Sunday, January 24, 2016

Another wild and crazy idea...

Happy 2016 friends! There are many things about this year that make me motivated and excited...adulting is not always easy....but it has the best perks!

Let's get to the purpose of this post....  Cody knows I come up with wild and crazy start a youtube channel....wake up at 5am and go to the gym (LA Fitness) before work...   All those ideas I started to play out....and then the motivation faded.

Well...last night I came up with another wild and crazy idea! Wake up early and go to the community gym before work. Part of me feels like it's a repeat of my idea to wake up early before work and go to the gym....but this idea seems SO more doable and relaxing. Instead of having to pack a bag of toiletries for the shower and my clothes for the day, I can just come back home to shower and get ready!  A lot of people say I don't need to worry about working out because I'm running around all day at work. By the end of a typical day, I have about 15k steps.  Still...I don't feel like it's a work out.  I don't sweat...I don't have sore muscles...I don't get the post-workout feeling that I really miss!

I've been reading a lot about the importance of "taking care you" and I want to do better at that.  Not only will I feel better about myself, but I'll be happy to give even more to my husband, my family, and all of those at work.  If I close my eyes and think about what I would do in the morning, I see myself waking up, going downstairs to the gym, coming back to shower and relax in my super cozy robe for a little bit before I get ready for work.  It just seems so relaxing and crazy to think that I can actually relax and take a moment to soak in life and enjoy it before heading to work.  It's important to visualize how you want your life to be, and I need to keep visualizing how I want my morning routine to be. It just keeps me so motivated and excited to make this happen!

I'm the type that needs to set up a set-by-step plan of how things are going to go down. So I'm using this blog to (1) keep myself accountable and (2) figure out my plan!

Now if I want this to work, I have to be organized and prepared.  I already have my workout clothes ready to go out the door in the morning. I have my water in the fridge to take to the gym.

The plan..

10:00pm - G0 to sleep

5:00 - Alarm goes off/get ready for the gym

5:10 - 5:50 - Work out

5:55 - 6:10 - Turn on coffee & hop into the shower

6:10 - 6:30 -  Enjoy coffee a delicious homemade parfait...have fun with makeup....whatever I gosh darn feel like! It's MY time!! Cody is still asleep :)

6:55 - Walk out the door with Cody (yes - we leave for work at the same time and I absolutely love it!)

I am pumped for this! I'll touch base here in a week (that's my goal) with what I end up doing!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Well....I made it to summer!'s true.  
Hellooooo summer! At the beginning of the school year, the thought of summer seemed like years away and I couldn't even think about it.  This year was full of first-year teacher eye openers, tears, laughs, and celebrations.  I held my first IEP meeting by myself less than a month into the school year, and I managed to get through 11 more.  My first IEP lasted way too long because I was so detailed and I learned how to shorten them down by the last one. Student teaching taught me a lot...but nothing could have prepared me for what I had to experience and learn this past year.  Never before did I have to work with 5-6 instructional aides, let alone do my best to manage jobs and create a positive environment for them.  About a month before school got out, I found myself  balancing work and life SO much better.  I learned that it was OKAY to not get to school at 7am when school starts at 8:30.  Instead, I found myself getting to school around 7:25 - and that allowed me to sleep a bit more and get ready with Cody in the morning.  I found myself leaving earlier than when I was leaving.  Rarely would I leave work at 6pm.  It was a really good day if I left at 4:15...most days I lefts between 4:30 and 5:30.  My days turned from 11 hour days to 9 hour days...that made a huge difference in my stress levels.  ALSO, I found myself bringing less work home and I wasn't doing work till I go to bed. A big reason for this was that I developed a routine for my class, and I had been able to prep for multiple weeks in advance - which saved so much time.  Hopefully, I can use some of what I used this past year for this next year.

What's in store for this summer?  Well...I need to do lots of this.  Many 1st year teachers loose weight due to not eating because of so much work.  That did happen to me around the first couple months...but as of right now,  I am no longer at my wedding weight and that makes me sad.  I've gained some and I want to get rid of it.  That means exercise and eating better.  Eating is my downfall...I really need to find a way to be accountable. cream...chips... they're all the death of me if they get into my hands. 

