My class this year is completely different than the one I had last year. First off, I do not have my own little Ben in the same room with me anymore and I miss him. :( He is now in the first grade next door to me, and I am very happy that I get to see him throughout the day as we have lunch together, as well as art and recess. His teacher is wonderful though, and she has worked out a little deal with him that when he is finished his work or feels sad, he does this winking thing with his eye (kind of looks like he has something in his eye when he does it!:) and she lets him pop into my room to give me a hug, or two, or three. It makes for a very pleasant, mommy-building moment for me. It is nice to know he still needs me.
Another thing that is different with my class is how little the all seem to me. Yes, I know they were little last year too, but I am referring to maturity levels, not height. The first week of school had me scratching my head because I could not figure out why they did not know all this stuff, but then I had to remember that I am coming out of an entire year of teaching my old class and they started out at this very point too. I have to be careful not to compare the ones just starting out with the ones that finished last June. There are steps I have to take as a teacher to prepare these six children to get to that same point the others were at the end of the year. It is a process, and some always take longer than others to get there, but I need to rewiA graduate kindergarten and enter first grade.
Their personalities are completely different too. I have some funny little people in my class, as I did last year, but there are a few that make me laugh with their silly, and sometimes brilliant, replies. One small guy is quite brilliant in all that he says. He has a remarkable memory for what his parents have taught him, and even knows what those cloud lines behind airplanes in the sky are called! He will often blurt out some fact or random statement that blows me away. I love giving him his Bible tests because he knows his Bible stories so well and comes out with answers that are beyond his years.
It has been a crazy week though. Last week was a four day week, so this week seemed extra long. Thursday felt like it should have been Friday and I was ready for the weekend to arrive. It all started last Sunday, even before the craziness began. I was cleaning up after lunch on Sunday and put all my clean Tupperware away in the cupboard. Later on that night I was looking for some leftover meat from Saturday's dinner, but could not find it anywhere. I figured maybe someone else had eaten it or I had accidently thrown it away. I forgot about it and went about my week until Thursday when I was looking for something to put my lunch in for the next day. I pulled out a rather heavy storage container and to my surprise, found that leftover meat I had been looking for a few days before. It was completely green and fuzzy. a, and turned my stomach in a bad way. Yet, I began laughing until the tears rolled down my face. somehow it had become mixed up in the clean containers and been neatly put away in the cupboard. The smell was horrendous and I had no idea what to do with the decomposing meat pile. It would have made for a good experiment if someone had had the stomach to work with it, but we ended up tossing it outside in the woods. Maybe some vultures will find it and enjoy a nice meal. I could not believe I had done that! What was I thinking! My brain has been completely unlike its normal self lately and I am finding, much to my dismay, that my memory is not as good as it once was. Between working all day at school, then coming home to be a wife, mom, and housekeeper, plus an office manager at Family Pest Control two-three nights a week, well, there are days when I wish my children were small again and I could sit on the floor and just play matchbox cars with them again. Don't get me wrong though...I love my children and where they are now. They are maturing, growing taller than me, becoming wonderful young men and women, as well as growing in the Lord and trying to understand the Bible and settle issues in their own hearts. I love how my oldest is doing his best in working to have a good attitude each day at school. He is making friends and is coming out of his shell. He only has two more years after this and then he will be college age. That is a scary thought. It just goes to show that as he grows up, I am growing up too. Even with my tired body, crazy-fuzzy brain, and busy life, I love where God has me right now and all that He is teaching me. We are never too old to learn. I would not trade my spot right now and go back to where I was before. I am a woman, growing in grace and maturity, and I desperately cling to my God as my anchor and stronghold. Without Him I would be nothing.
Below are a few pictures of what my classroom looks like now. As you can see my theme is the ocean - fish are everywhere and the children love my hut Joe made for them. :) I could put a picture of the old meat on here, but figured it was enough to tell you about and let your imagination do its own work. Oh, and one of these days I will have to share the story of the apple core, but that is for another day. )Have a great weekend!