martes, diciembre 27, 2005



i was out of town for a week and came back home last night around 11. my answering machine light was blinking, but since the only reason i have a phone landline is because of my alarm, i figure it would all be solicitors since no one ever calls my home phone.


14 messages from a student. she sounded happy so i think she just missed me and wanted to chat. of all my kids, she'd be the one to be smart enough to look me up in the phone book and call to see what i was doing over the break.

kinda sweet, isn't it? i'll call her back soon.

viernes, diciembre 23, 2005


music makes the people come together

i hate new year's resolutions and reflections, but sometimes we all indulge ourselves in traditional stupidity. however, instead of getting sappy and emotional, i'll treat you to a few great lists of the best albums of 2005 followed by a very short list of my recommendations (some you may have seen before, i don't listen to a lot of new music, i'm lame like that).

Best of Lists:
El Mas Chingon: Ces has fantastic taste in music, despite his MIA misstep =)
KEXP DJ Top 10: My favorite radio station, in Seattle or anywhere else, has tons of lists to check out in a variety of genres.
Best Songs You Didn't Hear in 2005: I think this list is more mainstream than it thinks it is, and I still don't like MIA, but there are a few songs that I rather liked.

And my lame list:
1. Amadou & Mariam, Dimanche a Bamako
2. Ryan Adams & The Cardinals, Cold Roses
3. Gorillaz, Demon Days
4. Andrea Echeverri, Andrea Echeverri
5. Cafe Tacuba, Unplugged

...and I think Coldplay's X&Y was the biggest disappointment of the year. Snoozefest. If you've got any 2005 releases i should check out, comment away! Have a merry weekend!

viernes, diciembre 16, 2005



i've finished my first official year of first grade. looking back, it's been a pretty smooth ride, all things considered. sure, i've been stressed and sure i've had shitty days, but i haven't had any snags that seemed insurmountable. the parents of my former students have positive things to say about me, my administration is very supportive of me and puts a lot of faith in my work, and my former students themselves are proof positive that i can in fact teach kids how to read and therefore do not suck. my current students are at the critical point where things need to start clicking and things get serious... retention becomes a possibility, parent conferences are no longer to be avoided, and interventions are a necessity.

i'd reflect more, but i'm on vacation. have a great one! =)

lunes, diciembre 12, 2005


vegetarian chili!

last night i whipped together some chili with some pretty good results. if you're in the mood, here's my quickie recipe comprised mostly of convenient veggies and canned goods. serves 4-6 people.

1 can Hormel vegetarian chili
1 can Rotel tomatoes & green chiles
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can pinto beans
1 can kidney beans
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 jalapeno
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp black pepper

Sautée onions until golden, throw in celery and bell peppers for 2 minutes then toss in the rest-- do NOT drain liquids! Let simmer 20-35 minutes then top with chopped onions & queso oaxaca before serving. Super easy!


well you know i'm not in it for the money

i have to admit, i love it when kids give me gifts. definite perk about being an elementary teacher, and at a primary grade at that.

don't get me wrong... i'm very lucky and gets lots of love on a regular basis. since my class switched, my old chamacos like to give me drawings and pictures (remember the tube top?) about once a week, and my students from last year are quite faithful with letters and random gifts (i got a mario --as in "and luigi"-- doll last week). but you gotta love how certain holidays, namely christmas and valentine's day, get everybody in a generous mood. last week, one of my most giving students told me that she had an xmas gift for me but couldn't tell me what it was. for once, i didn't press her, and about ten minutes later she came up to me and confessed that she got me xmas socks but don't tell mom she said anything! cuteness.

today i got my first gift bag: a snow globe and a santa candle. let the gift giving and getting begin!

tomorrow is also tamal day =) best week EVER.

viernes, diciembre 09, 2005


it's not where you've been, it's where you're at

thanks to everyone for their great ideas and activities... i'll be reading Tomie dePaola's Legend of the Poinsetta to all of first grade and doing a handprint cut-out poinsettia with construction paper. next week, the bilingual classes are going to read Gary Soto's ¡Qué monton de tamales!, which of course necesitated a letter home requesting tamal "donations" so we can "taste them". by "donations" we mean "by the dozen" and by "taste them" we mean "make sure the teachers have leftovers to take home".

one more week left!

domingo, diciembre 04, 2005


almost there

time's flying by... i've got some grade-level drama, an upcoming observation, and a navidad unit to plan. therefore, no time to blog! let me know if you've got any good end-of-semester or holiday activities and/or book suggestions.

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