Since I just cleaned my place, I feel like I should be exercising all day. 

I started tracking my steps a couple months ago and my typical step count at the end of the school day was betweek 10k and 15k.  I MUST maintain that...and I'd really like to do more since I have the time.  However, at work I'm walking around all day long because I have to.  It's much harder than I thought to exercise or go walking just for the purpose of getting steps.  One teacher I know walks 20-25k steps a day... THAT is some major stepping.  Perhaps I can get to that over the summer.  Yesterday I did really good and got to 16k by the end of the day.  Right now it's 1:30pm and I'm at 9,527 steps...that's pretty good.  I think if I go to the gym later or do some walking around my place, I'll get to 16k again.  16k is better than most of my days at work too!  

What else do I have planned for this summer?  

Take a guess....

Cody and I are going to Texas! Unfortunately, we not going to see this pool...but we are going to be flying to Dallas and doing some mini roadtripping down south to Austin. This was planned pretty recently - even though we were hoping to do this over this past Spring Break. We are SO SO excited about this. We're going to meet up with some of Cody's friends in Dallas too.  I've been to Texas before (Austin, Houstin, and San Antonio), but Cody has never been.  Why are we going? Lots of people have asked me that.  Honestly, we want to go to just check it out.  We love what we see when we watch HGTV and from what we know of it, Texas living seems pretty nice.  Not only do we want to see the major sites of the cities we're visiting, but we also want to check out what the locals do too.  I have no idea how I'll feel about Texas when we get back, but I'm jut excited to travel somewhere new with my hubby.  It's our first vacation since our honeymoon last July! 

That's basically the major plans for the summer!  Our 1 year anniversary is in about a month (I can't believe it!), and we'll just be around here for that.  This past year has just been a whirlwind since we got back from our honeymoon.  I honestly feel like we never stopped moving.  Our Texas trip will be an awesome break for us to just relax...and melt in the heat. 

I am hoping to do make some small posts about my cheap finds over the summer (I am all into finding crazy drug store make up deals) and maybe things that I'm obsessing over at home.  I have a few to share with you...but I'll just show your in picture form because I'm feeling the urge to go outside and get some more steps on my tracker :) 

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Strawberry huller b-day gift - I like strawberries..hated prepping them. Now life is easy-peasy.

Bath and Body Works sale....I bought a couple sprays for 3:50 each (reg $14).  I want to go back and get MORE!!

This is the BEST polish (amazing brush...goes on smooth)...and it's CHEAP!  I have 4 colors and I want more. I don't do buy 1, get one 50% off deals... but if I see 40% off or BOGO on these in the near future, I'm buying!

 This stuff is amazing!  I haven't drank Diet Pepsi/Coke since I bought these at Costco. YUM!  

Sunday, January 4, 2015

2 weeks have passed...

Two weeks of no work or school have passed for the both of us. Cody goes back to reality of work and school tomorrow (I have one week left...which will involve hours of school prep) Enjoying winter break at home together has been so relaxing, and I find that the best memories of break were simple routines I didn't even think much about in the moment.  I'm going to miss making dinner in my pjs...eating that dinner with Cody in front of the tv...and then snuggling next to Cody until I felt like transferring to bed.  As cheesy and ridiculous as this may sound, I find myself getting emotional thinking about how much I'm going to miss those moments as the work and school responsibilities officially resume.  Our first holiday season living together AND being married may not have been filled with many glamorous moments...we went out to dinner at Texas Roadhouse during the first weekend of lunch at Chipotle one afternoon....had dinner at PF Changs on New Year's Eve and then spent the evening on the couch... Being someone who  likes to go out on the weekends, I found myself just wanting to be home with Cody.  I call him "my burly" (because of his beard!), and after this break, I'm committed to finding ways to make these at-home cozy moments with my burly a priority. I guess I should let the County know that I'm changing my address to Bnsf train...cause he's never "home."

