darling little Falcons!  They won the AR trophy for being spectacular readers.  They are truly spectacular in every way!  I love them to death.  My job is hard, but I get to spend every day with these smiles.  We have way too much fun!

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