Friday, June 22, 2012

Friday's Letters [2]

Friday's Letters

Dear week: I really love you, do you know why? Because this is the LAST week of Michael's job back at school. Which means that tomorrow he comes home for good, and we are done with the long distance thing. This makes me very, VERY happy!

Dear Michael: Thank you for putting up with me lately; I know I haven't been the easiest person to deal with, what with all the current stress. Thank you for working so hard to give us great things in the future. And congrats on your new career, I'm so proud of you! 

Dear future apartment: I am so glad that we found you. I was worried we were going to have to settle for something that did not have everything we wanted, but with you we did not have to. You have plenty of space, and the kitchen and dining room I was hoping for. I can't wait to move in come August, I hope you're ready for us!

Dear life: You really kind of suck some times; nothing personal. Knowing someone that I used to spend time with when I was a bit younger just died at the age of eighteen really makes me upset. That really isn't long enough to live, and I don't understand why you do those things sometimes.

Dear money: You suck most of the time (aside from, you know, when I actually have some). My account is dwindling down and that stresses me out quite a bit! I haven't even been spending much, but I seem to always be short.

Dear job hunt: You are still stressing me out quite a bit. Every time I think I have a lead, I have to continue to wait forever to hear anything. I think the waiting is the worst. I am trying to stay positive though, no matter how tough that might be.

Dear June: I can't believe you're almost over already! Though, I am very excited that tomorrow marks only three months until the wedding.



Thursday, June 21, 2012

Book Chat (the books I've been meaning to read)

I just found this link up over at Sweet Green Tangerine by reading one of my daily blogs, and thought that the book chat link up was right up my alley. This week is all about those books that we have been wanting to read forever but have yet to, and why. My "to read" list is pretty long, and seems to continue to grow but there are definitely some books I've been wanting to read for quite some time but still haven't gotten to them...

The Books: 

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
I don't actually own this book yet, but I really do want it. When the movie came out, it looked great, but it took forever before I finally saw it. Once I did, I was in love with it. I know that the book is bound to be better than the movie, since it usually does work that way, so I'm eager to eventually pick up my copy.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak 
I bought this book awhile ago when our Borders was going out of business. It was on sale for a great price and it seemed really interesting. Unfortunately, when I got home with it, I put it on my book shelf which is where it has remained since then. I really do look forward to finally reading it, though.

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
I have tried several times to pick up this book and read it, and I really, really want to. I've seen the movie of this one as well and really enjoyed it and had no doubt that the book had to be incredible based on the story line and details. Plus, I always love books that have interesting children as the lead characters (think The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time). I love the way the author changes up the text to go along with the way the character thinks and really hope I'll eventually be able to get through it.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
This is another book that I don't own yet, but I have heard and read a lot about, and it looks very interesting (though slightly depressing). I know that it has a movie as well, but I have decided to avoid watching it until I have read the book since it's such an intense plot line. I'm sure that I will finally pick it up eventually.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Believe it or not, I have never read anything by Jane Austen. I know, I know, that's horrible! I pride myself on being such a book lover that I feel like I should have already read most of her works. However, I have read the first couple of pages of this one on my E-reader and already struggled with it. I'm planning to eventually force myself to get through it or one of her others though.

These are only five of many books that I would love to eventually pick up and actually read. I have a number of books on my shelf that I have still yet to read (oops!), but will eventually get to them. What about you? Are there any books you have been meaning to read? Have you read any of these and loved/hated them? Any book suggestions? 



Wednesday, June 20, 2012

7 Questions [2]

Linking up with Gentri Lee again today for 7 questions once again. Head on over and check out her blog and link up as well! 

1. What do you do when you're sick? (Do you act like a baby? Tough it out? Have any weird cravings? Cry?)
It really depends on what is wrong. I feel sick pretty frequently, and it's pretty frustrating. I have blood drawn several times and everything and my doctor has yet to find anything wrong with me, but there clearly is. I do worry that we will have to do some more serious tests, which is why I usually avoid going to the doctor. If I feel really bad, I do tend to cry (especially if I end up getting sick), usually I just lay around and hope it gets better though.