Technically  I have another week to lounge around (so thankful!), but I feel like reality is back for me as well.  I keep having to remind myself to calm down and not overwhelm myself with the work I want to do before the students come back to school.  I have plans for going back to the classroom at least 3 times this week...but I know I can't be in the classroom for so long that I drive myself nuts before school even starts again! Lots of teachers don't go back to school at all during the entire break, so I should feel accomplished knowing I will be there at least 3 days! The first half of the school year I was overridden with work-related anxiety, and it was getting a lot better as winter break got closer.  I am going to work hard setting realistic goals for myself of what I want to get accomplished each week, so I my anxiety doesn't get the best of me.  I know it wont' be easy, but one thing I will always look forward to is coming home to my burly!!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Confessions of a First Year Teacher: Made It to Thanksgiving Break!

I'm sitting on our couch....eating microwaved mac and cheese leftovers form Applebee's,...and watching the AMAs (American Music Awards).  Not worrying about work tomorrow and what I have planned for the day...or not planned for the day, for that matter.  It feels amazing...and for most teachers, a week of no work is SO needed by now.

This Thanksgiving I find myself being so thankful for certain people/things in life, primarily because they have helped me get through the past 3 months.   I was always told that student teaching and schooling will never prepare you for the job of being the teacher of your own classroom.  Boy, is that true.  Looking back, student teaching was so carefree and easy! I wasn't responsible for all the paperwork...lesson planning...managing the business...yes the "business" of my classroom.  During my student teaching, I always did my best to ask my master teachers about their strategies for work-life balance - because I knew that would be a major struggle for me.  The two pieces advice I heard was "Always take your lunch" and "Set a time for you to go home and put work aside."  The first piece of advice has not happened....up until now, I still have not had lunch in the teacher's lounge once during my students' lunch, mainly because there's no way I can leave the number of kids I have with only 2 instructional aides (while other aides are on their lunch).  The second piece of advice is struggle as well...but the past two week's I've been getting better at it.  There's just ALWAYS work to be done...whether it means create materials that I think will engage my students, prepare for upcoming IEPs, write e-mails, figure out aide schedules....there is no end! Most first-year teachers have their moments of emotional breakdowns because of the stress and feeling of quitting...and I've definitely had my fair share of them.  My poor husband has to bear with my ups and downs caused by work...and I share so much of it with my mom on the way home from work.  I love my mom and our long talks on my drive home from work! To sum it up ....  teaching is so hard!  For me, it's hard not only physically, but emotionally and mentally.  I love my students so much and I want to do so much for them.  There's simply not enough time to do it all during the "contractual hours", and there's' not enough time in the world to do what I or many other teachers want to do for their students.  I think that's why so many teachers become so stressed with their job because of their desire to simply do good and what is best.  Still, it's important that teachers (like myself) take time for themselves too! This week I'm going to do my best to do just that....and find ways to relax AND do some prep for when I go back to work.


Who Am I Thankful For After The Past 3 Months?

My Husband Cody
          Thank you for.....
      • waiting for me to go with you to gas at Costco and make a run to Walmart on the weekdays - you know I'd just keep on working, if I stayed home
      • dealing with my emotional breakdowns, and being prepared for another one to come, even when I say "I'm doing really good today, don't you think?!" You know me so well.
      • Cooking dinner on nights when I'm way too tired and exhausted
      • Not caring about the little diversity we have when it comes to dinner....rotating 2 prepared meals throughout the week is the easiest thing for us at the moment
      • Finding your way to understanding when I come home with a new pair of boots (retail therapy is so helpful sometimes!)
      • Giving me helpful advice and tough love when I need to stop my negative self-talk 
      • Surprising me with peppermint flavored coffee a couple weeks ago!
      • Sending me encouraging texts at work when I've been feeling a bit stressed and unsure about myself
      • Not getting too upset when I buy things for my classroom....I don't spend a lot compared to other teachers too!
      • Bringing my back to reality when I begin feeling like my life is determined by my job
      • Simply loving me and always being there when I just want to squeeze you...because you know how much I love to give hugs when I'm feeling stressed/anxious, and you're the only person I could ever squeeze over and over again!!
My parents and brother
               Thank you for.......
      • Taking my almost-daily phone calls on my way home from work that last at least 30 minutes
      • Being such great distraction for me from work during the weekends...I'm so glad we live fairly close by so we can visit each other!
      • Donating amazing goodies to my classroom
      • Doing what you always do to help me when I'm stressed
      • Visiting my classroom last week!

