Friday, March 21, 2014

sparkly eyes, cupcakes, and the end of an era

Graduation is drawing ever closer. in almost one month exactly i will be walking across the stage to receive my diploma. With that day comes the end of my student teaching experience, the end of my BYU student experience, the end of my student days; it's a really weird realization.

i almost don't want student teaching to end. i've loved the opportunity to teach preschool and third grade. i haven't talked much about my experiences teaching here yet. My first placement was at the preschool on campus. i absolutely loved getting to work with all of those four-year-olds every day. i learned so much from Miss Dorie, Anne, and the other teachers there. i was able to see a truly developmentally appropriate preschool setting and learn how to best teach those children.

Currently i'm about half-way through my third grade placement. The differences between preschool and third grade are many but they still require the same thoughtfulness in instruction. Even though they can sit and listen to a lesson doesn't mean that they should only be taught that way; they still learn best when they're actively participating. i try my best to keep this in mind as i prepare each lesson and each day.

Some days feel longer and seem to be more tiring than others; but it's always worth it. i was told by my facilitator yesterday that i'm simply excelling in my teaching and that i have a wonderful teacher presence (the thing i've actually been most nervous about). He told me my constant smile and sparkly eyes help the students know i truly care about them which has helped develop the mutual respect i have with these children. it was simply the most wonderful compliment he could have given me. Definitely made my week.

Things just seemed to fall into place this week as well. i got my email today about the Teacher Work Sample saying "Hello Emme, I wanted to let you know that you have passed your Teacher Work Sample. Congratulations! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!" My cohort friends and i have been waiting for three weeks to hear the results of the TWS; from the sounds of it everyone has passed so far. The relief it brings is unbelievable. One step closer to graduation and the next step in life.

The family is making arrangements to come out for my graduation and i couldn't be more excited for them to come out and visit. Some of them will be here for a whole week!

i've also decided that i would like to plan an adventure. i was in the midst of making cupcakes today when i received a very unexpected Facebook message. An indiana friend from over a year and a half ago messaged me. He and i met when i visited indiana with Miss Momo back in 2012. We met, we clicked, we really liked each other. Things didn't end up working out between us and i hadn't talked to him since. So you can imagine my surprise to see him messaging me out of the blue. Apparently he'd been wanting to say hi to me for a few weeks and finally did. And you know what? i'm really glad he did. it was nice to hear that life was treating him well; just a good friend conversation. While we were chatting the topic of adventures came up with my graduation. i mentioned maybe New York which he fully supported. That and Niagara Falls. Then i remembered Carlos' Bakery out in Hoboken which i have been dying to visit. So i "planned" an adventure. Sometime in the next year i'm going to make it happen.

Today was the first time i've made cupcakes in months. i think i only made cupcakes one other time since the Fireman and i began dating. Time and energy for cupcakes were just never on my side throughout that relationship; not because of him. With spending time with the Fireman, student teaching, working, my church calling...i just never felt up to it. But being freshly single with time to spare now that i'm only student teaching i have all kinds of time now! And it feels like home to be spending it baking my favorite cupcakes. Check out those beauties!

i have a new favorite artist this week. Jasmine Thompson is another cover artist and i'm in love with her style. it's got the Ingrid Michaelson, Christina Perri, Julia Sheer vibe to it. Take a listen. it's simply fab.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

the point

i don't quite know what the point of this post is. Except to say that in all honesty, i'm doing great. it's been fairly hit or miss over the last month what with the dating aspect of my life.

Last weekend was rough. Doubts swirled and stormed and created new doubts and nothing i was doing (aside from career) really felt right and i couldn't figure it out. i would pray about an answer and then doubt my confirmation and it was driving me crazy. After some sound advice i realized why. This led to a complete change in the way i viewed my prayers and following answers. That led to the metaphorical weights on my shoulders being lifted and the knot in my stomach disappearing.

And for once after what felt like forever (but i'm sure was not) i felt light. Just...good. And i knew it would all turn out ok. (it helps that he took the finalness of everything so well).

i just..i get it now. And i understand the things i need to work on to truly be the person i want to be. Not that i'm a bad person now, but i want to be and can be so much more and i can see it now.

So i guess that's it, the point. That i understand now. it's a beautiful revelation, really. A light one. And it helps.