2. What do you do to find motivation when you feel you've lost it?
Usually I talk to Michael if I'm feeling down on myself or unmotivated. He is usually pretty good at reminding me that things will be okay, and sometimes they just take time. Occasionally writing or listening to music helps me relax as well, though, and that usually helps me find my motivation again.

3. Do you wish time away or do you savor every moment?
I try to savor every moment, I think everyone likes to try to, but it isn't always easy. Sometimes I find myself looking into the future towards important moments, but I know there is a lot of lost time between now and then if I focus too much on the future things.

4. If you could be any mythological creature, what would you be, and why?
Does a wizard could as a mythological creature? For my purposes, yes it does. I'm a Harry Potter nerd, and think it would be awesome to have magical powers and attend Hogwarts. It's really JK Rowling's fault for making everything seem so believable!

5. What is your current biggest weakness and are you working on fixing it?
Stress is definitely my major weakness at the moment. While it does not take much to stress me out in general, I'm definitely feeling it right now with the job hunt going on. I'm trying to relax and stay positive, but it is still pretty difficult. I just want to teach next year, that doesn't seem like too much to ask, right?

6. How do you greet someone when meeting them for the first time?
Depends on who they are, and why we are meeting. Usually something like "Hi, I'm Tiffany. It's nice to meet you." Pretty generic, I think.

7. How do you grocery shop? (Do you write up a list? Go in with no idea what you're looking for? Have meal plans? Bring your own shopping bags?)
I don't really have to worry about grocery shopping right now since I'm still living with my parents, but usually we are pretty good about creating grocery lists before we go to the store and everything. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


I have never been one to wear too many accessories, unless it is a scarf or a special occasion. Actually my love for scarves did not even come into play until this year, and now I own SO many and love them all. However, I would really love to learn how to accessorize better. I see women that are dressed up so nice and their whole outfit goes together, and that's casual for them! That's what I want. I think that Charming Charlie will probably be a big help in making this happen. I did buy a couple things today at the mall that I'm pretty thrilled about.

My brother's fiance and I spent a long time looking around Charming Charlie this past weekend, and she bought this same fedora with the coral fabric. I really loved it, but did not want to have the same exact one, so I went with the white. It matches everything, and I really did not think you could beat the price.

I can't find the second thing that I bought today, but I got a scarf from H&M. It is black with green apples, because what teacher doesn't need a scarf with apples? It was only five dollars, and I was thrilled that I managed to find it in the sale bin. I think it will help make some work outfits a little but cuter, and add a fun element.

Now, since I'm currently pretty broke and could not buy everything that I really wanted (like a billion different shoes I loved at Payless. They have their BOGO sale going on right now, if you're a Payless fan as well), here are some of the accessories that I would love to eventually have.

Loving this cross-body bag. I have been using the same, small Coach cross-body purse for awhile now, that it might be nice to have something that is a little bit bigger again that way I can fit some more in it. I really want a watch right now, too. A bright one, like this aqua one. Seriously, Charming Charlie has the best stuff, you should check one out if you have a store close to you.

Now, I'll leave you with an outfit that I'm digging. I like to think that I'm getting a better fashion sense, and I really am pretty excited about that!

Happy Tuesday!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Blog Star: Hi, I'm Tiffany!

There is a link up going on over at Mrs. Monologues, and I have decided to go ahead and join in on the fun. It's a simple link up and a great way to meet new bloggers, so go check it out!

So, here is a little bit about me:

- I was born Iowa
- But I have lived in Texas since I was seven
- I have two older brothers, they're pretty cool
- I'm engaged to a wonderful guy named Michael
- We get married in September, I'm pretty excited!
- I already think a lot about how I want our apartment to look, and we haven't even decided on one yet (nothing like doing things out of order).
- I graduated from college last month with my Bachelor's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies (yes, that is a fancy way to say I was an education major).
- I hope to have my own classroom next year, I would really prefer middle school level
- I'm a pretty big baseball fan, especially when it comes to the Texas Rangers.
- I have an addiction to shoes, I can't help it
- The only credit card I have in my name is one for Victoria's Secret
- I'm an animal lover, especially when it comes to giraffes.