The staff at my school
               Thank you for......
      • Being SO welcoming 
      • Understanding the difficulties I face as a first year teacher
      • Always lending a helping hand
      • Reassuring me of my efforts I put into the classroom

What have I been thankful for during the past 3 months?
      • The power of prayer 
      • Hearing parents say "He's so excited to come to school in the morning!" and "Thank you for taking care of our babies."  
      • Where I live....moving to Riverside was a choice Cody and I made because we didn't want to spend so much money to live in Orange County.  We found an amazing place at an amazing price, somehow we were able to find jobs out this way too. Thank you God for blessing us with a home and jobs out in in this area before we got married. 
      • my marriage
      • SLEEP!

Well that was a long post....and I'm impressed if someone actually read it in its entirety! Time to stop typing because I tend to type way too much...and Cody thinks that when I type this much, it means I'm working. He just called me out a few minutes ago...but I told him "I'm blogging, not working!!"  Success! :) 

Saturday, August 30, 2014

First Post Since the Wedding!

Yes, this wedding website has turned into our family blog.  I've been waiting for this day!

Life since the wedding has been non-stop to say the least.  The day after the wedding we went on our honeymoon to Kauai. We got home early Friday morning, then the next day we went to my college friend's wedding. That next Monday Cody started work again, and I had one day to be a "housewife" before I had to go to Common Core training for my new teaching position.  I had 3 days of full-day training that week, and then on Thursday I got the keys to my classroom.

After that week, I had one week to prepare my classroom and becoming familiar with my student's information and the first day of school started the next week. For me, it's been at least 12 hour work days Monday through Friday, and even on the weekends I'm working for at least 10 hours.  Being a teacher is not easy - and it doesn't matter what kind of teacher you are, whether you are teaching general education or special education.   With the new Common Core, everything is so different for EVERYONE!  I see the hard work and stress that long-time teachers are going through every day right now, and in a way, it makes me feel like I'm not alone in feeling overwhelmed with everything.

Here are some pictures of my classroom before school began and after the first week :)

Back to School Night! See my sign in table :) 

To add to the busy-ness of the Horner household, Cody and I recently started a new semester of school. Cody is busy with school work when he gets home from work, and when I get home from work, I am typically doing more work work - school work for me seems to left until Friday evening.  I'm fine with that though.  I actually finished my homework for the week last night!  I was quite proud of myself.  Cody made our first meal with our slow cooker last Sunday (pulled BBQ pork) and it lasted us ALL week.  I didn't have to do any cooking - which was awesome! I dont' know how I would have had the time to cook....there was just no time! This week ended really well, and I can say that I held a successful Back to School night for the families of my classroom and I am finally feeling like my classroom is developing a good routine that works for everyone - me, my staff, and my students!

This is the first weekend I feel like I am able to take a break from my life as a least for one day out of this three day weekend. This morning I woke up....had bagel with Panera berry cream cheese that Cody got for me from one of his work breakfasts (YUM!)....deposited my first pay check *cha-ching!*....browsed the Kohl's for the first time in forever *really wanted to buy some boots*....and then stopped at Hobby Lobby.  I didn't buy a thing - but I totally could have, if I let myself! We're trying to save for a home, so extra extra spending cannot happen.  Still...Cody was so sweet last weekend and ran to Michael's to buy me some lamination sheets for my laminator :)  I was so stressed about not being able to laminate stuff for my students that he just couldn't handle it. I think the purchase was more for his sanity than for mine :) With work being so overwhelming, I've been an emotional roller coaster at home and my poor husband has been having to deal with me.  He's so amazing!

Well, it's time for Cody and I to make a Costco run - we're having the family over tomorrow for dinner!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Welcome to Our Wedding Website! The big day is July 19, 2014!

Wedding Countdown Ticker

Cody and Diana are so excited about this very exciting time in their lives.  Here you can take a look at their slideshow in the Gallery, learn more about the couple, as well as find important information about their special, upcoming day.  Keep checking back for updates, and if you'd like, please sign their website guest book!

Special shout out to Koman Photography for the amazing engagement photography! Thank you so much!