Well, that's a bit about me. Feel free to link up and share as well! :D


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Interview #1

As most of you know, I have been working very hard to get interviews and things for open teaching positions for the next school year, and it has not been easy at all. I filled out a million different applications for districts and then sat around waiting for calls for interviews. In the meantime, friends from school were posting all over Facebook about how they were getting tons of interviews and I could not help but wonder what I was doing wrong.

You see, at school they did not give us many tips about what to do once you're actually done with college. They never told us how to go about trying to get the jobs and everything. They told us not to email principals, that they would come to us. They could not have been more wrong, though.

I went to dinner with two friends last week, who both happen to be in my wedding coming up very soon. We met in middle school and have quite a bit of history and have been friends since that point. We ended up at the same college, and the three of us graduated the same day. It was wonderful, and I enjoyed going to dinner and talking to them. That day they had both had interviews though (for the same job, eek!) and told me that they had been emailing principals like crazy, and that was how they were getting their interviews. Boy, did I feel behind!

The next day I began emailing principals. It took awhile, since most of the districts have sixty plus schools, which means sixty plus principals that needed to get emails. I was feeling pretty good, even with all of the "Thank you for your interest, but we do not have any openings." responses coming back in reply. However, some asked for my resume or said they would keep my information on file.

Then yesterday, I got a call. The lady assured me that they did not have any current positions but wanted to have a pool of people in case something did open up. I believe I was the first person they called, since they gave me the earliest time this morning, and I was thrilled despite not having any openings at the moment.

I'm not sure that the interview could have gone much better. I left the office feeling wonderful about the whole thing. The principal was nice, as was the secretary. He loved that I was about fifteen minutes early (though I was sitting in the car for about fifteen before that as well). We talked, and he seemed happy with my answers, and at the end he told me he was very impressed with me, which definitely made me feel great. He said a position might just open up, one I'm certified for. I love the school and it's close to the area we want to live, so it would be great.

This is just interview number one, and while it might not be too promising since there are no current openings, I'm already feeling a bit better. Hopefully this will be the start of many more interviews and a future teaching job!


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Engagement Pictures - Take 2

After Michael proposed, it did not take us long to pick our wedding day. Everything had been on September 23 for us, and it just happened that the September 23rd that followed our college graduation fell on a weekend. Obviously it was just met to be. Since we had the date picked, we had exactly two years to decide everything else. Since my parents were paying for most of it, we sat down and decided what we wanted to spend more money on, and where we were going to try to pinch. We decided photography was not something we wanted to go cheap on. It was difficult, though.

I don't know how many of you have had to look for photographers for weddings and things, but they do not come cheap. We went to bridal shows and did tons of research but could not find anything on our budget. So, when we figured out that our wedding coordinator from our venue did photography as well, and it was affordable. We assumed that it would work out okay, and she would know where to get good pictures at the venue.

During the summer we had her do some pictures out at a house with a barn and what not, which we thought would be nice at the time. She did not take any time to get to know us though, and simply just made everything really pose-y. It turned out, once we got the pictures back, that she did not edit her pictures at all. This was not something she told us before we agreed to use her.

I spent the time after that being very upset by the pictures. A lot of my friends were engaged and having pictures done, and I was always so jealous. Then one of my friends' pictures posted, and when I looked at them, it led me to the photographer's blog. I just had to ask my friend for the information. Within a couple weeks we had book Mary, and were thrilled that she was doing a special so we could redo our engagement pictures.

About three weeks ago,  we met her in the Arts Bishop District and had our pictures done, and she just posted our blog post yesterday. (see, I told you I had more exciting news!) I am thrilled with them, could not be happier, seriously. She is sending the disc of pictures to us and she said there are about 300 total, so I'm looking forward to going through all of them! 

Anyway, check out her blog post about us HERE and look around her blog some more. If you're from the Dallas/Fort Worth area, then she's definitely a wonderful choice! 

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Today Was a Good Day...

Honestly, it's very exciting for me to be able to title a post with that. Lately I've been feeling so, well, "blah" for lack of a better term. With Michael living away right now to work back at school and not having any calls about interviews, I've been a little bit down. Sometimes a lot bit, but that's neither here nor there. Today was a good day though, a very good day.

I went and took my generalist certification exam bright and early yesterday. I got there at about 7:15, since I had to be there by 7:30, and got to start my test pretty much right away. They give five hours to take the test, but luckily it only took me about two. I don't think I could keep my sanity if I took a test that actually needed five hours! They said that it would take two to seven days for my score to post, but then I got the email this morning telling me that my grades had posted and I could log on to look.

Now, let me tell you, I was not feeling very good about this test at all. My specialty is Language Arts and Reading. I took the test for that before my student teaching when it was required and had no problems, but this test had math on it. MATH. I am horrible at math. It definitely had me stressed out. I sat staring at a couple of questions for a good ten minutes and then realized I had no idea how to even make an educated guess on the questions. Luckily, I did better at guessing that I thought and only missed four out of the twenty-eight math questions.

So, I passed the test! and by quite a bit actually, which was pretty shocking! I am incredibly thrilled that I won't have to take it again since it does cost one hundred and twenty dollars each time (ridiculous!). Now, I just have to take my ESL test and I can have my teaching certificate updated and update the billion job applications I have out there. I'm really hoping having my generalist certification will open up many more opportunities for me.

So, then there was more good news! I called the lady I did my initial interview for the school district I would really love to work in. You interview with her, and then she can help get your name out there when there are openings that you qualify for. I called her to update her on my test and what not, and since she said to just occasionally check in with her.

I am sure glad that I did!

Apparently the principal from the school I did my student teaching with has an English opening, and that is what I would really love. She had already passed my information to him this morning, and he had already mentioned really wanting to hire me if he had an opening. I'm hoping that this will turn into an interview and some possibilities. That would be a very nice thing!

One more GREAT thing happened this morning, too, but I think I'll hold off on that until tomorrow. Keep you on your toes....Oh, alright. I'll give you one hint.

Until tomorrow!


Friday, June 1, 2012

Book Club Friday [1]

I would really like to get back into reading some more this summer, and it seems like a good way to use some time since I currently don't have too much going on this summer. So, I've decided to begin doing the Book Club Friday link up. 

This week I'm sharing: 


The Synopsis:
Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.
Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.
Minny, Aibileen's best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody's business, but she can't mind her tongue, so she's lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.
Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.
In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women—mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends—view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope, The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don't.

My Thoughts:
I know that a lot of people have already read this novel, especially since the movie has been out for awhile. I was one of those people who actually had not heard anything about this book until I saw the previews for the movie, and then I had some serious interest. (I'm a huge fan of Emma Stone, so I figured I would at least see the movie). I decided to see the movie first, worried that if I read the book before it that I wouldn't enjoy the movie at all. I LOVED the movie and own it now, but I was so busy with student teaching and everything that reading for pleasure was not really a possibility. However, now that summer came around I finally had time to pick up the book again after purchasing it shortly after the movie released and I saw it (twice).

Now, I already had no doubt that I would love the book based on the movie and all the positive raves it got, but oh my goodness did I love it. One of the best books I have ever read, I would say. Stockett is an incredible author, and I had no trouble looking in on the lives of the main characters. She made it so historically realistic that I felt sick that our country was like that (and still has so many problems with it). I was worried that the movie would ruin it, but they were both done so well. Things had to be changed of course, but it's hard to fit a whole book into a two hour movie. Anyway, I enjoyed the book immensely and would recommend it to anyone. And that Celia Foote, she's something else!